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Archive for the ‘Library Loot’ Category

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

Well, two weeks makes quite a difference, doesn’t it?  My city library closed a week and a half ago but luckily I was prepared and had been stocking up for self-isolation already:

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I’m anticipating these measures will last for months rather than weeks so, in the interests of having something to post about in the future, will hold off talking about my physical loot for a while. For now I thought I’d show you some of the e-books that have come in recently:

My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell – If you’ve seen a “most anticipated books of 2020” list, no doubt this was on it.  I’m certainly intrigued. (Book Depository)

Death in Captivity by Michael Gilbert –  I’m not a big fan of crime or mystery books so have read very little from the British Library Crime Classics series but the Northern Italian setting has me intrigued for this tale.  (Book Depository)

Cutting Back by Leslie Buck – Since my travel plans for this year are being curtailed (my May trip to Czech Republic has been cancelled, no surprise.  Not terribly hopeful for my October trip to Spain at this stage either) I am resigning myself to 2020 as my year of armchair travelling.  To balance out my usually euro-centric focus, I’ve picked up this memoir from a woman who moved to Kyoto to learn the Japanese art of pruning. (Book Depository)

Something to Live For by Richard Roper – Now seems like the right time for an uplifting book about a lonely man finally learning to make connections.  An ironic time, but still the right time. (Book Depository)

If Morning Ever Comes by Anne Tyler – I recently sent a list of book recommendations to a friend and included a different Anne Tyler title on it, which reminded me of how good she is and how many of her books I have left to read. (Book Depository)

In Five Years by Rebecca Serle – Serle’s trademark seems to be “clever” book concepts.  She had a hit with The Dinner List (which conceptually was interesting but in execution was too boring for me to finish) and continues in her newest release with a woman who wakes up five years in the future, when her life is completely different than expected.  After an hour, she wakes up back in the present time.  But what did that glimpse of the future mean for her?  (Book Depository)

What did you pick up this week?  Or check out?  Could you even physically check things out where you live (if you were not practicing responsible social distancing)?

 

 

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

Oh friends, the world feels like it’s changing day by day right now, doesn’t it?  But don’t worry: I am prepared.  Last night I dropped by the library to return a couple of things.  But then I started thinking about what would happen if the libraries were to be closed.  Without any notice.  When I had just returned things.  What kind of a fool am I?  This of course drove me into a panic so I did the only sensible thing: I dashed around in the 10 minutes before the library closed and grabbed 7 books just to be safe.  I haven’t included them below but I believe there are a couple of Dorothy Sayers, a history of the Ukraine, and at least one travel book.  I’m supposed to be leaving for the Czech Republic in early May but travel books may have to substitute for real travel this spring the way things are going.

The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley – I was number one in the queue for this much hyped novel and, no surprise, read it immediately after picking it up over the weekend.  I love stories about people sharing their insecurities and building a community together, so this was perfect for me.  I plan to write more about it soon. (Book Depository)

The Importance of Being Aisling by Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen – Oh the unfairness of life!  The first Aisling book came out back in 2017 and it was a breeze for me to buy on my e-reader while I was travelling in Europe.  It kept me laughing through a long and very bumpy travel day from Bologna to Krakow via Amsterdam that summer.  But I’ve been living in a wasteland since then as the sequels have been impossible to find in North America.  The interlibrary loan system has, as usual, come to the rescue and sourced me a copy from a small town deep in the Rocky Mountains.  (Book Depository)

A Castle in the Clouds by Kerstin Gier – Speaking of mountains, I read about this YA novel on NPR a while back and couldn’t resist the idea of a mystery set in an alpine hotel with an international array of guests and staff.  (Book Depository)

Letters from Russia by Astolphe de Custine – In 1839, the Marquis de Custine travelled through Russia and wrote these letters that were so insightful and damning that both Czarist and Communist regimes banned them in future years.  (Book Depository)

Yes No Maybe So by Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saeed – Another YA!  Who am I?  Someone who gets their book recommendations on Twitter, in this case (I think?) from YA author S.K. Ali (whose Love from A to Z I read at the end of last year and thoroughly enjoyed).  (Book Depository)


Hop, Skip, Go by John Rossant and Stephen Baker – An urban expert and a business journalist team up to look at the ways that the mobility revolution will change our lives (and has already). (Book Depository)

Born in the GDR by Hester Vaizey – A look at the lives of eight Germans who grew up in the GDR. (Book Depository)

Where Stands a Winged Sentry by Margaret Kennedy – I saw in the most recent newsletter from Handheld Press that they will be releasing this memoir from Kennedy of her experiences at the beginning of the Second World War in March 2021.  Rather than wait a full year, I turned instead to the library.  I’ve borrowed this a couple of time before but not ever got around to it – yet.

