Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Kara's Winter Reading

I stopped reading for a while, because of sickness. Then we had company. Then we went on vacation. Lots of normal things in between. Here are a few comments on the books I've enjoyed since my last post.

Mudhouse Sabbath by Lauren Winner

A small book of meditations on things like candles, prayer, and weddings. Winner muses on how to celebrate God in a Christian way, after her conversion from orthodox Judaism.

A Wrinkle in Time
and A Swiftly Tilting Planet by Madeleine L'Engle

L'Engle is fast becoming my new favourite author. In both these books, I was immediately drawn in to the story by her compelling picture of homelife. She has a knack of writing about things that are so ubiquitous as to become unnoticed, i.e. the creak of a stairstep or the sound of a house when the refrigerator is off. These bits of the ordinary are what help me get into stories that might otherwise seem too outlandish.

Pajama School by Natalie Wickham

It's always fun reading books by friends. I am able to get a glimpse of another side of a person, through her writing. So because of this, I found this faith memoir hard to put down. However, the average person might not find it so engaging.

The Chase (A Long, Fatal Love Chase) by Louisa May Alcott

I expected this to be a bad book, and so was able to thoroughly enjoy it. It's one of those novels that would have been better left unpublished in an attic. It reads like a teenager's first effort, full of smudgy crayon characters, melodrama and with a plot guessable from the beginning. As long as you don't take it too seriously, it's great fun.

Monsoon Diary: Reveries and recipes from India by Shoba Narayan

This is my favourite sort of food book: half memoir, half cookbook. This gave me a taste of life in India, in more ways than one! I've added her recipe for Channa Masala to my regular repertoire.

Searching for God Knows What by Donald Miller

Not nearly so good as Blue Like Jazz. He lost me a few chapters in, probably right around the spot where he starts having an imaginary conversation with an angel. Or something. I would have preferred more talk about God, and less about people.

Turkish Cooking by Ghillie Besan

Full of tasty recipes. I tried hummus, menemen and spinach salad, among others.

Repairing the Ruins, the classical and Christian challenge to modern education. Edited by Douglas Wilson

A mixed bag of essays, focused on classical education in a private school setting. One of the best talked about how to teach mathematics in a Christian manner.

Honey for a Child's Heart
by Gladys Hunt

I read this while on vacation in Sydney. Hunt writes winsomely about the importance of reading aloud as a family, and gives many interesting book recommendations.

Psmith Journalist by P.G. Wodehouse

Note that the 'P' is silent. :) According to Wodehouse, New York City is full of people who read newspapers non-stop. There are also swarms of thugs with guns. Sometimes the two overlap. Not having been there myself, I have nothing to say on the matter.

Watership Down by Richard Adams

I was a bit skeptical of a novel featuring rabbits. Especially rabbits who see visions. However, I kept at it, and soon couldn't stop til I reached the beautiful conclusion. This is imaginative writing at its finest. I especially like the alternating chapters of rabbit mythology.

A Primer on Worship and Reformation by Douglas Wilson

I end up reading one of Wilson's books every month or so. He makes theology and Christian living beautiful. This is a very small book advocating a return to God honouring worship as an antidote for the ills of modern, man-centered evangelicalism. Highly recommended.

Gingerbread Baby by Jan Brett

I love this picture book: beautiful illustrations, not too long, and fun for adults as well.

1 comment:

Kara said...

I agree about L'engle. I've been reading through the Time quartet, in order for once, and I just started _A Circle of Quiet_. Three chapters in, it is utterly inspirational... especially the bit on the nature of creativity.

Kara K. in Texas