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Book a Week in 2012 - week 36


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Good Morning, my lovelies! Today is the start of week 36 in our quest to read 52 books in 52 weeks. Welcome back to all our readers, welcome to all those just joining in and to all who are following our progress. Mr. Linky is all set up on the 52 books blog to link to your reviews.

 

52 Books Blog - Back to school: I've discovered K12's Human Odyssey and liked it so much decided to use it for 7th grade history spine. Also ordered the 2nd book in the series which will have in my hot little hands next week ;) Immersing myself in history with SWB's History of the Medieval World. Although I really should finish History of the Ancient World first. *grin*

 

What is your favorite period of history to study and what history book have you enjoyed reading?

 

Publisher Weekly's Best New Books list for September 3 is very interesting and eclectic.

 

Blogger friend is hosting Stephen King Dark Tower Readalong which runs from September 2012 through July 2013. The very first book I read when bought my nook was Dark Tower 1: The Gunslinger. Have the 2nd book in my tbr list so... Who wants to join me.

 

 

What are you reading this week?

 

 

 

 

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Ah. A new week of Book a Week. One of my favorite things about Sundays.

 

I'm still working on All Creatures and enjoying it but it's not a fast read because there's no plot dragging you on to see how it ends. Instead it's just nice stories about the day in the life of this country vet.

 

Finished an audiobook of The Cat Who Played Brahms by Lillian Jackson Braun. I've read/listened to it before but it had been awhile. Loved it. It's a comfort book.

 

In progress:

 

Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency by Douglass Adams

All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot

Harris and Me by Gary Paulsen

Carry on, My Bowditch by Jean Lee Lantham (read aloud)

 

2012 finished books:

 

96. The Cat Who Played Brahms by Lillian Jackson Braun (****)

95. Bringing Up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman (**)

94. Surviving Hitler by Andrea Warren (****)

93. The Lady in the Lake by Raymond Chandler (***)

92. Playful Learning by Mariah Bruehl (***)

91. The Cat Who Ate Danish Modern by Lillian Jackson Braun - audiobook (****)

90. The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven by Sherman Alexie (***)

89. Catherine, Called Birdy by Karen Cushman - YA (****)

88. The Mirror Cracked Side to Side by Agatha Christie (***)

87. The Princess Bride by William Goldman (*****)

86. Crocodiles on the Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters (***)

86. The Tattooed Potato and Other Clues by Ellen Raskin - YA (***)

84. Supermarket by Satoshi Azuchi (**)

83. Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto (*****)

82. Stein on Writing by Sol Stein (****)

81. Order from Chaos by Liz Davenport (**)

 

Books 41 - 80

Books 1 - 40

 

Amy's Rating System:

 

***** - Fantastic, couldn't put it down

**** - Very good

*** - Enjoyable but nothing special

** - Not recommended

* - Horrible

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Taking a hiatus from Life Skills for Kids. There is only so much you can take before your brain fizzles.

 

Finished reading I"ll be Watching You by Charles De Lint. I love all his books, especially those from his Newford series.

 

Just received a great book that will go along well with our history studies: Journeys on the Silk Road. Love the cover!

 

Not sure what I'm reading next. Have been enjoying listening to audio book "Origin in Death" which is book # 21 in J.D. Robb's In Death Series.

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52 Books Blog - Back to school: I've discovered K12's Human Odyssey and liked it so much decided to use it for 7th grade history spine. Also ordered the 2nd book in the series which will have in my hot little hands next week ;) Immersing myself in history with SWB's History of the Medieval World. Although I really should finish History of the Ancient World first. *grin*

 

What is your favorite period of history to study and what history book have you enjoyed reading?

 

I'm also using the K12 Human Odyssey (volume 2) for our history this year. :001_smile:

 

Personally, I love studying ancient history & I would love to see the pyramids in person someday.

 

A history-related book that I love is Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World. Excellent & I highly recommend it.

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For my book club, I'm reading

100yearsofsolitude.jpg

 

--------------------------

 

 

I have it and been ignoring it, meaning to read it and keep ignoring it. Since you are reading it, looks like now would be the perfect time. I shall read it along with you. Pinky swear!

 

Ah. A new week of Book a Week. One of my favorite things about Sundays.

 

Finished an audiobook of The Cat Who Played Brahms by Lillian Jackson Braun. I've read/listened to it before but it had been awhile. Loved it. It's a comfort book.

 

 

Makes me happy too! ;)

I recently downloaded Braun's The Cat Who Could Read Backwards. Looking forward to reading it.

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I have it and been ignoring it, meaning to read it and keep ignoring it. Since you are reading it, looks like now would be the perfect time. I shall read it along with you. Pinky swear!

 

:D Yay! Anyone else want to join in w/ reading it?

 

I actually started reading it about 13 or 14 years ago, but that's when I was a new mom w/ an infant & I just didn't have the brain power to keep up w/ numerous generations of characters that all have the same name. :lol: It's one of those "I've been meaning to read it forever" books & finally our book club picked it, so it has given me the push I needed to start it again.

