What Are You Reading The Week of Oct 29, 2011?
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First time for me...starting a new thread...here goes:
Authors born this week:
Dominick Dunne (1925)
Jean Giraudoux (1882)
Ezra Pound (1885)
John Keats (1795)
Stephen Crane (1871)
Gordon R. Dickson (1923)
Lois McMaster Bujold (1949)
Martin Flavin (1883)
William Cullen Bryant (1794)
Martin Cruz Smith (1942)
Gail E. Haley (1939)
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Thank you for starting this thread and great job on the birthdays! Since it is Halloween on Monday, I just started reading The Hungry Goblin by John Dickson Carr One of my favorite authors. 1869 London and Part II is titled 'Hallowe'en at Udolpho' so there is the link to the holiday. Foggy here in Portland OR with the leaves on the trees showing off there beautiful fall colors. Got my cup of tea and my cat. Life is good!
Thanks for starting the new thread, fuzzi! It is bright and sunny in Indiana, which makes reading The monkey wrench gang, which is set in the Southwest desert, a little more plausible. I've started it before and couldn't get into it, but this time I'm really enjoying it. Also reading Gay Talese's Fame and obscurity, a collection of magazine pieces from the 1960s.
Good news from Italy, folks. I've been paying my respect to a certain great author of the past for about two weeks - more or less. Now I'm about to finish The Pickwick Papers - yeah, it's awesome.
Three more chapters to go.
Cheers from an amused Dickens' fan.
Yesterday I finished The Witness of Combines by Kent Meyers, which was so, so wonderful, and will likely be one my favorite books of the year. My copy is now stuffed with little bits of paper marking passages that I found particularly beautiful or interesting or moving, and that I want to read again and share with family, friends, and unsuspecting bystanders.
My current read is a children's book I've been meaning to read for awhile: Cornelia and the Audacious Escapades of the Somerset Sisters by Lesley M. M. Blume. I'm listening to The Brandons by Angela Thirkell on audio, and finding it delightful, and reading And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie aloud.
Fuzzi, you've done an excellent job! That must have been a lot of work. Thank you!
I'm currently reading Quoth the Raven by Jane Haddam, a nice, cozy Hallween read for the season. I should finish it up today. (Tomorrow at the latest.) Then I'll be starting The Australian Pen Pal by Michelle Linn-Gust, which I won though the LT member give-away.
Having read Gone With the Wind for the first time this summer, I'm diving into Margaret's Mitchell's Gone With the Wind: A Bestseller's Odyssey from Atlanta to Hollywood by Ellen F. Brown and John Wiley Jr. The lady was so reticent about having anyone see her manuscript, it's a miracle it got published at all!
Nice start, fuzzi - thanks.
Last week I finished World War Z which has been around the house for a while. It was a good book and it's sticking with me, just not the fright fest I was hoping for.
My paperback edition of The Shadows in the Street was finally delivered last week so I think I'm going to be starting it. It's the 5th book in Susan Hill's excellent Simon Serrailler series.
I had to apply my "100 page rule" to The Devil Amongst the Lawyers by Sharyn McCrumb. She is my favorite author of Appalachian stories and I was looking forward to this one in which Nora (who has "the sight") appears as a youngster and takes place in Wise, Va., close to my hometown. When I start a book that doesn't grab me right away I will commit to reading 100 pages and then if I am really not into it I move on. I kept sticking with this one and it is better now by page 174 but it will not will be of my favorite McCrumb ballad novels. If you are a McCrumb fan you may want to try other ballad novels before this one. I recommend The Ballad of Frankie Silver or The Rosewood Casket.
Great start, fuzzi! Finally enjoying Midnight's Children having been intimidated enough to put it off for several years.
Thanks for the great start, fuzzi!
I'm about halfway through Knights of the Hill Country. It's okay, nothing earth-shattering. I'm hoping I'll finish it tomorrow night, at the latest.
Good job Fuzzi! Thanks!
I finished the amazing Ready Player One. I've heard it called a "geekgasm", which is perfect. If you were in your teens during the 80s, this is tailor-made for you. I was in my 20s and still loved it.
Finishing up the month in Halloween fashion, I'm well into Feed, another zombie-extravaganza, which is surprisingly very good.
Lastly, I finally cracked open Wonderstruck. It's breath-taking.
