Cammykitty's 75 books challenge 2015
Afegeix-te a LibraryThing per participar.
Aquest tema està marcat com "inactiu"—L'últim missatge és de fa més de 90 dies. Podeu revifar-lo enviant una resposta.
Have a lost you yet?
You'll see Sage & Wanda, my two Irish Water Spaniels, over here.
Sage is the one near me on the long line. He's a fence jumper! And so chicken he doesn't know what to do once he's on the other side of the fence. He usually will come to a gate and whine because he certainly couldn't just jump back in.
and lots of books. This year, I've put in many panel discussions at Diversicon, a science fiction & fantasy convention I attend every year, so a lot of my reading will be focused to prepare for that. Around July, you'll either see me panic or sigh with relief, depending on how many of the panel ideas are going to fly.
No ticker here. I didn't quite make it to 75 last year and want to hide the possibility that I won't make it this year.
>1 cammykitty: Love this photo of the kids and the strategically hidden face. :-)
The book was a fast-paced, foul-mouthed romantic fantasy with two groups of villains, the villains with hearts of gold and the villains who were so bad it was okay to kill them. The book had a message about fate/chaos too, but I don't think the message holds up to close scrutiny.
I quit reading Altered Carbon years ago because it was set in a world where bodies were disposable so the violence was unlimited.
I've read Dhalgren and Tropic of Cancer and The Well of Loneliness. It takes a lot of sex, and weird sex, before I'm "completely" uncomfortable.
I've also quit reading books because they were too technical, too slow paced or too difficult linguistically (especially if in Spanish).
I've read a fair amount of experimental fiction. Yes, I read The Sound and the Fury. That doesn't make me uncomfortable. Perhaps bored, but not uncomfortable.
I'm slightly suspicious that The Windup Girl might work for this category. Any suggestions for possible candidates? What sort of ideas/subject matter puts you out of your comfort zone? But still in a way that makes it worth persevering.
>24 cammykitty: Regarding Elizabeth: The Struggle For the Throne, I read this years ago. David Starkey is fine writer and historian. My love of Tudor history dates way back to college days when a history professor loved Elizabeth I, and his love was infectious.
Linda, thanks! Good to remind myself about what it's like to play with the dogs when it is warm outside! & good to know Elizabeth: The Struggle for the Throne is pretty good. It didn't really look like it belonged with my unsuggestions. I may use it though, even though reading English history isn't outside my comfort zone. Genocide histories, sometimes. Monarchies, that's a kind of bloody I can handle.
Here is the link http://www.librarything.com/topic/185185
It's not a challenge, just a personal project that has turned into a huge shared read. Pop in and out as you please and comments are certainly most welcome.
What sort of ideas/subject matter puts you out of your comfort zone? I think romance, westerns, and YA are the main ones, although I sometimes end up reading YA for various reasons, but it's rare. I guess those were genres, rather than ideas though.
Okay Rhonda, but I'd almost talked myself into reading Zane Grey. So you think hardened little me will "get" the humor in Shopaholic and Baby."
Terry! Hi! Are you doing the category challenge too this year? I don't think I've seen you over there, but I'm kind of struggling to find my feet and keep up this year. Isn't everyone?
Dors - Yes! There is an unsuggester. Go to the recommendations tab and it's the last thing listed in the left column. It's usually pretty scary, although once in awhile it has books on it that I've read and liked. Marley and Me? Why wouldn't I read that book - unless the LT stats computer thinks I can't handle a dog dying in the end - which I nearly can't. I agree on the Romance and Westerns! YA, there's such a variety in it, but I can see why always reading about a teen protag could get annoying!
For those of you who haven't heard of Blacksad before, it's Kitty Noir from Spain set in the US, usually New Orleans. The art is watercolor, painstakingly done. He uses photos from the time period to get his settings down.
And here's our hero. Stylin'
Laura, thanks! They just got to finish off my chicken soup, so they think it's a good year so far.
Berly, do check the "Unsuggestor" out. I'd found it years ago, and then I think they got rid of it for awhile. If so, back by popular demand. On the home screen, there is that line of blue words at the top "Home Profile Connections Recommendations" etc. Click on recommendations. Then on the left side there's a column that says "Library Thing Recommendations, Read-Alikes for Berly" etc. If you go to the last thing on that list, it's the Unsuggestor. Let us know if you got Shopaholic too. ;)
Anyway, happy weekend Katie!
@47 Yup, Berly. LT thinks I wouldn't be able to stand the Purpose-Driven anything. They're probably right. I've got a bit of the anarchist in me. Not total anarchy, but enough where I sometimes feel myself becoming one of the students rather than the staff at the middle school I work at. And I don't mean the good students. ;)
@48 Dors, I'm sure you've heard about Blacksad from me before although I'm far from the only fan on LT. Guy looks good on a bike, doesn't he. Sadly, he's usually in search of reliable transportation.