 

I hope I enjoy it & I think I will. I'm just a little wary because I really disliked his other very famous book, Love in the Time of Cholera.

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Finished reading

 

65.) Post Office by Charles Bukowski - Very fun and light book. This is the first book I have read by Bukowski. Since Robin mentioned the sale on Bukowski books for the Nook last week, I bought a few, and I'm now reading one of his books of poetry. I'm enjoying reading his poems about events in his life which were also events in Post Office.

 

66.) The Elements of Style by Strunk and White - Strunk instructs writers not to come off as full of themselves while often coming off as full of himself - funny. I read the illustrated version, and some of the pictures were pretty humorous. This is probably something I should read once every couple of years.

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Following a suggestion from Karin, I read a mystery by Arnaldur Indridason, Silence of the Grave (#41). This translation from the Icelandic is rivetting but the book is far from a cozy mystery! The scenes of spousal abuse are brutal. Nonetheless I was drawn into this well paced but dark Nordic tale.

 

Let's talk about Penmarric for a bit. This novel by Susan Howatch employs her technique of utilizing different characters as narrators. In this book, there are five so that each of the differing voiced sections almost form five novellas. While the book is set in the late 19th/early 20th century, Howatch is in fact telling the tale of the Plantagenett king Henry II and his progeny. The first section is narrated by Mark (Henry). He annoyed me so much that I had to put the book down after finishing the section written from his perspective. Fortunately I went back to read the next two sections narrated by Janna (Eleanor of Aquitaine) and Adrian (Geoffrey of York). There is the potential to be bogged down by the next irritating narrator, Philip (Richard the Lionhearted) although I am completely intrigued by how Howatch uses a Cornish tin mine as the metaphor for Richard's crusade.

 

Bottom line: Howatch is a magnificent story teller and student of history. She is just such a darn good writer that when her characters are despicable, boy do we despise them!!

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Ah. A new week of Book a Week. One of my favorite things about Sundays.

 

I wasn't sure if it was Sunday or Monday that the new week starts. Now I know to look for it on Sundays.

 

I didn't finish anything last week because the books I'm currently reading take time to digest. I'd rather read them slowly and take time to think about them.

 

Oh wait, I did read 2012 Family Guide to Groceries Under $250 a Month. DawnM posted a link to it earlier this week. I don't really count it as a book though. It was a like reading several blog posts, and I finished it in about an hour.

 

Currently reading:

Jane Eyre - I'm reading this for book club. It's okay if I don't finish because I've read it enough times, but I would like it to be fresh in my mind when we have the meeting. This time I'm enjoying seeing Harry Potter in the early part of Jane's story, complete with Jack as Dudley.

 

Anna Karenina - I switched translations to one that got better reviews. So far I've only found subtle differences from the one I was reading before.

 

The God Delusion, Richard Dawkins - a library e-book loan. He's preaching to the choir so to speak, with me, but I'm finding it interesting nonetheless.

 

My Goodreads 2012 List

 

Books read in 2012 - in no particular order because I didn't join goodreads until a few months ago, and hadn't kept track of when I read each one

37. Midnight in Austenland, Shannon Hale

36. To Kill a Mockingbird (re-read it because I assigned it to ds and wanted it to be fresh in my mind).

35. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Mary Ann Shaffer

34. The Poet and the Murderer, Simon Worrall

33. Nearly Departed in Deadwood, Ann Charles

32. Swan Song, Lee Hanson (not the famous one of the same title, but a mystery set in the Orlando area)

31. The Broken Token, Chris Nickson

30. The Count of Monte Cristo

29. I'd Listen To My Parents If They'd Just Shut Up: What to Say and Not to Say When Parenting Teens, Anthony E. Wolf

28. Gone, Michael Grant

27. Murder in Mykonos, Jeffrey Siger

26. The Hanover Square Affair, Ashley Gardner

25. Murder Behind the Scenes: A Victorian Mystery, Isabella Macready

24. Uneasy Spirits: A Victorian San Francisco Mystery, Louisa Locke

23. Murder in a Mill Town, P.B. Ryan

22. The Sign of the Four (Sherlock Holmes)

21. Accomplished in Murder, Dara England

20. Maids of Misfortune, Louisa Locke

19. The Butterfly Forest, Tom Lowe

18. Chasing China: A Daughter's Quest for Truth, Kay Bratt

17. Immortal in Death, J.D. Robb

16. Rapture in Death, J.D. Robb

15. The Well Educated Mind, SWB

14. Organized Simplicity: The Clutter-Free Approach to Intentional Living, Tsh Oxenreider

13. Castle Cay, Lee Hanson

12. The Cater Street Hangman, Anne Perry

11. Callander Square, Anne Perry

10. Year of Wonders: A Novel of the Plague, Geraldine Brooks

9. Cold Cruel Winter, Chris Nickson

8. Watching Jeopardy, Norm Foster

7. To the Grave: A Genealogical Mystery, Steve Robinson

6. Florida Heat, Rainy Kirkland

5. A Regimental Murder, Ashley Gardner

4. The One Minute Organizer, Donna Smallin

3. In the Blood, Steve Robinson

2. The Hangman's Daughter, Oliver Potzsch

1. Etsy 101 Sell Your Crafts on Etsy, Steve Weber

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I was on vacation, and then started a new job, so I haven't been posting- or reading- much. Here is what we have done lately-

 

#47 The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers

#48 The Red Tent by Anita Diamant

#49 Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe. The library only had the annotated version, and I couldn't ignore the annotations for some reason, so it took me forever to read.

