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Bellman & Black: A Novel by Diane Setterfield

Girl Trouble: Stories (P.S.) by Holly Goddard Jones

The Passing Bells by Phillip Rock

The Never List by Koethi Zan

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

A Suitable Boy: A Novel (Perennial Classics) by Vikram Seth

In the Bleak Midwinter (A Rev. Clare Fergusson and Russ Van Alstyne Mystery) by Julia Spencer-Fleming

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Interesting library: abruno, akreese, Alirambles, astults, BannedBooksLibrary, Bbexlibris, bermudaonion, blithebabbler, bnbooklady, BookBully, BookishRuth, boswellbaxter, Caramellunacy, Christy., CTmom, DarS, DevourerOfBooks, EHJackson, emigre, fyrefly98, GCPLreader, Hollister5320, imperfectmanx, indygo88, janefan, JaynePupek, Jetton, jsherri, judicz, kaelirenee, Kasthu, KCstl, Kegsoccer, kikib, Lallybroch, LauraBrook, LawMom4282, Leser, letseatgrandpa, LisaMM, littlebookworm, Louanne, mcna217, MissMermaid118, miyurose, mrstreme, MyUtopia, NeedMoreShelves, nsg0223, sagustocox, Sandee565717 more, sarahjanesandra, schmadeke, Shannan79, shootingstarr7, sky34, Stei0923, sunnysmileqt, tanzanite, thebooky, thisismebecca, tls1215, veens, whitreidtan, WisteriaLeigh, woodbear, wordwanderer, zibilee

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Member: LiterateHousewife

CollectionsYour library (1,695), A Moveable Feast (17), ARC (134), Audio Book (356), Autographed (39), Book Tour (25), Bought (563), Currently reading (3), Early Reviews (9), Favorites (7), Gift (62), Hardcover (58), Kindle (317), Library (18), Loan (8), Paperback (73), Play Books (13), Prize (24), Requested (29), Review Copy (68), Review Pending (21), Shelved (188), To read (738), Unsolicited (20), All collections (1,696)

Reviews355 reviews

Tagsbook review (201), to post here (199), fiction (168), female author (121), Historical Fiction (92), male author (56), Books (43), Reading (38), DNF (31), Culture (30) — see all tags

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About meI am a native of Grand Rapids, MI living in Roanoke, VA.

I love all sorts of books, but historical fiction has become a recent favorite. I also enjoy reading books by new authors. I don't seem to have the dedication or discipline to write myself, so I live vicariously through those my age who do.

When I'm not reading I work as a business analyst/Agile project manager and am currently working my way toward a career in web development. I am married and have two daughters - Emma (11) and Allison (9). We adopted Emma and then, after losing a lot of weight, I became pregnant with Allison. Ally was born a scant 25 minutes before Emma's 2nd birthday.

About my libraryI have always loved to read AND own books. Ever since I've been old enough to earn money I've been buying books. I cannot not buy books. I've tried the whole library thing, but the fines escalate to the cost of buying the book in the first place. HA!

Groups50 Book Challenge, ARC Junkies, Bloggers, Early Reviewers, Historical Fiction

Favorite authorsPoppy Adams, Louisa May Alcott, Raymond L. Atkins, Christine Blevins, Tracy Chevalier, Alan Drew, William Faulkner, Andrew Sean Greer, Philippa Gregory, Lauren Groff, Mark Haddon, Georgette Heyer, Khaled Hosseini, Sherry Jones, Norah Lofts, Erika Mailman, Vanina Marsot, Yann Martel, Margaret Mitchell, Marisha Pessl, Diane Setterfield, Louise Shaffer, John Steinbeck, Jeannette Walls, Alison Weir, Christine Weiser (Shared favorites)


Favorite bookstoresRam's Head Book Shop


Also onFacebook, Twitter, Wordpress

Membership LibraryThing Early Reviewers/Member Giveaway

Real nameJennifer

LocationRoanoke, VA

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/LiterateHousewife (profile)
/catalog/LiterateHousewife (library)

Member sinceOct 28, 2007

Currently readingThe Paying Guests by Sarah Waters
The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II by Denise Kiernan
The May Bride: A Novel by Suzannah Dunn

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Hi Jennifer! Thanks for "friending" me. It was so nice meeting you in Asheville. I have "The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry", waiting nearby on audio and I am very jealous that you are reading the new Tana French. I am a big fan. I hope you have a great holiday weekend.

