Teaser Tuesday: Empire of Sin

Mother Nature knew I needed to catch up on my TBR.

Just as Hurricane Joaquin has turned out into the Atlantic – creating “a hurricane without the hurricane” as Krystal call it – so the turning Wheel of Time has brought

Teaser TuesdayJust in case you don’t know, Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can play along! All you have to do is grab the book you’re currently reading, open to a random page and share a few sentences from that page. But make sure you don’t share any spoilers!*

*I wish I could take credit for this introduction, but I shamelessly stole it from Heather over at bitsnbooks. To help me make amends, you should go check out her blog.

Somehow I continue to keep ahead of my Goodreads challenge – 5 books ahead of schedule! – which is just as well since NaNoWriMo lurks just around the corner.

Last night I started reading Empire of Sin: A Story of Sex, Jazz, Murder, and the Battle for Modern New Orleans by Gary Krist. I found the book while wandering the stacks and became intrigued by both the title and the font. Perusing the chapter titles and reading the introduction, I know “the Axeman” will make an appearance or two (maybe more?) – you might be familiar with his character from American Horror Story: Coven; speaking of which, AHS: Freak Show comes to Netflix today – should school be cancelled, I know what I’ll be doing!

But, since you came for a Teaser, the Truly Random Number Generator sends us to page 133:

Joseph La Menthe . . . was a Creole pianist who 
affected a casual disdain for the music of what he 
called "Uptown Negroes."  A musician of stunning 
individuality himself, he was busily developing his 
own unique blend of piano-based ragtime, dance 
music, and blues - a "Spanish-tinged" style that 
would eventually have its own claim as the prototype 
for the kind of music still a decade away from being 
known as "jazz."  

Empire of Sin cover

In Retrospect

You might recall Banned Books Week 2015 focused on YA Literature; you might also remember I read The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison as part of that observance. Perhaps the books was shocking once; in my opinion, no more. It has some value in portraying life in a bygone era, but little in the way of actual literary value. 2 stars.

I also read Smoke Gets in Your Eyes and Other Lessons from the Crematory by Caitlin Doughty. It found it at times to be enjoyable, philosophical, entertaining, and preachy. It made me ponder what I want for my earthly remains. Losing steam halfway through, this memoir fell to 3 stars.

Favorite Line:

Ignorance is not bliss, only a deeper kind of terror.

For the first time since college I listened to an audiobook – at least, something listed as an audiobook on Goodreads. I won a copy of The Best of Pop Culture Happy Hour from NPR. It contains ten of the best or most popular episodes of the show chosen from the over 200 episodes in the show’s history. I have never listened to the actual podcast before; that may change after listening to this audiobook. While I generally care little for pop culture “news”, I would highly recommend the podcast based on these ten episodes. 5 stars.

Finally, As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride by Cary Elwes proved a fun, lighthearted anecdotal recounting of how The Princess Bride was made. Although Elwes (Westley/The Man in Black/The Dread Pirate Roberts) is listed as author, there are many sidebar recollections from surviving members of the cast. Some of the tales have already been passed around the internet, while others may be new – at least, they were new to me. Highly recommend to any fan of the movie! 5 stars.



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