Thursday, June 30, 2016

June Titles (2016)

I can't remember where this photo is from, but it's not mine.

I did not get a ton of books read this month. June for me was like December is for everyone else....bonkers! I read (but didn't finish) a very slow-going classic, and then tried to play catch up with book candy the rest of the month. I read a bit of books here and there that I haven't finished for one reason or another, but to be honest I wasn't excited about them. We did, however, read a lot of great books via audio with the kids!

*The Progeny by Tosca Lee - This was what I call a "candy book". It's just total fun, easy, and a thriller or page-turner (both, in this case). I love Lee's historical fiction books that generally lead toward biblical history, and this was her first of hers that is not in that category. This story was about a girl who is Progeny--a long line of nobility that has strong powers--that come from a Hungarian noblewoman named Elizabeth Bathory. The graphic parts of this book are very light (they don't go into much detail) and the historicity that is in the book are more about old languages; numerals, underground caverns, and Franciscan monks. It was fun!

*The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje - This book is a glittering, poetic book about four very different people, intersecting in WWII, and their story of survival, love, and loss. It was a book club book and although I probably never would have picked this book up because Elaine hated the movie, I'm glad I stayed the course. It took me an incredibly long time to read this (think 30 pages per hour) because the detail is thick, the time sequences sketchy, and the story bizarre at times. If you're looking for a beach read, skip this one, this is a savor book, perhaps best read over a long break, like Christmas or a rainy Spring break.

*Stiff by Mary Roach - I have been "reading" this book for months and have kept stalling when I had a book club book to finish, got interested in something else, or just wanted something lighter. Ahem. This book really is about what happens after you die. Like, the scientific, the grotesque, the fascinating, and the literal. Mary Roach is one of the funniest nonfiction writers because even she can make dark jokes about a very morbid subject. It's laugh out loud funny at times but not for the squeamish. If you've ever wondered the history of the guillotine, how med students practice for surgery in med school, and have heard a weird rumor that a head transplant can actually be done, this book is for you. Others, just watch the surgery channel and see if you can hack it (pun intended). If not? Let this one lie (sorry! last one).

Read Aloud/ Listened to with kids:

*Little Town on the Prairie by Laura Ingalls Wilder - We listened to this story on audio and what a relief it has been not to read aloud these very detailed stories of Laura and her very detailed life! I love the stories, but after about five or six of these aloud, I'm fully ready to give the voice to another person who has enthusiasm in their voice (thanks Cherry Jones!). This story is about sending Mary to the college of the blind, all that happens in the town after the long winter, and Laura's restlessness and angst as she gets older-too old to play, but too young to be an adult.

*These Happy Golden Years by Laura Ingalls Wilder - This is another audio we listened to and the second last in the series. I can't believe we'll finish them in early summer. It feels like a major accomplishment! My kids really enjoyed this story, as Laura starts teaching, Almanzo and his beautiful horses come pick her up every Friday night, and the rest...well, you'll just have to read it!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Just to let you know - I always bake my bread with buttermilk and water. Since i keep it at the right, cold temperature, I use it up to 14 days after 'best before'. Shake it well, taste it - and use it, if it's still smells/tastes good. Try baking an Irish soda bread. If you and your kids don't drink it, you could make warm 'buttermilk soup' (a direct Danish translation!). I'm sure, your kids will like it, especially if you serve it with some raisins in. (You were asking on another blog if you could use it after 'best before'!)
A Danish baker