The top 8 books to read in February 2020

Here are

The top 8 books
I plan to read in February 2020

Click on the covers to know more

CURRENTLY READING

Norwegian Wood  

📚 Norwegian Wood
Reading with the Murakami online book club
“Toru, a quiet and preternaturally serious young college student in Tokyo, is devoted to Naoko, a beautiful and introspective young woman, but their mutual passion is marked by the tragic death of their best friend years before. Toru begins to adapt to campus life and the loneliness and isolation he faces there, but Naoko finds the pressures and responsibilities of life unbearable. As she retreats further into her own world, Toru finds himself reaching out to others and drawn to a fiercely independent and sexually liberated young woman.”

A magnificent blending of the music, the mood, and the ethos that was the sixties with the story of one college student’s romantic coming of age, Norwegian Wood brilliantly recaptures a young man’s first, hopeless, and heroic love.

📚 Theological Territories: A David Bentley Hart Digest
Received for review through Edelweiss
Release date: April 15, by University of Notre Dame Press

See my notes so far

READING NEXT

Second Sister  The Ten loves of Mr Nishino

The Missing Sister   Inhabitation

📚 Second Sister
Received for review through Edelweiss
Release date: February 18
“An up-to-the-minute tale of a Darwinian digital city where everyone from tech entrepreneurs to teenagers is struggling for the top.
A schoolgirl—Siu-Man—has committed suicide, leaping from her twenty-second floor window to the pavement below. Siu-Man is an orphan and the librarian older sister who’s been raising her refuses to believe there was no foul play—nothing seemed amiss. She contacts a man known only as N.—a hacker, and an expert in cybersecurity and manipulating human behavior. But can Nga-Yee interest him sufficiently to take her case, and can she afford it if he says yes?
What follows is a cat and mouse game through the city of Hong Kong and its digital underground, especially an online gossip platform, where someone has been slandering Siu-Man. The novel is also populated by a man harassing girls on mass transit; high school kids, with their competing agendas and social dramas; a Hong Kong digital company courting an American venture capitalist; and the Triads, market women and noodle shop proprietors who frequent N.’s neighborhood of Sai Wan. In the end it all comes together to tell us who caused Siu-Man’s death and why, and to ask, in a world where online and offline dialogue has increasingly forgotten about the real people on the other end, what the proper punishment is.”

📚 The Ten Loves of Mr Nishino
Received for review through Edelweiss
Release date: June 2019!
Will be reading for the Japanese Literature Challenge #13.
Though it sounds very familiar, I may have already read it!!
“Each woman has succumbed, even if only for an hour, to that seductive, imprudent, and furtively feline man who drifted so naturally into their lives. Still clinging to the vivid memory of his warm breath and his indecipherable sentences, ten women tell their stories as they attempt to recreate the image of the unfathomable Nishino.
Like a modern Decameron, this humorous, sensual, and touching novel by one of Japan’s best-selling and most beloved writers is a powerful and embracing portrait of the human comedy in ten voices. Driven by desires that are at once unique and common, the women in this book are modern, familiar to us, and still mysterious. A little like Nishino himself.”

📚 The Missing Sister
Received for review for Criminal Element
Release date: April 1st
“Shayna Darby is finally coming to terms with her parents’ deaths when she’s delivered another blow. The body of her estranged twin sister, Angela—the possible victim of a serial killer—has been pulled from the Seine. Putting what’s left of her life on hold, Shayna heads to Paris. But while cleaning out Angela’s apartment, Shayna makes a startling discovery: a coded message meant for her alone…
Alive. Trust no one.
Taking the warning to heart, Shayna maintains the lie. She makes a positive ID on the remains and works to find out where—and why—her missing sister is hiding. Shayna retraces her sister’s footsteps, and they lead her down into Paris’s underbelly.
As she gets closer to the truth—and to the killer—Shayna’s own life may now be in the balance…”

📚 Inhabitation
Received for review through Edelweiss
Release date: July 2019!
Will be reading for the Japanese Literature Challenge #13.
“In 1970s Osaka, college student Tetsuyuki moves into a shabby apartment to evade his late father’s creditors. But the apartment’s electricity hasn’t been reconnected yet, and Tetsuyuki spends his first night in darkness. Wanting to hang up a tennis cap from his girlfriend, Yoko, he fumbles about in the dark and drives a nail into a pillar. The next day he discovers that he has pierced the body of a lizard, which is still alive. He decides to keep it alive, giving it food and water and naming it Kin.
Inhabitation unfolds from there, following the complications in Tetsuyuki’s relationship with Yoko, a friendship with his supervisor who hides his heart disease at work, and his father’s creditors, always close on his heels. Daunted, Tetsuyuki speaks to Kin night after night, and Kin’s peculiarly tortured situation reflects the mingled pain, love, and guilt that infuses Tetsuyuki’s human relationships.”

