Did you reach the goal of 52 books?: Yes. I didn't blog about all of them, but I certainly read at least that many.
Sunday, December 26, 2010
Did you reach the goal of 52 books?: Yes. I didn't blog about all of them, but I certainly read at least that many.
I wasn't going to write more posts until the new year, but as long as I did last week's I might as well finish off the year with the best, most exciting book of 2010, a middle-grade biography-- John Bidwell: The Adventurous Life of a California Pioneer, by Nancy Leek.
Unless you live in Chico, you probably won't have heard of Bidwell, but he was one of the first Americans to get to California by crossing over the Sierra Nevadas in 1841. From then on, he was involved in everything interesting that happened in California; he worked and traveled for John Sutter, joined the California Rebellion, nearly started the gold rush a year or so early, took the news of gold to San Francisco, served in Congress, ran for California governor, and founded the city of Chico. He even ran for President on the Prohibition ticket in 1892 (the platform was temperance and women's suffrage--he never had a chance).
This biography is 10 chapters long and full of interesting and funny stories. Would you eat a coyote's windpipe if you were hungry enough? If you were a 17-year-old bride, could you carry your baby across the mountains, with no trail to follow and no shoes to wear? If you were a wealthy girl, would you be as brave as Annie and leave your home and family to get married and live in the wilderness of California? How would you tell the President's wife that she is supposed to share? And why did the lack of a batea keep the Gold Rush from starting for a couple of years?
This is a great book for anyone studying California or pioneer history. John Bidwell is available from Lyon Books, Bidwell Mansion, the ANCHR website, or me. Because Nancy Leek is my mom, and she wrote the book. Yay Mom!
Monday, December 20, 2010
Growing Up bin Laden: Osama's Wife and Son Take Us Inside Their Secret World, by Najwa bin Laden, Omar bin Laden, and Jean Sasson
I've read several of Jean Sasson's previous books about the lives of women in Saudi Arabia with great interest, and when I saw that this book was written by her, I knew it would be a worthwhile read. (When I first heard of the book I thought that it would be pretty sensationalistic.) Najwa bin Laden is Osama's first wife, who no longer lives with him, and Omar is his fourth son.
Najwa and Omar both tell their stories from their own perspectives. The text moves back and forth between the two, staying fairly chronological, so Najwa's life dominates the first half of the book, and Omar becomes more prominent in the second half as he grows up and starts to understand what his father is doing.
Najwa starts off with the story of her childhood, but she married her cousin Osama when they were both still teenagers. At the time, he seems to have been a normal Saudi guy--he was still in school, known for being serious, kind, and traditional, and all in all they were quite happy. Najwa lived in purdah from the time of her marriage, which means she almost never went out of her home and really only saw other female relatives most of the time (which eventually includes Osama's other wives). It's interesting, and tragic, to see how her life slowly changed as Osama became more radical and militaristic. She is clearly a very conservative and traditional woman, and at no time does she ever say anything bad about her husband, even as she narrates a life lived in close restriction and ever-worsening deprivation. She was kept very ignorant of her husband's activities and, even at the end, it's unclear how much she knows, as she stays in purdah.
The bin Ladens eventually left Saudi Arabia and lived in Sudan (near the end of their time there, it becomes clear that Najwa has never seen the city she lived next to for years). After that, they moved to Afghanistan, to the mountain of Tora Bora. There, Najwa was expected to care for her large family and even bear more children while living in a old shepherd's hut with no conveniences whatsoever.
Omar's part of the story gives a very different perspective on the same family life. He is the fourth son and appears to have a naturally peacemaking and compassionate personality. As a boy, he could leave the home and go to school, but as a bin Laden son his life was miserable from the start. He was wealthy, and others assumed that he was spoiled, but in fact his father was becoming more and more of an ascetic. The boys were given little attention from their father, but expected to act in unnatural ways (no smiling, no mischief, no fun), live in a nearly unfurnished house without air conditioning, and were frequently beaten. They all had asthma but were not supposed to have modern medicine. They were unmercifully bullied at school by both teachers and students. Omar did not attend school at all after about age 12, and while his peers were receiving world-class educations, he was left behind in ignorance. With his father mostly absent and neglectful, Omar took on much of the responsibility of looking after his mother and younger brothers and sisters. This upbringing warped all the sons, some of whom developed severe problems; Omar seems to have come out of it best.
