Next up was my mystery book, the unpublished manuscript by my friend, Greg Moffatt. I'm trying to make sure I focus on finishing at least one of the books that have been lurking too long in my sidebar, each week, and I was anxious
to get back to this one. Greg is multi-published, with several psychology books on violence, crime, etc. and one on parenting but his new manuscript is a coming-of-age memoir. I enjoyed it. Greg's a very good writer and I have no doubt he'll find a publisher for this book, as well.
Since I finished Greg's book, I have been running around like a chicken with its head cut off, running numerous errands, going to the gym, taking pictures with my new camera (I finally got a lens, after several weeks of borrowing) and cleaning like a madwoman. Our house has had a clutter problem for ages and we've been hacking away at it, but this week was one of those weeks that I was in "just let's toss it out, for crying out loud" mode. Sometimes, don't you just wish time would expand to fit all the things you need to accomplish? I felt that way, this week. My reading suffered due to all the cleaning and errands, but I've started two more books. I'm nothing if not an addict.
Learning to Bow by Bruce Feiler has been on my shelf for several years and when I decided now is the time, I didn't actually know quite where to look for it. As it turned out, I'd placed the book on a fairly prominent shelf. Wahoo for that! I thought I'd read two of his books, but after looking at Bruce Feiler's website, I realize I've only read one: Abraham. It was excellent and prompted me to collect the two other titles I own: Walking the Bible and Looking for Class.
Learning to Bow is about the year Feiler spent teaching in Japan and it is absorbing, so far. Japanese customs are so very far removed from those in America that it's easy to appreciate the author's occasional discomfort and utterly fascinating to read about his conversations with co-workers, internal thoughts, comparisons to life in the U.S. I don't have the book handy, but the publication date was the early Nineties. I can't say what, if anything, may have changed in twenty years, but Learning to Bow is an engrossing read and hopefully still fairly accurate.
To the Moon and Back by Jill Mansell is an ARC from Sourcebooks. I started reading it about 2 days ago and managed 97 pages, during about 80 of which I had tears streaming down my face. As with all of Mansell's books, there is a major change that takes place in the life of the heroine at the beginning of To the Moon and Back. In this case, a woman is widowed after her husband suffers a severe head injury in an automobile accident. The bits where he was in a coma were rough reading for me, simply because they were so authentic and I've been through watching a loved one linger in a coma then having to contribute to the decision to unplug life support when it became clear that brain function was gone.
But, of course, the tragedy is just an opening to yet another fun, romantic storyline. I am crazy about Jill Mansell's books. They're consistently enjoyable and every story is unique. Mansell has a terrific sense of humor and a wonderful way of tugging the heartstrings.
I'm also reading my camera manual. Exciting, no? I'm not sure which of the two remaining lurkers I'll focus on finishing, this week -- probably Jamie Durie's The Outdoor Room, since Haiku Mind is a book from my personal library and The Outdoor Room is one that was sent to me for review.
Incidentally, that last post about my review policy (which seems kind of pointless, since I'm not going to accept any ARCs till I've read or attempted everything I've already received) was awfully fun to write because it gave me a chance to reflect on what it is that I really love to read and the few types of books that don't interest me. Odd timing, though, writing a review policy as I've come to the conclusion that it's not fair to anyone for me to accept any books, eh?
I am slowly returning to some minimal blog-hopping, when I can find a spare moment, plus a bit of twittering. And, I plan to continue working on updating various bits of the blog. Next up, I hope to improve my author links and then update links to other blogs. As always, if you're a regular visitor and I haven't managed to add you to my blog roll, please feel free to ask me to add you. I can use the nudge. Since I've given up using Google Reader, I realize that I didn't transfer some blogs I was reading regularly to my blog roll, so there are probably at least a few people out there who are baffled as to why I suddenly stopped visiting. I need to amend that problem.
How was your reading week?