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review 2017-06-23 16:00
On Canaan’s Side ★★★☆☆
On Canaan's Side - Sebastian Barry

I had a lot I wanted to say about this book, as I had just finished it, but then I got into a long, work-related conversation with a colleague, and now I find my brain mostly empty of thoughts where this book is concerned. That, perhaps, is a good indicator of how deeply affected I was by it. Mostly how I felt, by the end, was as though I was covered in a heavy smothering blanket of depression. Perhaps that’s the point. Perhaps that was the author’s goal in writing this book. When I read “literary” novels, this seems to be how I most often feel, with the second most common emotion being impatient annoyance. The latter is most common in the ones that I’m not even able to finish reading.

 

On Canaan’s Side seems to be about grief and loss and the pointlessness of actually making human connections in life, when at the end everybody you loved is gone or has betrayed you in some way. There is some beautiful language and gorgeous descriptions of setting and emotions. The author chose to express some of these in stream-of-consciousness style of run-on sentences that literally went on as long as 1 ½ pages of text. Fortunately, these were mostly confined to the first and last few chapters, with the middle third of the book written in a snappier style that moved the plot and story (such as it was) along in a more tolerable fashion.

 

When I was a teenager, we had a saying that encompassed all the angst of that age: “Life’s a bitch, and then you die”. That’s pretty much how I felt by the end of this book.

 

Hardcover version, purchased as a circulation discard from a Friends of the Library sale. I read this for the 2017 Booklikes-opoloy challenge, for the square Trains, Planes, & Automobiles 14: Read a book that involves overseas travel, or that has a suitcase on the cover.  There is a brief description of the main character’s overseas journey from Ireland to America, and two other characters journey overseas for the Vietnam and Gulf wars.

 

Previous Updates:

6/29/17 182/272 pg

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photo 2017-06-23 01:29
The Devil's Star - Jo Nesbo,Jo Nesbø
Hector and the Search for Happiness - François Lelord
The Leopard: A Harry Hole thriller (Oslo Sequence 6) - Jo Nesbø,Don Bartlett
NOS4R2 by Joe Hill (6-Nov-2014) Paperback - Joe Hill
How to Catch a Star (10th Anniversary edition) - Oliver Jeffers
Die Trying - Lee Child
The Wrong Side of Goodbye - Michael Connelly
By Lemony Snicket The Dark (Bccb Blue Ribbon Picture Book Awards (Awards)) (First Edition) - Lemony Snicket
Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances - Neil Gaiman
Nemesis - Jo Nesbo
Booklikes-opoly
1st roll : ?8
2nd roll - Main street 14
Paradise Pier 30
Tomorrow land 36
Main Street 10
Cars Land 16
New Orleans 19
Monorail 29
Frontierland 2

Started on 15 April already. So I am a few days late. 


See details here. 

 

http://blog.booklikes.com/post/1552561/wanna-plan-a-game-it-s-booklikes-opoly-created-by-moonlight-reader-obsidian-blue  

 

Rolled dice 1st on 17 April and got 8 .  Landed at Question 8 on the board. 

So a mystery novel. Started with Jo Nesbo "The Devil's Stars" 

 

Collected $20 at Start. 

 

See how it goes. 

 

Update: 24 April.  Finished reading The Devil's Star. 522 pages. Collected $5.

 

New Total = $25

 

2nd roll dice of 7.

 

 

Get me to Main Street 14. Read a book that involves oversea travel or has a suitcase on the cover. 

 

Hector and the Search for Happiness 192 pages. 

 

30 April 2017. Read the book. Collected $2. 

 

New Total = $27. 

 

3rd roll of dice. A 10. 

 

Landed me at Water Works. "Read a book with water on the cover, or where someone turns on the waterworks (i.e., cries) because of an emotional event." 

 

 

 

Rain is water. Picked "The Leopard" by Jo Nesbo. 740 pages. 

 

Finished the book on 4 May. Collected $5. 

 

4th Roll the dice on 4 May.: 8

 

Landed in Paradise 30 Suspense book over 555 pages.  

 

Picked NOS4R2 by Joe Hill. Supernatural suspense story 692 pages. 

 

New total: $32

 

Read the book on 9 May. Collected $5.

 

New total: $37

 

5th roll on 10 May: 6 

 

Get me to Tomorrow land 36 

 

Read a book with space in the cover. 

 

Picked How to Catch a Star by Oliver Jeffers. 32 pages. 

 

Read this book. Collected $1. Roll again. 

 

New Total: $38. 

 

6th roll 12: Landed Main street 10. Collect $20 at Start. 

 

Select Die Trying by Lee Child happened in small town USA. 557 pages. 

 

New Total: $58

 

15 May. Finished Die Trying. Collect $5.

 

New total:$63. 

 

7th roll: 6

Land at Cars Land 16 

 

Picked Wrong Side of Goodbye by Michael Connelly, story happened in LA California. 400 pages. 

 

2 June: Finished the book. Add $3. 

 

New total: $66

 

8th roll: 4

 

Landed in New Orleans 19 

 

Pick a children book as I don't usually read horror. The Dark by Lemony Snicker. 40 pages. 

 

New total: $67

 

3 June 

9th roll :8

Landed Adventureland 27

Picked Trigger Warning by Neil Gaiman 308 pages

 

 

13 June 

Read Trigger Warning and collect $3 

10th roll:11

Landed Monorail 29

Have difficulty picking a book. Do not want to read Girl on a Train. Interpret that a book with car on the cover also fit. Pick "Nemesis" by Jo Nesbo 706 pages 

 

 

New total: $70

 

22 June 

Read "Nemesis". Collect $5.

