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A Book to Read and Love: The Physician - Noah Gordon

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A short summary of The Physician: A medieval doctor's dram from London to Persia and back again.

Questions to ponder while reading The Physician: How far would you travel to learn?
What would you give up to follow your dream?

My thoughts about The Physician: A great historical tale on the evolution of a doctor.
Rich in detail.
Totally engrossing.

A Book to Read and Love: The Betty Davis Club - Janis Lotter

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A short summary of The Betty Davis Club: A cross-country road trip for a script and a profit.

Questions to ponder while reading The Betty Davis Club: Have you ever misjudged the value of something?
Do you like to drive?
My thoughts about the book: Fun book!
Beach read!
Requires a boozy beverage!

Spectacular Saints: St. Margaret of Cortona

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Dear Henry,
A little while ago I read The Life and Miracles of St. Margaret of Cortona by Father Giunta Bevengnati and I think she is an under-rated saint.
As an incorruptible, I am surprised how little is known about her.  She is the perfect saint for today.
She was born in 1247 and her mother died while she was young. Her father remarried and a contentious relationship developed between her and her step-mother.  She left home as a teenager and became the mistress of a nobleman for the next ten years, bearing him a son.
One day, the nobleman didn't come home and his dog led St. Margaret to his murdered corpse.  She left his home, with her son, that same day. 
When she tried to return to her father's home, she was refused a place to stay and instead found herself in Cortona and at the mercy of the Franciscan friars.  Originally, her motives were suspect and it took her three years of petitions to gain acceptance into the Third Order.   She would struggle with her "reputat…

A Book to Read and Love: Broken Angels - Gemma Liviero

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A short summary of the book Broken Angels: Three perspectives of the Nazi regime.

Questions to ponder while reading Broken Angels: What would you do to survive?
Have you ever regretted your actions?
My thoughts about the book: Really, the Nazi regime was beyond horrific.
A difficult book to put down.
I think for somethings, there is no earthly redemption.

A Beloved Bunch of Books: The Lessons I Wish I Learned In High School

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Have you ever read a book and thought, wow, I wish I realized this years ago?

Sadly, none of the books on this list are easiest reads and some (I'm looking at you Ayn Rand) seem to have soliloquies that go on forever.

That being said, these are the books that I wish I had read much earlier in life and feel that if I had, my life would have been different.


First up in my list of lessons is the book Slouching Toward Bethlehem by Joan Didion.  It is full of essays on the social issues of the 1960s, and the messages are still applicable today.

Especially the essay "Self Respect".

Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged is considered one of the premier works of literature on capitalism.  It is a book everyone loves to hate.  It also has 1,168 pages.

However, much of American life is founded on capitalism. It is very useful to know how it works.

And it may just change your mind.

Shogun by James Clavell is another incredibly beefy book, but an engrossing one.

A tale of an Englishman turne…

A Book to Read and Love: One For the Blackbird, One For the Crow - Olivia Hawker

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A short summary of One For The Blackbird, One For The Crow: Surviving a frosty winter in Wyoming, following a murderous affair.

Questions to ponder while reading One For The Blackbird, One For The Crow: Could you have forgiven it?
Could you have lived with the shame?
My thoughts about the book: A story that tests the bounds of credulity.
I thought Beulah was really very odd.
Still, I couldn't put the book down...


A Book to Read and Love: Cry to Heaven - Anne Rice

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A short summary of the book Cry to Heaven: Living with the physically altering effects of a life-changing song.

Questions to ponder while reading Cry to Heaven: How is your relationship with your father?
Do you like opera?
My thoughts about the book: A great tale of playing the cards you were dealt.
There has to be a special place in purgatory for parents who hurt their children.
*Note* this is about the Castrati and therefore may not be for everyone.