BOOKISH THURSDAYS #10: A POTPOURRI OF EVENTS

bookish thursdays

Welcome to Thursday, a day that once seemed lost, with nothing exciting happening anywhere.  But then that changed, and today I am celebrating some of the bookish events around the blogosphere, like Lexxie’s Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts; Kimberlyfaye’s TBR Thursday; and Christine’s Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts.

Today’s featured TBR book has been on my stacks since May 2015, a short book about a young woman named Hope whose life is in shambles:  A Thirty-Something Girl.

In the “foodie” section, Hope appears at a restaurant at the invitation of some friends, and here is what happens:

“We’re ready now,” she (Clara) says to him.

“Ready for what?”  I look each of them directly in the eye.  They all know I don’t like surprises, and this quite possibly could be the worst day for them to spring one on me.  “You aren’t acknowledging my,” I lean in closer and whisper, “you know what, are you?”

Before they have time to answer, I see, out of the corner of my eye, a group form near the side of the restaurant.  The leader of the pack is carrying an over-sized cupcake, and with one quick nod from him, his entourage begins to clap as they make their way over to our table.  Burning atop the sugary monstrosity are two numbers.  Two numbers I very much do not want to see.  They sing Happy Birthday, but not the way the song is supposed to be sung, but their own horrific rendition of it…I have two options:  faint or run away.  I choose the latter.”

Okay…so she’s THIRTY!  Big deal…LOL.  The cupcake sounds good!

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Why This TBR Thursday Pick?

As I mentioned before, I’ve had this on Pippa since May 2015.  I must have wanted to read it at some point…here’s the blurb for A Thirty-Something Girl:

 

 

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A Thirty-Something Girl follows the story of Hope. At the age of 30, she finds her life in utter shambles. Everything that could go wrong has – divorce, loss of a child, financial struggles. It is the love and unfettered support of her close friends who keep her from being lost in the quicksand of utter despair. As she slowly begins to wrap her head around who she is and what it means to be happy, she meets a man, Sam. Sam is also not a stranger to hardship and finds himself at his own crossroads. Together they find comfort and peace in one another; a soft, quiet place to fall, when the rest of the world is too hard and too noisy to inhabit.

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So…should I read this one, or send it to the cloud?

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Some Bookish/Not So Bookish Thoughts for Today:

 

  • I’ve read three very different books this week, so the pages seemed to fly by;
  • It has been verging on HOT all week, up to 90-something;
  • I was bored with my theme here, so as you might notice, I changed it up.  Check out the features!
  • Here’s a cute photo of my three step-great-grandchildren, left to right:  Maddix, Lilly and Bella.  Lilly and Bella are twins.

 

Maddix, Lilly, & Bella

  • It seems just like yesterday that their father, Spencer, was eight years old, the age he was when his mom married one of my sons;
  • Season II of Better Call Saul just ended…sigh.  It will be a while now for the next season;
  • I am really longing for the ocean…I could drive two-and-a-half hours to the Central Coast…or, eleven hours or so to the Northern Coast, which I haven’t yet visited since my youngest son and his wife moved there.  (Below), Kerrie, right, my DIL, and her youngest daughter Jessica, at the beach near Crescent City;

 

Kerrie & Jessica on the beach

  • I think it will be fun to go farther north…and take my granddaughter Fiona, since it’s her dad’s home.  She has her driver’s license now, so we could take turns driving;

 

 

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  • I’ll have to think about it.  Those are my thoughts for today.  What are yours?

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BOOKISH THURSDAYS #9: A POTPOURRI OF EVENTS

bookish  thursdays

Welcome to Thursday, a day that once seemed lost, with nothing exciting happening anywhere.  But then that changed, and today I am celebrating some of the bookish events around the blogosphere, like Lexxie’s Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts; Kimberlyfaye’s TBR Thursday; and Christine’s Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts.

My featured book today has been on my TBR since October 2014.  How time flies! 

Lila, by Marilynne Robinson, is a new American classic from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Gilead and Housekeeping.   I’ve read these other books…and enjoyed them.  But this book has been languishing on Pippa.  Why?

