Hey there, my friends. Happy belated Thanksgiving to my American readers, and happy new week to everyone! Hope you all had a wonderful weekend, and that those of you who were celebrating last week had a fun and safe holiday, filled with all the jellied cranberry sauce you could ever wish for. Sorry for being out of touch last week! We were called out of town for a family memorial service the weekend before Thanksgiving – our family suffered a loss which wasn’t entirely unexpected, but which still left us all bereft. So it was good to all be together to remember as a family, and then to have a few more days together to reflect on what we are all thankful for.
In between all of the family and holiday stuff last week, I squeezed in a surprising amount of work (still not everything I’d hoped to get done – that never happens) and some fun. Steve and I let my parents put the kids to bed one evening, and snuck away for a date night to see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which we both LOVED. And we had a lovely quiet Thanksgiving with my parents (well, quiet-ish; it couldn’t be entirely quiet when one of the dinner guests, who shall remain nameless, has exuberantly discovered “CHEERS!” – drinks everywhere – and also decided that it’s more fun to pile Thanksgiving food on your placemat than to actually eat it). And on Friday, I spent a fabulous mamas-only day with my high school BFF. We got coffee, ate pie for breakfast, and watched all four episodes of Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life. (We were able to do this without conflict, because we were both Team Logan.) It was a refreshing week, spent with family and friends, and now it’s back to the grind.
As for reading, I basically kept up my normal pace last week, which was pretty good considering it was a holiday week. (The days when holidays meant laying around and reading for hours on end are in my past, and probably my future, but certainly not my present.) After I finished The Invasion of the Tearling, I picked up The Fishermen, which I’d been wanting to read since it was released (last year?). I liked it, but didn’t love it, so that was a bit of a bummer considering all the hype that it got. Still very glad I read it! The next book choice was a bit of serendipity that turned out to be just what I needed. I’d meant to turn to Here I Am, the newest release from Jonathan Safran Foer (and a library hold I couldn’t renew). But I finished The Fishermen in the car on the way to Albany, with several hours left in the journey, and Here I Am was packed in a bag in the trunk. So instead I picked up The Audacity of Hope, President Obama’s well thought out, erudite musings on public policy (I’d checked it out of the library and it happened to be in the front seat pocket, well within reach when I needed it). President Obama’s sensible, reasonable thoughts on the policies he believed we need most in order to lift the whole country were a joy to read, especially after an election season that has been anything but reasonable (and in light of the four years we have to look ahead to – ugh). It was also fun to read the little snippets he gave into his life as a U.S. Senator – I’m now eagerly anticipating the memoir I’m sure is coming after he concludes his term as President. The Audacity of Hope took me a little longer than usual to read, given all the family stuff we were doing at the same time, but I enjoyed every minute. I finally finished it up on Thanksgiving day, and after a little shuffling decided to return a few library books unread (I can always check them out again, or that’s what I’m telling myself) and grabbed another book I’ve been meaning to read for ages – Americanah, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I’m only about 100 pages in, but I am completely wrapped up in the story. It’s turning out to be one of those books that I can just disappear into until something jolts me out of the gorgeous writing and I realize that an hour has passed while I was miles away in Nigeria.
Well, this was lengthy. Even lengthier than usual, I think, which makes sense since I’ve been unplugged for a week! I’ll leave it there. Coming up this week on the blog, I’ve got plenty of fun bookish content. On Wednesday, I’ll have my diverse kidlit pick for you – I’d hoped to get it up last Wednesday, but that didn’t happen. Oh, well, Wednesday is still November, so we’re getting this one in just under the wire! And on Friday, my November reading wrap-up – and then it’s full steam ahead into the holidays!
Happy Monday, my friends! What books were you thankful for last week?