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Leslie's 2018 ROOTs


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Edited: Oct 3, 5:33pm Top

I am going to keep the same goal I had in 2017, 100 ROOTs overall with the hope of 50 of them being print books.

* = a book from the Guardian's 1000 novels everyone should read list

Print books:
1) *Dead Lagoon (1/4)
2) Over My Dead Body (1/11)
3) *The Vagabond (1/20)
4) Robinson (1/24)
5) Money From Holme (1/26)
6) Where There's a Will (1/27)
7) Not Quite Dead Enough (2/18)
8) The Photograph (2/25)
9) Suicide Excepted (3/15)
10) The Silent Speaker (3/21)
11) Green Shiver (3/22)
12) If on a winter's night a traveler (3/29)
13) The Underground Man (4/7) (read as part of my omnibus "Archer, P.I.")
14) Tragedy at Law (4/8)
15) *Underworld (4/25)
16) And Be a Villain (4/29)
17) With a Bare Bodkin (5/7)
18) Look to the Lady (5/14)
19) The Wind Blows Death (6/5)
20) The Second Confession (6/15)
21) Lucia's Progress (6/22) (read as part of my omnibus "Make Way for Lucia")
22) *The Group (6/29)
23) Death Walks the Woods (7/3)
24) Beast in View (7/19)
25) Saint Martin's Summer (7/25)
26) Abracadaver (7/26)
27) Three Doors to Death (7/31)
28) In the Best Families (8/3)
29) Drink to Yesterday (8/19)
30) *The Road (9/8)
31) *Death of the Heart (9/9)
32) Trouble for Lucia (9/10) (read as part of my omnibus "Make Way for Lucia")
33) Murder by the Book (9/11)
34) *The Bell Jar (9/22)

Kindle books:
1) *The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists (1/1)
2) The Ice Princess (1/6)
3) Mike (1/8)
4) *The Captive (1/10)
5) Black Diamond Death (1/15)
6) *Martin Eden (1/17)
7) The Vanishing Man (1/20)
8) *Metamorphosis (1/22)
9) The Black Tulip (1/25)
10) *Manon Lescaut (2/2)
11) The Penguin Pool Murder (2/8)
12) Psmith in the City (2/11)
13) *Tom Brown's Schooldays (2/12)
14) *The Sweet Cheat Gone (2/23)
15) John Bull's Other Island (2/24) (read as part of my omnibus "The Plays of Shaw")
16) Playing With Poison (2/25)
17) Local Custom (3/5)
18) *Fathers and Sons (3/13)
19) *Infinite Jest (4/7)
20) He Dies and Makes No Sign (4/18)
21) The Enchanted April (4/20)
22) Cadmium Yellow, Blood Red (4/22)
23) April's Lady (4/29)
24) The Head of Kay's (5/4)
25) *Augustus Carp, Esq. (5/5)
26) The Hundredth Queen (5/12)
27) Queen Margot (5/27)
28) Information Received (6/6)
29) *Kindred (6/16)
30) *Germinal (6/29)
31) Do Not Disturb (8/4)
32) Out of Sorts (8/20)
33) A Deadly Draught (8/22)
34) The One You Love (8/29)
35) The Beautiful and Damned (9/9)
36) King Henry IV, Part 1 (9/14) (read as part of my omnibus "The Complete Works of Shakespeare")
37) Elusive (9/15)
38) *England, Their England (9/17)
39) *The Belles Lettres Papers (9/25)

 Dad's Kindle:
 1) Jester Leaps In (2/14)
 2) Game of Mirrors (3/5)
 3) A Beam of Light (3/30)
 4) Unexpected Night (4/10)
 5) Died in the Wool (4/30)
 6) John Macnab (6/3)
 7) A Voice in the Night (6/30)
 8) The Dancing Floor (8/25)
 9) Bruno, Chief of Police (9/13)

1) Vivian Apple at the End of the World (1/12)
2) Monster (1/17)
3) *Metamorphosis (1/22)
4) Juba! (2/9)
5) Psmith in the City (2/11)
6) The Eye of the World (2/17)
7) Pennies for Hitler (2/23)
8) Between Shades of Gray (3/3)
9) *Rebecca (3/23)
10) I'll Give You the Sun (3/25)
11) *I Am Legend (3/28)
12) A Man Called Ove (4/1)
13) Curiosity Thrilled the Cat (4/13)
14) Utopia (4/24)
15) Blue Monday (5/3)
16) The Wreath (5/7) (the first book in the omnibus Kristin Lavransdatter)
17) Rebuttal (5/30)
18) The Wife (6/11) (the second book in the omnibus Kristin Lavransdatter)
19) Redeployment (6/21)
20) The Secret History of the Pink Carnation (6/24)
21) The Hobbit (7/10)
22) Of Beast and Beauty (8/24)
23) Born a Crime (8/25)
24) The Beautiful and Damned (9/9)
25) The Book of Unknown Americans (9/11)
26) Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage (9/23)
27) Beast (9/25)
28) Bone Gap (10/3)

Dec 21, 2017, 9:58am Top

I'm happy to see you're back. Happy ROOTing!

