It’s been three weeks since I’ve posted. My reading pace has slowed a bit. Difficult family issues and the pace of life lately has made me tired at night, when I was most likely to work on my blog. I do a bit of reading or aimless perusing of Twitter and Facebook and then go to bed. But today I missed writing. I missed being a part of the book blogging community. So I said to myself, just get back in there, Laila. Write a post, anything, and writing the next one will be easier.
So what am I reading right now? I’ve been listening to Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book on audio in my car (library compact disc.) It’s delightful. Neil narrates it, and he is very good with voices. Not to mention his normal voice sounds sort of like Alan Rickman, only not quite as deep, which is always a good thing in my book. The pace of listening is slow, since I only listen on my way to and from work or somewhere else without my four-year-old son in tow. When he rides with me he likes to ROCK AND ROLL. But I’m on the last disc and should finish it within the week. It’s the perfect slightly creepy but not terrifying book for this time of year. It’s really exciting, with a mystery to it, and I’d recommend it whole-heartedly to any tween (or adult for that matter) who enjoys paranormal fantasy.
I’ve also been reading Madeleine L’Engle’s A Circle of Quiet. You probably know her from her Newberry Award-winning children’s book A Wrinkle in Time. I read that one a few years ago for the first time, and wasn’t totally blown away by it. But now I’m thinking I need to give it another go, or perhaps read one of her other books, like Meet the Austins. Anyway, I found Circle through a blog I like to peruse, Modern Mrs. Darcy. The blogger has some rather good book coverage, and she mentioned Circle in a post called “7 Books I Read Over and Over Again.” I can certainly see why she included it, because it’s the kind of book one should own rather than borrow, to dip in and out of and return to time after time. It’s a sort of memoir about writing, marriage, parenthood, small town life, and her Christian faith. Don’t let that last bit turn you off. Ms. L’Engle makes many references in the book to the ways in which the word “Christian” has been perverted by those who claim to espouse it. She writes:
I wouldn’t mind if to be a Christian were accepted as the dangerous thing it is; I wouldn’t mind if, when a group of Christians meet for bread and wine, we might well be interrupted and jailed for subversive activities; I wouldn’t mind if, once again, we were being thrown to the lions. I do mind, desperately, that the word ‘Christian’ means for so many people smugness, and piosity, and holier-than-thouness. Who, today, can recognize a Christian because of ‘how those Christians love one another?’
No wonder our youth in confused and in pain; they long for God, for the transcendent, and are offered, far too often, either piosity or sociology, neither of which meets their needs, and they are introduced to churches which have become buildings that are a safe place to go to escape the awful demands of God.
I am utterly taken with this book, and excited to find that it’s the first of four Crosswick Journals, named for the two-hundred year-old farmhouse she and her husband, Hugh, buy for a song in the fifties. They lived there year-round when her children were small, and later it was their summer home. It’s a lovely setting for her musings on life. I certainly plan on reading the next three journals sometime in the future.
So for now it’s finishing these two wonderful works, snatching time to read whenever I can. I’m not worrying about my reading pace – according to Goodreads, I’m 11 books ahead of my Challenge number of 65 books for the year! Sometimes it’s good to slow down, sometimes other things have to be done. What a wonderful, utterly necessary respite from cares my books are.