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The Raw Shark Texts de Steven Hall

The Raw Shark Texts (edição: 2007)

de Steven Hall (Autor)

MembrosResenhasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaConversas / Menções
2,3811094,647 (3.73)1 / 128
Eric Sanderson wakes up in a place he doesn't recognise, unable to remember who he is. Attacked by a force he cannot see and confronted with memories he cannot ignore, Eric discovers he is being hunted by a psychic predator, a shark. This creature may exist only in his mind, but it soon starts making some very real appearances in his world.… (mais)
Título:The Raw Shark Texts
Autores:Steven Hall (Autor)
Informação:Canongate Books (2007), Edition: First American Edition, 427 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca

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The Raw Shark Texts de Steven Hall


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Another book about lost memory. My good friend and avid reader Rod Pedersen couldn't quite give this the thumbs up but I will. A bit sophomoric and "boyish" but a fun adventure. ( )
  agdesilva | Feb 15, 2021 |
This book would have made a delightful and intense short story had it ended anywhere before Scout shows up. The rest is garbage. ( )
  MysteryDough | Nov 29, 2020 |
Short, interesting, excellent and a bit weird. to say much more would ruin the mystery! ( )
  drwilko | Nov 17, 2020 |
Mark's Reading Place: Chapter Fourteen
This is a continuation of the topic Mark's Reading Place: Chapter Thirteen.

75 Books Challenge for 2020
250 messages | Stop starring this topicUnstar this topic | ignore Ignore topic | downJump to bottom (0 unread)
1msf59Edited: Aug 10, 6:03am Top

-Local forest preserve, which has quickly become a favorite.

^Pileated Woodpecker (^Seen at the above location)

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2msf59Edited: Aug 13, 5:32pm Top




55) Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen 3.7 stars (audio)
56) A Thread of Grace by Mary Doria Russell 4.8 stars
57) At Home with Disquiet by Erin Wilson 3.6 stars Poetry ER
58) The End of October by Lawrence Wright 4.4 stars (audio)
59) Writers & Lovers: A Novel by Lily King 4.3 stars ALA
60) Beaks, Bones & Bird Songs by Roger J. Lederer 3.8 stars (audio)
61) So Brave, Young, and Handsome by Leif Enger 3.4 stars (audio)
62) Panopticon by David Bajo 3.2 stars
63) In the Dream House: A Memoir by Carmen Maria Machado 4.3 stars (audio)
64) Crooked Hallelujah by Kelli Jo Ford 4 stars E
65) Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid 3.7 stars (audio)


66) Orange World and Other Stories by Karen Russell 3.7 stars
67) The Last Pirate of New York: A Ghost Ship & a Killer by Rich Cohen 4.3 stars (audio)
68) IQ (An IQ Novel (1)) by Joe Ide 4 stars
69) The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom 3.7 stars (audio)
70) I Was Their American Dream: A Graphic Memoir by Malaka Gharib 4.2 stars GN
71) Bruce Lee: A Life by Matthew Polly 4.3 stars (audio)
72) Arcadia: A Novel by Lauren Groff 3.6 stars
73) The Hidden Lives of Owls by Leigh Calvez 4 stars (audio)
74) Hum If You Don't Know the Words by Bianca Marais 4.2 stars
75) The Essential Neruda: Selected Poems by Pablo Neruda 4 stars Poetry
76) One Long River of Song (essays) by Brian Doyle 4.4 stars
77) The Mirror & the Light (Wolf Hall Trilogy by Hilary Mantel 3.8 stars (audio)
78) A Burning: A novel by Megha Majumdar 5 stars


79) Redhead by the Side of the Road by Anne Tyler 4 stars (audio)
80) Blood: A Memoir by Allison Moorer 4.2 stars (audio)
81) The Prisoner of Heaven (Book 3) by Carlos Ruiz Zafón 4.4 stars E
82) The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu by Joshua Hammer 3.6 stars (audio)
83) Animal Spirit: Stories by Francesca Marciano 4.5 stars
84) With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo 4 stars (audio)
85) The Virgin Suicides by Eugenides Jeffrey 4.5 stars
86) The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration by Michelle Alexander 5 stars (audio)
87) The Migration by Helen Marshall 3.6 stars
88) Parakeet: A Novel by Marie-Helene Bertino 4.2 stars
89) American Heiress by Jeffrey Toobin 4.6 stars (audio)


90) The Raw Shark Texts by Steven Hall 4.2 stars
91) Department of Mind-Blowing Theories by Tom Gauld 3.7 stars GN
92) Hamnet by Maggie O'Farrell 4.8 stars
93) Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts 3.8 stars (audio)
94) The Driftless Area by Tom Drury 3.7 stars
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3msf59Edited: Jul 27, 4:48pm Top

-Keith Taylor
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4msf59Edited: Jul 27, 4:49pm Top

^These are both from Gauld's latest collection Department of Mind-blowing Theories. Not as strong as his earlier stuff but still a few gems to admire.
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5quondameJul 27, 5:07pm Top
Happy new thread!

>1 msf59: All good things!
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6figsfromthistleJul 27, 5:07pm Top
Happy new one!
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7m.belljacksonJul 27, 5:22pm Top
>3 msf59:

Perfect cartoon for our Dickens Reading Challenge, wherever it went!

Hey. dog poop and night-tripping small prices to pay for all that Love and Loyalty!!
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8weird_OJul 27, 5:35pm Top
Yo, Mark. Thumbs up to ya.
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9bell7Jul 27, 5:57pm Top
Happy new thread, Mark!
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10msf59Jul 27, 6:01pm Top
>5 quondame: >6 figsfromthistle: Thanks, Susan & Figs!

>7 m.belljackson: "dog poop and night-tripping small prices to pay for all that Love and Loyalty." You got me there, Marianne. LOL.

>8 weird_O: >9 bell7: Thanks Bill & Mary!
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11msf59Edited: Jul 27, 6:06pm Top

85) The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides 4.5 stars

“In the end, the tortures tearing the Lisbon girls pointed to a simple reasoned refusal to accept the world as it was handed down to them, so full of flaws.”

“We couldn't imagine the emptiness of a creature who put a razor to her wrists and opened her veins, the emptiness and the calm.”

The Lisbon family consists of both parents and five teenage daughters. The girls have led a sheltered life, being reined in by a strong-willed bible-thumping mother. One fateful night, the daughters are allowed to have a chaperoned party, at their home. In a shocking turn, the youngest commits suicide and over that summer the rest follow suit. The story is told in a collective voice, representing the neighbor boys, who are infatuated with the girls and have followed their every move.
Of course, this impressive, challenging debut novel, takes getting used to and I can understand why so many readers have been completely turned off by it. Fortunately, I began to lock into it's dark, disturbing groove and was dazzled by his introspective prose and inventive style. Lots to chew on here and I am not sure a single reading, can digest it all.

**I also followed up, by watching the film version, directed by Sophia Coppola, which is very faithful to the novel but suffers from being a bit chilly and aloof. If you like the book, I still recommend seeing it.

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12drneutronJul 27, 6:09pm Top
Happy new thread!
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13PaulCranswickJul 27, 6:43pm Top
Happy new one buddy
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14mdorisJul 27, 7:22pm Top
Happy new thread Mark. Lucky 14! Love the local forest preserve pic up top.
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15mahsdadJul 27, 7:24pm Top
Happy New Thread. And The Virgin Suicides, on the list it goes!
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16richardderusJul 27, 7:25pm Top
>11 msf59: Introverted is a good way to describe the prose in that book. I fell on the "con" side, as we've touched on, but it is a powerful book to evoke serious deep responses.
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17katiekrugJul 27, 7:38pm Top
Happy new one, Mark!
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18vancouverdebJul 27, 8:10pm Top
Happy New Thread, Mark! I know I sympathised with the loss of your furbaby on facebook, but once again, I'm sorry for your family's loss. It's always hard to lose a good friend.

>1 msf59: Ah, for the lovely shade!
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19msf59Jul 27, 8:44pm Top
>12 drneutron: >13 PaulCranswick: Thanks, Jim & Paul.

>14 mdoris: Thanks, Mary. Hooray for lucky 14. Glad you like the topper.

>15 mahsdad: Thanks, Jeff. Glad I got you with a BB. Did you read Middlesex? If not, it is even better.
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20msf59Jul 27, 8:49pm Top
>16 richardderus: Hey, RD. Thanks for chiming in on TVS. Even for seasoned readers, I can see opinion being divided on that one. I am glad I came down a pro but I can definitely understand the cons.

