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review 2017-05-07 02:49
Comeback by Dick Francis
Comeback - Dick Francis

I've never read a book by this author and I must not have thought I'd like it because I kept putting off reading it.  This book has been on my "to be read list" for years!  I recently joined a group in the discussion threads at Paperbackswap.com called This Book Has Been on My TBR Long Enough.  They start a new thread each month and everyone digs out a book that has been languishing around for the longest and commits to reading it. Many times we find the book was a lot better than we expected it to be.  This is true for my pick for May.

 

I thought this was a good book even though it took me a bit to get used to the different British lingo. I guess I haven't watched enough BBC TV. Peter Darwin works for the Civil Service and is given a new assignment in Gloucestershire, England where he lived as a child. His mother worked as a secretary at the horse races then so he grew up around them and had wanted to race himself one day. He is interested in seeing his old neighborhood again. He befriends a man there named Ken that is a local Vet and surgeon to the racehorses. He confides in Peter that he is worried about his reputation because recently several horses have died unexpectedly during or after surgery. As Peter begins to learn more about this mystery he is also recognizing names and places from when he was a child. Things begin to get more serious when part of the Vet clinic burns and a body is found inside. More horses die mysteriously and Peter has to figure something out fast before there is nothing left of Ken's career.

 

I noticed that Peter is quite the ladies man although there aren't any sex scenes. Even the woman that was described as being less attractive or built like a man with fuzz on her lip etc was someone he was attracted to. This is a minor part of the story.  There are a few f-bombs but not a lot.  

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text 2017-04-30 00:57
Book Diet

I have way too many books.  I just organized them last month.  I had books in every room and in stacks on the floor or boxes in the garage.  I wanted to get them all out so I could get to them easier.  It was a huge mess for a while but I finally got them all sorted and most of them shelved.  I ended up getting a few of those wooden crates from the craft store to use as a temporary shelf for some.  I got all of them listed on goodreads.com and I made a shelf called "books I own" so I could know what I had by looking at the app. That helped a lot and now I don't buy duplicates anymore.  I also made shelves that help me know where to find a book.  

 

Since I've gotten all of my books organized I've been trying to read the books I don't plan to keep so I can make space and get those books on the crates onto my shelves. The problem is I keep seeing books that interest me and getting them.  So far I have acquired more books than I have parted with so I've decided I need to go on a book diet.  

 

I always do better with diets when I keep track of calories.  I decided to make a plan for losing book weight.  Starting May 1st I'm going to consider myself at zero and then, every time I get a new or used book I'm going to count the weight of the book as a gain. Both Amazon.com and pbs.com tell how much books weigh and I can also use my kitchen scale.  Any book I part with can be listed as a loss in oz/lbs.  Library books and ebooks will not count since they don't take up permanent space.  I will just keep track in a notebook.  

 

I really think this will give me the incentive I need to get reading and making room for those books needing shelf space.  After that, I can just make sure I only get books when I have room for them.  

 

Wish me luck!

 

DJ

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review 2015-01-20 15:49
Bite Size Review: The Darkest Night by Gena Showalter
The Darkest Night - Gena Showalter

The Darkest Night is one of my favorite books to re-read. It combines a mythological world that is unique to the growing genre, sizzling sex that never ever gets old, and characters that continue to delight. Maddox and Ashlyn make a dynamite couple! Showalter was smart to start this series with such a compelling story line. If you’re a fan of paranormal romance and you haven’t given The Lords of the Underworld a shot, what are you waiting for?!

Source: onecurvyblogger.com/2015/01/19/bite-size-reviews-1
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text 2014-09-06 04:15
THIFT STORE/OLLIES HAUL + 3 SWAP BOOKS + 1 GIVEAWAY BOOK & MORE! *u*

So, a week or so ago, I went out thrift shopping with my mother and found a load of great stuff--mostly fiction. And then, some time after, my dad and I found this place called Ollies, which sells bargain books. A lot of YA titles, but I did find some interesting ones.

