Therese (Takenby05) It has been awhile

Converses75 Books Challenge for 2021

Afegeix-te a LibraryThing per participar.

Therese (Takenby05) It has been awhile

1takenby05
gen. 1, 11:44am

Hello everyone, I use to do the 75 book challenges when my kids where younger and I was moving around with my husband in the military. Then I stopped doing the challenges to keep up with the life of my kids, now they are older and my husband has retired and I decided it was a year to try and see how many books I can read in a year. I am in a book club where we live so that gives me some books titles and genres that I don't normally read and looking for more ideas with in the group to try. I am currently reading books based in Alaska, since my family will be moving that way in May. But I am pretty much willing to try and read anything from young adult novels to sci fi and fantasy. I am looking forward to getting back into the world of books.

2xymon81
gen. 1, 1:24pm

>1 takenby05: Good luck, and enjoy many good reads. Great to have you back.

3drneutron
gen. 1, 2:17pm

Welcome back! A move to Alaska sounds exciting!

4takenby05
Editat: gen. 1, 2:36pm

>2 xymon81: Thank you. I am working on trying to figure out my plan of attack.

5takenby05
gen. 1, 2:35pm

>3 drneutron: We have lived there before but looking forward to heading back!

6FAMeulstee
gen. 1, 4:43pm

Happy reading in 2021, Therese!

7thornton37814
gen. 1, 7:12pm

Hope you have a great year in books!

8PaulCranswick
gen. 1, 8:10pm



And keep up with my friends here, Therese. Have a great 2021.

9takenby05
gen. 3, 7:15pm

1. The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

I have to say this book really touched me. This is the book of Nora Seed, who struggles with depression and not thinking that she is good enough. 72 hours before she decides to kill herself, a couple of things prompt her to end it all, 1. her beloved cat dies, 2. her brother that is in town doesn't come to see her and doesn't answer her calls, 3. she lost her job, even though she wasn't fond of it, 4. her neighbor tell her that he doesn't need her help anymore. 5. an old classmate askes her what has had done with her life since she was designated to be great. 6. Her best friend doesn't respond to her call either. 7. her followers on social media, is too small and they don't seem to really like her work. 8.the mother of the student that she is teaching piano too is angry with her and tells her she can't teach her child any longer. 9. she is still sad about her mothers passing. 10. she regrets all the things that she has never done. So she decides to end her life. She takes pills and drinks a whole bottle of wine and ends up at the midnight library. The midnight library is the in between neither alive or died. In this library she reads her book of regrets with her old school librarian that has always believed in her when she was younger. With the help of Mrs. Elm the librarian, Nora "reads" the books of what her life could or would have been if she made other choices. Nora is "sucked" into the book and lives that life, if the live isn't what she wants she is "sucked" back to the library where she can try a new book and a new life.

Since I don't want to ruin how this book ends, I am going to just say what I took away from this book is stop living with what you could have, should have, and would have done and just enjoy who you are at this moment, yes you can change it but if you are so worried about who you are not, how do you get to enjoy what you have right in front of you?

10takenby05
gen. 3, 7:16pm

>8 PaulCranswick: Paul I love this, it is what I am hoping to have more this year.

11takenby05
gen. 3, 7:16pm

>7 thornton37814: Thank you, I hope you enjoy your year of reading as well!

12takenby05
gen. 3, 7:17pm

>6 FAMeulstee: Thank you, you too!

13drneutron
gen. 3, 9:43pm

>9 takenby05: That one’s on my wishlist - looks like it was pretty good.

14takenby05
gen. 4, 9:45am

>13 drneutron: It really was! It was a book club pick for my monthly book club, and I really enjoyed it. It is a quick read if you have the time to do so.

15takenby05
gen. 5, 9:49am

2. Joe Biden the Life, the Run and What Matters Now by Evan Osnos
Before I get into a summary of this book let me start out by telling you I am not into politics and I don't understand as much about what goes on behind the scenes like I should. This was the first year that it seemed to matter to find out more about politics and who our next president might be. Having said that I picked up this book because I wanted to see if I could understand more of Biden's thoughts and views and maybe what he will do to help unify the states. I have to say with these books there were some good points but in a whole I am walking away from this book more confused if he will be a good president or not. I know that he will have a lot of obstacles to battle since the world has gone crazy in the last half of year or more, but I don't know even if I have hope in the next term if we can undo all the damage that has been done.

