Shopping cart is empty.

Birchbark Blog

First Snow

Louise Erdrich - Wednesday, November 27, 2019
Oh, Winter.  Here you are again. It seems like you never left. The snow lies heavy on my heart and on the trampoline that I have been keeping shoveled for many a winter past. The thing is, books -- when snowed in, when the temp drops, when you feel the snow will never stop. At least there are books!

And what books. I have to write about Olga again! We know that I'm completely in favor of Olga Tokarczuk. From the advanced readers pile, I plucked Drive Your Plow Over The Bones Of The Dead, and immediately loved the eccentric voice and the murder mystery which satisfied with its eco undertone and its slippery wit.  also loved Flights but it is utterly different, more philosophical, grounded in the body. I found myself a bit choked up when I learned she won the Nobel Prize because she so deserves it. And because now there will be more translations of her books.

I loved Ann Patchett's The Dutch House. Perhaps it is my favorite of her books, which is saying a great deal. Ann wrote a character I still think about, Maeve, an ironic saint. And there is a villain she does not redeem -- very difficult to maintain a loathsome character. I so respect Ann's discipline. The house is also a character. You won't forget it. This beautifully constructed novel really is the perfect read when you are snowed in or need something classy looking to be seen with in a coffee house. I mean, the cover alone! 

All My Puny Sorrows, by Miriam Toews. Actually, anything by Miriam Toews. 

Two Books That Belong Together: Cold Warriors, by Duncan White and The Secrets We Kept by Lara Prescott. I read these books together and was pretty much overcome by all that I learned about Doctor Zhivago, the Cold War, and the real Lara. I didn't know that one of our secret cold war weapons was actually literature and that Animal Farm was translated into Polish and thousands of books were air lifted and dropped behind the Iron Curtain. The Secrets We Kept is a delicious read about what disregarded secretaries knew and told or didn't tell. After I read these books together I kept collaring people, pushing these books at them the way I'm now pushing them at you. 

What am I reading tonight? Before I make pumpkin pie with my youngest daughter? Exhalation by Ted Chiang. Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson.  

Now I have to stop. I promise a Holiday List to come and also books to look forward to when January happens.  Also, I will let you know how this pie turns out. I really can only cook two things and neither one is pie.

Yours, as always, for books.


Canoe Family

Recent PostsRSS


spring Brown Dog city of books The Round House china William Trevor Aza Jim Harrison President Obama Alice Munro Bohumil Hrabal monkey in a dryer tree books Gail Caldwell pilgrims Afghanistan Alan Weisman Native People Video School Gardens Botany incarnation italy Canada Ice Anton Treuer joy Peak Oil japan health care reform Chitra Divakaruni The Wealth of Nature sweden the most romantic city in the world Tree Houses Magers and Quinn Michael Jackson Beth Dooley Vic Glover Guthrie Theater boarding school Catalyst The Game of Silence Wastepaper The Ojibwe france Stephen Salisbury cafe 2666 post holiday solstice, Thomas King Ojibwemowin Tar Sands Hillary Clinton Dartmouth post holiday reads ependent H2Oil Louise aquifer Birchbark Books coyote The Farmer's Daughter favorite tree Green Team ireland photography north dakota Book Review germany Patrick O'Brian Collective Denial trees gardens Zombies Hilary Mantel plants Our Knowledge Is Not Primitive Emily Johnson Bill Moyers Journal Minneapolis Nero E.L. Doctorow Keystone XL book and dinner club State Troopers Too Much Happiness Dogs thank you friends bill mckibben cafe closing Too Loud A Solitude Roberto Bolano graphix Pembina Minnesota buffalo Unnatural Disasters Rare Books British Navy Empire of the Summer Moon thanks Milkweed Press birchbark house series Anishinabemowin Makoons Ojibwe Czech Writer knowledge Poetry Light in August The Birchbark House anniversary green fresh water favorite dog Master Butchers Singing Club Kate DiCamillo customers Ha Jin Women and Trees Native Arts Small Bookstores as Commons Mankato Powwow Wendy Makoons Geniusz S.C. Gwynne peculiar touches of green and gold This Green World Education Bleak House Wolf Hall Up Late Again World on the Edge Crushing Books Population The Porcupine Year support language revitalization Fireworks Islam adventure Easter Island Keeping Heart on Pine Ridge Greenland neighborhood devoted customers Chickadee Gary Clement Anishinabe Philip Roth euphoria The Royal Prussian Library Interview Kabul Aubrey/Maturin mississippi Kenwood Gardens show your love Let's Take the Long Way Home Victory Gardens gratitude how good looking you are Remarkable Trees Mohamed's Ghosts More Remarkable Trees twins favorite book local economy The Blue Sky Climate Change Nemesis leaves and snow Peak Water ptsd Love The Resilient Gardener Keepers of the Trees friends Gryphon Press The Transition Handbook National Book Award NACDI:All My Relations