What are you reading the week of March 27, 2021?

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What are you reading the week of March 27, 2021?

Mar 26, 11:55pm

Finished up The Landmark Thucydides, a well annotated version of his History of the Peloponnesian War. I've started The Landmark Xenophon's Hellenika, but I'm taking a quick detour this weekend to read The Cook of the Halcyon. This is the latest Inspector Montalbano mystery.

Mar 27, 7:17am

Clydebank Battlecruisers, Panting for Glory, and The Human are what I'm working on right now.

Mar 27, 11:01am

I'm reading Hard Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami. It's been too long since I've read Murakami! His books always give me weird dreams and it's already started.

I'm also reading Pedagogy of the Oppressed by Paulo Freire with my Anti-Racist Teacher group.

Editado: Mar 27, 2:40pm

Greetings all! I'm a bit past the halfway mark of In Struggle: SNCC and the Black Awakening of the 1960s by Clayborne Carson, a history of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, the seminal civil rights group that did so much crucial work, and risked their lives daily, in the American deep south.

Mar 28, 10:45am

Three To Get Deadly – Janet Evanovich
Book on CD read by Lori Petty


Book three in the Stephanie Plum series features “Uncle Max” – the proprietor of a storied candy shop / soda fountain who has gone missing. Stephanie needs to find him because he’d skipped his court appearance on a traffic warrant, but the closer she gets to finding him the more elusive he seems to be, and the more bodies Stephanie comes across.

I first read this long before I joined either Shelfari or Goodreads, so the first date read is a bit of a guess. This is a hugely entertaining series that continues to delight and make me chuckle even on re-reading.

The success of the series is due in part to the likeable Stephanie, and her romantic conflict between Joe Morelli and Ranger. But the supporting characters are also marvelous: her long-suffering mother, who almost always has a pot roast just about ready; her Grandma Mazur, whose chief hobby is attending funerals (and there had better be an open casket!); and Lula, the former whore turned file clerk at the bonds office, and who frequently accompanies Stephanie on her adventures.

Lori Petty does a great job of reading the abridged audio version of this book. Having read the book previously, I didn’t feel I was missing much by the listening to the abridged version. Petty sets a good pace and I loved the voices she used for both Stephanie and Lula.

Mar 28, 11:15am

Hot Six – Janet Evanovich
Book on CD read by Debi Mazar 4****

Episode Six in the Stephanie Plum series has our charmingly inept bounty hunter on the trail of her mentor, and man of hot dreams, Ranger. But Ranger is mixed up in a pretty dicey situation and two thugs are on Steph’s trail, hoping she’ll lead them to Ranger. Bad enough, but Grandma Mazur has moved in, and Steph’s been saddled with the dog from hell, Bob.

This is possibly the funniest of the books in the series that I’ve read. I first read this in about March 2003, and I remember clearly reading in the cafeteria during my lunch break and bursting out in laughter loud enough to have people several tables away look up to see what was going on. It’s the scene where Bob is kidnapped by the two thugs … just after he’s eaten two boxes of Grandma Mazur’s prunes (box and contents). Good Boy, Bob!

I’m re-reading many of these now for a team challenge. But they’re also a great distraction from the serious issues facing our country right now.

Debi Mazar does a great job of reading the abridged audio version of this book. Having read the book previously, I really missed the episode of Bob in the car of the bad guys, after he’d eaten two entire boxes of prunes (box and contents). I was glad I had the text handy, so I could read that again.

Mar 28, 12:02pm

Finished listening to The Grammarians.

Next up for listening is The Art of Falling by Danielle McLaughlin.

Editado: Mar 28, 1:04pm

Mar 28, 3:11pm

In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash
Jean Shepherd
5/5 stars
This book was the basis for the wonderful film A Christmas Story and is a fictional account of Shepard’s life as a child in Indiana. It starts out with Ralph returning to his hometown and hooking up with his friend Flick, now a bartender at his own bar and relating their childhood /adolescent escapades. Some of the stories that were included in the film were altered and a few of the stories were not covered in the film but it was a great read and hard to put down. Highly recommended!

Mar 28, 4:56pm

Enjoying this hoopla audiobook ~

Nobody's Sweetheart Now
by Maggie Robinson
(Lady Adelaide Mysteries)

Mar 28, 8:20pm

I just finished reading American Nations which is a A fine tuning and expansion of Albion's Seed about the 11 cultural nations created upon their inception and holding firm through time, expansion of influence, and immigrant influxes. A very fascinating and revealing way to understand the hegemony of the Americas.

