Review: A Lost Lady by Willa Cather
8 months ago
"But woven into the story of cruelty and brutality is another theme: that of the few women who fought boldly and tirelessly, in spite of shaved heads and inedible food and humiliations of every kind, to retain some remnant of human decency and dignity; the story of women who shared their last scrap of bread with the dying, who wrote birthday poems to keep up their fellows' spirits, who sang the 'Marseillaise' on the march to work when they new it could only bring them a violent beating. It is this account of unflagging courage and endurance that given An Ordinary Camp its special, compelling quality." (book back flap)This is definitely a moving book. I cried from the depth of my soul... My sincere appreciation Mlle Maurel for sharing your life with us.
"Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has survived the Hunger Games twice. But now that she’s made it out of the bloody arena alive, she’s still not safe. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge. Who do they think should pay for the unrest? Katniss. And what’s worse, President Snow has made it clear that no one else is safe either. Not Katniss’s family, not her friends, not the people of District 12. Powerful and haunting, this thrilling final installment of Suzanne Collins’s groundbreaking The Hunger Games trilogy promises to be one of the most talked about books of the year." (Goodreads)As few of you know, I had possession of this books days before it's release but was unfortunate enough to not have read book #2 yet so it did me no good. Well, that's not completely true, I was giddy and thrilled at securing a copy. Though late in coming, I caught on with the excitement of this book series. And what an awesome series it is!! It's books like these that make reading fun and exciting.
"Against all odds, Katniss Everdeen has won the annual Hunger Games with fellow district tribute Peeta Mellark. But it was a victory won by defiance of the Capitol and their harsh rules. Katniss and Peeta should be happy. After all, they have just won for themselves and their families a life of safety and plenty. But there are rumors of rebellion among the subjects, and Katniss and Peeta, to their horror, are the faces of that rebellion. The Capitol is angry. The Capitol wants revenge." (Goodreads)Although I enjoyed the first book more, this installment still delivered excitement. Full of twist and turns that had me ooh-ing and aah-ing. It introduced more characters that helped to continue the independence vs interdependence issue. Because the games are back and this time it's the 75th so that means it's Quarter Quell time (every 25yrs)! A huge reminder from the Capitol to the people of Panem that even the strongest cannot overpower them, thus dissipate any action of uprising.
"Catherine Madison is headed West with a suitcase full of cash. She's just left the only home she's ever known, a small town in Nebraska, after things fell apart with the only man she has ever known, her husband, Thomas. She's also left behind her deepest, most shameful secrets--among them a dysfunctional family she's never quite been able to escape and a marriage whose most intimate moments have plagued her with self doubt. On the road, she's going to become a new person. Or so she thinks. But leaving everything behind isn't as easy as she had hoped. When she reaches Las Vegas, Catherine meets the beautiful but damaged Valka, a single woman struggling with her own painful history. Against a backdrop of casino lights and celebrity-impersonator shows, the two women forge an unexpected friendship, and as their bond deepens, Catherine is compelled to reveal what she has never told anyone before. With Valka's help, Catherine realizes that if she is ever to overcome her past, she must finally uncover the truth about her family, come to understand what destroyed her marriage, and prevent her troubled younger sister from repeating her mistakes."My quote-ables:
"...you should have more respect for your insides. The fact that you can conceive, that your body works in that way. You should not be careless about your power. There are people who would kill to have that power. You should appreciate it. It's your body. You do what you want with it. But you respect it." --Valka, pg 271-272
"This magnificent new novel has a similarly extraordinary scope and the same capacity to amaze, entertain, and bewitch the reader. A tour de force of metaphysical reality, it is powered by two remarkable characters: a teenage boy, Kafka Tamura, who runs away from home either to escape a gruesome oedipal prophecy or to search for his long-missing mother and sister; and an aging simpleton called Nakata, who never recovered from a wartime affliction and now is drawn toward Kafka for reasons that, like the most basic activities of daily life, he cannot fathom. Their odyssey, as mysterious to them as it is to us, is enriched throughout by vivid accomplices and mesmerizing events. Cat and people carry on conversations, a ghostlike pimp employs a Hegel-quoting prostitute, a forest harbors soldiers apparently unaged since World War II, and rainstorms of fish (and worse) fall from the sky. There is a brutal murder, with the identity of both victim and perpetrator a ridddle--yet this, along with everything else, is eventually answered, just as the entwined destinies of Kafka and Nakata are gradually revealed, with one escaping his fate entirely and the other given a fresh start on his own."My quote-ables:
"It begins with a body. On a clear day in winter, the battered corpse of Crispin Salvador is pulled from the Hudson River --taken from the world is the controversial lion of Philippine literature. Gone, too, is the only manuscript of his final book, a work meant to rescue him from obscurity by exposing the crimes of the Filipino ruling families. Miguel, his student and only remaining friend, sets out for Manila to investigate. To understand the death, Miguel scours his teacher's life, piecing together Salvador's story through his poetry, interviews, novels, polemics, and memoirs. The result is a rich and dramatic family saga of four generations, tracing the Spanish, the Americans, and the Filipinos themselves. Finally, we are surprised to learn that this story belongs to young Miguel as much as to his lost mentor, and we are treated to an unhindered view of a society caught between reckless decay and hopeful progress."