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Book a Week 2017 - BW12: March Equinox

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#1 aggieamy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 10:19 AM

Hello!  Welcome! I am a temporary stand in for Robin while she enjoys some time with family.  (So don't ask any hard questions until she's back on duty!)

 

I'm glad you could all join in for another week of reading. 

 

****

 

Spring makes its own statement, so loud and clear that the gardener

seems to be only one of the instruments, not the composer. ~Geoffrey B. Charlesworth

 

 

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower. ~ Albert Camus

 

 

Spring is in the air in the Northern Hemisphere and Autumn in the Southern side of the world. Nature's paint palette,  combines rich, deep and bold colors with brilliant hues to entertain the eye.  Just imagine the synergism as we blend the seasons to enrich our reading as well as our bookshelves.  

Dive into your trusty thesaurus to look for words that speak to you of either autumn and spring.  Mix them together to discover a new read or revisit an old friend.  

A random pick of cozy earth on Amazon brings up P. Bodi's Mountain Earth's Kitchen Cozy Mystery Series.   Hope orange resulted in Irene Hannon's   Hope Harbor series as well as RaeAnne Thayne's Hope Crossing series.  Blue leaf resulted in Lynn Truss's fabulous and fun book -  Eats, Shoots and Leaves: A Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation.  If you haven't read it yet, now is the time.  

 

Add another layer to include our theme of the month with mystery or nordic authors and see what comes up.  Cozy mysteries are always fun to curl up with when you need something light. Spring brings to mind Debbie Macomber and her Blossom Street or Cedar Cove series.  Check out Cozy Mysteries Unlimited for Spring themed and Fall themed reads.

Try something completely new and delve into the symbolism or magic of the Equinox with Danu Forest's Magic Of ebooks.  

While you are having fun following rabbit trails, don't forget to check out Goodreads Best Books for Spring reading as well as PW's Most Anticipated Books of Spring 2017

Happy Reading!

 

Link to Week 11

 


Edited by aggieamy, 19 March 2017 - 10:22 AM.

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#2 aggieamy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 10:21 AM

Hello  dear hearts.  I’m about to head out to visit my dad and sisters in Arizona. Before I leave however, I wanted to apologize to all of you for last week.  I had to take a step back for a few days as I was angry and hurt and anything I said would have been counter productive.  No one likes being publicly chastised.   I made a mistake.   I’m sorry for the poor choice of words and accept the rebuke in the nature it was intended. Unfortunately, how it was handled caused harm, cracked relationships and affected everyone in the group, causing grief and stress. As leader of this group, I take full responsibility.  I’ve already spoken privately with Stacia and apologized.  Sadly, there is no going back to how things were, nor can we continue as if nothing happened. All we can do is start over.

 

I respect what each of you individually brings to the table.  We are a diverse group of strong, passionate women who have managed to get along quite well for the past 8 years.  The majority of the time we have proved we are adult enough to have civil discourse, accepting each other's differences of opinion, without rancor.  We’ve all been a bit more sensitive this year, so all I can ask is that we treat each other with compassion, open hearts, open minds and lots of grace.  The 52 books thread gives everyone a safe harbor in which to discuss books and whatever else they choose without judgement.  

 

Peace and love.  I’ll see you in a couple weeks.


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#3 loesje22000

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 10:35 AM

I finished the Cairo Triology last week and wrote my review in that thread.

I also read a Danish Mystery in the inspector Konrad Simonsen serie mentioned by Mumof2
And am currently reading another one.

Im still reading Gösta Berlings Saga from Selma Lagerlof.
Thanks to the person who mentioned she had written much more then Nils Holgersson Journey!
So good to read something from her again.
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#4 Mothersweets

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 10:59 AM

Good morning everyone!  :grouphug: all around!

 

Just this morning I finished The Road to Little Dribbling by Bill Bryson https://www.goodread...ittle-dribbling. I really enjoy Bill Bryson's writing and this was no exception. He is as charmingly informative and funny as ever but I was taken aback several times by his curmudgeonly attitude and brutal (though imaginary)  attacks on strangers/service people (who were kinda-sorta-maybe deserving of it). I think I went about this backwards as I haven't read Notes From a Small Island  but that didn't diminish in any way my enjoyment of the Little Dribbling book. I gave it four stars on GoodReads.


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#5 ErinE

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 11:28 AM

We are back from vacation.

 

Books read:

 

  • Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee. Space Opera. A mathematician coupled with an undead general lays siege against a space fortress. The third of the Nebula nominees I've read, this was a tough start. It has extensive worldbuilding, where belief in a particular calendar allows certain technology to work and heretics are punished since the technology fails otherwise. Best of the three I've read thus far.
  • Double Entry by Jane Gleeson-White. Business History. A history of double-entry accounting. I found the first part of this book extremely interesting, essentially how merchants and tradesmen better managed their businesses through the use of double-entry accounting, a standard still in use today. The latter half discussed business fraud, GDP, and national wealth, confusing accounting practices with economic measures and laying out her arguments as if fraud and manipulation didn't occur before the rise of standardized accounting.
  • The Fall of Hyperion by Dan Simmons. Space Opera. The travelers from the book Hyperion finish their pilgrimage. Not as good as Hyperion, but still a good book.

