The following is a list of what I’m currently reading, or of what I’ve recently finished. Please comment on any books that you’ve also read or books that you’ve been interested in reading. See guys, it’s like a book club! Only, Oprah’s not invited.
Currently Reading: Pride and Prejudice -Jane Austen
I’m going to be honest here folks, I’m not too excited about this little endeavor right now. I’ve made it to Part Two, but I’m finding it hard to stay interested so I only read a few chapters (which are about 2 – 6 pages each), then I put it down and read my guilty pleasure book (A Million Little Pieces by James Frey – so take that Oprah!). I hear from Brittany (the girl that I blame for my current state of sorrow) that the novel really picks up. I also heard this from my waiter last night at Steak-n-Shake. And so I will continue on…
Just finished: A Map of the World -Jane Hamilton
This book was great. Hamilton shifts point of view from the main character, Alice, and her husband, Howard. It deals very much with friendship, love, and marriage. Here’s a quote from the back cover that I agree with, “Stunning prose and unforgettable characters…an enthralling tale of guilt, betrayal, and the terrifying ways our lives can spin out of control” (Entertainment Weekly).
Recently: Snow Falling on Cedars -David Guterson
This is a compelling read. I could hardly put it down…I think I finished it in about a week, which is something when you’re going to grad school and student teaching full-time. The story is dark, which is always appealing to me. The characters are meaningful, and the story is obsessable (if that’s a word). It reminds me of a “whodunnit” Charles Dickens’ style. This is high praise from me!!
Recently: House of the Scorpion -Nancy Farmer
This was a good Young Adult (YA) novel that was recommended to me by my mentor teacher. It’s a pretty thick book, but a fast, fun read. My seventh graders LOVED it!! They finished it in November and STILL talk about! (It’s now March.) While it is an “easy” read, it’s always good to give students something easy so that they’re reminded that it doesn’t have to be work to read.
Recently: A Separate Peace –John Knowles
I was interested in reading this book because I know that some high schools teach it. I found it while rifling through my mentor’s library. But, I’ll admit that after the first chapter I was tempted to put it down and go borrow The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. I’ll keep you posted…adhering to my promise of keeping you posted: I don’t recommend this book! It’s like a bad version of Dead Poet’s Society. The characters were bland, and the plot was predictable. I say you pass.
Recently: The Joy Luck Club -Amy Tan
Love! This is a masterpiece. Tan incorporates the lives of eight very different Chinese women in sixteen short chapters. I’m in awe. I fell in love with each character for different reasons. I was sad to finish their stories. Next on the agenda: Rent the DVD.
Recently: The Dollmaker -Harriette Arnow
I found this book for $1.48 at Goodwill. What a steal! I chose it mainly because of the afterword by Joyce Carol Oates (aka My Hero), and I’m so glad that she recommended it. It’s a story set in the time of WWII. Gertie, wife and mother of five, must learn hard lessons in “a pitiless world of unendurable poverty.” Arnow’s story is glorious.