random thoughts

Summer Magic: Books are Medicine

Even though we couldn’t travel anywhere this summer, we did manage to have a lot of great ‘day-cations’ to various places around the southland. I think we went more places as a family this summer than any other one prior to it, but we just didn’t stay long and we had repeat trips to some places. It is nice to be able to get away even in your own region. I have a lot of favorites, but I think my most favorite day-cation is the one closest to our house. It is when we spent an afternoon at the Huntington (we live 2 miles away!). I cannot tell you what a relaxed thrill I get seeing my boys run through the grass without a care in the world! 🙂 I also love seeing the butterflies, dragonflies, and hummingbirds alighting all the lush vegetation there. So magical…which leads me to the reason for the post: summer magic.

The day-cations were certainly magical and most unforgettable.  There is nothing like a 5 year old belting the songs of a summer movie musical (even if it was last year’s summer movie) to lighten your load and make you realize why life is to be lived!  However, I must admit that, for me, reading books in the summer is the most magical and rejuvenating thing I do all year.  I don’t know what it is about ‘summer’ reading — but it is different.  I read everyday of the year, but for some reason what I read in the summer usually stays with me.  This summer is no different.  In fact it stands out as a recent example of books choosing me and not the other way around.  This post is not going to turn into a review, but I will briefly say a couple of things for those who like books.

Books are medicine.  I know this, and have always known this.  However, I am almost finished with my last read of the summer (The Hummingbird’s Daughter by Urrea) and I skipped to the book club pages at the end and read part of an interview with the author in which he says that he didn’t think his little book was going to make a difference and some old curandera told him not to be silly: books are medicine! Of course!  That is why I read– to mend what ails me.  I choose books (or they choose me) like I am choosing herbs at an apothecary.

Here is the pile of books I read from June-present moment (and my ranking out of five):

My Wicked Marquess by Galen Foley ***

The Moveable Feast by Hemingway **** (can’t escape the melancholy in this one)

The Hummingbird’s Daughter by Urrea ***** (in my pantheon of all-time favorite novels)

Lord of Ice by Foley ****