vancouverdeb reading for 2017 Thread #2
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1) Tooth and Nail by Ian Rankin ( Scotland) 4 stars
2) Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson (UK) 4 stars
3)He Wants by Alison Moore (UK) 4.5 stars
4)Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones ( New Zealand) 3.8 stars
5)Great Expectations by Charles Dickens (UK) 4.5 stars
6) Dragon Springs Road: A Novel by Janie Chang (CDN) 4.5 stars
7)Here Comes the Sun by Nicole Dennis-Benn ( Jamaica) 4 stars
8)A Dangerous Place by Jacqueline Winspear (UK) 4.25 stars
9) Journey to Munich by Jacqueline Winspear (UK) 4.5 stars
10)The Mistletoe Murder: And Other Stories by P. D. James (UK) 4 stars
11)The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence ( Canada) 4.5 stars
12)The Woman Next Door by Yewande Omotoso (Barbados) 3.8 stars
13)In This Grave Hour by Jacqueline Winspear (UK) 4.1 stars
authors origin / nationality
New Zealand 1
where the stories took place :
New Zealand 1
Male Authors 4
Female authors 9
Currently reading Dragon Springs Road by Janie Chang. She is a Canadian author, who was born in Taiwan and now makes her residence here in Vancouver. I had heard good things about her first book, Three Souls, so I thought I'd give this book a try. I'm enjoying it so much I've ordered her first book, Three Souls.
Starred!! I will come back to see what you post above. It isn't filled in yet....!
>7 vancouverdeb: Hi Kim! Thanks for dropping the star! Just filling in my new thread.
>8 Berly: Hi Monica! Thanks for dropping a star and stopping by!
Can you guys see my image in the first post? It is a " gif" rather than a "jpg" and I can see, but I think " gif"s can be more particular? Let me know if you can see it. Thanks!
>11 MGovers: Thanks Monica! I wasn't sure. I appreciate your feedback!
>13 Berly: Delighted that you can see it, Kim! :) Okay, I guess my image works okay !
Beautiful picture/gif. Works fine. O, boy to be such a fast reader, and the dog so quiet. You could do a lot of reading resting a while on your walks with Poppy :)
Very impressive topper, Deb. Great day for staying home and setting up a new thread! How is the snow out your way? The plow actually made it to our parking lot today! I am hoping that a lot of the snow will just melt. It is heavy enough. I was walking past the treed area in the middle of our complex when there was a crashing, crunching noise and one of the fir trees lost its top half - now that's heavy snow! Probably falling branches were the reason why our power went off for a few minutes tonight.
Happy new one, Deb. What a lovely topper. We have to wait at least another month or two to sit outside.
Happy new thread Deb!
I can just see you in that hat @ >1 vancouverdeb:!
Love the topper - although I don't recognise it. Hope your book is treating for you well.
Happy new thread, Deborah. I love the topper. I can't wait to hear your comments on Dragon Springs Road - I'm always looking for new authors.
Happy new thread, Deborah, and thanks to having had a daughter in the age of Disney on VHS/DVD, recognize the topper as from One Hundred and One Dalmations. She and I love that movie.
Happy New Thread, my friend. I love love love your topper! And am delighted you are enjoying Dragon Springs Road so much that you've ordered another by Chang. Bodes well!
Happy new one, Deborah! I love your topper - one of my all time favorite books, and I also love the movie. Hoping your Sunday is full of fabulous!
Happy New Thread, Deb. Love the topper. Hope you are having a relaxing Sunday.
Happy new thread, Deborah!
Lovely topper, a book and a dog, always good :-)
Blink and I'm 29 behind! Wonderful new thread! Stay warm in this crazy weather.
>15 ctpress: I thought that too, Carsten, wouldn't it be lovely to be able to read as fast as Anita from 101 Dalmatians is doing in the GIF? Or to have Poppy sit for a long time?
>16 Familyhistorian: We got a LOT of snow this time round, Meg and no signs of it abating as yet. It's currently just a light snow right now and someone in on the strata council forgot to renew our snow removal people, so it is quite a mess . People have been shovelling, but it is difficult to keep up with heavy snow that turns to slush , rains a bit, freezes, snows some more. I'll sure be glad when we are rid of it!
>17 Ameise1: I'm sure I'll be waiting another month or two before I can sit outside on a bench too, Barbara. Just dreaming a little bit :)
>18 PaulCranswick: I have that hat, Paul . How'd you guess! Actually I don't think I even own a toque. We so rarely get snow , but this year....
>19 ChelleBearss: Thanks Chelle. I think we are stuck with the snow for another 5 days or so, according the forecast. But we'll see I guess. Not my cup of tea!
>20 jessibud2: Thanks Shelley! I thought it was cute too. And right now with the snow outside, it is nice to see some green.
>21 jnwelch: Thanks Joe!
>22 charl08: It's from the movie version of 101 Dalmations by Dodie Smith , well, it's the Disney version. I recall it was a movie that we saw in the gym at school at the end of grade 1 or 2 and the entire school sat on the gym floor to watch it for a special treat. Makes me think I need to see it again. I thought Cruellla was horribly scary at the time! :)
>23 scaifea: Thanks Amber!
>24 BLBera: I'm really enjoying Dragon Springs Road, Beth. So glad I picked it up at the library!
>25 karenmarie: Karen, I feel a need to see 101 Dalmations again, after looking at the gif. I'll have to ask my sister if she has a copy I can borrow. She loves Disney movies.
>26 lit_chick: Thanks Nancy! Wouldn't it be nice to see some daffodils? We were on the verge of that prior to our snowfall . Yes, I am really enjoying Dragon Springs Road . It is really fascinating. I think you would enjoy it.
>27 Crazymamie: Thank Mamie! I love the movie too, but it's been a long time since I've watched it. Not a bad Sunday, but if the snow would just melt and go away! :)
>28 msf59: Happy Sunday to you, Mark!
>29 FAMeulstee: Thanks Anita! I agree - a book , a dog - all good :)
>30 mdoris: How is the snow in the neck of your woods, Mary? Or did you get missed this time round?
>31 drneutron: Thanks Jim!
>32 johnsimpson: Thanks John! I hope that Karen is feeling better. Love and hugs to both of you!
>33 vancouverdeb: That sounds like what we had to cope with for our last snowfall, Deb. It is very frustrating. I didn't move my car for about a week until the plow came. Last time once I got my car going, I parked it inside at work so that it could thaw and I would be able to use my windshield wipers. This time I have cleared the snow off my vehicle four times so far. Unfortunately, they are calling for more snow tonight and tomorrow. What happened to the one day of snow and then rain to wash it away that we used to get?
>38 Familyhistorian: - Heehee. I can tell you aren't used to snow. Here, whenever it seems like we might be getting snow, you can walk by a parking lot (at the school where I used to teach, for example), and be forgiven if you thought aliens had landed. Most car would have their windshield wipers pulled up and out at 90 degree angles, so as not to freeze to the car in the down position. Imagine an entire parking lot of cars like that! It's a funny sight! And not the least bit odd here, in such weather! ;-)
>38 Familyhistorian: I know, Meg. It is dreadful! I've actually not gone out since Friday, since I went foraging for food. I couldn't see the lines on the road, due to the snow. It was falling very heavily and I don't think the City had properly anticipated the snowfall. I considered purchasing boots this November / December , but I did not. Next year maybe I will get some boots. My husband has been working every day since Friday and will also work on Monday. He copes with the snow much better than I do.
>39 jessibud2: So true, Shelley, we aren't used to the snow. The city does not have the snow plows and equipment needed etc. Even our Sky Train Rapid Transit comes to a halt, as do some of the bridges, due the heavy volume of snow. Buses can't make it up and down hills. At least the part of Vancouver where I live, there are not many hills.
>39 jessibud2: I have seen people do the windshield wiper thing here too, Shelley. Mostly, I put cardboard on my windshield and put the wipers on top of it so they won't freeze to the windshield. Where I used to live I had a carport so the car wasn't open to the elements at all times. Now my poor car is always outside.
>40 vancouverdeb: I was lucky, Deb. I had some winter boots already from years ago when we used to get snow. I just wish they were also waterproof for those slushy days. I can't become snowbound. I don't have the option to stay home. *sigh*
>37 vancouverdeb: Hi Deborah, yes we are in snow drifts. It is bright and beautiful and quiet but cold and supposed to last for the week. Argh. I do have boots with waterproof bottoms so I am all set for dog walks. Like Poppy the snow balls up on Maggie. She is much perplexed by it all being a Mississippi girl!
>1 vancouverdeb: I've seen it before but I love it every time.
I'm sitting on my couch watching it continue to snow. We got a snow day today ~~ the first in about 8 years. I'm LOVING it. I do love the snow and I had a delightful walk in it this morning, but I mostly love that I needed this day to rest, rejuvenate, read, catch up on LT, and stay in comfy clothes. Oh, and I plan to read this afternoon after a couple of phone meetings (I don't really get the whole day off).
I do agree with you that the snow we get is particularly difficult to deal with. It's not like the dry powder they get in Montana or Wisconsin. This stuff is heavy!! I shoveled our front steps and walk this morning and that got my heart rate up!
Here's hoping for a safe week, in any case.
>41 Familyhistorian: I have waterproof " hiking boots." I use the term loosely because they are about the height of running shoes, but they've worked really well in the wet and walking through shallow puddles. They have a gortex membrane and are sealed and they have proved to be very good in the rain. What I really care about is a good grip on ice / frozen snow. That is difficult to get.
