I read a lot of books, it’s my favourite way to wind down in the evenings and to occupy myself at the beach when I’m not playing in the water with my girls. I read some really good books (and some duds but I’m only sharing the good ones here) this last month and here are my quick takes on them. Head over to Modern Mrs. Darcy for many titles and recommendations!
Secrets of a Charmed Life by Susan Meissner
I’ve read a lot of books set in England during WW2 and several of those books have dealt with the stories of the London evacuees. This book starts in modern England where a history student just needs to interview one person for her paper but the story she is told is so much more then just a story for a good grade. From leaving London during the bombing with her little sister to taking another girl’s name to designing bridal gowns and dreaming of a much bigger life then that of her single mom’s life, Isabel shares her regrets, fears and tremendous courage. This story had me crying and staying up way past my bedtime to see if the two sisters ever found the happy ever after they dreamed of. It’s a story set in decades past but it’s themes are transcendent for all time.
The Fringe Hours by Jessica Turner
Fringe hours – those moments of time in the corners of the day wherein you do what makes your life beautiful. Jessica interviewed over 2000 women for the writing of this book and it is full of their stories plus plenty of personal experience from Jessica’s own life. I’m pretty good at self care but this book went above and beyond self care into the how, why, when and what of personal time. It’s a kick in the pants, an encouragement from a good friend and has me thinking of the care and keeping of myself on a much different level.
Inherit Midnight by Kate Kae Myers
I don’t read a lot of YA fiction but this was a super fun read. There is a large inheritance but in order for it to be given, the family must participate in a round the world scavenger hunt to understand where and how the money had been earned. There’s one of every kind in this family, a sweet romance and lots of fast-paced action. Perfect for an all day beach read.
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas
After reading some meh books, I turned to this old favourite. I’ve read more times then I remember and each time I marvel at the story-telling, details and keeping all the characters straight over a timeline of thirty years. It’s a story of one man who was wrongfully accused and left to die in a prison. It’s a story of perservance, of love and bitter hate and how the smallest act of either of those emotions can have the greatest consequence on so many lives.
When I was ten, I requested a Laura Ingalls birthday. We dressed up, cooked all the food from the Little House cookbook and played only games that Laura would have played. Twenty years later, I’m still a big fan of the Ingalls, in awe of Ma and the adventures she undertook with her clan and still consider these books a needful classic on everyone’s shelf. Wendy McClure was a lot like me except she undertook the experiences as an adult, reading the books, making the recipes (including making butter in a jar and grinding wheat by hand) and then visiting all the sites ever associated with Laura and her family. It’s part memoir and part a re-telling of a beloved story. The book seems to peter out towards the end as her list of places to visit ends, a bittersweet tale of the fact that non of us can ever really re-live the books we grew up with.
We’re moving in a few weeks, my house is filled with boxes- both filled and empty, so obviously I need book recommendations, what have you loved this summer?