>17 katiekrug: Thanks, Katie.

>18 vancouverdeb: Thanks, Deb. I appreciate your kind thoughts on the loss of Riley boy.
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21LovingLitJul 27, 8:51pm Top
I see you read Redhead by the Side of the Road by Anne Tyler recently! Now longlisted for the Booker :)
I am listening to A Spool of Blue Thread by her atm, but the narrator has - I better be careful here- such an American American accent....(yikes!). The nasal quality to it makes every observation sound like a whingeing gripe and it is irritating me. I might switch to paper book, as I have a copy. I hope it gets better.

I have not read Middlesex yet, but have wanted to for a million years ;)
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22benitastrnadJul 27, 10:06pm Top
>11 msf59:
My real life book group read this book and then we read Middlesex because we liked Virgin Suicides. I liked both books and thought highly of Virgin Suicides. I think he got the neighborhood atmosphere of middle class suburb in the 1960's and 70's perfectly. There is so much symbolism in the book. I liked the setting - Detroit. I liked the elm trees. It was a really good book and one I still think about, even though I read the book more than 10 years ago.
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23alphaorderJul 27, 10:17pm Top
>21 LovingLit: I read the Anne Tyler and enjoyed it, but don't think it was Booker Prize-winning worthy.
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24FamilyhistorianJul 27, 11:26pm Top
Happy new thread, Mark. Are you counting in days now rather than weeks?
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25Caroline_McElweeJul 28, 4:53am Top
>3 msf59: Love it.
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26Caroline_McElweeJul 28, 5:28am Top
This book will interest Mark:

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27msf59Jul 28, 5:29am Top
>21 LovingLit: Hi, Megan. I am also a fan of Tyler and I think I listened to the audio of A Spool of Blue Thread on audio but can't recall being repelled by the "American" accent. LOL. I think her narrative works well in audio form though and Redhead was no exception.

>22 benitastrnad: Glad to hear my favorite contrarian loved both The Virgin Suicides & Middlesex. I am happy that the setting and symbolism has stuck with you. That always speaks volumes. I just wish Eugenides would write more books!
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28msf59Edited: Jul 28, 5:37am Top
>23 alphaorder: Hi, Nancy! Welcome back to the grind. I completely agree with you on Redhead and not being Booker worthy.

>24 Familyhistorian: I might start counting days down, sometime next week. Yep, getting close, Meg. B.A.G.

>26 Caroline_McElwee: You always find such interesting stuff, Caroline. I had all ready added Owls of the Eastern Ice to my list but that is a very nice review and a great author photo too:

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29BLBeraJul 28, 7:59am Top
Happy new thread, Mark. I love the photos at the top.
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30karenmarieEdited: Jul 28, 8:22am Top
Happy new thread and happy Tuesday, Mark! That top photo is absolutely gorgeous, and looking at Pileated Woodpeckers always makes me feel that there are some things right with the world.

>11 msf59: I loved Middlesex and was deeply disturbed by TVS. I do agree with Benita, though, >22 benitastrnad: I think he got the neighborhood atmosphere of middle class suburb in the 1960's and 70's perfectly.

Yay for 5 weeks.
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31msf59Jul 28, 9:13am Top
>29 BLBera: Thanks, Beth.

>30 karenmarie: Good Morning, Karen and thanks. I agree with you about TVS being disturbing. Glad to hear you loved Middlesex.
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32richardderusJul 28, 9:24am Top
Wow...five more weeks! Wow!! I am really pleased for you, Mark, it's a long time coming.
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33laytonwoman3rdJul 28, 11:09am Top
Retirement in five weeks....hopefully just in time for cooler weather and lots of bird activity!
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34msf59Jul 28, 4:24pm Top
>32 richardderus: Thanks, Richard. It is starting to get pretty exciting around here. A new chapter for the book/bird/beer dude!

>33 laytonwoman3rd: That was exactly the plan, Linda. A couple of my co-workers are going at the end of the year. In the middle of winter? Really?
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35alphaorderJul 28, 4:26pm Top
In case you or anyone on your thread would like to hear Larry Watson discuss The Lives of Edie Pritchard, here is a video of the virtual event my local indie hosted with him.

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36msf59Edited: Jul 28, 5:46pm Top

^Since reading and loving Montana 1948, I have been a big fan of Larry Watson. Yes, he was an AAC author. I am glad to report I now have his latest, courtesy of LibraryThing E.R. Cheers!

>35 alphaorder: Perfect timing, Nancy. I will check out the video. Thanks.
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37vancouverdebJul 28, 5:48pm Top
Good fortune, your ER Win. Enjoy. Just 5 weeks, Lone Ranger!
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38msf59Jul 28, 6:01pm Top
>37 vancouverdeb: Thanks, Tonto! L.R. is a Happy Camper!
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39msf59Edited: Jul 29, 5:40am Top

"The Raw Shark Texts is a kaleidoscopic novel about the magnitude of love and the devastating effect of losing that love. It will dazzle you, it will move you, and will leave an indelible imprint like nothing you have read in a long time."

^I have had The Raw Shark Texts on shelf for at least a few years. I do not think I heard about this one through LT, but someone or something must have sparked my interest in it and it does sound like my cuppa. As part of my OTS Challenge, (I have been doing very good. Thank you very much) I am finally starting it tomorrow. Anyone here read this one? Any thoughts at all?
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40msf59Edited: Jul 29, 6:09am Top

^Off on a bird ramble. Fingers crossed we stay dry...
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41richardderusJul 29, 7:11am Top
>40 msf59: Dry and hot or wet and cool? Neither seems like a recipe for the sweetest of days. But I hope it turns out to be exactly that.
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42karenmarieJul 29, 8:18am Top
Happy Bird Ramble, Mark!

Congrats on so much reading OTS. Haven't heard of The Raw Shark Texts although it sounds interesting. Unfortunately my library doesn't have it and it doesn't quite inspire me to click Buy on Amazon. *smile* I'll wait to hear what you think of it.
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43benitastrnadJul 29, 12:11pm Top
I have had Raw Shark Texts on my shelves since I started in LT back in 2008. I still haven't read it. But there was a reason why I bought it. Must have had good reviews.
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44Whisper1Jul 29, 2:58pm Top
>11 msf59: I've added The Virgin Suicides to my tbr list. Your opening images, as always, are incredible.
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45msf59Jul 29, 4:40pm Top
>41 richardderus: It was a fine day, Richard. Thanks. It got warm but we stayed dry and had a good time out on the trails. A mix and prairie and woodlands. Blissful.

>42 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen. It was a good day. I hope to keep up my OTS reading for the rest of the year and beyond. Funny, I am still just making a dent but it is a happy dent. The Raw Shark Texts is off to a trippy, entertaining start.

>43 benitastrnad: Hey, Benita. 60 pages into The Raw Shark Texts. Very trippy but also intriguing enough, to keep the pages turning.

>44 Whisper1: Hi, Linda. Great to see, stranger. Glad I landed a BB.
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46msf59Edited: Jul 29, 5:44pm Top

86) The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander 5 stars

"Jarvious Cotton's great-great-grandfather could not vote as a slave. His great-grandfather was beaten to death by the Klu Klux Klan for attempting to vote. His grandfather was prevented from voting by Klan intimidation; his father was barred by poll taxes and literacy tests. Today, Cotton cannot vote because he, like many black men in the United States, has been labeled a felon and is currently on parole."

“African Americans are not significantly more likely to use or sell prohibited drugs than whites, but they are made criminals at drastically higher rates for precisely the same conduct.”

“The nature of the criminal justice system has changed. It is no longer primarily concerned with the prevention and punishment of crime, but rather with the management and control of the dispossessed.”

Over the last couple of years I have read a few excellent books on the horrors of mass incarceration. It is always a complete slap in the face and the frightening thing is, it has even become worse after Obama took office in 2008. What this superbly written and researched book does, is tie in all the other sinister travesties that have been put in place, to keep blacks and other minorities in virtual leg-chains. Prisoners in their own impoverished communities without the right to vote, stripped of their humanity and walled off from having a decent existence. Protests have been igniting across America for months now, to address these injustices. Lets pray, that we see some kind of change.
This is an outstanding book and should be required reading. It was published in 2010 and this 10th Anniversary edition, features an excellent foreword that takes us up through Trump's (GAG!) election.

