Thursday, October 1, 2009

I read when I can, which isn't much anymore.

I just finished reading The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows), which was recommended by someone, somewhere. Sorry I can't remember who/where; I'd love to give credit. If you are the someone, please leave a comment and let me know.

Anyway, the book is a series of letters written between the characters. It is set mostly on the island of Guernsey (one of the Channel Islands between England and France) at the end of World War II. It gives a fascinating account of the Occupation of Guernsey (and the rest of England) through the eyes of the fictitious characters. A third of the way through it, I considered putting it down for good, but something made me keep reading . . . I always have to know how to turns out! And I'm so glad I did. The farther I went, the more I loved the book. In the end, I was gladly staying up until midnight to finish it.

Most of the time I read things like National Review when I have any time to read at all, so this was a treat. Pure brain candy. But it did get me interested in learning more about the Channel Islands, and there was a mention of an author named Charles Lamb. After I read about him, I kept thinking the name sounded familiar, so I scoured my bookshelves, and sure enough, there was Tales from Shakespeare, by Charles and Mary Lamb. In the Guernsey book, I learned that Charles Lamb's sister Mary was mentally ill and actually killed their mother. Charles begged the judge to release her into his care, which the judge did, and Charles was responsible for her for the rest of her life. She had periods of lucidity during which she authored books with him.

I love learning new stuff.

The next book on my list is In the Heart of the Rockies, by G.A. Henty. I've never read anything by him, but have heard lots of good reviews, so I'm going to give him a whirl. Not literally.

Happy reading!

Be thankful ~


1 comment:

Catherine said...

Absolutely LOVED that book -- elegantly written and incredibly interesting. And the amount of research that goes into a book like that is staggering, really.

My mom loved it, too, (she read it during chemo treatments last winter).