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review 2018-07-08 22:30
Your Turn FOR Care - very specialized, read for work
Your Turn for Care: Surviving the Aging and Death of the Adults Who Harmed You - Laura S. Brown

This is a book about relating to elders, caregiving, and death for people whose personal childhood story was a horror movie, not a Hallmark card.

 

For those adults who are pursuing relationships with and/or becoming caregivers to elders who were reasonably loving, decent, and honorable in their relationships with you, those complications are difficult in and of themselves...

 

There is a group of adults whose dilemmas in dealing with the aging, illness, and death of elders are complex beyond the norm. This book is for those folks—for adults raised in families that were frightening, confusing, dangerous, sometimes criminal in their treatment of their children. The elders in these families are...people who...behaved in vicious, venal, abusive, and/or neglectful ways to those children. You are those children, grown into adults confronted with cultural and social demands to relate to those elders, and sometimes to step into the caregiver role.

 

This is an almost one-of-a-kind resource, since nobody seems to have put together two clear facts: a huge number of children are abused in childhood, and [in the US] a full 60% of elderly people are being cared for solely by family. That number increases to 95% if we include family taking any role in caregiving for a family member. So it is clear that many people who were abused in childhood are now caring for that abusive parent/primary caregiver in their elderly years. 

 

Surprisingly, there was nothing in the self-help literature (and there seems to be little or no scholarly research finished or even in process) for those adult children who are now either feeling pressured to care for their former abusive caregiver or who are already doing so. 

 

Obviously this can be problematic on a number of levels.

 

I'm only writing this review so others will know of this resource. Written in a very open and non-prescriptive style, readers can take what they need and ignore the rest. For those who want much clearer "do this" and "don't do that" guidance, this may feel somewhat nebulous. The bottom line comes down to "you do not have to care for this person who harmed you when you were the vulnerable one." 

 

There is tremendous personal and societal pressure to take on the role of caregiver to an elderly person, but that may be a very bad idea for a number of reasons -- both to the adult child and to the formerly abusive older person. (And not every abusive person becomes lovely and kind in old age. They may continue some abusive patterns throughout life.)

 

Unfortunately, the US medical system doesn't much care if this person terrorized you, they will assume you either should or must take on this new project. Armed at least with one resource, hopefully we can avoid everyone feeling like they must be the primary caregiver to the person who failed so horribly in this role years before.

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text 2018-07-07 16:19
Reading progress update: I've read 48 out of 343 pages.
Above Suspicion - Helen MacInnes

Oh, wow.  I'm only a few chapters in, but this is feeling mighty topical already -- even more so given that it's not historical fiction but was actually published in 1941 (note: it's set in the summer of 1939):

 

"'It is really very sad for a German to find how misjudged and abused his country is.  Of course, our enemies control the Press in foreign countries, and they have been very busy.  They have clever tongues.'

'Have they?  It is strange, isn't it, how criticism of Germany has grown even in countries which were once really very close to her.  I wonder how it could have happened.'"

(P. 25)

 

"'You are a very prejudiced person, I can see.  I suppose you will now lecture me gravely on the wickedness of Germany's claims to natural Lebensraum.  It is easy to talk when you have a large Empire.'

'On the contrary, Herr von Aschenhausen, I like to think of all people having their Lebensraum, whether they are Germans or Jews or Czechs or Poles.'

His voice grated.  He was really angry.  'It is just such thoughts as these which have weakened Britain.  In the last twenty-five years she could have established herself as ruler of the world.  Instead, she makes a Commonwealth out of an Empire, and they won't even fight to help her when she has to fight.  She leaves the riches of India untapped; she urges a representative government on Indians who were about to refuse it.  She alienates Italy with sanctions.  She weakens herself all the time and she thinks it is an improvement.'"

(P. 27)

 

"'Well, I suppose if a nation allows concentration camps, it will find it hard to believe that other people don't use similar methods.  Cheeer up, old girl, who cares what a lot of uncivilised people think anyway?  It's only the opinion of the civilised that really matters.'

'Yes, but it looks as if a lot of the civilised will be killed because they ignored the thoughts of the uncivilised.  Ignoring doesn't expose them, you know, Richard.'"

(P. 32)

 

"[...] And then bastards like von Aschenhausen come along all smiles and bows.  And wonder why people are not enthusiastic about them.  They blackmailed us with bombers one year, and go back on the agreement they had extorted out of us, and then expect to be welcomed as friends.  All within nine months."

