WWW Wednesday! February 28, 2018

I had this post “scheduled” for 5 today…what I thought was A.M. this morning but I finally realized after checking my blog that I’d clicked P.M. when scheduling, so lesson learned: double check when trying to preschedule posts!

It has been months since I’ve done a WWW post, but I’m hoping to participate in this weekly meme regularly,  so we’ll see! 

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WWW Wednesdays is a weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words. Here’s how it works: all you need to do is answer the following three questions and link back to her, or you can put your answers in the comments on her blog!

The three WWW questions are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

 

Currently, I’m reading: 

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

Sixteen-year-old Aza never intended to pursue the mystery of fugitive billionaire Russell Pickett, but there’s a hundred-thousand-dollar reward at stake and her Best and Most Fearless Friend, Daisy, is eager to investigate. So together, they navigate the short distance and broad divides that separate them from Russell Pickett’s son, Davis.

Aza is trying. She is trying to be a good daughter, a good friend, a good student, and maybe even a good detective, while also living within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts.

In his long-awaited return, John Green, the acclaimed, award-winning author of Looking for Alaska and The Fault in Our Stars, shares Aza’s story with shattering, unflinching clarity in this brilliant novel of love, resilience, and the power of lifelong friendship.

Murder in Little Shendon by A.H. Richardson

Picture, if you will, a picturesque village called Little Shendon, suddenly caught up in dealing with a murder of one of its citizens – not a particularly well-liked one at that. Which makes it all the more intriguing because the list of suspects becomes very long. This tantalizing tale unfolds with delightful twists and turns to find out whodunit to Mr. Bartholomew Fynche, the murdered shopkeeper. Fear grips the community as the investigation slowly progresses. Everyone is interviewed; everyone is suspect! From the murdered man’s housekeeper to Lady Armstrong, her staff and her nephew. Or could it be the shy librarian new in town? Or the defiant retired army major and his ladyfriend, the post mistress? Or perhaps the weird sisters who live on the edge of town? Then there is the couple who own the local inn and pub, along with the two Americans who are staying there? Even the vicar and his wife fall under the gloom of suspicion. Uncertainty, wariness, and terror reign as neighbors watch neighbors to discover the evil that permeates their upturned lives. No one feels safe in this charming little village. A.H. Richardson, noted author, places in your trembling hands a mystery murder that will keep you reading until you learn the details, uncovered by Police Inspector Stanley Burgess and his two amateur detectives, his friend Sir Victor Hazlitt and the famed Shakespearean actor Beresford Brandon. Scratch your head with them over the strange clues that turn up. Follow them as they tread carefully among the landmines that appear innocent as they lie hidden beneath the surface of mystery. Something evil skulks in this tiny country village. Who is the murderer? And why was this strange uncivil man dispatched in such a seemingly civil community? You are challenged to discover the culprit before the last few pages. And no fair looking ahead – it’s the journey that proves the most enticing.

The Witches by Roald Dahl (a buddy read with my 7 year old daughter)

This is not a fairy-tale. This is about real witches. Real witches don’t ride around on broomsticks. They don’t even wear black cloaks and hats. They are vile, cunning, detestable creatures who disguise themselves as nice, ordinary ladies. So how can you tell when you’re face to face with one? Well, if you don’t know yet you’d better find out quickly-because there’s nothing a witch loathes quite as much as children and she’ll wield all kinds of terrifying powers to get rid of them.

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

At the edge of the Russian wilderness, winter lasts most of the year and the snowdrifts grow taller than houses. But Vasilisa doesn’t mind–she spends the winter nights huddled around the embers of a fire with her beloved siblings, listening to her nurse’s fairy tales. Above all, she loves the chilling story of Frost, the blue-eyed winter demon, who appears in the frigid night to claim unwary souls. Wise Russians fear him, her nurse says, and honor the spirits of house and yard and forest that protect their homes from evil.

After Vasilisa’s mother dies, her father goes to Moscow and brings home a new wife. Fiercely devout, city-bred, Vasilisa’s new stepmother forbids her family from honoring the household spirits. The family acquiesces, but Vasilisa is frightened, sensing that more hinges upon their rituals than anyone knows.

And indeed, crops begin to fail, evil creatures of the forest creep nearer, and misfortune stalks the village. All the while, Vasilisa’s stepmother grows ever harsher in her determination to groom her rebellious stepdaughter for either marriage or confinement in a convent.

