Friday, June 01, 2007

So many books, so little time

Actually, that is not true: there is always enough time to read! Here are some books I've been reading lately:

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo. This beautifully illustrated short novel tells the story of a self-centred china rabbit who is separated from his doting owner and learns a great deal about himself, life, and love from those he meets on his journey.

The Glass Castle , a memoir by Jeannette Walls, a New York journalist. This is a fascinating, at times almost unbelievable, true story. Walls tells about how she and her three siblings grew up with a brilliant alcoholic father and a free-spirited, irresponsible mother, and how they lived in poor, squalid conditions all over the U.S. until the children were each able to "escape" to New York and create new lives ... but can you ever really escape your past?

Ordinary Grace by Kathleen Brehony. Brehony examines why people do good things for others. She explores numerous examples of ordinary people who do things like work in soup kitchens, visit seniors, donate organs, teach troubled youth, and many other selfless acts that make life better for a few, or for many.

Prayer by Phillip Yancey. I just got this one, but it looks like it will be as interesting and mind-stretching as all of Yancey's other books.

Rich and I have also watched a couple of interesting movies (actually, there are some broad similarities between these two):

Ladies in Lavender (with Maggie Smith and Judi Dench). This movie shows how two spinster sisters are affected when they find an injured young man on the beach near their home. The plot has some loose ends, but the portrayal of the two women is really touching.

Second-Hand Lions (with Robert Duvall and Michael Caine). A young boy comes to spend the summer on a farm with his two eccentric great-uncles and gets caught up in the mystery of their fascinating past. Are the stories true? Or does that even matter? A delightful, surprising final scene makes for a satisfying conclusion. (Thanks for the recommendation, Brenda!)

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