CURRENT AND NEXT AUDIOBOOKS

Complot The Red House Mystery

📚 Complot
French thriller, where the Norwegian Prime Minister is found dead in very strange circumstances. Loving it!

📚 The Red House Mystery (1922)
Will be listening for The Classics Club
“The creator of such beloved storybook characters for children as Winnie-the-Pooh, Piglet, and Eeyore, A. A. Milne was also the author of numerous dramas, essays, and novels for adults — among them, this droll and finely crafted whodunit.
In it, Milne takes readers to the Red House, a comfortable residence in the placid English countryside that is the bachelor home of Mr. Mark Ablett. While visiting this cozy retreat, amateur detective Anthony Gillingham and his chum, Bill Beverley, investigate their genial host’s disappearance and its connection with a mysterious shooting. Was the victim, whose body was found after a heated exchange with the host, shot in an act of self-defense? If so, why did the host flee, and if not, what drove him to murder?”

CURRENT GIVEAWAYS

Listed on the homepage

List of books I can swap with yours

PLANS FOR FEBRUARY

📚 Read as many Japanese literature as I can!

📚 Read as much as I can for the #Pondathon and my #TeamXiaolong

📚 Update my Links page!

Eiffel Tower Orange

HAVE YOU READ
OR ARE YOU PLANNING TO READ
ANY OF THESE?
WHAT ARE YOUR READING PLANS FOR FEBRUARY?

 

Save

Bout of Books 27

BOUT OF BOOKS 27

Bout of Books 27

#boutofbooks

Click on the logo to join the fun!

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized
by Amanda Shofner and Kelly Rubidoux Apple.
It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 6th
and runs through Sunday, January 12th in whatever time zone you are in.
Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, Twitter chats, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional.
For all Bout of Books 27 information and updates,
be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. 
– From the Bout of Books team

I’m hesitating about doing Bout of Books this time, because my Church follows the Julian calendar. Hence, I will have a three hour Vigils prayer service on January 6 to prepare for the Feast of the Nativity of Christ, aka as Christmas. And Church again on the morning of the 7th for Nativity Divine Liturgy (aka as Mass by the Roman Catholics), and a big party on the evening of January 7th. So I’ll basically won’t be able to read on the 6th and 7th.

So I’m lowering my goal to 575 pages. 

And I will organize a giveaway!

Here are the books I plan to read from. Some I’m currently reading.

  1. Theological Territories, by David Bentley Hart
  2. Sanshiro, by Natsume Soseki
  3. The Ten Loves of Mr Nishino, by Hiromi Kawakami
  4. Audiobook: The Book of Tea, by Kakuzo Hokakura
  5. Audiobook: The Book of Genesis
  6. Audiobook: The Red House Mystery, by A. A. Milne

SCHEDULE

Challenges

**This is the overall list for the challenges offered during Bout of Books 26. Make sure you check the blog each day of the read-a-thon for instructions and details on how to complete the daily challenges**

Monday 1/6
Introduce Yourself #insixwords

Tuesday 1/7
Share Your 2020 Reading Goals

Wednesday 1/8
Bookish Matchmaking

Thursday 1/9
Recreate the Scene

Friday 1/10
The One with the Books in It!

Saturday 1/11
If This, Then That

Sunday 1/12
Stretch Goal

Twitter Chats
(chats last approximately one hour)
TZC = Time Zone Conversion

Monday: 8pm CST (TZC)
Saturday: 10am CST (TZC)

Click on the logo to sign up

Save

The top 8 books to read in January 2020

Here are

The top 8 books
I plan to read in January 2020

Click on the covers to know more

CURRENTLY READING

  Perfect Little Children

 

Perfect Little Children
Received for review through Edelweiss
Release date: February 4, by William Morrow
After The Mystery of Three Quarters, I’m eager to read Hannah’s latest book.

“All Beth has to do is drive her son to his Under-14s away match, watch him play, and bring him home.
Just because she knows her ex-best friend lives near the football ground, that doesn’t mean she has to drive past her house and try to catch a glimpse of her. Why would Beth do that, and risk dredging up painful memories? She hasn’t seen Flora for twelve years. She doesn’t want to see her today, or ever again.
But she can’t resist. She parks outside the open gates of Newnham House, watches from across the road as Flora and her children Thomas and Emily step out of the car. Except… There’s something terribly wrong. Flora looks the same, only older. As Beth would have expected. It’s the children. Twelve years ago, Thomas and Emily were five and three years old. Today, they look precisely as they did then.
They are still five and three. They are Thomas and Emily without a doubt – Hilary hears Flora call them by their names – but they haven’t changed at all.
They are no taller, no older… Why haven’t they grown?”

