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Archives 2017 > w/o February 3 to 9, 2017

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message 1: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3778 comments Mod
Greetings readers! It has been an exciting week with the Canada Reads announcement, the beginning of Black History Month and for those of us in Ontario, Wiarton Willie's prediction of an early spring (lol)!

What did you finish this week and what are you starting to read?


message 2: by HeatherLynn (new)

HeatherLynn | 22 comments I have started reading this month's group read Half Blood Blues. It didn't grab me right away, but after the first small sections, I am hooked.

I am also listening to the audiobook The Polished Hoe


message 3: by Linda (new)

Linda (mspianobug) I am new and don't know about the group reads as yet. I am deep into a Kelley Armstrong book, Exit Strategy. I got this as a free book but I am enjoying it.


message 4: by ✿✿✿May (last edited Feb 03, 2017 05:41AM) (new)

✿✿✿May  | 800 comments Happy Friday everyone!!
@HeatherLynn, @Linda, welcome to the weekly thread!

After the January non-fiction challenge, I need my fiction fix :) I read Only Daughter for my in-person book club and am currently reading The Scottish Banker of Surabaya, the Ava Lee series. I have a soft spot for this series because the main setting is Toronto/Richmond Hill. Ian Hamilton's latest book (book 9) just came out and I'm only reading book 5, trying to catch up.

Have a great weekend everyone!


message 5: by Rainey (last edited Feb 03, 2017 05:57AM) (new)

Rainey | 708 comments Well for Canada Reads, I read one long list book - which I loved - Sleeping Giants.

I have read 2 short list books - Fifteen Dogs (last year for my BDA book club), and Company Town - which I really enjoyed.

Nostalgia, the Right to be Cold and The Break are not available in Kindle format in the US so I have ordered The Break and The Right To Be Cold: One Woman's Story of Protecting Her Culture, the Arctic and the Whole Planet. I was not prepared to spend $30 on Nostalgia, and will wait for my library's copy.

This week I am reading: Home - book 2 in The Binti series, that came out Tuesday (I am reading way more sci-fi this year that I have ever in past years). This counts for my Bingo Square and will give me 2 Bingo lines once I finish it. This also counts for the Black History Challenge as well.

For Black History Month: Invisible Man, and Hidden Figures.

For BDA Book Club: Finish Outline which I am finding very tedious; and will start My Name Is Lucy Barton, which is our February read.


message 6: by ✿✿✿May (new)

✿✿✿May  | 800 comments @Rainey, so glad you are following Canada Reads from Bermuda!


message 7: by Allison (new)

Allison | 1954 comments Well, a bit of a failed reading week for me, at least in terms of finishing anything.

Still working on The Right To Be Cold: One Woman's Story of Protecting Her Culture, the Arctic and the Whole Planet. Not a quick read, as it doesn’t really “suck you in” with plot or story line, or even writing style. It is an important book and I’m glad it’s written, but it’s not unputdownable.

I started and then gave up on Me, Myself, and Why: Searching for the Science of Self. I did like it, and the writing was good, but at about half way, it started to be all the same-again-y, so I released it with good feelings, guilt-free. (I love books on genetics, but the more socially-slanted The Juggler's Children: A Journey into Family, Legend and the Genes that Bind Us spoke better to me.)

That freed me up to start Black History Month with The House Girl. Only after I started did I realize that the author was white — I was aiming to have all black authors this month for Black History Month reads — however, by then I was into the story, so will keep going. So far so good.


message 8: by Allison (new)

Allison | 1954 comments @Rainey, as I was updating my own BINGO plans, I saw how far along you are! Awesome! So impressive!


message 9: by Rainey (last edited Feb 04, 2017 11:14AM) (new)

Rainey | 708 comments thanks.

I need to update my list actually. When I finish Binti Home: (G3), I will have 2 lines of Bingo.

I will have a bingo for Line B3, I3, N3, G3, O3 and
I will have a bingo for Line G1, G2, G3, G4, G5


message 10: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1327 comments I read Wide Sargasso Sea this week. I didn't enjoy it that much but the discussion my book club had last night was fantastic. It is the kind of book you want to talk about.

On audio, I'm listening to Nobody's Fool. Can't go wrong with some Richard Russo.

