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Robin M

Book a Week 2019 - BW25: Happy Father's Day

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Happy Sunday and welcome to week twenty-five in our 52 Books rambling roads reading adventure. Greetings to all our readers, welcome to all who are joining in for the first time and everyone following our progress. Visit  52 Books in 52 Weeks where you can find all the information on the annual, mini and perpetual challenges, as well as the central spot to share links to your book reviews. 


My Father, My Friend

 by 

 Peggy Stewart

 

For my father, my friend,
This to me you have always been.
Through the good times and the bad,
Your understanding I have had.
A gentle man at heart,
This sets you apart
From the others I've seen.
You mean so much to me.
The laughter we have shared
Cannot be compared.
The tears I have shed, 
As you lovingly nodded your head.
You have always been there,
With a smile and a hug,
A precious gift from our God up above.
he times that I have been down and sad,
Your silly ways could always make me glad.
You gave me strength to carry on,
Even when all hope seemed to be gone.
The lessons in life that I have learned
Are from your genuine love and concern.
With deep appreciation for all you have done.
You, Dad,
Are my number one.
With all my love, Your Daughter, Your Friend

Happy Father's day to all our dad's 

Celebrate fatherhood and read a book about a fictional or non-fictional father.  Check out Fantastic Dads and Father Figures, Thirty most memorable literary fathers, as well as Fathers and Sons, and Eleven Powerful Books to Read on Father’s Day.

What are you reading?

Link to week 24

Edited by Robin M
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On my nightstand for this week - Ice Princess by Camilla Lackberg and James and I are reading together Nick of Time: A Nick McIver Time Adventure by Ted Bell.

Last night we watched Wayne's World and it was fun watching James reaction to the movie.  Brought back memories of Saturday Night Live and how great the writing used to be. 

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Still not all the way settled in new place but almost there.

Books:

"Twenty-one Days" by Anne Perry - this is a take off from the Thomas Pitt series. Now Pitt's son Daniel is the central character.

"The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen Covey - this is also a re-read but I felt I needed a refresher.

Audio:

"Lonestar Angel" by Coble. Have read it before, now I am listening to it during commute. Almost finished.

"Never Again Good-by" by Terri Blackstock - next on tap

"Private Justice" by Terri Blackstock - next in line

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Still haven't gotten to last week's thread. More life stuff coming fast and furious. But meanwhile, I read a book loaned by Middle Girl: Up To My Armpits: Adventures of a West Texas Veterinarian, by Dr. Charlie Edwards. Great reading! Pretty much unedited, so rough in places, but keeping lots of West Texas vernacular, super-dry humor, and charm. Edwards practiced from the late '40s through the '90s, and saw the devastation of the 1950's Big Drouth (which Middle Girl first learned about in Lois Lenski's Texas Tomboy, which I make everyone read as part of their Texas History unit) and the many changes brought by weather, demographic shifts, technological improvements, and the gradual passing of the last of the Old West.

Favorite story: Dr. Edwards is applying pesticide to a herd, where the hands shove the cows into a chute, Dr. Edwards pours the "Ivomec Pour-On" all over the cow's back, and then, released, she dashes forward into the pen to lose herself among the already-treated cows. One cow balks, and the vet's assistant touches her with the electric cattle prod. She springs forward. "We watched in amazement as she burst into flames, the solvent in the Ivomec burning. She was headed for the bunch of cows.... We stood helpless, fearing the worst. Only Topper [the ranch manager] had the presence of mind to shout instructions, 'Lie down and roll, you dumb cow!' I don't guess she heard, because she didn't even slow down." Fortunately the stuff is super-volatile and scorches the cow's hair without burning her skin, and goes out before she sets the other cows alight. The hands, being cowboys, then attempt to re-create the flaming cow incident for the benefit of their friends who missed it. Dr. Edwards is only able to make them stop by pointing out how expensive the Ivomec Pour-On is. 5 stars. 10x10 category: Don't Mess With Texas.

Back to Real Literature (TM) with Jonson and Dostoevsky.

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Last week, I kept wanting to visit this thread more often than I did and to catch up, as well as to catch up on sharing some of our Spain vacation pictures. I'll try to come here more this week.  Things have just been so busy since we returned. 

Here's a picture of a beautiful concert hall in Barcelona - the Palau de la Musica Catalana - if any of you visit Barcelona, this place is gorgeous. Pictures cannot do it justice. What's even better, is to try to also go to a concert, which we did. The concert (four incredible guitarists) was amazing!

5d24defe0faa9af36bf42a83c0f82c24.jpg

On our last evening in Barcelona, we had a night tour of Casa Mila (La Pedrera) - one of the Gaudi homes. The day visit was lovely, but the night visit was spectacular. This is a picture that we took on the rooftop. They had a lovely light show. 

ee7d99449369f4b851f590fde78db50e.jpg

I read Forty Autumns: A Family's Story of Courage and Survival on Both Sides of the Berlin Wall - 5 Stars - I love non-fiction that reads like fiction, and this book was truly remarkable. It’s a true story about a German family separated during the Cold War years. It captures the horrors of living under a totalitarian regime perfectly. I often tell my parents how thankful I am to them for taking us out of Iran when we did. I also feel grateful for not having had to ever live in a Communist country.

The author, writing about her mother’s family, does an incredible job of engaging the reader right from the get-go. I felt a strong connection to them all, and this is not always easy with non-fiction. Another fabulous book that comes to mind is “Nothing to Envy”, which is about life in North Korea.

