*** What Are You Reading Now? - Part 4
This is a continuation of the topic *** What Are You Reading Now? - Part 3.
This topic was continued by *** What Are You Reading Now? - Part 5.
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Half of the year is gone (or almost gone for some). How is your reading year going? If you had any plans about the year, how close are you to your goals?
Stay cool if you live in a hot country, stay warm if it is cold where you are and come and share what you are reading :)
I noticed that on the previous thread somebody was reading There There. That is a book that is getting lots of buzz. I definitely want to get my hands on it.
My Fourth of July book is a science fiction title Revenant Gun. THis is the third one in the Mechineries of Empire series by Yoon Ha Lee. These books are great fun, with outstanding battle scenes but they can be confusing due to the gender switch ups and other language mixing that the author does.
I figured a shoot’em up bang-bang book was perfect for reading on a day off and on a holiday known for it s big bangs.
Half a year and I'm starting to wonder if my reading plan will hold. I finished The Gospel According to Mark yesterday (3 days late, but I want to type up notes).
Elsewhere, I put down The Collected Stories of Flanery O'Connor halfway through for a break. Now committed to finished the much much much less demanding Ready Player One. On audio I'm listening to Chasing Hillary by New York Times writer Amy Chozick, which has me kind of depressed about HC and the press, and I'm still in the Iowa caucus. Also... I won't finish before my library loan runs out.
I'm reading and enjoying immensely Madeline Miller's Circe, which is just wonderful.
I'm also reading Country Dark by Chris Offutt, which is a noir set in Kentucky in the middle of the last century, and Frankenstein in Baghdad by Ahmed Saadawi, which is interesting so far.
I just finished Brass by Xhenet Aliu, about a Lithuanian-American girl who becomes involved with an Albanian line cook, and about her daughter, all set in the decaying industrial city of Waterbury, Connecticut. It lost tension in the final chapters, but overall it was interesting and well-written.
I am working through The Big Book of the Continental Op and a few fiction magazines (both new and old) - for some reason I am not much in the mood for reading lately so had been listening to audiodrama most days instead.
Just finished Kanehara Hitomi's 蛇にピアス (Snakes and Earrings) which I read primarily in June but finished in July despite being such a short book (114 pages in Japanese version) since the World Cup took over my life. I need to try to finally gather my thoughts on this one even though I had already seen the movie two times before reading the book.
I read Tommy Orange's There There, which was very much worth a read if you like contemporary fiction. Now onto an oldie that a friend sent me from her shelves, From Rockaway by Jill Eisenstadt, because the cover is about as summery as you're going to get. It's not grabbing me hard, but neither is it super challenging—just the thing for lying awake wayyy too late with a dog who's very scared of the firepower that the jerks on our block had out until 2 a.m. NOTE: As far as comfy reading spots go, I do not recommend a dog bed, no matter how large.
I have that book Brass by Xhenet Aliu on my shelves. I was lucky enough to hear this author speak at one of my library conferences and she was very interesting. The book sounded good too. This is her first novel, but she has a book of short stories that was published previously. I may have to move that title up in my reading line as it sounds like that it is a pretty fair novel for a first timer.
I started reading Mad Enchantment: Claude Monet and the Painting of the Water Lilies by Ross King. This one looks like a big book, but after looking at it closer I discovered that it has almost 75 pages of notes and index at the end. That brings the page total down to 350. So far I have read 30 pages.
>16 benitastrnad: The ebook edition of Barbarian Days is on sale right now—$1.99 for Kindle, Kobo, Google Play, B&N. $4.99 iBooks because Apple. I clicked a few days ago—I read an excerpt from it a couple of years back (New Yorker maybe?) and liked it a lot, even though I have zero interest in surfing.
Emerged out of the book funk by reading a few lighter books and then taking up the excellent She Would Be King by Wayétu Moore (reviews on thread)
Reading a book on Scandinavian Crime Fiction...still.
At night reading Thirty Umrigar's latest, The Secrets Between Us which is reading much like her first book which I read years ago.