 

Readalouds

#16 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

 

DD10

#56 Call it Courage

#57 Disappearing Acts

#58 Bringing Nettie Back

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92. Wasp Factory by Iain Banks~fiction, horror, psychopath, coming of age. I read this because it was on the 1000 books you should read before you die list. It does have a compelling story and Banks draws you in by feeding you information a little at a time. Banks did a credible job but I'm not much for the horror genre. I spend too much time being grossed out and not enough enjoying the story.

 

91. True Grit by Charles Portis~western, coming of age, humor/irony. I loved this book. Perhaps I would have felt more moderately if I read it alone, but I read it aloud to dh in the car and we both loved it. Mattie Ross is one of my favorite female characters, so stubborn and used to adult responsibilities but so naive too. Perfect characterization. Very similar to the Coen brothers movie, but with more depth (of course) and more fun poking gentle fun at the characters. Looking forward to Portis' other books. **

 

90. The Penderwicks of Gardam Street by Jeanne Birdsall~children's fiction, sisters, adventure. I did not like this one as much as the original. It wasn't bad, exactly. It was just more silly and less charming I guess. Instead of just the 13 year old crush they added a Parent Trap situation and a somewhat forced cheating episode. Eh. More Rosalind. Less Batty and Hound. Jane and Skye's personalities moderated. I may read the next one but 13 year old Rosalind dating and 12 year old Sky falling for Jeffrey is getting into too much girl drama for me. I liked when the sister's had their own distinct personalities, not just useful hobbies.

 

 

*Top 10

**Best of the Year

 

89. Crossing by Jan Yoors~memoir, WWII, Resistance, Gypsies/Rom.

88. Darcy Takes a Wife by Linda Berdoll~fan fiction, romance, drama, Austen.

87. My French Kitchen by Joanne Harris~non-fiction, cookbook, French, family.

86. Swedish Cakes and Cookies, Melody Favish, translator~cooking, baking, Swedish/Scandinavian.

85. Doc by Mary Doria Russell~historical fiction, American plains, Doc Holliday.

84. Ender's Shadow by Orson Scott Card~science fiction, children, war, politics.

83. Fruit Trees in Small Places by Colby Elderman~gardening, fruit, pruning strategies.

82. Landscaping with Native Plants of Minnesota by Lynn Steiner~gardening, native plants. *

81. The Housekeeper and the Professor by Yoko Ogawa~mathematics, friendship, family, baseball.

79. Half Broke Horses by Jeannette ~memoir, biography, southwest

78. The Strange Affair of Spring Heeled Jack by Mark Hodder~science fiction, alternate history, Richard Burton, steampunk.

68. The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall~children's fiction, sisters, adventure. *

61. The Poisoner's Handbook by Deborah Blum~non-fiction, forensic science, chemistry, New York, Prohibition. *

59. The Green Mile by Stephen King~supernatural, prison, 1930s. *

51. North by Northanger by Carrie Bebis~Jane Austen, mystery

50. The Essential Garden Design Workbook by Rosemary Alexander~non-fiction, gardening, landscape design.

47. The Monster of Florence by Douglas Preston and Mario Spezi~memoir, Italy, criminal case, serial killer. *

41. Five Quarters of the Orange by Joanne Harris~fiction, France, WWII, food. *

36. Superfudge by Judy Blume~fiction, classic children's book.

30. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen~classic literature.

28. Divergent by Veronica Roth~youth fiction, dystopian.

23. Uncle Tungsten: Memories of a Chemical Boyhood by Oliver Sacks~non-fiction, memoir, history of chemistry.

18. A Thread of Grace by Mary Doria Russell~fiction, WWII **

16. Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card~classic science fiction, read aloud.

11. Case Histories by Kate Atkinson~mystery

7. The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman~non-fiction/medical

2. The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton~Fiction

1. The Children's Book by A.S. Byatt~Fiction

 

Working on:

Blood Meridian (McCarthy) ~I will finish this, I will.

The Zookeeper's Wife (Ackerman)

Delta Wedding (Welty)

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Ah. A new week of Book a Week. One of my favorite things about Sundays.

 

:iagree: :)

 

This week, I finished:

 

#46 - Songbird, by Lisa Samson. It was okay. Some loose threads at the end. Overall - just okay . . .

 

#47 - If You Ask Me (And Of Course You Won't), by Betty White. Quick; easy; fluff. But if you grew up seeing Betty White on Password or Mary Tyler Moore or even later on Golden Girls, it's a nice read - quick-easy-fluff . . .

 

Currently reading:

 

#48 - Redemption, by Karen Kingsbury with Gary Smalley. I've read a few of her books in years past and I know they're quick, easy. What I did NOT want was a series. Not till I started this book did I realize it is part of a series - AND that the characters sounded familiar - I have apparently read other books with these same characters, but a check of my book list over the past few years does not show any of the titles listed in this particular series. Oh well . . .

