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The Whistling Season by Ivan Doig

Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (Dover Thrift Editions) by Harriet Jacobs

Until I Find You: A Novel by John Irving

Modern American Painting by Peyton Jr Boswell

Feed by M.T. Anderson

Blue Highways: A Journey into America by William Least Heat-Moon

America: The Beautiful Land by Eric Inglefield

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Member: readaholic12

CollectionsYour library (1,297), Favorites (9), Currently reading (3), To read (294), Series (9), Wishlist (2), All collections (1,303)

Reviews204 reviews

Tagstbr (299), art (148), kindle (93), ya (71), nonfiction (63), top shelf (61), early reviewer (60), 2007 (59), 2012 (51), reference (47) — see all tags

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Recommendations4 recommendations

About meI'm a lifelong compulsive reader with too many books and not enough time. I have a husband, 2 teenagers, and a huge furry dog. I am addicted to online libraries like the University of Michigan's Making of America Project, Yale's Avalon Project, The Gutenberg Project, Pennsylvania's Past Digital Bookshelf, The Oxford University Early Manuscripts. And now, thanks to LibraryThing, all these amazing libraries to browse, reviews to read, books to add to my to be read list, when I should just be reading a book.

About my libraryI buy books in tangents of authors or topics. The more I read the more I need. My bookshelves are a travesty of double stacks and piles. Years of coordinating school used book sales and volunteering at book fairs, combined with an inability to pass up a library or rummage sale have tripled the size of my unread book pile. And now the kindle has ruined me by enabling my addiction, but at least there are fewer piles of books on the floor now.

I love fiction, historical fiction, non-fiction, memoir, science fiction, reference books and coffee table or picture books. I love books about books.

There are hundreds of beloved books from my past that public libraries own, not me, so I have left them unlisted. They know who they are.

Full disclosure, I am a total nerd:

GroupsA Pearl of Wisdom and Enlightenment, ARC Junkies, Art is Life, Bookcases: If You Build/Buy Them, They Will Fill, Early Reviewers, Genealogy@LT, Read YA Lit, Used Books

Favorite authorsCharles Baxter, Amy Bloom, Ray Bradbury, Bill Bryson, Annie Dillard, Kim Edwards, Kent Haruf, Joseph Heller, Frank Herbert, John Irving, Haven Kimmel, Barbara Kingsolver, Wally Lamb, Anne Lamott, Jeffrey Lent, Elizabeth Strout, J. R. R. Tolkien, Kurt Vonnegut (Shared favorites)


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Membership LibraryThing Early Reviewers/Member Giveaway

Real nameMel

LocationChicago suburbs

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/readaholic12 (profile)
/catalog/readaholic12 (library)

Member sinceJan 4, 2007

Currently readingBirds of America: Stories by Lorrie Moore
Brunelleschi's Dome: How a Renaissance Genius Reinvented Architecture by Ross King
The Geography of the Imagination: Forty Essays (Nonpareil Book, 78) by Guy Davenport

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mel, my newest, BOOKLOVER, is out. Hope you'll take a look. - tim
Hi Mel,

I just wanted to stop by and wish you and yours happy holidays and a wonderful new year. It's been a pleasure corresponding with you this past year, and I look forward to occasions to chat in the coming year. Happy celebrations!


Hey Mel,

How are you coming with Twisted River? I wish you could have been with me the other night--I got to hear John Irving speak! It's not the first time, but it's always a thrill.

Among other things, he talked at length about the influence of Dickens, Hardy, Hawthorne, and Melville on his work, and the importance he places on plot. He also said that like those writers he believes in long books filled with detail to really immerse the reader in the world created. And I remembered responding to your complaints about the logging info by asking, "Did Melville write too much about whaling?" Well, at least I got that one right, LOL.

I do hope you'rem enjoying it and that it's not just tedious. I could see it beeing an awful slog if that were the case.


Hi Mel,

I finally got the medication I need on Thursday, and I am doing much, much better. Thank you. It's a relief!

