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Robin M

Book a Week 2018 - BW6: February Tour along the Roman Road

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Happy Sunday and welcome to week six in our Open Roads Reading Adventure. Greetings to all our readers and to all following our progress.  Mister Linky is available weekly on 52 Books in 52 Weeks  to share a link to your book reviews.

 

 

We are waving goodbye to the Silk Road and flying to the United Kingdom to begin our February Tour along the Roman Roads.   We'll be hiking around England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, following in the footsteps of Agatha Christie and Christopher Brookmyre, as well as taking time to spell the flowers.  This week also begins our Brit Tripping along the Roman Roads. 

 

Our Blossomology reading challenge takes us from ancient times to the present.  Our flower of the month is the Rose which was the sacred flower of Egypt and petrified wreaths have been found in Egyptian tombs.  Roses were a favorite of Cleopatra as well as the Roman Emperor Nero.  Roses were mentioned in the ancient writings of the Sumerians, as well as Confucius and Buddhist religious documents.  Fast forward to the 15th Century England where roses were already being cultivated and The War of the Roses.  The Tudor Rose,  which is now the national flower of the United Kingdom, was the traditional heraldic emblem for the House of Tudor after the House of York and House of Lancaster were united.  Roses are the symbol of love and quite popular on Valentine's day. 

 

 

There are a number of directions to go with this challenge. You may choose to spell out the word, reading one book per letter using either the title and/or the first or last name of the author.  Yes, you can mix it up.  You may read a book with the name of the flower, color of the flower in the title, or on the cover.  Another possibility is a book which takes place in the time period or flower's country of origin or has some cultural significance and/or symbolism of the flower.  The choices are unlimited.  Have fun following rabbit trails and see where it takes you. 

 

Our author choices of the month are English author Agatha Christie and Scottish author Christopher Brookmyre who I'll talk about more next week.  Along with our Brit Tripping, we are adding in an Agatha Christie Perpetual reading challenge and all the information may be found on the 52 Books blog. 

 

 

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Our Brit Tripping  begins in London and we will be following the Roman road Ermine Street for 200 miles from London to York. Our adventure will begin with some detecting at Scotland Yard if you’re following the Mystery route or something set in London if you aren’t.

 

Rabbit trails: History of Scotland Yard  Bloomsbury London Literary Walks  Great London Spots for Booklovers  More Literary Walks  Bookstores to check out

 

 

Have fun exploring! 

 

 

******************************************

 

What are you reading this week?

 

 

 

Link to Week Five

 

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I'm still buried in Mark Helprin's A Soldier of the Great War (physical chunky book)

 

as well as my current ebook -  Murakami's A Wild Sheep Chase.  Oh my, the ears!  :lol:  

 

For London Scotland yard read, I'll be reading The Sherlockian by Graham Moore.

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I've gotten more reading time than usual this weekend, so I've already got three counties for Brit Tripping. I'll just enjoy it while it lasts, because I don't expect to be able to sustain this level of reading most of the time.

 

10. The Children of Green Knowe (Huntingdonshire)

11. Death on the Nile (a blink-and-you-miss it reference to Northampton as the setting at the beginning before the action moves to Egypt)

12. Lady Susan (Bedfordshire)

 

Plus I am still making steady progress in Kristin Lavransdatter, How to Read Literature Like a Professor, and Blackout.

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I'm still buried in Mark Helprin's A Soldier of the Great War (physical chunky book)

 

as well as my current ebook - Murakami's A Wild Sheep Chase. Oh my, the ears! :lol:

 

For London Scotland yard read, I'll be reading The Sherlockian by Graham Moore.

Yes, those ears are potentially the oddest Murakami "thing" yet! :lol:

 

Thank you so much for thee Agatha Christie challenge!!! I love it! I am actually already listening to The Mysterious Affair at Stylesso I have officially started working on it apparently. ;)

 

I finished A Test of Wills by Charles Todd https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/129561.A_Test_of_Wills and have to say I liked not loved it. I found it a slow read and found myself comparing it to another post WWI England read that I read while prepping for Brit Tripping also and River of Darkness won. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/456724.River_of_Darkness. I will read more but may let the next in thee series go back to the library while I work on my stack because I have some great books! :)

 

I am finishing Moonshadow by Thea Harrison. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32176915-moonshadow Well done fantasy so far that happens to cover two county's Shropshire and Northumberland so far. A young magical woman is offered a special manor house if she can open the door. The estate is the scene of a huge magical war apparently.

 

Now for my London\Scotland Yard stack......

 

Kissed a Sad Goodbye by Deborah Crombie https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/76884.Kissed_a_Sad_Goodbye

 

The Man in the Queue by Josephine Tey https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/243400.The_Man_in_the_Queue

 

Whose Body by Dorothy Sayershttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/192893.Whose_Body_

 

Rattle His Bone by Carols Dunn https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/610775.Rattle_His_Bones

 

Gnomon by Nick Harkaway https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34974738-gnomon which is my rebel book ;)

 

I have several more checked out but have prioritized! :lol:

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This week I finished Pascal and am making good progress on Quite Early One Morning, Dylan Thomas' collection of short fiction and essays, which includes some marvelous thoughts on Wilfrid Owen, Welsh poets in general, Sir Philip Sidney, the prose of Walter de la Mare ("In his more mature dramatic stories about grown-up human relationships, he often used a convoluted monologue manner that occasionally suggested the ghost of a landbound Conrad talking from behind a pot of ferns"), and the reading of poetry aloud.

 

Continuing Child's Ballads, of course. And hoping tomorrow to start on George Gissing's New Grub Street, which I gather is very much about London. Roman roads, ho!

 

(I recommend Pascal to anyone with a vested interest in the current civil war in the Catholic Church, by the way. Startlingly on point.)

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I finished this week:

 

The golem and the djinn

Daisy Miller

The body in the orchard.

 

I liked them all :D

 

The body in the orchard is a Flemish book set in Brussels.

Brussels is divided in several police departments, each with its own language (some Dutch, some French, some biliangual); it is Flemish neither Wallonian including a lot of immigrants with all types of background. This makes solving a murder in an orchard in Brussels not easy.

