Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Yada Yada and Orphans

The pile by the bed suddenly grew again, but this time I'm happy about it. The next Yada Yada book came in, and I can't wait to read it. It's been a good week so far, and tomorrow is my anniversary. Jesse and I will have been married four years. I'm planning something special for the whole family, and I can't wait to surprise them. Usually I'm not very good at surprises, I tend to give gifts as soon as I get them, but this time I've been pretty sneaky, and I just have to hold out 24 more hours.

The Yada Yada Prayer Group Gets Down by Neta Jackson is another fabulous entry in this series. Jodi Baxter is back with the rest of the mixed group of women. I can identify so much with Jodi; we both tend to take our faith and God for granted, and we both need reminders to pray always. In this book the prayer group is attacked while in Jodi's home by a knife-wielding young woman. How each woman reacts to the drama changes the group and the reader. Jackson is not a writer who allows you to read her books passively. She drags you into the book until each character becomes dear and you are forced to face your own feelings and faith. This book made me realize three things: 1) I need to look at my own prejudices closely and examine how I treat other people, 2) I need to pray with my husband; our lives will only be better for it, and 3) I want a group of friends like Jodi's! Even with the misunderstandings and anger, these women encourage each other to grow, and not just in faith. This book really starts to explore some of the members of the group that received less time in the last book, and I just can't wait to read the next one and get to know everyone even better.

Orphans Preferred by Christopher Corbett is a fun history of The Pony Express. Corbett does his best to piece through the mythology of the "Pony", but he doesn't always have a lot to work with. Sometimes he spends pages explaining all the different possibilities of a fact which isn't all that important. There are neat, short biographies of some fascinating characters from the Wild West including Buffalo Bill Cody and Wild Bill Hickock. Corbett treats the whole book as fun and not to be taken too seriously, and that's exactly how I suggest you read the book. He does his best to give us the facts, but sometimes the legend is more interesting, so he recounts that as well. I have a new understanding of The Pony Express and some of the people who helped create its myth, but many mysteries remain, including the "orphans preferred" newspaper advertisement.

I just finished reading Crippen by John Boyne-definitely a must read! I'll review that one tomorrow. Potty-training of Mia is going very well! No accidents in several days, now we have to get through the night.