 

 

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My food excerpt today comes from the opening chapter of the book, right after a strange woman named Doll has “rescued” Lila from the abusive, neglectful home where she lived.  They had arrived at the home of an old woman Doll knew:

“The old woman went into the house and brought out a scrap of corn bread.  She said, ‘I was about to do the milking.  You might as well go inside, get her in out of the cold.’

“Doll stood with her by the stove, where there was just the little warmth of the banked embers.  She whispered, ‘You hush.  I got something for you here.  You got to eat it.’  But the child couldn’t rouse herself, couldn’t keep her head from lolling back.  So Doll knelt with her on the floor to free her hands, and pinched off little pills of corn bread and put them in the child’s mouth, one after another. ‘You got to swallow.’

“The old woman came back with a pail of milk.  ‘Warm from the cow,’ she said. ‘Best thing for a child.’  That strong, grassy smell, raw milk in a tin cup.  Doll gave it to her in sips, holding her head in the crook of her arm.”

***

Whew!  Probably not a fun excerpt, but I was drawn in…now wanting to know more about the character!

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For TBR Thursday:

Marilynne Robinson, one of the greatest novelists of our time, returns to the town of Gilead in an unforgettable story of a girlhood lived on the fringes of society in fear, awe, and wonder.
Lila, homeless and alone after years of roaming the countryside, steps inside a small-town Iowa church-the only available shelter from the rain-and ignites a romance and a debate that will reshape her life. She becomes the wife of a minister, John Ames, and begins a new existence while trying to make sense of the life that preceded her newfound security.
Neglected as a toddler, Lila was rescued by Doll, a canny young drifter, and brought up by her in a hardscrabble childhood. Together they crafted a life on the run, living hand to mouth with nothing but their sisterly bond and a ragged blade to protect them. Despite bouts of petty violence and moments of desperation, their shared life was laced with moments of joy and love. When Lila arrives in Gilead, she struggles to reconcile the life of her makeshift family and their days of hardship with the gentle Christian worldview of her husband which paradoxically judges those she loves.

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Should I keep reading this one?  What do you think?

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Now for some Bookish/Not So Bookish Thoughts:

  • I really love mornings…once I get up.  But I HATE the process of doing so.  Dragging myself out of bed, stumbling to the bathroom, going through what one of my friends calls “morning ablutions.”  It was so much worse when I had to go to work in the morning.  Why am I such a baby?  LOL.
  • Bedtime is better.  All comfy in my bed, with the TV on mute, reading whatever book I’m immersed in at the moment, and sometimes watching a movie from my DVR.  One of my current reads is A Fatal Grace, Book 2 of the series, by Louise Penny, a book that’s been on my TBR since January 2015.
  • I don’t know how I feel about how quickly the weeks seem to fly by.  It’s not that I don’t enjoy weekends, because I do…but there are so many more things I want to accomplish during the week!
  • I saw this on Facebook yesterday, and it made me smile:

 

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  • Do you ever friend people on FB that you knew many years ago and haven’t seen since?
  • Today is going to be another day of errands…but maybe I can combine those with a treat or two, like lunch at one of the neighborhood restaurants….perhaps this one.  I love living around the corner from several fun spots (for me).

 

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  • So that’s it for today!  Have some fun and get through your days as smoothly as possible.  Here’s a toast!

 

Coffee, Mimosa, & reading - 2

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BOOKISH THURSDAYS #8: A POTPOURRI OF EVENTS

bookish thursdays

Welcome to Thursday, a day that once seemed lost, with nothing exciting happening anywhere.  But then that changed, and today I am celebrating some of the bookish events around the blogosphere, like Lexxie’s Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts; Kimberlyfaye’s TBR Thursday; and Christine’s Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts.

My featured book today has been on my TBR since July 2014.  Buried in a Bog, by Sheila Connolly,  takes the reader to Ireland, where our MC, Maura Donovan, fulfills her grandmother’s last wish for her to visit the village Leap, to find some kind of treasure.