Reading the book felt like passing the integrationtest, as I could follow the humor and absurdism.

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I am planning to read "A Beautiful Blue Death" by Charles Finch for the London stop on the Brit Road Trip and "Out of the Ruins" by Karen Barnett for the "O" in Rose.  I have a fairly busy week so I am not sure how far I will get.

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I read A Thousand Days in Venice - 4 Stars - I'm feeling generous giving this 4 Stars. To be fair, I would give it 3.5. This is a beautifully written narrative of life in Venice. It’s a tiny bit flowery with the romance, at least for me, but it still remains sweet. The food descriptions are incredible. The author is a chef and has included recipes. I always enjoy books that weave recipes into the stories. I assume that others in the series will have recipes also. The author is a chef and she not only loves food, but simply loves life. 

 

9781616202811.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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Hi everyone! I just wanted to post real quick before I have to go do Super Bowl stuff. 

 

Diary of a Bookseller by Shaun Bythell. Really liked this! I would love to pay a visit to this bookstore - have any of our British BAWers been here? https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35512560-the-diary-of-a-bookseller This takes place in southwestern Scotland - Wigtonshire? so would this book count for anything? 

 

Mystery Loves Company: Another John Pickett Mystery by Sheri Cobb South. Meh. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37944858-mystery-loves-company I'm counting this for my London read. 

 

and I am almost finished with David Lebovitz's new book - L'Appart: The Delights and Disasters of Making My Paris Home. This has been a stressful read!

 

I'll be back later to see what everyone has been reading :)

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Edited by Mothersweets
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I finished Georgette Heyer's Regency Buck which I enjoyed, and I also started and finished Kei Miller's Augustown which I thought was beautiful. It looks at the life of poor blacks in the Kingston, Jamaica suburb of Augustown (fictionalized August Town), and it was an interesting complement to recent reads like We Were Eight Years in Power and The Hate U Give. It was a Jamaican version of looking at long-term effects of slavery on a people. New to me was the idea that they are held down by a society and class structure rather than just a race, as Jamaica is mostly black. But held down they were. Beautifully written and well worth reading.

 

Up next I have SWB's Rethinking School.

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Hello fellow readers!  I finished up Elizabeth Gaskell's Sylvia's Lovers.  It was good, but not my favorite.  I wrote a review at my blog.  

 

I am still slowly, slowly, slowly reading Apologia Pro Vita Sua; that's my morning meditation reading so i only read little bits at a time.  The funny thing is that is corresponds with the history I am teaching at the co-op so I'm rather fascinated by Newman's perspective.  He lived in a bubble it seems and so far anyway doesn't talk about all the unrest going on.

 

I'm excited to be listening to The Brothers Karamazov on audio on my phone using the LIbrivox recording which so far is quite good.  I'm in the 2nd book where the Elder is meeting with Aloysha's (sp?) family.  i am really enjoying it in a way I did not when I last attempted to read it (instead of listen to it.  I gave up half way through.)  But this time, I am getting some references, again because of the European history course I am teaching. 

 

I'm also rereading a Georgette Heyer novel, one of my favorites, Sylvester or the Wicked Uncle.  Lots of fun to read on this gray, rainy, February Sunday.

 

Happy reading!

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I'm reading book three in my backlog of books by fellow writers. So far I've come to one conclusion that doesn't really startle me; I'm really, really bad at following multiple narrators and multiple POVs. Oh, well.

Other than that, I've got a second collection of Peter Beagle short stories to read, one non-fiction book on writing poetry, and another non-fiction book that is supposed to help me get out of the slush pile with fantastic queries and so forth. :001_smile:

Edited by Critterfixer
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I've only read two books so far this year, The Magnolia Story and Mansfield Park.  LOVED The Magnolia Story.  Still find Mansfield Park Grrr & Blah.

 

We have been helping out a mom in crisis by keeping her two little girls (6 and 2) for about 9 hours a day.  Lots of changes and adjustments, little extra time to read!

 

Currently I'm reading Persuasion and listening to The Eye of the World and Talking as Fast as I Can and my read aloud with the 6yo is The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

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Just popping in for a moment while DS takes his bath. I'm super excited about starting Brit Tripping today. So excited that I put my book out where I could grab it this afternoon and read. Now I can't find it. Ugh. #readerproblems

 

I had three Scotland Yard books from the library and decided to read the first page of them to figure out which one I wanted to read. I started with Now You See Me by SJ Bolton. Didn't get a chance to read the others because I was hooked. 

 

ETA: Found it. It was in the laundry basket. *shrug* 

Edited by aggieamy
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I spent a lot of time in the car this week which helped me finish several audio books. I've also been walking more thanks to a new prescription (it helps with nerve pain without dulling my thoughts) so I have more time to listen to audiobooks.
 
Books finished last week:

