Avalanche Lily’s Bedside Book Pile

This new column is where I will list–and sometimes include short reviews–the books, periodicals, web pages, and catalogs that I’m currently reading. There will also be occasional mentions of DVDs that we’ve watched. We don’t own (or desire) a television, but we do have a Netflix subscription. (We watch DVDs on our laptops.) Our evenings here at the Rawles Ranch are very quiet, especially in the winter months. We’re all voracious readers.

Here are the current top-most items on my perpetual bedside pile:

  • Or Perish in the Attempt: The Hardship and Medicine of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Dr. David Peck analyzes the medical details gleaned from the journals of the Lewis and Clark’s little 7,700 mile, 2-1/2 year journey. I’ve just started this, but it looks fascinating.
  • I recently finished Glenn Beck’ s novel “The Overton Window“. It was an interesting read, a plausible scenario for the future, but the ending left me hanging. I’m a bit miffed about that. 🙁 Hey Glenn, if you’re reading this: Are your going to write a sequel so we can know what happens to Noah and Molly?
  • The Timberdoodle catalog. One of my favorite homeschooling supply catalogs. We use a lot of their history (Story of the World series, both adult and elementary sets), science (Christian Kids Explore…..) and language: Latin and Greek (Song School…) items.
  • Jim and I recently watched the classic 1943 Jack Warner movie Watch on the Rhine on DVD. This one was a “pre-view”, before letting the kids watch it. We found that it is not suitable for children under age 13, for a couple of reasons: One, it is an adaptation of a Lillian Hellman a stage play, so there is a lot of dialogue to follow, and two, there is a killing (off camera), but a gun shot from a Luger P.08 is heard. This was not your typical Bette Davis film. (Her role wasn’t a venue for her usual dramatics.) Paul Lukas is definitely the show-stealer in this film. The movie is about a family that flees Germany just before World War II. I’d say this movie is a good primer to give teenagers an appreciation for the genuine liberty that we still (mostly) enjoy in the US.
  • We are currently working our way through the short-lived Firefly series. This is my first time watching it, and Jim’s third time. It is kind of a cool Libertarian Space-Western show. But I could definitely do without the “The Companion” Inara’s conversations with other folks in the show about her occupation. (Gag!!!)