Hey Jennifer,

I just noticed you have Cloud Atlas in your library, but it's not rated. If you're up for reading it I'm hosting my first readalong in March with Care (Care's Online Book Club) and that's the book we picked! You should join in if your reading schedule isn't booked. I keep hearing it's a book that sparks great discussions.

-Melissa (Avid Reader)
Hi Jennifer. I just checked my CC statement online this AM and saw that I'd been billed for BBB from NING. I thought this was taken care of. Unfortunately it doesn't appear that my billing information is off the account. I'll either be doing one of two things depending on what I'm able to do - removing my billing information from the site which will give you a 20-day grace period to make a payment decision or canceling the service complete which will take the site down. I'll be doing this tomorrow which is the start of my weekend. ~ Marcia
Hey Jennifer! and, yes, I'm enjoying your sites and keeping in touch with you. Always good to hear about someone who, like me, can't be happy not owning a great book. And I'll pass your Decemberists comments to Levi. She is proud of all three of her kids and has been a bit taken aback by all of the hoopla around the group. Levi is an unreal runner - five years ago at age 60 she came in fourth in her age group at the NYC Marathon. So she's a huge inspiration for those of us who hope to keep running as we - gulp - age.

Love your blog and admire your reviews. I'm hoping to be more of a bully/matchmaker and bring readers together with books they (hopefully) love. If you enjoy well-written historical mysteries do check out the Charles Todd series starting with "A Test of Wills." It's written by a mother/son team and I believe it's the son who lives in VA.

Grand Rapids, eh? As a teenager I spent two years living on Lake Huron in a tiny town in Ontario. We never did get over to western Michigan but spent some time in the Port Huron/Sarnia area. Beautiful country!

Looking forward to getting to know you! and hearing about all your reading (and parenting) exploits. Best, Ellison
Didn't realise you were on Librarything too! Ha, a whole new medium through which to stalk your book thoughts... Just found your Seamstress review - I loved it too.
when you finish making them , could you send me some bookmarks ?
Thank you for your help. I'm having a great time blogging. The one thing I have found is that I'm really annoyed with I'm just going to deal with it until I decide that I can't any longer. Best wishes!
You're awesome. That worked perfectly. Thank you so much for sending me details on how to do that! Love your blog by the way.

