As the Page Turns (the Book Thread)

puglover

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2,286
Ok I'm going to wait patiently for fellow Pendergast fans to read the new book so we can discuss the ending.
I just started it. I bought it as an audio book and the narrator is just terrible. He kind of has a New Orleans accent for Pendergast, as opposed to the one who sounds British, but he spends much of his time overacting and yelling. Now you have me intrigued about the ending.
 

SHARPIE

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I see that Marian Keyes is releasing a sequel to “Rachel’s Holiday” in February next year. Hmm while I am excited to read it, I’m also a bit meh as her last few books have been bloody awful. I gave up on “Grown Ups” about a third through.
 

millyskate

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14,864
Grown ups was awful agree @SHARPIE
A friend recommended Louise Penny and I’ve just started “All the Devils are here”. It’s gripping and I’m totally into it.
My last read was “Gilead” and the writing is masterful, the character insight too… and even the theological insight on point which is very rare indeed. But it was just too slow for me.
Louise Penny is the right balance between well-written and “easy to read”.
 

Susan1

Well-Known Member
Messages
10,227
Has anybody read the Murder by Month mysteries by Jess Lourey. Obviously, there were only 12 so I've been reading her standalones. I just finished Unspeakable Things. No spoilers, but it was creepy and suspenseful. And I needed to know what happened after. I did a search on the book and her to see if anyone else asked "what happened to....". How often do you get the answer to that question, when there isn't going to be, or any reason to have, any kind of sequel? She wrote an epilogue to the book on her FB page!!! She was going to put it in the book, but wanted us to imagine. AARRGGHH. So now I know. If you've ever, or are going to, read it, check out the epilogue after. Not before!
 

PrincessLeppard

Holding Alex Johnson's Pineapple
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27,424
I finished Nightmare Scenario about the mishandling of the cov1d response. Dr. Birx comes off better in the book than she did in real time, probably because she was able to explain her actions to the authors. Some of the others who blundered have admitted their mistakes as well. And while Trump is an easy target, there are plenty of people around him who prevented him from doing the right thing (cutting off Birx and Fauci's access to him, for example...he initially listened to Birx, so say the authors). And of course, even if Trump had done the right thing, there was so much infighting, d!ck-waving, and general incompetence around him that the end result might've only been marginally better.
 

PrincessLeppard

Holding Alex Johnson's Pineapple
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27,424
Me again! I avoided lesson planning by reading The 22 Murders of Madison May by Max Barry. I had no idea what to expect (it deals with parallel universes), and a couple of times, I thought the main character did a couple of incredibly stupid things simply to advance the plot (or her motivation got edited out or never written in, I dunno) but overall, I really enjoyed it, especially the ending. Bad endings make me irrationally angry. (LOOKING AT YOU, Mockingjay)
 
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8,605
I just finished devouring Beautiful Country by Qian Julie Wang. I impulsively preordered it after seeing a recommendation on Twitter and I’m so glad I did. It’s the memoir of an undocumented Chinese immigrant girl in NYC and is such a compelling story.

I should probably stop neglecting my kids now and feed them or something :lol:
 

Prancer

Professional Spuddler
Staff member
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51,812
I've been back from the beach for weeks now, but here we go anyway.

I read The High Tide Club on the beach because I have a long tradition of reading Mary Kay Andrews on the beach. Typical Andrews--Southern-fried mystery and romance with a little comedy thrown in for good measure. Perfect.

Last Tang Standing--I put this one off for a long time because the reviews said it was kind of like Crazy Rich Asians and I think I am the only person ever who didn't like Crazy Rich Asians. I really enjoyed this one, though, although I have to say that this is the second "romance" novel I've read in which the female lead falls for a guy she works with, only the guy is kind of a distant secondary character and it's :confused: when she decides he's the love of her life because he's played such a small part in it. No matter; Andrea Tang is quite funny, with or without a man.

Steel Fear--written by a writing team of two, one of them a former Navy Seal; they've written some nonfiction books before, but this is their first novel. Between the Seal and the porn-flick title, I almost didn't read it, but it was a good beach read, too. A troubled Navy Seal is taken aboard an aircraft carrier under mysterious circumstances; murder and mayhem ensue. The Seal is not well and has blank spots in his memory; is he killing people on board? Or did he do something even worse before he was put to sea? There's some real :rolleyes: moments at the end and you will learn more than you ever wanted to know about the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln (some of which is more interesting than you might think), but I found it more engaging than I expected and I will read the next one in the series.