As Omar got older, his father took him to Tora Bora, expecting to groom his responsible son as a successor. Omar was horrified by the conditions his mother and younger siblings would have to live in and by al-Qaeda's mission. Eventually he figured out how to get his mother and youngest siblings out--knowing that something was going to happen, they left in early September 2001--but most of his younger siblings were not allowed to leave. Their fates are unknown.
I sympathized with both, but Najwa's narrative appealed to me more than Omar's, probably because I am a wife and mother myself, and she really seems like a person I'd like. The social system they lived in trapped both of them for years, since their culture demands strict obedience and subservience to a husband or father. I was very impressed with how they have survived their difficulties. It's clear that both have been severely damaged by their years with Osama.
I would recommend this book if you're interested in issues of terrorism, the Middle East, and women's lives under radical Islam. Jean Sasson has been writing about women in the Middle East for years and has the background to handle this difficult material without making it sensational or inaccurate (as far as I can tell).
Sasson's other books include Princess, Princess Sultana's Daughters, and Princess Sultana's Circle. Those are the ones I've read, and they are semi-anonymous narratives by a princess of Saudi Arabia, describing what it is like to live in that extremely restrictive society. I would recommend them as well, (though I confess I'm sometimes annoyed by Sultana's extremely mercurial temperament!).
Sunday, December 19, 2010
OK, clearly my eyes are bigger than my stomach (brain?) when it comes to reading challenges. But this Feminist Classics Challenge is so cool! I have to do it too. This is another one that I can pick and choose from, but they all look interesting. At first I was happy because they had chosen The Feminine Mystique, which is one of those books I've always meant to read, but then they realized they needed more worldwide literature, which is also excellent. Anyway:
The project will work a little like an informal reading group: for the whole of 2011, we’ll be reading a book a month from this list of classic feminist fiction and non-fiction, and each of us will be in charge of the subsequent discussion for three months.
These discussions will be structured as follows: at the beginning of the month, the host in charge of that month will write an introductory post on this blog, reminding participants of what we’ll be reading and providing some historical context.
Then, later that month, she will post a series of discussion questions and invite readers to use them as points of departure for their own thoughts. You don’t necessarily need to answer these questions when sharing your impressions of the book; you may either integrate them in our post or use another approach altogether (and perhaps add to the discussion by bringing up points the host hasn’t thought of herself). Participants can either join the discussion on the comments section or post on their own blogs, which means you don’t necessarily need to be a book blogger yourself to join in.
Finally, at the end of the month, the host will post her thoughts on the book either here or on her own blog, as well as write a round-up post and collect the links of all the participants who decided to join in for that particular title.
Interested in joining us? Remember that you don’t have to commit for the whole twelve months – you’re more than free to pick only the books you’re interested in. Because we want to encourage interaction between participants, we’ve set up an In Linky where you can sign-up. However, you can join in at any time even if you haven’t signed up beforehand.And here are the titles:
January: A Vindication of the Rights of Women by Mary Wollestonecraft AND So Long a Letter by Mariama Ba - Amy
February: The Subjection of Women by John Stuart Mill and Harriet Taylor Mill - Ana
March: A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen - Emily
April: Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman - Iris
May: A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf - Ana
June: God Dies by the Nile by Nawal Saadawi - Amy
July: The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir - Iris
August: The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston - Emily
September: The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf - Amy
October: Ain’t I a Woman? by bell hooks AND Third World Women and the Politics of Feminism Anthology - Iris
November: Gender Trouble by Judith Butler - Ana
December: Sister Outsider by Audre Lorde - Emily
Some of these won't be easy for me to get from the library, so I'll be depending on the magic of InterLibrary Loan.
- The concept of the challenge is to take chances with your reading by finding books to read in unusual or random ways. I’ve listed 10 different ways to find books below. Feel free to complete at many as you want. However, anyone completing all 10 challenges by December 31, 2011 will be entered in a prize drawing to win a book of their choice from Amazon.
- The challenge will run from January 1, 2011 until December 31, 2011.
- Crossover books from other challenges is fine. You can read books in any format.
- On January 1, 2011, I will post pages for each of the 10 challenges so you can link up your completed posts.
The 2011 Challenges
1: Staff Member’s Choice: Go to a bookstore or library that has a “Staff Picks” section. Read one of the picks from that section.
