Amber's (scaifea) Thread #11

É uma continuação do tópico Amber's (scaifea) Thread #10.

Discussão75 Books Challenge for 2023

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Amber's (scaifea) Thread #11

1scaifea
Nov 7, 11:46 am



Hey, everybody!

I'm Amber, a one-time Classics professor, turned stay-at-home parent/lady of leisure, turned part-time library assistant, turned once again Classics professor, and turned librarian again. I spend my free time sewing, writing, knitting, baking, and, of course, reading.

My reading life is happily governed by lists, which means that I read a healthy variety of things across various genres.

I'm 48 going on 12 and live in Ohio with my husband, Tomm; our son, Charlie; Mario, the Golden Retriever; and Agent Fitzsimmons, the Border Collie.

Here I am modeling the gorgeous headband that Ana (the library patron for whom I'm learning Spanish) brought back from Guatemala for me:



Favorite Books from 2022
Solutions and Other Problems
Beat the Reaper
Hyperbole and a Half
We Ride Upon Sticks
The Prestige
The Ogress and the Orphans
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer
A Fatal Grace
The Ghost Writer
In the Woods
This Book Is Gay
Brothersong
A Court of Thorns and Roses
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Waiting for the Flood
Heartstopper
Alice I Have Been
Cemetery Boys
The Plot

2scaifea
Editado: Ontem, 5:27 pm



What I'm Reading Now:
-The Prince and the Dressmaker (from my Read Soon! shelves)
-N or M? (mystery)
-You're a Mean One, Matthew Prince (romance)
-My Hero Academia vol 14 (manga)
-The House Next Door (wishlist book)
-Deryni Rising (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy Books)
-East (Beauty & the Beast retellings)
-The Reader (audiobook)
-Linger (Stiefvater Bibliography)
-(awaiting December display switchover) (from the library displays)
-Light from Uncommon Stars (Alex Award)

3scaifea
Editado: Nov 10, 1:47 pm

The books I have going at once and the On Deck books nearly all come from the following categories and lists:

-The yearly winners of a handful of the YALSA awards (Newbery, Caldecott, Schneider, Stonewall, Printz, Alex)

-A mystery

-A romance novel

-Manga

-A book from my wishlist (it's *so* long)

-A book from the Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy List

-A Beauty and the Beast retelling

-An audiobook, which I listen to as I knit/sew/otherwise craft/clean/drive/pack and unpack cargo at work

-Agatha Christie's bibliography

-Stephen Fry's bibliography

-John Boyne bibliography

-Neil Gaiman's bibliography

-Christopher Moore's bibliography

-Maggie Stiefvater's bibliography

-The NEH Timeless Classics list

-The National Book Award list

-The Pulitzer list

-An unread book from my shelves

-A book from my Read Soon! shelves

-Book-a-year challenge: A few years ago I made a year-by-year list to see how far I could go back with consecutive reads. I've since been trying to fill in the gap years.

-A full-on re-read through Shakespeare's stuff.

4scaifea
Editado: Ontem, 5:27 pm

Books Read

JANUARY
1. A Face for Picasso (Schneider Honor Book) - 7/10
2. The Devotion of Suspect X (audiobook) - 9/10
3. Heartstopper vol 4 (series read) - 9/10
4. Elatsoe (audiobook) - 9/10
5. A Court of Silver Flames (a Beauty and the Beast retelling) - 10/10
6. Shuna's Journey (manga) - 9/10
7. Still Alice (audiobook) - 8/10
8. My Hero Academia vol 7 (manga) - 9/10
9. Summer Bird Blue (audiobook) - 8/10
10. A Heartbeat Away (audiobook) - 8/10
11. A Parcel of Patterns (1001 Children's Books) - 8/10
12. Jacquard's Web (wishlist) - 6/10
13. Spider Sparrow (1001 Children's Books) - 8/10
14. Radio Silence (audiobook) - 10/10
15. I Am Not Esther (1001 Children's Books) - 9/10
16. The Day the World Came to Town (audiobook) - 9/10
17. When He Was Wicked (romance) - 9/10

FEBRUARY
18. Tarnished Are the Stars (audiobook) - 8/10
19. A Second Treasury of Knitting Patterns (for a couple of my category challenges) - 8/10
20. Assassination Classroom vol 3 (manga) - 8/10
21. Drums Along the Mohawk (NEH list) - 7/10
22. My Hero Academia vol 8 (manga) - 10/10
23. In the Ravenous Dark (audiobook) - 9/10
24. The Beauty and the Beast (B&B retellings) - 9/10
25. So Cold the River (audiobook) - 9/10
26. The Joy Luck Club (unread book from my shelves) - 9/10
27. Taken at the Flood (Christie bibliography) - 8/10
28. The Secret Life of Bees (Books I'm Reading with My Friend, Rob) - 7/10

MARCH
29. The Lady's Guide to Petticoats and Piracy (audiobook) - 9/10
30. Given Vol 1 (manga) - 10/10
31. Sophie Go's Lonely Hearts Club (audiobook) - 9/10
32. Last Night at the Telegraph Club (Stonewall Award) - 9/10
33. Sarah's Key (audiobook) - 9/10
34. Almost Flying (Stonewall Honor Book) - 8/10
35. The Cat Who Saved Books (audiobook) - 10/10
36. Assassination Classroom vol 4 (manga) - 8/10
37. Killer Research (mystery) - 8/10
38. The Weird Sisters (audiobook) - 9/10
39. Lest Darkness Fall (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy Books) - 6/10
40. The Call of Cthulhu (editing job for my classicist friend) - 2/10
41. Heartless (audiobook) - 8/10

APRIL
42. My Hero Academia vol 9 (manga) - 10/10
43. Ape House (audiobook) - 8/10
44. The Screwtape Letters (audiobook) - 7/10
45. Strange Objects (1001 Children's Books) - 8/10
46. Two Night in Lisbon (audiobook) - 8/10
47. The World Without Us (audiobook) - 8/10
48. Mrs. Stephen Fry's Diary (Fry bibliography) - 8/10
49. Given vol 2 (manga) - 10/10
50. On the Road (books I'm reading with my friend, Rob) - 7/10
51. The Ghost Drum (1001 Children's Books) - 9/10
52. It's in His Kiss (romance) - 9/10
53. The Woman in White (audiobook) - 9/10
54. A Gentleman in Moscow (wishlist) - 7/10

MAY
55. Bad Feminist (audiobook) - 10/10
56. Destination Unknown (audiobook) - 9/10
57. Pi: A Biography (wishlist) - 6/10
58. The Strain (audiobook) - 7/10
59. Freewater (Newbery Medal) - 9/10
60. My Hero Academia Vol 10 (manga) - 10/10
61. Assassination Classroom Vol 5 (manga) - 8/10
62. The Young Elites (audiobook) - 8/10
63. Blizzard of Glass (audiobook) - 8/10
64. The Witches (audiobook) - 8/10
65. Silverlock (Green Dragon 1001 Fantasy Books) - 6/10
66. The Night Strangers (audiobook) - 9/10
67. Ash (audiobook) - 9/10
68. The Changeover (1001 Children's Books) - 8/10
69. Lunatics (audiobook) - 8/10

