PAUL C IN 23 (23)

É uma continuação do tópico PAUL C IN 23 (22).

Este tópico foi continuado por PAUL C IN 23 (24).

Discussão75 Books Challenge for 2023

Aderi ao LibraryThing para poder publicar.

PAUL C IN 23 (23)

Nov 18, 2023, 9:31 pm


I am reading a book called Around the World in 80 Books and that book as did Jules Verne's classic starts in London. It is also where I am hoping to end my year! There are 16 chapters of locations with 5 books for each location. One of the five books for London is Something Fresh and I shall be reading that.

Editado: Dez 2, 2023, 4:34 am

The Opening Words

I shall be reading Something Fresh by P.G. Wodehouse because:
1) It is featured in one of the 16 location chapters of Around the World in 80 Books and I will read something for each location from that book.
2) I am doing a 150 books in 150 years by 150 authors challenge and it will suffice for 1915; and
3) It is P.G. Wodehouse.

" The sunshine of a fair spring morning fell graciously upon London town. Out in Piccadilly its heartening warmth seemed to infuse into traffic and pedestrians alike a novel jauntiness, so that bus drivers jested and even the lips of chauffeurs uncurled into not unkindly smiles. Policemen whistled at their posts, clerks on their way to work, beggars approached the task of trying to persuade perfect strangers to bear the burden of their maintenance with that optimistic vim which makes all the difference. It was one of those happy mornings."


I have to say that I would have had little difficulty identifying Wodehouse as the author of those cheery lines of commencement.

Editado: Nov 18, 2023, 9:46 pm


1. The King's Fool by Mahi Binebine (2017) 125 pp Fiction / ANC / Morocco
2. The Golden Ass by Apuleius (c 170) 216 pp Fiction / ANC / Tunisia / 1001
3. Driftnet by Lin Anderson (2003) 262 pp Thriller / Rhona MacLeod 1
4. The Eagle of the Ninth by Rosemary Sutcliff (1954) 292 pp Fiction / BAC
5. Free : Coming of Age at the End of History by Lea Ypi (2021) 310 pp Non-Fiction / NF Challenge
6. The Bridges of Constantine by Ahlem Mosteghanemi (1993) 305 pp Fiction / ANC / Algeria
7. Bloodlines by Fred D'Aguiar (2000) 161 pp Poetry / BAC
8. Borstal Boy by Brendan Behan (1958) 372 pp Fiction / 1001
9. Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson (2008) 300 pp Fiction / AAC
10. U.A. Fanthorpe : Selected Poems by U.A. Fanthorpe (2013) 153 pp Poetry
11. In the Country of Men by Hisham Matar (2006) 245 pp Fiction / ANC / Libya
12. Foundation : The History of England Volume 1 by Peter Ackroyd (2011) 462 pp Non-Fiction
13. Closed Circles by Viveca Sten (2009) 451 pp Thriller / Sandhamn 2
14. The Albemarle Book of Modern Verse edited by FES Finn (1961) 181 pp Poetry
15. Brooklyn Heights by Miral al-Tahawy (2012) 220 pp Fiction / ANC / Egypt
16. The Midnight Bell by Patrick Hamilton (1929) 221 pp Fiction
17. The Siege of Pleasure by Patrick Hamilton (1932) 118 pp Fiction
18. The Plains of Cement by Patrick Hamilton (1934) 188 pp Fiction
19. The Stories of Vladimir Nabokov by Vladimir Nabokov (1995) 663 pp Fiction / Short Stories
20. The Madness of Crowds by Douglas Murray (2019) 267 pp Non-Fiction
21. The Death of Murat Idrissi by Tommy Wieringa (2017) 102 pp Fiction
22. Foster by Claire Keegan (2010) 88 pp Fiction

23. Torch by Lin Anderson (2004) 230 pp Thriller / Rhona MacLeod 2
24. Things I Don't Want to Know by Deborah Levy (2003) 163 pp Non-Fiction
25. The Book of Chameleons by Jose Eduardo Agualusa (2004) 180 pp Fiction / ANC / Angola
26. Dearly by Margaret Atwood (2020) 122 pp Poetry
27. The Days of Abandonment by Elena Ferrante (2002) 188 pp Fiction
28. The Cost of Living by Deborah Levy (2018) 187 pp Non-Fiction
29. The Lost Art of Sinking by Naomi Booth (2015) 86 pp Fiction / BAC
30. Poetry of the Thirties edited by Robin Skelton (1964) 287 pp Poetry
31. The Darkness Knows by Arnaldur Indridason (2017) 338 pp Thriller / Scandi
32. The Whistling Season by Ivan Doig (2006) 345 pp Fiction
33. The History of England Volume II : Tudors by Peter Ackroyd (2012) 471 pp Non-Fiction
34. Male Tears by Benjamin Myers (2021) 264 pp Fiction / Short Stories
35. Woman of the Ashes by Mia Couto (2015) 254 pp Fiction / ANC / Mozambique
36. Real Estate by Deborah Levy (2021) 297 pp Non-Fiction
37. Angle of Repose by Wallace Stegner (1971) 569 pp Fiction / 1001 Books / Pulitzer

38. Deadly Code by Lin Anderson (2005) 261 pp Thriller / Rhona MacLeod 3
39. Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (2003) 307 pp Fiction / ANC / Nigeria
40. My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell (1956) 308 pp Non-Fiction / Memoirs
41. What Goes On : Selected and New Poems 1995-2009 by Stephen Dunn (2009) 195 pp Poetry / AAC
42. I'm a Fan by Sheena Patel (2022) 203 pp Fiction
43. Native Guard by Natasha Trethewey (2006) 46 pp Poetry / AAC

Editado: Nov 18, 2023, 9:47 pm


44. Anne Boleyn : 500 Years of Lies by Hayley Nolan (2019) 282 pp Non-Fiction / BAC
45. Hotel of the Saints by Ursula Hegi (2001) 170 pp Fiction / AAC
46. Dark Flight by Lin Anderson (2007) 392 pp Thiller
47. Boulder by Eva Baltasar (2020) 105 pp Fiction / Spain
48. Moscow by Nick Carter (1970) 155 pp Thriller
49. Thirteen Months of Sunrise by Rania Mamoun Short Stories / ANC / Sudan
50. The Waste Land by T.S. Eliot (1922) 32 pp Poetry
51. Felicity : Poems by Mary Oliver (2014) 81 pp Poetry
52. Wandering Souls by Cecile Pin (2023) 238 pp Fiction / Vietnam
53. Justice on Trial : Radical Solutions for a System at Breaking Point by Chris Daw (2020) 264 pp Non-Fiction
54. The Jewel in the Crown by Paul Scott (1966) 488 pp Fiction
55. Bullet Train by Kotaro Isaka (2010) 451 pp Thriller / Japan

56. Taste : My Life Through Food by Stanley Tucci (2021) 299 pp Non-Fiction
57. Tell Me the Truth About Life curated by Cerys Matthews (2019) 177 pp Poetry
58. Those Feet : An Intimate History of English Football by David Winner (2005) 268 pp Non-Fiction
59. The Arctic : Poems by Don Paterson (2022) 82 pp Poetry
60. Suffer the Little Children by Donna Leon (2007) 342 pp Thiller
61. The Missing Months by Lachlan MacKinnon (2022) 63 pp Poetry

62. Easy Kill by Lin Anderson (2008) 390 pp Thriller
63. Civil War : The History of England Volume III by Peter Ackroyd (2014) 470 pp Non-Fiction
64. Ruth Pitter : Collected Poems by Ruth Pitter (1996) 299 pp Poetry
65. Dance of the Jakaranda by Peter Kimani (2017) 350 pp Fiction / ANC / Kenya
66. England's Green by Zaffar Kunial (2022) 70 pp Poetry
67. Time Shelter by Georgi Gospodinov (2020) 302 pp Fiction / Bulgaria
68. The Illustrated Woman by Helen Mort (2022) 82 pp Poetry
69. Oxblood by Tom Benn (2022) 245 pp Fiction
70. The Swerve by Stephen Greenblatt (2011) 263 PP Non-Fiction
71. No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy (2005) 309 pp Fiction
72. The Breast by Philip Roth (1972) 74 pp Fiction 1001 Books
73. Heritage by Miguel Bonnefoy (2020) 149 pp Fiction / Venezuela
74. Doctor Who : The Androids of Tara (1978) 143 pp SF / BAC
75. Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho (1998) 210 pp Fiction /1001 books / Brazil
76. Collected Later Poems by Anthony Hecht (2003) 238 pp Poetry
77. Zazie in the Metro by Raymond Queneau (1959) 177 pp Fiction / France
78. Quiet by Victoria Adukwei Bulley (2022) 81 pp Poetry / ANC / Ghana
79. Bonsai by Alejandro Zambra (2006) 74 pp Fiction / Chile
80. Pyre by Perumal Murugam (2013) 194 pp Fiction / India
81. Small Country by Gael Faye (2016) 183 pp Fiction / ANC / Burundi
82. Fieldwork in Ukrainian Sex by Oksana Zabuzhko (1996) 161 pp Fiction / Ukraine

Editado: Nov 18, 2023, 9:48 pm


83. Lenin on the Train by Catherine Merridale (2016) 291 pp Non-Fiction / Reading through time
84. Selected Poems by W.H. Auden (1979) 319 pp Poetry
85. Paradais by Fernanda Melchior (2022) 118 pp Fiction / Mexico
86. Final Cut by Lin Anderson (2009) 344 pp Thriller
87. John Heath-Stubbs : Selected Poems by John Heath-Stubbs (1990) 144 pp Poetry
88. Kingdom of Characters by Jing Tsu (2022) 280 pp Non Fiction / Taiwan
89. Cemetery Lake by Paul Cleave (2008) 347 pp Thriller / New Zealand
90. Fly Away, Peter by David Malouf (1982) 142 pp Fiction / Australia
91. East of Eden by John Steinbeck (1952) 602 pp Fiction / 1001 Books
92. Profiles in Courage by John F. Kennedy (1955) 226 pp Non-Fiction / AAC

93. Trespasses by Louise Kennedy (2022) 309 pp Fiction
94. August 1914 by Bruno Cabanes (2014) 196 pp Non-Fiction
95. The Shameful State by Sony Labou Tansi (1981) 116 pp Fiction / ANC / DRC
96. Told by Starlight in Chad by Joseph Brahim Seid (2007) 71 pp Fiction / ANC / Chad
97. The House of Doors by Tan Twan Eng (2023) 304 pp Fiction / Malaysia
98. Six Weeks in the Sioux Tepees by Sarah F Wakefield (1863) 87 pp Non-Fiction
99. Winchelsea by Alex Preston (2022) 334 pp Fiction / BAC
100. Blue White Red by Alain Mabanckou (1998) 147 pp Fiction / ANC / Congo
101. The Trees by Percival Everett (2021) 308 pp Fiction / AAC
102. Bound to Violence by Yambo Ouologuem (1968) 182 pp Fiction / ANC / Mali
103. The Great Alone by Kristen Hannah (2018) 438pp Fiction
104. Standing Heavy by Gauz (2014) 167 pp Fiction / ANC / Ivory Coast
105. So Long a Letter by Mariama Ba (1979) 95 pp Fiction / ANC / Senegal
106. The Following Story by Cees Nooteboom (1991) 98 pp Fiction
107. Requiem for a Wren by Nevil Shute (1955) 250 pp Fiction
108. The Marriage Portrait by Maggie O'Farrell (2022) 436 pp Fiction

109. Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line by Deepa Anappara (2020) 344 pp Fiction
110. Assembly by Natasha Brown (2021) 100 pp Fiction
111. The Maidens by Alex Michaelides (2021) 356 pp Thriller /BAC /Cyprus
112. Careless by Kirsty Capes (2021) 317 pp Fiction
113. The Cry of Winnie Mandela by Njabulo Ndebele (2004) 146 pp ANC / South Africa
114. In a Lonely Place by Dorothy B Hughes (1947) 222 pp Thriller / AAC
115. The Furrows by Namwali Serpell (2022) 266 pp Fiction / ANC / Zambia
116. Prophet Song by Paul Lynch (2023) 309 pp Fiction
117. The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams (2020) 419 pp Fiction
118. So Late in the Day by Claire Keegan (2023) 47 pp Fiction
119. Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982 by Cho Nam-Joo (2016) 163 pp Fiction / South Korea
120. The Lonely Skier by Hammond Innes (1947) 176 pp Thriller
121. The Covenant of Water by Abraham Verghese (2023) 715 pp Fiction ANC / Ethiopia
122. Old God's Time by Sebastian Barry (2023) 261 pp Fiction
123. Black Butterflies by Priscilla Morris (2023) 278 pp Fiction / Bosnia
124. We Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo (2013) 290 pp Fiction ANC/ Zimbabwe
125. Our Town by Thornton Wilder (1938) 114 pp Drama
126. Tom Lake by Ann Patchett (2023) 309 pp Fiction

Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 9:44 pm

Books Completed Q4

127. Study for Obedience by Sarah Bernstein (2023) 189 pp Fiction
128. The Night of the Hunter by Davis Grubb (1953) 246 pp Thriller
129. New Selected Poems by Philip Levine (1991) 292 pp Poetry
130. The End of Everything by Katie Mack (2020) 210 pp Non-Fiction
131. The Left-Handed Woman by Peter Handke (1976) 67 pp Fiction / Austria
132. Our Lady of the Nile by Scholastique Mukasonga (2012) 250 pp Fiction / ANC / Rwanda
133. Luck is the Hook by Imtiaz Dharker (2018) 122 pp Poetry / Pakistan
134. Black Water by Joyce Carol Oates (1992) 154 pp Fiction / 1001
135. The House at Sea's End by Elly Griffiths (2011) 353 pp Thriller
136. The Bee Sting by Paul Murray (2023) 643 pp Fiction
137. The Conquest of Plassans by Emile Zola (1874) 302 pp Fiction 150Y Challenge 1/150
138. The Dreadful Monster and its Poor Relations by Julian Hoppit (2021) 223 pp Non-Fiction
139. The Master of Ballantrae by RL Stevenson (1889) 228 pp Fiction 150Y Challenge 2/150
140. The Napoleon of Notting Hill by GK Chesterton (1904) 192 pp Fiction 150Y Challenge 3/150

141. The Heavens May Fall by Unity Dow (2006) 191 pp Thriller / ANC / Botswana
142. The Life of a Useless Man by Maxim Gorky (1908) 284 pp Fiction 150 Y Challenge 4/150
143. Western Lane by Chetna Maroo (2023) 161 pp Fiction
144. The Perfect Nine by Ngugi Wa Thiongo (2018) 227 pp Poetry ANC
145. Pearl translated by Gawain Poet (1390) 103 pp Poetry BAC
146. Bel Canto by Ann Patchett (2001) 401 pp Fiction 150 Y Challenge 5/150
147. The Book of Paradise by Itzik Manger (1937) Fiction / Poland / 150 Y Challenge 6/150
148. Politics on the Edge by Rory Stewart (2023) 431 pp Non-Fiction
149. Something Fresh by P.G. Wodehouse (1915) 275 pp Fiction / 150 Y Challenge 7/150
150. Around the World in 80 Books by David Damrosch (2021) 443 pp Non-Fiction

Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 9:49 pm

African Reading Challenge 2023


January - NORTH AFRICA read 5
February - LUSOPHONE LIT read 2
March - ADICHIE or EMECHETA read 1
April - THE HORN OF AFRICA read 1
June - EAST AFRICA - Read 3
July - ACHEBE or Okri
December - WEST AFRICA read 1

Total : 25

Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 9:52 pm


January - Rosemary Sutcliff & Fred D'Aguiar Eagle of the Ninth by Sutcliff, Bloodlines by D'Aguiar
February - Novellas & Short Stories - The Lost Art of Sinking by Booth, Male Tears by Myers
March - Vita Sackville-West & Tariq Ali
April - British Queens - Anne Boleyn : 500 Years of Lies by Hayley Nolan
May - RF Delderfield & Jan Morris
June - Time Travel - Doctor Who : The Androids of Tara by David Fisher
July - Nadifa Mohamed & Tom Holt
August - Seafaring Stories - Winchelsea by Alex Preston
September - Campus Books - The Maidens by Alex Michaelides
October -
November - Pre-Elizabethan - Pearl by Gawain Poet; translated by Simon Armitage

Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 9:56 pm


January - YA Books - Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson
February - Richard Powers
March - Poetry - What Goes On : Selected and New Poems by Stephen Dunn
April - Ursula Hegi - Hotel of the Saints
May -
June - Wildcard - No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy
July - American Presidents - Profiles in Courage by John F Kennedy
August - Percival Everett - The Trees
September - Crime Queens - In a Lonely Place by Dorothy B Hughes
October -
November - Canadian Authors

Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 9:59 pm


150 years; 150 books; 150 authors; 15 months

1874 1889 1904 1908 1915 1937 2001

Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 10:00 pm


Countries : 56 (16 November 2023)

Create Your Own Visited Countries Map

Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 10:01 pm


Starting Stats of the Year :

Present TBR : 5,679 books
Pages to Read : 1,943,264
Average Book Length : 342.18

Books Read 149 (20 Nov 23)
Pages : 36,386
Pages per day : 112.30
Average Book Length : 244.20 pages
Female Authors : 62
Male Authors : 84
Various : 3
Countries Read : 56 (UK, Morocco, Tunisia, Albania, Algeria, Guyana, Ireland, USA. Libya, Sweden, Egypt, Russia, Netherlands, Angola, Canada, Italy, Iceland, Mozambique, Nigeria, Spain, Sudan, Vietnam, Japan, Kenya, Bulgaria, Venezuela, Brazil, France, Ghana, Chile, India, Burundi, Ukraine, Mexico, Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, DRC, Chad, Malaysia, Congo, Senegal, Cote D'Ivoire, Mali, Cyprus, South Africa, Zambia, South Korea, Ethiopia, Bosnia, Zimbabwe, Austria, Rwanda, Pakistan, Botswana, Poland)

Fiction : 79
Thriller : 18
Non-Fiction : 22
Sci-Fi/Fantasy : 1
Poetry : 23
Short Stories : 5
Drama : 1

1001 Books First Edition
Read 9 (336)

Nobel Winners
Read : (75)

Booker Winners
Read : (38)

Pulitzer Fiction Prize
Read 1 : (21)

Women's Prize
Read : 1 (8)

Books Added in 2023

442 (20 Nov 2023)

Books Read in 2023

149 (20 Nov 2023)

Books Culled in 2023

438 (20 Nov 2023)

Revised TBR : 5,534

Nov 18, 2023, 9:34 pm

Welcome to my 23rd Thread of 2023.

Nov 18, 2023, 9:52 pm

Happy New Thread!

Nov 18, 2023, 9:54 pm

Happy new thread Paul!

I hope you do find yourself in London before the end of 2023! And with that wee love Pip snug in your grip!

Nov 18, 2023, 9:56 pm

>14 SilverWolf28: Lovely to see you first, Silver. I am reading four books in the readathon this weekend with those featured in >1 PaulCranswick: & >2 PaulCranswick: joined by The Wars by Timothy Findley (for the American Author Challenge) and Politics on the Edge by Rory Stewart which I bought on Friday but am devouring greedily.

Nov 18, 2023, 9:57 pm

>15 quondame: Thank you, Susan. Indeed I do greatly hope so as I am going to be even more lonely from Wednesday when Belle joins the gang in the UK. xx

Nov 18, 2023, 10:00 pm

Happy new thread!

Nov 18, 2023, 10:01 pm

>18 amanda4242: Thank you dear Amanda. I don't know how you always know when I am making a new thread - seemingly before I do so myself! xx

Nov 18, 2023, 11:00 pm

Happy new thread!

Nov 18, 2023, 11:05 pm

>20 banjo123: Thank you, Rhonda. Always a pleasure to have you drop by. x

Nov 19, 2023, 1:17 am

Strange - I just purchased Around the World in 80 Books this last week. I thought it looked interesting. I started By the Sea but only read a few pages in it. I have packed it in my suitcase and intend to take it with me on my Thanksgiving trip to Montana. It will make sitting around in airports bareable.

Editado: Nov 19, 2023, 1:50 am

>22 benitastrnad: I will be starting By the Sea this week too, Benita. Have a safe trip. x

Nov 19, 2023, 4:33 am

Happy new thread, my friend.
And all the best for you and your family - they may not be near you, but they are in your heart and that matters more!

Nov 19, 2023, 5:43 am

Happy new thread!

>12 PaulCranswick: Some impressive book stats, Paul.

Nov 19, 2023, 6:16 am

>24 SirThomas: Thank you Thomas. Belle, Erni and I have a routine that we always take Sunday dinner together (in fairness Erni sometimes declines) and Belle and I have just had a nice meal together (I had Angus beef noodles and she had seafood risotto). I will miss that for the next few weeks before I get Hani back.

>25 figsfromthistle: Thanks Anita. The book stats are slightly behind but I will get them updated soon.

Nov 19, 2023, 6:57 am

Happy new thread, Paul!

Ditto what Thomas said >24 SirThomas:
I do hope you can be with your granddaughter very soon.

Nov 19, 2023, 7:01 am

Dropping down to greet you and congratulations on a new thread. I wish you luck on getting back to England by the end of the year. Now to go back and peruse the contents.

Nov 19, 2023, 7:53 am

>27 FAMeulstee: Thank you, Anita. I am hopeful that I can "escape" this place shortly!

>28 Kristelh: Thanks dear Kristel. x

Nov 19, 2023, 8:26 am

Happy new thread, Paul

Nov 19, 2023, 8:30 am

>30 jessibud2: Thank you, Shelley. x

Nov 19, 2023, 8:35 am


Nov 19, 2023, 1:05 pm

>32 PaulCranswick: What a determined look! I'm sure she knows where she's going.

Nov 19, 2023, 1:20 pm

>32 PaulCranswick: A person makes a public appearance! So much personality!

Nov 19, 2023, 1:40 pm

>1 PaulCranswick: Another new thread! My poor head is spinning.

Have a great week!

Nov 19, 2023, 3:59 pm

A familiar sight up top there, Paul. I'm sure you're longing to be back there and to see the little sprite in >32 PaulCranswick: in person. Happy new thread.

Nov 19, 2023, 5:43 pm

>33 CDVicarage: Yasmyne will have her hands full with Pip, I think, Kerry!

>34 quondame: Hani sent me a video at the same time in which she is also vocalizing. She seems to know what she is saying but it is a language I am not at all familiar with!

Nov 19, 2023, 5:47 pm

>35 ArlieS: Hahaha, sorry Arlie but I can only apologize for being happy about all your visits!

>36 Familyhistorian: Thank you, Meg. It is fairly obvious isn't it that I am itching to get back to good old Blighty?

Nov 19, 2023, 6:21 pm

>32 PaulCranswick:, She is so adorable!

Nov 19, 2023, 6:56 pm

Happy new thread, Paul. Yes to getting to see your new granddaughter as soon as possible!

Nov 19, 2023, 7:12 pm

>39 Kristelh: Thank you, Kristel. I am not at all impartial but I am inclined to agree with you.

>40 EllaTim: Thanks Ella. Always lovely to see you here. x

Nov 19, 2023, 7:37 pm

BOOK #148

Politics on the Edge by Rory Stewart
Date of Publication : 2023
Origin of Author : UK
Pages : 431 pp

Rory Stewart was unusual amongst modern politicians. He stood on principle and tried to make a real difference. His strengths were also his weaknesses - principle could grind into obstinacy, ideals often became hills to die on.