As for the Irving novel, I'm only on page 33--and I still have a few pages of the manuscript I'm supposed to be working on to finish, too. I totally see what you're saying about the slowness and the logging info, but I don't feel the same way that you do. I'm actually loving every word. Yes, there's a lot about the logging industry. Melville wrote a lot about whaling. Irving is painting a detailed picture for me. I don't know a thing about that world, so he's filling me in. Do I really need to know all the technical aspects of the trade? Probably not, and I'm not dwelling on those passages. But the setting of this novel is remarkably vivid.

And I find he does that with his characters as well. The detail, the intimacy, with which we'll get to know and understand Domenic, Danny, Ketchum and others. It's already begun, and it's so much richer than most writers are able to translate onto a page.

But more than anything, it's Irving's storytelling ability that I love. I love his use of language. Somehow it just speaks to me. I'd recognize anything he ever wrote, with or without his name on it. His voice it unique, and his stories (while often tragic) give me joy.

Look, I'm 33 pages in, and you've already got me reviewing it, LOL.

I do understand your frustration. Years ago I had trouble with A Son of the Circus. It wasn't that I didn't like the novel; I did. But I would get 200-300 pages into the book and I'd run out of steam. I'd set it aside for a couple of years. Finally on the third try I finished the whole thing. And I LOVED it! To this day, I don't know what my problem was, but sometimes you're just not in the right place to appreciate a book. And forcing the issue may make you dislike it, where as waiting may help a lot. Unfortunately, that may not be an option open to you, given the circumstances. Well, it's always an option. Anyway, I do hope that the novel turns around for you and than that you like it better.

Or, possibly I will get to page 76 and will write again in complete agreement with your assessment! :-)


Hi Mel,

I just wanted to say hello, and thank you for the kind notes you've left on my blog. I am not 100% yet, but I'm doing A LOT better than I was. The swine flu has played hell with my asthma. What are you gonna do?

So, I would be sick with jealousy that you got the Irving novel and I didn't (I can't believe I didn't get it!), but happily I got an advance copy through Amazon. The frustrating part is I haven't had time or energy to read it! I wasn't feeling quite healthy enough to give it the attention it deserved at first, and now I'm swamped with freelance editorial jobs that I have to finish before I can read for pleasure. So, I've only read the first few chapters. Are you loving it?

Saw you're diving into Neal Gaiman. I have a galley of The Graveyard Book in my house somewhere. I would have read it by now, but I can't find it. I think it's like way under the sofa or something. I will mention that I have really enjoyed his adult novels, especially American Gods and Neverwhere.

I wrote a review of a book a couple of months ago that you might enjoy, but I'm hesitant to recommend it to you. It's been REALLY polarizing among readers. I loved it. The book is Lev Grossman's The Magicians, FWIW. If you're at all interested, read across the spectrum of reviews, because a lot of readers were extremely negative.

And, finally, I see we were both delighted with the second volume in the Hunger Games series. God, another 11 months 'til book three!

I hope that things are all good on your end, Mel. It's always such a pleasure to hear from you. :-)



I'm sorry for this second reply, but I sort of aborted the the first one; it got late last night. I was going to complete last night's with a few words about Robert Louis Stevenson. He's written some of the best short pieces ever in the English language. I know I have paraphrased this Borges quote in my review of Treasure Island, but it bears repeating: "I like antique maps, hourglasses, 18th-century typestyles, the origin of words, the smell of coffee, and the prose of Stevenson."

Thanks for the kind words; I get very pumped up when complimented on my reviews. After writing my first few sort of off-handedly, I began to take some trouble with them, and try to make them useful. When I like something, I always try to make that clear, including specifics on why I like it.

