Irene's (atozgrl) Reading 2023 - Part 3

É uma continuação do tópico Irene's (atozgrl) Reading 2023 - Part 2.

Discussão75 Books Challenge for 2023

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Irene's (atozgrl) Reading 2023 - Part 3

Editado: Out 1, 12:37 pm

^Mill at York State Historic Park in Tennessee - posted in honor of the book about Sgt. York that I read earlier this year - picture taken June 2023

Hello everyone! Welcome to my third thread of 2023.

I am new to this group, so we'll see how well I do toward making it to 75 books read in 2023. I don't know if I've ever completed that many books in one year. If I have, it certainly hasn't been since I was in college.

Since I haven't contributed to threads in LT over the years, here's a little about me. My name is Irene. I live in North Carolina. I'm a recently retired librarian, retired in the middle of last year. My work in the library was mostly with systems and websites, not so much directly with books. I joined LT all the way back in 2008, and around 2010-2011, I was making good progress getting my library of books entered into LT. Then work and life got in the way, and I haven't been active on LT for a long time. I also haven't been reading many books, even though the love of books was why I got into librarianship in the first place. The problem is that I want long blocks of time to read books, and I didn't seem to ever have much, between commuting to work and back, fixing dinner when I got home, and being mostly brain-dead after all that. And weekends were taken up by chores that couldn't get done during the week. So I didn't have much time for reading long-form books. The reading I was doing was mostly magazines or online articles, all shorter form materials.

Once I retired, I started to get back into reading more books, now that I had more time available. By the end of the year, I thought I needed to find some way of keeping track of what I've read, so I don't accidentally re-read something I've already read. And, duh! Of course, I already had an account on LT. So I came back, and started adding or updating the books I had read in 2022. Unfortunately, since I hadn't thought of it earlier, I could only estimate the dates I finished reading.

Then while poking around LT some more and looking to see what's new and what I had forgotten, I stumbled across the 75 Books Challenge. I thought it would be an interesting challenge, so I decided to jump in. I'm not sure if I can complete 75 books, since I've only been reading about 1 a week for the last six weeks or so. That would get me to 50-odd books in a year, if I can even keep up this pace, which might get harder once the weather is nicer out. But it's worth a shot. At the very least, this will give me a place to keep track of the books I read this year.

As for the kinds of books I read, in recent years it has been mostly nonfiction, especially history. But I hope to get back into more fiction this year.

Looking forward to meeting more book lovers!

Editado: Ontem, 10:35 pm

Also participating in:

1. The ROOT challenge
Link to my thread there:

2. 2023 Nonfiction Challenge (75 Books Challenge) 75NF
    - Favorite Pastimes in February
    - Empires in March
    - The Sea in April
    - May: Literary Biography - did not read anything for this challenge
    - June: Indigenous/Aboriginal Peoples/First Nations
    - July: Explorations and Expeditions - did not read anything for this challenge
    - August: The World of the Land, Trees and Plants
    - September: Family Ties (a family-based memoir) - did not read anything for this challenge
    - October: Crimes, Mysteries, Puzzles, Enigmas
    - November: Matters of Faith and Philosophy
    - December: As You Like It

3. Reading Through Time
     Quarterly Challenges (RTTQ)
        - Jan-March 2023: WWI (1914-1918)
        - April-June 2023: Between the Wars (1919-1938)
        - July-September 2023: World War II (1939-1945)
        - October-December 2023: 1946-Present
     Monthly Challenges (RTTM)
        - February 2023: Lions, Tigers, and Bears, Oh My!
        - March 2023: Notorious Women
        - April 2023: April Fool
        - May 2023: The Big City - Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
        - June 2023: the Fabulous Fifties
        - July 2023: Revolutions
        - August 2023: Immigration and Migration - did not read anything for this challenge
        - September 2023: School Days
        - October 2023: Tradition
        - November 2023: Indigenous People
        - December 2023: Reader's Choice

4. 2023 RandomKIT (RKIT)
     Monthly Challenges
        - October 2023: Treats, not tricks

I also joined a RL book club earlier this year, and have started reading books with that group.

Note: hat-tip to kac522 for the challenge codes.

Out 1, 12:38 pm

ROOTs Counter

Editado: Out 1, 12:46 pm

Books read in 2023 - first half of year

1. The Man Who Loved Books Too Much, by Allison Hoover Bartlett. - ROOT
2. The Double Helix, by James D. Watson. - ROOT; Read to learn more for a class we're taking on DNA.
3. Dewey: the Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World, by Vicki Myron. (re-read)

4. Dewey's Nine Lives, by Vicki Myron. - ROOT; 75NF; RTTM
5. The Chicago Cubs: Story of a Curse by Rich Cohen. - ROOT; 75NF
6. Fly the W: 2016 World Champions. - ROOT; 75NF
7. Seabiscuit: an American Legend by Laura Hillenbrand. - ROOT; 75NF; RTTM

8. Leave the Gun, Take the Cannoli: the Epic Story of the Making of The Godfather by Mark Seal. - 75NF for Feb. (started in Feb., finished in March)
9. First to fly : the story of the Lafayette Escadrille, the American heroes who flew for France in World War I by Charles Bracelen Flood. - RTTQ
10. Sergeant York and His People by Sam K. Cowan. - ROOT; RTTQ
11. Cleopatra: a Life by Stacy Schiff. - ROOT; 75NF; RTTM

12. Intermittent Fasting for Women 40, 50 and Older: Natural Approach to Balancing Hormones, Losing Weight, and Reversing Aging by Kalina Keilah. - Early Reviewers
13. Tyll by Daniel Kehlmann. - RTTM
14. Witness to the Dark by Wolf Holles. - Early Reviewers

15. Raising the Hunley : the remarkable history and recovery of the lost Confederate submarine by Brian Hicks, Schuyler Kropf. - ROOT; 75NF
16. Historic Raleigh by Jennifer A. Kulikowski and Kenneth E. Peters. - ROOT; RTTM

17. The Deluge: The Great War, America and the Remaking of the Global Order by Adam Tooze. - RTTQ
18. Ancient pioneers : the first Americans by George E. Stuart. - ROOT; 75NF
19. Big Lies in a Small Town by Diane Chamberlain. - Book Club

Editado: Ontem, 4:20 pm

Books read in 2023 - second half of year

20. George Washington's First War: His Early Military Adventures by David A. Clary. ROOT; RTTM
21. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. - Book Club; RTTQ
22. Revolutionary Summer: the Birth of American Independence by Joseph J. Ellis. - ROOT; RTTM

23. Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak. - ROOT; RTTM
24. Wilmington's Lie: the murderous coup of 1898 and the rise of white supremacy by David Zucchino. - Book Club
25. Ribbon of Sand: the amazing convergence of the ocean & the Outer Banks by John Alexander and James Lazell. - ROOT; 75NF

26. Unbroken : a World War II story of survival, resilience, and redemption by Laura Hillenbrand. - ROOT; RTTQ
27. A Separate Peace by John Knowles. - RTTM (re-read)
28. People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks. - Book Club
29. The Greatest Generation by Tom Brokaw. - ROOT; RTTQ

30. Jackson Haines: the skating king by Ryan Stevens. - Early Reviewers
31. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. - RTTM
32. And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini. 3.75 - Book Club; RTTQ
33. The Island of Lost Maps: a True Story of Cartographic Crime by Miles Harvey. - ROOT; 75NF

34. The Cubs way : the Zen of building the best team in baseball and breaking the curse by Tom Verducci. - ROOT; RKIT
35. An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz. - ROOT; RTTM
36. Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline. - Book Club
37. The language of science and faith : straight answers to genuine questions by Karl W. Giberson and Francis S. Collins. - ROOT; 75NF

Out 1, 12:41 pm

Coding for stars.

Instructions at

Out 1, 12:41 pm

Welcome to my new thread, everyone!

Out 1, 1:14 pm

Happy new thread Irene!

And a very belated Happy Thingaversary! It looks like you and I joined LT at almost the same time.

Out 1, 2:18 pm

Happy new thread, Irene.

Out 1, 6:02 pm

>8 humouress: >9 ArlieS: Thank you!

Yes, Nina, it looks like you signed up for LT just a few days before I did. It just took me a lot longer to get involved in the social aspects of the site. My loss!

