Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Mistress Shakespeare

I usually steer away from historical fiction but the name "Shakespeare" in the title sucked me in and I'm glad I picked it up at the library.

Will and Anne Whateley were childhood sweethearts and, after a separation, secretly married the day before Will was forced by his family to marry Anne Hathaway because he'd gotten her pregnant while he and his true love were estranged.

This novel follows them as they find a way to be together. It also chronicles what Will went through to become a playwright and the politics involved.

This book is really a nice love story with a smattering of history thrown in.

This book would please anyone interested in Shakespeare or the Elizabethan era.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

The Sunday Salon

Battening down the hatches, here in NH, for another snow storm. But, I'm on winter vacation this week so the weather can do whatever it wants!

It was a crazy and busy week at school so I didn't get as much reading done as I'd hoped. I'm about 3/4 of the way through two books:

Ordinary Genius is a beautifully-written book about how to write poetry. I'm taking my time with it so I can savor the ideas.

Mistress Shakespeare is full of historical references but not so much that it takes away from the romance between Will and Anne Whateley. I'm really enjoying this visit to old England!

Anyway, I hope to get lots of reading in this week, after the shoveling, of course!

You have a good week, too!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Two for Sunday

Good Sunday morning, Saloners. Woke up to a milky sky so I'm thinking it's going to be a good day to hibernate and read.

And I've got two excellent books going.

Mistress Shakespeare is getting pretty interesting. It's based on the idea that Shakespeare had a grilfriend when he was forced to marry Anne Hathaway.

Ordinary Genius is a wonderfully-written book for poets, writers, and students. It contains many suggested exercises to sharpen writing skills and I'm going to use them with my poetry-writing students.

Hope everyone has an accomplished reading day!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Comfort Food by Kate Jacobs

Like her book Knit Two I was not sucked in right from the beginning. Too, too much telling about background info that could have been woven into the rest of it.

BUT, once that was done, I really got into the book and loved it.

Augusta is a cook on the CookingChannel and how she keeps herself fresh and deals with her two daughters' lives and the other people on her show makes for an enjoyable read.

I liked the backstage look at how a show is produced.

So, all in all, a winner!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

To Read or Not to Read

Yesterday morning when I got up it was -12. Today it was 40 degrees! Crazy. Now, we're heading downhill, again. And the roller coaster of winter continues!

I'm still reading Comfort Food by Kate Jacobs and enjoying it but it's kind of slow-going. I could have stayed home yesterday and read all afternoon but the sun was shining and it warmed up so I went for a walk up my husband's skid road and watched him cut some trees down, instead.

Happy reading!

Friday, February 6, 2009

A Child Called "It"

I've been taping this book all week for a student at school who has had brain cancer and gone through the treatment twice. Now she's haveing difficulty with headaches and blurred vision. She has to read this book for her psychology class.

It made me so sad and angry to read about what little David had to go through. While his mother was sick and vindictive and abusive beyond belief, his father's refusal to stand up to her and get her help or have her institutionalized angered me even more. How he could just let her treat their son that way is beyond me.

The strength of this kid is just amazing!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

The Night Stalker by James Swain

Last Friday at the beginning of Silent Reading in my British Literature class, I held up two books, The Night Stalker and The Book of Lies and asked the kids which one I should read next. They all said, "The Night Stalker."

So, I tried it and was hooked right from the beginning. Smart kids!

Jack (I've read so many books lately with a Jack as the main character!) Carpenter is a former cop who now does private investigations to find missing children. He's hired by a man on death row to find his grandson. His intuition, values, and willingness to break the rules make for a very likeable character.

This is the second book starring Jack so now, I'm going to go back and read the first one. Hopefully, there'll be a third!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Foreign Body by Robin Cook

I'm late this week! My son and his girlfriend came up for the weekend and I've been trying to finish some crafting projects.

I don't think I've read a Robin Cook novel since Coma which I loved years and years ago. I think I'll have to go back and read some of his others since I really liked this one.

Jennifer Hernandez's grandmother goes to India to have surgery because it's so much cheaper but dies unexpectedly. Jennifer doesn't believe it's a heart attack so goes to New Delhi to investigate.

I loved the Indian setting and reading about the area. The book describes both the beauty and the squalor.

A worthwhile read!