2: Loved One’s Choice: Ask a loved one to pick a book for you to read. (If you can convince them to buy it for you, that is even better!)
3: Blogger’s Choice: Find a “Best Books Read” post from a favorite blogger. Read a book from their list.
4: Critic’s Choice: Find a “Best of the Year” list from a magazine, newspaper or professional critic. Read a book from their Top 10 list.
5: Blurb Book: Find a book that has a blurb on it from another author. Read a book by the author that wrote the blurb.
6: Book Seer Pick: Go to The Book Seer and follow the instructions there. Read a book from the list it generates for you.
7: What Should I Read Next Pick : Go to What Should I Read Next and follow the instructions there. Read a book from the list it generates for you.
8: Which Book Pick: Go to Which Book and use the software to generate a list of books. Read a book from that list.
9: LibraryThing Pick: Go to LibraryThing’s Zeitgeist page. Look at the lists for 25 Most Reviewed Books or Top Books and pick a book you’ve never read. Read the book. (Yes … you can click on MORE if you have to.)
10: Pick A Method: Pick a method for finding a book from the choices listed below (used in previous versions of the challenge).
- Random Book Selection. Go to the library. Position yourself in a section such as Fiction, Non-Fiction, Mystery, Children (whatever section you want). Then write down random directions for yourself (for example, third row, second shelf, fifth book from right). Follow your directions and see what book you find. Check that book out of the library, read it and then write about it. (If you prefer, you can do the same at a bookstore and buy the book!)
- Public Spying. Find someone who is reading a book in public. Find out what book they are reading and then read the same book. Write about it.
- Random Bestseller. Go to Random.org and, using the True Random Number Generator, enter the number 1950 for the min. and 2010 for the max. and then hit generate. Then go to this site and find the year that Random.org generated for you and click on it. Then find the bestseller list for the week that would contain your birthday for that year. Choose one of the bestsellers from the list that comes up, read it and write about it.
I don't know how many of these I'll complete--I suppose it depends on whether I get happy surprises or not.
The next challenge I've selected is the Victorian Literature Challenge. The rules:
This challenge will run from 01 Jan 2011 - 31 Dec 2011.
Participants can sign up at any time throughout the year.
Read your Victorian literature.
Queen Victoria reigned from 1837-1901. If your book wasn't published during those particular years, but is by an author considered 'Victorian' then go for it. We're here for reading, not historical facts! Also, this can include works by authors from other countries, so long as they are from this period.
Literature comes in many forms.
There are so many Victorian reads out there, including novels, short stories, and poetry. One poem doesn't count as a 'book': pick up an anthology instead!
List your books before you begin, or pick up titles along the way. It's up to you! You can review them if you choose to, but it's not necessary. If you don't have a blog, that's fine! Link to a Facebook, or a page somewhere where you can list what you've been reading. If you can't link up, no problem - feel free to just comment and enjoy.
Spread the love.
Sense and Sensibility: 1-4 books.
Great Expectations: 5-9 books.
Hard Times: 10-14 books.
Desperate Remedies: 15+ books.
I'm not going to go for a very high level, but I'd like to challenge myself to read a Dickens novel or two that I've never read before, and more poetry. I might get very ambitious and try to read Tennyson's Idylls of the King, in keeping with all the Grail-ness I seem to have been reading lately. But that's the sort of thing I try read and then completely wilt under.
Here's the information for the 52 Books challenge for next year. She has included a bunch of mini-challenges, but I don't know how many I'll pursue. The rules:
A new year, a fresh slate. Time to discover some new friends and rediscover some old friends. Make the challenge as easy and casual as you want or spice it up and challenge yourself. Explore a bit, but most of all have fun.
The rules are very simple and the goal is to read one book (at least) a week for 52 weeks.
- The challenge will run from January 1, 2011 through December 31, 2011.
- Our book weeks will begin on Sunday.
- Participants may join at any time.
- All forms of books are acceptable including e-books, audio books, etc.
- Re-reads are acceptable as long as they are read after January 1, 2011.
- Books may overlap other challenges.
- Create an entry post linking to this blog.
- Come back and sign up with Mr. Linky in the "I'm participating post" below this post.
- You don't have a blog to participate. Post your weekly book in the comments section.
- Mr. Linky will be added to the bottom of the weekly post for you to link to reviews of your most current reads.
