RebaRelishesReading in 2019 - 4th quarter

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RebaRelishesReading in 2019 - 4th quarter

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Editado: Nov 25, 2019, 6:45pm

Grandpuppies Molly (black lab mix) and Mia (Malti-poo).

Sep 30, 2019, 10:04am

Whew, I got this thread titled correctly for a change :)

I'm a Californian by birth and by residence although I've lived in Arizona, Connecticut, the Netherlands, England and Ireland at various times in my life. I've been a member of Library Thing for 12 years and this is my 8th year in 75er's. Checking the threads is still a joy as is meeting friends from the thread in real life. Book people are generally really good people I have found :)

I spend my summers at the Chautauqua Institution in western New York where more and more I concentrate on enjoying the music presented by professionals and graduate students participating in the summer program. There is also a visit by an author once a week which is often very good.

I read mostly fiction with a large helping of biography thrown in. A couple of years ago I finished a personal challenge to read all of the Pulitzer Prize winning fiction and earlier this year I finished another to read the entire Harry Potter series (with encouragement from Chelle, thank you Chelle). I've also challenged myself to read the Pulitzer wining biographies but I don't seem to be making much progress on that score.

Editado: Dic 29, 2019, 8:14pm

What I've read this year:

1. Georgia by Dawn Tripp****1/2
2. The Library Book by Susan Orlean****
3. Cinnamon Gardens by Shyam Selvadurai****
4. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling****
5. Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng (audio)****
6. Snobs by Julian Fellowes ***1/2
7. Women in Sunlight by Frances Mayes**** (audio)
8. The Chosen by Chaim Potok****

9. If I Understood You, Would I Have This Look on My Face? by Alan Alda***1/2 (audio)
10. Night in Bombay by Louis Bromfield****
11. The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley***
12. Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue by John McWhorter****(audio)
13. The House at Tyneford by Natasha Solomons*** (audio)
14. The Identicals by Elin Hilderbrand** (audio)
15. The Clockmaker's Daughter by Kate Morton****1/2 (audio)
16. Murder in an Irish Village by Carlene O'Connor** (audio)
17. A Little History of Philosophy by Nigel Warburton**** (audio)
18. The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag by Alan Bradley** (audio)
19. Feeding the Dragon by Sharon Washington*****(audio)

20. Us Against You by Fredrik Backman****1/2 (audio)
21. A Mind of Her Own by Paula McLain**** (audio)
22. That Month in Tuscany by Inglath Cooper**** (audio)
23. The Custom of the Country by Edith Wharton****
24. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J. K. Rowling****1/2
25. Elephant Company by Vicki Constantine Croke*****(audio)
26. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J. K. Rowling****1/2
27. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling*****
28. Asymmetry by Lisa Halliday**

29. The Alice Network by Kate Quinn **** (audio)
30. Moloka'i by Alan Brennert ****1/2
31. The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai ***1/2
32. A Place Called Freedom by Ken Follett ***1/2
33. Milkman: A Novel by Anna Burns *

34. Book Towns: Forty-five Paradises of the Printed Word****
35. Bibliophile: An Illustrated Miscellany by Jane Mount****1/2
36. Tin Man by Sarah Winman ****1/2
37. In the Distance by Hernan Diaz ****1/2
38. The Pioneers by David McCullough ****1/2
39. A Land Remembered by Patrick D. Smith ****(audio)
40. The Mango Bride by Marvin Soliven ****
41. A Taste for Vengeance by Martin Walker **** (audio)
42. Honolulu by Alan Brennert *****

43. White Banners by Lloyd C. Douglas ****
44. Doc by Mary Doria Russell *****
45. Invitation to Live by Lloyd C. Douglas ***1/2
46. The Endless Beach by Jenny Colgan****
47. Epitaph by Mary Doria Russell*****
48. Kindred by Octavia E. Butler*****

49. Burial Rites by Hannah Kent ****
50. In the Shadow of Death: A Chautauqua Murder Mystery by Deb Pines ***1/2
51. Art as a Way: A Return to the Spiritual Roots by Frederick Franck ***
52. Selected Prose of Robert Frost edited by Hyde Cox and Edward Connery Lathem ***
53. The Ensemble by Aja Gabel ***1/2
54. Geographic Influences in American History by Albert Perry Brigham***
55. A World Lost by Wendell Berry****
56. Christmas on the Island by Jenny Colgan****(audio)

57. Brookland by Emily Barton****
58. Andrew's Brain by E. L. Doctorow***1/2
59. Mother Tongue by Demetria Martinez ****
60. If Today Be Sweet by Thrity Umrigar *****
61. The Fourth Man by Howard Moody ***1/2
62. Among English Hedgerows by Clifton Johnson****
64. The Storyteller's Secret by Sejal Badani***** (audio)
65. A Place in the Sun by Lois and Louis Darling ***

66. The Middle Heart by Bette Bao Lord****
67. A Women's Life by Susan Cheever****
68. Passionate Nomad: The Life of Freya Stark by Jane Fletcher Geniesse****
69. About Grace by Anthony Doerr***
70. The Boys in the Bunkhouse: Servitude and Salvation in the Heartland by Dan Barry****1/2
71. Sing for Your Life: A Story of Race, Music and Family by Daniel Bergner*****
72. One Hundred Names for Love by Diane Ackerman****
73. Dear Mrs Bird by A J Pearce****1/2
74. Last Train to Istanbul by Ayse Kulin ****
75. A Dashing Duke for Emily by Hanna Hamilton **

76. Sanditon by Jane Austen****
77. Educated by Tara Westover****1/2
78. The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead ****1/2
79. The Dutch House by Ann Patchett****1/2
80. A Better Man by Louise Penny ****
81. The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives **** edited by Viet Thanh Nguyen
82. Swimmer Among the Stars by Kanishk Tharoor **
83. Wetware by Craig Nova**
84. Daily Life in Holland in the Year 1566 by Rien Poortfliet*****

85. The Rains Came by Louis Bromfield****1/2
86. The Colors of All the Cattle by Alexander McCall Smith****(audio)
87. The Women of Copper Country by Mary Doria Russell*****
88. The Body in the Castle Wall by Martin Walker*** (audio)
89. Deep Down Dark by Hector Tobar*****(audio)
90. 1947 Where Now Begins by Elisabeth Asbrink***
91. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel**** (audio)
92. Shakespeare: The World as Stage by Bill Bryson*** (audio)

93. Dead Wake by Erik Larson***(audio)
94. The Farm by Louis Bromfield**
95. With a Daughter's Eye:A Memoir of Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson by
Mary Catherine Bateson***
96. Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson ****1/2
97. Places of Light by Gernot Candolini and Jennifer Brandon****
98. Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings by Joy Harjo***
99. It's An Old California Custom by Lee Shippey***
100. Why Old Places Matter by Thompson M. Mayes****
101. Sullivan's Island by Dorothea Benton Frank ***1/2

Sep 30, 2019, 10:06am

Now the thread is open for visitors. I hope I get lots of them!!

Sep 30, 2019, 10:08am

Well here I am first up and hopefully the first of many.
Happy new thread, Reba.

Sep 30, 2019, 10:12am

Wow, a visitor! Welcome Paul, nice to see you :)

Sep 30, 2019, 10:15am

Only two minutes after you declared your thread open, Reba - I couldn't have been much faster!

Sep 30, 2019, 11:07am

I've been in LibraryThing since 2008 and it is only recently that I have started to try to find out where people are and do the Meetup Thing. I have found that I enjoy it immensely and like you said, Book people are generally good people and so much fun. I still smile when I think of that lunch at your house with Bonnie and Imri. One of these days, I will get my own thread and see what happens as far as meetups go. In the meantime, I enjoy visiting others threads.

I really enjoyed the posts from England and think this hike was quite an accomplishment. I hope that you and your friend will do one like it next year. Your hike prompted me to do some research, and I found that I am also interested in doing something like this. The idea of trails as part of the National Trust amazes me and I have to congratulate the English for taking to it so whole heartedly. They have the most miles of National Trails of any of the nations in Europe! Other countries have a system of National hiking trails, but none as many miles as the UK. France has more miles of canals that are open to commercial tourist barges, but not hiking trails.

Thanks for putting me onto the idea of these walking trails.

Sep 30, 2019, 11:39am

Happy new thread, Reba!

Sep 30, 2019, 11:52am

>8 benitastrnad: A friend from here tells me there is something called the Inn to Inn walk in Vermont. You might look into that. If you're interested in U.K. walks, the company we used was Contours. They did a great job setting it up. One absolutely critical part to me was that they arranged to have our suitcase moved from accommodation to accommodation so we only had to have day packs on our backs (and even those felt rather heavy sometimes). I understand that the Inn to Inn program does the same thing.

All of that said -- it was a great experience. I challenged myself and was able to do it. I don't, however, plan to do it least for a while and probably in Vermont if so. :)

Meet-ups, however, I hope to do many more times!

>9 susanj67: Hi Susan. Thanks for visiting early :)

Sep 30, 2019, 3:01pm

Happy new thread Reba. Sad to hear you won't be doing another English walking tour. I was hoping to sell you on the delights of the Leeds - Liverpool. Vermont sounds lovely though.

Sep 30, 2019, 8:00pm

Happy New Thread, Reba! You said you are home--is that in Chataqua or San Diego? If the former, as I suspect, when are you heading this way?

Oct 1, 2019, 1:55am

Happy new thread, Reba. I hope you saw my post on your last thread. If you didn't I said it must be great to finally be home but then I read that you are off again on Saturday. I hope the leaves change for you. They are starting to change here a bit.

Editado: Oct 1, 2019, 5:15pm

>11 charl08: Hi Char! I might consider a 4 or 5 day, 5 or 6 miles per day version but I really think I'm done. It was great, I'm glad I did it, but I don't need to do it again.

>12 ronincats: You're right Roni-- home to New York. We're leaving for San Diego on Nov. 5 but going to Indiana to visit cousins, then Oregon to see baby grandson, then San Francisco to mind the fur-grandkids while son and lady travel and then home Thanksgiving weekend.

>13 Familyhistorian: Thanks, Meg. We're getting some tiny touches of color here in western NY but hoping things are further along to the north and east of us.

Oct 1, 2019, 7:51am

Happy new thread!

Congrats on reaching the 75 book mark :)

Oct 1, 2019, 11:06am

Happy new thread!

Oct 1, 2019, 3:21pm

Happy new thread, Reba!

>14 RebaRelishesReading: I presume you mean 5 or 6 miles a day?
Sounds like you have a busy scedule until returning to San Diego.

Oct 1, 2019, 3:53pm

Happy new one - love the topper picture.

