SHOP PRODUCTS
Houzz Logo Print
rosefolly_gw

Here come the May flowers, and lots of books to read this month

rosefolly
10 years ago

I interrupted Steve Jobs to read my April book club book, Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman. I found it to be a pleasant but lightweight story about a young girl with a dreadful childhood emerging into a more fortunate environment. Some of the members of our group found it to be sheer fluff, but I think there is lots of room for pleasant, undemanding stories on our reading lists. I was happy to get back to the biography of the innovator of our current digital world, but did not mind the interlude.

As for flowers, I am currently reveling in a wonderful spring flush of roses. I'm almost sorry it is here, because I anticipate the passing. Given that I also tend to start missing people who go on trips before they actually leave, you know it is my own character flaw at work!

Rosefolly

Comments (60)

  • netla
    10 years ago

    Woodnymph, in that case you might be interested to know that there are two more books: Narrow Dog to Indian River, featuring their boating adventures in the US (they shipped the boat over that time around), and Narrow Dog to Wigan Pier, about their adventures on the English canals.

    The Indian River book was how I found out about them - it was featured on a travel program I sometimes listen to on the BBC.

  • woodnymph2_gw
    10 years ago

    Thanks, Netla. I'll look for the other books.

  • Related Discussions

    What are you reading? (Garden books & others)

    Q

    Comments (74)
    In case anyone missed the PBS special The Botany of Desire which premiered Wednesday, October 28, 2009, you can still watch the entire program online. It's incredible. Book turned documentary. BOTANY OF DESIRE is a documentary which tells the utterly original story of everyday plants and the way they have domesticated humankind. An interpretation of the relationship between plants and people. This two-hour documentary explores plant evolution and takes viewers from the potato fields of Peru and Idaho, the apple forests of Kazakhstan, and the tulip markets of Amsterdam. View online in it's entirety: here This is another related program by the same presenter on LINK TV (a cable access channel) which is timely: Deep Agriculture Traditional methods of agriculture in most developed nations have long ignored environmental concerns. Factors such as soil erosion, water shortage and the impact of chemicals on bio-systems have been overlooked in favour of massive crop yields and cheaper food. But what impact does this have on our health and our environment? View online in it's entirety: here __________________________ Sit down with a cup of tea or coffee and witness the evolution of an Organic Kitchen Garden.
    ...See More

    Ever go back and read books that you read

    Q

    Comments (36)
    Oh, yes, I re-read all the time. The ones I re-read the most are Jane Austen's novels, the "Outlander" series by Diana Gabaldon, "Anna Karenina" by Leo Tolstoy (one of my favorite books ever), and "Far From the Madding Crowd" by Thomas Hardy. I've re-read "To Kill a Mockingbird," too, but only 3-4 times.:)
    ...See More

    June, a Month of Leaves and Roses and Reading

    Q

    Comments (79)
    Been working my way through a pile of books that I just have to get back to their rightful owner, plus one of them would make good fodder for my monthly book review column that I do for a local rag. The Perfect Storm is a YA epistolary novel based on the real-life Galveston hurricane that happened in September 1900. This was actually a really good read, and in fact, the descriptions of the "I was there" POV of the lashing of the rain and the winds and the utter destruction that was the result was really powerful, as when I put down the book to let the cat out, I opened the door fully expecting it to be rainy and windy, instead of 100 degrees that it was. (Sigh. This might also have been linked with the fact that we haven't had any measurable rain in the area since last October. Wishful thinking.) The other book was called Breathing, In Dust by Tim Z. Hernandez, which is really a series of short stories (more vignettes, really) of life in a poor urban Hispanic neighborhood of LA. Each story/vignette can stand on its own, but when read as a group, you can see threads of various stories and characters throughout the book. Although I didn't enter the book with very high expectations, it was still a good book and it's likely that the author made it pretty autobiographical. Like I said, I enjoyed it but it did seem rather as though it was a thesis or dissertation from a graduate writing program. So, as a complete change of pace (and being heavy with guilt from having too many books on the real-life TBR pile), I pulled out a Ruth Rendell book of short stories which I have had in my possession for absolutely ages. Titled Piranha to Scurfy, it is a really good collection of short stories that cover a wide range of topics. Not a murder in them (so far), but more of the unexpected twisty tales of Saki or perhaps The Twilight Zone... Thoroughly enjoying this one. And in the spirit of cleaning up the TBR pile, I pulled out the NF Stuff:Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things by Randy O. Frost and gail Steketee. Starting off with famous Collyer brothers in NYC, the book has started really well, and I am looking forward to reading it with gratitude that I am not a hoarder (nor is any of my family). I think it would be tough to handle. So - that's my weekend ahead of me. Reading, reading, reading. (I hope. I do have the MIL in town, so there may not quite as much time reading as I hope...)
    ...See More