1) Mind Voyages is a science fiction / fantasy challenge to explore the hugo and nebula winners, take side trips through the different decades reading the nominees, check out Philip K. Dick and Robert Heinlein. Also, Since I can't possibly imagine a reading challenge without exploring new releases that come out in 2011, we have the all inclusive Pluto challenge. Links to all the voyages are available on the Mind Voyages blog.
A few of the titles that I have completely failed to blog about are:
Growing up Bin Laden, by Omar bin Laden and Jean Sasson
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl, by Harriet Jacobs
Nurtureshock, by Po Bronson
Death and Taxes, by Susan Dunlap
The Moonstone, by Wilkie Collins
I Shall Wear Midnight, by Terry Pratchett
The Place of the Lion and War in Heaven, by Charles Williams
A bunch of C. S. Lewis
The Way of Kings, by Brandon Sanderson (it's an ongoing project, since it's 1000 pages long)
Saturday, October 9, 2010
I ordered this several weeks ago and am hoping that my kids will enjoy reading the stories in it. It's quite long--over 400 pages--and has a complete retelling of every story in the original Faerie Queene. It's quite Edwardian in tone, and a good way to become familiar with the stories without actually having to read the epic poem.
This book is available in full-text online.
Sam I Am, by Ilene Cooper
Sam, a 7th grader, is having trouble figuring out his family this Christmas. The dog destroyed the Hanukkah bush and that has uncovered a whole lot of family tension around the subject of religion. Sam's dad is Jewish, but not at all active or willing to talk about it. His mom is Christian and goes to church sometimes, but Sam feels guilty going with her, feeling that it might upset his dad. The grandmothers don't get along. For years, the parents have avoided talking with each other or their kids about religion, and that hasn't really been working; now Sam is ignorant about both sides of his heritage and torn between his parents, unsure about how to make them happy or about what he wants. Sam is also trying to figure out school (where they're studying the Holocaust), boy/girl parties, and his first girlfriend.
I thought this book was really well-written and enjoyed it quite a lot. I would highly recommend it for kids 11 and over. There are very few children's novels that address religion at all, and the ones that do tend to be about evil religious extremists, so it's a relief to see a great book like Sam I Am, which realistically treats both Judaism and Christianity as faiths which ordinary people live because they think it's right and that it helps them.
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Saturday, September 18, 2010
The Maze Runner, by James Dashner
Thomas is dumped into the Maze with a wiped memory. He joins a crowd of boys who spend every day trying to find a way to escape their prison, which changes every night and has killer monsters as well. They've been trapped there for a couple of years, but just after Thomas' arrival, everything changes.
I really enjoyed this one, it was exciting and fast-moving, with a substantial plot. The sequel comes out in October!
Unwind, by Neal Shusterman
The Second Civil War was fought over the issue of abortion. In order to end the fighting, everyone compromises with the Bill of Life, which makes life inviolable from conception to age 13. However, from 13 to 18, a teenager may be sentenced to Unwinding--which isn't death, because every part of the body is preserved and transplanted. Connor's parents have signed the order to have him Unwound because he's always in trouble, Lev's parents raised him as a tithe--destined from birth for Unwinding--and Risa is a ward of the state, doomed by budget cuts. All 3 manage to escape and are living on the run, and their separate stories make up the plot.
It's an interesting premise (if totally farfetched, but dystopian plots have to be that!) and well-written. I liked it.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
I'm always interested in anything from India, and I've been wanting to read this study of the cultural meaning of the sari for quite some time. When I started working at Butte College, I was happy to find it in their collection. It's a great book, really interesting. It addresses the difficulties and pleasures of mastering the art of sari-wearing (and it really is not easy), the different ways it can be used, and the meaning of the sari as a somewhat political garment which has come to represent an ideal of Indian unity.
Wearing a sari well is difficult enough that being able to do it well lends you an image of dignity and power. So women in business wear what you could call 'power saris' which project their authority. At the same time, saris are standardized into uniforms all over the country; hostesses at hotels, policewomen, and even soldiers wear them. And again, most poor women wear saris to work as cleaners and fieldworkers and for all sorts of labor.
Saris are also symbols of marriage and maturity. Girls don't wear them, and there is a whole section on the popularity of the salwar kameez for teen girls. Most Indians would say that a woman is most beautiful and elegant in a sari--it is the most dignified and most feminine garment there is, instantly conferring romance and mystery. (You may notice in some Indian movies that a girl might start off in athletic or skimpy clothes, maturing into a love interest when she puts on the sari that shows her in a new light--Kuch Kuch Hota Hai is an example.)
