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Anita (FAMeulstee) is able to read again; first thread of 2016

75 Books Challenge for 2016

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1FAMeulstee
Edited: Apr 4, 2016, 10:21am Top

I am Anita Meulstee from Lelystad, the Netherlands, where I live with my husband Frank and two dogs: Chimay a 11 year old smooth Chow Chow and Ari, a 5 year old Pekingese.
I joined the 75 group in 2008, but have not been been around much in the last years. The last months of 2015 a bit more active on my thread, as I can read again!

After nearly 4 years I have weaned off the Paxil and my reading ability has returned. I have read 25+ books in 2015 and hope to go for 75+ again this year :-)

Wish everyone happy readings in 2016!

---

Currently reading: Het verhaal van Genji and De meester en margarita

Books read
book 1: Mama Tandoori by Ernest van der Kwast, 207 pages, 4 stars
book 2: Kukel by Joke van Leeuwen, 152 pages, 3 1/2 stars
book 3: De graaf van Monte-Cristo by Alexandre Dumas, 937 pages, 5 stars
book 4: Slecht by Jan Simoen, 94 pages, 3 stars
book 5: De winterroos (The Winter Rose) by Jennifer Donnelly, 719 pages, 4 stars
book 6: Vlam van Zeven Wateren by Juliet Marillier, 448 pages, 4 stars
book 7: De wilde roos (The Wild Rose) by Jennifer Donnelly, 736 pages, 4 stars
book 8: Dochter van het woud by Juliet Marillier, 576 pages, 4 1/2stars
book 9: En ook weemoedigheid by J.J. Voskuil, 927 pages, 4 1/2 stars
book 10: Afgang by J.J. Voskuil, 700 pages, 4 1/2 stars
book 11: De dood van Maarten Koning, 226 pages, 4 1/2 stars
book 12: Zoon van de schaduwen by Juliet Marillier, 576 pages, 4 stars
book 13: Kind van de profetie by Juliet Marillier, 573 pages, 3 1/2 stars
book 14: Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod by Gary Paulsen , 254 pages, 4 1/2 stars
book 15: Hasse Simonsdochter by Thea Beckman, 260 pages, 4 stars
book 16: Negen levens by William Dalrymple, 320 pages, 4 1/2 stars
book 17: Ywein, de ridder met de leeuw by Chrétien de Troyes, 170 pages, 4 stars
book 18: De jongen die met piranha's zwom by David Almond, 192 pages, 4 1/2 stars
book 19: Koekoeksjong by Robert Galbraith, 519 pages, 4 stars
book 20: De stem van Tamar by David Grossman, 414 pages, 4 stars

total: 9000 pages

---

Books aquired in 2016

6 jan De graaf van Monte-Cristo (2nd hand)
12 jan Slecht (e-book)
2 feb Idyllen nieuwe poëzie
4 feb Koude berg : onthechting als weg
6 feb Winterdance
16 feb Dochter van het woud, Zoon van de schaduwen & Kind van de profetie (2nd hand)
22 feb Het verhaal van Genji (e-book)
15 mar Dokter Zjivago by Boris Pasternak & Broer by Esther Gerritsen

total 11 books

2drneutron
Dec 24, 2015, 11:12am Top

Welcome back!

3PaulCranswick
Dec 24, 2015, 11:29am Top

Nice to see you back Anita. xx

4FAMeulstee
Dec 24, 2015, 4:52pm Top

Thanks Jim and Paul!

5Ameise1
Dec 24, 2015, 6:17pm Top

Great to see you here, Anita. I'll be following in 2016.

6maggie1944
Dec 25, 2015, 8:37am Top

Welcome back to the fun and books! I've dropped a star on your thread and I hope to keep up in the new year. I am glad you feel able to read again. I went through some times when reading was hard, near impossible, for me, too. Had to do with cataract surgery recovery and adjusting to new reading glasses. I'm doing better, although real life does compete for my time. Oh! Sigh!

Here's lifting my coffee cup, this morning, for a Happy New Year for us all!

7heathrel
Dec 25, 2015, 3:46pm Top

It's great to be with you here, Anita. I know how hard it is not to be able to read. I've had periods of that too.

Here's to a wonderful 2016!

8FAMeulstee
Dec 25, 2015, 9:21pm Top

Hi Barbara, Karen and Heather, welcome on my new thread, I will follow yours in 2016!

I am sorry for you both, Karen and Heather, that you know what not able to read is :-(
Hoping I won't have to face it again, but if needed I will go through again. At least I know now it will only be temporary. The first time on Paxil I thought I had lost reading forever...

Wish you all a happy readings in 2016 and may some hopes and dreams come true :-D

9thornton37814
Dec 29, 2015, 12:25pm Top

Glad to see you are returning, hopefully full-force, in 2016, Anita. Dropping my star to follow along.

10FAMeulstee
Dec 31, 2015, 11:39am Top

>9 thornton37814: thank you Lori, the last 2 months of 2015 were good for half of my total 2015 readings... so I think I am heading for a great reading year :-)

11karenmarie
Dec 31, 2015, 2:15pm Top

I can't imagine not being able to read and admire your getting weaned off Paxil and being able to read again.

I wish you a good reading year in 2016.

12Ameise1
Dec 31, 2015, 3:23pm Top

13FAMeulstee
Dec 31, 2015, 5:49pm Top

>11 karenmarie: thanks Karen, I am so glad you can't imagine that :-)
The weaning offf went so easy, very different than previous times. Despite difficult last months of the year I am feeling psychically very well.

Wish you the same!

14FAMeulstee
Dec 31, 2015, 5:50pm Top

>12 Ameise1: the same to you Barbara, 10 minutes to go!

15FAMeulstee
Dec 31, 2015, 7:51pm Top

As I could not sleep (both dogs are sleeping, the noise outside is nearly gone), I finished my first book in 2016:

book 1


book 1: Mama Tandoori by Ernest van der Kwast
own, Dutch, awarded Dioraphte Jongerenliteratuur Prijs (publieksprijs, 2011)

Ernest grows up in Rotterdam, his father is Dutch and his mother comes from India. His mother wants her 3 boys to be succesful in life and will do anything to make that dream come true...

Very funny book about a growing up with a difficult mother.

4 stars

16ronincats
Edited: Jan 1, 2016, 9:56pm Top

Waiting for 2016 to arrive here, but I've already placed a star on your thread, Anita. Please give Frank, Chimay and Ari hugs for me, and take one for yourself too!


Happy New Year!

17Deern
Jan 1, 2016, 2:53am Top

Wow, that was an early first book! Happy New Year again, Anita! Relieved that the dogs fell asleep because I thought it might be even harder for them in a different environment.
Here it has been super-noisy this year - more "unofficial" fireworks than ever, also in the direct neighborhood, and one poor dog here has been howling forever.

18Ameise1
Jan 1, 2016, 4:27am Top

Wow, congrats on finishing the first book. I started a new one yesterday but I'm nowhere to see the end of it.

19FAMeulstee
Jan 1, 2016, 6:21am Top

>16 ronincats: Thank you Roni, happy New Year to you.
Hugs given, Frank is safely back from work and catching up some sleep. Chimay and Ari laying next to me, a nice and quiet morning :-)

>17 Deern: Yes, Nathalie, it was an early book, as I started it only yesterday!
The dogs don't care much about different places, as long as we are all together... Frank was missing, but they knew he went to work. Maybe a different environment is even easier, as all the time we are here there are noises of fireworks in the distance, so maybe they think this place is always like that ;-)

Sorry for the poor dog in your neighborhood, I hope he did not keep you from sleeping. And Happy New Year to you!

>18 Ameise1: Thanks Barbara, it was only 208 pages and a fairly light read.

20charl08
Jan 1, 2016, 7:13am Top

Glad to hear you are able to read again. Wishing you a wonderful 2016.

21FAMeulstee
Jan 1, 2016, 8:23am Top

>20 charl08: Thank you Charlotte, the same to you!
Now I can catch up with the books I aquired in the past years ;-)

22foggidawn
Jan 1, 2016, 11:11am Top

Happy New Year and new thread!

23Whisper1
Jan 1, 2016, 11:30am Top

Welcome back Dear Anita. I look forward to your young adult recommendations in 2016. May 2016 be healthy and happy for you, Frank, and the furry kids.

24FAMeulstee
Jan 1, 2016, 2:29pm Top

>22 foggidawn: Thanks Foggi

>23 Whisper1: Thank you Linda, the same to you and yours!
I have a lot of YA waiting patiently on the shelves :-)

25streamsong
Jan 1, 2016, 4:16pm Top

Happy, happy New Year to you and yours.

I'm so impressed that you've finished a book already!

