Tuesday, July 31, 2012

What I’m Reading

It’s been a long time since I have had a reading post, so get ready for some one or two sentence reviews.

Once Upon a River—Bonnie Jo Campbell

A beautiful lyric book by a great story teller. It’s a coming of age book rolled into a gorgeous account of river life. Highly recommend

The Tiger’s Wife—Tea Olbrecht

This is a difficult book to categorize. It’s fantasy and fictionalized history with strong human and animal characters. Highly recommend

The Girl in the Blue Beret—Bobbie Ann Mason

The history behind this story was very interesting. It’s about how the Belgian resistance helped downed Allied pilots get across the European continent to safety in Spain and one pilot’s efforts to rediscover and thank those who helped him.

Buddha in the Attic—Julie Otsuka

The second person plural narration took a bit of getting used to, but it covers the period of time from about 1925-1945 when Japanese women came to the US to marry. Their lives were not what they expected to say the least. Recommend

The Heart is a Lonely Hunter—Carson McCullough

This is a masterpiece of southern literature. The writing and story are superb. It is hard to believe that the author was in her early twenties when she wrote it. The characters are perfectly drawn. Highly recommend

Shanghai Girls—Lisa See

This is the first of the two books about the Chinese American sisters portrayed in Dreams of Joy. It chronicles their early lives in Shanghai and their emigration to the US. An easy summer read.

Sex on the Moon—Ben Mezrich  is the more or less true story of the NASA intern who stole 800 lbs. of moon rocks from a lab in Houston. Good listening while traveling.

Treasure Mountain by Louis L’Amour and Void Moon by Michael Connelly are pure adventure. One is a western, the other a crime novel. The only change is the characters and setting. Easy summer reading or travel books.

The Uninvited Guests—Sadie Jones

I think this review sums it up: Downton Abbey meets Twilight Zone. I did not like this book many others loved.

Our Man in Havana—Graham Greene

Set in Cuba in the last year of the Batista regime, this book chronicles the story of a vacuum cleaner salesman who becomes a reluctant spy for the British. It was funny and enjoyable.

Homer and Langley—E.L. Doctorow

The story of two brothers who become recluses in their once fashionable 5th Avenue home.  Homer is blind and the over the 50 plus years of the story line, his brother Langley sinks ever deeper into mental illness. It is loosely based on the true story of the Collyer brothers chronicled in the book Ghostly Men by Franz Lidz. If you like E.L. Doctorow, you will like this book.

Best of the Bunch

Once Upon a River, The Tiger’s Wife, and the Heart is a Lonely Hunter.


  1. I'm making note of your favorites. I saw The Tigers Wife on sale in the store the other day and didn't buy it because I thought maybe I already had but no, I have Tiger by John Valiant, sitting in my to be read pile.

  2. Thanks for these recommendations... always looking for good reads!