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rabbitprincess exterminates the TBR pile in 2018

2018 ROOT (READ OUR OWN TOMES)

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1rabbitprincess
Edited: Dec 21, 2017, 9:50pm Top

Back again for another year of ROOT reading in which I hope to EXTERMINATE some of the to-read pile.



Picture taken at Waterstones Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow, Scotland, in 2013.

As usual, my goal is 50 ROOTs. My only rule is that I have to own the book. Rereads count, because after all they are part of my library and I want to enjoy them just as much as the new books.




And in an effort to revisit some oldies but goodies, Operation Going Through the Stacks is still under way.




Also join me on my thoroughly demoralizing quest to read two books for every new one added to my library. bragan introduced me to this idea, and I think she had better luck with it than I did! I went into serious "debt" last year from my trip to Hay-on-Wye, Wales, and Bouchercon in Toronto.

The rules of the 2-for-1 TBR in my case: I don't count rereads in my favour, but I don't count gifts, duplicate copies of books I already own, or freebies against me.


2rabbitprincess
Edited: Sep 11, 9:24pm Top

This is the third year in which I've created a pool of books from which to choose. Last year's was not as successful as the year before, so I've scaled down the 2018 pool to just over 30 titles.



2018 Reading List

Italics = books off the shelf. Bold = Favourite book of the month. Parenthetical notes will indicate audio, rereads, and other relevant information.

January
1. The Diary of River Song, Series 1 (Big Finish audio drama)
2. Sting of the Zygons, by Stephen Cole
3. Revolution in the Head: The Beatles’ Music and the Sixties, by Ian MacDonald
4. The Colony of Unrequited Dreams, by Robert Chafe
5. Quick Curtain, by Alan Melville
6. Occupied City, by David Peace
7. The Black Arrow, by Robert Louis Stevenson
8. The Last Highlander: Scotland's Most Notorious Clan-Chief, Rebel and Double-Agent, by Sarah Fraser (abandoned)
9. The Dead House, by Harry Bingham
10. Heart and Brain: Body Language, by The Awkward Yeti
11. American Gods, by Neil Gaiman
12. The Resurrection Casket, by Justin Richards
13. Curse of the Narrows: The Halifax Explosion 1917, by Laura M. MacDonald
14. Those Who Walk Away, by Patricia Highsmith
15. Nemesis, by Agatha Christie
16. Norse Mythology, by Neil Gaiman (Overdrive)
17. Track Changes: A Literary History of Word Processing, by Matthew G. Kirschenbaum
18. Girl Waits with Gun, by Amy Stewart
19. Why Spencer Perceval Had to Die: The Assassination of a British Prime Minister, by Andro Linklater
20. The Shadow District, by Arnaldur Indridason (translated by Victoria Cribb)

February
21. Women & Power: A Manifesto, by Mary Beard
22. At Home: A Short History of Private Life, by Bill Bryson (audio, read by Bill Bryson)
23. The North Water, by Ian McGuire
24. Arthurian Romances, by Chrétien de Troyes (reread)
25. The Power, by Naomi Alderman
26. The Butchering Art: Joseph Lister’s Quest to Transform the World of Grisly Victorian Medicine, by Lindsey Fitzharris
27. Campbell’s Kingdom, by Hammond Innes
28. The Grave’s a Fine and Private Place, by Alan Bradley
29. Kipling: A Selection of His Stories and Poems Volume 1, by Rudyard Kipling
30. Never Use Futura, by Douglas Thomas
31. Have Not Been the Same: The CanRock Renaissance 1985-1995, by Michael Barclay, Ian A.D. Jack, and Jason Schneider
32. The Diary of River Song, Series 2 (Big Finish audio drama)
33. You're All Just Jealous of My Jetpack, by Tom Gauld
34. Beau Death, by Peter Lovesey — 3.5 stars
35. The Birds and Other Stories, by Daphne du Maurier
36. The Hare Book, ed. Jane Russ
37. Usque Ad Mare: A History of Canada’s Coast Guard and Marine Services, by Thomas E. Appleton
38. The Miller’s Dance, by Winston Graham
39. Baking with Kafka, by Tom Gauld
40. Mortal Causes, by Ian Rankin
41. Game Change: The Life and Death of Steve Montador, Brain Injuries, and the Future of the Game, by Ken Dryden
42. Malice Aforethought, by Francis Iles
43. The Life of a Scilly Sergeant, by Colin Taylor
44. The Subversive Copy Editor (2nd edition), by Carol Fisher Saller

March
45. His Bloody Project, by Graeme Macrae Burnet
46. A History of Ancient Britain, by Neil Oliver
47. Places in the Darkness, by Chris Brookmyre
48. Blood on the Tongue, by Stephen Booth
49. The Illustrated Dust Jacket 1920-1970, by Martin Salisbury
50. Someone to Watch Over Me, by Yrsa Sigurdardottir (translated by Philip Roughton)
51. Arcadian Adventures with the Idle Rich, by Stephen Leacock
52. Bertie and the Seven Bodies, by Peter Lovesey
53. Timekeepers: How the World Became Obsessed with Time, by Simon Garfield
54. The Incredible Crime, by Lois Austen-Leigh
55. The World of Poldark, by Emma Marriott
56. Rabbit Cake, by Annie Hartnett
57. Cause Célèbre, by Terence Rattigan
58. The Slitheen Excursion, by Simon Guerrier
59. The End of the Affair, by Graham Greene (audio, read by Colin Firth)
60. The Loving Cup, by Winston Graham
61. Death on the Riviera, by John Bude
62. Doctor Who: Dalek: The Astounding Untold History of the Greatest Enemies of the Universe, by George Mann et al.
63. Somebody at the Door, by Raymond Postgate
64. Murder at the Savoy, by Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö (translated by Amy and Ken Knoespel)
65. Marazan, by Nevil Shute
66. Cringeworthy: A Theory of Awkwardness, by Melissa Dahl

April
67. The Infidel and the Professor: David Hume, Adam Smith, and the Friendship That Shaped Modern Thought, by Dennis C. Rasmussen
68. What Editors Do: The Art, Craft, and Business of Book Editing, ed. Peter Ginna
69. Doctor Who: Classic Doctors, New Monsters, Volume 1 (Big Finish audio drama)
70. Return of the Sphinx, by Hugh MacLennan (abandoned)
71. Collecting the World: Hans Sloane and the Origins of the British Museum, by James Delbourgo
72. Dead Lagoon, by Michael Dibdin
73. In the Shadow of Agatha Christie: Classic Crime Fiction by Forgotten Female Writers: 1850-1917, ed. Leslie S. Klinger
74. Child’s Play, by Reginald Hill
75. Spyworld: Inside the Canadian and American Intelligence Establishments, by Mike Frost
76. Keep the Midnight Out, by Alex Gray
77. Doctor Who: Ghosts of India, by Mark Morris
78. Irish Fairy and Folk Tales, ed. W.B. Yeats
79. Doctor Who: Death to the Daleks, by Terrance Dicks
80. The Canterbury Tales, by Geoffrey Chaucer (Serial Reader/ebook)
81. Doctor Who: The Krillitane Storm, by Christopher Cooper
82. Nightblind, by Ragnar Jónasson (translated by Quentin Bates)
83. The Never-Ending Present: The Story of Gord Downie and The Tragically Hip, by Michael Barclay
84. Heart and Brain: Gut Instincts, by The Awkward Yeti
85. Ghost of the Hardy Boys, by Leslie McFarlane
86. Between You & Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen, by Mary Norris
87. The Killing Bay, by Chris Ould
88. Bedlam: London and Its Mad, by Catharine Arnold
89. Kenilworth, by Sir Walter Scott
90. Islander: A Journey Around Our Archipelago, by Patrick Barkham

May
91. The Word Detective: Searching for the Meaning of It All at the Oxford English Dictionary, by John Simpson
92. The Hanging Tree, by Ben Aaronovitch
93. The Breaking Point, by Daphne du Maurier
94. Bitter Water, by Gordon Ferris
95. Devil in a Blue Dress, by Walter Mosley
96. The Silence of the Sea, by Yrsa Sigurðardóttir (translated by Victoria Cribb)
97. The Thick of It: The Missing DoSAC Files, by Armando Iannucci, Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Tony Roche and Ian Martin
98. L’Affaire Saint-Fiacre, by Georges Simenon
99. Grey Seas Under, by Farley Mowat
100. Girl Sleuth: Nancy Drew and the Women Who Created Her, by Melanie Rehak
101. Oblivion, by Arnaldur Indriðason (translated by Victoria Cribb)
—. Murder on the Minnesota, by Conrad Allen — removed from library unread
102. Doctor Who: The First Doctor Adventures, Volume 1 (Big Finish audio drama)
103. The Heaven Tree, by Edith Pargeter
—. McGarr and the Sienese Conspiracy, by Bartholomew Gill — removed from library unread
—. The Death of an Irish Sinner, by Bartholomew Gill — removed from library unread
—. Waiting for Godot, by Samuel Beckett — removed from library unread
—. The Misanthrope and Tartuffe, by Molière — removed from library unread

104. I Was a Spy!, by Marthe McKenna
105. Oceans: A Very Short Introduction, by Dorrik Stow
106. Mystery in the Channel, by Freeman Wills Crofts
107. Truth Dare Kill, by Gordon Ferris
108. The Brothers Karamazov, by Fyodor Dostoevsky (translated by Constance Garnett) (Serial Reader)

June
109. Mythos, by Stephen Fry (unfinished)
110. Henry V, by William Shakespeare
111. Doctor Who and the Giant Robot, by Terrance Dicks
112. John Knox, by Jane Dawson
113. Daughters of the Winter Queen: Four Remarkable Sisters, the Crown of Bohemia, and the Enduring Legacy of Mary, Queen of Scots, by Nancy Goldstone
114. The Diary of a Bookseller, by Shaun Bythell
115. Original Highways: Travelling the Great Rivers of Canada, by Roy MacGregor
116. Lady Cop Makes Trouble, by Amy Stewart
117. Du bon usage des étoiles, by Dominique Fortier
118. Emma, by Jane Austen (reread, Serial Reader)
119. The Prince Who Would Be King: The Life and Death of Henry Stuart, by Sarah Fraser
120. The Happy Brain: The Science of Where Happiness Comes From, and Why, by Dean Burnett (unfinished)
121. Ask a Manager: How to Navigate Clueless Colleagues, Lunch-Stealing Bosses, and the Rest of Your Life at Work, by Alison Green
122. Bloody Scotland, ed. Lin Anderson
123. The Human Factor, by Graham Greene
124. Meltdown: Why Catastrophic Failure Is All Around Us and What We Can Do about It, by Chris Clearfield and András Tilcsik
125. The Death of Stalin, by Fabien Nury and Thierry Robin

