Scattered thoughts on some books I’ve read in the latter part of the summer (if you want to know what these books are actually about, this is probably not the post for you):
Hild by Nicola Griffith
A tour-de-force. That is all.
Egg & Spoon by Gregory Maguire
This book strikes me as being truly suitable for all ages, which I think is a rare thing. It would also lend itself really well to being read aloud. Family road trip or bedtime reading book? Here is a pair of quotes I particularly liked:
“One should see the world, and see himself, as a scale with an equal balance of good and evil. When he does one good deed, the scale is tipped to the good — he and the world are saved. When he does one evil deed, the scale is tipped to the bad — he and the world are destroyed.’”
“Interesting. Who said that, your grandmother?”
“Maimonides. The great Jewish scholastic.”
“I didn’t know you read Jewish philosophers.”
“It is said, ‘You must accept the truth from whatever source it comes.’”
“And who said that?”
–A conversation between Brother Uri and the Tsar
“As an old friend of mine once said when I brought him some interesting brownies, ‘You must accept the truth from whatever source it comes,’ she replied. ‘Haven’t you read your Maimonides?'”
–Baba Yaga to Brother Uri, in the presence of the Tsar
All the Truth That’s in Me by Julie Berry
I really liked this book, but I was distracted by the mechanics of Judith relearning to talk. How much of her tongue did she have left? Was it really realistic for her to recover the ability to make coronal sounds?
Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys
Wow, this was so good. It reminded me of In the Shadow of Blackbirds and A Northern Light, both books I love.
The Birthmarked Trilogy by Caragh O’Brien
This exceeded my expectations and was really enjoyable. The dystopia(s) felt more realistic and stretched credulity less than most. I also liked that the heroine was a midwife instead of a natural fighter who spends ages training in martial arts.