blogging · Books · Uncategorized

Six degrees of separation: a new meme!

Special thanks to Luvtoread for choosing to follow me this week and introducing me to this meme – Six Degrees of Separation hosted by booksaremyfavouriteandbest, where you take one title, and link through six other titles to see where you end up.

The book for February is Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders. I haven’t read this book or even a full synopsis. In fact the main reason I’m doing this meme today is to talk about a book I’ve almost finished, so I was super glad to read Amazon describe it as ‘a moving and original father-son story’ because the book I want to discuss is a mother-daughter(s) story which is a good enough connection for me!

Between Sisters by Cathy Kelly caught me by surprise. I picked it up from the library without thinking too much about it, just to have an audiobook available for some long drives. I wasn’t overly drawn into the first half, enjoying the characters but finding some details (clothing descriptions) and writing styles (so many character perspectives) not up my alley but the second half proved to be much more than fluff listening with deeper emotional issues addressed which really impacted me. One of the topics was schizophrenia which is making me especially keen to start reading a library book I already have out –

Tell Me I’m Here by Anne Deveson. Anne writes this as mother of a son with schizophrenia and having already read her book,

Resilience (again by Anne Deveson) I trust it will be an interesting and informative read. A book I saw on another of Luvtoread posts was

Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl which from my understanding also addresses resilience and which I’m also very keen to read, particularly having had studied a bit about Frankl in my counselling studies. Another book on my tbr list which came to my attention through study is

The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat: And Other Clinical Tales by Oliver Sacks which conicidentally was again in one of luvtoreads posts on an Amazon ‘100 books to read in a lifetime’ list no. 78.

Man that was quick, six books already – I really do love this concept! From Lincoln to a hat….well fancy that :p

Lincoln's+hat

I would like to include another special thanks and shout out to Luvtoread. She’s likely to think I’m a stalker after this post, so Ami, I’d love to direct you back to my blogging resolutions from earlier this  year here and here and welcome you to your spotlight!

Ami lives in California and loves to read and enjoy life. She’s part of a bookclub and as a fellow bookclubber that automatically means she’s amazing! Not to mention she listed one of my favourite authors series in her top ten list 🙂

In her about section she writes – ‘That is what reading is about – discovering something new…Books always teach me something new. ‘ So very very true not only of books but blogs and any reading. She’s a great reviewer so be sure to check her out.

Ami, if I havn’t scared you for life with my stalkerish ways I’d love to know how you found me…I have a theory but I would love to hear from you or anyone, if you/they can remember! Thank you for visiting my blog ❤

 

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Books · reviews

WWW Wednesday 7th February 2018

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This is a meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words. It’s fun and simple, you just have to answer the three W’s: What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’ll read next? You can also join by answering and linking your blog post back on Sam’s post here

I think this is my first for the year and I certainly wasn’t planning to write a blog today! After a busy start to the week (read tiring!) I’m now refreshed from watching an episode of a new tv favourite and happily sitting next to hubby while he’s taken over the tv for the cricket leaving me free to share –

What did you recently finish reading:

Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry, the second novel in The Giver quartet. I read the first in the series at the end of last year for my Future requirement in the When Are You Reading challenge and my interest was piqued. It was a short book which created another new dystopian world which ended with so much story left to tell. I’m so funny about YA dystopian books. I’m never a big fan but as soon as I see a movie or read a book and get just a bit of a taste I do want to find out as much as possible about the worlds the author creates. I was hoping to find out what happened next in Gathering Blue but instead was given a new world to discover. Sadly I wasn’t really taken with this book except for of course the ending which after a slow book again built pace and interest so yes I will read the third book, which from other reviews seems more well liked.

 

What are you currently reading:

For anyone who met me here last year I’m still reading Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert, well it’s still sitting on my bed side table, not sure reading is an accurate description. I did read another chapter in the summer holidays but can’t imagine getting back to it again until perhaps the next summer holidays!

After Gathering Blue I thought I was going to get myself more thoroughly into My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier. I am loving the writing style of this book and want to read more but at the same time it’s not a complete page turner, hence I was happy enough yesterday to also start Have A Little Faith by Mitch Albom which is my choice for this months bookclub. I have already made notes of a few gems I want to remember. I’m confident in my decision as Albom is a reliably good read.

I also started an audiobook this week for my 6hr plus round study trip – Between Sisters by Cathy Kelly. I’m enjoying it but getting frustrated each time the author introduces a new character narrator!

What do you think you’ll read next:

If I get through my current books it’ll be a true achievement! Next bookclub is The Bells by Richard Harvell but I have until March. I also have Tell Me I’m Here by Anne Deveson out from the library which I really want to get to having read Resilience by the same author.

 

Challenge Progress Tracker

 

1940-1959 – Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel García Márquez,

The Future – Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry

 

Any bloggers out there that can help me with spacing in my blogs? Ie between paragraphs I just can’t figure it out!

blogging · Books · reviews

Holiday Reading

I was so excited about the interactions on my last post I forgot to get writing again…oops, and suddenly a fortnight has almost passed!

