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2016-19 Activities & Challenges > 2019 Fall Flurry of Holidays Challenge--Discussion and Planning

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message 1: by Nicole R (last edited Sep 16, 2019 05:40AM) (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7717 comments The weather is getting cooler, pumpkin and apple flavored/scented items abound, and I went into HomeGoods the other day and about passed out I was so excited about all of the fall colors!

So, you know what that means.....it is time to READ HOLIDAY THEMED BOOKS!!

We will once against be hosting our totally laid back, pop in and out as you would like, be creative with your holidays/seasons Fall Flurry of Holidays Challenge for October/November/December.

Some suggestions are:
October -- Halloween, scary, Canadian Thanksgiving, autumn setting, etc.
November -- Thanksgiving, Veterans' Day, Native American themed, etc.
December -- Christmas, Hanukkah, winter themed, etc.

Can you think of something else? We are open to that too! Especially for you southern hemisphere participants who are looking out onto summer weather.

Each month, I will start one thread under the 2019 Activities and Challenges Folder for all reviews for that month, which worked excellently in previous years.

For each review you post, you will get a participation point. BUT, be sure to cross post in the Monthly Tag or Monthly Other reads folder to get those participation points too. Basically, this is just a bonus :)

I will be adding these books to the "Fall Flurry of Holidays 2019" shelf, but feel free to give me a hand if you want to shelf your own books.

So, without further ado, let's discuss the books we plan to read! Because planning is one of the best parts.


message 3: by Idit (new)

Idit | 1028 comments How funny. I was planning to write how I have difficulties with November and ask for help - and then I read your second message.

So I also have problems with November
Looking at my experiences from both Israel and Australia ... November is a bit of a dud.
No holiday. No dramatic season change...

Help?

The only thing I can think of is Melbourne Cup. Read something about horses(?)


message 4: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments I am not a "holiday theme reader", but this year I do I have a few I may contribute and get some bonus points!

I need to read some Halloween books for another challenge- has anyone read Three Dark Crowns? It sounds spooky to me.

My daughter is a huge Ray Bradbury fan and is constantly poking me to read some of his books-she owns quite a few and I am looking at Something Wicked This Way Comes orThe Halloween Tree

Also need a Thanksgiving book...this I need help with!


message 5: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments @ Nicole-I vote, once again, for Cowboy Christmas Cowboy Christmas Redemption-LOL


message 6: by Joanne (last edited Sep 16, 2019 06:47AM) (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments Idit wrote: "How funny. I was planning to write how I have difficulties with November and ask for help - and then I read your second message.

So I also have problems with November
Looking at my experiences fr..."


Having never been either place I am not sure what the weather is like-is it the dead of summer, or the end of Spring? Thinking something about a farm maybe?


message 7: by Meli (new)

Meli (melihooker) | 3154 comments October is easy-peasy, I have so many scary / Halloween related reads, so I need to narrow it down.
But one I already plan to read in October is My Best Friend's Exorcism. If the October tag is spooky, even better!

November is trickier, but I like your recommendation, Nicole of Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI. Unfortunately it is on my trim so I will have to just hold out hope for it to get picked in November.

Last year I tried a holiday themed romance but I didn't enjoy it as much as I do the Lifetime / Hallmark movies this time of year, so I will need to come up with another game plan. I have No Exit which is set in winter, but also another trim book. If it doesn't get picked for December I can read that.


message 8: by Jgrace (new)

Jgrace | 2762 comments This is why I love the PBT bookshelf. ( Thank you admins for maintaining it) I can look at the past 3 years to get ideas for this year. It's also possible to see how interest in this activity has grown. We went from 72 books in 2016 to 143 books last year.

I'm only thinking about October right now. I think I will read Edgar Allen Poe. His stories scared me witless when I was in Jr. High, but that is so far in the dark ages that I've mostly forgotten them. And, I've been saving The Broken Girls which should be a good ghost story.

I recommend Melmoth. I really wish someone would read it so we could discuss it.


message 9: by Nicole R (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7717 comments Idit wrote: "The only thing I can think of is Melbourne Cup. Read something about horses(?)"

If you go this route, I LOVED Seabiscuit: An American Legend by Laura Hillenbrand. I know it is not about the Melbourne Cup specifically, but it is about horseracing!


message 10: by Nicole R (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7717 comments Joanne wrote: "@ Nicole-I vote, once again, for Cowboy Christmas Cowboy Christmas Redemption-LOL"

Oh, I am sure it will happen! Though I learned my lesson last year by reading too many cowboy-themed holiday books, so this may be the only one!


message 11: by Meli (new)

Meli (melihooker) | 3154 comments Jgrace wrote: "This is why I love the PBT bookshelf. ( Thank you admins for maintaining it) I can look at the past 3 years to get ideas for this year. It's also possible to see how interest in this activity has g..."