    OT: DB may move to Toronto for six months (Dec 2016-May2017)

    Q

    Comments (36)
    Thanks for all the help and suggestions, but as it turned out, Sony decided not to send anyone to Toronto and is going to let the staff in Toronto work it out on their own without a director. I guess that is one way for them to save money. So I will wait for warmer weather before I visit Toronto, and Kevin will not be there, unless he goes with me. Last week a friend asked me to go to Brazil with him some time next year after April. He has to settle an estate there, and he knew that I could take the time off. We'll see if that materializes. I would like to visit Brazil, but I've been afraid to go because I do not speak Portuguese, but my friend does, and that would make me feel more comfortable. He will be mainly going to Rio de Janeiro, but would be making side trips to Petrópolis and other places.
    ...See More
  • veer
    10 years ago

    Mary/woodnymph I have seen the 'Narrow Dog ....' book advertised and had wondered about buying it for my brother who, a few years ago bought a large/long canal boat in Rotterdam and transported it back over the English Channel and then by 'low loader' to his boat yard on the Avon at Stratford where he has been doing it up. He wants eventually to take it back to the European waterways . . . unless something more interesting takes his fancy. ;-)
    And yes, we did 'do' a narrow boat trip a while ago. A very quiet and slow paced means of transport.

  • dedtired
    10 years ago

    I just finished Paris: A Love Story by the journalist Kati Marton. I expected it to be more about her experiences living in Paris than her autobiography. Frankly, I did not like her so much, and the book was not so engaging. I also read Left Neglected by Lisa Genova, another disappointment. It is about two women living on Nantucket, each struggling with a life crisis. One is dealing with the death of an autistic son as well as the end of her marriage and the other woman is dealing with a philandering husband. Their lives cross in an odd (ridicuoous to me) way. Can't recommend.

    Now I am reading The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton (not Kati Marton!) and I am enjoying it thoroughly.

    Prior to these I read The Round House by Barbara Ehrlich. I learned a lot about Native American tribal laws and living on a reservation, but I had a hard time keeping track of all the characters.

  • lemonhead101
    10 years ago

    And I think Rosefolly (and others) might be interested in this:

    I found a book called Fashion: The Definitive History of Costume and Style (published by the wonderful DK folk and the Smithsonian team) which covers "more than 3,000 years of ... trends... in the world of clothing."

    This is more along the lines of what I had thought I was getting with that Tim Gunn book, except this one is brilliant. Exceptional detail (most of the time), great photos and illustrations, and in-depth without being too obsessive.

    I'm not a fashion plate, by any means, but I am enjoying this huge book. (It's big and heavy so unless you have muscles like Atlas and balance like Spiderman, it would tough to read on a machine at the gym. Just in case you were thinking that...)

    :-)

    Here is a link that might be useful: Fashion book link to Goodreads

  • carolyn_ky
    10 years ago

    No, Mary, the Susan Hill book is not fiction. It is the story of how she went searching in her house full of books for something to read and found so many books that she had not read that she determined to read only what she had for a year.

    She has books all over her house and shelved by whim (and has nothing good to say about those of us who keep them alphabetically, much less by color). It is a short book with good information on her preferred authors and gives a list at the end of forty books that she would choose to keep if they were the only ones she could ever have to read.

    I think it would be enjoyable for anyone who likes to read.

  • timallan
    10 years ago

    Still struggling with Suite Francaise. It is an excellent book, but for some reason I am really struggling with it. Making better progress with The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters. I have never read one of her books before, but so far I am really enjoying this one.

