Dec 232010
 

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Getting  Mother’s Body

Suzan-Lori Parks

So while bothering some poor staff member, probably my administrative assistant, in the back office the other day I see this jazzy black bound book with old west typeface writing just sitting there all lonely and forlorn on a book truck.  I pick it up.  “Hmmmm… The title sounds interesting,”  I think.  See, the glorious reading required for my college degrees killed my desire to read anything other than the latest statuses of my friends on Facebook or perhaps the blurb on the TV Guide.  But things are different now.  My staff forces me to read fiction.  So, I pick up this beautiful book for further investigation.

The story revolves around Billy Beede, a pregnant, unwed young woman from rural Texas in 1963.  Her lover, a traveling salesman from a faraway town who goes around selling coffins, promises he’ll marry her on “Thursday.”  Billy tracks him down only to meet his wife and his children. Billy is left in quite a predicament, and decides to seek out the treasure buried with her mother’s body, Willa Mae Beede, two states over in Arizona.  Having no resources of her own, Billy steals her mother’s lover, Dill Smile’s truck.  Her Aunt June and Uncle Teddy load up for the adventure, as well, and they all dream of the life Willa Mae’s treasure will bring them.  Billy, Aunt June, and Uncle Teddy are immediately pursued by Dill and Laz, a young man enamored of Billy who has set his heart to be her husband.  The ensuing adventures of the Beede family are enriching, and although they’re not always bright and sunny and funny and cute, the underlying theme is the importance of family and friends, and finding the inner strength to pursue and achieve the hopes and dreams of your heart.

Billy’s life is a hard one, and Parks does an excellent job of representing the experiences of the characters’ 1960’s rural Texas town world through their multiple points of view.  As the chapters progress, they are all from a different vantage point to the story and through the eyes of all the parties involved.  This unique insight offers an in-depth and multi-faceted view of the story as it unfolds.

Getting Mother’s Body is a great read, enjoyable from the beginning to the end, and will leave you with a smile and wanting more.  You can find it on our fiction shelves, among other wonderful reads.  : )

Dec 092010
 

Oh No She Didn’t
by Clinton Kelly

So if you know me, you know I’m not a fashionista.  At all.  I barely see after brushing my hair and I’m loathe to take off my corral boots, and I only recently bought a jacket for myself in order to set aside the hand-me-down camo jackets my husband no longer uses for hunting.  So when this book came into the library, I mostly picked it up because of the funny title.  I wanted to see fashion faux pas like what you see on the People of Walmart website.  However, this book was not like that, and it totally sucked me in!

Clinton Kelly does an excellent job of offering fashion advice in a funny, approachable, and sensible form.  The chapters of the book are no more than a few paragraphs long and are straight to the point.  Kelly states his fashion tip, and explains why the tip is relevant and why it is important.  And unlike most fashion magazine articles and ads, Clinton Kelly chooses tips that are completely relevant, classic, and relate to various body styles.  He explains why you want to consider skirt length style in relation to how your body looks, instead of simply stating what the fashion trend dictates.

Kelly is witty and enjoyable to read and offers style tips that even I, in my casual, helter-skelter approach to dressing myself, find relevant and valuable.  I like quick and easy dressing with a minimal of fuss, but I found as I read that I made a checklist of things to think about when shopping in the future, and things that I want consider while going through my closet in order to appear a bit more put together.  Kelly’s suggestions are timeless and relevant, simple and effective, and made for any body style.

You can find Oh No She Didn’t on our new book shelves with the rest of our new nonfiction materials.  Come check it out today!

jez~