Week 28: The Bird in the Tree and Road to Serfdom
The Bird in the Tree, by Elizabeth Goudge
I discovered Elizabeth Goudge last year, and this is the 4th or 5th book of hers I have read. I really enjoy them, and if you like somewhat old-fashioned (30's-50's) books set in England which evince a deep faith, you will probably enjoy them as well. Many of her books are out of print, but they are worth hunting down, and she also wrote several well-regarded children's books that I wish I could find.
This book turned out to be the first in a family-saga type of trilogy (which I do not usually go for), and I had already read the second one without realizing there were others. In order, they are: The Bird in the Tree, Pilgrim's Inn, and The Heart of the Family. The drama revolves around three generations of the Eliot family; the grandmother, Lucilla, establishes a home in the country that she intends as a haven of peace for all of her descendants.
The Road to Serfdom, by F. A. Hayek
This one took me quite a while; it's the kind of book you need to read in a quiet library with no distractions, and of course that isn't easy to come by. I kept trying to read it while the kids had kung fu.
The Road to Serfdom was written during World War II and is addressed to the British people. Hayek, an economist, was concerned at all the political talk in the UK (and the rest of Western Europe) about the need for planning and collectivism. He believed that socialism and economic planning would lead directly to totalitarianism, and in this book he explains exactly why. In his view only classical liberalism and individualism could lead to freedom, and all talk of better freedom under planning was an illusion.
It's a very interesting (and often prescient) book, and it's considered a classic in the field of economics, so I'm counting it as a classic. Hayek is certainly worth reading, but it's not easy going.