I am trying to figure out how to write reviews of the books I read in years past. May I do a quick sampler? "Lolita" is a classic, stunning piece of fiction, a novel for the ages. If you haven't read it, you should do so, and no kidding, when you do, keep a dictionary handy. The purported charms of "One Hundred Years of Solitdue" by Marquez are lost on me. It took me a long, long time to read it (I felt an obligation to finish), and I nicknamed it "Six Months of Penance." On the other hand, Marquez wrote "Love in the Time of Cholera," which I recommend - BIG time! It hangs together so much better. There's a pretty good Cuban writer named Oscar Hijuelos; his novels aren't classically great, but "The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love" is highly underrated, and he wrote a kind of a companion-piece called "The Fourteen Sisters of Emilio Montez O'Brien," which is a very cool, very enjoyable work, too.

May I go on? I'm a complete devotee of the divine Jane Austen. For me "Persuasion" is her choicest novel, followed pretty closely by "Pride and Prejudice." Thomas Mann was by reputation a stuffy, hung-up individual, but he wrote some absolutely soaring fiction. My favorite of his novels is "The Magic Mountain," but he also wrote one of the best short pieces ever, "Death in Venice." "Doctor Faustus" is also quite good.

Let me know what you're fixin' to read - and maybe give me a recommendation, too.

Hi, thanks for adding me to your interesting libraries ! Looking at the books we share, I'm thinking you might enjoy the Girlybooks group. Don't let the name put you off -- it's "For people who make an effort to read books by and/or about women. Whether it's sci-fi, social sciences or literature, we support female writers and positive representations of women."

See you 'round!
Hello! Thanks for listing me as having an interesting lirbary--your's is as well.

I hope that you like Olive Kitterage...I have actually met Elizabeth Strout (She teaches at the school where I received my MFA) and she is a lovely lady. It's a great book. Amy and Isabell is quite good too.

BTW, your profile picture is lovely! It's quite beautiful!!

It's always nice to meet a fellow reader! :)
bill bryson did make me laugh very much! i am going to read every single thing he has ever written :) i loved olive kitteridge too. wasn't it just fantastic?????
Noticed you liked She's Come Undone, and I was wondering if you'd be interested in reviewing my new novel and posting your comments here as well as a few other book-related sites. Thought you might like my book since it's also about a disturbed young girl's downward spiral and a bit dark. I could e-mail you the novel in an e-book format if you'd like (I'm out of physical copies at the moment). Let me know if you're interested. Here's a link to a summary in case you're interested:


Hi Mel. Sorry for taking so long to get back to you. I was on vacation, but I should've gotten an email notification of a reply anyway, but didn't. In any case, thanks for getting back to me. The book sale will officially start next week with paper fliers going out with the students to hand to their parents and others. Otherwise, I've been spreading the word a bit via Twitter (Glydezilla is my name) and Facebook. The URL for the sale is to make it easy to remember and we've had a dozen or so sales already without even an official announcement. Anyway, I'd be happy to chat more about it over email or even the phone. You can email me here if you'd like: hurynna -at-

I'm curious about your comment, and how your book selling charity is going - it seems the online book resale market is a bit flooded and prices are down, but who knows? My kids have moved on to other schools, so I am no longer involved with the used book sale, but I stay in touch with the PTO members who are in charge. Book donations this year were down a bit, 9000 or so, mostly children's books, profits about the same, around a thousand dollars, and the remainders went to Bookworm Angels, the Children's Waiting Room at the county courthouse and Book Rescue. Two years ago we pondered online resales of a better books, but decided instead to price them higher - $2 instead of $1, and that worked well. We were relieved, actually, because we discovered with Operation Paperback, books for troops overseas, that the storage and shipping was a bit overwhelming for a bunch of volunteer moms! We're always interested in ways to do some good for the literacy cause, and look for new outlets for the books. Last year, we discovered by chance a school in a neighboring county with no budget for books and mostly lower income families so we filled a Suburban and drove them right over. How easy was that? Anyway, let me know what you were thinking, as I am the curious type!

btw, your library is very interesting.
Thanks. Some of them are real winners. Some of them I've actually donated to the sale. ;)
Hey mel,
I also had a chance to read the book, blue shoe by anne lamott. And i wanted to hear what you think about this discussion question

