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Robin M

Book a Week 2019 - BW28: 52 Books Bingo - Ancients

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Happy Sunday and welcome to week twenty-eight 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. 

Our next 52 Books Bingo adventure is taking us back to the Ancients. Our  timeline begins in 2500 BC and the oldest known story, The Epic of Gilgamesh and continues through 500AD approximately. We have a wide brush to choose from with classical and historical fiction literature set in or about ancient Greece, Rome, Roman Britain, Ireland, Asia, Egypt, the Middle East, and biblical times.

There are a number of ways to go with this category, including but not limited to: 

Read a book set in an ancient civilization
Read an alternative history/science Fiction/Fantasy book set during ancient times
Read a book written in ancient times
Read a book with Ancient in the title 
Spell out Ancient, using one book per letter in the title.


A basic level guide to classical antiquity

Goodreads Popular Ancient History Books

Ancient Men of Power: The Roman Republic’s Most Influential Leaders

Top 10 Most Important People in Greece

Powerful Women in Ancient History 

Goodreads Best Novels set in the Ancient World 

Bookriot's 100 Must Read Books about Ancient History

Follow ancient paths through Pre Roman Europe 

Modern Interpretations of Ancient Myths

7 Best Ancient History Audiobooks of All Time

There are a wide variety of authors whose writing will thrust you back into the lives and times of Ancient characters such as Ben Kane with his Forgotten Legion Series to Bodie and Brock Thoene's Ad Chronicles, two of my favorite authors. 

Have fun exploring and traveling through ancient history.

What are you reading?

 

Link to week 27

Edited by Robin M
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I'm currently reading Blood Vow from the Black Dagger Legacy series which is part of the black dagger brotherhood series and intermixed in the timeline with the regular series.  First time read.  

"The Black Dagger Brotherhood continues to train the best of the best to join them in the deadly battle against the Lessening Society. Among the new recruits, Axe proves to be a cunning and vicious fighter—and also a loner isolated because of personal tragedy. When an aristocratic female needs a bodyguard, Axe takes the job, though he’s unprepared for the animal attraction that flares between him and the one he is sworn to protect.

For Elise, who lost her first cousin to a grisly murder, Axe’s dangerous appeal is enticing—and possibly a distraction from her grief. But as they delve deeper into her cousin’s death, and their physical connection grows into so much more, Axe fears that the secrets he keeps and his tortured conscience will tear them apart.

Rhage, the Brother with the biggest heart, knows all about self-punishing, and he wants to help Axe reach his full potential. But when an unexpected arrival threatens Rhage and Mary’s new family, he finds himself back in the trenches again, fighting against a destiny that will destroy all he holds most dear.

As Axe’s past becomes known, and fate seems to be turning against Rhage, both males must reach deep—and pray that love, rather than anger, will be their lantern in the darkness."

 

We watched 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi last night which was really good but so hard to watch emotionally given the content.  Hubby and I were in tears by the end. 

"gripping true story of six elite ex-military operators assigned to protect the CIA who fought back against overwhelming odds when terrorists attacked a U.S. diplomatic compound on September 11, 2012. When everything went wrong, six men had the courage to do what was right.

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I just purchased Gates of Fire by Steven Pressfield in honor of this week's Ancients theme! It's been on my to-read list for a while, so what better time? 🙂

Current read I'm a Stranger Here Myself by Bill Bryson which several of you mentioned a couple of weeks back. It's working well as my Bonfire hangover remedy. 

Wrecked by Joe Ide is dying on the vine. I really enjoyed the previous two novels in the series, but I've been struggling with this one and have sidelined it in exchange for Joe Rogan podcasts........ I'm not sure if it's the plot, or that it simply isn't translating well onto Audible for me. I read the other two on Kindle. I'm giving it one more chapter before being depositing it into the Did Not Finish category of shame. It's not horrible, but it's hard for me to push through a non-engaging audio book. 

And speaking of DNF- I plopped The Kitchen Counter Cooking School by Kathleen Flinn into my DNF pile last week. A friend recommended it as one her online bookclub was reading, but I couldn't engage with the author at all. It came across as all ego and "look at the wonderful things I do," sort of spiel. I also don't like books who act as if simply knowing how to cook makes one love to cook. Not that simple......1/5 stars. 

@Robin M 13 Hours sounds incredibly intense. I'd like to watch, but not sure I can! 

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In re Dept Q books—

I skipped a few either as currently unavailable or didn’t catch my interest.  Then got to “The Marco Effect” which I listened to and liked.

 I fast forwarded or ignored some parts that got too long and tedious— especially  with 15 yo Marco going here and there trying to elude capture and the police, in places that I don’t know irl, and that didn’t seem well enough described to make them come alive for me (unlike, say, Donna Leon’s Venice) .  But the story was generally good, and I liked the Marco character.

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I don't think I posted about the two books that I finished last week:

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sanez: I listened to the audio version, which is read by Lin-Manuel Miranda. This is a YA, coming-of-age novel and I enjoyed it very much. Aspects of the ending irked me; otherwise, I would have given in five stars. I particularly enjoyed the writing.

