Northern Reading

My last two books took place in the north.  Mayflower obviously took place in Plymouth, and is a non-fiction account of the Pilgrims and their struggles.  I loved the first half or so, but then it bogged down to the point I couldn’t finish it.  I mean, I know how the story ends, and frankly, I got tired of the same power-hungry men making the same mistakes over and over, generation after generation!

On Father’s Day, the Knight’s aunt had us go through a box of books she was giving away.  I picked up a couple, and the first I read was Fall on Your Knees.   It takes place in Nova Scotia, on Cape Breton Island.  I know so little about that part of the world that I didn’t know it was coal country, as is the southwestern part of my own state.   It’s not an easy book to read, but the characters are so well crafted that I just had to see it through to the  end.  Some of you know I struggle with anything other than a happy ending, and while there were precious few happy sentences in this book, the ending was satisfying.  If you don’t mind a dark look at human nature, you might find this a compelling read.

I’ve already started another book, The Lost Summer of Louisa May Alcott, which also happens to take place in New England, in Wapole New Hampshire.  It’s just what I wanted to read next; something simple and almost silly.   While I’m enjoying it, I’m rather sure Ms. Alcott has turned over in her grave.   The characters are rather simplistic and, well… silly.  They’re all young adults, but I’ve read plenty of books about characters of all sorts of ages that didn’t feel so … much like a young adult novel.   I’m only a third or so into it, so we’ll see how I like it at the end.

What are you reading?


15 comments on “Northern Reading

  1. Oh well, all things considered, silly might not be such a bad choice right now! I meant to start Maisie Dobbs today, but somehow grabbed Nights of Rain and Stars by Maeve Binchy instead. One chapter in is too soon to say anything yet.

  2. gMarie says:

    I’m reading the Tea Shop Mysteries. I’m on the second one and enjoying it. I’m also reading patterns and trying to see if they are adaptable to bears. g

  3. AlisonH says:

    Your blog, at the moment. (Heh.)

  4. Blond Duck says:

    I read a really good book the other day–Garden Spells and The Girl Who Chased the Moon.

  5. Sue says:

    I had the same experience with Mayflower. I read about the first half and quit.

    I’m currently reading Handle With Care by Jodi Picoult. It’s not a happy book, so don’t grab it if you’re feeling down, but it’s very well written.

  6. Marjie says:

    Holy cow! I had ancestors who came from Cape Breton Island. Who’d have thought a book would be set there?

  7. Barbara S. says:

    “Pillars of the Earth” (Ken Follett), which is most amazing! Then I need to read “Building a Home With My Husband” as I absolutely loved “Riding the Bus With my Sister” by the same author (Rachel Simon). Have you read “Water For Elephants”? (Sara Gruen).

  8. Nichole says:

    I’m glad you’re enjoying that one… silly as it is! They sent 2 copies so I have another laying around, but doubt I’ll get to it anytime soon!

  9. grace says:

    I finished Casting Off by Nicole Dickson last week—takes place in a western island off Ireland and was fantastic, now I am on book 3 of Sally Goldbaums Knitter mysteries called Moon Spinners, and its compelling, I have enjoyed all of her books but she seriously needs a good editor some of the mistakes are inexcusable!!! After this I have the Lacemakers of Glenmara, some Maggie Sefton and some quilt series starting with A Single Thread.

  10. Kathy says:

    I too am visiting the north in my current book. But it’s the northern part of another continent, Europe. Sweden to be exact. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson is keeping me occupied.

  11. Amy Darsie says:

    The other day when I went to the library, and all the books that I wanted to read were checked out. So I browsed the fiction section, and The Witch Doctor’s Wife caught my eye. Its the story of a missionary woman who travels alone to the Congo in the 1950’s, loosely based on the author’s experiences there. So far its pretty good. Then today, I got a call that my hold request for Her Fearful Symmetry was in, so I dove right into that novel. It is by the same author who wrote The Time Traveler’s Wife (another AMAZING book.)

  12. Susan says:

    A Breath of Snow and Ashes
    Lover Unbound
    Every dog training book I can find!!!

  13. Barbara says:

    I just started Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M. by Sam Wasson and it’s really a fun read.

  14. Interesting to hear your thoughts on Fall On Your Knees. I had a hard time getting through it, but not because of the subject matter. I found the story a tad slow in the middle.

    P.S. I just looked up my review here:

  15. […] Lost Summer I finished reading The Lost Summer…   The only thing I can add is that it did finally jump into the fictionalized version of Ms. […]

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