Quick Lit: 2017 so far

Treating myself to a Kindle Fire as a pre-partum (is that a thing?) gift has been pretty great for my reading. Sweet Therese only wakes me up one or two times a night (#angelbaby), but it’s always nice to have a book to look forward to when she does.

Anne of the Island by L.M. Montgomery // I’m hoping to read the whole Anne of Green Gables series this year while I nurse my little girl, hoping that she’ll magically end up an Anne. I wasn’t incredibly attached to the first two books, but I was incredibly charmed by this one. Anne/Gilbert 4eva.

The Way of the Strangers: Encounters with the Islamic State by Graeme Wood // Because the most appropriate book to follow an Anne novel is…a book about ISIS? This book was fantastic. It is an intellectual history of sorts about the Islamic State that explores the religious origins of the death cult without devolving into demagoguery. Incredibly readable with an appropriate amount of dark humor that provides a break from the weightiness of the subject matter. Highly recommended.

Homilies in Praise of the Blessed Virgin by St. Bernard of Clairvaux // Chris took a class on the Cistercians last semester and recommended this to me. Four homilies; good Advent/Christmas-themed spiritual reading.

The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery // I read this because it’s the next pick for the Fountains of Carrots book discussion podcast. The main character, Valancy, is oppressed by her family’s expectations and after receiving a fatal diagnosis, sets out to please herself rather than her various annoying relations. I found Valancy totally insufferable for about 60% of the book, so much so that I almost put it down. But the last third of the book – the romance – picked up and it somewhat redeemed the rest. I would have absolutely loved this book at fifteen though, due to the love interest’s ~mysterious past~. I guess it shows Montgomery’s range if she can write a protagonist as wonderful as Anne and as annoying as Valancy.

Lactivism: How Feminists and Fundamentalists, Hippies and Yuppies, and Physicians and Politicians Made Breastfeeding Big Business and Bad Policy by Courtney Jung // Holy subtitle, Batman. This was a fine read examining the overhyped benefits of breastfeeding, even if the prose wasn’t incredibly inspiring. Her best point was the shift of emphasis from breastfeeding to breast milk that allows lawmakers to claim they are promoting breastfeeding by requiring insurance to cover breast pumps and employers to provide pumping space while never considering paid maternity leave.

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch // I heard about this multiverse novel on the What Should I Read Next? podcast and thought the premise sounded intriguing. I read the most of it while I treated my sick toddler with two consecutive viewings of Planes: Fire & Rescue. Definitely a page turner, if mostly predictable.

Troublemaker by Leah Remini // My “book you don’t want to admit you’re dying to read” for the MMD reading challenge. I have a secret hobby of reading about the cult she grew up in (plz don’t Google me, scary people) and have watched “Going Clear” a handful of times as well as her whole A&E show. I was expecting this book to be pretty lame like most celebrity memoirs, but it was pretty juicy, not gonna lie.

Currently Reading: I’m reading several pages of God or Nothing: A Conversation with Robert Cardinal Sarah for some spiritual reading in the morning and want him to be Pope so badly. I’m slowly making my way through Gaudy Night but have lost some of my reading mojo. I also should be reading A Tree Grows in Brooklyn for Well-Read Moms, but I’m still on the waitlist for the Overdrive copy, so I should probably just go pick it up at the library.

I decided to do a read aloud with Christopher over lunch because I found myself staring at my phone while he ate his PB&J painfully slowly (like 45 minute nap stalling, slowly). I picked up The World of Pooh from the library and while it might be a little over his head, he gets the gist (I try some elementary Charlotte Mason-style narration with him, ha.) He looks forward to it every day, and so do I.

Linking up with Modern Mrs. Darcy.

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