And we had a little bit of serendipity to go along with this book. My son just happened to pick up I Hate this About Me by Henry Alberto at one of our indie bookstores. It wasn't until after he read it and looked up the author that we found at that Henry Alberto is the filmmaker on the Aristotle and Dante project. I Hate this About Me is a book of affirmations. It speaks to boys, but also to those of us who raise boys and those who love boys. The recurring thought is that it is OK for boys to (fill in the blank). I would say that the target audience is late teens and young adults rather than children - there is candid discussion of rape, misogyny, and drug use. I am very glad that I read it.

The publisher describes it as "a modern-day book of affirmations interwoven with personal narratives and reflections of filmmaker Henry Alberto’s grappling with the toxic masculinity innately embedded in the Latinx community." 

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For Ancients I’ll go with Marcus Aurelius ‘s Meditations in English translation 

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I'm slowly catching up on reviews. 

I read Speak - 1 Star -  This book disappointed me. YA is not my cup of tea. I knew this already, but I was swayed by all the high ratings for this book and I figured that this might be worth reading. The story was slow, much of it felt contrived, and the characters seemed a bit too extreme. The ending was one of the most abrupt endings that I have come across. I shouldn’t have wasted my time on this boring book. 

 Some interesting quotes, which are not positive or upbeat, since the book is depressing enough anyway, but quotes that I thought to be worth sharing and that are a bit telling about the overall mood.

 “It is easier not to say anything. Shut your trap, button your lip, can it. All that crap you hear on TV about communication and expressing feelings is a lie. Nobody really wants to hear what you have to say.”

 “The same boys who got detention in elementary school for beating the crap out of people are now rewarded for it. They call it football.”

 “When people don’t express themselves, they die one piece at a time. You’d be shocked at how many adults are really dead inside—walking through their days with no idea who they are, just waiting for a heart attack or cancer or a Mack truck to come along and finish the job. It’s the saddest thing I know.”

 “Gym should be illegal. It's humiliating.”

Every Living Thing - 4 Stars - Most people know that James Herriot wrote about his life as a Yorkshire country vet in the 1930s, ‘40s, and this one, which took place in the ‘50s. When my children were small, we read and re-read a beautiful children’s Treasury edition of the Herriot stories. We all loved these stories, our son especially. Honestly, if I could, I would buy a copy of this for every family.

Herriot’s descriptions of Yorkshire are so delightful that four years ago, when we were traveling in England, we spent a few nights in Thirsk (known as “Darrowby” in his books) and we visited the Herriot museum (“The World of James Herriot”). The museum is the actual surgery where the stories take place. We stayed at a cozy little B&B in Thirsk. The owners grew up knowing James Herriott and his family. They all lived down the street from one another. The Herriot children, who are now adults in their seventies, went to school with owners of the B&B. They are friends still.

We took this picture of the church where James Herriot and his wife got married. It’s just down the street from the Herriot Museum.

cc224f1f59742aff15bc6b0c96e09db7.jpg

Although I liked this book very much, it wasn’t my favorite. It’s the last one in the series. I’ve enjoyed them all and feel sad that as with all good things, this too, had to come to an end.

9780312674397.jpg   9781250075710.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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@Negin Beautiful picture,  my family has visited that church and had a really nice time chatting with the volunteers there.  We had fun imagining Tristan ringing the bells!  You asked about the weather,  the first part of June was a constant drizzle but the last couple of week have been lovely.

This won’t be a surprise because of all the recent Department Q discussion but The Absent Oneis being set aside for now.  The audiobook for The Sentence is Death arrived from my hold’s list and I also have Patricia Brigg’s Burn Bright on audio.  My family and the great clean out seem to have limited my audiobook time greatly.  Today we did books in the garage and managed to turn 4 boxes into 3 with a large box for a homeschool family we know.  Considering the 3 remaining include dd’s Notebooks which are legendary in their volume I feel pretty good about the sort.

Crazy Rich Asians is being set aside too because I found it too much like the movie and it is long.  😂. I plan to read Salvation of a Saint by Keigo Higashino https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13506866-salvation-of-a-saint for my Asian Detective 10x10 next but might end up distracted.

For Ancients I am a bit torn, I just checked out Keeper of the Flame https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/19737926-keeper-of-the-flame from one of my rabbit trails off the fun links Robin provided. I already have Lionors https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/654401.Lionors?ac=1&from_search=true planned for that space on the Bingo card.  Lionors is technically a reread but as I read it when I was about 13 😂 when I removed it from my sil’s bookshelf and fell in love with Arthur I may still go with Lionors even if the print is a bit small in the ancient copy I found to buy.

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I'm not doing the Books Bingo challenge -- at least not intentionally -- but if I were I might count Oliver Twist because I feel like I'm going to be ancient by the time I finish it.  :)  I made some good progress on it this week, but I am finding it a very slow read.

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@Negin  I'm sorry you didn't like Speak.  I found the graphic novel to be much better.  I agree that the original book is a slog.  The graphic novel pares the book down to mostly the dialog which makes it easier to swallow.  The story is the same, so I wouldn't recommend it to you -- no need to torture yourself 😉 -- but for anyone else who might be interested in reading what it's about, I suggest the graphic novel.

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1 hour ago, mumto2 said:

This won’t be a surprise because of all the recent Department Q discussion but The Absent One is being set aside for now.

My copy is still gathering dust on the coffee table.