I have been reading your blog for awhile and I was wondering how you got your current reads and library thing elements on the side of your website. Any info would be great, I'd love to put mine on my blog...
I see that you are reading Alice I Have Been. We have similar libraries so possibly similar taste? I have been contemplating buying Alice I Have Been. How do you like it so far?
My latest vote for best new MI book is Season of Water and Ice, by Donald Lystra. A beautiful coming of age tale, young love, etc. And written by a guy nearly as old as I am. See my review. Happy new year. - Tim
Wasn't The Help" Great!It's right up there at the top of my list as best book this year.I finally read The Shadow in the Wind and just loved that one too.
I'm still working on it, its really slow.I keep waiting for more to happen.Think it might have been better on audio .But I'm still plugging away at it.
I see you really liked The Shadow of the Wind, thats next months book looking forward to that one.
Hi I'm in your FB book club .I'm enjoying The Brothers Boswell so far!
I can sympathize with your wishing for a Midwest book. We lived in MD for 21 yrs when I was still working and it was always such a pleasant relief to come back to MI to visit relatives. We've been retired back here to my hometown now for nearly 8 yrs now and it's such a slow-paced life in comparison. We do not miss the Baltimore- Washington area at all. Grand Rapids was (is) the "big city" now for us. And it still is a very VERY white-bread conservative place - all those Dutchmen, doncha know. Oooh, I see you just rated Dogs of Babel. I read that a few years ago and didn't much care for it at all. A bit too over the top. My favorite "dog book" is a memoir by Hal Borland called The Dog Who Came to Stay. A couple more good midwest memoirs are by Curtis Harnack (Iowa) - We Have All Gone Away and The Attic (which I'm reading right now). Or Debra Marquart's The Horizontal World, about her farm girlhood in ND and how she could wait to "escape." So many books ... - Tim
P.S. Wanna read a good Midwest memoir for booklovers? Read Mike Dirda's An Open Book. I loved it. - Tim
Just read your review of STEALING BUDDHA'S DINNER. I was only slightly kinder in mine, maybe cutting Nguyen a little slack because I'm from MI. I had to really struggle to finish it, and now feel like I kinda wasted my time. And I wanted to like it, because it has been selected as this year's GREAT MICHIGAN READ. Which, now that I've read the book, just embarrasses me. I think maybe most reviewers made too much of the fact that poor Nguyen was an "immigrant," when she seems to be, in reality, a fully assimilated American kid. She was, after all, less than a year old when she got here. Ah, well. I don't think I'll bother with her new novel, not after reading this book. - Tim
Thanks for accepting my friendsip invitation. I am new to librarything and want to explore and learn how to add books and catalog them etc etc....
The Crimson Petal and the White is massive- 8, or 900 pages or so, but it starts out so great that you'll quickly become hooked. I read it in about 4 days. It is quite good (I always love a bawdy Victorian prostitution story),--- but being an elementary teacher, you'll see why the 3rd act doesn't work for me. enjoy!
Lovely review of Last Light over Carolina
by Mary Alice Monroe--can't wait to reserve it! I'm just back from vacation on the Gulf Coast and the sights, sounds, and smells of the shrimping boats are still fresh in my memory.

I've had a wonderful summer of reading so far with We Need to Talk About Kevin, City of Thieves, It, The Sparrow, and Mudbound being some of my favorites. :o)
It's been quite a while since I read the book, so I honestly don't remember how the two of them compare. I liked the ending in the movie though - bittersweet, but it just felt right to me.

I just read your review of Possession - I struggled with the book as well when I read it, but I really enjoyed the movie. I had some issues with the contemporary story, but I thought the scenes between Jennifer Ehle and Jeremy Northam really sizzled. I hope you enjoy it!

Thanks for accepting my friend invitation. I really enjoy your blog and book reviews.

Great review of Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society. I agree with you about the lost art of letter writing. I love email too, but there's nothing like receiving a letter in the mail.
Beth Aldridge
922 Summerfield Rd
Santa Rosa, CA 95405

Very much so! I wouldn't live anywhere else.
Hey Jennifer,

I saw you have "The Jewel Trader of Pegu: A Novel" in your library. Have you read it? It was just offered to me by HarperCollins and I'm trying to decide whether or not to accept.
Yes, we are quite happy here. The weather is mild and the economy isn't as bad here.
Yes, I live in Austin : )
No, I lived in Detroit & St. Clair Shores for my first 24 years of life, but have for the last 5 years been in Texas.
I am really glad you liked the books! I took a chance with the Heyer, but the Dress Lodger was a favorite, and when I saw that you had books of the same type I took a chance with it. Hope you had a very Happy Holiday, and hope you have a great reading year ahead! I will also pass along titles that I think you might enjoy when I run across them!
Hello, I am also a Michigander, born and raised in Detroit. You have a very interesting collection of books.
I received my Santa Thing package today. Thanks so much for picking out some interesting choices. I'm really looking forward to reading them both- I'll probably read Benjamin Button tonight or tomorrow! And I've never heard of The Monsters of Templeton, but it looks like it will be right up my alley.

Happy Holidays!
"The Uncommon Reader" is packed uo and will be mailed tomorrow, enjoy.

I have "Uncommon Reader" on my TBR stack. I can read it soon and would love to trade with you. Send me a message if you're interested.

The only cookbook offer I've gotten is from Bostick. I actually got the cookbook this week and it is gorgeous. I don't know who was more excited when it came - me or Carl. We're going to try a recipe for cabbage soup out of it this weekend.
Wow! Thanks! Did you get an ARC of it? I couldn't figure out how to request one.
I can't wait to see what you think of Schulz and Peanuts. I love Snoopy, so that one looks good to me.
Thanks for adding BannedBooksLibrary to your Interesting Libraries, Jennifer. Happy Reading!
I found your website from the BBAW nominees and added your blog to my blog list and would love to have you as a friend here as well! My blog is in my profile, I just started it in July so I'm meeting wonderful book loving friends in blogging world!

