Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Another Dozen

The three colleges I am affiliated with started this week so in at least one way summer is over, but the summer reading list continues on. I'm so so close! So here we go:

Penguins and Golden Calves: Icons and Idols
Troubling a Star was written from L'Engle's real life trip to Antarctica. This book was inspired by her meditations on that voyage. From the life and theology lessons she learned from the penguins she looked at other images, things, oddities that she has encountered in life that teach her a deeper truth. In this way, she more deeply delves into this idea of story as the primary vehicle for truth. Good read, but again some questionable theology.

From here on in the L'Engle oeuvre, we get a lot of compilations and collaborative projects. It's understandable, the woman is 78. But it's also repetitious. L'Engle often meditates on Christmas time so this work complies some of those excerpts, some new stuff, and the same sort of writing from her friend and editor, Luci Shaw. It was very well done and of her Christmas works, this is that one I want.

Bright Evening Star
Probably the best I can say for this book is that I am obviously suffering from L'Engle memoir burnout. It was okay, but not her best collection of non-fiction prose. And since it dealt so much with the incarnation, I'd read a lot of it in Wintersong.

Friends for the Journey
Another collaborative project with Luci Shaw. I think she's another author I need to check out. They transcribe some of their discussions on friendship, share stories and poems and recipes. It's all very sweet. It's the retirement I want to have.

Mothers and Daughters
A collaborative project with her daughter Maria Rooney. This is her second project with Maria. In Anytime Prayers, L'Engle supplied the text and Maria found the pictures so in this project they reversed. Madeleine wrote text for pictures Maria provided. Very sweet.

Miracle on 10th Street
Another Christmas compilation. This time it was all L'Engle. And it was fine. It had some new work, but I preferred Wintersong.

A Full House
A children's Christmas story (or maybe better a family read-aloud-story) which was featured in Wintersong and Miracle on 10th Street. I read it quickly, but I liked it. It's an Austin chronicle and their family is awfully amazing. Madeleine often says she's Vicky out of the Austins, but I think particularly in this story she is Mrs. Austin. Mrs. Austin is the narrator and reacts to the challenges of a busy chaotic Christmas evening much in the same way L'Engle would. Not to disagree with an author; she was speaking to a situation that was not this one.

Mothers and Sons

See Mothers and Daughters.

A Prayerbook for Spiritual Friends
A collaboration with Luci Shaw. Again very well put together. I'm not sure their original intent--that friends use this book to prayer together--really works. They are obviously Luci and Madeleine and have a different dynamic than I have with my friends. But it is a shining example of the love and support friends can give each other each in friendships that have Christ running through them.

Bed of Roses
A Nora Roberts novel snuck in. I can't help it. I love the Bride Quartet. They describe weddings and it's lovely. I picked up the audiobook for the first installment on a day of driving, but it was abridged (and took out things about all the weddings!!!) so I didn't count it. :-) Also first book I read on my nook! It was lovely. Big fan. I need all my books on my nook.

The Other Dog
A L'Engle children's book. Actually my favorite L'Engle children's book. It's about her dog Touche when she brought baby Jo home from the hospital. It's endearing and funny and totally in L'Engle's voice. Also, another first, I checked this book out, sat down, read it in the library, and returned it. Quickest turn around ever!

Madeleine L'Engle Herself
A compilation of her thoughts on writing gathered from her books and her lectures at Wheaton. Since I had read all her books, I read the parts that were from the lectures. (There was a handy index!) It was really good. Once I get some more distance from her writing, I'll probably go back and soak in it more.

And here we are all caught up. Two L'Engle books left. Still five liminality books to go. But goodness, I stalled out hard on the liminality books. I actually put down a book in the middle of the chapter. Ouch! I love the topic; my brain just isn't used to the academic work out. Still I'll go back. It's just going to be a Fall project. Still--94 out of the 99 books I wanted to read this summer is not bad.

My total so far for books read this year: 151!

1 comment:

MissouriGirl said...

Congratulations on your dozen!! Concise and engaging summaries. How did I miss The Other Dog?