**

A one day only free set for Kindle readers ~

Plague Wars: Infection Day: The First Trilogy

Regards,

 Kareni

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Some bookish posts ~

 Fans of the Regency era might like this … Zack MacLeod Pinsent dresses in British Regency attire every day and is a tailor who sews historically accurate clothing for clients. A video from the BBC.

 

Five SFF Books by Puerto Rican Authors

https://www.tor.com/2019/07/02/five-sff-books-by-puerto-rican-authors/comment-page-1/#comment-814560

16 BOOKS ABOUT HACKERS THAT WILL MAKE YOU WANT TO CODE

https://bookriot.com/2019/07/02/books-about-hackers/

Books for the Ages

https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2019/entertainment/books/100-books-for-the-ages/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.?07578293cd79

Regards,

Kareni

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I stayed up late and woke up early because of the Salvation of a Saint https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13506866-salvation-of-a-saint?ac=1&from_search=true my Asian detective mystery that I mentioned yesterday.  That book accomplished quite a bit considering it answers “The Who Did It” question before the murder even happens.......”The How” ended up being what kept me reading.  Essentially the victim is poisoned by coffee he made.......the question is how did the killer poison the coffee?  This series has a physics professor who consults with the police.  I read the Devotion of Suspect X by the same author and loved it (can’t really remember it 😂beyond the fact that I believe it made my top 10 list that year......) so this book has been on my list every since.  I have access to at least one more by this author but am not sure that I want read it immediately, wondering if I should save it.....I am hoping to have 10 different Asian detectives for my 10 x10 challenge and I now have 5 read with more planned.

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13 hours ago, Junie said:

@Negin  I'm sorry you didn't like Speak.  I found the graphic novel to be much better.  I agree that the original book is a slog.  The graphic novel pares the book down to mostly the dialog which makes it easier to swallow.  The story is the same, so I wouldn't recommend it to you -- no need to torture yourself 😉 -- but for anyone else who might be interested in reading what it's about, I suggest the graphic novel.

Junie, oh, I wish that I had known! I considered getting the graphic novel and I should have. I love graphic novels. Maybe I'll get it at some point, after some time has passed. 

Kindle book on sale today (mystery;/crime/thriller)

9780099546771.jpg

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Kareni, that was very cool!! I actually follow him on instagram - it was super neat to hear more of his story. 

Negin, I love the James Herriot books and have read them twice. I listened to the first two on audio with one of my dds as we drove to swim practice for a couple of years. Love the photo and love that you had such a nice time there. I plan on visiting someday!

 

I haven't finished any of my reading this week - I seem to start a lot of books and then lose interest and have to force myself to pick it up again. 

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I keep falling behind this year on BaW posts. In fact, all but one of the posts I quoted are from last week. 

 

On 6/30/2019 at 4:06 PM, Negin said:

Thank you all so much for your prayers and kind thoughts re: my brother from last week's thread. Reading all your posts warmed my heart and brought tears to my eyes. Seriously. 

Well, in a nutshell. My dd and I were gone to NYC for four nights. NYC was nice, as it always is. His family was not nice, as is often the case. We didn't get to see him for more than about five minutes total. My parents are there and, poor things, they're not doing well at all. Our focus and thoughts are all on them at the moment. 

Okay ... books. I read Best. State. Ever.: A Florida Man Defends His Homeland - 3 Stars - I have read a few Dave Barry books – most of them had me laughing out loud, almost to the point of crying. When we were at Miami International Airport recently, my daughter and I headed to the bookstore as soon as we could. We were waiting to board our flight back to the small island where we live, an island where there are no proper bookstores. Whenever we get to travel, we shop as much as we can and crave bookstores like you wouldn’t believe. Anyway, I digress. I saw this book and knowing that it’s about Florida and that Dave Barry lives there, well, I just had to get it. I love associating books with specific bookshops and traveling. I started reading it while on the plane back home.

It was a quick and fun read. It was funniest at the beginning of the book, yet I found it enjoyable throughout. I don’t think that this book was intended to be a humor book, probably more of a travel guide. As for Florida, I have only visited Orlando and Miami, but reading this makes me want to visit the state further, even though there are certainly some odd tourist attractions!

My favorite description:

“Cassadaga’s nickname is The Psychic Capital of the World. As you drive into town on Cassadaga Road, you pass house after house with signs that say PSYCHIC.

This is a place where you might have trouble getting a plumber on the weekend, but if you need an emergency tarot card reading, help is only seconds away.”

 

 

I'm sorry an already stressful visit became more stressful due to your brother's family. I'll be keeping you and yours in my thoughts. 

On 6/30/2019 at 9:41 PM, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I have to be honest- I've read every single one of his books and I feel like Dave Barry Hits Below the Beltway or Boogers are My Beat are his all time funniest non-fiction books- but I've never done one on audio!!  His fiction is pretty epic too. Big Trouble and Tricky Business both made me snort assorted beverages through my nose on multiple occasions while reading. (I learned afterward to not read them while drinking or while dh was sleeping nearby....)  I think those books have an extra zing, living in hurricane territory, but you live in CA, so I'm sure the zany characters will feel every bit as relatable, LOL. I think coastal folk would appreciate his characters and his portrayals of the media in the best way. 😁

He and Carl Hiasson are about tied at my favorite go to's when I need a pick me up. 

