#40 ~ Jonathan’s Story; Finale

September 28, 2007 at 4:44 pm | Posted in Books, Guiding Light, Guilty Pleasure, Jonathan's Story, Jonathon's Story, LIfe, Reading, Reva, Secrets and Lies | 2 Comments
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I finished Jonathan’s Story last night and it felt somewhat like watching (or, in my case, listening) to a Friday episode and immediately being able to watch the Monday episode. A murder is committed, but it isn’t nearly as wanton as I had hoped. That being said, it was deserved from a vigilante justice perspective. I just wish the characters had more fun in the process (the fiction reader in me is evil, don’t you think?). The ending also answered the question I had about how well Reva and Alan were getting along after Alan found out that Sarah and Jonathan are alive and that Reva had been keeping that from him. So, that’s all good.

The last third of the book had scenes were Tammy appears to Jonathan and Sarah. Similarly to the way in which she appears to Cassie on the show, Tammy has words of encouragement and wisdom for Jonathan that he finds hard to accept. I did find Tammy’s first “appearance” to Aubrey somewhat hokie, but this is a book about my guilty pleasure, so why not? One thing that legitimately got in the way of book for me did deal with this specifically. As I mentioned in Part 2, there were a couple of instances where the name of the baby got mixed up in the prose. At the very end of the book, not knowing if the character was the baby or Tammy confused me and, therefore, the very end didn’t flow as beautifully as it could have.

I was somewhat disappointed in how quickly the ending came for the plotline encompassed within the book. I know that part of the purpose of the book was to develop Jonathan and Aubrey’s relationship. That was good. I genuinely like Aubrey and I think that Jonathan needed to move on from Tammy. However, there was the potential for some really juicy action at the end involving Reva and Alan showing up in Tourmaline and the murder. It all happened so fast and at such an accelerated pace from the rest of the book. To me, it felt as if it was rushed just to complete the book on time to coincide with the show.

All criticism aside, I enjoyed the book and I’m glad to have read it. I don’t feel like it wasted my time in the least. It was a quick read and now I’m ahead of the game – assuming watching Guiding Light is a game with other people who watch Guiding Light. (nana nana boo boo! ;P ).

Personally, it was nice to take a break from some of the headier and involved books I’ve been reading recently as well. I’m in the homestretch of my 52 books goal and I’m getting just a wee bit tired of the pace I’ve needed to keep up. There is a time and place in this life for guilty pleasures. I think I might have thought of counting this book as cheating earlier in the year. The truth is that in any way that you challenge yourself you have to take a rest period of sorts. Your body/mind/spirit needs it. Even God rested on the seventh day.

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#40 ~ Jonathan’s Story; Part 2

September 26, 2007 at 10:28 pm | Posted in Books, Guiding Light, Guilty Pleasure, Reading, Reva, Secrets and Lies | 2 Comments

I’ve now read through chapter 23 and there is a new lead in the “Who did Reva and Alan kill” mystery: Keith. Yay! Wouldn’t it be nice to live vicariously through Reva for that one? 😉

Okay. I know that this book is a guilty pleasure and not much more “literary” than a dime romance. Still, obvious errors that should have been caught by a content editor stick out to me like a sore thumb. Thus far, there have been three:

  1. Aubrey leaves her job at the daycare to get the staff pizza because her co-workers couldn’t stomach another club sandwich. Within a matter of pages, Aubrey actually purchases club sandwiches for them. Hmm… I would have been pretty pissed off if I were Noelle or Nancy.
  2. One of Aubrey’s days off begins by a violent confrontation with her father. He ends up pinning her by her throat to the wall. Although Aubrey doesn’t think it will bruise, she covers her neck with a scarf just before she leaves for work. Apparently days off in Tourmaline don’t last very long.
  3. Jonathan (J.B.) tells everyone in Tourmaline that his daughter’s name is Tammy. In one scene Aubrey calls her Sarah. I was waiting for the big “How the hell did you know?” scene, but it never came. Aubrey next calls the baby Tammy.

I should finish the book tonight or tomorrow. I have to say that while this book has been a fast read, it’s taking forever for Jonathan and Aubrey to get together. Maybe the time frame of the story told should have been longer so that we could see more of the two together. As it is, there’s only about 90 pages left and Reva and Alan haven’t even found out Jonathan is in California. I hope this doesn’t end quickly after a draggy-ish middle.