July
126. The Complete Father Brown, by G.K. Chesterton (reread)
127. Elizabeth I and Her Circle, by Susan Doran
128. The Green Man, by Kate Sedley (abandoned)
129. Who’s There: The Life and Career of William Hartnell, by Jessica Carney
130. The Debatable Land: The Lost World Between Scotland and England, by Graham Robb (unfinished)
131. The Eyeless, by Lance Parkin
132. Captains Courageous, by Rudyard Kipling (Serial Reader)
133. The Word is Murder, by Anthony Horowitz
134. The Twisted Sword, by Winston Graham
135. Castrovalva, by Christopher H. Bidmead
136. Crimson Snow: Winter Mysteries, ed. Martin Edwards
137. The Man in the Yellow Raft, by C.S. Forester
138. Witness the Dead, by Craig Robertson
139. White Nights, by Ann Cleeves
140. The Story of English in 100 Words, by David Crystal
141. Conan Doyle for the Defense: The True Story of a Sensational British Murder, a Quest for Justice, and the World's Most Famous Detective Writer, by Margalit Fox
142. Postcards from the Boys, by Ringo Starr
143. Unthinkable: An Extraordinary Journey Through the World's Strangest Brains, by Helen Thomson
144. The Commitments, by Roddy Doyle

August
145. The Prisoner of Zenda, by Anthony Hope
146. The Honourable Schoolboy, by John le Carré (reread)
147. Into the Raging Sea: Thirty-Three Mariners, One Megastorm, and the Sinking of El Faro, by Rachel Slade
148. Speak Ill of the Dead, by Mary Jane Maffini (reread)
149. Logopolis, by Christopher H. Bidmead
150. Bats in the Belfry, by E.C.R. Lorac
151. How to Be Champion, by Sarah Millican
152. Ancillary Sword, by Ann Leckie
153. The Quaker, by Liam McIlvanney
154. The Getaway, by Jim Thompson
155. Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself, by Alan Alda (audio, read by Alan Alda)
156. The Book of Dragons, by E. Nesbit (Serial Reader)
157. Brazen: Rebel Ladies Who Rocked the World, by Pénélope Bagieu
158. Bella Poldark, by Winston Graham
159. Cyberman 1.1: Scorpius, by Nicholas Briggs (Big Finish audio drama)
160. Fly Girls: How Five Daring Women Defied All Odds and Made Aviation History, by Keith O’Brien
161. Miss Kopp’s Midnight Confessions, by Amy Stewart
162. Pilote de guerre, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

September
163. Longitude: The True Story of a Lone Genius Who Solved the Greatest Scientific Problem of His Time, by Dava Sobel
164. Cyberman 1.2: Fear, by Nicholas Briggs (Big Finish audio drama)
165. Beneath the Mountain, by Luca D’Andrea (translated by Howard Curtis)
166. Mary Queen of Scots, by Antonia Fraser
167. A Kiss Before Dying, by Ira Levin
168. Cyberman 1.3: Conversion, by Nicholas Briggs (Big Finish audio drama)
169. Cyberman 1.4: Telos, by Nicholas Briggs (Big Finish audio drama)
170. The Silent Stars Go By, by Dan Abnett

October

November

December

3MissWatson
Dec 22, 2017, 4:29am Top

Great to see you, rp, and such a well-organised setup! Happy ROOTing and good luck with the 2 for 1. I failed miserably at this myself.

4majkia
Dec 22, 2017, 6:44am Top

Exterminate those ROOTS!

5connie53
Dec 22, 2017, 12:26pm Top

Good to see you, RP and good luck with ROOTing. Go for 2 for 1. We will be supporting you.

6tess_schoolmarm
Dec 22, 2017, 2:59pm Top

Can't wait to see what you read in 2018!!

7clue
Dec 22, 2017, 9:19pm Top

Good luck with the pool, I see some good ones there.

8rabbitprincess
Dec 22, 2017, 11:09pm Top

>3 MissWatson: I'm really hoping this will curb my grabbier impulses at library book sales, more than anything else!

>4 majkia: Thanks for the encouragement! :)

>5 connie53: Thanks, Connie!

>6 tess_schoolmarm: Thanks, Tess! I can't wait either!

>7 clue: I had a lot of fun picking books for the pool, thanks to the CATs!

9Jackie_K
Dec 23, 2017, 12:34pm Top

Good luck with the 2 for 1! I'd love to get to that point, but I'm not going to hold my breath! I am going to try and be a bit more restrained in the book-acquiring department though (although not till after Christmas - I have £50 specifically to spend in the kobo store, and I intend to use it!).

I love that Dalek photo! I have a photo somewhere of a Dalek randomly crossing an Edinburgh street just off the Royal Mile a few years ago. It was waiting very patiently at the crossing, even though it could have just exterminated the cars that were in its way.

10Familyhistorian
Dec 25, 2017, 1:35am Top

Reading 2 for 1 sounds like a real challenge. Good luck!

11rabbitprincess
Dec 25, 2017, 2:11pm Top

>9 Jackie_K: Hoping to "pay off" one or two more by the end of the year, if I am really productive on my vacation ;) Have fun spending in the Kobo store!

Haha what a good Dalek, being patient with the crossing!

>10 Familyhistorian: Thanks! It is a challenge! Fun to track, though. I do love my stats.

****

I received a few new ROOTs for Christmas. Under the parameters of the 2-for-1 challenge, these don't count against my total books to pay off. They will, however, help me pay down the book debt ;)

Orkneyinga Saga, by Anonymous, translated by Herman Palsson and Paul Edwards
King Hereafter, by Dorothy Dunnett
Who's There?: The Life and Career of William Hartnell, by Jessica Carney
Up Front..., by Victor Spinetti
Les Miserables, by Victor Hugo, translated by Christine Donougher

Merry Christmas to all, and to all some good books!

12sibyx
Edited: Dec 28, 2017, 10:36am Top

Happy ROOTING -- I like your 2 for 1 approach.

Ah, a Dunnett! I am such a fangirl of Lymond!

Forgot to say I love your topper!

13Amberfly
Dec 28, 2017, 3:43pm Top

The Black Arrow is in my Root collection too, and it's been there for quite a while. Maybe this year will be the year. Happy reading!

14floremolla
Dec 29, 2017, 9:15am Top

Hi RP, good to see you here - good luck with your goals! We'll all be watching that acquisition ticker with interest...

15rabbitprincess
Dec 29, 2017, 11:32am Top

>12 sibyx: I'm really enjoying the Lymond series! It's good, meaty historical fiction, like a bowl of stew :)

>13 Amberfly: Thanks! I'm glad there are others who've heard of it. I feel like it's somewhat obscure.

>14 floremolla: Haha I have added another 13 books to my shelves (well, 17 if you count the four Big Finish audio dramas I bought on Boxing Day...), so there will be a nice big number on that ticker!

16avanders
Dec 29, 2017, 3:58pm Top

Hi! Good luck w/ your 2018 Goals!
I'll be stopping by to say Hi when I can :)

17detailmuse
Dec 29, 2017, 4:47pm Top

>1 rabbitprincess: I went into serious "debt" last year from my trip to Hay-on-Wye
I loved being introduced to the town!! Have fun ROOTing!

18leslie.98
Dec 30, 2017, 12:01pm Top

Good luck with your ROOTing in 2018! I love the 2-for-1 idea but as my stats for 2017 are currently 130 read, 114 acquired, I would be a dismal failure at it! Though if I don't include freebies, the # acquired would be much less... I wonder if it would be less than 65. Off to investigate!

Have a happy New Year's eve!

19rabbitprincess
Dec 30, 2017, 6:38pm Top

>16 avanders: Thanks, and same to you! It's always a pleasure to see you :)

>17 detailmuse: It is a great town! I highly recommend making the pilgrimage ;) Have a great reading year!

>18 leslie.98: At this rate I am also a failure at it! Haven't added the latest acquisitions to the ticker, but it will likely be in the 70s to start off the year! :O

20Henrik_Madsen
Dec 31, 2017, 12:17pm Top

EXTERMINATE!! I love Daleks, if you are allowed to use such a word about a race of robots trying to kill everyting in the universe.

21connie53
Jan 1, 3:37am Top



Happy New Year, RP.

22LauraBrook
Jan 1, 1:33pm Top

Happy New Year, rp! I can't wait to see what you EXTERMINATE first this year. And kudos for that 2-for-1 challenge. I know I would fail miserably, though it's something I should probably do.

23FAMeulstee
Jan 1, 3:30pm Top

Happy reading in 2018!

24novawalsh
Jan 1, 3:49pm Top

Lots of fun choices! Good luck with your goals and happy new year!

25karenmarie
Jan 2, 9:15am Top

Love the Dalek!

Good luck with your goals, especially the utterly demoralizing one of having to read 2 books for every new one.

26deep220
Jan 2, 9:42am Top

Happy New Year RP!

27Caramellunacy
Jan 2, 10:48am Top

Ooh! Happy to see Miss Pollifax in there! I remember reading some of those ages ago and being amused by them!

28rabbitprincess
Jan 2, 9:39pm Top

>20 Henrik_Madsen: They are classic villains and so much fun to imitate! IMITATE! IMITATE! :)

>21 connie53: Thanks, Connie, and a happy new year to you as well!

>22 LauraBrook: Thanks, Laura! It is probably a bit of a Sisiphyean goal, but I’m game to try it.

>23 FAMeulstee: Thanks! Hope you have a great reading year as well!

>24 novawalsh: Yes, the TBR pool was fun to put together. Happy new year!

>25 karenmarie: The picture’s a bit blurry because I was so excited. That whole bookshelf beside it is full of Doctor Who and Torchwood books :)

>26 deep220: Thanks! Happy new year!

>27 Caramellunacy: I read a whole bunch of those in middle school, oddly enough. And even more oddly, my cousin was the one who introduced me to them—she doesn’t read mysteries at all these days!

****

As befits my ROOT theme, my first ROOT of 2018 is a Doctor Who book.

The Diary of River Song, Series 1 (Big Finish audio drama)
ROOT 1 of 50
Source: Big Finish
Rating: 4.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/143937116

I love River Song, and these adventures of hers are just the ticket if you love her too. She has a great theme song and is delightfully sassy. Looking forward to Series 2!

29leslie.98
Jan 2, 11:06pm Top

Happy New Year, RP! I hope that you are staying warm during these frigid days...

Enjoy your Mrs. Pollifax books - I love her (though I still think that the early books in the series are the best).

30bragan
Jan 4, 1:55pm Top

>1 rabbitprincess: Here's wishing us both luck with e two-for-one system this year! I'd be very nervous about the idea of Daleks exterminating my books, though. :)

31Familyhistorian
Jan 4, 6:03pm Top

I didn't see there was a Mrs. Pollifax in the mix. Maybe I should have looked on a larger screen so I could see the covers better. Enjoy following Mrs. P's adventures.

>25 karenmarie: Ha, Karen, it is a demoralizing goal, isn't it. Myself, I would call reading 2 for every book brought in the house impossible! But then, for me, it would be.