26souloftherose
Jan 2, 2016, 4:47am Top

Welcome back Anita and happy new year!

27avatiakh
Jan 2, 2016, 4:51am Top

Hi Anita, wishing you a Happy New Year full of books and reading, dogs too, of course.

28PaulCranswick
Jan 2, 2016, 10:12am Top



Have a wonderful bookfilled 2016, Anita. xx

29FAMeulstee
Jan 2, 2016, 4:37pm Top

>25 streamsong: Thanks Janet, the same to you and yours.
I was impressed myself too ;-)

>26 souloftherose: Thank you Heather, the same to you!

>27 avatiakh: Thanks Kerry, yes of course books and dogs (and some flowers in the garden) :-)

>28 PaulCranswick: Thanks Paul, nice picture, although a bit chilly ;-)
It is ages ago I had skates on!

30billiejean
Jan 3, 2016, 6:16pm Top

Happy New Year, Anita, and happy reading!

31dk_phoenix
Jan 3, 2016, 6:31pm Top

Happy New Year, Anita! Glad your reading ability has returned and looking forward to seeing what you read this year!

32saraslibrary
Jan 4, 2016, 12:14am Top

Hi, Anita! :) Thanks for stopping by my thread; I thought I'd return the favor. Good job on finishing a book already! I'm rooting for you to finish 75 this year. :) *hugs*

33FAMeulstee
Jan 4, 2016, 1:04pm Top

>30 billiejean: Thanks BJ, happy reading is sure happening :-)

>31 dk_phoenix: hi Faith & thank you.
Difficulty with reading was not only books, but also the threads here... one year (2013) I had no thread here, but visiting others was to much a struggle :-(
Now its easier, yesterday for a moment I had catched up with all threads!

>32 saraslibrary: You are welcome Sara, and thank you.
I think I'll make it to 75 this year :-)

34porch_reader
Jan 4, 2016, 7:31pm Top

Happy New Year, Anita! I hope that 2016 brings you lots of great reads!

35EllaTim
Jan 4, 2016, 7:43pm Top

Hi Anita, I have you starred. Happy New Year!

36FAMeulstee
Jan 5, 2016, 12:50pm Top

>34 porch_reader: Thanks Amy, I certainly hope so too :-)

>35 EllaTim: The same to you Ella :-)

37FAMeulstee
Jan 5, 2016, 12:53pm Top

I haven't been reading much, well I have been reading, but mainly the threads here and no books ;-)
I am so happy I CAN read all threads, won't keep doing it but it feels so good!

38Deern
Jan 5, 2016, 1:20pm Top

>37 FAMeulstee: I haven't been reading much, well I have been reading, but mainly the threads here and no books ;-)
Same here, and the threads are still running fast.
It's wonderful that you can read again!! :)

39thornton37814
Jan 5, 2016, 9:28pm Top

>37 FAMeulstee: I can definitely relate to that! I'm in the same boat.

40FAMeulstee
Jan 6, 2016, 9:41am Top

>38 Deern: >39 thornton37814: Then I am not the only one, Nathalie and Lori ;-)

Today the first aquired book of 2016 entered my home: De graaf van Monte-Cristo, 937 pages, qualifies for the Doorstopper challenge!

41streamsong
Jan 6, 2016, 9:56am Top

Happy New Year, Anita!

Oh, I love The Count of Monte Cristo. I first read it in high school and then have reread it several times since. Such a great tale of revenge and swashbuckling and honor and all that good stuff!

42jnwelch
Jan 6, 2016, 12:10pm Top

Me, too, Anita. Despite that size and its "classic" status, The Count of Monte Cristo is a fun page-turner.

43FAMeulstee
Jan 6, 2016, 2:48pm Top

>41 streamsong: >42 jnwelch: So my next read it will be :-)

44maggie1944
Jan 6, 2016, 2:53pm Top

It sounds like a great start to the year!

45FAMeulstee
Edited: Jan 6, 2016, 4:41pm Top


book 2: Kukel by Joke van Leeuwen
own, Dutch, awarded Zilveren Griffel 1999

Kukels real name is Josofus, but everyone calls him Kukel. He has seven sisters who all can sing beautifully, but he isn't allowed to go with them because he can't sing... When they go on tour they leave him in an orphanidge. Kukel doesn't like it and escapes and finds himself in the palace of the Queen.

I have read better books by this author...

3 1/2 stars

46FAMeulstee
Jan 6, 2016, 2:56pm Top

>44 maggie1944: thanks Karen, well the next one wasn't what I hoped for, but now I'll start with The Count of Monte Cristo

47Deern
Jan 7, 2016, 2:23am Top

>40 FAMeulstee: I read that one maybe 4 years ago and despite its length it was a really quick and fun read. One of the best classic pageturners ever - enjoy! :)

48FAMeulstee
Jan 7, 2016, 11:33am Top

I am reading fast, more than 100 pages (of 937) done.

Does anyone remember the television adaption from the 70s, with Richard Chamberlain I think?

49Donna828
Jan 8, 2016, 1:53pm Top

Welcome back, Anita. I'm so glad you are able to read again. I have been wanting to read The Count of Monte Cristo for a long time now, but I never seem to pick it up. The only book adaptation I remember featuring Richard Chamberlain was the excellent The Thorn Birds. Wishing you good health and good reading in 2016.

50Ameise1
Jan 9, 2016, 7:29am Top

Wishing you a most lovely weekend, Anita.

51EllaTim
Jan 9, 2016, 9:18am Top

Hi Anita, I never managed to read De Graaf van Monte Christo, but I was a real fan of The Three Musketeers.

I might pick up some recommendations for dutch authors from you, I'm completely out of the loop when it comes to that.

Have a nice weekend, maybe some sun at last, would be nice, wouldn't it?

52FAMeulstee
Jan 9, 2016, 5:23pm Top

>49 Donna828: Thank you Donna, I am a fan of The Count of Monte Cristo, more than half way now and loving it :-)
Richard Chamberlain was a lot on TV in that time, also in Shogun & The Three Musketeers :-)

>50 Ameise1: Thanks Barbara, excellent weekend... reading a lot, it is hard to put down The Count of Monte Cristo....

>51 EllaTim: I read a lot of YA, as I collect awarded Childrens books and YA (Young Adult), all Gouden Griffels, Zilveren Griffels en Vlag en Wimpels tot 2000 & some other Dutch awards, you can find them in my library under the tag "bekroond".
I try to rate all books I have read, all I have read in the past years can be found in the collection "gelezen door Anita sedert 2008"

53Ameise1
Jan 9, 2016, 5:27pm Top

I've read The Count of Monte Cristo as a teen. It's a fabulous book.

54EllaTim
Jan 9, 2016, 6:37pm Top

Neat! I had a look at your library. It says we have 33 books in common. Tonke Dragt is one of my favorite authors.
I've read Oorlogswinter recently. And Alleen op de wereld has been reread so many times that the cover has come off.

55thornton37814
Jan 9, 2016, 6:40pm Top

>52 FAMeulstee: >53 Ameise1: We read The Count of Monte Cristo back in 10th grade. Our teacher made it enjoyable, and I think we absolutely loved the book. I think most of us would not have encountered the book on our own, but we all came away with a love for Dumas that prompted many of us to seek out other books by him.

56Deern
Jan 10, 2016, 12:13pm Top

I only remember Gerard Depardieu in that role, but I preferred the book, that miniseries seemed incomplete.
Yes, "Shogun" and "The Thorn Birds" were great. Good old TV times! :)

57PaulCranswick
Jan 10, 2016, 5:53pm Top

Hope the little bit left of Sunday you still have is kind to you Anita.

58FAMeulstee
Jan 11, 2016, 11:09am Top

>53 Ameise1: Yes it is Barbara, I just finised it :-)

>54 EllaTim: Ah, Ella, the wonders of LibraryThing, like comparing libraries and this group, it is great!
I got this edition of Alleen op de wereld somewhere around 2000, the previous one I had was an abridged version, that was worn out from reading too.

>55 thornton37814: It was a book missing from my library, Lori, but one I intended to read someday. Most Dutch versions are abridged, so I was very happy to find the unabridged version recently second hand. I started immediately when it arrived. I loved it!
Must have been great to read it so young, when books impress more than later in life.

>56 Deern: I never saw that TV adaption, Nathalie, but I nearly always prefer the book over filmed version ;-)

>57 PaulCranswick: Yes, I was completely wrapped up in my book, Paul :-D

59FAMeulstee
Jan 11, 2016, 11:16am Top


book 3: De graaf van Monte-Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
own, translated, French

What can I say about this well known romantic tale of revenge, served as a very cold dish...
I loved it, could hardly wait until I had a few minutes to read on. And a bit sorry for myself this great read has ended, but I will "wait and hope" for a next book as great is this one ;-)

5 stars

60FAMeulstee
Jan 11, 2016, 11:29am Top

I am a bit sad, because David Bowie died... he was a great artist and will be missed by many.

