As the Page Turns (the Book Thread)

Wyliefan

Trying to appease the skategods
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28,609
I'm also probably going to give up on Where the Crawdads Sing, as I'm several chapters in and just can't get into it and the reviews here aren't convincing me it's worth it to stick with it.
It's not, IMHO. Majorly overrated book.
 

Prancer

Needs More Sleep
Staff member
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49,132
I have just finished reading The Bookshop of Yesterdays by Amy Meyerson...

I guessed/figured out the big secret early on. but it's more about the emotional journey of the heroine getting there herself.
I just finished this one. I also guessed the big secret early on. But I have to say that I found every character in the book really annoying. The things they did (and didn't) do advanced the plot but it was all so stupid. "Oh, I just couldn't tell you (even though it was absolutely inevitable that you were going to find out anyway and be REALLY ANGRY that I didn't tell you sooner)."

I also thought Miranda was just as self-absorbed as everyone described Billy as being, and I almost LOL when Lee described Miranda as "calm." She spent half the book screaming or bitching at different people and then thinking they needed to get over it because she was so stressed and they should be more considerate of her feelings.

It's not, IMHO. Majorly overrated book.
Yeah, I don't get it. A friend of mine is in a book club and her group liked it so much they've decided to read it again because it is so beautiful.
 

Habs

Well-Known Member
Messages
5,403
I'm also probably going to give up on Where the Crawdads Sing, as I'm several chapters in and just can't get into it and the reviews here aren't convincing me it's worth it to stick with it.
I didn't mind it, actually. I found it quick and easy to read with an interesting story, but it was full of flaws and I'll never be convinced that it's a beautiful piece of literature.
 

genevieve

drinky typo pbp, closet hugger
Staff member
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36,505
I just finished Hollow Kingdom, which is getting rave reviews. It's a very different book than I thought based on the description. It's a rollicking good time, despite its flaws, although the ending was just ok. Overall, I take this as a shining example of the decline in editing in modern publishing :drama:

Also, the book takes place in Seattle, and the author and I have apparently never been in the same places, ever :p

I'm now on to Girl, Woman, Other, and even just a few pages in I am loving it.
 

antmanb

Well-Known Member
Messages
9,682
Back in December Amazon pushed a 99p for three month trial of Kindle Unlimited so I decided to take it on the basis that one book that was available would be £3.99. I've read a few things but basically i'm using it to try things it recommends rather than finding anything i'm actively looking to read on it so the trial will be cancelled before the full subscription (£7.99 per month) kicks in.

I read Once A Pilgrim by James Deegan - it was very much a like a Jack Reacher page turner which was great to read while I was travelling with work. I suspect this will become a series - the protagonist is an ex SAS soldier who now works as a security man. The story flashed back to when he was stationed in Ireland during the "troubles" and I found it really gripping and interesting, more so than some other thrillers that it has suggested to me.
 

puglover

Well-Known Member
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1,936
Thanks for the recommendation of Once Upon a Pilgrim. I have a large library of audible books and have been listening again to the earlier Jack Reacher books and I have forgotten quite a bit so I am enjoying them. I will try you suggestion.
 

Habs

Well-Known Member
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5,403
I just finished Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid. I was intrigued and it has a lot of buzz right now. It was.... okay? It was an easy read and I enjoyed it, but I feel like I maybe missed the point. :slinkaway
 

Erin

Well-Known Member
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9,585
I spent much of the morning watching the Russian women's short programs and will spend much of the afternoon reading the novel The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls.

The irony is not lost on me.
I'll be interested what you think of the book - I read it earlier this year.
I finally broke my streak of not finishing books with this one. I thought it was interesting and a quick read but I felt like it kind of ended in the middle of the story without really wrapping things up.
Also, the bit at the end about Baby V's issues with food seemed to come out of nowhere and broke the "show don't tell" rule.
I also didn't care for the non-straightforward way that Althea and Proctor's crimes were revealed to the reader or how they always stayed kind of murky. So a bit of a mixed review overall.

If you are looking for a fast, interesting read, check out Turbulence. It's about 12 flights (it ends up going around the world) and the people who interact on the flight, or in relation to someone on the previous flight. I read it in about an hour.
Very fast read. I actually wish it had been a bit longer as I felt like some of the stories could have been fleshed out a bit more. I felt like we were just getting to know a character and then they were gone. But I guess that is the point of it.

The other book that I tried to get through but just ran out of time was Ruth Ware's The Turn of the Key. It was not bad and the only book of the ones I didn't finish that I put back on hold at the library so that I can finish. But it didn't make me feel like I want to read any more of her books either. I probably would have been fine if I'd totally passed on it, but since I did start it, I'd like to finish.
 

Japanfan

Well-Known Member
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22,695
The other book that I tried to get through but just ran out of time was Ruth Ware's The Turn of the Key. It was not bad and the only book of the ones I didn't finish that I put back on hold at the library so that I can finish. But it didn't make me feel like I want to read any more of her books either. I probably would have been fine if I'd totally passed on it, but since I did start it, I'd like to finish.
That was the first Ware book I read, already. I enjoyed how

she wove the smarthouse into the haunted house theme

But I did find the ending a bit underwhelming.