JUNE
70. Avalon High (audiobook) - 8/10
71. Hollow Kingdom (from my Read Soon! shelves) - 8/10
72. The Darkness Outside Us (Stonewall Honor Book) - 9/10
73. The Things That Keep Us Here (audiobook) - 8/10
74. The Plot and the Pendulum (mystery) - 8/10
75. My Hero Academia vol 11 (manga) - 9/10
76. The Coming of the Dragon (audiobook) - 9/10
77. Beauty and the Werewolf (B&B retelling) - 9/10
78. Mother May I (impulse library checkout) - 8/10
79. They Came to Baghdad (Christie bibliography) - 8/10

JULY
80. The White Devil (audiobook) - 8/10
81. The Jumbies (audiobook) - 8/10
82. The Martian (audiobook) - 10/10
83. Kon Tiki (NEH) - 6/10
84. Assassination Classroom vol 6 (manga) - 7/10
85. The Looking Glass Wars (audiobook) - 8/10
86. Snow, Glass, Apples (Gaiman bibliography) - 10/10
87. When She Woke (audiobook) - 8/10
88. The Hawkline Monster (from the library displays) - 8/10
89. Premeditated Peppermint (mystery) - 8/10
90. The Lost Sun (audiobook) - 8/10
91. Wildwood (unread book from my shelves) - 6/10
92. Ordeal By Innocence (Christie bibliography) - 7/10
93. Sin in the Second City (audiobook) - 8/10
94. Notes on a Nervous Planet (from my Read Soon! Shelves) - 7/10

AUGUST
95. On the Way to the Wedding (romance) - 8/10
96. The Snow Child (audiobook) - 8/10
97. Firekeeper's Daughter (Printz Award) - 9/10
98. The Tiger (audiobook) - 7/10
99. My Hero Academia Volume 12 (manga) - 9/10
100. Forgotten Bookmarks (an unread book from my shelves) - 8/10
101. The Star-Touched Queen (audiobook) - 8/10
102. Throne of Glass (mother's day present from Charlie) - 8/10
103. The Agathas (audiobook) - 8/10
104. The Thief of Time (Boyne bibliography) - 8/10
105. Toxic Toffee (mystery) - 8/10
106. Queen Charlotte (romance) - 7/10
107. Making Faces (B&B retelling) - 4/10
108. The Lodger (audiobook) - 8/10
109. Greywaren (Stiefvater bibliography) - 10/10

SEPTEMBER
110. The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher (audiobook) - 8/10
111. Concrete Rose (Printz Honor Book) - 9/10
112. The Great Gatsby (unread book from my shelves) - 9/10
113. Les Miserables (Book-A-Year Challenge) - 9/10
114. Beastars vol 1 (manga) - 7/10
115. The Moving Finger (Christie bibliography) - 8/10
116. Tiger Lily (audiobook) - 9/10
117. Floodland (library display book) - 7/10
118. The Neil Gaiman Reader (Gaiman bibliography) - 10/10
119. The Ugly Duchess (audiobook) - 3/10
120. Wrapped (audiobook) - 9/10
121. Glitterland (romance) - 8/10
122. The Deep (audiobook) - 8/10
123. Marshmallow Malice (mystery) - 7/10
124. Eleanor & Park (audiobook) - 8/10
125. I'm Glad My Mom Died (Alex Award) - 9/10
126. My Hero Academia vol 13 (manga) - 9/10
127. Promise Boys (audiobook) - 9/10
128. Boy Meets Boy (audiobook) - 8/10
129. Evil Under the Sun (Christie bibliography) - 8/10

OCTOBER
130. The Mysterious Island (NEH Timeless Classics) - 7/10
131. The Farm (audiobook) - 9/10
132. The Lost Library (impulse library checkout) - 10/10
133. Ghost Wood Song (audiobook) - 9/10
134. Z for Zachariah (audiobook) - 8/10
135. Towing Jehovah (wishlist) - 6/10
136. Cinderella Is Dead (audiobook) - 9/10
137. Bird Box (audiobook) - 9/10
138. The Halloween Tree (impulse library checkout) - 8/10
139. Nick and Charlie (Read Soon! Shelves) - 9/10
140. Jay's Gay Agenda (audiobook) - 7/10
141. Thirteen Reasons Why (audiobook) - 8/10
142. The Hollow (Christie bibliography) - 9/10
143. Of Fire and Stars (audiobook) - 6/10

NOVEMBER
144. The Getaway (audiobook) - 8/10
145. Shakespeare for Squirrels (Moore bibliography) - 10/10
146. Black Butler vol 1 (manga) - 9/10
147. They Both Die at the End (audiobook) - 9/10
148. Lemon Drop Dead (mystery) - 7/10
149. A Land More Kind Than Home (audiobook) - 9/10
150. Why Buddhism Is True (audiobook) - 8/10
151. Let It Snow (romance) - 8/10
152. The Storied Life of AJ Fikry (audiobook) - 9/10
153. Horrorstor (audiobook) - 8/10
154. A House with Good Bones (library display book) - 9/10
155. The Girl from the Sea (Read Soon! Shelves) - 8/10
156. The Downstairs Girl (audiobook) - 8/10

5scaifea
Nov 7, 11:48 am

Simmons, Mario, and The Charlie:





6scaifea
Nov 7, 11:48 am

7lycomayflower
Nov 7, 11:52 am

Aw, Mario. So snuggles

8scaifea
Nov 7, 11:53 am



144. The Getaway by Lamar Giles (audiobook) - 8/10
Set inside a Disneyesque amusement park and told from the point of view of a handful of teens who work and live within its walls, this apocalyptic YA novel describes what happens when the 1% plot the destruction and rebuilding of the world, press the start button, and then hide behind the walls of a luxury resort to wait out the destruction. Spoiler: things get bad.

The idea for the plot is interesting, and at first the build-up was too, but somewhere about halfway through, it seemed to fall off into Bland Land, and the climax wasn’t as tense or thrilling as it could have been. I needed to be more invested in the characters, too.



145. Shakespeare for Squirrels by Christopher Moore (Moore bibliography) - 10/10
Pocket of Dog Snogging finds himself shipwrecked on the shores of Sort-Of-Not-Really-Athens in the middle of yet another Shakespeare play, and he skillfully muddles through the even-more-convoluted-than-Shakespeare-made-it plot, as he usually does.

I adore this character (I have such a soft spot for tricksters), and I adore Moore’s style. He completely dismantles AMND and scotch tapes it back together, but in the best way possible.

9scaifea
Nov 7, 11:53 am

>7 lycomayflower: She is SO warm. And...heavy. But also very cozy and sweet.

10curioussquared
Nov 7, 11:57 am

Happy new thread, Amber. Love the puppy glamour shots ;)

11scaifea
Nov 7, 11:59 am

12foggidawn
Nov 7, 12:13 pm

Happy new thread!

13katiekrug
Nov 7, 12:40 pm

Happy new one, Amber!

How is Mario doing these days?

14Ravenwoodwitch
Nov 7, 12:41 pm

Happy New Thread, Amber!

