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Book a Week 2016 - BW52 - 2016 it's a wrap!


Robin M
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Stacia.......I just tried to quote your post and edit a bit. Absolute disaster. I'm glad you're feeling better! Also glad you are enjoying By Gaslight but no one wants to smell Victorian London. It's a big deal at museums currently and it's awful, stomach turning. We have to skip those exhibits which is sad because they always sound so interesting but the smell does us in.

 

I did finish my last book of the year. Longer Bodies by Gladys Mitchell. It just wasn't the book for me, parts were good fun but the rest was sort of oddly confusing. Unfortunately I think I am giving up on reading the Mrs. Bradley series for now. I still have a couple tv episodes that I haven't watched, planning to savor those.

 

Happy New Year everyone!!!!!

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Gee thanks you two. I just added more books to my TR list. :)

 

I didn't like my final number - 81 just isn't pretty. Yesterday I started reading A Quiet Life in the Country, which I think was mentioned here (Sadie? And btw, Happy New Year to you and Rose!) I'm almost done with it and will finish it this afternoon so I can end with an even number. My final count will be 82 books.

 

I can't start anything that I want to count for bingo, so I'm not sure what I'll read, but I know I'll read more today. I downloaded a few samples to my Kindle, so maybe I'll finish out the year reading samples and deciding if they should go on my TR list. 

 

81 is such a great number. 

 

8+1 = 9

 

and

 

9*9 = 81

 

and

 

3*3*3*3=81

 

See how cool it is!

 

Stacia.......I just tried to quote your post and edit a bit. Absolute disaster. I'm glad you're feeling better! Also glad you are enjoying By Gaslight but no one wants to smell Victorian London. It's a big deal at museums currently and it's awful, stomach turning. We have to skip those exhibits which is sad because they always sound so interesting but the smell does us in.

 

I did finish my last book of the year. Longer Bodies by Gladys Mitchell. It just wasn't the book for me, parts were good fun but the rest was sort of oddly confusing. Unfortunately I think I am giving up on reading the Mrs. Bradley series for now. I still have a couple tv episodes that I haven't watched, planning to savor those.

 

Happy New Year everyone!!!!!

 

I trying to keep track of the time so I can get on here and wish you a happy New Year right at midnight your time.  Your midnight is about when people will start showing up at my house for dinner though so we'll see how well I can stay focused.  :)

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I'm excited because I have both By Gaslight and News of the World on hold, along with 18 other things. Glad to hear they are both good!

 

Oh yes, Archipelago. i will have to check that out. I was pleasantly surprised that so many of the And Other Stories books were at my library, but I am also a big fan of supporting the little guys. And it's amazing to realize that there is a whole world of books out there - books in translation, in particular - that you don't hear about if you don't venture off the beaten path. I appreciate hearing about so many of them on this thread.

 

ETA: Just found a book for my Insects in the Title square!!!  :lol:

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Two more to end the year.


 


63.  "Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder" by Scott Barbour.


 


62. "Eyes to See" by Ardeth G. Kapp (LDS).


 


61. "Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Gordon B. Hinckley" (LDS).


60. "If Life Were Easy, It Wouldn't Be Hard" by Sheri Dew (LDS).


59. "Beginning of Better Days" by Sheri Dew and Virginia H. Pearce (LDS).


58. "Covenant Keepers" by Wendy Watson Nelson (LDS).


57. "Accomplishing the Impossible" by Russell M. Nelson (LDS).


56. "Promptings or Me?" by Kevin Hinckley (LDS).


55. "God Wants a Powerful People" by Sheri Dew (LDS).


54. "Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Howard W. Hunter" (LDS).


53. "Women and the Priesthood" by Sheri Dew (LDS).


52. "The Terrorist's Son: A Story of Choice" by Zak Ebrahim with Jeff Giles.


51. "Touching the Void: The True Story of One Man's Miraculous Survival" by Joe Simpson.


50. "Why We Write About Ourselves: Twenty Memoirists on Why They Expose Themselves (and Others) in the name of Literature" ed. by Meredith Maran.


49. "Write Your Memoir: The soul work telling your story" by Dr. Allan G. Hunter.


48.  "Shimmering Images: A Handy Little Guide to Writing Memoir" by Lisa Dale Norton.


47. "The Story of Science" by Susan Wise Bauer


46. "The Kids' Guide to Staying Awesome and in Control" by Lauren Brukner. 


45. "Freaks, Geeks & Asperger Syndrome" by Luke Jackson.


44.  "Seven Miracles That Saved America" by Chris Stewart and Ted Stewart (LDS). 


43. "The Reading Promise: My Father and the Books We Shared" by Alice Ozma.


42. "Unsolved Mysteries of American History" by Paul Aron.


41. "The Out-of-Sync Child Grows Up" by Carol Stock Kranowitz. 


40. "Look Me in the Eye: my life with asperger's" by John Elder Robison.


39. "The Politically Incorrect Guide to American History" by Thomas E. Woods.


38. "A Buffet of Sensory Interventions: Solutions for Middle and High School Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders" by Susan Culp. 


37. "Thinking in Pictures" by Temple Grandin.


36. "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child" by Jack Thorne, et al


35. "The Wizard of Oz" by Frank Baum. 


34. "Adventures of Tom Sawyer" by Mark Twain.  (We listened as we traveled in Missouri!)


33. "Blue Fairy Book" by Andrew Lang.


32. "Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing" by Judy Blume.


31. "Greenwich" by Susan Cooper.


30. "Dark is Rising" by Susan Cooper.


29. "Clash of Cultures" by Christopher and James Lincoln Collier.


28. "The Story of US: First Americans" by Joy Hakim.


27. "Freak the Mighty" by Rodman Philbrick. 


26. "The Mouse and the Motorcycle" by Beverly Cleary.


25."Caddie Woodlawn" by Carol Ryrie Brink.


24. "Frightful's Mountain" by Jean Craighead George.


