The Small Rain

by Madeleine L’Engle

It seems fitting, with her death still so very recent, that my next book for the 11 Decades challenge is Madeleine L’Engle’s first published novel.

It takes place in a slightly romanticized New York, and traces the story of Katherine, a brilliant pianist, and Sarah, and aspiring actress, friends of a sort, though the latter is painted rather unsympathetically.

L’Engle delves in to all sorts of subjects: sex, religion, love, growing up, and the artistic personality – as she shares with us Katherine’s journey from teen to young adult.

The story does not end with all romances happily tied up, but it does continue in the sequel, A Severed Wasp, which holds resolutions that are satisfying, if not perfectly tidy.

Ticket to Ride

Fuzzy and I were turned on to the Days of Wonder games by some friends, who mentioned a “train game” while we were playing something completely different. I love trains, so when we saw the game – Ticket to Ride – in our local comic book store, we took home a copy.

The object of the game is to claim railroad routes across the country, making the longest route, or stopping in the most cities (not necessarily the same thing) or scoring the most point for completing the most point-to-point connections. There’s a 1916 expansion pack that adds some cards and routes, and then there’s a special Marklin version that adds human characters. As well, there’s a version using a European map instead of the US map.

Geography purists should be cautioned: the maps are not accurate, and are intended as representations and modified for ease of play.

Still, the game is fun.
And I’m not just saying that because I usually win.

(For 2-5 players)