Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Book of the Month, Jan. 2012

I love books. They're fun, educational, and they're totally old school--at least the paperbound contingent.

January is the time of resolutions, a concept that aggravates me to no end. Self-improvement should not be seasonal, only to be quickly discarded like a barren Christmas tree. It's a constant, never-ending battle filled with little wins and bigger losses. You can't just utter a goal and think you're salvaged.

And even if that resolution is accomplished, there's no guarantee that it will last.

Last year Caitlin Shetterly (pictured) wrote a terrific memoir, "Made for You and Me," that detailed such a scenario. Shetterly and her husband, Dan Davis, were doing well in their artistic endeavors (she's a writer and performer; he's a photographer) but felt limited by their existence in New England. So they headed out to Los Angeles, confident that their talents and romantic notions of the city would keep them afloat.

Things started off well, then the Great Recession ravaged their careers. Money became scarce, their family and friends were 3,000 miles away. And in the middle of this Shetterly found out she was pregnant.

I raved about the book for BookPage, but what has resonated with me a year later is the realization that there's no such thing as a happy ending. Things go well and collapse. You rebuild. Shetterly shows us that life is about continually striving toward something, even when the roof is caving in.

That's it for now. Until next month, read in peace.

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