Sunday, January 31, 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? Same Song Different Verse


I am linking up with Kathryn at Book Date for It's Monday!  What Are You Reading?  There is nothing new to report in the reading realm this week. I am still reading on my Kindle.
Deep Down Dark: The Untold Stories of 33 Men Buried in a Chilean Mine and the Miracle That Set Them Free.   Goodreads Synopsis: 



Still reading in paperback.
Here Today, Gone Tamale
Rebecca Adler


I should have finished at least one of these this week. I guess I have been in the January doldrums. Good thing this is a new month and a new start.


Stay Busy and Stay Happy



January Month In Review

I haven't done a Month End Review in the past. I'll be linking up with Kathryn at Book Date. 


JANUARY 2016



But I will try to list my books at least, and how I am coming on my challenges.

Goodreads says I am right on track for my goal of 60 books for the year.  5 per month.

January: 


1. Take Me With You by Catherine Ryan Hyde    First Book of the Year

  1. New to me author
  2. Literary Fiction
  3. Paperback
  4. Already Owned:  TBR Triple Dog Dare
  5. Read the Books You Buy Challenge
2. If You Stay (Beautifully Broken #1) by Courtney Cole
  1. New to me author
  2. Women's Fiction Challenge
  3. E-book
  4. Owned:  TBR Triple Dog Dare
  5. Read the Books you Buy  Challenge
3. Across the Miles by Jill Buck  
  1. New to me author
  2. Women's Fiction Challenge
  3. Ebook
  4. Owned: TBR Triple Dog Dare
  5. Read the Books You Buy Challenge 
4. Wild: Lost and Found on the Pacific Coast Trail by Cheryl Strayed

  1. New to me author
  2. Women's Fiction Challenge
  3. Ebook
  4. Owned: TBR Triple Dog Dare
  5. Read the Books You Buy Challenge  
5. The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd
  1. Women's Fiction Challenge
  2. Paperback
  3. Owned: TBR Triple Dog Dare
  4. Read the Books You Buy Challenge
  5. What's In A Name 2016 Challenge - a book with a piece of furniture in the title     

Stay Busy and Stay Happy


Friday, January 29, 2016

Book Beginnings and The Friday 56 - Deep Down Dark


Today I am joining Book Beginning on Fridays hosted by Rose City Reader and The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice. I haven't joined in here in quite a while. But I am engaged in this book this week and wanted to share. 

Prologue: Cities in the Desert

The San Jose Mine is located inside a round, rocky, and lifeless mountain in the Atacama Desert in Chile. Wind is slowly eroding the surface of the mountain into a fine, grayish orange powder that flows downhill and gathers in pools and dunes. 

This book is the February read for my local book club. I really wasn't interested in reading it. I thought it would be dark and depressing. But, the majority rules and so it was added to our list. I started it and was immediately involved in the lives of the Chilean miners. The author is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist  and novelist. He is of Guatemalan descent but was born in Los Angeles. Also, this week my husband was watching The History Channel and the story of the American company that drilled down to the miners was featured. It was very interesting and made it seem more real to me. I do remember the news reports when the accident happened. 



Deep Down Dark: The Untold Stories of 33 Men Buried in a Chilean Mine and the Miracle That Set Them Free
Hector Tobar
Farrar, Straus and Giroux on my Kindle




"There are twenty of us here ready to provide you with immediate help," the minister says. "How are you? How do you find yourselves?"
"Well. We are well. In good spirits, waiting for you to rescue us," Urzua answers, though his voice is hurried and uncertain. 



Stay Busy and Stay Happy


Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Wondrous Words Wednesday - Emma



I am joining Kathy at BermudaOnion's Weblog to share words I found while reading this week. If you want to join us, share some words then link up at Kathy's blog.