+Isa takes wonderful care of people, especially strangers. She fights for underdogs, champions their causes. Is she trying to help the world in order to compensate for her lack of control in her own home? Why is she such a hero to others, while her daughter feels deprived? Are Mattie's feelings of neglect justified? Do you think Isa was a devoted or neglectful mother to Alfred?

you can either leave a comment on my blog or email me

thank you so much
Hey Mel,

Thanks for the update. I'm so glad you enjoyed The Hunger Games! Every time someone brings it up, it reminds me how much I'm looking forward to the sequel. The worst part is, I think it's a trilogy. Even once we have the satisfaction of reading the sequel, we'll be left frustrated again waiting for the concluding novel. Aaarrrggh!



Interesting the number of books we have in common.What is common among them is that they are varier. How are you storing your collection
Hi Mel. Sorry to bug ya, but I wanted to respond to your post in the "Used bookstores vs. internet" thread about the madness that can ensue at FOL events. (I was post #36)

So, I work for a company that's actually helping out an elementary school with their literacy program. They're selling community donated books on our website and will use the proceeds from the sale to buy new books for their Accelerated Reader program.

Anyway, just a kernel thought at this point, but do you think there is some potential here to work together on something good? Feel free to email me at the address on my profile page if you'd like. Or you can just leave a comment there too. Either way.

Thanks and hope to hear from you.
- Nick

> 36 lol. At the last sale I chaired, and the first we advertised to the reseller community, we were shocked to see dozens lining up hours before the sale, and more shocked to see them grabbing entire boxes of books to hide in a corner and scan for high dollar resales. One man took all the Golden Books - hundreds of them - and hid them under his coat. I had to ask several of them to calm down, since this was primarily a literacy function designed to get books cheaply in the hands of elementary school kids, with leftovers going to disadvantaged schools, the court system, overseas troops and Goodwill. Greed took the wind out of my sails!I hope this year's committee is more careful about where they advertise, as I expect the current economy will ratchet the greed up a few notches!

I just started listing my unwanted books on, but the competition is fierce, and I have little expectation of selling many.
Hi Mel,

Thank you for your lovely note! What a pleasure to find at the start of my day. I just visited your profile, and have to say that you're no slouch as a reviewer. I'm now doubly flattered by you kind words. We actually share more books than you realize, as I've only managed to put a small portion of my library up. I need to finish that one of these days!

Funny you should mention Irving. He's my favorite author in the world, and A Prayer for Owen Meany is the best book I've ever read. Clearly we are sympatico. :-) BTW, did you know that Mr. Irving has a new novel out in October? I can't wait!

No, I haven't read 84 Charing Cross Road, and you're right, I really need to. Thanks for the reminder/recommendation. I have no doubt I'll love it. Meanwhile, I hope that you enjoy The Hunger Games as much as I did. I can't wait to get ahold of the next in the series and hope I don't have to wait until September.

I'm flattered you've listed mine as an "interesting library." Please feel free to drop a line any time. It was lovely "chatting" with you. One more thing... I recently started a literary blog here: It mostly holds exactly the same reviews I post on LT, but I will occasionally blog on other literary matters. I only started to tell a few friends about it yesterday, so the whole blogging thing is new to me, but you're welcome to check it out.

Thank you again for taking the time to write such a kind note, Mel. It was lovely to meet you.


thanks for your message. We do share quite alot of books. I, too, have tried to make a concerted effort over the past few years to read good literature - more classics and modern classics. And LT inspired me to keep more of a reading journal, which explains my prolific reviews. I loved Angle of Repose; I suspect it will remain one of my favorites for a long time. - I keep meaning to read one of his others.

I loved Poisonwood Bible at the time I read it. But it was a while ago - I wonder if I would still like it as much vs. finding it heavy-handed - I think Kingsolver can be a bit preachy. let me know what you think.

Glad my reviews were helpful to you - I'll keep my eye on yours as well -- Happy reading! Jen
hi - the picture on my profile is the Kurgan from Highlander. Such a great villain.
Hi! Yes, I am currently obsessed with science books, specifically elemental science. My 13 year old is learning the periodic table and so I go a few to use with her, but then got more and more interested! Some of the books are a bit dry, but then others, like "Mauve" are really interesting!