While reading this, I realized that although I have read so many books about the Holocaust, I haven’t read that many about life under communism. Both systems were absolute nightmares, but communist regimes have killed and tortured far more people. It often surprises me that communism isn’t hated nearly as much as Nazism. These days especially, most people’s focus is on Hitler and labeling anyone that one disagrees with as Hitler or a Nazi Most people are unaware that communist governments have killed an estimated 120 million people in the 20th century. That’s far more than the evil that Hitler did. Don’t get me wrong. Hitler was a monster, but it puzzles me that most of the focus and hatred is towards him. Why not the communist governments and their leaders also?

Since I spoke about this book to my husband constantly, he’s now pushing me to watch a show that he’s been telling me to watch for years, “Deutschland 83”.

Some of my favorite quotes and other parts to share:

“Children were encouraged to report rule breaking at home, such as whether their parents listened to forbidden West German radio or made disparaging remarks about the system. Vigilance in reporting others for their failings came with rewards: public accolades, special treatment, promotions in their youth group, the authorities all the while carefully noting who was and was not fully investing.

What will become of a country, Oma wondered, when a mother cannot even trust her own children, and they, in turn, cannot trust their own families?”

“’The world is infinitely vast and full of wonder,’ he had said. Then, paraphrasing Mark Twain, his favorite American author, he told them to ‘träumen, entdecken, erforschen’—explore, dream, and discover it. That day Hanna came to view the Heidelberg Castle as a symbol of the extraordinary world that lay beyond the lovely but ordinary provincial village of Schwaneberg’.”

“At the height of their power, the Stasi had employed one informant for every sixty-six residents; factoring in part-time informants, the number more accurately approximates one in six East German citizens.”

“… in 1979, a spectacular incident occurred when two families took their escape to the skies. Having fashioned a hot-air balloon from canvas, bedsheets, old scraps of fabric, and a homemade gas burner, Günter Wetzel, a mason, and Peter Strelzyk, a mechanic, and their families ascended into the dark night sky and sailed quietly over the Wall to safety in the West. The escape made headlines around the world, with Strelzyk saying, ‘Freedom is the most valuable thing a human being can possess. The only people who know that are people who have had to live without it. If you’ve grown up free, you don’t know what it means.’ After that escape, the sale of fabric and cloth was closely controlled in East Germany.”

“Gorbachev would tell Honecker, simply, ‘Life punishes those who delay.’”

“’’What is right will always triumph’. —President Ronald Reagan”

If you're interested in seeing my review on Good Reads (with images), here's the link

9780349141367.jpg

MY RATING SYSTEM

5 Stars

The book is fantastic. It’s not perfect, since no book is, but it’s definitely a favorite of mine.

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.

Edited by Negin
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Having liked Avalanche as my snow book, I’m now reading another book in that same series 

 

The Double-Jack Murders: A Sheriff Bo Tully Mystery (Sheriff Bo Tully Mysteries) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B002PMVQ9A/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_fUPbDbKDAV4CG

which I think can qualify under “father” category.

The main character, Bo Tully is an artist and the Sheriff  of “Blight”  county, Idaho.  ( There’s also a town called “Famine” to give a sense of mood.)  Bo’s father, Paps, was a former Sheriff. Paps is working with Bo (and another quirky character, Dave) to deal with a murderer who wants to kill Bo.  At the same time they are also trying to figure out what happened to the long missing father or grandfather of another character ... 

Unusual for sleuths, IME, Bo not only has a living father, who is an active character, but they seem to have a pretty good relationship and to have each other’s back. 

 I don’t think prior books in the series are necessary for reading it.  There’s a dog character in book one which this book gives away what happened to the dog, but by and large they seem to stand alone all right. 

 

Edited by Pen
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@Negin Thank you for the wonderful photos!  Forty Autumns sounds like a fascinating book that I definitely need to find.

It’s been a busy week so not much quilting happening which means I am only 4 hours in to Senlin Ascends https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35271523-senlin-ascends?ac=1&from_search=true which is my current audiobook.  I previously abandoned it in book form because I was horrified that the main character misplaced his bride.  His honeymoon to his dream vacation spot....the Tower of Babel......is a disaster. There is much his guide books forgot to tell him.  In audio form I seem to be loving this book.  So glad I am trying it again!

I finished Big Ship at the Edge of the Universe which was reviewed as a fascinating combination of Sci Fi and magic.  It wasn’t bad but I don’t plan to continue reading the series.  Sort of a “not special enough” rating.  I was reading it jet lagged and in cars etc so I may be wrong.......the book jumped around quite a bit, I had a hard time figuring out what was happening.  which is my major complaint.  Also the characters weren’t quite as compelling as those in Sci Fi series that I have continued to read.  I now have a much needed U for this month’s spelling challenge!  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35520564-a-big-ship-at-the-edge-of-the-universe

I finally started my Guido Brunetti book, Death in a Strange Country.  From my browsing on the internet this one is frequently mentioned as NOT being a favorite.  Sort of put me off but I am also planning to use it in my “10 chain challenge” connecting with Anne Bishop’s Wild Country.  Anyway, I actually am enjoying it so far.  

 

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1 hour ago, Negin said:

 

5d24defe0faa9af36bf42a83c0f82c24.jpg

 

This is stunningly beautiful.  Que lindisima.

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3 hours ago, Negin said:

Here's a picture of a beautiful concert hall in Barcelona - the Palau de la Musica Catalana - if any of you visit Barcelona, this place is gorgeous. Pictures cannot do it justice. What's even better, is to try to also go to a concert, which we did. The concert (four incredible guitarists) was amazing!

5d24defe0faa9af36bf42a83c0f82c24.jpg

 

 

I believe you that The picture cannot do it justice, but the picture took my breath away!

gorgeous!

what was the guitar music?

3 hours ago, Negin said:

On our last evening in Barcelona, we had a night tour of Casa Mila (La Pedrera) - one of the Gaudi homes. The day visit was lovely, but the night visit was spectacular. This is a picture that we took on the rooftop. They had a lovely light show. 

ee7d99449369f4b851f590fde78db50e.jpg

 

 

Im confused about what I’m seeing here.