Dec 21, 2017, 3:38pm Top

Dec 22, 2017, 6:51am Top

Welcome back. Wishing you wonderful reading whilst ROOTing.

Dec 22, 2017, 9:02am Top

Happy 2018 rooting!

Dec 22, 2017, 11:04am Top

Good to see you, leslie and good luck with ROOTing

Dec 22, 2017, 12:42pm Top

Good luck with your 2018 reading too >4 majkia:, >5 tess_schoolmarm: and >6 connie53:!

Dec 22, 2017, 10:53pm Top

Welcome back, Leslie! Good luck in 2018!

Dec 23, 2017, 12:54pm Top

Welcome back! You had an epic year in 2017, I hope 2018 is more of the same!

Dec 25, 2017, 1:30am Top

Good luck with your ROOTing in 2018!

Dec 26, 2017, 6:58pm Top

Glad you're with us again!

Dec 30, 2017, 7:23pm Top

Happy ROOTing, Leslie!

Jan 1, 3:25am Top

Happy New Year, Leslie!

Jan 1, 1:30pm Top

Welcome back, and happy ROOTing!

Jan 1, 3:23pm Top

Happy reading in 2018, Leslie!

Edited: Jan 2, 10:59am Top

Wow, thanks for all the posts welcoming me! I have a nice warm feeling now (which is sorely needed in this cold weather!) :-)

Jan 2, 10:59am Top

And my first ROOT of 2018 is done! *The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists has been on my Kindle since August 2012. While I thought it was a very good book, I wish that I hadn't chosen to read it during the holiday season as it was quite depressing. 4*

Jan 4, 10:10am Top

Congrats on your first ROOT!

Jan 4, 10:55am Top

It's a good feeling to have one under my belt, >18 MissWatson:, especially as I have already succumbed to the siren call of the library!

Jan 4, 11:00am Top

Dangerous shoals, those library shelves!

Jan 4, 3:43pm Top

The library keeps me from reading my ROOTs a lot of the time, especially when there are books with holds on them so they have to be read and returned in a hurry.

Jan 4, 6:58pm Top

>17 leslie.98: great review, Leslie! The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist is on my TBR too. Useful tip that there's a free audiobook - this might help assuage my dread of tackling it, because I've started it and given up several times!

Jan 4, 10:59pm Top

>22 floremolla: It took me a while to get into it but once I sorted out the cast of characters I got interested in their fates. And the LibriVox recording was worth listening to!

Jan 4, 11:05pm Top

ROOT #2, print #1, was the 4th Aurelio Zen book - *Dead Lagoon. This is one of several Dibdin books I got from my parents when they sold their house in 2009. I found this one a little slower to engage me but by the end, I was glued to the page. 4*

Jan 6, 8:03pm Top

ROOT #3, Kindle 2, is barely a ROOT as it is a Kindle book I bought in December 2017! But according to my rules, it counts (as a previously unread book owned prior to 1 January 2018). This was The Ice Princess, the first in a Swedish mystery series. I enjoyed it but it was a bit overly long (as I find many contemporary mysteries to be) & the big secret, the clue to unravelling the mystery, was obvious about a third of the way in. 3½*

Jan 8, 9:30pm Top

ROOT #4, Kindle 3, is a book I got in Jan. 2014 - Mike, the first book in the Psmith series. A bit too much cricket for this non-sporting American but I still enjoyed the shenanigans of the boys in this story. 3*

Jan 10, 9:11pm Top

ROOT #5 was another Kindle book, The Captive, the 5th book in Proust's series "In Search of Lost Time". I got most of the series free last year from Feedbooks.com but didn't manage to actually read them all. While Proust's style will never be a favorite of mine (what with the extremely long sentences & long digressions), I do find that the further I get in the series, the more interesting I find the books. 3½*

Jan 12, 11:39am Top

ROOT #6, Print #2, was the 7th book in the Nero Wolfe series, Over My Dead Body. While Wolfe is back to his typical self (not leaving home like in the previous 2!), some of his personal background is revealed in this one. Archie seemed a bit more hardboiled than I remember! The series remains poised on the edge between hardboiled & Golden Age in style, a tricky feat that Stout manages to perfection. 4*

Jan 12, 11:48am Top

ROOT #7, audio #1, was a YA dystopian novel I got in May 2016 through the SYNC program -- Vivian Apple at the End of the World. The main plot seemed like an imitation of Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale with the usual YA stuff added in. It wasn't bad but the most interesting feature (and an important difference from Atwood's world) was introduced then glossed over and ignored (perhaps to allow for a sequel?). 2½* for the book, 3* for the audiobook.

