Sunday, January 20, 2008

Sunday Salon - January 19

The Sunday
Currently Reading: Living A Jewish Life by Anita Diamant. 

Anita Diamant is slowly finding her way into my favorite author's list. She seems to be present at so many of the big days in my life. Her book The New Jewish Wedding was immensely helpful when we were planning our interfaith wedding; we found Maya's Hebrew Name in The New Jewish Baby Book. for her upcoming Brit Bat (naming ceremony). I am also a big fan of Anita Diamant's novel, The Red Tent, the first book of hers that I read.

Living A Jewish Life provides a practical, real-life guide to do exactly what it says - live a Jewish life. Before my hubby and I got married, we made the decision to raise our kids in Judaism, his faith. Although he calls himself more of a cultural Jew, we both agreed that we want to introduce some religious and cultural Jewish customs into our home. However, he has a very hard time explaining the rituals that were so much a part of his upbringing that it was second nature. Other customs, like Shabbat, his family never did, and he doesn't know very much about how to go about it. This book is turning out to be a great resource in helping us to create a Jewish home, and start some family traditions of our own. I'm hoping to finish the rest of the book by the end of the day.

Additions to my Bookshelves:
I have been eagerly looking forward to Daedalus' 2nd anniversary sale, which was yesterday. With the whole store 10% off, I could have easily gone overboard with impulse buys. However, I managed to restrain myself and only purchased the two books that I had planned on buying. This might be due to the fact that I also scored a pile of books off of Freecycle, but I like to think it was my own attempt at moderation.

Here are my acquistions, from both Freecycle and Daedalus:
  • Weslandia by Paul Fleischman (illustrated by Kevin Hawkes) This is one of the books from Daedalus. I first saw this mentioned at PlanetEsme, and thought about buying it for Maya when she was older. When I saw it at Daedalus, I couldn't resist. Wesley is no ordinary boy...he plans a self-sufficient civilization during his school vacation. This story about a young nonconformist is a delight, and I plan on using it in the future to teach Maya about civilizations and consumerism.
  • What is the What by Dave Eggers. The second of the two books I purchased at Daedalus, I have been meaning to read this book since it was first published in 2006. Technically a novel, the subject of the story is a real person. Valentino Achak Deng is a Sudanese refugee, and the novel is a fictional recreation of what he experienced.
My freecycle finds mainly consist of novels by the Greek writer Nikos Kazantzakis: Freedom or Death, Report to Greco, The Odyssey: A Modern Novel, Saint Francis, and A Greek Passion. Also included is the award winning children's book Old Turtle, written by Douglas Wood and illustrated by Cheng Khee-Chee, and a 1961 copy of the Garth translation of Ovid's Metamorphoses.

Book Coveting around the blogisphere:


Anonymous said...

I'm just about to read 'The Boy in the Stripped Pyjamas' for one of my reading groups. I've heard very good things about it, so I'll be interested to read what you think.

Stephanie said...

Hope you (and table talk above) enjoy The Boy in Striped Pajamas. It was definitely an interesting and very touching book.

Eva said...

Lotsa books! Just going off the titles, seems like there's a bit of a 'Greece' theme. :) They all sound really interesting-I'll look forward to your reviews!

Wendy said...

What is the What is one of those books I've been looking at (but not buying) for a long, long time!

Hope you'll enjoy So Big as much as I did - I'll look forward to your review! Thanks for the link :)

Literary Feline said...

Alisia - What a great post! It sounds like Anita Diamant's book is a worthwhile one. I read one of her fiction books awhile ago and enjoyed it. I hope to get to The Red Tent this year.

Dave Eggers' What is What is on my wish list. I have heard great things about it.

I hope you will like Breathless in Bombay if you do decide to read it!

Have a great week!