32rabbitprincess
Jan 5, 7:59pm Top

>29 leslie.98: Thanks for the warm thoughts! And yes, I am looking forward to my re-read of Mrs. Pollifax. :)

>30 bragan: I'm thinking if I can pay down maybe half the book debt by the end of the year, that will be an achievement. The Daleks can go to town exterminating all the bad books ;)

>31 Familyhistorian: It will be fun to see how much of this book comes back to me when I read! As for the 2-for-1, it definitely won't stop me from buying books. The latest temptation is Big Finish, where I can buy a whole bunch of audiobooks in a single click. Have to get into those!

****

Second ROOT of 2018 was awesome.

Revolution in the Head: The Beatles’ Music and the Sixties, by Ian MacDonald
ROOT 2 of 50
Source: Chaptigo
Rating: 5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/130901632

This is a ROOT that I transplanted to my parents' place, because that's where our Beatles-book collection lives. I intended to read it over Christmas but ended up having to bring it home to finish. An excellent book that supplies its own soundtrack :)

33sibyx
Jan 8, 9:21am Top

I'm very tempted by the Beatles book!

34rabbitprincess
Jan 10, 8:05pm Top

>33 sibyx: I hope you like it! It is pretty technical when it comes to describing the music, but there's a really handy glossary at the back.

****

Third ROOT of 2018 was read quickly, for a ROOT. Purchased September 2017, read January 2018. I haven't even paid it off yet on my book ticker!

Quick Curtain, by Alan Melville
ROOT 3 of 50
Source: Blackwell’s, Oxford, England
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/146093188

I enjoyed this Golden Age mystery set in the theatre world. It may tickle your fancy if you too enjoy mysteries of this period, particularly Ngaio Marsh's theatre-based mysteries, or if you like Simon Brett's Charles Paris series.

35karenmarie
Jan 12, 8:42am Top

Hi RB! You're really zooming along. Congrats on three ROOTs read.

36tess_schoolmarm
Jan 12, 4:10pm Top

>34 rabbitprincess: a BB for me!

37rabbitprincess
Edited: Jan 24, 6:40pm Top

>35 karenmarie: It helps that I read ROOTs on the bus and library books at home. Bus reading is pretty productive!

>36 tess_schoolmarm: I hope you like it!

****

I ended up having an unplanned mini-group read of this with MissWatson! And leslie.98, and casvelyn!

The Black Arrow, by Robert Louis Stevenson
ROOT 4 of 50
Source: library book sale
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/112662878

This is a "met my expectations" sort of 3-star rating. It wasn't earth-shattering, but I've had more regrettable reads. I will return it to the library book sale.

38leslie.98
Jan 13, 6:04pm Top

>37 rabbitprincess: I liked The Black Arrow better than you did but we both noticed the language seemed a bit odd for the setting. Looking back, I should probably downgrade my 4* to 3½.

39floremolla
Jan 13, 6:51pm Top

>37 rabbitprincess: >38 leslie.98: according to my LT catalogue I have The Black Arrow on my shelf.... Somewhere.... So now it’s going to be brought forward because I’m intrigued about the language discrepancy:)

40Robertgreaves
Jan 13, 8:00pm Top

Isn't that how a lot of stories start? People resurrecting Daleks for the most benign purposes? Today they exterminate your TBR pile, tomorrow the Earth.

41rabbitprincess
Jan 14, 11:20am Top

>38 leslie.98: I'm glad I'm not the only one who thought the language sounded off.

>39 floremolla: Let's just say that it's not going to replace Treasure Island in my Stevenson affections :)

>40 Robertgreaves: So true!

42rabbitprincess
Jan 14, 5:34pm Top

Bought myself a book on Friday and have already read it! And while it was another book added to my TBR debt, reading it "paid off" a book, so the effect of the new book has been neutralized ;)

Heart and Brain: Body Language, by The Awkward Yeti
ROOT 5 of 50
Source: Chaptigo
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/150152852

I enjoy this cute webcomic. Reading this takes maybe half an hour, and it's perfect for providing a quick shot of cheerfulness.

43MissWatson
Jan 21, 5:30am Top

>37 rabbitprincess: I saw a mystery novel by RLS at the charity shop yesterday: The wrecker, in translation, and was curious if it is worth tracking down the original. Have you ever heard of it?

44tess_schoolmarm
Jan 21, 7:31am Top

>42 rabbitprincess: lol neutralized

>43 MissWatson: Can't tell you anything about The Wrecker except that it's free for ereaders from Amazon and Project Gutenberg; in English, anyway. I came across it when I read Treasure Island last year and was talking to a friend about it. She said that The Wrecker was a joint project between Stevenson and his son-in-law, Lord Osbourne and that it was considered experimental for its day. It's on my TBR way down there, as I found Treasure Island just ho-hum.

45rabbitprincess
Jan 21, 8:55am Top

>43 MissWatson: It rings a very faint bell, but I haven't read it. I probably would pick it up if I came across it, because that's a great title.

>44 tess_schoolmarm: Hm, Gutenberg you say! I'd probably get what I paid for if I got it from there :) Didn't know RLS had a Lord for a son-in-law!

46tess_schoolmarm
Jan 21, 9:14am Top

>45 rabbitprincess: I could be wrong about the relationship; it's been awhile!

47tess_schoolmarm
Jan 21, 12:20pm Top

>45 rabbitprincess: Got to checking and I was wrong! Osbourne was the stepson of Stevenson and NOT a Lord! I have them confused with others.

48rabbitprincess
Jan 21, 2:50pm Top

>47 tess_schoolmarm: The name Osbourne does sound pretty lordly though :) Thanks for checking on that for me!

****

Curse of the Narrows: The Halifax Explosion 1917, by Laura M. MacDonald
ROOT 6 of 50
Source: Bookmark, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/141574612

Recommended if you've heard about the Halifax Explosion and want someplace to start reading about it. This is a comprehensive overview and is particularly illuminating when it discusses the issues surrounding pilotage in the harbour and the confusion that can be caused by different types of ships and language barriers among crews and pilots.

49MissWatson
Jan 22, 4:07am Top

>44 tess_schoolmarm: Thanks Tess, and yay for Gutenberg. If only I could download time for reading as well!

50Jackie_K
Jan 22, 6:27am Top

Hi rp, I just bought a (cheap!) book and thought of you, thought you might like to see if it's on offer in CDN$ as well! (it seems to be on offer currently in both the kobo store and kindle - I heard about it via bookbub). https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/Book/who-goes-there-50th-anniversary-edition-1

51rabbitprincess
Jan 22, 6:03pm Top

>49 MissWatson: That would be handy!

>50 Jackie_K: Haha! Thanks for thinking of me! Book Depo has a paper version, which is what I would buy (I don't pay money for ebooks). I'll have to add it and his other book to my wishlist.

52Familyhistorian
Jan 23, 8:22pm Top

>48 rabbitprincess: I remember liking Curse of the Narrows: The Halifax Disaster of 1917 when I read it. That is a very timely read as the 100 year anniversary was just last December.

53rabbitprincess
Jan 24, 7:29pm Top

>52 Familyhistorian: It is a good book, very thorough. I missed the Halifax maritime museum's exhibit of the 100th anniversary of the explosion -- we were there in May and the exhibit didn't open until June :(

****

I'm counting this ROOT in my 2-for-1 ticker because, although Goodreads says I read this book already, I read it from the library and not from this copy ;) I also read it pre-Goodreads so it may as well be a first-time read for all I remember.

Nemesis, by Agatha Christie
ROOT 7 of 50
Source: parents
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/139917335

I'm getting more into the Marples nowadays -- must be the knitting she does! This book is not bad, but there are some cringeworthy sentiments about modern girls that really do not need to be repeated several times.

54Familyhistorian
Jan 25, 12:46am Top

>53 rabbitprincess: I didn't realize that the Halifax Maritime Museum had an exhibit for the 100th anniversary. I was there in October so should have checked it out.

55Lisa805
Jan 27, 11:31pm Top

>2 rabbitprincess: You are off to a great start! Wishing you happy reading during February.

56rabbitprincess
Jan 31, 9:29pm Top

>54 Familyhistorian: I hope there will be an exhibit catalogue or programme that I can buy!

>55 Lisa805: Thanks, Lisa, and the same to you!

****

January recap: 7 ROOTS pulled (YTD: 7)

The Diary of River Song, Series 1 (Big Finish audio drama)
Revolution in the Head: The Beatles’ Music and the Sixties, by Ian MacDonald
Quick Curtain, by Alan Melville
*The Black Arrow, by Robert Louis Stevenson
Heart and Brain: Body Language, by The Awkward Yeti
*Curse of the Narrows: The Halifax Explosion 1917, by Laura M. MacDonald
*Nemesis, by Agatha Christie

ROOT of the month: Revolution in the Head

I did pretty well with ROOTS for the first half of the month, and then library books caught up to me. I’m pleased with my (sort of) adherence to the Pool, though.

Books from the Pool:
- Completed this month: 3
- In progress: 1
- On deck: 2

The in-progress Pool book is Chretien de Troyes’ Arthurian Romances, which is taking a while. I’ll have to read some smaller ROOTS around it.

57rabbitprincess
Feb 3, 2:15pm Top

I enjoyed this audiobook, but I'm declaring it finished after reading 9 of 13 discs.

At Home: A Short History of Private Life, by Bill Bryson
ROOT 8 of 50
Source: ripped from library
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/86455909

I got a lot out of this book. It's good for dipping into and out of as the mood strikes, and I'd like to re-read it in print sometime.

58rabbitprincess
Edited: Feb 4, 11:35am Top

While this is a reread and therefore doesn't count in my 2-for-1 challenge, it *is* a Going Through the Stacks book, so yay!

Going Through the Stacks book #68 was America: The Book, which I ended up deciding to give away without rereading.

Arthurian Romances, by Chrétien de Troyes
ROOT 9 of 50
Going Through the Stacks #69
Source: bought for school
Rating: 2/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/70475608

I know this is a medieval work and I shouldn't judge it by modern standards, but dang, is the storytelling style weird. I prefer Roger Lancelyn Green's retellings or other, more modern renderings.

59rabbitprincess
Feb 9, 7:22pm Top

I finished five books this week, which is some kind of record. Two of them are ROOTS.

Kipling: A Selection of His Stories and Poems Volume 1, by Rudyard Kipling
ROOT 10 of 50
Source: EVM
Rating: 2/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/94417686

I decided to call it quits on this one after finishing Kim. Kim just kind of stopped rather than ending. The Jungle Book stories that were set in the jungle were all right, but the others I didn't care for as much.

Campbell’s Kingdom, by Hammond Innes
ROOT 11 of 50
Source: Rockcliffe Park book sale
Rating: 2.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/work/390712/reviews/123120529

This was an impulse purchase that didn't pan out like I'd hoped, but at least it's read now and can be passed along to another reader.

60sibyx
Feb 9, 9:38pm Top

You've been busy!

I read a lot of Kipling at one time -- besides Kim I feel there were one or two other things I liked, but can't think now what they were!

61rabbitprincess
Edited: Feb 11, 11:43am Top

>60 sibyx: Indeed! I ended up finishing NINE books over the course of the week (three of them yesterday). This is extreme even for me.

