Sunday Salon – February 21, 2010

February 21, 2010

8:00 AM

Good morning! Welcome to another edition of Sunday Salon – a weekly event where “bloggers participating in that week’s Salon get together–at their separate desks, in their own particular time zones–and read. And blog about their reading. And comment on one another’s blogs. Think of it as an informal, weekly, mini read-a-thon, an excuse to put aside one’s earthly responsibilities and fall into a good book.

We have been having beautiful spring-like weather the last week with temperatures in the mid to upper 60s…but this morning is cold and cloudy and rain is threatening. I’m looking forward to catching up on my reading later this afternoon.

Since I last participated in the Salon on February 7th, I finished a really beautiful memoir titled Let’s Take The Long Way Home: A Memoir of Friendship by Gail Caldwell (read my review). This slim book is very moving, and although it made me cry, I loved Caldwell’s writing and her message.

I also FINALLY finished reading Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (read my review). Wow, this book took me forever to get through. I started it February 1st and finished it yesterday – 20 days! I cannot remember the last time it took me 20 days to read a book less than 600 pages long. I am not sorry I read it, but it will not go down among my favorites. I have been wandering around the blog-0-sphere reading reviews of Wolf Hall and it seems to be a rather polarizing book. People either love it and rave about it, or (like me) they come away with admiration for Mantel’s writing, but dislike the novel. I have not read other books by Mantel…I am curious if her style in Wolf Hall is typical for her, or did it fall outside her usual writing style.

My current read is another memoir. Just Don’t Fall by Josh Sundquist is what I would classify as “inspirational.” Sundquist was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma at the age of nine and beat the odds by surviving the cancer, although he lost his leg in the battle. Many young boys might have given up their dreams, but Sundquist went on to ski for the U.S. Paralympic team in Turino, Italy in 2006. I will most likely finish this book today. Watch for my review on March 1st when I will also be posting a terrific Vlog by the author. Two hardcover copies of Just Don’t Fall will be offered for giveaway here on Caribousmom as part of my Reading for A Cure project. Check out this post to learn more about how to be eligible to win not only Sundquist’s book, but several other books in the month of March. If you are interested in sponsoring me in March to be added to the list of eligible potential winners, drop me an email or leave me a comment and I’ll add you to the list.

Here is what I have on my tentative “to read” list for the rest of February and March:

  • Life Sentences by Laura Lippman (I will be touring this book for TLC Book Tours on March 3rd)
  • An Irish Country Girl by Patrick Taylor (Taylors entire Irish Country series is part of the March giveaway for Reading for a Cure)
  • The Children’s Book, by A.S. Byatt
  • The Lacuna, by Barbara Kingsolver
  • The Lotus Eaters, by Tatjana Soli (I will be touring this book for TLC Book Tours on March 24th)
  • Saint John of the Five Boroughs, by Edward Falco
  • In the Wake of the Boatman, by Jonathon Scott Fuqua
  • The Elephant Keeper, by Christopher Nicholson
  • The Russian Dreambook of Color and Flight, by Gina Ochsner

Undoubtedly more will end up on that pile as the weeks slip by!

What are you doing today? Whatever it is, I hope it involves a great book or two!

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    • Nicole on February 21, 2010 at 09:49

    Wolf Hall just doesn’t seem like it is a book that I would enjoy. I am very curious about it because I like the time period and am interested in Cromwell, but I just think that it might be a little dryer than I would like. A friend of mine has a copy of the book and she said that I can borrow it, so I might take the opportunity to try out a chapter or two.

    Today I plan on Salon-ing for a bit an then heading out to play some bocce. I’ll probably read Keeping The Feast on my subway ride there and back. Hope you enjy your Sunday,

  1. I’m planning to spend the day relaxing (for once!) and reading. I’m in the middle of Fatelessness and I’m hoping the book isn’t horribly bleak.

    • lenore on February 21, 2010 at 11:14

    20 days spent on one book is not something I can afford right now! May try it sometime later though.

    • Laura on February 21, 2010 at 11:18

    You have another ambitious reading list there, Wendy! I’m eagerly awaiting your thoughts on the Kingsolver. Have a great day!

  2. The weather is gorgeous here too! I’m reading The Weight of Heaven, but it’s slow going, since I’m not feeling so hot.

  3. Uh-oh, I’m just beginning Wolf Hall so here is to hoping that I like it better than you did. It sounds really interesting but who knows. It sounds like you have some interesting books to read…enjoy!

  4. I love to read but can’t imagine giving up 20 days for one book!!! Looks like your upcoming reading month is going to be great! Enjoy!

  5. The Children’s Book, The Lacuna and Wolf Hall are all on my TBR list.

    • Wendy on February 22, 2010 at 07:29

    Nicole: Given your interests, you might like Wolf Hall…some people have loved it (I am beginning to feel like maybe I just didn’t “get it”!). Your Sunday sounded relaxing and fun! Enjoy Keeping the Feast – I loved that book 😉

    Deb: I haven’t heard of Fatelessness…I’ll be interested to see your thoughts on it.

    Lenore: I know – it annoyed me that I spent 20 days on ONE book … although I did read Keeping the Feast and started Just Don’t Fall during that time period too (something I rarely do is read more than one book at a time, but I HAD to this month!)

    Laura: I am really looking forward to the Lacuna (although I’ve read some lukewarm reviews of it)…

    Kathy: The Weight of Heaven is on my radar – I’ll be interested to read your review of it.

    Samantha: I hope you’ll enjoy Wolf Hall and have a better reading experience than I did (many people really like it – maybe you’ll join them).

    Staci: Well I was glad to finally be done with it! A HUGE investment of my time for a book I really didn’t like. Oh well….

    Stephanie: Looks like we will be reading the same books 🙂

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