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MickyFine Swashbuckles Through 2017: Third Voyage

This is a continuation of the topic MickyFine Swashbuckles Through 2017: Second Voyage.

This topic was continued by MickyFine Swashbuckles Through 2017: Fourth Voyage.

75 Books Challenge for 2017

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Edited: Jul 3, 2017, 6:41pm Top

While Captain Jack might get all the attention, Will Turner does have one awesome pirate hat.

I'm Micky, I'm 30, and despite the theme for my thread, I'm actually super law-abiding. :D I'm a collections librarian for the public library system in Edmonton and as a result I read a growing chunk of non-fiction as I select it for work every day. This year, I'm also on the team at work that selects the short list for the Alberta Reader's Choice Award (ARCA) so I'll be reading a lot of works by Alberta authors in the first half of the year. Outside of that my reading is a wide mix of genres but there's usually a healthy dose of YA, romance, fantasy, and historical fiction in the mix. In addition to books, I'm likely to discuss whatever I'm watching on TV, my cat, Smee, and occasional awesome life events on my thread. Posters and lurkers alike are welcome.

1. Devil Take the Hindmost - SG Wong
2. The Princess Diarist - Carrie Fisher
3. Shift - Kelly Shepherd
4. Devil in Winter - Lisa Kleypas
5. A Floating Phrase - Trent Portigal
6. Just One Damned Thing After Another - Jodi Taylor
7. Across the Floor - Natasha Deen
8. Rejected Princesses: Tales of History's Boldest Heroines, Hellions & Heretics - Jason Porath
9. Crosstalk - Connie Willis
Favourite read(s):

10. Scandal in Spring - Lisa Kleypas
11. A Wallflower Christmas - Lisa Kleypas
12. A Worthy Pursuit - Karen Witemeyer
13. The Secret Loves of Geek Girls - Hope Nicholson (ed.)
14. In My Wildest Dreams - Christina Dodd
15. Son of France - Todd Babiak
16. Love on the Mend - Karen Witemeyer
17. Mrs. Sherlock Holmes - Brad Ricca
18. The Husband Maneuver - Karen Witemeyer
19. The Book of Human Emotions - Tiffany Watt Smith
20. Kalyna - Pam Clark
21. How to Pick Up a Maid in Statue Square - Rea Tarvydas
22. A Murder Is Announced - Agatha Christie
23. Maybe This Time - Jennifer Snow
24. Fairy Tales for the Disillusioned: Enchanted Stories from the French Decadent Tradition - Gretchen Schultz & Lewis Seifert (ed.)
Favourite read(s):

25. Shylock Is My Name - Howard Jacobson
26. Rodent - Lisa Lawrence
27. Snow White - Matt Phelan
28. Paper Teeth - Lauralyn Chow
29. Gatekeeper - Natasha Deen
30. Ticker - Lisa Mantchev
31. Worth the Wait - Karen Witemeyer
32. A Perilous Undertaking - Deanna Raybourn
33. Difficult Women - Roxane Gay
34. Norse Mythology - Neil Gaiman
35. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen (re-read)
Favourite read(s):

Edited: Jul 3, 2017, 6:43pm Top

36. Mine Till Midnight - Lisa Kleypas
37. Mitzi Bytes - Kerry Clare
38. The Angry Tide - Winston Graham
39. Uninvited: Living Loved When You Feel Less Than, Left Out, and Lonely - Lisa TerKeurst
40. A Darker Shade of Magic - V.E. Schwab
41. The 13 Clocks - James Thurber
42. Any Duchess Will Do - Tessa Dare
43. The Little Shop of Happy Ever After - Jenny Colgan
Favourite read(s):

44. A Gathering of Shadows - V.E. Schwab
45. Captain Corelli's Mandolin - Louis de Bernieres
46. The Upside of Unrequited - Becky Albertalli
47. Fanning the Flames - Victoria Dahl
48. The Book: A Cover-to-Cover Exploration of the Most Powerful Object of Our Time - Keith Houston
49. The Marriage Bureau - Penrose Halson
50. The Circle - Dave Eggers
Favourite read(s):

51. The Improbability of Love - Hannah Rothschild
52. No Baggage: A Minimalist Tale of Love and Wandering - Clara Bensen
53. In the Bleak Midwinter - Julia Spencer-Fleming
54. Overturned - Lamar Giles
55. Heartstone - Elle Katharine White
Favourite read(s):

Edited: Oct 6, 2017, 10:55pm Top

56. A Conjuring of Light - V. E. Schwab
57. Ready Player One - Ernest Cline
58. Marcel's Letters: A Font and the Search for One Man's Fate - Carolyn Porter
59. The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
Favourite read(s):

60. The Stranger from the Sea - Winston Graham
61. My Not So Perfect Life - Sophie Kinsella
62. Magnate - Joanna Shupe
63. Edenbrooke - Julianne Donaldson
64. Frogkisser! - Garth Nix
65. Hidden Figures - Margot Lee Shetterly
66. Heart on the Line - Karen Witemeyer
67. They Do It With Mirrors - Agatha Christie
68. Lumberjanes Vol. 1: Beware the Kitten Holy - Noelle Stevenson et. al.
Favourite read(s):

69. Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong and the New Research That's Rewriting the Story - Angela Saini
70. The Marriage Test: Our 40 Dates Before "I Do" - Jill Andres and Brook Silva-Braga
71. Truth or Beard - Penny Reid
72. Every Word Is a Bird We Teach to Sing - Daniel Tammet
73. The Dire King - William Ritter
74. Two for the Dough - Janet Evanovich
Favourite read(s):

Edited: Jul 3, 2017, 6:43pm Top

My rating system:

/ = Ran screaming in the other direction (aka did not finish)
* = Suffered through it for reasons I'm still not sure of
** = Had far more flaws than virtues
*** = A read I don't regret but could use some improvement
**** = A good, solid read that I might revisit
***** = Loved it beyond reason and will probably re-read in short order

Edited: Jul 3, 2017, 6:48pm Top

Happy belated Canada Day to all the Canucks who wander these parts. I had a really great long weekend and hope you did as well. I spent a big chunk of it with The Boyfriend and amongst our adventures were fireworks on Saturday and a viewing of The Merry Wives of Windsor at the local Shakespeare in the Park festival.

My reading has slowed down a bit of late, but I'm still here and still plugging along with some solidly good reads on the way. So get cozy, grab a creamsicle, and hang out for the summer. :D

Jul 3, 2017, 6:46pm Top

Happy new thread, Micky!

Jul 3, 2017, 9:00pm Top

Happy new thread, and belated Happy Canada Day!

Jul 3, 2017, 9:05pm Top

>5 MickyFine:
I hope your Canada Day weather was nicer than ours. It ranged from drizzle to torrential downpour.

Jul 3, 2017, 10:12pm Top

To you and Captain Jack and Will Turner..........Happy new thread!

Jul 4, 2017, 6:35am Top

Happy new thread, Micky!

I would say that young Will Turner has more going for him than just the hat...

Jul 4, 2017, 7:13am Top

I'm with >10 scaifea: on Will Turner. It wasn't the hats that made me and my friends swoon in our seats when we were watching the PotC films in the cinema years ago.

Jul 4, 2017, 12:43pm Top

Happy New Thread, Micky!

Edited: Jul 4, 2017, 2:06pm Top

>6 PawsforThought: Thanks, Paws!

>7 foggidawn: Thanks, Foggi. Hope you're having a great 4th of July!

>8 Deedledee: It was a pretty nice day. There was a bit of a rainstorm around 7 but I was safely stowed inside at that point. Cleared up nicely by the time I went out for fireworks so it was warm and a bit humid.

>9 PaulCranswick: Thanks, Paul!

>10 scaifea: It's true. PotC is why 16 year old me had a massive crush on Orlando Bloom. My department at work has his READ poster from that era (sadly in storage during our renovations). It made my inner 16 year old happy every time I walked past it. :)

>12 jnwelch: Thanks, Joe.

