I have read some great books recently, and so this month’s Things I Love is about them. What have you read and loved lately? I’d love to hear.
Catastrophic Happiness– I love, love, love, LOVED Catherine Newman’s new memoir. I was honored to review Catherine’s book for Brain, Child, and that review is here. I’m an unapologetic Catherine Newman fangirl and have been since, oh, the beginning of time. This book is just so wonderful. I’m giving it to everyone I know. I underlined basically the whole thing, and can’t possibly give you a favorite quote, so here are just two I adore: “I don’t always understand my own sadness. Me and my Achilles heart.” “Loss is ahead of us, behind us, woven into the very fabric of our happiness.”
In Twenty Years – Allison Winn Scotch’s new novel, out this summer, is flat-out marvelous. No doubt I related particularly intensely to this story because Allison’s protagonists and I are the same age, and the details in their college flashbacks are incredibly resonant for me. Beyond my personal identification, though, this is a poignant story about the formative friendships that stay with us, in ways difficult and wonderful, as we grow into adults. It’s about the people who stood next to us as we became who we are, and the ways that history is braided throughout the present.
The Abundance: Narrative Essays Old and New – Annie Dillard’s book of essays is as spectacular as you’d imagine. I love what Marilynne Robinson says (talk about one idol blurbing another) on the inside flyleaf: “Annie Dillard’s books are like comets, like celestial events that remind us that the reality we inhabit is itself a celestial event.”
Grace, Whit and I enjoyed a couple of new picture books recently, also:
Very Last First Time (Jan Andrews) – a reader recommended this book and I was worried it would make me incredibly sad because of the title alone. But we finally read it and it was marvelous. A bittersweet story, for sure, but also one that explores a world I didn’t know about. The story and the pictures are gorgeous.
Iggy Peck, Architect (Andrea Beaty) – we already love Rosie Revere, Engineer. In Beaty’s trademark lighthearted poetry and wonderful illustrations, this story talks about another resourceful, determined child. It is inspiring and fun. We are all looking forward to Ada Twist, Scientist.
I write these Things I Love posts approximately monthly. You can find them all here.
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