Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Beers and Books

(Note: I'm thinking that this week I'll go with a short fiction Wednesday instead of the usual Tuesday)

We met last night for our book club, to discuss A River Runs Through It by Norman MacLean. It was a good discussion. The story is full of lines and scenes that memorable, often humorous. I've never seen the movie, but knowing it had been made into a popular movie, I was actually expecting it to be somewhat more dramatic and plot-driven. Instead it was much more anecdotal, its themes much more subtle and understated. Some of the guys in our group are fly-fishermen (or aspiring fly-fishermen), and I think they enjoyed the book even more--one considered it, along with A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, one of the two best books we've read as a group. My experience in fly-fishing is limited to reading David James Duncan's The River Why and various other stories and essays (and my experience in fishing is droppin' a fishin' pole in the crick and being bored while waiting to catch something...bait fishing, naturally, which the fly fishermen look down on as so far beneath them it doesn't count as fishing). So while I wouldn't consider the book to be the best of those we've read, I did enjoy it.

Beer of choice: I decided to go with one of their new, limited-edition brews, the Bruiser Imperial Brown. A good bear, though not all that different from some of the other dark beers I've had there.

Our next book is Stephen Ambrose's Wild Blue, a book that had some controversy because of claims of plagiarism. I've never been hugely fascinated with the minutiae of WWII like some people I've known (except the resistance stories in occupied countries--those fascinate me), so I can't say I'm especially excited at this point. But I'm hopeful that it'll turn out to be well written and with interesting insight and details.

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