Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The End of May

Currently Reading: The Red-Haired Girl from the Bog by Patricia Monaghan and The Obituary Writer by Ann Hood

A quick pop-in! Three things:

I encourage you to check out my new essay published on the Literary Ladies Guide website, discussing nature in Anne of Green Gables. Here's the link:
I'm just starting to get into this "writing-outside-my-blog" thing and I would really love to hear some feedback, so feel free to comment!
Last week, I finished Life After Life by Kate Atkinson, which is probably the best novel I have read so far this year. It was mindblowing. And very difficult to describe, so I won't even attempt it. I can give you a glimpse, however, of the thoughts it raised in my mind as I read: how fragile and powerful are the trajectories of our lives; the pull and tug between free will and choice as the book dipped and flung itself into both; the ponderous, unanswerable questions of life and death and outcomes and consequences and the implications of our lives on the world, on each other, on history. How little things might lead to broader implications. How new decisions might still yield the same result. How little control we have over our destinies. How much control we have over our destinies. Life After Life was exquisite.
Also finished The Selected Letters of Louisa May Alcott. (Can you tell I'm on break from school?) The letters, like the journals, were such a pleasure because I felt fully immersed in LMA's world, her voice, her perspective. I actually enjoyed the Letters more because they were more conversational and detailed- often, I felt like Louisa was just talking to me, describing her thoughts and her doings. Like Louisa, the words were fresh and vibrant, as if they were written yesterday. I feel a deeper connection to Louisa the more I read of her, and these Letters strengthened that connection intensely. In fact, having read collections of both her Letters and Journals, I feel like I know her intimately, as a friend, as a kindred spirit. She is more real to me now than ever before.
So, a good May overall. June stretches before us, ripe with the promise of farmer's markets, museum visits, long walks, and a weekend vacation with friends up North. Books in the queue: In the Shadow of Blackbirds, some Ralph Waldo Emerson, Shadowfell, and Mrs. Dalloway. School starts again in two weeks, but I'm not focusing on that yet. My focus is on the good ahead.

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