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Familyhistorian Takes Her Reading into 2020 - part 4

75 Books Challenge for 2020

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Edited: Feb 25, 5:58pm Top

The sign inviting visitors in to see PoCo Heritage’s exhibit

One of the exhibit’s graphic novel style posters (a bit yellow looking because of the lighting)

Edited: Mar 31, 12:57am Top

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.

Edited: Mar 31, 1:00am Top


My latest blog posts are continuing to take me through Nova Scotia history. You can see them at: A Genealogist’s Path to History

Edited: Mar 31, 1:02am Top

Little Free Library

Books culled in 2020

January - 5

February - 3

March - 3

Edited: Mar 31, 1:03am Top


Reading Through Time


January-March 2020 – Prehistory - Before the Dawn: Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors by Nicholas Wade - DONE
April-June 2020 – Ancient and Biblical Times
July-September 2020 – Arthurian Britain
October-December 2020 – Middle Ages Plus Vikings


January: 19th Century Ireland - The Famine Plot: England's Role in Ireland's Greatest Tragedy by Tim Pat Coogan - DONE
February: Crime & Mystery - The Cold Cold Ground by Adrian McKinty - DONE - Absolution by Murder by Peter Tremayne - DONE - The Axeman's Jazz by Julie Smith - DONE
March: Mothers and Daughters
April: Off With Her Head!
May: Explorers
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 - From Hell by Alan Moore - DONE - The Swerve: How the World Became Modern by Stephen Greenblatt - DONE
February: Heroes and Villains - The Tartan Pimpernel by Donald Caskie - DONE
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

Edited: Mar 31, 1:05am Top

Books read in 2020

Books acquired in 2020

Edited: Feb 25, 6:11pm Top

Books read in 2020


The Second Sleep by Robert Harris
Gods and Beasts by Denise Mina
Small Game Hunting at the Local Coward Gun Club by Megan Gail Coles
Sorry I’m Late: I Didn’t Want to Come by Jessica Pan
Five Days Gone: The Mystery of My Mother’s Disappearance as a Child by Laura Cumming
A Useful Woman by Darcie Wilde
From Hell by Alan Moore
Lumberjanes: Beware the Kitten Holy by Shannon Waters, Grace Ellis, Noelle Stevenson & Brooke Allen
Finding Lady Enderly by Joanna Davidson Politano
A Perilous Undertaking by Deanna Raybourn
Whose Body? by Dorothy L. Sayers
The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai
An Unhallowed Grave by Kate Ellis
The Swerve: How the World Became Modern by Stephen Greenblatt
Connections in Death by J.D. Robb
A Dedicated Man by Peter Robinson
The Devil in the Marshalsea by Antonia Hodgson
Catfishing on Catnet by Naomi Kritzer
Clue by Paul Allor
Investing in Murder by EJ Lister
The Famine Plot: England’s Role in Ireland's Greatest Tragedy by Tim Pat Coogan
It Began with a Page: How Gyo Fujikawa Drew the Way by Kyo Maclear and Julie Morstad
Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass by Steve Pugh
The Gold Pawn by L.A. Chandlar
Silent Melody by Mary Balogh


The Tatooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris
Don’t You Forget About Me by Mhairi McFarlane
Still Waters by Viveca Stein
The Cold Cold Ground by Adrian McKinty
Maggy Garrisson by Lewis Trondhei and Stephanie Oiry
Clouds of Witness by Dorothy L. Sayers
Night Boat to Tangier by Kevin Barry
A Necessary End by Peter Robinson
The Withdrawing Room by Charlotte MacLeod
Real Tigers by Mick Herron
Dreams from My Father by Barack Obama
A Perfect Match by Jill McGown

Edited: Feb 25, 6:13pm Top


Feb 25, 6:17pm Top

Happy new thread, Meg!

Feb 25, 6:31pm Top

Happy new thread, Meg. The posters look great. But, I can't read the small print, so please tell: what are the F words??? Inquiring minds need to know... ;-)

Feb 25, 6:39pm Top

Happy New Thread, Meg. I like the GN poster exhibit, at the top. Looks and sounds very cool.

Feb 25, 6:50pm Top

Happy new one!

Feb 25, 7:06pm Top

Happy new thread!

Feb 25, 7:49pm Top

>10 thornton37814: Thanks Lori!

>11 jessibud2: Hi Shelley, the person on the poster is Mayor Arthur Mars who was the mayor of Port Coquitlam from 1919 to 1924 and it is the history of those years that the exhibit is about. First there was the flu pandemic of 1918 - 1919, the following year a fire (that took out most of downtown and started in the fire hall), the year after that a flood and then, of course, potential financial ruin. So F Words = flu, fire, flood, financial ruin.

Feb 25, 7:52pm Top

>12 msf59: Thanks Mark, there has been a lot more reading of posters than usual in the museum with the GN posters. We're hoping that people will think it is cool.

>13 figsfromthistle: Thanks Anita!

>14 quondame: Thanks Susan!

Feb 25, 7:58pm Top

Hi... I haven't visited for awhile and just discovered, New Thread!
How's your spring flower season treating you? I hope you'll post some more photos.
Your exhibit looks very interesting, btw.

Feb 25, 8:26pm Top

Happy new thread Meg. Great posters!

Edited: Feb 25, 8:59pm Top

>15 Familyhistorian: - Aw, I see. A fire that started in a fire hall? Now, there's an interesting twist! I imagine that the reaction to all those F words was: freakout!

Sounds like a great exhibit.

Edited to add that I just thought of another F that Port Coquitlam is famous for, a much better F: Fox (Terry Fox). And while he isn't as *ancient* history as the rest of the exhibit, it boggles the mind that his Marathon of Hope was 40 years ago!! How is that possible? I moved to Toronto that very Labour Day weekend in 1980 that he had to stop the run. It was so heartbreaking.

Feb 25, 9:56pm Top

>17 SandyAMcPherson: Hi Sandy, I was just out taking more spring flower pics today - before the rain showed up too. I'll have to get some off my phone and on here soon. Thanks re the exhibit.

Feb 25, 9:58pm Top

>18 mdoris: Thanks Mary. We are hoping for a good reaction to the posters. Now we are working on adapting them into a book.

Feb 25, 10:02pm Top

>19 jessibud2: Yeah, we played up that interesting fire twist, Shelley. I know I snickered when I found out about it. Terry Fox does show up on the posters that conclude the story.

Feb 25, 10:07pm Top

Hi Meg! Happy new thread.

Feb 26, 12:22am Top

Congrats on your shiny new thread.

Feb 26, 12:35am Top

>23 richardderus: Thanks Richard!

>24 Ameise1: Thanks Barbara!

Feb 26, 8:12am Top

Happy new thread, Meg!

The museum posters look great.

Feb 26, 1:11pm Top

>26 katiekrug: Hi Katie, thanks for the thread wishes and the thumbs up on the museum posters!

Feb 26, 2:06pm Top

Yesterday I met with the graphic artist and the other chairperson of our exhibit committee to come to some agreement on adapting the posters into a graphic novel. Before we left for the meeting the museum coordinator let us know that the poster verbiage is difficult for the kids that are coming in. So now it looks like we will be going for two versions of the novel, one of them kid friendly. It's the project that keeps on giving because you know who will be doing those words.

I had felt like I might have a chance to get ahead of things for a change. Looks like I will still be racing to catch up.

Feb 26, 2:46pm Top

Happy new thread!

Edited: Mar 30, 1:44pm Top

I actually finished getting all the books for my twelfth Thingaversary. The thirteen books are:

Girl Town by Carolyn Nowak
This Side of Murder by Anna Lee Huber
The Tenant by Katrine Engberg
Things in Jars by Jess Kidd
The Girls with No Names by Serena Burdick
That Churchill Woman by Stephanie Barron
Murder Once Removed by S.C. Perkins
A Dangerous Collaboration by Deanna Raybourn
Tudors: The History of England from Henry VIII to Elizabeth I by Peter Ackroyd
Vancouver Confidential by John BelshaW
The Hidden Lives of London Streets by James Morton
The Time Traveller's Guide to Restoration Britain 1660-1700 by Ian Mortimer
The Complete Jack the Ripper by Donald Rumbelow

Feb 26, 2:56pm Top

>29 drneutron: Thanks Jim!

Feb 26, 3:50pm Top

Happy new thread Meg my dear. I seem to be well behind on all the threads this year, the activity has really increased compared to last year.

Feb 26, 4:18pm Top

Happy new thread, Meg.

>30 Familyhistorian: Interesting list with the bias towards history!
I have only one of them on the stacks.

Feb 26, 4:29pm Top

>32 johnsimpson: You're not the only one whose behind, John. I haven't visited many of the threads in ages, including yours. Thanks for the thread wishes.

>33 PaulCranswick: Another Yorkshire boy! My lists tend to have a bias towards history, both fiction and nonfiction. Which one do you have in the stacks, Paul?

Feb 26, 4:43pm Top

>34 Familyhistorian: Not only two Yorkshire boys but from the same city. The city of Wakefield. The biggest city in England not to have a professional or semi-pro football (soccer) club. That's why most people from the area are devotees of the great Leeds United (Mr. John Simpson unfortunately not included).
Traditionally a coal mining and heavy engineering area, John was born and brought up in the same mining village as my father and shared interests apart from books includes a passion for cricket.

Feb 26, 6:05pm Top

Happy new thread, Meg!

>30 Familyhistorian: Nice haul, my 12th is coming soon.

Feb 26, 8:58pm Top

>30 Familyhistorian: Some great choices there. I hope you like the Perkins book better than I did. I still plan to give #2 a go later. I'm hoping she takes some of the reviews of the first to heart and doesn't make the same mistakes.

Feb 26, 9:28pm Top

Oh, a nice shiny new thread and an excellent book haul for your Thingaversary! Looks like February is ending with a bang, Meg. :)

Feb 27, 1:05am Top

>35 PaulCranswick: Did you and John know each other growing up, Paul? I know that football is taken very seriously and it was in my family as well. Apparently my grandmother's first husband was in on the organizing of West Ham FC, at least, they met in a room in his pub but family lore is that the kids didn't like him much so cheered for their mum's team the Hotspurs.

Feb 27, 1:05am Top

>30 Familyhistorian: Quite a haul, Meg! I've not read any of the books in your haul, but I've seen Vancouver Confidential around and I've heard that Anna Lee Huber is a good author. I feel quite spoiled myself. I daringly ordered The Foundling from the Book Depository in the UK and it actually arrived yesterday. You know how slow the mail can be. I think it only took around 3 weeks instead of the usual 2 -3 months. Maybe Canada Post has gotten their act together? I really enjoyed the first book by the author, The Familiars. I decided to take a chance and order from the Book Depository. I also have a copy of Bone China and several books out from the library. What to read first?

Feb 27, 1:06am Top

>36 FAMeulstee: Hi Anita, thanks for the thread wishes. It was hard to pick up the 13 for this year's Thingaversary. Have you started getting your haul yet?

Feb 27, 1:08am Top

>37 thornton37814: I was hoping for some good things from the Perkins book, Lori. I'll try to make some allowances for mistakes when I read that one.

Feb 27, 1:12am Top

>38 DeltaQueen50: Hi Judy, it took me almost 2 months to come up with my Thingaversary books. Very unusual for me. It seems that the unlimited holds at the Vancouver library are taking care of most of the new books so there are many books that I have already read on the shelves of the book stores. I never thought that would be a way to cut down on my book buying.

