Thursday, June 24, 2010

summer reads

Ah, summer.  When I was young, that meant extra time for reading.  I would finish my chores (yup, I called them that-just call me Laura Ingalls Wilder....) and curl up with a book.  If it was nice, on a blanket under a tree.  When I got a little older I threw my book in my bike basket and headed down to the river to my 'secret' spot.  I followed the adventures of Beezus and Ramona, and Laura and Mary, and the Boxcar Children.

When the days were long and the air shimmered in the heat, I got to ride into town with my mom and she would drop me off at the library while she was at the grocery store.  This painting was in the children's room, and each time I walked into the room and saw it, I was happy.  I knew I would be surrounded by books, and get to smell their pages, and pick out a stack of adventures to bring home with me.  I can still remember what that smelled like.

I found this same picture at a yard sale a couple of summers ago, and instantly bought it.  I think it was $3, I would have happily paid ten times that for the wonderful memories it gave me.

Summer is still for reading.  At the end of the day, I will grab my book and a glass of wine, and head to my patio where I will read until the bugs eat me alive.  If it's raining in the morning, I will stay in bed and cuddle in with my book until guilt overtakes me. 

All day, whether I am doing laundry, or working on bookkeeping for our store, or making dinner, or gardening, I longily wait for those moments when I can open the pages of my latest read, and forget about the world.  I read every single night before I go to sleep, I have reached the point where I cannot fall asleep unless I have had my nose in a book first.
Here is what I have been turning the pages of in the last few weeks:

"The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" and "The Girl who Played with Fire" by Stieg Larsson.  I like to think I know what is going on in the publishing world, this one hit me one night when Mike and I were at a wonderful independent bookstore-Magers and Quinn-in Uptown.  It is a publishing phenemenon (that I apparently missed the boat on for a few months...) and well deserved.  I haven't yet picked up the third one (I am cheap and wait for the paperback, or for my turn at the library.)  They are long, but you cannot put them down.  I regret that the author died of a heart attack at 50, and these three books are all we will have.  Although I hear Brad Pitt will be starring in the American version of the movie...

"Shoot to Thrill" by PJ Tracy.  I was an early fan of this mother-daughter author duo from the cities, but I don't feel this one was their best effort.  Still a good read, if you are a mystery fan who likes to recognize Minnesota locales while you are reading.  And good character development.  Maybe I was just distracted and couldn't fully appreciate it.

"The Way the Crow Flies" by Ann-Marie McDonald.  This one has been in my collection for a long while, it finally got it's turn.  It is really long, and full of history.  I loved the first two thirds of the book better than the last, but it was beautifully written, and based on a true story.  So glad I read it, and can't wait to read her other books.

"The Bright Forever" by Lee Martin.  A story of a lost girl, and lost souls. Definitely worth more than the 50 cents I paid for it at a yard sale.  I really enjoyed the writing, and it made me think that perhaps I could write a book someday.  For now just trying to keep up with my blog diary is enough...

"My Name is Memory" by Ann Brashares (she of the "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" fame).  I read this while I was on vacation at Heather's house, and sick in bed with food poisoning.  I loved the premise, hated the ending.  Maybe my circumstances colored my opinion...

"The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes" is my current read, given to me by Tracy as part of my birthday bag o gifts.  I look forward to getting to it every night.

Next up:  "Those Who Save Us" by Jenna Blum.  Heather picked it up for me, it looks so interesting.

If only there were more hours in a day to spend reading, guilt free.  Like when I was ten, and dropped off at the library for my favorite part of the summer.

1 comment:

  1. I am positive that you and I are twins. Or at least soul sisters/cousins. Or at least kindred spirits. I can identify with this post So well. I love the smell of books too and I still recall the huge painting of James & the Giant Peach on the library when I was a kid. Now it is a ReMax which kills me because I loved that library with all the separate rooms. So much character. I adored Beezus & Romona and read every single Judy Blume book. When I enter a bookstore, my skin begins to prickle with excitement. Seriously. I really enjoyed your book ideas above. Someone else has also recommended The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo to me so I better check it out. I looovvved this post!


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