WWW Wednesday: October 19

This week's reading wrap up includes a classic, a children's book, some nonfiction. Just your basic Wednesday roundup of eclectic reads. :)Many thanks to Taking on a World of Words for hosting WWW Wednesday! Follow the link to read more about it, and be prepared to discover buckets of new books. Thanks also to Coffee and Cats for introducing me to WWW Wednesday!

What are you currently reading?

After finishing Pancakes in Paris, I returned to Pym by Mat Johnson. Besides being a rollicking adventure, the novel is making me think and rethink. It’s not a book I’ll be able to zoom through. I find myself pausing for long intervals to process the story and how it’s put together and its ideas. It can go from wacky hijinks, to incisive social commentary, to hilarious in a beat.

In an August book sale, I picked up When Books Went to War: The Stories That Helped Us Win World War II by Molly Guptill Manning. Nonfiction books tend to hold my attention when I’m frantically busy and have a hard time settling down to read. Ergo, this book from my Nook. The stirring introduction is worth reading even if you never commit to the whole book.

It tells the story of a WWII initiative to put books in the hands of U.S. soldiers. Manning begins with Mein Kampf and the Nazi book burnings of the 1930s to show how books were seen as weapons. She then details how the book program grew to include librarians, publishers, writers, and military personnel who believed in the power of books to sustain and inspire U.S. soldiers and remind them of what they were fighting for: the freedom to think for ourselves. So far, my favorite parts are the excerpts of letters from soldiers to authors.

What did you recently finish reading?

Last week, my friend Jessica recommended Keeper of the Lost Cities by Shannon Messenger. When Jessica recommends a book as strongly as she did this one, I listen! As usual, she was right. This novel about a 12-year old girl who discovers she’s not who she thinks she is pulled me in from the first chapter. It’s witty, suspenseful, and clever.

I also finished The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton. It’s gripping and gorgeously written, if soul crushing. Lily Bart is a New York socialite who is getting on in years (she’s a creaky 29 years old when the story begins) and still unmarried. She plays a good game but sabotages herself just when she’s about to bag her groom. Why? Because she’s conflicted about what she wants and the life she both seeks and pushes away. I don’t want to say much more because it’s a suspenseful novel to read without knowing the outcome. My eyeballs were glued to the last 100 pages as if I were reading a murder mystery.

What do you think you’ll read next?

You know me … it could be anything! A friend just lent me The Mothers by Brit Bennett. It’s at the top of my Dewey’s Readathon TBR. I also want to read the second book in the Keeper of the Lost Cities series. Jessica says she couldn’t put it down, especially after the halfway point. Perfect readathon material!

How about you? What books are on your listies this week?