Thursday, February 07, 2019

What Are You Reading?

I didn't mean to leave everyone hanging when I said I do a book chat at a women's homeless shelter. This started out as something three of us did from the library, and we go once a month. We were originally going to lead book discussions, but that didn't work - for a good reason. By the time we go back, some of the women have transitioned to an apartment or have jobs and can't make it to the discussion. So, we changed our program, and switched to book chats. Two of us go every month, and we each take 3 books or so. We pick them up at our library book sale, or take ARCs because we leave them for the library there. And, we write short annotations to put in the book, so the women can see our comments. Sometimes, they scoop up our books. Sometimes we only have one or two women come. It varies, depending who is in the house right then, and what they're doing. Last night, I took Debbie Macomber's Blossom Street Brides, Phillip Gulley's A Change of Heart, and Lissa Redmond's The Murder Book.

What are you reading or doing this week that's book related? We'd all love to know. (I have to admit I'm in that training session all day again today, so I won't catch up until lunch time.) But, everyone else will be waiting!

14 comments:

Sharon said...

I only read one book this week. MURDER IN THE MYSTERY Suite by Ellery Adams. It has been one of those weeks..... I loved this book as much as I love her secret scone and book series. I will be reserving the next one soon.

Now I am reading THE LIGHT OVER LONDON by Julia KELLY.

Happy Reading!

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

I applaud your efforts. As the old PBS show said, "Reading is Fundamental."

As is often the case with me, I've been reading mostly short stories this week. I did finish the previously mentioned LIES COME EASY by Steven F. Havill, another in one of my favorite regional series. And I've started GIVE-A-DAMN JONES by Bill Pronzini, described as "A Novel of the West." Jones is an 'itinerant typographer' working for various newspapers in the West. This is set in Box Elder, Montana, and as in several of Pronzini's non-series mysteries, each chapter is narrated by a different (clearly identified) character. His books are always worth reading. I've read well over 50 of them over the years, including the entire Nameless series.

Stories. I read Ethan Canin's EMPEROR OF THE AIR, his first book, written when he was in medical school and published at 25. Somewhat uneven, but I enjoyed most of it. I got, as a Crippen & Landru subscriber, their annual Christmas story, this one "The Scrooge Society" by Elaine Viets, which I enjoyed a lot. One of the members of the title group is murdered, apparently by one of the other three at an anti-Christmas dinner. Fun story.

I've mentioned Barry Hannah's AIRSHIPS, and I'm nearly done with that increasingly odd collection, praised by such as Philip ROth, Cynthia Ozick, and Alfred Kazin. Several stories are Civil War-related.

I'm a big fan of Robert Silverberg's short stories and have read all nine volumes of his Collected Stories. I'm reading (mostly re-reading, as many of these were in the Collected edition) TIME AND TIME AGAIN, a collection of 16 of his time travel stories (one of his favorite devices). As always, his new introductions are almost worth the price of the book.

Lesa said...

Sounds as if a few of us had one of those weeks, Sharon. I hope everything goes okay for you.

Lesa said...

You're right, Jeff. Reading is Fundamental. I like the sound of that Pronzini book. I've really only read a few of the Nameless books, but that one sounds really interesting. I'll have to check it out. And, I haven't read Silverberg in years.

SandyG265 said...

I think it’s great that you’re providing books for the shelter. I had one of those weeks too. I only finished two books.

IN AN ABSENT DREAM by Seanan McGuire. It’s the 4th book in here wayward children fantasy series. A young girl goes through a door in a tree and winds up in The Goblin Market.

The newest book in Sofie Ryan’s second chance cat series, NO ESCAPE CLAWS, was an enjoyable cozy mystery.

Kay said...

What a great thing you guys do, Lesa. I love it! I'm in the middle of Lissa Redmond's first book, A COLD DAY IN HELL. Very absorbing though I am shaking my head a bit at some of the protagonist's choices. I'm also planning on reading THE MURDER BOOK and I now know a bit about what 'the murder book' is.

