Monday, January 13, 2014

Book Nook - My Life and Hard Times

I've been doing some thinking about Book Nook and what I want to do with it this year (as well as thinking about some of the books I'd like to read this year - hello Wuthering Heights).  And I think I'm going to make a tiny change to Book Nook.  See, when I started posting about books (with this post) my intention was to only write about books that I love.  And I've stayed true to that - every book on Book Nook has been a book that I've enjoyed.  But some books have been last minute what-am-I-going-to-write-about-today kinds of books.  So going forward, I'll only post a Book Nook post if there's a book that I'm really excited to tell you about, one that I've just put down & have to spread the news about.  You know that kind of book!

But I started thinking it's not fair for me to have Book Nook on Mondays & then not post anything that day.  So, if I have no book to share that week, I'll post a lovely picture related in some way to books or reading.  I'm actually really excited about this photography challenge I've given myself!

Anyway, Book Nook will continue to be here on Mondays.  If there's no fabulous book that week, I'll post a fabulous picture instead!  And, as always, if you have a great book you've been reading, please share.  We'd all love to hear about it (and then promptly reserve it at our local library)!

So, on to this week's Book Nook: My Life and Hard Times by James Thurber:

This is in no way intended to be a book about architecture or geography.  James Thurber, celebrated humorist, writes about his youth in Columbus, Ohio and some of the crazy situations he and his family found themselves.  However, for me, the book was all about the house.  In October, I had the chance to do some photos at the Thurber House for Country Living Magazine (check out this link for the magazine and to see my shot of the Thurber House on the cover!).  The house has loads of character, and walking through the rooms, knowing that Thurber and his family once lived here, seeing the pictures that adorn the walls of them - well, the book and the house seem to go hand in hand.  Having visited the house before I read the book, I was able to visualize the setting with great detail as I enjoyed the stories.  Reading the book enhances the experience of visiting the house, and vice versa.

By the way, here's another shot of the Thurber House that I really like (you can tell it was Fall when this was taken!):

For me, it was also an enjoyable book about geography & Columbus history.  Thurber writes about areas in Columbus that I know - streets, suburbs, landmarks.  It's fascinating to think about life in Columbus at the time of some of these tales, 100 years ago.  In the chapter entitled The Day the Dam Broke, Thurber's Aunt was in a movie theatre on High Street (in 1913), where there was a piano playing in the pit.

There are funny stories about the old family car, the night a ghost in the house caused havoc and Thurber's days at OSU.  I laughed throughout the stories, which got the Bachsters' attention, and they said they wanted to read the stories, too.

Which is totally fine by me, but we're going to go see the house first!


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