 

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Our “foodie” section – Thirsty Thursday/Hungry Hearts:

“…Ellen set a plate heaped with food in front of Maura.

” ‘Oh, my.  What’s this?’ She poked a round slice of something the color of tar.

” ‘Blood sausage—Clonakilty’s famous for it.  You don’t need to eat it if you don’t want to.’

” ‘It really is made from blood?’

” ‘That it is, among other things.  Give it a try.’

Nothing ventured, nothing gained, as Gran had often said.  Ellen watched, Maura quartered the piece, speared a quarter with her fork, and stuck it in her mouth.  She chewed thoughtfully.  Not bad, as long as you avoided thinking about what it was made from.  There were a lot of chopped oats in the mix somewhere, and a touch of seasoning.  Definitely not American sausage….”

(I lost my appetite!)

***

For TBR Thursday:  I can’t imagine why I haven’t read this one yet!  Soon…

Honoring the wish of her late grandmother, Maura Donovan visits the small Irish village where her Gran was born—though she never expected to get bogged down in a murder mystery. Nor had she planned to take a job in one of the local pubs, but she finds herself excited to get to know the people who knew her Gran.

In the pub, she’s swamped with drink orders as everyone in town gathers to talk about the recent discovery of a nearly one-hundred-year-old body in a nearby bog. When Maura realizes she may know something about the dead man—and that the body’s connected to another, more recent, death—she fears she’s about to become mired in a homicide investigation. After she discovers the death is connected to another from almost a century earlier, Maura has a sinking feeling she may really be getting in over her head…

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Here are some Bookish/Not So Bookish Thoughts:

  • Yesterday, I went to Cheesecake Factory with a friend…soup, and a slice of cheesecake…delicious!  But I was too full to eat dinner later!
  • How can it be Thursday already?  It was just Monday a minute ago…or so it seems;
  • Yesterday I found some old photos in a box and scanned them.  Here’s one of me and my daughter when she was a baby…thirty-some years ago!  Oh, that hair of mine!  Yikes….
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  • Currently, I’m reading a book called Domestic Secrets, by Rosalind Noonan, a book about friendship, secrets, and shattering revelations…good, right?
  • I need to do a little housework…ugh!  Cleaning the microwave by steaming a bowl of water and vinegar…I’ve heard it makes the task easier;
  • Now I’m off to visit some blogs….enjoy the day!

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What is your Thursday like?  Join in and share some thoughts….

 

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BOOKISH THURSDAYS #7: A POTPOURRI OF EVENTS

bookish thursdays

Welcome to Thursday, a day that once seemed lost, with nothing exciting happening anywhere.  But then that changed, and today I am celebrating some of the bookish events around the blogosphere, like Lexxie’s Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts; Kimberlyfaye’s TBR Thursday; and Christine’s Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts.

Our feature today is one on my TBR from way back…February 2014!  I purchased A Desirable Residence, by Madeleine Wickham, from a board and brick bookstore, so it wasn’t even hiding.  It was right there on my stack!  It is a story of “love and real estate.”

Liz and Jonathan Chambers were stuck with two mortgages, mounting debts and a miserable adolescent daughter. Then Marcus Witherstone came into their lives – and it seemed he would solve all their problems. He knew the perfect tenants from London who would rent their old house: a glamorous PR girl, Ginny, and her almost-famous husband, Piers.

 

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In our food and drinks section, Liz has brought the exciting news of her plan for renting out the house, and offers Jonathan some tea.  He isn’t as thrilled about the plan as she is:

‘Here’s your tea,’ said Liz.  She looked at his face and frowned.  ‘Oh, come on.  Don’t be such a misery.’  Jonathan roused himself, and gave her a small smile.  Liz took a huge bite of doughnut and looked at him balefully.  ‘I’ve had a really hard day,’ she added.

‘I know you have,’ said Jonathan, automatically adopting a soothing voice. ‘Well, why don’t you go and sit down, and I’ll bring you a piece of toast.’