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I haven't posted in a week or two again. We are trying to find our groove with the new school year and older dd's new work schedule. I've been to busy or too sleepy to read. I finished #33 Enchanters' End Game by David Eddings this afternoon. Have I mention how much I love Eddings' writing :lol: I kept picturing this as a movie and who I would cast. I think I will take a break and read some of the other books sitting in my pile before coming back to the next installment, The Mallorean. I have some new Georgette Heyer books that are calling my name.

 

#33"Enchanters' End Game" by David Eddings

"Castle of Wizardry" by David Eddings

"A Proper Companion" by Candice Hern

"Magician's Gambit" by David Eddings

"Queen of Sorcery" by David Eddings

"Pawn of Prophecy" by David Eddings

"The Island of Doctor Moreau" by H. G. Wells

"Darcy's Voyage" by Kara Louise

"A Red Herring Without Mustard" by Alan Bradley

"Below Stairs" by Margaret Powell

"The Deception at Lyme" by Carrie Bebris

"The Intrigue at Highbury" by Carrie Bebris

"Faro's Daughter" by Georgette Heyer

"The Merchant of Venice" by William Shakespeare

"The Sword of Shanara" by Terry Brooks

"The Matters at Mansfield" by Carrie Bebris

"A Midsummer Night's Dream" by William Shakespeare

"Juliet" by Anne Fortier

"Romeo and Juliet" by William Shakespeare

"North by Northanger" by Carrie Bebris

"Yarn Harlot" by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee

"Suspense and Sensibility" by Carrie Bebris

"The Tempest" by William Shakespeare

"Cotillion" by Georgette Heyer

"Pride and Prescience" by Carrie Bebris

"Ophelia" by Lisa Klein

"Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead" by Tom Stoppard

"Hamlet" by William Shakespeare

"The Sisters Grimm" by Michael Buckley

"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" by J. K. Rowling

"The Lost Hero" by Rick Riordan

"Henry V" by William Shakespeare

"The Eyre Affair" by Jasper Fforde

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Does anybody know if it's possible to read this without owning a Kindle?

 

Yes, you can get it on the smartphone Kindle app or Kindle for PC.

 

#48 The Red Tent by Anita Diamant

 

Read that a few years ago for book club. It seems most people either loved it or hated it. I was in the first category.

 

 

 

#47 - If You Ask Me (And Of Course You Won't), by Betty White. Quick; easy; fluff. But if you grew up seeing Betty White on Password or Mary Tyler Moore or even later on Golden Girls, it's a nice read - quick-easy-fluff . . .

 

 

I listened to the audiobook and enjoyed it. Certainly fluff, but it was especially fun to hear Betty White herself reading it.

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Jane Eyre - I'm reading this for book club. It's okay if I don't finish because I've read it enough times, but I would like it to be fresh in my mind when we have the meeting. This time I'm enjoying seeing Harry Potter in the early part of Jane's story, complete with Jack as Dudley.

Although I haven't read Jane Eyre in years, I think your analogy is a good one. :)

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I listened to the audiobook and enjoyed it. Certainly fluff, but it was especially fun to hear Betty White herself reading it.

 

Yes, that would have been fun to hear her read her own writing!

 

I was surprised to find that I have a few minor things in common with her - pretty handwriting (so I'm told); enjoying my own company (being alone doesn't bother me; while some people are comfortable in their own skin, I am more comfortable in my own mind :D); piled-up stacks because I, too, love to write; the realization that I had better start paring some of those stacks down (tomorrow!). I just had to grin as I read those things. And that's about where the similarities end!

 

I was stunned to learn about Bruce (is that what she named the pen that you can talk to, then plug it into your computer and it will transcribe the notes)? Wow! Who knew! I mentioned it, all a-flutter and excited, to dh . . . he already knew about these pens. WHAT??? He KNEW? And he didn't tell me?! He asked whatever I would want or need one of those for? Sputter-sputter-spurt-spurt! I tried to tell him, to help him understand what an incredible thing this would be for me to have. I don't think he gets it . . . And to think, I had to learn about it in 90-year-old Betty White's book!

 

Fluff, yes. Enjoyable fluff? Of course!

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Let's talk about Penmarric for a bit. This novel by Susan Howatch employs her technique of utilizing different characters as narrators. In this book, there are five so that each of the differing voiced sections almost form five novellas. While the book is set in the late 19th/early 20th century, Howatch is in fact telling the tale of the Plantagenett king Henry II and his progeny. The first section is narrated by Mark (Henry). He annoyed me so much that I had to put the book down after finishing the section written from his perspective. Fortunately I went back to read the next two sections narrated by Janna (Eleanor of Aquitaine) and Adrian (Geoffrey of York). There is the potential to be bogged down by the next irritating narrator, Philip (Richard the Lionhearted) although I am completely intrigued by how Howatch uses a Cornish tin mine as the metaphor for Richard's crusade.

