Thursday, November 13, 2014
The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe
I hope that this month finds you reading many great reads and enjoying the wonderful weather that we are experiencing!
This month’s book is a debut book by Will Schawlbe called The End of Your Life Book Club. This is the inspiring true story of a son and his mother, who start a “book club” that brings them together as her life comes to a close. Over the next two years, Will and Mary Anne carry on conversations that are both wide-ranging and deeply personal, prompted by an eclectic array of books and a shared passion for reading. Their list jumps from classic to popular, from poetry to mysteries, from fantastic to spiritual. The issues they discuss include questions of faith and courage as well as everyday topics such as expressing gratitude and learning to listen. Throughout, they are constantly reminded of the power of books to comfort us, astonish us, teach us, and tell us what we need to do with our lives and in the world. Reading isn’t the opposite of doing; it’s the opposite of dying.
I have to admit, as an avid reader I was in tears throughout various parts of this book. Along the way I found many good “reads” that I have added to my list of books that I want to read. As with all the other books that have been selected, I encourage you to read this book or at least add it to your list of books to read.
Until next time…happy reading!
Monday, October 27, 2014
Tuesday, September 23, 2014
2 from Erica.
Book Review for September 2014
by Stephen P. Kierman
I hope that this book review finds you all doing well and reading lots of new and exciting books!
This month’s book in a debut novel by Stephen P. Kierman called The Curiosity. The Curiosity, Stephen Kiernan’s debut novel, is a gripping, poignant, and thoroughly original thriller that raises disturbing questions about the very nature of life and humanity—man as a scientific subject, as a tabloid plaything, as a living being, as a curiosity.…
Dr. Kate Philo and her scientific exploration team make a breathtaking discovery in the Arctic: the body of a man buried deep in the ice. Remarkably, the frozen man is brought back to the lab and successfully reanimated. As the man begins to regain his memories, the team learns that he was—is—a judge, Jeremiah Rice, and the last thing he remembers is falling overboard into the Arctic Ocean in 1906. Thrown together by circumstances beyond their control, Kate and Jeremiah grow closer. But the clock is ticking and Jeremiah’s new life is slipping away...and all too soon, Kate must decide how far she is willing to go to protect the man she has come to love.
I really enjoyed reading this piece. It renewed my hope in true love and making your dreams come true. I especially loved the way that Kierman told the story through all the character’s eyes; to me it made the piece come alive.
by Edgar Allen Poe
I would like to share with you on my favorite poems entitled Annabel Lee by Edgar Allen Poe.
Edgar Allan Poe's dream poem is as close to music as words can ever come. First published on October 9, 1849 - two days after Poe's death - this haunting, lyric poem is thought to have been written in memory of Poe's young wife, Virginia, who died in 1847. Gilles Tibo has set the poem in his native Quebec, where the narrator and his childhood love Annabel Lee discover the beauty of the rugged, wind-swept Gaspe Peninsula. But when Annabel Lee dies and is borne away as mysteriously as she had come, the dream goes on, refreshed each time that the moon beams and the stars shine down upon the great rock of Perce that becomes her sepulcher.
As always, you can find this poem and many other poems and books form the Talking Book Library. Broaden your horizons and add a little poetry to your reading…you may never know what you may end up liking.
Until next time…happy reading.
Tuesday, September 9, 2014
Monday, August 18, 2014
Thursday, August 7, 2014
Due to the cancelation of July 25th's ILAB Book Club meeting the scheduled book Blindsided: Lifting a Life Above Illness; a Reluctant Memoir by Richard Cohen has been rescheduled to Friday August 22nd. Each monthly selection thereafter will be pushed back by one month. You will see the new dates reflected in the Calendar of Events.
Wednesday, July 9, 2014
2 from Erica.
Argo: how the CIA & Hollywood Pulled Off the Most Audacious Rescue in History by Antonio Mendez
I hope that this review finds you as well as your reading going well!
This month’s ILAB book of the month was Argo: how the CIA & Hollywood Pulled Off the Most Audacious Rescue in History by Antonio Mendez. I have to admit that when I first read the title I was a little taken aback and was wondering what this read would be about. I was quite surprised and enjoyed the book immensely!