 Well, I get that it’s Gaudi so that might be major reason for confusion, is it basically a roof area? Somehow with stairs and lit up roof sculptures?

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2 hours ago, mumto2 said:

I finally started my Guido Brunetti book, Death in a Strange Country.  From my browsing on the internet this one is frequently mentioned as NOT being a favorite.  Sort of put me off but I am also planning to use it in my “10 chain challenge” connecting with Anne Bishop’s Wild Country.  Anyway, I actually am enjoying it so far.  

 

 

I liked Death in a Strange Country quite well as I recall!  It was the first that dealt with environmental themes. Also introduced Vianello character, and had the beginnings of interesting personal family life

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9 minutes ago, Pen said:

I believe you that The picture cannot do it justice, but the picture took my breath away!

gorgeous!

what was the guitar music?

Im confused about what I’m seeing here.

 Well, I get that it’s Gaudi so that might be major reason for confusion, is it basically a roof area? Somehow with stairs and lit up roof sculptures?

Thank you. I'll clarify. I should have done so earlier!

First, the Palau de la Musica Catalana is :the only European concert hall to be illuminated entirely by natural light.". The stained glass ceiling is the highlight of the place, but it's all beautiful. 

2219c3248646608541222c1096d6aef1.jpg

This is a clip of what we saw. Gorgeous music. I was almost in tears, but I often get emotional. 

Let me get back to you on your other question about Gaudi later. Dinner is calling!

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I read The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver.  It was sitting on my shelf and I avoided it because I was not sure that I would like it.  I found the beginning a bit slow but then I really got into it.  I loved the writing and the characters!  Which of her other novels were best?  

I also read most of 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari.  I like books that try to predict what life will be like in the future.

 

 

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1 hour ago, Negin said:

Thank you. I'll clarify. I should have done so earlier!

First, the Palau de la Musica Catalana is :the only European concert hall to be illuminated entirely by natural light.". The stained glass ceiling is the highlight of the place, but it's all beautiful. 

2219c3248646608541222c1096d6aef1.jpg

This is a clip of what we saw. Gorgeous music. I was almost in tears, but I often get emotional. 

Let me get back to you on your other question about Gaudi later. Dinner is calling!

 

Thanks!  I listened to 2 more longer YouTube videos of  them!

 

i guess I better get to dinner too

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40 minutes ago, Teaching3bears said:

I read The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver.  It was sitting on my shelf and I avoided it because I was not sure that I would like it.  I found the beginning a bit slow but then I really got into it.  I loved the writing and the characters!  Which of her other novels were best?  

 

I liked her Bean Trees  

And

Animal Dreams

also the nonfiction book about her family trying to eat only local in season food for a year

 

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I finished 2 books last week.

Autumn Term by Antonia Forest- A boarding school book set in England in the 30s? maybe, the characters had depth and the writing was good. I'd love to read the next in the series but I'm not seeing it anywhere.

The Sentence is Death by Anthony Horowitz - Second in his Hawthorne series. I enjoyed it and, as usual, didn't figure out the killer at all!

 

Negin, love the photos and the concert must have been delightful! I'm going right over to my library and place a hold on Forty Autumns - sounds like a terrific read.

 

Robin, I had my teens watch Wayne's World with me earlier this year and they loved it! Party on! lol

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9 hours ago, Robin M said:

James and I are reading together Nick of Time: A Nick McIver Time Adventure by Ted Bell.

My DD loved the books (audio) we could get in this series.  Fun!

 
 
 
 
3
8 hours ago, Liz CA said:

Still not all the way settled in new place but almost there.  Well done.  Hope the journey hasn't been too pain filled!

Books:

"The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen Covey - this is also a re-read but I felt I needed a refresher.  I really like this book!!

Audio:

"Never Again Good-by" by Terri Blackstock - next on tap  This in on my line-up ......

 

8 hours ago, Violet Crown said:

Up To My Armpits: Adventures of a West Texas Veterinarian, by Dr. Charlie Edwards. Great reading!

Sounds like a book Dd and I would both enjoy!  

@Negin the photos are gorgeous.  Thanks for sharing 😍  (Off to hunt up your 5* book.  Great review)

 
 
 
 
3
7 hours ago, mumto2 said:

I finally started my Guido Brunetti book, Death in a Strange Country.  From my browsing on the internet this one is frequently mentioned as NOT being a favorite.  Sort of put me off but I am also planning to use it in my “10 chain challenge” connecting with Anne Bishop’s Wild Country.  Anyway, I actually am enjoying it so far. 

My Brunetti was a non-favourite title for many; I enjoyed it.  Your title got @Pen's vote too, so I'm adding it to my wish list.

 

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3 hours ago, Mothersweets said:

Autumn Term by Antonia Forest- A boarding school book set in England in the 30s? maybe, the characters had depth and the writing was good. I'd love to read the next in the series but I'm not seeing it anywhere

Sounds interesting.  Hoping you can procure the next book to read and review .... 

@Teaching3bears  I'm a non-completer with both the books you mentioned.  Love this group,  such a diversity of reading tastes!

Thank you @Kareni  for those links, looking forward to rabbit trailing later, like others here it's now prep for tea time....

Edited by tuesdayschild
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Tossing up my books read, and, reading now...