I always forget to check the PBT shelves!

Regarding Melmoth, it is on my list but I am not sure when I can get to it... I will share my review when I do.


message 12: by Amy (new)

Amy | 8299 comments Oh this is easy! I have been planning all year! I have lists on the secret phone TBR just for this challenge.

I often recommend to folks for Halloween, The Fifth Petal. I read it a couple of years ago right at this time and it was just the perfect fall flurry book. For me for October I will be reading the Witches of St Petersburg. I’m at the library returning it now, and I’ve taken it out for nine weeks at least 3 to 4 times already. I have to return it now so I can take it out again next week. But I always thought if I couldn’t get to it every month I would certainly have it be my October book. I’m really excited about it.

For November I am reading Gratitude by Oliver Sacks.

December, I have a whole host of titles. The Snow Gypsy (also being returned now) and the Winter Queen. But definitely my Witches Sequel by Ami McKay. Forget the first, Half Spent a Yuletide Night. I have read 12 of the 14 books I absolutely wanted to read this year, and saved the sequels of the Winter Queen and Half Spent Yuletide for December. Have they already picked out the 15 or so books I must’ve read in 2020? Of course I have! It’s already on the phone TBR - the True Tome. One long document that has everything I ever wanted or needed pertaining to books. Including what I’m reading next, what still to go on the TBR..... the whole night be.


message 13: by Nicole R (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7717 comments Amy wrote: "For November I am reading Gratitude by Oliver Sacks..."

This is a great idea for November/Thanksgiving!


message 14: by Meli (new)

Meli (melihooker) | 3154 comments Here is another one on my TBR that seems perfect for October... The Saturday Night Ghost Club. Not sure if I will be able to fit it in though.


message 15: by Joanne (last edited Sep 16, 2019 10:26AM) (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments Jgrace wrote: "This is why I love the PBT bookshelf. ( Thank you admins for maintaining it) I can look at the past 3 years to get ideas for this year. It's also possible to see how interest in this activity has g..."

Poe's stories scare the be-jezza's out me too-I have never read them but I remember Vincent Price starring in a lot of the movies made from his works. There was a show here in Detroit, during the 60's, on Saturday nights when they would run spooky movies-and this was one of the few times we got to watch TV-so even though I hated to be scared I would stay in the living room(most likely keeping my eyes closed) with everyone else. I remember Fall of The House of Usher and Pit and The Pendulum keeping me awake for days!

I won The Essex Serpent, by Sarah Perry last year in a give away. I have wanted to try another of her books-Melmoth might be it!


message 16: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments Amy wrote:Witches of St Petersburg.

This looks really good! If I can find a copy, how about a buddy read?


message 17: by Amy (new)

Amy | 8299 comments Yes to both Nicole and Joanne! You know Nicole and I have read so many books in common this year. I'd be curious what percentage of the shelf was doubled. We are on such a twinned track for 2019, although the summer has been less twinned than the late winter and spring. I love hearing your thoughts Nicole on the books we are reading so close together, so it would be neat if you picked Gratitude as well. And Joanne and anyone else, a buddy read for the Witches of St. Petersburg has already begun! I'm thrilled.


message 18: by Jenny (new)

Jenny (jennywilliams88) | 677 comments Nicole R wrote: "So, I have been building my list for about a month now. I will certainly not get to all of these books, but these are what I will be choosing from.

I always struggle with November. I always say I ..."


I can thoroughly recommend the Audible version of The Stranger Diaries


message 19: by Jenny (last edited Sep 16, 2019 11:23AM) (new)

Jenny (jennywilliams88) | 677 comments Joanne wrote: "I am not a "holiday theme reader", but this year I do I have a few I may contribute and get some bonus points!

I need to read some Halloween books for another challenge- has anyone read [book:Thre..."


I love love love the Three Dark Crowns series - I think the final book comes out soon! I wouldn't necessarily classify it as spooky, but will work for halloween - witches!


message 20: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 5645 comments Haven't even begun to plan ... although I'll probably read a Louise Erdrich book for November (Native Americans). My F2F book club is discussing Tommy Orange's There There in November, but I've read it already (might re-read, as I'm discussion leader).