As danger circles, Vasilisa must defy even the people she loves and call on dangerous gifts she has long concealed–this, in order to protect her family from a threat that seems to have stepped from her nurse’s most frightening tales.

Last week I finished reading:

affliction

The Affliction by Beth Gutcheon: This was not a good read for me; I almost DNFd but finished it and ended up giving it 2.5 Stars

flight

The Flight Attendant by Chris Bohjalian: Excellent 5 star thriller! My full review will be posted closer to its publication (3/13th).

lion

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis: A reread of one my all-time favorite books; this was a buddy read with my 7 year old daughter! 5 Stars of course!

nightroad

Night Road by Kristin Hannah: This was absolutely wonderful!  Another 5 star read by Hannah. Review upcoming!

*2018 Popsugar Reading Challenge Prompt: A book with characters who are twins*

neverletgo

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro: I’m teaching this book in my Interpreting Literature class this semester, the end of March actually, so I needed to reread it! It is not my favorite Ishiguro-I like Remains of the Day much better and felt pretty ambivalent when I was done reading it. It was still a 4 Star read since Ishiguro is a master writer!

* 2018 Popsugar Reading Challenge Prompt: A book with song lyrics in the title*

blue

Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley: A beautifully written and deeply touching story about friendship, grief, love, and healing. 4 Stars

* 2018 Popsugar Reading Challenge Prompt: A book that involves a bookstore or library*

 

Next, I plan on reading:

This could change depending on my mood since I’m a definite mood reader, so I was having so much trouble last year when doing this meme when I felt like I had to “schedule” my next reads, so we’ll so! But I plan on reading these next as well as finish up any books that I might still be reading 😉

exitwest

Exit West by Mohsin Hamid: This is next up on to teach in my Interpreting Literature after Never Let Me Go, so I’ll be reading it to prepare before I teach it the beginning of April. It’s been on my TBR since it was published last year, so I’ve wanted to read for a while…now I have to!

In a country teetering on the brink of civil war, two young people meet—sensual, fiercely independent Nadia and gentle, restrained Saeed. They embark on a furtive love affair and are soon cloistered in a premature intimacy by the unrest roiling their city. When it explodes, turning familiar streets into a patchwork of checkpoints and bomb blasts, they begin to hear whispers about doors—doors that can whisk people far away, if perilously and for a price. As the violence escalates, Nadia and Saeed decide that they no longer have a choice. Leaving their homeland and their old lives behind, they find a door and step through.

Exit West follows these characters as they emerge into an alien and uncertain future, struggling to hold on to each other, to their past, to the very sense of who they are. Profoundly intimate and powerfully inventive, it tells an unforgettable story of love, loyalty, and courage that is both completely of our time and for all time.

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Every Note Played by Lisa Genova: I’ve loved Lisa Genova since reading Still Alice, and I hope this one is just as good! I was thrilled to get an ARC from NetGalley and have been holding onto it for months, but it comes out March 20, so I need to read it!!

An accomplished concert pianist, Richard received standing ovations from audiences all over the world in awe of his rare combination of emotional resonance and flawless technique. Every finger of his hands was a finely calibrated instrument, dancing across the keys and striking each note with exacting precision. That was eight months ago.

Richard now has ALS, and his entire right arm is paralyzed. His fingers are impotent, still, devoid of possibility. The loss of his hand feels like a death, a loss of true love, a divorce—his divorce.

He knows his left arm will go next.

Three years ago, Karina removed their framed wedding picture from the living room wall and hung a mirror there instead. But she still hasn’t moved on. Karina is paralyzed by excuses and fear, stuck in an unfulfilling life as a piano teacher, afraid to pursue the path she abandoned as a young woman, blaming Richard and their failed marriage for all of it.

When Richard becomes increasingly paralyzed and is no longer able to live on his own, Karina becomes his reluctant caretaker. As Richard’s muscles, voice, and breath fade, both he and Karina try to reconcile their past before it’s too late.

Poignant and powerful, Every Note Played is a masterful exploration of redemption and what it means to find peace inside of forgiveness.

 

chalkman

The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor: I’ve had this one for months, and I keep meaning to pick it up. The mixed reviews have me somewhat conflicted, but I figure I might as well dive in and see what I think! I can always DNF…right? Or can I, lol! That is the biggest question of them all!