Out 1, 7:23 pm

Happy new thread, Irene. I just read your bio and noted your "concern" about not making hit to 75. I hope you know that no one here really cares. It's a target not an obligation. Some people read WAY more than that, some don't make it every year and some may never make it. I think the joy of this site is sharing what we do read and some about our lives with each other. This is my 17th year (I think) and the 75'ers have become very dear to me. Welcome and enjoy!!

Out 1, 8:21 pm

Happy new thread!

Out 1, 9:10 pm

Happy new thread, Irene.

Out 1, 10:15 pm

>11 RebaRelishesReading: Thank you, Reba! Yes, I've heard that a lot. I know I won't make it to 75 this year, but I obviously chose the right group to join, because I've met so many wonderful people here. I'd need to switch over from all the nonfiction to a lot of shorter fiction to get to 75. But I'm still satisfied with the progress I've made with my reading this year. And the joy of sharing what we're reading is something I have really gotten out of this group. Thanks for the welcome!

Out 1, 10:16 pm

>12 figsfromthistle: >13 PaulCranswick: Thanks so much, Anita and Paul! It's always great to see you here.

Out 2, 7:10 am

Hi Irene! Happy new thread.

>1 atozgrl: I'm not sure if I can complete 75 books, since I've only been reading about 1 a week for the last six weeks or so. That would get me to 50-odd books in a year, if I can even keep up this pace, which might get harder once the weather is nicer out. But it's worth a shot. At the very least, this will give me a place to keep track of the books I read this year. My take on this group: Quite a few of us read way less or way more than 75 books a year but are in this group for the friendship and chatting. I usually read around 100 books but have gone crazy the last two years. It’s all good.

>5 atozgrl: My dad was part of The Greatest Generation, never talked about the war except for 2 humorous stories related to food. In hindsight, I see that he had PTSD.

Out 2, 8:00 am

Happy New Thread, Irene. I hope you had a good weekend. Yep, our Cubbies went out with a whimper. Hey, at least we got to enjoy about 6 weeks of very entertaining ball by them. Hoping they can pull it together next year. No point bringing up the Bears again...sighs.

I plan on getting out and doing some birding this week. Beautiful here.

Out 2, 5:02 pm

>16 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen! My dad only told us a little bit about what he did. Of course, he got pulled into the work at Los Alamos, and he wouldn't say much at all about that, because he said he didn't know what had been declassified. Fortunately, he never had to go into battle. I honestly don't know how anyone who served in battle can avoid getting PTSD.

Out 2, 5:11 pm

>17 msf59: Thanks, Mark! It's a shame the Cubs' season had to end on such a down note, after they did so well to get back in the playoff chase. But they went back to losing a lot of one-run games like they did early in the year. The Braves didn't help by losing three to Miami and then a week later sweeping three from the Cubs. But they did give us those 6 weeks of exciting baseball and weren't eliminated until the next to last day. Before the season, everyone was predicting them to be out of contention and finish below .500, and the team showed they were much better than that. I hope they can keep it up next year. If they lose Bellinger, they'll have a lot of production to replace.

Sorry about the Bears. The Panthers are pitiful too.

I'm glad to hear you're having great weather. Have fun with the birding--I hope you get to see some good birds! We should have good weather here this week as well.

Out 2, 7:15 pm

Wordle 835 5/6


Puzzle #113

Out 2, 8:43 pm

Happy new one, Irene!

Out 2, 11:34 pm

>21 drneutron: Thanks, Jim!

Out 3, 2:20 am

Happy New Thread, Irene! I think I've managed 32 books so far this year, and no way will I make it to 75. Lots of us are here for good chats, books and companionship, no need to worry about numbers.

Out 3, 6:07 am

>23 vancouverdeb: I'm slightly ahead of both of you with 47 books. I'm still hoping ...

Out 3, 12:26 pm

>23 vancouverdeb: Thanks, Deborah! Most of the opener was what I wrote when I joined the group in January. At this point, I'm really not worried about numbers. I'm just enjoying all of the discussions and the companionship, as you say.

>24 humouress: Good luck, Nina, I hope you get there! I'm rooting you on!

Out 3, 12:59 pm

>14 atozgrl: I know I won't make it to 75 this year We are not the book police. To my knowledge, no one in the 15 years I have been a part of this wonderful group of people, has been thrown out of the group due to not hitting the 75 book mark :)

Happy new thread, Irene!

Out 3, 3:26 pm

>25 atozgrl: Thank you :0)

Out 3, 4:01 pm

>26 alcottacre: Thanks, Stasia! I do see quite a few folks who are greatly exceeding 75 books read though. Amazing!

Out 3, 4:05 pm

Wordle 836 4/6

SLATE, RIFLE, GUILE, WHILE I should have had this in 2. I actually thought of what turned out to be the correct answer first, but wanted to use some more common letters in my second guess.

Puzzle #114

Today's Connections was the easiest puzzle (for me) in a while.

Editado: Out 3, 11:49 pm

30. Jackson Haines: the skating king by Ryan Stevens

I received a free copy of Jackson Haines: the skating king through LibraryThing’s Early Reviewers program. It is a biography about the so-called “father of figure skating.” Apparently not much is known about Haines’ life, and what has been told about him is often untrue. Stevens sets out in this book to rectify that situation. He has done a tremendous amount of research on Haines’ life, which is reflected in the almost 500 footnotes that accompany the text.

The book tells the story of Haines’ life, as much as can be found from primary sources. It covers his early life and his attraction to skating. His skill at skating was acclaimed at an early age, and he began to give performances, in both roller skating and ice skating, eventually accompanied by music. He toured in the U.S. and Canada before leaving for Europe in 1864, never to return to North America. Stevens recounts Haines’ life in Europe and the many places he traveled to while performing. The book also tells of Haines’ relatives, whose lives trended toward the tragic, with the early deaths of some of his siblings and his children. This book debunks some of the myths surrounding Haines’ life and summarizes the legacy that he left to figure skating. Unfortunately, some of the story is rather dry, as it consists of a recounting of the places he travelled to and the performances he gave. There is not enough information in the existing primary sources to give more meat to the story. I also noted several places where there were some grammatical errors in the writing, which could use an editor, but those are relatively minor.

Overall, I appreciate the meticulous research that went into the writing of this book, and Stevens performs a service to fans of figure skating by debunking myths surrounding Jackson Haines and giving us a factual book about his life. Recommended for anyone interested in the history of figure skating.

Out 4, 12:48 pm

>29 atozgrl: I agree re Connections -- for the first time ever it just seemed to come together for me

Out 5, 12:28 pm

>31 RebaRelishesReading: Hello, Reba, thanks for stopping by! Today was another good Connections day for me.

Wordle 838 3/6


Puzzle #116
As a baseball fan, I saw the link to baseball teams right away, but since there were 5 words that could fit, I had to solve some of the other groups first.

Out 5, 12:29 pm

>32 atozgrl: It was pretty good for me today too. I had one wrong in the first try and then it came together. Wordle took me 4 but that's not too bad either.

Out 5, 12:45 pm

>33 RebaRelishesReading: I take Wordle in 4 as a good day, unless it's like the other day when I had the right word in 2 but decided to use something else instead. In that case, I can be annoyed with myself. But 4 is the usual for me.

Out 5, 12:53 pm

Yesterday was a busy day. I went to the Senior Center for a presentation on Alzheimer's, to learn more about the warning signs. (No immediate concerns, but since my mom had it, I'm trying to educate myself more.) Then I had a dermatology appointment in the afternoon, and the doctor was running a little bit late, so I had to wait longer than hoped. Finally, I had an appointment at the Publix Pharmacy to get my COVID shot. When I got there, I asked if I could get my flu shot too, and they said they could do that, so I took care of both at once. Got the COVID shot in my left arm and the flu shot in my right. The flu shot really hurt going in; it's been quite a while since one hurt me like that. Today I'm dragging, and both arms are sore, but I'm not feeling bad. The last few COVID shots I've gotten have left me feeling like I was coming down with something by the end of the day. I haven't experienced that feeling so far. Maybe because I got the shot after 4:00 it was late enough in the day that I slept through the usual reaction.

Today is going to be a slow, recovery day.

Out 6, 12:39 am

>35 atozgrl: Oh, the flu shot and the covid vaccine at once. I think I would feel too lousy at if I got both at once. I always feel tired and have a sore arm after my covid vaccines. I usually get me covid vaccine in the later part of the day and plan on doing nothing the next day. Usually I end up taking advil for my sore arm. I hope you are feeling better .