Oct 1, 2019, 5:22pm

Sanditon by Jane Austen****

This volume contains three relatively unknown works by Jane Austen. Lady Susan was written by Austen before she became well know. It is believed that The Watsons was begun during "an unhappy period" in Bath and abandoned after her father's death. Sanditon was the last work she started and never finished because of her death. Even though none of them are complete or as polished as her main works, they are still a delight to read.

Oct 1, 2019, 5:25pm

>15 figsfromthistle: Thank you Figsfromthistle :)

>16 drneutron: Thanks Jim

>17 FAMeulstee: Hi Anita -- LOL, yes, I meant 5 or 6 miles

>18 charl08: Thanks Char :)

Oct 1, 2019, 9:26pm

Happy new thread, Reba. Congratulations on passing 75.

Oct 2, 2019, 7:55am

>21 BLBera: Thank you Beth :)

Oct 2, 2019, 7:56am

I ran across this on Facebook this morning. Just had to share it:

Oct 2, 2019, 8:49am

Happy new thread, Reba, and congratulations on hitting the 75 books mark!

Oct 2, 2019, 12:00pm

>24 kidzdoc: Thank you Darryl :)

Editado: Oct 2, 2019, 12:08pm

>23 RebaRelishesReading:
I loved this. It describes me so well. I get so lost in bookstores and I don't want to ever come up for air. I think that in the last two days I have added about 50 new titles to my TBR list in LT. I will never get them all read.

Oct 2, 2019, 7:20pm

>23 RebaRelishesReading: I felt the same way when looking at it. I suspect most of us here would feel that way too. I've always thought myself a little odd for feeling so happy at the thought of an anticipated book waiting for me. I glad I'm not alone.

Reba, you've been doing some great reading. Congratulations on hitting 75!

Oct 3, 2019, 2:38pm

>26 benitastrnad: Hi Benita, glad you liked it. Other than that I usually only have one "real" book and one audio book going at a time it describes me too.

>27 Oregonreader: Hi Jan. Thank you! Good to see you.

Oct 3, 2019, 2:47pm

Educated by Tara Westover ****1/2

What a riveting book! Tara was raised by a mentally-ill, religious fanatic father and a totally subservient mother who didn't allow her to go to school or visit doctors. Her "home schooling" revolved around a very few books found acceptable by her paranoid father and a literal interpretation of the Bible. Nevertheless, she persevered. I'm so glad I finally got to it and that I read it when I had time to devote to it. Started it yesterday afternoon and finished it this morning.

Oct 3, 2019, 5:53pm

>29 RebaRelishesReading: ohhhhh that was a good one Reba.

Oct 4, 2019, 8:39am

>30 brenzi: Indeed, Bonnie :)

Oct 4, 2019, 12:09pm

Here is some news to brighten your day! It came in my Friday newsletter from Publisher's Weekly.

New tariffs imposed by the Trump administration on certain goods imported from the European Union will include books. According to Section 4 of a new directive from the U.S. Trade Representative, printed books, brochures, leaflets, and lithographs produced in Germany and the U.K. will be subjected to a 25% tariff beginning October 18.

The new tariffs, which cover up to $7.5 billion of products imported from the E.U., were in response to the E.U. providing subsidies to Airbus. The World Trade Organization signed off on the right of the Trump administration to impose the tariffs.

The first reaction to the tariffs came from Stephen Lotinga, chief executive of the U.K.’s Publishers Association, who said: "We are deeply concerned about this development and raised it immediately with the Department for International Trade and the Intellectual Property Office. It is completely unacceptable that book exports are collateral damage in an unconnected trade matter. We will continue to argue in the strongest possible terms against tariffs that could be damaging to the trade and are in nobody's interest."

The new E.U. tariffs come as the U.S. publishing industry continues to grapple with the ramifications of earlier tariffs placed on books and related products imported from China. Although the Trump administration opted not impose 25% tariffs on virtually all books made in China, 10% tariffs were levied September 1 on trade, professional, and educational books. Other categories of books, including religious books, bibles, and children’s picture books either received a delay in the imposition of tariffs or were granted an exception.

Oct 4, 2019, 1:00pm

>32 benitastrnad: There are so many things raging through my mind right now that I'll just leave it at ^%()*^%^#$%!!!

Oct 4, 2019, 2:11pm

Happy new thread, Reba!

Oct 4, 2019, 6:51pm

>32 benitastrnad: Is there no end to the outrageous acts committed by this administration. Every day another new outrage. We can't be rid of them soon enough.

Oct 6, 2019, 3:21pm

>34 katiekrug: Thank you Katie -- welcome home! Hope you're making progress with the unpacking :)

>35 brenzi: Thee will be no end until the administration ends -- and even afterward we will probably keep discovering new ones for a long time.

Oct 6, 2019, 3:23pm

The Nickel Boys by Colson Whitehead****1/2

Speaking of outrages! Here is a fine novel based on outrages from Florida's racist past (I'm assuming things are better now but don't really know). It was sickening to read but well done and providing important information. A highly recommended book.

Oct 8, 2019, 1:10pm

I wholeheartedly agree with the recommendation!

Oct 8, 2019, 5:59pm

>38 drneutron: Thank you Jim :)

Oct 9, 2019, 5:54pm

>23 RebaRelishesReading: I love it!

>33 RebaRelishesReading: Ditto, Reba.

>37 RebaRelishesReading: I must get to this one soon!

Oct 10, 2019, 2:22pm

The Dutch House by Ann Patchett****1/2

I loved this book! Perhaps because I'm on vacation, or perhaps for some other reason, but I liked it better than Commonwealth. My only criticism would be that I didn't really like the final, wrap-up, chapter. It seemed somewhat like an after thought, or hurried "I guess I have to say what happened to everyone" -- whatever, that chapter didn't work for me but the rest of the book was wonderful imo.

Oct 10, 2019, 3:23pm

We've been leaf-peeping in New England this week. The weather has been wonderful (except one rainy day) and the leaves are at their peak so it's been a big success. Today we crossed over into Quebec in part to visit Knowlton, where Louise Penny lives and which is reportedly the inspiration for Three Pines. It's a nice little town although not much like my image of Three Pines and it doesn't even have a bookstore!! It is trying to take advantage of their most famous resident and has a literary festival coming up Oct. 12 - 20 at which Ms. Penny is featured along with several other authors (Shelagh Rogers, Sheree Fitch, Kim Thuy, Barry Estabrook, An-Marie Macdonald, Guy Vanderhaege and K.D. Miller). I would be so tempted to come back except it's an 8 1/2 hour drive and I've been away a good bit recently. Had I known about it before, though, this trip could well have been pushed off for a week.

Here are some shots of Knowlton.

These signs are in many shop windows in town.

"Downtown" Knowlton.

Ok, there were two more that I wanted to include but one is sideways and won't respond to any tricks I know to change and the other responded by turning upside-down rather than sideways. So I'm going to leave them out (they're in my member gallery if you really, really want to see them).

Now I'm going to go and start reading A Better Man by one of my favorite authors :)

Oct 10, 2019, 4:38pm

>42 RebaRelishesReading: Hmmm not my picture of Three Pines at all Reba but maybe it's the flavor that Penny has captured. At any rate I would've loved to attend that literary festival just to see Guy Vanderhaeghe, Ann Marie McDonald and Louise Penny. Oh my what a lineup. Love so many Canadian authors.

Oct 10, 2019, 7:34pm

>43 brenzi: I'm still a bit tempted I must admit. Kim Thuy's presentation is about Vietnamese food and includes a buffet lunch, which also sounds good.

We went into "The Buzz' which seems to be attached to the bakery next door and where we had some lovely soup, sandwich and pastry. The waitress said Ms. Penny comes in often and usually has a "bowl of hot chocolate" (I did too and it was very good). I started A Better Man and there at the bottom of page one was Myrna having a "mug of hot chocolate" then on page 32 they go to visit the home of a missing woman in Cowansville, which is another small village we passed through very near Knowlton. I'm having a great time looking for details I can recognize now.

Oct 10, 2019, 8:14pm

>32 benitastrnad: This man has to go!! >: (

>37 RebaRelishesReading: Loved The Nickel Boys, too!

Oct 11, 2019, 1:50am

>42 RebaRelishesReading: Knowlton sounds like an interesting place to visit. Too bad you couldn't take in the literary festival. I notice that you listed Shelagh Rogers as an author. She would more likely be an interviewer and a well known personality in her own right as she is a broadcast journalist heavily involved in the literary world. Just saying her name immediately brings her voice to mind.

Editado: Oct 12, 2019, 7:21pm

>45 Berly: Hi Kim -- good to "see" you

>46 Familyhistorian: Hi Meg -- yes, Shelagh Rogers' contribution is to be "in conversation" with Louise Penny for two hours :) I want to be there :(

Oct 11, 2019, 10:40pm

Hi Reba! Some good reading. I have to get to the new Ann Patchett

Oct 12, 2019, 2:51pm

>47 RebaRelishesReading: Shelagh Rogers in conversation with Louise Penny would be good. I've seen Louise Penny twice but Shelagh Rogers would have made it even better!

Oct 12, 2019, 7:22pm

>48 banjo123: Hi Rhonda -- Thanks, I've been enjoying and do recommend the new Ann Patchett

>49 Familyhistorian: I'm really sorry we aren't going to be there, Meg. I'll watch and see if they do it again next year maybe.

Oct 13, 2019, 3:32pm

>41 RebaRelishesReading: Looking forward to reading this one, Reba.

How nice to find a new book festival - hope you get there next year. Every year I want to do Wigtown, I might make it in 2020...

Oct 13, 2019, 5:37pm

>51 charl08: Yes, yes I would love to do Wigtown. We were discussing whether to go to U.K. or Germany/Switzerland/Netherlands next fall...I'll have to check and see when Wigtown is :)

Oct 13, 2019, 5:45pm

A Better Man by Louise Penny****

A young woman is missing and her father is worried but at the same time a huge storm is coming at just the wrong time and widespread flooding is likely. Gamache is about to take over as head of homicide because Jean-Guy is moving to France. This is not only a "who-done-it" but also a book about abuse within families and about family connections in general.

For the first time I really paid attention to Penny's short sentences and she certainly does use a lot of them. I found that many of them just made the dialog sound more natural to me and others seemed to make points hit "home" harder. By and large I decided they don't bother me much (whew! because I would hate to give up Three Pines lol).

This isn't my favorite Louise Penny novel but I still enjoyed it a lot and am looking forward to the next one :)

Oct 14, 2019, 8:27am

Happy Thanksgiving to Canadian friends! We spent hours in traffic in Toronto yesterday helping you celebrate :)

Our leaf-peeping trip was lovely. We had perfect weather (except one rainy day) and the leaves were at their peak. I am glad to be back in our New York home however because we spent too many hours in the car. Three weeks from today we'll head back west and spend even more days in the car...but I'm not going to think about that right now.