His decade in politics were tumultuous - continued war in Afghanistan, ISIS, IndyRef and Brexit - he entered parliament in 2010 and served in International Development, Environment and Justice (or Minister for Africa, Minister for Prisons and Minister for Flooding respectively and not in that order).

The view of things on the inside is revelatory if not entirely surprising. His dislike of Cameron, his disdain and distrust of Boris were apparent to most but his portraits of personalities such as John Kerry, Jeremy Hunt, Liz Truss, Rishi Sunak and Michael Gove are cutting but incisive. His frustration with a civil service that often sought to thwart initiatives and changes in policy was palpable.

Overriding all though was the sense that here is a good man, a man who profoundly cares for his country, was enthusiastic of serving those who voted for him to represent him and who was lost too soon to that same service by a BoJo's chicanery.


Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 10:04 pm


Next up will be 1915.

It was a year of World War and horrors. The Dardanelles, Neuve Chapelle and the Battle of Loos show the bravery of British, Anzac and Indian soldiers but emphasize the futility of that most attritional of wars. It was the year that poison gas was used in modern warfare firstly by the Germans on the Russian front with Britain quickly retaliating. It was also the year of Zeppelin raids, U-Boat menace (including the sinking of the Lusitania) and of the execution of Edith Cavell for helping British soldiers escape in Belgium. The British army first tried out the tank. With prescience of wars to come it was also the year that Einstein presented his relativity theories.

It was the year that Chaplin released "The Tramp" and much more shamefully Griffith released "The Birth of a Nation" supported by Woodrow Wilson and screened at the White House. He also married in 1915 and perhaps watched the awful movie together with his adoring bride. It was the year that women failed to get the vote in the USA (voted down in Congress) but succeeded in doing so in Denmark.

It was the year of the Armenian genocide.

Deaths included the poets Rupert Brooke and Julian Grenfell, plus figures such as Booker T. Washington, W.G. Grace and Keir Hardie.

Births included singers Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday, Edit Piaf and Ewan MacColl; actors Orson Welles, Anthony Quinn and Ingrid Bergman as well as disgraced political leaders John Profumo and Pinochet.
Writers born in 1915 included Patrick Leigh Fermor, Khushwant Singh, Herman Wouk, Saul Bellow, Fred Hoyle, Roland Barthes and Arthur Miller.

Books from 1915 :

The Good Soldier, The Voyage Out, The Thirty-Nine Steps, Vainglory, Of Human Bondage, Song of the Lark, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock, Victory, The Rainbow, The Valley of Fear, The Metamorphosis and North of Boston

I will be reading : Something Fresh by P.G. Wodehouse

Nov 19, 2023, 9:16 pm

Happy new thread, Paul - you can never go wrong with Wodehouse!

Nov 19, 2023, 9:53 pm

>44 ChrisG1: It is a few years since I read any of his books, Chris, but I am quickly falling in with his easy-flowing style, his erudite wit and the fun he gently pokes at what were ostensibly very much his own "type".

The ability to laugh at one's self is a quality that is sadly missing in much of today's think-skinned discourse.

Nov 20, 2023, 12:37 am

Happy New thread, Paul. Wonderful picture of Pip! Will you be heading to the UK for Christmas to meet wee Pip ? I hope so!

Nov 20, 2023, 4:38 am

>46 vancouverdeb: Thanks Deb. I am really hoping that I will be done and dusted here in December and can head on out. I want to plan to take maybe 50 or so books back with me so my forward planning needs to be good but I do have a goodly number of books in the UK.

I want to give that little cherub a hug.

Nov 20, 2023, 9:06 am

Happy new thread! I do love some Wodehouse every now and again.

>32 PaulCranswick: Awwwww! So cute!

Nov 20, 2023, 9:52 am

Happy New Thread Paul!! And Beautiful Pip! Starting off wonderful!!

Nov 20, 2023, 12:50 pm

>32 PaulCranswick: Oh, I love that face! She is just adorable.

Happy New Thread, Paul! Happy whatever!

Nov 20, 2023, 1:56 pm

>48 foggidawn: Lovely to see you here Foggi. Wodehouse is a great palate cleanser!

>49 hredwards: Thank you, Harold. She does certainly beautify my threads!

Nov 20, 2023, 1:57 pm

>50 alcottacre: Her chin is identical to her mother's chin and I can see both parents in that expressive little face.

Nov 20, 2023, 5:48 pm

>52 PaulCranswick: I can see both parents in that expressive little face. Which just goes to show that she is her own person! I do love the expressions that she gets on her face. I am sure you cannot wait to see her in person.

Nov 20, 2023, 6:22 pm

>53 alcottacre: There is something of both my daughters in her look and her looks, Stasia, but something else too that probably comes from Sam. I am sure that she is going to be quite the little madam.

Nov 20, 2023, 6:35 pm

Happy new one, Paul!

Nov 20, 2023, 6:59 pm

>55 drneutron: Thank you, DocRoc

Nov 20, 2023, 7:11 pm

>32 PaulCranswick: Bawwwww, what a cutie!

Happy new thread, Paul!

Nov 20, 2023, 7:59 pm

>57 bell7: Thank you, Mary - I certainly think so too and I am of course completely impartial!

Nov 21, 2023, 9:35 am

Happy new thread, Paul! (Well, newish, at least!)

Nov 21, 2023, 10:32 am

I'm also hoping you get to see your grand daughter before the year is out. I'm now in Bangkok and even visited a Kinokuniya today, No purchases though as I have enough e-books to keep me company for the next couple of weeks.

Nov 21, 2023, 4:07 pm

>59 thornton37814: Lovely to see you, Lori. I have missed you being a little more inactive this year. x

>60 avatiakh: One country away, that is a shame, Kerry - we are more hospitable than Thailand! I would be lost here without my Kinokuniya and the longer serving staff are old friends already. Enjoy the rest of your travels and keep safe. xx

Nov 21, 2023, 4:09 pm

>54 PaulCranswick: I am absolutely positive she is going to be the queen bee and let everyone know it! (at least until more grandkids come along, but even then. . .)

Nov 21, 2023, 4:41 pm

>62 alcottacre: You could well be right, Stasia, you does seem to have quite the personality for someone barely 2 months old.

Nov 21, 2023, 6:16 pm

Happy new thread, Paul! I hope to get to Wodehouse someday. I know my father really enjoyed him.

Nov 21, 2023, 6:25 pm

Here's the Thanksgiving Readathon:

Nov 21, 2023, 6:42 pm

>32 PaulCranswick: Hello Paul. Pip is adorable, such a cute baby!

Nov 21, 2023, 7:29 pm

>61 PaulCranswick: Sometimes life is just busy!

Nov 22, 2023, 12:35 am

>64 atozgrl: He is as Susan pointed out of his time in world view, Irene, but the writing style is so easy flowing.

>65 SilverWolf28: My word Silver doesn't time fly - Thanksgiving already!

Nov 22, 2023, 12:37 am

>66 mdoris: Thank you Mary. This is one issue I will be conceding in argument!

>67 thornton37814: Doesn't it just, Lori? xx

Editado: Nov 23, 2023, 1:29 am

I have been around the threads of my American friends today giving my own appreciation for their friendship and presence in the group. For those such as Marianne and Benita without a thread and for any of my pals that I have unwittingly overlooked in my flit across the threads:

Happy Thanksgiving from an appreciative non-celebrator.

Nov 22, 2023, 9:38 pm

>42 PaulCranswick: Nice review Paul. I just finished that one myself though in the states it is called How Not to Be a Politician. Really enjoyed it and share your opinion of a dedicated public servant undone by unworthy politics.

Nov 23, 2023, 1:29 am

>71 Oberon: Thank you, Erik. It was very readable too wasn't it?
Great to see you here my dear fellow.

Nov 23, 2023, 7:52 am

Hooray for the best Book Club in the universe! ❤️

I just started Prophet Song... 😁

Nov 23, 2023, 7:55 am

>1 PaulCranswick: I love the idea of this book and have added it to the TBR list.

Happy new thread! I am hopelessly behind on thread visiting after a busy fall but on this traditional US day of thanksgiving, I wanted to let my LT family know that I am grateful for them.

Pip is adorable!

Nov 23, 2023, 10:02 am

Happy new thread Paul!

Nov 23, 2023, 10:21 am

Thursday orisons, PC.

Nov 23, 2023, 11:18 am

>73 msf59: Indeed Mark!
I am sure that you will appreciate Prophet Song mate.

>74 witchyrichy: Lovely to see you, Karen. I am honored to be part of the family xx.

Belle has joined her sister, her mother and her niece in the UK and sent me a couple of shots of Pip that I will try to share shortly.

Nov 23, 2023, 11:18 am

>75 humouress: Thanks neighbor.

>76 richardderus: Thank you, dear fellow.

Nov 23, 2023, 12:04 pm

>42 PaulCranswick: Your book bullet scored, but only tentatively - it's unlikely to be available from libraries here, and I continue to try hard to avoid buying books I'll only read once.

>71 Oberon: Thanks for the alternate title. It's probably more likely to be found under that name here, if it can be found at all.

>70 PaulCranswick: Happy Thanksgiving, even though neither you nor I actually celebrate it.

Nov 23, 2023, 12:16 pm

>42 PaulCranswick: I do think it is a good read, Arlie and you certainly do get a sense of a good man thwarted in a system that doesn't want change.

Over the years I have come to treat today as a time for the LT group to be thankful for each other and I am certainly thankful that I stumbled upon this place in 2011.

Nov 23, 2023, 4:19 pm

>77 PaulCranswick: Yay for more Pip pictures!

Happy whatever, Paul!

Nov 23, 2023, 4:27 pm

Hi Paul, hope you are well despite being without Hani and the kids, Pip is gorgeous mate and will have you wrapped around her little finger. Things are not good at the moment, i will explain more on my thread, Karen and I are fine but very stressed at the moment.

Hope to see you soon, more likely in 2024 mate when we can chew the fat and put the world to rights, lol.

Nov 23, 2023, 5:47 pm

>81 alcottacre: Within the next hour or so, I will put up at least one new Pip photo, Stasia.

>82 johnsimpson: John I am a bit concerned to hear that times are a bit tough. I will go over to your place presently.

Nov 23, 2023, 6:04 pm

>80 PaulCranswick: I have to say that I am thankful for having found my way back to LT this year, and for having joined the wonderful 75ers. And especially thankful to you for your warm welcome to the group!

Nov 23, 2023, 6:39 pm

It will be great if you can head to the UK for Christmas, and permanently , Paul! I sure hope that happens. I'll look forward to Pip's latest picture.

Nov 23, 2023, 8:03 pm

>84 atozgrl: I'm blushing, Irene. You have fitted into the group exceptionally well, I must say. xx

>85 vancouverdeb: Thank you Deb. There are so many things I love about this place but it is about time to go home.

Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 10:02 pm



Nov 23, 2023, 9:07 pm


Not a fan of group photos.

Nov 23, 2023, 9:22 pm

>87 PaulCranswick: Oh my, such an interesting pair of faces!
I'm sure you have your favorite too!

Editado: Nov 23, 2023, 9:35 pm

>86 PaulCranswick: Thank you, Paul! Now I'm the one who's blushing.

>88 PaulCranswick: I love that picture!

Nov 24, 2023, 3:31 am

>87 PaulCranswick: >88 PaulCranswick: Lovely photos. These are bringing back the time that Toby was that age - if our experience is anything to go by you have a wonderful time ahead, Grandad!

Editado: Nov 24, 2023, 4:59 am

>89 quondame: I am very close to my daughters, Susan, but I have a sneaky feeling that the newest member of the team may have a strong call upon my affections.

Nov 24, 2023, 6:31 am

>90 atozgrl: Thank you, Irene. I do think that we are both lucky to have found the 75ers.