I'm still working on Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad and I started listening to Neil Gaiman's Norse Myths.


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#6 mumto2

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 11:31 AM

I actually had my post for when the new thread planned but have been rather overwhelmed. I want to tell everyone here how much I love having you in my life. It's something that really can't be said enough. :grouphug: to all.

I wanted to let you know that my dear friend passed yesterday since many here have been praying for her. She is the friend who was hospitalized New Year's Eve. I just can't believe it, so unbelievably fast. She was an incredibly wonderful person. Probably the most gentle person I have ever known and the biggest introvert. The two of us were quite a combination.....by British standards I am incredibly extroverted. I have spent the day thinking of all the adventures we had. Wonderful times....

Amy, I don't want to forget to thank you for starting us off this week.
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#7 Ethel Mertz

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 11:34 AM

Robin - Thanks so much for your post. Safe travels to you and yours.

 

Amy - Thanks for your equinox post. I chose the word "leaves" for fall and the word "green" for spring and came up with Barbara Pym's A Few Green Leaves. I have a huge pile of library books, but will add that to the list! Still reading Anne Enright's The Green Road for last week's pick!



#8 ErinE

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 11:35 AM

I actually had my post for when the new thread planned but have been rather overwhelmed. I want to tell everyone here how much I love having you in my life. It's something that really can't be said enough. :grouphug: to all.

I wanted to let you know that my dear friend passed yesterday since many here have been praying for her. She is the friend who was hospitalized New Year's Eve. I just can't believe it, so unbelievably fast. She was an incredibly wonderful person. Probably the most gentle person I have ever known and the biggest introvert. The two of us were quite a combination.....by British standards I am incredibly extroverted. I have spent the day thinking of all the adventures we had. Wonderful times....

Amy, I don't want to forget to thank you for starting us off this week.

 

:grouphug: I'm so sorry for your loss.


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#9 Stacia

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 11:42 AM

Sorry for the loss of your friend, mumto2. Sending many hugs....
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#10 Lady Florida.

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 12:23 PM

I'm sorry for your loss mumto2.  :grouphug:


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#11 Violet Crown

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 12:26 PM

Hello friends! Just got back last night from fleeing the SXSW tourists and visiting my dear desert-dwelling relative in a wifi-free zone (seriously - not even a Starbucks ... oh the humanity...), so was unable to post. And I apparently missed other things and probably it's best not to go catch up on previous threads, so I'll just mark my love for Stacia, gratitude for Robin, and thanks to AggieAmy for hosting this week. And Jane, dh says thanks for the book!

Finished since last time:

19. Xenophon, The Persian Expedition
This is Penguin's title for the Anabasis, which I've been meaning for years to get around to reading. Great adventure story, even if scholars now think Xenophon wasn't quite the hero he makes himself out to be. Too bad this is the first Greek text students are made to read, on account of its simple Greek, which ruined it for many people over the years.

20. A. A. Milne, The Red House Mystery
The only mystery Milne ever wrote, this was for the bingo square. Middle Girl loved it, so I gave it a try even though I don't like mysteries. Turned out I still don't like mysteries. But Middle Girl says, Five stars. Actually Milne's introduction, in which he discusses the mystery genre is his usual dryly amusing way, I quite enjoyed.

21. Jo Ella Powell Exley (ed.), Texas Tears and Texas Sunshine: Voices of Frontier Women
A fantastic book. It's excerpts from firsthand accounts by women of the great moments in Texas history as they experienced them; which gives a very different picture than the men's view of the same events that makes it into the history books. For instance, the "Runaway Scrape" -- the mass fleeing of Anglo settlers toward the United States when Santa Ana's armies were approaching after the Goliad massacre and the news that Santa Ana wasn't taking prisoners -- I learned about this as "settlers evacuated while the Texian armies regrouped." But I'd never reflected on the facts that (a) they were headed northeast, and all the Texas rivers run from the northwest to the southeast; and (b) this was in spring, in the flood season. So these women were moving themselves, children, babies, old people, and as much of the household as they could take with them, cross-country over alligator-infested rivers sometimes 5-10 miles wide and marshy ground, drinking contaminated water, and coping with the outbreaks of disease. Five stars. Totally recommended. Trigger warning: alligator and rattlesnake incidents.**

Reading at the moment: The Classic Theatre, Volume I: Six Italian Plays, ed. Eric Bentley. I am an ignoramus when it comes to Commedia dell'Arte, so I'm enjoying learning something new with these comedies. One is "The Mandrake," by Niccolo Machiavelli. Who knew he wrote plays?

*My iphone would in theory allow it; but my poor vision makes that too much of a trial. And AT&T kept sending me messages saying "Welcome to Mexico! Here are your super-high rates." So I tried to keep my phone off, and now I need to sort out their GPS failures from my account.

**I was trying to work in a "Tigger warning" for the Milne book, but was not a clever enough bear.

Edited by Violet Crown, 19 March 2017 - 12:29 PM.

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#12 aggieamy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 12:29 PM

Robin - Thanks so much for your post. Safe travels to you and yours.

 

Amy - Thanks for your equinox post. I chose the word "leaves" for fall and the word "green" for spring and came up with Barbara Pym's A Few Green Leaves. I have a huge pile of library books, but will add that to the list! Still reading Anne Enright's The Green Road for last week's pick!

