What book are you reading?
J. D. Salinger and Salley Vickers

Michelle Lee @michelle unpluggedI've been having a difficult time finishing a book the past few months.  I have several with bookmarks in them and I just didn't know which one to read and finish.  I was stuck.  I even had trouble on vacation!  Last year at the beach I finished Anna Karenina and it was truly a wonderful vacation read.  {Nodding}  So yeah, I didn't finish a book over the summer, I don't think so. 

Looking back I did finish Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger but that was in April.  Not really summer reading.  I had picked up the book for fifty cents at the library and read it in no time.  The book depressed me for some strange reason.

Perhaps I felt sorry for Franny for trying to follow a certain path while trying to say the Jesus Prayer that it was causing a breakdown.  While reading the book I tried a few times to repeat part of the prayer over and over and over again and I just couldn't do it.

“Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me.”


The Jesus Prayer involves internalizing the prayer "Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me" to a point where, in a manner similar to a Zen koan, it becomes unconscious, almost like a heartbeat.


Franny was unable to have this prayer part of her like the sound of her heartbeat and it was causing her much angst thankfully she had her older brother Zooey to help. 

Zooey reminded me of myself, or I am wishful thinking because I think Zooey is awesome.  The way he spoke really did remind me of myself.  I can remember taking pictures of the book thinking “Yep, I'd totally say that” and then giggle out loud.

Michelle Lee @michelle unplugged

This book touched me and made me depressed so I was unable to read anymore Salinger.  My husband had gotten on board with me to read his works and we watched a documentary of him.  Salinger was an odd man and I really believe he was a “perv” who liked younger girls.  Perhaps perv isn't the right word because I think he was stuck in his mindset at a young age so he felt he related to younger girls.  Perhaps it was because he had been though so much that the innocence of the young girls made him happy.  I don't know.  I am not a Salinger expert. 

While watching the documentary I just felt the vibe of a man who had been through so much and it was sad.  We have all of this stories now so I can always return to read them if I choose. 

So I finished Franny and Zooey in April and started a huge assortment of books trying to find the perfect one. 

It happened.  I finally started a book and finished a book in about a months time.

The Other Side of You by Salley Vickers

I picked up the book because the cover reminded me of The Girl with the Pearl Earring with Scarlet Johansson. 

The book was amazing.  It had love, depression, anxiety, and lots about life in it.  It was real.  You read this book because you loved the characters and you wanted to know how things turned out for them.  You related to them.  You knew their stories because they were your stories. 

You've loved.  You've lost.  You married for the wrong reasons.  You've grieved.  You've needed help.  Life happens and you do the best you can to make it.

I may have finished this book but I still think about it.  I think of Elizabeth and I think of myself. 

So I picked up another book to read as my bookshelves are running over with books that I've bought to read because I may have liked the cover or I may have liked the short description in the flap.  I try not to read the back or look the books up online because I totally want them to be a surprise to me.  No spoilers. 

I'm currently reading The Dinner by Herman Koch which has been translated from Dutch.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Reading is good.  Reading it sexy.  You can never have too many books. 

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