Out 6, 9:02 am

Happy Friday, Irene. I also got both shots at once too. Only the flu shot arm was sore for a day or two. Hey, the Bears finally won! And did a great job at it. Actually, they should have won last week too, letting a big lead slip by. Very cool here this weekend. I need Jackson to warm me up.

Out 6, 10:28 am

>35 atozgrl: The last (4th) covid shot I had, my arm felt sore on that spot for ages (at least a couple of weeks) although I don't think I had any other reaction. It could have been a phantom pain - I wasn't about to poke it to find out. *shudder* I'm not the kind of person who volunteers to take shots; at least by taking both together, you got it over and done with.

Out 6, 10:57 pm

Happy New Thread!

Editado: Out 7, 1:53 pm

>18 atozgrl: Count my dad as another who rarely talked about the war (WW II). He served in the Canadian Air Force; some kind of gunner, probably on bombers (I don't know for sure). We heard funny stories about interactions with British civilians - he was based in the UK - nothing about any actual missions.

>35 atozgrl: Gratz on getting both shots. Sleeping through the worst of the reaction - or any of it - is great.

Out 7, 1:53 pm

>28 atozgrl: Some can, some cannot. Circumstances differ. I got to 455 last year (not to toot my own horn, mind you) but I am not going to get anywhere close to that this year. There has just been too much other stuff going on.

Have a wonderful weekend, Irene!

Out 7, 4:23 pm

>36 vancouverdeb: >37 msf59: >38 humouress: >40 ArlieS: Thanks for the well wishes. I have been feeling better the last two days. The arm soreness is completely gone today. I'm glad to have gotten the vaccinations over and done with!

>39 SilverWolf28: Thanks Silver!

>41 alcottacre: Thanks Stasia! I'll read as many as I can this year, and I'll be happy with whatever I do.

Out 7, 4:28 pm

Wordle 840 4/6

Struggled a bit with this one today. SLATE, LAUGH, ROYAL, VIOLA

I almost skipped Connections this morning when I looked at it. But I played, figured out a couple of groups after looking at it for a while, then finally figured out the pattern for the last two. I was probably down to my last guess. Unfortunately, I can't post it because the page in my browser is gone, and I'd have to replay the game. Don't know why the result doesn't save if you return to the page the way Wordle does.

Editado: Out 7, 4:40 pm

My DH has his jazz gig tonight, so we're getting ready for that.

We'll be leaving town on Monday to go see my MiL in Mississippi. She had a fall a few weeks ago and cracked her tailbone. Unfortunately, she wasn't able to stand for a while. My SiL had to stay with her almost continually for a while, and finally got someone to stay with her overnight for a couple of weeks. Her mom didn't like that. They've had a physical therapist coming a couple of times a week, and she's able to get around some now, and no longer has to use the port-a-potty. But she still needs someone to stay with her for a significant time every day, and she really only wants her daughter. Of course, my SiL is completely stressed out now.

So we're going down for a couple of weeks to give SiL and her husband a break. They've actually made plans to come in our direction and spend time in the NC mountains. It looks like we'll need to do some yard work while we're there, though not as much as we did in the spring. We'll also have to take her to one doctor appointment. We'll be doing the cooking and probably some housework. My MiL is apparently watching even less TV than before, so I may miss some programs I would like to see. However, I might be able to get a lot of reading in--we'll just have to see. I'll be taking a good number of books though, in case.

I will be offline while we're gone, because MiL does not have internet. I'll have a lot of catching up to do when we get back.

Out 7, 6:25 pm

>43 atozgrl: I think at least half of the time with Connections the fourth category for me is just "what's left over". I can usually identify the connection of the other three categories but someone there's always one that I don't see until they tell me in what way they are connected.

Out 8, 4:55 am

Belated happy new thread, Irene!
I am very glad you found us. I joined LT a few months earlier, but then found this group in the same year.

Good luck taking care of your MiL, and cudo's for giving your SiL a break.

Out 8, 4:15 pm

>45 RebaRelishesReading: Me too. Most of the time the fourth category is what's left over. But sometimes I do see the pattern, and I did eventually see it yesterday. Most of the time I don't. I have to say, when I first looked at the words in yesterday's puzzle, it looked like a bunch of names, and I nearly just went away without playing.

Out 8, 4:21 pm

>46 FAMeulstee: Thanks, Anita! I am glad I finally found the group as well! I just wasn't looking for an online social hangout when I first joined LT, so I missed out for quite a while. I'm making up for lost time.

The trip will be "interesting." I'm not sure how I'll do, but will give it my best. I just hope we can make my MiL happy. My SiL and BiL really do deserve a break. It would be a lot easier to help out more if we didn't live so far away. But neither of us want to live in Mississippi. Or Alabama either, even though most of my cousins (on my mother's side) are there. We like North Carolina.

Out 8, 4:29 pm

We're working on getting ready for our trip today. We went to the late service at church this morning because we were up rather late due to my DH's jazz gig last night. That means that we're later getting started with packing than we would like. But we're not in a big rush to leave early tomorrow, since we plan to drive part way and stop in a hotel overnight. We just need to get through Atlanta.

Wordle 841 3/6


Out 12, 8:40 pm

Hope your trip goes smoothly and your MIL continues to heal from her fall.

Out 13, 12:45 am

I hope your trip goes well, and that you MIL continues to recover from her fall. I visited with my sister today and she got both the flu shot and covid vaccine a few days ago. Both in one arm, because she finds her arm painful after the shots, so she how could she sleep on her side if both of her arms were sore. In Canada, there is 6 month wait between covid vaccines, so I'll be waiting until November or December for my covid vaccine.

Out 13, 7:51 am

Happy Friday, Irene. I hope you got to your destination safely. Good luck there and hoping your MIL has a quick recovery.

Out 13, 10:47 am

Hi Irene!

>35 atozgrl: Glad you got your flu and Covid shots. Sorry you had sore arms and were dragging.

>40 ArlieS: Arlie, I only heard funny stories about food from my dad when he was in Europe in WWII.

>44 atozgrl: I’m so glad to know that your DH plays jazz trombone. As I wrote on my thread, my daughter was in Jazz Band in high school for all 4 years. She hasn’t continued with it after her first two years of college, though.

Safe travels, and I hope the time with your MiL goes well.

Out 20, 7:57 pm

I hope the trip to visit/take care of your MIL goes well.

Out 21, 1:26 am

>40 ArlieS: People make a place don't they, Irene? Malaysia is a visually striking place but I had no sense of belonging here until I became part of a family and collected a wonderful assortment of friends, acquaintances and colleagues.

Have a lovely weekend.

Out 23, 4:24 pm

>50 bell7: >51 vancouverdeb: >52 msf59: >53 karenmarie: >54 figsfromthistle: Thanks everyone for your well wishes! We're finally back from our trip, and we are quite tired. It's nice to be able to sleep in our own bed, and to have wi-fi again!

My MiL is doing much better, is able to get around fairly well now, and is making her own breakfast and lunch. She started making her own lunch after we got down there, and she even did a load of laundry. She's still using a walker, and is reluctant to graduate to a cane, even though the PT is encouraging her to use it. Now that she's able to do more on her own, the burden on my SiL is greatly reduced. My SiL and BiL had a really nice vacation while we were down there, and she's definitely in a much better frame of mind now.

I was able to get a fair amount of reading done, though maybe not as much as I had hoped. I finished two books and I'm in the middle of another. Comments to come soon.

Out 23, 4:26 pm

>55 PaulCranswick: Agreed Paul, people do make the place. I'm glad you've got such a wonderful group of friends and acquaintances, and most importantly, the family! Wishing you a great week!

Editado: Out 26, 11:39 am

31. Things fall apart by Chinua Achebe

I read this book for the October Reading Through Time challenge: Tradition. This was a book that I was late to hear about. It's a classic, but it was never mentioned when I was in school or college. I hope they study it now. I had picked up a copy earlier this year, and when I saw this month's challenge, I knew that this was the book to read.

It tells the story of an Igbo clan in Nigeria, and we learn about their life and customs. I knew nothing about these customs, so I found this interesting, and I learned a lot. Some of the customs were shocking, such as abandoning twins in the forest because they were considered evil, and the decision to kill the boy taken from another clan after he had lived with them for three years was something I did not understand. But overall the culture that they had developed seemed to work for them.