I also have 3-4 short story collections going at once, as I am reading one short story per day and so far so good. I managed to read one every day throughout the month of January and hope to continue throughout the year. I'm keeping a log of every story read.


message 11: by Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (last edited Feb 03, 2017 06:58AM) (new)

Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1836 comments A little belated, but...

 photo 7c9d4bd0-f798-4935-8be2-e486ccbc12a0.jpg

There are no groundhogs in Newfoundland, but it's just as well since winter tends to drag its feet around here. That's a given!


message 12: by Susan (new)

Susan | 809 comments This week I finished High Dive on audio. I really enjoyed this one and the narration was great. I also finished Up Ghost River: A Chief's Journey Through the Turbulent Waters of Native History. This is an important book and the details of the abuse are horrifying, but I did not think it was well written and found it a bit of a slog because of that. For me, the writing made it a tedious read and I had to force myself to keep picking it up. :-(

I also read Wilson, a short graphic novel, because I saw there's a movie of this one coming out. This is by the same author who wrote Ghost World, which also became a movie.

Currently, I'm reading The Nix, which I'm really enjoying! I'd read some "meh" reviews and I think it lowered my expectations, so now I'm enjoying it more than expected. And for black history month, I've barely started White Rage: The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide and am rereading Between the World and Me on audio (narrated by the author and very well done).


message 13: by Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (last edited Feb 03, 2017 07:03AM) (new)

Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1836 comments This week I finished reading The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment and was left a little nonplussed. As I said in my review, perhaps I'm just too unenlightened to get it!

I am now reading (and loving) The Dinner. I'm thinking of recommending it to my book club too. So far, I'm seeing lots to talk about.

This week I finished the audiobook After the Crash, which I enjoyed. I'm now listening to The Underground Railroad for the Black History Month challenge.


message 14: by Diane (new)

Diane (Tvor) | 392 comments I've finished The Rehearsal by Eleanor Catton for my fifth Bingo square and am reading Nostalgia by M.G. Vassanji for the sixth one. I realized The Piano Makerby Kurt Palka, which I finished this week as well, would work for the "Immigrating to Canada" Bingo Square. In addition to Nostalgia, I've still got Swing Time by Zadie Smith ongoing, a good one for Black History Month, I've picked up and just barely started This Was a Man by Jeffrey Archer to finish that series, and getting nearer the end of Quicksilver. I realized that I was further along than I thought because fully 25% of the end of the book is filled with things like a list of characters, maps, acknowledgments etc.


Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1836 comments Just came across this and quite frankly, I have no idea what to make of it!

"From the creator of the #1 Canadian podcast, "CANADALAND," comes a browsable, hilarious exposé of Canada’s little-known dark side."
http://www.simonandschuster.ca/books/...


message 16: by Allison (new)

Allison | 1954 comments @ ༺ Allison ༻ I also loved The Dinner, and agree, I think it would give LOTS to think and talk about at a book club meeting! Wait til the ending! :)


message 17: by Allison (last edited Feb 03, 2017 08:01AM) (new)

Allison | 1954 comments ༺ Allison ༻ wrote: "Just came across this and quite frankly, I have no idea what to make of it!..."

Yowzah! Maybe it's a ploy to stop Americans from flooding our country now that their leadership has changed...


message 18: by Megan (new)

Megan  | 511 comments Happy Friday!!

I finished reading Wildflower Hill. I was hoping for a sweeping family saga but this book was really disappointing.

I put Moving Forward Sideways Like a Crab aside to start Up Ghost River: A Chief's Journey Through the Turbulent Waters of Native History. I'm only about 10 pages in and I'm sad already. I hope there is some hope at the end of this book! :)


message 19: by Magdelanye (new)