Ray of Light

September 24, 2007 at 9:42 pm | Posted in Amazing Narrator, Guiding Light, Guilty Pleasure, Historical Fiction, Jonathan's Story, LIfe, My Life with Books, Reading, Reva | Leave a comment
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Today I’ve been catching up on my Guiding Light episodes so that I don’t get hit broadsided while reading Jonathan’s Story.  It was while listening to Marina whining about loving Cyrus but being unable to stop being the straight-laced Cooper that she is that I had a mini-personal revelation.  I love Reva for the same reasons I love Scarlett O’Hara and Elizabeth Winthrop – they move mountains to be the person they want to be.  Sure, Reva doesn’t have quite the strict societal norms with which Scarlett and Elizabeth had to contend, but that doesn’t make her any less her own woman.  I like Marina Cooper and I love Melanie Wilkes, but they are not the reasons why I read or listen to soap operas.  I want to experience all that it out there in this world.  I’m sorry, but you just can’t do that through people who are as thoroughly kind and self-deprecating.

What does this say about me?  Well, I guess it says that I define “making the most out of life” as experiencing all (well, most) of what this world has to offer.  I do not find that through reading the lives of saints (either secular or otherwise).  Good people are the backbone of this world. There’s no doubt about it.  However, the individuals who push and question and scandalize that have a greater impact on where society heads.  I suffer from too much guilt and anxiety to do as I damn well please and to hell with everyone else.  As I get older this is less problematic, but I don’t see myself as a woman who will change the world.  Instead, I will champion those women and men (let’s not forget them) who have done what I might have liked to do by reading about their lives and reporting to my readers here.

I hope this doesn’t make me sort of voyeur or a purveyor of personality pornography…  Strike that.  So what if it is?  Reva, Scarlett, or Elizabeth wouldn’t feel guilty about it – at least not for long.

When Passions Collide

September 10, 2007 at 9:16 pm | Posted in Books, Guiding Light, Jonathan's Story, Jonathon's Story, Reading, Reva, trashy magazines | Leave a comment

I love to read.  I love Guiding Light.  I’ll take it a step further and admit that I love to read about Guiding Light in soap opera magazines.  I’m not, however, very enthusiastic that the powers that be are in the process of tying my hands and making me read a BOOK about Guiding Light.

Per a CBS Daytime-specific magazine, I’ve just learned that a new book will be hitting the shelves next week that details what has happened with Jonathan and Sarah after he faked his death to get Alan Spaulding out of their lives.  [Side note: I got a chance to meet Ron Raines in the flesh several years ago.  Danny drove me to Lynchburg and it was an incredible experience.  He was perfectly pleasant and even got in character a little bit for me.] Usually, such details would be fleshed out over time once the character(s) return to town.  This time, it appears as though you have to read the book to find out and to be able to completely understand Alan and Reva’s absence.  I’m not sure that I like that.

I have watched Guiding Light since one afternoon in my high school years.  Around about that time, I was tired of Frisco and Felicia’s Asian Quarter story line and happened to get up and turn the channel.  The moment I saw Reva Shayne standing on the bridge, contemplating jumping, I’ve been hooked on her and the lives of her friends and enemies in Springfield.  My loyalty to her was fused completely when I learned that Kim Zimmer grew up just outside of my hometown.  In college, my friend and I renamed the soap opera “Reva.”  To me, that’s just the way it is.  I love her best when I love her nemisis.  Annie, I miss you!

Once I started working full-time, I had to read the paper and stand in the grocery store reading soap opera magazines to keep in touch.  Once I moved to Virginia, I was able, with the help of my devoted husband, to tape Reva every day.  It was wonderful – even during the Reva clone days.  The stench of that plot line can still be smelled off and on, but what’s a Reva devotee to do?

After having children, I resorted to reading the story recaps in the paper on the Internet.  When I discovered that CBS was making netcasts available, I jumped in whole hog.  I may not always stay up to date (I’m a week behind as I write this – with an episode playing in the background), but I love being able to have Reva marathons.  I’m delighting in her current story line with Jeffrey and Olivia.  It’s great.

This all brings me back to trashy soap magazines.  I bought one last night because there was a picture of Reva on the cover with the word “OUT!” over top of it.  That is when I read about the new book coming out.  I love Jonathon.  I love everything about him.  In fact, his story line getting to know his long lost mother Reva was front and center the day that Allison was born.  It even made me laugh.  Do I want to have to pay even Amazon prices to read his story after the car crash?  Do I like having to shell out $15 or more to keep current with my soap?  Umm…  Not so much.

When it comes to books, I like to read things with substance.  Granted, there doesn’t always have to be the Great American novel sitting on my night stand, but you’ll never find me reading trash (I save that for my time with Reva).  I’ve never read a Harlequinn romance.  I’ve never bought a bodice ripper.  How do I come to grips with Jonathon’s Story?  Which of my great loves is going to win out – Reva or literature?  Juice in concentrate or manna from the heavens?  I’m not trashy soaps.  I love them.  They just have their place, right?

Still, everyone has bought a less than thoughtful book at least once in their lives, right?  $15 isn’t all that much to spend for all of the joy I received over the years and to help fund those wonderful netcasts, right?  One trashy pleasure won’t ruin my taste in books forever, will it?  Will it?

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