Jan 15, 11:19am Top

ROOT #8, Kindle #5, was Black Diamond Death. It was okay but the reader doesn't have a chance to figure out the solution. 2½*

Jan 17, 5:22pm Top

I finished 2 more ROOTs today as the snow lightly fell...

#9, Audiobook #2, was one of the 2015 SYNC offerings: Monster with a full cast narration. I gave the audiobook edition 4* but am still waffling between 3 & 4 for the book itself...

#10, Kindle #6, was a Kindle book I picked up in 2012 -- *Martin Eden. This novel is unlike Jack London's more famous dog stories & as much as I like those, I liked this even more! 4½*

Jan 20, 3:42pm Top

#11 was Kindle 7, a mystery I picked up in 2013 -- The Vanishing Man. It turns out to be the 3rd book of the Thorndyke series, which I hadn't realized. Luckily I happened to have read the first book in this series last fall! I enjoyed this very much and look forward to reading more of this series (though they won't be ROOTs this year). 4*

Jan 20, 9:06pm Top

ROOT 12, print #3, was a paperback I picked up last spring when the library at my parents' retirement community weeded their collection -- Colette's The Vagabond. Still mulling over what I think about it but it was beautifully written. 4*

Jan 21, 1:36am Top

Following my comment >32 leslie.98:, I managed to pick up 20 or so Thorndyke books (free Kindle editions) today so I will be well equipped with ROOTs for next year (or more!).

Edited: Jan 24, 6:29pm Top

>34 leslie.98: One of my friends is working her way through Thorndyke as well, although I think she gets hers from Gutenberg Australia. Will have to ask her which ones she's read. She really likes them, from what I hear.

Jan 24, 12:36pm Top

Wow, look at you go! *applause* :)

Jan 24, 12:43pm Top

Thanks >36 LauraBrook:! After that big haul of Thorndyke books, I will have to read like mad to catch up with my acquisitions *grin*

Jan 24, 12:47pm Top

ROOT #13 was Kindle 8 & audiobook 3 -- Franz Kafka's Metamorphosis. I got the Kindle edition back in 2012 from Project Gutenberg & the audiobook last August from SYNC. I found the more modern translation by Richard Stokes used in the audiobook better than the David Wyllie translation in my Kindle edition (plus it was a treat to listen to Martin Jarvis) so I give 4* to the audio edition but only 3½* to the Kindle edition.

Edited: Jan 25, 8:42pm Top

ROOT #14 was paperback #4, Robinson by Muriel Spark, one of the many books I got from my folks back in 2009. Bizarre yet compelling pseudo-mystery story of 3 people stranded by an airplane crash on a small island occupied only by Robinson and a young boy. 3½*

Edited: Jan 25, 8:44pm Top

#15 was Kindle 9, The Black Tulip by Dumas, which has been languishing on my Kindle since Feb. 2011. Nice blend of historical fiction, adventure and romance set in 1672 Holland. 3½*

Edited: Jan 26, 12:49pm Top

ROOT #16 was my 5th print book, a stand-alone by Michael Innes called Money From Holme. This book was one of the many I got when my parents moved back in 2009. Lots of fun though strictly speaking it isn't a mystery at all. 4*

Jan 28, 11:14am Top

ROOT 17 was my 6th print book, Where There's a Will, the 8th book in the Nero Wolfe series. This is Wolfe and Archie as I remembered them although I had not read this one before. Wolfe does briefly leave his house in this one (to visit the client's home) which surprised both me and Archie! 3½*

Edited: Jan 30, 2:17pm Top

January Progress: 6 Print, 17 total ROOTS {acquired: 37}
Year to date: 6 print, 17 total ROOTS {37 acquired}

New books obtained: (all Kindle editions unless otherwise noted)
The Abbey Court Murder
Twist of Faith (January Kindle First freebie)
Zeno's Conscience
Dragonflight (Kindle edition, I already own the paperback)
The Murder at Sissingham Hall (freebie)
The Puzzle of the Silver Persian
Arrest the Bishop? (freebie)
The Chalk Circle Man
That Day the Rabbi Left Town
Innocent Bystander
The Lucky Stiff
The Clue (Project Gutenberg)
Scout's Progress
I Dare
The Great Hunt (audiobook)
The Power House (Project Gutenberg Australia)
The Blessing Way

Dr. Thorndyke Mysteries: all free from Feedbooks.com except where noted
John Thorndyke's Cases (Project Gutenberg)
The Mystery of 31 New Inn (Project Gutenberg)
The Singing Bone
A Silent Witness
The Great Portrait Mystery (free on Amazon)
Helen Vardon's Confession
The Cat's Eye
The Shadow of the Wolf
The D'Arblay Mystery
A Certain Dr Thorndyke
As a Thief in the Night
Mr Pottermack's Oversight
Pontifex Son and Thorndyke
When Rogues Fall Out
For the Defence, Dr. Thorndyke
The Penrose Mystery
Felo de Se
The Stoneware Monkey
Mr Polton Explains
The Jacob Street Mystery

Crossed out books have already been read.

