What have you read during your summer? What movies did you watch? Did you go to any shows, plays or concerts?
I did some reading over our vacation. Of course I brought way too many books for the time allotted. But what I did finish were interesting. I also saw a couple of movies. Unfortunately, we did not get to any live plays during our stay. Where we vacation there are a bunch of playhouses- catering to both the amateur and professional actor. The venues are these wonderful and charming old theaters. Very intimate. In the past we have enjoyed patronizing them. Alas, we just couldn't get to do everything this vacation.
My vacation reading list:
"The Greengage Summer" by Rumor Godden. I have always wanted to read one of her books. I found this one at a thrift store. It took me a little bit of time to get into it since the writing style is dated (book published in 1958). It is a coming of age story of an impoverished English girl who spends the summer with her family in France. A situation occurs and the children are basically left unattended in a foreign land. Their observations of the world in which they find themselves is interesting. It is a fun read with an insight into a by-gone world.
"That's Not English" by Erin Moore. A sociology-lite book regarding the differences between British English and American English. Witty and entertaining but not too heavy.
"Rush Oh!" by Shirley Barrett. The fictional story of whaling in New South Wales during the 1910's as seen through the eyes of the whaler's daughter. (The author based the main action on historical facts- the aboriginal method of using killer whales to help the whalers and the main whaler character) Very funny in spots with a host of eccentric characters. An unusual and unpredictable story. Some criticisms- was a little disappointed in the ending and the foreshadowing throughout the book was disrupting to the flow of the story.
"Short Novels of Colette". I have heard so much about the famous French author so I thought I should read some of her stories. I was very disappointed and only read two of the short stories, "Cherie and The Last of Cherie". I might have had difficulty since this is a book very much of its time. The various stories were first published in the late 1920's, early 1930's. I did not find any redeemable or likable characters in these two short stories. I also had difficulty understanding the dialogue- who was speaking, to whom and about what? Perhaps it was the translation and if I could/would read it in French would I then understand? I might go back and try the rest of the short stories, but then again, life is too short and there are too many books to read that I want to read. (I have found that when a literary book has a long and glowing introduction that needs to explain the book that is to follow, it is generally a dog of a story.)
Books I haven't gotten to yet:
"Between the World and Me" by Ta-Nehisi Coates. My husband and son read this book while on vacation. My turn next. It is essentially a letter from the author to his son explaining his take of race in the world.
"The Mother Tongue: English and How It Got That Way" by Bill Bryson. My husband is reading it currently. We always enjoy Bill Bryson's work. Witty, informational and well written.
"The Art of Grace" by Sarah L. Kaufman. From the book jacket, " Humanity at its finest is merely what Sarah Kaufman is offering in the inspiring, uplifting book, and we could all us a bit more of that in our lives."
The movies that we saw:
- "The Finest Hours"- I will blog about this movie and the following one in a later post.
- "St. Vincent"- (See above comment)
- "Captain America: Civil War"- Latest installment in the Marvel franchise. As with all sequels, most of the movie is the perpetual set-up of the next movie. One could possibly have a post movie discussion regarding the role of freedom and authority yet it seems as if the writers put those ideas in the trailer in order to make this movie seem loftier than it is. It is just a fun film to see and hear Robert Downey Jr's sarcastic quips.
- "The Guest"- Could have been so much better with a little more tweaking of the screenplay. Only thing good about the film- fun to see Dan Stevens (of Downtown Abbey's Matthew Crowley fame) in a totally different role and with an American accent.
What about you? What has been your summer entertainment? Read or see anything that was amusing, life changing, entertaining, sad, touching?