Jul 4, 2017, 1:57pm Top

For all my American friends:

Courtesy of the Meanwhile in Canada FB page. :D

Jul 4, 2017, 2:06pm Top

>13 MickyFine: PotC was why you had a crush on him as a teen? For me and my friends, it was him as Legolas. Oh, my, how we swooned! He as Legolas was the sole reason we went to see PotC in the first place.

>14 MickyFine: Bahahahaha!

Jul 4, 2017, 2:45pm Top

:) Happy new thread.

Jul 4, 2017, 4:36pm Top

Happy new thread, Micky!

>14 MickyFine: LOL!

Jul 4, 2017, 7:16pm Top

Happy new thread!

Jul 5, 2017, 12:11am Top

Ooh, I like this thread topper too.

>14 MickyFine: :0D

Jul 5, 2017, 2:01am Top

Happy New thread and belated Canada Day!

Jul 5, 2017, 6:33am Top

>15 PawsforThought: Yes, Legolas! *sigh* Legolas and Johnny in the same movie was the reason my grad school friends and I went to the PotC movies...

Jul 5, 2017, 6:40am Top

>21 scaifea: The sounds my friends and I made every time OB was on screen is embarrassing.

Jul 5, 2017, 10:12am Top

>14 MickyFine: LOL!

I think this year the Brits might be happy to be rid of us.

Jul 5, 2017, 11:54am Top

>15 PawsforThought: Honestly, I didn't find him attractive at all as Legolas. It was PotC that sold me on Orlando Bloom. :)

>16 Kassilem: Thanks, Melissa!

>17 FAMeulstee: Thanks, Anita!

>18 drneutron: Thank you, Jim!

>19 humouress: I do like having a nice thread topper to peek at every time you pop by. :)

>20 leahbird: Thanks, Leah!

>23 jnwelch: It's entirely possible. Although they've got their own issues going on at the moment.

Jul 5, 2017, 3:58pm Top

Happy new thread! My sister had a big crush on Orlando Bloom, but I'm not sure which movie was the cause. I never did, but then again I have never seen a PotC movie OR a LotR movie...yes I am hanging my head in shame...

Jul 5, 2017, 4:01pm Top

>25 aktakukac: As you should. I'd kidnap you and make you sit through a marathon but you're a bit too far away. It's a good summer viewing project though...

Jul 5, 2017, 4:05pm Top

>26 MickyFine: PotC is perfect for watching in the summer! I associate LOTR more with winter but that could be because I'm used to watching them wrapped in blankets and with a big cup of tea in hand.

Jul 5, 2017, 4:12pm Top

>26 MickyFine: I am trying to watch more of the movies that I should have seen by now but haven't. I did watch Rogue One last year, which was my first Star Wars-related movie. I am making slow progress! I've at least thought about watching both PotC and LOTR at some point...

Jul 5, 2017, 4:20pm Top

>28 aktakukac: I'm rooting for you! ;)

Jul 5, 2017, 5:29pm Top

>28 aktakukac: What did you think of Rogue One? I'd imagine it's difficult to be as engaged with it if you haven't seen any of the other SW films before that.

Jul 5, 2017, 5:45pm Top

>29 MickyFine: Thanks! I should revise and update my list soon.

>30 PawsforThought: I will admit that I went to the theater as a favor to my husband, who loves all things Star Wars. It was a bit odd, because while I know a bit about some of the characters and things that happen in the other films, I didn't know what to expect. I'm sure I missed a lot of things that everyone else picked up on. I'll probably watch the other movies at some point, but I don't see myself becoming a SW fanatic!

Jul 5, 2017, 6:19pm Top

>31 aktakukac: You don't have to be a fanatic, most people aren't! But if you at least found Rogue One entertaining/good, then I think you'll like the others (except for Eps 1-3, because no one really likes those).
Star Wars also make for great summer watching, just so you know... ;)

Jul 5, 2017, 7:37pm Top

I never had much of a crush on Orlando Bloom -- I preferred Aragorn to Legolas, and Jack Sparrow to Will Turner.

Jul 6, 2017, 1:33pm Top

>33 foggidawn: I hear you on Aragorn. But only when he's dirty. I don't know what it is about Viggo Mortenson but he's far more attractive when he's got a layer of dirt on his face.

Edited: Jul 6, 2017, 1:39pm Top

Book 56

A Conjuring of Light - V.E. Schwab

And this is how you give an awesome fantasy trilogy an ending entirely worthy of the series. There's epic battles, quiet character development, and all of the major threads are given satisfying conclusions. I loved this book from the opening page and I sighed happily when I finished the last one. An obvious must if you've read the first two books. And if you haven't started this trilogy yet, get on it friend.

Rating: *****

Jul 6, 2017, 1:50pm Top

>35 MickyFine: My loan ran out in the middle so I'm waiting for my name to come back up so I can finish it, but I was loving it until then. Glad to know it continues to deliver!

Jul 6, 2017, 1:55pm Top

>35 MickyFine: Okay, okay, I'll start the series! Geez.

Jul 6, 2017, 2:32pm Top

Hi Micky! Hope you had a good Canada Day weekend!

>35 MickyFine: I have not heard of that series but I will have to check it out now!

Jul 6, 2017, 8:47pm Top

>36 leahbird: Ugh. That's always so sad when that happens. Condolences. ;)

>37 foggidawn: I am so surprised you weren't already on this bandwagon, Foggi. I feel like you'd really like this series.

>38 ChelleBearss: Hi Chelle! My Canada Day weekend was great. And the one coming up is also shaping up to be awesome. Going on a day trip to Drumheller on Saturday and then I have some friends getting married on Sunday. It'll be busy but fun.

Jul 7, 2017, 5:47pm Top

Happy new thread, Micky! Sounds like your Canada Day was lovely.

>5 MickyFine: - Now I want a creamsicle, but not the new ones. I used to love creamsicles - even more than revels - but the creamsicle I had last summer was.... not the same. They seem to have increased the orange sicle part and reduced the vanilla ice cream center. I was so bummed. It was as bad as noticing the chocolate to peanut butter ratio of mini reese peanut butter cups is not the same as the regular sized. ;-( Suffice to say, I have revels in my freezer at home.

>14 MickyFine: - LOL!

>35 MickyFine: - Oooohhhhhh.... 5 stars!

Jul 8, 2017, 10:33am Top

>39 MickyFine: Enjoy Drumheller! Will you be hiking or visiting some of the local attractions?
My BIL lives in Red Deer and always teases us with pictures of his hikes in the mountains. Just gorgeous scenery!

Jul 9, 2017, 11:02am Top

>40 lkernagh: Hi Lori! Hope you're having a great weekend. That entire trilogy received 5 stars from me.

>41 ChelleBearss: No hiking for us, Chelle. It was 32C in Drumheller yesterday. So any outdoor things we did were very brief. Our biggest chunk of time was spent at the Royal Tyrell Museum because dinosaurs. :D

I'll post my photo of the hoodoos later as copying the link on my iPad is impossible.

Jul 9, 2017, 12:03pm Top

>42 MickyFine: Dinosaurs! Woot! Looking forward to the pictures.

Jul 9, 2017, 9:06pm Top

>40 lkernagh: Another Reese's connoisseur! My friends think I'm crazy when I go off on a rant about the proper peanut butter to chocolate ratio. Mrsdrneutron gets it, which is why we've lasted so long together. 😀

Edited: Jul 10, 2017, 10:30am Top

Some highlights from my recent trip to Drumheller:


Woolly mammoth and sabretooth tigers.


Jul 10, 2017, 10:45am Top

>45 MickyFine: !!!!!!!!!! Dinosaurs!

Jul 10, 2017, 12:16pm Top

Wow. Those are fantastic photos! Thanks for sharing.

