For those of you who’ve been to our humble home (or who have seen the video–we’ve moved since then but the layout is similar), you’ll know that we’re a very bookish family. Part of that comes from having two parents who are in graduate school, part of it is pure fanatical obsession with the written word.
As a young girl, my books were like dear friends. I read them over and over again–each one had a special place on my bookshelf. Every year for my birthday and for Christmas my best-loved gifts were the small stack of new novels that I would receive from Mom–often Newbery award winners or classic children’s lit. In recent years, one of my greatest thrills has been to pass on my copies of books like The Island of the Blue Dolphins, A Wrinkle in Time, or From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler to my own kids (who seem to appreciate the sentiment even if the books are now all falling apart at the spines).
While I’ve been ill for the last few months, I’ve read some good reading time. Here a few recent favorites:
***Book Three in the Twilight series (and will probably borrow the 4th from a friend soon). Does anyone else out there agree with me that Edward is getting particularly creepy and over-protective and Jacob is seeming a far more attractive candidate for Bella’s attention? (please, no spoilers for #4 in the comments, people!) I’ve learned that it’s oddly apropos to be reading about blood-sucking vampires when one is ailing in the hospital. Another good vampire read (not so much romance, but more sophisticated plotline and writing) is Angel Falling Softly.
***By far, my favorite recent read is The Book Thief, which was sent by a dear friend. At first I was a bit put off by the unusual story narration, but I persisted and once I was in a few dozen pages, I was swept away. I really thought I’d read plenty about Germany during World War II (my previous favorite being Ursula Hegi’s delicious Stones from the River) and wouldn’t want to read another book on the era. I was so wrong.
***A great diversion,Bonk: the Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, wasn’t as funny as I’d expected it to be, but had me enthralled anyways–I was especially fascinated by the author’s own participation in some of the sex studies that she discusses!
***For those of you with China on the mind, you might like The Dragon’s Village as much as I did. An autobiographical tale about land reform in revolutionary China, I found it hard to put down–it offered a poignant personal perspective on such an important and complicated historical moment. I wish I’d read it prior to my China trip a few years ago.
I’d love to know any books that you’d recommend for me to read while I convalesce. I’m open to anything except super-suspenseful mysteries and horror (because I’m still afraid of the ghosties who live under my bed). I love artful writing, but a hard-to-put-down plot-driven novel works for me, too!
[My kids, dressed as Harry & Hermione, reading the first few pages of the last Harry Potter book at a Midnight Madness book release party]
P.S. See how all those books in the top picture have white stickers on their spine as if they were in a library? A few years ago we cataloged all of our 2,000+ books according to their LOC numbers–because we are crazy like that.