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Moving Right Along in 2017 - Q1 (Storeetllr/Mary)

75 Books Challenge for 2017

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Edited: Mar 29, 6:05pm Top

Hi! Happy New Year!

I'm Mary, a retired transplant from Southern California now living in a Denver suburb with my sister and two parrots. I'll be moving soon, getting a place of my own - well, me and the birds - and in the meantime am working to purge the excess stuff I own, something I've been trying to do for a decade at least. This time, this year, this move, I am determined to succeed!

Toward that end, I've donated about 300 of my books, many of them "classics" from the 60s, 70s, and 80s in various genres including mystery, scifi, fantasy, and romance.

I found a rental on the southwest side of Pueblo, not far from Pueblo Community College, City Park, the zoo, and the State Fairgrounds. It's an old neighborhood of houses mostly built in the 60s, and looks like it. I take over the lease on April 15, and the lease at my current place ends April 30, so I'll have a couple of weeks to get things moved and organized in my new place and get things cleaned up in my old place, which makes me happy.

Edited: Mar 29, 6:13pm Top

Books Read in 2017


1. The Fall of the House of Cabal by Jonathan L. Howard. 4.5. Audio. Comic steampunk horror. Latest (and, perhaps, last?) of the Johannes Cabal, Necromancer books. Review here: >40

2. Confessions of Young Nero by Margaret George. 3.5 stars. First-to-Read digital ARC. Historical fiction. Review here: >46

3. Cast in Flight by Michelle Sagara. 3.5 stars. Audio. Latest in the Elantra Chronicles. This was both better than the ones that came before and more of the same: better because Kaylin isn't nearly as annoying as in earlier books; same old-same old because she still lets herself be treated contemptuously by almost everyone she knows, except maybe Severin, still treats others much the same (I especially don't like the way she disparages her familiar), and she still acts like she has no idea what's happening most of the time and doesn't want to learn unless she has to. As the Emperor told her: "In the words of Lord Diarmat, you are dangerously self-indulgent and lazy when it comes to things outside the purview of the Hawks. You do not understand that proper behavior is a job." Oh, yes, and she says, "But..." much too often. I am not as enamoured of the Aerians as Kaylin is, and their behavior with regard to the Praevolo (sp?) proved completely unreasoning to me, esp. the part with The Outcast Dragon. There was not enough Nightshade - and what there was was spent arguing with his brother - and no Temaris, though Mandorin proved diverting, and the scene of the dinner party with the Emperor gave me a chuckle or two.

4. Unexpected Stories by Octavia Butler. 4 stars. Novella about a group of otherwise decent people whose need causes them to embark on the enslavement and torture of one whose very difference is crucial to their survival and short story about a PSI woman of color who finds pre-PSI children of color and trains them, pitting them against the white PSI establishment. Thought-provoking, as is all Butler's work.

5. Thrice the Brinded Cat by Alan Bradley. 4 stars. Flavia is growing up, and life at Buckthorn is changing. I hated the ending - didn't cry, but I went to sleep depressed thinking of it and woke the same way.

6. Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. Reread. I needed a comfort read, what with the looming inauguration and the end of an era of relative peace and prosperity, and I came across this in my browsings. I'd already read it, and knew it wasn't a difficult read, so I decided to see if it would do the trick. It did, and I think I enjoyed it more the second time around. Perhaps because I've read the subsequent books and know wherethe series has gone so could see all the foreshadowings.

7. Archangel's Kiss by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. Reread. Still feeling the need for comfort reading. I read this one before, but I had forgotten a lot of it, so it was almost like the first time for me. I'm hoping after 11/21, I won't need so much comfort reading and can get back to my more substantive reads.

8. Archangel's Consort by Nalini Singh. 4 stars Audio. Reread. I've enjoyed this series of comfort rereads. It was a nice break. Today I'm going back to my regularly scheduled reading. (ETA: I lied. It probably won't be until next Monday - after the horror of Friday's inaugurination and Saturday's Women's March and Sunday's volunteering at the bird rescue.)

9. Archangel's Blade by Nalini Singh. 3.5 stars. Audio. Dmitri's story. Not my favorite but still good. It's another reread I remembered very little of the story.

10. Archangel's Storm by Nalini Singh. 3.5 Stars. Audio. Jason's story. Another not-my-favorite but good enough.

11. Archangel's Legion by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. Back to Raphael and Elena. Angels fall from the sky, vamps get the plague, and Lijuan chooses that time to attack NYC. Then comes the ultimate deux ex machina.

12. Archangel's Shadows by Nalini Singh. 3.75 stars. Audio. Ash's and Janvier's story. An angelic drug that shouldn't be, dried-to-a-husk bodies turning up around the city, blood-lust on the cusp of erupting, Elena's block party.

13. Archangel's Enigma by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. Naasir's story. I like Naasir a lot.

14. Archangel's Heart by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. The Archangels of the Cadre are summoned by the Luminata to a meeting, and Raphael and Elena, along with Aidan, travel to the Luminata compound in Morocco where Elena confronts her lost past and the Archangels confront an evil lurking in the shadows.

15. Angel's Pawn by Nalini Singh. 3.5 stars. Novelette. A brand-new vampire from a ruling vampire family has been kidnapped by a rival vampire, and her angel - the cruel and inhuman Nazarach - wants Ash and Janvier to retrieve her.

16. Death's Rival by Faith Hunter. 3.5 stars. Vampires are catching the plague and having their territories taken from them, and it turns out the old vamp - a Naturaliza, who believes in taking what he wants without regard to Vampiric Law - is doing it because Jane Yellowstone killed his Enforcer when he had crept into her hotel room carrying a gun with a silencer on it in the last novel. I like these, for the most part, but I'm getting really tired of Jane feeling guilt over things she did not do or did only because she had to to save her or another's life. Also tired of her lusting over every hunky man she meets. I know it's Beast's nature, but I thought cats - even pumas - weren't always in heat. Give it a rest, Faith. It's getting a bit much, especially when she stops to lock lips with one of said men in the middle of a pitched battle.

And, the last book of the month, and the best:

17. March: Book Three by John Lewis. 5 stars. GN. OMG. Best of the three, and that's saying a lot. If I could, I'd give it a 6 or 7 (or 10) star rating. Must read, especially with what's going on today. Rep. Lewis must be anguished to think his and his brothers' and sisters' sacrifices might have been in vain.


18. Written in Red by Anne Bishop. 4.5 stars. Audio. Reread. Still feeling the need for comfort reads. Here's one where the greedy hate-filled vicious and violent humans get killed in gruesome and imaginative ways. This is a world I would like to live in.

19. Murder of Crows by Anne Bishop. 4 stars. Kindle. Reread.

20. Vision in Silver by Anne Bishop. 4 stars. Kindle. Reread.

21. Marked in Flesh by Anne Bishop. 4 stars. Audio. Reread.

(I reread the Courtyard (aka The Others) series in anticipation of the release of the fifth in the series - Etched in Bone - which I PREORDERED!!! from Audible because I absolutely adore this fantasy series and can't wait to get my hands on it. Yeah, it's not perfect, but it is so pleasurable to read about this world and the characters who reside in it. While I'm reading, I sometimes fantasize that this is reality and that the Terra Indigine have gone all Elders on T***p and his evil cohorts, or that Tess traps them in a dimly lit dead-end alley and lets them try - just TRY - to grab her by the p*ssy. Ah, either way the visual is so very satisfying, and a wonderful way to de-stress at least for a few minutes.)

22. When All the Girls Have Gone by Jayne Ann Krentz. 3.75 stars. I like the way Krentz writes under her real name and all her pseudonyms, and this romantic thriller is no exception. I like her characters (even if every protagonist is, deep down, much the same as every other, perhaps because there is always a deep down and a good back story that doesn't strain credulity too much) and her stories. Anyway, in this one, Charlotte's stepsister has gone missing, and Max is the P.I. who investigates. Both are damaged souls with resilient hearts who help each other be the best they can be and win against the villains. Only a few inconsistencies in plot kept me from giving this a 4 star rating.

23. The Crystal Cave by Mary Stewart. 4.5 stars. Audio. I read this interpretation of the Arthurian myth back in the 80s and have been wanting to reread it. When I saw my library had the books on audio, I jumped at the chance to read them that way, because even though I have all the books (paperback and hardcover) on my shelves, my eyes have trouble with small text, and I also thought it would be lovely to have the story told to me the way bards told stories back in the Dark Ages. Anyway, I remembered a lot of the story, misremembered some of it, and found I had completely forgotten parts of it, but what remains true is how much I enjoyed it! Reread.

24. Sparrow Hill Road by Seanan McGuire. 4 stars. Audio. I figured I'd enjoy this, since Roni recommended it, but she did warn that it's not the best McGuire (a new-to-me author) and that it's a series of short stories all centered around the same character, so I was surprised by how much I liked it. Rose Marshall was killed in a car "accident" one night in 1952 when she was 16 years old and on her way to confront her prom date who apparently had stood her up. These tell of her adventures as the ghostly Phantom Prom Date or the Girl in the Diner.

25. The Hollow Hills by Mary Stewart. 3.75 stars. Audio. Reread.

26. Hunting Ground by Patricia Briggs. 3.75 stars. Audio. Reread.

27. Shards of Honor by Lois McMaster Bujold. 4 stars. Audio. Reread.
28. Barrayar by Lois McMaster Bujold. 4 stars. Audio. Reread
29. Warrior's Apprentice by Lois McMaster Bujold. 4 stars. Audio. Reread.
(I seem to be rereading the Vorkosigan series! It wasn't on purpose. I just fell into it. Even better the second time around.)

30. The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein. 5 stars. Yes, it's a bit melodramatic, with over-the-top villains, and the dog is maybe a bit too human-thinking to be realistic, but I really enjoyed this novel, where car racing is a metaphor for life and nice people who are beaten down by life (and villains) can, though determination, prevail.

31. The Vor Game by Lois McMaster Bujold. 4 stars. Audio. Reread. I enjoyed this novel about Miles' and Gregor's adventures quite a bit more than I did the first time around.

32. Making Space by Thich Nhat Hanh. 4 stars. Audio. Calming. I think I need to buy this audio to listen to in these ultra-stressful times.

33. Echoes in Death by J. D. Robb. 3.5 stars. Kindle. Latest Eve Dallas/Roarke mystery. I enjoyed it, though I didn't think it was the best of the series. Not sure why. It grabbed me right from the start, and I gobbled it up like I do all the In Death novels, but it rang a bit flat for me, notwithstanding all the violence. Also, TRIGGER WARNING.

34. Cetaganda by Lois McMaster Bujold. 3.5 stars. Reread. Funny, I enjoyed this one a bit less than I remember enjoying it on first read. Felt it dragged a bit at times.


35. The Girl Who Knew Too Much by Amanda Quick. 3.5 stars. First-To-Read ARC. Historical romance thriller about 1930s Hollywood.

36. Borders of Infinity by Lois McMaster Bujold. 3.5 stars. Reread.

37. ETCHED IN BONE!!! by Anne Bishop. 4 stars. Okay, I love this series and was absolutely salivating for the latest (which came out day before yesterday) to the point I even preordered an audio copy from Audible. This one was different from the last couple in that there was no one huge Enemy but three smaller (tho no less vicious) enemies causing havoc for The Others resulting in three denouement. Also, the action fluctuated from more-or-less mundane to edge-of-the-seat exciting, and I thought the storyline could have been a bit tighter. Even so, I listened to it in two long sittings and enjoyed it a lot. It's a good installment to the series, and I'll be re-listening to it as an integral part of the whole every so often. I just hope this isn't the end, because I am not tired of reading about Meg and Simon and The Others.

38. The Mummy, or Ramses the Damned by Anne Rice. 3.75 stars. I loved this when I read it back in the late 80s/early 90s, and I enjoyed the reread, but it was overly melodramatic, the main character acted (and reacted) in ways that were not realistic for a 3,000+ year old immortal and one of the most successful Kings of Egypt, Julie was a wimp. Oddly, the character I disliked back when I first read it turned out to be my favorite character, or, at least, the one I found most compelling. Cleopatra

39. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman. 5 stars. Well, didn't I just tear through this reread! So good, and so happy he's going to be giving us a sequel (Six Sisters is the working title).

40. Reckoning by Jeaniene Frost. 4 stars. Short story featuring Bones, just before he meets Cat, on a caper in New Orleans.

41. Penric's Mission by Lois McMaster Bujold. 4 stars. Novella-length story of the World of Five Gods. Penric is sent to a neighboring kingdom to recruit a disgraced army general and ends up in the middle of a nasty conspiracy - as well as in a "bottle oubliette," which is about as nasty a place as one can be.

Currently not reading much of anything. Too much going on to focus. Cannot WAIT until I'm all packed and moved in my new place so things can get back to normal.

On deck: Nothing. I'm afraid I won't be reading anything until after I get moved.

Books Borrowed from the Library: The Children (wrong touchstone; correct book is http://www.librarything.com/work/13779 - but check out the first part of a looooong list of crazy touchstone titles without the correct one ANYWHERE on the list - WTH?), The Hanging Tree and Exit West.

Books Requested from the Library: Lincoln in the Bardo, Silence Fallen, and Into the Fire.

