What we are Reading - The 2019 Edition

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Comments

  • EigonEigon Shipmate
    I love Sharon Penman - Sunne in Splendour is wonderful, but I love the Welsh trilogy even more - even though I got through a box of hankies while reading the end of the last one! (Spoiler for those who don't know the history - everyone you love dies).
    I've just started Hide Me Among the Graves by Tim Powers. He's a fantasy writer who is very good on 19thC poets - one of his early books was about Byron and Shelley (and vampires), and this one is about Christina Rossetti and family (and vampires and ghosts). There's also an ex-prostitute and a vet trying to find their kidnapped little girl, and I'm not entirely sure how that plot meshes with the Rossetti family yet.
    The descriptions of 1862 London are vivid.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    I've finished the latest Francis Hardinge - Deeplight. It is one where she creates an alternative world - and very well too. But I must admit to preferring the ones where she integrates the fantasy into a recognisable historical period.
  • MarkDMarkD Shipmate
    Eigon wrote: »
    (Spoiler for those who don't know the history - everyone you love dies).


    That agrees well with my lived experience and since I have a decent degree of self love I'm sure I too shall fit the pattern. ;)
  • TrudyTrudy Heaven Host, 8th Day Host
    I made a wonderful reading decision for the holidays and decided to do a big re-read of Elizabeth Jane Howard's Cazalet Chronicles, which I loved and re-read many times years ago and then sort of forgot about -- to the extent that I did not realize that before the author died she had written a fifth volume, bringing the story of the Cazalet family up to the late 1950s. It's been great revisiting those old favourites and now (just this morning) starting on the last book to see where she decided to leave them all.
  • Trudy, I've never heard of these books but your story makes me think I should look them up. I love finding out about another book in a series. Enjoy!
  • jedijudyjedijudy Heaven Host, 8th Day Host
    Lily Pad wrote: »
    Trudy, I've never heard of these books but your story makes me think I should look them up. I love finding out about another book in a series. Enjoy!

    Lily Pad, I was thinking the same thing! I looked the series up on Nook, and found all five ebooks for $5.99!! I'm looking forward to reading them.
  • A bargain! I was at the hospital gift shop on Tuesday and found the marvelous Breadwinner Trilogy in one book for $1. I am as tickled at finally owning my own copy as I was by anything this Christmas. I can't wait to settle down and read them again. I once brought a grade six class back from chaos with those books. I have two Express books - one week only - to read by Sunday and then I will be able to look up the Cazalet Chronicles.
  • MarkDMarkD Shipmate
    In the middle of reading Elizabeth Gilbert's City of Girls, a novel that came out this year. Told from the perspective of a 95 year old woman writing a letter to the daughter of a man who asks what she was to her father, after he dies. The woman starts with her arrival in NY to live with her aunt at her theatre after failing out of Vassar her freshman year. She is from a wealthy class obviously. Regarding that she notes that just as some people living through the depression reply when asked what it was like to grow up poor that "they didn't realize they were poor". Similarly she didn't realize she was rich. She arrives in NY at the age of 19 to become friends with the showgirls who shared the apartments above the theatre. Within two weeks she has her virginity "expunged" (her word) by a gentleman doctor who enjoys stamp collecting, golf and sex with show girls. Even though I'm sure this is not a common story line I can't help but get the impression that I am getting some peek into what it might be like to grow up female rather than male. Not that I suffer any dysphoria on that count but the opposite sex would seem to be the "other" we should all have the easiest time understanding. The naive assumption that the other sex is basically like us but with different plumbing probably isn't the best we can do.
  • TrudyTrudy Heaven Host, 8th Day Host
    I found City of Girls interesting from the perspective that the main character has an interesting voice and I loved the time period and NYC theatre setting, but I felt it wandered quite a bit in the plot department. I did enjoy it but it wasn't as tightly put-together as I would have wished.

    Happy to have turned a couple of people on to the Cazalet Chronicles and hope you enjoy them as much as I did! I'm liking the surprise 5th book very much and while it's too much to hope that all the man characters will get happy endings, I'm expecting that as the author surely knew it would be the last book, she will have given most of my favourites some kind of closure.
  • MarkDMarkD Shipmate
    Trudy wrote: »
    I found City of Girls interesting from the perspective that the main character has an interesting voice and I loved the time period and NYC theatre setting, but I felt it wandered quite a bit in the plot department. I did enjoy it but it wasn't as tightly put-together as I would have wished.

    I've only just gotten to WWII so I don't think I've even met the father of the young woman who asks Vivian what she was to her father. Will try to remember to compare notes when I finish. I do find the writing witty.
  • Looking forward to tucking into Calypso by David Sedaris. I love his radio shows and have seen him speak a couple of times, but not yet read any of his books.
  • TrudyTrudy Heaven Host, 8th Day Host
    There is a shiny new 2020 book discussion thread for your reading and chatting pleasure. This one is now closed.
This discussion has been closed.