I won't say much about Coldest since I'll be discussing it this weekend except it is Holly Black's latest, and like most of her work, it pushes the envelope for what adults think teens are able to handle. Hah! They handle vampires munching up bus loads of teens better than we adults do! From a writer's standpoint, I have to admire Black because every bit of information we need planted before it's really used is in fact planted. Yet, it isn't telegraphed. The novel still has lots of unexpected twists and turns. As for the vampire romance angle, even that is planted ahead of time. We meet Tana's previous boyfriend and he's no prize, so a vampire? That's an improvement.
I'll agree with that. Plot is that anthropologists from Earth meet furry aliens on another planet. In the furry society, men become solitary at adolescence and are generally regarded as bad-tempered. I should have known what I was getting into. I believe this is Eleanor's first novel, and Eleanor has always been far more interested in the social and political workings of an overall society than in what happens to who when. It is the perfect book for someone who likes to get lost in world-building. For me, I wanted some of that day to day stuff on the chopping room floor. It was a chore to complete it. Sorry, Eleanor.
And for a laugh, here's one of the novel covers.
I have no idea where all the well-washed and moussed hair, the skull and the sexy purple leather clothes came from. Eleanor's description of Lixia was hard-working, grubby because she was in the field, and wearing a borrowed native tunic.
Bingo Dog 12, a book with scientists.
(Bruce's evil twin :-))
Di - as outside of my comfort zone? I think not. Read plenty of time travel, but I think Gabaldon is the one that one of my friends threw across the room because the romantic couple were in a chase for their lives but still found time to stop behind a bit of heather for a quickie. I think I'd get in trouble for reading that one. ;)
Donna, I just went to the page for American Salvage and the first line in the first review said These short stories left me feeling a bit eerie and melancholy, as I suppose they were intended to do. Sounds like it may be a collection with a deliberate ick factor??? And it might actually be good. It's a possiblity, which makes me think of Gabriel Garcia Marquez's The Golden Cock which may be a short story??? It's about cock fighting, which has been big in Latin American countries and it shows up often enough in their movies. I've tried watching that movie a couple times and can't do it, and the fight scenes aren't even that graphic. There's always Coetzee's Disgrace. That story deliberately challenges everyone's comfort zone. If the main character doesn't get you in the first few pages, don't worry. Something else in that novel will get to you. It's a brilliant, but unpleasant, book.
So sick person "reading" A toZ Mysteries L-K. Ya know, these must be popular with kids but I've never seen anyone in the middle school reading them. When I worked at Borders, we carried all of them. I found them annoying except for the Basset Hound. The world needs more Basset Hounds.
And bingo # 16, a book with a mythical creature = The Mark of the Dragonfly I underestimated this one and was impatient with it early on. I figured it was a version of fantasy plot #1, Return of the rightful heir - but like Tolkein, it was going to take at least three books to do it. Nope. It's not that. It's a meandering little steampunkish novel about finding family in a capitalist/monarchist world that crushes people into slaves for the sake of technology. And it had a cute little romance in it with no sucking of blood. The mythical creature was a shape shifter, not a blood sucker. Cross-species romance is so much more convincing when one of the partners isn't also a prey animal.
Anne, so glad to know A to Z Mysteries are closer to the bottom of the barrel than the top. I mean, what American children's writer names a kid "Dink" to rhyme with "think" unless they want the novel to be a tragedy that ends in suicide. 3rd grade suicide! And of course these are audio books, and the reader made everything the girl said sound petulant. And some of the clues! Geeze Louise, talk about circumstantial! Some of the mysteries are better than others, but really, kid's series shouldn't be inconsistent in quality. Adults, we can take it. Kids... well, maybe they can take it or maybe it just turns them off reading.
Donna - the very end was what really got me in Disgrace. Of course, I didn't like the main character. It was pretty hard to like him, but I was
As for me, I've got three dogs keeping me company now. Di (alias Bruce Krafft) has loaned me her little Gracie as a cuddle companion while she shops for rugs in the streets of Istanbul. I'm going to be bold and try a little cooked veggies with my rice today!!! The bonito flakes from Oriental Noodle were smoked and just seemed gross today. I'm wondering if it is a sign that I'm sick or perhaps they are just kind of blechy.
As for third grade reading, last night I listened to Henry Huggins. Sure, it was a different life back then when Cleary was writing and all the prices have to be multiplied by ten, but some things stay the same. Henry Huggins was her first sold novel, and she talks about the boys being sent to the library because they were squirrelly and the teachers/parents hoped that she as librarian could do something with them but she found very few books about boys just like them. So she wrote down their stories. And a lot of the stories are pretty universal - wanting to have a dog, losing a friend's super something expensive, getting guppies - yup, we all know what guppies do. Dink in the A to Z Mysteries has a cell phone, but Henry's life is much closer and probably more interesting to the diverse boys I know. I really enjoyed it. Of course I read a lot of Cleary as a kid, but other than Runaway Ralph, I'd forgotten how good it was. I remember Ribsy being my favorite though. Bingo #3, a book that reminds me of my childhood - of course. But John Stenjham had the guppies that bred! Our fish always ate the babies.
