Monday, 3 August 2015

New on the Stack in July

June was all about reading the books I had been 'saving for later' earlier in the year, but in July I went to the other extreme...

Linking up with Sheila at the Deliberate Reader.

Travel books galore

I got a lot of travel books, all for pretty much the same reason: they looked interesting, and reading a good travel book is a bit like taking a trip yourself.

Christopher Somerville: The golden step: a walk through the heart of Crete

Somerville is a travel writer, but this time he went to Crete to travel for pleasure, not for work. (It was sort of a 50th birthday gift from his wife.) It is apparent that he knows the country pretty well from previous visits, but on this walking trip, he also finds places and experiences that are new to him.

Rob Lilwall: Walking Home from Mongolia: ten million steps through China, from the Gobi Desert to the South China Sea

I enjoyed Lilwall's earlier book (Cycling Home from Siberia). This sounded just as promising. I like his blend of British humour, funny adventures and heart-searching.

Walking through China is something I am not likely to attempt myself, ever - so I'm glad I can read about someone else taking on the adventure.

  Griff Rhys Jones: Rivers: a voyage into the heart of Britain

Griff Rhys Jones writes about making a TV series on British rivers. 
(I haven't seen the series, but the book makes it sound pretty interesting.)

A mixture of history, geography, adventures with various means of transportation etc., humour, personal reminiscences... And a dog named Cadbury. :) (A chocolate Labrador. Of course.)

Not just travel - expatriate experiences

All borrowed from the library.
Why: As with travel books, I find it interesting to learn more about other countries through someone's personal experiences.

 Mailis Hudilainen: Minu Peterburi
 Ede Schank Tamkivi: Minu California

Two books from the same series: Estonian expats write about their experiences in a particular place. These ones are about St Petersburg and California. (I've never been to California, and the last time I was in St Petersburg, it was still called Leningrad...)

Saara Ojanen: Mekongin mutkassa (Along the Mekong river)

A Finnish NGO worker's experiences in Cambodia, from the 1980's to the present days. I know very little about Cambodia, and hope to learn more from this book.

Other library finds

 Susan Cain: Quiet: the power of introverts in a world that can't stop talking

Why: I'm an introvert, and I was interested in this book after reading many recommendations. My thoughts on the book here.

Jacqueline Woodson: Brown Girl Dreaming

Why: This caught my eye in the new titles list at the library website, probably because I've read some very positive reviews on it. (Moreover, I was glad to find a poetry book for the reading challenges - this is "a genre I don't typically read.")

Kindle purchases
I snapped up a couple of special offers:

Rachel Friedman: The Good Girl's Guide to Getting Lost: A Memoir of Three Continents, Two Friends, and One Unexpected Adventure

Why: Sounded intriguing. (See other travel and expat books...)

Karen Ehman: Keep It Shut: What to Say, How to Say It, and When to Say Nothing at All

Why: I listened to an interview with Karen Ehman about choosing our words wisely on the Focus on the Family Daily podcast during our holiday trip. (Talk about good timing...) 
I know this is a topic I really need to think about more. 

Joni Eareckson Tada: A Place of Healing: Wrestling with the Mysteries of Suffering, Pain, and God's Sovereignty

Why: I'm sure that what Joni Eareckson Tada has to say on this topic is worth reading.


  1. Oh man. That Keep It Shut book sounds like something I probably ought to read... although I'm not sure that I *want* to. :)

    Found you via Sheila's link-up!

    1. Thanks for commenting!
      I'm about halfway through Ehman's book, and it's been good so far. She writes what she has learned and is still working on to put into practice as someone who struggles with the "foot-in-the-mouth disorder" herself. I'll try to write more about the book when I've finished it.

  2. I bought Brown Girl Dreaming at a scholastic book fair at school for my daughter and I to read and just haven't gotten to it yet. I am also interested in Keep It Shut. Karen Ehman has lots of wonderful insights that I appreciate.

  3. I need to get back to Brown Girl Dreaming - I started it but it got pushed aside in favor of some other books with hard deadlines. :(

    And Walking Home from Mongolia sounds like one I'd love - just my sort of travel book!