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Nov. 9-12: What are we reading?

Any new characters, settings, authors that you're enjoying?

I started Hanging Hill ( https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14524880 ) last night; it's a stand-alone novel by the author of the excellent-but-very-disturbing Jack McCaffery series, and I got caught up in it right away. It's a murder mystery, yes, but it also introduces the very different lives of two sisters, one a cop on the case, another a broke, divorced, and increasingly desperate mother of a rebellious teen.

In non-fiction, there's Mad Mary Lamb ( https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14747311 ), about the sister of famed essayist Charles "Elia" Lamb. I had not known that she murdered their mother, nor that he basically looked after her for the rest of his life, coping with her bouts of severe mental illness as best he could.

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Any new characters, settings, authors that you're enjoying?

I started Hanging Hill ( https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14524880/ ) last night; it's a stand-alone novel by the author of the excellent-but-very-disturbing Jack McCaffery series, and I got caught up in it right away. It's a murder mystery, yes, but it also introduces the very different lives of two sisters, one a cop on the case, another a broke, divorced, and increasingly desperate mother of a rebellious teen.

In non-fiction, there's Mad Mary Lamb ( https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14747311/ ), about the sister of famed essayist Charles "Elia" Lamb. I had not known that she murdered their mother, nor that he basically looked after her for the rest of his life, coping with her bouts of severe mental illness as best he could.
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In non-fiction, there's Mad Mary Lamb ( https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14747311/ ), about the sister of famed essayist Charles "Elia" Lamb. I had not known that she murdered their mother, nor that he basically looked after her for the rest of his life, coping with her bouts of severe mental illness as best he could.

I would recommend Peter Ackroyd's novel, The Lambs of London for further entertaining information about the Lambs and their associates!
https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/3315901/
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I would recommend Peter Ackroyd's novel, The Lambs of London for further entertaining information about the Lambs and their associates!


I had issues with that book: http://www.bookcrossing.com/---/6123236
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Paperback for at home reading: Mrs Hemingway by Naomi Wood - I started it this afternoon, have already enjoyed the first section on the first Mrs Hemingway and look forward to enjoying further sections on other women so designated . . . . :-)

Carrying around on the Kindle: Death Descends on Saturn Villa by MRC Kasasian, the third of his Gower Street Detective mysteries. One of the main characters has been annoying me somewhat so I hope she comes to her senses soon. I really don't want to give up on it! I enjoyed the first two in the series and have the fourth ready and waiting, so losing patience at this stage would not be good!
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Paperback for at home reading: Mrs Hemingway by Naomi Wood - I started it this afternoon, have already enjoyed the first section on the first Mrs Hemingway and look forward to enjoying further sections on other women so designated . . . . :-)

It was equally entertaining throughout, holding my attention from first to last!
https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14715323
Something completely different next, a YA novel that I may or may not stick with, having loved The Fault in our Stars
https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14182359/
but not really appreciating Paper Towns
https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14015127/
and I suspect this one, An Abundance of Katherines by John Green, may tend towards the lukewarm rather than the loved! We'll see! It's started OK . . . .
https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14715314/
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I suspect this one, An Abundance of Katherines by John Green, may tend towards the lukewarm rather than the loved! We'll see! It's started OK . . . .

I didn't get much above lukewarm but it continued to be sufficiently OK for me to finish it!
https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14715314
A change of pace next: Hungry Hill by Daphne du Maurier. I thought I'd pretty much read all her novels but this one appears to have escaped me so far. It's perhaps appropriate that I came across this copy in her beloved Cornwall :-)
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It's astonishingly wonderful. I love this book.

It's about spending years creating a dictionary, but it's really about the importance of having something of overarching importance in your life. It begins as Kohei Araki, of the Dictionary Editorial Department at Gembu Books, is about to retire and is looking for someone to replace him. That person is Mitsuya Majime, a bit of a misfit in the sales department, but perfect in the DED.

