Familyhistorian Takes Her Reading into 2020
This topic was continued by Familyhistorian Takes Her Reading into 2020 - part 2.
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Hi, I’m Meg and I read lots of mysteries and histories and other stuff too. Last year I aimed to read more of my own books and failed miserably. This year I aim to do more of the same (the actually reading of my own tomes, not the failing miserably part.) We’ll see how that goes.
In 2019 I read 200 books, the high point, I think. In 2020 I want to spend more time on my writing. It is time to add fiction to the other writing that I do. Most of my writing is related to my love of history and genealogy which is why my blog’s title is A Genealogist’s Path to History and why I contribute to my genealogy society’s monthly newsletter and quarterly journal.
I also like to travel and have discovered the most excellent events called meet ups. There are some trips for 2020 in the planning stages. Should be an interesting year.
Interested in history and genealogy? You can see my latest blog posts at: A Genealogist’s Path to History
Reading Through Time
January-March 2020 – Prehistory
April-June 2020 – Ancient and Biblical Times
July-September 2020 – Arthurian Britain
October-December 2020 – Middle Ages Plus Vikings
January: 19th Century Ireland
February: Crime & Mystery
March: Mothers and Daughters
April: Off With Her Head!
June: Get thee to a nunnery (or a monastery)!
August: Epidemics, Famine and Other Health Disasters
September: I’ll Trade You (Economics in a wide sense)
October: Deception: All Is Not as It Seems
November: Author Biographies
December: Predicting the Future
2020 Nonfiction Challenge
January: Prizewinners & Nominees
February: Heroes and Villains
March: Food, Glorious Food!
April: Migration, Nationalism and Identity
May: Books by Journalists
June: Science & Technology
July: The Long 18th Century (1688 – 1815)
August: Books about Books (and Words, and Language, and Libraries)
September: The Byzantines, the Ottomans and their empire(s)
October: Group Biography
November: Comfort Reading
December: As you like it
Books read in 2019
Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland by Patrick Radden Keefe
Superior: The Return of Race Science by Angela Saini
The Lost Words by Richard Macfarlane
Nature's Mutiny: How the Little Ice Age of the Long Seventeenth Century Transformed the West and Shaped the Present by Philipp Blom
The Catalogue of Shipwrecked Books by Edward Wilson-Lee
The Gods of Gotham by Lyndsay Faye
Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
Stony the Road: Reconstruction, White Supremacy, and the Rise of Jim Crow by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper by Hallie Rubenhold
The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman
Talking to Strangers by Malcolm Gladwell
The End of the Wasp Season by Denise Mina
The Last Pirate of New York: A Ghost Ship, A Killer and the Birth of a Gangster Nation by Rich Cohen
Hollow Kingdom by Kira Jane Buxton
The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead
Lampedusa by Steven Price
Ring in the Year with Murder by Auralee Wallace
Books acquired in 2019
From genealogy society December meeting:
The Listening Eye by Patricia Wentworth
Prized Possessions by L. R. Wright
Peter the Great: His Life and World by Robert K. Massie
The Talented Mr. Ripley by Patricia Highsmith
Duchess of Death: The Unauthorized Biography of Agatha Christie by Richard Hack
Closed Casket by Sophie Hannah
ER books for October and November which came in within days of each other:
It Began with a Page by Kyo Maclear
The Italian Cure by Melodie Campbell
Books picked up from the local Little Free Library:
The tyranny of story: Audience Expectations and the short screenplay by Ric Beairsto
Archaeology: A Brief Introduction by Brian M. Fagan
The Plantagenets: The Kings who Made England by Dan Jones
Jerusalem by Alan Moore (1262 pages of story, bought for group read)
Poppy Harmon Investigates by Lee Hollis
Yorkshire: A Lyrical History of England's Greatest County by Richard Morris
Stories of Women in the Middle Ages by Maria Teresa Brolis
Beyond the Northlands by Eleanor Rosamund Barraclugh
The Conscious Closet by Elizabeth L. Cline
A Diminished Roar: Winnipeg in the 1920s by Jim Blanchard
Reconstruction: A Concise History by Allen C. Guelzo
Canada's Odyssey: A Country Based on Incomplete Conquests by Peter H. Russell
The Death of Kings by Rennie Airth
Looking forward to seeiing all the good things that 2020 is going to bring you, Meg.
Hi Meg! Sounds like you have some great plans for 2020. 200 books in 2019 is amazing!!
Hi Meg -- star dropped. Looking forward to seeing you in the thread in 2020
>16 thornton37814: Good to see you here, Lori!
>17 brodiew2: Hi Brodie, I'm looking forward to seeing more of you this year!
>18 cbl_tn: Happy New Year to you too, Carrie!
>19 Berly: Hey Kim!
>20 jessibud2: I hope that 2020 is a kinder year, Shelley!
>21 DianaNL: Hi Diana, I hope that 2020 will be filled with stories!
>22 RebaRelishesReading: Good to have you following along, Reba!
Hi Meg! Just starring you so I can follow along with your adventures.
Hi Meg my dear, just starred you and will be stopping by periodically, promise.
>26 Familyhistorian:, Yes my dear, still things to put on and finish with on the 2019 thread.
Hi Meg! Just claiming my spot to follow along with you in the new year...
