Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Books I Read...and Didn't

One of the best things to look forward to when visiting Jane is reading.  She and I like a lot of the same kinds of books.  There are books to explore at both the house in Sydney and several bookcases in the house at Avoca Beach, so it's complete heaven there as well. 

I read a lot on this trip, possibly more than ever before.  I took some notes as I read *these* books as well and may find I have to blog about them.

Fabric Leftovers, by D'Arcy Jean Milne (I've bought this finally!)

Sew Many Bags, by Sally Southern

*Lessons in Letting Go:  Confessions of a Hoarder, by Corinne Grant

*The American Housewife, by Harriet Beecher Stowe (I took the ebook on my computer)

Speed Cleaning:  A spotless house in just 15 minutes a day, by Shannon Lush and Jennifer Fleming  (Jane mentioned that she thought it was nice to at least know the theory...I agree).

*The Brain that Changes Itself, by Norman Doidge

*The Secret Life of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd  (I've read it before, but knew I'd enjoy it again)

The Duchess of Acquitaine:  A novel of Eleanor, by Margaret Ball  (I'm now reading The Seven Ages of Paris, and fitting together puzzle pieces from it into what I know about English history; such fun!)

*The Elegance of the Hedgehog, by Muriel Barbary

Caleb's Crossing, by Geraldine Brooks (I grab anything she's written.)

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, by Paul Torday (who happens to live in Northumberland, where there would be pretty good salmon fishing.)

Madonna, Unauthorized, by Christopher P. Anderson

Books I Didn't Read - but probably would have if I'd had the time: 

Chocolat, by Joanne Harris (Pretty sure I've seen the film and/or read the book before.  However, I've since bought her book Blackberry Wine at the local book fair and it's completely wonderful). 

Possession, by A.S. Byatt (having loved the film, I figured I knew the plot of the story, more or less)

The Thirteenth Tale, by Diane Setterfield

How to Be Idle, by Tom Hodgkinson (I figure I'm pretty champion at this already, but I'm open to learning new skills in this area.) 

*Theory of the Leisure Class by Thorstein Veblen  (This was also on my computer.  It is a fascinating, if challenging read and I've not got very far.  Having written in a different century, Veblen  uses words to mean different things than I usually understand them to mean, but I'm determined I will go back and finish this.  It explains so much about how everyday things are, between the classes - and between the sexes, but is shocking at the same time.)

Two books I saw at the airport bookstore, but didn't choose to buy, were The Winter Palace:  A novel of Catherine the Great by Eva Stachniak and The Captain's Daughter by Leah Fleming.  In looking these up I wasn't sure which Captain's Daughter I wanted.  Fleming's book is about the Titanic, but there is a free ebook by the same title by Alexander Pushkin, would could be more interesting to read alongside the novel about Catherine the Great.  Sort of like visiting the Palace at Holyrood House, home of Mary Queen of Scots, on the same day as the home of John Knox.

Bill did a bit of reading as well, but not nearly as much as I.  He shared some bits from a book of silly sayings which I will now pass on:

"A fairy tale is something that never happened a long time ago."


"The end of the world would mark a turning point in everyone's life."


Anonymous said... did read a lot. Reading used to be my passion...I still love it but don't do it nearly as much as I used to. I miss it. If I could just keep the computer off more, I might find the joy again. :)

Anonymous said...

Oh you really are a bookworm, I find it so hard to concentrate these days, I'm reading less and less,I think the internet is rewiring my brain.

Oh I and I only wear my own engagement ring about 6 times a year, I don't like rings, this one will be no different - special occasions only - wasted on me really.

Anonymous said...

I'm curious about several of the books you mention that you had read. On your to be read list, I highly recommend Possession. It is intelligent and engrossing. Hope you manage to slog through the Veblen--I'll have to retire before I have the chance to read it.

Beryl said...

Thanks to your recommendation, I'm still working through the Kerry Greenwood books. What makes you add a book to your reading list?

LR @ Magnificent or Egregious said...

Great recommendations - esp the Speed Cleaning book and Chocolat. Will have to order those from the library.

Shelley said...

LR - I read just about like I breathe... I too find that screen time robs me of other pleasures and so I have been trying to find ways to limit this so it doesn't take over the rest of my life!

Tabitha - Gosh, if you only wear jewelry on special occasions you cost per wear must be enormous! I wear rings every day and rotate through them regularly. Mind, most of mine are not truly spectacular except for my Aunt Rita's and they don't really suit me, having small hands. Seriously, you are very likely right that the internet is rewiring your brain - it is affecting all of us that way.

Terri - I will try to pick up the book Possession the next time I run across it. Still have Veblen on my computer, so haven't given up yet!

Beryl - So pleased you are enjoying Kerry Greenwood. Bill is thinking of looking into another series she's written under a pseudonym, set in modern Melbourne. As to why I put a book on my list? That's a very interesting question to which I'll have to give further consideration!

LR - Mind the Speed Clean book did seem to pertain especially to Australia in some ways - they have a terrible time with spiders building webs all over everything over night. Still, it was an interesting idea, 15 minutes a day...