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Tag Archives: movie tie-in

The Road by Cormac McCarthy

The Road by Cormac McCarthyFirst of all, please don’t think I picked this book up because of the Oprah endorsement. I’m made of meatier things than can be swayed by an Empress. But when it comes to Viggo Mortensen, I’m JELLY. It might have something to do with his hair/face/body. Anyhoo, I remember seeing the cover of the book whilst shelving at the unnamed bookstore I worked for and thinking, “Oh, Viggo, when will we stop playing these games?” At around the same time my brother saw No Country for Old Men and was all, “I’m scared to sleep alone.” That movie being based on a McCarthy book paired with Viggo on the cover of THIS book slayed me. So I began the reading.

And let me tell you. It is not a happy read. Clinically depressed people and people prone to over-sympathizing, stay away. You will not have a happy thought for days. Not exaggerating.

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Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

Water for Elephants

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

This is one of those books that customers have been recommending to me for years, but I’ve been never felt much of an urge to read myself.  With the movie coming out I figured I would give it a shot, not that I have any particular plans to see the movie, but just to see what all the fuss is about.

We’ll start with the good: Gruen obviously did a lot of research on Depression-era train circuses. She does a good job describing what life on tour with working men, performers, sideshow freaks, and a menagerie of animals might be like.  It’s a very quick, easy read (I read it in two sittings) that moves along at a decent clip.

Some problems I had:

1) Jacob, the protagonist, is debilitatingly passive throughout the story.  He constantly finds himself in circumstances where others take control from him, and he does nothing to stop them.  Other characters make almost all his decisions for him, which is frustrating beyond belief.  For instance, he makes a vow to himself not to let any of the animals be harmed again – but then stands idly by as the elephant is tortured with a hook.  Multiple times.

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Something Borrowed – Emily Giffin

Something Borrowed by Emily GiffinOn the night of her 30th birthday, Rachel allows herself to sleep with the man she has desired all throughout law school. And it was great. Dexter Thatcher is great, the sex was great, and she feels great. That is until she wakes the following morning with a slight hangover and her absolute best friend’s fiancé in her bed. That’s right, folks. Dex is none other than Darcy’s long time boyfriend and recent fiancé. In fact, Rachel was the one who introduced the two. Bitch, right?

Quickly Dex comes up with a cover for both of them and they part ways, each feeling guilty. But only slightly. Thereafter, the story unfolds like you’d expect it to. Rachel and Dex sneak around to see each other and manage to hide it from all, save a select few non-judgmental and almost encouraging friends. All the while, though, Rachel – who prides herself on being on the straight and narrow her whole life- questions her actions, her friendship with Darcy, modern feminist arguments of being complete without a man, whether what she is doing is all that wrong, and if Dex really is “the One” or if she is fooling herself or he’s fooling her. Bitch, right?

Well, wrong. At least the way Emily Giffin tells it.

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