Read in October 2010

Stick Figure, by Lori Gottlieb
As far as I can tell, it's difficult to write a memoir about anorexia nervosa without getting monotonously, aimlessly grim. This one is saved by the personality of the author's eleven-year-old self: a very sharp and insightful young person with some biting commentary on her own family, food/body/gender, and middle school social life. The text is based on her own diaries; I'd be very interested to hear how they were changed and added to to make this book. A short but thought-provoking read. Made me very glad that I did my growing up in the nineties and noughties rather than the seventies and eighties.

The Secret of the Old Clock, by Carolyn Keene
I was nuts for Nancy Drew when I was about eight (any of you in that club?), so this wasn't my first time reading through it. The used bookstall at the Saturday market had a shelf of first-edition Nancy Drews which were calling out to me so sweetly that I decided to (re)buy myself one a few weeks ago as a mid-semester bedtime treat. It was kind of fluffy and Nancy was slightly too perfect, of course—and there were some funny vintage-isms like:

"In spite of the expensive clothes she wore, she was anything but attractive, for she was tall and slender to the point of being termed 'skinny.'"
There's also a rather disturbingly stereotyped "Negro" character in one scene. (Childishly lazy and irresponsible, comically clueless, speaks in minstrel, has drinking problem.) Totally did not remember that part. Yikes. Weird to run into that on an otherwise nice read down memory lane.

10 comments:

pinkapplecore 11/09/2010 7:38 PM  

you changed your layout!?

Holly 11/09/2010 7:42 PM  

pinkapplecore - yes, definitely. *nods* haha. I wanted something more like a blank page or a blank wall.

odessa 11/09/2010 10:07 PM  

like the new layout! very minimalist.
and yes, count me in on the nancy drew club. i must have read every book. my favorite one was the 'secret of the golden gondola" -- i think that was the title. lol. and i was also sercretly crushing on her bf ned. along with gilbert blythe, laurie (little women), and mr. darcy. geek, much? :P

Edge 11/10/2010 9:37 AM  

Now I kind of want to pick up a Nancy Drew again.

Jenica 11/10/2010 11:20 AM  

The noughties?! Is that what they're called? I love it!
This isn't very many books compared to your usual list! Been busy?

Holly 11/10/2010 11:40 AM  

odessa - thank you :) I don't recognize that title and I feel a bad Nancy Drew fan for it! haha. totally with you on Laurie and Darcy. have never forgiven him for marrying Amy.

Edge - do it. find a pretty vintage copy. :)

Jenica- YES I learned that from Wikipedia and it pleased me so! fits so much better than "the two-thousands." I have been somewhat busier with school reading, and I think I was doing a lot of skipping around and skimming in my leisure reading too.

Erin 11/12/2010 12:06 PM  

I read my share of Nancy Drew books, although I wasn't as infatuated with them as I was with the Bobbsey Twins and the Boxcar Children.

Holly 11/12/2010 1:23 PM  

Erin - I just looked up when the Bobbsey Twins were written. From 1904 to the '79! MAD!

Erin 11/12/2010 9:18 PM  

ohh crazy!!
and thinking about it more I'm remembering a stereotyped Negro "mammy" or something along those lines in those books as well... :/

Holly 11/12/2010 9:51 PM  

Erin - it feels strange to realize things like that. I guess, that childhood wasn't as separate from the rest of life/the world as we (or I) like to think?

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