Feb 27, 1:24am Top

>40 vancouverdeb: It's just the required number for my 12th Thingaversary, Deborah. It took a while to gather them. I remember you writing about The Familiars on your thread but I was on my phone so dodged that bullet. You got me this time though. Does The Foundling continue with the same characters? It seems that the Book Depository mail is coming through faster now. My Santa Thing books came from Book Depository even though I requested that they come from Amazon. This time it only took them until mid January to come in rather than March like the time that I actually ordered them from Book Depository.

Feb 27, 2:23am Top

>39 Familyhistorian: That's a great story, Meg. Allegiances in football can be extremely firmly held in what sometimes resembles a tribal culture.

This will give some indication of the atmosphere inside the ground at a Leeds game although it has to be sampled in RL to really appreciate.

Feb 27, 9:31am Top

Happy new thread, Meg. You have started the year with some great reads. Great choices for your Thingaversary. I never remember mine -- not that I need an excuse to buy books!

Feb 27, 9:39am Top

Happy new thread, Meg!

Feb 27, 1:24pm Top

>30 Familyhistorian: Quality haul, Meg. Happy 12th.

Feb 27, 2:55pm Top

>45 PaulCranswick: Thanks for the Leeds clip, Paul. There is something special about being in a sports crowd cheering on your team. I can remember that feeling from being in the stadium in the days of the Expos when they first started in Montreal and we had such high hopes.

Feb 27, 2:58pm Top

>46 BLBera: The only way I remember my Thingaversary haul is by posting it on my thread, Beth. This year it took a long time and a concentrated effort to come up with those buys. Most of the great reads are courtesy of my library because we have unlimited holds so I became trigger happy with the hold button and that also means that they have to be quick reads because someone else will be waiting for them.

Feb 27, 3:00pm Top

>47 Crazymamie: Thanks Mamie!

>48 richardderus: Thanks Richard! How is your own haul coming along? Is it 14th anniversary so 15 books?

Feb 27, 3:14pm Top

38. Paper Girls by Brian K. Vaughan

Paper Girls has shown up on a few threads and I was intrigued. Graphic Novels with female leads are always a plus in my book. In this case the leads were four pre-teen girls who deliver early morning newspapers. They are gutsy and street wise because they have to be out there in the early morning hours.

The first volume in the series was a good one and a fast read. I can’t wait to get to the next.

Feb 27, 3:33pm Top

I am behind on reviews and attempting to catch up but it isn't slowing down my reading any. I can see that by the pile of finished books in front of me.

Yesterday I met a friend for dinner and a movie. She wanted to see The Call of the Wild having enjoyed the London book years ago. We were both disappointed as soon as we realized the dogs weren't real.

Feb 27, 3:47pm Top

39. Poppy Harmon Investigates by Lee Hollis

I’m a sucker for an interesting cover and the one for Poppy Harmon Investigates spoke to me because of the flattering picture of a woman investigating a retirement village. It was a different look for a woman over a certain age.

What I got when I opened the covers was a kind of mad cap scheme story for the start of a PI team. It reminded me of an ‘80s TV show with some of the over the top characters and fast action scenes. It all made sense when I read the author bio. He was a TV screenwriter. It was a readable story and the plot kept me intrigued but it was just not what I was expecting.

Feb 27, 4:18pm Top

>52 Familyhistorian: Glad that one was a hit with you, Meg. I've blitzed through the first five volumes and am eagerly awaiting my hold on the sixth. Although then, I will be all caught up and I'm already bummed at the thought of having to wait for more.

Feb 27, 4:37pm Top

>51 Familyhistorian: Yep, 14 so 15...I've got eight to go to get to the magic number. Paper Girls series is getting such luuuv that I'm tempted to...
...nope, too risky, it's a medium I really don't like very much and I've *just* started being treated with the slightest degree less frost by the comics crowd after I didn't like whatever it was, Watchmen maybe?

Feb 27, 5:07pm Top

Post #57 -- is it too late to say happy "new" thread? Wishing you a good one anyway.

Edited: Feb 28, 1:35am Top

>44 Familyhistorian: It's not too late to take a BB with The Familiars. It was a lot of fun, Meg. Note LOL fun, just a good page turner. The Foundling is a stand alone, as is The Familiars. I have several book tempting me at the moment and I'm having a hard time making a choice as to which book to read.

Feb 28, 12:12pm Top

>30 Familyhistorian: I like those Time-Travellers Guides books but I don’t think I’ve read that one.

Feb 28, 1:01pm Top

>30 Familyhistorian: Great book haul

>54 Familyhistorian: That's indeed an inviting cover. Sorry that the story wasn't so good.

Happy Friday, Meg.

Feb 28, 2:18pm Top

>55 MickyFine: Was it you who read the first Paper Girls and put the next ones available on hold right away, Micky? I remember that impressing me that I really had to read this one.

Feb 28, 2:22pm Top

>56 richardderus: Well the Paper Girls books have the added advantage of being slim if space is at a premium, Richard. It is also available at the library if you are tempted so maybe best to get something a bit more hard to get for the rest of your 8.

I can imagine they were a bit testy if you stepped on toes with your review as GN lovers tend to love the books.

Feb 28, 2:24pm Top

>57 RebaRelishesReading: Not too late for happy thread wishes, Reba, thanks!

Feb 28, 2:27pm Top

>58 vancouverdeb: Thanks for letting me know they are stand alones, Deborah. I thought they might be a series. In that case it doesn't matter what order I read them in. Good luck making your book choice. I don't have much trouble with that because I am usually juggling a bunch of reads at the same time.

Feb 28, 3:13pm Top

>59 SandDune: I have a couple of the other time traveller books on my shelves, Sandy. That is a new one, I believe. I haven't actually read any of them and I should but I haven't got to those times in my research yet. Another really good book about the reality of living in times past is Time Traveller's Handbook : a guide to the past which is great for figuring out how long it took to get somewhere by different means of travel and other things like that when you are writing about the past.

Feb 28, 3:14pm Top

>60 Ameise1: Hi Barbara, thanks re the book haul. Isn't that a fun cover, too bad the story didn't really live up to its promise. Have a great weekend!

Feb 28, 5:18pm Top

A busy day today, on top of a busy week. I have been working on my blog post for tomorrow. It will be published at 11:30 am PST. During that time I was fielding texts about tonight's snowshoeing. Sounds like it will be fun again but not the clear night I was hoping for if the forecasts are to be believed.

Feb 28, 5:24pm Top

>52 Familyhistorian: That one is already in the BlackHole and I hope to get to it soon.

>54 Familyhistorian: I will give that one a try. It sounds fun!

Feb 28, 6:18pm Top

>52 Familyhistorian: From the sounds of things, the first of Paper Girls is just the tip of the iceberg, Stasia, so be prepared. Poppy Harmon Investigates was a lighthearted cozy. I hope you enjoy it.

Feb 28, 6:33pm Top

40. Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson

There were many points of view in Red at the Bone because the story of two families who were brought together by the birth of a child to teenage parents was told by all of the characters involved. The voices came from different generations and their take on things was affected by their experiences and place on the continuum of life.

It was more a tale of a family than it was of one individual with the coming and going, the need to belong and escape part of the narrative. Although very effectively done, I didn’t feel close to any one person which, as a reader, is something I prefer.

Feb 28, 6:52pm Top

>70 Familyhistorian: That's an intriguing commentary for Red at the Bone.
I don't know if I've ever read a book with this particular pov, but maybe I wasn't paying attention to that type of dynamic. Very thoughtful awareness, Meg.
I'm liking the look of those Paper Girls GNs, too.

Feb 28, 7:18pm Top

>71 SandyAMcPherson: I didn't realize that I was thinking that until I sat down and tried to sum up what I thought of the book, Sandy. The Paper Girls GNs look like a fun bunch of reads if the series continues on like the first one.

Feb 28, 8:48pm Top

>70 Familyhistorian: interesting Meg. Red at the Bone is my next book after finishing my current book. I'll come back and review your comments after I finish it. I've waited a while for it from the library!

Feb 29, 2:39am Top

>73 mdoris: It is a popular book at the moment, Mary. I had to wait for a while to get it from my library. I hope you enjoy Red at the Bone.

Edited: Mar 10, 1:28am Top

41. Absolution by Murder by Peter Tremayne

One of my favourite genres is mystery and historic mysteries are a cut above the rest in my eyes. So, when I found out about the Sister Fidelma mystery series I was intrigued. It would be a chance to learn about a part of history that I knew little about because Absolution by Murder was set in 664 and Sister Fidelma was a woman from Ireland when Irish women had standing in their community. The murder took place as a synod in Northumbria was held to decide if the church would follow the rules of worship laid down by the Celtic Church or the Roman Church.

The mystery was good in itself and learning about this time in history; how the different churches operated and the various beliefs that abounded, was even better. I’m sure that I will learn more about this time period as I continue on with the series.

Feb 29, 3:47am Top

>75 Familyhistorian: BB which goes to my wishlist because my library has got only parts of this series.

Happy Saturday, Meg.

Feb 29, 2:20pm Top

>75 Familyhistorian: I found that Tremayne a bit over rhapsodic about the glories of early Christian Ireland and for some reason the frequent appearance of the adjective autumnal drove me batty. On the other hand, The Book of Kells is a favorite.

Feb 29, 2:32pm Top

>75 Familyhistorian: I hope that your library gets more of the series, Barbara. Have a great Saturday.

Feb 29, 2:37pm Top

>77 quondame: I was not familiar with the Celtic Church so found the information very welcome and didn't notice that accounts of the Irish church were overly glowing, more a case of what might have been. I have never heard The Book of Kells by MacAvoy. I will have to check it out. Thanks for putting it on my radar, Susan.

Feb 29, 2:40pm Top

42. They Called Us Enemy by George Takei

George Takei was a young boy when his family was uprooted from their home in Los Angeles to be interred as enemies of the US; the only reason for this was that their family was of Japanese origin. As children George and his brother didn’t understand what was happening. The boys grew up in the camps and came to think of their lives behind barred wire as being normal.

This graphic memoir was an even-handed account how life was for the interned citizens, deprived of rights, trying to figure out the best ways for their families to respond to rumours and heavy-handed questions from the government. All they wanted was a way to re-establish themselves once their families’ incarcerations were over but what they got was government policy based on lies about their “race”.

They Called Us Enemy was a powerful account of a disgraceful time given by a well known and beloved actor and activist.

Edited: Mar 10, 1:29am Top

43. The Axeman's Jazz by Ray Celestin

It seemed like a book that I would race through even though it was on the heavy side at 426 pages. But I love history and The Axeman’s Jazz was a mystery written about an historical time in New Orleans, a time closer to the birth of jazz. The historical detail was fascinating and the characters even included a young Louis Armstrong.

The characters, while interesting seemed to be a problem for me. There were just so many to keep track of and it seemed to slow the story down. I made it through to the end and found myself wondering about the series going forward with the teaser at the end when two of the characters end up in Chicago as investigators. Maybe that came from the mention of Alphonse Capone.

Feb 29, 10:56pm Top

It was a sunny day today, nice after being in the snow yesterday evening but we had a great time snowshoeing. Well, except that we lost two of our group and our guide had to go look for them. We were in the slow group but they were slower than we were. We all made it to the lodge in time for chocolate fondue though.

I went to the library in Vancouver today to do my usual pick up of holds. The same hold book that was missing last Sunday was missing again today. So the librarian cancelled my hold and put it on again. Hopefully this time it will show up.