Oct 14, 2019, 8:36pm

Hi Reba, thank you for posting all those lovely photos of your walking trip in England. I am so proud of you for hanging in there with sore feet. Your trip to "Three Pines" also sounded like great fun. You should plan a meetup around the book festival next year.

>41 RebaRelishesReading: I recently finished and loved The Dutch House. I even liked the ending!

Oct 14, 2019, 11:52pm

>54 RebaRelishesReading: Good of you to spend time in Toronto to help us celebrate Thanksgiving, Reba. I missed out on the fun because I am south of the border. I had totally blanked Thanksgiving weekend from my mind and was surprised by the crowds in the grocery store just before I left.

Oct 15, 2019, 9:21am

>55 Donna828: Hi Donna. Thank you. I'm rather proud of myself too :) "Three Pines" is a two-day drive from here and I doubt we'll do it again next year (actually we're thinking about going to the U.K. and including a visit to the Wigtown Book Fair in that trip). A meet-up there would be fun though.

>56 Familyhistorian: I knew Canadian Thanksgiving was in October but hadn't focused on what date until we were already in Toronto. When I realized I thought we would be OK since we were traveling on the middle day of a three-day weekend and I expected people to travel to their holiday location on Saturday and back home again on Monday. I'm not sure where all of those people were going on Sunday but it was a mess!

Oct 16, 2019, 10:04am

It's cold and raining and I have a cold (poor me) so I'm planning to spend the day in my soft, warm bathrobe trying to catch up on some of the things that have to be done before we leave for CA and, maybe, doing some reading this afternoon.

Oct 18, 2019, 12:03pm

I spent a lovely day with Sharon Stewart yesterday. We went to Birmingham so I could get my TSZ pre-Check paperwork done. I told her about your latest trip to Canada and that you were getting ready to start heading back to San Diego. I think that Sharon will be staying later in New York next year. This fall was brutal here in Alabama weatherwise and was very hard on her. Yesterday was our first fall day with temperatures in the 60's. We talked about you and your trip to England. Sharon was curious about how you did in the walking.

Oct 18, 2019, 12:40pm

So sorry to hear you aren't feeling well, Reba! Take care of yourself.

Oct 18, 2019, 3:44pm

>59 benitastrnad: Hi Benita! Good to hear from you. I guess Sharon's decision depends on which end of the weather scale she is most comfortable. One reason I like staying here is that the hottest month of the year in So Cal is September and I don't like heat but it's been in the 40's and rainy for the past two days and is topping out about 49 today although it isn't raining today and is even sunny this afternoon. I love "cozy" weather when I can wear sweaters and sit by the fire but I know that isn't everyone's idea of delightful (Hubby thinks it's much too cold this week for example). As to the walking, I did well. The first day was pretty challenging because it was the longest day, the paths were difficult and at the end not well described or marked. Other than that I was tired when we reached our lodging but not exhausted and I was ready to hit the trail the next morning. It was a great trip and I think we're both glad we did it.

>60 ronincats: Thanks Roni. The running nose stage only lasted one day and now I'm hoarse and coughing but I don't feel all that bad besides it was lovely to have a reason to sit by the fire and read on two cold, rainy days :)

Oct 18, 2019, 3:47pm

The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives edited by Viet Thanh Nguyen****

This is a collection of essays by well-known writers who have been refugees at some point in their lives. The essays are very well written and provide some new perspectives on the refugee experience. Well worth a read.

Editado: Oct 20, 2019, 8:52am

Our Chautauqua master bath is going to be redone over the winter and I've been having a hard time making choices about materials. It currently has a creepy whirlpool tub that is getting ever harder to climb over the side of in order to take a shower so it really must happen. Today I finally went to buy the one item I knew for sure I wanted and that is the plank vinyl flooring we have downstairs. In the shop, however, I found some tile I like a lot that was a remnant at a really good price so things suddenly started falling into place. Good thing since we leave here in just over two weeks and everything has to be ordered or purchased by then.

Oct 19, 2019, 2:53pm

>63 RebaRelishesReading:
Funny about the bathroom. I went to play games at a friends house on Thursday night and she just renovated both of her bathrooms. She also found some tile at Loew’s that she loved and it turned out it was discontinued. However, they had enough in the store to do her main bathroom so she got it. She also got a good price!

But then she had to take time to figure out what she wanted for the second bathroom. Both turned out well.

Oct 20, 2019, 8:55am

>64 benitastrnad: It's amazing how much mental energy this tiny bathroom is taking! I'll be glad when it's finished -- and hope I like the result!

Oct 20, 2019, 9:59am

Hi Reba! Our new house has 2.5 baths and all need to be updated at some point, as does the kitchen. I am simultaneously looking forward to it and dreading it :)

Oct 20, 2019, 10:57am

Hi Reba!

A very belated happy new thread and congrats on reaching 75.

>19 RebaRelishesReading: I’m seriously toying with the idea of a Jane Austen read next year – all 6 novel and a sweet little volume that contains Sanditon and 4 other works, deleted chapters, etc.

>23 RebaRelishesReading: Thanks for sharing. It describes me perfectly, too.

>29 RebaRelishesReading: Educated was an amazing book. Harrowing, depressing, and ultimately victorious.

Sorry you’ve been sick and hope that you’re much better now. Have fun with the final planning stages on the bathroom.

Oct 20, 2019, 1:22pm

>66 katiekrug: We redid two of the 2 1/2 baths in our last place in San Diego. We did them one at a time so we always had a functioning shower but it was still a mess. Somehow I didn't find it so difficult to make choices then though. Anyway, good luck with your some-point redo's -- it's a pain but it's worth it.

>67 karenmarie: Thank you Karen. I'm feeling much better and am grateful this cold seems to be moving through pretty quickly. I love Austen and have read all of her books twice (except the ones in the Sanditon volume I just bought). I know you'll enjoy it.

Oct 20, 2019, 7:00pm

I got an incredible bargain this weekend. I went up to Birmingham to get my TSA Precheck paperwork done and on the way home stopped to see what Sur La Table had on their bargain sale racks. Low and behold, there were two 2500 Vitamix blenders marked down from $499 to $399. I did not buy them, but the more I thought about it the more I decided I should purchase one because Who ever sees Vitamix blenders on sale!? I drove back yesterday and purchased one. Then, after a visit to the Yarn Shop, I decided that I should buy the other one for my sister. When I got there the store clerk was nice enough to point out to me that the display model was also marked down and that this last weekend was an extra 30% off. I got the second blender for $270. I am not sure about the math on this purchase but the receipt says that is what was charged to my credit card account - so I’m happy.

I cleaned off part of my counter and set up my blender this afternoon. Now I only have to get my yogurt and make my Smoothie for tomorrow. I drink Smoothies for breakfast most mornings so I will use my purchase all the time.

Oct 20, 2019, 10:34pm

That is excellent! I use my Vitamix regularly too. It's not a wonder machine - it's just a very good blender - but it is a very good blender.

Oct 21, 2019, 10:22am

>69 benitastrnad: Congratulations Benita! It's always fun to get a bargain (and extra fun for your sister -- is it going to be for Christmas?)

Oct 21, 2019, 10:56am

Reba, I hope the cold has packed up and gone. Good news that your bathroom plan is coming together, though. I had to move out when I had mine done, as I have just the one. My chief wish for my next place to live is a second bathroom, or even just a guest loo.

Editado: Oct 21, 2019, 12:56pm

I am about 25 pages from the end of Shanghai Faithful: Betrayal and Forgiveness in a Chinese Christian Family and this has been a great book. I spent a good deal of time reading it over the weekend, and I can't wait to tell you guys about it. It is published by an Academic publisher - Rowman & Littlefield - and shouldn't be a readable book. But it is. If you liked Wild Swans by Jung Chang this book tags along with Shanghai Faithful and Shanghai Faithful gives great insight into China during the 1960's and the Cultural Revolution.

Oct 21, 2019, 6:50pm

Swimmer Among the Stars by Kanishk Tharoor**

I read this short story collection because it counts for my CLSC list but I really didn't enjoy it. Probably partly because I'm not a big short story fan but also because the stories were rather strange and way over my head I'm afraid :(

Oct 21, 2019, 7:01pm

>72 susanj67: Thanks Susan. The cold is fairly well gone. I'm still coughing a little but I'm counting myself as "oner it". How's your headache doing?

>73 benitastrnad: I had to smile when I read your post because an Aussie friend gave me Wild Swans several years ago but I still haven't read it. Perhaps I should dig it out when I get home.

The bathroom project: We went to big box today and ordered the shower pan, the shower door and the vanities. While we were there we also bought the faucets, towel rods, and a new light. After I got home I realized we forgot door/drawer pulls, a grab bar and a TP holder. Dropped Hubby off after that outing (he can only stand so much shopping) and went to the flooring/tile store to order the counter top for the vanity. There are some questions they are going to have to get input on from supplier so I picked the material but didn't get completely finished. Bottom line is we're making a lot of progress but it seems that every time we take a big step forward someone moves the finish line a tiny bit. Nevertheless we WILL have this sorted before we leave!

Movie: We finally went to see Downton Abbey last night. We chose the 6:25 p.m. showing at a local mall which closes at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday so when we arrived things were pretty quiet there. There were 6 of us in the theater (at least we weren't totally on our own like you were, Susan) and when we came out we found the doors locked!! We looked around and found doors with "panic hardware" on them so we were able to get out of the theater but then we found the mall doors leading to where we parked locked. We saw another couple from our theater exiting through doors on the other side of the mall and we were able to get out there but then had to walk completely around the mall to get to our car. You'd think they might want to cancel that Sunday evening showing!

Oct 21, 2019, 8:13pm

>75 RebaRelishesReading: Good Lord Reba what an awful way to end Downton Abbey! That's unbelievable. I would've been on the phone to mall management today. Just unacceptable.

Oct 22, 2019, 4:46am

>75 RebaRelishesReading: Reba, I'm glad the cold has mostly gone. I'm fine today, thanks.

Oh no re the Downton experience! That must breach all sorts of regulations too - having people inside a locked building is a health and safety hazard as well as very annoying for the people. (I suppose at least the walk right around the mall would have been good for your steps). What did you think of the film?

Oct 22, 2019, 9:23am

>76 brenzi:, >77 susanj67: i guess we weren't actually locked in since we did find doors that opened but I'm sure glad I wasn't fleeing anything/anyone!

The movie was OK but not great imo. It was fun seeing all of the cast/characters again and having their futures redefined. The story line was pretty thin though, I thought.