(P. 33)

 

"There's nothing like self-pity for thoroughly dissipating a man.  And when a nation indulges in that luxury it finds itself with a dictator.  Wrongs and injustices come in at the door and reason flies out of the window.  It's a solution which does not flatter the human race."

(P. 43)

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text 2018-07-06 00:20
Summer of Spies - Tracking Post
Smiley's People - John le Carré
The Cutout - Francine Mathews
Collection: The Tailor of Panama / Our Game / The Night Manager - John le Carré
Black Roses - Jane Thynne,Julie Teal
They Came to Baghdad - Agatha Christie
Our Man in Havana - Graham Greene,Jeremy Northam
Open Secret: The Autobiography of the Former Director-General of MI5 - Stella Rimington
Who is Vera Kelly? - Rosalie Knecht,Elisabeth Rodgers
Berlin Game - Len Deighton,James Lailey
Above Suspicion - Helen MacInnes

Memorial Day Weekend -- Labor Day 2018

 

Finished, to Date:

Emmuska Orczy: The Scarlet Pimpernel (revisited on audio, narrated by Stephen Crossly) ****1/2

Agatha Christie: N or M? (revisited on audio, narrated by Samantha Bond) ***

Ian Fleming: Quantum of Solace (short story only; new / audio, narrated by David Rintoul) *1/2

Kate Westbrook: Guardian Angel (new / audio, narrated by Eleanor Bron) ***1/2

Stella Rimington: Secret Asset (new / audio, narrated by Rosalyn Landor) ****

Stella Rimington: Open Secret: The Autobiography of the Former Director-General of MI5 (new / print edition) ****

Francine Mathews: The Cutout (new / audio, narrated by Trini Alvarado) **1/2

Jane Thynne: Black Roses (new / audio, narrated by Julie Teal) ****

John le Carré: The Tailor of Panama (revisited on audio, narrated by the author) ****1/2

Graham Greene: Our Man in Havana (audio, narrated by Jeremy Northam) ****1/2

Agatha Christie: They Came to Baghdad (new / audio, narrated by Emilia Fox) ***1/2

Rosalie Knecht: Who Is Vera Kelly? (new / audio, narrated by Elisabeth Rodgers) ***1/2

Len Deighton: Berlin Game (new / audio, narrated by James Lailey) ****

 

John Le Carré: George Smiley Cycle

The Spy Who Came in From the Cold (revisited on audio, narrated by the author) *****

The Looking Glass War (new / audio, narrated by Michael Jayston) ***1/2

Smiley's People (revisited on audio, narrated by Michael Jayston) *****


 

Currently Reading:

Helen MacInnes: Above Suspicion
 

 

 

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text 2018-07-06 00:00
Women Writers Bingo / Project: Tracking Post

 

Read:

A - Margery Allingham: The Crime at Black Dudley, Mystery Mile, Look to the Lady, Police at the Funeral, Sweet Danger, Death of a Ghost, Flowers for the Judge, The Case of the Late Pig, Dancers in Mourning, The Fashion in Shrouds, Traitor's Purse, and The Tiger in the Smoke (all new); The Man With the Sack (revisited on audio);

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Half of a Yellow Sun (new);

Margaret Atwood: The Penelopiad (new) and The Blind Assassin (both audio)

B - Anne Brontë: The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (revisited on audio)

C - Helen Czerski: Storm in a Teacup (new);

Agatha Christie: The Moving Finger, One, Two, Buckle my Shoe, Murder Is Easy, They Do It With Mirrors, N or M?, and Ordeal by Innocence (all revisited on audio), Crooked House (revisited on audio and DVD), Destination Unknown and They Came to Baghdad (both new)

D - Margaret Drabble: The Red Queen (new)

E -

F -

G - Elizabeth George: For the Sake of Elena, Playing for the Ashes, and Well-Schooled in Murder (all revisited on audio);

Elizabeth Gaskell: Cranford (revisited on audio) and Cousin Phillis (new)

H - Radclyffe Hall: The Well of Loneliness (new);

Mavis Doriel Hay: Death on the Cherwell (new);

Patricia Highsmith: The Talented Mr. Ripley (revisited on audio);

Kathryn Harkup: A Is for Arsenic (new)

I -

J - P.D. James: The Mistletoe Murder and Other Stories (new), Original Sin, Death of an Expert Witness, Unnatural Causes, and The Skull Beneath the Skin (all revisited on audio)

