Sunday, March 23, 2008

Dead Heat, Mrs. Pollifax, and Carl Sandberg

Finished Dead Heat last night and it is every bit as suspenseful as any of his books. The chef makes a fine showing, and like other Dick Francis protagonists, is intelligent, inspiring, and an all-around good guy. Some really wonderful moments in this book, which I won't ruin for you by describing here.

Read Mrs. Pollifax on the China Station by Dorothy Gilman this morning. She's another one of my favorite authors and as always, her books have a nice blend of philosophy of life, suspenseful plots, wonderful bits of derring-do, and great descriptions of foreign places. I loved her descriptions of China, and admired her adroit explanation of what to eat & what NOT to eat in foreign countries. Well worth reading, if only for the fact that she believes no matter what age you are, you can still live life to the fullest. I've read Gilman's memoir & it is an excellent one, all about her life in Nova Scotia (I think that's where she was?) and the pace & healing she got there.

Third & last book I read this morning is a picture book, called A Love Poem by Carl Sandburg, pictures by Anita Lobel. Anita is a Caldecott Honor Book artist & her illustrations are wonderful. She has an interesting back history as well. The poem in question is something Carl wrote for his wife Lena, and is about 6the aurora borealis. Wonderful blend of poetry & illustrations in this one. I picked up the book at the Sandburg's place in Flat Rock, North Carolina, where they retired so Lena could raise goats. The descendants of those goats are still there (I patted them), and the place is lovely, full of books on every single wall (including the staircases). The joke told by the Park Service Ranger was something about Biltmore being down the road & how different the two places were. Would love to have the Sandburg's house & start reading my way through all of Mr. Sandburg's books. Picture above is from the NPS website.

Have to head out now to buy Annie her replacement Da Bird feather toy, since she's succeeded in annihilating her latest one. Am going to look for Panic Mouse too, because I think she would love it, although I admit that the little plastic toy that does backflips, causes her to sit down & glare at it intensely. I think she is either a little afraid of it or offended by it, perhaps both.

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