 

 

I'm only the helper this week and the post is all Robin's. 

 

I do feel a bit more responsibility around here though.  Rather like I should put on my six shooter and waltz around saying, "I'm the law in town now."  

 

:coolgleamA:


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#13 aggieamy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 12:29 PM

Sandy -  ((HUGS))  I am so sorry.   :crying:  :crying:  :crying:


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#14 Violet Crown

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 12:31 PM

I'm very sorry for your awful loss, Sandy.
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#15 Ellesmere

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 12:48 PM

:grouphug: , mum2two, and glad to hear you have some comforting memories of your friend.


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#16 Ethel Mertz

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 12:52 PM

Sandy - So sorry to hear about your friend.

 

 

I'm only the helper this week and the post is all Robin's. 

 

I do feel a bit more responsibility around here though.  Rather like I should put on my six shooter and waltz around saying, "I'm the law in town now."  

 

:coolgleamA:

 

Ah! Guess I didn't ready closely enough. So, thanks Robin for the Equinox post and, Amy, thanks for being the law!



#17 Ellesmere

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 01:08 PM

I shouldn't even be on here, but I am avoiding real life for a minute. If you can't see my sig, here's my Goodreads list of what I've read so far this year.

I realized I was light on non-fiction so I'm finishing up two lighter books (geared for younger readers) The Where, The Why, and The How (art meets science) and 33 Things Every Girl Should Know About Women's History, edited by Tonya Bolden. The history book is older and while it's not knocking my socks off, I'll be going through it with the kids at some point. It was a library display find.

From the science book, one of the artists has an Etsy shop with lots of cute things, some book themed.

Expecting my reading pace to slow way down. I'm sorry to say this in light of poor mum2two's post, because nothing that happened here was that sad or bad, but this past week was, ugh. I'm not even going to detail. But just hoping the best for the BaW group & grateful to hear how it brings comfort to those who need it.

I'm not sure how much I'll be around since I really ought to be Handling Things IRL (I know I'm not alone -- how many times do we post and say we should be doing ....), but I keep getting drawn into threads here & on the rest of the forum, so we'll see. Either way, just very glad to have connected here.

Edited by Ellesmere, 19 March 2017 - 01:51 PM.

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#18 Matryoshka

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 01:09 PM

I finished 3 books this week.

 

27. Radiance by Catherynne Valente - I think I may have really liked this book, but also WTH did I just read???  Set in an alternate universe where the planets (and many moons) are all somehow easily habitable by humans (and they have water, atmosphere and their own life forms), and space travel begins before the time of the Civil War (which doesn't end up happening, nor does westward expansion, so the Iroquois League is still a thing), this novel spans the late 1800's to the 1970's, where in spite of space travel, movies are mostly silent because Edison's family has a patent on talking pictures.  Oh, and movies are made on the Moon, not Hollywood.  And there's a mysterious disappearance.  And it's told in very non-chronological order in the form of movie scripts and notes, interviews, and radio show transcripts and advertisements.  And none of this is ever explained explicitly, it's all implied.  Trippy doesn't begin to describe it.  And yet somehow also quite enjoyable.  3.5 stars.

 

28. Nordermoor/Jar City by Arnaldur Indridason -I haven't read many mysteries in ages and ages, maybe not since my teens - the only ones I can think of since then were the first Flavia de Luce and the Beekeeper's Apprentice, both of which I found okay, but not enough to be excited to continue either series right away.    I've been getting my procedural murder mystery quotient taken up by TV shows, I guess, cause I've sure watched lots of those...  At any rate, I wasn't all that sure going in... but I really, really liked it!  Already ordered the next one. :)  4 stars.

 

29. Utopia by Thomas More - on audio.  I'll have to admit I never would have gotten through this in text.  It was hard enough being narrated by a pompous Brit (although it was just the kind of book I could imaging being narrated by one... lol). At least it was only 4 hours, and I was driving.  Anyway, I actually thought it had some very insightful things to say about the existing systems (some of which could have been equally true about current events, depressingly...), and considering it was written over 500 years ago, more depressing.  The part about the actual Utopians is where it dragged, but that's mostly because it's 500+ years on and some of it's been tried and lots more has been written on these ideas, but considering that this was one of the first books to come up with some of these ideas, I thought it was still good to have gotten through.  So, very glad to have read it, and audio was the way to go.  Oh, and speaking of 500 years old, Utopia has slaves?  Yes, it's instead of prison, there isn't a slave 'class', but still... And if it's such a, well, Utopia, how are enough people constantly breaking the law for there to be so many slaves? Yikes.  3.5 stars.

 

Currently reading:

 

- The Dispossessed by Ursula Le Guin - a reread.  Also has a lot of Utopian themes, so will be even more interesting to read right after Utopia itself.

 

- Exiles of Erin, 19th Century Irish-American Fiction.  Snore.  I'm only going to get through this so I can check off the "Name in title" bingo square.  Did someone say one could use their screen name for this square instead?  If it ever comes up again, I think I might use that instead.  Does middle name count too?