What Waits for You--the second in a series about a Hollywood detective with an academic background. I read and liked the first one enough to read this one; I like all the philosophical discussions that most reviewers consider bogdown. But if that sounds interesting, be warned that these books are REALLY vividly violent. The first chapter of this one alone is just :scream: I did think that the murders were going to go unsolved in this one (they were solved, sort of, in about two pages at the end), but the murders in this series serve mostly as a catalyst for ruminations on society by the main character.

Save Me from Dangerous Men--the blurbs say that if you like Jack Reacher or Lisbeth Sanders, you will love this book. Hmm, well, not so much for me. The main character is a private detective/bookstore owner/vigilante who runs around meting out justice to abusive men at night, in spite of working all day at her other careers. She is hired to look into what she is told is a case of corporate espionage, which of course turns out to be something completely different and crosses over into her "hobby." I could tell within the first two pages that the author is male because the main character is such a guy's idea of a :kickass: chick and it irritated me throughout. I will not read the next book in this series. Moving on.

The Road Trip--so many rave reviews, such a long waiting list, such perfect timing as it landed on my Nook on the last day of vacation, and a big meh from me. I liked her first book, The Flatshare, but this one just didn't do it for me. I found everyone in the book annoying--and not just the people who are supposed to be annoying. I think I am just too old for this book.

Back from the beach:

Notes on a Silencing--I read Lacy Crawford's Early Decision, a satire that lampoons hothouse parents, and liked it. Well, this is a very different sort of book. Crawford details her sexual assault when she was a 15-year-old student at the elite St. Paul's School and the subsequent coverup on the part of the school. This is one of the most enraging books I have ever read. I can't even articulate how angry I was reading it and I still feel seething burning rage just thinking about it. It's not just what the school did to her; it's that they did the same things to so many others and got away with it for so long--and there's not a lot of evidence that things have changed.

:mad: Moving on.

You Never Forget Your First--I know what you are thinking, but it's a biography of George Washington :p. I don't think I've ever finished a biography of Washington before, as I never found him interesting, but I enjoyed this one, which takes feminist (and IMO accurate) jabs at male biographers of Washington, among other things. It's kind of a biography-lite book, but I learned some new things anyway and I finished it! :cheer2: I even found Washington kind of interesting.

Meditations-- people kept telling me that I should read about Stoicism because of the pan.demic, so I am working my way through Marcus Aurelius. It's interesting and thought-provoking, but slow going. It drove me to read....

The Night Before--"Ferociously smart." The covers says so. I certainly don't. I am pretty sure I started losing IQ points as soon as I opened the cover. A woman with a complicated past goes on a date with a stranger and doesn't come home. Her sister and family go looking for her. There is a whole lot of Psychology 101 psychobabble throughout; the red herrings glow in the dark in their obviousness, and the villain is apparent pretty early on (although his :rolleyes: motive isn't explained until the end). It drove me back to Marcus Aurelius.
 

PrincessLeppard

Holding Alex Johnson's Pineapple
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27,424
I just read the YA (maybe? The protagonist is 19, so I guess?) novel The Project by Courtney Summers. The protagonist is trying to find her sister who sucked into a cult after the family was in a car accident that killed the parents and left the main character fighting for her life.

I liked it because the cult wasn't depicted as completely evil; in fact, they do a lot of awesome stuff and it's easy to see how they bring people in. Fast read and good for an airplane ride or avoiding grading essays. :shuffle:
 

rfisher

Let the skating begin
Messages
68,173
I just started it. I bought it as an audio book and the narrator is just terrible. He kind of has a New Orleans accent for Pendergast, as opposed to the one who sounds British, but he spends much of his time overacting and yelling. Now you have me intrigued about the ending.
So what did you think? I'm pretty sure they lost their mind. Although, there are a lot of theoretical physicists who insist there are parallel universes, they could have just shoved Constance in the ocean to get rid of her. Now, we know they will be a follow up book about her adventures in NY. :rolleyes:
 

puglover

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,286
I could not agree more - they did lose their mind. I know they have done trilogies before like the death of Pendergast's wife, which kept you going and guessing, but this follow up idea seems too far out there. Just weird!
 

