Monday, January 25, 2016

David Bowie had Top 100 favorite books

When David Bowie passed away in January, there were many great articles about the man, his music, and his life.  One of the articles that intrigued me was the list of his Top 100 favorite books.

Part of the reason this article fascinated me so much is that I could never make that list. I can't think of 100 books (or even 10) that I would call "my favorites."

I read a lot. At least 100 books per year. I enjoy most of them, and if they're in a series, I will generally buy the sequels or companion books, just to follow the characters. But liking a book and putting it on a Top 100 list that I'd want to share?  That's something I'd struggle to do.

A Favorite authors list?  I could do that.  Laura Ingalls Wilder, Elizabeth George, Elizabeth George Speare, Sue Grafton, Nevada Barr, Dick Francis.  Most of these authors write suspense or classic YA/Children's.

I don't have any contemporary YA authors on that list. Maybe I should look harder. In the past year, I've a couple of books I might consider for a favorites list. I read a great book (with one of the finest, most impactful and unexpected scenes I've ever read in a book). It's by Elizabeth Wein, Code Name Verity (although I'm not sure I'd call it YA.) I recently finished Anna and the French Kiss, by Stephanie Perkins. It was great. I'll have to read more and see if she and her books can become favorites.

Maybe it's the word "favorites" that trips me up.  I like so many books and authors, it just seems too hard to pick out a few as the standouts.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Whisper Falls translated into Romanian

Whisper Falls has been translated into Romanian.  I received a copy today and love flipping through the pages.

I enjoy knowing about languages, so I asked my daughter, a linguistics enthusiast, about the Romanian language and she told me: " is a Romance language. It differs from languages like French, Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese which are all closely related. Because it is more distant from the Western European languages, it has been influenced by Slavic languages."

Here are a few photographs of Cascada şoaptelor.

The dedication: For Norah and Charlie... You are not forgotten.

And the first chapter of the book which (in English) is "A Den of Vice." (Google-translate puts the exact translation from Romanian as "A Place of Perdition.")

A Romanian reader on Goodreads posted some quotes from the book. Below is one of those quotes in Romanian and English.

Dintr-odată simt o sfială. Are o expresie anume întipărită pe faţă, o încordare a trupului pe care nu am mai sesizat-o la el până acum. Şi deşi n-aş şti cum să numesc emoţia asta, o simt şi eu. Între noi e ceva special. Ceva greu de definit. Ceva mai presus de prietenie.

- Trebuie să plec, spun şi mă salt pe vârfuri ca să-l sărut pe obraz, mirată de moliciunea pielii lui. Îţi mulţumesc pentru carte.

Mă trage într-o îmbrăţişare scurtă şi oftează.
- Mulţumesc pentru stele."
I knew a sudden shyness. There was a look on his face, a stillness to his body that had never been there before. Though I couldn’t give the emotion a name, I felt it, too. We had something special. Something hard to define. Something past friendship.

“I must go now,” I said and rose up on tiptoe to kiss his cheek, marveling at its velvet skin. "Thank you for the book."

He drew me into his embrace and sighed. “Thank you for the stars.”

Monday, January 11, 2016

Random images - great nieces

I visited my niece and her family in Alabama this summer.  Her two oldest daughters allowed me to braid their hair.

This may seem like an unremarkable event, but really it isn't. I love to braid hair. You would think--given I have two girls of my own--that I've had numerous opportunities to braid hair. You would be wrong.

For reasons unknown to me, my daughters were never particularly interested in letting me do anything frou-frou with their hair. Sigh.

Here are shots of my two beautiful great-nieces. (Trust me, they are beautiful from every viewpoint.)

On the same trip, I saw another niece (still "great" but not in the relative sense) and I braided her hair too. I have my fix taken care of for a while.

I must mention that I've recently had a birthday, and Older Daughter let me braid her hair. Simple gifts are the best!

Sunday, January 3, 2016

New Years un-resolutions

I hate New Year's resolutions. I never keep them, so why bother?

For my first post of 2016, I'll post the things I am resolved not to worry about.

I will not worry about weight loss.
  • I need to lose weight. Always. But I'm not going to focus on a number. Goals haven't worked in the past. I'll just promise to eat better and see what happens.
I will exercise as much as I can stand.
  • Maybe I'll exercise more than I did in 2015. Maybe not. I bought a FitBit to track my steps since I'm serious about getting healthier. But no goals for exercise. I'll strive to do my best, whatever that is.

 I will not sign up for any challenge about the number of books I read.
  • I read a lot. 100+ books in 2015. I'm not sure precisely how many, nor do I care. Part of the pleasure of books is to read as much as I want, when I want. That sounds like a pretty good plan for 2016.

I won't estimate how many books I can write.
  • I write slowly. Very slowly. Two books a year are a stretch for me. I'm contracted in 2016 for three, and they're already in various stages of completion. I resolve to finish them. I resolve to write the best quality stories I can. Anything more than that is a bonus.

So there you are. I want to be healthier, read more, and write well. But no pressure, 'cause I work better without it.

Oh, wow, I've just thought of something that I will resolve to do.

I will travel as much as I can afford.
  • This photo is from a trip to Costa Rica. I like palm trees, beaches, and the ocean. I think my next trip should be to Hawaii. Yeah.