Simple Gifts: Lesson in Living from a Shaker Village
In this memoir, June Sprigg recalls the summer of 1972, when she was nineteen, working as a tour guide in one of the last Shaker villages, populated by a mere handful of old women. The young June forged a profound connection with these (mostly) wise, humorous and kind women, a connection that shaped the rest of her life (she went on to write several books about the Shakers, and worked in Shaker museums). She even contemplated staying on as a permanent member of the community, but decided that way was not for her.
It's not exactly a gripping narrative, but this quiet, contemplative book was not a bad way to finish off my reading year.