I know that there are people whose response to snow is to dash out and play in it.  I am not one of those people.  My response is a blanket and a book and – fortuitously – I have an historical novel that I am starting – The Good Lord Bird (the most basic meaning of the title appears to be an Ivory Billed Woodpecker) by James McBride.  It has gotten lots of attention this year with reviews like the one from the New York Times “McBride’s brilliant romp of a novel about {abolitionist James} Brown, narrated by a freed slave boy who passes as a girl.”  McBride’s first very successful book was a memoir/tribute to his mother, The Color of Water.  I am not far enough into this book to have an opinion yet but suspect it will provide an interesting discussion item.

So what are you reading?  or are you just out there with your snowshoes?


  1. Just finished reading Norwegian by Night by Derek Miller which was one of the Wall St Journal recommendations for mysteries from our Dec meeting. I thought it was different and liked it. I tried The Good Lord Bird and I really could not get into the story which did not appeal to me. The Color of Water is definitely his best book.

  2. I am about half way through The Good Lord Bird – reading it more slowly than I usually read and think it is worth the trouble. The narrator is a young black boy passing as a girl traveling with John Brown – not out of conviction but just trying to get by. At this point in the book they are in Boston raising money – here is his take on this
    “Some of the women broke into tears once the Old Man spoke. It made me a bit sad, truth be to tell it, to watch them hundreds of white folks crying for the Negro, for there weren’t hardly ever any Negros present at most of them gatherings, and them that was there was doodad up and quiet as a mouse. It seemed to me the whole business of the Negro’s life out there weren’t no different than it was out west, to my mind. It was like a big, long lynching. Everybody got to make a speech about the Negro but the Negro.”

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