How are you doing hon? I hope great!
Hey again

LOVE IRVING!!! My all fave is The World According to GARP!!!!
LOVE IT!!!!!!
Quick question - who created the stained glass that is in your pr0file - Marc Chagall? I am a stained glass freak and love to tromp around churches that have beautiful stained glass.

Yes - Helene was a tiny little woman - but had a huge personality!!!!! I feel so fortunate to have met her before she died. Always has been a wonderful memory.


Thanks for the comment on my review....I always feel so goofy about writing the 4 I have written, because there are some reviews out there that are so much more "metaphysical" and more artistic than my scrawl.

Meeting Helene was a dream come true. I discovered her books via the movie with Anne Bancroft....fell in love with the movie and went searching out for all of her books!!! That picture was taken back in November of 1995..13 YRS AGO!!! She was very nice by agreeing to come to the lobby of her apartment building to meet a "fan". We chatted for about an hour and a half and the conversations are still in my head. She was such a lovely person to meet, a little shocking at her size and picked polyester clothing, but she did not find fortune as a writer. She should have!

Thanks again

hello...i just finished Away...i loved it as well...such a wonderful read!!

Thanks for popping around my little corners of the web :-)
Love what you say here about your burning need for information. I can't figure out if mine is a blessing or a curse!
Hello, I just got back from vacation and playing a little "catch up." I missed my LT fix! I don't think you will be disappointed with either Angle of Repose or Poisonwood Bible. Isn't it just so cool to find someone with similar reading tastes and peek into their library to get some recommendations? I'll be looking into some of your favorites when I get back into my routine. Thanks for your comments. Donna
Yes, I got "Between Here and April" by Deborah Copaken Kogan. However, I still haven't received the book from last month yet. Well, hope you get lucky the next round!
Dirty girl on top - I have an earlier book by this author in my library.
Hi! did you get anything from this batch? I did nab another one...
Hi! We share some of my long-time favorites, but this is about the Gilchrist we are reviewing for ER. I know wartime makes folks think of having babies (replacement) so perhaps that's why these 30-ish women are anxious to get pregnant. My question is this: how soon after conception will a home test confirm? I tried to figure it out. . . Gilchrist suggests the morning after, which I doubt. Do you know? (I will not raise the quibble in my review, but it's been nagging at me.) Thanks Esta1923
Thanks for the kind words over on my LibraryThing profile. I also wrote the publisher and received a nice email. I think it's important that we Early Reviewers thank the publishers and complete the reviews (the least we can do). I've been very lucky in receiving Early Review copies.

I post my reviews on my book blog: (newly designed from my old blog: I'm also in the process of setting up a children and young adult book spot: (WARNING: still under construction!).

Nice to meet you :-)
Yeah..."Bringing Home the Birkin". Don't tell anyone :) How about you??
You were my first comment on LT. Now I feel official, I guess I should really get going with adding my library now.
Thanks and DFTBA

Thanks for the kind note on my profile page. I apologize for taking so long to reply.

I was really overwhelmed by Seasonally Fit. Not at all what I had expected.

I "rotate the stock" as well. I hang on to books that really touch me, have sentimental value, are good reference books or are by the few authors that I am collecting. Otherwise if it's been read, it's out the door to my Mom or a friend or to the next used book sale!

Well, I hope that you enjoyed looking at my library. I have to admit that I stopped by and took a peek at yours, too. Very interesting!

Thanks for the nice words! I'm SOOOO glad your daughter is liking it. After all, I wrote it for young people, so that's a good thing.

