Friday Rambles, Fill Ins, And A Short Review

How’s everyone doing this Friday? I’m recovering from a three day migraine and sympathizing with all of my other migraine buddies. Sounds like lots of people are getting them as the seasons start to change over once again. Now we’re going into my most dreaded time of the year…the heat months. Some people just love summer…I can’t STAND it. It always just sucks the life and the energy out of me and it’s doing it early this year. We’ve already had heat indexes in the hundreds and I just can’t stand it. I’ll take the winter any day over the summer. I went and played in my garden for about 5 minutes yesterday and was dripping sweat 😦 I just pray for rainy days! I love rain in the summer…it’s my only relief.

Aside from the heat drain, things seem to be going well over here. Anyone else jealous of all of the BEA folk? ;p I’m enjoying hearing all of the sideline reports over twitter of what’s going on. It sounds like a lot of fun and it sounds like there’s a lot of promising books coming out! Can’t wait for all of the reviews of all of the ARCs to start rolling in!! I always love the roundup posts of the book conventions that follow…so we should have those coming up soon. I’m voting for vlogs from everyone πŸ˜‰

Reading wise, I just finished two books. One is Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver which is going to get it’s own post which will probably be lengthy because it was such an amazing book that I think EVERYONE should read. The other was amazing too, I’m just too lazy to type up a lengthy review right now :p It’s The Last Exit to Normal by Michael B. Harmon. SO good!! It was up for the Nerds Heart YA tournament last year and made it pretty far. It’s about a 17 year old boy named Ben who moves to a country town called Rough Butte after his father admits to being gay and starts a relationship with another man and divorces his wife. Living in the city, Ben turns to drugs, fails out of school and falls in with the wrong crowd so his father makes the decision to move their family to the country to live with Edward (his partner’s) mother.

Needless to say, Rough Butte is a bit of a culture shock to Ben who tends to wear his hair in spikes, skateboards and knows nothing about farm life, but he soon relates to an 11 year old boy who lives next door who is being abused by his father and no longer is in touch with his mother. And there’s also the fact that he’s fallen in love with Kimberly Johan, a local farm girl. I can certainly see why this book made it so far in the tournament and I would’ve loved to see it right up there with Charlie and My Most Excellent Year in the finals. I didn’t want it to end. Ben was such an excellent character….His dad was a realistic character…the story was REAL! No one was “right”. The book wasn’t preachy in the least bit. The book didn’t try to justify anyone’s behavior and I think that’s what I loved more than anything. It portrayed everyone as just being human and being able to make mistakes and showed that that in itself doesn’t make you a good or bad person. It’s what you do and who you ultimately are that determines that. Great book and I’d recommend it to teens and adults alike!

And because I haven’t done a Friday Fill Ins in a LONG time, I figured I’d go ahead and do it this week :p

1. Sandwiches and beer – the best food to take on a picnic. Oh, and you have to have nuts to feed the squirrels and bread for the ducks!!
2. Summer is the worst effing season of them all! It is evil!
3. I could live in flip flops. Seriously, if I could get away with wearing them at work, I would.
4. To love someone is a wonderful thing and I do it as often as I can.
5. When I go to visit Debi in August I so want to find a nature trail and go on a long hike.
6. When I crave food, it’s usually chocolate. Or sometimes something really bizarre and I have to have it that second and I will go to the ends of the earth to get it :/
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to taking it easy after work, tomorrow my plans include relaxing, running some errands and doing whatever the hell I want to do! and Sunday, I want to play in the garden, read some books, drink some coffee, and just have a damn good day!

Hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!!

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12 Responses

  1. 4. To love someone is a wonderful thing and I do it as often as I can.

    That’s my son!!!!

  2. Hi Chris! Mostly I’m skipping all posts, marking as read, and not commenting but I wanted to come here and say I’m so glad to hear Last Exit to Normal was good! I kind of wish I’d read it last fall when my book club was reading it.

    Love you, miss you, and I’ll definitely do a vlog when my books get in, though I have no idea how I’ll get through 35 books in 10 mins, yikes!!

  3. I hate summer, too! Well, the kind of summers you have, that is. When we lived in Memphis, I thought summer was evil incarnate! But here, summer’s actually pretty darn pleasant most of the time.

    I’m soooooo sorry, my sweet friend, that you’ve been battling another killer migraine. 😦 I hope it’s letting up now. You deserve to enjoy this weekend to the fullest!!! Happy to see that after today you have the rest of the weekend off. πŸ˜€

    A long hike can definitely be arranged! In fact, spending a week with this crew pretty much guarantees some time in the woods. πŸ™‚ You know sometimes I just don’t think I can possibly wait until August…I’m just soooooo freakin’ excited!!!!

