Sunday, February 21, 2016

Catching Up: What I've Read, What I'm Reading, What I'm Gonna Read

Here's what I've finished lately:

The Passenger by Lisa Lutz

What an incredible ride of a book.

I’d tell you about the main character but which identity should I share with you? Our main character takes on and drops off identities like most of us change apartments. Every change is in reaction to her pursuit by unknown people. People die. People appear from nowhere and shoot to kill. People flee. More mysteries.

What a ride!

The Story of a Soul by St. Therese of Lisieux

St. Therese of Lisieux is one of the most beloved Catholic saints. So what is her story? And why are so many devoted to her?

St. Therese was born to parents who deeply loved the church. Their children were raised in that atmosphere, so it is no surprise that several became nuns, including Therese.

Therese wrote down the story of her life in this little book. In it, the reader gets a feel for the astonishing character that was Therese. She seemed to live her faith every minute of the day. Simply. Devoutly. She was completely devoted to God.

Beautiful and inspiring story.

This Moment is Full of Wonders by Thich Nhat Hanh

Thich Nhat Hanh takes simple meditative thoughts and uses calligraphy to express them in this beautiful gift book. Every stroke is both purposeless and purposeful. The thoughts are there to read and reread in all their complex simplicity. Lovely.

Unpacking My Library: Writers and Their Books edited by Leah Price

What books do writers have in their libraries and why do they keep the books they have on their shelves? That is the subject of this little book.

My Name is Lucy Barton
This is what happens when you love a book an author has written: None of her subsequent books measure up. I adored Olive Kitteridge. I liked Burgess Boys. I tolerated this latest book.

I'll just go ahead and say it: This book read like a first draft. I had glimmers of happy reading this book. But it needed work and somebody decided it was finished. Big mistake.

If you want to know more, here's a little plot summary: Lucy Barton grew up poor, without good relationships with her parents. She gets an opportunity to connect with her mother when Lucy ends up in the hospital.

Nice idea for a plot, I thought, but the book needed more work to really touch me. Perhaps I need to start a new category of books: Books that Need Revision.

The Cure by Jo Marchant

Most books about the mind-body connection seem to be wildly leaning one way or the other: it's nonsense or it's gospel. Cure by Jo Marchant is different. Marchant cautiously approaches each claim in a deeply scientific way, remaining both open and skeptical to results.

I loved this read and I highly recommend it. It's a readable book, with both stories and science, to investigate all the many ways mind and body are connected. If you have interest in this topic, without permanently aligning yourself to one end of the spectrum or the other, I think you will find this book to be fascinating.

What am I reading now?

What arrived this week?

What are you reading this week??

What is the Sunday SalonImagine some university library's vast reading room. It's filled with people--students and faculty and strangers who've wandered in. They're seated at great oaken desks, books piled all around them,and they're all feverishly reading and jotting notes in their leather-bound journals as they go. Later they'll mill around the open dictionaries and compare their thoughts on the afternoon's literary intake....That's what happens at the Sunday Salon, except it's all virtual. Every Sunday the bloggers participating in that week's Salon get together--at their separate desks, in their own particular time zones--and read. And blog about their reading. And comment on one another's blogs. Think of it as an informal, weekly, mini read-a-thon, an excuse to put aside one's earthly responsibilities and fall into a good book. Click here to join the Salon.

The Sunday Post is a meme hosted by Kimba at Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It's a chance to share news and recap the past week.

Mailbox Monday was created by Marcia at The Printed Page. We share books that we found in our mailboxes last week. 
 It is now being hosted here.

Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews in which you can share the books you've acquired.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is where we share what we read this past week, what we hope to read this week…. and anything in between!  This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from! I love being a part of this and I hope you do too! It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is now being hosted at The Book Date.


  1. I need to seek out This Moment is Full out of Wonders. That sounds like a good one, not that the other ones don't, but that one sounds especially good to me. I know there's a group reading The Twelve Steps book. Are you doing that also? As for what I'm reading, over Lent, I'm working my way through Being Mortal by Atul Gawande and when I can, have been making my way through Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow.

    1. I should do the Twelve Steps, but I think I'm going to have to go slower with the ideas than the pace a book club might set.

  2. Your new books are enticing, especially the Bill Bryson book and the book on compassion. Great reading week!

    1. Yes, I've had a surprisingly excellent reading year. So far.

  3. That description of The Passenger makes me want to read it! Writing that one down. LOL. and the Bill Bryson book looks good too, I saw a good review of it. Happy Sunday Deb!

  4. Oh I've been eyeing The Passenger for some time now. I keep making sure I don't forget about it, but I think I'm just going to get it and put it on top of the "growing" TBR pile! I have also read a few of Thich Nhat Hanh's books learning about mindfulness, and have enjoyed the wisdom in each of them.

    Great post, Deb! All the books sound really interesting. And I might have to add The Shift to my take a better look at list too. I don't know why, but I just tend to gravitate to those kinds of books. Too bad about the Elizabeth Strout book. I've been debating about reading it after hearing so many mixed review.

    Have a great week!

  5. I loved The Passenger...and I have My Name is Lucy Barton on my list. Enjoy your week, and here are MY WEEKLY UPDATES

  6. Looks like some good reading. I still haven't read Olive Kitteridge. I'll plan on that but skip the latest one. I love the idea of The Cure -- a book that strikes a balance between skepticism and fanatacism.

    Glad to see Twelve Steps on your list! My Twelve Steps project is going for a whole year, so you have plenty of time to join us!

  7. I enjoyed The Road to Little Dribbling and I have My Name is Lucy Barton on my list. I did't have Unpacking My Library but I do now. I love books about books and the topic sounds fascinating! Have a great week!

  8. i am deeply impressed by how much you read. I wish I had that kind of dedication!

  9. i am deeply impressed by how much you read. I wish I had that kind of dedication!

  10. It's so good to see you're back! As always, you've read a lot. What did you think of Twelve Steps?

  11. I may be one of the few people not reading The Passenger. I plan to get to it sometime soon. I hope it's as good as everyone is saying. Lots of lovely books for you. Happy reading:)

    My Sunday Post -

  12. Lots of great reading material here! I am especially intrigue by Unpacking My Library :)

  13. I really liked THE SHIFT. I will be curious what you think of it. Happy reading!

  14. I am not keeping up on the latest reading that everyone else is doing, but I am adding to my list of books to try. For some reason, I can't carve out big chunks of reading time to move forward. I think I will have to work at changing that, or I will never get to read all the books I want to read.

  15. Some interesting-looking reads! Have a great week :)

  16. The Passenger seems to be all over the blogosphere these days. You've got me curious about it! I agree with your assessment of Strout's book -- it's not an easy read. I kept wanting a bit more story. There were reflections back on her life and memories -- but I needed a more well-rounded story. hmm. I still like Strout though.

  17. I actually went to a high school named after St. Therese! I also love Bill Bryson but haven't read this one, so I'm very excited!! Have a great week!

  18. Awesome week as usual.

    The Passenger was quite good. I think we have discussed our enjoyment.

    The Story of A Soul should be a wonderful read.

    Have a good rest of the week.

    Silver's Reviews
    My It's Monday, What Are You Reading


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