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A Lawn Chair, A Good Book, and a Cold Drink...
...are really all I need to have a great summer!

I love reading. I always have. When I was a little girl my best friends were named Anne, Lucy, Ramona, and Jo. (Do you know who they all are? Just leave it in the comments!)

Anyway, my problem as an adult has been that when I read I can't put a book down, which means my children don't get fed, the housework doesn't get done, and everything falls apart until that last page is turned. So I tend to read in spurts. I don't read during the school year when I homeschool my kids, or we'd never get any lessons done.

But it's summer now! Of course, I have a ton of writing to get done, including finishing another book proposal, but I deserve a break. So I'm going to read.

I used to read mostly fast-paced, thriller type novels, but I've decided it's time to branch out a little and look more at literature. I've always loved the classics, like Austen. But I haven't read a lot of literature to date.

So I took a look at Honey for a Woman's Heart, by Gladys Hunt. She also wrote Honey for a Child's Heart, which is a great book with tons of suggestions of books to read to kids of all ages (and books they can read themselves! It's an absolute must). But the Woman's edition lists all sorts of authors I've never heard of.

So I started reading. And I was enthralled. I started with Quartet in Autumn by Barbara Pym. It's an old book that doesn't cover much of anything, just four people growing older. But it's just such beautiful use of language, and it transports you into another world of elegance--not because it's rich in material things, but rich in depth and character.

I used to abhor "literature" because it seemed like nothing actually happened. In thrillers you're turning the pages to find out how it turned out. Literature, though, is so character driven that the action is almost beside the point. And as I've grown older, I've started to realize that the really important things that happen to us in life are often not the big things, but the inner things as we process and grow and change.

I'm having a grand old time. And my kids are at a birthday party now, so I'm going to go start on a new mystery by Martha Grimes. I've always loved P.D. James, and Grims is supposed to be just as good. I'll tell you when I'm through!



At 7:09 PM , Blogger Charity said…

Let's see:
Anne Shirley (one of my good friends)
Jo March (another of my good friends)
Ramona by Beverly Cleary
Lucy... hmmm... not sure on that one.

I've enjoyed your blog - marriage advice, house tips, family etc... Thanks! :)


At 12:20 AM , Blogger Katrina said…

I love to read too! Have you ever read Mary Higgins Clark? She is my favorite Author. She writes good murder mystery with a twist of romance, and pretty clean books. and you can never guess "who done it" =)


At 7:10 AM , Blogger Sharon said…

I'm not sure about Lucy either, but Ramona must be Ramona Quimby. How many other Ramona's can there be out there in the land of kids' books?

If you like Jane Austen's books you may also like those by Anne Bronte (not Charlotte, but her younger sister, who only wrote two books before dying; Agnes Grey is great) and Elizabeth Gaskell (especially Wives and Daughters) These are a bit deeper than Austen's works but still quite easy reading literature, if there is such a thing!

~ Sharon


At 5:56 PM , Blogger Cassie said…

I knew all of them except Lucy. And Jo could either be from Little Women (what a great book to re-read this summer) or Jo from Nancy Drew. Although I'm betting that you were referring to Jo from LW.

I am the same way when I read - that's all I want to do. Not very practical with a 17 month old!


At 10:49 PM , Anonymous Bonnie said…

Anne Shirley was one of my all-time favorite friends too, what a great story. How about Laura, she was a good one to read about as well.

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About Me

Name: Sheila

Home: Belleville, Ontario, Canada

About Me: I'm a Christian author of a bunch of books, and a frequent speaker to women's groups and marriage conferences. Best of all, I love homeschooling my daughters, Rebecca and Katie. And I love to knit. Preferably simultaneously.

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