Wednesday, August 06, 2014


To play along, just answer the following three questions ...

• What are you currently reading? At Risk by Patricia Cornwell. It's filled with intrigue and intersecting plots: a cold case in Tennessee -- a vicious murder of a wealthy senior -- is somehow tied to a gruesome train fatality (suicide?) and for some reason these deaths are of vital interest to an ambitious Massachusetts DA.
It's a slim book, and if I hadn't been sidelined with a bad cold that left my brain as fuzzy as cotton candy I'd be done with it by now.

But beyond my broken brain, I'm struggling with it not because of the plot or the prose -- Cornwell's writing is dependably good -- but I've yet to find a character I really like in this story. Like most readers, I know PC best for her Scarpetta books and my very real affection for Kay can keep me reading no matter what. I don't have that in this stand-alone effort.
• What did you recently finish reading?  Keep Your Friends Close by Paula Daly. This is a trashy summer read. But it August, so that makes it the perfect time to pick it up. It's got secrets and betrayal and sex and even a cat in peril (SPOILER: Morris is fine at the end; I share that for readers like me who get so distracted when critters are involved in the plot). This book is not art. The plot doesn't bear up under close scrutiny. But it is a page-turner.

• What do you think you’ll read next? I don't know. I've got an Agatha Christie and a Linda Fairstein beckoning me.

To see how others responded, click here.

Feelin' Weirdly

Back in 1967, Simon & Garfunkle recorded "The 59th Street Bridge Song," better known as "Feelin' Groovy." It's been running through my mind because my day was perversely not groovy.

I went back to work today. I'm still not feeling strong, but I had to go back sometime. And there was absolutely nothing going on. Not a damn thing. The only email I had to answer was why I wasn't making a change. It was OK. I mean, better not to be overwhelmed. But the total lack of work was spooky. No one else seems concerned. Our client is going through a massive reorganization on their end and they have to get it together on their end before they can give us assignments. I get that. It just felt ... weird.

I heard from Cousin Rose. She's coming to Chicagoland in a few weeks and is not staying with me because I lied to her. I told her my bathroom will be under renovation and that's simply not true. I don't want her here. She would make me crazy. Also, my place is filthy and I wouldn't be able to get it together in time. It's better this way, but I feel guilty about it because I know she loves me and because she enjoyed having me stay with her last autumn, even though I found it awkward. I assumed she was going to bunk with her cousin on her dad's side, who lives somewhere in the city proper.

Here's the kicker: Rose is going to stay at a motel. She wrote me that she just cannot deal with that other cousin's peculiarities. (Specifically, but limited to, not having clothes washed with scented laundry detergent or fabric softener in her home.) So I guess Rose loves but is annoyed by her cousin, the way Rose is loved by yet annoys me. This feels weirdly like an O. Henry short story.

I heard from aunt. Her husband had his gall bladder removed. There was no reason to suspect this was serious, but she loves her hubby and was anxious about it. I sent her the trashy novel I just finished and a card for him. It meant a great a deal to her and that made me happy. I shot my kid sister a Facebook message, mentioning the surgery, in case she wanted to shoot our aunt a message. I heard nothing back. Is she upset that my aunt didn't tell her about the surgery? Is the mad at me again over something? Facebook can make things so fucking complicated. Family can be so fucking weird.

Reynaldo. My cat is a skinny beige freak. He's been on a destructive tear again. And the thing of it is, young Connie wants to play with him. But no, he wants my attention and will do whatever he can to get it. As my vet explained a little over a year ago, this cat is "unusually bonded" to me. Sigh. Weird.

Yours in a world of weirdness,