I’m safely ensconced in a warm condo along the North Shore of Lake Superior. The fire place is on (switch-operated) and outside the temperature is 2 (!), with a howling wind. It’s a perfect reading getaway!
I may not succeed at knocking all four of these books off in the next four days, but I’m going to try:
China 1921: The Travel Guide, by Carl Crow and Paul French
“Set the time machine for China, the year 1921. Experience first-hand the Middle Kingdom’s Golden Age of Travel, a time when steamships and railways had opened up new possibilities for the adventurous sojourner, yet the country had “lost none of its unique charm” and remained “as interesting and strange as it was to Europeans who more than five hundred years ago read Marco Polo’s amazing account of the land of the Great Khan.”
This Camphor Press book is a specially abridged version of the original The Travelers’ Handbook for China by Shanghai-based American newsman Carl Crow. It comes with maps, illustrations, and has a new introduction from Paul French (Carl Crow biographer and author of the true crime bestseller Midnight in Peking).”
Tower of the Sun: Stories from the Middle East and North Africa, by Michael Totten
Prize-winning author Michael J. Totten’s gripping first-person narratives from the war zones, police states, and revolutionary capitals of the Middle East and North Africa paint a vivid picture of peoples and nations at war with themselves, each other, and—sometimes—with the rest of the world.
His journeys take him from Libya under the gruesome rule of Muammar Qaddafi to Egypt before, during and after the Arab Spring; from the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights in Syria on the eve of that country’s apocalyptic civil war to a camp on the Iran-Iraq border where armed revolutionaries threaten to topple the Islamic Republic regime in Tehran; from the contested streets of conflict-ridden Jerusalem to dusty outposts in the Sahara where a surreal conflict few have even heard of simmers long after it should have expired; and from war-torn Beirut and Baghdad to a lonely town in central Tunisia that seeded a storm of revolution and war that spread for thousands of miles in every direction.
Midnight in Siberia: A Train Journey into the Heart of Russia, by David Greene
Far away from the trendy cafés, designer boutiques, and political protests and crackdowns in Moscow, the real Russia exists.
Midnight in Siberia chronicles David Greene’s journey on the Trans-Siberian Railway, a 6,000-mile cross-country trip from Moscow to the Pacific port of Vladivostok. In quadruple-bunked cabins and stopover towns sprinkled across the country’s snowy landscape, Greene speaks with ordinary Russians about how their lives have changed in the post-Soviet years.
Rediscovering the Church Fathers: Who They Were and How They Shaped the Church, by Michael A.G. Haykin
While the church today looks quite different than it did two thousand years ago, Christians share the same faith with the church fathers. Although separated by time and culture, we have much to learn from their lives and teaching.
What are you reading this Thanksgiving weekend?
I’m currently reading, “The Red Chamber” by Pauline A. Chen. It is very loosely based on the Chinese classic, “Dream of the Red Chamber” (at 2500 pages and 400+ characters – have yet to read!) yet is less daunting at 400 pages and maybe 30+ characters. A factor of ten make a difference I suppose!
Well, I finished and found it a very good read, especially the ending – whoa. (although some descriptions in the story I could have done without…) Now I’m off to begin Qiu Xiaolong’s 6th book: The Mao Case (mystery series) I look forward to checking out China 1921!