**Also a terrific audiobook edition.

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47ChelleBearssJul 29, 6:00pm Top
Happy new thread!

>11 msf59: is that your first by Eugenides? I liked his Middlesex the best!
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48Whisper1Jul 29, 6:08pm Top
>46 msf59: What an excellent review, I hope my library has a copy of this one
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49msf59Jul 29, 9:06pm Top
>47 ChelleBearss: Thanks, Chelle. Good to see you. Middlesex was my first Eugenides and I loved it.

>48 Whisper1: Thanks, Linda. I hope you can track down the 10th anniversary edition.
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50karenmarieJul 30, 8:08am Top
Good morning, Mark, and happy Thursday to you. I'm watching a hummingbird, two finches, and a squirrel. A while ago Zoe, our new ginger mommy kitty, discovered birds - she was stretched against the window trying to touch one, I think. The hummingbirds are really out and about this morning - two are now fighting for access to the feeder. Fun stuff!

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51msf59Jul 30, 9:07am Top
Morning, Karen. Love hearing the feeder report. Go Zoe! She sounds like a sweetheart.
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52Caroline_McElweeJul 30, 2:27pm Top
>46 msf59: I've got this somewhere...
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53richardderusJul 30, 4:16pm Top
>46 msf59: A trenchant, timely read indeed. I'm mid-Mary Trump just now, but took a bit of time off to cruise around the threads.
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54msf59Jul 30, 4:50pm Top
>52 Caroline_McElwee: I hope you find it and add it to the pile, Caroline. It is an excellent and important read.

>53 richardderus: Indeed, my friend. Not sure I could stomach the Mary Trump book. Worth reading so far?
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55msf59Edited: Jul 30, 4:59pm Top

"Burning slums and five-star hotels, romantic love and prison agonies, criminal wars and Bollywood films, spiritual gurus and mujaheddin guerrillas – this huge novel has the world of human experience in its reach, and a passionate love for India at its heart. Based on the life of the author, it is by any measure the debut of an extraordinary voice in literature."

A few years ago, a family friend and a Good Reads pal highly recommended Shantaram. I have had a print copy and an audio copy for that long. I am sure it's massive size, over 900 pages had me dragging my feet. Well, my audiobook time will be drying up soon, so I thought it would be a good time to finally bookhorn it in, even at 42 hours. I started it today and it reads very well. Honestly. I can't recall any LT activity on it. It came out in 2003. Has anyone read it? Thoughts? I also found the author's bio very intriguing:

"Gregory David Roberts is an Australian author, most noted for his novel Shantaram. He was a heroin addict and convicted bank robber who escaped from Pentridge Prison and fled to India where he lived for ten years."
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56vancouverdebJul 30, 7:57pm Top
Shantram sounds very interesting, Mark, but very long. Good for you for bookhorning it in.
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57msf59Jul 30, 9:20pm Top
>56 vancouverdeb: Thanks, Deb. At least it is off to a very good start, although I am less than 10% in.
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58richardderusJul 31, 7:37am Top
Weekends are nothing to the almost-retired, are they? Happy Fry's-Day anyway.

I own Shantaram but haven't read it because OW.
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59karenmarieJul 31, 8:10am Top
Good morning, Mark, and happy Friday to you.

>55 msf59: I listened to it from March 2012 to May 2012 and gave it 4.5 stars. I wasn’t writing full reviews yet, but here’s what I wrote.
I've given it a rating of 4 1/2 stars because the best moments are worth that rating. The prose goes back and forth between lyrical and clumsy. Roberts is an idealistic person and it shines through every sentence, even the rough ones. He clearly loves India and clearly understands his own weaknesses and failings. He's occasionally a bit smug, but so genuinely in love with his story and the people he's met that I forgive him unreservedly. He's an author that I would like to meet. Can't say much better than that.
Have fun with it!
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60DeltaQueen50Jul 31, 8:28am Top
Hi Mark. I have had Shantaram on my Kindle and waiting patiently for a number of years but the size of it seems to keep putting me off - hopefully your thoughts on the book will move it up the list. :)
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61msf59Jul 31, 9:06am Top
>58 richardderus: Hooray for the perpetual weekend, RD. Shantaram is off to a good start.

>59 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. Thanks for chiming in and offering a review of Shantaram and a positive one at that. About 4 hours in but I am enjoying it. I just have to keep the characters in order.

>60 DeltaQueen50: Hi, Judy. Good to see you. I am sure I will be recommending Shantaram. Glad you have a Kindle version, since this is quite the Chunkster to carry around.
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62viviansJul 31, 10:36am Top
>55 msf59: Hi Mark - I listened to Shantaram years ago and remember really enjoying it. Hope it works for you! Have a good weekend.
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63streamsongJul 31, 11:23am Top
I'll be interested to see what you thank of Shantaram. 900 pages ......

I need to put the New Jim Crow on the tbr list. I read American Prison last year with the PBS read, and was appalled. I'm still slowly making my way through How to Be an Anti-Racist.

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64weird_OJul 31, 11:41am Top
I'm reading lighter fare just now: To Say Nothing of the Dog. Time travel. Humor. Many pages. Words. So many words.
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65quondameJul 31, 1:34pm Top
>64 weird_O: I loved To Say Nothing of the Dog. What a fabulous, hilarious romp,
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66FAMeulsteeJul 31, 3:45pm Top
Happy new thread, Mark!

>1 msf59: Lovely pictures!
Still counting in weeks, not working days to go? ;-)
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67msf59Jul 31, 5:52pm Top
>62 vivians: Happy Weekend, Vivian. Thanks for chiming in on Shantaram. It is off to a very good start.

>63 streamsong: Hi, Janet. After all these years, I still get spooked by BIG books and the funny thing is, most of the time I love the book. Go figure! i am very happy that you needed The New Jim Crow to your list. I want all my LT pals to read it.

>64 weird_O: Howdy, Bill. I have To Say Nothing of the Dog in the stacks somewhere but ever since being somewhat underwhelmed by The Doomsday Book, I have not been inspired to try more Willis. Someday, perhaps?

>66 FAMeulstee: Thanks. Anita. Great to see you. I'll start counting days next week. B.A.G.
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68msf59Edited: Jul 31, 5:58pm Top

Hamnet has received off the chart reviews. Team that up with solid raves from my LT pals and I knew I needed to get my mitts on this one. Since the library wait list is a mile long, I thought I would purchase a copy. A birthday gift and another Thingaversary pick. A shout out to my sister Kathy for supplying the funds. Yah! I think it will be my next print book read.
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69msf59Edited: Jul 31, 6:02pm Top

^I was dropping off a package today and looked up and saw an amazing sky, just before noon. I had to get a cellphone photo, although it barely does it justice. There is beauty everywhere, if you just take the time to look.
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70laytonwoman3rdEdited: Jul 31, 6:17pm Top
Hello AAC buddy....are you going to manage any Robert Penn Warren this month? His thread is live now.
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71vancouverdebAug 1, 12:00am Top
>68 msf59: Enjoy Hamnet, Mark. I am sure you will!

>69 msf59: Amazing sky, indeed Mark!
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72Caroline_McElweeAug 1, 4:02am Top
>69 msf59: Stunning. We had an amazing red sky last night Mark.

>68 msf59: I think you will enjoy Hamnet.
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73msf59Aug 1, 5:42am Top
>70 laytonwoman3rd: Hi, Linda. Good to see you. I have fallen off the AAC bandwagon in recent months. I hope to get back on board. I have never read All the King’s Men, so I really should bookhorn that one in. Thanks for the reminder.

>71 vancouverdeb: Thanks, Deb. I plan on starting Hamnet next week.

>72 Caroline_McElwee: Ooh, that red sky sounds great, Caroline. Looking forward to Hamnet.
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74msf59Aug 1, 5:46am Top

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75msf59Edited: Aug 1, 6:08am Top

^I am having an issue on my home page. Under my "Talk" columns, all my starred topics are jumbled up with different years and I can't seem to correct it. WTH? Any else experience this?

**I fixed it! Whew!!
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76Ameise1Aug 1, 6:13am Top
Happy weekend, Mark. I hope all is well at your place.
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77EllaTimAug 1, 6:36am Top
>68 msf59: Hey! That's an owl feather over his eyes! What's it doing there? I found a very similar one at the allotment, and saved it, that's why I recognise it. Hope you like the book. I like the cover;-)

>69 msf59: Nice picture, lovely sky.
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78lauralkeetAug 1, 6:59am Top
>68 msf59: Hamnet -- hurray! Great choice, Mark. I can't wait to see what you think of it.
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79karenmarieEdited: Aug 1, 8:14am Top
‘Morning, Mark, and happy Saturday to you! Glad that 4 hours in you’re liking Shantaram. I most likely will never read it, but there is a sequel, The Mountain Shadow. Looks like touchstones are wonky.

