Posted in Life in general, Miscellaneous

*pokes head in*

I haven’t been here in weeks.  Play rehearsal, performances, plus another go-round with bronchitis have all left me with no energy and no time.  I haven’t even read anyone else’s blog entries; it’s all I can do to stay caught up with my friends on Facebook.

Five more performances of Clybourne Park and done.  Then I’ll be back.  In the meantime, here’s a picture of a goose.  Because who doesn’t love a goose?

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Posted in Book review, Books, Reading

Book review: California by Edan Lepucki

CaliforniaCalifornia by Edan Lepucki

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Cal and Frida live in a little house in the woods. They farm what they can, they trade for goods they can’t make themselves, and they make the best of their primitive existence. Frida occasionally longs for the days when she had electronics and warm clothes, but this is the life they’ve chosen, and it was the best choice they could make at the time. Then Frida discovers she’s pregnant, and now the two of them have to choose anew: stay where they are, by themselves, and hope they and the baby survive; or travel to a nearby secretive settlement and hope to be taken in?

Set some 100 years or so into the future, California is a bleak vision of a possible future world, one wrecked by climate change and pollution; stratified by extreme income inequality; a world in which people escape dangerous cities rife with domestic terrorism to eke out a desperate existence in the wilderness because it’s safer to starve in the forest than scrounge in the suburbs.

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Posted in Book review, Books, Reading

Book review: Sisterland by Curtis Sittenfeld

SisterlandSisterland by Curtis Sittenfeld

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

“Sisterland, population 2” was the sign Violet and Daisy posted on the door to their room when they were children. As twins, and specifically as twins within a dysfunctional family unit, it was often the two of them pitted against the world, at least until they were grown and left the family home to forge their separate ways.

In college, Daisy shed her childhood identity and became Kate (her middle name); she avoided mention of her twin with whom she shared a psychic talent; she deliberately suffocated that talent itself; and when she married and changed her name, she put behind her virtually all easily recognizable association with her family of origin. In the suburbs of a city the size of St. Louis, it was relatively easy to avoid anyone who may have known her when she was young.

Violet, on the other hand, failed at everything — college, relationships, jobs — and eventually embraced her psychic talent and turned it into her livelihood. When she predicts a major earthquake will hit soon, Violet attracts national attention, and Kate’s quiet suburban life is thrown into an uproar.

Sittenfeld has written a thoughtful examination of sisterhood and marriage, friendship and family, and how the choices we make affect not only ourselves but the people around us. Lovely work.

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