There's so much here, too, about the importance of words, of the right nuance. And Majime writes the most *gorgeous* love letter to the woman he will marry (and she has her own passion - she's a chef), with lots of Chinese poetry. ("If I had a poetic turn of mind, here I would offer you a poem of my own making, but in the sadness of mediocrity I can only gaze sighing at the radiant moon. Let me instead borrow the celebrated words of an ancient poet . . ."

I am now onto something a bit more mundane, Sue Grafton's latest, "Y is for Yesterday".

My non-fiction is "Uncompromising Activist: Richard Greener, First Black Graduate of Harvard College", by Katherine Reynolds Chaddock. Greener was also the father of Belle da Costa Greene, J. P. Morgan's personal librarian, who was the subject of an excellent book by Heidi Ardizzone, "An Illuminated Life": http://joansbooks.blogspot.com/---/illuminated-life.html
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It's astonishingly wonderful. I love this book.

It's about spending years creating a dictionary, but it's really about the importance of having something of overarching importance in your life. It begins as Kohei Araki, of the Dictionary Editorial Department at Gembu Books, is about to retire and is looking for someone to replace him. That person is Mitsuya Majime, a bit of a misfit in the sales department, but perfect in the DED.

There's so much here, too, about the importance of words, of the right nuance. And Majime writes the most *gorgeous* love letter to the woman he will marry (and she has her own passion - she's a chef), with lots of Chinese poetry. ("If I had a poetic turn of mind, here I would offer you a poem of my own making, but in the sadness of mediocrity I can only gaze sighing at the radiant moon. Let me instead borrow the celebrated words of an ancient poet . . ."

I am now onto something a bit more mundane, Sue Grafton's latest, "Y is for Yesterday".

My non-fiction is "Uncompromising Activist: Richard Greener, First Black Graduate of Harvard College", by Katherine Reynolds Chaddock. Greener was also the father of Belle da Costa Greene, J. P. Morgan's personal librarian, who was the subject of an excellent book by Heidi Ardizzone, "An Illuminated Life": http://joansbooks.blogspot.com/---/illuminated-life.html


Both sound fascinating!
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I am now onto something a bit more mundane, Sue Grafton's latest, "Y is for Yesterday".


I gave up on this. A bit surprising, as I've always enjoyed this series, but this one seems padded. There's far too much explanatory material and description. She *tells*, rather than shows, and it got too boring.

Moving on, instead, to "I am a Cat", by Natsume Soseki.
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Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier


It's going to be slow read. The font is very small and it is not going to be an easy read. From the small amount I have read, 40 pages, I can see that I am going to enjoy it though.
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Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier


It's going to be slow read. The font is very small and it is not going to be an easy read. From the small amount I have read, 40 pages, I can see that I am going to enjoy it though.


I loved that one. I read it when it first came out, and I devoured it. As I recall, I took it on a plane trip and had pretty much read the whole thing by the time I got to my destination.
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Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier


It's going to be slow read. The font is very small and it is not going to be an easy read. From the small amount I have read, 40 pages, I can see that I am going to enjoy it though.
I loved that one. I read it when it first came out, and I devoured it. As I recall, I took it on a plane trip and had pretty much read the whole thing by the time I got to my destination.

Whereas I didn't manage to finish it, got bored and gave up way before the end!
https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/5047418/
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The true story of when the American Revolution came to the Mohawk Valley and what happened to the eight half Irish and half Mohawk children of Sir William Johnson and Molly Brant.

This book is narrated by their younger son George. He had one brother and six sisters.
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READING
1. The Plight of the Darcy Brothers by Marsha Altman KTM 8/23/134 [358 pages]. This is the continuation of pride and prejudice for Miss Altman’s point of view. It’s just an ok book.

