Laurie Notaro: Toss the Book You Have in Your Purse and Read These Instead

Categories: Literary

Instead of reading Twilight, read The Brontes Go to Woolworths by Rachel Ferguson.
I was hoping this train would run out of gas or coal or whatever it is that trains run on these days, but now that the last installment is in theatres, it will be a while before the Twilight flames are done licking the brains of our young. In any case, I suggest a book that is filled with imagination, weirdness, what is real vs. unreal, and the undead in the form of the ghosts of the Bronte sisters. And the mother is in on it, too!

It is the tale of a widowed mother and her three daughters who live their lives as they spin wildly fantastic imaginative ones. But wait! There's also a mean nanny, a dead circus clown, séances, and while there are imaginary friends, including a judge, there is not one simple vampire. Published in 1931, it will probably be one of the strangest books you've ever read, but if you just relax and go with it, it's one of the most delightful and charming. Not a laugh a minute, but a wonderful example of fantasy crisscrossing over to reality.

To Find: Easy. Bloomsbury recently published the title with a pretty blue cover and is easily available online; in bookstores, it may pose more of a challenge. Well worth it.

Laurie Notaro
Stay tuned for new adventures with Laurie Notaro, and catch up on a few classics in any of her books including The Idiot Girls' Action-Adventure Club: True Tales from a Magnificent and Clumsy Life,It Looked Different on the Model, I Love Everybody (and Other Atrocious Lies), There's a Slight Chance I Might Be Going to Hell, and An Idiot Girl's Christmas at Changing Hands, on Amazon, or through her website.

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And the very best western fiction being put out today is by an 80's-something cowboy named J.P.S.  Brown, who lives on a ranch between Patagonia and the ghost town of Harshaw. Brown's "Forests of the Night" is considered by critics to be one of the best books ever written about the Sierra Madre Occidental. His semi-fictional series about his own family in southeast Arizona during the late 1880s is great reading and "Jim Kane" and "The Outfit" are masterpieces. His recent works - "The Spirit of Dogie Brown" and "Serpentine" are just as good as his earlier works. Several pieces of his writing appeared in recent editions of Arizona Highways. Joe Brown is a great writer who will put you in the saddle and on the trail.


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meyk morr money then yuv butt peeple jiz lyk it dare don't khar it

sucks butt sheez bedder then juz buk stuff in magz


Thanks, Laurie! (Although I did enjoy the Hunger Games Trilogy), now I have more books to add to my "To Read" list. 


Think kids fighting kids in a dystopian society gets your mouth water?

What? I reread that numerous times and still am stuck on stupid.


Correction - "The Spirit of Dogie Long," not Dogie Brown is one of Joe brown's latest works.


@kec1952 Don't fret!  I'll explain: there's an obviously unintentional error in that sentence.  "Gets" should be "makes."  There, does that help unstick you?  Sometimes we all need a little help.  :)

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