Sunday Post #41 – 3/7/2021

Sunday Post

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by
Kimba @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
It’s a chance to share news.
A post to recap the past week on your blog,
showcase books and things we have received.
Share news about what is coming up
on your blog
for the week ahead.
See rules here: Sunday Post Meme

*** 

This post also counts for

Sunday Salon    Stacking the Shelves  Mailbox Monday2

 It's Monday! What Are You Reading2  IMWAYR  WWW Wednesdays 2

#SundayPost #SundaySalon
#StackingTheShelves #MailboxMonday
#itsmonday #IMWAYR
#WWWWednesday #WWWWednesdays

Click on the logos to join the memes,
and on the book covers to access synopsis or review

Spring is springing in Chicagoland. I spent some nice time yesterday afternoon in our sunny yard, which aloud me to finish a novel.
Then thus energized, I did a lot of cleaning around the house. Mind you, this was just a pretext to be able to finish my audiobook!

📚 JUST READ / LISTENED TO 🎧

 

  Kusamakura Cards on the Table

📚 Kusamakura, by Natsume Soseki
Published in 1906
Read for the Japanese Literature Challenge, the Classics Club, and the Books in Translation Challenge.

This was a very beautiful book, so I will do a separate review post, with lots of excerpts.

🎧 Cards on the Table, by Agatha Christie (Hercule Poirot #15)
Published in 1936
Listened to for the Classics Club, and personal project to listen to all of HP.

I had no memory at all of seeing this episode in the TV series, so it was a total surprise. And surprise you have, to the end, in this very clever plot. Many times all along, you get information about who did what, and you think, hmm, this was a great idea, but then shortly after, you realize this was just one more red herring, and revelation after revelation gets even deeper, and more clever.
It felt like reading a mystery with a matryoshka effect – I’m referring to these nestling Russian dolls, with one murder within a murder within a murder.
I really don’t remember reading anything like this, and I now understand why several bloggers I have read recently said this was one of their favorite stories by Agatha Christie.
This is the first mystery in this series with Ariadne Oliver.
I’m glad the audiobook was narrated by Hugh Fraser, masterful as always at doing all the different characters.

“A flamboyant party host is murdered in full view of a roomful of bridge players… Mr Shaitana was famous as a flamboyant party host. Nevertheless, he was a man of whom everybody was a little afraid. So, when he boasted to Poirot that he considered murder an art form, the detective had some reservations about accepting a party invitation to view Shaitana’s private collection. Indeed, what began as an absorbing evening of bridge was to turn into a more dangerous game altogether…”

🎧 I also listened to 2 Biblical books, as part of my project to listen to the whole Bible:
the Book of the Song of Songs
the Book of Wisdom

📚 CURRENTLY READING/LISTENING TO 🎧

  The Miner Dumb Witness

📚 The Miner, by Natsume Soseki
Published in 1908
Reading for the Japanese Literature Challenge, the Classics Club, and the Books in Translation Challenge.

I couldn’t find it in English, so I’m actually reading a French translation. The more I read Soseki, seven books so far, the more I am amazed by the diversity of his style and content.

“The Miner is the most daringly experimental and least well known novel of the great Meiji novelist Natsume Soseki (1867-1916). Written in 1908, it is an absurdist novel about the indeterminate nature of human personality, which in many respects anticipates the work of Joyce and Beckett. Virtually devoid of plot and characterization, it unfolds entirely within the mind of the unnamed protagonist. Focusing on a young man whose love life has fallen to pieces, The Miner follows him as he flees from Tokyo, is picked up by a procurer of cheap labor for a copper mine, and then travels toward – and finally burrows into the depths of – the mine where he hopes to find oblivion. The young man reflects at length on nearly every thought and perception he experiences along the way, in terms of what the experience means to him at the time and in retrospect as a mature adult narrating the tale. The narrator concludes that there is no such thing as human character, and the many passages in which he ruminates on the nature of personality constitute the theoretical core of the book. The intellectual distancing carries over into the style of writing as well, and instead of a tragedy of alienation, we find here an absurdist – truly absurd and comical – allegory of descent into the psyche.”

