Wordcraft Home Page    Wordcraft Community Home Page    Forums  Hop To Forum Categories  WoBoGro    What Are You Reading Right Now?
Page 1 2 3 4 5 6 
Go
New
Find
Notify
Tools
Reply
  
What Are You Reading Right Now? Login/Join
 
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
The neighbor behind me owns a teeny strip on our border, right behind his garage, where he planted a row of bamboo Eek I was nonplussed, but he assured me it was a special low-& slow-growing variety. (He was doing it to stop the English Ivy on my side in its tracks-- having spent yrs once upon a time trying to thwart the pest, I'd given up). This strange variety true to its blurb is only about 2.5ft hi after 3 yrs, stays in its lane, & is winter-hardy like a nice little evergreen hedge.
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
I highly recommend my book club's next selection, too. It's a memoir [written at age 29!] by Tara Westwood, called "Educated." She was raised in a remote corner of Idaho by parents whose personal & idiosyncratic brand of Mormonism included absolutely zero truck w/govt including doctors/ medicine, & even birth certificates. It is a hair-raising story yet told with clear eyes and empathy.
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
How many of you are re-reading plague-themed books right now? The Decameron, La Peste, Love in the Time of Cholera, etc... Somehow I bet they're popular!
 
Posts: 5329 | Location: Muncie, IndianaReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
At our [abortive, google-please-hang-me] April book club mtg, the host's 4 recommendations included 2 on plague/ influenza themes, 1 on a nunnery experience, & a debut mystery novel. We chose the mystery: nunnery runner-up, zero votes for the others.

I FB w/a former-librarian cuz whose book club lurched between March & April from a comprehensive bio of a female spy to... another mystery debut! Big Grin
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of Kalleh
posted Hide Post
Has anyone read Anne Tyler's new book? As I've written here, I love her writing and was ecstatic when I found she has a new book out. Can't wait to read it!
 
Posts: 24279 | Location: Chicago, USAReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
--
Gosh I hate to dominate a thread. What are YOU reading?

Kalleh, have you ordered/ started reading the new Ann Tyler yet? I'll stand by to see what you think. Have to say I was turned off by her '70's novels tho I can't quite remember why... I vaguely remember a sort-of downbeat perspective, characters I found it hard to relate to, & plots that went nowhere. However I'm sure I read one in the 90's that I liked.

Right now I'm having a gas w/current book club selection, Cousin Bette by Balzac [1840]. A friend & I are reading it in the original French & "zoom"ing 2-3x/ wk to go over the bumpy parts. She's also perusing an Eng transl by Kathleen Reine [late 1940's copyright]. I HIGHLY recommend (any translation)! This was an interesting French era: 10 yrs after the Restoration ended; bourgeoisie was flowering & beginning to dominate the Parisian scene, much to Balzac's [monarchist] chagrin.

Balzac is rich, multi-layered, & just too funny at skewering all the pretentious types-- the Napoleonic hangers-on who got their govtl positions & "aristocratic" titles as rewards for military exploits; parvenus & arrivistes (mostly former small shop-owners & purveyors) pepper the scene w/gaudy interiors & the equivalent of today's McMansions. Lots of shrewd psychological analysis & startlingly realistic details, including $s, cts, & fin details on hair-raising transactions.
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
I'm planning to read the new biography of Cecilia Paine-Gaposchkin when it arrives - she was my professor af Astronomy-1 when I was a college freshman a million years ago. (She certain didn't look like her cover photo, either, not even then...)
 
Posts: 5954 | Location: Worcester, MA, USReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by haberdasher:
(She certain didn't look like her cover photo, either, not even then...)
Better or worse? A star astronomer regardless.

I wonder what gasses politicians are composed of?
 
Posts: 5329 | Location: Muncie, IndianaReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
I was 17 then. She looked like a grandmother with her white hair in a bun.

Meantime, having finished 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and Robinson Crusoe and Swiss Family Robinson, I just started The Three Musketeers.

If this keeps up too much longer I might even get to reading Charles Dickens.
 
Posts: 5954 | Location: Worcester, MA, USReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
Just seventeen?? Wow, you musta been a child progeny!

I've got my nose stuck in Victor, Vodka and Raw Fish, a poorly written book recounting the author's flight across the old Soviet Union with a Russian friend. A Tale of Two Cities it's not, but it does recount "the best of times, the worst of times."
 
Posts: 5329 | Location: Muncie, IndianaReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of Kalleh
posted Hide Post
Poorly written? Not sure I'd finish it.

Anne Tyler just released another book, "Redhead by the Side of the Road." I love the way she makes her very mundane characters come to life. It was an easy read, humorous, and perfect for these trying times.
 
Posts: 24279 | Location: Chicago, USAReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of BobHale
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Kalleh:
Poorly written? Not sure I'd finish it.