Jul 10, 2017, 4:00pm Top

Great pictures, especially the last one! Glad you had a nice time, even if you had to deal with hot temperatures! Oh, I'm about halfway through The Marriage Bureau and am liking it very much! I'd love to sit down tonight or tomorrow and finish it!

Jul 10, 2017, 4:16pm Top

That looks super interesting!

Jul 10, 2017, 4:34pm Top

>44 drneutron: - Glad to see I am not alone in noticing the difference! ;-)

>45 MickyFine: - The museum in Drumheller (and the Hoodoos) are awesome! It has been years since I last went. My dad, brother and SIL were in the area last Wednesday. They went to visit one of the old coal mines that has been opened up for guided tours. Given the fossil history in the Drumheller area, I probably shouldn't have been so surprised to learn how many coal mines used to populate the area.

Jul 10, 2017, 4:53pm Top

Nice dinosaurs.

Hoodoos?? I see them; they look cuddly and quirky, so they fit the name, but I sense a story behind it.

>44 drneutron: *approaching cautiously* I suppose it's scientifically proven? Personally, I'm not a fan of peanut butter in my chocolate, although I like it well enough on its own. Or, rather, with jam. And bread.

Jul 11, 2017, 7:41am Top

Happy New thread, Micky. I like the Drumheller photos. Looks like a cool place. Hope life and the books are treating you well.

Jul 11, 2017, 11:14am Top

>46 PawsforThought: Pretty much my reaction also. :)

>47 The_Hibernator: Glad you liked them, Rachel.

>48 aktakukac: Thanks, Rachel! Glad to hear The Marriage Bureau has been a hit with you. I quite enjoyed it.

>49 _Zoe_: Have you not made it far enough west to see Drumheller, Zoe?

>50 lkernagh: It's been about 7 years since my last trip to Drumheller, Lori, but The Boyfriend had never been and the friends we went with hadn't been in a while. The museum hasn't changed much since my last visit but it remains very impressive. We drove around Atlas Mines (probably the mines your family went to) but as it was very hot and pretty late in the day we didn't do any of the tours.

>51 humouress: I looked it up in the OED, Nina. The first citation in the etymology is Walt Whitman in 1879 mentioning hoodoos in an area of Yellowstone called Goblin Land. The word has ties to occult and voodoo. *shrug* I just think they look cool and I like to say the word. :D

>52 msf59: All is well with both books and life, Mark. Drumheller generally tends to be hot but it is pretty neat to visit. ;)

Jul 11, 2017, 1:26pm Top

>53 MickyFine: That's the only acceptable reaction to have.

Jul 11, 2017, 5:57pm Top

Great photos! We would like to visit there next time we visit my BIL. Chloe loves dinosaurs so I think she would love that

Jul 12, 2017, 11:20am Top

>55 ChelleBearss: It really is a great museum to visit. And I was impressed, they've got a bunch of activities for little kids down at toddler height below some of the displays (things to turn, spin, buttons to push etc.). Plus, you know, dinosaurs. :D

Jul 12, 2017, 7:04pm Top

>53 MickyFine: Nope, I've never been at all west in Canada. But I'll be going to BC next summer, and I'm hoping for Manitoba the summer after that, so maybe I'll get to Alberta three years from now :P

Edited: Jul 13, 2017, 12:07pm Top

>57 _Zoe_: BC is beautiful. You'll love it. The only time I've been to Manitoba was for a job interview in Winnipeg in January (several years ago now). Not the best time to the see the city. It was of course, the cliche of -30C. :P

Jul 14, 2017, 11:56pm Top

Book 57

Ready Player One - Ernest Cline

I'm a super latecomer to this one so I won't bother blurbing it as I feel like most people know what they're getting into with this one by now. Suffice it to say if you want dystopia mashed up with a dash of sci fi and some serious adventure with high levels of 80s pop culture references (particularly of the video game variety) then this is precisely the book you're looking for. I thoroughly enjoyed this one and would recommend to nerds of most stripes.

Rating: ****

Jul 15, 2017, 2:17am Top

You read RPO! YAY!!!! I so loved that book, but then I was a bit of a 80's gaming geek. ;-)

Jul 15, 2017, 10:34am Top

>59 MickyFine: Glad you loved Ready Player One! I popped on the band wagon a few years back and really enjoyed it!

Jul 15, 2017, 12:12pm Top

Jul 15, 2017, 3:12pm Top

>60 lkernagh: I spend a lot of time in various corners of geekery so while I wasn't around for 80s gaming, it was still super enjoyable.

>61 ChelleBearss: The Boyfriend is entirely to blame slash credit for my finally picking it up. It's one of his favourite books.

>62 scaifea: Woot woot!

Jul 15, 2017, 7:56pm Top

Yay, RP1!

Jul 15, 2017, 9:30pm Top

Jul 16, 2017, 1:01am Top

Book 58

Marcel's Letters: A Font and the Search for One Man's Fate - Carolyn Porter

When graphic designer Carolyn Porter found a selection of French WWII letters in an antiques shop in Minnesota, she knew immediately she had finally found the sample she wanted to fulfill her dream of designing a font. Purchasing five letters, Carolyn spent years painstakingly working on her font without really looking at the source material after tracing individual letters of interest. But one day while looking at the original letters again, Carolyn is suddenly struck by the desire to know what the letters say and try to find out who their author, Marcel, really was. This initial impulse leads Carolyn down a path of research that yields a story no one could have imagined.

The joys of ordering non-fiction for my library is that sometimes I discover gems like this book. I'm already a typography and history nerd and this book fed both interests. While Porter very clearly and with just the right amount of detail recounts her struggle designing her font, the primary focus of this book is her quest to discover who Marcel was and what happened to him. The story is utterly compelling and Porter beautifully balances the history with descriptions of her efforts to discover it and the effect of her search on herself and her relationships. A compelling read that I finished in just under a day, I highly recommend this one if the description intrigues you even slightly.

Rating: ****

Jul 17, 2017, 4:09pm Top

>66 MickyFine: I might as well add this one to the list!

Jul 17, 2017, 8:06pm Top

>58 MickyFine: Yeah, I can imagine that January wouldn't be the most appealing time!

I can't remember where we were talking about Hoopla, but I finally selected a book to try, only to learn that the whole thing is for Kindle Fire only, not regular Kindle. Blah.

Jul 17, 2017, 11:14pm Top

>66 MickyFine: It does sound intriguing. What was her font named, in the end?

Hmm .... maybe I could design a font based on my dad's handwriting; it's really pretty (but, unfortunately, not that legible - though, of course, I'd sort that out).

Jul 18, 2017, 10:34am Top

>67 aktakukac: Excellent call, Rachel. I was hoping it would strike someone's fancy.

>68 _Zoe_: We highjacked Nora's thread with our discussion of hoopla. ;) Yeah, I'm not surprised it doesn't work on a regular Kindle. Don't you know Amazon hates libraries?

>69 humouress: P22 Marcel is the font (you can see samples of it on the P22 Type Foundry website). I'd suggest reading the book, Nina, before undertaking designing a font from your dad's handwriting. It might make you think twice.

Jul 18, 2017, 10:36am Top

>70 MickyFine: Ah, that's where it was! I guess I'd forgotten that Amazon hates libraries, because they don't hate American libraries quite as much as Canadian ones. I can get Overdrive library books for my Kindle, so this seems like a step backwards. Boo.

Jul 18, 2017, 10:41am Top

>71 _Zoe_: Some days it feels like everything about hoopla is a step backwards. :P

Jul 18, 2017, 10:42am Top

>72 MickyFine: Heh. I'll be curious to see how it develops. I wasn't initially impressed with Overdrive either, but when I gave it another chance five years later, it was like night and day.

Jul 18, 2017, 11:20am Top

I was enjoying the liveliness of my thread, tbh

While we're on the topic, can someone explain to me what Libby is and how it's different from the OverDrive app?