  • Electronic Universe: How Electricity Switched on the Modern World by David Bodanis, 6 hours. History - Electricity and Electronics. A microhistory of electricity and its use in modern technology. A fantastic audiobook, I especially enjoyed the story about Alexander Graham Bell and his wife Mabel Gardiner Hubbard.
  • Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami, 440 pages. Magical Realism - Japan. A spin on Oedipus Rex, a boy searches for his missing mother and sister. I finished this Murakami just in time before the end of January. It was almost a Murakami Bingo blackout in one book. It might be interesting to research the various philosophical ideas covered in the story, but I don't think I'll be re-reading this any time soon. I enjoyed Norwegian Wood much more.
  • Lucifer's Hammer by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle, 629 pages. Science Fiction. As an asteroid threatens to hit the Earth, various people fight to survive the resulting chaos. This was the first of the 100 NPR reads that I enjoyed though I'll confess I like action/adventure sci-fi more than philosophical sci-fi. I was reminded of Deep Impact and it seems the movie borrowed heavily from the book. #96 on NPR's Sci-Fiction/Fantasy list.
  • Edgedancer (Stormlight Archives #2.5) by Brandon Sanderson, 6 hours. Fantasy - Second World. A thief explores her new powers while avoiding a law officer searching for her. One of my favorite new characters in book three of the Stormlight Archives, her single point-of-view was too much for a novella.
  • The Plundered Planet: Why We Must--And How We Can--Manage Nature for Global Prosperity by Paul Collier, 271 pages. Economics - Speculative. An economist offers solutions to developing countries trying to manage growth and protect the environment.
  • Evolving Ourselves: How Unnatural Selection and Nonrandom Mutation are Changing Life on Earth by Juan Enriquez and Steve Gallans, 11 hours. Science - Speculative. Both a look at historical human evolution as well as trends today that might lead to additional evolution in the future. A great listen.
  • Rings, Swords, and Monsters: Exploring Fantasy Literature by Michael D.C. Drout, 7 hours. Fantasy - History. A survey of major fantastical works, with a heavy emphasis on J. R. R. Tolkien. Parts were interesting, but anyone who says Terry Pratchett isn't a fantasy writer gets a sharp side-eye from me. The course also shows its age by only briefly discussing J. K. Rowling since the seventh book wasn't released when the course was recorded.
  • Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson, 572 pages. Science Fiction. The political intrigues between the first colonists of Mars. #95 on NPR's Science Fiction/Fantasy list.
  • The Hound and The Falcon by Judtih Tarr, 688 pages. Fantasy. After he discovers he's one of the fair folk, a monk fights to save his people from religious fanatics. I remembered this book (actually an omnibus of three novels) after an aborted attempt at reading the first book of the Xanth series. This was a much better book, immersed in medieval history, with some magic and sorcery. The monk's relationship with a fair folk woman is an important part of the story, but the romantic elements are of the "shut the door" variety. This was an inter-library loan with no renewals allowed (the note was starred multiple times) so I hurried to get it read before the loan period expired.

I'm listening to The Gene: An Intimate History which has been very enjoyable. I have Isaac Asimov's The Caves of Steel up next for the NPR reads.
 
I said I wasn't doing any challenges this year, but ended up finishing the January flower.

  • C: The Little Book of Common Sense Investing by John Bogle
  • H: History's Great Military Blunders and the Lessons They Teach by Gregory Aldrete
  • R: Rethinking School by Susan Wise Bauer
  • Y: You are not a Gadget by Jaron Lanier
  • S: Strange Weather by Joe Hill
  • A: An Artificial Night by Seanan McGuire
  • N: Night Watch by Terry Pratchett
  • T: It Takes One to Tango by Winifred Reilly
  • H: Under Heaven by Guy Gavriel Kay
  • E: Edgedancer by Brandon Sanderson
  • M: The (Mis)behavior of Markets by Benoit Mandelbrot
  • U: Electronic Universe by David Bodanis
  • M: Monstrous Regiment by Terry Pratchett

ETA: Fixed some ugly writing. I wrote this while watching the Super Bowl. I wasn't rooting for either team, but I watch every year.

Edited by ErinE
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Not much time to read this week, but I am still reading a little Menachem Elon every day.  I'm also about halfway through The Portrait of a Lady and am starting to feel like I'm reading a magnificently written description of a slow-motion train wreck.  

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The clueless husband strikes again. Somehow, dh did something on his Kindle that sent his last book to my Goodreads account (we share a Kindle account but not Goodreads). Next thing I know I saw a notification that said "Loesje liked your review of Great Escapes of WWII"  :lol:  I've since deleted it from my Read list. This is the guy who "accidentally" read By Gaslight because it downloaded to his Kindle for some reason.  :lol:

 

Actually I have to thank you Loesje. If you hadn't brought it to my attention I might not have realized he did that. He says he has no idea how that happened.  :glare:

 

I finished several books last week -

 

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, audio book version

Henry VI Part 2

Excursion to Tindari, Inspector Montalbano #5

 

Currently reading -

 

The Secret Keeper, Kate Morton - audio book

Augustown, Kei Miller

Henry VI Part 3

Before the Dawn: Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors, Nicholas Wade

We Were Eight Years in Power, Ta-Nehisi Coates

 

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Finished two books this week: 


 


10. Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries by Kory Stamper (ebook) - As someone who really loves language and etymology and all that geeky stuff, this book was a very fun read.  A lot of information about how the modern dictionary came to be and how dictionaries are developed.  The author manages to inject an amount of wit into the subject.  Recommend to language geeks.  :)  4 stars.


 


11. Nirgendwo in Afrika/Nowhere in Africa by Stefanie Zweig - The story of the author's childhood in Kenya after her German Jewish family flees the Nazis.  Her parents were interesting - they spoke no English and didn't manage to learn much (did much better with Swahili).  But the father was a lawyer and words were what he was good at - being a farmer or soldier (for the Brits), he just felt incompetent.  He was so homesick, in spite of the fact that the rest of the family back home didn't survive the holocaust.  At the end he decides to move the whole family back to Germany (he is offered a position as a judge, as they were short after the Nazis were purged from the justice system)  - there is a sequel about their return to Germany which I'm very interested to read.  For those who want to read in English, I get the feeling the translation is not so good.  There were a couple of complaints on Goodreads, and there was a line quoted from the book on the Wiki which I was very confused by and had to go back and read the original to figure out what the heck.  The family back home had written saying they were being deported to Poland, and the English translation read "We are very excited.  We are going to Poland tomorrow."  I had already read that, and I had no such memory of such a line - in fact, I remembered reading about the opposite.  I found it - in German it says "Wir sind sehr aufgeregt. Morgen müssen wir nach Polen zur Arbeit. Vergesst uns nicht."  Now, sure the first translation that pops up in google translate for 'aufgeregt" is "excited"  - but there's also connotation.  "Excited" in English usually has a positive connotation, "aufgeregt" tends to have a negative one -  here it would definitely be more like 'upset/agitated/nervous' bordering on 'frightened' (all 'senses' in the definition - for dictionary definition of 'sense' here see Word by Word above  ;) ) - but it's clear they know they're going to their deaths in Poland; the English translation sounds like they think they're looking forward to a Polish vacation.  I read it as:  "We are very nervous (actually, the best translation I can think of would be paraphrased - 'We are in a state'.). Tomorrow we must go to Poland to work.  Don't forget us."  So, if that's any indication of the rest of the book, not well translated, at least into English (it also leaves out that they must go, or that it's for 'work' as in 'work camp') - so fair warning.  But a very interesting piece of history, from a perspective I hadn't seen before.  4.5 stars.