>42 mdoris: Hi Mary! I wonder if you have had as much snow as we have had? I think I heard there was less snow on the Island compared to here - and it is that much worse inland - like Surrey, Chilliwack, Abbotsford.
>43 EBT1002: Enjoy your snow day, Ellen! Yes, I do think that our snow is much more difficult to deal with than than the lighter stuff they get where it is really cold and has low precipitation. This is not like the stuff they get in Winnipeg, Edmonton, Toronto etc etc! :) Have an lovely snow day, Ellen!
>44 vancouverdeb: I use Yaktrax when there is ice on the streets, Deborah. Easy to add to your shoes and no problem walking on icy places.
>44 vancouverdeb: I have snowboots with great traction but they are low, better than running shows but just barely as they lace up to the ankles. They have a tendency to let snow in over the tops when it is as deep as it is now and it them two days to dry out after a slushy morning walking to the bus stop. What is really needed is boots that have the same tread as mine that come up to the knees and are waterproof. If this snowy weather becomes the new normal for us I will try to find a pair.
HI Deborah. Do you know about gaiters? They are great! They cover your pants, There's no snow in your shoes and only $19 a pair. (MEC)
My husband hikes all year in shorts, rain/snow you name it but gaiters are always in the backpack or worn.
I'm amazed at all the snow you've been getting. I hope you've been able to get out a bit.
Deborah! The snow has finally all melted here. Back to normal temperatures in the high 40's. How are you doing? Thinking you!!
>45 FAMeulstee: I'll have to look around for some Yaktrax, Anita. Do they work on non - icy pavement if I run into that while I am walking on ice and non- icey pavement? Thanks for the suggestion.
>46 Familyhistorian: Agree, Meg, I'll need to purchase proper boots if this become the new normal . I had read about two pairs of boots that actually have a little traction on ice http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/winter-boots-tested-ice-1.3867531 . Next year I'll start looking around early in the year. I think ( crosses fingers) that we are finished with the snow for this year.
>47 mdoris: I'd never heard of gaitors, Mary, for thanks for that suggestion too. Another great idea!
>48 karenmarie: Karen , at last we seem to have the snow behind in the lower mainland. It is still out there in the back garden and here and there, but the rain has arrived and the temps are up to about 45 F / but still 35 or so at night, but there is a warming trend. Back to normal , at last!
>49 Berly: Thanks Kim, yes , life is back to normal with our fabulous rain and even some sunny skies! :) We are back to temps in the 40's as the cold weather moves on out ! So glad of that!
Sounds like your snow has disappeared more quickly than ours has, Deb. I can't wait to see the end of this wintery stuff!
Happy Saturday, Deb! I heard you are getting rain instead of snow. Good, right?
Hope those current reads are treating you well.
Hey Deborah! I'm way past the point of wishing you a happy thread, BUT i'll do it anyway. Happy new thread!
I'm sorry to read you're snookered in snow! I feel for ya, that's usually us but this year quite mild. Hang in their, spring is in sight.
Hi Deb, hope you and the family are having a good weekend my dear, sending love and hugs.
>52 Familyhistorian: I don't blame you Meg! I am sure glad that our snow has gone! We still have piles here and there on the ground that has not yet melted, but overall , roads and sidewalks are nice and clear. I hope your area is soon clear of the snow and ice.
>53 Ameise1: Happy Weekend, Barbara!
>54 msf59: Yes Mark, we have rain instead of snow , and right now it is even sunny out! I have finished Dragon Springs Road and it ws an excellent read!
>55 karenmarie: Thanks Karen! Happy Weekend to you too!
>56 Carmenere: No worries, Lynda! It's never too late to wish someone a happy new thread. Thank goodness we are now snow free as per usual! Life is back to normal! Yes, fingers crossed, spring is in sight. Usually I consider February to be spring! I follow the weather rather than the calender :) And the days are most definitely longer which is a huge plus!
>57 johnsimpson: Not bad at all, John! As usual, it's a long weekend in my province, but Dave is working, so it's me and Poppy for the long weekend! : )
Dragon Springs Road by Janie Chang is a wonderful, captivating read. It's the story of a young seven year old girl, Jialing, who is left abandoned by her mother in a large estate. The story takes place in the early 1900's in Shanghai, against the backdrop of the crumbling Imperial Dynasty and political unrest. Young Jialing is of mixed race , Eurasian, or " zazhong", the shameful word of that day. To be "zazhong " is to be regarded with much contempt and shame, as most zazhong are the product of prostitution of a Chinese woman and a European male. Jialing's prospects in life are frighteningly low.
A kindly family moves into the estate, and the family Matriarch, Grandmother Yang , takes seven year old Jialing into the household as a bond- servant. Though Jialing is well treated by Grandma Yang and her granddaughter Anjuin, Jialing is treated with disdain and jealousy by the other servants, as well as First Wife and Third Wife. Jialing has friend in Anjuin, but Anjuin is already arranged to be married, so Jialing knows her time in the household will be limited. A missionary is willing to take on Jialing for education, a rare thing for any young Chinese girl of that era, but Jialing knows once again that any opportunity of employment will be scarce, due to her being of mixed race.
Jialing proves to be a strong willed person, as she searches for a stable future , as well for her mother and her origins.
Dragon Springs Road is a fascinating coming of age story, richly atmospheric and full of intriguing, well drawn characters. I really enjoyed being immersed into the culture and politics of early 1900's China .
4.5 stars. I was swept away by this enthralling story.
>60 vancouverdeb: - I was just looking at this the other day when I was browsing at Chapters. Looks very good
>60 vancouverdeb: Sounds like a great read. I shall have to have a look for it here. I love the cover. I'd decorate my house in that colour if I was a bit braver.
Awake with a bit of insomnia, so I'm going to visit the threads a bit
>62 jessibud2: Shelley, Dragon Springs Road was excellent and you'd be supporting a Canadian author in the process! :) I plan to read her first book, Three Souls later on this year.
>63 charl08: Charlotte, if you can it in the UK, do read Dragon Springs Road. I loved the cover too , and the book is every bit as a good as the cover - maybe even better :)
Hi Deborah! Dragon Springs Road is a BB. It sounds great!
Adrian sends Valentine wishes to Poppy. It's not his favorite February holiday, though. That would be Groundhog Day! ;-)
>65 cbl_tn: Dragon Springs Road was a fabulous read, Carrie. Not too heavy , just right and a page turner at that.
Poppy sends Valentines wishes to Adrian. Poppy has yet to communicate her favourite holiday to me. I think it might be Christmas, because she got three new stuffed toys for Christmas, and she is still having a lot of fun with them. Last night she and I were playing with them together. She loves tug - a - war and pretending she is wild , vicious dog with her stuffed animals. And I enjoy bringing her stuffed animals to life for her. Lots of fun! :)
>45 FAMeulstee: The Yaktrax walk a little odd on non icy pavement, Deborah, but I think that is a minor problem, as they have saved me from falling so often on the icy parts.
I hadn't used them this season until a few days ago, when we got some snow. Yesterday some more snow, but that will be gone soon as the temperatures are rising.
>61 vancouverdeb: Isn't that title a tad optimistic given your recent weather?
Have a great Sunday. xx
#60 - It does sound like a fascinating coming of age story - with the added benefit of learning about Chinese culture and history.
>66 vancouverdeb: She loves tug - a - war and pretending she is wild , vicious dog with her stuffed animals.
Oh, Adrian does that, too! He grabs a toy as soon as he gets out of his crate and gives it a good shake!
>64 vancouverdeb: - I agree, Deb. It looks as if I will have to forfeit my $10 gift card from Chapters. It was a dated one, expires today but it's still snowing heavily and I will not be going out in the car again today. I had thought to purchase Steal Away Home (touchstone wrong) which is also by a Canadian author and about a Black women who made her way to Toronto on the Underground Railroad, then carried on a 20-year correspondence with her former owner. I linked to an article about it on my thread and it really looks good. Oh well, it can wait
>67 DianaNL: Thanks Diana! And a Happy Sunday it is!
>68 FAMeulstee: Good to know about the details of the YakTrax, Anita. Thanks for that. I'll look into them for next winter. I think we are through the snow for this winter. Crosses fingers! :)
>69 PaulCranswick: Paul, not at all! Today is sunny, as was yesterday , and quite a few days before that . Most of the time on the coast, just wait a few hours and the weather has changed again.
>70 ctpress: Carsten, Dragon Springs Road is just as you describe. It was a very fascinating read !
>71 lit_chick: Thanks Nancy! Yes, I am enjoying Here Comes the Sun. I'm about 3/4 of the through or more. A very intense read .
>73 cbl_tn: Poppy ripped through the neck of one her new stuffies just a couple of days after she got it, but Dave managed to sew the neck of the reindeer back up. I have to keep an eye on Poppy for fear of her taking apart her stuffed toys and trying to eat the stuffing. She is handful and it sounds like Adrian is too. :)
>74 BLBera: Thanks Beth. I hope you enjoy Dragon Springs Road!
>75 jessibud2: I am always keen to support Canadian authors, Shelley. Sorry to hear that you are going to have to forfeit a gift certificate from Chapters. But if it snowing that badly, I can understand. I'll come and check your thread about the book you mentioned a little later. It sounds fascinating!
