I’ve been needing lite entertainments. No heavy movies where I would cry in empathy. Little TV as most of the good stuff this week has been preempted by the elections. No heavy books either; they would allow let me drift away. Or I couldn’t pick them up.
Often I’ve been sitting in bed with my left arm elevated. Pillows under my arm, pillows behind my back, and pillows on a lap tray to bring whatever book I’m reading up to a good height. The mornings have been cold, simply wonderfully chilly. Under the pillows, there are quilts…layers of them. Behind the piles of detritus are more piles of books on top of a bookcase.
Sandwiched in the middle is me.
Books from Costco are wonderful things. And too, I’ve been bringing books home from the store to read. Quite a pile has accumulated, and this was the chance to read them. My reading had grown stale, and this was a chance to also discover new authors. I was delighted in Val McDermid’s writing and characters. David Rosenfelt gave me a good guy protagonist that was delightful as well as human. Best of all, ABE Books not only has free shipping this month, but in some cases offers half price books. That’s for me.
Books whose characters stifle, bore, or leave my imagination cold can go right back to the store to be sold.
Then there’s Anne Morrow Lindbergh. I own all her books, and I have read them many times. I even dropped Hour of Gold, Hour of Lead in the bathtub once. Not so Gift from the Sea. Sitting on my sunny bed by the sea, I’ve been reading a little of it every day. Now, knowing much of her history, the infidelities and abuse from her husband, the kidnapping and killing of her first child, her affair in the fifties, and her long decline into death so movingly documented by her daughter Reeve, I find the book’s words and context easier to understand.
I found much of her thinking still applicable today. No wonder the book continues to be a best seller. First editions are going for a thousand dollars, yet you can buy a dog eared, drawn in copy for a buck. If you want something to poke your own thinking, take a moment to reread a Gift from the Sea.