Stefanie

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Messages
2,773
Just finished Amor Towles' A Gentleman in Moscow. About an aristocrat who is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol in Moscow beginning with the Bolshevik Revolution. So good. So sad it's over. It was so engaging and one of those books where you get to feel attached to the characters. I also loved the sarcasm, too. I think it would make a good movie or even a small miniseries. Wish I could produce it! Haha.
 
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once_upon

Vaccinated
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19,325
Ok, I need something that's mostly fluff has interesting characters, no OMG that's really powerful and deep, thought provoking stuff that my book club reads. Something I could finish in a couple of days or even a week.

If it is a series (like Eve Dallas or Sasha McCandress - which I've read most of those), can you tell me the first book in the sequence?

I can't read those thought provoking things like Pat Conroy's Beach Music (it was 700 plus pages and very graphic descriptions of Nazi Concentration camps, Vietnam, spousal and child abuse and suicide, I just can't anymore of that stuff).

I need some nice "unicorns and rainbows" stuff.
 

Japanfan

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24,726

@once_upon, you've probably read the Janet Evanovich (sp?) series about Stephanie Plum, since they have been around forever (past book 18 at this point, SFAIK). If not, they are fun.
 

MsZem

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Messages
16,478
Ok, I need something that's mostly fluff has interesting characters, no OMG that's really powerful and deep, thought provoking stuff that my book club reads. Something I could finish in a couple of days or even a week.

If it is a series (like Eve Dallas or Sasha McCandress - which I've read most of those), can you tell me the first book in the sequence?

...

I need some nice "unicorns and rainbows" stuff.
AFAIK the In Death series (Eve Dallas) isn't very fluffy, so I won't send you off to read Bridgerton books or anything similar ;) I assume you've read Nora Roberts and not just her JD Robb books?

Anyway: you could try Deanna Raybourn's Lady Julia books (starting with Silent in the Grave) or Sherry Thomas's Lady Sherlock series (starting with A Study in Scarlet Women). Both are historical mystery/suspense. Another possibility is Laura Griffin, who writes decent though not very memorable romantic suspense. I've read a number of her Tracers books, but not the first one (Untraceable) and she has other series as well.

My absolute favorite romance author of the last few years is KJ Charles - you can check this out to see if any of her stuff might work for you.
 

quartz

scratching at the light
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16,053
Lighter, less complicated reading:
Victoria Holt has been my go-to for 40 years.
I also love Deanna Raybourn‘s Julia Grey books, as Ms Zem suggested, and the Veronica Speedwell series is quite fun too.
One of Alan Bradley‘s Flavia de Luce titles usually comes on vacations with me.
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is a nice stand-alone. The Shell Seekers and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn are a couple of my favourite re-reads when I don’t want to wade into the unknown.
 

Susan1

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Messages
10,227
@once_upon, you've probably read the Janet Evanovich (sp?) series about Stephanie Plum, since they have been around forever (past book 18 at this point, SFAIK). If not, they are fun.

I got book 7 when I was working at a charity book sale at work, recommended by somebody there. 10 was already out. It was so good, I had to go back and start at 1. This was before you could look for them online from all over the country, but the librarian did it for me for the old ones. The first three were actually combined in one book. You have to read them in order because the characters and stories continue. By the time I got caught up, I think I was at book 13. And getting them as they came out. A million copies of 28 are on order by the library. I guess I should reserve one now. I just did. I am #28 (funny, that's the # of the book!). They make me laugh out loud and have to stop and wipe my eyes.
Stephanie Plum
1. One for the Money (1994)
2. Two for the Dough (1996)
3. Three to Get Deadly (1997)
4. Four to Score (1998)
5. High Five (1999)
6. Hot Six (2000)
7. Seven Up (2001)
8. Hard Eight (2002)
9. To the Nines (2003)
10. Ten Big Ones (2004)
11. Eleven on Top (2005)
12. Twelve Sharp (2006)
13. Lean Mean Thirteen (2007)
14. Fearless Fourteen (2008)
15. Finger Lickin' Fifteen (2009)
16. Sizzling Sixteen (2010)
17. Smokin' Seventeen (2011)
18. Explosive Eighteen (2011)
19. Notorious Nineteen (2012)
20. Takedown Twenty (2013)
21. Top Secret Twenty-One (2014)
22. Tricky Twenty-Two (2015)
23. Turbo Twenty-Three (2016)
24. Hardcore Twenty-Four (2017)
25. Look Alive Twenty-Five (2018)
26. Twisted Twenty-Six (2019)
27. Fortune and Glory (2020) (aka Tantalizing Twenty-Seven)
28. Game On (2021) (aka Tempting Twenty-Eight)
I forget why the last two are different types of titles. A new character to spin-off or something.
 