K - Rosalie Knecht: Who Is Vera Kelly? (new)

L -

M - Val McDermid: The Distant Echo and Trick of the Dark (both new);

Ngaio Marsh: Death in a White Tie, Off With His Head (aka Death of a Fool), Clutch of Constables, Death at the Dolphin (aka Killer Dolphin), Hand in Glove, and Death in a White Tie (all revisited on audio);

Francine Mathews: The Cutout (new)

N -

O - Emmuska Orczy: The Old Man in the Corner (new) and The Scarlet Pimpernel (revisited on audio)

P - Anne Perry: A Dangerous Mourning and The Whitechapel Conspiracy (both new);

Ellis Peters: The Sanctuary Sparrow and Dead Man's Ransom (both revisited on audio)

Q -

R - J.K. Rowling (writing as Robert Galbraith): The Cuckoo's Calling, The Silkworm, and Career of Evil (all new);

J.K. Rowling: Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (all on audio);

Stella Rimington: Secret Asset and Open Secret (both new)

S - Dennis McCarthy & June Schlueter: "A Brief Discourse of Rebellion and Rebels" by George North -- A Newly Uncovered Manuscript Source for Shakespeare's Plays (new);

Dorothy L. Sayers: Unnatural Death (revisited on audio)

T - Josephine Tey: Brat Farrar and The Franchise Affair (both new);

Amy Tan: The Chinese Siamese Cat (new);

Jane Thynne: Black Roses (new)

U -

V -

W - Ethel Lina White: The Lady Vanishes (aka The Wheel Spins) and The Spiral Staircase (aka Some Must Watch) (both new);

Patricia Wentworth: Miss Silver Intervenes, Latter End, Poison in the Pen, and The Watersplash (all new);

Kate Westbrook: The Moneypenny Diaries: Guardian Angel (new)

X -

Y -

Z - Juli Zeh: Schilf (English title: Dark Matter) and Unterleuten (both new)

 

Free / center square: [???]

 

On the card, I am only tracking new reads, not rereads.

 

Read, to date in 2018:

Books by female authors: 77

- new: 49

- rereads: 28

 

Books by male authors: 38

- new: 34

- rereads: 4

 

Books by F & M mixed teams / anthologies: 1

- new: 1

- rereads:

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text 2018-07-04 17:14
Ella's A-Z Women of Color Author Challenge

I got my act together and figured this out. My goal this year was to read more authors of color, so my challenge is Authors of Color and I purposely used women's names first rather than the men's because female authors, especially many of these newer ones with first books, need as much championing as possible. Once I finished my female books, I realized this is doable without any men (though maybe next year I'll try to focus more on Men of Color b/c they are the smallest percentage of my reading, it seems.) I'd like to switch out Morgan Parker's poetry book for a novel, so I'll be looking for novels by women of color with last names starting with D, P, Q, R, V and X in the next few months. 

Some letters I could list many authors for, so in the interest of fairness, I've simply gone by date. If I read someone/a book earlier, I've used that author and book. 

 

**EDIT** Fixed the links - they all should point ONLY to Booklikes pages now. 

Ella's 2018 A-Z Female Authors of Color (By LAST name only.)

✔️ A) Stay with Me by Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀
✔️ B) The Mothers by Brit Bennett
✔️ C) Fruit of the Drunken Tree by Ingrid Rojas Contreras To Be Released July 31! Look for it!
D)
✔️ E) Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi
✔️ F) The Girl from the Garden by Parnaz Foroutan
✔️ G) Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
✔️ H) Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
✔️ I) We Are Never Meeting In Real Life by Samantha Irby  
✔️ J) An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

✔️ K) The Leavers by Lisa Ko
✔️ L) Everything Here Is Beautiful by Mira T. Lee
✔️ M) Tar Baby by Toni Morrison
✔️ N) Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
✔️ O) The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka
✔️ P) There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé by Morgan Parker (poetry)
Q)
R)
✔️ S) Feel Free by Zadie Smith
✔️ T) Heads of the Colored People by Nafissa Thompson-Spires
✔️ U) Everybody's Son by Thrity Umrigar
V)
✔️ W) Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward
X) 
✔️ Y) Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto
✔️ Z) American Street by Ibi Zoboi


Still need D, Q, R, V & X to have a full house of alphabetical authors of color who identify as female. 

 

Any suggestions of good books for those slots are most welcome! 

 

 

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