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Chapter 47 - My Year of Rest and Relaxation

So, no lie, the above title is that of a recently published book. A year of rest and relaxation would drive me insane as I recently found out when confronted by a short period of no outside activity. In early November I develop a painful and serious but not life-threatening illness. It required about a week of at-home activity until the meds could properly kick in.

I, naturally, took the opportunity to read, and to watch movies when my eyes got too tired to read. The former was more productive than the latter, for sure, and I found myself reading some Advanced Reader Editions and galleys (digital copies) I had received for books to be published in 2019. I also caught up on some new authors I'd never read before. Here are some of the books on my list that week -

The Suspect by Fiona Barton - This book is to be published in January. Fiona Barton has written two previous books, The Widow and The Child, which I really enjoyed. Her latest one is about two young woman who decide to go to Thailand after they finish exams. Of course, it is not all as planned and the two women go missing. Barton reintroduces Kate Waters, a reporter, and Bob Sparkes, a detective and each have their own storyline as well.

Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love by Dani Shapiro - In 2016, on a whim, Dani Shapiro sends her DNA to an online ancestry site to be analyzed. What comes back shocks her to the core - her father (or the man she had always assume was her father) was not her biological father. With her parents dead, Dani tries to track down the how and why of her discovery. Part mystery, part history, and a lot of soul searching are in this wonderful memoir. This is also available in January.

The Dutch Wife by Ellen Keith - You can see I was all over the board on my reading this week as this is a historical novel taking place during World War II. A Dutch woman and her husband are arrested and sent to labor camps. The woman is given an ultimatum - hard labor or be part of the prisoners' brothel. This story is told along with a story about 1977 Argentina during its "dirty war". The two stories merge in the end and give the reader snippets of history which may not have previously been know. This book is available now.

Killing the SS by Bill O'Reilly - No Veteran's Day weekend would be complete without a nod to history and this recent book by O'Reilly was a good one. This book follows the post-war stories of Josef Mengele, the "Angel of Death" who performed hideous medical experiments at Auschwitz; Martin Bormann, Hitler's brutal personal secretary; Klaus Barbie, the cruel "Butcher of Lyon"; and perhaps the most awful Nazi of all: Adolf Eichmann.

Felicity by Mary Oliver - Here I took a turn into something

while very easy to read that is also thought provoking. If you've never read Oliver's poems, or never read poetry perhaps, this would be a very good and approachable book to start. It is a collection of love poems that celebrates the divine as much as it does the natural world or human relationships.

Is there something you read when you are sick? Let me know!

To order these or other books go to

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