>78 vancouverdeb: - Well, guess what? I went, and I got the book! The roads have been plowed and I decided to just go for it. I am very happy! :-)
Made me smile: I have to keep an eye on Poppy for fear of her taking apart her stuffed toys and trying to eat the stuffing. She is handful. Aw, but you wouldn't have her any other way, Deb! You must post the photo again of her in her Burberry sweater, the argyle one. I got such a kick out of that ... sent it to all of my sisters : ).
Good idea Nancy, WE WANT A PICTURE OF POPPY in her Burberry sweater!!!
Nancy, how many sisters do you have?
Great reviews Deborah of your recent books. You certainly are a very good person to follow for ideas of Canadian books (and others too!).
>79 jessibud2: I am delighted that you got out to get the book after all, Shelley.
>80 lit_chick: Oh, I'm not sure, Nancy! I worry about Poppy getting an intestinal blockage or choking on the fluff from her stuffed toys. At least now that she is three years old, she has stopped trying to tear apart her beds. When she was younger, she'd get going on chewing on a seam on her bed and that would be the end of it. Now that she is 3 1/2 , she is cooling off a little :)
>80 lit_chick: >81 mdoris: I am so hopeless at posting picture to LT. If you go to my profile page, there are several pictures, and one of them is of Poppy in her argyle sweater. I'll try later to add a picture. But check my profile page - or whatever it is called where one's pictures area. Sorry about that!
>81 mdoris: Thanks Mary! I do read a lot of non- Canadian books, but I do try to support our authors if I can. I can't wait for the 2017 Bailey's Women's Prize long-list to be announced. I think that happens in March . It's not Canadian , but it provide an interesting list of new titles to take a look at.
Deborah do you ever follow the Stella prize from Australia ? I bet there are some gems there too. It a pize for fiction and non fiction books written by women. They have just announced their long list for 2017.
Just checked your photos and found Poppy in the argyle sweater. Very adorable!
Oh, got me with Dragon Springs Road. It looks like something I'd enjoy a lot.
I hope your winter weather is truly on its way out :)
>82 vancouverdeb: Oh, Poppy! I didn't realize she was at risk of harming herself the way she chews things apart. Glad she is cooling off a little at 3.5 years old. *off to your profile pics to see little Miss in her argyle sweater*
>Deb, here's an idea re preventing Poppy from eating her bed. Have you tried putting her pillow (I'm guessing it's a sort of pillow bed that she sleeps on?), into a regular pillowcase (a people's pillowcase, I mean). One you are willing to sacrifice. She won't likely find a loose thread to grab and pull and shred, on a linen pillowcase. Just a thought
>83 mdoris: I have heard of the Stella Prize, Mary, but I have not really followed it. Thanks for the link, I'll have a look at the books! I think your Maggie is just adorable as Poppy!
>84 msf59: Thumbs always appreciated it , Mark! I am quite sure that Here Comes the Sun will be to your liking or as you say " ring your bells" :)
>85 lunacat: I hope you enjoy Dragon Springs Road. I think a lot of people will enjoy it! Once again we have a sunny day , and of course the rain will return, but this would be very late in the year for us to get more snow. Fingers crossed!
>86 lit_chick: Any dog that chews stuff apart is danger from trying to eat the stuffing. Poppy is much better with her bed now. We just have to watch her stuffy toys and they come with a warning for us " Dog Parents" :) She is much better. We have seamless bed, and it's been quite a while since she tried to take it apart! :)
>87 jessibud2: Poppy's bed is bit too big to be covered in pillowcase, but it's an excellent idea, Shelley. We replaced a couple of her beds when she was of a puppy age - prior to a year old, but now we have a seam free bed, and she does seem to try to chew on her bed anymore. It's just a problem when she gets playing with her stuffy toys and decides she is really " vicious" :)
Our dogs rip apart their stuffed toys too. It's almost like the stuffing inside offends them and they prefer the toys as just fabric rags. They don't try and eat the fluff though, they just leave it all over my house for me and Chloe to pick up!
I don't have dogs these days so can't relate, but when I did have two Dobermans, they had old socks with knots in them for chew toys. (we didn't have money for dog toys and I honestly don't think there were as many on the market then as there are now.) Jet and Ruby also knew that if a sock didn't have a knot in it, it was Not a Toy. Somehow my boyfriend Mark taught that lesson well, because they never chewed anything that wasn't a knotted sock. (They did carry my dress shoes through the house, but never damaged them.)
Hi Deb! I am joining the others in saying that your review of Dragon Springs Road is compelling. I love your commitment to Canadian authors; I have learned about several that I don't know that I would otherwise have heard about.
After all that wet snow we got, it's now acting more springlike. Yesterday was sunny and 55F (although I was stuck in bed all day with this nasty cold) and today it's cloudy but still pretty warm. I'm home again, propped up in bed with a cat and a laptop (she hates the laptop as it interferes with her snuggling and getting petted). I do plan to read some, too, but mostly I'm sitting here wishing I could breathe.
Hey Deborah. My aunt's (otherwise lovely) dog has a thing for toes and socks. It's a bit awkward to eat at the dinner table when you are the object of Henry's affection. He's lovely otherwise despite the chewing.
>90 ChelleBearss: That's interesting that your dogs don't try to eat the stuffing of the toys, Chelle. If Poppy decides a toy needs a proper chewing, hitting the stuffing is like hitting the jackpot for her. Poppy has some of her toys that she has decided are only for licking and she never chews those. Dogs are hard to understand at times! :)
>91 karenmarie: That is quite amazing, Karen, that two dogs knew not to chew anything but knotted socks! Poppy is getting much better now that she has achieved the age of 3 1/2.
>92 EBT1002: Thanks Ellen! I hope you enjoy Dragon Springs Road is you decide to pick it up. Sorry to hear that you have a nasty cold. I hope you are soon on the mend.Today it is overcast but bright out, but we are not to 55 F as yet. There is a rainfall warning posted for later today.
>93 charl08: Oh dear, Charlotte! Your aunt's dog chews feet and toes? That is quite cute, but I suspect it would get to one to have that happen. Poppy used to love to sneak into the laundry room and grab a pair of old sock or underwear and rush and hide and try to give them a chew, but she seems to be okay with that now. I can actually leave the laundry room door open without fear :)
Daisy just tries to destroy any toy that she is given so they can never be left out for her to play with unless they are very, very tough. She just has a real love of chewing. Luckily she is also quite well behaved so she (usually) recognises which things are allowed to be chewed and which are not. We had an incident the week before last when she ate our exchange student's slippers: they were felted and rather like that fluffy stuff on tennis balls which she really likes.
When she was younger she had a good go at chewing the walls in the hall, but thank goodness she has grown out of that idea!
Loving the dog stories. Not once has Maggie chewed the stuffing out of anything, but visiting dogs have been in the house for 5 seconds, found her toys and there was fluff and stuffing everywhere, so I know what you're tallking about.
Hi Deb, I hope that you have been enjoying the sunshine the last few days. Looks like we are in for some rain now that it is the weekend.
Hi Deb, hope you are having a good start to the weekend my dear and that the weather is not too bad for you. Karen has had a pretty good day and I will post more on my thread, sending love and hugs.
Hi Deborah, you are missed! Hope that everything is OK and that you are not struggling too much with the snow.
HI Deborah, I was wondering the same thing as Charlotte. Hope all's well. Spring's coming!
Hi Deb, hope all is well with you and the family my dear and look forward to hearing from you soon, sending love and hugs.
Hi everyone! Doing fine in real life - just been busy! I'll try to find time tomorrow to visit the the threads and update mine. Dave and I are going out to my son and daughter- in laws in a hour or so, so must be off to get myself ready ! :) Thanks for caring! Son William and his wife are heading off to Iceland, Copenhagen and Amsterdam in early March, so I'm quite eager to hear all about it!
Nice to see you back on here my dear, being busy and RL takes precedence from LT, hope you have a great weekend dear lady and send love and hugs.
>106 vancouverdeb: Nice to see that your son and his wife will be doing a pretty great trip soon.
Good also to be busy but miss your energy and good cheer around the threads a little, Deb. xx
Hope you are coping with this strange weather, Deb. Will winter weather never end?
>112 Familyhistorian: - It's actually going up to 16C here in Toronto today! That's just crazy. And they said that we officially had the warmest February on record in Ontario, this year. Mind you, temps will plummet tonight and we won't see plus numbers again till the weekend. That means it will be icy because today is a rainy day, all day.
And we wonder why people get sick....
On a happy note, my crocus (and snowdrop?) shoots are about 2 inches up from the ground! I can't wait for them to bloom!
>113 jessibud2: I hope they bloom for you soon, Shelley. We touched double digits a couple of weeks ago but then the temperatures went down low enough for snow again. A lot of the snow that we get is just on the cusp so it is slop coming out of the sky, slippery, coats stuff but doesn't last long.
>95 SandDune: Rhian, Poppy is getting much better about chewing things, but still loves to chew . I'm glad that Daisy has given up chewing the walls! Poppy has a small indent/ circle in that she chewed in our kitchen by her bed, but she has left it along for years now. She is 3 1/2 already! Hard to believe at times!
>96 mdoris: Mary, I saw Maggie on your thread ! What a lovely looking dog! She looks so sweet, but I know appearances can be deceiving - as in Poppy, not Maggie!