During the day I am reading a scathing dystopian novel set in the nearly-but-not--quite-now, about the silencing of women, Vox by Christina Dalcher. I took it to bed with me the first night and had some really, really weird dreams so it's limited to the daytime now. It's riveting....
Just back from a busy trip to Alaska, so not much reading progress. Still reading Chaotic Corgis which I started on the plane and will have to probably start over, since I cannot remember most of what is happening.
I read The fifth season by N.K. Jemisin and really liked it, even though I was somewhat disappointed by the ending (of course it is the first book in a trilogy so maybe that was to be expected). I've had a hard time recently in finding fantasy I liked and this book is that and much more, with an original world building, very well thought-of characters, and a very humane voice.
I'm now reading Blameless by Gail Carriger, the third book in the Parasol protectorate series and still a light and fun read.
I finished The Last Tudor by Philippa Gregory. Let's just say that it will probably be The Last Philippa Gregory for me. I'm now reading Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows but may not stick with it. I'm not a fan of books that scream "WOMEN'S FICTION!!!" I feel like I'm being condescended to. Also listening to Leonardo Da Vinci by Walter Isaacson, wonderfully read by Alfred Molina. Can't find the right touchstone for that one.
I'm reading Frankenstein in Baghdad by Ahmed Saadawi and, so far, it has charmed me although it's far from being a charming book.
I'm also reading The Outsider by Stephen King, which I'm enjoying, but it is about as Kingy a novel as it can be.
I recently finished Circe by Madeline Miller, which I loved.
I'm reading The Removes, a historical novel set in the West, about a woman taken captive by Indians, Libbie Custer and her husband.
I'm reading Confessions of the Fox, which is fun, weird, and extremely different from anything else I've read lately. At about 1/3 of the way in I'm interested to see whether he'll pull off the momentum—switching between a modern-day narrative and an older, found text can be a great framing device (I'm thinking The Weight of Ink) but the author has to maintain the energy of both threads of it doesn't work. At any rate, so far I'm liking it.
I finished the final book in the Machineries of Empire trilogy by Yoon Ha Lee. Revenant Gun was one great big thrill ride in space, with lots of political intrigue and battle scenes. I have enjoyed this trilogy and from the looks of it, this won't be the last of this universe that readers can expect to see. I like this guys writing and will be reading more of his work when it is published.
I started reading Impostor Syndrome by Mishell Baker for my light fun read. She writes urban fantasy set in Hollywood, and the series, called the Arcadia Project is lots of fun.
Reading Out to Pasture but not over the hill by Effie Leland Wilder. I have all four books in this series, and I think I read them years ago. Written in diary form, this short book provides a sometimes humorous look at life in a senior community, yet sometimes include pathos and empathy. I am reading this for Category Challenge AlphaKIT for August.
Back from vacation where I quickly finished Ready Player One, and then slowly got through about 2/3 of Love in the Time of Cholera, the July book for my Marquez theme. Now that I'm home, I'll focus on getting to The Gospel According to Luke, completing my July target for my bible theme...but first my notes on Mark.
Clémence - I'm in a such a weird place with reading it's a little hard to say. I can appreciate it on a several levels and I'm always happy to have read what I've read, so in that sense I'm liking it a lot. It has somethings different from all his other works - quietly complex, while on the surface a romantic love story.
Just finished Out to Pasture and enjoyed it immensely. I will be traveling for a couple of days again, so need to find something fun to read on the plane.
I'm reading The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twenty-Fifth Annual Collection, edited by Gardner Dozois, because it has a story of Ted Chiang that I haven't yet read in it. It's longer than I expected (I bought the ebook version), with 700 hundred pages and more than 30 short stories.
I finished Confessions of the Fox, which was very enjoyable and different. You need to have a tolerance for footnotes and dual narratives, but I thought it hit the right notes between entertaining and political, and was really a breath of fresh air.
I also read The Dry in a quick few days—good solid thriller, kept me interested, if not busting up any genre stereotypes.
