Wednesday, May 15, 2013

It's Summer--Time to Chill Out a Little

We've already had 90 degree weather here, so it's time to start looking for books to cool off. Here's one for busy readers--it's short, it's entertaining, and it's even mildly educational. The Frozen ThamesThe Frozen Thames by Helen Humphreys
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

If you are looking for a factual history of times when the Thames froze over you'll need to use one of the books listed in the back of the book. But if you would like a short, chronological feel for reactions by the citizens across the centuries, this is a delightful way to experience the cold, the awe, and the wonder of a river iced over deep enough to work and play on it.

Each "chapter" is only a few pages long, more vingettes that short stories, but each has it's own voice. Although each instant is dated, you might want a reference handy as there are only a few references to the current ruler. (Unless you are a big history buff and have things like that memorized.)

I give this a 3.5 or even a 3.75.

View all my reviews

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Books and Death and yet not depressing

The End of Your Life Book ClubThe End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a special book. It is the story of an exclusive book club with just two members, Will and his mother--but it is so much more than that.

It's a tribute to a remarkable woman who cared about people, especially the voiceless people of the world, with a passion. It is a loving memory of the woman who spent the last two years of her life staying in touch with the people she loved with grace and dignity. It is a resounding vote of confidence in the lasting contribution of books to the well-being of the human spirit.

I wish I'd met Mary Ann Schwalbe. She sounds like she was of the good people. And I have several (many) books I wish we could have talked about together.

View all my reviews