Summer Reading + Misc. Updates

Thursday, July 4, 2013 0 No tags Permalink

Summer Reading Update

The Interestings

I just finished Meg Wolitzer’s book, The Interestings. It’s the second book of the summer reading season. The first third was excellent. It starts with a group of teenagers art a summer fine arts camp. The group becomes tight over the summer, and it’s a connection they will share, for better or worse, throughout their lives.

Again, the first third of the book was fantastic. I couldn’t put it down. The second third of the book, following the group into their young adult years, was more difficult. Some of the characters found easy success. Others struggled to find order and meaning to their lives. It seemed to me that the characters became less developed (and less..interesting) as the book continued. Sometime through the second third of the book, I became bored and put it down for several days. When I did pick up the book to finish it, I plodded through the final third. It was mercifully short. And, in the end, with the loss of one of the original characters, I wanted to be sad and cry. But it just didn’t happen. I finished The Interestings feeling a bit wishful that the promise of the beginning did not carry through the entire book.

If you want to read the book, I’ll send it to you, free of charge (first come, first served). Email me at jessicaleegilbert (at)

The Art of Fermentation

Right now, I am just starting a non-fiction review with an author who was interviewed on NPR’s Splendid Table. It’s called The Art of Fermentation by Sandor Ellix Katz. It’s interesting, more than a recipe book, on the history, how and why of fermenting all kinds if things, and how possibly fermentation could help our health.

Next up for the fiction is Kate Atkinsin’s Life After Life.

Western Michigan University

Miller Auditorium

Last Saturday, Bob and I had occasion to be over in Kalamazoo. After we finished up with our required work, we decided to wander around our Alma Mater. Two brand new buildings I had never seen before, plus a complete and total demolition and rebuild of Sangren Hall.

Sangren Hall

Here’s the scoop on what happened to Sangren Hall. Bob and I had our Popular Art and Architecture class in the old Sangren. And I seem to remember Sangren is where Tim Allen met his wife.

Sad note…as I was looking up Sangren and remembering back to my favorite professor, Dr. Peter Schmitt, I read that he had passed away in 2008. He had a funny, dry sense of humor. He was only 72.


This past Monday, Mom and I drove down to Bowling Green to meet with Aunt Suzie, Gail, Sydney, Philip and Laura, and to meet baby Logan. We had lunch at Sam B’s and wandered around the Ben Franklin for a bit. It was a short trip, but so nice to see everyone. We really need to get together more often. I am so thankful to have such an amazing extended family.

Laura and Logan


Such a cute baby!

Aunt Suzie and Logan
This has been a fine week off work, a much-needed break.


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