A Few Favorite Reads in 2017

On a world submerged in words a few fathoms deep, sometimes a little help in narrowing down the reading choices to a select few can be quite helpful. And that’s what we aim to do this week with our reviews of what’s been keeping our eyeballs engaged during 2017 — think of these posts as rescue lines thrown into the depths if you will.

Let’s start with fiction shall we?

1.) In The Last Painting of Sara de Vos by Dominic Smith you’ll find lovely descriptions of art from the Dutch Golden Age, and how women painters were treated in the 17th Century. But don’t worry, this isn’t an art history heavy tome – there’s intrigue, suspense and a feeling of lushness that will plump up any dryness in an art-deprived soul. Enjoy with a few bites of frikandel and oliebollen for Dutch flavor.

2.) The first time I read The Elegance of The Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery I was in love. It’s set in Paris and features a highly intelligent concierge, who’s kept her smarts under wraps while serving the luxury apartment occupants. There’s wit, philosophy, cultural satire and tea parties. Recommend to read while drinking jasmine green tea with chocolate eclair nibbles.

Now for non-fiction.

3.) A Dog’s Gift: The Inspiring Story of Veterans & Children Healed by Man’s Best Friend by Bob Drury takes us into the world of training therapy dogs. And yes, reading this book will open your eyes to just what it takes to properly train dogs that enrich people’s lives. It’s not a simple or easy task, but the rewards are worth it. Enjoy with your favorite furry companion nearby.

4.) If you’ve ever wondered what the British were up to in Iraq during the beginning of this very long, uh, engagement that’s still rattling on – then Eight Lives Down by Chris Hunter is the book for you. He’s the guy they call to defuse IEDs, never an easy task – and his descriptions will have your hair on end. Best read with some mint tea and kebabs for added flavor.

5.) My last pick for y’all is Ashley’s War: The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield by Gayle Tzemach Lemmon. Crack open this book if you want an introduction to brave, kick-ass women who were ready, willing and able to operate on front combat lines. Yes, the Army is changing, and it’s about time. Women can fight and die for their country? Yep. Read and relish with all your usual snacking choices.

As always, revel in turning those pages.

[Img.Src: Smith. Barbery. Drury. Hunter. Lemmon.]

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