A box was left at the usual dropoff point, the place on the front walkway near the edge of the drive that looks like a front porch only to the driver of the big brown truck. I'd been looking for it for a few days, my latest order from Amazon.
It's an interesting collection of books, three books that have nothing to do with one another, that might appear to not have been ordered for the same reader.
The Lemon Tree: An Arab, A Jew, and the Heart of the Middle East, by Sandy Tolan, is a book I heard about on NPR when it was published a few years ago. It sounded like a interesting book but I never got around to ordering it. I thought of this book as recently as a few months ago -- I even remembered its name -- although I have no idea what caused the title of this book to drift across my brain. So, when I heard The Lemon Trees was the next title for one of my book clubs, I thought If only it was the same book.... This is not the type of book that we usually read, and the selections recently have been rather lightweight. When I went to order it, I was surprised to find that it was exactly the book I had heard reviewed previously.
The second book is for another book discussion group, and it, too, is unusual for this group. The Lemon Tree because it is non-fiction and somewhat serious might be an appropriate book for this second group. But, what are we reading for December? I rubbed my eyes in disbelief when I saw the email: Anne Rice's Christ the Lord Out of Egypt. I almost didn't buy it, but decided I was being too much of a snob. I have so many preconceived ideas about this book and am convinced that I will hate it. I decided I wouldn't spend more than $10. It was .20 cents over and I needed the extra to qualify for free shipping (so I could have it arrive on time, in the middle of the yard, in the rain...). The book was stuffed into the box in a way that crumpled the cover. Even though it is a book that I'm not too excited to have, I wasn't happy at the packaging. I read the first chapter. It is about what I expected and don't know that I'll make it through the entire 337 pages, but I'll try to keep an open mind. Blahhhhh!
The third book, and the one that I was most eager to arrive, is Sandi Shelton's Kissing Games of the World. I've been reading Sandi's blog for awhile now and I always find it worth my time to stop by to read her posts. BlogLily recently wrote a review of it that prompted me to click open another browser window immediately and order Sandi's book. I read the first chapter this evening and knew that if I didn't put it down, I would stay up all night reading it. Unfortunately, I have to work tomorrow, so it will have to rest until tomorrow night, when I can start to read it while doing some preparatory baking for Thanksgiving.
It struck me after I leafed through the opening pages of each of these books, that I have one book that is about a historical figure, but is completely a work of fiction as there is no historical record for when Jesus of Nazareth was seven years old, one work of fiction, that, in the first few pages, grabs you with very real characters, and one non-fiction book that tells the stories of several people, who in telling their stories, are conducting a very real political act.