…and it can’t get here quickly enough.
It’s an occupational hazard, though not especially hazardous, that when the mercury begins to rise, people begin to ask, “Are you ready?”
Well, yes. I’m ALWAYS ready. But this year I didn’t really start thinking about summer vacation until a few days ago. I’m a little behind schedule with the literature and so caught a bit unawares in terms of my planning for final exam preparation. Really, though, I will confess the hopelessly uncool truth that I am reluctant to let these kids go. I hit the class roster lottery this year, and and I’m not quite ready to send them on their way. Make no mistake, they are well prepared for what lies ahead, but I’m reluctant say good bye. They don’t know it yet, and might not believe me even if I articulated it, but once they walk out my door at the end of their first year of high school, I won’t see them much. They will be, rightfully, far too occupied getting on with the business of growing up. Another occupational hazard, I reckon.
What I am starting to feel those anticipatory jolts about, though, is the Chucking of the Schedule. My big goal for the summer is to spend as much time as possible sitting by the pool watching my kids swim and reading books.
Without further sap, self-indulgent reflection, or ado, the first and sure-to-be-embiggened, summer reading list:
The Cookbook Collector by Allegra Goodman, which I think was on my list last year and I still haven’t read.
The Medusa Amulet by Roberta Masello, a thriller whose title keeps appearing in front of my face, so I figure it’s meant to be, never mind the fact that it begins in the Newberry Library, which was formerly directed by my godfather.
The Tiger’s Wife by Tea Ohrent, a smash hit at my dad’s book club of 60-something men, which might not sound like the recommendation of a lifetime, but they’re not exactly dummies. Plus every review I’ve read repeats the same critical point: girlfriend can write.
*Elegies for the Brokenhearted by Christie Hodgen. The title says, “Meh,” but the review says, “Bring it.”
Good Stuff by Jennifer Grant, Grant’s memories of life with her devoted father, actor Cary Grant. Whom I adore. So I don’t really care if it’s even very good, I’m reading it.
An Irreverent Curiosity by David Farley. I’m not doing much traveling this summer. If I can’t do this, I might as well read about people who can, and did, and then some.
A Moveable Feast: Life Changing Food Encounters from Around the World by Don George. More travel + food. Nothing wrong with that. Plus it takes its title from the best example of descriptive writing I’ve yet to read. (Note, I got those last two titles from some ridiculous Huffington Post amalgamation slide show cluster…you get the idea).
*Our Kind of Traitor by John LeCarre. Spies. Sold.
I’ll Never Get Out of This World Alive by Steve Earle. The man can do just about anything he sets his mind to, there’s no reason to think he can’t write the hell out of a novel, so I’ll give it a try.
The Privileges by Jonathan Dee. I keep finding scraps of paper with this title written on it, and there must be a reason for that.
But this is only going to get me through a few weeks, so what else should I be reading? You tell me!
*recomendations from Most Esteemed Colleague