>69 msf59: You’re right – there is beauty everywhere. Thanks for sharing.
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80msf59Aug 1, 9:10am Top
>76 Ameise1: Happy Saturday, Barb. Great to see you. All is good here.

>77 EllaTim: I did not realize that was an owl feather, Ella. Another reason to be attracted to this book. Looking forward to it.

>78 lauralkeet: I am pumped about it, Laura and should start it soon.

>79 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. Yep, really enjoying Shantaram. I never heard any buzz on the sequel. Once, I am done with this one, I will scope out the reviews.
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81jnwelchEdited: Aug 1, 9:43am Top
Happy New Thread, Mark! Love the photos and "5 weeks left". Man, with all the USPS troubles, you're getting out at a good time.

Good reviews! I began to lock into it's dark, disturbing groove and was dazzled by his introspective prose and inventive style. The Virgin Suicides is not my cuppa, but thumb for the excellent review.

We're off to the library soon. I've enjoyed the graphic novels of American Gods so far. The third just came in.

P.S. Oops, thumb when you post the review.
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82richardderusAug 1, 10:06am Top
>69 msf59: How beautiful! Clouds are the single most underrated source of natural beauty. I suppose because they're the very definition of ephermeral...look away for a second and there's nothing left of the beauty you so admired.

But, OTOH, there's some all-new beauty to enjoy.

>75 msf59: That happens to me periodically. I close the tab, open another, and call up LT again and so far that's worked every time.
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83msf59Aug 1, 4:38pm Top
>81 jnwelch: Thanks, Joe. It is quickly becoming 4 weeks, starting Monday. Yah! Glad you liked my mini-review of The Virgin Suicides. I swear, I thought I had posted it. I usually do. I am glad to hear you are enjoying the American Gods GNs.

>82 richardderus: Hey, Richard. Hooray for another cloud lover! The sky yesterday, was a feast for the eyes. As far as the "Talk" columns go, I must have inadvertently clicked off the "last message" tab. It really gets screwy if you do.
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84msf59Edited: Aug 1, 4:51pm Top

"Just as she did with North Korea, award-winning journalist Barbara Demick explores one of the most hidden corners of the world. She tells the story of a Tibetan town perched eleven thousand feet above sea level that is one of the most difficult places in all of China for foreigners to visit. Eat the Buddha spans decades of modern Tibetan and Chinese history, as told through the private lives of Demick’s subjects..."

^I really want to read Eat the Buddha: Life and Death in a Tibetan Town. I loved her last book, Nothing to Envy and have wanted to read more of her work. She is interviewed on the latest New York Times Books podcast. Any other Demick fans out there?

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85EBT1002Aug 1, 9:55pm Top
You have 5 weeks left. I have 365 days. But who's counting?? 😂

>69 msf59: wow!
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86richardderusAug 1, 9:58pm Top
>84 msf59: I seem to remember reading Nothing to Envy. "All charity starts with a full stomach" floats through my mind when I try to call up details about it...bleak, miserable lives...no hope anywhere.

I don't see it reviewed or catalogued so I must've borrowed it from the library.

And that's all I got Demick-wise.
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87msf59Aug 2, 5:59am Top
>85 EBT1002: Actually, 4 weeks from tomorrow, but who's counting. B.A.G.

>86 richardderus: Nothing to Envy was an excellent read, RD. I had completely forgot, that I had also read Logavina Street: Life and Death in a Sarajevo Neighborhood, which was also fantastic. A perfect snapshot of the Bosnia war.
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88karenmarieAug 2, 8:16am Top
'Morning, Mark, and happy Sunday to you. I hope you enjoy your solo bird jaunt this morning.

Yay for 4 weeks from tomorrow.
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89richardderusEdited: Aug 2, 10:17am Top
>87 msf59: Oh, I don't remember knowing about Logavina Street before now..."thanks" Birddude. No, really. Just "thanks".

ETA Something on Goodreads that you need to see!
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90Caroline_McElweeAug 2, 10:55am Top
>84 msf59: Yes Mark. Her book on Korea was an eye opener, and as I've been fascinated by Tibet from childhood, this one definitely goes on my list.
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91weird_OAug 2, 12:01pm Top
>67 msf59: Whoa. You were underwhelmed by Doomsday Book. You poor dear boy.

>69 msf59: Back in the 1920s and '30s, Alfred Stieglitz produced a series of images of clouds that he called Equivalents. They are regarded as a pioneering attempt to create abstract photographs.
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92msf59Edited: Aug 2, 7:05pm Top
>88 karenmarie: Hi, Karen. Nothing very exciting on my bird stroll but I enjoyed myself, never the less. I love a walk in the woods, although there were more walkers and joggers than I liked.

>89 richardderus: Logavina Street is one I highly recommend, Richard. I loved Good Reads owl photos. Pretty cool.

>90 Caroline_McElwee: Glad to see all the Demick love, Caroline.

>91 weird_O: Hey, Bill. I know Willis has scores of fans, I just don't think she is a good fit for me. I was not familiar with Stieglitz or Equivalents. Thanks for turning me on to both.
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93SandDuneAug 3, 3:05am Top
>67 msf59: >92 msf59: I have read two Connie Willis books and I find her intensely irritating. I only read the second because so many people love her that I thought I ought to give her another try.
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94msf59Aug 3, 5:27am Top
>93 SandDune: Hi, Rhian. Good to see you. Glad to see that I am not alone about my reaction to Willis.
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95jnwelchAug 3, 8:34am Top
4 weeks and counting! Morning, Mark.

Let's see, I'm reading Writers & Lovers by Lily King, and I'm in the last third of the Larry Watson. I was a little disappointed by Naomi Shihab Nye's poetry collection Fuel, but it did have a couple of really good ones. Next up is the new one from Natalie Diaz, which I have high hopes for.

Enjoy the final stretch, buddy.
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96karenmarieAug 3, 9:27am Top
'Morning, Mark! I hope you have a good day.

I just watched a Cooper's Hawk in my Crepe Myrtle for upwards of 10 minutes. A very nice start to what's looking like a stormy day even before TS Isaias arrives sometime tonight.
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97msf59Aug 3, 4:26pm Top
>95 jnwelch: Hey, Joe. Yep, 4 weeks baby! I really enjoyed Writers & Lovers. I hope you feel the same. Bummer about the Nye collection but I hope new Diaz makes up for it.

>96 karenmarie: Hi, Karen. Hooray, for getting to watch the Cooper's Hawk. They are vert rare visitors to our backyard. Good luck with Isaias.
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98richardderusAug 3, 4:45pm Top
All Connie Willis detractors: I am one of you. I disliked her time-travel series a lot, and find her holiday short stories saccharine in the extreme.

BUT! She wrote one really, really good novella: Inside Job...HL Mencken, famous atheist, turns up in an unexpected place. Also good, though not *quite* as good, is I Met a Traveler in an Antique Land...a resolute materialist encounters Ozymandias Books, a shop that is but isn't and do I ever want to find it.

Apart from those two, I will never mention the dog, I don't care about the bishop's stump, and let doom fall where it may.
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99msf59Aug 3, 5:08pm Top
>98 richardderus: LOL. I love it, RD. You do not hold back. At least you gave her plenty of chances. The novella does sound good.

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100msf59Edited: Aug 3, 5:09pm Top

-Keith Taylor
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101katiekrugAug 3, 7:03pm Top
>100 msf59: - LOL!

Hiya, Mark! I've been lurking but figured I should at least congratulate you on your impending retirement. I can't imagine being that close - I am feeling giddy for you! I hope the next 4 weeks fly by.
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102jessibud2Aug 3, 7:22pm Top
>100 msf59: - Oy.

What I am waiting for is a journalist - any journalist - to ask t-Rump, point blank, where he got his medical degree. And not give up till he answers. And why does he think his *opinion* is more important or valid than all the medical experts. What I am hearing on today's news is even worse than his usual garbage (such as what your buddy Keith Taylor summarizes so well). If what t-Rump spews daily wasn't so insane, it would be unbelievable. Instead, it's so insane, it's predictable.
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103msf59Aug 3, 8:30pm Top
>101 katiekrug: Hi, Katie. One advantage of being an old fart, is that I can finally retire. Your time will come. If August flies by as fast as July does, this should go quickly. B.A.G.