I read the book and saw the movie. Tony Mendez is a true life "James Bond". What was fascinating was how ordinary Mr. Mendez makes himself sound like -a wife and kids in the suburbs, an art studio etc. However, after reading the book, you realize how extraordinary he is. Think about how dangerous it was for an American CIA agent to go into Iran at that time or any time since then. In fact in was more dangerous than going into Moscow during the Cold War. In Moscow, you would likely be thrown out of the country but not killed. In the movie you see Ben Affleck’s character take off his wedding ring before he goes. The book explains that if you were caught, you wanted your captors to think you were single. Imagine the implications. At the same time the sheer audacity of the cover story was something that you wouldn't believe could come out of a government agency. The movie over dramatizes the events that occur to make it a more interesting story; but what makes this caper so successful in reality was how boring it really was. The elaborate Hollywood backstory was necessary both in case the Iranians checked, but also to sell a skeptical White House on trying it and then to sell the hidden Americans that they could actually pull it off. Part of the message here is that disguise is more than makeup, it is the attitude to support it and the backstory was necessary to make people believe it was real. In many ways this was a true "Mission Impossible" mission in the spirit of the TV series. The intersection between Hollywood and the spy world was also amazing. While there wasn't as much action as there would be in a movie (or in the movie Argo) the reality was every bit as dangerous and what distinguishes a true professional is pulling it off without triggering any suspicion. The cooperation of the Canadians was also extraordinary. They actually held a secret session of parliament to allow the Americans to use false Canadian passports (but only for the 6 refugee Americans, Mr. Mendez as a CIA agent had to supply his own fake Canadian passport). It is details like this that make this book so interesting for me.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would recommend reading it if you haven’t done so already!
Until next month…HAPPY READING!
Have you ever wondered what a guide dog does? How do they know to lead a blind owner? Can they understand traffic lights? Most importantly, how does the owner know where to pick up the poop? This memoir answers these questions-and more. It tells what guide dogs are supposed to do. They're smart, loyal and well-trained-but not all dogs are created alike. Musket is proof of that. He's definitely got a thing for treats and belly rubs. For the first time, the dog has his say. (Of course he needed a little help with the typing, since he doesn't have opposable thumbs. That's where author Mark Carlson came in. Still, Musket is the brains of the outfit.) Mark and Musket tell their story with humor, emotion, and Musket's occasional contradictions. And at the end of the day, Musket somehow manages to be a great guide dog too. Confessions of a Guide Dog was written so a wonderful, devoted dog could reach out to those who haven't been lucky enough to meet him. He'll make you smile, laugh, cry, and want to give him treats. This is their story. (And they're sticking to it.)
Thursday, April 24, 2014
Book Review for the week of April 20, 2014.
Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
Hello Fellow Readers!
I hope that this week’s review finds you as well as your reading going well.
ILAB’s book of the month is Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan. To be honest, when I first heard the title of this book I really thought that it would be a boring and uninteresting read. I was sadly mistaken.
Clay Jannon, an unemployed Web designer, takes a job working the graveyard shift at a 24-hour bookstore, owned by the strange Mr. Penumbra. The store is just as inscrutable, with two kinds of customers — random passers-by who stop in so rarely Clay wonders how the store is able to stay open and a furtive “community of people who orbit the store like strange moons. . . . They arrive with algorithmic regularity. They never browse. They come wide-awake, completely sober and vibrating with need.” These customers borrow from a mysterious set of books, which Clay has been warned not to read. He surrenders to his curiosity and discovers that the books are written in code. With the help of his roommate, a special effects artist; his best friend, a successful creator of “boob-simulation software”; and his romantic interest, Kat Potente, who works for Google in data visualization, our likable hero goes on a quest. He solves the Founder’s Puzzle, the origins of which are never clearly explained, using data visualization and distributed computing and stumbles upon an even bigger mystery: Mr. Penumbra has disappeared. Clay tracks him to New York, and in the city, the friends locate the Unbroken Spine, headquarters of a secret society.
I won’t be the one to spoil the one to spoil this book for you; if you haven’t read it already then I highly suggest you call Talking Books to order a copy of it to read. You won’t be disappointed…trust me!
Until next week…Happy Reading!!
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Mom’s Best Friend by Sally Hobart Alexander
In this sequel to Mom Can't See Me (DB041379), Alexander describes how she obtains and works with a new guide dog in Mom’s Best Friend. This book is again written from the point of view of her daughter, Leslie, who describes what her mother must go through in training a new dog after the death of her old one and the minor disasters in the family's life while the woman is away at school. The book also gives information on what a blind person and guide dog must do in training and the problems they face, such as dealing with low branches and other dogs.
Although this book is meant for younger readers, readers of all ages can benefit from it and feel a great deal of pride in their choice of using a guide dog.
Happy reading until next week!!