Holiday Reads for the Rest of Us

To get into the holiday spirit this year I’ve been cranking up the Christmas tunes, decorating the Christmas tree, and drinking hot cocoa while watching Home Alone, but when it comes to books I need something a little less sparkly and bright. I like to read realistic fiction – nothing against a good cozy mystery or a holiday themed romance, but I enjoy the struggle of real life in my reading. It helps me recognize what I’m thankful for and helps me feel less alone if I’m having a hard time. Here are some fiction reads, for however you spend the season, to bring some empathy, understanding, and maybe a little chaos.

Disgruntled: A Novel by Asali Solomon: “Kenya is teased mercilessly by her Philadelphia grade-school classmates for her Kwanzaa-celebrating family’s odd ways—and they don’t know the half of it.  Her father preaches “black anarchy” as the volatile leader of the Seven Days, a group he and Kenya’s mother, Sheila, who grew up in the projects and who supports her family as a librarian, has pulled together. Preternaturally observant and mordantly funny, Kenya is a hypnotic narrator coping valiantly with an increasingly bewildering life.” (Booklist) Continue reading “Holiday Reads for the Rest of Us”

A Vitamin D Deficiency Rx: A Little “Light” Reading

As we approach the winter solstice with its abbreviated daylight, many of us in the Pacific Northwest find ourselves in need of a little light therapy. To infuse some much-needed luster into our lives, we’ve compiled an eclectic-and electric-selection of books, music, and videos. Cozy up in a chair and read by the radiant warmth of a fire, in the silvery rays of the sun, or by the incandescent glow of a full-spectrum bulb, and ponder the phenomenon of phosphorescence. And take heart, dear reader, as there is no better season for bibliophiles than winter.

Celebrations of Light: A Year of Holidays Around the World by Nancy Luenn; illustrated by Mark Bender

Author Nancy Luenn enlightens young readers on the role of light in many world cultures’ celebrations, including Candlemas, Bon Matsuri, Diwali, Hanukkah, Luciadagen, and Kwanza.

Eating the Sun : How Plants Power the Planet by Oliver Morton

In this energizing and informative book, Oliver Morton Continue reading “A Vitamin D Deficiency Rx: A Little “Light” Reading”