Completed: 

  • KJV Habakkuk
  • Surfeit of Lampreys ~ Ngaio Marsh, narrated by Philip Franks (4)  NZ         Repeat listen.  I had forgotten how gruesome the murder and the witchcraft "spell' in this book were (a skewer through an eye, and, then a hand being sawn off)  .... still, an interesting read; and, as it counts towards my reading challenge   I didn't want to drop it and start something else. 
  • 30/05 - 17/06       Spies of No Country:  Secret Lives at the Birth of Israel ~ Matti Friedman, narrated by Simon Vance (3++)  ( 6hrs 2mins)            A rather sobering read about post WWII Hebrew spies who tried to navigate through extreme hardship – they were required to live in abject poverty, physical danger - many were killed, and debilitating loneliness without training or any real support.  Kim by Rudyard Kipling is mentioned quite a bit, I want to dust off that book and endeavour to read it to the end this time.      I had just finished reading Habakkuk in the bible and one of the young men in this book is also named Habakkuk: the author notes that both Habakkuk’s displayed a similar passion and mindset towards their ‘country’  – they did.  Though the topics in this book are challenging, the author doesn’t present it with gratuitous violence.   I can’t remember any swearing, though one of the spies keeps lambasting others in Russian,  so I’m not quite sure what he was saying 😉    

Currently reading/listening to:

  • The Mystery of Three Quarters:  A Hercule Poirot Mystery Bk3  ~ Sophie Hannah narrated by Julian Rhind-Tutt   (cosy-mystery, late night listening.  I’ve been sip listening to this since April)

After last week’s BaW thread  I now have  a few brand new to me reads I want to get to; well,  once I’ve finished this month’s bookology spelling challenge  🙂 .   The next two books are the ones I’m working on to complete that:  The Little Grey Men ~ ‘BB’  ( @Lori D.  is exactly right, it’s a bit twee for the first three chapters, but the tale thereafter is worth it.)

Thank you to the BaW who mentioned this a while back, it’s a very encouraging read   Anxious for Nothing:  Finding Calm in a Chaotic World ~ Max Lucado, narrated by Ben Holland (cc)   The first chapter had some really interesting facts in it that I want to check out.  I then skipped through some of Max’s personal stories and over the ‘plan of salvation’ portion in part one of the audio, and am now away again in chapter 4 (part 2 on audio).

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5 hours ago, Mothersweets said:

I finished 2 books last week.

Autumn Term by Antonia Forest- A boarding school book set in England in the 30s? maybe, the characters had depth and the writing was good. I'd love to read the next in the series but I'm not seeing it anywhere.

The Sentence is Death by Anthony Horowitz - Second in his Hawthorne series. I enjoyed it and, as usual, didn't figure out the killer at all!

 

Negin, love the photos and the concert must have been delightful! I'm going right over to my library and place a hold on Forty Autumns - sounds like a terrific read.

 

Robin, I had my teens watch Wayne's World with me earlier this year and they loved it! Party on! lol

The Sentence is Death is on my hold’s list.  I have been looking forward to it and glad to read your good review.

@tuesdayschild From a prior week’s conversation.......I just finished reading The Veiled Lady by Agatha Christie and really enjoyed it.  Very short and clever.  

@Violet Crown I enjoyed the sheep story.........

Edited by mumto2
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8 hours ago, Teaching3bears said:

I read The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver.  It was sitting on my shelf and I avoided it because I was not sure that I would like it.  I found the beginning a bit slow but then I really got into it.  I loved the writing and the characters!  

I loved "The Poisonwood Bible". I've read a few others by her, but that one stands out for me. 

7 hours ago, Pen said:

Thanks!  I listened to 2 more longer YouTube videos of  them!

I'll explain the rooftop. It's the roof on Casa Mila (La Pedrera), which is one of Gaudi's best works. Here's the rooftop - taken during our morning visit. 

5297c0b1fbfe7a9fdb9cd870b5204c74.jpg

There are tiled chimneys, which reminds many of Star Wars. There are 30 chimneys and ventilation towers.

a02c7910be520525e08131846aedb5d7.jpg

The picture that I had in my first post showed our night visit with the light show. Both visits were fabulous, but the night one was superb. 

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10 hours ago, Teaching3bears said:

I read The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver.  It was sitting on my shelf and I avoided it because I was not sure that I would like it.  I found the beginning a bit slow but then I really got into it.  I loved the writing and the characters!  Which of her other novels were best?  

I also read most of 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari.  I like books that try to predict what life will be like in the future.

 

 

The Poisonwood Bible is a book that has sat unread on my nightstand for at least two years.  Obviously I am unsure......I really need to try to actually read it this summer!

11 hours ago, Pen said:

 

 

I liked Death in a Strange Country quite well as I recall!  It was the first that dealt with environmental themes. Also introduced Vianello character, and had the beginnings of interesting personal family life

Just finished Death in a Strange Country and actually really loved it.  In part because I suspect it is setting up some great stories in the future.😉 I went ahead and rounded up and gave it 5 stars over on Goodreads.  The negatives I had read mainly had to do with the books treatment of Americans which I think were amplified by the readers knowing the author is an expat.  As a fellow expat, she was a bit harsh but I am not sure which culture was presented worse in the end......

I have two 10 book Chains in progress............Death in a Strange Country is the 7th book in one of my chains.  Woot! My next book fo the chain will be Dressed for Death by Donna Leon.  I guess I will chain Death for book 8 and either read another Donna Leon for book 9 or chain using Dressed.  Lots of cozies with Dressed in the title.  My chain so far...........

1.  Broken Ice by Matt Goldman

2. The Ice Princess by Camilla Lackberg

3. The Princess and the Pea by Victoria Alexander

4. A Murder for the Books by Victoria Gilbert

5. Murder of Crows by Anne Bishop

6. Wild Country by Anne Bishop

7. Death in a Strange Country by Donna Leon

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15 hours ago, mumto2 said:

I have two 10 book Chains in progress............Death in a Strange Country is the 7th book in one of my chains

Well done!!!

& repeating my goodreads comment here 😉  seeing your 5* review, I might have to get this as a print version at some stage, the narrator absolutely ruined my first go through it.

