BOOK & BLOG
June 19, 2012
Books of the Week:
I’m afraid I’ve had Lisa Lutz’s book on my shelves for a long time. I’m also ashamed to say that instead of having a To Be Read book pile, I have a TBR bookcase. And it’s full. I feel both terror and pride when I look at all those books. I’ll never run out, but I’m way behind. Anyway, back to Revenge of the Spellmans. If you enjoy nutty-family books, you’ll love Lutz’s private eye novel. The Spellmans are a little more seriously nutty than, say, Stephanie Plum’s family, in that they all spy on one another relentlessly. We see the story through the eyes of Isabel, whose parents want her to take over their detective agency . . . as soon as she finishes her court-ordered therapy sessions. Isabel and her complicated life are good, if bitter, fun, and the Spellman family is unforgettable.
Mary Janice Davidson’s very funny Betsy series has gotten progressively darker and more complicated with every book, but still manages to work well. The character of the admittedly not-too-bright Betsy Taylor, queen of the vampires, is one of the great inspirations of modern paranormal literature. In Undead and Unstable, the time-travelling Betsy is struggling against the terrible future she has seen, with some very strange help from her horrible future self. Entertaining as always.
My daughter in law gave me a grandmother shower this week, and I can’t say when I’ve been more surprised and touched. An eclectic gathering of friends from all the branches of my life were waiting for me in my house after I went out for a pedicure with a church friend of mine. (She’d been carefully briefed, of course.) I came home to find the house decorated, food out ready to eat, and a pile of presents.
Though I’m not so big on surprises, I loved this one. And I’ll tell you why: (1) I am super excited about the soon-to-arrive grandbaby, and (2) I love to open presents. So I didn’t mind walking into my kitchen to find it full of people on a Saturday afternoon. I was pretty darn excited.
There’s something wonderful about expecting a new addition to the family, and I hope I get to experience this wonder several more times. (Kids, if you read this, yes, I’m hinting.) And, as Paula pointed out, everyone likes buying baby stuff. Blankets, hooded towels, toys, books, diapers, sleepers, crib sheets . . . it’s all cute and it’s all for a baby.
Though my life is often busier than I want it to be, I can hardly wait to make room in it for a new family member. It seems only yesterday, weirdly, that I embarked on the huge unknown adventure of being a mother and responsible for the life of another human being.
Thankfully, he turned out to be a great young man, and he will become a father in less than two weeks. Now I see how the effort we put into raising him (gladly, gratefully) will trickle down into another generation, and I realize that we were the model of parenting he has to go by, for good or for ill. I hope we did our job: at the same time, I am sure we did the best we could.
Now it’s up to the parents-to-be.
© 2012 Charlaine Harris