Reading for the Quarantine

sableincal

What with being encouraged to stay home in order to stay healthy and flatten the curve, I thought that we might suggest some good reading for the duration. Here are three books I've loved that others might also enjoy:


1. The Stand, by Stephen King. A mega-virus sweeps the earth, wiping out almost the entire population. Survivors band together and a struggle between good and evil ensues. This book does not contain the horror and usual creepiness that SK is famous for. It is heavy on plot and character and is, imo, a great read. I finished it days before the coronavirus broke into the news, and may re-read it. I was pleased to learn that CBS has a miniseries based on the book ready for airing this fall.


2. The Plague (La Peste), by Albert Camus. The Mediterranean city of Oran is quarantined off from the rest of the world because of a plague; Camus creates a couple of immortal characters who contend with the situation. This book can be read as a history of Oran, which did suffer a couple of devastating plagues, but also as a metaphor for the Nazi occupation of Paris, which so deeply affected Camus and his cadre of other existentialist writers. A great classic!


3. And The Band Played On, by Randy Shilts. With the publication of this book in 1987 Randy Shilts made a truly great contribution to the literature surrounding the AIDS plague. Beginning with the collapse of a Danish doctor in Zaire with very odd symptoms, Shilts takes us in painstaking detail through the beginning and mid-life of the AIDS epidemic. You love some of the people you meet in this story and at the same time you want to scream at the ignorance and mishandling of it all, especially in its early years. Shilts tells a tragic story in a thrilling way; I've read it a few times.


Good reading!

Sable

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Tilly Teabag

With so much gloom and doom on the news and opinion articles, I find myself wanting lighter subject matters.

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adoptedbyhounds

Thanks so much for posting this, Sable!

I didn't know what "Reader's Paradise" was, so I clicked on it. I had no idea Houzz had a reader's forum. Thanks for sharing!!!

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annpanagain

I would prefer light reading! I was once stuck in my Home Decor shop during a hot summer with few customers at lunch time and I got books like "Ice Station Zebra" from the library.

The Decameron was also an 'escape from the plague' book, I understand.

Welcome to new RP'ers.

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jerzeegirl (FL zone 9B)(9b)

Instead we turned to TV and watched Outbreak (for the second time) and Containment (a limited miniseries). Containment, although ridiculous, in many ways has some parallels as to what is going on in Italy.

As far as reading goes Hot Zone by RIchard Preston is a must read (based on a New Yorker article).


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Ziemia(6a)

AIDS was not a plague.

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provogal

The Last Ship (this was made into a series but the book is better), Doomsday Book by Connie Willis, On the Beach by Neville Shute

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jerzeegirl (FL zone 9B)(9b)

Plague with a lower case p.

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llucy

Just finished Doomsday Book by Connie Willis. A time travel novel that involves both the black plague of 1348 and an epidemic in 2054.

Recently read Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. A novel that mainly takes place 20 years after a devastating pandemic.

Reading about pandemics during one may not be for everyone, but I'm glad I discovered these two wonderful writers. I'm looking forward to reading many varied novels from both.

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barncatz

ilucy, I have Emily St. John Mandel's new book, The Glass Hotel, on my Want To Read list. It's being published Mar 24.

Meanwhile, I bought a hard copy - very unusual for me anymore - of the final book in Hilary Mantel's Cromwell trilogy, The Mirror & the Light. Due to be delivered today!!!

Before I let myself read it, tho, I'm starting The Bear by Andrew Krivak.

Andrew Krivak paints a gentler picture in his lyrical third novel, “The Bear,” which finds an unnamed father and daughter alone in a wilderness seemingly untouched by whatever catastrophe has rendered them the last two humans on earth. They are embedded in the rhythms of the natural world, their activities organized by the seasons. ...glass for a window has been passed down through at least three generations, “so precious a thing had it become as the skill for making it was lost.” Krivak’s gorgeous descriptions suggest a world that has returned to its proper equilibrium and rightful inhabitants: the animals and trees whose voices the girl discovers she can hear.


The Bear sounds to me like it's similar to Alice Hoffman's gutting WWII novel, The World That We Knew, my favorite read in quite a while. How do we bend when change assails us? What comforts do we choose in the face of loss?