Eventually, Europeans arrive. Missionaries come in and Europeans set up a government based on their own traditions. The clash between cultures was quite extreme. They were not really able to understand each other because the difference between their backgrounds and understanding of the world was so very great. The cultures are so different that it is hard to see how they can ever reach accommodation. Despite this culture clash, I did not expect the ending.

I had no knowledge of what Nigerian tribal life was like, so reading about their lives was very enlightening. Also, coming from a Euro-American-centric background, it was eye-opening to see the European invasion of Africa from the point of view of the natives. I understand why this book is so highly recommended. I liked it a lot, and I'm glad I finally read it.

Editado: Out 28, 9:15 pm

32. And the mountains echoed by Khaled Hosseini

And the mountains echoed is this month's book for my RL book club. I've decided I need to go ahead and write up my thoughts about this book first, although I read Things fall apart first, because we'll be discussing this one tomorrow, and I'll have to return the book at that time, and I won't have it to refer to after tomorrow afternoon. I don't think I've got time to write about more than one today.

This seems to be my month to read about different cultures. When I started reading And the mountains echoed, it really struck me how I was reading another book about a culture I knew nothing about, and so different from my own culture, right on the heels of reading Things fall apart. However, parts of this book are set in western cultures of Europe and America, so it's not as far removed from my own culture as Things fall apart. I was also very surprised to see in the story that was set in Kabul of the 1940's just how westernized Kabul was at that time. I did not expect that. Kabul then seems almost as far removed from the culture of rural Afghanistan that begins the novel as my own culture is.

And the mountains echoed starts in Afghanistan in 1952, when a poor farmer sells his daughter to a wealthy, childless couple in Kabul. It really jumps around, giving us multiple points of view from different people in different places and times, although their stories are interrelated. Some of the stories are more intertwined with the main story, and others less so. In most of the stories, the relationships between the children and their parents was strained. Only in the last couple of stories told in the book was there something more positive in the parent-child relationships. I was glad that the book ended with the more positive relationships. The story of Idris and Timur that shows up in the middle of the book is one of the more peripheral stories, but that one hit me hard. Their families had fled Kabul in the 1980's when all the fighting broke out, and they had settled in America. Timur had become wealthy but behaved like a jerk, Idris was a doctor and not as rich but seemed to have a bigger heart. They returned to Kabul in 2003 to try to recover their family's property, but they also visited a hospital where they met a young girl badly hurt during the fighting. Idris visits her multiple times and intends to help her on his return to the US, but once he's back home he gets caught up in life there and never pursues the promised help. It's the jerk Timur who actually pays for the surgery that the girl needs. This was the story that really shocked me, and I struggled with the meaning of it.

Overall, I'm still not sure how I feel about the book. I found all the stories interesting, and the writing was captivating. But most of the stories were also hard and the characters very complex, as they are in real life. Many of them were difficult to relate to. I just have a very mixed reaction to the book, and I'm not sure how I feel about it. At the moment, I'm giving it 3.75 stars, because I think it was better than just "good", but I didn't like it as well as the books I've given 4 stars.

3.75 stars

Out 24, 6:54 am

Welcome back, Irene.

I'm glad the visit went well, your MiL is doing better, and that your SiL/BiL got a good little vacation out of your visit.

Be in touch when you want me to drive out your way for a meet up that actually allows us to chat a bit.

Out 24, 4:19 pm

>60 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen, I appreciate the kind thoughts! It's going to take me a bit to settle back in. We're pretty exhausted after the trip, and we've got a lot to catch up on around the house. I'll let you know whenever I figure out what would be a good time. I would definitely like to meet!

Editado: Out 27, 11:25 pm

33. The Island of Lost Maps: a True Story of Cartographic Crime by Miles Harvey.

I started this book while we were on our trip. I would have finished it sooner, but two days of driving and things we had to take care of after we got home delayed me. I read it for the October Nonfiction challenge: Crimes, Mysteries, Puzzles, Enigmas. It's a book I had actually pulled to read at the beginning of this year, but that was before I got back onto LT. When I did find LT again, I started reading books that fit the various challenges I found here, and this one didn't fit any of them--until now.

The impetus for the writing of this book was a news story about a man, Gilbert Bland, who was caught stealing maps from the Peabody Library in 1995. As it turned out, this was the tip of the iceberg, as he had already hit many other libraries. Miles Harvey became fascinated by the story and tried to learn more about it. This book is the result of his research.

Unfortunately, Harvey was never able to interview Bland to learn more about his life and his motives, because Bland just did not want to talk to anyone. But Harvey does delve deeply into the world of maps. He gives us a detailed history of maps and map making, the recent surge in interest in collecting maps leading to big increases in price, and a history of map theft, which is apparently a very long-standing tradition. As it turns out, maps were often state secrets, heavily guarded, and objects for theft by other countries.

Call me obsessed, but the more I looked into map theft, the more I found it lurking behind the scenes during key moments of our collective past. And I'm not talking about small moments either--unless you consider Columbus's voyage to America small or Magellan's circumnavigation of the globe small or the invasion of Normandy small. I started to think the historians had overlooked something important in their eternal search for those "hidden hands" that guide the course of human events. I kept coming upon hidden hands myself, all of them holding hot maps. It was not that I presumed to have hit on the answer to all of life's mysteries, a Unified Theory of the Missing Map. It was just that I began to see Gilbert Bland as heir to an ancient though hardly noble tradition, one that has shaped our world more than we know.

Harvey also looks into the problem of theft from libraries. He spoke to several librarians and saw the damage that had been done to rare and valuable books mutilated by the thief. Since he was never able to speak to Bland, he investigates the public records of the man, tracing his history in the army and previous run-ins with the law. He also spoke to map dealers and collectors, to understand the passion for collecting maps. He interviewed psychologists who have studied the psychology of collecting. And he spoke to the FBI who had recovered a lot of the stolen maps and were attempting to return them to the libraries where they belonged--a difficult task, as it turned out. In the end, Harvey learns more about himself than he does about Bland.

I found this to be a fascinating tale, and the history of maps and map theft was just as fascinating. This book might not be everyone's cup of tea, but I certainly recommend it to anyone who has an interest in maps.

Out 27, 1:36 pm

Before I let it go, here is one more quote I really liked from The Island of Lost Maps. At this point, Harvey has gone to Hillsborough, NC, where Bland is being held in jail to face charges from the state of NC related to his theft at UNC Chapel Hill. Harvey is driving down I-85, which happens to follow the route of the Great Indian Trading Path, and which passes through Hillsborough. This path had been recorded on an old map of Carolina (by Ogilby and Moxon), one of the maps he had seen in the FBI's collection of recovered maps. That map had shown an Indian village where Hillsborough is now. One of the first Europeans to visit the area was John Lederer. Harvey notes:

When the adventurer John Lederer had rambled down the Great Indian Trading Path in 1670, for instance, he was not just sight-seeing. Working under the auspices of Virginia's governor, Lederer was at the vanguard of a systematic effort to appropriate land--an effort in which maps often played as big a role as guns.

Even the map that had brought me here was made with pilferage in mind. Ogilby and Moxon's work was used as an advertisement to attract English settlers to the new province... With the power to manipulate the land from afar--to hype it up, slice it up, divvy it up--the Ogilby-Moxon map gave colonizers a tool of theft every bit as sharp-edged and efficient as Gilbert Bland's razor blade. Indeed, it now occurred to me that not only did this one small document encapsulate the whole long saga of New World exploitation, but that when Bland laid his hands on it, he was reenacting that story in a very poignant way. His victims had almost the same relationship to their maps as the people of this site had to their land. For librarian and Indian alike, these were "sacred and not ownable" resources--a lovely ideal, which, like most lovely ideals, proved easy to exploit.

Out 30, 7:24 am

Nice to see you back. Hope everything went well

Out 30, 8:50 am

>56 atozgrl: That's good news.

>62 atozgrl: Intriguing.

Out 30, 8:30 pm

>64 figsfromthistle: >65 humouress: Thanks so much for your good wishes! Things went well overall, though I did come down with a case of poison ivy after helping with some yard work. However, I was extremely tired when we got home, and it's taken me all week to recover.

I haven't gotten back around to your threads yet. It's taking me a while. I may have to put the line in the sand and just start over wherever you have gotten to.

Out 31, 6:22 am

Here's the line in the sand. berly posted it on one of your earlier threads in June, and I shamelessly stole it and have used it in recent months.

