Confederates in the Attic: Dispatches from the Unfinished Civil WarConfederates in the Attic: Dispatches from the Unfinished Civil War by Tony Horwitz

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Tony Horwitz was born in Virginia and was fascinated by the Civil War as a child.  As an adult he was a journalist all over the world and then moved back to Virginia.  His interest in the war was rekindled by meeting some hardcore reenactors in his neighborhood.  He sets off to see how memory of the Civil War is affecting life in the South today.

I picked up this book after reading Blue Latitudes because I liked the writing. He meets up with reenactors, Daughters of the Confederacy, KKK recruiters, museum guides, and more while trying to understand why the memory of the Civil War is so important in the South still.

The Invention of WingsThe Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

For Sarah Grimke’s eleventh birthday she was given a slave girl named Handful.  Even at this age Sarah is opposed to slavery and tries to free Handful but isn’t allowed.  Instead she teaches her to read – an act for which they are both punished severely.  This novel follows the lives of Sarah and Handful as they come of age in antebellum South Carolina.

I feel like I’ve grown up with Sue Monk Kidd.  When I was little I read her stories in my parents’ Guidepost magazines.  Then as an adult I heard that she was writing novels which surprised me.  Turns out that as I was moving away from evangelical religion, so was she.  That led to my favorite book of hers, Dance of the Dissident Daughter.

The Invention of Wings is amazing.  I didn’t realize until the end that I was reading a story based on the real life of Sarah Grimke.  I don’t want to spoil it but at times I thought that it was a little far fetched but I guess the truth is stranger than fiction.

Takedown Twenty (Stephanie Plum, #20)Takedown Twenty by Janet Evanovich

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Stephanie Plum is trying to find Uncle Sonny, a local mob boss with family ties to most of her neighborhood.  No one is cooperating. Also, little old ladies are being strangled and left in dumpsters.  She’s having no luck with either case.

If you like the rest of the Stephanie Plum series than this one is good fun.  It doesn’t seem to advance the overall story line at all.  Stephanie spends most of the book whining about how she needs to grow up and get a real life.  She feels like she is in a holding pattern and that’s how this series is starting to feel too but it was a light, entertaining audio.