Saturday, December 10, 2016

Back and Forth in Time

All my recent reads do a little time traveling:  The People of the Book works backward in time, tracing the history of a rare illuminated haggadah from its present day status in the hands of a curious conservator who wonders just what various inclusions in the binding and marks on the parchment mean. The butterfly wing, the fine white hair, the missing clasps, the stains of blood, salt, and wine all have their stories to tell. And while the diligent conservator learns quite a bit, through the marvel of the novelist's story-telling, the reader learns the whole, fascinating story of this marvelous book and its travels and its preservation by a cast of characters that include Muslims and Christians, as well as Jews. From modern day Sarajevo back to 15th century Spain

I loved this book -- as I always love historical fiction that adds to my knowledge.

(Psst! It's only 1.99 on Kindle  )

Conversely, Alice Hoffman's The Red Garden travels from the founding of a lonely, magic-touched New England village through the centuries to the present day. Wonderful characters and description in Hoffman's lovely prose.  (And it's another blue light special for Kindle.)

Currently I'm a little ways into Jasper Fforde's second Thursday Next adventure and am finding it lots of fun -- even if some of the allusions escape me. Somehow this is my first Fforde book though I've had them recommended to me often.
And the time travel here is backwards, forwards, and sideways. Probably some other ways too.  As I say, lots of fun!
(This too is 1.99 for Kindle -- do you see a pattern emerging?)


Barbara Rogers said...

Oh goodie, goodie! I never run out of books when you're around to recommend some. I just finished Life after Life, by Kate Atkinson, a strangely satisfying book with a different twist on reincarnation.

Frances said...

Vicki, you might already know that I love to read. What I do wonder sometimes is if I could every bring myself to read a book via Kindle. There is just something about the ceremony of holding a book (old or brand new) looking at the design of the cover and the book ends, and the type face and the weight of the paper and how the edges of the pages were or raggedy, and so on and on, that make me prefer physically reading a book that is a book.

And yet, if I were in your place in that long rehab stay, I might change my mind, and embrace the gift of Kindle.

Alice Hoffman's writing I know and like. The same is true of Jasper Fforde. I've not read either of the books you show here. Will do eventually, when I close the doors on my current stay in Santa's workshop preparing for Christmas.

Isn't reading wonderful! xo

Victoria said...

"The Red Garden" is one of my favorite Alice Hoffman books.

How exciting that you get to go home next Wednesday! Crossing my fingers that all goes well and nothing puts any obstacles in the way.

Vicki Lane said...

Re Kindle -- I was one of those who felt that only a 'real' book would do. Then my kids gave me a Kindle for Christmas and I was amazed to find how quickly I forgot anything but the story I was reading. Now that our house is overflowing with real books, I'm happy to have a way to own a book without having to find it shelf space.

My only complaint with the Kindle is that it's not easy to turn back to reread something -- possible, but not easy.

And for this extended stay in rehab, to have so many books at my fingertips is marvelous. Plus, with a dislocated shoulder, holding a 'real' book would have been uncomfortable.