So my birthday just happened last week. Yay!! to another year closer to geezer status. Not thrilled about that. Content I survived thus far though. I can’t complain…but I still do. I’m a fairly joyful little curmudgeon…if that makes any sense to anyone. Bouts of complaining..moments of light cheer..a bit corny…depressed and lazy…genuinely wanting to do good, be good, think the good in others….all while wearing the worst little sour puss face possible. Eh, it’s who I be and hopefully I get to be it for yet another year.
So yeah….my birthday happened. My daughter asked me what I wanted from her. Straight A’s and a clean room?? Yeah okay so she asked what I wanted that could be bought in a store…something more attainable obviously. “A good old fashion scare” I said. You know the kind……the one that makes you afraid to be in the house alone. The one that makes you shit your pants when you get startled by an unfamiliar noise. That kind. Most of my scares as an adult have been in the form of threatening bill collectors and kids getting sick. Most of my scares have been about our debts and real life stuff. I want one that comes from books…the kind you get when you are naive and innocent and stupid and just a kid. That kind exactly!!
With that said, I’ve been on a great reading streak. Life has been handing me some fantastic and not so fantastic curveballs…and usually when that happens I slow done with the reading. It’s so hard to read when you have a lot on your mind. However that has not been the case lately. I have been reading fiercely no matter the situation. I recently had to review a book that was sent to me by a publisher and that book really is the driving force to my need for all things fanfuckingtastically scary. Non-fiction, true crime, a kid gets killed by some crazed lunatic. All parents worst nightmares materialized into a novel. It was insane…scary as all hell, and had me really fearful of the idea that those certain lunatics share the same planet as I do. That book, The Fact Of A Body, was intense. Sad, scary, and intense. Two crimes…two different victims…two different outcomes…both tragic in their own way. And here’s the thing…if you know me…you know that I live for true crime. The more gruesome, mysterious and terrifying the better. I google research, I seek out crime scene photos…I’m even a damn member for Web Sleuthing sites. I can sit for hours and hours on my laptop investigating this stuff. It’s macabre…it’s strange…it’s what I do. I am always on the hunt for something chilling and dark. I live for the thrill of being in that kind of fear. Get me to drive a car, ride a roller coaster, get a job….whole other level of fear that I can’t do. Show me the crime scene photos of Jeffery Dahmer while we sit by my huge living room window in the dark…I’m all in.
So yeah…I read a great book…and then I wanted more. I wanted to test the waters of scary fiction. I tried a few books…did nothing for me. Didn’t want to give up without giving the wonderful Stephen King a chance. I have a steady collection of his work but of course leave it to me to want to get my hands on something that I don’t already own and my daughter offered to get…I wanted “It”. I had been checking out some booktube reviews…and from what I gathered “It” would be the book that would provide such a scare. Many vloggers placed it as their number 1 or at least in their top 10. I received my book….a tome if there ever was one. Over 1,150 pages….massive…intimidating….and all mine for the enjoying.
It’s safe to assume, a week later, I am still reading the book. About 400 pages in. Lots of character building, history of the town, the lead ups to the main horrors….but no actual horrors so far. I think I read too much true crime. Nothing has jumped out at me yet. Okay, well, maybe yesterday night I did feel a little creeped at the sight of my cat that kept staring obsessively up at our sunroof for almost an hour and would not stop no matter how much I called him. And maybe it didn’t help that the wind was blowing a little hard and I could see the leaves swaying through the curtains as I sat right beside the window. Maybe I have felt a little unsettled walking into my garage for late night clothes washing. I’ll give the King that. And besides I do have about 700 pages of more story to get into. Surely there is more to this tale. I have faith in Mr. Stephen King. If you have not read a book by him…you need to get up off your ass and go right now and get him. And he doesn’t do just horror….he has delved into many genres. Even if an entire novel is not your style…he has quite the collection of short stories. I wouldn’t say he is the best. He is not my most fave…he is more my most familiar. He is unique in that I see his work…I want to give it a try. He is a collectors item kind of writer. He is familiar and yet mysterious. He is over the top and yet right up my alley. He’s not to be described…he’s to be read and experienced.