 

Bottom line: Howatch is a magnificent story teller and student of history. She is just such a darn good writer that when her characters are despicable, boy do we despise them!!

 

I adore her placing of history within other eras. It amazes me how everything new is old and everything old is new.

 

I'm always amazed at how she turns one character's story on it's head by the next character. You may despise the first, but their perspective is so encompassing that it is hard to break through until the next character tells you about it from their perspective.

 

I was so not impressed by Janna (or Mark FTR) Actually Phillip was possibly the most sympathetic character, IMO, even though he made some terrible choices.

 

And, you're right, the writing is magnificent and draws you in. I found Penmarric hard to put down. Cashelmara was too, but it was so appalling that I just wanted to get through it.

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I think I will take a break and read some of the other books sitting in my pile before coming back to the next installment, The Mallorean. I have some new Georgette Heyer books that are calling my name.

 

I was wondering where you were in the series :) I took a break, too, but might have to pick them up soon. I'm glad I don't have to wait for them to be written anymore like I did when they were coming out.

 

What Heyer is waiting for you? I think I've worked my way through my mom's stash ... I might have one or two left to read.

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I finished a plays kick and also finished a medieval poems book, but mostly I'm reading a giant history book that's taking a long time.

 

The Owl and the Nightingale

She Stoops to Conquer

Helen

 

She Stoops to Conquer is one of my favorite comedic plays, but I am rather partial to comedies of manners. Fun to see on stage too!

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I adore her placing of history within other eras. It amazes me how everything new is old and everything old is new. [\B]

 

I'm always amazed at how she turns one character's story on it's head by the next character. You may despise the first, but their perspective is so encompassing that it is hard to break through until the next character tells you about it from their perspective.

 

I was so not impressed by Janna (or Mark FTR) Actually Phillip was possibly the most sympathetic character, IMO, even though he made some terrible choices.

 

And, you're right, the writing is magnificent and draws you in. I found Penmarric hard to put down. Cashelmara was too, but it was so appalling that I just wanted to get through it.

 

Howatch makes us realize that these are neither the best nor worst of times. It is all a rerun.

 

Janna did not win me over but I found that I had more sympathy for her than Mark. Howatch seems drawn to these men of means and power--not at all likeable guys.

 

Did you like how Philip shows up at Rose's graveside with a red rose? This led me on a mega rabbit trail as I brushed up on the much later Wars of the Roses. No wonder it takes me forever to finish a Howatch book. I keep Googling events and people.

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Did you like how Philip shows up at Rose's graveside with a red rose? This led me on a mega rabbit trail as I brushed up on the much later Wars of the Roses. No wonder it takes me forever to finish a Howatch book. I keep Googling events and people.

 

I didn't notice even a little bit. No wonder I plow through the books, I'm not educated enough to catch those allusions.

 

Off to search on The War of the Roses ...

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Atonement - 1 Star - boring and thoroughly disappointed

 

9780099429791.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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Although I haven't read Jane Eyre in years, I think your analogy is a good one. :)

 

I can't take credit for coming up with it. I don't remember where I read it, but it was either Harry Potter's Bookshelf or Repotting Harry Potter. I'm reading Jane Eyre for the first time since I read those books, and now I clearly see it.

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Current: Little Children. Tom Perrotta's thirty-ish parents of young children are a varied and surprising bunch. There's Todd, the handsome stay-at-home dad dubbed "The Prom King" by the moms of the playground; Sarah, a lapsed feminist with a bisexual past, who seems to have stumbled into a traditional marriage; Richard, Sarah's husband, who has found himself more and more involved with a fantasy life on the internet than with the flesh and blood in his own house; and Mary Ann, who thinks she has it all figured out, down to scheduling a weekly roll in the hay with her husband, every Tuesday at 9pm. They all raise their kids in the kind of sleepy American suburb where nothing ever seems to happen-at least until one eventful summer, when a convicted child molester moves back to town, and two restless parents begin an affair that goes further than either of them could have imagined. Unexpectedly suspenseful, but written with all the fluency and dark humor of Perrotta's previous novels, Little Children exposes the adult dramas unfolding amidst the swingsets and slides of an ordinary American playground.

 

Also completed this week: The Devil Wears Prada. Welcome to the dollhouse, baby! When aspiring journalist Andrea first sets foot in the plush Manhattan offices of Runway she knows nothing. She's never heard of the world's most fashionable magazine, or its feared and fawned-over editor, Miranda Priestly. But she's going to be Miranda's assistant, a job millions of girls would die for. A year later, she knows altogether too much: That it's a sacking offence to wear anything lower than a three-inch heel to work. But that there's always a fresh pair of Manolos for you in the accessories cupboard. That Miranda believes Hermes scarves are disposable, and you must keep a life-time supply on hand at all times. That eight stone is fat. That you can charge cars, manicures, anything at all to the Runway account, but you must never, ever, leave your desk, or let Miranda's coffee get cold. And that at 3 a.m. on a Sunday, when your boyfriend's dumping you because you're always at work, and your best friend's just been arrested, if Miranda phones, you jump. Most of all, Andrea knows that Miranda is a monster who makes Cruella de Vil look like a fluffy bunny. But also that this is her big break, and it's going to be worth it in the end. Isn't it?