Mar 1, 12:11am Top

44. The Tartan Pimpernel by Donald Caskie

The Reverend Donald Caskie had been posted a long way from home on many occasions but 1940 saw him posted as the minister to the Scots Kirk in Paris. Not an auspicious time to be in that city. When the Germans invaded, he had to flee along with many of the citizens of Paris. He went south and ended up founding a mission in Marseilles, a clearing house for escaping allied personnel.

As his memoir, The Tartan Pimpernel relates, that was not the only heroic thing he did while in France for the rest of the war. He came under suspicion many times and, in the end, he was arrested, moved from prison to prison and was sentenced to death. But his faith got him through.

Mar 1, 4:07pm Top

Hi Meg - I also loved They Called Us Enemy.

>83 Familyhistorian: This sounds very good as well.

Mar 2, 1:01am Top

>84 BLBera: Hi Beth, They Called Us Enemy filled in some blanks that I had about that experience as did The Tartan Pimpernel. They were both memoirs although in dramatically different forms.

Mar 2, 11:02am Top

Hiya, Meg.

I'm catching up - as you knew I would, I like those graphic novel-type posters in the museum. Great idea.

Your reading is crossing over with mine a lot right now. I'm another fan of They Called Us Enemy. You said something in your Night Boat to Tangier review on your last thread that struck me: It captured the reality of such lives well but they were not lives that I was unacquainted with or wished particularly to visit. I think you put your finger on why it disappointed me a bit. It was well-written, and the exchanges between the two main characters were a hoot - Like loquacious Samuel Beckett characters, which is not something I would've thought possible. But in the end they were not lives that I was unacquainted with or particularly wished to visit, as you said.

That's a fair review of Red at the Bone, too, although it sounds like I liked it a bit more than you. Even a slightly lesser Jacqueline Woodson book is pretty darn good.

I'm glad to see you started Paper Girls and you're enjoying it! That's a fun series.

Mar 2, 11:54am Top

>86 jnwelch: Hi Joe, good to see that you are up to visiting threads. I hope that means that you and Debbi are on the mend!

Thanks re the review of Night Boat to Tangier. I find that, the more I write about the books that I read, the more I can put my finger on why they do or don't work for me; even why they are good but I have reservations, like with Red at the Bone.

I thought you would like the GN style exhibit posters. People who see the exhibit are spending a lot more time reading than they did with other displays. Now we are working to adapt the posters into a graphic novel. We'll see how that goes.

Mar 2, 12:01pm Top

One of the books that I am currently reading is the next for me in the Alan Banks series, The Hanging Valley. As part of the investigation, Banks goes to Toronto. Of course, he flies. They have just turned off the no smoking sign so he lights up and the stewardess comes around and hands out headphones. No asking for money and smoking on an airplane - I vaguely remember those days.

I'm off to the dealership to have them to a bi-annual car checkup in a few. I usually go for a walk while I wait but it is a rainy day out there once again.

Mar 2, 4:33pm Top

>62 Familyhistorian: I learned LONG ago not to review comic books unless I like them. I got very very tired of being abused for ignorance/insensitivity/having the awful taste not to like the comics that twidgee liked. I was given them and just never said a word. What was I supposed to do? Lie? Nope.

Never heard from that "friend" again.

>80 Familyhistorian: There's a comic book I liked!

Mar 2, 6:53pm Top

I've had my eye on the Sister Fidelma series for awhile. Hopefully I'll get to one soon.

I tried to find the next Inspector Banks for the trip, but it was checked out at the time. I will probably need to download one more audio book for the trip home. I'll see what's available.

Edited: Mar 2, 10:11pm Top

Ah, my car is at Craftsman Collision . Someone scraped the passenger side a while back. Not to much damage and I took it into Craftsman Collision and they did they did the repairs over two days. Unfortunately they washed the car too soon after painting it and left a bunch of bubbles in the paint. My car is a 2018 Corolla, so back I went to have them buff out the bubbles in the paint. It should be ready at 5 pm today. And yes, it is cold and rainy day today. Ugh! Fortunately Dave is home today to help ferry me back and forth to the repair place.

Mar 2, 7:48pm Top

>83 Familyhistorian: I added The Tartan Pimpernel to the BlackHole based on your comments on the nonfiction challenge page. Thanks for that recommendation, Meg.

Count me in as another fan of They Called Us Enemy. I thought it was terrific.

Mar 2, 10:29pm Top

Hi, Meg. You have been reading some good books. Glad you enjoyed They Called Us Enemy. It is a terrific GN. I also liked Red to the Bone, a bit more than you. And hooray for Paper Girls!

Mar 3, 12:29pm Top

>61 Familyhistorian: It sure was. :)

Mar 3, 1:53pm Top

>89 richardderus: Like many proponents of particular niche culture, comic book aficionados are not known for their ability to see their genre with a critical eye nor, from your experience, does it appear that they welcome others who do so. But, like all genres, there are good and bad examples of the art. The Called Us Enemy is a really good example of that art.

Mar 3, 8:04pm Top

>90 thornton37814: I enjoyed the first of the Sister Fidelma series, Lori. I think you would like it. Hope you found a suitable audio for your trip home.

Edited: Mar 3, 8:07pm Top

>91 vancouverdeb: Did the buffing fix the bubbles, Deborah? Having someone to ferry you back and forth is handy. There seemed to be a few breaks in the steady rain today and I was able to walk without my umbrella for a while but it didn't last long. They said that tomorrow is supposed to be sunny. Well, at least that is the forecast they gave yesterday. It might have changed by now.

Mar 3, 8:10pm Top

>92 alcottacre: I hit a few people with a BB for The Tartan Pimpernel, Stasia. It has been sitting patiently waiting for me to read it for probably over a decade. I wonder what other treasures there might be hidden among my own books? Wasn't They Called Us Enemy good?

Mar 3, 8:11pm Top

>94 MickyFine: So have you read them all now?

Edited: Mar 4, 2:39am Top

>97 Familyhistorian: Thanks, yes, Meg, the buffing took all of the bubbles out of the paint. I probably would not have noticed them on my own, but my husband is quite a perfectionist. I think it goes along with his job as an aircraft maintenance engineer for Air Canada. He notices every detail. I suppose it is a good thing. He is very handy, and has replaced a roof for us , - well - if breaks, he can probably fix it. Washing machines, dryers, dishwashers etc etc. ICBC is very good with the " shop valet " program. It made it that much easier. I do draw the line with my husband as far as trying to fix anything gas related and he does know his limits. I actually stopped and purchased an umbrella on my way home from the collision place. Usually I am walking the dog and have a leash in one hand and water in the other, so I just put up my gortex hood. But yesterday I decided maybe, just maybe, an umbrella might come in handy :-) We do have a couple of big golf sized umbrellas, but those are a bit of a bother to tote around.

Yesterday at Craftsman Collision he pulled out his flashlight to inspect the paint job and then shook the fellow's hand. I was slightly embarrassed and just stood to one side. But that is Dave. :-)

Mar 4, 12:06pm Top

>100 vancouverdeb: Good that the paint job has Dave's seal of approval, Deborah. You do develop an eye after spending years looking at things closely. I guess we have your umbrella buying to thank for the sunshine today. I hope you have plenty of time to get out and enjoy it, maybe when it warms up a bit, though.

Mar 4, 6:47pm Top

A recent Vancouver street shot

Mar 4, 7:13pm Top

>98 Familyhistorian: Yeah, I need to start digging for buried treasure on my shelves too. Mainly I troll the library's shelves!

Mar 4, 7:48pm Top

>103 alcottacre: I have that library habit too, Stasia. Maybe if I could just select one of my book and send someone off to retrieve it, like a library hold, I would read more of my own tomes.

Mar 4, 8:47pm Top

>102 Familyhistorian: - Toronto would kill for such wide and protected bike lanes. I don't ride a bike in this city (I don't have a death wish) but for those who do, even the bike lanes we have, are not nearly as protected or as wide and certainly not enough of them. This city is becoming more dangerous for cyclists and pedestrians as the years go by. And distracted (car) drivers and pedestrians don't help. The roads themselves would probably not feel so narrow if cars were smaller. But that's a whole other story.....

Mar 4, 9:04pm Top

>105 jessibud2: There is a lot of controversy over Vancouver's bike lanes, Shelley, and the more protected ones are downtown like in the photo I posted which is a Robson and Hornby right outside the art gallery. Business don't like those protected bike lanes because it cuts down on street parking and, as a pedestrian, I don't think much of them either because they give bike riders a sense of entitlement. I've been flatten by a bike before and don't want to repeat the experience.

Mar 4, 9:09pm Top

I love the idea of the cycle lanes. As someone who cycled to a fairly high standard it grieves me that it is simply unsafe to be on the roads here in Malaysia.

Mar 5, 10:05am Top

Morning, Meg!

>81 Familyhistorian: Adding this one to The List - is it also titled The Axeman? Amazon has the book with both titles, and they look to be the same book - confusing.

>102 Familyhistorian: I was wondering about the markings on the street, and then the mystery was solved as I read the following posts - bike lanes!

Mar 5, 12:20pm Top

>99 Familyhistorian: Just waiting for my hold on Volume 6 and then I'll be caught up.

Love that sunny shot of Vancouver. Not always a common sight. :)

Edited: Mar 5, 1:19pm Top

>107 PaulCranswick: From the few glimpses I have seen, Asian countries seem to have a very different concept of traffic, Paul. Are there bike lanes in England? I don't remember noticing any when I was there.

Mar 5, 1:34pm Top

>108 Crazymamie: I had to google it and the description for The Axeman is the same as The Axeman's Jazz. Not sure why they did that. Probably some kind of marketing ploy.

Sorry the photo was confusing, Mamie. I made it harder by cutting off some of the bike signs on the pavement but there is a person with a bike so I thought it was self evident if I thought about that part of the photo at all. I was trying to get a photo of the daffodils.

Mar 5, 1:45pm Top

>109 MickyFine: Is number 6 the last of Paper Girls currently out or the latest that your library has, Micky?

Sunshine in Vancouver is rare especially at this time of year. Where I live is even rainier because I am at the bottom of mountains. Although there is no actual rain at the moment just an odd looking sky.

Mar 5, 1:50pm Top

One of my current reads is Quiet Girl in a Noisy World. I can relate. Especially right now when my battery is beginning to feel run down. I have been on the go since Monday when I had to take my car in for its bi-annual check up, Tuesday was dentist, yesterday I had a meeting about turning our posters into a GN and in the evening attended a meeting of my women's group. There is more today as well as I have to leave in a while to chair a meeting of PoCo Heritage's Exhibit Committee. It was ok when I could just be part of the group now I have to speak and hustle the meeting along.

Mar 5, 5:05pm Top

>112 Familyhistorian: It's the last of the series that's currently available in trade paperback. :)

Mar 5, 10:32pm Top

>114 MickyFine: Oh, I see it came out as a comic, trade paperback and then deluxe hard covers. Very popular but it looks like trade paperback 6 includes comic 30 which is the end of the series.

Mar 6, 9:27am Top

Hi Meg! A belated happy new thread to you.

>3 Familyhistorian: Fascinating blog entry about naming conventions and using them to figure out ancestors. As always, thanks for sharing.

Mar 7, 1:37pm Top

>116 karenmarie: Hi Karen, I'm glad you liked the blog entry. A new blog post is due out today in about an hour. Thanks for the new thread wishes.

Mar 7, 1:39pm Top

45. The Hanging Valley by Peter Robinson

I finished the third book in the Alan Banks series The Hanging Valley. It was published in 1989 so there a few things that were a bit dated, like the fact that Banks was still struggling with smoking. At one point in the story his investigation took him to Toronto. The description of the flight was so much different than the present state of air travel. I can just barely remember when there was smoking allowed and where they didn’t try to nickel and dime you to death after you got on board.