>91 CDVicarage: I'm still convinced that I am nowhere near old enough to be a Grandad, Kerry! Unfortunately my mental arithmetic is unimpaired and tells otherwise!

Nov 24, 2023, 7:04 am


443. Day by Michael Cunningham
444. Once a Monster by Robert Dinsdale
445. There are More Things by Yara Rodrigues Fowler
446. The Trials of Harry Truman by Jeffrey Frank
447. The Movement by Petra Hulova
448. The Radical Potter by Tristram Hunt
449. Are You Happy Now by Hanna Jameson
450. Powers and Thrones by Dan Jones
451. Strangers Drowning by Larissa MacFarquhar
452. North Woods by Daniel Mason
453. Little Boy by John Smith
454. The Cartel by Don Winslow

I am happy with my stash today. A couple of potential Pulitzer winners, a couple of great new British literature releases, 2 new releases that caught my eye by writers I am unfamiliar with, a good thriller and a celebrated Czech work of dystopia. Political biography, historical biography, a sweeping history by a reliable historian and a work of ethics/philosophy which often pull me in.

Nov 24, 2023, 3:09 pm

>32 PaulCranswick: >87 PaulCranswick: Smiley girl. >88 PaulCranswick: Ha. So funny. 'Get out of my shot'.

>42 PaulCranswick: I nodded most of the way through this. I did have a ticket to hear him speak (not about the book, but as part of a series called 'Here I Stand'), but family from Ireland were in London, so dined with them, though I did manage to stream it and it was excellent. The link was limited time, or I'd have posted.

Nov 24, 2023, 3:11 pm

>88 PaulCranswick: Not really, is she? She'll grow accustomed to it...unless she grows up to be Auntie Belle mk 2, that is.

Nov 24, 2023, 3:13 pm

>94 PaulCranswick: mmm

#447 makes me a little suspicious. Utopian dystopias have this way of coming true, like The Handmaid's Tale....

Nov 24, 2023, 4:46 pm

>87 PaulCranswick: Oh, I love her smile!

>88 PaulCranswick: Nope, she does not like sharing the attention.

>94 PaulCranswick: My weekly haul is over on the 'This Just In' thread if you want to take a peek. I can honestly say that I have not read a single one of the books in your haul, so I have a lot to look forward to in reading your reviews of them! Nice haul again, Juan.

Nov 24, 2023, 4:48 pm

>95 Caroline_McElwee: I get that she doesn't yet want to share the limelight, Caroline.

I am pretty sure that it was your thread that tipped me off about the Rory Stewart book. His work on international aid, improving the prison service, working on flood defences and in general being for the conservation of countryside spaces mark him out as a thoroughly decent man in an arena in which good men tend not to thrive.

>96 richardderus: There are signs that she has a soulmate in Belle already, RD. I video called the girls yesterday (Belle, Yasmyne and Pip are in my Sheffield - Hani is staying with a couple (Dave and Ryan) she is good friends with and cooks for - lucky fellows) and when I connected Pip was seemingly having a tantrum moment. Belle picked her up and there was silence instantly.

Nov 24, 2023, 4:50 pm

>98 alcottacre: I will go and look at your latest additions, Juana.

In fairness most of the books are fairly recent publications but I get the distinct feeling that there are some winners there!

Nov 24, 2023, 5:38 pm

>100 PaulCranswick: I hope that they are all winners!

Nov 24, 2023, 5:57 pm

>97 richardderus: I missed your second post up there somehow, RD. A world where physical attraction is suppressed seems a lesser place to be honest don't you think?

Nov 24, 2023, 5:59 pm

>99 PaulCranswick: Yeup...Belle mk 2!

>102 PaulCranswick: It sounds GHASTLY to me, but then again I'm a man so odds are it would do.

Nov 24, 2023, 5:59 pm

>101 alcottacre: They won't all be for sure but I am picking up less duds these days - mainly thanks to warnings received in the group!

Nov 24, 2023, 6:01 pm

>103 richardderus: The range of expressions is also disturbing, marking out the little terror as a clone of her only Aunt.
For me too but I probably need a bit of assistance in that regard with my good lady spending so much time away!

Editado: Nov 24, 2023, 9:01 pm

>87 PaulCranswick: What a darling smile on Pip, Paul! What a sweetie ! I am so glad that you will soon met her. Nice to see Belle smiling, even if Pip decided against it.

Nice haul, Paul. I have a hold at the library on Day by Micheal Cunningham. I'm not sure who tipped me towards that author, because I've not read anything by him as yet, nor do I know his works at all.

Hmm, I think it may have been Richard, as I see he has given Day 4 stars.

Nov 24, 2023, 10:49 pm

>106 vancouverdeb: I do love that photo, Deb. She is such an expressive little girl.

Richard is normally a fairly sound recommender of novels, Deb, but please don't tell him that I said so!

Nov 25, 2023, 4:09 am

>61 PaulCranswick: We are enjoying Bangkok, though this is the first time that I noticed that Asian cats have a gene that sometimes means a shortened tail or just a stump. We visited a pet market today which was really interesting, such a variety of animals and birds.

Nov 25, 2023, 5:15 am

>108 avatiakh: It is quite the city Bangkok, Kerry, isn't it? I prefer my own slightly less frantic Kuala Lumpur! The food in Thailand is always something to savour too.
Safe and (continued) enthralling journey. xx

Nov 25, 2023, 8:59 am

A bit lonely today - my first Saturday without Belle so I hit the bookstore again.

455. The Owl and the Nightingale by Simon Armitage
456. The Narrow Road to the Deep North and Other Travel Sketches by Matsuo Basho
457. Poor by Caleb Femi
458. Salvation of a Saint by Keigo Higashino
459. Black Rain by Masuji Ibuse
460. Typical American by Gish Jen
461. The Salt Road by Jane Johnson
462. A Year With Hafiz by Hafiz / Daniel Ladinsky
463. Rickshaw Boy by Lao She
464. Out of the Silent Planet by C.S. Lewis
465. The Rock Blaster by Henning Mankell
466. American By Day by Derek B Miller
467. Slaughterhouse Farm by T. Orr Munro
468. Blue Light Yokohama by Nicolas Obregon
469. Istanbul by Orhan Pamuk
470. The Invisible by Peter Papathanasiou
471. My Uncle Napoleon by Iraj Pezeshkzad
472. Child of Fortune by Yoko Tsushima

Nov 25, 2023, 11:04 am

>110 PaulCranswick: Wow that's quite a haul Paul.

I went for quality and not quantity for my xmas pressie to myself, as the Folio Society have just published an edition of Calvino's Invisible Cities which should land next week. I have a lot of their books, but nothing in recent years - this though, I couldn't resist, it's a favourite book.

I hadn't realised Belle had headed to the UK, not surprising you are missing the family - will you join them for Christmas?

Nov 25, 2023, 11:23 am

>108 avatiakh: Mmm ... I suspect it's not a gene which causes that.

Nov 25, 2023, 11:34 am

Hi Paul, and happy new thread! Number twenty three in 2023, fantastic.

>32 PaulCranswick: Pip is a real pip for sure. Cute pic.

>43 PaulCranswick: I’ve read two from that list, The Thirty-Nine Steps and The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock.

>87 PaulCranswick: Another cute pic. Well. I bet they’re all cute, right?

>88 PaulCranswick: I spoke too soon, although that’s cute, just not happy. Belle and Yasmyne look wonderful. I bet Hani is just as happy to be holding Pip as to being in the pic.

>110 PaulCranswick: I have all three of the Space Trilogy by C.S. Lewis, all in mass market paperbacks, a college graduation gift in 1975.

Nov 25, 2023, 12:19 pm

Hi Paul, i have posted why i have been absent, it has done me good to get it off my chest but i may pay dearly for it. If you read between the lines you will guess what happened and you can PM me.

Nov 25, 2023, 4:46 pm

>111 Caroline_McElwee: I found it a bit of a strange book, Caroline, but Calvino never made it easy for his readers. But wow what an edition!

Hani will return here first and the intention is to return there together.

>112 humouress: Probably right, Nina.

Nov 25, 2023, 4:51 pm

>113 karenmarie: I loved that, wait! Hahaha, I agreed actually!

I almost bought all three of the books too yesterday but I only went in to look at a couple of Japanese books and had not really planned to splurge so stereotypically.

>114 amanda4242: You knew I would right, Amanda! What a beautiful book it is too; glossy and beautifully illustrated by Clive Hicks-Jenkins who definitely deserves a shout out.

Nov 25, 2023, 4:52 pm

>115 johnsimpson: I had actually gone to your thread before coming here, John, as I saw you had posted.
You will not lose a friend in me, buddy, I don't give up on my loved ones either.

Nov 25, 2023, 7:59 pm

Pip is quite the cutie!

Nov 25, 2023, 9:02 pm

>110 PaulCranswick: Nice haul again today, Paul! I am sorry that you are lonely. Not only will the books keep you company, but we will too.

I read Black Rain several years ago. It is probaby due for a re-read at this point!

Nov 26, 2023, 5:19 am

>119 banjo123: We almost always find ourselves in agreement, Rhonda and this is no exception!

>120 alcottacre: I filled my day today in that my assistant at work - the very able and dedicated Mr. Tay lost his mum earlier this week to cancer and today was the funeral service 3 hours away in a small town called Segamat in Johor. I surprised him together with a colleague Harry Kim representing the company and paying our respects. The service and the cultural customs were fascinating too.

I am always available for shared reads as you know dear lady!

Nov 26, 2023, 8:13 am


November 1986 - Strong Persuader

This was one of the first five music CDs I bought in 1988 when I got my first player. (Oh Mercy Bob Dylan, Traveling Wilburys, Tanita Tikaram and Van the Man's greatest were the others). The playing and the emotional charge of his blues playing blew me away.

I song I used to sing myself was his brilliant "I Wonder"

Nov 26, 2023, 8:21 am


November 1987 - Cloud Nine

Jeff Lynne helped fuel a late career revival for George Harrison with palpably his most successful record for a decade and a half. He made close to the top of the charts with "Got My Mind Set On You" and the album also included the song "When We Was Fab" as catchy as it was grammatically excruciating.

Nov 26, 2023, 8:51 am


November 1988 - American Dream

Crosby Still and Nash were always improved by Neil Young. He added a slight edge missing in some of the stuff without him. Not on a par with the first album they produced as a foursome but it isn't without merit and I still play the catchy title track often.

Nov 26, 2023, 9:02 am


November 1989 - Boomerang

Somewhat forgotten classic this scatty, baroque and chaotic record was made on a ranch just outside Cadiz and the influence of the host country is obvious.

Wonderful stuff - especially "Standing There"

Nov 26, 2023, 9:16 am


November 1990 Cake

Another obscure one here. I liked this group back in the days before I headed to these shores but they never quite made it.

This is the biggest hit off the album "Obscurity Knocks" This November release date is for the US as the album was released a few months earlier in the UK.

Nov 26, 2023, 9:20 am


November 1991 - Achtung Baby

Their last really good record and includes possibly their best song - "One"

Nov 26, 2023, 9:28 am


November 1992 - Harvest Moon

Isn't this incarnation of the Canadian legend that is most blissfully enjoyable? Back to the days of his evocative "Harvest" - a perfect and mellow companion piece. "Harvest Moon"

Nov 26, 2023, 9:37 am


November 1993 - The Red Shoes

I didn't much care for the album before this one but this is a really good and solid record. Stylistically interesting, sophisticated and as usual Kate can cut through to the core as she does with "And So Is Love" and "Moments of Pleasure" - this is the latter

Nov 26, 2023, 9:47 am


November 1994 - The Impossible Bird

Regulars here will know of my admiration for the songwriting skills of Nick Lowe. This song has been covered by a number of artists including memorably by Johnny Cash. - "The Beast in Me"

Nov 26, 2023, 10:00 am


November 1995 - The Ghost of Tom Joad

Do I choose the ethereal beauty of Enya or the blue collar ballsy balladeering of Springsteen - echoes of Steinbeck wins out. This is a live version of the title song:

Nov 26, 2023, 12:44 pm

Thinking of you Paul. Take care my friend!