 


Currently reading:


 


Celine by Peter Heller (audiobook) - almost done with this and quite enjoying it.  It's a detective story that isn't quite a detective story but I'm not at all minding the meandering paths.  It's really an homage by the author to his mother, who was quite the interesting character.  I also just found out that one of the local hs families we knew sent one of their dds to the Putney school in VT, which plays quite a role in the book (my guess is that Heller and his mom, as well as 'Hank' and his mom the main character went there).


 


The Wizard and the Prophet: Two Remarkable Scientists and their Dueling Visions to Shape Tomorrow's World by Charles Mann (ebook) - I absolutely loved 1491 by this author, and also really liked 1493 - even though I'm not very far into the book yet, I think this will be another hit for me.  Just have to finish the chunkster before Overdrive wants it back!


 


Coming up:


 


I hope to start Augustown tonight.  I also have Le Belle Sauvage and The Girl in the Tower sitting in the pile...  A Piece of the World will be my next audio if it comes off hold on Overdrive - I'm #1 in line for 2 copies, so I'm hoping one will jostle free by the time I'm done with Celine...


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This weekend has been busy so I haven't gotten to read much at all.  Link turned 14 yesterday (he's the oldest), and tonight was the usual Super Bowl festivities, which means I sat in the kitchen at a friend's house like I do every year while the game plays.   :lol:  I did see a couple plays but honestly I don't like football so I didn't care.  And I thought JT was boring.   :D   :leaving:   :lol:

Side note:  When he sang the song from Trolls, my 3yo niece was like, offended.  She did not at all like that he was singing it because the visual was so wrong.  Her face was hysterical.

 

Ok, books.

 

This week each of us finished some:

 

Link (14):

Tell them We Remember: The Story of the Holocaust

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (I FINALLY GOT HIM TO START READING THEM.  SHEESH.)

50 People Every Christian Should Know (this was an interesting list, as I knew maybe 5 of them)

The Lost Hero (Rick Riordan's series)

Son of Neptune (same)

 

Astro (12):

In Freedom's Cause

 

Pink (8.5):

Flora and Ulysses (which she apparently really liked)

 

Me:

The Ghost Bride

 

 

Right now I'm reading You Shall Know Our Velocity and it's really interesting.  So much of it reminds me of stream-of-consciousness writing lol.  I will admit, sometimes I kind of skim over those paragraphs.  But in general it's an interesting book.

 

January ended and I've at least got almost every book on my end table to finish Chrysanthemum:

 

C: The Crucible

H: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

R: The Residence

Y: You Shall Know Our Velocity

S: The Secret Keeper

A: The Artist's Way

N: Never Let Me Go

T: Too Small to Ignore

H: Hyperbole and a Half (not yet started)

E:

M: Men Without Women

U: Uncle Tom's Cabin (not started)

M: The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (not started)

 

 

Edited by PeacefulChaos
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The clueless husband strikes again. Somehow, dh did something on his Kindle that sent his last book to my Goodreads account (we share a Kindle account but not Goodreads). Next thing I know I saw a notification that said "Loesje liked your review of Great Escapes of WWII"  :lol:  I've since deleted it from my Read list. This is the guy who "accidentally" read By Gaslight because it downloaded to his Kindle for some reason.  :lol:

 

Actually I have to thank you Loesje. If you hadn't brought it to my attention I might not have realized he did that. He says he has no idea how that happened.  :glare:

 s

One of my devices updates Goodreads thanks (sarcasm) to a recent update whenever I check a book out on Overdrive it puts it in my Currently Reading. Technically it’s true I guess but I am not necessarily the reader for everything I check out. Briefly I thought it was a programming issue but Read is totally different! :lol:

 

  

I've only read two books so far this year, The Magnolia Story and Mansfield Park.  LOVED The Magnolia Story.  Still find Mansfield Park Grrr & Blah.

 

We have been helping out a mom in crisis by keeping her two little girls (6 and 2) for about 9 hours a day.  Lots of changes and adjustments, little extra time to read!

 

Currently I'm reading Persuasion and listening to The Eye of the World and Talking as Fast as I Can and my read aloud with the 6yo is The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

 

 

That is so wonderful! What lucky little girls.......especially the one having The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe read to her. I love Narnia in general and would totally love to cuddle up and read it to someone right now.

 

 

Just popping in for a moment while DS takes his bath. I'm super excited about starting Brit Tripping today. So excited that I put my book out where I could grab it this afternoon and read. Now I can't find it. Ugh. #readerproblems

 

I had three Scotland Yard books from the library and decided to read the first page of them to figure out which one I wanted to read. I started with Now You See Me by SJ Bolton. Didn't get a chance to read the others because I was hooked. 

 

ETA: Found it. It was in the laundry basket. *shrug*

 

Laundry basket. 😂

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I finished Chrysanthemum also.

 

C. The Crow Trap by Ann Cleve’s

H. The Legend of the Highland Dragon by Isabel Cooper

R. River of Darkness by Ronnie Airth

Y. Young Jane Young by Gabrielle Zezinho

S. Someone to Wed by Mary Balogh

A. A Duke in Shining Armor by Loretta Chase

N. No Other Duke Will Do by Grace Burrowes

T. A Test of Wills by Charles Todd

H. Hear the Wind Sing by Haruki Murakami

E. Man in the Empty Suit by Sean Farrell

M. The Fleet Street Murders by Charles Finch

U. The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra by Vaseem Khan

M. The Fleet Street Murders by Charles Finch

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One of my devices updates Goodreads thanks (sarcasm) to a recent update whenever I check a book out on Overdrive it puts it in my Currently Reading. Technically it’s true I guess but I am not necessarily the reader for everything I check out. Briefly I thought it was a programming issue but Read is totally different! :lol:

How does Goodreads know who you are on Overdrive? You've linked the accounts somehow? What's the benefit to doing that? Does it add things on your Goodreads TR list to your Overdrive wish list automatically - or vice versa?