>102 jessibud2: Hi, Shelley. Great to see you. I just watched a news profile on Alex Jones and I can't believe how popular this sick, repellent man is and of course he is a buddy of Trumps. This is the world we live in.
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104LovingLitAug 4, 4:30am Top
>69 msf59: so true! I love looking up :)
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105msf59Aug 4, 5:50am Top
>104 LovingLit: Hooray for looking up, Megan. Beauty worth seeing in every direction.
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106msf59Edited: Aug 4, 6:05am Top

^We don't get many blue jays in our back yard, but when I got home from birding on Sunday morning, there were four of them hanging around out back. Such good looking and vocal birds.
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107EllaTimAug 4, 6:39am Top
>106 msf59: Beautiful birds. A family?
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108Caroline_McElweeAug 4, 6:57am Top
>106 msf59: how lucky, and to get photos too Mark.
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109karenmarieAug 4, 8:23am Top
‘Morning, Mark! Happy Tuesday to you.

>100 msf59: Yup. LOL.

>102 jessibud2: Trump will walk away from the podium before answering a question he doesn’t want to answer, Shelley. Ain’t gonna happen.

>106 msf59: Fantastic pictures, Mark! I love Blue Jays. They are so beautiful. Thanks for sharing.
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110streamsongAug 4, 8:57am Top
>69 msf59: Amazing photo!

>106 msf59: More amazing photos

Do you watch Rachel Maddow? The show last night (stand in host) said that the new PO chief honcho is cutting PO overtime as a cost saving measure. But it's making deliveries less efficient. Supposedly part of the plan to make mail in voting less feasible.

I know one of my mail order perscriptions has been in transit for six days now. Grrrrr.
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111richardderusAug 4, 9:21am Top
>100 msf59: LOL

>106 msf59: Beautiful! I love their plumage. It's like nature made them pretty so we'd forget what bullies they are.
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112msf59Aug 4, 9:59am Top
>107 EllaTim: I am not sure about that. It is hard to tell them apart, Ella.

>108 Caroline_McElwee: I see and hear them on my bird strolls, Caroline but it is nice to get a bird's eye view.

>109 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. Trump sure seems to be doubling down on being a major di*k, right? Lots of blue jay love. Yah!
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113msf59Aug 4, 10:03am Top
>110 streamsong: Hi, Janet. Glad you like the photos. I do watch Rachel occasionally but not last night. I haven't seen any obvious sabotage yet at the P.O. but I wouldn't put it past 'em.

>111 richardderus: Yep, blue jays are gorgeous. Yes, they can be bullies but are also great watch birds, calling out alerts, when necessary.
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114msf59Edited: Aug 4, 6:02pm Top

"A short, piercing, deeply moving new novel about the death of Shakespeare's eleven-year-old son Hamnet--a name interchangeable with Hamlet in fifteenth-century Britain--and the years leading up to the production of his great play."

^This HOT buzzy title, does not need much of an introduction so I will keep it simple- I just started Hamnet today. Just a few pages in but I all ready have been drawn it to her lovely narrative style. Yes, we are currently dealing with a relentless dose of discontent and horror but it sure has been a terrific year for book releases and we are just in August. Just the comfort we NEED. B.A.G.

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115msf59Aug 4, 6:28pm Top

-Keith Taylor
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116figsfromthistleAug 4, 7:46pm Top
A little behind but dropping by to say hello!

Nice blue jay photos. They are a common but beautiful occurrence in my backyard.
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117msf59Aug 4, 9:04pm Top
>116 figsfromthistle: Hi, Figs! Good to see you. Hooray for the blue jays!
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118Caroline_McElweeAug 5, 2:57am Top
>115 msf59: tee hee.
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119msf59Edited: Aug 5, 6:28am Top

^Yep, still making my way through Shantaram. Nearing the halfway point, which on audio is just over 21 hours. At least, I am enjoying it. He is a good storyteller and his love of India pulsates on every page, but lets see if he can finish out the marathon, without stumbling...
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120alphaorderAug 5, 7:26am Top

Did you know about this book pubbing this month?

Charlotte McConaghy, Migrations
(Flatiron Books)

Fiction that addresses the climate crisis can also focus on the personal. Case in point: This gorgeous new novel by Charlotte McConaghy. It stars Franny Stone, who sets out to forget her troubled past by following the migration of birds. But once she notices that the natural world she treasures is disappearing, she travels to Greenland to find the last flock of Arctic terns on the planet—and follows them on what might be their last migration. As her journey unfolds, her past continues to haunt her, until it forces a personal reckoning that cuts right to the heart. This beautiful novel is an ode—if not an elegy—to an endangered planet and the people and places we love.
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121karenmarieAug 5, 7:37am Top
'Morning, Mark, and happy Wednesday to you. I've already seen the first hummingbirds of the day.
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122richardderusAug 5, 8:53am Top
>115 msf59: Haw!

>119 msf59: 21. HOURS.

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123msf59Aug 5, 9:59am Top
>120 alphaorder: Hi, Nancy. Yes, I have been seeing and hearing a lot of buzz on Migrations. It sure sounds like my cuppa. Thanks for sharing.

>121 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. Beautiful day here in the Midwest. And hooray for the first hummer of the day.

>122 richardderus: Yep, 42 hours is a challenge, Richard. I am sure that is the reason I dragged my feet so long, but I gotta say, it has been enjoyable.
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124jnwelchEdited: Aug 5, 11:49am Top
Hey, buddy. Enjoy the cooler weather today.

I did enjoy Writers and Lovers, and I’m glad you did, too. The Larry Watson turned out to be very good after a ragged (for me) start. Now I’m on The Library Book, which I remember you liked, and Miss Austen.

The Natalie Diaz is very good so far.
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125charl08Aug 5, 2:28pm Top
>106 msf59: Wow, they're beautiful. Did they eat, or are they not interested in bird seed?

>114 msf59: I have in the TBR pile, really must try to get to it soon.

>119 msf59: Sounds like Shantaram is quite an audio commitment. What made you pick up this classic now? (I've never read it.)
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126quondameAug 5, 3:35pm Top
>124 jnwelch: I loved The Library Book which had the added attraction of being about a library which is fundamental to supporting my reading habit.
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127msf59Aug 5, 4:57pm Top
>124 jnwelch: Hey, Joe. It was a very nice day. We have been enjoying a comfortable stretch, although that is supposed to change this weekend. I am glad you had a good time with Writers & Lovers. She is talented. Looking forward to the latest Watson. Maybe later this month? Yes, I really liked The Library Book. I am pleased you are getting to it.
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128msf59Edited: Aug 5, 5:12pm Top
>125 charl08: Hi, Charlotte. I do not have the right feeders for blue jays. I think they prefer a platform feeder. I will have to get one one of these days, if I can keep the squirrels off of it. Hamnet is off to a terrific start. In regards to your question about Shantaram: I have wanted to listen to it on audio and have dragged my feet long enough and as an added incentive, I am retiring at the end of the month, so my audiobook time will be dramatically reduced.

>126 quondame: That is an interesting fact, Susan. Good for you.
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129msf59Edited: Aug 5, 5:12pm Top

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130alphaorderAug 6, 6:18am Top
August Poetry: https://themillions.com/2020/08/must-read-poetry-august-2020.htm
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131msf59Aug 6, 6:23am Top
>130 alphaorder: Ooh, thanks, Nancy. I have read very little poetry the past couple of months and I am itchin' for some. I did request Migrations from the library but it might be awhile.
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132karenmarieAug 6, 6:47am Top
Good morning, Mark! Happy Thursday-day-off. Enjoy your day.
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133richardderusAug 6, 12:38pm Top
>129 msf59: *retch*
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134msf59Aug 6, 4:45pm Top
>132 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen. It has been a fine day off, despite a lack of reading and LT time.

>133 richardderus: Agree...RD.
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135msf59Edited: Aug 6, 4:48pm Top

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136Caroline_McElweeAug 7, 5:23am Top
>135 msf59: Would that be fake news now Mark?
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137msf59Aug 7, 5:57am Top
>136 Caroline_McElwee: Absolutely, Caroline. Grins...
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138msf59Edited: Aug 7, 6:28am Top

^Barn Swallow, from a recent bird ramble.
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139karenmarieAug 7, 6:57am Top
'Morning, Mark, and a very happy Friday to you.

