Monday, March 25, 2019

Mailbox Monday: Books with Pretty Pictures

I found two adorable little illustrated books when I was doing some retail therapy at Powell's Books last week.



I'd Rather Be Reading: A Library of Art for Book Lovers by Guinevere De La Mare.



Know Your Style: Mix It, Match It, Love It by Alyson Walsh (Author) and Ayumi Takahashi (Artist)

What books came into your house last week?



Thanks for joining me for Mailbox Monday, a weekly "show & tell" blog event where participants share the books they acquired the week before. Visit the Mailbox Monday website to find links to all the participants' posts and read more about Books that Caught our Eye.



Saturday, March 23, 2019

Author Interview: Mary Chomenko Hinckley


Mary Chomenko Hinckley is an American artist who works in bronze, resin, glass, and photography. She recently published a monograph showcasing her stunning work.


Mary recently talked with Rose City Reader about her work, her book, and the process of making a book about art.

Please tell us about the blue coyote on the cover of your book.

My first coyote sculpture was a commission for an upscale urban redevelopment project in Old Town Pasadena. Wildlife in that neighborhood has largely been replaced with shops, streets and condominiums. The coyote symbolizes the struggle of wildlife to thrive in urban places. The coyote is a symbol of survival. It adapts to its environment. As the child of WWII survivors and immigrants from Ukraine, I identify with the coyote. The bronze coyote is nickel-plated to give him a beautiful, reflective surface and is then tinted blue. I want the coyote to be viewed as unique and precious.

Why did you choose the coyote as the cover picture?

In closely working with Ryan Polich, the book’s designer at Lucia|Marquand in Seattle, we tried various pieces on the cover. I wanted two different mediums on the cover. The blue coyote is a recent piece and worked well with the glass piece from my Gates of Venice series that we chose for the back.

You’ve worked in many media as an artist – bronze, resin, glass, paint, and paper – what led you to compile this monograph of your work, Material Evolution, at this point in your career?

After a solo exhibit in 2015, I wanted a permanent record of my journey as an artist. So much work goes into an exhibition, it happens, the work comes down and it’s over. The work goes out into the world and the conversation with the work on the walls is finished. I wanted a document to see where I’ve been and to share it.

How did you think of the book’s title and what meaning do you want to convey with it?

My last two exhibitions have been titled Material Evolution because I have worked in paper, bronze, paint, photography, resin, and glass and back to bronze. As I have revisited early work in one medium I find something new to say about that idea in another medium. The ideas evolve and one medium or another asserts itself as the best way forward. Thus the title; I continue to find a satisfactory process in varying materials.

There is a theme that runs through much of your work of how the natural word intersects with urban life. Can you tell us about that theme?

Living in Boston then in Silicon Valley for over 20 years I worked as a graphic artist for electronic companies. I looked at the universe of manufacturing and the proliferation of manmade goods, especially electronics. I became keenly interested in the intersection of the natural world and the built world. I question if nature will survive and thrive in the hands of the humans.

What did you learn from compiling Material Evolution – either about your work as an artist or the process of creating a book like this – that most surprised you?

I found the extreme connectedness in my work. While various bodies of work may seem random, I clearly see the natural progression in my ideas. I hope the reader sees this as well. When working,
I don’t know where the piece is going, but in retrospect, there is a clear path. It is a journey of discovery.

I was surprised at how much I enjoyed a collaborative process with the writers in the book. I enjoyed conversations on philosophy and Artificial Intelligence with Paul Karlstrom, art historian, who wrote my lead essay. I enjoyed working with Ann Karlstrom who is a brilliant editor. Ann. She edited for grammar and content and drove me to clarify ideas and consider each word; exhausting, but worth it.

Who is the audience for your book?

My audience is anyone who is interested in contemporary art, Silicon Valley archaeology (I may be the first SV archaeologist), ideas of time and place, and how the natural and built world collide and coexist. Children also love the book.

Of the works featured in your book, what is your personal favorite, the one that brings you joy?

I love coyote on the cover, it makes me optimistic and I am very fond the life-sized photographs of the collection of my children’s shoes over 15 and 13 years respectively. They show a journey of two children growing up in the 90’s, their activities, gender, time, and place.

What is the most valuable advice you’ve been given as an artist?

Keep working even if you think no one cares. If you make work, someone will care, besides you. John Goldman, Architect and friend, San Francisco, 1986. It is easy to be uncertain and discouraged and you need to believe in yourself and your vision.

