Literary Quote of the Month

"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies," said Jojen. "The man who never reads lives only one." - George R.R. Martin, A Dance With Dragons

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

April is National Poetry Month... read any good poems lately?


April is National Poetry Month! People seem to have a love/hate relationship with poetry. Either you enjoy it or you can't be bothered. There are all sorts of types of poetry, from Shakespeare's sonnets to more contemporary written poems, such as Amanda Gordon's poem to the Nation... Free verse, Rhymed, Epics, Lyrical, Haiku, Blank verse...

Though I do enjoy reading the Romantics of the late 18th and early 19th century, some of my favorite poets are from the 20th and 21st century. Let me share some of my favorite poets today...

Billy Collins, Mary Oliver, Donald Hall, Jo Harjo, Nikki Giovanni, Seamus Heaney, Wistawa Szymborska, Marge Piercy, Tracy K. Smith, Julia Hartwig, Jane Kenyon, Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost,  Federico GarcĂ­a Lorca, and Donna Marie Merritt.

Recently found poets I like... Catherine Cohen, Amanda Gordon, Joumana Haddad.

Poetry Collections that I like... Good Poems by Garrison Keillor, She Walks in Beauty: A Woman's Journey through Poems by Caroline Kennedy, and Poems to Learn by Heart by Caroline Kennedy.

Here is a photo of some of my favorite poetry books too. I have them lying around the house to be picked up and enjoyed whenever the mood strikes.

But, how do you pick out a book of poetry? You open up one and read a poem or two.. maybe more. To get a feel for the poem and the poet... Does it speak to you? Can you relate to its' subject matter? Do you just like it? 


Monday, April 26, 2021

Memoir Monday...

 “I have been buried under years of dust and now I have so much to say.” 

These were the first words twenty-five-year-old Emily Grodin ever wrote. Born with nonverbal autism, Emily’s only means of communicating for a quarter of a century had been only one-word responses or physical gestures. That Emily was intelligent had never been in question—from an early age she’d shown clear signs that she understood what was going on though she could not express herself. Her parents, Valerie and Tom, sought every therapy possible in the hope that Emily would one day be able to reveal herself. When this miraculous breakthrough occurred, Emily was finally able to give insight into the life, frustrations, and joys of a person with autism. She could tell her parents what her younger years had been like and reveal all the emotions and intelligence residing within her; she became their guide into the autistic experience. Told by Valerie, with insights and stories and poetry from Emily, I Have Been Buried Under Years of Dust highlights key moments of Emily’s childhood that led to her communication awakening—and how her ability rapidly accelerated after she wrote that first sentence. As Valerie tells her family’s story, she shares the knowledge she’s gained from working as a legal advocate for families affected by autism and other neurological disorders. 

This sounds like such an interesting and important book. And a sad fact that for many years, there were a lot of misconceptions about people with autism. I am curious what the breakthrough was and if it could be a means to help others. Recently published by William Morrow, I Have Been Buried Under Years of Dust by Valerie Gilpeer & Emily Grodin is available at your local bookstore, and is on my wishlist to read.

Sunday, April 18, 2021

The Sunday Salon Reading list for April...

Welcome to The Sunday Salon! It's been a few months since we've talked, but there were still books to be read and authors to be appreciated! What have I been reading? Not a heck of a lot. I feel like I've been hibernating along with the bears and the birds that find a cave to hide in or fly South. And since I already live in the South, these birds fly South "er". But with the warm weather comes the urge to crack the spine of a book and immerse myself in a different place and meet new people...

This week something special came in the mail from one of my favorite authors, Sheila Roberts! Sheila sent along a copy of her new book, Sunset on Moonlight Beach! Here's the publishers blurb...

"Jenna Jones has been standing on the shore of the Sea of Love for too long. Even with two good men interested in her, she's been afraid to wade in. According to her best friend, Courtney, she should. The water’s fine. Life is great! Practically perfect, if you don’t count Courtney’s problems with her cranky ex-boss. Maybe Courtney’s right. It’s time to dive in. When tragedy strikes, everything changes and Jenna's more confused than ever. But this fresh heartache might help her figure out at last who she can turn to when times get tough."

Sheila always writes wonderful romance novels that have great storylines behind them. This book is the 5th in her Moonlight Harbor Series and I am sure it will not disappoint us fans or first time readers! Mark your calendar for April 27th because that's when you can purchase the Kindle version or paperback!

This week I also have lined up our reading groups selection which is The Babbling Brook Naked Poker Club by Ann Warner...

"In Book One of this cozy mystery series, a morose parrot with a reputation for biting sums up Brookside Retirement Community for reluctant resident, Josephine Bartlett. But when Brookside turns out to be a setting for art theft, dodgy dealings, and naked poker it becomes vastly more interesting. Josephine investigates the unusual goings on with friend and handwriting expert, Lill Fitzel. And the two befriend a young woman Josephine tries to prevent from making the same mistakes she has made."

This is a cozy mystery that sounds like a nice fun light read. As it says in the blurb above, it is book 1 of the series and if you enjoy reading it, there are 4 more in the series. This first book is FREE on Kindle right now, so if you like cozy mysteries, you should definitely download it because you have nothing to lose!

And if those two books weren't enough to whet your interest, this one will definitely do it...

Are you ready?... Are you an Outlander fan?....

Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone by Diana Gabalson, book 9 of the Outlander series, is coming this November! 

"The past may seem the safest place to be . . . but it is the most dangerous time to be alive. . .  Jamie Fraser and Claire Randall were torn apart by the Jacobite Rising in 1743, and it took them twenty years to find each other again. Now the American Revolution threatens to do the same... It is 1779 and Claire and Jamie are at last reunited with their daughter, Brianna, her husband, Roger, and their children on Fraser’s Ridge. Having the family together is a dream the Frasers had thought impossible... Yet even in the North Carolina backcountry, the effects of war are being felt. Tensions in the Colonies are great and local feelings run hot enough to boil Hell’s tea-kettle. Jamie knows loyalties among his tenants are split and it won’t be long until the war is on his doorstep... Brianna and Roger have their own worry: that the dangers that provoked their escape from the twentieth century might catch up to them. Sometimes they question whether risking the perils of the 1700s—among them disease, starvation, and an impending war—was indeed the safer choice for their family... Not so far away, young William Ransom is still coming to terms with the discovery of his true father’s identity—and thus his own—and Lord John Grey has reconciliations to make, and dangers to meet . . . on his son’s behalf, and his own... Meanwhile, the Revolutionary War creeps ever closer to Fraser’s Ridge. And with the family finally together, Jamie and Claire have more at stake than ever before."

I have almost read thru the Outlander series, and then watched the Starz series with much delight, but I am so excited to see a new book in the series! And actually the television series will continue eventually too. I just love this time traveling story and the history it lives in. What about you?

So, what new books have you been reading?  

Do you get the urge to read more in the warmer weather?

April is also National Poetry Month! Have you been reading any poetry? I have and we'll talk more about it in the week ahead. I've got some great new poetry books I think you might enjoy...

Until then... Happy Reading... Suzanne

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