11th roll:10

Passed start: Collect $20. 

Landed Frontierland 2

Pick "Redbreast" by Jo Nesbo 636 pages. 

 

New total: $95

 

 

 ******************************************

Summary

************************************

 

Started with $20

 

1st roll 17 April -8
Landed at ?8
Read "The Devil's Stars" by Jo Nesbo 522 pages.
Finished on 24 April and collected $5.
New total $25

 

2nd roll 24 April - 7
Landed on Main street 14.
Read "Hector and the Search for Happiness" 192 pages.
Finished 30 April. Collected $2.
New total $27

 

3rd roll 30 April - 10
Landed at Water Work.
Read "The Leopard" by Jo Nesbo 740 pages.
Finshed on 4 May. Collected $5.
New total $32

 

4th roll 4 May -8
Landed at Paradise 30.
Read "NOS4R2" by Jo Hill 692 pages.
Finished 9 May. Collected $5.
New Total $37

 

5th roll 10 May -6
Landed at Tomorrow Land 36.
Read "How to Catch a Star" by Oliver Jeffers. 32 pages.
Read it and collected "$1".
New total $38

 

6th roll 11 May - 12
Landed Main street 10.

Collect $20 at Start. 
Read "Die Trying" by Lee Child 557 pages.
Read on 14 May. Collected $5.

New total $63

 

7th roll 15 May -6
Landed at Cars Land 16.
Read "Wrong Side of Goodbye" by Michael Connelly 400 pages.

New total $66

 

 

8th roll 2 June - 4

Landed at New Orleans 19 

Read "The Dark" by Lemony Snicker 40 pages. 

New total $67

 

9th roll 3 June - 8

Landed Adventureland 27

Read "Trigger Warning" by Neil Gaiman 308 pages

New total:$70

 

 

10th roll 13 June: 11

Landed Monorail 29

Read "Nemesis" by Jo Nesbo 706 pages 

New total: $90

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review 2017-06-21 17:08
Review: The Right Side
The Right Side: A Novel - Spencer Quinn

Poignant, eloquent, and spellbinding!

 

Sgt. LeeAnn Hogan is at Walter Reed, recovering from the disfiguring wounds and trauma suffered in a failed military operation in Afghanistan. Disoriented, angry and scared, she takes solace in the friendship with her hospital roommate, Marci. When Marci’s suddenly dies, it sends LeeAnn adrift; signing herself out of the hospital, she takes off to an uncertain future, deciding along the way to visit Marci’s hometown in Washington State. When she arrives, she finds that Marci’s daughter, Mia, has gone missing. Feeling a responsibility to help, LeeAnn is compelled to help find the little girl, the last thread that binds her to her dead friend. Along the way, she’s forced to confront herself and her demons and start the road back to her new life.

 

The Right Side will definitely be one of my top books of 2017! More suspense than mystery, it was an fantastic read, and so hard to sum up all the things that I loved without rambling on too long! The pace was perfect, taking just the right amount of time to set up the main character and her world, not only LeeAnn’s mental state after she was wounded, but also snapshots of her formative years, providing a strong base for her reactions and experiences in the later part of the book, which made it feel more authentic and realistic. Superbly written, I was quickly drawn into LeeAnn’s struggles, I couldn’t help but admire her. Her pain, confusion and struggle is palpable, leaving me slightly uncomfortable (in a good way, if that’s at all possible!) and so grittily realistic that it’s almost like reading a true story.  I loved that Goody is a reflection of LeeAnn herself, even if she doesn't recognize it, and that sets her on a course to recover both mentally and physically. Tough, resolute and enigmatic, they make a perfect pair. The satisfyingly ambiguous ending left the door open for further adventures with LeeAnn and Goody, something I truly hope will come to be.

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review 2017-06-21 01:50
Foxglove Summer (Peter Grant/Rivers of London #5) (Audiobook)
Foxglove Summer: PC Peter Grant, Book 5 - Ben Aaronovitch,Kobna Holdbrook-Smith

Looks like this series finally got its act together! The case/mystery here was comprehensive and engaging, and the rural setting was a nice change up from the regular London beat. Also, Peter's temporary partner Dominic is a hoot! I love him and really wish he could stick around, but I'm not counting on it. 

 

Peter gets asked to help out on a case of two missing girls in case there's something supernaturally hinky about it, and of course there is. In addition to Dominic, we get the return of Beverly - who I honestly couldn't remember why she left, whoops - and she's great. 

 

Peter's also still dealing with Leslie's betrayal from the previous book, which gets no closer to being resolved. She's still with whatshisname and whatever she's doing, she knows there's no redemption for her. :( I'm theorizing she's undercover, but that's just because I like her character and don't want her permanently on the outs of the group. 

 

The pacing here was not quite as sedate in previous books, and actually manages to get up to a brisk jog in certain places, which for this series is practically a gallop. :D It kept me engaged, at least, which I can't necessarily say for previous books. 

 

Kobna is one of the few male narrators who manages to do decent female voices, and now he's doing a pretty good job at children's voices too. That's true versatility there. 

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text 2017-06-19 14:18
On Canaan's Side: 182/272 pg
On Canaan's Side - Sebastian Barry

Finally, the pace is starting to pick up. I'm starting to think I'll never be done with this book.

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