15drneutron
Nov 7, 12:50 pm

Happy new one! I haven't read that particular Moore - looks like another for the TBR...

16quondame
Nov 7, 2:32 pm

Happy new thread Amber!

17alcottacre
Nov 7, 3:01 pm

Happy new thread, Amber!

18scaifea
Nov 7, 3:05 pm

Thanks, everyone!

>13 katiekrug: Mario is doing wonderfully - thanks for asking! Honestly, I'm a little peeved at our vet for making it seem so dire and that she'd very likely need surgery. That made me worry so much, and here she is, after the meds, back to normal. *shrug*

>15 drneutron: Oh, I highly recommend his Pocket series. You don't have to read them in order, really, but the first is Fool, then The Serpent of Venice, then this one.

19FAMeulstee
Nov 7, 6:34 pm

Happy new thread, Amber!

>18 scaifea: Glad to read that Mario is doing so well on the meds!

20figsfromthistle
Nov 7, 8:44 pm

Happy new one!

22scaifea
Nov 8, 6:26 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I'm working a quick 9-12 shift, then I'll probably do some sewing/crafting before picking Charlie up from school. He'll go back this evening for a dress rehearsal for this weekend's Big Red Band Varsity Show, and I'll probably go back into the sewing room while he's rehearsing.

It was a good election day here in Ohio: Women's rights, legal weed, and the Columbus Metro Library levy all get passes! WOOT!

On the Reading Front:
I decided to dump The Phoenix and the Mirror after about 30 pages and moved on to Black Butler vol 1. Still listening to They Both Die at the End.

The Crafting Report:
I finished the prototype for the shorts, which I'll have my colleague try on to make sure the fit is right before making the Real Deal. I also made progress on Charlie's present and my current knitting xmas project.

What We're Watching:
I watched a couple of OUATs while knitting and crocheting, and Charlie and I watched a Glee and a Futurama.

23msf59
Nov 8, 7:14 am

Happy Wednesday, Amber. Happy New Thread. I hope all is well at the Scaife Manor!

24scaifea
Nov 8, 7:58 am

>23 msf59: Thanks, Mark! Things are good here - I hope the same for you!

25bell7
Nov 8, 8:16 am

Happy new thread, Amber! Sounds like an excellent day planned.

26lauralkeet
Nov 8, 8:39 am

I'm so glad to see Mario is doing well on her meds! And hurray for Ohio! (I'm also happy about Virginia)

27scaifea
Nov 8, 8:46 am

>25 bell7: Thanks!

>26 lauralkeet: Yes! and YES re: Virginia!

28PawsforThought
Nov 8, 10:01 am

>22 scaifea: I saw the election results this morning and was very excited. Seems like Virginia did well, too.

29rosalita
Editado: Nov 8, 10:15 am

>22 scaifea: Hooray for election victories in Ohio, Virginia and Kentucky (which re-elected its Democratic governor). Even here in blood-red Iowa, where we had city council and local school board elections, all but one school board candidate backed by the "Moms for Liberty" group across the state lost to candidates backed by the state teachers' union and progressive groups. It turns out the governor's and legislature's multi-year effort to demonize LGBTQ folks and ban books is not actually all that popular with actual Iowans. A minor miracle but a very welcome one.

30curioussquared
Nov 8, 10:23 am

Yay Ohio!! 🥳

31Ravenwoodwitch
Nov 8, 10:28 am

>22 scaifea: Wow, that's a pretty big day for elections.

And OOOH Black Butler; I loved that show to death in my early twenties. I was infatuated with the gothy aesthetic and horror elements (...and Sebastian but that may go without saying).

Can't wait to hear your thoughts.

32MickyFine
Nov 8, 12:41 pm

Yay for all the good election results!

33scaifea
Nov 8, 1:17 pm

>28 PawsforThought: Yep!

>29 rosalita: Oh, that's excellent news!! I feel like I have to try to remember that it's the militant loonies who plaster the roadsides with signs and that the more level-headed thinkers tend not to be as brazenly vocal. So pre-election, when it seems like there's no way saner heads will prevail, I'm (hopefully) getting a skewed view of the world.

34scaifea
Nov 8, 1:17 pm

>30 curioussquared: Yes!!

>31 Ravenwoodwitch: I didn't know it was an anime, too. And yes to Sebastian. YES.

>32 MickyFine: Yep!

35alcottacre
Nov 8, 1:20 pm

Have a wonderful Wednesday, Amber!

36RebaRelishesReading
Nov 8, 1:44 pm

Yep, a much better day-after-election-day than I expected. Gives one hope.

37lauralkeet
Nov 8, 4:32 pm

>33 scaifea: I feel like I have to try to remember that it's the militant loonies who plaster the roadsides with signs and that the more level-headed thinkers tend not to be as brazenly vocal. So pre-election, when it seems like there's no way saner heads will prevail, I'm (hopefully) getting a skewed view of the world.

Chris and I had the very same conversation yesterday, trying to keep each other sane. We've sent that happen before, and I think you are right!

38scaifea
Nov 9, 6:09 am

>35 alcottacre: Thanks, Stasia - it was a pretty good one!

>36 RebaRelishesReading: Yes! Whew, right?

>37 lauralkeet: Now if only the popular vote actually meant something in the presidential election...

39scaifea
Nov 9, 6:14 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I'm working 9-2, and we'll see how I'm feeling after that, but I may do some sewing. Charlie has rehearsal this afternoon, and then the Varsity Show will be tomorrow, Saturday, and Sunday. I'm excited to see the performance!

On the Reading Front:
I breezed through Black Butler vol 1, which is excellent and I adore Sebastian as I knew I would. Nearly finished with They Both Die at the End, and if I'm on cargo duty today I'll probably polish it off.

The Crafting Report:
I made good progress on both the knitting project and the Charlie project. (Details for both of these will have to wait until after xmas, I'm afraid.)

What We're Watching:
Charlie had rehearsal until 9:30 last night, so I was on my own. I binged some UOAT while crafting. I'm now in the middle of the season 6 musical (I'm likely talking only to Micky at this point), and just...wow. I feel like this must be the nadir. Or at least hopefully it is. Cripes.

40scaifea
Editado: Nov 9, 6:34 pm



146. Black Butler vol 1 by Yana Toboso (manga) - 9/10
The head of the Phantomhive family – owners of a massively successful British toy company – is just a boy, but no worries because he has a rather skilled butler…

Ooof, I’m hooked. Sebastian the very special butler has a new seat on the Literary Boyfriends Couch, and I will most certainly be continuing with the series.



147. They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera (audiobook) - 9/10
Matteo and Rufus are two teens living very different lives in a NYC in which you get a Deathcast call around midnight on the day you will die. They meet each other for the first time on their death day, after matching up on a Last Friend app, and they spend the day together getting to know each other while they make the best of the few hours they have left.

A very cool premise, nicely done. It’s touching and sweet, affirming and gut-punching, all without being too saccharine or maudlin. Recommended.

41scaifea
Nov 10, 6:36 am

On the Agenda for Today:
Menu planning and grocery list prep, grocery shopping, cookie baking, weekly bill sorting. Tonight is the first night of the Varsity Show, so we're all pretty excited, and I'll be acting as Uniform Mom, too.