Oct 26, 2019, 1:44pm

Wetware by Craig Nova**

Briggs is a biotech engineer for Wetware, a company that manufactures human clones who are destined to do unpleasant jobs humans don't want to do but Briggs starts adding things like a sense of humor, intellectual brilliance and the ability to have feelings.

I don't generally read science fiction so I'm probably not a good judge but I wasn't impressed by this book. It shows creativity in thinking of this future but the characters didn't engage me and the end left me totally cold.

Oct 26, 2019, 6:09pm

No science fiction for me either Reba. I'm happily ensconced in India right now, we'll, not happily exactly but a very compelling read....The Space Between Us.

Oct 27, 2019, 5:53am

>75 RebaRelishesReading: Yikes! Glad you found your way home, Reba.

Oct 27, 2019, 8:33am

>80 brenzi: Hi Bonnie -- hope you're enjoying fall. My favorite season by far so I'm really enjoying being here for it. One good thing about CLSC reading is it gets me out of my box a little -- even if only to confirm that I'm happiest with my usual reading :) Books in India I generally like however.

>81 charl08: Thanks Charlotte -- me too :)

Editado: Oct 27, 2019, 6:03pm

Daily Life in Holland in the Year 1566 by Rien Poortvliet*****

Rien Poortvliet was a wonderful artist who wrote and illustrated several books in his lifetime. I remember him from my time in the Netherlands when he did a TV special about rabbits and hares, illustrating as he talked. To this day I know the difference between the two thanks to that magical and instructive show. We stayed in an inn in the Shenandoah Valley last spring that had been in constant use since 1795 and they had this book of Poortvliet's available in one of the lounges. It looked interesting so I ordered a copy and spent a delightful afternoon today reading it, and savoring the beautiful illustrations, by the fire.

Editado: Oct 27, 2019, 7:47pm

I started listening to a new work of historical fiction - Mistress of the Ritz by Melanie Benjamin on my way up to Birmingham yesterday. So far I like the book and the narrator is doing a great job. This is not great literature but it is good reading/listening. I’m glad I ran across it on the shelves of the public library the other day.

I like it when LT readers tell bout where they learned about a book and why they picked it up.

I am getting ready to spend my Sunday evening with Masterpiece Theater on PBS. It has been a cool and rainy weekend down here and i will be watching TV and doing some crocheting on a Christmas gift.

Oct 28, 2019, 8:53am

>84 benitastrnad: Hi Benita! Sounds like that might be a great book for walking. I may add it to my growing list of Audibles. What is on Masterpiece now? Since we stream I lose track of what is being broadcast at any given time. We're watching season 9 of Doc Martin -- one of my favorite shows.

Oct 28, 2019, 9:10am

>84 benitastrnad: So, I went ahead and bought it :)

Oct 29, 2019, 1:30pm

>86 RebaRelishesReading:
I am really getting into it and the recorded version is very well done. I am listening to it on my commute so it will take me a couple of weeks to get through it. You will probably be done with it before me.

Oct 30, 2019, 9:57am

>87 benitastrnad: You'll probably finish first because I won't start for a while yet. It isn't one for the two of us to listen to on the drive west and then when we get there I will probably listen to a couple of others that are lined up before I start it but I do a lot more audio in San Diego because I walk more there so its turn will come :)

Nov 1, 2019, 8:13am

Educated is that sort of read!

Snagged the book funny to send to my book group!

Reba! You are backsliding in the book image department! Hardly a one image came through for me! If no one has uploaded the cover you can just do "copy image address" pop it in the 'grab' place and bob's yer uncle, darlin'

Oh I do love Doc Martin -- we're saving that for the depths of winter.

Nov 1, 2019, 8:46am

>89 sibylline: Oh Lucy, I do wish I understood better what you mean :0. I can't remember how I got the image addresses except for the last one but maybe I'm getting them from the LT ones in "add books", is that the problem?

Nov 1, 2019, 8:52am

So we're planning to leave Chautauqua on Monday and drive west on 90 to Oregon. Hubby is most worried about hitting snow but I keep telling him "it's only November, won't be a problem" so this morning I open the curtains and find snow on all of the surrounding roofs with dustings under trees and bushes on the ground -- yikes!! He isn't down yet but I'm afraid he's going to freak!! That after we lost power just seconds after agreeing it was time to go to bed last night. He was still feet-up in his power recliner (quite a struggle to get him out of it). It's VERY dark here when there are no street lights and it's cloudy. I made my way to a flashlight so we were OK getting upstairs and into bed but still, I'm beginning to think it's time to go back to San Diego :)

Nov 1, 2019, 9:35am

>90 RebaRelishesReading: - I can see all your book cover images, Reba. It's not just one thing that causes problems - a person's browser, operating system, etc. can make them disappear. Sometimes I can see them on my laptop but not my phone or vice versa.

Safe travels next week!

Nov 1, 2019, 11:06am

Umm, you know they had snow in Denver, Oklahoma and Kansas this week, right? Better check those weather maps!

Nov 1, 2019, 12:08pm

At this time of year the weather all along the north is changeable. Just check the weather every day and make adjustments as necessary. You can mosey along to San Diego along whatever route makes itself presentable. Right?

If you are going along I90, my sister lives in Bozeman, MT as does an LT friend. I believe that there is also an active LT'er in, or around, Missoula. Are you up for Meetups?

Nov 1, 2019, 12:16pm

Reba, I can also see your pictures (I can't see *mine*, but yours are fine LOL). Like Katie, I can see different things on different devices. So. Annoying.

You would have been so proud of me this morning - I made five purchases at the mall using just my phone :-) I would have used it for the other two as well, but I had loyalty cards so I had to get my purse out. I'm going to see if the loyalty cards will go onto Google Pay. I put one on there, but I don't remember now exactly how I did it, and I didn't need that one today. It's so nice to just get my phone out of my pocket and pay - no searching for my purse in my bag. And I owe it all to you and your good example :-)

I hope your drive back goes OK - we'll all be following along :-)

Nov 1, 2019, 12:20pm

How is the bathroom remodel coming? Do you have all the pieces and parts ready?

Nov 1, 2019, 4:05pm

>92 katiekrug: Ah, good to hear, Katie. Since I really don't know what to do about it I think I'll just keep on keeping on and hope it works most times for most people. (Sorry Lucy :( )

>93 ronincats:, >94 benitastrnad: Hi Roni and hi Benita! Fortunately we plan to be well north of those places (LOL). Actually we're going to Oregon first and then to San Francisco (visiting all of the "kids"). We will be in Bozeman but just a quick over-night so I'm afraid no meet-ups this trip. We will watch the weather maps as we travel but we have all-wheel drive and good tires so I'm comfortable we'll be fine. When we left to get the car serviced and run some errands about 9:30 this morning we found the car covered with an inch or so of snow. Hubby was able to laugh, even when I pelted him with a snowball while we were cleaning it off. (I don't think he knows that there are flakes falling as I write this though :>)

>95 susanj67: I'm so glad you're liking it, Susan!! I agree about just pulling your phone out of your pocket and "Bob's your uncle" :) The whole 2 1/2 weeks I was in the U.K. I think I only used the physical card once. It's getting better here but the U.S. is still well behind the U.K.. Thanks for good driving wishes. I'll try to post every day or so.

>96 benitastrnad: The errands I referred to were to pick up the tile, adhesive, grout and flooring. With that now safely stored next to the stairs we have everything in house except the big pieces (shower floor, shower door, vanity and vanity counter) which will be delivered in a couple of weeks. The contractor will be here to accept the delivery. So work hasn't begun but we committed to the design decisions made. Whew!! The actual work will be done sometime over the winter while we're not here. Contractor's like to do as much "outside" work as they can before winter really sets in so I'm not sure when he'll start here but it doesn't matter as long as he finishes by next May.

Editado: Nov 1, 2019, 6:25pm

Oh I didn't realize you'd gotten some snow down there Reba. No snow here but really cold and windy. I wore my winter parka for my walk today which is a first for the season. The whole deal with hat and gloves too.

Have a good trip back to San Diego and of course you know there was snow in Chicago I'm sure.

Nov 2, 2019, 12:32am

Safe travels, Reba! Your road trip sounds like fun. I still have an ambition to see more of the US (especially the national parks). Maybe one day.

Editado: Nov 2, 2019, 10:35am

>98 brenzi: Thanks for the good wishes, Bonnie. I can imagine you needed your whole winter outfit to walk though. It was 34 (1 in celsius) degrees on our back porch this morning. No snow though and yesterday it wasn't much. In fact, the biggest deposit was on the car. I did hear about the snow in Chicago but I'm trusting that means there won't be any next week :) See you next summer.

>99 charl08: Thanks to you too Charlotte. We enjoy the road trips and this is a route we've not been on in many, many years so that should be fun. Just hope there's no snow to worry my Hubby!

Nov 3, 2019, 9:11am

Safe travels, Reba. Fingers crossed that you avoid snow.

Nov 3, 2019, 9:12am

Safe travels.

Editado: Nov 3, 2019, 9:21am

The Rains Came by Louis Bromfield****1/2

My father owned four matched sets of books for as long as I can remember and when he died in 1971 they became mine. They were 1) a selection of "classics", 2)books by Steinbeck 3) books by Lloyd Douglas and, books by Bromfield. I had never heard of either Douglas nor Bromfield so for many years they sat unread on my bookshelves (I didn't even put them into Mt. TBR because I didn't plan to read them). When I decided to read the Pulitzer fiction winners I discovered Bromfield (Early Autumn 1927)and decided to read my father's books.

The Rains Came is set in a prosperous Indian state in the 1930's. The Maharajah is a caring and progressive man who has worked throughout his long life to make life better for all of his subjects by eliminating the caste system and providing education for everyone. The main characters are drawn from all nationalities and religions and they and their relationships are complicated and realistic. The book begins at the end of the dry season and everyone is waiting anxiously for the rains to come...and they do! This is a 600 page epic of dealing with nature, and society, and self. Bromfield deserves to be remembered.

P.S. Sorry about the uninspiring cover but, as one of a set, the cover on my book really is uninspiring.

Nov 4, 2019, 6:25pm

We got everything buttoned up at Chautauqua and were on the road by 8:30 a.m. I'm always sorry to leave our little NY nest but I am looking forward to family visits on our way back to San Diego and am looking forward to taking up our California life again. Downer was a notification mid-morning that a mysterious charge had been applied to our checking account. Poor Hubby has spent half the day (it seems) trying to figure out what it is and what to do about it (because we are now convinced that it was an error or scam). Didn't do much to make the first day of our road trip fun :(

Nov 4, 2019, 9:09pm

What an awful way to start out your trip Reba. I hope it gets straightened out.

