WHAT ARE YOU READING? - Part 5

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WHAT ARE YOU READING? - Part 5

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1AnnieMod
Set 24, 2019, 8:10pm

With the fall officially here in the Northern hemisphere and spring in full swing in the Southern one, what is everyone reading?

2thorold
Set 25, 2019, 5:58am

Very autumnal weather here over the past few days, so I haven't done much travelling and my e-reader has had a bit of time off while I concentrate on library books, which means I'm still only halfway through An orchestra of minorities - and it hasn't really quite grabbed me yet, but I haven't given up on it.

In the meantime I've finished Island story, a bike-tour of the UK by a young man concerned to document the damage done by years of Tory misrule, and read another Spark novel, The Mandelbaum Gate, which is about Jerusalem in the early sixties, and therefore far less politically-sensitive than Dan Taylor. ;-)

I've now started Un roman français by Frédéric Beigbeder, yet another memoir pretending to be a novel (or vice-versa?).

3dchaikin
Set 25, 2019, 9:13am

The Handmaid’s Tale, and, on audio, Quichotte.

>2 thorold: regarding An Orchestra of Minorities - You’re little comment has me thinking of this and what I liked (the reader especially, on audio). My critical thought is different on audio.

4RidgewayGirl
Set 25, 2019, 9:24am

I'm reading On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong, which is hampered by the truly gorgeous writing (Vuong is also a poet) which makes the bleak story he's telling sometimes overly vivid. It is slowly becoming more hope-filled.

I'm also reading an Akashic Noir collection of short crime stories, Berlin Noir, in which some stories are stronger than others. And I've just started Emma Donaghue's newest, Akin and Thomas Mullen's Lightning Men.

5japaul22
Set 25, 2019, 9:26am

>4 RidgewayGirl: Oh good, I'm eager to read your review of Akin.

6torontoc
Set 25, 2019, 9:36am

7AlisonY
Set 25, 2019, 11:27am

I really enjoyed Wild: A Journey from Lost to Found - very inspiring and gutsy. While I figure out what novel I'm going to pick up next, I've started The Nordic Guide to Living 10 Years Longer by Dr Bertil Marklund. That will be a quick, short read, but it looks fun (unless he suggests too many difficult healthy things I need to adopt).

8shadrach_anki
Set 25, 2019, 1:22pm

While I have a number of books I am currently in the middle of, my primary focus at the moment is reading The Count of Monte Cristo for my book group in October. Unabridged it is 1243 pages (Robin Buss translation), and I have 1000 pages to go. I can read that much in two weeks...right?

I also started The Spaceship Next Door in audio, as it is very different in both genre and tone from my other reading.

9lilisin
Set 25, 2019, 7:16pm

>8 shadrach_anki:

It's a riveting adventure story so it is totally doable in two weeks!

10AlisonY
Set 26, 2019, 4:41am

I've set my 10 year old daughter on picking me out my next book again as my TBR pile has become somewhat overwhelming. Pick of the week was A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley.

11rhian_of_oz
Set 26, 2019, 11:03am

I'm reading Native Tongue for bookclub. I first read this must be close to 30 years ago and reread it multiple times, though probably not in the last 20 years. I'm not sure I'm going to be able to be objective about this one.

12rachbxl
Set 26, 2019, 11:33am

>10 AlisonY: I think I might adopt that method next time I'm in a book funk.

I'm reading La vraie vie, a rather odd recent novel by Belgian writer Adeline Dieudonné (so far we've had an ice-cream man killed when his canister of whipped cream explodes, the narrator's younger brother kidnapping and eviscerating the neighbourhood cats (and now their mother's pet goat), and several other bizarre episodes). After 17 years here, I can attest to the fact that various aspects of life in Belgium are quite surreal, but to call this 'la vraie vie' ('real life') is going a bit far, surely. I'm going to finish it, though, because in a strange way, I quite like it (which nicely sums up my feelings about this country).

I'm also reading La tresse, a recent French best-seller by Laetitia Colombani, about three women, one in India, one in Sicily, one in the USA, all linked by a plait of hair (that's what 'tresse' in the title means). I might be wondering how they were linked, except that I know, because my daughter has a children's picture book version of it.

13ELiz_M
Set 26, 2019, 12:11pm

>10 AlisonY: If you are not familiar with King Lear a review of it might enhance Smiley's book.

14rocketjk
Set 26, 2019, 12:23pm

I'm about 2/3 of the way through The Masters by C.P. Snow. This is the 5th novel in Snow's "Strangers and Brothers" series. I'm enjoying the book very much. It's a novel that could easily be tedious, as it's all about the politics of an internal election in a Cambridge college during the 1930s. So what? Who cares? But the clear, uncluttered writing style and Snow's sympathy for his characters and insights into human nature create, for me, a delightful reading experience.

15AlisonY
Set 27, 2019, 3:58am

>13 ELiz_M: thanks - will do.

16baswood
Set 27, 2019, 9:34am

I am about to start Hermsprong by Robert Bage

17bragan
Set 30, 2019, 6:32pm

I'm now reading During-the-Event by Roger Wall. Many thanks to Lois and Jean for passing this one along to me! Although I'm not very far in, and haven't yet decided quite what I think about it.

18tonikat
Out 1, 2019, 11:41am

still working through wise thoughts for every day and you are the beloved and more intermittently the imitation of christ

I've been working through Brian Patten's Collected Love Poems since February or so, very beautiful and inspiring. I also read more Rumi and of him and also Shams. I'm trying to read a poem a day from selection of classic poems illustrated by Jackie Morris.

I need to get back to The Secret Garden and also move on with Robert Macfarlane's The Old Ways. But having finished Rites of Passage (i'll read on there I hope) am finding my way to committing to what to dive fully into. I'm also thinking of several unfinished books part finished - including the third in the deptford trilogy which may fit my Jungian reading and also want to get back to Blake and Dickinson.

19thorold
Out 1, 2019, 12:10pm

Finished Robinson, my seventh (!) Muriel Spark novel of Q3; as we go into the new quarter I’m still halfway through An orchestra of minorities (I think Dan’s right, it would be better on audio) and I’m also halfway through Los pasos perdidos, which seems to have lots more music in it than Obioma’s orchestra does...

20benitastrnad
Out 1, 2019, 5:41pm

I finished my first book for this month. I read Good Rain: Across Time and Terrain in the Pacific Northwest by Timothy Egan. This book was written in 1990 and at the time Egan was the Pacific Northwest correspondent for the New York Times. Now he is a well known author of nonfiction books with a National Book Award winner to his credits. This book - Good Rain - is in many ways a companion to Egan's later (1998) book Lasso the Wind.

The book starts with a chapter on Egan taking his grandfather's ashes to the headwaters of a river in the Northwest. It then morphs as Egan becomes interested in what has happened to the land that he grew up on and that his grandfather helped to settle. As Egan does the research he comes across one of the best books about the early Northwest that was written and Egan begins to follow the trail of Theodore Winthrop as Winthrop travels by foot, canoe, and horseback in 1853 from Vancouver, B.C. to Astoria, Oregon. Each chapter of Egan's book is about a different section of the trail as followed by Winthrop and Egan contrasts the past and the present as he makes his journey following the same trail. The two journeys turn out to be very different. Egan manages to maintain a fair hand in dealing with all the changes, but there are times when his own prejudices show. He laments the loss of estuaries, free flowing rivers, and most of all the old growth forests. At the end of the book he says, "The most economically distressed counties in the Northwest are those that depend on logging for their livelihood. The most prosperous are those that have unchained themselves from their mills." (p. 253) But at the end of his last chapter he says, "Standing above the Columbia today, the river that carries water from all parts of the Pacific Northwest to the ocean, uniting deserts and glaciers, forest and farmland, cities and sage country, I'm trouble by this paradox. Winthrop thought the land here would change a man, not the other way around; still, at the ebb of the twentieth century, we have yet to prove him entirely wrong." (p. 250)

There were times as I was reading this book, that I wondered if the statistics that he quoted would still be true because it is 30 years after the publication of the book, but in general I was pleasantly surprised to find that the book was still relevant and generally true. The biggest question I have is about the explosion of population that the Northwest has seen in the last thirty years and its effect on the environment. I would think that it has got to be the biggest problem for the area at this point in time.