Magdelanye | 456 comments After a few days of glorious sun,waking up this morning to thickly falling snow! Not about to mess with the coast highway and buses today, so a cosy day for reading at home will offset my disappointment at missing my class and a measure of frustration around my computer situation. At least its a new month: last week I went over my data limit and so it was read only most of the time.
I did just now read this thread as it stands, and am impressed with everyone's diligence, especially Diane, still slogging away at Quicksilver! must say I am glad I didn't choose it for the challenge ;+) and anticipating your review.
and Rainey, with two lines of bingo already accomplished! I haven't even studied it, although I'm sure my reading will fall into many of the categories. I've certainly been intrigued by all the .
comments.
The two outstanding books I finished last week need no highlighting, and indeed I endorse all the praise song for both these books.: The Break by Katherena V and Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi. Awesome debuts for both women!
I also read and mostly enjoyed Ellen in Pieces by Caroline Adderson, a Canadian women whose book of short stories recently impressed me. @Louise, you might like to check out Pleased to Meet You.
Finished I'm Right and You are an Idiot by James Hoggan. Lots of interesting ideas and a good message, but my feeling is this book could have benefited from a bit more gestation time. I was left wanting way more.
I-minds by Mari k. Swingle promises to be more comprehensive. It will be my chapter a day non fiction. I also started Nothing to Do Nowhere to /Go by Thich Nhat Hanh which will baffle GR because I'm reading it as recommended, beginning on chapter 10. It helped that I was reading it this morning, having to deal with my disappointment at not being able go anywhere when I feel have much to do.
Complementing all this I've begun Mark Salzmans fiction, the delightful Laughing Sutra
Two comments got me thinking, about ET and the power of now. (see my rating) I had a great and rather enlightening time reading many of the reviews and commentary. ET is not an endearing sort of guy, and it seems to me his ego gets in the way of the material I much prefer Pema Chodrin and even Ruiz with his 4 agreements. However, when my mom died, the power of now came to me again and I have to say I found it helpful.
As for Up Ghost River, its a shame that the pedestrian writing took away from some readers interest. He's not Thomas King or Richard W, and there's some awkwardness there. For me, I went with Ed's story, let it resonate in me and yes devastate me.
since beginning this the snow has piled up another few inches. I will check back later if I can to see what the rest of you who haven't posted yet are up to. Its great to note a number of new keeners!
winter says boo to the groundhog!


message 20: by CynthiaA (new)

CynthiaA (bookthia) | 119 comments I am always so impressed with how many books many of you read. I usually take several weeks to finish a book.

This week I finished a historical fiction The Borgia Bride and I liked it but I didn't love it. We are travelling to Italy in a few weeks and I am interested in books set in the cities we will be visiting. This history part of this book was rock solid, and that is why I chose it in the first place. But the writing was nothing special and the "love story" in the plot was annoying. Am I the only person who doesn't believe in "love at first sight"? Seriously. How can a thinking person sacrifice everything for someone they have only met once, and didn't even have a conversation with. These kinds of things bug me.

In lighter fare, I read the 3rd in the Flavia de Luce series by Alan Bradley. A Red Herring Without Mustard I really enjoy these books. They aren't perfect, but they are entertaining and amusing. Perfect bedtime fare. My brain can relax, not get all riled up.

I am now reading a non-fiction about Michelangelo.

I am interested in some of the Canada Reads books, in particular Fifteen Dogs, and The Break. I love that Candy Palmater is one of the defenders, I am a huge fan of hers.

Like Susan, I have struggled with Vassanji in the past, but would be willing to read Nostalgia if it is defended well, and catches my attention.

@Louise I really struggled with Wild Sargasso Sea. I think if I had read it without knowing that Rochester was THE Rochester, I might have responded to it better. A good book club discussion probably would have helped me appreciate it more.


message 21: by Emmkay (new)

Emmkay | 313 comments @Louise and @CynthiaA, it has been years (decades?) since I read Wide Sargasso Sea, but I remember finding it fascinating. I grew up on Jane Eyre, and we also had the Rhys in the house, so I first read it in my teens. Certainly ripe for discussion, at any rate.

This week I completed some very quick reads, before moving on to something slower-paced:

- Irmina - a really good German graphic novel about a woman in the Second World War era, raises lots of interesting questions
- George - a middle-grade novel about a transgendered child, which I was somewhat disappointed by
- Tampa - a page-turner about a female junior high teacher who is in it because she's sexually attracted to young teen boys. Left me feeling rather gross though.

Then I read Between the World and Me. Although it's only 150 pages, it took me a while as it's not a book to race through. Loved the cadence of his language, and found lots to think about.

