logo
Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
back to top
Search tags: WeNeedDiverseBooks
Load new posts () and activity
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2018-09-03 16:10
August Retrospective

Between procrastinating the book for my IRL book club, getting hooked on an online farming game, and starting to watch Dr. Who with my husband, I’ve spent a surprising amount of August not reading.  I’m especially surprised because I’ve been on vacation for the past week and instead of my usual book a day, I have only finished one book (though I did DNF 2 others). 

 

During August, I finished 3 books in print and 1 audiobook.

 

Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis - J.E. Vance 

 

Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis - J.E. Vance got a lot of press right after the 2016 presidential election, but it took me until now to listen to it as an audiobook.  As advertised, Hillbilly Elegy discusses the plight of  whites of Appalachia in the story of one family told by the son who "made it" and moved away.  Like many personal narratives, I think Hillbilly Elegy would have made a wonderful long-form article, but the full  book was a bit thin and repetitive.  While Hillbilly Elegy does a good job of personalizing one segment of the white working class and their struggles, I found it long on anecdote and short on rigorous analysis that would have deserved the reviews saying that it explained the appeal of Mr. Trump to these voters who swung the election. 

 

The Woman in Cabin 10 - Ruth Ware 

 

My IRL book club read The Woman in Cabin 10 - Ruth Ware for August.  After procrastinating starting it, I did finish it in time for the book club meeting, due in part to insomnia the night before the meeting.  I didn't find the protagonist appealing, but once the story got going, the pages turned.  The opinion of the book club was that The Woman in Cabin 10 was the suspenseful/thriller-like story that we were expecting for our previous selection Before the Fall - Noah Hawley.

 

Tinker - Wen Spencer  

 

My husband has been trying to get me to read Tinker - Wen Spencer for over a year.  My younger son devoured the series this summer.  I brought the opening volume of this urban fantasy-like series based on the premise that an orbital gate transfers a near-future Pittsburgh to the planet of the Elves on vacation with me. Tinker had some rough edges and Mary-sue-like moments, but I was right, it did make a good vacation read.  I am curious to see where the series goes, but not quite sure how it might fit into Halloween Bingo (while you could stretch and call elves cryptozoological and there is a murder, at least this first book doesn't fit the suspense/mystery/horror requirement).

 

Sing, Unburied, Sing: A Novel - Jesmyn Ward 

 

I've been intentionally trying to read more books by African-American authors.  So after seeing glowing reviews, I started the 2017 National Book Award winner Sing, Unburied, Sing: A Novel - Jesmyn Ward. I can't articulate why, but the book just didn't grab me (The extended episode with the car-sick little girl was the penultimate straw). So, despite feeling that Sing Unburied Sing is something that I should have read, and a book that would be good to be conversant with as part of cultural literacy, I guiltily decided to DNF. 

 

 Leviathan Wakes - James S.A. Corey  

 

The rest of the family has also devoured Leviathan Wakes - James S.A. Corey this summer.  DH is on book 4 of the series and older son is up to book 6.  I started Leviathan Wakes late last week.  After getting about 50 pages in on August 31st, I decided to throw it back onto the someday/maybe pile and move on to Halloween Bingo selections instead.

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2017-10-14 02:48
DNF: Songs of Willow Frost
Songs of Willow Frost - Jamie Ford

Slow start and just not grabbing me. William and Charlotte are finally about to leave the orphanage, so I should probably stick it out a bit longer, but all I can think of is the Halloween Bingo Books I could be reading instead.

 

Maybe I'll try again between November 1st and the author visit...or then again, I may cancel on the author visit because there's a conflicting event the same night.

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2017-10-05 02:21
Reading progress update: I've listened 167 out of 704 minutes.
The Hate U Give - Angie Thomas,HarperAudio,Bahni Turpin

Absolutely loving this! (Though simultaneously feeling uncomfortable in exactly the way the author intended). 

 

Bahni Turpin's performance is wonderful so far.

 

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
text 2017-09-26 03:40
Reading progress update: I've listened 30 out of 704 minutes.
The Hate U Give - Angie Thomas,HarperAudio,Bahni Turpin

We have a winner for my new audiobook!!!  Finished the first chapter and I'm hooked (even though I know that tragedy is just about to strike).

 

Not quite sure how to fit The Hate U Give into Halloween Bingo.

 

The most obvious match is for

 

Which is nicely placed on my card.  But I think it could also fit 

 

 

 

My first hesitation is that Murder Most Foul breaks the pattern I was following (and it's an easy square to fill).

 

My second hesitation is that I'd originally earmarked Diverse Voices for

 

Songs of Willow Frost - Jamie Ford 

 

While Songs of Willow Frost doesn't really fit the Halloween Categories, I'm hoping to have it read by mid-October for a book discussion at my local library. I absolutely loved Hotel at the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, so I'm apprehensive about starting this, especially as the reviews are mixed. 

 

I wonder if Songs of Willow Frost can fit the Amateur Sleuth square?  Might have to read it to find out.

 

 

 

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-07-24 23:51
All American Boys
All American Boys - Brendan Kiely,Jason Reynolds

All American Boys follows two young men - one African American, one Caucasian - after an incident of racist police brutality.  Rashad, who is innocent, is beaten severely enough to be hospitalized by a White police officer who claimed he was stealing a bag of chips from a convenient store.  Quinn observes the incident and then struggles with whether to let people know that he was there.

 

Set in a generic small city or large town named Springfield, the story could be taking place anywhere in today’s America.  I’ve been hearing about this book from teacher and librarian bloggers since its release in 2015 and thought it would be a good fit for the optional 4th of July Booklikes-opoly Americana book selection.

 

Co-authored by African American author Jason Reynolds and Caucasian author Brendan Keily, All American Boys could qualify as an #OwnVoices book.  However, I feel like All American Boys was written more as a parable to explain to Caucasian readers why this topic is important than as a book for African American readers to see themselves.  While I found the book compelling, at times All American Boy almost crosses the line to polemic and the moralizing is a bit too blatant to these adult eyes.

 

In the end, All American Boys is a timely memorial to Trayvon Martin, Freddie Gray, Michael Brown, Tarika Wilson, Keith Childress and the countless other young African Americans who are disproportionately dying at the hands of police. Despite my quibbles, All American Boys admirably serves as a potential avenue to start the conversation with young adults about this complex topic.

More posts
Your Dashboard view:
Need help?