  • veer
    10 years ago

    I recently ploughed through The Way of all Flesh by Samuel Butler as part of my 'read more of the classics' attempt.
    Based on Butler's own life it is not an easy book to enjoy. It takes several chapters before we meet the 'hero' Ernest Pontifex, a young man with little ambition or ability who's father, a clergyman, bullies him into entering the Church, for which he has no vocation.
    Great parts are given over to the fashionable views/thoughts of the C of E during the mid nineteenth century in which I have little understanding or interest and the only lighter moments are those where Butler describes the dreadful snob Mrs Pontifex day-dreaming that her husband becomes Archbishop of Canterbury or her daughter marries a Duke. Ernest is never developed into an interesting or able character and it all became rather too boring . . . but at least I reached the end!
    Not at all in the same class as the 'Barchester' novels of Anthony Trollope

  • netla
    10 years ago

    I finished Narrow Dog to Carcasonne and enjoyed it despite the sometimes strange style of writing. The Darlingtons remind me a bit of my parents, with their love of travelling and adventure, although my folks choice of vehicle is a camper rather than a boat.

    I then picked up Climbing the Mango Trees by Madhur Jaffrey, which I had set aside several months ago, and finished it in an afternoon. It's an interesting look at her childhood and teenage years, growing up in a middle-class Hindu family in northern India. I really shouldn't have read it, since I am now fighting an urge to book a flight to India just to try all the delicious foods she writes of. Since I am saving up money for something else I'll just have to be content with trying to cook it myself, using the recipes she provides at the end of the book.

  • carolyn_ky
    10 years ago

    I've started A Week in Winter, the last book by Maeve Binchy, and am liking it very much.

    Last night, I downloaded the five books on Susan Hill's top forty list to keep forever that are available to my Sony Reader and cost $.99 or are free. I am going on vacation in a couple of weeks, and last year I ran out of books. I don't believe that will be the case this year since one of these is Crime and Punishment. Sony doesn't have anywhere near as many books available as the Kindle or the Nook. (Ms. Hill also derides electronic readers.)

    I'm also taking Edward Rutherford's new book, Paris, to have on the plane since they make you turn off all devices for take off and landing, which, when you are twiddling your thumbs, seem to take a very long time.

  • annpan
    10 years ago

    Carolyn, Vee put me on to that last Binchy book. I thought I had read all her short stories then found an anthology which had some that I hadn't read.
    I was puzzled by a name change in one of her stories about a woman who wants to take her father to Paris. Not only was her name changed but the title was different too!
    I hope there are a few more short stories which I haven't read and could come across. Also another film being made sometime.(Or as my Irish landlady used to say"fillum"!)

  • woodnymph2_gw
    10 years ago

    I've almost finished "Narrow Dog to Carcassone" and am loving every bit of it, now that I've got used to the author's "slangy" style. I'll look for the other T. Darlington books, for sure.

    Netla, like you, I adore Indian cuisine. Are there then no Indian restaurants where you live? They are quite popular here in the US, in cities, and are usually family-operated.

  • netla
    10 years ago

    Woodnymph, sure, there are a few Indian restaurants here (I can think of 5 off the top of my head), a couple of them quite good and none bad, but the menus are limited to the usual Mughal and tandoori dishes, with some Punjabi thrown in. The dishes Jaffrey writes about in her book are mostly Delhi cuisine, the kind you'll only find in Indian homes and tiny family restaurants hidden in the back streets of Delhi. Besides, although I love Indian food and can cook it quite well (and authentically), it still tastes different when eaten in India because you're getting the whole experience, not just the flavour and scent of the food, but the smells, sounds and sights of India. It's like adding an extra spice to the mix.

  • rouan
    10 years ago

    Carolyn (and Siobhan for the original post), thanks for reminding me about the Susan Hill book. I looked for it in my library system after Siobhan recommended it but none of the libraries owned it so I let it go for a while. After your post reminded me of it again, I checked the library system catalog and once again drew a blank so I went to my local library and ordered it through inter library loan.

    I've been on a re-reading kick lately, some Ngaio Marsh mysteries as well as a couple of Margery Allingham's books, but today I read The House at the end of Hope Street by Menna van Praag. I don't usually like stories told in present tense but this managed to get (and keep) my attention for the whole story, even when I was fairly sure I'd figured out the ending about 2/3rds of the way through.

    Annpan, I'm glad you enjoyed Flipped, that I mentioned in the April thread. I's always fun to find new books to read that one one hear recommends. :)

  • rosefolly
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    After returning 3 really awful contemporary light novels to the library half read, I am now settled happily into the most recent Flavia de Luce novel, Speaking from Among the Bones. Flavia never disappoints.