I thought your review of Pattern Recognition was interesting (it popped up on my 'in my library and reviewed by others' list) - it's a book I really like, and it's my sister's favorite book. I wanted to point out, though, that Cayce is pronounced Case, not Casey.
What is life?
It is the flash of a firefly in the night.
It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime.
It is the little shadow which runs across
the grass and loses itself in the sunset.

Crowfoot, Blackfoot warrior and orator 1830 - 1890
No, anyone can comment on AuthorChat any time during the two week process. And I just confirmed with LT that I can do a book giveaway raffle at the end. Yay! Thanks and see you there!
Got the book today :)Thanks. Lol and I love your personalized post it!
Sounds like you have a fun evening planned to end a busy week. I'm doing laundry. How's that for Friday night fun! But I do have a signing tomorrow so I can temporarily be transported away from housework then. :)
Hello there,

Just browsing around LT today and thought I'd say hi, hola, ciao, bonjour, et. al.


Thanks! I'm not a native Virginian either (I grew up in Oklahoma). I'm really excited about blogging and am determined to stick with it! Thanks for the words of support. I've added your blog to my blogroll, though I don't know how much traffic I'll send your way at the beginning!

Curious George is a member of our household, too. Boy, does he get around. Yes, getting ready to send her off to Kindergarten. It seems so fast to me, but she is so excited and already starting to read a few words. Yay! And I'm excited to have time with my 3 year old alone. That will be special. Yes, I write, too. I think I would be crazy if I didn't have that go-to activity in addition to being a mom. I hope you do write someday! Keep me posted.

Besides C. G., what are you reading right now?

Thank you, thank you for accepting my request! Always nice to meet another book lover and MOM of two kids, back to back! Mine are 5 and 3 and half. So, I guess we are also both reading Dr. Seuss at the moment as well.


I posted my review of Through a Glass Darkly on my blog @
I am almost finished with Through A Glass Darkly and let me tell you, I am loving this book! I carpool with my love (husband) and this morning I sat in the car after dropping him off for like 20 minutes because the part I was at was way too good to put down! At least I made it in to work on time! I will post my review when done!
I started a blog and I hope you don't mind, but I added a link to your blog. Please check it out, but keep in mind that this is my first time and I am still "under construction".
Thanks for adding me as a friend! I actually read your blog regularly, so it's nice to see you here. I look forward to looking through your library and finding more lives to live.
Hey, I just ordered your book from Amazon. I'll let you know when I get a tracking number for it.
I started it last night and am about 1/3 of the way through. If I wasn't reviewing it I would just leave it in my purse as a "grocery store line is really long" kind of book. It is fairly entertaining, but gets a little boring/repetitive after 3 or 4 stories.
Did you get contacted about "Have I Got A Guy For You" too? I saw that you're one of two other people that have added it to their library.
Hey, I'm DevourerOfBooks now!
I know, I still need to set up a separate page too. There's no way I'm adding all those to my regular blog roll, that would be totally out of control.
So there isn't a separate group, but that would be a great idea! It is discussed in the "Book Blogs Web Ring" thread, but the prompts are on the Boston Bibliophile blog. Here is today's.
how did you end up changing your user name? I want to change mine keeps saying that the function is disabled. );
No, haven't started it yet... going to see Alison Weir tomorrow night though... I'm going to take it with me to the Shore this weekend (not that I believe it will be warm enough to sit on the beach, but at least on the porch!)
Oooh -- I'd love to change my name... I didn't even realize it was an option.... good to know!
I made that kind of mistake when I signed up my blog - I called it one thing (books on the brain) but have my name everywhere as lisamm. Why the heck did I do that?