The murder this time was just outside a small village, a murder victim was discovered in a nearby valley. He had been dead for a while, a native son who was back for a visit as he had to move to Canada to find employment. Suspicions centred around a group of men who were the movers and shakers in village life and the investigation uncovered the true state of affairs and led to a few more deaths.

Mar 8, 1:11am Top

Interesting information about Scottish naming patterns. I know my dad was named after his dad , first name , and then had two more names, one from his paternal grandfather and maternal grandfather. When I was born, the eldest in my family, my dad thought I ought to be named after my paternal and maternal grandmothers, in which case I would be either Helga Hazel, or Hazel Helga. I'm glad my mom prevailed and I got Deborah Anne. :-)

Mar 8, 1:44am Top

>119 vancouverdeb: The naming pattern used to be quite strictly followed in some families, Deborah. Much of that has changed these days. I'm sure that you were just as glad not to be called Helga or Hazel!

Mar 8, 1:47am Top

46. Fighting Churchill, Appeasing Hitler: Neville Chamberlain, Sir Horace Wilson & Britain's Plight of Appeasement: 1937-1939 by Adrian Phillips

Neville Chamberlain was remembered as the British Prime Minister who tried to appease Hitler. He thought he had brought “peace in our time” but didn’t have a good grasp of who he was dealing with. Fighting Churchill, Appeasing Hitler gives an account of the government between the years of 1937 to 1939.

It was a time when Churchill was a pariah and Chamberlain depended on the support of Sir Horace Wilson, the head of the Civil Service – not an elected official or someone who was supposed to be involved in the political end of things. Between them, Chamberlain and Wilson, went behind the Foreign Office with their own mission to bring peace to Europe, a noble but blundering continuous campaign. I had heard something of their campaign but as they say, the devil is in the details.

Mar 8, 3:00am Top

47. Olive, Again by Elizabeth Strout

With Olive, Again Strout brings back Olive Kitteridge but this time she explores a later period in Olive’s life. As in the first book, there are guest turns by other town characters but the action usually comes back to Olive, her awkwardness and her difficulties relating to people.

I found the tone to be a bit sadder as Olive was coming to the end of her life. That made her reflect on her past and her actions but it also dealt with the indignity of become old.

Mar 8, 10:46am Top

Morning, Meg! I have not read any of those Alan Banks books, so maybe I should give the first one a try. I'm also adding >121 Familyhistorian: to The List - nice review!

So, um...about Sean Duffy...

Mar 8, 10:57am Top

Happy Sunday, Meg. I hope you are having a good weekend. I am a fan of Quiet Girl in a Noisy World. I hope you will be too. And hooray for Olive, Again. I am so glad Strout returned to this crusty, but beloved character.

Mar 8, 4:08pm Top

>123 Crazymamie: The first Alan Banks books are good but dated. But sometimes that really makes them, kind of like reminding the reader of how things were back in the '80s. I started reading them after seeing Peter Robinson at the Vancouver Writer's Conference. I hope you enjoy the appeasement book. It was so interesting all the back channel stuff that was going on.

Yeah, I know, Sean Duffy. I have it out of the library but I also have a bunch of other books out and other readers have holds on those so they tend to make it to the top of the pile sooner.

Mar 8, 4:13pm Top

>124 msf59: Have a great Sunday, Mark, and the rest of your days off too! I am behind on my reviews so have finished Quiet Girl in a Noisy World but haven't written about it yet. I put a hold on Olive, Again because my RL book club was reading Olive Kitteridge for their January book. The second Olive book hold came to me in February though but I didn't go to the January book club meeting anyway. Olive tends to make me sad so I was debating whether to actually read it but I did and it was good, still sad though.

Mar 8, 4:17pm Top

48. The Long Call by Ann Cleeves

I have read a few of books in both the Shetland and Vera series by Ann Cleeves but haven’t been compelled to read all of the books for both of the series. After reading The Long Call, I have a feeling it might be different this time.

Matthew Venn was the lead Detective in a small police force in North Devon, a place where his story began. His family were members of a small religious cult and Matthew was a member before he went to university. Now they want nothing to do with him although he has come back to live near where he grew up. The murder mystery comes close to Matthew’s personal life, involving members of the religious cult. There was also a connection to the Woodyard, an inclusive centre where art, education and “special needs” people come together. That brought the murder even closer to home because the Woodyard was the brain child of Matthew’s husband, Jonathan.

The characters, the conflict and the mystery were compelling. I can’t wait to see where Cleeves takes this series next.

Mar 8, 4:31pm Top

>128 vancouverdeb: I feel similar to you. I enjoyed quite a few of the Shetland series and Vera Stanhope series, but I thought that this new series , starting with The Long Call will be a series I will likely want to read each book. I'm eager for the next in the series.

Mar 8, 4:33pm Top

>127 Familyhistorian: I've quite liked all the Cleeves books I've read, so I need to go get this one. I think I'll borrow it from the library, though, so I won't be tempted to clutter the place up with more books.

Mar 8, 10:01pm Top

>128 vancouverdeb: I am not sure if it is the protagonist or the fact of getting in at the beginning of the series but this one really grabbed me, Deborah. From what you said it seems to have been the same for you. I hope it isn't long until the next in the series comes out.

Mar 8, 10:02pm Top

>129 richardderus: I got mine from the library, Richard. It is still in hard cover and very popular so I had to wait for a hold to come in. This entry grabbed my interest more than her other series.

Mar 9, 9:09am Top

Hi Meg!

>75 Familyhistorian: I am not familiar with Peter Tremayne and that series sounds enjoyable. Adding it to the wish list. (sigh)

>127 Familyhistorian: Oh, a third series by Cleeves? Uh oh. I'm still working on the Vera and Shetland series, but I'll have this one to look forward to.

I hope you are doing well!

Mar 9, 1:02pm Top

>132 EBT1002: Hi Ellen, sorry to add to your need-to-read series but those two are good. Life is very busy at the moment. I'm sure you know what that feels like!

Mar 9, 1:51pm Top

OK you guys! I'm in. Between Deb, Susan and Meg, I've added The Long Call to my series WL.

I wasn't exactly hooked by the Vera Stanhope series although well-plotted. I read only a few (and watched one on Masterpiece theatre as well, The Crow Trap). Well-written but with a creepy-unsettled vibe going for me. But I do like Cleeves' style so leaping in at the start of a new series. I think I read some of the Shetland series books but cruising the titles, only Dead Water popped out as familiar.

Mar 9, 2:09pm Top

>134 SandyAMcPherson: Glad to have you along, Sandy. Your experience of the Cleeve's books sounds similar to mine. I hope that The Long Call draws you into the new series like it did me.

Mar 10, 9:02pm Top

>127 Familyhistorian: I'm looking forward to reading that one soon.

Mar 10, 9:14pm Top

All my old series books are calling to me at the moment, Meg. I may change my reading style back to what it was in 2011 & 2012. I think I am reading more and finishing less. I love plot driven storytelling and sometimes with the modern novel you just don't get that.

Mar 10, 9:24pm Top

>136 thornton37814: I really liked that one, Lori. I hope you can get your hands on it soon.

Mar 10, 9:27pm Top

>137 PaulCranswick: It feels so much easier to read those series books, Paul. Some of the other books seem to read so much slower and then I pick up a series book and they are such page turners that I don't look to see how much I have to read, I just don't want it to end.

Mar 10, 9:31pm Top

>139 Familyhistorian: I am presently going back over my reading since I joined LT and I will square exactly where I am in all my series and take it from there. I don't think it will radically change my habits but it will tweak it a bit, I guess.

Mar 10, 11:47pm Top

49. Quiet Girl in a Noisy World: An Introvert's Story by Debbie Tung

I finally read Quiet Girl in a Noisy World. Debbie Tung really tells the introvert’s story well and the images added another dimension to the tale. I was charmed and, happily, I have another unread GN by her on my shelves.

Mar 10, 11:50pm Top

>140 PaulCranswick: You are a lot more organized than I am, Paul. I guess you have to be to do the stats. I have no idea all the series I am following and where I am in them. I'm sure that I have forgotten about some of them along the way.

Mar 10, 11:58pm Top

>142 Familyhistorian: There used to be a great site called fict-fact.com but it is now defunct. That was great for tracking series.

Mar 11, 1:26am Top

>143 PaulCranswick: I read about the demise of Fict-fact on LT, Paul. It sounded like it was a good site but I never used it, probably a good thing that I didn't come to depend on it, I suppose.

Mar 11, 10:53am Top

>141 Familyhistorian: This is a book that's been on my "Must request" list at the PL for many months. I'm inspired to rearrange the WL, but for the next few weeks I am *resolved* to quit submitting holds until I finish the pile I've borrowed.

Mar 11, 2:30pm Top

>145 SandyAMcPherson: It is a very quick read, Sandy, so won't take long when you get to it. I haven't got the knack of finish the pile I have borrowed before hitting the hold button. I think part of that is the long, long time it takes to get to the top of some hold lists.

Mar 11, 3:05pm Top

Yesterday I met a friend for coffee. It had been a while, since July in fact, since we had coffee together even though three of us used to meet regularly. She said that she has had so much happening lately that time gets away from her. Lately I have felt the same way. With so many things on the go I feel that I am moving sideways instead of forward.

Mar 11, 3:09pm Top

Last Friday I joined a tour of the South Side of Port Coquitlam, looking at the historic houses. There were a lot of them including this one which will be pulled down to make way for a new development. The rep for the development told us that the house was offered to the city but they said they didn't have anywhere to put it.

Mar 11, 8:21pm Top

>148 Familyhistorian: It's sad to lose such chunks of history.

Mar 11, 9:38pm Top

>136 thornton37814: We have it at our academic library on the lease book program, and it will not go back until the person who manages that collection (me) has read it!

Edited: Mar 11, 9:50pm Top

Nice sunny day here, Meg and your picture reflects that , though I think you took that some days ago. Windy here though, and I imagine in Coquitlam too.

I'm not sure what I liked better about this new Anne Cleeves series. Perhaps the protagonist? It seemed to move a bit faster than the Shetland Series, but it's been a while since I read any of the Shetland series.

Mar 11, 9:47pm Top

>148 Familyhistorian: Years ago, I moved back to Austin after 12 Manhattan years, or 30 American lifetimes. A neighborhood where I went in the 1970s to buy, errmm, supplies not commonly available in my posh neighborhood was slated to be knocked down and paved over for the new Convention Center where they hold SXSW. People had conniptions..."part of our history destroyed for developers to make a profit!"...and now the self-same souls are whinging a mile a minute because COVID-19 shuttered the festival and crashed the city's $500MM payday.

Time heals all wounds.

Mar 11, 10:53pm Top

Hi Meg, I am knee deep in various series but I can't seem to help myself from adding more to the list! I love the Shetland series by Anne Cleeves but it's been awhile since I've read one - need to fix that!

Mar 12, 2:06pm Top

>149 quondame: It is, isn't it, Susan? I love old houses and am sad to see them disappear but it takes a lot of money and effort to keep them going.

>150 thornton37814: Nice to have such power, Lori!

>151 vancouverdeb: I was walking around Burnaby yesterday, Deborah. The wind was surprisingly strong and cool. I'm hoping it isn't as windy out there today. I think that the protagonist in Cleeves' new series is more relatable, at least for us introverted types.

