KimN ~ Julie & Julia

4 02 2010

Julie & Julia ~ Julie Powell

Jan. 26 ~ I recently watched the movie Julie & Julia with my mom, and I wondered what the book that inspired the movie was like.  It was sitting on my bookshelf because I had picked it up for $5 from Chapters Online so I thought I’d give it a go.  50-pages in I am finding it to be clever and humorous.  Julie is a likable character – the kind of person you want to be friends with and you pity at the same time.  Stay tuned for more thoughts!

Feb 4 ~ I apologize for the delay in my review of this book.  It was a quick read and I finished it a few nights ago but have been fighting off headaches all week long and haven’t wanted to stare at a computer screen longer than I have to!  I really enjoyed this book… my one complaint is probably that it isn’t long enough!  Julie’s free-flowing style of prose was so easy to follow and kept me attentive the whole way through its mere 300 or so pages.

Julie Powell spontaneously decides to cook her way through Julia Child’s cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking-Vol. 1, in 1 year.  That equals 524 recipes in 365 days.  Quite the ambitious decision if you ask me!  She cataloged her escapades on a blog and her experience resulted in a book deal for this novel (and as you all know, a movie based on the book starring 2 amazing female actresses).  The style of the book is much like the style of a blog – kind of a stream-of-consciousness style.  Julie tells you exactly what she is thinking and jumps around talking about different aspects of her life, while tying them all together with her experiences cooking the various eccentric French culinary dishes.

The story inspired me.  I won’t begin cooking my way through a French cookbook by any means, but it has caused me to question what I could be doing differently in my life.  How could I challenge myself, as Julie challenged herself?  And, what could the benefits of that challenge end up being?  A publishing deal, surely not, but what else could arise?

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KimN ~ The Glass Castle

13 10 2009

The Glass Castle ~ Jeannette Walls

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I’ve had a few people recommend this book to me and I don’t think I have EVER read a memoir before… the first 15 pages (which I read last night) were very intriguing…

Now I’m going to make a mug of steaming apple cider (its the first day of October but it already feels like winter and its freezing!!) and hunker down with this book for the evening.

~~~

Oct 13 – I finished this book on Thursday and absolutely loved it!  As I said, it was probably the first memoir I’ve ever read.  I don’t even know how to start writing out my thoughts on this book… I have so many!  The novel opens with a successful, grow-up Jeannette spotting her homeless mother rifling through a garbage bin.  Then Walls switches gears and takes you back to her childhood, starting at the age of 3.  It is hard to imagine growing up in the Walls household, with a father who spends his money on booze and parts for his elaborate inventions, and a mother who would rather focus on her artistic career (if you could call it that…) than use her teaching certificate to work and provide for her family.  Although their parent’s priorities were all wrong, the Walls children found ways to get by and made life an adventure as they moved throughout the country, living wherever they could find room.  It is interesting to read Jeannette’s take on how each of her siblings adjusted to life.

I really enjoyed how Walls chose to format the novel – it is a series of short stories or excerpts.  This makes it really easy to pick up and read, and it was interesting how the excerpts all tied together even though Walls didn’t use many transitions at the beginning or endings of the excerpts.

I would highly recommend this tale of the resilience of the Walls children in the face of a number of odds.  The success of this novel alone is a true testament to the drive and determination of Jeannette Walls to overcome the experiences and living arrangments of their childhood.