Austin Central Library

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The Austin Central Library is something to explore in awe. It is located at a prime spot along Lady Bird Lake with nice views on all sides. It cost around $125 million and has everything you could imagine a Library would have. Six stories, nearly 200,000 square feet, a three story clock with red grackles, a rooftop garden, a technology petting zoo, portables and MacBooks to check out on loan, a two story underground parking garage, and so much more. The building is full of light and people are everywhere to be seen, admiring the design and discovering their favorite reading locations. It will probably become one of my favorite spots in Downtown Austin to take a break and enjoy a book or magazine, so look for me there on some lazy weekend afternoon.

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The Girl on the Train

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This is the story of a girl who takes the train to London almost every day.  She has some interesting life circumstances.  At one particular train stop along the way, she begins to watch a couple at their house.  She sees something odd, and then the story gets more interesting.  I enjoyed the novel, and it will soon be a movie – I can’t wait for the film version.

No Baggage – The Book

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I read this book written by Clara Bensen.  I think I had high hopes based on the description from her website.

“Newly recovered from a quarter-life meltdown, Clara Bensen decided to test her comeback by signing up for an online dating account. She never expected to meet Jeff, a wildly energetic university professor with a reputation for bucking convention. They barely know each other’s last names when they agree to set out on a risky travel experiment spanning eight countries and three weeks. The catch? No hotel reservations, no plans, and best of all, no baggage.”

I had hoped for an awesome travel story, but instead got short descriptions of some of their adventures and long stories about their life philosophy.  It seemed like for them, travel was a race across countries with the intention of annoying the native population as much as possible.  And what great lovers of travel would actively look to cut their vacation short by actively seeking out a flight that leaves a day earlier than planned?  Travel should be about marvelous experiences that show up unexpectedly, and not about being drug along by one of the most annoying people on the planet.  I think for her next book she should travel alone and enjoy the little things that make other countries full of wonder.

True Grit

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The other thing you can do when you are not feeling so well is finish the novel you are reading.  This time I opted for a classic western called True Grit.  Probably almost everyone knows about this story from the movies that have been made.  It is about a 14 year old girl from Arkansas who hires a Marshall to help her bring her father’s killer to justice.  Read the book or see the movies if you haven’t already.  They are all great.

No Baggage

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Would you do this?  Clara Bensen from Austin met someone on OKCupid (a story in itself as this dude lived in a dumpster for a year) and then they decided to take a three week summer trip to Europe with the clothes on their back and a few necessities stuffed in pockets and a purse.  On the flight out, a flight attendant asked a great question – “What will you wear when you’re washing your clothes?”  Anyway, she survived and wrote a book about her adventures.  I think I know what I am reading next when I finish the one I am working on now.  If I get a chance to catch them in Austin, I will let you know what happens. For now, I am thinking about planning a trip somewhere.

Trigger Mortis

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This book was a pretty fast read.  It tells a James Bond story set in 1957 and includes adventures like Grand Prix racing in Germany and a space race rocket launch from the Virginia coastline.  As a bonus, Trigger Mortis contains previously unpublished material from Ian Fleming that Anthony Horowitz has been able to weave into this story.  If you are a James Bond fan, then go and find this novel.