Monday, March 9, 2015

Two Books and a Boy

My little friend Joey stopped by on Saturday.  He had a great time trying out all the kid-size chairs, spinning anything that would spin, rearranging the rubber ducks, and, most importantly, getting acquainted with books. Joey's mom, Em, sent this picture shortly after they got home.
Because you're a reader, you already know the many benefits of being swept away by that special book.  Here's a bit of an article from  

A study recently published in the journal Research in Social Stratification and Mobility found that just having books around the house (the more, the better) is correlated with how many years of schooling a child will complete. The study (authored by M.D.R. Evans, Jonathan Kelley, Joanna Sikorac and Donald J. Treimand) looked at samples from 27 nations, and according to its abstract, found that growing up in a household with 500 or more books is “as great an advantage as having university-educated rather than unschooled parents, and twice the advantage of having a professional rather than an unskilled father.” Children with as few as 25 books in the family household completed on average two more years of schooling than children raised in homes without any books.

 Not every book suits every reader, and this book discussion selection did not suit me at all.  While I know that others in our group liked it, I found  it lacking substance, repetitive, predictable and unrefined.  That's all

Today I started The People of the Book, a novel a customer has been challenging me to read for at least two years.  I regret having waited so long.  It reminds me a little of Susan Vreeland's The Girl in Hyacinth Blue, the story of a painting's history.  In this novel, Pulitzer Prize winner Geraldine Brooks follows the life of a mysterious illuminated Hebrew manuscript that was rescued during the shelling of Sarajevo's library.  A rare book expert is hired to gently bring the volume back to life, and in doing so she discovers the journey the book has taken from 15th century Spain to the present.  Packed with history, ritual, museum techniques, and politics.  Now that's substance.

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