10 Books on the #Alreadyread List: #23

1. Me Talk Pretty One Day. I love this book and many other books by David Sedaris. It is so funny and honest.

2. China Dolls. Definitely a captivating story.

3. Where’d You Go Bernadette. This book was interesting from beginning to end. Nothing boring or expected happens.

4. The Fountains of Silence

5. Gods and Generals. If you are interested in novels about the Civil War, then you should read “Gods and Generals.”

6. Othello. I did my last paper in college on Othello.

7. Strong Heart

8. Frankenstein. Mary Shelley was a genius. I wish she had had a happier life.

9. Projection

10. All the Murmuring Bones

Poetry Maybe. #6

black wool coat and a motorcycle in

the rearview mirror

he kneels on the side of the road.

calling whoever will answer

The thought enters

we could provide some help or comic relief

but our actions are stalled

he doesn’t need help

from us

does he?

our options are to show concern

or drive off to be anonymous in the holiday traffic

the scene is fragrant with musk and diesel

we give him a smile that lasts too long

and then we pose together like in a magazine

like it’s kismet and all meant to be eternally

who can have criticism for shallow romance?

surrounded with chemistry and hearts on our notebook

Me and Motorcycle Guy 4ever

(bedroom scene inserted here)

sticky flowers and heart-shaped hot tub

Horns from the traffic behind us establishes that we

require a reduction of trashy romance novels

daydreaming can be dangerous

while driving

Meet and Greet: Love Again

Love Again

Who: Love Again of San Antonio, Texas

What: Alternative Emo

Why: There are thousands of bands that wish they were Love Again, they just don’t know it yet. I am in love with Love Again. 😉 I could listen to them 24/7.

Where:

www.facebook.com/LoveAgainMusic

www.instagram.com/loveagainmusic

www.twitter.com/loveagainmusic

The Ardent Swarm: #bookreview

“The equation was so simple that its simplicity rendered it unreal and almost unfathomable. No more bees: no more pollination. No more pollination: no more harvests. No more harvests: hello, famine.”
― Yamen Manai, The Ardent Swarm

The Ardent Swarm by Yamen Manai and translated by Lara Vergnaud is set in Nawa, a village in Tunisia. There is political unrest at the time, which I think is at the time of the Arab Spring, approximately 2010.

Sidi is a reclusive beekeeper. He doesn’t pay too much attention to anything besides trying to find out who or what is killing his hives. Through his research, he finds out that the responsible party are killer hornets.

Bees are really fascinating creatures. Sidi, Sidi’s niece, Jannet, and her husband, Tamar, also discover that Japanese bees have a way to protect themselves against hornets.

In the book, it is called an ardent swarm. One of the meanings of ardent is “burning.” It is a real action in which the bees form a ball around the hornet. The bees vibrate their wings until the ball’s temperature rises. The temperature can reach 118 degrees. So the unsuspecting hornet is burned to death and the bees clean up the crime scene. No one will ever know that a hornet was there.

Sidi is desperate to begin a new colony that can defeat the hornet. He needs a Japanese queen bee. Jannet and Tamar visit Japan and find several queen bees. Will the queens survive the trip to Tunisia? Will introducing a Japanese queen help to defeat the killer hornets?

Queen bees and their colonies will love this book. Also, beekeepers will find it interesting. Honestly, you can be allergic to bees and still enjoy The Ardent Spring.

If you are a killer hornet, then you might not be interested in a book about bees.

Sleep Deprived Music Review: Kaylee Elizabeth

Seattle-based singer/songwriter, Kaylee Elizabeth, will be releasing her debut album, Playing with Fire, on June 11. Write it down on your calendar! Set an alert so you remember to support the release of this new album!

The lyrics seem very heartfelt and honest. Kaylee spent time in Ireland studying traditional singing. I think you can hear the influences of her time in Ireland in her singing and songwriting.

Her music reminds me a little bit of Joni Mitchell and Carole King. Maybe someday she will find someone to be the Carole King to her Joni Mitchell. She might not need a partner but collaboration can be good for the creative process. On this album, she had the help of several musicians including Jessica Dobson (Deep Sea Diver, Beck, The Shins), Sean Lane (Pedro the Lion, Perfume Genius), Michael Porter and Zander Hawley.

“The saying ‘playing with fire’ encapsulates the tension that this album holds for me,” she explains. “It also explores the fleeting and temporal nature of things and how realizing that delicacy gives perspective. This album shares my doubts, prayers, and gratitude of the last handful of years.”

