Saturday, June 05, 2010


I have not posted much this week, so today I will give you a bunch of posts. It's more fun than cleaning the bathroom!

I read 13 books in May. The best accomplishment for me was finishing the list of books for 1957 in My Big Fat Reading Project. The next best was finishing The Second Sex, which I have been wading through for almost two years!

Memories of a Catholic Girlhood, Mary McCarthy: Recollections of her years growing up, from 1957. I like this author so much and this was one of her best.

Blue Ridge Billy, Lois Lenski: I am reading through her Regional Series for kids. This one is from 1946, set in the Blue Ridge mountains. She does great with children as characters.

The Long Song, Andrea Levy: Read and reviewed for BookBrowse. (See last post.) One of the best books I read in May.

Sugar Street, Nabuib Mahfouz: From the 1957 list; the final volume of his Cairo Trilogy. I like a set of novels set in the same city. After a while, I feel I have been there.

The Oasis, Mary McCarthy: I missed this when I was reading the 1949 list. A novel about some people who attempt a utopian community; full of irony; not her best.

Ghost Country, Sara Paretsky: This is a stand-alone though still set in Chicago, with the homeless, a musician and a strange family tale. I love Paretsky.

The Town, William Faulkner: I haven't read a Faulkner I liked for a while but this one was great. The second of a trilogy set in his imaginary county with a fine tale to tell. From 1957.

Rat, Fernanda Eberstadt: Reviewed for BookBrowse. Best thing I read in May. I was blown away and have a new author to read: she has several earlier novels. Teenage girl looking for father, great road trip, set in southern France. READ IT!

The 19th Wife, David Ebershoff: Actually not bad, if you are in the mood for Mormons and polygamy. Read it for a reading group, but finished it 20 minutes before the meeting and hadn't had a shower, so didn't go.

Sense & Sensibility, Jane Austen: Three down, three to go. She is not my favorite by a long way, though it made a funny juxtaposition with The Second Sex. Read it for a reading group. Most of the members found it amazing that people cared so much about who had how much money. I found it amazing that they found it amazing. I mean this is LA in the 21st century.

A Winter's Love, Madeleine L'Engle: One of her early novels for adults from 1957. A wife and mother is torn between a man she loves and the man she is married to. I know, not an original story but her writing is so beautiful, yet real and true. I will take her over Anita Shreve any day.

The Second Sex, Simone de Beauvoir: It was long, hard to read, emotionally wrenching and eye opening. I am so glad I read it. 

That Hideous Strength, C S Lewis: A book I missed from the 1946 list. It was, IMHO, awful. But now I have read all the C S Lewis on my lists. So.

What great book(s) did you read last month?
Comments welcome on any of these books if you have read them.

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