Outside of a Dog, a Book is Man's Best Friend (The Book Thread)

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Japanfan

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I've read both the Divergent trilogy and the Hunger Games, and I can honestly tell you that the Hunger Games were way better.
Loved loved loved The Hunger Games trilogy - huge (y)

The ending was particularly beautiful. It made me cry (which doesn't happen often due to reading a book), and I wanted to read it over and over and over again.
 

Mad for Skating

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Loved loved loved The Hunger Games trilogy - huge (y)

The ending was particularly beautiful. It made me cry (which doesn't happen often due to reading a book), and I wanted to read it over and over and over again.
OMG if you wanna talk Hunger Games, I am your girl! Everything about the series is A+! It's one of the few books where the romance didn't make me roll my eyes. And I admit I got pretty choked up by the end of it too :D

If you're a fan of the characters, I highly recommend Enna Burning by Shannon Hale, the characters/adventure/romance theme is similar.
 

oleada

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Isn't Divergent what Harry Potter would be if people were sorted into houses for life?

I read the first book, which was okay but didn't inspire in me any great desire to find out what happens next.
I thought that's exactly how I felt about Divergent but now I can't remember if I read book two and then gave up; or if maybe that was the Delirium series by Lauren Oliver because I read those two around the same time and I can barely remember which is which.

Since we're on YA, I've actually been on a YA kick:

Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli - This was the book that the movie Love, Simon was based on. It was very cute. I liked the book better than the movie but what else is new? Simon comes off as really self-centered some times; but not in a bad way, just in a very 16 year old kid kind of way. Apparently, there's another book featuring the same characters, which is tempting, except it's focused on Leah, who is easily my least favorite character in this book. It fits the "Book with an LGBTQ+ main character" prompt for the Popsugar challenge but I already had one for that so I may have to shuffle things around :lol:

American Panda by Gloria Chao - This, on the other hand, was pretty meh. The writing and storytelling seemed pretty disjointed. The characters seem like cartoons, but I'm not Taiwanese so...what do I know? At least it was fast and it fulfilled the "Book with an animal in the title" prompt.

Now I'm reading I'll Give You the Sun By Jandy Nelson. I'm not sure how I feel about it yet. I absolutely loved her last book, The Sky is Everywhere, and I think the very colorful, magical realism style of writing worked well there; I'm not sure if it's too much here. I'll have to keep reading and see. I'm only in chapter 2.

On another note, I really wish the New York Public library had the same app for all their e-books. Or at least, that you got the option to pick. I much prefer using the Kindle downloads vs the Cloud Library which seems really laggy. Has anyone had similar issues?
 

mpal2

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I'm reading The Last Librarian by Brandt Legg. There is finally world peace after a horrific plague and everything is digital. The libraries are being closed down. The last one just got notification that the end is near and the books will be burned. One if the patrons tells the librarian that the digital books are being changed and they have to preserve the originals to prove it and prevent the loss of knowledge before the library is closed.

He listed The Hunger Games as an example. The digital version is now a cookbook. Mockingjay is a bird watching guide. :lol:


I'm not too far in yet but interested enough to keep reading. I have to laugh because I'm reading a book about saving books on my Kindle reader. :encore:
 

Erin

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Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli - This was the book that the movie Love, Simon was based on. It was very cute. I liked the book better than the movie but what else is new? Simon comes off as really self-centered some times; but not in a bad way, just in a very 16 year old kid kind of way. Apparently, there's another book featuring the same characters, which is tempting, except it's focused on Leah, who is easily my least favorite character in this book. It fits the "Book with an LGBTQ+ main character" prompt for the Popsugar challenge but I already had one for that so I may have to shuffle things around :lol:
I read this a few weeks ago and I think I forgot to mention it here. I haven’t seen the movie but thought the book was well done. I recall there being some criticism in the movie thread about not being able to understand why it would be hard for him to come out to his friends and family, given the type of people they are, but I think it’s incredibly obvious in the book and would be surprised if it wasn’t in the movie too.