Nov 5, 2019, 9:23am

>104 RebaRelishesReading:, >105 brenzi: Thanks Bonnie. Hubby spent an hour or more on the phone when we got to our hotel and finally found out that it was our home owners insurance that had been given to a new company and had the rate doubled! The new company offered "California fires" as the reason for the huge increase, never mind that we live in the middle of the city and no where near any possible wild land fire. He asked the agent about other options and they found a different carrier (Liberty) who offered a rate only somewhat higher than last year so it's all worked out OK.

Nov 6, 2019, 8:42am

Insurance companies can be the very devil, Reba. I’m glad you and Hub got it sorted.

There’s a pretty fair ancient movie of that Bromfield title out there somewhere.

Nov 6, 2019, 9:59am

>107 bohemima: I knew there was at least one film made from it (several of his books were turned into films I believe) but haven't seen it. I should look for it some time.

Nov 6, 2019, 10:04am

The Colors of All the Cattle by Alexander McCall Smith**** (audio)

Hubby and I enjoy listening to The Ladies' No. 1 Detective Agency books when we travel and started this one on our New England trip last month. We finished it on our way to Indiana yesterday. This time Mma. Ramotswe is pressured to run for city council by her friend Mma. Potokwane who is strongly opposed to a new hotel that is proposed. Another minor thread is a case in which the Agency is trying to find out who "knocked over" an elderly doctor with their blue car. As always a simple story but so full of wonderful characters and clues to Botswanan culture that it's a pure delight.

Nov 6, 2019, 12:15pm

>109 RebaRelishesReading:
I like listening to those books as well. The reader is excellent! And brings such color and life to the stories. I love reading in this manner while I am traveling. It makes the miles go by so quickly.

I finished listening to Mistress of the Ritz and it was really good. Historical fiction isn't all that hot right now in the reading world, but I really liked this one. The narrator is probably the reason why. She was excellent in this production. She made the book come alive.

Nov 6, 2019, 5:43pm

>110 benitastrnad: I have Mistress of the Ritz on my phone too but that one won't be Hubby's "thing" so I'll listen to it while walking once we're in San Diego. On my own right now I'm listening to Deep Down Dark which is about the mining cave-in in Chile a few years ago. It's excellent!

Editado: Nov 6, 2019, 5:58pm

It's cold in Chicago today but still we took the bus and then the "L" into the city for two of our favorite "traditions", a visit to the Art Institute and lunch at Berghoff's. It was a most successful trip and I learned that you can use Apple Pay on the busses and "L" trains in Chicago too :)

(OK, I'll fess up...these photos were taken in 2016, last time we were in Chicago. I didn't get any new ones today)

Nov 7, 2019, 5:49pm

We had a short day today -- drove to Oak Park to tour the house where Hemingway was born and lived to age 6. The guide had an amazing store of facts and stories which were most interesting so it was well worth the 40 minute or so drive from the hotel. We arrived a bit early for our pre-booked tour so had a nice time walking around the lovely neighborhood -- well I had a nice time, Hubby was freezing. Don't know why, it was 32F/0C and not all that windy :) Tomorrow we move on to Wisconsin where the forecast I saw yesterday was for 21F/-6C. As long as we don't hit a blizzard....

Nov 8, 2019, 3:02pm

Drove to Tomah, Wisconsin today with lovely snowy scenes along the road (none ON the road though thank goodness). Highest temp we saw was 27F/-3C. Since the road was dry and sky was sunny (most of the way) hubby was comfortable and it was a nice drive.

Roni, our hotel is around the corner from an Albi -- I'm tempted to check ;>

Nov 8, 2019, 6:00pm

The Women of the Copper Country by Mary Doria Russell*****

I am so grateful to my LT buddies who introduced me to Maria Doria Russell this year! Her books are well researched, well written and delightful. This one tells the story of the 1913 strike at the Calumet & Hecla mine in Michigan's upper peninsula and the role played by the wives, mothers, and sisters of the miners. I checked WiKipedia and found that the story told is indeed accurate (I should have known, right?) and it's the story both of the greed and callousness of the company but also a beautiful story of female strength and courage. Highly recommended.

Nov 8, 2019, 6:44pm

>115 RebaRelishesReading: Yay for Mary Doria Russell Reba. She's just the best historical fiction writer. My favorite remains A Thread of Grace but they're all just so good.

Nov 9, 2019, 6:09pm

>116 brenzi: Hi Bonnie. I haven't read A Thread of Grace (since I just discovered Russell a couple of months ago). Looks like that one had better go on the wish list :)

Nov 9, 2019, 11:45pm

Safe travels, Reba! And let me know if you have time for a meet up when you are in Portland.

Nov 10, 2019, 8:15am

>118 banjo123: Thank you Rhonda. I've been thinking about how nice it would be to meet up since we decided on our homeward path but I just don't see how it's going to be possible this trip. We arrive Thursday afternoon or evening daughter #1 is taking us to a play Friday evening, we're baby sitting grandson on Saturday and leaving on Sunday. So, sad though it makes me I think I'm going to have to skip it this trip :(

Nov 10, 2019, 8:45am

Safe travels, Reba. It sounds like after a rocky start, you are having a smooth journey.

Editado: Nov 10, 2019, 3:56pm

In Wisconsin (above) it was in the 20's but roads were dry and skies were blue. In Minnesota and eastern North Dakota it was in the 50's. Today temps started at 28 and dropped to 21 by noon, and it was wet and slick with "winter storm warning" messages along the road :( so instead of going to Gillette, WY as planned we stopped in Rapid City, ND where it is now seriously snowing. Good news is that we got a beautiful room for a great price and the hotel has a restaurant attached so we can shelter here in comfort until this nonsense is over :)

Nov 10, 2019, 5:35pm

>121 RebaRelishesReading: Oh, my goodness! Hope you have plenty of reading while you wait out the weather. I will be sorry not to see you in Portland, but that is very understandable.

Nov 11, 2019, 6:33am

Aw, Wisconsin! Cold and snowy, but with clear roads and skies sounds exactly right. I loved how many sunny days we had in winter there and miss that now that we're back in Overcast Ohio.

Nov 11, 2019, 6:50am

Reba, I hope your books last longer than the snow :-) Wisconsin looks very pretty up there :-)

Nov 11, 2019, 9:31am

>122 banjo123: Rhonda, >123 scaifea: Amber, >124 susanj67: Susan. I spent yesterday afternoon listening to Deep Down Dark: The Untold Stories of 33 Men Buried in a Chilean Mine, and the Miracle That Set Them Free (which is very, very good) and knitting. I also have 1947 in the hotel with me (having a hard time getting into this one) and two bags of unread books in the car so I will be fine. Last night from dinner time to bedtime it was snowing sideways outside though so I was not inclined to go get any of them but the sun is shining this morning so I could probably get to the car if I really needed to...but doubt I will. Tomorrow temps are supposed to be well into thaw range and we expect the roads to be cleared by then so we can continue west.

Nov 11, 2019, 11:50am

Deep Down Dark sounds terrifying. Thanks for the reassurance re the two bags of books - I feel you will be OK. Hope the weather improves as predicted.

Nov 11, 2019, 6:15pm

>125 RebaRelishesReading: I hope you stick with 1947 Reba. I thought it was one of the most fascinating books I'd ever read.

Nov 11, 2019, 6:59pm

>126 charl08: Deep Down Dark really isn't frightening because you know at the beginning how it all ended (with everyone getting out safely). I won't summarize it yet but I will say it's one of the best books I've read this year and beautifully read as well.

>127 brenzi: Thanks for the encouragement Bonnie. I plan to stick with it and hope it'll grab me soon. Or maybe it's just not the right time for me.

Editado: Nov 12, 2019, 10:28pm

Before I tell you about today I just had to share this cartoon that I saw on a non-lT friend's Facebook page today --

and that's why I don't keep Mt. TBR on my bedside table :)

Nov 12, 2019, 10:35pm

Today's weather forecast was pretty good so we decided to move on. After breakfast we went out to load the car but first had to brush several inches of snow off the top and chip at least 3/4" of ice off of the grill, headlights, rearview mirrors and windshield. The sky was clear but it was in the mid-20'sF/-3C. The road was reasonable but there were warnings about slick spots and in fact we came to several big stretches where the lanes weren't cleared at all. The temperature got above freezing after about 11 am and roads cleared up allowing fairly normal travel most of the day. We had to drive farther than usual because we had stopped a couple of hundred miles short of our goal on Sunday and late in the afternoon we had about 30 or 40 miles of "severe side winds" -- just to keep the fun going lol. We are now safely in Bozeman, Montana which puts us back on schedule. I must admit that now that our weather adventure is over without damage or injury I rather enjoyed it (Hubby is beginning to doubt my sanity).

Nov 13, 2019, 2:11pm

I hope you are continuing to enjoy your travels back home, Reba, even if hubby is not too sure.

Nov 13, 2019, 9:23pm

The Body in the Castle Wall by Martin Walker*** (audio)

Together with the Ladies' No. 1 Detective Agency book, the Bruno, Chief of Police series is our favorite road trip listening. In this one the body of a young American scholar is found at the bottom of a well together with a tiny kitten. Was this a terrible accident? Perhaps she fell into the well while trying to rescue the kitten. Or was it murder? As always, the story includes descriptions of food, French provincial life and Bruno's social life. Delightful light reading/listening.

Nov 13, 2019, 9:27pm

>131 Familyhistorian: Thanks Meg. We had a smooth drive today with temperatures all above freezing and only very little precipitation and that all in the form of liquid water. Whew! We're in Coeur d'Alene tonight and will finish our drive to Portland tomorrow for a weekend with daughters, daughters' partners and our little 22 month old grandson.

Nov 16, 2019, 6:12pm

We're having a good family visit in Portland. Last night daughter #1 treated us to a production of Margaret Atwood's The Penelopiad at the University of Portland. I'm woefully ignorant when it comes to the classics (sorry Amber, but I'm afraid it's true) but found the approach very interesting. The cast was all young women students who did a great job. A lovely evening out.
Of course, we've visited daughter #2's family, which includes our 22-month old grandson "Q", every day. Today we even got to babysit him for a few hours while parents toured a chocolate factory. Auntie came to help but actually we would have done fine on our own. Brunch with #2 family tomorrow morning and then we're on our way south to San Francisco to house/pet sit for my son while he and his lady spend a week in Paris. We love SF and are already deciding which of our favorite places we'll visit while there.

Nov 17, 2019, 8:19am

>134 RebaRelishesReading: Reba, yay you made it through the snow! It sounds like Portland is going well. The Penelopiad production sounds excellent. I loved the book when I read it - very snarky. Happy travels to San Francisco!

