This weather has me so unmotivated that all I want to do is curl up under the covers and read.
A Walk in the Woods: Rediscovering America on the Appalachian Trail by Bill Bryson
I began thinking more about the Appalachian Trail after reading Cheryl Strayed's Wild. Oddly, I didn't realize until after reading that book that real people hike those trails. For fun. From reading news reports, I always had this impression that, aside from day hikers and tourists, the trails were inhabited by criminals. If you have any interest at all in the Appalachian Trail, this is a decent book to read. It seems like everyone who decides to hike extreme distances is undertaking some type of personal journey and while this is somewhat true in A Walk in the Woods, it is not at all as deep as Wild.
Years and years ago, my parents and I drove out to Mount Greylock, located in Western Massachusetts, one crisp fall morning. We were day tourists touching, not hiking, a tiny slice of the Appalachian Trail and taking in the autumnal sights of New England. Bryson (the author) points out several times in the book how deserted the trail is. For example, 30 million people lived within two hours' drive of the Water Gap. He crossed paths with only two other people when he was hiking the trail in that area one day. Now, I love exercise and walking and fresh air but I'm not very fond of bears. In fact, the thought of potentially bumping into a bear is downright frightening so for now, I'll remain a tourist. (I do want to bring the girls out to Mount Greylock in the fall. One fall. Maybe not this fall.)
And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini
If you've read and enjoyed The Kite Runner, read this. Well written, interesting characters and storyline.
When We Were the Kennedy's: A Memoir from Mexico, Maine by Monica Wood
I must have read a boring memoir at some point in my life because I tend to shy away from them, even though I know there are some good ones. This book kept popping up here and there and I found it available through the library when I needed another book to read. It was excellent. Add it to your reading list.
The House At Riverton by Kate Morton
A few years ago I read The Forgotten Garden, which I thought was a good read. I stumbled across this book by the same author last month. Like The Forgotten Garden, I also thought this was an satisfying read. While not necessarily a page turner, it does have an interesting plot. Although, there are enough clues to enable the reader to figure out some or all of the "secrets" in the storyline.
The Dressmaker by Kate Alcott
Unfortunately, this book was a bit of a disappointment. I have kind of a creepy fascination with the Titanic (as in, I feel I may have been on it in another life) and so any book that uses it as a backdrop, is a book of interest to me. The character development here was just not good. This book is fiction based on fact, so some of the characters in the book were actual real people. Lucile Duff Gordon, a main character in the book, was a real person and about 25% into the book I googled searched to see who was fiction and who was real. The description of her, including one written by the author, didn't quite match up to how I felt the character came across in the book. I also thought the dialogue was bad, especially after just having read The House At Riverton. You could easily pick up the book and if the Titanic or dates weren't mentioned, you would possibly think the story was taking place in 2012, not 1912.
Read any good books lately? Let me know if you have any recommendations!