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Archives 2018 > w/o May 25 to 31, 2018

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message 1: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3567 comments Mod
Greetings readers!!

This week wraps up our TBR challenge. It seems that many of us are tackling that TBR mountain and reading some books that have been on that shelf for a while. Some of us are struggling to get to that pile with the library holds coming due, new books coming out and other commitments. Regardless, I think this challenge might be helping our mountains grow!!

What have you been reading this past week and what is up next?


message 2: by Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (last edited May 25, 2018 04:42AM) (new)

Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1643 comments Good morning everyone! I'm excited to go see the movie Book Club tonight...with my book club no less.

This week I read a book that came recommended by Nicholas Sparks, To Dance with the White Dog. He touts it as one of his favourite novels so I thought I'd give it a try. It was okay, but nothing spectacular. I just started reading The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. I think I'll pluck away at some of the titles for The Great American Read that I haven't yet read.

I rushed through the audiobook My Brilliant Friend because I had a bunch of library holds for audiobooks come up. One of which is The Great Alone, my current listen. Next up is the Pulitzer Prize winning Less.


message 3: by Story (new)

Story (storyheart) Wait...weren't we just here 5 minutes ago, wishing each other a happy long weekend? Time really flew this week and not much reading got done around here.

I'm reading The Doll's Alphabet. I am in love with it and want to have its story babies. The author is a young woman from Toronto and I hope she writes many, many, many more books like this.

Also listening to Pond which is dream-like and quite wonderful so far.

As for Mount TBR...I've only succeeded in helping it grow. I added more than 10 books to it this week alone!


message 4: by Rainey (last edited May 25, 2018 05:57AM) (new)

Rainey | 644 comments Well Its a holiday in Bermuda today. Bermuda Day. I plan to just veg and read and listen to audiobooks.

We had author Darnell L. Moore from thr US at our National library (the Adult Library) in for a reading of his new book No Ashes in the Fire: Coming of Age Black and Free in America It drops Tuesday. He was fantastic. I did a brief blurb about the event on my Instagram page if anyone is wants to read it. @rainebda4 is my handle.

I finished Circe and it was amazing. All other books had been pushed to the side as I really was into this one. Review to come later.

Still reading Today Will Be Different I need to finish it this weekend as bookclub meets on Tuesday. Its not as good as Where'd You Go, Bernadette which I really loved.

Also reading Barracoon: The Story of the Last "Black Cargo" which I picked up in NY and am almost finished listening to Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body so so good. Her voice is perfect for her book.

Coming up is Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World – and Why Things Are Better Than You Think which my boss gave to everyone in the office to read. Its also a book Bill Gates thinks everyone should read.

Also plan to read Cocktales All proceeds go to RWA. Romance Writers Association to help with litigation against the author who has trademarked the word c*cky. I mentioned it in last Fridays post.


message 5: by Susan (new)

Susan | 743 comments So glad it's Friday!

This week I finished The Likeness, which I enjoyed. I also read Bad News, book 2 in the Patrick Melrose series. This series continues to surprise me - this novel basically involved the main character taking drugs for two days, yet it was also funny and hard to put down. I'm usually bored silly by drug-taking in novels.

I'm still reading Men We Reaped, which is such a sad memoir but is giving me insight into why Jesmyn Ward writes about the things she does. I'm also about halfway through The Perfect Nanny, which is a great read and hard to put down.

I've also been inspired by The Great American Read this week and have pulled two books on the list off my shelves: Looking for Alaska and Things Fall Apart. One of these will probably be up next.


message 6: by Shannon (new)

Shannon White | 198 comments This week I finished Love and Other Consolation Prizes for my book club. Our club really enjoyed the author's prior work - Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet. I found Love and Other... to be entertaining however a little too cheesy. I don't recall the same level of predictability and cheese in Hotel on the Corner... that said, I am not sad that I read this book however I think it may be my last Jamie Ford book.

