One of my readolutions for this year was to read more than 25% non-fiction. So far, my log records an even split – who knew?! Here are a few of my current preoccupations.
Madeline Levine’s Ready or Not: Preparing Our Kids to Thrive in an Uncertain and Rapidly Changing World (2020) is in my stack thanks to the NYTimesBookReview. But it’s hard to imagine a more timely read. I wish I could pass this copy around (our library duedates have been suspended until the system reopens) because even though I didn’t even have to wait in a queue for it, her philosophy and approach is not only relevant but essential in today’s “rapidly changing world”.
One of the central tenets of her approach is to cultivate qualities like curiosity and flexibility in children, so it’s not surprising that there are no bullet-point lists here, no jounallingassignments, no textboxes or bolded type catch-phrases here. She urges parents to think rather than simply react—so self-help readers should look elsewhere—but there is an abundance of useful information and it’s presented so clearly that it’s easy to envision the strategy that could emerge from the studies and statistics she presents.
Rumer Godden’s A House with Four Rooms (1989) is the second volume of her autobiography, picking up where A Time to Dance, No Time to Weep (1987) left off. How fortunate I felt, to have requested and picked up both volumes from the library before it closed mid-March.
There is very little overlap with the volume she wrote with her sister about their earliest experiences as children in India, Two Under the Indian Sun (1966). In fact, the trio makes for an ideal reading experience because the more overt storytelling in the sisters’ volume creates a sense of intimacy, which she secures in the autobiographical volumes, which are arranged in essays on various themes. When I’ve explored all four of the titular rooms, I’ll delve into Anne Chisholm’s biography.