Of the Kipling stories I read in this collection, I think my favourite was "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi". But I kept picturing him as a meerkat rather than as a mongoose! Must have been the influence of the "Spy in the Wild" documentary :)

****

Two more ROOTs to report. One is a long-standing ROOT I've been reading since last April, and the other is an audio drama.

Have Not Been the Same: The CanRock Renaissance 1985-1995, by Michael Barclay, Ian A.D. Jack, and Jason Schneider
ROOT 12 of 50
Source: Christmas gift
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/81148830

I've been reading this for a while, because it's a big book and also because I was looking up songs on YouTube after each chapter. Worth reading if you're interested in the Canadian music scene.

The Diary of River Song, Series 2 (Big Finish audio drama)
ROOT 13 of 50
Source: Big Finish
Rating: 4.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/143937138

Another excellent collection by Big Finish. In Series 2, River encounters the Sixth and Seventh Doctors. Six in particular seems to get on well with her!

62Jackie_K
Feb 11, 2:19pm Top

>61 rabbitprincess: Wow, nine in one week? Very impessive, I've never yet managed that in a month! My February reading is mainly continuing several books that were already on the go - I'm at around 30% read for both of my Feb challenge books, and at various other %s for others. I think I'm going to have another glut of books all finishing around the same time, but not for a couple of weeks.

63Lisa805
Edited: Feb 21, 9:38am Top

Happy ThingAversary today, Rabbitprincess. Enjoy envisioning the books you might like to buy at some point. In the meantime, enjoy some virtual book cupcakes.

64MissWatson
Feb 21, 10:04am Top

Happy thingaversary indeed. Those cupcakes look too good to eat!

65enemyanniemae
Feb 21, 10:53am Top

great reading and great cupcakes! You've accomplished a lot.

66leslie.98
Feb 21, 11:59am Top

Happy thingaversary! Love the cupcakes.

67floremolla
Feb 21, 1:02pm Top

Happy Thingaversary, RP! (mmm, cake...) :)

68Jackie_K
Feb 21, 2:18pm Top

Happy thingaversary from me too. Those cakes look fabulous, it would (almost) be a crime to eat them!

69rabbitprincess
Feb 21, 6:03pm Top

>62 Jackie_K: Thanks! It's funny how books can be finished in waves sometimes. I hope your big Rebecca West book is going better.

>63 Lisa805: YUM! Those look delicious! Thank you for the Thingaversary wishes!

>64 MissWatson: Thanks! And I agree, it would be very difficult to eat those in person. Such craftsmanship!

>65 enemyanniemae: Thanks! I have to credit bus rides and not doing housework (and having a boyfriend who cooks).

>66 leslie.98: Thanks, Leslie! :)

>67 floremolla: Thanks! Cake is always welcome.

>68 Jackie_K: Thanks, Jackie! Haha maybe the book cupcakes are supposed to be of crime books!

****

After some debate as to whether I should maintain a rolling total for my 2-for-1 TBR (i.e., add all my 2018 purchases to the ticker as they're made) or keep the total to the number that was there on January 1, I opted for the January 1 total. Slightly less demoralizing ;)

The good news is that I paid off another purchase from 2017 and will be reviewing it here shortly.

70Robertgreaves
Feb 21, 6:23pm Top

A belated Happy Thingaversary, rabbitprincess

71Lisa805
Feb 21, 6:59pm Top

Thought I should mention, that I didn't make those cupcakes. Wish I had that level of decorating patience. They sure are cute though.

72rabbitprincess
Feb 22, 8:10pm Top

>70 Robertgreaves: Thanks, Robert! :)

>71 Lisa805: Me neither! It's all I can do to put icing on them. ;)

****

After a very long stretch of library books, I finally have a ROOT to report.

Malice Aforethought, by Francis Iles
ROOT 14 of 50
Source: Adelphi Books, Portsmouth, England
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/121727915

This is a classic crime novel and worth the hype for me. A whydunnit/howdunnit that is great from start to finish.

73leslie.98
Feb 22, 8:24pm Top

>72 rabbitprincess: LOL, I too have been swamped with library books recently :) So glad that you enjoyed Malice Aforethought as much as I did. Have you seen the 2005 BBC adaptation with Ben Miller? It was pretty good though the book was better...

74BookDoc16
Feb 23, 7:49pm Top

42 books already??? I'm only up to 11! You must read much faster (or for more hours/day) than I do! I'm very impressed. And I LOVE the idea of reading 2 ROOTs for every 1 new addition. I'll try to implement that for the rest of the year. Good reading!

75BookDoc16
Feb 23, 7:52pm Top

I read _The Town that Died_ by Michael Bird years ago, and own a 1st US edition. Have you read it also? If so, how does it compare to _Curse of the Narrows_?

76connie53
Feb 24, 4:28am Top

Happy belated Thingaversary, RP!

77rabbitprincess
Feb 24, 11:08am Top

>73 leslie.98: I haven't seen the TV adaptation yet. Will have to keep an eye out. I do agree the book is probably better, especially because of the waspish narration ;)

>74 BookDoc16: I do read fairly quickly and have lots of pockets in the day into which I can squeeze some reading. :) Good luck with the 2-for-1 TBR!

>75 BookDoc16: I have not read The Town that Died but will have to check it out! In addition to Curse of the Narrows I've read Shattered City, by Janet F. Kitz, which focuses more on the survivors and has the advantage of being written earlier in time, when more of the survivors were still alive. I tried reading Aftershock: The Halifax Explosion and the Persecution of Pilot Francis Mackey, by Janet Maybee, which has a good premise but which I found annoyingly written. In fiction I've read the great Barometer Rising, by Hugh MacLennan, which takes place in the days leading up to, during, and immediately following the explosion.

My next Halifax Explosion books will likely be the two my boyfriend's dad got for Christmas: The Great Halifax Explosion, by John U. Bacon (which we gave him); and The Halifax Explosion: Canada's Worst Disaster, by Ken Cuthbertson (which my BF's sister and her fiancé gave him).

>76 connie53: Thanks, Connie! I bought five books to celebrate yesterday :)

78rabbitprincess
Feb 27, 9:29pm Top

I am unlikely to finish any more ROOTs before February ends, so I'll do the monthly recap.

February recap: 7 ROOTS pulled (YTD: 14)

At Home: A Short History of Private Life, by Bill Bryson (audio, read by Bill Bryson)
*Arthurian Romances, by Chrétien de Troyes (reread)
Campbell’s Kingdom, by Hammond Innes
Kipling: A Selection of His Stories and Poems Volume 1, by Rudyard Kipling
Have Not Been the Same: The CanRock Renaissance 1985-1995, by Michael Barclay, Ian A.D. Jack, and Jason Schneider
The Diary of River Song, Series 2 (Big Finish audio drama)
*Malice Aforethought, by Francis Iles

ROOT of the month: The Diary of River Song, Series 2

Three of these ROOTs had been growing roots, especially Have Not Been the Same, so I am pleased with this month's progress.

Books from the Pool:
- Completed this month: 2
- In progress: 3
- On deck: 1

79detailmuse
Feb 28, 9:23am Top

>78 rabbitprincess: these ROOTs had been growing roots
haha! Great ROOT progress and WOW 44 books total read already this year?! Lots of room for acquisitions :))

80floremolla
Feb 28, 10:25am Top

Great work, RP! I was also chuckling at the ROOTs growing roots - I know that scenario only too well ;)

81karenmarie
Mar 2, 6:12am Top

Hi RP!

I'm slowly trying to get caught up on threads, and you're really moving along this year. Congratulations.

82rabbitprincess
Mar 4, 4:53pm Top

>79 detailmuse: Thanks! Not sure how much room I have for acquisitions, but it *is* about time for me to do my twice-yearly pruning of the shelves.

>80 floremolla: Thanks! I suspect that is a very relatable scenario ;)

>81 karenmarie: Thanks for stopping by! Yes, I am quite surprised by my progress this year.

****

We're going to Scotland in September, so it makes sense for me to finally read this book, which I bought on our previous trip to Scotland (five years ago).

A History of Ancient Britain, by Neil Oliver
ROOT 15 of 50
Source: National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/97985153

I liked the subject matter and the writing, but there was something a little "off" about it. The best way to describe it is that it feels like there are commercial breaks in there and the book recaps information that you might not have had if you were joining the book "in progress", so to speak. But I wouldn't dissuade anyone from reading it if they were interested.

83Familyhistorian
Mar 5, 9:11pm Top

I have A History of Ancient Britain on the shelves, unread. I did read his A History of Scotland: Look Behind the Mist and Myth of Scottish History. I don't remember the commercial break affect but maybe I wouldn't have noticed it having watched so many shows with Neil Oliver as the commentator. When I read his Scotland history book, I could hear his voice in it in certain passages.

84floremolla
Mar 6, 4:18am Top

>82 rabbitprincess: >83 Familyhistorian: for Scots Neil Oliver is a 'take him or leave him' kind of guy and I'm in the latter category. Since he emerged swinging his shiny locks, in a programme called Coast, I think he's become very 'tv programme orientated' to the point of ubiquity on the box - hence I guess the book was probably written with tv in mind or started as tv script and turned into a book - so well spotted, RP!

I might not like his style but at least he is a bona fide historian - I get much more peeved with celebrity presenters of history or natural history programmes.

85rabbitprincess
Mar 6, 5:51pm Top

>83 Familyhistorian: My mum found that A History of Scotland worked best when she alternated between the book and the TV show; it helped her retain the information she was getting. And yes, A History of Ancient Britain does sound like him :)

>84 floremolla: Yes, he definitely knows his stuff! I myself would not object to a plethora of Neil programs, but I can definitely see where you'd want to have a different face every so often ;) The book probably was developed using the scripts as its basis. On the plus side, the construction does make it good for reading in spurts rather than straight through.

86rabbitprincess
Mar 8, 7:48pm Top

I seem to be reading all the huge ROOTs these days. This mass market paperback clocked in at 632 pages!

Blood on the Tongue, by Stephen Booth
ROOT 16 of 50
Source: Bearly Used Books, Parry Sound, ON
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/139917030

This was my first foray into the Cooper and Fry series, even though it's book 3, because I was interested in the WW2 plane crash plotline. I liked the story pretty well and would pick up another if the plot piqued my interest.

87floremolla
Mar 9, 4:00am Top

>86 rabbitprincess: there seems to be an appetite among the reading public for this kind of book to be of a length I would associate with Victorian authors like George Elliot or Charles Dickens, but they tend to be very readable and I find I can get through them far more quickly than the aforementioned writers' work!

88LauraBrook
Mar 11, 12:52pm Top

>85 rabbitprincess: Surprisingly (to me, at least), I had to look up who Neil Oliver is. Never seen him before! I'll track down a show or book of his, and will keep the take him or leave him thing in mind, as >84 floremolla: said.

