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Friday, January 26, 2018

What's Your Weekend Read?

Provence on a cloudy afternoon, 2013.

For the weekend I plan to dig into Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward, a book which won the 2017 National Book Award and which was highly praised this week at lunch with my book-reading friends. I'm looking forward to starting it.

Last night I stayed up late to finish reading Sulfer Springs, in which author William Kent Krueger shares his views on US / Mexico border issues by sending his protagonist, Cork O'Connor, to southern Arizona. Cork, a former sheriff in Minnesota, and his new wife, Rainy, are down on the border searching for Rainy's son, Peter. Peter, a recovered addict, left Rainy a garbled voice mail in which it sounds like he confesses to a murder; their subsequent efforts to talk to Peter on the phone fail. So it's off to Tucson and further south, with the standard border characters making an appearance (border patrol, drug runners, land grabbers, winemakers (yes, winemakers in Arizona), etc.). It was an entertaining read.

And speaking of wine, this weekend I also plan to find my copy of A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle. Mayle died earlier this month in France at the age of 78. I vividly remember the first time I read A Year in Provence. It was many years ago on a very hot Saturday afternoon in late August. I was midway through the book when Mayle's writing about the people of France, and the food and drink of the country, finally compelled me to head out to the grocery store for bread, cheese, olives, and a good bottle of white wine, all to enjoy while being entertained by his adventure in Provence. Now that was motivational writing. I enjoyed his other work through the years as well. Farewell Mr. Mayle. And thank you. 

Memorial in the New York Times, January 25, 2018

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