AlphaKIT for February: K and O
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Welcome to AlphaKIT for February.
The rules are... none! Use the letters however you like to choose your reads for the month. Well, okay, there is one rule: Have Fun!
February AlphaKIT letters are : K and O.
Please remember to update the wiki and enter books alphabetically: https://wiki.librarything.com/index.php/2019_AlphaKIT#February:_-_Letters_K_and_...
Although there are other possibilities, I think I will go for the double with "Darius the Great is Not Okay" by Adib Khorram
I'm changing my "O" book to Torn by Erica O'Rourke which will also work for the Series Cat this month.
These are my options for February:
Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
Oedipus the King by Sophocles
On Tyranny by Timothy Snyder
The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (by Thomas S. Kuhn
So Cold the River by Michael Koryta; narrated by Robert Petkoff
The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert
Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella
My work schedule as been so heavy lately that I don't think I get to more than three or four of the books listed above, but hope springs eternal! :-)
I have one that I found when searching my TBR, On Two Feet and Wings by Abbas Kazerooni. A young adult audio.
Haven't decided on my "O" read yet, but for K, I'm reading one by Kim Harrison.
I am reading The Winter of the Witch by Katherine Arder for the calendarCAT. It will work for the letter K here too. It’s the 3rd book in the “Winternight” trilogy.
Here are my possibilities for this month:
Cold Brew Killing
✔Coloring Crook by Krista Davis
✔Crowned and Moldering by Kate Carlisle
✔Cut to the Chaise by Karen Rose Smith
✔Dead as a Door Knocker
✔Eggs On Ice
✔Hair of the Dog
✔In Want of a Knife
✔Kingdom of the Blind
Light in the Window by Jan Karon
Murder in the South of France by Susan Kiernan-Lewis
Restaurant Weeks Are Murder by Libby Klien
Sorcerer's Companion by Allan Zola Kronzek
Just finished The Outcast Dead , number six in the Ruth Galloway series.
I've got a few planned for Feb that fit:
Xenocide by Orson Scott Card
The Subtle Knife
The Help by Kathyrn Stockett
>22 amaranthe: I'm with you - I like to use both letters in either the title or the author's name. But I cheated a bit this month and chose a book with 'OK' in the title - a bit of an easy option!
Could use Kenneth Oppel - he wrote the childrens' series Silverwing, so you can hit the childrens' series CAT as well.
For my "K" I'm reading Keeping Faith-Jodi Picoult. I haven't decided on an "O" yet.
A few years ago, I read the contemporary romance novel, The Australian Jetsetters & Jeopardy (Book #2 by Lesley Young) which featured an autistic woman who heads to Australia and falls in love with her boss (against a backdrop of criminal intrigue and gorgeous settings, but I digress...) The story disturbed me because of the way the woman was portrayed, autism as a mental handicap for which the male love interest exploited her. I think some of the scenes were meant to be funny but I cringed nonetheless. I bring this up because when I heard the The Kiss Quotient (by Helen Hoang) was about a woman with autism, I was wary and hesitated for months in picking it up. Finally, I did, and I have to say I was pleasantly surprised and even charmed! Stella Lane falls on the spectrum as having Asperger's and has leveraged this in her job as an econometricist. She decides to tackle her issues in regard to intimate relationships by hiring a male escort. Enter Michael, a man who has put his dreams on hold to help support his family and who patiently walks Stella through the process, but of course falling into love with Stella herself. It's sort of like a role-reversed 'Pretty Woman' (which is briefly alluded to in the story.) I see quite a few other readers are put off by the amount of sex in the book, but it didn't bother me at all and didn't feel gratuitous. Maybe because the whole tactile experience was part of the story? I also loved the story for metaphorically shifting the language from "despite her autism" to "because of her autism." It's a subtle thing but it made all the difference from The Australian.
I just picked up Lindsey Kelk's One in a Million from the library, so I'll be using it for both letters this month.
