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text 2020-03-13 20:01
Defending Jacob - William Landay

Oh this was good. So very, very good.


There were times when I wanted to reach through the page and shake Andy for some of the decisions he made.

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text 2020-03-12 01:19
Book Club Choice
Defending Jacob - William Landay

Andy Barber has been an assistant district attorney in his suburban Massachusetts county for more than twenty years. He is respected in his community, tenacious in the courtroom, and happy at home with his wife, Laurie, and son, Jacob. But when a shocking crime shatters their New England town, Andy is blindsided by what happens next: His fourteen-year-old son is charged with the murder of a fellow student. Every parental instinct Andy has rallies to protect his boy. Jacob insists that he is innocent, and Andy believes him. Andy must. He’s his father. But as damning facts and shocking revelations surface, as a marriage threatens to crumble and the trial intensifies, as the crisis reveals how little a father knows about his son, Andy will face a trial of his own—between loyalty and justice, between truth and allegation, between a past he’s tried to bury and a future he cannot conceive.


This is my latest book-club read and when I went to add it to my Booklikes shelf, I was surprised to see it was already on there, marked as 'Planning to Read'. Further investigation shows a 'Booklikers Recommendations' tag. I have no idea who recommended it but I'm looking forward to reading it particularly because the town where it is set is the one I lived in for twelve years before moving to North Carolina.

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text 2019-05-03 21:08
Finding More Blogs to Follow, Part 3 -- a Revival of "Follow Fridays"?


Those who were active on this site before mid-2018 probably remember "Follow Fridays", a series of interviews presenting individual BookLikes bloggers.  (For reference, the last "Follow Fridays" post, with links to all previous posts at the bottom, is HERE.)


OB brought up the idea of reviving that series of interviews among ourselves in the comments section of a blog post today, and we've been tossing it back and forth a bit (I confess I really like the idea) -- as to whether / how to keep the interview format, how to send images to be included in the interview, etc.  So I thought I'd just turn it over to the BL crowd at large:


* Would this be something you're interested in seeing revived?

* Ideas as to format  (interview / questionaire or something else)?

* If interview, how should we choose the interviewer?  The same person every time, or revolving among a group, or changing with every interview ... and picked -- how exactly?

* How do we choose the interviewees -- in particular, the 50 million dollar question: Absent administrative omniscience as to the universe of bloggers actually active on Booklikes (and in light of the known difficulties in discovering active bloggers before they vanish in frustration for lack of feedback on their posts) ... how do we rope in the unknowns, outside the circle of known faces / blog names routinely floating down our dashboards anyway?


Other ideas?  Suggestions?  Comments?  Please share and speak up!




Current thoughts:


* Interviews moving from blogger to blogger, with the interviewee of one week becoming the interviewer the following week.  This should (hopefully) also help in letting the interviews move away from just running around and around within the same circle of bloggers.

* Preferably, interviewees who don't have a huge number of followers yet (say, fewer than 50, or maybe even fewer than 30).

* Discussion group threads for backup, such as FAQs, rules, etc.  I initially thought about creating a new group, but thinking more about it, we already do have a perfectly-named group, "Finding More BookLikes Blogs to Follow", that many of us are members in.  So: backup threads in that group, with #Follow Fridays at the beginning of the thread title.

* Interview questions modeled on the pattern set by the original "Follow Friday" interviews, but mixed and matched with questions from other sources, possibly on a "pick at least 5 / 10 questions out of these 15 / 20" basis. Examples / suggestions:

Mike Finn's interview here: https://thereadingchick.com/2018/07/28/blogger-to-blogger-series-an-interview-with-mike-of-mike-finns-fiction/

-- or the "memes" / "bookish question" games that used to make the rounds of this site every so often, such as

IF the interviewee is OK with this, questions might also relate to their day job, if that job intersects with their love of reading (e.g., librarians, bookstore owners, authors, or teachers).


Additional ideas?



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text 2019-05-03 20:06
Active Groups on BookLikes -- or, Finding More Blogs to Follow, Part 2


Following up on BrokenTune's post regarding the "Find New BookLikes Blogs to Follow" group -- and while it can't be emphasized enough that to find more active bloggers you may want to follow, the best method is to actively participate in discussions on blog posts and check out the other participants in those discussions -- BookLikes' active discussion groups may also provide some guidance and inspiration.