I'm just now beginning Here Comes the Sun, set in Jamaica.


message 22: by Mary (new)

Mary | 328 comments @ Susan I am glad you are liking The Nix. Although it seemed too long while I was reading it, I was disappointed and sad when it was over, be cause I had learned to love the flawed characters in the novel.
This week I read Farthing and found that although it read almost like a book of British manners of 1940's, it hid a very timely message about the dangers of fascism. Lindbergh is the fascist US president and Britain has sold its soul to the Nazis in order to end their part of the war, which continues without them. It is good look at scapegoating.
She of the Mountains is a lovely antidote to Farthing. It is a poetic book that juxtaposes Hindu mythology with a modern love affair with all its tenderness and confusion.
For February's theme I am reading Brown Girl in the Ring.


message 23: by Mary (new)

Mary | 328 comments @ CynthiaA -- I love Flavia de Luce, and who cares if it is not great literature, it is fun.
@ Magdelayne As usual you introduce me to writers, like Mark Salzman, and Mari Swingle, and have me move up the ladder such books as Homegoing, and Ellen in Pieces.
Sometimes it is nice to have a snow day. I am on Whitefish Mountain in Montana and the snow is so pretty coming down, yet I don't dare to drive down the hill to town so reading is about the best thing to do.
Welcome to all the newcomers!


message 24: by ❀ Susan (last edited Feb 03, 2017 04:24PM) (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3778 comments Mod
Wow - it looks like a busy day on this thread and a LOT of reading as usual!!

WTG @Rainey finishing 2 lines already!!

Like @Allison, I have not finished much this week other than Bear which I have commented in the CBC 100 Books thread and was probably one of the most unusual books I have read in a long time involving a woman... and a bear!

I am in the midst of:
Real Food/Fake Food: Why You Don’t Know What You’re Eating and What You Can Do about It but it had to go back on overdrive so now i wait. It is an interesting expose on food fraud but needed a LOT more editing. I am so far into it that I need to finish listening to it.
Small Great Things was my in person book club read which I am halfway through and enjoying. It is very unusual for me not to finish my book club books but it has been a bit too hectic around here.
Books for Living - thanks May!! I have been savouring this one, reading a chapter a day.
Weology: How Everybody Wins When We Comes Before Me - still working on this one - some great leadership tips but a little too heavy on the promotion of Tangerine bank (aka ING direct).
Half Blood Blues - was happy to find a 99 cent copy in a thrift store and started yet another book when i found myself in a waiting room without a book... lucky i had one in the car!

Looking at my own list, I clearly need to focus!


message 25: by Gillian (new)

Gillian | 236 comments Just started up at my old job again and I'm so tired already. I plan to sleep the weekend away.

This week I completed 5 books.

- Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey. A reread for me. It's one of my favourite political epic fantasy novels.
- This Strange Way of Dying: Stories of Magic, Desire and the Fantastic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia. A collection of short stories I really enjoyed.
- Wild Seed by Octavia E. Butler. This was my first book by her and I quite enjoyed it.
- The Rabbit Back Literature Society by Pasi Ilmari Jääskeläinen A magic realism mystery translated from Finnish that was an enjoyable book.
- And another paranormal romance by Nalini Singh. She's fast becoming one of my favourite authors in that genre.

I'm still reading way too many books as usual but the ones I have to finish soon are The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu, If On a Winter's Night a Traveller by Italo Calvino and Infomocracy by Malka Ann Older.


message 26: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1327 comments Emmkay wrote: "@Louise and @CynthiaA, it has been years (decades?) since I read Wide Sargasso Sea, but I remember finding it fascinating. I grew up on Jane Eyre, and we also had the R..."

Those who knew the Jane Eyre story well seemed to appreciate it more. I liked how she unromanticized Rochester. I mean who locks up a crazy wife in the attic?? And Rhys' treatment of the subject of madness shows how women were always very quick to be labelled *crazy* and locked away. And once you're locked away, of course you're going to go crazy.

While I'm not a fan of her writing style, I found the story interesting and it certainly does give a different spin on the Jane Eyre story.


message 27: by ✿✿✿May (new)

✿✿✿May  | 800 comments @Susan, there is no better feeling than sharing a favourite book with someone! Hope you like it!


message 28: by Mary (new)

Mary | 328 comments @ Louise Rochester locks up a "mad woman". Who was that woman? He married her in the Caribbean where he made his fortunes. Was it madness in the family that drove Rochester to think her mad? Or was the madness in the family the discovery that there was mixed blood in the family? Or did Rochester marry her only for her family's fortunes, and did this cause her to be mad.


message 29: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1327 comments Mary Anne wrote: "@ Louise Rochester locks up a "mad woman". Who was that woman? He married her in the Caribbean where he made his fortunes. Was it madness in the family that drove Rochester to think her mad? Or was..."

