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Jun 01 2020 8:12am
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May 27 2020 8:28pm
Astro: Oldiesman:  Much better.  Thank you!

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Library Bookshelf

Started by Marilyne, March 29, 2016, 03:20:53 pm

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I finally finished Dancing at the Rascal Fair by Ivan Doig.   I shouldn't have used the word "finally" because it sounds like it was a chore.  Quite the opposite,  I think that I didn't want the story to end.  I really enjoy his writing style. It seems to me that some of his phrases are almost like music or poetry.  The other thing about his stories is how he tells the history.  When he spoke of the Influenza epidemic of 1919 it was so much like the scare of the Corona-virus that we are having just now.....how history repeats itself!!   Even though this is an older book,  I would highly recommend it to anyone who hasn't already read it.  I'm going to be looking for another of his books called English Creek.  Apparently I should have read that first, but didn't.

I picked up another book at the same time I got that one.  This is one by Stewart O'Nan.....remember him from Emily Alone??   This title is Snow Angels.   I'd forgotten about this author.  One that I read earlier was The Last Night at the Lobster.
Mary C


Simply loved "Last Night at the Lobster".  That one encouraged me to read some of his other books.


Tome - I have Rules of Civility, on order at my library, and hope to get it soon.  I know it's totally different from, A Gentleman in Moscow, so I'll be expecting a different kind of reading enjoyment.

Mary - Thanks for reminding me of Stewart O'Nan.  I liked Emily Alone, very much, but I especially liked, Last Night At the Lobster. One of those stories that has stayed with me over the years, and I've often recommended it to friends. I went to the library yesterday, to see what they had by O'Nan, and the only one there was, Songs of the Missing.  I can tell it's going to be a sad story, but I checked it out anyway.  We are living in sad times, so maybe it's the right time to read this one.

Jean - I wish I had remembered The Paris Architect, when I went to the library yesterday!   I plan to request it, and will pick it up the next time I go.  If you liked it enough to read it several times, it must be good, so I'll be looking forward to it.  :)



Just noticed . You have a new photo showing. You look good.  Hair not as short.
I see a few books that I haven't heard of before .i have been staying away from the library but may go tomorrow. Just can't get use to reading on iPad. 


Jeanne,Thank you. I thought it was time to update. :)
I just finished Snow Angels by Stewart O'Nan.  His writing is real life in many cases but be prepared for sad feelings....no happy ever after.  Wonder what his personal life was like? 
   I'm now re-reading For One More Day by Mitch Albom.
Mary C


maryc - Yes, Stewart O'Nan, seems to have a direct line into the feelings and the sadness that's hidden in the hearts of many of us.  I'm reading, Songs For The Missing, right now, and it is so well written, that I can't believe it isn't a better known book?  Generally speaking, I believe that people only want to read, "happily ever after", and shy away from a story that deals with sadness and loss.  O'Nan, really knows how to tell it like it is!  Many people have to learn to cope, and accept whatever is thrown at them in this life.


I have not had time to read much this week, but I am almost finished with a novel called Winter Loon by Susan Bernhard. It is kind of a coming of age thing, but with major family dysfunction and hardship. I will be listening to Michael J. Sullivan's Age of Myth when I get to it. 


March 14, 2020, 01:47:16 pm #2197 Last Edit: March 14, 2020, 01:49:14 pm by JeanneP
I got a EMail from my Library saying they are closing down at this time. To check into my Acct. Sunday late to then know what they will be doing. So that makes all the Schools, University .City building all planning on closing until end of March. No Church service for most churches Sunday. Small one cannot have more than 25 people attending. Good Idea so that if one of them  gets sick they will be able to pin point the person. Some of the larger church have hundreds . Grocery stores really out of stuff now. People are still driving around to get stuff. They dont seem to not have some  paper towel but no Toilet paper. Just told one person. Just  Cut the paper towel roll in half and use. It will be thicker, Softer . May not fit roll but the cheaper shorter ones do.
Snow still coming down hard.           


