Finished: at long last The Hemingses of Monticello. After 30 listening hours, all in my car, it is with relief and awe that I completed this great book. I began it sometime in early summer and finished it a week ago. While I listened, I variously felt: skeptical and believing, impatient for story – up until about hour six, irritated by the lawyer and amazed by the researcher in author Annette Gordon-Reed, engaged, inspired and awed. I understand the reasons for praise and prizes.
An audiobook pattern has also emerged. Sometimes I find books that my husband and I can listen to together on drives, which means non-fiction. That’s why we listened to Reza Aslan’s Zealot. It’s also why I made it through about three-quarters of Burke Davis’ They Called Him Stonewall, A Life of Lt. General T.J. Jackson. What I learned during the latter: I like the quirky personality details, but my head goes blurry during all that military strategy stuff – basically the heart of the book. Scratch (most) military history from my reading list.
We are now listening to Paul Johnson’s George Washington, a super short biography that is packaged as an audiobook with Christopher Hitchens’ Thomas Jefferson, and Michael Korda’s Ulysses S. Grant (all part of the Eminent Lives collection.)
On my own I am zooming through the audiobook, American Gods. I decided to listen to Neil Gaiman’s work after reading about him on the blogs of some of my young friends.
Thank you Estella’s Revenge and others.
I also signed up for a local meet up where we are going to discuss the book. So far, I like this.
Reading reading includes Kate Atkinson’s Life after Life. Like it.
I posted my reading response to Audrey Shulman’s Three Weeks in December.