50 Books: Who is coming to our house?

One of the sweetest animal Christmas stories I've ever seen:Who Is Coming to Our House? by Joseph Slate, illustrated by Ashley WolffIt's very short and simple.  All the animals in the stable know that someone is coming to their house, and they wonder and wonder who it could be.  They do what they can to prepare for their guest, and at the end, everyone welcomes Him.A very warm, gentle, and happy book (and Mary is shown lying down and snuggling the baby after giving birth, which I a … [Read more...]

50 books: Guest Post by Steve Gershom

Okay, so I just completely forgot to post a book pick yesterday.  Today, I'm featuring two good books for Advent reading.  The first recommendation is written by the wonderful Steve Gershom (Catholic, Gay, and Feeling Fine, Thanks).****The Golden Key by George MacDonaldillustrated by Maurice SendakEverybody runs the risk of doing what Revelation 2:4 warns about: forsaking their first love. I come back to The Golden Key often, to remind me what my first love was and is.It's a … [Read more...]

50 books: speaking of heathen stuff

Today's book pick is one I just read to my kids last night, and it's just as good as I remembered it from my childhood.The Flying Carpet by the wonderful Marcia Brown (retold from Richard Burton's translation of The Arabian Nights)Very lavish and rhythmic, so much fun to read out loud (warning:  plot spoiler!)"Alas!  We have traveled far and wide for hope of wedding the Princess Nur-al Nihar.  But in vain!  She lies on her bed, sick unto death.  Her women weep and wail in sorrow.  O m … [Read more...]

50 Books: Guest post by Abba

Today's book pick is from my father, Phil Prever, who not only read us The Odyssey, but he let us act it out as he read, which must have been the most annoying thing ever.******   About a hundred years ago when I was a college freshman, I took a survey course in Western literature.  One of the reading assignments was excerpts from Homer’s Odyssey.  The book made no particular impression on me then, but I do remember a comment offered by a bright young woman during a class discussion.  “The on … [Read more...]

50 Books: Guest Post by Nana

Today's book recommendation for our 50 Books list, which I'm assuming will even out to about fifty books at some point, is written by my mother-in-law, the inestimable, unflappable, indefatigable Nana Fisher, also known as H. M. (which stands for "Helen Mary."  She also sometimes goes by "H."  Crazy side note:  I once met a midwife who was named "Mary Helen," and she went by M. H., or "Maitch"), who keeps her head when all about her are bugging out; whose cookies and fudge sustained my body and s … [Read more...]

50 Books: Something Completely Different

From Margaret Wise Brown to a book that I can't believe I didn't read sooner:Gorky Park by Martin Cruz SmithBoy, did I have the wrong idea about this book.  Maybe because it was so popular when it came out, or (look, I'm shallow) maybe because the author's name is so snazzy, I somehow assumed that it was a trashy beach book, or some kind of dated, two-bit thriller.  Boy, was I wrong.  This is the real deal -- real literature, a genuinely great novel.  Almost Dostoevskian at times.The … [Read more...]

50 Books: In Which I Gripe about Margaret Wise Brown

I honestly don't know why my kids love this book so much:The Golden Egg Book by Margaret Wise brown, illustrated by Leonard WeisgardOkay, so Margaret Wise Brown, best known for Goodnight, Moon -- kind of a difficult author, in my opinion.  They couldn't have chosen a more grating color scheme for the colorized version, and I have a really hard time with books that sometimes rhyme, but sometimes just use the same word twice, because that rhymes.  I have a hard time with the fact that they … [Read more...]


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