February Books of the Month

This month’s picks are a bit different…you’ll see what I mean.

1. The Bippolo Seed and Other Lost Stories by Dr. Seuss

It’s almost Dr. Seuss’s birthday, and I just have to include this book. My first grader absolutely loves Dr. Seuss, and I was excited to give him this for Christmas last year. As a toddler, I read The Lorax about a thousand times to this child (no simple “One Fish, Two Fish” for him!), so I needed a break!

These short stories are, in a word, fabulous. We read one of them almost every night, no matter what other books they’ve picked out in addition. I find them entertaining, and, like all Dr. Seuss works, they contain wonderful life lessons to soak into their little minds.  The hooligans love to talk about the moral of the story, which is always a good thing.

2.The Last Kingdom by Bernard Cornwell

I did not read this book, but the hubs did.  It was a Free Friday pick for my Nook, and he found himself without anything to read. And he loves to read on his iPad. So he raced through the first one, then bought the second for the Nook, as well.  Then he realized that it’s a series of six books.

Our local library has them all, and I think he’s a little surprised at himself, reading the entire series this month…in actual books, not an electronic format. I convinced him that staring at a screen just before bedtime was stimulating his brain and interrupting his sleep (which I completely believe to be true), but he was so engrossed in the hard copies of the books, he ended up losing a lot of sleep, anyway!

Loss of sleep aside, he’s enjoyed the series, so if the man in your life is looking for a series about the Crusades era, this might be a great choice.

3. The Witchdoctor’s Wife by Tamar Myers

I could not put this book down, people.  The author lived with her missionary parents in Africa for much of her childhood, and this book offers a fascinating look at African society in a diamond-mining region.

While portraying how the diamond mine executives controlled and mistreated the native Africans, the author gave the impression that the “management” actually was being manipulated by those they considered inferior.

The complex, well-developed characters combined with the imagery of the landscape perfectly. I cannot wait to read her other books.

4. Eight Girls Taking Pictures by Whitney Otto

This book tells the stories of eight women photographers in the early to mid-20th century.  While I didn’t give up completely on it, and I did finish it, it was nowhere near as interesting as I expected it to be.

The book flap described it as showing the intertwining lives of these women, and how they dealt with making choices between career, love, and family.

All of those were just slightly true claims. Their lives didn’t intertwine so much as touch briefly as they end up in the same cities in Europe.  Being a photography buff, I was really looking forward to reading about pioneering female photographers.  I suppose this was worth the time I put into reading it, but I wouldn’t recommend it to friends.

So there you have it…I read a few other books this month, but was mostly in the mood for light and fluffy: A couple of books from Sara Rosett’s series, a couple of other fine-but-forgettable mysteries, and Boom by Mark Haddon with the kids.

Happy Reading (and for next month, I’m reading a couple of your suggestions from last month…so keep ‘em coming!)!!

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