Monday, December 30, 2019

2019 Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks Challenge

Welcome to the 2019

Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks Challenge 



Also home to the Well Educated Mind, Agatha Christie, 
Mind Voyages, Brit Trip perpetual challenges as well as 
52 Books Bingo and assorted mini challenges


The rules are very simple 
  • The challenge will run from January 1, 2019 through December 31, 2019. 
  • Our book weeks will begin on Sunday
  • Week one will begin on Tuesday, January 1st. 
  • Participants may join at any time. 
  • All books are acceptable except children books.** 
  • All forms of books are acceptable including e-books, audio books, etc. 
  • Re-reads are acceptable as long as they are read after January 1, 2019 
  • Books may overlap other challenges. 
  • If you have an blog, create an entry post linking to this blog. 
  • Sign up with Mr. Linky in the "I'm participating post" in the sidebar
  • You don't have a blog to participate. Post your weekly book in the comments section of each weekly post. 
  • Mr. Linky will be added to the bottom of the each weekly post for you to link to reviews of your reads. 

The goal is to read 52 books. How you get there is up to you. All the mini challenges are optional. Mix it up anyway you like. 


**in reference to children books. If it is a child whose reading it and involved in the challenge, then that's okay. If an adult is doing read aloud with kids, the book should be geared for the 9 - 12 age group and above and over 100 pages. If adult reading for own enjoyment, then a good rule of thumb to go by "is there some complexity to the story or is it too simple?" If it's too simple, then doesn't count.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

BW46: Nonfiction November




Are you ready to dive in to the world of nonfiction? From true crime to memoirs to cooking to self help to drama and poetry, nonfiction literature is just as diverse as fiction with a wide variety of subjects to choose.


Check out Lit Hub's Preview of Fall 2019 Nonfiction for science, technology, politics, history, and biography.

Bookriot's Rebecca Hussey has compiled a list of the 20 must read works of innovative nonfiction for 2019.

She Reads has put together a compelling list of 12 must read memoirs of 2019.

For those who don't typically read nonfiction, Off the Shelf has put together a list of The Best Narrative Nonfiction Books for Non-Nonfiction Readers to dip your toes into.

Poet Jamie McKendrick recommends the Best Poetry to Read in 2019.

Need a bit of inspiration? Dive into Goodreads Popular Nonfiction Christian reads.

Penguin books offers 15 Books to Help You Learn Something new.

If you love to cook, dig into Food and Wine's 18 Essential New Cookbooks for Fall which had me craving lasagna and shrimp.

Have fun exploring nonfiction this month.

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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.

In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.


Sunday, November 3, 2019

BW45: Whodunit Bookology -- Phryne Fisher



Our whodunit bookology detective for November is Phryne Fisher, who solves mysteries set in 1920's Melbourne and was created by Kerry Greenwood who also resides in Australia.

There are a number of ways to complete the bookology challenge, including but not limited to the suggestions below:

Read the first book in the series.
Read one book per letter in the character's first or last name.
Read one book per letter in the author's first or last name.
If you're really ambitious, one book per letter in the character's first and last name.
Follow in a character's footsteps and read a book set in the country or time period of the character.

Learn more about Kerry Greenwood, her books, how Phyrne came to life , and her thoughts on crime fiction with The Garrett Podcast.


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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.


In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.



Saturday, October 26, 2019

BW44: Mr. Macklin's Jack O'Lantern

Courtesy of Toby Ord





Mr. Macklin’s Jack O’Lantern

by

1897-1997


Mr. Macklin takes his knife 
And carves the yellow pumpkin face: 
Three holes bring eyes and nose to life, 
The mouth has thirteen teeth in place. 
Then Mr. Macklin just for fun 
Transfers the corn-cob pipe from his 
Wry mouth to Jack’s, and everyone 
Dies laughing! O what fun it is 
Till Mr. Macklin draws the shade 
And lights the candle in Jack’s skull. 
Then all the inside dark is made 
As spooky and as horrorful 
As Halloween, and creepy crawl 
The shadows on the tool-house floor, 
With Jack’s face dancing on the wall. 
O Mr. Macklin! where's the door?


