In the last little while I have read quite a bit while on the bus or waiting, waiting, waiting at the hospital but not a lot has sunk in. So I will probably have to reread quite a lot. Not a problem - I do that anyway.
Two books are worth mentioning though. I have just completed No Chopsticks Required (My families unexpected year in Shanghai) and it was very close to what Kath Lockett and her family are going through at the moment. In 2008 the author, Katrina Beikoff and her partner (now husband), accepted an offer to work on the English-language Shanghai Daily for twelve months. They took with them their two children (both under 5) and dived in the deep end. Given their almost complete lack of any sort of preparation (unlike Kath's family) I was very surprised that they didn't drown. In the time they were there China experienced a massive earthquake killing over 80 000 people, an uprising in Tibet, the Beijing Olympics and the melamine-tainted milk scandal. And Katrina and her family were way out of their comfort zone on so many levels; language, culture, food, education, politics ...And the list goes on. And yet, by the end of the year, Katrina was in two minds about returning to Australia or extending their stay for another year. Hopefully Kath's life will also settle down and become fun again very quickly.
The other book was one I found today. Our local shopping centre has a cheap book stall which I find it very, very hard to go past despite knowing that our shelves desperately need culling not adding to. And I am such a good customer that the stallholder usually gives me further discounts on the already cheap books. Today's find, which I snapped up quickly, was Travelling Light by Tove Jansson. Jansson (1914 -2001) was a Swedish author and is probably best known as the creator of the Moomintroll series - books for children. They were first translated into English 60 years ago and have been in print ever since. And there is lots of Moomin merchandise out there too. Both Marie and Pia K have Moomin objects I lust after. I still reread the series every year or so. However, when Jansson was in her fifties she turned her attention to writing adult fiction. I have a couple of them which I also reread regularly, but had never heard of this one which was first translated into English last year. A find! Which I expect to guzzle over the next few days. Travelling Light was published by Sort of Books, a publisher which is new to me. And there were another two books mentioned on the cover that I had not come across. Treats in store.