>97 Familyhistorian: A lot of time has past, but Thursday sure seemed blustery to me . Very wet , overcast and windy! I understand there is the possiblity of a bit of snow over the weekend, but supposedly very little to none in our area . Let's hope so, Meg!
>98 johnsimpson: Life has been going quite well, John , thanks! Just got behind. I understand that Karen has been diagnosed with gallstones. I hope she can get the surgery to remove them soon! ( I do peek onto the threads here and there! :) Love and hugs to you and Karen!
>99 charl08: Charlotte, the snow is all gone!!! It's been gone for a while , though there is threat of a wee bit of snow over the weekend, but the sort that melts as it falls
>100 mdoris: Yes, Mary , spring is coming! I've seen a few brave bulbs nearly in bloom - how late in the in the spring is that? I've seen some Magnolia Tree buds near to blooming! Tulip Magnolias are my favourite tree. :)
>101 lit_chick: Hi, Nancy, I hope your trip to Halifax goes well!
>102 jessibud2: Here I am, Shelley! I'm quite keen to see who wins CBC's Canada Reads . I'm pulling for The Break by Katherena Vermette I don't even mind that " Candy Someone " who is arguing the case for The Break. I watched an introduction to the " judges" online at CBC.
>103 johnsimpson: Thanks again, John. It's nice to be missed!
>104 Familyhistorian: All is well, Meg! I've even managed to get myself a fit bit surge 2 and set it up all by myself!!! WoW! Microsoft will be hiring me at this rate - or maybe the Geek Squad! :)
>105 karenmarie: Thanks Karen! I hope all is going well in retirement 2.0!
>107 johnsimpson: We did have a lovely weekend, John. Great dinner over at my son and daughter in laws, they are planning to sell their condo and purchase a townhouse and are off on a trip to Iceland, Copenhagen and Amsterdam. Yes, every now and then RL etc just gets in the way of things.
>108 ChelleBearss: Since I am afraid to fly, I travel vicariously through my family, mainly my son and his wife:) At least I feel that Amsterdam , Copenhagen and Iceland are nice safe places to travel. Last year I was anxious about them travelling to France, Italy and less so the UK, due to the incidents that happened in Nice etc. Even so, I had to give William and Serenade " safe travelling trips" for Amsterdam , like coffee shops are really pot shops, don't take pictures of the ladies in the red light district etc and my son and his wife started to laugh at me. Such is the life of a parent, Chelle, as you know! :)
>109 charl08: Thanks Charlotte! They always have the most calorific dishes! Manicotti or something - full of fattening cheeses, garlic bread, asparagus (that was okay ) and mini doughnuts. And I took some interesting chocolates filled with things like matcha tea truffle , chai tea caramel , etc to sample, so we all got fat together.
>110 PaulCranswick: So kind that you miss me , Paul! I hope the leave taking from Malaysia is coming along . I know it is ,but slower than you'd hoped.
>111 Berly: Hi Kimmers! Thanks for stopping by!
>112 Familyhistorian: Meg, it seems to be getting better, let's just hope the weather will hold okay over the weekend.
>113 jessibud2: Double digit temps in Toronto, Shelley! Well, it's been warmer here too , but now 16 C. Maybe 11 C? or 9 C?
Back later on after midnight to catch up on my reading and your threads. Thanks for visiting, everyone! Much appreciated!
Oh that meal sounds amazing Deborah. Glad you had a good time. You have definitely been missed, but glad it was for fun reasons rather than stressful or other ones.
Happy Saturday, Deb! It looks like I have not been by in awhile. How are you? Everything okay? How are those current reads? Yes, I am brimming with questions.
Hi Deborah! RL has interrupted my LT time lately, too. Adrian had his first dental cleaning this week. I was glad that he didn't need any extractions. His appetite isn't quite back to normal yet, but otherwise all is well.
>118 vancouverdeb: coffee shops are really pot shops We went to the Netherlands when J was 7, and again the next year. I can't remember which visit it was, (probably the second one as his reading was pretty good) but he was reading the guidebook, and came out with the comment that the Dutch must really like coffee as there was a whole section about coffee shops. We had to explain that it wasn't necessarily that sort of coffee ....
Hope that you're having a wonderful weekend. The sun is shining. Hurrah!
Good to see you posting, Deb. I am in Surrey right now and the sun is shining. Don't know how long that will last. Great day for a walk if a bit chilly. I was early for my meeting and went for a walk along the Serpentine Greenway - a fancy name for a walkway under power lines!
Hi Deb my dear, nice to see you have had chance to post a bit, I hope you and the family are having a really nice weekend and send love and hugs dear lady.
>121 Ameise1: HI Barbara! I hope your ribs are healing!
>122 DianaNL: Thanks Diana! So kind of you!
>123 charl08: It was really quite a sinful dinner, but yes, we did enjoy it . Part of my absence can be explained by getting too involved in following the Trump Drama . I think I am semi - accustomed to his craziness , Charlotte. Each day, a new drama and I'm newshound! Tin foil hats all around!
>124 msf59: Hey Warbler, how's it going , other than the craft beer? :)
>125 cbl_tn: Carrie, I'm glad that Adrian is doing well after his dental cleaning. Poppy has yet to undergo a dental cleaning. Last year we asked the vet , but Poppy was just 2 1/2 and he said they don't usually do them till 3 +years of age. Now, I am not an anti vaxxer, but I've read that dogs are over vaccinated, so this year I've been uncertain about vaccinating Poppy again. She has had all of her previous shots. I could get a titre test done, but Poppy is so averse to vets, ( she will bite them if need be ) I can't quite see putting her through the trauma of taking a blood sample for the testing. So what to do? But at any rate I think we should get her teeth checked. They look good to us so far, but with small dogs, teeth are very valuable. Poppy sends healing vibes and best wished to Adrian over the dental cleaning. Poppy would definitely be outraged and a sad sack after a dental cleaning, I am certain. Even I am!
>126 karenmarie: Karen, I think you could call them a saucer magnolia, or a tulip magnolia, but a tulip tree would do too! :) Around here there are also a lot of star magnolias, and I am not that in love with them. Plain old ugly trees. :) A star magnolia is fine, of course, just not of the calibre of a tulip magnolia! :)
>127 SandDune: That is a funny story about your young J, Rhian! I would not have known myself had I not looked up " what to know when travelling to Amsterdam." I also read that you are not supposed to take pictures of the ladies in the red light windows and that " blue light " means transgender, so I apprised my son and his wife of that as well. I don't think that they knew about that, but of course my uptight son said " That will do mom ." And then he teased me ( I think ) that the Air BnB that they are staying in Amsterdam in in the midst of the red light district. Kids!
>128 alcottacre: Great to see you, Stasia!
>129 mdoris: Thanks Mary! Yes, having a nice weekend, and yes the sun has been shining! The " kids " are popping by again this evening. That will be fun - a person just can't get rid of their kids! :) My DIL needs to use some punches of mine for her kindergarten class.
>130 Familyhistorian: The sun shone all day here, Meg. What a thing - the Serpentine Greenway being a path beneath the power lines! I hope you had a good walk anyway, and that the power lines didn't interfere with your fit bit :) If it seems your tracking high - those power lines might be it! Just kidding :)
>131 johnsimpson: I hope you are having a good weekend, too, John . I had hoped to get downtown to the big " Chapters Bookstore" but I failed to that today. Perhaps tomorrow. I hope Karen is feeling alright.
>132 Berly: Lovely sunflowers, Kim! Thanks for brightening my day!
Quickly, here is what I have read . Here Comes the Sun by Nicole Dennis-Benn. The story takes place in Jamaica, and gives insight into the life of those who work at the resorts that people like us might frequent. The stories of the main characters, mom Delores, and her daughters, Margot and Thandi are quite heartbreaking. Nancy wrote an excellent review of the book, so check there for the details. It is a dark read. 4 stars
Yes, I got onto a Maisie Dobbs binge read and finished Journey to Munich, by Jacqueline Winspear. I just loved this tale of espionage , and Maisie back to England at the very start of WW11. 4. 5 stars. The next in the series, In this Grave Hour is out in mid -March 2017, and I'm waiting impatiently in the library queue . I do love the cover on this book.
I'm quite interested in the Orange/ Bailey's Women's fiction longlist, which is supposed to be announced next week. I've been checking out predictions and I believe the Booker Longlist also comes out later in March. Exciting month!
>136 vancouverdeb: It was a good walk and the power lines didn't affect my fitbit. It wasn't quite peaceful with the wires occasionally snapping overhead though. Looks like your flowers are further along than ours. We don't have any trees flowering yet. I think it is colder over here. I just hope we don't get the snow they are predicting for tomorrow.
So glad you liked Here Comes the Sun, Deborah. I still think about that one. And, hooray for Maisie Dobbs. Not too many series keep up the high quality throughout.
I'll have to look for the James stories. I've read all her novels but not any short stories.
Happy Sunday, Deborah.
Happy Sunday, Deborah!
I guess I'll still call it Dad's Tulip tree, but knowing that it's a saucer magnolia works. Thanks!
Woohoo, Deb, great reading, my friend! Glad you enjoyed Here Comes the Sun, and tickled to see you catching up with our girl, Maisie. I've requested my library to purchase the new one on audiobook, but it is still on order.
Hi, Deb! Hope you had a good weekend. I have Here Comes the Sun on the list. You know I like "dark".
