February Books February 28, 2020 – Posted in: Books
- The Hope of Glory by Jon Meacham – Beginning with “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do” and ending with “Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit,” Meacham captures for the reader how these last words epitomize Jesus’s message of love, not hate; grace, not rage; and extraordinary mercy rather than vengeance. For each saying, Meacham composes an essay on the origins of Christianity and how Jesus’s final words created a foundation for oral and written traditions that upended the very order of the world.
- See You on Sunday by Sam Sifton – “People are lonely,” Sam Sifton writes. “They want to be part of something, even when they can’t identify that longing as a need. They show up. Feed them. It isn’t much more complicated than that.” Regular dinners with family and friends, he argues, are a metaphor for connection, a space where memories can be shared as easily as salt or hot sauce, where deliciousness reigns. The point of Sunday supper is to gather around a table with good company and eat.
- Weather by Jenny Offill – Lizzie Benson slid into her job as a librarian without a traditional degree. But this gives her a vantage point from which to practice her true calling as a “fake shrink.” Life is stable and predictable until her old mentor hires her to answer mail from left-wingers worried about climate change and right-wingers worried about the decline of western civilization in response to her popular podcast Hell and High Water. Lizzie is forced to address the limits of her own experience while still trying to save everyone.
- Apeirogon by Colum McCann – Bassam Aramin is Palestinian. Rami Elhanan is Israeli. They inhabit a world of conflict that colors every aspect of their lives, from the roads they are allowed to drive on to the schools their children attend to the checkpoints, both physical and emotional, they must negotiate. With their blessing, and unprecedented access to their families, lives, and personal recollections, McCann began to craft Apeirogon, which uses their real-life stories to begin another—one that crosses centuries and continents, stitching together time, art, history, nature, and politics in a tale both heartbreaking and hopeful. The result is an ambitious novel, crafted out of a universe of fictional and nonfictional material, with these fathers’ moving story at its heart.