A visit to PEI that is most welcome

Product DetailsMany of us have warm memories of Anne of Green Gables, both from the novel and the Megan Follows and Colleen Dewhurst TV series. An updated series Anne with an E can now be streamed on Netflix, although I have not seen it. Anne was a favorite character for me and I have reread the novel as an adult. So…as you can imagine, I was excited to learn about this book. It is wonderful! I was torn between moving ahead quickly and savoring. This is a book to be enjoyed for the many photos and for the insight into Maud Montgomery’s life. Even if you have never read Anne of GG, this book provides a lovely, serene and visual armchair travel experience. Highly recommended!

Enjoy your vacation at the Honey Farm on the Hill

My first read of a Jo Thomas novel. Loved the vivid descriptions of Cretan life and food. A story of second chances and choices. An easy and pleasant read, even if it feels a bit predictable at times. Read for lovely characters and some great armchair travel.  Thanks to Netgalley for this read.

The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down

Product DetailsI am reading this nonfiction title  for an undergraduate class, Religion and Healing.  This book offers a profound look at the culture, practices and beliefs of the Hmong people and how these clash with Western medicine when the Lee’s daughter, Lia, is found to have epilepsy (in Hmong culture, the title of the book is the Hmong word for this condition.)  This book is enlightening and heartbreaking.  In our current political climate, it offers a poignant reminder of the importance of learning about other’s belief systems without judging.  Recommended for all readers but especially for those in the “helping” professions.

Don’t erase this title from your to be read stack

Product DetailsElly Griffith’s Ruth Galloway series is up to its ninth book.  I have been reading about Ruth from the very first novel and have fallen in love with this bright, flawed, human and quirky scholar of bones and archaeology.  Each book gives the reader a chance to catch up with Cathbad, a Druid; Nelson, a DCI and his wife Michelle, along with Judy, Clough, Kate and many others in the academic, police and local world of Norfolk.  The books are best read in order for full enjoyment.  Start with The Crossing Places and come up for air after you spend time underground in the latest, The Chalk Pit.  A favorite series of mine!

A non-fiction title worth thinking about

Product DetailsBrene Brown was “discovered” by Oprah Winfrey and went on to develop a loyal readership. This is the third Brown book that I have read. The author, a social worker and social science researcher, educates by effectively using both of these skill sets. Brene Brown shares her own perceptions, struggles and life story to best make her points. She backs this with academic research that she has conducted .
This is not the best written book but its message is powerful, especially in our current political climate of division, silos and the tendency to have strong “confirmation bias.” Brene Brown urges readers to calmly and bravely stand up for their beliefs while being open to having dialogues with those who have opposing views. A short book for such a tall order. It is worth reading.

A society worth joining

Product DetailsDid you know that the Germans occupied the British island of Guernsey for five years during WW II?  In this epistolary novel, through the eyes of Juliet, the authors tell the stories of islanders of all ages and backgrounds.  The characters are portrayed with a deft touch as their foibles and humanity are explored.  There is even some romance.  It is trite to say but the characters felt like friends with whom I wanted to spend lots of time.  Highly recommended!  Enjoy finding out what the pie is and why it was created.

Where Cornwall and Wisconsin Unite

Product DetailsKathleen Ernst has created a cozy mystery niche writing books that take place at historical sites in the Midwest. Her latest tells the stories of Cornish miners who lived and worked in Wisconsin in the 1830s. I was drawn to these parts of the book and was interested enough to look up the Pendarvis site on line. I enjoyed spending time with the main couple, Chloe and Roelke, who feature in all of the books. At times, Chloe’s judgment regarding her safety is faulty but this is in service of the plot. If you like cozies, are interested in a mix of history and contemporary story and want a tour of an interesting location, this book is for you!

“The Nightingale” Sings

Product DetailsThe reviews for this book have been excellent, yet I have only read The Nightingale recently.  This story of two sisters during WW II is about how we become who we are, in part, based on our experiences in our family of origin.  It also reflects on the roles of women in WWII and the choices that are both made and somewhat forced upon one.  Isabelle is reckless, brave and a young woman who has faced many rejections.  Her older sister, Vianne, tries to accommodate during the Occupation but becomes braver as she witnesses the impact of the Nazis on her village.  As you read, wait to see why the book is called The Nightingale and see if you are correct about who the narrator is.  This novel is well worth reading.  Add it to your TBR pile.

Do you think that Agatha Christie has “A Talent for Murder?”

Product DetailsIn this novel, Wilson writes about what might have happened to Agatha Christie during the time that she mysteriously disappeared for ten days.  Using known facts and his imagination, the author creates a fascinating, if somewhat unbelievable explanation, for what transpired.  Best in this book are the biographical facts and insights and the development of characters including Agatha, Archie, Nancy, Una and Davison.  Recommended for fans of Agatha Christie’s books or those interested in knowing more about the author and her times.