I agree that Leah was not my favorite character, but I have her book on hold at the library and will give it a shot so I can let you know if it is any good.
 

antmanb

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My long wait in Munich airport and general travel meant I needed entertaining to turned to Jack Reacher for help. I've been reading the Reacher books in order for ages using them as holiday reads so i'm finally up to The Affair (book 15 or 16 I can't remember).

It did entertain me no end, however, I was pretty sure that in all the previous books the sex scenes are all left hanging at the start and cut to the rumpled bed scene in the next chapter, but this one had a very awkward and embarrassing attempt at describing the whole thing. Dear Lee Child - never EVER include descriptions like that ever again it was cringeworthy.
 

Winnipeg

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HAs anyone read Comey's new book?

The joint effort by Clinton and Patterson?

Either any good?
 

Susan1

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I'm only at 195 out of 306.
At least I just picked up my Women's Murder Club - #17 - that has been reserved for awhile. I even passed it up when it was on the 7 day shelf. It's easier to wait till I don't have to worry about reading it right away. (Even though I will!)

If I know something new is coming out from my favorite authors, I reserve it as soon as it is on the library site. The one with Patterson and Clinton said 100 "ordered" when I reserved it. p.s. - that's for the whole Montgomery County library system - 19 libraries, except two are closed for remodeling right now.

p.s. 2 - that reminded me to check it off my list and it said "reserved 4/30/18 - 33rd person". I only make notes like that on new books, because it's interesting to see how long it takes. ~6 weeks. I would bet that people who jump right on the reserve list for brand new popular books read them pretty quickly, so they aren't keeping them for the whole three weeks. If there are a lot of holds, they can't be renewed either.
 
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rfisher

Let the skating begin
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I have the Clinton/Patterson book. If you know Bill Clinton, it's easy to pick out his parts. :lol: It starts out sort of slow (and he gets in some good points about being impeached), but the action picks up. I can guarantee any Trump supporter will NOT be laughing and will not be pleased. I won't say any more since a lot of you are waiting for library copies.
 

snoopy

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I just finished I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter. This might have been a title I picked up here, not sure. It is a coming of age book from the POV of a daughter of undocumented immigrants. I don’t know what I was expecting but catcher in the rye wasn’t it. It definitely has that existentialist vibe. Despite that, it was an interesting book driven by the writing. It was a plus that the character evolved by the end of the book (she wasn’t very likable in the beginning). There is nothing in the plot that suggests read me but I thought this was a really good read anyway.
 

oleada

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I just finished I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter. This might have been a title I picked up here, not sure. It is a coming of age book from the POV of a daughter of undocumented immigrants. I don’t know what I was expecting but catcher in the rye wasn’t it. It definitely has that existentialist vibe. Despite that, it was an interesting book driven by the writing. It was a plus that the character evolved by the end of the book (she wasn’t very likable in the beginning). There is nothing in the plot that suggests read me but I thought this was a really good read anyway.
I recommended that one here, so I'm glad you liked it.
 

Kruss

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Just finished Wait For Me! by Deborah Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire. What a fascinating life she led, the people she knew, and the tireless work she did in bringing Chatsworth House back from disuse to a highly successful enterprise. I thoroughly enjoyed learning about her family history as well.

Since watching Downton Abbey, I have become fascinated by that time period (and after) in Britain. I recently read two books written by the current Countess of Canarvon about two past Countesses of Canarvon. The first book is Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey: The Lost Legacy of Highclere Castle , and the second is Lady Catherine and the Real Downton Abbey. Really interesting.
 

Susan1

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I have the Clinton/Patterson book. If you know Bill Clinton, it's easy to pick out his parts. :lol: It starts out sort of slow (and he gets in some good points about being impeached), but the action picks up. I can guarantee any Trump supporter will NOT be laughing and will not be pleased. I won't say any more since a lot of you are waiting for library copies.
Finished reading it last night. I started out picturing Bill as the President at the beginning, then he turned into the President from Designated Survivor. The last chapter was all Hillary. :)
 

missing

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I realized that at least half of the books my monthly book club has been selecting are historical novels and I'd love some suggestions to change things up (the next meeting is July 2).

