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What are you reading? March 2023 Edition

last year
last modified: last year

What are you reading?

As always, it helps to bold the titles, rate the books 1-5 stars, and let us know if you think it would be good for a book group.

Link to February 2023

Comments (121)

  • last year

    I finished The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell and really enjoyed it. 4 stars.

  • last year

    Elmer, that does sound like a book very much worth reading. I generally prefer nonfiction to fiction. Barncatz, I’m in a book group, and I don’t always enjoy the selections, although I always enjoy our meetings. I do always try to finish the book, although I confess I skim it when it’s just not my cup of tea…

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  • last year

    I just started Pineapple Street by Jenny Jackson. So far, good.

  • last year

    Thank you for the insights into Book Club books. They were very helpful. I skimmed finished and gratefully returned.

  • last year

    I'll award 2.5 Stars to Remarkably Bright Creatures, a sweet story that is Van Pelt's first novel. Nice, clear writing.

  • last year

    @chisue, I am an outlier but I was really disappointed by Daisy Jones & the Six. I read it soon after it was released in 2019 so before all the hype for it ... and before all the love for Taylor Jenkins Reid. I didn't capture my thoughts in my review (something I do sporadically) but I remember thinking it was so very tame for what I remember/experienced in the 1970s/80s. It was clear she didn't live through the time and I just didn't find it believable. I might have been able to swallow the drama a little better if it was an accurate representation of the sex/drugs/rock scene of the time. I did give it 3 stars but everytime I pop onto good reads, I think I should drop my rating. I am unlikely to read anything else by TJR.

    Again-- I am an outlier. The general public doesn't agree with me lol.


    How's the series?

  • last year

    Thank you to the people who recommended Foster. It was a short, sweet read that I enjoyed very much.

  • last year

    Based on the recommendations on this thread, I also read Foster, and thought it was meme- moving and beautifully written.

  • last year
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    I finished Horse and while I can recognize that it was a good and well written book, I don't think it touched me the way it seemed to touch so many other people . I definitely enjoyed the history ( and yes, bookwoman, I did a little bit of research and so much about the time and sport and Darly-Lexington and skeletons etc was true!). I thought the current day angle was a bit more fluff at least that's how it hit me.

    I would say it's a 4 star book, but I might give it 3.5 stars.

    I just started Maureen (as in Maureen Fry) which I was able to get from Broward County on ebook. :)

  • last year

    I'm about halfway through Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin. The story is about the young creators of some video games, and follows their friendship over the decades. I am not a gamer (I played Myst back in the day, and that's it), but so far I'm really enjoying the book, despite some of the references going over my head. The characters are well fleshed-out and the prose flows.

  • last year

    Bookwoman, i also enjoyed Tomorrow. It helped to read it on my Kindle app so i could look up some of the techie references.

    I also loved that the author used the word palimpsest twice.

  • last year

    I finally found something of interest. It's cute & clean. A Novel Proposal by Denise Hunter.

  • last year

    Today's Chicago Tribune has an AP story about an Irish movie, "The Quiet Girl", made from Claire Keegan's Foster. I hadn't known her story was also published in The New Yorker in 2010. The movie is now playing in North American theaters. Where have I been, not to know it was nominated for best international feature film, losing to "All Quiet on the Western Front"? The story says this is an all-Irish-language film. (In Gaelic? Subtitled?)

  • last year

    I'm recommending How to Stop Time by Matt Haig, the author of The Midnight Library. It's a mix of The 15 Lives of Harry August, The Age of Adeline, and The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue. The main protagonist was born in the late 1500's in France and has to learn to survive through the centuries in a hostile world after his aging significantly slows in his teens.

  • last year

    Wow lots of good suggestions lately.

    I just devoured Maureen by Rachel Joyce. It is a very short book and it was just beautiful. It is the 3rd piece of the Harold Fry and Queenie saga. I suppose it does require some going along for the ride, but it's so worth it. It has so many levels and tidbits that just ring true. It did seem to fill in and complete the stories. I give it 5 stars.

    (I also read that The Unlikely Prilgrimage of Harold Fry has been made into a movie. I am not a movie person but I will seek it out at some point.)


    Funky-- I enjoyed reading Daisy but I felt that it was kind of empty. I find a lot of the very popular current books are like that; good reads, but no there there.


