October Book Log + One, Teensie, Tiny Cheat

Confession time: I only read one whole book in October. Yes. I admit it.

(“Some literate lifestyle model she is,” one might mutter.)

However, I must plead extenuating circumstances. The book I am reading during Reboot at school is one I started in September. It is larger than standard size and over 300 pages in length. Today I finally began the last section.

I also started three other books in October, and one of them I finished reading November 1. That’s my cheat. I don’t want to wait a whole month to talk about it.

The Only Book I Finished in October

248377The only book I finished in October is actually the second book in a series, The Farsala Trilogy, by Hilari Bell. The first book, Fall of a Kingdom, I picked up in the school library back in 2014. It took me a year to find book three of the trilogy, and finally last summer, I found book two: Rise of a Hero. In this novel Bell follows the lives of the three protagonists from book one–the daughter of the general of the Farsalan army, the illegitimate son of this same general, and the itinerate peddlar (and traitor who betrayed the Farsalan army to the conquering Hrum.) The kingdom has just one more chance to throw off the yoke of their enemy, and each of the three works in his or her own way to thwart their conqueror.

It was so easy to slip back into the world of Farsala, even though two years had passed since my first read. Each of the main characters, while distinctly flawed is also quite sympathetic. Your heart aches with theirs over all that has passed, and yearns with them for their world to be set right. I highly recommend both books one and two of this series and can hardly wait to read book three, Forging the Sword. (And I won’t be waiting another two years!)

My Teensie, Tiny Cheat

18580As I said earlier, I did start three other books in October, and I finished one on November first–Summer of My German Soldier, by Bette Greene.

I had many preconceived notions about this book and, wow, was I wrong. I knew before I read it that it was about a girl who shelters an escaped German prisoner during World War II, and for some reason I thought it was a romance (hence the amount of time it took for me to get around to reading it.) However, this is not a sappy love story about a young woman sheltering a handsome enemy. Instead, it is the gripping story of a Jewish girl, growing up in an abusive household in 1940’s Arkansas, who struggles to find a way to a sense of self-worth and hope for the future, and how her life is changed forever by her friendship with a German P.O.W.

The book deals with child abuse, racial issues, and xenophobia. It is dark and painful, yet through her focus on relationships and Patty’s love of learning, Greene is able to hold out hope–for both Patty Bergen and our world.

What Books Made Your October Reading List?

Please share in the comments any books you’d recommend.