Sunday, August 15, 2010

What We're Reading: Summer 2010 Edition


I was rewatching an old Gilmore Girls episode the other day which reminded me it's time to post my quarterly 'what we're reading' post. Specifically, it was this exchange:

Rory: This thing is too small.
Lorelai: That backpack is not too small.
Rory: It's miniscule.
Lorelai: Just take your schoolbooks and leave some of the others.
Rory: I need all of my other books.
Lorelai: You don't need all these.
Rory: I think I do.
Lorelai: The Edna St. Vincent Millay?
Rory: That's my bus book.
Lorelai: Uh-huh, what's the Faulkner?
Rory: My other bus book.
Lorelai: So just take one bus book.
Rory: The Millay is a biography, and sometimes on the bus, when I pull out a biography and I think to myself, 'I don't really feel like reading about a person's life right now.' then I'll switch to the novel. And then if I'm not into the novel. I'll switch back.
Lorelai: What is the Gore Vidal?
Rory: That's my lunch book.
Lorelai: Uh-huh. So lose the Vidal or the Faulkner. You don't need two novels.
Rory: Vidal is essays.
Lorelai: But the Eudora Welty's not essays or biography.
Rory: Right.
Lorelai: So, it's another novel. Lose it.
Rory: It's short stories.
Lorelai: This is a sickness.

And I found myself wondering: would Rory Gilmore embrace or despise the concept of the Kindle? Personally, I'm a huge fan (but I tend to be an unabashed technology whore). The best part about a Kindle (besides the instant gratification of purchasing books electronically) is that no one can borrow your books and not give them back. But on the flip side, you can still spill pizza sauce all over them while reading in bed just like with any other book, and instead of just smearing the stain into the paper and moving on with your life, you have to get up and get something to wipe it up with. Major pain.

Anyway, what's currently on my Kindle (in addition to enough other titles to fill a Rory-sized backpack): My Name is Memory by Ann Brashares. I know, I know, she wrote The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, but after that, she wrote some great stuff for adults, too. (Namely, The Last Summer of You and Me, which I also recommend.) But Memory, based on the premise that a select few people can remember living multiple past lives, is equal parts romance and philosophy and suspense and was one of those stories that commanded my attention even when I'd put the book down.

What Nate's reading (age 11): I'm letting him read The Hunger Games (in anticipation of the release of the third installment of the trilogy next week). I really wavered on this decision. Is he too young? Will the intensity of this series be too much for him, even if the writing, characterization, and message are all ideal? What if the content upsets him? What if it doesn't? (Because it should, and I'd worry about his emotional development if it didn't.) I'm still not sure if I made the right decision, but he's halfway through, can't put it down (a universal reaction), and I won't lie: it makes me very happy to have a book series in common with him.

What Calvin's reading (age 9): The Last Dragon, by Silvana De Mari. It's a translation from Italian, and I've just started it myself because he loves it so. He actually just finished it, and declared it the best book he'd ever read.

I have to admit, I'm not sure what Charlie's reading right now, except that I am bugging him to read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo because I'm curious to know if he concurs with my 'meh' assessment or not (I like to be validated).

So, what are you reading? I probably have time for one more novel before school starts (since I'll devour Mockingjay in a matter of hours). What are your kids reading? Recommendations (and more Gilmore Girl quotes) always welcome in the comments!

Oh! And I almost forgot: Never-True Tales now has a Facebook page. If you are inclined to follow along, just 'like' it, (why does FB have such asinine wording for everything?) as I won't be posting updates on my personal Facebook page any longer and I don't want to lose anyone!
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