What I’ve Been Reading Lately & My Latest Virtual Book Events (May 2020)

Now that month #3 of staying at home has passed and summertime with its more relaxed schedules is here, I think I’ve finally fallen into a more regular reading rhythm. Two of my favorite times of the day now are when I can sit outside and read during lunchtime and in the early evening.

I continued to attend virtual book events this past month. I thoroughly enjoyed the LA Times’ Book Club conversation with Emily St. John Mandel on May 19. More significantly, I got to “travel” to Norway last month for the Norwegian Festival of Literature in Lillehammer which took place May 29-31. In particular, I enjoyed the panel discussion on Maja Lunde’s success around the world and her lecture as winner of this year’s Bjørnson Prize.

Through my reading this month, I’ve traveled the world in time and place. I’ve experienced 1918 Philadelphia during the Spanish flu pandemic, an Indian immigrant community in London, a small Danish coastal town, and Norway in 2017/France in 2041. Here are my latest reads and listens. What have you been reading lately?


As Bright as Heaven by Susan Meissner

I loved this book. It provided a look at life in Philadelphia during the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic. It’s about a mother and father and their three young daughters who moved to Philadelphia to take advantage of the opportunity for the father to work with his uncle and eventually take over the uncle’s mortuary. Not too long after their arrival, the pandemic hits. In alternating perspectives of the mother and three daughters, readers follow this family through the pandemic – and World War I which is happening in the background – and beyond. It was fascinating to see the similarities and differences to our own current experience. It’s not an easy time for them, but it’s not all misery either. I highly recommend it.

Reading Challenges:


Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows by Balli Kaur Jaswal
(Audiobook narrated by Meera Syal)

In many ways, this book was what I expected, but in a couple of significant ways, it was not. And it was the combination of the expected and the unexpected that made me enjoy the book even more. I knew it was going to be an East-meets-West kind of book. Nikki, the Westernized daughter of Punjabi immigrants in London (and a law school drop-out who doesn’t really know what to do with her life), decides to take on teaching a writing class to traditional Punjabi widows at a Sikh community center. It turns out to be not your typical writing class in any sense. The women, many of whom are illiterate, begin sharing erotic stories which are transcribed by a fellow student. This “writing class” takes on a life of its own, and over time, Nikki becomes aware of secrets and mysteries within the Punjabi community. It’s a glimpse into an immigrant experience and culture and religion that I know little about. The characters are fun, the writing engaging, and the story fulfilling. In addition, there was such unexpected depth and substance to this novel which made it a wonderful reading experience.

Reading Challenges:


The Murder of Halland by Pia Juul
(Translated from the Danish by Martin Aitken)

I knew this wasn’t going to be a typical Nordic noir or murder mystery book, but I’m not sure what it ended up being for me. It begins with a murder and there is mystery surrounding the murder, but that’s not the main point of the book. It’s about the murder victim’s common law wife and how she deals with his death. She does not seem to mourn her husband as you’d expect nor does she seem interested in helping the police solve the crime. It’s more about her place in her community and her relationship with family members. She mourns her daughter’s decade-long absence from her life more than her partner’s death. She discovers secrets in her husband’s life. There’s no clear resolution to the murder mystery, but lots to wonder about. It’s certainly an interesting character study.

Reading Challenges:


The End of the Ocean by Maja Lunde (The Climate Quartet #2)
(Translated from the Norwegian by Diane Oatley)

Book #2 in Maja Lunde’s Climate Quartet tackles the climate concern of water and the threat of worldwide drought. The story jumps back and forth between two storylines which eventually intersect: 70-year old Signe in 2017 in Norway and David and his young daughter Lou in 2041 in France. Signe is a climate activist who lives on her sailboat (named Blue, hence the Norwegian title Blå). A visit back to her childhood village deep in a Norwegian fjord sets in motion an ocean journey to find the man who used to be the love of her life. David and Lou had to flee from their home in southern France due to drought and fire and are struggling to survive in a refugee camp. Besides it being a book about humans’ connection and reliance on water, it is also about human relationships, in particular father-daughter relationships. I’m always intrigued by unique structures like the one in this book, and the human element added to my enjoyment of it. I really enjoyed the book, but I did prefer the first one, The History of Bees, with its focus on our relationship with bees in the past, present, and future (read more here). I’m looking forward to book #3, Przewalski’s Horse. The Norwegian edition, published September 2019, is already on my shelf.

Reading Challenges:


What have you been reading lately?

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How to Celebrate Norway’s Constitution Day, May 17, during Coronavirus Times

Norway’s May 17 Constitution Day normally brings with it very festive celebrations – large gatherings of people enjoying speeches and songs, a parade, food, and games. However, this is not a usual year.

For Angelenos, though, the Norwegian Church in San Pedro is offering an alternate kind of celebration. It is hosting drive-in celebrations in their parking lot area. Due to the limited size of their parking lot, guests must register in advance for one of three times offered. Each of the celebrations will include speeches, music and song, raffles with prizes, as well as Norwegian food and drink (see program). Guests will also have the opportunity to shop in the store. Click here for more details and registration information. They will be live-streaming the 11:00 a,m. celebration on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sjomannskirkenlosangeles

But how can you celebrate Norway’s national day if you’re not able to attend an alternate celebration? Read on to get some ideas on how you can celebrate at home.


Join a virtual celebration!

“Gratulerer med dagen” with NRK – Join as Norway celebrates 17th of May
(link to NRK site in Norwegian)

From early morning until late in the evening, there will be celebrations on TV, radio, and internet with reports from all over the country. The TV program starts at 7:50 a.m. CET (10:50 p.m. PDT on May 16!) with the hosts broadcasting from the roof of the NRK building in Oslo. Community leaders, popular TV personalities, and renowned artists will join them throughout the day. The celebration wraps up with a performance by singer Sissel Kyrkjebø and the orchestra KORK (Norwegian Radio Orchestra) at 9:10 p.m. CET (12:10 p.m. PDT on May 17) which will of course include Norway’s national anthem, “Ja, vi elsker”.

