I am too busy! Despite all my attempts to limit activities, it seems like my days get longer and longer. Of course I do stupid things like deciding to take 1 credit college course on a fantastic literacy program - Picturing Writing. I spent 15 hours in class from Friday night to Saturday night, and I now have some art work to finish, a short story to write,some books to read, and a 3-5 page paper to write. And of course, still find time to teach and plan lessons and grade papers. I had a district committee meeting Monday (the professional development committee of which I am co-chair), an hour long staff meeting today, open house tomorrow night from 6-7:30, sub plans to write for Thursday so I can do "all-staff professional development audits", and a teacher's association executive board meeting on Thursday. Guess who has trouble saying No!
In the midst of all of this, I just finished reading one of the best books I've read all year. Here is my review:
Snow Flower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I think this is the best book I've read this year! I couldn't put it down. Lisa See masterfully shares the story of Lily and Snow Flower, two "same olds" or laotongs who are contracted into a lifetime relationship when they are both seven. It's hard to understand this relationship in our context; you could say it's the ultimate in BFF relationships, but that belittles the reality of the relationship. Lily ultimately mourns the death of Snow Flower more than the death of her husband. The story is set in Hunan China in the 1800's and traces the life stories of both girls from Lily's perspective as a very elderly woman. The Confucian culture is portrayed in great detail as are many practices we consider barbaric --- footbinding in particular. Although these traditions repel us, Lisa See manages to put them in the context of the time. I've also read the author's book Shanghai Girls which also painted a detailed picture of a time and culture in a sympathetic, yet realistic way.
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