He didn't *make* his fortune. He married into it. Her mother may have been slightly unbalanced but locking her up with people who were raping her all the time, after her son died and everything else that happened to her, surely made her crazier. Same with Bertha, the way Rochester treated her (having sex with one of the help in the next room so she could hear it all) made her crazier than she might have been. With help and support these women might have led normal lives. Locked up and mistreated tipped them over the edge.


message 30: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1327 comments Didn't they already know there was mixed blood in the family. Isn't that what being Creole means?


message 31: by Mary (new)

Mary | 328 comments But did she not pass as white ? It has been many years since i read the book.


message 32: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1327 comments Mary Anne wrote: "But did she not pass as white ? It has been many years since i read the book."

Creole is a mix of black and white and you can have every shade from white to black, even in the same family.

According to Wikipedia:

In many parts of the Southern Caribbean, the term Creole people is used to refer to the mixed-race descendents of Europeans and African slaves born in the islands. Over time, there was intermarriage with residents from Asia as well. They eventually formed a common culture based on their experience of living together in islands colonized by the French, Spanish and English.


message 33: by Petra (new)

Petra | 739 comments HeatherLynn and Linda, welcome!

@ Rainey: that's a lot of books! Many of those are on my TBR list and I'm glad to hear that they are good ones.

@ Louise and Emmkay: I tried Wide Sargasso Sea once but couldn't finish. However, the book synopsis always sounds good and I wonder if I just wasn't in the right frame of mind & should give it another try. .... and maybe now that I've read Jane Eyre, it may have more appeal.

This week I finished Call It Sleep, which I didn't enjoy much, and As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust, which I enjoyed a lot as an audio book on my commute.
I also started & finished another audio, When Breath Becomes Air, which I found really touching. Paul's contemplations on Life, Death and important focusses were warm and well thought out.

I'm currently reading Early One Morning (yawner, so far) and listening to Wuthering Heights on audio.


Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1836 comments Oh! Wuthering Heights. One of my all time faves.


message 35: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1327 comments Petra wrote: "@ Louise and Emmkay: I tried Wide Sargasso Sea once but couldn't finish. However, the book synopsis always sounds good and I wonder if I just wasn't in the right frame of mind & should give it another try. .... and maybe now that I've read Jane Eyre, it may have more appeal...."

Her style is not easy to read. I felt in a fog much of the time. I enjoyed our book club discussion more than the actual book. It`s a good story if you can make your way through her writing.


message 36: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3778 comments Mod
@Petra - I think that When Breath Becomes Air should come with it's own box of tissue!!


message 37: by Petra (new)

Petra | 739 comments @ Allison: so far I'm really enjoying Wuthering Heights.

@ Louise: now that you say it, it was the writing style that I had trouble with.

@ Susan: Luckily, I didn't cry (I was driving). I found his story touching, for sure. He had such a contemplative focus on his journey.


message 38: by Margaret (new)

Margaret Mair | 8 comments This week I finished The Stupidest Angel: A Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror. Such an odd tale, and I thought I might not enjoy the wild mixture of elements - but I found myself reading through it quickly.

Dropped it off at the library today and picked up Open Heart, Open Mind, which goes straight into the TBR pile while I work on Half Blood Blues which I have as an ebook and The Nature of the Beast. I try to have an ebook for reading while I wait somewhere, and so far I'm engrossed enough in Half Blood Blues to wish I had more waiting to do.

