December Reading Journal

I didn't read as much as I usually do in December. I think this is because I was in a movie-watching mood instead, and because a lot of my reading hours were spent on Christmas Shopping, and stuff like that. You'd think I'd have made up for it on the plane to and from France, but strangely, I didn't do ANY reading on the plane, though I did finish three novels while I was *in* France.

Quentins, Maeve Binchy. An indirect sequel to Scarlet Feather, it's almost a series of vignettes with a loose plot holding them together, and the central “character” is really a restaurant.

The Yokota Officer's Club, Sarah Bird: The story of a an American girl who comes “home” from her first year of college to spend the summer with her family, stationed on Okinawa in the sixties. Not a comedy, which so many of my choices this month were, but a great read, especially if you are or have known any military brats.

Visions of Sugar Plums, Janet Evanovich. *Registered at Bookcrossing.com* I'm told that the Stephanie Plum mysteries are hilarious. You wouldn't know it to judge by this book. I handed it off to my mother.

Hello Darling, Are You Working?, Rupert Everett. Yes This is the same Rupert Everett who is so perfect playing Oscar Wilde characters. The novel is a bit stream-of-consciousness, and a lot surreal, but very funny. Or maybe it was the cold meds. I left this at The Tall House.

Wild Designs, Katie Fforde. Another quick read by the author of Farm Fatale, and just as funny.

Long Quiet Highway, Natalie Goldberg. Autobiography of her life up to the time Writing Down the Bones was published. This book is one that lives on my shelves anyway, but I was in the mood for something other than comedy, and re-read it.

Blackberry Wine, Joanne Harris. *Registered at Bookcrossing.com* Another novel by the author of Chocolat. Not as good as Five Quarters of the Orange.

Bread Alone, Judith Ryan Hendrick. *Registered at Bookcrossing.com* I read this book last summer and it inspired me to try making sourdough again. Yum! I read it again while I was in France, because I had nothing else to read and had brought a copy for my mother. This is my official recommendation book from all that I've read in 2002.

Shopaholic Takes Manhattan, Sophie Kinsella. One of the lines in this book has to do with foreign money not counting, because it looks like play money. I read this in France and was giggling about it every time I spent any Euros. I'm sure Europeans feel the same way about US dollars.

The Tall Pine Polka, Lorna Landvik. Like her other novel, Patty-Jane's House of Curl, this book is filled with bizarre and yet completely believable characters. I could hear those round Minnesota oh's the whole time I was reading, also. Delightful.

Spin Cycle, Sue Margolis. Another in my seemingly endless supply of BritComs, this one is about an aspiring comedian who falls for the washing machine repairman. Amusing. Good bathtub reading.

Getting Over It, Anna Maxted. Yet another BritCom. Funny and sweet, and total mind-candy.

French Lessons, Peter Mayle. This book should come with a picnic basket. It's subtitled, “Journeys with knife, fork, and corkscrew,” and he isn't kidding. Delicious!

Hotel Pastis, Peter Mayle. Fiction. Yes, fiction. From the man who brought us A Year In Provence, among others. Started it in California, left it at home, and then there was a copy at The Tall House, so I finished it there.

Evening, Susan Minot. *Registered and reviewed at Bookcrossing.Com.*

CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 December Reading Journal by Melissa Bartell is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.