I was inspired to read more of her works, and enjoyed The Girl in Cabin 10 and The Death of Mrs. Weasly, the former moreso. I'm just getting started on +, Ware's first, and it's certainly grabbed my interest already.[/SPOILER]
 

Susan1

Well-Known Member
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6,111
Has anybody read the books that Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt for the Bone Collector t.v. series is based on - Jeffery Deaver. There are over 10 of them, plus he has other series that are based on other characters and overlap. The t.v. show is o.k., even though I keep yelling "why didn't you...............".
I just wonder if they are going to be too bloody or violent or more like James Patterson.
 

rfisher

Let the skating begin
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61,900
The new Pendergast is out. While I like that they've returned to Pendergast solving the mystery, why, do they insist on keeping Constance around? :drama: This one is very curious and set on Sanibel Island in Florida. Interesting supporting characters, except for the whole Constance thing and they brought back Roger Smithback (Bill Smithback's brother if you've followed all the series).
 

puglover

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,936
The new Pendergast is out. While I like that they've returned to Pendergast solving the mystery, why, do they insist on keeping Constance around? :drama: This one is very curious and set on Sanibel Island in Florida. Interesting supporting characters, except for the whole Constance thing and they brought back Roger Smithback (Bill Smithback's brother if you've followed all the series).
I just downloaded it from audible. Rumor has it that Jefferson Mays, who has replaced Rene Auberjonois as the narrator is very good.
 

PrincessLeppard

Holding Alex Johnson's Pineapple
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26,595
I just finished Rated by Melissa Grey. It's a YA novel, and everyone has a constantly changing social ranking. Privileges are reserved for those with the highest ratings. It's told through the eyes of six different narrators, and the voices are all distinct, so that's nice.

I will say that it all wrapped up a little too pat, and that maybe it would've benefitted from being a duet. As I neared the end, I was sure it was going to be continued, but nope. Still, not bad.
 

missing

Well-Known To Whom She Wonders
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2,911
If, like me, you are a total sucker for books about the Titanic, I can recommend a new one, The Ship Of Dreams by Gareth Russell (apparently its British title is The Darksome Bounds of a Failing World).

Every book I read about the Titanic teaches me something new, largely because I retain nothing from one book to the next. This one seemed particularly good about exploring various myths and debunking some of them. Like all Titanic books, it has an interesting set of characters, and since I retain nothing, I'm always surprised by who lives and who dies.

The only people I consistently remember dying are Isador and Ida Straus. They show up in everything about the Titanic, the older couple who go down with the ship because she wouldn't be parted from him and he refused to replace anyone else who might be saved. I saw on Twitter today that this is Isador Straus's 175th birthday. I love those kinds of coincidences:


The Bowery Boys Podcast

@BoweryBoys


Isidor Straus, owner of @Macys with brother Nathan and founder of
@EdAlliance , was born 175 years ago today in Bavaria. In 1912 he died (as did his wife Ida) in the sinking of the RMS Titanic. Straus Park was built on the Upper West Side to their memory. https://bit.ly/39h4wCr
 

missing

Well-Known To Whom She Wonders
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2,911
I learned one fact from the most recent Titanic book that I am determined to retain so I'll share it with you (it's a very cool fact).

The bands on the Titanic (and presumably other ocean liners of the era) had to know a lot of different songs. The people on the liner would be given a long list of songs and, like a takeout restaurant, instead of requesting a specific item by name, they would ask the band to play Number 42 or Number 118, and the band would then play the requested song.

And that's how the term "number" came to be associated with songs. "Now, for my next number..."
 

PrincessLeppard

Holding Alex Johnson's Pineapple
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26,595
I totally forgot to mention that one of the main characters in Rated is a figure skater and the author actually knows what she's talking about. :duh:
 

Rob

Beach Bum
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14,790
Just finished Murmur of Bees by Sofia Segovia (English version). Very good.
 

genevieve

drinky typo pbp, closet hugger
Staff member
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36,505
I'm so looking forward to that book, am #103 waiting for 63 copies, so it shouldn't be long.
I really enjoyed the storytelling and characters, although it got a little hard to keep track of who was who. As if the author got SO involved in each individual character that she forgot the structure of her own book and had to pull it together hastily at the end. Still recommend! I would welcome another look at several of the characters in this one.

I learned that Emily St John Mandel (Station Eleven) has a new book coming out, and I can't even request a copy at the library yet, so I got one of her older books, The Singer's Gun. It's kind of a thriller, but also kind of a meditative exploration of identity and relative morality, and filled with quirky people and scenarios. Some might find the lack of structure, both in story and in characters' behaviors and choices, frustrating or annoying, but I found it compelling. And the writing was gorgeous.

TBH, I know that I loved Station Eleven when I read it, but now I barely remember the story - I kinda wonder if this will be the same in a few years.