Norway Day with New York and Washington, DC
May 17, 7:00 a.m. PDT (10:00 a.m. EDT)

Norwegian organizations in New York and Washington, DC, will be celebrating together with a virtual program starting at 10:00 a.m. EDT which includes an opening ceremony followed by a church service in Norwegian. Then at 5:00 p.m. EDT there will be a concert featuring remarks from H.E. Ambassador Kåre R. Aas and a speech of the day as well as musical performances. All events will be streamed at: https://www.facebook.com/sjomannskirkeninewyork/

“17. Mai Allsang!” (Norwegian Constitution Day Sing-Along!) with Minneapolis MN
May 17, 10:30 a.m. PDT (12:30 p.m. CDT)

Join the communities of Mindekirken (The Norwegian Lutheran Memorial Church), Mindekirken Norwegian Language & Culture Program (MNLCP), and Norway House in Minneapolis, Minnesota, at a family song-along on YouTube. They will be singing five, fun 17. mai songs in Norwegian. For some warmup songs, visit Norway House on Facebook.

Hardanger Arts Festival
May 17, 1:00 p.m. PDT

Celebrate the 17th of May with The Norwegian American! On Sunday, May 17, 1:00 p.m. PDT, join Inger-Kristine Riber, Reidun Horvei, and some of the best artists from the Hardanger region in Norway for a special 17. mai online concert. Join on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/events/109478979423001

Virtual Scandinavian Fest: Norway Day, May 15 – 18

This is a new initiative among Scandinavian and Nordic vendors spearheaded by Krista Nygaard, owner of Scandinavian Design Studio in Bend, Oregon, to bring the traditional Scandinavian experience online. The virtual market officially lasts from May 15 – 18 and most vendors will be offering special discounts during this time, but they welcome your support year round at: https://www.scandinavianfest.com/shop


Order take-out or delivery from Scandinavian food establishments.

If you’re local to the Los Angeles area, consider supporting these Scandinavian shops, bakeries, and restaurants with take-out or delivery. The cuisines of Norway, Sweden, and Denmark share some characteristics.


Bake a traditional Norwegian treat!

.  


Browse a Norwegian food blog and pick out a recipe to try.

 

Here are two of my favorite Norwegian food bloggers, both of whom have lovely new cookbooks out as well, and don’t miss the recipe archive from The Norwegian American:


Watch a Norwegian film or try a Norwegian TV series.


Sit down with a Norwegian book, whether it’s one for yourself or one to read with your children.

 

Here are some book lists that might be helpful:


Check out “17. mai” festivities in Norway from 2019.


How will you be celebrating Norway’s Constitution Day this year?

What I’ve Been Reading Lately (April 2020) & Virtual Author Events

As we’ve now passed week #8 of staying at home, I haven’t really found myself reading more than I usually do. What I have been able to do is take advantage of virtual author events, though!

I’ve dropped in on a few virtual author events, but three stand out. The first one was the March LA Times Book Club event with authors Steph Cha (Your House House Will Pay, which I read last month and really enjoyed) and Joe Ide (“IQ” detective series) when they discussed LA noir. Another event was one with a Norwegian author, Jon Fosse, that I learned about after I won his book The Other Name from the publisher through a give-away on Instagram. The event was a discussion with the author and his translator Damion Searls hosted by Community Bookstore in Brooklyn, NY. Finally, I came across an online book talk on Facebook with Icelandic author Kristín Eiríksdóttir (A Fist or a Heart) and her translator Larissa Kyzer hosted by American Scandinavian Foundation in New York City (which will be followed up by an online Nordic Book Club meeting on Tuesday, May 12, for those who may be interested). It’s always interesting to hear from the writers about their writing experiences and processes, whether I’ve read the book or not.

Here are my latest reads and listens. What have you been reading lately?


The Courier by Kjell Ola Dahl
(Translated from the Norwegian by Don Bartlett)

I had previously read a book in this author’s Oslo Detective Series and wasn’t a fan, but the fact that this was a stand-alone historical crime mystery about a female resistance agent that took place in Norway and Sweden during World War II intrigued me. Also, it has won two prestigious Norwegian awards, the Brage Prize (Open Category) and the crime fiction Riverton Prize. I’m glad I took another chance on this author. The story and its characters were engaging and compelling. I liked how it jumped back and forth in time. The story opened and closed in 2015, but otherwise it moved between 1942 in Oslo and Stockholm and 1967 in Oslo with the mysteries of “who killed the mother of a young child in Oslo in 1942?” and “what is the father’s story?” at the core. The book gives a unique glimpse of what life was like for Norwegians, especially Jewish Norwegians, during wartime under German occupation. I enjoyed this book very much!

Reading Challenges:


The Murmur of Bees by Sofia Segovia
(Translated from the Spanish by Simon Bruni)

This book brought me to a new time and place in reading. It’s about an established landowning family in a small northern Mexican town in the early 1900s during the Mexican Revolution and interestingly, considering what’s going on now for us, during the influenza pandemic of 1918. It’s historical fiction with a touch of magical realism. An abandoned child covered in bees is discovered and then adopted by the family. This child, who is deformed and cannot speak and always accompanied by a swarm of bees, turns out to be a blessing for the family as they endure life in their little town with its human and natural challenges. It was a little slow to get going, but suddenly I was very absorbed in the story. I read it, but I heard the audiobook experience is fabulous.

Reading Challenges:


The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

I had actually borrowed this book for my older teenage son to read but he wasn’t interested, so I ended up reading it instead. I had read it years ago back when I was in high school, but I had no recollection of the details in the story. What a delightful surprise – a very engaging, quick read! It’s about gang life in Oklahoma in the 1960s. In particular, it’s about a 14-year-old greaser named Ponyboy, who is raised by his older brothers because their parents died some time ago, and his friend Johnny, who lives in an abusive household. The greasers are their own family and look out for each other when trouble happens during a conflict with the rival gang. I have now put it on hold again at the library and will encourage both my boys to read it and I look forward to hearing their thoughts on it.

