Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Time to Finish High School...

I think it may be time for me to finish my High School reading for English class. Maybe then I'll stop having those stupid dreams where I have to take a test for a class, and I haven't been going and can't really fake it because it's physics, and I've never had physics or anything. I sort of decided that it was time for me to start reading some American Classics a few years ago. Ted's eldest niece is in college, and she was reading The Grapes of Wrath. I realized that I had never read that, and it seemed kind of dumb for me to have missed out on that one. You may ask, HOW does a person get through a Master's Degree in Comparative Literature, and never have read these books? It's just that Comp Lit is focused on books from other countries, not so much the American authors. So, while I've read Things Fall Apart, The Tale of Genji, and Phedre, I've missed a lot of the American classics. Boy, I'm GLAD I made that decision, because The Grapes of Wrath was an awesome, amazing book. (Movie wasn't too shabby, either...it was especially poignant to me that both were put out DURING the depression, so there wasn't hind sight...it was all current for the audiences of the book and the film). I had read The Red Pony in Jr. High, which scarred me for life, and I didn't think I ever wanted to read another Steinbeck book, ever, because, you know, THE PONY and all. So, after my great experience with The Grapes of Wrath, I read The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, which was pretty frickin amazing, and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. But I got a bit wiped out on the classics, and so I got sidelined by a couple of more current books, not really 'classics', but great all the same. Except, well, I've been trying to read Cloud Atlas for awhile now, and have gotten through the first section, and am not loving it. I really want to love it, because it's such a breakthrough novel and blah blah blah, but other things keep coming along.

So the other night, I finished reading The Time Travelers Wife, which was VERY good, so good that I bought a copy for my friend's birthday gift. Hope she LOVES it. Since I was finished, I thought I would get back to Cloud Atlas. But then, last night, we watched Capote. Have you seen this film? It was amazing. Just amazing. I've never been that interested in Truman Capote, but the story of how he got so sucked in to the lives and stories of these murderers, while writing his last complete book, In Cold Blood, was SO interesting. Definitely Oscar material. One of Truman's good friends was Harper Lee, the author of To Kill a Mockingbird. Also, never read that one. I think it's a big one in High School, but not one of the books my teachers chose for us. I happen to own a copy, so I started that last night, and then next I think I'll try In Cold Blood, and then if I'm still in classic mode, it will be The Scarlet Letter or East of Eden, and if I need a break, it will be Cloud Atlas for another try. Wow...I have a lot of reading to do, don't I? Better get cracking. (And since I get maybe two or three pages in a day, at bedtime, it's a pretty slow process...)

My point, if there even is one to this rambling post, is that you might want to check out "Capote", and then, see if it spurs you to pick up any of the American Classics that you missed along the way.

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