‘OK,’ said Liz grudgingly, taking another bite of her doughnut.  ‘Where’s Alice?'(the adolescent daughter), she added, in a muffled voice.

‘She went out earlier on,’ said Jonathan.  He opened a drawer and took out the bread knife.  ‘She didn’t say where she was going.’

(I’m not sold on this one yet…they don’t even anything interesting to eat!  I had to search and search to find this bit.)

***

As for its TBR standing:  I have enjoyed some books by this author, and I must have really wanted to read it at the time I bought it…so why is it still waiting?  What do you think?  Here’s a bit more from the blurb:

…But soon Liz is lost in blissful dreams of Marcus, Jonathan is left to run their tutorial college, and neither of them has time to notice that their teenage daughter is developing a passion for the tenants, Piers and Ginny. Everyone is entangled with everyone else, in the most awkward possible way. And as events close in, they all begin to realize that some deceptions are just a bit too close to home.

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Now for my Bookish and Not So Bookish Thoughts:

  • Today I have to run some end-of-the month errands…post-payday errands.  Yikes, I hate that!  Most bills can be paid online or even mailed, but there are a couple that require dropping them off.  Annoying…
  • But later, I get to see my daughter for my “styling” and a chat.  She is lots of fun.  She has this little bear at her station that I gave her when she graduated:  “I’m a beautician, not a magician.”  Hint, hint.

 

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  • How did this week fly by so fast?  I’m only on my second book, Virgin River, and yes, it has 430 pages, but I’m only half finished.  Usually I’m on the third book by now.  But I’m savoring the book, so that’s good, right?
  • I’m feeling much better this week…back on the old meds, but still a little furious with the doctor who changed them to a “newer” prescription, for no reason that makes sense to me…but I’ll try to let it go;
  • It’s beautiful out this week…although the weather people are still talking about more rain;
  • I finished Broadchurch, the Netflix show I was bingeing on, and last night, resumed watching Lie to Me.  A new show, called The Ranch, is starting tomorrow.  Yes, I do get addicted….
  • I love Thursday TV, with the Shonda Rhimes shows…the new one, The Catch, looks promising, but I’m not quite addicted to it.
  • Here’s a photo I took of one of my quirky dolls, with the mug my daughter got me, because she knows me so well:

 

Married to Books with Friend

 

So that’s it for my thoughts?  What are you doing/reading/thinking about today?

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BOOKISH THURSDAYS # 6: A POTPOURRI OF EVENTS

bookish thursdays

Welcome to Thursday, a day that once seemed lost, with nothing exciting happening anywhere.  But then that changed, and today I am celebrating some of the bookish events around the blogosphere, like Lexxie’s Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts; Kimberlyfaye’s TBR Thursday; and Christine’s Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts.

My TBR book featured today is the fifth in the Lizzy Gardner Series:  Almost Dead, by T. R. Ragan.  A P. I. with something to avenge, after her fiance Jared was shot (in the last book), Lizzy is dealing with her comatose love, while trying to solve some murders.  I like this series set in my old stomping grounds of Sacramento, CA.

 

 

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In this “foodie” description, Lizzy was hanging out at the office with her friend and colleague, Hayley, who is taking care of her during her time of need.  Hayley has whisked her off somewhere while she was half out of it, drunk, and she wakes up to strange surroundings:

This was no hotel—it was a house.  A ridiculously large house.  Halfway down a long stretch of carpeted stairs, she got a whiff of bacon.  Her stomach rumbled in a bad way.

Despite the never-ending square footage, the kitchen was easy enough to find.  Kitally stood in front of the stove, flipping pancakes.

“You’re just in time.  Bacon and pancakes.  If you prefer eggs, I can make them to order.”

“Just coffee.  I just need coffee.”

“Cream and sugar?”

“No, thanks.  Black.”

***

I could use some bacon and pancakes right now!  What do you think?  Our MC is a little hung over, wanting only coffee, apparently.  Now…why has this one been on my stacks for such a long time?  I purchased it in April 2015, and I have another in the series to read as well.  But you know how it is…the best of plans and all.