Jan 30, 2:19pm Top

The very generous gift card for Amazon that I got for Xmas has led to me getting more books than usual this month, as you can see!

Jan 30, 4:20pm Top

I have never read any on your list of newbies, but I hope you enjoy reading them!

Jan 31, 10:28am Top

>45 tess_schoolmarm: Thanks -- I will need to be careful with my acquisitions the rest of the year if I am going to end up reading more ROOTs than the number of new books I get!

Feb 2, 1:40pm Top

ROOT 18 (Kindle #10) was the French classic *Manon Lescaut. I really didn't care for it much which is a shame. I don't know who did the translation but perhaps a more modern translation would have helped (but I doubt it). 2*

Feb 8, 8:29pm Top

After a massive start in January, I seem to have slowed down this month! The siren call of the library has been too much for me...

ROOT 19 (Kindle #11) was a new-to-me Golden Age mystery series - The Penguin Pool Murder was the 1931 start of the Hildegarde Withers series, a series which I have long enjoyed in movie adaptations starring Edna May Oliver. I found this first one entertaining even though I did figure out the guilty party about halfway through (though upon reflection I may have subconsciously remembered it from the 1932 movie!).

Feb 9, 12:53pm Top

Audiobook #4 (overall ROOT #20) was an audiobook I got in July 2016 from the SYNC program -- Juba!. An interesting historical fiction look at the life of "Boz's Juba" (William Henry Lane), a young black dancer who, in the 1840s, helped to create tap dancing by blending Irish jigs & reels with African rhythms. 3½*

Feb 9, 6:11pm Top

>48 leslie.98: Story of my life :) The Penguin Pool Murder is an adorable title.

Feb 9, 9:19pm Top

>50 rabbitprincess: The penguins even manage to help deliver a clue days after the murder :)

Feb 10, 6:00am Top

>50 rabbitprincess: >51 leslie.98: I have a friend who collects all things penguin - I can feel a gift coming on! :)

Feb 10, 12:35pm Top

>52 Jackie_K: Oh it would be a great gift for a penguin fan :)

Feb 12, 12:42am Top

Audiobook #5 (acquired in Dec. 2017) and Kindle #12 (downloaded sometime in early 2012) was Psmith in the City, the second book in Wodehouse's Psmith series. Psmith is much more humorous in this one. Despite the title, Psmith isn't alone in this book; Mike Jackson is again at his side. 4* from this Wodehouse fan.

Edited: Feb 14, 1:15pm Top

Kindle #13, overall ROOT 22, was Tom Brown's Schooldays. It struck me as being the boys' version of Louisa May Alcott's Little Women - the same mixture of stories of childhood adventures and moralizing. Not being a boy nor from England, this one didn't make the same connection with me that Alcott's classic did. 3½*

Feb 17, 8:59pm Top

ROOT #23 was audiobook #6, The Eye of the World - the first book in the Wheel of Time series. I bought this at the end of December so it is barely a ROOT at all! So glad that I have already bought the second book :) 4* or maybe even 4.5...

Edited: Feb 18, 9:21pm Top

My first print ROOT of the month (#7 of the year) was the 10th Nero Wolfe book, Not Quite Dead Enough. This entry in the series is actually 2 novellas rather than a single novel; in both, Archie is now in the military! 3*

That brings my total to 24.

Feb 23, 4:57pm Top

ROOT 25 (audiobook #7) was Pennies for Hitler, an audiobook I got July 2016. Pretty good YA book about WW2 as told from the perspective of a young boy, half-English & half-German, who is smuggled out of Nazi Germany in 1939. 4*

Edited: Feb 24, 10:50pm Top

ROOT 26 (Kindle #14) was the penultimate volume in Proust's Remembrance of Things Past, The Sweet Cheat Gone. The best of the series yet -- short and lots of stuff happened. 4*

Feb 24, 10:46pm Top

ROOT 27 (Kindle #15) was a play in my omnibus edition of "The Plays of Shaw" (owned since Jan. 2015) -- John Bull's Other Island. I wish that I was able to see a performance of this, or even listen to an audiobook edition, but based upon reading the text, I give it 3½*.