I read Lasso the Wind last year and loved it and I had the same reaction to this one.

21avaland
Out 2, 2019, 5:59am

Reading Jeanette Winterson's latest Frankissstein: A Love Story.

22AlisonY
Out 2, 2019, 10:46am

>21 avaland: that looks really interesting. Will be interested in your thoughts.

23tonikat
Out 2, 2019, 11:06am

>20 benitastrnad: very interesting review.

I’ve only read a little Winterson, also very interesting.

24rocketjk
Out 2, 2019, 1:21pm

I finished The Masters, the fifth book in C.P. Snow's "Strangers and Brothers" series. I'd enjoyed the first four books of the series, though I was not expecting to find this one particularly compelling. The book is about the politics and personalities involved in the election of a new Master for an unnamed college within Cambridge University in the 1930s. Doesn't seem like an electrifying premise in this day and age. However, in Snow's hands, the individuals involved come alive, and I found the book to be much more enjoyable than I expected it to be. Although you might miss a reference or two, I think you could read this novel as a standalone. My more in-depth comments are on my "rocketjk catches up in 2019" thread here on CR: https://www.librarything.com/topic/309495.

I working my way through some anthology/collection entries right now, but haven't decided which full-length work to read next.

25baswood
Out 3, 2019, 4:59pm

I am reading The Coming Race by Edward Bulwer-Lytton

27lilisin
Out 4, 2019, 3:11am

Finding a lot of humor in Jules Verne's La chasse au meteore (The Meteor Hunt). Verne is always a good pickup when looking for a light adventure read with humor. Hope to finish it this weekend.

28thorold
Out 4, 2019, 5:24am

>25 baswood: It will be interesting to hear what you think - people these days only seem to read Lytton to say how awful he is, and that book is one where most of us have a hard time getting past the unfortunate title...
(To be fair, I know someone who set out on a thesis project about Lytton with the aim of telling the world how wrong the popular prejudice against him is, but ended up hating Lytton's books more than anyone...)

29ELiz_M
Out 4, 2019, 6:36am

Still reading my daily dose of Anniversaries: From a Year in the Life of Gesine Cresspahl. I just finished The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner and next up is a nominal re-read of Orlando, which I read more than 20 years ago.

30thorold
Out 4, 2019, 9:42am

After reading The public image yesterday evening, I've only got three more Muriel Spark novels to go on my readthrough: in a flurry of misguided enthusiasm I've downloaded all three onto my Kobo...

I've also been reading Drive your plow over the bones of the dead, which was a lot more fun than the title might suggest, and I've started Margaret Drabble's The pure gold baby, which I somehow missed when it came out.

31tonikat
Out 4, 2019, 12:32pm

> I did start Blake and Tradition and very happy to have done so, a long way to go but lovely company, much understanding and love in fact.

32rocketjk
Editado: Out 4, 2019, 12:47pm

I've started The Liberation of Mankind: The Story of Man's Struggle for the Right to Think by Hendrik Willem Van Loon. Van Loon was a very popular writer in his day, which was the 1920s through the 1940s, more or less. This book was originally published in 1926. It is a relatively light-hearted but still substantial historical survey, in Van Loon's words, "dedicated to the subject of 'tolerance.'" Over the first 30 pages, Van Loon more or less defines "tolerance" as a given society's willingness to allow individuals to think and speak outside of the dominant paradigm, cultural and/or religious, of that society. It will be interesting to see how Van Loon's early to mid-20th century perspectives on this subject coincide with or diverge from our own.

33avaland
Out 4, 2019, 5:38pm

>22 AlisonY: It's quite a book....

>30 thorold: I loved the Tokarczuk! What a smart & clever author.

34RidgewayGirl
Out 4, 2019, 7:26pm

>30 thorold: I'm eager to read Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead and I'm equally eager to find out what you think about it.

35thorold
Out 5, 2019, 9:00am

>33 avaland: >34 RidgewayGirl: Yes, I enjoyed it very much. Review in my Q4 thread.

Finished The pure gold baby (good, but maybe not my favourite Drabble) and another Muriel Spark, Symposium.

I've moved on to Spark's take on Lord Lucan, Aiding and abetting. Not sure what's next after that...

36rhian_of_oz
Out 5, 2019, 12:42pm

I caved and bought the final three novellas of the Murderbot series on Tuesday with the view to reading them over a period of time. I've already read Artificial Condition and Rogue Protocol.

37Nickelini
Out 5, 2019, 3:43pm

>20 benitastrnad:
That sounds interesting.

I'm exactly half way through Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, which I have to read for book club Monday night. After liking the first page, I rather disliked the next 70 pages or so, but now I'm quite enjoying it. I am interested to find out all the details of her horrible childhood that I expect will eventually be revealed.

38AlisonY
Out 6, 2019, 4:00pm

Finished the amazing A Thousand Acres. How did I go past that on my TBR for so long?

I'm now reading one of the debuts that I picked up at the Cheltenham Literature Festival - Jog On - How I Got My Life Back on Track by Bella Mackie, which is a memoir about the author finding her way out of depression and anxiety through running.

39ELiz_M
Editado: Out 6, 2019, 10:48pm

>38 AlisonY: I'm happy you enjoyed it! I have a soft spot for JS (not that I've read a great many of her novels) and more so for Shakespeare retellings. :)

40thorold
Editado: Out 7, 2019, 5:06am

After Aiding and abetting I only have one more Spark novel to go, Memento mori. I’m saving that for a little bit...

I’ve started Antonia Muñoz Molina’s El viento de la Luna - because I want to read at least something Apollo XI-related this year. And in between I’ve been reading Kafka’s first (very-) short story collection, Betrachtung.

(Touchstones are being a pain again today...)

41dchaikin
Out 7, 2019, 9:33am

On audio I finished Quichotte, an oddball book that’s was really fun once I got into it. And I’ve started The Testaments.

42rhian_of_oz
Out 7, 2019, 9:40am

I started two new books today - Kill City Blues which is going to my lunchtime-when-working-at-home book, and Dark Emu which I will try and read a bit of every day.

43benitastrnad
Out 7, 2019, 4:16pm

>37 Nickelini:
I liked Eleanor Oliphant. I was surprised that I did because I generally don't like "Women's Fiction" but this one refused to sit quietly in that mold. I hope you enjoy it too.

44baswood
Out 7, 2019, 5:02pm

I am reading As Trains pass by Katinka by Herman Bang

45avaland
Out 7, 2019, 5:33pm

Still reading the Jeanette Winterson, but took some time out to read Helon Habila's small nonfiction book, The Chibok Girls: The Boko Haram Kidnappings and Islamist Militancy in Nigeria in preparation for Edna O'Brien's forthcoming related novel.

46AlisonY
Out 8, 2019, 4:31pm

I've jogged through Jog On: How Running Saved My Life, and next up (courtesy of my 10 year old book picker daughter) is Michael Crummey's River Thieves.