I love Dave Barry! I first discovered him years ago through his Miami Herald column, and the first book I read was Dave Barry Slept Here: A Sort of History of the United States. It had me laughing out loud through the whole thing. I loved Best.State. Ever. and chose it for book club a few years ago after we read several heavy, depressing books. I felt like we needed something light. As Floridians we all loved discussing it. I'm familiar with most of the places he describes in that book and I live about 45 minutes from Cassadaga. My mom and I went once for laughs but my SIL (dh's younger sister) actually takes the place and the predictions seriously. She even has a "regular" psychic she sees. The rest of the family is just ... 🙄 

The only one of his fiction books I read was Tricky Business. Anyone living in a hurricane prone state would get a laugh out of the running gag about the weather reporters out in the storm. His newspaper columns on the craziness of preparing for a hurricane are hilarious.

Aethelryth I can't tag you because I don't know how to make the aesc on my computer. I looked it up but the instructions didn't work.

On 7/4/2019 at 2:23 PM, Matryoshka said:

Didn't get around to commenting on this last week - I'm actually relieved to hear others weren't enthralled with The Idiot.  It's the only Dostoevsky I've read, years ago on a friend's enthusiastic recommendation, and it was a big fat 'meh' for me.  Am I remembering correctly that this was yet another novel of the period who had one or more too-sensitive-for-this-world characters dying slowly of consumption?  

So that kind of put me off of Dostoevsky.  Should I still give Bros. Karamazov or C&P a try sometime?

I made it through C&P because it's short but I still thought it was insane. I tried 3 times to read The Brothers Karamazov but finally gave up. I'll stick to Tolstoy when I want to read dead white Russian men. 

On 7/4/2019 at 5:42 PM, Pen said:

 

I found the philosophy/religion discussion  and characters in Bros K more interesting.  

That's exactly the reason I hated it and gave it up lol

22 hours ago, Pen said:

For Ancients I’ll go with Marcus Aurelius ‘s Meditations in English translation 

Funny, I picked it up recently and decided to give it a go. I downloaded the free Kindle version years ago but never got around to reading it. I guess now would be a good time. 🙂 

Edited by Lady Florida.
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I finished several books since my last post. I don't recall when I posted last so I hope I'm not repeating myself. I'll only list the most recent books in an effort not to post what I already posted.

I've been reading, well actually listening, to mostly non-fiction, all on audio -

**Thunderstruck  This was a typical Erik Larson that wove more than one story into the overall story.
**American Kingpin A fascinating look into the dark side of the internet. I'd heard of the Silk Road (no, not that one) and the dark web but knew very little about it until I read this. It was also interesting to follow the various federal agencies that tracked him down and eventually caught him.
**Agatha Christie: A Mysterious Life The author was obviously a fan of Christie, but this book about her life actually made me like her less as a person though I still love her books. Through parts of it I kept thinking of @aggieamy and her warnings to stay away from Christie's later books. Some of what the author said basically confirmed Amy's belief's about the later works.
**Truman -  by David McCullough. It's David McCullough. Enough said.

Both of my recent fiction novels were on Kindle -

**The Last Chronicle of Barset - Finally! I finished the  Barchester series! I held off on this for quite a while because the previous book was so slow, but this one pulled me in right away and kept me reading. That's saying a lot considering this is a 19th century novel/series of novels. Victorian novelists weren't exactly known for their fast paced action. 😂 😂 😂 Trollope went all out killing off characters left and right, and winding up all but one loose end (that one loose end is something fans still complain about today). 

**A Woman is No Man -this was last month's irl book club book. We all found it interesting and compelling, but also depressing. 

Currently reading  (all on Kindle) -

**In the Market for Murder - the second in a cozy series. I read the first one and though I enjoyed it I didn't feel like the books were worth buying and my library didn't have them. I was pleasantly surprised to find they're available free on Prime Reading.
**Conan Doyle for the Defense - this was on one of the links (Edwardian crime I think) from @Kareni though I already had started reading it. It's a bit slow but interesting. Oh, and Thunderstruck above was also on that link.
**Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire: A 500 Year History - The author traces the relationship Americans have with conspiracy theories and fantastical beliefs from the very beginning, including the Jamestown and Plymouth settlements.  ****Warning**** - The author includes many/most religious beliefs as fantasies so if that will upset/offend you, this book is not for you. 

Finally, I'm rereading Ellen Foster even though I just read it a few months ago. I really liked it and wanted to discuss it with my book club, so when it came my turn to choose a book, I picked this one. We meet on Tuesday for our discussion. It's a short book but if I don't finish it won't matter, since it wasn't that long ago I read it for the first time. 

If you're my friend on Goodreads you'll see I have more books listed under currently reading, but the ones above are the only ones I'm actually reading. 

 

Edited by Lady Florida.
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Is it just me?  Reading all the posts on these threads makes me feel sad that I don't have more time to read!

I read very little for myself in the past week.  Most of it was spent on a road trip (I can't read in the car), and before the road trip, I was spending my after-work time with my kids, reading to them and other stuff rather than following my own desires.  😛  I did finish the book about how to get your teens to listen/talk.

Right now I feel like re-reading a pile of books about parenting adopted kids / tween girls.  Just to refresh the concepts / wisdom.  I might also start one of the other books I have waiting - like Boundaries with Teens?  Maybe I will again try reading Queen Bees and Wannabees, but honestly I found that book really off-base the first time I tried it.