Do you have any events coming up to promote your book?

I am speaking at PSU on May 8 about my book, work and journey. In the fall, I may do talks and book signing on the East Coast. I am working with mindbuckmedia to help set those up.

What is your next project?

I have a bronze commission from the City of Beaverton, which will be completed this summer. I am working on new glass pieces that explore the element of chance. I stack glass pieces in the kiln and when fired and fused the glass moves in unexpected and beautiful ways.


THANKS MARY!

MATERIAL EVOLUTION IS AVAILABLE ONLINE, OR ASK YOUR LOCAL BOOKSELLER TO ORDER IT!




Thursday, March 21, 2019

Book Beginning: In the Shadow of War by Patrick M. Garry

BOOK BEGINNINGS ON FRIDAYS
THANKS FOR JOINING ME ON FRIDAYS FOR BOOK BEGINNING FUN!

MY BOOK BEGINNING



No one ever though of Ricky as my older brother. But he was.

-- In the Shadow of War by Patrick M. Garry. A family story, a love story, a Vietnam War story -- all set in a small, Midwest town in 1970.



Please join me every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires. Please remember to include the title of the book and the author’s name.

EARLY BIRDS & SLOWPOKES: This weekly post goes up Thursday evening for those who like to get their posts up and linked early on. But feel free to add a link all week.

SOCIAL MEDIA: If you are on Twitter, Instagram, or other social media, please post using the hash tag #BookBeginnings. I try to follow all Book Beginnings participants on whatever interweb sites you are on, so please let me know if I have missed any and I will catch up.

YOUR BOOK BEGINNING





TIE IN: The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice is a natural tie in with this event and there is a lot of cross over, so many people combine the two. The idea is to post a teaser from page 56 of the book you are reading and share a link to your post. Find details and the Linky for your Friday 56 post on Freda’s Voice.


MY FRIDAY 56

Professor Donlin, an instructor in the English Department, held out a strange-looking pipe to her even before she took off her coat. That was when she decided, after seeing what was happening to some of the other women's clothing, to keep all of hers and head for home.






Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Blogiversary: 11 years! Thank you!

Wow! Eleven years of blogging makes me feel like a dinosaur. Did I start when computer screens were still black with green glowing letters? It feels like it!

When I started Rose City Reader in 2008, I was still transitioning from a pretty laid back, part time law practice, handling mostly real estate cases. I had lots of time to read, write book reviews, and spend time getting to know my fellow book bloggers. It was book blogger bliss.

But about the same time, my new law practice also took off, representing adults who were sexually abused as kids. I became a partner at a small firm specializing in cases against trusted institutions that allowed children to be abused. When my law partner died, I started my own firm in 2014 with one associate attorney. She became my law partner this year and we will have a great party to celebrate our firm's 5th anniversary and name change, just as soon as we finish a big trial against the Boy Scouts in Idaho in May.

Although my work keeps me incredibly busy, I still love book blogging and the blogging community. I blog when I can. I hardly write any book reviews these days. And I hate that I don't have time to leave comments on the blogs of my blogger friends. But I enjoy seeing book blogs continue to thrive, new ones pop up, book blogging on Instagram and other changes, all of it.

One of these days, when I can slow down a bit at work, I plan to spend more "quality time" with my blog. In the meantime, I'm happy to post what I can and to have the readers I do. Thank you! 

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Teaser Tuesday: Zuckerman Unbound by Philip Roth



You see, not everybody was delighted with this book that was making Zuckerman a fortune. Plenty of people had already written to tell him off.

-- Zuckerman Unbound by Philip Roth. This is the second of Roth's Zuckerman books, featuring his alter ego, Nate Zuckerman. In Unbound, Zuckerman deals with the fame and fortune of his first best seller, the parallel to Roth's Portnoy's Complaint


Teaser Tuesdays is hosted by The Purple Booker, where you can find the official rules for this weekly event.

Monday, March 18, 2019

Mailbox Monday: In the Shadow of War by Patrick M. Garry

One new book came my way last week. What books came into your house last week?



In the Shadow of War by Patrick M. Garry. In the summer of 1970, in a scraggly Midwestern town, a group of Vietnam war wives move in to help renovate an old ballroom. But when a disgraced war vet arrives with a secret about one of the husbands, the the town is thrust into the center of political controversy.




