The Padded Cell: Bookmarque Reads without Rules (Part 1)
This is a continuation of the topic Bookmarque’s Padded Cell 2018 - Shared Delusions 2.
Join LibraryThing to post.
Welcome to the Undisciplined Reading room!
I have a very relaxed approach to reading.
No little tracking tickers.
No boxes to check.
No teetering stacks to climb.
Just books. Monthly reading wrap-ups. Weird book covers.
My photos. Travel (Louisiana, California & Portugal are on the docket already).
And whatever else I want to throw into the mix.
If you’re new to The Padded Cell I mostly read -
Don’t you love the word smattering?
Join me on a yearly list - 2019 List
My previous Annual Lists
Books read 2018
Books read 2017
Books read 2016
Books read 2015
Books read 2014
You can find my old reading threads here -
You can find my photography blog here
My book blog is here
My jewelry store is The WireSmith
Some fun stats and charts will be coming soon. I can’t believe I’ve gotten this all done so early! Crazy.
To tide you over, here are some lovely swans -
They are still around even at this time of year. The other day about a dozen or so roosted overnight in the backyard on the river ice. I guess they stay until there’s no more open water. Two more just flew by a few minutes ago.
By a curious coincidence I'd just been introduced to this when I read your post. The cello-sounding instrument (viewer's left) is a theremin, and she plays it by waving her arm around in the air in front of it.
Fabulous picture, as usual!
Happy new year, with happy new travels and experiences!
Happy new year! I'm looking forward to following your reading and your photography adventures this year.
looking forward to see what else you turn up for 'weird' book covers - that's always fun!
Thanks peeps. As I'm going to be in North Dakota this weekend (long story), I'll put a couple stats up now. I read fewer books last year than in 2017, but I don't care. It's not a contest and no one gets a prize.
And here's how they fell month to month -
The Argentina trip and the Vegas weekend in April as you can tell. I forget what I was doing in June, but I did take a couple of days to go to Washington and Rock islands in Door county.
Oh and theremins are weird hugh. Weirder still that it was The Swans. I have some Saint-Saëns around and will have to see if I have that piece done without a theremin.
Nice swans! I didn't realize they would stay so late. They stop in the field behind our house sometimes when they're returning in the spring.
Wishing you a happy new year, with plenty of time to spend with some good books
I was surprised at the swans' presence here now, too. I don't remember them being here so late in other years. But I guess they do stay for as long as is tolerable. And after reading that book about the evolution of feathers, I'm not surprised anymore. Warm as toast I'm sure.
One more chart before I break for dinner and then head for North Dakota.
Thanks MrsL. I'm back and I have to say I liked North Dakota. Probably that makes me weird, but hey, I did move to Wisconsin.
The terrain is really different from anywhere else I've ever been and I lucked out with the weather and the light. A few minutes from where I dropped my hubby off for the carry licensing deal was this recreated Mandan camp. It's right on a high bluff on the Missouri river and the light was AMAZING.
Lewis & Clark met the Mandan on their way back from the coast. By that time they'd already abandoned this site and it was in ruins. In the 1930s it was saved by archaeologists and the mound houses recreated. You can go in them and they are wonderful even though they aren't original. More pics as I work them through my process.
Here is a shot of the larger ceremonial building at the Mandan camp. It's called Slant Village because the ground it's on slopes down to the Missouri. I went inside and it's really amazing even if native people didn't build them. It is very near to the family lodges, I think I was standing by the doorway of the second one above to take the shot below.
Wow! What a cool place! I'm glad they were preserved. The sky is so blue there!
I love those photos, the contrast between earth and sky is striking. Those dwellings must have been pretty warm in winter with the thick earth walls.
Thanks peeps. I don't know how warm they were, but probably better than standing in the ND wind which is fierce. The sky was amazing that day. Well for a while. Later it looked like this -
I've written most of a blog post about the village, the Mandan and their culture. Not much is known because mostly they're all dead and they had no written language, but there is a little. It will go up on the blog in early February.
The pictures are great.
In terms of warmth, natural caves hover around 10C throughout the year. I would suggest these units would be much warmer than 10C if they were inhabited.