89rabbitprincess
Mar 11, 5:38pm Top

>87 floremolla: Yes, it did move quite briskly! And yet I think if I had a trade paperback of that size, it would have seemed that much more difficult. (I think my copy of An Officer and a Spy was a trade paperback of about that page count and I found it really hard to get through.) It helped too that I bought the book used and the spine had already been cracked!

>88 LauraBrook: A History of Scotland is a good one, and the show "Coast" is good because it's multiple presenters, with Neil being the overall host. I also love the archaeology show he did with Tony Pollard called "Two Men in a Trench", but that was from a while ago and might not be easy to find. (The companion books might be easier to get a hold of.)

****

My latest bus book became an at-home book so that I could finish it over the weekend and start the week fresh.

Arcadian Adventures with the Idle Rich, by Stephen Leacock
ROOT 17 of 50
Source: a church book sale
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/130510820

I was tasked to review this on the Go Review That Book! group, and it was a good choice. Surprisingly light and funny. Ranks up there with Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town.

90deep220
Mar 12, 11:45am Top

WOW what a start! great job.

Hangs my head in shame.

91rabbitprincess
Mar 13, 8:31pm Top

>90 deep220: No need for shame! As long as you're reading and enjoying what you are reading, that's the main thing :)

****

Woo hoo, two ROOTs in a row!

Bertie and the Seven Bodies, by Peter Lovesey
ROOT 18 of 50
Source: Book Bazaar
Rating: 2.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/130511418

This is a mystery in which Albert Edward, Prince of Wales, turns detective. I enjoyed the first book in the series, but not this one. Would have preferred his wife, Princess Alexandra, in the role of sleuth.

92rabbitprincess
Mar 18, 10:36am Top

I'm being deluged with library books -- had four holds come in on Monday and another four on Wednesday -- so this weekend I decided to sneak in a little short ROOT.

Cause Célèbre, by Terence Rattigan
ROOT 19 of 50
Source: BMV
Rating: 2/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/129352737

I bought this because David Morrissey stars in the TV adaptation as the young lover, and Helen Mirren plays the wife and David Suchet the husband who gets murdered. The play is rather messily written; I had a hard time following the shifts in time and place, and think the TV adaptation would have been better. That said, I always appreciate nudges to read more plays, and the real-life case that inspired it is interesting.

93detailmuse
Mar 18, 2:59pm Top

>92 rabbitprincess: I always appreciate nudges to read more plays
I’ve read only a few but you remind me I liked doing so, and I liked comparing written to performed. I read A Raisin in the Sun before I saw the film, and wondered how could Sidney Poitier possibly make the character sympathetic. But he did -- much more desperate than opportunist.

Good luck with the library stack!

94rabbitprincess
Mar 20, 9:13pm Top

>93 detailmuse: It is fun to compare the text with an adaptation. With Shakespeare, I find I like to watch an adaptation first, then read the play, so that I have someone to picture for each character. And it's interesting to see what they leave out and what lines get reassigned to other characters.

You remind me that I should read A Raisin in the Sun sometime!

****

A lot of my audiobooks are acquired because of their narrator. This one is no exception.

The End of the Affair, by Graham Greene (audio, read by Colin Firth)
ROOT 20 of 50
Source: compact disc
Rating: 4/5 (3 for the story + 1 extra for Colin Firth)
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/108418428

I did end up liking this story quite a bit, although I do think that is attributable in no small part to Colin Firth's narration. This production was part of the A-list series on Audible, where actors would help select the books that were part of the series. Having an audiobook narrator who really likes the work he's reading certainly helps make it appealing :)

95avanders
Mar 22, 11:49am Top

Hello!! Just dropping by. It has just been TOO long. But I'm happy to see you're doing so well with your ROOTing! Life for me has been a bit crazy these past couple months, but maybe in the couple months to come, it'll calm down ;)

I'm excited about the LT/Litsy "merger"... I hope it goes smoothly! :) :) :)

96rabbitprincess
Mar 22, 6:39pm Top

>95 avanders: Always great to see you! :D

I'm excited about LT's acquisition of Litsy, too. Better book data in Litsy would be AWESOME. I twitch a bit whenever someone posts about, say, Rebecca, and the author is given as "Du Maurier, Dame Daphne" :P

97Lisa805
Mar 26, 3:50pm Top

>94 rabbitprincess: Funny how Colin Firth seems to make everything nicer. 😉

98rabbitprincess
Mar 27, 6:55pm Top

>97 Lisa805: He sure does! Thanks for finding me on Goodreads, by the way :D

****

I was out last night attending a talk by Steven Pinker in honour of his latest book, Enlightenment Now. It was nice enough to have a picnic supper outside while I waited for the doors to open, so I finished off another ROOT.

Murder at the Savoy, by Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö (translated by Amy and Ken Knoespel)
ROOT 21 of 50
Source: Chaptigo
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/77946892

Still working my way through this series. I have the feeling that I will give most them away when I'm finished. The Laughing Policeman is still the best for me.

99rabbitprincess
Mar 28, 8:03pm Top

Polished off another ROOT today. When I started reading it, I couldn't remember why I'd put it on the on-deck pile. Then I got to the part set in the Isles of Scilly -- I'd somehow made that connection after reading Life of a Scilly Sergeant from the library. My reading does sometimes follow weird themes like that...

Marazan, by Nevil Shute
ROOT 22 of 50
Source: the Great Glebe Garage Sale (2016)
Rating: 4/5
Review: http://www.librarything.com/review/130511058

This book has Cornwall, early airplanes, and smuggling. In other words, it ticks a lot of boxes and I enjoyed it a great deal. Just what I needed.

100MissWatson
Mar 29, 3:37am Top

>99 rabbitprincess: Yes, but it is such a great journey of discovery to follow weird themes!

101detailmuse
Mar 29, 12:02pm Top

>98 rabbitprincess: It was nice enough to have a picnic supper outside
Sounds perfect! I hope we will eventually see spring here...

How was Pinker's talk? I've been interested in his linguistics books and have one in my TBRs.

102detailmuse
Mar 29, 12:09pm Top

>99 rabbitprincess: There used to be an LT group -- a challenge to read a sequence of books where each led by some connection to the next. Still sounds like a fun idea!

103rabbitprincess
Mar 30, 8:32pm Top

>100 MissWatson: Indeed! :)

>101 detailmuse: I had to bundle up, but it was actually warm in the sun. Spring will come eventually. The talk was a good distillation of the themes in his book. There was also an interview with a CBC journalist and some audience q's. I liked Pinker's flashes of humour. He has them in his books as well; anyone who can quote Calvin and Hobbes well is a winner in my books!

>102 detailmuse: That would be an interesting challenge!

****

Our Easter dinner is tomorrow, and I'm unlikely to finish any ROOTs by the end of the month, so here's the March recap.

March recap: 8 ROOTS pulled (YTD: 22)

*A History of Ancient Britain, by Neil Oliver
Blood on the Tongue, by Stephen Booth
Arcadian Adventures with the Idle Rich, by Stephen Leacock
*Bertie and the Seven Bodies, by Peter Lovesey
*Cause Célèbre, by Terence Rattigan
*The End of the Affair, by Graham Greene (audio, read by Colin Firth)
*Murder at the Savoy, by Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö (translated by Amy and Ken Knoespel)
Marazan, by Nevil Shute

ROOT of the month: Arcadian Adventures of the Idle Rich

Books from the Pool:
- Completed this month: 5 (woot!)
- In progress: 2
- On deck: 1

Speaking of the Pool, here's how it's looking at the end of Q1:



I'm about 1/3 through the Pool and we're 1/4 of the way through the year, so not bad. I'll have to really work to get all those historical novels read.

104detailmuse
Mar 31, 10:52am Top

>103 rabbitprincess: anyone who can quote Calvin and Hobbes well is a winner in my books!
Agree! Looking forward to his book and his humor.

Excellent rooting and pooling, Happy Easter!

105karenmarie
Mar 31, 1:49pm Top

Hi RP and happy Easter to you.

>94 rabbitprincess:, >97 Lisa805: Oh yes. I've never heard him read an audiobook, but everything I've seen with him has been tip-top, sexy man that he is.

106rabbitprincess
Apr 3, 1:50pm Top

>104 detailmuse: Hope you like it!

>105 karenmarie: This is the only audiobook I can find of his. I don't know whether he's done any more. If he hasn't, he should!

****

Starting off the month with an extra-long weekend (this is day 5 of my weekend) is a good way to rack up some totals. I've finished five books so far this month, and two of them are ROOTs.

Doctor Who: Classic Doctors, New Monsters, Vol. 1 (Big Finish audio drama)
ROOT 23 of 50
Source: Big Finish
Rating: 4.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/144171299

Another excellent box set from Big Finish. The only reason I haven't yet ranked a box set as a 5 is that there's always one story that's more of a 4. But the set as a whole is very well done.

Return of the Sphinx, by Hugh MacLennan
ROOT 24 of 50
Source: Friends of Library and Archives Canada book sale
Rating: 1.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/70474076

I can forgive boring mouthpiece-style fiction, but I cannot forgive boring mouthpiece-style fiction that also contains cringeworthy scenarios for female characters. The Watch That Ends the Night is still one of my favourite books of all time, but this book is not recommended.

107connie53
Apr 10, 2:37am Top

Hi RP, I see you have been reading a lot and almost on the half way point! Yeah!!

108rabbitprincess
Apr 10, 6:49pm Top

>107 connie53: Thanks for stopping by, Connie! I hit the halfway point on Sunday but am only just now posting about it :)

****

Child’s Play, by Reginald Hill (Dalziel and Pascoe #9)
ROOT 25 of 50
Source: library book sale
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/129465350

I read this for an April-themed random challenge at the Category Challenge group; it was added to my library in April 2016. It was pretty straightforward as far as Dalziel and Pascoe go. Made me miss Warren Clarke :(

109connie53
Apr 11, 2:02am Top

Ha! Congrats on reaching the half way point for real!

110MissWatson
Apr 11, 3:49am Top

Congrats on hitting the halfway point!

111rabbitprincess
Apr 12, 8:06pm Top

>109 connie53: >110 MissWatson: Thank you both!

****

I am now zipping past the halfway point thanks to finishing up three ROOTs in relatively short order.

Irish Fairy and Folk Tales, ed. W.B. Yeats
ROOT 26 of 50
Source: Hodges Figgis, Dublin, Ireland
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/108932669

I originally started reading this back in 2015, but put it down because it was becoming a slog. Picked it up again recently and was able to finish it (I'd left a Post-it note to mark where I stopped reading). It was pretty good and definitely shows the value of allowing a book to settle and wait for the right time :)

Doctor Who: Death to the Daleks, by Terrance Dicks
ROOT 27 of 50
Source: Book Bazaar
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/119684082

A very quick read; I started this on the bus this morning and was finished by the time I got home from work! A novelization of the Third Doctor story of the same name.

