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    This one made me weepy this morning. Girl finds out her bestfriend and roommate -- a 160-lb English Mastiff has terminal bone cancer and only has a few months to live. So armed with a bucket list of adventures she would like to share with her dog, they go off on canoe rides, road trips, visits to both busy spots and quiet spaces and, finally, spend a last day together by the ocean in Maine, where she finally finds peace and acceptance. This is real love, people.


    I still keep a journal despite having a blog. No matter how spill-all-my-guts-out open I may seem, there are many things I do and think that I'll just never tell. I've always thought it kept me sane to be able to express myself without fear of being censored or criticized. Whenever I pick up an old journal, even one from my 13-year-old self I realize that as much as I've changed so much is still the same. I just know how to dodge bullets faster and better. From: HUFFPOST Healthy Living, 01/20/15


    Which is why I've decided to keep this blog around, at least for a little while longer. I've always picked up a pen (or sat in front of a keyboard) any time I needed to make sense of my world; writing allows me to get into my head and get all my thoughts out without having to worry about how ridiculous I sound (that's where the editing comes in). From: The New York Times, 01/19/15
    This was lovely. The post is by a novelist who was asked how to encourage a young writer. It sounds eerily like the story of my life -- now all I need is to keep reading and keep writing (and, okay, start submitting). From: M Molly Backes' blog, 07/12/11


    Every day at work I see all kinds of female bodies: athletic, boyish, curvy, voluptuous, natural, enhanced, preteen, post-baby, postmenopausal -- thousands of different bodies I've seen up close and personal in my lifetime. This infographic shows that the description of the ideal female body changes every decade or so, going back hundreds of years. I hope that soon we define the "perfect" body as one that is simply healthy and functioning; that what matters is that we're comfortable in our own skin. From: Greatist, 01/15/15



    Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
    The Normal Bar: Where Does Your Relationship Fall?
    All is Forgotten, Nothing is Lost
    Gun Dealers' Daughter: A Novel: A Novel
    Crazy Rich Asians
    The Undomestic Goddess
    The Geography of Bliss: One Grump's Search for the Happiest Places in the World

    Gigi's favorite books »
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March 27, 2006



Once again, I can totally relate! I am in the LR Book Club and enjoy being amongst fellow fanatics. I, too, have an insane backlog of half-read and brand new books just waiting for my attention. I get a rush just entering bookstores (I know that sounds so geeky!). Usually, I order 2 or 3 books at a time from Amazon (free shipping!) and that gets me behind on my reading every time. I wish that you lived closer - you'd really love our book club:)


Hi Sandra - I think we both need to get on that website that catalogues your books for you (name is on the tip of my tongue) so we can cross-reference and see which books we each have so we can share nalang. I bet we have lots of duplicates, just between us!


Gi, next time I'm in LA we should really hit the bookstores. The last time we did was ages ago: Remember that paradise of second-hand books you brought me to, where I had to use a ladder to find The Letters of Scott Fitzgerald? I still have that book, by the way; it's a real keeper. I even used it for a course on writing, would you believe, back when I was still teaching. Now that Scribner's and Rizzoli's are gone, I guess we'll have to try some place other than South Coast Plaza!


i feel the same way :)

right now i'm reading something you'd find in the TV Law and Order with CSI mixed into it. Of course I have a chick lit (FOUR BLONDES by Candace Bushnell) waiting to balance me off :).

banzai cat

Hi Gigi! Just passing by via John Nery's blog! :-)

I was just wondering: if a backlog of 36 unread books is a mortal sin, what does that say about a backlog of a thousand unread books or so? However, at least my to-be read pile isn't threatening to crash down on me as I keep them in a separate closet-- you know, like shameful family secrets. ;-)


Hi John - That bookstore is still up and thriving (thank heavens -- a lot of the smaller ones closed shop when the B&Ns and Borders started expanding). Check this out:

Next time you're here, let's revisit for old times' sake, and I'll also take you to Vroman's in Pasadena. Plan? :)

Hi Dexie - I never missed an episode of "Sex and the City" during its original run that when I realized I'd never read Candace Bushnell, I was really, really surprised. Let me know how you like this book (or if you'd read any of her others), OK?

Hello Banzai Cat - A thousand, eh? Perhaps some may say you're stoking the fires of hell? :)


You got it, Gi. Maybe next year?

