Saturday, June 28, 2014

The Moon By Night

I started my day out with a run. I don't measure exactly how long, but it was probably somewhere between three and four miles. I ended up running by Denny's, where the smell of bacon tortured me. When I ran through Pioneer Park (Alaskaland!!!), I dropped by and saw my sister, who works there.  The Chena River, after dropping somewhat, is higher than ever after last night's rain.On my cool-down walk, I pulled up the invasive weed, bird vetch, along my driveway. All in all, a nice way to start a day.

For my very first blogged book review, I'm starting with the first book I completed after school got out for the summer:  Madeleine L'Engle's "The Moon By Night."

Madeleine L'Engle is, as always, eminently readable. There is something about reading L'Engle that is like curling up with a blanket and a cup of cocoa. This book is a very pleasant read - the second in a series about the Austin family. Fourteen year old Vicky is the protagonist, and in this book, she and her family are spending the entire summer traveling across the U.S. and Canada. Older brother John, sister Suzy and little brother Rob are along for the trip. Two young men fall for Vicky along the way, one that her family likes and approves of, and one of whom they don't. Vicky, who has always felt like the plain and unremarkable one in her family, finally has a summer experience that makes her like who she is and, especially, who she is becoming.

I love the frequent usage of Psalm 121 throughout the story. Vicky suffers a crisis of faith, because the psalm tells her that God watches over her, and that the sun will not harm her by day, nor the moon by night. She thinks of Anne Frank's mother telling her that psalm, and how God didn't watch out for Anne Frank. Incidentally, this is my favorite psalm. I used to read it to Emma when she was little and would get scared about things. This book takes place during the Cold War and nuclear arms race, which figures heavily into Vicky's fears.

This book also gave me a new favorite quote - "Comparisons are odious."

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