The Weight of Him

The Weight

 

I have wanted to read this book ever sense I heard about it on a book podcast, so when it was released here in the US I went out and bought a copy. Then I pitched it to the book club and it was chosen for the book club to read last month.

The Weight of Him by Ethel Rohan was an amazing book about a man Billy who’s son is a victim of suicide. The book is about survival, the guilt they face, and what spurns a survivor on. I know that when each person reads a book, what they get from it is different, and I understand that for some people suicide is something that is not talked about. However I happen to think the more we talk about mental illness the more we can get it out in the open the more people will see that it can be treated, and it is not a sin.

My partner looked up the statistics on suicide rates in Ireland and found out that Ireland has the highest rate of suicide in Europe. This is not what I started to write about but I thought that information like that needed to be out there.

This was a book that I could not put down, I could feel the anxiety and the stress that this family is going through. I would like to say that this might be the best part of the book the way that she feels out who the different generations on the view of suicide. Half the family thinks it should be hidden away, the other 3/4th s want to ignore what happened only Billy wants to bring light to this epidemic.

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The Kolchak Papers: The Original Novels

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When I watched TV one of the things that I would watch on Nick at Night was The Night Stalker and The Night Strangler staring Darrin McGavin. I did not realize that these movies were based on books. I found The Kolchak Papers :The Original Novels by Jeff Rice when I was looking for a new audio book. So I downloaded it to my Libby, and started listening to it the next day.

The books were written in the mid 1970’s and a few things about it I found wonderfully amazing. First was the change in technology no cell phones they had to find a phone booth or someplace to make the call. They had typewriters, copy machines technology has changed the world.

Then there was the fact that in the books Kolchak was very open to people who were different. In one of the stories there is a Drag Queen and instead of being a typical ’70’s tough guy Kolchak treated that person with respect.

I did listen to this at night in the dark before going to sleep for the night. The vampire was one creepy dude. I felt sorry for the Strangler if you listen or read this you will see why.

This also had a very pulp fiction feel to it, one that also sounded like someone reading off a documentary. That was amazing as well, knowing that a pulp fiction story has the feel of a true story.

The Bone Mother

The Bone Mother

My first book for RIP was The Bone Mother by David Demchuk. What a wonderful cover, it is dark and spooky all at the same time. This is the first novel by Mr. Denchuk and I hope that it will not be the last. This was such and amazing take on the mythical creatures of Eastern Europe. This book includes Rusalka, Vovkulaka, Strigoi, Dvoynik, and of course The Bone Mother.

I loved the story of Nicolai this told the story of the  Vovkulaka they way it was explained what a sad story. There is the story of a Golem and a stolen home.  There are just to many to put into a short blog post.

Each chapter is a new character and each character has a photograph.  The photographs were taken by Costica Acsint between 1935 and 1945 and they are now being preserved by the Ialomita County History Museum. This adds to the book, to see faces of the the people who lived and believed in these stories.

For me the other cool thing about this book was that it included LGTBQI characters. There is one about the Green Girls, that was just amazing to see in a book. The only fault that I have with this book is me. I do not know enough about the tales from the Romanian/Ukrainian border.

Cook County ICU

The full title of this book is Cook County ICU: 30 Years of Unforgettable Patients and Odd Cases  written by Cory Franklin. This was an audio book that I borrowed from the library for a trip to Washington. These stories were told from the perspective of a doctor and there for had to be well with in the laws of HIPPA.

I do like medical memoirs more from a nurses perspective, and that might be because I worked in nursing for 20+ years. I understand their point of view a bit better, their willingness to go into the gross, the things that are what make humans, well human.

I felt that Dr. Franklin pulled a lot of his punches in writing this book. That he glossed over the things that make us human. The insight into the way an MD’s mind processes things was very interesting. If you have not read a medical memoir and want to give one a try this might be the one to get started with.

Readers Imbibing Peril XII

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For me one of the first signs of autumn is the sign up for Readers Imbibing Peril. In the past is has been hosted by Carl over at Stainless Steel Droppings. I am not sure why he has passed the torch on the Estella (Estella’s Revenge) and Heather and Andi ( My Capricious Life) but I am glad to see that it is still up and running.

