Sunday, June 17, 2012

{Reading Challenges: Week 25}

Week 25!? Sheesh....I am way behind. I have been reading a lot though, so it isn't for a lack of material.

Under The Tuscan Sun - Frances Mayes
There is simply nothing about this book that I don't like. I have been in love with everything Italian or French lately and Under The Tuscan Sun does not disappoint. I have listened to the book before but equally enjoyed it this time. (On a side note: I LOVE the movie as well, but one really has nothing to do with the other).
Francis litters her book with mouth watering recipes and descriptions of their daily dietary endeavors. I have a slight fascination with olive oil these days and despite it's price tag, I simply can't bring myself to cook our food in that yellow vegetable crud.
Every word of her book makes you want to jump ship and buy a little cottage in Tuscany complete with 12" wood ceiling beams and brick floors. Surely you can stand the chaos and frustration of dealing with the local builders if the final result is a sunny, warm, fragrant kitchen in Tuscany.
52 Books in 52 Weeks - 12

If there is anything I like more that Francis Mayes and Under The Tuscan is the trials and triumphs described by Peter Mayle in A Year in Provence and Toujours Provence

Like Francis Mayes, Peter Mayle transfers you, heart and soul, into his life. He and his wife purchased a 200 year old farmhouse in France at which point he begin chronicling their life month by month.  I immediately fell in love with Mayle's descriptions, his obvious love and fascination for the country he calls home, his wit, and most of all his regard for everything culinary. I devoured both of his books and can't wait to get my hands on some others. Mayle and his wife will charm you from the first page to the last.
52 Books in 52 Week - 13 and 14

The Fiction Class - Susan Breen
Arabella Hicks has an overpowering, opinionated mother, who is currently dieing in a nursing home across town. While she struggles to finish her book she's been working on for seven years, Arabella teaches a weekly writing course to a variety of trying and amusing writing enthusiasts. 
As Arabella goes through the weekly chore of her community class, she begins to see that there are more to people than strictly meets the eye. As Arabella makes friends, suffers heartache, and falls in love, her eyes are opened to the mother she thought she knew and understood.
I very much enjoyed this book and the characters I found in it. If you want to join in with Arabella's class, you will find her writing assignments at the end of each chapter.
52 Books in 52 Weeks - 15

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