On the Reading Front:
I started Lemon Drop Dead yesterday. Haven't started my next audiobook yet, but I'm going to give A Land More Kind Than Home a try, probably today.

The Crafting Report:
No crafting yesterday, I'm afraid.

What We're Watching:
Some Glee and some Attack on Titan.

42Ravenwoodwitch
Nov 10, 9:44 am

>40 scaifea: You could say he's "one Hell of a butler." *clinks tea glass.*
I cannot recommend the anime enough btw. They REALLY lean into the horror side of the story and the Sebastian is voiced by J Michael Tatum, the man who did Erwin in Attack on Titan.

43scaifea
Nov 10, 12:06 pm

>42 Ravenwoodwitch: *SNORK!* Exactly.

Oooh, nice!!

44MickyFine
Nov 10, 12:36 pm

>39 scaifea: LOL. Yeah, season 6 is an improvement over season 5 but the musical episode... is there.

45scaifea
Nov 10, 1:39 pm

>44 MickyFine: I mean, I think I'd know it wasn't good even if I haven't experienced the Buffy musical ep, but as it is, it's difficult to keep the gag reflex in check.

46scaifea
Nov 11, 8:41 am

On the Agenda for Today:
Last night's Varsity Show was fabulous and the kiddos did an amazing job! I'll go backstage again at the beginning tonight and tomorrow night as Uniform Mom, but won't stay for the performances (we were only allow 6 tickets total because this thing sells out every year).

So, today's performance is a matinee, which will chop the day in two pieces, but that's fine. I have weekend laundry to do, the weekly bills (because they didn't get done yesterday), some house cleaning, brushing the dogs, and then I'll work on xmas projects. Sauteed Chicken for dinner tonight.

On the Reading Front:
I read a bit of Lemon Drop Dead and listened to some A Land More Kind Than Home yesterday.

The Crafting Report:
Nope, nothing to report here for yesterday.

What We're Watching:
The Big Red Band!

47scaifea
Nov 13, 6:26 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I've got the day off, so I'll be puttering around the house today (I love having Mondays off - helps to ease into the week). I'll do some laundry, a little house cleaning, and then I'll probably spend most of the day working on Christmas projects. Corn Chowder for dinner tonight.

Charlie and the Big Red Band had a great weekend of performances! Now the only thing left in the marching band season is the Santa Parade (here in our small town) on the first Saturday of December.

On the Reading Front:
Still working on Lemon Drop Dead and A Land More Kind Than Home.

The Crafting Report:
I think I'm nearly finished with Charlie's xmas gift, so maybe I'll finish that up today.

What We're Watching:
I started the last season of OUAT yesterday while crocheting (yoicks). We also watched some Arrested Development, some Psych, and some Bee & Puppycat.

48MickyFine
Nov 13, 11:05 am

>47 scaifea: Sounds like a fabulous Monday off ahead for you, Amber.

Good luck with the last season of OUAT! I made it 2 or 3 episodes in before abandoning it.

49scaifea
Nov 13, 3:25 pm

>48 MickyFine: *snork!* I made it through #2 and then decided NOPE. I looked up the episode summaries, and then scanned through and watched Rumple's last scene, and I'm done. It was just...awful.

50scaifea
Nov 13, 3:56 pm



148. Lemon Drop Dead by Amanda Flower (mystery) - 7/10
Another murder in the small Amish town in Ohio, and again, Bailey the Chocolatier finds herself in the thick of it. This one involves her chocolate shop employee, Emily, since it’s the woman who adopted Emily’s secret Amish love child (I swear I’m not making this up) who’s turned up very murdered in the next-door pretzel shop.

Yeah, I’m done with this series after this one. The writing is getting bad and I just don’t care enough about the characters to overlook the lack of quality.

51curioussquared
Nov 13, 4:25 pm

>50 scaifea: LOL at the phrase "secret Amish love child."

52scaifea
Nov 14, 6:20 am

>51 curioussquared: I'm...not exaggerating. But it's also not as wild as it sounds, I supposed. I'll miss the fact that the series is set, essentially, just up the road from where I live (we're pretty close to Holmes County, which is famous for being mostly Amish).

53scaifea
Nov 14, 6:24 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I'm working 12-8 and running Teen Tuesday, of course (today we're doing Zentangles and chatting - I think I'll pull out some of my old Latin course bonus questions to ask them). Before I go in to work I'll probably do some laundry and maybe some xmas crafting.

On the Reading Front:
I started Let It Snow yesterday. I'm not quite finished with A Land More Kind Than Home, but if I'm on cargo today, that'll give me a chance to polish it off.

The Crafting Report:
I finished Charlie's xmas present and worked more on another one that I can't detail-divulge here, but I will take photos and share post xmas.

What We're Watching:
Some Arrested Development, some Psych, and last weekend's SNL.

54johnsimpson
Nov 14, 8:07 am

Hi Amber my dear, Happy New Thread, sending love and hugs.

55Helenliz
Nov 14, 3:11 pm

Happy new thread. I was away when you started it and then I missed it. So belated thread wishes. I like hearing what you get up to with the teens, not sure I fancy the Latin homework though!

56scaifea
Nov 15, 6:15 am

>54 johnsimpson: Hi, John! Thanks!

>55 Helenliz: (It's not really Latin, though, so you'd be fine.)

57scaifea
Nov 15, 6:19 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I'm working the Dolly shift today, which means that's pretty much my day. Leftovers for dinner.

Teen Tuesday went really well! As usual, I was worried that they would think it was silly, but they loved doing the zentangles (and I did, too!), and we had some great discussions based on the bonus questions! I'm lucky to have such a great group of kiddos coming to the program.

On the Reading Front:
I finished up A Land More Kind Than Home (review to come, probably tomorrow), and I made a little bit of progress on Let It Snow.

The Crafting Report:
I managed a bit of knitting before heading out to work yesterday. About 50% done with this particular project.

What We're Watching:
Bee & Puppycat when I got home, and I watched a bit of Lucifer while knitting.

58scaifea
Nov 16, 6:38 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I'm off today, and I'm glad for that because I think I've caught whatever it is Charlie's had all week. He's had a sore throat and been tired since Sunday, and yesterday I caught the tiredness, plus I couldn't get warm all day and my lower back is killing me (which seems weird and out of place with the rest of the symptoms, and the Panic Lobe in my brain is telling my I'm going into renal failure, so I've got that going for me). Ick. Anyway, again, the good news it I don't have to work today or essentially go anywhere besides taking Charlie to school and picking him up. I'm very grateful for the comfy pants all day status.

I need to do my menu planning and prep my grocery list for tomorrow, I may do a little cleaning, definitely some laundry, and then I'll work on xmas projects. Baked potatoes for dinner tonight.

On the Reading Front:
I made good progress on Let It Snow yesterday, since once I got home from work I just settled down on the couch with my heating pad and blanket and book. I also listened to all of Why Buddhism Is True while both packing *and* unpacking cargo at work yesterday, plus, since there were four of us working, I spent a chunk of the shift sitting at my desk listening while working.

