Sunday, May 3

Troubled Times Ahead

My friend Stacey believes I read only the most depressing/morbid books around. Stacey is under this impression because every time the question of "What are you reading?" comes up, inevitably I'm reading something on the plague, the dust bowl, the crazy Tudors or something along those lines. I contend that I like stories of survival and appreciate a good yarn.

It's true, I lean towards history and that can get a little inconsistent in terms of feel-good-factor.

I'm currently reading Columbine (don't tell Stacey). Another friend, Heidi, recommended it and I'd heard about it on NPR. It's being compared to In Cold Blood for God's sake. Next up? The Burn Journals about a 14 year old (self inflicted) burn victim and Live Through This, the story of a mother's search for her young runaway daughters. I picked those up after hearing a fascinating episode of This American Life that featured interviews and excerpts from both books.

Of course, between all of the above I'm also reading the Sookie Stackhouse series and enjoying those as well. But then the swine flu, err... excuse me, the H1N1 virus hit which naturally makes me want to re-read Hot Zone.

But then today The New York Times ran a review of The Indifferent Stars Above. Why am I interested in this book? Well, let's start with the full title: The Indifferent Stars Above - The Harrowing Saga of a Donner Party Bride. SOLD! How about that call out? "After reaching safety, Sarah Graves learns that her younger sister survived, in part, by eating their mother." Oh man! Of course I also liked it when the reviewer explains "I kept interrupting my husband, Ed, to relay the latest Donner dinner horror. "They're toasting their moccasins," I'd say. Ed happened to be reading Calvin Trillin's Feeding a Yen. "Calvin's eating fish tacos in Barbados," he'd answer. It went on this way for 100 pages. Boiled ox bones. Macaroni pie. Luis's organs! Pain baguette."

Awesome! Who's with me?


shandon said...

Heehee! I have an advance copy of it, if you want it!

kb said...

The Burn Journals? Really nasty...and yet I am intrigued!