    I just got notice that Your Table is Ready: Tales of a New York City Maitre D is available at the library ebook for me so I will give that a try next. I have so many on hold and I bet they are all going to come soon.

    ( I do edit my holds quite a bit. love that feature).

  • last year

    funkyart -- Yes, I wondered if this was a rare instance where the movie (series) was actually much better than the book! It's all about the MUSIC after all. We have two episodes to go and are enjoying it. I think it would be a big hit with anyone nostalgic for their youth. (We're too old for that to apply, but it's still fun.)

  • last year

    I wondered if this was a rare instance where the movie (series) was actually much better than the book!

    I have a theory that good but not great books make first-rate series and vice versa. So many British series fit this idea: To Serve Them All My Days, Sorrell and Son, Paradise Postponed, The Jewel in the Crown, etc. as well as American ones like The Leftovers. And the classic movie that fits my theory is The Godfather.

  • last year

    I'm only 1/3 into Nevil Shute's Pied Piper and am already loving it. It's a WWII drama, but what makes it so much more powerful than many of the historical fiction books I've read about the era is that it was written in 1942 so before the war even ended. Rather than historical, it was truly contemporary to the events. So far every book of his I've read, I've enjoyed. Thank you to whoever got me started on them! I know it was someone here.

  • last year

    I adored Pied Piper. I also loved A Gentleman in Moscow. Both bolster trust in the existance of honorable men.

  • last year
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    Annie, maybe it was me. I’m a huge fan of Trustee and Pied Piper. Shute’s writing is so straightforward and honest.

  • last year

    Chisue, I agree with you 100%.

  • last year

    Interesting...I've been watching a lot of TCM because of all the oscar-winning movies they're showing and one of the ads mentioned this book: But Have You Read the Book?: 52 Literary Gems That Inspired Our Favorite Films by Kristen Lopez.


    One of the movies that stunned me ... not from a book but a short story ... was Brokeback Mountain. I read the story after I saw the movie and thought how much imagination and creativity went into making the movie as the story to me was a yawner.

  • last year

    I just read A Town Called Solace by Mary Lawson. It's a bit older, but was our book club's selection this month. We try to select books available for everyone at the library to lessen our need to purchase books we may not wish to own. And to utilize our wonderful library for free.

    I enjoyed it very much. The writing was wonderful, the story interesting. A good read all around.

    It was quite striking to me, however, the similarity of the device used by this author and the author of Fellowship Point, which I recently finished. Both books had a storyline about a childless woman becoming very attached to a child not her own and the emotional toll that took on her. One author had the backstory told via letters written to a dead sister; the other was reminiscing to her dead husband. The similarities in storytelling via that method was quite a coincidence.

  • last year

    I'm almost at the end of Pied Piper and I loved it. I'm really enjoying the books I've read so far by Nevil Shute. Thank you to all who recommended him.


  • last year

    I just finished Pied Piper and 5 stars. Loved it! So far all of his books have ranked good to excellent for me. I hope to keep reading him....he's got a long list of books he's authored, but I think finding them is going to be the issue.

  • last year
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    Spare ( Prince Harry.)

  • last year

    Oliver Twist, which I had never read. It is very primitive Dickens, but I am appreciating the humor, and I can see where his greatness began.

  • last year

    Assigned reading - reread of Hop On Pop by Dr. Suess with and Tango Makes Three up next.

  • last year
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    I just finished Fairy Tale by Stephen King. 4 stars. It's a long 600 pages.

    It's only the second Stephen King book I've read, the other being 11/22/63 (love! need to reread). I don't read horror stories or anything else that's likely to scare me at night. I do like Stephen King the person very much, follow him on Twitter. He's a good guy.

    The story has two parts, here in our world, and the fairy tale part. I absolutely loved the first part in this world, told in the first person about a then-17-year-old boy. Such wonderful storytelling. The fairy tale part is long and didn't hold my interest as much.

    But he brings it all together. And there's a dog.

    ETA: For those who read it, when you're done read the Acknowledgments. There's one at the end that's very poignant.

  • last year

    Thanks Bunny, I have not seen it!

  • last year

    I am reading Papyrus: The Invention of Books in the Ancient World by Irene Vallejo. It is not a quick read, but I am really enjoying it.