 

- From the Beast to the Blonde - got through 3 chapters this week.  If I read three again this week, I'll be back on track. :)

 

- Romantic Outlaws (about Mary Shelley and her mom) - on ebook - really interesting so far, but haven't had time to get through very much yet.

 

- Born a Crime (on audio) - really, really enjoying this one.  Thanks to the people who recommended the audio for this.  And wow, his mother is quite the woman.

 

 

Coming up, The Handmaid's Tale (for dystopia Bingo square) is sitting here from the library, Homecoming is here on a playaway/audio for Debut Author Bingo square, and Wide Sargasso Sea (for aquamarine) is on hold.


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#19 Matryoshka

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 01:18 PM

mum2two, so sorry for your loss.  :grouphug:  :grouphug:  :grouphug:


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#20 Jane in NC

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 01:28 PM

Hi everyone!

Sandy, I am so sorry for your loss.

And Matryoshka--another Inspector Erlendur convert!

After finishing Colin Cotterill's mystery, The Coroner's Lunch, I decided to remain in the genre. I am finishing up the basic Erlendur series with Strange Shores. Other Arnaldur books await since he is now producing "Young Erlendur" novels.

About The Coroner's Lunch: I loved the setting, Laos in the late seventies, after the Pathet Lao have taken over. The book itself had a strong start but seemed to take a convoluted turn midway through. That said, I liked the characters enough that I will read more in the series.

Have a good week everyone.

Edited by Jane in NC, 19 March 2017 - 01:29 PM.

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#21 Chrysalis Academy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 01:28 PM

Sandy, so sorry for your loss. What a tragedy  :grouphug:  :grouphug:  :grouphug:


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#22 strawberries

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 01:33 PM

I'm so sorry for your loss, mumto2.


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#23 Chrysalis Academy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 01:36 PM

 

 

 

 

29. Utopia by Thomas More - on audio.  I'll have to admit I never would have gotten through this in text.  It was hard enough being narrated by a pompous Brit (although it was just the kind of book I could imaging being narrated by one... lol). At least it was only 4 hours, and I was driving.  Anyway, I actually thought it had some very insightful things to say about the existing systems (some of which could have been equally true about current events, depressingly...), and considering it was written over 500 years ago, more depressing.  The part about the actual Utopians is where it dragged, but that's mostly because it's 500+ years on and some of it's been tried and lots more has been written on these ideas, but considering that this was one of the first books to come up with some of these ideas, I thought it was still good to have gotten through.  So, very glad to have read it, and audio was the way to go.  Oh, and speaking of 500 years old, Utopia has slaves?  Yes, it's instead of prison, there isn't a slave 'class', but still... And if it's such a, well, Utopia, how are enough people constantly breaking the law for there to be so many slaves? Yikes.  3.5 stars.

 

 

 

 

I am also slogging through Utopia at the moment. Such a mix of fascinating and tedious! I have an older edition, and in it "slaves" is translated as "bondsmen."  When I started reading the Utopia excerpt from Imperfect Ideal: Utopian and Dystopian Visions I was somewhat surprised to see it translated as "slaves."  They are slaves, I suppose, but not in the sense we understand it from American slavery - it was a service owed to the state in payment of crimes, rather than prisons. But I agree with you, they do seem quite integral to the economy of Utopia, and More couldn't seem to imagine a perfect world in which some people wouldn't need to belong to an underclass that handles the dirty work.   It's very interesting, I'm reading Too Like the Lightning right now, which could be thought of as a Utopian/fantasy about our world's future, and they too have a Servicer class made up of criminals.  It's clearly modeled directly on More's bondsmen from Utopia. 

 

I haven't finished anything this week except the novella The Merchant and the Alchemist's Gate, written by Ted Chiang, whose short story Stories of Your Life was made into the film Arrival. It was a good story, kind of a 1001 Nights kind of setting, with some interesting thoughts about how time travel would/could work.  I'll post about other stuff when I finally finish them.


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#24 loesje22000

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 01:45 PM

:grouphug: momof2 !
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#25 Lady Florida.

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 02:06 PM

I am also slogging through Utopia at the moment. Such a mix of fascinating and tedious! I have an older edition, and in it "slaves" is translated as "bondsmen."  When I started reading the Utopia excerpt from Imperfect Ideal: Utopian and Dystopian Visions I was somewhat surprised to see it translated as "slaves."  They are slaves, I suppose, but not in the sense we understand it from American slavery - it was a service owed to the state in payment of crimes, rather than prisons. But I agree with you, they do seem quite integral to the economy of Utopia, and More couldn't seem to imagine a perfect world in which some people wouldn't need to belong to an underclass that handles the dirty work.   It's very interesting, I'm reading Too Like the Lightning right now, which could be thought of as a Utopian/fantasy about our world's future, and they too have a Servicer class made up of criminals.  It's clearly modeled directly on More's bondsmen from Utopia. 

 

 

 

Interesting. In the book I'm currently reading, Never Caught: The Washingtons' Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge, the author refers to George and Martha Washington's slaves as bondsmen or bonded. 

 

Also, between the above book and Alexander Hamilton I really, really, dislike nearly all of the founding fathers now. They were mostly jerks. They were brilliant, brave, and did an amazing thing pulling together thirteen diverse states and forming a whole country out of them. But they were jerks, even when you try to excuse some of their behavior because it was a different time. Seriously.