61jnwelch
Jan 12, 2016, 1:04pm Top

>59 FAMeulstee: Yay! So glad you had a good time with the Dumas book, Anita! Great book.

>60 FAMeulstee: I know. I didn't realize David Bowie was fighting cancer. Such a young age to pass away these days. He was a great artist, as you say, and by all accounts a kind man.

62ronincats
Jan 12, 2016, 1:49pm Top

Anita, I am so happy that you are reading so well!

63FAMeulstee
Edited: Jan 12, 2016, 3:25pm Top

>61 jnwelch: Yes Joe, great book :-)
Just a few days ago Frank and I were talking when we heard a song from David Bowie's new album on the radio, that he was so great in renewing himself musically, as he never stayed in one style, but always went on to find something else.

>62 ronincats: and I am even happier, Roni :-)

64FAMeulstee
Jan 12, 2016, 5:16pm Top

Reading my very first e-book!!!!!!!!

Today my Kobe e-reader arrived, a very early birthday present :-)
Bought my first e-book: Slecht, and am reading it now.

65EllaTim
Edited: Jan 12, 2016, 7:00pm Top


Have fun with your e-reader!

I had one as a birthday present as well, a Sony. I love it, especially for reading in bed, nice and small and light, and I can choose larger letters, so I don't nead my reading glasses;))

66banjo123
Jan 12, 2016, 7:51pm Top

I am so happy you are able to read! Do you know why the medication stopped you from reading?

And hooray for the Count of Monte Cristo!

67Deern
Jan 13, 2016, 7:09am Top

Now that was a quick read! I also gave 5 stars, such a great book, I'm glad you liked it so much. And yay for the e-Reader! :D

68FAMeulstee
Jan 14, 2016, 3:14pm Top

>65 EllaTim: It is a nice device, next week there is in the library an afternoon where will be explained how to lend e-books, I hope I'll pick it up, lending library e-books looks like a great advantage!

>66 banjo123: I don't know Rhonda, both Paxil and Effexor are SSRI's (Selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors) and both worked well keeping Depression away. I tried many others (Zoloft, Anafranil, Prozac to name a few) but they had terrible side effects (from total apatic to way more depressed), so I was happy to know 2 that worked, as after some years their effect declined and I had to go to the other one.
And this time I am very happy I could wean off and did not need to take Effexor again (as Effexor made my cholesterol way too high...)

>67 Deern: Yes, in 5 days, Nathalie, although I tried to slow down when I came to the last part, so it would last as long as possible ;-)

69FAMeulstee
Jan 14, 2016, 3:22pm Top


book 4: Slecht by Jan Simoen
own, e-book, Dutch, awarded, Gouden Zoen 2008

I don't know why this book won the "Gouden Zoen", the highest praise for YA, in 2008. The other YA books must have been terrible that year.

A sixteen year old boy has been taken to the police station. He is questioned by an officer and left alone for some time. Through the talk with the police officer and his own thoughts when left alone, we find out he hasn't been nice to his ex-girlfriend, though he keeps thinking is wasn't that bad...

3 stars

70EllaTim
Jan 14, 2016, 9:28pm Top

>68 FAMeulstee: That is bound to be useful. I nearly went to the library today, but it was snowing... so just to be able to download an e-book would have been really handy.

71FAMeulstee
Edited: Jan 15, 2016, 10:51am Top

>70 EllaTim: Today I made an account at bibliotheek.nl and download my first e-book from the library, but have no clue how to get it to my e-reader... well I will learn that next week, I hope....

Reading De winterroos (The Winter Rose) by Jennifer Donnelly

72karenmarie
Jan 15, 2016, 7:15pm Top

I don't know why this book won the "Gouden Zoen", the highest praise for YA, in 2008. The other YA books must have been terrible that year.

I laughed out loud, Anita - there are so many books that win awards and I'm thinking "Huh? What am I missing?" but I never thought about the comparison with worse books.

73Ameise1
Jan 16, 2016, 2:53pm Top

Anita, I wish you a relaxed weekend.

74FAMeulstee
Jan 17, 2016, 2:16pm Top

>72 karenmarie: Glad I made you laugh, Karen :-)

>73 Ameise1: Had a great weekend, Barbara, reading The Winter Rose!

75FAMeulstee
Jan 17, 2016, 2:45pm Top


book 5: De winterroos by Jennifer Donnelly
from the library, historic romance, translated (original title The Winter Rose, 2nd book from 3 The Tea Rose)

Start of the 20th century London, India Selwyn Jones just finished her degree to be a doctor. Her wealthy family abandoned her because of her ambition, but all she wants is to help the poor people of London.
Her fiance Freddie is a member of parliament, who finds Joe Bristow (from the previous book) on his way to victory, and he doesn't take his defeat lightly...
In her quest to help, India meets Sid Malone, a gangster-boss, and they fall in love. Their love is not to last, becaus Sid is sought for murder...

Again very nice romantic historical fiction, hard to put the book down!. There is one more to do and I am eager to get that one from the library too :-)

4 stars

76Ameise1
Jan 17, 2016, 3:26pm Top

Great review. I haven't started the series yet.

77EllaTim
Jan 18, 2016, 6:26pm Top

Seems like that was a good read for you! I understood that you had trouble reading, but that things are better now. You must have missed it a lot I would think.

I'm having a hard time keeping up with reading this group! How do you manage it?

78FAMeulstee
Jan 20, 2016, 2:52pm Top

>76 Ameise1: Thank you Barbara, I hope you like it, it is a fairly light read.

>77 EllaTim: Yes I have missed it an awful lot, nearly 4 years this time, very happy to be back in "reading modus" :-D
It is impossible to keep up with everyone in the group. I have starred everyone who came to my thread & some with similair reading preferences (YA, fantasy) & a few I knew from previous years; with these I keep up.
The first 2 weeks I try to read everything, but soon enough I accept that it is mission impossible ;-)

79FAMeulstee
Jan 20, 2016, 2:56pm Top

Reading my second e-book, it is from the library: Vlam van Zeven Wateren (translation of Flame of Sevenwaters, it is the sixth book in a series, but the others are not available as e-book, so I have to get them someday from the library.
But it will have to wait a while, Frank is having a hard time (he had to do way too much for the last months), so even a visit to the library on my behalf is too much now :-(
Dreading for the day I can drive the car myself again!

80Ameise1
Jan 23, 2016, 6:23am Top

Happy weekend, Anita. Stay safe and warm.

81PaulCranswick
Jan 24, 2016, 2:07am Top

>75 FAMeulstee: Jennifer Donnelly is a writer on my to do list Anita.

Have a great Sunday.

82FAMeulstee
Edited: Jan 24, 2016, 3:44pm Top

Thanks Barbara & Paul!

Sunday morning:
We are just back from the vet, Ari, our Pekingese, had an infected eye.
At the vet was discovered that he has a hole in his left eye (I feel so bad that I missed that!), in the left upper corner if his iris (cornea).
We hope it will heal. Now I have to drop some antibiotics in the eye 6 times a day and back to the vet on Thursday or sooner when there is no improvement....
We have no clue how it happend, probably he ran into a small branch or something, whatever it was, we did not notice anything :-(

83FAMeulstee
Edited: Jan 24, 2016, 3:46pm Top


book 6: Vlam van Zeven Wateren by Juliet Marillier
from the library, e-book, fantasy, romance, translated (original title Flame of Sevenwaters, 6th book from 6 series Sevenwaters)

I haven't read the first 5 books of this series, but had read books by Juliet Marillier before and liked them. So when I tried to lend an e-book from the library for the first time, this book was calling for me ;-) It was a bit of a hassle to get the book onto my e-reader, but I finally managed after a few days.

At the dawn of Christianity taking over Ireland, a family lives still close to nature and the old ways.
Maeve, one of their daughters was severly hurt in a fire and was send to Brittain to live with her uncle and aunt (who is a healer), in hope she could heal there. Sadly the burns on her hands were so bad, she still can not use them.
Ten years later she returns to Seven Waters to accompany a stallion that only calms under her hands. She finds her home and family at war with a fey prince: Mac Dara. And it takes a lot of adventures, losses and courage to make an end to this terrible war...

A very nice fantasy book, with faëries, feys and elements of fairy tales. I liked it much, so now I will probably read the 5 previous books too this year ;-)

4 stars

84ronincats
Jan 24, 2016, 11:31pm Top

So sorry for poor Ari, Anita. Hope his eye heals properly.

