A Moment of Jen
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Thursday, August 06, 2009
posted by Jen at 8/06/2009 05:58:00 PM

For the last two weeks I've been trying to form an opinion about "More to Love" -- it seems like the kind of thing I should have an opinion about, right? -- but I cannot find my place on the impressed-horrified continuum. Yes, the ladies seem kind of needy and pathetic...but aren't all of the contestants on every reality dating show needy and pathetic? Yes, they're drunk, but why should big girls in bathing suits be any different from the skinny girls in theirs?

Clearly, I need to keep thinking about it.

Meanwhile, here is Maureen Corrigan on BEST FRIENDS FOREVER, on NPR. Is my mother kvelling? Why, yes, she is! (My personal favorite part of the review -- writing a book deemed good enough to sit on a shelf with Susan Isaac's SHINING THROUGH, which is one of my favorite books of all time. If you haven't read it, do yourself a favor and take it to the beach).

Finally, today I was talking with a reporter from the Cape Cod Times, and the topic turned, as it often does, to Richard Russo, who I will not accuse of style-biting, even though I really think only one writer per summer should be allowed a girlie beach scene on the cover, and Cape Cod-set epiphanies inside.

I was confessing that I've never actually read a Richard Russo book...but I have a good reason.

The summer GOOD IN BED came out was also the summer that EMPIRE FALLS was published. That summer, I spent many kid-free weeks traipsing from one book store to another, where I would often read for crowds whose numbers could be counted on one hand, with fingers left over, and I'd sign copies of the book, in hopes that the store could foist them off on unsuspecting readers.

My mother would accompany me to some of these visits and, being a friendly sort, would frequently strike up conversations with patrons, who would sometimes ask what she was reading.

"Oh, I just read the best book," my mother would say. "It was funny, and sad, and true to life...it had everything!"

Here it comes, I'd think, readying myself for the maternal endorsement. Then my mother would pick up a paperback and press it into her new friend's hands.

"EMPIRE FALLS!" she'd say. "It's soooo good!"

After the fifth or sixth time this happened, I pulled Fran aside and explained that I doubted that Mrs. Russo was endorsing my book, so she needed to quit pimping Richard Russo's work. Which I still haven't read, but probably should.

So now it's back to work...but if you want more of me, I find that I'm posting on Twitter (@jenniferweiner) and on Facebook a lot more than the old blog these days. Come find me there...I give books away to people stuck on their library waiting lists!
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