I and my family have made our annual trek to the North Shore of Lake Superior for Thanksgiving weekend. This is year #10. We set up residence for 4 days in a condo at the beautiful Lutsen Resort, only 5o miles from the Canadian border. It also happens to be site of my niece’s wedding, which took place on the beach in the middle of a blizzard.
Normally we would partake of a fabulous Thanksgiving buffet in the lodge, but alas, that was not possible this year. Never mind, we brought our own food.
In between eating, winter hiking, and watching season 4 of The Crown, I’m slowly working through the stack of books I brought with me. I always use this weekend to push me closer to reaching my yearly goal of 50 books!
Here the books I’m working my way through this weekend.
I like to read books about Minnesota while in the north woods; this year I’m reading the following two, which also happen to be by the same author.
Minnesota 1918: When Flu, Fire, and War Ravaged the State, by Curt Brown
In 1918, Minnesota and its residents were confronted with a series of devastating events that put communities to the test, forcing them to persevere through untold hardship. First, as the nation immersed itself in the global conflict later known as World War I, some 118,000 Minnesotans served in the war effort, both at home and “over there”–and citizens on the home front were subjected to loyalty tests and new depths of government surveillance. While more than 1,400 Minnesotans were killed on the battlefields, an additional 2,300 soldiers were struck down by another destructive force working its way across the globe in 1918: the influenza pandemic, which left more than 10,000 dead in Minnesota alone. Then, in mid-October, fires raged across 1,500 square miles in seven counties of northeastern Minnesota, leaving thousands homeless and hundreds dead.Amazon.com
Frozen in History: Amazing Tales from Minnesota’s Past, by Curt Brown
Escaped Nazis in northern Minnesota. A jilted countess on the prairie. A Minneapolis mobster. Each Sunday, columnist Curt Brown gives Star Tribune readers a look back at their moving, entertaining and inspiring history. Those columns are collected in “Frozen in History: Amazing Tales from Minnesota’s Past.” Guided by reader tips, Brown uncovers the unexpected – from the state’s beginnings to its out-sized impact on computers and the space race.Amazon.com
And because I always have to be working on a book about China, this one is on my list:
City on Fire: The Fight for Hong Kong, by Antony Dapiran
Through the long, hot summer of 2019, Hong Kong burned. Anti-government protests, sparked by a government proposal to introduce a controversial extradition law, grew into a pro-democracy movement that engulfed the city for months. Protesters fought street battles with police, and the unrest brought the People’s Liberation Army to the doorstep of Hong Kong. Driven primarily by youth protesters with their ‘Be water!’ philosophy, borrowed from hometown hero Bruce Lee, this leaderless, technology-driven protest movement defied a global superpower and changed Hong Kong, perhaps forever.Amazon.com
And for something entirely different, I picked this one up. It’s quirky!
Class: A Guide Through the American Status System, by Paul Fussell
The bestselling, comprehensive, and carefully researched guide to the ins-and-outs of the American class system with a detailed look at the defining factors of each group, from customs to fashion to housing.Amazon.com
And finally, in keeping with my long term goal of eventually reading a book about every United States President, I’m working on this one:
In a one-term presidency, James K. Polk completed the story of America’s Manifest Destiny—extending its territory across the continent by threatening England with war and manufacturing a controversial and unpopular two-year war with Mexico. “A crucial architect of modern America, James K. Polk deserves to be elevated out of the mists of history”Amazon.com
And when I look up from my reading, this is the view….
What are you reading these days?