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Archives 2018 > W/o June 15 to 21, 2018

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message 1: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3567 comments Mod
Good morning readers! It is hard to believe that we are halfway through June. Soon summer vacation will be here!

Who is reading the group read this month? Anyone reading any books by indigenous writers this month?

What are you reading and what is next?

message 2: by Shannon (new)

Shannon White | 198 comments I am anxiously awaiting my July box from RavenReads - which always includes a book by an indigenous author. Can't wait for its arrival!

Last week I read Tin Man which was just ok for me. Well written, short, but a little too artsy for me I think. Just didn't grab me.

Now I am reading A Piece of the World. It appears on many book club lists, however this one also isn't captivating me. I am enjoying it but not in a "can't put it down' kinda way. For some reason I think this book will really come together by the end. I should be finished tomorrow so we'll see soon. :)

After that, I may read As Nature Made Him: The Boy Who Was Raised as a Girl... a timely topic and the book sounds interesting.

Hope you all are enjoying the weather, your book, and your lives. :) TGIF!!!

Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1643 comments Good morning! This week I'm reading Invisible Monsters by Chuck Palahniuk, which will be discussed at my book club meeting tomorrow night. The heat is on to finish, but I don't even know how far I am into it thanks to reading the remix version, which has you hopping all around the book. It's kind of cool, like the choose your own adventure books of my youth.

I listened to The Sellout this week, which had me chuckling here and there, but the story didn't really grab me. I just started listening to Jessica Knoll's latest, The Favorite Sister, for a change of pace.

message 4: by Megan (new)

Megan | 461 comments Good Morning!

@Shannon, I didn't know about As Nature Made Him. I think I'll have to check it out.

This week I finished reading The Lesser Blessed and I'm almost done Lakeland: Journeys into the Soul of Canada, which I've really enjoyed reading. It makes me want to go on more lake vacations in Canada.
I'm about to start Witness, I Am, which I can only assume will be a heartbreaking but beautiful read.

message 5: by Shannon (new)

Shannon White | 198 comments @Megan - let me know when you do...maybe we can read at/around the same time. I have another friend interested also but she doesn't participate in these discussions. :)

message 6: by Susan (new)

Susan | 743 comments Happy Friday!

This week I read Less, which recently won the Pulitzer. I enjoyed it very much. It's billed as a comic novel, and it is, but there's also a lot of melancholy in it too.

I'm still reading All the Pieces Matter: The Inside Story of The Wire, which is a fantastic oral history. You have to have seen and loved the series to appreciate this book, of course, but it is filled with great behind-the-scenes details and stories. I highly recommend it if you love The Wire.

Last night, I started Some Hope to continue with the Patrick Melrose novels.

message 7: by ✿✿✿May (new)

✿✿✿May  | 671 comments Happy Friday!! Another nice weekend coming up, so excited!!

This week I only finished The Gourmands' Way: Six Americans in Paris and the Birth of a New Gastronomy in audio. Timely with the tragic passing of Anthony Bourdain.
Still reading Americanah and enjoying it for the most part, but parts of it feel like "The dummy's guide to Black cultures", lol!

@Susan, I didn't plan any indigenous reads as they depress me, but maybe I will see what I have on the shelf.

Sort of working through the PBS Great American Read list as I have SO many on my shelf. Thinking of maybe The Stand or Flowers in the Attic, something creepy.....

Have a great weekend and Happy Father's Day!!

Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1643 comments Such a quiet thread here today. Where is everyone?

message 9: by Story (new)

Story (storyheart) Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ wrote: "Such a quiet thread here today. Where is everyone?"

Outside playing?

I'm still slowly working my way through Circe. Enjoying it a lot but life has been too busy for much reading.

Also about halfway through our monthly read, Indigenous Writes: A Guide to First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Issues in Canada and am finding it so readable and so informative. Great choice!

For some light giggles, I also enjoyed a book of literary cartoons by Tom Gauld: Baking With Kafka. He's so creative and funny.

Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 1643 comments Lol @Storyheart. Maybe they’re outside reading!

message 11: by Mj (last edited Jun 15, 2018 04:28PM) (new)

Mj Per your question @ ❀ Susan about who’s in for June’s Monthly Read. I’m in. As mentioned in my last week’s Friday Spine Crackers post I had 2 book club books to finish first and expected to have read enough and be in a position to post on June 20th.