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I read an entire book this weekend; a rarity for me.  I came down with another cold so was able to lounge quite a bit.  I also kept up with my chapter-a-day of War and Peace (sometimes I read more than once chapter, but the battle chapters are so dull for me I'm often glad to stop at one) and the Bible (I am generally reading more there too). 

 

So far this year:

 

1.  A Christmas Party (Heyer)

2.  Closed Casket (Sophie Hannah)

3.  No Wind of Blame (Heyer)

4.  The Namesake (Jhumpa Lahiri)

5.  The Convenient Marriage (Heyer)

6.  Quick Service (Wodehouse)

7.  Claire of the Sea Light (Edwidge Danticat)

8.  Footsteps in the Dark (Heyer)

9.  Lydia Cassatt Reading the Morning Paper (Harriett Scott Chessman)

10. Ghostwalk (Rebecca Stott) -- Cambridgeshire!

11. The Black House (Peter May)

 

You can see it is all fiction and most of it is fluff.  Some were audio books which I listen to while doing chores.  I am starting to tire of the fluff and mysteries so might start some of the (several) nonfiction titles I have gathered recently from the library!  

 

ETA: though maybe I need to find a London/Scotland Yard book first... I am still sick after all.   :-)

 

Edited by marbel
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One of my devices updates Goodreads thanks (sarcasm) to a recent update whenever I check a book out on Overdrive it puts it in my Currently Reading. Technically it’s true I guess but I am not necessarily the reader for everything I check out. Briefly I thought it was a programming issue but Read is totally different! :lol:

 

   

 

 

 

His Kindle did just have an update but I checked with him. I also looked at the book on Amazon. It's worse than I thought. By borrowing it, he signed up for the trial of Kindle Unlimited (we're now unsigned up :D). He did know he was rating the book but thought it would rate it on Amazon. Since I connected my Amazon and Goodreads accounts it rates on Goodreads.

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How does Goodreads know who you are on Overdrive? You've linked the accounts somehow? What's the benefit to doing that? Does it add things on your Goodreads TR list to your Overdrive wish list automatically - or vice versa?

Ok, you asked. ;). Not really sure, but I think it is because I accidentally signed in via the Goodreads icon once on my main page when setting up my new device.....not sure what the proper name is but the home page where they offer me tons of icons that I will never use. It’s actually a different device that I think is connecting the overdrive but I think they are “friends†now thanks to updates. This is beyond kindle syncing because I suspect my iPad with the kindle app is also involved. Don’t I sound paranoid......:lol: I have always gone in to Goodreads via my most visited websites, still do. Anyway I think I connected things that I would have preferred not to by clicking that icon and typing in my account password. That’s all I can think of. I could ask my cyber security major but would probably regret the lecture. 😳

 

 

  

His Kindle did just have an update but I checked with him. I also looked at the book on Amazon. It's worse than I thought. By borrowing it, he signed up for the trial of Kindle Unlimited (we're now unsigned up :D). He did know he was rating the book but thought it would rate it on Amazon. Since I connected my Amazon and Goodreads accounts it rates on Goodreads.

.

 

It’s good that you discovered the accidental membership and were able to cancel.

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I finished Georgette Heyer's Regency Buck which I enjoyed, and I also started and finished Kei Miller's Augustown which I thought was beautiful. It looks at the life of poor blacks in the Kingston, Jamaica suburb of Augustown (fictionalized August Town), and it was an interesting complement to recent reads like We Were Eight Years in Power and The Hate U Give. It was a Jamaican version of looking at long-term effects of slavery on a people. New to me was the idea that they are held down by a society and class structure rather than just a race, as Jamaica is mostly black. But held down they were. Beautifully written and well worth reading.

 

Up next I have SWB's Rethinking School.

 

Augustown sounds quite intriguing - I've decided to make a BaW recommended want to read shelf in Goodreads.  It seems that lots of others are also reading it/wanting to do so.  

 

 

Finished two books this week: 

 

10. Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries by Kory Stamper (ebook) - As someone who really loves language and etymology and all that geeky stuff, this book was a very fun read.  A lot of information about how the modern dictionary came to be and how dictionaries are developed.  The author manages to inject an amount of wit into the subject.  Recommend to language geeks.  :)  4 stars.

 

11. Nirgendwo in Afrika/Nowhere in Africa by Stefanie Zweig - The story of the author's childhood in Kenya after her German Jewish family flees the Nazis.  Her parents were interesting - they spoke no English and didn't manage to learn much (did much better with Swahili).  But the father was a lawyer and words were what he was good at - being a farmer or soldier (for the Brits), he just felt incompetent.  

 

Also added that first one to my want to read pile.  The second one I would love to read but the translation issue might be too much for me.

 

I finished Born a Crime by Trevor Noah this weekend and promptly plopped it down on DH's desk and said 'You should read this.'  I don't recommend a lot of books to him but this one draws you in, and you learn so much about how South Africa worked/works - I have a good basic knowledge about the history of S. Africa but have not read a lot of books set there/written by people who live(d) there and this gives a really good idea of what it is actually like.  I'm even tempted to give it to DD to read;  I didn't feel like anything was too objectionable.  I might save it for a couple of years for her.  Maybe I need another shelf on Goodreads.  Hmm, this is getting dangerous.

 

Started reading The Masked City by Genevieve Cogman, second in the Invisible Library series, and I'm delighted to say that I'm enjoying it as much as the first one.  I do like Irene, the librarian and main character, and her ability to use her brains as well as her librarian talents to get out of a situation.  And - they mention Scotland Yard several times and the beginning is set in London (and I think the end is as well) so I'm going to use this for my Rebel Brit Tripping London/Scotland Yard book!  

 

Still plodding along on my microhistory of the New York World's Fair and have not yet got back to The World Between Two Covers and it's not looking likely that I will.

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I'm so tired today. After I found my book last night I told myself that famous lie that all readers tell themselves. "I'll just read a few pages in bed before I go to sleep."  *Ha ha ha.*

 

At midnight (page 150) I was emailing Mumto2 trying to discuss what was going happened next in the book since she already read it. She's darn lucky I didn't call her! 