This year I have six weeks off of work during September so I have decided to do:

Peril the First:
Read four books, any length, that you feel fit (our very broad definitions) of R.I.P. literature. It could be Stephen King or Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Shirley Jackson or Tananarive Due…or anyone in between.
Now usually I have a stack of books all ready to go for this. I love curling up with a good scary book, a hot cuppa, and a warm blanket as the sun sets earlier every day. Who knows I might be tempted to try a pumpkin latte.  I do have a stack of books, however I have not sorted them into categories for this event, and as I have discovered podcast and book podcast at that my reading list is getting longer.
For rules and to sign up for RIPXII check out Estella’s Revenge or My Capricious Life. It looks like I am going to need to take a trip to the library!!

 

24 in 48

  1. Where in the world are you reading from this weekend? Western United States
  2. Have you done the 24in48 readathon before? Nope and it has been slow to start today.
  3. Where did you hear about the readathon, if it is your first? Dewey
  4. What book are you most excited about reading this weekend? Sex and Rockets the Occult world of Jack Parsons
  5. Tell us something about yourself. I hate summer
  6. Remind us where to find you online this weekend. Twitter @SRGGF, and my blog

Got a very slow start today on reading, I woke up in a bad mood. Then had to do hours of running around. It looks like I am going to be reading late into the night to catch up. Coffee is going to be my friend.

The Bell Witch

The Bell Witch: An American Haunting

I first heard the story of The Bell Witch on the podcast Lore. If you like spooky strange Lore is a great podcast. So one night when I could not sleep I was looking at audio books. When I can’t sleep if I find the right story it will short out my brain, and  let me sleep. As I was perusing the library for an audio book I found a version of the Bell Witch written by Brent Monahan .

To be entirely honest if I read this I might not have finished it. The book it written in a letter style, a father writing to his daughter, to tell her the story of her mother and how the haunting effected her family.

If you do a search on the Bell Witch it is debated on whether this haunting is a true story or not. Either way it has been around for years, and it is still a point of interest in Tennessee.

Other then the podcast this is the only version of this story that I have read. I do not know if the ending is anywhere near what really happened or not. It was amazing to listen to. I am going to start listening to more audio books, my office is moving and I am going to become a super commuter.

My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell you She’s Sorry

My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You Shes Sorry

This is the first book that I have read by Fredrik Backman, and I cannot wait to read more. My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry was not what I expected it to be. I honestly thought when I read the cover blurb that this book was more about fantasy, and we were going to find out that her grandmother was a fairy godmother.

I picked this book for our book club to read and the reviews on it were mixed, a few people could not get past the simple language or the style that it was written in. I believe that they said “adults should never try to write as a child”. When I picked this I wanted something light and fun, we have been reading some very heavy stuff and it was a nice change.

I did not know that this book was not English in origin and the book had a very British feel to me. I was not alone in this the language of the book was one of the things we spent some time on in our discussion.

Back to Grandmother in a way she was a fairy godmother, at least to those around her and how she effected their lives. In the book there was one character that I did not like that was Britt-Marie. I did feel sorry for her, but I did not like her.

This book was well worth the read it was enjoyable, light, and just a bit stressful. The grandmother told amazing stories. It was a stories about stories in stories.

 

 

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet

I love reading books about places I have been, and areas that I know. Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford covers all of that.  It takes place in Seattle and tells the story of a man revisiting his past and his escape from the internment camps. It tells of first loves lost and found, family secrets, and healing a family.

It was an amazing book and I learned that the Puyallup Fair Grounds were used as a temporary camp for the Japanese during WWII. I have been there many times and did not know that, it puts a different perspective on the fair. That a place of fun and enjoyment was once used as a prison.  I don’t know if I will ever be able to look at the buildings there the same way again.

The Paramount hotel actually exists the items found in the basement are not only a time capsule but a reminder of what is lost, and the lives disrupted. This book is just a glimpse of what was lost in history because of a fear.

 

Tom’s Midnight Garden

Tom’s Midnight Garden by Philippa Pearce has been on my TBR list for a while. After I read The Secret Garden I have had a thing for hidden garden books.

Tom is sent away to stay with an aunt and uncle while his brother recovers from the mumps. FYI this was written in 1958 and won the Carnegie Medal from the Library Association. The house that Tom’s aunt and uncle live in has been converted into flats and there is not a garden to play in.

This is a time slip book there Tom can slip back in time to play in the original garden and meet the a few of the people who live there. It is cute, a bit preachy, and very much has the ideas of the 1950’s written into the book . I borrowed this one from the library and did not take a picture of it before I took it back.

I would get this book for a small child my son would have read it in first grade, however it is written for someone with a 5th grade reading level.