Current Reads

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Re: Current Reads

Post  punzy on Fri Dec 04, 2015 11:16 pm

Literally just started reading that this evening. And bought it for the same reason!

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Re: Current Reads

Post  Algae on Sat Dec 05, 2015 1:37 pm

Queen Six, I did the same thing. It was a fun read and I really liked Lainey.

Made me in the mood for more "actors with arranged relationships", so I started listening to What I Did For Love, but I'm not enjoying it as much.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  mokey75 on Sun Dec 06, 2015 12:54 pm

Did anyone bother with The Girl in the Spider's Web, the "continuation" of the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series? I'm about a hundred pages in and it's so freaking boring. I can't decide if I should bother to keep going or just give up. There's like a million characters, none of them all that compelling yet, and not enough Salander.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  MaddyCat on Sat Dec 19, 2015 6:52 pm

Currently halfway through Girl Waits With Gun and am enjoying it. It's set in the early 1900s and follows a trio of sisters who find themselves the target of the douchebag son of a rich family. Danger ensues, secrets are revealed, and a girl does indeed wait with a gun. We'll see what happens in the back half but so far I'd recommend this. And the cover is lovely. Just saying.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  whatthedeuce on Sat Dec 19, 2015 7:55 pm

I've got that book waiting for me at the library! I'm excited to get started on it, and I agree that the cover is lovely!

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Re: Current Reads

Post  sagitare on Sun Dec 20, 2015 3:36 pm

I just finished Girl Waits With Gun and rather enjoyed it. I liked that the writer plays the whole thing in a more understated  way rather than pushing the characterizations and situations too far into cliche territory. Constance, for example, is a believably independent, strong, and modern woman within the context of her era (and not a character who feels like she belongs in 2015, if you know what I mean). And I quite liked how Stewart portrays the
Spoiler:
attraction between her and the Sheriff Heath, keeping it subtle and letting it add a really interesting layer to the story but not allowing it to overshadow everything else.

Additionally, Stewart handles the
Spoiler:
reveal of Fleurette as Constance's daughter really well, and that definitely could have been something that would have overwhelmed the main narrative. Instead, Stewart is able to use it to add believable context and emotional weight to the sub-story of Lucy Blake's missing son, while also adding a few layers to the characterization of the Kopp sisters. Really well done, I thought.

I think Stewart's shown herself to be a very thoughtful and measured writer with this novel, and I'll be tuning in to the next one to see where she takes these characters.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  ulkis on Thu Dec 24, 2015 1:34 am

I decided to read Girl With Gun based on what you guys said about it and I liked it a lot, although the prose is a bit . . . I don't know how to describe it, I feel like a lot of novels nowadays kind of try too hard to make prose quirky for lack of a better word. But I liked it a lot and bonus for me, it took place in New Jersey so I knew a lot of the landmarks.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  QueenSix on Thu Dec 24, 2015 4:07 pm

I read Liane Moriarty's What Alice Forgot this week and I found it very engrossing. In that, I pretty much blew my whole day to sit and read it even though I had baking and what not to do at home but I got that done after 11pm because that's how I roll when a good book is there.

I found the book engrossing in that I wanted to find out what happened to all of them and I was interested in their story but I found the characters a bit...frustrating? I mean, I understood how things could have gotten the way they did in all their lives but there were things like
Spoiler:
Alice coming out of the hospital and her family leaving her at home alone to await the return of her kids whose names she barely remembered, never mind remembering giving birth to them.
So they annoyed me at times but at the same time I was sympathetic but at the same time again I was thinking these were people who could probably have solved a lot of their problems if they'd sat down and actually talked to one another honestly. But then again, that's easy to say because sometimes you don't want to aggravate things by speaking up...etc etc.

So yeah. I had a lot of thoughts after reading that book.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  MaddyCat on Thu Dec 31, 2015 6:20 pm

My last book of 2015 is Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff, which has gotten a lot of attention (not the least of which was Obama naming it his fave book of the year). It was really good. Where the story sometimes broke down for me--I did roll my eyes a few times--the writing saved everything. Groff can f'ing write and it elevated the story well beyond your average tale of a marriage. I liked the second half (the wife's part) the best but thought the book as a whole was worth it--horrifying, amusing, melodramatic, witty, twisty.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  whatthedeuce on Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:10 pm

Totally just got from the library and am so psyched to start on it tomorrow! Girl Waits With Gun was great, so I recommend it to one and all! I really loved the dynamic between Sheriff Heath and Constance. It felt authentic and palpable, and they mutually respected one another, which I thought was super cool. He didn't condescend to her or her sisters, and also I loved how different the sisters' personalities were.