    The Last Exit to Normal sounds really, really good! I can’t remember if I already have it on my wish list or not, but it’s definitely getting added now. Ooooh, and I just saw on your library thing thingie that you’ve got Sonny’s House of Spies. Somehow I’m sure that I probably already knew that, didn’t I? But Chris, you’ve got to read it–I’m just convinced that you’ll love it! And then you can write one of your awesome reviews, and it will get some much deserved attention. πŸ˜€

    Okay, Debi, shut up already. I’ll save the rest for the novel-length email you’ll be getting this weekend. πŸ˜›

  4. Blimey, just read that Amanda has 35 new books to show! Sorry to hear you have been poorly again with your migraines.

  5. Well, you can come up here because it isn’t anywhere near summer yet. But I really hate the heat too so I can’t complain much.

    I loved Animal Vegetable Miracle too. Definitely a must read!

  6. Ugh, I’m sorry you had a migrane! Poor Chris!!! (((hugs)))

    I can’t wait to read your review of AVM. I’m so glad you read it and loved it too. I think it should be required reading.

    I had to judge My Most Excellent Year against Last Exit to Normal for the Nerds Heartya tournament. It. Was. SO. HARD. Really really hard. Who knows, if I’d read them now, I might have picked it. I loved Ben with every word on the page. He was a great character. Honestly, Augie was the thing that won me over, but Ben was fantastic. It was so hard to pick Chris!!! So hard. I’m glad you loved it. I’d love to see more people read that book.

    Now stay in and stay cool! πŸ™‚

  7. I’ve managed to wear flip flops this whole year teaching. Hee hee.

  8. I’ve been wanting to read Last Exit to Normal since I had the honor of interviewing Michael Harmon via e-mail for a Literary Road Trip post. Love it that some really talented YA authors live in eastern Washington, my neck of the woods: Chris Crutcher, Michael Harmon, etc.

  9. I so wish that you never had to suffer from a migraine ever again 😦
    I’ve wanted to read Kingsolver’s book for a while so thanks for the nudge to get me to pick it up!

  10. Deslily, Love you πŸ™‚

    Amanda, You so need to read it whenever you get the chance to! I just know that you’re going to love this one. Please, please, please! Love you, miss you, and YAY VLOG πŸ˜€

    Debi, So next time you come visit me, let’s just make sure it’s not in summer πŸ˜‰ I had two days off of migraines, and unfortunately they returned today 😦 But I took a pill and it’s gone for now! Yay for hikes!! So excited Debi I can’t even tell you!! I totally forgot about Sonny’s House of Spies!!! I may start it tonight! I was going to start Middlesex, but I may start that now. Hmmm….And you never need to shut up :p

    Vivienne, I know!!! I am DYING to see what Amanda has in her box of goodies :p Thanks..the migraines seem to be easing away now πŸ˜‰

    Other Chris, I totally wish I could come up and visit you! I could try some of that rhubarb crumble that looks so good πŸ˜‰ And escape this heat!

    Heather, Thanks for the hugs πŸ™‚ AVM should TOTALLY be required reading. I can’t thank you enough for recommending that one to me. OMG I can’t IMAGINE how hard that decision must have been for NHYA!! I’m glad I didn’t have to make it :p I’m just super glad that I finally read this one. It was so incredible!!

    Christina, Excellent πŸ˜€ I so wish I could get away with that πŸ˜€

    Carrie, Awesome!! I need to go fine that interview on your blog!! I want to read his other books now too. He’s great.

    Staci, Me too 😦 LOL…You totally need to read AVM! I’m sure you’ll absolutely love it πŸ˜€

  11. I’m so sorry you’ve been battling a migraine. I can’t believe I got away with not having a single migraine while my eldest son was visiting for Kiddo’s graduation, considering the wacky weather! I’m so happy about that.

    Summer sucks. I was just thinking, as I turned the computer back on (after our latest storm threat) that I have lived with severe weather — thunderstorms, tornadoes, hurricanes — all my life. I want to move somewhere COOL and mostly free of wacky weather changes. If I ever manage, you can follow along.

    Flip flops are joyful things, for sure.

  12. Or maybe we should come in the summer again, as we seemed to bring good weather with us! I couldn’t believe how lucky we got. Of course, I’d put up with 150 degree temps to hang out with you. πŸ˜€

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