Edited: Feb 25, 7:38pm Top

ROOT 28 was my second print ROOT of the month (8th of the year) -- The Photograph by Penelope Lively. I picked this up at my local library's book sale in 2015 and wish now I had read it sooner. 4*

Feb 25, 10:29pm Top

ROOT 29 was Kindle 16, a cozy mystery I have had since Dec. 2012 -- Playing With Poison. Not bad cozy, with a female protagonist in her early 50s. 3*

Edited: Mar 3, 3:08pm Top

ROOT #30 is my first for the month of March -- audiobook #8, acquired in Aug. 2017, was Between Shades of Gray. An excellent historical fiction novel about the deportation & imprisonment of Lithuanians in gulags during the late 1930s as Stalin & Hitler divvy up the Balkans. Emily Klein does a great narration and I much appreciated the author's comments at the end of the book. 4½*

Mar 5, 2:45pm Top

ROOT #31 (Kindle 17) was Local Custom, a Liaden book I bought last October. I do enjoy this series! 4*

Edited: Mar 7, 2:06pm Top

I have decided, upon consulting the group thread, that books on my Dad's Kindle count as ROOTs so I have added 2 books to my total (bringing me up to 33):

Jester Leaps In, read in February, is the second in a historical fiction mystery series. Not quite as good as the first book but still very interesting. 3½*

Game of Mirrors, #18 in the Inspector Montalbano series. A great series! 3½*

Mar 10, 12:14pm Top

>65 leslie.98: I think that is a good decision, Leslie! I did not comment in the group thread but I thought the same thing as was said there.

Mar 13, 10:36pm Top

Mar 13, 10:37pm Top

ROOT 34 was Kindle book 18, *Fathers and Sons, which I got from manybooks.net back in 2012. Easy to read (always something I worry about with Russian novels) and bittersweet. 4*

Mar 15, 10:26pm Top

Print #9 (overall 35) was the 3rd Inspector Mallett book, Suicide Excepted. Very good Golden Age mystery (even if Mallett plays a surprisingly small part!). 4*

Mar 22, 11:23am Top

Print 10 & 11 were both mysteries I got when my parents sold their house -- #10 was another Nero Wolfe, The Silent Speaker, and #11, Green Shiver, was by a previously unknown to me author of Golden Age mysteries -- Clyde B. Clason. Too bad that I started with the last book though.

That brings my total up to 37.

Edited: Mar 25, 11:05pm Top

ROOT #38 was audiobook 9, another SYNC offering from July 2015 -- *Rebecca. Absolutely wonderful! 4½*

Mar 25, 11:09pm Top

#39 was another SYNC audiobook, this time from June 2016, I'll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson. While well-written, I felt that some of the more difficult issues raised were skimmed over, leaving me with the impression that they had been included just to be "edgy" and make the book more popular rather than in an attempt to make a serious effort to deal with them. 3* for the book & an extra ½ star for the audiobook edition.

Mar 28, 4:14pm Top

#40 was one of the audiobook freebies Audible had last November -- I Am Legend. While horror & vampire stories are not my usual kind of reading, once I got immersed in the story, this novella grew on me. Very dark but, for me, that was more due to Robert Neville's solitary condition than the vampires. 4*

Mar 29, 6:55pm Top

ROOT #41 was my 12th print ROOT, If on a winter's night a traveler. I am so glad that I tried this, despite the fact that I didn't much like the only other Calvino I have read (Invisible Cities) -- I found this funny and intriguing, a real Reader's book :) 4½*

Mar 30, 6:23pm Top

ROOT 42 was one of the mysteries on my Dad's Kindle, the 19th Inspector Montalbano book A Beam of Light. While the mystery was okay, it was really what was happening in Montalbano's personal life that made this one worth reading. 3½*

Apr 2, 8:54pm Top

First ROOT of April was audiobook #12 (overall 43) - A Man Called Ove. I got this in Jan. 2017 and really enjoyed it once I got a few chapters into it. 4*

Edited: Apr 9, 7:17pm Top

ROOT #44 was print #13, The Underground Man, a Lew Archer mystery (and also finished the omnibus Archer, P.I.). This is the last of the Ross MacDonald books I got from my father. I didn't like Lew Archer as much as he did but they are decent examples of the hard-boiled private eye subgenre. 3.5*

ROOT #45 was Kindle 19 - *Infinite Jest (finally!). I have been reading this since January and it is unusual for me to take that long, even with a book of this length. Bizarre book which I can best describe as leaving me feeling the way I did after I watched Fellini's film - as if I just could get a little more information, I would finally know what was going on. 3* rating for now...

