Archive for the ‘Non-fiction’ Category

BLUE NIGHTS by Joan Didion

BLUE NIGHTS is ostensibly about the loss of a child. In reality, however, it is about the passing of time. Indeed, it is the passing of time that captures all loss, loss of children, of loved ones, and ultimately, of self. It is the classic Heritclitian flow and Ms. Didion has here given herself to it fully, embracing every ripple, bend and eddy. With superhuman strength she resists fighting the current. She does not emote. She does not wax sentimental. Rather she turns her hard-edged and beautiful prose squarely upon her subject matter–as she always has done–and sets to work. Yet even she wonders if the manner in which she practices her art is up for the task.

November 10, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: End-of-Life, Non-fiction, y Award Winning Author

WHAT I TALK ABOUT WHEN I TALK ABOUT RUNNING by Haruki Murakami

In his running journal-cum-memoir, WHAT I TALK ABOUT WHEN I TALK ABOUT RUNNING , titled in obvious homage to Raymond Carver, Haruki Murakami claims that “people basically become runners because they’re meant to” –I know exactly what he means. Runners are different; if only for the fact they think nothing of doubling up socks to run in 20-degree weather while incredulous spouses look on; they brave downpours for the bliss of having paths to themselves; they passionately debate the relative merits of Body Glide vs. Vaseline, bare feet vs. high-tech shoes, real food vs. GU gels. Runners know it’s possible, even enjoyable, to be alone for hours, pushing themselves “to acquire a void” and these quirks of temperament are often enough to form a bond with other distance runners.

October 23, 2011 · Judi Clark · One Comment
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Non-fiction

AT HOME, A SHORT HISTORY OF PRIVATE LIFE by Bill Bryson

What would the world do without Bill Bryson? One simply wants to sit at his knee with a huge grin and listen interminably. I’m an irredeemable skinflint and get all my reading material from the library, but At Home is one book I would seriously like to buy for myself. Considering I have almost no books apart from reference books, my Complete Shakespeare and a Bible I once found in a discard pile somewhere, that’s saying quite a lot.

October 14, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: Facing History, Non-fiction, United Kingdom

LET’S TAKE THE LONG WAY HOME by Gail Caldwell

LET’S TAKE THE LONG WAY HOME is, at its core, a love story. It’s a story of how a close connection with a friend can ground us and provide us with a life worth living. And it’s a story that any woman who has ever had a friend who is like a sister – I count myself among those fortunate women – will understand in a heartbeat.

August 24, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , , ,  · Posted in: Non-fiction, Reading Guide, y Award Winning Author

THE TAO OF TRAVEL by Paul Theroux

How many travelers has Paul Theroux influenced, I wonder? If poets and composers and artists are prodded, pushed and inspired by predecessors and peers, why not travelers?

August 12, 2011 · Judi Clark · One Comment
Tags: ,  · Posted in: Non-fiction, y Award Winning Author

ALTHOUGH OF COURSE YOU END UP BECOMING YOURSELF by David Lipsky

There is that question we asked one another in college: Who in history, if you could meet and talk to whomever you wished, would you select?… Reading Lipsky’s book, ALTHOUGH OF COURSE YOU END UP BEING YOURSELF, reads like a contemporary answer to the “who would you choose” hypothesis. Wallace is gone now, but what if you could just spend a few days with him, even a few hours? What was the man like, really? By his work, he will be remembered. But what of the man?

July 20, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , ,  · Posted in: 2011 Favorites, Non-fiction