Mar 12, 2:13pm Top

>152 richardderus: The irony of progress there, Richard. I did have to look up SXSW as that event was not on my radar. Not sure that no refunds to ticket buyers is a great PR stance though.

>153 DeltaQueen50: There is always room for more series, Judy. At least that's what I tell myself every time I add one. I read but have yet to write up another first in a genealogical mystery series that I just read. You should check out the new Cleeves series.

Mar 12, 2:18pm Top

Last night I attended the AGM for the BC Genealogical Society. Attendance was down. Not sure if that was because of the current health scare or the nature of the meeting. This evening we had a board meeting for PoCo Heritage Scheduled but that has been cancelled. Our president is sick (regular sickness she got from her granddaughter) and someone else wasn't coming so she cancelled it. Just as well really, the Legacy 24 Hour Webinar states this afternoon. Now I won't have to leave part way through.

Mar 12, 2:47pm Top

>141 Familyhistorian: Oh good. I continue to be in love with Quiet Girl in a Noisy World. The other one of hers you probably have is Book Love, and, as you can tell from the title, you'll enjoy that one, too.

Mar 12, 10:56pm Top

>157 jnwelch: Quiet Girl in a Noisy World hit quite a few chords, Joe. I look forward to reading Book Love which is the other one on my shelves.

Mar 13, 3:49pm Top

50. Late Breaking by K.D. Miller

The latest pick for my RL book club was Late Breaking, a collection of short stories. There were recurring characters and, using the short story format, the author was able to tell the story of particular incidents from different points of view and also to show the characters at different stages in their lives. It was a good example of a short story collection but it was a short story collection and I don’t do well with them. It was still difficult to pick up to plow through a story.

Mar 14, 10:49am Top

I love historic houses, Meg. That sounds like fun. Nice photo.

The Long Call sounds good. I have enjoyed the Shetland ones I've read, but then I started to watch the series and stopped reading the books!

I'm still waiting for Olive Again. Can't wait.

Have a nice weekend.

Mar 15, 12:16am Top

51. Muddy: The Story of Blues Legend Muddy Waters by Michael Mahin and Evan Turk

The sound of Muddy Water’s music brings back my early days in Vancouver so I had to read Muddy: The Story of Blues Legend Muddy Waters. It may have been written for a younger audience but it told the basics of his story and the illustrations were wonderful and fit the story well.

Edited: Mar 15, 12:47am Top

>160 BLBera: Hi Beth, it was a good historic house tour. Very casual and I knew the tour guide so very relaxed. I think that The Long Call is the start of Cleeves' best series so far and there are no plans to film it yet so maybe you should give it a read.

Have a great rest of the weekend.

Mar 15, 1:55am Top

52. Commute: An Illustrated Memoir of Female Shame by Erin Williams

Told in the space of a day, Commute was a memoir that filled in much of the author’s life through flash backs detailing her experiences. Things that happen in the day triggered the memories so that they flowed naturally. The illustrations added another dimension to the story.

As the title suggested, the book was about female shame, the specific shame of the woman telling the story which shaped her life. It was also about the shame that was given to her by others in her story, both those with whom she had a relationship and those who were merely in the same space, a reality for women for much of their lives.

Edited: Mar 15, 1:57am Top

I agree, The Long Call is one of Ann Cleeves best, Meg. Nice sunny days we've had , but sure is a nasty wind out there. I enjoyed my walk with the dog, but it was quite cold heading east. Why do I bother styling my hair? Always a question I have on days like today. And with curly hair, I use the term " styling " very loosely.

Mar 15, 2:03am Top

On Friday night we decided to hold our regular book club. Many of the women are teachers and the virus has changed many March break plans. One was looking forward to a conference close to Milan, well, we know that wasn't going to happen. Another's family had set up a surprise birthday event for her mum that involved far flung kids and mother getting together in Vegas. So there was lots of talk about the virus and even a bit more than usual about the book which was Late Breaking. The general consensus was that K.D. Miller was a very good story teller with a devious mind. The pie went over well too.

I had to make two because I didn't know how many would show up and there are 15 of us.

Mar 15, 2:07am Top

>164 vancouverdeb: Curly hair or straight, the wind didn't help it at all, Deborah. I was in Surrey and went for a couple of walks between genealogy meetings. I had to make sure to take a comb to it after I got back into our library so that I would look respectable. It was hard to cross the Port Mann Bridge with the gusts too, well, at least in my car. The Long Call is a good one!

Mar 15, 6:10am Top

>161 Familyhistorian: - That's the one I read not long ago, right? I also loved the illustrations.

>166 Familyhistorian: - What kind of pie?

>164 vancouverdeb:,>166 Familyhistorian: - Crazy windy here, too, on Friday. I think today ought to be better. At least today, we can expect sun, unlike yesterday.

Mar 15, 8:25am Top

Happy Sunday, Meg. Both Muddy & Commute sound like solid reads. The pies look good too. What kind are they?

Edited: Mar 19, 1:55am Top

>162 Familyhistorian: Ah, I read that TV has already bought the rights to Cleeves' new crime series. It makes sense: the south west is gorgeous for filming, beautiful coastal scenery. Who knows how long until they make it though.

I'll have a look for Commute. And the pies look lovely.

Mar 15, 3:24pm Top

>167 jessibud2: Yes, the Muddy Waters book is the same one that you read, Shelley. That's where I found out about the book. The pie is apple, one of my favourites and homemade is the best. We have another sunny day here today and it looks like the wind of the last two days has died down, a good sign because that's what was making it so cold.

Mar 15, 3:27pm Top

>168 msf59: I do love a good illustrated book, Mark, and they are both good ones and very different from each other. The pie is homemade apple my favourite. I like homemade because I don't make a gooey filling just apples and cinnamon. This time I added some sugar because the Granny Smiths were very tart and I was feeding it to others. If it was just for me, I would have stayed with just the cinnamon.

Mar 15, 3:31pm Top

>169 charl08: That was quick work if they already have the TV rights sewed up. I just hope they get the characters right. Jonathan would be a tricky one to portray, I think, because so much goes on in his head.

I think that you would like Commute, Charlotte. I got to bring the better part of the second pie home so I am set sweet wise for a while.

Mar 15, 3:34pm Top

53. She Said: Breaking the Sexual Harassment Story That Helped Ignite a Movement Jodi Kantor & Megan Twohey

I read She Said during the time that the Weinstein trial was in the public mind and the verdict was about to come down. The book caught the urgency of the story and the caution of the women coming forward. They had buried what had happened to them for so long and many of them had been paid to keep quiet. That was a significant barrier to the investigation behind the story.

It was not a surprise to see that Ashley Judd was open to speaking about her experiences. I read a memoir/autobiography by her that showed that her philosophy was not mainstream, she thought things through for herself. The tale of the intrepid reporters who broke the story in such a way that it inspired others to come forward was a fascinating one.

Mar 15, 3:58pm Top

Yesterday I attended an all day meeting at the BCGS library. Attendance was down a bit but we still enjoyed getting together to talk about genealogy and DNA. Looks like the meetings might be put on hold for a while.

Strange things are happening. I'm going to make my way to the library as usual today but all of my book due dates have been changed to April 25 and there will be no charge for not picking up hold books on time. Looks like they are encouraging people to self isolate. I take transit to the library so it will be interesting to see if ridership is affected.

Edited: Mar 31, 2:11am Top

54. Disasterama: Adventures in the Queer Underground 1977-1997 by Alvin Orloff

A memoir shaped by a particular time in history, Disasterama was the story of a young man coming of age in San Francisco with a foray into New York. He was finding his way in the gay world when it was blossoming and madcap, drug and alcohol fueled antics were the norm. He found a friend to help him through and they had many adventures together. But this was also the time when AIDS was first whispered about then became larger choking off many in their prime.

It was a story told from a distance, looking back but it captured the verve and some of the self-destructiveness of that time.

Mar 15, 4:05pm Top

>174 Familyhistorian: - Our libraries are closed and the announcement also said no late fees will be incurred. I have a book and a dvd at home, both due later this week. No problem finishing them but they said even their drop-off windows won't be open so to just hold onto them. I guess if no staff is there, the drop off bucket under that window could fill up. Anyhow, no worries. Transit here is also still working. Hot Docs sent out an email yesterday saying they are going to limit seating to only 250 people per showing of films (30%, they say, of capacity) in order to allow for lots of spreading out, but today, another announcement tells us it's closed altogether until April 10 (so far).

I am not in any way in a panic mode. I have started a new jigsaw puzzle and am surrounded by books. Who me, worry?

Edited: Mar 15, 11:01pm Top

>176 jessibud2: Some libraries have closed but the Vancouver Public Libraries are open. It looks like there are more cases in Ontario than BC, maybe that has something to do with it? I don't know but I did want to go and collect my library holds before there were more of them. Somehow there were 7 to pick up this week and I have 6 weeks to read them, but then there are also the ones I already have at home and the new ones that might show up.

It great that you got into jigsaws before this isolation protocol came in, Shelley. This could be an excuse to read more of your own tomes.

Mar 15, 11:11pm Top

So I went downtown to the library this afternoon. There were fewer people on the Skytrain than usual going there and way less people on the way home. The city streets were emptier than usual as well.

There were 7 holds waiting for me at the library and extra weeks to read them, which is probably a good thing. The books are:

The Hunting Accident
Paper Girls Vol 2
Me: Elton John Official Autobiography
Targeted: The Cambridge Analytica Whistleblower's Inside Story of How Big Data, Trump and Facebook Broke Democracy and How it Can Happen Again
Curious Toys
The Yellow House
A Purely Private Matter

Mar 16, 1:06am Top

>178 Familyhistorian: Meg it looks like you're all set!

Mar 16, 1:12am Top

Nice looking pies, Meg. I sure hope that the libraries do not close down. So far, no word of that from my Richmond library. It was still very windy here today. Poppy and I nearly got blown away . At least it sunny. I look forward to warmer temps and less wind. I took skytrain into Broadway and Granville on Thursday and it seemed business as usual, but things have changed in a matter of days.

Mar 16, 1:21am Top

>179 mdoris: Those should keep me going for a while, Mary, not to mention all the other books that have more permanent residency here. Not having to read them all in 3 weeks is a plus too.

Mar 16, 1:25am Top

>180 vancouverdeb: Surrey Library is now closed, Deborah, but that is Doug McCallum who seems to be out of step with the rest of the Lower Mainland. It was no where near as windy here today. Was the wind there as cold as yesterday? I think that things changed on Friday when the US finally declared a National Emergency (two big words) or whatever that guy said. Did you pick up books at Chapters on Thursday? I was going to go to the one on Robson today but those library books were just too heavy to carry any further than I had to.

Mar 16, 5:07pm Top

Hi Meg my dear, just stopping by to say hello. We are both well and have taken the decision to try and stay in as much as possible to make sure Karen is OK for work. The weather has started to warm up slightly and it has been sunny and i hope to do a bit of pottering about in the garden by the end of the week.

I hope things are well with you despite the worldwide Coronavirus and send love and hugs from both of us dear friend.

Mar 16, 6:39pm Top

Hi John, good to hear that you are both doing ok. Staying home sounds like a good precaution. The weather here is good and people are hitting the trails to walk and bike etc as so many other things are closed down. I'm doing well. No hugs at this time but elbow bumps are a friendly substitute.

Mar 16, 6:41pm Top

I went to a meeting today just as the city of Port Coquitlam decided they were going to close their public buildings. They were putting up the closed signs as I walked in. No prior warning. That includes the library where I just put a hold on a book for book club because the Vancouver library has extended all due dates to April 25 and all of the copies of the book that I want are out. Chapters had it so I gave up and bought it.

