Back to school they went. Adjusting schedules, alarm clocks, and expectations. Everything just starting to settle into place, when the teachers decided to... STRIKE.
My two oldest girls at loose ends for most of last week. Today, the administration decided to schedule a full day of alternate education enabled by substitute teachers and community volunteers. I can't wait to hear how it went. My oldest made sure to bring a couple of interesting books. Can you ever be bored if you have a good book?
I've been meaning to share with you some of the books I've read this summer. Our library is my usual go-to source for books, and I also buy the occasional book if I can't wait to read it. As part of the summer reading club at the library, they were handing out 'advance reading copies' of yet to be published books. So fun, and much easier to take on vacation or the boat.
Loved the Orchardist, by Amanda Coplin. Lyrical historical fiction set in a rural stretch of the Pacific Northwest about a gentle, solitary homesteader who tends apricots, apples, plums, and finds his life upended by two sad runaway girls.
Edith Wharton's influence is still alive and kicking as evidenced by a number of recent books inspired by her writing. Both The Age of Desire, by Jennie Fields, and The Innocents, by Francesca Segal are directly related to Edith. Purporting that she fell madly in love with the young journalist, Morton Fullerton, The Age of Desire details 'a vivid journey through Wharton's early Gilded Age world: Paris with its glamourous literary salons and dark secret cafes, the Wharton's elegant house in Lenox, Massachusetts, and Henry Jame's manse in Rye, England.'
While Francesca Segal's debut novel, The Innocents, is more Age of Innocence, set in a small Jewish suburb northwest of London. The narrator finds himself torn between security and exhilaration, tradition and independence. 'What might he be missing by staying close to home?'
Perfect for summer reading: The Shoemaker's Wife, by Adriana Trigiani, The Book of Summer, by Emylia Hall, and The Provence Cure for the Brokenhearted, by Bridget Asher.
Gathering a ton of positive word of mouth, The Light Between Oceans, by M. L. Steadman lives up to the hype. Married lighthouse keepers on a remote island in Australia find a boat washed ashore with a baby accompanied by a dead man. Deciding to keep 'the gift from God' causes all kinds of unintended consequences. I'm unable to get it out of my mind. Tigers in Red Weather, by Liza Klaussmann isn't in the same category but is an enjoyable 'light- historical fiction' read.
Continuing in the historical fiction vein, Shadow of Night, The Orphan Master, and The Solitary House. All are pretty solid reads.
More in the thriller category, Justin Cronin knocks it out of the park with The Twelve, his follow-up to the very scary The Passage. Previously mentioned, here. Also enjoyed the psychological thriller Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn. Some plot developments were more than a little convenient/ predictable, but that's pretty hard to avoid.
What's the last good book you read?