Review: Fifth Business

Don’t look up information before you write a review.  Yet I did find out Tokyo Police Club wrote a song based on this book.

Ramsay, the protagonist of Fifth Business, could be Everyman and Anyperson except that historical and world events move through his life and become up close and personal.

Fifth Business is a story that no matter how much we don’t believe that we impact people’s lives around us, we find out about it at the weirdest moments and when we least expect to. Then at some point everything will come to a head and perhaps not the way we expect. It’s also about belief, love, being yourself, being part of something and being part of other people’s lives.

This book talks a lot about magic and has a magic all of it’s own.

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All the Single Ladies (The Extra Woman)

Before picking up this book, I had never heard the name Marjorie Willis and after reading the book, I understood why.  Ms. Hillis is one of those “hidden” historical people that unless you study a particular area and era inside and out, you will never hear of.

I’ve read plenty about the Roaring 20s and the pre-World War II era.  Plenty.  This era of American history fascinates me and in some ways our society today is a lot like it as much as things have changed.  For example, Prohibition is still here except now it is with items such as marijuana and not alcohol.  The effects are similar and at the same time but farther reaching.  This is for another time.  Another example is Wall Street and society was shaken to it’s core again in 2008.  Yet sometimes the question bed, did we really learn?  How much of what we have is still only on paper?

Marjorie Hillis wrote several books, her best known at that time being Live Alone and Like It. Ms. Hillis wrote for the single woman of the 1920’s and managed to sell products, known today as cross-promotion, for major retailers at the same time.  Ms. Hillis managed to ride out the Great Depression and continued writing for many years, even after she married at an older age for the first time.  The author, Joanna Scutts, paraphrases the book and goes into the historical context surrounding Ms. Hillis and her works.

10/10 for helping your mind to bloom.  A must for feminists, Women’s Studies, Jazz Age enthusiasts, and history buffs.

From Here to Eternity

I read Ms. Doughty’s first book Smoke Gets in Your Eyes while on a bus trip three years ago and after a death in the immediate family.  I finished reading From Here to Eternity the same day another immediate family member had been placed in hospice.

I applaud Ms. Doughty for doing what she does and bringing a very tough topic to the forefront with honesty and humor.  Death is part of the life cycle and so is grieving and not enough is given to the ritual of death and grieving.  Ms. Doughty traveled the world to see how other cultures deal with death and it is very different from what we know in the United States.  And then how the United States is influencing other cultures.

A must read.

Review: The City of Brass

Nahri and Ali take us through this magical journey that feels so real you can picture being part of it while reading it.  This is an adult fairy tale and adds dimension to stories from the Middle East.  Hang onto your seat because it also ends like an adult fairy tale, not as you would expect.

I’m glad I found an extra copy.  A must.

Review: I Am the Cheese

I think I read this once years ago and didn’t get this book like I do reading it now. Reading this book is both creepy and haunting and one has to wonder where reality begins and ends, if it does at all.

Adam is narrating his story with pauses for transcripts of taped sessions.  They talk about clues and Adam being aware he is being drugged.

The story comes out that Adam and his world are not what everything appears to be.

Day 4: Pedal to the Metal

Day 3 I posted an oldie but goodie.  Let me know if you want the link.

For Day 4, another part of what I do is the pedal to the metal, so to speak.  This occurs in many ways, including advocacy for the client’s self and advocacy for client.

People can be their own worst enemies, and this is true for everyone, no matter what walk of life or no matter how popular and outgoing a person is.  If you can’t advocate for yourself, even with a simple “yes”, and/ or advocate for others, it is a necessary skill to have and to build on.

People get aggravated when I ask for a sit down conversation or some kind of face-to-face, even if electronic, meeting.  The more I can talk to you, the better the outcome.  The more I know about you, the more I can help.

Don’t hide yourself away from the world.  The more people know of you and about your skills and talents, the better.  An hour invested in sitting down and talking with someone, even if the business connection doesn’t work out or things take longer than you want, it was worth it.

Never be afraid of putting your pedal to the metal.

 

30 Day Challenge: Day 1 – I need someone….

I’ve been given this 30 day challenge to teach and show what I do.  I can start with my elevator pitch but I have 29 days left to get to that.

When teaching English learners English, I like to use songs and music.  The reason I do this is because music helps the words, the grammar, the syntax all stick easier than simply doing rote memorization.  Teaching with music is also more fun than simply sticking with a book.

The Beatles “Help” is one of my favorite songs to use for advanced beginners to intermediate learners.  One needs the word “help” in English.  The song also teaches simple past, expressing using the verb “need”, the word “so”, “much”, adjectives, pronouns, conditional, and some great vocabulary.

The word “help” also sums up what I do, not only in my business, but all around.

In my business I help people transform their lives.  Yet like other business owners, this isn’t just my business, it is my life.  For the past 23 years, seven of the last have included my LLC, I have worked with, helped, taught, held hands with, cried with, gone through English grammar and literature with ad nauseum, pulled words and information out of people’s mouths, put their thoughts and information on paper, career coached and counseled them, wrote out their dreams and thoughts for them, banged my head against a few computer screens and desks in frustration, and overall seen people move on to better places and positions.