Lake Waban in Massachusetts June 2017

My favorite place to walk in the Boston area

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Mid-June Reading and Ron Rash

Reading, eating, and breathing--in that order. The bare essentials of life, and without them my life feels out of control and downright crazy. (Work implodes.) So my highest priority has to be to hoist myself up onto the book train again.

I finished Touch Not the Cat by Mary Stewart, enjoyed it tremendously, and will write a brief blog post about it sometime in the next few days.

And what am I taking breaks to read at the moment? I fell into reading Fiercombe Manor by Kate Riordan, another gothic novel. The original UK title was The Girl in the Photograph. When I looked Riordan up on the Web, I discovered she's written a number of other books that sound as though they'd be perfect for my future contemporary gothic forays.

My next Classics Club read is O Pioneers! by Willa Cather. I'm looking forward to quieting my brain just enough so I can dig into this wonderful novel about settlers on the Great Plains. I know I've mentioned that I'd soon be reading this two months ago, but my rabbit-hole was cavernous.

I've been waiting and wanting to read a novel by the American and Appalachian writer Ron Rash for some time. (The link provides access to an interview with Rash.)  Most of his novels are set in wilderness or near wilderness and have themes related to the land and the wilds and rural America. I'm going to read Serena first, for which Rash won the PEN/Faulkner Award about 5 or 6 years ago. Serena is now or recently has been made into a motion picture. Rash's Above the Waterfall appeared this year, but I'm putting that one on hold, even though its story line is compelling. Rash is considered to be one of the country's best writers and poets. And he was born in that great vintage year 1953...


  1. This is the second mention of Mary Stewart I've seen this morning. I've only read one of her books, but it was memorable. O Pioneers! is a favorite, too - enjoy!

    1. All of her books have come out in new paperback editions within the last 5-10 years or so. I've loved them all, with the exception of The Moon-Spinners, which, by the way was made into a movie by Walt Disney, starring Hayley Mills. But all the rest are so very good, so worthwhile.

  2. I'll have a short blogpost up about Touch Not the Cat sometime this weekend too. Jack agrees about 1953 being a vintage year.

    1. Looking forward to your thoughts. I'll be interested someday to find the month and day Jack was born. I have the "pride" of being born on the day that Sir Edmund Hillary claimed was the day he reached the top of Mt. Everest. But I always wondered, did he pick that day because Elizabeth's coronation was the day preceding? Who would know? Well, I'll claim it anyway.