I finished Das Labyrinth der Träumenden Bücher a sequel to the lovely City of Dreaming Books. It was not as god as the first but still lovely and surprising. Some parts were a bit too long and could have cut short, but so far it was worth the reading time. I hope now that the second part to this one will come out soon because it ended with a cliffhanger...
#18, Booksloth, Midnight's Children is in my on-deck circle, so I'd be interested in hearing what you think of it. Finished Donna Andrews' very funny Murder with peacocks this morning and not sure which of the books I've got started to go to work on next.
#13> Joyce, Sorry if you've mentioned this elsewhere, but who is the reader for the audio Catch 22 you're listening to?
I am about 2/3 of the way through the third volume of the Memoirs of Carl Schurz. The third volume began with Schurz's description of his experiences at the Battle of Gettysburg as a major general in the Union army and continues through the rest of the war. Where this volume really becomes fascinating is with Schurz's descriptions of the post-war trip he took through the Southern states for President Andrew Johnson. Johnson wanted a first-hand, non-political account of conditions and attitudes in the South as he began formulating his policies for Reconstruction. As I read through Schurz's accounts of what he found during his three month-journey, and then through his recapitulation of the events of the next through years, as congress battled Johnson for control of these policies, was not only riveting, but also made me appalled at my own lack of knowledge the tragic events of these times. I have just come to Schurz's own entry into the Senate. At this point in the writing of the memoirs, unfortunately, Schurz died, and the rest of his life is described in straight biography style by a pair of early 20th-century historians working from Schurz's voluminous journals, published articles and letters.
>28- Rocketjk, the reader of Catch 22 is Jay O. Sanders. I've never heard of him before, but at times he sounds just like Alan Arkin. In reading your post at first I thought you were talking about Charles Shultz of Peanuts fame. Your book sounds depressing and interesting. While reading Half a Yellow Sun I've begun to think the US just should have let the south secede. It would have been the way to go, except for the slavery issue. We couldn't have let that continue.
I finished reading Patrick Leigh Fermor's A Time of Gifts -- such a wonderful book. Young Fermor's travel along the Danube made me think of Alan Furst's book Night Soldiers and I wound up rereading sections of that book, too. My atlas has had a workout as I've followed Fermor's travels across Europe - the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Czechoslovakia (Prague in the snow) -- the book ends as he's poised to set foot into Hungary. I'll read the second book about his journey soon, but for now I think I need to rest my weary feet. Fermor's writing is amazing -- his recreation of that time before WWII -- as we see so much of what was past and what was about to be changed forever -- is breathtaking. An extraordinary achievement.
Next up: Elizabeth Bowen's The Heat of the Day
#32 pirate...Loved Shutter Island!! I read it before the movie and I think it was better (though I usually think that :-) Did not see the ending coming at all.
I started reading Graveyard Book as my Halloween read. I thought i would get it done this weekend, but didn't. I hope to finish it tonight. I also got a good start on Night Circus but put it aside in favor of Gaiman.
I also broke down and purchased Murakami's new one IQ84. I won't get to it for some time, but it will be there sitting on my shelves waiting for me...
Seems to me I heard something about Schurz somewhere this last week, but i can't remember where. So many wonderful characters in the American Civil War. Someone should write a book. :-)
I finished Half a Yellow Sun, a remarkable work using the interrelationships of characters to show the devastating effects of war. Now I've started Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock. Remember that picture of the small African American girl in white integrating the school in Little Rock in 1957 with the white girl behind her screaming and blasting hate at her? Elizabeth is the African American girl, Hazel the white one. It should be good.
4) Where in Italy? I've recommenced my studies in the Italian language. We may visiting for two or three months after the first of the year. I was first in Italy in 1968 when I studied in Perugia at the University for Foreigners.
A John Le Carre novel had escaped me! "A Most Wanted Man." The master hasn't lost his touch.
I've finished and reviewed The Made-Up Man. It's a take on the Don Giovanni story that I haven't seen before.
I'm about 100 pages into The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach. It's good but not great so far.
#26 Just to let you know it's still going well. I've read so many long novels set in India that I was really expecting to have got a bit bored with it by now (about 250 pages in) but it's keeping me coming back. It's my first experience of Rushdie and, for some reason, I'd got it into my head that he would be very difficult to read but that isn't the case at all . It also contains a lot more humour than I'd expected. I'll try and keep you posted.