Oh also fully agree that Pip is a major cutie.

Nov 26, 2023, 3:44 pm

>123 PaulCranswick: Hadn't given that album an instant's thought in thirty-five years! I did like "When We Was Fab" back then because it was nostalgic for the 60s and, in Raygun's Murruhkuh, so was I.

Nov 26, 2023, 4:37 pm

>132 mdoris: Thanks Mary. xx

>133 richardderus: George having a bit of a renaissance was also fab, RD, as he was so often unsung relatively speaking in comparison to the more lauded songwriters alongside him.

Nov 26, 2023, 4:55 pm

PROPHET SONG by Paul Lynch has just won the 2023 Booker Prize.

The panel got it right, I think.

Nov 26, 2023, 5:01 pm

Just posted that at on my own thread . I was rooting for either Prophet Song or The Bee Sting . Watched it livestream just now too

Nov 26, 2023, 5:08 pm

>136 vancouverdeb: I thought it was head and shoulders the best of the four shortlisted books I have read, Deb. I liked Western Lane and The Bee Sting but felt that Sebastian Barry and Tan Twan Eng's books were better than those two but not Lynch's book.

Best book of 2023 for me is still The Covenant of Water.

Nov 26, 2023, 5:16 pm

I don't share many photos of myself these days as I am a bit sensitive about my body shape but this is from yesterday (Sunday) and my two colleagues are Tay (grieving his dear mother) on the left and Harry Kim on the right who accompanied me on the three hour journey to pay our respect and support our friend.

Nov 26, 2023, 5:17 pm

The last post was the 6,000th on my threads this year. A big, big thank you to all who have kept me company in 2023 - you are all very dear to me.

Editado: Nov 26, 2023, 6:17 pm

>135 PaulCranswick: >136 vancouverdeb: I just posted it on my thread too! I am so happy that Prophet Song won!

>139 PaulCranswick: Yay, Paul!

Nov 26, 2023, 7:19 pm

>140 alcottacre: I didn't count them, Stasia, but you must be close to the most posts here apart from myself. xx

Nov 26, 2023, 8:41 pm

Long overdue update on the thread posting stats.
All threads with over 100 posts as at 8 pm LT time:

1 PaulCranswick 6,004
2 richardderus 5,038
3 katiekrug 4,657
4 msf59 3,998
5 scaifea 2,864
6 karenmarie 2,810
7 alcottacre 2,591
8 laurelkeet 2,419
9 bell7 2,182
10 FAMeulstee 2,070
11 CrazyMamie 1,968
12 figsfromthistle 1,898
13 Familyhistorian 1,894
14 jnwelch 1,843
15 klobrien2 1,613
16 MickyFine 1,570
17 jessibud2 1,553
18 EBT1002 1,505
19 curioussquared 1,483
20 RebaRelishesReading 1,465
21 vancouverdeb 1,216
22 LizzieD 1,208
23 BLBera 1,163
24 Berly 1,124
25 quondame 1,108
26 The_Hibernator 999
27 Carmenere 936
28 drneutron 933
29 Whisper1 929
30 foggidawn 890
31 streamsong 872
32 lyzard 831
33 mahsdad 810
34 SandyMacpherson 798
35 johnsimpson 728
36 humouress 709
37 kristelh 702
38 ursula 699
39 storeettlr 680
40 atozgrl 671
41 Caroline_McElwee 659
42 SirThomas 632
43 mstrust 629
44 laytonwoman3rd 624
45 norabelle414 617
46 SandDune 615
47 PlatinumWarlock 608
48 thornton37814 584
49 Dreamweaver 583
50 ArlieS 567
51 weird_O 544
52 witchyrichy 477
53 ffortsa 468
54 mdoris 438
55 Squeaky_Chu 437
56 copperskye 436
57 Donna828 428
58 banjo123 418
59 avatiakh 377
60 Ella Tim 349
61 swynn 332
62 Whiteraven.17 327
63 Ravenswoodwitch 307
64 hredwards 302
65 ronincats 286
66 sibylline 286
67 AMQS 285
68 Chatterbox 264
69 cbl_tn 261
70 DianaNL 228
71 oberon 215
72 CDVicarage 210
73 tiffin 209
74 vivians 206
75 amanda4242 205
76 fuzzi 201
77 lyndainoregon 195
78 kac522 181
79 LovingLit 169
80 Rbeffa 165
81 chelle 158
82 SilverWolf28 157
83 arubabookwoman 151
84 aktakukac 145
85 chrisG 142
86 booksaplenty 140
87 sirfurboy 125
88 lycomayflower 124
89 torontoc 124
90 cecilturtle 122
91 PersephonesLibrary 122
92 PawsforThought 108
93 Dmulvee 107

Nov 26, 2023, 8:48 pm

Hey Paul, thanks for the stats, love ‘em.

Did you see my PM from the other day? Can you send me your address? I want to make the Christmas selections and send out the notices. (Probably tomorrow, my time). Thanks!

Nov 26, 2023, 9:02 pm

>143 mahsdad: Welcome, Jeff - you have had a pretty productive year, no?

I did see it and I am in a quandary as the books will clearly reach Sheffield but I am worried that they will arrive before I do. Will PM shortly.

Nov 26, 2023, 10:20 pm

>138 PaulCranswick: Great pic, Paul! Am I seeing correctly that Tay is wearing shoe protectors?

>142 PaulCranswick: Thanks for the stats, Paul. Congrats on 6000 posts!

Nov 26, 2023, 10:24 pm

Congrats Paul on your statistics! and everyone else as well.

Nov 26, 2023, 10:43 pm

>128 PaulCranswick: Harvest Moon is one of my favorite songs by Neil Young and the video you chose is one of my favorites of anyone. I lived quite close to the place where the video was filmed many years ago which adds to the charm for me. Drove Skyline Boulevard countless times over my life.

Nov 27, 2023, 12:15 am

>145 figsfromthistle: All his family were wearing shoe protectors, Anita, I have absolutely no idea why. When they walked behind the hearse out of the township and onto the transport to the Memorial Park they kept them on too.

>146 Kristelh: You have had your best posting year or very nearly so, Kristel and it has been great to see you so active in 2023 (long may it continue).

Nov 27, 2023, 12:16 am

>147 RBeffa: I love the fact that you often have an anecdote for a song, Ron! When Young is in a gentle mood the product is beautiful.

Nov 27, 2023, 12:21 am

>142 PaulCranswick:


6 MARY (bell7)



Nov 27, 2023, 12:56 am

>142 PaulCranswick:






1 PAUL (Malaysia)
2 ANITA (Netherlands)
3 LIZ (Australia)
5 NINA (Singapore)
6 URSULA (Germany)

Nov 27, 2023, 1:09 am

>138 PaulCranswick: nice pic - you don't have to hide...
>142Thanks for the stats, Paul - and I'm pleased with my ranking on the answer to all the questions of the universe....

Nov 27, 2023, 2:08 am

>152 SirThomas: Why thank you Thomas.

You are a beloved fixture around here already!

Nov 27, 2023, 10:02 am

>142 PaulCranswick: Thanks for doing the stats, Paul! I have been sitting comfortably around #30 all year long, I think.

Nov 27, 2023, 1:05 pm

Hi Paul, great stats, thanks mate. I cannot believe that i am still in the top 40 and no 4 in non-North Americans despite the poor year i have had.

Nov 27, 2023, 2:40 pm

Nice to see the stats, Paul. I see what you mean about the Canadian posters.

Nov 27, 2023, 3:24 pm

>138 PaulCranswick: You look fine for someone our age, PC. After all there's nothing drooping off you, no trouser-bulge up under your armpits, and you can wear actual this success, boyo, I got none of them things and am only a half-decade ahead o' you.

Nov 27, 2023, 3:28 pm

>142 PaulCranswick: Thanks for the stats, Paul!
It might be the first time I entered the top 10.

Nov 27, 2023, 5:08 pm

>135 PaulCranswick: I will get to this soon Paul, based on LTiers who have read it, sounds like they got it right.

>138 PaulCranswick: what a gentle gesture to offer a colleague. I'm guessing his mother departed far to young.

Nov 27, 2023, 6:52 pm

>149 PaulCranswick: Thank you Paul. My head is full of a lifetime of songs and I seem to find connections everywhere. My best buddy Tim who recently passed away turned me on to that video 6 or 7 years ago. I hadn't seen it before but when i watched it i said to myself, i know where that is. I know that place. Strange connections. There is a redwood forest that runs along that skyline. I grew up on the coast side and on the other side are communities facing san francisco bay and as you follow skyline south you will be above silicon valley, which was mostly fruit orchards when i was a kid. We would go camping in the parks in those redwoods.

Nov 27, 2023, 7:01 pm

Hello, Paul! Very pleased to see that even though my posting numbers aren't quite up to last year's (my best-ever), I make a top 10 AND top 6 list for busiest threads.

Nov 27, 2023, 7:45 pm

>154 foggidawn: Lovely to see you Foggi. You are always quite high in both lists (thread and books read). xx

>155 johnsimpson: There has been a bit of a tail off in terms of activity from the UK and Europe and elsewhere mate. Susan, Charlotte, Nathalie, Megan and others are either not here or not as active as they once were. Your numbers are not bad considering everything going on, John!

Nov 27, 2023, 7:50 pm

>156 Familyhistorian: Meg, I love to keep a specific eye on the Canadian posters because most years we have a different person being the most active. You, Micky, Chelle, Ilana, Deb, Lori, Judy and even Valerie and my late friend Nancy have all taken turns as the busiest and Anita may continue that fine "tradition" this year.

>157 richardderus: Thanks RD, I am trying my best to stay in some sort of shape - although the shape keeps getting bigger!

Nov 27, 2023, 7:54 pm

>158 FAMeulstee: Maybe the first time this year, Anita, but I am pretty sure that you have been top ten in previous years. xx

>159 Caroline_McElwee: I am sure that you will enjoy the book, Caroline.

I think his mum was in her early seventies. Tay had spent the last months caring for her at home, together with his wife. His wife was particularly broken during the ceremony with tears streaming down her face throughout. He will come back to work tomorrow (Wednesday).

Nov 27, 2023, 7:57 pm

>160 RBeffa: I think that song is one to really appreciate in our autumnal years, Ron. I really enjoy sharing music likes and dislikes with you, my friend.

>161 bell7: You have always been one of my best buddies in the group Mary so I am obviously very happy to see you active in both reading and posting.

Nov 28, 2023, 12:58 am

>163 PaulCranswick: Maybe a tradition of the young ones taking over (not in my case, though, I'm even older than the curmudgeonly gentleman up thread ). Might be other factors though because some have moved on to different venues - like the category challenge.

Nov 28, 2023, 1:25 am

>166 Familyhistorian: I'm not sure that our group is getting any younger, Meg, although I will look into that. There are a number of our past members who were very active here but have migrated to other groups.

Editado: Nov 28, 2023, 11:47 am

I have started reading By the Sea by Abdulrazak Gurnah and it is another elegant gem. I use the word elegant to describe his writing and think of it as elegant like a Ralph Lauren gown is elegant. Clean, stripped down, seductive, but full of statement and purpose. His writing is like comparing Ralph Lauren to a Versace design. One is elegant and can be revealing, but the other is flashy and trashy. Gurnah's writing is the Ralph Lauren of the book world.

