Six degrees of separation: from lottery to tides


Six degrees of separation:
from lottery to tides

Time for another quirky variation on this meme.

Using my own rules for this fun meme hosted by Kate at Booksaremyfavouriteandbest (see there the origin of the meme and how it works – posted the first Saturday of every month).

Here are my own quirky rules:

1. Use your list of books on Goodreads
2. Take the first word of the title (or in the subtitle) offered and find another title with that word in it – see the titles below the images to fully understand, as often the word could be in the second part of the title
3. Then use the first word of THAT title to find your text title
4. Or the second if the title starts with the same word, or you are stuck

Click on the covers 
links will send you to my review or to the relevant Goodreads page

  the-lottery  dining with proust

  Joie de vivre  The Secret World of Arrietty

  The World Between Two Covers  The House Between Tides


1.  The Lottery, by Shirley Jackson

For once, I have read the first book we are supposed to start with.

VERDICT from my review:
Tense writing, most efficient for a totally unexpected outcome.

(You can read my full review by clicking on the book cover)

2. Dining with Marcel Proust: A Practical Guide to French Cuisine of the Belle Epoque, by Shirley King

As I haven’t read any other book with the word “lottery” in it, I couldn’t follow my usual quirky rules. I debated and finally decided to go with another Shirley for the author of the second book.

This book is so cool! It’s about all the food and dishes mentioned in Proust, in In Search of Lost Time of course, but other books as well.

3. Joie de Vivre: Secrets of Wining, Dining, and Romancing Like the French, by Harriet Welty Rochefort

I haven’t yet read this one, it has been collecting dust for a while on my French shelf. Not sure why, as it does look so good.

“An engaging exploration of the style that permeates all things French—perfect for anyone looking to achieve that classic French flair”

4. The Secret World of Arrietty, by Hayao Miyazaki

Sad, but gorgeous art, so detailed, so good with nature, colors. Actually a Film Comic Adaptation of the amazing Hayao Miyazaki (Studio Ghibli)

“Arrietty isn’t your ordinary fourteen-year-old girl—she small enough to make her home under the floorboards of a typical house, “borrowing” what she and her family needs from the giants in whose shadows they live. A young boy named Sho befriends Arrietty, but when adults discover the Borrowers, Arrietty and Sho must work together to save her family.”

5. The World Between Two Covers, by Ann Morgan

VERDICT from my review:
Superb fresco on world literature today. A must have reference for all interested in literature and cultural diversity. Leave the familiar, open yourself to new horizons through books.

6. The House Between Tides, by Sarah Maine

VERDICT from my review:
A very enjoyable atmospheric novel, spanning over a few generations, rich in landscape descriptions and suspense, that will delight lovers of Kate Morton’s books.



Visit other chains here



2021: July wrap-up


My #20BooksofSummer21 is doing well. In fact, I have already read 21 books, but only 5 from my original list (and I had to DNF one from that list). Hopefully, I can read from this list by the end of August.
And actually, most important for me, I have managed to catch up with a few reviews (see links below), on books I received for review in 2019-2021, that I read and even enjoyed a lot, but never took time to review!! I still have 5 books to review that I read last year, and I hope I can catch up with those during this last month of Summer.

July has my best statistics for 2021 so far, as for number of pages read per day.

📚 Here is what I read in July:

14 books:
10 in print 
with 2,634 pages, a daily average of 84 pages/day
4 in audio
= 24H54
, a daily average of 52 minutes

5 in mystery:

  1. Evil Under the Sun (Hercule Poirot #24), by Agatha Christie
  2. Five Little Pigs (Hercule Poirot #25), by Agatha Christie
  3. The Hollow, (Hercule Poirot #26), by Agatha Christie – these first 3 were as audiobooks, for The Classics Club
  4. Impact, by Olivier Norek – French audiobook
  5. When All Light Fails, by Randall Silvis – ebook received for review

4 in nonfiction:

  1. The Code Breaker, by Walter Isaacson – won through Goodreads
  2. Languages of Truth, by Salman Rushdie – ebook received for review
  3. Living With a Dead Language, by Ann Patty
  4. Sur la lecture [On Reading], by Marcel Proust – for The Classics Club

2 in poetry:

  1. The Lost Spells, by Robert MacFarlane & Jackie Morris
  2. Alphabet, by Paul Valéry – French poetry in prose for The Classics Club

2 as graphic novels:

  1. The Apothecary Diaries, vol.2, by Natsu Hyuuga – manga, historical novel, for the Books in Translation Challenge
  2. Cats of the Louvre, by Taiyo Matsumoto – fantasy, for the Books in Translation Challenge

1 in literary fiction:

  1. Les Revenentes et autres lipogrammes, by Georges Perec – French ebook


    The Code Breaker  The Lost Spells


Classics Club: 65/137 (from November 2020-until November 2025)
Japanese Literature Challenge: 12 books
#20BooksofSummer21: 21/20 books
Total of books read in 2021 = 97/120 (80%)

Number of books added to my TBR this past month = 21


  People Like Them Project Hail Mary

If You Cross the River


The open giveaways are on my homepage

Books available for swapping


Posted on my homepage

And we offer a Book Box!
And monthly raffle with a Newsletter
(see sample with link to sign up)


People Like Them

click on the cover to access my review


The top 7 books to read in July 2021


The Classics Club
please go visit, there are a lot of good things there!
You might also consider joining this awesome community


Marianne at Let’s Read

Greg at Book Haven
please go and visit them,
they have great book blogs


2,362 posts
over 5,480 followers
over 224,300 hits


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

📚 📚 📚

How was YOUR month of July?