The Canterbury Tales, by Geoffrey Chaucer
ROOT 28 of 50
Source: Serial Reader/ebook
Rating: 2.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/151233057

I've decided to start counting Serial Reader reads as ROOTs, mainly because I am also using it to read The Brothers Karamazov and I want that to count for SOMETHING. Anyway, The Canterbury Tales was a mixed bag. The funny stuff was really funny, but there was a lot of dull moralizing and decidedly backwards-by-21st-century-standards attitudes toward women. Oh well, at least I've read it.

112detailmuse
Apr 15, 9:48am Top

>111 rabbitprincess: I really "want to have read" The Caterbury Tales! Might look into Serial Reader...

113rabbitprincess
Apr 29, 10:25am Top

>112 detailmuse: I highly recommend it! It's a good way to chip away at some of the bigger classics. I usually have two serials going at any given time.

****

Haven't been here in a while because I had so many library books to get through! But what else is new?

This book has inspired another round of library-book requesting...

Kenilworth, by Sir Walter Scott
ROOT 29 of 50
Source: Strand Books, NYC
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/114853327

This Scott novel is set at the court of Elizabeth I, which might not be the first setting you think of when you think of a Scott novel. The pageantry of the Elizabethan court is well researched, but it might not be entirely historically accurate. Now to find more books about the period to get a better picture of it; I'm not actually that well versed in it!

114leslie.98
Apr 29, 5:31pm Top

>111 rabbitprincess: What you say about Canterbury Tales, the dull moralizing and the chauvinistic attitudes, was exactly how I felt about large parts of Thomas More's Utopia. I guess that not as much changed in ~150 years as I would have expected!

115floremolla
Apr 30, 6:50am Top

>113 rabbitprincess: Well done with Kennilworth! We inherited a whole set of Scott's novels from my MIL and I haven't tackled a single one, they seem so daunting - a slog-in-waiting! I might start with this one since you've made it sound interesting.

116rabbitprincess
Apr 30, 6:03pm Top

>114 leslie.98: Haha you managed to get through more of Utopia than I did! I think I lasted two pages. At least Canterbury Tales had bums and fart jokes ;)

>115 floremolla: Ooo a matching set? With fancy bindings? The library at Cardiff Castle had two sets of "the Waverley novels" and they looked beautiful. I hope you like Kenilworth (and if you don't, pretend my review doesn't exist :D).

****

Not going to finish any more ROOTs this month, so here's the April recap.

April recap: 7 ROOTs pulled (YTD: 29)

Doctor Who: Classic Doctors, New Monsters, Volume 1 (Big Finish audio drama)
*Return of the Sphinx, by Hugh MacLennan (abandoned)
Child’s Play, by Reginald Hill
Irish Fairy and Folk Tales, ed. W.B. Yeats
Doctor Who: Death to the Daleks, by Terrance Dicks
The Canterbury Tales, by Geoffrey Chaucer (Serial Reader/ebook)
*Kenilworth, by Sir Walter Scott

ROOT of the month: Classic Doctors, New Monsters, Vol. 1

Books from the Pool:

Completed this month: 2
In progress: 2
On deck: 3

In May I hope to make more progress on the Father Brown collection (a Pool read that is taking a long time because it’s a bedside book). I'll be visiting my parents, too, and there may be some book buying...

117Lisa805
Edited: May 1, 4:39pm Top

Congratulations on whizzing past your midway point goal two months ahead of schedule!

118rabbitprincess
May 5, 9:00am Top

>117 Lisa805: Thanks, Lisa!

****

The first week of May features one ROOT read.

The Hanging Tree, by Ben Aaronovitch
ROOT 30 of 50
Source: Chaptigo
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/137975486

After slogging through Kenilworth, I figured it was time for a lighter book! This installment of the Peter Grant series fit the bill nicely.

119karenmarie
May 9, 1:18pm Top

Hi RP!

You're way ahead of the game at 30 of 50! Congrats.

I do that too - read something heavy or intense and then switch to a mystery or light fiction.

120rabbitprincess
May 10, 9:10pm Top

>119 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen! Lighter books are even more refreshing after a heavy one, I find!

****

Speaking of a light read, here's one I plowed through last night.

The Thick of It: The Missing DoSAC Files, by Armando Iannucci, Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Tony Roche and Ian Martin
ROOT 31 of 50
Source: Book Depository
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/148650809

This is a supplement to the TV series "The Thick of It" and as such will likely not make sense (or will at the very least be less fun) if you haven't seen or read much about the show. I enjoyed it, although I did pick a few editorial nits. Nothing was out of character, though, and the variety of things in Malcolm's files kept me reliably entertained for a couple of hours.

121rabbitprincess
May 11, 9:49pm Top

Woo hoo, halfway to my goal of two French books for the year!

L’Affaire Saint-Fiacre, by Georges Simenon
ROOT 32 of 50
Source: church book sale
Rating: 2.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/129905821

This is my least favourite Maigret so far, mainly because I had a hard time differentiating between the various male characters, all of whom talked the same and few of whom were given dialogue tags.

122connie53
Edited: May 14, 6:01am Top

>121 rabbitprincess: Good for you! Maybe I should include reading a few books in English too. But that's something for next year or I could start now. I will give that challenge a thought in the next few days.

123rabbitprincess
Edited: May 16, 8:01pm Top

>122 connie53: Good idea! Maybe you could read Linwood Barclay's Promise Falls trilogy if it turns out they won't be translated. Did you contact the publisher about that? I don't think it's fair that you should be deprived of any of his books!

(and did you see there's a new one coming out in ENG soon: A Noise Downstairs?)

****

I was on vacation for the past few days and managed to complete only one book. I did, however, succeed in buying books at a used bookstore and bringing back my Bouchercon haul from October. :D

Grey Seas Under, by Farley Mowat
ROOT 33 of 50
Source: Book Bazaar
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/138119351

I really enjoyed this book. It was delightfully boaty in the best possible way. Ticked all the boxes for me.

124connie53
May 19, 3:00am Top

>123 rabbitprincess: I did get the first three books by Barclay in English! My brother found them for me. So that's a start. And no, I did not contact the publisher yet and I did not know about the new book. Very good news.

125rabbitprincess
May 19, 1:14pm Top

>124 connie53: Hurray! I'm glad you got those books. Enjoy!

****

The end of the Erlendur era for me; this was the last unread one on my shelves.

Oblivion, by Arnaldur Indriðason (translated by Victoria Cribb)
ROOT 34 of 50
Source: Chaptigo
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/123104288

I liked this one because of the younger (serious, but less gloomy) Erlendur and because the presence of the US military base brings to mind Indriðason's current series, set in WW2 Reykjavík.

126rabbitprincess
May 21, 11:16am Top

Counting Murder on the Minnesota, by Conrad Allen, as ROOT 35 of 50, because I am giving it away unread. I've gone off this series :-/

The book will not count in my reading totals, but it will count toward my 2-for-1 TBR.

127Lisa805
May 21, 10:39pm Top

>126 rabbitprincess: Good for you! It is difficult to make that decision and not complete a series. That happens sometimes though, as reading tastes change, etc.

128rabbitprincess
May 26, 11:53am Top

>127 Lisa805: Thanks, Lisa! I'm dangerously close to capacity with regard to my shelving, too, so if new books come in and I have to play shelf Tetris to get them all in, some of the older, unread ones that I'll never read might have to go.

****

I've done a bit more shelf cleaning and removed four more unread books from my shelves:

McGarr and the Sienese Conspiracy, by Bartholomew Gill
The Death of an Irish Sinner, by Bartholomew Gill
Waiting for Godot, by Samuel Beckett
The Misanthrope and Tartuffe, by Molière

These represent ROOTs 36, 37, 38, and 39 of 50.

I have two more ROOTs actually read that will be reviewed shortly.

129detailmuse
May 26, 4:09pm Top

>128 rabbitprincess: Culling unreads can be very difficult, congratulations!

130Miss_Moneypenny
May 26, 9:26pm Top

>128 rabbitprincess: Congrats on the culling! That just means more room on the TBR shelves right? :D

131rabbitprincess
May 26, 9:46pm Top

>129 detailmuse: Thanks! It was a bit easier because they were all used books, so I hadn't spent much money on them. And the Gill books were part of another series I've gone off, so I thought might as well just get rid of them.

>130 Miss_Moneypenny: That's the goal, but I seem to fill the space just as quickly! ;)

****

Doctor Who: The First Doctor Adventures, Volume 1 (Big Finish audio drama)
ROOT 40 of 50
Source: Big Finish
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: http://www.librarything.com/review/150957699

David Bradley portrays the First Doctor excellently, and the stories in this set are paced and structured in a way that is highly reminiscent of the TV series. However, I hope they don't set too many stories in the States without casting more American actors. British actors doing American accents can be distracting on a large scale.

The Heaven Tree, by Edith Pargeter
ROOT 41 of 50
Source: Hay-on-Wye, Wales
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: http://www.librarything.com/review/145800412

Took a little bit to get into this one, but I ended up being fully invested by the end. The disadvantage to reading this book in spring was that I couldn't stealthily wipe tears away with a scarf :P Looking forward to retrieving my copies of books 2 and 3 from my parents.

132karenmarie
May 29, 9:49am Top

Congrats on culling books, RP! I'm trying to gear up and do some of that this week - get rid of some old romances I know I won't ever read again. I might even try to pull 10 books from the unread stacks that I know I'll never read, too.

133rabbitprincess
Edited: Jun 30, 7:36pm Top

>132 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen! Good luck with the culling!

****

Two more reviews, then a May recap.

Mystery in the Channel, by Freeman Wills Crofts
ROOT 42 of 50
Source: Christmas gift
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/137167300

I really enjoyed this book. It was satisfyingly boaty and Inspector French is a likeable character. I'll read more in the series as I find them.

The Brothers Karamazov, by Fyodor Dostoevsky (translated by Constance Garnett)
ROOT 43 of 50
Source: Serial Reader
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/149547802

It was this book that made me decide to start counting Serial Reader reads as ROOTs; I wanted this to count for SOMETHING. Also, as a public-domain ebook, it could theoretically have been downloaded off Project Gutenberg and read that way. Anyway, I read this and am content that I did, but I wouldn't read it again.