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14 hours ago, mumto2 said:

The Poisonwood Bible is a book that has sat unread on my nightstand for at least two years.  Obviously I am unsure......I really need to try to actually read it this summer!

Just finished Death in a Strange Country and actually really loved it.  In part because I suspect it is setting up some great stories in the future.😉 I went ahead and rounded up and gave it 5 stars over on Goodreads.  The negatives I had read mainly had to do with the books treatment of Americans which I think were amplified by the readers knowing the author is an expat.  As a fellow expat, she was a bit harsh but I am not sure which culture was presented worse in the end......

I have two 10 book Chains in progress............Death in a Strange Country is the 7th book in one of my chains.  Woot! My next book fo the chain will be Dressed for Death by Donna Leon.  I guess I will chain Death for book 8 and either read another Donna Leon for book 9 or chain using Dressed.  Lots of cozies with Dressed in the title.  My chain so far...........

1.  Broken Ice by Matt Goldman

2. The Ice Princess by Camilla Lackberg

3. The Princess and the Pea by Victoria Alexander

4. A Murder for the Books by Victoria Gilbert

5. Murder of Crows by Anne Bishop

6. Wild Country by Anne Bishop

7. Death in a Strange Country by Donna Leon

 

R u connecting #8 by author name or “Death”?

if by author still leaving “death” there are obviously many options, but consider “Death of a Hollow Man” by Caroline Graham

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Hi Everyone! I took an internet break for a couple of months and now I'm back catching up on all of the BaW threads! I can't remember what I was reading when I last posted, but I think these are what I've covered in the meantime. I've missed you guys and hope all is well with everyone! 

April- June reads. 

Reread Wolf Hall. And Bringing Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel. Again. because she can't seem to finish the Mirror and the Light!!!!😊

Thinner, Leaner, Stronger by Michael Matthews- 4/5 stars (good if you are trying to up your weight lifting game) 

I then went through the Six Tudor Queens series- or at least those completed to date- by Alison Weir. This is probably my new favorite historical fiction series. 

Katherine of Aragon: The True Queen- 5/5 stars

Anne Boleyn: A King's Obsession- 4/5 stars

Jane Seymour: The Haunted Queen- 5/5 stars

Anna of Kleve: The Princess in the Portrait- 5/5

The Royal Art of Poison: Filthy Palaces, Fatal Cosmetics, Deadly Medicine, and Murder Most Foul by Eleanor Herman-  4/5 stars. This one was fun and quick, but presented a few too many things as fact when I've read enough history to know many of these aren't settled matters and it was conjecture on the author's part. Still fun though. And gross. 

Can't Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins- 5/5. This is probably the best book I've read this year. David Goggins is amazing. I will definitely reread this one. If you are sensitive to the F word, you might want to skip out, but otherwise, this is a book I'm recommending to everyone. He is truly an inspiration of what someone can overcome and accomplish when they put their mind to it. 

Living with a SEAL by Jesse Itzler. 5/5 stars. This book relays the tale of Jesse Itzler hiring David Goggins (pre Can't Hurt Me) to live with him and his family for 31 days to spice up Jesse's work outs and push him out of his comfort zone with his life. Hilarious book. 

Lessons From Lucy: The Simple Joys of an Old, Happy Dog by Dave Barry- 5/5 stars. I love everything Dave Barry writes, so I'm hardly impartial. 

Living with Monks by Jesse Itzler- 2/5 stars, and that was being generous. This was definitely no Living with a SEAL. I wish I could reclaim the time. 

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance- 4/5 stars. 

I Am the Central Park Jogger: A Story of Hope and Possibility by Trisha Meili- 5/5 stars

Final Jeopardy by Linda Fairstein- 3/5 stars

The Scholar (Cormac Reilly #2) by Dervla McTiernan- 3/5

Currently reading: 

Wrecked (IQ #3) by Joe Ide (on Audible) 

The Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe 

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Æthelthryth, (interestingly, no matter how I type or copy n paste your name in the @ notifier doesn't work 😉)  good to see you back.  Nice reading list too!!  My Ds really wants me to read the Elon Musk book, and seeing your rating here is encouraging me to pull it forward as one of this years reads.   I have Alison Weir's The Lost Tudor Princess (n/f) on stand by but the reviews on goodreads aren't enticing me to start it, do you have that Weir book lined up in your reading sights?

**

I started this in April, just finished yesterday: The Mystery of Three Quarters: A Hercule Poirot Mystery Bk3 ~ Sophie Hannah narrated by Julian Rhind-Tutt   (2-3)  Cosy-mystery. Late night listening which was well narrated.  So long as I reminded myself that this is a book featuring Hercule Poirot, and was written by another author, the storyline and I managed to rub along okay.  Not brilliantly though as the telling of the mystery is a bit longwinded and would really annoy me in a daytime listen/read.  I found the murderer pretty easy to identify, though not all the intricate reasoning behind the case/s.  This is a one-off listen for me, and not one I want for my keeping library.

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21 hours ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Can't Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins- 5/5. This is probably the best book I've read this year. David Goggins is amazing. I will definitely reread this one. If you are sensitive to the F word, you might want to skip out, but otherwise, this is a book I'm recommending to everyone. He is truly an inspiration of what someone can overcome and accomplish when they put their mind to it. 

 

 

On my wish list based on your recommendation!

 

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For a question like “what were your favorite books so far in 2019” —do you have a way of keeping track of what you raead when?

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17 minutes ago, Pen said:

For a question like “what were your favorite books so far in 2019” —do you have a way of keeping track of what you read when?

I track everything in Goodreads, and I also have a Word doc with extra info for me to keep track of various challenges (Bingo, A-Z, 10x10, etc.).  To answer the question above, I just went into Goodreads, clicked on this year's books and sorted by star rating - took 2 seconds.