Banjo - I'd love to see that fountain for her! It does sound very like Portland, and a nice safe suburban life where dogs could run down the street carrying their weeks worth of horse meat in their mouth. That time is gone! Not that you can ever trust a dog to carry it's own dinner home.
Roni - migraines! ick! That's one thing, knock on wood, I've never had and never want to have! Actually, I find ERs kind of interesting people watching - well when there's nothing too traumatic going on.
Amber - lucky Charlie!!! I downloaded all the Henry & Ribsy books, but now I feel like I shouldn't gulp them down without coming up for air. Besides, today I'm well enough to actually read my books to myself which means my Early Review novel, not to be confused with Emergency Room novel - about the kingship in Thailand, and almost equally sensationalist, James Tiptree, Jr.: The Double Life of Alice B. Sheldon.
I'll start off by saying I don't have much background knowledge on Thailand, just what I know from speaking to Hmong- and Thai-Americans, from reading a biography or two and from researching the ghost Mae Nak. I knew that the Thai language had a special "case" to be used in royalty. One man I met was left with royalty as a child while his parents were out of the country. He found it easier to pretend he didn't speak Thai than to deal with the special version of the language to be spoken around royalty. That said, I'm not a fact checker but what Marshall describes in A Kingdom in Crisis sounds perfectly plausible. He describes a monarchy challenged by two things: the call of the people to democratize and the succession of the crown. He describes Thailand as an oligarchy run by old families, some of which just recently gave up the harems, that are fighting to keep power in a world where the "peasants" are educated and the internet circumvents the governments control of the media. If Orwell and been interested in monarchies instead of communist states, this is the kind of world he would have depicted in his fiction.
Here is a picture of the fountain! It's great for little kids especially in hot weather. (the figures are Henry, Ramona and Ribsy)
I glad to hear you're feeling better, Katie! That sounded nasty!
I'm so glad you are feeling better!
I made it through school today! Had to carry soda crackers with me, and one of the kids had to pick on me for "not sharing." & it was during an m&m lab where they count the different colors and then eat the m&ms. !!! I'm sure he wouldn't have traded the m&ms for the crackers.
As for the book, it is read by a male, Neil Patrick Harris, and Ramona is a pest, but when you hear this obviously adult male voice imitating that of a whiny toddler. Oh, she's really annoying! Funny.
& what do you think was on my table when I got home today? A package, with yes of course, a book in it! My Spanish edition of Blacksad: Arctic Nation. It had a sticker in Spanish on it that indicated it was the 9th edition. Obviously way more popular in Europe than over here.
& yes, Neil Patrick Harris does a great job. Rhonda & Amber, I hope your library has it. It's all the Henry Huggins books together.
Dors & Banjo - Dhalgren didn't scar me for life! It's just one of those books that is so long and so you know Delaney - intellectual while in the gutter - that you get bragging rights once you've finished it. It's kind of goofy '60s free love and frankly, you could summarize it this way. You can do all the kinky, weird stuff you can imagine and no one cares, but the minute a black man has sex with a blonde girl the world falls apart.
Lori - Thanks! I'm getting there. I'm in that awkward stage where I'm feeling a bit week and adding foods back into my diet too slowly for my liking. But once in awhile, one of the foods isn't a great idea.
(Bruce's evil twin :-))
Di, I was thinking for my birthday, but hey, any excuse. Certainly if that's what you want. Ginkgo Coffee House carries Muddy Paws Bakery cheesecake. Beats the @$%* out of Cheesecake Factory cheesecake.
That is the impression I have been left with by each Bolano book I have read.
Congrats on the problem solving coaching!
So, our next topic is "Enhancing Human Potential," otherwise known as Transhumanism in some circles. Any reading suggestions for precocious 6th graders? I'm thinking Feed, any Cordwainer Smith, The Speed of Dark which is about a company that is paying to have their employees who have Autism take a treatment that will make them neurotypically normal, and Flowers for Algernon.
And speaking of Future Problem Solving, last night I finished reading a little e-book (#18) by a pen name Mike Beachem who is a psychiatrist, a front for a Transhumanist organization, and also no one particular person. So how can he be a psychiatrist? Part of him is one? I don't know. Anyway, the book is called Transformative Transhumanism and it would work well as a future scene document. I can see lots of problems in this one. It outlines the Transhumanist philosophy, which for some people is a religion. It states that people are adaptable and have adapted to live in almost every environment, and it is our duty to continue in this, to the poles, the deserts, mars and beyond. So, I'm imagining humans traveling as a swarm of locusts. I'll agree with the adaptable and need to keep adapting statement, but the Manifest Destiny part of this makes me really nervous.