If anyone here has some ideas, please share them with me.
 

PrincessLeppard

Holding Alex Johnson's Pineapple
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Jennifer Government by Max Barry. A satire about capitalism run amok. It's one of the few books most of my high school students will read all the way through.
 

clairecloutier

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Just finished Champlain's Dream by David Hackett Fischer. It's a biography of Samuel de Champlain that chronicles his (extensive) role in the founding of the New France settlements of Quebec and Acadia in the early 1600s. This biography is 500+ pages (i.e., the main text) and I pretty much enjoyed every minute of it. Fischer is an excellent writer; he really brings the long-ago era alive and draws a moving portrait of Champlain, who emerges as a principled and intelligent leader with genuinely good intentions toward both the French and Native Americans of the New World. My only criticism would be that Fischer definitely has a strong viewpoint on Champlain and at times overemphasizes it (for example, taking every possible opportunity to tell us yet again of Champlain's diplomatic skill in working with Native American leaders). Also, Fischer does use the term "American Indian" in many cases, as opposed to "Native American," but I am certain this must simply reflect a difference in American vs. Canadian usage, as he clearly means no disrespect to the groups involved. Altogether it's an excellent book, and, I would think, essential reading for anyone interested in New France and the early history of Quebec and Nova Scotia. (The book is more about Quebec, but there is also quite a bit of information about Acadia/Nova Scotia.)
 

whiteskates

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Just finished Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin by Timothy Snyder. Overwhelming book .... Its main subject is the multiple disasters that befell Eastern Europe/Russia from 1930-1953: The horrific state-sponsored famine of Ukraine in the early 1930s; Stalin's Great Terror/purges of the late 1930s; the German invasion in 1941; the Einsatzgruppen mass murders of Jews in 1941-42; the Holocaust in 1942-45; the unofficial civil war in Belarus between Soviet partisans/German collaborators in the mid-1940s; the mass deportation of ethnic Germans in 1945-46; and finally, Stalin's anti-Semitic campaign of the late 1940s/early 50s.

The major brunt of all these cataclysmic events fell on the borderlands of Eastern Europe: Ukraine, Belarus, Poland, the Baltic states. Snyder says that during the 1930-1953 time period, some 14 million people were killed in this region.

The book is extremely depressing and therefore I can't really recommend it per se. (Kept wondering: Why am I putting myself through this?) But, without a doubt, the information in it is important, vital, indispensable.
I was wondering why I put myself through reading the Gulag Archipelago (by Alexandr Solzhenitsyn) some 20 years ago but I did. I kept crying and crying and still couldn't stop reading.
 

oleada

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I read this a few weeks ago and I think I forgot to mention it here. I haven’t seen the movie but thought the book was well done. I recall there being some criticism in the movie thread about not being able to understand why it would be hard for him to come out to his friends and family, given the type of people they are, but I think it’s incredibly obvious in the book and would be surprised if it wasn’t in the movie too.

I agree that Leah was not my favorite character, but I have her book on hold at the library and will give it a shot so I can let you know if it is any good.
Okay, so I read Leah on the Offbeat and wow was it not good. Major letdown from the first book. Leah is super annoying; and the relationship is completely unbelievable and both people in it (can't say who, due to spoilers) come across as super selfish. The plot gets resolved, somehow, but we don't see it. The characters are barely recognizable from the first book. I can't recommend it. A Goodreads review said it was fanfic of her own book and I can't disagree.
 

Erin

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I’m almost done with the bakers secret, about a German occupied village in France near d day. I usually avoid wwii books because there are so many and they can be terribly sad, but I enjoyed this. I liked the characters. there is some violence but overall kind of a feel good story.
I just read this one and thought it was very good although felt it was still pretty sad. I read most of it the same day as I went to the Canadian Museum of Human Rights, which has a large section devoted to the Holocaust, so maybe it was just a little too much on the theme for one day.
Okay, so I read Leah on the Offbeat and wow was it not good. Major letdown from the first book. Leah is super annoying; and the relationship is completely unbelievable and both people in it (can't say who, due to spoilers) come across as super selfish. The plot gets resolved, somehow, but we don't see it. The characters are barely recognizable from the first book. I can't recommend it. A Goodreads review said it was fanfic of her own book and I can't disagree.
Thanks for sharing - I still have it on hold but I don’t think I will bother with it. I might try her other book that I also have on hold but will be prepared to bail early if it sucks.

