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Member: tututhefirst

CollectionsYour library (2,924), Currently reading (11), Audio books (571), E-book (198), Review copies (367), Awaiting Review (3), Read but unowned (452), ongoing reads (3), To read (331), Wishlist (27), RJ Books (330), Wishlist - NOOK (21), TBR then pass on (4), Military (13), Classics (60), Naval/nautical (29), Lisa books (1), Religion (108), Favorites (20), Cooksbooks, hobbies, gardening, DIY (55), Weeds (1), On Loan (37), Borrowed (21), Inherited (108), DNF, try later (77), DNF-gave away; keep 4 review info (21), travel, nature guides (48), Listen later (2), Portuguese language (2), Dictionaries, atlases, almanacs (13), Donated/gave away (11), summer (52), Children's/YA books (76), On Loan-STPL (47), All collections (3,736)

Reviews730 reviews

Tagsfiction (544), mystery (453), HM12 (218), ARC (195), 999 challenge (139), MRC13 (118), xyz (107), tbr (102), religion (101), nil (91) — see all tags

Cloudstag cloud, author cloud

About meThis library belongs to both Bob and Tina (separate collections). We've always thought of them as being 'ours' anyway, but with a Writer and Librarian living together-yikes- the piles of books! He's the Writer, retired Navy, retired HS history/social studies teacher,researching his 2nd book while looking for publisher for 1st (a suspense/thriller). We both love long walks, lighthouses, birdfeeding, gardening (he does all the work, I pick the flowers and vegetables), and READING.
I'm volunteer librarian at our small town library (pop. 1400) here in coastal Maine. I recently helped complete the automation of their small (5000-6000) collection, and keep the computers up and running. I have an MLS from Catholic University ('77) and never really had a chance to be a librarian until we retired here a few years ago. Our grown children and their families live in Virginia, so we travel back there several times a year to visit, but dearly love the New England laid back life style.

I have a blog to keep track of various musings about books that don't necessarily fit into any specific LT thread. It's here at Tutu's Two Cents. Stop by and put in your pennies.

I also do advanced pub reviews for new and recently published books - a wonderful "job" that keeps me reading about 4-6 books a week.

I'm an audio book freak - always have at least 2 going at once, and even read "in the pool" (where I work out 3-4 times a week) thanks to a waterproof arm pouch for my MP3 player. Because my arthritis makes it difficult to hold heavy books (hardbacks), I love reading on my Nook- especially since I can get "loaner" books through our library's download program, and most of the publishers now send their review copies electronically.

I try to review every new book I read, and blab with other LTers at the 75 Book Challenge the current year.

About my libraryThe eclectic collection of two bookaholics. Heavy on history-particularly military, US, Brazilian. Many books in Portuguese (the Branco side of the family). Cookbooks, thrillers, fiction, mysteries, and a fair sprinkling of philosophy, poetry, and religion. Also almost 500 children's books, including classic golden books. Currently about 1/3 cataloged. We also inherited several hundred from a dear auntie on the west coast (talk about shipping costs) who used her weekly Bingo winnings to buy books from the bargain tables at B&N. She died at 94 leaving tons of tbr's and since we both adored her, we feel obligated (hurt me, hurt me, she says) to add those to our tbr list.

We designed and built this house to include a real library with floor to nine foot ceiling shelves, but we've way outgrown that, and have spilled into EVERY room in the house. Thanks goodness for the dumb waiter that goes to the attic! We've now purchased a space heater (for wintah) and fan (for summah) for the attic to allow us to convert the unfinished room into stacks for a library annex.

Someday I hope to be able to finish unpacking and cataloging the 60+ cartons still lurking up there. Wireless laptop helps immensely. I think we'll end up with as many books as they have at the town library!

Groups1010 Category Challenge, 75 Books Challenge for 2008, 75 Books Challenge for 2009, 75 Books Challenge for 2010, 75 Books Challenge for 2011, 75 Books Challenge for 2012, 75 Books Challenge for 2013, 75 Books Challenge for 2014, 999 Challenge, ARC Junkiesshow all groups

Favorite authorsDavid Baldacci, Maeve Binchy, Rita Mae Brown, Thomas Cahill, Elizabeth George, Margaret George, John Grisham, J. A. Jance (Shared favorites)


Favorite bookstoresScottie's Book House

Favorite librariesSouth Thomaston Public Library


Also onFacebook

Membership LibraryThing Early Reviewers/Member Giveaway

Real nameTina Branco

LocationSouth Thomaston ME

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs /profile/tututhefirst (profile)
/catalog/tututhefirst (library)

Member sinceJul 30, 2008

Currently readingThe Wednesday Daughters: A Novel by Meg Waite Clayton
The Nuns of Sant'Ambrogio: The True Story of a Convent in Scandal by Hubert Wolf
The Last Taxi Ride: A Ranjit Singh Novel by A.X. Ahmad
The Ploughmen: A Novel by Kim Zupan
The Lobster Kings: A Novel by Alexi Zentner
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Thanks, Tina!

I'll take a look at LibraryWorld (we have our bi-monthly library meeting next week, so better get on it!) I did consider LibraryThing for Libraries a few years ago, but when I enquired as to how it might work for us, I was told it's more for bigger libraries, and LibraryThing itself would be better for us. But of course, we can't do the lending side of things on it.

Much appreciated,

Hi Tina,

I see from your profile that you helped with the automation of a small library. I volunteer at our club library, which is equally small, if not smaller (and a 'stand-alone), and I was wondering what programme you use for lending books, etc.

We use something based on Access that an ex ex volunteer librarian created, but it's old and cranky (frankly, I'm a bit scared of upsetting it) and we have to use Windows 98 to run it. Unfortunately, our budget is tiny, so we can't afford to replace it easily, and most available programmes are for bigger libraries with different branches. I'm asking around because I'm sure it's going to need replacing some day.