Books I Gave Up On/Put Aside For Awhile

Turbo Twenty-Three. I'm a bit tired of Stephanie Plus and friends. I tried to listen to it, and got through about 75% of it, but I just couldn't, so it's gone back to the library.

Pax Romana because I couldn't finish it in time for it to go back to the library. At some point, I may borrow it again, but I far and away prefer his biography of Julius Caesar Life of a Colossus.

War and Peace by Tolstoy. It was taking me so long, and I never really felt like picking it up again (though I did enjoy it while I was reading it). I'm going to put it aside or a time and try again later, maybe after I've moved and gotten settled, when I can actually think.

The Invisible Ring by Anne Bishop. A prequel to the Black Jewels series. It was just so boring. And stupid. I loved the first 3 or 4 of the Black Jewels series, but this just isn't up to that standard.

Brothers in Arms by Lois McMaster Bujold. This would be a reread, and I thought I would enjoy the series again, but right now I am so stressed that Miles' antics just seem to stress me out more. Is that weird?

Edited: Dec 28, 2016, 7:18pm Top




Edited: Jan 11, 12:16am Top

My most enjoyable and/or memorable reads of 2016, at least at this moment, are:


This Thing of Darkness and The Dead House by Harry Bingham. Mystery thrillers.

The Wrong Side of Goodbye by Michael Connelly. Audio. Latest Bosch.

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch. Scifi/Thriller.

Slade House by David Mitchell. "A thin slice of hell."

Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner. Literature.

The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin. Fantasy.

The Sarantine Mosaic by Guy Gavriel Kay. Alternate historical fantasy.

The Crystal Variation by Sharon Lee. Scifi/space opera.


Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind by Yuval Noah Harari. Audio. How we as a species got started through to where we are headed now.

Small Victories by Anne Lamott. Audio. Inspirational.

Dec 28, 2016, 7:49pm Top

I will be following your thread as always, Mary. Welcome back for 2017. xx

Dec 28, 2016, 8:35pm Top

Welcome back!

Edited: Dec 29, 2016, 6:24am Top

Hi Mary!

Happy New Year!

Dec 29, 2016, 8:47am Top

Dropping my star, Mary!

Dec 29, 2016, 1:22pm Top

Here to say hello and wishing you a wonderful 2017!

Dec 29, 2016, 1:24pm Top

Happy New Year (almost)!

Dec 29, 2016, 5:58pm Top

Happy new year of reading, Mary!

Dec 30, 2016, 4:25am Top

Hi Mary!

Dec 31, 2016, 8:22am Top

Dec 31, 2016, 9:15am Top

I am part of the group.
I love being part of the group.
I love the friendships bestowed upon my by dint of my membership of this wonderful fellowship.
I love that race and creed and gender and age and sexuality and nationality make absolutely no difference to our being a valued member of the group.

Thank you for also being part of the group.

Dec 31, 2016, 10:51am Top

Happy reading in 2017, Mary!

Edited: Jan 6, 5:39pm Top

Whoa! So many visitors! Thank you for all the New Year's wishes! I plan to visit everyone's threads today and tomorrow and leave my own heartfelt New Year's greetings. Since I am staying in tonight, having a glass of bubbly and some of my favorite noshes like brie and ice cream (not at the same time, mind) while snuggled under a comforter finishing up my last book of 2016, it should be doable. :)

>1 Storeetllr: I added a bunch of new books - mostly romances - to my "giveaway" list. All are paperbacks from the 70s, 80s, 90s, some out of print and hard to come by. I'll be adding sci/fi, fantasy and mysteries in the coming days. Please feel free to peruse and let me know if you find any you simply must have for your own.

Dec 31, 2016, 2:15pm Top

Wishing you all the best in the new year, Mary!

Dec 31, 2016, 2:16pm Top

Thanks, Jo! (Love Ogden Nash.) Happy New Year to you too. Hope we can get together soon for lunch or dinner or a meetup with everyone!

Dec 31, 2016, 2:18pm Top

It's New Year's Eve! Let's all give 2016 the rousing farewell it so richly deserves.

Dec 31, 2016, 2:19pm Top

>19 Storeetllr: I LOVE that!

Dec 31, 2016, 3:09pm Top

>19 Storeetllr: - Perfect!

Dec 31, 2016, 3:16pm Top

Happy New Year! (dropping a star)

Edited: Dec 31, 2016, 8:28pm Top

Mamie and Katie - It's the truth!

Thanks, Roni! You too!

Dec 31, 2016, 8:28pm Top

Okay, so I've been seeing The Meme going around. Here's my offering:

Describe yourself: Beastly Bones
Describe how you feel: One Foot in the Grave
Describe where you currently live: Illusion Town
If you could go anywhere, where would you go: The Library at Mount Char
Your favorite form of transportation: Carousel Sun
Your best friend is: The Girl in the Spider's Web
You and your friends are: An Alliance of Equals
What’s the weather like: Caressed by Ice
You fear: This Thing of Darkness
What is the best advice you have to give: Surrender, New York
Thought for the day: Who Buries the Dead?
How I would like to die: Staked
My soul’s present condition: Wicked as they Come

Dec 31, 2016, 8:56pm Top

Good luck with the book purging, Mary. I hope you have a Happy New Year - it sounds like it will be a year of change for you.

Dec 31, 2016, 9:47pm Top

Ha! I also chose Alliance of Equals for me and my friends, but passed on Staked.

Dec 31, 2016, 10:04pm Top

Thanks, Meg! I'm finding it strangely invigorating! Before I put a book I remember fondly in the donate box, tho, I check the library to make sure I can get it as an ebook or audio, just in case I form the burning desire to read it again. Happy New Year to you too! I'll be dropping by your thread tonight or tomorrow to wish you happy.

Ha! I saw your meme, Roni, but didn't remember you had chosen Alliance for you and your friends. I'd probably have used it anyway; it's a good one!

Dec 31, 2016, 11:45pm Top

I'm watching over your list. There's probably a few I'd be interested in.

Dec 31, 2016, 11:49pm Top

Just let me know. I'm up to 99 in the donate box as of this evening. I'm sure there will be a lot more in the coming weeks.

Jan 1, 3:49pm Top

Love your meme answers!

Jan 1, 4:14pm Top

Happy New Thread, Mary! I hope to see you around more in the New Year. I have missed your bookish thoughts.

Hope you are having a good holiday!

Jan 1, 4:44pm Top

>30 katiekrug: Thanks, Katie! You don't think some are a bit too dark? Can't help it; 2016 appears to have been a rather noir-ish year for me.

>31 msf59: Thanks, Mark! I've missed you too!

Jan 1, 4:50pm Top

Can it ever be too dark for 2016? Hmmmmm?

Jan 1, 4:51pm Top

>33 msf59: Right?!?

Jan 1, 8:32pm Top

Hi, Mary!

Jan 1, 10:22pm Top

Happy New Year, Mary! I don't blame you for having some dark answers for 2016, but I'm going to work toward shining a brighter light for all of us in 2017, as much as I can.*

*Disclaimer: This has all the trappings of a New Year's Resolution, the kind that will be broken the first time some college student jaywalks right in front of my car on a snowy day, but we'll hope for the best! :-)

Jan 1, 10:54pm Top

Hi, Amber!

Haha, Julia. I hope you do better with your resolution than I have done historically with mine.

Jan 2, 6:46pm Top

Happy New Year, Mary!

>19 Storeetllr: LOL!

Nice to see a fellow Liaden fan.

Edited: Jan 3, 3:24pm Top

Hi, Joe! Happy New Year to you too! Yes, I am almost finished with the Liaden series. Which would make me sad except there will I hope be another one out soon, and I can always reread the series!

Jan 3, 3:23pm Top

1. The Fall of the House of Cabal by Jonathan L. Howard. 4.5. Audio. Comic steampunk horror. Latest (and, perhaps, last?) of the Johannes Cabal, Necromancer books. Enjoyable, as always, filled with sly wit, sarcastic repartee, and outrageous behavior of the equally outrageous characters. Speaking of characters, I've got a huge crush on Horst, the "squeamish vampire," and I adore Madame Zarenyia. Cabal might very well be one of the most perfect anti-heroes ever written, and his evolution from soulless villain in Johannes Cabal, Necromancer to slightly more feeling human being with a glimmer of a conscience in this one is a treat to see. The only things that really bothered me were the denoument on the air ship with the Red Queen, which felt anti-climactic, and the threads left hanging if this is, as advertised, the last book of the series, which I am hoping it is not because Howard simply cannot be so cruel to leave so much unexplained, much less provide us with no more adventures of the Cabal brothers & friends. Anyway, I think I'll be rereading the series (and short stories, which are also wonderful) either this year or next because I don't want it to end. HIGHLY recommended. (But do start with the first in the series and also be sure to at least read the short story A Long Spoon first.)

Jan 3, 4:20pm Top

I read the first book in that series last year and thought it was great fun, Mary. And just last night I realized that Craig had purchased the second one for me on Kindle for Christmas - he just let me discover it on my own, so I didn't realize he had gotten it for me. *happy dance*

Jan 3, 4:34pm Top

What a wonderful husband you have, sneaking books on your Kindle that way!

Jan 3, 4:39pm Top

I know, right?!

Jan 3, 8:47pm Top

Wicked as They Come, eh? I'll keep that in mind:)

Forgive me, mary, I got so behind last year. I knew you were moving (without even asking me if I could handle it!), but I don't know where. Have you settled on a new home yet?

Jan 3, 8:53pm Top

Haha, yes, best keep it in mind! :)

Sorry for not getting permission, but I really haven't much choice. Not sure where yet. Wish it could be somewhere on the West Coast, but I don't think that's going to happen. For awhile, I was thinking Northern New Mexico, but now I'm considering Pueblo, which isn't too far to make a meetup once in awhile. *grin*

Edited: Jan 6, 6:12pm Top

2. Confessions of Young Nero by Margaret George. 3.5 stars. First-to-Read digital ARC. Historical fiction. I've always enjoyed reading historical fiction, and the ancient Roman world is a particular favorite of mine. Thus it was that I immediately dove into this novel depicting the life of Nero - about whom I knew less than many other famous Romans, barring what I read in Quo Vadis, Claudius the God, and Suetonius' Twelve Caesars - from his birth through the burning of Rome. I gobbled up the first 350 pages or so, then at around page 378 I stalled for a couple of weeks. It might have been that the relatively simplistic dialogue had gotten to me, or the way Nero tells about things that occurred without actually describing the scenes (the novel is written in first person). I suspect, though, that Nero's self-absorption had become tiresome and I just needed some time away from him, because, when I got back to it, I finished it quickly.

I think it might have been better if the novel had been written in the third person so there would be more balanced viewpoints, which would have also precluded the necessity of occasionally inserting short chapters told from the viewpoint of a couple of other characters, apparently to add information that Nero could not have known, which was a bit disruptive to the flow. All in all, though, it was a very well-researched, well-written, and sympathetic look at a controversial figure who is usually portrayed as the debauched emperor who "fiddled while Rome burned," and I look forward to reading Part 2.

Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this novel for free in exchange for providing an honest review.

Jan 5, 12:11am Top

>44 AMQS: She didn't check with me either, Anne.... :( *sob* Where did we go wrong??

Hi Mary! :)

Jan 5, 2:15pm Top

Heh. Not you guys. Never you guys. But snow and cold and trying to drive my little sportcar on winter roads?

Did you see my latest idea of moving to Pueblo?

Jan 5, 3:32pm Top

It would be easier to get a new car. Just sayin'... We don't want you to move away. Doesn't it snow in Pueblo?

Jan 5, 3:42pm Top

Yes, Pueblo does get snow, but it's a lower altitude, which is one of my goals. Both Albuquerque and Santa Fe are higher than Denver!

Also, I LIKE my little red sportscar!

Jan 5, 3:44pm Top

Happy New Year, Mary. Good luck with the culling of books, never easy for me.

Jan 5, 4:00pm Top

Hey, Beth! Happy New Year to you too! Do you have a thread for 2017? I don't remember seeing it last time I looked. I'll check to see if I can find it now.

Yes, culling books isn't a happy chore for book lovers. I'm trying to make it easier, though, by first making sure the library has a copy of whatever book I'm thinking of purging that I may want to reread. Then, if I start worrying about whether to purge or keep, I simply keep it. I've already put over 150 books in the "Donate" box and tossed about 10 that were damaged (after checking with the library, of course)! And I'm not even halfway finished going through the downstairs bookcases!

Jan 5, 4:04pm Top

I do have a thread, Mary. Look in the Bs.

Jan 5, 4:09pm Top

Found it! Just posted a quick hello.

Edited: Jan 6, 5:38pm Top

>4 Storeetllr: Following Joanne's (coppers) example, I just posted the most enjoyable and/or memorable books I read in 2016.

Jan 6, 5:30pm Top

Hi Mary, I've come to drop my star here and catch up. Looks like you are going to have an eventful 2017 and I am looking forward to being here to help support you in your re-location. I guess it's too late to convince you of the advantages of living in Canada and how great the west coast is?