JeanneP,  I've been trying to reply and been losing my messages! :tickedoff:
I've wondered about the libraries and if they would stay open.....so many hands-on things there that can't be sanitized.  It makes sense to close for the time being.
    I've been looking for a book for my Kindle since my library books were finished.   I did get one that I'd requested some time ago but haven't started it yet.   "The Goldfinch".  Many of the titles and authors that I look for aren't available from Hoopla or Overdrive.  Sometimes I just settle for what I can get that looks like my style.
Mary C


Mary, my library system posted a message this A.M. that all libraries will be closed until the end of March.  Wonder what they will do with our on-line reserves?
They said staff will be answering phone, but didn't address that problem.  I have 3 books on request, and they only hold requested items about 7 days before they turn them back.  Thankfully, I have two Kindles, and enough books that I haven't read to start my own library!  Also have the two books for my f2f book clubs already on hand.  I watched this A.M. on CSpan2, the interview with the author of "The Library Book" which is about the big fire in the L. A. Library which destroyed thousands of books.  She was so entertaining. I can't think of her name, but if you look up the title, you'll find her name.  The best, most current information on the COV was the Press Conference on FoxNews which lasted about l 1/2 hours.  It was to be led by Mike Pence, but Trump showed up too.  Then Pence took over, very detailed information.  Present and speaking were Mr. Fauci, who is very forthcoming, other members of the Coronavirus Task Force, and the best of all was the woman from CDC, who was, IMHO, the smartest and most informative of the group, her name was Brix (?) She imparted info that no one else has given us; i.e. just because your test comes back negative one day, doesn't mean that you are clear of the virus the next day. 


Tomereader,I have a feeling that books that have been requested might just go on hold for the time being...whether they have been transferred or not.  It is nice to have access to the ebooks anyway.  I started my spring housecleaning today. Since I'm home I may as well get that started.😊 My bedroom curtains need to be replaced but I washed and hung them back up again....maybe in the fall!
Mary C


Our Libraries will be closed until April 14 they say. What we ordered on line will stay of the shelf.
Town is so quiet. Don't even hear a car of bus. All bars,Restaurants had to close down at 5pm prompt. I think the Fast food places can hand out through the drive up but that will not work . One person working it and traffic would be running into the main roads. Same with the restaurants until the food they have is gone. Call and pick up  at door. All will now bother as cost to much to do that. I suppose the Pizza cars will deliver until run out.
I tried reaching the Drivers place as I need to renew my License and take the road test. Planned on thursday. Thought maybe see if the would extend. Couldn't reach them but on 6pm news they told us that all State offics like that will be closed down and such as Test. New Reg. will add 30 days onto the time due. So I can relax a little.
The now say that the Emergency Dept at the Big hospital got people with the virus in today and so will use Tents on the outside. Now entering hospital. They will give medicine to anyone with it but has to go home. Such as Heart attaches etc will be tested in tent and put through to hospital. Same for baby Delivery. We may loose a few people this way. So sad. They say that the madness is far worse than if a Flooding or Tornado. Fires etc. Way people are reacting. Specially the food problems
Wan't every one to stay in house for a time and this is what should be done. At least we have homes to stay in.


Now my library ,it's a big one, have large drop in boxes outside. They sent out. Emails requesting that we don't use them? To just hold on to books until they  open up again. Saying closing for a month. Nobody can touch them. With all the rain and cold weather having then in there some may mold.


My library has revised its closure from March 29 to April 5.

Right now I am in between books to read. I have started listening to Great Mythologies of the World, one of the Great Courses series.


So excited!  I already have an ebook copy of Hilary Mantel's "The Mirror and the Light" which has just come out this week.  Good thing I'm stuck at home with lots of reading time because I doubt I'd be able to renew.
It started out with a rather gory description of Anne Boleyn's beheading.  Hope the rest won't be similar.


March 28, 2020, 02:36:23 pm #2205 Last Edit: March 28, 2020, 02:39:07 pm by Marilyne
Hello everyone.  :hello:   I hope you're all feeling well, and sheltering in place?  Lots of time for reading, but unfortunately, I've run out of books! :yikes: 

I was busy stocking up on some supplies a couple of weeks go, but forgot about books.  My library is closed until further notice, so I'll have to use my Kindle, whether I want to or not.  Or . . .  my other option is to reread books from my own bookshelf?  I've donated most of my books over the past couple of years, but saved my favorites to read and enjoy once again.  I think that time has arrived. Here are some samples of what I have to choose from here at home. 