Well, along with the challenges it looks like I have been enticed by some group reads for 2020. So, I'm going to put this here to remind myself.
RTT: 19th C Irish: The Famine Plot
RTT Quarterly: Prehistory: Before the Dawn: Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors
Nonfiction Challenge: Prizewinners & Nominees: The Swerve
Sayers group read: Whose Body?
Year long group read: Jerusalem by Alan Moore
February group read: Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel
Hi Meg, and Happy New Year. I had to laugh as everyone seems to be taking the ROOT challenge this year. Let's see if we can make it work! And I hope to see you on the Non-Fiction challenge thread in the near future.
>32 ffortsa: Hi Judy, I've been doing the ROOT challenge since 2014 although you wouldn't think so from my bookshelves! I did manage to read 85 of them in 2019 though. Now I just have to talk myself into letting more of them go.
I find the non-fiction January category of prizewinners hard to find one for every year but I finally came up with one - The Swerve.
Happy New Thread, Meg. Come on 2020! Yep, I also hope to read more books off the shelf. I read over a 160 books and I still find this a challenge. WTH? For every 2 newer books, I should read an older title. Lets see how that works out.
>34 msf59: Good luck with getting to the older books in 2020, Mark. Maybe that will be easier to do once you retire?
Meg, your thread is off and running! I'm dropping off my star; I'll be back for more careful perusal in a couple of days.
>36 The_Hibernator: Good luck getting The Swerve off the reading stack, Rachel. I have a hard time with that myself.
>37 EBT1002: Hi Ellen, good to see you here. I hope you feel relaxed after your vacation.
>38 mdoris: I thought I would start my 2020 thread early this year instead of starting 2020 way behind, Mary. I'm looking forward to more booky talk in the coming year.
I just updated my December 2019 reads and acquisitions. I actually read more books than I acquired which would be good and sustainable if I didn't read library books and didn't keep any of my own books once I read them. Hmm.
>41 Berly: Hi Kim, you made me laugh with your just because it won a prize, doesn't always mean I'll like it. I know exactly what you mean.
Another resolution is to keep up in 2020 with all my friends on LT. Happy New Year!
Wishing you 12 months of success
52 weeks of laughter
366 days of fun (leap year!)
8,784 hours of joy
527,040 minutes of good luck
and 31,622,400 seconds of happiness!!
>49 Berly: Thanks Kim, I hope your 2020 is a good and healthy one!
Hi Meg my dear, wishing you a very Happy New Year from both of us dear friend.
It is a very soggy day/night here (78 mm in Vancouver, according to the weather news). I only ventured to the mailbox on my front porch and there was a package with a book that I ordered recently. The Death of Kings by Rennie Airth. I really should get back to that series.
Hope your parcel wasn't sodden!
Dropping a star, so I can follow you! A Coquitlam resident, yeah?
My 2020 75-book challenge thread is here. Hope you'll visit.
Happy New Year, Meg!. I hope 2020 is a great year of reading for you.
Airth has a new one coming out this year. Just saying. :)
Happy New Year, Meg!
I hope it's an excellent year of reading and having fun on LT for you.
Happy New Year, Meg. After such a stormy day yesterday, it was great to wake up to sunshine and mild temps. today.
>56 SandyAMcPherson: No sodden packages here because the mailbox is on my porch - we still get door to door delivery. Yep, I live in Coquitlam. Where abouts do you live, Sandy? Good to see that you finally decided on having a thread this year, I saw you waffling on other threads.
>57 BLBera: Happy New Year, Beth. I'm actually hoping for more writing and less reading this year. We'll see how that pans out. I saw on some thread that there was a new Airth coming out this year which is what prompted me to buy the next one that I didn't have in the series even though I haven't read the couple in front of it. I really should get to it soon.
>61 DeltaQueen50: Hi Judy, I couldn't believe the sunshine when I woke up. I felt that we were going to float away yesterday the rain was coming down so hard. On the news the weather person said that Vancouver got 78 mm of rain - we probably got more where I am. We always get more! I hope you had a great New Year!
After yesterday's weather bringing so much heavy rain that it felt like time to get out the arc, today started with sunshine and mild weather. There were lots of happy people on the path along the Coquitlam River. I also saw a man in a kayak, a guy with a canoe and the regular fishermen and dogs etc.
>64 Familyhistorian: An LT addict I am!
I realized, as I was reading the end of December remarks on the threads, how much I liked having a place to post *my* photos and semi-witty sayings, tell stories and generally hang out. It wouldn't be as compelling with no 'home' of my own.
I think I was also waffling because I let myself get too involved in reading all the threads everyday instead of actually reading. So I'm going to skim the threads more for book discussions and confine my online thread conversation time to "after dinner - before bed".
Yeah, I know that probably won't work... ha ha ha
>71 SandyAMcPherson: It is great to have people who read the stuff you put up but, you're right, it can be a big time sink but really, for the time put in, I feel I get a lot out of reading the threads on LT and, when they happen, in-person meet ups are so much fun. LTers actually exist and they are just as easy to talk to in person. It also means that you find out about the best reads which can be a good and bad thing.
>74 jessibud2: I've heard online friends called "virtual friends" before but not "imaginary friends", Shelley. But maybe this was in the early days of the internet when virtual was not a term that was used.