Truth is I’ve been busy spending time with the fam bam – we got back yesterday from a week interstate with friends. Lots of fun, laughs, tears and tantrums – don’t you just love holidaying with kids :p All in all however it was a great time away and we kept very busy, in fact I only finished my holiday book last night back at home! Indeed 20 days into January I have only finished 2 books (oh wait 3 – bcb*). I normally go into a reading frenzy during the summer holidays but this year I’ve been spreading my spare time between books, puzzles and tv. I’m finding lately after working on a computer, studying on a computer and catching up on so many awesome blogs my eyes have had enough reading. Anyone else have trouble balancing their reading choices?!

That said the two books I have finished are well worth sharing about:

Wish You Were Here by Sheridan Jobbins –

I loved that the author was Australian. I loved her honesty and reflections (even if at times they seemed to go round and around in circles), I enjoyed her adventures, I loved her car and the new man. In some ways a bit of a cliche post divorce memoir in others completely unique. I loved learning more about America and the life of this interesting woman.

The author herself described it as “basically a rom-com memoir” about how she met her husband. “After leaving my first marriage, I decided to buy a big red car and drive around America, I would spend six weeks driving one way, and six weeks driving back,” she said. “Halfway through I did a stopover in London to visit a friend whose husband had been sick. My friend was studying with this boy and we started to have a fling. It ended up in a bit of a misunderstanding, I thought I was saying ‘I like you’ and he thought I was saying ‘join the trip’. So our third date was four weeks in a Chevy Camaro and a tent arguing across America and that is the bulk of the story.”

Definitely a good holiday read.

Secondly, The End of the Road: Becoming a Mallee Wife by Deborah Hyde –

As a fellow farmer’s wife I really enjoyed relating to much of this memoir and recommend it to anyone interested in learning more about this way of life!

I’ve also watched Big Little Lies the HBO tv series which unfortunately was a bit disappointing. It wasn’t the bits cut or added, I think it worked quite well. I don’t even really care about the ending. It just all seemed so slow to me, a lot of angst and not much action. I think having read the book ruined the build up of tension for me. Good news is that hubby enjoyed it, yay for a accurate recommendation for him!

We have one more week until school goes back but with work, meetings and school book pick up it feels like things will be back into at least half swing. Fortunately I have book club this week reviewing Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, a novella (*bcb).

Before I sign off I would like to say a  big special thanks to the FOUR beautiful bloggers who commented on my last post. Even without new content in the last 2 weeks I’ve been feeling super connected. My Spotlight Blogger for today is for “Bryce Warden” who was the first to comment last time. You can find her at  https://wasthatmyoutloudvoice.com – be ready to laugh out loud and experience some warm fuzzies too. She is a busy Mum of teens, business owner, hospice and charity volunteer. She likes mystery novels and lives in the USA experiencing the cold while I am once again sweltering in 40+ degree weather. She’s been a recent find for me but I am very much in love.

I’d love for Bryce (and YOU!) to share, if you wish, about your favourite things to do in your spare time?

Happy Reading!

Books

When Are You Reading 2017 review

According to Goodreads I read 23 books this year and 8,807 pages.

2017

I officially completed the When Are You Reading Challenge, hooray!!

Challenge Progress Tracker

Pre 1500 – The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

1500-1599 – Kitty, My Rib by E.Jane Mall

1600-1699 – Silence by Shūsaku Endō

1700-1799 – Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, also An Almond for a Parrot by Wray Delaney

1800-1899  The Luminaries – Eleanor Catton

1900-1919 – Their Sacrifice: the brave and their Bibles by John Harris

1920-1939 – The Small Woman by Alan Burgess

1940-1959 – The Stars are Fire by Anita Shreve

1960-1979 – Exposure by Helen Dunmore

1980-1999 – Attachments by Rainbow Rowel

2000-Present – Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

The Future – The Giver by Lois Lowry

 

Onwards and upwards in 2018!!

 

 

Books · study · Uncategorized

WWW Wednesday 27th September

Seems September Season is WWW Wednesday for me :p

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This is a meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words. It’s fun and simple, you just have to answer the three W’s: What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’ll read next? You can also join by answering and linking your blog post back on Sam’s post here

What did you recently finish reading:

Nothing this week, although I did finish some required chapters from my textbook Emotion-Focused Couples Therapy: The Dynamics of Emotion, Love and Power … now to start the next two chapters, not to mention journal my thoughts on them….gotta love study!

Also rated a few more kids books the children picked out from the library. What the Ladybird Heard by Julia Donaldson (who doesn’t love a glittery ladybug!) and Shearing Time by Allison Paterson particularly relevant as we did (aka the men) have been doing crutching on the farm.

What are you currently reading:

I did start Truly, Madly, Deeply by Lianne Moriarty and am already very intrigued. I loved reading Big Little Lies earlier in the year.

