Last week, when I was sick in bed, I did quite a lot of reading. I was sick enough not to want to get up, or really think hard, but not sick enough to just lay there. So reading was the order of the day. I had checked out these three books from the library; and read them while I was incapacitated.
The first book I read was Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay. I had seen this book recommended a couple of places, and it looked good and interesting, so I tried it out. The story intertwines the story of a modern woman with the life of a girl suffering during the Holocaust. It was really difficult for me to read because of the subject matter and intensity of Rosnay’s writing. She doesn’t mince words, and makes you feel the pain of her characters. So, in one way, it was very well written. While I don’t like to read things that aren’t uplifting, I think the fact that this is based on events that really happened make it worth while. It is my hope that I will learn compassion and awareness through reading of events that happened, with the understanding that people are still suffering like this today. So, I kind of recommend this book: it’s painful to read, but I think understanding suffering can be a good thing.
The second book I really enjoyed. Bill Bryson’s At Home: A Short History of Private Life combines a lot of things that I like, all together, in one book! Bryson is a very witty writer; he’s writing about domestic and homely subjects and their history; and the book is full of random,
mostly useless facts. The book is exactly what the title says, it takes the reader through different rooms of the author’s old English house, and teaches the surprising and often truly interesting history behind our homes and furnishings today. I learned quite a few new things, and enjoyed the reading along the way. If you’re interested in the home and history, I would recommend this book.
I also very much enjoyed the third book I was able to read, The Innocence of Father Brown by G. K. Chesterton. I’ve been interested in reading Chesterton for a while and found this book at the library, so I brought it home. This particular book is a collection of short stories centered around a rather incongruous detective, Father Brown. I liked the short story format and enjoyed the variety of stories in this book. Chesterton is a fabulous writer, and his mysteries are interesting and puzzling, without being scary. I’m definitely going to look for some more books by Chesterton, especially those that are more clearly Christian. I can recommend this book, especially if you like unconventional mysteries, great writing, and short stories.