Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.~ F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
Many times since midsummer, I’ve meant to sit down and write about our adventures in reading. Those warm, leisurely days seem so far away now, and yet, it’s only the second day of autumn. My fellow Ohioans and I typically don’t experience a gradual exchange of seasons; it’s more like one shocking jolt of extreme weather to another in the heartland. Even though I was drenched from the sweltering heat and humidity mere days ago watching my kids run in their cross country races, today, I am happily drinking tea and bundled in my fleece jacket and leggings, glad for this drizzly, gloomy, and chilly day. It’s the perfect time to light a candle, cozy up with a warm blanket, read, write, and muse over literature.
On the subject of change, Bookworm Boy is now a teenager! Henceforth, he will be referred to as “Bookworm Teen.”
The novel I’ve been engrossed in during the past two weeks is The Paris Library by Janet Skeslien Charles. The Bookworm Dad remarked how surprised he was that I was still reading the same book as I tend to barrel through most volumes in a few days. However, my lack of speed-reading through this lovely novel is the consequence of a mix of tiredness due to a too-early-for-my-nature school day wake-up time and wanting to pace myself, to absorb every word of this intriguing book. I’m so close to finishing and I know I will feel remorse once I turn the last page. The story is that good. If you have an affinity for books, reading, libraries, Paris, complex relationships, and/or historical fiction, I am confident you won’t be disappointed with Charles’ novel.
A surprisingly delightful title, one that I read on my Kindle, is Geraldine Verne’s Red Suitcase by Jane Riley. I fell in love with Geraldine, her supporting characters, and this endearing story. Highly recommend. (And I did not hesitate to add her debut story, The Likely Resolutions of Oliver Clock, to my “To-Read” list!)
On one awful weather day last month, I caved and let The Littlest Bookworm watch his first Star Wars movie. (Bookworm Teen reminded me that he was probably, definitely younger than his brother’s age when he was first given the viewing privilege. There may have been an eye-roll directed my way after this stored-away fact was revealed as he picked up the remote control and searched for the flick.) Ever since he bonded over the movie phenomenon with his older brother, my little guy has been bringing home Star Wars-themed readers from the school library. (Am I the only one that finds the names of the characters and worlds in these books quite cumbersome?) Nevertheless, we read these books together, and his knowledge of that entire universe expands as does my awe of his blossoming reading level and abilities. He surprises me every day and it’s an incredible gift. Lately, I find him in his favorite spot on the couch, a book opened flat against his lap.
Speaking of Star Wars, Bookworm Teen was entranced with Kevin Shinick’s Star Wars: The Force Collector and read through the novel swifter than he has most books of late. He was disappointed that the author’s work wasn’t part of a larger series. So, when his younger sister was at dance class the other day, I paid a visit to the Teen Collection Librarian, and she helped me gather a few more choices for him. I came home with a stack of Star Wars-related titles (not all pictured), and books with the themes of football/sports, war heroes, and history, his other passions. Every one of the kind librarian’s suggestions are proving positive! (Especially the graphic novels.) Those librarians? Gems, I tell ya.
The Bookworm Girl is well on her way to achieving her goal of finishing 100 books this year, a triumph she’ll likely surpass. Recently, she delighted in reading the first four books in the Mr. Lemoncello’s Library series (as did her older brother) and routinely has a book on her nightstand, one in her backpack, another in her locker, and consistently, one in her hand. She reads at an alarming rate, and although she loves her school and thrives there, I believe her one remorse is that being gone for the better part of the day slows down her reading pace! (To the left are the titles remaining from her latest library haul.)
I’m not one to overindulge food, but I tend to overdo it when I find myself browsing titles online to reserve or make a trip to the library. I doubt I’ll make it through all of the stories I chose in the borrowing time allowed, but I plan to give it my best effort. And after attending Maggie Smith’s exquisite (in-person!) poetry reading in August with one of my best friends from childhood, I have a stack of poetry to make my way through, as well.
Aside from burying my nose in exquisite books, I hope to spend this autumn cooking, hiking, taking pictures, writing, and crafting haiku. How will you be spending your fall days?
Her pleasure in the walk must arise from the exercise and the day, from the view of the last smiles of the year upon the tawny leaves and withered hedges, and from repeating to herself some few of the thousand poetical descriptions extant of autumn — that season of peculiar and inexhaustible influence on the mind of taste and tenderness — that season which has drawn from every poet worthy of being read some attempt at description, or some lines of feeling.~ Jane Austen, Persuasion