>75 paulstalder: Thanks Paul, good to see you here.
>76 Carmenere: Hi Lynda, I hope your 2020 is full of good reads!
>77 karenmarie: Good to hear about The Swerve, Karen. I haven't actually cracked the covers of any of my January reads yet, including the Wimsey because I am still working on my library books from last year. I should get into them soon.
>78 ronincats: Happy New Year, Roni!
1. The Second Sleep by Robert Harris
A young priest, Father Fairfax, was sent to an out of the way village to perform the burial service for the village priest. He thought it would be a quick trip, well as quick as any trip was when the horse was the main means of transport. Things didn’t turn out as Fairfax planned. It seems that the former village priest was indulging in the forbidden activity of digging up artifacts from the past. Just what had he found and did it lead to his death?
This was an interesting mashup of historic adventure and futuristic novel. It wasn’t quite what I was expecting but a page turner all the same. I do have reservations about the ending though.
>81 Familyhistorian: BB! My library has got an audio copy. Sounds like something for me to listen to.
Wishing you a lovely day.
>74 jessibud2:, >73 Familyhistorian: I totally agree, I feel I get a lot out of reading the threads on LT as well.
And one of these days, perhaps I'll be in the right time/place to attend one of the meet ups.
>81 Familyhistorian: Woah! What a teaser! I was getting good and convinced here was a book bullet, then I got to "...reservations about the ending though." Can you expand a little bit, without giving away details? Is the story ruined? After a night's sleep, are you thinking back and feeling disappointed? Would you rate the story with more than 3 stars?
Hmm, I started The Second Sleep and read about half when I sort of put it down and didn't think to pick it up again until the library loan was over. I really enjoyed Harris's novels about ancient Rome, but this one just didn't grab me. I didn't care for any of the characters, and I thought it dragged a bit, though the twist was interesting. Not sure if I'll borrow it again and try to finish it.
>81 Familyhistorian: I recently read this one as well, Meg, and while Harris kept me turning the pages, in the end it was just an OK read for me. I think there was just too much unresolved. I've read post-apocalyptic novels that are much better.
>83 SandyAMcPherson: I haven't attended any of the major meet ups, Sandy, although there were 4 LTers in the group when we met up in NYC. Mostly I meet up with one LTer at a time when travelling.
About The Second Sleep, it is hard for me to give it a rating because I don't rate the books that I read but in a scale of 1 to 5 it would rate above a 3 (whatever that means). I wasn't disappointed in the ending really I just like endings to be happy and clear and that one didn't tick the box.
>85 Storeetllr: I haven't read anything else by Harris, Mary. I was tempted to put it down around the time of the twist because it wasn't what I expected and it did drag a bit in the middle but got exciting as the action picked up in the last third. Books about ancient Rome sound interesting. I should see if my library has some of them.
2. Gods and Beasts by Denise Mina
I went, once again, to the gritty streets of Glasgow to visit with Alex Morrow and her fellow polis. Gods and Beasts was the third book in the series and once again served up a page turning mystery confused by mixed motives and complicated by police corruption and Alex’ own thorny background. It was another great entry in the series.
Happy New Year and best wishes for 2020, Meg! Lovely to read that the boaters were out on the Coquitlam River on the first day of 2020. I admit I am a bit of a wimp and probably won't be venturing back out on the water myself until early April.
>88 Familyhistorian: Thanks for the clarification. I'm an old-fashioned "let's tick the happily ever after box" person myself.
>90 Familyhistorian: My favorite was his first, Pompeii, tho I enjoyed the series (trilogy?) centering on the life of Cicero.
>93 lkernagh: To be fair the guy in the kayak was stopped and the man with the canoe was taking it out of the water. I think it was colder than they thought, Lori. But it was a nice day, much better than on New Years Eve. I hope that you had a good New Years.
>94 SandyAMcPherson: No problem, Sandy. I do prefer a happy ending, there are enough sad ones to deal with in real life.
>96 richardderus: I liked my next read as well, Richard. A few other people must have as well because it was on the Giller short list.
>97 EBT1002: There are so many series, Ellen, and there seem to be more all the time. I didn't need another one but after I saw Denise Mina at the writer's conference in October I just had to add one of her series to my reading. I really enjoy the Alex Morrow series.
>102 Storeetllr: Ah, you like the historicals. I like them as well, but I really like reading about WWII as well especially England during that time period.
I bet they are good. Harris is a good writer, and I loved his novels on ancient Rome. I just wasn't able to connect with The Second Sleep. Might have been my mood at the time, because it's a genre I do like.
3. Small Game Hunting at the Local Coward Gun Club by Megan Gail Coles
At first, I was put off by the different style of Small Game Hunting at the Local Coward Gun Club but it grew on me. It really worked in this story that covered one day in St. John’s, Nfld. A lot of the action centred around The Hazel, a local restaurant, and the only one still open to serve the Valentine’s Day crowd as a long day turned into a stormy, blustery night.
It was written in the vernacular in a way that the reader was privy to the back stories of the characters showing the gritty lives and scary reality of those who were looked down upon and the arrogance of those who felt they were on top. It was also a story of relationships, the good the bad and the ugly. I can see why it was nominated for the Giller.
>105 Storeetllr: Maybe it was because it seemed to start as one type of story but actually was another.
