I thought I’d make a pandemic reading list to share with my readers. Truly, this time of social isolation is the perfect time to pick up a book. Two years ago I made a commitment to read every night before bed. It’s the perfect way to decompress every night and I love reading. Here’s the list:

  1. The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaci was originally written during the 14th century during the Black Death., This collection of short stories is sure to both entertain and amuse you. Much like today, the characters in his novel were forced to self isolate in a castle outside of Florence to avoid contracting the plague. Despite the ominous backdrop of plague, the tone of this book is quite buoyant.  See social distancing is not a new idea! This also happens to be one of my all time favorite reads.
  2. Resurrection, by Leo Tolstoy. There’s no Black Death in this book, but plenty of the characters are dealing with consumption. It’s a beautiful and heartbreaking tale of redemption. Tolstoy’s ability to develop characters and his stories is second to none and on full display here.
  3. Narcissus and Goldmund, by Herman Hesse. This story follows two friends that take wildly different paths after finishing monastic school. While Narcissus remains in the Monastery as a teacher, while Goldmund explores life outside it’s walls. Consequently, Goldmund experiences the ugliest society has to offer as the Black Death tears through the region. He often finds himself lonely during this travels. Ultimately, he ends up returning to the monastery and his best friend.
  4. The Divine Comedy, by Dante Aligheri because clearly we’re stuck in purgatory. Of course Dante’s classic works touches on more than just purgatory, but since we’re living it you can appreciate that piece of the work. Moreover, purgatory is the place between heaven and hell, which means it could get worse, but it can also get better.
  5. 1984, by George Orwell. I’m not sure this one needs much introduction, but it’s storyline and themes might feel too close to home.
  6. Pride and Prejudice,  by Jane Austen because we can’t just read serious stuff throughout this pandemic. Who doesn’t love a great love story? I love Austen’s characters and the way they develop throughout the book. I’d highly recommend anything that she has written.

To open your pandemic reading, I would start off with The Decameron.  Just be aware that this 14th century novel can be a bit saucy in parts.   Tonight I’m hoping to finish up Vanity Fair before starting Virginia Woolf’s To The Lighthouse tomorrow.  

Here’s a list of our day’s activities:

*Reading Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackery

*Watched The Office season 9

*Ran 2.5 glorious miles.  The weather was amazing, my stomach was not.  Nevertheless, my time was much better than Tuesday’s run.

*Run virtual school for my two teenage boys

*Took Gentle Yoga for a Strong Back on Zoom with Jenn from Open Heart Yoga Studio

*Took Anakin, Maya and Athena on a walk to see Goalielocks fishing 

*Worked on Obedience Training with  Anakin 

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2 Comments

  1. I love this pandemic reading list. I love Tolstoy and Jane Austen. You are so right about Tolstoy, he is the master. Orwell’s 1984 was a surreal read, quite apt for these times. I am reading a lot of Murakami these days and binge watching The Office haha! I am currently on season 7 so guess 9 isn’t far! Thanks for sharing this lovely post.

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