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Sunday Book Review, just for you: My man, Carl Hiassen — “Razor Girl,” “Bad Monkey,” “Skink” and all of ’em

July 9th, 2017

“Chomp,” “Flush,” “Hoot” and “Scat” — boxed set. Yes, I said box set. Carl Hiassen, you write fantastic kids’ books, and your books for grown-ups are righteous, too. You have a rare and amazing talent, thank you for putting it to good use.

“Chomp” on audiobook? One of the best, funniest, “he got the voices ‘just right'” audiobooks I’ve ever listened to. Thank you, James Van Der Beek.

“Skinny Dip” is probably my all-time favorite Hiassen book, although “Bad Monkey” is vying for top contender. “Razor Girl,” too. What do they have in common? Yancy. He’s a disgraced detective turned health inspector, looking for rats in restaurants. He’s not happy. I love the film noir feel of both books. But Joey Perrone, the heroine of “Skinny Dip” is my girl. I adore her.

Just started listening to “Skink: No Surrender” on audiobook. #happyplace #ilovesummer #readmorebooksdammit #orlistentothem

All for now, happy Sunday, happy reading,


What’s New on My Nightstand, Saturday Edition: “Delicious! A Novel,” by Ruth Reichl; “Falling: A Daughter, A Father, and A Journey Back,” by Elisha Cooper; “The Very Fluffy Kitten: Papillon Goes to the Vet,” by A.N. Kang

July 8th, 2017

“Delicious! A Novel,” by Ruth Reichl. I’m a fan of Reichl’s writing, and of her work at Gourmet magazine, so this book, to me, is like a big appetizer platter, with a yummy main course, salads and desserts following. Really fun to read fiction from this gifted non-fiction and memoir writer.

“Falling: A Daughter, A Father, and A Journey Back,” by Elisha Cooper (Anchor Books, $15.95, 146 pages). Extraordinary memoir about a young daughter, her father (an artist who makes children’s books), and their family’s struggle with childhood cancer. Beautiful, amazing, astounding, and the integrity of his writing, of who he is, as a man, husband, father — really superb. Cooper speaks his truth. This is seriously a great book and one that I will re-read. Deep and poignant, funny and sometimes harsh. *Love.*

I stuck scraps of paper throughout the book, marking all of my favorite quotes and passages, but this one… ah-ha.

“A royalty check for my book ‘Farm’ comes in the mail. It’s small, but big for me. I once heard of a writer who complained to a friend that his book had sold only two thousand copies, and the friend replied that if the two thousand people who had read the writer’s book walked through his kitchen, all of them shaking his hand, he would break down in tears at how fortunate he was to have touched so many.”

I hope that many, many people read this book and are as moved by it as I was.

“Papillon Goes to the Vet,” by A.N. Kang (Disney-Hyperion Books, 2017, $16.99, ages 3-5, 40 pages). The second in the “Papillon” series is pretty dang cute. (Goes on sale Sept. 5, 2017.) Papillon likes to have fun, and he can even float! (Who knew a cat could do this?) But when he swallows something he shouldn’t, he’s off to the vet. Beautiful illustrations that are reminiscent of Melanie Watts’ “Chester” books.

Bon appetit!