Tuesday, June 17, 2008

When you are engulfed in flames by David Sedaris

(Before I give my schpiel with this book, let me just say that if you ever get a chance to go see David Sedaris read, you should definitely jump at the opportunity. I've seen him about 4 times now and every time is absolutely hysterical. His voice is what really sells his materials and makes his material go from amusing to laugh out loud. As a side note, the 2 times I've met him afterwards during his book-signing, I totally made a jack ass out of myself and I also think he might have hit on my boyfriend too.)

Anyway, this is Sedaris' 6th book and contains the same witty vignettes and wily anecdotes about his life in France, his family, and ever-so-patient boyfriend Hugh. The title refers to the longest story in the book in which Sedaris travels to Tokyo in an effort to quit smoking. The great thing about all of David Sedaris' stuff is that it's all so relatable and quirky in a "yeah, you know you're right!" kind of way. Whether it's trying to keep spiders as housepets or fighting with people on an airplane, it's all good stuff.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Are you there vodka, it's me, Chelsea by Chelsea Handler

Fans of the E! show "Chelsea Lately" will undoubtedly love Handler's newest book for its bitter sarcasm, witty dialogue and humorous anecdotes. Handler spends the bulk of her book insulting and offending people, though I personally like that kind of thing. The book is more of a memoir (though in this day and age, who knows how to separate fact from mostly-fact) but a lot of the stories are more compelling than you would think. Handler is also kind of sweet when it comes to depicting her family. Sweet in a smart-ass kind of way. Overall, a pretty fast and amusing read.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

Boy, this was a meaty read - full of violence, sex, mystery, love, murder, betrayal, war...the list goes on. Spanning 3 decades, Pillars explores life in the middle ages in England as the small town of Kingsbridge struggles to build a grand cathedral. For a book this size, there are a few main characters - Prior Philip, who must navigate corrupt waters to get his cathedral built, Tom Builder and his stepson Jack, who are master masons, and Aliena, a steely and independent woman. Does the cathedral get built? You'll have to read to find out...

The book is close to 1,000 pages long, but it's worth the time. You can see why Oprah selected it for her book club.Follett, who usually writers thrillers, does a pretty good job with this one. My only complaint is the fact that his characters live to be like 60 or 70. I'm pretty sure in 1142 AD, you were lucky if you made it to 40.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Meeting Famous Authors!

Peggy, a Library Assistant, was lucky enough to meet both Harlan Coben (who was promoting his book Hold Tight) and Andrew Gross (ditto for The Dark Tide). Here are some cool photos from her: