Welcome to my weekly Saturday feature here at Erin Reads, where I highlight new books that have entered my life, what I’ve been reading, and what’s happened on Erin Reads over the past week.
I went a little used-book crazy this past week. Between my library and the Half Price Books clearance section, I managed to acquire five new-to-me books, each for $2 or less. Here they are:
From the top down (click titles for GoodReads summaries):
- The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell: No review I’ve ever read has quite managed to to make me understand this book’s plot. But! I’ve had so many people whose opinions I trust tell me they loved The Sparrow that, for $1, I couldn’t pass it up.
- The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman: Look at me, buying nonfiction! I’ve been told The Spirit Catches You an You Fall Down is absolutely fascinating. It tells of the clash between the medical and Hmong communities over how to treat a baby girl who suffers from seizures.
- Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides: I had planned to listen to Middlesex on audio, but then I found this used copy making eyes at me from its spot on the library’s for-sale shelf. It follows a Greek American family through three generations and has a wonderful opening line:
“I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day in January of 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of 1974.”
- The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss: I’m rather picky about which fantasy novels I’ll read, but The Name of the Wind comes very highly recommended by someone who’s as picky about her fantasy as I am. It’s the first (and only, to date) in the Kingkiller series. That’s all I know about it!
- Innocent Traitor by Alison Weir: This one is narrated by 15-year-old Lady Jane Grey, great-niece of King Henry VIII. I’ve not yet read Alison Weir, but I love good historical fiction and am looking forward to digging into Innocent Traitor!
Have you read any of these? Have I made sound choices?
Read This Week
As October transitioned into November, I finished up last month’s books and started on some new projects. I finished The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa for my book group and wrapped up Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett on audio. I also read, in a day, the newest from Dennis Lehane, Moonlight Mile.
The rest of the week was taken up by two bigger projects. First, I’m hoping to finish Kate Morton’s The Distant Hours by its release date on Tuesday. I think I’ll make it! It’s pushing 700 pages, but I have thoroughly enjoyed what I’ve read so far and can’t wait to review it. I also started–tentatively!–listening to The Odyssey, read by Ian McKellen (how cool is that?) for Trish’s readalong. I was beyond hesitant to join, because I hated slogging through The Odyssey in college, but Trish suggested giving the audiobook a chance. I’ve made it through the first few books, and I am shocked to admit that I am actually enjoying it! Woo hoo!
Erin Reads Recap
- I started the week with a Sunday Salon post in which I looked at my October reading stats. It’s the first time I’ve paid attention so carefully to what I’ve read, so I had fun playing with the numbers. I also gave a preview as to what I’m books planning to tackle in November.
- On Monday I reviewed A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini, which I read for the World Party Reading Challenge.
- Tuesday’s post talked about The Report by Jessica Francis Kane, a novel recounting the Bethal Green shelter disaster during World War II.
- I reviewed Dennis Lehane’s new Patrick and Angie novel, Moonlight Mile, on Wednesday.
- On Thursday I shared my thoughts on The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa, a rare reread for me and my book group’s November pick.
- Finally, yesterday, I shared the latest installment of my audiobook miniseries, recommending some of my very favorite fiction for your ears.
How was your reading week? Did you acquire anything you can’t wait to read? Start or finish anything exciting? I’d love to hear about it!