23.  "The Power of Vulnerability" by Brene Brown.


22.  "My side of the Mountain" by Jean Craighead George.


21. "Cheaper By the Dozen" by Frank Butler Gilbreth, Jr. and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey.


20. "Murder on the Ballarat Train" by Kerry Greenwood.


19. "Over See, Under Stone" by Susan Cooper


18. "Sing Down the Moon" by Scott O'Dell.


17. "Soft Rain" by Cornelia Cornelissen.


16. "The Collapse of Parenting" by Leonard Sax.


15. ""Flying Too High: A Phyrne Fisher Mystery" by Kerry Greenwood.


14. "Cocaine Blues: A Phyrne Fisher Mystery" by Kerry Greenwood.


13. "Let It Go" by Chris Williams


12. "Writing From Personal Experience" by Nancy Davidoff Kelton.


11. "Writing the Memoir" by Judith Barrington.


10.  "Boys Adrift" by Leonard Sax.


9. "Girls on the Edge" by Leonard Sax.  


8. "Christ and the Inner Life" by Truman G. Madsen. (LDS)  


7. "Gaze into Heaven" by Marlene Bateman Sullivan. (LDS)


6. "To Heaven and Back" by Mary C. Neal, MD.


5. "When Will the Heaven Begin?" by Ally Breedlove.


4. "Four" by Virginia Roth.


3. "Allegiant" by Virgina Roth.


2. " Insurgent" by Virginia Roth.


1. "Divergent" by Virginia Roth.


 

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Stacia.......I just tried to quote your post and edit a bit. Absolute disaster. I'm glad you're feeling better! Also glad you are enjoying By Gaslight but no one wants to smell Victorian London. It's a big deal at museums currently and it's awful, stomach turning. We have to skip those exhibits which is sad because they always sound so interesting but the smell does us in.

 

Oh yeah. I can totally get that. I would probably have to skip those exhibits. I have an oversensitive sense of smell (my family jokes that I'm a bloodhound).

 

In By Gaslight, London of 1885 is NOT painted in a pretty way. It's ugly, dirty, smelly, etc.... But, so, so, so well-drawn. I feel like I'm there but also am so glad I'm not actually feeling it with all my senses, kwim?

 

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I just finished The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman.  Quite like a morality play, I'm conflicted as to the outcome.  One reason I don't like literary reads is you don't always get a happy or satisfying ending.   Which puts me at an even number of 102 for the end of the year.

 

Speaking of even numbers, next year is an odd number as well as a prime number so the challenge is ending on an odd prime number.   :lol:

 

 

 

:grouphug:  and  :wub:    to all and Happy New Year! 

 

Whew! The next odd prime past my goal is . . . 241.  So that should be doable!!

 

Robin, I want to add my voice to the warm thank you for curating this amazing space. I know it is a ton of work, and you do it so gracefully. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!  :grouphug:  :001_wub:

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Agatha Christie has lots of books with prime numbers in the title ... and I've read all those books.  Hmmm.  At least that might be helpful to someone else.  Back to searching!  Right now I'm thinking Graham Greene's The Third Man

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Added one more book to my list for 2016 - News of the World by Paulette Giles - and thoroughly enjoyed it! That makes 54 total for the year.

 

I've been enjoying reading through the thread this week (as usual!) and have been thinking what a lovely group this is and how much I am looking forward to all the book talk for next year. I've gotten some great suggestions from our group here and want to say thank you and Happy New Year to everyone!

 

That looks good, so I added yet another book to my TR list.  I wonder if I can make it through the last few hours of 2016 without making that list any bigger.  :lol:  Fortunately, I don't feel like I need to get through all of these new additions in the coming year. 

 

I agree with both of your comments.

 

Yes, this is a lovely group. A few years ago I decided to leave WTM when things on the chat board were getting a bit contentious yet I couldn't tear myself away. I thought the best thing for me to do was leave, and  the only thing I'd really miss was BaW. I figured I'd just replace it with some Goodreads groups. It didn't work. There isn't anything like these threads, no online groups, and not even my IRL book club. I had to come back because of this group. 

 

Yes, you will always find suggestions for good books here. If I were to go through the books I've read since I first started participating in this thread as well as the ones on my TR list, I would be surprised if fewer than 1/3 (at least) came from people here.  

 

Happy New Year to all!  :party:  :cheers2:  :001_wub:  :wub:

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img_9296.jpg?w=640&h=467

 

Happy New Year, BaWers! Thank you for being here. Robin, thank you for hosting. Here's my annual wrap-up.

 

In 2016, I completed 123 books. Of course, this unrepentantly promiscuous reader could easily add another 250-plus titles of books left in various stages of “undress,†but only cover-to-covers appear on my annual list. Although I completed 16 fewer books this year, I read the same number of fiction titles (excluding graphic works) as last year: 57. Of the remaining 66 books, 15 were plays; 18 were non-fiction books; and 33 were graphic fiction.

 

Here are a few more numbers:

 

Number of plays read that were attributed to Shakespeare: 10 (of which 5 were rereads)

Total number of rereads: 13

Number of books read in 2016 that were published in 2016: 46 (of which 16 were novels)

Best fiction read in 2016:

â–  A Good School (Richard Yates; 1978. Fiction.)

â–  The Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047 (Lionel Shriver; 2016. Fiction.)

â–  The Elementals (Michael McDowell; 1981. Fiction.)

â–  The Shawl (Cynthia Ozick; 1990. Fiction.)

â–  My Name Is Lucy Barton (Elizabeth Strout; 2016. Fiction.)

Honorable mention:

â–  The Last Policeman (Ben Winters; 2013. Fiction.)

■ The Nest (Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney; 2016. Fiction.)

â–  The Girls (Emma Cline; 2016. Fiction.)

 

Best plays read in 2016:

â–  Arcadia (Tom Stoppard; 1993. Drama.)