Maybe. Also because I just didn't feel in sympathy with any of the characters.
>87 Familyhistorian: As soon as it is back in the library. Wishing you a lovely weekend.
Wow, yet another person who's on their third book of the year, 4 days in. How do you do it? :)
You are off to a great start in your new decade of reading, Meg. I am still recovering from our week of hosting the Family Christmas. I look forward to following you on your books and travels. I especially like your pictures of the lovely city walks you take. Cute shiny deer in the topper image.
>112 The_Hibernator: Ha, well I didn't start reading them in 2020, Rachel. I started a lot of reads towards the end of December and have to get them read, they are library holds with people waiting
>113 Donna828: Hi Donna, the city always has a great light display in the park which is in walking distance from where I am. I hope you are relaxing after all your hosting.
4. Sorry I'm Late: I Didn't Want to Come by Jessica Pan
Things weren’t working for Jessica. She had a husband and worked freelance while living in London so that was good but all the friends she had made while she was there had moved away. She had no one to hang out with. She wanted that but she was a shy introvert, how could she make new friends? She resolved to spend a year going out of her comfort zone, trying to act like an extrovert to see if she could do it and if she could make friends.
She also decided that she was going to overcome of her fears which led her to public speaking, improv and stand up comedy. Sounds a bit extreme to me but I bet she had to go a bit over the top to sell her book proposal. Her conclusions after putting herself through a year long challenge were enlightening, almost enough to make a reading introvert step out of their own comfort zone.
>118 Familyhistorian: The title of the book made me laugh.
Have a nice Sunday
Hi Meg, I'm still finding people on the threads. Is it ok to say happy new year and happy reading for 2020?
>118 Familyhistorian: I have this in the pile from the library, but other books have intervened. The improv and stand up thing makes me shudder. My brother did it for a while and some of his stories about reactions of the audience, what it feels like to stand there as no one laughs.... ack. I suspect I will read those bits through my fingers.
>118 Familyhistorian: We are neck and neck with 4 books each so far this year. I am enjoying typing things like that, Megan, because I probably won't be able to much longer!
Have a great Sunday.
>119 richardderus: It was a good one, Richard, but probably not a book to everyone's taste. Then again, what book is?
>120 figsfromthistle: It is a very descriptive title, isn't it? Have a great Sunday, Anita!
>121 charl08: I think it is fine to give New Years wishes to people as you find them, Charlotte. I takes a while with the initial 75ers flurry. I still haven't found them all and only caught up with you yesterday.
Actually, it wasn't as bad as you think as the writer's reaction was one I could imagine for myself and I was just so glad that she was able to pull it off. Gave me a bit of hope, really.
>122 msf59: Hi Mark, not quite raining here but threatening after a morning where it poured. We actually saw a bit of the sun yesterday and I had a chance to walk out in it. The Second Sleep was good but, to my mind, Small Game Hunting was better as it captured the voice and reality of Newfoundlanders as I think of them. It actually reminded me of my misspent youth among displaced Cape Bretoners.
>123 PaulCranswick: You are off to an impressive start, Paul. I hope you are able to retain some of that reading mojo through the month. I am currently avoiding reviewing my 5th book and hoping to brave the weather to find more books at the library. Not that I need more books!
I'm off to the library to deal with my library holds. It looks like I have more to drop off than pick up, which is good. Life is getting back to normal after the Christmas season lull. I did my first volunteer gig of the year at the BCGS library yesterday and can see that my calendar is full of meetings and webinars for the coming week. All I wish is that the graphic artist who is doing the art for the posters for our next display would get back to me so that we can get that project back on track. Fingers crossed that nothing has happened to him and that he was just ignoring my emails for the festive season.
Meg, you are cruising already! I have had Small Game Hunting at the Local Coward Gun Club on my wish list since it was nominated for the Giller; your review suggests that I should keep it in my sights. I think I'll add it to my tentative Thingaversary Ten purchase list.
>131 thornton37814: It is impossible to keep up with the threads, Lori. I am finding it hard to even try.
>134 kidzdoc: Hi Darryl, good to see you here. I hope that you have had some time for reading in 2020 already.
5. Five Days Gone: The Mystery of My Mother's Disappearance as a Child by Laura Cumming
I love a good mystery and real-life ones are even better. While true-life mysteries don’t result in pat answers tying up all the threads, it is fascinating to see what avenues the researchers have chosen, the conclusions they come to and the things they will never know. So, it was with Laura Cummings tale of her mother’s early life as an adoptee with a hidden past. Well, at least a past that was hidden from her although it seemed that there was a whole village that knew more about her past than she did.
The book revolved around the relationships of the people involved. There were truly many and varied lies and secrets that people hid behind making it difficult to find the truth and to know what a person’s actions meant when it came to their feelings for others. This was even more difficult when trying to uncover the truth about the past although time can lend perspective as the author shows.
Ack, everything is starting up at once. I carefully selected 2 Future Learn courses that didn't overlap so of course they changed the timing and they both start this week. Meetings are also starting up because I have 4 this week, although I might not make it to the Friday book club meeting if it snows like they are predicting. I also heard from the graphic artist who is working on the posters for PoCo Heritage's next exhibit, so will be getting back to working on the words for the posters when he gets the new drafts to me, too bad it couldn't have been in the lull over the Christmas season. Guess my reading will be slowing down.