At this point I would not recommend this book to others like me that were never into politics because a lot of it I did not understand what they were referring to. What this book has taught me I need to do more research in the policies in place and what they are looking at trying to do in this new term.

16takenby05
gen. 7, 3:04pm

3. Too Much and Never Enough How My family created the world's Most Dangerous Man by Mary L. Trump

Thoughts on this book. I have to say this book made me feel a little for Donald, being such a young child just wanting to be loved by parents that were not capable of giving him the love, affection and attention the 2 year old little boy needed. Then I just ended up just being really angry with all of the people around him that didn't make him accountable for his actions. And allowing him to lie to himself in order for him to feel worthy. A lot of people that are emotionally under developed go out of their way to make others look a lot more worse then they are. This is what he has done with his whole life within his family. Even though I got a little more insight from one person about how the family was, and I feel bad for the little boy with out love I still don't like him.

17takenby05
gen. 11, 1:54pm

4. The Return by Nicholas Sparks
It was a good story for what it was. I felt though the ending was going to be typical and it was. This is the story of Trevor who goes back to his grandpa's home after his grandfather has passed away and sort of falls into a mystery of a girl that is walking around the small town of New Bern. The girl falls from a ladder and he becomes wrapped around her identity to try and safe her life.

It was a quick read and a nice story but it wouldn't be one of my top favorite of his.

18takenby05
gen. 17, 10:18am

5. Ready Player Two by Ernest Cline

I was interested on how this would play out because I felt the ending of the first book wrapped things up nicely. Of course since it has been a bit since I read/heard the first one. It was a good quick read. Not saying it was all time favorite but it was a good book.

19scaifea
gen. 18, 8:50am

>18 takenby05: My son gave me this one for Christmas and I'm eager to get to it! I'm glad you seem to like it!

20takenby05
gen. 21, 10:37am

6. Little Wishes by Michelle Adams
This is a sweet little story that goes back in forth between present and past times. Elizabeth and Tom lived in a small coastal village. Elizabeth was the daughter of a doctor and Tom is the son of a lower class family. The two fall in love but of course the statues of their live deem it impossible for them to be together. Elizabeth is set to marry a doctor that her father has choose for her. And Tom has no means at the time to support her. Elizabeth doesn't care she is going to be with him no matter what. But her fiancé tells Tom that they have gotten married while Tom away trying to earn some money to marry Elizabeth. Every year on the day they kissed Tom comes back to the small village and delivers a flower and a wish to her doorstep. On the anniversary of their 50th year a flower and a wish doesn't arrive. So Elizabeth sets out to find out why he didn't show up. They are able to tell each side of the story of what happened so many years ago and work on accomplishing some of their wishes.

21takenby05
gen. 24, 6:16pm

7.Stone Wall by Beverly Lewis
Even though I don't read a lot of Amish books, my mother loved them. I read this book in honor of my mother that passed away a couple of years ago just to feel a little closer to her.
Anna, is a young Amish woman that was courting a beau, that ended up leaving the Amish faith and she was heartbroken. A year after this happens she felt like she needed a change. She travels to another Amish community to work as a tour guide while living with distant cousins that happened to be old order Amish, from my understand, since I really don't read these kinds of books. Each sect of Amish sticks with its own sect. Anna's parents don't want her getting involved with the old order because I guess they feel like they don't teach/preach the same as the beachy Amish that she is from. Anna as working for a tour guide meets Martin and starts a friendship with him, even though he isn't beachy Amish he is closer to her religion then old order is. The form a friendship, she also meets a guy name Gabe that runs a therapy horse ranch program for those that have disabilities She volunteers to work as a side walker for kids that need the extra support while they are sitting on the horses. Gabe is a widower with a young daughter who stopped talking after her mother passes away. Emmie his daughter takes a liking to Anna and they form a friendship. There is also a side story of Anna's grandmother that had a little love story in the same town but didn't have the chance to stay with her first love because their religion was different.
It was a sweet story even though not my normal genre and made me feel close to my mother while reading stories of Amish that she so loved to read.