85Deern
Jan 25, 2016, 7:44am Top

>82 FAMeulstee: Poor Ari!! I hope the antibiotics are helping with the infection.

86FAMeulstee
Jan 25, 2016, 9:03am Top

>84 ronincats: & >85 Deern:

Thanks Roni & Nathalie
The infection is going away, but his eyeball is a bit more swollen today :-(
He sleeps a lot, if the eye is going to heal it will take a lot of time...

87FAMeulstee
Jan 27, 2016, 6:25am Top

Back to the vet with Ari yesterday, did not look good :-(
This afternoon an appointment with an eye-specialist to see if the eye can be saved....

88kidzdoc
Jan 27, 2016, 8:14am Top

I hope that the eye specialist can help Ari, Anita.

89FAMeulstee
Edited: Jan 27, 2016, 1:12pm Top

GOOD NEWS: Ari's eye looked better today and the eye-specialist was optimistic. The infection is gone and she saw blood vessels around the wound, that means the eye is healing :-D
Ari was very good, the eye-specialist vet was smart, she did everything first to his good eye end then to the other, so he was less suspicious ;-)

Antibiotic drops back to 4 times a day, until the hole is closed & keep him on painkiller until then too.

We are SO relieved! (happy dance)

>88 kidzdoc: thank you Darryl, it was better news that we anticipated :-)

90ronincats
Jan 27, 2016, 2:00pm Top

Oh, happy day! That IS good news! Hugs all around.

91charl08
Jan 27, 2016, 2:34pm Top

Glad to hear the good news. You must be very relieved.

92FAMeulstee
Jan 27, 2016, 4:44pm Top

>90 ronincats: & >91 charl08: thanks Roni & Charlotte, happiness all around :-)

Could not decide what to read next, taking care of Ari was/is time consuming. But today when we went to the eye-specialist vet I did not want to be bookless in the waiting room, so I started book 5 of Het Bureau: En ook weemoedigheid by J.J. Voskuil
I started this series (Het Bureau) in 2012, raced through book 1, 2 & 3 but when I was reading book 4 my reading ablility declined and it was hard work to finish that one.
Started to read in the waiting room at the vet and was right back into the story :-)

93FAMeulstee
Feb 4, 2016, 4:28pm Top

Put En ook weemoedigheid aside, as I was at an natural break at the end of 1980, and I got The Wild Rose, the last book of the Tea Rose series, from the library and could not resist it :-)

Ari is doing fine, but I really don't see the hole in his eye getting smaller... well what do I expect... it will take 2 to 3 months to heal, so visible improvement will take time.

94FAMeulstee
Edited: Feb 4, 2016, 5:27pm Top

Two books and a CD entered the house already in February :-)

Koude Berg (Cold Mountain) 225 poems by Han Shan
Idyllen nieuwe poëzie by Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer, also poetry, winner of the big poetry-prize in the Netherlands the VSB Poëzieprijs 2016.

and the last CD by Bowie: Blackstar

95vancouverdeb
Feb 4, 2016, 6:28pm Top

So happy that Ari's eye can be bettered, Anita! Sorry to hear it will take time. I know just what you mean about the rain and walking dogs. Poppy is just past 2 years old and very active, so rain or shine, she really needs her walks twice a day. I do the daytime walk - about 2 miles and my husband does the after dark walk. He lets her off leash and she loves to chase a ball. With the climate here, there is no choice but to put on a raincoat on the Poppy and myself - and I even have rain pants. She is less keen about walking in the rain, but if we don't , she gets into a lot of mischief in the house. Like Ari, she is reluctant to go outside to do her business - but eventually when she must, she will. We have a small dog door that she can go in and out of on her own, but she prefers that we come and stand with her in our backyard! ;) Today was lovely - once a week we have a dog walker for Poppy, to make sure she is well socialized and also to give ourselves a break once a week from the daytime walk. Lovely day!

96karenmarie
Feb 5, 2016, 10:57am Top

I'm glad that Ari's eye is healing, Anita. I have kitties, not dogs, but feel the same anxiety and love when something is wrong.

I'm glad you're doing so much reading - it's interesting to read your reviews.

Happy weekend!

97FAMeulstee
Feb 5, 2016, 4:15pm Top

>95 vancouverdeb: hi Deb,
Ari (our 5 year old Pekingese) loves all weather he will never miss a walk, no raincoat needed, a towel to dry is good enough. He loves to get attention and for him every walk is an opportunity to meet people who will talk to him & some petting is appriciated too!
Chimay (our 11 year old smooth Chow Chow) hates to get wet, so she is the one skipping walks when it is wet. After some years she is finally used to a raincoat and now we don't have to drag her out once a day at rainy days...
Poppy is lucky to have a dog walker, I have thought about that, but Chimay won't go anywhere with someone other than Frank or me, so we will have to walk her ourselves.

>96 karenmarie: Yes Karen, it is hard when something is wrong with our pets...
Reading goes well and I am very happy with that!

98Ameise1
Feb 6, 2016, 6:55am Top

Happy weekend, Anita.

99msf59
Feb 6, 2016, 6:59am Top

Happy Saturday, Anita! Just checking in. I hope your books are treating you well.

100FAMeulstee
Edited: Feb 6, 2016, 10:41am Top

>98 Ameise1: Thank you Barbara and the same to you, Ari would be happy there, he LOVES snow :-)

>99 msf59: The same to you Mark, today Winterdance arrived & I just finished The Wild Rose, so everthing is great in the book department :-)
Oh and in case you missed my answer in vancouverdeb's thread: Chimay was named after the Belgian beer (or the abbey). She was born at our place, the last born of 7 pups in our 3rd litter (2004).

101FAMeulstee
Edited: Feb 14, 2016, 8:16am Top


book 7: De wilde roos by Jennifer Donnelly
from the library, historic romance, translated (original title The Wild Rose, 3rd book from 3 The Tea Rose)

We find the Finnegan/Bristow family at the break of WW I in London, where sufragettes still demand equal rights. The youngest, Seamus, is now a well known explorer after his travels to the South pole. He can't forget his first love Willa Alden, but marries Jennie, a vicars daughter from London.
Willa comes back to London for her fathers funeral, but leaves soon after to Arabia, where she meets the famous Lawrence of Arabia.
Then the World War breaks out and all have a hard time, no one escapes this time whitout being hurt.

Again very good romantic historical fiction (with a tad of espionage, politics and geography), it was so hard to put the book down!
I could not sleep last night before I finished the last 200 pages...
I think this is the best of the 3 books so:

4 stars

102vancouverdeb
Edited: Feb 6, 2016, 5:40pm Top

We've never had a dog walker in the past, Anita, but Poppy was such a fearful dog , that after 7 months we decided to try with a dog walker once a week to improve her socialization skills . She was a rescue from California , and when we got her , she shook at everything and would nip and bite us over most everything. We had to get in a very expensive trainer /dog psychologist to help us better understand and help Poppy. Several times while out with Poppy we ran into our now dog walker , as she was out walking her group of dogs. Poppy really took to her, so she has been a real blessing to Poppy and Dave and me. Because she is such an anxious dog, we could never board her anywhere, except that she really loves her dog walker, so onthe rare occasions that we go away, our dog walker will take her for a weekend or whatever and treats Poppy like a Princess. We did have to try a couple of dog walkers until we found our very patient and reliable Isabel.

Great dog names - Chimay and Ari! Oh wow, you have lots of experience with dogs , as a breeder.

4.5 stars for De Wilde roos. So glad that you enjoyed! : )

103AMQS
Feb 7, 2016, 1:38am Top

Hi Anita! Hope you're having a lovely weekend.

104Deern
Feb 7, 2016, 10:51am Top

I'm so glad that Ari's eye is getting better! Happy Sunday to you all! :)

105FAMeulstee
Feb 7, 2016, 11:25am Top

>102 vancouverdeb: Some dogs have big issues, I am glad you did not give up on her and got a trainer for her and found her a dogwalker :-)
Thank you, we always think a lot before naming our dogs.
We haven't bred much, 5 litters of Chow Chows in 12 years. Chimay will probably be our last Chow Chow, she is very strong and I am not as strong as I used to be, so no more litters, as I can't think of any other breed I'd like so much that I would want to breed...

>103 AMQS: Thanks Anne, having a good weekend so far :-)
As I don't work anymore and Frank only works two nights a week (sometimes weekends) the weekend hasn't that feeling as it used to have way back when I was working...

>104 Deern: So are we Nathalie, happy Sunday to you too!

106karenmarie
Feb 9, 2016, 2:10pm Top

Hi Anita! Apropos AMQS and the weekend - a friend told me that weekends and holidays didn't have the same feeling any more, and the more retirees I speak with, the more I hear it.

