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February Nightstand

Hard to believe that February is just about over.  Which of course means that it is time for What’s on Your Nightstand over at 5 Minutes for Books.  I am trying to get better at posting here regularly so this makes my second month in a row doing the WOYN.  Not great but a start.

What was on my list to read this month?

Finished:

  • Persian Food from the Non-persian Bride: And Other Sephardic Kosher Recipes You Will Love by Reyna Simnegar.  So many wonderful recipes and stories about Persian Jews.  YUMMY!  Sadly this one did not live up to my expectations.  While I enjoyed some of the recipes I found some of the sidebars and stories unnecessary and offputting.
  • The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson.  A coke addict drives his car off a cliff during a drug induced hallucination.  He suffers horrific injuries from the accident and while recovering meets a woman who claims to know him.  Not bad, not great.  A good read.  I think listening to it for me was the right choice.  It was long and I might have lost interest in the convoluted storyline had I not been listening to it.  It is gory at times and you need to definitely suspend your belief in reality to go with the story but I’m not sure I got all the references to Dante and the various philosophical/religious overtones. I don’t really wish to analyze any book I read that much.
  • A Perfect Blood.  Kim Harrison.  Book 1o in the Rachel Morgan series. AMAZING!:
Put aside:
  • The Paris Wife.  Paula McLain.  Next book for our book group.  I didn’t finish this as much as skim it.  It was okay.  Nothing that I would have picked up on my own.
Still working on

Up next month:

  • Book group pick is One Thousand White Women: The Journals of May Dodd.  Jim Fergus.  One Thousand White Women begins with May Dodd’s journey west, into the unknown. Yet the unknown is a far better fate than the life she left behind: committed to an insane asylum by her blueblood family for the crime of loving a man beneath her station, May finds that her only hope of freedom is to participate in a secret government program whereby women from the “civilized” world become the brides of Cheyenne warriors. What follows is the story of May’s breathtaking adventures: her brief, passionate romance with the gallant young army captain John Bourke; her marriage to the great chief Little Wolf; and her conflict of being caught between two worlds, loving two men, living two lives.  Sounds good.  We’ll see.
  • Think Like a Chef.  Tom Colicchio.  Love him on Top Chef so I figured I would check out his cookbook.
  • The Future of Us.  Jay Asher.  A teen book.   It’s 1996, and less than half of all American high school students have ever used the Internet. Emma just got her first computer and Josh is her best friend. They power up and log on–and discover themselves on Facebook, fifteen years in the future. Everybody wonders what their Destiny will be. Josh and Emma are about to find out.
  • Cleopatra’s Moon.  Vicky Shecter.  Another retelling of what happens to Cleopatra’s daughter Selene after Cleopatra dies and her children are taken to Rome.
  • Just My Type.  Simon Garfield.   A book about fonts.  Seems interesting.
  • The Throne of Fire.  Rick Riordan. The second book in the Kane Chronicles.  Not as good as the Percy Jackson or the Lost Heroes but a fun romp through the mythology of Egypt.  Listening to this in the car.  Almost done.

That’s what’s on my nightstand.  What’s on yours?

 

 

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March Nightstand

5 Minutes for Books runs a ton of reading challenges.  What’s On Your Nightstand is a monthly recap of what you are reading, have read and want to read in the next month.  I’ve tried doing this before and always fall short of my goals because I get so sidetracked.  Books that weren’t on my list at all end up being read while some on the list get pushed aside and so on.  But…I’ll give it a whirl again because it is fun.  Plus I like talking about books.

Books  Read or Listened to in March

The Devil Wears Prada.  Lauren Weisberger.  I listened to this.  It was hilarious and just fun.   I don’t know why I hadn’t read it earlier.  Now I want to see the movie.

The Art of Racing in the Rain. Garth Stein.  This was a book club pick.  I wasn’t thrilled with the choice at first.  The idea of the book being narrated by a dog didn’t bother me, the car racing did.  In the end I did enjoy it.  The dog as a narrator allowed the reader to be witness to things they otherwise never would be.  It was sad though.

Sphinx’s Princess.  Esther Friesner.  A teen book about Nefertiti as a child and young adult before she was Queen.  I’m about a third into it and am enjoying it.  Having read Michele Moran’s books about Nefertiti and her family I am familiar with the gods/goddesses and many of the names so it isn’t nearly as confusing as the first book about Ancient Egypt that I read.  I enjoy this time period but I also enjoy the fictionalized stories of these strong women characters that history only has footnotes for.  The second one in the series, Sphinx’s Queen came out earlier this year so I am eager to finish this one up and get to the next.

Sing Me Home.  Jodi Picoult.  Her latest.  This one is about a married couple reeling from a stillbirth after many years of infertility.  The loss is too great and they divorce.  The woman falls into a relationship with another woman and wants to start a family with the frozen embryos remaining from her and her ex-husband’s attempts at IVF.  A lawsuit ensues.  I confess that  I skipped to the very last page and read the ending but now being not quite halfway done I do want to finish it and find out how they got where they ended up.

What didn’t get read

Bright young things.  Anna Godbersen.  It is set in NY during the end of the Roaring Twenties and the Jazz age.  It is the coming of age story of three young women.  It sounds like it should be a fun read.

Surviving the angel of death : the story of a Mengele twin in Auschwitz. Eva Mozes Kor.  This one is another teen book but this one is not going to be a fun read.  I’ve always been slightly fascinated with twins though not in the way that Mengele was.  I want to read this because it is told through the eyes of Eva as a child.  She is still alive today and an incredible inspiration.

Madame Tussaud: A Novel of the French Revolution. Michelle Moran. No real reason why I put this down except that something new and shiny came along.  I do want to read this for the same reasons that I want to finish the Sphinx’s Princess.  Madam Toussand was a fascinating person during a crazy time in history.  What secrets did she see as she sculpted Marie Antoinette’s wax statues?

I think that is about all for now.  The I want to read pile is way too big to tackle.    So, what’s on your nightstand?

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