22takenby05
Editat: gen. 26, 4:43pm

8.Seven Lies by Elizabeth Kay
I am still working on how I feel about this book. I know what it is like to feel like you are being ousted by family and friends for different things going on in their life but I could not image killing in order to not be ousted. Ok so this is a story of Jane and how Jane and her best friend Marnie. They met when they were 11 years old and became in separable. Of course as they got older Jane was first to get married but her husband died after a drunk driver hit him in front of her. She picks up her relationship with Marnie, but Marnie moves on to live and then get married. Jane once again feels displaced by Marnie's husband Jonathan. Jonathon dies and once again Jane and Marnie have a strong friendship. Marnie finds out she is pregnant and wants to focus on her baby to be, Jane feels displaced again. Even though Jane does everything that she can think of to stay in Marnie's life, she still feels jealous of anyone else that takes attention away from her. It is a pretty twisted story, and the ending story leaves you hanging.

23takenby05
gen. 28, 9:14pm

9. The Guest List by Lucy Foley
This was a quick read, even if it was predictable what was going to happen and who the "bad" guy was, at least to me. This is the story of Jules and Will's wedding. They decide to get married an a island in Ireland. Someone is murdered and you have to figure out who and why they were murdered and then ultimately a lot of people had reasons to kill the person who died, so you had to figure out who it was.

24takenby05
gen. 30, 11:02am

10. The Silence by Susan Allott
I have to say I liked this story better then I thought I was going to. I completed it in one day.
This is the story of Isla and her dysfunctional family. Her dad is an alcoholic and her mother is depressed and wants to go back home to England. Isla is 4 years old when after her parents get into a fight her mother whisks her off to her grandmother's in England. during that time her father gets into a relationship with the neighbor wife and the person that cared for Isla while they were still living in Australia. After a couple of months Isla and her mother move back to Australia to be with her father. We don't get much about what happened during that time besides more dysfunction will at least a hint of it. But Isla is called back to Australia for her father's birthday party and also because there is an on going investigation to the disappearance of Mandy the next door neighbor that disappeared 30 years ago. It is said that her father was the last person to see Mandy, but Isla doesn't believe her father harmed her so she sets out to find out what really happened.
One thing I learned in this book that I never heard about was the stolen generation. I had to look it up because I wasn't sure if it was a real thing but it was. This is when aboriginal and Torres strait islander children were forcible removed from their family and sent to homes to "give them a better life". And help them assimilate to improve their ability to become part of white society. Unfortunately these kids didn't always get the better life they were promised to their parents and some of these kids were so young they never knew who they were or where they came from in order to help them reconnect to their families after Australia stopped the practice.

25PaulCranswick
gen. 30, 10:39pm

>9 takenby05: I think that will be my first purchase when the book store opens here again or should i say if the book store opens again!

26takenby05
feb. 2, 3:43pm

>25 PaulCranswick: It is an amazing book. I think I have recommended it to people who ask me about my favorite read so far this year.

27takenby05
feb. 2, 3:53pm

11. Dear Child by Romy Hausmann
Right now all I can say is wow. I am still working on processing this book in my head right now. So this is the story of "Lena". Lena was abducted from her family and friends when she was 23 years old. Her father has been looking for her for 13 years, then one day they get a call from a hospital, that they have a woman who says she is Lena that was hit by a car. The parents rush to the hospital just to find out this young woman isn't their daughter but then who is she. She also was taken to the hospital with a 13 year old girl that looks just like their daughter did when she was younger. Through this story they have to unravel what happened to their daughter Lena and who was the one who took her.
I personally thought the father(Lena's) was a giant asshole, of course I would understand doing all that you can to find your child but he was way out there for me. I don't like that we don't know how in the long run the children faired. Did they get the help they need to over come their trauma? Did Hannah (13 year old girl) ever find out if she was on the spectrum? Did she find a healthier way to express her emotions?
All in all I didn't want to put the book down because I wanted to know how it would all turn out but I was some what upset by how the book plodded along.

28takenby05
feb. 3, 10:53pm

12. A Walk Along The Beach by Debbie Macomber
This is a sad sweet story about sisters. One sister (Harper) had cancer three years ago and was in remission. Her older sister (Willa) that owned a coffee shop. Sean a man that is trying to start a new life after his career in baseball has ended. Harper, sets up Willa and Sean because she could see that they were right for each other and she wanted Willa to have more in her life then just Harper. Harper and Willa's mom had passed away some years before and their father couldn't cope so he turned to drinking and has been the best father figure but Willa keeps everything and everyone going in her life.