Reading Challenges:


The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel
(Audiobook narrated by Dylan Moore)

I’m so glad I picked this book up when I did because I recently learned that Emily St. John Mandel is the next guest to join the (now virtual) LA Times Book Club on May 19. I really enjoyed Station Eleven and was intrigued by the author’s newest book about the collapse of a Ponzi scheme. It didn’t disappoint. Similar to Station Eleven, it jumped back and forth in time and told the story from different characters’ perspectives and the reader slowly became aware of what was going on. It took some time for the different storylines’ connections to become evident, but once that started happening, it was a compelling read, or in my case, listen.

Reading Challenges:


What have you been reading lately?

Disclaimer: AVikingInLA is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

Films and TV Series to Stream Now: Denmark

Welcome to my third and final post of Scandinavian films and TV series to stream now while you’re staying safer at home. Here I feature films and TV shows from Denmark. Previously, I shared films and TV series from Norway and Sweden.

Denmark has won three Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film over the years – Babette’s Feast (1987), Pelle the Conqueror (1989), and In a Better World (2011) – all of which can be streamed now. See below for details.

As I mentioned in my previous posts, for streaming options, you have, of course, the usual suspects – Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and more – but don’t forget that you may have free streaming options available from your public library through hoopla and kanopy as well. These two services offer plenty of free foreign and domestic films and TV shows at no charge.

** Movies/TV series with double asterisks are ones I’ve enjoyed and recommend, assuming you’re in the mood for that genre.


Films from Denmark

A Fortunate Man (Lykke-Per)

A Hijacking

A Royal Affair

  • Director: Nikolaj Arcel (2012)
  • Genre: Historical, Based on True Story
  • Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, 2012
  • Where to Watch: hoopla, Amazon Prime Video (included with Magnolia Selects)

A Second Chance

A War

  • Director: Tobias Lindholm (2015)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, 2015
  • Where to Watch: hoopla, Amazon Prime Video (included with Magnolia Selects)

Across the Waters

Adam’s Apples

Applause

  • Director: Martin Zandvliet (2009)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Where to Watch: hoopla, kanopy

April 9th

  • Director: Roni Ezra (2015)
  • Genre: Drama, Historical
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video (included with Prime)

Armadillo

 

 

Babette’s Feast

 

** Cold Case Hammarskjöld

Flickering Lights

In a Better World

  • Director: Susanne Bier (2011)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Academy Award Winner for Best Foreign Language Film, 2011
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

Land of Mine

  • Director: Martin Zandvliet (2016)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, 2016
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

Pelle the Conqueror

  • Director: Bille August (1987)
  • Genre: Drama, Historical
  • Academy Award Winner for Best Foreign Language Film, 1989
  • Where to Watch: hoopla, kanopy, Amazon Prime Video

Pusher

Pusher II: With Blood on My Hands

Pusher III: I’m the Angel of Death

  • Director: Nicolas Winding Refn (2006)
  • Genre: Drama, Suspense
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

Queen of Hearts

Smilla’s Sense of Snow

Summer of ’92

  • Director: Kaspar Barfoed (1987)
  • Genre: Historical, Sports
  • Where to Watch: Netflix

Teddy Bear

The Commune

** The Guilty

The Hunt

  • Director: Thomas Vinterberg (2012)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, 2013
  • Where to Watch: hoopla, Amazon Prime Video (included with Magnolia Selects)

You Disappear

 

 

 


TV Series

1864

  • Genre: Drama, Historical
  • Director: Ole Bornedal (2014)
  • 8 episodes about 60 minutes each
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

Borgen – Seasons 1, 2, & 3

  • Genre: Drama (2010, 2011, 2013)
  • Each season 10 episodes about 60 minutes each
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

Lulu: The Bankrobber’s Wife

  • Genre: Mystery, Drama
  • Director: Jannik Johansen (2009)
  • 12 episodes about 45 minutes each
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

Straight Forward

  • Genre: Suspense, Thriller
  • Directors: Riccardo Pellizzeri, Charlie Haskell, Peter Burger (2019)
  • 8 episodes about 45 minutes each
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

The Eagle – Seasons 1, 2, & 3

  • Genre: Crime, Drama (2004, 2005, 2006)
  • Starring: Jens Albinus
  • Each season 8 episodes about 60 minutes each
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

The Legacy

  • Genre: Mystery, Drama
  • Director: Permilla August (2014)
  • 10 episodes about 60 minutes each
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

The Rain –  Seasons 1 & 2

  • Genre: Sci-Fi, Post-Apocalyptic
  • 8 and 6 episodes about 45 minutes each
  • Where to Watch: Netflix

Unit One – Seasons 1, 2, & 3

  • Genre: Crime, Drama (2000, 2001, 2002)
  • Seasons 1 & 2: 12 episodes about 60 minutes each
  • Season 3: 8 episodes about 60 minutes each
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

 

 


Which films and TV shows have you seen and recommend? Do you have others to add to the list? Share in the comments or email me. I’d love to hear.

Films and TV Series to Stream Now: Sweden

Welcome to my latest post of Scandinavian films and TV series to stream now while you’re staying safer at home. Here I feature films and TV shows from Sweden. Previously, I shared Films & TV Series to Stream Now: Norway. Stay tuned for Denmark.

Over the years, Sweden has won three Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film – The Virgin Spring (1960), Through the Glass Darkly (1961), and Fanny & Alexander (1983) – all of them directed by Ingmar Bergman and which can all be streamed now. See below for details.

In the case of Sweden, I found it interesting that I had not seen many of the movies and TV shows listed, but I had read many of the books upon which they were based. I enjoyed the books (I even consider them among my favorite Scandinavian reads) but I am often hesitant to see movies that are based on books I’ve read and enjoyed. But maybe that will change during this coronavirus self-quarantine time.

