Wednesday, November 12, 2014

What I've been reading lately

With reading, as in so many other things, I go through phases. Sometimes I am a frenetic reader, with one book going on my Kindle app on my (big fat) phone and one book being read at work and maybe even another one at home. I don't particularly like to read more than one book at a time, so I hate it when I go through those weird "reading frenzies" and, thankfully, they are usually short-lived and rare, and it is always an odd occurrence that causes them. Say, I start a book and leave it at work, then want to read at home, so I start one there. Or, I download something on Kindle and it is so fascinating that I can't help but start reading immediately - even though I'm already involved in another book ... you get where I'm going here, right? Definitely first world bibliophile problems.

Then, occasionally, there are times when I just am out of the mood to read. I find myself watching more movies and TV and listening to more music. But again, those times are rare, and do not last very long. The lure of a good book is too strong and I cannot resist for long.

In an earlier life, I volunteered as a reader for our local library. They operate a radio station for the blind and visually impaired which is staffed by volunteer readers.  Different hours throughout the day are devoted to the daily newspaper, current magazines, classics, bestsellers, various genres of music, interviews with authors, and a plethora of other topical and interesting information. I enjoyed volunteering there immensely and have often thought that when I retire I would really enjoy doing more of that. Reading gives me so much joy, I just can't imagine living in a world without it.

So I've been reading some really good books lately. Awhile back I read Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn and loved it. Loved it. Now, I've heard so many people say that they just hated the ending to that book, but I just have to disagree. Without spoiling it for anyone who has not yet read it, I will just say that I think that the end was fitting. They deserved what they got. And that's all I'm going to say.  Oh! Except that I went to see the movie last weekend with a couple girls from the office, and it was great. Seriously, the casting was brilliant. Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike were perfect. And Tyler Perry rocked.

Another really outstanding book I recently read is Orphan Train: A Novel by Christina Baker Kline. I like books based on historical data, and this one fits the bill. It's a poignant, moving story that I found hard to put down, and I highly recommend it.

But my favorite of all my most recent reads has to be The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd. Another historical novel based on fact, this book is a coming of age story of two female children - black and white - who grow up together in Charleston, SC during the 1800s, and who desperately wanted and needed to be more than what the confines of society and the time frame in history were ready to allow them to be.  This book has heart and soul. I laughed and cried, and was sad to see it end.

Other books I've recently read include:
  • Dark Places by Gillian Fynn
  • Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
  • Wonder by R.J. Palacio
  • The Last Original Wife by Dorothea Benton Frank
  • Open Season by C.J. Box
  • Night Without End by Alistair MacLean
  • There Was An Old Woman by Hallie Ephron
I know there are more, but these are the ones that come to mind as I'm typing this post. I have a few current favorite genres going right now -- true stories of survival, and historical fiction that is based on fact. I still am enjoying various series -- Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum's books, the "Miss Julia" books by Ann B. Ross, and of course, my most beloved "Father Tim" books by Jan Karon, and if you have not read them, I say run, not walk, RUN to the nearest bookstore to purchase (or your computer/phone to download) and start the lovely foray into the world that is Mitford.

More later --