So there was quite a lot to learn and I really enjoyed it. :)
Sunday, September 5, 2010
Friday, September 3, 2010
Saturday, August 28, 2010
Sunday, August 22, 2010
Who could resist reading this piece of fluff? My husband and I are fans of Castle, so of course I had to read this tie-in. (If you aren't familiar with it, Castle is a show featuring a mystery novelist who tags along with a New York City detective, and they solve murder cases. The writer then starts a new book series inspired by the detective, and this is supposed to be the book.) It's not wonderfully written, but what did you expect?
Heat Wave is exactly like an episode of the show; all the characters are there, they just have new names. Castle is turned into Jamieson Rook (ha!), a magazine writer. And Kate Beckett's character, the detective Nikki Heat, is written the way Castle would like her to be in his imagination. The device was both amusing and irritating, since I kept thinking that a real mystery writer would never just copy over every single character like that. The story does actually take place during a New York heat wave (which sounds much worse than summer here--another reason to love my town).
Children of the Company, by Kage Baker
Another installment in my new favorite SF series. I'm still loving it, and drawing it out slowly so I can enjoy it longer.
Saturday, August 14, 2010
We are on an Elizabeth Goudge kick around here! The Little White Horse is one of Goudge's children's books, and evidently it was one of her favorites. It is a lovely story, and what really stands out is the quality of the writing. It is just beautifully written, and makes most modern children's books look cardboardy and mass-produced by comparison.
The story itself is not unusual--a young orphan arrives at her ancestral home and finds that she has a mystery to unravel and a quest to solve. The difference is in the writing; it is done so well. I don't understand why this book isn't at the top of lists of children's classics. The sad thing about this particular edition is that it does not include the illustrations or cover art, which were done by C. Walter Hodges (an eminent writer and illustrator of children's books, especially historical fiction)--and the book is actually dedicated to him!
I will be searching out more of Goudge's children's books--at the moment I'm coveting Linnets and Valerians and I saw Three Ships. I see a purchase from abebooks in my future...
In the meantime, give this book to your daughter.
The Core: teaching your child the foundations of classical education, by Leigh Bortins
Bortins is the author of Classical Conversations, a homeschooling curriculum that I am not very familiar with. The Core focuses on classical homeschooling, especially the grammar stage (that is, the foundational knowledge for any discipline, not just English grammar). There is a lot of emphasis on memorization of basic facts and otherwise relaxing. It's a pretty good book worth reading, but for myself I really prefer the Well-Trained Mind approach.
Saturday, August 7, 2010
Thursday, August 5, 2010
Saturday, July 31, 2010
This is really a high-school level textbook on writing, but it's quite different from what you would find in most schools. D'Angelo follows the classical system called the progymnasmata, which is a systematic graded series of exercises in rhetoric, meant to develop one skill at a time. Those of us used to the modern way of teaching writing find the classical system to be rather strange; who knew that rhetorical techniques could be mapped out on a graph and strictly classified? But that is exactly what the progymnasmata do. I think that aspect of it would really appeal to more analytic types who find it difficult to wade through the frustratingly indefinite discipline of writing, so if your child is that sort, I recommend giving this system a try.
Lilith, by George MacDonald
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Saturday, July 17, 2010
Demick profiles six people who lived under the North Korean regime in this description of ordinary life in the most closed society on earth. It covers a good bit of history before getting detailed during the famines of the 1990's. It's a good book worth reading, but not exactly cheerful--if you're looking for information about North Korea it's a good overview.
Duplicate Death, by Georgette Heyer
I always enjoy Heyer's historical fiction, and have been wanting to read some of her detective novels, so I was happy to run across this. It's very much in the mold of the Christie/Marsh/Sayers tradition. Heyer puts in lots of her trademark slangy dialogue and the story is reasonably well-written, but the plot has an unfortunate minor sideline about homosexuality that modern readers won't care for. So perhaps a different title would be a better choice if you're looking to read a Georgette Heyer mystery, but if you like this style of mystery story, she's worth picking up.
