Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Haunting of Hill House (by Shirley Jackson)

Scaaaaaaary. Loved the (unreliable, of course) narrator, loved the details, loved everything. God, Jackson is such an amazing writer... what else is there to say? I mean, here, just read the first two sentences.

No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream. Hill House, not sane, stood by itself against its hills, holding darkness within; it had stood so for eighty years and might stand for eighty more. Within, walls continued upright, bricks met neatly, floors were firm, and doors were sensibly shut; silence lay steadily against the wood and stone of Hill House, and whatever walked there, walked alone.


Sunday, May 25, 2008

Adrian Mole: The Cappuccino Years (by Sue Townsend)

I don't think Adrian ever drinks a cappuccino in this book! Anyway, Adrian is the male answer to Bridget Jones, although this book doesn't have as clear of a story arc as the Bridget books seem to. Ian bought this to read on the plane on our last trip, and I snagged it once he was done. I find Adrian endearing enough to want to keep reading the series, but the number of loose ends in each book is disconcerting!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Chris Farley Show: A Biography in Three Acts (by Tom Farley, Jr. and Tanner Colby)

I love insider SNL books (I want a sequel to Live in New York so bad) and I really enjoyed this, sad thought it was. It's personal recollections of many people who knew Chris Farley (including the real Matt Foley!) and gives lots of background, for good and bad, about why his life turned out the way it did. Ultimately, he emerges as a very sympathetic figure, but at the same time it didn't seem in any way whitewashed.

I did wonder why Adam Sandler and Rob Schneider, among others, weren't in it. And there really weren't a lot of women represented--his mother and sister were interviewed, but neither of their interviews made it. It very much reads as a male point of view, but since SNL really was a boys' club when Farley was there, it makes a certain sense. Anyway, loved reading this; if you're into SNL at all, pick it up.

Monday, May 05, 2008

Ten Days In The Hills (by Jane Smiley)

I was chatting with Ian about this book and it came up that John Updike had reviewed it. Ian claims that Updike called it a "fuckfest" but he may have been paraphrasing. Still, it's basically a fuckfest, with a bunch of rich celebrities and privileged people having a lot of sex and feeling sort of guilty and talking about the war in Iraq. If this sounds exciting to you, let me know and I'll send it to you. It was definitely an entertaining airplane read, I'll give it that. (Also, I found the Zoe character to be unrealistic. She is portrayed as a black actress who has all these white leading men in the olden timey days of Hollywood. When Denzel and Julia didn't so much as kiss in The Pelican Brief? I don't think so.)