Archive for July 3rd, 2009

Cribbed from Philippa’s blog:

The rules:  Don’t take too long to think about it. Fifteen books you’ve read that will always stick with you. First fifteen you can recall in no more than 15 minutes.   This list is in no particular order.

  1. Anna Karenina, by Leo Tolstoy
  2. The Deliverance of Sister Cecilia, as told to William Brinkley
  3. Firefox, by Craig Thomas (?) — the inspiration for my own books
  4. The Black Marble, by Joseph Wambaugh — ditto
  5. The Mountain of Silence, by Kyriacos C. Markides
  6. Gifts of the Desert, ditto
  7. Father Arseny, translated by Vera Bouteneff
  8. A Cloud of Witnesses, the followup to Father Arseny
  9. The Apple Orchard Mystery, the first mystery I ever read — I was seven, and it started my love affair with mystery stories
  10. Winnie the Pooh, by A. A. Milne — I can’t believe my mother thought these books were stupid.  I loved them.
  11. The Church Mice series, by Graham Oakley — the only children’s books I’ve ever read that were just as entertaining for adults as they were for children, mostly due to the riotous puns in the illustrations (“Fleece & Guyle, Realtors,” anyone??).
  12. Night Fall, by Nelson DeMille — the whole book takes place in scenes I’ve known all my life, begins with the mystery of a jet that blew up just after taking off from Kennedy Airport, and ends with a chilling conclusion at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001.
  13. The Stork’s Nest, by Laura Lynn Williams.  As the subtitle says, Life and Love in the Russian Countryside.
  14. A Prologue to Love, by Taylor Caldwell.
  15. Well — I may as well admit it — the Unorthodox series, by yours truly.  I can’t think of any book that will always stay with me more than the one(s) I wrote myself.
Off to Jordanville tomorrow, hoping to finish the one course I never was able to get a handle on, till the year before last:  Church Slavonic.  I don’t know if I will be finishing this course this year, since I don’t know if I passed last year’s course (that instructor was going through a radical life change, from college professor to monastic, and I don’t know if he ever got his grades in for anybody).
I hate travel.  I hate the uproar of having to tie up all the loose ends of my life before leaving, I hate being away from home — especially now that there’s no one else in the house for my husband to be with — and the accommodations are, at best, monastic, which wouldn’t be a problem if you were only staying for three days, which is what they were originally designed for.  But for two weeks, I’d really like a shower that I don’t have to worry about the water turning scalding hot every time someone uses the toilet.
But once I’m there, discounting the evergreen adventure of the monastery guesthouse, it’s pure heaven.  Keep us in your prayers, as my dh will be traveling home by himself and, in two weeks’ time, returning by himself to collect me.  I don’t know why he does this to himself, but I appreciate it.

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