#46, I read Midnight's Children years ago and found it very difficult to get into, however I kept going with it and eventually enjoyed it enormously. I hope you get through it!
I'm currently reading Espresso Tales, which I have had for ages and it never really appealed to me, but actually I am enjoying the slow pace and short chapters very much! Easy to read in bite sized chunks!
Finished The Museum of Eterna's Novel: The First Good Novel by Macedonio Fernandez. Let's just say it was a memorable experience. I am listening to Cathedral of the Sea and I am about to start reading The Pets by Bragi Olafsson.
I finished The Tiger's Wife by Téa Obreht yesterday, and Kangaroo Notebook by Kōbō Abe on Sunday. I've just started Scenes from Village Life, the new collection of short stories by Israeli author Amos Oz, and I'm still reading The Half-Finished Heaven: The Best Poems of Tomas Tranströmer by this year's Nobel Prize winner, and Hackney, That Rose-Red Empire by Iain Sinclair.
(46) Booksloth, have you read the Raj Quartet? It was made into a BBC series called The Jewel in the Crown, by Paul Scott.
It's not an easy read, but it's fascinating. It also helps if you've seen the BBC series, which was fantastic. Superb casting as usual, and wonderful performances by the actors and actresses.
Oh, I almost forgot: I finished The Baker Street Letters and am now into the second book, The Brothers of Baker Street. The first book was pretty good, worth a read.
I have been busy with school (fiction writing) and work (lawyering), so haven't had much "free" time to read. But I did get in and finish Best Kept Secret: A Novel by Amy Hatvany. Although it's very simply written, it ended up being very thought-provoking. You can feel the author's pain come through on this one (it's borderline memoir - per her interview at the end). I don't drink alcohol, so I'm often given these kinds of books. I don't always read them, but something made me read this one. I'm glad I did. I think it's timely and important; and helpful. I want to say it is "chick lit" - but it had the kind of ending which gives me pause saying that. I enjoyed it.
I bought and started Hab ich selbst gemacht today. It is a book by a german journalist who starts the experiment to make almost everything of daily life herself: she bakes her own bread, tries to make soap, toothpaste, starts gardening on top of a garage, knitts, sews and so forth. So far it is really interesting and also funny. I also do learn a lot of things.
OMG! I have been saving for this sale for a month and went book shopping today. SO I am currently finishing up another. M. J . Rose books. I also picked up the rest of her sexual thirller series. SO super addictive. I bought A Dream unfolding for a trip of days long ago. I bought another copy of Here Home, Hope by Kaira Rhouda for my friends birthday, I sent a copy of The Last Letter to a friend at church for all she does with childrens church. I love that book. I also am about to start my Come Back To Me by Melissa Foster. I can not seem to read fast enough these days as I have gotten and found so many books I am dying to start. lol I guess that comes from being part of groups like this hearing about such great and well loved books from others. :)
Porua, I'll be reading The Shadow of the Wind in the next 2 weeks for my RL book club. I know I have to get to it, but first there are some great reads I went to do. I just finished and reviewed an audiobook of Catch 22, a wonderful book but I had to subtract a star for its complete sexism. I know now why you asked, Rockjt, who narrated the book. At the end of my audiobook there were excerpts of Joseph Heller narrating. I'm glad I didn't have to listen to 16 CD's of that. I also finished and reviewed Elizabeth and Hazel: Two Women of Little Rock which would be a great book club book because it raises so many issues for discussion. Now I've started The Country of Pointed Firs by Sarah Orne Jewett and listening to an audiobook of Flight by Sherman Alexie.
It's been a long time since I've been over here! Good to be back... This week I've so far finished Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick, as part of my feeble attempt to read my way around all the key Hallowe'en folk by the end of October - I actually only managed ghosts (James Herbert's Haunted), werewolves (Glen Duncan's The Last Werewolf) and angels. Now I'm nearly at the end of earthy comedian Jo Brand's autobiography, Look Back in Hunger. After that, who knows?
#57> "I know now why you asked, Rockjt, who narrated the book. At the end of my audiobook there were excerpts of Joseph Heller narrating. I'm glad I didn't have to listen to 16 CD's of that."
Actually, that wasn't why I asked. I've never heard Heller's reading. I was just curious. :)
The French novel You Deserve Nothing by Alexander Maksik came in on my waiting list at the library, so I went and picked that up and started reading. Cannot put it down ... kinda creepy, kinda different ... Lolita meets Freedom, or something. While the teacher-has-affair-with-student has certainly been done before, somehow he makes this seem rather new.