Anne Tyler just released another book, "Redhead by the Side of the Road." I love the way she makes her very mundane characters come to life. It was an easy read, humorous, and perfect for these trying times.


One man's "poorly written" is another man's "stylistically quirky". As I haven't read it I couldn't say which side of the fence I'd sit.
 
Posts: 8563 | Location: EnglandReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of Kalleh
posted Hide Post
Yes, I suppose you are right. That's why one person loves a book, while someone else hates it. I happen to love WW2 stories, but others find them too dark. They can be, yes, but there is usually some bright spots in them too.

I tend to feel guilty if I start a book and don't finish it. So if I don't like it, I struggle through it. But I wonder if that is a good idea.
 
Posts: 24279 | Location: Chicago, USAReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by haberdasher:

Meantime, having finished 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and Robinson Crusoe and Swiss Family Robinson, I just started The Three Musketeers.

If this keeps up too much longer I might even get to reading Charles Dickens.

Wow hab I'm impressed! Have you read "Kidnapped"(Stevenson)? I have a gorgeous 1st ed Simon & Schuster w/NCWyeth color plates I used to read bits of to my boys. Have many other beauties collected because of art interest/ illustrations: have to admit the only ones I've read thro (multiple times) are the Oz books, Beatrix Potter, Thornton Burgess. But Dickens (& Hugo & Balzac) are a step up & love them sans illustrations...
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
One doesn't realize just how much a good illustrator can enhance your reading experience. Case in point is Moby Dick, with (and without) drawings by Rockwell Kent. Even though the illustrated version may be 900 pages and the "standard" edition 500, the bigger book is amazingly easier to immerse yourself in and read faster.
 
Posts: 5954 | Location: Worcester, MA, USReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of BobHale
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by bethree5:
the only ones I've read thro (multiple times) are the Oz books,


Just the L Frank Baum or the Ruth Plumly Thompson too? I have all of them by both authors except for a couple of the Thompson ones which are really really difficult to get. I also have a dozen or so by other later authors.
 
Posts: 8563 | Location: EnglandReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of BobHale
posted Hide Post
And on the subject of illustrators...

Start here and scroll through my old blog.

Just keep clicking Newer Posts until you get to the end of the story. Enjoy.

I have spent the last hour and a half looking through it all myself and a well-spent time it was too. One thing to ask, many of the Alice posts, and many of the other posts too, ask for information about the illustrators or ask questions that I never found answers for. If any of you want something to do while in lockdown please feel free to try to answer any of them."

This message has been edited. Last edited by: BobHale,
 
Posts: 8563 | Location: EnglandReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by BobHale:
quote:
Originally posted by bethree5:
the only ones I've read thro (multiple times) are the Oz books,


Just the L Frank Baum or the Ruth Plumly Thompson too? I have all of them by both authors except for a couple of the Thompson ones which are really really difficult to get. I also have a dozen or so by other later authors.

Oh yes Bob, the Ruth Plumly Thompson too! So glad to meet another fan! My earlist editions are ragged, in some cases even missing one of covers, but have those beautiful early color plates protected by vellum, & [most importantly] pencilled signatures by great-uncles when children before 1920... My mother kept adding to my [/her] collection, so I also have many of those white-backgrounded-covered editions from '50's. I re-read them many times throughout my childhood, & John R Neill is one of my faves of 20thC children's-book illustrators, along with Beatrix Potter, Harrison Cady, the whole Brandywine School.. Maxfield Parrish.. the Wyeths.. & other lesser-knowns & European illustrators.
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
I highly recommend my current book-club read, "Girl Returned" by Donatella Di Pietrantonio, "pitch-perfect translation by Ann Goldstein, Elena Ferrante's translator." A short read at 176pp; prose is terrific, the "show-don't-tell" variety. It's a year in the life of a girl in early teens raised in a comfortable coastal Abruzzo life, suddenly & inexplicably "returned" to her "real" [poor, mountain village] family (learning only then that her 'parents' were actually a distant female cousin of her father, & that woman's husband). Told in simple daily moments - no commentary - marking the building of new relationships, the gradual collection of info leading to understanding what happened. Truly remarkable as a debut novel.

But here's the exciting part for me!!: through another zoom collaboration, I am LEARNING ITALIAN with this book. Again thro bkcb members, this time a 3-way.

My collaborator on "La Cousine Bette" (see above) has mid-level Italian skills without having studied it much. She's a retired ESL teacher fairly fluent in Spanish, w/hisch French. She started her teaching career as a yr-long sub for a teacher of Spanish and Italian, during teacher shortage in Boston (1st yr of school desegregation), so she had to study up on it. But her money connection: she was born in Greece [moved here at age 5], & over the yrs often visited elderly relatives back there. Because her Greek-speaking ability is negligible, they always communicated via Ladino-sprinkled Italian.

