Wednesday, March 02, 2016

A Four-Book February



Four books again this month, and I even had an extra day in February this year! Not horrible, but not my standard. Packing and moving and driving...oh my!

This is what I read:

1. Remarkable Creatures - Tracy Chevalier. After reading The French Lieutenant's Woman, I didn't want to leave Lyme, where most of the novel takes place, so I decided to stay there with Remarkable Creatures, a historical novel (early 1800s) about amateur paleontologist Mary Anning and her fossil-hunting friend, Elizabeth Philpot. They were confederates in a world of men greedily eager to take credit for their accomplishments while harrumphing about how unladylike it is for women to take an interest in fossils. I loved Mary and Elizabeth, and hated that they had a catfight of sorts over one of these stupid asses that couldn't have found a T. Rex if he'd had it served to him on a platter for Sunday dinner. I remember enjoying Girl with a Pearl Earring, but I was really impressed with this novel by Chevalier. Can't decide which of hers to read next.

2. The Revenant - Michael Punke.  I liked the novel, but it was a bit stiff and starchy. It read like nonfiction, but not in a good way. Didactic is the word I think I am looking for. The only part where it seemed truly lively was when Hugh Glass was travelling with a group of French-Canadians down the river. Otherwise, it was a slog. Bit of a disappointment; but I'd gladly see the movie again.

3. Relish: My Life in the Kitchen - Lucy Knisley.  Wow. I typed this title and got hungry all over again. Graphic novelist Knisley grew up with a chef for a mother and a foodie for a father, so from the very beginning, she was exposed to the very best of culinary delights. She recounts these delights in gorgeous illustrations and recipes. So good. So satisfying. How many ways can you say Yum?

4. Think Small - House Beautiful. I was enjoying reading about how people make the most of their small living spaces and devouring the color-soaked photos as I turned the glossy pages, but then it started getting a little book-unfriendly. Draperies to conceal your books?  NO. Hang artwork over the  books on your bookshelves? NO.  No, no, no. There just aren't enough noes.

Mom has been sprung from the nursing home and we are getting settled into the new place, so my reading should pick up again. I'm reading The Boys in the Boat. Great stuff.

4 comments:

Care said...

Good to hear the Chevalier is good because that last one I read was NOT as good as Pearl Earring.

Hey - did you hear that Brie Larson is going to make The Glass Castle movie? FYI

Susan Bybee said...

Care, that's great news about The Glass Castle!!!

raidergirl3 said...

I love Tracey Chevalier! Remarkable Creatures made me want to travel to see that beach where the fossils were found, and one of their houses is now a museum, I think. Some of Chevalier's are better than others, but I've never been disappointed. The Lady and the Unicorn is also a favourite of mine.
But did you read about her newest book, due out later in March? It has Johnny Appleseed in it! I had a Johnny Appleseed record when I was a kid, that I listened to over and over. I don't think JA is the main character, but he gives his seeds to some settlers, and it is their story. I am so pumped!

Susan Bybee said...

I think that I will make that my next Chevalier book. Thanks, Raidergirl!