Oct 28, 2019

It's Monday: What Are You Reading?

It's Monday: What Are You Reading is hosted by The Book Date. Visit  Mailbox Monday.


The Girl Who Reads on the Metro by Christine Feret-Fleury, October 8, 2019, Flatiron Books

Juliet, a dedicated book lover, is hired as a passeur, one who takes used books out into the world and matches them with likely readers.  My lovely library find. 

What books are you enjoying this week?

Oct 25, 2019

Review: Talking to Strangers by Malcolm Gladwell


Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don't Know
Talking to Strangers

Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don't Know by Malcolm Gladwell, September 10, 2019, Allen Lane. Personal copy. 

INTRODUCTION"Step out of the car!"
In July 2015 a young African American woman named Sandra Bland drove from her hometown of Chicago to a little town an hour west of Houston, Texas. She was interviewing for a job at Prairie View A&M University, the school she had graduated from a few years before. She was tall and striking with a personality to match....
The chapter goes on to describe the verbal exchange between Sandra and a Texas police officer who had pulled her over for failing to signal a lane change. The end result is that upstanding, educated, and blameless Sandra was arrested, handcuffed and thrown into jail. Three days later, she took her own life in prison.

And so begins this book, Talking to Strangers, by Malcolm Gladwell, on strangers meeting and the misunderstandings and false assumptions that can sometimes result in  tragic outcomes. 

Misreading strangers can lead to a guilty Bernie Madoff being trusted by duped investors, to an innocent Amanda Knox being incarcerated for years and tried for a crime for which she was later exonerated. Spies high up in government have been misread by the CIA and trusted with secrets the spies regularly leaked to a foreign power. And it goes on...

A fascinating book that I read cover to cover in just a few days, intrigued by the facts the author presented to make his case. People are not as transparent as they may seem to us. They may be something completely different.

Most people will give suspicious people the benefit of the doubt, which is good for society to run smoothly, in general, but which can be disastrous when their judgment is wrong. This is part of Gladwell's conclusions on this topic, and just a part of what the book has to say about how we interact with and interpret the actions and behavior of a variety of strangers. 

Page 57:
The next three chapters of Talking to Strangers are devoted to the ideas of a psychologist named Tim Levine, who has thought as much about the problem of why we are deceived by strangers as anyone in social science.... 
The book is persuasive, well researched, and thought-provoking. It will make you think twice or three times about the validity of your initial reaction to a stranger, positive or negative, whoever they may be.

Memes: The Friday 56. Grab a book, turn to page 56 or 56% of your eReader. Find any sentence that grabs you. Post it, and add your URL post in Linky at Freda's Voice. Also visit Book Beginning at Rose City Reader

Oct 19, 2019

Sunday Salon: Memoirs and Cozies

First in a new mystery series:

Poppy Redfern and the Midnight Murders (A Woman of WWII Mystery #1)

Poppy Redfern and the Midnight Murders by

Tessa Arlen, November 5, 2019, Berkley.
Genre: WWII historical mystery series, with Air Raid Warden and sleuth Poppy Redfern.
Location: Remote English village, 1942

Four cozy mysteries:

Mumbo Gumbo Murder (A Scrapbooking Mystery #16)

Mumbo Gumbo Murder: A New Orleans Scrapbooking Mystery

by Laura Childs, October 1, 2019, Berkley Books
Carmela and Ava solve a murder during Jazz Fest in New Orleans


The Chocolate Shark Shenanigans

The Chocolate Shark Shenanigans by JoAnna Carl,

November 5, 2019, Berkley Books. 
House flipping turns deadly in this Chocoholic Mystery.

City of Scoundrels (Counterfeit Lady, #3)

City of Scoundrels by Victoria Thompson

November 5, 2019, Berkley
Historical mystery set during the Great War.

A psychological thriller:

The Nanny

The Nanny by Gilly Macmillan, September 10, 2019, William Morrow

A seven-year-old grows up wondering why her nanny left without a trace, and why. 


Current library books:

The Right Sort of Man (Sparks & Bainbridge Mystery #1)
The Ungrateful Refugee
The Ungrateful Refugee

This is How I Save My Life: A True Story of Finding Everything When You are Willing to Try Anything

This Is How I Save My Life by Amy B. Scher, April 10, 2018, Gallery Books

Genre: memoir of a woman who travels from California to India in search of a life saving medical procedure to cure her Lyme disease.