Started last night on Indigenous Writes: A Guide to First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Issues in Canada and am about 50 pages in. Agree with @ Storyheart - it’s easy to read, packed full of information, extremely well-researched and has an incredible referenced section at the end of each chapter. Though the author is an academic, she doesn’t write like one. Her writing is pretty straight forward and I like the way she uses humour.

I also finished Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf and loved it, as did everyone in our book club. Great writing and characters. I have only read Benediction by this author but would like to read some more of what I didn’t realize was the last book of a trilogy (although except for the setting, am not sure how connected the books are.)

Also finished Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue for another book club. It was just a fluke that dates were changed to accommodate people and both clubs ended up meeting on the same day. This too wonderful book - 7 loved, 1 liked it and 1 thought is was ok. Lots of discussion, particularly since 1 of our members just took her test and interview for her Canadian citizenship the day before and was granted citizenship. She was absolutely thrilled and all of our members were so happy for her. For a debut novel Mbue's writing was terrific. She was born in Cameroon but immigrated to the U.S. at a young age and has written a story is about immigrants from Cameroon who move to the Big Apple to pursue the American dream. It was an Oprah Winfrey Book Club Selection and many described the book as a page turner. Again, great characters and plot. I thought it started and finished strong but dragged a bit in the middle, although I learned a lot about many topics in the book. 3 1/2 stars.

Right now besides reading Indigenous Writes, I’m half way through Margaret Atwood’s poetry collection called Morning in the Burned House. What a smart and feisty woman and author with a collection so varied in inspiration and with such wonderful word choices. Her poems are as political as any poetry I have ever read with very strong feminist undertones. I expect to finish soon. It’s quite addictive and plane to use for a 2018 Bingo Square.

@ May - I agree that Aboriginal writing can be depressing. A book that might be worth reading that I found uplifting, suitable for both adults and ages 13+ was written by Deborah Ellis- @ ❀ Susan mentioned her in another thread recently about being a great social justice advocate for children. In this book Looks Like Daylight she interviews about 60 Aboriginal teens in North America. There’s a 3-4 page blurb on each - their roots, their reserve or off-reserve, their dreams, what they’re doing to reclaim their heritage etcetera. Yes, some of the stories are sad but the majority are very positive and uplifting. A bright picture for the future seems possible with the talents and goals of these young aboriginals. Well worth reading and discussing by individuals, families and groups. Here's my full review if you or others think you might be interested:

message 12: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3567 comments Mod
Hi everyone! I have to admit to a very poor week of reading. We went to a concert in Toronto Monday night and I have been trying to catch up on sleep ever since! It was like a walk back in time as we first saw Depeche Mode together 25 years ago but i have a lot less energy now!

I did finish Still Water last weekend and finished listening to the last book of the Emily of New Moon series, Emily's Quest this week.

I have started a few books but not not connecting with any of them so hoping to get back at my reading this weekend. I have read the first two essays in Indigenous Writes: A Guide to First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Issues in Canada and am enjoying the learning.

@May - LOL - i think i might have last read the Flowers in the Attic Series in grade 8 or 9... they were so creepy!

@Storyheart - i have Circe on my bedside table... i had to make up the balance of a chapters order!

@MJ - I LOVED Our Souls at Night. I read the Benediction trilogy last summer and while I enjoyed them, they were not near as good as Our Souls. I have started the Deborah Ellis book The Breadwinner and enjoyed hearing her speak about telling the stories of children!

message 13: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3567 comments Mod
Just a reminder - voting for the July read ends tomorrow night!

message 14: by Wanda (new)

Wanda | 599 comments I have been enjoying reading through everyone's reading lists, always such a wide variety of genres and opinions, love it!

I am reading through Indigenous Writes: A Guide to First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Issues in Canada- I continue to gain new learning and like the author's style of writing.

I am almost finished Tin Man, is interesting, but as Shannon remarked, a bit artsy.

I have also been entranced by I'll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman's Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer- it is haunting.

And on audio, I am likely the only person who has not watched the Netflix version of Orange Is the New Black- so far, so good. I will check out the series once I finish the book.