47BLBera
Out 9, 2019, 9:45am

48LadyoftheLodge
Out 9, 2019, 10:50am

I am currently trying to get caught up with my NetGalley reads, ha ha! These have been Christmas books lately. I also went to a huge used book sale to benefit the Hoosier Hills Food Bank, and of course my husband and I both came home with bags full of books, which we really needed, right?! But the proceeds go to a good cause, and I will donate the books back for next year's sale.

I just finished several for NetGalley:
We are the Gardeners--family oriented book on gardening
A Gingerbread Romance--fun Christmas read until the epilogue just ruined the ending
Death of a Gigolo--very humorous mystery in a fun series

And these for the TBR challenge:
The Blue Faience Hippopotamus by Joan Grant
An Amish Christmas by Richard Ammon

49baswood
Editado: Out 11, 2019, 10:54am

I am reading Will in the World: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare by Stephen Greenblatt before I launch into the collected works

50rocketjk
Editado: Out 11, 2019, 1:19pm

Today I'll begin a book called Saturday Matinee. My wife bought this book directly from the author at a book fair during her recent drive cross-country. The book's subtitle is "Scenes from Oklahoma During the Great Depression." Though described as "Fiction" on its back cover, my wife told me that, according to the author, it's more of a fictionalized memoir. The author's dedication begins, "This volume of fiction is based upon the author's memories and fantasies about growing up in rural Oklahoma during the Great Depression, the World War II era, and beyond." So the subject matter is certainly interesting! Here's hoping the writing is good. The book was originally published in 2011, but as of today I am the only LT member listing it.

51lilisin
Out 15, 2019, 1:29am

Finished reading the thrilling nonfiction book by Donnie Eichar, Dead Mountain: The Untold True Story of the Dyatlov Pass Incident. It was a fantastic page-turner and with this, other than the Atwood dystopian trilogy I'm saving for later, I've finished off all the books from my Christmas TBR pile. What a fast turnaround from buying to reading books. Very exciting.

52rachbxl
Out 15, 2019, 10:27am

I'm stuck in La tresse by Laetitia Colombani; I'm not really enjoying it but it seems silly to give up when it's such a slim (insubstantial!) book. On the other hand, I've just started The Testaments, which I'm looking forward to getting my teeth into. And on my Kindle (on the train) I'm reading Fifty Shades of Feminism, ed. Lisa Appignanesi, Rachel Holmes and Susie Orbach, a thought-provoking but also entertaining response to Fifty Shades of Grey.

53thorold
Out 15, 2019, 11:06am

El viento de la Luna was excellent, and kept me busy for a few days. I've filled in since then with Alan Taylor's memoir of his friendship with Muriel Spark, Appointment in Arezzo, a lovely short French non-fiction novel, Vie de ma voisine, and Peter Carey's The chemistry of tears, before I finished my Spark read-through (as far as the novels go) with Memento mori.

54dchaikin
Out 15, 2019, 1:15pm

Finished Dante : A Life in Works and Dante for Beginners, the later being like a schmoop summary. And I’ve started No Name in the Street, a 1972 essay collection by James Baldwin. The opening essay has Baldwin reflecting on the MLK assassination.

55RidgewayGirl
Out 15, 2019, 1:33pm

I'm reading Fishnet by Helen Innes, a wonderfully dark Scottish noir about a woman whose sister disappeared and her attempts to find her. I'm also reading Lightning Men, part of Thomas Mullen's crime series set mid nineteenth century Atlanta.

Aside from crime, I'm reading the charming Biloxi by Mary Miller, about a divorced older man who adopts a dog. And I'm dipping into the short stories in Black Light by Kimberly King Parsons.

56AlisonY
Out 16, 2019, 12:18pm

I've picked up one of the one-to-watch debuts that were selected by The Times at the Cheltenham Literary Festival - Cygnet by Season Butler. Not sure what I'm expecting from this one...

57rocketjk
Out 16, 2019, 1:31pm

I've now started White by Deni Ellis Béchard. Given that Béchard's novels and journalism all seems to have won or at least been nominated for a variety of writing awards, I was surprised to find that only one LT member besides me has this book listed.

58thorold
Out 16, 2019, 2:16pm

I’ve enjoyed another look at Gerald Murnane with A history of books — which of us could resist that title? Now dipping a toe into Hungarian lit with Sándor Márai’s Portraits of a marriage. Picked mainly because I saw George Szirtes did the translation.

59lilisin
Out 17, 2019, 3:20am

Will be finishing Yu Miri's Tokyo Ueno Station today which means I'll have yet another book to review even though I'm still not catch up on reviewing the books I read last month.

60BLBera
Out 17, 2019, 11:25am

I'm reading In the Woods, finally getting to Tana French after seeing so many favorable comments.

61LadyoftheLodge
Out 18, 2019, 7:17pm

Still reading books for NetGalley, to reduce my pile of books to review. I am reading Christmas Every Day by Beth Moran which is a contemporary Brit novel. The Brit sense of humor cracks me up, and this one is no exception. I almost gave up after a slow start, with minute details of the heroine moving into a dilapidated cottage, but it is worth persevering. I cannot find the Touchstone for this one yet.

62baswood
Out 19, 2019, 5:27pm

I am reading The Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare

63dchaikin
Out 19, 2019, 5:48pm

>62 baswood: is this the beginning of a Bard run? I have a little catch to do on your thread, I'll certainly want to follow you on these plays.

64dchaikin
Out 19, 2019, 5:50pm

Currently reading Flowers of Mold, a short story collection by Korean author Seong-nan Ha. And I'll have a try at Dante's Vita Nuova soonish.

65baswood
Out 20, 2019, 3:36am

>63 dchaikin: Yes Dan. It is difficult to sort out which of the plays is the earliest. Academics have made their careers on writing about this subject. but The Shrew was one of the earliest.

66japaul22
Out 20, 2019, 8:28am

I've finished the short I'm Not Scared by Niccolo Ammaniti which I was hoping would be October-appropriate. It was ok.

Now I'm reading Siri Hustvedt's new novel Memories of the Future and finishing City of Light, City of Poison, a nonficiton book about poisonings among the upper classes of Paris during Louis XIV's reign.

67BLBera
Out 20, 2019, 10:03am

I just finished the quite wonderful Red at the Bone, short but powerful.

68rhian_of_oz
Out 20, 2019, 10:28am

I enjoyed a rare day of reading so I finished Exit Strategy (the last of the Murderbot novellas) and Dark Matter (BB from shadrach_anki).

69lisapeet
Out 20, 2019, 10:52am

Done with all my LJ Best Books judging, so I'm going back and finishing some of the ones I liked and also reveling in the fact that I can read what I want (not that I didn't enjoy that long list—it was by and large excellent).

Right now I'm finishing up Xuan Juliana Wang's Home Remedies because it's a library ebook about to expire (and it's very good—tales of contemporary Chinese folks both here and there, and her voice is fresh and not standard fare) and continuing, slowly, Ninth Street Women. The book club I'm reading it for met yesterday and, surprise, none of us had finished. But it's a good account of the times, both cultural and political, and we all really liked it and intend to keep going.

70thorold
Out 20, 2019, 12:10pm

I’m continuing the Zolathon with Au bonheur des dames. Since I’m actually in Spain at the moment I should try to read something more locally relevant, really...

71AlisonY
Out 20, 2019, 12:23pm

I unexpectedly enjoyed the debut Cygnet: A Novel. On now to Postcards From a Stranger by Imogen Clark. I'm feeling sorry for myself with a bit of a sniffle, and I hope this will be some enjoyable comfort reading.

72benitastrnad
Out 20, 2019, 3:08pm

I am very much enjoying the story of two families of Christians in Shanghai. The book starts out in the 1890's and ends in the 1980's. Shanghai Faithful by Jennifer Lin is a great story. I had to get it from our Inter-Library Loan department and it has been worth the hassle it took to get it.

