Saturday, July 5, 2008

Summer Reads

My idea of a good vacation is one where I get a lot of reading done while sitting on the beach. No I have no tan- I spend my day underwater or in the shade but I still love sitting out on the beach chairs anyway.

Turn of the Screw- by Henry James. It's a psychological thriller from the turn of the century. It wasn't my favorite. Not enough actually happened for me. The descriptions are somewhat intriguing but I was disappointed by the ending.

Confessions of A Shopaholic- by Sophie Kinesella. This is part of a series. It's kind of funny although there were no laugh out loud moments. I don't think I've found a book that truly makes me laugh till I cry since I read 100 People Who Are Screwing Up America and Al Franken is #37. (It's absolutely hysterical.) The one thing I really liked about the book was reading all the shop names and tube stops because the book takes place in my best loved city- London.

Pope Joan- a historical novel based on the papacy of a woman who masqueraded as a man in 897. It's wonderful. Apparently there are over 500 references to Pope Joan in history although the Catholic Church denies her existence. Whether or not you agree that Pope Joan was an actual historical figure this book is still very interesting and a fun read.
The Screwtape Letters- by CS Lewis. This is the first book I have read by CS Lewis aside from the Chronicles of Narnia. I didn't like it quite as much as Narnia (but how could I since the Chronicles are deeply entrenched in my childhood memories?) but it was still good. It is basically letter from one of Satan's minions to another demon giving advice on bring souls to Satan. It has some interesting ideas on the path of sin and it's fun to read it from a demon's point of view.

Of Mice and Men- by John Steinbeck. The writing is wonderful, the descriptions intriguing. I love the way Steinbeck weaves a story- but in typical Steinbeck fashion it's terribly depressing and always drags me down a little. It's definitely worth reading- just wouldn't recommend it for a bad day.


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