You're really moving along on Shantaram. I remember I had to renew it twice when I listened to the library's copy.
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140msf59Aug 7, 9:53am Top
>139 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. I am so glad I decided to listen to Shantaram before retirement, or it would have taken me forever to get through.
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141m.belljacksonAug 7, 3:10pm Top
Happy Weekend, Mark - what a cute little bird to make us all smile!

My daughter and I were up around 6:30 AM to feed the neighbor's chickens and ducks
and saw Geese Flying South From Horicon.

Sure hope it was just a practice run and not a sign of a really early Winter.
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142alphaorderAug 7, 6:58pm Top
>138 msf59: Lots of Barn Swallows around the building at work. Miss them.
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143msf59Aug 7, 8:51pm Top
>141 m.belljackson: Happy Weekend, Marianne. Yep, we saw a good number of geese flying yesterday too. It does seem a little early. Also hoping for a practice run.

>142 alphaorder: Hi, Nancy. This was also at a picnic pavilion. This seems to be the only place to get them to stay still.
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144karenmarieAug 8, 8:17am Top
Good morning, Mark! Happy Saturday to you.
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145weird_OAug 8, 9:36am Top
I'm slicing through the day's turmoil with a butter knife, Mark. Nothin' to it.


RPW is a masterful observer, slowing time, slowing it so intimate details can be appreciated. The set of the lips, the stillness of the eyes.
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146Caroline_McElweeAug 8, 10:02am Top
>138 msf59: Lovely. And great against that duck egg blue background too Mark.
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147richardderusAug 8, 11:19am Top
>138 msf59: Handsome fella!

You ***NEED*** to look at this Twitter thread: Mr. Bean vs Owls
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148msf59Edited: Aug 8, 5:32pm Top
>144 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen. Big, loving waves.

>145 weird_O: Hey, Bill. Nobody slices through the day's turmoil like yourself. I think I am going to follow your lead and start All the King's Men, right after my current audio.

>146 Caroline_McElwee: The reason I posted that photo, Caroline was because of that colored background. LOL.

>147 richardderus: Love it, Richard, although I never really GOT Mr. Bean.
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149PaulCranswickAug 8, 4:31pm Top
That last post was your 4,000th on your threads this year, Mark.

Have a great weekend, buddy.
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150msf59Aug 8, 5:30pm Top
>149 PaulCranswick: That sounds like a respectable number, Paul. B.A.G. Thanks. I hope you are having a good weekend too.
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151msf59Aug 8, 5:34pm Top

^Have a great Saturday night, everyone!
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152vancouverdebAug 8, 6:22pm Top
>138 msf59: I see lot of Barn Swallows around here, Mark. Not long until retirement! Enjoy your Saturday night!
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153banjo123Aug 8, 6:48pm Top
Happy weekend, Mark! I can relate to >151 msf59:

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154msf59Aug 9, 6:48am Top
>152 vancouverdeb: Thanks, Deb. We had a very nice time with friends and yes, beer was involved. Tree and barn swallows are our most common swallows. I am sure you have a couple different kinds as well.

>153 banjo123: LOL. I love that. Good to see you, Rhonda. I hope you had that beer. I know I did.
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155msf59Edited: Aug 9, 8:32am Top

87) The Migration by Helen Marshall 3.6 stars

Of course, I picked this one up for the title and the cover, which is unusual for me and I soon discovered that this novel has nothing to do with birds. It did end up being a timely read though, as the story focuses on a plague that is killing young people, along with a climate change nightmare, as storms and flooding ravage the land. It is not a great book by any means but it did end up being better than I expected, despite it's flaws.

88) Parakeet: A Novel by Marie-Helene Bertino 4.2 stars

Wow! This one was such a satisfying surprise. It begins with a fanciful premise, as a bride to be, is visited by a parakeet, who the bride thinks is the spirit of her dead grandmother. She begins doling out some startling advice, that sets the bride in a whirlwind of self-doubt. The story then spins into a dark exploration of this young woman's struggle to find happiness, on her own terms. The writing is strong and hard-hitting.

89) American Heiress: The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst by Jeffrey Toobin 4.6 stars

I can't believe I dragged my feet so long, on getting to this one, because it is top-notch narrative nonfiction. Like most of the baby boom generation, I was familiar with the Patty Hearst saga, (I was about 15, when it happened) but I quickly discovered, while reading it, how little I really knew about this extraordinary event. Highly recommended.
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156msf59Edited: Aug 9, 9:19am Top

-Keith Taylor
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157BLBeraAug 9, 9:32am Top
Parakeet caught my attention, Mark. I look forward to it.

>156 msf59: :)
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158Caroline_McElweeAug 9, 9:44am Top
>156 msf59: Love it.
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159jessibud2Aug 9, 9:49am Top
>156 msf59: - I wish! Sic 'em all!
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160richardderusAug 9, 10:26am Top
>156 msf59: ^^^what >159 jessibud2: said
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161karenmarieAug 9, 11:15am Top
'Morning, Mark! Happy Sunday. Enjoy the A/C, the books, and the beer.

Parakeet is now on my wish list. *smile*
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162msf59Aug 9, 12:20pm Top
>157 BLBera: Hi, Beth. I think Parakeet would be just your cuppa. Have you read her before?

>158 Caroline_McElwee: >159 jessibud2: >160 richardderus: My kind of dog...grins!!

>161 karenmarie: Happy Sunday, Karen. The day has been going exactly as planned. Glad I got you with a BB. It's a good 'un.
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163msf59Edited: Aug 9, 12:23pm Top

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164vancouverdebAug 9, 4:51pm Top
We do have tree swallows and I see them all the time. Enjoy Hamnet. It is really good.
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165msf59Aug 9, 5:11pm Top
>164 vancouverdeb: Hi, Deb. Hooray for the tree swallows! I read a nice chunk of Hamnet today, (only 50 pages left) and I am loving it. As usual, my LT pals were spot-on.
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166jessibud2Aug 9, 5:16pm Top
Mark, did I ever tell you the story of the barn swallows I have seen? There is a supermarket I used to go to that has an open underground parking space (you drive down a ramp to get to it, no doors or anything). A large group of barn swallows used to build their nests on the pipes that run along the ceiling. I would park my car and get out to watch or photograph them. If you get too close, especially if there are babies, they dive-bomb you. The management removed all the nests one year because patrons were complaining about bird poop on their parked cars. I called the nature conservancy because I was sure that it was illegal to do that especially while they were being occupied. I never did hear what happened but I was there not too long ago and I see nests again. If I remember, I will post a few pics.
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167msf59Aug 9, 5:19pm Top

^Yep, it is National Book Lover's Day, (that is every day for this bunch...) I spent a big part of it reading Hamnet. 50 pages left and of course, I am loving it. What did everyone else read?
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168msf59Aug 9, 5:24pm Top
>166 jessibud2: Thanks, for sharing your barn swallow story, Shelley. If they removed the nests, I am sure sure the barn swallows would have relocated, hopefully somewhere not as invasive. I have not been very close to them, so I have never been dive-bombed.
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169msf59Edited: Aug 9, 5:28pm Top

^I also wrapped up Department of Mind-Blowing Theories today. I know Tom Gauld has many fans over here. Even though this science collection had more misses than hits, he still never fails to put a smile on my face.
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170FamilyhistorianAug 10, 12:24am Top
Only three more weeks now, Mark. Is the mail starting to feel lighter and the route going faster every day?
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171PaulCranswickEdited: Aug 10, 12:58am Top
>167 msf59: I have just started Dominicana, Mark and like it a lot.

I will probably finish Born a Crime tonight too and am enjoying that too.
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172msf59Edited: Aug 10, 6:01am Top
>170 Familyhistorian: Yep, Meg. It is quickly winding down, my friend. The mail has been on the light side but the days do seem to be accelerating along.

>171 PaulCranswick: Hi, Paul. Thanks for the book update. I have Dominicana on my list. I loved Born a Crime. Great memoir.
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173alphaorderEdited: Aug 10, 7:23am Top
So excited for you Mark!

Your retirement coincides with Alina heading off to college - so the countdown is happening here too. She is ready - mom is not. But knowing she is ready is helping me. :)

Read Memorial Drive over the weekend. Highly recommend. It sticks with you...
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174karenmarieAug 10, 8:09am Top
‘Morning, Mark!

