This is my symphony

What I read & what I lived …

(noun): a high degree of gratification or pleasure; extreme satisfaction Merriam Webster This year I’ve got my eye on delight. It seems like a perfect fit for where I am now. Happiness carries a little too much emotional weight for me, and joy is ever-present. It’s the extra-in-the-ordinary that gives me pleasure. So delight it …

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I’m happy and relieved to have weathered my first holiday season alone. Or, truly alone, I should say. Last year we were busy caring for Mom and making her last Christmas as lovely as possible under the circumstances. I was surrounded by extended family and hospice workers, and I was busy as heck. In the …

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I can’t say I know much about midwifery, female escorts, or homeopathic practitioners, but author Chris Bohjalian’s novels–Midwives, The Guest Room, and The Law of Similars, for instance–let me step into shoes I’ve never worn. Last month I read his Hour of the Witch, a story centered on life in one of the first settlements …

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What I read This month’s book club read is Jessica Francis Kane’s Rules For Visiting. And just as the back cover blurb states, the novel is “a nourishing book, with its beautiful contemplation of travel, trees, family, and friendship”–“a perfect antidote to our chaotic times.” I couldn’t agree more. And come Monday when five women …

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What I read In June 2020 when the world was still shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a group gathered on the piazza in front of the Cathedral of St. Andrew to hold a vigil for racial justice. George Floyd had just been killed. Peaceful protests during the day turned violent at night. Tensions …

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What I read Writer Ann Patchett’s husband said of her idea for Run, “Dump that opera book [Bel Canto] you’re working on, and go to that really, really great idea you had for a book.” I couldn’t agree more. Because while I’m an Ann Patchett fan, Bel Canto, despite the award winner it is, was …

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What I read The Henna Artist by Alka Joshi is set in India. The year, 1955. Thirteen years before, Lakshmi Shastri escaped her abusive husband Hari, and over the years makes a new life for herself as a henna artist–and an herbalist who helps wealthy women prevent (and abort) pregnancies. The life she establishes in …

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Ring the bells that still can ring Forget your perfect offering There’s a crack in everything That’s how the light gets in. Leonard Cohen What I read I’ve made mention before of my love for all things Three Pines and Inspector Gamache, but Louise Penny’s ninth Gamache novel How the Light Gets In has got …

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What I read Every so often a book comes along that meets you right where you are, one that stares straight into your heart as you sit nose-to-page. This week, that book was All the Children Are Home by Patry Francis. Dahlia and Louie Moscatelli have a houseful of foster children. Their rag tag family …

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What I read If I ever need a quick pick-me-up, I’ll choose a novel that exalts all things food. And since I read–and loved–Ruth Reichl’s Tender at the Bone, when I saw her debut-novel Delicious! on the shelf, I thought it deserved a chance. I wasn’t disappointed: a food magazine, New York City, an ugly …

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