Things to Read - On the Bookshelf (May 2015)
Lots of great reads lately. My favorites are starred.
1. Stone Mattress: Nine Tales - This is a really quirky selection Margaret Atwood's recent short stories. She calls them "tales about tales" and very few of the stories seemed to have much in common. Though almost all the characters are old and reflecting on life in some way or another. Not a bad read, but definitely not Atwood's best.
***2. Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She's "Learned" - I spent 2 months on the library waiting list to finally read this book. I love HBO's Girls. I love Lena Dunham. And, like Dunham, I'm a sharer. In conversations, I often receive a look like "whoah, too much information." I have a hard time with the line between appropriate and over the top. And civility. But, wow, some of the stuff Dunham shares made me uncomfortable. All I could think is "her mom read this? How awkward." No subject is off limits. I'm still not sure how I feel about all of this information, should some things remain private? I don't know. But for a Dunham fan, it's still almost impossible to not to enjoy this book, even while you cringe.
*** 3. The Girl on the Train - I can't say this is deep literature or anything close. But I could not put it down. Not for a second. The suspense, oh the suspense. And the end was worth it. A really fun book to read.
4. The Bees - I love the concept of a book about bees told through the perspective of a bee. And the author uses beautiful details to describe how Flora, the main character, sees/smells the world around her. But there didn't seem to be much of a plot, rather Flora stumbles from one situation to another. After awhile reading The Bees began to feel like a chore and I never made it past page 123.
**** 5. River Town: Two Years on the Yangtze - READ THIS BOOK. Peter Hessler's memoir of the time he spent in the Chinese "river town" of Fuling during the 1990s made me feel like I was there with him. I love when a book has the power to transport you somewhere else, with people so real that you expect to meet them one day. This is that book.
**** 6. Date Night In: More than 120 Recipes to Nourish Your Relationship - This is my favorite new cookbook. It's fancy, but doable. After Dan spent a weekend away for work, the kids and I made him the rainbow chip cake as a welcome home surprise. It was by far my best baked good ever. Amazing.