Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Book Review: The Valentino Affair by Colin Evans

It is hard to believe this is a true story
and not a fictional novel.
The story sure is the stuff of fiction
and sometimes unbelievable that it is true.
In fact, I would have blasted the author
saying the story was not believable if it was fiction.
I guess I have to reconsider that parameter in the future.

Blanca Elena Errázuriz Vergara (April 9, 1894 – March 20, 1940)
Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - Call Number: LC-B2- 3008-6

The book is written in two parts.
The first part is the telling of the story.
Wow, what a story it is.
It was hard to put the book down.
If you like crime novels,
you'll enjoy this true story.
John Gerard Longer de Saulles (May 25, 1878 – August 3, 1917)
Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons -

The second part of the book follows the trial.
It was not as engaging as the first part
but still interesting.

I am not sure how the book deserves the title it has,
Valentino plays a role in the story,
but is certainly not the topic of the book.
It is almost like the author started writing a book about Valentino
and found a better story to chase
but included unrelated aspects of Valentino's life
just to fit the title.

Rudolph Valentino (May 6, 1895 – August 23, 1926)
Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons -

Finishing the book, I felt
I would like to know more about the aftermath of the trial
and what happened to the de Saulles son.

Oh, legal files are released in 2017
so there will be more details coming out soon.

I review every book I read on
I gave this book 4/5 stars.

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Monday, March 30, 2015

Left to Die

Does it kill you like it kills me? see these once beautiful buildings left to die?
Grand Entrance
Edited in Topaz Impressions 

The majority of the buildings on the Norristown State Hospital property are 
vacant and deteriorating.
Another Brick in the Wall
The Acute Admissions Building #17

They are owned by the state, 
so that explains a lot.
Building 17 
Edited with Topaz Impressions

Originally known as the
State Lunatic Hospital of Pennsylvania,
Norristown State Hospital continues to serve psychiatric patients today.

In it's day (1880s- mid 1900s) this hospital offered:  
a library
various clubs
electrical systems 
a pathological laboratory 
an assembly hall 
a theater 
a dancing hall 
cottages for special needs or interests 
industrial shops for residents to hone their skills 
beds for 5,000 (today 150 are occupied) 
the first female physician superintendent 
modern medical care
Peeking Inside 

While I would love to step inside and see these old sights
common sense...and the signs... say "Keep Out." 
The floors are collapsing - 
so looking inside the windows is all that is recommended.
Rapunzel's Window 

And you'll need a permit,
otherwise the staff or security will ask you to leave.
Waiting for the Bull Dozer

I don't know what plans there are for these buildings,
but in the current state
I don't see much possibility other than a bull dozer
in their future.

Norristown State Hospital
1001 Sterigere St, Norristown, PA 19401 
(610) 313-1000

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Friday, March 27, 2015

Made With Love

A little 
Every Day Things - 
A Day in the Life of a Suburban Girl 
Vol. 2
before I head off to a bridal shower.

I found these really sweet measuring spoons for sale.

How cute are they?

They are also a really nice quality. 
Like them? 
You can get them here at Greater Good 
and your purchase goes to a good cause.  

I am in no way compensated for this post or any purchase you make. 
I just like the product. 

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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A Day in the Life

...of a Suburban Girl.

In my first photography class in 1988
the instructor reminded us to take photographs
of everyday things
because everyday things won't always be everyday things.
He was so right.
Library Books 

In my recent life situation
I haven't wanted to pick up the camera.
But every now and then something
catches my eye and I think
maybe I should photograph that.

I Love My Honda - It is 80% Made in America too. 
Yup, I check those things. 

As part of my healing process,
I think I will do a little project on
Everyday Things:
A Day in the Life of a Suburban Girl.
Contemplating Which to Read First 

I have no idea where this will go,
but it is something
to do
to think about
to get back into the groove of life.
Who knows, this could be the only installment...
but I doubt that.
About that large print book on I don't need large print. 
There is a long wait list for that book 
and the large print version had the shortest list 
so large print it is. 

I picked these books off of a recommended list 
for me from
 I can't tell you anything about them yet. 
Have you read any of them? 

Everyday things - library books 
placed on the kitchen table 
just after picking them up. 
It doesn't get more everyday than that.  
No, I don't do Kindle, 
I'm a snobby purist book lover. ;) 

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