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foothills journal #1 - Foothills –– September 29 to December 31, 2008
journal #2

There we were, in what was our "reduce the overhead and find profitability mood" - a small store on the Main Street of a Sierra foothill town. Book shipments came from distributors and publisher alike, ARCs teased us, customers ordered those offbeat titles, and there were all those reviews of those special books. You want to read it all...well...almost. 

 bookmore book journals
bookwhat's John reading NOW? bookVicky's Page
crowing  a book to crow about—a stand out book      not the best or the worst    p   this just didn't do much for me—but no warts

sorry no imagebloggingsdangerous laughterclown girlyoung dick cheney  secret scripture 

open book  From Vaudeville to Drive-In Pioneer by Don "Sleepy" McNally (NF) 12.31.08


open book  Blogging for Dummies by Susannah Gardner & Shane Birley (NF) 12.30.08

 Reading books like this is one of those, I-don't-have-a-real-reason-but-I'm-curious sort of things. It must be my reading addiction. I don't plan on creating or writing a blog, and reading them doesn't hold that much of a charge for me either. But I learned something and Dummies books are always a quick read.


open book Dangerous Laughter by Steven Millhauser (F) 12.28.08
This book
came home with me, and it was very surprising that I had read so many of the thirteen stories in this collection. Yes, I do always watch for his writing in places like the New Yorker, but I had read at least five of these. As to his work, it has such a range of creativity that his short stories are simply put - gems.


open book Clown Girl by Monica Drake (F) 12.26.08

This book is inventive and unique. This was the VERY FIRST novel that I've EVER READ that is about a young female clown and it was interesting.


open book Young Dick Cheney: Great American by Bruce Kluger & David Slavin (F) 12.25.08

I swear that is the very last book I will ever read about Dick. It's a chuckle and a laugh - little did I know that his blood has been replaced by oil, he had his first heart attack at around age four, that he was used as a bloodhound to find oil, and he constantly has shot people in the face. And now I hope to hear nothing else about this man ... Dick who?


little crow The Secret Scripture by Sebastian Barry (F) 12.25.08
This was also a fine book and I want to reflect on it before I write more.


tinkersinvention    annie leibovitz at work 

little crow Tinkers by Paul Harding (F) 12.21.08

Tinkers is a small and very disturbing novel. The writing is beautiful at times and centers around the coming death of George. It is priceless, sometimes the writing is so good it's distracting ... rather like reading Cormac McCarthy.



open book The Invention of Everything Else by Samantha Hunt (F) 12.19.08
I just finished this and it was very clever and makes me want to read some nonfiction about the electricity wars between Westinghouse/General Electric/Edison/Tesla and others in the United States. I'll get back to this and write more when I find a minute or two.


little crow special type of book Annie Leibovitz At Work by Annie Leibovitz (NF) 12.18.08
I'm so impressed by this latest Leibovitz book. The construction and form of this book is just perfect and pleasing...cloth cover, photographic wrapper, nice balance between images and text. Her words enhance her photos, her images explain her thoughts. Annie Leibovitz has been in the center of American photography for many a year. Even people who can't name one photographer, know so many of her photos. Her work has been there as a social touchstone for more than 30 years. She fills the book with many fabulous memories that enhance any one's appreciation of many of her most famous images. She also includes information on the equipment she uses (of course her change to digital) her publishing history and even her Ten Most-Asked Questions. All this, and all those pictures. From what I've seen this year, this is the best book of and on photography published. Vanity Fair: The Portraits would be a good second best photography book...and it includes some of Annie's work. 


open book Deer Hunting with Jesus by Joe Bageant (NF) 12.13.08

open book The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery (F) 12.10.08

open book Shakespeare Wrote for Money by Nick Hornby (NF) 12.7.08


sam adamshollywood foto-rhetoricpete & picklesfibbed bigand the hippos were boiled in their tanks

p  p Dewey by Vicki Myron (NF) 12.5.08
This was just not my kind of a book - even when our two cats were all over me as I read it.


open book Samuel Adams  by Ira Stoll (NF) 12.4.08

It's not just because of beer, but this is the second or third book I've read on Sam and it's amazing how the public has forgotten about this key founding father. He was a fascinating man. We would not have moved to a revolution in the 1770's without this man's tongue and pen moving the Boston rabble and the American public.


