Out of the Silent Planet and Perelandra

C. S. Lewis's space trilogy has been on my reading list forever.  Well, at least since I joined Goodreads, which was 2012.  This year I've finally read it, and I posted a podcast review of the first two books over on Classics Considered.  Check it out and let me know what you think!

New(ish) books

I seem to view summer as the season for buying books.  (Though, let's get real here, when is buying books ever out of season??)

This gorgeous Vintage Classics Jane Eyre was on my wish list for a while, so when the price lowered on Amazon, I thought I'd better seize the opportunity.  (For anyone who's interested, it's still a pretty good deal right now!)  I read Jane Eyre two or three times as a tween/teen, but that was...well, some time ago.  It's long overdue for a reread.

Stendhal's The Red and the Black is a book I know little to nothing about, but it's been on my radar as a French classic I should read.  Found it in the local thrift store for a deal, and in really good condition.  I just love Penguin Classics paperbacks.

Speaking of which, I was ready for more Jack London after The Sea-Wolf.  His sailing memoir, The Cruise of the Snark, looks to be right up my alley.  I found this practically new copy in a small local *bookstore, which I've only been to once before.  I also picked up The Man Who Was Thursday, my favorite book (so far) by G. K. Chesterton.

*You might remember my previous excursions to Powell's Books in Portland, Oregon, where I would sell books and use the discount from that to buy new (often used) books.  Though I still love Powell's, I'm super happy to have found a bookstore nearby where I can have the same experience, albeit on a smaller scale.  

What are your favorite places to buy books, either in person or online?  I'd love to hear about them!

The good old summertime

It's been a while since I gave a personal update, and now it's summertime I feel things are slowing down enough to blog (yay!).
Saying good-bye to the rhodies, hello to the foxgloves!

This spring was very busy, both in work and in personal life.  A few things I did:
  • Took a volunteer job for a four-day weekend outdoors.  Very stressful, but I learned a lot from the challenge.
  • Went on an elimination diet for several weeks.  It didn't help my skin issues, but I lost some weight(!).
  • Mentored (and continue to mentor) new employees at work.
My (very basic) microphone setup.

The best book I read in the last month or two is The Sea-Wolf by Jack London, which I reviewed (spoiler-free!) on my classic literature podcast.  There's nothing like reading a sea story, and I think it's my favorite genre for summer reading.  :)

Other spring/early summer reads:
  • Short stories by Shiga Naoya.  While I didn't enjoy the collection that much, it still makes me want to read more Japanese literature.
  • All My Sons and Death of a Salesman, plays by Arthur Miller.  He's truly talented, but the stories are very depressing.
  • That Hideous Strength (currently reading), the last book of C. S. Lewis's Space Trilogy.  A podcast review of the first two books will be coming out tomorrow (Monday, July 3rd).
  • Hero (currently reading), by Michael Korda.  A coworker and fellow history enthusiast was kind enough to lend me this 2010 biography of T. E. Lawrence (and you know how I feel about T. E.).  Looking forward to focusing on this tome as soon as I finish The Space Trilogy.
I'm halfway through the year, which means I need to decide whether to catch up on my own Sherlock Holmes challenge or officially abandon it (ugh).  It may have been a mistake to try to re-read it at this time.  I try to avoid re-reading because my TBR list of books I haven't read before is so long.  Haven't decided yet...
Roses growing at my old college campus.

This month, I'm also participating in Camp NaNoWriMo.  I usually work on one of my novels, but this year I'm writing a "semi-autobiographical novel/memoir" in the format of This Side of Paradise.  I don't expect to finish the entire project this July, but if I get most of it written, that will be good progress.

A very happy July to you all (and happy Independence Day for those of us in the U.S.!)!