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Search tags: crowdsourced-a-badass-booklikes-booklist
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review 2020-04-18 20:47
This was unexpected
True Grit - Donna Tartt,Charles Portis

The essay by Donna Tartt at the end is worth a read. 

 

I would never have picked up this book on my own, so thank you, Lillelara, for suggesting it. I love Mattie Ross, and found the ending of this book quite touching, indeed.

 

People love to talk. They love to slander you if you have any substance. They say I love nothing but money and the Presbyterian Church and that is why I never married. They think everybody is dying to get married. It is true that I love my church and my bank. What is wrong with that? I will tell you a secret. Those same people talk mighty nice when they come in to get a crop loan or beg a mortgage extension! I never had the time to get married but it is nobody’s business if I am married or not married. I care nothing for what they say. I would marry an ugly baboon if I wanted to and make him cashier. I never had the time to fool with it. A woman with brains and a frank tongue and one sleeve pinned up and an invalid mother to care for is at some disadvantage, although I will say I could have had two or three old untidy men around here who had their eyes fastened on my bank. No, thank you! It might surprise you to know their names

 

I'm not sure if it is worth tracking down the newest adaptation, because I don't want to watch a movie that focuses on Rooster - he's the supporting character here. It's Mattie Ross who is the star. She is an epic character in the way that Jane Eyre or Scout Finch are epic - a unique voice that can carry a story as effortlessly as if it were a feather. She jumps off the page.

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review 2019-11-12 19:25
One of this year's Christmas mysteries
Duck the Halls - Donna Andrews

I had a little bit of a hard time rating this book because I liked it, but I also think that it is one of those series that will grow on me since it seems to be so character driven.

 

I usually don't like jumping into series in the middle, but these books are pretty expensive for kindle, and, while my library has most of them, the first one has entered some sort of parallel universe where it is apparently infinitely unavailable. It's Schrodinger's book, but it pretty much only does not exist. I decided to just say screw it, and start with book #16, which may not have been ideal.

 

I get the sense that the crime involved is really secondary to the characters, and I don't know the characters yet. I was trying to explain it to my husband, and came up with "The Northern Exposure of murder mystery series" but set in Virginia, not Alaska. Lots of eccentric, quirky characters who do eccentric and quirky things. I spent the entire book trying to figure out what Meg Langslow does, and I'm still not sure. Something churchy, but not a pastor or rector or anything? She has an office in a church - I figured out that much.

 

Anyway, I feel like I need to read more. I liked the characters I met, even if there was a lot happening that was confusing to me. I can't get Murder with Peacocks, apparently, but I can get Murder with Puffins, which is book 2.

 

MBD, what do you think? I already have two other Meg Langslow Christmas mysteries: Six Geese A-Slayin' and Lark, The Herald Angels Sing, checked out. Should I return them, and start at the beginning, or should I just go on as I have begun with the scattered approach and expect that everything will start to make more sense about five books in?

 

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review 2019-09-03 04:51
The Handmaid's Tale
The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood

This was a reread - I first read this book around the time of publication, maybe 1987 or 1988. My daughter read it in high school, so I had it in my kindle library, and decided that I did need to revisit it before The Testaments is released later this month.

 

This is not a book to love because it is such a difficult and terrible read. Atwood constructs the book as a retrospective, the historical notes at the back tell us that Offred's story is discovered at the bottom of an old trunk, recorded onto cassette tapes like the tapes that held the mix tapes I made for, and received from, friends in 1988.

 

I was in college when Atwood published The Handmaid's Tale. It seemed impossible to me then. More impossible than it does now.

 

I find myself hating Gilead like it's a real place, and the Commander, and Serena Joy. and the Aunts. Like all of the Serena Joys who really existed - Phyllis Schlafly and her ilk, and the Commanders, who are real, too, who impose rules on others that they have no intention of following. 

 

This is why I didn't want to reread The Handmaid's Tale. It hits too close to home, cuts too close to the bone. It speaks of a world that wants to exist - that already exists in the minds of plenty of men, and even a few delusional and traitorous women, who want to subvert law and justice to make it so - and that scares the living shit out of me. I haven't watched one minute of the television show, because the thought of it makes my stomach roil.

 

I am half-afraid to read the sequel. We leave Offred - June - stepping into a van and the end the book knowing only that she must have survived to create the tapes, and that, some 200-odd years later, Gilead no longer exists. It's been swept away.

 

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review 2019-08-27 00:48
My new obsession
Their Lost Daughters - Joy Ellis

I've listened to three of these audiobooks in about a week. I just started the fourth one, and then I'll be caught up until the release of the 5th in October.

 

Richard Armitage is a god among men. 

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