The Poisonwood Bible - Kingsolver:  True Grit - Charles Portis:  The Sea Around Us, Rachel Carson:  Hearts, Hilma Wolitzer:  Standing in the Rainbow, and Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe, both by Fannie Flagg:  We Are All Welcome Here, by Elizabeth Berg:  The Greatest Generation, by Tom Brokaw:  A Spool of Blue Thread, Tyler:  Last Night At the Lobster, O'Nan:  The Hours, Michael Cunningham:   My Antonia, Willa Cather: 

That's what's saved on the shelf in this room.  There's a shelf in another room that I will look at and list later.  Maybe all of you Kindle and iPad readers, can get some ideas from this partial list?


I went nuts and downloaded two SciFi short story anthologies from the Free Library of Philadelphia and downloaded another three Scifi's from Amazon prime reading. Two of them I have read before and want to read again, Way Station (1964 Hugo Award for Best Novel) by Clifford D. Simak and The Forever War by Joe Haldeman. Amazingly, the Haldeman book has been "in development" since 1988 to one or another group who want to make it into the movie.

One thing about downloading books to read is that you can't get COVID-19 from doing so. Don't forget to check out https://www.gutenberg.org/catalog/ for free downloads. Lots of classics and other out of copyright books and short stories. 


Now I think The Mirrow and the Light would be my kind of book . Will order from library. the are closed at the moment .say until April 16. Rather not put on my IPad. Got lots of unread books on there


Iris read ,and enjoyed. the bookshop of yesterday's. New writer Amy Meyerson.

Back no to reading . Have 4 books sitting here . That will pas my time as we are staying in the house.


lI've given up on The Mirror and the Light.  Too much "blood and gore" and the writing style is not at all to my liking.
Since I already know about Thomas Cromwell's life, I'm going to skip to the last two sections and wade through how the author ends the story.

"Olive Again" by Elizabeth Strout (sequel to "Olive Kitteridge")and "Resistance Women" by Jennifer Chiaverini have appeared on my Loan list.  I'm sure I'll enjoy both of them a lot more.


Morning all!

Not much going on here in the reading department right now. I am reading the first of a secondary series of novels from the Galaxy's Edge series, plus another short story anthology. Also, I am in a major debate with myself as to whether or not to cancel my Audible account and try the offers for audio narration with purchase of the book. I've spent way to much money on audiobook sales and specials, and have not kept up with the pace. There are now over 80 books in my library. On the one hand moving to the book/narration combo promises to be less expensive than the Audible membership for the most part, on the other, I would miss out on special credits, sales and the free book offerings at the beginning of each month. I would probably lose the ability to return the audio versions I don't like within a year of purchase. George is interested in trying this, but for me, I am not so sure given that I really do like and use the extras on Audible membership. Besides, that, it looks like I can get the same book/audio combo pricing through Audible should I wish to avail myself of it. I have to say that Amazon's explanations of benefits, etc. are not necessarily detailed enough for me.


I loathe tricky decisions like that.


Well, I decided to have another go at the membership option. I think, given my book buying habits, it is still the best option for me. It is a little hard to compare methods because of the different options and pricing which depends on whether or not you are an Audible member, a Prime Member (with or without Audible membership), or buying at full price without being a member to anything.

I finished Order of the Centurion last evening, and am continuing my second short story borrow. I will start Way Station soon, and am currently listening to another Great Courses audio book, Food: A Cultural Culinary History. This one like the one on world mythologies is not the greatest sound quality. I am unhappy to say that so far, every one of the Great Courses series I got so far, I have returned for several different reasons. This one is a keeper. I discovered that somehow the audio quality was set to the lower quality standard. I have to wonder if that is what happened to the Great Mythologies of the World audio. I think I have four more to listen to: one on Spain (1492), one on world literature, one called Ancient Empires before Alexander, and there should be one on the Han dynasty in China, but I don't see it. That I will have to investigate later.


April 10, 2020, 04:29:57 pm #2213 Last Edit: April 10, 2020, 04:36:41 pm by Marilyne
Hello to everyone.  I hope you're all feeling well, and sheltering-in-place?   We are heading into our fourth week of SIP.  It's not as bad as I thought it would be, nd the time is moving along at a fast pace!   We've reached the point where we've run out of lots of staples, and seems to be impossible to replace the things I need.  Well, I'm just trying to think of this as Wartime, with rationing, as in WWII.  This is definitely a war, against Coronavirus!

Maryc  - It's been a long time since we've heard from you??  I hope you and your family members are all healthy?  New York has been hit the hardest, and although I know you aren't near NYC, it is probably bad in your area as well.  Please let us know that you are okay.