I too am looking forward to the March book announcements, Deborah. I haven't been keeping up with all the new books coming out as I'm trying to read my "oldies" this year. Jaqueline is visiting our little city next month. I am definitely looking forward to hearing her speak and will try to get a few more Maisie Dobbs books listened to before then.
>142 Familyhistorian: Hi Meg! I was just teasing about the overhead wires affecting your fit bit! :) Oh to the wires snapping overhead . Must be carrying a lot of power to who knows where in Surrey or further out.
>143 BLBera: I did enjoy Here Comes the Sun, Beth, but quite a sad story. Yes, Jacqueline Winspear really does keep up a high standard of writing and character development with the Maisie Dobbs series.
>144 karenmarie: Happy Monday, Karen! I'm glad I helped solve the mystery of the tulip tree. I don't imagine it matters what you call them, as long as people understand what you mean.
>145 lit_chick: Like you, I'm still waiting for In This Grave Hour to be procured by my library, but I'm in the queue. Of course I requested the written format.On the good news front, my library has been restored to being open til 9:00 PM at night , expect on Saturdays and Sundays. I'm not sure why - all of we Richmondites complaining, I suspect. The head librarian retired - perhaps he was a thorn in the side of the City Council? I'm just not sure.
>146 PaulCranswick: Yes , Paul, I'd agree that P. D James is sorely missed. She certainly was a brilliant writer and I was reminded of that by The Mistletoe Murder. That is a small volume of excellent short stories.
>147 msf59: Oh yes, Lone Ranger, I know you like your dark books. I think you'd really enjoy Here Comes the Sun.
>148 ChelleBearss: Happy Monday , Chelle! I hope all is well in you part of the country!
>149 Donna828: Oh how wonderful to have Jacqueline Winspear speak in your city, Donna! I'm having a bit of trouble finding books I feel keen to read, so I'll be glad to be pointed in the direction of the prize books.
>150 ctpress: You have been missed, Carsten! I'm not sure about The Tenant of Wildfell Hall - I think I might be reading The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence right now, but I've yet to definitely commit to that book. I'm feeling like reading some cheerful books lately, or getting my head into a good mystery. I'll be be peeking at your thread though.
Happy to see you posting again, Deborah!
>140 vancouverdeb: Someday I will get to P.D. James....
I hope you find something good to read, Deb. Have a great day.
Bailey's Women's Fiction Longlist 2017
Stay With Me, Ayobami Adebayo
The Power, Naomi Alderman
Hag-Seed, Margaret Atwood
Little Deaths, Emma Flint
The Mare, Mary Gaitskill
The Dark Circle, Linda Grant
The Lesser Bohemians, Eimear McBride
Midwinter, Fiona Melrose
The Sport of Kings, C.E. Morgan
The Woman Next Door, Yewande Omotoso
The Lonely Hearts Hotel, Heather O’Neill
The Essex Serpent, Sarah Perry
Barkskins, Annie Proulx
First Love, Gwendoline Riley
Do Not Say We Have Nothing, Madeleine Thien
The Gustav Sonata, Rose Tremain
Hey Deborah! I'm waiting for the Bailey short list. I'm hoping I'll finally be able to get my hands on Do Not Say WE Have Nothing fingers crossed!
ETA: ooooooo! I just ordered my first two Maisie Dobbs books. 1st and 2nd in the series, of course!
Thanks for the posting the Women's list, Deb. I've read all of ONE of these: Do Not Say We Have Nothing. Want to post the list at my thread, too.
>158 msf59: Hmmm, Mark, maybe I'll get Lillian Boxfish out of the library again and give it another try.
>159 jessibud2: I read a Jest of God last year and really enjoyed it, Shelley. Now I'm past page 100 in The Stone Angel and I'm enjoying it, thought it is quite depressing. But it's really interesting . Like you I much prefer Margaret Laurence to Margaret Atwood.
>161 Familyhistorian: I've only read Do Not Say We Have Nothing, Meg. I've an idea about some of the others, but many are new to me. Stay With Me and The Woman Next Door appeal to me, off hand, but one is only available in hard cover and the other won't be released in Canada til June ( I've forgotten which is which, for the moment. There are others that interest me. but I'll get back to that later on.
>162 Carmenere: Lynda! Great that you have ordered the first two Maisie Dobbs. I hope that you will enjoy them as much as I have! I'm waiting for the next in the series to be published this month.
>163 lit_chick: I know , Nancy, I've only read one from the list too! Of course post the list on your thread. I was keen to find out what was on the list and wanted to link to the various book . I've yet to really look into all of the books.
>164 charl08: Charlotte, no I had not seen that list! Thanks for bringing it to my attention. I've read The Parcel by Anosh Irani and I fell it is worth the prize. I might yet read The Conjoined. I had it out from the library some time ago, but for some reason I dropped it after 30 pages or so . I forget why, it may have seemed to " out there " for me. I can't remember. But others on LT have enjoyed it. It's a quick read, that much I can tell you. I just was not in the " mood " for it at the time.
>160 vancouverdeb: Thanks for putting up the Longlist, Deb. I have only read the Madeleine Thien and it must be a contender.
The Women's Prize is rapidly turning into one of my favourite awards as the selections are never too off the wall and celebrate genuine quality in literature written by women.
>164 charl08: That shortlist, with synopses, does resonate, Charlotte. Those books would be impossible to find in Malaysia but my move to the UK may help me somewhat!
>138 vancouverdeb: I really need to get back to the Maisie Dobbs series. I really enjoy it.
Thanks for posting the long list. I've only read the Atwood. I couldn't get into Do Not Say We Have Nothing
Hi Deb, hope you have had a good week so far my dear and thank you for the kind message regarding Amy. Amy has been busy today sorting things out and the only way now is forward, sending love and hugs.
>168 jessibud2: I'm currently past 100 pages into The Stone Angel and it has captured me, Shelley! The first bit seemed a bit over detailed and quite depressing, but now I am quite taken by the story .
>169 PaulCranswick: You are most welcome, Paul. In not to long, we hope, you'll be back in the UK where books are more available to you. I think the Booker Prize Longlist is up in a couple more weeks.
>170 PaulCranswick: Yes, I am glad that Charlotte found that list! Here it is a B.C. prize list and I was unaware of it! :)
>171 alcottacre: Stasia, Maisie Dobbs is my go - to series, but I have gotten to the end! :) Another in the series is published March 21 2017 and I'll be looking for it! I hope you enjoy the series as much as I do!
>172 Ameise1: Thanks, Barbara! Happy Friday to you!
>173 ChelleBearss: I've not read The Hagseed and since Margaret Atwood and I don't really see eye to eye, I'll be skipping that one. Do Not Say We Have Nothing was a good read, but it was dense and moved back and forward in time quite a bit. I ended up making a map of the characters in the book to keep track of them all.
>174 johnsimpson: Hi John, I was so sorry to hear of Amy's situation. I hope she gets things sorted out soon. Having a company not work and then being laid off is not fun at all for anyone. Hugs to all!
I finished The Mistletoe Murder by P.D. James several days ago. An excellent volume of four short mystery stories. I loved reading P.D. James full length murder mysteries, so finding this small volume of new to me mystery stories was a quite a joy. Apparently P.D.James was often asked to write a short story mystery magazines at Christmas time , and this contains four of them. I enjoyed the stories very much , as well as P.D. James forward, explaining that while she preferred to write novels. As she explains " There is a satisfying art in containing within a few thousand words all those elements of plot, setting , characterization ,and surprise which go to to provide a good crime story . ..Much must be achieved with limited means." And P.D James accomplished amazingly well!
>160 vancouverdeb: new books! So tantalising. I didn't know that Rose Remain was still writing, for some reason I thought she was from another era ;)
>178 LovingLit: New books, yes! I have caved and purchased two from the Woman's Literary List, The Woman Next Door by Yewande Omotoso and The Dark Circle by Linda Grant. Both are being shipped from the UK, so it will take a month of so until I receive them. I also purchased from amazon ca The Ladies Chilbury Choir. It looked to be charming and something I might feel like reading and I loved the cover! :) Bad Deborah! Never judge a book by the cover!!!! How many times did my mom tell me that? (Not just books, but people etc ) . But I caved .
Here is the cover for The Chilbury Ladies Choir.
Love reading about the reading here on your thread Deborah! More snow....ugh.
Awesome that you continue to enjoy P.D. James, Deb. And how wonderful that you're reading (or rereading) The Stone Angel. Goodness, I haven't read that one since my university days. You remind me that I need to reread it.
>180 vancouverdeb: In your defence, it is a lovely cover! Happy weekend.
>181 karenmarie: Thanks Karen! A wonderful weekend to you!
>182 mdoris: Mary, I have you to thank for alerting me to the The MistleToe Murder by P.D.James. Thanks for that! More snow? We have a nice sunny day here!
>183 lit_chick: Nancy, it was wonderful to find more P.D.James as she passed away some years ago, and the volume of short stories did not disappoint! This is my first read of The Stone Angel. Last year I read A Jest of God by the same author. It is rather a sad story about a 90 year old woman, Hagar Shipley, looking back over her life, while trying to resist going into a nursing home. A sad but intriguing story. I imagine you already know that, having read it back in you university days.
>184 charl08: Thanks Charlotte re the cover. I had to laugh. Yesterday I pointed my new book out to my husband and said - isn't it lovely? He looked at me like I'd lost my mind. To do him credit he did try to look at the cover through my eyes and said - I guess if you like that. I had to chuckle at that.
