Sunday, December 24, 2017

BW52: 2017 Reading Year Wrap Up

White House Book Tree 2013 

Merry Christmas to you and yours!  Our Adventurous Prime reading journey is drawing to a close.  Did you enjoy spelunking and digging up gems from around the world, uncovering polished stones as well as rough, blemished chunks of minerals just waiting to be revealed.  I had loads of fun searching for and reading new to me authors plus reading through series by favorite authors with the Birthstone Bookology challenge as well as delving into different centuries, countries, and genres with 52 Books Bingo.  

  • Where did your reading take you this year?
  • What was your reading goal for the year and did you meet or beat your personal goal?  Did you end with a prime number of reads?

  • Top 5 (or more) favorite reads?
  • Which book stayed with you the longest after finishing it?
  • Which book made you want to read it all over again?  
  • Which book did you think you were going to love, but didn't?
  • Which genres or authors you thought you'd never read and was pleasantly surprised to like them?
  • Which countries and time periods did you visit?
  • Which books or authors would you recommend everybody read? 
  • Which mini challenges did you enjoy? 
  • Please share favorite covers or quotes
  • And last, but not least, share your list of completed reads! 
Congratulations and thank you to everyone who joined in our 2017 adventurous reading year.    I'd also like to thank all who have followed our progress.  Are you ready to dive in yet?  *grin*  Whether you read fast or slow or listen to audio books;  read fluffy, light romances or heavy classics, comedy to drama, urban fantasies to thrillers, or nonfiction to comics, the most essential thing is reading.  

“Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.” 
~ Charles William Eliot

I have enjoyed sharing our reading journey and look forward to the new year and more bookish adventures.  

~Cheers to a blessed and happy reading new year!

Link to your most current read and / or year end wrap up. Please link to your specific book review post and not your general blog link. In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field leave a link to your specific post.


Sunday, December 17, 2017

BW51: Winter Solstice

Winter is coming!  Officially, Winter begins with the Solstice on December 21st.  Unofficially, with the falling temperatures, it's already began as we've been bundling up in several layers while we take our evening walks around the neighborhood. However, I do chicken out and abandon my poor hubby to the cold, curling up with a good book when it hits below 40.  Sometimes he'll join me in reading. Other days he's determined to get those 25,000 steps.  Brrr! 

A Winter Day


Lucy Maud Montgomery

The air is silent save where stirs 
A bugling breeze among the firs; 
The virgin world in white array 
Waits for the bridegroom kiss of day; 
All heaven blooms rarely in the east 
Where skies are silvery and fleeced, 
And o'er the orient hills made glad 
The morning comes in wonder clad; 
Oh, 'tis a time most fit to see 
How beautiful the dawn can be! 

Wide, sparkling fields snow-vestured lie 
Beneath a blue, unshadowed sky; 
A glistening splendor crowns the woods 
And bosky, whistling solitudes; 
In hemlock glen and reedy mere 
The tang of frost is sharp and clear;
Life hath a jollity and zest, 
A poignancy made manifest; 
Laughter and courage have their way 
At noontide of a winter's day.

Faint music rings in wold and dell, 
The tinkling of a distant bell, 
Where homestead lights with friendly glow 
Glimmer across the drifted snow; 
Beyond a valley dim and far 
Lit by an occidental star, 
Tall pines the marge of day beset 
Like many a slender minaret, 
Whence priest-like winds on crystal air 
Summon the reverent world to prayer. 

What wintry books are you contemplating for the season?  Are your characters heading into the arctic and going dog sledding or are they searching for a warm beach to watch the dolphins play. Hmm? Both sound fun.  

I have a mini winter challenge if you want to play.   

  • Read a book with Winter in the title
  • Read a book written by an author with first or last name of Winter
  • Spell out winter, reading one book for each letter.
  • Read a book by Lucy Maud Montgomery 
  • Pick any word out of the poem above and read a book with that word in the title.
  • Pick any word out of the poem above and spell out the word, reading one book per letter.
  • Read a book with a winter setting.  

Happy Reading! 

Please link to your specific  post and not your general blog link. In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field leave a link to your specific post. If you don't have a blog, leave a comment telling us what you have been reading.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

2018 52 Books in 52 Weeks

Books are the plane, and the train, and the road. 
They are the destination, and the journey. 
They are home.” ~  Anna Quindlen

Are you ready to join me for another round of reading 52 Books in 52 Weeks! Are you a monogamous reader who reads or listens to only one book at a time or are you more of a whimsical reader, dipping your toes into multiple books at once?  Do you have books gathering dust on your shelves that you haven't quite gotten round to yet? 52 Books is your official round tuit.  *grin* 

Do you have some old friends you'd really like to revisit? Now is the time. Dip into that classic or chunkster (over 500 pages) that's been calling out to you to read. Challenge yourself by exploring new to you authors, different genres.  Whether you are just joining in for the first time or continuing  for another round, the rules are very simple.   The goal is to read 52 books. How you get there is up to you. 

This year we'll be going around the world again. Join me on the open roads as we traverse the world from the Silk Road to the Roman Roads, across glaciers and seas, climb the Alps, explore the Middle East as well as trek through the Sahara desert.  Check out the Armchair Travels and Authors for our monthly itinerary. 

Plus Sandy and Amy from Well Trained Mind will be co-hosting the Great Mysterious England Road Trip,  a year long read of mysteries through the counties of England starting in February.    