    I finished Steve Jobs and passed it along to my husband, who is about halfway through it. Very well written portrait of a brilliant, driven, and thoroughly dis-likable man; much like, say, Henry Ford or Thomas Edison, both of whom he is compared to in the book. I would not have survived working for him. I recommend it highly.

    Rosefolly

  • merryworld
    10 years ago

    Kathy_t, I've finished "The Tiger's Wife" and I think it will spur a good book club discussion. I really enjoyed all the different stories of people's unusual lives, but for me they didn't really gel in the end into a coherent whole. Hopefully, a discussion will give me a little more clarity.

  • timallan
    10 years ago

    I finished The Little Stranger this afternoon. I absolutely loved it. Though May is normally a bit early in the year for me to read a "haunted house" book, the weather this weekend has been cold and windy. Absolutely perfect conditions for reading about the weird noises and sinister shadows of a tumbledown English mansion. I read a big chunk of the book last night curled up in bed with two of my cats, while outside the wind groaned and my house creaked.

  • netla
    10 years ago

    I've just finished The Devil: A Biography by Peter Stanford. It's an informative and enjoyable history of the concept of the Devil, not just in Christianity, but also in Islam, Judaism and other religions, although the Christian focus is the strongest. I think I would like to read something about his opposite number now.
    I would prefer something that takes a theoretical approach - i.e. not a "God exists, here is the proof" kind of thing and have found two likely books in the library. If you have read either, could you please tell me if you would recommend it? They are:
    A history of God : from Abraham to the present: the 4000-year quest for God by Karen Armstrong, and
    God : a biography by Jack Miles.

  • woodnymph2_gw
    10 years ago

    I finished "Narrow Dog to Carcasonne" and hated to see it end. Now, I've ordered "Narrow Dog to Indian River", which takes place in parts of the Tidewater area on the East Coast that I'm quite familiar with.

    I noted that today Dan Brown's latest fictional novel is forthcoming: "Inferno." (Set in Florence). There was a TV interview with Brown this morning and a tour of his unique house in New England, where he has installed secret passageways, hidden chambers, and the like.

  • lemonhead101
    10 years ago

    I was struck with how much Wood defended The Great Gatsby, and thinking about just how many years it had been since I had last read it, I picked it up from the library and have immersed myself in it.

    Wood - thank you for getting me to read GG again. It's a very different reading experience this time around (no tests, no essays) and I am loving it. Fitzgerald is a great writer and has wonderful turn of phrases. Plus I had no memory of how rich the narrative prose was. I *love* it and now I may have to reconsider my rather flippant remark about the movie being better than the book. I'm still going to see the movie (once I'm done with the book), so I'll let you know... Thanks for the push, Wood!

    In the meantime, I'm also reading a NF called The Social Animal by NYT reporter David Brooks. It's a sociological type of book and is riveting. It's not an easy read, but it's worth fighting for. :-)

    And I ended up weighing that Fashion coffee table book that I was reading from the library - TEN pounds of photos and words. It's probably the heaviest book I've ever read.

    :-)

  • woodnymph2_gw
    10 years ago

    Liz, you are welcome! :-) My favorite part is toward the end, when Fitzgerald writes of the "green light" and evokes the history of the area.

    Today, I have in hand "Narrow Dog to Indian River" and can't wait to get started on it.

    Dan Brown is not a good writer by any stretch of the imagination, but out of curiosity, I have put my name down for his newest, "Inferno." (Maybe partly because I love Florence so much).

  • frances_md
    10 years ago

    Yesterday I found Inferno in the library where I was doing a Master Gardener plant clinic. I wasn't looking for it and couldn't believe it was just sitting there on the shelf. It has received pretty good reviews and, since unlike many of you I liked his other books, I'm looking forward to getting started on it -- right now!

  • junek-2009
    10 years ago

    I am enjoying a delightful reread of The Tortoise Shell by Fanny Frewen.

  • ladyrose65
    10 years ago

    I am going to make a goal of reading "War and Peace". I started it several years ago, it did not catch my interest. However, I could not put 'Anna Karenina" down.

    I am taking book recommendations for in btw reading. I like drama, dysfunctional family stuff, or social issues books. (No vampires, wolves, or sci-fi).

    Hollah back!