Crenshaw
As mentioned yesterday in my December wrap-up, I’m in a Katherine Apllegate binge.
“In her first novel since winning the Newbery Medal, Katherine Applegate delivers an unforgettable and magical story about family, friendship, and resilience.
Jackson and his family have fallen on hard times. There’s no more money for rent. And not much for food, either. His parents, his little sister, and their dog may have to live in their minivan. Again.
Crenshaw is a cat. He’s large, he’s outspoken, and he’s imaginary. He has come back into Jackson’s life to help him. But is an imaginary friend enough to save this family from losing everything?
Beloved author Katherine Applegate proves in unexpected ways that friends matter, whether real or imaginary.”

Theological Territories: A David Bentley Hart Digest
Received for review through Edelweiss
Release date: April 15, by University of Notre Dame Press

I haven’t read any collection of theological essays for  while. I discovered this Orthodox author 15 years ago, with The Doors of the Sea: Where Was God in the Tsunami?, so I was happily surprised to find his latest available through Edelweiss, it’s rather unusual to find Orthodox authors there!

READING NEXT

Sanshiro The Ten loves of Mr Nishino

Inhabitation

This will be a Japanese binge, for the Japanese Literature Challenge #13.
Sanshiro (1908) is also what I got for The Classics Spin #22.
“One of Soseki’s most beloved works of fiction, the novel depicts the 23-year-old Sanshiro leaving the sleepy countryside for the first time in his life to experience the constantly moving ‘real world’ of Tokyo, its women and university. In the subtle tension between our appreciation of Soseki’s lively humour and our awareness of Sanshiro’s doomed innocence, the novel comes to life. Sanshiro is also penetrating social and cultural commentary.”

The Ten Loves of Mr Nishino and Inhabitation are books I got through Edelweiss last year!!

And if I need more titles, it will be more Japanese titles.

CURRENT AND NEXT AUDIOBOOKS

The Red House Mystery

The Book of Tea (1906)
Listening both for The Classics Club and for the Japanese Literature Challenge.
“That a nation should construct one of its most resonant national ceremonies round a cup of tea will surely strike a chord of sympathy with at least some readers of this review. To many foreigners, nothing is so quintessentially Japanese as the tea ceremony–more properly, “the way of tea”–with its austerity, its extravagantly minimalist stylization, and its concentration of extreme subtleties of meaning into the simplest of actions. The Book of Tea is something of a curiosity: written in English by a Japanese scholar (and issued here in bilingual form), it was first published in 1906, in the wake of the naval victory over Russia with which Japan asserted its rapidly acquired status as a world-class military power. It was a peak moment of Westernization within Japan. Clearly, behind the publication was an agenda, or at least a mission to explain. Around its account of the ceremony, The Book of Tea folds an explication of the philosophy, first Taoist, later Zen Buddhist, that informs its oblique celebration of simplicity and directness–what Okakura calls, in a telling phrase, “moral geometry.”

The Red House Mystery (1922)
Will be listening for The Classics Club
“The creator of such beloved storybook characters for children as Winnie-the-Pooh, Piglet, and Eeyore, A. A. Milne was also the author of numerous dramas, essays, and novels for adults — among them, this droll and finely crafted whodunit.
In it, Milne takes readers to the Red House, a comfortable residence in the placid English countryside that is the bachelor home of Mr. Mark Ablett. While visiting this cozy retreat, amateur detective Anthony Gillingham and his chum, Bill Beverley, investigate their genial host’s disappearance and its connection with a mysterious shooting. Was the victim, whose body was found after a heated exchange with the host, shot in an act of self-defense? If so, why did the host flee, and if not, what drove him to murder?”

CURRENT GIVEAWAYS

Listed on the homepage

List of books I can swap with yours

PLANS FOR JANUARY

📚 Post my fun end of the year stats, and do another special on best of the decade!

📚 As part of 2020 resolutions, I plan to do a weekly recap where I will write short reviews of books I finished that week – keeping my longer review format only for books received for review

📚 As I enjoy more and more audiobooks, I finally realized I should listen to the Old Testament. So I’ll be starting that in January.

Eiffel Tower Orange

HAVE YOU READ
OR ARE YOU PLANNING TO READ
ANY OF THESE?
WHAT ARE YOUR READING PLANS FOR JANUARY?
ANY SPECIAL READING RESOLUTION FOR 2020? 

Save