In which Ruth does some holiday reading

Oh my giddy aunt! I have just read the best religiousy book ever. There is a rumble going on in churchy circles about this new woman called Nadia. She has popped up on Twitter @Sarcasticluther and in the Church Times and everyone is saying, “Have you read the book by that tattooed priest?” Ok, maybe not everyone but loads of folk are. And yes, she does have tattoes, lovely Mary Magdalene tattoes all up her arms. Not a little bluebird on your ankle or a butterfly on your coy shoulder kind of tattoes. No, these are big bruiser tattoes which tempt me greatly. The book is called Cranky, Beautiful Faith and is Nadia’s journey with God. She was/is a stand-up comic, an alcoholic, and unlikely pastor in the Lutheran church in Colorado. In fact she founded a mission church called House for All Sinners and Saints and blogs regularly and is becoming the public speaker everyone wants to hear, including me. The book is gloriously honest and outspoken and it made me want to be so much braver. if you like Anne Lamott and can cope with the F-word then read this book. 5 stars.

The next book I read on holiday was a Christmas pressie from Son #2 called Wonder which was absolutely unputdownable. This is one of those books which you’re not sure if it is for children, young adults, adults. I don’t think it matters. I don’t really want to tell you what it is about either or what the themes are but I’m pretty sure we will have it as a Book Group choice soon. It is American and about a young boy but there are other voices too. The young boy has a disability. There are references to Star Wars. It gets excellent reviews from everyone but please read it without knowing too much more. I envy you reading it for the first time. 5 stars.

Our next Book Group book is Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. The theme of this book is not new – wife goes missing, husband gets accusing of murder. It is quite a long book and took a wee while to get into because neither of the characters are particularly appealing. However I did find myself wondering how it was going to end. The author is good at the psychological thriller and there are so many twists and turns but the ending won’t please everyone. It was definitely a page-turner and kept me guessing. Not sure why I didn’t love it so 3.5 stars.

Sean gunLast night I finished another of my Christmas pressies – Solo by William Boyd. Some time ago I heard Boyd being interviewed on the wireless about being asked to write this latest James Bond book. As you know, the movies are all set in the era in which they are made, but this book is set in the swinging sixties when James is about 45, which would be accurate according to Ian Fleming’s last Bond book. There are some lovely London bits in the 60s but the ‘Bond girls’ are very modern and feisty and independent. So even a feminist can read this quite comfortably! Bond is sent to a fictitious country in West Africa to sort out a civil war, which he does with a twist. Good read. I’d love to read a Bond book written by a woman. #justsaying  3.5 stars (As this book was in hardback I always take the dust cover off to keep it nice when I’m reading it. This book has the most wonderfully designed inside hard cover which I just loved. Go and just have a peak in a shop at the two covers and how they compliment one another.)

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