I also went to a grocery store. No milk. The cashier said that they get milk shipments every night but it didn't come in for today. She said that is what happens when demand exceeds supply. Makes sense. I found milk in a larger grocery store, the one that was close to Chapters. In that same mall there is a Starbucks which is going grab and go only. So strange to see all the empty parking spots in that part of the lot.

I wonder what's going to close down next?

Mar 16, 7:27pm Top

My library is closing for a few weeks on Wednesday, Meg, so I might stop in tomorrow, just to make sure I have something to read. :)

Your pies look delicious.

Commute sounds really good.

Mar 16, 7:33pm Top

I'm a little behind on the threads these days, trying to get through my library books so I can return them before they lock up the book return slots (any day now).

So re the PoCo house slated for a tear down ~
>148 Familyhistorian: Did anyone contact Michael Kluckner?
He's the author of many books about the vanishing communities in BC. And very interested in historical houses throughout the lower mainland. Perhaps Michael can offer resources to counter-act the wanton destruction of our historical homes.

Mar 16, 9:45pm Top

>186 BLBera: Ooh, better get into the library, Beth. I lucked out by going yesterday, the Vancouver library closed down this afternoon. The pies were good. I shouldn't wait 20 years next time. Commute is a good one.

Mar 16, 9:48pm Top

>187 SandyAMcPherson: Aren't they extending the due dates, Sandy? I don't know what is happening about the historic house and what has been tried. Michael Kluckner has an interesting website.

Mar 18, 1:07am Top

The weather continues to be sunny and warm by the afternoon so today I met a friend for a walk. The walk took us to a local restaurant. It was still open but only allowed 50% capacity at this point. I took public transit to get to my friend's neighbourhood and there was no difficulty keeping the proper distance because there weren't very many people on the train even though it was rush hour when I went home.

Mar 18, 8:08am Top

Hi Meg, just a quick hello and hope that you're doing well - at least you've got more time now to read your library books.

Mar 18, 2:02pm Top

>191 karenmarie: Hi Karen, it is good to have more time to read the library books but I am getting a bit antsy. It is difficult to social isolate when you have to go out to find others.

Mar 18, 2:22pm Top

55. The Irish Inheritance by M J Lee

I am reading some of my own books in between all the library books and earlier on this month, when the world was still sane, I started a new mystery series, the Jayne Sinclair genealogical mysteries. Jayne, our genealogist, was an ex-police detective and used to taking care of herself which was a good thing because things got pretty dicey in The Irish Inheritance.

The clues to her client’s unknown father led back to the Ireland of the 1916 Easter Rising. There were chapters that showed what was happening back in that time while the other chapters followed Jayne’s investigation. But there was someone following Jayne. It was hit or miss if she would find out the truth before her investigation was shut down permanently.

Mar 18, 2:24pm Top

I'm at least a thread behind - just checking in and making sure all is well.

And now I want pie...

Mar 18, 4:30pm Top

Hi Meg, dropping in to wish you a happy Humpday as we're running out of "day" but...well...anyway. The genealogical mystery series sounds like a good example of a trend I like: the niche mystery, focusing on the more specialized causes for killing. I hope it continues to be rewarding!

Mar 18, 5:22pm Top

>194 BekkaJo: Things are good here, Bekka. I hope all is well with you and your family. There's nothing like homemade pie, is there?

Mar 18, 5:25pm Top

>195 richardderus: Hi Richard, still plenty of day here as it is only mid-afternoon. There are a few genealogical mystery series by different authors. It is a pretty good niche to get into because there are many, many people who are into genealogy.

Mar 18, 5:27pm Top

>1 Familyhistorian:) I would like visiting this museum.

Mar 18, 7:24pm Top

>198 Whisper1: We are proud of our small museum and the volunteers put a lot of time and effort into the exhibits. Thanks for your vote of confidence, Linda. Sadly, the museum is closed for the foreseeable future but the exhibit will be waiting when public buildings are opened again.

Mar 19, 2:52pm Top

>189 Familyhistorian: Yes, they are extending loans and no fines.

However, I have The Lost Future of Pepperharrow which has a longish wait list. Apparently, the staff may e-mail hold notices for a timed 'curbside' arrangement especially for hold pick ups. So it seems responsible to drop the book in the return slots if they're available (we have outer ones, so patrons don't have to go inside).

Mar 19, 3:27pm Top

>200 SandyAMcPherson: A curbside pick up of holds at the library sounds interesting, Sandy. The library where I get my holds just extended the due dates of everything including holds. There are no plans for curbside service. They are just encouraging use of their digital resources. I'm not sure what the other libraries closer to me are doing though. I better check that out because I put a book on hold at the Terry Fox Library in Port Coquitlam which I then went out and bought when that library closed. Maybe I better cancel that in case they start curbside service.

Mar 19, 4:01pm Top

56. I Hear the Sirens in the Street by Adrian McKinty

It took a while after I brought the book home from the library but once I dove into I Hear the Sirens in the Street I was hooked. In this, the second book in the Sean Duffy series, he was investigating the discovery of a torso in a suitcase. It had been frozen so the time of death was not readily apparent, but there was something to identify the partial remains, a tattoo which a little bit of investigation showed that the man had been an American.

So began a mystery that ranged from the troubled areas of Northern Ireland to the eastern US. This time not only were the forces of Northern Ireland brought into play but also the FBI and Secret Service. DeLorean also made an appearance.

Mar 20, 1:15pm Top

Hi Meg. Here is a little music to uplift:


It's terrific. Enjoy.

Mar 20, 1:56pm Top

>203 jessibud2: Thanks for that, Shelley. It was uplifting but the video also brought home how social people are making social distancing such a struggle.

Mar 20, 2:03pm Top

A common theme on many threads is the unexpected extra time people are finding because of self isolating at this time. You would think as a retired person that would be the case for me as well but, while there are less meetings, most of what I do is online - blogging, LT, writing for various genealogy newsletters etc. Added to that, many genealogical organizations are making webinars available to keep us going during these times of social isolation. It is a bit overwhelming.

Edited: Mar 20, 2:34pm Top

From yesterday's walk.

Mar 20, 2:41pm Top

>206 Familyhistorian: Looks a fair bit like home (eastern PA). Bare trees, but daffodils in full bloom.

Edited: Mar 20, 8:39pm Top

>207 weird_O: Daffodils really brighten things up, don't they, Bill? I expect more leaves on the trees shortly because the weather in the past few days has been warm and sunny.

Mar 21, 1:12am Top

>206 Familyhistorian: Looks lovely, Meg. I had a great walk around Garry Point park today and down the dyke. Lot of birds, some coyotes howling off in the marsh area. It was busy enough, but no problem with contracting Covid 19 while walking outdoors. At least it seems unlikely too me.

Mar 21, 1:38am Top

>209 vancouverdeb: I was surprised at how many people were on the walkway around Lafarge Lake today, Deborah. Some people were getting pretty close so I made for a less used pathway.

Mar 21, 5:52am Top

>206 Familyhistorian: Beautiful picture! Hope you're not feeling too overwhelmed with all the options. I guess there will be lots of time to look at many of them.

Mar 21, 6:58am Top

>206 Familyhistorian: Pretty setting! I am getting anxious to see some color.

Happy Saturday, Meg. Craziness continues here but I am still going into work. Got to deliver those bills and packages.

Mar 21, 3:03pm Top

>211 charl08: Thanks Charlotte, I love the signs of spring! It is strange to have the piles of library books for a lot longer than usual but I know how fast that time will run out if things are up and running again by their due date of April 25 added to that is the fact that there are too many to lug to the library to return them at the same time.

Mar 21, 3:06pm Top

>212 msf59: It was your remark on your thread about the lack of flowers that prompted me to take and post the picture, Mark. It's probably good to be in a regular routine at this time and I'm sure some of those packages are much appreciated by people stuck at home. I am as busy as ever as much of what I do is online.

Mar 21, 3:18pm Top

Normally I can leave the facility to do whatever I like, for example take a walk on the boardwalk or grocery shop.

Now they asked me, very politely!, to stay in my room. The dearly beloathèd roommate is in the hospital, so I don't have to put up with him, and it's extra time to skype with my Young Gentleman Caller (a designation that still works!), but this crud is just barely begun. The upswing is *just* getting momentum; the probability is, absent a vaccine, we're looking at multiple waves of infection over the course of months!

Everyone should read The Machine Stops as soon as possible.

Mar 21, 9:56pm Top

Mar 21, 10:57pm Top

>215 richardderus: Sounds like you are confined to quarters before most, Richard, but that makes sense given where you live. Fortunate that your roommate isn't there to share your space. It's hard to say how long this will last or if we will all be in lock down soon.

>216 BLBera: Thanks Beth. I'm getting out to see the signs of spring while I still can.

Mar 22, 4:24pm Top

I just wrote out my to do list of all the things I hope to accomplish in social isolation. It seems formidable and not very entertaining but it is probably best to use this time in social isolation wisely. *sigh* But first I am off for a walk outside while I still can.

Mar 22, 4:49pm Top

>218 Familyhistorian: - At night, in bed, I could fill a list with items of things I can/need to do while this is going on. Right now, I don't have the motivation to even write them down. Sheesh.

I also went for a short walk earlier. It is bright and sunny here but a tad chilly, only 0 degrees. After my walk, I cleaned up my front lawn a bit so I can now see the shoots coming up better. Spring still has a ways to go to reach us here.

Mar 22, 8:13pm Top

>219 jessibud2: I have been behind for weeks with people asking me for stuff and other deadlines, Shelley. That was my motivation to write a to do list. But even if you didn't write down a list it sounds like you were productive anyway.

I went out for a walk earlier today. It wasn't sunny but it was warm - 12C, so not bad especially when huffing up hill.

Mar 22, 8:58pm Top

It was a cloudy day today but the forsythia added some colour.

Mar 22, 9:42pm Top

>221 Familyhistorian: My that is vivid, Meg. So vivid it looks coloured in!

Mar 22, 11:05pm Top

>222 PaulCranswick: That's probably just the contrast, Paul. Nice to see some colour on a gloomy day.

Mar 22, 11:31pm Top

57. The Italian Cure by Melodie Campbell

This is a difficult review to write given the current state of the world but it is an ER book so needs to be done.

A short, quick read, The Italian Cure was about Charlie, a girl recently dumped by her boyfriend whose aunt wins an Italian tour for two and takes her along. Of course, she was the youngest one there, so she catches the eye of the handsome tour guide. Could he be the cure for her broken heart or maybe it will be the driver of the bus? It was a lighthearted romance among Italian tourist spots.

Mar 23, 4:49am Top

It was nice enough day today, Meg. As you say, overcast and somewhat cold, but I had nice walk around Garry Point and down West Dyke here Richmond Dave and Poppy came along for the walk.

>224 Familyhistorian: I think light and cheerful books are good reads for these times. Nice review.

Mar 23, 6:59am Top

Hi Meg!

>221 Familyhistorian: We have a beautiful forsythia about that size. It's actually 3 1-gallon forsythias planted 4 feet apart in I-forget-what-year. It's already past flowering this year, but here's a pic from 2018:

>224 Familyhistorian: Everything is filtered through the coronavirus lens, isn't it? Movie hugs, group shots, books. This is the new normal, alas.

Mar 23, 1:53pm Top

>225 vancouverdeb: I found it fairly warm Sunday, Deborah, but I am away from the water. Probably walking up hill made it warmer too. Nice that you had companionship on your walk.