Wow, I'm such a nerd. 🤓

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3 hours ago, tuesdayschild said:

Æthelthryth, (interestingly, no matter how I type or copy n paste your name in the @ notifier doesn't work 😉)  good to see you back.  Nice reading list too!!  My Ds really wants me to read the Elon Musk book, and seeing your rating here is encouraging me to pull it forward as one of this years reads.   I have Alison Weir's The Lost Tudor Princess (n/f) on stand by but the reviews on goodreads aren't enticing me to start it, do you have that Weir book lined up in your reading sights?

**

I do not yet, but I will definitely return to her. I was thinking of reading her book on Henry VIII as my next of her works. If you read Lost Princess, you’ll have to let me know how it is. I know it was historical fiction, but she made me love Katherine of Aragon who who I’ve only ever glossed part before. 

 I went Tudor heavy for a bit so I had to make myself shift to something else or I’d never leave that era. 🙂  But I’ll be most likely be returning soon after I finish these tales of gritty streets of NY in Bonfire of the Vanities. 

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3 hours ago, Pen said:

For a question like “what were your favorite books so far in 2019” —do you have a way of keeping track of what you raead when?

Another Goodreads fan here. I’d be lost without it! 

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7 hours ago, Matryoshka said:

I track everything in Goodreads, and I also have a Word doc with extra info for me to keep track of various challenges (Bingo, A-Z, 10x10, etc.).  To answer the question above, I just went into Goodreads, clicked on this year's books and sorted by star rating - took 2 seconds.

Wow, I'm such a nerd. 🤓

 

7 hours ago, Pen said:

For a question like “what were your favorite books so far in 2019” —do you have a way of keeping track of what you raead when?

Another Goodreads fan,  For my quick sort of challenges I use different Goodreads shelves.  I also have a notebook that I use plan and to keep track of challenges,  my shelves show all qualifiers and my notebook has what I plan to count.  Of course I write in erasable ink!😂

Tudors are my favorites!  I will confess that Alison Weir has never been a favorite but I think my complaints regarding my last attempt at one of her books centered on font size.  I need to try again on my kindle!  I went off hunting and I ran into a recommendation list for Tudor fiction which has some I haven’t read https://www.bookbub.com/blog/new-historical-fiction-tudor-era.  

 

 

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@mumto2 to be fair, I listened to every single one on Audible. The narrator was fantastic, especially with the accents for Katherine and later Anna, so that may have been a part of why I loved the books so much. A good narrator can definitely impact a book for me. 

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37 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

@mumto2 to be fair, I listened to every single one on Audible. The narrator was fantastic, especially with the accents for Katherine and later Anna, so that may have been a part of why I loved the books so much. A good narrator can definitely impact a book for me. 

😂I will admit that I was hoping for audio ........ my current audio book Senlin Ascends is awesome.  I previously abandoned it on Kindlehttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/38603891-senlin-ascends.

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On 6/16/2019 at 2:22 PM, Violet Crown said:

Still haven't gotten to last week's thread. More life stuff coming fast and furious. But meanwhile, I read a book loaned by Middle Girl: Up To My Armpits: Adventures of a West Texas Veterinarian, by Dr. Charlie Edwards. Great reading! Pretty much unedited, so rough in places, but keeping lots of West Texas vernacular, super-dry humor, and charm. Edwards practiced from the late '40s through the '90s, and saw the devastation of the 1950's Big Drouth (which Middle Girl first learned about in Lois Lenski's Texas Tomboy, which I make everyone read as part of their Texas History unit) and the many changes brought by weather, demographic shifts, technological improvements, and the gradual passing of the last of the Old West.

Favorite story: Dr. Edwards is applying pesticide to a herd, where the hands shove the cows into a chute, Dr. Edwards pours the "Ivomec Pour-On" all over the cow's back, and then, released, she dashes forward into the pen to lose herself among the already-treated cows. One cow balks, and the vet's assistant touches her with the electric cattle prod. She springs forward. "We watched in amazement as she burst into flames, the solvent in the Ivomec burning. She was headed for the bunch of cows.... We stood helpless, fearing the worst. Only Topper [the ranch manager] had the presence of mind to shout instructions, 'Lie down and roll, you dumb cow!' I don't guess she heard, because she didn't even slow down." Fortunately the stuff is super-volatile and scorches the cow's hair without burning her skin, and goes out before she sets the other cows alight. The hands, being cowboys, then attempt to re-create the flaming cow incident for the benefit of their friends who missed it. Dr. Edwards is only able to make them stop by pointing out how expensive the Ivomec Pour-On is. 5 stars. 10x10 category: Don't Mess With Texas.

Back to Real Literature (TM) with Jonson and Dostoevsky.

Oh! I loved that book!! In some ways, reading it was like reading with an anti-Herriot twist. 

Some years back <coughdecadescough> I was on a Texas History (capitalized because history in this context is definitely a proper noun ~ heh) kick. I enjoyed it so much. I should see if I still have some of those books because several of the kids would probably enjoy them. 

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I just finished Mary Shelley: The Strange True Tale of Frankenstein's Creator.  It is a YA biography (although my library currently has it as a juvenile book -- um, no).  I enjoyed the book, but I think it is misnamed.  It isn't really a strange true tale so much as it is a story of her affair with a married man (Shelley), a glimpse into her grief at the deaths of her children, her strained relationship with her family (especially her father and her father-in-law).  It wasn't strange so much as scandalous, especially for the time.

The book told me a lot about Mary Shelley and Percy Bysshe Shelley (and their friend Lord Byron) that I didn't already know.  Unfortunately, it was also information that most people really don't want to know.  

I appreciated that there was no bad language and the material was handled carefully, but this book is much better suited for teens than for children.

Also, there are spoilers in the text regarding the plot lines of her stories.  