Krivak’s serene and contemplative novel invites us to consider a vision of time as circular, of existence as grand and eternal beyond the grasp of individuals — and of a world able to outlive human destructiveness.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/books/andrew-krivaks-the-bear-takes-a-gentler-approach-to-post-apocalyptic-fiction/2020/02/13/b5ab50b2-481c-11ea-8124-0ca81effcdfb_story.html

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AnnKH

Add "day of the Triffids" to the list.

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jerzeegirl (FL zone 9B)(9b)

FYI Access to the New York Times' Coronavirus coverage is free at the moment.

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roxanna7

For a lot of great reading (IMO), start with S.M. Stirling's trilogy in order: Island in the Sea of Time, Against the Tide of Years, On the Oceans of Eternity. Plot derives from an electromagnetic burst, not a plague, which sends the characters back in time to 1250 BC. How the characters cope and move forward is fascinating. He then wrote a very long series known as The Emberverse, which I found equally engaging.

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skibby (zone 4 Vermont)

I've had enough gloom and doom so it's very light reading for me right now. Reading The Wednesday Letters by Jason Wright (so light it practically floats) which is for book club next time. This month was reader's choice where everyone reads what they want and then give a review at the meeting. My book was The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett. A hit apparently, as two members asked to borrow it. I was really looking forward to this meeting to get suggestions for titles but we only had 3 out of 10 attend.

Something else happened there. A woman looked at me and said (in a not very nice way) "Do you do anything else besides read?" I said "no, not much". It really bothered me though. She was about to say something else but didn't. I imagine it was some critical remark about my lack of housekeeping. I'm glad she didn't go there. Sometimes I have a hard time keeping my good manners around me.

Up after that will be Bodies in the Library by Marty Wingate. Evidentally this is the beginning of a new series. We'll see. Also have a new Jack Reacher short story. I'm sure I have some light reading on my shelves too, and juvy fiction. My Library has suspended all programs and meetings. Also all Interlibrary loans. (I hope my request came through before that took effect.)

Read what you need to read to maintain your equilibrium. I'll be checking back here more that usual, as it helps.

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batyabeth

yay and cheers for jack reacher, and especially for Connie Willis, one of my favorites (her The Bellweather is shorter and delightful. I am registered on two digital libraries, and though I really prefer holding a book, it does well in a pinch. Haven't gotten to Emily St john Mandel yet but she's on my list. I enjoyed The Last Ship, it was well done. Anything at all by William Gibson and Neal Stephenson, Seanan McGuire. I have more.................

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petalique

A Very Stable Genius — Phil Rucker and Carol Loenig

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petalique

Will there be a run on hammocks? Reading lamps? Eyeglasses? 🤨

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maifleur03

I have read many of the books mentioned above plus others in the Mystery/Thriller category and would suggest that as you read them the more accurate well researched ones can provide information to help protect you and your families. It is time for light froth for me.

I am expecting the libraries to close so will be turning to online sources.

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jerzeegirl (FL zone 9B)(9b)

This book was really good:

The Speckled Monster: A Historical Tale of Battling Smallpox by Jennifer Lee Carrell.

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barncatz

jerzeegirl, I remember thinking that looked interesting a while back, but somehow it slipped off my radar. Thanks for the reminder.

skibby, I'd answer the same way - about reading. I was recommending a book I was reading to someone recently who isn't much of a reader, which is fine, but it showed me how grateful I am that I can be so mesmerized by a book.

That reminds me - I am really enjoying Erik Larson's newest - The Splendid and The Vile - about Churchill and the Battle of Britain. (Hmmm, also very timely, in a way I hadn't cottoned to even a couple weeks ago.) Full of fascinating details that make you feel part of what's being described.

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jerzeegirl (FL zone 9B)(9b)

I have that Erik Larson on hold at the library. There are about 4 million people ahead of me...lol.

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palisades_

Will there be a run on hammocks? Reading lamps? Eyeglasses?

No run for me. Got them years ago.

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

I recently read the non-fiction "Killers of the Flower Moon," a look into an epidemic of murders in the Osage Nation in Oklahoma during the 1920s. Besides the obvious recounting of greed and bigotry, the picture drawn of law enforcement of the period is almost as frightening. David Grann's book made a number of "Best Book of the Year" lists for the year of its release.

*

And The Band Played On, by Randy Shilts.

I read this years ago, and remember that San Francisco Mayor Dianne Feinstein closed down the bathhouses to howls of protest from some in the gay community.

History shows that she was correct.

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donnamira

Consider David Quammen's Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic, published in 2012. He nails it. Here's the Washington Post review from October 2012: Washington Post Review: Spillover

barncatz, I saw the Post review of Krivak's The Bear also, and was intrigued enough to put it on hold at the library.



