Monday, June 5, 2017

Recent Reads

Hello! I have been reading a lot lately and I have some books to share. I will keep my thoughts brief, but I am always looking for recommendations in all genres.

Last time I updated you I mentioned that I had just started Under the Banner of Heaven, by Jonathan Krakauer. 
Well, I have made it through the book and it was a really compelling read. The book outlines the heinous murdersof a woman and a child by two men who used their faith to justify the killings. The majority of the book explores the history of the Mormon religion from its origins and endeavors to understand how the killers used their own strange and violent fundamentalist beliefs (separate from modern Mormonism) as a call to kill.

I found this book to be extremely fascinating as I was only loosely aware of the history of Mormonism, and this gave a clear historical timeline. Of course the sensational story of the murders gives the book a bit of a page turner quality too. I recommend this read if you are as interested learning more about the history of the Mormon faith, which is often shrouded in mystery.

The Story of a New Name, by Elena Ferrante is the second book in a series known as the Neopolitan Novels. The story follows the lives of two women from childhood and, in the second novel, into young adulthood. I am enjoying the series immensely as the writing is beautiful and descriptive, the characters are richly developed and the city of Naples feels so real. I can't wait to start the third.

Devil in the White City, by Erik Larson, follows the parallel timelines of the Chicago World's Fair, and the life of HH Holmes. Set in the dirty and bustling streets of 19th century Chicago the juxtaposition of the wealth and innovation behind the development of the fair and the filthy streets of a poor city, whose river sometimes reverses flow and fills the air with the pungent odors of slaughterhouses and sewage, is startling. 

The brilliant minds behind the fair are studied with care as they meticulously address the issues and expectations surrounding their enormous task. Mirroring the efforts of artists and architects is the story of HH Holmes, brilliant and innovative in his own terrible fashion. The book masterfully explores the highs and very dark lows of bright brains set on a task. 

In Cold Blood, by Truman Capote. A classic for a reason.

I have started reading and pondering a poem or two a day. I am currently working my way through 100 Selected Poems by e.e. Cummings. 

Finally, I read to the girls every day. We go through many books that are simply not worth mentioning, either because you already know about them or because they aren't special. I did just buy this book at the local bookstore. It features 100 stories of different women who did/are doing something amazing with life. We read a couple of stories each night. The girls are so into it! The concise stories of powerful women (scientists, artists, dancers, cyclists, models, botanists, etc.) inspire conversation and the accompanying art, all by talented female artists, are all laying an important groundwork for these girls. They can do anything! 

What are you reading?

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