Thanks for joining me for Mailbox Monday, a weekly "show & tell" blog event where participants share the books they acquired the week before. Visit the Mailbox Monday website to find links to all the participants' posts and read more about Books that Caught our Eye.

Mailbox Monday is graciously hosted by Leslie of Under My Apple Tree, Serena of Savvy Verse & Wit, and Martha of Reviews by Martha's Bookshelf.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Book Beginning: The Collected Poems of W.B. Yeats

BOOK BEGINNINGS ON FRIDAYS
THANKS FOR JOINING ME ON FRIDAYS FOR BOOK BEGINNING FUN!

MY BOOK BEGINNING



The woods of Arcady are dead,
And over is their antique joy
Of old the world on dreaming fed;
Grey Truth is now her Painted toy;

-- from "The Song of the Happy Shepherd," the first poem in The Collected Poems of W.B. Yeats. Since we are heading into St. Patrick's Day weekend, it seems a good day to feature an Irish poet. I've been working my way through this book for a couple of years. I keep it on my table at work and try to read one poem every day. I can't say the first poem in the book is my favorite!




Please join me every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires. Please remember to include the title of the book and the author’s name.

EARLY BIRDS & SLOWPOKES: This weekly post goes up Thursday evening for those who like to get their posts up and linked early on. But feel free to add a link all week.

SOCIAL MEDIA: If you are on Twitter, Instagram, or other social media, please post using the hash tag #BookBeginnings. I try to follow all Book Beginnings participants on whatever interweb sites you are on, so please let me know if I have missed any and I will catch up.

YOUR BOOK BEGINNING





TIE IN: The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice is a natural tie in with this event and there is a lot of cross over, so many people combine the two. The idea is to post a teaser from page 56 of the book you are reading and share a link to your post. Find details and the Linky for your Friday 56 post on Freda’s Voice.


MY FRIDAY 56

I heard an old religious man
But yesternight declare
That he had found a text to prove
That only God, my dear,
Could love you for yourself alone
And not your yellow hair.

-- from "For Anne Gregory." This is my favorite Yeats poem, so I cheated a bit to include it here because it is not on page 56. I've always kept this last stanza taped to my desk. I think of it as a reminder of the fickleness of the human heart and a warning against vanity. Or something like that.









Monday, March 11, 2019

Mailbox Monday: 36 Bottles of Wine by Paul Zitarelli

What books came into your house last week? I ended up with one new book, a gift from Memaloose Wine in appreciation for being a Wine Club member for so long. What a nice surprise!



36 Bottles of Wine: Less Is More with 3 Recommended Wines per Month Plus Seasonal Recipe Pairings by Paul Zitarelli




Thanks for joining me for Mailbox Monday, a weekly "show & tell" blog event where participants share the books they acquired the week before. Visit the Mailbox Monday website to find links to all the participants' posts and read more about Books that Caught our Eye.

Mailbox Monday is graciously hosted by Leslie of Under My Apple Tree, Serena of Savvy Verse & Wit, and Martha of Reviews by Martha's Bookshelf.

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Author Interview: Dr. Jody Fleming


Psychologist Jodie Fleming specialized in "psycho-oncology" counseling cancer patients before her own breast cancer diagnosis. Her new memoir, A Hole in My Genes, tells how Jodie went from doctor to patient and worked through grief and loss, surgeries, and infertility to cancer survival.



Jodie recently talked with Rose City Reader about her memoir, becoming a writer, and the Psychology of It:

How did you come to write A Hole in My Genes?

A Hole in My Genes came about incidentally really. In 2010, I received a breast cancer diagnosis which came exactly one month after my marriage had ended. I’ve always used writing as a coping strategy and so, began journaling in the form of letters to my Nana who had died four years earlier. She would’ve been one of my greatest supports and so, through the letters, I felt connected to her and comforted in a way. Once treatment ended and I stopped writing to her, I found I really missed the writing process. I stumbled across an online writing class, the Literary Kitchen with Ariel Gore, around the same time and used our weekly class assignments as a cathartic way in which to continue to process all of the changes that had just occurred in my life. Whilst it was therapeutic for me, I also started receiving feedback from my classmates that they too were benefiting in a variety of ways from my story. I think that as a part of coping with any of life’s traumatic events, we tend to go seeking meaning from them. The positive feedback allowed me to dream that perhaps there was a book in there somewhere that might be able to help at least one other person going through a trauma in their own lives and the idea for A Hole in My Genes was born!