****

May recap: 9 + 5 = 14 ROOTs pulled (YTD: 43)

I read 9 ROOTs:

The Hanging Tree, by Ben Aaronovitch*
The Thick of It: The Missing DoSAC Files, by Armando Iannucci, Jesse Armstrong, Simon Blackwell, Tony Roche and Ian Martin
L’Affaire Saint-Fiacre, by Georges Simenon*
Grey Seas Under, by Farley Mowat*
Oblivion, by Arnaldur Indriðason (translated by Victoria Cribb)*
Doctor Who: The First Doctor Adventures, Volume 1 (Big Finish audio drama)
The Heaven Tree, by Edith Pargeter
Mystery in the Channel, by Freeman Wills Crofts*
The Brothers Karamazov, by Fyodor Dostoevsky (translated by Constance Garnett) (Serial Reader)

And I upROOTed 5 more:

Murder on the Minnesota, by Conrad Allen
McGarr and the Sienese Conspiracy, by Bartholomew Gill
The Death of an Irish Sinner, by Bartholomew Gill
Waiting for Godot, by Samuel Beckett
The Misanthrope and Tartuffe, by Molière

ROOT of the month: Mystery in the Channel

Books from the Pool:

Completed this month: 5
In progress: 2
On deck: 1

In June I should really knuckle down and make progress on Father Brown. But I am also reading Antonia Fraser’s biography of Mary Queen of Scots, which I borrowed from my mum and which is more interesting…

134Jackie_K
Jun 1, 6:33am Top

>133 rabbitprincess: re The Brothers Karamazov, my friend who is a Russian lit nut *and* a translator says that Constance Garnett is awful, and certainly when I looked her up on wikipedia I was really put off - her Russian wasn't as good as it could be so I am not that confident in the accuracy of her translations, and my friend's take on her is basically that she was trying to turn everything she translated into Jane Austen. It convinced me enough to not read any of her translations, so I always check carefully before downloading!

135rabbitprincess
Edited: Jun 2, 9:12pm Top

>134 Jackie_K: I've heard that too about Garnett and would certainly trust your friend's judgment on the matter (with double credentials!). I debated getting a paper copy with a more trusted translator, but in the end I went with Serial Reader because the bite-size chunks made it easier to handle, and the app gives me a little "huzzah!" every time I finish an issue. I need that encouragement ;)

One classic novel in translation for which I *did* get a paper copy is Les Misérables, by Victor Hugo; I asked for (and received) the new Penguin Deluxe translation by Christine Donougher for Christmas last year.

136rabbitprincess
Jun 3, 9:24am Top

I'm always amazed when I manage to read a play as my bus book, especially Shakespeare.

Henry V, by William Shakespeare
ROOT 44 of 50
Source: BMV (Toronto, Ontario)
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/112239023

This was a fairly energetic play. My favourite scene (apart from the famous speeches) was the French princess learning English, with a teacher who wasn't the most proficient and who dared not correct her mistress's pronunciation. Being French/English bilingual myself I got an especial kick out of it.

137Robertgreaves
Jun 3, 9:45pm Top

>136 rabbitprincess: That reminds me of one of my pet peeves. An international cast of characters and no clues about what language they are all speaking and whether they have differing degrees of fluency. In the old days you got some eye dialect and even if it was for comic effect, it was at least an acknowledgement of the problem.

138rabbitprincess
Jun 5, 9:01pm Top

>137 Robertgreaves: I guess it's too fine a balance to strike these days, for whatever reason. Another character in the play is Welsh, and I picked up on that right away (he kept interjecting "look you", which seems to be to stereotypical Welsh dialogue what "oot and aboot" is to stereotypical Canadian dialogue).

****

All of the accents in this story are English. Well, maybe the robot doesn't have an English accent. I haven't watched the story yet, so I can't say.

Doctor Who and the Giant Robot, by Terrance Dicks
ROOT 45 of 50
Source: bought somewhere in Scotland 2013
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/98198358

This is a novelization of the first Fourth Doctor story. Good fun! Exactly what I wanted.

139rabbitprincess
Jun 18, 8:18pm Top

Finally back with another ROOT. I've been picking ones that take a long time, because that makes perfect sense :D

Du bon usage des étoiles, by Dominique Fortier
ROOT 46 of 50
Source: Renaud-Bray, Montréal, QC (Place Desjardins location)
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/138732328

I really liked this and would recommend it perhaps more than my 3.5 rating would suggest. Fortier captured the two very different atmospheres well and I'd certainly recommend it over The Terror.

140rabbitprincess
Jun 20, 8:03pm Top

Finished a re-read of a classic via Serial Reader. Because these are public-domain ebooks that I can theoretically "own" (unlike library ebooks), I count them as ROOTs.

Emma, by Jane Austen
ROOT 47 of 50
Source: Serial Reader
Rating: 4/5
Review (from my first read): https://www.librarything.com/work/364/reviews/71330507

I first read this 10 years ago (wow), and I have little to add to my original review. Still liked the book. This time around, I was totally blindsided by Mrs. Weston having a baby. "Wait, what?! When did she get pregnant?! I'm so confused."

141rabbitprincess
Jun 26, 9:08pm Top

This year, I'm attending the Bloody Scotland crime festival in Stirling (Scotland), so I thought I should get this book read before the trip!

Bloody Scotland, ed. Lin Anderson
ROOT 48 of 50
Source: Bouchercon 2017
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/147044597

I bought this book at Bouchercon, and my having it in my hand prompted two other people in line in the book room to grab copies for themselves. It is worth picking up for the chance to try out Scottish crime writers' work AND perhaps find some new places to visit!

142Jackie_K
Jun 28, 11:48am Top

>141 rabbitprincess: Ah, it's good to see you doing your research! Were there any places in particular that grabbed you from this?

143rabbitprincess
Jun 28, 6:07pm Top

>142 Jackie_K: Bothwell Castle and Crookston Castle caught my eye in particular! Of the two, Crookston has a better chance of being squeezed onto the itinerary, because Mum wants to see House for an Art Lover, and that's kind of in the area (at least by cab).

144rabbitprincess
Edited: Jun 29, 10:51pm Top

Probably my last ROOT for June.

The Human Factor, by Graham Greene
ROOT 49 of 50
Source: Berry and Peterson, Kingston
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/82818555

I really liked this! It made a surprisingly fast read. I also noticed that the names "Maurice" and "Sarah" appeared here, as they did in The End of the Affair -- but they're used by different characters.

Also, hurray! With this book I have FINALLY reached the point on my 2-for-1 TBR ticker where I've paid off all the books I bought on my Wales trip last year. Now to start paying off all the books I bought at Bouchercon...

145Jackie_K
Jun 30, 4:16am Top

>143 rabbitprincess: Oh cool - yes Crookston Castle isn't too far from HFAAL (which is fabulous, by the way - I've visited it a few times, although never been to Crookston Castle). When I lived in Glasgow I was only a couple of miles away from HFAAL, so know that neck of the woods quite well.

146rabbitprincess
Jun 30, 7:47pm Top

>145 Jackie_K: Excellent! Our plan on the last day of the trip is to check out of the Stirling flat, then hang out in Glasgow for the day and stay overnight before our flight home, for which we have to be at the airport at stupid o'clock. And given that HFAAL is close to the airport, it makes a good place to see. But I want to go back to the Kelvingrove...

****

June recap: 6 ROOTS pulled (YTD: 49)

Henry V, by William Shakespeare*
Doctor Who and the Giant Robot, by Terrance Dicks*
Du bon usage des étoiles, by Dominique Fortier
Emma, by Jane Austen (reread, Serial Reader)
Bloody Scotland, ed. Lin Anderson*
The Human Factor, by Graham Greene

ROOT of the month: Bloody Scotland

Books from the Pool:

Completed this month: 3
In progress: 2
On deck: 1

****

And because it's halfway through the year, time for a Pool update!



Cowabunga! I'm about 2/3 of the way through my Pool and it's halfway through the year. I think shrinking the Pool helped a bit. In the second half of the year I'll have to focus on the historical fiction: I still have the Dunnett, Llywelyn, and Tranter to read. And of course Father Brown is taking a lot longer than I expected...

147rabbitprincess
Jul 1, 7:00pm Top

It is unfit for human habitation outside. This afternoon the temperature was 35 C with a humidex of 47! It's been like this all weekend, so I've been having a readathon. As part of the readathon, I finished a long-standing ROOT and met my goal!

The Complete Father Brown, by G.K. Chesterton
ROOT 50 of 50 - GOAL MET
Source: Xmas gift many years ago
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/work/87702/reviews/70475166

This was a re-read, and it was interesting to revisit after many years away from it.

148detailmuse
Jul 2, 5:58pm Top

>147 rabbitprincess: Gooooooooooaaaaallll! Congratulations! and the Pool is looking good, too!

149rabbitprincess
Edited: Jul 8, 9:07pm Top

>148 detailmuse: Thanks! I think having a smaller Pool really helps.

****

First book over goal is a book about the First Doctor (Who).

Who’s There: The Life and Career of William Hartnell, by Jessica Carney
ROOT 51 of 50
Source: Xmas gift
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/149406355

I enjoyed learning about William Hartnell's non-Doctor Who career and found it especially appropriate that his granddaughter wrote it :)

150Familyhistorian
Jul 9, 7:52pm Top

Congratulations for reaching your goal already. I see you have a Mrs. Pollifax and a Camilla McPhee in your pool. I found them both very good. I hope you enjoy them.

151MissWatson
Jul 10, 7:33am Top

Congrats on reaching your goal so early!

152rabbitprincess
Jul 10, 8:49pm Top

>150 Familyhistorian: Thanks! They are both re-reads, so I hope they hold up :)

>151 MissWatson: Thanks! And welcome back from your holidays!

****

Next ROOT is from Serial Reader (I can theoretically download these as ebooks from Project Gutenberg or Faded Page, so I call them ROOTs).

Captains Courageous, by Rudyard Kipling
ROOT 52 of 50
Source: Serial Reader
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/157383700

This ticked several of the right boxes for me. I love stories of the sea, and fishing vessels, and stories that mention Canada (in this case, the Grand Banks of Newfoundland). Easily my favourite Kipling.

153rabbitprincess
Jul 13, 6:49pm Top

Hot weather calls for books that can be knocked out quickly.

Castrovalva, by Christopher H. Bidmead
ROOT 53 of 50
Source: By the Lake Books, Burlington, ON
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/149484135

I watched the Fifth Doctor story of the same name over on BritBox, then decided to read the novelization. I'm glad I had the visuals from the story in my head, especially with the weirdness at the end!

154leslie.98
Jul 14, 4:23pm Top

Congrats on reaching your goal!!

155rabbitprincess
Edited: Jul 19, 9:26am Top

>154 leslie.98: Thanks, Leslie!

****

It's been a busy week around these parts, and I took the day off today to help counteract some of the busyness. Having the morning to myself means that I finally have time to review this book that I finished on Monday:

The Man in the Yellow Raft, by C.S. Forester
ROOT 54 of 50
Source: By the Lake Books, Burlington, ON
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/149484052

I read this for the Go Review That Book! group, and I liked it very much. It has the attention to nautical detail and naval tactics that you would expect from the author of the Hornblower novels, just in a different setting.

156Familyhistorian
Jul 21, 12:19am Top

>155 rabbitprincess: It's always good to have a day off to relax and get back to the reads.

157rabbitprincess
Edited: Jul 22, 6:02pm Top

>156 Familyhistorian: Yes, it was a nice break!

****

Some pre-trip reading (location: Glasgow).

Witness the Dead, by Craig Robertson
ROOT 55 of 50
Source: work "take a book, leave a book" shelf
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/150021877

We have a "take a book, leave a book" shelf, which is where I found this one. I wish I knew who'd left it so that I could discuss it with them! It was a good find.

158Familyhistorian
Jul 25, 1:55pm Top

Enjoy your trip. Are you going to Glasgow?

