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Everything posted by Colleen

  1. I didn't realize you were heading to Paris, Jenn. Lovely! Enviable! I tend to do a good bit of traveling here & there, but it's been a fistful of years since I was in Europe. Live vicariously for us, won't you? And in return, I shall live vicariously for you while in the nearly-comparable destination of Columbus, Georgia. Ahem! I do always find that every place, with a few notable exceptions (Wells, Nevada comes to mind) has something to offer. Columbus, with its river walk, historic district, and a handful of surprisingly good museums, proves the case. Look forward to hearing more about Parisian book shops and so on ~ and of course you now have to tell us the name of the comic book series!
  2. Yes, it's a great vibe. Fortunately for all of you, I'm primarily gleaning so won't be adding exponentially to your own lists. :p Such a fun read! Eleanor Estes was a favorite of mine, too. I'm low on time ~ need to make travel arrangements & hopefully fly out Tuesday night. Yes, my guy got the "go" and graduates Friday! I was honestly a bit taken by surprise since going straight through is rather rare. Super impressed & amazed, but from a logistical standpoint...ack! Thanks for the good thoughts, all.
  3. Anxiously awaiting a call. Apparently they haven't yet been released to use the phones ~ of which there are only a handful, so it takes a while for everyone to get a chance. So nerve-wracking. Thank you for asking!
  4. Gotta love a book discussion that runs the gamut from Mr. Putter & Tabby to War & Peace!
  5. So glad you're in a safe place, physically & emotionally, Rose. Fwiw, I am a not-prudish adult who even in ideal circumstances doesn't want to read about sex. The very phrase "steamy vampire sex"makes me laugh, lol. Love the video, Jane. A good friend & I have Iceland on our mutual bucket list. I'm another Hemingway non-enthusiast (though It's been a long while since I gave him a read), but this talk of Nick Adams stories piques my interest. Have never heard of them and for that matter, didn't even know he had a Northern MI connection. Definitely want to check it out. In response to your resounding recommendations (lol), I started my Carson McCullers reading with The Heart is a Lonely Hunter and am thoroughly enjoying it so far. Last week I put in an inter-library loan request for Afghan author Atiq Rahimi's The Patience Stone, assuming it would be some time in coming. It's already here! So I may read that soon & also watch the movie version. On a personal note, I'd appreciate good thoughts for my oldest son & his classmates today & tomorrow as they finish the penultimate days of Ranger school. On Sunday they'll find if they receive the "go" to graduate on Friday. Some will have to recycle (re-do) swamp phase. Some will be dropped (sent home) after 62 days of grueling training. It's nerve-wracking to bide the hours, thinking of these soldiers and waiting for the call. Hope for the best, prepare for the, er, alternative!
  6. Thinking of you, Rose. Tough call, I'm sure, but best to seek shelter elsewhere.
  7. I clicked on the link with trepidation ("Just what I need; another list!") and am happy to report that it doesn't work for me ~ the list, not the link, lol. As compelling as I found Krakauer's Into Thin Air and Piers Paul Read's Alive, I wouldn't read them "for" Nepal or Uganda. Ann Patchett's Bel Canto for Peru? No. I wonder what awards some of these received? ("You're all winners in my book!" (pun intended).) Yep, I'm with you, having studied Russian language & history. And like you, I wonder, too, if he would have moved were it not for the circumstances. Just saying that I wouldn't describe him (or anyone) as "Soviet". What great lines ~ both from the author and from you, Heather. How have I gone all these years and without identifying myself as a "free range personality"? Ha! Love it. Fits well with "I am large, I contain multitudes." I'm picking up all manner of good quotes here today! Does anyone who's read Carson McCullers have a recommendation as to where I should start? I was so sure I'd read some of her work, but upon perusal, it's not ringing a bell. So which to delve into first: The Ballad of the Sad Cafe, The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, or The Member of the Wedding?