Nov 17, 2019, 11:37am

>135 susanj67: Thanks Susan. We're all packed up and ready to go but we're meeting daughter #2 & Co for farewell brunch at 9:30 so need to kill a little more time before we leave. Today and tomorrow on the road and then 11 days in San Francisco with son & lady. They'll be in Paris for the first week and we'll be minding the two dogs then we'll stay for Thanksgiving before heading home. I must say that my tolerance for road trips has really be tested this time and I'm getting quite anxious to be in my own place.

Nov 20, 2019, 2:18am

Hi, Reba - are you going to be actually in the city, or elsewhere? I'm in the East Bay, and seldom make it over to SF, but I'd love to meet up while you're in the area.

Nov 20, 2019, 4:48pm

>137 jjmcgaffey: Actually we're in Pacifica but we could meet you in the city. I love meetups :) PM me with some suggestions if that would work for you.

Nov 23, 2019, 10:29am

Reba, I love road trips so the account of your travels is fascinating to me. The snow adds the excitement that you could probably do without, though. I’m glad you got some Q time in. And now the fun of a possible meetup is in the air. You are having quite the trip! Thanks for sharing your adventures with us.

Editado: Nov 24, 2019, 10:51am

>139 Donna828: You're welcome Donna, I'm happy to share. We've been in the Bay area since last Monday taking care of the two sweetest dogs in the world while their "parents" (my son and his fiancee) are in Paris. It's giving us a chance to visit our favorite places from when we lived here from 2001-2003. (The Book Passage in Corte Madera, Sweet Ginger in Sausalito, Rose's Cafe on Union, and, today, Fog City Diner/Union Square/the Ferry Terminal. The weather has been perfect and we're having a wonderful time and even have that meet-up to look forward to. Truth be told, though, I've been living out of a suitcase for long enough now and I'm looking forward to being home.

P.S. When we were in The Book Passage I was buying an Isabelle Allende and there she sat 10 feet away having coffee. I knew she lived in Marin County but never encountered her in the years I lived there. She was with a friend so I didn't bother her but it was cool to "run into her" like that.

Editado: Nov 23, 2019, 8:48pm

>140 RebaRelishesReading:
I guess that proves that authors are people to. They drink coffee in coffee shops. It is easy to think of them as something else because the public either knows them from their books or they only see them on a stage or at a signing. It is easy to think of them as something other than “regular people.” Especially when it is somebody like Isabelle Allende.

Nov 23, 2019, 9:39pm

>140 RebaRelishesReading: I see that spellcheck has been at work in your message! Glad you are enjoying SF. Beautiful weather in SD right now (fortunately since I had a craft show today) but rain coming in for Thanksgiving to mess up holiday travel, another soaker!

Nov 23, 2019, 10:13pm

>140 RebaRelishesReading: Im glad my finances are not in Paris as I need them right here at the moment!

Glad to see that you are having a great time in the Bay area.

Nov 24, 2019, 10:53am

>141 benitastrnad: Hi Benita! Nice to see you.

>142 ronincats:, 143 Oops, I didn't see that one, Roni and Paul. Thanks for stopping by and reading my post :) We'll be home on Friday, just in time for the rain I guess :)

Nov 24, 2019, 4:37pm

Rain starts Wednesday, Thursday is supposed to be the heaviest day. Monitor the conditions carefully as, with all the holiday traffic, it's supposed to be a mess.

Editado: Nov 24, 2019, 7:10pm

Deep Down Dark by Hector Tobar*****

I just realized that I didn't post this book when I finished it although I did mention along the way how much I was enjoying it. Mr. Tobar does a marvelous job of telling the story of the 33 Chilean miners who were trapped under ground for 62(not sure that's exactly right) days in 2010. He obviously spent a great deal of effort and time interviewing everyone involved and does a wonderful job of describing what was happening from the perspective of the trapped miners, their families and those who were working to free them. I remember the incident and so knew what the outcome was but I was still captured by the story. I very highly recommend this book.

Nov 24, 2019, 6:52pm

>145 ronincats: Thanks Roni. We plan to travel Friday and I hope everyone will already be where they are going but not be on their way home yet :) If it gets bad we'll stop along the way but I suspect it will have to be VERY bad to cause that because we're both pretty anxious to get home. Rain is due here on Thursday too so I guess it will be wet the whole way there. :(

Nov 24, 2019, 7:09pm

1947 Where Now Begins by Elisabeth Asbrink***

I had a hard time getting into this book but ended up liking it. It's interestingly written with the events of the year being reported chronologically and divided by month. Some topics, like the future of Palestine, are reported on each month while others only crop up from time to time. Some topics are huge, like the future of Palestine, the future of India/Pakistan, the recovery and future of Europe but some are almost tabloid like reports like the progress of the love affair between Simone de Beauvoir and Nelson Algren, the success of Thelonious Monk's career or of Grace Hopper discovering a bug in her computer. It provides an interesting overview of what was happening that year. I particularly liked the overview of the events concerning Palestine which both refreshed my memory and added a good bit of new informations about the history leading to the mess the world is still dealing with there now. For me it was a worthwhile but not riveting read.

Nov 25, 2019, 8:28am

>147 RebaRelishesReading: Hope you have a good week in SF and safe travels.
I was looking at some links related to a friend's work on South Africa and remembered our conversation about your visit to Botswana. This article refers to the expulsion of the academic I mentioned hearing speak (more than 12 years ago, which seems unbelievable to me).

Nov 25, 2019, 11:46am

>149 charl08: Most interesting reading, Charlotte. Thank you for sending the link.

Nov 25, 2019, 12:09pm

>148 RebaRelishesReading:
I recently read about Grace Hopper and her "Bug" as well. it was a story I didn't know, so it was fun to find out there is a reason why computer bugs are called "bugs." It was a children's book Grace Hopper: Queen of Computer Code and I enjoyed it. (and the bug was a moth.) The illustrations were very graphic and linear, but together with the print it worked well and would be useful in many an elementary classroom.

Editado: Nov 25, 2019, 6:41pm

Thank you Jennifer for suggesting a meet-up today. We met for lunch in Alameda and then visited a used goods store with a large used book section and a new bookstore across the street. I got Crossing to Safety by Wallace Stegner at the used store and The Topeka School by Ben Lerner and Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson (BB from Katie) at the new store.

Jennifer on the left, me on the right with books

Nov 25, 2019, 6:47pm

>151 benitastrnad: It is a fun story, isn't it Benita?

Nov 26, 2019, 9:57am

>152 RebaRelishesReading: That's a lovely photo, Reba! And hooray for another LT meetup! I hope the dog-sitting is going well and you're enjoying SF.

Editado: Nov 26, 2019, 1:59pm

>154 susanj67: Hi Susan. Dog-sitting is going very well (I'm enjoying it more than Hubby because I would really like a dog and these two are especially sweet). We've managed to go out to one of our favorite places each day (we lived here for 2 1/2 years from 2001-03), weather has been wonderful and this is a most comfortable house so it's been a lovely stay. Son and fiancée are coming home tonight, we'll celebrate Thanksgiving with them on Thursday and then head home Friday. :)

Nov 26, 2019, 1:27pm

>152 RebaRelishesReading:
Hooray for meetups! Jennifer is fun on meetups. I met her once when ALA was in San Francisco. We had a good time at a Starbucks after picking up books in the exhibit hall. I think that was about 5 years ago now.

Hooray for books! I ordered 4 from Amazon today. I needed to use up some credits and I decided to gift myself. I have been trying to use the library and ILL more and more and I just decided that I was going to splurge. So I did.

Nov 26, 2019, 1:59pm

>156 benitastrnad: Good for you, Benita. One should splurge on oneself from time to time and books are the best splurge there is (says she who has bought 5 in the past week).

Nov 26, 2019, 9:18pm

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel**** (audio)

This is a rather less dark post-apocalyptic novel than many and so I liked it more than most. In the first chapter a well known actor dies of a heart attack on stage while performing King Lear. Within a couple of weeks afterward, a new strain of flu races through the population killing 99% of humans on earth. With no one left to make repairs, operate machines, etc. modern life ends shortly later. The story moves back and forth between people trying to survive after the flu and the story of friends and family of the actor before the flu. There is much more to the story than just survival with strains of what is really important in life running throughout. There were a couple of leaps of faith (or willingness to suspend reality) that bothered me but all by all I enjoyed it at least in part because it was so well read.

Nov 26, 2019, 9:19pm

It was a very good meetup - not least because, in researching it, I discovered a used book store (well, mostly books) that I hadn't known existed, in my own town!

It was a lot of fun talking to you and your husband (not sure if you/he want his name posted), Reba. You two kept asking me fascinating questions, and I kept forgetting to ask them back, though. So what's your favorite book, or one of them? I got started talking about Hellspark and never asked the return question.

>156 benitastrnad: Yes, that was a lot of fun! And I got a huge heap of books, some of which have become favorites. I'll believe you about the 5 years ago, I have no idea. Not recently is about the best I could do.

Nov 26, 2019, 9:20pm

It is storming like crazy here and I have to pick up son and fiancee from the airport in a couple of hours. The house is near the top of a hill overlooking the ocean so I imagine we're getting hit harder than the airport on the other side of the hill but still!! I went out to rescue a large flower pot that was blown over a little while ago and wondered if I was going to be blown off my feet as well.

Nov 26, 2019, 9:32pm

>158 RebaRelishesReading: I liked that one a lot too Reba. Great meet up pic. You may rival Benita in the number of LT people you've met lol. We're going to get some fierce winds here tomorrow, just in time to disrupt everyone's Thanksgiving In one way or another.

Nov 26, 2019, 10:48pm

>161 brenzi:
The champion LT meetup person is Daryl (Kidzdoc) from Atlanta. He has met LT’ers all over the U.S. and Europe.

I mostly meet people at the Library conferences.

Nov 27, 2019, 1:50am

>152 RebaRelishesReading: Nice haul! I am particularly keen to find Red on the Bone.

>158 RebaRelishesReading: I really liked this one - the way that art continued to be important despite the changes.

Nov 27, 2019, 10:10am

>152 RebaRelishesReading: Hooray for meet ups!

>158 RebaRelishesReading: I LOVE Station Eleven; I've used it in class, and the students' reactions have been favorable as well.

Nov 27, 2019, 11:40am

>159 jjmcgaffey: We enjoyed spending time with you Jennifer and hearing about your life and life in Alameda (we talked about moving to Alameda all the way back to Pacifica). Favorite book? Wow that's a hard one. I looked back through this year's list and would say The Nickel Boys and Deep Down Dark were my favorites for this year. A Man Called Ove stands out as a favorite from recent years but I might come up with more if I looked back over my reading lists for those years.