2. Nanny McPhee Returns by Emma Thompson audio 11/5/17 [ pages]. It’s written differently than what I was expecting. I thought it was going to be different than it is but it’s told in the setting of telling about how the movie was made

3. Blood Trail by C. J. Box 4/23/14. I have read other books in the series so it’s continuing on the saga. The problem is I haven’t read them in order not that you don’t get the storyline, I was going to be read them in order. Wish I did.


4. Bad Kids of the Bible by Thomas J. Craughwell 7/26/10 [304 pages] -- reading a couple chapters a week for inspiration.


ALL YEAR: God's Best for My Life by Lloyd John Ogilvie and New Testament (A challenge with my grandchildren)
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As has happened several times recently, I wasn't sure I hadn't read it in the past, but (fortunately?) my memory is so bad I'm enjoying it even if I did, as I don't know where it is going... : )
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In a conversation with the author at the back of the book, they note the book’s “uproarious humor...”. And a blurb on the back cover calls it “dead-on funny...”

I didn’t laugh once while reading it. I found it to be interesting (not great) but I didn’t find it funny at all. Didn’t know it was trying to be.

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2 Books

"Burning Bright" by Tracy Chevalier to read at home
I am reading the German translation though. I like her books. It is my third one and so far they all had some historical context. This time it's William Blake.

"Uncle Tom's Cabin" by Harriet Beecher Stowe to read on the train
Haven't read it before but rescued it out of an open book case. I sometimes have a few difficulties with the language but otherwise it started out quite interesting.
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I am starting this one today. It is the first book that I am reading by this author and have heard many good things from friends and BCers. =)
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I'm enjoying this novel. It has a different setting for me - Amsterdam in the 1600s, so that's interesting. And I can't tell where it's going to go so I have to keep reading!
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Another entry in Star Wars Shakespeare, The Clone Army Attacketh ( https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14800449 ), in which Yoda (who speaks in a sort of haiku, to distinguish him from everyone else's iambic pentameter) inserts this cross-cultural note:

"Once th'impossible
Hath been eliminated,
What remains is truth."

The author of these parodies/homages is actually kind to some of the characters; the film's intensely painful and wooden dialogue between Ani and Padme is presented here more like excerpts from Romeo & Juliet, with more credit to both characters. But overall the thing's just lots of fun...

On a different note, Lost Cat ( https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14724284 ) is "A True Story of Love, Desperation, and GPS Technology"; just browsing through it made me smile. And worry a bit, so I skipped to the end to make sure the cat would be OK. (Yes, I do that, especially for animal stories.)
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I never watched any Star War movie or read any related book but I remember on a trip to Tunisia about 10 years ago that many fans of the series were making a point to visit many of the movie settings or stay in a setting that is now a hotel south on Sahara desert's edges.

I visited a related site off Tozeur in the desert as part of a 4X4 jeep tour, impressive that some of the movie setting is still preserved (I guess as a tourism asset too) since 1984! - if my memory serves me right.

Maybe it's time I look more closely on this Star Wars thing!
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I visited a related site off Tozeur in the desert as part of a 4X4 jeep tour, impressive that some of the movie setting is still preserved (I guess as a tourism asset too) since 1984! - if my memory serves me right.


I'd read about that too, and was vastly entertained; if I were traveling in the area I'd probably go check them out myself. (Other fun-with-old-movie-sets: Some of the sets from the 1923 version of "The Ten Commandments" were unearthed in 2014 from the sands of the California location where they were buried after shooting ended. Here's an article about that: https://www.livescience.com/48321-ten-commandments-sphinx-unearthed.html )

Maybe it's time I look more closely on this Star Wars thing!


For me it was a major pop-cultural thing, as I was among those who saw the first film (now called "A New Hope" and listed as episode 4 in the series, what with the prequels being filmed long after the original trilogy) in theaters back in 1977. At the time it was a refreshing nod to even-older films, with awesome effects for the day (most of which still hold up well) and with such clear cues about the advent of the major villain that the entire audience hissed out loud when he first appeared. Great fun!