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#26 Onceuponatime

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 02:11 PM

Sorry for the loss of your friend, mumto2.

March has been a crazy month for me, with lots of family birthdays and anniversaries. Plus, we had spring break with a stay-cation, painting the dining room and making a few fun local excursions.

I'm currently reading The Country of the Pointed Firs by Sarah Orne Jewett. So far, it feels like the antidote to Virginia Woolf. We visit a small Maine town where the author goes to write. There we are introduced to various personalities, but the author does not pretend to be able to read their thoughts. She describes them with good humor and empathy for their humanity, in spite of their faults.
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#27 Negin

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 02:24 PM

I wanted to let you know that my dear friend passed yesterday since many here have been praying for her. 

I am so sorry.  :grouphug:   :grouphug:   :grouphug:


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#28 Negin

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 02:28 PM

I read A Moveable Feast - 2 Stars - I read “The Paris Wife” during a visit to Paris several years ago. I thought that it would be interesting to now read Hemingway’s perspective of life in 1920s Paris. This was the first Hemingway book that I’ve read and although I have heard some say that one should not start with this one, I can’t imagine that I’ll really be a fan of his writing style. I don’t think that this book would have been published if it hadn’t been written by Hemingway. To me, his stories were mostly like scattered thoughts. Some were interesting, but many were a bit dry and muddled. I won’t be rushing to read anything else by him anytime soon. Life is short and there are far too many books that I’d like to read. Hemingway is not top on my list.

 

A quote that I liked:

When spring came, even the false spring, there were no problems except where to be happiest. The only thing that could spoil a day was people and if you could keep from making engagements, each day had no limits. People were always the limiters of happiness except for the very few that were as good as spring itself.

 

9780099557029.jpg

 

MY RATING SYSTEM

5 Stars

Fantastic, couldn't put it down

4 Stars

Really Good

3 Stars

Enjoyable

2 Stars

Just Okay – nothing to write home about

1 Star

Rubbish – waste of my money and time. Few books make it to this level, since I usually give up on them if they’re that bad.


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#29 Negin

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 02:29 PM

I do feel a bit more responsibility around here though.  Rather like I should put on my six shooter and waltz around saying, "I'm the law in town now."  

 

:coolgleamA:

You are hilarious!  :lol:


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#30 aggieamy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 02:30 PM

After finishing Colin Cotterill's mystery, The Coroner's Lunch, I decided to remain in the genre. I am finishing up the basic Erlendur series with Strange Shores. Other Arnaldur books await since he is now producing "Young Erlendur" novels.

About The Coroner's Lunch: I loved the setting, Laos in the late seventies, after the Pathet Lao have taken over. The book itself had a strong start but seemed to take a convoluted turn midway through. That said, I liked the characters enough that I will read more in the series.
 

 

 

I had never read a mystery that had that magical realism element before and I thought it was a different book when I started it. I listened to it as an audiobook and for the first hour or so I kept wondering when they were going to get to London because I thought that was the setting.  Nope. Wrong-o.  Like you, I liked the characters and want to see what happens next to them. 


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#31 strawberries

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 03:13 PM

Once again I couldn't settle into any actual grownup books this week. I did read two more middle grade books, Home of the Brave and Shooting KabulHome of the Brave is a novel in verse about a refugee boy from Sudan who resettles in Minnesota. I liked it overall but felt like it strayed a bit close to stereotype at times. However, it's possible that I just looked at it more critically than, say, Inside Out & Back Again (also a novel in verse about a refugee child) because Katherine Applegate is obviously not Sudanese, whereas Thanhha Lai wrote based on her own experience fleeing Vietnam. Sometimes I struggle with keeping knowledge of the author separate from their work. Anyway, Shooting Kabul is about a boy who loves photography (the 'shooting' reference) who feels responsible for his younger sister being accidentally left behind as his family fled Afghanistan. Although it's shelved in the "teen" section in our library, it's definitely intended for 8-12 year olds, so some of the background information is stated in way that's a little too straightforward to feel natural. However, the story pulled me in - I was reading it in the busy front area of the library while waiting for DS's chess club to end and literally forgot where I was, which does not usually happen when I'm stuck at chess club.

 

This week I also pre-read books for the kids' literature units: A Lion Among Us for DD and Bull Run for DS. I caught up on The Story of Science and From the Beast to the Blonde and read another chapter in Experiencing Broadway Music.  We finished (and all loved) The Mysterious Howling on audiobook and requested the next one in the series. 

 

We'll be visiting my SIL in Orlando at the end of the month. I like to take thematic reading on road trips, but I think we've read most of the Florida/Disney related books our library has. I did request a new one for myself and DH: Oh, Florida! How America's Weirdest State Influences the Rest of the Country. It looks entertaining.


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#32 Kareni

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 03:44 PM

   I wanted to let you know that my dear friend passed yesterday since many here have been praying for her. ...

 

My sympathies on the death of your friend, mumto2; I hope that memories of good times with your friend will bring you comfort in this challenging time.