Jul 18, 2017, 11:21am Top

>73 _Zoe_: I'm just not a fan of the model hoopla uses. Their content has improved exponentially since they first launched but I just don't think it's financially tenable for most libraries.

Jul 18, 2017, 11:21am Top

>74 norabelle414: Libby is just the new iteration of the OverDrive app and everyone is going to be forced over to it in the fall. Slightly different interface and it doesn't require an Adobe ID, but otherwise same ole same ole.

Jul 18, 2017, 11:29am Top

>74 norabelle414: Sorry, I didn't mean to abandon your thread! I just forgot where the conversation had been.

>75 MickyFine: I think the model has potential for use in conjunction with others, not as a full-out replacement. I like the idea that some number of times a year, you can skip the hold line to get the book you want right when you want it. But it doesn't have to be every time, with all the associated costs. Even something like 4-6 times per year would be nice.

Jul 18, 2017, 11:43am Top

>77 _Zoe_: Does your library have Freading? It has the same access rules as hoopla but it doesn't cost the library an arm and a leg. Of course, it's only ebooks (and maybe audiobooks).

Jul 22, 2017, 11:24pm Top

>74 norabelle414: >76 MickyFine: I tried Libby out briefly and hated it's interface. Not all my libraries were available either, although I assume that will change when it's forced on us.

Jul 24, 2017, 9:04am Top

>76 MickyFine: Not requiring an Adobe ID would be an improvement. It's the Adobe portion that always seems to cause problems for my mum and her sister. Mum's given up and just reads on her iPad in the Overdrive app, which works. Her sister doesn't have an iPad so she's just given up on ebooks from the library.

Jul 24, 2017, 11:03am Top

>80 archerygirl: Adobe IDs are an utter pain. But this is still an app so I don't know that it would change the experience much for someone using a computer. I don't do support for ereading as much as I used to so I'm not quite as knowledgeable as other librarians I know.

Jul 24, 2017, 11:55am Top

Book 59

The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood

I'm finding it hard to provide any individual thoughts on this novel. It's a compelling dystopia that wasn't quite as dark as I was worried it would be although there is plenty that is discomfiting. As brilliant as I've learned to expect from Atwood. I feel like less of a bad Canadian now that I've finally read this one, plus I can finally watch the series adaptation that I've been saving on my PVR.

Rating: ****

Jul 24, 2017, 11:58am Top

On a Margaret Atwood related theme, I highly recommend checking out the trailer for Alias Grace. It's airing in Canada on CBC in September and hits Netflix in November. I'm pretty excited as Alias Grace remains my favourite Atwood novel.

Jul 24, 2017, 1:24pm Top

>82 MickyFine: *patrs Micky on the head* Good Canadian. ;-)

Jul 24, 2017, 2:19pm Top

>84 foggidawn: Thanks. I'm no longer at risk of having my passport revoked for not having read this one. ;)

Jul 25, 2017, 2:03pm Top

>83 MickyFine: It is also my favourite Atwood! I am excited to see how they adapt that one as The Handmaid's Tale was done pretty well (What I've seen so far, anyway. I'm only two episodes in)

Did you read any of Atwood's weirder books like the MaddAdam trilogy? I really enjoyed those ones as well.

Jul 26, 2017, 10:15am Top

>86 ChelleBearss: I've got the Handmaid's Tale adaptation waiting for me on my PVR so I'll get to it eventually.

I haven't tackled MaddAdam yet. One of these days, probably.

Jul 28, 2017, 2:38pm Top

>82 MickyFine: - "I feel like less of a bad Canadian now that I've finally read this one" Well.... I am still a "bad Canadian" as I have yet to read any Atwood. I know, shocking. :-)

Jul 28, 2017, 3:25pm Top

>88 lkernagh: If it hadn't been for my reading of her in my required Canadian Literature course during undergrad, I still wouldn't have. But I'm really glad I did because she's actually really enjoyable (at least for this reader). :)

Jul 28, 2017, 5:14pm Top

I'm still a bad Canadian too. But I bought a second copy of the Handmaid's Tale last month, so that counts for something, right? I have aspirations. (I got the first one signed so I don't actually want to read that copy.)

Jul 28, 2017, 6:01pm Top

>90 _Zoe_: That totally counts. ;)

Jul 31, 2017, 2:04pm Top

Sigh. I was hoping to squeeze in one more this month but I've got another 200ish pages to go in my current read so I don't think it's going to happen today. So I'll be posting my July summary shortly.

Jul 31, 2017, 2:20pm Top

July Summary

Numbers in parentheses are for year to date.

Books read: 4 (59)
Books ditched: 0 (8)

Fiction: 3 (46)
Non-fiction: 1 (13)

Library: 3 (46)
Mine: 0 (1)
Borrowed elsewhere: 1 (12)

Re-reads: 0 (1)

Female authors: 3 (44)
Male authors: 1 (16)

Adult fiction: 3 (39)
YA fiction: 0 (6)
Children's fiction: 0 (2)

Pages:1,744 (19,137)

Average rating: 4.25 (3.94)

Average time to read book: 6.75 days (5.48 days)

Favourite book(s): The prize obviously has to go to the fabulous A Conjuring of Light. Such a fantastic trilogy.

Aug 1, 2017, 10:15pm Top

I'm chiming in late in the Libby discussion, but it's super easy to set up for a new user, and the patrons who have had trouble with the Overdrive app or have never used it before have had good results. I talked to the Overdrive folks at the Massachusetts Library Association conference, and they're planning on continuing support for both apps simultaneously foot awhile, as they have "power users" who are used to the app as it is. I can't use Libby myself, as it's incompatible woth my old android phone and my kindle at the moment.

I'll definitely have to put A Conjuring of Light trilogy bear the top of my tbr list... Once I finish a few more books

Aug 2, 2017, 3:39am Top

>35 MickyFine: I have succumbed to my injuries, but only because I was out Thingaversary hunting and my defences were down. Bought the first in the trilogy.

Aug 2, 2017, 5:51am Top

>59 MickyFine: Yep I loved that one. So did my eldest daughter.

It is also a perfect example of a story written to a three act structure. No surprise it is being turned into a film.

Aug 2, 2017, 10:51am Top

>94 bell7: I reset my iPad recently so in redownloading all my apps I swapped over to Libby. It's pretty decent to use, I have to admit. And I really hope you enjoy The Shades of Magic trilogy. They've been some of my top reads this year.

>95 humouress: Huzzah! Excellent choice, Nina.

>96 sirfurboy: Yup, I think it will be a solid adaptation. The Boyfriend is pretty excited for it and has already booked a date night. :)

Edited: Aug 2, 2017, 11:11am Top

Book 60

The Stranger from the Sea - Winston Graham

The Napoleonic War is raging on the continent and with Ross freshly returned to Cornwall from an observational mission in Portugal for Parliament, he discovers quieter conflicts brewing at home. While Ross and Demelza have settled into a happier phase of their marriage, they must now watch as their two eldest children struggle with finding their place in the world. Meanwhile, George Warleggan finds himself in an entirely new position when he finds himself attracted to a woman for the first time since Elizabeth's death. But in his pursuit of her, George may put everything he's worked so hard for at risk.

A quieter entry in the Poldark saga, this book is very obviously laying groundwork for the coming books in the series. That doesn't make it lacking in any way, as the characters are the real draw of these books and as long as I get time with Ross and Demelza, I'm very happy. While the focus of this novel shifts a little more to the younger Poldarks, there's still enough of my favourite couple to keep it from being too much a jolt. And Jeremy and Clowance are both intriguing characters on their own so that I look forward to seeing what the remaining books bring for them. If you've come this far in the series, you'll definitely enjoy this book.

Rating: ***

Aug 2, 2017, 4:58pm Top

Good review of Stranger from the Sea, Micky. That's my next Poldark, hopefully this month.

