The Summer of Skinny Dipping, The Fellowship of the Ring, Dumbledore, Outlander, Gilead (Which One's Not A Book Title?)

Most everyone has a To Read pile. Mine comprises about 10 stacks, half by my bed, the other half scattered about the library (and listed down the left hand side in the Books To Read Before 2015 list. I'd better get cracking). I've also got a wishlist on and on, as well as in my email. My LibraryThing catalogue is a few hundred books out of date.

So sometimes, books fall through the cracks. I get really excited about a book and buy it/find it/receive it as a gift, and then for one reason or another, don't begin reading it right away.

This is what happened with Amanda Howells' The Summer of Skinny Dipping, which Medeia Sharif reviewed and then sent to me.

But a few days ago, seeking something new, I maneuvered the piles around, and picked up this book - and couldn't put it down. If you're a fan of Norma Fox Mazer or Katherine Paterson, this book is for you. It's soft and warm and bittersweet and, even though I half-guessed at the ending that was coming, I was still bawling for an hour after I'd finished it.

And then I had to turn around and keep going on edits for my own novel. Sigh.

In other book news, yesterday was the anniversary of the first publication of Tolkien's The Fellowship of the Ring, in 1954.

Also, I know I said I wouldn't mention Harry Potter, but I have to for two reasons. One, if you haven't seen Theresa Milstein's comparison of Beatlemania vs Pottermania, you're missing out on some serious laughs. Two, I've mentioned character arcs before, but somehow keep forgetting to discuss Dumbledore. He's definitely got an intricate backstory, and the way it's doled out in bits and pieces as Harry discovers his history throughout the books, makes it all the more mysterious and intriguing. Definitely a new way of revealing character.

Finally, in other book news, Diana Gabaldon's choice for Jamie Fraser (if Outlander is ever made into a movie and if she ever had a say), Allan Scott Douglas, is featured in a detailed interview at Another Look Book Reviews.

PS I almost forgot - they might be making a movie of Marilynne Robinson's Gilead. Now that is not exactly good news. I have no idea how they plan on distilling that piece of poetry into a movie and, frankly, doubt I want to see the results.

See you on Sunday with more updates from A Round of Words in 80 Days!

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