I read this quickly, in just a few days. Not only is this a short book, but its highly engrossing. Reading the trials that effected our Brothers and SI read this quickly, in just a few days. Not only is this a short book, but its highly engrossing. Reading the trials that effected our Brothers and Sisters in Sierra Leone and Guinea has done much to encourage me and build faith. May Jehovah continue to bless his people throughout the world. ...more
How could this book have been sitting, languishing on my shelves for so many years? How had I managed to deprive myself of such a story for so long? IHow could this book have been sitting, languishing on my shelves for so many years? How had I managed to deprive myself of such a story for so long? Its inexcusable, simple as that.
Upon suggestion from a fellow book-aholic on GoodReads, I picked up The Thirteenth Tale. I was not disappointed. We follow a young woman by the name of Margaret Lea, who is contacted by the author Vida Winter to write her biography. Margaret doesn't read books written by authors still among the living when there are so many others to read by authors who will never write again. However, she is intrigued by Ms. Winter and accepts the commission to "tell the truth".
The story unfolds of strange relationships, feral twins, a governess, a ghost, a garden and fire that destroyed it all. All too often, I found myself, or rather lost myself, in this telling of gothic strangeness and I loved it. I would come up from this story only to eat or drink and that begrudgingly. I stayed up late last night reading, it was well after two in the morning before I turned the last page and shut out the light. I've not done that in some time and it was a joy. Our protagonist, Margaret, left no stone unturned and even told us what happened to all the side characters in this tale, something that most authors don't bother to do. I had to find out what happened to everyone.
The Thirteenth Tale pulls you with a strange magnetic force into the pages of the story and doesn't let you go. You find yourself thinking about the characters long after you've had to set the book down and go back to work. You find yourself wondering what is going to happen next. Will Margaret finish the commission before time runs out? Will we ever know what really happened in that house so long ago? Will Margaret find the peace she is looking for? Questions such as these haunt you until you reach the last page and smile at the complete story, happy that everything worked out in the end even if it wasn't how you thought. In a rare fashion, I actually cried when this novel reached its conclusion. I was sad that the story was over.
There are books that we find a few times in our lives, if we are very fortunate, that have a power over us, that mystical power of a story. It fills us, guides us down it's own path and when we reach the end of that journey, we are left feeling a sense of both joy at completion and sadness that these characters we have met will go on without us. You see, their story is over for now and ours must continue. We have to say good-bye and good-byes are rarely kind and happy affairs in their entirety, but a cloud of sadness always lingers. Always, and I wouldn't change it for anything. ...more
"If you build it, he will come." One of the most famous lines in both film and literature. We, as readers, are dropped square in the middle of Iowa wi"If you build it, he will come." One of the most famous lines in both film and literature. We, as readers, are dropped square in the middle of Iowa with Ray and his family on his small farm. The place is mortgaged to the hilt and he starts to hear an announcer and see visions. He knows what he has to do without being given any specific instructions. Build a ball field, ease an author's pain, going the distance... all in hopes that he can see one person again.
Throughout the story, we are regaled with purity of baseball. I don't care how many players are using steroids, the game always has a purity to it. A stadium always smells like hotdogs, beer, dirt and fresh grass. Baseball is the smell of summer, the feeling of joy that brings even the biggest men back to a small boy if only for a few hours. Dreams are baseball.
Now I am lover of the game. I can't give you statistics or tell who won what series on what year. I always love to watch the game though. Even minor leagues, there's a local minor team in my home town and I can never get enough of there games. Shoeless Joe reminds all of what its like to dream again, even if it seems impossible, we are reminded of simple joys like the sound of ball hitting a bat with a whack and not a ping.
I wish I could put into words how wonderful this novel was. It may go off on a tangent here and there, but its always coming back to baseball. "The one constant in America has been baseball." ...more
So I'm a fan-girl... sue me. Part two of this adventure with Derrick Storm did not disappoint. With international intrigue, explosions, and sexual tenSo I'm a fan-girl... sue me. Part two of this adventure with Derrick Storm did not disappoint. With international intrigue, explosions, and sexual tension it has all the major bullet points of typical spy novel. I'd hate to say that this book is anything but typical, but it is. Don't get me wrong, it was a fast read and entertaining, but it doesn't exactly break new ground. ...more
This was a book that an online book club I belong to was reading a few months ago. I had to wait for a copy to become available at the library, so I m This was a book that an online book club I belong to was reading a few months ago. I had to wait for a copy to become available at the library, so I missed the chance to read it with The Book Addicts on GoodReads. I'm glad though that I did read it, even if I did get an odd comment from one of my managers at work. He thought it was a zombie book.
The author and his family learn that their matriarch has cancer, not just any kind but pancreatic cancer. Basically its a death sentence. Nearly everyone dies of pancreatic cancer, the point is to make the most of the time that you have left. Mary Anne Schwalbe is a brave woman, no matter how many times she tells you the contrary. She has survived many trips to the Middle East and Africa in her efforts to help women and refugees. Her last triumph was to have a library built near Kabul (forgive me if I am incorrect here, but I am sure it was in Afghanistan or Pakistan...). She gave so much of herself that at the end of her life it was hard to allow others to give to her.
It started in a waiting room for chemotherapy. Her son, Will, asks that one question that every reader loves to hear, "What are you reading?" And so began The End of Your Life Book Club. They spent almost two years sharing books, re-reading old favourites and discovering new authors. They used the books to help each other through an incredibly difficult time, they laughed, loved and read their way through the worst thing any one can imagine, the death of a loved one. Through it all Mary Anne and Will maintained their love for reading and each other by diving into a venture that they would never have the chance to do again.
I think what I loved most about this book was that it wasn't a eulogy, not really. Sure, Will misses his mother, loved her deeply, wanted the world to know the amazing woman that had given him life. What Will Schwalbe did was to show us that love doesn't end, it grows stronger. Take the time to show, to tell the people you love that you do care about them. Listen to them. Celebrate the fact that they have been and always will be a part of your life.
My mother has degenerative disc disease and is in constant pain, though she never really shows it. This book made me stop and think of how fortunate I am to be her daughter. She imparted to me the same gift that Mary Anne did to her children, especially Will, she gave me the love of reading, of human thought, of creativity. I am proud to be part of her life, and I hope... no I know she feels the same. She tells me all the time, along with the famous "If I can draw a smiley face in the dust on your dresser, you need to clean!"
I would love to have a chat with Mr Schwalbe, and let him know how much I appreciated a book that made me love my own mother more, that made me cry (which doesn't happen often) and that made me think how grand it is to have a woman we call Mom who shows us the incredible gift of reading. ...more
A wonderful book which lays out the prophecies and life of Jeremiah in a simple and chronological order. Jeremiah was a man who felt he was too youngA wonderful book which lays out the prophecies and life of Jeremiah in a simple and chronological order. Jeremiah was a man who felt he was too young to carry out the commission Jehovah gave him, but with holy spirit from God, the prophet spoke in a straight-forward manner to the Ancient Israelites. His example for us today has vast effect on each. ...more
This is not a book intended to replace the Bible by any means. Instead, its designed to take you into your Bible and explore more deeply the First CenThis is not a book intended to replace the Bible by any means. Instead, its designed to take you into your Bible and explore more deeply the First Century Christians that are featured in the book of Act of the Apostles. I was thrilled to dive deeper into a history that is honestly difficult to keep straight. Between the various missionary tours and the vast array of characters, its hard to keep everything straight. This book helps with that.
I was glad to start studying this and very sad to see it end. ...more