Tag Archives: Latin American authors

Sunday Salon (Dec. 7)

The Sunday Salon.com

This week I finished Something Rising (Light and Swift) by Haven Kimmel. Although I’ll read other works by the author, I can’t recommend this one. It doesn’t touch A Girl Named Zippy (which I listened to). Something Rising never took off in the second half, as reviews promised. The plot finally thickened and the pace picked up in the last 50 or so pages, which I thoroughly enjoyed, but it took too long to get there.

Now I’m about three-quarters of the way through Solstice Wood by Patricia A. McKillip. This seems an appropriate time of year to read it, although the title refers to the summer solstice, not winter. I rarely read fantasy, but I do enjoy the genre when the story is set in contemporary times, as this book is, and the fantasy isn’t overwhelming. In the late summer and early fall, I read three such books: The Limits of Enchantment by Graham Joyce, an intriguing novel with a touch of fantasy, and two books by Lisa Tuttle, The Silver Bough and The Mysteries, my favorite of the two. The latter was more a detective story with elements of fantasy woven into the tale. Solstice Wood is pretty good, too. Until this recent surge of interest, I probably hadn’t read fantasy in a decade – unless The Time Traveler’s Wife qualifies. It’s a pleasant change of pace.

My current audio book is Isabel Allende’s Ines of My Soul. I listen to audio books only in my car, and with my short commute to work and the limited driving I do around town, it takes me awhile to hear a book – except when I go out of town, of course, which I often do. I’m almost through the second of nine discs, and it’s a good story so far.

I’ve discovered that I really enjoy listening to books set in foreign lands (Memoirs of a Geisha, A Thousand Splendid Suns) because I don’t have to stumble over the pronunciation of names and words . Were I reading this book, I’d be pronouncing Ines with a long i instead of a long e, for example, and I’m sure I’d have difficulty with which syllables to accent, as my Spanish is limited.  Although I’ve read several of Allende’s books, this is the first time I’ve listened to one.

Hope everyone has a good week ahead and enjoys the season of lights during these long nights!

Edit 12/08: I suppose I should have mentioned the Harry Potter books when mentioning fantasy. I read all of them.

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Filed under fantasy, Latin American authors, The Sunday Salon

Challenge Number 2: Well-Seasoned Reader

Beth was right. I’m entering another challenge, this one from Book Nut:

well-seasoned-readerHere’s how it works:

Rule #1: The challenge runs from January 1 to March 31. (No cheating and starting before!)

Rule #2: You must read three books. After that, it’s up to you how much you want to read.

Rule #3: The books must:

have a food name in the title
OR
be about cooking/eating
OR
have a place name in the title
OR
be about one (or more) person’s travel experience
OR
be about a specific culture
OR
be by an author whose ethnicity is other than your own (see, I squeezed it in!)

I’ll leave it up to you to choose how the three books you read fit the criteria.

Rule #4: They must be middle-grade on up, but can be either fiction or non-fiction.

The purpose, this winter, is to take yourself someplace out of the ordinary, to go on a literary trip, whether that be challenging your expectations, discovering a new place, or enjoying the experience of reading about good food, places, and people.

How can I resist? This challenge is way too tempting. My three books will most likely be:

Gabriella, Clove, and Cinnamon by Jorge Amado – This book has been in my TBR stack for a couple of years, ever since I read Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands by the same author. I included this book in my list of selections for the themed reading challenge. This one counts as having a food name in the title and is by a Brazilian author – far from my southern U.S. roots.

The School of Essential Ingredients by Erica Bauermeister – I mentioned this book in my most recent Sunday Salon post. Due to be released January 22, this book fulfills the “be about cooking/eating” requirement. Not to mention that I can’t wait to read it.

Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Promote Peace…One School at a Time will likely be my third read. It’s already in my Top 10 TBR list, and reading it will give me my dose of non-fiction this winter. Oh, and it sort of has a food name in the title and definitely is about a specific culture.

Stay tuned – there’s one more challenge I plan to enter. That should be enough for my first full year of book blogging. Then again…

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Filed under book chat, Challenges