Happy reading!

107LovingLit
Feb 9, 2016, 3:45pm Top

>106 karenmarie: I kind of felt that way for a while. Weekends mean my lovely other is home, but it never means a restful or relaxing time. Not with my two crazy boys anyway!

108LizzieD
Feb 9, 2016, 4:21pm Top

Ah, retirement! As far as I'm concerned, every day is Saturday except Sunday, which is itself, and life is one long weekend. I'm happy to trade that for the bittersweetness of a short weekend!
"Slecht" ---- The first thing I thought of was my long-ago German semester where in the first dialogue, somebody says of the baby (pardon my spelling, please), "Ehr ist ein bischen schlect," which I remember as "cross-eyed." Not the same word, I presume!!!!!!

109FAMeulstee
Feb 9, 2016, 6:10pm Top

>106 karenmarie: >107 LovingLit: & >108 LizzieD: Hi Karen, Megan & Peggy
For nearly 12 years Frank and I were both not working, weekends were busy as our social life was happening in the weekends ;-)

>108 LizzieD: In Dutch slecht means bad, Peggy, and the boy in the book is bad, irresponsible & totally spoiled...

110Deern
Feb 10, 2016, 7:10am Top

>108 LizzieD: I'd understand that as "she's feeling a bit nauseous". You can use "schlecht" in so many contexts. "Ich bin schlecht" means "I'm bad" , in the more passive form "mir ist schlecht" it's nausea. In the "bad" sense the weather can be schlecht, humor as well, and also conscience, and sight, too.

>105 FAMeulstee: I'd be happy to trade that special weekend feeling in for a permanent weekend - but with the money of course! :)

111msf59
Feb 10, 2016, 7:28am Top

Happy Wednesday, Anita! My "keeper" copy of Winterdance arrived yesterday and my wife snagged it immediately. I better not tell my daughter...

Hope the week is going well.

112FAMeulstee
Feb 10, 2016, 1:13pm Top

>110 Deern: with the money of course! and that is always the problem Nathalie ;-)
Still waiting for the day we win the lottery!

>111 msf59: Thanks Mark, always good when a book is actually read, hope your wife & daughter enjoy it too :-)
The week is going well, enjoying my fantasy book Daugther of the Forest so much!

113michigantrumpet
Feb 10, 2016, 7:14pm Top

>105 FAMeulstee: Looking forward to having every day = weekend! Alas, retirement is still a tiny speck in the eye of the future...

114streamsong
Edited: Feb 11, 2016, 10:22am Top

>112 FAMeulstee: and of course, if you win, you'll share it with all your good LT friends, right?

Is Ari's eye still doing well?

115ctpress
Feb 11, 2016, 12:56pm Top

#59 - I agree Count of Monte Cristo is one of my favorites. And there's also some good film/tv-versions to explore when one wants to revisit the story.

116FAMeulstee
Feb 11, 2016, 3:00pm Top

>113 michigantrumpet: It wears off Marianne, every day = weekend makes eventually every day = every day ;-)
My very early retirement was because of mental illness, deep depression & phobias made me housebound, but I am doing rather well lately.

>114 streamsong: I fear that depends on how much I win, Janet ;-)
Yes Ari's eye is still doing well, we were at the vet for Chimay on Monday, she had a bit more trouble getting up lately, the vet took time to look at Ari's eye and she was pleased.

>115 ctpress: Thanks Carsten, the images in my head were from the tv-series from the seventies.

117FAMeulstee
Edited: Mar 4, 2016, 1:13pm Top


book 8: Dochter van het woud by Juliet Marillier
from the library, historic fantasy, translated (original title Daughter of the Forest, 1st book from 6 The Sevenwaters series)

Sorcha grows up with her 6 brothers at Sevenwaters (Ireland). Their mother died when Sorcha was born and their father is mostly away fighting battles against the Britts. But one day their father returns with his soon wife to be and she is a wicked stephmother she enchantes the 6 brothers and Socha is the only one left to save her brothers...
There is some violence, Sorcha's journey isn't easy and she is scarred on the way.

Such a great read! Recommended!

4 1/2 stars

118PaulCranswick
Feb 12, 2016, 11:23pm Top

Have a lovely weekend, Anita. xx

119FAMeulstee
Feb 13, 2016, 11:17am Top

>118 PaulCranswick: thank you Paul, the same to you :-)

120FAMeulstee
Edited: Feb 20, 2016, 10:32am Top


book 9: En ook weemoedigheid by J.J. Voskuil
own, Dutch literature, 5th book from 7 Het Bureau

When the books of "Het Bureau" were published in the 90s, it was a real hype, people in line for bookshops to get their copy of the next instalment of the series.

I started to read the series in 2012, but could not continue because I could not read... I am so happy to read on now!

Maarten still works at the institute for Ethnology, now called after the first head of the institute A.P. Beerta. He is head of his departement and tries to implement democracy on the workfloor. For some of his co-workers it is difficult to have an opinion on anything...
Meanwhile his research is put on hold as he has too many other duties, he replaces the director when he is away, has to speak on conferences in Germany and France, has to guide his co-workers...
Voskuils observations of office life are life-like and written down with irony, wich makes me want to read the next book.

For my German reading friends the books are (being) translated into German, they even have a Facebook page!

4 1/2 stars

121msf59
Feb 14, 2016, 8:40am Top

Happy Sunday, Anita! Daughter of the Forest sounds like a good one. I will keep it in mind.

My current fantasy/dystopian book, The Girl with All the Gifts has also been a lot of fun. Have you read that one?

122FAMeulstee
Feb 14, 2016, 11:10am Top

>121 msf59: Happy Sunday to you too, Mark!

Thanks for the tip! I looked at the reviews of The girl with all the gifts, sounds like a good book to me, so I added it to my list of books I intend to get from the library.

123kidzdoc
Feb 14, 2016, 1:31pm Top

Happy Sunday, Anita!

124FAMeulstee
Feb 16, 2016, 6:19am Top

>123 kidzdoc: thank you Darryl

Update on Ari & me:
Ari's eye is doing good, the hole is closing and now it has transformed to a slight dent :-)
My arm keeps improving and I was able to drive the car for 25 km!
Can touch the top of my head, another milestone... slowly picking up some housholding like vacuming & putting the new books on their right place in the shelves (I order alphabetical, so have to move all books from the starting point).

125FAMeulstee
Edited: Feb 16, 2016, 6:26am Top

And again, reading from the library ended in buying books :-)

After I read Daughter of the Forest I wanted to read the next books, but the library did not have book 2 and 3... so looked online and found pristine copies of all 3, so today 3 books entered my house:

Dochter van het woud Dutch translation of Daughter of the Forest, by Juliet Marillier
Zoon van de schaduwen Dutch translation of (Son of the Shadows), by Juliet Marillier
Kind van de profetie Dutch translation of (Child of the Prophecy), by Juliet Marillier

total books aquired: 8

126msf59
Feb 16, 2016, 6:53am Top

It looks like you like this series, Anita. Grins...enjoy!

127Ameise1
Feb 16, 2016, 8:36am Top

>124 FAMeulstee: Great news, Anita.

128FAMeulstee
Feb 16, 2016, 10:06am Top

>126 msf59: Does it show, Mark ;-)

>127 Ameise1: Barbara, it is so good to share some happy news!

129ronincats
Feb 17, 2016, 11:07pm Top

Great news about both Ari and your arm, Anita!

130FAMeulstee
Feb 18, 2016, 11:12am Top

>129 ronincats: Thanks Roni!
One more row to go in the bookcases in the livingroom, the one at the bottom. Somehow there are a lot of doghairs there to remove ;-)

131PaulCranswick
Feb 19, 2016, 7:20pm Top

Glad to see that news is positive on the health front, Anita.

Have a lovely weekend.

132FAMeulstee
Feb 20, 2016, 10:15am Top

>131 PaulCranswick: Thank you Paul.

I have a lonely weekend because Frank went to Rotterdam Friday for his monthly visit to his aunt and some free time, he will be back tomorrow.
He really needed a break after 4 months taking care of me ;-)

133msf59
Feb 20, 2016, 10:19am Top

Happy Saturday, Anita! Don't be lonely! Surround yourself with books. That will give you comfort.

My wife is gone, until tomorrow afternoon too and that is what I am going to do.

134FAMeulstee
Edited: Feb 20, 2016, 10:37am Top


book 10: Afgang by J.J. Voskuil
own, Dutch literature, 6th book from 7 Het Bureau

In this book we follow the last years of Maarten Koning working at the institute for Ethnology. In 1987 he chooses for early retirement.
He attends the big demonstration against cruise-missiles in 1983 (I was ther too, it was the largest protest ever in our county, where more than half a milion people gathered).
His mother in law and his former boss, Anton Beerta, both die.