You are a psychologist and, prior to your own cancer diagnosis, specialized in psycho-oncology. What is psycho-oncology and how does your professional background add to your memoir?

Psycho-oncology focuses on the psychological, emotional, social and ethical issues related to all aspects of cancer for not only patients, but also their families and carers. My work as a psycho-oncologist provided me with the privileged insight into my patients’ experiences. I’d also cared for my husband with testicular cancer eight years earlier and so felt very prepared for my own treatment, but that wasn’t to be the case initially.

It probably took me until mid-way through chemotherapy to realize that I probably had a set of skills that could alleviate some of the distress and discomfort I felt. I’m sometimes slow on the uptake! Luckily though, once I realized, I was able to rely on several helpful tools from my toolkit including accessing my social supports, mindful grounding techniques, and managing my catastrophic worries with some thinking tools. My prior knowledge and then lived experiences using those tools adds to my memoir which I’ve started describing as a hybrid book – half memoir, half educational instruction manual for the cognitive and behavioral strategies I engaged in my own treatment.

Your book is intensely personal – did you have any qualms about sharing so much?

This is a question I’m asked very often, closely followed by a comment about how brave I am, which I assume means that no one else on the planet would include some of the personal details I have! For me, it was a no-brainer to include everything that I did because those were the topics that everyone in my treatment team and surrounds avoided. I struggled with things like sexual dysfunction and menopause because no one had been brave enough to have those conversations with me and for years my quality of life suffered because of that.

I’m a massive believer that if we were all just a little more honest with our inner worlds then it would go a long way to stopping people from feeling isolated and alone with some really common, normal reactions to some abnormal life events. One of the main reasons I wrote this book was to hopefully give someone, somewhere the benefits of the knowledge I gained along the way so that they wouldn’t have to turn to Kathy Bates for sex education! (For those who have read the book, this will make a lot of sense). There was no way in good conscience that I couldn’t go all the way in telling my story, even though that has meant having to speak in public about my vagina way more than possibly imaginable!

Who is your intended audience and what do you hope your readers will gain from your book?

This is a book for healthcare professionals. It is a book for the families and friends of loved ones going through cancer. And it may even be for patients. More than the cancer world though, this is a story of facing and overcoming adversity, about human resilience, hope, and imperfect life. Having said that, maybe there’s something in there for anyone going through a really hard time.

Can you recommend any other memoirs that deal with going through cancer with the kind of heart and honesty you put into yours?

Cancer memoirs are books that I read before having cancer. They aren’t books that I’ve chosen to read since. In fact, I did read Susan Duncan’s Salvation Creek after treatment not realizing she had breast cancer and had the strongest visceral reaction when I arrived at the page that described in detail one of her chemotherapy treatments. One book that I read afterward, gifted by a friend was Pretty is What Changes by Jessica Queller about her family’s quest navigating their way through having one of the breast cancer genetic mutations. Jessica herself had to decide about prophylactic surgeries before marriage and before having children and her writing style was incredibly engaging which we’d expect given she is a television writer. I truly loved her book as it gave me some insight into my family’s fears and decision making around the same issues.

What did you learn from writing your book – either about the subject of the book or the writing process – that most surprised you?

Mostly I’ve learnt how much I value and rely upon the writing process to cope in life. I still don’t see myself as a writer but having spent all of those years in and out of the Literary Kitchen, I feel as though I learnt to write, to express myself with an authentic voice and to paint a picture with words. The whole way along the biggest surprise to me has been the large amount of positive feedback I receive about my writing style, especially from the people closest to me who appear equally as surprised as me that I created this book that tells such an honest story that people seem to be gravitating towards. Reading my book on the other hand, which I’ve only done once from cover to cover, surprised me by highlighting to myself just how resilient I must be. That’s kind of nice.

What is The Psychology of It? 

Well, once active treatment ended and I stopped writing the letters to my Nan, I really missed writing. So, I began writing the book. Once the book was finished, I really missed writing and so I had to find another place to motivate and inspire me to write. I’d really enjoyed writing about the therapeutic strategies in the memoir and I also had a greater urge to normalize common human experiences to enhance a sense of connection and similarity between us all because I see the complete opposite when people walk through my clinic door. My website, The Psychology of It, became the place that I could do that.