I found these words while slogging through Emma by Jane Austen.



illiberal

"Those who can barely live, and who live perforce in a very small, and generally very inferior society, may very well be illiberal and cross."

not allowing people to think and act as they choose: not liberal


carpet-work

"If I draw less, I shall read more; if I give up music, I shall take up carpet-work"

I could not find a definition of carpet-work when I searched the internet, but I think if may be like embroidery or needlepoint.  I understood it to mean a way to keep herself busy if she ended up being an old maid.



stomacher

"... and if she does but send her aunt the pattern of a stomacher, or knit a pair of garters for her grandmother, one hears of nothing else for a month.

the center front section of a waist or underwaist,  or a usually heavily embroidered or jeweled separate piece for the center front of a bodice worn by men and women in the 15th and 16th centuries and later by women only


A close up of a probable hand embroidered stomacher

A 16th Century version of a stomacher in a dress
A modern version 
 Both the 16th-century version and the modern version show a lot of  decolletage.


Stay Busy and Stay Happy





Monday, January 25, 2016

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday - Here Today, Gone Tamale by Rebecca Adler



Diane at Bibliophile By the Sea hosts First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros. It's a place to share the first paragraph or two from a book you are currently reading or hope to start soon. Share a book you are reading, then link up at Diane's blog.

I received this cozy mystery in a giveaway at Beth Fish Reads in December. I am anxious to start it.



Here Today, Gone Tamale
Rebecca Adler
Berkley Prime Crime
      / Imprint of Penguin Random House



Chapter 1
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Josie!" Aunt Linda's high-pitched drawl soared like a heat-seeking missile up the wooden stairs from our restaurant below, through my quaint living room and into my sweet but tiny bedroom. 

   There are three things Aunt Linda and Uncle Eddie have in common with tamales: they're unpretentious, comforting, and fattening when consumed in excess. 

So would you read this cozy mystery?  I already like the sounds of this one. Can't you just hear Aunt Lydia?


I'll have a review when I have finished. And thanks again to Beth Fish Reads and Penguin Random House. 



Sunday, January 24, 2016

It's Monday! What Are Reading? Deep Down Dark


It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you are and about to be reading over the week.  It's an opportunity to visit and comment, and er... add to that ever-growing TBR pile!  This meme started with J Kaye's Blog   and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date. So share what you are reading this week and link up with Book Date.

On my Kindle:

Deep Down Dark
Hector Tobar
Farrar, Straus and Giroux/ Picador

From Goodreads and edited by me:

When the San Jose mine collapsed outside of Copiapo, Chile, in August 2010, it trapped thirty-three miners beneath thousands of feet of rock for a record-breaking sixty-nine days. Across the globe, we sat riveted to television and computer screens as journalists flocked to the Atacama desert. While we saw what transpired above ground during the grueling and protracted rescue, the story of the miners experiences below the earth's surface and the lives that led them there hasn't been heard until now. In this masterwork of a Pulitzer Prizewinning journalist, Hector Tobar gains exclusive access to the miners and their stories. The result is a miraculous and emotionally textured account of the thirty-three men who came to think of the San Jose mine as a kind of coffin, as a cave inflicting constant and thundering aural torment, and as a church where they sought redemption through prayer while the world watched from above. It offers an understanding of the families and personal histories that brought los 33 to the mine, and the mystical and spiritual elements that surrounded working in such a dangerous place.


This is the current read for my Face to Face book club. I hope the book editing is better than the Goodreads synopsis.  I do not speak Spanish, but in the blurb from Goodreads, Copiapo the city in Chile was misspelled, as was Hector's name. Also several just bad typing errors. In the last sentence, the word los precedes 33 and I am not sure just what may have been intended. Maybe "these"? Anyway, I could not leave it here with all those obvious errors.

I have put Emma on hold for awhile, until I can acquire the audio version from my library.


 Print Book:

I will probably start on a new Cozy Mystery I won in December from a giveaway at Beth Fist Reads blog. I am looking forward to it.

                                                                  See   Goodreads

 
Hope everyone has a good week.