And that's my week in reading...


message 39: by Wanda (new)

Wanda | 572 comments A slow reading week for me, finished The Girl Before- good psychological twists. I am reading Find Her, another psychological thriller- guess I am in that frame of mind and have started Half Blood Blues as it seems to be popular for the monthly challenge.


message 40: by Magdelanye (new)

Magdelanye | 456 comments power outage here, but I think I'm connected here.
Another love for JRs Sargasso Sea, such a moody, evocative piece of writing. wondering if I'd think so now, a few decades on
@shvaugn Kushiels Dart? a fave of yours? please tell me what did I not get, because I binned this one after a few chapters.


message 41: by Gillian (new)

Gillian | 236 comments @Magdelanye It does take a bit to get going in the first book but I loved the characters voices. Phedre was such a strong character that I really connected to. And then as the book moved along the world got more complex, the characters grew, politics got deeper. It was also one of the first alternate histories and political fantasy novels I read and I loved the lore. I do recognize that it's not for everyone though and I don't recommend it unless I know you're ok with kinky sex in your fantasy.


message 42: by Allison (last edited Feb 04, 2017 06:49AM) (new)

Allison | 1954 comments So yay -- After complaining about never winning a giveaway, I guess the GoodReads gods heard me and changed that.

Was notified today that I won a copy of The Strays! I'm actually looking forward to this -- it looks like a neat one!


message 43: by Susan (new)

Susan | 809 comments Ha, that's funny. Congrats, Allison!


message 44: by Mary (new)

Mary | 328 comments Shvaugn wrote: "Just started up at my old job again and I'm so tired already. I plan to sleep the weekend away.

Have you read other Scandinavian novels besides The Rabbit Back Literature Society? I like many of their mystery/detective novels. Think Stieg Larson. There is also Yrsa Sigurðardóttir, Anne Holt, and Helene Tursten.



message 45: by Gillian (last edited Feb 04, 2017 10:10AM) (new)

Gillian | 236 comments @ Mary Anne I read Steig Larson's novels in French years ago and enjoyed them. I'm not a huge mystery/triller fan. I was primarily interested in The Rabbit Back Literature society for the dark magic realism elements.


message 46: by Magdelanye (new)

Magdelanye | 456 comments @Allison congratulations on your book win! So I guess it might be strategic here to complain that I've never won a thing from them :-( At least lately more have been open for Canadians to enter. And how does one go about getting a book in exchange for an honest review?
@shvaugn thanks for your explanation. I am not so interested in reading about sex, kinky even less. The whole s/m scene I find sad, and I am not a big fan of suffering, so although I think I get it now, ( I'm referring to the popularity of this book) I don't feel compelled to go there. In my late 20 s I felt obliged to read the marquis de Sade. Quite enough!
@petra , as a new feminist,when my sisters were engrossed in Simone de Beauvoir and Gloria Steinem, I needed some fiction as well to unwind. Wuthering Heights instantly became my guilty pleasure. I'm so glad you love it too.


message 47: by Mj (last edited Feb 07, 2017 08:26AM) (new)

Mj This past week I finished Juliet's Answer: One Man's Search for Love and the Elusive Cure for Heartbreak by Glenn Dixon and The Best Kind of People by Zoe Whittall. Very different in writing styles and content but am glad I read them both. I received Juliet's Answer in exchange for a review (currently pending). The Calgary author was a member of another bookclub and some members here may remember him, Whittall's book was one that I selected for an in-person book club.

In the upcoming week I have most of my Canadian black his/herstory books in hand to get going on.

Lots of interesting books and comments being mentioned by others.

Allison - Congratulations on the give away. Hope you keep enjoying The House Girl. Thought it was an excellent debut.

Diane - am a big Jeffrey Archer fan myself but stopped after book 4. Thanks for the reminder to get back to the series.

Madelanye - thanks for recommending Homegoing so highly. Am the first hold at the library but have had it frozen for quite a while to try to get some Canadian bingo squares completed.

Rainey - Congrats on your Bingo Progress! While I enjoyed Outline and gave it 3 stars, I only rated it 3rd out of the 4 2015 Scotiabank Giller books I read that year. Found it a bit too detached and observational for more stars so understand your lack of engagement but know many others really liked it and can see that as well. Am a big fan of My Name Is Lucy Barton and was disappointed it didn't move up further in some of the awards it was long listed for. Hope it's more to your liking.

Susan and Emmkay - Thought a lot of Between the World and Me rang true and Ta-Nehisi Coates made some good points. I learned a few new things but overall felt it was a missed opportunity. Some parts read very fluidly with wonderful language but in many other parts the book read more like a rant. I was disappointed that there were no recommendations (the biggest missed opportunity imo.) I was considering rereading it later. Maybe I should try it in audio and will appreciate its cadence more.