🎧 Dumb Witness, by Agatha Christie (Hercule Poirot #16)
Published in 1937
Listening to for the Classics Club, and personal project to listen to all of HP.

“Everyone blamed Emily’s accident on a rubber ball left on the stairs by her frisky terrier. But the more she thought about her fall, the more convinced she became that one of her relatives was trying to kill her. On April 17th she wrote her suspicions in a letter to Hercule Poirot. Mysteriously he didn’t receive the letter until June 28th… by which time Emily was already dead.”

I am still reading the two books I presented last Sunday:

📚 Dictionnaire amoureux du polar, by Pierre Lemaitre
Published on October 22, 2020

📚 The Future of Buildings, Transportation, and Power, 
by Roger Duncan and Michael E. Webber
Published in July 2020

🎧And I am listening to the Ecclesiasticus.

📚 BOOK UP NEXT 📚

 

To the Spring Equinox and Beyond

📚 To the Spring Equinox and Beyond, by Natsume Soseki
Published in 1910
Will be reading for the Japanese Literature Challenge, the Classics Club, and the Books in Translation Challenge.

“Legendary Japanese novelist Soseki Natsume dissects the human personality in all its complexity in this unforgettable narrative. Keitaro, a recent college graduate, lives a life intertwined with several other characters, each carrying their own emotional baggage. Romantic, practical, and philosophical themes enable Soseki to explore the very meaning of life.”

📚 LAST 2 BOOKS ADDED TO MY GOODREADS TBR 📚

    Once There Were Wolves Miss Pym Disposes

📚 Once There Were Wolves, by Charlotte McConaghy
Expected publication: August 3rd 2021 by Flatiron Books

I thoroughly enjoyed the author’s first novel, Migrations, so I am curious about this one, also to do with the natural world.

“From bestselling author Charlotte McConaghy, Once There Were Wolves is a novel about a scientist reintroducing wolves to the Scottish Highlands, and the secrets that begin to catch up to her when a local farmer goes missing.
Inti Flynn arrives in Scotland with a singular purpose: to reintroduce wolves into the Highlands. Her efforts to rewild the dying landscape, however, are met with fierce opposition from the locals, who fear for their safety and way of life.
When a farmer is mauled to death, Inti decides to bury the evidence, unable to believe her wolves could be responsible. But if the wolves didn’t make the kill, is something more sinister at play? And will it happen again? Over the course of a cold year, Inti will take desperate action to save the creatures she loves, and, perhaps, save herself along the way–if she isn’t consumed by a wild that was once her refuge.
Once There Were Wolves is a story of violence and tenderness, about the healing power of nature and the rewilding of our spirits in a world that has lost so much.”

📚 Miss Pym Disposes, by Josephine Tey
Published in 1946

I enjoy classic mysteries, and yet I haven’t read this author yet!

“To Lucy Pym, author of a best-seller on Psychology, the atmosphere at the college where she is lecturing is heavy with tension. Beneath the so normal surface run sinister undercurrents of rivalry and jealousy. Then comes tragedy. An accident? Or is it murder? Respectable, law-abiding Miss Pym discovers some vital evidence – but should she reveal it?”

📚 BOOKS RECEIVED THIS PAST WEEK 📚

None, but I was one of the three winners at my public library, for having read and reviewed a book suggested for me by the staff: The Romanov Sisters.
The gift were gift cards for purchase in local stores of my city. Will be nice for groceries.

INTERESTING LINKS FOUND THIS WEEK

My inspiration to add this section comes from
Book Jotter‘s posts called “Winding Up the Week”.

