Categories
Adult Fiction Books

Towne Book Center Book Club Unsaid by Neil Abramson

This month’s book club pick is Unsaid by Neil Abramon.

13526293

I’ll admit I was a little skeptical at first about the book.  Based on talk from other bookclubbers, I wasn’t sure if I would like it.  A veterinarian who comes back as a dog? Been there, done that. I love dogs and dogs in books but after reading Garth Stein’s The Art of Racing in the Rain, I wasn’t sure if the topic could be done properly.  To be sure, there were parts of Stein’s books that I loved; like the dog constantly asking for THUMBS!! But there was too much car racing talk to suit me. Anyway, I jumped in to Unsaid.

It was nice. Nicey nice. Not knock your socks off great, but a nice, gentle book club read.  If you love animals, you’ll appreciate being on this side of the fence after you watch your pets function after you’ve left them.  The author tries to include a little Temple Grandin ala Autism/Asperger spectrum, animal activism, animal testing, breast cancer, loss of a spouse, and law all in one book.  That’s alot to accomplish.

The author really makes you think about when is a sentient animal a person or a non person?  Not an argument I want to get into, for sure, but one that makes you think.  If you’re like me, you might jokingly say “dogs are people too!” knowing that they’re not.  But a chimp? A Monkey? I dont know.  If you know anything about me you know I love all animals except snakes and primates. Their human like qualities give me the willies. They ARE cute though, except when they fling poo at you. I don’t like the idea of them suffering through lab experiments and suffering.  I’m not even a big fan of the zoo or the circus.  But I digress…

Three cute doggies, a pig, two horses, 6 cats, and a bereft husband.  What more do you need?

Categories
award winners Diversity

I Love Sharon Creech!

“Don’t judge a man until you’ve walked two moons in his moccasins.” (Walk Two Moons)

So in the midst of all I’ve been doing (prepping for new job and getting number 1 son ready to leave home for college) I’ve been reading The Wanderer by Sharon Creech.  While I was reading The Wanderer I was reminded of another of Creech’s books called Walk Two Moons.  Walk Two Moons is a Newberry Medal winner and The Wanderer is an Honor book, so you can’t go wrong reading either one.

Walk Two Moons by Sharon CreechWithout giving too much away, I realized the stories are similar because of their characters.  The main The Wanderer by Sharon Creechcharacters are young teenage girls.  Both come from “interesting” households (SPOILER: each child has lost at least one parent in the story) that make the story quirky, heartwarming and bittersweet.   Creech has found a way to discuss death and dying and grief and loss in a way that isn’t creepy but that is kind of introspective and sometimes humorous.  The stories are more about how the girl’s carry on with their lives that are quite unique.  In The Wanderer, the main character, Sophie, sails across the ocean with her uncles and cousins.  In Walk Two Moons, Sal rides across the country with her very odd, but loving, grandparents.

Naturally, in the end, each girl learns and grows from her journeys.  I guess you could say that the journeys they take are not only physical but spiritual, as well.  I really like how an active fantasy life helps the characters cope with their losses.

The main characters are not of any particular ethnicity, although Sal claims to be part Seneca Indian.  But, I like how every character in the stories are quirky and have their own problems (loss of a parent, loss of a job, parent remarrying) which some do well and some not so well.  It is these types of situations that feel like they fit the multicultural litmus test.

I give BOTH books 3 paws!