Anita ( figs) Reads in 2019 -Second Thread
This is a continuation of the topic Anita ( figs) Reads in 2019 .
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My rating system is as follows:
1 = Very Very bad. Either I could not finish the novel, or the plot was ill-conceived
2= Still bad. I managed to finish the book. It was probably boring, unoriginal or poorly written
3= Solid. There was character development, the pace was probably slow or parts of the book were well thought out. Still had the ability to make me think or at the very least want to continue reading, however, something was missing or could have been further developed.
4= Excellent read. I probably couldn't put the book down till it was finished. The pace was spot on, complex characters, made me think in a different way and so on
5= Does this ever happen? When it does, I will revise this section
Best books read this year so far:
Memoir: Tara Westover: Educated
YA: Robin Roe: A List Of Cages
Historical Fiction: Glynis Peters: The Secret Orphan
Book That deserves a re-read: Jim Crace: The Melody
Here is a photo of the carriage house that has consumed a lot of my time. It's attached to the existing house ( which is not shown). Still, a lot of work to be done....
>4 figsfromthistle: Wow! That looks awesome! Happy new thread and I love your topper, too. : )
Happy New Thread, Figs. Love that colorful topper. I missed most of your last thread. I will try to do better, on this one.
Happy new thread, Anita.
>3 figsfromthistle: Some very good books up there.
56. Terry Fallis: One Brother Shy
Alex is a socially awkward man who is haunted by an incident that happened in high school. He is just trying to exist without bringing on too much attention or forming meaningful connections with others. However, something he discovers forces him to venture outside of his comfort zone.
Some parts were funny. A novel that touches upon bullying and the negative impact it can have on a person-way into adult life. This was the weakest novel by Fallis so far and yet showed strengths in unexpected ways. Too many things irritated me- ah well!
Happy new thread, Anita.
Lovely photo of the flower at the top.
>4 figsfromthistle: This looks amazing. Are you almost finished?
>21 BLBera: Thanks! It's 3/4 of the way finished. There's still the stairs and retaining wall on the outside to do. The drywall is hung and the taper seems to be taking a long time since he is only working on the weekends. The siding and facia should be done by the end of the week. I spent my day off running around looking for flooring and tiles and lights ( with little success). So it is getting there.
>23 jnwelch: Thanks! Yes those are from a cactus in my flowerbed:)
All the Light we cannot see was a 4 star read for me as well.
>24 EllaTim: Thank you, Ella. I like seeing covers lined up like that as well. Also, the picture of the house is an addition that I made to my home ( like a carriage or coach house).
>25 RebaRelishesReading: Thanks! The book covers displayed that way is kind of calming.
57. Aja Gabel: The Ensemble
Four university music majors form a quartet with the short term goal of winning a prestigious competition. Emotions run high as the four members strive to achieve personal and professional goals.
A coming of age story where nothing seems to happen and yet the reader finds him/herself plunged into the trials, successes, and turbulences of the four protagonists chaotic lives.
Mixed feelings on this one.
58. Barbara Kingsolver: Flight Behavior
Dellarobia is housewife living in a small spiritual centric town. Feeling suffocated by her surroundings she attempts to run away. However, in the depths of the forest, she sees something extraordinary that causes her to turn back and re-evaluate everything she believes in.
This is the first novel by Kingsolver that I have read. I did not know what to expect and ended up enjoying it. A great story about determination, challenge, and change. How each action has long-reaching effects and it is up to us to ensure that these effects are positive.
Hi Anita, I love the visual display of the books you've read. There are some excellent ones there. I also enjoyed Flight Behavior, although it's not my favorite Kingsolver book. Off the top of my head, I remember liking The Lacuna and Poisonwood Bible quite a bit. Also, her first book, The Bean Trees about a road trip from Kentucky to Tucson, AZ, and adopting a Native American baby girl was memorable.
Wow, you are adding an addition to your house. Makes my little project look, well, little. Do you have a completion date to look forward to?
>33 Donna828: Hey Donna! I will definitely have to acquire more Kingsolver books.
As for the house, I have no set completion date however, I really would like to be done before the snow flies. The project did get out of hand as it was just supposed to be a garage addition *sigh*.
It looks like you have been quite busy with your remodel as well.