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Oh, and a few days ago I Finally finished SWB's The Story of the World Volume 4.  I think Volume 4 took me as long to finish as Volumes 1-3 combined.

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On 6/17/2019 at 7:39 PM, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I took an internet break for a couple of months and now I'm back catching up on all of the BaW threads!

Welcome back!

On 6/18/2019 at 4:51 PM, tuesdayschild said:

Æthelthryth, (interestingly, no matter how I type or copy n paste your name in the @ notifier doesn't work 😉)

Naturally, I also had to try and was unsuccessful.

So, Æthelthryth, how do you create that Æ without simply copying it?

Regards,

Kareni

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It's Thursday and I can finally mention that I've finished a book. For my book group tonight, I read  A Natural History of Dragons: A Memoir by Lady Trent   by Marie Brennan which was my suggestion. I'm very interested to learn what the others thought of it. I found it a light, quick, pleasant read.

 "You, dear reader, continue at your own risk. It is not for the faint of heart—no more so than the study of dragons itself. But such study offers rewards beyond compare: to stand in a dragon's presence, even for the briefest of moments—even at the risk of one's life—is a delight that, once experienced, can never be forgotten. . . .

All the world, from Scirland to the farthest reaches of Eriga, know Isabella, Lady Trent, to be the world's preeminent dragon naturalist. She is the remarkable woman who brought the study of dragons out of the misty shadows of myth and misunderstanding into the clear light of modern science. But before she became the illustrious figure we know today, there was a bookish young woman whose passion for learning, natural history, and, yes, dragons defied the stifling conventions of her day.

Here at last, in her own words, is the true story of a pioneering spirit who risked her reputation, her prospects, and her fragile flesh and bone to satisfy her scientific curiosity; of how she sought true love and happiness despite her lamentable eccentricities; and of her thrilling expedition to the perilous mountains of Vystrana, where she made the first of many historic discoveries that would change the world forever. "

Regards,

Kareni

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2 hours ago, Kareni said:

Welcome back!

Naturally, I also had to try and was unsuccessful.

So, Æthelthryth, how do you create that Æ without simply copying it?

Regards,

Kareni

I'm on a Macbook, so I just hold down the A key and it gives me a several choices of alternate A's with accents, etc. including the Æ! Apparently people say can't @ me, but I can myself, so maybe it's a Macbook thing? I can pull myself up without issue-  @Æthelthryth the Texan

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Tonight I finally had the opportunity to finish Wonder by R.J. Palacio for my Written Too Late category (children's books written after my childhood).

I saw the movie first and I'm glad I did because I was able to get to the end of the story much faster that way.  😉  I think this is an example of a movie enhancing a book.  Both were excellent.

Wonder is about a little boy named Auggie who is going to school for the first time (after being homeschooled! through fourth grade).  He has a genetic birth defect known as Treacher Collins Syndrome which causes a variety of health problems and major facial abnormalities.

Auggie's story is mine, kind of.  I was born with a genetic birth defect called Noonan Syndrome.  My health issues are not nearly as severe as the ones mentioned in the book, and the bullying I received wasn't as bad, but I could definitely relate to Auggie. 

I feel like I have so much to say about this book... and yet the words won't come.

I did not know that I have a birth defect until I was in my 30s.  The diagnosis actually helped me to understand why I always felt "different".  It's because I am different, but not too different.  Part of me wants to go back to my high school and tell everyone off.  "Look at how you treated the girl with the birth defect!"  But, actually, it doesn't really matter if I have a birth defect or not.  "Look at how you treated a human being!"  No one deserves to be bullied.  I do wonder, though, if I would have been treated differently if I were "normal".  Probably not.

 

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31 minutes ago, Junie said:

Tonight I finally had the opportunity to finish Wonder by R.J. Palacio for my Written Too Late category (children's books written after my childhood).

I saw the movie first and I'm glad I did because I was able to get to the end of the story much faster that way.  😉  I think this is an example of a movie enhancing a book.  Both were excellent.

Wonder is about a little boy named Auggie who is going to school for the first time (after being homeschooled! through fourth grade).  He has a genetic birth defect known as Treacher Collins Syndrome which causes a variety of health problems and major facial abnormalities.

Auggie's story is mine, kind of.  I was born with a genetic birth defect called Noonan Syndrome.  My health issues are not nearly as severe as the ones mentioned in the book, and the bullying I received wasn't as bad, but I could definitely relate to Auggie. 

I feel like I have so much to say about this book... and yet the words won't come.

I did not know that I have a birth defect until I was in my 30s.  The diagnosis actually helped me to understand why I always felt "different".  It's because I am different, but not too different.  Part of me wants to go back to my high school and tell everyone off.  "Look at how you treated the girl with the birth defect!"  But, actually, it doesn't really matter if I have a birth defect or not.  "Look at how you treated a human being!"  No one deserves to be bullied.  I do wonder, though, if I would have been treated differently if I were "normal".  Probably not.

 

Wow, I'm not sure what rock I lived under to not have heard about Wonder, but after your post Junie, I'm adding it to my list for sure. I'm sorry you went through what you did. Some people are just mean. Hugs to you and thanks for sharing. 

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@Æthelthryth the Texan   If I read that Alison Weir book, I'll definitely post about it here.  Thanks for the heads-up of the key pad trick you use to help created @ you  ( I just copied and pasted the one you created upthread.)     I can generate  æ, Æ  ( press down together) CTRL+SHIFT+&,  (then by itself) a or A   perfectly on a Microsoft keypad into a document,  but not here on this forum: love documents conundrums like this (nerdy interest).  Wonder if anyone else on the forums knows how.....

I'm glad you had a try to navigate around it too @Kareni   (Thank you for all the rabbit trail links you share, fun way to while away afternoon tea breaks).

