Tuesday, May 5, 2020

I read TWO non-fiction books? And a Stephen King book?

Before I get to my recent reading, I just want to take a moment here to thank all the doctors, nurses, hospital staffs, essential workers, first responders, teachers, parents and whoever I may have missed for all the time, energy, love, and work they are putting in to help get us through this virus.  I am in total awe of each and every one of them.  And I honor and respect their work by staying home as much as possible, and always, always wearing a mask when I do have to go out. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Well, it has been a time for reading, hasn't it?  In some ways, I feel like I'm not reading anymore or less than usual, but then I go on a reading spree.  It is all about having a good book to read, for me at least!  Like the three books I am telling you about today!

I finished reading Untamed by Glennon Doyle and loved it.  It is just short essays on how we view our own lives, but extremely powerful words.  She is a very good writer, in the league of Anne Lamott, which is high praise from me.


Her chapter on Deliveries was about grief (of all different kinds).  It spoke to me deeply, yet simply.  "Grief shatters."  Aren't we all experiencing grief right now?  Longing for the world to go back to how it was, not having to hear the nightly death numbers (like listening to the daily death counts on the news each night during the Vietnam War)? Missing our families, our friends, our neighbors? Going out to eat or shop or to the movies?  Glennon talks about how if you let yourself shatter, then you can pick up the pieces and become a new person.  Will we ever be the same person again when this plague ends, or after someone you love dies?  No. You will be a different person.  That can be a good thing, depending on how you let yourself grieve and accept.

The other non-fiction book that I read was When Time Stopped-A Memoir of My Father's War and What Remains by Ariana Neumann.  Something about this book really grabbed me and I sped through it in two days.  Ariana was born and raised in Venezuela.  Her father was considerably older than her mother.  Her father would never talk about his past, so, of course, when Ariana was a child she took it upon herself to become a detective!  She found some interesting things one day in her father's box. He would not discuss it and she never saw the box again.

When Time Stopped: A Memoir of My Father's War and What Remains

After Ariana's father's death, she received her father's box, but then it was full of papers, letters, cards, etc.  She then undertook the journey she had always dreamed of -discovering who her father really was.

This book is incredibly researched.  The author spent years finding family members that she had never heard of, and who would add immensely to her journey of discovery. I really was fascinated with the book.  Although the book was about finding her father, I wish that the author would have shared a bit about how she actually felt about all that she learned. She did somewhat, but, I guess the therapist in me, wanted to know more!

And I also read The Outsider by Stephen King.  I couldn't resist!  I am in no way a fan of horror, but I love his writing.  I would rank him as one of the best writers I have read.  There are books of his that I won't go near, but those that I have read have been superbly written.
The Outsider

This is a story that begins with the murder of a young boy and all evidence led to the small town's much-loved coach and teacher.  However, there was also evidence to prove that the coach was in a different town during the murder.

It's hard to write any more about the book because I don't want to give anything away! It's just a good mystery that goes all over the place, literally.