Also, there was a section about the soul, which they do not believe in, and the personality which they do. The personality is something that outlives the body (so it is different from the soul how?) and people can have multiple ones. They develop multiple ones from trauma such as childhood sexual abuse. (Okay, that you can verify with the DSM.) Then they go on to say that it isn't a disorder, it is just a way some people are and that it is misguided of us to think that these people with multiple personalities need treatment. ???Huh??? Multiple Personality Disorder is pretty rare, but from what I've heard, once the initial trauma is gone it is pretty maladaptive and difficult to live with untreated. For all I know, the treatment is no joyride either - but nothing wrong with it??? They weren't talking Tiptree/Sheldon personality splits here. They were talking about people with a Hyde personality that they had to imagine in chains in order to cope.
So, this book comes quite dis-recommended. Hopefully I can find/have time for a Transhumanist book that is a little more grounded in science.
Banjo, thanks! I don't think they are quite "getting" transhumanism but I read them the passage of people being adaptable and it was our job to adapt, explore the universe and then deal with the possible aliens as we see fit. I'm sure they made the connection to westward expansion and the Native Americans without me even mentioning it.
Book 20 was The Perks of Being a Wallflower which is about being a loner growing up in the '80s. Very well-done, meandering plot about sex and friendships which comes to an odd, but not completely unexpected conclusion. It rang true to me. And it fits Bingo 6, although we never do find out who he is writing too.
Perks is good, isn't it. It's kind of a sleeper and then hits you on the head. & as for Bingo, looks like I'm going for a black out!
Here's one villain, el zorro Huk.
And also finished Red Equinox, my ER novel. Bingo Dog #22, fiction inspired by other fiction. I wanted to like this, but so did not care. Perhaps I'm going through a book funk and it's my fault, but I think it's more likely a fault in the novel combined with not a good match. It's a "Lovecraft" novel and I don't like Lovecraft. Too purple. I thought that I would like something set in his mythos though, and I would, but not this book. Egyptian scarabs, mad reincarnations of pharoahs and squidgy aquatic monsters are all up my alley, but something was missing from this novel. The main character didn't seem to have much emotional connection to the chaos around her, so I didn't either. I read it with more detachment than I would have watching an old Godzilla movie while munching on some buttery popcorn.
Rachel & Morphy! Glad it's not just me.
And maybe "wimpy wimpy wimpy" "hefty hefty hefty" but not really wishy-washy. :)
Di, I'll hand off Thailand and when you're done with that, I should be ready to hand off The Upstairs Wife too. As for the girl who speaks no English, she's starting to speak a little and her classwork is beginning to put some of the English-speaking students to shame.
#and next next Ghoulish Song by William Alexander was a fun twist on the musical instrument made from a human bone tale. A girl does a favor for some goblins and is rewarded with a bone flute, but the music of the flute separates her from her shadow - which in her culture means she must be dead. Never mind she is still talking and breathing, she must be dead. The story gets weirder after that.
(Bruce's evil twin :-))
Sorry you were having meds troubles. My youngest daughter (13) had to start taking prednisone while she is being tested for some kind of arthritis. The side effects can be scary -- fortunately her dose decreases little by little. Hope she won't have to take it long.
Kids absolutely love The Series of Unfortunate Events, but All the Wrong Questions hasn't taken off in my library. I need to read at least the first of the Questions series.
Have fun solving future problems...!
I'm still reading the Series of Unfortunate Events. I'm on the Ersatz Elevator right now. The Beaudelaire orphans are stuck in the elevator at the moment, if you know what I mean.
I've been super busy, sick and a bit on the crabby side lately so haven't kept up-to-date on my thread. In the meantime, I've read The Austere Academy where the orphans make some orphan friends, When did you see her last where Lemony gets in trouble for pestering the police, Crandall's Castle in which a family decides to turn a haunted house into a bed and breakfast. I'm still reading Ammonite but it's been slow going because The Series of Unfortunate Events keeps calling my name louder. I'm still sick, but on spring break now, so things should get better.
As for Future Problems, we are done for the season. They did a decent job at state, and did not embarrass me. Some of the teams there certainly embarrassed their coaches. One team had a solution involving flying monkeys and another team had one involving screeching hamsters. Two teams from our school district will be going on to internationals, one 4th grade team and one 5th grade team so the twin brother of one of the girls has been teasing her about being beaten out by 4th graders, but she doesn't care. She's actually excited for the 4th graders.
Have a great spring break! Feel better soon.
Roni: I'm getting there!
I finished reading Ammonite and had kind of a meh reaction and wondering why. The theme and plot etc were all good. The pacing was just too slow. Not as good as Slow River from a pacing point of view. In Ammonite, Marghe goes to a planet to test out a vaccine for the virus that kills all the men who have landed on the planet and changes the women who survive. They can have babies with women. That's just a small portion of the plot. What makes the book is the different cultures that have sprung up on the planet. And of course it works for Bingo, a GLBT main character - Heck, the whole planet was lesbian.