29takenby05
feb. 5, 4:15pm

13. White Fragility Why It's So Hard For White People To Talk About Racism by Robin Diangelo

I got this recommendation from another book club, even though I am a person of color on the outside, but I was raised all white. I thought this would be an interesting read. And it was. I know that I have my own prejudices that I have to work on but it was interesting to see how systemic racism has occurred over the years, and why so many whites think that they are not racist at all. I am not sure If I have really felt the plight of most black people until this years when I really I guess got worried about how people see me even though I see myself as white. Now I want to learn more about how we as a society can change some of the systemic racism that is still here in the world today.

30takenby05
feb. 9, 7:57am

14. Neighbors by Danielle Steel.
I really like this story even if I didn't feel like it was all plausible. Meredith White is an actor that was a recluse for the last 14 years after her husband left for another woman and then her son died shortly after. She lives in a large house with just two of the home care workers that is a husband and wife. They do everything for her but little does she know that they have been stealing from her for the last 14 years. One night there is a large earthquake 8.2 since her house is made like a fortress she invites her neighbors to stay with her, to the dismay of her caretakers. They are afraid that they will lose control of her if she talks to other people. Once she has her neighbors come stay with her while it takes them to have their houses fixed she forms a friendship/family with them and she realizes that she needs to stop hiding from the world and get back out there. She tries to reconnect with her daughter but that doesn't work but she does establish a relationship with her only grandchild and does a movie with her.
All and all the moral I got from this is that you need to get back out in the world even if you have been hurt. And as a military spouse I have always felt like family doesn't have to be the one you were born into or married into but those good friends that get you and want to be a part of your life.

31takenby05
feb. 10, 9:57pm

15. Day Zero, by Kelly Devos.
Jinx ( Susan) is a teenage girl that just wants to play her video games. Her Mom is a history teacher, her stepdad works in bank security, her dad is a doom day prepper and also a big time hacker/computer programmer. She also has a younger brother and two step siblings. After living school Jinx, Mac and Charlie head to the story to get snacks but when they get there and are getting ready to check out the bank next door explodes. They make it out of the store and back home where the stepfather is arrested and accused of setting off a bomb to take down the infrastructure of the world since every thing is run by computers. Jinx is sent with her younger brother and her stepsister Mac to go and find her dad so that he can help clear her stepfather's name. Mac doesn't want to go on the run with out her own brother Toby so they go to the college in order to find him and they are on a race to find Max (Jinx and Charlie's dad). In the process the are being hunted by Tork that is sent to capture them and bring them to Carver who is the president. Things keep getting blown up and people are hurt they run across a sort of an underground movement that doesn't believe that Carver has the people's well being at heart. She, Mac, Charlie and Toby finally locate her dad, get her stepdad out of prison by breaking him out, and locates her mom and they are all on the run together, but something isn't right. Tork always seems to be there when he should know where they are are at. Who is feeding their location to the enemy and why?

32takenby05
feb. 15, 5:20pm

16. Day One by Kelly Devos
Jinx continues her saga, in the last part her little brother Charles was taken and she has to get him back. Mac is still impulsive and takes off with out telling anyone where she is going. Toby is in charge of the mission to take down president carver. Gus finds out his dad is still alive. Jinx's mother is dead or maybe she isn't?
It was ok an ok book for a second of part of the series but wasn't my favorite.

33takenby05
feb. 17, 9:24am

17. This is not a Ghost Story by Andrea Portes.
This is the story of Daffodil that has something "unnamed" that she has to deal with. She ends up in this little small town between Senior year and freshman year in college to make some money to help her "restart" her life after the terrible unnamed thing happened. Her job is just to house sit for a professor and his wife while they go stay on a an island and construction is going on, on their property. She is suppose to over see it and make sure that everything is fine with the house. Things start happening that she can not explain normally but since she is a really rational person she just chalks it up to dreams because her mental state isn't good after the unnamed thing happened. The whole book goes like this until the last couple of pages when you finally figure out what has happened.
I did not like this book at all, I had to finish it to see if it made any sense by the time I got to the end. Even though you finally get the unnamed thing disclosed, I still felt the book was confusing and didn't like it at all.