I wouldn't have known this was "you" without seeing your post on the blog ring post on ER with your literatehousewife blog listed!
Lol I'm sure the powers that be would be able to change your name if you want to. I'll admit I didn't make the literate housewife connection right away :)
Hey, thanks for the friend invite :)
Basically it is going to be a contest to win any book I've reviewed. People will have to tell me which book they want, and why, extra points for extra comments, doubled points for posting about it on their blogs.
Okay, I need your opinion. I want to have a contest for my 100th post. I've blogged 80 posts so far. Should I announce the contest now/very soon, and announce the winner with my 100th post (which is not necessarily a fixed amount of time, but would probably be 3 weeks or so), or should I announce the contest with the 100th post and then give everyone 2 weeks. This is all a bit harder b/c in 1 month I'll be gone for 9 days for work, then only about 2 weeks until the wedding...
Okay, so do we have any ideas for how to work this contest/challenge?
The book came to my office on Saturday, so now I've got it. It is taking a place NEAR the top of the TBR pile. I just have to finish Franklin and Lucy first, then somebody's library book they loaned me (but it is just a Jodi Picoult, it will go fast). Venetian Mask may or may not get read before it, depending on when it comes (they didn't get the book to me fast, do I really need to review it fast?).
Thanks so much! I used to live actually in the city of Chicago, but now I live in the Northwest suburbs. I work on the North side of the city, though. However, since I live in a condo with just a little mailbox and no ability for packages to be left, I ALWAYS give out my work address for anything book-size and bigger, so that I don't have to get to the post office to pick stuff up.
Yah, I know, we don't have a very big place right now and I have eked out about all the room I can for books (without just piling them on every available surface). I just had to go and get rid of some for what may have been the first time ever. I mostly ditched old text books and my husband's books that neither of us will read again. I did get rid of a few of mine that I don't particularly care for and won't read again, though. Even though they were books I don't much like, it was a hard thing to do. However, I sold them back to a used bookstore, so I got to take that money and just buy more books! Plus, now I actually have space for more books.
I feel the same way about actually owning my books. When I borrow them from the library or from other people I end up feeling disappointed later because I can't go back to them. I think I will be using your library as recommendations for new books to buy since we share so many books.
Hi, Jennifer: I also reviewed Dreamers of the Day, and I thought your review was really good. I also enjoyed reading your blog! I hope you enjoy taking time for yourself in 2008 with lots of books, blogging and little kid hugs!

Happy Reading!
We actually had a pretty good response to the book in our group (we even have one guy and he really liked it -- though I think he liked the author even more!) -- I love to cook, so I was ok with the food parts (the author also writes for food magazines) -- I thought it was really well-written, and I liked how human everyone was. And I agree-- the paperback cover was not so good.

If I told you that I've also met Philippa Gregory and Jodi Picoult you probably will never like me, but I have... I go to booksignings all the time -- and I'm fortunate enough to live in a city where just about everyone comes through on their book tours... It's like crack for me... I can't get enough. And we've had a few authors at our group, too -- I'm very bold with stuff like that -- if I like a book, I'll email the author and if they live nearby, I invite them to our meetings. If not, sometimes we just email back and forth -- but I think it's really important to let authors know how much you liked a book-- they all say it means a lot to them to hear that!
Hi Jennifer... looking through your book list is like looking on my shelves! I see that you're a Jodi Picoult fan, too -- I highly recommend My Sister's Keeper and Plain Truth if you haven't read those yet.

Also, I went to a booksigning by Haven Kimmel recently (I adored Zippy and then She Got Up Off the Couch) -- I was SO impressed with her in person -- she has a lovely reading voice, and a wonderful personality. I would have liked to have gone out to dinner with her afterwards and continued talking!

Finally, what did you think of You're Not You? You're the only other person outside my book group at work that I know who has read it... I found it because I loved the hardcover cover and really liked the story... I contacted Michelle Wildgen and she was nice enough to come to our book group meeting in March. Really nice person -- I liked her very much. I'm looking forward to her writing some more.

I just wanted to drop you a note and let you know that I've really enjoyed reading your very thoughtful reviews.
I've added you to my list of interesting libraries. Thanks for giving me a preview of some of the books I may want to read, and thanks also for letting me relive some of my more recent reads in your reviews.

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