 

and The Good Sister, by Drusilla Campbell. Roxanne Callahan has always been her younger sister's caretaker. Now married, her happiness is threatened when beautiful and emotionally unstable Simone, suffering from crippling postpartum depression, commits an unforgivable crime for which Roxanne comes to believe she is partially responsible. In the glare of national media attention brought on her sister, Roxanne fights to hold her marriage together as she is drawn back into the pain of her troubled past and relives the fraught relationship she and Simone shared with their narcissistic mother. At the same time, only she can help Simone's nine year old daughter, Merell, make sense of the family's tragedy. Cathartic, lyrical, and unflinchingly honest, THE GOOD SISTER is a novel of four generations of women struggling to overcome a legacy of violence, lies and secrecy, ultimately finding strength and courage in their love for each other.

 

 

COMPLETE

 

1. Envy, by J.R. Ward (Fallen Angels series)

 

2. Kiss of the Highlander, by Karen Marie Moning (Highlander series)

 

3. The Ramayana, A Shortened Modern Prose Version of the Indian Epic, by R.K. Narayan (with my daughter for school reading)

 

4. Dark Highlander, by Karen Marie Moning (Highlander series)

 

5. The Immortal Highlander, by Karen Marie Moning (Highlander series)

 

6. Spell of the Highlander, by Karen Marie Moning (Highlander series)

 

7. 11/22/63, by Stephen King

 

8. The Traveler, by John Twelve Hawks (Fourth Realm Trilogy, Book 1)

 

9. Into the Dreaming, by Karen Marie Moning (Highlander series)

 

10. A Judgement In Stone, by Ruth Rendel

 

11. The Dark River, by John Twelve Hawks (Fourth Realm Trilogy, Book 2)

 

12. The Golden City, by John Twelve Hawks (Fourth Realm Trilogy, Book 3)

 

13. Forbidden Pleasure, by Lora Leigh

 

14. Relic, by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

 

15. House Rules, by Jodi Picoult

 

16. Midwives, by Chris Bohjalian

 

17. Wind Through the Keyhole, by Stephen King

 

18. The High Flyer, by Susan Howatch.

 

19. Daughter of the Blood, by Anne Bishop (The Black Jewels Trilogy, Book 1)

 

20. Heir to the Shadows, by Anne Bishop (The Black Jewels Trilogy, Book 2)

 

21. The Host, by Stephenie Meyer

 

22. Queen of the Darkness, by Anne Bishop (The Black Jewels Trilogy, Book 3)

 

23. The Invisible Ring, by Anne Bishop (The Black Jewels series)

 

24. Fifty Shades of Grey, by E.L. James

 

25. Fifty Shades Darker, by E.L. James

 

26. Fifty Shades Freed, by E.L. James

 

27. Dreams Made Flesh, by Anne Bishop (The Black Jewels series)

 

28. Tangled Webs, by Anne Bishop (The Black Jewels series)

 

29. Goodnight Nobody, by Jennifer Weiner

 

30. Kiss the Dead, by Laurell K. Hamilton (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter series)

 

31. The Shadow Queen, by Anne Bishop (The Black Jewels series)

 

32. The Read-Aloud Handbook, by Jim Trelease

 

33. Ahab's Wife, by Sena Jeter Naslund

 

34. Shalador's Queen, by Anne Bishop (The Black Jewels series)

 

35. Sebastian, by Anne Bishop (Ephemera, Book 1)

 

36. The Devil Wears Prada, by Lauren Weisberger

 

37. The Good Sister, by Drusilla Campbell

CURRENT

 

38. The Neverending Story, by Michael Ende, translated by Ralph Manheim, aloud to my son.

 

39. Smiles to Go, by Jerry Spinelli, aloud with my daughter.

 

40. Little Children, by Tom Perrotta

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Summer reading. The first 2 titles are from a summer book club I started for middle school girls. My children and I have been reading the HP series for the first time. My daughter is done and my 11yos is right behind me. We are having SO MUCH FUN with this series!!

 

34. Story of the Treasure Seekers

 

35. Swiss Family Robinson

 

36. Emma, Jane Austen

 

37. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

 

38. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secret

 

39. Harry Potter and Prisoner of Azkaban

 

40. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

 

41. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

 

42. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

 

43. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - now!!

Plan on reading straight through all Labor day and all night :)

 

Waiting at the library:

Tales of the Beedle Bard

Harry a History, Melissa Anelli

The Gospel According to Harry Potter, Connie Neal

Edited by LNC
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I think I'm up to 39 books so far.

 

I just finished The Summer of Katya, which is my book club's pick for the month. I loved the narrative voice and the setting. The plot reminded me of The Thirteenth Tale and The Forgotten Garden.

 

Before that I read American Grace, about religion and politics in America. The subject is fascinating, and I loved that so much of the book was spent analyzing data. (I also knew one of the authors in college, so I might be a bit biased.) It seemed a good read for this election season.

 

Next up is The Snoring Bird, which DH has been pestering me to read.

