Monday, November 17, 2008

Books, Rules, Memes, but no Gardening

There's this book/meme thing going around. I'm not tagging anyone, so don't run away! (umm, yet--at least if you like to read). So Mr. McGregor's Daughter found out about it from both Red Dirt Ramblings and Gardening While Intoxicated, and then invited others to play. Or really, read.

Here are the rules, which I've broken twice:

Grab the nearest book at hand (no fair looking for something intellectual, just what’s within arm’s reach of your keyboard). Turn to page 56, go to the 5th sentence and post your results - include the 2-3 sentences that follow to provide some sort of context. Then turn around and “tag” 5 or so more blogging friends to do the same.

I'm not much for memes, especially since I didn't even know what they were until like a month ago, but I'm pretty fond of books, so this game sounded great. And then I looked at rule 1. And this, no lie, was what was (and still is) next to my computer today--

Two instruction manuals, my sudoku book, and a book about CSI (I'm obsessed with crime drama). Pretty slim pickings.

So I cheated a little--I went up to our old desk top in my office, and had better luck--this very sweet book from my sister, the last book-for-fun that I've read:

It's the memoir of a woman who rescues a standardbred (a trotter, if you follow horseracing at all). Here's p. 56, line 5 ff.--she's adopted the mare and her foal, but has just discovered that the previous owner's vet is going to reclaim the foal to offset a debt:

"Giving out the names and addresses of all the foster homes to the former owner of the horses seemed completely irresponsible to me. What was to prevent him from stealing back the mares, from threatening us, from sending one of his cronies over to beat us up, or from chopping off Georgia's head and sticking under my blanket while I slept?"

If this book were a film, it would be a chickflick. I'm more inclined to the dark side of things--another 10" would have brought you one of the Dexter series (the crime drama thing again)--but I love horses, and this book was heartbreaking.

So, the other rule I'm ignoring? As I promised at the start, no tags. But check out Intoxicated's and Rambling's, and MMD's selections, and I'd love to know what you're reading. As long as it's not a cell phone instruction manual.

And my next post will definitely be about gardening (hmm--does anyone know of any crime dramas with a garden motif? I've often imagined an episode involving foxglove . . .)


Blackswamp_Girl said...

What fun! I might play along... but even if I don't get around to it, I must say that your submission was a lot of fun. :)

Gail said...

I decided I wanted to play, too. Won't these kinds of activities b e fun in winter! gail

tina said...

HA! A good drama with a gardening twist? Not sure, but Paul James sometimes has some mysteries in the garden on his show.

I do know of an excellent book that has a garden theme and is a mystery. Are you ready? Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose. I am positive you know it. It is one of my favorite mysteries with a slant to it. Not reading it now. I have the last book of Stephen King's Gunslinger series and need to start reading it so I can finally finish the series, it is the one on my coffee table looking at me accusingly. That is it for me I guess. ttyl

Alan said...

I'll play too,with your rules of no tags...

the only book on my desk happened to be a book by Cherry Hill, checked out to address our current pony problem.

I looked at page 56, following your directions, and found two options, the side bar and the text. The text took us into the land of zoning regulations which didn't resonate with me at all, so I opted for the sidebar. Here is the text: "when you see a beautiful pasture, your neighbors might see a field of weeds and manure. Appearances matter when neighbors are close, so mow, paint, and repair as needed.

Buddha couldn't have written a more appropriate set of sentences.

Cameron (Defining Your Home) said...

I'm always too far ahead on my blogging for memes (and syndicated, so if the posts get published by the Chicago Sun-Times or Reuters, the context is really lost!)

The book next to me is the NC DOT book "Wildflowers on North Carolina Roadsides." The book ends on page 29! My camera manual is beside me! All of my reading material is in my garden room and I "work" from my wireless notebook in the family room.


Rose said...

This is a fun meme, and I did it once before. But with little going on in the garden right now, I like having another topic to write about:)
I love mysteries, too; right now I'm reading one by James Burke, whose protagonist is a New Orleans cop. It's not my favorite, but I can't seem to find the time to read whole sections at once, which sometimes makes it harder to get into a book. Kathy Reichs and Patricia Cornwell are two of my favorites, though.

Hmmm, I would have thought you would have some Jane Austen or even Virginia Woolf on your nightstand:)

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

Thanks for the link love! Your mention of Foxglove brings to mind one of Ellis Peter's Brother Cadfael mysteries, "Monkshood." It involves a murder using a poison made from Monkshood. Many of these mysteries have to do with plants & flowers as the main character, Brother Cadfael, is the abbey herbalist. The series was on PBS a while back with Derek Jacobi.

Cosmo said...

Kim and Gail, I certainly hope you'll play--and no fair waiting until you leave just the right book by your computer!

Tina, I'm embarrassed to say that I don't know who Paul James is--is he a writer himself? But yes, I do know and love Umberto Eco (actually, he had an essay--about Victor Hugo, sadly, and not gardens or mysteries)--in that collection I was reviewing.

Alan, Glad you stopped by--I look forward to reading more about your new pony--or I guess it will soon by ponies, won't it?

Cosmo said...

Cameron, good for you for being ahead--I don't think I've ever been. Ever. Anyway, I was in the same situation when I read MMD's post yesterday--I seriously had been sitting in the living room trying to figure out the disconnect between our cell phones and our navigation system, and all of the books I love are in other rooms.

Rose, I've never read Kathy Reichs--I was going to ask you if she's good, but I'll assume since you like her that she is! Burke can be kind of gruesome for my taste (this coming from a CSI addict, but what I see in CGI is often much less worse than what I can imagine). Anyway, lots of Woolf and Austen on my bookshelves, but not often on my nightstand--I travel light at night.

MMD, thanks for the recommendation!
I actually think Salix has some Ellis Peters--we're amazed sometimes to discover what we already have in the house. (I'm, umm, not very organized . . .)

tina said...

Cosmo, Paul James is the Gardener Guy from Gardening by the Yard on HGTV. He is funny! A super good gardener and all around good guy. You can find his show info on HGTV. Sorry!

Cosmo said...

Oh, Tina, no apologies! I don't watch much HGTV, but I'll check out Mr. James. Did you finish your paper? your Stephen King book? Loved the pictures of you, btw, on Walk2Write's posting!

TC said...

My post on MMD's site regarding the read involved Plato's Republic. Much too deep, even for one sentence. I think the context made it worse.

Right now I'm reading Chaim Potok's "The Chosen."

Roses and Lilacs said...

Hi Cosmo, LOL, I'm a Dexter fan too. Who would have thunk a serial killer would be so appealing.

Your book sounded great til I got to the 'heartbreaking' part or your description. I'm tired of crying over animals and books about animals. Why can't the be happy and hopeful?

Cosmo said...

Hi, TC--Thanks for stopping by. I teach Plato's Republic (well, Book X anyway), so on another day, it may well have been what popped up.

Marnie--"Chosen by a Horse" is touted as a feel good book--the woman comes through things ok--but I cried all the way through. You might steer clear unless you need something cathartic. Hope you're well. And warm.