Eat, Sleep, Read

One of my favorite t-shirts says “Eat, Sleep, Read” and when I wear it I almost always draw compliments from other avid readers. I have recently read a couple of books that are books about books.  The End of the Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe is a memoir that focuses on the last two years of his mother’s life and the books they read together while she was waiting for chemo treatments. It is not as sad as it sounds. And it led to on-line shopping at Powell’s Books.  My first box of books included:

  • Mary Tileston, Daily Strength for Daily Needs
  • Susan P. Halpern, The Etiquette of Illness
  • Arthur Ransome, Swallows and Amazons

Uncommon Reader

and Alan Bennet’s The Uncommon Reader.  This novella is comfy to hold and a hoot to read. It imagines what might happen if the Queen of England discovers reading in a mobile library parked behind the kitchen at Buckingham Palace.  Of course she reads; however, there is a difference between a casual reader and a compulsive reader. She raises eyebrows when Queen Elizabeth II becomes an avid reader.  It turns out that the books that Alan Bennet (who also wrote the delightful play/movie The History Boys) are books I love so I did not discover any new titles.   Except Proust, but I doubt I will read Proust.

Other book titles that I jotted down from the End of the Life Book Club and have not bought yet:

  • Frances Osborne, The Bolter
  • Sheila Weller, Girls Like Us
  • Alice Monro, Too Much Happiness
  • Victor LaValle, The Big Machine
  • Thomas Mann, Magic Mountain and Death in Venice

And these books I downloaded on my Kindle with my sister-in-law Heidi’s Mother’s recommendation (at Thanksgiving):

  • Simon Winchester, Krakatoa
  • Simon Winchester, Their Noble Lordships.

What are you reading?  Please comment, I really do want to know!

2 thoughts on “Eat, Sleep, Read

  1. I’m reading John Kirkby’s Nevertheless – the story of how he founded CAP (Christians against Poverty). Just finished Benedict le Vay’s Weeping Waters:when Train meets Volcano (the story of the 1953 Tangiwai rail disaster in New Zealand). And before that 9 fabulous volumes of Susan Howatch – 6 of the Starbridge and 3 of the St Benets series, 20th century novels with a decided theological bias.
    Oh, and in the mix I slipped in a Chinese novel about a peasant sighting a UFO, and the consequences for her and her village (can’t remember title or author right now).
    Thanks for your suggestions, Julie. Eat, sleep and read indeed: my favourite kind of living 🙂

  2. Julie….awesome post. I just finished two books that were recommended by my friend Mint. I blew through both. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn and A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson. Gone Girl was a wonderful fiction thriller with some awesome twists and turns. A Walk in the Woods was HILARIOUS…..I mean, freaking hilarious. Bill Bryson is British, moves to Vermont and decides he should hike the AT. I kept reading passages out loud to Chip because he is simply hilarious in his narratives. I recommend both! I’ve got 3 books to take to Africa: Breath, Eyes, Memory by Edwidge Danticat; Beneath the Lion’s Gaze by Maaza Mengiste, and one a friend told me to read ages ago that I hadn’t yet, The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs!!!

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