Two Great Times To Read: June Readings

There are two times of the year that are great

Sock Monkey reading
Sock Monkey reading by a window.

to be inside reading. One is when it’s freezing cold outside. It’s even better when there’s a blizzard outside. (Here in South Carolina that means a lone snowflake was seen only a mile down the road. ((In the summer, our crepe myrtle can cause a bit of confusion.))

The other time is when it’s hot as blazes. Now, I grew up on a local farm. Hot is when it’s over 96 degrees and you can fry your eggs on the sidewalk. The young weather folks on our local station think it’s hot when we hit 90.

I call that summer in South Carolina.

So. I’ve been enjoying my reading. My favorite book this month was Where Is God? by Dr. John Townsend. I like how he writes as if we’re sitting in the den just talking, very easy to understand and very meaningful. He writes about things I care about in my life.

And when all you see on the news is the toll the pandemic is taking and riots on our cities’ streets, this book came at a great time.

Dr. Townsend doesn’t disappoint. Although this isn’t written about a pandemic in particular, he does talk about difficulties we all go through: loss of a job, loss of a loved one, and loss of health. Did God leave the controls and go on vacation? Or has He had it with us?

Thankfully, Dr. Townsend reminds us who God is, a loving, all-powerful, all-knowing God who has chosen us to be His family.

And even in all this junk, if we look for Him, or reach our hands out to Him, He is there.

***

The Mystery of Lewis Carroll by Jenny Woolf is a biography of the author of Alice In Wonderland. I love reading biographies. Not only do you learn about the famous person, you also learn about the world they lived in.

This book left me disappointed. The author repeatedly mentioned that many of Carroll’s papers and diaries were either destroyed by his family or have turned up missing. She painted a picture of a very eccentric man with rumors about him that she just let hang out there. It’s like she wrote about someone she didn’t like and couldn’t hide.

This is one biography where I feel I know the person less after I finished reading the biography and before I read it.

Reading about Agatha Christie and Lewis Carroll reminded me that we fall in love with the writing, not the writer.

***

That mystery I read was Robert B. Parker’s Night and Day, his eighth featuring small town police chief Jesse Stone (played on TV by Tom Selleck). Parker is a legend after bringing us the Spencer series and now this, two very different and interesting protagonists.

Stone is a disgruntled former big city cop who had been exiled to a small town. By this time, Parker must have assumed his reader knew him and the location because there was very little description. It was hard to get into his world. And the amount of alcohol he consumed was ridiculous.

The starkness of the writer made it hard to enter the scenes and remember what was happening. There were several different women who all seemed to be the same to Stone. And I always find it hard to believe that suicide-by-cop can have so little effect on the officers and can be shrugged off with another scotch.

I found it more disappointing than bad.

***

The good thing about finishing a book is that you can answer the call of the

next book and open the pages to crawl into a whole nuther world.

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