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On to some Bookish/Not So Bookish Thoughts:

  • I woke up very early this morning; 4:30 a.m….upset stomach, thanks to the new meds again.  Time to toss them out?
  • All over the blogosphere, some are recording “a day in the life” with Trish, at Love, Laughter, & a Touch of Insanity.  I didn’t record a day, but I think I might try it…tomorrow?
  • I’m shivering here; I even had to turn on the heater for the first time in weeks; I think it’s going to rain, too;
  •  Maybe I’ll take a nap…

 

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  • Then I might keep reading one of the two current books on my stacks, Somewhere Out There, which has totally captivated me;

 

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  • Tonight is the Shonda Rhimes line-up for Thursday (Grey’s Anatomy, and a new show called The Catch); I don’t watch Scandal;
  • Tomorrow I want to see a movie, and I’m considering Hello, My Name is Doris, with Sally Field;

 

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  • All week long, I’ve been participating in Bloggiesta, mostly at my Curl up and Read site.
  • Now I’m going to check out some of the bloggers participating in this Thursday event, and I’ll have some coffee, please!  Not the mimosa today, though.

 

Coffee, Mimosa, & reading - 2

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BOOKISH THURSDAY #5: A POTPOURRI OF EVENTS

bookish  thursdays

Welcome to Thursday, a day that once seemed lost, with nothing exciting happening anywhere.  But then that changed, and today I am celebrating some of the bookish events around the blogosphere, like Lexxie’s Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts; Kimberlyfaye’s TBR Thursday; and Christine’s Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts.

My featured book today is one that’s been on my TBR since February 2015, and it’s from an author I enjoy:  Jane Smiley.  Duplicate Keys is a story about a group of friends living in Manhattan.  At the center of this circle is a rock band struggling to navigate New York’s erratic music scene, and an apartment/practice space with approximately fifty key-holders. One sunny day, Alice enters the apartment and finds two of the band members shot dead. As the double-murder sends waves of shock through their lives, this group of friends begins to unravel, and dangerous secrets are revealed one by one.

 

 

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Here’s a “foodie” excerpt.  Some of the group gather to eat dinner and commiserate about their lost friends:

“The key turned in the lock and the door flew open.  It was Ray with a huge bag of food.  In a moment Rya appeared, shooting straight for it, then moaning over the mo-shu pork, the oysters with straw mushrooms, the gong-bao chicken with charred red peppers and cashews, the sizzling rice soup, the shrimp toast.  It must have cost Ray twenty-five or thirty dollars.  And there were shao-mai dumplings at the bottom.  Rya reached into the bag, her red fingernails promising to impale rather than to grasp one of the delicious hors d’oeuvres.  Alice stood up.  She was hungry, too.”

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Why have I not read this one sooner?  Like the fate of many of my e-books that “hide” out on Pippa, I bought it because I really wanted to read it…but I got distracted by other books, especially review books.

This year, I am working hard on clearing out my Kindle.

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Over at Bookishly Boisterous, Christine shares random thoughts in her Thursday posts:

Mine today:

  • Just when I thought I had hurdled most of the side effects for my new medication, another cropped up last night:  insomnia.  Seriously, I don’t think I slept a wink, and here I am, wide awake at 5:00 a.m.;
  • I read and reviewed three books so far this week; I think there will be at least one more;
  • Over at my An Interior Journey blog, I wrote a post about getting ready for Bloggiesta, which is beginning on March 21.  I always love and enjoy this event.  My Curl up and Read site is where I’ll focus most of my energy;

 

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  • I’m clearing out my DVR of movies I’ve recorded over the past few weeks.  One was an HBO special on Roberta Flack; another was a movie with Emma Thompson called Wit, in which she portrays a woman dying of cancer.  Cheerful, right?  She narrated what was happening with a dry wit;
  • Here are Bella and Lilly (below), celebrating their second birthday.  They are my step-great-granddaughters…peeking in on them is older brother Maddix;

 

Bella & Twin - Two

What are your thoughts on a Thursday?  What book did you grab off of your TBR Mountain?

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