Opinions on the prequel trilogy vary. They're definitely not as much fun as the first three, but I still enjoyed bits and pieces of them, especially the spectacular light-saber battle in "Phantom Menace" between Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan vs. Darth Maul. (Best. Light-saber battle. Ever.) Sadly for the Shakespearian parodies, they pretty much have to treat the big-spectacle action sequences the way Shakespeare did, with characters describing what they're doing - or having folk rush in from offstage with messages about the results of the battles.
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On a different note, Lost Cat ( https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14724284 ) is "A True Story of Love, Desperation, and GPS Technology"; just browsing through it made me smile. And worry a bit, so I skipped to the end to make sure the cat would be OK. (Yes, I do that, especially for animal stories.)

Aww... wishlisted. Couldn't resist! :)
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I'm currently reading two non-fiction books: the first is called 'After the Crash' by Martin Spinelli. It chronicles the time after a car accident that killed his wife and severely injured his, then 4 year old, son. The story is interesting and somewhat inspiring but to be honest I'm struggling with it due to the author's/father's writing style and personality (or rather, the personality that comes across in the book). I'll persevere though. The other book is called, 'Following Atticus' by Tom Ryan and follows a man's journey from couch potato to winter mountain hiker with his small dog, Atticus. I'm finding this book much easier to get into. I love Atticus (I'm a real dog lover anyway) and Tom seems very personable. Their adventures are at times both emotional and funny.
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The other book is called, 'Following Atticus' by Tom Ryan and follows a man's journey from couch potato to winter mountain hiker with his small dog, Atticus. I'm finding this book much easier to get into. I love Atticus (I'm a real dog lover anyway) and Tom seems very personable. Their adventures are at times both emotional and funny.


That one sounds interesting! It's set in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, and as I live in the state and have read other books about mountaineering in the region, the book looks like one I'd enjoy. (The cute little dog on the cover doesn't hurt - though I'm already worrying about him on the more dangerous parts of the White Mountains, where sudden weather changes and tricky terrain have taken quite a few human lives...)
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Fourteen year old Jack builds his own canoe and sets out into his beloved Okefenokee Swamp where he tests his survival skills and discovers some mysteries.
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...Wicked Greek ( https://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14794833/ ), which includes wry sentences for avoiding "being eaten alive by giant one-eyed shepherds," among other things!
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When Nigeria begins to fall apart under a military coup, Kambaili's father sends her and her brother to stay with their aunt.
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Ooh... I've heard good things about that one! How are you liking it so far?
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Ooh... How are you liking it so far?


I picked it because it is on someone's wishlist and I thought I'd read it and send it on for Christmas. It is not my usual type of book BUT, I'm enjoying it more than I expected. I'm only about 100 pages in.
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Awesome! Thanks for the input. :)
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... "The Hidden Life of Trees" by Peter Wohlleben (not yet registered). It is for an upcoming book discussion group. Interesting subject matter, but it's getting off to a slow start for me. I hope it will pull me in a bit more as it goes on. It's translated from German and translations can be tricky. Still, it was a New York Times bestseller in English. Although, to be honest, that doesn't at all mean I will like it! My tastes tend to the quirky rather than the massively popular.
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Looks like a quick YA book, about robots taking over the world and the small group of human rebels trying to find a way to stop them.
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About 14 years ago I read this during a trip to Kopenhagen. As far as I remember I liked it quite well so it's time for a re-read.
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Gen can steal anything--or so he says. When his boasting lands him in prison and the king's magus invites him on a quest to steal a legendary object, he's in no position to refuse.

The magus thinks he has the right tool for the job but Gen has plans of his own.
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It's a collection of erotica short stories by various authors.

http://www.bookcrossing.com/---/14117812
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And the story behind the hoax is even better!

https://shepquest.files.wordpress.com/---/wsjournal-ilibertine.jpg

http://hoaxes.org/---/i_libertine



Thanks for the links. I had not heard of the hoax before.

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