So yeah there’s that. And then there’s my aching body. I’ve been reading far too much….which means I’ve been snacking far too much…which means I’ve been drinking them high calorie, high priced coffee drinks even further on the too damn much scale and I’m reaaaally starting to notice it when I look at myself in the mirror. I am an emotional eater. I put on weight. A vicious cycle. I gain it…I lose some of it..I gain it right back. On a mission to get back in shape after allowing my body to turn gelatinous on my comfy reading sofa…I decided to kick start my weight loss journey with some intense cardio. Yeah…I did not ease into it. I went hard…hardish. I don’t know what of the 10 moves I did or possibly it was the combination of several but my butt cheeks hurt as all hell. More than any other part of my body, the butt cheeks, SORE AF!! So sore. And go figure…it would happen to someone like me that one particular butt cheek hurts more than the other cause, ya know, I never really do anything right in life…why should working out be one of them. How in the hell do I manage one sore butt cheek??!! And what am I suppose to do now?? Neglect the sore one…focus on the other in the next workout??!!
Ah, yeah…..irrelevant babbling just to fill up blog space…aren’t you glad you subscribed to me.
I suppose I should mention the other reading journey I went on before I dived right into King’s stuff. Woman No. 17 by Edan Lepucki. Talk about racy, on the edge contemporary reading. This is not your standard Jodi Picoult chick-lit, that’s for sure. This story has bite. I don’t need too much over done eroticism…and I seriously could care less if the woman falls for a hunker of a man…but if she does…okay…just don’t make it cheesy.
We are high up in the plush Hollywood Hills with writer Lady Daniels. Lady is looking to find a good nanny for her son because she’s got a memoir to write…and as we all know, kids are assholes and don’t let moms finish anything. Yeah…so Lady hires a woman called S. No not a typo. A woman called S. You know…I get Seal, Madonna, I even understand Prince and his whole strange symbol days….but “S”??!! Come on now. You guessed it (or maybe you didn’t) S is an artist type…and they do strange shit…like call themselves letters from the alphabet. S is going to watch Devin..the kid..and also the teenager, Seth, that doesn’t speak a word of anything. Nothing wrong with him…he is just a teenager I suppose.
Talk about mystery…the whole book gets weird…or rather I just feel weird about it. There’s a series of red flags…like, Lady not really checking S’s references before hiring her because obviously Lady doesn’t give two shits about her kids and who watches them. S is someone that all of a sudden wants to change her life..and that changing involved looking after other peoples children..cause you know, that’s so rewarding. But no matter the strangeness of all that these two women come together. They bond. S becomes a valued member of their little circle…and all is well. There’s def some secrets…but all is well….at first.
This story gets moving…and when it does it doesn’t stop. It goes in all different directions and I don’t know if that was a good thing or bad thing for me. It certainly wasn’t your typical summer read and I’m good with that. I didn’t want a typical summer read. So it not being a Summer read made for a better reading experience. But it has a lot of unanswered questions about her choice of decisions..and I am not sure it would have been better if Lepucki just tied up some of those loose ends that kept nagging at me. I did like the women bonding…I liked how it read…women with bad mothers…move on to make their own bad parenting decisions unintentionally…women struggling but trying and coping with life. Very symbolic to women literature but it’s also relatable. Some of us can’t get enough of that especially if we ourselves go through a lot of angst in our lives, bad experiences, dark pasts, regrets, and struggles. Sometimes we want to read something that we can look at and think…Okay, my life is not so far fetched. I mean it’s fiction…but so are songs and we all feel connections to songs. Same could be said with books…connections.
But then the real drama happens. The far fetched stuff….and it gets interesting…fun even. The whole artist vibe…I mean that’s not for the everyday people…but we don’t always want to read something that depicts an everyday life. We want the everyday life that becomes something grand…something more…something ‘Worldly’. Here’s where the mystery description comes into play. This is not Agatha Christie. It’s not that kind of mystery. We aren’t on an adventure to solve anything really. Mystery in that it is uniquely taking us on a reckless journey…bad decisions and what the outcome could be. Relationships and the adventure that those can sometimes put us on. I’ve read this many times described as a “noir” and I can see that vibe. A little safer…but still that vibe. It’s a self-sabotaging journey….you root for the main character…you root for the women…you want to see the good outcome from the bad decisions. I don’t know if that makes sense. I guess you have to be a single mother to understand that(which I am not…but know many). It’s about motherhood…when motherhood wants to be more than motherhood and step out of it’s motherhood zone every now and then.
I know I mentioned before that this is not a summer read. Scratch that….it’s most def a great summer read. What I actually meant was it’s not that cheesy, summer symbolic, women kicking it in Nantucket getting tans and fantasizing about the pool boy kind of summer read. It’s more like that story’s edgy little rebellious sister.
Did I enjoy this book? I cringed through some of it. I felt there was some loose ends but overall it was fun…it was interesting..it’s worthy of a read.
Can buy anywhere books are sold.
Peace, love, and happy readings!!
Thanks as always to the wonderful peeps over at BloggingForBooks for my free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review to which I gladly and honestly gave.