Couldn't agree more. I've been a Sharyn NcCrumb/Ballad novels fan for years, but couldn't get through the Devil Amongst the Lawyers Maybe next time.
(62) divinenanny, have you read The Last Unicorn before?
If not, you're in for a treat: it's MUCH better than the cartoon 'movie'.
I should read that again...it's been a while. :)
I finished The Brothers of Baker Street and liked it better than the first book, which I also enjoyed.
Now I'm looking at my shelves, to read something that I've not read before but has been sitting for a while...
I picked up The Witch's Daughter and was quickly pulled in. The narrative goes back and forth in time, and when it is well done, I enjoy that.
Started my ER book Zeina by Nawal El Saadawi last night. Barely into it, tho.
#56 & 57
I really liked Shadow of the Wind when I read it several years ago. I have since read the second book Angel's Game in the Zafon's Barcelona series. He has planned to write four books set in the city of Barcelona during different time periods. I like his writing. He manages to make the setting come alive. I agree that the motivations of his characters is sometimes melodramatic, but the city of Barcelona as a place is very well done. Makes me want to go see it just as reading Night Train to Lisbon and Small Death in Lisbon did for Lisbon, Portugal. Gotta love a book that can do that.
I am deep into Potsdam Station and can't seem to turn the pages fast enough to find out what happens next. David Downing is getting better with each book he writes. This one is packed with action compared to the others in the Jack Russell series. They were more about the setting and feeling of the place - all atmosphere. This one is all thriller.
#63 fuzzi, Nope, never read The Last Unicorn before, and neither have I seen the movie. I just know vaguely in the back of my mind that it is good, so when I found it second hand for 50 cents, I picked it up :D
I just finished an audiobook of Flight by Sherman Alexie, another home run for him, but this time without the humor. It's a pretty disturbing book about Indians, of course, orphans, foster care and the futility of revenge both on a personal and national level. The guy is a treasure. Now I start the audiobook of Finding Iris Chang: Friendship, Ambition and the Loss of an Extraordinary Mind. I've never read The Rape of Nanking, by now feel impelled to order it.
I picked up The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn last night. I'd never read it before, and it's been on my shelf for a few months, so I thought I'd give it a try.
Two chapters later I'm not sure I want to continue.
For those who have read this book, what do you think? Is it worth it?
I am spreading the word about David Downing. His series about Jack Russell are great thriller/spy/war novels. I finally gave up on the old Nook and so put in an Inter-Library Loan request for Potsdam Station. It came yesterday and I picked it up on the way home. Then I started reading. I finally made myself quit at 12:45 a.m. Now I can't wait for lunch hour so that I can read more. Potsdam Station is all about the fall of Berlin in April 1945 and it is a real thriller. If you like spy novels or spy thriller type books try this series. The first three in the series were more like an Alan Furst book in that they were more atmospheric. This one is totally different and reads more like one of the best war novels. I keep thinking about Woman in Berlin and Fall of Berlin 1945 as I am reading this one.
#77> Yes. Times a thousand. One of the great social satires, examinations of the foibles of human nature, and explorations of the insanity of slavery in American literature. Sez I, anyway.
I've given up on Charlotte Temple and Lucy Temple by Susanna Rowson. I expect to find moralizing in a book of this nature, and genrally don't mind it at all, but there was just far too much of it for my taste.
Now I've started Footsteps in the Dark by Georgette Heyer, which I wish I'd read for Halloween as it seems to be a fun combination of mystery and ghost story. I've never read Georgette Heyer before. I associated her too much with romance novels, and, while this cozy brand of mystery is no less fluffy, it's a style of fluff that's more to my taste.
#77 fuzzi: Yes, I urge you to keep on with The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. I read it for the first time this summer and phoned the member of our book club who had suggested it to thank her. Huck is marvelously heroic in so many ways and is a character who shouldn't be missed. I foolishly thought I had read it years ago but I was mixing it up with The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, a book for children. While kids will enjoy Huck's adventures, I feel this book was truly written for adults.
#72/78 - Just came back to day, Mark and Booksloth are so right, Columbine is a mesmerizing read.
