Friday, February 26, 2010

Three Cups of Tea and a word about reading aloud

By Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Reling

New York, Penguin Books, 2006

Week 8 Read Aloud

A few words about Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson. I read the book for the first time in 2008 and then read it again aloud with my husband. We heard Greg Mortenson speak in October of 2009 and read the book in anticipation of his speech. It took us much longer than we had anticipated, and we just finished it this week.

We enjoyed hearing him speak so much. The school gym at Gull Lake High School in Richland MI was packed…probably a couple of thousand people. That was as impressive as the speech itself. People are so hungry for inspiration; it was very clear to us that we were in the presence of humble greatness. He is not a powerful speaker but has a very powerful message.

Most of my readers will already have read this book and formed their own opinion about it and about Greg Mortenson, so I only want to make a comment about reading aloud. My husband and I began reading aloud to each other the year we were married (2000). I was reading a very funny book of essays, Ex Libris by Anne Fadiman, and he wanted to know what I was laughing about. I started reading the book to him, and it went from there. We have read books in nearly every genre, but we seem to do best with philosophical works or political works. We really enjoyed The Professor and the Madman by Simon Winchester and The World is Flat by Thomas Friedman, so you can see where we go with books. He reads one day and then I read the next. Because Thell hasn’t read much fiction in his life and because breakfast time (when we generally read) is often interrupted by breakfast meetings, grandchildren, and business calls, we seem to do better with books we can pick up easily. We began reading Super Freakonomics by Levitt and Dubner this week. Look for a review of it later.

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