>161 brenzi: Hi Bonnie! I've met 20+ LTers now I think and I've enjoyed every meet up. I hope to meet many more too.

>163 charl08: Hi Charlotte -- yes, art really mattered to the symphony and they drew great crowds so it seemed to matter to many people. Nice to think that would be the case if disaster ever comes.

>164 BLBera: Hi Beth. Glad your students liked Station Eleven. I think there's a lot in there to discuss so it should make a great book for a class or book club.

Nov 28, 2019, 12:51pm

Happy Thanksgiving to American LTers :) We're spending it with my son and (almost)d-i-l and will head south after afternoon dinner. A couple of friends were expected but sent excuses last night so instead of 6 for dinner we will be just 4. We went a bit over-board trying to give everyone their favorite dessert so now we have a carrot cake, a cheese cake, a "chess" pie, an apple pie and a pumpkin pie...for four people!! I'm secretly hoping we will be offered some left-overs to take home with us :)

Nov 30, 2019, 5:08pm

We arrived home about noon yesterday (with a lot of dessert left-overs) and have been working like crazy since trying to get things sorted out, put away, etc. Pretty much done now except for a huge pile of laundry. I think I'm going to save that for tomorrow :)

Nov 30, 2019, 5:26pm

Shakespeare: The World as Stage by Bill Bryson*** (audio)

This was our audio for the final leg of our car trip. The discussion of Shakespeare's life, writing and the theater at his time was interesting although not as entertaining as some of his books.

Nov 30, 2019, 9:11pm

Glad to hear you are home. It was quite an odyssey! With lots of territory covered.

Nov 30, 2019, 9:49pm

Welcome home!! I am sorry that I didn't get to see you as you passed through Porltand but it sounds like you had a great stop here anyways and managed to fit in a meetup later on, so all is well. Loved your day-by-day road trip share. Very fun and a little dicey with the weather! Enjoy sleeping in your own bed tonight. : )

Nov 30, 2019, 10:34pm

I am relieved to know you are safely home, what with the Grapevine being closed twice in the last three days!

Dic 1, 2019, 11:42am

>169 benitastrnad: Thanks, Benita. We're glad to be home (or I will be once everything is put away and the laundry is done).

>170 Berly: I'm sorry I didn't get to see you all while we were in Portland. We may fly up in the spring and I will try really hard to plan in enough time for a meet-up 'cuz I really enjoy the Portland group.

>171 ronincats: We're glad to be home too, Roni. We kept an eye on the weather and heard that the Grapeview might be closed so we left after dinner on Thanksgiving and drove 101. We spent the night in Buellton and were home by noon on Friday. Certainly have had beautiful weather since we got here. I'm doing pretty well with getting settled. Everything is put away except the HUGE laundry which I started this morning. Now to concentrate on Christmas since it turns out that my son and co. are coming down the weekend of the 21st for birthday and Christmas. I was thinking about not putting the tree up this year but that's back on the to-do list :)

Dic 1, 2019, 11:47am

Glad you had a great trip and that you made it home safely.

Have fun with the Christmas decorating :)

Dic 6, 2019, 11:54am

One of the "perks" of being over 70 in California is that you have to take the written test to renew your drivers license. I literally have not taken that test in 57 1/2 years (yikes!!) so I've been studying. I have a clean record and truly do know how to drive but all of the "x-feet from", or "speed-limit in alleys" type questions aren't things I carry around in my head -- so please send me good vibes at 11:30 PST tomorrow morning, I may need them.

Dic 6, 2019, 4:57pm

>174 RebaRelishesReading: sending good luck vibes your way.

Dic 7, 2019, 11:07am

>175 figsfromthistle: Thank you -- Driver's License test is in 3 hours. I'm absurdly nervous about it!

Dic 7, 2019, 11:09am

Good luck with the test, Reba!

Dic 7, 2019, 5:18pm

>177 katiekrug: Thank you, Katie -- I passed! So I'm a legal driver for another 5 years. :)

Dic 7, 2019, 8:35pm

Excellent news!

Dic 7, 2019, 9:54pm

Ugh drivers test! I'm glad NY hasn't thought of that yet Reba. Good to see you passed..

Dic 7, 2019, 10:18pm

Hurray for passing the DL test!! I never doubted you. : )

Dic 8, 2019, 11:34am

Thank you Katie and Kim!

Bonnie, what part has NY not thought of yet? This was a written test and surely you have to do one of those to get a license. Is it that NY doesn't require a retest when you're over 70?

I was a surprised at how nervous I was about the whole thing and now I don't even know how well (or not) I did. It's on a computer and the only feedback was "you passed" that flashed up on the screen but no idea whether I just barely scraped through or got them all right. Oh well, things will probably have changed before I have to do it again in five years

Dic 8, 2019, 6:19pm

Good to see that you made it home after your long trek, Reba. A written driver’s test at 70? I’m glad we don’t have that! I think we do have to do something at 80, though.

Dic 8, 2019, 6:41pm

>82 RebaRelishesReading: NY doesn't have a written test for drivers over 70 Reba. Or if they do they forgot to notify me lol.

Dic 8, 2019, 10:28pm

My parents both just had to do it, at 70, in California. Both studied like mad and passed with flying colors - I believe it's "not more than 5 (of 20) wrong" is a pass. Easy peasy.

Dic 8, 2019, 11:55pm

Congrats on the test! I do think there are a lot of silly questions on those tests, so I would be equally nervous.

Editado: Dic 9, 2019, 8:25am

I am just seeing this thread and the Inn to Inn/Vermont discussion! Anyone who does this is totally invited to MY HOUSE one way or another or a meet-up in, say, Middlebury where there is a superb used bookstore . . . and also I might join you if I can and if the timing works.

When our daughter was doing the driving classes, she kept reprimanding me for holding the steering wheel "wrong" and not doing this or that, like distances from the car ahead, so I learned that things have changed. I don't think Vermont inflicts this sort of testing on us, but what do I know? When I moved here in 1980 Vermont's car insurance policy was that you didn't need to purchase any until AFTER you'd had an accident!!!!!

None of your books are showing up -- means they aren't LT covers but from Amazon . . . all you have to do is go to "change cover" and see if there is the one you want in LT covers and use that, or click on an amazon cover you want and then put it into the Grab and it will go into the LT covers and you can use it. I realize I am a bore about this but I find it very frustrating to look at a lot of question marks.

Dic 9, 2019, 5:47pm

>183 Familyhistorian:, >184 brenzi:, >185 jjmcgaffey:, >186 banjo123: Hi there Meg, Bonnie, Jennifer, and Rhonda and thanks for the congratulations and sympathetic words lol. Actually the book said I could only miss 2 of 18 (3 of 18 if it's a new license rather than a renewal) but it didn't score me, just said "You Passed". Anyway, it's over and one more thing is checked off of my "to do when we get back to CA" list.

>187 sibylline: Hi Lucy. I was taught to hold the wheel at 10 and 2 but now they say that's dangerous with air bags so I'm trying to retrain myself to 9 and 3 -- but it feels really awkward. I got a good laugh about no insurance until you've had an accident.

If a group wants to form for the Vermont Inn to Inn I could be interested. The friend I walked the Kennet and Avon with said the other day that "we're going to do another one" and she wants to big the itinerary. I'll be sure she knows about the Vermont choice.
Right now I have a strained Achilles tendon so walking is pretty uncomfortable but when that gets better I might just be up for another cross country trek :)

As to the covers, I don't think you're being a bore but I just don't know how to do things like "put it into the Grab". I do get covers, especially audio book covers, from Amazon and I use "Grab one from the web" in the add a photo to the gallery section but I guess that isn't what you mean.

Dic 9, 2019, 6:10pm

>188 RebaRelishesReading:
I don't know how to do the grab thing either. If that's any comfort.

Dic 9, 2019, 6:28pm

Thanks Benita -- makes me feel less ancient :)

Dic 9, 2019, 8:34pm

I wouldn't worry about the covers. The issue will likely be ongoing and given that different people use different operating systems and different browsers, trying to explain how to do it doesn't make much sense. Better to nag the powers that be to make it easier, but I think they have better things to do :)

Dic 10, 2019, 6:49pm

>191 katiekrug: I like that approach, Katie :)

Dic 10, 2019, 6:57pm

I spent my birthday-eve at the spa using up the last bit of last year's birthday present from hubby. A massage, a facial and an hour reading in the "relaxation room" -- heaven. Tonight I'm going to a chamber concert with bff. Really, days don't get much better than this!

Editado: Dic 11, 2019, 2:20am

>188 RebaRelishesReading:, >189 benitastrnad: - if you go to the Change Cover page, near the top (two or three down) there's a section with Upload my file on the left and Or grab one from the web on the right, with a field below grab. I believe it works pretty much like the grab in the photo gallery (I've never done that). But it's a quick way to get a cover image - usually a pretty small one, but better than nothing.

Dic 11, 2019, 4:35am

Reba, great news about passing your test! I hope you're putting it to good use by backing trailers around corners :-) And if yesterday was your birthday eve, then today is the day?

Happy birthday!

Dic 11, 2019, 8:51am

Happy Birthday, Reba!

How are you going to top your birthday-eve? That sounded pretty perfect :)

Dic 11, 2019, 11:39am

>194 jjmcgaffey: Thank you Jennifer, I'll see if I can remember to give that a try

>195 susanj67: Yes it is -- thank you Susan. As to backing trailers, I've never dreamed of doing that and hope I never will!

>196 katiekrug: Thank you, Katie. Plans for today are to meet friends for lunch and otherwise...maybe read?

Dic 11, 2019, 7:44pm

Happy, happy Reba and many more!

Dic 11, 2019, 8:18pm

Happy Birthday, Reba!!

Dic 12, 2019, 11:46am

Thank you Bonnie and Roni! It was a lovely day -- actually a lovely two days :)

Dic 13, 2019, 8:21pm

Dead Wake by Erik Larson*** (audio)

Mr. Larson goes into great detail about everything to do with the last crossing of the Lusitania from the various passengers who were aboard, cited plans for protection of the ship crossing the Atlantic during WWI, the German U-boat service, the captain of the boat that sank the Lusitania, survival, etc. It was actually quite interesting even if a bit more detailed than I probably would have preferred. The thing that will probably stick with me longest is the blame the British Admiralty (Winston Churchill) tried to place on the captain. Most interesting story there. Worth a read, especially if you're into 20th century sea warfare.

Dic 14, 2019, 11:37am

So today will be dedicated to baking and candy making. I give some as presents and keep some for the family who will be arriving next Thursday.