This morning, I just started The Last Neanderthal. I have literally only read the opening prologue but I was really really impressed with that opener and the quality of the writing. I am looking forward to reading the book...particularly because the subject is so unique. :)

I have a copy of Circe... so many of you seemed to enjoy it so perhaps I will attempt to read that soon also.

happy Reading all


message 7: by ✿✿✿May (last edited May 25, 2018 06:33AM) (new)

✿✿✿May  | 671 comments Wow, the month of May is almost over!
As I mentioned in the May TBR challenge thread, I am doing very poorly with the challenge, but reading in general this month has been slow. I abandoned Seven Types of Ambiguity after giving it a good try, but now it seems my colleague is really enjoying it for her commute to and from work.
This week I finished The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller. @Rainey, I have Circe too by the same author and am happy to hear you enjoyed it!
Currently reading The Dry, my in-person book club read, not bad and a perfect patio read. I also just have One Half from the East from the library.

I too watched The Great American Read and joined their FB group (a very ACTIVE group!). Each week they will have 2 books up for discussion. This week it is Catch-22 and The Count of Monte Cristo. Not sure if I'll get to them though.
Have a fantastic weekend! I am looking forward to spending some time on my patio this weekend.


Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1643 comments Everyone keeps talking about these Madeline Miller books. I'm intrigued but I've promised myself that I won't buy any books for a while...sigh.

WRT to The Great American Read, I was hoping there would be a Goodreads group. Facebook just isn't the right platform for book discussion.


message 9: by Heather(Gibby) (new)

Heather(Gibby) (heather-gibby) | 428 comments This week I finished in audio The Voyage Out by Virginia Woolf and I can officially say I am not a fan of her writing, probably won't try any more, there are too many great books out there to labour through something you don't enjoy.

I also read Blindness which I thought was a fantastically well write book, it has won the Nobel Prize. It is rare that you get dystopian fiction written this well.

Both these books were for the end of a three month readign challenge form another Goodreads group, so I am hoping to turn my attention more to my 2018 Canlit Bingo.


message 10: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1171 comments Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ wrote: "Next up is the Pulitzer Prize winning Less. .."

I want to read this one too.


message 11: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1171 comments Storyheart wrote: "Also listening to Pond which is dream-like and quite wonderful so far.."

Our book club read it (or rather, attempted to read it) last year. We all hated it. I couldn't finish it. Her writing is lovely but she had absolutely NOTHING to say in that book. I would imagine it does put the readers in a dream-like stance.


message 12: by Louise (last edited May 25, 2018 10:47AM) (new)

Louise | 1171 comments This week I finished the awful, AWFUL audiobook The Book That Matters Most. OMG, what drivel. Now I'm listening to They Called Me Number One: Secrets and Survival at an Indian Residential School and sadly admit that I am burnt out on residential school stories. These stories need to be told and need to be read but I feel as though I've read them all now, and it has become an exercise in repetition.

One book I am truly enjoying reading is Ending Up, by an author I've never read before but definitely want to read more of, Kingsley Amis. This one is a hilarious portrayal of 5 senior citizens, and not particularly nice senior citizens, who live (and bicker) together. It's a great romp.

I am absolutely loving my NYRB book club subscription. I'm getting to read some fabulous books I would not read on my own. The last one I read was actually Canadian, someone I had never heard of! It too was quite interesting. Basic Black with Pearls by Helen Weinzweig.

Happy reading everyone!


message 13: by Shannon (new)

Shannon White | 198 comments @heather - I also enjoyed Blindness quite a bit. It wasn't necessarily an easy read but it was such an interesting story. Very imaginative.


message 14: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1171 comments Heather(Gibby) wrote: "I also read Blindness which I thought was a fantastically well write book, it has won the Nobel Prize.."

I'm not sure it's the book Blindness that won the Nobel but rather Saramago. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1998 for his whole body of work.


message 15: by Story (new)

Story (storyheart) Louise wrote: Her writing is lovely but she had absolutely NOTHING to say in that book."

Have to respectfully disagree with you there. She has a lot to say about the phenomenology of solitude.


message 16: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1171 comments @Storyheart. You may be right. I didn’t read enough of it to get her message. I tried to read it, I tried really hard, but I found it too painful to read.


message 17: by Colleen (new)

Colleen | 73 comments Being back to work full time is really cutting into my reading. I'm a slow reader to begin with, and now with less free time, I'm getting behind with my reading goals. This weekend won't afford much time for reading either. I've got my son's sixth birthday to celebrate. It's the first time I'm throwing him a party with friends. Hopefully it all goes well!