I think I will read Julie of the Wolves as a read-aloud.  Not sure if I should finish the Spy School stuff first or not.

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8 minutes ago, SKL said:

Is it just me?  Reading all the posts on these threads makes me feel sad that I don't have more time to read!

 

We're all in different seasons of life. While I'm not an empty nester (ds still lives here) I have an adult child and I don't work outside the home, so my time is more my own. When he was younger I was lucky if I read one or two books a year, or I read mostly parenting and how-to homeschool books. I also pre-read a lot of children's books in those days. But for myself? For pleasure? Ha!

Don't compare yourself to anyone or feel sad. Well, okay you can feel sad. It saddened me when I had little time for reading, because I love to read. Just read for yourself when you can and know there will come a time when you'll almost feel sad that you have so much time to read! 

Edited by Lady Florida.
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7 hours ago, Lady Florida. said:

I keep falling behind this year on BaW posts. In fact, all but one of the posts I quoted are from last week. 

 

I'm sorry an already stressful visit became more stressful due to your brother's family. I'll be keeping you and yours in my thoughts. 

I love Dave Barry! I first discovered him years ago through his Miami Herald column, and the first book I read was Dave Barry Slept Here: A Sort of History of the United States. It had me laughing out loud through the whole thing.

Me too!

 

7 hours ago, Lady Florida. said:

I made it through C&P because it's short but I still thought it was insane. I tried 3 times to read The Brothers Karamazov but finally gave up. I'll stick to Tolstoy when I want to read dead white Russian men.

 

I much prefer Tolstoy! 

7 hours ago, Lady Florida. said:

That's exactly the reason I hated it and gave it up lol

🤣

7 hours ago, Lady Florida. said:

Funny, I picked it up recently and decided to give it a go. I downloaded the free Kindle version years ago but never got around to reading it. I guess now would be a good time. 🙂 

 

If you do, maybe we can compare impressions.

 

Does anyone recall: 

what book (an Ancient Greek) does Inspector Gamache have that was his Father’s special book?  A book by Epictetus maybe? Or is it Meditations?   

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I finally, finally finished reading Oliver Twist.  Then dd16 informed me that she finished it in two days.  :grumble:

I enjoyed the story, but it could have been told in about half as many chapters.  Mr. Dickens was in want of a good editor.

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@mumto2 Those Detective Galileo books look great, and, based on the holds for both the ebooks and print editions around town, very popular.

I'm another huge fan of the James Herriot books and of the old tv series from back in the 70s. We have used, on a few occasions, the term "flop bottom" (remember the dog Tricky Woo?) to describe our dog's behavior.

I finished a fascinating memoir yesterday, one that ties in with this week's ancients theme. It is An Odyssey: A Father, a Son and an Epic by Daniel Mendelsohn. The author teaches college classics courses, and his dad asks to sit in on the Odyssey course one spring semester. Father and son then take a cruise that follows Odysseus's path back home to Ithaca. It is a lovely story of a son trying to get to know his father, tied in thematically with the Odyssey. It inspired me to pull my copy of the Odyssey off the shelf and to reread sections of it. 

I also recently finished a book that is outside my usual genre. I tend to avoid the modern fiction sagas of tight knit families who uncover a shocking secret that upends everything.  But the Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson was utterly delightful.  It is set in the South and is delightfully free of stereotypes as the author herself is a true Southerner. The lead character, a female comic book artist finds herself pregnant after a comic-con one night stand with cosplay Batman, has a great voice in telling us in the story. The comic book and nerd aspects of the book were also delightfully free from stereotype as well. 

I just started the newest Anthony Horowitz mystery, The Sentence is Death. And I'm about a third of the way through the non-fiction Mozart's Starling, which I put down somewhere around the house...

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6 minutes ago, Junie said:

I finally, finally finished reading Oliver Twist.  Then dd16 informed me that she finished it in two days.  :grumble:

I enjoyed the story, but it could have been told in about half as many chapters.  Mr. Dickens was in want of a good editor. 

Ah, but Oliver Twist was originally serialized with monthly installments from February of 1837 to April of 1839, so length was likely advantageous.  Junie, you probably read it more quickly than those early readers!

Regards,

Kareni

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4 minutes ago, Kareni said:

Ah, but Oliver Twist was originally serialized with monthly installments from February of 1837 to April of 1839, so length was likely advantageous.  Junie, you probably read it more quickly than those early readers!

Regards,

Kareni

Yes, I was explaining to some of my littles that this was a serial (not cereal) and that it would be read one chapter at a time, usually one a month.

And thanks for the link!!

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7 hours ago, JennW in SoCal said:

 

I also recently finished a book that is outside my usual genre. I tend to avoid the modern fiction sagas of tight knit families who uncover a shocking secret that upends everything.  But the Almost Sisters by Joshilyn Jackson was utterly delightful.  It is set in the South and is delightfully free of stereotypes as the author herself is a true Southerner. The lead character, a female comic book artist finds herself pregnant after a comic-con one night stand with cosplay Batman, has a great voice in telling us in the story. The comic book and nerd aspects of the book were also delightfully free from stereotype as well. 

I just started the newest Anthony Horowitz mystery, The Sentence is Death. And I'm about a third of the way through the non-fiction Mozart's Starling, which I put down somewhere around the house...