â–  The Life of Galileo (Bertolt Brecht; 1940. (Trans. John Willett; 1994.) Drama.)

 

Most compelling non-fiction read in 2016:

■ One of Us: The Story of a Massacre in Norway — and Its Aftermath (Åsne Seierstad; 2015. Non-fiction.)

â–  Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife (Barbara Bradley Hagerty; 2016. Non-fiction.)

â–  Neighbors (Jan T. Gross; 2001. Non-fiction.)

Honorable mention:

■ A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy (Sue Klebold; 2016. Non-fiction.)

â–  Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town (Jon Krakauer; 2015. Non-fiction.)

 

Best graphic fiction read in 2016:

â–  Fell, Volume 1, Feral City (Warren Ellis; 2007. Graphic fiction.)

â–  The Silence of Our Friends (Mark Long; 2012. Graphic fiction.)

 

Best reread:

â–  Heart of Darkness (Joseph Conrad; 1899. Fiction.)

Honorable mention:

â–  The Sparrow (Mary Doria Russell; 1996. Fiction.)

 

Random remarks:

◠Repeating this bit from one of my summer book posts: A Good School was, quite possibly, the best book I’ve read this year — which may have been the same thing I said about Richard Yates’ Revolutionary Road eight years ago. In “The Lost World of Richard Yates†(Boston Review, October/November 1999), Stewart O’Nan wrote:

 

 

Once the most vaunted of authors–praised by Styron and Vonnegut and Robert Stone as the voice of a generation–he seems now to belong to that august yet sad category, the writer’s writer. Andre Dubus, who was his student at Iowa, revered him, as does Tobias Wolff, and the jackets of Yates’s books are adorned with quotes by the likes of Tennessee Williams and Dorothy Parker, Ann Beattie and Gina Berriault. When authors talk his name pops up as the American writer we wish more people would read, just as Cormac McCarthy’s used to. In the acknowledgments section of his novellas, Women With Men, Richard Ford makes it plain: “I wish to record my debt of gratitude to the stories and novels of Richard Yates, a writer too little appreciated.â€

With his insightful and ranging appreciation, O’Nan — also a writer too little appreciated (if you are not familiar with his work, begin with A Prayer for the Dying and Last Night at the Lobster) — all but ensured that Yates would be revisited: Many of Yates’ books are, of course, back in print, and his “painful and sad†first novel received big-screen treatment in 2008. In fact, I finally saw the film over the summer, which led to the mentally intoned assertion, “The book was better,†and to the shelves, where several Yates titles awaited me. By the way, fans of John Williams’ Stoner will also appreciate A Good School.

 

â— The Elementals deserves a much wider audience.

 

â— My birthday wish is Fell, Volume 2.

 

◠In this “Year of the House Sparrow,†I cannot imagine how I managed not to read Chris Chester’s Providence of a Sparrow: Lessons from a Life Gone to the Birds, which languished on my TBR pile all. year. long. (That’s not the worst of the indignity heaped upon it: I purchased the book — Shhhh! — nearly nine years ago.)

 

◠Books like the brilliantly reported One of Us: The Story of a Massacre in Norway — and Its Aftermath (Åsne Seierstad, 2015) and the upliftingly informative Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife (Barbara Bradley Hagerty, 2016) are the reason I read. I think I must read more non-fiction this coming year. It’s that simple.

 

â— Speaking of Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife, here are a few passages I have pressed into my commonplace book:

 

 

p. 219

You may be thinking, Who in midlife has the time for this? To which I say: Maybe you don’t now, but you will probably at some point. And how will you spend it? Frittering away the time? Or in full-throated pursuit of a passion? Even if you have full-time work and children at home, as many people in midlife do, you can still take small steps to punctuate the days and weeks with a hobby that gives you a little zing every time you think of it.

 

p. 235

Middle age makes no exclusive claim to stress, trauma, and the need for resilience. People break bones, lose their jobs, develop cancer at all points in their lives. But it seems that for many of us, troubles start to cluster in midlife: You are more likely to lose a parent or spouse after forty, more likely to be diagnosed with cancer after forty-five, and much more likely to be replaced by a younger, cheaper, more tech-savvy employee after fifty. I never gave much thought to rebounding from setbacks in my twenties and thirties because life was ascendant and setbacks were rare. Now I feel as if I spend half my time trying to plug leaks in the dam. Happily, the research indicates, I may be better equipped because I have lived for five and half decades.

Edited by M--
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I read the first book, didn't finish, tried again, didn't finish, tried again, finished then reread it to catch all the things I missed the first time. I liked the re-read better than the initial read. There's so many characters, storylines, settings, and themes and the world is so foreign that I couldn't absorb it all at once.

 

I tried the second book, I really did. I have a visceral reaction to leaving a book unfinished. But... I just couldn't do it. I got half way through when it was due back at the library and I haven't felt an urge to pick it up since. To me, it was like an entirely new series. The effort it took to get up on the knowledge curve for both books wasn't worth the few nuggets of interesting story.

 

From other reviewers, I've heard the third book is when things really pick up.

 

One day, maybe, I might return to the series. It's clear there's fascinating worldbuilding, and the speed with which Erikson completed the books is amazing. But I have a really long TBR list and in my opinion, the work involved for an initial read wasn't worth the enjoyment.

 

I think a re-read will be much easier and more enjoyable.

 

I get it! It's really unfortunate that Erikson chose to have completely different characters and setting for the second book in the series. It's like a completely new start and a difficult one at that.

 

Book 2 is also very, very dark and gutwrenching. I'm not one to cry over books, but I was completely devastated at the end of this book. I don't think I have ever been so angry at a book before. Actually, book 2 was the reason I decided to do a reread of Wheel of Time before doing a reread of Malazan. I had abandoned Wheel of Time at book 6 or 7 or so and wanted to restart that again too. After finishing WoT this summer I even contemplated rereading Malazan and just skipping book 2 :lol: .