Mar 28, 9:55pm

>10 JulieLill: In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash was one of my bibles when I was a kid in Jersey on the late 60s. You may already know this, but Jean Shepherd was on the radio 4 or 5 nights a week in the NY/NJ metropolitan area on radio station WOR. For 45 minutes every night, he told stories about his childhood like the stories in the book. Obviously, it was fiction: for example, sometimes he was on the football team, sometimes he was the sousaphone player in the marching band. He also told stories about his army days as well as just talking in general about current events. There was a time when Norman Mailer ran for Democratic nomination for mayor of NYC using the platform that New York City should become the 51st state. Satirizing that, Shepherd had a series of programs where he proclaimed that the city should instead become the Grand Duchy of New Amsterdam. Whatever it was, we'd show up in school the next day and the first thing we'd say to each other was, "Did you hear Shep last night?" I even got to see him perform (basically long form standup comedy) at Seton Hall University a couple of times. Later, he did a travelog TV program called Jean Shepherd's America.

There's audio of his radio shows on youtube. One of my favorites is his show about becoming The Worm King of Cleveland Street.


Mar 29, 11:44am

>13 rocketjk: I didn't realize he was on radio. Thanks for all the information!

Editado: Mar 29, 12:00pm

>13 rocketjk: I have fond memories,too, of listening to his radio show on WOR as a kid, late at night, way past my bedtime. We had the book in the house, too. Funny, funny guy.

Mar 29, 1:19pm

>13 rocketjk: Many, many years ago we saw a movie on the Disney Channel called Ollie Hopnoodle's Haven of Bliss. It was based on Jean Shepherd's writing and he was in the movie. We thought it was hilarious and have never come across it again. Now I see that Amazon has it on VHS for a whopping $74.90!

Oh, just found it on youtube, too.

Mar 29, 1:41pm

>16 perennialreader: Interesting! I'd not heard of that. There's also a follow-up movie to "A Christmas Story," originally titled "It Runs in the Family" but rereleased later with the name changed to "My Summer Story." The cast is different from the original, with Charles Grodin and Mary Steenburgen playing the parents. Kieran Culkin plays Ralphie. I've never seen it, though.

Mar 29, 4:45pm

Just finished reading, Boy, Snow, Bird. A lovely book!

Next up for reading is Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson.

Editado: Mar 30, 5:52am

Finished listening to The Art Of Falling.

Next up for listening is Next Time This Year We'll Be Laughing by Jacqueline Winspear.

Mar 30, 8:58am

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Decided to reread the whole series after I finished Chain of Iron
Hands down my favorite series.
Also I'm reading Darkfever by Karen Moning, Becoming Dangerous edited by Katie West and Cowboy Jacked by Harper Young (an ebook available on Kindle written by my dear friend).

Mar 30, 4:15pm

I just finished Life after Life by Kate Atkinson. The premise is about the way life and history could change if certain decisions or happenings were different. One really had to pay attention to the dates used as chapter headings. And it helps to have a good handle on the history of the first half of the 20th century. I wasn’t so good at all the literary references though.

Editado: Mar 30, 9:40pm

Just finished Shuggie Bain which was a long but worthwhile read for me.

Editado: Mar 31, 11:16am

When Eight Bells Toll
Alistair MacLean
4/5 stars
This is the suspenseful fictional tale of the British Secret Service. Philip Calvert, agent, is called upon by his superior chief, Rear Admiral Sir Arthur Arnford-Jones to assist in a mission to find the Nantesville, a ship which has gone missing with eight millions pounds of gold. But this is not the first ship to go missing; but it was the first ship that was equipped with a transmitter and 2 secret servicemen aboard. Can Calvert find the ship without getting killed and just who could he trust? I have never read MacLean before but I found his writing compelling.

Editado: Mar 31, 1:02pm

Enjoying this audiobook via hoopla ~
The Lost Apothecary: A Novel
by Sarah Penner

started this OverDrive Kindle book ~
Irish Parade Murder (A Lucy Stone Mystery)
by Leslie Meier

Mar 31, 12:55pm

Still working on Carrying the Fire, astronaut Michael Collins memoir about his involvement in the Gemini and Apollo programs. Many people have recommended this one as "the best" of the astronaut books, but I'm finding that it drags. The segment just finished, about their actual Gemini 10 mission, was fascinating, and I'm sure the Apollo 11 segment will be the same.

And I'm interspersing that with bites of The Toynbee Convector, which is a collection of Bradbury short stories, many of which I'd never read before. I'm rationing those out to make it last!

Getting ready to go in for hip surgery next week, so I've loaded up my Kindle. (I always think I'm going to get so much reading done, but inevitably don't have enough concentration to actually do much. But I don't want to get stuck without!)

Mar 31, 3:52pm

How To Train Your Dragon – Cressida Cowell
Digital audiobook performed by David Tennant

A delightful children’s fantasy book about dragons and Vikings and young people who rise to the occasion. The names of the characters (SnotLout, Fishlegs, Dogsbreath…etc) will appeal to tween boys as well.