Oh man, that book festival sounds amazing. Unfortunately I have three family birthday parties this weekend that I am already committed to. Thanks for letting me know about it though. I would have loved to go and meet both you and your husband!
I meant to also say, your house full of books and 9-foot shelves sounds wonderful!
I really appreciate your thoughtful and long review of Heretics and Heroes by Thomas Cahill. He wrote an intriguing introduction and afterword to an undated book I have, and so I looked him up...I have How the Irish Saved Civilization, but haven't read much of it or anything else by him. (The book is Gunnar's Daughter by Sigrid Undset, which he self-published at Ampersand Press. Since he brought it back it has been reissued, maybe even a new translation, I'm not sure.) For some reason he did not put the date it was published...just indicated 1936 (First English edition by Knoph) and 1909 (First Norwegian edition).
Tina, thanks for the message re: the Ceepak mysteries. I discovered them last year and I love them! I think I am all caught up, although now that I'm thinking about it I'm not sure if I've read the most recent. I'll have to go check out the series page.
Tina, sounds like your family is in pretty good shape. I'm glad you and your sisters are able and willing to spell the sister who lives close to Mom. I remember in high school our family stayed near my grandmother a couple of times so my Mom's sister and her family could take a vacation.

My mother is in an extended care facility just up the street from Dad, my brother is nearby & my sisters are a two hour drive away. I am lucky that my parents are well taken care of, because it would be hard for me to do much from this distance. I am enormously grateful that my Mom & Dad planned ahead and talked with us about their plans as I am hearing some unpleasant stories from other people.

I'm the only one of my four siblings who lives out of state, so the support group is something I can do here that is helpful to me and hopefully to others.
Great game. I think that special is also on in the morning, something like 7 or 8 am but we usually go to 7:30 am Mass on Sundays.

The CBS pre-game had some of the highlights of the longer CBS Sports Network pre-game.
CBS Sports Network is the actual name.
CBS Sports News which is our 418 has a 3-hour pregame. I missed Army March In but saw Navy. They interview old players and current military. Just had a promo for a special tomorrow on the 1963 game.

I searched on cable under football and this came up to my pleasant surprise.

Next up is Gen Martin Dempsey I think
Watching the Brigade of Midshipmen march in for the Army/Navy game today. Very cool.
Thanks for that Tina. I am nothing if not persistent and will definitely get back to Gamache at some stage reasonably soon. Have a lovely Sunday.
Hi Tina- Thanks for the feedback on the Penny audios. Sounds like a good reseaon to re- read by listening!
There's a new Clare Fergusson book? Lucky you! I love that series. Off to put my name on the hold list at the library.

Hi Tina, will Mr Tutu's book be out in Kindle book format, hard copy, or both?

Very exciting news for you guys. Good luck with it!!
I hope she can answer that question! If I see her around town (I'm not sure she stays in Eastport in the winter?) I am going to ask her too!
You were right about the discrepancy. In my hardcover edition, on p.150, it refers to the chain on Sam, "...and especially not with that anchor still chained to his leg." Then on p.187, Chip and Carolyn drag Sam down the deck and haul him around so he hangs over the transom feet first, no mention of chain or anchor. On p. 196, Randy, the killer, gets Sam into the smaller boat by dumping his limp body over the transom, no mention of chain or anchor. Good catch, I missed that first time around. But how it's going to bug me too!! LOL
I will look that up for you tonight after I get home from work. Be careful out there...this cold is no joke!!
Actually, I have read it...just haven't cataloged it yet cause I read it before I started LT. lol. But thanks for thinking of me and the spoiler. If you don't get to Rockland and want me to look it up, let me know.
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worktable on left may go and TV in corner is now gone.
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wrap around bookshelves are also adjustable.
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Pocket door slides behind printer. The bookshelf next to doorway has cookbooks, maps, field guides, and current fiction (on top) since kitchen is just outside that pocket door.
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Front wall of the library. Thinking about moving out the piano and filling in the center wall with shelves. Also will move out center desk and move in reading chair.
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The library from the entrance foyer.
I would love to see pictures of your library :)
I thought it was yours, I don't remember buying it, and it was on the shelf with all the others you loaned me, and I tagged them all at the same time. It's an ARD and if you don't want it, I'll keep it, uit was a really good book. FYI - Kate Morton, not Morgan, could that be the reason you don't see it?
I got it on the second try, Yeah!
Will try to get to the PO tomorrow to mail the first. 04858?
Hello my sister,
Are you busy reading or cooking something scrumptious?

I was just working on the BOMBS total for the month and thought I'd stop by and see if you had read any that you could think of right off the top of your smart little head. I know you have been concentrating on ARCs, so no big deal, just thought I'd ask.


Hi Tina- No problem! It's just an image I snagged off the internet. Hey, we help each other out on LT!

The ♫ is from a character map, I think Wingdings something or other. Just copy and paste.

Star too.

drat Tina, of all the YA books I've read, I haven't read Protecting Marie as yet. I'll try to read it in the next few weeks and then give you my impressions.

All the best!

Hi Tina--

Just noticed your rating of The Guns of August. It's one of my all-time favorite books but it's been several years since I read it. I think I'll dig it out for a summer read this year. I've loved every Tuchman book I've read.

Hi Tina- We just have a curb-side mailbox .I just have to go down and check it. I wish my route was curb-side, instead of all walking. Enjoy your day!

Thanks Tina! Just let me know. Enjoy your weekend!

I'm beginning to think that I'm the only person on LT who didn't enjoy [The Night Circus]! But it's happened before: I am less than thrilled with the Louise Penny books and haven't even dared mention it until now since she has so many ultra-enthusiastic fans on this site! Oh well, different strokes ...

I'm going on a vacation soon and my daughter is lending me her Kindle so I don't have to lug books. ( I'm holding out until my library gets more e-books.) I did buy [11/22/63] and it is huge and heavy so the perfect book for an e-reader. If you succumb, I feel sure you'll enjoy it.

Hi, Tina. I've been shamefully neglecting my thead; just updating now...I don't see a thread for you on the 75'ers. If you have one would you point me toward it?

Yes, but how to transfer?
Hi Tina--

I hope to "see" you in 2012. I think that this will get you to my new thread!

Unfortunately it doesn't see to become a link here--it is a link on my old thread.

Hi Tina- You definitely should read Ishmael. I remember being very moved by this book. And now I have you to thank because as I was rereading some of the discussion on this book I learned that there is a companion book, My Ishmael, which I have not read. So, thanks!! Enjoy the weekend.
Okay...I'll do my best, but I'm a "what would *this* do to a steak?" kind of cook and don't measure anything except by eye.

