August 04, 2011
Speaking of Books
Since books and music are two of my dearest loves, it is a joy to discuss books with people who share an interest in reading. Terri wrote about reading on her blog Into The Mystic and her post inspired Rock Chef to write about reading on his blog The Spartan Rock Chef. Several of my regular readers posted about books since these two posts and I have been thinking of my books all along. Now I share some with you.
Some of my favorite books have been about subjects unfamiliar to me. For instance, one favorite book is "The Greatest Game Ever Played" by Mark Frost. The book about golfing could be a school textbook; however, the book is not a dull textbook. It has a thorough Index and follows the golf careers of Harry Vardon and Francis Ouimet with the results of extensive research and written so well that the reader is transformed to that era throughout the book. Students could learn much about determination and grit and dedication as well as cash in on the excellent writing ability of the author. Hubby and I each read the book and both liked it so much we rented the DVD. It doesn't work well to read a book and then see the movie; usually it means disappointment that some fun items were left out of the movie. Especially a book with so much history and information as The Greatest Game Ever Played. But the movie's passion and love of the game of golf brought the book to life.
Laura Hillenbrand's "Seabiscuit" taught me about horse racing in such detail that I never would have thought possible. The book held my interest every page and I neglected all else until I finished the book. This book is a keeper in our home. I have some absolute favorite books, some I have carried around from young adulthood, and "Seabiscuit" has joined that elite group. I have never been to a horse race in person, but when I was living alone the years before I met my hubby, I discovered the beauty of horse racing on my large plasma screen on the wall. Yes, I used to be one those and it was right before I met James that I stopped watching TV news and didn't turn the TV on every day. I was fascinated to see the beautiful colors and movement of the horses and the jockeys that were sometimes so close I could reach out and touch them. A couple years later I read "Seabiscuit", one of the best written and most interesting books for adventurous readers with a heart for real life.
A few years ago my older daughter gifted me with "One Thousand White Women" by Jim Fergus. I was captivated from the first page and limp as a noodle when I finished. Because I am interested in Native American culture, the added benefit was obvious. But the deep emotions of the book were a surprise to me and instead of being a downer, it was exhilarating. I quote Winston Groom, author of Forrest Gump:
"Jim Fergus knows his country in a way that's evocative of Dee Brown and all the other great writers of the American West and its native peoples. But One Thousand White Women is more than a chronicle of the old west. It's a superb tale of sorrow, suspense, exultation, and triumph that leaves the reader waiting to turn the page and wonderfully wrung out at the end."
"The Weeping Chamber" by Sigmund Brouwer tells a story that for me depicts Jesus the Messiah as people living in that time would have seen him. The book is in fact, about two men, one known as The Teacher and another looking for a miracle. Sigmund Brouwer is not a historian. The book "The Weeping Chamber" is a novel.
My hubby introduced Tony Hillerman's books to me in the first month of our courting. We have all of Hillerman's books on our shelves. Joe Leaphorn and Jim Chee are now my friends, calming me with the mysteries these Navajo Tribal Policemen solve on the reservation. I say calming me because Hillerman's style is simple and clean; easy reading that incorporates native customs and traditions.
Reading is something I do throughout every day. I always have. If I had an appointment, I carried the current book with me and would disappear into what I was reading while waiting. I had audio books in the car that would carry me away from the traffic jams in California. Books have been my friends since I was four years old. One book I have had since then. It is too old and brittle to read but it is still with me.
Posted by CiCi