Stay Busy and Stay Happy





Saturday, January 23, 2016

The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd

The Mermaid ChairThe Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am a fan of Sue Monk Kidd's writing. Her prose is elegantly beautiful. This story of 42-year-old Jessie Sullivan's journey to come to terms with the death of her father, her mother's erratic behavior and her own loss of self, feels very real. I think lots of women have felt this loss. Ms. Kidd tells this story with humor and truth, and with honest compassion. I enjoyed the story of the monks and the abbey, the fable of the mermaid chair, and the description of Egret Island and its inhabitants. I especially liked Kat and Benne. I even liked Jessies' mother, Nelle.

As a woman of a certain age, I could put myself in this story. Not all of it of course, but the parts of feeling that your life was lived in a small box. That your life was lived for others. I totally understand Jessie. I feel for her husband Hugh.  I understand the part about "staying in the marriage", "the small acts of forgiveness", the relationship that changed.



Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Wondrous Words Wednesday 1-20-16 7 Little Words


Wondrous Words Wednesday is a place to share words found while reading or listening, or maybe even playing games. Write a post and link up with Kathy at BermudaOnion's Weblog. 


I play 7 Little Words. After solving the scrambled tiles for
1) engage in a petty argument (6 letters)= bicker
2) political situation (9 letters)
3) uproar (8 letters)
4) exchange of punches= fisticuffs
5)angry dispute= quarrel
6)noisy brawl=fray
7)petty argument=spat.
I still had these sets of letters. ROW, IM,  BRO, DY, IO, DOW, GL


When I finally guessed just by trying all combinations I came up with these words and the puzzle was correct. I had never heard either  of these words. 


#2  political situation = imbroglio

1: a confused mass 

2a: an intricate or complicated situation (as in a drama or novel)

 b: an acutely painful or embarrassing misunderstanding   

 c: a violently confused or bitterly complicated altercation: embroilment

 d: scandal  



#3 uproar = rowdydow

1: noisy excitement: hubbub, to-do

2a: a noisy disturbance or spirited contest: brawl, fight

b: a boisterous party: spree



Do you play 7 Little Words?  Did you know rowdydow or imbroglio? What words did you find this week? 






















Tuesday, January 19, 2016

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday - The Mermaid Chair - 1-19-16







Tuesdays I like to link up with Diane at Bibliophile by The Sea to share the First Chapter First Paragraph of a book that I am reading or plan to read soon. Today I share two paragraphs. If you would like to join us, share the first paragraph (or two) of a book, then link up at Diane's blog.


The Mermaid Chair
Sue Monk Kidd
Penguin Books 2005


PROLOGUE

    In the middle of my marriage, when I was above all Hugh's wife and Dee's mother, one of those unambiguous women with no desire to stir the universe, I fell in love with a Benedictine monk.


CHAPTER ONE

    February 17, 1988, I opened my eyes and heard a procession of sounds: first the phone going off on the opposite side of the bed, rousing us at 5:04 am to what could only be a calamity, then rain pummeling the roof of our old Victorian house, sluicing its sneaky way to the basement, and finally small puffs of air coming from Hugh's lower lip, each one perfectly time, like a metronome. 


So what do you think? Would you read on?

I picked this book up a while ago, after reading The Secret Life of Bees and Traveling With Pomegranates, both by Sue Monk Kidd. I since have read The Invention of Wings, I love her writing. I chose both the first paragraph of the prologue and the first chapter to give a bit of insight into the book.

I am on page 23 and anxious to continue.


Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Sunday, January 17, 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? The Mermaid Chair and Emma




It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you are and about to be reading over the week.  It's an opportunity to visit and comment, and er... add to that ever-growing TBR pile!  This meme started with J Kaye's Blog   and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date. So share what you are reading this week and link up with Book Date.


This week I am still trying to read Emma by Jane Austen. I will persevere. 
I really am thinking of finding the audio version and read it along with the print book. 