 

Mistakes were made and if I had gone to bed at midnight then I wouldn't be such a wreck today. At 2:30ish I finally turned off my light and as soon as John was busy playing this morning I picked it back up. Loved it! The book had such an amazing sense of location (London) and the mystery was just beautifully done and tightly plotted. Highly recommend.

 

Now You See Me by SJ Bolton

 

I'll be taking a nap on the Detectives Bus  ... wake me when we get to Cambridgeshire.

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For the non-fiction loving gals on Detective Bus I would also recommend Forensics: What Bugs, Burns, Prints, DNA and More Tell Us About Crime by Val McDermid. I read it late last year and it would count for Scotland Yard but she is all over England in it - Yorkshire, Manchester, Lancaster, Scotland, London ... more that I can't remember.

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I finished Born a Crime by Trevor Noah this weekend and promptly plopped it down on DH's desk and said 'You should read this.'  I don't recommend a lot of books to him but this one draws you in, and you learn so much about how South Africa worked/works - I have a good basic knowledge about the history of S. Africa but have not read a lot of books set there/written by people who live(d) there and this gives a really good idea of what it is actually like.  I'm even tempted to give it to DD to read;  I didn't feel like anything was too objectionable.  I might save it for a couple of years for her.  Maybe I need another shelf on Goodreads.  Hmm, this is getting dangerous.

 

 

I'm glad you read it. BAW boardies discussed it last year to almost universal praise, but I just recently picked it up. After I finished, there was a bit of kicking myself over waiting so long to read it. I have a "BAWx2" shelf in my Goodreads account whenever a book is recommended by multiple boardies.

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<snip>

 

Now You See Me by SJ Bolton

 

I'll be taking a nap on the Detectives Bus  ... wake me when we get to Cambridgeshire.

 

Uh oh. Now I have two London books requested at the library.  Both are listed as "on the shelf" so I could have them tomorrow... or later today if I run by and grab them before they're pulled for my request.  Since it's my husband's birthday and dessert isn't settled yet, I'd better not make a library run right now.  

 

:-)

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Uh oh. Now I have two London books requested at the library.  Both are listed as "on the shelf" so I could have them tomorrow... or later today if I run by and grab them before they're pulled for my request.  Since it's my husband's birthday and dessert isn't settled yet, I'd better not make a library run right now.  

 

:-)

 

Go get the books and pick up a store bought cake for your DH. You can have the book finished by the time he gets home and nobody will know.

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The Wizard and the Prophet: Two Remarkable Scientists and their Dueling Visions to Shape Tomorrow's World by Charles Mann (ebook) - I absolutely loved 1491 by this author, and also really liked 1493 - even though I'm not very far into the book yet, I think this will be another hit for me.  Just have to finish the chunkster before Overdrive wants it back!

 

 

I've put this on my TBR list. Borlaug was an amazing scientist, created with saving millions of lives from starvation. Since I learned of him, I've had his biography on my "want to read when I find the right book" list. For my fellow former students, he also spent his last few decades at Texas A&M and The Institute for International Agriculture is named for him. 

 

ETA: Fixed web link.

Edited by ErinE
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Without meaning to I've started the mystery tour with y'all by reading a Scotland Yard novel. It was a splendid read, too! Original Sin by PD James. The mystery is set in a publishing house on the Thames, downriver by the Docklands. One of the incidental characters is an aging mystery writer who has lost her knack. I had such a sense of deja vu reading it, and realized I must have read it before, but didn't remember enough to spoil the outcome.  

 

Still listening to, and thoroughly enjoying West with the Night

 

 

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I ended up abandoning two books last night. I got 100 pages into one and 50 pages into the other and just couldn't do it.

 

Murder Comes to Mind by Joan Smith

 

In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen

 

Reading shouldn't be an unpleasant chore. Just sent DH to the library and I expect he'll come back with something I'm interested in.

 

 

 

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I ended up abandoning two books last night. I got 100 pages into one and 50 pages into the other and just couldn't do it.

 

 

In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen

 

Reading shouldn't be an unpleasant chore. Just sent DH to the library and I expect he'll come back with something I'm interested in.

 

Ugh. I grabbed that one from Amazon because it was free. I'm usually leery of free Kindle books but because she's the author of Her Royal Spyness series I thought it would be good. No?

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I've only read two books so far this year, The Magnolia Story and Mansfield Park.  LOVED The Magnolia Story.  Still find Mansfield Park Grrr & Blah.

 

We have been helping out a mom in crisis by keeping her two little girls (6 and 2) for about 9 hours a day.  Lots of changes and adjustments, little extra time to read!

 

Currently I'm reading Persuasion and listening to The Eye of the World and Talking as Fast as I Can and my read aloud with the 6yo is The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.

 

I felt the same way about Mansfield Park, until I listened to a dramatized version starring Benedict Cumberbatch and David Tennant. I finally enjoyed the story!

 

Ugh. I grabbed that one from Amazon because it was free. I'm usually leery of free Kindle books but because she's the author of Her Royal Spyness series I thought it would be good. No?

 

I read In Farleigh Field last summer at the beach - I probably grabbed the same free Kindle version. I enjoyed it, but then I don't usually read in the mystery/thriller genre, so my tastes may be a bit unformed.. ;)

 

BAW is definitely getting me to read different books. Thanks for all of the fabulous recommendations here! I've added in The Man in the Queue by Josephine Tey, and I am really enjoying her use of language.

 

(My first multi-quote!)

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I ended up abandoning two books last night. I got 100 pages into one and 50 pages into the other and just couldn't do it.

 

Murder Comes to Mind by Joan Smith

 

In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen

 

Reading shouldn't be an unpleasant chore. Just sent DH to the library and I expect he'll come back with something I'm interested in.

Ugh. I grabbed that one from Amazon because it was free. I'm usually leery of free Kindle books but because she's the author of Her Royal Spyness series I thought it would be good. No?

I think I have that one on my Kindle too! I like her Evans books fwiw.