Jan 6, 5:48pm Top

Oh, Judy! I would love to move back to the West Coast! I miss California so much! I don't think I could afford Canada, though, at least not Vancouver, and the cost of moving from Colorado to Northern California/Southern Oregon, which are relatively affordable and where I was considering moving to, is prohibitive. Unless I win the lottery (which I understand I need to actually, you know, play in order to win), I'm afraid I'm kind of stuck.

Jan 6, 5:53pm Top

Oh well, it was worth a try. I am also always wishing to win the lottery but never actually buying a ticket so I guess we aren't going to be millionaires any time soon!

Jan 6, 5:55pm Top

Could you hire your own large car/truck and drive yourself to where you want to go? I'm sure you've looked at all these options though, so probably not terribly helpful advice! I hope you can find somewhere you feel comfortable and that is affordable for you.

Jan 6, 5:55pm Top

Haha, I guess we aren't.

Jan 6, 8:24pm Top

>47 coppers: First Jenn, then Mary... was it something we said?

Mary, why Pueblo?

Jan 6, 10:12pm Top

I'm looking for lower-priced rentals and a lower altitude that won't cost me a fortune in moving costs. Pueblo fits the bill, more or less. I want to drive down in the next month to check it out, see if it's the kind of city I'd feel comfortable about living in and if it's likely I'll find a nice small house in a safe part of town that welcomes parrots. (Most important consideration!)

Oddly enough, Pueblo is at a lower altitude (4,692') than Albuquerque (5,312') and Santa Fe (7,198'), two other places I thought about moving to.

And no, it's really nothing you or Joanne or Donna said. LOL You guys.

Jan 7, 10:16am Top

>62 Storeetllr: Has the altitude been bothering you?

Jan 7, 1:24pm Top

Yes, I never seem to have acclimated to it,having lived my entire life at sea level or nearly. I'm usually okay in Denver, as long as I don't try to do a lot of heavy physical exercise, but any higher and I get sick just sitting down. I suppose I could stay in the Denver area if the cost of renting a place wasn't so exorbitant.

Edited: Jan 7, 3:46pm Top

I've just been reading about Pueblo, as I love discovering about new places. Hopefully the lower altitude will work for you. Speaking as someone who has only ever lived at sea level or thereabouts, I can't imagine living that high. It's also impossible to get that high in the UK, even if you lived on top of our highest 'mountain'. When are you taking an exploratory trip to see if it is somewhere you could be happy?

Jan 7, 4:16pm Top

Hi, Jenny! The mountains are beautiful, I admit, but I like looking at them from a distance. When I lived in California at sea level, we still had mountains nearby, and skiing within an hour or two's drive. I can't really imagine not having mountains looming in the distance. Tomorrow I'm supposed to go up to Frisco, which is at 9,000', for a family celebration, and I'm dreading it. If I can drive up at noon and return at 6 p.m., I might miss the worst effects of altitude sickness, especially if I drink a lot of water and stay away from alcohol. My sister told me to bring along a cannister of oxygen. It gets that bad!

Pueblo is still higher than I'd like. (I'd like to move to the coast of California or Oregon, but that's not in the cards just now.) I'm going to try to get to Pueblo by the first part of February for my first "exploratory trip" (I like that phrase!), and maybe make contact with a realtor who deals in rentals.

Jan 7, 5:55pm Top

So far, I've consigned 201 books to the Donate box and about 20 to the trash! Woo-hoo! I've been through half of the packed shelves in my downstairs bookcases and am excited to go through the rest this week. I hope to have my keepers down to half the shelf space when I'm finished.

Then I'll start on the two larger similarly packed bookcases upstairs. *shudder*

There's going to be a used book sale at my local library on January 26. I'm going to drop by on Monday to find out if they want mine for the sale. If you happen to see any on the "Donate 2017" list in my Catalog that you think you might want for your own, please let me know soon so I can set them aside. Most are paperbacks from the 60s, 70s and 80s in the genres of mystery, scifi, fantasy and romance.

Wow. I'm really doing this!

Jan 8, 6:07am Top

>67 Storeetllr: 221 books culled, wow Mary!

Jan 8, 8:23am Top

Well done on the cull! Very impressive :).

Jan 8, 4:37pm Top

Thanks, Anita and Jenny! It wasn't as hard as I expected it would be either. If I thought I might want to read it again, and the book itself didn't hold any special meaning for me, I just checked to be sure it was available from the library. If it was, into the "Donate" box it went. If it wasn't available from any of the libraries I subscribe to, and I thought I might want to read it again, I kept it. If I struggled with letting it go, I kept it. Easy-peasy. Of course, I still have three bookcases left to go through, and many of the upcoming books are hardcover and/or more meaningful to me for one reason or another.

Things could get ugly.


Jan 8, 8:40pm Top

You are a book-culling machine, Mary! I need to get back to that project, as I started it a while ago and then didn't keep it up. I always stall out at the part where I actually have to take the books to the library/Goodwill, as it's a bit of a bother lugging boxes of books around whilst employing a cane.

Edited: Jan 8, 11:53pm Top

Yes. That is one of the hardest parts, isn't it, Julia - getting them out of the house to the donation center. I hope the library takes mine; otherwise, it's Goodwill, I guess. Unless I can find a hospital or assisted-living facility or similar place that will take them, but that may take more effort than I care to put into it at this point in time.

Can you get anyone to help you with the project?

Jan 9, 10:13am Top

>67 Storeetllr: Well done Mary - that is one heck of a cull. I donated a fair few books to my Sister in law's school (she is a teacher there) and I must get round to sending off some more.

Jan 9, 10:16am Top

>72 Storeetllr: I'm actually looking into hiring a professional de-clutterer person. I have so much stuff that I am ready and willing to get rid of, but the actual getting it out of the house is problematic, as is the organizing-what's-left bit. I've finally decided the mental relief of getting rid of stuff is worth spending money on. Big step for me, as I'm what you might call a tightwad. :-)

Jan 9, 11:33am Top

Just popping by to say I'm definitely up for a joint read of War and Peace if you fancy it. I'm about 12 chapters in, which isn't very much when you consider how short they are, but I'm already confused by characters and their relationships with each other. My brain simply zones out at times. So maybe reading it along with someone else might make the difference.

Jan 9, 12:27pm Top

I'd join in for a War and Peace group read. I got it for Christmas.

Jan 9, 12:36pm Top

Wow: all that book culling is impressive stuff. And a very belated happy new year!

Jan 9, 12:38pm Top

>62 Storeetllr: Pueblo is roughly the size of my small city, Springfield, MO. It's perfect for me because we are a university town which extends the cultural base. I would definitely come see you if you move to Pueblo. Maybe we could have a meetup with Becky (labwriter) in Canon City and Donna (dallenbaugh) in Walsenburg. I need to check a map to see how close those places are.

Jan 9, 3:47pm Top

I've Googled pictures of Pueblo and it appears to be a lovely city, Mary. And wow, your book culling is going amazingly well. That's one project I must get to soon, I'm at the point where the shelves are all full and I'm having to pile books on the floor.

Jan 9, 4:05pm Top

Hi, all, and thank you for visiting! I'll respond to your posts shortly. Right now, I'm just stopping by for a second to leave a link to a site which is giving away a bunch of science fiction and fantasy ebooks through January 15. I haven't gone through the entire batch yet, but I thought some of you might also be interested in checking it out. http://sffbookbonanza.com/freebooks/#fantasy

Jan 9, 4:36pm Top

>73 PaulCranswick: Thanks, Paul! I feel pretty good about what I've done so far, but I have a looong way to go!

>74 rosalita: I, a skinflint of long-standing, think that's a great idea, Julia! I wouldn't be de-cluttering except I absolutely refuse to move my junk even one more time, but I also think living in a clutter-free home would be life-changing and soul-freeing.

>75 lunacat: Yay! I'll start reading W&P today and will I hope be able to catch up at some point.

>75 lunacat:, >76 Morphidae: Shall we start a new thread for the joint read?

>77 charl08: Thanks, Charlotte!

>78 Donna828: Pueblo is a university town too! I'd love to get together with Becky and Donna. It's only about 2 hours from Denver, so maybe we could have a meet up somewhere in between (Co. Springs?) with Joanne, Anne and Kris too!

>79 DeltaQueen50: I'm looking forward to visiting Pueblo in a month - or whenever there is a stretch of a few snow-free days around then. To be honest, Judy, I would not be culling books if I wasn't moving soon and determined not to cart around so much stuff this time! I mean, books - even if I'm never going to read them again - are so lovely to have around. And who really knows if I'm going to want to reread something in future? That's why, unless I'm 100% positive I absolutely will not reread something, I keep it unless I can find it at the library or, at least, on Amazon.

Jan 10, 9:57am Top

The thread for the joint read is here:


Jan 10, 4:24pm Top

Thanks, Jenny! I finished Chapter 8 of War and Peace last night before giving up.

Jan 10, 7:03pm Top

Hey, Mary! Just popping in. Hope your week is going well. Sorry, W & P didn't work out for you. I had mixed feelings about it, but I am glad I finished it.

Hope your next book is much more satisfying.

Jan 10, 7:45pm Top

Thanks for sharing your culling strategy. I've been doing something similar, passing on books that I know I won't read again or that don't fit any of my collections. But I also have an emotional attachment to so many of them. My friend says that I can tell the story of so many of my books: where it came from, what was going on when I bought it and so forth...the story of how the books it into my life even if I haven't read them.

I would love an excuse to visit Pueblo and hubby and I just bought a pull behind camper trailer.

Jan 10, 9:34pm Top

>84 msf59: Oh! Sorry, no, Mark - I just gave up for the night. LOL It's not THAT bad. (Yet.) In fact, I just got back from the library where I picked up a DVD of the TV adaptation (or one of them) because someone said it might help keep track of the characters and plotlines. Anyway, I'm doing the read with Jenny (lunacat), so I HAVE to stick with it to the (I hope not bitter) end. :) I will, of course, be reading other books while I'm reading W&P.

>85 witchyrichy: I would LOVE it if you & your hubby would come to Pueblo for a visit, Karen! Assuming I move there. I'm a little bummed - I saw the perfect little house, one I can afford in an area I am looking at. BUT. No pets. :( So many places are "no pets," and I'm not getting rid of my birds. They're well-behaved and quiet, don't destroy the carpets and woodwork like dogs and cats have been known to do. They're just a little messy, and I clean up after them on a daily basis. It's very disheartening.

As for the culling, yes, I am already under so much stress about other things that getting anxious over what books to keep would be too much. Anyway, I can always come back to the issue again before I move.

I went to two libraries today, each in a different system, and both librarians I spoke with were excited when I told them I currently have around 200 to donate and will eventually be donating at least 500 in total. I think I'll give half to one and half to the other. I'll probably deliver what I've culled to date by this weekend or early next week .

Jan 10, 9:42pm Top

Whew! Glad you are sticking me with W & P. I listened to it on audio and read my print copy. I think I might have liked it better, if I would have just stuck with the print version. I think something was lost, in switching back and forth.

Jan 10, 10:23pm Top

How long did it take you to finish it, Mark? And who was the reader of the audio version you listened to? I tried to listen to one read by Frederick Davidson, and it was painful. I'm not sure I like the translation of the ebook I'm reading, so I found one I like better and have reserved that one from the library. I foresee going back and forth a number of times because I am certain I won't be finishing it in 21 days, or 42, or 63, or 84 days so will be renewing and/or borrowing a different version more than a few times over the course of the next few months. Unless I break down and buy a copy.

Jan 10, 10:26pm Top

I think it took about 2 weeks or so and I think my audio version was read by Frederick Davidson. No wonder! LOL.

I just kept plugging away at it, until I was done.

Jan 11, 5:42pm Top

Two weeks! You're fast! Some folks have said it could take months! I'm afraid it will take me months too, because I will be reading other books in addition to W&P. On the other hand, if I get into it - really into it - I may finish it in a few weeks.

Edited: Jan 12, 9:43pm Top

So happy! Three people have taken me up on my offer to give them books from my "Donate 2017" collection! Two LTers and one RL friend - a fellow volunteer at the bird rescue has asked for all Agatha Christie mysteries! I've moved those books from "Donate 2017" to "Donated 2017" to avoid disappointment. I'll be taking whatever is left from the "Donate 2017" collection to the library early next week. In total, I've culled 285 books so far! (And I still have 3 bookcases to go through.) Wow!

On the reading front, I've finished 21 chapters of War and Peace since I started 3 days ago, and though I feel no affinity for any of the characters, I haven't hated the novel. My plan seems to be to read a few chapters a night before turning off the light and listening to lighter fare before going to sleep. One thing that stuck me is that I would not have done well as an aristo in 1800s Russia. Much too much partying going on for this introvert who would rather be hanging around at home in my overstuffed chair (or bed) with a book.

Jan 13, 10:20am Top

Agreed re: not being a good aristocrat. Although I might be OK with the wine drinking.........

Jan 13, 1:42pm Top

Heh. There is that!

So, I worked at the parrot shelter yesterday and was too tired at the end of the day to tackle W&P, so I went to bed and listened to Turbo Twenty-Three instead until I fell asleep, which didn't take long. I'm sure I'll make up for it today, since I actually am thinking about W&P and wondering what happens next.

So many princes and princesses!