On the reading front, I seem to be stuck. I'm reading a book I don't enjoy much and finding everything else possible to do every time I sit down to read. If I wasn't so absurdly stubborn I would put it away to "finish later" or just reshelve it (it was my Dad's so don't want to get rid of it" and move on or at least put it aside to "finish later". I think I'm writing this to try to talk myself into doing that :)

Dic 14, 2019, 2:06pm

Dic 15, 2019, 11:09am

The Farm by Louis Bromfield**

Sorry, Katie, I got busy yesterday afternoon and finished it before I got your encouragement. I will admit that I skimmed it pretty lightly though.

The Farm describes family and small town life in Ohio for four generations from early settlement by European-Americans. It's beautifully written but there is no story line beyond the description and, beautifully written or not, 346 pages of description is too much for me.

Dic 18, 2019, 7:03pm

With a Daughter's Eye: A Memoir of Margaret Mead & Gregory Bateson by Mary Catherine Bateson***

The title describes the book completely. It was interesting to the extent that I took a number of anthropology courses in college and it provided an interesting picture of Margaret Mead as a person but it seemed a rather light-weight picture to have been written by a serious academic about two famous academics.

Dic 19, 2019, 2:34pm

Hello from sunny warm Germany! The Christmas Market adventure has started. I am here for one week visiting friends and shopping the markets with my sister and friends. It has been sunny and warm. Tomorrow a German friend joins us and I can say that I am looking forward to that. It has been fun so far with several interesting people met and the crowds at the Christmas Markets! So much fun.

Dic 19, 2019, 2:40pm

>206 benitastrnad: Have fun at the Christmas market! Don't forget to eat some roasted chestnuts and drink some Glühwein :)

Dic 19, 2019, 2:44pm

>207 figsfromthistle:
Had the chestnuts already and a sip or two of Gluhwein. Also ate some sausage and had one of those great German breakfasts! So far have not purchased anything from the market. Will do that this weekend.

Dic 19, 2019, 7:50pm

>202 RebaRelishesReading: I hope you are on to more captivating reading now, Reba. Candy making sounds like fun (but maybe I'm thinking of all the sampling I'd be doing.)

Dic 20, 2019, 10:58am

>206 benitastrnad: Glad you're having a good time, Benita!

>209 Familyhistorian: Hi Meg. I've started Red to the Bone so, yes, I'm am definitely on to more captivating reading :) and on to the distribution part of my cookie and candy making which is definitely fun.

Dic 20, 2019, 11:15am

Our holidays have definitely begun!! Teenage grandkids are staying with us while parents are at a nearby hotel. We had teppanyaki dinner last night which was delicious and fun. Today they're all at Disneyland. Tomorrow morning we will "do Christmas" with brunch and presents before they all go home again. Busy but fun.

Dic 20, 2019, 3:26pm

Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson****1/2

The book jacket describes this little book as "moving forward and backward in time, with the power of poetry and the emotional richness of a narrative ten times its length" which hits the nail on the head. It's the story of three generations of two African-American families and the choices they have made. It's lovely and poignant and well worth a read. Thank you Katie for the BB that led me here.

Dic 20, 2019, 3:57pm

>212 RebaRelishesReading: - You are most welcome :)

Dic 21, 2019, 3:06pm

>212 RebaRelishesReading: Ooh, I've got this one coming for me at the library soon. Great to see your nice review of it!

Karen O.

Dic 22, 2019, 11:28am

Son, d-i-l to-be, granddaughter and grandson were here for the weekend to celebrate Dec. b'days (me on the 11th, son on the 18th, granddaughter 17 on the 21st and hubby on the 26th) and Christmas. We had a great, if exhausting, time. Hadn't seen grandson (who will be 15 next month) since the spring and was shocked to find he's now 2 inches taller than me (and I'm not short), is starting to shave and has a voice that is starting to crack. Wasn't it last week when I was reading to him while he slowly woke up from his afternoon nap? Great kids and a fun time.

Editado: Dic 23, 2019, 11:12am

Places of Light: The Gift of Cathedrals to the World by Gernot Candolini and Jennifer Brandon****

First a disclaimer -- Jennifer Brandon is my cousin's wife. That said, this is a beautiful little book with stunning photos of 20 cathedrals around the world and with information about their history, architecture, symbolism, etc. It gave me wonderful memories from ones I have visited and added some to the list of places I want to visit.

Editado: Dic 22, 2019, 5:54pm

I think you have a backward caret at the beginning of your image coding, Reba.

Dic 23, 2019, 11:12am

>217 ronincats: You're right, I do. Thanks for catching that.

Dic 23, 2019, 2:51pm

Hope you have a wonderful Christmas!

Dic 23, 2019, 7:48pm

>219 ChelleBearss: Chelle -- so wonderful to see you!! Hope you have wonderful holidays too.

Dic 24, 2019, 2:20am

>211 RebaRelishesReading: Sounds very busy! Hope you have a lovely holiday season.

Dic 24, 2019, 6:48am

Happy Christmas, Reba and MrReba! Your weekend with the family sounded like fun. And yes, those young people grow up far too fast.

Dic 24, 2019, 11:06am

>221 charl08:, >222 susanj67: Happy holidays to you too, Charlotte and Susan!

Dic 24, 2019, 12:36pm

You started the holidays early, Reba. Sounds like fun. I bet you have something a bit more relaxing planned for the rest of the holidays. Enjoy!

Dic 24, 2019, 12:58pm

I'm pathetically behind on threads, Reba, but want to wish you a

Dic 24, 2019, 5:29pm

>224 Familyhistorian:, >225 karenmarie: Thank you Meg and Karen! I am having a lovely, quiet reading day today :) Hope you have wonderful holidays too.

Dic 25, 2019, 3:55pm

Merry Christmas from North Carolina!

Dic 25, 2019, 6:31pm

Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Solstice, some other tradition or none at all, this is what I wish for you!

Dic 25, 2019, 9:39pm

Thank you for keeping me company in 2019.......onward to 2020.

Dic 26, 2019, 2:07am

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

Dic 26, 2019, 12:48pm

Hi Reba! I'm dropping in to wish MrReba a very happy birthday :-)

Dic 26, 2019, 12:49pm

I just passed it on and he says "please tell her happy birthday from me".

Dic 26, 2019, 5:47pm

Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings by Joy Harjo

I wish I understood poetry and could enjoy it more. Ms. Harjo is the Poet Laureate so I'm sure she's a fine poet but I'm afraid it goes right over my head :(

Dic 27, 2019, 12:17am

Best wishes this holiday season!! See you in 2020!

Dic 27, 2019, 5:04am

>232 RebaRelishesReading: Thanks Reba! Boxing Day babies have to stick together with our poorly timed birthdays :-)

Dic 27, 2019, 7:34pm

It's An Old California Custom by Lee Shippey***

Although this book is about California I chose it from a Chautauqua list of books toward CLSC recognition. It was written in 1948 and placed on the list in 1951. As a Californian both by birth and by residence I got a big kick out of it. The author claims "it is an old California custom too...:
- ride forth seeking romance
- gamble on anything
- be grandiosely hospitable
- seek short cuts to heaven
- eat, drink and be merry
- search for gold
- engage in banditry
- speak in superlatives
- live out of doors
- tell tall tales
- deal in real estate
- believe what isn't true
- throw dignity out the window
- dress dramatically
- tackle the impossible

Using these as chapter headings he provides an entertaining look at California history and culture with which I could certainly identify.

Dic 28, 2019, 12:23pm

>212 RebaRelishesReading: My only complaint about this one, Reba, is that I would have liked a little more about Iris and her mother and their relationship. Woodson writes so beautifully.

>236 RebaRelishesReading: This looks entertaining.

I hope you're having a wonderful holiday season.

Dic 28, 2019, 6:54pm

>236 RebaRelishesReading: I love "throw dignity out the window." It's really over rated anyway lol. Happy New Year Reba!

Dic 29, 2019, 12:23pm

>237 BLBera: We are having a lovely, low-key holiday season. Thank you Beth. Hope you are too.

>238 brenzi: It was a fun read for a Californian. Happy new years to you too Bonnie!

Dic 29, 2019, 1:32pm

Why Old Places Matter: How Historic Places Affect Our Identity and Well-Being by Thompson M. Mayes ****

This was a Christmas gift from my BFF who knows me well. It's a beautiful book which discusses exactly what is promised by the title and concludes that in addition to having economic value:

Old places are deeply beneficial to people because of the way they give us a sense of continuity, identity and belonging; because they inspire us with awe, beauty, and sacredness; because they tell us about history, ancestry, and learning; and because they foster healthy, sustainable communities

Dic 29, 2019, 8:18pm

Sullivan's Island by Dorothea Benton Frank(audio) ***1/2

I had a little time this afternoon and spent it listening to the end of an audio book I started last week. Susan is the next-to-oldest of six children who is now mother of a daughter. The book deals with her failing marriage with flash backs to her dysfunctional home life on a barrier island off the Carolina coast. It was a fun listen for the last book of 2019.

Dic 31, 2019, 7:41am

Hi Reba!

My aunt is a Boxing Day baby, too, as is a book club friend's son.

>236 RebaRelishesReading: I'm a Californian by birth, and spent 34 of my 66 years there. Amusing.

Dic 31, 2019, 11:42am

>242 karenmarie: Hi Karen. You would probably find the book amusing too. What part of CA are you from?

Dic 31, 2019, 11:51am

We've been planning to go out to dinner with my BFF tonight and then come back here for a movie and champagne but I've come down with a nasty cold and I'm not sure she'll want to be exposed. Just texted her to see but it may be a very quiet night :(

With that cheery bit I'm planning to close this thread and take up the new year tomorrow.

Dic 31, 2019, 12:34pm

Sorry to hear the lurgy's got you, Reba. I hope you have a nice evening whatever you end up doing.

Happy New Year!

Dic 31, 2019, 10:27pm

Gotta reply to your question, Reba!

>243 RebaRelishesReading: SoCal. Born in Inglewood, raised in Hawthorne, moved to Diamond Bar when I was 13. Went to Pepperdine University when it was still at 81st and Vermont in LA, lived in Redondo Beach for the last year or so there, moved to Connecticut for 4 years, back to the Valley, Sunland, Glendale, and, finally, Tujunga before moving to North Carolina to marry Bill. That was 28 1/2 years ago.

Ene 1, 2020, 12:56pm

>240 RebaRelishesReading:

That one sounds very interesting. Just came from old places and found them interesting.

Ene 1, 2020, 1:43pm

OMG!! Sunland/Tujunga?!? I lived there from birth to college! Went to Pinewood Elementary, Mt. Gleason Jr. Hi and Verdugo Hills H.S. Some times it's a very small world!