And I have started to read  The Mermaid Chair by Sue Monk Kidd.


From Goodreads: 

Sue Monk Kidd's phenomenal debut, The Secret Life of Bees, became a runaway bestseller that is still on the New York Times bestseller list more than two years after its paperback publication. Now, in her luminous new novel, Kidd has woven a transcendent tale that will thrill her legion of fans. Telling the story of Jessie Sullivan -- a love story between a woman and a monk, a woman and her husband, and ultimately a woman and her own soul -- Kidd charts a journey of awakening and self-discovery illuminated with a brilliance that only a writer of her ability could conjure. 


I am just starting on this one. So far it lives up to my expectations of wonderful prose from Sue Monk Kidd.  It will meet requirements for at least 3 of my 2016 Challenges. 






A book with an item of furniture in the title. 






It may even qualify for the Women's Fiction Challenge. I really won't know for sure until I have finished. 



Stay Happy and Stay Busy



Saturday, January 16, 2016

Saturday Snapshots - January 16th


Melinda at West Metro Mommy Reads hosts Saturday Snapshots. To participate in Saturday Snapshot: post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky at Melinda's blog.  Photos can be old or new, and be of any subject as long as they are clean and appropriate for all eyes to see. How much detail you give in the caption is entirely up to you. Please don’t post random photos that you find online.



I have had a Christmas cactus for many years. Most years in blooms pretty well. Not loaded but showy enough. This year only one small bloom. This is yesterday. 


And this is in the early morning today. I apologize for the exposure. It is dark outside and Mr. Busy is still sleeping. 

Normally my green thumb is pretty good. New Year's Day my second amaryllis looked like this:

And then this morning:
This is the second bloom stalk and the one from above is dying in the background. They are gorgeous but they don't last long.  

 This morning I woke up to more snow. Not much but a "skiff" just the same. 

It is still January after all, but my enthusiasm is waning. I don't enjoy the cold at all anymore. 

Last night we watched 3 episodes of House of Cards on Netflix. OMG, I love Kevin Spacey. I hate his character, but he is such a great actor. And Robin Wright is so good as First Lady, Claire Underwood. Can't wait for season 4 in March 2016. 



Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Friday, January 15, 2016

Review: Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail by Cheryl Strayed


Title:   Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail
Author: Cheryl Strayed
Publisher :  Alfred Knopf   2012



Goodreads:

At twenty-two, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother’s death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed. Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life. With no experience or training, driven only by blind will, she would hike more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington State — and she would do it alone.
Told with suspense and style, sparkling with warmth and humor, Wild powerfully captures the terrors and pleasures of one young woman forging ahead against all odds on a journey that maddened, strengthened, and ultimately healed her.



My thoughts:

I found this story to be an honest, raw telling of a remarkable memoir. Some others have said they hated it!  I have no idea why. I am not a literary critic, I am an old lady who likes to read books. Books that share someone's life, books that tell stories I have never heard, books that take me places that I will never visit. Who am I to judge someone else's journey. I have not walked their walk.

I found Cheryl's story to be well told. I have never seen much of California, San Diego for a weekend and a step over the border near Reno NV.  I could see the landscape as she described it. I could smell the desert and the forest. I could share her fear of the unknown, the dark shadows. I could not have continued as long as she did with feet that blistered and bled and shed their toenails. I am in awe of her courage, her tenacity, her honesty. Maybe we didn't need to hear of her "before" lifestyle. But I think it is what drove her to this journey. Maybe we didn't need to hear about her "sex on the beach" so to speak, but it was honest. We are all human, with desires and wants, needs and fears.

I loved this book. I will recommend it to others. I now want to see the movie and I will read other books by this author, as well as the books she read on her quest.