Our 3rd was born in a poor Abruzzese mountain village like the one in the novel - family moved to S Africa early on, then NYC when she was in teens. Italian was spoken at home. She has maintained strong fluency because her Mom moved back to Abruzzo when kids were grown & my friend spends weeks there annually [mom now in 90's].

So our Italian-American friend - not a grammarian, but full of cultural info - simply reads aloud to us two teachers. We pepper her w/questions & piece it together. In just 4 sessions I've got a 1st/2nd-yr grasp of the grammar, & have almost mastered the pronunciation. [Now we're beginning to read text aloud to her, for her correction.]

It will take some serious study to begin to actually express myself in Italian, but I think I'm on my way...
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
Wow, Bethree5, I'm impressed!

I'll see if I can find that book.
Update: Got it, and am impressed with her descriptive language. I'm a bit confused by the vignette-like chapters which occasionally lose me, but it's an impressive generator of tension, melancholy, and, somehow, hope. So far, mostly, so good.

PS: Bethree5, does this make sense? On page 63 it says, "I didn't use to do that." That really grates on my sense of grammatical propriety. Did the translator goof?

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Geoff,
 
Posts: 5329 | Location: Muncie, IndianaReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
quote:
La Cousine Bette

Ooops! I thought you said, "La Cuisine Béte" so I ate a steak. I'm now reading an old history of the Civil War, and bits of Freud's Cilivlization and Its Discontents.
 
Posts: 5329 | Location: Muncie, IndianaReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of Kalleh
posted Hide Post
My daughters and I are reading some books on race relations. Currently, I am reading "So You Want to Talk about Race" by Ijeoma Oluo. It is an easy read and has really made me think differently about racism.
 
Posts: 24279 | Location: Chicago, USAReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of BobHale
posted Hide Post
Reading is just one of the many things I am having trouble getting enthused about I am occasionally dipping in and out of a complete Sonnets and Poems of Shakespeare which, rather unusually, includes the various things attributed to him later but of dubious provenance. I also have the Anchor Book of Chinese Poetry that I look at now and then.
I am reading Wind In The Willows with my private student but that's not really reading as such. A few paragraphs per lesson with some discussion of the new vocabulary for her. I have a few books a departing colleague left behind but none of them particularly appeal.
So I suppose the main thing I am reading is a large collection of Doctor Who comics I downloaded.
 
Posts: 8563 | Location: EnglandReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
I'm into classics and thrillers. Just finished The Last of the Mohicans. I'm afraid I read it too fast, and I have to go back and do some parts over again.

Then I picked up a David Baldacci potboiler - which one doesn't matter, 'cuz they're mostly interchangeable. Eventually I'll get to the latest Daniel Silva volume, featuring the illustrious Gabriel Allon, the Israeli artiist/restorer/superspy with the high pain threshold.
 
Posts: 5954 | Location: Worcester, MA, USReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
quote:
The Last of the Mohicans. I'm afraid I read it too fast, and I have to go back and do some parts over again.


Dyslexia, not speed, made me sh
slow down on that one. I initially expected it to be about an Irish Cobbler. "The Last of Mo Higgins."

I've just begun to read "These Truths" by Jill Lepore. THAT WOMAN CAN WRITE!!! She seems to be as much poet as historian. Now if I can just get through this tome before it's due at the library...

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Geoff,
 
Posts: 5329 | Location: Muncie, IndianaReply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by BobHale:
Reading is just one of the many things I am having trouble getting enthused about... the main thing I am reading is a large collection of Doctor Who comics I downloaded.


Big Grin You're honest to a fault. I have returned to my childhood bookworm habits on vacation - stuffing myself non-stop with what a friend calls "book-candy." All Scandinavian noir all the time. We brought cartons of it. Our dinner conversation consists of comparing plot-driven vs character-driven series, which ones have the best scenery, most camaraderie among the cops, etc.
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by haberdasher:
.. the Israeli artiist/restorer/superspy with the high pain threshold.
Ugh I hate torture. Unfortunately it shows up now & then even in Scan noir (those happy people! who have a crime rate of next to zero!) I just squint and skim through those parts.
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of bethree5
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by Kalleh:
My daughters and I are reading some books on race relations. Currently, I am reading "So You Want to Talk about Race" by Ijeoma Oluo. It is an easy read and has really made me think differently about racism.


Hi, Kalleh. Have you read Wilkerson's "The Warmth of Other Suns?" It's about the great northern migration. A wonderful read.

It's hard to find a book that really puts you in the other person's shoes when it comes to racism. I found that with "The Sellout" by Paul Beatty. Bonus: it is often hilarious.
 
Posts: 2381 | Location: As they say at 101.5FM: Not New York... Not Philadelphia... PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY!Reply With QuoteReport This Post
  Powered by Social Strata Page 1 2 3 4 5 6  
 

Wordcraft Home Page    Wordcraft Community Home Page    Forums  Hop To Forum Categories  WoBoGro    What Are You Reading Right Now?

Copyright © 2002-12