Tuesday, November 27, 2007

I Need Your Help!

In five days this will be me.

Except my skin is much paler with a lot more freckles. And my assets are much more ample. And the thought of my ample assets spilling out of a bright orange bathing suit top is downright frightening. And I don't have a cute sun hat. And do those look like man hands to you? And if it were really me, there'd be a great big margarita sitting there in the sand. And a cabana boy wearing very tight swim trunks and carrying a bottle of massage oil and a ripe papaya.

Squirrel and I are heading to the Yucatan on Sunday. He's going to be climbing pyramids, learning about Mayan history, trekking in the jungle and snorkeling in the cenotes. I'm going to be eating, drinking, making friends, drunkenly dancing and looking for cheap souvenirs to bring back for Christmas presents. And eating. And drinking.

It may sound like we have very different interests while on this little vacation, but don't worry. It's our honeymoon after all, so the fact that every morning, afternoon and evening is going to be Saturday Night will be the common thread that will hold the whole thing together.

And this is where you come in because while I'm basking in the sun and drinking margaritas, I'll need something delicious to read. I've scoured the shelves of bookstores today and have come up empty. I've looked at my own collection, and while there are plenty of books I probably should have read by now, none of them seem quite right. So I'm now pleading for your advice. Won't you help a girl out? Please? If you don't, I'm afraid Squirrel's going to sneak "50 Simple Things You Can Do to Fight the Right" in my bag. And if you think I'm reading that on the beach, you're crazier than he is.

What would you read?


Ann J-S said...

Okay so here is my list. If you go out and read some of these then you MUST write me your thoughts because these are my absolute favorites.

I have generally three literary genres that I keep going back to. Their self-imposed unsophisticated categories are as follows: a) chick flick/bublegum - because sometimes I just want to laugh and be entertained; b) bleary-eyed depressives - usually literary greats that can change the way you think about life but depress the fu-- out of you; and c) historical fiction - okay I didn't make that one up but give me credit for the first two.

Considering the festive mood of the Saturday night FEST you are planning I am being a bit heavy in the A category.

A) Nature Girl by Carl Hiaasen. (If you don't laugh out loud at this hilarious book than you need to have some blood work done because something is NOT right.) Quick read.
Last Chance Saloon and/or Sushi For Beginners by Marian Keyes. Great mix of comedy, hopeless twits and drama. Quick reads.
Milagro Beanfield War by John Nichols. Okay this almost falls on the literary semi-serious side at times but if you have not read this book yet, it's crazy funny.

B) The Piosonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver. Wow this book was incredible and you will cry. I actually just read this over the summer. A less serious and on the chick flick cusp novel of hers is Prodigal Summer. This is also a great read.
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. True confession — it's on my Christmas list and so technically I haven't read it yet but all my friends that I swap books with swear by this. I know it's great. I'm just waiting.. patiently.
East of Eden by John Steinbeck. Hands down, all time favorite book on the planet. Nuff said. However it is very long and may be a little heavy reading for your getaway romp.

C) My list is already too long. If you are into historical fiction (particularly of the early European royalty genre email me and I can send you a list.)

Have a great time.

Tapperass said...

I apologize for not being of any help here. Most of the books I read are non-fiction, and about subjects that would bore you. I read a great biography of Sandy Koufax once. I recently read a book about the 1986 New York Mets call The Bad Guys Won. I have also red a book about water rights and reclamation call Cadillac Desert>

I am sorry I read stuff that might not interest your fancy dear. I am square.


Anonymous said...

Anything by Ann Lamont, The Secret Life of Bees, The Mermaid Chair, 5 Quarters of the Orange (one of my all time favorites), The Memory Keepers Daughter (a wonderful book, one of the main characters has Down syndrome).

Have fun!

Anonymous said...

ANYTHING by B. Kingsolver. The Poisonwood Bible is my all time favorite, but Prodigal Summer is delicious as is Animal Dreams. Loyd (one L) is my fantasy lover but I won't be jealous if he becomes yours as well.

Thanks for the recommendation on Nature Girl, Ann J-S. I love Hiassen too. Milagro Beanfield War is wonderful and one of those books you wish you could read again for the first time.

Have a great time, Kristabel.

Jane Doe

Dijea said...

I love to read! I could give you a list for ever.

Chick lit: A Total Waste of Make-up by Kim Gruenenfelder. or Does She or Doesn't She by Alisa Kwitney. Both are great.

Mystery/Thriller: If you haven't read the Jack Reacher series by Lee Child start at the begining the first one is Killing Floor. Or a total page turner Jeffrey Deaver's Praying for Sleep or A Maiden's Grave. Both are books you CANNOT put down.

