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text 2020-06-01 17:45
Reading progress update: I've read 94 out of 380 pages.
L'énigme des Blancs-Manteaux - Jean-François Parot

Expand for images.

 

(Images et texte français en bas.)

 

I'm at the end of chapter 4 now, and things are definitely getting interesting.

 

The first two chapters (not merely chapter 1) were basically exposition, designed to get across that Nicolas is alone in Paris, with nothing to call him back to Brittany and, on the other hand, his job keeping him busy in the capital and providing the key reason for him to remain there.  The second chapter (set in Brittany and explaining why he believes he's left it behind for good) was well-written, though, I thought.  And leaving aside my usual minor eye-roll at the fact that a young, personable recent ex-trainée is being put in charge of a major investigation (bypassing every single more senior professional), at least Nicolas isn't making a complete fool of himself -- and he is actually willing to listen to his more experienced second in command (whom he has asked to be put at his disposition to begin with), so props for that.

 

The action has caught up with (and moved on from) the scenes of the "official" prologue, which we now know happened on the night of Nicolas's arrival in Chartres (i.e., on the doorsteps of Paris) on his return from Brittany, and we now also know the identity of one of the corpses deposited on the road to La Villette -- and can at least guess at that of the second one.  And if I hadn't decided that just around noon was late enough to be getting up, I might actually have continued reading after all ... (which my cats would surely have preferred, seeing as it would have meant more cozy-up-with-mom-in-bed time for them).

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Je viens de terminer le 4e chapitre, et les choses définitivement commencent à être intéressantes.

 

Les deux premiers chapitres (pas seulement le chapitre premier) principalement servent de mise en scène, et sont désignés de transmettrre l'idée de Nicolas seul à Paris, sans rien de le ramener à la Bretagne et, de l'autre côté, avec son métier fournissant son occupation et la raison principale pour lui de rester à la capitale.  Pourtant, le deuxième chapitre (qui se déroule en Bretagne et explique pourquoi Nicolas croit l'avoir quitté pour toujours) est bien écrit, je pense.  Et à part du fait que je suis, comme toujours, un peu énervée de voir un jeune et sympathique ex-apprenti récent mis en chef d'une investigation importante (en dépassant chacun des professionels avec plus d'expérience), du moins Nicolas ne se rend pas ridicule -- et il est même prêt à écouter aux conseils de son officier adjoint plus éprouvé (lequel Nicolas lui-même a demandé être mis à sa disposition), donc ça me rend content.

 

L'action a maintenant repris (et continué) des scènes du prologue *officiel" qui, on sait maintenant, s'est déroulé dans la nuit de l'arrivée de Nicolas à Chartres (c-à-d au seuil de Paris) durant son retour de Bretagne; et on connaît aussi maintenant l'identité d'un des cadavres déposés sur la route à La Villette -- et l'on peut du moins deviner celui du deuxième.  Et si je n'avais pas déterminé qu'il était déjà assez tard, au midi, de me lever, j'aurais bien pu continuer de lire ... (ce que mes chats sans doute auraient préféré, puisqu'il aurait signifié, pour eux, plus de temps de câliner au lit de maman).

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Le Châtelet (destroyed at the beginning of the 19th century) and its location

 

Rue des  Blancs-Manteaux today (screenshot from Google Streetview) and its location -- Le Châtelet is in the lower left corner of the map, on the banks of the Seine.  The exact location of Lardin's house in the rue des Blancs-Manteaux is unclear, as the two side streets mentioned as reference points do not / no longer exist.

 

The locations of Vaugirard (in the southwest) and La Villette (in the northeast), both now incorporated into the city of Paris.  Châtelet is almost exactly halfway between both (former) villages where the "P" of "Paris" is on the map.  (Right-click on the image to see a larger version of the map.)

 


Map of La Villette (1730)

 


Map of Vaugirard (1805)

 

(Neither the present-day La Villette nor the present-day [Blvd. de] Vaugirard recall, even in the slightest, the erstwhile villages.)

 

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text 2020-06-01 16:29
Reading progress update: I've listened 438 out of 574 minutes. - I'm enjoying the calm, insightful storytelling
The Jane Austen Society - Natalie Jenner,Richard Armitage

This is a lovely piece of writing about a small group of people and what they know and are able to feel and say about themselves and each other. It's clean, calm, character-driven prose that gets you inside the head of each of the main characters.

 

We see the world through their eyes, amplified by the different things each of them gets from reading Austen and the different things they see in Austen's characters.

 

There's a lot of grief and pain and awkwardness but there is also a backdrop of hope.

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review 2020-06-01 10:46
Cherish (Clark Family #2) by: Evelyn Sola
Cherish (Clark Family #2) - Evelyn Sola

 

 

 

 

Cherish by Evelyn Sola

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


If Jake and Sandy had me at hello, Jason and Alex broke me at goodbye. Cherish proved to be a captivating follow up to an already irresistible series. What I love most about The Clark Family series is that it tackles everything from racist stereotypes to tempting romance and the beauty of what makes a family. At it's heart, LOVE, is the foundation for what unites these characters. No matter the color of their skin or the heartache in their lives, LOVE is what guides them through the rough spots. The carefree bachelor finds his soulmate despite the odds. The proof is in the tears. 

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review 2020-06-01 08:47
The Geeky Chef Cookbook
The Geeky Chef Cookbook: Real-Life Recipes for Your Favorite Fantasy Foods - Unofficial Recipes from Doctor Who, Games of Thrones, Harry Potter, and more - Cassandra Reeder

I always like it when people take something they like, in this case food, and look in a lot of different places how other people are dealing with it. In the geeky chef cookbook, accompanying the blog, there is a collection of foods, both savory and sweet that has links with many fandoms.

The recipes often look great, but what I particularly liked about this cookbook, except for the research that went into designing foods that have something very meagre descriptions in the works they originate from, was the sheer number of different fandoms that the book touches upon. I think it is simply impossible, if you even slightly identify as geeky, to not find at least some of your favorites here.

I haven’t made any of the recipes myself, although I really want to make those lemon cakes from ASOIAF, the cake from Portal, and the cauldron cakes from HP. Apparently, I’m more of a sweet tooth than I give myself credit from.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

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review 2020-06-01 08:43
Dear Girl
Dear Girl - Aija Mayrock

I wrote to find the answers,
instead
I found myself.

Dear girl is a collection of short poems on female empowerment by a young new poet. This is her first collection, and as such it is dealing with very urgent and important matters. It is a part of a stream of feminist poetry for girls, which I can only applaud. However, the poems were rather simple at times and I thought they could have been better if they had been a bit more subtle at times. Part of poetry for me is not only the message but also the beautiful phrasing of things, and the latter was a bit missing in some of poems.

Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

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