Defrost liver in 1.5C balsamic vinegar, 1/4C Worcestershire, and ~3T cracked peppercorns. Turn liver after an hour.

Fry equal amount of bacon by weight as there is liver. DO NOT SKIMP. The bacon fat is going to cook onions and liver, so there needs to be a lot of it. I make the bacon really crispy for this preparation because it's going to be crumbled into the onions.

Quarter one medium yellow onion per person. Separate into layers, leaving the center bud whole. Saute on medium-low heat in bacon fat until translucent, then remove to the bowl with crumbled bacon in it. Toss with a short shake of balsamic, cover, let stand until dinner's ready.

Remove liver from marinade and cut into desired serving size. I usually get three portions per beef liver and two from calves' liver. Don't try to get the peppercorns off. Reserve marinade, and scrape blood and marinade off cutting board back into reserved marinade. (I am one cheap bastard. I try not to let one scintilla of flavor escape me!)

Bread liver servings per your preference. I use Wondra, 1T of salt, 1t of fine-ground black pepper. Reserve unused breading.

Place liver portions in the hot bacon fat. Cover, turn after ~5min, cover and cook for ~7min. (Adjust time for desired doneness and thickness of portions. This is for barely-pink thick beef liver. Thinner = shorter, like duh no poop Sherlock.) Remove to serving platter and cover with crumbled bacon and onion mixture. I cover it all up with the skillet lid at this point to re-heat the bacon a tidge.

Deglaze the skillet over medium-high heat with the marinade, adding a little balsamic to get the brown bits to release from the bottom but not float. Remove from heat, add breading while whisking, and when that's smooth, add ~1C half-and-half NOT cream OR milk. Neither of those work for some weird reason...cream tastes rancid and milk tastes thin and bitter. Whisk whisk whisk until it's thickened, put it back on the medium-high heat for ~1min, turn off the heat but leave it on and call everyone to the table.

Potatoes, sprouts, numminess. Molasses cookies or ginger-snap pie for dessert.
Yes to Victoria Thompson. Thanks. XOX
Thanks, Tina. I'll have to check out that Tom Seaver book. Sounds good. Thanks for thinking of me.
I guess I can try another one sometime from Andrew McMeel, but if they don't have the Kindle option, I probably won't request additional ones. I do like the color pics on Adobe Digital Editions or on the Bluefire app, but I'm much more comfortable reading from the Kindle.
I liked Cucina Povera but not enough to buy it. I've downloaded several cookbooks from NetGalley, but unfortunately, unless they've recently added it, there is no Kindle download option. This means I have to read them on my computer or on my iPhone with Bluefire. Not fun. Did you happen to notice if they've added the Kindle option?
Hello, Tina, Happy Sunday to you!
Fortunately we are so used to heat and humidity after 35 years in sunny Florida that we aren't too bothered by the latest heat wave. We have special tactics developed for dealing with it. Although I nearly passed out after foolishly doing some yardwork from 10 to 11:30 a.m.

The cruise isn't until December; we're touring the Carribean. I don't like to plan a cruise for the hurricane season, so we try to go in winter.

I really appreciate your kind thoughts and the book, although painful in parts ("Be careful what you wish for" gave me pause)has been helpful in many ways, not the least of which is turning my thoughts to poetry, a long-lost love. Many, many thanks for sharing it with me.
Outstanding review of "The Reading Promise", Tina!

Do you want "Strange Relation" back when I'm done?

And how are you? Is the heat driving you insane? We still ahve some relatives in Maine and they were suffering this week.
I think it took them two days to respond. I've read two other baseball galleys from them.
Since I've already read it, no need for one to take up shelf space, thanks but give it to the library. XOXOX
Just an update to let you know I'm still reading "Strange Relation." I'm taking it very slowly because every chapter has something that seems to speak directly to me. I can't tell you how much I appreciate your sending me this book; its a true act of kindness.

LOLOL Let's be sure not to tell her, then, unless and until she turns nasty.
Happy birfdee Miss Tina!!

Thanks, Tina. I'll have to look for that video now.
Hope you had a great Mother's Day!
It was chilly - but we got our lobbies and O-Rings at the wharf tonight :)
Tutu: I read your review of "The Coffins of Little Hope" and I heartily agree. I was very confused and ultimately frustrated with the book. I wanted at least one plot thread to be resolved but instead more and more quirky characters were added to the mix. By the time I reached the end, I was so frustrated that I could only feel relief that it was over.

I heard of this through a NY Times review. Honestly, why do I keep choosing books this way? It almost always ends badly. Much better to stick to recommendations from people I know or from LTers. Anyway, I'm on to the latest Maisie Dobbs book and it's a relief to be in the midst of a good story.

Tina, that's really comical. Last name is Doughty. It probably would go through without it, but it's always better to have a last name on the mailing address.

Thank you again...and don't worry, please, about the timing. No hurry at all.

How very nice of you to offer meeting me in Bath for lunch and mp3 lessons!
We could do that! Or I could go north to your neck of the woods... or somewhere in the middle.
Would be fun to meet you. Any good bookstores up there I don't know about?

Bascially, I'm trying to decide if I want the mp3 player or an iPod or neither.
You'd think I was buying a house!
I'd like to try audio books and podcasts (as well as music) on a portable device.
Might encourage me to do more walking... which I desparately need.

Do you really want to do this?
Excellent review, Tina, of the Cleopatra book. I was on the fence about it, even though I admire Schiff tremendously. It's going on the list.
Tina--So glad you enjoyed your Christmas Gift!! Best wishes for many more great reads this year.

Evan is indeed a corgi -- I got hooked on them right out of college, he is my fourth...... a total and complete teddy bear. My brother took that amazing autumnal photo in the woods on a visit here from Australia. I so love that photo!
Thank you Tina -- I'm going to wishlist those two, first Elephant then Blindness....... I truly appreciate you taking the time, it can make a big difference to start with the 'right' book. Lucy/sib
LOL, Tina. I actually went back and read that first chapter again, and it made a little more sense. The backhistory of the Maori and Moriori people was quite interesting, but I still feel cheated with that "rude" drop-off ending! ~Donna~
Hi There Tina

Congratulations on yet another hot review for you.
Hi Tina, a thumb from me for your review of Jacob de Zoet. I loved it when I read it last year. Great idea to listen to at least part of it for the pronunciation aspect. I'm afraid the 'voice in my head' did a poor job of it. Good thing that I was the only one listening!

