A Wing in the Door

A Wing in the Door by Peri Phillips McQuay is by turns a beautiful and a frustrating book. It narrates the fate of a female red-tailed hawk taken illegally by a would-be falconer from her nest when only a month old. The hawk — named Merak — is confiscated by Canadian authorities and kept at

Christmas Eve hawking and walking

We went for a walk on Christmas Eve morning. On the way to the trail, we saw this guy hunting for his breakfast. He posed for us in a variety of postures. He looks chilly with his feathers all fluffed, doesn’t he? He changed branches after studying us coldly for a few minutes. Then he

The Messiah

Last year, I wrote a post about the reasons I love Handel’s Messiah. It’s one of the posts that was lost when I switched hosts. But again I’m thinking of this sublime weaving of art and truth, delighting in it in my kitchen, in my car, and with my children. On Sunday, my husband was

Outliers

My pastor mentioned Outliers in a Sunday school class. He’d read part of it, and it sounded interesting. I picked up a copy at the library to read, but I wasn’t expecting it to provoke so much thought or to have such an impact. It’s really given me a lot to think about. “Outliers” are

I Saw Three Ships

The girls and I read Elizabeth Goudge’s I Saw Three Ships last year for Christmas, but it didn’t wow any of us. In fact, none of us even remembered it. This year was different. It’s a short chapter book, and we read through it in a more concentrated way than we did last year, in

Afterthought

After writing this post about the role of experts in the morphing of the Christmas season in area public schools, I read Alice’s post about how Christians are partly to blame. She makes some great points about Christmas being meaningful to Christians, but not to people of other faiths, or of no faith. Our church

Literacy and empathy

When we talk about the death of the novel, what we are really talking about is the possibility that empathy, however minimal, would no longer be attainable by those for whom the novel has died. If the novel has died for the bureaucrats who run our country, then they are more likely not to pause

Rufous Redtail

I read this book when I was around 10, and I’ve always remembered it as one of the best. I didn’t remember all the details, but I remembered some of them. Mostly I remembered it as a book that had a strong impact, opening my eyes to new knowledge and moving me deeply. You won’t

The Lost Art of Reading

David Ulin’s Lost Art of Reading has been a thought-provoking little book. Described as a “ruminative essay,” this compact reflection on the distinctiveness of reading, and its role in an increasingly networked information age, doesn’t really make an argument against technology or predict the death of reading. But it does acknowledge some ways books and