 

While reading Leigh Butler's Reread of WoT I discovered that I missed quite a bit while reading WoT, so I decided to check out the reading groups of Malazan on goodreads for book 1 and 2, but to my surprise no new things came up. Maybe because Erikson forces you to think, while Jordan let's you relax, I don't know.

 

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Unfortunately, the group fighting against the big bad guys are a group of 16 yr olds. It didn't help my mindset last night what with my eldest who turns 16 in less than a month. I kept picturing him in a war zone, sustaining injuries, and making the choices the characters faced. That will keep any mama awake.

 

 

 

I had a hard time with The Hunger Games for similar reasons. I just couldn't read about kids killing kids for entertainment. Once I started reading (ds kept begging me to read the series) I was okay with it, but getting started was the hardest part.

 

Yes, I was noticing and appreciating that myself!  And also how funny the obsession with calendars can be.  I have a whole stack of books I keep telling myself I MUST. NOT. START. till Sunday.  But why???

 

 

 

Because if you plan to use any of them for BaW Bingo (not your huge one) you can't start them in 2016. All bingo books must be started in 2017. There. Now you have a good excuse. ;)

 

 

Speaking of even numbers, next year is an odd number as well as a prime number so the challenge is ending on an odd prime number.   :lol:

 

 

 

 

 

Cool challenge! Too bad there isn't a doable number that ends in 17. Other than 17, the first one is 317. I'm not even going to attempt that many. I'm not a fan of odd numbers unless they end in 7. Fortunately there are plenty of prime numbers that end in a 7, so I can do this one. :D

 

Here's a list of prime numbers up to 500 for those who want to quickly check. 

 

Agatha Christie has lots of books with prime numbers in the title ... and I've read all those books.  Hmmm.  At least that might be helpful to someone else.  Back to searching!  Right now I'm thinking Graham Greene's The Third Man

 

I'm planning to read Shakespeare's Two Gentlemen of Verona, unless something else comes along that looks really good.

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That looks good, so I added yet another book to my TR list.  I wonder if I can make it through the last few hours of 2016 without making that list any bigger.  :lol:  Fortunately, I don't feel like I need to get through all of these new additions in the coming year. 

 

I agree with both of your comments.

 

Yes, this is a lovely group. A few years ago I decided to leave WTM when things on the chat board were getting a bit contentious yet I couldn't tear myself away. I thought the best thing for me to do was leave, and  the only thing I'd really miss was BaW. I figured I'd just replace it with some Goodreads groups. It didn't work. There isn't anything like these threads, no online groups, and not even my IRL book club. I had to come back because of this group. 

 

Yes, you will always find suggestions for good books here. If I were to go through the books I've read since I first started participating in this thread as well as the ones on my TR list, I would be surprised if fewer than 1/3 (at least) came from people here.  

 

Happy New Year to all!  :party:  :cheers2:  :001_wub:  :wub:

 

Ditto ditto all of that about WTM.  I'm here because of BaW.  I love you ladies!

 

img_9296.jpg?w=640&h=467

 

Happy New Year, BaWers! Thank you for being here. Robin, thank you for hosting. Here's my annual wrap-up.

 

In 2016, I completed 123 books. Of course, this unrepentantly promiscuous reader could easily add another 250-plus titles of books left in various stages of “undress,†but only cover-to-covers appear on my annual list. Although I completed 16 fewer books this year, I read the same number of fiction titles (excluding graphic works) as last year: 57. Of the remaining 64 books, 15 were plays; 18 were non-fiction books; and 33 were graphic fiction.

 

Here are a few more numbers:

Number of plays read that were attributed to Shakespeare: 10 (of which 5 were rereads)

Total number of rereads: 13

Number of books read in 2016 that were published in 2016: 46 (of which 16 were novels)

 

Best fiction read in 2016:

â–  A Good School (Richard Yates; 1978. Fiction.)

â–  The Mandibles: A Family, 2029-2047 (Lionel Shriver; 2016. Fiction.)

â–  The Elementals (Michael McDowell; 1981. Fiction.)

â–  The Shawl (Cynthia Ozick; 1990. Fiction.)

â–  My Name Is Lucy Barton (Elizabeth Strout; 2016. Fiction.)

Honorable mention:

â–  The Last Policeman (Ben Winters; 2013. Fiction.)

■ The Nest (Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney; 2016. Fiction.)

â–  The Girls (Emma Cline; 2016. Fiction.)

 

Best plays read in 2016:

â–  Arcadia (Tom Stoppard; 1993. Drama.)

â–  The Life of Galileo (Bertolt Brecht; 1940. (Trans. John Willett; 1994.) Drama.)

 

Most compelling non-fiction read in 2016:

■ One of Us: The Story of a Massacre in Norway — and Its Aftermath (Åsne Seierstad; 2015. Non-fiction.)

â–  Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife (Barbara Bradley Hagerty; 2016. Non-fiction.)

â–  Neighbors (Jan T. Gross; 2001. Non-fiction.)

Honorable mention:

■ A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy (Sue Klebold; 2016. Non-fiction.)

â–  Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town (Jon Krakauer; 2015. Non-fiction.)

 

Best graphic fiction read in 2016:

â–  Fell, Volume 1, Feral City (Warren Ellis; 2007. Graphic fiction.)

â–  The Silence of Our Friends (Mark Long; 2012. Graphic fiction.)

 

Best reread:

â–  Heart of Darkness (Joseph Conrad; 1899. Fiction.)

Honorable mention:

â–  The Sparrow (Mary Doria Russell; 1996. Fiction.)

