a less bookish post

Just a little newsy post for you today, friends, so you’d know what’s going on behind the scenes at pagesofjulia…

The last few weeks have been eventful, with birthdays (my grandfather celebrated his 92nd; also my father and my best friend), anniversaries (3 years at my current job; 5 years married to my handsome Husband!), travel (Husband for work, me to visit my grandparents), and the end of a life:

Rexford Pryor Kastner, “Pop,” April 13, 1921 – April 20, 2013. He was a World War II vet, husband, father of 4, and grandfather of 7. I feel very lucky that I got to spend time with him in his final days.

While it is sad to lose someone we all love, and we’ll miss him, it was about as peaceful an end as a person could hope for; and it helped my personal experience more than I can say, that I got to see him and say goodbye. He was fairly lucid, in good spirits, and made sure to impart some final words.

Another big event is my parents’ permanent departure from Houston: they are now installed (though still settling in) in their new hometown of Bellingham, Washington, near the Canadian border and thus nearly as far as one could get, domestically, from here. This is great for them, and I can’t wait to visit, but of course it’s a loss, locally and in the short term. We’ll be going up there as soon as possible.

And now for more travel and birthdays: Husband and I are off to western Colorado for a long weekend of mountain biking, to celebrate both our birthdays (May 7 and 8). I may put together some vacation-placeholder posts for my absence, as I’ve done before.

And there are books, too!

destinyI am just coming to the end of Destiny of the Republic by Candice Millard, on audio. So far I can recommend it: not a dense or challenging work of nonfiction, but fascinating, and the audio production is fine.


I am about 120 pages into the 450-page Endgame, Volume 1: The Problem of Civilization by Derrick Jensen. This is a large book in more ways than the one, and I will need some time not only to read it, but to process it and figure out how to present it to you. It is not only a book but a worldview.


For Shelf Awareness, I have just finished Sara Gran’s Claire DeWitt and the famethiefBohemian Highway, sequel to Claire DeWitt and the City of the Dead which you will recall I loved – and this latest is quite good too. And I’ve just started The Fame Thief by Timothy Hallinan, who is being compared to Raymond Chandler. Those are about as big as shoes get in the murder mystery game, but it’s also quite good so far.

I have 3 books checked out from my local library right now, which is rather many, so I need to get to work! They are Haven Kimmel’s She Got Up Off the Couch; Daniel Quinn’s Ishmael; and Truman Capote’s Other Voices, Other Rooms. And I do not know what is coming to Colorado with me, sigh.


So, good reading, and a generally eventful life. And now I’m off to play in the dirt and rocks – enjoy your weekend, kids, and I’ll be back in a while!

4 Responses

  1. I’ll be interested to hear your reaction to Other Voices, Other Rooms. I’ve read some later Capote, but not his early work

    He appeared at my college, one of a series of speakers (the others were Jean Shepherd, William F. Buckley, and Hunter Thompson). Capote was very entertaining (of course). He read A Christmas Story.

    • Wow, that would have been a treat – and Hunter S. Thompson, too! Whew.

      I’ve read A Christmas Story and In Cold Blood, and am optimistic about Other Voices based on those. You know you’ll read my opinion here eventually! 🙂

      • They were all interesting, but Thompson was the wildest (of course). Plus cheaper, since he didn’t have a prepared presentation.

        He took questions, and if he didn’t like your question he threw ice at you. He smoked, and drank Wild Turkey. He took bets on football games.

        And halfway through John Belushi came out, terrorized the moderator off the stage, did his Joe Cocker impression, and “moderated” the rest of the evening.

        It was a lot of entertainment for $2.

  2. Wow! No joke!

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