Nicole’s Book Club

I don’t know what your favourite books are, but I can tell you what mine aren’t: Scooby Doo Early Reader Mysteries. I made a grave error in ordering a package of nine (nine!) from Scholastic Books and as a result have been reading the most boring, mind-numbing series of books that were ever written. Oh no! Ghosts! No, it’s just some leaves blowing in the wind. Fortunately I also ordered a book about volcanoes, which has proved popular but not as popular as Shaggy and the gang. However, I want my boys to be readers, so whatever boring tripe (ahem, I mean stories) catch their attention is really fine with me.

I love reading; I have always been an avid reader. However, sometimes it’s hard for me to get into a mindset to read a new book. Lately I’ve just needed the comfort of an old favourite, and so the past three books I’ve read have been just that. I have Slumdog Millionaire sitting on my bookshelf, just waiting for me to start it, but I just haven’t been in the mood for something new. This is what I have been reading in the past few weeks:

The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood. This may be my favourite book of all time. I always get caught up in the love story, the historical drama, and the complex plot. There is just something so pleasing about the privileged, married, rich girl having an illicit affair with the communist/ pulp fiction writer-on-the-run. Sigh. My favourite line in the book is when Iris, looking at the painting of her grandmother, thinks “I bet you were alleycatting all along. I bet you had a secret life. I bet it kept you going”.

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. I picked this up the other day as I took a Facebook quiz – Which Jane Austen Character Are You? – and my result was Jane Bennett. Damn! I had been hoping for Elizabeth; I always thought of Jane as kind of a drip. P&P is probably the wittiest book ever written, I never tire of it. Also, Mr. Darcy. Ah, Mr. Darcy. “You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you”. Rrrr. Rrrr in that whole repressed, nineteenth century way. My opinion of Jane Bennett hasn’t changed though, she’s still a sap. Well, as my sister-in-law said, at least my quiz result wasn’t Marianne Dashwood, the mentally unstable, dying-of-consumption-since-Willoughby-married-someone-else heroine who ends up a broken-spirited wife to the old Colonel. Of course, that old Colonel was very attractively portrayed by Alan Rickman in the film version, so that wouldn’t have been all that bad.

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. Isn’t this the classic of all classics? I never read this in school; in fact I didn’t read this until I was in my twenties. The descriptions of the town, the people, and especially the living conditions are fascinating and depressing at the same time. I get a lump in my throat every single time I read the ending. Best line? “I thought Jem and I would get grown but there wasn’t much else for us to learn, except possibly algebra”.

Your turn! What have you been reading lately, and what would you recommend?


  1. Um, let’s see: The Complete Tightwad Gazette, Secrets of a Lady (trashy historical fiction!), Katherine’s Junie B. Jones and Magic Treehouse books so I know what she’s reading, and I’m almost always rereading a Dick Francis or Robert B. Parker mystery or an L.M. Montgomery book. Or a Diana Gabaldon book.

    I’ll stop now.

  2. One of these days, I’m going to write a What Jane Austen Character Are you quiz and the results will all be awful characters, like Lizzie Bennet and Caroline Bingley.

    What am I reading? I read The Mysterious Benedict Society yesterday. A+!

  3. I know exactly which “Scooby Doo” books you are referring to…argh.

    I am reading “The Audacity of Hope” by Barack Obama,”Peace Not Apartheid” by Jimmy Carter, “Arnie the Doughnut”, “Alice in Wonderland”, “Henry and Ribsy” and periodically, those “Scooby Doo” books.

  4. Hey! Thanks for the tag on the mother’s day note. This first year as a mom has been interesting, full of amazement and stress. I have felt guilty about continuing to work, but knowing i would be resentful if I didn’t. With #2 on the way and likely a move back to Houston I am really unsure what I will be doing. Part of me wants to stay home and part of me is deathly afraid of how that will go. …so we’ll see i guess.

    But this note was about your book club. I have recently read four fantastic books which I highly recommend: Women of the Silk, Three Cups of Tea (non-fiction), The Time Traveller’s Wife and Water for Elephants. Jeju is currently reading this massive book called Shantaram which he can’t seem to put down so that is next on my list.

    Hope your soccer practice gets cancelled!!

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