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photo 2020-02-12 12:54

I'm working on offloading more stuff (books, DVDs - things taking up shelf space) from my collection, and being more accurate about their thickness measurements so that LibraryThing can tell me exactly how much shelf space I've freed up.


Yay, my offloaded stack is now as high as a garden gnome! That's 17 items so far, 1 recycled (an ARC, because I don't sell those or donate them to be added to library collections) and the other 16 donated. I have no idea what final number I'm aiming for, but ideally the stack will be at least a couple feet taller than the stack of books I'll likely be bringing back from the 2020 Book Bonanza.

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review 2019-06-22 01:12
Out in Nov 2019
And Go Like This: Stories - John Crowley
Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via a Librarything giveaway. I did a happy dance when I found out I won.

Many of my favorite authors I have discovered due to Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling. John Crowley is one of those writers. I first read Little, Big. Eventually, I read his Aegypt sequence. He is one those fantasy writers that people who don’t read much fantasy put in literature because for some reason they think literature isn’t fantasy. (Yeah, I don’t know why they think that either).

This collection of short fiction includes stories that have, for the most part, been already published, and if it has a theme, it is about the power reading and the story. In some ways, it reminds me of Dinesen’s Anecdotes of Destiny, another collection of stories about stories.

The collection opens with “The Girlhood of Shakespeare’s Heroines” which starts as a story about a theatre intern and morphs into something far more powerful. But honesty, you are most likely going to want to read it for the scene where Beatrice (of Much Ado) confronts pirates. The story makes use not only of a book about the heroines, but also about the authorship debate.

It is followed by a very short story, “In the Tom Mix Museum”. While the shortest one in the collection, it is also a master class in how a story does not have to be long to be powerful and to say much.

The title story, “And Go Like This”, takes the rather interesting idea of NYC’s rooms and overpopulation. The ending sequence is just beautifully rendered. It is followed by “Spring Break” which quite frankly is disturbing on so many levels – but not in a bad read type of way. It has to do with how learning and reading have changed since the rise of the internet – in particular websites like Twitter or Facebook. It isn’t so much fake news that is being looked at but the lack of reading critically and in depth – and important aspect of storytelling.

It is followed by “The Million Monkeys of M Borel” which is a wonderful story about how we read and why the device or format we use is important. It too is one of those stories with a particularly beautiful ending. If you are a reader, this is the type of story that will speak to your story. A somewhat similar point pops in the interlinked stories that make up “Mount Auburn Street”.

“Conversation Hearts” is perhaps the story that most directly confronts storytelling. Not only because the story is about a family where the woman is an author but because Crowley makes use of tropes that populate movies but twists them.

Strangely, I found the last two stories the least interesting. They are not bad. “Flint and Mirror” has Dee in it and “Anosognosia” is a neat story about creation and reality. This is also true of “This is Our Town”.

But the overwhelming theme of the stories is that of love for stories. It makes this collection a thumping good read (to borrow a phrase) for any reader.
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url 2018-12-13 15:18
12 Days of LibraryThing Scavenger Hunt

This is one of the few LibraryThing scavenger hunts that does NOT give you the possibility of upgrading to a lifetime membership, but if you have an account you do get a chance to win LibraryThing coasters or a LibraryThing tote bag. I enjoyed hunting around on the site, so I'll be participating.

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url 2018-09-19 17:03
Scavenger Hunt - Win a free LibraryThing lifetime membership

It's Talk Like a Pirate Day, and to celebrate, LibraryThing is holding a scavenger hunt. If you solve five of the riddles and find their corresponding LibraryThing pages, you'll be upgraded to a free lifetime membership.


LibraryThing has a bit of a learning curve, but I like using it to back up my reviews (unlike Booklikes, you can export your catalog) and keep track of my book collection (both what I have and where it's located). At any rate, if you want to give it a go, this is a nice way to get a lifetime membership so there aren't any limitations on how many books you can add to your catalog. Basic free memberships are limited to only 200 books, or whatever else you choose to catalog.

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review 2018-07-10 20:18
On Bone Bridge
On Bone Bridge - Maria Hoey

As a child Kay Kelly had always envied Violet-May Duff - she was pretty and she was privileged. As new friends Kay is welcomed into the grand old Duff house. She is charmed by Violet-May's younger sister, Rosemary-June. She takes a liking to Mr. Duff, is intrigued by Mrs. Duff. And she falls hopelessly in love with Violet-May's older brother, Robbie. It all seems too good to be true. And Kay finds out one September afternoon that it is, when the three young girls take baby Alexander Duff for a walk.

Kay Kelly is now in her thirties and when her path crosses with the Duff family once again, it doesn't take her long to realize something is wrong. Kay has to go through what happened that day long ago on Bone Bridge and face the terrible truth.

This started off good. It's divided into book one and book two. Book one is when Kay and Violet-May were younger and how quiet Kay Kelly is accepted into Violet-May's very different world. I found their lives interesting and I wanted to know what exactly happened on Bone Bridge. I just could not get into book two when everyone is grown up and terrible things happen and the truth finally comes out. I found it so long and filled with nothing. It was boring. By the time everything came out in the open I didn't care. And the ending felt extremely rushed.

I won a copy through LibraryThing. Thank you to Poolbeg Press for my copy.

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