The Classics Club: The Classics Spin #28



The Classics Club

The Classics Spin #28

Time for a new spin!

At your blog, before Sunday, October 17th, create a post to list your choice of any twenty books that remain “to be read” on your Classics Club list.

On Sunday October 17, we’ll post a number from 1 through 20. The challenge is to read whatever book falls under that number on your Spin List by December 12, 2021.

Here are 20 titles I have selected from my 3rd list of 50 classics.
4 of the following titles are nonfiction.
9 are mysteries.

1 Xavier de Maistre Voyage Autour de Ma Chambre (1794)
2 Edmond Rostand Cyrano de Bergerac (1897) = reread
3 Robert Walser Jakob von Gunten (1909)
4 A. A. Milne The Red House Mystery (1922)
5 Freeman Wills Crofts Inspector French’s Greatest Case (1924)
6 Dorothy L. Sayers* Clouds of Witness (1926)
7 Stefan Zweig Confusion (1927)
8 Josephine Tey* The Man in the Queue (1929)
9 Virginia Woolf* A Room of One’s Own (1929)
10 Edmund Wilson Axel’s Castle: A Study of the Imaginative Literature of 1870-1930 (1931)
11 George Orwell Down and Out in Paris and London (1933)
12 Ngaio Marsh* A Man Lay Dead (1934)
13 Rex Stout Fer-de-Lance (1934)
14 Charles Williams Descent into Hell (1937)
15 Eric Ambler Epitaph for a Spy (1938)
16 Raymond Chandler The Big Sleep (1939)
17 Cornell Woolrich The Bride Wore Black (1940)
18 Adolfo Bioy Casares The Invention of Morel (1940)
19 Italo Calvino The Baron in the Trees
20 Virginia Woolf To the Lighthouse



2018: June-July-August wrap-up

June-July-August 2018 wrap-up

I can’t believe I have not posted a summary for 3 months. End of June I was just back from vacation and had a zillion other things to do. Then end of July was my husband’s open-heart surgery, so no time for blogging either. Thanks for everyone who expressed their support through social media. It’s amazing to feel help from so many people we have not even met. He’s now on the road to full recovery.

So here are the books I read these past 3 months.
Not tons. I’m far behind my usual numbers. One reason being I started and DNFed quite a few books that had been on my shelves for far too long. They may have been good, but I was not in the mood for these.

But I have done many more translations – I’m mostly the one translating posting in English here (yes, it’s nonfiction, so I translate from French-English for a change): when I have to face some ordeals, I’m in better mental health if I make my brain work actively; reading is not enough. I have always noticed that in my life, and studies have always been a great safety net.

Not sure if this is related, but these days, I also spend more time learning languages – hence less time for reading.
You may have noticed here how much I enjoy Calvino. One of my dreams would be to read him in Italian. So after starting-abandoning-restarting so many times, I’m finally doing it a bit everyday. I use Duolingo and enjoy it a lot. I’m currently studying prepositions, which is the most challenging for me. Otherwise, Italian is close enough to French, Spanish, and Latin, so not really a big deal.

While I was at it, I thought it might be good to review my Spanish. I can still read and listen to it pretty easily, but I’d like to be more comfortable again to speak it.

AND, jamais deux sans trois, three is a charm, I have restarted learning Russian – lots of members of my Orthodox Church speak Russian. NOW, that’s a bit more challenging, and I can actually FEEL physically my head is working when I study it. I love working with other alphabets (I taught myself Biblical Hebrew and Koine Greek), it’s like a game. Now it’s super easy to turn your American keyboard into any alphabet, so I just clicked on each key to figure out where each Russian letter was on my keyboard. I just need to keep the eyes on that list, et voilà ! Duoligo does a great job to teach you progressively each letter of the alphabet, starting with words that sound the same in English, such as radio, motor, sweater, Mama, Papa, taxi, circus, or funny things such as: том – тим там ? = Tom, is Tim there?

So, is this wrap-up coming or not? ok ok, here it is! The above might actually be a sign of a slight change in the format of this blog, we’ll see.