The Crafting Report:
Part of the "working" at my desk yesterday was working on the knitted Yoda for the Star Wars display early next year. Nearly finished with the little guy.

What We're Watching:
Some Arrested Development, some Psych, and a Bee & Puppycat.

59rosalita
Nov 16, 7:53 am

>58 scaifea: I hope your bug is squashed soon, Amber. Good news that you can stay in Comfy Pants Mode all day, though!

60scaifea
Nov 16, 7:55 am

>59 rosalita: Thanks, Julia! I'm so happy for CPM!

61scaifea
Editado: Nov 16, 12:48 pm



149. A Land More Kind Than Home by Wiley Cash (audiobook) - 9/10
A small southern town, an evangelical nutjob of a preacher with control issues, a marriage on the decline, an aging midwife and a sheriff who see that trouble may be coming, and two young boys who get caught up in the impending tragedy.

A little darker than my usual fare, but I loved this novel for its excellent writing and its commentary on the abuses of fanatical religion. Great character studies, too. If I come across more of Cash’s stuff, I’ll very likely pick it up.



150. Why Buddhism Is True by Robert Wright (audiobook) - 8/10
An apology for the usefulness of western Buddhism in the modern world.

Not really anything new here for me, but an interesting read nonetheless.

62katiekrug
Nov 16, 12:51 pm

>61 scaifea: - I liked that Cash, too. I've also read his This Dark Road to Mercy and enjoyed it. I met him at the Booktopia event I attended in Asheville, and he was super nice (and handsome!). I think that was the session where our very own Mark hosted the discussion.

63scaifea
Nov 16, 12:56 pm

>62 katiekrug: I'm not surprised that Mark would host a panel with Cash involved, since this one seems right up his street. In fact, it probably made its way onto my wishlist because of him (or you!)...

*scurries off to look up photos of Hottie Wiley*

64alcottacre
Nov 16, 1:11 pm

>40 scaifea: My local library has multiple volumes of the Black Butler series, so I am going to see if I can read them before they disappear :)

Adding They Both Die at the End to the BlackHole!

>50 scaifea: No, not one for me. I am not sure who it is for, but I know that it is not me. "Secret Amish love child"? Ridiculous.

>61 scaifea: I went to add the Wiley Cash book to the BlackHole only to discover it was already there. I really need to track down a copy.

65scaifea
Nov 16, 1:51 pm

>64 alcottacre: Hi, Stasia! I hope you enjoy the the three, and yeah, I don't think the Flower book is for you.

66lauralkeet
Nov 16, 5:54 pm

>61 scaifea: If I come across more of Cash’s stuff, I’ll very likely pick it up.
Allow me to recommend The Last Ballad. It's the only other book of his that I've read, but I rated both 4.5 stars.

>62 katiekrug: Making a note of This Dark Road to Mercy, which somehow passed me by. Thanks Katie.

67scaifea
Nov 17, 6:10 am

>66 lauralkeet: Thanks for the recommendation, Laura - I'm adding it to the list!

68scaifea
Nov 17, 6:13 am

On the Agenda for Today:
Grocery shopping first thing, and then Tomm and I are going back out for more shopping, to our favorite nursery for outdoor holiday decorations and then to Costco. One of those will be fun and the other will...not. Frozen Friday Dinner.

On the Reading Front:
I finished Let It Snow last night and made progress on The Storied Life of AJ Fikry.

The Crafting Report:
I did some work on my current knitting xmas project yesterday.

What We're Watching:
I watched some Lucifer while knitting, and then yesterday evening we watched more Arrested Development, Psych, and then a Drunk History.

69scaifea
Nov 17, 12:42 pm



151. Let It Snow by Heidi Cullinan (romance) - 8/10
Frankie’s worst nightmares seem to be coming to life when he’s on his way home to Minneapolis and gets lost in a snowstorm in small-town Minnesota, home of – he assumes – redneck gay-haters. But when the three lumberjacks who take him in turn out to be just as gay as he is, Frankie says relax. And he sort of does, but the biggest of the three bears is an uber-grump, and he’s worried that he’ll never get the dude to like him.

A cute grumpy/sunshine m/m romance, although it could have used some paring down in some places (one conversation on a topic is enough; four to five rehashings are way too many) and some fleshing out in others (a couple of characters are introduced for the sole purpose of calling Frankie a f*g and then they’re dropped completely, when they had the potential to be the two most interesting characters in the book). Still, a fun, popcorn-y read with some spice.

70rosalita
Nov 17, 12:44 pm

>69 scaifea: Nice review, Amber. And bonus points for the Frankie Goes to Hollywood musical reference!

71lycomayflower
Nov 17, 12:46 pm

>69 scaifea: I remember this series so fondly, though I think now I would find them to pale a bit in comparison to romance I read later (these were among my earliest romance reads). But Winter Wonderland (which I thought was the best) will always hold a special place in my heart. Glad they are still good enough to be fun!

72scaifea
Nov 17, 1:57 pm

>70 rosalita: Thanks, Julia! And, I mean, how could I not?

73scaifea
Nov 17, 1:58 pm

>71 lycomayflower: Yeah, I was a little hesitant to post the review because I didn't want to lukewarm a book you had recommended, so whew.

74alcottacre
Nov 17, 5:57 pm

>40 scaifea: I went over to the local library today to pick up Black Butler. I asked the library clerk to show me where the series is shelved - the library website shows 25 volumes - so that I could find them for myself. We went over to the appropriate shelf and there was not a single volume there. I looked down at the book I held in my hands and discovered it was Volume 4 in the series, not the first volume that I was anticipating. The clerk checked the 2 other partner libraries and neither of them held a single volume of the series. So, the series that I thought I was going to be able to read at least 25 volumes of, consists of one volume - volume 4. *sigh*

75scaifea
Nov 18, 6:25 am

>74 alcottacre: Wait, what?! How does the website say they have 25 volumes on the shelves and they...don't?!

76scaifea
Nov 18, 6:30 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I've pulled the Saturday Shift this week. So that's what I'll be doing until 3, and then it's highly probable that I'll come home and straight into a nap. Tomm's in charge of dinner - burgers and chips - so after nap time I may do some xmas crafting.

On the Reading Front:
I started A House with Good Bones yesterday, and though it's still early days, so far I'm loving it. the voice of the narrator is so great, and the Something's Not Right vibe is being crafted at a great pace. I'm eager to see what happens. I'm also still listening to The Storied Life of AJ Fikry and liking it just fine so far.

The Crafting Report:
Made more progress on the knitting project, and I toted up the supplies for the next crochet xmas craft so that I can take it to work today (a Feathers McGraw for Tomm, who is a huge Wallace and Gromit *and* penguin fan).

What We're Watching:
Arrested Development and an Only Murders episode.

77lauralkeet
Nov 18, 7:47 am

Good morning Amber!

Feathers McGraw! I love it. I hope you'll share a pic when you can.

78scaifea
Nov 18, 8:20 am

>77 lauralkeet: Morning, Laura! I will certainly share photos if it turns out okay - Tomm isn't on SM at all, so he won't see it if I do.

79alcottacre
Editado: Nov 18, 11:15 am

>75 scaifea: Yep! They have exactly one volume of the purported 25 and it is volume 4.