I over edited the quote but you would definitely enjoy Inspector Galileo.  I don’t think there is any need to read these books in any particular order beyond the fact that Suspect X is the popular one.........

Thanks for the recommendation, I just added Almost Sisters to my stack.......I think I looked at it when it was first released but I tend to avoid sagas also.  The search engine also coughed up Almost Amish about reality tv contestants which I couldn’t resist. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/12963151-almost-amish?ac=1&from_search=true So the stack increased 😂

Dh was gone all day yesterday and my dc’s have started writing their Capstone papers so all was silent at my house and I binge listened to the entire The Sentence is Death while doing chores and knitting.  I started knitting a scarf out of recently located beautiful yarn I have saved for a special project and had lost in the house years ago.   I loved the book and was happy to have a chance to get my knitting abilities reestablished so peacefully......it’s been over a year since I picked up my needles.

@Pen I think the book Inspector Gamache carries from his father is Meditations but am not sure.  I found this website and interesting book related blurb http://www.gamacheseries.com/cultural-inspirations-from-the-long-way-home/when I tried to confirm.  It doesn’t answer our question at all but as a rabbit trail it’s fun.

@Junie My Dd loved Dickens and came close to reading them all.  I also found them long and in need of serious editing.  I quit prereading when Dickens entered the picture............

@Kareni  Thanks for all the great links.  I just “bought” the Pickett book.  At one point I had it checked out and had to return it unopened so now I will have my own next time I decide I want to give that series a try.....so many BaWers seem to love that series!

Edited by mumto2
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Time is in short supply this week, just stopped in to read your posts, and link hop 😉

Love the pictures you're sharing at the end of each week @mumto2  - virtual trip to the U.K.

I appreciated seeing, last week, where you are with your 10x10 @Matryoshka  - encouragement for me to keep at it

 

Quick book update. 

Completed:

I’ve started reading  Joel (KJV)  and listening to Luck and Judgement ~ Peter Grainger  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33142939-luck-and-judgement       The Inspectors in A Private Investigation referred back to the case in this earlier book so I decided I’d back up and listen to this one too; and, I'm going to count it towards my spelling challenge.

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4 hours ago, tuesdayschild said:

Time is in short supply this week, just stopped in to read your posts, and link hop 😉

 

Love the pictures you're sharing at the end of each week @mumto2  - virtual trip to the U.K.

I appreciated seeing, last week, where you are with your 10x10 @Matryoshka  - encouragement for me to keep at it

 

 

Quick book update. 

 

Completed:

 

I’ve started reading  Joel (KJV)  and listening to Luck and Judgement ~ Peter Grainger  https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33142939-luck-and-judgement       The Inspectors in A Private Investigation referred back to the case in this earlier book so I decided I’d back up and listen to this one too; and, I'm going to count it towards my spelling challenge.

I have just been  looking at DC Smith descriptions  and need to make sure these are set in Norfolk.......Brit Tripping😉 and my Scotland 10x10.  The first one with the North Sea oil riggs made me think Scotland..........

Edited by mumto2
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Couple of more from my massive "due soon at the library" pile:

29. " The Instant Economist: Everything You Need to Know About How the Economy Works" by Timothy Taylor.  The publisher is Great Courses, and the author is the professor featured in several of their courses.  It seems like a really good introduction on a 101 level, though I found microeconomics much clearer than macroeconomics.

28. "White Like Her: My Family's Story of Race and Racial Passing" by Gail Lukasik.  Fascinating read about the author's mother and other family members who "passed" as white for the better opportunities it offered.  I had heard of this phenomena somewhere, but this is the first account of it I've read.  I was also interested in the genealogical research the author did to track down her story.

27. "Personal, Career, and Financial Security" by Richard J. Maybury.

26. "Rascal" by Sterling North.

25. "Whatever Happened to Penny Candy?" by Richard J. Maybury.

24.  "Joy in the Covenant" by Julie B. Beck.  (LDS)

23. "The Essential 55" by Ron Clark.

22. "How to Tutor Your Own Child" by Marina Koestler Ruben.

21. "Faith is Not Blind" by Bruce and Marie Hafen. (LDS)

20. "Silent Souls Weeping: Depression, Sharing Stories, Finding Hope" by Jane Clayson Johnson.  (LDS)

19. "Leap of Faith" by Bob Bennett. (LDS)

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

17. "Manga Classics: MacBeth" adapted by Crystal S. Chan.

16. "One Dead Spy" by Nathan Hale.

15. "Stellar Science Projects About Earth's Sky" and "Wild Science Projects About Earth's Weather" by Robert Gardner.  

14. "Stuff Matters" by Mark Miodownik.  

13. "Led by Divine Design" by Ronald A. Rasband. (LDS)

12. "Forensic Science Projects with a Crime Lab" by Robert Gardner. 

11. "Manga Classics: The Jungle Book" adapted by Crystal S. Chan

10. "Donner Dinner Party" by Nathan Hale. 

9. "Manga Classics: The Stories of Edgar Allan Poe" adapted by Stacy King. 

8. "Bodies We've Buried" by Jarrett Hallcox and Amy Welch.

7. "The Forensic Casebook" by N.E. Genge.

