A Blog of Seattle Arts & Lectures

What SAL’s Reading: Fall Edition


Ruth Dickey, Executive Director:
“I am currently reading Walk Through Walls by Marina Abramović, which has stunned and moved me, and Bright Dead Things by Ada Limón. I was so captivated by Ada’s reading that I tried to purchase the book that evening, but Open Books had run out (and then I struck out at both Phinney Books and Elliott Bay Books). Luckily, University Book Store had a copy when I popped in, and I’m eager to revisit her beautiful poems on the page.”


Amanda with baby Aria Marie!

Amanda Carrubba, Finance & Operations Director:
The Cat in the Hat!  🙂 And all Dr. Seuss.”


Alicia Craven, WITS Program Director:
Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Andrea Duckworth.

Aaron Counts’ new book of poems: Strange-Tongued Names.  

They May Not Mean to But They Do: A Novel by Cathleen Schine (dark hilarity about aging, family, loneliness, and love.

The Man Who Stole Himself: The Slave Odyssey of Hans Jonathan by Gisli Palsson (nonfiction about the life of a man born into slavery in St. Croix in 1784, who was enslaved by the Danish and fought in their navy, but later fled to freedom in Iceland).”


Amelia Peacock, Community Engagement Coordinator:
“I’m currently reading The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides. I read Middlesex when I was probably a little too young to understand it fully, but still inhaled his words. Like Middlesex, The Marriage Plot works on many different levels with meaning piled into every sentence. At its surface is a love story set in the early 1980s.

The players: Madeleine, a spunky English major in love with Austen and Victorian-era literature, Leonard Bankhead a brilliant boy fraught with personal demons, and Mitchell Grammaticus, an old “friend” devoted to theology and to Madeleine herself. The book follows the lives of these characters as they intersect and break apart in the year following graduation. Just below the surface, it is a coming-of-age story in a decade alive with social, political, and cultural change. Deeper still, it is an allegory of the classic, capital-N Novel, a reconciliation of the old and the new.”

theunwindingAlison Stagner, Events Coordinator & Sonder Blog Editor:
“Jumping on the should’ve-read-this-years-ago wagon, I just finished both the first book in Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan Quartet, and Louise Erdrich’s The Plague of Doves, which should’ve won the Pulitzer Prize. Up next, in the nonfiction-horror genre: The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America by George Packer.”


Rebecca Hoogs, Associate Director:
“I just finished MOTHERs and The Pedestrians by Rachel Zucker. I’m also halfway through Here I Am by Jonathan Safran Foer.”

51ymh-syvl-_sy344_bo1204203200_Laura Hutchinson, WITS Volunteer:
“I am, I kid you not, taking a break from the election by reading Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS by Joby Warrick. Bedtime reading is Before the Fall, a mystery by Noah Hawley that features a blow-hard, psycho head-anchor, so that one is providing no succor. ”


Christina Gould, Patron Services Manager:
Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher by Timothy Egan. Egan’s appearance on SAL’s stage propelled me to finally read this biography of Edward Curtis. Reading the story of Curtis’s passion of capturing Native American nations on film is captivating. An added bonus, of course, is Egan’s deft hand at story-telling and the fact that Curtis’s cultural legacy lives strongly in Seattle.

And, for my guilty pleasure, A Great Reckoning by Louise Penny. The 12th Chief Inspector Gamache once again successfully launches me into the Three Pine Village of Quebec with its quirky and lovable characters. There’s an element of Nancy Drew here; beyond that, the series is deep, elegant and grand. Penny is a beautiful writer that always gifts the reader with sentences that make me pause, like this one: Don’t believe everything you think.”

Posted in Sonder