Have a super Saturday!

80scaifea
Nov 18, 11:44 am

>79 alcottacre: I feel sorry for those librarians - it's maddening when the computer tells you there's a book there and it just...isn't.

81scaifea
Nov 19, 8:34 am

Oh the Agenda for Today:
Our Big Family Outing today is to the pharmacy to get our flu and covid boosters. Do we know how to party or what?! After that I'll mostly be in the kitchen today, I think, making coffee cake for the week's breakfasts, a cake for dessert, doing meal prep for Charlie's lunches, and making dinner. I may get some xmas crafting in there, too.

On the Reading Front:
Both A House with Good Bones and The Storied Life of AJ Fikry are coming along fine.

The Crafting Report:
I started crocheting Feathers McGraw yesterday, and also made some knitting progress.

What We're Watching:
Arrested Development, Psych, and a couple of Thanksgiving episodes (one Always Sunny and one Modern Family).

82scaifea
Nov 20, 6:23 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I'm working 9-12 (we all have weird hours this week because of the holiday), then I'll come home and bake cookies for tomorrow's Teen Tuesday (I promised them cookies and tea for our book club weeks), and then I'll work more on xmas projects. Beef Vegetable Soup for dinner tonight.

On the Reading Front:
Still plugging along with the Kingfisher and the Zevin. I may finish the latter today. We'll see.

The Crafting Report:
I made good progress on the knitting project yesterday. I may get the actual knitting done today. We'll see.

What We're Watching:
Arrested Development, Psych, SNL, and I watched a couple of Lucifer eps while knitting and popping back and forth to the kitchen for baking.

83alcottacre
Nov 20, 12:14 pm

>80 scaifea: Yeah, the guy who was helping me felt badly about the situation. As did I :)

Have a marvelous Monday, Amber!

84scaifea
Nov 21, 6:13 am

>83 alcottacre: Thanks, Stasia!

85scaifea
Nov 21, 6:16 am

On the Agenda for Today:
Suuuuper busy day today - I have a doc appointment (just a follow-up check-in) this morning, then I will hopefully have time to hurry home and get my work things before heading to the library for my 12-8 shift. Teen Tuesday today is our first book club meeting; we're chatting about dark fairy tale retellings. Should be fun.

On the Reading Front:
I finished Fikry (review to come, maybe tomorrow). Still working on A House with Good Bones.

The Crafting Report:
Not a lot of time for crafting yesterday, but I did get the Scaife Family Christmas Movie Marathon calendar set. Woot!

What We're Watching:
Arrested Development, Psych, Attack on Titan, Drunk History.

86msf59
Nov 21, 7:04 am

Morning, Amber. I am so glad you got to A Land More Kind Than Home. It is so good and my favorite of Cash's work, although I recommend all of his books. I did not host the Cash event but I did host one of the other authors. That was a great Booktopia, plus I got to hang with Katie. 😁

87scaifea
Nov 21, 10:49 am

>86 msf59: Hi, Mark! I'm convinced that it made it onto my wishlist because of you - it had been on there a few years...

88msf59
Nov 21, 1:41 pm

Hey, better late than...😁

I am just glad it was a hit for you.

89scaifea
Nov 21, 4:04 pm

>88 msf59: Ha! I really should start making notes about who recommends what.

90alcottacre
Nov 21, 4:08 pm

>89 scaifea: I try to remember to make notes, but often forget :)

Have a terrific Tuesday, Amber!

91Helenliz
Nov 22, 4:03 am

Looking forward to hearing the teens' recommendations for dark retellings. I'm a sucker for that kind of thing.

92scaifea
Nov 22, 6:28 am

>90 alcottacre: Thanks, Stasia!

>91 Helenliz: Ah, sorry, my list is at work. I *can* tell you that two of them are reading through the A Court of Thorns and Roses series, and another talked about Coraline. Oh, and another is reading Pan's Labyrinth.

93scaifea
Nov 22, 6:33 am

On the Agenda for Today:
Cooking and baking for tomorrow, mostly. And very likely a nap in there somewhere. Charlie has school, but I'll be picking him up early; they release the high schoolers at noon to go to the football stadium for the - *shudder* - Powder Puff Football Game, and Charlie wants no part of that nonsense (we're clearly raising him right).

On the Reading Front:
Still working on A House with Good Bones, and I'm now listening to Horrorstor.

The Crafting Report:
I had some time to work a little on Feathers McGraw yesterday.

What We're Watching:
A Thanksgiving episode of Brooklyn 99.

94SandyAMcPherson
Nov 22, 10:16 am

Hi Amber, I'm delurking finally... I *have* been around but without much to say about reading or books. I went into a sink hole of (for me) poor reads. That's not to say the novels were actually "poor".

Last night, I just finished a silly, hilarious romp with an Osman re-read, The Man Who Died Twice. I first read that in 2019 and couldn't remember the "gang" when I read the more recent The Bullet That Missed.

I think my mood determines to great effect on whether something engages me. I'm going to try Ann Cleeves, The Rising Tide tonight.

95Copperskye
Nov 22, 11:07 am

Good morning, Amber! I've been wondering how Mario was making out and see from your comment from a week or so ago that she is doing well. I'm so glad to see that! There was a story on the news last week about humans not always needing surgery when they have an ACL issue. What's good for the dog... Sometimes time and rest are very good healers.

96scaifea
Nov 22, 11:41 am

>94 SandyAMcPherson: Good luck with your next read.

>95 Copperskye: Thanks for the Mario love! We're so happy that she seems so much better, and she's now completely off the meds and still no limping whatsoever. I'm grateful that she's better, but I'm also annoyed at the vet for immediately going to the worst case option and not even mentioning that it might get better on its own. She had me so full of fret, and for no good reason at all.

97Whisper1
Editado: Nov 22, 12:36 pm

Hi Amber! I send all good wishes for a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.

98scaifea
Nov 22, 2:47 pm



152. The Storied Life of AJ Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin (audiobook) - 9/10
AJ Fikry is a curmudgeon of a bookshop owner, a widower and lit snob who lives alone above his store, eats a diet made up solely of frozen Indian food, and almost – but not quite – hates life in general. Then someone steals his extremely rare and valuable copy of Poe’s Tamerlane. And *then* someone leaves a baby in his store. These two things change his life pretty much completely, and for the better.

On the surface this novel doesn’t…do much, but I’m okay with that. Fikry’s character grows, sure. We get little life moments throughout, with a smattering of slightly larger ones, and they cumulate into, well, a storied life. There’s a come-full-circle-ness to it at the end that I think works well, and I really enjoyed how the small mysteries here and there come together in an interesting way. I don’t have too much to complain about here at all, beyond the ending veering a little too close to Sappytown, and if its intent is to be Literary Fiction, I think it tries a little too hard and therefore fails. But in that same vein, I kind of love that Fikry himself, who hates everything that’s not LF, would have very likely turned his nose up at the novel in which he’s the MC. And that’s delightfully fitting in a ton of ways.