In 1986, Eddie and his friends are just kids on the verge of adolescence. They spend their days biking around their sleepy English village and looking for any taste of excitement they can get. The chalk men are their secret code: little chalk stick figures they leave for one another as messages only they can understand. But then a mysterious chalk man leads them right to a dismembered body, and nothing is ever the same.

In 2016, Eddie is fully grown and thinks he’s put his past behind him, but then he gets a letter in the mail containing a single chalk stick figure. When it turns out that his friends got the same message, they think it could be a prank–until one of them turns up dead. That’s when Eddie realizes that saving himself means finally figuring out what really happened all those years ago.

 

tower

The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden: If this is as gorgeous as The Bear and the Nightingale, then I’m going to read it in a few hours!!  Definitely my next read…

The magical adventure that begun in The Bear and the Nightingale continues as brave Vasya, now a young woman, is forced to choose between marriage or life in a convent and instead flees her home—but soon finds herself called upon to help defend the city of Moscow when it comes under siege.

Orphaned and cast out as a witch by her village, Vasya’s options are few: resign herself to life in a convent, or allow her older sister to make her a match with a Moscovite prince. Both doom her to life in a tower, cut off from the vast world she longs to explore. So instead she chooses adventure, disguising herself as a boy and riding her horse into the woods. When a battle with some bandits who have been terrorizing the countryside earns her the admiration of the Grand Prince of Moscow, she must carefully guard the secret of her gender to remain in his good graces—even as she realizes his kingdom is under threat from mysterious forces only she will be able to stop.

 

What good books are you reading this week or have you recently finished? What wonderful books do you plan on reading next? I’d love to hear what you’re reading so I can have more ideas for my ever-growing TBR pile! 🙂

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26 thoughts on “WWW Wednesday! February 28, 2018

    1. The one’s I’m reading with my daughter, we only read maybe 20-30 min a day. And I’ve had the flu and pneumonia since the beginning of Feb, and was out of work 2 weeks so I’ve pretty much just been reading. But I’ve always read 3 or 4 at a time, so I don’t get bored, or one is usually an audiobook to listen to while driving. And I don’t usually fall sleep until 1 or 2am anyway, so I read until I do.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Three or four at a time is still pretty impressive! I’m the exact opposite. I have to stick to one book or I get confused and mix storylines and I still haven’t mastered the art of listening to audiobooks yet. One day I hope to change that though! So, yeah, I still commend your awesome ability, haha.

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      2. Aww, thanks! I think it just became a habit over the years. My mom was pretty abusive, and that is being nice, so books were always my way to escape my life and being an only child, they and the characters were the closest things I had at times to friends. Now, like I said it’s just a habit to have more than 1 book going at a time, but I might not pick up one or two of the books for days at a time and just focus on 1. Like yesterday I read all of The Girl in the Tower in a couple of hours as soon as I finished The Bear and the Nightingale, lol. Oh, audiobooks! I have a love/hate relationship with them!! I used to loathe them, but now I’m using them more or I wouldn’t be able to read as much since reading and using the PC/Kindle, etc is still giving me migraines if I over do it, so I’m getting used to them! But if the narrator sucks, then NOPE! So I completely understand! And I make Kayley read kids books to me, lol. Reading multiple books is my only superpower, LOL!! 😉

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      3. I just realized I responded to this in my head, haha. I’m so sorry your mother was abusive. I’m sure that doesn’t mean much now but seems like you came out best even through what you had to deal with :). I was the same way when I was younger. My mom had to pry books out of my hands cause I loved them so much and I wasn’t interested in making real friends, haha. I can understand the relationship with audiobooks. I’ve heard it’s all in the narrator! I just can’t seem to bring myself to listen to a narration cause I imagine the voices in my head so vividly, hahaha. Oh! That’s awesome that you have your daughter read to you. I’m sure that’s great time you two spend together and probably enriches her love for reading like her beautiful mommy. ❤