Aug 3, 2017, 12:05am Top

Gosh, its decades since I read the Poldark series and I can't even remember how far I got. Maybe it's time to revisit them.

Aug 3, 2017, 9:09am Top

>98 MickyFine: I read the first Poldark book last year, and currently have Demelza sitting in a stack at home. it's towards the top of the pile, so hopefully I will get to it soon(ish). Sometimes I am terrible at continuing with series, even if I enjoyed the earlier books!

Aug 3, 2017, 10:45am Top

>99 jnwelch: Thanks, Joe. I wish you luck in getting to this one this month. It's an enjoyable read.

>100 humouress: They've been solid reads, Nina. I think they're definitely worth a revisit.

>101 aktakukac: I'm the same way, Rachel. I've got all the Outlander novels at home on my shelf but have only made it through the first 5. I keep meaning to go back to them but I am constantly distracted by shiny new library books. I'm thinking I'll bring one of them with me when I go on vacation in September and maybe that will jump start my return to the series. I hope you enjoy Demelza when you get to it. There's some good happenings in that one. :)

Aug 5, 2017, 6:46am Top

>98 MickyFine: I need to catch up on the series too Micky. I think that I have read the first three.

Have a great weekend.

Aug 6, 2017, 12:01am Top

Hi Micky! Trying to catch up after an embarrassingly long absence...

Ooh, you got me with >66 MickyFine: Marcel's Letters -- looks amazing! I've also had Ready Player One on my list for a long time, and have never read The Handmaid's Tale though I am a Canadian wannabe :)

Happy weekend!

Aug 6, 2017, 11:14am Top

>103 PaulCranswick: Its been an enjoyable series, Paul. If you liked the first three, you'll definitely enjoy the following books.

>104 AMQS: Hi Anne! 3 BBs for you. I'm on a roll! I feel like you're at least halfway to being a Canadian as living where you do has already given you the required tolerance for cold, snowy weather. ;)

Aug 6, 2017, 11:29am Top

Book 61

My Not So Perfect Life - Sophie Kinsella

Katie Brenner has never wanted anything as much as she wanted to leave her farm life in Somerset for a much more glamorous life in London. She feels she's well on her way there when she begins working as a research assistant at a branding firm in London, even if her flat and commute are terrible and she's barely scraping by on her income. But when disaster strikes in her work life, Katie comes to learn just what will make her happy.

Sophie Kinsella is one of those hit or miss authors for me. Sometimes I'll enjoy her fluffy style of writing but this novel was sadly a miss. I found it just a little ridiculous that at the age of 26, Katie had yet to learn real empathy or the fact that a life that looks perfect from the outside rarely is (a central theme of the novel). I also didn't find the romance subplot all that swoony. Ultimately, an ok read but I can recommend far better fluffy novels to pick up if you're in the mood.

Rating: **

Aug 10, 2017, 11:58am Top

Book 62

Magnate - Joanna Shupe

Emmett Cavanaugh is caught by surprise when Elizabeth Sloane approaches him to back her stock trading firm. Not once would he have expected that this member of New York City's highest social circles would ever bother to even speak to him as a rich but new monied nobody who worked himself up from the slums of Five Points to the position as one of the biggest steel magnates in the country. He also never expected to find her so attractive. When their business relationship turns to a romantic one both Emmett and Elizabeth will have to determine whether they can ever know each other well enough to make it work.

Another romance novel that I got from a recommendation list from a different romance author whom I enjoy. Sadly, this one wasn't a hit for me. There's nothing really wrong with it, I liked the time period and the characters were ok. But the novel felt a bit too paint by numbers. Romances are nothing if not predictable but I need strong characters and some charm in the mix, otherwise it doesn't quite work for me and this novel didn't quite pull off the combo I prefer. If the premise sounds good to you, I wouldn't discourage anyone from reading it but I won't be actively seeking down the other books in this series or by this author. *shrug*

Rating: ***

Aug 14, 2017, 12:14pm Top

>109 Congrats on escaping scot-free, Nina!

>110 This one was an LT BB although I can't quite remember who hit me with it to begin with. Possibly Foggi? Happy to pass it on at any rate. :)

Aug 14, 2017, 12:29pm Top

>111 Not me this time! It's definitely caught my eye, to recommend to my mom if not to read myself.

Aug 14, 2017, 1:25pm Top

>112 Hmmm. I know I saw it on 2 different threads around here. Ah well. Hopefully you and/or your mom enjoy it. :)

Edited: Aug 18, 2017, 3:26pm Top

Book 64

Frogkisser! - Garth Nix

Princess Anya really just wants to spend all her time in her castle's library studying how to be a sorcerer and avoiding her evil stepfather, Duke Rikard, and the dramatics of her twin sister, Morven. But when Duke Rikard decides to move up his evil plans to steal the crown from Morven and exile Anya, Anya is forced to go on a Quest to recruit aid to help defeat her stepfather. At the same time, she must also collect ingredients for a lip balm that will allow her to transform one of Morven's former suitors back into a human after Duke Rikard turns him into a frog. As Anya's Quest goes on, it also grows and Anya must decide just what kind of princess she wants to be.

Decidedly cute, this was a charming take on several different fairy tales and the fantasy genre in general. I solidly enjoyed it but didn't quite love it, although I think that's largely a symptom of not being the target market for the book. If you enjoy humourous takes on fantasy and enjoy older middle-grade/ young YA, this one is definitely worth picking up. Also, if you like truly adorable talking dogs. Or just dogs.

Rating: ***

Aug 24, 2017, 10:56am Top

Book 65

Hidden Figures - Margot Lee Shetterly

Margot Lee Shetterly's recounting of the black women who worked at NACA (later NASA) in Langley, Virginia from WWII through to the moon landing is a well-constructed history of a group of women who have been largely overlooked. Shetterly writes beautifully about these women, the work they did in a field dominated by (white) men, and the larger social context of Virginia as it moved from segregation to integration. Definitely worth a read whether your interest is in history of science, social history, or women's history.

Rating: ****

Aug 24, 2017, 12:30pm Top

>115 Ah, I'm so tempted to pull down my copy from the shelves and dive into it! But I have other things than need to be read first.
I wasn't expecting anything but glowing reviews for this one but it's still nice to see it.

Aug 24, 2017, 4:58pm Top

>115 Yes! I loved that book. Like so many, I knew nothing about this amazing story until reading it.

Aug 25, 2017, 10:44am Top

>116 I'm sure you'll enjoy it when you get to it, Paws. :)

>117 I hadn't planned on reading the book but after watching the film I wanted to learn more. It was a thoroughly enjoyable read. :)

Aug 25, 2017, 11:48am Top

>118 I'm sure I will. Also looking forward to the girls-only Hidden Figures movie night my mum and I have planned once I've read the book (I'm a book-before-the-movie kind of gal, generally).

Edited: Aug 25, 2017, 1:40pm Top

>119 For films based on novels, I usually am the same but I'm not as hard core about films based on non-fiction books. :)

Aug 25, 2017, 1:51pm Top

>120 I can't think of that many other non-fiction books that have become movies, so don't have much to compare to. But this one I do want to read first.

Aug 25, 2017, 2:13pm Top

>121 Oh I could list so many: Lion, The Theory of Everything, The King's Speech, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, A Walk in the Woods, and The Zookeeper's Wife are just a handful of the films I can think of off the top of my head.

Aug 25, 2017, 2:29pm Top

>122 Your brain is obviously working a lot better than mine! I only recognise the first three though, and have only watched The King's Speech - didn't read the book first, because I didn't know there was a book until later.