OCTOBER option .... National Hispanic Heritage month runs Sept 15 - Oct 15. Perhaps PBTers might like to read something that fits that celebration.


message 21: by Joanne (last edited Sep 16, 2019 12:46PM) (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments Amy wrote: "Yes to both Nicole and Joanne! You know Nicole and I have read so many books in common this year. I'd be curious what percentage of the shelf was doubled. We are on such a twinned track for 2019, a..."

I have to order through my inter-library-I will do that today, because it usual takes a week or two-yippee for a bud-read!

EDIT_ ordered and on it's way!


message 22: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments Jenny wrote: "Joanne wrote: "I am not a "holiday theme reader", but this year I do I have a few I may contribute and get some bonus points!

I need to read some Halloween books for another challenge- has anyone ..."


Thanks!


message 23: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments Book Concierge wrote: "Haven't even begun to plan ... although I'll probably read a Louise Erdrich book for November (Native Americans). My F2F book club is discussing Tommy Orange's There There in Novemb..."

Thanks for the tip on Hispanic Heritage! -gives me some less "spooky " options!


message 24: by Nicole R (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7717 comments Amy wrote: "I love hearing your thoughts Nicole on the books we are reading so close together, so it would be neat if you picked Gratitude as well."

I won't be reading it because I have other books I want to read for that month, but I like the theme of Gratitude for the month of November! Perhaps others will be interested in joining you on your read!


message 25: by Nicole R (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7717 comments Jenny wrote: "I can thoroughly recommend the Audible version of The Stranger Diaries."

Good to know! I did add it to my audio wish to remind myself that I am interested in it and will likely go that route.


message 26: by Nicole R (new)

Nicole R (drnicoler) | 7717 comments Book Concierge wrote: "OCTOBER option .... National Hispanic Heritage month runs Sept 15 - Oct 15. Perhaps PBTers might like to read something that fits that celebration..."

That is a great idea too! I love that the members think more outside the box on these things than I do.


message 27: by Meli (new)

Meli (melihooker) | 3154 comments I love the idea of celebrating Hispanic Heritage month as well, great idea! But with my slow reading and love of Halloween I will stick to the spooky stories for October. I actually have a lot of great choices for Hispanic Heritage though... we'll see what I can manage.


message 28: by Karin (last edited Sep 16, 2019 02:42PM) (new)

Karin | 6928 comments This year I will try again for this since I bought a few for a quarter each at the Friends of the Library with our Fall Flurries in mind and I am hoping they will be funny. I have no idea why it's so hard for me to find holiday books I want to read with the exception of October since I loved Halloween until I was in my early 20s and then I didn't like it any more (still like costumes, though.)

So:

October: Plum Spooky by Janet Evanovich and/or Wicked Appetite
November: Thanksgiving by Janet Evanovich
December: Visions of Sugar Plums by Janet Evanovich


message 29: by Theresa (new)

Theresa | 6336 comments Yippee! While for me Fall Flurries is all about December and Christmas cozies and romances - yes I am that shallow. This year I need to read a fall themed book for a challenge, so I'm actually hoping for spooky to win October theme and allow me to knock off 2 challenges with one book. This year it is going to be fun cozies and Christmas all the way because I am reading Proust...and have a couple of biographies and such on my TBR to read by year end for challenges. That's enough serious.

But first, a very important announcement for all Lady O fans: The newest Lady O, Lady Osbaldesstone's Plum Puddings, is to be released October 17, 2019 and is available for pre-order.

My go-to for holiday themed books are cozies and for Christmas I add in romance. I'm now just realizing that I can fit those romantic suspense books on my Kindle into November if it features a vet or someone in the armed services -- yay!

My Christmas TBR is enormous and I start reading Christmas early. Some suggestions I have for those who don't want the typical Christmas themed romance, but just a good fictional story around the holidays:

The Christmas Spirit by Elisabeth Fairchild - historical - and a ghost story.
Home for Christmas by Holly Chamberlin - contemporary - woman facing empty nest

both are marketed as romance but I found them far more, with romance secondary if not tertiary to the main story.

And as a possible fit for November/Thanksgiving:
Knit the Season by Kate Jacobs - 3rd and final installment in series but think it can be read as a standalone -- I just read it for Christmas in July and I read the other 2 in the series years ago so they were vague. It covers the period from mid November through New Years to Valentine's Day with a significant section on Thanksgiving. If not familiar, this revolves around a yarn shop in NYC and the trials and tribulations of group of knitters who meet there regularly to knit.

