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It’s been a busy week around here–we’ve been dealing with scorching hot weather, summer colds, and having some windows replaced. It makes for a lot of chaos and temporary discomfort (flies and heat!), but we’re happy to have it done.
Now if we could shake these colds, we’ll be ready to enjoy the downhill of summer–we’re officially past the halfway point to school starting again! Summer always goes fast.
Here’s what I’ve been reading online this week.
10 History Books That ‘Game of Thrones’ Fans Need To Read, Because The Red Wedding Was Based On A Real-Life Event – Bustle
Okay, we’re behind the times over here, but my husband and I are slowly working our way through Game of Thrones (the show, though I have read the first novel in the series). We just saw The Red Wedding. I feel like I should not be shocked by anything that happens on this show anymore, but OMG. I’m not a royal history buff, but it seems that some of the true stories that inspired GoT are just as shocking.
Readers of fiction are more open-minded and live longer. Fine, twist my arm…
Beach/poolside reading is an unrealized dream in my life right now, so I’m not banking on the headline’s promise. For those who are able to grab a few minutes at the beach, check out this list and let me know if you’ve read any.
The only one I’ve heard much about is The Book of Essie, which is getting excellent early reviews from trusted readers. Maybe I can try these in the backyard while the sprinkler is on…
Earlier this week I saw something on social media about a new community that had named itself “Gilead,” and the scorn for the choice ran rampant. Fair enough, maybe–it’s Atwood’s Gilead that most people know in this pop culture moment. But my first thought, when I saw the story, was that Marilynne Robinson also wrote of Gilead–a historically abolitionist town, but practically no more accepting than Atwoods overtly oppressive Gilead.
So while neither of the fictional Gileads are a good model for any community, they aren’t the only ones. It turns out, Gilead has a much longer history than these novels.
Some Biblical scholars think the word “Gilead” means “hill of testimony.” So it may not be all that surprising that the concept of testimony — of crying out, of speaking up, of not being silent — is what links all three of these invocations of Gilead. Old American attitudes about who belongs in our cities and towns and who does not also thrum beneath these stories.
What It Takes to Get a Five Star Rating From Me (And Ten Novels that Made the Cut) – To Love and To Learn
I love Torrie’s thoughtful approach to assigning GoodReads ratings to the books she’s read. I rate books on GoodReads, but I’ve decided not to do so on the blog–I don’t want the rating to overshadow the review. Torrie has a method that makes the star ratings feel less arbitrary. Plus I’ve read (and loved) eight of her ten 5-star reads!