Three Good Books
September 14, 2010
These books are worth talking about and reading. You’ll find cowboys, camels, and some great writing in these pages. Here’s the list of good books I’ve read lately in reverse order.
I’m reading The Scent of Rain and Lightning, by Nancy Pickard, right now. This book has cowboys in it: rugged Kansas cowboys. The only thing that would make it better is if they were Missouri cowboys. I love Pickard’s Midwest descriptions of ranch life, and there’s a good suspense story here. Ranch hand gone bad, good son killed, bad guy gets released from prison, and returns to small town where his daughter lives. Kansas City native, Pickard, spins a good tale, just like she did in The Virgin of Small Plains.
The Postmistress, by Sarah Blake, delivers great words. This book may be my favorite because of how it made me feel. It’s really about radio gal, Frankie Bard, in the fledgling days of broadcast journalism during the opening of WWII. As a female war correspondent in London, Frankie must survive the nightly air strikes while trying to get the story out. Now I know why they called the bomb shelters “funk holes.” There are some really poignant scenes when Frankie is sent on the trains into Europe to record the voices of all the displaced people being forced out of their homes. The story parallels a doctor from Cape Cod who volunteers for service and leaves his pregnant wife at home. Read this!
Camels and jet skis equal a good mystery. Finding Nouf, (rhymes with loaf) by Zoe Ferraris transported me to a desert world not usually frequented by outsiders. A rich Saudi girl has been discovered dead, but finding the killer takes the work of a female worker in an all-male coroner’s office and an uptight desert guide. I loved all the twists and turns, the tea served, the zoo and the marketplace, and the chill of imagining a rogue flood sweeping through the desert. Throw a scarf over the lamp and listen to your favorite Buddha Bar music because this book really sets a mood.