What are you reading now?

One week from today we’re off to visit Matt’s parents in Florida for spring break.  They children’s enthusiasm is unbridled, their energy for imagining what they’ll do with their grandparents running wild.  Matt is fired up to play golf every day.  Me, I’m excited to do some reading.  I’m working my way through a re-read of Laurie Colwin’s entire oeuvre, with only one to go.  When I observe my stack I see I’ve circled from a novel phase back to memoir.  Here’s what is coming up:

  • Home Cooking – Laurie Colwin
  • Virgin Time – Patricia Hampl
  • Double Time – Jane Roper (an ARC of my friend’s memoir, which I can’t wait to read)
  • Bread of Angels – Stephanie Saldana
  • An American Childhood – Annie Dillard (can’t believe I’ve never read this)

What are you reading?  What books have you loved lately?  What should I bring to Florida?  I can’t wait to hear.

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  1. Posted March 6, 2012 at 5:05 am | Permalink

    My stack is kind of serious these days (thanks to a very focused book group in Jerusalem!)
    I Shall Not Hate: A Gaza Doctor’s Journey
    The Finkler Question
    Belonging: Home Away from Home

    I’m also going to try to get through American Pastoral.

    Tell me what you think of An American Childhood. I wrote my college admissions essay on it!

  2. Anne
    Posted March 6, 2012 at 6:37 am | Permalink

    I just finished Slow Motion by Dani Shapiro. You introduced me to her with your review of Devotion, which I adored. I also loved Slow Motion and the insight into her earlier life. Thanks for the recommendations.

    I’m also reading The End of Illness by Agus. It’s nonfiction, by a highly renowned cancer doctor. It’s very interesting.

  3. Amy
    Posted March 6, 2012 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    My list is light these days! 50 shades of grey (delicious) and the Paris wife.

  4. Posted March 6, 2012 at 7:24 am | Permalink

    Bringing Up Bebe. The Sisters from Hardscrabble Bay. Finished these two books in two weeks which is exceedingly rare for me these days. Getting ready to dig into Memory Wall, Anthony Doerr’s new-ish book. I hear Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese is excellent.

  5. Posted March 6, 2012 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    Oh, I hear Pam Houston’s new novel — can’t remember the name — is great, too.

  6. Posted March 6, 2012 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    Every Parent should learn the lesson we learned before bad things happen. The book “Then She Ran” just came out and I think it could open some eyes

  7. Posted March 6, 2012 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    I loved Bread of Angels. Beautiful. And along similar lines, Day of Honey is wonderful too.

    I’m working my way through The Table Comes First, Adam Gopnik’s book on food, and some fluffy young adult stuff. Just read Unbroken for book club and loved it. And Lauren Winner’s new memoir, Still, is fantastic. (Oh, and on the fiction side, I loved The Baker’s Daughter by Sarah McCoy.)

    Love that BSC book Grace is reading!

  8. Posted March 6, 2012 at 8:40 am | Permalink

    p.s. that might be my favorite photo ever of you three. Is there room in that bed and an extra book for me?

    admin Reply:

    There is definitely room and I think you know there are, always, books galore!

  9. Posted March 6, 2012 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    I cannot begin to tell you how much I love that photo of you and the children!! What a treasure!! As far as books, you’ve probably already read it, but I just picked up and can’t put down, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Annie Barrows and Mary Ann Shaffer. Happy reading and travels!! XO Kasey

  10. Posted March 6, 2012 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    We are also going to Florida in two weeks. But funny, our vacations (I’m just now starting to call them that, and its still questionable. I always, when kids are along, call them Change of Locations) – are not times for me to catch up on reading. Especially if my husband would be golfing every day. Good for you.

    I read the Paris Wife and Loving Frank back to back. i enjoyed both but shouldn’t have read them back to back because now they merge together in my mind.

    Funny that you posted this because I just finished the Hunger Games two nights ago and am having withdrawals. I searched your reading list, thinking I haven’t seen a book review in a while here. Last night I was reading one of my daughter’s books – something like The Name of this Book is Secret. I am also in the middle of reading Tom Sawyer to my son and it is really fun – reminds me of being a kid and my son is enjoying it immensely.

  11. Kim
    Posted March 6, 2012 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    Just read What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarity and The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh. I really enjoyed both! I am about to read The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton,which friends have raved about.

  12. Posted March 6, 2012 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Hi Linds!

    I’m reading _Let the Great World Spin_ by Colum McCann and also _A Wrinkle in Time_ by Madeline L’Engle (it’s the 50yr anniversary!) before handing it off to my 8yr old. I’ve been loving having my own novel going (just finished _Driftless_ by David Rhodes and _State of Wonder_ by Ann Patchett) while reading other great books with my kids (we’ve been on a Roald Dahl kick). It is so fun to re-read great, well-written kids’ books as an adult.