Stay Busy and Stay Happy







This book is : TBR Triple Dog Dare
                                                       Read What You Buy

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Wondrous Words Wednesday 1-13-16


Kathy at Bermuda Onion hosts this weekly meme and gives us a chance to celebrate words we encounter while reading or elsewhere. Join us by posting about some favorite words and then linking up at Kathy's blog.

livelihood - noun

simple definition: a way of earning money in order to live

or: 1) means of support or subsistence
      2)  obsolete:  the quality or state of being lively.

When I encountered this word while reading Take Me With You, I knew what it meant. But the author used it a different way. Discussing climbing:

  "It's my livelihood, August."
   " No, it isn't."
   "How can you say that? You think I don't know my own livelihood?"


The discussion continues with the adult suggesting that the young man's love of climbing is his raison d'etre. His reason for existence.

Ten pages later I came across a word that I had never heard before.

abseil - verb

  August wondered if Seth could give up and abseil down if he didn't want to go on. 

from Wikipedia:
"abseiling from German  abseilen, meaning "to rope down", also called rappelling, is the controlled descent of a vertical drop, such as a rock face, using a rope."

My son and daughter-in-law are climbers and I know the word rappel. So I learned something new this week. And that is what Wondrous Words Wednesday is all about.


Have a great rest of the week.
Stay Busy and Stay Happy



Monday, January 11, 2016

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday - Wild -1-11-16


Every Tuesday I join First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros where Diane shares the first paragraph sometimes two from a book she is reading or plans to read soon. Join us at Bibliophile By the Sea and see what others are reading. 


I have wanted to read this book and see the movie since I first downloaded onto my Kindle. I am a fan of Reese Witherspoon and Laura Dern. Guess I will read the book first, then watch the movie. 




Title: Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Coast Trail
Author: Cheryl Strayed
Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House

PROLOGUE

   The trees were tall, but I was taller, standing above them on a steep mountain slope in northern California. Moments before, I'd removed my hiking boots and the left one had fallen into those trees, first catapulting into the air when my enormous backpack toppled onto it, then skittering across the gravelly trail and flying over the edge, It bounced off of a rocky outcropping several feet beneath me before disappearing into the forest canopy below, impossible to retrieve. I let out a stunned gasp, though I'd been in the wilderness thirty-eight days and by then I'd come to know that anything could happen and that everything would. But that doesn't mean I wasn't shocked when it did. My boot was gone. Actually gone.
   I clutched its mate to my chest like a baby, though of course it was futile. What is one boot without the other boot? It is nothing. It is useless, an orphan forevermore, and I could take no mercy on it. It was a big lug of a thing, of genuine heft, a brown leather Raichle boot with a red lace and silver metal fasts. I lifted it high and threw it with all my might and watched it fall into the lush trees and out of my life.

What do you think? Would you continue?  Or have you already read this one?

I started this one last night and although I am only on page 26, I am already loving it.  Cheryl is one tough cookie. I think she gets her tenacity from her mother.


Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Sunday, January 10, 2016

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? Jan 10, 2016




It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you are and about to be reading over the week.  It's an opportunity to visit and comment, and er... add to that ever-growing TBR pile!  This meme started with J Kaye's Blog   and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date. So share what you are reading this week and link up with Book Date. 

On my Kindle:

Goodreads Synopsis:

     Emily's life has reached an impasse so large that she has decided that she needs to make some big changes. When she makes her decision, she dives in with her whole being to make changes so that she stops disappearing from her own life. Will all the miles help or hurt her? Will things be different in a new place or will she bring all her emotional baggage with her? Can she be independent and learn to trust again?

This one has been on my Kindle since 2013. I don't know what took me so long to decide to read it.



Print Book:


I am still working on this one.  I did not get it finished for the read along in December. Last year I wanted to read more classics, but I did not get any read. So this year I will again work on reading more classics. 

Next on my Kindle:

Everyone else has probably already read this, but I have been holding out. Why, I do not know. But I am about to dig in. 

What are you reading?

Stay Busy and Stay Happy