I keep falling behind on posting on these threads, so I'll just say that I've recently finished The Book of Athyra by Steven Brust (which contains books 6 and 7 of his Vald Taltos series) and am now reading The View from the Cheap Seats, a collection of miscellaneous non-fiction pieces from Neil Gaiman.
>44 avidmom: I'll be curious to see how you like Confederacy of Dunces. It's very much a love it or hate it book.
>38 chlorine: finally got that review written : )
I’m reading The Gospel According to Luke, but will get interrupted by life before I can finish and will have to come back it. Finally got The Attention Merchants back from the library, on audio, and so I’m learning about online evolution - google, Huffington Post and clickbait, Facebook among other sights. Makes me want to pull out of fb. I might finish this week. Also picked up The Complete Stores of Flannery O’Connor again, but I’m still not enjoying the middle section of stories.
Just finished Chaotic Corgis (Cozy Corgi Mysteries) by Mildred Abbott.
I finished reading Jules Verne's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea while on vacation, which makes one tome down this year as I've been reading mostly short books. I'm also 200 pages into a 900 page nonfiction tome that is really interesting but really great for taking little naps every 10 pages so it's making it a bit of a slow read and now that I'm back from vacation my progress will slow down rather than speed up.
I absolutely hated Asymmetry--didn't finish it and even returned it for a refund. It's a novel in three parts, but I just couldn't get past the first, about an aspiring young writer and an older successful writer who have an affair of sorts. I say "of sorts" because it's a creepy relationship in which each person is using the other. Plus it's written in a self-consciously "Aren't I avant garde?" manner. Time is too short to be irritated by a book.
So I've moved on to The Love Object by Edna O'Brien and The Summer Guest by Alison Anderson.
Finished Over What Hill? by Effie Leland Wilder, the second in the series that began with Out to Pasture. The books are written in diary form, and tell about the daily interactions and humorous yet poignant happenings at a retirement home set in the South. 4.5 stars
Reading Silent in the Sanctuary by Deanna Raybourn, for the Category Challenge
>63 Dilara86: Vinegar Girl was pretty good, although it made some weird departures. New Boy was just awful. Sorry, Tracy Chevalier, but Othello set on a middle school playground just didn't work. I liked Shylock Is My Name well enough. I haven't read Dunbar or Macbeth yet.
Finished Scribe by Alison Hagy and Ordeal by Jorn Lier Horst (crime novel, 2016, Norway) on the train to DC and back. The first is an Appalachian dystopia (and more!); the second, another fine police procedural from Horst, a former Norwegian police officer.
Also started Bodies of Light by Sarah Moss.
I read a galley of a friend's upcoming novel, Still Life with Monkey, which is about many things—among them a marriage faced with disability, hope and the lack of it, and what exactly might constitute a good life. And yes, a monkey, who is a very charming character in her own right.
Now I'm reading a few things: Bunk: The Rise of Hoaxes, Humbug, Plagiarists, Phonies, Post-Facts, and Fake News by Kevin Young, whom I interviewed a while back when he became director of the Schomburg Center here in NYC—I've been looking forward to this one for a while. It is, however, very scholarly (as well as inventive and political, all in good ways), not to mention hardcover and heavy, so I'm not going to be toting regularly on my daily commute (2.5 hours total, much of which I end up standing).
So I'm leavening that with The Selected Poems of Donald Hall, which are lovely, and because over and over I keep seeing the ebook on sale and I keep almost pulling the trigger but then thinking I could just get the library ebook, I'm mooting this point by reading the library ebook of Adam Haslett's Imagine Me Gone.
>67 lisapeet: I've not been an especially big fan of Donald Hall, but I adore the work of his wife, Jane Kenyon.
>68 avaland: I like them both in different ways—hers have much more depth, but there's something Robert-Louis-Stevenson-like about his that reminds me of me as a kid first reading poetry. If that makes any sense whatsoever.
>69 lisapeet: That does make sense. Most of my contact with him has been since the death of Jane. I went to a reading for his collection Without and it was so, so sad. It's been really interesting to see his latest collection selling well (for poetry, that is) now that he is deceased (but then, I am in NH so one would expect it).
Good to find another reading poetry. I think we may be a dying breed.
I'm reading The English Patient which has been sitting on my shelf for quite a while. It just won the "Golden Booker" so I thought I should finally read it.
I'm also reading Other Minds, a nonfiction book about octopuses and what their evolution and mind can tell us about ourselves, and The Years by Virginia Woolf which is the last novel of hers that I haven't read yet.
>70 avaland: You may be right. I was a big poetry reader as a little kid—I started off on children's collections and was given a few really good gateway books as well, and it was taught in my grade school. The usual stuff, but that was enough—I still remember the fascination some of those poems held for me. and that set me up for a lifelong poetry habit. But I'm not sure how many people not in their 40s or 50s got that early inoculation.
>72 lisapeet: At age 10 our class had a field trip to Longfellow's birthplace and it had a profound effect on me. I'm not sure I can tell you why (I'm nearly 63, btw), but it began a great lifetime love affair with poetry.
>70 avaland: The poetry discussion is interesting to me. I just turned 40, so was in school in the 80s and 90s. I certainly studied poetry in school, but I never really connected with it. As an adult I wouldn't even know where to begin. It also doesn't seem to fit my reading life very well. I imagine that you can't just sit down and read poetry for an hour like I do with the books I read. So I would need to fit it into my reading life in a different way? Also, when I have tried poetry as an adult, I have tried the classics like Browning and Dickinson and Longfellow and I wonder if I'd feel more connection with contemporary poets who I unfortunately know little about. Maybe we need a Club Read poetry thread? Or maybe we have one and I've ignored it . . .
I will say that my kids never laugh harder while reading than while reading the poetry of Shel Silverstein and Jack Prelutsky.
There is a group of poetry readers in the 75'ers. Mark, Joe, and Paul. Each one of them has a thread where they talk about the poetry they are reading. I am not sure if they have a thread devoted just to poetry, but any one of them would know for sure. Just check out their threads in the 75 challenge group.
I finished reading Mad Enchantment: Claude Monet and the Painting of the Water Lilies by Ross King. This is a biography of the last group of large scale impressionist paintings that Claude Monet did. He started them in 1907, then abandoned them until 1914 when he started on them in earnest. These are huge paintings and they were done between 1914 and his death in 1926. The book documents the development of these amazing paintings and the deep friendship between Monet and Georges Clemenceau. Much of the documentation about the paintings and about Monet's life during that time was based on the letters sent between the two friends. It was a joy to read this book about them.
Regarding the poetry discussion: I was introduced to poetry in elementary school. We memorized and recited poems. I still remember "In Flanders Fields" in its entirety. I also had to memorize a poem in German class, and can still recall bits of it in German. I have not read poetry lately, other than Shakespeare. My book group once grabbed onto a book of Cowboy Poetry and that was a fun read. Shel Silverstein still has a place upon my shelf, although I have not opened him lately. My dear departed spouse could recite The Cremation of Sam McGee from memory!
I have a neglected copy of that as well, so you are NOT the very last reader! :)
I finished The Love Object by Edna O'Brien last night--great collection of her stories written over 50+ years. I'm getting very bored with The Summer Guest and may not finish it. I'm not one who needs books to be action-packed, but pages of genteel conversation can only go so far. It may be time to move to There There.
First August finish! A Dinner to Die For is one of the Cherringham mystery series. This one was the first I read, but not the first in the series, which actually starts with some short stories. The mystery features Sarah, an IT specialist, and her sidekick who is a retired police officer from New York. It is set in a small village in England, and deals with two rival restaurant owners. I guessed the perp part way through the book, but it was still a fun read with a satisfying ending.
Still reading Silent in the Sanctuary and also read a sample ebook of The Dollhouse and ordered the whole version of it (used) straightaway. Looking forward to its arrival in a few days.
>80 AlisonY: I haven’t read it either. I really need to fix that—and I know the Library usually has an ebook available. They must have gotten a ton of licenses for that one.
I also have a copy of that book on my shelves. I like Kate Atkinson so I really should get that book read.
The next book off my shelf to read is I know why the caged bird sings by Maya Angelou
I finished The Number One Chinese Restaurant. Can't say that I liked it, although maybe it would be better in print. The reader of the audio book gave the women creepy Dragon Lady voices. It was almost like a Chinese mafia story.
Also finished The Summer Guest, which was somewhat disappointing. Is anyone else tired of the double plot wherein a writer/descendant of a writer/student scholar finds a lost/forgotten/hidden/overlooked manuscript by a famous author?
I started two new ones, Lighthousekeeping by Jeannette Winterson and Mr. Flood's Last Resort by Jess Kidd.
I've recently finished Herding Cats, a delightful collection of cartoons by Sarah Anderson; Find Me by Laura Ven den Berg, which was well-written but not really the book I wanted it to be; and The Fortune of War by Patrick O'Brian, one of my favorites so far of his Aubrey-Maturin series.
I'm now reading Neutrino Hunters by Ray Jayawardhana. Next up, after having it sitting on my shelves staring balefully at me for many, many years, I'm finally going to start Stephen King's Dark Tower series with The Gunslinger.
I finished Lincoln in the Bardo and I wonder why it won the Booker Prize? Surely the committee could have found a novel that was entertaining as well as engaging. Those are two qualities that I don’t think this novel possessed. I guess it wasn’t a total loss as I did manage to finish it.
>100 benitastrnad: I loved Lincoln in the Bardo and thought it was very deserving of the Booker! I thought it had an innovative form and huge emotional impact which is often tough to combine.
I'm finishing up An Artist of the Floating World which is excellent. Then I'm not sure, but maybe Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively and A Brave Vessel which I checked out from the library because we are about to go to Bermuda on vacation and part of this nonfiction book is set there.
Also starting my foray into poetry with She Walks in Beauty. Although, I'm trying to separate poetry from my novel-reading life in my mind. The record-keeper in me will freak out otherwise, as I'm finding it more satisfying to skip around and not read every poem.
Same here - I loved Lincoln in the Bardo. I found it very unique without being gimmicky.
I've just finished An Artist of the Floating World by Kazuo Ishiguro which, as often with Ishiguro, left me with more questions than answers. I like that, though, and his writing is beautiful.
Now I'm on to Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively which I'm loving so far. I'll also start a nonfiction book, Brave Vessel which I picked because it has a section about the early American colonists' time on the island of Bermuda and we're about to go on a cruise there.
I loved Moon Tiger. I think it is one of my favorite books ever.
I started Soldier's Heart: Reading Literature Through Peace and War at West Point today by Elizabeth D. Samet.
I started Mourir sous ton ciel (To die under your sky, original Spanish title Morir bajo tu cielo), by Juan Manuel de Prada
I've hesitantly started Into the Water by Paula Hawkins, which has a lot of poor reviews (and indeed was passed on to me by a friend who gave up partway through as she couldn't make head nor tail of it). Having said that, I quite happily read the first 40 pages in bed last night, so I'm not being put off by the naysayers just yet.
Reading Death of a Witch by Beaton, part of the Hamish Macbeth series.
I finished my 13th book in the National Geographic Directions travel series, Sicilian Odyssey by Francine Prose. Each title in the series is about a place where the author lives or where the author has some kind of connection. They are short - all of them are under 200 pages. This is not the best in the series, but it was short enough that I finished it.
Just finished Death of a Witch a Hamish Macbeth mystery. He solves four murders in this book, in his usual slow and methodical manner. Hamish also contends with several ladies vying for his affection. The last few chapters after solving the murder are hilarious vignettes of their own, well worth the read. 4.5 stars
I finished my summer reading project book. This was Seeing in the Dark: How Backyard Stargazers are Probing Deep Space and Guarding Earth From Interplanetary Peril by Timothy Ferris. This was a great book about amateur astronomers and what they are doing to help the professionals learn more about our universe. This book was written in 2002 but it didn't seem that dated and it was written in very understandable way. Even when he was talking about galaxies that are 100,000 light years away from Earth. Topics ranged from looking at the Moon to what it means when light is one billion years old. Great stuff in here for anybody interested in the night sky.
Just finished reading all ten (!) of Helene Tursten's Inspector Irene Huss series of Swedish police procedurals. Not my favourite crime novels ever, but competently done, reasonably free of the worst clichés of the genre, and all-round good light reading for summer train journeys.
Now back to something more serious (perhaps...)
I'm less than 30 pages away from finishing the suspense horror short story collection Zoo that I read in Japanese.
I finished Into the Water (and feel the literary world has been a little harsh on Paula Hawkins).
Moving on now to Beside the Sea by Veronique Olmi. This is my second read from Peirene Press, who publish short translated novellas from successful European writers who generally have not found literary fame outside of their own country. They take a very interesting and fresh approach to publishing - worth a look at if you've not heard of them before.
Just a read a short little novella En beaute by Hoon Kim. A little taste of something but nothing to fawn over.
Still reading the book on Scandinavian Crime Fiction, and Bodies of Light by Sarah Moss, a story of a Victorian family.
I am already behind in my reviews by 4 books....
Just finished Friendship Cake and almost done with One More Time Just for the Fun of It! by Effie Leland Wilder. I have one more day of our vacation left, and my Kindle e-reader seems to have decided that it cannot find my library or my downloaded books. Yikes! I brought it along so as not to run out of books!
I gave up on Mourir sous ton ciel and started The silver metal Lover by Tanith Lee.
I finished another short one, Aki Shimazaki's Azami, but not before beef sauce spilled in my bag on the way home from the grocery store and drenched my book. I'm quite upset since now I have to throw the book away due to damage.
I am reading another in the series of SF Masterworks Bring the Jubilee by Ward Moore
finished The Gospel According to Luke and the two books from >105 dchaikin: (The General in His Labyrinth, and, on audio Metamorphica). I've picked up Flannery O'Connor's collected stories again, and this time I'm really enjoying them, and, on audio, I've sort of stumbled into Can't Stop Won't Stop, a 20-hour history of hip-hop and the culture behind it. Also, I'm about to start The Gospel According to John.
Since I last checked in here, I've read No One Can Pronounce My Name by Rakesh Satyal, a pretty good novel about Indian immigrants in Cleveland; The Children's Blizzard by David Laskin, a non-fictional account of a killer Great Plains snowstorm in the 19th century; and Explosive Eighteen which (finally!) was the last of Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum novels on my TBR shelves.
I'm now reading a (very short) ER book, Edge of the Known Bus Line by James R. Gapinski. Not sure how I feel about that one yet. Next up should be Just Kids by Patti Smith.
I finished listening to War Storm by Victoria Aveyard. This one was so good that I went to the public library and got the book so I could listen while driving and read it at other times. For that reason I finished this 650 page book in a very short amount of time. Great excitement and good plot. If you like dystopian YA read this series!
I just finished Dear Mrs. Bird, a novel about a young woman in London during the air raids of World War II. I really enjoyed this novel and its commentary about the role of women's magazines during the war, as well as the general effect of the bombings on everyday life in London. 5 stars
I just started A Place for Us, which has gotten a lot of positive buzz. So far, it's good.
I just finished Ernest Hemingway: A Life from Beginning to End. I like the Hourly History books, because they are short and concise. They may not be terrifically scholarly, but give a good overview of the person's life. If I want to read more, I will find a book that addresses the topic in more detail. I am now reading Quarrelsome Quartz in the cozy Corgis mystery series.
