Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Recent Entertainment

The current job has me driving long distances and spending a great deal of time alone in hotel rooms. I have been filling my road trip time with audio books and my hotel time with Netflix's new Instant Watch videos. Here are my quick reviews on my latest entertainment choices:

Audio Books:

Summer Sisters by Judy Blume
I have no idea how this one wound up on my 'to read' book list but there it was and the library actually had it, so it found it's way into my collection. Due to limited down time I had been listening to this one for quite some time, over a month. I finished it up on my trip from Cincinnati to Chicago. The book follows the life of two girls born in the 70's from the summer they are 11 through about 30. One of the girls, Caitlyn, comes from a wealth background and spends summers with her father in New England. The other girl, Victoria, or Vix, comes from a blue collar family and becomes Caitlyn's Summer Sister. The book basically follows them as they go through life, coming together every summer. The reader on this was pretty good, her voices weren't great but better than most and her cadence is great. I'd recommend it.

Rococo by Adriana Trigiani
This author was recently added to my list of favorites. She also wrote Queen of the Big Time which I really enjoyed and the Big Stone Gap series which I think are great. The difference in this novel is that the main character is a man, 'B' for Bartolomeo. He is a passionate interior decorator so the book is filled with elaborate descriptions of color and architecture. B's biggest dream is to redecorate his local parish and the book follows him on this mission. Along the way he makes unlikely friends and learns something about himself and his family. Like all of Trigliani's books this one includes a typical, large and boisterous Italian family and digs into their dynamics. I wouldn't say this is my favorite from Trigliani but it was definitely a nice way to stay awake on my road trips

A Girl Named Zippy by Haven Kimmel
I randomly plucked this book off the shelf at the library and I am certainly glad I did. It's about a girl growing up in a very small town in Indiana. The main character is feisty and has a lot of personality. The author has a great, sarcastic sense of humor that to me is slightly reminiscent of David Sedaris's style. I'm only about half way through this one but so far it's kept me chuckling and entertained.

Next on the list:
- Wicked
- Great Gatsby
- Sister Mine
- The Wild Trees

Netflix Movies:

The Children's Hour
I love old movies. This one has Audrey Hepburn (who I think is amazing) and Shirley MacLaine. I am forever surprised by the content and controversial topics covered in old movies – infidelity in The Apartment, services for hire in Breakfast at Tiffany's etc – and this one was no different. The movie is about two college girlfriends that open up a boarding school for girls. One particular student spreads a rumor that the two teachers are 'unnaturally involved', labeled as lovers the two girls are shunned. I like it.

Big Dreams in Little Hope
The Netflix Instant View selection is limited. You can watch old movies, some TV shows and B, C and D flicks. This was an F flick. Don't bother. I'll just leave it at that.

On the list to watch:
Season II of Alfred Hitchcock's Twilight Zone
Season I of Heroes
The Seven Year Itch
Bus Stop
The Desk Set

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