For my German reading friends the books are (being) translated into German, they even have a Facebook page!

4 1/2 stars

135FAMeulstee
Feb 20, 2016, 10:36am Top

And now, what to read next?

The last (7th) book from Het Bureau?
But I hesitate to say goodbye to Maarten Koning...

Or something lighter like the 2nd book of the Sevenwaters series?

Decisions, decisions.... ;-)

136FAMeulstee
Feb 20, 2016, 10:40am Top

>133 msf59: Thanks Mark, never complete lonely with two dogs :-)
Can't decide what to read next....

So first I am going to walk the dogs and then warm & eat my dinner, then see what I am going to read.

137Ameise1
Feb 20, 2016, 1:00pm Top

Happy weekend, Anita.

138FAMeulstee
Feb 20, 2016, 4:47pm Top

>137 Ameise1: Thank you Barbara, the same to you, I hope your weather is nice :-)

Decided to go on with book 7 De dood van Maarten Koning the last book of Het Bureau, it is a short one, only 226 pages...

139banjo123
Feb 20, 2016, 4:55pm Top

Happy weekend! Glad that you are doing well, and Ari's eye is getting better.

140FAMeulstee
Feb 21, 2016, 1:08pm Top

>139 banjo123: Thanks Rhonda, My husband (Frank) came home this afternoon, so everybody is happy, our pack is complete again ;-)

141karenmarie
Feb 21, 2016, 1:55pm Top

#135 Hi Anita! It's always fun to comtemplate the new book. It sounds like Ari is on the mend and that you are accomplishing new things every day. Congratulations.

142FAMeulstee
Feb 22, 2016, 1:02pm Top

>141 karenmarie: Thanks Karen!
There is now only a big blue dot left on Ari's eye, so I think we will go to the vet next week to see if we can stop with the eyedrops :-)
I have a small setback, did a bit too much when Frank was away.

I almost finished De dood van Maarten Koning.

Bought an other e-book, the Dutch translation of The tale of Genji, over 1300 pages so very good it is an e-book :-) AND for a very low price, the hardcover costs 395 euro and the e-book only 16,99 :-D

143ctpress
Feb 22, 2016, 1:49pm Top

1300 pages - wow - it's like War and Peace....but thank God for e-books! That is some saving....I guess it's the same as in Denmark. The translations are sometimes ridiculously expensive.

144FAMeulstee
Feb 22, 2016, 2:10pm Top

>143 ctpress: Translations can be expensive, Carsten, but then, it is a lot of work for the translator and the publisher & the writer have to get their part of the revenue...
Translations into Danish or Dutch won't sell millions, so I think we should be glad some books do get translated in our language :-)

145FAMeulstee
Feb 22, 2016, 3:41pm Top


book 11: De dood van Maarten Koning by J.J. Voskuil
own, Dutch literature, 7th book from 7 Het Bureau

After Maarten Koning left the institute for Ethnology, he tries to keep in touch with his former employees. But he is not wanted there anymore and everything he stood for in his career is broken down.
His wife, Nicolien, has a hard time adjusting to the new sitiation whith them both at home all days. They go more often walking and biking together.
The title, transtated it would be The death of Maarten Koning, is peculiar, as it is an autobiography, one can't write about his own death! But it referrs to a dream, which is the last scene of the book.

For my German reading friends the books are (being) translated into German, they even have a Facebook page.

4 1/2 stars

146FAMeulstee
Edited: Feb 29, 2016, 2:09pm Top


book 12: Zoon van de schaduwen by Juliet Marillier
own, fanatsy, original title Son of the Shadows, 2nd book from 6 Sevenwaters

The story of Sorcha's daughter Liaden. She is a healer, like her mother was, and grows up at Sevenwaters.
One day she is kidnapped by outlaws, to help one of them. She can't safe the man, but fals in love with their leader. They both know their love has no future, so Liaden returns home alone.
When Liadens life is in danger the leader of the outlaws ties to help, but the enemy is not easy defeated.

Again a very good read! Recommended!

4 stars

Now reading book 3 Child of the Prophecy

147FAMeulstee
Mar 4, 2016, 1:28pm Top


book 13: Kind van de profetie by Juliet Marillier
own, fanatsy, original title Child of the Prophecy, 3rd book from 6 Sevenwaters

The story of Fainne, daughter out of the forbidden relation between Niamh and Ciarán. She grows up with her father, without her mother, at the shores of Kerry. One day her grandmother, Lady Oonagh, comes to teach her the things her father can't teach her. Her grandmother wants to use Fainne in evil ways, like she did in the first book... She wants that the prophecy will fail.

A bit more difficult to read, as in the first half there is a lot of evil around, that makes it a more depressing read. But all comes together at the end, so I did enjoy it at the end, but not as much as the previous books.

3 1/2 stars

148FAMeulstee
Edited: Mar 4, 2016, 6:24pm Top

Haven't been very active on others threads the last two weeks... I have not been in a very good mood, nearly slipping into depression.
Even Frank was not his stable self, the past four months are weighing for him too, so we even started to quarrel :-(
My choice of books wasn't very helpfull either as both De dood van Maarten Koning and Child of the prophecy were not uplifting books.

So we thought it would be good to do something else and visit the big Hieronymus Bosch exhibition. Luckely we checked the website before we left, as all tickets were sold out!
We have tickets now for April 14th....

In The Hague there is an other exhibition we would like to see, Karel Appel, an artist we both love. But my parents live there and we can't go to The Hague and not visit...


We both enjoyed the exposition, more pictures at my FB-account, the album is public, so everyone can see ;-)

Then a short visit to my parents, and nearly all positive energy I gained from the exhibition was gone. But I do feel a little better, not much, but enough for now.

I hope to catch up with other threads next week.

149ronincats
Mar 4, 2016, 2:34pm Top

Sending you hugs and a whole boatload of positive energy, Anita!

150charl08
Mar 4, 2016, 6:19pm Top

>148 FAMeulstee: Sorry to hear you're feeling 'under the weather'. Your art gallery visit looks fascinating. I'd read about the Bosch exhibit - I look forward to reading what you think about it.

151Ameise1
Mar 5, 2016, 6:18am Top

Happy weekend, Anita and feel better soon.

152FAMeulstee
Mar 6, 2016, 6:21am Top

>149 ronincats: Thank you Roni, I need it :-)

>150 charl08: Hi Charlotte, Bosch is a facinating painter, one of very few painters I like beside the modern, mostly abstract painters I love. I will share my thoughts next month, and pictures, if it is allowed to take them.

>151 Ameise1: Thanks Barbara, it looks like it was just a little dip. But since I stopped with my anti-depressants I am more aware of any sign that could forewarn a depression.
That will wear off, I hope.

153FAMeulstee
Edited: Mar 13, 2016, 4:55pm Top


book 14: Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod by Gary Paulsen
own, English, non-fiction, dogsledding, Iditarod

This book was recommended by Mark (msf59), Joe (jnwelch) liked it too and they were right!
I did not realize it when I started the book, but yesterday (when I finished the book) the Iditarod 2016 started, a timely read :-)

There was no translation available, so I read it in English, did go rather well & fast. Sometimes reading books in English is a struggle, but this one I read almost like a book in Dutch.

In the 80s Gary Paulsen competed in the Iditarod. In this book he describes the time before that, when he became interested in dogsledding and the event itself: more than 17 days in cold, ice and snow together with his dogs.
He writes with lots of humor & wit, he can laugh about his own disasters. The Iditarod turns out to be a great adventure, with some grim, almost deadly turns...

4 1/2 stars

154kidzdoc
Mar 6, 2016, 9:15am Top

Nice review of Winterdance, Anita. It does sound interesting.

155FAMeulstee
Mar 6, 2016, 12:29pm Top

>154 kidzdoc: Thank you Darryl, it is a good book!

156jnwelch
Mar 7, 2016, 12:19pm Top

I'm glad you enjoyed Winterdance, Anita. It is a good book, isn't it? I liked his ability to laugh at his own disasters, too.

157thornton37814
Mar 7, 2016, 4:31pm Top

>153 FAMeulstee: I've read a few books about the Iditatrod. I've like some better than others.

158FAMeulstee
Mar 9, 2016, 4:17pm Top

>156 jnwelch: Yes :-)

>157 thornton37814: I wouldn't survive the Iditarod, Lori, but reading about it was great. Any other books you would recommend?

159msf59
Mar 9, 2016, 9:08pm Top

Hooray for Winterdance! Glad my warbling paid off. Now, we will keep spreading the book joy.

