Reading Addict

When Language Fails by Rebecca Howard

It happens once a week at choir practice on Wednesday evening.  Reading through a new piece of music will undoubtedly raise the question of whether or not to modify gendered language.  There’s only so much you can do with the words “king,” “father” and “lord” before you’ve made a piece of music entirely absent of lyricism.  Typically, the director will ask how strongly we feel about changing the language and a few eyes will dart to me, wondering what the most vocal resident feminist will suggest.  Ty

Attachments, Re@l Love, and Me by Laura Raphael

I fell in love with my future husband through email in the year 2000. If I were a Jane Austen heroine, it would have been missives written with a quill by candlelight by Mr. Raphael and Miss Clapp, but in our case, it was the then-fairly-new phenomenon of an online dating site, the odd screen-names of “poewhit” and “bookchick”, and the far-less romantic electronic bits and bytes, zeroes and ones.

 

Rekindling an Old Flame by Rebecca Howard

Sometimes the memory of a book is better than the book itself.  It can be a little heartbreaking to reread a novel that greatly impacted you in your teenage years only to discover that the main character is whiny, narcissistic, selfish, and deluded.  Or, you might realize that the language you thought was so fluid and poetic is actually sappy, overworked mush.  Wuthering Heights is among one of my favorite novels, but I read it twenty yea

Now Read This (Please)! by Rebecca Howard

Rebecca HowardAs a readers’ advisory librarian, I normally don’t push books I’ve read onto others who might not share my reading interests and preferences. Normally. But, I’m not immune to book evangelism—the need to convince others that the book that has changed your life will undoubtedly change theirs, too.

Epic Proportion by Rebecca

When I say Oedipus Rex, chances are you have a pretty visceral reaction. My first thought is of someone gouging out his own eyeballs. I don’t know why that particular image has remained with me ever since first reading parts of the play in middle school, but it has. (It might be my affinity for the dramatic.) The story of Oedipus is deeply imbedded in our collective unconscious—whether from reading the play or studying Freud’s stages of psychosexual development. It is a story that triggers our deepest anxieties about identity and destiny.

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