    Have a great trip!

  13. Carey
    Posted March 6, 2012 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    An American Childhood is one of the great all-time memoirs….beautiful. Dillard’s other work hasn’t resonated as much with me, but this one remains a favorite. Want to hear how you like it! I just finished another novel by Jennifer Haigh, Mrs. Kimble, which I recommend along with two others by her: Faith, and The Condition.

  14. Posted March 6, 2012 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    OH yes, State of Wonder and Let the Great World Spin are both excellent!

  15. Posted March 6, 2012 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    I LOVE this photo!!! My book reading is still rather sad. I am STILL reading Anatomy of the Spirit. And Spirit Junkie by Gabrielle Bernstein. I finally ditched you know what and now I need another book … I want a great novel – any recommendations for me? Have you read State of Wonder yet? Best book I have read in ages …

  16. Posted March 6, 2012 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    Thanks so much for the shout-out!! I hope you like my book. (And if you don’t, don’t tell me. Heh.)

    I’m reading “Cinderella Ate my Daughter” and “David Copperfield.” Interesting combo, no?

    Have a wonderful, wonderful trip. I’m so jealous.

  17. Posted March 6, 2012 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    Love the photo, and can think of nothing better than revisiting every word Laurie Colwin ever wrote. She is an all-time favorite of mine. If you’ve never read James Salter, perhaps this is your moment: I re-read Light Years last year for the fourth time, and it only got better. As for new, I just came home from the bookstore with Carol Anshaw’s Carry the One; have loved everything else she’s ever written. Also, next on my list, This Lovely Life. Oh, and since you’re about to read an American Childhood, what about One Writer’s Beginnings? Am off to Florida next week with our guys, too, for what may be our last all-together spring break ever.

  18. Posted March 6, 2012 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    on the library waitlist for these memoirs…
    • some assembly required by anne lamott
    • unorthodox by deborah feldman

    and if you return to novels…always love books by marisa de los santos, paulo coelho, and isabel allende.

    safe travels and happy adventures to you and the family. would love to meet in person someday during one of your florida trips.

  19. Jen
    Posted March 7, 2012 at 12:26 am | Permalink

    I have been very moved over the past weeks by Momma Zen by Karen Maezen Miller. Wonderful and articulate meditations on the everyday of being a mother. I am a new mother and it’s more targeted to that phase, but still relevant far beyond that.

  20. Ari
    Posted March 7, 2012 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    “A thousand splendid suns” by Khaled Hosseini. I liked it. It’s a sad story. But it’s an eye opening story.
    “Kite Runner” is another good novel by him.

  21. Kimberly Scott
    Posted March 7, 2012 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    I just finished What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, a memoir about long distance running and writing by Haruki Marukami. I checked it out from the library, and therefore, had to handwrite the passages I loved in my journal. As an over zealous highlighter, this practice typically keeps me pretty honest. However, there were so many passages I loved it took me more than an hour yesterday to transcribe them all. In any event, it is a quick, but powerful read, and as a runner and a writer, I thought you might enjoy it.

  22. Posted March 7, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

    Slogging through Middlemarch, but picked up Rosamund Lupton’s Sister for my easy reading on my trip. Loved it- sort of a mystery, but interesting form (a letter to her missing sister) and really great writing from a debut novelist. Her rendering of the sister relationship is quite beautiful. Also reading Claire Dederer’s Poser on the side (which I think you’ve read?).

    On my want to read list (abridged version):
    Wild- Cheryl Strayed
    The Vanishers- Heidi Julavits
    House of Stone- Amber Dermont
    Arcadia- Lauren Groff (not out yet)
    Song of Achilles- Madeline Miller
    Other People We Married- Emma Straub
    Theory of Small Earthquakes- Meredith Maren
    Stay Awake- Dan Chaon
    Orphan Master’s Son- Adam Johnson
    American Dervish- Ayad Akhtar
    Balzac’s Omelette- A. Muhlstein
    House of Prayer No. 2- Mark Richard

    That’s just the start of it. 🙂 Enjoy your vacation!!!

  23. Posted March 9, 2012 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for this, the opportunity to thank a Momma Zen reader, Jen! I’ve just finished The Book of Mormon Girl, I’m having fun with the inventive first-time YA novel, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, and losing myself in my brilliant friend Dan Barden’s brand new noir masterpiece, The Next Right Thing.