Monday, January 25, 2010

Octarine, Apparently.

I finished Terry Pratchett's The Color of Magic last night.

I’m finding it useful, if not completely entertaining, to go back to Pratchett’s earlier works and read the “foundations” of his Disc World. This book was great in parts and not as well written in others, and definitely not my fave. Totally necessary, of course, and I’m glad I read it. I loved the tourist Twoflower, and it was cool reading about younger Rincewind. He’s mentioned randomly in later books and it’s good to learn about his character (or lack thereof) and re-think his minor roles later on.

Plus, in addition to starting at the beginning as I’m doing with this book (next up is Book 2 – The Light Fantastic), I sort of want to re-read the Pratchett books I’ve already read, now that I've got more history. Oops. Note to self – start at the beginning next time. Although – if I had started at the beginning I may have stopped there. So, this might be the exception to the rule.

Also – Pratchett is clearly being added to my “Will Read Anything By:” list. Already on the list: Christopher Moore, Kurt Vonnegut, Ray Bradbury, Jane Austen. More I can’t think of right at the moment. I have a thing about finding an author I love and devouring every bit of them I can get my hands on. Bonus for me if they're still alive and writing. Bonus for them too, obviously. :)  So cheers, Terry Pratchett. May your not-perfect health teeter on this edge of life for as long as possible.

Betsy and Tacy Go Over the Big Hill

Last night I read Betsy and Tacy Go Over the Big Hill. I laughed, I cried, I wondered at the little girls who have read this in the last 60 years and hoped they got the message from it that I did. This was a freaking children’s book, with a very powerful message of inclusion and acceptance and what it really means to be an American. I know, right? Silly.

In it, Betsy and her friends are now 10, and trying to be All Grown Up. Along the way they discover that whatever age they are, they’ll always have fun. Cheesy.

But just oh so cute. It is amazing that I book I’m reading in 2010 as a 27-year-old woman, that was written in the 1940’s about 10-year-old girls in the early 1900’s, could remind me so much of what my childhood was and what I always wanted it to be.

Up next for Betsy and Tacy and me: Betsy and Tacy Go Downtown! Thrilling, no doubt.  :)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Yesterday I finished Betsy-Tacy, and then I read all of Betsy-Tacy and Tib. So so cute. These books are so simple but so lovely. I want a daughter to share them with. On to the next Betsy book - Betsy and Tacy Go Over the Big Hill.

Last week I finished Thief of Time, finally. Not his best, but good. I am working on The Color of Magic, which is the first Discworld book by Terry Pratchett. I've already an easy dozen of the Discworld novels, and I'd tried to read this book once before. I think I made it 10 pages that time. Now that I know and love that World that much more, I'm finding it easier to get in to.

Tuesday is library night in my house, but I've had a stack of books I've been tackling already so I'll limit myself to one or none.

Don't think it counts as a "read" but I have also been enjoying Ken Burns' National Parks book, which I checked out at the library. Beautiful pictures, great stories, and I didn't get to see the whole miniseries so I'm loving browsing the book for what I missed. Makes me want to get out and see more of the National Parks. But who has the time? Nah, for now I'll just keep reading.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Still reading

The last week or so has been a mess of sick kid and busy life. I am still reading the same three or so books I've been reading for two weeks, which is weird for me. Must remedy that. I think I'll finish one up tonight. And blog tomorrow.

Friday, January 1, 2010

What to read?

I have a dozen books on the to-read pile right now, and there are a few I'm reading that I need to finish. But I'm going to start this blog with a book I just started reading today. Betsy-Tacy by Maud Hart Lovelace.

I had never read or heard of this book until Wednesday or so when our Christmas presents arrived from my father-in-law. My presents were two volumes with two books each, one containing Heaven to Betsy and Betsy in Spite of Herself, and one containing Betsy and the Great World and Betsy's Wedding. The cover art for these books was great, and one had a foreword by Anna Quindlen, so I was instantly drawn in. I read both forewords and realized that these were books 5, 6, 9, and 10 of a very old, adorable series of 10 books. They start as independent reader aged books and the writing grows up with Betsy, so that you can continue with the series as you "get older". Being 27 now, I'm obviously not going to age much as I read these. But also being someone who loves kids/young adult books, I'm fine with that.

I found the first 4 books in the series at my library, so I've checked them out and started the first. Betsy is just about five years old, the print is huge, and the illustrations are so young and cute. It will be interesting to read 20 years of one character's life throughput the series and see how she grows. From what I've read of the series and the author, Betsy was a feminist way before her time, and she's inspired women all over to write and to be who they want to be.