Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I Read A Book, a very *good* book

(Non Dog Related)

I'm stepping out of my dog writer shoes for a moment and sliding on my fluffy book reader slippers. I must share this with you.

"This" is a novel that I just finished reading. I've been reading a lot of 'first' novels and classic novels. The book before last was To Kill A Mockingbird, which was both. I've heard everywhere and back again that writers should read good writing. I read the 'first' novels to give me hope.

I got a recommendation for a book on Barry's most excellent blog, An Explorer's View of Life. Seems the author was one of his blog friends/followers. I checked out her blog, and I loved her voice. So I followed the links and ordered her book.

My copy of Tender Graces, by Kathryn Magendie, arrived in the mail. It is published by BelleBooks, Inc., which I assume is a smallish press out of Smyrna, Georgia. I had to finish two library books which were due back. I made the mistake of reading the first chapter of Tender Graces. Library books, shmibrary books. I was hooked.

I raced through Tender Graces, not the way you would gulp down a big juicy hamburger after a couple days without food. More the way you would attend to a fresh-steamed Maine lobster, wanting to savor every bite while the butter was still hot and the shell burned your fingers a little. Everything else could wait.

That I had only recently re-read To Kill A Mockingbird is one of those inexplicable Gifts of the Universe. That book, (okay, along with Gregory Peck), holds a very dear place in my heart. Harper Lee is one of the best writers in my world. And I read Tender Graces thinking, Wow. She's that good a writer. This book is To Kill a Mockingbird good. And I was right.

Now I have to wait until the next in the series comes out. The rest of you can use the links and get your own copies. Don't bother with the blurbs - they don't do the storytelling justice. Here's a blurb: It's the story of a girl and a mountain and whispers in the wind. Of riding fast on an imaginary horse and parents who drink and make hornets buzz in a little girl's head. It's about kindness and flaws and doing better. Hot Louisiana summers and brothers who are gone and there and gone. It is simply a great read, beautifully written.



  1. Thank you....Muzzer says she will start looking for it, and put it on her list so she doesn't forget.


  2. Mom just finished South of Broad by Pat Conroy and Baking Cakes in Kilgali by Gaile Parkin (a tale of life in Rwanda after the horrors) and The Comforts of a Muddy Sunday by Alexander McCall Smith and The World According to Bertie, also by McCall Smith -- and, drum roll, she is about to start Teddy Kennedy's memoir True Compass.

    But she will look for Tender Graces to follow as you are a trusted advisor on all things special.

    Wirey woofs,

    Jake and Just Harry

  3. It sounds like a wonderful book, Patience! We'll follow the links!

    Love ya lots
    Maggie and Mitch

  4. I just watched the video and loved the fiddling! It made ME want to read it, too! I told my reading sisters and Susan will need to listen to the video fiddlin'!
    So glad you loved this book, Patience--now others can, too!

  5. Oh good! I needed a new book to read. Your review sounds wonderful. And To Kill A Mockingbird is one of my all time favorites. Not sure how many times I have read it, but it has been more than a few.

  6. Will get a copy and plan to read at Christmas. Sounds wonderful

  7. My publishers actually sent me this before I had a chance to even stop by and find it for myself! I am blushing and smiling and so very happy - this has made my morning. If you could see my sappy happy grin.....

  8. You are better than Oprah for book referrals. I enjoyed the last book you recommended, Lace Reader, and will put this one on my upcoming "to read" list. Right now I am thoroughly enjoying Willa Cather's My Antonia. Why haven't I read this wonderful book sooner?

  9. This sounds like one Old Girl would like. She reviews books at http://tiffanynorris.blogspot.com. I normally don't like to give her free publicity, but there you go.

  10. Thanks for the recommendation. I also count To Kill A Mockingbird as one of my all time favorites. She may have had only one book in her but it sure was great. I highly recommend, The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.

  11. There is nothing better than a good book. To Kill a Mockingbird was one of the very best.

  12. Happiness is an unexpected good find book that comes to you with a great recommendation. Tender Graces is #17 on my list, but may move up to top of queque. Earlier this week I was happy to learn that Sue Monk Kidd has a new book out, co-written with her daughter. It's "Traveling with Pomegranates, a mother-daughter story"--a sort of dual memoir. I'm starting Dan Brown's megabook today and then will get on to these more memorable works, I'm sure.

    BTW, I was interested to read in the post below that even well-trained whippets bite each other when on leash together when frustrated at getting to their intended target--squirrels. My four used to do that all the time. Very upsetting and hard to anticipate and deflect.

  13. I think, that because of you and Barry, I will have to read this book. To Kill a Mockingbird is one of the best books in the English language. Barry says that Tender Graces has a pink cover-I would normally NOT read such a book (isn't that dumb)--I might just take a chance.

  14. You can read an excerpt here:


    It really pulls you in.

  15. Done! It's on our reading list!
    Thank you!
    Jake and Fergi (for Moma)


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