Recently Read, Recently Seen

When I last wrote, I'd begun reading Green Dolphin Street  by Elizabeth Goudge.  I did not finish that book.  I never got much past the first chapter...I tried picking it up again several times but I've found that sometimes forcing a book is just wrong.  Often it's just not the time for it.  And so I set that book aside and picked up this one

The Dirty Life by Kristin Kimball.  This was one I got through my book club several months ago and never finished the first chapter either.  However, this time, I got caught up in the book and could barely put it down.  It wasn't quite what I expected.  I thought I would read about how the author threw off her old life and wholly embraced a new one with glee.  Instead, what I read was an honest account of a woman who radically changed her life, and the struggle and triumphs she went through.

And what does she do that so transforms her life?  Only falls in love with a farmer, gives up the city life and takes up organic farming in a big way...

Highly recommend this one whether you farm or garden or love the country life or only dream of doing any of those things.

Ladybird by Grace Livingston Hill...I started this story a few weeks ago then set it aside.  Seeing a theme going on here?lol  Well time to finish it.  I sometimes get a little frustrated reading Mrs. Hill's books.  The helplessness of her heroines sometimes sets me on edge.  I realize that is partly due to the time in which she wrote. It is also due to my own immersion in our current culture in which women are brazenly bold. At any rate, the helplessness of the heroine is part of the magic of Mrs. Hill's work.   It also builds a lot of tension in the reader and I think that's what really gets to me more than the helplessness.  In which case, Mrs. Hill has done a fine job in bringing the reader into the book!

This story revolves around a young girl who is alone, whose faith is tested and then challenged and how she grows in resolve and strength.

Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier  

A classic, truly it is.  I've read a few of Du Maurier's books, The Glass Blowers, My Cousin Rachel, Jamaica Inn and have found her books widely different.  The first book of this list was historical and stodgy reading to be sure.  I think here the author definitely had found her voice and the novel bristles with intrigue from the beginning.

I found myself totally engrossed in this book.  It's a thriller of sorts, but not like what we're used to in  modern day reading.  However, I must say Du Maurier admirably holds the tension taut, allows the reader to get inside the main character's head via a very clever trick.  The book is written in the first person "I" and we know her only by her married last name, which allows the reader to fully take her place.  I think it's the most clever trick and it works so very very well.

A most definite 'must read' book.  I'm renting the movie, it's going on my Netflix queue this week.


Lady Jane with Helena Bonham Carter as Lady Jane Gray, the nine days Queen of England.  I wanted to see this Dvd, was interested in the content, but no kidding it was a hard watch.  Namely because microphones were trained more upon squeaky doorways than actors.  As well, for the 'authentic' touch, lighting was kept to about what it might have been at the time.  HUGE mistake in my opinion as I felt all too often I was staring at a black silent screen.  I'll pass on watching this one again.

Guns for San Sebastian with Anthony Quinn in the lead.  An atheist outlaw falls in with a nutty priest who is being sent to man the church of San Sebastion.  Something about the old priest's faith and desire to save the people of the village intrigues Quinn's character.  When the priest is shot and killed, Quinn poses as a priest and helps the village to begin to live once more, determined to fight odds.  In the process, he finds God...It was really a very good film and I'll happily watch it again and again.


Susan in SC said...

Rebecca is one of my all time favorite books!

Iris said...

I read "The Dirty Life" earlier this year and wasn't sure I would like it but I did. I liked her honesty.

Tracey McBride ~ Frugal Luxuries® said...

Great reviews Terri! I agree regarding DeMaurier's work, "Rebecca" is her masterpiece! As for the's a Hitchcock classic and among my very favorites. We have it on VHS and Rosie and I continue to watch it a few times each year (especially when cookie making during the holidays...don't know why because it's not a holiday movie, obviously...along with "The Bishop's Wife" with Cary Grant).
You have me intrigued about the "Guns for San Sebastian". It looks like a movie Mike would like as well...and a great story about how when we "act as if" we can change...for the worse or for the better! :)

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