Wednesday, March 23, 2011

What I'm Reading

I recently joined a book club, and I must say that I look forward to our monthly meetings to listen to and participate in the insightful discussions that we have regarding the book of choice. This month, the selected book was Multiple Blessings by Kate Gosselin and others. Initially, I wasn't sure how I felt about this book because I'd always had this perception of Kate as being an emasculating, over-bearing, psychotic, neat-freak with adorable children. My heart strings would be plucked for Jon's sake because he seemingly complied with her perpetual list of rants and demands with the most nonchalant attitude. He was overly passive-aggressive, and I can honestly see why they ended in divorce.

With that being the case, the book solidified my assumptions that were gathered from watching the Gosselin's reality show, and Kate's likability factor is no better on my scale than before. Oh, and the use of analogies, and all of the imagery producing English terms available were in overdrive in this book often making me want to hurl it against my bathroom vanity. I can't wait to see what the other ladies have to say about this delightfully-written smorgasbord of pretty daisy dancing emotions filled with gleefully flying butterflies under the simmering sunset of this miraculously humid day while the crispy yellow bumble bees are intermixing with the dust-like pollen that is covering my cement-laden driveway... Well, you get the picture.

The verdict is still out on Getting to Happy since I've only cracked the first chapter or so of this book, but from the few pages that I've read, it's filled with Terry McMillan's "in-your-face-I-don't-give-a-damn-what-you-think" language. It's the sequel to Waiting to Exhale and a true testament that books brought to the big screen are often done so cinematically and don't have many of the original elements of the book. I keep thinking about the part where Savannah, who was Whitney Houston's character, thought she wasn't beautiful. Um, how can you cast Houston in a part where a woman isn't beautiful? Maybe they should have opted for Kimberly Elise or Viola Davis. They are relatively attractive but not necessarily the most beautiful women although their talent is radiant. Hopefully, this book will not disappoint. Maybe I should recommend it for the next book club meeting because I'm sure there are going to be some worthy moral discussions contained within.

For those of you who are on Twitter, you can follow Terry and all of feisty splendor at @MsTerryMcMillan

I was having a conversation with a friend who suggested that this book would be a good read, and it wasn't really surprising to me that I hadn't read The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter G. Woodson. My friend also mentioned that it would be an "easy" read which would have been a bit insulting coming from someone else, but he knows that his subtle jabs go in one ear and out the other!

I think that in our busy and often chaotic lives, we forget that reading is not only for entertainment, but it is also for personal enrichment. Thus far, I've read the forward to this book, and I find myself thinking that I am the stereotype that is being perpetuated when it comes to being "taught" about my heritage and where I come from at institutions of learning. We learn about MLK, the Black abolitionists, the Black poets and musicians, and that's pretty much it. Unfortunate as it is, if African-Americans don't take the initiative to learn about where we come from, history is not going to be delivered to us during our educational years. Knowledge is truly a sense of self-empowerment.

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