Man, reading some of these LT reviews is hard on the ole self esteem. :-)
Hi - I think that we are the choosen books is the record so far :) Nice to meet you and look forward to looking through your library.
Thanks for dropping by my profile page. I wish I could tell you where that picture came from---I found it googling images of bookshelves, but it was on someone's blog, and I couldn't trace the source. "Magical" was the word that came to my mind when I saw it too. The History of Luzerne, Lackawanna and Wyoming Counties you asked me about was actually published in 1880. There is no indication anywhere of authorship. It is a marvelous book, and I could get lost in it for hours. The same is true of the 1893 Bradsby history. Many members of my husband's family are mentioned in their pages, which I presume is why these books were in the family treasure trove to begin with. It's been a few years since I did much on-line genealogical research. The PA Digital bookshelf is new to me, believe it or not. I sense a time-sink looming! I enjoy dipping into the Spear book for glimpses of early 20th century history. It has some great photos and illustrations. If I have anything you don't have access to, and you'd like me to browse for specific information, don't hesitate to ask. I love an excuse!
Mel, Just wanted to let you know the book arrived on Tuesday. Thanks again!

Oh excellent, thanks! You can send it here:

PO Box 391586
Cambridge, MA 02139

Want a t-shirt in return? I've got tons, just name your size and color (here)...
Thanks for the charming and welcome note on the big moths. Delighted to meet you! The closest we came this season was a hawkshead moth caterpillar which met its demise to some parasitic wasp larvae. Perhaps I'll order some cocoons so the rest of the family can appreciate the beauty of a cecropia!
Oh goodie... and I just received my copy of The Somnambulist today, and I'm waiting for three books through paperbackswap, so I've got lots of new, free books to read... now if only the spring semester weren't starting next week... oh my.

Once again, thanks for the book. At least I don't feel obligated to get a review of this one up as quickly as I do for The Somnambulist.

Thanks for taking the time to read (and comment on!) my reviews! I enjoy writing them, and enjoy having the record for my own sake of whether or not I liked a book, so if they're helpful to other people, that's just gravy!

I discovered John Green 100% through LT, so I'm not familiar with his other stuff (and actually, I haven't gotten around to reading An Abundance of Katherines yet - although it's on the pile, for sure).
Not annoying at all! I still have quite a bit of books to upload, but I ran out of steam. I also was uploading my music and movies, but it seems that LT is now frowning on that practice and have actually deleted a lot of the information and images that were attached to those items. So, not everything on my LT account are books, but the books that are on here are ones I have in my house right now. My list would be double this in size I have a feeling if I also included all I have read but don't have an actual copy of at home. Most of the books on my list have been read, but I did also upload all my kids' and husband's books.

I have always loved reading, but come from a family that doesn't really read. (Hmm... I wonder if that is why I thought I must have been adopted as a child?) I taught myself to read before starting school and would read anything I could get my hands on --- including the backs of soup cans and cereal boxes. My first memory of book love was The Little House by Virginia Lee Barton. I would beg my mom and grandparents to take me to the public library in my county and that seemed like heaven to me. I still feel that way to this day about Libraries and even though I am ashamed to admit it, I even feel it at the local behemoth chain booksellers.

There are a handful of books that have had a profound effect on me and have helped shape the person I am, just like you mentioned and it does seem that timing was important. Some books I thought were profound at 12 or 22 don't seem quite so amazing as I continue to grow in my own personal wisdom. ... but then there are other books that stun me on a later read so it is interesting. I am constantly struggling with whether to read a new book or re-read an old love!

I will write more later ... if I haven't rambled enough already!

Take care,
NerdSister! I wish you could see the ear to ear grin on my face.

I smiled when I saw some of the books we have in common, but then it doesn't suprise me in the least. I look forward to perusing you library later today after I get the kids off to school and check off the morning items on my to do list.

