A person who won’t read has no advantage over one who can’t read.
My book club met this week and we discussed Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Over the past few months several of my friends have recommended this book and I was looking forward to reading it. Overall I thought it was a good book and was well written. My only complaint is that it manipulates the reader a little too much. It takes you down one path, then turns around and steers you in a different direction. There’s really no opportunity for the reader to try to figure out what happened. Anyway, I enjoyed it and was happy that it was my turn to host and lead the discussion because my research led me to an interview with the author where she justified the book ending. In reading other reviews, it seems that hardly anyone likes the ending. I felt physically sick when I got to the end, but after reading the interview I realized it was the only logical conclusion.
For snacks I made a couple of pretzel dips. One was Snickers Dip and it was so-o-o-o good. I have to spoon it into a very tiny dish and quickly put the lid back on so I don’t eat the whole bowl. It’s a really easy dip and is good with pretzels (sweet and salty), graham crackers and apples.
There are dozens of recipes for this dip on the internet and Pinterest that are basically the same but here’s how I made mine. Most recipes use more brown sugar and omit the caramel sauce but I think it adds a little more caramel flavor and makes it easier to dip.
1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/2 (8 oz.). container Cool Whip
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons caramel ice cream topping
8 Fun Size Snickers bars, chopped finely
Beat the cream cheese then stir in the remaining ingredients. Chill in the refrigerator overnight to allow the flavors Snickers bars to melt and the flavors to blend.
This is just a literary week around here because it’s also the Fox Cities Book Festival. The festival hosts over 60 events over the course of about 8 days. Many local and national authors speak on subjects like writing techniques, inspiration, and how to get published. Many also give readings from their own works.
Last night my husband and I went to hear Lisa Genova speak. She is the author of one of my very favorite books, Still Alice.
Lisa is an excellent speaker and it was wonderful to hear her tell about transitioning from being a Harvard trained neuro scientist to writing novels in Starbucks. It was informative to hear how she uses her scientific background to open doors and authenticate the subjects she writes about, Alzheimer’s disease, left neglect syndrome and autism.
Today I listened to Holly Harden speak about writing for Garrison Keillor and the Prairie Home Companion show. She is an amazing storyteller and you could just picture Lake Wobegon as she was talking. Holly writes the column A View from Mrs. Sundberg’s Window for the Prairie Home Companion. It is just so interesting to see how authors can turn simple observations into an interesting story.
Over the next couple of days I look forward to attending a few more sessions, including a talk by Lisa Scottoline. If you have a book festival in your town I highly recommend attending some of the events.