Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Books and theater, Sept-Oct 2015

Books and theater, Sept-Oct 2015

In Vegas there is a free monorail between Aria and Bellagio.  One of the platforms has a Turrell in it?!? Small space, two windows, outlined in pink.  Not an ideal setting like a museum but such a nice surprise in an unexpected setting.

-by Jane Smiley
Early Warnings:  the second in the trilogy...oh man, now I have to wait for the last one.  Continuation of the story of the family Langdon.

by John Buchan
-The 39 Steps:  I saw the play of this a couple years ago and so when I saw it was a book I had to check it out...turns out the book was first-1915! and was one of the first spy novels.  Then there was the Hitchcock film (which I had to watch after reading the book).  Turns out the book and film are like Ian Fleming and the Bond movies....some similarities, but more the spirit of the thing.  A couple other films were made, then the play in 1995 and spoofed the Hitchcock film-only 4 actors, references to other of his films.  I liked the book-makes me want to go back to Fleming....

-By Paula Hawkins
The Girl on the Train:  This is one of those best sellers where I read it and went, really?  I mean, yes, it kind of pulled you along and again getting into the heads of people.  And a bit of a mystery but you won't ever get the clues to solve it....and it is all about unpleasant people.  Meh, I prefer Jane Smiley.

-by Ernest Cline
Ready Player One:  I know I am late to the game...but yes, this is so fun!!  Totally written for the 40-ish nerd crowd and a fast read.

Delicious drinks and snacks in Vegas!

-edited by Pamela Smith Hill
Pioneer Girl by Laura Ingalls Wilder:  I loved the Little House on the Prairie series growing up, so had to read about the origins.  Turns out to be an interesting story-the first version LIW wrote was non-fiction, intended for adults.  No publisher was interested, so she and her daughter, Rose, rewrote it for children.  And it was no longer true non-fiction.  More like historical fiction, where she tried to be as true to the facts as possible, but often re-ordered them to make a better story.  Now I want to re-read the series....

-by Erich Segal
Love Story: I'm in a reading challenge and one book was "came out the year you were born".  So I looked up the bestsellers for 1970 and this was at the top of the list...and one that I knew I had in my library.  It has been a while-I was surprised at how short it is...and well written-concise.  Maybe I should watch the movie too!

-by Neal Patrick Harris
A Choose Your Own Autobiography:  such a fun set-up.  Love NPH!  And the evolution of he learned to act and the roles he played is interesting.  Since we saw him in Hedwig and the Angry Inch I was blown away by what a demanding role it is, now I understand how he did it.

-by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Between the World and Me:  Anyone who thinks that racism no longer exists should read this.  Hard to read, but harder to not read...

More good Vegas drinks

Why yes, that is a blue cotton candy the famous Serendipity where dessert was frozen hot chocolate.

-by John Burdett
Bangkok Haunts and Bangkok Tattoo:  more in the series of a Thai detective.

-by Paul Tough
How Children Succeed:interesting take, you do best if you have character qualities like grit and determination, which can be built up just like you can improve how smart you are-goes well with the Carol Dweck book.

-by Allie Brosch
Hyperbole and a Half:  Just had to re-read much funny and important packed into a small space.  If you have never heard of her, just go read this

by Haruki Murakami
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage: Okay, so I really liked the first book I read and then was luke warm on the second.  This was more like the second, a nice story, well told, but the ending leaves me feeling a little hanging....not sure I love him enough to read more.

performed by the Shotgun Players in Berkeley:  Wow this was amazing.  A modern retelling of the classic story.

-by Neil Gaiman and various artists
Sandman: this is just something I have to re-read occasionally-inspired by the play above since the Sandman has a version of the Orpheus story.  Only made it through vol 1 and 2 of the giant compilations

-by Art Baltazar and Franco
Tiny Titans, starting with Return to the Treehouse.  This is a fantastic series!  It is great for beginning readers, but fun for all ages!  Look at the art-so cute!!

-by Janet Evanovich
Top Secret Twenty-One:  These are great airplane reading.

Finally, we rode the Vegas monorail and saw Elton John's concert!