Out 31, 8:03 am

Morning, Irene. Just checking in. Cold here today with a little snow too. Boo!! I have still not read And the mountains echoed, despite loving his first 2 novels. Your mixed response may be one of the reasons, I have not got to it.

Out 31, 12:08 pm

>67 karenmarie: Thanks Karen. Yes, I saw that, and I have seen others using it as well. I will have to steal it for myself! I hope to finally make it over to your thread later today. I've been visiting threads with fewer unread messages first, which makes yours and Mark's even harder to get to. I hope not to have to use the line in the sand on yours, but I definitely will when I finally get back to Paul's.

>68 msf59: Hello Mark! The other folks in the book club discussion group were saying it wasn't Hosseini's best book, so I'll have to try to get to his others. I've heard a lot about The Kite Runner and I wasn't quite sure I wanted to go read it after this one, but their words led me to think I still should.

Snow already! We were 85 yesterday, today it's currently 50 and drizzly. Rain and drizzle is supposed to continue this afternoon into this evening. Temperatures are also supposed to continue dropping all day, and there's a breeze. Not a great day for trick-or-treating. I don't know how many trick-or-treaters we'll get tonight. The forecast has us getting down to freezing Wednesday and Thursday night (or Thursday and Friday morning, actually). I'll have to bring my herbs inside.

I hope to finally get back over to your thread today.

Out 31, 12:10 pm

Another guessy-guessy Wordle today. It's frustrating to get 3 letters early but then have so many different words that fit.

Wordle 864 5/6


Nov 1, 11:39 am

>70 atozgrl: But you are playing “hard mode” which Wordle Settings defines as “Any revealed hints must be used in subsequent guesses.”
I generally try to play hard mode, but I don’t enforce it 8>)

So, kudos to you for getting a 5 on such a guessy-guessy situation!

Karen O

Nov 1, 4:58 pm

>71 klobrien2: Hello, Karen, good to see you here! I hadn't heard of "hard mode" before. I guess I was in hard mode today. I don't always play it that way.

Back to normal today. It could have turned into another guessy day.
Wordle 865 4/6


I'm getting back into Connections too.

Puzzle #143

Editado: Nov 4, 6:39 pm

34. The Cubs way : the Zen of building the best team in baseball and breaking the curse by Tom Verducci

Finally got back over to my own thread, to report on the last book I read. Somehow I came across the RandomKIT for October: Treats, not tricks. That sounded like fun, so I thought I would try to read something for that challenge if I had time in October. Since I finished all my other reads for the month and there were several days left, I decided to pick up The Cubs Way for that challenge. It's a treat for me, because as a life-long Cubs fan, it was a thrill to finally see them win the World Series. I had bought the book back when it was published, but somehow never got around to reading it until now, so there was also the impetus to finish another ROOT. And it also fit because the baseball playoffs were in progress. I thought I might be able to finish it by the 31st, but didn't quite make it. I was certain I would finish by Nov. 1, but got too busy that day. I finally did finish it on Nov. 2, coincidentally the 7th anniversary of Game 7 in 2016, which was fitting.

The book tells the story of how the 2016 Cubs were built, describes their season, and retells the classic World Series. Although I had already heard many of the stories in the book, it's great to have everything collected in one place, and serves as a wonderful memorial to that season. I did learn a few new things, however. For one, I don't believe I had ever heard that Kris Bryant was suffering cramps throughout game 7.

The thing that surprised me was that Verducci picked Addison Russell as one of the Cubs' core four. I don't think I ever really thought of him as one of the core four, and I did always think of Javy Baez as one of the core, but Verducci left him out of that group. I think we all thought of Russell as a high character person at the time the book came out, but of course subsequent events revealed serious off-field issues. On-field he never showed the continued growth as a player that we expected. So the book's highlighting of Russell was the one sour note I found. Without that I'd have given it 5 stars. Overall the book is a wonderful way to remember the greatest Cubs season in my lifetime.

Nov 5, 11:51 am

Finally back to Wordle in 3.

Wordle 869 3/6

SLATE, ROBIN, FLARE There were too many possibilities, so I decided to go back to my default second word to either find or eliminate some letters.

Nov 6, 2:44 pm

What the h....? The Cubs just hired Craig Counsell? When they already had a manager?

I saw the news come across that the Mets had hired Carlos Mendoza as their manager, so I thought Counsell was probably going back to Milwaukee, so I went to the Bleacher Nation blog to see what their thoughts might be, and I see a couple of headlines saying the Cubs were signing Counsell. What?!?

The last time I had this kind of reaction to baseball news was spring training 2016 when multiple news outlets had reported Dexter Fowler was signing with the Orioles. Two days later I took my morning break at work and looked online, and saw headlines saying Fowler was returning to the Cubs. I literally thought it was an April Fool's joke, but John Arguello at Cubs Den was there in person and had seen Fowler walk out on the field, so it had to be true. (Good thing too; I don't see the Cubs winning the World Series without him.)

I am stunned!

Nov 7, 5:27 pm

Back to the standard 4 today.

Wordle 871 4/6



Puzzle #149

Nov 7, 5:59 pm

Happy Tuesday, Irene. I hope you get to The Kite Runner and his next novel. Both were excellent. I also thought The Cubs Way was amazing and I completely agree with you about Addison Russell. WTH? They got the rest of the players right, though.

I will miss Ross but I am hoping from a big spark from Counsell.

Editado: Nov 7, 6:56 pm

Stopping by to say hi, Irene. I also enjoyed The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Sunssome years ago. I hope you do too, when you can bookhorn it in.

Nov 7, 9:20 pm

>78 vancouverdeb: Thanks for stopping by Deborah! I will definitely have to add those two to my TBR list. It seems that most people like those books, while more are ambivalent about And the mountains echoed.

Nov 7, 9:21 pm

>77 msf59: Hello Mark, glad to see you here. I already commented more about Counsell over on your thread. It looks like it's going to be an interesting offseason.

Nov 9, 2:46 pm

Not even trying to catch up, Irene, but just dropping by to say "Hello!" I hope you have a wonderful day!

Nov 10, 5:02 pm

Thanks for visiting, Stasia, I'm so glad to see you here! I hope you also have a wonderful day--and weekend!

Editado: Nov 10, 5:09 pm

Wordle 874 2/6


Also a good day for Connections

Puzzle #152
I had to eliminate some options first before choosing which ones were included in the easiest (yellow) group.

Nov 12, 10:41 pm

Wordle 876 3/6

SLATE, TEARY, MEANT I should have had this one in 2. I thought of what turned out to be the right word immediately, but decided I wanted to try a different word, something that started with T first. This is not the first time I out-thought myself.

Puzzle #154

Nov 12, 11:00 pm

>66 atozgrl: >67 karenmarie: Hi, hi! Not drawing any lines in the sand here -- I am all caught up again. (Thanks for the shoutout Karenmarie.) : ) Glad you are enjoying your books and not stressing about the numbers. Or your Wordle. Or Connections. LOL

Nov 14, 5:12 pm

>85 Berly: Hi Kim, I'm glad to see you here! Thanks for visiting. I'm trying not to stress about anything these days. :-)

Nov 14, 11:57 pm

Wordle 878 5/6

SLATE, SCRAM, SANDY, GROUP, SASSYAfter my third guess, I saw enough possible options that I had to put in a word to either identify or eliminate some letters.

Puzzle #156

Nov 15, 9:38 pm

Stopping by to say hi. I am quite sure it took me 5/6 on Wordle yesterday and Connections was sure challenging for me!

Nov 15, 9:46 pm

>88 vancouverdeb: Hello Deborah! Nice to see you. I never know with Connections. Some days I am just completely unfamiliar with whatever one or more of the groupings relate to. And sometimes the puzzle isn't too hard for me. Today's Connections, I saw one of the patterns immediately, but the problem was there were more than 4 possible options that fit the pattern, and one of them I missed completely at first, even though I knew it. But I eventually got them.

Puzzle #157

Wordle 879 3/6


Nov 16, 10:06 am

Sweet Thursday, Irene. Have a lovely lunch with Karen today. Give her a hug for me, will ya?

Nov 16, 10:47 am

>90 msf59: Hello Mark, so nice to see you. I will do so!