**

 

A one day only currently free fantasy classic for Kindle readers ~

 

The Worm Ouroboros by E. R. Eddison
 
 
About the Author
E. R. Eddison (1882–1945) was born in Leeds, England, and shared an early education with fellow author Arthur Ransome. Later, after attending Eton and Oxford, Eddison joined the Board of Trade, where he worked until his retirement in 1938. In 1922 Eddison released his most enduring and critically acclaimed work, The Worm Ouroboros, depicting the land of Mercury. Eddison would return to Mercury a decade later with his Zimiamvian trilogy.
 

"Demonland and Witchland wage war in this massively influential fantasy classic

With the arrival of a Witchland envoy making demands of Demonland’s chief lords, peace between the two lands is irrevocably shattered. The chief lords Juss and Spitfire send their brother Goldry to defeat the witch king. Though he is initially victorious, Goldry ultimately gets captured, leaving it up to his brothers to rescue him. So begins a fantasy adventure whose influence has endured for nearly a century.
 
The Worm Ouroboros is an undisputed classic of fantasy literature, and has been an avowed influence on the likes of J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, and Ursula K. Le Guin. Entirely immersive and written in near-Elizabethan tongue, the novel takes readers on an unforgettable ride across the plane of Mercury, flanked by soaring hippogriffs, with an unforgettable finish that impresses as much now as it did nearly a century ago."

 

Regards,

Kareni


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#33 Matryoshka

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 04:06 PM

So, in other bookish news, yesterday morning dd18 called me and let me know that the foreign language bookstore was closing forever  :crying:  :crying:  :crying:   and that everything was 70% off.  I've been going there my whole life.  My mom got the curriculum she taught me German with as a little kid there.   :crying:  So dd and I both hopped on the road (she's in college) and met to do some shopping.  Pickings were already slim...

 

She got:

 

- A workbook on Catalán grammar

- An audio course on Catalán

- A novel in Catalán                          (she's hoping to be in Barcelona this summer; she already speaks Spanish and obviously really wants to learn Catalán :))

 

Dd was all excited to find the complete works of Hegel in two volumes (she's big into philosophy lately), till we realized each volume was $500, so together still $300 after discount.  Um, nope. 

 

I got:

 

- A Swedish novel translated into German (The Girl Who Saved the King of Sweden by Jonas Jonasson, which in German is titled The Illiterate Woman Who Could Calculate, which is quite a different take on a title - but apparently pretty much what it was titled in Swedish...)  Has anyone read this?  It was kind of an impulse purchase because the shelves were getting bare, but 70% off!

 

- A Portuguese novel translated into Spanish (José Saramago's Blindness, which was already on my TR list, happy to have found it in Spanish :) )

- Two mid-grade teaching stories for the Spanish class I'm teaching to some homeschooling kids.  I wanted more like this but they had almost nothing left. :(

 

The line was sooooo long, everyone had an armload of books; there was one old guy at the register that was calculating discounts by hand and chatting with the clientele.  I think they're used to like one customer an hour or less.  Waited so long in line dd missed her train and I drove her back to college, so that was nice extra time with dd.  We also ended having lunch before and coffee/dessert after our shopping.  

 

We also stopped in to the poetry store around the corner, which is only sporadically open.  They are also having a hard time staying afloat, she said she had a go-fund-me page to try to make ends meet.  They are sporadically open because they close anytime the one person there needs a break.  Dd bought a volume of poetry the lady recommended.

 

But what's going to happen to places like Harvard Square if the foreign language book store and the poetry store and all the other cool quirky unique shops close?  I mean, that's what we go in there for.  If all that's left is chain stores that can afford the high rents, we could just go to the mall.  While we were standing in line at the foreign language book store, they started taking empty bookshelves out.  :crying:

 

Had a lovely day with dd, though...


Edited by Matryoshka, 19 March 2017 - 04:09 PM.

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#34 Rosie_0801

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 04:13 PM

Spring is in the air in the Northern Hemisphere and Autumn in the Southern side of the world. Nature's paint palette,  combines rich, deep and bold colors with brilliant hues to entertain the eye.  Just imagine the synergism as we blend the seasons to enrich our reading as well as our bookshelves.  

 

We only have autumn where there are deciduous trees. So I have Autumn at my house here, but didn't when I lived on my aunt's property. :)

 

But there is still a change of season. Early Winter began yesterday.

 

http://www.herringis...rg/seasons1.htm



#35 Ausmumof3

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 04:30 PM

I actually had my post for when the new thread planned but have been rather overwhelmed. I want to tell everyone here how much I love having you in my life. It's something that really can't be said enough. :grouphug: to all.

I wanted to let you know that my dear friend passed yesterday since many here have been praying for her. She is the friend who was hospitalized New Year's Eve. I just can't believe it, so unbelievably fast. She was an incredibly wonderful person. Probably the most gentle person I have ever known and the biggest introvert. The two of us were quite a combination.....by British standards I am incredibly extroverted. I have spent the day thinking of all the adventures we had. Wonderful times....

Amy, I don't want to forget to thank you for starting us off this week.


I'm sorry for your loss :grouphug:
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#36 Ali in OR

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 04:42 PM

Popping in while in the midst of one more busy week.

 

I'm still reading our book club pick for April, Beautiful Ruins, which I am enjoying. It's due tomorrow and I probably won't be done yet, so looking at a fine I think!

