My High Summer Read-a-thon Reading Menu #HSReadathon

19 Jul

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Summer truly feels like the time to choose some “reading for pleasure”–those books that we’ve been setting aside for prime reading time. Well, the time is now, thanks to Michelle’s High Summer Read-a-thon this week, hosted at her delightful Seasons of Reading blog, with lively participation on its corresponding Facebook group.  Here are the books on my summer menu for this week.

Defying my prior belief that I didn’t care for Ursula LeGuin, I have become enthralled with her Earthsea books. They are such seminal works for the fantasy genre, quietly but confidently telling the story of winning through trials by virtue and character, as much as by magic. We are reading the first three in our TuesBookTalk Read-Alongs. So far, I have read A Wizard of Earthsea and The Tombs of Atuan. I’m now reading The Farthest Shore and I plan to read the fourth book Tehanu as well.

 

For Travel the World in Books Reading Challenge (#TTWIB) in July, I am getting immersed in two different family sagas, The Makioka Sisters and My Brilliant Friend. I hope I can finish them both this summer, but I’d better focus on one of them for this Read-a-thon! Have you ever seen the film The Competition, starring Amy Irving and Richard Dreyfuss? Both are entered in a world-class piano competition, and despite the romantic complications, it was the music and its role in their lives that stayed with me. In the climactic scene, Amy Irving’s character, Heidi, is rattled by a broken piano string and switches her piano concerto at the last moment: from Chopin to a more daring and modern selection, Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3 in C Major. For me, The Makioka Sisters is like the Chopin, an exquisitely controlled virtuoso novel; My Brilliant Friend is a daring and yet equally virtuoso performance by Elena Ferrante.  In this “high summer” week, I am probably craving more the bare-knuckle glissandos of Prokofiev, and therefore the free-wheeling brilliance of Ferrante.

 

I have one more item on my menu, a new book that arrived in the mail just today. It is M. K. Tod‘s new historical novel Time and Regret.

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Her WWI novel Lies Told in Silence was so excellent that I am really delighted to be reading Time and Regret for an upcoming France Book Tour.  Although I am planning a review, this book definitely qualifies as “reading for pleasure” since I can count on Tod for historical fiction that is splendidly researched and deeply felt.

That’s my reading menu and, as usual, my plate is full. I wish everyone a week of great summer reading!

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3 Responses to “My High Summer Read-a-thon Reading Menu #HSReadathon”

  1. Lory @ Emerald City Book Review July 19, 2016 at 1:21 am #

    Oh hooray, I am so glad you are enjoying the Earthsea books. I would love to do a reread myself…maybe later this summer.

  2. truebookaddict July 19, 2016 at 3:29 am #

    I’m excited that you’re so into Earthsea after not liking her books before. I’m really enjoying it myself. You have quite a line up…same as me. I’ll be interested to see how much I can get read…and you too. 🙂 Enjoy the week and thanks for joining us!

  3. JaneGS July 25, 2016 at 9:51 pm #

    With a two-week vacation in July, my reading rate has plummeted but now that I’m home again, bring on the high summer reading! I’m glad you liked the Ursula Le Guin–I started the first but was also reading The Song of Achilles and didn’t have time for both, while traveling. I thought Earthsea well written and compelling, but my main gripe with SciFi reared up–it seemed like too much work to learn the geography of the fantasy world. I would have preferred it to be a fantasy on Earth, especially since most of the world was pretty much medieval Europe anyway.

    Now I need to go and watch The Competition! 🙂 I hope to find time to read the second in the Elena Ferrante trilogy. I enjoyed the first a lot.

    I love the cover of Time and Regret–hope it lives up to its cover!

    Happy reading 🙂

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