  • last year
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    I finished Your Table is Ready: Tales of a New York City Maitre D. It was a juicy memoir, an easy read, but not so memorable. I would give it 2.5 stars. It did cover a lot of NYC in the 70's through the 2000's so there were lots of interesting bits.

    I just started The Measure and am really enjoying it. It's for book club and I am sure it will be a good discussion.

    I too strongly prefer kindle and that is how I read The Trustee from the Toolroom. I just cannot read the faded fonts on yellowed pages.

  • last year

    Our small town library has a bingo game -- paper with 25 squares and each square describing a type of book. Examples "a book with a plant or a flower in the title", "a book with mythical creatures", "a book that was banned in 2022", etc. Each bingo wins a chance for a grand prize drawing at the end of the game. The book must be read after the game begins and before it ends. One square is "a book about Ireland" and the book I had just checked out is "A Man with one of Those Faces" by Caimh McDonnell. I just started it and it's quite good and happened to be set in Ireland! Since I just finished "On the Beach" I was able to use it for "a book that became a movie". It was made in 1959, only 2 years after the book came out.


    Any suggestions for "a fairytale retelling"?

  • last year

    I’m listening to The Midnight Library by Matt Haig , narrated by Carey Mulligan.

  • last year

    Any suggestions for "a fairytale retelling"?

    Donald Barthelme's Snow White. Or for a less avant-garde version, Helen Oyeyemi's Boy, Snow, Bird. Angela Carter's The Bloody Chamber, a series of stories, is wickedly funny.

  • last year

    I know its April and there will soon be a new thread but just had to say I was reading The Summer Place by Jennifer Weiner. It was just awful. I thought I needed a beach read as an escape. This was just dreadful. Skimmed through to the end. Impossible to keep all the characters straight and who was sleeping with whom and who were the biological parents of which one.

    Bleah.

  • last year
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    If only someone had employed a red pencil! Makai's most recent novel, I Have Some Questions For You, has the longest set-up I've ever read. Enough with the teen angst memories of a private school. We got it the first fifty pages. The final quarter of the book rescued it, but too late. Do authors get too famous to be edited? Do readers demand 300+ pages?

    I now have The Hours, Michael Cunningham, and The White Lady, Jacquiline Winspear's departure (?) from her Masie Dobbs series. Looks like another intrepid 'hen' set to shake up the Old Boys Club in post-WWII London.

    Something serious and something not.

  • last year

    @chisue I recently read the Makkai novel and felt the same way, except I did not feel the final quarter of the book rescued it. At some point I ended up skim reading just to find out what happened. The constant rehash of the backstory/memories, way too many characters and (none with strong character development) and the ridiculously long, drawn out plot - blah. I really enjoyed The Great Believers but should have given this one a hard pass.

  • last year

    @Annie Deighnaugh please may we get an April thread?

  • last year

    Annie asked that anyone can please start a thread when she has mot.

  • last year

    Fine. ;-)

  • last year

    I’m on my phone and cannot figure out how to link the previous momth or I would do it!

  • last year

    It's done now, Oly. Wouldn't you just do it by copying the URL for the previous month and then creating a link in the new post? Same way as on a computer?

  • last year
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    Finished The Midnight Library, it ended exactly as I predicted and with a lot of unnecessary moralizing at the end. Pineapple Street was a triumph of literature over reality— novel vs life— and a spit in Voltaire’s eye.

  • last year
  • last year

    Yes, please, if I haven't remembered to create the next month's thread, please feel free to do it. This is not my thread but ours.

  • last year
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    Bunny I cant figure out how to post the link with a descrption of it. I just get the raw link. I don’t see how to label it March inside the April thread. I seldom use my phone for posting so am always at a loss. This is what I get https://www.gardenweb.com/discussions/6361815/what-are-you-reading-april-2023-edition#n=1

  • last year
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    Olychick, I've done it...don't worry about it.

    And it isn't the worst thing in the world if the month starts a day late...it's not like tax day and the IRS!

  • last year

    I knew your started it, thanks, I just can't figure out how to make the proper kind of link from my phone so was hoping someone would see my dilemma (and excuse for not starting it myself) and explain how to do a proper link. I use my laptop 99% of the time, so it's not a big deal, though.

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