As I mentioned in my previous post, for streaming options, you have, of course, the usual suspects – Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and more – but don’t forget that you may have free streaming options available from your public library through hoopla and kanopy as well. These two services offer plenty of free foreign and domestic films and TV shows at no charge.

* Movies/TV series with one asterisk are ones I’ve watched but don’t necessarily recommend unless you’re up for something a bit out of the ordinary.

** Movies/TV series with double asterisks are ones I’ve enjoyed and recommend, assuming you’re in the mood for that genre.


Films from Sweden

A Man Called Ove

  • Director: Hannes Holm (2016)
  • Based on book by Fredrik Backman, A Man Called Ove
  • Genre: Drama, Comedy
  • Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, 2016
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video (Sundance Now)

As It Is in Heaven

  • Director: Kay Pollak (2004)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Starring: Michael Nyqvist
  • Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, 2004
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

Becoming Astrid

  • Director: Pernille Fischer Christensen (2018)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video (included with Prime)

* Border

Britt-Marie Was Here

Fanny & Alexander

  • Director: Ingmar Bergman (1982)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Academy Award Winner for Best Foreign Language Film, 1983
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

Force Majeure

** The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium Trilogy #1)

** The Girl Who Played with Fire (Millennium Trilogy #2)

** The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (Millennium Trilogy #3)

Sami Blood

  • Director: Amanda Kernell (2017)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

Simon and the Oaks

The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared

The 101-Year-Old Man Who Skipped Out on the Bill and Disappeared

  • Director: Felix Herngren & Måns Herngren (2016)
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Where to Watch: Netflix

* The Square

  • Director: Ruben Ostlund (2018)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, 2018
  • Where to Watch: hoopla, Amazon Prime Video

 

 

The Virgin Spring

  • Director: Ingmar Bergman (1960)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Academy Award Winner for Best Foreign Language Film, 1960
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

 

 

Through a Glass Darkly

  • Director: Ingmar Bergman (1961)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Academy Award Winner for Best Foreign Language Film, 1962
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

 

 


TV Series

Quicksand

Wallander: The Original Episodes

Wallander: Season 2

Wallander: Season 3

 


Which films and TV shows have you seen and recommend? Do you have others to add to the list? Share in the comments or email me. I’d love to hear.

Films and TV Series to Stream Now: Norway

Are you looking for fresh ideas of what to watch while you’re staying safer at home? In this post, I’m featuring films and TV series from Norway. Sweden and Denmark will follow shortly.

For streaming options, you have, of course, the usual suspects – Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, etc. – but don’t forget, you may have free streaming options available from your public library through hoopla and kanopy as well. These two services offer plenty of free foreign and domestic films and TV shows at no charge.

And finally, for Norwegian film and TV enthusiasts, another streaming option is Films of Norway, a subscription service that offers only Norwegian movies, TV series, documentaries, children’s programs, and more. The programs are in original Norwegian language. English subtitles are available. Trial memberships are available. Many programs not available elsewhere can be found at Films of Norway. I’ve included the programming that intrigued me the most in the lists below.

* Movies/TV series with asterisks are ones I’ve watched and enjoyed.


Films from Norway

* 1001 Grams (1001 gram)

22 July

Beatles

  • Director: Peter Flinth (2014)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Based on book by Lars Saabye Christensen, Beatles
  • Where to Watch: Films of Norway

Elling

  • Director: Petter Næss (2002)
  • Based on book by Ingvar Ambjørnsen, Elling
  • Genre: Drama
  • Academy Award Nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, 2001
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

Headhunters

I Am Yours (Jeg er din)

  • Director: Iram Haq (2013)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Where to Watch: kanopy

In Order of Disappearance (Kraftidioten)

  • Director: Hans Petter Moland (2014)
  • Genre: Action
  • Starring: Stellan Skarsgård
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

* King of Devil’s Island (Kongen av Bastøy)

  • Director: Marius Holst (2010)
  • Genre: Drama
  • Starring: Stellan Skarsgård, Kristoffer Joner
  • Where to Watch: hoopla, Amazon Prime Video (included with Prime)

Kon-Tiki (1950)

  • Director: Thor Heyerdahl
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Academy Award Winner for Best Documentary (Feature), 1952
  • Where to Watch: kanopy, Amazon Prime Video (included with Prime)

* Kon-Tiki (2012)

Kristin Lavransdatter

Max Manus: Man of War

Pioneer

  • Director: Erik Skjoldbjærg (2015)
  • Genre: Historical, Suspense
  • Where to Watch: hoopla

Sonja: The White Swan

  • Director: Anne Sewitsky (2018)
  • Genre: Drama, Biographical
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video (included with Prime)

The Almost Man (Mer eller minder mann)

  • Director: Martin Lund (2012)
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Where to Watch: kanopy

* The King’s Choice (Kongens nei)

The Last King

The Quake (Skjelvet)

  • Director: John Andreas Andersen (2018)
  • Genre: Action
  • Starring: Kristoffer Joner, Ane Dahl Torp
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

The Snowman

* The Wave (Bølgen)

Thelma

Valley of Shadows

  • Director: Jonas Matzow Gulbrandsen (2018)
  • Genre: Drama, Suspense
  • Where to Watch: hoopla, Amazon Prime Video (included with Prime)

* What Will People Say (Hva vil folk si)

 


TV Series

* Borderliner

  • Drama, Crime (2017)
  • 1 season of 8 episodes
  • Where to Watch: Netflix

* Home for Christmas

  • Comedy (2019)
  • 1 season of 6 episodes
  • Where to Watch: Netflix

Home Ground

  • Drama, Sports (2020)
  • 2 seasons
  • Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video (PBS Masterpiece)
  • Starring: Ane Dahl Torp

* Lilyhammer

  • Drama, Comedy, Crime (2014)
  • 3 seasons
  • Where to Watch: Netflix
  • Starring: Steven Van Zandt

Nobel

Norsemen

  • Comedy (2018)
  • 2 seasons
  • Where to Watch: Netflix

Occupied

Ragnarok

  • Drama (2020)
  • 1 season of 6 episodes
  • Where to Watch: Netflix

The Cheese Journey (Ostereisen)

  • Documentary (2018)
  • Food blogger and cookbook author Nevada Berg takes viewers on a journey through Norway to learn about cheese varieties.
  • 1 season of 3 episodes (about 10 minutes each)
  • Where to Watch: Films of Norway

* The Heavy Water War

The Oslo Killing

The River

The Valhalla Murders

  • Drama (2020)
  • 1 season of 7 episodes
  • Where to Watch: Netflix

Varg Veum

Wisting

 


* Movies/TV series with asterisks are ones I’ve watched and enjoyed.