Jan 14, 2:46pm Top

>93 Storeetllr: So many princes and princesses
Russia must have been filled with those and other aristocrats in these days ;-)

Jan 14, 3:53pm Top

It's astonishing. They must have been as numerous as ticks on the back of a mongrel. And the way they lived, and treated the peasants. No wonder the peasants revolted.

Jan 17, 6:44pm Top

You seem to be making good progress on War & Peace...impressive. I seem to remember an essay or tip sheet for reading Russian novels? I think one idea was to rename characters so you didn't stumble over their names that you weren't sure how to pronounce.

Jan 17, 8:21pm Top

Not such great progress, Karen. I haven't cracked the book (or turned on the Kindle, to be accurate) for 2 days. Tonight...

Actually, I kind of enjoy the names and the convention of using both names to address a person. So strange to a modern American who is used to addressing people by their first name - often a nickname - in most social situations.

Jan 18, 7:11am Top

>91 Storeetllr: I love your comment about not making a good aristo in 1800s Russia, Mary. I often have similar thoughts whenever I am reading a Georgette Heyer Regency. Those characters go to a different ball, assembly, rout party (?) or whatever every dang night of the week! Granted, they do absolutely nothing all day except promenade through Hyde Park in a carriage, but still. I don't know how they don't all just drop dead of exhaustion or want to run screaming from all those people.

Jan 18, 11:21am Top

I'm still dragging my heels on starting War and Peace.

It's just so... HUGE.

Jan 18, 11:23am Top

I've stalled too. I'm hoping to pick it up again tomorrow and get a decent block read, but if I don't, I don't. It's not like it's going anywhere!

Jan 18, 7:54pm Top

>97 Storeetllr: Plus I noticed in the list of characters in Wikipedia, many had a pretty accessible name in parentheses: Count Pyotr Kirillovich (Pierre) Bezukhov. Do they use that name (ie, Pierre? I know...I could just read the book myself :-) Are you doing it for a challenge?

Jan 19, 1:44am Top

>98 rosalita: Right!?! Of course, I'm a senior, and elderly folks weren't required to participate to the extent younger people did, but still.

>99 Morphidae: Yes, I'm dragging my feet too. I was enjoying it, but the upcoming inaugurdisaster has got me so down that I'm rereading the Guild Hunter series to keep me from thinking about anything serious. And today I was crying while reading about what happened to Dimitri in Archangel's Blade. I'm a mess.

>100 lunacat: LOL Jenny! No, it's definitely not going anywhere, you're right about that! I got the free ebook from Gutenberg and will install it on my Kindle so I don't have to keep borrowing from the library.

>101 witchyrichy: The copy I am reading uses Pierre, so far at least. No challenge except the usual challenge of reading, um, challenging literature. :)

Jan 19, 1:03pm Top

>102 Storeetllr: I'm not acknowledging anything happening on Friday.

Oh, I recently reread the Guild Hunter series as a comfort read, too!

Jan 19, 3:19pm Top

>102 Storeetllr: I think mine might possibly be a project gutenberg one too. Either that or it's a 99p version from amazon. I haven't picked it up at all today. I'm starting to think I'll have to come up with some carrot and stick ideas to get me settled to the task.......

Jan 19, 4:00pm Top

>103 Morphidae: I hear you, Morphy. I just saw that The Movie Channel will be airing A Face in the Crowd on Friday. I think it will be worth watching. I'm leaving my TV on that day to a channel that is showing no news. At first I thought "Animal Planet," but now I think I'll leave it on TMC. Here's the link, if you are interested.

>104 lunacat: The fact that you consider it a task is not a good sign, Jenny. lol I'm hoping to be able to get back to W&P after the Women's March on Saturday, which I plan to attend in Denver and which I hope will be uplifting enough to get me out of these doldrums. It's supposed to snow on Friday, though, so it's up in the air as to whether I'll be able to drive anywhere on Saturday.

Jan 19, 4:02pm Top

It's silly, because I have actually enjoyed what I've read. I think it's just a psychological thing for me - oh it's War and Peace so it must feel an effort. Ridiculous, I know, it's just a book like any other!

Jan 20, 4:28pm Top

How is Turbo Twenty-Three, Mary? We read every Stephanie Plum that comes out.

Edited: Jan 20, 4:48pm Top

Happy Friday, Mary. I know many of us are in mourning, so how about a big Group Hug? I am sure we could all use it.

I hope the week went well.

Ooh, A Face in the Crowd. Now, that is a great one.

Jan 20, 5:11pm Top

>106 lunacat: I think you're right, psychologically it's daunting. I'll get back to it, though. I just need to get through this week.

>107 jnwelch: I just couldn't bring myself to finish it, Joe. I think I've had all I can take of Stephanie Plum. She just never seems to change.

>108 msf59: Yes! {{{Group Hug!!!}}} The week's not over yet. Today may be the worst day of the decade. I've taken to thinking of it as "Blackest Friday." Tomorrow I'll be marching in the Denver Sister March, along with Joanne (coppers), her husband and her son and my niece and great-niece who's 4 years old (my daughter's volunteering and marching in D.C.), which I hope will help lift my spirits. Too bad more people didn't see A Face in the Crowd BEFORE 11/8.

Jan 20, 5:23pm Top

>109 Storeetllr: Ah, shoot. Yeah, I know what you mean. I do wish Evanovich would introduce some change into the series.

Edited: Jan 21, 5:09pm Top

You should try The Scam. It's a nice bit of fluff that she wrote with Lee Goldberg that I got as an ER.

My review:
"The Scam has the feel of a smart Stephanie Plum caper novel without all the annoyances. Kate O’Hare is what Stephanie Plum would be if she grew up and became a capable, strong, kick-ass woman. The humor is there but it’s neither over the top nor campy. There is only one secondary character that is annoyingly quirky (versus the many in most Plum novels.) I loved immersing myself in the lifestyles of the filthy rich. Best of all, while there is a love interest there is no romantic triangle! I really enjoyed reading this book and look forward to reading both the previous and upcoming ones."

I haven't read anymore in the series but that's because, to be honest, I forgot about it. I'll have to check on out of the library soon.

Jan 22, 12:42am Top

>107 jnwelch: Size does in this instance put me off too. I have the bloody thing wedged into my book space taking up at least three other books space. It would bog me down so badly that I would fall way behind my reading targets.

Have a lovely weekend, Mary.

Jan 23, 5:08pm Top

>110 jnwelch: Sorry, Joe. I wish it too, but I'm not holding my breath.

>111 Morphidae: Thanks, Morphy. I'll check it out.

>106 lunacat:, >112 PaulCranswick: That's why I'll only read W&P on Kindle. I try to read the printed book, I'd injure my wrists.

Thanks, Paul! Hope you are having a great week!

Jan 24, 6:11pm Top

>109 Storeetllr: Thanks for marching! Did it lift your spirits?

Edited: Jan 24, 8:31pm Top

It did, for a day. Then I started seeing reports of people like T***p and other right wingers criticizing us, saying we should have voted (I know I did, as did my daughter, my nieces and my friends, and pretty sure most of the marchers voted too) or that we shouldn't be allowed to march, protest, rally, whatever, dismissing our concerns, saying we were all marching in support of abortion and calling us a bunch of baby killers. Very discouraging.

Jan 24, 9:44pm Top

Hi Mary, you should feel very proud of yourself for getting out there and marching. Mockery and put downs seem to be the Trump group's way of dealing with adversity.

Jan 24, 10:33pm Top

Hi Mary! We proudly marched, too, and I felt better than I had in months. Wish I could bottle that feeling, as things seem to get worse and worse each day, and it's only Day 5. Ugh.

Jan 25, 12:49pm Top

Jan 25, 12:59pm Top

>116 DeltaQueen50: Thanks for the words of encouragement, Judy. I imagine Canada is feeling a bit anxious over what is happening here. I heard a joke that Canada is already working on a wall between it and the U.S. - a nice, thick, thorny hedge. LOL

>117 AMQS: Joanne told me you were there, Anne. So proud to of us Denver LTers and our supportive families! If you ever figure out a way to bottle that feeling, make a gallon or two of it for me? It's going to be a long loooong 4 years.

Edited: Jan 25, 2:36pm Top

Since the beginning of the year, I've started two (free) online courses from Future Learn! One is a Creative Writing course that I'm taking in the hopes it will kickstart me into getting back to writing, and the other is Genealogy: Researching Your Family Tree. I've got a couple of banker boxes filled with papers from research I've done since 2004, plus family documents and old photos, and I want to put it all in order and learn how to research properly as a lot of what I have is garbage.

So far, I'm impressed with the level of teaching. Here's the website, in case anyone is interested in free courses (there is a huge variety of courses offered besides the two I chose): https://www.futurelearn.com/.

Of course, this might not be the best time for me to take even one course, much less two, what with my need to prepare for my upcoming move, but if I waited for the perfect time to do it, it would never happen!

ETA that I was just browsing the Future Learn site and signed up for a course on the archaeology of Portus at Ostia Antica (starts 30 January), a course on England during the War of the Roses that includes info on the discovery and reburial of Richard III's bones (starts 27 February), and Rome, a Virtual Tour of the Ancient City (starts 13 March). Plus I registered interest in numerous upcoming courses that haven't yet been scheduled. Be careful if you go to check out Future Learn. That damn site is addictive and DANGEROUS!

Jan 26, 10:36am Top

The FutureLearn courses sound interesting. I took an online poetry course at one of those MOOCs and really enjoyed it. I would love to take more but I don't know when I'd ever fit them in. This having to work for a living is really limiting me!

Jan 26, 12:27pm Top

Heh. I hear that, Julia! As I know you know, the coursework can be done at your convenience. One of my current classes is 3 hours a week, the other is 4, but of course that doesn't include participating with my fellow online classmates. I figure I can fit that in, could fit that in even if I were working. It helps that the classes I'm choosing aren't business, science or math but things my brain is already predisposed to enjoy learning about. And that there's none of that pesky grading nonsense to worry about.

Jan 28, 11:05am Top

>120 Storeetllr: Thanks for sharing the online course site. I teach online but would love to take a course as well. Several you mentioned are of interest! And I laughed at your comment that if we waited until the perfect time, we would never do anything. Seems to apply to so much of our lives!

Jan 28, 3:43pm Top

It does, Karen! In my experience, "later" always ends up meaning "never."

I forgot you teach online courses. These days, I like taking them more than taking classes at a physical location. It's so hard for me to get out anymore - mostly because I like being home so much, I don't like to drive in the snow, and getting ready to go out always takes longer than it's worth. Yes, it's true. I've turned into a recluse.

Jan 29, 10:06am Top

Hello from a fellow recluse. Here I am in Kansas City for ten whole days and all I am planning on doing is making a trip to Half-Price Books to "Trade" the 50+ books I culled from my stash and maybe a day trip to Lawrence, an hour away, to meet up with LT friend Brenda. I really should venture out to the Nelson-Atkins, a first-rate Art Museum on The Plaza.

I don't think birds should be in the pet ban! That's too bad that you are running into those obstacles in Pueblo. Keep us posted, Mary. I think it's so brave of you to pick up and move to a new city where you don't know anyone.

Jan 29, 2:41pm Top

Hi, Fellow Recluse! And congrats on culling 50+ books! It's not easy, letting go, but I'm finding it liberating in a way I could not have imagined. The fact the books I'm letting go are available from the library - or Amazon at a pinch - helps.

I get why landlords are chary of renting to pet owners. Dogs chew carpets and newell posts, dig up gardens, or are sometimes aggressive; cats pee on carpets and scratch walls; even birds can be destructive. But all that is the fault of the person. And if the landlord is afraid they'll have to replace the carpet or garden or newell post, well, add an extra amount to the security deposit. If I wasn't considering eventually moving back to California, I'd think hard about buying a place in Pueblo.

Pueblo is close enough to my sister and nieces and the bird rescue place and the vet that I don't think it will seem too isolated. Also, there's a university in Pueblo, which is nice for finding book stores and libraries.

Edited: Jan 29, 9:21pm Top

I didn't realize you were having such a difficult time finding a place that would accept pets. :(

Have you asked if they would make an exception for birds?

Jan 30, 12:06am Top

I don't have to move until the end of April, so it's not crucial yet. It's just that, since I've been looking, a lot of the places I've seen online that I like say, in capital letters, "NO PETS!" One realtor I spoke with said I can always ask for an exception for the birds.

I plan to drive down to Pueblo toward the end of February (it's about 2 hours away) and spend the day looking around, talking with realtors who handle rentals, and maybe looking at one or two places.

Jan 30, 2:48pm Top

Hi Mary - thanks for the link to the Future Learn site. I will check it out!

Re: the pets and renting issue. We ran into this, too. The place we finally rented had a No Pets policy, but our realtor negotiated for us, and we paid a higher deposit and a (very slightly) higher rent. Of course, that only allowed the one cat, but as you say, birds are much less likely to be destructive than cats or dogs (though ours have never had chewing/scratching/peeing problems, thank goodness!).

Jan 30, 3:58pm Top

Hi, Katie! Thanks for the visit. Hope you find something good on Future Learn! I've currently got three courses going - I wasn't able to resist, though I really don't have enough time to do justice to all three. I may have to opt out of the one on the archaeology of Portus, which just started, though I really don't want to.