Anonymous said...

ahhhh, c'mon!!!

if you haven't read "the corrections" by franzen this is a good time. you'll think better of yourself for doing so.

off the wall classic read (impress the cabana boy): "pnin" by nabokov. one word review: "hilarious"

in the 'i can read it all by myself' category: "go dog go" by eastman. over and over and over.

if i catch you reading elizabeth gilbert, i swear i will never read your blog again. naughty naughty girl.


Anonymous said...

Another crazy / funny book was Running With Scissors.

Jane Doe

Anonymous said...

<< looking up Elizabeth Gilbert.

Naughty Girl

Anonymous said...

One book and one book only.....Growing Up Brady by Barry Williams.

If you can't find it. How about From "ABBA to Mamma Mia...The Official Book" by Carl Magnus Palm.

That should hold you between Saturday Nights.

Anonymous said...

Best ever the Stephanie Plum Series by Janet Evanovich. It has it all. Total easy read that you can put down and come back to.

Kristabel said...

Hey, Jon, somebody just gave me "The Corrections."

By the way, are you one of those strange PRED folk Squirrel's always talking about?

Kristabel said...

Wow...thanks for all the suggestions! Some I've already read, but some are new which is great. I love seeing what you all like to read.

Prodigal Summer and Nature Girl are two that are on the shelf but haven't been touched...so taking one of those would mean more money for tequila...

And Eko - how did I not know that Greg wrote a book?! Your suggestions really prove how much you pay attention. That's one lucky ladyfriend. I can tell you the exact moment I fell in love with Squirrel - when he walked out of Powell's books in Portland with a copy of "From ABBA to Mama Mia" under his arm and handed it to me. Sigh.

Jeff said...

Anything by Christopher Moore makes great beach reading. I had "Fluke" along with lots of rum drinks on my last beach vacation. If you're feelin' irreverent, "Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal" is also fun.

Jennifer Savage said...

Kristabel, what are some books that you already like? Glancing at my bookshelf, recent reads I've enjoyed include Ann Patchett's The Magician's Assistant and her Bel Canto, sweet-sad people stories; J.R. Moehringer's memoir about liquor, literature and growing up fatherless, The Tender Bar, Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis, which is a graphic novel about growing up in revolutionary Iran (sounds weird, but it totally works); No Touch Monkey by Ayun Halliday, which is a collection of exotic travels-gone-awry stories told with down-to-earth Hoosier humor combined with a dry New York wit.

I also agree with The Poisonwood Bible recommendation... anything by Richard Russo... Ooooh! Have you read I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith? It's gloriously romantic, yet not sappy; sweet and original. If you like Jane Austen, you'd love this. Also on the charmingly romantic tip, Chocolat by Joanne Harris. Her newer book, Gentlemen and Players, is an intriguing character-driven mystery that I quite enjoyed.

Jennifer Savage said...

Also – I love The Corrections but it took me two reads for that to happen.

Neil Gaiman is an amazing writer; so is Michael Chabon. The book Good Omens, by Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, is hilarious and a favorite:

"The world is going to end next Saturday, just before dinner, but it turns out there are a few problems--the Antichrist has been misplaced, the Four Horseman of the Apocalypse ride motorcycles, and the representatives from heaven and hell decide that they like the human race."

Anonymous said...

Is there a book blog?

Anonymous said...

My Horizontal Life by Chelsea
Handler. You will laugh out loud!

Anonymous said...

I read a lot of everything, but you need some exciting fiction for a job like this. Sometimes you need escapism, but trash won't do. For me, the better quality speculative fiction is what works best.

Tops on my recent list: Farthing by Jo Walton

I'd heartily recommend anything by Gene Wolfe, Octavia Butler, Carl Hiassen, Niel Stephenson...

Anonymous said...

The "I Chong" by Tommy Chong - great vacation read about his getting arrested then doing time for making art bongs selling them across state lines.

Have a wonderful honeymoon!

Anonymous said...

Hey, you're on your honeymoon. You should be able to entertain yourself!

What about us poor bloggers left out in the cold with no "Chocolate Covered Zanex"?

Kristabel said...

Sweet Anonymous...

I'm leaving Keri with a challenge, so you'll be just fine. If she's up for it, that is.


Anonymous said...

"50 Ways To fight the right"

Sound effect:
(rubber glove snapping)

samoasoftball said...

A prayer for Owen Meany by John Irvine. Any Tom Robbins book.

Hey Ann j-s, just finished Nature Girl. That was a fun book. The Kite Runner is an excellent read. I read the Poisenwood Bible. It was sad to me. Kind of gave me a feeling of hopelessness.

Lee Child, Evanovich and Susan Grafton for quick easy read Romps.