once_upon

Vaccinated
Messages
19,325
AFAIK the In Death series (Eve Dallas) isn't very fluffy, so I won't send you off to read Bridgerton books or anything similar ;) I assume you've read Nora Roberts and not just her JD Robb books?

Anyway: you could try Deanna Raybourn's Lady Julia books (starting with Silent in the Grave) or Sherry Thomas's Lady Sherlock series (starting with A Study in Scarlet Women). Both are historical mystery/suspense. Another possibility is Laura Griffin, who writes decent though not very memorable romantic suspense. I've read a number of her Tracers books, but not the first one (Untraceable) and she has other series as well.

My absolute favorite romance author of the last few years is KJ Charles - you can check this out to see if any of her stuff might work for you.

I guess fluff is not the word I should have used :rofl:

I really meant something that would be read in a short time (JD Robb's Death Series books, I generally read in a 3-4 hour time period).

Thanks for the lisy
 

MacMadame

Staying at home
Messages
43,016
Well, I am going to recommend the Bridgerton series. They are fun and a quick read. You can read one in an evening. And there are a TON of them. Almost all the books are about the same world that she's built so characters crossover and there are various series, not just the Bridgerton ones.
 

cygnus

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,077
Just finished Amor Towles' A Gentleman in Moscow. About an aristocrat who is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol in Moscow beginning with the Bolshevik Revolution. So good. So sad it's over. It was so engaging and one of those books where you get to feel attached to the characters. I also loved the sarcasm, too. I think it would make a good movie or even a small miniseries. Wish I could produce it! Haha.
I love this book too, and read it earlier this year. I tried making the Latvian Stew recipe that is referenced in the book- and it was excellent. https://www.bookclubcookbook.com/ge...Ps5a3FLRlwqgh5ufuZkibB-CkjEy5UvFIXvOalhVUAZEQ
 

Allskate

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Messages
11,036
@Stefanie Last I heard, Kenneth Branagh was planning to produce and star in a mini-series based on "A Gentleman in Moscow." I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I hope I enjoy the mini-series just as much. I don't think Branagh is who would have come to mind when I was reading the book, but I think that's largely because I don't think of him as looking Russian.
 

Susan1

Well-Known Member
Messages
10,227
I got book 7 when I was working at a charity book sale at work, recommended by somebody there. 10 was already out. It was so good, I had to go back and start at 1. This was before you could look for them online from all over the country, but the librarian did it for me for the old ones. The first three were actually combined in one book. You have to read them in order because the characters and stories continue. By the time I got caught up, I think I was at book 13. And getting them as they came out. A million copies of 28 are on order by the library. I guess I should reserve one now. I just did. I am #28 (funny, that's the # of the book!). They make me laugh out loud and have to stop and wipe my eyes.
Stephanie Plum
I must have read the screen wrong. I thought it said 27 people ahead of me. Now it says I am 73 of 73 on hold. It must have said 72 ahead of me. Oops.
 

genevieve

drinky typo pbp, closet hugger (she/her)
Staff member
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38,111
I've been reading a lot (for me, anyway) this summer:

Gold Diggers was okay. I liked the premise but the story didn't quite come together, and the main characters were not particularly likeable or unlikeable in an interesting way.

Afterparties is a collection of short stories centering on Cambodian-American life in a city in California, the debut of Anthony Veasna So, who unfortunately died before publication. The stories are vivid, bittersweet, and frequently hilarious. I believe there will be one more book published from the manuscript he was working on when he died. A huge loss of what could have been.

