sarahmichigan: (Default)
[personal profile] sarahmichigan
Book No. 19 was "Ursula, Under" by Ingrid Hill. I got this used at a thrift shop knowing very little about it except that it was largely set in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Not many books are set in the place I grew up, so I knew I wanted to grab it. It opens with the story of Ursula Wong, a toddler who falls down a mine shaft in the Upper Peninsula. A bystander wonders why so much time and expense should be "wasted" on a "half-breed" toddler. The rest of the story explores the stories of Ursula's Finnish and Chinese ancestors from thousands of years ago up through Ursula's parents and grandparents, showing how Ursula, like each of us, is a little miracle that might not have been if one of our ancestors had died early or not married or done something different with their lives. I liked some of the stories of the ancestors better than others, but it is a beautifully written book, very sad in places, but ultimately very life-affirming as well. I thought it was lovely.

Book No. 20 was "The Witch of Lime Street: Séance, Seduction, and Houdini in the Spirit World" by David Jaher. I saw this on a "best books of the year" list and knew I wanted to read it. I knew that Houdini was a skeptic, as many stage magicians are, and I knew that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was a believer in spiritualism. However, I didn't know that the two knew each other or that they were both involved to some degree with a Scientific American contest trying to find incontrovertible proof that a spiritualist was truly communicating with the dead rather than faking. Their best candidate was a spirit medium named Margery, who defied the stereotype of the shabby grifter pretending to be a medium and instead was a high society housewife who charged nothing for her seances. I don't want to give any spoilers, but this book, though nonfiction, was as engrossing and suspenseful as a novel. Highly recommended!
From:
Anonymous( )Anonymous This account has disabled anonymous posting.
OpenID( )OpenID You can comment on this post while signed in with an account from many other sites, once you have confirmed your email address. Sign in using OpenID.
User
Account name:
Password:
If you don't have an account you can create one now.
Subject:
HTML doesn't work in the subject.

Message:

 
Notice: This account is set to log the IP addresses of everyone who comments.
Links will be displayed as unclickable URLs to help prevent spam.

July 2017

S M T W T F S
      1
23456 78
9101112131415
16171819 202122
23242526272829
3031     

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Jul. 25th, 2017 08:30 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios