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Member: jbleil

CollectionsKindle (56), Your library (295), Wishlist (4), Read but unowned (45), Favorites (9), All collections (302)

Reviews21 reviews

TagsFiction (180), Nonfiction (87), Memoir (20), Classic (11), Contemporary (8), History (6), Children's (5), Reference (4), Mystery (2), Biography (2) — see all tags

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About meI am a lifelong reader who worked for more than 20 years in library administration (however, not as a librarian), which afforded me the opportunity to get my hands on books every single day. Since leaving library employment, I've discovered the joys of book ownership, although I'm determined not to let books overtake my house. They must earn a place on my bookshelves by being something I will read again, by being a classic book, or by being something I know I will pass on to friends or family. All else is eventually donated to the public library for its annual book sale.

I recently retired after 12 years as executive director of a very small (3 person) public access television station to spend more time with my husband, my children and grandchildren, reading, and learning more about photography.

About my libraryMy library is fairly evenly divided between fiction and nonfiction, with a scattering of children's books. I mostly enjoy contemporary and literary fiction, with mysteries thrown into the mix from time to time for relaxation and to clear my head after I've read something intense. I also enjoy historical fiction and nonfiction as well as biographies and memoirs. I recently rediscovered the gothic genre. I enjoy talking about books with my two daughters and daughter-in-law and have influenced, and been influenced by, their tastes. I am enjoying very much helping to introduce my three granddaughters to reading and am very much a "book" grandma, starting with cloth and board books and moving on up. I received a Kindle as a retirement gift and am now dividing my reading between books I know I will want to keep and books that for other reasons I can read on the Kindle. It's a work in progress.

GroupsClub Read 2009, Club Read 2010, Club Read 2011, What Are You Reading Now?

Favorite authorsLouisa May Alcott, Margaret Atwood, Bill Bryson, John Irving, L.M. Montgomery (Shared favorites)

Real nameJeanne

LocationErie, PA

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs (profile) (library)

Member sinceJan 29, 2009

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I saw your post in What Are You Reading that you'll be reading [Unaccustomed Earth] for your September book club. My book club is doing the same thing at the same time. I had to look up your profile to see if you were someone from my group, but we're thousands of miles apart. Kind of a strange coincidence. I wish like you I could enjoy teaching my grandson the love of books, but so far he's much too consumed with the love of video games. I keep trying.
Thanks for your thoughtful comments on the book, Jeanne. Sorry for the delayed response. I had jury duty (uneventful)yesterday.

I agree with all your comments, except that, for me, it had that driving narrative, i.e. I didn't want to stop reading. Like you, that (a driving narrative) is a quality of most if not all of my favorites. I haven't read The Help or Anna Quindlen's newest, but I'd include The Book Thief in that group. Also Pride and Prejudice (which this one reminds me of in some ways regarding the class conflicts) and Kafka on the Shore (no similarities I can think of!), among others.

What drove the narrative for me? I did find Major Pettigrew mighty engaging, a man of integrity among so many shallow and easily deluded or misguided people, old-fashioned but comfortable with that. And I was quite taken by Jasmina and their relationship with each other. I'm often a pushover for romances that overcome obstacles, particularly obstacles of class and race. I also liked the Major's willingness to take on both Roger and Jasmina's nephew with unyielding principles but affection. As you say, Roger, who grievously "lacked poetry", as the Major put it, seemed to come around some, and surely the nephew did, too. And I liked the fact that the nephew's paramour came around only so far and no more. And so on. Calm and sensible Grace, and the Major's friend who lacked the bigotry of so many of the others, and on and on.

As you can tell, I just thought it was really well done, and the conclusion was satisfying. Quite remarkable that this author's done so well with her first book, and I suppose that's part of the excitement for me, too. How great it is when a talented new writer appears on the scene!

Best wishes - Joe
How did you like Major Pettigrew's Last Stand, Jeanne? It's been my favorite so far this year.

Best wishes - Joe
Hello Mother!
I have joined Library Thing!
I use to live nearby - I lived in Conneaut so the Barnes and Noble in Erie, PA was my favorite place to shop!!
I love your view on keeping books that you would pass on. I work at a school as the account administrator and just love the interaction I have with other staff and teachers. I am constantly recommending books and loaning my books to them. I was able to help with the School Book Fair this year and loved it. I have been able to help influence the librarian on authors that I think are great.
Teaching your grandchildren the importance of reading is such a wonderful thing!

I just finished two books this weekend and enjoyed both of them - "Same Kind of Different as Me" and " Traveling with Pomegranates". I don't think you would be disappointed if you haven't read either one of them yet.

Jeanne! Many congratulations on your impending re-tire-ment. Meg Langslow and company will help ease your transition by making you laugh while reading each of the books.

Also really really liked your review of "What the Dead Know."

Looks like we have very similar taste in books. Let me know if you ever find any books you just love, I always need recommendations.

Noticed you liked Lovely Bones, and I was wondering if you'd be interested in reviewing my new novel and posting your comments here, as well as a few other book-related sites. Thought you might like my book since it also contains a young female narrator struggling with a series of tragic circumstances. I could e-mail you the novel in an e-book format if you'd like (I'm out of physical copies at the moment). Here's a link to a summary (and a sample chapter) in case you'd like to read more about the book before you commit:


Portland is one of the places on the list for us to go and visit. My husband, son, and myself are avid book collectors. My daughter has growing interest. Everytime we travel we are all on the lookout for new and used bookstores. We enjoyed Powells and also found a few other unique little bookstores near Lake Geneva which is where we were for vacation in WI. Very pretty area.

I must say I find it interesting you live in Erie as I know that area very well. My in-laws do not live far from there.

We stop at the Barnes and Noble there any time we are in the area.

Investory - Kim
Thanks for your post on my LT home page. It is great to share a similar appreciation for John Irving's works. I agree with you that some of his later books don't measure up to the former.

And, welcome to LT 2009 challenge group. We are a lively, friendly, well-read bunch.

Hello Jbleil

I saw your post on Alcottacre's thread and note that you, like me, consider A Prayer for Owen Meany as one of your favorites.

It truly is an wonderful book!
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