I'm currently reading Cloud Atlas. This will be the third Mitchell book I've read. I think that's enough to be able to declare him a fantastic author.

Hello Tina - thanks for the note. I hope there is a DC/Maryland meetup scheduled because I would love to meet everybody!
I see you have Home Fires by Katz. Did you read this and did it make an impression on you ?
I have Forgotten Garden - on your find don't buy list.
Tina: How very kind of you to take the time to tell me about visual aids from the library. I can use all the help I can get!

The Kindle made it possible for me to read 66 books last year, but I get so darn angry sometimes. Just a few minutes ago I found a Young Adult trilogy about the Irish potato famine and the emigration to America. Problem is, Book 1 isn't available for the Kindle, while 2 and 3 are.

Just complaining, don't mind me. Thanks again for thinking about me.

Charlie (BrainFlakes)
I absolutely loved The President's Team. The focus is really on the 1963 Navy team but they talked about the Navy choir singing the two songs during the funeral procession, mentioning that several football players were also in the choir.

The author unearthed some amazing facts, such as the postponed Army/Navy game saw the introduction of TV instant replay (viewers were baffled because it came without much warning).

I bet your husband knows these guys. In the back of the book, the author does a "where are they now" for each member of the 1963 Navy football team (41 of the 44 players, I think), talking about their military and post-military careers. Three died while serving in the military and five rose to become admirals.
Thanks Tina.
Tina! So you are Tututhefirst! (I had to ask Mark who you were...because I did not know your real name, LOL). It is so nice to find out who you are even though we have been sharing comments for quite a while. Thank you SOOOO much for the wonderful Christmas books! They were both at the top of my wish list and I can't wait to start reading them. I hope you are having a great holiday season and that you have a happy, healthy 2011 in store. Happy New Year! See you soon on the threads. ;) Kim(berly)
Hi Tina

I hope you are having a relaxing holiday with plenty of reading. I purchased Last Lessons of Summer for a mere 33 cents from my local library sale table. I read your excellent review and plan to read the book tonight. I am ever so glad you are a part of the 75 challenge group.

Hugs to you
I simply want to say you take my breathe away with your kind, sensitive comments. You are indeed a treasure and I am blessed by you.

I hope your day is as wonderful as you are. Merry Christmas my friend!
Tina, I loved all of the books on your "best" list, so I'll have to try the two I haven't read yet. B.
Thanks Tina- Hopefully Berly checks in with us soon! Have a good day!

Tina- How are you? I just thought I would let you know, we started a thread for the "Christmas Book Swap":
Stop by! Did you get your gift out?

I grew up in Limerick (nearest metropolis-Sanford), and the little one-room library, complete with wood stove, and no bathroom, was open four hours a week, two on Weds afternoons and two on Sat morning. Mrs. Anderson kept a notebook filled with who had what checked out. There was no card catalog, you just asked her. Since I've moved away, the library has moved to an old schoolhouse with more room, heat, and Internet. Whoo-hoo! As much as I love some of the grand libraries I've used since then, and of course all the impersonal cookie-cutter ones, I still miss the musty dark corners of that little room...

sure. My thread is 'ffortsa's 75 for 2010' in the 75 books in 2010 group.
Hi Tina,

Thank you for adding me to your interesting libraries. I would like to add you to my interesting houses! How I would love to have a library, never mind a library annex! I grew up in Limerick, Maine and definitely now own more books than our little one-room library of the time had. I loved it though, which I'm sure helped influence me to become a librarian.

I was writing on Mark's (msf59) thread the other day about snow, and what do you know? It began snowing today, and we are supposed to get 1-3 inches tomorrow--in Seattle!! The times they are a-changing, and the climate even faster.

Have a great Thanksgiving, and happy reading,
Congrats on the Hot Review!
Thank you. I truly appreciate that.

- Joseph.
Tina- Did you find all the info, you needed on the Book Swap? Don't be shy, let your voice be heard! Hope you had a good day!

Yeah, she's a real fine example of what mothering should be. I thought that was about the best thing I'd seen in a long time on the subject of what to do as a parent...wish she'd write an advice column! But then again, the people who most need her advice aren't likely to look for it, still less take it, are they?

Tina- Thanks for the info. It's great to have you along! Watch my thread for details and have a great weekend!
Tina, may I have your recipe for delicata squash?


Hi Tina, Just popping in to say mom is enjoying At Home in Mitford and is amazed by the similaries to Dorsetville. Thanks for the recommendation - the series will surely keep her busy for awhile. Have a great weekend
Hi Tina- Sorry I meant to reply to you! I was thinking of running a voting ticker, over on my 75 Book Challenge,to see how many people would like to participate. I'm sure it'll work. I've been wanting to read it also. Thanks for the interest and I'll be in touch!

Tina, just read your review of Bad Day for Pretty. I'm about half way through it and was thinking that I liked the first book better. Glad that you thought it worked as a stand-alone. Hope to finish it up tonight and post my own comments.

Hello there,
I'm responding to the comment you left on my Blog ( I don't know how to answer..from there) regarding THE VANISHING OF KATHARINA LINDEN... I am not sure if it's being marketed as YA...but it certainly outright, gratuitous violence..Actually, it's a pretty "thoughtful" book/ hindsight and all

hope this helps

have a grand weekend
Thank You all around!
Fantasy Skeptics, Unite!!

besides, we have 83 books-in-common

Wanna be my Friend? *sacastic DUH*

serious request
We hope to head to Maine mid October. The beginning of the semester is always difficult for me to get away. We haven't been to Maine in two-three years and I miss it. Last year we vacationed in Yellowstone and that was spectacular. We have an aunt who lives in St. Petersburg, Florida and is not well so we visited her three times this past year. In April we went to Disneyworld. All of these are good experiences, but not as relaxing as Maine.

As mentioned, I fantasize about retiring there. Do you mind the winters?

