Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Reading Challenge 2009 update

How are we all doing on the Reading Challenge 2009? I've gotten three down and can recommend each one.

Historical Fiction


Both of these books were very enjoyable.

The first was a very interesting braid of two stories of the Mormon church: one of Brigham Young's 19th wife and one of a 21st Century murder by a 19th wife. While I emphasize that this book is fiction, it did peak my interest to learn more about the Mormon beliefs and lifestyle. I do not recommend reading it as a friend of mine did and skip the 21st century story because it seems strange or confusing. You must read the whole book to truly appreciate the story that David Ebershoff has created here.

As for the second, I picked this one up on a whim. Confessions of a Pagan Nun looked to be a quick read and with moving, that was exactly what I was looking for. Suprisingly, I found this book not just to be good but great. The author did a wonderful job introducing to the main character as she a nun looked back over her life to explain how she came to her to Saint Brigit and more importantly if she the convent is the right place for a truly God fearing person? Raised a Druid, Gwyneve, has a deeply spiritual relationship with God and nature. Can a Druid become a nun? or are the two irreconcileable? Should they be reconciled? This is a short read that you will never forget.

A Biography

This book was a little farther off my regular reading diet. Kay Redfield Jamison heroically comes out about her own struggles with mental illness. A psychiatrist herself, Kay, exposes her own battle and I think in the process shows other that they not only can survive with manic-depression but possibly thrive. Although I wish she could have included more writing from her manic or depressed states, she does a brilliant job explaining that clearly I don't fully understand the illness to want such a thing or think that I could understand what it said even if such rantings did exist. I was left in awe of the life that Kay has lived dispite this debilitating disease and admire her for being willing to jeapordize it so that others may hear her tale.
What have you been reading?