Saturday, July 10, 2010
Saturday, July 3, 2010
In Search of London, by H. V. Morton
I am so glad my mom found this book for me. H. V. Morton is the latest addition to my list of all-time favorite writers, and I must find more of what he wrote. Morton was a popular writer and broadcaster who won fame as a young man when he scooped the discovery of King Tut's tomb in 1922. He did quite a bit of travel writing, and I plan to read the rest of it.
In In Search of London, Morton simply wanders around the great sights of London narrating history and fascinating little tidbits of information. He ranges from the City to the West End to Hampton Court. He visits the Romans, the Cavaliers, and everyone else. There are stories about Nelson, scholars, pensioners, Madame Tussaud (who had a much more interesting life than most of the people she modelled), and Anne Boleyn. The book dates from 1951; Elizabeth is a princess and London is recovering from the war, with burned-out shells of buildings still standing and rationing yet in force.
If you are an Anglophile at all, this book is a must-read. It's wonderful for keeping at your bedside to dip into every evening, so you can prolong it as long as possible. The main trouble with it is that it makes you long to visit London--and, as my mom said, preferably the London of about 1930.
Alchemy and Meggy Swann, by Karen Cushman
Cushman's new historical novel is well worth reading. I always enjoy her books, though I usually don't much care for historical fiction; her characters are actual natives of their time, with realistic lives. Far too much historical fiction stars a spunky heroine with modern sensibilities, who finds her adventure by disguising herself as a boy and running off to play Shakespeare's Puck. Or something like that, anyway. Cushman writes about ordinary girls--often down on their luck--who overcome their problems with wit and tenacity, in a completely realistic way.
Oh yes, the plot. Meggy is a girl who is sent to London to live with her father, an alchemist whom she has never met. He wants an unpaid servant and is dismayed to find her female and crippled. She is left almost to herself to get around the city, make friends, and figure out how to work (and eat). Then she has to face a moral dilemma and build a life for herself.
Saturday, June 26, 2010
This must be something like number 35 in the Discworld series, but Pterry is still going pretty strong. Discworld started off as funny fantasy, poking a bit of fun at the standard tropes, and has matured into social satire that is both entertaining and insightful. Here's hoping that Discworld will continue as long as possible.
Saturday, June 19, 2010
Saturday, June 12, 2010
Quiverfull, by Kathryn Joyce
I don't think that many people in my area of the world know very much about the Quiverfull movement. Lately I've been interested in understanding it, and the tragic Schatz case made me feel more strongly that this is something more of us should be aware of. Quiverfull is one term for a growing movement among very conservative Protestants, which emphasizes wifely submission, male headship, and "openness" to children, which can frequently translate to having as many as physically possible because it's a sign of righteousness. Adherents also homeschool, try to live as self-sufficiently as possible, and are usually quite isolationist. Women bear the heavy burdens that go with the lifestyle--but wives are also frequently the ones who are attracted to it in the first place and who pull their husbands in.
Joyce explains some of the history behind the movement and the major players. This was very helpful to me since, as a homeschooler, I have often heard some of the names mentioned before but was ignorant of exactly who they were. I've seen Vision Forum at conventions and seen their catalog (full of amazingly sexist toys for children), but I didn't know that the leader, Doug Phillips, preaches an extreme form of submission, advising girls to stay home and serve their fathers until marriage, and to submit not only to their fathers but also their brothers, regardless of age. Nor did I know that the woman who designs Sense and Sensibility patterns (which I have purchased in the past) also writes for Vision Forum! So the book really helped me to make sense of all the small glimpses I've had.
Joyce does not comment very much on the people she describes. She just quotes them and lets them explain themselves, without giving very much of her own opinion. This is just fine, and I think perhaps too much commentary would have been superfluous. She also interviews a couple of women who were prominent in the Quiverfull world but have since left. Leaving is quite a long and painful process for many women, who often find themselves penniless and without job skills, with many children to feed.
I appreciated this overview of the Quiverfull movement and would recommend it to those trying to understand patriarchalist fundamentalists.
The Red Pyramid, by Rick Riordan
Rick Riordan is kicking off a new mythology-based series, and our book club decided to read it for a fun summer book this month. It's the story of two siblings, raised separately, who find themselves forced to work together in the middle of a crisis of the Egyptian gods. Their father has been captured by Set, and they must try to restore ma'at (cosmic order) and stop Set from unleashing chaos across the world. I quite enjoyed it, although it seemed a bit over-long --over 500 pages.