Do you get those nasty, nasty black flies that bite. Mosquitoes? lots of them?

How far are you from Portland?
Oh Tina, I did not know you had kidney surgery! Thanks for letting me know. I'm every so glad that you are doing well.

BIG hugs to you! Have is Maine weather this summer? We hope to go to Moosehead Lake in October. We have never been there and Will is anxious to visit.
Oops, I pit the wrong kind of brackets. Thanks.
Hello Tina,
thank you for the compliment of adding mine as a interesting library! I've just been having a little look at yours and see you have made extensive use of the collections feature. I haven't really got started on that properly, but I have just decided to put all my theology/church books into a separate collection. You've got a lot of Merton in your religion collection - he's someone I keep meaning to read properly but so far I haven't managed any. Which is your favourite? (Or are those Bob's?) And I see you've just added Tulip Fever - I hope you enjoy it better than I did!
Re: Beans of Egypt, ME, I've heard of this book but only knew enough to know that "beans" refers to a family, not a food plant. Looking at the reviews, it looks very much like the MO books we've read, at least in terms of the moral standards and behavoir of the characters. I'm curious, though, about your comment about original settlers vs incomers - Is that a theme in the book, or does that describe the different reactions to it? More important, though, is it a good book? :-)
I don't know whether reading the first book will make a difference. I'm just a little anal about not reading a sequel until after I've read what came first. While there is no innate shame in being uneducated or poverty-stricken, I'm a little concerned that you did not promise to assume that we Missourians aren't all drug-using child abusers either! Just kidding, of course. One of the discussion points we had, when talking about the stereotypical representation of rural Missourians, was whether having such flawed and distasteful characters makes for better fiction. As you can imagine, there were lots of interesting comments.

I'm sure I won't get to "Pretty" before July, either, but I'm hopeful that it will be humorous spin on a nasty subject. Kind of like that old Dixie Chicks song about Earl.
Tina, I just noticed that you added A Bad Day for Pretty. I got this as an ER book - you, too? As soon as I received the notfication, I went to the library and got the first book, A Bad Day for Sorry. Not sure what to expect - I notice that it is set in Missouri. In the MO Readers group, our experience as been that our state is rarely portrayed very favorably. One could get the impression that we are an entire state of uneducated, poverty-stricken drug-using child abusers. Only, I think that these books might show us to be wife-beaters, also! Looking forward to your comments.

Thanks for your very kind comments. I'd be happy to answer any questions about narrating books that you might have. I notice that we have similar tastes in books!
Oops, only one n in Diana Wynne Jones' first name.
Okay, in addition to the series I mentioned, which were the Charlie Bone books by Jenny Nimmo and the Keys to the Kingdom books by Garth Nix, if she liked Harry Potter, she should love Angie Sage's Septimus Heap books starting with Magyk. Also Diane Duane's So You Want to be a Wizard series and almost anything by Dianna Wynne Jones. I loved Dogsbody at that age, but Charmed Life, the first of the Chrestomanci series, is another good place to start. Flora Segunda and Flora's Dare by Ysabeau Wilce. Patricia Wrede's Enchanted Forest Chronicles. Dragon Slippers and its sequels by Jessica Day George. Igraine the Brave by Cornelia Funke, and then on to her Inkheart trilogy. The Sisters Grimm series by Michael Buckley. Susan Cooper's The Dark is Rising series.

For most of these, you can put the author's name in Wikipedia, and an article comes up that will have a basic synopsis and then the books in the series in order. Hope this helps. There are lots and lots of series out there now, but these are my favorites.
You simply would not believe the number of similarities in our lives. Amazing.
What a powerful review that you did for On Hallowed Ground. I have a personal fondness for reviews which entwine the reader's life with the book that spoke to them. Lovely, lovely review.
That's OK - just thought I'd ask. Lurk to your heart's content!

Hi Tina

I noticed that you added "When the Mississippi Ran Backwards" to your wishlist. Do you think you'll be able to get it read in time to join the discussion in the MO Readers group? June 15 - plenty of time. Love to have you.

Also, glancing up at your currently reading list, "Food of a Younger Land" sounds interesting - I'll be watching for your comments.

I always enjoy seeing what you've been reading - tons of good stuff.

Thank you very much!
Re the Mobile Library series, I love cozies and Ireland books, too. I don't even mind books where nothing much happens (such as the latest Joanne Fluke book) when I like the characters. That wasn't true here.

I have too many good books to read to waste time on ones that aren't. I felt bad because it was an ER book but I feel I gave it a fair shot.
Thank you for your excellent review of War Torn.
Congratulations on your hot review Tina!

It is snowing here in NE PA and very cold. How is the weather in Maine?
Awesome Tina. Enjoy!!!
Just wanted to stop by and congratulate and thank you for your great, heartfelt review of War Torn. I've had the book on my shelves for ages and have yet to get to it. I now know to move it high up the TBR list!

Tina, just a quick note to thank you again for the info on LeechBlock. It looks exactly like what I'm wanting. But it is as you thought, only for FireFox, which I do not have. I searched for a similar product for IE, but didn't locate one. I think I would like to switch to FF, but am having issues with my computer which will not let me download most software - I can't even update IE (I'm still on 6.0!) Before anything else, I need to get it in someplace for a "tuneup" and thorough updating. Then I'll load FF, and then LeechBlock, and then (hopefully) I'll be able to stay on task during working hours!


Hi Tina! There is a group dedicated to putting the pressure on you to clear off the shelves of books you already own called "Books off the Shelves", and it's over here:

My goal is 25 books off the shelves, and 75 new books read and reviewed next year.

I understand how that works. This is the time when the house is quiet. I've often stayed up this late working (as in working for money) because it's so easy to concentrate without interruptions. Hope you get enough sleep to be alert at work tomorrow! I need to take my son to school at 6 in the morning, so I really need to get some sleep - I have to go to work tomorrow, too.
Hi, Tina. Just saw your comment on Linda's thread about being up so late. It's only midnight for her and me, but what are YOU doing still up? Sandy
Hey, Tina! My thread is too long too, so I'm trying to stall for the same reason. Plus, I'm switching to the 75-book challenge. Hope we both make it! :-)
Hi, Tina! My computer keeps stalling out when trying to open your thread, so thought I'd come over here to tell you that the book Toast sounds yummy!
Yep. I'm definitely going to set up a group for next year. I think the consensus was to keep it a challenge group, but run it like we did this year, ie pretty low key on the challenge part. I'm going to try to be more diligent with putting links to the group reads and auxiliary threads in the group description, but other than that, I think things will be much like last year. I hope you'll stick with us. Your thread was a fun one to follow!

