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Reading a good book in the month of January...

Hello and welcome to the last Wednesday in January!!! Already? How is your year going thus far? Is it hard to believe you are nearly one month down in 2023? Perhaps it is because the weather (in Michigan anyway) feels more like what one would expect in the spring (scratch that today! It snowed :(. It really hasn't been that bad!!! (sans this morning!)

I was thinking of friends and conversations recently and the thought occurred to me that the winter season is such a great time to read a good book. Do you enjoy reading? If so, what genre do you prefer? Fiction or non-fiction? Historical or romance? Sci-fi or poetry? Mystery or Fantasy Fiction? How about a biography or autobiography? What about magazines; especially shelter magazines that offer great ideas for a winter "update" project?

At the moment I am reading Agatha Christie: An Elusive Woman by Lucy Worsley. Ms Christie, of course, is known for her detective novels, 66 in all. Her famous mystery play, Mousetrap, from 1952, is still running today. It is worth making it a point to see, if you find yourself in London. We have seen it twice and it delighted each time. Her book/movie "Murder on the Orient Express" is another favorite. I saw the movie when I was in high school and, back then, had a hard time following the plot!!!! In fact, I fell asleep!... However, I gave it another try (years later) and, being much more appreciative of murder mystery plots and Detective Poirot, love this book (movie). This biography is interesting as it speaks to Agatha's opinion of herself as well as that she was a very modern woman of her time. It is a book that can be read in small time slots, which makes for easy reading when you can't just binge!

Another book that you might appreciate is "Bonhoeffer". Opposite of a fiction murder mystery, this book is non-fiction and is, in fact, about the life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. He was a German Lutheran pastor and theologian. Even more intriguing was that he was an anti-Nazi dissident who was key in an assignation plot against Hitler. Obviously, the plot was foiled and Bonhoeffer was eventually arrested. I don't want to give any more away on this story. But, if you like true life stories, especially during the war, this is an absolute must read!

A much lighter read, and one that has already been passed around is: "Where the Crawdads sing"!!! This came out a couple of years ago and was recommended for a "summer by the pool" read. It is surprisingly detailed; the writer's descriptions create images in your mind that you feel as though you are in the scene. It's sooo good. Have you ever read a book and didn't want it to end? This is one like that.

Back to a more serious type of read; Becoming Bullet Proof by Eve Poumpouras is really interesting, as it starts out on 9/11, and I won't give any more than that. She shares an amazing front row seat to her experiences that day. I would just add that one of the biggest takeaways was how she explains "situational awareness". Not just because of 9/11, but simply because of the world we live in, it is a very mindful thing to be aware of your situation, wherever you are. I "look" differently, in that, I do a little assessment of my surroundings, especially when I am in places like: airports, restaurants, public spaces etc. It's not to say I live in fear, because it's not in my DNA to live on the defensive. However, I understand it's helpful to be aware of your situation and be in tune to that sixth sense. If something feels off, it just may be!

Lastly, on the spiritual side of things, a book I have found to be of interest is: Angels by the late Billy Graham. This one has been on my bedside table since before Christmas and all I can attest to is that I want to read this one. It starts out that many believe in angels and that they are, in fact, here with us on earth. You have to be somewhat of a believer in spiritual beings to have an interest in this one. I do believe in spiritual beings, so I am already in a mindset to hear what he has to say on the subject. Maybe I will circle back once I have finished the book. Please don't hold your breath as I am deep in the middle of an online course so it might just be "summer by the pool" before I can comment further.

Thank you for reading today. I hope your January was fabulous!!!

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