September 10th, 2011

Dead Dog Cat

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This week, I finished reading a book on my electronic reader, the Ematic. It was Furies of Calderon, a fantasy novel by Jim Butcher that I found very readable. The novel caught me, gave me likeable characters and villains to hate, and good action. I'm looking now for the next book of the saga.
Dead Dog Cat

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Things being slow and comfortable today, I just finished reading another Roman Empire mystery by David Wishart, called In At the Death. Strange doings need explanation, and the protagonist falls into plots and murders. Good read.
amy poehler

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27. Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand - Really couldn't get into this, tooooo dense for me.

28. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote - Pretty good read, I really like how he made a sort of novel out of a true event. The story is just so crazy and even more crazy because it actually happened. Lots of real-life twists.
-sg1headwall

Books 31 - 40.

31. Innes - The Pauper's Cookbook (the older version)
Got this from my parents. Although there are some recipes I will never make, the book is still pretty useful :)

32. Yoshimoto - The Lake (library book)
I liked this, but not enough to want to own my own copy. Felt quite minimalist in its moods.

33. Jeffers - Feel The Fear And Do It Anyway
Gathered quite a few useful tips. :)

34. Ogura - Letters From The End Of The World: A Firsthand Account Of The Bombing Of Hiroshima
A very good book in that I learned more of how people there coped, what issues there were also after the bombing time, and the viewpoint gripped my emotions.

35. Anderson - Tau Zero
Surprisingly good, I liked it

36. Brother John Of Taizé - At The Wellspring: Jesus And The Samaritan Woman (Finnish translation)(library book)
Learned again a lot about the background stuff and it dug deeper also on what was said, gained a lot of insight, so well worth the read.

37. Grant - The New Vegan: Fresh And Exciting Recipes For A Healthy Lifestyle
Lots of good recipes, though no photos. :9

38. Ballard - The Atrocity Exhibition
Easier read than "Crash", and it felt like a complicated movie, which was nice.

39. Thoreau - Walden & Civil Disobedience
Although I know that his and my opinions wouldn't match (on things like architecture, importance of railroads, good vegetarian diet and certain level of booksnobbery - which is partly because of the lack of good book tranlations at the time), it was stil a good read and I got some good points out of it.

40. Bauby - The Diving-Bell And The Butterfly (Finnish translation)
A good experience in reading about the locked-in syndrome, though in the end I got the feeling that there didn't seem to be enough about how it was. Gave this away.
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#91 The Sunlight on the Garden - Elizabeth Speller (2006)

In 1880, Ada Curtis bore Gerald Howard the first of several illegitimate children. Ada was a housemaid, the daughter of a Lincolnshire butcher. Gerald was her employer and the son of a once-grand family now obsessed with its own threadbare nobility. They thereby sent their descendants tumbling chaotically into the twentieth century. More than a century later, inspired by the stories, re-inventions and half-truths in her family's past, Elizabeth Speller - Gerald and Ada's great-granddaughter - set out to trace the criss-crossing lines of their history. As she herself recovered from a mental breakdown, she began to wonder if that history offered any explanation of what had happened in her own life. The search brings vividly to life the passions and hopes of four generations, amid tales of wealth inherited and lost, eccentricity, sexual indiscretion and madness. Ultimately, this book will remain in the memory as a beautifully realised sequence of portraits of mothers and daughters.

Having read Elizabeth Speller's excellent novel "The Return of Captain John Emmett" I looked forward to reading this memoir of her family. I was not to be disappointed, it is a beautifully written, poignant memoir.
To read "The Sunlight in the Garden" is to clamber upon a magic carpet, which then swoops and dives through the decades and back again. This non chronological narrative works wonderfully well. The mothers and daughters of Elizabeth Speller's family are slowly and truthfully revealed to us, in all their fragility. Through wars, divorce and madness, these memorable women's voices resonate. Elizabeth Speller's family is fascinating and complex - and in this fairly slim volume (240 pages) we are treated to a host of family anecdotes, secrets and fears. I was fascinated by the account of Elizabeth's school days and her time living in Berlin. The story of her Elizabeth's grandmother, her manic-depression, and service alongside the Polish forces in Scotland during WW2, will also remain with me I think. I loved every page of this beautifully written book.