I specifically added five different components which supported five different writing styles. Analyse interprets the science into easy to understand concepts; The Coping Toolkit is full of easy to implement coping strategies; Conversations on the Couch are interviews with everyday people about life; Up Close & Personal are more personal reflections on global topics; and New Things sort of gave me a place to post articles that didn’t fit anywhere else. The Psychology of It Facebook page took on a life of its own though, with over 3,500 Villagers which provides a real sense of community. I share loads of things I find useful as well as original articles from time to time on the Facebook page and I have a very strong hunch that it’s due to Village that 550+ people filled our local theatre for the launch of A Hole in My Genes. The positive power of social media!

You have a great website and are also active on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and even YouTube. From an author’s perspective, how important are social media to engage with your readers?

Authors need a platform from which to launch their books and creating that platform begins to happen perhaps even before a book exists and is crucial for promoting and selling books. Social media engagement provides reach far greater than my website could as a standalone method for communication and I rely on it heavily for engaging with my Village. It’s instant. It’s an excellent source of information and it tells me exactly what my followers are into and what they’re looking for. I am still experimenting with all of it to be honest, but I’m learning as I go and am enjoying the process. In direct relation to A Hole in My Genes, social media has introduced me to so many amazing people and already has provided me with opportunities that never would’ve existed without it. This interview is one example of that. You would never have found me in my little pocket of Australia had social media not connected us.

I will soon have a new author website in addition to The Psychology of It website.

What is the most valuable advice you were given when writing your memoir?

Diana Kirk, who introduced us, actually was so instrumental in advising me to write with my own voice and to write for myself, as if no one else would ever read it. In the beginning, I got too caught up in what other people would think and it created too much self-doubt, not to mention painting a completely inauthentic version of myself. Once I had that all worked out, writing became easier.

Any tips or hints for authors considering writing a memoir?

Do it. Get started. It’s easier to edit something that exists than trying to find the perfect first sentence and staring at a blank page. Consider the other people in your story and how you might seek their permission to include them, or how you might protect them if need be. But really, it’s the Nike principle. Just do it.

What’s next for you? What are you working on now?

Well, I’d love to say I have a solid idea for book number two but I don’t really. I’m busy working full time and promoting this book which I’m trying to mindfully enjoy as a process. In one of life’s great ironies, with all of the time that social media and book promotion takes, I’m simply not getting the chance to write! So in all honesty, what’s next for me is to join a local writer’s group that meet only monthly, but that’s better than nothing.

THANKS JODIE!

A HOLE IN MY GENES IS AVAILABLE ON LINE, OR ASK YOUR LOCAL BOOK SELLER TO ORDER IT!


Thursday, March 7, 2019

Book Beginning: Staying On by Paul Scott

BOOK BEGINNINGS ON FRIDAYS
THANKS FOR JOINING ME ON FRIDAYS FOR BOOK BEGINNING FUN!

MY BOOK BEGINNING



When Tusker Smalley died of a massive coronary at approximately 9:30 am on the last Monday in April, 1972, his wife Lucy was out, having her white hair blue-rinsed and set at the Seraglio Room on the ground floor of Pankot's new five-storey glass and concrete hotel, the Shiraz.
UPDATE, Saturday, March 9, 2019: 

Apparently I was so distracted when I put this post up that I didn't realize I left out the name of my book and any description. It's been that kind of week.

-- Staying On by Paul Scott is a sequel to Scott's Raj Quartet about the wind up of British rule in India during WWII. He won the 1977 Booker Prize for Staying On.




Please join me every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires. Please remember to include the title of the book and the author’s name.

EARLY BIRDS & SLOWPOKES: This weekly post goes up Thursday evening for those who like to get their posts up and linked early on. But feel free to add a link all week.

SOCIAL MEDIA: If you are on Twitter, Instagram, or other social media, please post using the hash tag #BookBeginnings. I try to follow all Book Beginnings participants on whatever interweb sites you are on, so please let me know if I have missed any and I will catch up.

YOUR BOOK BEGINNING





TIE IN: The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice is a natural tie in with this event and there is a lot of cross over, so many people combine the two. The idea is to post a teaser from page 56 of the book you are reading and share a link to your post. Find details and the Linky for your Friday 56 post on Freda’s Voice.


MY FRIDAY 56

My Friday 56 is missing this week. I don't have the book with me and I am still at the office after 8:00 pm -- something I almost never do. I have a brief to file in a case in Idaho tomorrow and a court hearing here in Portland, so I barely got my opening sentence up. Next week!