One last plug for Christmas reading -- a short story collection
The Usual Santas A Soho Crime Holiday Anthology by Peter Lovesey - The Usual Santas: A Soho Crime Holiday Anthology. Really good and the best cover ever!


message 30: by Joi (new)

Joi (missjoious) | 3782 comments I think I'll just copy Nicole's October and November-
Pumpkinheads looks super cute, I had never heard of it till now. Rainbow can be hit or miss for me, but usually her YA is a winner.

Also I can always continue a paranormal series to check off October, or a true crime. Which I'm always into- lol. If spooky gets picked I'll look further into something a bit more horror-y.

Love the idea of Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI for November. I always have trouble finding something for November. I think two years ago I read a military book- for Veteran's day as my Fall Flurry.

The newest Confessions of a Shopaholic is holiday themed, and coming out this year- so I'll probably be reading Christmas Shopaholic as at least one of my December reads.


message 31: by Theresa (new)

Theresa | 6336 comments There are a lot of cozy mysteries set at holidays. Obviously Halloween and Christmas feature in large numbers. But there is probably a cozy mystery or two for any holiday you can think of -- and here's a resource for finding them:

https://www.cozy-mystery.com/holiday-...

From personal reading, I can say that for Halloween, Jane Haddam and Susan Wittig Albert write more sophisticated books than the average cozy. But there are many here I have not read. And there are classics listed too -- Like Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House (which I've never read).

If you look at the list in the link - there are cozies for Labor Day, Hannukah, Thanksgiving, New Years.

Hmmm - and I see Faye Kellerman listed under Thanksgiving - her mysteries are not cozies, they are police procedurals/detective and very dark, and often have interesting themes relating to Judaism. The first in the series is The Ritual Bath, if I recall correctly.

Another in the Thanksgiving list that I have read and really liked:
Zero-Degree Murder by Rowland. And I see the first Louise Penney is listed - although I did not like it. That was set at the Canadian Thanksgiving -- which is October?


message 32: by Karin (new)

Karin | 6928 comments Theresa wrote: "There are a lot of cozy mysteries set at holidays. Obviously Halloween and Christmas feature in large numbers. But there is probably a cozy mystery or two for any holiday you can think of -- and he..."

Wow, that's quite a list. I want something funny, but humour is often very subjective and can even depend on one's mood.


message 33: by Joanne (last edited Sep 16, 2019 03:42PM) (new)


message 34: by Holly R W (new)

Holly R W | 1176 comments I can recommend "November Road" by Lou Berney for November. I enjoyed reading it this past year. It would also be good for the crime fiction tag if it is chosen for October.


message 35: by Theresa (new)

Theresa | 6336 comments Karin wrote: "Theresa wrote: "There are a lot of cozy mysteries set at holidays. Obviously Halloween and Christmas feature in large numbers. But there is probably a cozy mystery or two for any holiday you can th..."

Many of the cozies are funny to me. I like ones with a touch of humor more than dark psychological or police procedural. I want light entertainment.

The more punny the title, the more likely it is to be humorous. Ones where pets play a big role -- or kids -- are usually funny.


message 36: by Theresa (new)

Theresa | 6336 comments Holly R W wrote: "I can recommend "November Road" by Lou Berney for November. I enjoyed reading it this past year. It would also be good for the crime fiction tag if it is chosen for October."

This reminds me that a lot of the cozies on those lists also fit crime fiction - certainly Zero-Degree Murder does, and any featuring a real detective or police.


message 37: by LibraryCin (last edited Sep 16, 2019 06:02PM) (new)

LibraryCin | 8129 comments As always, I am planning to participate, but I haven't yet done my research. I will likely focus on Halloween (Oct), Remembrance Day (Nov), Christmas or Winter, in general (Dec).

Will be back with some options that might work for me...

ETA: And Nicole, the tag/shelf is now added.


message 38: by LibraryCin (new)

LibraryCin | 8129 comments Idit wrote: "How funny. I was planning to write how I have difficulties with November and ask for help - and then I read your second message.r..."

Does Australia have some type of Remembrance Day in November? I always read something about a war - the soldiers and the actual war, not necessarily the holocaust.


message 39: by LibraryCin (new)

LibraryCin | 8129 comments I'd like to make a recommendation if anyone does want to read for Veterans' Day/Remembrance Day (I've made this recommendation so many times!):

Longest Day: June 6, 1944 by Cornelius Ryan.

Written in the 1950s, the author was able to survey and interview soldiers and others who were actually there and/or involved in D-Day.


message 40: by Theresa (new)

Theresa | 6336 comments An option for November (11th) -- Armistice Day - which honors the end of WWI. Very important in Europe especially France and England. In fact it is key to Dorothy L. Sayers mysteryThe Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club. There are probably other titles out there.