I’ve never seen the movie, and I don’t have children, so really didn’t know what to expect. But I was completely charmed by this outrageous story. It’s fantastical, but relatable. Kids deal with bullies, with adults who don’t’ listen to them, with fear and courage and friends they can rely on. They worry about looking foolish, or appearing scared. They support their friends and stand up for what’s right. They’re smart, inventive, resilient and tenacious.

David Tennant does a marvelous job of narrating the audio version. The voices he uses for the Green Death Dragon and for Toothless, the heroic mini-dragon are wonderful.

Mar 31, 4:05pm

Finished: The Man on a Donkey by H. F. M. Prescott—5*
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston—5*

Ongoing: Grant by Ron Chernow, about 2/3 through

Just started: Jamaica Inn by Daphne Du Maurier

Mar 31, 4:16pm

White Fragility – Robin DiAngelo
Book on CD read by Amy Landon

Subtitle: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism

I’m not sure what to think about this book. I am a person of color. And this book is written by a white woman, trying to explain why it is so difficult for white people to have meaningful conversations – and, more importantly, change behaviors – about racism.

I agree with some of her perspectives and applaud her efforts at calling out racism in a tactful manner that is more likely to engender conversation and less likely to result in aggressive push-back. Not that her tactic always works.

I think I’ll wait to write more until after my F2F book club meeting in November. It should be interesting … I am one of two POC in the group, and I think the other will not be available for the meeting.

I listened to the audio because it was the version that arrived first and I needed to get this read for the book club meeting. (At this writing, though I requested the book in JULY, I am still # 21 on the hold list. Anyway … Amy Landon’s delivery was slow and deliberate, needed for the listener to absorb some of the information. Still, I think this is a book best read in text format.

Mar 31, 4:18pm

Finished The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness. Added Moonflower Murders by Anthony Horowitz to my reading rotation.

Editado: Mar 31, 6:34pm

Just finished In Five Years which I liken to the book equivalent of a rom-com. Finished in 1 day. Sometimes you need that.

Editado: Mar 31, 10:32pm

Finished from the library:
The Dark Heart of Florence by Tasha Alexander
The new and #15 installment in the Lady Emily Mysteries series. Emily and Colin leave London for Florence to solve a house break in with sensitive connections to the British Crown. The home belongs to Colin's stepdaughter who inherited it from her late mother.

Jo & Laurie by Margaret Stohl and Melissa de la Cruz (teen)
A retelling of Little Women with a different outcome for Jo March and Teddy Laurence! The authors combined the events from Little Women and Alcott's life.

Colors of Truth by Tamera Alexander
The 2nd installment in "Carnton" series. Catronia and Nora leave Ireland to find their missing brother Ryan. His last letter came from Franklin, Tennessee. Wade Cunningham, a Secret Service Agent, is undercover at Carnton as he investigates a counterfeiting ring in the area. The novel picks up after events in With this Pledge. The 3rd and finale is set to release this summer.

Current read: Masquerade at Middlecrest Abbey by Abigail Wilson
In 1815, Elizabeth Cantrell and her baby son Isaac take refuge at Middlecrest Abbey in southeast Britain. Adrian, Lord Torrington, is an agent for the Crown looking for French spies in the area. This novel appears to be part of a series--there are references to events and characters from the author's previous two novels. Wish the author had come up with a name for this series!

Abr 1, 10:21am

>25 LyndaInOregon: Good luck with your surgery! Best to be prepared just in case, right?!

Abr 1, 12:33pm

>31 princessgarnet: Jo & Laurie sounds interesting so I added to my reading list. Currently I am reading Alcott's Eight Cousins.

Editado: Abr 2, 12:25am

Finished listening to the marvelous memoir, This Time Next Year We'll Be Laughing by Jacqueline Winspear.

Next up for listening is The Sea, The Sea by Iris Murdoch.

Abr 2, 4:03pm

I finished In Struggle: SNCC and the Black Awakening of the 1960s by Clayborne Carson. This extremely interesting volume traces the development, achievements and ultimate demise of the Southern Nonviolent Coordinating Committee one of the eminent organizations in the Civil Rights movement in the Deep South in the early- to mid-1960s. By the late 60s, the group had evolved to enter the forefront of the Black Nationalist movement. I think that, together, this book and Black Against Empire, the terrific history of the Black Panthers that I read last year, go a long way toward providing a good picture of the crucial events of those days. You can find more in-depth comments on my 50-Book Challenge thread.

Next up for me will be a short memoir by General Eisenhower's jeep driver, Sgt. Mickey and General Ike.

Editado: Abr 2, 6:45pm

Finished my 3rd book of the week, the intense Dear Child, a fictional account of abduction and discovery set in Germany. Comparable to Room, but told from several people's voices.

Abr 3, 8:59am

The new thread is up over here.