So how did a B'morean wind up in Maine? 8^}

Thanks so much for your comments and tips, as well as becoming a follower - I appreciate it!

I will definitely do what you suggested.

~ Alanna

Hello - thanks for letting me know about the broken link on Blogger Giveaways - I actually found two and fixed them both : D
Thanks for setting me straight on King Tut - glad to know I still have a few functioning brain cells left! I've never read James Patterson before, and have intentionally avoided him lately for the exact reason you just gave. Actually, it was because I thought you had chosen this book that I decided to give it a go. That, and the fact that this one is a nonfiction. I think the co-author is credited on this book - is that the case with his novels?

The Kennedy is also added just to the wishlist, but I'm pretty unsure about it. It made the list in the wake of the unexpected positive reaction I had to the Bob Dole memoir I recently finished. Usually, I avoid political figures like the plague and (truth be told) I'll be surprised if I actually read "True Compass". The Dole book was just for the Kansas category in my 999 challenge, and it is really more of a war hero's story than a politican's story.

I visit your threads every day, if there is a new message posted. I'm surprised that I've managed to keep my mouth shut so long that you didn't even notice me! I remember that you posted on the 1010 challenge that you weren't going to participate, but would just post in the 75 books group instead. I don't remember you saying anything that I would have called a "rant" - did you get any unfriendly comments back? Or maybe you were just feeling frustrated? Actually, I'm not as excited either about the 1010 challenge as I was last year for the 999. Not sure if it is because last year was the first time I'd done a challenge or what. That is a big part of the reason I chose to do the "step" challenge - only 55 books. Now I'll have plenty of time to read whatever else I feel like reading.

As far as the Agatha Raisin books go, I don't like them quite as well as Hamish MacBeth. But I started the series when it was brand new and can't seem to help myself from getting each new book as it comes out. Luckily, they are short and easy to read in a single sitting - just like HM. The first few (5 or 6) were the best - I loved them, and it was because of AR that I started picking up HM books. So, my advice is to start at the beginning and read them in order. Quit when you lose interest. So far, there haven't been any surprises that I would have regretted missing in any of the later books - she just isn't aging as gracefully as Hamish.

Enjoy your late night up reading - it's below normal temps here, too, but not as cold as you've got. Sitting by the fire sounds cozy. The book I'm reading right now is going very slowly - it seems like I've been reading it for weeks and I'm still only half finished. I'd quit here, but it's an ER book so I'm committed. The thing is, I don't hate it - it's just going so slow! Me, I stayed up late last night and can barely keep my eyes open. I'm off to bed.

Nice chatting with you.
Hi, Tina

Haven't "seen" much of you since you got back from the cruise - you are one busy lady! Say, didn't you add a book the other day (maybe last week?) called "King Tut"? When I was browsing the new books list on the library's catalog the other day, I found the book by James Patterson (never read him before) and was sure I recognized it as being on your recent activity list. I thought it looked pretty interesting, so I added it to my wishlist. But when I opened the works page and expected to see your name, you weren't there! Please tell me that you added it, and then changed your mind and deleted it. The alternative is that my memory is not to be trusted!

So, why did you change your mind about the King Tut book? ;-)

Thanks, I'm glad to have my first follower! :) I guess I do skip the glitz -- my reviews are more like my own booknotes on what I've read so that I can look back when I think of a certain topic or author or quote, etc. I've been busy adding books to LT but as always it seems I have so many books, so little time!

Thanks for adding BannedBooksLibrary to your Interesting Libraries. Happy Reading!
Oh Tina
You paint such a wonderful picture. We did not visit Maine this summer, instead we went to Yellowstone National Park.

I still have a dream of retiring in Maine, but with my husband's asthma and breathing difficulties in winter cold, I don't think it can be a reality.

Therefore, I enjoy your descriptions all the more!

Congrats on your hot review!
Hi Tina

How is the weather in beautiful Maine?
Tina, I look at those every day! You'll be able to see that I did add The Unlikely Disciple to my wishlist, which means that I probably won't read it anytime soon - but I'll get to it eventually unless the reviews here start looking unfavorable (and especially if your review is bad). I went ahead and ordered the Deborah Madison book from the library, so I'll enter it when it gets here in a couple of days. I also ordered another of hers about vegetarian cooking (my 16-year old son is vegetarian, and my 54-year old husband is a carnivore. Mealtimes here aren't as fun and easy as they used to be!) If they are good, I'll find copies to buy.

Thanks for the links to the reviews!

Hi, Tina

I just noticed that you've added "The Unlikely Disciple" to your library. The title caught my eye, and I'm trying to decide if the book looks interesting enough to try to find it. Is this just on your wishlist, or have you actually gotten the book? What drew you to this book?

And now that I'm here on your profile page, I see another new book you've added about farmer's market foods that I'm going to take a look at, too. I think I need to go back "home" before I find anymore goodies here!

I was reading your review of 'The Rapture' by Liz Jensen and thought it was really well done, but I did notice that you called the main character 'Brittany' and I think her name was Bethany. I'm not 100% sure, since it's been a couple of weeks since I read the book, but I think that was her name.
No problem, Tina. I thought you might be interested, due to your upcoming cruise. Have fun!!

Except for 999 and also maybe the presidential challenge, I am not exactly throwing myself into any of these.

I don't use the PDA anymore since I got the Kindle, But the PDA was a Palm OS. I liked it, but I like the Kindle better, you can adjust the font for easier reading.

I've managed not to go broke though, I have downloaded a lot of classics (which are free) as well as beta books which are cheap. You have to be vigilant about seeking them out.

I think you'll like "Roasting in Hell's Kitchen", it's very interesting.

Thanks for the message :)


Congratulations! You have won a prize in the Book Read: Mistress of the Art of Death from Early Summer 2009, The Highly Rated Book Group.

