Wednesday, July 19, 2017


WWW. WEDNESDAY asks three questions to prompt you to speak bookishly. To participate, and to see how other book lovers responded, click here

1. What are you currently reading? Kennedy and Nixon, by Chris Matthews. As I watch a new President demonize the press and get bogged down in scandal, I get a horrible sense of deja tragedy. I'm working through the foreboding by reading about Nixon. 

Kennedy and Nixon explores "the rivalry that shaped Postwar America." Chris Matthews begins by introducing us to Jack and Dick, two WWII Naval Officers who entered Congress at the same time and were quite friendly, until circumstance and ambition pulled them apart. As they gained national stature, the difference in their appeal became obvious. One's strength was his charisma, the other's was his very ordinariness. To slightly paraphrase Matthews in this highly readable book, "Americans viewed Kennedy as their shining hero. They recognized Nixon as the face that stared back at them in the bathroom mirror."

2. What did you recently finish reading? Exposed by Lisa Scottoline is one of those books I liked ... except when I didn't.  (This was an ARC from Amazon.)
Exposed highlights the evolving relationship between Bennie and Mary, the two central characters of the Scottoline's popular "Rosato" series. My favorite scenes were the ones that had the two women putting their heads together to solve the case. "Teamwork makes the dream work," Bennie says.
Still at times it really annoyed me. Mary's family and the gang from South Philly, mostly Italian immigrants, are cartoonish. I know they're supposed to seem colorful, with their broken English and loud voices and cute nicknames, but it wears thin fast and soon becomes a condescending distraction. And there's a major plot point that really doesn't bear up under close scrutiny. It feels especially sloppy for an author of Scottoline's profile because it involves health care coverage, and that's something that the entire country seems to becoming more knowledgeable about. Where are her editors? (I won't say more to avoid spoilers.)

3.  What will you read next? I've got Sue Grafton's X, a Kinsey Milhone mystery I've yet to crack open.