Up Ghost River: A Chief's Journey Through the Turbulent Waters of Native History

Am surprised about the negative comments about Edmund Metatawabin's writing. I'm fine with different opinions and different reading preferences but thought I'd introduce another perspectives here since the comments were brought up in this Friday Spine Crackers.

As a non-author and untrained writer I felt his writing was fine for the mass audience he was trying to reach. It is a memoir and not a literary book. I thought it suited his purpose well - to get the information out to a wider audience and to call to action readers who empathized with his own story and the mistreatment of thousands of Canadian's aboriginal children. I thought the fact that he wrote the story himself, even though he wasn't an experienced author, made the book more powerful and authentic. He engaged me in his story almost immediately. I felt the writing flowed quite well and made reading easy. Also thought that the ending with websites and suggestions was an excellent conclusion and way to keep the story alive and hopefully moving people forward into positive action.

Am wondering if the difficult content that caused many to read the book in short spurts rather than in one or two sittings (a much different reading style than how people usually read) could have contributed to the negative critiques about poor writing. (will post in the Monthly Group Reads as well where perhaps better suited.)

❀ Susan - Can totally empathize with difficulty completing book club books on time recently. It's starting to happen for me as well and is also unusual. :( Glad you're enjoying Small Great Things. Much as I enjoy literary fiction and Canadian fiction, I'm banking that mainstream American author Jodi Picoult will be successful in reaching a very wide audience with this book's important issue of systemic racism and white privilege.

Mary Anne - WRT Scandanavian authors/books. I read Stieg Larson's trilogy but not the 4th published after his death and enjoyed them.
So far have read 7 of the Kurt Wallander Series by Swedish author Henning Mankell and really enjoy the series. Mankell is strong in character development and creating intricate plot, mood and suspense.
I also read the first book In the Darkness in the Inspector Konrad Sejer Series by Karin Fossum the queen of Norwegian crime. Enjoyed it in 2014 and planned to read more but haven't done so - has another strong lead character. Enjoy lead characters with integrity and flaws. Here's a good link about the series: http://www.crimefictionlover.com/2013...
Also read a Headhunters, a stand-alone by Jo Nesbø. It was ok but his Harry Hole series has a large following and much higher average rating, so haven't ruled him out.
Started an Anne Holt and was liking it but my time ran out as my partner read it first and liked it. Holt's Hanne Wilhelmsen series looks interesting. I did enjoy this older article by Holt on her Top Ten Favourite Female Detectives: http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2010/...

Happy Reading Everyone!


message 48: by Diane (new)

Diane (Tvor) | 392 comments @MJ, the Archer "Clifton Chronicles" series does get a bit same-y after awhile and I disliked ending the books with a huge cliff hanger that there was always an almost incredible way around in the next book, though some of it is still good. It's a light read and I had to finish the series.


message 49: by Mj (new)

Mj @ Diane - am not a fan of the hook at the end to ensure you read the next book either. It's a way too obvious marketing ploy and but others seem to love it and can't wait for the next book. I don't doubt that there's still another book to come....despite it being the "supposed" last book - another hook. lol.

I do plan on finishing the series. I've been reading Jeffrey Archer since I was young. Started with Kane and Abel and have read most of his books since except his non-fiction prison diaries. I think his earlier books were more complex but agree his books today are light and easy to read quickly. I do think he's a good story teller and plot developer and seems to have a book formula that works for him and his many fans.


message 50: by Talie (new)

Talie | 81 comments wow everyone is reading so many great books!

It's been so long since I've shared what I'm reading:
Come, Thou Tortoise was quirky and lovely
The Double Hook short and poetic was incredibly dense. I really enjoyed the random references to coyote. Do help I would like to use this book in the Bingo but can't think of a good spot for it.
100 Cupboards is a children's book that is a part of a trilogy whose set up is fun. And for the author's sake I read Memories of My Melancholy Whores - old fashioned but a touching story of love in old age.
I've just started Sophie's World. Other than her ideal reaction to each of the new philosophies it's a nice premise for a book that has a very readable background on philosophy. Since I've only started I don't know how far the lessons will go.


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