>136 Familyhistorian: We are reading that in my RL book club in May. But in the U.K. it is called On Chapel Sands: My Mother and Other Missing Persons. At least I assume it's the same book, I can't imagine that she wrote two on exactly the same subject. I have to say I prefer the U.K. title though - leaves a bit more to the imagination.
>137 Familyhistorian: Been there, done that and hated that level of commitment and scheduling, especially when we still had a kid at home who had her activities as well.
The Man and I both had demanding jobs and now I look back and wonder at our sanity! We coped by just giving up a lot of extra occupations. Probably not the best solution but I could never seem to get enough sleep.
Good luck with all your plans.
Morning, Meg! Dropping a star. Five books already - you are off and running!
>140 SandDune: It has to be the same book, Rhian. Her mother was brought up in Chapel St. Leonards and much of the action in the book relates to things that happened there. I like the UK title best too, but I think they needed something that would grab non UK readers who would have no idea where Chapel Sands are. Its a good one. I hope you enjoy it.
>141 SandyAMcPherson: I like all the things that I do, I just wish that they didn't come in bunches like that, Sandy, especially as the last few weeks I was just marking time while everyone else did the Christmas season thing. It felt extra long this year.
>142 Crazymamie: It's good to see you posting again, Mamie. Actually it is 7 books now, I just haven't gotten around to writing about the last 2.
Hi Meg, I thought I better drop by and explain my forecast of snow for us over on Mark's thread. My husband showed me an internet forecast a couple of days ago that predicted snow falling here starting on Thursday evening and continuing for a few days - but I haven't heard anything more about it so I am being to think it's all hogwash! I will be perfectly happy if we see no snow this year!
Hi Meg! Congrats on so many books so early in the year. I know you started them over the holidays, but still...
>81 Familyhistorian: My first BB of the year. Sounds wonderful. I’ve read two others by Harris – Fatherland and Pompeii. My library doesn’t have The Second Sleep yet, more’s the pity. And I have no willpower, so just bought it.
>113 Donna828: I’m just starting to recover from Christmas – daughter left yesterday after 3 ½ weeks at home. At least all the Christmas stuff is put away.
Bunched up commitments - you've gotten that with a vengeance.
>143 Familyhistorian: To be honest, I don't think any U.K. readers would know where Chapel Sands were either! I'd certainly never heard of them before.
>137 Familyhistorian: Yikes, it looks as if 2020 is off to a busy start! Try to save a little time for your books. They can be so relaxing - like a gentle massage.
>146 DeltaQueen50: I would be happy with no snow as well, Judy, but the weather person on Global was predicting snow on Friday, but then the prediction for today was also colder than it is so maybe it will just be more rain. I hope so. I don't drive in the snow around here much because of the hills.
>147 karenmarie: I've actually finished more books than I've posted, Karen, so the reading is going well. I hope you enjoy The Second Sleep.
The commitments are more bunched up than I would like them and I tried to arrange it so that wouldn't happen but a lot of that was taken out of my hands. I did finally hear from the graphic artist and hope to get something from him soon so that I can do the words for the posters and get that part of project out of the way. It is always pretty intense when we are getting towards the end of setting up a new exhibit. It is supposed to be done by February 5.
>148 SandDune: Well, at least the name isn't very foreign sounding for the UK, Rhian. Chapel Sands is close to Skagness.
>149 Carmenere: Hi Lynda, it seems like everyone wants to get into it this week after a Christmas season that seemed extra long because of the way the main days landed on Wednesdays. There will still be reading as I get caught up with other stuff, just not quite as much.
6. A Useful Woman by Darcie Wilde
Roselind Thorne was once a debutant who was included in the privileged few young women who were allowed into Alamack’s. But her family’s fortunes and reputations suffered a set back when her father absconded with her sister just ahead of financial ruin. Now Rosalind makes her living on the fringes of the ton, helping society’s hostesses.
Her godmother, Lady Blanchard, was one of Alamack’s powerful patronesses, which was why Rosalind was there looking for her when she stumbled across a body, in a pool of blood, in the ballroom where she had once danced. What was a young lady to do but to hunt down the murderer?
What a deliciously involved mystery this was. The society details were fun as was the Bow Street runner investigator. All of it was tangled up with the feelings Rosalind still had for her old beau, who, since the death of his older brother, had now become a lord. So, will Rosalind end up with the investigator or the society guy? Not so fast, reader, this is a series, after all.
>154 Familyhistorian: And I like the sound of this - adding it to the wishlist.
>154 Familyhistorian: - This one was on my radar, but it sounds like I should get to it sooner rather than later!
>154 Familyhistorian: It's really good, Katie, and just what you need, another series.
>159 Crazymamie: Ooh, did I get you with a BB, Mamie? To be fair, I'm just passing on the BB that I got from Micky.
>154 Familyhistorian: YOu remind me that I really enjoyed this book and need to order the next two from the library, Meg!
>154 Familyhistorian:, Arrrgh! A BB!
And a series as well. Lots of scope for reading this winter.... hmmm, actually, looking at myTBR/WL --- this YEAR!
Hi Meg! Is Future Learn another MOOC set? I haven't heard of that one. I sign up for a MOOC every once in a while, but remember that I can't keep up with them as I need to work at my own pace what with the baby around. So I just read.