 

The girls and I are all enjoying The Little Book of Hygge and I think we all want to move to Denmark. We immediately loved all things Hygge--cozy, comfort, cake, candles (just to name a few that have alliteration). And I've barely started the book.

 

Extra hugs to all who need them. Or if you're not a hugger, a nod of empathy with a smile and some chocolate. I'm not here much during the week, but do think of you all. One more week until spring break and this one holds a math final for me and a student civil rights test to get my sub license, plus guardianship paperwork for dd (finished today--just need to mail), a ballet performance, and the usual driving everywhere. Then spring break next week!


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#37 Kareni

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 04:57 PM

I finished a couple of books ~

 

I quite enjoyed the male/male love story For Real (Spires) by Alexis Hall; this is a book I’ll be re-reading.

 

There's a good review here.

 

**

 

I also re-read with pleasure Jo Goodman’s historical romance My Reckless Heart (it’s now on sale for 99 cents for Kindle readers).

 

"Decker Thorne learned early life lessons on the streets of London, stealing to earn his way. That devil-to-pay existence does not prepare him for someone like Jonna Remington, a fiercely independent woman who is not impressed with his charm or cunning. As owner of Remington Shipping, what Jonna needs is Decker's deft touch at the helm of her finest clipper.

With the Remington fortune riding on Decker's success, Jonna is vulnerable and beholding, and when her daring plan gives rise to new dangers, it is Decker who puts his life on the line to save hers. On board Huntress, the clipper she owns but where he is master, Decker can keep her safe from everyone but himself. As they make the Atlantic crossing from Boston to London, Jonna must decide how safe she wants to be, or if Decker has stolen the one thing she did not know she had to give... her own reckless heart."

 

Regards,

Kareni


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#38 Chrysalis Academy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 04:58 PM

I finished reading Cockroaches, a horrifying and powerful autobiography of a Rwandan Tutsi who lived through the extended Rwandan genocide. Her family was first displaced in 1964 and lived as refugees and pariahs - cockroaches - for the next 30 years. She and her brother were the ones chosen to survive, and they were sent away to school. She had married and was living in France in 2004. 37 members of her family were slaughtered. I don't know how she goes on, but her book is powerful and brave and heartbreaking. My yead is swirling with thoughts, about Africa but about how small differences between groups can turn into something so horrific. It's a lesson for all times, all people, all places.


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#39 Butter

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 05:19 PM

:grouphug: mumto2

 

My middle boy and husband shared their germs with me so I've been sitting and reading all day and so finished two books.  That makes 13 in March.  I don't usually read quite this much.

 

I re-read Alex: The Life of a Child by Frank Deford.  When I was a kid, probably 12 or 13, I ran across that book at a yard sale and bought it.  I read it several times.  I loved that book.  So when the eBook popped up for $1.99 I grabbed it.  I still love it.  I was kind of a weird kid between reading the complete works of Shakespeare and a book about a little kid dying of cystic fibrosis.

 

I also read Another Saturday Night and I Ain't Got No Body by Jennie Marts.  It was a fun, somewhat brainless read.  Exactly what I needed today with my brain all fuzzy from having this cold.  The best part was it was centered around a group of women (and one teenager) who are in a weekly book group together so some of the chapters were centered on their get togethers talking about books ranging from Catcher in the Rye to Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.  And then there were a few mysteries thrown in there plus a super hot guy.  Very enjoyable.


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#40 Faithr

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 05:27 PM

I finished listening to One, Two Buckle My Shoe by Agatha Christie.  I really enjoyed it.   That fulfills my mystery square for the book bingo challenge.   I am now starting on Sidney Poitiers autobiography, also on audio.  It too is very interesting.  

 

I am still working through Laurus.  I'm only reading it at night (which is always slow going, some nights I read about 3 sentences and then conk out!) but it is a fascinating book.  I'm also in this long City of God by Augustine book study (a full semester long).  The reading for last week (Book XV) was referenced in the novel Laurus!  I about screamed when I realized it!  I love it when stuff like that happens.

 

Violet Crown - I read The Red House mystery a few years ago - it is a quintessential British murder mystery.  I can see how if you liked that sort of thing you'd give it 5 stars and if you didn't you wouldn't be able to finish it!  

 

I am sorry for your loss Mumto2.


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#41 Kareni

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 07:09 PM

I just finished a re-read of a 1989 Nora Roberts' book, For Now, Forever (MacGregors, Book 5), which I enjoyed once more. I'd estimate that it's set in the 1950s.

 

"Self-made millionaire Daniel MacGregor has a perfect life that’s only missing one thing: the perfect woman. And though he’s sure he’s found her in Anna Whitfield, the dedicated medical student is quite sure of her future plans…ones that don’t include an overbearing man like Daniel. But Daniel’s attempts to woo her will change her mind and heart, lead to a forty-year marriage—and launch a formidable dynasty…"

 

Regards,

Kareni


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#42 Chrysalis Academy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 07:52 PM

I finished another excellent yet difficult read, The Sympathizer. I see why it won so many awards, I think it is The Book about the Vietnam war, from the Vietnamese perspective, written by a Vietnamese-American refugee.  It was engaging, clever, well-written, intelligent, and I thoroughly appreciated, even enjoyed it, until the last couple of chapters, which were just harrowing. A very difficult torture scene was described, please do be warned, but despite that I do recommend the book, but only if you can tolerate a description of serious brutality against a woman. It was almost too much for me.