73rhian_of_oz
Out 22, 2019, 11:33am

I started The Outside for bookclub. I went to the library to return a book and discovered The Case of the Wandering Scholar which was awesome because I didn't even know a second Laetitia Rodd book existed.

74ELiz_M
Out 22, 2019, 1:38pm

Finished the delightful Orlando and started I Thought of Daisy which I had to set aside for to read The Other.

75AlisonY
Out 24, 2019, 8:31am

76lilisin
Out 24, 2019, 9:37am

Finally catching up on some reviews on my thread and also finished reading Territory of Light by Yuko Tsushima that I enjoyed, but will also now have to review.

77dchaikin
Out 24, 2019, 1:45pm

>75 AlisonY: pulling for you, although it does sound like a test you want to not pass.

78avaland
Out 24, 2019, 5:48pm

I'm reading yet another dystopia, Leila by Praying Akbar, which is very good so far. People living like-minded people within walled communities (reminded me immediately of Octavia Butler's Parable of the Sower where it was 'gated' communities. It's been made into a Netflix film or series, but I wanted to read the book first.

79benitastrnad
Editado: Out 24, 2019, 8:58pm

>76 lilisin:
I just checked out Territory of Light. Was it worth reading? I havent’t started it yet.

80RidgewayGirl
Editado: Out 24, 2019, 9:37pm

I've just started The Bus on Thursday by Shirley Barrett, an odd combination of sarcastic woman deals with breast cancer and horror. I'm also reading the less-odd-than-I-thought-it-would-be Mostly Dead Things by Kristen Arnett and a new suspense novel by Joyce Carol Oates called Pursuit. It feels very old-fashioned and also very JCO.

And, to my embarrassment, I'm also reading Biloxi by Mary Miller, about a 63 year old divorced man who adopts a dog, as well as a steampunk novel set in a New Orleans called The Black God's Drums by P. Djeli Clark, and a collection of short stories by Kimberly King Parsons called Black Light.

81lilisin
Out 25, 2019, 6:39am

>79 benitastrnad:

I would say yes. The writing is beautiful and the struggles of the characters feel real to the touch.

82lisapeet
Out 25, 2019, 10:09am

>80 RidgewayGirl: I read a bit into Black Light and liked it, but it's on my list to finish before I have more of an opinion. I also have Biloxi on my virtual shelf.

83BLBera
Out 26, 2019, 8:47am

I'll watch for your comments on The Bus on Thursday; it turned into something very different from what I was expecting. I did have a conversation with someone on LT about it, but would certainly like to hear more opinions.

84AlisonY
Out 27, 2019, 12:30pm

I finished The Psychopath Test: A Journey Through the Madness Industry which interested me and wound me up in equal measure.

I'm now on to Preston Falls by David Gates. I thought I'd added this to my wish list from a CR review some time back, but I can't see any reviews on LT from any CRers. Oh well - I obviously got a BB from somewhere for it.

85lilisin
Out 28, 2019, 3:58am

Halfway through Spring Garden by Tomoka Shibasaki which should get finished before the end of the month as it's so short.

86dchaikin
Out 28, 2019, 4:58am

Haven't finished anything, but started King Lear and a free kindle book I got back in April, one of the amazon translated free books - The Murmur of Bees by Mexican author Sofía Segovia

87baswood
Out 28, 2019, 11:43am

I am about to read the first three books of The Fairie Queen by Edmund Spenser. It is a re-read for me.

88benitastrnad
Editado: Out 29, 2019, 1:33pm

I started reading Unlikely Disciple: A Sinner's Semester at America's Holiest University by Kevin Roose for the Non-Fiction LT Challenge and am finding it to be interesting. I thought it would take me into a different world - and it has. I should finish Territory of Light today, and I am finding it to be a strange novel - in the way that Murakami novels are strange.

89thorold
Out 31, 2019, 2:55am

During my short Spanish holiday I was too busy to get a huge amount of reading done, but I finished Au Bonheur des dames and Nueva teoría de la urbanidad, a little freebie from the Spanish FNAC (reviews coming soon), and I got about halfway through Antonio Muñoz Molina’s first novel Beatus Ille.

90BLBera
Nov 1, 2019, 8:56am

I am starting the short story collection, Corina & Sabrina.

91lisapeet
Nov 1, 2019, 9:04am

>90 BLBera: I just finished that and really liked it. Interested to hear what other folks think—even though it's a National Book Award finalist I haven't heard from very many folks who've read it.

92bragan
Nov 1, 2019, 3:51pm

Been quite a while since I've checked in here! In the meantime, I've read:

Looking for Group by Rory Harrison
An Illustrated Book of Bad Arguments by Ali Almossawi
Mistress of the Art of Death by Ariana Franklin
Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik
It's Even Worse Than You Think: What the Trump Administration Is Doing to America by David Cay Johnston
The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes
A Wodehouse Bestiary by P.G. Wodehouse

I'm now currently reading The Witch of Lime Street: Séance, Seduction, and Houdini in the Spirit World by David Jaher. Which I'm finding just a little disappointing. The subject matter is interesting, but the writing isn't engaging me the way I'd hoped.

93AlisonY
Nov 1, 2019, 4:45pm

Well, Preston Falls turned out to be a real hit (for me). One of my favourites this year no doubt.

Next I'm going to read The Millstone by Margaret Drabble, as I've been ignoring it on my TBR for too long.

94BLBera
Nov 1, 2019, 9:15pm

>91 lisapeet: The first three stories are all wonderful.

95avaland
Editado: Nov 2, 2019, 7:16am

Currently reading, Woman of the Ashes by Mozambique Mia Couto. It's meant to be a "The first in a trilogy about the last emperor of southern Mozambique." I've always enjoyed Couto work in the past so ....

I've very behind in writing reviews. Distractions....

96rocketjk
Nov 2, 2019, 4:05pm

I'm almost through with the brilliant, disturbing and heartbeaking--but essential--Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates. But I haven't been reading much over the past 10 days. On my personal thread here on Club Read I've written a account of the past week and a half (https://www.librarything.com/topic/309495#6957873). I'm fine and so is my wife, but we've had a very sad time and had to put our dog to sleep. Best to all.

97dchaikin
Nov 2, 2019, 6:22pm

>97 dchaikin: sorry about your pup, Jerry. Never easy.

I finally finished a book, Vita Nuova, Dante's first book. I read an edition with an excellent essay by the translator, Mark Musa. So, that gives me an excuse to start two more books - If Beale Street Could Talk, a novel by James Baldwin (and a recent movie). And shortly I'll begin A Lost Lady, a 1923 novel by Willa Cather. So, that will be five ongoing...

98AlisonY
Editado: Nov 3, 2019, 1:20pm

Well, The Millstone turned out to be fun. I'm going to start on Hardy's The Return of the Native next. I've not been near any 'old' classics this year so far, so thought it time I picked up one of my favourite authors. Not sure if I've already peaked on the Hardy front in terms of reading his best - I'm interested in how this one pans out.

99baswood
Nov 3, 2019, 1:20pm

I am reading Force of Circumstance It is part 3 of Simone de Beauvoir's autobiography. She has quite a lot to say.

100LadyoftheLodge
Nov 3, 2019, 3:33pm

>96 rocketjk: I am so sorry. Losing a pet is very difficult, at least it has been for me.

I am currently reading New Beginnings at Promise Lodge by Charlotte Hubbard for NetGalley. This is a very different kind of Amish novel, and I like it a lot. The people in it seem willing to push the boundaries of Old Order and what it means to be an Amish woman or a widow. The situations seem realistic to me, as they are not relegated to problems among the Amish, but reflect problems that anyone could have. It is part of a series, but the first I have read in the series.