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Zeus

i know this is reading. but most libraries offer e-learning. roseta stone, master series programs. learn spanish!

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

learn spanish!

I read online Italian newspapers to keep up with the language, and it's been really scaring me since February 21.


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elvis

I like escapist stuff, Jason Bourne stories, just about anything by Clancy, and travel. An Embarassment of Mangoes was really good. I wonder if anyone here has read it.

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Olychick

I would recommend Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks about the Plague. It's absolutely wonderful, despite the subject.

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socks(10a)

There are some good recommendations here, but like Elvis I think I need to read something besides plague books, for mental escape, altho’ I normally like that genre

If you are looking to buy used books online, I recommend two sources:

thriftbooks.com

abe.com

I’ve ordered two books, easy reading stuff: (If I toughen up, I’ll graduate to the plague reading. The smallpox one looks good.)

Bog Child

Book of Unnecessary Quotation Marks (supposedly funny)—for grammarians

Also saw a couple on Overdrive through the library.

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jerzeegirl (FL zone 9B)(9b)

I read Year of Wonders. I also recommend it.

I have a trove of Graham Greene books that I put aside to read (probably 10 years ago) and never got to it. Last month I was getting rid of a bookcase in the guest room to put a dresser there for guests clothes. Of course that meant I had to get rid of lots and lots of books. A very painful experience. I was able to donate some of the art books to some local arts organizations' libraries. Yay! Some went on eBay. Others sitting in boxes in limbo now. And the ones I read get placed in our neighborhood's "Little Library". Anyway, I am determined to read all the novels before they go bye bye - the first was Grapes of Wrath (which I never read in school). Yikes! The second was Greene's The Tenth Man. Now I am reading Greene's The Human Factor. It's a British spy book. I am enjoying it. On deck is an Elmore Leonard.

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merryworld

Don't forget the classic Love in the Time of Cholera or Daniel Defoe's A Journal of the Plague Year. Personally, I'm in the escapist book camp. There's always Jane Austen and maybe we should revive the practice of curtsying and bowing.

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elvis

Appropriate in these times. Certainly no hand-kissing!

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chisue

I have Mantel's last in the trilogy -- 700+ pages, but I'm a fast reader, so DH brought us half a dozen more novels before our library was declared closed on Friday at 5 p.m. I can read about Elizabeth I at age two in the Cromwell tome and Elizabeth I on her deathbed in Phillips' The King at the Edge of the World, i.e., Scotland. Plenty of skulduggery in both.

My Chicago Public Schools teacher DIL is trying to teach algebra to 11, 12 and 13 year olds...from home. (Many have no computers or internet; some are officially homeless.) My DGD (parochial school) and DGS (CPS) are also home. Fortuntely for them, "There's a teacher in the house".

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skibby (zone 4 Vermont)

Elvis - the Mango book sounds great according to the summary I just read. They don't have it at my Library though so I'll have to look for it at a sale. I'm pretty lucky that way though. Speaking of lucky - I just got notified that I won a local paper sponsered contest and the prize is a $29 gift card from any local business. (29 because of Leap Year). I chose the speciality bakery since I wanted something that was pricey, a treat that I wouldn't necessarily get for myself. Their cheesecake is delish but I'm not ruling anything out. Lucky me!!

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barncatz

Chisue - I was supposed to get Mantel's book delivered on Thursday, then the tracking said yesterday and then I got an email saying Tuesday!

Have you started it?

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Annie Deighnaugh

Well if you're looking for topical reading, how about "Guns Germs and Steel"

If you want to be really horrified, read "The Sixth Extinction".

And then there are so many dystopian future books out there to choose from...might help prepare for what may be to come like "Station Eleven".

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Rosefolly(9/Sunset 16)

Some excellent suggestions. I may try some of them. Some I have already read.

Right now though I am bingeing more escapist fare. We are in a semi-voluntary lockdown. This afternoon the governor of California told all residents over 65 to shelter at home and not go out. He did say we can go for walks (we will) and I assume we can go for medical appointments. No idea how long this will last, but two weeks seems to be an optimistic minimum. I expect it will go on longer than that.

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elvis

If the astronauts can do it in very confined spaces, surely we can do this in the comfort of our own homes?