And on audio, I read Gordon Korman's The Memory Maze. It was fun, just as Korman usually is, but not terribly funny. In it, Jacks is double heir of two families that have the power of hypnotism. He can even hypnotize over the internet, which means people with more power than he has want him as a weapon.
I've finished "reading" Alchemy and Meggy Swann by Karen Cushman. As is true with all of her novels, it was interesting from a history point-of-view. I learned something about ballads I should have known, but didn't. At one time, they were a common way to tell the news. The story, I almost didn't finish. At first, Meggy is a sharp-tongued harpy that deserves half of what comes her way. I got tired of that, but stuck with it because I've loved some of Cushman's novels and trusted her as a writer. I'm glad I did because the sharpness soon lost its sting and became funny.
For real books, I'm still reading The Upstairs Wife which is quite interesting and a fast read compared to Ammonite and Feeling Outnumbered which is a training book for people who own more than one dog. Right now, Sage and I are feeling lonely. Wanda is visiting the Convent for Wayward Grrls. We miss her, but Sage is going to have a new set of trained behaviors (ha ha) before she comes back.
Been a bit moody lately, and also ran over my wifi plan. ???? When I first got wifi, I used about 1 GB a month. Now I'm over 10??? Huh? Anyway, excuses for not being here much. Besides, not reading much. I've finished Feeling Outnumbered which is how to train/handle more than one resident dogs. I have this weird feeling I've read it before? Not too much new. Just made me resolve to do a better job training/handling my own pack. Wanda is now registered for an intermediate obedience class.
Also read Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things which was kind of a cute story about a boy who is left behind when his actor parents sail off to open a theater for a maharaja who doesn't exist. It's about achieving independence, and finding lost things of course. Although some things remain lost.
Anyway, the book was interesting and beautifully done. It's just the dissatisfaction of the main lives of the memoir made me feel dissatisfied too.
Banjo - I saw your review too. I think we kind of agree. Yes, it was similar and terribly complicated. Wife #2 was Catholic and wouldn't hear of him divorcing #1 so he was constantly "staying late at work." Even I figured out what that meant, though.
(Bruce's evil twin :-))
And in the news today, I forgot to check the lock on the freezer this morning when I left! When I came home, one water spaniel greeted me at the door, and one waited to see if it was safe before he greeted me. Why? Because he had ice cream on his face. How? He broke into the freezer. They also ate 1 bag potstickers, 2 bags frozen mixed vegetables, 1/2 bag samosas, 1 tray meat of some kind. Couldn't tel what kind, because they ate the label too. No dinner tonight for those two!
As for reading, I actually finished one. Space is the Place a biography of Sun Ra. Sun Ra was a jazz musician who claimed to be born on Saturn, so much so that the passport people gave in and let his birthplace be Saturn. I think he was eccentric, not insane. If he was insane, he held it together a lot better than other insane jazz musicians did. Monk's end of life was tragic with mental illness. This bio was interesting because Sun Ra wasn't a Duke Ellington or a Coltrane. He was a working musician without much aptitude for making money but he managed to keep a band going, and his band almost looked like a cult. Quite interesting to see how they managed or failed to make ends meet.
Thanks for stopping in Lori & Terry. Things have been a bit chaotic - today was my last day at the doggy day care and some other minor woes in my life. Yes, I'm the one who quit the daycare and I did it like an adult this time. I got another job first, 50 cents more (not much an hour still) and more flexibility on the hours. In the past, I've left places when I couldn't take it anymore, who cared if I'd found another job or not! & once I even took a manager out with me. So this is "maturing" for me. ;) So in other words, haven't been feeling LT lately but I will return!
Hey, that's an improvement -- and the more flexible hours can really be helpful sometimes!
I finished The Left Hand of Darkness. Can't say I enjoyed it much. It read like a translation, the language was so inadequate to what she was trying to do. At least now. The use of the masculine pronoun seems dated by today's standards, and it also seemed as though she was talking about an all male society that somehow found a way to procreate. I know that wasn't the intent, but that was the effect. & I know Le Guin talks about her difficulties with the language of the time and says she wouldn't change it now, but that it would be a very different book if she were to write it now, after the English language has undergone some pressure to become less inherently sexist.
42. Rayla 2212 is a very Sun Ra inspired romp through time and space, complete with Egyptian royalty and lots of gold.
43. Should We Drown in Feathered Sleep is a novela by local author, Michael Merriam. Michael is legally blind and therefore writes well about people with disabilities. This one is no exception. His main character is a woman who lost the use of her legs when she climbed onto a roof during a bombing. The US's environment was destroyed in the bombing and very little wildlife has survived, but the pair of loons that have survived need human sacrifices. I mean loons like everyone in Minnesota would think of, waterfowl that is very awkward on land, has red eyes and a white necklace around their necks. They have a prominent place in Ojibwe beliefs. This is a satisfying blend of science fiction and folklore.