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Current: Little Children. Tom Perrotta's thirty-ish parents of young children are a varied and surprising bunch. There's Todd, the handsome stay-at-home dad dubbed "The Prom King" by the moms of the playground; Sarah, a lapsed feminist with a bisexual past, who seems to have stumbled into a traditional marriage; Richard, Sarah's husband, who has found himself more and more involved with a fantasy life on the internet than with the flesh and blood in his own house; and Mary Ann, who thinks she has it all figured out, down to scheduling a weekly roll in the hay with her husband, every Tuesday at 9pm. They all raise their kids in the kind of sleepy American suburb where nothing ever seems to happen-at least until one eventful summer, when a convicted child molester moves back to town, and two restless parents begin an affair that goes further than either of them could have imagined. Unexpectedly suspenseful, but written with all the fluency and dark humor of Perrotta's previous novels, Little Children exposes the adult dramas unfolding amidst the swingsets and slides of an ordinary American playground.

 

Also completed this week: The Devil Wears Prada. Welcome to the dollhouse, baby! When aspiring journalist Andrea first sets foot in the plush Manhattan offices of Runway she knows nothing. She's never heard of the world's most fashionable magazine, or its feared and fawned-over editor, Miranda Priestly. But she's going to be Miranda's assistant, a job millions of girls would die for. A year later, she knows altogether too much: That it's a sacking offence to wear anything lower than a three-inch heel to work. But that there's always a fresh pair of Manolos for you in the accessories cupboard. That Miranda believes Hermes scarves are disposable, and you must keep a life-time supply on hand at all times. That eight stone is fat. That you can charge cars, manicures, anything at all to the Runway account, but you must never, ever, leave your desk, or let Miranda's coffee get cold. And that at 3 a.m. on a Sunday, when your boyfriend's dumping you because you're always at work, and your best friend's just been arrested, if Miranda phones, you jump. Most of all, Andrea knows that Miranda is a monster who makes Cruella de Vil look like a fluffy bunny. But also that this is her big break, and it's going to be worth it in the end. Isn't it?

 

and The Good Sister, by Drusilla Campbell. Roxanne Callahan has always been her younger sister's caretaker. Now married, her happiness is threatened when beautiful and emotionally unstable Simone, suffering from crippling postpartum depression, commits an unforgivable crime for which Roxanne comes to believe she is partially responsible. In the glare of national media attention brought on her sister, Roxanne fights to hold her marriage together as she is drawn back into the pain of her troubled past and relives the fraught relationship she and Simone shared with their narcissistic mother. At the same time, only she can help Simone's nine year old daughter, Merell, make sense of the family's tragedy. Cathartic, lyrical, and unflinchingly honest, THE GOOD SISTER is a novel of four generations of women struggling to overcome a legacy of violence, lies and secrecy, ultimately finding strength and courage in their love for each other.

 

 

 

Those descriptions make all those books sound really intense. How are you enjoying them?

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What did you think? Have you seen the movie? If so, do you think it would take away from the book by having seen the movie first?

 

I saw the movie first and then read the book. This is one of those rare cases where the movie is better. Meryl Streep's character is all caricature in the book. The bitterness is unmuted.

 

I enjoyed the book well enough, but don't expect it to be as good as the movie.

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I read Lttle Brother by Cory Doctorow, a book dd, 17, brought home (she told me it was stupid, but the more she didn't want me to read it, the more I wanted to--what, am I turning into a teen??? It wasn't great after all, but still an intriguing title.) This week I'm reading a fluffier book by Alexander McCall Smith called A Conspiracy of Friends, which I like a bit better than the last one in that series. It's nothing to run out & buy and not as good at the First Ladies' Detective Agency books, but I need something not too riveting as we go back to school tomorrow (ds is still homeschooling.)

 

Dd, 14, read Genesis, which we talked about last week and the week before. She said it was stupid at one point, but then really wanted to finish it before bed the other night, so I think she liked it better than she claimes.

 

39. Life Between the Keys: the (Mis)Adventures of the Five Browns

40. Summer at Tiffany

41. Thursday’s Child

42. Genesis

43. Little Brother by Cory Doctorow

 

 

I'm still working on All Creatures and enjoying it but it's not a fast read because there's no plot dragging you on to see how it ends. Instead it's just nice stories about the day in the life of this country vet.

 

 

Right. I read that in 2011 & enjoyed it, but I read a chapter a week while dd was in a writing class. I'm glad I did, because the book is no longer there & I'd have never read it at home.

 

Following a suggestion from Karin, I read a mystery by Arnaldur Indridason, Silence of the Grave (#41). This translation from the Icelandic is rivetting but the book is far from a cozy mystery! The scenes of spousal abuse are brutal. Nonetheless I was drawn into this well paced but dark Nordic tale.

 

 

Hmm, I forgot the darkness. I wonder if this is the very same title of his that I read, as it is a series. At any rate, it is a mystery & well written, even if not a cozy mystery. However, some of the books you have read aren't so cozy, either, I don't think. Didn't I read a couple of espionage books from WWI or WWII that you recommended? I can't think of the author's name, but he wrote well. I think that was in 2010 & I didn't keep a list back then.