I'm hoping to be able to negotiate too and wouldn't mind paying a higher deposit for my two birds. It's kind of wrong to charge a higher rent for a pet, though, in my opinion. I mean, you're renting a finite space, and it shouldn't really matter whether you're one person or three or one person with a cat or a bird or even both (though that would be difficult on a whole different level). And I speak as a former landlord. Greed, is what I think.

Jan 30, 7:16pm Top

Hi, Mary! Back home. Had a great trip. I am now an official "Bird Geek" and I stand proud.

Hope everything is going well, my friend.

Jan 30, 8:02pm Top

"Head Warbler" and "Bird Geek Extraordinaire." That's our Mark!

Things are going about as well as can be expected, considering what's going on in D.C.

Jan 30, 8:50pm Top

"considering what's going on in D.C." I think we will need each other, more than ever, my friend.

Jan 30, 11:08pm Top

And books. Good friends and books are all that's keeping me alive.

Jan 31, 6:39am Top

>133 msf59: >134 Storeetllr: Agreed. Big hugs, friend.

Jan 31, 1:53pm Top

Thanks, Amber. Hugs back.

Feb 3, 6:15pm Top

January stats:

17 books read
13 Audiobooks
3 E-books
1 GN

1 5-star
1 4.5-star

10 rereads

13 Fantasy
2 Historical
1 SciFi
1 Mystery

1. The Fall of the House of Cabal by Jonathan L. Howard. 4.5. Audio. Comic steampunk horror. Johannes Cabal, Necromancer series #5. Review here: >40 Storeetllr:.

2. Confessions of Young Nero by Margaret George. 3.5 stars. First-to-Read digital ARC. Historical fiction. Review here: >46 Storeetllr:

3. Cast in Flight by Michelle Sagara. 3.5 stars. Audio. Latest in the Elantra Chronicles. Review for this and the rest in >2 Storeetllr:

4. Unexpected Stories by Octavia Butler. 4 stars. Audio. Novella and short story collection.

5. Thrice the Brinded Cat by Alan Bradley. 4 stars. Audio. Flavia de Luce mystery.

6. Angels' Blood by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. Reread. Guild Hunter series #1.

7. Archangel's Kiss by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. Reread. GH series #2.

8. Archangel's Consort by Nalini Singh. 4 stars Audio. Reread. GH series #3.

9. Archangel's Blade by Nalini Singh. 3.5 stars. Audio. Reread. Dmitri's story. GH series #4.

10. Archangel's Storm by Nalini Singh. 3.5 Stars. Audio. Reread. Jason's story. GH series #5.

11. Archangel's Legion by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. Reread. Back to Raphael and Elena. GH series #6.

12. Archangel's Shadows by Nalini Singh. 3.75 stars. Audio. Reread. Ash's and Janvier's story. GH series #7.

13. Archangel's Enigma by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. Reread. Naasir's story. GH series #8.

14. Archangel's Heart by Nalini Singh. 4 stars. Audio. GH series # 9.

15. Angel's Pawn by Nalini Singh. 3.5 stars. Novelette. GH series.

16. Death's Rival by Faith Hunter. 3.5 stars. Jane Yellowrock series #4.

17. March: Book Three by John Lewis. 5 stars. GN.

Feb 3, 7:36pm Top

Guild Hunter reread! Whoo hoo!

Feb 3, 10:51pm Top

Kaylin update, hurray! Even if you weren't totally enamored.

Feb 5, 3:04pm Top

>138 Morphidae: Right!?! :) Very little beats the Guild Hunter and Anne Bishop's Courtyard series for comfort reads, you know?

>139 ronincats: Hah!

Feb 5, 3:09pm Top

Happy Sunday, Mary! Hope you are doing well.

And hooray for the March Trilogy!

Feb 6, 12:49am Top

Hi, Mark! Sorry I missed your post until now. I guess I got offline right after I posted my last and didn't see yours. Hope you had a lovely day off and enjoyed the Super Bowl. I didn't watch it, but my sister said the commercials were fantastic - many of them were critical of T***p without actually saying it in words.

Yes, the March Trilogy is a masterpiece of the genre. I am thinking of buying the set to have it on hand. Perhaps after I've moved so I don't have to move it. :)

Feb 6, 1:06am Top

So, Nickel nailed me tonight so bad I bled like a stuck pig. My own fault - she tried to attack Rosie, who wisely flew out of the way, while dumb me got in the way and had her step up on my finger, KNOWING it was a bad idea, and she latched onto the back of my hand between thumb and pointer finger and bit down hard. So I put both birds to bed early (poor Rosie got "punished" along with bad Nickel) and went to bed myself with a bowl of chocolate ice cream and a romantic thriller by a favorite author, because nothing heals a wound better than chocolate and a good book. It's still seeping blood; I'll be getting up soon to put on a bandage.

Tomorrow, I'm going to rethink how I handle Nickel when she gets all homicidally excited like that. Maybe keep a stick handy so I can have her step up on that instead of my finger.

Feb 6, 6:42am Top

>143 Storeetllr: Gosh, Mary! That darn Nickel doesn't know what she's doing, attacking the food source. :-) Do you think you need stitches? I don't know anything about being bitten by a bird, but are there pathogens you need to worry about? I'm sure you're an old hand at this, judging by the calm tone of your post!

Feb 6, 9:11am Top

>144 rosalita: Yeah, the phrase "biting the hand that feeds her" comes to mind... :) Hope your hand isn't too wounded!

Feb 6, 11:53am Top

I hope that the bite eventually stopped bleeding and that it isn't too sore today. I once had to have stitches when I sliced that web of skin between the thumb and hand, and my goodness was it painful every time I forgot and used it too much! Fingers crossed for better behaved birds today.

Feb 6, 11:56am Top

Thanks for the words of sympathy, Julia and Jim. No, I'll be okay. Another Grey at the shelter nailed me a few months ago (in the same place - I'm seeing a pattern to my stupidity) and I recovered okay. I did wash it well and put antibiotic on it, and it doesn't really hurt, but she did break the skin and must have hit a little vein just under the skin surface, because it bled quite a bit until I used pressure to stop it.

She's never bitten me that hard before, so it was a bit of a shock, though she has given me gentle warning bites in the past when I was doing something stupid. People tend to forget - I know I do - that, unlike dogs and cats who've been our companions for millennia, parrots, however gently and lovingly they usually behave, are only a couple of generations from the wild and can be unpredictable if you aren't paying attention.

Feb 6, 12:16pm Top

>147 Storeetllr: Well, I'm sure Nickel is very sorry for causing you pain. Or would be, if she had any idea. :-)

And that's a good reminder about the wildness of even domesticated animals. Even the most loving dog or cat will react badly if they are startled or scared or hurt. It's only natural that birds would do the same.

Feb 6, 12:22pm Top

I'm glad to hear there isn't much pain :).

Feb 6, 2:16pm Top

And it's one of those spots that moves a *lot* so it doesn't clot easy. I think having a stick nearby is a good thing. Is Nickel used to stepping on a stick instead of your finger or will that just intensify her reaction?

Feb 6, 2:29pm Top

Sorry about the hand, Mary. Hope it doesn't handicap you at all. And yes, having a plan for temper tantrums sounds good. Especially if you have her practice getting on the stick when she isn't mad first.

Feb 6, 3:59pm Top

>148 rosalita: Yes, I'm sure she'd be sorry if she were human, but she's a bird and meant to teach me a lesson, which she surely did. She is also still mad at me for bringing Rosie into her territory. I'm going to hold out until we move, then, if things don't get better, I'm probably going to bring Rosie back to the shelter, though I don't want to, although I've worked with her a lot to help her be more people friendly, so she might be adopted faster next time.

>149 lunacat: Thanks, Jenny. It only hurts when I touch it.

>150 Morphidae: Nickel is used to stepping up on a finger, but, as Roni says, I plan to practice with her stepping up on a stick so she will get used to that too.

>151 ronincats: Thanks, Roni. And you are so right about practicing with a stick when she isn't mad!

Feb 6, 10:28pm Top

I'm sorry you were hurt, Mary, but I thoroughly approve of your treatment: NOTHING heals a wound better than chocolate and a good book!

Feb 7, 12:35am Top

Oh dear! And ouch! Hope your finger is feeling better. Poor Nickel didn't mean to get you...

Do you ever wear gloves with them?

Feb 7, 2:45pm Top

>153 AMQS: Thanks, Anne! Glad you approve the the treatment. It worked too! I slept really well that night, with no pain!

>154 coppers: Poor Nickel? Haha, I see where your sympathies lie, Jo. :) (And oh yes she did mean to get me, because I got between her and her prey. Little raptor.) As for wearing gloves, birds fear gloves, perhaps from memory, perhaps because they are something new, perhaps because when people wear them it's because they're afraid, and you know how animals respond to fear.

Anyway, I'm okay. There's no bruising, no swelling, and the cuts are healing. I'm working with Nickel to step up on the stick. She is not thrilled, but she's doing it (reluctantly). I have to cheer her and clap and make a huge deal when she does step up on it. She loves praise, little showbird.

Feb 10, 1:19pm Top

Saw a couple of great articles on the Book Riot site.

100 Must-Read Modern Classics. How many have you read? Me? Sadly, not very many.

Invisible Man
The Haunting of Hill House
To Kill a Mockingbird
In Cold Blood
The Left Hand of Darkness
Slaughterhouse Five
An Unsuitable Job for a Woman
The Shining
The House of the Spirits
The Name of the Rose
The Handmaid's Tale
Joy Luck Club

There are a number on the list that I have been meaning to get to, and a number I haven't even heard of. I feel like such a philistine.

Here's another gem from Book Riot: Book Recommendations From Countries Targeted by Trump’s Travel Ban.


Feb 10, 1:39pm Top

>156 Storeetllr: I was surprised at how many I have read:
Invisible Man
I've not read The Crucible but I saw a stage production of it — not sure that counts, really
Ditto for Waiting for Godot
A Good Man Is Hard to Find
The Haunting of Hill House
A Raisin in the Sun — this play I read in college
To Kill a Mockingbird
The Fire Next Time
In Cold Blood
Wide Sargasso Sea
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
84 Charing Cross Road
The Shining
The Handmaid's Tale
The Remains of the Day
The Things They Carried
The God of Small Things

I've got a number of others on my radar, and some even on my shelves. Others I've never even heard of. Quite the eclectic list! Thanks for sharing.

Feb 10, 2:58pm Top

Eclectic indeed! Glad you found it interesting.

Last year, I tried reading Flannery's A Good Man is Hard to Find but couldn't stand it. Perhaps I should try again?

Feb 10, 3:25pm Top

I put the list of ones I've read over on my thread - I counted 19 read and 33 owned but not yet read.

Edited: Feb 13, 6:53am Top

>156 Storeetllr: Gah. I've only read 20. What am I doing with my life?!

Feb 13, 4:07pm Top

>159 katiekrug: :)

>160 scaifea: Hah! What are you doing with your life? Um, Charlie, baking, sewing, volunteering at Charlie's school, etc.

Feb 13, 4:09pm Top

Really excited to learn that The Gathering Edge, a new Liaden Universe novel, centered on Theo and Bechimo, is coming out this May!


Feb 13, 5:02pm Top

>162 Storeetllr: Thanks for the tip!

Feb 13, 5:49pm Top

So is Nickel a pro at stepping up on a stick now?

Feb 13, 5:53pm Top

>163 jnwelch: Yep!

>164 Morphidae: Nickel freaks every time she sees me coming with the stick and flies away! lol I'm still working on it.

Feb 13, 6:33pm Top

>165 Storeetllr: LOL, what happened? She was doing so well!

Feb 13, 6:46pm Top

She just does not like the stick. Rosie hops right up on it, no problem. Nickel acts like it's the most dangerous thing in the world and out to eat her or something. Crazy little raptor.

Edited: Feb 13, 6:50pm Top

Hi, Mary! Glad to see you checking in. I hope you had a good weekend. All good here, in Chicagoland. Those books treating you fine?

Feb 13, 7:58pm Top

>162 Storeetllr: Yep, I bought that (pre-order) back on September 30. Still 2 and half more months!

Are there any treat sticks that come long enough for Nickel to hop onto, and then she can have a bite at the same time?

Feb 14, 1:37am Top

>162 Storeetllr: And if you're up for it, the eARC is out already at Baen. $15 for a not-quite-edited book (though Sharon Lee says there aren't any story changes, just typos and the like) is too rich for my blood - but for some people, getting it three months early is worth it.

Feb 18, 9:21am Top

Thank for sharing the list from Book Riot. I've read a fair number of them...was surprised to see Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? on the list. Read it after seeing Bladerunner. Electic list, indeed!

Feb 19, 2:56am Top

Yes, thank you for sharing the list. I've read more than I thought I might have:
The Crucible
Fahrenheit 451
Palace Walk
The Haunting of Hill House
To Kill a Mockingbird
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie
84, Charing Cross Road
Bless Me, Ultima
The Summer Book
The House of the Spirits
The Joy Luck Club
The Remains of the Day
The English Patient
The God of Small Things

Feb 21, 4:14pm Top

>168 msf59: Hi, Mark! Books are my salvation in these dark times.

>169 ronincats: You are way ahead of me, Roni! :) No treat sticks long enough, no.

