I'm not back to normal yet - it could be weeks because of my underlying chronic illness - but I am sitting up this morning and typing this, so that's a step forward (though my brain still feels like it's encased in Jell-O).
We always love our books, but they are especially comforting at a time like this:
- I finished Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel, a book I've been wanting to read ever since its release. It completely lived up to all the hype - I loved this novel!! It's about a traveling Shakespearean acting troupe twenty years after a pandemic killed 99% of the population. I loved the way the author moved back and forth from pre-pandemic to post, hinting at connections between people that would gradually become clear. Though it was a bit creepy to be reading about an apocalyptic flu pandemic while I had the flu!
- I also finished listening to Code of Honor by Alan Gratz, a teen/YA novel set in Arizona about two brothers whose mother is originally from Iran. Having been brought up as 100% all-American, it is a shock to 17-year old Kamran when his brother, an Army Ranger, is accused of being a terrorist, working with al-Queda.This novel was absolutely gripping from beginning to end, and I finished it in only a few days! It is action-packed but also full of heart, especially in highlighting the bonds between the two brothers.
- Now, I am reading The Good Luck of Right Now by Matthew Quick for my online family book group. It's a quirky novel about a 39-year old man who's just lost his mother to cancer and is adjusting to life on his own...in part by writing letters to Richard Gere, whom his mother admired. This is classic Quick - funny and strange but also warm and dealing with serious issues around mental illness.
- I forgot to mention last week that I'd finally finished a nonfiction book that I'd been reading just a bit at a time, How to Live Well with Chronic Pain and Illness: A Mindful Guide by Toni Bernhard. Toni is a dear friend of mine who has the same immune disorder I do, and this is the third of her books that applies the basic tenets of Buddhism to life, in this case life with chronic illness. As always, I ended up with dozens of pages tabbed and found her book enlightening and helpful.
- My husband, Ken, finished The Eye, the Ear, and the Arm by Nancy Farmer, a middle-grade science fiction novel by one of our favorite authors. Our son read this one, and it's on my list, too!
- Next, my husband took my advice and read This Side of Wild by Gary Paulsen, a hilarious collection of real-life animal stories for middle-grade readers by the renowned wilderness adventure writer. He enjoyed it, too.
- Now, Ken is reading a Christmas gift from me, The Girl in the Spider's Web by David Lagercrantz. This is the continuation of Stieg Larsson's Millennium series starring the character Lisbeth Salander. We both loved the first three books and hope that this new author is able to fill Larsson's shoes.
- Jamie, 21, was home all week and too sick to go to classes, so he did a lot of reading, too. He's been re-reading one of his favorite series, The Sorcerer's Path series by Brock Deskins. Last time I checked, he said he'd re-read Books 1 through 4!
What are you and your family reading this week?
What Are You Reading Monday is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date, so head over and check out her blog and join the Monday fun! You can also participate in a kid/teen/YA version hosted by Unleashing Readers.