And we're back to 5 on Wordle today.
Wordle 880 5/6

SLATE, FIRST, ROOST, TRYST, TRUST - don't know why I thought of TRYST before the more obvious TRUST

Editado: Nov 28, 9:16 pm

35. An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz

I read An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz this month for the November Reading Through Time challenge. This book gives a history of the United States from the point of view of the indigenous people who were here when the Europeans arrived. In spite of being aware of how badly Europeans and colonial settlers treated the natives and how many treaties were made and broken, it is still shocking to have it recounted so completely. It is truly worse than we like to think. Dunbar-Ortiz argues that it was deliberate policy of the US, and that the current US military is still greatly influenced by the style of warfare used against the indigenous nations and that it still employs that style of warfare today.

There are some concerns I have with this book. ArlieS tried to read it a few months ago, but abandoned it. I went back to look at what she wrote after I had started the book. I thought Arlie had said something about the population figures quoted at the beginning of the book, but I couldn't find that again. However, checking online does seem to indicate that Dunbar-Ortiz overstates the total pre-Columbian population of the Americas and appears to understate the concurrent population of Europe. Arlie did take issue with maize being separately domesticated in multiple locations in the Americas at the same time. When I saw that, I had to go back and re-read that section of the book. I did not read what Dunbar-Ortiz wrote as meaning that it was separately domesticated at the same time in multiple locations, especially since a few pages later she says that maize was first cultivated by the Mayans and it spread both south and north from there, but I can see why Arlie might have read it that way. Dunbar-Ortiz probably should have been more clear in her wording.

Arlie also takes note of Dunbar-Ortiz' discussion of the "sacred covenant" basis of the United States, Israel, and South Africa but Arlie thought this was probably metaphorical. I'm not so sure. I can't speak to Israel or South Africa, but I have read writings of Americans on the religious right who do in fact believe that the US has a covenantal relationship with God, like ancient Israel. These people do tend to see certain important documents in US history as being sacred.

Arlie is dead on when she notes that Dunbar-Ortiz makes "footnote-free statements that aren't common knowledge." There were plenty of things stated in the book as fact that I would have liked to check, but there were no footnotes so there was no way to check further. There are in fact plenty of footnotes throughout the book as well as a bibliography, but some things are stated as fact without a source being noted, and this is frustrating. Some examples:
From the eleventh through the thirteenth centuries, Europeans conducted the Crusades to conquer North Africa and the Middle East, leading to unprecedented wealth in the hands of a few.

[Discussing the follow-up to the Civil War]: ... the US government eventually allowed the defeated southern elite to return to their locally powerful positions, and ... [they] soon gained national political power. The powerful white supremacist southern ruling class helped further militarize the United States, the army practically becoming a southern institution.

During the Civil War, most famously in the siege of Atlanta, [Sherman] made his mark as a proponent and practitioner of total war, scorched-earth campaigns against civilians, particularly targeting their food supplies. This had long been the colonial and US American way of war against the Indigenous peoples east of the Mississippi. ... This dichotomy of training the US military for standard European warfare but also training it in colonial counterinsurgency methods continues in the twenty-first century.

The third sentence in the last quote is the one I had questions about. All three of these statements could be debatable or could be true, but there are no footnotes to track down sources for follow-up.

There were too many things stated in the book to fact check it all, but a couple of things caught my attention. One is the discussions of scalping. Dunbar-Ortiz points out that there were many instances of colonial and post-revolution governments offering bounties for the scalps of indigenous people. This is a fact that is mostly overlooked in teaching the history of the US, and it is important to bring it out. However, Dunbar-Ortiz claims that the English started that practice when they invaded Ireland, and the Scots/Irish brought the practice to the Americas with them. She says nothing about natives and scalping, implying that it was started by the invading Europeans. However, a quick online search brings up evidence to dispute this position. I found several articles to contradict this. Wikipedia claims it was a practice developed in multiple places around the world, including ancient Europe and pre-Columbian Americas.

Likewise, Dunbar-Ortiz claims that the term redskin comes from the practice of scalping and that the settlers called the mutilated and bloody corpses that they left behind "redskins." On checking, this claim has been stated by other people, but it also appears to be completely untrue. Back in 2005 a scholar at the Smithsonian published a paper tracing the origin of the word, and there was apparently a surprising amount of material available to find the origin. The first appearance was among tribes living in the Illinois region, and the first written appearance was in French, by the French living in the area. It eventually spread further and was popularized in James Fenimore Cooper's novels. It was not originally considered a pejorative term, but that changed by the end of the 19th century. It is obviously considered obnoxious now, and we should not be using the term. But Dunbar-Ortiz' claim about its origins is not accurate. (For more, see . And you can find a lot more with a search online.)

Overall, this is a difficult book to rate. I firmly believe it was worthwhile to read, because those of us living in white America need to face up to the history of European settlement of the Americas and the terrible damage that was done to the inhabitants of the lands that were taken. The unsparing, in-your-face nature of the book is sometimes difficult, but also valuable. It's a useful correction to the incomplete history we were taught in school. Unfortunately, Dunbar-Ortiz has enough questionable statements in the book to make me question how many other things are presented as fact but are not that I missed. Finally, I'm giving it 3.5 stars, but wish I could give it more.

Nov 16, 11:55 am

>92 atozgrl: I had put that one into the BlackHole, but am seriously rethinking that. "Some things are stated as fact without a source being noted, and this is frustrating" would drive me up a tree! Thanks for your thoughts on the book, Irene.

Nov 16, 12:32 pm

>93 alcottacre: Hi Stasia, you got me in the middle of writing up my thoughts. I decided I needed to save what I had written so far, so I wouldn't lose it, but I've added more since you saw it. I do think it's worth reading, because we need to see the viewpoint of the people whose lands our ancestors took--stole is probably more accurate. But you do have to be careful while reading the book not to take everything she says as gospel.

Nov 16, 12:35 pm

>94 atozgrl: Noted, Irene. Thank you!

Nov 16, 7:24 pm

>92 atozgrl: Spot-on, well said, and amply sourced review, Irene. Your rating and reasoning for it are also very trenchant and persuasive. Thank you for this gift of clarification.

Nov 16, 10:08 pm

>96 richardderus: How kind of you, Richard! And how nice to see you here! I need to finally make my way over to your thread and say hello. The way your threads fly by has been a bit intimidating, so I haven't gotten there yet. I was just about to at one point a couple of months back, but life got busy for me and I wasn't able to manage it then, but it's about time that I did!

Nov 16, 10:30 pm

We had an eventful day today. We discovered recently that we needed to replace the toilet in the upstairs bath. It had become unstable, and I think the builders didn't install it correctly. In any case, we had recently had a plumber come out for a different task, and my DH contacted him about the toilet. He recommended replacing it, so we purchased a new one, and the plumber came out today to install it. He called yesterday to say his day today was turning out to be very busy, and he asked if he could come earlier than originally scheduled. He wanted to be here at 8:00, so I had to plan to get up early today. I'm not usually an early bird. But you have to go through the master bedroom to get to the master bath, so I had no choice. The plumber was prompt and we now have a new toilet. We got a taller model (but not the tallest) since we're getting older, and it has soft-closing seat and lid, so they don't make a loud bang if you accidentally drop them.

Then karenmarie came out my way and I met her for lunch at Longhorn Steakhouse. We had a delightful meal and conversation! I am so glad to have met another LT-er in person! >90 msf59: And Mark, we shared a nice hug.

And I also managed to get my thoughts about An Indigenous Peoples' History of the United States written up, so all in all a very good day!

Nov 17, 9:09 am

Happy Friday, Irene. Glad you had a nice visit with Karen. I LOVE meeting LTers.

Nov 17, 10:47 am

>97 atozgrl: Happy Friday, Irene! We've passed in proximity for some time, and seeing that you reviewed >92 atozgrl: after Arlie brought it to my and your attention, it seemed like the time to pay a visit.

I'll be setting up a new thread later today so permaybehaps that'll be the moment to come see me at mine.

Wonderful weekend-ahead's reads!

Nov 17, 10:51 am

Hi Irene!

>92 atozgrl: Excellent review - you briefly mentioned a few of your points at our lunch yesterday, but this review is Above and Beyond. Congrats. I have the book, too, currently in the black hold of TBR land.

And I totally agree about our delightful meal and conversation. Definitely more meet ups.

Nov 17, 12:01 pm

>100 richardderus: Thanks, Richard, I will do so! Wishing you great weekend reads as well!

Nov 17, 12:02 pm

>101 karenmarie: Thank you, Karen! I think the book is worth the read, despite its flaws.

I look forward to our next one!

Nov 17, 12:06 pm

>99 msf59: Happy Friday to you too, Mark. Meeting LTers is fun! I hope I'll have the chance to do more of it.

