We have ended the week with beautiful sunshine and open doors for the dog and cat. Now if I would just remember to turn the heat back on at night. Himself has been very busy prepping for putting trees to bed for the winter and we are also planning on a surprise for Eldest’s birthday in a couple of weeks. He spent the weekend in Seattle running Tough Mudder and for the second year in a row agreed that his mother knows what she is talking about when she says run more to prepare for the race. Time will tell if he will really listen to me this next year. Youngest had three exams and a paper due so he had his nose to the grindstone.
I am struggling this week to re-read Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt. It is this month’s book group read and I am not enjoying reading it the second time. Unfortunately I read it so long ago that I felt I had to reread it. I have also restarted My Fathers’ Ghost is Climbing in the Rain by Patricio Pron. I started it at the beginning again and find myself wanting to reread the first chapter over and over again – in a good way. I love how he is setting up the novel.
Here is what caught my interest this week:
I feel like I need a dose of atmosphere that actually takes me away so I was pleased to read the review of Henry Dunbar by Mary Elizabeth Braddon on I Prefer Reading. I enjoyed her novel Lady Audrey’s Secret and this novel looks to offer the same – atmosphere, deliciously vicious villains, old houses, revenge, missing people, and a possible love story all set in 1840′s England. This is available free on electronic readers and is on my download list.
If you are looking for a modern example of the sensational novel – Capricious Reader is reading The Seance by John Harwood. Set in Victorian England, Constance takes her mother to a seance seeking comfort after the death of Constance’s sister. The mother soon dies, leaving Constance with the crumbling manor house. In the fashion of the sensational novel, there are apparitions, strange happenings, blackmail, and assorted evil doings. Harwood’s first novel The Ghost Writer also sounds good and his latest novel The Asylum received a lot of buzz when it was published in May. Harwood is Australian and, according to Wikipedia, is more known for his poetry. Definitely someone I will be looking for.
One book that caught my interest as a possible read for Himself is The Lost Carving: A Journey to the Heart of Making by David Esterly and reviewed by S. Krsihna. Esterly is a woodworker who was inspired by artist and woodcarver Grinling Gibbons (1648-1721). Many of Gibbons techniques have been lost and Esterly has to rediscover them when he is giving a commission to help restore Gibbons’ work at Hampton Court that was destroyed in a fire. I love the title of this memoir which seems to emphasize the “making” rather than the object itself – the journey one goes through in any creative undertaking.
Another non-fiction book that caught my eye is Being Wrong: Adventures in the Margin of Error by Kathryn Schulz (mentioned by LitLove at Tales from the Reading Room). Schulz guides “the reader through the history and psychology of error, from Socrates to Alan Greenspan…” examining the history and influences on error and celebrating the inevitability of error. That sounds a little off-putting but I think what she is trying to say is that being mindful of the potential of error and seeing the other side of things leads to growth opportunities.
Finally, thanks to Stefani of So Many Books comes this delightful link to 25 Jokes only Book Nerds will Understand. I must admit to more than one “laugh out loud moment” and posted the David Foster Wallace on on Facebook for youngest to see and show his friends.
Danielle of A Work in Progress has another wonderful reading list – this one centered on London.
And on a more serious note, for those of you who enjoy poetry I strongly suggest you read Dove Grey Reader’s review of Her Birth by Rebecca Goss. Each quote from the collection of poems was wonderful – the quote from the end poem blew me away with its clarity and acceptance of the new in life.