In the first pages of the first chapter he writes about the experience of applying for refugee status in the UK and the passage is riveting reading. The country that the subject is from is not named, but the experience of being a refugee is universal and I am sure that I will find out what country it is as I read the rest of the book. Gurnah ends these pages with this: "Do you remember that endless catalogue of objects that were taken away to Europe because they were too fragile and delicate to be left in the clumsy and careless hands of natives? I am fragile and precious too, a sacred work, too delicate to be left in the hands of natives, so now you'd better take me too. I joke, I joke." This passage is elegant in its appeal and heartbreaking in its effect.

I can't wait to read the rest of this book. It is going to be my airport reading on the way home from my Thanksgiving trip.

Nov 28, 2023, 11:48 am

>168 benitastrnad: I am stealing that recommendation from Paul's thread, Benita. It sounds like a book I need to read. Thanks for that.

Happy whatever, Paul!

Nov 28, 2023, 3:24 pm

>168 benitastrnad: What a lovely contrast to make, Benita, to exemplify Gurnah's craftsmanship. I'm not sure that everyone would agree with you that Versace is trashy and flashy (I would agree with you!) but the point is very well made.
I hope that I can finish it too before the end of the month - it is one of four books I am progressing nicely with.

>169 alcottacre: He is a author to savour, Stasia, in my opinion - one who rewards a careful reading. Certainly one of the more readable winners of the Nobel Prize recently.

Editado: Nov 28, 2023, 4:12 pm


November 1996 - Unchained

I own every studio album released by Johnny Cash and there were 67 of them plus a number of his iconic live recordings and a few compilations 75 records in all - he was one of my first musical loves due to 8-track players in my Dad's car.

His last flowering of musical creativity was aided and abetted by Rick Rubin and this was the second such collaboration and a good one. I really like the title track and also the verbal virtuosity of "I've Been Everywhere".

Editado: Nov 28, 2023, 4:22 pm


November 1997 - Lustra

In a stellar year for music this was a less than impressive month. Echobelly were a Britpop group not as cutting edge as some of their contemporaries but always listenable and with a lead singer pleasing on the eye. I remember playing this album quite a bit at the time. This is "The World is Flat"

Nov 28, 2023, 4:31 pm


November 1998 - Spirit

Always had a bit of a thing for Jewel. Honeyed describes nicely her vocal style and this is a very decent sophomore album. "Hand" was the most successful single.

Nov 28, 2023, 4:33 pm

>171 PaulCranswick: Was a Cash fan from pre-teens, still have some of him on vinyl Paul.

Nov 28, 2023, 4:43 pm


November 1999 - Wonderful

There is a show on BBC radio that is something of an institution - Desert Island Discs where celebs choose 8 audio recordings and a book that they would take to a desert island with them (presumably there is some way to play the bloody things). The show has been running fairly continuously since 1943. One of my 8 tracks would be "It Must Be Love" by Madness, but I always thought of them as a purely singles band. They returned after an absence of 14 years with this album which was retro but great fun. The standout is the hugely catchy "Lovestruck".

Nov 28, 2023, 4:45 pm

>174 Caroline_McElwee: He was quite enigmatic as a man wasn't he Caroline, but his output was simply incredible. Some of it was patchy but he was a unique voice in popular music.

Editado: Nov 28, 2023, 5:08 pm


November 2000 - A Day Without Rain

I have actually met Enya. I was introduced to her through a relative in Donegal in the mid 80s at a place called Leo's Bar famous for its music and I came to know that Leo Brennan was Enya's father. I remember being struck by her ethereal quality and it reappeared in her music. As charming as I could be in my younger days I didn't have the courage to try to charm her myself.

This song is "Wild Child" - she was anything but!

Nov 28, 2023, 7:49 pm

>177 PaulCranswick: My husband really likes Enya's music. It puts me to sleep, lol.

Nov 28, 2023, 8:09 pm

>178 alcottacre: It is often classed as new age music, Stasia, but has Gaelic and other folk elements that makes its layered sound uniquely hers. Of similar singers I actually prefer Loreena McKennitt to be honest.

Editado: Dez 4, 2023, 1:11 am


Editado: Dez 4, 2023, 1:12 am

Over the years I have hosted a number of reading challenges usually of a geographical bent. British, Asian, African etc.

In conjunction with my dear friend Stasia, I am planning to host a themed challenge next year on the subject of WAR.

I am certainly open to suggestions as always but I plan to have four civil wars which I have called "Internal Strife", 4 major themed wars, and 4 more general topics - 1 each per quarter.

Rough Sketch :

JANUARY - The Ancients (Greeks, Romans etc)
FEBRUARY - The American War of Independence
MARCH - The War of the Roses
APRIL - Wars of Religion
MAY - The Napoleonic Wars
JUNE - The English Civil War
JULY - Colonial Wars
AUGUST - World War Two
SEPTEMBER - The American Civil War
OCTOBER - American Follies (Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and the Gulf Wars)
NOVEMBER - World War One
DECEMBER - The Spanish Civil War
WILDCARD - Pick your own fight!

I have chosen the months for WW1 & WW2 to coincide with the end of each conflict.
The challenge would be fiction, non-fiction, memoirs etc all counting

I will gauge interest and then put up a planning thread.

Nov 28, 2023, 9:08 pm

>179 PaulCranswick: I also enjoy Lorena McKennitt, Paul, although I have not listened to a ton of her music. At least I do not fall asleep when listening to it!

>181 PaulCranswick: Thank you for hosting the challenge!

Nov 28, 2023, 9:24 pm

>182 alcottacre: Hahaha - soothing music can be well....soothing.

Welcome on the challenge - ok with the format?

Nov 28, 2023, 9:28 pm

>183 PaulCranswick: I am fine with the format, Paul.

Nov 28, 2023, 10:31 pm

>181 PaulCranswick: Yes please!

And allow me to hijack your thread for a moment to let people know I'm going to start making final selections for next year's BAC on Friday.

Nov 29, 2023, 1:03 am

>184 alcottacre: That's great sister!

>185 amanda4242: I will be so happy to have you along, Amanda.

Allowed of course - hijack away. I'm looking forward to seeing the final selections myself too.

Nov 29, 2023, 5:31 am

>181 PaulCranswick: I'm pretty rubbish at challenges Paul, but will certainly aim to participate on a couple of months next year.

Nov 29, 2023, 6:35 am

I plan to participate.

Nov 29, 2023, 6:59 am

>187 Caroline_McElwee: I have gotten to the point Caroline that I wanted to go off in a slightly different direction after concentrating geographically with my challenges over the last number of years. Having said that I shall still be looking at Linda and Amanda's American and British challenges and try to join in where I am able to.

>188 Kristelh: I look forward to your insight, Kristel. More freedom in a way next year by not worrying as to whether it will be fiction or non-fiction.

Nov 29, 2023, 10:20 am

>181 PaulCranswick: Great idea, PC, so many, many great reads have come out of the endless wars humaity loves to throw itself into.

Have a great time with it!

Nov 29, 2023, 10:27 am

>170 PaulCranswick:
I read more in By the Sea last night and it continues to be a delight to read. The author, Gurneh, is not soft in his opinion of the Colonial Powers. In fact he is quite critical. He refers to them in a way that is basically calling them looters and plunderers. The policies that they used to promote their own interests and to keep the indigenous peoples in their proper place is also discussed. This is going to be a very enlightening novel because it is not often that we (readers in the west) get to hear about the opinions and point-of-view of the indigenous peoples caught in the process of colonialization. His take on how colonies are exploited and how initiative is stifled is very precise and concise.

I was surprised to learn that Malaysia is part of this story. It will be interesting to hear what insights you can bring to that part of the story.

Gurneh is very eloquent in his presentation of that point-of-view. I am so impressed with his writing and quite agree that he is probably one of the more readable of the recent Nobel laureates. I will have some airport and airplane reading time today and hope to get much more read in this story. I can’t wait to learn how the various characters get entangled in the story to lead the main character to request asylum in the very country he is criticizing at the beginning of the book.

Nov 29, 2023, 10:35 am

>181 PaulCranswick: This is a cool idea & I'll definitely participate if you decide to go ahead.

Nov 29, 2023, 11:23 am

>190 richardderus: Conflict is compelling, RD. After 27 years of marriage I can confirm that utterly!

>191 benitastrnad: You are getting me excited about my own reading of it, Benita. It may be the first days or two of the month that I finish it though.

Nov 29, 2023, 11:24 am

>192 ChrisG1: I will definitely be proceeding with the challenge, Chris and it will be great to have you along.

Nov 29, 2023, 12:35 pm

>179 PaulCranswick: Hey Paul. I like both Enya and Loreena and all the Brennan clan's music.
Have you ever heard of Connie Dover? You should give her a listen, she is from Missouri, close to where I live and has several recordings available. She has a very nice voice.

Nov 29, 2023, 12:37 pm

>181 PaulCranswick: I would be interested in learning more. I've never done a challenge like this, so might need to learn the rules etc. Sounds like fun.

Nov 29, 2023, 12:43 pm

Hi Paul how do you send a Spoiler?
Thanks - can't find this on site.

Nov 29, 2023, 12:56 pm

>195 hredwards: I wasn't too familiar with Connie Dover, Harold so I shall go and have a look and listen and report back.

I have sung with some of the lesser known members of the Brennan family.

>196 hredwards: It is me, Harold, so that there is a complete absence of rules!
A different challenge will be featured every month with a wildcard available if you don't quite fancy that challenge. No problem though to read books that would fit the challenge in any month you like.

Editado: Nov 29, 2023, 12:59 pm

>197 m.belljackson: I am not great at explaining this sort of thing, Marianne, but I'll try.

Type the small triangular bracket then type "spoiler" and close bracket. Type what you want to hide and when you have finished type the small triangular bracket and then type "/spoiler and close the bracket.

Nov 29, 2023, 1:09 pm

>198 PaulCranswick: So for each month I just pick a book that fits that month's theme? Sounds fun. I think I will give it a try.

Nov 29, 2023, 1:12 pm

Happy whatever, Paul!

Nov 29, 2023, 1:24 pm

Paul - I enjoyed your Asian Challenge,
was not drawn to African one in fear of Genital Mutilation and treatment of women
by clans and Islam and other extremists,
and, now - for WAR -
I cannot fathom at all anyone wanting to read any more about the horrors of torture, rape, murder,
baby killing, and beheading that encompass the Daily News Media resulting
from the Hamas attacks.

Nov 29, 2023, 1:31 pm

>200 hredwards: You have it, Harold. Will be great to have you along, my friend.

>201 alcottacre: Thank you dear lady. xx

Nov 29, 2023, 1:38 pm

>202 m.belljackson: Dear Marianne, I can fully understand your feelings on the topics to be honest. I take the view that the best way to avoid future human folly is to understand its past ones. Not for the gory and gruesome details but for the causation that brought about the necessity of conflict. Tales of heroism and tragedy can also be compelling without being gratuitous don't you think?

The most demonic acts of inhumanity in the last century were the Holocausts and genocides wrought inter alia on the peoples of Cambodia as well as the Armenians and Jewish peoples. It is surely important that we read about these things and learn about their cruelties and don't forget them in order that the likelihood of re-occurrence is averted. The world is blinking already by virtue of what happened in Israel a few short weeks ago and timely reminder is needed.

Nov 29, 2023, 1:42 pm

>204 PaulCranswick: No. I think we have not learned anything about not repeating the past - otherwise you would not have that partial list of wars.

Men like to play WAR. Until that ends, nothing will change.

Nov 29, 2023, 2:27 pm

>205 m.belljackson: I am talking about reading books, Marianne, not wielding bayonets. If you don't care for the challenge you are free to skip it and I don't blame you at all for an aversion to books on such topics - perfectly understandable - but I am a peace loving man who does not take very kindly to being brandished as a warmonger because I suggest, in collaboration with a very decent and pacifistic lady, to have themed reads on the subject of conflicts.

Nov 29, 2023, 2:32 pm

>206 PaulCranswick: Huh? "brandished as a warmonger" where's that?