I finished You Deserve Nothing and it was great. I have no clue how I feel about any of it though, other than we live in a pretty messed up (emotionally) word!
I am now reading "happy" fiction in Blind Your Ponies by Stanley G. West. Now that I'm a writer, I was intrigued by the author's peddling his wares before it was signed up by a publisher. It's actually a very good story, great characters, but you kind of have to accept the flowery (even a bit goofy), simple language. In a weird way its refreshing after the mountains of hate (self and otherwise) in the last book I read. I guess I look at it a bit more of a fable or something, and with that, I'm sinking in and enjoying it. It's really ripped on here at LT, so I just wanted to offer some good things about it.
Goodness ~ I haven't been here in just about forever. Seem to have gotten wrapped up in life lately and my reading has suffered a bit as a result. However, I did just start Every Last One by Anna Quindlen last night. Only a few pages in, so too soon to have an opinion but so far, so good.
#89 - fuzzi - I read The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn in highschool and had an Excellent teacher that year. LOVED the book as a result and it still remains one of my favorite books of all time. Hopefully your able to give it another go. Amazing how the right teacher can have such positive lifelong effects. :)
#89 Fuzzi: I'd like to add my voice to those who are encouraging you to continue with The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. It showcases Twain's wit and genious more than any of his other works I've read. At times, you do have to bear in mind the time and place in which it was written, but it's certainly well worth overlooking some antiquated attitudes.
I'm new around these boards so I thought I'd look around for who is reading what. Looks like I missed "Halloween week" reading, but I didn't see an November thread yet. For the Halloween season:
Straight to Hell by Michelle Scott - a cozy paranormal
The Cadaver Client by Frank Tuttle - an urban fantasy/pulp fiction
Both were excellent. Not too scary, but full of atmosphere and great plots.
I finished reading Potsdam Station late last night. I couldn't put this book down. Those of you who like spy novels, thrillers, or World War II novels will really like this one. It reads much more like a thriller than it does the previous books in this series. David Downing continues to improve as an author and I have to wonder what he will do next with these characters. Even though this is book four I thought that the approach to the characters was fresh and I was not at all bored with them. I want more. Now I have to wait until next spring when the fifth book in the series comes out so that I can see what happens to the family in the post-war era.
I was so desperate to finish reading this book that I put in an Inter-Library Loan request for the book after my Nook gave up and died. It was worth getting it in whatever format it was available.
All this talk about David Downing's 'Station' books piqued my curiosity: I went to the library this afternoon and got the first in the series, Zoo Station.
I'll have you know, I'm putting The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn on the back burner until I read the book from the library...
...it's all your fault! ;)
bearmountainbooks, may we call you maria?, welcome to What Are You Reading Now? These what are you reading threads run for a week from when some one of us starts it on Saturday until some one of us starts a new one the following Saturday. You can provide us more information on what you are reading by enclosing your titles in square brackets as shown to the right of the Add A Message box under 'Touchstones;' if the match is not exact it lets you search for the right match.
I am between books and may not be into a new one until after the new thread starts tomorrow.
Oh, hey, thanks Robert--for the welcome and the way to enclose a book. Let's see: straight to hell
I think it worked! (I'm not exactly sure what it will look like until I hit post...)
I'm not sure what I'll start next either. I sampled through some things on my Kindle but nothing grabbed me right off.
#96 Bearmountainbooks: Welcome to our litte bookish corner of the internet!
Don't worry about missing Halloween! The book I'm reading, Footsteps in the Dark by Georgette Heyer is the perfect Halloween read as well. It's a golden age mystery set in an old, ruined priory that is haunted by the ghost of a monk. I'm loving it! There is a big, rambling home wth all kinds of secret hidey-holes, etc., and it's set in an age when the local constabulary operated out of his own home and offered complainants a nice cuppa. To add to my enjoyment, it's perfect reading weather today...rainy and chilly - the perfect weather to curl up with a cozy book!
Yesterday I finished Ann Veronica by H G Wells, which I enjoyed. Today I will begin Comet in Moominland by Tove Jansson. The interesting thing I found about this book when I bought it: the paper back is suitable for ages 7+ but the hard back is suitable for 9+. Do you need the extra 2 years life experience in order to lift up the heavier book?
77>, 80>, 84>, 89>, 90>, 91>, 94> I reread The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn a few years back and found it forgettable, even while was reading it; and the last few chapters are a mistake.
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