Edited: Aug 25, 2017, 2:40pm Top

>122 In Cold Blood, Fast Food Nation, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Angela's Ashes, Eat Pray Love, Wild, Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil, The Glass Castle (came out last week!), Tuesdays with Morrie, Seabiscuit, Unbroken, Running with Scissors, Marley & Me, Team of Rivals (Lincoln), Julie & Julia, Persepolis, Girl Interrupted

Aug 25, 2017, 2:44pm Top

>124 Thank you for reminding me that there's a movie version of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks! I'd made a note to watch it but it completely slipped my mind.

And your lists are making it clear to me that I'm not as fastidious about my book-before-film rule as previously stated. Of the ones I've watched, all have been before reading the book.
Should I hide in shame now?

Aug 25, 2017, 3:27pm Top

>123 MickyFine: I order non-fiction books for a living. I'm usually pretty on top of which books are being turned into films. :)

>124 Look at you go!

>125 I don't think so. There are so many films based on books and often even I don't realize it until I go to watch it and see the "based on" portion of the titles. You make an effort and that's all that matters.

Aug 25, 2017, 3:30pm Top

>126 I'm on top when it comes to fiction (though not purposefully, it just seems to stick in my head), but not as much with non-fiction.

Aug 25, 2017, 4:22pm Top

>118 PawsforThought: Good for you, Micky. I had it the other way around - I read the book first, and then saw the excellent movie. After seeing the movie, I was hoping some percentage of the audience would then go read the book - of course, a lot from the book had to be left out for a 2 hour or so movie, and, as you say, the book is a thoroughly enjoyable read.

Aug 25, 2017, 8:47pm Top

Hi Micky! I am finally making my way back over here to see what all has been happening since my last visit.

>106 MickyFine: - Sophie Kinsella is one of my "sick in bed and meed fluff" kind of author. I haven't read that one, but I agree with you that some of Kinsella's characters tend to lack certain qualities I like to see in my fluffy reads.

>108 MickyFine: - I have seen good comments about Edenbrooke, so rather happy to see you found it to be a good read. I am okay with "cute regency romance". ;-)

>115 MickyFine: - I will probably end up seeing the movie before reading the book - just like you did - but glad to see the book ranks up there as a worthy read.

All caught up! Wishing you a happy weekend Micky.

Aug 27, 2017, 9:54am Top

Passing through, enjoying your posts and discussions...

Aug 27, 2017, 5:33pm Top

>129 Hi Lori! Lovely to see you as always. I think Edenbrooke might be just your cuppa. Hope your weekend has been good. My boyfriend came back yesterday after vacationing in Vernon for a week and a half so my weekend improved vastly yesterday evening. :) It didn't hurt that we went to an outdoor showing of Guardians of the Galaxy II last night with a group of friends.

>130 Nice to see you, Gail.

Aug 27, 2017, 5:43pm Top

Book 66

Heart on the Line - Karen Witemeyer

Grace Mallory has been living in the women's colony of Harper's Station, Texas and working as the local telegraph operator. Over the course of her time there, she has struck up a friendship over the telegraph wire with Mr. A, another telegraph operator in Denison. But when Mr. A (the very kind, bespectacled Amos Bledsoe) overhears a warning to Grace that one of the dark shadows from her past has come back to haunt her, he immediately wants to help. But even with Amos' help, will Grace be able to overcome the threats that have come her way?

This was a cute historical Christian romance. I'm generally a fan of Witemeyer's writing and this was a solid entry in her new series. Grace and Amos are neither typical romance leads as Grace is rather shy and Amos is far more of an intellectual man than one of the muscular types that typically crop up in historical romances. I also enjoyed the historical equivalent of meeting online with Grace and Amos both being telegraph operators. If you enjoy this genre, this is a solid read and worth picking up.

Rating: ****

Aug 28, 2017, 12:37am Top

>131 - My boyfriend came back yesterday How wonderful! I really miss drive in theaters (Yes, I am showing my age and I am guessing that your showing wasn't the "drive-in movie type") but still glad to see you were able to enjoy an outside showing of Guardians of the Galaxy II. Was the movie any good? Just curious.....

Aug 28, 2017, 9:31am Top

>131 ChelleBearss: Oh, that would be a fun movie to see outdoors! Nate bought a copy for me as I loved the first one. Hoping to watch it tomorrow night on our anniversary. I love groot!

Aug 28, 2017, 12:14pm Top

>133 No, it wasn't a drive in sadly. It was held in a park next to a community rec centre. They had one of those of blow-up movie screens. So you could set up with your lawn chair, snacks, and (in my case) sleeping bag and enjoy the movie. I actually liked this movie better than the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie. The soundtrack in the first one was better (although this one is still good) but the plot of this one was better.

>134 It was my first time seeing the new one and it was a lot of fun. You should be very happy as there is a lot of cute Groot stuff. Also, happy early anniversary!

Aug 29, 2017, 5:29pm Top

I liked Baby Groot, but overall preferred the first movie. The music in both was fun!

Aug 30, 2017, 6:44am Top

>135 Thanks Micky! Nate's BIL is visiting from Red Deer so our anniversary was just spent hanging with them.
Loved the baby groot stuff from the second movie! Adorable!

Aug 30, 2017, 11:10am Top

>136 Fair enough. I think you'd have to be a cold-hearted soul not to like baby Groot. ;)

>137 Nice! Glad to hear you had an enjoyable anniversary, Chelle.

Aug 30, 2017, 11:35am Top

Book 67

They Do It With Mirrors - Agatha Christie

When Miss Marple's old school friend, Ruth, asks Miss Marple to check in on Ruth's sister, Carrie Louise, at her estate, Miss Marple is only too happy to comply. Upon arrival at Stonygates, Miss Marple must agree with Ruth that something odd is in the air at the estate beyond the strangeness that results from it also being home to an institute for delinquent boys and young men. When one of Carrie Louise's relatives is murdered, it becomes even clearer that something is afoot at Stonygates and it is up to Miss Marple to figure it out.

Agatha Christie is always a reliably solid read and this entry in the Miss Marple series is no exception. However, I have to admit that it didn't knock my socks off quite the same way as the prior Miss Marple. I think some of the reason that I was underwhelmed was that I figured out who did it relatively early on and thus was deprived of the usual surprise. Nonetheless, an enjoyable read.

Rating: ***

Aug 30, 2017, 1:10pm Top

>139 This is actually one of my favourite Marple stories. There are a lot of smaller details that I really like in the story. You're obviously cleverer than me because I didn't manage to figure out the end.

Aug 30, 2017, 1:22pm Top

>140 So far my favourite Marples are The Body in the Library and A Murder is Announced. But I still have several more to go. :)

Edited: Aug 30, 2017, 1:33pm Top

>141 I liked A Murder Is Announced a lot too. Not quite as keen on The Body in the Library. It's been so long since I read some of the books that I've forgotten which are Marples and which are Poirots (and sometimes what the plot was entirely). I liked 4:50 From Paddington a lot (the TV version is terrible).

Aug 30, 2017, 8:52pm Top

I'm finally venturing out into the threads. I feel a little dejected because I am so hopelessly behind.

>115 MickyFine: I enjoyed this one. I watched the movie on a plane, and it was well done too. I always choke up at movies when they show the real person's photo next to the actor. Does anyone else do that?

Aug 30, 2017, 9:28pm Top

Did you see the good news?!?!

Edited: Aug 31, 2017, 10:59am Top

>143 It's so lovely to see you, Marie! Thanks for venturing! I got a little verklempt last week as several people were tweeting about Katherine Johnson's 99th birthday and marveling about the work she did. Nice to see her getting broader recognition.

>144 That is very exciting! Shades of Magic I'm hoping the new trilogy explores the lives of Rhy's parents because Conjuring made me so curious about them from the few hints of their back story. But any time in the 4 Londons will be fantastic.

Edited: Aug 31, 2017, 1:21pm Top

Book 68

Lumberjanes Vol. 1: Beware the Kitten Holy - Noelle Stevenson et. al.