What have you been reading this month?

Memes: 
The Sunday Post hosted by The Caffeinated Bookreviewer. Also,  It's Monday: What Are You ReadingMailbox Monday and the Sunday Salon

Oct 5, 2019

Sunday Salon: The End of Summer

Still reading:

My Coney Island Baby by Jonathan Cape, published January 17th, 2019 


The Translation of Love by Lynne Kutsukake, a Canadian author, April 2016, Doubleday


There are no new books on my desk but quite a few ebooks on my Kindle, thanks to Kindle Unlimited and First Reads. 

Other stuff:

It's very cool tonight but warm tomorrow. We have had a roller coaster of temperatures this summer and fall and never know what to expect from week to week. I have hibiscus blooming in the yard for the second time this year, while all the other flowers have died off, including the sedum above. 

I have been enjoying ice cream mochi from Whole Foods. Sweet rice dough made into balls filled with ice cream. I love the vanilla and the green tea ice cream fillings.

Memes: 
The Sunday Post hosted by The Caffeinated Bookreviewer. Also,  It's Monday: What Are You Reading, and the Sunday Salon

Sep 30, 2019

It's Monday: Books of Love and Loss

Books I'm reading this week:

My Coney Island Baby

My Coney Island BabyPublished January 17th 2019 by Jonathan Cape

I am finally getting into this novel about two married lovers who, for years, have been meeting once a month at Coney Island for an overnight assignation. Real life back home happens and they are dealing in the first chapters with the serious illness of the man's wife at home. The book is basically character-driven, though I am interested in the outcome of this unusual love situation.

The Translation of Love

The Translation of Love by Lynne Kutsukake, a Canadian author, April, 2016, Doubleday

Here is story of family love, and love and loss of home and country.  Fumi is searching for her older sister in post-war Japan, during the MacArthur era and the American occupation in Japan, and her unlikely helper is a displaced Japanese-Canadian who is in Japan with her father, a Canadian sent back to Japan after the war, rather than be sent to unknown parts of Canada away from the west coast that had been their home.  
I am eager to see how this story unfolds.

Memes: The Sunday Post hosted by The Caffeinated Bookreviewer. Also,  It's Monday: What Are You Reading, and the Sunday SalonMailbox Monday

Sep 22, 2019

Sunday Salon: Poems and Two Cozies

New books on the shelves:

Almost Home: Poems

Almost Home: Poems by Madison Kuhn

October 1, 2019; Gallery Books
Illustrations and poems of "home"

A Killer Carol (An Amish Mystery #7)

A Killer Carol by Laura Bradford, September 24, 2019; Berkley

Gift shop owner Claire tries to solve the murder of an elderly Amish couple in Pennsylvania.

A Night's Tail (Magical Cats Mystery #11)

 A Night's Tail by Sofie Kelly, September 3, 2019; Berkley

Librarian Kathleen and her two cats try to catch the killer of a visiting businessman in town.

Currently reading:

I was reading too many books to finish even one last week. Going from book to book, print to ebook and back, means that a book doesn't get read all the way through. Not a good habit, I am finding out.

I finished The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion for our book club early next month, but that's about it. 

How about you? Do you find yourself doing this too?

Memes: 
The Sunday Post hosted by The Caffeinated Bookreviewer. Also,  It's Monday: What Are You Reading, and the Sunday Salon,  Mailbox Monday.

Sep 20, 2019

The Bodies in the Library by Marty Wingate: Book Beginning


The Bodies in the Library (First Edition Library Mystery, #1)
The Bodies in the Library by Marty Wingate, October 2019, Berkley/Penguin Random House


Book beginning:
"I'll be leaving now, Ms. Burke."
I leapt up from the desk at this announcement -  knocking the phone on the floor in the process - and hurried out of my office.
"Yes, Mrs. Woolgar," I said, tugging on my jacket. "Have a lovely evening."

Page 56:
"Yes, that's right. I saw her late one afternoon -- running."

Memes: The Friday 56. Grab a book, turn to page 56 or 56% of your eReader. Find any sentence that grabs you. Post it, and add your URL post in Linky at Freda's Voice. Also visit Book Beginning at Rose City Reader

Sunday Salon: Japanese Authors and a Mystery

  Klara and the Sun   by Kazuo Ishiguro.  Klara and the Sun was easy to read for a literary novel of such magnitude and celebrity, I found...