What did you think of Housekeeping? Was it a current discovery or did you read it quite a while ago?
Hello Readaholic (that is a handle that could apply to me as well) and thanks. btw, I love, love the picture you have from the Field museum in Chicago.
"so many excellent rabbit holes in which to get lost". I'm not familiar with some of the digital libraries on your list (but plan to become so, very soon).

hmm about Stardust and Neil Gaiman - I read an interview from October 2006 on Bookslut and I'm not sure if I'd like his other books or not. Unlike most authors, he writes across various genres, and while I happen to be very fond of fantasy, I don't know about other things he's written. The rule that has worked well for me in the past - that if I like a book, I'll like what else the author has written, does not seem to apply to him and he comments on that himself in the interview - that people like one thing he writes and then hate the next thing (which is why I thought I should mention it...). Our son likes his graphic novels, but I haven't seen them.

Yes, so many libraries, so little time :)

April D.
Hi Readaholic,

It interests me that you find my library interesting. Thanks for noticing (whatever it was that you noticed). I just add whatever it is that I'm currently reading to make a nice little sidebar on my blog ( Like you, I've got a house overstuffed with books. Though I can't say I remember what's in all of them, I do remember how each one came into my house and how it connects to my life. This must mean something.

Take care.

Hello there ~ Thanks for the interesting libraries add. After browsing your collection, i hope you don't mind that i've reciprocated.

i notice you've not read any Tim O'Brien and think you may enjoy him. The Things They Carried is a shortish book that manages to briefly touch on so much.

i see you also enjoy art books. You might wish to check out Jim Brandenburg's Chased by the Light. He's a well known photographer who took a 90-day break during which he took just one photograph per day while walking the land. The results are extraordinary.

Thanks again and take care!

You caught me at a weird time. I had an error with my library that LT couldn't fix, so I am in the process of re-uploading my entire library. Luckily, I borrowed a friends CueCat, so it hasn't been too terrible. I love Charles Baxter. Haven't read First Light yet, but I love his works. Haven't seen the film version of Feast of Love yet, but I plan on it. Where are you in Illinois? I'm originally from the Alton area.

Hi! I love your profile pic - I see that it's a poster, but is the original a stained-glass? That's sort of what it looks like. Regardless, it's stunning.

Hi Mel -

I was so glad someone knew the origin of my Dad's quote (he didn't even remember!)

To refresh your memory - From the Pearl of Wisdom thread...."Buckaroo Bonzai (played by Peter Weller) "remember, no matter where you go, there you are." One of my favorite movie quotes of all time!"

Thanks! I've been so busy and LT can be a big obsession when I get into it... I just caught up on the threads there and saw your post.

As things go, I just picked up a copy of The Year of Magical Thinking... why should I be surprised to see it mentioned here in your profile posts (I didn't mean to be nosy even!)... it looks like an interesting book.

I think your "about me" paragraph was great... I can totally relate. I've too many books to list so my library is a bit off balance with more recent obsessions.

If you don't mind, I may get back to you with some thoughts after reading Didion's book... its always nice to hear what someone else got out of a book.

Mel, I am glad that you find the Year of Magical Thinking both interesting and powerful. I read the book shortly after a ten year relationship ended. That first year was a year of grief, growth, and lots of magical thinking. When the telephone ring, my first thought and hope it was Nancy calling me. I think when we lost something so powerful in our life to keep going we need magical thinking.
Hullo. Glad that you found my library interesting. And yes, Housekeeping is one of my favorite books of all time... Oddly enough, the woman who originally recommended the book to me originally about eleven years ago just dropped into my life again about a week ago.

I've read a bit of Bloom, but have yet to make it to Away. The book that I normally recommend as an accompaniment to the Robinson is Joan Didion's The Year of Magical Thinking, which I see you have in your catalog but without rating. I'm not sure whether that means that you've not read it yet or not.

I was talking to Katharine Weber the other day, and she told me to check out Annie Dillard's first novel (whose title escapes me at the moment) for something in a similar vein. And she also recommended Kate Maloy's Every Last Cuckoo, which I've not read yet. I'm a bit wary of the Maloy recommendation as Kate's a bit of a friend of Katharine and me. I'm not always so fond of reading things that friends have written. It can put one in an uncomfortable position if we don't necessarily like what's going on.