Happy Friday, Deb! I had not heard of The Stone Angel or the author. Is it good?
We are back to winter here, around the freezing mark and now they are talking a snowstorm for Monday. Sighs...
>186 msf59: Thanks Mark! The Stone Angel was written back in 1964, by Margaret Laurence. I'm really enjoying, but it is quite sad and somewhat depressing. It's about a woman who is 90 years old, and living with her son and daughter in law. She looks back over her life, at the same time as her son and daughter in law try to get to a nursing home. Her memories largely quite bitter, but it is fascinating story. So, where you'd like , I'm not sure. But I plan to read all 5 books in so - called " Manawaka Cycle" and I've read one other, The Jest of God .
>187 Ameise1: Happy Weekend, Barbara!
>188 PaulCranswick: You too, Paul, though I suppose your weekend is nearly over.
Interesting, Deborah - I didn't know of P. D. James' short stories - but I still have many of her novels to explore first - if I ever get the time to do it.
>190 Berly: I'm delighted for you and Carsten and Nancy, that you will be joining the GR of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. I'm sure you'll have fun, Kim!
>191 ctpress: I had not heard of P.D.James short stories, either, Carsten, so what a joy to be able to read her stories after her passing. I loved her mystery novels when I was younger - might do a re - read of one or two. She is excellent writer!
>177 vancouverdeb: Looks right up my alley. Thanks for the recommendation, Deb!
I joined the Tenant of Wildfell Hall group read, too, Deb. About a tenth of the way in I'm in the groove with it, and enjoying it.
>193 Familyhistorian: I know what you mean about Do Not Say We Have Nothing as far as keeping track on the characters. I create a " map" of characters for books like that, and I'm too" simple" to be able to read more than one book at a time! :)
>194 alcottacre: Stasia, some one on LT gave me the idea to read Mistletoe Murders and I'm glad to pass that recommendation on. I'm not sure who gave me the recommendation. I had thought that I knew, but I was wrong. Enjoy!
>195 jnwelch: Joe, I have the book , but I never committed to the group, because at the time I was reading Great Expectations , which used up quite a bit of my classic , dense reading energy! :) However I must admit that the Tenant of Wildfell Hall looks intriguing and I'll probably read it later this year and use you , Nancy and Carsten and Kim's notes. I'll never catch up at this rate.
Hi, Deb. We are stuck back in a winter zone here but at least we did not get as much snow as other areas, north of here.
I am enjoying The Sympathizer, the writing is fantastic but it is a slow read.
Hi Deb, hope all is well with you and your family my dear, we are all as well as can be expected, Karen still has up and down days with eating and drinking but touchwood the last two days haven't been too bad. Amy has been really proactive on the job front and already has two interviews lined up so again touchwood that she has some luck.
I am ok and have got some reading done over the last few days so I am a happy boy. Sending love and hugs dear friend.
>197 msf59: Boo to being back in the winter zone, Mark, and more snow. It is definitely warming up here, even if it is still fairly rainy. I know what you mean about fantastic writing, but a slow read.
>198 Familyhistorian: Meg, I had a very fun grandma who would call herself " simple" in a joking way, which I suppose is how I meant it. But I really prefer to read just one book at a time, and I suppose that yes, when I am reading a book, I am focused. Thanks for the better word. One plot and set of characters etc is all I want at one time , if possible :)
>199 johnsimpson: John, it's great that Karen has had some good days and I'm delighted that Amy has two interviews for a job already lined up. Amy is doing very well. It's unnerving to find yourself needing a job. Love and hugs to you and Karen and your family.
>200 vancouverdeb: That is interesting Deb, because it is a very typical way of calling someone slow witted in Yorkshire. I remember calling my gran "bloody simple" when I was little more than a toddler - probably five or six - because she had overlooked bringing the usual bag of sweets with her as she was rushing for the bus. She and everyone else thought it a very cute thing to say, but nowadays I realise it was incredibly rude and only my age let me away with it.
>201 PaulCranswick: My grandma once said after she and my grandpa crossed the border from the USA into Canada that they ( my grandparents ) " must have looked too simple to smuggle" because they were not asked if they were bringing anything back from the USA. We all had a good laugh at that. My grandma was not one to call other people "simple" except in reference to herself, in a sarcastic way. My grandma did say " bloody " and "bugger " and " go to the devil" etc quite regularly, but my parents instilled a* no swearing policy* very well. They just never swore themselves and we were expected to likewise.
When you are so young , as you were, Paul, I think it is quite understandable that you said things that you did not understand. :)
I'm listening to Do Not Say We Have Nothing but it's not really grabbing me at the moment. I can't say that i'm engaging with the characters. This is the last Booker Shortlist book for me to read, and I think perhaps next year I'll giveback the Shortlist a miss unless there's a marked improvement on this year. There's only really been one book that I can honestly say I've enjoyed.
>203 SandDune: Oh, Rhian, I can't imagine listening to Do Not Say We Have Nothing by audio! I did review it, and you can read my review, and I did give it 4 stars, but I did say this in my review as a warning " but do be aware that at times you will feel as though you are slogging along through many pages and furiously creating charts about the relationships between the characters." And of course each of us feels differently about what we read. Which on the Booker Short List did you enjoy? I know what mean, some books are really slogs. Sometimes I slog along and get grabbed, other times I try to read a book and just cannot get into it.
I finished a Can Lit book, The Stone Angel and it was probably the 3-4 th time I tried to read the book, but this time I persisted and finally it grabbed me. But I was determined to find out why this was a such a lauded piece of Can Lit, published back in 1964 and still read. So it can depend on how motivated I am to read a book. So many factors.
But of course we are all so different as to what we enjoy / benefit from reading.
>205 thornton37814: From my perspective, print always works best for me. I think I has a certain amount of understanding of 20th Century Chinese history, but certainly I could have used more, Lori. I did find that I read up on Chinese history as I read the Do Not Say We Have Nothing as I read through the book.
Hi Deborah, how are your son and his wife doing in Iceland?
Sorry you are back to snow, we had some nice days but it is back to chilly weather with rain and wind today.
Hi Deb, sitting in Calgary airport waiting on my connection. Will arive to Halifax at 2:30 AM our time, and the Nova Scotians will be starting their day, LOL. I'll be a little turned around for a bit.
>207 FAMeulstee: Anita, I've not heard from my son and his wife except via pictures on Instagram each evening. I hope that they are enjoying Iceland. Most of the picture have been by the roadside, with Icelandic ponies, " Church Mountain" , volcanic stuff. I hope they have seen more than that! :) The are currently on their way from Iceland to Copenhagen today. It is a very busy trip, I think. I'll know more when they get home . Oh, no, we do not have snow, but plenty of rain and wind! Really quite a bit and Poppy is really not liking to wear here raincoat. She is giving me " airsnaps" and she shakes with anxiety over her raincoat.
>208 lit_chick: Ah! You flew West Jet , didn't you, Nancy! ;) The competition. ;P Maybe you can sleep on the flight and arrive perky and ready to go?
>209 Ameise1: Thanks Barbara. Well, the temperatures are really quite nice, 12 C , but the rain and wind is not nice at all! I'm waiting for more signs of spring too!
>210 vancouverdeb: Fingers crossed that spring and better weather are coming quickly.
Not too bad a day today, Deb. I hope you get to take Poppy for a relatively dry walk.
Hi Deb, hope you have had a good start to the weekend my dear, here it has been a miserable day unfortunately but tomorrow is supposed to be better. Have a really lovely Sunday dear lady and send love and hugs.
>211 Ameise1: A sunny but windy day here, Barbara. Much nicer! Perhaps spring is on it's way!
>212 Familyhistorian: Yes, thanks, Poppy and I got out for a nice dry walk! A little windy but a lovely and sunny!
>213 johnsimpson: Thanks John. We are having a lovely sunny day today. A lovely change from what we've had for the past couple of days.
>210 vancouverdeb: Their trip sounds very exciting to be honest Deb. I love my Scandi books and Hani has always wanted to visit the region, plus of course Yasmyne's latest beau is from Norway.
Have a great weekend.
>215 PaulCranswick: Paul, I think that there trip sounds really interesting too! My mom is 100% Icelandic, though she was born in Canada, as were her parents, so Iceland holds a certain captivation for me. My mom and my niece went to Iceland together several years ago and they both really loved it. My mom is planning to return with my sister in law and another niece of mine this summer. My son and DIL are now in Copenhagen for a few days, and then onto Amsterdam for 3 days, and then home and back to work. The weather has not been great in the countries that they have been visiting - worse than here, so I hope that has not affected their enjoyment on their travels.
I hope that you and yours get a chance to visit the nordic countries soon, Paul.
The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence.
From the publisher In her best-loved novel, The Stone Angel, Margaret Laurence introduces Hagar Shipley, one of the most memorable characters in Canadian fiction. Stubborn, querulous, self-reliant – and, at ninety, with her life nearly behind her – Hagar Shipley makes a bold last step towards freedom and independence.As her story unfolds, we are drawn into her past. We meet Hagar as a young girl growing up in a bleak prairie town; as the wife of a virile but unsuccessful farmer with whom her marriage was stormy; as a mother who dominates her younger son; and, finally, as an old woman isolated by an uncompromising pride and by the stern virtues she has inherited from her pioneer ancestors.Vivid, evocative, moving, The Stone Angel celebrates the triumph of the spirit, and reveals Margaret Laurence at the height of her powers as a writer of extraordinary craft and profound insight into the workings of the human heart.