Nicole at Feed Your Fiction Addiction
has created a Month In Review meme
where you can link your monthly recap posts
Thanks Nicole!



It’s so Classic Book tag

it's so classic blog party

In August, there was a Classics book tag going around the blogosphere. I didn’t participate at the time. But then, I saw Brona’s post, and she tagged whoever wanted to participate.
As I recently finished reading my
first list of 50 books for The Classics Club, I thought I would use these questions to do some type of recap.
So I’m exclusively considering these 50 books to answer the following questions.
Which means that I’ll probably have different answers if I do it again (I might) when I’m done with my 2nd list of 50 titles.
I’m also not considering all the other classics I read before joining The Classics Club.


What is one classic that hasn’t been made into a movie yet, but really needs to?

I think it would be neat to make a movie on Travels with Charley. It would be a great piece of Americana. I’d see Robert Duvall as a great John Steinbeck.

What draws you to classics?

DonQuixoteMy thinking is that if we have not stopped reading these books along the years and the centuries, it means they have a message or value for all ages, and so for mine as well. So I’m curious to see what it could be.
Also, incidentally, I really love the online community built around the classics, especially through The Classics Club. It’s really great that so many people from many countries can interact on these treasures of humanity.
I’m thinking for instance of Don Quixote, and the 3 readalongs organized around it this year that I know of.
Be sure to visit also this amazing interview with Silvia of this work – and most insightful comments on my and her post.

What is an underrated classic?

Arsene LupinMaybe a book that is on the verge of being forgotten, a bit like an endangered species, and not too many people have read it, for a reason or another. But when you read it, you realize its content can definitely be understood and is meaningful for us today.
I could mention here Arsène Lupin, not that well known in English speaking circles. Yet, it is a seminal series for the mystery genres, and offers a unique perspective on a life of crime, very different from the current tendency of gruesome and violent thrillers.

What is one classic that you didn’t expect to love, but ended up loving anyway?

A Moveable FeastI don’t remember fondly, to say the least, the various novels by Hemingway I read. But so many readers were talking about A Moveable Feast, that I was intrigued and thought I should give it a try, especially as it is set in my native country!
I was probably also feeling ashamed I had never read it. But I approached it with fear and trembling, because of my past experience with this author. Yet, I loved the book very much. It definitely helped it was nonfiction actually. I loved the description and evocation of the place and time, plus the various people we meet in it. Beautiful prose!

What is your most favorite and least favorite classics?

Charlotte's WebThis is a very difficult question, even if I only consider here these 50 titles!
My most favorite of these 50 titles might well be Charlotte’s Web, for its beautiful prose and message. And I love so much the last line! Look at my review if you forgot that line. But obviously, there are tons of other titles I really enjoyed in this list.

As for the one I liked least, I’m also going to choose a children’s book. I was very disappointed by The Secret of the Old Clock, even though I was told I should appreciate the fact that this genre was almost revolutionary at the time. I’m not too sure I read it as a kid in France, so if I read it, apparently it didn’t impress me either at the time. Back then, I read the series by Enid Blyton, and loved it a lot!

What is your favorite character from a classic? Or if that is too hard, one is your favorite classic character trope (e.g. strong and silent, quiet sidekick, etc.)

Francie, in A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I love her outlook on life, and how important books are in her life.

What’s a popular classic that you felt wasn’t actually that great?

Whose Body? by Dorothy Sayers. I was rather disappointed, I didn’t like the social aspect of it. But I’m intrigued that the series is so popular, so I’ll give it another chance and plan to read volume 2.

Who is your favorite classic author?

I’m going to say Marcel Proust. Reading his whole In Search of Lost Time was a fantastic experience. It is so rich! And even if there are some boring passages, like an interminable meal lasting 50 pages or more, what’s really neat with Proust is that suddenly, when you are almost ready to give up, you bump into a real gem of a sentence. So don’t give up!
Actually the very last book is beautiful, with lots of fascinating pages on the art of writing. I now understand why a friend of mine starts reading it again when she’s done, I think she’s read it all 4 or 5 times. If I were younger, I would read it again, as there are so many connections between the different books that you cannot possibly see when you read it only once.

In your opinion, what makes a classic a classic?

I basically answered this question at the beginning. I think it’s a book with a universal message, universal as far as location and time. That whatever culture it was written in, it can apply to all. And whatever time it was created in, it is still meaning today, because it deals with some things that are very deep in our human psyche and life experience.

Relating to newer books, what attributes does a book need to have in order to be worthy of the title “classic”?

the-martian-chroniclesI would say the same as I answered in the previous question.
This could apply for instance to science-fiction classics, (I read The Martian Chronicles; We; Solaris) as they deal with our deep human need for connection with others, with our deep need to prove that we are not alone out there, as Arthur C. Clarke beautifully highlights in Childhood’s End, which I recently listened to (as my first book for my second list of 50 titles!).

Bonus question: Is there a classic you don’t seem to understand?

Yes, I have no clue what C. S. Lewis is really talking about in Till We Have Faces, even though I had a whole discussion with a reading group at my church on this book.


That’s it. Let me know
if you were surprised by some of my answers.

If you feel tempted by these questions,
please post your answers and give me your link.
I’m curious to see what YOU think