Saturday, March 2, 2019

Favorite Author: Tana French


Tana French is an American-born author who lives and writes in Ireland. Her popular Dublin Murder Squad series switches protagonists from book to book, with one of the side characters in an earlier book moving forward into the leading role in a later book. Her latest is a stand alone.

In the books, the Murder Squad office is in the Dublin Castle. In real life, homicide detectives in Dublin worked in Harcourt Square until the Garda headquarters moved to Kevin Street in 2018. Look who's a detective!

I'm late to start the series, but looking forward to reading them all. Those I have read are in red; those on my TBR shelf are in blue.

In the Woods (2007)
The Likeness (2008)
Faithful Place (2010)
Broken Harbor (2012)
The Secret Place (2014)
The Trespasser (2016)
The Wych Elm (2018) (stand alone)



Thursday, February 28, 2019

Book Beginning: In the Woods by Tana French

BOOK BEGINNINGS ON FRIDAYS
THANKS FOR JOINING ME ON FRIDAYS FOR BOOK BEGINNING FUN!

MY BOOK BEGINNING


What I warn you to remember is that I am a detective. Our relationship with truth is fundamental but cracked, refracting confusingly like fractured glass.

-- In the Woods by Tana French. What a great beginning! Nothing like the unreliable narrator telling you he is unreliable from the get go.

I took the picture earlier this week, when we had snow here in Portland.




Please join me every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires. Please remember to include the title of the book and the author’s name.

EARLY BIRDS & SLOWPOKES: This weekly post goes up Thursday evening for those who like to get their posts up and linked early on. But feel free to add a link all week.

SOCIAL MEDIA: If you are on Twitter, Instagram, or other social media, please post using the hash tag #BookBeginnings. I try to follow all Book Beginnings participants on whatever interweb sites you are on, so please let me know if I have missed any and I will catch up.YOUR BOOK BEGINNING




TIE IN: The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice is a natural tie in with this event and there is a lot of cross over, so many people combine the two. The idea is to post a teaser from page 56 of the book you are reading and share a link to your post. Find details and the Linky for your Friday 56 post on Freda’s Voice.


MY FRIDAY 56

Hunt gave me a wounded look. "Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence," he told me reproachfully.
I want to remember that line for my upcoming trial!




Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Teaser Tuesday: A Hole in My Genes by Dr. Jodie Fleming



I kept walking towards my car but I felt like I was sinking in quicksand, my eyes and mouth wide open, my heart feeling as if it was in a vice. What did it mean?

A Hole in My Genes by Dr. Jodie Fleming. A new memoir about the author's fight with cancer, made particularly poignant because Fleming is a psychologist who worked with cancer patients, had cared for her husband with testicular cancer eight years prior, and whose diagnosis came exactly one month after the end of her marriage.




Teaser Tuesdays is hosted by The Purple Booker, where you can find the official rules for this weekly event.



Monday, February 25, 2019

Mailbox Monday: Stack of Books

What books came into your house last week? I got a stack of books from Booktique, my favorite Friends of the Library store.


Pearls, Girls and Monty Bodkin by P. G. Wodehouse

The Story of Lucy Gault by William Trevor

Will Mrs. Major Go to Hell? by Aloïse Buckley Heath

Wodehouse On Crime by P. G. Wodehouse

The Sherlockian by Graham Moore

The House in Good Taste by Elsie De Wolfe

The Country Girl: A Memoir by Edna O'Brien




Thanks for joining me for Mailbox Monday, a weekly "show & tell" blog event where participants share the books they acquired the week before. Visit the Mailbox Monday website to find links to all the participants' posts and read more about Books that Caught our Eye.

Mailbox Monday is graciously hosted by Leslie of Under My Apple Tree, Serena of Savvy Verse & Wit, and Martha of Reviews by Martha's Bookshelf.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Book Beginning: Mira's Way by Amy Maroney

BOOK BEGINNINGS ON FRIDAYS
THANKS FOR JOINING ME ON FRIDAYS FOR BOOK BEGINNING FUN!

MY BOOK BEGINNING



Zari found an empty seat in a half-filled row near the front of the conference room. The latte she’d downed at the Amsterdam airport was still buzzing through her veins.