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annpanagain

I was surprised to find the shops at the local Mall back to normal this (Monday) morning. I popped in to see if I could get The Mirror and the Light and did find a copy in K Mart, a hardcover for $A22! That is cheap so I indulged in some Walkers Shortbread packs, a guilty indulgence I usually get at Christmas!

We Aussie pensioners are getting $A750 to boost the economy so I am looking into buying a large screen laptop. I used to have a larger screen IBM but when it died, got a smaller one as I was travelling. Not now, sadly and a large screen would suit me again. I can watch video clips and read better that way.

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FinallyHome

Following.

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annpanagain

The Plague Road, an historical mystery by L.C. Tyler

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barncatz

annpanagain, I just added you to my "People I am Jealous Of" list. For both the book ( you and Chisue) and the Shortbread!

I can make my own shortbread but am helplessly waiting on the poor delivery person for the book.

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Annie Deighnaugh

As an aside, one of our local libraries is now offering curbside service so you don't have to go in to get the books you want.

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jerzeegirl (FL zone 9B)(9b)

If you want to be really horrified, read "The Sixth Extinction".

This is a great book but frightening. We are living through the sixth extinction!

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kathy_t

Annie - What a nice service your library is offering!

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vee_new

Somewhere I have a copy of Ben Gummer's The Scourging Angel a rather dry look at the Black Death and its spread from Europe and up through England from the southern ports. I think Gummer must have written it as a university thesis and has used original records to trace the spread of the disease. From what I understand it is still not know what this plague was.

On a much lighter note if you can 'take' Ken Follett's work World Without End deals with the same subject but as part of his long series about cathedral-building in Medieval England.

An enjoyable book which starts with the Great Plague of 1665 is The Vizard Mask by Diana Norman. It begins with a rat leaving a ship . . . while feeling under-the-weather.

And though most of us in the UK of a 'certain age' are still feeling fine we are told to expect to have to go into lock down within a week or two. Luckily as we live in a rural area this is not too difficult as we don't crave the bright lights and the attractions of the city nor do we need the company of endless friends around us . . . but shopping could become an issue. Are dock leaves a good substitute for loo paper?

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Annie Deighnaugh

If instead you want to take a mental vacation and go spend some time in a simpler time and lifestyle with gentle stories, I recommend the books by David Grayson. "Adventures in Friendship" "Adventures in Contentment" "Adventures in Solitude" and others. Some are available for free downloads from Project Gutenberg and they are sweet and delightful.

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skibby (zone 4 Vermont)

I've just started Marty Wingate's book (The Bodies in the Library) and it turns out to be a cozy mystery. Not far in yet but fun indeed. I'm liking cozies in light of the times and would like to pursue more. You've probably addressed this a million times already and I don't know my way around them, but does anyone have recommendations for cozies for me? I particularly like a series with interesting settings like libraries, bookstores or the like or involved with things like gardening, music, fiber arts, cooking. The absence of any of the above is not a deal breaker, so anything fun. A charming protagonist is a plus! Thank you! I appreciate any suggestions.

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Olychick

skibby, The Story of Arthur Truluv and the Rosie Project might be enjoyable for you. If you like Arthur, there is a follow up book, Night of Miracles. Not particularly themes you mentioned, but good. Oh, and The Whole Town is Talking by Fannie Flagg. I have a couple of cooking/food novels in mind, but have to look them up. Will edit and add when I find the titles.

eta: I could only find one on my list: Kitchens of the Great Midwest, A Novel. I'll keep looking for the other.

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Annie Deighnaugh

I came across this: https://www.townandcountrymag.com/leisure/arts-and-culture/a31540805/decameron-sudden-popularity-coronavirus/?utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=socialflowFBTCO&utm_medium=social-media&fbclid=IwAR0hZrvV-BMNDkw-6Po8ZEIttPOgEwnzOBh-r1X20iw8nkwDHAtsyIWSH1U

It's trending on Twitter and number one on Amazon's list of Best Sellers in Italian Literature. We asked a professor of Italian studies for insight into Giovanni Boccaccio’s 1353 classic, set in Italy during the Black Death.

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

Reading about the Twitter trend, I realized that my sister-in-law had given me the Decameron years ago . . . in Italian. Time to test my reading ability of older texts.

The woodcuts are from an edition issued in 1492. I wonder if the cover woodcut was a little racey for the times; a couple in bed with amorous intentions being observed by what appears to be a monk.