  • veer
    10 years ago

    Quite by chance I've been on an Elizabeth Jane Howard extravaganza. BBC radio have been doing a series of plays based on her Cazalet novels and I had ordered her autobiography Slip Stream from the library. This arrived just before our recent brief visit to the Cotswolds so I took it to read. While there I found a copy of her later book Love All in the cottage which we had rented. So I was listening to one novel, reading another and carrying on with her autob.
    She certainly has led a full life, often marred by terribly judgement as far as men are concerned, much of which comes out in the Cazalet's. After a quiet well-heeled upbringing spoilt by her Father's sexual behaviour towards her she made a disastrous too young marriage to much older famous Peter Scott (son of Capt. Scott) and birth of a daughter she rejected. Very very many 'affairs' followed, within months to Scott's younger brother, then a host of literary celebs . . . C Day Lewis, critic Ken Tynan, Laurie Lee, Arthur Koestler, marriage and divorce to Kingsley Amis . . .the list goes on. Many of these men were total controlling sh*ts who just used her for housework/cooking/sex . . . often (apparently) with the knowledge of their wives. It seems not uncommon for her to have met a man at a party for him to suggest she become his mistress . . . and they had barely shaken hands!
    But it is a well-written and apparently honest work
    The novel Love All follows a group of middle class folk living in reduced circumstances and it dodges between their various stories which get a bit confusing and, as with E J H's life the young women are often proposed to by men who have known them only a few days. Many of the settings/houses/gardens are almost identical to those described in Slip Stream. I frequently thought I was experiencing deja vu.


  • carolyn_ky
    10 years ago

    Ladyrose, if you want dysfunctional and haven't read it, try We Were the Mulvaneys by Joyce Carol Oates. I don't like dysfunction and haven't read anything by her since that one.

    Last week I read the fourth and last published Tracker mystery by Jeri Westerson and In for a Penny by Kathryn R. Wall. It the first of a series set in Hilton Head, SC. I picked one up at random a few weeks ago and liked it, so I guess I'm off and running with yet another mystery series.

  • J C
    10 years ago

    I finally got around to unpacking the very last of the boxes I had stashed under the eaves and was delighted to find Derek Tangye's entire magnun opus. I read all of his Minack tales a few years back when they were briefly back in print and have often thought of them, but they are OOP now and I thought I had given them away in an ill-advised book culling. They are just as wonderful the second time around, especially since I have made my own leap into a simpler life in a rural area after years of unhappiness in various big cities. I have started with his tribute to his wife Jean, which I think is his best. He manages to make her very human, not the cardboard cutout of perfection that often emerges from these types of books. Although she does sound like the very best person, someone I would be proud and awed to know. Just as I started this book, a visit to the used bookstore yielded an old hardback A Cat in the Window with a intact dust jacket bearing a color photo of the cat that started it all, Monty. As I stood in the bookstore, I turned to the last page, knowing that it had a tremendously moving and delicate description of Monty's natural death after a long, full life. Luckily there was no one to witness me daubing at my eyes for quite some minutes. Of course I purchased the book for the whopping sum of $1.

    Funny how these books, written some decades ago in a very different world, touch me so. How odd to think that animals that live for only a few years can spring off the pages large as life. And people who have been gone for decades can seem as real as if I had just had lunch with them.

  • junek-2009
    10 years ago

    Loving "A Fine Balance" by Rohinton Mistry.

  • netla
    10 years ago

    I've just finished rereading The Talisman by Sir Walter Scott. It's one of his minor historical novels that I fell in love with as a teenager and reread every few years. Next I had intended to reread (for the first time in English) Ivanhoe, but when browsing the list of classics on my Kindle my eye fell on another title and I started reading The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë instead. Liking it so far.

    I have a notion to read all the Brontë novels, even the dreaded Wuthering Heights, which I detested when I first read it. I think I might like it better now, as I know what I'll be getting myself into. If I still don't like it, rereading Jane Eyre will certainly cleanse my reading palate. The plan is to read a couple of the novels I haven't read before before tackling WH and to end with JE.

  • annpan
    10 years ago

    Siobhan, Have you read any of Doreen Tovey's books about cats? I took one in to my husband who was recuperating from an operation in hospital and he told me that he nearly split his stitches laughing so much at their antics!

  • lemonhead101
    10 years ago

    I've picked up "A Passage to India" (Forster 1924) and am delirious with joy when I'm reading it. It's such a great book that I am rather sad that I haven't read it before. But never too late. I am finding that I really enjoy Forster's work.