@Pen  I'm with @Matryoshka    (laughed at your nerd comment, waving hi on that score too),  Æthelthryth, and @mumto2 :  Goodreads is where I now track all my reading.  I use a word doc too.  

Agreeing that a well narrated audiobook can make a book fly, and a poorly narrated one makes it crash.  

On 6/19/2019 at 12:45 PM, Matryoshka said:

I track everything in Goodreads, and I also have a Word doc with extra info for me to keep track of various challenges (Bingo, A-Z, 10x10, etc.).  To answer the question above, I just went into Goodreads, clicked on this year's books and sorted by star rating - took 2 seconds.

Wow, I'm such a nerd. 🤓

I think @Kareni shared this weekly summertime freebie, audiobooks for teens last yea,   repeat sharing it for anyone that missed it: https://www.audiobooksync.com/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=2019-syncwk9&utm_content=ctatxt   I've got my eye on three audiobooks a few weeks ahead.

@JunieI really appreciate you sharing your personal story with the review of Wonder.  (Those that bullied you really missed out on getting to know a wonderful person.)

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I just twigged listening to a sample of the Horowitz book you mentioned, that he crafted Foyle's War (such a good WWII dvd series).  

On 6/17/2019 at 2:40 PM, Mothersweets said:

The Sentence is Death by Anthony Horowitz

Yay.  I've used a credit and downloaded the audiobook for this.  

**

Just completed  Spring Magic ~ D. E. Stevenson, narrated by Lesley Mackie  (4)  (London, Hertfordshire/ Scotland/  WWII).    This definitely ranks as comfort listening for me.  Vintage, clean romance.     Extra:  Quite a few scenarios of children being emotionally adandoned/neglected, some physcially due to the wars.  The least likeable soldier is a womaniser who is cheating on his wife. Not fussed on the outcome Stevenson gifted to the wife.

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8 hours ago, Kareni said:

Thank you for the links.  Once again you added to the hold’s list!

Just wanted to let you know that the first link is bad but does have me thinking of good dragon books.  One of my favorite dragons appears in the Fred, the Vampire Accountant series.  This series is fun and very witty @aggieamy even enjoyed one. I listen to them.....great narration.

I read the first in the Lady Trent series and felt a bit ambivalent towards it.  I decided not to continue to read this series so am watching to see if you move forward through the series.

5 hours ago, Junie said:

Tonight I finally had the opportunity to finish Wonder by R.J. Palacio for my Written Too Late category (children's books written after my childhood).

I saw the movie first and I'm glad I did because I was able to get to the end of the story much faster that way.  😉  I think this is an example of a movie enhancing a book.  Both were excellent.

Wonder is about a little boy named Auggie who is going to school for the first time (after being homeschooled! through fourth grade).  He has a genetic birth defect known as Treacher Collins Syndrome which causes a variety of health problems and major facial abnormalities.

Auggie's story is mine, kind of.  I was born with a genetic birth defect called Noonan Syndrome.  My health issues are not nearly as severe as the ones mentioned in the book, and the bullying I received wasn't as bad, but I could definitely relate to Auggie. 

I feel like I have so much to say about this book... and yet the words won't come.

I did not know that I have a birth defect until I was in my 30s.  The diagnosis actually helped me to understand why I always felt "different".  It's because I am different, but not too different.  Part of me wants to go back to my high school and tell everyone off.  "Look at how you treated the girl with the birth defect!"  But, actually, it doesn't really matter if I have a birth defect or not.  "Look at how you treated a human being!"  No one deserves to be bullied.  I do wonder, though, if I would have been treated differently if I were "normal".  Probably not.

 

Hugs, your classmates missed out.  I haven’t encountered that book either but was surprised to discover my Overdrive has it in many languages.  Planning to check it out and read it in English......I almost checked out the French version by accident!  

1 hour ago, tuesdayschild said:

I just twigged listening to a sample of the Horowitz book you mentioned, that he crafted Foyle's War (such a good WWII dvd series).  

Yay.  I've used a credit and downloaded the audiobook for this.  

**

Just completed  Spring Magic ~ D. E. Stevenson, narrated by Lesley Mackie  (4)  (London, Hertfordshire/ Scotland/  WWII).    This definitely ranks as comfort listening for me.  Vintage, clean romance.     Extra:  Quite a few scenarios of children being emotionally adandoned/neglected, some physcially due to the wars.  The least likeable soldier is a womaniser who is cheating on his wife. Not fussed on the outcome Stevenson gifted to the wife.

I love the Horowitz series!  I hope you enjoy the audiobook.  I have the new one on hold....pretty sure it is in book form.

I need to read another Stevenson.  I think some more have been added to the Prime free reading library for those who have access.

 

 

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7 hours ago, tuesdayschild said:

I just twigged listening to a sample of the Horowitz book you mentioned,

 

Did you read The Word is Murder? 

 

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9 hours ago, tuesdayschild said:

I just twigged listening to a sample of the Horowitz book you mentioned, that he crafted Foyle's War (such a good WWII dvd series).  

Yay.  I've used a credit and downloaded the audiobook for this.  

**

Just completed  Spring Magic ~ D. E. Stevenson, narrated by Lesley Mackie  (4)  (London, Hertfordshire/ Scotland/  WWII).    This definitely ranks as comfort listening for me.  Vintage, clean romance.     Extra:  Quite a few scenarios of children being emotionally adandoned/neglected, some physcially due to the wars.  The least likeable soldier is a womaniser who is cheating on his wife. Not fussed on the outcome Stevenson gifted to the wife.

Lol, realizing he wrote Foyle's War was what pushed me to give his books a try. 🙂 Hope you enjoy the new book! 

And I'm almost ready for another D.E. Stevenson - Spring Magic sounds like a good one!

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