Callie  - I haven't seen any messages from you lately, so hope you're doing well?  I see you didn't care for, The Mirror and the Light, and you were starting  Olive Again,  by Strout?  I"m on a waiting list for that one at the library, but it will be a long time before the library opens again.  :(   Someone in here mentioned reading it, and liking it.  I think it was Tomereader?   

MarsGal  - Looks like you'r keeping up okay with your reading, as well as ship-watching and bird watching.  Did you ever see the three Ravens again?  I commented on it in Bait and Tackle, but never dug out my Birds of America, to take a look at the pictures.  Our yard is sometimes overrun with crows, so I looked up the differences in crows and ravens, and recall that it was mostly size and wingspread, with the Ravens being larger.  Also There was a difference in the cawing sound?

I've reread a couple of books that I have here - first was The Poisonwood Bible, followed by My Antonia.  I think the next one will be, The Life We Bury, by Allen Eskens.

I hope we hear from everyone who posts here: maryc, Callie, Jean, MarsGal, JeanneP, Tomereader, Phyllis, and PatH.           


PatH reporting in.  I'm fine, sheltering in place, haven't been within 6 feet of anybody for almost 3 weeks.  I feel strong and well, and haven't run out of anything really crucial yet.

For some reason I'm not reading much, so don't have a lot to say.

Stay well, everyone.


I have so many good books waiting on the shelf at the library.I know that they are not planning on opening  until May at the earliest. Sort of without hand hold books at the moment. Got lots on my Tablets. Going to have to go to them.


I am rereading Way Station now, and just finished the second of two SciFi anthology books.

Also, I am still listening to Food: A Cultural Culinary History which is a fun listen indeed.



Marilyne,  I am sheltering in place and staying as busy as I want to be. Son is keeping me supplied with groceries, etc.  I mentioned in another forum that I now have half a gallon of Listerine due to his interpretation of my request for a "large" bottle. (He brought 2 - each of which contains 1 quart + 1 pint)  ;D  He/dil brought more supplies this morning.  Nothing in that quantity but not just one of anything, either. 

I enjoyed "Olive Again" but not "Resistance Women", which was a novel based on the lives of four women in Nazi Germany.  As with "Mirror/Light", there was just too much violence and suffering for my tastes.

I remember seeing a movie? special? on t.v. of "Olive Kitteridge" so knew the basic story, but don't think I ever read the book.  So I now have it on Hold.

Had I mentioned reading and enjoying "The Chilbury Ladies' Choir" - by Jennifer Ryan?  It's about women in England during WWII and a bombing does occur but it's not graphically violent.

Also read "Audition", a memoir by Barbara Walters.  She included lots of stories about various world leaders, etc. she had interviewed - as well as sharing her own life story and career development. It's a very long book but held my interest.

Currently reading "Broken Bonds", the second of a series of 3 stories by Karen Harper. They're about 3 adult sisters who return to their hometown in southern Ohio where one of them had been kidnapped by a local religious cult as a child.  The first one, "Shattered Secrets" is about this sister.
(The hometown in southern Ohio sounds a bit too "deep south" to me.  Is this area really considered a part of Appalachia?)

Also have a "Stone Barrington" by Stuart Woods (will probably get through that one in one sitting  :) ) and something by Danielle Steele.  Had put several of hers on the Wish List and get one when I need something that doesn't require much thinking.

Onward and Upward....


I read Barbara Walter's memoir a year or so ago and it was interesting.  What a life she had.

I downloaded a free book from iBooks but haven't read enough to know whether or not I like it.  I've been following the news too much, I think, and need a break so will try to read this book today.


Callie and Jean - I also read Audition, the Barbara Walters memoir.  What a fascinating life she has led!  She's had her share of success,  but also more than her share of family problems,  with her daughter, her sister and her marriages.   I think she's about 90 years old now?

I thought I had read The Life We Bury, but turns out I had not.  I'm really liking it, and looking forward to relaxing with more reading this afternoon. Good to see that all of you are finding books to help with passing the shelter-in-place time.   

Pat - you didn't mention any books you're reading, so please give us some recommendations? 

JeanneP - I hope you've found something interesting to read on your tablet. Let us know? 

MarsGal - We can always count on you to give us some intriguing sounding sci-Fi books to consider.   I occasionally check out one of your titles, but my husband likes sci-fi more than I do.  My preferences always leaning toward family drama and long winded family sagas. 

maryc - Hope we hear from you soon, that everything is okay with you and your family?