34takenby05
feb. 20, 12:00pm

18. Faith taking Flight by Julie Murphy
I don't mind reading Ya novels at all sometimes they come in handy to break up some more difficult readings.
I am still on the fence if I like or didn't like this novel. I feel like that we had a lot about the characters but not enough of the plot of the story. And when the plot really picks up it is the last couple of chapters and I felt left with the thought like I don't understand what this book was all about. Yes the author was great on making 2 out of the 3 main characters gay/lesbian and the main character was pansexual. but I really wanted to know more about Faith and her super natural abilities and the "other groups" that were trying to make superheroes and why. But you don't get any of that, maybe it was meant to be a cliffhanger to go on to a second book, but really I was like meh. I don't know if I would even pick up a second book if one was made because I felt the story was so disjointed for me.
Things I did like was Faith wasn't your normal superhero, she was a fat girl that was pansexual. Which growing up I didn't not see alot of books about people that weren't straight or skinny? So I did like that this author was telling teens that you don't have to be just like everyone else and embrace who you are, skinny, fat, weird, gay, lesbian or pansexual and it is ok. I just wished that the story plot was better.

35takenby05
feb. 24, 2:11pm

19. The Kingdom Keepers: Disney after Dark by Ridley Pearson.
I was recommended reading this series about a year ago by a friend of a friend that really loves Disney world. I was a in a bit of a reading slump not being able to get sucked into a book or being able to finish a couple of other books so I thought why not. Maybe if I read this juvenile novel I will feel like I have read something and can get back into the swing of reading.
So this is a story of Finn, Willa, Charlene, Maybeck, Philby, and Amanda (who is not a DHI). all of the kids beside Amanda are a virtual reality host at Disney. To become a host they had to audition and get expected and then they had their bodies and movement of their bodies recorded so their holograms can walk around the park and get guest to follow them and talk with them about the attractions. Expect with this program some how at night when they are sleeping they are pulled to Disney world where they have to defeat and overtakers that is trying to expand their evilness outside of the park. Wayne an older guy that claims that he was in a confidante to Walt Disney, tell the kids why they keep being pulled into the park while they are sleeping and try to help them defeat the overtakers by giving them a story that was told to him by Walt to defeat the overtakers. The kids have to put clues together in order to make the plan work. In the mean time Amanda is direction/helping the kids with getting into different areas of the park. Jez is another girl that pops up and they have to figure out if it is Jez or Amanda that keeps telling the evil one where they are and what they are up to so that she can try and stop them.
I really enjoyed the book, and I am looking forward to see how the series plays out.

36takenby05
feb. 26, 10:00pm

20.Kingdom Keepers II: Disney at Dawn by Ridley Pearson
Jez is freed from the spell place her on Maleficent, but while at the parade to celebrate the DHI she is kidnapped. The rest along with Amanda her sister have to find her and stop Maleficent's evil plot this time. This store takes place in Animal Kingdom, so not only do they have to avoid people but they also have to watch out for animal. Real or holograms.

