Sunday, November 17, 2013

UPDATE: The Week that Was, and October Reads

Since my last update:
I finished listening to A Christmas Guest by Anne Perry on audiobook. It was great, and I've already started listening to the next book in these stand-alone Christmas Victorian-set books. They are simple and short, and fans of Anne Perry would love them.

I also finished Blood Safari by Deon Meyer, a mystery set in South Africa. I am reading his backlist having discovered his recent books. This was the first book with Lemmer in it, and a book I"ve been meaning to read for a few years. It was a bit of a chunkster, with over 500 pages, so it feels good to get it read.

Although I have been trying to read my own books this year, I did order two books from my favorite series': Strange Shores by Arnaldur Indridason, and Treasure Hunt by Andrea Camilleri. They arrived this week. As soon as I finish re-reading The Book Thief for my real-life book club and the movie coming out, I'm diving into one of them.

Other than books and reading:
Report marks were due today, so some frantic marking has been going on. But I am done now, so can enjoy the evening getting classes ready for this week. My parents got moved, the girls were in a ringette tournament (played 3 games each) and we took down the trampoline and moved it up to the 'new' house. Another showing of the house tomorrow, which means cleaning tonight. 

Books Read in October
68. Her Fearful Symmetry - Audrey Niffenegger
Started very promising, creepy ghosts and twins abounding, London setting with Highgate Cemetery. But the young girls who moved to London were strange, with absolutely no coping or life skills. A terrible decision by adults set in motion the finale which I wasn't as impressed with. Selfish people.

69. The Woman Upstairs - Claire Messud (audiobook)
This one has a funny story with it. (For an excellent actual review, see Bellezza's review) I had this on my iPhone, and was cutting it close to finish before it was automatically deleted off my phone. Too close. With only a little over one hour to listen to, poof, gone. And it was so popular at the library, that I couldn't renew it, couldn't get a hard copy (30+ in line). Eventually I found that the CDs were only out with one person who thankfully returned it early so I could listen to the ending. It was one of those books that builds up the entire narrative to the shocking ending that happens on the last page or so. 

70. Nemesis - Jo Nesbo
The second book in the Harry Hole, Swedish detective book. He's broken, he's not a team player, but he inspires loyalty in some around him. Good series, and I'll continue.

What's new with you?

Monday, November 11, 2013

UPDATE: September reads

Since my last update:
Well, my last 'update' or post was the end of August. Yikes! My reading actually hasn't been that great. In September I read:

63. Mr Churchill's Secretary - Susan Elia MacNeal (audiobook)
Plucky American, with British background (secrets abound!) begins work in Churchill's office. Her smarts (math major at MIT) get her involved in espionage and multiple mysteries. I'll try another.

64. Death Angels - Ake Edwardson
Scandi-crime mystery set in Sweden. It was good? but so long ago now that details are fuzzy.

65. Transatlantic - Colum Mccann
Interesting book with several seemingly unconnected narratives that came together rather coolly in the end. Most were based on true events to some extent, but I don't imagine were so connected in real life.

66. The Savage Garden - Mark Mills
I read this one for my Book Club. It was an okay mystery, set in 1950s Italy, but there was a mystery from the 1700s as well. We were split on it - one loved it, one liked, but two of us were not as impressed. Could have been better use of the two mysteries - maybe a parallel telling? Plus, the use of the word Velcro took me right out of the story and to Wikipedia to check for an anachronism. It worked, but barely.

67. The Treatment - Mo Hayder (audiobook)
Oh, Jack Caffrey, I'm quite liking you. Also, the way the narrator said 'Jack' is quite stuck in my brain. Mo Hayder pushes the limits of my squeamishness, but Jack Caffrey is a wonderfully flawed hero. More please.

The best of September was definitely The Treatment.
I'll save October reads for next week's update.

Other than books and reading:
We are planning to sell our house and buy my parent's house (same neighbourhood, but larger and newer home) so have been oh so busy getting our house ready to sell (decluttering 18 years worth of living in this house) and helping my parents move. My mother broke her ankle in the middle of all this, so even more to do. Plus my own kids and their sports (softball, field hockey, ringette, volleyball were the fall sports) and working full time. Add an unhealthy interest in stupid Facebook games and I am actually amazed I even read as much as I did.

Chrisbookarama wrote a great post today about Commenting and Book Blogging. I'm guilty as well, and haven't even been blogging. Her post, as well as those who post these weekend update type of posts (suziqoregon and sueysays) have inspired me to at least try an update once a week. Hopefully, I'll be back next week. Good to see you all again.