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The past several days here in NYC have been just glorious, with warm weather and sunshine finally showing up, giving me freedom from tights and the motivation to spend an exorbitant amount of money for spring-y blond highlights. There’s no better way to jaunt off to work than tightless, trenched, coffee in hand and to traipse through Washington Square Park en route.
An iconic spot, the arch at Washington Square park is recognizable and has been featured in many movies (and blown-up in some, like that Zombie, world-ending one with Will Smith). It also graces the jacket, and the title, of Joanne Rendell’s second novel, CROSSING WASHINGTON SQUARE.
“A charming, witty, and cerebral novel.”
-Nicola Kraus, co-author of The Nanny Diaries
Residing solidly in the chick-lit category, this title offers more than just the expected romantic encounters. Maybe because Rendell has a PhD in English Literature, this book is peppered with references to classics that I felt guilty for not having yet read. Following a likable, English teacher NYC implant from the South (fittingly, a professor of popular women’s literature), readers sympathize with her character while looking back at their own college days.
The perfect light read for a gorgeous spring day! As still a relative newcomer to the city myself, I still find cheap amusement in the awareness I have when reading about NYC. Being able to nod my head and think “yes, yes I know where her apartment is.. that street corner.. that bar” has yet to get old.
Washington Square Park is an iconic, gorgeous attraction not to be missed on your next trip to the city. There are often performers entertaining the crowds, along with sun bathers, young mothers, and readers on the bench. It’s under construction now, so I eagerly await the renovations.
If you’re lucky, you may even see a sun-bather, like the picture I was lucky to have snapped last summer:
Remember the last time I talked about the potential for disappointment vs. choosing ignorance? Well, maybe that’s not exactly what I said, but I did admit to being scared to try something new that slightly deviates from a known, and enjoyed, thing. Ex: my love of the REBA TV show on Lifetime does not translate to her music, and when I tried to indulge in some of Reba’s greatest hits, it made me gag the next time I tried to watch her show. My actual point was related to Joanne Rendell’s wonderful HuffPo writing and my fear of being disappointed in her book, CROSSING WASHINGTON SQUARE, which she thoughtfully sent me and proved me totally WRONG (terrible article synopsis, please read full “Reading: Hobby or Lifestyle ” . But, that book review is a glowing post for another day.
NOW on for my totally unrelated comparison. I’ve probably mentioned a time or two that I’m from a tiny town in Michigan, where you know the same people growing up through the years. Kerri and I were inseparable throughout most of our childhood, when one of her favorite hobbies would be to stare out her kitchen window and watching the activity of the cute, older neighbor boys (I always just wanted to play fairies with wings and wands of colored paper). One of them happened to be a very talented basketball player, so her creepy window watching culminated into a more mature crush around 8th grade.
Imagine her euphoria when just last week over Thanksgiving, the two were reunited at long last (and I do mean long; we’ve been out of high school for years). After several very cheap drinks, some coy smiles and hair flipping, he didn’t know what had come over him.
Now, nothing inappropriate happened of course (there is no scene from Nora Roberts to be played out here), but let’s just say Kerri said that real life was impossible to live up to her eighth grade dreaming.
And there you go, Kerri, at your request a post dedicated to you! Now pack those bags and come visit.