Well, this is a good album to play while you dance around the computer room with your needy cat. Dancing with cats isn’t scientifically proven to be bad for the creative process. We made it through most of “Passing Through” before he was ready for his next adventure. I enjoyed “Playing with Fire” without the company of the needy cat.

You won’t need a dancing pet to enjoy this album. Hopefully, you will also be a new fan of Kaylee Elizabeth.

Connect with Kaylee Elizabeth:

Website | Facebook | Instagram 

Flawless Friday Video: Lion Babe

I have watched this video on repeat. I’m not even a little bit sorry. When you have a chance, check out the “Frida Kahlo” video from Lion Babe of New York City. They also have some amazing band merch. I’m a Leo and would like all of my clothing to say Lion Babe from now on.

Connect with Lion Babe:

https://lionbabe.ffm.to/fridakahlo

Twitter

Facebook

Meet and Greet: Sweet Teeth

Who: Sweet Teeth

Andreas Axelson – Guitars, Vocals

Joona Hassinen – Bass

Andreas Sjöberg – Guitars

Joakim Öhlund – Drums

What: Alternative Rock/Power Pop/Punk

Why: They have signed with Lovely Records and will be releasing an EP in July. Sweet Teeth worked so hard to get a record deal so give their record a spin. Lucky for us, the EP will also be available on vinyl.

Also, their reason for you to listen: 7 tracks of bittersweet and straight-forward alternative rock, performed with a ton of energy and heartwarming honesty.

Where:

Sweet Teeth Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/sweetteethpowerpop

Sweet Teeth Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/sweetteethpowerpop/

The Secret Stealers: #bookreview

Did you know that Julia Child was a researcher for the Office of Strategic Services? She wasn’t a spy but she helped spies do the spying. Julia Child came up with a shark repellent, which is still used at this very moment. She met her husband through working at the OSS. Spying brought two people together in marriage.

Do you have what it takes to be a spy? If my cover is being a clumsy, awkward, stressed-out person then I could definitely be a spy.

The Secret Stealers begins in Washington D.C. during World War II. Anna Cavanaugh is a gifted French teacher but she wants to do more with her life. She has recently been widowed and questioning how she can get out of the slump that she is in. Her parents really want her to move back home but Anna is not a fan of that plan. Eventually, Anna wants to return to France but at the moment the country is occupied by Nazis.

Anna has known William Donovan, who was the head of the Office of Strategic Services. He was an actual person who had an amazing career. He hired Anna to work as his personal assistant. She worked her way up to spy training and then an actual spy. Her goal of going to France might actually happen. Of course, it’s going to be dangerous. She cannot go to a country occupied by Nazis as herself. The OSS creates a backstory for her and train her before sending her to France.

Anna arrives in France but it has changed with the Nazis hanging out all over the place. She’s willing to risk her life to end the Nazi occupation. Her parents are not excited about this new career as a spy. However, they do eventually come around and are very proud of her. I think her mom still wants her to relax at the beach and read trashy romance novels. It’s a great idea but it’s not the right choice for Anna.

Julia Child is friends with Anna. I didn’t make the connection that it was the Julia until the end. Maybe I shouldn’t tell you but Julia Child might be one of my favorite people of all time. I couldn’t keep it a secret. So maybe I wouldn’t be a good spy after all. hmmmm . . . . Good to know.

If you love stories about women taking charge of their own life and taking the road less traveled, then you will enjoy The Secret Stealers.

If you don’t like Julia Child or if you love Nazis, then you are all mixed up. You should love Julia Child and hate Nazis. Work on it and come back to this book later.

Poetry Maybe. #5

Stage Left

Rodney transported instruments

for not enough money.

He scraped together enough

crumpled bills for juice

and tape to keep his boots together.

Bibi Chick place was stage left, never center.

People rarely check beyond the spotlight.

Sisters and brothers know the difference between left, right, center.

Bibi disklikes the shabbiness of neglect.

Rodney notices the bitterness and salt

that is unwritten in her voice but nestles in her eyes

He keeps his cleverness with the tape.

At her last show, Bibi was overwrought with venom

She didn’t see her frequent observer.

Rodney invites her without an invitation.

Lures her to a secret sermon

human to animal in seconds

animal to captive audience

War is not love she sings

revive my soul

on the stage of forestry

and backdrop of midnight stars

with that spell

the hunter becomes the captive

Now she is center stage

for him to hear

until the end

chasing destino

#freemomhugs

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