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      4. Thank you, Nel. It still means a lot to hear it. I went through years and years of therapy to get over her and even know there are times when I still try to figure it all out, but I’m just glad I’m not like her. I do have her to thank for being the reader that I am since she was always reading to me from as early as I can remember, buying me books, not allowing me to watch tv but read instead, and I don’t think I ever saw her without a book unless she was working. Yes! Narration is such a pain! I’ve got a few narrators I completely dislike, which sucks because I look and they’re narrating books I like, lol. I love her reading to me!! It’s such a great way to spend time together, and its increased her reading fluency so much! She’s just tested at reading at an end of 3rd grade level for her middle of year reading testing in 2nd grade, and I know it’s because she’s reading all the time, and reading books she loves instead of one’s they’re making her read. You’re too sweet!! And beautiful yourself! ❤❤

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      5. You are such a role model. I’m going to be a mother this year and I just want you to know you’re setting a good example for me. I’m just jotting down all these good ideas so thank you for that. 😁💜

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      6. Omg!! Congrats!! When?? I’m so excited I could burst!! 😍😍😍😍 And thank you! I don’t know what I did, lol. But thank you!! I hope I can help give you ideas!! You’re going to be an amazing mommy!! 🤗🤗

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      7. I’m 22 weeks along this week so I’m due in early July. Your messages have always been so positive towards me and the world really even when your sick. And everytime you talk about caring for your daughter it just makes me smile so big and I just think how I hope to be just like mom’s like you and Jenn. 🤗

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      8. Aww, how exciting!! You are over halfway there! I had this feeling around Christmas that you might be when you would comment about going to Dr appointments but then I thought I was being silly, lol. I guess I was right, haha! Thank you! I think you just have to be positive no matter what 🙂 Though trust me, I have my down and depressed days too. I just adore her; I guess you can tell! I love all 3 more than my life, but the boys barely need me anymore, so it’s so weird…You will be such a fabulous mom!! I know you will be! 🙂 ❤

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      9. Haha yes. Apparently I didn’t realize how often I mentioned doctor appointments and a few other bloggers picked up on that as well, haha, so yes you were right! Just growing a baby is so nerve wracking let me tell you. I will definitely do my best to be the best mom that’s for sure! Thank you! 😊

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      10. Haha, yes you did! I’m glad I wasn’t the only one then 🙂 Oh, yes it is!! I hope your pregnancy is going well though! I always had preterm labor and was on bed rest so by 22 weeks, I would have been stuck in bed…ugh! That is no fun… I just know you will be..no doubt in my mind! You’re welcome!

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      1. Yes, I’m almost 50% into the book, but I’m still a bit hazy about this book… there are a lot of intrigues and the facts, say, how exactly they were brought into the world and I feel intrigued, but a bit frustrated lol

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      2. He really gives no facts about that but just focuses on the emotional and psychological aspect. Not sure if that helps you be less frustrated or makes you more, lol. I never actually wondered where they came from until just now, lol. I don’t know what I thought!

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      3. Glad I could help!! I didn’t want you frustrated but didn’t want to give anything away! But yes, just listen to Kathy’s reminisce and infer from there and of course, there are the parts in the present. I don’t think he wanted the book to be “scientific,” which is why there’s no discussion of how the kids were made, etc because then it would raise a lot of questions that he’s not trying to pose. It’s very intriguing and he’s a very brilliant writer.

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      4. Lol, that would be crazily funny if they were! There’s no way that I’d have read it if they were cyborgs, hahaha! Remember, I hate sci-fi (as in other beings, aliens, etc) even though this technically sci-fi but it’s dystopian…ugh. It’s confusing, lol.

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      5. Right! Dystopian Lit is how we have it “labeled” in our Literature dept in the University and how I have it for my lecture notes, so I’m going with that since I don’t like sci-fi, LOL! Yes!! I do…with a passion! And I’m doing the Popsugar Reading Challenge this year, and one of the prompts is a book set on another planet, so I freaked out, lol. Then I picked The Martian since I found out there are no aliens…hahaha! I’m still not thrilled to be reading it, but everyone says it’s good and I am trying to branch out my reading..sigh!

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  1. Great choices Steph! I love that cover of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, I used to have that exact copy! 🤗 I really need to make time for The Girl In The Tower too after loving the first one and I’m excited to hear your thoughts on Exit West, another one on my TBR!

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    1. Thanks! I ended up starting The Girl in the Tower yesterday as soon as I finished The Bear and the Nightingale and had it finished in a few hours! It was amazing! I don’t know how I’ll wait for book 3, lol! I hope to start Exit West next week 😊

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