6. "Shaken Faith Syndrome" by MIchael R. Ash. (LDS)

5. "Fingerprints: Crime-Solving Science Experiments" by Kenneth G. Rainis.

4. "Forensic Investigations" (6) by Leela Burnscott. & ("Bones Speak" by Richard Spilsbury)

3. "A Reason for Faith" edited by Laura Harris Hales.  (LDS)

2. "Left Standing" by Mason Wells, et al. (LDS)

1.  "Camino Easy" by B. G. Preston. 

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@Lady Florida. you HAVE to read Big Trouble when you have time. I was really ticked when they made a movie out of it because I don't feel like his stuff translates well to screen and they ruined it, but that book is hysterical. I am hoping to buy a few of his Peter and the Starcatcher books he did with Ridely Pearson soon, now that ds is taking off on reading ability. I think those are the only things of his I have yet to read. 

General update- I am extremely digging Gates of Fire. This may be giving Uhtred a run for the money in my Most Beloved Warrior Book category. I'm kicking myself now for putting this off for so long. Never should doubt Dan Carlin recs I guess! 

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I just finished All Those Explosions Were Someone Else's Fault. It was a clever good vs evil, magic vs superpowers with a bit of physics thrown in. I'm looking forward to the sequel. Oh, and it was set in Canada which refreshing. 

"Kim Lam is an ordinary college student until a freak scientific accident (what else?) transforms Kim and three housemates into Sparks―and drafts them into the never-ending war between the Light and Dark. They struggle to master their new abilities―and (of course) to design cool costumes and come up with great hero-names."

 

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Today I finished Tanya Huff's military science fiction novel Valor's Choice (Valor Novel Book 1) by Tanya Huff which I enjoyed. (Copious swearing and death)  I may read on in the series; I haven't decided yet.

 "Staff Sergeant Torin Kerr was a battle-hardened professional. So when she and her platoon were yanked from a well-deserved leave for what was supposed to be "easy" duty as the honor guard for a diplomatic mission to the non-Confederation world of the Silsviss, she was ready for anything. Sure, there’d been rumors of the Others—the sworn enemies of the Confederation—being spotted in this sector of space. But there were always rumors. The key thing was to recruit the Silsviss into the Confederation before the Others attacked or claimed these lizardlike warriors for their side. And everything seemed to be going perfectly. Maybe too perfectly.... "

**

I recently reread SK Dunstall's Linesman ... again.

Regards,

 Kareni

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15 hours ago, mumto2 said:

I have just been  looking at DC Smith descriptions  and need to make sure these are set in Norfolk.......Brit Tripping😉 and my Scotland 10x10.  The first one with the North Sea oil riggs made me think Scotland..........

The ones I've read were predominately set in the Kings Lake District, Norfolk.   (Bk 3 does feature, briefly, a trip out to the North Sea rig from off the coast of Aberdeen.  Are you detailing your reads set in Scotland too?)   If you do that fancy bookreads recommend/ selection thing  😉 , I think I've detailed the locations of each DC book I've listened to for my Brit Tripping then , and for a later go through. (I wanting to have another read round through that challenge with some of the books you listed.... )

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8 minutes ago, Kareni said:

I recently reread SK Dunstall's Linesman ... again.

👍😍  (I'm just about to hit play on my first read through the second book....) 

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6 minutes ago, tuesdayschild said:

👍😍  (I'm just about to hit play on my first read through the second book....) 

When I started book two for the first time, I read the first chapter and thought "Who are these people? Should I know these people?" Don't worry. Ean shows up a chapter or two later. Enjoy!

Regards,

Kareni

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Since I now spent 12 hours a day away from home, I feel very behind in my reading. Work really cuts into your free time...   🤣

Reading:

Still finishing "Twenty -One Days" by Perry. Seems to be dragging a bit or it's me who's dragging.

What's next? Murder and Mayhem...

Audiobook:

"Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil" by Berendt. Just started - too soon for commenting.

Also listened to some excerpts by Dave Barry which were - of course - very funny.

 

Edited by Liz CA
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1 hour ago, Liz CA said:

Since I now spent 12 hours a day away from home, I feel very behind in my reading. Work really cuts into your free time...   🤣

That is a long day away!  Does your commute gift you with a decent amount of time for audiobook  'reading'  (or do I have the wrong BaW).     I'd get hardly any books "read" if it wasn't for audio.

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Looks like I picked the right week to jump back into the BaW thread. We're discussing James Herriott and Dave Barry?!?! *swoon* Two of my favorite reads. I haven't read Dave Barry in years but I remember reading one of his books when I was on a family vacation and my dad kept getting mad at me because I'd be sitting in the car reading and laughing like I was crazy.

@Robin M - Week 28? Yikes. I am so far behind in my reading. 

I've DNF'd two mysteries this week. I don't know what's wrong with me. Nothing is catching my interest. I probably need to just reread a favorite mystery to get back in the mood. 

@SKL - I'm right there with you this year on being so impressed with everyone's reading and I'm even feeling a bit envious. Some years are busier than others. I think your girls are pre-teens now? That's the age when I thought everything would get easier and I'd have more time but really now I'm just doing tons of driving!

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We also got back a couple of weeks ago from our London/Devon/Windsor trip. It was supposed to be a "beach" vacation but it ended up being 52 degrees and rainy everyday. We made do though and still had a great time. I'll share some pictures and try to make our trip sound literary!