Finishing up Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata and also getting near the end of Scandinavian Crime Fiction (I have to be in the mood for litcrit), about to start a new crime novel from the TBR pile (but which one?!). Saving the latest Val McDermid for some upcoming lakeside reading.
For nonfiction, the latest collection of pieces by Rebecca Solnit is coming on vacation, unless I take Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World (it might take longer than the four days I have at the lake.
I managed to finish my last book for the 75er's Nonfiction challenge for August. It was books of essays. I finished the book on the last night of August before I shut my eyes and went to sleep. Lasso the Wind: Away to the New West by Timothy Egan. This is a sizable book of essays (268 pages - not including bibliography and index) that is a series of essays written by Egan when he was the New York Times bureau chief for the Western U. S. based in Seattle. It was published in 1998 and so many of the population figures that Egan cites are now out-of-date, but even so they get the point across as many of the cities, Las Vegas, Denver, Phoenix, have only grown and grown, and grown, ... It is clear that Egan is one of those tree-hugging liberal conservationists, so this is not a book for people who are pro-development. The essays are part conservation, part history, and part political - probably what essays should be. They are all placed in all 11 states of the West that are beyond the 100th Meridian. I think this book is important reading for anybody who lives in these areas and for people who are trying to gain an understanding of some of the political positions of both sides of many debates that are taking place all across the U. S. today. Even though this book is 20 years old the roots of many a immediate modern issue are dealt with in these essays. Subjects range from the reintroduction of wolves and bison to Yellowstone, to the appearance of the London Bridge in Lake Havasue City, Arizona, to the influx of Mexican migrants in the Yakima Valley of Washington. At times the author is scathing and at times he is crying, as he is when he writes about the disappearance of trout from the rivers and lake of his home state of Idaho, due to climate change.
I got this book from our library and I found so much food for thought in it that I purchased a used copy to keep in my home library.
I am now starting on a book about the pilgrimage to Santiago De Compostela. Road to Santiago by Kathryn Harrison is part of the National Geographic Directions series and I am reading it for my personal challenge to read all 25 books in this series (this one will be #14) and for the 75'ers Nonfiction challenge for September, which is books about religion and religious journeys.
I decided I needed to read some fun and short books to celebrate Labor Day weekend. I have quite a few "little books" that measure four or five inches square. Most of them were gifts. They are great fun to read, so here are the ones I read, in addition to a few kids' books.
Smitten with Kittens
Diana, the People's Princess by Donnelly
Diana, The Life of a Princess
Wonderful Alexander and the Catwings
I just finished a wonderful book, A Place for Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza. I think the title is somewhat misleading as this is much more than the usual story of an immigrant family trying to adjust from life in America. It's the story of an Indian Muslim family living in California that deals with many of the same conflicts as other families. Beautifully written in four parts, each one told from the point of view of one family member. If you're not a fan of Sarah Jessica Parker--and I am not--don't be put off by the fact that this is the first book chosen for her new imprint. A five-star read.
And I am about to start Pat Barker's latest, The Silence of the Girls, which is quite a departure from her usual topics.
I just finished Full House by Maeve Binchy. This is a fun re-read for me. The story tells of how an Irish couple devises a plan to get their adult kids to move out of their house and get out on their own. 5 stars
I am currently reading a NetGalley book The Fashion Designer. I feel as if I came into this book in the middle of things, but will persist now that I have a better handle on the storyline. I did not read the first in the series, so that put me at a disadvantage. I think the author should have done a better job of introducing the story, or else just combined the two into one book. I was totally confused until I got several chapters into the book.
I am 40 pages away from finishing 14歳の水平線 which I would translate as "14 on the Horizon", a marvelous coming of age story that I have been enamored with. I am happy to be finishing it as I have just been loving the characters and want to see it all come together.
Finished two novels that I’ve had on the go for longer than usual: Balzac’s Illusions perdues (which I really enjoyed) and Elif Şafak’s The gaze (the third of her books I’ve been a bit so-so about, but it was a book-club choice). And picked up yet another Maigret, La maison du juge, set in the Vendée where I’ve just been on holiday. (I’m sure Quatre-vingt treize is wonderful too, but this is a lot thinner...)