April, Mal, Ripley, Molly, and Jo are just spending their summer at camp, working hard to earn their various Lumberjanes badges. But seriously weird things keep happening. Attack foxes and river monsters are just some of the things the girls encounter that would make anyone ask, "What the junk?!" Can the girls figure out what's going on and keep their cabin leader, Jen, from having heart attack over their recurring disappearances at the same time?

I went into the first Lumberjanes knowing I'd love it as so many other readers whose tastes I respect already do. And I was not disappointed. This first volume is just as fun as I'd expected. And by the second chapter I'd finally managed to get a handle on which girl went with which name. I'll definitely be continuing on with this series.

Rating: ***

Aug 31, 2017, 12:07pm Top

>139 PawsforThought: I really need to read some Christie! I have them, just haven't gotten to any yet

Aug 31, 2017, 1:19pm Top

August Summary

Numbers in parentheses are for year to date.

Books read: 9 (68)
Books ditched: 0 (8)

Fiction: 8 (54)
Non-fiction: 1 (14)

Library: 9 (55)
Mine: 0 (1)
Borrowed elsewhere: 0 (12)

Re-reads: 0 (1)

Female authors: 7 (51)
Male authors: 2 (18)

Adult fiction: 6 (45)
YA fiction: 1 (7)
Children's fiction: 1 (3)

Pages: 3,032 (22,169)

Average rating: 3.2 (3.57)

Average time to read book: 3.9 days (4.69 days)

Favourite book(s): I'll give the prize to Edenbrooke for being a light and enjoyable Regency romance.

Aug 31, 2017, 1:21pm Top

>147 Oh you most definitely should, Chelle. I have a feeling you'd love her. And Then There Were None or The Murder of Roger Ackroyd are two really good Christie novels to try as your first.

Edited: Sep 6, 2017, 10:43pm Top

Book 69

Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong and the New Research That's Rewriting the Story - Angela Saini

Saini's journalistic non-fiction book explores how science from roughly the Victorian era onward often approached the study of women as inferior to men and the more recent work that has explored the female sex and whether they really are all that different from men. I went into this book expecting to get angry at some scientists in the past (and I definitely did - stupid Charles Darwin) but I was also surprised at some of the more current theories coming out of some fields (the evolutionary biologist who recently theorized that menopause exists because men don't find older women attractive made my brain explode). That said, there is also some fascinating work being done in fields as diverse as neurobiology and psychology where the debate on looking for gender differences is really a field worth continuing to explore. As Saini takes a journalistic approach, she does a fair job of balancing differing theories in fields like anthropology or evolutionary biology where a great deal of the work is extrapolations and hypotheses. And while Saini describes herself as a feminist in the introduction, she includes no judgments in her book on scientists she interviews whose viewpoints are likely to make the average feminist a little frustrated. A super interesting read regardless of your gender and whether or not you typically have an interest in science writing.

Rating: ****

Sep 6, 2017, 12:04pm Top

Sounds like an interesting read!

Sep 6, 2017, 12:37pm Top

Book 70

The Marriage Test: Our 40 Dates Before "I Do" - Jill Andres and Brook Silva-Braga

Jill and Brook had been together for several years in the most serious relationship either of them had ever had. But still they were left with the question of whether they could actually handle being married to each other for the rest of their lives. In order to try and simulate some of the challenges of marriage they came up with a list of 40 "dates" that would hopefully help them figure out whether or not marriage was really for them. Whether it was borrowing a baby for 24 hours, swapping credit cards for a month, going on dates with their exes, or giving each other notes on performance in the bedroom, each "date" gave them new insights into their relationship and gave them a better idea of whether the rest of their lives would be spent together or apart.

I quite enjoyed this memoir. Written with alternating comments from both Jill and Brook on each of the dates it was interesting to see which dates challenged their relationship the most. The book does include a full list of each of the dates, describing what they entail to make replicating some (or all) of them an option for any dating or even engaged couple. A fun read and possibly an educational one if you're in a relationship but hesitant to make that final commitment step.

Rating: ***

Personal disclaimer: this book was on The List before I even met The Boyfriend. It's appearance in my what to read next shuffle is entirely coincidental.

Sep 6, 2017, 6:06pm Top

Hi Micky! I'm a bit late in commenting, but I own Hidden Figures and really should move it up the TBR list (after I finish a work book or two...). You got me with a book bullet for Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong and the New Research that's Rewriting the Story. Looks like you've been reading some good ones this last month or so!

Sep 6, 2017, 10:13pm Top

Micky, I love Miss Marple! My two favorites are Murder at the Vicarage and A Murder Is Announced. Although I like them all, really. She seems like an old, old friend to me. The short stories involving her are quite good, too.

Inferior looks fascinating. Adding it to the WL. Many thanks for the informative review.

Sep 7, 2017, 10:35am Top

>151 bohemima: It definitely is, Chelle. And for non-fiction on science, it was also a pretty quick one.

>153 Hi Mary! Hidden Figures and Inferior are both super enjoyable reads. I'm sure you'll like them both.

>154 Miss Marple is so lovely, I agree. Glad to see Inferior has found another interested reader. :)

Sep 12, 2017, 12:00pm Top

Book 71

Truth or Beard - Penny Reid

Jessica James has moved back to her small home town in Tennessee after college to teach at the local high school. Her goal is to pay off her student loans and save enough in the next two to three years to finally pursue her dream of traveling the world. What Jessica did not expect was to fall hard for Duane who drove her crazy as a kid and teen and has grown up into a truly enticing hunk of man.

Sadly, despite the utterly adorable cover on this self-published romance, the content failed to deliver. The book obviously suffers from the lack of an editor and the plot feels a bit too long and slightly convoluted. There are also some rather "quirky" turns of phrase that a good editor would have likely had the author replace (for example, using "sex cartwheels" to describe a relatively run-of-the-mill romance novel sex scene was just odd). Not recommended and I definitely won't be picking up any of the author's other novels.

Rating: **

Sep 15, 2017, 11:03am Top


Shadow of Night - Deborah Harkness

I made it slightly beyond the Pearl rule boundary before ditching this one. I'm not sure if this one fell flat because it's been so long since I read the first book in the trilogy or because I was sick with a nasty cold while trying to dig in or because my reading tastes have changed and the domineering male lead just rubs me the wrong way now. Whatever the case after 75 pages I'd had enough of time traveling witch and vampire in Elizabethan England even if they were hanging out with Raleigh and Marlowe.

Rating: /

Sep 15, 2017, 1:42pm Top

Life Update

I may be slightly more absent over the next couple weeks. I leave on a two week vacation to Nova Scotia starting Wednesday next week. I don't know how much I'll be checking in, depends on energy levels, reading time, and wifi signals. Here's hoping Jose decides to stay far out in the Atlantic. *fingers crossed* I'll be back home but still off work for a few days before Canadian Thanksgiving. Yay for actually setting it up so that I can have a vacation from my vacation. ;)

Sep 15, 2017, 1:51pm Top

Enjoy your vacation!! Take some pretty pictures so that we can live vicariously through you.

Sep 15, 2017, 2:42pm Top

>157 ChelleBearss: Sorry this one didn't do it for you. I think I made it through this one but bailed on the third one.

Have a great vacation! Where will you be in NS?

Sep 15, 2017, 3:02pm Top

Have a great vacation!

Sep 15, 2017, 3:06pm Top

>157 ChelleBearss: - Sorry about the bad book but hooray for vacation! Have a great time!

Sep 15, 2017, 8:30pm Top

Enjoy your vacation!

Sep 16, 2017, 10:54am Top

>159 katiekrug: Pretty pictures guaranteed, Nora. :)

>160 _Zoe_: I'm going to be all over NS, Chelle. Halifax (of course), Peggy's Cove, Annapolis Royal, Parrsboro, and Cape Breton are all in the plans.

>161 MickyFine: Thanks, Foggi.