And #45. Best American Nonrequired Reading 2012 by Dave Eggers and Ray Bradbury - I've been reading this one off and on since 2012, which tells you something about it. It was compelling enough that I finished it, but easy enough to put aside that it took almost three years to finish it. Some of the pieces were wonderful, some a slog.
I've been trying to do more with the dogs and have been reading When Pigs Fly!: Training Success with Impossible dogs and working on the "exercises" from it. My dogs are far from impossible, but it's a popular training book at my school. The author did a seminar in town a couple years ago which I missed. (Dog Training Seminars can be super expensive.) Right now we are doing the exercise with the box. The dog gets clicked and treated for doing anything with a box. This is a fairly old, at least to me, exercise and we've done it before but her version is you click anything at first, even if the dog has done it before. The Pryor version of the exercise is only new behaviors get clicked. The dogs like Killion's version much better, and a side breakthrough to this training? Sage is willingly going into a crate and letting me lock him in it for a few minutes. He had been crated in the house he lived in before mine, but once he came here when I crated him, he'd freak out, tip the crate over and houdini his way out of it some how. Often I'd find long scabs on his ears from where he squeezed through the bars. So we gave up on crates. It's been two years, and now I'm reintroducing him to it.
So, here's a dog pic! Sage went swimming in the Mississippi.
(Bruce's evil twin :-))
Pieces and Players by Blue Balliett - A mid-grade to ya mystery about an art theft in Chicago. The attention to actual sites and artworks in Chicaco was a treat in this book. One of the characters, Zoomie, was a bright, legally blind boy that reminds me of one of the kids I work with. He's sighted enough and bright enough that sometimes you forget that he can only see the board if he's no more than 5 feet away from it. But the detective work was very random and it got annoying at times. Honestly, it wasn't really detective work at all. And the teacher that was leading the 5 kids (8th graders) struck me as patronizing. So, it was a sort of meh read.
So the latest are all audio books.
#50. Lockwood & Co: The Whispering Skull - was tied for best in the group. World is near future England, but there has been some sort of epidemic which makes ghosts very real, but only clearly seen by children. There is an industry around ghosts and ghost artifacts that throws the child labor laws out the window that gives the book a Victorian feel even though it isn't Victorian. Our heroine works for Lockwood, a teen in charge of his own ghost-busting agency, and has a skull in a jar that likes talking to her although she doesn't feel the same.
#51. One False Note Really? This is part of the hot series that has all the kids supposedly running to the next book? Blah. Pointless meandering. Annoying villains. Just in general, annoying. So did I like it? Will I read another? No.
52: Al Capone Does My Homework I generally avoid sequels like this one because the author clearly had a story that demanded to be written when she wrote Al Capone Does my Shirts. I figured it would be a let down, but I was wrong. Choldenko knows the world of Alcatraz and of Autism so well that she did have more than one book to write on it. She probably has several. Next AC Does My... book that comes past me, I'm going to grab it. & yes, this is the one Lockwood & Co tied for best.
53. Goosebumps: The Werewolf of Fever Swamp Not bad but certainly not as well done as the other Goosebump book I read. This one got annoying because the main character kept freaking out over werewolfy clues. Example - a rabbit ripped in two on his lawn. Could his nice stray dog have done that??? Nooooo, he's not a killer! (Close your eyes, ye of faint heart. All my dogs have killed a rabbit. Tons of dogs kill rabbits. It means they haven't lost their predatory instincts but it doesn't make them unnatural.) So, in other words, they kept building up nothing events imho into clear evidence of evile! Big whoopy ding. The dog didn't kill the rabbit. The werewolf did. That doesn't mean the dog didn't want to.
#55thatWasn't Gravity's Rainbow I was supposed to read it in college. The professor had assigned it thinking how bad can Pynchon be. It had just come out at the time and he hadn't had a chance to read it yet. When his 1st lecture on the book was "Why I do not like this book" I quit reading it. I didn't have much sense of humor when it came to the bawdy back then and could care less about whether bombs just happened to land wherever the American had sex or whether he was conditioned to respond erotically to bombs approaching. Yup, seriously. That's part of what the book is about. So I thought, I'm an adult now. I'll try it again. On Audio. When I spent over 15 minutes with one of the characters drunk, in a bathroom, fallen into the plumbing system, submerged with dingleberries... I can't do it. I just can't make myself finish this book. I swear, it's the literary version of Captain Underpants.
I met Choldenko at a conference shortly after the release of the first AC book. Best presenter at the conference, and wonderful to hear how her sister with autism inspired her work.
Rhonda, I'd prefer to clean a litter box than read Gravity's Rainbow!
Beware the Young Stranger by Ellery Queen. Mysteries were shaped differently back then. The front was filled with a lot of back story necessary to understand the murder, but the important murder didn't happen until we were well into the book. That's okay, I guess, but I found myself being impatient, and also found I'd missed some things because my attention wandered a bit while I was listening. Bad me.
