Summer Reading

I love summer. Have I ever mentioned that before? I love the long days, the green, the cloudless blue skies. I love how the warm makes everyone in Moscow relax all of a sudden. The traffic jams dissipate as everyone clears out to their dachas and people lighten up, like waking up from a nasty dream and realizing, “Hey! I don’t have to be a jerk today!” It’s nice 🙂

One of the other things about Moscow summers is that they can be a bit lonely…or refreshingly quiet, depending on how you look at it! The expat crowd clears out during the summer months, so most our friends are on other continents and there just aren’t a lot of people around or things going on.

This makes for lots of last-minute, surprise get-togethers (as people pass through town). It also makes for lots of quiet.

I’ve been going a bit nuts with library books on my kindle – devouring novels and maxing out my library card. I so enjoy coming home while it’s still light out and reading ’til bedtime while economist husband studies the markets, or taking my lunch break  near one of the city fountains, and getting lost in a book until my 45 minutes are up.

Do you have time to read this summer? What are you reading? Here are a few of my recommendations from recent reads:

  • Columbine: Haunting and fascinating – a journalist attempts to answer the question why Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold massacred their fellow students in 1999. Sheds light on a lot of media and other myths that sprung up following the event that were so stamped on my high school memory.
  • Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Hope and Death in a Mumbai Undercity – another thought-provoking read by a journalist who spent four years hanging out in Mumbai slums, chronicling the daily lives of people there and trying to answer questions about what perpetuates poverty and the effect it has on people. Beautifully written and fascinating.
  • Paris To The Moon: New Yorker writer Adam Gopnik chronicles the years he and his family lived in Paris. He’s a fantastic writer with such a witty, interesting outlook on things. Chapters on everything from politics to food, apartment hunting to fashion shows. An interesting perspective on modern Paris. Highly enjoyable.
  • Dancing on My Grave: This was recommended to me by some ballerina friends here in Moscow. It’s the autobiography of Gelsey Kirkland, a Ballanchine dancer who got addicted to drugs. Dark and a bit surreal, I liked it for the insight behind the scenes into the dance world, and also the perspective on drug addiction.

All for now…

P.S. photo from here

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