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#43 Narrow Gate Academy

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 08:01 PM

momto2 :grouphug:
aggieamy - Thanks for being in charge👮

I haven't finished anything new in the past couple of days, so my book count for last week stands at two.

Finished This Week (reviews linked) - Books 27-28

27. Naked in Death by Robb
28. Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain by Ratey

Long term reads:
~ESV Bible - read the remainder of Judges, all of Ruth, and began First Samuel
~History of the Ancient World - finished chapters 21-23
~From the Beast to the Blonde by Warner - I read the two chapters related to the Sibyls this week (5-6). To be honest, I'm not finding the current chapters very interesting. She seems to be making a lot of assumptions based on art. I guess it's just not what I expect of a history of fairy tale. Maybe it will make more sense once I get to the second section on individual stories. (I will attempt to persevere for 6 more chapters.)

Current reads (always subject to change on a whim)

Audiobook: The Hidden Oracle by Riordan - I haven't done very well at finding time for audio books the past couple of weeks. I'm planning to make more of an effort to find time to listen this week.

Fiction:
The Invisible Library by Cogman - Slowly making progress on this. Currently just over halfway.

Nonfiction: The Obesity Code by Fung - Originally I had planned to read Gaiman's Norse Mythology but was unable to renew. Since this book also has a waiting list, I decided to move it up the queue for this week.
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#44 Angelaboord

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 09:11 PM

Sandy, what terrible news. I'm so very sorry to hear of your loss.




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#45 Angelaboord

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 09:28 PM

I am maintaining a half-hearted Lent. I'm doing a good job at staying off Facebook, at least.

Since my last report, I have finished 4 books:

The Shelf: From LEQ to LES: Adventures in Extreme Reading, Phyllis Rose -- more a set of essays than a narrative and not terribly "extreme", but I did pick up a few titles for my TBR list, including the 18th century novel Gil Blas .

Late-Talking Children:A Symptom or a Stage?, Stephen Camarata -- kind of a handbook for navigating the system if you are the parent of a child who talks late but otherwise seems "normal".

The Story of My Life, Helen Keller -- Absolutely wonderful. So much to say about education, and I loved Helen's lush prose and wry humor.

The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit, Mike Finkel -- Everybody seems to have heard of this guy but me. The story of Chris Knight, who disappeared into the Maine woods in the 1980's, living completely alone and surviving by stealing food, clothing, etc. from summer residents until he was caught just a few years ago. Excellent book, much more personal than sensationalistic.

And my dh just finished reading Farmerboy to the boys at bedtime. I enjoyed listening in for the 4th time, so I guess that counts.




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#46 Faithr

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 10:02 PM

The Stranger in the Woods sounds really interesting!


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#47 Negin

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 03:29 AM

White Noise has been on my wish list for a while and the Kindle version is on sale today. 

 

9780143105985.jpg


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#48 mumto2

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 09:56 AM

My birthstone challenge update.......

Aquamarine is not an easy word to find in a book title so I went with Beryl. I found a book on Goodreads that is really highly rated, lots of 5*reviews, by Beryl Singleton Bissell called The Scent of God. https://www.goodread...rom_search=true. It is supposed to be very well done. In the stack and hopefully I will manage to pick it up in the next few days. I put it in my currently reading in case anyone wants to read the description.

I have also been spelling the stone and think I will be able to complete this months.

A.......Pocket Apocalypse by Seanan McGuire (completed)
Q.......The Winter Queen by Boris Akuhin
U.......A Perilous Undertaking by Deanna Raybourne (completed)
A.......The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper by Phaedra Patrick (completed)
M.......The Real Macaw by Donna Andrews (completed)
A.......Alley Kat Blues by Karen Kijewski (completed)
R.......Stork Raving Mad by Donna Andrews (completed)
I.......The Girl in the Ice by Lotte/Soren Hammer (currently reading)
N.......Magic for Nothing by Seanan McGuire
E.......Etched in Bone by Anne Bishop
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#49 Lady Florida.

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 10:03 AM

I started Never Caught late Saturday night and finished it yesterday. I didn't realize it would be such a quick read. When I finished the Kindle book, it said I was at 57%. The rest was footnotes, links, and acknowledgements.

 

It was good but not great. I was expecting more of Ona Judge's actual words because that's what the description leads you to believe. There was a lot of "Judge must have felt, must have heard, must have known, probably thought" speculation. Maybe Judge didn't reveal that much so it had to be expanded. Even with that slight disappointment I would still recommend this book.


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#50 thessa516

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 11:50 AM

Books Finished This Week:

Farewell to Manzanar by Jeanne Houston - brought history alive for us and isn't that just what a good historical non-fiction should do?

Mark of the Thief by Jennifer Nielsen - eh, just okay, however it'll be just the thing for one of my kids

Bookshop on the Corner by Jenny Colgan - charming little fluff book

 

Currently Reading:

The Devil's Arithmetic by Jane Yolen - read aloud for the older kids

Charlotte's Web by E. B. White - read aloud for the younger kids

Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer - family read aloud

The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking 


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