To see what you have won, check this link:

And follow these instructions:

1) Write a note to Vintage Books with your
- real name
- address
- email address
- AND the prize you won.

That's it! Sit back and enjoy your fame and fortune. Congratulations!

Did you ever get [Blood Bayou]? I won it, but never received it.
Tina, the Elton John/Billy Joel concert at Wrigley Field was fabulous (particularly whenever Billy Joel sang, as far as I'm concerned). About 3 hrs, 20 minutes, nonstop, at Wrigley Field. A few songs together, a mini-concert by EJ, a mini-concert by BJ, and then a few more songs together.

This was the third time I've seen them. I saw them at Milwaukee's County Stadium in 2004 and then, this past May, in St Louis. The St Louis show was identical. except for two additional Beatles songs, right before the final two, which were done in StL. They couldn't do these at Wrigley due to the curfew, I think. (Oddly enough, the Wrigley tickets were about half the price of those in StL)

Elton also did a quick Take Me Out to the Ballgame. Billy also did a My Kind of Town, Chicago Is (or maybe Chicago, Chicago, That Toddlin' Town).

Also memorable was that fact that, when walking to her seat with a tray of mai tai's, the woman behind me spilled one all over me. Very apologetic and totally accidentally. She was still fussing after the show, offering to pay for my shirt.

Thanks, Tina. I like cultural food books and have added America Eats and Food of a Younger Land to my TBR list. I enjoyed the Hard Tack to Home Fries book on your list.

As I look at my food-tagged might enjoy Jakle's Fast Food: Roadside Restaurants in the Automobile Age as well as Carolyn Wyman's Better Than Homemade: Amazing Food that Changed the Way We Eat.

If I had a half category, food would be on it. I wouldn't mind reading 4 or 5 food books in a year but 9 or 10 is probably too many for me so I will just count them as general nonfiction.
I'm just going to continue on. I have several partialy finished categories, One or two new ones to start (Gardening books, for example) and a few of my current ones need to be split as they continue to grow. (Biography needs Autobiography and memoirs split off. Austrian cookbooks could to be split off from the Austria category.) I could split books read in German off from various categories as they overfill.

I figure I'll have a second set of nine categories finished about the end of October, but three sets is probably pushing it too far. (Unless I use overlaps.)
A dumb waiter that goes up to the attic? A library annex? Wow...for the first time I'm a tiny bit envious of someone else's library set-up!

I'd like to ask you to participate in my Scene of the Blog feature, but it will be a few months before I can start asking the next round of bloggers to join in. I never dreamed it would be so popular when I started it, but the feature has become so much fun!
Thanks. All fifty states are in.

I will also post a personal thread and move the full state list up to the top. Not to mention send out invitations to people who seemed interested.
Well, for my 999 x 2 challenge, I changed one of the categories to 50 States Fiction and started tossing in some suggestions.

I certainly can't do 50 states in one year but maybe 10 per year...
Wow--a cruise!! Enjoy. Your evening sounds wonderful, too. I'm heading off for dinner with friends and then a local community/professional theater performance of 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee tonight.

I may unjoin that REading Globally. I am not interested in reading about all 192 countries, though an occasional topical read might be in order (this month is polar regions).

What I would be interested in is a 50 States Fiction Read. I see that LT does have such a group, though it seems rather quiet. Maybe starting at the end with Wyoming and Wisconsin might be just the thing.
Oh, wow! I'm speechless! Thanks so much ~ I can't WAIT to read it!!!
Hi Tina--

I'm just stopping by to let you know I haven't forgotten my "friends"--I've just been swamped and struggling to get reading done so I'm way behind on LT threads and answering comments. I'm planning to try to spend a lot of time in June on my reading and on LT because my husband retries on July 2nd and heaven only knows what I'll be able to do then! :-)

This week I hope to catch up on all the threads--and still have some time to read Mistress of the Art of Death and Battle Cry of Freedom, my two "main" reads right now. I don't think it will take me 4 weeks to finish Mistress, even with the slow start I've gotten. This week looks like I'll get lots of time to read.

I see you on your thread today and check out what you''ve been reading.

lol, you're a reading maine-iac! I'm open to dates, a couple others prefer June/July. Come on over to this thread and we'll see what evolves.
Hi Tina

Thanks for the suggestion. Unfortunately our library system doesn't have a copy of Our Lady of the Artichokes but I have put it on my wish list. It sounds like it would be good. I'm way behind on my challenges right now because of very busy work during April and May so I'm looking forward to more reading time in the summer.

Looking forward to starting Mistress tomorrow! Luckily I have a book I want to finish tonight--Franny & Zooey--so I will not "cheat" and jump the gun! :-)

Dear tututhefirst

Thank you for your WONDERFUL review of my upcoming novel WIFE OF THE GODS. You had some amazing words of praise and I'm sincerely grateful. I'm thrilled at what you got out of it. Do my eyes deceive me that you nominated WOTG as one of the best of the year? Unbelievable. Thank you so much. I don't take your words for granted in the least. Thank goodness for book-lovers like you!

All my best

Kwei Quartey
Thanks so much; yours is a lovely reminder of home, and I'll be adding it to my RSS feed once I have a chance to set it up :)
Hola tututhefirst

It's totally cool. If one reads that fast or that much, than one should go for it (the second 999) for all of us who don't or can't. I do applaud those doing a second 999. I had seen cyderry's 999 x 2 and thought she had completed her first 999.

I think the finish thread will be interesting to watch come August through the end of the year and beyond. It'll be neat to see how much people actually complete the challenge.

Thanks for the encouragement on the reading! I started counting my books from when the challenge group opened and I know I won't finish by the end of Dec. But I will finish it. I read about 30 books in 2008. I'm on book #24 for my 999 (of 13 books in 2009). I'm on a slightly better pace, which equals more reading which equals goodness. This is my first reading challenge ever and I'm enjoying it very much.
I am still think about the setting up a presidential discussion group. We will see. I want to think it out a little more. There is so much that I want to include and fear that it may become unmanageable.

The challenges are not something that I am too keen on either. Reading should not be rushed and challenges may "encourage" some to rush or read books based on thickness.