 

I have accomplished very little today other than feeding my family because I can’t make up my mind which book to read. I started two during the night .....I started a Maisie Dobbs mystery that is due to be returned in a couple of days. I like it so need to keep reading! Also my planned Deborah Crombie is started(not great)is on my kindle and walks around the house with me. Progress on both while feeding people. 😀

 

The book that seems to be the big distracting draw is a paper book that computer programs love to recommend to me so it must be good, right? It has been being recommended since my big cozy kick a couple of years ago regularly. I checked The Affair of the Bloodstained Egg Cozy out of the library a few weeks ago to try and figure out the setting/county. Today was the day as I plan to go to the library on Thursday with a bag of returns.. I still have no idea which county beyond the first bit is in London but am beyond halfway. No serious idea who did it because my main suspect is now dead. It’s a house party mystery set in the 20’s. It actually has an inspector with Scotland Yard connections. It’s gentle and not the least bit thrilling so not sure why I keep reading.https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1793992.The_Affair_of_the_Blood_Stained_Egg_Cosy

Edited by mumto2
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Ugh. I grabbed that one from Amazon because it was free. I'm usually leery of free Kindle books but because she's the author of Her Royal Spyness series I thought it would be good. No?

 

It got decent reviews and I liked Spyness but ... meh. The characters did nothing for me. I actively disliked most of them from the beginning and they were all stereotypical stock characters. For example, the father was this traditional 'stiff upper lip' lord. He gets mad at his daughter (11 yo) about associating with a boy from London, who he didn't recognize even though he was the one that sent him to live with the gardener, because it was beneath him to recognize a cockney boy. Then he goes on to complain about never getting kippers at breakfast. Right. London is in shambles, all the men are at war, and this guy is worried about his kippers. Nope.  

 

Except everyone is like that. The 11 yo is plucky. Another sister is spoiled. Another one is the good one. One of the maids just talks about flirting with soldiers. The housekeeper's entire purpose on the page is to criticize the housemaid for flirting with the soldiers.  And that's their whole personality.

Edited by aggieamy
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I felt the same way about Mansfield Park, until I listened to a dramatized version starring Benedict Cumberbatch and David Tennant. I finally enjoyed the story!

 

 

I read In Farleigh Field last summer at the beach - I probably grabbed the same free Kindle version. I enjoyed it, but then I don't usually read in the mystery/thriller genre, so my tastes may be a bit unformed.. ;)

 

BAW is definitely getting me to read different books. Thanks for all of the fabulous recommendations here! I've added in The Man in the Queue by Josephine Tey, and I am really enjoying her use of language.

 

(My first multi-quote!)

Mansfield Park is on my list of books to listen to soon. I am now looking forward to it. I love David Tennant.......so just need to find the one he narrates.

 

Glad you are enjoying The Man in the Queue. It’s on my list for this week/or at least soon also but as a reread. Planning to read the Tey books in order of publication too.

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I ended up abandoning two books last night. I got 100 pages into one and 50 pages into the other and just couldn't do it.

 

Murder Comes to Mind by Joan Smith

 

In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen

 

Reading shouldn't be an unpleasant chore. Just sent DH to the library and I expect he'll come back with something I'm interested in.

 

Thanks for the heads up! I was this close to buying the kindle of In Farleigh Field but just couldn't do it. Whew!  

 

and that's disappointing about the Joan Smith book - I keep hoping something of hers will be as charming as Imprudent Lady. 

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6. "Rethinking School: How to Take Charge of Your Child's Education" by Susan Wise Bauer.  I left so many bookmarks in this book!  Now I'm checking my local library for some of the resources she mentions.

 

5. "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" by J.K. Rowling.  The kids' choice for an audio book on our drive out of state last weekend.  We didn't quite finish "Chamber of Secrets," coming back, so we'll have to listen at bedtime for a while, or think up a good Sunday drive.  Hey, this is British!  And partially takes place in London!  I'm "Brit Tripping" and I didn't even know!

 

4. "Guerrilla Learning: How to give your kids a real education with or without school" by Grace Llewellyn and Amy Silver.  I read this many years ago, when we were first considering homeschooling.  I was a natural student myself, so I found it kind of "out there" the first time.  All three of my kids have different learning styles than I do, so I reread it for the alternative ways of learning it suggests.  So now my question is, can I expand my thinking enough to find sort of unschooly, non-traditional ways of presenting really robust, critical-thinking, classical ideas?

 

3. "Monkey Mind: A Memoir of Anxiety" by Daniel Smith.  Some adult content.  The event in question was a major contributor to his anxiety, so the story wouldn't be as powerful without it.  I have to say I agree with his mother, though.  He was underage, under the influence, and had definitely been groomed.

 

2. "Mother had a Secret: Learning to love My Mother & Her Multiple Personalities" by Tiffany Fletcher.  Well-written, which is a nice surprise.  The author happens to be LDS, but unlike most LDS memoirs I've read, her compelling story and good writing drive the book forward, rather than her LDSness.  

 

1. "Life's lessons Learned" by Dallin H. Oaks. (LDS)  Unusual format for him.  Each chapter has an unrelated short story from the author's life, and then ends with a sentence with what he learned from it.

Edited by Maus
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6. "Rethinking School: How to Take Charge of Your Child's Education" by Susan Wise Bauer. I left so many bookmarks in this book! Now I'm checking my local library for some of the resources she mentions.

 

5. "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" by J.K. Rowling. The kids' choice for an audio book on our drive out of state last weekend. We didn't quite finish "Chamber of Secrets," coming back, so we'll have to listen at bedtime for a while, or think up a good Sunday drive. Hey, this is British! And partially takes place in London! I'm "Brit Tripping" and I didn't even know!

 

4. "Guerrilla Learning: How to give your kids a real education with or without school" by Grace Llewellyn and Amy Silver. I read this many years ago, when we were first considering homeschooling. I was a natural student myself, so I found it kind of "out there" the first time. All three of my kids have different learning styles than I do, so I reread it for the alternative ways of learning it suggests. So now my question is, can I expand my thinking enough to find sort of unschooly, non-traditional ways of presenting really robust, critical-thinking, classical ideas?