153. Horrorstor by Grady Hendrix (audiobook) - 8/10
Amy works in an IKEA-type knock-off store, hates her coworkers, hates her boss, and hates the job in general. She only takes the weird extra shift offered by her boss, which involves spending the night in the store with two other employees to try to catch the serial vandal haunting the store, for the overtime hours. As it turns out, the culprit isn’t so much a vandal as a haunting. And Amy finds out what it means for all hell to bust lose.

A haunted house story, but set in an IKEA with the underlying metaphor that Retail Is Hell. A fun read – it felt like, essentially, reading the script of a slasher horror movie.

99katiekrug
Nov 22, 5:02 pm

I'm in the minority of those who didn't much like The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry. I remember little about it, so I looked up what I wrote at the time:

"I started off really loving this book. It was sharp and funny and genuine, and I liked the cast of characters. But I don't know, maybe halfway through, it began to get weighed down by it's own cuteness and to collapse under the weight of too many cliches. Plus, I saw the "twist" coming right from the beginning, so that's mildly annoying.

Anyway, it's a sweet story that started off with just the right amount of acid to balance it out but ended up being entirely too saccharine for my taste."

I'm glad it was more of a winner for you. Have a nice Thanksgiving!

100scaifea
Nov 23, 8:32 am

>99 katiekrug: I guess it pays to be less clever - I didn't predict the resolution of the mystery. I'm also usually pretty sensitive to books/authors being too pleased with themselves, but that didn't annoy me enough to keep me from liking the underlying story here. I suspect it has something to do with the moods we're in when we read.

101scaifea
Nov 23, 8:33 am

Happy Thanksgiving, all! We're headed to the BIL's today. Fingers crossed that the traffic isn't too bad from here to Cincy.

102johnsimpson
Nov 23, 3:59 pm

Hi Amber my dear, Happy Thanksgiving dear friend.

103scaifea
Nov 24, 7:25 am

>102 johnsimpson: Thanks, John!

104scaifea
Nov 24, 7:29 am

On the Agenda for Today:

I'm half dead on my feet this morning after the long day yesterday, but I'm up and showered and (sort of) ready for my Friday shift at the library. Ridiculous that we're even open today - odds are we'll have, at most, 3 people in? Yeesh. Oh well. My coworker today is one of my favorite colleagues, so we'll have a good time anyway, and maybe I'll get some good work done on Feathers McGraw. Most definitely I will be heading right into a nap when I get home this afternoon. Frozen Friday for dinner tonight.

On the Reading Front:
I finished A House with Good Bones, read through The Girl from the Sea, and started East over the past couple of days. I also started listening to The Downstairs Girl.

The Crafting Report:
I'm hoping to get some work done, as I said, on Feathers today, and maybe finished the knitting part of my current...knitting project. We'll see how long that nap goes...

What We're Watching:
We've been watching our favorite Thanksgiving TV episodes: Pangs (Buffy), a couple of Modern Family ones, a couple of Brooklyn 99s, and a Parks and Rec.

105foggidawn
Nov 24, 9:22 am

>104 scaifea: I'm on the Black Friday library shift too, and like you, I'm sure it will be pretty quiet. Fortunately, I have some program planning stuff that will keep me busy, and I sure don't mind avoiding retail establishments today!

106SandyAMcPherson
Nov 24, 10:35 am

>98 scaifea:, >99 katiekrug:, >100 scaifea: Ultimately, I didn't much care for The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry either (read it in 2019). I awarded 3-stars.
Just now, I went back to look at the ratings and I see you and I are indeed in the minority, Katie, with our opinions on the narrative. It's the ol' YMMV, which is always a valid point of view, too.

Amber has a very good sentiment (with which I agree): Liking the story or not, has something to do with the moods we're in when we read.

107scaifea
Nov 24, 1:01 pm

>105 foggidawn: We've been annoyingly busy. Gah.

>106 SandyAMcPherson: I'm sorry it didn't work better for you, Sandy.

108scaifea
Nov 25, 9:15 am

On the Agenda for Today:
We're putting up our Christmas decorations today! This afternoon, then, I'll probably work on xmas projects, and then tonight we'll have our traditional watching of Elf as our first holiday movie of the season. Bacon and eggs for dinner, I think.

On the Reading Front:
I didn't have time to crack open my print book yesterday, but I did get a nice chunk of listening time while doing cargo, so I made some progress on The Downstairs Girl.

The Crafting Report:
I managed a little progress on Feathers in between patrons yesterday, and then once I was home, I worked on the knitting xmas project.

What We're Watching:
Some Attack on Titan, some Arrested Development, and a Futurama.

109scaifea
Editado: Nov 26, 8:59 am

On the Agenda for Today:
We're having our own, just-the-three-of-us Thanksgiving dinner today, so I'll be baking this morning (pumpkin pie, of course, and the maybe also some banana bread for this week's breakfasts), then this afternoon I'll put some spiced cider on to simmer, and this evening the dinner stuff (stuffing, mashed potatoes, corn casserole,... (Tomm's in charge of the turkey)). Otherwise, I'll do laundry, sort through the weekly bills, put together my schedule for next week, and work on xmas projects.

On the Reading Front:
I listened to a bit of The Downstairs Girl yesterday and managed to read a few pages of East.

The Crafting Report:
More progress made on the knitting project. I'd love to get it finished today, but I suspect that's a little ambitious. We'll see.

What We're Watching:
Elf! And I watched some Lucifer episodes while knitting.

110SandyAMcPherson
Nov 26, 12:13 pm

Hiya ~~ just finished the Stead/Mass juvie novel, The Lost Library. A BB from you awhile ago, which I appreciated 'cause I never would have chosen this story otherwise.
Haven't written up a review yet, but plan on 4-stars with a slight niggle about kids liking the format.

111scaifea
Nov 26, 1:28 pm

>110 SandyAMcPherson: I'm glad you enjoyed it!

112scaifea
Nov 26, 2:09 pm



154. A House with Good Bones by T. Kingfisher (library display book) - 9/10
After a dig opportunity is put on hold, Sam, an archaeoentomologist, goes to stay with her mother for a while. Sam’s brother has mentioned that their mom seems off, and it doesn’t take long for Sam to see what he means: their usually free-spirited mother has repainted her once-brightly-colored home all in shades of ecru, and their grandmother’s weird old racist paintings are back up on the walls. She also doesn’t seem to want to hear anything at all critical about said grandmother, and in fact gets noticeably nervous at such talk. The house used to be Grand Mae’s, and it seems to Sam that, years after her dead, the nasty old bag is strangely present again, at least in her mom’s mind. She soon discovers that it may not be all in her mother’s head, though, when strange and scary things start happening to Sam, too.

An interesting twist on the haunted house genre. The plot is interesting and original, but what really makes it a great read for me is that character of Sam herself. She’s very well drawn, very believable, and has a fantastic 1st person voice.



155. The Girl from the Sea by Molly Knox Ostertag (Read Soon! Shelves) - 8/10
A middle grade graphic novel about a Morgan, who feels out of place in her small island town, and who falls for the eponymous girl, who in turn changes both their lives.

Sweet and fun and sad and very well written/drawn. Definitely recommended.

113rosalita
Nov 26, 2:36 pm

>112 scaifea: OK, FINE. I'll put the Kingfisher book on my library holds list. Are you happy now?!

