As usual, I'm way behind in blogging. The pile of books I've read is threatening to topple over, so I'll do some reviews.
I finally started reading the Harry Potter series, all of which I own. I haven't seen any of the movies. So far I've finished volumes 1-3. I'm not "Omigod, I have to start the next one immediately" but I will continue reading. There's lots of magic and whimsy, and I liked the description of Mrs. Weasley's wand sticking out of her apron, and the Dursleys' pathetic Xmas gifts (toothpick, single tissue).
Paul Rudnick's "I'll Take It" is one of my all-time favorites, so I was looking forward to his 1986 novel "Social Disease." Alas, this story about NYC club kids was disappointing. The humor and surrealism I loved in the other book just seemed far-fetched here. Maybe I can't relate to club kids as much as Jewish mothers.
"Little Girls in Pretty Boxes: The Making and Breaking of Elite Gymnasts and Figure Skaters" by Joan Ryan - I love watching gymnastics and figure skating. This 1996 book about the pressures on these athletes seemed a bit dated, though it did come out after the Nancy Kerrigan/Tonya Harding incident. Apparently, few gymnasts or skaters, even at the most elite levels, really profit from the years of hard training. Normal childhoods are impossible, and most come out physically or emotionally damaged. That still didn't stop me from enjoying Stars on Ice, which I recently saw in New Jersey. Beautiful to watch.
"Finder: The True Story of a Private Investigator" by Marilyn Greene and Gary Provost - Greene's 1988 account of her PI career seemed almost quaint. Nowadays, much of her legwork could be accomplished by clicking a few buttons on the Internet. There's still valid emotion to be found in these stories, especially one case that hit close to home.
Oy, barely a dent and I'm already tired. More next time.