Happy Halloween 

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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.

In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.



Saturday, October 19, 2019

BW43: 52 Books Bingo - Sacred



Our next 52 books Bingo category is Sacred. Everyone's definition of sacred is personal and the rabbit trails are numerous and varied when it comes to Sacred literature from history to inspirational to spiritual growth and more.

The Scripture of Mankind by Samuel Charles Braden, attempts to define what is sacred literature and asks "What constitutes sacred literature? How does it differ from ordinary literature? Well, first of all, not in its being religious. For there is much religious literature that is not regarded as sacred; and a great deal of the content of so-called sacred literature is not necessarily directly religious at all, though indirectly it is usually in some way linked up with religion. In sacred literature are found history, legislation, poetry, letters, fables, myths, drama, genealogies, prophecy, visions, laments, martial songs, indeed almost the whole gamut of literary variety is to be found."

The Internet Sacred Text Archive is a font of online books covering religion, mythology, and folklore.

Peruse Goodreads listopia Different Takes on Religion and Spirituality to the Sacred and Secular to Desert Spirituality.

Dip your toes into Sacred Geometry or Sacred Poetry to Thoreau on the Sacredness of Libraries or dive into the Sacred Sea.

Read a book with Sacred in the title, spell it out or use a synonym.

Read an old friend that is sacred to you for its mirth, depth, ever expanding hope and joy.

Have fun following rabbit trails of thought and imagination.


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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.

In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.




Sunday, October 13, 2019

BW42: Masaoka Shiki





In honor of Masoaka Shiki, born October 14,1867, who influenced and developed the modern form of Japanese Haiku and Tanka.



Asleep in a boat
I lie side by side with it:
the River of Heaven


coolness-
a mountain stream splashes out
between houses


an old pond-
floating upside down
a cicada's shell


crimson sunset
even through clouds
vernal equinox


fallen petals of
the crimson plum I pluck
from the tatami


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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.

In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.




Sunday, October 6, 2019

BW41: October Spooktacular



Are you ready for a Spooktacular October full of chills and thrills, spine tingling adventure stories, and unexpected, jump out and surprise you, don't turn the lights off reads? If you are anything like me, gruesome horror isn't your thing. However, psychological, mind bending, Hitchcock type thrillers full of suspense are my favorite type of reads, along with paranormal, ghosts, vampires, were wolves and the weird. 

If you haven't read the classics, now would be your chance with Frankenstein or Dracula, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, The Picture of Dorian Grey or Something Wicked This Way Comes. Put away your expectations because you may be surprised when they don't turn out how you suspect they will.

If you need a few ideas, check out Bustle's 20 New Horror Books For Readers Who Take Spooky Season Seriously or 11 Books That Scared The Master of Horror, Stephen King, And Will Terrify You, Too, as well as 5 Classic Horror Novels You Can Finish in a Single Sitting.

Lit Reactor's The 15 Most Anticipated Horror Books of 2019

Bookriot's 25 Top Horror Books According to Goodreads or What to Read if You Love Hitchcock Movies.

Haunted Rooms 12 Best Ghost Books to Keep You Up at Night.

Vampire Book Club's Sure fire favorites for Urban Fantasy

Off the Shelf's 8 Psychological Thrillers With Twists You Won’t See Coming

I've grown quite fond of Dean Koontz amazing stories and currently have Watchers as well as Intensity along with Dan Simmons Hollow Man, Steven King's The Green Mile,  Josh Mallerman's Bird Box, and James Rollins Deep Fathom on my nightstand. Which one shall I read?

What spooktacular books will you be reading this month?

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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.


In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.




Sunday, September 29, 2019

BW40: Whodunit Bookology - Toby Peters




Our October Whodunit Bookology detective of the the month is Toby Peters, created by Stuart Kaminsky who has authored more than 50 novels and is the former president of the Mystery Writers Association.

