Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Mrs. Somebody Somebody and Spudnuts

This weekend, while traveling up north to Washington State, I finished "Mrs. Somebody Somebody."

It is the first in an on-line book club that I have started. (There are only a few of us, so if you want to join in, just let me know. ) We are reading a list put together by a panel from BEA, on "hot picks for book clubs". I think it was hot "fall" picks or something like that. There are 30 books on the list---we're in it for the long haul.

As I've said many times, I am not a book reviewer, I just like to read a lot. Having said that, "Mrs. Somebody Somebody" by Tracy Winn, just didn't do it for me.
It was touted as "an astonishing debut", "poignantly chronicling the characters", and "a rare achievement".
It was well written, I will give it that. I think that it was just not my kind of book. Each chapter was an essay written about someone in the mill town of Lowell, Massachusetts. So, while it did mention other characters from previous chapters and linked them together in a very flimsy way, there was no plot, and I guess I prefer a good plot. Or at least characters I like. The people from Lowell, MA were sad and depressed people and I didn't like them very much.

That's all I'm going to say about Mrs. Somebody Somebody in this post. We will be discussing it online in the next few days. July's book is "The Last Time I Saw You" by Elizabeth Berg, just in case you want to read with us.

If you have read it and liked it, I would be happy to know.  It just could broaden my horizons about the book.

What else besides read 3 books, did I do this past weekend?  I'm glad you asked!
While were were up in Washington, we went to the Spudnut Shop.

The Spudnut Shop is one of the last remaining maker of Spudnuts and it is in our hometown.
By 1948, over 500 Spudnut Shops had sprung up across the country. Spudnuts were advertised widely, with the slogan "Coast to coast...Alaska to Mexico". The cartoon character "Mr. Spudnut" frequently appeared in ads, restaurants, and even in parades.By the 1980s, however, the parent company closed, leaving all the franchisees to fend for themselves. The Spudnuts brand lost significant popularity, but it did not disappear completely; some 35 Spudnut Shops in 9 states exist today.

Spudnuts, donuts made with potato flour, are better than Krispy Creme, better than Dunkin' Donuts (except the coffee), better than any donut I've ever tasted. And, embarrassingly, this was the first time I've ever had a spudnut. I wanted to try them because I've seen them on the Travel Channel.
If you think potatoes and donuts don't mix -- think again. At Spudnuts, donuts are made from potato flour and then deep-fried to perfection. In addition to the spudnut, they make a traditional cake flour donut called a spuddy. Health-conscious individuals need not despair; Spudnut also makes spuffins -- a healthy, muffin-like treat. Confused yet? No matter what you order, you are bound to enjoy it (just don't call it a "donut").

It wasn't a fancy bakery, but kind of a divey little cafe, as you can see by the pictures, BUT, the whole time we sat there having coffee and eating our donuts, the line didn't end. People just kept coming in and walking out with boxes and boxes of spudnuts.
The people who worked there were very nice and it was clean, it was just old and funky.

I ate two....again....I was not Weight Watcher friendly this past weekend. I wanted to eat a whole bunch more.
Just so you know....we walked a lot while on our holiday. To counter act all the calories we ate.

They had these dowels that they let the glazed spudnuts hang and drip from.

and they kept bringing in more and more boxes to fill with dozens and dozens of spudnuts, which people were taking out the door.

It looks so innocent.  But inside it holds an addiction.  A Spudnut addiction, and it's hard to break free.


bermudaonion said...

I've read books that are formatted like that before and I didn't really care for it either.

I had to check for Spudnuts shops and there's one not too far from my in-laws that I'll have to check out sometime.

Pam said...

I do not like books in an essay format either, no matter what. They don't flow easily even when there is a connection it seems to me.

That is some donut shop! Yum!

pjw4442 said...

I grew up with spudnuts in farmington new mexico. It was right across the street from the Jr High and we went there everyday after school. They also sold them door to door it was a great job for kids, they'd load up their bikes and sell them by the half dozen. We ALWAYS bought a bag. They also had great french fries. What memories. So much better than krispy kremes.

Anonymous said...

Boooooo! I loved this book, and I went all bug eyed when I saw that you didnt care for it. each short exerpt did relate with small detail but the main point of them all was to grasp the authors depiction of lowell massachusetts. The people in this book had such great little stories, the kind of people that enjoy this novel enjoy the lives and relationships of others (the typical woman) I rarely find a book that makes me think about getting back to the stories all day.

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