Mira's Way by Amy Maroney. This is the second book in Maroney's historical fiction Miramonde Series about a female Renaissance artist and the modern-day art historian on her trail.




Please join me every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires. Please remember to include the title of the book and the author’s name.

EARLY BIRDS & SLOWPOKES: This weekly post goes up Thursday evening for those who like to get their posts up and linked early on. But feel free to add a link all week.

SOCIAL MEDIA: If you are on Twitter, Instagram, or other social media, please post using the hash tag #BookBeginnings. I try to follow all Book Beginnings participants on whatever interweb sites you are on, so please let me know if I have missed any and I will catch up.

YOUR BOOK BEGINNING




TIE IN: The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice is a natural tie in with this event and there is a lot of cross over, so many people combine the two. The idea is to post a teaser from page 56 of the book you are reading and share a link to your post. Find details and the Linky for your Friday 56 post on Freda’s Voice.


MY FRIDAY 56

Well, darn it. I don't have the book in front of me to find a teaser from page 56. I thought I tossed the book in my basket this morning, but I forgot. 

Here is a teaser from page 8, which is as far as I can get on the "Look Inside" feature on Amazon. Sorry! I need to beg a little kindness -- it's been a hair-on-fire kind of week.

He gave a short, dismissive laugh. "Our theories have nothing in common."





Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Teaser Tuesday: In the Woods by Tana French



When we went into work the next morning we were friends. It really was a simple as that: we planted seeds without thinking, and woke up to our own private beanstalk.

-- In the Woods by Tana French. I've been meaning to read this for years and my book club picked it for our next book so I finally got around to it. It is the first book in French's Dublin Murder Squad series.


Teaser Tuesdays is hosted by The Purple Booker, where you can find the official rules for this weekly event.

Monday, February 18, 2019

Mailbox Holiday Monday: Memoir & Historical Fiction

We are too busy at my office getting ready for an upcoming trial to take Presidents' Day off work, but I can still enjoy a couple of new books I got this weekend:



A Hole in My Genes by Dr. Jodie Fleming. This cancer survivor memoir is particularly compelling because the author is a psychologist who, before her own breast cancer diagnosis, specialized in "psycho-oncology" counseling cancer patients.



Mira's Way by Amy Maroney. This is the second book in Maroney's historical fiction Miramonde Series. I just finished the first book, A Girl from Oto and absolutely loved it. Read my Rose City Reader interview of Amy Maroney.

What books came into your house last week?





Thanks for joining me for Mailbox Monday, a weekly "show & tell" blog event where participants share the books they acquired the week before. Visit the Mailbox Monday website to find links to all the participants' posts and read more about Books that Caught our Eye.

Mailbox Monday is graciously hosted by Leslie of Under My Apple Tree, Serena of Savvy Verse & Wit, and Martha of Reviews by Martha's Bookshelf.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Book Beginning Valentine: Live and Let Pie by Ellie Alexander

BOOK BEGINNINGS ON FRIDAYS
THANKS FOR JOINING ME ON FRIDAYS FOR BOOK BEGINNING FUN!

MY BOOK BEGINNING



They say that you can’t go back, that it’s better to keep the past in the rearview mirror. That may be true, but lately it felt like my past was creeping into everything I touched.

-- Live and Let Pie by Ellie Alexander. This latest cozy Bakeshop Mystery finds pastry chef, cafe owner, and amateur sleuth Jules Capshaw unearthing a vintage skull at a picnic and a conveniently dead landlord.




Please join me every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires. Please remember to include the title of the book and the author’s name.

EARLY BIRDS & SLOWPOKES: This weekly post goes up Thursday evening for those who like to get their posts up and linked early on. But feel free to add a link all week.

SOCIAL MEDIA: If you are on Twitter, Instagram, or other social media, please post using the hash tag #BookBeginnings. I try to follow all Book Beginnings participants on whatever interweb sites you are on, so please let me know if I have missed any and I will catch up.

YOUR BOOK BEGINNING





TIE IN: The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice is a natural tie in with this event and there is a lot of cross over, so many people combine the two. The idea is to post a teaser from page 56 of the book you are reading and share a link to your post. Find details and the Linky for your Friday 56 post on Freda’s Voice.


MY FRIDAY 56

Everything in Ashland was within a ten-minute drive. And aside from the occasional backup on Main Street during the height of the tourist season, the only time traffic came to a stop was when a herd of black-tailed deer were crossing the street.