    Don't get why Passage is not on Project Gutenberg though when his other works are. It must be a copyright deal, I think or perhaps it's not been published long enough yet...

    Also reading "The Good Soldier" by Ford Madox Ford, but it's not that great yet. We'll see. I ended up reading "The Great Gatsby" twice as it was soo good..... Thanks, Wood. I would have missed that experience if not for you.

  • veer
    10 years ago

    Liz, if you get to enjoy The Good Soldier look out for the DVD of the 2012 BBC series Parade's End by Ford Maddox Ford. 1914 Honourable soldier marries a perfectly beautiful b**ch. A bit difficult to follow at first but great acting and cast.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Parade's End

  • woodnymph2_gw
    10 years ago

    I'm regaling myself with "Narrow Dog to Indian River", being thoroughly entertained. This has to be the best travel series I've ever found, bar none. Move over Tim Parks and Peter Mayle! Terry Darlington has you beat by a mile....

    As I used to live in the part of the East Coast the author traveled through, I follow on my maps his journey.

  • J C
    10 years ago

    I am thoroughly enjoying Laurie Lee's As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning. In 1934, at the age of 19 he left home, walked to London and then traveled to Spain, penniless and on foot. The story is compelling, the writing superb. Beautifully illustrated. What is not to like? (Laurie Lee is famous for Cider with Rosie.)

    One thing that makes this book stand out for me is that Lee was truly poor and innocent - unlike many other travelogues of this type, where the traveler is well-educated and the recipient of a great deal of help from wealthy friends and family, despite their own assertions of 'poverty.' I love books that truly capture a certain time and place, and this book certainly does that.

  • veer
    10 years ago

    I must thank Liz/lemonhead for recommending The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne by Brian Moore. An excellent, though not a happy read that captures both the sad, empty life of a middle-aged spinster clinging on to respectability through 'genteel poverty' and her all-consuming devotion to the Catholic Church. Set in always wet, cold and dour 1950's Belfast we meet the narrow-minded lodgers of the boarding house (no references required) to which Miss Hearne has moved, enlivened by a returnee from the US with his 'tall stories' of money and opportunities. We learn of her empty days and her bitter reflections on Life and her inability to 'read' the meanings of others.
    Moore also gives us his views on Belfast as seen through Catholic eyes (well before the Troubles broke out). Their dislike of Presbyterians who they see as no better than Hitler. The importance of 'keeping up appearances' so non-Catholics wont see RC faults. He well describes the dominance of the Church and the power of the priesthood on the lives of the parishioners. The main conversation round the breakfast table is which Mass each person will be attending, have they been to Confession, what is the new priest like? Poor Miss Hearne learns to her befuddled cost that Faith is difficult to maintain when your fragile world collapses round you.
    I read that Moore had grown up in Belfast, son of a successful doctor, but left the country to join a WWII Army medical unit in defiance of his Father, a Nazi supporter. He later emigrated to Canada where he became a newspaper man and later a writer.
    A film was made in the 1980's starring Maggie Smith but was set in Dublin so perhaps many subtle nuances of the original story may be lost.
    Well worth reading, thank you Liz.

  • woodnymph2_gw
    10 years ago

    Laurie Lee is one of my favorite authors. Another fan here of "As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning."

  • rouan
    10 years ago

    I have just finished Susan Hill's Howard's End is on the Landing. I found it to be very interesting and am glad Siobhan and Carolyn recommended it.

  • veer
    10 years ago

    re Laurie Lee Cider With Rosie As I Walked Out . .. Although they have many lyrical passages (described by Elizabeth Jane Howard quoting poet C Day Lewis as 'purple prose'), some of what he writes owes more to his imagination than to hard fact. Even childhood events in his Cotswold village have been questioned by those who lived there at the time. And I doubt the part of his life when he arrives in Spain hoping to fight in the Civil War, and is dropped into a hole and left for several days. Is that how they really treated their supporters?
    Btw E J Howard says LL was the best of all her many lovers.

  • kathy_t
    10 years ago

    I just finished reading The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown. ItâÂÂs about three single adult daughters who for various reasons converge on their parentsâ home for prolonged stays. Their father being a professor specializing in Shakespeare, the daughters are named Rosalind, Bianca, and Cordelia. The family members often speak to one another in Shakespeare quotes. Perhaps it would appeal to a Shakespeare enthusiast, but I did not find it very compelling reading.

