In the past several weeks, I have managed to both increase and decrease the risk of an avalanche of books from my Mt. TBR*.
First, I finished my library book group's book, which was Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight. It was Alexandra Fuller's memoir of her childhood in Africa. I have to admit that it reminded me of Jeanette Wall's memoir, The Glass Castle. Perhaps there is a similarity between people who have, what I would call, strange and unique upbringings. While Fuller's memoir is full of the rich landscape of the people and animals that inhabit the countries of Zimbabwe (formerly known as Rhodesia), Malawi, and more, I found it to be just an okay read.
Second, I finished Sue Monk Kidd's second novel, The Mermaid's Chair. Having never read her first, I wasn't sure what to expect, but found it to be an interesting read. A daughter returns home to take care of her ailing mother, but finds much more than she expected. The daughter is at a stage of her life where she feels at loose ends, sorta a mid-life crisis, and almost resents the return home to a mother who is dealing with much more than her injury/illness. Perhaps because of her discontent, she finds a new love, but also finds a new way of looking at her family, and in particular, her mother.
Third, I finished reading Neil Isaacs, The Great Molinas. The novels tells a fictionalized tale of the life of Jack Molinas, who was a basketball great, became a lawyer, went to prison for gambling and point-shaving, and eventually, after his release from prison, is killed by the Mob. The story is told through the eyes of Jesse, a man who, under different circumstances, could have been another Molinas. Jesse's story is interwoven throughout Molinas's. For those who love sports, it is both a cautionary tale as well as a Who's Who of basketball greats.
Fourth, I continue to edit a manuscript, but have also nearly completed The Double Bind by Chris Bohjalian. The Double Bind is the story of a homeless man, Bobbie Crocker, and Laurel Estabrook, a social worker. Their lives intersect at a homeless shelter, but as the story continues, their lives have intersected before. It is his death and a box of his photographs that set Laurel on a path of obsession. I haven't quite finished it, but I suspect that there are more surprises to come--for Laurel and for the reader.
In the meantime, I have received a few more books from fellow bookcrossers. So, while I have whittled down the mountain a bit, more snow has fallen in the way of several new suspense thrillers and mysteries. I have also added Charlie Wilson's War to my reading pile. It is my library book group's book for May and will probably take me until then to absorb its contents.
* Mt. TBR is, in bookcrossing parlance, a term for the pile of books that are intended To Be Read in the near and not-too-distant future.
Causes Nancy Smith Supports
Doctors without Borders
American Diabetes Association