 

3. "Monkey Mind: A Memoir of Anxiety" by Daniel Smith. Some adult content. The event in question was a major contributor to his anxiety, so the story wouldn't be as powerful without it. I have to say I agree with his mother, though. He was underage, under the influence, and had definitely been groomed.

 

2. "Mother had a Secret: Learning to love My Mother & Her Multiple Personalities" by Tiffany Fletcher. Well-written, which is a nice surprise. The author happens to be LDS, but unlike most LDS memoirs I've read, her compelling story and good writing drive the book forward, rather than her LDSness.

 

1. "Life's lessons Learned" by Dallin H. Oaks. (LDS) Unusual format for him. Each chapter has an unrelated short story from the author's life, and then ends with a sentence with what he learned from it.

The Harry Potter books visit many counties before they finish. Sorcerer’s Stone covers both London and Surrey. Chamber of Secrets adds in Devon. After that I believe several more counties start appearing. Librarything lists them. :)http://www.librarything.com/work/5403381/commonknowledge/

 

I finished my cozy mystery with egg cozy in the title. Really good. Do you know what an egg cozy is? Yes, I actually do have patterns thanks to my Simply Knitting subscription but dislike soft boiled eggs so will never use them.https://www.loveknitting.com/santa-hat-egg-cosy-knitting-pattern-by-amanda-berry

Edited by mumto2
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I ended up abandoning two books last night. I got 100 pages into one and 50 pages into the other and just couldn't do it.

 

Murder Comes to Mind by Joan Smith

 

In Farleigh Field by Rhys Bowen

 

Reading shouldn't be an unpleasant chore. Just sent DH to the library and I expect he'll come back with something I'm interested in.

Gissing's New Grub Street is set in London and a satisfyingly page-turning read. The characters are sympathetic and multi-dimensional; no villains, just different kinds of people. And it's all about books and writing, which should give it appeal to BaW readers. Just saying.

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Gissing's New Grub Street is set in London and a satisfyingly page-turning read. The characters are sympathetic and multi-dimensional; no villains, just different kinds of people. And it's all about books and writing, which should give it appeal to BaW readers. Just saying.

 

Were you reading my mind, VC?  Just last night I was feeling the need to add a Victorian tome or two to my reading diet, and wondering whether to return to Dickens or try someone else. And here you present someone else, someone hitherto unknown to me, George Gissing. 

 

In reading about him, I came across this NYT article from 1991, marking the centennial anniversary of the publication of New Grub Street

 

ETA:  Violet Crown warns that the first few paragraphs of the article contain major spoilers. Reader, beware!

Edited by JennW in SoCal
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I felt the same way about Mansfield Park, until I listened to a dramatized version starring Benedict Cumberbatch and David Tennant. I finally enjoyed the story!

 

 

 

 

 

Well, I would love listening to David Tennant but I don't know that I'd enjoy the story!!

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Were you reading my mind, VC? Just last night I was feeling the need to add a Victorian tome or two to my reading diet, and wondering whether to return to Dickens or try someone else. And here you present someone else, someone hitherto unknown to me, George Gissing.

 

In reading about him, I came across this NYT article from 1991, marking the centennial anniversary of the publication of New Grub Street.

I do recommend it! (By the way you might want to add a warning that the NYT article contains a major plot spoiler at the very beginning.)

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I'm a bit embarrassed to admit this but I'm giving a lot of though to abandoning another book. I started Mystery Loves Company by Sheri Cobb-South and I'm not loving it. I'm the opposite of loving it. I'm 150 pages in so I guess I'll finish but then I'm left with the awkward predicament of how to rate it on Goodreads. Maybe I just won't post anything? The author, who is lovely and sweet, sent me an ARC copy over the summer but I didn't read it at the time because it was right after my sister committed suicide and I just couldn't do a murder mystery right then. The book I wanted to read tonight is still stranded behind locked doors at the library so I picked this up because I knew Laura (Mothersweets) was going to read it and it's short enough I could read it on the treadmill in an evening.

 

Laura - Have you started on it yet?

 

Sorry for being such a bummer lately. I've got high hopes for my next read.

Edited by aggieamy
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You all will be proud of me. James and I went to Barnes and Noble on Super Bowl Sunday. I inadvertently and conveniently left my debit card at home. James got some books and one for John which he had to pay for. I didn’t get anything at all. Gasp! I know. James is a great shopping partner because he is very quick and if I don’t insist on stopping to look at books I’m interested in, he zooms through and is done.

 

I’m still plugging away with Soldier of the Great War and the soldiers are massing on the border of Austria. Also still reading Wild Sheep chase. Farting cats and Mediocrity. Philosophy and weirdness. 🤓. James and I are reading A Long Walk to Water which is set during the Sudanese civil war.

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I'm a bit embarrassed to admit this but I'm giving a lot of though to abandoning another book. I started Mystery Loves Company by Sheri Cobb-South and I'm not loving it. I'm the opposite of loving it. I'm 150 pages in so I guess I'll finish but then I'm left with the awkward predicament of how to rate it on Goodreads. Maybe I just won't post anything? The author, who is lovely and sweet, sent me an ARC copy over the summer but I didn't read it at the time because it was right after my sister committed suicide and I just couldn't do a murder mystery right then. The book I wanted to read tonight is still stranded behind locked doors at the library so I picked this up because I knew Laura (Mothersweets) was going to read it and it's short enough I could read it on the treadmill in an evening.

 

Laura - Have you started on it yet?

 

Sorry for being such a bummer lately. I've got high hopes for my next read.

 

Uh-oh. I bought that one (fortunately it was inexpensive) again because I like the series. I had heard she was going to end it after they got married - I think she posted it somewhere. Maybe she should have ended it on a high note.

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I don't have time to read the thread today ( :crying: ), but I wanted to make a note so I don't lose count...I re-read HP and the Half-Blood Prince and HP and the Deathly Hallows this week. I was going through the audio for the first time, but I got impatient towards the end of Order of the Phoenix and just read the last bit of that and the last two. 

 

2/3 of the way through Hillbilly Elegy and have A Man Called Ove on overdrive, waiting.

 

Carry on. :)

 

 

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