Which shows are ones you’ve seen and recommend? Do you have others to add to the list? Share in the comments or email me. I’d love to hear.

Reading Lately (March 2020) & #ScandiReadingChallenge Update

With a prolonged self-quarantine headed my way, I thought I would have lots of extra time to read. It hasn’t quite worked out that way yet. Maybe once we settle into this new normal, I’ll find more time to just read. In the meantime, here are my latest reads and listens. What have you been reading lately?


The Mother-in-Law by Sally Hepworth
(Audiobook narrated by Barrie Kreinik)

This was a wonderfully entertaining audiobook that I always returned to eagerly. It’s a murder mystery in which the mother-in-law is found dead under suspicious circumstances and no one in the family is safe from scrutiny. It’s told from the perspectives of the daughter-in-law and the mother-in-law, and it jumps back and forth in time so you get insights into all the family members’ histories and you see different perspectives on the same situations. They are a very complicated family and there are many unrealized misunderstandings. It was an extremely compelling story and had me engaged until the very end. I’ll be listening to/reading more by Sally Hepworth!

Reading Challenges:


Clearing Out by Helene Uri
(Translated from the Norwegian by Barbara Sjoholm, 2019)

This was a unique book, a mix of fiction and autobiography, about families and their stories. The author discovers her grandfather was a Sámi fisherman (indigenous people in the north of Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia) and intertwines that experience with a fictional story of a character who goes to northern Norway to study Sámi language extinction. There are many parallels between the author and the fictional character. Not only are they both linguists, but they both also experience the loss of an older parent. At first it was a little difficult to distinguish between the author’s story and the character’s story, but soon the transitions became seamless and I considered it a clever technique. I was intrigued by the reflections on Sámi identities and their history in Norway. It’s not something I’ve come across often in Norwegian literature. (If interested, take a look at this article by the book’s translator which includes a discussion about the Sámi elements as well as an interview with the author.)

(Thank you to NetGalley and the University of Minnesota Press for providing me a copy of this book!)

Reading Challenges:


In the Midst of Winter: A Novel by Isabel Allende
(Translated from the Spanish by Nick Castor and Amanda Hopkinson)
(Audiobook narrated by Dennis Boutsikaris, Jasmine Cephas Jones, and Alma Cuervo)

All I knew about this book going into it was that it took place in Brooklyn during a big snowstorm. I did not know I’d be getting a whirlwind historical tour of Latin America. Most of the action takes place over just a few days when three people are brought together by a car accident. However, during their days together, we jump back in time to Guatemala in the 1990s, Chile in the 1950s, and Brazil in the 1990s to learn about their pasts. The illegal immigrant’s story of coming from Guatemala to the US through Mexico and across the Rio Grande was the one I enjoyed the most. Having recently read American Dirt, I appreciated the additional perspective on that experience. Overall, it was a fine story and the language was lovely, but it was not as engaging as I would have preferred.

Reading Challenges:


Your House Will Pay by Steph Cha

The racial tensions and violence of the Los Angeles Riots of 1992 form the basis for this novel. A contemporary story set in 2019, it follows two families who have a shared history with that racially tense time. Shawn Matthews, an African American man whose sister was shot and killed in 1991, leads a quiet life far away from his troublesome youth days in South Central LA. At the same time, Grace Park, a Korean American woman who lives a sheltered life home with her parents, can’t understand why her sister won’t talk to their mother. It’s a very engaging and compelling read which provided much material to discuss at our virtual book club meeting. I highly recommend it.

Reading Challenges:


What have you been reading lately?

Disclaimer: AVikingInLA is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

Reading Lately (February 2020) & #ScandiReadingChallenge Update

February was a productive, varied, and very enjoyable month of reading for me. First of all, I finally completed my 2019 Scandinavian Reading Challenge at the beginning of the month. I have compiled all my reads at What I Read for the 2019 #ScandiReadingChallenge. Secondly, I continued strong with my reading intentions for 2020. And considering what’s going on this month, it looks like March will be a good reading month, too.

Here are my latest reads. What have you been reading lately?


North Wild Kitchen: Home Cooking from the Heart of Norway
by Nevada Berg

I was already a fan of the author’s blog North Wild Kitchen so when she published a cookbook I knew I would buy it. The author is from Utah, and in the introduction, she explains how she ended up buying a mountain farm “deep in the belly of Norway” and began exploring the country’s cuisine. I enjoy how the cookbook is organized thematically by source reflecting Norwegian food culture: foraging, fishing, farming (“Seteren”), harvesting, hunting, storing (“Stabburet”), camping, and baking. It includes both traditional Norwegian meals as well as Norwegian-inspired recipes. I was happy to see many favorite foods, such as “boller” (sweet buns with cardamom), “grovbrød” (multigrain bread) and “bløtkake” (layered cream cake with fresh berries), as well as some new-to-me dishes like “plukkfisk” (fish and mashed potatoes with roasted carrots, sauteed leeks, and bacon) which seemed reasonable to attempt at home. The commentary on Norwegian food culture is insightful, the recipes manageable (I appreciate the tips on substitutions for some of the more “exotic” ingredients like moose and grouse), and the photos are delightful. It’s a beautiful addition to any kitchen, but especially to one with a cook with Norwegian roots.

