Lauren Baratz-Logsted’s picks
Well, of course I have That Book on my nightstand. You know, the one that everyone’s been talking about this year, the one that’s made the previously businesslike color of gray – or grey – become synonymous with experimental sex? Yes, That Book.
But how did it get there?
Prior to this last Mother’s Day, I’d purchased a copy of the Frank Langella memoir for my 89-year-old mom as a present. She’s always been a big fan of autobiography, biography and memoir. But as the day to give it to her approached, she began hinting, rather strenuously, that she’d like someone to give her a copy of That Book. So, never one to disappoint Mom and since we always give her two presents – one from me and one from my 12-year-old daughter, I went out and got her a copy. When she opened her presents, she was happy to get the Langella, but despite several variations on “You shouldn’t have,” her eyes lit up with glee at That Book. Who knew Mom had a penchant for the kink? Turns out, that’s not entirely what her atypical bibliophilic desire was all about. Turns out, even at 89, people like to be cool and over the next several weeks, Mom regaled me with stories about all the other people begging to borrow her book as she traipsed through assisted living with it tucked under her arm. That’s my mom all over: the coolest kid in assisted living.
Of course, eventually, Mom re-gifted it to me as she does with a lot of things, including the Langella. There’s only so much room where she is now and she needed to make space for more memoirs and…other books. So there it sits on my nightstand. When my daughter saw it, she wanted to know what it was doing there, clearly horrified at the thought that I might actually be reading it. After explaining about her grandmother’s re-gifting practices, it was time for some musing aloud.
Me: Do you think I should write something like that?
Me: Well, but wait a minute now. Do you realize what an insane amount of money the author has made off that book?
[Note: I’ve had many, many books published to date, but when my daughter once asked if that had made me a millionaire, I explained, “No, more like a thousandaire…and a low thousand at that.”]
Her: OK, but first we need to come up with a pseudonym for you…
And that’s all I have to say about That Book! After all, at this point, no one needs me to read it so I can tell them whether they should read it or not. But I can tell you about something else on my nightstand, something wonderful that I actually have been reading:
Born of Illusion by Teri Brown. Yes, yes, it’s YA – but we all know that those of us who are “of age”, some of us having been “of age” for more years than we’d care to count, have been enjoying all the phenomenal YA books that have been getting published of late. Born of Illusion won’t be out until June 2013, but I received an advance copy from the publisher and you can preorder it. It’s about a 16-year-old girl in Jazz Age NYC. Her mother is a fake medium, she herself is a magician in her mother’s show, and her father who she’s never met is reputed to be – wait for it! – Harry Houdini. It has magic, romance, and exquisite historical detail. And that’s the best book on my nightstand today!
Lauren Baratz-Logsted is the author of 26 books for adults, teens and children, the most recent of which is the adult comedic novel Pursuing the Times. While by no means as racy as That Book, one reviewer did post on Twitter that it has the “Best sex scene ever.” You can find Lauren at www.laurenbaratzlogsted.com or follow her on Twitter @LaurenBaratzL.
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