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Doerr’s About Grace and Other Good Reading

penguin_thumbFinding this book a few days ago was a great stroke of luck. It was on a library sale table and it sounded like a perfect book in which to lose myself. It was. The main character, David Winkler, has vivid dreams that sometimes come true. This becomes problematic when he dreams that his infant daughter, Grace, drowns in a flood. When the water begins to rise, David first tries to convince his wife, Sandy, to move Grace to safety. When Sandy insists on staying, he decides he must leave — hoping to disrupt the dream’s predictive power by refusing to play a his role. He flees, ending up on an island in the Caribbean.

Part of what propels the novel forward is David’s immediate and all-consuming desire to know how Grace (and Sandy) fared after he left town. He calls. He writes. Eventually, he earns his way back home and tries to find out what happened. David is an interesting character and he finds good people to help him along in his quest. I think this would be a terrific book for a book club.

af cover15_Exam week always brings requests from the boys for big books. They want plenty of material for the time between when they finish their tests and when the very last person in the very last room in the school finishes his test. D (6th grade) is in the middle of the Artemis Fowl series. I have read a chapter here or there, but he’s become quite speedy with his reading so I can’t make much sense of the plot. I gave Jon Spiro, an American in book three, a southern accent. It made a nice contrast with Artemis’ arrogant Irish accent.

edgar sawtelle15_G (9th grade)  re-read Accelerando by Charles Stross. (He bought a paperback copy even though he owns an e-copy for his Kindle because he doesn’t take his Kindle to school.) His wonderful English teacher has been feeding him books: The Story of Edgar Sawtelle (David Wroblewski, 2008), Swords in the North (Paul Anderson, 1939), and Things Fall Apart (Chinua Acebe, 1958). Today he borrowed back from his brother The Way of Shadows (Brent Weeks, 2008).

crackerMonday, N (7th grade) read Cracker (Cynthia Kadohata, 2007), but today he mistakenly left a 3-inch tome about World of Warcraft on the kitchen counter. His classmate lent him a copy of Eragon (he tells me he was desparate — though it used to be one of his favorites). Richard has a stack of spy books beside his bed, but he’s been pulling extra duty on the computer to try to keep up with the video needs of the blog.

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