>170 jjmcgaffey: Hi, Jen! Yes, $15 for an ARC is a bit much. I can wait.

>170 jjmcgaffey: Glad you enjoyed it, Karen!

>171 witchyrichy: I see we have quite a few shared books. I think my favorite of those on both our lists is House of the Spirits. Have you read her other novels? I think I've read everything by her except Zorro and the memoir Paula.

Feb 21, 4:28pm Top

>174 Storeetllr: Awesome news! I love Neverwhere. So so good.

Feb 21, 4:44pm Top

Got an email from Harry Bingham this morning. All the novels in the Fiona Griffiths mystery series are 99 cents (except today the first in the series - Talking to the Dead - which is free) on Amazon. This is a fantastic series, set in Wales, and featuring an intriguing female constable/detective with the Cardiff police. Superb writing, exciting plots, fantastic characters - I love this series so much I've preordered the new one that comes out this summer.

Feb 21, 4:59pm Top

>176 Storeetllr: Thanks for the info Mary. How many of them do you think I should get? I've just got the first one (obviously) but I'm wondering l how many I should try as they're only 99p?

Feb 21, 6:54pm Top

Well, I love the series and have all five, plus I've preordered the sixth, and I'm a cheapskate and almost never buy books anymore. Have you started Talking to the Dead yet?

Feb 21, 7:15pm Top

No - but when I bothered to investigate further and saw there were only 5 in the series, I figured I might as well go ahead and get them all. For some reason I had visions of it being a 20 book series which would have given me more of a problem!

Feb 21, 8:20pm Top

Okay, you convinced me. I put the first Fiona Griffiths book on my Kindle.

Feb 21, 8:32pm Top

>179 lunacat: Oh, good! I hope you enjoy them! Fiona is a different sort of detective, and I like different. Plus I like that it's set in Cardiff, which isn't a usual setting.

>180 ronincats: Yay! Hope you enjoy it, Roni!

Feb 21, 8:34pm Top

I got the first one - it sounds interesting but may not be my cup of tea. Worth checking out, though.

Feb 21, 9:10pm Top

Well, now that I have all five residing on my Kindle, I really should get to Talking to the Dead.

Thanks for the heads up!

Feb 22, 8:16am Top

>173 Storeetllr: I haven't read any more Allende but it sounds like I should.

>174 Storeetllr: Yay for Neverwhere, an absolute favorite!

Happy Wednesday!

Feb 22, 6:59pm Top

Hi Mary, I somehow lost track of you but I have now caught up and replaced my star. Poor Nickel, I guess she just doesn't want to share her space with another bird. I have read the first Fiona Griffths book and when I finished I immediately went to Amazon and picked up the next four in the series. I loved Talking to the Dead!

Edited: Feb 25, 1:07pm Top

>175 lunacat: Hey, Jenny - I must have missed this post of yours. Yes, it is awesome news! Neverwhere is one of my RRO (ReRead Often) books, and I've always wished for a sequel.

>182 jjmcgaffey: Hi, Jenn - If you prefer cozies, then Talking to the Dead is definitely not going to be your cuppa! On the other hand, if you don't mind grittier stuff, it's wonderful! Once you read it, let me know your thoughts? (Also, where are you? I looked for your thread in the Threadbook but couldn't find it.)

>183 coppers: Heh - I HOPE you enjoy them, Jo, now that you bought them all. Though it's not a huge investment, just in case they aren't you cuppa.

>184 witchyrichy: Yes! Allende and Gaiman are both favorite authors - you can't go wrong with either (though I admit I had trouble getting into American Gods). Happy weekend, Karen!

>185 DeltaQueen50: So glad you found me again, Judy! Yes, Nickel is jealous, but I moved Rosie way across the room, and she has settled down a bit. I think I just had them too close to each other. Also glad you are a Fiona fan! This is only one of two series where I've preordered a book, cheapskate that I am, so you have to know I love it!

Feb 25, 12:57pm Top

Just saw a trailer for the adaptation of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, which is one of my 5-star books from a couple years ago. Looks good - really hope they didn't mess it up.


Feb 26, 5:47pm Top

>187 Storeetllr: It is funny Mary but that is always my feeling when a film is being made of a book I loved. By mess it up I suppose we mean our vision of it!

Have a lovely Sunday.

Feb 26, 10:02pm Top

>186 Storeetllr: I'm in Club Read this year (as I was last year as well) - can't manage two threads, so I'm only there. http://www.librarything.com/topic/244953

Haven't tried the book yet. I do generally prefer cozies, or police procedurals, to the gritty ones...so I'll have to see.

Feb 26, 10:05pm Top

Happy Sunday, Mary. I miss seeing you around, my friend.

I am with you on Henrietta Lacks. Let's hope they give it the adaptation it deserves.

Feb 27, 8:29pm Top

Henrietta Lacks has been on my shelf for awhile but with your recommendations and that of my RL book group, it has moved up the TBR pile. Guess I should read it before the movie.

Edited: Feb 28, 2:45pm Top

>188 PaulCranswick: Hi, Paul! So nice to see you here! Hope your week is going well. Yes, there haven't been many adaptations that are half as good as the book. A few that come to mind are Enchanted April, the BBC adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, and Princess Bride (which was actually better than the book, imo).

>189 jjmcgaffey: Thanks, Jenn! I'll be by to check out your thread in a few. I like procedurals too, though I haven't read many lately. I used to read cozies, but these days I prefer grittier stuff.

>190 msf59: Hi, Mark! I have been over to your thread often but don't always comment. Same with most threads. I guess I've become a bit of a lurker these days. I do like all your owl talk & pics though!

>191 witchyrichy: Oh, yes, Karen! I think you would love Henrietta Lacks! It is highly compelling on many different levels.

Mar 1, 4:04pm Top

Amazon's Kindle First books came out today. I've been a bit disappointed in the offerings the past few months and haven't chosen any, but this month I found one I think I'm really going to enjoy! Hemingway Didn't Say That: The Truth Behind Familiar Quotations.

So, did Chekhov really say, "Any idiot can survive a crisis; it's the day-to-day living that wears you out"? And did Churchill really say, "Whoever is not a socialist when he is 20 has no heart; whoever is not a conservative when he is 30 has no brain"? No? Really? I'm shocked. Shocked I tell you!

Here's a cool article about the phenomenon of Wrongly Attributed Statements for anyone who, like me, prefers not to misquote someone, wrongly attribute a quote, or, even worse, quote something that never was actually said. http://www.chronicle.com/article/Who-Really-Said-That-/141559/

Mar 2, 2:36pm Top

>193 Storeetllr: I thought long and hard about that one, Mary, but ended up going with the legal thriller, A Criminal Defense, which doesn't appear to have an LT presence yet. Like you, I haven't been thrilled with the selections lately. Still, free is free.

Mar 2, 3:00pm Top

I think I can share it with you, Julia, if you want to read it, but I'll want it back to keep for reference.

Mar 2, 3:00pm Top

And yes, free is free!

Mar 2, 11:38pm Top

I went with the science fiction selection for Kindle First, although I have reservations about its quality. Yours sounds interesting though, Mary.

Mar 3, 3:46pm Top

Hi, Roni - I was torn between the mystery, the scifi and this one. I figured I could probably borrow the others from the library, but I thought I'd want this one on my virtual shelf to refer to.

Mar 3, 7:06pm Top

I thought I should unlurk and say "Hi", Mary. How are the moving plans going?

Mar 3, 7:21pm Top

Hi, Judy! Glad you unlurked. I've been lurking a lot myself lately. So, I'm continuing to discard, organize and pack, but I haven't actually looked for a place yet except online. It's a 2+ hour drive down to Pueblo, and I don't want to have to go more than a couple of times, so I thought I'd wait until mid-March unless I see something online that I think I really want. Most places are available "immediately," and I don't want to move until mid-April, so I doubt if landlords would be willing to hold them for me until then.

Mar 5, 9:44am Top

>195 Storeetllr: That is a very kind offer, Mary! Unfortunately I don't have a Kindle, I have a Kobo, so I don't think the lending feature would work. But I will look forward to reading your thoughts about it when you read it.

Mar 5, 3:12pm Top

>201 rosalita: Probably not. Curious as to how you are reading Kindle Firsts on your Kobo. Do you download and convert to whatever format Kobo reads using Calibre or one of those programs? Just curious.

Mar 5, 3:12pm Top

So I saw Dreiser's The Financier on Amazon for Kindle for free, and, notwithstanding the fact that An American Tragedy was the reason I refused to read classics for years after I got out of high school and still shudder when I think of the experience, I picked it up. And I've read the first few chapters already. And, strangely, I am enjoying it.

This is why I believe no one who isn't majoring in English literature at a university should be forced to read classics unless the entire class is dedicated to one work of fiction. (Our English class read Hamlet in my junior year of high school, and mainly because of the teacher, it was magical! I don't think I would have enjoyed it if it hadn't been a class project.)

Mar 5, 7:23pm Top

>202 Storeetllr: Yes, I download them and use Calibre to convert to .epub format, which is the standard format for all e-readers except Kindle. It's a small hassle, but free is hard to beat as we've already discussed (sometimes I'm a broken record).

Mar 7, 6:44pm Top

>192 Storeetllr: re >188 PaulCranswick: I agree on all. I would also add Howl's Moving Castle to the list of movies that are better than books (opinions vary.)

Mar 7, 8:17pm Top

Hello, Mary!

Mar 8, 1:38pm Top

>205 Morphidae: Huh. I enjoyed the movie of Howl's Moving Castle - it's a great Miyazaki - but it's not DWJ's story at all and I prefer hers. Which may be because I've read it so many times I almost have it memorized - I do tend to prefer the version I read first, when I encounter two versions of a story. I liked the movie a lot better when I pretended it was something completely unrelated to my beloved book. Airships and dragon-shifting don't belong...and Wales does, which Miyazaki left out. It's a great story in and of itself, it's just not HMC.

The only movie I've ever felt was better than the book was The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe - the book is very fairy tale (of course they go off into the woods, that's what the story demands). The movie fleshes out the characters a lot better, and gives them reasons for their choices. On the other hand, it was better - and I've been afraid to watch the rest of the series in case they weren't better! Hmm - that kind of knocks a hole in my theory about first is better, since I've also got the whole Narnia series nearly memorized. First is better unless second is _way_ better, maybe.

Admittedly I watch very few movies, so don't get a lot of chances to compare. But the two movies I pounced upon with delight because they were of favorite books were...really not good - not the book, and not interesting of themselves. My Side of the Mountain and Mrs. Miniver - I didn't even finish watching the latter, I don't remember if I watched all of the former. School project indeed, hmmph. And I didn't think much of the Lord of the Rings movies - One was OK (though I'd have preferred the walk to Weathertop over wizards wire work), Two decided making fun of Gimli was more important than being true to the story, and I haven't watched Three (and don't intend to).

Mar 8, 1:52pm Top

>207 jjmcgaffey: Whereas I saw the Howl's Moving Castle movie first and thought the book so unpleasant I barely finished it!

Mar 8, 1:54pm Top

Oh yeah, if you started with the movie... see "not the same story"!

Mar 8, 5:35pm Top

>206 alcottacre: Hi, Stasia! Congrats on your graduation and welcome back to LT!

>205 Morphidae:, >207 jjmcgaffey: I'm ashamed to admit I have never read nor watched Howl's Moving Castle so can't really comment. I do agree that the BBC adaptation of Lion, Witch and Wardrobe was wonderful (I also saw the film but didn't like it nearly as much). I also agree partially with Jenn about LOTR, which books I reread at least a dozen times between the late 60s and when the films came out.

The extended versions of the three films are better than the theater-release versions, but they skipped so much (and added so much) that I couldn't help but be disappointed. Two of the things that bothered me most at first were the omission of the trek through the Old Forest, the meeting with Tom Bombadil, and the barrow wrights, as well as the change of characters giving Arwen a larger part than she had in the books (though that no longer bothers me). I would also have liked a more faithful rendition of the meeting between the hobbits and the ents. After considering it, though, I realized it would have had to be at least a dozen movies at 3+ hours each to faithfully follow the books so decided to enjoy them for what they are, a separate and only loosely related story. I do appreciate the visualization of Middle Earth, though.

Mar 8, 5:39pm Top

>204 rosalita: Oops, missed your post, Julia! I love Calibre too, and the fact it's free makes it just about a perfect program!

Mar 8, 5:49pm Top

Etched in Bone, the latest book in the Courtyard of the Others series, came out yesteray! I preordered the audio version so started listening right away, though I had a doctor's appointment and then had to shop for groceries, so only got about 1/4 done. So far, so good. I'll be listening the rest of the day to the rest of it, as soon as my headache goes away.

So, I'm going down to Pueblo tomorrow to look at places to rent! I've got one appointment and have left voicemail messages at a rental management company and with landlords of a couple of other houses. None of them look perfect online, but I have to start somewhere.

Mar 9, 12:48am Top

>212 Storeetllr: Shh! Don't say anything! I have one more overdue library book to read before I can start it! :D

Mar 9, 1:12am Top

You're a stronger woman than I am, Morphy. I'm almost at the end. And a long drive tomorrow. I may have to re-listen to it. lol

Mar 9, 6:48am Top

I'm one of *those* who think the LotR movies are way better than the books. I think it's partly because I came to the books as an adult and don't have the sentimental attachment to them that childhood reading nostalgia can impart...