Neverwas / Kelly Moore, Tucker Reed, Larkin Reed
This is the 2nd book in a trilogy. Sarah has moved from Oregon to Maryland with her family to take over her grandmother’s old house (from book 1). It’s been too long since I read book 1 to remember what led to the current “situation”, and I don’t want to give too much away, but Sarah seems to be seeing things. Her best friend since childhood (and a neighbour), Jackson, also sees things, but different things.
Ok, I was confused through parts of it, and kind of lost interest a bit (mostly in the things Sarah was “seeing”, but not as much in her “here and now”), and I’m sure the losing interest helped with the confusion. Ultimately, I decided on an “ok” rating, simply because I’m still interested enough to find out what happens in the last book. This one isn’t nearly as good as the first book, though.
Sleeping Beauties / Stephen King, Owen King
Women all around the world are going to sleep and not waking up. Not only that, once they are asleep, they are then shrouded in some kind of cocoon. The book primarily follows the people in a town called Dooling, a town that also houses a women’s prison. Included in that prison is a woman, who gave her name as Evie, who appeared right around the time women were falling asleep and not waking up. Evie was arrested just after a house blew up and two men were murdered.
I listened to the audio, which I think made things a bit trickier for me to follow. Like most of Stephen King’s book, there was a very large cast of characters and we jumped around between different character’s perspectives, so it was very easy for me to lose track of who was who, and there were some I never did remember right up to the end of the book. Overall, though, it was a good story, and I enjoyed the little addition at the end of the audio book, that included an interview with both Stephen and Owen.
King John (by William Shakespeare) - In the chronological order of monarchs, this os the first of the British monarchs represented in Shakespeare's canon. William the Conquerer's great-grandson, John succeeds to the throne but the claim is disputed, the noblemen are fickle in their loyalties, the French threaten, the women are ambitious and catty, and the Church is stirring things up.... I've seen many people cite this play as their least favorite of the Bard's, but I found it fascinating for what it contained inasmuch as what wasn't there! From the outset, Richard I's bastard son ( o_0 ), the portrayal of King John as a sort of Protestant prototype in his dealings with the Pope, the lack of intense antipathy being represented from the people over heavy taxation made me wonder how King John had actually been received contemporary to his time, and at Shakespeare's time. Now, of course, John has been branded the villain thanks to eighteenth-century Romanticism (Robin Hood) but a quick assay reveals there is very little about him to be gleaned from the thirteenth century, much less from his reign, in terms of public perception. Interestingly, the play does not mention the Magna Carta either.. This make me wonder of there are lost "bits" that didn't make it into the collections of folios... Ah! If only I had the time and temperament to be a Shakespeare scholar! Anyway, this the first of the Histories I plan on reading this year. Onward! The next one is Edward III :-)
I finished my O book, There There by Tommy Orange. Really great debut novel. I enjoyed this one a whole lot and it will end up in my faves for the year. I can almost bet on it.
I have finished one O so far, Oronoko by Aphra Behn, which I thought was very good. I'm almost finished with one more O, Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady's Guide to Sex, Marriage and Manners by Therese Oneill which is quite fun.
I'm about to start another "K" read, King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo.
I have finished my "O" read and Zahrah the Windseeker by Nnedi Okorafor is a magical and charming children's fantasy.
My K selection:
Next of Kin by John Boyne
A fantastic thriller about a young Brit who feels cheated out of his rightful inheritance while also hip deep in gambling debts, and a murder plot centered round the affair between King Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson. Boyne is fast earning a Can Do No Wrong sticker from me; his children's/middle grade/young adult stuff is so absolutely gorgeous and I was curious about his books for grownups. And I am so incredibly far from disappointed - this book is so full of seat-edgy, stay-up-late-to-read fabulousness that it's not even funny. So it's official: I super-heart John Boyne (I mean, I did before, of course - if you haven't read The Boy in the Striped Pajamas or The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket or Stay Where You Are and Then Leave or any of his other kiddo books then you should rectify that immediately - but now I'm ready to declare that love to the world.).
