The Week In Books, No. 36

I thoroughly enjoyed Animal, Vegetable, Miracle
by Barbara Kingsolver. Although Kingsolver and I have some differences of opinion, and she has a slightly different worldview than I do, her thoughts on the importance of local sustainable agriculture, and the health benefits of eating locally-grown organic foods, are worth reading.

The book is partially Kingsolver’s memoir of the first year her family experimented with eating ONLY locally-grown foods. The main emphasis became eating foods in season, and preserving things for use during the winter. Each section describes a season, how they ate during that season, and gives recipes they liked for seasonal foods. Kingsolver’s husband and older daughter contributed sidebar articles covering their perspectives.

In addition to being a memoir, Animal, Vegetable, Miracle
also taught me a lot about gardening and interesting facts about different foods. For example, this book contains everything you might ever have wanted to know about asparagus.

True confession time: I’m not a good gardener. I stink at it, I don’t have patience for it, I don’t make time for it. I need to work on those things. However, the book did inspire me to shop for more local foods, and to eat seasonally as a way to stretch the grocery budget. So far so good, I’ll keep you posted.

For some reason, I thought The Blood of Flowers
was our book club book for this month, then I realized the book club is actually covering Reading Lolita in Tehran
. Both are books about Iran, so perhaps my mistake was forgivable. I’ll review the actual book club selection next week. In the meantime, “The Blood of Flowers” was not a total waste. It was actually pretty good, on a beach read type level. There were some sections in the book that I thought went into a little too much detail about a couple’s married life. I mean, I’m not against that totally in books, but in this case I was like, “ALL RIGHT, I GET IT, THEY ARE PHYSICALLY COMPATIBLE, CAN WE PLEASE MOVE ON!!?!?!?!?” My only other criticism is that at times I felt the author was giving her character modern sensibilities that a woman in seventeenth century Persia probably wouldn’t have had. That’s a common failing in historical fiction. Still, the book was interesting and fast-paced, and I learned a lot about carpets and seventeenth century Iran. It’s worth checking out of the library.

I decided that 301 Simple Things You Can Do to Sell Your Home
is the last book I’m going to read on how to sell your house, at least for now. I’m a little burned out on the subject, and all the books seem to have basically the same tips. This one also had typos, so that was it’s distinguishing factor.

Is there a serious shortage of editors out there, or what?

I got a few good tips from this book, but not many, and I think that the more books I read on this topic, the more the returns diminish, so I will now let my inner dilettante loose on other topics of interest!

Also Completed:

Currently Reading:
Psalms, Isaiah, John, Acts

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