Mar 9, 11:49am Top

>215 scaifea: I guess I don't think of the movies as better or worse than the books - to me they're different works, with lots of overlap. My attitude comes out of the history of comic books rebooting series every so often, I guess.

Mar 10, 6:55am Top

>216 drneutron: That's generally my feeling toward movies-from-books, too (it's a very Greco-Roman way to think about stories, too, by the way). With LorR, though, I guess everyone around me had talked the books up so much that I was just a little disappointed that I didn't absolutely LOVE them when I finally did read them. And then, well, I'm a bit fan of Peter Jackson, and I just loved what he did with the stories. But, yeah, that's not a typical response from me. My students used to be shocked that I really liked the Brad Pitt Troy movie - why not? It's fun. Who cares that it's not the exact same story as in the original?

Morning, Mary!

Mar 10, 10:49am Top

>217 scaifea: This from the woman who froths at the mouth at the mere mention of the name Riordan. ;)

Mar 10, 9:29pm Top

I hope you found something you liked in Pueblo, Mary. Keep us posted, please. I'm planning a quick trip to Denver at the end of the month. Can you reserve either Saturday or Sunday (March 25, 26) for a meetup? Your friends want to hear more about your move and wish you well. If I lived nearby I'd even pitch in and help you pack or whatever you need. You get to pick the place and time…somewhere near you for convenience. Surprise us! I'll be in touch when the dates get closer. In the meantime, good luck with your moving prep.

Mar 11, 2:18pm Top

>218 Morphidae: Morphy: There's a difference between playing with a mythology while still being faithful to the original ideas and precepts, and bastardizing it while clearly not having any understanding of what the original stories meant.

Mar 11, 2:34pm Top

Hi Mary! Did you find anything you liked in Pueblo? I look forward to hopefully seeing you soon!

Mar 11, 2:36pm Top

Hi, Amber and Jim! Great points from both of you, but I think with respect to LoTR I have to go with what Jim said, so I guess I'm thinking like a Greco-Roman. Yay.

Amber, you liked Brad Pitt's Troy? Funny but true: I bought the DVD years ago because I was reading about Troy and saw it on sale but have never watched it. Now I am going to have to!

>219 Donna828: Hi, Donna! Thanks for your kind wishes. I didn't have a lot of luck on my first visit to Pueblo, but we're just now coming into the season when a lot of people think about moving and rentals start coming on the market in greater numbers, and I am in touch with some agents who handle rentals in the area, so am hopeful I'll find something soon.

I looked at about six places while I was there on Thursday, only two that I went inside. It turned out all the places except one were in sketchy neighborhoods. The first place was across the street from a crack house, and there was a graffiti covered garage a couple of doors down, and the other place was on a busy street and was ugly as sin inside and out. I love diversity and don't need fancy, but I don't want squalor and/or danger! I think I'm going to have to pay a little more than I had hoped for a decent place in a good area.

I've got us penciled in for a meetup the weekend of 3/25-26. Either day works for me for lunch or dinner. If you'd like to try Sahara, the Mediterranean restaurant where Jim, Anne and I had a meetup a few months ago, and where Jo and I have met for lunch, that would be great! It's in a strip mall on the south side of Arapahoe just a block or two east of the 25. No nearby bookstore, but the food is amazing! If not, maybe you, Jo, Anne or Kris can suggest somewhere else that works.

Edited: Mar 11, 2:44pm Top

>221 AMQS: Oops! Hi, Anne. You must have snuck in while I was writing my last post! :) Yes, I look forward to our meetup! No, no luck so far on finding a place to live. I've still got over a month and a half, so I'm not panicking yet. Stressing, yes, but not panicking.

>220 scaifea: I assume this Riordan is among the latter group? I'll have to look him (her?) up as I don't believe I've ever read/watched anything he's done.

ETA Oh! Just looked it up. I know who that is! I've never read any of the Percy Jackson books. I assume you aren't a fan?

Mar 11, 2:43pm Top

>223 Storeetllr: For me, yes, he's in the latter group. He has a wildly popular middle grade series in which he (ab)uses Greek Mythological characters.

Mar 11, 2:44pm Top

Haha, (ab)uses. Love it.

Mar 11, 3:14pm Top

A meetup at Sahara? Count me in!!

Sorry your trip to Pueblo wasn't more fruitful...

Mar 11, 4:02pm Top

I just discovered a new podcast! The first episode of Decode analyzes media bias & discusses how the way the media frames the news skews perceptions and causes cynicism to spiral. One of the presenters is the guy who does The British History podcast, a favorite of mine. (History of Britain from prehistoric times in minute detail.)

Here's the link if you're interested.

Mar 11, 4:04pm Top

Hi, Jo! Yes, Sahara would be good, though I'll be happy to see everyone no matter where we decide to meet up!

Yeah, disappointing, but I'm still hopeful.

Mar 11, 9:10pm Top

Sahara sounds good to me, too. Let's do it! We will have more time to talk if we don't have a bookstore to distract us. My son Mike is busy on Saturday morning, so lunch on that day would work out great for me…but I can also be available on Sunday. We are flying this time and won't be leaving until Monday morning.

It's too bad you didn't find a place in Pueblo, but at least you ruled out some areas. By all means, find a safe part of town to live in. I think you are so brave moving to a brand new community on your own. I wish Denver and vicinity wasn't so darned expensive. I'm crossing my fingers for you, Mary, to find an appealing abode at an affordable price.

Mar 11, 9:42pm Top

>227 Storeetllr: I love that podcast, Mary. As a student of history I never tire of having essentially the same stories being retold to me in slightly different ways and from diverging viewpoints.

Have a lovely weekend. xx

Edited: Mar 11, 11:48pm Top

>229 Donna828: Great! So, so far you and Jo are good with Sahara. I know Anne enjoyed it when we met up with Jim (drneutron) last year and hope she can make it. How about Kris? Anybody else going to be in the Denver area the last weekend in March?

>230 PaulCranswick: It's really a great podcast for history lovers, Paul! I kind of stopped listening in around the ninth century, just before Alfred came on the scene, but I'm sure I'll get back to it. I've wanted to subscribe so I can get the extra content, but it's a bit too expensive for me just now, even though it would be quite reasonable - if I were, you know, still earning money.

Mar 11, 11:56pm Top

I've spent the day culling books and packing the ones to donate and the ones I want to bring with me. It's so hard to get rid of some of the books - the ones I loved, even though I can get them as an ebook if I even want to read them again - but I've tried to be strong, especially since I'm donating them to the library where others will be able to buy and enjoy them. It's still hard. :)

So far, the books I've got on the Donate 2017 Part 2 list number 140! http://www.librarything.com/catalog/Storeetllr That and the 276 I've already donated and a dozen that were too damaged to give away comes to over 400 books! I still have over 1,000 left but hope to whittle that number down to around 800, which is a heck of a lot better than the 1,400 or so I've been lugging around with me for five or six moves over the past 30 years!

Mar 13, 9:36pm Top

Hi Mary, how nice that you have an LT get-together to look forward to. It's a wonderful thing to meet up with people that we talk to every day!

Mar 13, 10:11pm Top

Hi, Mary! Looks like you have your hands full with your book culling. Hard to cut ties, eh? I do not look forward to that day.

I hope you are doing well, my friend.

Mar 14, 2:30pm Top

Hi, Judy! Yes, I love our meetups! We have a really great group here in the Denver area, and I've missed meeting up with them over the past half year or so.

Oh, Mark. It is so hard! Especially books, and especially for one (like me) who is a natural-born hoarder.

Mar 14, 2:38pm Top

Penguin's First-to-Read program has a new list of books to request. I've asked for only one: The Space Between the Stars. Here's the blurb: "A fabulous debut novel that is part women's fiction, part science fiction, and an enthralling exploration of love, loss, and what it means to be human." - http://www.firsttoread.com/Books/BookDetails.aspx?id=750854&cdi=124A1AB94B51...

I love the work of Marley and Tepper, who have also written some amazing feminist scifi (The Terrorists of Irustan-Marley; and Gate to Women's Country and Grass-Tepper) and am hopeful Corlett will become another favorite.

Edited: Mar 18, 9:23pm Top

Oh, God, how I hate moving!

ETA that, when I wrote this post the morning of 3/16 after a sleepless night, I had no rental prospects happening and was experiencing pains in gut from anxiety.

Then, as of last night (3/17) - two days later - I had 3 (count 'em, THREE!) rental properties from which to choose. All were 3+1s with lovely wood floors and large living rooms and dining rooms. Two were older homes with lots of wonderful craftsman-type touches. The one I chose was built in the 60s and is a lot plainer, but it is $300/month less and has an attached garage. I can move in April 16. So relieved!

Mar 19, 2:41am Top

Excellent! It sounds like a lovely place to live - and the neighborhood is good?

Of course, you still have all the problems of packing up and actually moving - but at least now you know where you're moving _to_, which helps a lot.

Mar 19, 1:12pm Top

Thanks, Jenn! I've been told by independent sources that this particular neighborhood is good. Pueblo is a struggling city with a lot of poverty, not a lot of jobs, and pockets of crime, so one must be vigilant even in good areas, but that's the same everywhere. I've lived in not-so-great places and had no trouble, then moved to a "good" area and had my car stolen from my driveway, so ya never know!

Here's a pic of the front of the house in summer. Right now, it's winter bleak as only a Colorado winter without snow can be. :)

Mar 19, 1:46pm Top

Happy Sunday, Mary. I like the look of the new house. Thanks for sharing. Is there plenty of places for bird-feeders in the back? Grins...

When is the move?

Edited: Mar 19, 4:20pm Top

Hurrah, I'm so glad to hear that you've got a house organised! How fabulous. It looks like the house is set in a lovely space with the greenery around.

Edited: Mar 19, 2:42pm Top

Happy Sunday to you, too, Mark! Yes! Lots and LOTS of room in back for bird feeders, a straw-bale garden, maybe even an aviary! I can start moving in on 4/16.

Winter View

Summer View

Thanks, Jenny! It does have a lot of green space around it. And thanks for the reminder. Sometimes I forget.

Mar 19, 2:47pm Top

So happy for you, Mary. I know finding a place must be a tremendous relief. It looks very inviting and I can picture you sitting outside on your patio with a summer drink and and book in hand. I love that big tree!

Mar 19, 2:55pm Top

Congratulations on finding a place, Mary!

Edited: Mar 19, 3:51pm Top

Thanks, Judy and Stasia! Yes, it is a huge relief. Maybe I can start sleeping and reading again, now that the worry of whether I'll be able to find a place to live after April 30 is off my mind. Packing is ongoing, but that is doable and doesn't cause quite as much stress as house hunting.

That's a great tree, isn't it! There's another in front. I love trees and foliage around houses, and so many of the (less expensive) places I looked at in Pueblo were barren. I mean, if I wanted to live in a desert, I'd move to the Mojave!

Mar 19, 5:10pm Top

Congratulations on finding a good place to rent, Mary! I know it's a big relief to have it settled.

Mar 19, 5:22pm Top

Oh, congrats on the rental! I looks lovely! Did you say this is in Colorado?

Mar 19, 5:30pm Top

>242 Storeetllr: Thanks for sharing the backyard photos. I like it. Big old tree and everything.

Mar 19, 7:40pm Top

Thanks, Roni and Amber! I can't begin to express just HOW big a relief it is!

Amber, yes, it's in Colorado. Pueblo is about 125 miles south of Denver and is where they hold the Colorado State Fair. It's the lowest elevation of all the places I considered (Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Farmington, Colorado Springs), which is why I started looking there (I haven't acclimated to the high altitude of even Denver after living all my life at or near sea level). It's also a lot less expensive to rent/buy there, mostly because it's been an economically distressed area. Now that marijuana has been legalized in CO, rents and home prices have gone up as they have everywhere, but it's still more reasonable than, say, Denver, Boulder, even Buena Vista, where my sister is working now.

Glad you approve, Mr. Mark! :) I'm planning to plant a butterfly garden and put in a bird feeder and birdbath and hope to have plenty of wildlife visiting. Currently the yard is planted with lilac bushes (my favorites!) and some kind of round berry bush, as well as bulbs and some native plants where the large tree roots in front have broken up the pipes. I may also try to create a secure place under the patio overhang using fine netting where my parrots can hang with me outside on warm summer days.

Mar 19, 7:48pm Top

Congratulations Mary on your successful home hunt. The place looks neat and cosy if those two can possibly go together.

I am sure you will be happy there and you know well that all of us here will wish it so.

Mar 19, 7:51pm Top

>239 Storeetllr: Very nice! Congratulations again!

Mar 19, 8:37pm Top

Thanks, Paul! It's neat because I haven't moved any of my crap things in yet. LOL But it's really nice inside, and I think I can make it a cozily serene place for me and the girls (parrots Nickel and Rosie). Here are a few pics of the inside.

View from back bedroom into dining room and Entry to Kitchen on left and entry to living room on right

Weirdly distorted shot of the living room - tiny vestibule and front door at left of picture; entrance to dining room in center

From front bedroom/office through to tiny front vestibule

Thanks, Jo! See you Saturday!!! Woot! Do we have a time yet? Do you know if Anne is going to be able to make it? I better go look at her and Donna's threads...