ABOUT BOOKS AND CATS:
TEN FELINE BOOK TITLES THAT MADE ME LAUGH OUT LOUD
 

THIS PAST WEEK ON
WORDS AND PEACE
MYRTLE SKETE
and FRANCE BOOK TOURS

📚 Book of the month giveaway 
Victorine
📚 Book available for free this month, to review at your own pace!
L'Origine
📚
Review copies available for upcoming book tours:
Victorine  Madeleine Last French Casquette Bride in New Orleans

📚 Subscribe to my Newsletter, and win a book each month!
Here is a sample, with link for subscription at the bottom
📚 Books available for swapping

COMING UP ON
WORDS AND PEACE
MYRTLE SKETE
FRANCE BOOK TOURS

  • A few reviews I hope.
  • I will also post two more virtual book tours!

HOW WAS YOUR WEEK?

Nonfiction November 2020: Book Pairings

nonficnov2020

Click on the logo to see the detailed schedule
#nonficnov

Book Pairings

hosted by Julz of Julz Reads

This week, pair up a nonfiction book with a fiction title.
It can be a “If you loved this book, read this!”
or just two titles that you think would go well together.
Maybe it’s a historical novel and you’d like to get the real history
by reading a nonfiction version of the story.

Today, I’m offering you 3 novels paired with 3 nonfiction books I read this year

Click on the covers to get more details

BOOK PAIRING #1

BIRDS

Vesper Flights Migrations

Migrations:
VERDICT: Both beautiful and heart-wrenching. And of course, a must for all birders.
Franny, from Galway, Ireland, knows that it’s probably the last time the Arctic Terns are migrating, so she decided to follow and accompany them on their last journey.
She goes to Greenland, where the bird starts its migration, and manages to convince Captain Ennis Malone to accept her on his shipping boat The Saghani. His crew has had a hard time finding fish, also because of global warming and all we have done to our planet, but Franny is a scientist and knows that the Arctic Tern adjusts its route to where they can find fish to eat. So that should work, right?
Things get complicated…

BOOK PAIRING #2

MARIE-ANTOINETTE

 Marie Antoinette's World MARIE antoinette

Becoming Marie-Antoinette:
The book is excellent at describing the royal families and all the petty details of everyday life, from the rising to the preparation for the night;  at showing what it would have taken to become the queen of France, lots of advantages maybe, but also lots of sacrifices.

BOOK PAIRING #3

TEA

 The Book of Tea broken teaglass

The Broken Teaglass:
Take words, a job with words and dictionaries, and a good mystery, well, how could I resist that!
A neat, smart, very enjoyable and quick read.

HAVE YOU READ ANY OF THESE?
WOULD YOU HAVE ANOTHER
BOOK PAIRING RELATED TO BIRDS OR TEA?

Recap: 20 Books of Summer 2020

20 books of summer

Once again, 746books.com organized a special challenge:

20 Books of Summer
June 1-August 31

Summer is already over so it’s time to see how it went for this challenge.

I’m happy with the amount of books I read:
I reached 20 books on July 28, and ended up reading 28 books.
These were not necessarily the 20 I had lined up, I had to adjust to urgent books coming my way for review.
Unfortunately, I only reviewed 6 of these.

And I was planning to connect with participants of this challenge, which I didn’t do much at all, by lack of time.

Out of these 28, 15 books were in print, and 13 in audio (6 of these were Bible books)
12 were mysteries/thrillers

Books I especially liked?:
scratch that, there are too many!!

I will just highlight four books that were different, types of revelations:

  Or What You Will If You Cross the River

Or What You Will:
An amazing author, totally new to me.
Great structure, so many references
VERDICT: Unique fantasy love letter to the Renaissance. Luscious!
See my review, with excerpts

If You Cross The River:
I got this in 2019, why did I wait so long to read it?
Incredible writing. I devoured it in no time

  Migrations Killer Come Back to Me

Migrations:
wow, certainly one of my favorites of the year so far.
VERDICT: Both beautiful and heart-wrenching. And of course, a must for all birders.
See my review, with pictures and data

Killer, Come Back to Me
BIG revelation, I didn’t even know he had written crime fiction. Did you?
And he is so so good at it!

So here is the file with my 28 books.

Did you participate?
What was your favorite book this Summer?