101MarcusBastos
Nov 3, 2019, 7:09pm

Finished reading Shooting Stars, by Lebron James. Review in my thread.

102thorold
Nov 4, 2019, 3:39pm

Finished Beatus Ille (excellent!), and have got side-tracked by another — slightly tongue-in-cheek — Flemish philosophy-of-cycling book from the library, Hoe word je een wielerfan (en blijf je er een)? by Matthias Vangenechten

103dchaikin
Nov 4, 2019, 8:13pm

I've started another book (that's seven ongoing): Dante : A Life by R. W. B. Lewis. I adored his book on Florence which I read years ago, so picked this up a the library.

104bragan
Nov 5, 2019, 7:38pm

I am now reading Wizard and Glass by Stephen King, the fourth book in the Dark Tower series. And I would like to request that someone send an expedition out to rescue me from the Land of Endless Flashback that I seem to have wandered into. Thank you.

105MsNick
Nov 6, 2019, 9:27am

After I saw an ad for the series, I had to pick up my copy of Mrs. Fletcher by Tom Perrotta.

106rhian_of_oz
Nov 6, 2019, 10:34am

I read The Spotted Dog last weekend because I wanted to read something fun (which it was). I've started Working Class Boy because I want to read Working Class Man for November TBRCat and I couldn't possibly read the latter without first reading the former. I also started The Colour of Bee Larkham's Murder thinking it would be another light read (it isn't).

107dchaikin
Nov 6, 2019, 11:26pm

Flipping audiobooks. Finished The Testaments, which I didn't really like, and started Lost Children Archive, which I'm into so far and enjoying the language.

108rachbxl
Nov 7, 2019, 3:06pm

>107 dchaikin: Whereas as you know, I loved The Testaments, but I’m not getting on very well with The Lost Children Archive, which I started a couple of weeks ago and keep putting aside and then trying again.

As well as The Lost Children Archive, I’m reading The Core of the Sun, a dystopian novel by Finnish writer Johanna Sinisalo, and Distancia de rescate (Fever Dream) by Samanta Schweblin (Argentina). Enjoying them both.

109RidgewayGirl
Editado: Nov 8, 2019, 10:02am

>107 dchaikin: I can't wait to find out what you make of Lost Children Archive. That's a book that I started reading with a library copy, but quickly realized I was going to have to take my time with it. My copy sits on the shelf liberally festooned with post-its marking passages I found noteworthy.

I'm reading Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead by Olga Tokarczuk, which I'm finding to be fascinating. I'm enjoying Miracle Creek by Angie Kim well enough. And I'm reading a Chick-Lit romance set in Toronto's Muslim community called Ayesha at Last by Uzma Jalaluddin. It's interesting to see the usual tropes and patterns superimposed onto a culture I know very little about.

>108 rachbxl: I very much wonder why the English-language version was not called "Rescue Distance," when that so much more reflects Schweblin's novel than Fever Dream.

110lilisin
Nov 7, 2019, 6:39pm

Finished reading The Memory Police last night which I really enjoyed but there has a bit to be said about the direction it took. It was quite interesting.

111rachbxl
Nov 8, 2019, 4:58am

>109 RidgewayGirl: Yes, I was looking for the Schweblin novel that you read, but all I could find was Distancia de rescate, which I assumed was a different novel altogether. It was only when I started reading it that I realised it was the same!

112dchaikin
Editado: Nov 8, 2019, 9:29am

>108 rachbxl: very entertained by our alternate responses.

>109 RidgewayGirl: I’m completely taken by LCA so far. It helps that the reader has this hard to place elegant latino accent, but it’s just so intimate and beautifully expressed. She’s a terrific writer. (is it the author also the reader? Not sure. The book lists a cast, author coming first, but two hours in there are only two voices. One main voice for all narration and one other voice used to describe the contents of the boxes)

113RidgewayGirl
Nov 8, 2019, 10:03am

>112 dchaikin: Daniel, I believe the narrator will change for the novel's second half.

114LadyoftheLodge
Nov 8, 2019, 10:23am

I am currently reading Christmas in Vermont for NetGalley, very cute and fluffy and predictable, but lots of typos which I hope get fixed.

Also reading A Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck for Category Challenge AlphaKit for November.

115BLBera
Nov 8, 2019, 3:23pm

I finished the excellent story collection Sabrina & Corina - I hope to read more by this writer in the future.

I just started Frankissstein and am really enjoying it.

116avaland
Nov 8, 2019, 4:13pm

>109 RidgewayGirl: I loved the Tokarczuk!! Read it back on vacation in September before she was awarded the Nobel, but just haven't been able to review it (or anything lately...I keep putting it off). It was so good.

>115 BLBera: The Wintersson, another book I haven't reviewed yet. I really enjoyed most of it, but found I was tiring of it as I was nearing the end,

117avaland
Nov 8, 2019, 4:17pm

I'm not reading anything in the normal sort of manner; however, I am reading lots of odds and ends of old bits of colonial New England history.

118BLBera
Nov 8, 2019, 6:44pm

>116 avaland: I'm about 100 pages in, and there is SO MUCH to think about! She has a great sense of humor as well. I am cracking up with the sexbots.

119thorold
Editado: Nov 9, 2019, 6:12am

I've finished another "just because I don't need to" technical book, featuring plenty of scary-looking partial differential equations: A history of aerodynamics and its impact on flying machines. And I'm very happy that there isn't going to be an exam.

In the meantime I've started the next one in my Zolathon, La joie de vivre (a nice beach-novel for November) and Thomas Bernhard's Alte Meister for the Mitteleuropa theme read.

>115 BLBera: >116 avaland: I must get to that, I haven't read any new Winterson book since Why be happy.

120LadyoftheLodge
Nov 9, 2019, 11:31am

I am reading A Christmas Gathering by Anne Perry for NetGalley.

121benitastrnad
Nov 11, 2019, 12:37pm

I finished Why Should the Devil Have All the Good Music? Larry Norman and the Perils of Christian Rock by Gregory Alan Thornbury.

Larry Norman was a rising rock star who looked and acted the part - at first. He was a virtuoso guitar player and poet. He counted among his friends Bono and Cliff Richard. His work was admired by Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. (All of these were his contemporaries as well as musical voyagers of the same era.) He grew up a Christian and his early work, while secular, was heavily influenced by his faith. However, he was determined to make it as a Rock Star. He had the rugged good looks needed for the part, and a striking mane of long white blond hair - naturally that color. He looked like the quintessential California surfer boy rock star. However, a conversion experience led him to a life as the founder of a new kind of music - Christian rock. The title for the book comes from one of his Christian rock anthems for which he became famous. He was also the person who trademarked the "One Way" sign of the single finger pointing upwards that became associated with the Jesus movement.

In Norman's early days it was very hard to get a contract to record and produce Christian rock and the established Christian recording companies didn't know what to do with Christian rock. For that reason Norman started his own recording company. He also started his own booking agency and became not only the first star of the Christian rock scene, but also one of its founding executives. This sounds like a success story. It wasn't. Norman had a difficult personality and two difficult marriages that devolved into scandal. There were sex scandals, drug scandals, and business scandals that followed him throughout his career. He spent large chunks of his life in Britain and found a following in Europe, particularly in Britain and the Scandinavian countries and he felt like it was a case of a prophet in his own country syndrome. He died in the early 2000's from congestive heart failure in his early 60's. Bono and Paul McCartney sent flowers to his funeral.