ROOT #46 was print 14, the next installment of my stroll through the Inspector Mallett series, Tragedy at Law. Very clever & introduces Francis Pettigrew who appears in some later books (both with & without Inspector Mallett). 4*

Apr 10, 9:28pm Top

ROOT #47 was a Golden Age mystery off my Dad's Kindle, Unexpected Night, the first in the Henry Gamadge series. I liked Henry & the mystery was clever but the Kindle edition had some formatting problems which caused me to dock half a star. 3*

Apr 13, 4:58pm Top

ROOT #48 was a cozy mystery audiobook I picked up in July 2015 -- Curiosity Thrilled the Cat. While it wasn't bad, I thought the idea of the "magical" cats was forced and unnecessary. 2-2.5*

Apr 15, 2:30pm Top

Almost at the halfway point, Leslie and the year is not even half way over. You are doing great!

Edited: Apr 15, 8:52pm Top

Thanks Connie -- I still find the siren call of the library hard to resist but am trying hard to make my ROOTs a priority.

Edited: Apr 16, 6:51am Top

Great progress, Leslie and well done on finishing Infinite Jest. I suspect you're not alone in wondering what was going on! I'm planning to tackle it later this year. Maybe I should research it a bit before committing myself!

Apr 16, 10:05am Top

It's a book that I can now see rereading as I think that I would enjoy it more now that I know the basic outline, >82 floremolla:.

Apr 18, 7:05pm Top

ROOT 49 was my 20th Kindle root, a Golden Age mystery called He Dies and Makes No Sign by Molly Thynne. This is the 3rd and final book in the Dr. Constantine series & had more action at the end than I had expected! A solid 3½* read.

Apr 21, 11:00am Top

Halfway point! ROOT 50 was a Kindle book I picked up back in 2013 when I discovered the website girlebooks.com -- The Enchanted April. Overall, I found it charming though Mrs. Wilkens' visions were a bit over the top. 4*

Apr 22, 2:19am Top


Apr 22, 10:09am Top

Congrats! I'm glad to see you liked The enchanted April, so did I.

Apr 22, 10:03pm Top

Thanks Connie!

>87 MissWatson: I am glad that I waited to read it in the month of April as I think that it added to my enjoyment ;)

Apr 22, 10:06pm Top

Root 51 was a mystery I picked up as a Kindle freebie back in Dec. 2013 -- Cadmium Yellow, Blood Red. I liked the historical setting but found the main character a bit too unbelievable. 2*

Apr 25, 11:29am Top

ROOT 52 (audiobook 14) was an audiobook freebie I got last August -- Sir Thomas More's Utopia. While I thought some aspects of his idyllic society were good, overall I found the book dated and on the dull side. 2*

Edited: Apr 29, 5:16pm Top

ROOT 53 was print #15, a book from the Guardian's list I picked up several years ago at a library sale: Underworld. Not for me, I am afraid, though I did manage to make it through all 827 pages! 2*

Edited: Apr 29, 5:16pm Top

ROOT 54, Kindle 22, was a Victorian romance I picked up from Project Gutenberg back when I had first discovered public domain ebooks (2012 or so) called April's Lady. It was the style of romance that I like but Hungerford's prose was a bit overly flowery for me in places and the book lacked that touch of gentle humor that I like so much in Jane Austen and Georgette Heyer. Still, not a bad book to spend an evening with... 2½*

ROOT 55 (print 16) was another Nero Wolfe book -- And Be a Villain. Archie & Wolfe were up to their standard forms and this book introduces the criminal mastermind Arnold Zech (Stout's version of Moriarty) who appears in several other books in the series. 3½*

Apr 30, 10:35pm Top

ROOT #56 was another book from my Dad's Kindle, Died in the Wool by Ngaio Marsh. While I liked the New Zealand setting, this isn't one of her best... 3*

May 4, 9:49am Top

ROOT #57 was an audiobook I got free in 2016 from Penguin Random House -- Blue Monday. It started off OK but there were several things in the second half that were either obvious or silly, so I ended up giving the book 2.5* with a boost to 3* for the audiobook.