  8. Bother. I just multi-quoted & responded to a number of comments, only to have the post rejected by The System. For sake of ease, I'll skip the quoting and just offer up my tidbits: ~ Eliana, hope your meeting went well, and thanks for the clarification. I hear you, don't disagree, but am thinking more along Penguin's line. That being, for this particular challenge, setting matters to me. (I don't like referring to it as a challenge, but can't think of another, better word. Venture? Endeavor?) ~ Sidebar re Krzhizhanovsky: I don't agree that he's ultimately Soviet. That's a political term, and our application of it to individuals was/is political in nature. I think I'd say he was Russian, though the Kiev birthplace can present a challenge, you have a point there, Jane. ~ I read some of Walker's book when I was in my El Camino de Santiago phase. When our (intact) family was last in Europe, in 2012, I declared that I'd do the pilgrimage the year I turn 50 (2019). I then immersed myself in the subject for a time. Despite my own penchant for humor & sarcasm, Walker's tone wore on me. Came across as trying too hard, or somewhat immature; I can't recall what it was exactly. At any rate, I'm less certain now of the walk, through no fault of Walker's. Maybe I will, maybe I won't. Maybe I'll do another marathon instead. Although Hawaii 5-0 sounds appealing, too. ;-D ~ thinking of you, Rose!!! ~
  9. Feeling rather dense because as many times as I read this, I'm not sure what you mean. I absolutely don't see this list/challenge (or any other) as a means of box checking, and I hold loosely any notions of what does or doesn't count for this or that. But of course a book has to have some connection in some way to the given place. Sorry to be thick, but I'm not sure I understand you...? : )
  10. Words can not express my love for My Father's Dragon. I first read it with my oldest son (now 22) when he was a very small person. Reread with each of the next four sons ~ with many readings in-between. Did I mention I adore this book? Makes for a great gift along with Elmer & the Dragon and The Dragons of Blueland, too. I think I need to read it again. Seriously!
  11. That does sound lovely! I did some ESL training back in the day, when I intended to put it to use in Slovakia. Ended up in Switzerland instead, lol. I'd enjoy getting back to ESL tutoring, but I need actual paid employment and I've yet to come across options there. Still, it's such a pleasure to share books & language with others. I do believe she has a number of "Danish" stories, but like you, it's been a long while since I read those collections.
  12. I want to respond to various quotes but this thread is moving too fast for me. Thanks for the international suggestions, Eliana. Also love the takeouts from Catch-22, a book I gifted my oldest son a handful of years ago. I should suggest when he finishes Ranger school that he give it a reread to better appreciate the sardonic wit. So many other great mentions here! I have nothing revelatory to contribute. Am quickly reading through Be Safe, Love Mom: A Military Mom's Stories of Courage, Comfort, and Surviving Life on the Home Front. Rather specific to the moment and not the sort of thing I'd typically read, but I need the comfort & company. Along those lines, Rose, I am thinking about you. Yes, it's hard to be the only grownup ~ sorry to say, I know the feeling all too well. Hugs!
  13. Oh, Rose ~ how hard. I'm sorry. As you likely know, late summer was a fire-and-smoke laden for much of WA & OR ~ worst conditions I've ever seen here. The terror of fire bearing down is unimaginable. Stay safe.
  14. I was pleased yesterday to come across a $8 excellent condition copy of some Carson McCullers. The volume includes The Heart is A Lonely Hunter, The Ballad of the Sad Cafe, and The Member of the Wedding. This Georgia start to my States tour will keep me satisfied when I head to Columbus soon. I am still waffling as to how to tackle the World Tour list. My library happened to have In the Shadow of the Banyan Tree (Cambodia) and Broken April (Albania) readily available so I checked out & perused them. Both are enticing. But unlike you mega-bibliophiles, I'm not stellar at reading multiple fiction books at once. I like things interrelate. Maybe I should start with a book from the nation of Georgia, lol.
  15. I have a few possibilities for Jamaica on my World Tour list, and this one is at the very top. I'm partial bc of the author's name; wondering if he pronounces it like my Kai. It's not currently in our library system, but I requested they purchase it so I imagine it will be soon. Probably long before I get around to reading it. Haha! It really does. I'm amazed you stuck with it! Right?! I wonder the same wrt to some of my youthful reading & viewing habits. "The Amateur's Guide to Quilt Guild By-Laws", lol ~ could be a hot commodity, lol!
  16. What the...others of you have Real Lives? I am all astonishment and feel rather like the Velveteen Rabbit. ;-)
  17. Erin, have you read The Snow Child by the same author? It's suggested on one of the lists above and piqued my interest, too.