I finished something. On Audio, I finished Chasing Hillary, by Amy Chozick, a NY Times reporter trailing the Clinton campaign. I have a lot of thoughts about it - and all kind of difficult. And, I read the Acts of the Apostles. Notes coming soon. My current reading is focusing on finishing the Bolivar biography by Marie Arana, and, on audio, Can't Stop, Won't Stop, a 20-hour history of Hip Hop, by Jeff Chang.
Just finished Bookstore Cats and still reading some NetGalley books.
Just had a nostalgic re-read of the 1967 classic Penguin Modern Poets 10: The Mersey sound (sadly I lost my original copy, if I ever had one, so I had to make do with the 50th anniversary reprint). Still fun!
Meanwhile, I'm reading Javier Cercas's most recent novel (at least it was when I added it to the TBR: he's probably had time to write another two or three since then) El monarca de las sombras. Very good so far. And on my e-reader I've started Martin Hendriksma's "biography" of the river Rhine, De Rijn. Biografie van een rivier.
The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker was just wonderful. It's set in the Greek camp in the last month's of the Trojan War and is told from the viewpoint of Briseis, a Trojan queen who was given as a prize to Achilles. Barker is a master at depicting the effects of war, as she did in her Regeneration and Life Class series which focus on the two world wars.
I just started reading Meet Me at the Museum--quite a shift in mood.
>168 Cariola: I very much want to read this. My library doesn't have the kindle version yet, but I might go out of my norm and buy this one.
I started a longer project this last week. Apostle: Travels Among the Tombs of the Twelve by Tom Bissell is a book I am reading for the Non-Fiction themed read-along over on the 75'er's group. This one is quite academic and what I wanted was a book about a sort of pilgrimage. This isn't what I thought it was, but none-the-less, it is interesting.
Not only finished another book but finished another book in Japanese. I'm having such a good reading year! Finished reading Sumino Yoru's また、同じ夢を見ていた (I had that dream again) which I ended up enjoying even when I figured out the "twist" of the book about a third of the way through.
We are back from vacation and it's been tough getting back to our normal habits.
I'm currently reading the last Rebecca Solnit collection of essays, Call Them By Their True Names: American Crises (and Essays), and started Nicola Barker's The Cauliflower.
At bedtime its K. O. Dahl's The Fourth Man (a Norwegian crime novel)
Also reading (along with everything else), Strange Pilgrims : Twelve Stories, the next book on my list by Gabriel García Márquez.
That book of essays by Rebecca Solnit is on the National Book Award Non-Fiction Long List for 2018. It should be good reading.
I'm setting aside all reading to read Lethal White, Robert Galbraith's (J.K. Rowling) latest installment in her Cormoran Strike mystery series which just came out.
I never buy these but wait my turn in long, long library lines. Well, I've figured out that if you "recommend" a title before they purchase it you go to the head of the line. I think I recommended they purchase Lethal White the day the pre-order date came up and it worked!!
Finished two books and started two others yesterday.
I finished Strange Pilgrims, a 1992 collection of 12 short stories of Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and the audiobook version of Can't Stop Won't Stop, an (incomplete?) cultural history of Hip-Hop (fun, but flawed).
So now I've started Of Love and Other Demons, a 1994 novel by Marquez, and an audiobook version of The Triumph of Christianity, a 2018 take by Bart D. Ehrman. Also, preparing to start Romans.
>181 AlisonY: Yay! Alison, I'm so glad you picked up Multitudes. I enjoyed it so much.
>183 japaul22: I picked up my copy from the library yesterday. As soon as my son leaves for a friend's house and my husband leaves to play golf with my father, I'm digging in.
In addition to Lethal White, I'm also reading The House of Broken Angels by Luis Alberto Urea, which is so well written. I'm really enjoying it.
This topic was continued by *** What Are You Reading Now? - Part 5.
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