Ahhh.... school's out for summer. I love this time of year- the change of pace, the not-rushing, relative calm of the morning routine, the sensory extremes of unbearable heat and humidity and the delicious cool of air conditioning and evening breezes, the adventure of travel and camps and spontaneous outings that only happen in expansive time. This will also be the first summer in many years I'll be working (part-time) and not exclusively home with children. It's bittersweet, in a way, but also exciting to change things up a little, and to feel that essential bit closer to a professional existence beyond motherhood.
One of the very first things we do each year to kick-off summer is head to the library. I went with a few specific titles in mind - Colum McCann's TransAtlantic, Rachel Kushner's The Flamethrowers, A.M. Homes' May We Be Forgiven - and of course none of them were on the shelf (I didn't really expect them to be without a request, but a girl can always hope). I was thrilled to stumble upon a few books that have been on my to-read list for a while: Lydia Millet's Magnificence; Jami Attenberg's The Middlesteins; Lydia Netzer's Shine Shine Shine. And as a bonus, I found a short story collection by A.M. Homes. Thus my summer reading begins with a few hold requests and a delightful dive into Magnificence (W.W. Norton, 2013) - here's a little taste of Millet's whimsical and poignant opening:
"It was a stricken love, but still love. It was the kind of love that gazed up at you from the bare white flood of your headlights- a wide-eyed love with the meekness of grass-eaters. Soft fur, pink tongue, and if you got to close a whiff of mulch on the breath. This was the love she cherished for her husband.
The love had other moments. Of course it did. But its everyday form was vegetarian."
Gorgeous writing and vegetarian love - who could resist?
Happy reading! What's on your reading list this summer?