We have a variety of challenges to assist with our reading voyage this year including another round of 52 Books Bingo with bonus 18 mystery squares. 

Blossom Bookology reading challenge:  Like flowers, books have a language all their own and fill up our senses, each with their own essence.  This challenge will take you around the world and engage your senses in a variety of ways.  Read one book for each letter in the name of the flower, with the flower in the title or set in the country where the flower originated.   

Dusty Mini challenge: Limit buying new books for 1 - 4 months and/or read 4 or more books that have been gathering dust on your shelves prior to 2018.

Chunky Mini Challenge -  books more than 500 pages.

Well Educated Mind (perpetual):  Continuing exploring the classics in 6 categories: Fiction, Autobiography, History/Politics, Drama, Poetry and Science. 

Mind Voyages (perpetual):  a science fiction / fantasy challenge to explore the Hugo and Nebula winners, take side trips through the different decades reading the nominees.

The mini, weekly and monthly challenges are all optional, Mix them up anyway you like.

So grab your backpacks and walking shoes - don't forget your hat - and let's get started.

  • The challenge will run from January 1, 2018 through December 31, 2018. 
  • Our book weeks begin on Sunday. 
  • Participants may join at any time. 
  • All books are acceptable including comic books and graphic novels. 
  • 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, 2018. 
  • Books may overlap other challenges. 
  • Create an entry post linking to this blog. 
  • Sign up with Mr. Linky in the "I'm participating post" 
  • You don't need 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 weekly post to link to reviews of your most current reads.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

BW50: Eating and reading through the holidays

It's time to start cooking!  December is a time of celebration  which means baking and experimenting with different recipes as well as making or remaking of the old standards. Years ago, my son and I read How to Make an Apple Pie and see the world by Majorie Priceman.  After reading the book, we followed the recipe in the back.  Such simple ingredients --- apples, cinnamon, sugar, salt, butter -- which when mixed together, created the world's best apple pie.  Absolutely delish.  

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to take one of your favorite recipes and read a book with the one of the ingredients in the title. Or choose one of your favorite cookbooks and read a book with one of the colors that is on the cover. 

In the meantime, while your house is filling up with appetizing aromas and you are waiting for the timer to ding, check out a few scrumptious finds:

Foodie books for every eater and reader on your Christmas List.

Taste of Home Christmas 2017

27 Books Every Foodie Needs In Their Library

Best Food Focused Memoirs

10 of the best new cookbooks in 2017

“Give two cooks the same ingredients and the same recipe; it is fascinating to observe how, like handwriting, their results differ. After you cook a dish repeatedly, you begin to understand it. Then you can reinvent it a bit and make it yours. A written recipe can be useful, but sometimes the notes scribbled in the margin are the key to a superlative rendition. Each new version may inspire improvisation based on fresh understanding. It doesn't have to be as dramatic as all that, but such exciting minor epiphanies keep cooking lively.”   ~  David Tanis, Heart of the Artichoke: and Other Kitchen Journeys

Happy Cooking!


Please link to your specific  post and not your general blog link. In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field leave a link to your specific post. If you don't have a blog, leave a comment telling us what you have been reading.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

BW49: Delightful December

Gerardus Mercator's Map of the North Pole 1595

Welcome to Delightful December and our birthstone of the month, Turquoise.  We have much to celebrate this month with St. Nicholas Day, Advent, Hanukkah, St. Lucia Day, Christmas, arrival of Winter as well as Festivus for the rest of us, Iceland's Jolabokaflod, Sweden's Julbok (Yule goat) and Finland's Joulupukki.  I'm in the mood to go to the North Pole and do some cooking with Mrs  Claus.

If cold December gave you birth—
The month of snow, and ice, and mirth—
Place on your hand a turquoise blue,
Success will bless whate'er you do.
~Author unknown, "A Gem for Every Month," c.1883

Speaking of Turquoise, our birthstone of the month, you may choose to spell out the word, reading one book per letter or read a book with the name or the colors of the stone in the title.  Perhaps find an author whose name is Topaz or spell out the word using author names.   You may decide to find a book set in the time period where the birthstone was discovered or surrounding the myth and lore or set in countries where the birthstone is currently found.

This month, I think I'll join Harold and his purple crayon as he goes in search of the north pole in Harold at the North Pole.  

Unfortunately we won't find any penguins there, but we may find the occasional polar bear, ringed seals and Arctic foxes roaming about.   

You may want to bundle up before you read about Arctic expeditions to the North Pole with Hampton Sides - In the Kingdom of Ice: The Grand and Terrible Polar Voyage of the USS Jeannette or Bruce Henderson's  True North:  Peary, Cook, and the Race to the Pole as well as  Fatal North: Murder and Survival on the First North Pole Expedition

Or take a thrilling fictional trip with Alistair MacLean in Ice Station Zebra, Jack London in Call of the Wild or Lincoln Child's Terminal Freeze.  Read more about the North Pole in the New Yorker's Literature's Arctic Obsession and Ali Shaw's The Written World: The North Pole

Be sure to check out Goodread's list of Popular Arctic books as well as the Listopia of North Pole books.

Have fun exploring!  


Please link to your specific  post and not your general blog link. In the Your Name field, type in your name and the name of the book in parenthesis. In the Your URL field leave a link to your specific post. If you don't have a blog, leave a comment telling us what you have been reading.