Editado: Nov 17, 12:20 pm

It's been a busy week with something going on every day, so I'm a bit tired and moving slowly this morning. We have a seminar on prayer at our church this evening and tomorrow morning, so I'll be busy again later in the day, but unlike the rest of the week, the morning is quiet today, so I can take my time. I am grateful for that.

I need to start getting ready for Thanksgiving. I've got to inventory what I have on hand and see what I need to purchase. Somehow, I'm not yet mentally ready for the Thanksgiving meal cooking this year.

Wordle 881 3/6


I also made it back over to Connections today.

Puzzle #159

Nov 17, 12:21 pm

Hope you're having the nice quiet morning you envisioned and sounds like you had a good day yesterday as well. It is fun meeting other 75'ers isn't it?

Nov 17, 12:45 pm

Happy Friday, Irene!

>98 atozgrl: How nice you met Karen for lunch. LT meet-ups are the best.

Nov 18, 5:54 pm

>106 RebaRelishesReading: >107 FAMeulstee: LT meet-ups are the best, aren't they!

Friday morning was slow and restful, but we were busy the rest of the day. We needed to go shopping for a replacement for a simple recliner that we have. It's getting old, the leather on the front of the arms is worn, and the swivel base is breaking down, so it needs to be replaced. We're looking at a much more substantial La-Z-Boy.

Last night and this morning we attended the seminar at our church. I think it will be helpful for us. It did mean getting up early for me, since we needed to be at the church around 8:00 this morning. I tried doing some reading this afternoon, but had to fight the urge to nod off.

Back to the usual with Wordle today.

Wordle 882 4/6


Puzzle #160

Nov 18, 6:01 pm

>98 atozgrl: Being so far away from most of our pals, meet-ups do make me a bit jealous! Hopefully one day soon, Irene, I will manage to get back Stateside and meet-up with so many of my pals there.

Nov 18, 6:14 pm

>109 PaulCranswick: I hope you can do that, Paul! We'd certainly love to see you here in central North Carolina.

Wishing you a good weekend of reading!

Nov 19, 1:37 pm

>92 atozgrl: I'm glad you liked it, and this is a great example of how different people react to the same book.

I know that to many Americans of settler background, the only "good Indian" was a "dead Indian"; I still see the same today with others regarded as "not us" and at the same time potentially dangerous to those who are seen as being "us". I don't want to spend time reading the gory details; too depressing, and also a bit frightening, since I'm surely "not us" to some people of similar opinions. But other people, such as you value being aware of the details, or simply don't think they really understand how bad it got.

FWIW, I'm also aware that individuals of settler background had a whole constellation of attitudes towards those of native background, leading to the schizophrenic behaviours displayed. Plenty of the people negotiating these treaties probably were quite sincere. (We see the same in the treatment of black people, and members of just about any commonly oppressed group.)

Thus there's a whole lot of confusing data, but the net effect from the POV of non-white people in the US is likely to be the impression that neither the American government, nor white Americans in general, can ever be trusted. You never know when they'll turn on you once again.

I see less of that from privileged non-whites - many of them seem to see themselves as safely assimilated - unless or until something happens that leaves them thinking "this could happen to me"; some acquaintances had this experience after the murder of George Floyd. But OTOH, there are also a lot of concerns that are rarely mentioned to outsiders - e.g. random white people like me.

But I'm rambling, and far from the book we started with.

I do wish Dunbar-Ortiz had been more careful with her facts, but I know I'm more fanatical about that than most people. And to be fair, it doesn't mater whether a given myth ever really happened, if lots of people act today based on believing it. Whenever an author states something unfootnoted, it probably is something they think that "everyone knows", and it would turn out to be commonly believed in their environment.

Nov 19, 10:23 pm

>111 ArlieS: Thank you for your thoughts, Arlie, that's very well said. I well understand how Dunbar-Ortiz playing fast and loose with her facts could be a real turn off, to you and others as well. For me, despite those problems, the book was useful to see the history of our country from a completely different point of view. They say the victors write the history, which is certainly as much true in the US as elsewhere, and I thought it was very valuable to see our history from the other side. It was painful in many ways, but also eye-opening. Just as Trump running for office in 2015/16 opened my eyes to just how much racism was still alive and well in this country. I've become much more aware of how much blacks still have to suffer in this country, and I think a lot of people have. But this book opens my eyes to just how much the indigenous people suffered, and I think that's a tale that most white Americans have buried or just simply are not aware of. We're aware of it in a surface way, but this book forces us to face it much more directly. I very much understand your not wanting to read the gory details, but for me, it helped to really bring home just how bad it was. I don't know if I would say that I "like" the book; like doesn't seem to be the right word. It was painful to read, but I do think it was important, for the reasons I just mentioned. I would like to see more of white America facing up to these issues, and that's why I think the book is worthwhile.

And to be fair, it doesn't mater whether a given myth ever really happened, if lots of people act today based on believing it. Whenever an author states something unfootnoted, it probably is something they think that "everyone knows", and it would turn out to be commonly believed in their environment. That is very well said, and I think you are right about that.

Thanks for the discussion about this book. It's very true that not every book is for everyone. There may be another book out there that deals with this subject that would be better suited to you.

Nov 19, 10:51 pm

Tricky Wordle today; I felt good that I got it in 4.

Wordle 883 4/6


Puzzle #161

Nov 20, 12:28 am

I'm glad you enjoyed your meet up with Karen so much, Irene. Sorry about the needing to replace your toilet, but glad it is done. I hope you enjoy the puzzle I am doing , when you get a chance. I've been doing it quite slowly because I've been rather busy too. Just walking the dog, visiting family , organizing and ordering some Christmas gifts.

Nov 20, 9:53 pm

>114 vancouverdeb: I had a great lunch, with Karen, thanks! It's a busy time of year, there's always so much going on, here too. I'm trying to get ready for Thanksgiving, but we may be doing ours on Friday. A friend at church is going to be alone on Thanksgiving day, since his sister is unable to come down here as originally expected, so it looks like we'll be taking him out to lunch. It's too last minute for us to both get the downstairs organized and fix a big meal. I got some grocery shopping done today, with trips to two different stores.

I hope you have some time for yourself! And finding time for some good reading!

Nov 20, 9:55 pm

Wordle 884 4/6


Puzzle #162

Nov 20, 9:56 pm

Glad you had fun at the meet up. Good luck with Thanksgiving prep.

Nov 21, 4:52 pm

Thanks, Anita! I popped over to your thread to say hi.

Nov 21, 4:54 pm

Another good puzzling day. This can't last.

Wordle 885 3/6


Puzzle #163

Nov 21, 5:36 pm

Happy week-ahead's reads, Irene! *smooch*

Nov 22, 9:52 am

>120 richardderus: Thank you Richard, and the same to you! *smooch*

Nov 22, 9:54 am

I was right. It didn't last.

Wordle 886 6/6


Puzzle #164

Nov 22, 7:25 pm

Dear Irene,

Happy Thanksgiving from an appreciative non-celebrator.

Nov 23, 9:05 am

>123 PaulCranswick: Thank you Paul! I hope you have a great day, even without the celebration!

Nov 23, 9:06 am

A good start today.

Wordle 887 4/6


Puzzle #165

Nov 23, 9:35 am

Cheers for a lovely day of feasting and reading, Irene!

Nov 23, 5:24 pm

>126 richardderus: Thank you very much, Richard, and the same to you!

Nov 23, 6:53 pm

Happy Thanksgiving, Irene! I'm so glad that you and Karen are meeting up and enjoying each others company so much. LT is a great place, even if we don't always have time to get to every thread.

Nov 24, 6:45 pm

>128 vancouverdeb: Thank you, Deborah! I hope you are having a great week! LT is indeed a great place. I can't keep up with all the threads, but I try to visit as much as I can.

Nov 24, 6:48 pm

I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, Irene!

>129 atozgrl: There was a time, many eons ago, when I did keep up with all the threads. I think it is physically impossible for a person to do so now. . .