Our mystery book group met last night and it was a great meeting. Our theme for February was any book by the Jungle Red Writers. That definitely gave a wide scope to the reading. And we had a video chat with Hank Phillippi Ryan. So much fun and the group members were very enthused after it was over. Many of them have never heard an author speak. Hank did a great job.

Charlotte said...


I am reading Flase Profits by Patricia Smiley.

Margie Bunting said...

Yes, it was one of those weeks. I admit I did go to see "Bohemian Rhapsody" at the movies instead of reading during those 2+ hours, but I thought it was well worth my time. Rami Malek is amazing as Freddy Mercury and the music is sublime.

Anyway, the one book I read was A PLACE FOR US by Fatima Farzeen Mirza. Her debut novel is the story of an Indian family--father, mother, two daughters and a son--living in Northern California. While I found the individual family members interesting and the writing accomplished, the story was often confusing as it started with Hadia's wedding and shifted back and forth in time. One chapter might feature the children in elementary school, while in the next they were teenagers or adults. In the last part of the book, the father suddenly writes in first person, directed at his only son. And the son, the black sheep of the family, rejects tradition, struggles with addiction, and pursues a girl who is out of his league. We never know exactly why he is that way, or even how he ends up, nor why his mother favors him over her daughters, and his father can never seem to communicate with him. A valiant effort that came up short for me.

Mark Baker said...

I’m working on PERMANENTLY BOOK by Lisa W Matthews.

Lesa said...

Thank you, everyone! Interesting week, we're all having. Kay, my friend Aubrey said the same thing about Redmond's first book. Those of us who only read the second one liked it.

Glen Davis said...

I read:

Buzzcut by James W. Hall; Thorn is in a relationship with a hippie woman, and everything else in his life is falling apart. Then his friend gets in trouble on a cruise ship. I want to like this series a lot more than I actually do.

Super Patriotic Heroes edited by Craig Yoe; The title says it all. A pretty good collection of of golden age comics (although he left out a couple of my favorites) One of the most strangely toned introductions ever, as the author kept changing his mind on what the book was supposed to be.

You'll Get Yours by William Ard; great 50's hard boiled. Ard died way too soon.

Dead Case in Deadwood by Ann Charles; Paranormal cozy, about which the less said, the better.

Sherlock Holmes and the Giant Rat of Sumatra by Alan Vanneman; What I would describe as the most average Sherlock Holmes continuation.

A Salty Piece of Land by Jimmy Buffet; Perfectly hits his brand.

The Baron and the Mogul Swords by John Creasey; The title says it all.

Who Slays the Wicked by CS Harris; Pretty good Victorian mystery, complete with intrigue and ton.

Cyranetta said...

Almost finished with WOMAN OF THE DUNES by Sarah Maine. I love the interweaving of the eras, and the use of archaeology as a unifying plotline.

katstev said...

I'm currently reading "Freefall" by Jessica Barry and "The Suspect" by Fiona Barton. On audio, I am listening to "shadow of the wind" by Carlos Ruiz Safron

Nann said...

"Once Upon a River" by Diane Setterfield was my in-flight reading to and from ALA Midwinter. Sort of fantasy, sort of steampunk, and very good.

I saw many authors and got many ARCs at the conference -- the boxes I shipped back home arrived on Tuesday. I've finished "The Seven or Eight Deaths of Stella Fortuna" by Juliet Grames. Grames based the novel on her grandmother's ordinary/extraordinary life. It will be published in May and it is WONDERFUL -- put it on your list!

Meanwhile my husband is nearly finished with the new Donna Leon, "Unto Us a Child is Given" (publication date 3/5/19) and looks forward to the new Cara Black ("Murder in Bel-Air," pub date June). Oh, and there's a second Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey -- "The Satapur Moonstone," pub date May.

So, instead of starting on a Midwinter ARC I picked up "The Lost Letters of William Woolf" (which I got back in June) and it sucked me right in. So many books, so little time.