What did you pick up this week? Remember: books are the only acceptable thing to stockpile.  Leave the hand sanitizer and toilet paper at the store; head to your library instead when the hoarding mood strikes.

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

So many books and so little time to write about them!  I was off to see Roxane Gay speak last night so this is being written in a mad rush after that and will doubtlessly do disservice to most of the books, so let’s focus on the only one that matters:

Rhododendron Pie by Margery Sharp – Yes, I have tracked down a copy.  It’s the first time I’ve ever paid for an interlibrary loan but at only $15 came in far, far cheaper than any edition I’ve ever seen for sale (the cheapest one on AbeBooks right now is $280 in comparison).  Barb, always my guide to Margery Sharp, enthused about it years and years ago and I’m excited to finally get to try it for myself.

Now onto the rest:

At the Pond (Book Depository)

Poems New and Collected by Wisława Szymborska (Book Depository)

Solo by Signe Johansen (Book Depository)

Polaris Rising by Jessie Mihalik (Book Depository)

All for Nothing by Walter Kempowski (Book Depository)

My Beautiful Enemy by Sherry Thomas (Book Depository)

Aria by Nazanine Hozar (Book Depository)

The Blessed Girl by Angela Makholwa (Book Depository)

Pravda Ha Ha by Rory MacLean (Book Depository)

What did you pick up this week?

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

A busy week here.  I’m travelling for work (leaving behind warm, daffodil-filled Vancouver for a much colder clime), fighting a painful cough/cold, juggling lots of social commitments (tied in with the travelling), and trying to fit in time for reading in the midst of everything.  And there are lots of books to tempt me when I do find the time:

A Mad Catastrophe by Geoffrey Wawro – I went to see 1917 over the weekend and, while I enjoyed it, it did make me think about how little we see/read about what that war was like for the soldiers of the Central Powers.  I had great-grandfathers fighting on both sides but I know so, so much more about what my English-Canadian ancestor’s experience would have been like.  I’m hoping this book helps fill in some of the gaps for me.  (Book Depository)

Berezina by Sylvain Tesson – Four friends, two motorcycles (with sidecars!) and a journey in Napoleon’s footsteps from Moscow to Paris.  History, travel, adventure – an ideal combo.  (Book Depository)

Autumn Light by Pico Iyer – I always love hearing Pico Iyer talk about his books but I’ve yet to actually read one.  This, his newest release, is about his life in Japan following his father-in-law’s death.  It sounds quiet and meditative and possibly just what I need right now.  (Book Depository)

Cuckoo in June by Jane Oliver and Ann Stafford – I loved Business as Usual by Oliver and Stafford (coming soon from Handheld Press) so looked to see if I could track down anything more by them.  This was the only thing available in the interlibrary loan catalogue and I know nothing about it – always fun to have a surprise!

The Peppermint Tea Chronicles by Alexander McCall Smith – Let’s be clear: when you are feeling sick and pathetic, that is the perfect time for a new 44 Scotland Street book.  (Book Depository)

The Shining Company by Rosemary Sutcliff – I’m on a Sutcliff reading kick right now and, having finished with the Roman Britain trilogy, am looking forward to this tale set in 8th century Britain.  (Book Depository)

What did you pick up this week?

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

Business as Usual by Jane Oliver and Ann Stafford – As soon as I heard about this 1933 gem, I knew I had to read it.  It’s an epistolary novel about a young woman who, engaged to a doctor at home in Edinburgh but still a year away from getting married, moves to London and starts work in a department store library.  Handheld Press is reissuing it in March and it’s an absolute must-buy for me.  I adored it and will definitely be posting more about it closer to publication day.

Jackaroo by Cynthia Voigt – Blog reader Pam mentioned rereading Voigt recently, which prompted me to seek this out.  It’s been 20 years since I read anything by Voigt but my vague memories are positive so I’ll be interested to see how this goes.

On Foot to the Golden Horn by Jason Goodwin – I can only go so long without reading about walking adventures!  In this case, Goodwin and his friends walked across Eastern Europe to reach Istanbul.

One More Croissant for the Road by Felicity Cloake – On bicycle rather than on foot, I have been extraordinarily excited to read this chronicle of Cloake’s culinary cycling tour of France.  (Book Depository)

To Venice with Love by Philip Gwynne Jones – As always, I am certain to track down all expat memoirs, especially when one is set in my favourite Italian city.  (Book Depository)

When Miss Emmie was in Russia by Harvey Pitcher – A look at the lives of British governesses in Russia before, during, and after the Revolution.  (Book Depository)

What did you pick up this week?

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

It is cold and snowy here, which is frankly ridiculous.  We do not live in Vancouver to be snowed upon in January.  The snowdrops were out and and the daffodils three inches out of the ground before this madness started.  Sigh.