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Dd, 14, read Genesis, which we talked about last week and the week before. She said it was stupid at one point, but then really wanted to finish it before bed the other night, so I think she liked it better than she claimes.

 

Great choice for a fourteen year old!

 

 

Hmm, I forgot the darkness. I wonder if this is the very same title of his that I read, as it is a series. At any rate, it is a mystery & well written, even if not a cozy mystery. However, some of the books you have read aren't so cozy, either, I don't think. Didn't I read a couple of espionage books from WWI or WWII that you recommended? I can't think of the author's name, but he wrote well. I think that was in 2010 & I didn't keep a list back then.

 

Cozy is not a requirement for me but I mention it in case any of our gentle readers shy away from "edgy" mysteries. Admittedly every Nordic mystery that I have read is rather dark--seems to come with the territory.

 

Alan Furst is the WWII espionage author. He has a new book out--haven't read it yet.

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What did you think? Have you seen the movie? If so, do you think it would take away from the book by having seen the movie first?

 

I enjoyed the book, it was a quick entertaining read. I have actually not seen the movie but will probably check it out at some point now that I've read the book and see that the movie has at least one good review here!

 

Those descriptions make all those books sound really intense. How are you enjoying them?

 

The Good Sister was a bit on the intense side but I enjoyed the book. The author explains at the end her own childhood experiences with her mother's post-partum depression so I guess that was a topic that had a lot of meaning for her.

 

The Devil Wears Prada was an entertaining read, not intense, and Little Children has dark themes but manages to be more humorous (if you like dark humor) than intense, for the most part!

 

I think I forgot to put on my list that I also read The Lost Boy, the sequel to A Child Called It, by David Pelzer. I'd read A Child Called It years ago and came across the sequel not long ago at a used book sale and just got around to reading it. That was definitely intense and hard to read. As you all probably already know, the author went through horrible abuse and neglect in his childhood by his own mother and now as an adult he has written a series of books. In the first, he describes his childhood and the abuse, and in the second, he describes what his teen years were like after being rescued from home and living in the foster care system and still being confronted from time to time with his mother and the rest of his family and having mixed feelings about them. Very sad!

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Last week I finally got around to 88. Catching Fire and 89. Mockingjay. I wasn't disappointed, and they were quick reads.

 

For my Coursera class I read 90. The Island of Doctor Moreau -- I can't believe I never read this before! I will have to make time for more H.G. Wells that I have overlooked.

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After two read aloud flops DD and I are both engrossed in Carry on, Mr Bowditch. Who knew we'd love nautical history so much! Last night I found myself telling DH all about the history of the terms "log" and "knots" and tonight DD got upset with me for only reading one chapter. That's the sign of a good book.

 

I

I think I forgot to put on my list that I also read The Lost Boy, the sequel to A Child Called It, by David Pelzer. I'd read A Child Called It years ago and came across the sequel not long ago at a used book sale and just got around to reading it. That was definitely intense and hard to read. As you all probably already know, the author went through horrible abuse and neglect in his childhood by his own mother and now as an adult he has written a series of books. In the first, he describes his childhood and the abuse, and in the second, he describes what his teen years were like after being rescued from home and living in the foster care system and still being confronted from time to time with his mother and the rest of his family and having mixed feelings about them. Very sad!

 

I tried A Child Called It in high school and couldn't get through it. It was just too much for me back then. Sometimes I contemplate giving it another go but I think that now that I've got a child of my own it would be even worse. Of course, I tend to be sensitive about things. I'm one of the gals mentioned earlier who really likes cozy mysteries.

 

I haven't read much this week because I've been digging rocks out of my garden, but I did finish reading The Secret Garden to dd, and ds actually listened to some!

 

Rosie

 

How did I miss commenting on this earlier?!?! One of my favorite books of all times is The Secret Garden. Had you read it before? Did you DD love it? What are you going to read to her next?

Edited by aggieamy
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How did I miss commenting on this earlier?!?! One of my favorite books of all times is The Secret Garden. Had you read it before? Did you DD love it? What are you going to read to her next?

 

Oh yes, I've read it many times. :) Dd had listened to the unabridged audiobook once before and I found an abridged tape at an op shop so we listened to that a million or so times until ds broke it. :glare: I think she must have liked it because she'd never commented on a character from a book before. The weather had been rotten in the morning so I'd read several chapters, then in the afternoon it cheered up so we went out to dig rocks out of the garden and she asked after Mary just as she asks after various relatives. I was very pleased! Perhaps she would do that more if I could provide the same amount of repetition with other stories, but that's a bit difficult at present.

 

Now we're reading some of Enid Blyton's books about 'Naughty Amelia Jane.' We get through those very quickly and I'm not sure what will be next. I wanted to try the 'Wind in the Willows' but their dad has made off with it. Maybe 'Anne of Green Gables' or 'What Katy Did' since they are at the top of the piles I have here waiting their turn. Maybe 'Blinky Bill?' We ought to pay some attention to our own classics sometimes. :tongue_smilie:

 

Rosie

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