The Pyrenees---Southern France

The Pyrenees---Southern France

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

On Fire

      I recently got a book from my husband. No, he didn't read it. He doesn't read unless he has to. But I won't admit I'm enjoying it because he heard about it on NPR.

      NPR and I are like oil and water. When I am speeding driving down the highway, I enjoy listening to music. Loud music. Some voice droning on and on does not appeal to me while I'm tooling around. (Yes, I know I'm missing out on wonderful stories and interviews. If I was guaranteed I'd be able to avoid Prairie Home Companion, I might try it out. But Garrison Keillor is lurking around every corner.)



      John O'Leary, when he was a kid, caused an explosion in his family's garage. Their house burned down. John got third degree burns over all of his body except for his face and scalp. 

        Immediately after the explosion, John asked his two younger sisters to go into the burning house and get a knife. O'Leary wanted to kill himself. Instead of getting a knife, his youngest sister got a cup of water and threw it on John's face... and she did it once or twice more, which is why his face is not as burned as the rest of him.

       There's a "philosophical" page between each of the sections, but I'm skimming over those. I'm reading it more as a memoir than a life-changer.

        It's an interesting story, and since O'Leary lives in St. Louis, who knows... Perhaps I might run into him some day?

        Is there a book that changed your life? I'd love to know what it was.

12 comments:

  1. A book that changed my life? I'll have to get back to you on that. I've had a fairly long life.

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    1. Val--And much more ahead as well...

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  2. Wow. That book sounds like serious stuff. My first thought was that he must live with enormous guilt, and my second was that I hope whatever caused the explosion was an innocent thing, like working on a science fair project rather than a kid doing stuff he shouldn't be.

    A book that changed my life...that's a tough one. Can I name more than one? Charlotte's Web, because it saved me when I was seven, the summer we moved from AZ to MA.We stayed with my grandmother the whole summer and I was alone a lot (no other kids around), and I read that book over and over, made friends with Wilbur and the gang. It was the first time I realized that book friends ARE real friends. :) The second was The Mistress of Mellyn by Victoria Holt when I was ten. It introduced me to gothic romance, and I was hooked.

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    1. Lisa--You read a gothic romance when you were 10 years old? No wonder you have romance writing in your blood.

      Charlotte's Web. Yeah, that book and I had a close relationship when I was a kid, too.

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  3. I'm with Lisa, there are just too many to name only one so I'll give you two: A Pickle for a Nickel by Lillian More (one of the first books I read when I learned to read and oh, it was wonderful!) and Ellen Foster when I was ever so much older. I still get a little choked up, thinking of that book by Kaye Gibbons.

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    1. Cathy--So now I'm intrigued. I guess I should check out Kaye Gibbons' book?

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  4. I'm still stuck on you not liking NPR . . .

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    1. MZ--I should have clarified or given more details, because now I'm getting bags of mail. People are aghast I don't love NPR. I only listen to the radio when I drive, and when my husband and I go somewhere together in the car, no matter what day or what part of the day it is, "The Prairie Home Companion" is on, and I reallyreallyreally don't care for that show, yet he insists on listening to it. When there are stories shared or other shows on NPR, I invariably get sucked in, because they're wonderful. It's just the "buttermilk biscuit" show that I try to avoid like the plague...

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  5. I can't get past the not liking NPR either, but I get the "music" thing!

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    1. Mary--See my answer to Mama Zen. I guess I'm throwing the baby out with the bathwater...

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  6. This sounds like an interesting, but intense, read.

    Books that changed my life? H'mm. I'm probably a compilation of them all.

    Pat
    Critter Alley

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  7. This sounds like an interesting, but intense, read.

    Books that changed my life? H'mm. I'm probably a compilation of them all.

    Pat
    Critter Alley

    ReplyDelete

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