Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Man In The White Sharkskin Suit

The Man In The White Sharkskin Suit  By Lucette Lagnado
Loulou, as she is affectionately known, shares her life from birth in Cairo, the families sad departure and ultimate statelessness that affects them all for many years to come. Life in Egypt, "the Levant", is a magical world of old fashioned ways, family ties and deep Jewish values. As times, war and political leaders change, the jews have no choice but to leave their homeland. With no more than a few hundred dollars for their family of six, they begin their journey to Paris where they must choose between emigrating to Israel or America. Viet Nam is looming, President Kennedy has been shot and Leon, the patriarch of the family is miserable with their negligible status, lack of means and saddest of all, lack of any hope for a happy future. The author is descriptive and thorough in her life's account, her relationship with both her parents, brothers, sister and with her own identity. She generously retells the plight of her family, the story of many jewish families who have been forced to relocate and start over in a country that never feels like home. Its the story of any immigrant family, of any religion, of any race. A captivating and educational read.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Anthropology of an American Girl

Anthropology of an American Girl  By Hilary Thayer Hamann    Eveline Auerbach is a young girl growing up with her mom in East Hampton, New York. She is an artist, a poet, an intellectual girl, desperately trying to find meaning in life, love, friendship and the world around her. Eveline strives for honesty and searches for truth of those close to her. Like most girls during their highschool years Eveline wants to know who she really is and where she is going. She has a boyfriend Jack who is a cynic at 17. The entire world and all its workings frustrate him, his family never understood him and his parents have already discounted him to anonymity. He is a talented musician and the one thing he loves is Evie. Then Evie meets Rourke. He is older, a boxer and theater teacher at the local highschool. Evie falls passionately, obsessively, madly in love with Rourke. And so the story goes. The writing in this novel is extraordinary, it is beautiful and thoughtful. It is thoroughly descriptive, a little depressing and very very long. Anthropology is a recommended read but you must have plenty of time and a quiet space.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Confessions of a Counterfeit Farmgirl

Confessions of a Counterfeit Farmgirl  By Susan McCorkindale    Quirky, fun memoir of successful NYC/NJ girl following her husbands "dream" to leave the rat race, move to the country and breathe that clean fresh air. Susan quits her fruitful yet lifeless position at a high profile magazine to live in the "sticks." Filled with mischief and anything but the mundane, this family of four starts over in very different territory, 500 acres of it! Her writer turned farmer husband immerses himself in this new life, his farm chores and tractor, while Susan stomps around the farm in 4 inch heels with chickens pecking at her $35 pedicure. It is tres cute to read and laugh with the girl next door. If you would like to enjoy a light, funny bit of "the grass is not always greener," here's your book.