What I’m Reading

As an avid, life-long reader, I’ve found my hobby and passion for reading sometimes takes a backseat to life.  However, beginning my “directorship” has given me inspiration and reason to read something “real” every day.  I’m considering it professional development.  I’m footnoting these titles in my weekly column, but I thought I’d add a special page where you can see what I’ve read and read a short review.

Titles in 2017

I’m woefully behind adding my titles here, but this is one of the most current.  It is, as the title suggests, about octopuses (not octopi as we’ve been taught.)  They are scary smart, incredibly adept at adapting to their environment and have very distinct personalities.  I won’t go so far to say I’d like to have one as a pet, but I wouldn’t turn down the opportunity to hang out at an aquarium with them one afternoon!

 

Much like Ove, Anne Lamott uses her own ascerbic wit to describe the wonderful thing we call mercy.  Anne is genuine, heart-felt, and sometimes has a potty mouth, something that can be off-putting, but endearing at the same time.  Her insight into what really, truly matters is keen and having read many of her other titles, this one will be added to my personal collection (where I can write in it and make big exclamation points) because, like Anne, I need to learn more about mercy.

This title was recommended by a friend who reads many of the same titles I do.  I trust her recommendations and she did not disappoint.  Ove is a grouch old goat, as we’d call him, and I love him and still think of him, nearly a week after finishing the book.  It is simply the story of a life and of living and most of all, of loving.  I recommend it to anyone who can stand a dry, sarcastic, mumbling old man who loves, but has trouble demonstrating that love.

 

I am not fond of historical fiction.  I am not particularly fond of critically acclaimed or award winning books.  My duty as a well-read librarian forces me to explore some of these areas and boy, am I glad I did.  I haven’t finished this yet.  I’m listening to the audio version in my car and hate to get where I’m going!  It is the story of Cora and Caesar, two slaves who set off on the Underground Railroad, and the subsequent things they discover about themselves, and the human condition.  It has been a difficult read, well listen, but enlightening all the same.

This was a rather bizarre read, but oddly enough, I enjoyed it.  It’s is touted as one of the most influential books in Australian literary history and I can see why.  It is the turn-of-the-century story of a private girl’s school, a picnic to a “natural wonder” and the subsequent disappearance of three students and a chaperone.  One girl was discovered a week later, only to remember nothing.  One of the witnesses to the original four returned to search for them, only to have an experience he is unable to describe as well.  There are never any answers, but the span of the tragedy touches not only the school but the surrounding community.  It was the perfect rainy Saturday afternoon read.

I am so glad I finally found this book.  I will admit the language was a bit off-putting for me.  I am by no means a prude, but I’m not fond of conversational cursing.  (This is the very reason I put down “Catcher in the Rye.” Maybe I need to revisit.)  At any rate, I made it past the vocabulary to the heart of the story.  What a beautiful love story of a friendship and the choices made as a result.

I’m not far enough in to explain much, but it’s about a Utopian community, stuck in time and a women who has the ability to travel between the two.  Anything time travel, and I’m in with both feet!  I’ll let you know how it goes!  *ACL Copy

 

I am currently listening to this audio book.  The author is reading the story and when that happens, it doesn’t always go well.  However Ms. Jackson was an actress and her vocal inflections and dialogue is spot on.  It is a joy to listen to during my commute.  I’m about half-way there and can’t wait to see how it ends!   *ACL Copy

Product Details

I’ve long heard of Mary Oliver, spoken of in the same hushed and almost reverent tones used for Thoreau, Whitman, and even Annie Dillard.  After reading this compendium of selected essays, I see why.  My favorite was “Swoon,” the story of a spider who lived in the corner of the stairwell.  Being somewhat of a nature observer myself, I could picture exactly how it was described and she is painstakingly accurate and insightful.  I’m a new fan!  *ACL Copy

This was an absolute surprise.  The blurb on the back caught my attention.  This is down-home small-town life, with all the eccentric characters, family feuds, and drama one could possibly stand.  I love it and am determined to read all of her books.  *ACL Copy

 

I’m still reading this book.  It’s deep and chewy and takes a bit of concentration and meditation.  I absolutely love it.  It takes the history of time travel, beginning with H.G. Well’s “Time Machine” book and Victorian theories, quantum physics, and how use of time travel in books and movies has become a common part of our culture.  *Personal Title