But the positive of horrible weather is that it means I am not distracted by wanting to be outside and therefore have more time for reading!  Which is good because all my holds suddenly arrived at once (with more on the way for next week):

The Magnolia Sword by Sherry Thomas – IT’S HERE!!!  I love the story of Mulan and I adore Sherry Thomas’ writing, so this seems like an unbeatable combination.  Very, very excited to start on this.  (Book Depository)

A Half Baked Idea by Olivia Potts – I spend a fair amount of time perusing the Slightly Foxed website and noticed this on there (in the books from other publishers section).  Grieving after her mother’s unexpected death, Potts left her career as a barrister and retrained at Le Cordon Bleu.  How could I not want to read about that? (Book Depository)

The Lantern Bearers by Rosemary Sutcliff – Slightly Foxed is reissuing this in September (my order is already placed) but I’ve been having so much fun rereading Sutcliff’s Roman books (The Eagle of the Ninth and The Silver Branch) that I couldn’t wait that long.  (Book Depository)

Eggs or Anarchy by William Sitwell – After reading A Green and Pleasant Land in 2019 (it was one of my favourites for the year), I finally tracked this down via interlibrary loan after having had it on my to-read list for years.  It’s a biography of Lord Woolton, the man who was tasked with keeping Britain fed during the Second World War.  (Book Depository)

The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter by Theodora Goss – I honestly don’t know much about this but I saw people enthusing about subsequent books in the series (can’t remember where – possibly Tor.com) that I thought I’d give it a try.  (Book Depository)

A Castle in Wartime by Catherine Bailey – Praised by Kate Atkinson as a book that contains “more tension, more plot in fact, than any thriller”, I’m so looking forward to this.  It has also been published in the UK as The Lost Boys. (Book Depository)

Would Like to Meet by Rachel Winters – A good rom-com is a very welcome distraction at any time of year but especially when it is absolutely vile outside and you want to forget everything else.  It’s been ages since I read a book in a single evening but I raced through this fun story about a young woman whose famous screenwriter client is months behind on his promised rom-com script.  To help inspire him, she sets about engineering meet-cutes of her own and reporting back on her progress. (Book Depository)

In a Land of Paper Gods by Rebecca Mackenzie – Sarra Manning put this on her best books of the year list back in 2016 (!!! How have three years passed so quickly?) and I’ve finally been organized enough to track it down via interlibrary loan.  (Book Depository)

Salt on Your Tongue by Charlotte Runcie –  Another discovery on the Slightly Foxed website.  (Book Depository)

What did you pick up this week?

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badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Sharlene from Real Life Reading that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries.

Happy New Year!  I hope 2020 is off to a great start for everyone.  Our family traditions here don’t allow much time for reading (lots of outdoor time to ensure the year gets off to a healthy start, followed by cooking time to ensure it also begins with lots of leftovers) but I’ve got plenty of books ready to go.  (So I am, of course, starting the year by reading something off my own shelves.  Oh well.)

Here’s what I’ve picked up most recently:

The Seine by Elaine Sciolino – I loved Sciolino’s last book, The Only Street in Paris, about the rue des Martyrs and can’t wait to revisit Paris in her company.  (Book Depository)

Brief Flower by Dorothy Evelyn Smith – I am happy to report that my interlibrary loan copy of this has no dustjacket and therefore no extremely creepy child.  I’m trying to track down another of Smith’s books (O, The Brave Music, which Simon raved about last year) but in the meantime thought I’d try one of her other books.  There’s a little info on it on Goodreads and I thought I’d give it a try.

Poems of Arab Andalusia translated by Cola Franzen – My big travel plan for 2020 is to spend a couple of weeks in Andalusia next autumn.  It’s a long wait so until then I’ll content myself by reading as much as I can about it.  The main reason I’m interested in going is the region’s Arab history so this volume of poetry seemed perfect.  It will also inevitably remind me of how much I need to reread The Lions of Al-Rassan (which I am 100% okay with).  (Book Depository)

Love from A to Z by S.K. Ali – In my last Library Loot post, I mentioned picking up a different YA book by Ali, which I haven’t actually read yet.  But at the same time I’d placed a hold on this, her newest release about two Muslim teens who meet in Qatar.  I read it just after picking it up and really enjoyed it.  And I don’t think I’d ever read something set in Qatar before! (Book Depository)

The Rosie Result by Graeme Simsion – Like everyone who read it, I adored The Rosie Project and can’t resist its sequels (even though I though the second book wasn’t very good).  Hoping for better things with this one! (Book Depository)

Less by Andrew Sean Greer – The time has finally come.  I have heard so many glowing, enthusiastic things about this novel from readers I trust that I am finally overcoming my completely illogical bias against Pulizter Prize-winners to give it a try. (Book Depository)

What did you pick up this week?

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