Reading Update

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My photographs are terrible here and it doesn’t help that all of my books are cream/tan. Anyway, here’s an update on my little shelf project.

The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America. George Packer
Whoa, read this if it all sounds good to you. George Packer takes the lives of three ordinary Americans as well as short biographies of famous Americans to create a mosaic of life in America right now. Honestly, this is a nonfiction masterpiece.

Blue Nights. Joan Didion
Held me completely captive in California. I may have made Telfer sit with the girls on the plane so I could finish it. I want to read more Joan Didion beyond her two, small grief-related books: The Year of Magical Thinking written after the death of her husband and then Blue Nights after the death of her daughter. “When we talk about our mortality, we are talking about our children.”

The Widower’s Tale. Julia Glass
Julia Glass is one of my favorite novelists. Three Junes was one of the first contemporary novels I read out of college and it had an enormous impact on my life and the way I viewed the world. The Widower’s Tale takes a bit to get into but I was so happy to spend time with these characters.

Beatrix Potter’s Gardening Life. Marta McDowell
A Christmas present that I was saving for summer. It feels right to read about gardening in the summer…Such a lovely little book about Beatrix Potter’s gardens and gardening life. 

Also, I tried to read The Panopticon by Jenni Fagan. It’s on the shelf but I got 35 pages in and I just couldn’t go on. It was a freebie in a Powell’s Indiespensable box which also makes me feel better about not finishing. Ten years ago I would have gritted my teeth and read on. Now, I hope I am a little more gentle with myself. I don’t need to finish everything I start. I know not every book is meant for me and I am okay with that. Maybe another time (but I doubt it with this one).

In other news, Telfer and I are jazzed about this list from EW on the “The 55 Essential Movies Kids Must Experience (Before They Turn 13).” There are some absolutely fabulous movies here that I would love to see again, especially as a parent. The girls have seen many of the movies but we were thinking it would be fun to use this list to guide our family movie night choices. We usually let the girls pick the movie and they usually choose something like Tinkerbell or Aristocats or the truly awful the Princess and the Frog. I might watch ten minutes and then I am absolutely done. I could get behind a list however. What is it with me and lists? 

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