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Lavinia - Ursula K. Le Guin Ah, this is a lovely jewel of a book. I love the character of Lavinia, and of her poet, and the texture of her life. UKL is a magician of the highest order, conjuring up this story that is so real and grounded. It feels so true and good and substantive. Despite being the tale of a narrator who knows she's a fictional character.

I love the worship of the lares and penates, the daily rites. I feel the urge to do something of the sort in my own home, though it's hard to know what would feel right. Somehow aping rites of cultural ancestors from centuries past would feel false and contrived. Yet there is such power about the place, power that needs to be acknowledged and internalized.

The story itself is so beautiful and sad, and the ending perfect. When owls call softly in my woods at night, I'll remember Lavinia and feel her presence, I hope. Le Guin may be my favorite writer ever, I think. She may even displace dear Fyodor Mikaelovich from my heart's core.