What I’m Reading & Watching

First, the Netflix show Erased: This show is still really good. In episode 8, it goes dark really fast and rather intensely (violence and assualt). Peanut had been watching this show with me (after I watched each episode and screened it for fast-forwarding purposes), but she fell out of interest around episode 3. I’m quite happy that she did because well; there’s no way she could continue to watch it. I haven’t finished said episode yet because it’s obviously not something I want the kids wandering in on and how much free time do I get to myself to just watch Netflix? Not a lot.

I plowed through some books at the beginning of the year, including Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator, Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes, the rest of The Japanese Mind, and finished off A Song for Nagasaki.

My friend Laura had asked why I rated it 3 stars on Goodreads, so I figured this would be a good spot to elaborate. It’s the space stuff, really! I find it so hard to get into anything that takes place in space. I also felt like the plot stalled a couple of times, or at least had to be drug on a little bit. But what I did like is just how utterly crazy Willy Wonka is. I grew up with the Gene Wilder Willy Wonka, and while Gene did a great job at portraying Wonka as someone who’s eccentric (and deep); the books really show that Wonka was just plain crazy and I think Johnny Depp portrayed a much better version of Wonka. And I’m typically someone who prefers the original to the remixes.

(Laura, I have completely scandalized Greg by my confession of my three star rating for Great Glass Elevator AND that I haven’t read Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. So you’re in good company! 😛 )

This book is in Give Your Child the World, and I was quite thrilled when I saw it in a thrift store for $0.50. I bought it, read it in under an hour, and cried my eyes out at the end. I will be putting this into the rotation when we learn about World War II. The book is based on a true story, which makes it even more intense.

(I can also state that the book, Give Your Child the World is fantastic and highly recommended. I’ve found so many great books in that book that I would have never even come across on my own.)

I finally finished up The Japanese Mind on New Year’s Day. I found it quite interesting and could easily pick it up and put it down as I needed to. I think the title is a little eye-rolly – can you really sum up an entire population’s ‘mind’ in one book? I do like that the essays talked about the traditional view of things, and then if that view has changed – how it’s changed. I also like how balanced the essays are – it’s not a “100% Japan is amazing” or “Japan is the worst place on the planet” type book, which is appreciated.

I’m glad I came upon this book and will probably end up reading it again when I need something casual to read.

I also finished this book early in the New Year and oh my. Another book that I just put down and cried at the end of. I’ll be putting this book into the highschool study of World War II, simply because of the sometimes graphic descriptions of what happened after the atomic bombs were dropped.

What’s incredible is that Dr. Nagai saw first-hand the devastation of the bomb, had to bury his wife after she died in the bombing, saw the illnesses that came up after the bomb had been dropped, watched the Cathedral go up in flames; and still was steadfast in his Catholic faith. Even when people confronted him about why he was so at peace with everything; he never wavered. It really helped me put a lot of things into focus, and I now have something stored in my mind the next time it feels like God is absent.


I have some books in the currently reading stack – one for the local Charlotte Mason group discussion, The Tale of Genji (and check it out, a site devoted to it that has pictures and explanations, hooray!), and How to Cook Everything. I haven’t decided which book about Catholicism to read yet, but I’ve narrowed it down to a couple of books.

(As always, book links are affiliate links so I can continue to buy books – thank you for your support!)

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