  • J C
    10 years ago

    I don't know if this applied to Laurie Lee, but it is my understanding that once upon a time a book like this would be expected to be merely based on fact, perhaps 70% 'true' and it was generally understood that the author was telling a story. Very unlike today, where fact checkers are everywhere and if one publishes a memoir, it had better be factual or the author will find him or herself in disgrace.

    Lee does make it obvious that he loves women! ;)

  • maxmom96
    10 years ago

    Kathy t; I didn't much care for Weird Sisters, either.

    I'm presently reading Blue Highways, A Journey into America, by William Least Heat-Moon. As the title implies, it is his journey on the 'blue' highways shown on maps, i.e., secondary roads, and his encounters with the people along the way, and adding some historical notes also.

    I am only a third of the way through, but it is interesting to read of people's views on society over thirty years ago, and wonder (and hope, in some cases) that they may have changed.

  • kathy_t
    10 years ago

    Maxmom - Oddly, I have never read Blue Highways, although I live in the town where Bill Trogdon taught at our local university, then returned from his blue highways journey as William Least Heat-Moon. I've always meant to read it.

  • netla
    10 years ago

    Maxmom and Kathy, I loved Blue Highways. The guy writes well and it was an interesting journey. It would be interesting to see an account of the same journey if it were made today, to see what has changed and what hasn't.

  • lemonhead101
    10 years ago

    I really enjoyed "Cider with Rosie" by Lee, and have "Midsummer..." lined up in the TBR pile. (However, I think we all know how that works out sometimes!)

    I've been lurking a bit. Sorry - I will make more of an effort to join in. I've been reading though. Just finished a super-great read of E. M. Forster's "A Passage to India" which I adored, and then finished up Ford Madox Ford's "The Good Soldier" which was rather bleak, but good once I got into it.

    ILL just came up with another Thirkell... Lovely read, I hope, and then the NF is "The Hidden Life of Dogs" by Elizabeth Marshall Thomas. It might give some more insight into our very exuberant and enthusiastic Aussie. :-)

  • kathy_t
    10 years ago

    Netla - I heard that someone recently took the Blue Highways journey and photographed places mentioned in the book. They, in turn, published a photography book named Blue Highways Revisited. I should have said "If memory serves..." because I'm not sure I have my facts exactly correct, but I believe that's what I heard - and I think it was on an NPR radio program.

    Kathy

  • netla
    10 years ago

    Thanks, Kathy. I'll check and see if I can find it.

  • annpan
    10 years ago

    Lemon, I would also like to get more insight into the exuberant and enthusiastic Aussies in my family......and I don't mean the dog breed!
    I am reading a lot of murder mysteries and have tried some of the more "witchy" ones for a change, like the "Chintz 'n China" series by Yasmine Galenorn. I was reading a lot of mysteries with library settings and decided to have a 'tea break'!

  • lemonhead101
    10 years ago

    Annpan - funny!

    Veer - I am glad that you liked reading Judith Hearne.... As you say, it's not a happy read but it is a good one. Have you read others by Moore?

    Saw The Great Gatsby movie last night -- loved it and stayed quite close to story line, I thought. Anyone else seen it? Having read the book in the last week definitely added to the experience for me.

  • timallan
    10 years ago

    I seem to be doing my Hallowe'en reading early this year, having this month finished two rather large books, both dealing with supernatural themes. I absolutely lovedThe Little Stranger by Sarah Waters, and recommend it to anyone interested in "haunted house" stories. The book also paints a very interesting picture of how life in rural England changed after World War II.

    A few days ago I finished Peter Straub's sprawling (and quite gruesome) Floating Dragon. I am sorry to report I found it a bit disappointing, especially compared to his earlier novel Ghost Story, which is one of my favorite scary books. I prefer quiet, unnerving scares to gore. Also, the two books were very similar in their themes, which makes a comparison of the two inevitable.

    Hopefully my next reading choice will be a bit more suitable for summer. The brutal heat has settled on us, unfortunately. I am being a stubborn goat and not turning on my air conditioner until June.

  • kathy_t
    10 years ago

    I know it's June and another monthly thread has already begun, but I just want to respond to Lemonhead (Liz) about the Gatsby film. I saw it and loved it. At first, I was a bit put-off by the modern music and the over-the-top circus atmosphere of Gatsby's parties because those, of course, did not seem true to the time period. But I got over my misgivings quickly as I was drawn into the film.