37takenby05
feb. 28, 9:10am

21. Murder, Motherhood, and Miraculous Grace a true story by Debra Moerke.
Debra and Al have been taking in foster kids 16 years of their marriage. One day they get a call if they would be willing to take a 4 day old baby that mother had drugs in her system and the baby was going through withdraws from the drug. The Moerke's said yes and brought home baby Ally. A few days later the agency call and said that baby Ally has siblings are they are also in need of placement and are they willing to take them as well? So they get 4 out of 5 of Ally's siblings. Andrew(3) and Hannah(4), Kyle(6) and Kyra(5). The Moerke's main goal while having their foster and of course their own children is to show them not just the love of them as parents but the love of God. Each night they prayed for the kids, and the parents of the children to receive God's love, grace and compassion. After having the Bower children for 11 or so months they are sent back home to their mother Karen. Andrew and Hannah doesn't seem to want to go back and Deb has to force them to do visitations before they are sent back for good. She knows something is up with the relationship with Karen and Hannah and asks if she can just keep Hannah until Karen is more stable with the rest of the kids. The judge says no and orders all the siblings back. Deb for the next six months makes point to go to Karen's house to check and let Karen know she is not alone and has help if she needs her. During those visits she doesn't seen Hannah or some of the other children on a regular basis and when she doesn't see them she feel like something is off. She makes numerous calls to DFS to let them know she feels like something is wrong and they ended up telling her to mind her business that everything is fine. In the meantime Karen is pregnant again with another baby, the baby is born and Deb goes to make a visit with a baby gift. While there Andrew blurts out that Hannah has gone to live with a family friend. This raise and alarm bell for Deb that once again reaches out to DFS who ignore her pleads. Shortly after that Karen is arrest for grand larceny. DFS then reaches out to ask Deb if she might know the whereabouts of Hannah. She reminded them she has been telling them that something wasn't right and she hadn't seen Hannah in months. It comes to find out that Karen, killed Hannah one night in a fit of rage and her body was shoved in a trash bag in the garage where she has been for the last 9 months. Moerke family go to the all of the moods you go through for grieve of a loved one. Then Karen calls Deb to see if she will come to see her in prison. Deb does even though she doesn't know if it is the right thing but is trusting in God to steer her correctly. While she visits, she finds out Karen is pregnant once again and wants the Moerke's to take guardianship of the new baby. Deb and family say they won't do that but they will adopt the baby to keep it out of DFS. Through out this story we find how she uses the grace of god in her life to extend that to the people around her making a change in their life as well.
Even though the book had some sad moments I really enjoyed it.

38takenby05
març 4, 10:50am

22. Books can be deceiving a library lover's mystery by Jenn McKinlay.
Every once and a while you just need a cozy mystery that doesn't need to make you think to much but just be transported to a different place.
It is a story that takes place in a little town called Briar's Creek. Lindsey and her friend Beth work in the community library and love what they do. Beth has been dating Rick for the last five years and he is an acclaimed children's book author. Beth has been working on her own series but Rick doesn't think it is good. Then a publisher comes in from New York and Beth shows her, her story but finds out that Rick has already pitched and has her book in production under his name. She is furious and her and Lindsey take a water taxis out to the island that Rick lives on only to discover that he is dead, murdered and with the word liar written on his forehead. Of course Beth becomes number one suspect and Lindsey sets out to prove Beth isn't the killer.

39scaifea
març 5, 8:17am

>38 takenby05: I'm a few books into this series and really enjoy it - you're right that sometimes a cozy mystery just hits the spot!

40takenby05
març 5, 10:56am

>39 scaifea: I just put a hold for my library on the next too books. I had been struggling with completing some books. I would start them but not get into them and shelf them so I thought maybe I just need a little cozy mystery series to read.

41takenby05
març 5, 11:03am

23. We are their heaven: Why the dead never leave us. by Allison DuBois.
This author was recommended in my monthly ladies book club that I met with in my area. We had got on a conversation of those that left us and the signs that they leave behind to let us know they are ok. My mom passed away a couple of years ago and I struggle with guilt and loneness of my mother's passing even if we weren't always on the same page. Every once and awhile I will feel something or my cats will be watching something in the house that I can't seem to see what they are seeing, so I wonder if it is my mom checking in with us and her grandkids and great grandkid. So I decided to give this book a try. It is a good book, in some aspects but I wonder for myself if I see/feel things because I want to believe that she is here trying to make amends from some of the things that hurt are relationship. I have always wanted to go to a medium but part of me is still skeptical that they would just do like a facebook check and find out what is going on in my life before they talk to me. I don't regret taking the time to read this book but I feel like I still have other unanswered questions that I am still processing in my own head.

42takenby05
març 11, 12:42pm

24. Kingdom Keepers III: Disney in Shadow by Ridley Pearson The kingdom keepers are on the way to save/find Wayne. But into their group the make Amanda and Jess become part of the DHI group so they can cross over at night and help the original kingdom keepers save Wayne. This time the parents of Finn and Philby also get involved because they are stuck in the syndrome.

43PaulCranswick
març 13, 10:33pm

For some reason I have missed your thread recently, Therese. Enjoyed catching up with your excellently succinct reviews. x

I did buy The Midnight Library when the bookstore reopened by the way!

44takenby05
març 16, 9:05am

25. Kingdom Keepers IV: Power Play by Ridley Pearson