Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Forever Liesl (by Charmian Carr)

I took the advice of a friend and downloaded a Kindle app for my Smartphone to read while nursing, and I've been doing just that the past few days. (I also have an actual Kindle, but the app is handier, since I also have a stopwatch on my phone that I use to time how long the baby is nursing.) I decided to start off with something super light, hence this memoir by The Sound of Music's Liesl.

Definitely a fun read if you're into the movie, and definitely a very light read. I wanted it to be better written and denser; for instance, I really don't get a good sense of the personalities of most of the "von Trapp kids," and I get the sense there's a lot of dirt she isn't dishing. (Come on, she and Christopher Plummer were relatively close in age and super hot. Tell me more, Liesl!) I also wanted more details about the movie itself. It just felt like there could have been more there there. Still worth a read if you're a fan.

On a completely tangential note, I saw Charmian Carr when we went to the Hollywood Bowl a few years ago for Singalong Sound of Music. She is still just as beautiful as she was when she played Liesl.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

The Complete Persepolis (by Marjane Satrapi)

The last book I taught in my World Literature course. Really a lot of fun to discuss; the graphic novel made a nice change of pace to round out the end of the semester, and the final papers were on the whole super smart. Again, it's been a while, so I'm trying to remember what we talked about. I know we talked about feminism in Iran; Marjane's character as a metaphor for the Iranian people; the importance of the "simple" visual style; the importance of the amount of "real estate" the graphics took up; the theme of art in general, and the subversiveness of the graphic novel form; the role of Western culture; the controversy over the book's portrayal of Islam; other interesting shit like that. An excellent teaching book.