This author has written Twilight fan fiction with some added smut, and somehow made millions of dollars doing it. So now that she's wealthy, she feels the need to sell wine? Why? Greed?
E.L. James has begun selling wines
inspired by her trilogy online http://www.shelf-awareness.com/ct/uz3642037Biz18468577,
according to the Drinks Business. Red Satin and White Silk are made from
grapes grown in California and feature labels that read "You. Are.
Speaking of smut, here's another TV adaptation of a book that has doubtless been created just for the soft-core porn aspect of it and the ratings that Showtime assumes it will get for airing it. Just like the Sookie Stackhouse series, which went from a fun Southern paranormal mystery book to a TV series that was all about inter-species supernatural sex, I am sure they will quickly gloss over any real scientific discoveries of Masters and Johnson and get right to the porn. Sigh.
Showtime's adaptation of Masters of Sex: The Life and Times of William
Masters and Virginia Johnson, the Couple Who Taught America How to Love
by Thomas Maier (Basic Books, $16.99, 9780465079995) makes its premiere
this coming Sunday, September 29. With the amusing subtitle, "arousing
America's curiosity," the series stars Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan as
Masters and Johnson and will have 12 episodes.
Though I am not a fan of TV shows that adapt books good books into poor excuses for porn, I do NOT believe in censorship or banning books, particularly books that show a unique point of view on society or a specific issue.
Noting that it "takes courage to defend intellectual freedom and the
freedom to read," the sponsors of Banned Books Week have identified
outstanding individuals and groups who have stood up to defend their
freedom to read and are recognizing them each day as "Heroes of Banned
I received a free copy of "Until My Soul Gets It Right" by Karen Wojck Berner last week from a Shelf Awareness drawing.This book is the second volume in Berner's "Bibliophiles" series, which is what attracted me to the title in the first place, as I've been a bibliophile, or book lover, myself, for over 45 years.
The story is the journey of Catherine Elbert, a young Midwestern farm girl, from her early years growing up with her toxic, cruel mother, her cowed and weak father and her brainless, bullying brothers, to her escape to Portland, Maine and later to the sunny climes of California.
After suffering years of abuse and not an ounce of support, Catherine bids her family adieu after high school graduation and heads out to Maine, where she finds a job in a Christmas shop right away, and becomes friends with Patsy, her co-worker and her boss, Katie McLellan. Things are going well until Cat is seduced by a slimy guy named Scott, (which on the face of it makes little sense, but I can only assume he was a sexy looking bad guy and had the kind of charisma that makes girls do stupid things) and starts a clandestine affair with him, only to discover that her friend Patsy is pregnant and engaged to Scott, who explains to a horrified Cat that she was nothing but a little dalliance on the side. someone to have sex with while he was intent on marrying Patsy. Unfortunately, Scott's mother is a horror, a nasty old woman whom everyone calls the Sea Hag, and his father isn't much better. When Patsy confides in Cat that she's become pregnant, Cat advises Patsy to get an abortion, lest she be caught in a miserable marriage to Scott and his interfering, disapproving mother (Mothers take a real beating in this book, and the fathers all seem to be ineffectual dunces. This wouldn't be such a bad thing if they weren't drawn in such an obvious black-hat, white-hat way. They almost become a cliche or a stereotype, instead of a real person.) Once Scott finds out that Cat helped Patsy abort "his" child, all heck breaks loose, and Patsy learns of Cat and Scotts affair and is devastated, as is Ms McLellan, who seems to think that Cat has robbed Patsy of the one thing that would give her life meaning.
I found myself thinking that Cat took a lot of blame that should not have been hers, when Patsy could have said no to the abortion, if she was that intent on carrying slimebag Scotts baby. I think she was much better off not being a part of such a horribly dysfunctional family, with a husband who would cheat on her repeatedly and a mother in law who would bully her constantly. And her boss, the shop owner, turned into instant fair-weather friend, which was sad because she had seemed like a decent person prior to that. Anyway, Cat moves on to a zoo in San Diego, where she meets a nice guy named Will who neglects to tell her that he is from a wealthy, snobbish family. Cat also finds out that her in laws have a tendency to walk all over their son (another mean mother), yet her love for Will wins out in the end, and after failed attempts at acting, Cat realizes that she just needs to apologize to her friends in Portland and get involved with a book group, as well as learn to play golf with her husband and in laws, and life will be okay. After her apologies are accepted, (and after Cat returns home for her father's funeral, only to realize that her mother is still a monster and her brothers are aging idiots) Cat takes her husbands last name on her driver's license, and that's the end. A lot of questions were left unanswered by that ending.
My main problem with this book was that I was expecting a novel about book-lovers and the books that they read and enjoy. I was also expecting a lot about bookstores and libraries and other places bibliophiles call holy, but there was nothing about bibliophiles until the final 1/4 of the book. There was a short story after the readers guide, but it was about characters I'd never heard of before, not having read the first book in this series, so it made little sense to me. Also, I was perturbed that Catherine's abusive, horrible mother is never explained. We never learn why she hated her daughter so much that she would continually abuse, ignore and neglect her. We never learn why nearly all the mothers in this book are twisted beasts, none of them worthy of having and raising a child. Most of the men in the book are either weak, stupid or evil (or a combination of all three), which also doesn't make a lot of sense. Will becomes so wimpy that he doesn't say a thing to Cat when she lashes out at him and snarls about his job with his father's firm.
Though I found this book engrossing, there were a number of things about it that didn't make sense to me, or needed to be elaborated on for the sake of clarity of plot. The characters needed to be more than black and white, and the prose, though clean, could have used more complexity and less redundancy. I'd give it a C+ and recommend this book to those who have survived abusive families and learned to move on with their lives.