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Rosefolly(9/Sunset 16)

News - the 6 counties of the SF Bay Area have just shut down for 3 weeks. Medical and first responders and people who work in grocery stores are allowed to go to work, and the rest of us are to stay at home, except of course when going to the grocery store or medical appointments. We are allowed to go for exercise walks, so long as we stay away from other people. Libraries are closed. Tom and I think we probably have enough food to last, though we may be down to beans and oatmeal toward the end.

Now it the time I value my TBR pile! Although we can still download ebooks from the library.

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annpanagain

Our Supermarkets are opening an hour early to allow proven seniors and the disabled to shop in comfort. The pushing and jostling of panic buyers has been disgraceful. One blind woman said she had toilet rolls taken from her trolley!

To make things easier, we can buy an assembled pack of necessities for $30.

A group of volunteers will shop for you or phone to stop people who are stuck at home from feeling lonely.

This whole situation is so unreal, I feel it is just a bad dream after watching a disaster movie and wish it were!

Have any of the plague books mentioned the lack of T/P and the fights to buy it? A truck load caught fire and was referred to in the TV news as "precious cargo"!

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annpanagain

Skibby, If you check the Stopyourkillingme website and click on Genre at the left, you will find plenty of cosies and humorous titles.

One of my favourites is Laura Levine's Jaine Austen series. There ia also a series about a library in a lighthouse by Eva Gates but you have to imagine it holds more than a real lighthouse would, spacewise!

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merryworld

Don't forget The Andromeda Strain, classic Michael Crichton.

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Current Resident(z4 WI)

Great suggestions! I love to read books as Im travelling that take place in the places I'm visiting - so this thread is kind of in that same vein.

I just finished "Voices From Chernobyl" Yikes - as the author writes "These people have already seen what for everyone else is still unknown. I felt like I was recording the future." Meaning that with so many thousands of aging crumbling reactors and world govts increasingly in disarray .... this is likely a future for many of us.

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georgia_peach(7b - GA USA)

I too prefer lighter fiction right now.

However, if you enjoy historicals, I can recommend Judith Merkle Riley's Margaret of Ashbury trilogy, starting with A Vision Light. The lead character Margaret develops miraculous healing abilities after being left for dead during the black plague.

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adoptedbyhounds

"Consider David Quammen's Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic, published in 2012. He nails it. Here's the Washington Post review from October 2012: Washington Post Review: Spillover"

Thanks for the suggestion! I promptly ordered it for my Ipad, and started reading it yesterday. Will return to it again this afternoon.

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Rosefolly(9/Sunset 16)

I enjoyed the Judith Merkle Riley novels as well.

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annpanagain

Barncatz, I hope you have your book by now. I haven't started mine as I have library books to deal with first. I am not reading so much now as I am watching more news and current affairs programs on TV to find out what the latest update on the situation might be. Things can change by the hour.

My son is taking a caravan trip around an island offshore so I hope he can get back to mainland Australia and won't get stuck with State border closures.

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masgar14

Maybe "The Road" and plenty by Margaret Atwood , master in Dystopian future and speculative novels.


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Elizabeth

There is no way I am reading about plagues. Things are bad enough. I would not call that entertainment. Cheerful, positive reading for me, thank you.

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barncatz

I want to thank everyone who recommended Geraldine Brooks Year of Wonders. I bought the e-book and just finished it. So, so good!

I did get the new Hilary Mantel book, ( yay! Who cares about staying in?) but I had to finish Year of Wonders first.

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Rosefolly(9/Sunset 16)

It is time like these that I am glad I have a generous stack of books I bought and never got around to reading, but which still interest me. However, I find instead that I am bingeing on very lightweight books. Just now I am finishing up the Ilona Andrews urban fantasy novels. Not at all my typical fare, but very satisfying to me just now. I do enjoy their kick-a$$ heroines. The bedroom scenes are a bit tedious, but easy enough to skip. Thanks to the RP member who recommended her Innkeeper series. I went on from there.

Also a movie - I saw the latest version of Emma in the theater just before we all realized that going to a theater was not the brightest thing to do. I heartily recommend it to any Jane Austen fans. I've now seen five different screen versions of Emma, and for me, this was the best. As a bonus, we have the joy of the wonderful Bill Nighy who plays Emma's father Mr. Woodhouse. He is just as superb as you would expect him to be. The movie has gone abruptly to Amazon, as I expect a lot of newer movies will, and you can pay to view it as you shelter at home.