Mar 20, 6:46am Top

Oh, gosh, I love the paint color and those floors!

Mar 20, 9:04am Top

Nice place! I'm curious about your comment re: legalization and rent increases. Why is that? Higher legal employment means more money circulating, so landlords can charge more?

Mar 20, 9:37am Top

Congratulations on finding a place to live, Mary! That must be a tremendous load off your mind. And the house looks darling.

Mar 20, 10:13am Top

Your house looks lovely! What a find. I hope everything continues going smoothly for you.

Edited: Mar 20, 12:39pm Top

>253 scaifea: Thanks, Amber. I love the wood floors too! Real wood, btw, not laminate. Shows slight damage (scuffs, scratches) from prior use but nothing that bothers me.

>254 drneutron: Hi, Jim! Sorry, I meant that with legalization of grass, more people are coming to Colorado to take advantage of that and there is a greater need for housing, and that means yes, landlords can charge more, so of course they do!

>255 rosalita: Thanks, Julia! It is a load off my mind, that's for sure! It's a 1960s kind of house - old and plain and without a lot of charm (except the wood floors). I'm not a fan of mid-century, having grown up then. I like older houses, like from the 30s and 40s and earlier. But it is nice, and has everything I need in a house, and those wood floors and the yards! And a good neighborhood. So I'm very very happy! Also, it has a guest room! (hint, hint)

>256 lunacat: Thanks, Jenny. It was a great find, and I feel so fortunate!

I'm taking a much needed break for a day or so (after having driven 500 miles/10 hours in 2 days). Then will come the next stage - packing and getting this house clean and ready for the next tenant to come in. But I'm really looking forward to that now.

ETA that the hint hint about the guest room is for all my friends!

Mar 20, 1:52pm Top

>257 Storeetllr: Ah, supply and demand problems!

Mar 20, 9:09pm Top

Mary, I am so relieved you found such a nice place to live. Oh my, that big tree in the backyard calls for a comfy chair or hammock and a book! Love the wood floors. The house looks like it's in great condition. When I come back in the summer, I may take the southern route home and come by and see you. I have much more freedom when I drive (by myself)!

Yes, we are on for Saturday at Sahara. Would 12:30 work for you? I'm waiting for a definite yes from Anne and Kris. Joanne is in! Yay for meetups!

Mar 20, 9:29pm Top

The house looks in excellent condition, Mary! So nice to know you can just move your stuff in without a lot of work on the place.

Mar 21, 2:19am Top

Lovely floors! It does look rather plain, but once your stuff is in it I suspect it will be very comfortable. And that yard is fantastic.

Mar 22, 12:23pm Top

The house looks to be in good shape and the yard is wonderful. Is that an old man tree or a Gaia-type lady tree? Sometimes you can tell right away, sometimes you have to sit with it awhile. :D

Edited: Mar 22, 1:16pm Top

>258 drneutron: Yup!

>259 Donna828: Thanks, Donna! Yes, 12:30 at Sahara is perfect! You are most welcome and I'd be honored if you'd spend the night with me in Pueblo!

>260 ronincats: Yes it is, Roni! I will need to put liners in the cupboards, cabinets and drawers - there are a lot of them, too, which is good in most ways except I'll need a LOT of lining! - but otherwise it's pretty much ready to live in.

>261 jjmcgaffey: Thanks, Jenn. I love the floors too - bare floors (wood, stone, even lino) was one of the things I really wanted in a house. I know carpets make the place warmer in winter, but I just don't like wall-to-wall, preferring to use area rugs. Also, easier to clean up the birds' messes.

>262 Morphidae: Hi, Morphy - hope you are feeling better!

I hardly noticed the trees (there are two: one in front and one in back). At a guess, I'd have to say both are old men. The one in front for sure, because it's already messed up the underground pipes with its roots so the area nearest the sidewalk doesn't get watered. Not sure yet about the one in back.

I thought I was the only one who assigns gender to trees and other vegetation. And rocks. lol

Mar 22, 2:05pm Top

There's a game going on over on Twitter and FB that I thought was fun. Take the first sentence of any book and add "and then the murders began" to it. Instantly it's supposed to make it better! Or so the game goes.

Stately, plump Buck Mulligan came from the stairhead, bearing a bowl of lather on which a mirror and a razor lay crossed. And then the murders began.

Can you guess which book that line is from?

Ulysses by James Joyce


Mar 22, 7:12pm Top

>263 Storeetllr: I just assign gender to trees. Well, and cars though they are usually, but not always, female.

Mar 23, 6:45am Top

All caught up here, Mary. Hooray for finding the right house - it looks lovely, and those floors are gorgeous.

Mar 24, 10:24am Top

>265 Morphidae: I tend to assign genders to a lot of things. Strange.

>266 Crazymamie: Thanks, Mamie! I do love the floors!

I drove down to Pueblo yesterday to sign the lease, and I've been worrying ever since about how I'm going to make it work. Like, there are three small bedrooms - one for me, one for the birds, and one a guest room. But that doesn't leave any place for an office. Or a library. There's a really big living room, though, and I guess I'll use one end of it for my office and also put the bookcases in there. I tend to use my laptop anywhere I happen to be (right now I'm in bed; often I use it when I'm sitting in my recliner in the birds' area), but I would love to have a separate room for my files, office equipment, and photography paraphernalia.

This morning, I awoke to a a few inches of snow! Looks cold out there too after a couple of weeks of tee-shirt weather.

Mar 24, 1:13pm Top

>267 Storeetllr: I hope you can make the logistics work out. Any chance you can store some of the office stuff in the guest room, as presumably it won't be in use as much as the other rooms? Or are you hoping to make a lovely, elegant room so that wouldn't fit in?

Mar 24, 1:41pm Top

Hi, Jenny! Yeah, I don't know what I'm going to do. I kind of decided to just move in and figure it out after - once I get a feel for the place. I'd love to use one of the bedrooms for a combination office/guest room, but none of them are big enough to do double duty and be comfortable.

Mar 24, 2:30pm Top

Oh, I love that part of moving to a new place - figuring out what goes where and how to make it your own! But I also get that it can be stressful. I have confidence that you'll make it work out fabulously!

Mar 25, 5:48pm Top

My parents put a murphy bed in the guest room - it looks really nice (wooden underside, and matching pillars for the rest of it). When it's not in use, it's the sewing room/ironing room/access to the garden/etc. When guests are here, the sewing table is in the closet and the bed is down, and there's not a lot more to the room (one chair and some bookcases). Something you might look in to - though storage of your stuff when guests are there is a question.

Mar 25, 7:28pm Top

>270 scaifea: Thanks for the vote of confidence, Amber! I've been mood swinging from excited anticipation to nail-biting anxiety over it. Three weeks never seemed so long a time. On the other hand, I'll need at least that long to get my stuff in order and packed.

>271 jjmcgaffey: What a good idea, Jenn! A murphy bed might just be the answer. I'm going to check it out. Thanks!

Mar 25, 8:53pm Top

I love the looks of the hardwood floors in the new place, Mary. I am a sucker for those!

Mar 26, 9:33am Top

Oooh, a Murphy Bed! What an excellent idea!!

Mar 26, 10:19am Top

>269 Storeetllr: That is pretty much my approach to such things to. When you life in a place you sort of just grow into it.

Have a lovely Sunday.

Mar 26, 11:29am Top

>271 jjmcgaffey:, >274 scaifea: So, it turns out Murphy beds cost a bit more than I can afford, even used ones! Unless I can find one for considerably less than $1,000, I'm going to have to come up with another plan.

>273 alcottacre: Me too, Stasia! Hardwood floors are mostly essential for parrots. Yes, I've done it with carpeting, which is nice in winter as it keeps the house warmer, but the stress of keeping the birds from pooping on a carpet is not worth it.

>275 PaulCranswick: Thanks, Paul! Hope your weekend was relaxing and fun. I try to keep in mind that I'll grow into a new place, just as I did in this one, but then I look around and see how messily this place grew organically from when I first moved in, and I shudder. Most of what is making the mess is not clutter but stuff I use daily (or would use if, you know, it wasn't in such disarray) but which stays out because there is no place to put it away because I currently have limited storage. I want to plan and organize my new place before I move in so it doesn't evolve into a clutterfest.

Mar 26, 2:40pm Top

Well...a lot has happened since I was last here. Congrats on finding your place in Pueblo! You will grow into it, I'm sure!

Hope the meetup went well. I remember ours last summer fondly.

Mar 26, 5:34pm Top

You need to find yourself a Container Store. You don't need to buy every thing they suggest. But they have some fabulous storage ideas that you can then work around with your supplies and budget.

Mar 26, 7:40pm Top

>78 Donna828: Hello Mary, I just noticed in Donna's (Donna828) thread that you are moving to Pueblo. I live in Walsenburg, just south and 45 minutes away so I thought I would say Hi and be available for a meetup when your life settles down a bit . I think we have a lot of books and authors in common and can commiserate about the political situation these days.

I don't have a thread since I tried and always faltered midway through the year, but I follow Donna's thread and participate in a few groups. Anyway, let me know if you ever want to get together. Maybe Becky (labwriter) in Canon City would join us.

P.S. Your new house looks great. I think you will really appreciate the shade from those big trees in the summer. I am at 6300 feet so quite a bit higher than Pueblo.

Mar 27, 6:47am Top

Have you thought of a DIY Murphy bed? I did a quick search and it looks like that may be much less expensive...

Mar 27, 4:43pm Top

Hi Mary! Three months into 2017 and I finally find my way over to your thread. I see that you are ahead of me in Howard's Johannes Cabal series! Such fun reading, isn't it? I am hoping to read - actually, listen to the audiobook - of book 4 in the series in early April.

I see you have been busy getting ready for your move next month. So glad to see you were able to find a place you like in your price range.

Mar 27, 9:36pm Top

>277 witchyrichy: Hey, there, Karen! Thanks, I think it will be a good home for me and the girls. The meetup was lovely - so good to see the Denver gang again! I'll miss them, though really Pueblo is only 2 hours south. Next time you get out this way, please be sure to let me know so I can plan to come up!

>278 Morphidae: Good idea, Morphy. One of the best things about this house is it has gobs of storage! A good sized closet in each bedroom, a little closet in the bathroom, a linen closet just outside the bathroom, a lot of cupboards and cabinets in the kitchen, the laundry room has room for storage, the garage has room for storage, and there's a shed in the back yard. If I can't find a place for everything and have room to spare, I'll be calling the folks at A&E who schedule episodes of Hoarders.

>279 dallenbaugh: Oh, wow, Donna, how exciting! Thank you, I would love to get together with you (and Becky if she can make it) for a meetup when I move to Pueblo! How do you like Walsenburg? I looked (online) at a place to rent there, but the altitude is higher even than Denver, so I decided against it, but I'd love to visit sometime. Thank you so much for reaching out, and I look forward to meeting you and talking about books and authors and other less appealing things like the political situation. BTW, I already checked to see how far from my house to the Pueblo library - 2.7 miles and about 7 minutes. Priorities.

>280 scaifea: Oh, Amber! I WISH I were a DIYer! As it is, I've got at least half a dozen DIY projects in various stages of non-completion.

>281 lkernagh: Hi, Lori! Thanks for visiting! (Have I visited your 2017 thread? I haven't been doing a lot on LT, mainly because of packing and moving, but I have tried to get around to everyone's thread occasionally, or at least once. :) Yes, I love the Cabal series and am hoping really hard that the latest one (book 5) is not the last one.

Mar 27, 10:01pm Top

>282 Storeetllr: Yes, priorities I know since I live 1 mile from our library. Walsenburg is in a depressed area and is struggling to emerge into better times so I think you will be happier in Pueblo, especially since it is lower, but it suits me and my pocket book and is close to things I love like hiking trails, mountains, and a state park. I have been here for 22 years now and was the library director in Walsenburg for a couple of years then worked in the library in La Veta for several years. I moved from Boulder County way back in 1995.

I'm glad you liked Talking to the Dead. It is on my Kindle and I hope to read it soon.

Edited: Mar 30, 8:01pm Top

>283 dallenbaugh: Less expensive Walsenburg would have suited my pocketbook better too, and being near hiking trails and a state park would have been great, but the altitude was the deciding factor. I can always visit, though, as I don't get altitude sickness unless I am at an altitude of 7,000+ feet for longer than a day.

I love the Fiona Griffiths series! You've got quite a treat ahead of you with Talking to the Dead! Can't wait to hear what you think of it.

Mar 30, 8:00pm Top

I won an Early Reviewers copy of The Whole Art of Detection: Lost Mysteries of Sherlock Holmes by Lindsay Faye from the March 2017 batch! Woo hoo! I have enjoyed everything I've read by Faye so far and expect I will love this one too.

Mar 31, 12:34pm Top

Mary, I'm so glad the other Donna reached out to you. She is a delightful person online and I want to meet up with you guys when you get settled in and I come out for my longer summer visit. Becky, too! Oh what fun...

Apr 1, 3:21pm Top

Me too, Donna! I can't wait to meet her, and Becky, and it would be wonderful if we could all have a Pueblo meetup in the summer when you are in Colorado again!

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