I have read Silverwing by Kenneth Oppel as suggested by >23 JayneCM: (only the first book yet). Not only does it also hit the SeriesCat theme, but I also got it out of the library, which makes it borrowed (TBRCat), it is entirely concerned with travel (RandomCAT), and is a book bullet from JayneCM, which is a BingoDOG square.
I liked it and will read the others in the series. It is quite violent, but I suppose that is usual for this kind of book about animals that behave like animals (although they organize and think like humans). It seemed to me very like the Erin Hunter books (e.g. Warriors) that my nephew likes, except that Silverwing is rather better written. And of course it is about bats rather than cats, dogs, bears, or African animals. And it was written about six years earlier than Into the Wild, so really the Warriors books are like Silverwing, not the other way around.
>46 amaranthe: Excellent work on scoring a CAT-trick! Also cool that it worked for AlphaKit and the Bingo!
Delirium / Lauren Oliver
Lena’s mom and dad died when she was young, so Lena was raised by her aunt. Lena’s 18th birthday is coming up soon, and it will be such a relief to be able to have the surgery done – the cure! – to prevent the sickness “amor deliria nervosa” (aka love). Everyone gets the cure on their 18th birthday. She’ll be matched with someone to marry and her life will be perfect. But, before her birthday (and the surgery) arrives, she meets Alex…
I really liked this. It seems an odd premise, but I went with it, and quite enjoyed it. I liked Lena’s best friend, Hana, and her young cousin(?), Grace, although a bit more interaction with Grace might have been nice. Maybe one of the upcoming books in the series will have more about her? I will definitely be continuing.
Finished On Two Feet and Wings by Abbas Kazerooni for my K. Also satisfies O with On
Another "K" to the list!
The Killer Angels (by Michael Shaara) - This Pulitzer Prize-winning novel covers the Battle of Gettysburg from multiple points of view on both the Union and Confederate sides. One of the reasons I generally avoid non-fiction about the Civil War is that many writers tend to info dump numbers and data to the point that the battles become statistical events rather than human ones. But Michal Shaara's book conveys the scale of the battle in terms of acreage, the body count, and the ethical costs by leaning more towards historical fiction than military fiction in style and tone. There are some maps that help readers understand the positions of the troops, but its the descriptive imagery of the smoke and fog, the green fields and white fences, the bloodied men and horses that stick with you as well as the sadness, anger, joy, and shock of the characters. And yes, I may have spent yesterday morning crying over the death of a man who passed away over 155 years ago.
I read Old Kensington by Anne Thackeray Ritchie for both letters at once. For those who enjoy Victorian novels--I loved it.
I finished my 'O' selection yesterday:
Wish by Barbara O'Connor
Charlie isn't happy about social services taking her from her mother to live with her aunt and uncle in what she thinks of as 'hillbilly land' in the Blue Mountains. She gets in trouble at school for her anger issues and feels that she doesn't need to make an effort here because she'll hopefully be back home soon. In fact, she makes at least one wish every day to that end. But she finds a stray dog, with whom she shares a kindred spirit, and slowly she begins to realize that she may just be home after all.
When I started this one I admit that I wasn't enthusiastic: yet another middle grade book about a kiddo displaced from her home and lashing out at the ones trying to be kind to her. It's been done. Tons, it seems. But in the end, this one wasn't the worst of its kind that I've read, although it does flirt with being too saccharine.
I finished my "O" selection earlier this week: The Wolf and the Watchman by Niklas Natt och Dag. Overall, a chilling, brutal and relentless genre-bending novel that dives into the dark side of the human psyche. An absolutely outstanding novel and I am not surprised that it was named Best Debut of 2017 by the Swedish Academy of Crime Writers.
>64 lkernagh: I don't read much mystery these days but I read your full review and this sounds amazing! Definitely a Book Bullet! :-)
I read a double: No Country for Old Gnomes by Delilah S. Dawson & Kevin Hearne. More punny than funny.
I’ve finished O Jerusalem by Laurie R. King for my K book. Hope to finish O either today or tomorrow.
I never even noticed - duh! But I’m trying to use author’s last names for my own twist on the challenge.
I managed to finish my “O” book - Torn by Erica O’Rourke at the last minute.
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