So, here's a run down of the groups that, to my knowledge, are currently active on BookLikes (even if their members' discussions, too, tend to occur via blog posts and their comments sections, see above):


Find New Booklikes Blogs To Follow

As BrokenTune explained, specifically dedicated to finding new people to interact on Booklikes.


There are various threads where people can introduce themselves (for active reviewer bloggers, authors on BL, etc.), but the one thread you will want to follow by all means and even if you don't ever look at any of the other threads (or, for that matter, any other groups) is Shout-out for Newbies and "Underfollowed" (but Active) Blogs -- the one thread where everybody is invited to share new blogs they have discovered and want to see roped more firmly into the community.



Booklikes Bookish Bingo Club

The social hub of the BookLikes community.  The place to come together for the annual book bingo, running from September 1 through October 31 and hosted by Moonlight Reader and Obsidian Blue; ever since its 2016 introduction the book-related event of the year on this site.  Supplemented, over the course of the year, by a number of other book-related games (our game hosts' minds are creative, versatile and ... always apt to spring a surprise on us!)
The club's members list is also an excellent starting point for finding new (active) blogs to follow.



The Flat Book Society

Created to read and discuss what would generally be called 'popular' science titles; one book every other month, beginning in January of every year.

The group votes on a fresh list of submissions every two months, once the book for the next group read has been selected. The group's "overflow nomination list"  is here:

Current (= May 2019) selection: Penny Le Couteur & Jay Burreson: Napoleon's Buttons: How 17 Molecules Changed History



Pymalong Club

Exploring works by and about Barbara Pym. Group reads every six weeks, taken from a reading list voted on by members.
Current read (as from May 1, 2019): An Unsuitable Attachment.
All things Agatha Christie -- including but by far not limited to a number of mostly spontaneously announced buddy reads.  Next up:
* Death on the Nile -- starting on May 18, 2019, and
* Christie's own stage adaptation of her novel Towards Zero, contained in the collection The Mousetrap and Other Plays.  (No date set yet, but probably some time in May as well.)
The latter is part of a project involving the reading of all of Agatha Christie's plays, the better part of them as buddy reads between myself and Moonlight Reader (and whoever wants to join in, of course).  Further details HERE.
A group to discuss and read classic crime fiction written and published between 1900 and 1970; modeled on the original Detection Club founded in the 1930s by the leading lights of the world of Golden Age mysteries, including Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers, and Anthony Berkeley.
There is currently no group read, but a few of us are -- very leisurely, and each at their own pace -- slowly but surely working our way through a Detection Club bingo card, inspired by two books by the current (real) Detection Club president and chief archivist, Martin Edwards, about the club's history; The Story of Classic Crime in 100 Books and The Golden Age of Murder.  BL club members also spontaneously come together for Golden Age mystery-related buddy reads.
Terry Pratchett. Granny Weatherwax. Sam Vimes. Angua. DEATH. And the rest of the gang.
Group reads of the Discworld novels in publication order, every two months.  Next read: Sourcery -- beginning on June 1.
Group / buddy reads of the free ebooks published monthly at https://ebookclub.tor.com/
Monthly (?) discussion of YA books selected by group members.
(I'm not a member of the last two groups -- maybe someone who is can supplement a bit more information?)
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url 2019-05-03 15:35
Returned Blogger: Yasmin, aka "a reading life"

MbD already shared the link to her blog in the "shout-out" thread in the "Find New BookLikes Blogs to Follow" group, but not everybody may have seen that, so just in case:


Yasmin, who blogs under the name "a reading life", has returned to BookLikes (yey) after RL interfering in a major way for the past 3+ years (boo).  She's posted a short reintroduction post HERE.  (I'm not simply reblogging it for the usual BL-related faux-attribution reasons.) 


This is an active blogger returning to BL -- and a Golden Age mystery fan to boot [side-eyes the Agathytes and Detection Club members], so I think this does call for a drumroll of sorts!


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