Monday, July 12, 2010

Monday Sunday Salon - Again

Spent the weekend working like crazy to try to get caught up on things--most particularly laundry--as we are heading out of town as soon as I get home from work on Tuesday for a trip to the Black Hills. Along the way, we'll be stopping to see pioneer landmarks Chimney Rock and Scottsbluff and Fort Robinson in northwest Nebraska. All of these places are places my children should long ago have seen, as close as we live to them. I've seen them--I wonder if anyone would mind if I sat in the car reading while everyone else goes off sightseeing?

I've added two sites to my list of favorites (tab at the bottom of my header). Elle magazine's website has a blog titled "Lit Life: A Blog for Fiction Readers With Great Tastes." The picture above comes from it. This is a bookshelf in Chernobyl 24 years after the nuclear accident in 1986. I've also added "The Millions." How in the world did I not know about this site before? Emily St. John Mandel ("Last Night in Montreal" and "The Singer's Gun") has an article posted there about her favorite apocalyptic novels.

In doing some research for an article, I came across an article on titled "Why Women Read More Than Men." This article contends that under the circumstances, Ernest Hemingway might well be considered "chick lit" given that women are really the primary readers of fiction. The theory there is that women are just hardwired to be more empathetic than men and possess a greater emotional range making fiction more appealing to women than men. Any thoughts on that?

Coming up next week is my review of Claire Cook's "Seven Year Switch." Here's a little teaser on that one for you.

Now the big packing question for the trip: what books and how many to take? For some strange reason, my husband seems to think that five it too many. I, respectfully, disagree. How many books do you like to take when you travel and what kind do you prefer to read on vacation?


  1. We always take more books than we need on a trip. But adding the weight is starting to make me think more and more of a kindle type device!

    But relatedly, my philosophy for books on trips is selection by weight! Then I try to include books I want to read mixed in with books I want to make myself read so that when I'm out of books with no resources around, I'll be forced to do it!

  2. That picture of the ruined books makes my heart hurt a little bit!! I also would agree that the reason women read more fiction is due to their ability to empathize, though I do know a few men who read lots of fiction as well (and one who even read a little chick-lit!)

    As far as the books for vacation go, I would say five is a good number. I always bring more than I can read because I would hate to run through everything and have nothing to read, and also because if a book isn't working for me, I want to have alternatives!

    I hope you have a great trip and get lots read!

  3. My last 3-4 day trip I took 5 books plus my kindle (just in case). I'd much rather be safe than sorry. I usually bring a mix of books that are on my nightstand and bigger ones on my TBR list. It depends on the vacation.

    Interesting NPR article, although I can't say that more women reading fiction equals fiction being chick lit. Is empathy and emotion the only reason for fiction? What about historically?

  4. Your trip sounds like its going to be fun! Sad to say, my last trip was 3 years ago, and I took 5 books: John Steinbeck's Travels with Charley, Marcus Zusak's The Book Thief, Saul Bellow's Henderson the Rain King, George Eliot's Middlemarch, and Norton Juster's The Phantom Tollbooth. I had the most fun reading Travels with Charley, partly because Salinas, Cannery Row, the National Steinbeck Center (where I got to see Steinbeck's camper, Rocinante), and visiting Steinbeck's grave were among my destinations. So as for your question about what kind of books I prefer to read, I guess I'll say I like the kind that have a connection to the place you are visiting. Even though the book takes place all around the US, having that story in mind made that section of my trip so magical. Sorry my comment got so long - I got carried away in my memories!

  5. I am perpetually behind in my laundry! Have fun on your trip.

  6. Have a great time on your trip! can't wait to see some pictures :)

  7. Lisa, hope u have a great vacation. I can relate to your "which books to take dilemma"..LOL Have fun!

  8. So you're not an ereader fan yet eh? I am bringing my iPad to the Wyoming ranch we go to every year as I read so much and get tired of lugging the books. I went to the Million site and there was indeed a lot to love.

  9. Enjoy your trip!!!

    And five is definitely not too many - even six is good!!

    Heck, sometimes I bring four or five books with me to work, because who knows what I'll want to read within a whole 12-hour shift...

    Have fun!

  10. I hope you have a great trip Lisa. Now I'd take my reader with me which has tons of books but I'd probably take a couple extra paper ones just in case. My philosophy is you can never have too many - you need something to choose from. Besides, do they really take that much room? lol.

  11. I haven't been to the Black Hills since I was a kid. My husband and i were just talking about it, maybe going again.

    have fun!

  12. I took way more than 5 books along on my recent trip...but we drove, so weight didn't matter. I had a tote bag full of books, because I have to have options!