I had to read your profile. My house sounds similar to yours. I have a designated office/library (without the 9 ft ceiling and built in bookshelves), but I ran out of room in there and have books scattered in just about every room.

I love reading about military history, US history, ancient history, and political science. Most of the 2,500 books I have are on those subjects. I have a few fiction books and they are mainly the classics. Eventually, I will list every book that I have on here.

I was in the US Navy but opted against making a career out of it. If I had, I would be in my 24th year now. Since I have been out, I keep wondering if I should have stayed in.

I think that you and your husband would both really like "The Rise and Fall of Great Powers" by Paul Kennedy. You can read that book from so many different perspectives....military history, world history, economic history, or political history. I first read it in college for a political science course. About a year later, it was also required for a history course.

Currently, I am reading Douglas S. Freeman's 7 volume biography on Washington. That will take a few weeks to get through!

I am thinking about continuing the Presidential challenge. I just will not do it through that group. I have been thinking about adding the ticker to my profile and listing the books that I read. In the next few days, I will do that.

I have also toyed with the idea of setting up a group where readers are free to ask questions and discuss the presidential biographies that they are reading or have read. I have other ideas for it if I decide to do it. I just do not really want a competing group with the challenge. I would rather have an extension group that gives the readers a place for discussion if they wish.

One cannot learn what they want from reading one biography without a discussion. One book does not cover that much information.

I have read quite a few presidential biographies over the last 30-some years and have a couple hundred books (and growing) on the presidents. It is a hobby of mine and has been since grade school. That is what got me to the group. The lack of discussion is why I chose to leave.
Hi Tina,
Hope you are liking One Man's Meat... I'm Angie from .. aka Suedonym on Library Thing. Nice to 'meet' you!
Hi Tina - It's always nice to have a new friend, especially one so close to home - thanks for the invitation! I used to read constantly but for some years I've been starting lots of books without actually finishing them. I'm hoping that the mild structure of a challenge and the friendly discussions I've seen on 75 books will keep me on track a bit better than I've managed to do on my own. My photo is MooShu Cat, and I think he must be partly Maine Coon, but not completely since he's so tiny and they're usually big cats, aren't they?

I go twice a year to Monhegan Island - generally over Memorial Day weekend and again the last weekend in September, with a group of birdwatching friends who gather from points far & near. We always used to take the Port Clyde boat, but have taken the Hardy Boat more often since they've extended their season enough to make it possible. New Harbor is a little bit closer, but I do miss the mailboat appeal of the Laura B. I also try to go out in the summer with my boys, but that trip doesn't happen quite so routinely. Perhaps someday we can have a LibraryThing meet-up in Port Clyde!

I grew up in the Navy, and lived quite a while in Northern Virginia and in Washington. I now live in a small town in New Hampshire & work in a library (though not a public one). We seem to have a fair amount in common even aside from our books :-) One thing we don't yet have in common is retirement - lucky you! Do you drive when you go to Virginia or do you fly?
Where is South Thomaston, Maine. My husband and I fell in love with Maine after vacationing in Princeton a few years ago. We dream of retiring there, but are a bit daunted about cold winters as my husband has asthma.

Princeton is very close to Canada. Real estate prices are incredibly low.

Bethlehem, PA
Yep! That's exactly what it is .. an Indian wedding cake. (No wonder it reminds you of Penang) No one ever figures out what it is. I hope it will be the design of my wedding cake when I get married in May 2009. I love your pic. I'm still gaping at it! I hope to have a library in the near future.

I was really thrilled to get Bestseller! It was the one book I truly wanted and I could hardly believe I was so lucky. I can't wait to read it and I look forward to what we have to say about it.
Great Christmas present from LTER! Happy Holidays!
Hi, Tina

I finally have a few days to breathe--we are in Chicago visiting our son and his family for Thanksgiving and today the parents are at work and the 1st grader is at school so we are home with the three year old who is being very well entertained by his uncle and Grandad (my other son and husband). I'm taking this opportunity to spent some time on LT just visiting people I've seen on the threads.

I enjoyed your library--we have some similar tastes and share 121 books. I notice you just added The Complete Polysyllabic Spree--I have that on my 999 challenge but haven't decided yet if I should buy it or get it from the library. We live in California so have a somewhat better situation than you have--our local branch is about the same size as your town library, but we can go on the web and request books from the ValleyCat which lists all the books in every public library in the Central Valley of California--which covers many counties. Since I joined LT I discovered I had to learn to depend on the library because I was buying too many books--LT was like a candy store catalog and I couldn't resit. I still buy books--but now I want to be sure they are ones I will want to reread someday. Money is a factor, but the biggest problem is SPACE!

One area I'm adding to in our library is "history"--I have a 999 category on the Civil War and I'm reading some history books in my Africa category. This is an area I've sort of neglected since I left school. Not completely--but it hasn't been a priority. I've read some this year and enjoyed it

I'll be following your 999 challenge next year--I hope you make comments about what you read. I love adding to my TBR! Do you do the 75 challenge? We have a lot of fun discussing there.
Hi Tina,

First of all, let me say I am in awe of your library -- both on LT and in RL. I have a more intimate setting for my library (translation: quite small). It's a cozy paneled room with built-in shelves, but I can only have approximately 400 of my most "important" books in there, so consequently I have books all over the house. My husband knows when I am in my sanctuary that I am not to be disturbed! There is only one chair in there for a reason. :-) But, back to your library. I love the brightness and openness you have and the fact that you have created a sense of warmness and comfort with your family pictures and momentos. And, to live in Maine! I am working hard not to be green with envy.

Thank you for the wonderful hint for our son and d-i-l's first anniversary. They had a reading from Gibran's The Prophet and I will look into doing something special with that.

Now, about books...I see you have recently read and enjoyed Walk in the Woods and The Worst Hard Time. I have read and enjoyed both books and was wondering if you could recommend some other nonfiction works. I tend to read way too much fiction and would like to be more balanced in my choices. I am currently reading (and liking) Krakauer's Under the Banner of Heaven in conjunction with The 19th Wife. They are both about fundamental Mormons and polygamy. It is interesting to see the parallels between the NF and the fiction view.

Keep in touch and Happy Reading in your lovely library. ~Donna~
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