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Nathalie Gorman (16 posts)
Every Monday, we'll be letting you know about new releases the editors at O and Oprah.com couldn't stop reading. This week, we're transfixed by the stories of seven women in:
By Katie Ward
The old saying that a picture is worth a thousand words gets trotted out pretty regularly, but we so infrequently stop to think what it means. In this luminously vulnerable debut novel, Katie Ward takes seven real images of women reading and imagines a story for each one. From a young girl struggling with an unintended pregnancy in 1333 to a performer photographed by her less flamboyant but much more talented sister in the Victorian era to an adolescent who's fixated on a much older man during World War I, Ward's characters are so utterly relatable that you'll feel you know them after a few sentences. Yet none of them appears for more than a chapter, transforming each tale into a snapshot of a woman’s life. At first, the brevity of interaction is disappointing, because getting to know the characters is such a pleasure. But as you go (and the pages in this book do turn quickly), Ward's reason for creating these short portraits becomes clearer. The sketches she composes are an invitation to the "girl reading" (that's you!) to go further on your own, to imagine the characters' next chapters, or even their whole lives, to enjoy the infinite imaginative possibilities offered by a finite portrait. If you dig into the stories, you'll get far more than a mere thousand words. In fact, you'll discover, as one of Ward's characters says, that "there is a world under” each and every one.
Every Monday, we'll be letting you know about new releases the editors at O and Oprah.com couldn't stop reading. This week, we're obsessed with a paperback, the new edition of:
The Empty Family
By Colm Tóibín
9 books that will help you change your life
Find a (sort of) sequel to your favorite recent read
We've all got stuff that needs to be gotten rid of (ahem, those candles in the pretty color that you won't throw away even though they're really done, or that skirt that it would be so nice to fit into), but some people are a little bit more, shall we say, intense about keeping stuff than the rest of us.
Enter Peter Walsh and the second season of his show, Extreme Clutter, in which he takes on
the truly tough cases, from people who keep so much in their homes that they're
"ashamed to open the front door" to those who insist that they don't
have hoarding problems (even though they really do). In the first episode (clip below), Peter charges head on into one woman's
overstuffed home. She’s paralyzed—unable to let go sentimental items—and she’s
one of Peter’s toughest challenges. Find out the key lesson he taught that
helped her find the way out of the mess.
Zach Anner, a winner of the Your OWN Show competition, is not your average travel show host: due to his cerebral palsy, he's confined to a wheelchair. But he has zero interest in letting that get in his way. Instead, he cruises around the country, water skiing for the first time and creating custom milkshakes and naming them after himself (Zach Anner's Handi-Cappucino, in case you were curious). He's certainly endeared himself to viewers: The New York Times calls him "witty and charming and mildly zany."
But don't just take the Gray Lady's word for it: Two full episodes of his show are now up on the web:
To see more of Zach’s adventures, tune in to Rollin’ With Zach, Mondays 8/7c.
Have you ever met a woman who has literally never turned on a stove? Or a man well into his adult years who still goes to Mom's for dinner every night because cooking is just too much for him? Well, Kristina Kuzmic has, and she's absolutely not okay with it.
Starting this Saturday, the woman sometimes known as The Ambush
Cook will be storming the kitchens of strangers who need culinary instruction. Her very
raw recruits in this battle will be put through their onion-chopping paces by their drill sergeant (whose
basic training methods involve enforced dancing at the cutting board—and lots
of it). By the end of boot camp, they will have gotten past their nerves and on
to making braised short ribs.
After witnessing the Ambush Cook in action, viewers (both the skillet shy and the accomplished-but-lazy chefs among them) will surely feel compelled to take up the spoon and begin to cook. And therein lies Kirstina's real victory.
Imagine a demeanor like Eeyore's—gray and profoundly mopey—just several hundred times bigger.
You've now got a pretty good picture of Flora, an African elephant. Orphaned as a baby and adopted by circus owner David Balding to be the star of his show, Flora was raised doing tricks in the ring and being cuddled and fed peanuts during her down time.
Nonetheless, as she grew up, she became listless and occasionally ornery, performing under the big top reluctantly and occasionally blowing off steam by chucking stones at people with her trunk. It became clear that she was longing to retire, ideally to somewhere filled with fewer audience members and more elephants.