Banzai Cat, I know what you can do with your thousand occasions of sin. Donate some of your books to, ahem, some of us!


hey Gigi. I'll let you know :)

I've read TRading Up by Candace as well. i thought it was great coz it invoked so many emotions from me. mostly I was pissed off at how the character gets herself in trouble because of her greediness to be famous. she was like the little sister who keeps making mistakes I never had...LOL


Gigi I'm not as bad as you. So far I'm only back logged by 7 books next to my bed, but my list is sinful. And as for that old bookstore on Brand, I literally work just around the corner from there. I stop by Porto's for lunch and make sure to walk past that store when I'm on my way back to work. Browsing is almost just as bad, especially for me. I read a portion and make sure to write the book down as a must get so my notepad that I keep in my purse is getting a little worn. Good luck on that stack.


You shouldn't feel guilty. Books are more like friends than lovers, more than one of which we are surely allowed though limited by the same physical and mental constraints.

And don't think it's a one way relationship either. By filling your head full of another writer's memes you eventually spread them around as infectious ideas.

In exchange for book lust's fulfillment, your brain is being used for propagation and reproduction.


but that's wonderful, gigi! having 36 books in your backlog list, i mean...36 books just within reach, teasing you with promises of at least 36 different stories and different worlds to enter into...yumm...

i think the only reason i don't have that many in my backlog list is because i devour them 2 or 3 at a time...including furtive nighttime visits to my hubby's side of the bed to 'borrow' the books he's currently reading and tiptoeing back and replacing them on his nightstand before he wakes up... :-)


hi gigi, i think what you meant is LibraryThing. It's a very nifty database site that helps you keep track of your book collection.

I can relate with the lust and disgust thing. It's like that exhilarating feeling of finding a rare book and the feeling that comes after wherein you feel as if the bookstore hoodwinked you into spending on another tome once more.

Just dropped by Booksale and I had to steer myself from buying Poe's collected stories rationalizing that I won't be able to read it anyways.


Hi John - Why stop there while we try to set tradition? We'll spend a day of book shopping and then I'll cook a large batch of lemon chicken. Which you can then eat for days. :)

Hello Dex - I wonder if all my sisters feel the same way about me. Hmmm...

Hi Lynn -- Portos -- ahhhhh. A media noche sandwich followed by a slice of Tres Leches cake. I could eat the whole menu, seriously. And queueing up at the bakery just makes me want to order more. Sometimes I wonder if Atty. Gurfinkel has such a large client base because his office is almost right next to Portos. :)

Hello Rizalist - So true -- my books are always there when I need them, they never will betray me, and they bring me to places I've never been to or perhaps never will. And all I need to do is spend some time with them and give them a nice home. What a great deal!

Hi Petite - My husband and I would never read each other's books. I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad thing. Although we don't have to worry about the other "cutting in" what we're each reading, we both have our own tall stacks of books -- so high and wide I'm thinking of getting rid of our bedside tables just to make more room!

Hi Juls -- That's it -- the LibraryThing! Thanks :)


You have a backlog of 36? I have over 200. It's a shame, I know. Just finished rereading "The Great Gatsby" today but this doesn't count. I'm still left with the same number of unread books, some of which have pages that have yellowed through time.


Hello Gigi!

Sometimes, I have to refrain myself from getting inside a bookstore. I would end up with a couple of books whenever I visit one. I've managed to keep my backlog to five now after spending most of my free time sitting down and reading.

Have a fun read!


i don't know how many books i've got on my backlog. is that worse? =D


Hi Abaniko - You have such a huge backlog yet you reread a book (though I admit that's a terrific choice if you really must reread)? :)

Hello Duke - Ah, it seems you're the disciplined one among us!

Hi Sarah - Ummm. Do I have to answer that? :)


You should definitly have read Shopgirl first, it is a much better book than a movie... don't get me wrong, the movie was good but the way that Steve Martin was able to write from a female perspective just didn't translate to the screen...


Hello Manic - I loved the movie, especially that last scene where Steve Martin is looking at Claire Danes walk away towards her new lover, and his realization at that point. It was different from the book -- the protagonist in the movie was not dependent on him, or at least not apparently so, the way she was in the book. And you're absolutely right -- I was impressed how he was able to narrate the book from a woman's point of view. You can tell he's probably a man who observes and -- more importantly -- listens.

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