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Books and more books

May 25, 2011

Just a sampling of the books we have read recently:

I’m including myself in that we.  I’ve actually been making lots of time to read lately.  There’s nothing like studying World War II to get me to the library.  I’ve always been fascinated by the 1940s and in fact, I’m still going strong, even though we’ve moved on in our history.  I just finished Rumors of War, the first of five volumes in the Children of the Promise series by Dean Hughes.  I’m looking forward to picking up volume 2 at the library tomorrow.  I also finally enjoyed The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.  Seastar recommended it to me, but thought I’d probably already read it.  (I actually hadn’t, as the year it was on everyone’s must-read list, I was into medieval literature.  I’m never reading what everyone else is!)

I really love true accounts of the war though and really liked these three:

  • A Distant Prayer chronicles Joseph Banks’ experience as a B-17 crew member who went down over northeastern Germany on his 49th combat mission, ended up in a POW camp, and miraculously survived a forced march to the southwestern front where he escaped and was picked up by Allied forces.
  • We Were Not Alone was about an LDS family’s life in Berlin through the War, primarily told through the youngest daughter’s eyes.
  • Operation Mincemeat:  Sooner or later, I always wind up reading about espionage during the war.  I love spy stories and especially loved this one about how the British used “a dead man and a bizarre plan” to deceive the Nazis into expecting an invasion in Greece rather than in Sicily in 1943.  It was fascinating reading and remarkably funny as well.  DH would come to bed and want to know why I was laughing so hard, and I’d read him the best paragraphs.
I also enjoyed The Berlin Candy Bomber, Gail Halvorsen’s story of his life and experiences as “Uncle Wiggly Wings” during the Berlin Airlift, and later as the commander at Tempelhof in Berlin.  I read Candy Bomber by Michael O. Tunnell to the boys which was a fantastic children’s nonfiction treatment of the same subject.

Next on my to-read list is The Cello Suites by Eric Siblin.

A finally finished The Lord of the Rings at the end of March and has been flying through books ever since.  He said that everything is easy after LOTR.  I would have to agree with that assessment.  Here are some of his recent reads:
  • The Mysterious Benedict Society 
  • The Call of the Wild and White Fang by Jack London 
  • The Lost World by Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Ranger’s Apprentice Books 4 andby John Flanagan
  • The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan
  • The Clockwork Three by Matthew J. Kirby
  • Holes by Louis Sachar

Currently he’s on the second Mysterious Benedict Society and he’s been rereading Harry Potter as well because C’s been going through them.  C has read the first five volumes as well as the Mysterious Benedict Society, Ranger’s Apprentice 1-3, and The Sinking of the Bismarck by William L. Shirer, along with countless short historical fiction books about World War II.  It’s very hard to keep him supplied with reading material.

We continue to listen to books in the car as well.  We really enjoyed Gone-Away Lake, a 1957 Newbury Honor book and its sequel, Return to Gone-Away.

Then we listened to The Hobbit, which we all loved.  (I’m really dreading what Peter Jackson will do with the spider scene in the upcoming movie though.  I’d forgotten about that part since I last read it.)

Now we’re going through The Chronicles of Narnia again because D couldn’t remember them from the last time we read them.  Admittedly he was only two, so we decided to read them again and we’re all thoroughly enjoying them.  We began with The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (LWW) rather than The Magician’s Nephew because I think one should always experience Narnia first with the Pevensie children, even though chronologically speaking, it’s not the first Narnia book.  I’m never sure where to put The Horse and His Boy though.  It’s always strange to read it after the end of LWW.  Now that I think about it, we should have inserted it into LWW before they go back through the wardrobe into 1940s England.  But we didn’t, and now we’re through Prince Caspian and almost through The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.  Oh well.  Seeing how E is only 16 months old, I’m sure it won’t be our last trip through Narnia and we’ll love it yet again down the road.  It’s on our must-read classics list.

So, what are you currently reading and what order do you read Narnia in?

2 Comments leave one →
  1. May 26, 2011 11:35 am

    That looks like a lot of fun! I was looking at my list of books I’ve read this year, and thinking it’s looking a little thin. I ought to find something to read, just for fun. And I should consider finishing something… that would help!

  2. May 26, 2011 8:44 pm

    Oh I love Holes and The Lost World and the Hobbit. I have never heard of the candy bomber and need to add that book to my list. I have to admit I have only ever read The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe. I did watch the old BBC version of the books when they were on PBS way back in the early 90’s and loved the stories. Don’t know why I haven’t read the other books. Those go on my to read list too. Ack! its getting out of control.

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