What do you think you’ll read next:

Brick Lane by Monica Ali is next for bookclub but although school holidays begin friday until I finish some assignments I think Blogs and Facebook will be my leisure reading.

I would truly appreciate some input though on suggestions for a book set in the 1500-1599’s for the When Are You Reading Challenge,I have nothing so far despite an ever-growing TBR…any ideas??

Happy Reading 🙂

 

Books · reviews

WWW Wednesday 20th Septemeber

Sooooo before I explain what this is all about about I just have to share….

I FINISHED Silence!!!!!!

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words. It’s fun and simple, you just have to answer the three W’s: What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’ll read next? You can also join by answering and linking your blog post back on Sam’s post.

To participate, and to see how others responded, click here

What did you recently finish reading:

Silence by Shūsaku Endō, I started reading this back in May and am so excited to have finally finished. I chose it to meet a requirement in my When Are You Reading Challenge, based on a review in my church magazine of the Martin Scorsese movie adaption but I just never got into it. I never clicked with the narrator/main character and found it a struggle to get through. I wish I could go back and start it again at a time when I could finish it in just a few sittings as I think that could have made a difference but then again maybe not.

From Goodreads – It is 1640 and Father Sebastian Rodrigues, an idealistic Jesuit priest, sets sale for Japan determined to help the brutally oppressed Christians there. He is also desperate to discover the truth about his former mentor, rumoured to have renounced his faith under torture. Rodrigues cannot believe the stories about a man he so revered, but as his journey takes him deeper into Japan and then into the hands of those who would crush his faith, he finds himself forced to make an impossible choice: whether to abandon his flock or his God….As empathetic as it is powerful, it is an astonishing exploration of faith and suffering and an award-winning classic. 

Sounds pretty good doesn’t it! I was glad to read another reviewer found it started slow, for me by the time it got a bit more interesting I was already too far over it.

Another reason I struggled with this book was although a christian I’m not catholic and so concepts of confession and symbolism of images is not as important to me and somewhat rubbed the wrong way.

Most reviews however were highly positive and this page on quotes from the book is impressive.

 

Now I don’t actually have much more to say :p

 

The other adult book I finished recently was Attachments by Rainbow Rowell which I LOVED.

What are you currently reading:

Still reading text books and not much else!

What do you think you’ll read next:

I’ve got Truly, Madly, Deeply by Lianne Moriarty lying around for when I feel on top of my study. I’d also like to find a book from the 1500’s to keep on track with my challenge – any suggestions?

 

Challenge Progress Tracker

Pre 1500 – The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

1500-1599 

1600-1699 – Silence by Shūsaku Endō

1700-1799 – Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, An Almond for a Parrot by Wray Delaney

1800-1899  The Luminaries – Eleanor Catton

1900-1919

1920-1939 – The Small Woman by Alan Burgess

1940-1959

1960-1979 – Exposure by Helen Dunmore

1980-1999 – Attachments by Rainbow Rowel

2000-Present – Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

The Future 

Books

WWW Wednesday 6th September

Gosh it’s been awhile since I’ve done one of these! (Almost 3 months)

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words. It’s fun and simple, you just have to answer the three W’s: What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’ll read next? You can also join by answering and linking your blog post back on Sam’s post.

To participate, and to see how others responded, click here

What did you recently finish reading:

Tonight I read Say Please, Louise by Keith Harvey and illustrated by Lauren Beard. My daughter chose it from the library as Louise is her middle name. It was a nice book abut learning to use manners. Whilst enjoyable it was a bit simplistic so only 3/5 stars.

My son chose Hey Mum, I Love you by Corinne Fenton, a seriously sweet book using fairly iconic animal photos to illustrate a love letter to Mum. As a Mum I’m sure I’m slight;y biased 4/5 stars 🙂

Three other picture books I read recently which inspired me to rate them on Goodreads were:

Excuse Me, I’m Trying to Read! By Mary Jo Amani – a great book set in Africa the wording got better towards the end.

Look, a Book! by Libby Gleeson – not many words in this but the illustrations show the true adventure a book can take you on.

Busting! by Aaron Blabey – this rhyming book was just so fun! I bought it to read to my son who continues to have frequent accidents, not sure it’ll help but I loved it!

What are you currently reading:

Still reading Silence by Shūsaku Endō, I just can’t get into it and I’m sure its keeping me from getting into any reading but I’m determined to eventually, one day finish it!

Also reading my textbook Emotion-Focsed Couples Therapy: The Dynamics of Emotion, Love and Power by Leslie Greenberg and Rhonda Goldman which given the current state of my marriage is either a healthy or unhealthy thing to do….

What do you think you’ll read next:

I’m pretty keen to get Matilda by Roald Dahl on audiobook to listen to with the kids in the car.

I’ll get Attachments by Rainbow Rowell for bookclub from a friend tomorrow so looking forward to that too.

Happy Reading All 🙂