My thoughts This is one of the 100 books " That Make You Proud to be a Canadian " according the CBC, http://www.cbc.ca/books/books100.html and I've often wanted to read this book, but it has never appealed to me enough to read it. Last year I read A Jest of God by the same author and really loved the spare, unsentimental writing style and the story, so this time I persevered and got completely caught up in the story.
Hagar Shipley is a 90 year old woman, living with her son and daughter in law, who would like her to go to a nursing home. Hagar is a proud, outspoken, bitter woman and often not an easy character to like, even as a reader. But as Hagar looks back over her life and her unspoken fear of a nursing home and death, I became entranced with Hagar and her story. Hagar was born in small town Manitoba, to a father who was proud, and very similar to Hagar in personality. Her mother died when she was very young. After being sent away for a ' ladies' education", Hagar defies her father and marries a rough, proud, brutish man, Bram Shipley. The physical attraction that she felt for Bram soon gives way to a very unhappy marriage. Not long after her marriage , Hagar realizes that " we'd each married for those qualities we later found we couldn't bear, he for my manners and speech, I for his flouting of them.'" p 69.
Hagar's life has been a series of disappointments, anger, and pride. It is sad but fascinating to experience Hagar's emotions as she confronts the idea that she is becoming senile and her son would like her to go into a nursing home. Old age is a scary time, but Hagar is too proud to admit that. As the initial epigraph says " Do not go gentle into that good night. Rage, rage against the dying of the light. - Dylan Thomas.
A fascinating and detailed look into a difficult life lived and the descent into old age.
Recommended for those of us who old enough to understand old age, but not for those who are fearing a nursing home.
I really loved it, but recommend it with a caution. 4.5 stars.
>218 vancouverdeb: I picked up a copy of that last week. It's sitting in my office. I'm glad to hear it's a good read!
The Stone Angel sounds intense but really good.
I hope you got some of today's sunshine up in your neck of the woods, Deborah. It was so lovely here in Seattle and everyone was outside! It was the first real spring-like day we have had in 2017.
>219 EBT1002: You are correct, Elllen, The Stone Angel was an intense read and not a cheerful read . Yes, we had a beautiful weekend , yesterday more so than today. Lovely and warm and sunny! The Woman Next Door is another book about two elderly women, as luck would have it, but it is an easy read, and not too intense.
>202 vancouverdeb: My parents had a no swearing and no vulgar language rule. "Shut up" was not permitted, much less swear words. When I was 17, someone broke into the car and stole my wallet (I know, I shouldn't have left it there...). I told my mother "Some f!!!er stole my wallet" and she told me I was hysterical and to go to my room.
I hope you have a great week!
>221 Ameise1: Thank you Barbara! Today was quite lovely!
>222 karenmarie: LOL Karen! The worst I ever did was when I was learning how to drive, my dad was sitting in the passenger seat, as he had to do, while I was a learner driver. I nearly did not stop at a red light and I said " damn" in whisper to myself. My dad actually started to laugh and said " you make sure that your mom knows I did not teach that to you." Have a great week, Karen!
>223 lit_chick: So kind of you, Nancy. I really loved the book after I got into it. I intend to read all of the books in " Manawaka Cycle " over time. I don't think they need to be read in order.
>224 FAMeulstee: Thanks Anita! I hope you can find 'The Stone Angel in The Netherlands. It was first published back in 1964, so it is Canadian Classic, - by Canadian standards. It is quite a dark, intense read, but I think you are quite okay with that.
>226 msf59: Thanks Mark! It was quite a dark read, in it's way, but I really enjoyed it!
Yes , quite a nice weekend with very good weather. Sunshine and up to about 50 F on Saturday. It's cooling off for the week again apparently and we have -- as always - some rain in the forecast.
Great review of The Stone Angel Deborah!
Lucky Poppy, no rain coat today!
Recommended for those of us who old enough to understand old age, but not for those who are fearing a nursing home. Hmmm..., Deborah - I'm not sure I fit in either category - ah, well, maybe I do and I'm just in denial being in the fifties. Good that you took a chance on it and can cross out another one of the "proud to be Canadian" list.
>228 mdoris: Thanks Mary! It was a intense read, but very worth it! Poppy has been quite delighted with the weather. Not perfect today, but we caught some time during which it was not raining!
>229 ctpress: Hmm, Carsten, I think you might be of the age to understand Hagar's troubles, yet not old enough to concern yourself to much about it :) It is a book I've tried to get myself to read more than a few times, to understand it's place in Canada Literature, and yes, I'm very glad that I read it.
The Woman Next Door by Yewande Omotoso. from this year's 2017 Bailey's Women's Literature Prize Long List
Two elderly women in their eighties have lived next door to one another for some twenty years. They live in post- apartheid Cape Town, South Africa. Hortensia James is black , and a bitter, angry woman who prefers to be alone. Next door is Marion Agostino, a white woman , who is rather a snob. Both are recent widows, with Hortensia having no children, and Marion being the mother of four children.
Both women are deeply discontented with their lives. Fate creates a situation where the women must come into contact with one another , and as each woman learns a bit about the other, a certain sympathy and friendship grows. It is a fragile one, and how it maintains itself going forward is left to the reader to imagine.
An easy and enjoyable read, but lacking in the depth that I had expected.
3.8 stars. I enjoyed and it was a quick read, just not up to the standard that I hoped for. Overall, a pleasant and quick read.
Hi, Deb. How is your week going? Still raining? I hope it is warming up for you.
Currently reading my favourite go - to series, Maisie Dobbs, In This Grave Hour.
Glad you enjoyed The Woman Next Door, Deb. This is one I'll read, too, at some point. Delighted you're into Maisie Dobbs' latest! I'm looking forward to this one ... in queue at my library for the audiobook.
>235 lit_chick: Hi Nancy! I did enjoy The Woman Next Door. It may have suffered due to my reading The Stone Angel just prior to The Woman Next Door. The Stone Angel was such an intense story and an amazing portrait of a woman looking back over her life. The Woman Next Door was pleasantly lighter, but also that much more forgettable.
I am also delighted to be reading In This Grave Hour! What a find for $20.00 at the book store a week ago! :)
As I expected you attack the Bailey-prize long list head on, Deborah. Seems this one might not be a favorite making it to the short list. I will be following your further explorations of this years nominees.
Hi Deb, hope you are having a good day my dear and wishing you a relaxing and enjoyable weekend dear friend. Sending love and hugs from both of us.
Hope you are enjoying your Friday, Deb. Some warmth and sunshine would be nice right about now but I guess it is March and at least it isn't snow.
>237 ctpress: Hi Carsten! I do have another Bailey Prize Long List book arriving in the mail, as some point, Carsten, and that is The Dark Circle. But it is coming from Wordery ca , I think it is, and they take ? a month or so to arrive I won't mind if The Woman Next Door makes it to the short - list, I'll just be surprised if it does. And I already read Do Not Say We Have Nothing, so it's a small start. There are some in the list that don't appeal to me , and I don't think I'll even bother worrying about them. But I like to take a sample from the LongList, yes! :)
>238 johnsimpson: Thanks John! Not a bad day at all - overcast and likely soon to rain, but not too bad. Love and hugs to you and Karen too!
>239 Familyhistorian: Thanks Meg! I hope you too are enjoying your Friday, and it's leading up to the weekend. Sunshine would be nice, but it's not too bad temperature wise at least.
Hi Deb. Canada Reads starts Monday. I haven't read any of the books and am not likely to get to any of them this weekend. But I will be listening! In fact, am I wrong in thinking that it is also on tv? I will have to check that out. It's fun to watch. I will miss Wab Kinew as host (that was the last time I watched).
Sounds like you have plenty of good reading lined up Deborah. Hope you have a good weekend.
>243 charl08: Thanks Charlotte, yes I do have some good reading lined up. Today is nice and sunny, so it looks to be a good weekend for me. Hubby is working as always , it seems. sigh.
Hi Deb, glad it is nice and sunny with you, it has been sunny and nice here today, just a shame Dave is working my dear, sending love and hugs.
Happy weekend, Deb. We had a sunny day, too and the forecast predicts a gorgous week ahead.
Keep up the good work on the Women's Prize for Fiction longlist, Deborah!
>245 johnsimpson: Yes, it was nice and sunny, but now it has clouded over. I think we are in for rain on Sunday , John.
>246 Ameise1: Thanks Barbara. Today was nice and sunny and warm,but it has since clouded over. I'm not sure what is forecast for Sunday, but I have feeling it will be rain. The weather here on the coast can change very quickly.
>247 kidzdoc: Thanks Darryl! I'll try. A lot of books are not yet available in Canada and I find the post from the Book Depository can take a month or more to arrive, so that discourages me from making a few more purchases. I hope things are going well for you.
I hope that your Sunday is full of sunshine and the turning of pages. xx
>249 PaulCranswick: Well, it is raining quite hard today, Paul, but thanks for the good wishes! :) We have a family birthday - my niece and daughter in law, so my day will be mainly spent with family, which will be lovely - but I'll miss those pages!
>250 Ameise1: Thanks, yes, Barbara, my son and DIL have returned as of late Friday. However I've not talked or seen them as yet - I know they are getting over jet lag and both have to go work tomorrow- Monday. We have a family get together later today, but they declined to come as they are very tired. I look really forward to hearing all about the their trip, but I'll wait a bit until they are recovered from it all! :)
I hope you get to see your son and DiL soon.
