Wednesday, April 20, 2016


Carole Lombard enjoying two of my favorite things
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1. What are you currently reading? Three Witnesses by Rex Stout. This is a trio Nero Wolfe novellas, written in 1956, and so far it's completely charming. I haven't read a book from the Wolfe series in nearly two years, and it's a joy to be spending time with the orchid-loving genius gourmand and his right-hand man, Archie Goodwin. (I admit I've always been a little in love with adorable Archie.) If you're a fan of mystery series, I highly recommend Rex Stout and Nero Wolfe. There's minimal violence, maximum atmosphere, and a supporting cast of colorful characters.

I'm reading a second-hand paperback, published in the 1980s and purchased for $1 from the local library book sale. I enjoy second hand and library books. Wondering who held them before adds to the romance of the story. As I read this, I worry about losing that as the world moves inexorably to e-readers.

2. What did you recently finish reading? Sinatra: The Chairman by James Kaplan. It took me nearly two months to plow through this prodigious tome. But oh! Was it ever worth it!

Sinatra was complex and fascinating and never, ever dull. He was a monstrous, affectionate, generous, violent, tender, brave bully. His life was so big, his mood swings so drastic, that I felt exhausted every time I put the book down. And while there's plenty of drama -- what with his Mafia ties and many, many, many women -- there's also wonderful background on how Sinatra created his music. He knew how good he was, and he always tried to do right by his music and his audience. Now that I know how much work went into making those recordings, I can no longer just have them on as background music or white noise, I find myself listening as though I'm hearing them for the first time. So while I often didn't like him during this biography, I always admired his integrity ... when it came to his work, that is.

3.  What will you read next? I don't know.