>162 ronincats: It was good, wasn't it Roni? Good to know that there are two more of them to follow.
>163 SandyAMcPherson: It went down real easy, Sandy. It probably won't take you long to read it.
>164 The_Hibernator: I had to look up MOOC. I don't think they are affiliated. Future Learn courses are usually about 4 weeks long sometimes a bit longer. There is a time limit to take them - usually twice the length of the course. There are more serious courses and general interest ones. I am currently taking one on forensic psychology and one on writing fiction. They each take about 3 hours a week.
I finally got my Santa Thing books! It would have been nice to get them for Christmas which is why I asked for them to be selected from Amazon. I have no idea why they came from Book Depository in England but it explains the delay in me receiving them. At least I didn't have to wait until March like the last time when I made the mistake of asking for them from Book Depository.
Hi Meg. of those 4, I have only read one, the one by Anne Fadiman and it was excellent!
>168 Familyhistorian: I love gazing at a stack of books! They hold potential, insights, different perspectives, new ideas....I could go on and on.....but my coffees getting cold. Enjoy your books!
I'm glad to see The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down in your stack of SantaThing books. It's one of my all time favorite nonfiction books, and one of very few that I've read twice. I know that the physician assistant program at Emory University, where I gave lectures for a few years, requires its students to read it, and I suspect that other PA programs and medical schools do as well.
>170 Carmenere: Thanks Lynda, it was a surprise to get them yesterday. I was on my way out the door when the post lady knocked. She gets a kick out of handing me books, calls me "her reader."
>171 kidzdoc: That sounds like a very important book, Darryl. I will have to get it into the rotation asap.
>172 richardderus: I haven't read anything by Monica Wood nor have I heard of her, Richard. It's good to get a glowing review on her writing.
7. From Hell by Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell
Like many, I am drawn to stories about Jack the Ripper. The unsolved crimes and their continued mystery is one part of the fascination but I also like to read about the parts of London where my ancestors would have lived. As From Hell was a graphic novel, I was able to see this area more clearly than when I read other books about the crimes. It was a very interesting and lengthy story about the events surrounding the murders.
As an added bonus, I recognized one of the characters depicted as a distant relation. Dr. James Hinton appears in the novel as a friend of the purported murder. This was a huge surprise as it was part of my paternal line who lived in the East End and the Hinton’s are a collateral line on my maternal side. If the information about them in the book is to be believed, Dr. James and his son had some odd ideas. As there are references given in the Appendices, it looks like I have research to do.
Hi Meg! It looks like you've had some good finishes already. I saw Second Sleep at the library before Christmas but didn't pick it up, and now of course there are about a million reserves for it. What was I thinking?!
I keep seeing Denise Mina's name, so I think I'm going to have to try one of hers. Uh-oh, another series...
I hope your Fitbit is charged, because you never know who you might see out and about in Canada now. It could be a great opportunity to get some steps in :-)
Hello Family Historian! Just dropping to wave and say hi. Have a great day!
>168 Familyhistorian: I have had trouble both giving and receiving my secret santas this year. Hope that the next week will sort things out both ways.
Have a lovely Sunday, Meg.
>178 susanj67: Ha, I doubt if I will see any unlikely persons around here, Susan. Word is that their Canadian base will be over on Vancouver Island, probably over 200 kilometres from here.
Too bad about not knowing to pick up The Second Sleep when you saw it. Do check out Denise Mina's books. I had to read them after hearing her speak.
>179 jnwelch: A Useful Woman was really good, Joe, but, just to let you know it is the first book in a series. I'm very happy about that! So I had to look up Fadiman's Ex Libris since you so thoughtfully placed that BB on my thread. The library review got me too, especially when it said she:
"once found herself poring over her roommate's 1974 Toyota Corolla manual because it was the only written material in the apartment that she had not read at least twice."
As someone who, as a child, used to read the cereal packages on the breakfast table when told I wasn't allowed to read my book at the table, I could relate. Onto the wish list it goes.
>180 EBT1002: It is a fun read, Ellen. It will definitely lighten a mood, perhaps something that might come in handy given your job.
>181 brodiew2: I hope you are having a great Sunday, Brodie, and get less snow than they are predicting here just to the north of you.
>182 PaulCranswick: When I saw that the Santa Thing books came from Book Depository I was actually kind of surprised that I got them so soon, Paul. The only time I actually choose that book seller for my picks, it took until March to receive them. I hope your books show up soon.
8. Lumberjanes: Beware the Kitty Holy by Shannon Waters, Grace Ellis, Noelle Stevenson & Brooke Allen
And now for a lighter, more entertaining graphic novel I picked up Lumberjanes: Beware the Kitten Holy the first in the Lumberjanes series of graphic novels. It was great fun following the adventures that this group of misfit campers got into once they ditched their counsellor. I can’t wait to find out what they get into next now that their counsellor is on their side.
The end of my week got super busy, I was running out of time to do everything so I skipped book club Friday night to catch up on some course work and to get my blog post done. I am currently looking into a Nova Scotia family line in a series of posts. It is at A Genealogist’s Path to History.