Which reminds me that there is also Guy Fawkes Night in November (5th) - and the third book in a Stephanie Laurens historical romance series has its climax that night -- The Greatest Challenge Of Them All. The whole trilogy is set in November during the early days of Victoria's reign, and the romance and suspense revolves around a plot to blow up Parliament or some such.

Surely someone has written a mystery or two where the murder takes place on Guy Fawkes Night?!


message 41: by annapi (new)

annapi | 4916 comments The next Lady Osbaldestone (Lady Osbaldestone's Plum Puddings) comes out Oct. 17th! I want to get it but it will be hard to wait until December to read it!


message 42: by Jgrace (new)

Jgrace | 2762 comments hich reminds me that there is also Guy Fawkes Night in November (5th)

-Dust and Shadow: An Account of the Ripper Killings by Dr. John H. Watson is a really good and very gruesome, Sherlock Holmes spin-off that takes place around Guy Fawkes.


message 43: by NancyJ (new)

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 5002 comments Karin wrote: "This year I will try again for this since I bought a few for a quarter each at the Friends of the Library with our Fall Flurries in mind and I am hoping they will be funny. I have no idea why it's ..."

Janet Evanovich is so funny. She's got you covered for all three months. I could use a dose of her humor too.


message 44: by Idit (new)

Idit | 1028 comments October:
I'm planning to read the The Crucible.
It also help me with 'chose a book by cover' challenge, because look:
The Crucible by Arthur Miller
I have a feeling either annapi or Jgrace mentioned the book as a possible Witches option?

November... I'm stumped!
I could read book about horses or gambling ('The race that stops the nation' happens in Nov) but I don't really care much about either. Maybe I can read Black Beauty - put a tick on a classic I avoided as a child...

Here's an idea: Rabin was murdered in November...
I've found some fiction books about that time in Israel
Homesick and a novella in hebrew that I couldn't find in Goodreads

December
I was planning to read Christmas Days: 12 Stories and 12 Feasts for 12 Days last year, and didn't. Maybe it will happen this year


message 45: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments LibraryCin wrote: "I'd like to make a recommendation if anyone does want to read for Veterans' Day/Remembrance Day (I've made this recommendation so many times!):

Longest Day: June 6, 1944 by Cornelius..."


This is on my short list Cindy! Sure you and Michael had a hand in putting there!


message 46: by Joanne (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments NancyJ wrote: "Karin wrote: "This year I will try again for this since I bought a few for a quarter each at the Friends of the Library with our Fall Flurries in mind and I am hoping they will be funny. I have no ..."

# 26 comes out in November! I love her too


message 47: by Joanne (last edited Sep 17, 2019 05:56AM) (new)

Joanne (joabroda1) | 7254 comments RegenerationTheresa wrote: "An option for November (11th) -- Armistice Day - which honors the end of WWI. Very important in Europe especially France and England. In fact it is key to Dorothy L. Sayers mystery[bo..."


I have a few for WWI on my shelf

[book:Regeneration|5872]-(this link won't work)

and Life Class both by Pat Barker who wrote The Silence of the Girls

The Hello Girls: America's First Women Soldiers

The Long Way Home


message 48: by NancyJ (new)

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 5002 comments Joanne wrote: "NancyJ wrote: "Karin wrote: "This year I will try again for this since I bought a few for a quarter each at the Friends of the Library with our Fall Flurries in mind and I am hoping they will be fu..."

#26 of....? Evanovich/Plum?


message 49: by Jgrace (new)

Jgrace | 2762 comments I'd forgotten about The Crucible, which was one I thought about reading last year but didn't get to. Thanks for the reminder, Idit. I've also intended to reread Macbeth in October, but I haven't managed it yet.

For Armistice/Veteran's day , this one that I just read, Fly Away Peter, was a heartrending WW1 story. Some year I will get around to reading Tuchman's The Guns of August, but I don't know if it will be this November.


message 50: by NancyJ (last edited Sep 17, 2019 09:00AM) (new)

NancyJ (nancyjjj) | 5002 comments Joi wrote: "I think I'll just copy Nicole's October and ..."


Killers of the Flower Moon is a great book about Native Americans. I might read There There.

I like the idea of reading about Native Americans in November (which reminds me to get that DNA test). It might be a bit of a bummer to discuss at Thanksgiving though because Americans didn't treat them well at all.


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