The book covered and area of the music industry that tends to not be taken seriously even though sales are now through the roof and CCM is a big, and still growing, part of the music industry. That meant that the subject was of interest. However, there were times, when the writing just wasn't that scintillating. The author is a reporter who covers the CCM part of music, and he admitted in the first pages of the book that he was a Larry Norman fan. Even so, there were parts of the book that were mundane when the life of Larry Norman was very exciting and cutting edge. In short, this book could have been more, but it was still a good 250 page introduction with endnotes and references.

122AlisonY
Nov 11, 2019, 4:11pm

Finished yet another wonderful Hardy novel (Return of the Native. Staying in ye olde England I'm heading to Dickens' Hard Times.

123thorold
Nov 11, 2019, 4:38pm

Finished Alte Meister (wonderful!) and have started on Olga Tokarczuk's Flights. Zola's still rumbling on in the background.

>122 AlisonY: The furze be with you!

124AlisonY
Nov 11, 2019, 4:40pm

>123 thorold: I'm still picking bits of furze off me after Return of the Native!

125baswood
Nov 11, 2019, 6:02pm

>121 benitastrnad: Enjoyed your excellent review of Why should the Devil have all the Good music
Larry Norman is a name I have come across, but I don't believe I have ever heard any of his music - fascinating

126baswood
Nov 11, 2019, 6:04pm

I am about to start matter by Iain M. Banks

127BLBera
Nov 11, 2019, 8:42pm

Frankissstein is an amazing novel that I will think about for a long time. The novel challenges ideas of gender and identity, but the central question it asks is what it means to be human -- and Winterson does all of this while telling a fascinating story filled with memorable characters.

There is Mary Shelley, imagined during her life with Shelley, beginning with the summer she wrote Frankenstein. There is Ry Shelley, a present-day surgeon, who happens to be transgender. There is Victor Stein, a man who wants to download his brain and so achieve immortality. There is Ron Lord, the creator of a sexbot empire, who happens to also be hilarious.

While I am, for now, giving this novel five stars, I recognize that this novel is not for everyone, no linear plot, for one thing. I loved it.

128dchaikin
Nov 11, 2019, 9:25pm

>127 BLBera: i’ll get there as I work through the Booker list (I’m going from longest to shortest on audio. Only Ducks, Newburyport - at over 1,000 pages - isn’t available on audio)

129BLBera
Nov 11, 2019, 10:57pm

>128 dchaikin: Hmm - It will be interesting to see what you think. I'm not sure it would work for me on audio.

130lisapeet
Nov 13, 2019, 7:13am

Wow, I haven't posted here in a while. I finished Home Remedies and liked it a lot—interesting stories about Chinese expats or native Millennials that always surprised in one way or another. I went on to finish a few other Best Books candidates: Benjamin Percy's Suicide Woods, which was good smart horror, more cerebral than visceral but that's fine; Kali Fajardo-Anstine's Sabrina & Corina, which I just loved; Etgar Keret's Fly Already, which I also liked a bunch; and then a new book, Lily Tuck's Heathcliff Redux, which I thought was an interesting exercise but really kind of missed the mark.

Now I'm reading The Testaments because my library hold came in. And while I'm enjoying it, I'm totally distracted by the question of why Atwood named a character Paula Saunders, who is an author and the wife of George Saunders. It can't be coincidence—I briefly Googled and see that Atwood and George Saunders were both lecture speakers at Syracuse University in 2018, and they seem to have a high regard for each other. I'm assuming that if Atwood is going to use someone's name in such a prominent novel it's in fun, not as a dig, but I have to say it did throw me out of the action a bit. It's still very entertaining, though I'm going to need to reread A Handmaid's Tale after.

131thorold
Nov 14, 2019, 11:44am

Enjoyed Flights. Also enjoyed Susan Sontag’s Collected Stories.

Less convinced by the attempt to get me to read some graphic novels with Blankets — I really wasn’t in the market for an all-American teen love story. But I can sort-of see the point.

Have started dipping a toe into Arturo Pérez-Reverte’s ever-so-slightly flippant Una historia de España. Not quite the Spanish 1066, but along similar lines.

132lilisin
Editado: Nov 15, 2019, 12:37am

Finished another one for November, Heartbreaker by Claudia Dey. It took me a little longer than I expected to read as it's such a short book but it's not exactly the type of book I enjoy reading. But I can't say it wasn't good. Probably an excellent read for fans of the genre.

133lisapeet
Nov 15, 2019, 6:33am

>132 lilisin: I loved that one, but it's definitely not something everybody's going to like. What would you say the genre is? It was definitely weird, including the overall narrative voice, but for whatever reason it really worked for me.

134lilisin
Nov 15, 2019, 7:09am

>132 lilisin:

It's interesting that you ask me that question as I had hesitated using the word genre as I wasn't sure what genre the book would fit in. I thought the narrative voice and beginning tried too hard at the beginning to shock you into the story but as the tone of the book calmed down it became more readable but I still don't know if I enjoyed my read of this.

135BLBera
Nov 15, 2019, 8:55am

I am reading The Starless Sea, not my usual fare, but enjoyable so far.

136rhian_of_oz
Editado: Nov 15, 2019, 9:22am

I started Perihelion Summer which is a BB from dukedom_enough.

137MarcusBastos
Nov 16, 2019, 7:27am

Finished The Firm, by John Grisham. I’m reading (slowly) Grisham thrillers in chronological order. Review in my thread.

138rhian_of_oz
Nov 16, 2019, 9:37am

Fun day of book browsing and shopping. Resisted the urge to read one of my new purchases and picked Bridge of Clay from Mt TBR.

139rhian_of_oz
Nov 17, 2019, 9:36am

Enjoyed a quiet Sunday at home by reading - Working Class Man for November TBRCat and Just One Damned Thing After Another one of my new purchases and an indirect BB from wandering_star.

140japaul22
Nov 17, 2019, 12:02pm

I'm pushing through the last two volumes of Dorothy Richardson's Pilgrimage. It's been my year long project and I'd really like to finish it before the end of the year.

I'm also reading Butcher's Crossing by John Williams. It's wonderful. He really must be one of the most underrated American authors.

141LadyoftheLodge
Nov 17, 2019, 12:42pm

I just finished Christmas Shopaholic which is a totally fun and fluffy read for the holidays.

142avaland
Nov 18, 2019, 5:47am

Gosh, I last posted 10 days ago! What am I reading? Not really anything, sadly. The news via my phone, email. Just too much activity here to read as we have construction going on daily and other activity that is not conducive to reading.

>127 BLBera: Glad you enjoyed it so much. It's possible there were distractions that affected my reading as I got towards the end. And you are right, it's not really a linear sort of story.

143markon
Editado: Nov 18, 2019, 11:22am

>127 BLBera: & >135 BLBera: I am eagerly awaiting a copy of The Starless Sea at the library (though I'm afraid it will not live up to her first novel, The night circus) and have Frankissstein on my wait list. I've enjoyed the books I've read by Winterson before - Oranges are not the only fruit and Christmas Days.

Meanwhile, I've recently finished my first read of A tree grows in Brooklyn (audio) by Betty Smith (lovely) and The Deep by Rivers Solomon (science fiction novella) and the latest Deborah Crombie, A Bitter Feast.

edited to fix typos

Last but not least, Helon Habila's Travelers required mulling over to sort out parts of the narrative, but is a compelling novel centered on the experiences of African immigrants to Western Europe. Review here

144RidgewayGirl
Nov 18, 2019, 11:10am

>142 avaland: There's construction going on at the house next door, but the dog loves going out to watch the crew working so much that I hope that their new deck takes a long time to build.

I've just finished Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead by Olga Tokarczuk, which was wonderful in so many ways, and A Good Neighborhood by Therese Anne Fowler, which was certainly event-filled, but also filled with stereotypes, all of whom never did anything other than what was expected of them.