May 4, 7:21pm Top

ROOT #58 was a public domain Kindle book I picked up in August 2012 -- The Head of Kay's. This is one of Wodehouse's "School Stories" and is just that - the story of a few boys at a minor public school. I enjoyed it but it lacked the zanier humor of his best work. 3*

Edited: May 8, 12:34am Top

ROOT #59 was *Augustus Carp, Esq., a Kindle book I got in August 2012. While I could intellectually see the humor, it wasn't a laugh out loud book. 3*

ROOT #60 was the first book in the trilogy Kristin Lavransdatter, The Wreath by Nobel Laureate Sigrid Undset. While I liked the setting (14th century Norway) and the writing, I am less certain that I like the characters. So I am uncertain of my rating for this... for now, let's say 3.5*

ROOT #61 was another Cyril Hare mystery - With a Bare Bodkin. I found Hare’s setting in this one very amusing (a satire of WW2 British bureaucracy, it’s set in the Bureau of Pin Control and has a subplot about black market trading in pins!) and the mystery was very good. I thought that I had figured it out but not so! 4-4.5*

May 12, 10:28pm Top

ROOT 62 was a Kindle First freebie from May 2017 -- a YA fantasy novel called The Hundredth Queen. Not as bad as I had feared partway through but a bit too much YA for me and the world building could have been a bit stronger. 2½*

Edited: Jun 17, 7:42pm Top

I have been away from my computer for several weeks - RL intervening once again. Since mid-May, I have managed to finish 9 more ROOTs. I have updated my first post & ticker but won't be giving individual summaries.

Paperback books (and hardcovers!)
18. Look to the Lady (5/14); 3*; owned since May 2009
19. The Wind Blows Death (6/5); 3.5*; owned since 2009
20. The Second Confession (6/15); 4*; owned since 2009

and additional formats:
Kindle books
27. Queen Margot, or Marguerite de Valois (5/27); 4*; owned since Nov. 2017
28. Information Received (6/6); 3.5*; owned since Feb. 2017
29. *Kindred (6/16); 4*; owned since Feb. 2017

Dad's Kindle:
6. John Macnab (6/3); 4*

17. Rebuttal (5/30); 3*; owned since July 2017
18. The Wife (6/11); 4*; owned since Dec. 2017 {read as part of the omnibus Kristin Lavransdatter}

And that brings me to 71 ROOTs finished!

Jun 21, 4:41pm Top

ROOT 72 (audiobook 19) was Redeployment, an audiobook freebie I got via Penguin Random House in May 2017. 3.5*

Jun 22, 10:18pm Top

ROOT 73 (print 21) was Lucia's Progress, read in my omnibus Make Way for Lucia. I thought that I had read this before but it turns out that I hadn't (yay for the unexpected ROOT!). I enjoy Benson's humor very much and the rivalry between Miss Mapp (now Mrs. Mapp-Flint) and Lucia continues to amuse me in this 5th entry in the series. 4*

Jun 25, 12:26pm Top

ROOT 74 (audio 20) was The Secret History of the Pink Carnation. I got the free audiobook edition of this back in July 2015 from Penguin Random House Audio (I already owned the paperback). While it was a mostly fun book, I found that I didn't care for it as much on this reread as I had before - I was more aware the aspects that struck me as anachronistic (or inaccurate) & my willingness to put up with sex as a synonym for romance has declined in recent years. I still enjoyed the contemporary sections... 3.5*

Jul 1, 10:12am Top

3 more ROOTs finished in the final few days of June bringing my up to 77 done:

*The Group is a paperback I got in 2009 when my folks sold their house. I really enjoyed this! 4.5*

*Germinal is a Kindle book I acquired in 2012 -- it was powerful but I can't say that I 'enjoyed' it (too bleak). 4*

A Voice in the Night, #20 in the Inspector Montalbano series, was from my Dad's Kindle (so 2017). I thought it was a touch better than the previous 2 books in the series. 4*

Jul 27, 9:21am Top

I managed to read 5 ROOTs during July, 4 print and 1 audiobook, bringing me to a total of 82. I have updated my ticker and the master list in post 1

Edited: Aug 4, 11:37am Top

First ROOT of August done - another Nero Wolfe, In the Best Families, the 17th in the series. One of the best so far! 4.5* This is ROOT #84

Aug 4, 4:05pm Top

ROOT 85 was a Kindle book I picked up for free back in June 2013 - Do Not Disturb, the second book in a historical fiction cozy mystery series called the Pennyfoot Hotel series. It was OK but I am glad that I didn't pay for it... 2.5*

Aug 11, 2:39am Top

>98 leslie.98: Same here. RL gets in the way to many times. So now I'm catching up on threads and visiting yours.

Aug 20, 12:30am Top

ROOT 86, my 29th print ROOT, was Drink to Yesterday. I loved it! A WW1 spy story of just the kind I like.