Wishing all the Dad's in the group a Happy Father's Day!

message 15: by ✿✿✿May (new)

✿✿✿May  | 671 comments @Mj, thanks for the recommendation!

And I am wondering about the same thing, where is everyone, Lol?

message 16: by Louise (new)

Louise | 1171 comments Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ wrote: "Such a quiet thread here today. Where is everyone?"

Playing with puppies. I've been off work since May 30th so I have been getting some reading done (but not much in audio).

I read The Friend which was okay, and now I'm almost done with Sofia Khan Is Not Obliged which is basically Muslim chick lit but not bad as far as chick lit goes.

In audio I'm listening to Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are?.

and.....drum I finished Volume 3 of Marcel Proust's a la Recherche Du Temps Perdu. 4 more volumes to go.

message 17: by Emmkay (new)

Emmkay | 252 comments Hi everyone -

I had a slog of a week involving some very late work nights, but I did manage to finish Old Filth, by Jane Gardam, which I thought was fantastic. Have also begun reading The Alice Network for an in-person book club, which is ok so far.

Happy to hear ppl are liking Indigenous Writes!

message 18: by Story (new)

Story (storyheart) Old Filth is one of my all time favourite books, Emmkay. Such a tender, moving story but with humour too.

message 19: by Mj (new)

Mj @ Emmkay & @ Storyheart - I remember loving Old Filth as well. Have been meaning to read the next two books in the trilogy as well. Thanks for the reminder.

message 20: by Story (new)

Story (storyheart) Mj wrote: "@ Emmkay & @ Storyheart - I remember loving Old Filth as well. Have been meaning to read the next two books in the trilogy as well. Thanks for the reminder."

I just read the second and liked it (though not as much as OF.) But I couldn't get through the 3rd. Maybe bad timing though I did hear a podcast interview with Gardam in which she said she doesn't like the 3rd one either because she came to detest Veneering. The podcast is here in case either of you are interested:

Have either of you read her A Long Way from Verona?

message 21: by Emmkay (new)

Emmkay | 252 comments No, Old Filth was my first Gardam. I will certainly read more of her!

message 22: by Heather(Gibby) (new)

Heather(Gibby) (heather-gibby) | 428 comments I just got back from a ten day road trip to Vail, Colorado. I got a lot of reading done while my husband did 90% of the driving.

I read Bear, which was quite a surprising read! Not sure I have come to grips with it yet.
I also read The Wreckage which was the third book by Michael Crummey, I gave it five stars, but I think that Sweetland is still my favorite.

I read Surfacing which was quite good, Margaret Atwood sure is diverse in how she writes.

The other Canlit that I read (actually in audio) was Do Not Say We Have Nothing the Chinese names and words were a little confusing at first, but sorted itself out as I got into the book. It is a beautifully written novel.

I am now started into An Unnecessary Woman

message 23: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisafriel) | 202 comments Hi Everyone! My reading has really slowed down since April. Too many things going on - and outside instead of reading.

I finished reading You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero. It was excellent!

I am currently reading The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan. It is interesting so far. I do plan to read our monthly read - I am next in line at the library.

message 24: by Elinor (last edited Jun 21, 2018 10:45AM) (new)

Elinor | 207 comments Just back from a long driving trip across the prairies (5,000 kilometres). We stopped at the National Historic Site at Batoche, which was very interesting. My recent reading of Song of Batoche really informed my visit! One thing that was barely mentioned in the novel was the stunning beauty of this spot overlooking the river. The cemetery there has the graves of those killed in the battle, as well as recent graves from residents of the area since this is still an active graveyard. There is a very well-done interpretive centre explaining the genesis of the Metis culture, which was especially relevant to me as my forefathers belonged to the Metis group that farmed in Red River, Manitoba.

message 25: by Emmkay (new)

Emmkay | 252 comments That sounds fascinating, Elinor! As I was reading the novel, I thought how much I'd like to visit the location - often having read a book set somewhere makes a visit that much more meaningful.

message 26: by Story (new)

Story (storyheart) That sounds like a wonderful literary-infused trip, Elinor.

message 27: by ❀ Susan (new)

❀ Susan G (susanayearofbooksblogcom) | 3567 comments Mod
Welcome back Elinor - sounds like a terrific trip and great to hear about the Site at Batoche!

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