Reading Challenges:


American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins
(Audiobook narrated by Yareli Arizmendi)

This was high on my TBR list after I first heard about it in the fall of 2019, but then on the day of its release with all the surrounding controversy, I became uncertain as to whether I actually wanted to read it. However, before I had a chance to think much more about it, my audiobook hold became available so I decided to give it a try. At least I’d know specifically what the controversy related to. I did really enjoy it. I found it engaging and eye-opening. It’s the story of a mother and her young son on a journey to survive. They have to flee Acapulco after her journalist husband and many family members are killed by the cartel. They make their way north along with other migrants who are from different places and on the journey for various reasons. I was familiar with the general picture of migrants from Central America making their way north and the troubles at the border. I knew of El Bestia, the Mexican freight trains that carry migrants northward, and the dangers involved. However, the book gave me a closer and more personal look at what that journey is like – the good, the bad, and the ugly – and I appreciated that. I always make an effort to read diverse authors and now I have added even more books by Latinx authors to my TBR, books exploring a variety of Latinx experiences.

Reading Challenges:


Dødevaskeren (The Dead Washer) by Sara Omar
(Translated from the Danish to the Norwegian by Hilde Rød-Larsen)

This is an amazing and heartbreaking novel dealing with the oppression of Muslim women, in particular in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. The author was born and raised in Kurdistan, but she had to flee as a young teenager in the late 1990s due to war. She eventually made her way to Denmark. I was very eager to read this book when I first learned about it from the Scandinavian bookstagram community. When it was published in Denmark in 2017, it was hailed as “the year’s most important book.” The author had to have police protection due to the backlash from the anti-Islam content.

The book is about a girl named Frmesk born in Kurdistan in 1986 (just like the author; I wonder how much of the novel is autobiographical). She is unwanted by her father because she’s a girl. She is sent to live with her mother’s parents because the mother is afraid for the baby’s life if she stays at home. Her grandparents are very kind, loving, open-minded “parents” to Frmesk in a world where the Koran rules and women’s rights and freedoms are non-existent. The story moves between Frmesk’s life as a young child in her grandparents’ household and Frmesk’s life in Denmark 30 years later when she’s alone in a hospital bed for unidentified procedures. Real events, such as the 1988 Halabja chemical attack, are included in the story. It was an extremely engrossing and engaging story despite the difficult subject material. I certainly hope it’s translated to English so it can engage many more readers. Sara Omar’s second book, Skyggedanseren (The Shadow Dancer), a follow-up to the first, was published in Denmark in November 2019 and I’m very eager to read it when it’s released in Norwegian in May 2020.

Reading Challenges:


Beyond All Reasonable Doubt by Malin Persson Giolito
(Translated from the Swedish by Rachel Willson-Broyles)

This was my second Malin Persson Giolito book. I really enjoyed Quicksand, her English language debut. There are many similarities between the two books. They are both legal thrillers in which the subject matter is heavy and discussion-worthy, and the narrative structure is one in which the story jumps back and forth in time. Quicksand was about a school shooting; this book explores a possibly wrongful murder conviction (of a man who happens to be hated by society for an unrelated alleged child molestation). This story alternates between contemporary times, when the criminal defense lawyer is looking through the case again, and 1997/1998, when the 15-year-old girl was killed and a 35-year-old man convicted and sentenced to life in prison. I felt the book lacked in certain areas, like character development of Sophia Weber, the lawyer, and advancement of the plot. I learned later that this book is actually the second book in a series featuring this lawyer (the first does not have an English translation) so that could explain the missing background information needed to understand some of the lawyer’s actions. Plot-wise, the lawyer didn’t agree to take the case until practically half way through the book which was frustrating. The book provided thought-provoking material, but unfortunately, I did not feel satisfied at the end.

Reading Challenges:


The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
(Audiobook narrated by Jack Hawkins and Louise Brealey)

I’m confused by this book. I loved it while I was listening and couldn’t wait to return to it. It was extremely engaging and kept me wondering. But then when the pieces started falling into place, I became confused. I thought I had a handle on the timelines – the events leading up to the killing that took place years earlier and the therapist’s current life situation – but then it didn’t make sense to me. When I had finished, I felt like I needed to go back and reread to see where I had missed something. Did I listen too fast? I would have loved to discuss this with someone who had read it at the same time as me. Thinking back about it now I realize I’ve already started forgetting little details so it’s hard to attempt to clear up my confusion.

Reading Challenges:


What have you been reading lately?

Disclaimer: AVikingInLA is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

March 2020: Los Angeles Culture Challenge

3/14/2020 Update:  Rekefest i hagen, or Shrimp Party in the Garden, at the Norwegian Church has been canceled. The Scandinavian Festival is canceled for this year as well and returns next year April 10 & 11, 2021.


For Scandinavians and Scandinavian enthusiasts, this is the month when the Norwegian Church hosts its annual Rekefest i hagen, or Shrimp Party in the Garden. It will take place on Saturday, March 21, at 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. Come enjoy shrimp the Norwegian way! Peel-your-own Arctic shrimp with freshly baked “loff” (white bread), mayonnaise, and dill along with potato salad are served family style along community tables set up outside. Price is $25/adult, $5/child, or $50/family. Register to attend by emailing iwa@sjomannskirken.no.

And while you’re at it, mark your calendars with the dates for this year’s Scandinavian Festival in Thousand Oaks. On the weekend of April 4 & 5, celebrate the festival’s 45th anniversary with live entertainment, children’s activities, food demonstrations, a Kubb tournament, lectures, a Nordic food court, Nordic craft vendors, and more! They are always looking for volunteers. If you’re interested in volunteering, email scanfestvolunteer@gmail.com.

How will you explore the richness of Los Angeles this month?

* SUNDAY, MARCH 1 *

Red Envelope Show, Chinese American Museum, Downtown LA, ongoing until March 29. Exchanging red envelopes is a beloved tradition in many Asian and Asian American communities. The color red symbolizes good luck and prosperity. During Lunar New Year, these envelopes are often handed out to provide good luck. From whimsical to elegant, red envelopes often bear designs that represent auspice and special occasions. Red Envelope Show takes a fresh look at this ephemeral art, which features hundreds of red envelopes decorated with original artwork by over 250 contemporary artists from across the country.