I almost forgot to mention this, but Tom and I are putting together jigsaw puzzles. I ordered a dozen from Amazon, mostly easy 300-500 piece ones but a couple of 1000 piece puzzles. We are having a blast. It makes a break from reading, taking walks, and doing household chores. I have some mail-order plants to put into the garden, but I am saving that for tomorrow. We just decide that we will plant a couple of tomatoes after all. We removed our raised tomato beds this spring because they were sadly deteriorated, but we have several largish pots. We're trying to stay out of stores as much as we can, and some fresh tomatoes will be welcome on our plates this summer. Right now I am enjoying our oranges and lemons. Later in the year we'll have apricots and plums, finishing up with apples in the fall. I am planning for the long haul. If things get better faster than I'm guessing, no harm is done. I tend to grumble about taking care of this big back yard, but right now I'm grateful for it.


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Annie Deighnaugh

Our library is officially closed. Can't return books, no curbside service. Who knows when they'll reopen or in what state. So either electronic or time to hit all those books on my library shelves I've never cracked. Most are classics...going to be interesting times.

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lemonhead101

Don't forget that "Alas Babylon" by Pat Frank is also a good speculative fiction book about what happens after a world event changes things....

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sableincal

Am also doing puzzles, but online. Easier for me, as we have two cats and there is no place in our home to do a puzzle that the kitties can't reach. There are a vast amount of them online, every possible subject, and they can be "cut" to so many numbers and shapes of pieces. I listen to talk radio while playing. Most enjoyable!

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elvis

Online jigsaw puzzles, whoda thunk it?

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Olychick

barncatz, I loved the Year of Wonders!! So much! Glad you liked it, too.

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barncatz

Just recommended it to my 30 something daughter, Olychick.

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sheri_z6

Lemonhead, I read Alas, Babylon when I was a teenager and it made quite an impression (at that point in time the Cold War was at its height). I still have my paperback copy of the book. I also have Year of Wonders somewhere in the house, unread. Maybe it's time to do a little bookcase inventory, lol.

Rosefolly, I'm glad you're enjoying Ilona Andrews. I just love their books, total escape reading :)

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heri_cles

Talk radio, LOL.

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heri_cles

A Night to Remember by Walter Lord

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annpanagain

Rosefolly, I will watch the latest Emma with interest. I like to see the various interpretations of the characters and how key scenes, like the Box Hill trip, are handled.

I have made up Regency outfits for events and am eager to see the fashions!

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kathy_t

I thought the costumes in the movie were beautiful - so detailed, though I'm no judge of their accuracy.

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Rosefolly(9/Sunset 16)

The costumes for the latest Emma are pretty accurate for the late Regency/Empire period, around 1815-1820. They are more elaborate than the clothing worn in the earlier part of the era. The two costumes I made were set much earlier, around 1796-1797, much simpler. Both eras are beautiful. If I ever make another one, I think I'll make an 1815-1820-ish costume, just to explore something a little different.

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Annie Deighnaugh

The Ghost Map...about the scientists who tracked and ended the cholera epidemic in London in the 1850s.

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Rosefolly(9/Sunset 16)

I read The Ghost Map some years ago. It was very good. Also The Great Influenza about the 1918 flu. Both were excellent.

But I think I'll personally stay away from books like that just now. If I get bored with my lightweight escapist fiction, I think I'll re-read (yet again) Connie Willis's 2 volume novel about time travelers trapped in the London Blitz, Blackout/All Clear. In its far more extreme way, it echoes with our shelter-in-place shortage and uncertainty situation. And making cloth masks (which so far I am not very good at) reminds me of the war effort work women did at home during WWII. I think I'll make a few and pass them along to my daughter's nurse friends, make one for everyone in the family, and then give it a rest. My garden is begging for my attention.

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carolyn_ky

Rosefolly, if you are not very good at a sewing project, I'm surely not going to try!

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skibby (zone 4 Vermont)

Thank you all for the cozy mystery recommendations. I just loved Bodies in the Library. All have been added to the list for when can shop/borrow again. For the last ten years or so I've been shopping thrift stores and the like in order to establish a home Library. I have two full size bookcases with things I haven't read. This translates to roughly 200 books in various genres. I haven't got everything covered, including cozies, but that will come. I feel pretty confident that I won't find fun reading material lackingWe were also able to grocery shop so have plenty, including TP. DH made beef stew. His first attempt at cooking anything homemade. It was wonderful! I may put him in charge now.

