Dispatches from the Distancing – Day 37

Another day late post and for the same reason–my eyes were just shot last night.  I actually didn’t get any reading in yesterday, so it wasn’t the usual culprit.  I did spend some time on a jigsaw puzzle, but that has never been a problem before.  Also, my anxiety was higher than usual and I had crappy sleep the night before, so that is probably to blame.

Anyway, Sundays are the day that this sort of hits home.  While I’m glad we are able to have some sort of church over Zoom, it is the most surreal development of this weird period.  I really miss going to church and while most of the week has sort of gotten into its own groove, Sundays remind me that nothing is normal.  While Pat, Lillie, and I crowded into the Zoom scream, this is how Chris spent church:

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Pat had the brilliant idea last night of getting take out.  We actually haven’t done it as much as I would expect and it has so far been limited to KFC and Papa Murphy’s.  Last night, we opted for a true locally business–our favorite Chinese restaurant.  Let me tell you, Orange chicken has never tasted so good!

It is that time of the week where I update you all on what I’ve been reading and, since I’ve been hinting at it, I can’t skip this week!  As usual, I’m linking up with Kathryn at Book Date for It’s Monday…What are You Reading?

What I finished last week:

Other People's HousesOther People’s Houses by Abbi Waxman
This book was a great brain-break for me.  It was entertaining and, at times, laugh-out-loud hilarious and it didn’t require much mental energy.  Waxman wrote one of my favorite books of 2019 (The Bookish Life of Nina Hill), but I wouldn’t say that this one is in quite the same class.  Not that it was bad, but it just didn’t hit the same notes.  This one is very much in the Desperate Housewives vein and pokes a lot of fun at the Los Angeles life (which, as an Oregonian, I always appreciate). If you are looking for something fun to pass the time, it’s a good option.

Now, I mentioned a bit in the past week about my heavy book club reading.  I was working on 2 books for 2 books clubs and it was, ahem, quite the pairing.  For reason that will be immediately apparent, I’m going to talk about these two books together:

Maus II by Art Spiegelman and The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris
So, first of all, my book clubs obviously have something out for me because these two books at the same time is BRUTAL!  There is only so much Holocaust one person can take at a time.  But, beyond that, these books are similar in two crucial ways:

  1. They are both based on true stories of actual people.
  2. They take place at the same place in the same time.  There are events that happened in both books.

The second of those actually made the pairing interesting, but reading these two put out a comparison that caused one book to suffer.

The Maus books are fantastic and I think that they should be required reading in high schools.  The Tattooist of Auschwitz, on the other hand, was not a successful experience for me.  I actually think it would have worked better as a straight biography than a biographical novel.  There was no strong plot arc to keep the story going and even the “epic love story” fell short.  To be fair, I do think that I probably would have felt the same way about it had I not been reading it at the same time as Maus II.

What I started this week:

The WindfallThe Windfall by Diksha Basu
It shouldn’t be a surprise that after my book club-induced jaunt through the Holocaust, I needed something completely different!  I went to my backlog of Book of the Month books and this one looked like it might fit the bill.  I’m about 1/4 of the way through and I don’t yet have a feel of it.  I will say that I’m not as taken by it as I would like, but that might be just because I’m a little bit burned out after spending a week in Auschwitz.  But this one is about a social climbing Indian family and that has absolutely nothing to do with concentration camps.

 

4 thoughts on “Dispatches from the Distancing – Day 37

  1. Good that the Abbi Waxman book was a light relief from life and heavier books. Yes no Church on Sunday highlights how every day is the same! We haven’t been having take out but this time next week Takeout Drives Throughs will be allowed.

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  2. I was late with my Monday post even though it was a Monday holiday for me here in Massachusetts! And so I’m even later with my blog visits…sinking into the doldrums a bit today as the date for opening the library back up seems as though it’s going to be farther away than the few more weeks I was hoping for.
    I haven’t read The Tattooist of Auschwitz yet, though I probably will end up reading it at some point. I was an exchange student in India in high school (over 40 years ago!) so books set in India always appeal to me. I think I have The Windfall on my TBR list already, but maybe I’ll bump it up to the top!

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  3. Other People’s Houses sounds entertaining. It’s interesting that you say Sunday is hardest. I feel like every day is Sunday! Not that it’s any harder, but our Sunday’s have always been somewhat aimless, and now that’s everyday. Take care of you and yours!

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About mdawnott