>162 Thanks, Katie!

>163 Thanks, Zoe. I will. First real vacation this year and I've been getting antsy for time off.

Sep 16, 2017, 12:48pm Top

>164 When you are in Peggy's Cove if you have time for lunch you should hit up The Rhubarb Restaurant at the front of the Oceanstone Resort. It's only 5 minutes from the lighthouse and it's amazing! That's where Nathen and I got married and their seafood chowder is fantastic! They have oceanside cottages there as well if you wanted to spend the night in Peggy's Cove.
We are planning to go back there for our ten year anniversary and I can't wait!


Sep 17, 2017, 9:12am Top

Happy vacation and have a safe trip!

Edited: Sep 18, 2017, 10:53am Top

>165 I'm popping into Peggy's Cove on my way from Halifax to Lunenburg. Really hoping I'll get to see the Bluenose II in Lunenburg. :) But thanks for the tip!

>166 Thanks, Amber.

Sep 18, 2017, 3:58pm Top

Have a great time! I managed to have a day off after we got back from our recent vacation before I had to go back to work. I'm certain you'll enjoy a vacation from your vacation :)

Sep 21, 2017, 4:04pm Top

Hey Micky, you're in my neck of the woods! Let me know if you want any suggestions for places to eat, stay, or things to do.

Sep 23, 2017, 9:05am Top

Book 72

Every Word Is a Bird We Teach to Sing - Daniel Tammet

This collection of essays on language and words should have been right up my alley but with the exception of the first essay, I found them largely underwhelming. Tammet's first essay, in which he discusses his initial issues speaking English as a high functioning autistic was fascinating. But from there, while the topics remained interesting the essays were missing something. I'm not sure if it was personal connection or just Tammet's style didn't work for me but I felt like I was slogging my way through some of these. But it may be a personal taste issue.

Rating: ***

Sep 23, 2017, 11:54pm Top

Wishing you a wonderful weekend, Micky

Sep 24, 2017, 2:52pm Top

Hi Micky! Hope you are enjoying your vacation! :)

Sep 24, 2017, 3:45pm Top

>170 msf59: Sorry this collection fell flat but I do love that title.

Happy Sunday, Micky. Hope all is well.

Sep 25, 2017, 3:45pm Top

>171 MickyFine: Thanks, Paul.

>172 My vacation has been great, Stephen.

>173 The title is wonderful, Mark, and totally up your alley. :)

Sep 25, 2017, 3:50pm Top

Vacation Update

I am having a fantastic time in Nova Scotia. I'm in Yarmouth today after driving from Halifax to Lunenburg (with stop in Peggy's Cove) yesterday. The weather has been beautiful, everywhere I've visited has been lovely, and I'm thoroughly enjoying myself. I promise there will be pictures when I get home (linking to FB images on the iPad doesn't really work) but trust me when I say it's gorgeous here and worth visiting.

Sep 25, 2017, 3:55pm Top

Glad to see that you are enjoying Nova Scotia! Hope the rest of your trip goes well!

Sep 25, 2017, 4:32pm Top

Glad to hear you're having such a great trip! Looking forward to the photos :)

Sep 26, 2017, 12:22am Top

Happy vacation to you! You're in a part of the world I've always wanted to visit (that and I'm an unabashed Canadaphile). Enjoy! Can't wait to see pictures.

>157 ChelleBearss: Yes, I barely made it through the first book! I won't likely read the others unless I'm stranded on a desert isle with them in a Little Free Library or something:)

Sep 26, 2017, 10:20am Top

Hope your vacation continues to go well!

Sep 26, 2017, 3:46pm Top

There are Canadaphiles?

Sep 29, 2017, 5:49pm Top

>176 aktakukac: Thanks, Chelle!

>177 Deedledee: Photos will likely appear late next week.

>178 MickyFine: Thanks, Anne!

>179 Other than some interesting driving in heavy rain yesterday, it's continued to be great, Rachel. :)

Sep 29, 2017, 5:54pm Top

Book 73

The Dire King - William Ritter

The fourth and final book in the Jackaby series.

While none of the following books have quite lived up to my great love for the first book in the series, this is a solid ending. It's an action heavy book with everything hitting the fan from early on but it does wrap up threads pretty smoothly. This series might benefit from being read closer together so don't let my middling reaction keep you away. I do highly recommend the first book if you haven't read it yet and enjoy some supernatural combined with your Sherlock homage in YA format.

Rating: ***

Sep 29, 2017, 5:59pm Top

Book 74

Two for the Dough - Janet Evanovich

The second Stephanie Plum sees her continuing in her career as bounty hunter. This time she's on the lookout for Kenny Mancuso who might have a few screws loose and is definitely involved in something bigger that puts Stephanie at risk and in cahoots with the alluring and annoying Morelli.

A fun mystery that shows it's age in several places but quick relatively mindless fun anyways. I'll be keeping this series in my rotation.

Rating: ***

Oct 1, 2017, 2:01pm Top

Books completed in October that will be properly posted about in new thread that I'll start when I get home from vacation later this week:

75. Every Heart a Doorway - Seanan McGuire

Oct 1, 2017, 6:40pm Top

Congrats on hitting 75!

Oct 2, 2017, 8:16am Top

Congratulations on #75, Micky!

And I hope your vacation continues to be a great experience. I'd like to visit the Maritime Probinces, maybe in the next year or two. I've always wanted to go there.

Oct 2, 2017, 1:42pm Top

Congrats on hitting 75 books already! Hope you are having a great trip!

Oct 2, 2017, 9:12pm Top

I saw the weekend news from Edmonton and wanted to check in. Glad to see your vacation is going well and congrats in 75!

Oct 3, 2017, 8:04am Top

>184 ChelleBearss: Congratulations on reaching 75, Micky!
I hope your vacation is good.

Oct 3, 2017, 9:13am Top

Congrats on reading # 75! Did you read it on vacation? It seems like I can never get any reading done on vacation anymore.

Oct 5, 2017, 10:26pm Top

Congrats on 75!!

Oct 6, 2017, 8:33am Top

>181 MickyFine: Psh, no rush, I just posted one pic from my summer vacation to meet my nephew yesterday.

Congratulations on reaching 75!

Oct 6, 2017, 10:36pm Top

>185 lkernagh: Thanks, Jim!

>186 FAMeulstee: I only did Nova Scotia but I highly recommend a visit to the Maritimes, Gail.

>187 aktakukac: Thanks, Chelle. The trip was great.

>188 Kassilem: My family was very happy I was away on vacation as the attack was only a couple blocks away from where I live. Thanks for popping in, Lori.

>189 bell7: It was wonderful. Thanks, Anita.

>190 MickyFine: I did finish it on vacation, Rachel. Managed to do 4 (and 1/2) books while away on vacation. I gave myself permission on a couple afternoons after doing the tourist-y thing that I could hang out and just read. Helped with the finish rate. :)

>191 Thanks, Melissa.

>192 Thanks, Mary. I'm finally starting to feel caught up on my life. Although I'm still slowly wading through my starred threads on LT.

Oct 6, 2017, 10:54pm Top

September Summary

Numbers in parentheses are for year to date.

Books read: 6 (74)
Books ditched: 1 (9)

Fiction: 3 (57)
Non-fiction: 3 (17)

Library: 6 (61)
Mine: 0 (1)
Borrowed elsewhere: 0 (12)

Re-reads: 0 (1)

Female authors: 4 (55)
Male authors: 2 (20)

Adult fiction: 2 (75)
YA fiction: 1 (8)
Children's fiction: 0 (3)

Pages: 1,846 (24,015)

Average rating: 3.0 (3.29)

Average time to read book: 4.0 days (4.35 days)

Favourite book(s): I'll give the prize to The Marriage Test for being such an engaging (pun mostly unintentional) relationship memoir.

Group: 75 Books Challenge for 2017

418 members

172,369 messages


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