Monday, January 8, 2018

They Are Prying Christmas From My Cold Hands

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?
All right, I have put away many of the Christmas decorations. The stockings are stuff in a box with care, the fancy laser lights no longer decorate my ceiling through the blinds, the decorations the kids made in preschool are off the windows.

The wreath is still on the door. I'm contemplating getting a wreath box for it, but that means measuring it. Also a few of the decorative mugs have candy in them, so I have to deal with that before stuffing them away. And I need the tall boy to take off the last of the outside tree decorations. Then the best holiday will officially be over and the long dreary winter can march on into the distance, unwelcome and unending. Rah!

This weekend was my friendly book club, and as is traditional in January we watched a movie. We picked Murder on the Orient Express, the old one, and then I had brought along the BBC series version so we watched the end of that as well. It was fun to compare what we liked and what was effective across all versions (most of us had also seen the current version as well). Next month we reading Seanan McGuire's Discount Armageddon, because she's the guest of honor at FOOLSCAP and I'm the captain of that this year.

I still have piles of last years Cybils, some started and some just glaring at me. The library tells me that the first of next year's are waiting for me. Currently Reading is around 31 as a result.

The Book Date does a weekly roundup of what people are reading, want to read, or have read each week called It's Monday! What Are You Reading that I'm going to sign up for. There's also a version that is kidlit focussed.  I'll go look to see what everyone else was reading at either Teach Mentor Text or UnLeashing Readers.

This Week I started:

Charmed and DangerousThe Borden Murders: Lizzie Borden and the Trial of the CenturyA History of Murder (An Old Maids of Mercer Island Mystery #3)Lucky Penny

Charmed and Dangerous, edited by Jordan Price. This anthology has a story by KJ Charles, whose books I always enjoy, so I thought I'd see who she sits in company with.

The Borden Murders, Sarah Miller. Cybils Non-Fiction.

A History of Murder, Lynn Bohart. My sister met this author a while back.

Lucky Penny, Ananth Hirsh. Cybils Graphic Novel.

I finished:

Blood Brother: Jonathan Daniels and His Sacrifice for Civil RightsForged in BloodFaith, Volume 1: Hollywood & Vine
Charmed and DangerousA History of Murder (An Old Maids of Mercer Island Mystery #3)

Blood Brother, Rich Wallace & Sandra Neil Wallace. Cybils NonFiction. The big pages gave lots of room for text and pictures, although sometimes the bold colors of the pages made it hard to decipher the type. It was interesting to compare the chapters on Selma and voter registration with March which I read last week. It's an interesting take on a short life interrupted by racial hate. I find it easier to be interested in the people who grew up in the area than the ones who came down from the North, but the authors managed to ground this guy enough.

Forged In Blood, ed. Michael Z. Williamson. It's fun to see other people play in a known universe, especially with the theme of a battle-thirsty sword tying them together. Nice to know that even into the future some problems can be solved by a sharp blade. Makes me wonder if the alien stuff with show up in Williamson's Freehold books.

, Jody Houser. Cybils YA Graphic Novel. It's always a pleasure for me to read a comic book in which I don't get all the characters confused. It helps that these people have diverse racial features and body types. And I liked the mix of super-hero problems (plant-people aliens taking over the world) and mundane issues (boring job, high rents).

Charmed and Dangerous, edited by Jordan Price. I ended up liking all the stories, even the ones that took a few pages to lure me in. I think I'll try some more of Jordan Hawk's stuff, and maybe some of the others.

A History of Murder, 
Lynn Bohart. This was a cheerful story of some women a bit older than me running their businesses and solving crimes, although they have the advantage of helpful ghosts making themselves known when danger threatens. I think I'll pick up some of the author's other stuff; it's fun to read books so grounded in the area.

Bookmarks moved in:

Alliance of Equals (Liaden Universe, #19)A Promise of Fire (Kingmaker Chronicles, #1)Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American RightThe Homesman
Treasured by Thursday (The Weekday Brides, #7)The Serpent KingMs. Bixby's Last Day

Alliance of Equals, Sharon Lee & Steve Miller. Episode 29-31. I'm a bit confused by listening to a podcast about the next book in the series; I have to remember what I'm not supposed to know yet.

A Promise of Fire, Amanda Bouchet. Vaginal Fantasy old pick. I really wish the author had left out the romance, which is awful. Kidnapping someone is not sexy. Everytime she "fights her attraction" I just want to get her into counseling -- why is she into a guy who abuses her? Does the author authentically not realize this is a problem? Stockholm syndrome is the opposite of hot!

Strangers In Their Own Land, Arlie Hochschild. This book does a good job (to me) of explaining the mind set and stories of Republicans. It's a shame that their convictions are based on lies instead of reality; I'm not quite open-minded enough to think that conclusions based on bad data are as valid as reality-based ones.

The Homesman
, Glendon Swarthout. A Reading My Library audio started on my drive home. I have spoiled myself by reading up on the ending, and I expect it to be awful. I'm already noticing how the author is twisting things around so that the characters don't seem real. We know whatever the guy does will turn out well, and any idea the lady has will be dumb.

Treasured By Thursday
, Catherine Bybee. My next RML book. I would have more patience with the "he blackmailed her into marriage, but love finds a way" plot if I weren't already reading a book about a guy who confuses coercion and consent in a deeply creepy way.

The Serpent King, Jeff Zentner. Cybils YA. I think this book is more about all three kids, not just the one with the snake-charming dad. I wonder what that means about the title.

Ms Bixby's Last Day, John David Anderson. Cybils MG. I hope we have reached the nadir of the kids' day, because things look pretty dire. I could weep for that cheese cake.

These I'm barely reading; I use them as palate cleansers between books I'm actually reading.

KenilworthA Traitor to Memory (Inspector Lynley, #11)The Quantum Universe: Everything That Can Happen Does HappenSammy Keyes and the Art of DeceptionReading and Learning to Read

Kenilworth, Sir Walter Scott. Queen Elizabeth is Suspicious. What's her name is a ninny.

A Traitor to Memory, Elizabeth George.

The Quantum Universe, Brian Cox.

Sammy Keyes and the Art of Deception, Wendelin Van Draanen.

Reading and Learning to Read, Jo Anne Vaca. How vocabulary is built, and how to use that to make stories easier to access.

2018 Challenge Progress:
  1. Cybils 2017! 2/104-ish. I have ordered the first few from the library.
  2. Cybils 2016!  72/107-ish. Knocked off another graphic novel and a nonfiction. Pushed ahead in some others.
  3. Reading My Library: Have stalled on The Homesman after reading some reviews that indicate I will absolutely hate the ending. Started the next print book, Treasured by Thursday.
  4. Where Am I Reading 2017?: 2/51. Look how on-track I am this year. And I'm about to add Washington and Louisiana.

1 comment:

kmitcham said...

I picked up the Williamson at the library, but have only just started it.