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Audrey2

Summer Reading

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Meh
Audrey2

What are you reading this summer?

 

Some of my recent favorites are:

The Secret Diary of Hendrik Groen by Hendrik Groen

Hendrik is in his eighties and lives in a retirement home. Some of his entries are funny, while others are sad. 

The Girls in the Picture by Melanie Benjamin

Tells the story of early Hollywood screen writer, Frances Marion and Mary Pickford. The book was fiction, but I found it fascinating.

Arabella of Mars by David Levine

Arabella was raised in the Mars Colony until she was sixteen, when her Mother decided she needed to return to England (and Earth) to become a lady. Left poor when her father dies, she poses as a boy to work on an air ship to Mars. This was very readable Science Fiction.

I'll add others...

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CTRLZero

I just finished Ken Lozito's enjoyable First Colony series (4 books).  These novels are about humans in stasis heading through space to colonize a new planet due to problems on earth.  Things take an unexpected turn, and they need to figure out what happened on earth and the upcoming consequences.  It looks like the series will continue, so while I am waiting for another installment to arrive, I am reading his Ascension series. 

The Ascension series is also enjoyable, but a little too bare bones.  In other words, a fairly decent plot (first contact, wormhole suckage, alien battles), but the character development is just not there and the story unfolds too quickly.  Plus, even though these are mostly older, veteran space-goers, there are a couple shipboard romances going on that would make the YA crowd groan.  I'll keep reading, since it's a quick read, and I'm interested in where the author is taking us.

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Happy
WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo?

I'm starting out by reading my way through the stack of books I got at the library sale. (I posted this picture in the JinJer thread.)

Spoiler

15292218992452032518454.thumb.jpg.262be47b7dbe444bc15dedde5da8858f.jpg

I already finished rereading an Ellis Peters mystery that isn't in the picture, and now I'm rereading Gaudy Night. I guess next I'll reread Trio for Blunt Instruments (it's 3 Nero Wolfe short stories) and then everything else is new to me. The comedy books should be a nice, light tone for summer reading. I'll probably go to the library and check out the Steven Saylor book that comes before Empire and the 3 or 4 books by Maryjanice Davidson that come before Undead and Unforgiven. A friend recommended the Maryjanice Davidson books as being silly, funny vampire books; maybe kind of like Stephanie Plum books, but with vampires?

I also stopped reading the Bright Empires series by Stephen R. Lawhead in my nook on book 3 (or 4?) of 5. I want to get back to that sometime, but the style of the books makes it kind of hard to follow. He keeps switching locations and characters, and he even adds new important characters in book 3. It takes more work to keep track of what's going on than I want to bother with some days. Plus, FJ reading is always bumping it out of my mind. :my_biggrin:

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CTRLZero

I finished the Ken Lozito "Ascension" series.  It turned out to be not too bad, but he really needs an editor for the lame shipboard romance scenes.

In the summer, I tend to read lighter fiction, so I just finished "The Essex Serpent" by Sarah Perry.  This was very well written, and I enjoyed the historical setting of the plot, the character development, the topics [lightly] touched upon, etc. 

Now I'll probably pop back into sci fi.  :happy-sunny:

On 6/17/2018 at 11:51 PM, WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo? said:

A friend recommended the Maryjanice Davidson books as being silly, funny vampire books; maybe kind of like Stephanie Plum books, but with vampires?

I haven't heard of these books.  Let me know what you think when/if you've had a chance to read them.

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Waffle Time
formergothardite
Posted (edited)

I just finished reading The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet and The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August.

I'm sort of meh about the first one. I thought it got boring in some parts. The second one I adored. I'm going to buy it because it is one of those books I'll read again. 

The Long Way is literally just the story of a long trip to a small angry planet. There are other things going on, but it is mostly about them traveling to this planet. 

The First Fifteen is the story of a person who, when he dies, goes back to his birth.  Except each time he is reborn he has all the knowledge of his previous lives. So he ends up knowing exactly how life will turn out and having to relive childhood with an adult mind. There is a whole group of people like him that he eventually discovers. 

Edited by formergothardite

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CTRLZero
6 hours ago, formergothardite said:

I just finished reading The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet and The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August.

I have considered reading both of these books, so thanks for the overview.

The way you describe The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August reminds me of one of my favorite books, "Replay" by Ken Grimwood.  I read Replay every so often.  I won't spoil it for you, but you might like it if you enjoy Groundhog's Day sorts of storylines.  It's a quick read, and very interesting.

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Happy
WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo?

I finshed Bridget Jones's Diary and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason. They were both funny in a silly way. I mentioned them to my friend today, and she believes the movies are funnier. I'm not sure if I've watched the movies all the way through or just skimmed them. Anyway, $1 more of library sale books read.