Nov 29, 2023, 2:48 pm


November 2001 - Laundry Service

A bit of a straight choice between Shakira and Shelby Lynne this month but I have chosen the former because Shelby's album was the weakest of the three she produced around this time.

The album has her international breakthrough single "Whenever, Wherever" which used to speed my journey to and from KL at the time.

Nov 29, 2023, 2:50 pm

>207 m.belljackson: I'm sorry Marianne but I take it as an implicit criticism that I would choose such a themed challenge. If no criticism was implied then I am sorry for being offended.

Nov 29, 2023, 3:02 pm


November 2002 - More Than You Think You Are

Matchbox Twenty are a favourite group of Hani. Not absolute vintage but decent. This is "Unwell"

Nov 29, 2023, 3:12 pm


November 2003 - The Soul Sessions

Joss Stone is soulful. This album is a brilliant and eclectic exploration of the music that forms collectively her "sound".

This is "The Chokin' Kind"

Nov 29, 2023, 3:18 pm


November 2004 - Lonely Runs Both Ways

I have an affection for Alison Krauss' delicate blue grass and it is well exemplified in this album. This is "Restless"

Editado: Nov 29, 2023, 3:24 pm


November 2005 - 12 Songs

Rick Rubin doing for Neil what he did for Johnny C. This is an album of stripped down brilliance and definitely my favourite record of his.

I love all the songs on this album but I have chosen "Man of God"

Nov 29, 2023, 4:06 pm

>209 PaulCranswick: No, I merely stated that I could not comprehend why people could bear to read more WAR
when the daily news media is already so devastating to read.

Nov 29, 2023, 4:09 pm

>214 m.belljackson: Ok then sorry for being so touchy. Not sleeping too well in my defence.

Nov 29, 2023, 4:37 pm

>215 PaulCranswick: okay - should I get all warmongered over your Ivan Doig assumption...?

Nov 29, 2023, 5:50 pm

>70 PaulCranswick: Happy belated Thanksgiving to you, too, Paul!

Nov 29, 2023, 6:34 pm

>216 m.belljackson: Hahaha I did simply point out that Ivan Doig is not a British Author.

>217 ocgreg34: Thank you Greg!

Nov 29, 2023, 7:19 pm

>218 PaulCranswick: Darling Paul - did you see my SPOILER response to that?

Nov 29, 2023, 7:53 pm

The December BAC thread is up!

Nov 29, 2023, 7:59 pm

>219 m.belljackson: I saw it Marianne. Everybody knows that 2 plus 2 is 12!

>220 amanda4242: I will go and have a look as I am looking forward to EM Forster.

Nov 29, 2023, 8:54 pm

>221 PaulCranswick: Fine for now - I'll add a Paul comment to BAC.

Nov 29, 2023, 9:07 pm

>221 PaulCranswick: I've been looking forward to him, too.

Nov 29, 2023, 9:51 pm

>222 m.belljackson: :D

>223 amanda4242: I have read three of his books. Where Angels Fear to Tread, Room With a View and A Passage to India - I really liked all of them. The last one the most.

Nov 29, 2023, 10:14 pm

>224 PaulCranswick: It is possible that I have only read The Machine Stops, and more than once. Pretty good for a 1909 tale.

Nov 30, 2023, 1:37 am

>225 RBeffa: That is one I don't own, Ron.

Nov 30, 2023, 10:56 am

All caught up again, Paul. Love the family pics, especially of your sweet Pip. I am excited that you will be meeting her in person soon. She will have you wrapped around her baby finger!

I’m in for the 2024 War challenge. Thanks to you and Stasia for that big undertaking. I am falling in the stats but that’s by choice. I’m very busy these days and have to guard my limited reading time.

Happy Almost December!

Nov 30, 2023, 11:15 am

>226 PaulCranswick: It is long out of copyright and you can read all 25 pages of it here for example in a pdf

Nov 30, 2023, 11:52 am

Just coming in to check in on you today, Paul. *wave*

Nov 30, 2023, 12:22 pm

>181 PaulCranswick: Hi Paul. I could have sworn I posted the other day, but it went missing. Nevertheless, I'm in for the 2024 War challenge as well. Might not participate every month, but I do have a few already on the shelf.

For WWI, I'll probably plan to read Pat Barker's Regeneration trilogy,

For the American Civil War, I have Jeff Shaara's Gods and Generals, his sequel to his Dad's The Killer Angels. Its been sitting on my bedside pile for over 10 years.

And for WWII, it might be time for a reread of one of my favorites in the "genre", Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo by Ted Lawson

Nov 30, 2023, 4:02 pm

>227 Donna828: Lovely to see you, Donna. You also know the magnetic power of grandchildren! Will be great to have you along for WAR.

>228 RBeffa: You are a star, Ron. I will definitely read that when I have the chance.

Nov 30, 2023, 4:03 pm

>229 alcottacre: Thank you sister. xx

>230 mahsdad: I am getting forgetful too, Jeff!

I haven't gotten started with planning yet but I am pretty sure that I have something for each month already on my overstocked shelves.

Nov 30, 2023, 4:29 pm

Last additions of November

473. The War Before Independence by Derek W. Beck
474. The Aleph by Jorge Luis Borges
475. Out in the Open by Jesus Carrasco
476. No Way Back by Theodor Fontane
477. The Black Notebook by Patrick Modiano
478. Leadership in War by Andrew Roberts
479. City of a Thousand Gates by Rebecca Sacks
480. Flesh-Coloured Dominoes by Zigmunds Skujins
481. Sabers and Utopias by Mario Vargas Llosa
482. The Ides of March by Thornton Wilder
483. Savages by Don Winslow
484. Tony and Susan by Austin Wright

Nov 30, 2023, 4:41 pm

>233 PaulCranswick:, I haven't read any of those nor do I have them on my shelf.

Nov 30, 2023, 4:48 pm

>233 PaulCranswick: Well neither did I until yesterday, Kristel (it is already December morning here).

Nov 30, 2023, 4:53 pm

>235 PaulCranswick: Happy December Paul. A new month, and I hope things come together for your flight back to your loved ones.

Nov 30, 2023, 4:55 pm

>236 Kristelh: Thank you, dear lady.

Nov 30, 2023, 5:28 pm


November 2006 - An Ancient Muse

Loreena McKennitt is magical and mystical. This is "The Gates of Istanbul" from an excellent album.

Nov 30, 2023, 5:37 pm


November 2007 - As I Am

Alicia Keys is definitely my favourite current soul & R&B performer. Apart from being visually stunning she produces some memorable moments on record.

"No One" always stirs me.

Nov 30, 2023, 5:40 pm

I saw Loreena McKennitt in concert years ago. Wonderful, and I own several cds of hers

Nov 30, 2023, 5:43 pm

>230 mahsdad: I am also planning on reading the Regeneration trilogy for WWI, Jeff. The Killer Angels is the first book ever that I remember thinking "I wish I had written that." I will probably read it for the Civil War month.

>233 PaulCranswick: I have never heard of any of those, Juan, so I will be interested in hearing what you think of them!

Nov 30, 2023, 5:49 pm


November 2008 - I am ... Sasha Fierce

From one icon to another. I remember seeing her in concert in Sheffield around this time and my brother - never short on self-esteem - turned to me and said "Wow we could have made lovely children!".
This is "Halo"

Nov 30, 2023, 5:52 pm

>240 jessibud2: I have most of her music on CD too, Shelley. Marvellous stuff but I have never had the chance to see her perform.

>241 alcottacre: I hope to do at least one work of fiction and one NF each month. The Ghost Road is definitely a possibility as is The Killer Angels.

I don't know how long I will take to get to this latest batch!

Nov 30, 2023, 9:51 pm

Here's the next readathon:

Nov 30, 2023, 10:18 pm

Thanks Silver.

Dez 1, 2023, 4:11 pm

I have made more progress in By the Sea and am about 40 pages from completing it. This it turning out to be a tangled set of threads that make up the main yarn. I am enjoying the way that Gurnah is taking his time in sorting out the yarn. I can't wait to hear what you make of this novel. I also hope that some of the many who follow your thread will put this book on their reading wish lists and perhaps some of them will purchase this book. It is a good thing that Gurneh won the Nobel. I have read two of his novels so far and they are both excellent examples of the writing art and do it with such elegant style and prose.

Dez 1, 2023, 4:23 pm

>243 PaulCranswick: I hope to read at least 2 each month as well. I would prefer nonfiction to fiction, but I will take what I can get!

Happy whatever, Paul!

Dez 1, 2023, 4:41 pm

>246 benitastrnad: Thanks for that Benita. I hopefully will finish it this weekend. He is an author that is to be savoured, I think, and isn't one to try and rush through because you'll miss his subtle art.

>247 alcottacre: Yes, I am also thinking more about non-fiction too but there is some great war literature too.

Dez 1, 2023, 10:20 pm

The January and February BAC selections are up!

Dez 2, 2023, 12:02 am

>249 amanda4242: Just been to a cousin's wedding. Off there now (BAC)!

Dez 2, 2023, 12:27 am

First December additions

485. The War in the West : Germany Ascendant 1939-1941 by James Holland
486. The War in the West : The Allies Fight Back 1941-1943 by James Holland
487. Road of Bones by Fergal Keane
488. Scenes from a Childhood by Jon Fosse

Look away Marianne these are not really for you!

Dez 2, 2023, 4:39 am

BOOK #149

Something Fresh by P.G. Wodehouse
Date of Publication : 1915
Origin of Author : UK
Pages : 275 pp
150 Books for 150 year Challenge : 7/150

Still fresh after 108 years.

Plays with class prejudice and coincidence very adeptly and with smirking results.

No reader would have thought that "the war to end all wars" was raging when this first saw the light of day.


Editado: Dez 2, 2023, 4:46 am

BOOK #150

Around the World in 80 Books by David Damrosch
Date of Publication : 2021
Origin of Author : USA
Pages : 443 pp

This was good but I think it could have been much better.

I really enjoyed the opening chapters where the sense of place was most clear and well defined but as chapter lay upon chapter some of the connective tissue seemed to get strained and some of the choice of books were quite odd.

As a geographically varied reader and listomaniac I was of course interested in the premise but the execution carried the torch a long way without setting the flame fully alight.

Dez 2, 2023, 4:49 am

So I managed to reach my 2x150 with a month exactly to spare.

I have an ambitious list of 25 books to try and get through this month and have four books ongoing presently:

Howard's End by C.S. Forester (BAC)
By the Sea by Abdulrazak Gurnah (Shared read with Benita/ ANC)
How Beautiful We Were by Imbolo Mbue (ANC)
The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Saenz (AAC)

Dez 2, 2023, 8:07 am

Congratulations on reaching the magic goal twice, my friend!

Dez 2, 2023, 8:13 am

Happy Weekend, Paul. I hope all is well on your end. You sure love your music, don't you? That is so impressive. I love music too but find it difficult to fit into my daily life. The only thing I really listen too, are audiobooks. They reign supreme.

Good luck with those last 25 books.

Dez 2, 2023, 8:26 am

Congratulations on 2x75, Paul

Dez 2, 2023, 8:44 am

>255 SirThomas: Thank you, Thomas

>256 msf59: I don't watch TV, Mark, or very rarely. Some Netflix occasionally and some sports. News sources I am extremely careful with to balance things out as in this polarized world there is little objectivity and integrity left.

Dez 2, 2023, 8:44 am

>257 Kristelh: Thank you, dear Kristel.

Dez 2, 2023, 11:23 am

>252 PaulCranswick: "No reader would have thought that "the war to end all wars" was raging when this first saw the light of day." -- There's a certain innocence to Wodehouse, isn't there?

Dez 2, 2023, 11:23 am

Well done Paul 2x150, WOW!

Dez 2, 2023, 11:48 am

>254 PaulCranswick: Yay for a fellow double-75er!