DD and DH went to the Globe for a show. They'd been wanting to do that forever. Most evenings John was ready for bed by six so one of us would stay in the room with him and two of us would go on adventures at night. 

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We also got our traditional picture taken at the spot where we got the call that we had an adoption match six days before John was born. 

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We hit lots of book stores. (@VioletCrown - we bought a ton of Enid Blyton books to read aloud!)

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We ended up in Agatha country but didn't make it out to her house because of the 30 minute walk and it was raining. A bunch!

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Did I mention how much it rained?

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Anyone recognize this setting for one of the Poirot shows?

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Sandy and her family drove down to spend our last day in Windsor with us. We were all excited to see her family and felt like we were visiting long distance cousins. It rained. A lot but still had a great time. After she left I felt like I could have spent about eight hours straight chatting with her. 

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On 7/8/2019 at 7:28 PM, Kareni said:

Ah, but Oliver Twist was originally serialized with monthly installments from February of 1837 to April of 1839, so length was likely advantageous.  Junie, you probably read it more quickly than those early readers!

Regards,

Kareni

 

And I expect there were fewer books to choose and no movies so probably not only for how he got paid but also for the readers more words was good: more words meant longer entertainment...

 

Btw: I started the book by his granddaughter someone recommended. One Pair of Hands https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JPNY6H6/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_jwHjDbM623W6B

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Returned alive from a week of string camp in the sprawling Metroplex to the north, which may be three times as large as my home town but let me tell you has a severe lack of vegetarian tacos. And hipness in general. (In a nod to my 10x10 category "Don't Mess With Texas" (Texans, cowboys, or both), behold a primer on inter-urban attitudes, courtesy of Texas Monthly: "Fort Worth hates Dallas. Houston hates Dallas and Austin. San Antonio hates Austin. Austin wishes all the rest of us would just go away, and Dallas pretends none of the rest of us even exist.")

Not much reading during my busy week, but I did finish The American Puritans: Their Prose and Poetry, edited by Perry Miller. Back in the '50s, Doubleday issued a wonderful series of well-edited books, many of them original (as is this one), with cover art by the yet-unknown Edward Gorey. These either cost a little from thrift stores, or a lot from bookstores that know about them.

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Beautiful ink drawings and typography. More importantly, a wonderful introduction to the political, social, theological, and literary thought of the New England Puritans. More here than we were taught in high school.

Next up, since this category ("A is for Amy who...") needs some work, is Joseph Conrad's The Secret Agent, with a very Goreyish cover:

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... and since I don't often enough participate in the weekly challenges, I'll also this week read Terence's Phormio (161 BC).

Edited by Violet Crown
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Marcus Aurelius:

Possibly not a perfect quote but basically: 


"Not to have frequented public schools, and to have had good teachers at home"

 

I guess the homeschool versus public school debate goes back to ancient times!

 

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On 7/8/2019 at 9:18 PM, Junie said:

I finally, finally finished reading Oliver Twist.  Then dd16 informed me that she finished it in two days.  :grumble:

I enjoyed the story, but it could have been told in about half as many chapters.  Mr. Dickens was in want of a good editor.

Of course that was precisely the problem; he published it in the magazine he edited himself.

Wee Girl is almost done with Oliver Twist. It's the most "big kid" book she's ever read. In spring she was still struggling with picture books that had too much text. Huzzah!

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19 minutes ago, Violet Crown said:

Of course that was precisely the problem; he published it in the magazine he edited himself.

Wee Girl is almost done with Oliver Twist. It's the most "big kid" book she's ever read. In spring she was still struggling with picture books that had too much text. Huzzah!

Wow!  Congratulations to her!

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Thanks for sharing those photos Amy! Beautiful families. What did you see at the Globe? When we visited it was Hamlet.

How I wish we could have joined you. No more UK-ing in our foreseeable future. Though Middle Girl is determined to apply to Oxford so who knows.

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2 hours ago, Violet Crown said:

Returned alive from a week of string camp in the sprawling Metroplex to the north, which may be three times as large as my home town but let me tell you has a severe lack of vegetarian tacos. And hipness in general. (In a nod to my 10x10 category "Don't Mess With Texas" (Texans, cowboys, or both), behold a primer on inter-urban attitudes, courtesy of Texas Monthly: "Fort Worth hates Dallas. Houston hates Dallas and Austin. San Antonio hates Austin. Austin wishes all the rest of us would just go away, and Dallas pretends none of the rest of us even exist.")

 

Bwahahahaha! That is all so true. . Dh has been looking at jobs in Dallas and I asked him "But we can live in Ft. Worth or somewhere else close, right?" 😂

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20 minutes ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

Bwahahahaha! That is all so true. . Dh has been looking at jobs in Dallas and I asked him "But we can live in Ft. Worth or somewhere else close, right?" 😂

Ha! I'd move to Denton and commute.

Notice the major city that doesn't even make the list. That one's actually in New Mexico, isn't it?

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8 minutes ago, Violet Crown said:

Ha! I'd move to Denton and commute.

Notice the major city that doesn't even make the list. That one's actually in New Mexico, isn't it?

Ha- Yep! We keep our opinions within that four hour drive radius, LOL. Well, at least until people start running for office I guess! 

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