open book Hollywood Foto-Rhetoric by Bob Dylan & Barry Feinstein (NF) 12.3.08


open book Pete & Pickles by Berkeley Breathed (F) 12.2.08


open book Edwurd Fudwupper Fibbed Big by Berkeley Breathed (F) 12.2.08


open book And the Hippos We're Boiled in Their Tanks by Jack Kerouac & William S. Burroughs (F) 11.28.08


last lecturesorry no image    sorry no image   winterwoodthe book on the bookshelfleave me alone, i'm reading


open book The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch (NF) 11.26.08


open book  Some New Forgetting by Wendy Patrice Williams (P) 11.24.08 


open book  He Drank Because by Moira Magneson (P) 11.24.08 


little crow Winterwood by Patrick McCabe (F) 11.23.08

Winterwood continues showcasing Patrick McCabe's ability to write some very strange fiction...I'm loving it.


open book The Book on the Bookshelf by Henry Petroski (NF) 11.20.08

This book is a seemingly complete look at the history of on where we put our books. Lots about when books were few & far between and chained to furniture.


open book  Leave Me Alone, I'm Reading by Maureen Carrigan (NF) 11.15.08

LMAIR is a much happier topic, and it's about my favorite habit.


predator statenothing to be frightened ofthomas paine's rights of man limits of powerconstitutional journalpatriotic grace .

open book The Predator State by James K. Galbraith (NF) 11.12.08


open book Nothing to be Frightened Of by Julian Barnes  (NF) 11.8.08


open book  Thomas Paine's 'Rights of Man' by Christopher Hitchens (NF) 11.2.08

Hitchens is always a lightening rod of a highly opinionated figure. In Thomas Paine's 'Rights of Man', his publisher has let him free to write about a giant figure of the American Revolution. Paine was highly opinionated and often found himself at odds with society. Paine's dodge of execution in revolutionary France is quite a story in itself. When it came time to mark his cell for his execution the next day, his rather dim jailer simply marked the wrong side of his cell door. He wasn't taken out and killed, the revolution turned again, Paine was freed, and again found himself a favorite of those in power. Outspoken man writes outspokenly about outspoken man. The language and the ego make it a fun trip through familiar ground for me.


open book The Limits of Power  by Andrew Bacevich (NF) 10.31.08

 Both, Bad Money and The Limits of Power are excellent, thoughtful books that I learned about on PBS's Bill Moyers Journal.


open book  Constitutional Journal by Jeffrey St. John (NF) 10.26.08


open book Patriotic Grace by Peggy Noonan (NF) 10.23.08

This book was a huge surprise to me, I've never been a fan, but I think she has written a very good book for these unique political times. You just can't judge a book by its author.


skunk talkhot flat and crowdedbad money memories of pinecresttaprootjoe's rain


open book Skunk Talk  by Albert Garcia (F) 10.20.08


open book Hot, Flat, and Crowded by Thomas Friedman (NF) 10.17.08


open book Bad Money by Kevin Phillips (NF) 10.11.08


open book Memories of Pinecrest by Patrick A Taylor (NF) 10.9.08


open book Taproot by Indigo Moor (P) 10.6.08


open book Joe's Rain by Quinton Duval (P) 10.5.08 


sorry no image  give me liberty english major


open book Among Summer Pines by Quinton Duval (F) 10.2.08  


open book Give Me Liberty by Naomi Wolf (NF)
This is a true and very complete handbook on how to be an involved citizen in our democracy.
(NF) 10.1.08


little crow  The English Major by Jim Harrison (F) 9.29.08

The English Major is one of the best novels I've read in months! Jim's fans will adore this book, and see that his language has gotten even sparser. Each of his books seem to use fewer word to describe his rich characters and story lines. Harrison's themes do repeat in his work, but I could read him forever. A comfortable shoe made by an excellent craftsman.


here's my review from my BEST READS list for 2008
The English Major by Jim Harrison
If you’re a Jim Harrison fan, you know he brings a world of endearing and puzzled characters, vast landscapes, and a comfort to his special style of fiction. Particular things seem to always populate a Harrison novel. Like bears, motorcycles, and bizarre accidents in a John Irving book, Harrison’s work so often involve an aging man on his own (separated or widowed), road trips, and a strong attention to the opposite sex – some would say he’s oversexed. There’s nothing wrong with that. With each new work, Harrison seems to be able to eliminate more and more words from his work, there’s a fantastic sparseness to his writing. His writing creates a comfort zone for many of his fans. What are the ingredients for a relaxing time? It would be a drink, some comfort food, a faded flannel shirt and a well-worn pair of jeans, a comfortable reading spot in the sun, and a Harrison novel – that’s a good time for me.



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