Another month has flown by; here’s this month’s reading.
First book is from my list:
Emil and Hannah by Belinda Castles (and as a totally irrelevant aside, when I read the author’s name I start singing “We Got the Beat”) took me longer to read than I expected. Started last year but had to keep putting it down. Rise of Nazi Germany, WWII, treatment of unionists and Jews. Enough said. You know it is going to be sad. And this period of history makes me quite ill. So it was not the book’s fault that I faltered through this. Just such a horrendous period! Man’s inhumanity and all that.
When it came to the Dunera Boys story, I cried. Had to put the book down. We are inured, though not immune, to the horrors that the Nazis did to other humans. But when we read of the horrible treatment inflicted by the Allies to civilians, and to those who actually opposed Hitler, it just makes for uncomfortable reading. The Dunera story is, as Churchill said, deplorable.
The book is an epic, spanning decades and continents. Love, human dignity and human desire to make this world a better place win out. A great read.
When times are stressful, do you have a comfort read? A book you turn to for a bit of escape? One that is quick and easy to read?
One of my comfort reads is any of the Little House books. OK, they are written for little children, but that makes them so easy to read. I’ve read them all many times. My first set fell apart so I bought a new box set last year.
One rainy Sunday this month I read Little House in the Big Woods. I love the idea of self-sufficiency but know it is bloody hard work. And I love to fall asleep to the image of being snowed in – never having been snowed in, like never being self-sufficient, I can take the image without the pain of hard work.
Is there anyone who hasn’t read Laura Ingalls Wilder? Mmmm. The other Little House books are calling me but I need to get into my book club book and my Reading Down the House list. (The box set is like The Ring from the Hobbit – I can feel its power calling me, physically.)
And the last book this month was my book club book: Mr Wigg by Inga Simpson. What a lovely book! Reading it on a train trip this month, I had to put it down, as the tears started to well up.
What’s to love about this book? The gentle sadness. Mr Wigg’s love for his wife, his family, his grandchildren, his trees. The descriptions of fruit trees – I learnt a lot, and as you know, I love learning new things quite incidentally while reading fiction. The lyrical style. The descriptions of the creative force.
Just beautiful. A sweet tale. Jo, if you’re still dropping by, I think you will love this book.