Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Summer Reading: Just Kids and Charlaine Say It Ain't So. . .

I'm a bit behind in my summer reading, but here are my impressions and inspirations.  Lover Reborn, JR Ward's new installment in The Black Dagger Brotherhood Series is Thor's story.  It's an engaging read, but the back story seems to have shifted focus away from the Lesser threat. And Anita continues to put Jean Claude on the back burner in Laurell K Hamilton's Kiss The Dead.  I don't know why he remains so devoted.

*Spoiler Alert*

There has been much speculation that the Sookie Stackhouse series is winding down.  Charlaine Harris admits that she does know how it will end but not when.  Sookie and Eric are testing each others' love and commitment in Deadlocked, and neither of them seem willing to acknowledge the other or make any concession.  Too bad, because I think Sookie and Eric could be good together.  I don't expect Eric to cowtow to Sookie's emotional fluctuations.  Sookie on the other hand cut her bond with Eric and keeps pushing him away by telling him to physically go away and cutting off any opportunity for discussion.  As far as I'm concerned, relationships are all about concessions.  Sookie is going to have to learn to give a LOT more if she is ever to find her HEA.  But now it definitely looks as if Eric is going away.  I suppose he will take most of his vamps with him, and the fairies are gone, too.  So Sookie will end up with Sam, have babies, and grow old in Bon Temps.  And what has all of this been after more than 12 books?  Maybe nothing more than the story of someone sowing their wild oats for a few years before they settle down.  Ugh, what a let down.

Far and away the most engrossing read this summer has been Patti Smith's Just Kids.  This book has been out for 2 years, so it is not new.  And it has been getting a lot of deserved attention.  I have been so focused on fiction that I was a bit late on the uptake with this one.  Though I have been a fan of Patti's music for decades, I was unaware of her history.  She is an incredible poet, so it is no wonder that the book is such a great read.  Her tale of how she came to be so much a part of the New York art scene is truly epic, rather random and, honestly, surprising to me, as a much younger punk arriving in The City almost 2 decades later.  Wow, it took me back to those years, reminding me of dreams maybe not yet abandoned.  Time and again, her story is of finding herself, her talent, her voice.  Are we ever too old for that?  I have spent many hours this summer exploring the music and art of her life and my past, too.  What a gift, both personal and prosaic.  Thank you, Patti.

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