  18. Rose (Chrysalis Academy), I've been meaning to tell you how much I love the quote in your signature. It's been so long since I read Love in the Time of Cholera, I don't recall that line. As well, I didn't have children when I read it, so it likely didn't make an impression on me. I'm so keenly aware now of the fact that in part bc of homeschooling, I did form a friendship with my sons while raising them. Which is lovely, and yet, hard as they grow up & away. Re the states you still need to read, there are so many great Montana choices, including of course Norman Maclean's stories and his Young Men and Fire. But I'll also recommend a book near & dear to my heart, Mildred Walker's Winter Wheat. I grant that she wasn't a Montana native, but her vivid descriptions of that landscape speak otherwise. Perhaps not award-caliber writing, but a thoughtful, lovely book.
  19. I think my former husband suffers from this, lol. Nice! Will you approach the world list geographically, or...? I thought about backdating the states list, which would whittle it down significantly, but I like the idea of starting fresh and there's plenty that I've not read ~ or want to reread. I read a bit of Carson McCullers back in college, for example, but I'm headed soon to her native Columbus, GA so good reason to read her again. I like to associate what I'm reading with my immediate location, the weather, my mood. Reading Southern lit while in the South is good & right. During winter in WA, I'll want to read "cold" states. I could not read about an ice storm while on a Big Island beach; and on the flip side, I can't be in a ski lodge & transport to the Everglades. Just doesn't work for me. I had a point when I started that paragraph, but I lost it. Thinking in general about the order of the books, I guess. The states list isn't an issue, but I can't decide how to approach the world list. Maybe no particular order, just go with whatever speaks to me in the moment (and is available!).
  20. Well, it was pretty much non-fiction and children's lit. I was in an Uruguay phase, thanks largely to forward Diego Forlán, lol. But I didn't read any Uruguayan lit, more articles about the history. I got very into the 1972 national rugby team's plane crash and read Alive and Miracle in the Andes. Spain was in the final four (and ultimately won). Our second son was a huge Barca fan, and I hoped to go to Spain & Camp Nou on our next visit to Han's family. (Which we did, in 2012.) So I went through Robert Hughes's Barcelona in fits & starts. An uncle of Hans's who is a Barcelona native & historian recommended to me a number of books, not one of which I ever found in English translation. I'd read some Nadine Gordimer when I was younger and always meant to revisit her. Bc the tournament was in South Africa and in July, I read July's People ~ or tried to, anyway. I couldn't get into it. Anyone here a Gordimer fan or have a particular book of hers that you recommend?
  21. The fact that I am posting this during Thursday NFL is a tribute to you all. ;-) Yep, yep.'re 55? Or was it not a math question? LOL I hear you. I'm imprinted, being born in Germany to a German mother, though I lived there so briefly. And my time in New Orleans influenced me so deeply, as did, of course, living in Switzerland, marrying there & birthing my first son there. And yet of my 48 years, the vast majority are in Western WA. And I've been here, in this town, now for 21 years. So I am of here. And yet...not. So interesting, how the puzzle pieces fit together. I guess to me it's semantics. I didn't interpret the world book list as a challenge. Just an idea, no different than reviews & suggestions that offer inspiration. : )
  22. Oh, yeh, I gotcha. I phrased that poorly. I do realize the book has nothing to do with sports. Only meant that the list's origins ~ inspired by a sporting event ~ resonated. Very much the sort of thing I'd do. Come to think of it, I did something similar during the 2010 World Cup finals but more non-fiction based.
  23. Hmm...I'm not thinking in those terms and I'm not sensing that from anyone else here. I don't force myself to read things just because. I think it's fun to come up with angles and themes, but I don't go through motions in intellectual pursuits simply to check off boxes. I see lists, suggestions, and discussion in general ~ like discussion here ~ as a a means of gleaning & sharing ideas & information.
  24. Absolutely. I had the same reaction. It's not about Alaska, it's not by an Alaskan author, just happens to involve Alaska. (Thanks to the subject's ill-based idealism and lack of common sense. But I digress.) Each list (some more than others) have some selections that I'd never consider go-to books in a literary state tour. Thus the trade-outs.
  25. Maybe. It's a reasonable question, within the context of this discussion.
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