159rabbitprincess
Jul 31, 8:42pm Top

>158 Familyhistorian: Thanks! Yes, we'll be flying into and out of Glasgow, so we'll spend about a day and a half there in total. We spent a week there on our last trip and it was lovely.

****

July recap: 6 ROOTS pulled (YTD: 55)

The Complete Father Brown, by G.K. Chesterton (reread)*
Who’s There: The Life and Career of William Hartnell, by Jessica Carney
Captains Courageous, by Rudyard Kipling (Serial Reader)
Castrovalva, by Christopher H. Bidmead
The Man in the Yellow Raft, by C.S. Forester
Witness the Dead, by Craig Robertson

ROOT of the month: Who’s There: The Life and Career of William Hartnell

Books from the Pool:

Completed this month: 1
In progress: 1
On deck: 2

This month I’d really, really like to get to one of my historical novels, and perhaps put a dent in the re-reads.

160rabbitprincess
Edited: Aug 9, 9:21pm Top

First ROOT of August is courtesy of Serial Reader.

The Prisoner of Zenda, by Anthony Hope
ROOT 56 of 50
Source: Serial Reader
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/158227139

I enjoyed this! I didn't know what to expect, but I found it fun.

161leslie.98
Aug 4, 4:18pm Top

>160 rabbitprincess: Now you should watch the 1937 film of it with Ronald Colman!

162connie53
Aug 5, 11:16am Top

Hi RP, I hope everything is alright with you and yours. I'm just catching up on threads.

163Jackie_K
Aug 6, 10:07am Top

>160 rabbitprincess: Sometimes swashbuckling and slightly bananas is just what you need. And it's free on Project Gutenberg - I might have to indulge!

164rabbitprincess
Aug 6, 6:06pm Top

>161 leslie.98: Darn, my library doesn't have it! I'll have to check the TCM schedule.

>162 connie53: Nice to see you, Connie! Things are OK here :)

>163 Jackie_K: Yes! It is pretty frothy.

165rabbitprincess
Edited: Aug 15, 7:49pm Top

Turning to some lighter books this week. Things have been a bit busy on the work front.

Speak Ill of the Dead, by Mary Jane Maffini
ROOT 57 of 50
Going Through the Stacks #70

Source: Prime Crime Books, Ottawa
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/70475364

Managed to squeeze in a re-read of a book in a series set where I live now. Part of the fun is knowing so much more of the geography -- when I first read it, I hadn't lived here very long. I'm also now the same age as the protagonist, which is weird, because she still seems like such a grownup!

Logopolis, by Christopher H. Bidmead
ROOT 58 of 50
Source: Book Bazaar
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/117653055

The Fourth Doctor regenerates into the Fifth in this Target novelization. Some good lines in here!

166karenmarie
Aug 15, 9:58am Top

Hi RP!

Looks like you're getting lots of good reading done this summer.

167rabbitprincess
Edited: Aug 19, 1:21pm Top

>166 karenmarie: Hi Karen! Yes, it has been a pretty good summer for reading.

Ancillary Sword, by Ann Leckie
ROOT 59 of 50
Source: Perfect Books, Ottawa
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/140471762

I enjoyed this one more than Ancillary Justice, possibly because I had read Ancillary Justice! This is a richly imagined world and takes a bit to get into, but I really enjoyed the details.

168rabbitprincess
Edited: Aug 19, 1:25pm Top

It's been a busy month with a longer commute than usual, but the upside is I'm getting some good bus reading done... in quantity, if not in quality.

The Getaway, by Jim Thompson
ROOT 60 of 50
Source: BMV, Toronto
Rating: 2/5
Review: http://www.librarything.com/review/116825039

Maybe my aforementioned busyness made this book not work for me as well as I would have liked... I felt like I was skimming over it rather than reading it. Oh well, at least I can send it to a used-book sale.

169rabbitprincess
Aug 20, 8:00pm Top

Managed to read an audiobook on a road trip this weekend, and I finished another Serial Reader read.

Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself, by Alan Alda (audio, read by Alan Alda)
ROOT 61 of 50
Source: ripped from CDs
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/86455843

I counted this in my 2-for-1 TBR because this was the first time I'd read the audiobook; I've previously read it in print. It is a good road-trip book.

The Book of Dragons, by E. Nesbit
ROOT 62 of 50
Source: Serial Reader
Rating: 2.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/158973981

This was OK. I liked the actual stories, but the narration was a bit off-putting in places, and the casual dismissal of girls ("You're smart, for a girl"), while not in every story, was annoying when it did happen. That made it more dated than I would have liked.

170rabbitprincess
Aug 26, 9:00am Top

I've started building up a little cushion of ROOTs with a Big Finish audio drama that was packaged as four separate episodes (thus counting as four ROOTs) rather than a box set.

Cyberman 1.1: Scorpius, by Nicholas Briggs (Big Finish audio drama)
ROOT 63 of 50
Source: Big Finish
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/148553908

The theme music for this set is chilling, and the story whooshes right along. The Cybermen are a little hard to understand, because their voices are fainter and a bit more crackly (?) than the current TV-series version or even the 1980s version (as seen in "Earthshock", for example). But I am totally absorbed in this story and will be devouring the other three episodes in short order.

171rabbitprincess
Aug 31, 10:25pm Top

Sneaking in one last ROOT for August:

Pilote de guerre, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
ROOT 64 of 50
Source: library book sale
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/129465584

I've exceeded my goal for French books (this is book 3; I usually aim for 2) and am feeling rather proud of myself.

****

August recap: 9 ROOTS pulled (YTD: 64)

The Prisoner of Zenda, by Anthony Hope (Serial Reader)
*Speak Ill of the Dead, by Mary Jane Maffini (reread)
Logopolis, by Christopher H. Bidmead
*Ancillary Sword, by Ann Leckie
*The Getaway, by Jim Thompson
*Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself, by Alan Alda (audio, read by Alan Alda)
The Book of Dragons, by E. Nesbit (Serial Reader)
Cyberman 1.1: Scorpius, by Nicholas Briggs (Big Finish audio drama)
Pilote de guerre, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

ROOT of the month: Ancillary Sword

Books from the Pool:

Completed this month: 4 (woot!)
In progress: 0
On deck: 1

I’ll be in Scotland for the second half of September, so I’m hoping that the public-domain ebooks on my iPad will come to the rescue in terms of keeping my ROOT count healthy.

172karenmarie
Sep 3, 11:00am Top

Hi RP!

Wow, Scotland. How exciting. Business or pleasure or both?

173rabbitprincess
Sep 3, 12:49pm Top

>172 karenmarie: Hi Karen! It's all pleasure. No excuse to go to Scotland for work, unfortunately ;)

****

First ROOT of September is another Doctor Who audio.

Cyberman 1.2: Fear, by Nicholas Briggs (Big Finish audio drama)
ROOT 65 of 50
Source: Big Finish
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/148553935

Part 2 of this story is just as chilling as the first. Very effective ending. The Cybermen are a bit hard to understand, though, because of the way their voices are modulated. Not sassy like the Earthshock Cybermen or inadvertently funny like the New Who Cybermen.

174rabbitprincess
Edited: Sep 7, 10:18pm Top

One advantage to having appointments clear across town is that they provide a lot of bus-reading time. Finished this book on the bus yesterday.

Beneath the Mountain, by Luca d’Andrea (translated by Howard Curtis)
ROOT 66 of 50
Source: swag bag at Bouchercon 2017
Rating: 2/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/147042861

I read this as an uncorrected proof (and hoo boy, the copyeditors were going to need to tidy up a lot in it), and it was certainly worth what I paid for it ;) I liked the setting and the helicopter aspect, but the narrator was occasionally tiresome and idiotic. Still, an interesting experience to read a proof and get a glimpse into what a book looks like earlier in the publishing process.

175rabbitprincess
Edited: Sep 11, 9:27pm Top

Spent Sunday afternoon knitting and finishing up an audio drama.

Cyberman 1.3: Conversion, by Nicholas Briggs (Big Finish audio drama)
ROOT 67 of 50
Source: Big Finish
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/148553951

Part 3 of this story continues to maintain the same atmosphere and pacing. However, too much smooching in this one. It's especially icky on earbuds (they're smooching right in your ear, yuck).

Cyberman 1.4: Telos, by Nicholas Briggs (Big Finish audio drama)
ROOT 68 of 50
Source: Big Finish
Rating: 4/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/148553976

Part 4 is a corker of a conclusion, with some heartbreaking moments and some scenes that evoked Tomb of the Cybermen. Definitely listen to these four stories as close together as possible (I read this one immediately after finishing Part 3, which says something about how addictive they were).

176rabbitprincess
Sep 12, 6:31pm Top

And another Doctor Who novel made its way into my reading rotation...

The Silent Stars Go By, by Dan Abnett
ROOT 69 of 50
Source: BMV
Rating: 3.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/129352656

A good Eleventh Doctor story with Amy and Rory. Rory has his own storyline in this one, which is nice.

177rabbitprincess
Sep 15, 11:31am Top

Reading some classics on Gutenberg:

The Duchess of Malfi, by John Webster
ROOT 70 of 50
Source: Project Gutenberg
Rating: 3/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/160436127

Certainly a fast-paced play; so fast-paced that years seemed to go by in seconds. I'm going to have to read a print copy for some extra commentary and background, although it was good to read just the story first.

178leslie.98
Sep 17, 9:00am Top

>177 rabbitprincess: I read this play a few years ago and all I really recall is the high body count. Those Elizabethan playwrights didn't hesitate to kill off almost everyone!

179Robertgreaves
Sep 17, 8:07pm Top

>177 rabbitprincess: >178 leslie.98: I've never actually read any Webster but that's always been my impression of him - high body count and very gory. The unpleasant teenage boy with the rats in Shakespeare In Love was supposed to be him.

180rabbitprincess
Sep 18, 4:02am Top

>178 leslie.98: It did remind me a bit of the last act of Hamlet, with everyone dropping like flies!

>179 Robertgreaves: Ha! I did watch Shakespeare in Love but a long time ago. The gore didn't strike me as unusual, but I did find it convenient that people waited to die until they'd finished their deathbed proclamations.

181leslie.98
Sep 18, 6:54pm Top

>180 rabbitprincess: Your comment to >179 Robertgreaves: made me think of Monty Python for some reason - it just seems like something they would have parodied...

182rabbitprincess
Sep 20, 3:32pm Top

>181 leslie.98: Yes, it does! Holy Grail popped into my head when I read your comment :)

****

Surprisingly, I have managed to finish a book on vacation!

47 Sorrows, by Janet Kellough
ROOT 71 of 50
Source: Bearly Used Books, Parry Sound, ON
Rating: 2.5/5
Review: https://www.librarything.com/review/134021655

This was OK. The setting was new: Wellington, Ontario, which is between Toronto and Kingston in Prince Edward County. The strength was the history; the mystery is almost a subplot.

Group: 2018 ROOT (READ OUR OWN TOMES)

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