Light and cheerful books are good right now but I find I am reading more mysteries right now as well. I think it is a case of wanting the mystery all wrapped up in the end, which I wish would happen to many things in real life at the moment.

Mar 23, 1:59pm Top

>226 karenmarie: That's a beauty, Karen. I love seeing the colour at this time of year.

It seems like our new normal to distance ourselves from others at this point. Well, unless we are in our invisible teens or 20s.

Mar 23, 2:02pm Top

>221 Familyhistorian: When I lived where there was "real winter" i was a big fan of forsythia. It doesn't grow here so I especially enjoyed your photo.

Mar 23, 2:05pm Top

Happy Monday!

Nice to see some flowering shrubs. I suspect here where I live, I will have to wait another month or so for anything to flower.

Mar 23, 2:44pm Top

Hi Meg, boy, things are changing from day to day right now. Apparently too many people went to parks and beaches over the weekend and didn't observe social distancing very well so now many of the Greater Vancouver parks, nature walks and beaches are being closed. I feel sorry for the young people who just don't seem to get it - I remember being young and this would have been terrible for me at that age when all I wanted to do was hang out with my friends. I am thankful that I am at an age where having to stay home with my books isn't all that bad. I ordered a couple of jigsaw puzzles this morning so I could have some variety in my activities. We have been going for short walks just outside on our street since the weather has been so lovely. Take care of yourself and stay healthy. :)

Mar 23, 5:28pm Top

58. Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me by Mariko Tamaki and Rosemary Valero-O’Connell

Freddy was a quiet girl going out with Laura Dean, an outgoing athletic party loving girl, a clear case of opposites attracting. Only problem was that Freddy kept getting dumped and then went running back when Laura smiled her way. It was typical high school drama enhanced by the illustrations in Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me.

The question was, would Freddy let Laura call the shots? Would she always be available when Laura beckoned ready to drop everything and everybody just to be with the one she thought she loved? Read it and find out.

Mar 23, 5:33pm Top

>229 RebaRelishesReading: Forsythia is a wonderful harbinger of spring but I'm not sure that I would classify where I live as having a "real winter", Reba. I grew up in Montreal which is has what I consider "real winter".

Mar 23, 5:35pm Top

>230 figsfromthistle: Hi Anita, we have been seeing flowers since February around here which is a big reason that I live here instead of other parts of Canada. We have the longest spring. I hope your flowers start popping up soon.

Edited: Mar 23, 5:46pm Top

>231 DeltaQueen50: You had me worried for a minute there Judy when you said nature walks were closed. I checked for Port Coquitlam and the walkways are open. The playgrounds are closed. Same for Port Moody and Coquitlam. Even the Coquitlam Crunch is still open. So we can still get out and get some exercise.

It is hard on young people because they are used to being close to their friends. There are a lot of kids in the complex where I live and I know that it is hard for them to keep their distance and also hard for the older ones to listen and do what adults tell them because it couldn't possibly apply to them.

Where did you order your jigsaws from? I have a supply of old jigsaws but a couple of new ones would be welcome not that I really have time to do one.

Mar 23, 6:09pm Top

>121 Familyhistorian: I need to read that one!

>122 Familyhistorian: That one is already in the BlackHole. I need to get a copy of it soon.

>127 Familyhistorian: Adding that one to the BlackHole!

>141 Familyhistorian: Already in the BlackHole - one of these days I will actually get a copy.

>161 Familyhistorian: > 163 >173 Familyhistorian: >193 Familyhistorian: Adding those to the BlackHole too.

>202 Familyhistorian: I already have that series in the BlackHole thanks to Mamie's warbling about it.

>206 Familyhistorian: Very pretty!

>232 Familyhistorian: Already in the BlackHole or I would be adding it again.

That teaches me to get 100+ messages behind on your thread, Meg! Stay healthy and safe.

Mar 23, 6:30pm Top

>206 Familyhistorian: Sure am loving the flowers there. Lovely photo.

I miss daffodils so much. They were always in abundance all around Victoria, where I grew up. And bonus! Apparently still are because the deer don't like them, whereas tulips are nibbled to the ground.

Mar 23, 6:55pm Top

>236 alcottacre: Hi Stasia, only 100 posts behind? Your thread is at the top of my list with 234 unread. It looks kind of scary. Not sure how that happened and your thread is not alone. It might have something to do with all the other things I am behind in and, of course, the books just dying to be read. Same to you with the healthy and safe wishes.

Mar 23, 7:09pm Top

>237 SandyAMcPherson: It's nice to see the flowers coming up, Sandy. I didn't realize that Victoria had deer. I wonder if that is still the case. We used to have deer here about 20 or 25 years ago but now our wildlife is a little less picturesque and not that much into flowers.

Mar 24, 9:48pm Top

Just watching the news and one of the groups that our government is worried about is the homeless population. Especially the one on Vancouver's downtown east side, not only can't they social distance but one affect of the mostly closed borders is that street drugs are getting scarce and there are fears that Fentanyl od's will increase once again.

There are so many things that are being affected that I would never even think of.

Edited: Mar 25, 12:37am Top

So far places like Gary Point park and dyke trails are open in Richmond. I'm very thankful for that. Dave and I thought we'd solved our lack on TP situation. I ordered some for delivery along with some other non perishables to arrive Friday evening. However, a friend of mine said she too had ordered TP online from Save On, but no delivery of said TP occurred. Dave is considering heading out to Save on Foods Seniors Hour from 7 - 8 am on his days off in hopes of scoring some TP. Strange times! He is 63, but I think he could pass as a senior. ;-)

Mar 25, 1:46am Top

>241 vancouverdeb: Good luck to Dave on passing as a senior and finding tp. Every time I have been in Save On there is none. It might be a supplier issue because of all those people with rooms full of the stuff. I would snag some if I saw some just in case but I haven't seen any on my travels. Today I stopped in at Safeway. The shelves were pretty bare and the baking aisle - no sugar and barely any flour. I guess all those people stuck at home are baking up a storm.

Our trails are still open here as well, Deborah. I think that people are pretty good at keeping their distance unless it is on the path around Lafarge Lake where there were just too many people when I was there a couple of days ago.

Mar 25, 4:05am Top

>240 Familyhistorian: one of the groups that our government is worried about is the homeless population I think here there are some schemes to put the London homeless up in some of the hotels that are empty.

This crisis is really bringing out the best and the worst in people. Some hotel owners are closing their hotels to the public but keeping them open for free to members of the NHS who need to stay apart from their families, and so also ensuring that all their staff retain their jobs. Other hotel owners are throwing staff out on their ear when they close.

Mar 25, 9:44am Top

Hi, Meg.

I'm glad you enjoyed Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me. Me, too.

I'm also loving that Sean Duffy series. They're all good, aren't they, and the most recent one, Police at the Station, is now my favorite.

Mar 25, 11:51am Top

>235 Familyhistorian: I had trouble finding a site that had puzzles in stock but I ended up getting them at the Mary Maxim site. They specialize in wool and craft supplies but they also carry puzzles. There were some "out of stocks" but I managed to find a couple so now I am just waiting to hear that they have been shipped and aren't on back order.

Mar 25, 12:26pm Top

Homelessness is a problem here in San Diego too. Yesterday they moved some homeless families from space in one shelter into hotel rooms to give them more space. The shelter space is going to be used to allow beds for singles in the shelters to be spaced at least 6' part. In addition part of the convention center is being fitted for single homeless people both to provide greater spacing as well as to have room to get more people off the streets. The mayor and civic leaders do an hour-long press conference each day on a different topic related to current situation and yesterday;s was about the homeless situation. I was impressed.

Mar 25, 2:28pm Top

>243 SandDune: Sounds like some hotel owners have their hearts in the right place, Rhian. It will be interesting to see what happens to the hardhearted ones after the dust settles. This crisis is really bring out the best and worst in people, as you say.

Mar 25, 2:31pm Top

>244 jnwelch: Laura Dean was a good one, Joe, although the teenage angst in the beginning was a bit hard to wade through, but then its that way in real life too, isn't it? I've been getting my Sean Duffy books from the library so have to wait to continue with the series but I do have a few other books here to be going on with.

Mar 25, 2:36pm Top

>245 DeltaQueen50: The Mary Maxim site is a dangerous one, Judy. It looks like they have lots of puzzles and they have a 4 for 3 price on now. Not that I need 4 puzzles!

Mar 25, 2:41pm Top

>246 RebaRelishesReading: It sounds like your homeless are being thought of in the pandemic planning, Reba. I'm not sure exactly what is happening with our homeless but many of them are resistant to sheltering inside and have a tent city that is occupying a downtown Vancouver park which has been a problem for months now. If the pandemic hits there it will be bad because of lack of sanitation and social distancing.

Mar 25, 3:04pm Top

59. Unnatural Death by Dorothy L. Sayers

As I am sure that any 75er who has been trying to keep up with the threads knows, Unnatural Death was this month’s Wimsey group read. Most of these books are on my shelves, so I know that I read them at some point but I don’t remember the plots, which is probably a good thing in a mystery reread.

I enjoy these books for the picture they paint of this period in English upper-class life as much as the puzzle of the mystery. The mystery was interesting, the casual racism common at the time as was the expendability of the lower classes. It was another fun entry in the Wimsey series.

Mar 25, 5:15pm Top

>238 Familyhistorian: I have pretty much decided that it is impossible to keep up with anyone's threads, Meg, especially right now with everyone home and posting more than normal :)

>246 RebaRelishesReading: It sounds as if the leaders there are keeping everyone in the loop, which is terrific. I am glad to know that the homeless have not been discounted as a concern.

>251 Familyhistorian: I am a Lord Peter Wimsey fan too.

Mar 25, 6:52pm Top

>232 Familyhistorian: Hooray for Laura Dean! I enjoyed this one too.

Happy Wednesday, Meg. I hope you are having a good week. A nice day here in Chicagoland and I was off. Yah!

Mar 25, 8:43pm Top

>252 alcottacre: I was way behind even before everybody was home and posting more than usual. I just got caught up with you yesterday. I hope things are going well for you and that staying home has a positive effect on your CFS, Stasia.

Mar 25, 8:45pm Top

>253 msf59: It was a nice day here too, Mark, but it looks like after this we are in for a week of rain. I got out to a nearby park for a walking with a friend, at a proper distance of course. Did you get any birding in?

Mar 26, 7:29am Top

Hi Meg!

Glad to see another Lord Peter read.

Mar 26, 3:30pm Top

>251 Familyhistorian: Unnatural Death is the one Sayers I could never read.

Mar 26, 6:29pm Top

60. Murder by the Book by Claire Harman

The crime, a murder, happened in 1840 and shocked London. Many a murder happened in the capital, that was not the shocking part, it was because the victim was a nobleman, Lord William Russell, in his own bed. This was the crime explored in Murder by the Book.

The crime itself, unlike a murder mystery, was hard to understand from the viewpoint of motive. It did, however, provide a jumping off point for the author to explore the social life of London at the time. Then, as now, reasons for the murder were laid at the prevailing social climate, in this case Newgate Novelists were accused of glamourizing a life of crime, which, as everyone knows, leads easily to murder.

It was an interesting look at murder and investigative techniques in the early Victorian period. What it was best at was providing a slice of life in the capital, what plays and books were influencing the public and one of the songs that was going the rounds, Nix my Dolly, Pals Fake Away.

Mar 26, 6:33pm Top

>256 karenmarie: The group read is helping me along with the Lord Peter reads, Karen. It looks like I am going to be out of sync with next month's read. It is Lord Peter Views the Body, which I don't have. It is short stories so I don't want to buy it so will have to wait until I can get it from the library.

