Today I’m linking up with Modern Mrs. Darcy to discuss what I’ve been reading lately. As I’ve mentioned before, these are not really book reviews or book summaries. Just my random, informal thoughts on the books I’ve been reading lately. (But sometimes those are the best reviews, right?!)
Garlic and Sapphires by Ruth Reichl –
This is such a fun foodie memoir! Ruth Reichl is on a flight to New York City, headed there for her new job as the food critic at the New York Times, when the lady in the next seat informs her that her picture and several details about her life are tacked up in every kitchen in New York City. Obviously, the restaurant managers are ready for her and she suddenly realizes that she’s going to have to create disguises to visit these restaurants. It’s the only way to obtain an honest and true assessment of the food and service. You can imagine the hilariousness that ensues. She also learns valuable insight about people, her own mother, and herself along the way. It was an entertaining story and a great escape. I highly recommend it.
The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker
I thought the premise of this story sounded so interesting: the world is slowing, the days are getting longer, and everything (and everyone) is thrown off balance. The story is told through the eyes of a girl in middle school, who is trying to makes sense of her world (something everyone goes through in middle school) but also this bizarre new thing that’s happening to the Earth. In some ways, nothing really changes. Other kids at school are still mean. Her parents are still struggling. And, yet, nothing is the same because the entire world has changed. No one is certain of what tomorrow holds. Overall, I found it to be interesting, but also a bit depressing and somewhat cynical. And it turns out that I don’t want to go back to middle school even in fiction!
The Boston Girl by Anita Diamant
Set in the early 1900s, this book tells the story of Addie, a young Jewish girl making a way and a life for herself in a new country despite the obstacles of being from a poor immigrant family. It tells of the struggles of social status (or the lack of it) and difficulties that can lie in a Mother-Daughter relationship. It was written in first person – Addie is talking to her granddaughter – almost like an interview or as if she was writing in a journal. This author also wrote The Red Tent, a book that I’ve never read but that seems to provoke very strong emotions in readers. I’ve heard many mixed reviews of love and hate. So, I went into this book with that in mind but The Boston Girl didn’t provoke any strong reactions in me. It was a solid like.
Family Read Aloud
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
This is the story of Bilbo Baggins – a hobbit and therefore an unlikely hero – who sets off on a journey with a motley crew of dwarves and one beloved wizard. The Hobbit is the precursor to The Lord of the Rings. I hate to admit it but I doubt I would have picked up this book if it wasn’t for our homeschool curriculum. It would have been my loss because I ended up completely loving this story. In fact, my entire family was hooked on the story and the characters. It had so much adventure! We started it as a read aloud, which was hard and I don’t recommend because of the different voices/characters and long chapters, so we switched to the audiobook version on Audible (which is excellent). We ended up loving it so much that we started the Fellowship of the Rings immediately after and it’s been playing nearly nonstop in the car since, but I think you could read The Hobbit as it’s own story and not need to continue (in case you don’t want to commit to that many books).
Your Turn: What have you been reading lately? Please tell us in the comments below.
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