 

Random remarks:

◠Repeating this bit from one of my summer book posts: A Good School was, quite possibly, the best book I’ve read this year — which may have been the same thing I said about Richard Yates’ Revolutionary Road eight years ago. In “The Lost World of Richard Yates†(Boston Review, October/November 1999), Stewart O’Nan wrote:

 

Once the most vaunted of authors–praised by Styron and Vonnegut and Robert Stone as the voice of a generation–he seems now to belong to that august yet sad category, the writer’s writer. Andre Dubus, who was his student at Iowa, revered him, as does Tobias Wolff, and the jackets of Yates’s books are adorned with quotes by the likes of Tennessee Williams and Dorothy Parker, Ann Beattie and Gina Berriault. When authors talk his name pops up as the American writer we wish more people would read, just as Cormac McCarthy’s used to. In the acknowledgments section of his novellas, Women With Men, Richard Ford makes it plain: “I wish to record my debt of gratitude to the stories and novels of Richard Yates, a writer too little appreciated.â€

 

With his insightful and ranging appreciation, O’Nan — also a writer too little appreciated (if you are not familiar with his work, begin with A Prayer for the Dying and Last Night at the Lobster) — all but ensured that Yates would be revisited: Many of Yates’ books are, of course, back in print, and his “painful and sad†first novel received big-screen treatment in 2008. In fact, I finally saw the film over the summer, which led to the mentally intoned assertion, “The book was better,†and to the shelves, where several Yates titles awaited me. By the way, fans of John Williams’ Stoner will also appreciate A Good School.

 

â— The Elementals deserves a much wider audience.

 

â— My birthday wish is Fell, Volume 2.

 

◠In this “Year of the House Sparrow,†I cannot imagine how I managed not to read Chris Chester’s Providence of a Sparrow: Lessons from a Life Gone to the Birds, which languished on my TBR pile all. year. long. (That’s not the worst of the indignity heaped upon it: I purchased the book — Shhhh! — nearly nine years ago.)

 

◠Books like the brilliantly reported One of Us: The Story of a Massacre in Norway — and Its Aftermath (Åsne Seierstad, 2015) and the upliftingly informative Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife (Barbara Bradley Hagerty, 2016) are the reason I read. I think I must read more non-fiction this coming year. It’s that simple.

 

â— Speaking of Life Reimagined: The Science, Art, and Opportunity of Midlife, here are a few passages I have pressed into my commonplace book:

 

p. 219

You may be thinking, Who in midlife has the time for this? To which I say: Maybe you don’t now, but you will probably at some point. And how will you spend it? Frittering away the time? Or in full-throated pursuit of a passion? Even if you have full-time work and children at home, as many people in midlife do, you can still take small steps to punctuate the days and weeks with a hobby that gives you a little zing every time you think of it.

 

p. 235

Middle age makes no exclusive claim to stress, trauma, and the need for resilience. People break bones, lose their jobs, develop cancer at all points in their lives. But it seems that for many of us, troubles start to cluster in midlife: You are more likely to lose a parent or spouse after forty, more likely to be diagnosed with cancer after forty-five, and much more likely to be replaced by a younger, cheaper, more tech-savvy employee after fifty. I never gave much thought to rebounding from setbacks in my twenties and thirties because life was ascendant and setbacks were rare. Now I feel as if I spend half my time trying to plug leaks in the dam. Happily, the research indicates, I may be better equipped because I have lived for five and half decades.

 

What a lovely wrap up!  Thank you for posting it. 

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I just finished The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman.  Quite like a morality play, I'm conflicted as to the outcome.  One reason I don't like literary reads is you don't always get a happy or satisfying ending.   Which puts me at an even number of 102 for the end of the year.

 

Speaking of even numbers, next year is an odd number as well as a prime number so the challenge is ending on an odd prime number.   :lol:

 

I'm loving the fact that the new year begins on Sunday.  

 

Hope you are feeling better, Stacia!

 

Karen - Thank you for the bookmarks. They are beautiful and go with an hand painted asian silk fan I recently bought at Global Winter Wonderland.

 

 

:grouphug:  and  :wub:    to all and Happy New Year!

 

 

 

The Light Between the Oceans still bothers me and I read it several years ago. It's one of those books that really got to me.

 

 

 

81 is such a great number. 

 

8+1 = 9

 

and

 

9*9 = 81

 

and

 

3*3*3*3=81

 

See how cool it is!

 

 

 

I trying to keep track of the time so I can get on here and wish you a happy New Year right at midnight your time.  Your midnight is about when people will start showing up at my house for dinner though so we'll see how well I can stay focused.  :)

 

Prime numbers....I am planning to read The Seventh Miss Hatfield https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21528233-the-seventh-miss-hatfield?ac=1&from_search=true. It was already in my stack. The solitude of Prime Numbers also looks interesting https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6613956-the-solitude-of-prime-numbers?ac=1&from_search=true. Does it qualify without a number?

 

We are heading up to the tower to ring in the New Year. I will attempt to record it and try to post but not sure if I will be able to figure it out.

 

It's turned in to an odd New Year's here. A good family friend who has been ill for a couple of years has been rushed to the hospital. I am so worried.... We are totally in wait mode and driving each other a bit nuts. I've been trying to calm myself and what do I do? BaW.... Obviously all of you mean a lot to me. Thank you!!!!!

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Stacia -  I think I've got it.  I'm going to try to read equal books in all genres. 

 

Travel

Non-fiction

Mystery

Flufferton

Humor

General Fiction

YA/Childrens

SciFi/Fantasy

 

That's going to mean adding in much more general fiction and scifi/fantasy and limiting the mysteries and Flufferton.  It's going to be fun.

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Looking through my list of books read, here are some with prime numbers in the title:

 

Two Brothers by Fábio Moon & Gabriel Bá (graphic novel from Brazil)

Eleven Days by Stav Sherez (international gritty crime/thriller)

The Three Trials of Manirema by José J. Veiga (Brazilian/Kafka-esque tale ultimately about life under Brazilian military rule)

Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut (of course!)