>168 msf59: I finished Mansfield Park on National Book Lover’s Day.

Three weeks to go. I’m so happy for you. Is it real yet or will it only be real when you don’t have to get up to an alarm to go to work?
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175jnwelchAug 10, 8:34am Top
Morning, Mark.

Looks like good reading up there. I hope your day goes well, buddy.
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176richardderusAug 10, 8:47am Top
Happily cruising to the end of the stretch, are you? Pity about the new Gauld, but the ones you posted are hilarious. I'm especially drawn to (!) the emoji one.
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177msf59Aug 10, 10:02am Top
>173 alphaorder: Thanks, Nancy. It is pretty exciting. Hopefully we can celebrate over a beer or two. I have Memorial Drive on my list. Glad to hear you liked it.

>174 karenmarie: Thanks, Karen. It will probably get really "real" on my final day.

>175 jnwelch: Morning, Joe. I am doing fine on this muggy work day. I know you guys are dealing with some sadness at your place. I hope you find some comfort in the books.

>176 richardderus: Hey, RD. I might find all of the Gauld a pure delight, so give it a try. Plenty of gems in there.
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178msf59Edited: Aug 10, 6:02pm Top

"...a wry and sophisticated heist drama. Set in the rugged region of the Midwest that gives the novel its title, The Driftless Area is the story of Pierre Hunter, a young bartender with unfailing optimism, a fondness for coin tricks, and an uncanny capacity for finding trouble."

After finishing the incredible Hamnet, I returned to my OTS Challenge and selected The Driftless Area. I read and loved The End of Vandalism, about 10 years ago, and, (yep, I sound like a broken record here) I have wanted to get back to more of his work. Drury seems to be a author that has been overlooked on LT. He shares some similarities with Larry Watson & Kent Haruf so I am surprised by his lack of LT love.
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179laytonwoman3rdAug 10, 9:03pm Top
*adds Tom Drury to the long list of authors I must read*
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180EllaTimEdited: Aug 11, 5:02am Top
>169 msf59: Lol!

Only three weeks to go! Any plans?
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181msf59Aug 11, 5:56am Top
>179 laytonwoman3rd: Hi, Linda. I would like to see Drury get more attention. He seems to be a good fit for many of us over here.

>180 EllaTim: Hi, Ella. We do have a Carolina trip lined up, for later in September but that is about it. Otherwise, lots of reading and birding.
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182richardderusEdited: Aug 11, 9:22am Top
Three. More. Tuesdays.


off to hunt up Tom Drury's work

ETA The End of Vandalism is only $2.99 on Kindle!
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183karenmarieAug 11, 8:13am Top
'Morning, Mark, and happy Tuesday to you.

I'm watching a finch vs. cardinal battle on the sunflower feeder, highly amusing. A hummingbird came, sipped, and went. Yesterday I think I saw a male Blue Bunting. The blue was much more brilliant than a Bluebird's, but am not 100% sure since he was flitting in the Crepe Myrtle and I couldn't quite follow with the binoculars.
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184SkyeHarrisonAug 11, 8:37am Top
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185weird_OEdited: Aug 11, 9:50am Top
Mark, I know what a right-thinking, patriotic, ethical, selfless guy you are. Your nation NEEDS postmen of your ilk to ensure a fair election in November. Making sure each and every ballot is collected and delivered to the election officials who will ensure each and every ballot is counted. I know you'll find it an honor and a privilege to postpone your retirement just two months and change to guarantee the integrity of this very very very important election.

If you do, every member of LT—not just the 75ers, but each and every LT member—will buy you a beer. Might even slip you a book or two.

Think about it, my friend. I know you'll choose wisely.
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186laytonwoman3rdAug 11, 10:46am Top
>185 weird_O: Oooh....very good, Bill. I know Mark (and to be fair, our own inestimable rural mail carrier, Maureen) can save the day.
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187msf59Aug 11, 5:44pm Top
>182 richardderus: I like the way you think, Richard. Ooh, thanks for the heads-up on The End of Vandalism. I hope you snagged a copy.

>183 karenmarie: Hi, Karen. I always enjoy your bird feeder report. I am sure you saw an Indigo Bunting. You described it perfectly. We see them here but I have never seen them at our feeders. Congrats.
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188m.belljacksonAug 11, 5:56pm Top
Mark - today's LitHubDaily (August 11)

features finding a Fish Owl!

- as well as some funny and haunting actors rated in 40 HAMLETS.
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189msf59Edited: Aug 11, 5:58pm Top
>183 karenmarie: Howdy, Bill. Knowing you, for several years, including a face to face Meet-Up, is that my first impression on your thoughtful comments, is that you are kidding around. I completely agree, that this is a pivotal moment for the post office, mail-in voting and future elections, but my influence, especially in a solid Blue State would be nearly non-existent. I have total faith in my fellow mail-carriers and the post office, in general. I am outta heer on the 31st.

>185 weird_O: I will be rootin' for the P.O. from the comfort of my home, Linda, come November. B.A.G.
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190msf59Edited: Aug 11, 7:15pm Top

"More than just a classic political novel, Warren’s tale of power and corruption in the Depression-era South is a sustained meditation on the unforeseen consequences of every human act, the vexing connectedness of all people and the possibility—it’s not much of one—of goodness in a sinful world.">

^All The King's Men really doesn't need much introduction. It is considered an American classic novel. I have seen the excellent film adaptation from the 1950s but shockingly, I have never read the book, but that is about to change, thanks to Linda and the AAC. I will be starting the audio tomorrow.
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191msf59Edited: Aug 11, 7:15pm Top
>188 m.belljackson: You slipped in there on me, Marianne. I will try to check out LitHub. Thanks.
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192msf59Edited: Aug 11, 7:23pm Top

^Nice pick, Joe!!
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193banjo123Aug 11, 11:24pm Top
>192 msf59: YES!
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194msf59Aug 12, 6:31am Top
>193 banjo123: High-Five, Rhonda!
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195msf59Edited: Aug 12, 6:32am Top

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196jessibud2Aug 12, 6:54am Top
Mark, you will love this. My friend who lives on a lake, sent me this email last night:

"Saw whet owl crashed into the window and I found it, wings spread, eyes closed, looking gone. I folded its wings in, and cradled it gently for a couple of minutes, then its eyes opened, and it took weight on its legs. After another couple of minutes it flew away. I was thrilled!"

How amazing is that!
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197richardderusAug 12, 7:27am Top
I've got the Drury queued up on the Kindle, the popcorn bowl out for the All the King's Men read, and the crying towel out for >195 msf59:, so my Wednesday's a go.
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198karenmarieAug 12, 8:22am Top
'Morning, Mark! Happy Wednesday and happy short work week.

>192 msf59: I am borrowing that if you don't mind - I'm queuing up my eleventh thread and have swapped out 864511320 and put in Biden Harris 2020.

Not much bird feeder excitement - too many finches, a Carolina cardinal, and one humingbird. I need to fill the feeders.
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199msf59Aug 12, 9:23am Top
>196 jessibud2: I love that story, Shelley. Thanks for sharing. Did you know the saw whet owl, was the very first owl I saw in the wild? And it is easily one of the hardest ones to spot. Glad I got that one out early on.
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200msf59Aug 12, 9:25am Top
>197 richardderus: Morning, RD. I am glad you have the Drury queued up. I have not started the RPW yet, but very soon.

>198 karenmarie: Morning, Karen. Borrow away, my friend. I think I will add the Biden/Harris poster to my future threads.
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201jessibud2Aug 12, 9:32am Top
>19 msf59: - When I asked her how big it was, she said about the size of a grapefruit! Wow. And amazing that you saw it, too!
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202streamsongAug 12, 10:47am Top
Hey Mark - Were you affected by the storm that went through the midwest? I hope all is well!
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203benitastrnadAug 12, 12:00pm Top
All you bird loving book readers out there take a look at this!


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204msf59Aug 12, 4:43pm Top
>201 jessibud2: I think the saw-whet owls are one of the smallest, at least in the northern parts of North America and they like to stay well hidden.

>202 streamsong: Hi, Janet. I drove home in the storm and it was nasty, but it did not hit the area where I live very hard and we did not lose power. Other suburbs had much more damage. Thanks for asking.

