wily wiley reads.

     it's been a few weeks since a 'wily wiley reads' post on the blog.  once the weather gets warmer i tend to read a whole lot more.  i actually finished these four books almost a month ago, but haven't gotten around to writing them all up.  since finishing the four books above, i've devoured two more wonderful reads, which will come in the next installment of this series.  writing these reviews is one of my favorite parts of my blog and i'd love to find out whether this is something others enjoy.  i'm also up for any ideas on how i could do it a bit differently.  i'd love to hear your feedback.

her last death by susanna sonnenberg :: this may be one of the most compelling memoirs i have ever read.  it was only after about 150 pages that i realized the book was a work of non-fiction and i found it hard to believe the tales i was reading could be true.  the story of a woman trying to live outside of her mother's shadow, sonnenberg's account of her childhood is both fascinating and appalling.  her mother is a charasmatic and beautiful woman who is as lovely as she is troubled and sonnenberg tells the stories of drug abuse, seduction and a mother-daughter relationship filled with complications.  i would absolute recommend this memoir.

bossy pants by tina fey :: i will try my hardest not to go on and on about how much i love tina fey.  she might be the most perfect woman ever.  this book is hysterical!  her self-deprecation and bizarre sarcasm fall perfectly in line with my own.  the book starts with with tina fey recalling the awkward days of her youth and continues into her television days.  if you're a 30 rock, saturday night live, or just plain old comedy fan, this is the book for you.

vanishing and other stories by deborah willis ::  i have to admit that i rarely enjoy modern books of short stories.  my friend lin encouraged me to give this one a try and promised that it would exceed my expectations.  it did.  willis tells stories in a way that made me feel like she understood things i had never heard another person verbalize.  her writing is raw and honest.  many of the stories talk about loss, death and disconnection.  i reread a number of the passages because they mirrored emotions and feelings that brought back memories from some of my own experiences.  a great read for quick stories before bedtime or on the way to work.

the memory keeper's daughter by kim edwards :: this is another great example of a bestseller that i'm years behind on reading.  edwards tells the story of a doctor who is forced to deliver his own baby on the night of a blizzard.  it is only during the delivery that he realizes he is delivering twins and that one of the twins was born with down syndrome.  the doctor sends the baby away and tells his wife that she died at birth.  little does he know that the nurse he gives the task of transporting the baby to an institution actually takes the baby and raises it as her own.  the book goes on to explain how the lives of all of those involved in this stormy night are changed forever.  i found the story slow at some points and didn't find myself truly engaged by some of the major characters.  overall, i did think it was a great story and i loved the descriptive nature of the writing and the way the story moved through the decades.

     as always, i would love to hear your recommendations for good reads.  next on my list are the help and the hunger games.  what have you read lately?  what do i need to read?


  1. Gianna - Santa Barbara, CAMay 5, 2011 at 10:35 PM

    I think you'd really like Mary McCarthy's The Group. It is my favorite book about female friendships in the 1930s and 1940s.

    And, Wiley, I look forward to these book posts! The more the better!

  2. i like these book posts. keep 'em coming! plus, with summer on the way, i need some good beach reads and there's nothing worse than picking up a book and hating it. at least i'll know they've been pre-screened first :)

  3. Ooh -- The Help and The Hunger Games = both a lot of fun.

    I recently listened to Bossypants (narrated by Tina herself and was IN LOVE with it entirely).

    May I recommend Olive Kitteridge, Little Bee, The Paris Wife, and Johannes Cabal the Necromancer -- I think you'd enjoy them all.