Editado: Nov 25, 8:50 pm

As expected, we took our friend, who would otherwise have been alone on the holiday, out to lunch yesterday. We had planned to go to Cracker Barrel which we knew does a nice Thanksgiving meal every year. It's been many years since we have taken advantage of this, and they've got an app now. My DH signed in, and we were told it would be about 90 minutes. That gave us plenty of time to drive into Raleigh to pick up our friend, and then head out to Morrisville to Cracker Barrel. We got in a slow-moving line to check in. We got checked in, but instead of the approx. 20 minutes it should have been by then for us to get seated, it was going to be 2-3 hours. It seems they weren't going by when people signed in online? Not sure what the deal was. We went outside to wait, and an older lady and her son were next to us. He told us they had been coming for several years, and something was different about the process this year, and it wasn't working. Apparently it was very smooth previously. He wound up calling over to Texas Roadhouse, which was across the street and open. They left. After waiting a little bit, my DH called them as well. There was no wait at that time, so we decided to eat lunch there as well. There was a short line when we arrived, but we didn't have to wait long to be seated. They gave us a standard menu, but it turned out they were serving a traditional Thanksgiving meal as well, with choice of turkey or ham. So we took the Thanksgiving meal, and we were served pretty quickly. Pecan pie for dessert, and it came with an unexpected, very large, scoop of ice cream.

That means that today was my day to make the Thanksgiving meal. We were planning a small one, just a turkey breast since it's just the two of us. I made stuffing, green bean casserole, and sweet potato casserole. I make my family's traditional stuffing, which is a bread stuffing with oysters. It's the best part. So today was the busy day, with the cooking and the cleanup. But we now have turkey leftovers for sandwiches for a few days. That may have been my father's favorite part--the turkey sandwiches for the next week.

We will be having some leftovers for a smaller dinner tonight. We've also got an apple pie for dessert, which we haven't touched yet. I didn't have to make that. Our financial advisor sends us one for Thanksgiving every year, which saves me some work.

I hope all my American friends here are having a great holiday!

Nov 25, 10:01 am

>131 atozgrl: What a fiasco at Cracker Barrel! I'm glad the alternative was close by and conveniently what you needed and wanted, Irene. Your traditional meal sounds lovely, and the stuffing earns my earnest envy...our famly ate eggplant-oyster casserole every turkey day, as well as cornbread stuffing and dressing. I've always associated the holiday with shellfish, which is certainly never going to be on the menu at this kosher facility. :-(

Enjoy your dagwood day!

Nov 25, 11:41 am

Hi Irene!

>131 atozgrl: Yikes to the Cracker Barrel tale of woe, glad you were able to go to the Texas Roadhouse instead. And yay for your Thanksgiving meal a day later and leftovers.

Editado: Nov 25, 9:30 pm

>132 richardderus: Thank you, Richard! I haven't heard of eggplant-oyster casserole before. I'm going to have to look that one up. I've never really learned to like the cornbread based stuffing that seems to be the standard here in the south. We were very fortunate that there was an alternative option nearby, since Cracker Barrel wasn't working.

>133 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen! We're enjoying the leftover turkey, we had sandwiches for lunch today.

Wishing you both a great weekend!

Nov 25, 11:10 pm

Wordle 889 4/6


Puzzle #167

Nov 26, 11:26 pm

Wordle 890 3/6


Puzzle #168
For the first time in a long time, Connections was easy for me today. And I even saw what the purple group was right away.

Editado: Nov 27, 8:30 pm

36. Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline

I was reading The Language of Science and Faith, which is not especially long, but it turned out to be a slower read than I expected because of some of the density of the concepts covered. I realized last week that I had better pause my reading of that book and start Orphan Train, since I need to finish it for my book club which meets on Tuesday. With all the activities around Thanksgiving, I thought my reading time might be limited, so I needed to do something I don't normally do, and have two books going at one time. Fortunately, The Language of Science and Faith is something that you can pause and pick up again later.

Orphan Train is a novel based on a historical movement that I was not aware of. Orphans and homeless children in big eastern cities were taken in by charitable institutions and then sent by train to foster homes in midwestern towns or rural areas. Unfortunately, the children were often used as farm laborers or other workers. The novel tells the story of one girl whose family had immigrated to New York from Ireland. She is orphaned and taken in by the Children's Aid Society, and sent on one of the orphan trains to Minnesota. Her experiences there make up the heart of the book. There is also a contemporary story about another girl in foster care in Maine. The two stories intertwine, and we come to see similarities in the stories of the two girls.

Of all the fiction books I've read for my book club this year, this one is my favorite. Oddly, the last several books we read have all had stories that jumped around in time and included both historical events and a story set in the current time period. But Orphan Train really drew me in, and I cared about the characters. I enjoyed it very much.

Nov 27, 8:36 pm

Wordle 891 5/6


Puzzle #169

Nov 27, 9:03 pm

>131 atozgrl: Sounds like you had a great Thanksgiving! It was a good idea to go to another restaurant. A two hour wait time seems way too long.

I have not heard of stuffing with oysters....Stuffing is always the first thing that I put on my plate and needless to say there is none left to go wth the turkey leftovers the next day.

Nov 27, 10:56 pm

>139 figsfromthistle: Hello Anita! The oyster stuffing was my family's tradition. My father grew up in New Orleans, and I think it probably came from his family.

Nov 28, 8:25 pm

Since I didn't have to cook on Thanksgiving day, I checked Amazon for sales that morning. Lo and behold, the Kindles were finally on sale, so I went ahead and ordered a Paperwhite. I don't have an e-reader, and decided I finally needed to get one. I've already got a few ebooks and have been reading them on my laptop with the Kindle app, but I really needed a dedicated reader. I also ordered a few (print) books with the sale that was going on, of course, since I was ordering anyway. The main shipment, including the Paperwhite, arrived today. I've got it set up, and I'll have to learn all the features. We'll see if I can adjust to reading on a small screen. I'm sure I'll continue to prefer print, but I need the e-reader for the ebooks I've got and for taking more books with me on trips.

Wordle 892 4/6

SLATE, ROBIN, SPOKE, SCOPE. I wanted to use SPICE for my second word, but decided there were too many possibilities, so I went with my usual second word to be safe and either eliminate or identify additional letters. I probably would have gotten it in 3 if I had used SPICE, but it would have been risky.

Nov 29, 5:10 am

I enjoyed Orphan Train some years ago . I hope you enjoy your new Paperwhite. I have an older Kindle. I prefer paper books too, but a kindle can come in quite handy.

Nov 29, 7:25 am

Happy Wednesday, Irene. Thanks for keeping my thread warm while I was offline. Congrats on the Paperwhite. I LOVE mine, although I am due a new one. Probably next year. Enjoy!

It has been cold here the last couple of days- only in the 20s but we rebound a bit today, back to the 40s. It will feel good.

Nov 29, 10:22 pm

>142 vancouverdeb: Thanks, Deborah. In our book club discussion, most seemed to like Orphan Train, although some people thought parts of it were too contrived. None of that bothered me with this book, although one event in particular did surprise me. I'm glad to know you enjoyed it too.

There was one book I wanted to get, but it was only available as an ebook now; seemed to be out of print in hard copy, so I had to buy the ebook earlier this year. Then I've gotten a few Early Reviewer books from LT this year, all ebooks. So I decided I really needed to get an e-reader. It will make it easier to take more books with me on trips.

Nov 29, 10:29 pm

>143 msf59: Hello, Mark. You can see what I told Deborah about why I went ahead and got the Paperwhite. I haven't had time to play with it today, but hope to do so in the next few days. I'm glad to know you love yours, I hope I will love mine too!

It got really cold here last night. I missed what the low actually got to, but it was predicted to get to 20° overnight. It was the coldest it's been here in almost a year. My feeders were really busy this morning, so I went to check, and sure enough both seed feeders were empty, so I refilled them. We got back up into the 40's this afternoon, but we're back below freezing again tonight. I'm glad it's warming up for you.

Ontem, 10:21 pm

37. The language of science and faith : straight answers to genuine questions by Karl W. Giberson and Francis S. Collins.

I read The language of science and faith : straight answers to genuine questions this month for the November Nonfiction Challenge - Matters of Faith and Philosophy. I found the book very helpful. I have struggled over the years with how evolution fits with my faith, as some have implied that you can't be a Christian and believe in evolution. However, the evidence for the great age of the earth and for evolution is overwhelming, and I don't want to surrender my brain for the sake of my faith. This book is reassuring, as it gives many arguments that support science and evolution without requiring anyone to give up their faith. They show how it is possible to believe the scientific evidence and still maintain faith. I found their arguments to be much more sensible than extremist arguments I have heard on either side.

Ontem, 10:43 pm

Wordle 894 3/6


Puzzle #172