What I read in June-July-August:

13 books:
9 in print and 4 in audio 
with 2,850 pages, an average of 30 pages/day
4 in audio
with 34H14, an average of 22 mn/day

7 in mystery

  1. Sans feu ni lieu, by Fred Vargas – audio in French

  2. Whose Body?, by Dorothy L. Sayers – audio, for Classic Club

  3. Coffin Road, by Peter May

  4. Alex Rider: Stormbreaker, by Anthony Horowitz

  5. Ceux qui vont mourir te saluent, by Fred Vargas – audio in French

  6. The Mystery of Three Quarters, by Sophie Hannah – ebook, for review

  7. Le temps est assassin, by Michel Bussi  – audio in French

3 in nonfiction:

  1. Conan Doyle for the Defense, by Margalit Fox – ebook, for review

  2. Elder Sebastian of Optina, by Tatiana Torstensen

  3. Journal de mon voyage d’Amérique, by Louis-Philippe – in French

2 in historical fiction:

  1. The Romanov Empress, by CW Gortner  – ebook, for review

  2. Defy the Night, by Heather and Lydian Munn

1 in literary fiction:

  1. Smoking Kills, by Antoine Laurain – for review


My favorites in June – July – August

  Coffin Road Conan Doyle for the Defense

Reading Challenges recap

Classics Club: 24/50 (until end of 2020) or 36/62!
The 2018 TBR Pile Challenge: 3/12, but not none reviewed yet !!
Where Are You Reading?: 21/50 – to be finished in ??

Total of books read in 2018= 40/100

Number of books added to my TBR these last 3 months= 24

Most popular book review these last 3 months

Something in the water

click on the cover to access my review.

Most popular post these last 3 months
– non book review –

Born a Crime
chapters 1-3 read-along at
Book Bloggers International

Book blog that brought me
most traffic these past 3 months

Edith’s Miscellany

Top commenters of the month

Kristyn at Reading to Unwind

Karen at Booker Talk

Freda @Fredalicious

Blog milestones

1,814 posts
over 4,490 subscribers
over 158,400 hits

Plans for September

Catch up with reviewing, ah!! By the way, we have a great giveaway on France Book Tours!


Come back on Monday
to see the books I plan to read in September!

Eiffel Tower OrangeEiffel Tower OrangeEiffel Tower Orange

How was YOUR month of  August?

Month in Review

Kathryn at The Book Date
has created a Month In Review meme
I’ll now be linking my monthly recap posts
Thanks Kathryn, great idea!

The Classics Club: The Classics Spin #17



The Classics Club

The Classics Spin #17

Time for a new spin!

At your blog, before next Friday, March 9, create a post to list your choice of any twenty books that remain “to be read” on your Classics Club list.

This is your Spin List. You have to read one of these twenty books by the end of the year. Try to challenge yourself. For example, you could list five Classics Club books you are dreading/hesitant to read, five you can’t WAIT to read, five you are neutral about, and five free choice (favorite author, re-reads, ancients — whatever you choose.)

On Friday, we’ll post a number from 1 through 20. The challenge is to read whatever book falls under that number on your Spin List, by April 30. We’ll check in here in May to see who made it the whole way and finished their spin book!

So here are my 20 books:

  1. Whose Body? by Dorothy L. Sayers
  2. The Moonstone, by Wilkie Collins
  3. The Face of Another, by Kobo Abe
  4. The Baron in the Trees, by Italo Calvino
  5. Solaris, by Stanislas Lem
  6. Childhood’s End, by Arthur C. Clarke
  7. Fantômas, by Marcel Allain
  8. A Streetcar Named Desire, by Tennessee Williams
  9. The Sound and the Fury, by William Faulkner
  10. Tender is the Night, by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  11. Travels With Charley, by John Steinbeck
  12. A Moveable Feast, by Ernest Hemingway
  13. To the Lighthouse, by Virginia Woolf
  14. Oblomov, by Ivan Goncharov
  15. Confusion, by Stefan Zweig
  16. Gaspard, Melchior & Balthazar, by Michel Tournier
  17. We, by Yevgeny Zamyatin
  18. Kusamakura, by Natsume Soseki
  19. The Dream  of the Red Chamber, by Cao Xueqin
  20. Confusion, by Stefan Zweig