Mar 26, 6:34pm Top

>257 magicians_nephew: Why couldn't you read Unnatural Death, Jim? Is it the casual racism?

Mar 26, 6:56pm Top

Yesterday a friend let me know that Costco's senior hours are on Tuesdays and Thursdays. This morning I got up earlier than usual and headed out there. There were lots of people ahead of me and people were herded into lines in the parking lot. It was a good thing it wasn't raining yet and I was glad of my winter coat because it was only 4 C (hey, I live close to Vancouver, we consider that cold).

They had TP and paper towels! So I was able to get some in case I run out before the end of social isolation. I would have gotten more about now even if things were normal. What was best about the whole outing is that there were books for sale! A couple did end up in my shopping cart including the new Hilary Mantel. I guess that means I really should finish reading Wolf Hall for the first time.

Mar 26, 7:04pm Top

Meg--So glad your Costco trip was a success! Hurray up with Wolf Hall already. ; )

Mar 26, 7:30pm Top

>261 Familyhistorian: Glad you were able to find paper towels. I went to the grocery store to pick up a few things I needed. I decided to stop and shop when I saw there were few cars in the parking lot. I was able to maintain safe social distance inside the store. While a few things were running low, I was able to find everything on my list. I did settle for plain cooking spray instead of my normal canola spray. It will do this time. Hopefully the next time I need it, I can get the my normal spray.

Mar 26, 7:54pm Top

>262 Berly: Hi Kim, I was happy to get the Costco trip done. I now have baking stuff too. The way that stuff has been disappearing from the grocery shelves has me picturing a whole lot of parents baking with their kids.

Wolf Hall is a very slow read for me. I was just blown away about all the LTers breezing through rereads in barely any time at all.

Mar 26, 7:58pm Top

>263 thornton37814: You were fortunate to find most of the stuff that you need, Lori. Here the supply is hit and miss depending on which grocery store you go to and when. The smaller stores are having problems getting their overnight deliveries in because of high demand and I haven't seen any paper towel or toilet paper in any grocery store for a couple of weeks now so it was a relief to get some today.

Edited: Mar 27, 12:32am Top

61. Before the Dawn: Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors by Nicholas Wade

I am fascinated by history and one of the aspects of history that I sometimes explore is ancient history. Before the Dawn: Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors was about our prehistoric past. It looked at how this has been studied through various disciplines and what clues our current societies can give us as we look into their evolution.

Strangely, history was not written in stone. Like many other things, theories about history change over time and so do our abilities to find out more through research. The history in the book was very interesting but I was reminded that this was a book published in the first decade of this century. The book used contemporary interpretations of the DNA explorations then extent. This had the paradoxical effect of making this history about the ancient world somewhat dated. It was a good basic grounded in the subject of prehistory in spite of that.

Mar 27, 8:23pm Top

>250 Familyhistorian: Many of our homeless are resistant too but I think there's a great effort to "encourage" them to get off the street now. The shelters are also being enlarged so each person will have a safe amount of space. Sure hope it helps.

Mar 27, 8:28pm Top

Meg, I took delivery of nearly 300 rolls of toilet paper today! :-) I'd looked at 6 different stores and no luck. Ah, I see you found some TP at Costco. One of my son's said the same. I had not been there. Dave told me that today there were line ups outside Save On Foods and Safeway. He could not be bothered to wait. I guess it will be me out tomorrow. I told my immediate family that for a mere $20 , I would sell them one roll of toilet paper. LOL!

Mar 28, 8:54am Top

Hi Meg!

>259 Familyhistorian: Does your library have e-books? Our library is still loaning out e-books. The Librarian and I spoke the other day – the library had been closed for a week by then – but she was busy authorizing new on-line library card requests and I’m assuming it was for e-books.

>261 Familyhistorian: Yay for a successful Costco run. I’m avoiding it like the ...er... plague. There are things I’d like to get from there but nothing I absolutely need.

>264 Familyhistorian: I abandoned Wolf Hall about halfway through years ago and right now nothing seems to be working but mysteries, my favorite genre.

Mar 28, 1:06pm Top

>266 Familyhistorian: How weird it feels to have a read about ancient history feel dated! I read some E.A. Wallis Budge books and was genuinely shocked by how very, very different our view of Khmt is than his romantical Ancient Egypt. Disorienting, if you'll please pardon the wordplay.

Mar 28, 4:53pm Top

>267 RebaRelishesReading: Here they are repurposing some of the closed civic centres to house the homeless to get enough of them off the street to help with social distancing. They are also looking to supply a good drug source which I find interesting and wonder if it will lead to social change in that area. I hope the measures will help in your area, Reba, and here too.

Mar 28, 4:57pm Top

>268 vancouverdeb: 300 rolls, that should have you set for awhile, Deborah. I haven't seen lineups outside Save On or Safeway but then I haven't ventured in that direction in the last few days. We have a huge Save On so I will be surprised but not shocked if there are line ups when I have to brave the crowds to get milk at the beginning of the week. Good luck with your toilet paper dealing!

Mar 28, 5:03pm Top

>266 Familyhistorian: This one sounds good, Meg. Stay well.

Mar 28, 5:05pm Top

>269 karenmarie: Hi Karen, my library has e-books and all kinds of other digital goodies from the look of it although I couldn't get them to work for me when I ventured on the site. I have an e-reader which I got years ago and have never finished a book on. So, I'm thinking that e-books don't work for me.

Well, I would have avoided Costco but it seemed like they had what I needed, tp and paper towel. Books were a bonus. I'm still working my way through Wolf Hall slowly. I probably didn't help that I started Jerusalem at the same time and that tome (all 1262 pages) is languishing as well. Enjoy your mysteries.

Mar 28, 5:08pm Top

>270 richardderus: Dated history books happen more often than you would think, Richard. Like everything else, history goes through fashion, in history's case theories of the moment. It's because much of history is interpretation and when cutting edge DNA discoveries are brought into the story, well, they don't stay cutting edge for long.

Mar 28, 5:09pm Top

>273 BLBera: It was a good overview, Beth. Hoping you are doing well and coping with the social distancing.

Edited: Mar 28, 5:34pm Top

62. A Purely Private Matter by Darcie Wilde

In the second Rosalind Thorne mystery, A Purely Private Matter, the reader was taken into life behind stage in a Georgian theatre. It was also a time when a husband could sue another man for criminal conversation (for adultery with his wife who was, at that time, considered to be his property). A fractious couple was at the centre of Rosalind’s case in this book and the other man named in the husband’s suit was an actor. Of course, there was a murder. It was up to Rosalind to get to the bottom of the mystery with the help of the bow street runner, Harkness.

The period details in this series are interesting and the romance between Rosalind and Harkness as well as the one between Rosalind and her former beau, the Duke, have me speculating about the outcome.

Mar 28, 5:36pm Top

The rains have returned but I went out for a walk today anyway. The birds at Lafarge Park are having a field day with no sports teams on the fields and very few walkers braving the rain. There were ducks, geese, crows and robins all over.

Mar 29, 2:42pm Top

>257 magicians_nephew: just that Sayers seemed to be of two minds about "Miss Climpson" - showing her brave and resourceful and also a little bit of a ninny.

And that the plot seems mechanical and clanky.

Upon the work of Walter Landor
I am unfit to write with candor.
If you can read it, well and good;
But as for me, I never could.

-- Miss Dorothy Parker

Mar 29, 2:49pm Top

>271 Familyhistorian: I hope so too, Meg. Take care out there.

Mar 29, 2:57pm Top

>279 magicians_nephew: Ah, so you did read it or enough of it to form your opinion about Miss Climpson, Jim. I didn't have a problem with her being resourceful and a ninny as women often show both aspects in their character because of their strange upbringing.

Mar 29, 2:59pm Top

>280 RebaRelishesReading: We will see what happens, Reba. According to last night's update on the pandemic BC might be beginning to flatten the curve so there was some cautious optimism.

Mar 29, 7:11pm Top

Wow, I got here before you created another thread! I skimmed and sometimes stopped yo read number 2 on through. It was a little eerie to read of more normal times as far back as January!

Your reading is quite exceptional, frequent and eclectic. I might pick up a title or two, but for now I'll just say hello before it's time to say 'New thread'. And to say also that I love the Sean Duffy books and the author's ability to present actual history woven into the case at hand.

See you next thread!

Mar 30, 1:26am Top

>283 ffortsa: Hi Judy, this thread is getting a bit long, isn't it? I am so far behind with many threads that I keep on reading from back when times were normal knowing that they are going to get strange really fast only we couldn't see it at the time. It's kind of like watching a suspenseful film the second time through when you know what is hiding behind the next corner.

The Sean Duffy's are really good but I am dependent on the library for them so the next book in the series will have to wait for a while but I might have a book or two around here to tide me over.

Mar 30, 6:29am Top

Hi, Meg. I hope you had a good weekend. My wife and I are continuing to work, but the virus cases are really beginning to climb in Illinois, so we have no idea what will happen.

Yes, I did bird last Wednesday. It was a beautiful day and I saw many special birds. I NEED to post some photos. I stayed in yesterday. It was blustery and chilly here.

Mar 30, 10:05am Top

>284 Familyhistorian: I'm lucky that my library, while physically closed, has a robust e-book collection, and that's how I've been reading the Duffy. Alas, a distraction from the zillions of books on my shelf, of course.

Mar 30, 10:39am Top

>279 magicians_nephew: Haha Dorothy Parker was akin to Ogden Nash in so many ways.

Mar 30, 1:27pm Top

>285 msf59: We are watching the numbers in the US climb, Mark. Very scary. Both of you stay safe and healthy. I hope your weather improves so you have more chances to get out and do what you enjoy. That's important right now.

Mar 30, 1:29pm Top

>286 ffortsa: That makes sense, Judy. I don't do e-books myself so my Sean Duffy reads will have to wait. I do, however, have 16 library books at home so I should be busy reading those.

Mar 30, 1:33pm Top

>287 PaulCranswick: I my search for elucidation on your post, I came across the following quiz from the NY Public Library, Paul https://www.nypl.org/blog/2016/08/19/witty-one-liners.

Edited: Mar 30, 7:37pm Top

The number of cases here in Tennessee have almost doubled since 4 days ago (957 to 1834). The governor finally issued a "safer at home" order which begins at 11:59 pm tomorrow night and lasts two weeks.

Mar 30, 8:34pm Top

>291 thornton37814: That is concerning, Lori. I hope the new measures slow things down in Tennessee.

Mar 30, 9:13pm Top

>292 Familyhistorian: We just pray it isn't too little, too late.

Mar 30, 11:53pm Top

>277 Familyhistorian: Nice peek at Book 2 in this series.
I'm reading And Dangerous to Know, book 3, my first go at the Rosalind Thorne character. Normally I'm particular about reading from the beginning but because the earlier books are not available as e-Books on my library system, I wanted to leapt in. Lots of praise for this series and I agree, so Book 3 it is.

I'm enjoying the appearance of some characters I first learned of in Georgette Heyer's Regency novels. The writing in Wilde's book is more suspenseful and definitely more thriller-esque (than Heyer's). I'm not sure that at this time I want that level "excitement" but I will finish the novel. The story is well-plotted and I like the style.

Mar 31, 12:43am Top

>293 thornton37814: I hope so too, Lori.

Mar 31, 12:51am Top

>294 SandyAMcPherson: I find them to be nice escapist reading, Sandy. At least it is a time period different than our own. Hope you enjoy it.

Group: 75 Books Challenge for 2020

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