Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Necklace

The Necklace by Cheryl Davis is a story about thirteen women (with the average age around the late forties/early fifties) who all live in Ventura, California and decide to buy a diamond necklace....together. The experiment was testing the possibility of 13 women being able to share ONE diamond necklace. (A different woman had possession of the necklace each month)

The book itself wasn't intellectually challenging. In fact, I found the concept of the book to be interesting but very simply written...almost too simplistic to the point where I think a 5th grader could successfully read this book. However, I was able to take away a couple of different things from this book.

1. We are all going to have a mid-life crisis where we find ourselves stuck in the same habits and rituals. All of these women had breakthroughs with the necklace. Yes, it is a form of materialism, but all of the women turned their experience with the $20,000 necklace away from it's materialistic roots. Some women wore it while sky-diving, teaching, or even passed it on to strangers (eek!). There was the sense of sharing that somehow helped shed light on their current repetitive lifestyles that made them want to change.

2. As we get older, the harder it will be to have a sense of a sisterhood. Another reason these women consented to sharing such a small item with a pricey tag was due to the fact that missed having a sisterhood, or never had one to begin with. I think as we age we realize how important human compassion and connection is. For these women, the monthly meetings were a way to express what they were going through in their lives. Some had husbands yes, but good friends are different. Others were divorced or unmarried, or without kids, so this group was especially important for them.

3. The concept of sharing one expensive item can be done. This isn't the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. These women weren't passing around worn out jeans, they were passing around a valuable item.... one that gleamed and inspired "oohs" and "ahhs". Of course there were disputes, rules, and drawn-out arguments. However, I think the point of the book was to show that a social experiment can succeed. The feuds and friction ARE what made these women take a second look at their life and what meaning they had attached to it. Some women found their voices, others tamed theirs. Some learned to compromise, to bend, and to understand. Essentially the necklace helped these women change for the better. Even though their story was told in the most simplistic of ways by the author, it got the point across.

So if you need an EASY, BREEZY, read--- this is the one. However, I do think it's a book for older generations. Sometimes when you aren't at the same crossroads as the people you read about in books it becomes to distant of a thought or too hard to relate.

Hope everyone is doing well!


Monday, January 4, 2010

Stereotyping People by Their Favorite Author

Bibliophiles may find this amusing. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I realize I am a little late on this favorite books trend we got going, but I will still put in my two-cents =)

In no specific order.

1. As mentioned by Cat, Handle With Care is my favorite Jodi Picoult book. Of course, I never think you can go wrong with Jodi though :)

2. WHITE OLEANDER- this obviously doesn't help seeing as everyone else has already read it.

3. The hour I First Believed - really a great book to get you thinking and the author is a fabulous writer (also try "I Know This Much is True" by the same author)

4. I recently read this: "The Bitch in the House" It's a series of short stories from women (mostly on the East Coast) who bitch about their predetermined roles as mothers, lovers, and singles. It's really interesting and quite entertaining.

That's all I got for now!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

You guys are going to kill me, as I have MORE Picoult books to add to the list of favorites:

1. The Pact - Jodi Picoult (My favorite Picoult novel is a story about a high school couple who are torn apart when one commits suicide and the other gets charged with murder, don't worry I didn't ruin anything as this is all said on the first page). Also, Handle with Care is her latest and I know is one of Julia's faves.

2. Freakonomics -by those Steven guys haha!

3. Light Chicklit reads include: All of Emily Giffith's books (Something Borrowed and Something Blue are the first two)

4. On my "to read next" list includes: The Help by Kathryn Stockett (it's supposed to be PHENOMENAL) and Shanghai Girls -Lisa See

Right now I'm reading One Fifth Avenue by: Candace Bushnell (author os SATC, duh) but it's kind of slow and lacking. Blah.

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Hi C Lee!

Well, my favorites of all time are:

* White Oleander (which I know you ADORE)
* When the Nines Roll Over by David Benioff
* Lullaby by Chuck Palahniuk
* My Name is Asher Lev by Chaim Potok
* Naked by David Sedaris
* Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
* The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (I hated it in high school, but have re-read it a couple times since then and have absolutely fallen in love)
* The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
* Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott (focused on writing, but very creative, story-like, wonderful)

Hope that helps get you back on the reading train. =)

p.s. I am ashamed to admit that I got sucked into the whole Twilight madness. I read the first book and couldn't stop. I was gonna take it to the grave, but I figured I'd get it off my chest. lol Oh dear.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


It is clear I have not been my usual literary self lately. To get me started again (without having to resort to the "T" word...) what are your absolute favorite books of all time?

Some of mine:

Tree Grows in Brooklyn
White Oleander
Pretty Little Dirty
The Sun Also Rises

there are more, but that's all I can remember for now. Let me know your faves so I can check them out and hop back onto the readiiiiiiiiiingggggg rainboooowwwwwww.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Nazis, Sex, and a Dozen Eggs

"City of Thieves" by David Benioff

This is the story of a character named Lev Beniov and his accomplice Kolya who are assigned an impossible mission during the Nazi blockade of Leningrad. Lev is an intelligent, awkward, self-doubting 19-year-old Jewish boy trekking across the country with Kolya, the Slavic sex god who was imprisoned for wartime infractions. They are both summoned by the street police to go on an impossible mission of finding the Colonel’s daughter a dozen eggs for her wedding cake. Once done, they will get their ration cards back, be set free from jail, and allowed to go back to their families and towns, or whatever was left of them.

Despite the graphic details of the book as the two trudge from town to town and witness starvation, war, savagery, and killings, Benioff seems to insert almost irrelevant spits of humor and inanity – reminding the reader that our narrator is only 19 and has been shoved into war times barely with any chest hair or a place to call his own. He plays on the absurdity of the human condition and how sometimes we are compromised even in times of great struggle.

He travels quickly between humor and devastation, and I guarantee you will laugh out loud and cry a few times while reading this book. To quote a NY Times journalist, “Benioff reminds us what a beautifully ambiguous world we live in,” and it’s true. I promise you will not want to put this down.

If you like the novel and are interested in any of his other work, I’ve also recently finished “When the Nines Roll Over,” which is a collection of short stories by Benioff – they are lovely in so many sad and beautiful ways.