Thanks Pete. I'm sure they were fairly warm, especially with fires and folks inside them. Not to mention dogs. When the village was in its hey-day it had 86 family lodges and had a population approaching 1000 people. It was one of 9 settlements of similar size and formed part of a much larger trading area. The Mandan were primarily farmers, growing crops of beans, squash, tobacco and corn. Here's another shot of the large ceremonial building (all of which were owned and constructed by the women).
More charts for last year's reading. I know you've been holding your breaths. 😉
As usual, I bought a lot of books.
And here's the split between new, used and freebies -
Last for today are the formats -
And how they compare with other years -
ebooks are down again, but physical copies are up (it's all those used & library books) and audio holds steady.
>23 Bookmarque: Well, maybe it's just my mind, but is your Yearly Format Comparison giving us the finger?
OMG. I am a glutton for punishment. Just finished a really horrible audio book, What You Don't Know by JoAnn Chaney. Truly dreadful. Horrible characters, story, events, writing and narrator. I skipped a lot of it toward the end, just waiting to get it finished. Then I returned it to Audible immediately. I knew I would. Normally I put audio books I've heard into rotation for when I wake up in the night, but this one is so repugnant that I knew pretty much right away that I'd never listen to it again. If you click the title you can see my notes/review. NOT recommended.
So now to get that gunk out of my pysche I'm listening to the delightful Michael Caine read his latest memoir Blowing the Bloody Doors Off. I watched The Italian Job fairly recently so I can picture the scene from that line, and hear him say it in my head.
Oh and while I'm talking about bad books. These are the worst from last year -
The Forbidden Place - Susanne Jansson
Everyone is so ominous and fey. Making cryptic remarks and having halting interactions as if everyone is covered in shards of glass. Nobody can give a straight answer, they all have mysterious and pointless agendas. The prose is dreamy and opaque and has lots of navel gazing from the characters. The plot, what little of it there is, is a slow moving mass of nearly dried out paint.
Waking the Moon - Elizabeth Hand
Way overblown, histrionic, hyperbolic and festooned with just too much language. It felt choked; as if it were strangling on itself and struggling to tell the story. Way to hit me over the head with the feminist message, too. Patriarchy=bad, ok already.
Grist Mill Road - Christopher J. Yates
Overall it’s a tight and reasonably original piece of storytelling. So why the two stars? Because the whole way through Yates keeps beating us over the head about what Hannah did to bring this on herself. Yes friends it’s blame the victim time! We are led to understand that once again, the actions of a female are too much for a male to overcome and he’s swept away in his emotions and just can’t help being violent. Bleah.
The Bookman’s Tale - Charlie Lovett
There’s a fine line between write what you know and write a wish-fulfillment vehicle that encapsulates your every fantasy and Lovett doesn’t know where it is. The mystery brought every tired, shopworn cliche and trope into harness, right down to the gloating and monologuing villain. So eye-rolling I just had to laugh.
Wrack - James Bradley
Suffered by being bogged down with info dump after info dump; the science of map making, geometry, opera and every other damn thing that tangentially connected to the ship, the search and the documents hinting that the Portuguese “discovered” Australia. I think the author didn’t have a story so much as a bunch of cool stuff he read about and tried to string it together with weak cement to cobble together a novel.
Oh I wish Peter Sellers was still around. He was brilliant.
and I like the book so far. he's got an easy style that matches how he writes.
My morning visitor. Sorry for the slightly bad quality...I was shooting through my living room window and there were some small tree branches in between.
>32 Bookmarque: That is super.
He looks quite cunning. Is that a Paddington Bear stern look he is giving you?
Thanks guys. It was a wonderful experience and it totally made my day. I was shooting out my window so somewhat constrained and so I apologize for the bad compositions. Here's what else happened -
The lure -
The stalk -
The catch -
I did watch it kill and make sure the squirrel was dead, but it did that behind some trees and my deck railing was also in the way. Quick can't even describe it. The fox went from resting, waking up to hunting in about a minute. It was a privilege to watch nature working and I know one reason my local squirrel population stays so stable.
This topic is not marked as primarily about any work, author or other topic.