Next up: The Man Who Saw Everything by Deborah Levy. I don't know much about it, it was on a trusted friend's Goodreads list. @PrincessLeppard are you familiar? Seems like it might be up your alley?
 

genevieve

drinky typo pbp, closet hugger
Staff member
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36,505
@genevieve I think I reviewed it somewhere in this thread. It was okay.
Oh, ha, I just went back and we already discussed it. Apparently I was considering taking it off my list after your faint praise. Well, it's here now and doesn't look too long so I'll give it a try. Although the GF has a book she finished that she loved so I might just try that one instead (On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong)
 

Erin

Well-Known Member
Messages
9,585
I read The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes over the past couple of days. It's a fictional account of the Packhorse Librarians of Kentucky, told mostly through the eyes of Alice, a fictional woman from England in an unhappy marriage. It was OK. As with many historical novels, I enjoyed getting the chance to learn more about a piece of history I knew nothing about. It was also a quick read. I did find that the main character was a little too plucky and that most of the characters were either good or bad, not a lot of depth in any of them. Even the one character who has both good and bad actions is still written very thinly. There is a controversy out there about whether the book was plagiarized from The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson. Based on the articles I've read, the similarities aren't that out there that they couldn't have been arrived at independently, but I'll be curious if I feel the same way after reading Richardson's book.

I am almost finished the autobiography by Elton John "ME". I would highly recommend it. He is much funnier than I imagined and so much of it is self deprecating. He is not above a few catty remarks and spills the beans on others a bit but not mean spirited or malicious - at least that was how I saw it. We know so much of the story of his life but it is nice to read it from his point of view of experiencing it.
I'm in the middle of this one now and really enjoying it. I agree about how funny and self-deprecating it is. Lots of dry British humour in there that sometimes I miss on the first read of the sentence and have to go back and reread to realize what he really said.
 

her grace

standing with Mariah
Messages
3,595
I read News of the World by Paulette Jiles. It's set in Texas during Reconstruction and is about a man who purchases newspapers in Dallas who then travels to small towns, booking halls and reading the news to the paying guests. But then he is asked to deliver a recovered Kiowa captive back to her relatives, and the story tells of his time as caretaker to this 10-year-old child.
This is a heartwarming read, and handles the issues of reintegrating a child captive into white society sensitively. It's also almost too good with the virtuous Captain Kidd functioning as the male equivalent of the manic pixie dream girl. But I liked it anyway!

I'm reading Anna Karenina right now, which is very good. But I am desperately in need of something light after I finish this. And modern. And short. Much, much, shorter. Any recommendations?
 

puglover

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,936
I read News of the World by Paulette Jiles. It's set in Texas during Reconstruction and is about a man who purchases newspapers in Dallas who then travels to small towns, booking halls and reading the news to the paying guests. But then he is asked to deliver a recovered Kiowa captive back to her relatives, and the story tells of his time as caretaker to this 10-year-old child.
This is a heartwarming read, and handles the issues of reintegrating a child captive into white society sensitively. It's also almost too good with the virtuous Captain Kidd functioning as the male equivalent of the manic pixie dream girl. But I liked it anyway!

I'm reading Anna Karenina right now, which is very good. But I am desperately in need of something light after I finish this. And modern. And short. Much, much, shorter. Any recommendations?
Not really a short book but one I read recently or reread and forgot about was The Testament by John Grisham. My husband had recommended one of his newer books to me but I got mixed up and got this older one - written over ten years ago, I believe. Anyway, I had given up on Mr. Grisham but I really enjoyed this book. It is a legal drama but involves a big adventure and a number of times I laughed out loud at his cast of characters and their antics. I was sorry when I finished it.
 

Susan1

Well-Known Member
Messages
6,111
Skating related "typo" - I've been going back and reading old Harlan Coben standalones (finished all the Myron and Mickey Bolitar series). So 2008's Hold Tight, he's writing about all the old toys in this kid's drawer and says Yamaguchis!!! Uh, tamagotchis? I knew that's what he meant, and I had to look up the spelling. But, geez. Or maybe he has pictures of Olympic figure skaters in there? :)

Another part, the bad guy is talking about a DVD of The Sound of Music and goes off on this rant about how they are singing about doorbells. He's supposed to be highly intelligent and well read (and a psychopath, but anyway)...........but he knows My Favorite Things and says how stupid that doorbells are favorite things for like five minutes. If he knows so much about the movie, he would know that it was Liesl that mentioned doorbells (not Maria or the other kids) because she had a crush on Rolf and was hoping he would ring the doorbell to deliver a telegram. It was a private joke with Maria. Oh well. :rolleyes:

ETA - never mind - they do sing "doorbells" in the song. I guess because the sound of a doorbell was prettier back then, and it meant that you were going to get company that you wanted to see (not Nazis ha ha).
 
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DORISPULASKI

Watching submarine races
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11,638
Another vote to skip Where The Crawdads Sing. It read to me like a redo of the Gene Stratton-Porter's A Girl of the Limberlost and Freckles
but without the eugenics crap. I asked a friend why she liked it so much, and I think it was because of the fantasy of girl/woman in control it gave her? In any case, I finished it, but counted the time wasted.

OTOH I really enjoyed A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles thoroughly.

 

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