My two big summer reading goals:
- Read Kristin Lavransdatter
- Read aloud the entire Narnia series to my 10 year old son
I finished Kristin a couple of weeks ago. Very brief background; it is the life story of a woman living in 14th century Norway and her struggles with sin, faith, and family. It was originally written as three books; The Wreath, The Wife, and The Cross. I loved every minute of it. I did find the names quite challenging and honestly couldn't follow the details of the politics. What drew me in were the scenery and the real, vivid, complex characters. I so strongly related to Kristin as a mother - I loved that Undset wrote about her getting up in the middle of the night with fussy babies. What I found most moving was the way the faith of the Norwegian people was so seamlessly woven into their daily lives. We don't have that here and I'm not even sure it exists anymore.
It's a huge book and I stink at book reviews so I'm not even scratching the surface here. Kristin instantly landed in my lifetime top ten. Please chime in if you've read it.
I found the Narnia books to be more of a personal challenge. I adored The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe but the other Narnia books sort of fell flat with me. I attempted to read them to my older daughter but I gave up and she ended up reading them on her own so this was my first time to read the whole series myself. My daughter also didn't care much for the series but my son enjoyed every minute and I wonder if this is one of those stories better suited to boys.
Anyway, we pushed though and finished The Last Battle yesterday. In my mind, the whole series was redeemed in the last three chapters of this book through which I couldn't keep my voice from quavering. It was perfect and magnificent and his description of that final place was everything I truly hope it is. (Though I have been furiously googling regarding poor Susan!)
Other general reading notes as I haven't done a book post in ages:
My 14 yo is reading Braving the Elements: The Stormy History of American Weather which I read about here.
My 10 year old son is making his way through Jean Craighead George's One Day In... series.
I'm stuck not reading anything right now because where do you go from Kristin Lavransdatter?