It's not often I get to say this in the middle of July in the Midwest, but we are experiencing the most glorious weather. Low humidity, mid-70s temperatures, mostly blue skies with a few puffy clouds drifting by. I went out on my break today at work and sat and read my book and had to make myself go back inside. Surely this should be noted in some way--close early and let everyone spend time outside soaking up the nice weather. It won't last of course, but for the next several days I will be outside as much as I possibly can be. By Sunday it is forecast to be hot and humid once again, so this autumn-like teaser (yes, I am already ready for autumn) will be only a memory. But a pleasant one at least!
Let's see. All sorts of bookishness of one sort or another. I finished Eline Vere this morning and will be writing about it soon. The book, which is a library copy, is a little worse for wear but I tried to keep it as pristine as I could. I am looking forward now to getting back to Inevitable now. And in case you missed it, I loved the book and am sure it will be long in my memory. I am now working on Simone van der Vlugt's Shadow Sister. It is (one of) my gym books. It is a story that has been easy to get wrapped up in. It involves two sisters who are twins. There is something sinister going on--'shadow' sister indeed! I have van der Vlugt's newest book on hand as well, but so many of my Dutch Literature books are calling out to me at the moment, we'll see which is the next to be incorporated into the reading lineup.
Did I mention I am now reading in earnest Laura Ingalls Wilder's On the Banks of Plum Creek? I thought it was time to get back to Laura and her family. They are now living in Minnesota. For the first time they were living in a sod house, which she didn't especially like (being underground might be a little too cozy for me, too), but pa has just built a proper wooden house. Lots of new things for the Wilder family in this book--not least is that they now live close enough to a town for Mary and Laura to go to school--which is where I left off reading. It is a completely delightful read and I think I will keep going with the rest of the books when I finish this one. (I had been taking a little break in between reads but I just want to keep going--the momentum of their lives has taken over).
Speaking of charming (or delightful) reads . . . I have another one to share. What is it about Maine? Yes, the state of Maine. It seems to be a literary destination lately, and one I am happy to make. I have long had a fixation (fascination?) with Maine. Someday I really, really want to visit there. It's more of that coastal thing. I want to live by the ocean (same old story). Who knows, maybe someday I will. Until then, there are always books to take me there.
Yesterday I dropped by the bookstore and couldn't resist (truly no pun intended) The Irrisistible Blueberry Bakeshop & Cafe by Mary Simses. This is pure comfort read material--a book to enjoy in a few gulps on a sandy beach if possible (or maybe in my case on a sunny porch). It's an easy and undemanding and light-hearted story. I know things will end happily (and sometimes you just need a story like that). Think a Goldie Hawn/Kurt Russell movie--lots of flirty good humor and banter. Your basic feel-good story. The blueberries (yum . . . my favorite!) on the cover didn't hurt! Also by my bedside I have J. Courtney Sullivan's Maine for more local color (though I have yet to really get into the story--so many good books to pick up at the moment!).
If you have any favorite books set in Maine, please do share! You know I am always up for a good book recommendation.
Oh, by the way, I bought this coffee mug, too. It seems fitting to have at work in the library and is just the right size. I am a sucker for cute coffee mugs.
One last item, which I am excited about. I am doing a mini-bedroom-improvement. It all started as I need a new mattress. You know how things sort of snowball. I have picked out a couple of new furniture items for my bedroom and am going to create more of a reading nook environment since I spend so much time there. I'm excited as aspects of my life have needed a little overhaul and this is one step in that direction. It will include (fingers crossed) a full size (though skinny) bookcase where I hope to relocate all my Viragos and Persephones and maybe something else depending on how much space I have. That means shifting things about which will require a little creativity. I also have a couple of tables, including my night table, that I am going to refinish--am going for that distressed or "shanty chic" look, if I can pull it off. I am not one to share much of my personal life here, but I might be persuaded to share before and after photos--maybe. If posts seem sporadic (I'm not sure how much time and effort my little DIY projects will take), that is the reason why.