Read any good books lately?

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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby Catsumi » Jul 22nd, 2018, 6:36 pm

The Romanov Sisters by H. Rappaport, a newish publication focussing on the daughters of the last Tsar of Russsia, (Nicholas II), their upbriniging, personal lives and their very individualist personalities gleaned from historical records, letters and memoires of those who knew them personally and through their work.

This book brought flesh and bones and vibrant life to those ill-fated sisters who died ages 17-23, their foibles, likes and dislikes, habits and work ethics, (the whole family contributed their wealth, time for charitable works, and nursing abilities during WWI), loves and flirtations with their surrounding menfolk consisting of their bodyguards (sailors), the Court and later, their captors. Those girls lived such a sheltered life that they are childlike and childish into adulthood, and yet, they were not entirely blind to what was going on, especially Olga, the oldest, who would have become ruler of Russia (presuming Alexie, her brother, a haemophiliac died of his disease) had it not been decreed that only a male could rule. (Thanks to Catherine the Great's miserable, hateful son who decreed such).

Although she never said it aloud, Olga, it would appear from descriptions of her melancholy, she knew their days were numbered, even before capture. She had, along with all the children, been terribly ill with measles, typhoid and vicious flu illnesses before they fell into the hands of the revolutionists.


This is a good read for those who wish to bring historical figures into focus and back to life, rather than just a collection of meaningless photos that has been the soup de jour for most histories of the last Romanovs.

.......

Added. One of the Tsar's sisters lived out her life in Eastern Canada, in poverty, above a second hand store...from another book whose name eludes me.
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Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm. (W. Churchill)

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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby Lady tehMa » Jul 22nd, 2018, 9:40 pm

Read a very interesting novel by Rowena Miller called "Torn"

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35959724-torn

Torn (The Unraveled Kingdom #1)
by Rowenna Miller

TORN is the first book in an enchanting debut fantasy series featuring a seamstress who stitches magic into clothing, and the mounting political uprising that forces her to choose between her family and her ambitions, for fans of The Queen of the Tearling.

Sophie is a dressmaker who has managed to open her own shop and lift herself and her brother, Kristos, out of poverty. Her reputation for beautiful ball gowns and discreetly-embroidered charms for luck, love, and protection secures her a commission from the royal family itself -- and the commission earns her the attentions of a dashing but entirely unattainable duke.

Meanwhile, Kristos rises to prominence in the growing anti-monarchist movement. Their worlds collide when the revolution's shadow leader takes him hostage and demands that Sophie place a curse on the queen's Midwinter costume -- or Kristos will die at their hand.

As the proletariat uprising comes to a violent climax, Sophie is torn: between her brother and the community of her birth, and her lover and the life she's striven to build.


A really interesting look at fantasy and magic, class relations and uprising . . .
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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby ferri » Jul 23rd, 2018, 6:31 am

I've decided to not bother with the other 2 books. I read the reviews and they don't sound that great. :D

I am still doing catch up reading. Sometime around the age of 10 I went from "Little Women" to reading books in the Adult section of the library. I have no idea why, but I do remember the librarian freaking out. I went from reading kids books right to "Catch 22" and never went back. So NOW I'm reading stuff I probably should have back then. :135: I am reading the "A Wrinkle In Time" series. They are really pretty good even if I'm not a sprout anymore. :D
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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby Lady tehMa » Jul 23rd, 2018, 9:05 am

Some books are classic, quite enjoyable despite your age (or lack thereof).
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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby ferri » Jul 23rd, 2018, 9:35 am

I should have taken a break between the books. I just want to finish now. LOL That's okay though, almost finished with book 5 and then I can worry about which book to read next. :/
“When someone is nasty or treats you poorly, don't take it personally. It says nothing about you, but a lot about them.” ― Michael Josephson

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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby ferri » Jul 30th, 2018, 10:03 am

I just finished The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers

I've heard of this book, but because of the title I always stuck my nose in the air thinking it was a romance. [icon_lol2.gif] It's not. This is really a very good book and one that gave me an all day "book hangover".

To lightening things up I'm reading Floating Dragon by Peter Straub. :D I read it years ago and remembered it was spooky. Just what I need. haha
“When someone is nasty or treats you poorly, don't take it personally. It says nothing about you, but a lot about them.” ― Michael Josephson

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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby Catsumi » Jul 30th, 2018, 11:23 am

I enjoyed it first time, years ago, so rereading William Least Heat Moon's travel saga Blue Highways. A good read for those who enjoy the backroads, little forgotten towns and down to earth folks (like QK and I do). :biggrin:
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Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm. (W. Churchill)

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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby Queen K » Jul 30th, 2018, 12:24 pm

I should re-read it too. I'm sure to see new things I missed in it the first time.
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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby Lady tehMa » Jul 30th, 2018, 8:31 pm

I'm re-reading old favourites. I did get an email from Unbound Worlds with suggestions to read, but I daren't start any new series until my reno is done.

Besides which, I have a few series on my "want to buy" list and I'm running out of space :cry:
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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby just popping in » Jul 31st, 2018, 12:45 pm

In order to rest my mind from everyday thinking, I enjoy mystery novels. To name a few, this year I have read:

Maisie Dobbs series by Jacqueline Winspear - MD is a private investigator after WW1 up to WWII.
Cormoran Strike series by Robert Galbraith a.k.a JK Rowling - he is a private investigator.
A Casual Vacancy also written by JK Rowling after all the Harry Potter books (which I never read).
The President is Missing by Bill Clinton and James Patterson - cyber attack in U.S.