I am savouring Heather O'Neill's The Lonely Hearts Hotel. I love everything about her writing, and her characters. This book is quite dreamy and yet gritty - the perfect combination for me!


message 18: by Mj (last edited Jun 02, 2018 12:59PM) (new)

Mj Didn’t post last week and since then I have finished 2 of the books I mentioned.

Taking Charge of Cancer: What You Need to Know to Get the Best Treatment is a good reference book for anyone knowing people dealing with cancer. And who doesn’t have a friend, family member or acquaintance who’s been impacted? It’s written by a Canadian radiologist oncologist. His writing is straight-forward and provides lots of directions, questions to ask and websites to check out. The focus is on the major cancers - lung, breast, bowel and prostrate but would be useful in understanding the diagnosis, tests, options etc. for any type of cancer.

Also finished The Jaguar's Children by Canadiaan author John Vaillant. It started slowly and took a while to engage me but I persevered as it was a book club choice. Once the story picked up, it was hard to put down and I learned lots about Mexican folklore and Oaxaca culture. Turns out it was inspired by a true story so would be a good choice for a Bingo Square.

Finished and enjoyed Light Lifting by Alexander MacLeod for both the 2018 Cross Canada Challenge and the 2018 Bingo Challenge. MacLeod has such insight into the human psyche and relationships. He writes so well about regular everyday happenings and corresponding emotions but is able to do so so in a short story format that reads like a complete complex standalone novel.

Also finished Awakening in the Northwest Territories: One Man's Search for Fulfilment by Alastair Henry for the 2018 Cross Country Challenge and learned a lot about the Dene aboriginals who live in the north (originally nomadic) and their culture both past and present. I also was reminded about living in the moment, being conscious and also what constitutes a full life from one person's newly enlightened perspective i.e. money and possessions can't buy happiness.

Also finished Farm to Chef: Cooking Through the Seasons by Lynn Crawford. Loved the book even though I’m not usually a fan of cookbooks organized by season. What I liked however was how this book was organized by vegetable - which makes perfect sense, since more than anything the freshest vegetables are seasonally dependent and available. I often start with fresh vegetables when deciding a menu. Have a few recipes picked out to try for the 2018 Bingo.

Fyi, you should know I’m a bit of a cook book junkie. I own more than 300 cookbooks - many from widely varying cultures. I always read cookbooks from cover to cover as I love learn more and to soak up the culture that is well-evidenced in the photos, background material and the recipes themselves. Am more likely to look to foreign recipe cookbooks to read and purchase - so this Canadian cookbook was a treat. Am not surprised as I havej been a huge fan of Lynn Crosbies televisions shows on the Canadian Food Network and watched whatever show she is in (and there are many.) A true Canadian chef icon.

@ Susan - didn’t answer your question posted last week about "how are how are the Cross Canada and BINGO challenges coming along?"

I am not doing that well in the TBR challenge although I did complete Keeper'n Me and enjoyed and savoured it slowly. In general the pace of my reading volume has been much less than usual but I am a concerted effort and making pretty good progress on both the 2018 Bingo and Cross Canada Challenges and keeping focused on early completion.

Am currently reading Micmac by Choice: Elsie Sark--An Island Legend about an English woman who marries a Canadian Micmac and leaves England as his wife at a young age to live on a reserve in PEI. So far it’s interesting and I am learning lots about this early time period and the culture of the island residents. The author is a member of the Sisters of Charity who was born in PEI and retired from a professor’s teaching position at Mount Vincent University in Halifax before writing this book.

Have a few unfinished books that I “might’ get to before the end of May. For whatever reason……I seem to prefer to start “new” books. “Finishing” books isn’t as motivational for me right now and makes me feel a bit like I’m moving backwards.

Looking forward to hearing about and reading more great books!!


message 19: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3567 comments Mod
Hi everyone! I did not quite get to responding yesterday as I went to see the movie Book Club... with some members of my Book Club and my mom. It was really funny and a nice way to end a busy week... laughing!

@Rainey - great to hear that your boss gives a book to everyone to read. I will be interested to hear your thoughts. I led a leadership bookclub at my office a few years ago and it was great discussion!

