Tuesday, January 31, 2012

january bookstand

Thought I would start cataloging what I read this past month, if for no other reason than I have some way to track the books. (I do not care to count how many times I have started a book, and then about halfway through, think to myself, "Geez, this seems awfully familiar." Unfortunately, I cannot remember the ending so I end up re-reading the whole dang thing. Which begs the question: if it was such an unremarkable book that I can't remember the ending, then why the heck should I spend time reading it again?)

The House at Tyneford, by Natasha Solomons
Highly recommend, especially if you are a fan of Downton Abbey. A slightly different time period—this time right before World War II—but it highlights an interesting facet of British history of which I was unaware and held my interest to the end.

All Wound Up, by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
Highly recommend, if you like to read about knitting. I have spoken of my love and admiration for the work of Ms. Pearl-McPhee before. I tend to gulp her essay books down in a few nights and then regret devouring them so quickly. This time I spaced it out by reading entire books between each couple of essays. Worked well to make me feel like I had really savored the book this time.

Ellis Island, by Kate Kerrigan
Recommend, especially if you are interested in Irish history or the American immigrant experience. It took me a while to get into the book, but the ending was not obvious and I did end up enjoying it.

Island of Wings, by Karin Altenberg
Recommend. Again with the British history! A very interesting look at the life of a missionary (based on a historical figure) in St Kilda, the rugged islands from which Soay sheep originated.

Proof of Heaven, by Mary Curran Hackett
Meh. I just couldn't get into this book. I did finish it (rare is the book I don't plod my way through) but it never grabbed me.

That's it for this month! I'd love to hear if you've read any of these, and your thoughts if you did.


  1. Yay! I need some good reads. Thanks for the recommendations. I've come to realize I have limited reading time left in my life, so I have stopped plodding through. If it's not good I put it down and move on.

  2. I too rush through Stephanie Pearl-McPhee's books much too quickly. They are definitely worth the re-read, if only to get a really good chuckle yet again!