We are headed out West to celebrate my mother in law’s 70th birthday. There will be 13 children, 8 adults, and a poodle under one roof with the Grand Tetons as our glorious backdrop. We will fish, hike, float the Snake river, try our best to stay out of the way of the bears and maybe even sneak in some quiet time in the hammock with a book. I have gathered my Summer book recommendations from friends, family, and visits to Parnassus Bookshop! I hope something from the list will inspire your Summer reading! I’m signing off for the Summer to spend time with my family! I wish you all a Happy Summer and I promise more Bread and Honey Nourishment in September!
Way of the Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman: One of my closest friends recommended this book to me as pure inspiration for the soul! The protagonist, Dan Millman, a world-champion gymnast, finds himself lost in his own life. One night he stumbles upon an all-night gas station and the sage teacher, Socrates. Together, they embark on a spiritual odyssey to discover the true meaning and purpose of life. I’m half-way through and loving Socrate’s nuggets of wisdom!
From Here, You Can’t See Paris by Michael S. Sanders: My husband loved this book. It’s the true story of a sleepy hilltop village in France (population 159) that resurrects when a chef and his wife choose Les Arques for their new restaurant. Sanders sets out to chronicle a “behind the scenes” look at the French restaurant and ends up inspired by the community and their rich culture. The book delves into the French Michelin star system, provencal food, making of foie gras, boar hunts, and the quaint life of a French village! Viva la France!
Families of the Vine by Michael S. Sanders: My husband liked his first book so much that he bought the second one and was just as pleased. In Families of the Vine, Michael Sanders moves to France with his family and spends two years following three family vintners in Bordeaux whose destinies are determined each year by the soil, the weather, the vine, and the fruit. It’s an authentic and heart-felt portrait of the dedication, the passion, and the drama of making wine! It will make you appreciate and admire that next glass of Malbec!
The Power of One by Bryce Courtenay was top on my son Charlie’s Summer reading list. He says, “It’s a real heart-grabber that will make you want to discover your own: Power of One.” The story is about Peekay and his coming of age saga growing up in the brutal and beautiful backdrop of South Africa during WWII. With the help of two interesting friends, Peekay finds the courage to dream and prevail despite great heartbreak, and discover that it only takes one to change the world.
The Rent Collector by Cameron Wright is the fictional tale based on the true story of a Cambodia family who makes their living scavenging Stung Meanchey, the largest waste dump in Cambodia. Sang Ly does everything in her power to heal her ailing son, even appealing to their bad-tempered rent collector to teach her how to read. It becomes the journey of one woman to heal her son and another woman’s second chance for redemption. My best bud Anne just gifted me The Rent Collector and signed the inside, “My new favorite book. I can’t wait for you to devour!”
Rodin’s Lover by Heather Webb is the mesmerizing tale of art, sculpture and passion in Belle Époque Paris. I picked up this book because I have always admired the French sculptor, Rodin and was curious about the woman who was the muse for many of his famous works of art. Camille Claudel, also an aspiring sculptress, found herself working in Rodin’s atelier where together their passion would inspire art, love and heartbreak. Probably goes in the beach read category!
Paris Red by Maureen Gibbon is set in the 19th century Parisian art society of dance halls, cafes, and art ateliers. The story is told from the perspective of Victorine Meuret, the muse of the French painter, Eduoard Manet’s scandalous painting, Olympia, that rocked the art world, was a harbinger of Impressionism, and made the artist famous.
My Best by Alain Ducasse: In France, the true celebrities are the Michelin-starred chefs and Alain Ducasse is one of the best. This cookbook is a smorgasbord of Ducasse’s signature dishes inspired by his love of Provence! This book is heaven for me!
The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George is the book I wish I had thought of! What could be better than an enchanted bookshop on the river Seine in Paris where the owner, Monsieur Perdu, doles out the perfect book to med the heart and the soul while at the same time trying to heal his own. I have high hopes for this one!
A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare: This one may come as a surprise to you, but I’m hoping that Sir William will help me work out my plot for my next book. I chose A Midsummer Night’s Dream because Shakespeare successfully blurs the lines between the spirit and the material world.
I wish you all a great Summer!