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Tourists, Nerds and Kids

Having you all been wondering about my March book for the TBR Challenge? You all thought I wasn't keeping up, didn't you? You thought that I wouldn't meet my March challenge because of how busy I've been, right?

Well, I'll have you all know that I did indeed finish my March book, Saving Fish from Drowning by Amy Tan. The book was really good. It was very different from her other works, but really well done. At first, I had a hard time following all the different characters and I was surprised that some of her normal themes were not in the book, but after I started getting into it I really enjoyed it.

The political commentary on Myanmar/Burma was well said, as was her look at how obnoxious tourists can be when visiting other countries. As much as the tourists she wrote about annoyed me, I still found myself rooting for them. That takes good writing, because usually if I don't really like any characters in the book, I don't get into what happens to them. In this book, I did. Although I did want to kick some of the characters in the butt and yell at them sometimes... Okay, frequently! But not enough to get frustrated and put down the book. Definitely a good read.

I finished the book last week, and over the weekend I read The Nerd Who Loved Me, by Vicki Lewis Thompson. While I have really liked the other two Nerd books by Thompson that I've read (Talk Nerdy to Me and Nerds Like It Hot), I found this one disappointing. You know how you are taught in writing to not just say it but show it? This book didn't show anything, but just told the reader. The hero was supposed to be so smart, but he never did anything smart other than play chess with a 4 year old. I also didn't find some of the romance part all that realistic (five years without sex and she is able to jump right into a two-day marathon? I know she's a dancer, but come on). And the hero's reason for not wanting to out with the Vegas showgirl in the first place wasn't really explained or fleshed out. The plot itself was okay and the characters fine, but there were just too many things that just didn't have any substance.

Yesterday, I started one of my TBR Challenge alternates, a book I've been really excited about reading: How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk, by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish. I've heard great things about this book from many, many people. I bought the book when the Pumpkin was only a couple months old. I was on maternity leave and would meet up with some other moms who had March babies. I went to the book store with one of the moms, who happens to be a child psychologist. When we were perusing the parenting section, she recommended this book. Since that time, I've heard one good thing after another.

It is apparently in a similar vein as Playful Parenting, by Lawrence Cohen, a book that really spoke to me with its thoughts grounded in child psychology and great ideas that really make sense for dealing with children. I recommend Playful Parenting to everyone with kids! I have a feeling I will soon be recommending How To Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk to everyone, too.

So I may not be keeping up with my yoga or blogging, but I am reading! If I do nothing else for myself, I will continue to read. And lucky you, you get to hear all about it!


Becoming Mommy said…
"five years without sex and she is able to jump right into a two-day marathon? I know she's a dancer, but come on"

If you were talking about a guy, I'd agree--no way. But a woman I can see it. Especially if she's an athlete, like a dancer. In fact, if it's been 5 years the need for a marathon makes a LOT of sense....
caramama said…
But she'd be sore! Not just her dancer muscles, but other areas of her anatomy that don't normally get that kind of "exercise" you know? Oh, and did I mention that the author went on and on about how the guy was very well endowed? If he's well endowed and she hasn't had sex in 5 years, how did they just jump right into it (with minimal foreplay even the first time) and go again and again? Without her ever mentioning that she's sore? I just don't buy it.

The mentally wanted to have a marathon, I get. It's the physical limitations that weren't mentioned that I can't get over. But I guess it is just fiction, so why am I all hung up on it.
Anonymous said…
I grew up in a town that doubled its population every summer when the tourists arrived. Being part of the permanent, year-round crowd, I remember all too well the obnoxious tourists each year. And I try to keep this in mind when I am visiting someplace myself.
I have no idea how you manage to read so many books. None. I'm proud of myself whenever we manage to read both Elmo books, both Knuffle Bunny books, AND a Five Little Monkeys book.
ImpostorMom said…
I'm with Burgh Baby's Mom. I don't know how you do it. Although I did read the latest Sophie Kinsella book in a matter of days and it reminded me why I don't read books anymore. I get far too into them and then I don't go to bed on time.

I have a couple on my list I want to read though, including Rockabye Baby which comes out on Tuesday, woo hoo!

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