Thursday, March 22, 2007

Books I'm engrossed in

Life of Pi by Yann Martel (Man Booker Prize Award). First 33 chapters of Part 1 are interesting. Main character Piscine Patel gets ribbed about his name ("Pissing"). Yann Martel approximates the Hindi cadence of speaking in his characters. Intriguing discussion on Hinduism, Islam and Christianity when Piscine (later changed to Pi) finds wisdom in these religions and settles the scores by declaring "I just want to love God." There's a mention of Manila Zoo in one of the chapters. I can't wait to start Part 2 . . .
Part 2 opens with a shipwreck, Pi and his family decide to relocate to Canada and sold off the animals in the zoo his family runs. So the boat they'd boarded sinks. His parents and brother missing, Pi finds himself sharing a lifeboat with a tiger, zebra and hyena (animals bound for zoos elsewhere).

Barbra - The Way She Is by Christopher Andersen. I bought my copy at Booksale SM Baguio City. Another in the long list of unauthorized biographies of the musical icon. There are new insights though to mark the usual milestones in Barbra's life (her second wedding, failed love affairs/flings, son Jason, etc.), although she remains an enigma to us mortals. Until SHE writes her own life story, we will never know for sure. As i flipped through the account of her life in the 90s and the present, the irony struck me that while she is a gay icon, her initial reaction to her son's homosexuality left much to be desired. However in the last live concerts she did, Barbra made sure to show how she loved Jason by singing Not While I'm Around (from the musical Sweeney Todd): No one's gonna hurt you,
no one's gonna dare; Others can desert you, not to worry, whistle, I'll be there . . .

Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs. Chapters are bite-sized but compelling. Burroughs paints a very contemporary memoir with broad strokes of dark humor (just when I am about to cringe at what I am reading, he goes for my funny bone). Just as he, as a kid, envisions to head a beauty empire, I flip to the inside back cover of the paperback and see the the author's bald pate. And i'm hooked!

1 comment:

rolly said...

These are quite interesting. Too bad, I have not read too many books lately. Lack of time, for one, and failing eye sight, the other.