Let us put by some hour of every day for holy things...

Think on th' eternal home,
The Saviour left for you;
Think on the Lord most holy, come
To dwell with hearts untrue:
So shall ye tread untired His pastoral ways,
And in the darkness sing your carol of high praise.

--from Keble's The Christian Year, Thoughts in Verse



Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Time for Books!


The Potboiler.  Art Print.
Isn't this marvelous? https://www.etsy.com/listing/197731763/the-potboiler-art-print
Somehow my summers always seem like the time to launch into a major reading binge. It's probably a holdover from my homeschooling years when, after prodding the kids through their reading from September through May, I finally had a burst of glorious free time to indulge myself. 

Past summers have seen me diving headlong into Mazo de la Roche, A. J. Cronin, Jane Austen, the Brontes, Thomas Hardy, and Anthony Trollope, for example. I'm not talking a mere book or two, I mean reading their works whole hog--or as many as I can cram in or until I get tired of them. Anthony Trollope, for example, wrote so many books it would take years to read them all. How on earth he did that, in long hand, while also holding down a full time job as postmaster, I can only wonder. I've read masses of them, but there are far more I haven't read than those I have. Thomas Hardy's works I was really grooving on until I hit up with Jude the Obscure. When I realized where it was going, I decided I couldn't take one more depressing tale of a nice guy being ruined by a coarse, selfish, beguiling shrew, so Jude was tossed aside.

This year, though, I'm on a different tack altogether: it's non-fiction. One evening a month or so back, I was casting about for something to read, and pulled an aging paperback off my shelf, The Day Lincoln was Shot by Jim Bishop. I'm not sure where I got the book nor how long I'd had it--it was probably something I'd nabbed as a potential homeschooling resource back in the day--but it was sitting there as one of those "I should read that someday" volumes--you know, the ones you tell yourself you'll get to but somehow assiduously avoid. To my surprise, one or two pages into it and I could hardly put it down!
The two books that got me started...

When I finished it, I was hungry for more about the Civil War era and its background. So I ferreted around my stash of put-aside books and found another yellowing paperback, This Hallowed Ground by Bruce Catton. Touted on the cover as "A classic work--certainly the best single-volume treatment of the Civil War... a book to own and to remember..." all I can say is, I finished it over the weekend (even apart from the notes at the back, it ran to 495 pages) and I can't wait to read more! 

It turns out this Bruce Catton wrote a stack of books about the Civil War and, thanks to eBay and Alibris, I've managed to track most of them down. So, without further ado, I present my summer reading project:


You never knew, did you, that Trixie Belden's The Mysterious Code was a Civil War history book, did you?  Neither did I--but Atlanta Books sent this to me instead of  Iron Thunder: The Battle Between the Monitor and the Merrimac which was the title I ordered. I'm still trying to get that straightened out!

Currier and Ives Print - Engagement Between Monitor and Merrimac, Storming of Fort Donelson Tennessee - 1968 Vintage Book Page - 12 x 9

Maybe Trixie had a secret career deciphering coded telegraph messages on board on ironclad?https://www.etsy.com/listing/212741315/currier-and-ives-print-engagement



I'm still trying to figure out how the post office managed to contort this hardback book into a scoliosis model. 

Here are a few more Bruce Catton titles I may have to obtain; you can get them on Etsy (along with many of the others in the photo above) by clicking on the links:

https://www.etsy.com/listing/212176966/1974-gettysburg-the-final-fury-bruce

https://www.etsy.com/listing/242118816/banners-at-shenandoah-by-bruce-catton

https://www.etsy.com/listing/263841334/us-civil-war-history-by-bruce-catton

No comments :

Post a Comment