I'm currently reading a crime thriller by Sophie Hannah called Perfect Little Children and The Dutch House by Anne Pratchett.

145thorold
Nov 19, 2019, 3:17pm

Pérez-Reverte's Una historia de España was fun, although I did have to do quite a bit of looking up of "colourful" idiomatic expressions. I followed that up with the rather more sedate and gloomy La Petite Bijou by Modiano.

I'm carrying on my dip into the brain-challenging world of Susan Sontag with Against interpretation, which promises to teach me a lot I didn't know I didn't know about 1960s European literature and cinema (amongst other things). But I may well need to take a few rests along the way — I've got a couple of Hungarian novels on the pile for the Mitteleuropa theme as well.

146AlisonY
Nov 20, 2019, 6:29am

I'm going to stick with the classics for the rest of this month whilst I seem to be in that kind of reading frame of mind. I finished Dickens' Hard Times last night, and will start on Byron's The Road to Oxiana this evening when I get a minute.

147dchaikin
Nov 20, 2019, 6:55am

Yesterday I finished Lost Children Archive, which was somehow perfect for me on audio. I’ll miss it. I’ve started Girl, Woman, Other.

Also yesterday I finished Dante’s Rimes, and now I’m focusing my on finishing King Lear. Also, I’ll soon finish Willa Cather’s A Lost Lady.

148lisapeet
Nov 20, 2019, 7:29am

Reading The Handmaid's Tale, which I'm glad I dove into right after The Testaments. I have some thoughts, but I'll wait until I'm finished.

149rhian_of_oz
Nov 20, 2019, 10:01am

I'm feeling a bit guilty because I am so far behind in my reviews. But it does mean I'm reading more - my new work commute book is The Botanist's Daughter.

150LadyoftheLodge
Nov 20, 2019, 3:07pm

I finished Christmas Shopaholic and A Wedding in December for NetGalley. I am now reading Diamond in the Rough for NetGalley. It started out really slowly but is picking up now to be a rollicking good historical fiction read about a young lady who turns New York high society on its head.

I am getting way too involved with 2020 Challenges and making my reading lists. My husband is probably wondering what is going on and getting tired of my chatting on about my book groups.

151dchaikin
Editado: Nov 22, 2019, 1:06pm

I finished King Lear last night and A Lost Lady this morning, and suddenly I have five books to review. Next should be The Devil Finds Work, an essay collection by James Baldwin.

152thorold
Editado: Nov 22, 2019, 12:31pm

I finished Against interpretation (demanding, but fun to immerse yourself in sixties high-culture) and No.12 in the Zolathon, La joie de vivre (misleading title of the week prize, I think, but it probably is more cheerful than the next one...).

I watched The winter's tale in the BBC Shakespeare last night to get ready for Jeanette Winterson's The gap of time, which should be next, and I've also got Antal Szerb's Journey by moonlight lined up and ready to go.

153baswood
Nov 22, 2019, 5:32pm

>152 thorold: I really enjoyed Journey by Moonlight but be careful the book might make you want to jump into a car and head for those Italian town lovingly described.

154rhian_of_oz
Nov 23, 2019, 8:05pm

Started and finished Still Life which is a BB from VivienneR.

155markon
Editado: Nov 24, 2019, 12:50pm

The only book I finished this week was From here to eternity by Caitlin Doughty, a book about how several cultures deal with their dead. It was interesting, but not exceptional.

I am currently listening to an audio of The starless sea by Erin Morgenstern and reading Cantoras by Carolina de Robertis.

Edited to correct typos and add link to the book.

156japaul22
Nov 24, 2019, 3:43pm

I'm reading The Mayor of Casterbridge (thanks, Alison!).

157bragan
Editado: Nov 25, 2019, 10:57am

Once again, it's been ages since I checked in here. Since then, I've read:

The Manual of Detection by Jedediah Berry
You Say Potato by Ben Crystal & David Crystal
Black Hearts in Battersea by Joan Aiken
Mythos by Stephen Fry
The Devil's Cup by Stewart Lee Allen
and The Word for World is Forest by Ursula K. LeGuin

Currently I'm reading The Island by Olivia Levez. But I've only just started it, and I have no idea what to make of it so far.

158LadyoftheLodge
Nov 25, 2019, 11:40am

I just finished Once Upon a Dickens Christmas for NetGalley, which is a set of three Victorian novellas. Each one evokes they style, time, and themes of Dickens.

159baswood
Nov 25, 2019, 1:27pm

I am reading The poetry of the Faerie Queene by Paul J Alpers and Allegorical Imagery by Rosemond Tove to try and get the best out of my re-read of Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene

160rhian_of_oz
Nov 26, 2019, 9:53am

I started Parable of the Sower this morning and so far so good.

161LadyoftheLodge
Nov 26, 2019, 2:08pm

I just finished Ellen Tebbits by Beverly Cleary and Missing May by Cynthia Rylant.

162lilisin
Nov 26, 2019, 7:00pm

Finished reading Ghosts of the Tsunami, a depiction of the events of the March 11th tsunami in Japan, focusing on one school that lost the majority (74 out of 78) of the schoolchildren in attendance that day. An engaging read that is no more, no less than what you would expect to get from reading about an event like this.

163thorold
Nov 27, 2019, 5:57am

Finished Journey by moonlight, which I really enjoyed as well, and as >153 baswood: said, makes you want to get on the (right) train to explore whatever bits of Umbria are still off the beaten track.

Started Dawkins's Climbing mount improbable.

164BLBera
Nov 27, 2019, 10:18am

I just started Akin, and it has grabbed me right away.

165rocketjk
Nov 27, 2019, 2:15pm

Greetings all!

I'm just back from a glorious three-week vacation with my wife in Argentina and southern Chile. I didn't do a whole lot of reading during the trip, as our days were so active that my usual reading time just before bedtime turned most often into picking up my book to read and then falling immediately asleep. I did do a little reading, though, and I will be gradually catching up over the next couple of days over on my personal group thread. To begin with, today I'm adding my review of the astounding Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates. I actually finished the book before we left, but that particular week and a half time period was so fraught (description thereof can also be found on my personal thread) that I had no time for LT writing. Anyway, as I said, the trip was glorious and we are well.

166thorold
Nov 28, 2019, 2:27pm

...and started The fire starters, which looks as though it ought to be fun (like Milkman, but different...).

>165 rocketjk: I trust you’ve brought back lots of lovely books by Latin American writers we don’t know about yet!

167rocketjk
Editado: Nov 28, 2019, 2:53pm

>166 thorold: Sadly, no, I can't make that claim. I don't read Spanish, unfortunately, and the only bookstore I was able to visit in Buenos Aires (or anywhere in our travels) that specializes in English language books didn't have a Latin American Authors section, at least that I noticed. I did buy an English translations of Fever Dream by Samanta Schweblin, but I think she's far from unknown at this point. The coolest book I bought, though, I found in the Sunday antiques market in the San Telmo neighborhood of Buenos Aires, a bibliography of books published in Argentina in 1879 and published in 1880: Anuario Bibliográfico de la República Arjentina 1879. I did notice one author who is sort of the poet laureate of a small fishing/port town on the island of Chiloe in Chile who I am going to try to find in translation (though I have my doubts). Frustratingly, I can neither remember nor lay my hands on his name at the moment, but I will report back when I do.

168thorold
Editado: Nov 28, 2019, 3:07pm

>167 rocketjk: Oh well, never mind — that’s often how it works out for me when I go somewhere new. Researching the literature of where you’ve just been is fun too, and sometimes helps prolong the holiday feeling.