160FAMeulstee
Mar 10, 2016, 4:55pm Top

>159 msf59: Mission accomplished, Mark ;-)

161Ameise1
Mar 12, 2016, 3:39am Top

Happy weekend, Anita.

162vancouverdeb
Mar 12, 2016, 4:24am Top

Sorry you are feeling a bit depressed, Anita. You are correct, with a dog or two or more, you are never completely lonely. Glad you enjoyed the Art Exhibit!

163streamsong
Mar 12, 2016, 4:39pm Top

At church last week, there were two different families who had family members competing in the Idatorad, and asked for prayers for 'traveling mercies'.

164PaulCranswick
Mar 13, 2016, 8:11am Top

Wishing you a wonderful and happy Sunday, Anita. xx

165Whisper1
Mar 13, 2016, 8:51am Top

I echo Paul's words. May today be lovely, and hopefully there will be time to read.

166FAMeulstee
Mar 13, 2016, 4:30pm Top

>161 Ameise1: Thank you Barbara, hope your weekend was happy too :-)

>162 vancouverdeb: Hi Deb, it is that I long for spring and being outside the house instead of inside... Seeing some art always lift my spirit!

>163 streamsong: Hi Janet, I hope none of them was in the accident with the snowscooter...

>164 PaulCranswick: Thank you Paul, good day, walked a bit with the dogs, played some games on the computere and finished a book, so yes, it was a pretty good day :-)

>165 Whisper1: What a lovely picture, Linda, yes there was time to read, finished a book, see next msg.
Hope all is well with you!

167FAMeulstee
Edited: Mar 13, 2016, 4:55pm Top


book 15: Hasse Simonsdochter by Thea Beckman
own, Dutch, YA, historical fiction, 15th century, re-read

Thea Beckman is one of my favorite writers. She wrote mainly historical fiction for young adults.

A small part of this book plays in Den Bosch and Hieronymus Bosch plays a small role in this book. As we are going to the Bosch exhibit next month, I wanted to read this book again to get the feel of that time

1477, Hasse lives near the city of Kampen, her parents never liked her and life is tough on her. One day she is nearly taken by three men, but saved by a noble man. A few days later she goes to Kampen to find the man who rescued her is to be killed in a few hours. She saves him by becoming his wife (I don't know if there is an English word for this, in Dutch it is "verbidden", a woman can take a convict as her husband and his conviction is changed into the couple being banned out of the city). Her new husband turns out to be Jan van Schaffelaar. He is a mercenary and fights against Maximilian I. Back from a lost war he settles with Hassse and his men as a highwaymen at the Veluwe.

4 stars

168vancouverdeb
Mar 13, 2016, 9:02pm Top

>167 FAMeulstee: Sounds like an interesting book ,especially since you will be seeing the Bosch Exhibit later this month. I am so pleased - when I took the dog out for her walk in the dreadful wind and pouring rain - I found my watch in one of the inner pockets :) So walking the dog was not as bad as it might have been! Such nasty weather lately. Sigh. Good thing for books. Have a wonderful evening Anita! Hugs to you .

169jnwelch
Mar 14, 2016, 9:52am Top

Can't wait to hear about the Bosch exhibit, Anita. Sounds like an interesting book to read ahead of it.

170Deern
Mar 15, 2016, 8:45am Top

Hi Anita, I'm sorry about the depression, I hope that with the arrival of spring (hopefull soon!) everything will be better again. You had quite the cold and grey and extra-long winter in the North, like my parents in Germany, I guess? Sending you positive energy and hugs!

I read about the Bosch exhibition, it's so impressive, I wish I had the opportunity to go and see it!

171charl08
Mar 15, 2016, 9:54am Top

Hi Anita just wanted to wave hello. Hope you are OK.

I had a look at the Bosch paintings in the UK - surprised to find them outside London too.

http://artuk.org/discover/artists/bosch-hieronymus-c-14501516

172FAMeulstee
Mar 15, 2016, 6:23pm Top

>168 vancouverdeb: Hugs back to you, Deb, I am glad you found your watch!

>169 jnwelch: Can't wait to see it next month, Joe!

>170 Deern: Yes, Nathalie, some spring weather would help.
It has been a strange winter, December way to warm and the next months a lot of rainy and cloudy days, no freezing weather or snow. I don't count the 2 afternoons with less than a centimeter of snow that melted within hours.
Hugs back to you :-)
I think the exposition will be sold out by now, we bought our tickets for next month two weeks ago!

>171 charl08: Thanks Charlotte for the link, I have been looking at his works online, but missed some of these.
I am allright, just longing for spring & a painfree right arm.

173PaulCranswick
Mar 19, 2016, 7:29am Top

Trust that everything is hunky-dory in the Netherlands this weekend, Anita.

Warmer and longer days and a painfree existence are heartily wished for you too.

174FAMeulstee
Mar 19, 2016, 6:21pm Top

>173 PaulCranswick: Thank you Paul, it looks like it is going to be a nice and quiet weekend, at least here at the Meulstee house ;-)

And good news, we saved enough to get airco upstairs :-)
So coming summer I will be able to sleep in my own bed, even when we have a heat wave!

175FAMeulstee
Mar 20, 2016, 12:20pm Top


book 16: Negen levens by William Dalrymple
from the library, non-fiction, religion, translated original title Nine lives, found on Barbara's (Ameise1) thread

The title refers to nine people who follow different religious ways somewhere in India.

We meet a Jain nun, a Theyyam dancer, a temple prostitute, a singer of an ancient epic, a female Sufi, a Buddhist monk, a bronze caster, a Tantric skull feeder and a blind singer.

I didn't know much a about religions in India and learned a lot from this book. The story of the Tibetan monk shocked me, how he was mislead by the Indian goverment and ended up in the army fighting not to free Tibet, but in the Bengal war in the 70s...
I was surprised that there is a very old religion in India that is atheistic and non-violent: Jainism.
Each story is touching in a diffent way.

4 1/2 stars

176charl08
Mar 20, 2016, 12:35pm Top

>175 FAMeulstee: I'm hoping to get to this soon Anita. Sounds fascinating.

177FAMeulstee
Mar 20, 2016, 12:57pm Top

Two books entered our house last Tuesday, it was Bookweek and when you buy a book in this week, you get the annual free gift Book with it. So we always go to a bookstore in this week in March :-)

Dokter Zjivago by Boris Pasternak, a new translation part of the Russische bibliotheek (Russian library) by publisher Van Oorschot
Broer by Esther Gerritsen, this years free gift book

178FAMeulstee
Mar 20, 2016, 12:58pm Top

>176 charl08: Yes it is, Charlotte, I hope you like it too.

179ronincats
Mar 20, 2016, 1:00pm Top

Wow, that's a tradition we need to export, Anita! Free books are always good, and it looks like you took good advantage of it.

180FAMeulstee
Mar 20, 2016, 1:11pm Top

>178 FAMeulstee: It should be exported all over the world, Roni!
The first Bookweek was in 1930, to promote Dutch books.

181Whisper1
Mar 20, 2016, 1:32pm Top

>175 FAMeulstee: That looks like a wonderful book! Happy Sunday to you dear Anita!

182Ameise1
Mar 20, 2016, 4:26pm Top

Finally caught up here, Anita. Sorry to hear about your depression. I hope you feel better by now.

183ctpress
Mar 21, 2016, 5:01am Top

#153 Winterdance: The Fine Madness of Running the Iditarod - great review, Anita - good to be reminded again of this one - Being able to smile at ones misfortune is a good quality. I've only read one by Paulsen The Hatchet but that can be recommended too. Also about survival in nature.

184scaifea
Mar 21, 2016, 7:02am Top

Hi, Anita! I really like the sound of Nine Lives...

185FAMeulstee
Mar 21, 2016, 10:20am Top

>181 Whisper1: Happy Mondy to you, Linda :-)
I think you would like Nine Lives too.

>182 Ameise1: Thank you Barbara, yes I do feel better, but still longing for better weather, we had a few nice days last week, but now we are back to grey, clouded and wet.

>183 ctpress: Thanks Carsten, yes it is, but even better if one can smile about own misfortune ;-)
Yes Hatchet is good too, read that one before my LT years.

>184 scaifea: Hi Amber, I hope you can squeeze it in to read :-)

186FAMeulstee
Mar 22, 2016, 12:38pm Top


book 17: Ywein, de ridder met de leeuw by Chrétien de Troyes
own, translated, French, 12th century, original title Yvain ou le chevalier au lion

The original work is in verses, the translator translated the story in nowadays Dutch prose and explains in the afterword why he choose to do so.
This is one of several Arthurian stories that Crétien de Troyes wrote in the 12th century. It is amazing how this story still stands after more than 800 years!