Best wishes for a great week!
Hi Deb, I've been absent for a while due to RL, but I'm glad to find you here in good health and spirits and that lovely woman on top of your thread is still turning the pages. Happy new week!
Hi Deb, I am hoping for some dry days this week but holding my breath. Have a great week!
It is 4:30 my time and I am watching the first installment of Canada Reads on tv, as I type. If you want to watch or listen, here is a link to help you:
As I have probably mentioned, I have not read any of the 5 but based on the clips I've seen and heard so far, the one I am most likely to pick up, at this point, is Sheila Watts-Cloutier's The Right to be Cold. I really agree with Chantal Kreviazuk (its defender) when she says it is more than timely, it is essential to our lives now, and given that the theme of the competition is what is the book Canada NEEDS to read now, what can be more important than climate change and what it is doing to our environment and our lives.
Anyhow, it will be an interesting week.
>255 Ameise1: Thanks Barbara! I hope your week is not too busy.
>256 FAMeulstee: Anita, you read so amazingly fast! I'm so glad that you enjoyed The Stone Angel.
>257 lit_chick: So wonderful that you are back in town, Nancy. I am LOVING In this Grave Hour and I should be finished it these evening. I don't know " who did it " yet, but it's such an enjoyable read. I was recommending Masie Dobbs to my sister last night, but she looked a bit dubious. I should have taken my book with me, but I did know " what are you reading " would come up at dinner.
>258 karenmarie: Yes I very much hope to see my son and Daughter in law soon too. They arrived home late Friday night, and both started back to work today, so I am guessing that they are very tired. I'll give them a quick call a little later and see if we can arrange a time. We usually try get all four of us together - my husband too - and he works such weird shifts - 4 days on, 4 days off for 10 1/2 hours shifts, it can be a challenge to find a time for all of us.
>259 MGovers: Great to see you, Monica! I wish I was reading as fast as the woman at the top of my thread! I need to take speed reading lessons!
>260 Familyhistorian: I did catch some non- rainy time for my dog walk today, Meg, but I know what you mean. It was raining quit a bit earlier today and it threatening to rain right now. Last night was not pleasant at all.
>261 jessibud2: Thanks so much the link, Shelley. I respect your right to pull for The Right to be Cold but I am pulling for The Break by Katherena Vermette. I also read Fifteen Dogs. I've think that Canadians need to better understand the plight of urban indigenous people, and how difficult leaving a difficult life behind is, and why our First Nations people struggle often struggle so much in Canadian society. I also have a soft spot for it because it takes place in Winnipeg, where I was born. I still have family in Winnipeg, and I seen first hand the struggle that the First Nations people have in Winnipeg.
But it's like sports teams, Shelley, so may the best book win! :)
Sorry to hear that the weather at your place isn't so nice, Deb. Here is hope for better weather soon.
>265 Ameise1: Thanks, Barbara! As I mentioned on your thread, spring seems to be taking it's time to arrive this year . We've had a little taste of it here and there, just enough to tease us!:) Today was very wet and blustery.
Morning, Deb. I just braved the weather to take out my organic refuse. It is a wet one out there! I hope the drive to work will be quick unlike yesterday when both the number 1 and the Lougheed were tied up in the morning. There were a few accidents probably a combination of rain and drowsy drivers returning from March break.
Good luck arranging your family get together. I'm sure you a looking forward to hearing about the trip.
Hi Deb! I have finally found my way to your thread. My thread visiting this year has been absolutely abysmal.
Love the thread topper gif although I have to say, she is a pretty quick reader the way she is flipping those book pages... faster than I am anyways. ;-)
>180 vancouverdeb: - Love The Chilbury Ladies Choir cover! If it helps any, I tend to pick up a book first based on its cover, and then read the inside flap/back cover synopsis when checking out new books. An ugly cover is such a turn off for me whereas I have read some bad books because I loved the cover. Go figure. :-)
>217 vancouverdeb: - Great review of The Stone Angel!
How about we all thing wonderful Spring weather thoughts and see if that will makes this lingering winter weather disappear.
>267 Familyhistorian: It certainly has been a rainy day and a rainy March, Meg. Apparently we are going to break a record for the rainiest day today, and most likely the rainiest month of March for some ?? 30 years, if I can remember what I watched on Global New tonight. ' Yes it will be a challlenge to the group of us together to hear about the trip and see the pictures. Shift workers, people with long hours and jet lag!
>268 lkernagh: Great to see you, Lori! I wish I could read at the pace of my gif! She is certainly a lot faster than I am this year! :) Lori, The LadieChilbury Choir sounded right my alley, a book about a village in England during WW11. " World War 11 in an English Village seen through the eyes of the most delicious cast- a masterpiece of secrets, misdirection, village gossip" etc - so it I hope it will be charming read. I do love the cover though, I confess! But for some reason I've had other books calling to me . I'm trying to make a bit of a dent in the Baileys Woman list, but so many of the books are not available in Canada as of yet.
Yes, Lori, let's all try to think Spring thought and see if that helps!
>270 Familyhistorian: - I will match your anti-rain dance and add an anti-wind dance (the wind is rattling the window panes as I type this). :-)
Hi, Deb. Just checking in with my sidekick. Hope all is well. Sorry, to hear about the contuining rain. We have been damp and cool too, but we are persevering.
It's been a rainy March here, as well Deb. I just try to be happy it's not snow and ice.
Sounds like you have been getting lots of reading in!
>271 lkernagh: - Okay, I will do an anti rain dance - I really will! I'll even do an anti wind dance. At the moment - and I do say the moment - it is sunny outside here. And I see blue sky!! How about that!
>272 msf59: Yes, Mark, all is well. We have had a lot of rain, and it's been damp and cool , but yes, we too are perservering. You are doing more than persevering - you are out there on bird walks , rain or not?
>273 banjo123: Rhonda, I am very glad that it is not snow and ice too! We don't usually get much of that, but this year we got a far more than we usually do. Here, we can go for 3 or so winters and not see any snow. This year we had a lot more than usual.
No rain today, otherwise I would have skipped the bird walk. Just cool, and overcast. Rain moving in tonight and thru tomorrow. Sighs...
>275 msf59: I should have known , Lone Ranger! Living here in rainforest, I notice that during the rain, mainly all I see is ducks, and seagulls. The rest of the birds go and hide. Even the ducks that I see often in the river along the Fraser River, tend to cluster in sheltered ponds during the rain and wind. We have blue sky right now!
East coast here has a blowing snow warning for overnight and early morning. 10-15 cm snow then the winds come, and winds are the problem here. I'm not actually complaining, because this all means there is a good chance for school cancelling and since it could be our last snow day, I'm hoping for it.
>274 vancouverdeb: I'll not do a raindance (or anti-rain dance) at work (the perils of open-plan), but will try and remember when I get home...
Hope those Prize-formerly-known-as-Orange books turn up for you soon.
Oh, and I knew I'd forgotten something! I've ordered a copy of The Book of Negroes, as I have a loyalty voucher burning a hole in my pocket. I don't know when I'll get to it, but I remember you said it was good.
Hi Deborah! I don't live near any ponds so don't see ducks very often, but I did see the Carolina Wren today - he/she flings sunflower seeds out of the feeder then sits in the tray and works on them.
Hi Deborah-- you have my empathy as February was the wettest one on record here and March is pushing its way to the front as well. My daughter keeps wishfully asking if it's summer yet!
Deb, Toronto has no snow left at all and it has been rather spring-like. I arrived in Montreal today and wore just sneakers, no boots. They are expecting 10cm of snow tomorrow. Sheesh. But it won't last as temps are going up (I hope!)
I just read that Fifteen Dogs won Canada Reads today. Oh well. I was rooting for The Right to Be Cold.
I also recently finished reading a memoir by Jann Arden and quite enjoyed it. Then, on the CBC Books website, I read that she has a new one coming out later this year, about being her mom's caregiver as she (mom) lives with dementia (and that her dad passed away recently, too). How sad. I will definitely want to read this new one. She is such a character and a big talent
>281 karenmarie: Sounds great, Karen, a Carolina Wren! It was sunny today, but I did not get outside, so I did not see any birds at all. I mainly see ducks and waterfowl, due being at the mouth of the Fraser River, and the Pacific Ocean. You just can't miss the ducks, geese, herons, plovers and the like. Yesterday there was a huge flock of snowbirds flying north, thank goodness! The Snowbirds can really leave behind a big mess .
>282 Berly: We did get sun today, Kim, but I''m not sure what is in the forecast for the weekend. I hope that you are feeling better.
>283 jessibud2: Shelley, I confess I don't even own a pair of boots! ;) I do have a pair of waterproof low rise hikers and those have served me quite well this winter. But if we are going to get more winters like this one, with the snow, I'm going to have to get actual boots and some sort of trax for the bottom so I don't slip. Sorry about your snow!
>284 jessibud2: Yes, I caught bits of Canada Reads and I learned that Fifteen Dogs was the winner. Well, I was pulling for The Break, but I will live to see another day. ;) I had read Fifteen Dogs and The Break. Fifteen Dogs was a 4 star read for me, but it sure is not for everybody.
You and I will have to see if we can get on the debating panel for Canada Reads next year! :) I had not realized that Jann Arden had written anything , I'll look into that.
This topic was continued by vancouverdeb reading for 2017 Thread #3.
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