>203 benitastrnad: I did see this news, Benita and it is one worth rejoicing. Trump tried to roll back the Migratory Bird Act and failed. Whew! I appreciate you sharing the link.
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205msf59Aug 12, 5:51pm Top

-Keith Taylor
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206jessibud2Aug 12, 5:58pm Top
>205 msf59: - Too little, too late...lol
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207vancouverdebAug 13, 12:24am Top
Stopping by to say hi and I'm so pleased that Biden chose Harris as his running mate. Fingers crossed for November!
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208msf59Edited: Aug 13, 5:55am Top
>206 jessibud2: Amen to that, Shelley!

>207 vancouverdeb: Good to see you, Deb. We are very happy about Biden's pick. Nice to hear smart, coherent people again.
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209Ameise1Aug 13, 7:49am Top
>129 msf59: LOL
Ok, I love all of the comics you posted.
Sweet Thursday.
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210karenmarieAug 13, 8:11am Top
'Morning, Mark! Happy Thursday to you.

I watched Harris speak last night. I never watched the debates and don't watch TV news so have never seen her before. She's a strong speaker, and of course I loved the message.
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211richardderusAug 13, 8:32am Top
>205 msf59: Heh. If only.

Thursday post-derecho coolth wishes, Mark!
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212GeorgeKhanAug 13, 8:35am Top
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213msf59Aug 13, 12:15pm Top
>209 Ameise1: Sweet Thursday, Barb. Good to see you. Glad you like the comics.

>210 karenmarie: Hi, Karen. Harris is a wonderful speaker. She also has a great sense of humor and can be steely tough when she needs to be. I also do not think she is a racist or wants to take away the nation's guns. Grins...

>211 richardderus: Funny, I do not think I had heard the term "derecho" before, RD. I now I can say, I drove through one.
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214StoreetllrAug 13, 12:45pm Top
Hey, Mark! I've been offline for a week or so & have missed a lot. I'm not going to go too far back in your thread, but I just wanted to say (>189 msf59:) that, though I'm alarmed about what is going on at the USPS, I don't blame you for getting out while the getting is good.

>192 msf59: YES! YES! YES!

>211 richardderus: >213 msf59: I've never heard the word "derecho" before either. I'm glad you made it safely through one.
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215msf59Aug 13, 5:30pm Top
>214 Storeetllr: Hi, Mary. Always good to see you. It is hard to keep up around here, so I don't blame you for skipping. Hooray for the Biden/Harris ticket! Let the landslide begin...
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216msf59Edited: Aug 13, 5:42pm Top

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217vancouverdebAug 14, 12:38am Top
I agree, Mark. I'd been delighted to see Hamnet or The Burning on the Booker long list, particularly Hamnet. I bet you'd enjoy How Much of These Hills Is Gold, even though I was not keen on it. Sort of a western and according to one review, for readers of Cormac McCarthy and some other writer who's name escapes me now.
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218msf59Aug 14, 6:23am Top
>217 vancouverdeb: Thanks for the clarification on How Much of These Hills Is Gold, Deb. I did see your somewhat lukewarm review but you now sparked my interest.
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219msf59Edited: Aug 14, 7:56am Top

^I know there are many George Saunders in the group. This is his current newsletter, which is a joy to read. He discusses his upcoming book, "Swim in a Pond in the Rain" and he shares a wonderful story about Biden and reading Lincoln in the Bardo. He also takes a shot at Trump. Check it out:

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220karenmarieAug 14, 7:43am Top
'Morning, Mark, and happy Friday to you. I hope you are able to get out to do a bit of birding today. Plus all the other Bs... *smile*

>219 msf59: Thank you for the link to George Saunders' newsletter. I just read it, was thrilled by pretty much every word he wrote, and immediately pre-ordered A Swim in a Pond in the Rain, which doesn't have a touchstone yet and which will arrive on my doorstep on January 12th.

I was one of the folks who loved Lincoln in the Bardo. I've read it and listened to it while re-reading it, and come to think of it, it may be a very good book to re-listen/read this year.
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221msf59Aug 14, 7:52am Top
Morning, Karen. I will definitely be getting out for some birding. Hooray for another George Saunders fan! We are legion. I also loved Lincoln on audio. Wow!
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222jnwelchAug 14, 8:15am Top
Happy Friday, Mark.

Things are getting back to normal here. Have you ever been to the Bunker Hill nature preserve? In Nile, I think. That's probably the one we'll try next week. Last week we got a kick out of the one alongside the Rosehill Cemetery - West Ridge? Kind of a pocket nature preserve tucked into a busy part of the city.

I thoroughly enjoyed Jane Mount's Bibliophile (hard to imagine not), read in bits and pieces over many months. Yes, I managed to add to my WL, thanks to it. I can't remember whether you got caught up in the Ruth Galloway mysteries love, but I'm now caught up in the newest, Lantern Men. Should make for good weekend reading.

Looks like another decent day, thank goodness. Hope it goes well for you.
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223m.belljacksonAug 14, 10:58am Top
Mark and Joe and other Hummingbird lovers -
today's online My Moder ( )
  msf59 | Aug 16, 2020 |
Paul Auster much? ( )
  Adammmmm | Sep 10, 2019 |
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The Raw Shark Texts manages to reach the loftiest goal of speculative fiction: making its outlandish situations illuminate real human emotion. When the second Sanderson begins to share his previous incarnation's affecting grief over his lost love Clio, the concept of a memory-eating shark takes on additional layers of significance.

Comparisons with The Matrix, Fight Club and Memento have been thrown around, and it's telling that all these action-thrillers were on the big screen. The prose is often self-important and less brilliant than the situations it describes, and many of the story elements dogmatically adhere to Hollywood conventions. But Hall borrows a number of effective techniques from film. A metaphysical book such as this easily could have become dense and inaccessible, but Hall's unrelenting focus on visual storytelling keeps it lucid.

The book fully succeeds in exploring the tenuous hold we have on our sense of self, which is, after all, only "a concept wrapped in skin and chemicals."
adicionado por sduff222 | editarUSA Today, Eliot Schrefer (Apr 24, 2007)
The rest of Hall's ambitiously conceived but irritatingly self-serious novel concerns Sanderson's "Jaws"-like quest to put an end to the shark before it eats him, punctuated by a stock romantic plot and pictorial games that include a flip-book shark attack. Oddly, given all the textual high jinks, Hall's weakness for ending chapters on cliffhangers suggests that his book may actually wish it were a film.
adicionado por sduff222 | editarThe New Yorker (Apr 9, 2007)
Quirky even for metafiction--the novel includes abstract diagrams and flipbooks--Hall's debut can be confusing. But when he hits his stride, particularly during a climactic manversus-shark chase on the high seas, Texts is exhilarating. B+
adicionado por sduff222 | editarEntertainment Weekly, Karen Leigh (Apr 6, 2007)
Though Hall's prose is flabby and the plethora of text-based sight gags don't always work (a 50-page flipbook of a swimming shark, for instance), the end result is a fast-moving cyberpunk mashup of Jaws, Memento and sappy romance that's destined for the big screen.
adicionado por sduff222 | editarPublishers Weekly (Jan 15, 2007)
First things first, stay calm." So reads a cryptic letter early in The Raw Shark Texts, but it's difficult not to get worked up by Steven Hall's dizzying debut novel. Already the object of a bidding war among filmmakers, the book grabs readers with a series of set-ups reminiscent of everything from Jaws to Memento.
adicionado por sduff222 | editarKirkus Reviews (Jan 15, 2007)
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For Stanley Hall
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"Since I've left home on this journey, I've thought a lot about this–how a big part of any life is about the hows and the whys of setting up machinery. It's building systems, devices, motors. Winding up the clockwork of direct debits, configuring newspaper deliveries and anniversaries and photographs and credit card repayments and anecdotes. Starting their engines, setting them in motion and sending them chugging off into the future to do their thing at regular or irregular intervals. When a person leaves or dies or ends, they leave an afterimage; their outline in the devices they've set up around them. The image fades to the winding down of springs, the slow running out of fuel as the machines of a life lived in certain ways in certain places and from certain angles are shut down or seize up or blink off one by one. It takes time. Sometimes, you come across the dusty lights or electrical hum of someone else's machine, maybe a long time after you ever expected to, still running, lonely in the dark. Still doing its thing for the person who started it up long, long after they've gone."
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Eric Sanderson wakes up in a place he doesn't recognise, unable to remember who he is. Attacked by a force he cannot see and confronted with memories he cannot ignore, Eric discovers he is being hunted by a psychic predator, a shark. This creature may exist only in his mind, but it soon starts making some very real appearances in his world.

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