After looking through my reading journal for the past 2ish years, I'd probably say that if I were to make one recommendation based on our shared like of Housekeeping, it would be William Maxwell's So Long, See You Tomorrow. Aside from that, maybe some of the lesser Garcia-Marquez books or the less strident Jeannette Winterson's.

Thanks again for that add.
Hi Mel, this is Michael Bartley, thank you for adding my library to your interesting list. As a book lover, I like it when other book lovers share my interest and like my books. I am happy to see that you have and hopefully read Angle of Repose. That is one of my all time favortie books. At the moment I am to read Sodom and Gomorrah by Proust, it is v.4 in 6 volumes of In Search of Lost Time, my goal is to read all 6. He is very good, but also very hard. I also just started Eichmann in Jerusalem by Hannah Arendt. A study on evil.
I am glad that your kids are also readers it is a great gift to give to young people. I work as a volunteer in a middle school, last year I started giving books to students that were doing well or just needed some adult to say I believe in you. I was suprised how much the kids loved it. By the way Moby Dick was a big favorite with the boys. Happy reading
Lovely to meet a fellow Annie Dillard fan. And reading Hunter Thompson's "Las Vegas" novel utterly changed my life...though for reasons I can't give because the statute of limitations for certain activities has yet to pass. Keep reading critically and often...
read water for elephants over the weekend. loved it!
thanks for the tip on water for elephants. i actually just purchased it last week when i went on vacation but never got around to doing any reading :) i will try to get into it this weekend. i am praying i will be as impressed as everyone else!!
Hello Mel!

I'm honored, indeed, to know that you like my library. I'm looking forward
to browsing through your collection as well.

As far as my posted photograph, I've been trying to recall the threads that
brought me to her. Isn't she so beautiful and interesting! I think, from here
on out, I'll do better in documenting my captured images, as I so often return
to them and wish to explore them more deeply.

I promise you, when I uncover her origins, I shall disclose them at once!

Thanks for joining Art is Life! Look forward to seeing a comment from you there real soon.
Thanks for stopping by my library and leaving a comment. I see we share many books, as well as the fundraising urge! I have always thought of books as an alternative form of currency anyway -- trading books instead of all those sheets of green paper!

I am in awe of your library....I can't believe the number of books you have listed. Great work, and I look forward to seeing more of your listings.

Take care, and warm regards,
well thanks for the tip. i have over 200 books on my to be read shelf at home already so it may be a while before i buy any new ones. :) the red tent is wonderful. you will absolutely love it! browsing your to be read list, i must suggest you read the poisonwood bible and the awakening soon, they are both excellent as well! good luck with your reading list!!
Hi again from Saint John. I checked out your reviews since we have so many books in common. I totally agree with you about Fall On Your Knees....I hated it. I also love John Irving...he is probably my favorite American writer. I noticed you had written a positive review of The Kite Runner. I have bought it recently and although I have heard it is very sad, your review has made me think I need to read it. Right now I am reading Helen Keller's book on spirituality along with a P.D. James mystery. So little many books!!! bye for now, Brenda
we share just 1 book: The Corrections by J.Franzen. I share your review of it, i felt the same reading it. I just finished another book by J.Franzen which i liked very much: Strong Motion
Re: your comment--your reviews are good! I was actually afraid to write reviews that were much longer, because they took up so much space on my editor page--I didn't realize that people could read them all on a separate page with a different layout where they'd look much less crammed. You're also much more widely read than I am. : )
Hello! I read your "about me" and thought to, another person who haunts used book stores and yard sales for books. I am a teacher in New Brunswick Canada and love love love to read both to my students and myself. If I go to a used book store and see a bargain, I have to buy it even if I have it....I can always pass it on to a friend! We have quite a few books in common. You have great taste! Drop by and visit my library some time!

p.s. Sounds like we could use you at our school...that is amazing how much you were about to collect for your school---congratulations! There is nothing better than encouraging and giving children the opportunity to read.

welcome to librarything and prepare to be addicted. my to be read list has doubled since i signed up!! ;) your library is impressive. feel free to stop by my page with suggestions anytime! happy reading!
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