1879 would have been about the time the great Argentinian epic Martín Fierro was being written.

169rhian_of_oz
Nov 29, 2019, 10:55am

My reservation of The Library Book came in today. Nothing like finishing the work week with a visit to the library - literally and literaturely :-).

170rocketjk
Editado: Nov 29, 2019, 2:29pm

>168 thorold: Here is a further report. The two authors I had in mind, above, were Chilean authors Carmen Perez Meyer and Francisco Coloane, both of whom I learned about while my wife and I traveled on the beautiful southern Chilean island of Chiloe.

Meyer seems to be a relatively locally known author, and I found no references online to books of hers in English translation, though I did find her own website and sent a query to her email address to find out for sure.

Coloane is much more famous, and though he was unknown to me, may well be quite well known to you and to others here on Club Read. There is a statue of him in the town square of his birthplace, a beautiful harbor town on Chiloe called Quemchi, which my wife and I visited briefly. I found a couple of short story collections available in translation today and have ordered them.

Also, we visited the amazing Buenos Aires bookstore, El Ateneo Grand Splendid, where I purchased the English-language copy of Fever Dream I mentioned above, but also wrote down the names of a couple of authors whose books looked interesting to see if I could find them in translation when I got home. I did that research today, and the most relevant and interesting of that short list were Argentinian author Flavia Company. (I just ordered the Europa edition of her novel, The Island of Last Truth). The other is Spanish author Javier Cercas. I was able to find and order an English language volume with two short novels, The Tenant and The Motive. Again, I would be surprised if any of these authors are unknown to many of the folks in this group, but they were all new to me.

171thorold
Nov 29, 2019, 5:33pm

>170 rocketjk: Thanks! Javier Cercas is the only one of those I've heard of, I've read and enjoyed several of his books. Darryl is a fan of his as well. It will be interesting to look the others up...

El Ateneo Grand Splendid is somewhere I'd like to visit one day! :-)

172rhian_of_oz
Nov 30, 2019, 10:09am

I needed a smaller book for my handbag than the three I'm currently reading so I chose The Mother-in-Law.

173thorold
Nov 30, 2019, 11:45am

Finished The fire starters and a bonus non-fiction book, Clean and decent : the fascinating history of the bathroom and WC by Lawrence Wright. Both enjoyable, in different ways.

My TBR shelf is getting over full again, so I semi-randomly picked a fairly large book from it to read next, coming up with The terrible privacy of Maxwell Sim. There’s some sort of Donald Crowhurst thing going on, which sounds intriguing...

174dchaikin
Nov 30, 2019, 3:08pm

>173 thorold: Lawrence Wright on the bathroom sounds really entertaining... ?? ah, different Lawrence Wright, didn't realize there were so many. I had the author of The Looming Tower in mind. Still, sounds entertaining.

175LadyoftheLodge
Editado: Dez 5, 2019, 3:34pm

I just finished Christmas at Maplemont Manor: A Novel by Julie Manthey for NetGalley. This was a cute holiday read, which was a self-pub by the author. No one else on LT has this or has reviewed it, apparently. I liked the story, although I hope it had some editing before it was released. Sometimes I am itching to edit the books I read!

I think I will start with The Bake Shop by Amy Clipston, on my NetGalley list.

176ELiz_M
Nov 30, 2019, 4:14pm

I am mosty working my way through several big books (Anniversaries: From a Year in the Life of Gesine Cresspahl, Pilgrimage, Memory of Fire), but have snuck in a few shorter works -- the odd Things: A Story of the Sixties and the thought-provoking The Lonely Passion of Judith Hearne.

177haydninvienna
Dez 1, 2019, 1:58am

>173 thorold: Thanks for the rec of Clean and Decent—my library system has it and I've placed a reserve.

178thorold
Dez 1, 2019, 5:51pm

I finished Maxwell Sim, which was well up to Coe's usual standard. Next off the TBR is the fourth instalment of Boswell's diaries, Boswell on the Grand Tour: Italy, Corsica and France, 1765-1766. Plenty of sex and politics, but not very much art and architecture, so far. I've also picked up Katalin Street for reading on the go.

>174 dchaikin: Not sure that I would feel very safe using a bathroom if the American Lawrence Wright had written about it. You would expect explosions at the very least... :-)

I must look out for a few more of those Penguin Classic History titles — there seem to be some interestingly quirky ones in the list.

179japaul22
Dez 2, 2019, 8:55am

I've just finished an excellent 2019 novel, The Tenth Muse.

I'm also reading Maybe you should talk to someone which is a sort-of memoir of a therapist who seeks therapy after a bad break up. It came highly recommended from two of my "real life" reading friends, but I'm not so sure it's for me. Hoping to finish it up quickly and move on to a library hold that just came in, Midnight in Chernobyl.

And I'm rereading Little Women in anticipation of the new movie.

180Dilara86
Dez 2, 2019, 9:13am

Just starting N. N. by Gyula Krúdy . So far so good. Very poetic and evocative. Next is Iza's Ballad by Magda Szabó. I've liked everything I've read of her so far. I hope I won't be disappointed...

181RidgewayGirl
Dez 2, 2019, 10:55am

I'm reading The Unpassing by Chia Chia Lin, about a family whose parents emigrated from Taiwan to Alaska and who are struggling to get by.

I've begun Herkunft (Origins) by Saša Stanišic. I haven't read in German in a few years but since it hasn't been translated yet, here I am. It will be translated, having won the German Book Prize, seemingly as a rebuke to the Nobel Committee handing an award to Peter Handke. I told my husband that he'd have no trouble finding it at the Hugendubel when he was in Munich and he reported that yes, it was displayed prominently right in the main entrance. There's a light humor to the writing in the first chapters.

And I'm reading Reproduction by Ian Williams, which is set in Toronto. I'm not sure what to make of it so far, as well as the truly excellent Corina & Sabrina, a collection of short stories set primarily in Denver, by Kali Fajardo-Anstine. Each story is just perfect.

182rhian_of_oz
Dez 3, 2019, 9:53am

Another day, another handbag book. The latest is Spinning Silver which is a BB from bragan.

183benitastrnad
Dez 3, 2019, 12:34pm

>179 japaul22:
I had a short appointment with my doctor this morning and in the course of the visit she mentioned that she had just finished reading Tenth Muse and said it was a lovely book. Looks like this is one I need to move up on the TBR pile.

184benitastrnad
Dez 3, 2019, 12:38pm

I finished reading Unlikely Disciple and really enjoyed this book. It was not at all a screed, but was a reasoned look at the largest fundamentalist Christian institution of higher education in the U. S. I recommend this book.

I started reading Personality Brokers: The Strange History of Myers-Briggs and the Birth of Personality Testing by Merve Emre and it is so fascinating that I am already about half done with the book. This one is about the invention of the Myers-Briggs personality inventory and so far it has been a very interesting biography of these two housewives who had no psychological training and how they came up with the most popular personality test ever. Strange how these two untrained people could come up with something that everybody wanted to believe held so many answers.

185thorold
Editado: Dez 3, 2019, 1:05pm

Finished my latest instalment of Boswell, and picked up A literature of their own, which has been slumbering on the TBR for far too long.

>184 benitastrnad: Myers-Briggs must be responsible for more wasted working hours than Tetris and the Windows Blue Screen of Death put together....

186AlisonY
Dez 5, 2019, 8:59am

>156 japaul22: look forward to your thoughts, Jennifer!

187Jim53
Dez 5, 2019, 3:42pm

I'm reading my ER book, Everywhere You Don't Belong, and Elton John's Me.
Este tópico foi continuado por WHAT ARE YOU READING? - Part 6.