The Bakeshop Mystery series is set in Ashland, Oregon, home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Blackstone Audio, among other delights.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

2018 European Reading Challenge Winner Announced!



THIS IS THE WINNER ANNOUNCEMENT POST FOR 2018

TO FIND THE 2018 REVIEWS, GO TO THIS PAGE

TO FIND THE 2018 WRAP UP POSTS, GO TO THIS PAGE

THE 2019 EUROPEAN READING CHALLENGE SIGN UP PAGE IS AT THIS PAGE 

2018 was the seventh year for this challenge, which involves reading books set in different European countries or written by authors from different European countries.

Big thanks to all the participants who joined me for the Grand Tour!

JET SETTER GRAND PRIZE WINNER

The 2018 Jet Setter prize goes to Reese at Typings who visited 16 different European countries reviewed the books she read. Her wrap up post has links to all her reviews. 

Honorary Mention (but no prizes) go to five other participants who read and reviewed books from 10 or more unique countries:


My own wrap-up post is here. I read 13 books from different European countries, although only three were translations, which is backsliding from the year before. But again, I didn't review any of the books I read because last year was crazy busy for me at my law practice.

Congratulations to all the readers who completed the challenge! There is still plenty of time to join us in 2019.

JOIN THE 2019 CHALLENGE! SIGN UP HERE

The gist: The idea is to read books by European authors or books set in European countries (no matter where the author comes from). The books can be anything – novels, short stories, memoirs, travel guides, cookbooks, biography, poetry, or any other genre. You can participate at different levels, but each book must be by a different author and set in a different country – it's supposed to be a tour.

Sign up HERE for the 2019 Challenge. 

Monday, February 11, 2019

Mailbox Birthday Monday

I got a few fun books for my birthday this weekend. What new books came into your house last week?



The Drunken Botanist: The Plants that Create the World's Great Drinks by Amy Stewart. My friend saw a comment I left on Instagram about wanting this book and remembered it for my birthday -- how nice was that!



Bibliophile: An Illustrated Miscellany by Jane Mount. The same friend got me this one, just because she knew I would love it, which I do. Pretty illustrations and book lists -- there's a combination I can't resist.


The Counterlife by Philip Roth. Hubby went back to the well, as he says, and got me another fancy Franklin Library edition of a Philip Roth book. He knows I like them, so when he gets stuck for gift ideas, he heads to eBay.




Thanks for joining me for Mailbox Monday, a weekly "show & tell" blog event where participants share the books they acquired the week before. Visit the Mailbox Monday website to find links to all the participants' posts and read more about Books that Caught our Eye.

Mailbox Monday is graciously hosted by Leslie of Under My Apple Tree, Serena of Savvy Verse & Wit, and Martha of Reviews by Martha's Bookshelf.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Book Beginning: A Weekend in New York by Benjamin Markovits

BOOK BEGINNINGS ON FRIDAYS
THANKS FOR JOINING ME ON FRIDAYS FOR BOOK BEGINNING FUN!

MY BOOK BEGINNING



Whenever Paul qualified for the US Open, his parents, his big brother, his two sisters, their various kids, traveled to New York to watch him play. 

-- A Weekend in New York by Benjamin Markovits. I love everything about this opening sentence. There's so much family history and potential for future family drama packed into it.

And it immediately puts me in to a world I know nothing about, the world of professional tennis. You know from this sentence that this is a world where someone can repeatedly qualify without ever winning, because if Paul won the US Open, the book would be about his family celebrating, not gathering for yet another reunion.





Please join me every Friday to share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires. Please remember to include the title of the book and the author’s name.

EARLY BIRDS & SLOWPOKES: This weekly post goes up Thursday evening for those who like to get their posts up and linked early on. But feel free to add a link all week.

SOCIAL MEDIA: If you are on Twitter, Instagram, or other social media, please post using the hash tag #BookBeginnings. I try to follow all Book Beginnings participants on whatever interweb sites you are on, so please let me know if I have missed any and I will catch up.YOUR BOOK BEGINNING



TIE IN: The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice is a natural tie in with this event and there is a lot of cross over, so many people combine the two. The idea is to post a teaser from page 56 of the book you are reading and share a link to your post. Find details and the Linky for your Friday 56 post on Freda’s Voice.


MY FRIDAY 56

Around her family she almost consciously regressed. It was a relief, it felt less like regression than a return to normality.


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