Wednesday, June 2, 2010


There are quite a few of us on staff who have a slight obsession with the television series Glee.

In case you are one of the unfortunate few who have not caught onto the Tuesday night phenomenon, it is a musical fun-fest set in high school. A struggling glee club attempts to get their act together and win against other high school glee clubs. Of course there are many obstacles they must overcome, teen angst, rival glee squads, school bullies, etc., etc., But the biggest obstacle comes in the form of the school's cheer leading coach, Sue Sylvester. The way "Sue sees it," a school glee club threatens her cheer squad by taking funds away from her budget. So of course she must disband the glee club and destroy Will Schuster, the plucky Spanish teacher/glee adviser. If you like musicals, and feeling good on a weekly basis, then this show is for you.

This past weekend, Jane Lynch, who plays Sue Sylvester the domineering arch-nemesis and coach of the high school cheer leading team the cheerios on Glee was seen around Western Mass. She was in the area to marry, her long time girlfriend, and Smith alum Dr. Lara Embry.

To pay homage to Lynch, whose acting chops include other hilarious and wonderful roles the Odyssey is going to look at some books that reflect her thus far successful career. Based on three favorite shows/movies here are the following books.

Before it was a televised sensation, glee clubs were steadily gaining momentum in colleges across the nation. Pitch Perfect, by Mickey Rapkin, is a behind the scenes exploration of the bizarre and inspiring world of college A Capella groups.

Pitch Perfect
Mickey Rapkin
Gotham Books

One of Lynch's break out roles was as Christy Cummings, the dog trainer in the funny mockumentary Best in Show.

Jon Katz's newly released in paperback Soul of a Dog. This book is a perfect companion piece because like the cast of Best in Show, Katz reveals how dogs are not only awesome but are soulful companions.

Do animals have souls? With his signature wisdom, humor, and clarity, Katz relates the stories of the animals he lives with on Bedlam Farm and finds remarkable kinships at every turn. ~From the Publisher's website.

Soul of a Dog

by Jon Katz
Random House

I honestly did a double take when I saw Jane Lynch in Julie and Julia! She played Julia's charming sister, Dorothy McWilliams, who falls in love with a more, shall we say "vertically challenged," man.

Lynch was, in my opinion, in the better half of that movie. Gone was the prankster comedienne. She was truly as elegant as Child's biography My life in France.

My Life in France
by Julia Child
Random House

Congratulations Jane and Lara! Come and stop buy the Odyssey the next time you are in the Pioneer Valley!


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