May Tub o' Books

As promised yesterday, here is my list of books for May. I promise to be more timely each month, but it's for practice. This is far more extensive than it usually will be because of our bookstore trip. (And finding books I wanted to read but couldn't buy, hence a long library list.) Hope you find a book you love!

But first...a little art. Try to get beyond the outfit. 

Books Bought

I bought more books than usual. On our recent somewhat- rambling road trip through  New England, mostly Vermont, with a fellow bookophile into 18 independent bookstores the locations of which we had placed on our collective planning maps, it was inevitable that I had to send books home in the mail. God bless Media Mail. Also note I count Audiobooks and the few non-art Kindle books I get.

This is How It Always Is, Laurie Frankel

The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels, Jon Meacham

How to Make Hand-Drawn Maps, Helen Cann (Kindle)

Why Travel Matters: A Guide to the Life-Changing Effects of Travel,  Craig Storti

Small Great Things, Jodi Picoult

Shadow Child, Rahna Reiko Rizzutollow. (These last two were blind prizes for  $2 donations for a local charity in one bookstore. I lucked out! See June's list.)

Bellows Falls, Archer Mayer

Out of the Woods, Lynn Darling

Not My Blood, Barbara Cleverly. ($3.98, Scotland Yard, 1933, "intricate, erudite, witty" series.)  Couldn't resist. I'll let you know. 

 Here and Gone, Haylen Beck

The Fall of LIsa Bellow, Ssuan Perabo

365 Days of Tea, Ruby Silvious


Mindfulness & the Art of Drawing, Wendy Ann Greenhalgh

On Tyranny, Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century, Timothy Snyder

Abracadabra Spring, (a lusciously illustrated picture book for my collection) Anne Sibley O'Brien, Susan Gal, illustrator.



                                                     Susan Gal

                                                    Susan Gal


Books Borrowed:

I find these books in several ways: from browsing bookstores and knowing I can't buy everything that appeals to me, from recommendations from friends and published book reviews, random discoveries at the library, for personal "assignments" (books related to art interests but not art technique books) and book club books. And, as you might guess, I never read everything in the pile of library books and I know the idiocy of having so many borrowed books at a time, but c'est la vie. I will never change. It's already too late. 

American By Day, Derek B. Miller 

Brighton, Michael T. Harvey

Idaho, Emily Ruskovich

The Kelloggs, Harvey Markel

The Penny Poet of Portsmouth, Katherine Towler

Tin Men, Mike Knowles

Burqas, Baseball, and Apple Pie, Ranya Tabari Idliby

Lab Girl, Hope Jahren

Y is for Yesterday, Sue Grafton

The Temptation of Forgiveness,  Donna Leon

Night Moves, Jonathan Kellerman, audiobook

My Not So Perfect Life, Sophie Kinsella



Books Read:

Not so many this month - too busy traveling! 

This is How It Always Is, Laurie Frankel.  

My Life With Bob: Flawed Heroine Keeps Book of Books, Plot Ensues: Pamela Paul.

Heat Lightning, John Sanford, audiobook.  

Night Moves, Jonathan Kellerman   (I like to listen to this series narrated by John Rubenstein)

Bellows Falls, Archer Mayer  (A Vermont setting and a favorite mystery author)

Seattle author Laurie Frankel's book was our book club choice and I confess I probably wouldn't have found it on my own. But as it often happens, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I loved her way with words and the characters she built so well. Amongst large doses of her humor resides a relevant theme and a life lesson or two well worthy of conversation. 

 “It was like when your car spins out on an icy road, and your senses turn up so high that time seems to slow because you notice everything, and you just sit in your spinning car waiting, waiting, to see if you’re going to die.”

 “I never had a playdate with a girl before,” to which Rigel had replied, “Oh it’s great. Their rooms smell way better.”

 “There was no way to fall in love with a woman just for her body in Wisconsin in January.”

“The real trick is you have to forge your way straight ahead through the trees where there is no path.” 

I have had My Life With Bob on my to-read pile for awhile and have grabbed a chapter here and there. It is a good book for that. But finally I dedicated an afternoon to complete it. Because, woe iz me, I can't resist reading books about books and loving books. Pamela Paul has kept a journal of books she has read for 28 years, through high school and college, on her travels and her moves. It is her Book of Books (hence, "BOB.") Her journal is a reflection of her life's hopes, dreams, disappoints, mistakes, ideas, and need for escapes. Mostly it is about the powerful relationship a reader can have with books and how books can provide companionsihp, perspective, entertainment, and self-knowledge. (And for me, a way to know that my own thoughts - high-minded and downright evil sometimes, my wishes and desires, and the occasional really stupid things I do, are not unique to me. All is well; I am normal, after all.) 


"Sometimes it takes a book to jolt you out of where you are. It doesn't have to be a great book. Just the right books at the right moment, one that opens something up or exposes you to something new or somehow forces you to reexamine your life; the sustained and immersive experience of reading a book can do this in ways not even the best TV show or movie can. it can be altogether transformative. "




And as for John Sanford's book, let me just say this: I LOVE Virgil Flowers!. And the conversation between the guys makes me laugh every time. Always a good story, the guilty party never a giveaway , just fun reads (despite some tendency toward a brutal crime or two.) I never miss a John Sanford or Michael Connelly book. And I love a good mystery any old time.

One more thing: The blog post headers I am using for this series come right off my wall where I have framed many cards and posters that reflect my love of books. Unfortunately, I do not have the artist's names anymore. If anyone recognizes an art piece, I would be deliriously happy to give credit. Until then, I hope to not rot in hell at my turn. Which is not to take it lightly; I believe in credit where due!