Thursday, July 29

Thursday Thirteen #71: Two Books I've Read

Thursday Thirteen

Yesterday I finished the second of two books I'd read since I last blogged and thought I'd do my Thursday Thirteen about them.

Beyond Blue: Surviving Depression & Anixiety and Making the Most of Bad Genes

1. This is a non-fiction book written by Therese J. Borchard.

2. It's partly a memoir, which I found especially helpful. Ms. Borchard suffers from depression, anxiety and a mood disorder--just like me. I really connected with this book because of similar experiences.

3. It's also a self-help guide, educating the reader better about what these illnesses are, how to treat them, and how to live with them.

4. The book gave me a lot of hope. I do feel better and so I'm glad I've got a "cocktail" that works. At the same time, there's a lot of helpful information so that I can stay on top of my own illnesses and work to remain stable!

Those Who Save Us

5. This is a work of fiction, written by Jenna Blum. I believe it's the first book she's published.

6. I had trouble sticking with the book because I found the two main characters, Anna and Trudy, both so unlikeable.

7. The book is set in two different places and times: Weimar, Germany during the Nazi regime of World War II and mid-1990s Minnesota.

8. Anna, the elder character, was a single mother. Only she and a friend knew the identity of her baby, Trudy's, father. In order to protect her child and to survive, Anna finds herself forced to do things she never wanted to do.

9. She never talked about her past, remaining coldly silent all Trudy's growing and maturing years. Even as adults, she and Trudy don't communicate.

10. Trudy's a professor and her "special class" is a seminar on German women during Nazi Germany. She has an undue fascination with the period and the topic, probably because she knows so little about her mother's relationship with an SS officer in a picture kept hidden for decades.

11. Trudy is cold and undemonstrative toward her mother too, choosing to put her in a nursing home after the death of her stepfather Jack.

12. After a crisis at the nursing home, Anna has to move in with Trudy. Anna learns about Trudy's seminar and about a special project she's doing, interviewing German (non Jewish) citizens about their memories of World War II.

13. Trudy eventually will learn her mother's secrets but ... there was no satisfactory conclusion. Not for me, anyway.

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