Three Scenarios In Which Hana Sasaki Grows A Tail by Kelly Luce (I loved this collection of short stories)

101 Unuseless Japanese Inventions by Kenji Kawakami ( :lol: ... but it probably wouldn't really count as a book per Bingo standards)

Second Person Singular by Sayed Kashua (does "second" count as a number?; Arab-Israeli book about identity)

Five Quarters of the Orange by Joanne Harris (foodies might like this post-WWII book)

13 Rue Thérèse by Elena Mauli Shapiro (for Francophiles)

Three Ways to Capsize a Boat: An Optimist Afloat by Chris Stewart (fluffy non-fiction)

 

Is 13.5 a prime number? If so, here's a great book that has one of my favorite covers:

 

62032.jpg

 

 

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It's turned in to an odd New Year's here. A good family friend who has been ill for a couple of years has been rushed to the hospital. I am so worried.... We are totally in wait mode and driving each other a bit nuts. I've been trying to calm myself and what do I do? BaW.... Obviously all of you mean a lot to me. Thank you!!!!!

 

I'm sorry about your friend.  That's so stressful.  ((HUGS))

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mumto2, :grouphug:  & hope your friend is ok!

 

M--, totally agree about The Elementals. What a great gothic/horror book. I loved it. You give me hope for reading The Nest. I need to start it for my book club, but have been putting it off because it just doesn't seem that appealing.

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ETA: Just found a book for my Insects in the Title square!!!  :lol:

And that would be Cockroaches by Scholastique Mukasonga, a book that has been living in my dusty stacks because of the harrowing content on the Rwandan genocide.  I thought her novel Our Lady of the Nile was beautiful--and was delighted that it received several literary prizes.  I'll find my way to Cockroaches.  It may just take a while.

 

Stacia.......I just tried to quote your post and edit a bit. Absolute disaster. I'm glad you're feeling better! Also glad you are enjoying By Gaslight but no one wants to smell Victorian London. It's a big deal at museums currently and it's awful, stomach turning. We have to skip those exhibits which is sad because they always sound so interesting but the smell does us in.

 

I did finish my last book of the year. Longer Bodies by Gladys Mitchell. It just wasn't the book for me, parts were good fun but the rest was sort of oddly confusing. Unfortunately I think I am giving up on reading the Mrs. Bradley series for now. I still have a couple tv episodes that I haven't watched, planning to savor those.

 

Happy New Year everyone!!!!!

 

The only museum in which I have encountered "smell-o-rama" is the Viking one in York. They even sold scratch and sniff postcards!

 

 

 

Yes, this is a lovely group. A few years ago I decided to leave WTM when things on the chat board were getting a bit contentious yet I couldn't tear myself away. I thought the best thing for me to do was leave, and  the only thing I'd really miss was BaW. I figured I'd just replace it with some Goodreads groups. It didn't work. There isn't anything like these threads, no online groups, and not even my IRL book club. I had to come back because of this group. 

 

Yes, you will always find suggestions for good books here. If I were to go through the books I've read since I first started participating in this thread as well as the ones on my TR list, I would be surprised if fewer than 1/3 (at least) came from people here.  

 

Happy New Year to all!  :party:  :cheers2:  :001_wub:  :wub:

 

So glad that you decided to stay among your WTM friends.  Nan told me that she thought she'd be rolling out of here too but I managed to pull her into BaW.

 

 

It's turned in to an odd New Year's here. A good family friend who has been ill for a couple of years has been rushed to the hospital. I am so worried.... We are totally in wait mode and driving each other a bit nuts. I've been trying to calm myself and what do I do? BaW.... Obviously all of you mean a lot to me. Thank you!!!!!

Oh dear.  Sending best wishes to your friend and all concerned.

 

Tamales are steaming here.  My husband made tamales for our Solstice dinner with friends.  They were such a hit he decided to repeat the experience for our son who did not make it back to NC until the next day.

 

To top it off, I made a chocolate cake, a belated birthday cake for The Boy who spent his birthday on the Appalachian Trail.  Or at least that was my excuse to make him his favorite cake.

 

Toasting all of you tonight!  :cheers2:

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I made it.  Kept falling behind, but I managed to pass 52 by a little.

 

My fave new to me book was definitely We Have Always Lived in a Castle.

 

Although The Underground Railroad was a gripping, intriguing read, I think my fave written in 2016 was News of the World by Paulette Jiles.   Jane Steele and Lady Copy Makes Trouble were enjoyable fun novels.

 

My one recommendation for found-it-on-the-library's-new-shelf -and-didn't-know-I-wanted-to-read-it was one I read early this year.  Not sure if it was published in 2015 or 16,  it is A Hanging at Cinder Bottom by Glenn Taylor.  Enjoyable, literary fiction set in WV in the early 1900's and it involves a heist, the mob, and a monkey. 

 

I am glad I joined the group.  I have loved having an actual list of what I read.  So many great recommendations from the group, and when I read this thread, I feel connected to other readers which I don't have in real life.  Most of my friends read very specific types of books, and aren't really looking to discuss books.  Training my girls to love to discuss books though.  :-)​

 

Currently reading: Black Indian Slave Narratives by Patrick Minges, A Tyranny of Petticoats:  15 Stories of Belles, Bank Robbers & other Badass Girls (one story left).  Also reading to Ethan Frome with my dd

 

 

54.  Yellow Crocus by Laila Ibrahim (audio)

53.  The Innocent by David Baldacci (audio)

52.  I Let You Go by Clare Mackintosh ( really good mystery)

51.  All the Missing Girls by Megan Miranda

50.  Turbo Twenty-Three by Janet Evanovich (latest Stephanie Plum – audio)

49.  A Curious Beginning by Deanna Raybourn (audio)

48.  Sweetgirl by Travis Mulhauser (like a modern day True Grit with snowstorms and a baby)

47.  Turn of the Screw by Henry James ( with my 15 dd)

46.  Under the Harrow by Flynn Berry ( Mystery.)

45.  The Captured: A True Story of Abduction on the Texas Frontier by Scott Zesch

44.  Bird Box by Josh Malerman ( Audio.  Kept me on the edge of my seat.)

43.  Jane Steele by Lyndsay Faye  (Saw this at the library today and remembered that I read it in the spring.  Enjoyed this one. )

42.  We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson (Loved it.)

41.  The Odyssey by Homer (with my 10th grade dd)

40.  News of the World by Paulette Jiles (Terrific short novel about an older man trying to return a 10 yr old girl to her family after she is released from the Native American tribe who captured her 4 years before.)