Japan: Sakura – Cherry Blossom Lanterns (Family Art Workshop), Junior Arts Center at Barnsdall Art Park, Hollywood/Los Feliz, Sunday, 3/1, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Join instructors for a free family art workshop in a real art studio. Each Sunday a different culture and media are featured. All materials are provided.

Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival, Bowers Museum, Santa Ana, Sunday, 3/1, 11:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Enjoy a full day of fun for the entire family while celebrating Japanese culture and the arrival of spring! Scheduled events include Kishin Daiko Taiko; Shan, candy sculptor extraordinaire; Fujima Seiyumi Kai Japanese Classical Dance; Ikebana flower arranging demonstration by Ikebana Teachers Association, and L.A. Taiko Drums. Ongoing activities include free mochi treats, face painting, art projects (tissue paper and pastel chalk cherry blossom and Zen tangle art), origami demonstration, and Bonsai exhibit and demonstration.

Andell Family Sundays—Aire, Agua, Mundo, Fuego, LACMA, Miracle Mile, Sunday, 3/1, 12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. (Offered every Sunday in March except 3/29). Make, look, and talk about art at Andell Family Sundays! Drop in anytime between 12:30 and 3:30 pm. This weekly family event features artist-led workshops and friendly gallery tours and activities thematically based on special exhibitions and LACMA’s permanent collection. Create memories together and have fun! This month, be inspired by the remarkable breadth of Venezuelan born Luchita Hurtado’s eight-decade career on display in the exhibit Luchita Hurtado: I Live I Die I Will Be Reborn. Then make your own paintings and drawings inspired by Hurtado’s unique perspective.

* WEEKEND OF MARCH 7 & 8 *

Undiscovered Chinatown Walking Tour, Chinatown, Downtown LA, Saturday, 3/7, 10:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. (Offered every first Saturday of the month). Visit a temple, an herbal shop, art galleries, antique stores, and more! The 2 1/2 hour walking tour will take visitors to a number of off-the-beaten-track points of interest and will guide those interested in shopping to some of Chinatown’s best bargains and its trendiest shops. Be prepared to wind your way through a myriad of alleyways, plaza stalls, and classical courtyards to discover the charm of LA’s Chinatown.

Art and Religion in the City of Angeles: A Walking Tour with Patrick Polk and Amy Landau, Fowler Museum at UCLA, Westwood, Saturday, 3/7, 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Tour important Los Angeles sacred sites along the Vermont Avenue corridor with Patrick A. Polk, Curator of Latin American and Caribbean Popular Arts, and Amy Landau, Director of Education and Interpretation. Vermont Avenue traverses the El Salvador Community Corridor, Historic Filipino Town, Korea Town, Little Armenia, Little Bangladesh, and Thai Town, offering rich opportunities to discover the city’s layered religious and cultural histories. Visit website for more details and registration details. Advance reservations are required and capacity is limited.

Japanese Girls’ Day (Free Second Sunday), USC Pacific Asia Museum, Pasadena, Sunday, 3/8, 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. Celebrate Japanese Girls’ Day, or Hinamatsuri! Come see a traditional tiered doll display (hinadan) and learn to create your own dolls and hanging decorations inspired by the festival. The day will include Japanese tea ceremony demonstrations, Student Educator led tours and storytime for kids. Enjoy free admission all day.

Celebrating Nowruz: Iranian New Year, UCLA, Westwood, Sunday, 3/8, 12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Join Farhang Foundation for the 12th Annual Celebration of Nowruz at UCLA’s Royce Hall and Dickson Courts. The event includes musical performances, children’s activities, dancers, a Haft Sîn display and the annual Persian Costume “Spring Walk.” Open to children and adults of all ages. Please see website for program information.

Andell Family Sundays—Aire, Agua, Mundo, Fuego, LACMA, Miracle Mile, Sunday, 3/8, 12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. (Offered every Sunday in March except 3/29). Make, look, and talk about art at Andell Family Sundays! Drop in anytime between 12:30 and 3:30 pm. This weekly family event features artist-led workshops and friendly gallery tours and activities thematically based on special exhibitions and LACMA’s permanent collection. Create memories together and have fun! This month, be inspired by the remarkable breadth of Venezuelan born Luchita Hurtado’s eight-decade career on display in the exhibit Luchita Hurtado: I Live I Die I Will Be Reborn. Then make your own paintings and drawings inspired by Hurtado’s unique perspective.

Fowler Families: Collaged Connections, Fowler Museum at UCLA, Westwood, Sunday, 3/8, 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Create colorful collages using various patterns and materials inspired by the special exhibition Rina Banerjee: Make Me a Summary of the World. This retrospective includes large-scale sculptures and installations made from materials sourced from around the world as well as a selection of works on paper that create a multi-sensory space for reflecting on the splintered experience of identity, tradition, and culture within diasporic communities. Free and open to all.

All remaining events for the month of March have been canceled.

* WEEKEND OF MARCH 14 & 15 *

Ireland: Celtic Dragons (Family Art Workshop), Junior Arts Center at Barnsdall Art Park, Hollywood/Los Feliz, Sunday, 3/15, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Join instructors for a free family art workshop in a real art studio. Each Sunday a different culture and media are featured. All materials are provided.

Andell Family Sundays—Aire, Agua, Mundo, Fuego, LACMA, Miracle Mile, Sunday, 3/15, 12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. (Offered every Sunday in March except 3/29). Make, look, and talk about art at Andell Family Sundays! Drop in anytime between 12:30 and 3:30 pm. This weekly family event features artist-led workshops and friendly gallery tours and activities thematically based on special exhibitions and LACMA’s permanent collection. Create memories together and have fun! This month, be inspired by the remarkable breadth of Venezuelan born Luchita Hurtado’s eight-decade career on display in the exhibit Luchita Hurtado: I Live I Die I Will Be Reborn. Then make your own paintings and drawings inspired by Hurtado’s unique perspective.