So after visiting reading Prairie Fires and visiting two of the Laura Ingalls Wilder sites, I decided to reread Donald Zochart’s biography of her, Laura. One thing I like about this one is that it is much more detailed on Wilder’s early years compared to Prairie Fires, which kind of skims over them. It’s my favorite part of her story, probably because it most corresponds with her books, so I appreciate the time he spends on it.

BTW, a brief sidebar but for any fans of Wilder’s who haven’t been to any of her homesites, the Mansfield, Missouri site is a must-see. There are so many interesting objects mentioned in the books on display and the main farmhouse itself is also really neat (a testiment to Almanzo’s creativity). I went to the Independence, Kansas site as well on this trip and had previously been to Pepin, Wisconsin and they have done what they can with what they have but Mansfield is something special for fans.
 

snoopy

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Just finished Something in the Water. It’s a Reese Witherspoon book club pick, who knew there was such a thing? It is in the mold of gone girl and girl on a train - British woman sorta maybe a tad deranged. I enjoyed it just as much as the others.
 
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quartz

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Reese Witherspoon has had a bookclub since 2016 - her picks are very popular. I wish there were stickers on her picks like Oprah used to have, because I can’t ever remember them all and keep having to look them up for customers who want to know “which books are Reese’s?”
 

Jenny

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Just finished Something in the Water. It’s a Reese Witherspoon book club pick, who knew there was such a thing? It is in the mold of gone girl and girl on a train - British woman sorta maybe a tad deranged. I enjoyed it just as much as the others.
A friend just recommended that one - I think it's the one written by one of the minor actors from Downton Abbey, yes?

I just stayed up way too late to read Araminta Hall's Our Kind of Cruelty in one sitting (haven't done that in many years) and am left with mixed feelings. If anyone has read it, I'd love to hear thoughts!

Also just read two books by Ben Dolnick back to back. Ghost Notebooks (most recent) first, so then followed with his previous book, The Bottom of Everything. Excellent, excellent writer, one of the best I've ever read. Real eye for those little details that speak volumes, engaging, although the plotlines won't be for everyone. Ghost Notebooks reviews range from 5 stars to 1 on Amazon, the latter seemingly disappointed that it's not really a ghost story. He never said it was, so get over it people!

Before that I read Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel. First "adult" (quotations deliberate, because it's mostly about teenagers) novel by a YA writer, so thought I'd mention it as I think many here enjoy YA. Typical dual timeline story based around What Happened That Fateful Summer, including the Deep Dark Family Secret You Can See Coming from Page One. In the end though, a good read, very atmospheric, interesting characters, I'll probably read her next one whenever that happens, good summer read.

Picked up Gone Girl finally, late to that party, but have a stack of others too.

I've decided I'm going to stop reading author bios though, or even looking at their pictures. Something about people who say they have a loving family including three small children writing some of the stuff I've read recently is weird - one almost wants to talk to the spouse, see what they make of all this, you know?
 

PrincessLeppard

Holding Alex Johnson's Pineapple
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I'm trying to get some fun stuff read before my class starts next week. I just finished The Arsonist by Stephanie Oakes. It's YA, and centers around the diary of an East German Anne Frank, for lack of a better description, and two teenagers trying to solve her murder. Lots of interesting sub-plots and the male and female leads DO NOT FALL IN LOVE OMG so refreshing. And there is also an overweight, yet heroic, pug. Highly recommend.
 

snoopy

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A friend just recommended that one - I think it's the one written by one of the minor actors from Downton Abbey, yes?
I didn't even know that but yeah, I think she played the feminist but not entirely sure (she was "Mabel"). I listened on audible. She did the reading and was very good, which makes sense.
 
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