Diaryland Addiction and Anne Rice

How lame am I? I am actually performing active searches, looking for more diaries to read. I am officially addicted, just like Matt (laughed out loud as he described thumping his veins). I’m having trouble, though, because reading the diaries of people more than five years younger than I am makes me feel, well, icky. Especially when they discuss sex. Especially when they are teenagers discussing sex. Especially when they are teenagers discussing kinky sex. I am such an innocent. Such things would not have occurred to me ten years ago when I was last a teen. I don’t find I have much in common with the college students or the other mommies. Oddly enough, most of the mommies I’ve run across are a good 7-10 years younger than I am, too. Sigh. So I look for odd little things to latch onto in the diaries I read — commonalities, mostly. Funny, interesting writing. And (oh, the shame) basic good grammar. Drives me bonkers when I see too many errors. I’m such an English teacher… still. Does that make me bad? It isn’t like I get out my red pen when I read Diaryland, but honestly, some of the diaries are rife with bad grammar, and I just get too distracted by that to read what they’re saying.

Still like me? *Sigh*

So what am I reading now? Glad you asked. It is called Dance Upon the Air, by Nora Roberts. Shut up. In her genre, she is an outstanding writer. Anyway, what is bugging me is the plot is totally lifted from the Julia Roberts movie Sleeping with the Enemy. I mean, the woman fakes her death to escape an abusive, wealthy husband. She settles in a small town. In both stories, the husband was anal-retentive about how the wife kept house, so in both instances, the women sort of “let go” of that “everything must be perfect” mentality. Both women also fall for a local good guy and push him away at first. The stories are too close. Which makes me wonder… is it close enough to be considered plagiarism? Hmmm… The difference is that in this book, the character becomes a witch. A real witch with spells and stuff. That’s why I bought the book. I have a long-standing fascination with the Salem Witch Trials that began when I was about 11. I loved getting to teach The Crucible every year. The movie with Daniel Day-Lewis is excellent. He made me cry at the end. I read somewhere that he married Arthur Miller’s daughter. Anyone able to verify that? Joan Allen was nominated for an Oscar for her role in that movie. Of course Winona Ryder is deliciously wicked. Hell, all the characters are played well. Anyway, the premise is that this island where the book takes place — Three Sisters Island — was created when three witch sisters who lived in 1692 Salem began to fear for their lives and cast a spell to separate the little island from the mainland (and thus be safe). Anyone know any other good witch books (besides The Mists of Avalon, and don’t lecture me about them being pagans, or whatever the PC term is today — you know what I mean — or Anne Rice’s books)?

I don’t like Anne Rice’s witch books. Admittedly, I’ve only read two — The Witching Hour and Merrick. I liked parts of TWH — the parts that took place in the past. I became enamored of the 1920s flapper witch Stella. But maybe it was her name. Stella was the name of an ancestor of mine, and I find myself drawn to learning more about her for some reason. Anyway, the parts that took place in the present sucked. I couldn’t put my finger on it until I discussed it with a student. What was it that was bugging me about that book? Then I noticed J. was reading it, so I asked her what she thought of it. She said it was okay but she thought Anne Rice wrote better when she was writing about the past. And a light bulb went on. That was it EXACTLY. I loved her first two vampire books. The third, Queen of the Damned, I HATED, and I think because it mostly took place in the present. I felt like she got off track when she told the stories of the vampires Akasha destroyed — Baby Jenks and the Fang Gang? And her husband’s awful poetry all throughout the book. Ugh. I really liked The Tale of the Body Thief, though. I didn’t like the other vampire books – Vittorio I’ve already written about. Armand focused too much on a narrow span of Armand’s “life.” Again, she has a vampire that’s been around hundreds of years, but she only discusses a short span of time. She said it was because she didn’t want to write about things that had been covered in other books. Wait! Ever heard of looking at it from the other character’s point of view? Hello? I’d have been interested in seeing what Armand thought of Lestat and Louis, hearing from him why he felt attracted to Louis. How did the Théâtre des Vampires get started? Come on… Same with Pandora. Here she has a vampire who has been around for millennia and she can’t discuss anything past Roman times? She could have made a series out of the stuff that Pandora has seen. And don’t get me started on Memnoch. I nearly threw the book in disgust when Lestat drank blood from the neck of Jesus. I’m not a religious tightass, but that was too much. She just keeps disappointing me (sniff). Why do I keep reading? Good question. There is something fun about wallowing in the badness of the books and just flat out bitching about them to everyone. If there weren’t, I wouldn’t have just fluently typed this bitch session in my diary!

Well, I gotta go put some food in my kid’s belly. She wants Captain D’s fish.