Saturday was full, with the wrap up of our Christmas Tree festival at PoCo Heritage, followed by a bit of a farewell party for our employee. She is moving on to bigger and better things. I had to leave early so I could meet up with a friend for dinner and a movie. We saw Little Women. I found it a bit hard to follow since I never read the book and the story line of the movie jumped back and forth in time.
I'm glad that I went out to the grocery store today because it looks like getting around will be a challenge in the coming week. A lot more snow fell at the end of today covering everything I can see out my windows.
9. Finding Lady Enderly by Joanna Davidson Politano
Perhaps if I had read Finding Lady Enderly straight through, the action would have drawn me more quickly through the book. The story of a rag woman taken off the street to impersonate a lady in a remote estate was an intriguing one. The dramatis personae were interesting but the action and the main character’s soul searching took a bit too long for this reader and I had a bit of difficulty with her epiphany at the end.
Looks like our snow has stopped for a bit. I just got in from digging out around my car. I wonder if we actually have snow removal for our parking lot this year?
10. A Perilous Undertaking by Deanna Raybourn
Veronica Speedwell was the unacknowledged by-blow of one of the royals which, at one point, put her life in danger. But that was in the past, in this story one of Victoria’s daughters was looking for her help to save Miles Ramsworth, a member of society heavily into the art world. Ramsworth had been found guilty of murdering his mistress and the Princess Louise wanted Veronica to find evidence to disprove it.
Of course, Veronica dragged her partner, the disreputable Stoker, into the mystery which led them into the world of art and high society, a world filled with decadence and inflated egos. It was all complicated by Veronica and Stoker’s past and current relationships with the upper echelons of the police and with Stoker’s brothers, the Tempelton-Vanes, members of the aristocracy trying to bring him back into the fold. All in all A Perilous Undertaking was a page turner of a read.
Even though I did some shoveling last night I decided to walk over to Port Coquitlam this morning. It is about a 45 minute walk on a good day. This was not a good day. Some of the sidewalks were ok and some were a bit of a struggle but it was crossing the streets that was treacherous. Our city hadn't plowed them in our area. I got to one crossing and there was a man down on his knees on the road, groping around on the ground. He was on the street close to the sidewalk. I thought at first that he was looking for a contact or something but it turned out that he had fallen and another man and I helped him up. Once I crossed the boundary into Port Coquitlam the streets were so well plowed I could see the pavement.
>177 Familyhistorian: I am a fan of From Hell but I thought the movie version was botched. A few years ago while visiting London we noticed a Jack the Ripper walking tour and only then realized how close we had been staying to the sites of the murders. Didn't have time for the walking tour but I think it would have been interesting.
>168 Familyhistorian: Nice, Santa Thing haul, Meg. I loved the Fadiman book and I have been meaning to get to Million Boy. I am glad Book Depository delivers internationally but if you don't get the order in, weeks before Christmas, you will probably be waiting.
>197 msf59: It is a good book haul, isn't it, Mark? I am so glad to have it because now I can buy books again. I was having a hard time second guessing what my Santa Thing would get me. Book Depository wasn't my choice. I know that it takes a long time for shipments to come in from them, extra long where we are, I think. I asked for them to come from Amazon.
I can pretty much guarantee you will love Ex Libris, Meg. I have bought copies of it for all the readers in my family.
Happy New Year! I figure I will keep saying that until at least February :)
>2 Familyhistorian: HI Meg! Meet ups for 2020! I hope to be able to attend some of them. I hope there will be a thread which lets us know where and when.
>199 Familyhistorian: How lovely!
Happy Tuesday in some smallish span of hours.
>199 Familyhistorian: Lovely walk, but I'm shivering just thinking about it!
>199 Familyhistorian: - Beautiful shot of the wintery scene!
Sidewalks are rather treacherous here in Victoria as well. Luckily, I don't have to cross too many streets to get to and from work, as those are also slippery.
>201 Whisper1: Have there been threads for meet ups in the past, Linda? All the meet ups I have attended have been fairly small and usually happen because I am travelling somewhere and there are other 75ers there. Meet ups are great fun, however they happen.
>202 richardderus: It looks different with snow on the trees (and no fisher people, for a change). Your span of hours until Tuesday is smaller than mine, Richard, so happy Tuesday to you!
>203 thornton37814: It was cold, Lori, and icy in places too. Colder than we are used to here but nothing compared to the temperatures in places like Montreal and Calgary.
>204 Berly: Going to bookstores was a challenge while I was waiting, Kim. I ended up with more nonfiction books than usual. I read my first Lumberjanes and now I want to read another, guess that makes me a fan. I'm just hoping it warms up soon and the snow disappears quickly!
>206 lkernagh: I know that people in the rest of Canada laugh at us in the snow, Lori, but really, I've lived in places that get lots of snow and they have the snow removal down pat so it is rarely hazardous to walk for as long as it is here. Stay safe!
>208 Familyhistorian: Yes, there were threads regarding meet ups. It is a great way to spend time with people whose threads you may not have visited, and now you are friends!
I loved The Spirit Catches You, too, when I finally read it a couple of years ago.
At our daughter's urging, we took the Jack the Ripper walking tour in London on a visit there, and we got a kick out of it. The tour guide had written a book about Jack, so he was plenty knowledgeable. I'm pretty sure it was sponsored by the "London Walks" organization - we always do a least a couple of their many tours whenever we go there.
