I've never read anything by Annie Dillard, but when my stepmom mentioned The Living early on in our cruise, I thought both Rod and I might both enjoy this debut novel. It's set in the Pacific Northwest, just 20 miles south of Canada (specifically, the Bellingham, Washington region). June was fairly certain that I could find a used copy at Serendipty (in Friday Harbor) and she was right. I haven't had a chance to read the book, but my husband picked it up as soon as we got home and thoroughly enjoyed it. He said not a lot happens, but that it's excellent and quite beautifully written.
Next stop was Griffin Bay Bookstore (also in Friday Harbor). I'd been perusing June's large collection of regional cookbooks while lounging on the boat and remembered a delicious salmon pasta dish she'd made for us a few years ago. The recipe was from her copy of the San Juan Classics Cookbook. Well, of course I had to find a copy for my collection! And what better than a cookbook for a souvenir of our vacation. (And yes, I've already tried a few recipes. Go here and here.)
Griffin Bay Bookstore has such a lovely selection of cookbooks and I was so tempted to buy more than just one. Next time!
Heading down the hill, we stopped in at the Harbor Bookstore where I found a fabulous canvas book-bag with the store logo on the outside pocket. Perfect for lugging all my new books home on the plane!
I also picked up a copy of Putumayo Presents: Music from the Wine Lands for our hosts. This is a marvelous cd, as is the Paris album (which June bought earlier that day at Griffin Bay Bookstore). We listened to both albums every night for the remainder of the trip!
June had another recommendation, which I easily found at Tanner's Books in Sidney, British Columbia. The Curve of Time is a biography of a widow who cruised the coastal waters of British Columbia with her five children aboard a 25 foot boat in 1927. Sounds a bit crowded, wouldn't you say? Apparently this is quite the classic amongst Canadians and boaters. I'm quite anxious to get to it!
I found this lovely little book in the regional section of Tanner's. After scanning the back cover (and admiring the gorgeous cover art), I knew I had to own it! Here are a few lines from the back cover: "In her first bestselling book, Anny Scoones introduced Glamorgan Farm, one of the original homesteads on Vancouver Island. Now in Home and Away: More Tales of a Heritage Farm, Anny presents new stories about the joys and sorrows, excitements and mishaps, of life on a working farm. She also shares stories of travels to other parts of the world. Her travel tales offer keen observations of her experiences away, and also her perspective from afar on the importance of having a place to return to that truly is home." Doesn't this sound lovely?! I think this is a must for my flight to Oregon next month. Yes, we're going on another vacation! But I digress...
I know, I know. I could've bought this at home (with my employee discount!), but I love the Canadian cover AND Sara Gruen is Canadian (born in Vancouver, lived in London, Ontario, went to university in Ottowa), and I was in Canada. So once again, I felt compelled to add this to my stack of souvenirs.
For as long as I've known him, my husband has loved boats. He's read dozens and dozens of books (fiction and nonfiction) about sailing, motor crafts, lost-at-sea-adventures, how-to manuals. You name, he's read it. He's the only person I know who reads the Chapman Piloting, Seamanship and Small Boat Handling tome once a year. And we don't even own a boat! Yet.
We added a copy of Joshua Slocum's famous narrative to our stack at Tanner's. Surprisingly, it wasn't one Rod had already read. Not sure if it'll hold my interest, but you never know. Someone, somewhere just might host a nautical reading challenge!
Last but not least, I bought two copies of...
Don't you just love that cover?! Much more colorful than the U.S. version!
I guess I'm really not a true fan, as I decided to sleep rather than walk up to Tanner's for their midnight festivities. I did manage to get some fun goodies the next morning, though.
And that's it! Now to find more time to read.