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Oh my GOSH!
When I found Sorcery and Cecilia, I literally squealed...in front of everyone..in the middle of the shop. Don't judge me. WSS was just stuck in between two random books at Ollies, and it looked so lonely, I felt the need to take it home. It may be just a summarizing of the story which everyone knows and I love, but I'm hoping I enjoy it anyway.
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I found the second Temeraire series book--I do own the first but have not yet read it, but I found this and I just could not pass it up--now I'll be able to read both of them together. Beauty by Robin McKinley had been sitting on my PBS wishlist for quite a while and it was offered up to me when I actually had a credit, unlike usual, where I have to turn down dozens of wishlist books because I'm lacking in creditz. Woe is me. It's a retelling of Beauty and The Beast, one of my favourite fairytales.
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Two classics that I have never read--how exciting. Just your average paperbacks, but I'm happy I can read them now. I've always loved anything to do with sailing--maritime is one of favourite genres and yet I have so much in that area to read--The Aubrey/Martin series, Moby Dick, and the Hornblower saga, among others. I love this cover and I've been told it's a very good book, and I'm an addict for the classics.
As much as I dislike this "looks like a Halloween costume" cover, I've heard mixed things about The Scarlet Letter and it sounds like a good book.
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I found two Puffin classics at Ollies: Kim by Rudyard Kipling, the same guy who wrote The Jungle Books, which I have also not read. {On a side note, imagine that little black and white face peeking out at you from behind little red leather books--wouldn't you pick him up?} I also found The Phoenix and The Carpet by E. Nesbit, who I only just found out was EDITH Nesbit. *facepalm* Forgetting that stupidity, I am happy to report that the book that comes before Phoenix is also available as a Puffin Classic- Five Children and It, which has now gone on my Wishlist. Very excited for these. {I fear I say that about almost every book, get used to it}.
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Yet another classic I have yet to read, I found this little red hardback right in front of Kim at Ollies--there were a bunch to collect, including Jane Eyre, Little Women, a lot of Dickens and The Woman In White, all of which I already own. A nice little copy with a ribbon bookmark, my only complaint is that the illustrations are extremely blurry--I assume because of that that this is a scanned copy. At least I can read it now. Then I found a Readers Digest Select Editions {no, I don't collect these, because what's the fun in only having parts of novels?} that includes: Letter From Home by Carolyn Hart, PS I Love You by Cecelia Ahern, The Promise of A Lie by Howard Roughan, and the reason I got this in the first place, The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time by Mark Haddon. I've heard many things about "Curious Incident.." and I've been well....curious to read it. :P There's interesting mini-bios, afterwords and interviews after each chunk of their novels, giving insight into the author and the story, which is nice.
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I won "Songs For Ophelia" on Goodreads giveaway, and it was sent signed by Theodora herself. She also sent me a sweet card with a bird on it, thanking me. It's a small collection of fantasy poetry by her, and from I've read so far, they're lovely.
I've been dying to read the Gormenghast Trilogy for a while, on recommendation of many many people. Thank you so much to a LibraryThing member from my Virago Modern Classics group from sending this to me all the way from the UK! Another plus is that the actor from the mini-series, Jonathan Rhys Meyers is on the cover, and while it's a moderately evil face, it's still a hot face. :P
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A modern cover of a Virago Modern Classic sent to me from a member of the VMC group on LibraryThing. =D
The Elric Saga, I believe, is a series of six books. The one I found at the thrift store is an omnibus edition of the first three {what a great cover!} and I know there's a second omnibus just as beautiful of the last three, I just need to find it {if I like it, that is.} High fantasy is more in my taste, so I should enjoy it.
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Attracted by the lovely cover, I found A Country Life at the first thrift store I visited. It's a collection of insights and memories of Roy Strongs time in the English country with his wife. It severely piqued by interest, so I snatched it up like the book gobbler I am. In a similar vein, and for the same "loved the cover" reasons {being an Anglophile helps a lot, too} I found "My Love Affair With England" by Susan Allen Toth, a travelers memoirs about her time there. This will be the perfect book with a cup of camomile and some biscuits--the British meaning of biscuits that is.
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Sons of Moriarty is the first thing I spotted at Ollies, being the Holmesian I am. It is yet another collection of further adventures of Holmes, edited by Loren D. Estleman. It includes Anne Perry, Adrian Conan Doyle and the man himself, among others. It is authorized by the Doyle estate, which gives me hope that they are well selected stories.
Speaking of mysteries, I found a book that has long been in my TBR pile {or mountain, rather} and a sentence of the inner flap made me pick it up " "To Auriel, I will give the gift of gold..." So begins the letter that young Ned Warriner possesses, stuffed inside the pages of a leather bound book" Enough said. It's set is 1609.
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I was so happy to find I Never Promised You A Rose Garden! The cover is amazing and I've been told to read it over and over again by almost everyone I've met, as they said I could relate to it. It's the story of a mentally ill girl who creates a fantasy world inside her head, refusing to come to terms with reality, and the doctor who helps her. A vintage copy, I found it right beside Indian In The Cupboard, {also a nice cover} a children's classic I have never read. It should be a short sweet read.
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I found these two together, as if they were meant for my shelf. Secondary to Regency and Victorian Eras, I love anything arthurian, medieval or renaissance themed. I've heard that Sharon key Penman is the queen of writing historical fiction in this period, so when I saw this I decided that it would be my first by her. I hope that it lives to the promise of the epic cover. Gilt, with its beautifully embossed cover, is a YA novel of love and betrayal during the times of Henry VIIII. {Can you expect anything else in that court?} From what I've seen on Goodreads, it has reasonably low ratings, but I'll give it go anyway.
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These two I only picked up for the covers, and I'm very unsure about. The first being what I'm guessing is a mystery in 1950s New Orleans and the second being a post-apocalyptic fantasy about a demon girl that's got archangels and stuff? *shrugs* I won't be reading these for some time, as I'm starting my Virago Modern Classics marathon soon, but I'll definitely give them a chance.
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Another YA. From the gist of the inner flap, I'm hoping that it's a historical fantasy about a girl who's a witch. The cover reminds me of Ophelia from Hamlet. {Here's to hoping she doesn't meet the same fate!} It's the first in a series. The Blood Of Flowers is a historical fiction novel about a girl who weaves carpets in 17th century Persia. I hope it's wonderful.
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And lastly, my two books from PBS. Lady's Maid is a historical fiction novel about the fictional maid of Elizabeth Barrett-Browning and Robert Browning, the famous Victorian poet lovers. I'm ecstatic to read this as well as A Good Woman, a novel set in 1912, about a woman's experiences with the Titanic sinking, love and the First World War. These books are totally me.

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text 2014-01-31 20:08
New Book Arrival: The Right to Write - An invitation and Initiation into the Writing Life by Julia Cameron
The Right to Write: An Invitation and Initiation into the Writing Life - Julia Cameron

Got the last of a long list of "pending" books in the mail today, so it may be a while before I make another "new book" entry. That's OK -- I was starting to feel mighty spoiled!

 

A good friend recommended this book to me after I asked for suggestions about books for writing as a spiritual practice. She also gave me a copy of the other book she recommended, PoemCrazy by Susan G. Woolridge, for Christmas. And my mother-in-law gave me Writing to Wake the Soul by Karen Hering for Christmas. So I am set!

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