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Monday, April 6, 2020

Reader Questions: Pandemic/Quarantine Reading List


Reader Questions:

Hi Muffy,  Given all my newly found free time I have been reading more than usual.  I wanted to recommend one book and ask readers for recommendations for other books.  I just finished Lady in Waiting: My Extraordinary Life in the Shadow of the Crown by Anne Glenconnor, Lady in Waiting to Princess Margaret and lived at Holkham, which I would highly recommend.
and...
Muffy, should we do a "recommended reading" post?  

28 comments:

  1. Currently reading Shackleton’s “The Heart of the Antarctic and South”, I highly recommend it. Waiting for the pandemic to end and the sailing season to start here in Finland, whichever comes first.

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  2. Highly recommend Eric Jay Dolin. His books Leviathan about the American whaling industry and Brilliant Beacons about the history of American lighthouses, are both fantastic. His other books are good as well but if you're starting out those are the ones I'd recommend.

    In a similar strain Nathaniel Philbrick, Second Wind and Away Off Shore are both really good.

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    1. Thanks for the vote of confidence! In case it is not clear, I am Eric Jay Dolin. It is so great to hear that people enjoy your books. Also wanted to let you know that I have a new book coming out in August -- A Furious Sky: The Five-Hundred-Year History of America's Hurricanes. Thanks again for reading my books, and sharing your recommendations. All the best, Eric www.ericjaydolin.com

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  3. Brilliant Beacons by far. Stay safe everyone.

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  4. The Overstory by Richard Powers. About trees, who knew?

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    1. Good recommendation! My husband is an arborist and I am going to recommend this book to him.

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  5. The Theory of Moral Sentiments Adam Smith "Life changing"
    The Second Life of Tiger Woods A lack of apathy isn't permanent
    1774 Mary Beth Norton Good but a bit longish It does use the word "synecdoche" well in describing the Tea Party as illustrative of a general resentment of England.
    Apropos of Nothing by Woody Allen Very entertaining. Woody demonstrates that being a liberal doesn't insulate one from the wokeness of the New York Times

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  6. Re-reading S.M. Stirling's Nantucket series. Very fun. Semi post-Apocalyptic series wherein Nantucket remains in the 20th century, but the rest of the world is cast into the 12th century B.C. Lucky for them, they have a plethora of sailboats and a naval tall ship in port when the event occurs. Lots of Master and Commander references. Reminiscent of A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. Loads of history and sailing. Much fun.

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  7. "The Starboard Sea," a brilliant first novel by Amber Dermot, is set at a coastal New England prep school, where the protagonist is a member of the sailing team. At once heartbreaking and ridiculously funny (when the boys go to Cambridge for Head of the Charles weekend), I re-read this book at least once a year.

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  8. Ship Ashore by Jeanette Rattray. Old book but well worth the read.

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  9. Thucydides' History of the Peloponnesian War is always good when you have plenty of time on your hands, especially if you want to read about a deadly epidemic in a society riven by excessive partisanship.

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    1. In 2006 Gore Vidal was asked to name a book that changed his life. He responded The History of the Peloponnesian War. He explained that he first read it when he was about 17 or 18 before he went into the Army. He continued to reread it, never stopping, throughout his life. If I recall accurately, I believe he was especially moved by the funeral oration for the dead soldiers of Athens.

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  10. The Other People. Thriller by CJ Tudor. A real page turner.

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  11. “The Lobster Chronicles “ by Linda Greenlaw. Very entertaining.
    MaryAnne

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  12. I'm currently re-reading all of my Iris Murdoch.

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  13. "Lawrence in Arabia," by Scott Anderson (2013).

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  14. Lady of Empire

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  15. On the Beach - Nevil Shute.

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  16. I've read this: https://www.amazon.com/Thoughts-Philosophical-Fighter-Pilot-Reprint/dp/0817993924

    a couple dozen times over the years. I get something new from it every time I go through it. Read it in times of trouble and you'll never feel like a victim or feel sorry for yourself again. Staying at home for a month is tough? You'll be embarrassed.

    One of the great books ever written.

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  17. I am currently re-reading The Complete Short Stories of Hercule Poirot by Agatha Christie. It has been a while since I have had the time to relax and enjoy these delightful stories. I can't think of a better way to pass the time then reading Agatha Christie.

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  18. A respected friend suggested Keep Going: 10 Ways to Stay Creative in Good Times and Bad by Austin Kleon. She said it is a book we could all use right now. So, I looked it up. It was published one year ago. The reviews were enthusiastic, so I have ordered it.

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  19. "The Plague," by Albert Camus.

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  20. I'm a second on The Starboard Sea; would recommend as a prep school novel The Expectations by Alexander Tilney

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  21. I always enjoy revisiting the Fairacre series by Miss Read - a quiet, often quite witty tale of an schoolteacher's life in a small English village. Also re-reading Barbara Pym, Nancy Mitford, P.G. Wodehouse, and Jane Austen.

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  22. I have discovered a brilliant novelist named Richard Major whose sleuth, Felix Culpepper, is hilarious and diabolical. The books are all set in a fictional Cambridge college. Quintember is especially fine, as are Piracies and This Lower World.

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  23. Sadly, Final Gifts by Callanan and Kelley (hospice nurses) may prove timely and helpful for some as "quarantine reading."

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