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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby lesliepaul » Jul 31st, 2018, 6:10 pm

If you are a music fan growing up in the 60's and 70's, check out "Sticky Fingers"...…...The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine by Joe Hagan.

Very interesting insight to the beginnings of the magazine and the culture that created it...…...and the created culture.

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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby ferri » Aug 27th, 2018, 11:34 am

I'm here to make a confession. :D

When I was in 7th or 8th grade our teacher handed out the paperback "Cheaper By The Dozen" by Frank B. Gilbreth, Ernestine Gilbreth Carey

I think we were given a week to read it and then hand in a book report. I have no idea why, but I just could not open that book and read it. I don't know if it was the cover or what, but I didn't even attempt to read the book but I somehow managed to read the blurb on the back and write a book report. hahaha I got a B I think. Anyway...this book has haunted me for years. I see it and turn my nose up, but I feel a major twinge of guilt. So not long ago I saw "Cheaper By The Dozen" and the sequel "Belles On Their Toes" really cheap, sold in one download on Amazon. I bought them thinking this could be a way to make me feel really bad everytime I looked through my Kindle for something to read. hahaha

A few days ago I rolled my eyes and opened the bleeping book. Oh man. I have spent a good deal of my life being an absolute idiot. These books are priceless. I actually laugh out loud a lot. If you haven't read them you should. :D
“When someone is nasty or treats you poorly, don't take it personally. It says nothing about you, but a lot about them.” ― Michael Josephson

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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby ferri » Sep 20th, 2018, 10:13 am

:cry: Am I the only one stil reading? hahaha

The other night I saw an ad for a new movie, "White Boy Rick". It looked interesting so I went right to Amazon to see if there was a book and lo and behold, there it was. I bought: "Prisoner of War: The Story of White Boy Rick and the War on Drugs" by Vince Wade

I can't begin to describe the feelings this book evokes! I am mainly so disgusted and enraged by the corruption and sloppiness of the people "in charge". The FBI, the police and mayor of Detroit...it just makes you shake your head until it rattles.

He was 14 when the FBI recruited him. 14

White Boy Rick became the Detroit FBI’s most productive drug informant of the ‘80s, but as the book explains, things went awry amid FBI misdeeds. Rick tried to become a cocaine wholesaler, got caught and has spent 30 years behind bars. He became a Prisoner of War: The War on Drugs. Rick Wershe is the central character in a wide-ranging exploration of the nearly half-century trillion-dollar policy failure known as the War on Drugs. It explains “testilying”, the widespread perjury felony committed by the police in pursuit of drug felonies, it examines CIA pressure to get charges dropped in a Detroit drug case and it shows how a basketball star’s drug death led to mass incarceration.
“When someone is nasty or treats you poorly, don't take it personally. It says nothing about you, but a lot about them.” ― Michael Josephson

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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby Lady tehMa » Sep 21st, 2018, 7:20 am

I have been doing some reading - mostly re-reading my favourites. I picked up the Baker's Boy series by JV Jones - she's quite a good writer. Things don't go as you might expect. Found the first at Restore and then the last two at Ted's.

I have some books at the library to pick up as well - I've got to do that today or tomorrow. With the renovation I've been loath to pick up something from an author I know I like; for fear that I'll not get things done.
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Re: Read any good books lately?

Postby Catsumi » Oct 30th, 2018, 9:50 pm

As you've probably already noted I am a sucker for Russian history so when a 1932 edition of
A PRINCESS IN EXILE written by Marie Pavlovna, Grand Duchess of Russia was wafted under my nose
I couldn't resist asking permission to take it home to read. (From a private library in a heritage home where I do volunteer work on the art collection).

It is out of print now but feel it should be reissued. It is clearly and sensitively written by Marie herself describing her years living in exile under the European royals roofs with her second husband. Her boy from her first marriage was given over to the Swedish royal family, her first husbands family; she rarely got to visit him so their relationship was distant until later years when he was free to come and go as he pleased. A second boy child died after contracting a stomach ailment at age one.

Marie was aunt to Czar Nicholas II (but the same age approximately) and was one of the lucky nobility to escape with her life when the Revolution got underway. She and her husband eventually settled in Paris, short of money and ill equipped to make a living. Through luck she met Coco Channel and began embroidery piecework for Coco, eventually making it into a fairly large concern employing 50 workers. The business should have made loads of money but didn't due to poor management, connivers at every turn and a spendthrift husband who she divorced.

Her jewellry collection was sold off, bit by bit to cover living expenses. This sounds fine until we see that every other previously wealthy Russian was also selling off family jewels and the Paris dealers knew it and paid a fraction of the true values. Where are all those pieces now, I wonder?

She also describes her anguish at the loss of dear family members, shot, imprisoned or worse by the revolutionists even if the murdered ones were innocent of wrongdoing.

She tells of the Russian emigree crowd in Paris who were still set in their ways of class distinction, dreams of overthrowing the socialists, restoring the monarchy by appointing a new Czar (2 Grand Dukes in Paris were eligible for that role) and eventual return to their beloved homeland. Vladimir Nabokov was also part of the Paris crowd at this time ekeing out a thin living by writing articles for literary magazines plus short stories.

Marie eventually made her way to the USA where her memoires were published, and this book is one of three.

Anyway, I just finished reading this worn, somewhat tattered, dusty (sneezy reading) tome and decided to do a search on it. Turns out that it is worth between $800 and $5,000 USD. I must return it to the collection and advise of its monetary value.

:biggrin:
People with opinions just go around bothering each other with them. (S. Gautama)
Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm. (W. Churchill)

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