* WEEKEND OF MARCH 21 & 22 *

Shrimp Party in the Garden, Sjømannskirken Los Angeles, San Pedro, Saturday, 3/21, 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. All are welcome to attend Sjømannskirken’s annual Shrimp Party in the Garden. Long community tables will be set up outside and shrimp will be served Norwegian style. Lasagna will be available for those who don’t eat shrimp. Price is $25/adult, $5/child, or $50/family. Register to attend by emailing iwa@sjomannskirken.no.

Persia: Persian Tiles for New Year (Family Art Workshop), Junior Arts Center at Barnsdall Art Park, Hollywood/Los Feliz, Sunday, 3/22, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Join instructors for a free family art workshop in a real art studio. Each Sunday a different culture and media are featured. All materials are provided.

Andell Family Sundays—Aire, Agua, Mundo, Fuego, LACMA, Miracle Mile, Sunday, 3/22, 12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. (Offered every Sunday in March except 3/29). Make, look, and talk about art at Andell Family Sundays! Drop in anytime between 12:30 and 3:30 pm. This weekly family event features artist-led workshops and friendly gallery tours and activities thematically based on special exhibitions and LACMA’s permanent collection. Create memories together and have fun! This month, be inspired by the remarkable breadth of Venezuelan born Luchita Hurtado’s eight-decade career on display in the exhibit Luchita Hurtado: I Live I Die I Will Be Reborn. Then make your own paintings and drawings inspired by Hurtado’s unique perspective.

* WEEKEND OF MARCH 28 & 29 *

Red Envelope Show, Chinese American Museum, Downtown LA, closes March 29. Exchanging red envelopes is a beloved tradition in many Asian and Asian American communities. The color red symbolizes good luck and prosperity. During Lunar New Year, these envelopes are often handed out to provide good luck. From whimsical to elegant, red envelopes often bear designs that represent auspice and special occasions. Red Envelope Show takes a fresh look at this ephemeral art, which features hundreds of red envelopes decorated with original artwork by over 250 contemporary artists from across the country.

International Children’s Festival, Aquarium of the Pacific, Long Beach, Saturday, 3/28, & Sunday, 3/29. The annual International Children’s Festival celebrates the amazing talents of children of many cultures. West African, Mexican, Pacific Islander, Cambodian, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Persian, Irish, Slovak, and Czech dance are among the children’s performances, along with martial arts demonstrations and an international children’s choir. Kids of all ages can partake in a percussion circle, Japanese origami, Native American crafts, and Pacific Islander traditional children’s games.

India: Henna Hand Patterns (Family Art Workshop), Junior Arts Center at Barnsdall Art Park, Hollywood/Los Feliz, Sunday, 3/29, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Join instructors for a free family art workshop in a real art studio. Each Sunday a different culture and media are featured. All materials are provided.

Ukrainian Pysanka Festival, Ukrainian Culture Center, Los Angeles, Sunday, 3/29, 12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Enjoy the talent and tradition of learning how to make beautiful Ukrainian Easter Eggs and enjoy other Ukrainian cultural activities and delicious food. Attendees can sample authentic Ukrainian food, participate in several workshops, watch lively Ukrainian dancing, enjoy other crafts and learn how to make a real Pysanka (traditional Ukrainian Easter egg). Great fun for the entire family!

Feel free to add events for the current month in the comments below. If you have suggestions about future events and celebrations to include in upcoming months, please email the details. Thank you!

What I’ve Been Reading Lately (January 2020) & Reading Challenges Wrap-Up

2019 didn’t quite end as I would have liked in regards to completing the reading challenges I had undertaken. I did complete the Modern Mrs. Darcy Reading Challenge (see what I read here) as well as the Reading Women Challenge (except for one prompt, a play, which won’t be completed, see what I read here). Sadly, it was my Scandinavian Reading Challenge that lingered unfinished! I bit off too much last year, but I am in the process of completing it now as I also embark on my 2020 reading intentions. (I intend to finish my Scandinavian Reading Challenge this month and look forward to sharing my complete list of Scandinavian reads soon!)

In the meantime, here are my latest reads. What have you been reading lately?


One Day in December by Josie Silver

The main character Laurie experiences love at first sight through the bus window and spends the next year trying to track down the guy only to find him again as the new boyfriend of her best friend. I enjoyed the beginning and loved how it all eventually ended about ten years later, but I felt it was too long and winding in between. Maybe it was because it took me too long to read the book. When I found myself with longer chunks of time to read, I definitely enjoyed it more.

 

Reading Challenges:


A Modern Family by Helga Flatland

(Translated from the Norwegian by Rosie Hedger)

This was a complex character study of how adult children deal with the late-in-life divorce of their parents. The story begins with the whole family – grandparents, parents, and kids – on a trip from Oslo to Rome to celebrate the grandfather’s 70th birthday. What happens instead on the night of the celebratory dinner is that news of the grandparents’ impending divorce comes out. The three adult siblings – one married with kids, another struggling with fertility issues with her boyfriend, and the third a free-thinker when it comes to love and marriage – struggle very differently in coming to terms with this new reality when they’re back in Oslo. The story alternates between the perspectives of the three siblings with some overlap of events. It’s a deep and thought-provoking look at family relationships, perceived responsibilities, family history, and parenting.

Reading Challenges:


The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow

(Audiobook narrated by January LaVoy)

This came highly recommend by a colleague at work and it was on Modern Mrs. Darcy’s list of favorite audiobooks of 2019 as well as her book club pick for February. It didn’t disappoint; it was a wonderful journey. It’s an historical fantasy book combining many interesting elements: a coming-of-age story, a book within a book, adventure, love, and friendship. It’s creatively done and the language is beautiful. It was a nice change of pace from books I generally read.

Reading Challenges:


What have you been reading lately?

Disclaimer: AVikingInLA is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.