Read book #59 so I've got one more crossed off the Wishlist! . One Crazy Summer Three girls go to visit their mother (who doesn't really know how to be a mother) in Oakland, CA during the 60s. Bobby Kennedy is dead already and the Black Panthers are around - those crazy radicals, as they've learned in their east coast home. However, their mother sends them to a free breakfast program and school run by the Panthers. Yes, the experience changes them and it's well worth hanging out with them on their summer that won't make a good school essay. 5 star of course.
As for And the earth did not devour him, thank heavens it included good translations! I was okay most of the time, but I sure appreciate my training wheels... and I'm running out of bilingual books.
#62 The Good Fortunes Gang by Margaret Mahy was a disappointment. I love Mahy's writing and she's hard to find in the US, so I snap up every book of hers I can find. This one just didn't have her intellectual, playful word-geek touch. It's about an extended family that moves back to the ancestral homestead in New Zealand. Some of t he cousins haze the other cousins because they aren't "Fortune" enough, Fortune being their surname.
Then Kim and Beth decided on their books while I was still struggling with mine. Kim is AWESOME at helping a person to whittle their pile down. I left behind That Guy Wolf Dancing and Fools Crow, all my adult fiction. Sigh!!! All the time we were eating yummy food next door, I was tempted to run back. The only thing that stopped me was the good company and the thought that the bookstore wasn't going anyplace. So my haul is Bringing our Languages Home, Moonshot; The Indigenous Comics Collection way cool!, Think Indian: Languages are beyond price and Beth's rec Rez Life. I must get reading!
So the audio books are Wylding Hall which is a folkrock documentary, except there's something off with the band's lead singer and that girl he likes? Weird! She looks like she's fourteen and in some sort of medieval see-through fairy nightgown for a dress... Oddly, it read a lot like a documentary, complete with that ooh this is getting boring feeling but there's a bit of juicy gossip in there as soon as this guy stops reminiscing about his days back when he had hair.
Then, back to my Lemony Snicket. The Hostile Hospital out of order and then The Vile Village. I thought I'd already read the village one, but was pretty sure from the set up of Hostile that I'd missed one. So now I'm back reading Hostile in it's proper order, and I can't help thinking Mr. Author who calls himself Snicket, why on earth would a hospital have a file library that included newspaper clippings on seltzer, lions, and all sorts of people who didn't even live in the vicinity the hospital served??? It's the coolest file room ever, but wouldn't the hospital's file library be about patients? I'll forgive him though because the series isn't exactly believable. I've even seen it filed as "fantasy" although it isn't really that either. It's more a spoof of those old orphan stories like A Little Princess which I love.
I posted the pictures on my thread. It was so great to meet you in person. And, yes, the poor women were not happy that you implied Ojibwe was an endangered language! Phew! I look forward to you discussions on Future Problem Solving. See ya around!
I think part of the disagreement comes from the definition of "fluent." My friend is obviously using it to mean something like "speaking the language from birth" or "doing most of your thinking in that language." I'd say in today's world, it probably isn't practical to do most of your thinking in Ojibwe. So one of the questions the Future Problem Solving question raises is does the language you think in form your perceptions of the world.
Watch the PBS special on First Speakers - lots of good info there.
Just found it online! I'll probably watch it Wednesday when I'll have more time.
(Bruce's evil twin :-))
Di, LOL! Not exactly the same market!
Future Problem Solving news: I finally sent out my email to the parents (with a suggestion that they visit Birchbark Books) and found that one of the parents lived through a horrible flood in Des Moines Iowa. She's going to come in and talk to the kids when we get to the recovering from a natural disaster topic. Happy dance!!! Now, as far as speakers go, all I have to do is talk to my Ojibwe acquaintance and try to talk her into it. Of course, I don't have to get speakers, but I think it makes it more fun and the kids learn from it in a different way than they do looking at articles or surfing the net.
As for books, audio again! I whip through those faster than the print ones - but then again, my print book at the moment is The Feast of the Goat and I've gotten to the chapters that involve a lot of torture. 60 pages left, I like it but the subject matter is so dark that I can only handle one or two chapters a day. It's a good companion piece to In the Time of the Butterflies by Julia Alvarez.
#67 A Plague of Bogles by Catherine Jinks is a fun piece where we follow a newly apprenticed street urchin as he risks his life killing Bogles before they can eat more children. When he isn't doing that, he's risking his life searching for Sarah Pickles, his thief mistress, who is believed dead but he knows in his heart she isn't, and she isn't retired either. I really enjoyed this one, but my favorite Jinks has still got to be The Reformed Vampire Support Group.
#68 The Carnivorous Carnival by Lemony Snicket. Yup, bad things happen to the orphans. I'm finding these addictive. Tim Curry does the voices, so I'm not sure if I'm getting an orphan-hardship fix or a Tim Curry fix.
Okay, off to entering some of these wayward books that have found their way into my home. Oh my. If the damage had been done all in one day, it would be approaching Cranswickian.