@Shannon - that is too bad. The Hotel on the Corner of Bittersweet was a terrific book! I really enjoyed the Last Neanderthal and Claire Cameron was an interesting author to meet. All of her 3 books are so different from each other.

@May - sounds like an interesting FB group... one that will also add more books to the TBR pile!

I finished Warlight which I enjoyed although it was a bit challenging to focus on at times. It gave a different perspective on some of the intrigue going on after the war. On audio, I finished Emily of New Moon which is my first book from my TBR this month. It had some similarity to Anne of Green Gables with an orphan as the main character and the stories of her getting into calamities but it was unique and an enjoyable story.

I am in the midst of One Story, One Song which is a great collection of insights from the late Richard Wagamese. We are all picking an indigenous read for book club so I am looking forward to discussing. Listening to our other member's picks will likely add to my TBR pile! I am also reading Marilla of Green Gables which is an advance reader's copy from Harper Collins and is telling of Marilla's childhood. On audio, I am listening to Emily Climbs so am getting my fill of Lucy Maude Montgomery stories.


message 20: by Heather(Gibby) (new)

Heather(Gibby) (heather-gibby) | 428 comments @Colleen, I am a huge fan of Heather O'Neill as well , I haven't read The Girl Who Was Saturday Night yet, I hope to get to it this summer.


Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1643 comments @Susan, I saw Book Club last night too. It was funny but the plot wasn’t exactly thick with the book aspect. The books seemed just a side note. And the women were pretending to be much younger than they really are. Diane Keaton and Jane Fonda in particular. It irked me a little bit.


message 22: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3567 comments Mod
I can see that - I was glad it was not too focused on those books. Lol. It was a light, funny movie which was all I needed at the end of a busy week. Those women really do not look their age but I liked how they had stayed together as a book club for so many years. :)


message 23: by ✿✿✿May (new)

✿✿✿May  | 671 comments @Susan & Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺, I didn't get a chance to watch The Book Club with my chapter of in-person book club on Tuesday. I am happy to hear you liked it!


message 24: by Mj (new)

Mj @ ❀Susan & @ Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺, - sounds like the movie The Book Club was a light, fun and funny movie. Glad you both enjoyed it.

@ Storyheart & @ Louise - I remember putting Pond on my to read list. Haven't read it yet. Sounds like opinions are mixed. Saw a good review of the collection and remember it being on the long list for "the non-booker award" announced at the end of 2015.

@ Shelagh - I remember you asking for recommendations on books about solitude. Wondering if you've had a chance to read this book.

@ Colleen - I'm half done The Lonely Hearts Hotel and really enjoyed what I read. Put it down quite some time ago and haven't picked it up again "yet". It is one of the books I "might" get done for May's TBR challenge. Fingers crossed.

@ Heather (Gigbby) - I read and enjoyed The Girl Who Was Saturday Night but haven't gotten around to her Canada Reads' winner yet Lullabies for Little Criminals. There really are too many books to read in one's lifetime...but a wonderful challenge to have. :-)


Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1643 comments This group is so quiet lately. I almost feel like making a controversial statement just to spark discussion!


message 26: by Rainey (new)

Rainey | 644 comments lol


message 27: by Rainey (new)

Rainey | 644 comments Mj wrote: "@ ❀Susan & @ Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺, - sounds like the movie The Book Club was a light, fun and funny movie. Glad you both enjoyed it.

@ Storyheart & @ Louise - I remember putting [book:Pon..."


I loved Lullabies for Little Criminals.


message 28: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3567 comments Mod
LOL - it has been quiet... spring seems to be a busy time of year!!


message 29: by Ann-Marie (new)

Ann-Marie | 158 comments Hello readers!
I haven't logged in for awhile and didn't update last Friday. I have done hardly any reading lately! You are right about spring -- so much to do outside, kids activities into the evening, regular work etc... I didn't even pick up a book the last 2 weekends (!!). Seems my bedtime reading time is super short versus usual #tootired

I did just finish up Sing, Unburied, Sing which was okay... good enough but didn't wow my socks off like I seem to always expect from popular reads.

Hope you are doing well. And yes - let's spark something controversial. In Ontario -- that's election talk! But - let's skip that messy chat. Actually..... I wonder if any of the premiers-to-be are readers?


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