The knight Yweins adventures lead to marriage, quests and finding a lion. He gets separated from his wife, by his own fault, but in the end they find eachother again :-)

4 stars

187PaulCranswick
Mar 22, 2016, 1:17pm Top

Anita as you probably know I chose Dalrymple for the British Author Challenge this year and I don't recall a single negative review. Glad you liked Nine Lives so much

188FAMeulstee
Mar 22, 2016, 1:38pm Top

>187 PaulCranswick: This was the first book I read by Dalrymple, Paul, I will be looking for others :-)

189harrygbutler
Mar 22, 2016, 2:08pm Top

>186 FAMeulstee: I'm glad you liked Ywein, Anita!

190FAMeulstee
Mar 23, 2016, 1:59pm Top

>189 harrygbutler: So am I, Harry :-)

Meanwhile I am also reading The Tale of Genji, written in the 11th century in Japan. Both hierarchic societies, but sooo different!

191LovingLit
Mar 24, 2016, 2:48am Top

>186 FAMeulstee: now that book goes back a far way! 800 years is a looooong time for it to still be around and being read.

192charl08
Mar 24, 2016, 2:56am Top

I like the theme of ancient books. I thought I was reading an 'old' book having picked up The Canterbury Tales but compareD to >190 FAMeulstee: it's relatively new!

193streamsong
Mar 24, 2016, 8:27am Top

Wow! You're doing some really interesting reading. I'll be interested to see how your comments on Tale of the Genji.

194PaulCranswick
Mar 24, 2016, 11:41am Top

I am saddened to see that one of the World's greatest ever soccer players, the Dutchman, Johan Cruyff has passed away from lung cancer at a mere 68 years of age.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YU-k-Ots3iY

195FAMeulstee
Mar 24, 2016, 12:38pm Top

>194 PaulCranswick: Yes it is sad, Paul, heard the news a few hours back... lost his fight with lungcancer :-(

196FAMeulstee
Mar 24, 2016, 12:46pm Top

>191 LovingLit: Yes it is Megan, and still very readable!
Should I already send you off? ;-)

>192 charl08: It was just coincidence Charlotte. There are more ancient books still read like Ilias and Odyssee and other ancient Greek and Roman writers, so we can easely go further back!

>193 streamsong: That will take a while Janet, it is 1315 pages (!) and I read it slow. But I do like what I have read so far.

197FAMeulstee
Mar 24, 2016, 12:56pm Top


book 18: De jongen die met piranha's zwom by David Almond
found on Ambers (scaifea) thread, from the library, childrens lit, translated, English, original title The Boy Who Swam with Piranhas

David Almond is one of my favorite childrens & YA writers.
Again a magical story by David Almond about a boy who runs away from home and ends up with a traveling fair.
A light, lovely and lighthearted story, compared to his darker YA novels.

4 1/2 stars

198thornton37814
Mar 24, 2016, 9:29pm Top

>157 thornton37814: I remember reading the Sue Henry book Murder on the Iditarod Trail. I think I read another of Paulsen's books also.

199PaulCranswick
Mar 24, 2016, 10:37pm Top

Have a wonderful Easter.



200Ameise1
Mar 25, 2016, 5:09am Top

Anita, I wish you a fabulous weekend.

201FAMeulstee
Mar 25, 2016, 4:50pm Top

>198 thornton37814: Thanks Lori!

>199 PaulCranswick: And the same to you, Paul.

>200 Ameise1: I wish you the same Barbara.

202msf59
Mar 25, 2016, 6:32pm Top

Happy Friday, Anita! Have a great weekend. I hope you spend plenty of time with the books.

203avatiakh
Mar 26, 2016, 1:20am Top

>167 FAMeulstee: Hi Anita. I'd love to read more Thea Beckman, unfortunately only one seems to have made it to English.

204FAMeulstee
Mar 26, 2016, 8:17am Top

>202 msf59: Thanks Mark, happy weekend to you too, I am currently enjoying The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith :-)

>203 avatiakh: Maybe one day others will be translated, Kerry, as she is my favorite Dutch historical YA writer. And maybe regular mentioning here helps ;-)

205Whisper1
Edited: Mar 26, 2016, 8:32am Top

>197 FAMeulstee: You may remember that you are the one who introduced me to David Almond and his books! Thanks again for this.

First, I want to say how saddened I am that once again that nasty plague depression is rearing its head again. I do hope that your spirits are sun shiny soon. My heart goes out to you. You are such an intelligent, caring, loving soul!

All good wishes for a restful, kind weekend



206jnwelch
Mar 26, 2016, 3:14pm Top

Happy Easter, Anita!

207scaifea
Mar 27, 2016, 9:30am Top

>197 FAMeulstee: Oh, yay! I'm so glad you liked this one! I need to find more of Almond's stuff - he's wonderful.

208FAMeulstee
Mar 27, 2016, 12:34pm Top

>205 Whisper1: Oh yes Linda, I do remember :-)
It is not full blown depression, just a little down as I am longing for Spring to come... When the warmer weather comes I will feel a lot better. Even the two somewhat warmer and sunny days we had in the last two weeks helped!

Wishing you the same.

>206 jnwelch: Happy Easter to you too Joe :-)

>207 scaifea: Yes Amber David Almond is wonderfull, I gave most of his books 5 stars, and never less than 4 stars, I higly recommend his books!

209FAMeulstee
Mar 27, 2016, 12:56pm Top


book 19: Koekoeksjong by Robert Galbraith
from the library, detective, translated, English, original title The Cuckoo's Calling, seen on various threads this year Barbara (Ameise), Amber (scaifea), Karen (karenmarie)

Enjoyed this murder mystery a lot. Cormoran Strike is a admirable character and I want to read more about him & the mysteries he unraffles.
So I hope to find book 2 at the next visit to the library :-)

4 stars

210Deern
Mar 27, 2016, 3:14pm Top

Happy Easter Anita, Frank, Chimay and Ari! :)

I have such fond memories of Nine Lives, so glad you liked it as well!

211FAMeulstee
Edited: Mar 29, 2016, 4:39pm Top

>210 Deern: (a belated) thank you, Nathalie!
Yes, Nine Lives was a very good read.

212charl08
Edited: Mar 29, 2016, 5:34pm Top

>209 FAMeulstee: I'm a fan too. Hope you enjoy the rest of the series.

213FAMeulstee
Mar 30, 2016, 1:41pm Top

>212 charl08: Will know soon, the 2 next are available at the library :-)

214FAMeulstee
Mar 30, 2016, 1:43pm Top

Sorry, will try tomorrow to catch up with the threads... my laptop died, have new one up and running now, but it takes a lot of time to get everything I use back on this one.

215karenmarie
Mar 30, 2016, 3:53pm Top

I'm so glad you liked The Cuckoo's Calling, Anita! I finished listening to it recently and am now in the process of listening to The Silkworm now - read it when it first came out and loved it, found both audiobooks at our local Friends of the Library Sale - and am remembering just what a good writer Galbraith/Rowling is.

Good luck getting the new laptop going.

216Ameise1
Apr 2, 2016, 6:06am Top

Hi Anita. I loved The Cuckoo's Calling and Nine Lives. Glad to hear that you enjoyed them too. Wishing you a relaxed weekend.

217FAMeulstee
Apr 4, 2016, 10:18am Top

>215 karenmarie: Hi Karen, yes Rowling/Gailbraith is a great writer, I hope she'll write many more :-)

>216 Ameise1: Thanks Barbara, weekend is over, but thanks anyhow ;-)

New laptop did not go well :-(
Now I have the next one, much better!
It is all up and running now *sigh*

218FAMeulstee
Apr 4, 2016, 10:31am Top


book 20: De stem van Tamar by David Grossman
from the library, translated, Hebrew, friendship, family, music, drugs, English title Someone to Run With, found on Kerry's (avatiakh) thread

Assaf has a job for the summer. One day his boss takes him down to the kennels, where a dog is franticly barking. His boss tells him to take the dog and find its owner. Assaf and the dog, called Dina, find many friends of the owner, who is a girl named Tamar. Assaf finds out Tamar is in danger and tries more than his best to find her in time.

4 stars

219Ameise1
Apr 4, 2016, 11:07am Top

>217 FAMeulstee: Glad to hear that your newest laptop works fine.

220FAMeulstee
Edited: Jul 1, 2016, 9:24am Top

>219 Ameise1: thank you Barbara, a big relief!
Now I try to catch up with the threads ;-)

Wrap up first 3 months:

20 books read
11 books aquired

best read De graaf van Monte-Cristo by Alexandre Dumas, 5 stars

Group: 75 Books Challenge for 2016

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