Because I read Klara and the Sun earlier and had never read any other Kazuo Ishiguro, I read The Remains of the Day. I thought it was well-written but it didn't have the impact on my that it has for many others (maybe due to expectations).

The Other Black Girl, by Zakiya Dalila Harris, was an entertaining read - seems like quick chick lit and turns into something else. A couple of quirks in a generally good story. 1) All the characters in this book aggressively use nicknames for everyone else. Finally someone says something about it 400 pages into the book, but then that character's BFF uses the same nickname in the next scene. 2) the story takes place in a publishing company, and randomly in the middle of the book there were about 10 pages with multiple copy edit errors. Commentary on the current state of publishing? Or oversight? who can know. I wish this book had gone through one more draft to tighten up a few things.

I'm super late to the Octavia Butler fan club, but I'm here for it. Finally read Kindred, and just wow. Worth aaallllll the hype. I can see such a strong influence on NK Jemisin's writing in this book. The contemporary parts of the book take place in 1976 (published 1979), and it reads like it was written today.

I thought Libertie would be a nice segueway after Kindred, and I'm not sure what to think of it. The historic context of life during reconstruction, and Haiti were interesting, but the main character is so passive I never had any idea why she did anything. The book seemed to be things that happened around her.

I wasn't sure I would get into The Startup Wife, but it was really great - Tahmima Anam tells a good story about being a woman in the tech world but also weaves in lots of just gorgeous little character moments with minor characters. Protagonist Asha Ray is hilarious and relatable, and makes choices that aren't just formulaic.

Currently reading Velvet Was the Night by Silvia Moreno-Garcia and liking it but it's a little harder to get into than her last one. Am a little relieved that this one is more noir and less full-blown horror.
 

clairecloutier

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Messages
12,020
Anyone have recommendations for good adventure/fantasy/detective/sci-fi/mythical/historical series or books for tweens?? One of my 12-year-olds loves listening to audiobooks. But she goes through them fast, and I need some more options for her. Nothing too adult or too serious.

Here are some series that she's already read/listened to (just to avoid repeat suggestions): The Indian in the Cupboard, The Mysterious Benedict Society, Lemony Snicket, The Borrowers (well, part of it), Trixie Belden, A Wrinkle in Time, Anne of Green Gables, the Little House books, the Blossom Culp books by Richard Peck
 

her grace

standing with Mariah
Messages
4,346
Anyone have recommendations for good adventure/fantasy/detective/sci-fi/mythical/historical series or books for tweens?? One of my 12-year-olds loves listening to audiobooks. But she goes through them fast, and I need some more options for her. Nothing too adult or too serious.

The How to Train Your Dragon series is fun and has a good narrator on audio. They're short, but there's a lot of them.

ETA: And the Penderwicks books by Jeanne Birdsall are a lively series featuring four sisters that she might enjoy.
 
Messages
43
Anyone have recommendations for good adventure/fantasy/detective/sci-fi/mythical/historical series or books for tweens?? One of my 12-year-olds loves listening to audiobooks. But she goes through them fast, and I need some more options for her. Nothing too adult or too serious.

Here are some series that she's already read/listened to (just to avoid repeat suggestions): The Indian in the Cupboard, The Mysterious Benedict Society, Lemony Snicket, The Borrowers (well, part of it), Trixie Belden, A Wrinkle in Time, Anne of Green Gables, the Little House books, the Blossom Culp books by Richard Peck
Has she read the Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan? There are several books in the series with some spin-offs. I read the first one for a book club a few years ago and found it to be appropriate for the tween age group.
 

hanca

Values her privacy
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11,733
Anyone have recommendations for good adventure/fantasy/detective/sci-fi/mythical/historical series or books for tweens?? One of my 12-year-olds loves listening to audiobooks. But she goes through them fast, and I need some more options for her. Nothing too adult or too serious.
Robert Muchamore wrote series of books called Cherub. The first one is the Recruit. I heard that’s quite good (at least the kids here read it).
 

Tesla

Whippet Good
Messages
2,756
Anyone have recommendations for good adventure/fantasy/detective/sci-fi/mythical/historical series or books for tweens?? One of my 12-year-olds loves listening to audiobooks. But she goes through them fast, and I need some more options for her. Nothing too adult or too serious.
Nancy Drew? I loved those books as a kid, and there are new versions out.
 

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