I feel safe now as far as reading material, groceries and adult vice supplies go. Happy quarantine everyone.

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annpanagain

Skibby, "adult vice?" How intriguing!

I am not in lockdown yet but am staying home as much as possible. My cleaner (Bless her!) dropped by to work and offered to take me to the local mall on the way to her next call.She gave me a pair of plastic gloves and strict instructions to be careful.

I needed a repeat of a prescription and the experience of shopping these days was an eye-opener. Plastic shields and minimum handling everywhere. Hardly any customers and all keeping a safe distance where possible.

At the supermarkets, the self-checkout machines were shuttered so that there was only every second one available.

A notice asked customers to pack their own groceries and pay by swipe card rather than handle cash. I was pleased to see plenty of some items like sugar and boxes of tissues now available and the major supermarkets are hiring many of the people who have been let go from other companies.

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vee_new

Not a book but top-hats and bonnets in a new TV series Belgravia by Julian Fellowes following the going's on of the aristocracy and the up-and-coming money-making classes in the then 'new' area of fashionable London.

A pleasant escape from the doom-and-gloom of the news.



Belgravia

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Rosefolly(9/Sunset 16)

Oh, that does look like fun, Vee! I hope it is available soon.

Sanditon was such a disappointment, even for an Austen diehard like me. I never even finished watching it.

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althea_gw

The Internet Archive just opened The National Emergency Library, a collection of 1.4 million books now available online. I have borrowed books from Internet Archive before. It's a nice service. They also have films.

https://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/the-national-emergency-library-is-a-gift-to-readers-everywhere?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_social-type=owned&utm_brand=tny&mbid=social_twitter

I'm not participating in the disaster reading group because I'm still slogging through "Master of the Senate" by Robert Caro. It is part of the biography series he wrote about Lyndon Johnson. Caro is a great writer, but the subject matter, wow, what a horrible person Johnson was. Caro's thesis is examining how those whose drive for power acquired it and used it once they had achieved it. The series could be considered the plague that is still afflicting politicians.

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adoptedbyhounds

Thanks for posting, Althea. I'm still working my way through Spillover (it's over 500 pages) but this will be fun to check out.

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Rosefolly(9/Sunset 16)

Althea, what a wonderful resource! I just spent some time looking at all the vintage science fiction, some of which I have, some of which I remember reading long ago, and some of which is new to me.

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elvis

I sure am glad to have my Kindle right now. Thanks for this positive thread, Sable!

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althea_gw

Adoptedbyhounds & Rosefolly (love your nom de net), you're welcome.

Last night, instead of forcing myself to read more from Caro's book, I borrowed "The Plague" by Camus from the Nat'l Emergency Library. I have a hard copy here somewhere and read it ages ago, but can't find it. At least it is fiction and keeps with the theme of the thread.

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sableincal

My pleasure, Elvis! Not reading anything as elegant as my original suggestions, though. I decided to tackle a pile of books started and not finished. Right now I'm finishing a biography of Rita Hayworth, because I like the writer, biographer Barbara Leaming. Poor sad Rita, such a tragic life. In contrast, my DH is reading a biography of Hedy Lamarr. I wonder how many people who remember her know the details of her life. She was not merely a beautiful actress. She was actually an engineer-physicist, who had a room in her home designed as a lab where she worked on her inventions. She is credited with the invention of usable radar, and techies in-the-know say that she is responsible for today's blue-tooth technology. Am not sure of all the details, but her work is quite astonishing. Hedy was a European Jew who fled HItler. With her stunning face she ultimately landed in Hollywood. She established her home there and when she wasn't in front of the camera she was in her lab, working. She shared her inventions with the U.S.. government; some were used by our military after WW2. Quite a woman!


Busy Hedy - Six Husbands

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batyabeth

Thanks Althea, great resource, I'll check it out!!!

I know this was on the third page already, but I'm procrastinating about getting back to work. A great cozy series, and a wonderful tv adaptation, is The Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency. Both book and show were lovely. The series by Rita Mae Brown, both Mrs. Murphy and the Sister Jane series, are nice. The Connie Willis book about time travel mentioned above to the plague in Europe and oddly, about toilet paper, is called the Domesday Book. It was a good read. Modern science fiction/fantasy of the urban kind, go as fast as you can to the InCryptid series by Seanan McGuire. More urban fantasy? The Dresden Files - all of 'em!

Ooops gotta go back to work.................smooth sailing, my friends.

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