Skip to main content

My Back Pages - January 2017


It's a new month and a new year and having aimed at reading at least 50 books this year January saw me wade through seven books. Just shows you what you can accomplish when you're not spending all your time reading Trump-related posts on Facebook. And I find my blood pressure's dropped, too.

Spies, detectives, musicians, actors and entertainers held my interest last month. I'd started an old Le Carre novel, A Perfect Spy, before I left Panama at the beginning of the month and wrapped it up when I got home.

Then it was into Powerhouse by James Miller - all about the agency business in Hollywood. It was kind if interesting with lots of behind the scenes stuff about the key agency movers and shakers. and how agencies grew from representing actors to getting involved in myriad other activities like banking and sports.

For What It's Worth was a bit of a guilty pleasure all about The Buffalo Springfield, the 60s group with Stephen Stills, Neil Young and Richie Furay who all went on to bigger and better things.

Mr. Tambourine Man about the Byrds' Gene Clark was interesting but I don't think I really needed to know about how many drugs the guy did. Really - page after page. Unfortunately, while talented he was also tragic figure.

Of course, the trouble I have with music books, and the above two were no different, is then I cruise Amazon.ca for CDs by the artist. Some months can be a little expensive.

The Smothers Brothers Book was hilarious. I always liked them and their mid-60s TV show and it was interesting to see what motivated them to do the comedy they did and to host the musical groups they did.

I closed out the month with the first two Nero Wolf novels by Rex Stout. I remember finding a paperback or two around the house when I was a kid and thought I'd revisit this detective's adventures. Stout wrote just over 30 of these beginning in the mid-1930s. They were both a satisfying read.

A Perfect Spy - John Le Carre ****
Powerhouse: Creative Artists Agency - James Andrew Miller ****
For What It's Worth: The Story of The Buffalo Springfield - John Einarsson ****
Dangerously Funny: The Uncensored Story
of the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour - David Bianculli ****
Mr. Tambourine Man: The Life and Legacy of the Byrds' Gene Clark - John Einarsson ****
Fer-de-Lance (Nero Wolf #1) Rex Stout ****
The League of Frightened Men (Nero Wolf #2) Rex Stout ****

What are you reading? Let me know. I'm always interested in exploring something new. You don't want me going back to Trump tweets do you?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

My Back Pages - November

I know, I know, I know I should have reported in before now. But sometimes real life just gets in the way. I attempted 5 books in November. I say attempted because I slapped a big DNF (did not finish) on Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon. I just can't seem to get into this guy. It's the second or third of his I've given up on,

Not so the other four, starting with a biography of Stephen Stills called Change Partners. This followed by a hilarious biography of the guy responsible for National Lampoon called A Stupid and Futile Gesture - How Doug Kenney and National Lampoon Changed Comedy Forever.

I ended the month reading yet another biography, this one of the man behind Rolling Stone magazine,. It was called Sticky Fingers: The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine. A fascinating read.

So last month I hit the magic number 50 I'd imagined for myself back in January. If I roll this month into my yearly total I'm at 54 books. And I still have Decem…

Paroxysm Paradox

The weather was unseasonably warm for October. The sun set around 6:30 but the daylight hours were quite enjoyable. So thought Richard, as he set out for his daily walk in the woods. He marvelled at the turning leaves which exhibited an explosion of colour more significant with each passing day.

But Richard knew the turning leaves would soon start to fall. And the trees would soon be bare with no leaves at all. And then the snow would fly and fall from the trees as the leaves had before it.

Richard couldn't help but think of the sudden change to come as a seizure of sorts. And he wasn't looking forward to it. After all, who would welcome a seizure, he thought, as he rolled uncontrollably among the leaves.

This week paroxysm/seizure was the prompt at Two Word Tuesday.