Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Summer Reading List

     On the other side of Labor Day, it feels like summer should be over.  My kids have been in school for three weeks so our collective Summer Vacation ended a while ago.  It flew by far too quickly, of course.  I expected living in a hotel for the summer would slow our summer down.  The situation has made it easier for the kids to reach out and touch each other, breathe on each other, look at each other...but routines and getting up early still came too quickly.

     I have been out of school for quite a while but I still operate under the illusion that I will have more time to read during the summer and feel an obligation like I should be reading over the summer.  My TBR list grows but I don't accomplish half of the reading I planned.  I did manage to fit in a few!

     Tiger Hunting by Tracy Million Simmons had been sitting on my shelf for far too long.  I "met" Tracy years ago, online, as part of a Kansas writers' forum back when I was one of those.  I purchased a copy of her book as soon as it was available.  I don't know why I waited so long to open it up but I brought it along on our flight in July.  It was the perfect time to read her story.  Along with searching for a white tiger in Kansas, her book is about finding your lost voice.  I finished her book as we were landing in New Orleans which was exactly where I'd left mine.  I started a new story while we were there but hers is finished and lovely and has circus folk.  Go take a look!

     Someone Else's Love Story, by Joshilyn Jackson, is her best yet.  Yes.  I know.  If you've read this blog for a while, you know that I say that each time I pick up her latest book.  It's still true.  If you have read her books, you know what I mean. If you haven't read any of her books, are not sure where to start or if you aren't sure you have the time to commit to another whole novel right now, you are in luck!  Two of the main characters in SELS also have parts in a separate short story, my own miraculous.  You can get the e-book version for ninety-nine cents.  Go read it now.  You will then purchase Someone Else's Love Story.  It's like trying to eat one potato chip.  Once you get a taste, you will not be able to stop and you will have to read more about Shandi and her extraordinary son, Natty.    I have a vicarious crush on Walcott.

     The Rent Collector is a book I've read over a period of many months.  This doesn't sound encouraging as you're looking for a book that you can't put down and I'm admitting I did.  Lessons build upon each other however and this story was no less powerful read a few chapters at a time versus all at once.  We've all had countless vicarious journeys as we read to "escape."  This story is an excellent reminder of how learning to read is a true means of escape for someone who can't, otherwise.  Camron Wright has set beautiful stories, some familiar, amidst the stinging smoke of a trash dump in Cambodia.  Well worth the read.

     How to Have a New Kid by Friday.  You've heard of this one.  If you need it, you've probably already read it.  If you haven't, it's stuff you already know, but written in a step format so you can read a little each day and put it all together at the end.  (Of course, this is the one I read in one two-hour sitting).   I'm guilty of giving too many choices and too many chances so my own mom recommended this one to me too many times.  If you have the time, it has plenty of good reminders.  Otherwise, say what you mean, once and mean it.

     It is a "teacher in-service" day which means my kids have today off, giving them a nice four-day weekend to recover from the last three full weeks of school.  Looks like rain.  Maybe I'll get some writing in.  I have to, as that is the only way I feel like I've earned time to read.  I said I wasn't bringing many to the hotel but I still have a decent stack waiting to be opened.  Next on the pile is The Invention of Wings!  What are you reading this month?