Dez 2, 2023, 12:07 pm

>248 PaulCranswick: Yeah, I know about the War Literature and will certainly read some of it too, I just prefer nonfiction if I can get it.

>251 PaulCranswick: I posted my new books for the week on the 'This Just In' thread yesterday, Juan, if you want to take a peek.

I will be curious to see how the James Holland books are.

>252 PaulCranswick: I am going to have to give Wodehouse another go at some point. I tried reading him several years ago, but did not really find him all that funny.

>253 PaulCranswick: I am using the list from the book and have not yet read the book at all, so for me it is just more for reference purposes. I imagine I will eventually read it though.

Congratulations on 75x2 twice, Paul!! (if I understood that correctly)

Happy whatever!

Editado: Dez 2, 2023, 12:25 pm

>181 PaulCranswick: This sounds like fun.

I keep looking at the list and thinking there must be something important missing.

Perhaps wars NOT as directly relevant to the cultural line of descent leading to the culture of modern speakers of English? What kind of wars did they have in e.g. China before the Europeans became relevant there? Africa?

Also, I currently have a book in my queue Empires of the Steppes: A History of the Nomadic Tribes who Shaped Civilization - lots of war likely to be in there. And in the same vein, what about medieval wars - including the Norman conquest, the crusades, and much more? (Yes, I know, there are only 12 months in the year. But .... I wanna read them all, and the less I already know about them the better ...)

>253 PaulCranswick: Congrats on 2 * 150 books.

I think I'll be close to 150 this year, but not quite make it - just about everything I'm currently reading is heavy in both senses, and I don't feel right about the idea of rereading a bunch of short novels just to make the count, though the idea does occur to me regularly, showing how tempted I am.

Dez 2, 2023, 3:22 pm

>260 foggidawn: Indeed there is, Foggi - but it is a knowing or even if I am being cynical a contrived innocence because he is also very cutting in an observational sense.

>261 mdoris: I don't think I will ever manage to put up Wow numbers until I retire, Mary, but thank you, dear lady.

Dez 2, 2023, 3:26 pm

>262 richardderus: A far greater achievement for you in this year, dear fellow.

>263 alcottacre: I think that as a reference, Damrosch it is more useful than it was rewarding as a general read, Juana.

I am at half your reading numbers, Stasia, as you made 4x75 already!

Dez 2, 2023, 3:33 pm

>264 ArlieS: You are right, Arlie, that the selections are (sadly in a humanitarian sense) the tip of the iceberg. April and July will provide scope for a much wider selection as a lot of wars have been either wars of religion or conquest.
It is also why my wildcard is pick your own fight so basically any war reading can qualify. Your Crusades fit the former whilst your Mongolian hordes fit the latter of the two more general choices.

It will be great to have you along for the challenge. xx

Dez 2, 2023, 3:43 pm

Congrats on reaching 150, Paul!

Dez 2, 2023, 3:44 pm

>268 bell7: Thank you, Mary. We have both done well this year, right?

Dez 2, 2023, 6:59 pm

>267 PaulCranswick: Aha. I misinterpreted "Wars of Religion" to specifically refer to a particular period of European history, featuring Protestants vs Catholics.

There's lots more scope if this is taken in a more generalized way, including the entire rise of the dar al-Islam (sp?)

Dez 2, 2023, 8:55 pm

>270 ArlieS: Indeed, Arlie. Plus the fact of course that the challenge invigilator is unbelievably relaxed when it comes to admissions!

Editado: Dez 2, 2023, 9:04 pm

>253 PaulCranswick: Congratulations!

Can we expect to see the December ANC thread soon now that you've reached such a milestone?

Dez 2, 2023, 9:11 pm

Hi Paul! I was thinking that I didn't like reading about war, but then realized some of my favorite books of the year could be included. Roy Jacobsen's Barroy series; Andrew Krivak's series about WWI.

Dez 2, 2023, 9:39 pm

>272 amanda4242: Give me an hour or so, boss! I woke up with a slight fever and a very sore throat this morning so no singing for me this morning.

>273 banjo123: In some ways, Rhonda, I agree with Marianne that some of the literature on war can be a bit gratuitous, but there is some wonderful fiction and non-fiction there that I still have to go at.

Dez 2, 2023, 9:51 pm

>274 PaulCranswick: Oh no! Hope you feel better soon!

Dez 2, 2023, 10:08 pm

>275 amanda4242: Feeling a bit sorry for myself as even Erni has fled the coop this morning as she wants to spend a bit of time with some of her pals.

Editado: Dez 3, 2023, 9:50 pm

December's African Novel Challenge thread is belatedly up!

West Africa is the culmination of our tour of the continent and its written gems.

Dez 2, 2023, 10:35 pm

Hope you feel better soon.

Dez 2, 2023, 10:51 pm

>278 Kristelh: Thank you, Kristel.

I was going to go and catch up with my music and maybe even start a new thread, but I'll go and read in a hot tub instead. xx

Dez 3, 2023, 12:03 am

November 2023 in Review

World Events
Unfortunately, November was a month which saw more bloodshed in the Middle East and pro-Palestinian rallies in much of the world (and sadly pro-Hamas anti-semitic ones too). I attended a wedding and some of the rampant racism and pretty scandalous misinformation being bought by a gullible muslim population was brought home to me - they seem to have forgotten what started this current campaign.
There was the world's first whole eye transplant in the USA whilst a one-eyed government lauded President Xi in San Francisco finding time to clean up the place in the meanwhile and bedeck its streets with Chinese flags.
Australia won the cricket world cup defeating a seemingly unbeatable India in the final.
In a Cabinet re-shuffle in the UK, David Cameron made a comeback but as Foreign Secretary - a puzzled nation sighed.
A "populist" government of the right won power in the Netherlands.

It was a month that saw the passing of Henry Kissinger (love him or hate him an Icon of American politics - I am closer to the second group), AS Byatt, Alistair Darling, John Nicholls, Rosalynn Carter and Shane MacGowan

September : 10 books (150 year to date)
Ave Book Length : 276.10 (245.53)
September pages : 2,761 (36,829)
Daily Average : 92.03 (110.27)

Longest Book : 443 pages Around the World in 80 Books (715 pages The Covenant of Water)
Shortest Book 103 pages Pearl (32 pages The Waste Land)

Author Origins
53 UK
28 USA
6 Ireland,
3 Various, Australia, France
2 Netherlands, India, Canada, Russia, Kenya
1 Guyana, Brazil, Venezuela, Chile, Sweden, Iceland, Albania, Spain, Bulgaria, Italy, Albania, Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya, Mozambique, Angola. Egypt, Sudan, Burundi, Nigeria, Ukraine, Japan, Vietnam, NZ, Mexico, Taiwan, Chad, Ivory Coast, DRC, Congo, Mali, Malaysia, Senegal, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Korea, Ethiopia, Austria, Pakistan, Rwanda, Poland, Botswana


MALE 7 (85)
FEMALE 3 (62)


5 (79) Fiction
2 (23) Poetry
2 (23) Non-Fiction
1 (18) Thriller
0 (5) Short Stories
0 (1) Sci-Fi/Fantasy
0 (1) Plays

Book of the Month :
I am surprised because I thought Bel Canto would be an easy winner but, although I liked it and I also really enjoyed Western Lane, I am going to choose Politics on the Edge by Rory Stewart as it engaged me more than anything else I read in a tough month.

Dez 3, 2023, 12:59 am

I finished reading By the Sea tonight and can't wait for you to finish so that we can compare notes. As you can tell, I liked this book! I will say that this is a beautifully written book. For once, in the last few years, I think that the Nobel Literature committee got it right and showed a bit of gumption in selecting this author as the winner in 2021. Gurnah has a classical smooth style that is beautiful to read. His subject matter is not easy reading and he sends some very pointed darts right into the heart of European Colonialism, but his writing and the way he crafts his stories to explore some really hard things about individual and governmental character is just outstanding.

I read Afterlives back in September for a real life book discussion group and thought it was another wonderful book. By the Sea is now the second book by Gurnah that I have really really liked, so I think this is an author that should be getting lots of reading time by the knowledgeable readers here in LT. I have checked and out library has more of his titles, so I will try check some of them out to take with me on my long sojourn in Kansas that will begin with the upcoming holidays.

In my entry for this title in LT, I had tacked in the note that this book was highly recommended by Darryl. If a book is recommended by Dr. Darryl it should be read by more people. He is a wise judge of books.

Dez 3, 2023, 1:45 am

>281 benitastrnad: I won't be far behind you, Benita. Almost certainly my first completed book in December.

We are going to be in agreement, I can tell you already!

And yes Darryl is a very good judge of books.

Dez 3, 2023, 5:52 am

Catching up. I like the idea of your War challenge for 2024 so count me in.

Dez 3, 2023, 6:08 am

>253 PaulCranswick: Congratulations on reaching 2 x 75, Paul!

Dez 3, 2023, 7:23 am

>283 avatiakh: Great, Kerry. I am so pleased that you'll be along.

>284 FAMeulstee: Thanks, Anita. One day maybe I'll manage to do your sort of numbers when I get rid of this pesky work stuff!

Dez 3, 2023, 7:25 am

Good Morning (here in Minnesota) and hope you’re feeling better.

Dez 3, 2023, 8:06 am

>286 Kristelh: I am struggling on, Kristel, thank you. Plenty of warm water and lemon and honey for me. Struggling to swallow a bit.

Dez 3, 2023, 9:15 am

Sorry to hear that, Paul.
The best wishes for you!

Dez 3, 2023, 10:01 am

Thanks Thomas. I am about to have an early night so hopefully I will feel a tad better in the morning.

Dez 3, 2023, 11:50 am

Best wishes Paul!

>181 PaulCranswick: Sounds interesting. I think I might pick a couple of months to participate in.

Dez 3, 2023, 12:02 pm

Hope you're feeling better soon, Paul!

Dez 3, 2023, 5:38 pm

>290 EllaTim: That is great, Ella, just dip in where you like.

>291 bell7: Thanks Mary. Up this morning but not really feeling better yet.

Dez 3, 2023, 10:22 pm

Congratulations on 2 x 75!

Dez 4, 2023, 12:34 am

Thank you, Nina. xx

Dez 8, 2023, 12:51 pm

>202 m.belljackson: There is a great deal of difference between raw news in the paper or on TV and the same events interpreted after the fact by a historian, or even better, a writer of fiction—-someone who can give meaning to the apparently meaningless and perhaps even enable us to make better choices going forward. Escapism has its place but its effects are transient, while intellectual and artistic experience can transform us permanently.

Dez 8, 2023, 1:07 pm

>181 PaulCranswick: This looks like a great choice, although unlike “Africa” I have read a lot of books in some of these categories. But others—-not! And as in the previous challenge I know I have a lot of books that will qualify and have been waiting unread, in some cases for decades, for just this nudge. I tend to anthropomorphise my books, so I am imagining those neglected vols rubbing their pages with anticipation and thinking “Thank you, Paul!”

Dez 8, 2023, 5:02 pm

>295 booksaplenty1949: Nicely said.

>296 booksaplenty1949: Ah! The volumes all speak to you too!

Editado: Dez 9, 2023, 9:26 am

>297 PaulCranswick: Yes. Thank you for reassuring me that it’s normal, perfectly normal, bwahaha.

Editado: Dez 9, 2023, 5:40 pm

Congratulations on your 150 reads Paul. Dn't know where you find the time. I might manage 80 this year.

Dez 9, 2023, 5:56 pm

>300 Caroline_McElwee: Lack of sleep contributes, Caroline! Plus few hobbies.

Dez 27, 2023, 3:23 pm

I’m up for the challenge of reading books about war, Paul. I have quite a few on the shelves as my relatives fought in many of them.

Dez 27, 2023, 8:05 pm

>302 Familyhistorian: It will be great to have your company, Meg. xx
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