(Bruce's evil twin :-))
One last push to the 75 my dear. xx
The Slippery Slope
P.S. Be Eleven
The Terrible Two
The Grim Grotto
Yup, I'm on a Series of Unfortunate Events kick, partly because Tim Curry does the audio. I was just listening to a Freakazoid episode (yes, I'm a geek) and thinking what a wonderful voice the villain has! Sounds familiar like I should know who it is. It's not Ricardo Montalban. He's a different Freakazoid nemesis. It's ... OMG Tim Curry! Yes, he has a wonderful voice.
PS Be Eleven was fun, but if you are only going to read one book by Rita Williams-Garcia it would be better to choose One Crazy Summer which follows the same girls in a different situation.
The Terrible Two was hysterical! A Prankster moves into a school district to find out there is already a resident Prankster, who is far sneakier and far more clever than he is. And, to top it off, the resident Prankster is a nerd. So, if not a suitable friend he must be made a foe. Oh oh noes!
For example, #79 wasn't too difficult. Bad Kitty Meets the Baby I picked this up for the kids in my ALD class, but of course I had to read it first! Good humor. And no babies were harmed in the writing of this book.
I did just send an email to B&N that my copy of Arabian Nights (ebook) gets stuck halfway through, even if I archive/unarchive it. Maybe I can finish (ha ha) that book that I started for a group read two years ago!
I finished book #80 A Different Key which is one of my early review books. It's a history of Autism, which was quite interesting except it was looooong. It read more like a multi-person biography than a history. It discussed more of the social history of autism than the science of it, although they did include a bit of science too. I've worked as an educational paraprofessional with kids with autism for ten years now. Not the ones that are disabled to the point that they can't speak. I've worked with those a little bit, but that isn't for me. I get frustrated if I think collectively we can't reach my goal, which is for the kid to grow up to be able to live independently. So I came to it with a lot of background, but I don't think that was really necessary to understanding the book although at 500+ pages, you've got to have an interest in psychology or research or something to keep you going. I enjoyed it immensely, except the stuff about the vaccination theory of autism. I've known that was bogus for years and it just annoys me to hear about it. Yes, the authors know it is bogus too, but it has been a focus of many parents for years. Not so much now, but you still do hear about it sometimes. Glad the doctor who started it has banned from practicing. Seriously. He has. Worse than a snake oil salesperson.
I'm channeling my dogs. Just got distracted because I saw, Kobe, the neighbor's dog, out for a walk. The dogs didn't notice, but I did. Kobe is a beautiful German Shepard Rottweiler mix. He's huge!!! Friendly. And gotten himself in trouble because he is huge. Yup, Kobe and I are friends.
Back to In a Different Key, it was quite well researched and well written. A few glitches that I'm sure will be fixed before final publication. Definitely worth reading if you have an interest in Autism, or the Spectrum as many of us call it now. Respectful, not sensationalized, thorough (perhaps too thorough) and has interesting anecdotes about people who have it and their parents. I won't do a spoiler, but will say the anecdote they end on is particularly satisfying.
#81 Unstoppable by Bill Nye. I'll confess. I probably wouldn't have read this if it hadn't been by the Science Guy. I'm a total geek. He thinks like a future problem solver. See, there are solutions to global climate change.
I finished another one of the books I got on our outing to Boneshaker Books. Moonshot which is a collection of comics by and about First Nation peoples from both Canada and the United States. Of course, some of them were better than others. All were beautifully illustrated, and some of them were absolutely fabulous. Most were variations of tradition tales, some set in the future with a science fiction twist. Obviously, volume 2 is planned. I hope they are able to do it. Clearly, it wasn't a cheap book to produce and I'm sure it doesn't have mass distribution.
Here's a page from a Coyote story:
For my Christmas/Hanukkah/Solstice/Holiday image this year (we are so diverse!), I've chosen this photograph by local photographer Mark Lenoce of the pier at Pacific Beach to express my holiday wishes to you: Peace on Earth and Good Will toward All!
So, on to And After Many Days. It's a novel about Nigeria, and to be honest, I wouldn't be surprised if it is nominated for a Booker award. It does portray Nigeria as seen by a wealthy family that is not a member of the government. They have one foot in modern times and one foot in tribal culture. It starts when the oldest, the golden boy of the family, disappears as many people do in Nigeria at this time. Thing is, he is not known to be political. Then the story is told almost completely in flashback up to the point where we find out what happened. It also changes point of view characters regularly, so yes there are some characters I liked, I never felt I got to know any one person terribly well. So, for me a book I would have been just as happy not to have read. For others, I'm sure they will love it.
Yes! Let's meet up again in 2016! Berly & Beth, it was a great day. Maybe it can become an annual thing.
Anne, I am soooo missing those audios! I have The Bad Beginning on request from the library because I'm having Tim Curry withdrawal. I'm sure your daughter will have a great time with it and she'll probably go through all 13 of them by 2017. Just look at what Rocky Horror began.