Showing posts from October, 2023


First off, happy Halloween!  Happy Witch Week!!  I hope everything is suitably spooky in your neighborhood. Wow, I feel like I've done quite a bit of reading lately....but what I have not done is finish anything much.  I think I am 30 - 50% through ten or so books!  There are books all over my coffee table; it's a disaster. How Democracies Die, by Levitsky and Ziblatt  I Served the Kind of England, by Bohumil Hrabal The Cancelling of the American Mind, by Greg Lukianoff and Rikki Schlott Overreach, by Owen Matthews (oh my gosh so heavy-duty) The Lost 116 Pages, by Don Bradley A Land, by Janetta Hawkes Sexy but Psycho, by Dr Jessica Taylor  (fascinating and I think goes a bit too far) London Diary, by James Boswell  (why yes he has picked up an STD, again) Les Miserables, by Victor Hugo Junk Film: Why Bad Movies Matter, by Katharine Coldiron  (I love this book) So, I'm in kind of a ridiculous place right now.  But here are the three books I've managed to actually finis

And the Spin Number is...

   Number 2! This gives me Boswell's London Diary , which on the one hand -- yay, I get to read about London!  and on the other -- how many brothels do you suppose he will visit, and in how much detail?  If this turns out to be nothing but a list of exploited girls, I'm going to be disappointed.  I hope he does something else with his time.  We'll find out! What book did you get?          

Fall TBR Reading

 Here are some titles from my official TBR list that I just haven't written about yet!  Mexican Gothic, by Silvia Moreno-Garcia : I saved this one for October, for an official RIP read.  And wow, this is a spooky story!  It's the 1950s, and Noem í is a debutante out for a good time in Mexico City.  Her father sends her down to the countryside to check on her cousin Catalina, who married last year in a romantic whirl.  Noem í arrives at a classic Gothic scene: a mouldering family mansion on a misty mountain, and....this is a strange place.  The silver mine that gave the Doyle family their wealth has been closed down for years, the house is festooned with mold, and everyone is very strange.  Catalina seems to be ill.  Her husband Virgil is creepy, but not as creepy as his elderly father is.  Just one family member, Francis, seems friendly, if shy and something of a weak character.  As Noemi unravels the dark family history and the secrets of the house, we wonder if she and Catal

Playing Catch-Up With Autumn

Well, the world is on fire and I'm deeply upset about it, but this is not a blog about world events and politics, so let's escape for a bit with some books for the younger crowd....    Temple Alley Summer, by Sachiko Kashiwaba : This is a charming middle-grade novel translated from the Japanese.  Kazu lives in a big old house in an old neighborhood, and one night he sees a girl in a white kimono walk through.  The next day she is in his class -- and she has always been there.  Everyone but Kazu has known her for years.  And then he learns that his street used to be called Kimyo Temple Street, which implies that people can be brought back to life.  This is going to be a summer of adventure for Kazu and Akari, as they become friends and figure out what's going on. This is an unusual story, and I enjoyed it a lot.  It won the Batchelder award for translated literature.   The Last Cuentista, by Donna Barba Higuera : Petra Peña lives in New Mexico and wants to be a storyteller,

CC Spin #35!

 It's the 35th Classics Club Spin !  You know the rules.  The number will be announced this Sunday and we'll have until December 3rd to read the chosen book.  Here's the list: The Well at the End of the World, by William Morris Diary of London, by Boswell It is Acceptable (Det Gaar An), C. J. L. Almqvist  Two Years Before the Mast, by Richard Henry Dana  Amerika, by Kafka Peter the Great's African, by Pushkin No Name, by Wilkie Collins The Black Arrow, by R. L. Stevenson Ring of Bright Water, by Gavin Maxwell The Tale of Sinhue (ancient Egyptian poetry)   I Served the King of England, by Bohumil Hrabal   Phineas Finn, by Anthony Trollope It Can't Happen Here, by Sinclair Lewis Revelations of Divine Love, by Julian of Norwich Conjure Tales, by Charles Chesnutt The Duchess of Malfi, by John Webster Rob Roy, by Sir Walter Scott Second-Class Citizen, by Buchi Emecheta Sybil, by Disraeli The Leopard, by di Lampedusa I think I'd quite like to read The Black Arrow, bu