There are a number of ways to complete the bookology challenge, including but not limited, to the suggestions below:

Read the first book in the series.
Read one book per letter in the character's first or last name.
Read one book per letter in the author's first or last name.
If you're really ambitious, one book per letter in the character's first and last name.
Follow in a character's footsteps and read a book set in the country or time period of the character.

Learn more about the character Toby Peters, the late Stuart Kaminsky, and his interviews with mystery writers in Behind the Mysteries.


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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.


In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.



Sunday, September 22, 2019

BW39: To Autumn by John Keats








To Autumn

John Keats - 1795-1821


Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep,
Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,--
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft,
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.


In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.



Sunday, September 15, 2019

BW38: Proust invokes the Past

Courtesy of Wikipedia
I have Marcel Proust on my mind today. A couple years ago I read Swann's Way which is the first volume of In Search For Lost Time which includes seven volumes: 

Swann’s Way
In the Shadow of Young Girls in Flower
The Guermantes Way
Sodom and Gomorrah
The Prisoner
The Fugitive
Time Regained


I had a love/hate relationship with the story. Proust is passionate about everything and long winded; his sentences flow like a river, side streams branching out in every direction. He’s a romantic at heart, with a sense of humor, analyzing everything. Sometimes I got caught up in his whirlpools of emotion and other times, I felt like I was a leaf floating on the surface of the water, bobbing along with no direction, no purpose. His stories aren’t meant to be casually read. His words require you to immerse yourself entirely, his stories  experienced and not just observed.   Check out Proust's Madeleine moment as well as Pieces of Light discussion on  Proustian Memory and the power of memory and sensory experiences.  

 “Taste and smell alone, more fragile but more enduring, more unsubstantial, more persistent, more faithful, remained poised a long time, like souls, remembering, waiting, hoping, amid the ruins of all the rest; and bear unflinchingly, in the tiny and almost impalpable drop of their essence, the vast structure of recollection.” ~Marcel Proust 

Which led to my very own Madeliene moment.

It’s on the tip of my tongue, both physically, mentally and emotionally. A taste, a scent, that takes me back. But back to where? A fleeting memory of time past. So amazing how smells and flavors can catch me unaware, make me stop and reflect. There have been many times over the years when a scent wafted past my nose and took me back to high school, or an old house, a day on the lake, or a moment of grief.

Honeysuckle takes me back to my first home in Texas and sipping on a honeysuckle bush outside a friend’s house. I can see our block, our neighbors, long forgotten and pushed a bit further into the background of my conscious with each move. My dad was in the military so there were many moves over the years. Our house was the gathering spot and I remember long summer days and evenings playing hide-n-seek, head stands on the front lawn, and the boy next door teasing me.

Growing up and even into my 20’s, I couldn’t understand my parents fixation with food when we traveled. The concern of where and when we were going to stop and eat. Do we eat to live or live to eat? It wasn’t until later I realized it wasn’t the food, but the place. Food takes on a different flavor when we equate it with a place, use it as a placeholder for our memories. A favorite restaurant takes on a new meaning when it isn’t the food we are going for, but the camaraderie and a place to rest, think and talk.

When my mother died, dad insisted on going to one of their favorite restaurants. Little did I know they’d practically adopted the owner and the staff into the family. Surrounded by love, familiar scents and comfort food, it helped him grieve.

Favorite foods, recipes from the past passed on, not just because they taste good, but because it reminds us of mom and grandma and of bright days cooking and puttering around the kitchen, eating and playing games.

I love how Proust poetically and philosophically leads us to the point of memory. He could have very well said – It’s on the tip of my tongue. But where is the beauty in that?