I've barely started Cold Comfort Farm, but so far it's good. I also reserved the first Maryjanice Davidson book and the prequel to the Steven Saylor book at the library. The next time we go, I can just pick them up. That seems to work easiest on library trips with my kids along. 

The books with Groundhog's Day type plots sound interesting. Thank you, @formergothardite and @CTRLZero:)

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Waffle Time
formergothardite
On 6/30/2018 at 6:15 PM, CTRLZero said:

Replay" by Ken Grimwood.  I read Replay every so often.  I won't spoil it for you, but you might like it if you enjoy Groundhog's Day sorts of storylines.  It's a quick read, and very interesting.

Thank you! I like those type of books. My library has it as an ebook so I'm going to check it out now. 

 

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CTRLZero

I  finished reading The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August and thoroughly enjoyed it, @formergothardite.  It had some common elements to the book I recommended (Replay), but had a much more substantial plot.  Thanks for the recommendation!

Just before reading The First Fifteen Lives, I read "Infinite" by Jeremy Robinson.  That was a wild sci-fi ride!  This was another book that starts out with humans in stasis, heading to a new planet, when things go wrong.  (I seem to be stuck in a stasis rut, ha ha!)  This novel was well written, had lots of great plot twists, and gives the reader something to ponder on the nature of reality.  Vague - but I don't like to spoil things.  Another quick summer read, if anyone enjoys space exploration/virtual reality sci-fi.

@WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo? - I pulled my copy of Cold Comfort Farm down from the shelf.  Just flipping through the pages and reading random passages makes me laugh.  I read about Amos talking of preaching all over the country in "one o' they Ford vans."  Reminds me of certain traveling fundies we know!  Stella Gibbons created the most marvelous characters.  Hope you are enjoying it.

 

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Happy
WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo?
14 minutes ago, CTRLZero said:

Hope you are enjoying it.

Thank you! I just finished it today. I did really enjoy it! The movie followed the plot closely enough that I didn't have any big surprises, but it was still very funny. :my_biggrin:

There were 2 or 3 little odd spots, where it seemed she was trying to indicate that it was set in the late 1940s, or maybe the early 50s. (Hard to do when it was published in 1930 something.) For example, one minor character was haunted by being the only one of his friends to survive a terrible war in Nicaragua in '46. (IIRC. It was somewhere in Central America.) I'm glad she didn't put in more things to indicate the later time, because the ones I noticed didn't fit well.

Next comes a book that wasn't in my library sale haul. My husband bought us a new Kathy Reichs book, Two Nights. He didn't realize that it isn't a Temperance Brennan novel until I pointed it out. As far as I remember, she has only solo written books with Tempe Brennan, and has co-written books with her son, featuring Temperance Brennan's great niece, Tori. It should be interesting to see how she does with this new protagonist, Sunday Night. (Kind of a silly name. Wonder where she'll go with it.)

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louisa05

I just finished Concussion which is the story of Dr. Bennet Omalu who basically discovered and named CTE in football players. It was interesting but the writing style was extremely flowery and odd considering the subject matter. Now I'm reading League of Denial: The NFL, Concussions and the Battle for Truth because I felt like the first book left out a lot. Both books will make you question watching football at all if you are a fan and make you even less likely to ever be if you are not. 

A couple of fiction books I've read lately that were good were Nice Try, Jane Sinner a YA about a girl who ends up on a local reality show after leaving HS following a suicide attempt. She struggles with her family's probably evangelical faith among other things, but the book is still quite humorous. Author is Lianne Oelke. Before the football reads, I finished The Life Lucy Knew by Karma Brown about a woman who has memory issues after a head injury (basically a concussion...hmm...just realized that's a theme for three books in a row). It was a pretty good read but the main character was a little frustrating--she made a lot of stupid choices. 

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Happy
WhatWouldJohnCrichtonDo?

I finished Two Nights and Undead and UnwedTwo Nights was good and the author managed to surprise me a few times with plot twists, and the characters seemed believable. It was fun to read a Kathy Reich's book that wasn't based on forensic Anthropology.  I hope she writes some more books with these characters. 

Undead and Unwed was a fast read once I started it. It was a bit zany and silly like a Stephanie Plum novel, but I don't think I laughed out loud as much. (Stephanie and Lula crack me up!) It also had more sex scenes, or maybe more detailed scenes. I guess vampire fiction requires extra steamy sex scenes. Not a book for my 9 year old, anyway. :pb_rollseyes: I reserved the next 2 books from the library, so I guess I liked it. :pb_mrgreen:

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