>214 Whisper1: I must have missed those meet up threads, Linda. Were they part of the 75ers threads?
>215 jnwelch: The Spirit Catches You has a lot of readers saying good things about it, Joe. Maybe I should get to it sooner rather than later.
A Jack the Ripper tour sounds like something Becca would be into. Good to know that you enjoyed it too. I'll have to look into the "London Walks" tours. I've never gone on an official walk tour in London although Susan and I did see a lot if the city when I was there and I do remember parts of the tour my Dad, a native Londoner, took us on over 50 years ago.
>212 Familyhistorian: - I agree. Snow removal is a bit dodgy here on the coast, isn't it. Everyone hoping that it is just a "one-day" thing and will melt (or be washed away by rain). ;-) Sidewalks were pretty good this morning. Better than yesterday, anyways. Fluffy stuff continues to fall so at work our supervisor has already given the "if you need to leave early to get home safe" speech, but the weather forecast so far has this looking like a temporary thing and we will be back to warmer temps (and the soggy rain) once again.
>218 lkernagh: I wish they were talking about rain, Lori, but I think there is more snow on the way before we get back to the regular rain. I just hope that everything goes away soon.
We spent a few hours taking this tree apart today. The trunk is paper stuffed into a wire armature. You never know what you will be needed to do as a museum volunteer!
This was what was happening on the other side, Mark. Can you see the small birds flitting around the metal fish?
>223 jessibud2: The tree was part of our last display, Shelley, and had been up for about a year and a half. It was built around a post so there was no way to save it.
We have lots more snow than that now. It dumped more on us last night and I had to clear about another 6 or 7 inches off my car. I went for a walk to the store and there were lots of cars spinning and fishtailing and I saw a couple stuck on corners. Most routes don't get plowed until much later after a snowfall.
>224 Familyhistorian: - Your weather made our news tonight, Meg! Grass is all I still see on my lawn and it was 3C today but we are expecting snow overnight and a drastic drop in temps. But you poor BCers just aren't used to (or equipped for) such WINTER! And I can't even begin to imagine the temps in Alberta!! EEk
>225 jessibud2: I'm not surprised our weather made the news, Shelley. A lot of thinks are at a standstill. The snow is light and fluffy because the temperatures are colder than normal. Our snow is usually wet and heavy, just on the cusp of being rain. We don't have enough snow clearing equipment and the buses and skytrain aren't doing well. There are supposed to be high winds. All ferries were cancelled as of 3:00 pm and they are talking about closing down the bridges.
On an up note, we actually have snow plows working in our parking lot although, after the last snow people went out and shoveled out quadrant.
In northern BC there were temperatures of -50 C and lower. I can't imagine living with that.
That is quite a lot of snow for your neck of the woods, Meg. Doubt you'd swap it for our temperatures though. -38C with the windchill out there today.
I have an idea --- let's us all find a toasty warm place "down south" bring our TBR stacks and share the rent and cooking! We can maybe be where there's actually swimming temperature waters! And reading ~ outside~ with no bugs to bite us...
>228 MickyFine: Hi Micky, much more snow than we are used to and lots of things just shut down yesterday but it is starting to warm up, so no, you can keep your -38C. I don't want to experience that again which is why I moved back here rather than staying in Calgary. Just lasted one winter there. I hope it warms up for you soon.
Meg, we are still at +3C and sunny, as I type this. But warnings of snow and a drastic drop in temps are still all over the news. Hard to know what to believe.
>229 SandyAMcPherson: I lived that dream once when I was way younger. It was January in Nova Scotia (very long winters there.) We packed up all our stuff and 6 of us went to stay in a house my folks had in Florida. I don't remember taking stacks of books, though, just two diving tanks on the roof rack. It didn't turn out like we expected but it was quite the adventure.
I think I'll add in more comfort into this daydream. I'm not in my 20s any more. Have fun daydreaming, Sandy.
11. Whose Body? by Dorothy L. Sayers
I’m doing a reread of the Lord Peter Wimsey novels with the group. It was fun to revisit Whose Body?, I didn’t realize that it was the first in the series before the group reads. No doubt I read the series out of order before.
It was a good introduction to the main characters, at least the male ones, and a good puzzle. It helped that I didn’t remember the murderer. It was great fun to revisit this time between the wars and see the how the characters moved around town and society. There was class consciousness and casual prejudice which were very much a part of society at the time. So, while it was fun to visit and puzzle my head over the mystery, I am happy not to actually be living during that time period.
>233 Familyhistorian: I love the Lord Peter Wimsey books. I need to re-read them (again)!
>234 lkernagh: Is it more than you have, Lori? I was hoping this was the end of it but they are predicting more for Friday and maybe even Saturday.
>235 alcottacre: The 2020 Category Challenge is doing a group read of the Lord Peter Wimsey books, Stasia. I'm using that as my inspiration and also to see the series in order. The January thread is here https://www.librarything.com/topic/314832
ETA There is also a link to YouTube renditions of the plots among the posts.
>236 Familyhistorian: - Maybe... not too sure. Wednesday morning was the worst of it for Victoria and we had about 1 ft of snow on the ground in the Inner Harbour area. 80% of that has now melted, but it is the darn wind storms. We are supposed to have another one this evening.
This topic was continued by Familyhistorian Takes Her Reading into 2020 - part 2.
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