In 1886, when Proust was 14, he was asked to fill out a questionnaire regarding his writing. The original manuscript was recovered and in 2003, it was sold at auction for $120,000. Below are the questions:


What is your idea of perfect happiness?
What is your greatest fear?
What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Which living person do you most admire?
What is your greatest extravagance?
What is your current state of mind?
What do you consider the most overrated virtue?
On what occasion do you lie?
What do you most dislike about your appearance?
Which living person do you most despise?
What is the quality you most like in a man?
What is the quality you most like in a woman?
Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
What or who is the greatest love of your life?
When and where were you happiest?
Which talent would you most like to have?
If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?
Where would you most like to live?
What is your most treasured possession?
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
What is your favorite occupation?
What is your most marked characteristic?
What do you most value in your friends?
Who are your favorite writers?
Who is your hero of fiction?
Which historical figure do you most identify with?
Who are your heroes in real life?
What are your favorite names?
What is it that you most dislike?
What is your greatest regret?
How would you like to die?
What is your motto?

How would you answer these questions? And perhaps create your very own madeleine while doing so. 

Create a perpetual challenge for yourself and join me in reading Marcel Proust's In Search of Lost Time.  I'll be continuing my read with In Search of Young Girls in Flower 

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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.


In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.



Sunday, September 8, 2019

BW37: 52 Books Bingo - Medical/Legal Thrillers





Our next 52 Books Bingo category is Medical and Legal Thrillers. Medical thrillers may involve a mysterious disease such as Michael Crichton's The Andromeda Strain or center around doctors or medical personnel such as in Robin Cook's Coma. Legal thrillers center around lawyers and judges, legal issues, and courtroom drama such as John Grisham's The Firm or Brad Meltzer's The Tenth Justice.

The International Thriller Writers society has published several short story anthologies including Thrillers: 100 Must Reads and is a great source for writers who write all types of thrillers. Another great source is Crime Reads.

10 Best Legal Thrillers That Bring the Courtroom Drama according to Celedon Books.

ABA Journal's Pick for the Top 10 Law Novels of the Last 10 Years

BestThrillers.com The 21 Best Legal Thrillers of the 21st Century, Ranked

10 Legal Thrillers on Alafair Burke’s Bookshelf

Pinterest list of Medical Thrillers

Crimereads 9 Great Medical Thrillers chosen by a physician and the Enduring Power of the Medical Thriller.


Amazon New Releases - Legal Thrillers and Medical Thrillers

Indian Prairie Public Library All Time Faves: Medical Thrillers


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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.


In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.



Sunday, September 1, 2019

BW36: Whodunit Bookology - Darko Dawson





Our September Whodunit Bookology detective is Detective Inspector Darko Dawson and his story is set in Accra, Ghana. We are introduced to Inspector Dawson in Wife of the Gods, the first book in a 5 book series written by Kwei Quartey.

Kwei Quartey was born in Ghana where both his parents lectured at the University of Ghana. Although he loved books and writing, during Kwei's teen years he decided to become a doctor. He never gave up his love for writing and found a way to blend both his writing and medical career. He currently resides in Pasadena, California, and works at a wound care clinic three days a week, dedicating the rest of his time to writing.

There are a number of ways to complete the bookology challenge, including but not limited, to the suggestions below:

Read the first book in the series.
Read one book per letter in the character's first or last name.
Read one book per letter in the author's first or last name.
If you're really ambitious, one book per letter in the character's first and last name.
Follow in a character's footsteps and read a book set in the country or time period of the character.

Learn more about Kwei Quartey through his blog NPR interviews, or Criminal Elements Welcome to Ghana review of Wife of the Gods. Check out LitNet's Indepth review of Wife of the Gods if you don't mind a few spoilers.


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If you'd like to share your book reviews, you may link to your website, blog, Goodreads, Google+, Tumblers, or Instagram page. If you do not have any internet or social media account, please leave a comment to let us know what you are reading. Please do not add links of 52 Books, nonexistent or old web pages. They will be deleted. If your link disappears, please email me if you need to change or update your links. The linking widget closes at the end of each book week.

In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field paste a link to your post, then check the privacy box and click enter.