114scaifea
Nov 26, 6:03 pm

>113 rosalita: *snork!* Only if you end up liking it. Otherwise, I'll feel guilty...

115scaifea
Nov 27, 7:23 am

On the Agenda for Today:
Charlie has the day off and so do I, so we're going to our favorite shopping spot for a bit today, plus we'll pop into the fabric store so he can pick out pajama fabric. The rest of the day will be spent on xmas projects. Spaghetti for dinner tonight.

On the Reading Front:
Still working on East and The Downstairs Girl.

The Crafting Report:
Still working on the knitting project.

What We're Watching:
Arrested Development, Psych, and Office Christmas Party.

116Helenliz
Nov 27, 7:59 am

I'll skip over any mention of Christmas - so not ready for it yet.

Some time ago you suggested I read plays about Electra as treated by Euripides, Sophocles & Aeschylus. What's the play by Aeschlyus called? The book "Complete Plays" has arrived, only I can't remember which one I should be reading.

117foggidawn
Nov 27, 10:06 am

Yay for Christmas decorations and spiced cider and Elf! I want to do all of those things, but my Christmas decoration tubs are still in the basement, and we finished off the cider some time ago. We're planning on getting our tree on Friday, so the decorating will happen then.

>112 scaifea: I keep looking at A House with Good Bones. I think I had better add it to my list.

118scaifea
Nov 27, 1:22 pm

>116 Helenliz: The particular play is The Libation Bearers, but I highly recommend you read the entire trilogy, in order: The Agamemnon, The Libation Bearers, and The Eumenides (=The Kindly Ones).

>117 foggidawn: Good luck with the decorating. I'm glad it's done here.

119FAMeulstee
Nov 28, 5:38 am

Very belated congratulations on 2 x 75, Amber!

I guess I was a little brainfogged in last weeks, as despite regular visits, I only noticed it now.

120scaifea
Nov 28, 6:21 am

>119 FAMeulstee: Thanks, Anita! I hadn't even realized it, so you're more on top of it than I am!

121scaifea
Nov 28, 6:25 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I'm working 12-8 and running Teen Tuesday (it'll be an easy one today, a board game of some sort). This morning, I'll try to get some xmas crafting done before I go in.

On the Reading Front:
No new news to report here; still working on East and The Downstairs Girl.

The Crafting Report:
The knitting project is finally in the blocking step, and I started crocheting an amigurumi Ahsoka for one of Tomm's nieces, who's a big fan.

What We're Watching:
Arrested Development, Psych, and a Netflix xmas movie called Single All the Way, which is, essentially, Hallmark for The Gays. It was cute, but probably not one we'll watch again. It was worth it for the representation and for Jennifer Coolidge.

122scaifea
Nov 29, 6:22 am

On the Agenda for Today:
It's the Dolly Shift for me today, so not much else will be happening. And we're still working through Thanksgiving leftovers, so no cooking necessary!

On the Reading Front:
Same books, different day: East and The Downstairs Girl.

The Crafting Report:
Both the Ashoka and the Feather McGraw amigurumi are coming along nicely.

What We're Watching:
Attack on Titan.

Teen Tuesday yesterday was a hoot - I pulled a card game off the shelves that I'd never played before and it turned out to be a lot of fun! It's called Once Upon a Time, and you are dealt different story element cards and you have to tell a story using them until you have only your Ending card left - and you try to shape the narrative toward your own ending. Others can interrupt and steal the story, though, and it becomes a hilarious good time. We played three rounds and came up with pretty great stories!

123johnsimpson
Nov 29, 3:59 pm

Hi Amber my dear, belated congrats on you reaching 2 X 75 books read for the year so far, dear friend.

124scaifea
Nov 29, 5:18 pm

>123 johnsimpson: Thanks, John!

125scaifea
Ontem, 6:20 am

On the Agenda for Today:
Menu planning, prepping my grocery list, and then grocery shopping this morning. Cookie baking once I'm home and all the groceries are put away, and then some xmas project work before picking Charlie up from school. I may cook something, or I may just let us have leftovers one more day. We'll see.

On the Reading Front:
Still working on East, but I'll finished up The Downstairs Girl today for sure - I only have 15 minutes left.

The Crafting Report:
I'm nearly finished with Feathers McGraw - all the actual crocheting is done and now I just need to sew on the bits. Same with Yoda - just assembly left to do (slow day at the library yesterday).

What We're Watching:
A Christmas ep of Community, and then we watched The Family Stone for the first (and last) time. Gah. What a terrible movie. Everyone in it (except for you, Luke Wilson, you adorable sweetheart) is a complete asshole, and the sad/sappy part didn't even work because we all hated the mom so much we didn't care, good riddance. Yoicks.

126scaifea
Ontem, 6:24 am

Oh! And how about this:

For his Digital Arts class project, Charlie made a documentary about the middle school Robotics Team, and they're featuring it on the middle school website!

Take a look!

127bell7
Ontem, 7:20 am

>126 scaifea: Oh that's so great! Thanks for sharing, Amber.

128katiekrug
Ontem, 7:47 am

I was told a few years ago that I HAD to watch The Family Stone, so I did. And yeah. I hated it. Terrible movie.

129scaifea
Ontem, 5:26 pm

>127 bell7: Right? I think he should be very proud of that - it really does feel like, well, a documentary. Very impressive for his first film effort.

>128 katiekrug: Huh. I admit I thought you'd be on the other side of that fence.

130scaifea
Ontem, 5:28 pm



156. The Downstairs Girl by Stacey Lee (audiobook) - 8/10
Jo and Old Jim (the man who took her in as a baby when her parents abandoned her) secretly live in the basement of a newspaper print shop. During the day they both work for the same family – Old Jim as a stable hand, and Jo as a lady’s maid to the family’s daughter. But after working hours, Jo starts writing an advice column for the upstairs paper and manages to keep the secret of her identity along with her residence. The revelation of either one would be ruinous, since the people of Atlanta would hardly stand to be given advice by a young Chinese woman. As she is stirring up the public with her opinions on freedoms for women (including the right to vote and to ride a bicycle), she also sets out on another secret mission: to unfold the mystery of the old letter she’s found among Old Jim’s things, which may lead her to discovering just who her parents were and why they left her.

An engaging-enough story, and the characters are interesting, but the ending is way too pat and rushed, and that took away from the overall goodness. I did enjoy the way bits of the advice column are interspersed with the narrative in a way that mirrors what’s going on in the plot.

131katiekrug
Ontem, 9:23 pm

>129 scaifea: - Huh. 🤷‍♀️

132scaifea
Hoje, 8:03 am

On the Agenda for Today:
I'm working the Friday shift (9:30-3), then coming home to work on xmas projects. Frozen Friday dinner.

On the Reading Front:
Still plugging along with East, and I started listening to The Reader this morning.

The Crafting Report:
Feathers McGraw is finished! I also did some work on the amigurumi Ahsoka for one of our nieces.

What We're Watching:
another Community xmas ep, and then we tried Mixed Nuts, which we all loved.

133scaifea
Hoje, 8:04 am

The finished Feathers:

134rosalita
Hoje, 8:36 am