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Reading Slothfully

I was told in elementary school that I only could read at half the speed for success in college. Oh well, one benefit of slow reading is you get to live with the characters a longer period of time. I read in a vain attempt to better understand people. At my other homes, I'm known as a spouse, pop, guy in the choir, physical chemist, computer/web dilettante and child-care provider. In theory, I'm a published author, if you consider stuff like Quenching Cross Sections for Electronic Energy Transfer Reactions Between Metastable Argon Atoms and Noble Gases and Small Molecules to count as publications. I've strewn dozens of such fascinating things to the winds.

Currently reading

A Christmas Carol
Charles Dickens
The Way Some People Die
Ross Macdonald
Envy of Angels
Matt Wallace
The Fellowship of the Frog
Edgar Wallace
Code of Conduct (The Jani Kilian Chronicles Book 1)
Kristine Smith
A Good Death
Christopher R. Cox
The Black Cargo
John P. Marquand
A Highland Christmas
M.C. Beaton
Tales from Moominvalley
Tove Jansson, Thomas Warburton
Moominland Midwinter
Tove Jansson, Thomas Warburton

Pied Piper

Pied Piper - Nevil Shute Oh, yes! Another lovely story by Nevil Shute. It's even got some airplanes and sailing about in the English Channel.

But mostly it's the story of an "old" man (70, not so old these days, or so I hope), John Howard, who needs a break from England after losing his son. So, in 1940, he goes off to southeast France for a fishing trip. He befriends a couple there who live in Geneva. They have two children, George and Sheila, who are 8 and 5 respectively. They worry about the coming war and convince Howard to take their kids back to England where they can wait out the war at their uncle's place.

As Howard makes his way across France and back to England, the Germans are in the process of invading France and taking it over. So Howard has to keep changing his travel plans. Along the way, he picks up additional small children and has something like seven of them in his entourage by the end of the book. He also joins up, for a time, with a young woman who would have been his son's bride, had said son not been killed flying in an RAF raid.

I don't know quite more to say. Nevil Shute is awesome, and while this might not be his best, it's certainly good enough. I've now read seven books by Shute, and can't wait to get going on another. Each one is a delight in its own way.