Thursday, June 5, 2014

Books I'm Carrying Around: The Rosie Project & Baking Cakes in Kigali

I'm working on my summer reading lists!  The busy-ness of the school year will slow down just a little bit, my school-related activities will come off the calendar and I anticipate more than a couple lazy days by the pool or laying in the grass with a good book and a glass of sweet tea. This by the way, is pretty much how I picture retirement when I get to the point.

Here's a few books I've kicked off my summer reading with - from my "read" and "reading" piles.

The Rosie Project (Don Tillman #1)The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was looking for a light, fun, chick-lit-maybe type of book for the weekend- and this was it!  Don Tillman is a genetic scientist in search of love and a wife, and develops a multi-page questionnaire to find the perfect woman. He also has to go through a few face-to-face dates to verify the data, which he's not so crazy about. He comes upon Rosie in his search, but she has a project of her own - a genetic puzzle that Tillman grabs enthusiastically.  And off they go.

Mix in that Tillman is on the Aspergers spectrum somewhere (I don't know that I would've figured that out on my own, not being that familiar with Aspergers, but there's some hints in the book) and Rosie is the social butterfly.  They're both kinda funny, with some serious moments, and make for a fun read.

And - if you're on Twitter - so is @ProfDonTillman!

Baking Cakes in KigaliBaking Cakes in Kigali by Gaile Parkin

After my recent run of books relating to slavery and a discussion with a friend about how "all" books by African writers deal with some aspect of civil unrest, colonization, or slavery from the other side of the ocean, I needed an African book that didn't deal with racial and cultural strife.  (Though, I have to say that the exception has been Ghana Must Go - not exactly a light read, but it at least was not about war.)  I admittedly picked up Baking Cakes in Kigali based on the title - I mean, "baking cakes" - it's got to be somewhat light, right?  Will it matter that the author, Gaile Parkin, is a white woman born and raised in Zambia?  Does race matter in the subject of the book, whether it can be serious or light?  Don't know yet. I'll tell you when I finish the book.

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