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Not like anyone here needs more reading inspiration, but I think I could find a few good ones on this list...

 

50 Books We Can’t Wait To Read In 2017

Entertaining list....I couldn't find a single one to put a hold on. So it kept me entertained without adding to my pile.

 

Dh went and picked up my friend's dd for me. They are watching telly right now and happy. I'm still worried but part of my anxiety is calmed.

 

The food at Jane's house sounds better than mine! I just heated up frozen spring rolls for everyone for a snack. They have lots of Chex Mix to munch on. Chicken curry was dinner.

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Titles to share? I'm always looking for more unusual books to read.

 

The two weird books were :

The Hike - not recommended. The prose was awful and the plot a disjointed mess.

 

Geek Love - I'm more conflicted on this one. Considered to be one of the first US "weird" novels, the major plot line was interesting, the minor, reflective plot less so.

 

I'm currently reading The Weird, a very large anthology of short stories selected by Jeff Van DeMeer. In fact, as I was reading through 1Q84, the main character mentions the "Town of Cats" story found in the collection, except the original author is actually Japanese, not German as mentioned in the book.

 

You might enjoy The Weird, but be warned it's 1000+ pages. I'm reading a few stories a day and enjoying the experience.

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Y'all are cracking me up with your detailed reading plans for next year and your quest to finish this year with an even number of books read. And Amy with your pie chart! :svengo: I always thought of myself as rather OCD, but clearly I'm a lightweight!!

 

So is Norwegian Wood for January or February? I'm heading to my local independent store for their New Year's Day sale tomorrow and will pick it up. 

 

Dh and I are on a quest to finish up left over prime rib. He had ordered a 7lb roast and the butcher handed over a 12 pounder for the same price -- how could we say no? 4 of us did serious damage at our Christmas 2.0 dinner, and we sent left overs home with ds and dn, but we'll still be eating beef for days!! Tonight it is roast beef sandwiches with caramelized onions and blue cheese.  

 

Jane does your dh make his own masa for the tamales?  There was a large batch of bad masa sold up in Los Angeles, ruining the holidays for many families!  Terrible tamales

 

Mumto2, I'd love to hear the bells if you manage to figure out the technology to upload it to youtube! 

 

And Happy New Year to one and all!! 

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The two weird books were :

The Hike - not recommended. The prose was awful and the plot a disjointed mess.

 

Geek Love - I'm more conflicted on this one. Considered to be one of the first US "weird" novels, the major plot line was interesting, the minor, reflective plot less so.

 

I'm currently reading The Weird, a very large anthology of short stories selected by Jeff Van DeMeer. In fact, as I was reading through 1Q84, the main character mentions the "Town of Cats" story found in the collection, except the original author is actually Japanese, not German as mentioned in the book.

 

You might enjoy The Weird, but be warned it's 1000+ pages. I'm reading a few stories a day and enjoying the experience.

 

Thanks. I read The Hike & totally agree with you. It was a strange mess & not one I'd recommend. I've wondered about Geek Love after seeing it pop up on various recommended lists in the past year.

 

Y'all are cracking me up with your detailed reading plans for next year and your quest to finish this year with an even number of books read. And Amy with your pie chart! :svengo:

 

:lol:  Well, so far, my only reading plans for 2017 are...

 

1) Participate in BaW like always!

 

2) Read Murakami in January. (Hopefully two -- Norwegian Wood w/ the group & Underground because I've wanted to read it for years & Angela sent it to me.)

 

So that pretty much sums up my plans.

 

Oh, and I'll likely still be working on By Gaslight as 2017 becomes our new year....

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Here's a list of prime numbers up to 500 for those who want to quickly check. 

 

 

I'm planning to read Shakespeare's Two Gentlemen of Verona, unless something else comes along that looks really good.

Thanks for the link! My reading list for this year ended in a prime number, but can I do it next year? I'm thinking of reading this for the prime number Bingo square: I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives – Caitlin Alifirenka and Martin Ganda

 

Currently reading: Black Indian Slave Narratives by Patrick Minges

Will be interested to hear what you think! I knew Pat in Grad School in a galaxy far, far away. I just added his book to my TBR list. What a small, small world.

 

I've wiled away the entire day making lists of books I want to read across 11 categories (in case anyone wonders, the categories are as follows: Labor Union History, World War II Resistance, Economics, Liberation Theologies, Biography/Memoir, Classic Novels, Politics, a catch-all category of Voluntary Simplicity/Garden/Nature, Interfaith, and - finally - Books my Mom Would Have Liked).

 

I have so loved this BAW corner of the world. Thank you to Robin for hosting this thread and to all of you BAWers for making this such a great place. Happy New Year Everyone! 

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Low-key here. Last night we watched The Man Who Knew Infinity with Dev Patel and Jeremy Irons. It was very good, one for the whole family. We've spent an afternoon playing Ticket to Ride Europe and noshing on pistachios, chocolate, clementines and other tidbits. Tonight we're thinking Dickens with sticky-toffee pudding for dessert. 

 

Wishing all you BaWers blessings as we step over the wall from from one year into another.

 

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Thanks for the link! My reading list for this year ended in a prime number, but can I do it next year? I'm thinking of reading this for the prime number Bingo square: I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives – Caitlin Alifirenka and Martin Ganda

 

Will be interested to hear what you think! I knew Pat in Grad School in a galaxy far, far away. I just added his book to my TBR list. What a small, small world.

