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Capital pays high interest

There’s nothing more delicious than tucking into a really good book on a cool, cloudy afternoon. That’s what I did today and finished capital reading John Lanchester’s “Capital”, a book about the lives of a cross-section of Londoners faced with 21st century problems in their everyday lives. The book’s title references money and how the high price of real estate in a London neighbourhood is a catalyst in each of the characters’ lives. The homes on Pepys Road which were affordable when they were built now command insane sums of money. The City stock trader has a lot of it and his wife enjoys spending it. The immigrant Pakistani family at the corner has considerably less, working long hours seven days a week running the local grocery store. A Polish builder is employing his physical skills and strong character to save for a better future. A rookie professional footballer gets a taste of it. A Hungarian nanny’s ambitions are constantly challenged. An artist’s grandmother who is one of the original owners of a home on the street when they were built dies. A Zimbabwian traffic warden’s life as an illegal immigrant becomes entangled in the plot. Put all these fascinating characters into the pot, stir gently and a nice little plot as intriguing as Agatha Christie’s “The Mousetrap” emerges.

The book has 107 short chapters which made me feel like I was making quick progress as I became increasingly more invested in the daily lives of each of the characters. The author intelligently and sensitively covers a number of issues including the death of a parent, greedy ambition, terrorism, parenting, love, ethics and the definition of success. When I read the last page late this afternoon I felt satisfied and happy. What more could you ask of a good book—a capital experience indeed.

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Bad Monkey, good book

When a male friend suggested I read a book by Carl Hiaasen entitled Bad Monkey I was somewhat reluctant. Scanning the premise on monkey1the book jacket, it sounded like guy story. Hiaasen resides in Florida and has written a number of books located in various southern cities including Key West and Miami. As I began reading I became increasingly concerned that I was getting into a Miami Vice-type story but I was urged to push on and I’m sooooo glad I did.

Bad Monkey is a well-crafted, excellently-written, funny story about a low-ranking police detective who suspects the discovery of a human arm on the end of a tourist’s fishing line is a potential crime rather than a simple and unfortunate shark attack. The story includes dozens of colourful characters whose lives intertwine in surprising and interesting ways. While the monkey has a rather minor role he is part of a common thread that pulls everything together and he really is nasty.

In fact, I enjoyed the book so much I’m going to read more by this author. Fun, fast read. And I didn’t even have to buy it. I downloaded it from the library. Bonus.

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Win a free prize in celebration of our 100th posting

Become a follower of BOOMERBROADCAST babyboomand you can win a free copy of the hilarious tribute to our generation

P.J. O’Rourke’s, The Baby Boom

Click the little box that says Follow (you will then have to sign on for the WordPress software which is the blogging software – and it’s safe and easy) on our Home Page and:

1. You will automatically receive notification of each new posting on BOOMERBROADcast as soon as it’s published.

2. Your name will be entered into a free draw for a copy of The Baby Boom by P.J. O’Rourke, a recounting of the evolution of our generation.

Find the FOLLOW button in one of two locations on my home page, depending on how it shows up on your screen.

1. A teeny black box that says FOLLOW in the lower right corner of your screen, or

2. In the left column below the Categories section, in a blue box that says Follow.

All existing followers and new followers who join are eligible. One entry per person.

Contest ends May 1, 2014. Winner’s e-mail address will be drawn May 5, 2014.

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