Hi, Figs! I am a big fan of Kingsolver but have not read Flight Behavior. It is on the list. I hope this one sparks you to read more of her work.
Funny how projects get out of hand, Anita. :)
I also LOVED Flight Behavior, and it is one of my favorite Kingsolvers. You have a lot of good choices ahead.
Hi Anita my dear, happy new thread. Hope you are having a good weekend, I am slowly catching up on all the posts on the threads that I have not seen whilst being away. I am posting about our holiday but am not going to bore you all with the minutiae but hope to post some pictures when I get them from Karen. Sending love and hugs dear friend.
>40 johnsimpson: Welcome back from your vacation! Can't wait to see the pictures you have taken :)
Happy new thread, Anita. That is quite an addition. It definitely grew from just a garage! I love the topper. I don't think I have ever seen a blooming cactus before.
>42 Familyhistorian: Thanks! This particular cactus blooms after the first year. I have another cactus that took 20 years to grow one bloom. I am surprised that they survive in the Candian climate. Quite beautiful.
>43 humouress: Hi! Sometimes when I have trouble seeing the covers I sign out of LibraryThing and back in and it seems to do the trick.
As for the addition, a lot was done by my father and I ( my mom helped where she could). I am lucky that my father is a retired construction engineer. We hired someone for plumbing, framing, heat and electrical. I also opted to hire a drywaller as this job is too heavy for my dad ( he has severe knee problems). The rest is all us. Not too long ago we completed the brick and stucco- that was a huge job for us. I forgot how it was like to build scaffolding and mix mortar!
>44 figsfromthistle: I was wondering if you built the structure yourselves. I’m not sure I’d trust something that big if I built it; my dad is a bit of s DIY-er but my husband would rather get someone else in to do work. Especially as it’s more affordable in Asia.
Amazing job! Especially the bridge.
>45 humouress: We just hired someone to build the structure (framing). He worked off the design and engineered drawings that my dad made.
You are quite right to always be careful when building. Many aspects can go wrong and many people underestimate the knowledge needed. Here we have building inspectors that come at various stages to ensure all is well. Is it the same in Asia?
Dropping in to say hi and find you deep into the house construction and still able to knock out some books!
I love your new carriage house and the walkway to it! It looks like there is living space above it? A new library for you, perhaps?
59.Patrick deWitt: Under Major Domo Minor
Lucy Minor is a young man who has run out of opportunities in his home town. He decides to take on a job as an assistant to the majordomo who is Baron Von Aux's, right-hand man. He soon discovers the peculiarity of the townspeople and the rules concerning his stay in the castle are equally puzzling. Or course, Lucy finds himself in love and in dangerous and uncomfortable situations.
Somehow this story pulled me in. I was intrigued to see what happens on Lucy's journey. I enjoy deWitt's writing style, however, I was waiting for more to happen ( and I don't mean the grotesque scene in the middle).
>46 figsfromthistle: Hmm, don't know. Singapore is the most by-the-book of Asian countries but it's been more than a decade since we had our house renovated but I don't remember it being inspected. Of course, we didn't do it ourselves, so it's entirely possible that the inspectors came by and talked to the construction people.
I do know that there are a lot of regulations and our contractor had to stick to them. In England, for instance, we usually had a string to pull to switch on bathroom lights. In Singapore, you're not allowed electric points inside the bathroom and our electrician absolutely refused to put them up for me, even though a friend managed to find the switches and send them to me. (This is the same electrician who happily relocated lights at will, which caused the guys doing the construction to grumble about all the holes they had to patch up after him.)
ETA: >52 figsfromthistle: Haven't come across Lucy as a man's name; unless it's his surname and he's the younger brother (hence the 'minor')?
>53 humouress: It is interesting how building codes vary. You would think that something that is a fire hazard in one country or even a province would still be a fire hazard in another. Sometimes I swear that the inspectors just make things up :)
Lucy is the protagonist's nickname. His real name is Lucien. The minor comes from the fact that he is the assistant to the majordomo who in turn is the assistant to the Baron. So Lucy holds the lowest rank and the castle.
60. Peter Matthiessen: In Paradise
To find out about his family history, Clements Olin takes part in a one week retreat in Auschwitz. He encounters many people who are struggling with their grief and guilt. All have a story to tell and all of whom have differential reasons for taking part in the retreat.
Many issues were subtly touched upon here.
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