 

I've wiled away the entire day making lists of books I want to read across 11 categories (in case anyone wonders, the categories are as follows: Labor Union History, World War II Resistance, Economics, Liberation Theologies, Biography/Memoir, Classic Novels, Politics, a catch-all category of Voluntary Simplicity/Garden/Nature, Interfaith, and - finally - Books my Mom Would Have Liked).

 

I have so loved this BAW corner of the world. Thank you to Robin for hosting this thread and to all of you BAWers for making this such a great place. Happy New Year Everyone! 

My now 13 year old read I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives over the summer because I assigned it to her for summer reading. She said it was amazing and one of the best books she had read. I think a few tears were shed over it. It had a deep impact on her. I think I will put it on my list for the year. 

 

edited for clarity

Edited by AppleGreen
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Hi! I would love to play along with the BAW group. I see your posts, but have always been intimidated by some of the deep reading happening! Can someone give a primer on how the whole thing works or is it as easy as setting my reading goal for the year and then get snuggling with a book and something warm to drink? 

 

I feel like 2016 was the year of me getting back in my reading groove after several years of fits and starts with all the little people around. I have so loved getting back in my reading groove, so let me have the dets. 

 

 

yeesh, someone needs an editor before posting

Edited by AppleGreen
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Hi! I would love to play along with the BAW group. I see your posts, but have always been intimidated by some of the deep reading happening! Can someone give a primer on how the whole thing works or is it as easy as setting my reading goal for the year and then get snuggling with a book and something warm to drink?

 

Really, it's easy. We all love to read. We love to talk about what we read (& other things too). We read all kinds of stuff from heavy to fluffy, from serious to fun. It's all good. This is a very supportive group.

 

Just jump right in & talk about books!

 

Snuggling with a book & a warm drink sounds perfect. So, what are you reading right now?

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Hi! I would love to play along with the BAW group. I see your posts, but have always been intimidated by some of the deep reading happening! Can someone give a primer on how the whole thing works or is it as easy as setting my reading goal for the year and then get snuggling with a book and something warm to drink? 

 

I feel like 2016 was the year of me getting back in my reading groove after several years of fits and starts with all the little people around. I have so loved getting back in my reading groove, so let me have the dets. 

 

 

yeesh, someone needs an editor before posting

 It really is as easy as setting your reading goal for the year and then get comfy and settle down for some nice time reading. I started on this thread last year and am so glad I did. Folks read all sorts of books, so don't be intimidated. And, welcome!

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So is Norwegian Wood for January or February? I'm heading to my local independent store for their New Year's Day sale tomorrow and will pick it up. 

January and we'll start Story of Western Science in February!

 

:grouphug:

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mumto2, :grouphug: & hope your friend is ok!

 

M--, totally agree about The Elementals. What a great gothic/horror book. I loved it. You give me hope for reading The Nest. I need to start it for my book club, but have been putting it off because it just doesn't seem that appealing.

The Nest is not your usual cup of coffee, Stacia, but it's competent. The set-up interested me -- middle-aged siblings (gently) spar for their portion of an inheritance. Without becoming spoiler-ish, I want to say that what I liked best was the depiction of their struggle to "grow up." In the end, this is an easy book but a pretty worthwhile one.

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Totally not books but a gratuitous kitty picture to help ring in the new year. :D

 

Hannibal Lecter ( :lol: ) hugging up on her boyfriend (ds' cat). Normally ds' cat acts like, "Ewww. It's a girl. She's got cooties." But today they were being snuggly & cute.

 

IMG_1593.jpg

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Hi! I would love to play along with the BAW group. I see your posts, but have always been intimidated by some of the deep reading happening! Can someone give a primer on how the whole thing works or is it as easy as setting my reading goal for the year and then get snuggling with a book and something warm to drink? 

 

I feel like 2016 was the year of me getting back in my reading groove after several years of fits and starts with all the little people around. I have so loved getting back in my reading groove, so let me have the dets. 

 

 

yeesh, someone needs an editor before posting

Welcome AppleGreen!  Glad you decided to join in.  Yes, it is as easy as setting your reading goal for the year, then diving in to the discussions.   Every Sunday I post on the 52 Books blog and on the forum, a new thread,continuing the conversation, and closing out the old thread. The blog post is prescheduled and usually goes up Saturday evening, but I post on the forum between 10:00 and 11:00 pacific time in the morning.  Yes, I'm a late riser. Hubby turned me into a night owl. There are a few reading mini challenges along the way which you can choose to join or not.  Like Stacia and EthelMertz said, we have a wide variety of readers from the heady stuff to the fluffy.     If you like to blog or write reviews, you can link up on the 52 Books Blog. You can say as much or as little about your reads.  It's like an never ending open house party.  You can grab a seat and take it all in or jump right in to the conversation.  If you have any questions, there will always be someone around to answer.  ~cheers~

Edited by Robin M
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OT: So when I post from my iPad, it seems as if I have no ability to format. If I am wrong, please tell me how. Thank you!

Good question. I haven't figured it out yet either. You can only do the basic of posts and there isn't any menu.  It's frustrating if trying to do a major post.  

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Wow!  I've been getting all kinds of hits on the blog today from India.  Just discovered The Times of India included a Read More article in their newspaper and 52 Books in 52 Weeks is the first link.  Amazing!

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Wow!  I've been getting all kinds of hits on the blog today from India.  Just discovered The Times of India included a Read More article in their newspaper and 52 Books in 52 Weeks is the first link.  Amazing!

Wow! That's really cool! Way to go, Robin!

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For your reading pleasure, the Suzuki Samurai page from the Crap Cars book.

 

IMG_0553.jpg?t=1483154348

 

:lol:

 

I actually saw one of these on the roads a few months back and was shocked.  It was the first time I had seen one in years but evidently they are still selling them.  I had to explain to my oldest what it was, how they were popular among high school/college students (because they were pretty inexpensive IIRC) until they showed a tendancy for rolling over everytime you took a turn.

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