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Recent Reads

Find You in the Dark (2012) and Light in the Shadows (2013) by A. Meredith Walters.  The author's experience as a counselor working with abused and troubled children and teens shines through in this two-book series about young, obsessive love and mental illness.  Although dark and emotionally difficult to read, Maggie and Clay's story is interesting and thought-provoking.  I like the fact that there are no easy answers, and the "solution" to mental illness isn't magically meeting The One any more than the road to happiness is finding The One, earning more money, or whatever goal you think you want to reach.  Books must be read together and in order.

Breath of Life by Christine Pope (2011).  While the first book in the Gaian Consortium Series, this is a short, stand-alone read.  This is basically a decent retelling of Beauty and the Beast in a futuristic, harsh setting.

Forever My Lady by Jeff Rivera (2013).  Despite the romantic title, this is really the story of a troubled teen who is sent to a prison boot camp.  Can he find a life outside of the gang lifestyle?  Will his girlfriend be a part of that life?

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If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things by Jon McGregor

The May selection for my work book club is Jon McGregor's If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things (2002). The novel follows various individuals in one neighborhood on a particular day, an ordinary day that ends with a terrible tragedy.

Here's the short set of questions I e-mailed to book club members yesterday, along with my own responses.

Did you have a favorite character, or one that spoke to you the most? Who and why?
The father with the burned hands is the one who stayed with me the most after reading the book.

Did you notice that the day on which the events unfold is actually the same day that Diana, Princess of Wales, died? Does knowing that make any difference in how you see the story? I wouldn't have made the connection if I hadn't just watched some of the coverage of the Royal Wedding. To quote the author, he chose this particular day because his novel is about how ". . .everyday miracles of life and death go unwitnessed in favor of celebrity and sensati…

Current Little Pleasures

Girls' weekend in Omaha with Maya and her friend.

Happy Buddha:  Sweet Orange and Cedar Shower Foam from RITUALS

Time for iced or blended peppermint mochas.

Shopping for little gifts for Maya's Japanese pen pal.  They were matched through their schools, and we're hoping she can stay with us for a few days this summer.

The flock of wild turkeys, foxes, and other assorted wildlife entertaining us this fall.

Thanksgiving plans to visit my sister.

Hallmark Channel's Countdown to Christmas is back!

Current Little Pleasures

Christmas Keepsake Week, July 14-23, filled with Christmas movies on the Hallmark Channel.

Sending Christmas (in July) cards with a Peace greeting to some of my favorite people.  Why not??

Scott Tube Free Toilet Paper--nothing to recycle.

Haagen-Dazs Coffee Ice Cream--always!

Baby Driver movie.

Seeing photos from my sisters and niece on Facebook during their Italy trip.  I can't imagine they will want to come back home!

What are your current little pleasures?