Aug 20, 10:57pm Top

ROOT 87 was the Kindle book Out of Sorts, which was my Amazon Prime Kindle First freebie back in Dec. 2015. Basically a French version of A Man Called Ove; it was pleasant enough but didn't have the depth of characters that Backman's book had. 3*

Aug 22, 11:53pm Top

ROOT 88 was a Kindle freebie I picked up in March 2013 - A Deadly Draught. A decent cozy mystery, though the romantic subplot was predictable and mundane. 3*

Aug 24, 3:20pm Top

ROOT #89 was an audiobook I got from the SYNC program last June - Of Beast and Beauty. The narration was very good but I found the plot predictable. 3*

Aug 25, 6:21pm Top

ROOT #90 was an Audible freebie I picked up in Dec. 2016 - Born a Crime, the memoir by comedian Trevor Noah. I thought that it was great! 4.5*

Aug 26, 9:55am Top

ROOT #91 was a Kindle book from my Dad's Kindle, The Dancing Floor. This is the 3rd book in the Sir Edward Leithen series by John Buchan and the one I liked the least so far. 3*

Aug 29, 2:23pm Top

ROOT #92 was a Kindle freebie I got in August 2012 - The One You Love. It was an OK thriller though I thought the main character was not very believable... 2.5*

Sep 8, 6:37pm Top

ROOT #93 (print 30) was a book I bought at my local library's book sale back in June 2015 -- *The Road. I gave this 3* but that came from my indecision between 2* and 4*. It is, I suspect, somewhat of a 'marmite' book -- you either really like it or really dislike it. I disliked the writing style but felt McCarthy did a terrific job in world-building. His dystopian world was incredibly bleak, which was depressing but convincing.

Edited: Sep 9, 2:34pm Top

ROOT #94 (print 31) was another of the many books I got when my parents sold their house in 2009 - *Death of the Heart. Not my type of book (character study with not much action) and other than Portia, the characters seemed unreal to me. But beautifully written so I ended up giving it 3*.

ROOT #95 (audio 24 & Kindle 35) was a Kindle/audio Whispersync freebie I picked up last May - The Beautiful and Damned. 3.5* for the book with an extra half star for the narration by William Dufris.

To be honest, I liked this novel more than I expected to (not being a big fan of Fitzgerald).

Edited: Sep 10, 6:36pm Top

ROOT #96 (print 32) was the final book in my omnibus Make Way For Lucia (another of the books I got in 2009) -- Trouble for Lucia. A good ending for the series & lots of fun to read. 4* The only thing left in the omnibus still to read is the short story The Male Impersonator.

Sep 11, 11:11pm Top

ROOT #97 (audio 25) was a book I got in August 2016 from the SYNC program - The Book of Unknown Americans. The ending ruined the book for me so just 3.5*

ROOT #98 (print 33) was another Rex Stout - Murder by the Book. Very good full length mystery! 4*

Sep 14, 1:54pm Top

ROOT #99 was one off my Dad's Kindle - Bruno, Chief of Police, the first in Martin Walker's mystery series. Great setting & Bruno is an interesting police chief, one whose loyalty is to the welfare of his community rather than to the strict adherence of the law. 3.5*

Sep 14, 7:43pm Top

ROOT #100 was Shakespeare's play King Henry IV, Part 1, read in my Kindle omnibus edition of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (bought in 2015). I find reading Shakespeare difficult and in the end resorted to Sparknotes "No Fear Shakespeare" with its modern translation for some parts. I would like to see a performance of this play but based on the text, I give it 3*.

Sep 16, 7:50pm Top

ROOT #101 (Kindle 37) was a freebie I got back in 2014 - Elusive by Sara Rosett. Above average for a freebie; decent writing and plenty of suspense. The plot was not very original (shades of Robert Ludlum and Helen McInnes) but still enjoyable. 3.5*

Edited: Sep 22, 5:50pm Top

ROOT #102 (Kindle 38) was *England, Their England, which I bought last year. I found it extremely amusing - 4*

Sep 22, 5:50pm Top

ROOT #103 (print 34) was *The Bell Jar which I have owned since June 2015. It took me a long time to get into it but by the end, I was glad I had persevered. 4*

Sep 23, 3:09pm Top

ROOT #104 (audio 26) was an Audible freebie last November - Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage. While I found the book itself quite exciting and interesting, the narrator Simon Prebble just didn't work for me. So 4* for the book but only 3* for this audiobook edition.

Sep 25, 12:42pm Top

ROOT 105 (audio 27) was one of the SYNC program audiobooks last summer (June 2017) - Beast by Donna Jo Napoli. I didn't much like this version of Beauty and the Beast, though I can't seem to pin down what was wrong with it. 2*

Oct 3, 5:38pm Top

ROOT 106 (Kindle #39) was *The Belles Lettres Papers. I was a tad disappointed that it wasn't funnier so only 3½*…

ROOT #107 (audio 28) was Bone Gap, one of the 2016 SYNC offerings. I didn't much care for the magical realism but it was well narrated. 2½*

Oct 13, 2:15am Top

Congrats on reaching your goal, Leslie! Good job.

Yesterday, 12:53pm Top


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