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Re: Current Reads

Post  MaddyCat on Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:56 pm

I loved Sheriff Heath and I loved his dynamic with Constance and with all the sisters. That book was just plain good--it was told in a steady voice, which I liked, because it easily could have descended into melodrama.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  rivki8699 on Thu Jan 14, 2016 10:14 pm

QueenSix wrote:Act Like It by Lucy Parker was reviewed on Smart Bitches and I thought, oh that sounds like something I'd enjoy reading, and then I left it at that. Then there were more tweets by people saying how much they loved the book and I thought, oh I should really buy that then because I'm in the mood for something that's a fun interesting read, so I did.

TL;DR: I bought a book.

So anyway, I REALLY loved it.

I bought it on Smart Bitches' recommendation, and then stopped when
Spoiler:
the heroine accidentally let slip that the hero's father committed suicide. I have a serious squick about betrayal of trust (even though this was obviously inadvertant and well meaning).
Can you tell me how that part of the story resolves? Otherwise I think it's going to be a DNF.
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Re: Current Reads

Post  salamandersam on Sat Jan 16, 2016 11:22 am

My favorite book of 2015 was The Golem and the Genni by Helene Wecker. For some reason, that book is sticking with me months after finishing it. I heard about it on Pop Culture Happy Hour and am so glad I read it. It's the story of a clay woman and a man made of fire, set in New York around 1900. It doesn't get bogged down with trying to make it seem historical, and the characters resonated with me.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  MaddyCat on Sat Jan 16, 2016 8:01 pm

I think my favorite of 2015 was probably Fates and Furies. I continue to reflect on it and lines/descriptions have stuck in my head, something that rarely happens. For example, a character describes looking at her champagne glass and seeing the bubbles "flea-jumping" out of it. Gorgeous and accurate! But really in 2015 I read a lot of 4-star books and rather few 5-stars, so I'm hoping for a better 2016 reading year.

Right now reading a book called Disclaimer about a women who reads a book and realizes, to her horror, that it's about a long-kept secret from her past, down to what she wore the day the "thing" occurred. It then becomes a crash course between her and the writer. So far it's good and creepy. I think the premise is really great.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  RiverThames on Sat Jan 16, 2016 8:16 pm

My favorites of 2015 are probably absurdly biased. :)
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Re: Current Reads

Post  punzy on Sat Jan 16, 2016 8:48 pm

rivki8699 wrote:
QueenSix wrote:Act Like It by Lucy Parker was reviewed on Smart Bitches and I thought, oh that sounds like something I'd enjoy reading, and then I left it at that. Then there were more tweets by people saying how much they loved the book and I thought, oh I should really buy that then because I'm in the mood for something that's a fun interesting read, so I did.

TL;DR: I bought a book.

So anyway, I REALLY loved it.

I bought it on Smart Bitches' recommendation, and then stopped when
Spoiler:
the heroine accidentally let slip that the hero's father committed suicide. I have a serious squick about betrayal of trust (even though this was obviously inadvertant and well meaning).
Can you tell me how that part of the story resolves? Otherwise I think it's going to be a DNF.

It has been a while but from what I remember
Spoiler:
it comes out in public, he gets really mad (justifiably!) and they break up for a bit while everyone works on their emotional issues.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  Gallifrey Girl on Sat Jan 16, 2016 8:54 pm

Disclaimer sounds really interesting! Let us know what you thought when you're done it!

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Re: Current Reads

Post  sagitare on Sat Jan 16, 2016 11:45 pm

salamandersam wrote:My favorite book of 2015 was The Golem and the Genni by Helene Wecker.  For some reason, that book is sticking with me months after finishing it. I heard about it on Pop Culture Happy Hour and am so glad I read it.  It's the story of a clay woman and a man made of fire, set in New York around 1900.  It doesn't get bogged down with trying to make it seem historical, and the characters resonated with me.
That sounds incredibly unique and interesting so I've added it my reading list. Thanks for mentioning it!
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Re: Current Reads

Post  Algae on Mon Jan 18, 2016 10:02 am

I just finished Station Eleven and loved it. Beautiful imagery, just enough spookiness to keep me wanting to hear more (audiobook). Of course, I caught a cold in the middle of the story, so every sniffle had me convinced that death was imminent.

I also just finished Furiously Happy. Some parts were laugh out loud ridiculous, and others were too close to home.

Disclaimer sounds really good.

As for favorites of 2015, probably The Martian (I became slightly obsessed with that one to the chagrin and eventual enjoyment of my friends and family as they succumbed).



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Re: Current Reads

Post  inversed on Mon Jan 18, 2016 10:29 am

I really tried to like Furiously Happy, but something about her writing style just felt like she was trying too hard to be off-the-wall. I mean, maybe she really does think like that but it just didn't feel natural for me, and I was too exhausted to keep reading after a few chapters. Which was disappointing, because as a fellow depressio, I was looking forward to reading it.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  mayram on Tue Jan 19, 2016 5:38 pm

inversed wrote:I really tried to like Furiously Happy, but something about her writing style just felt like she was trying too hard to be off-the-wall. I mean, maybe she really does think like that but it just didn't feel natural for me, and I was too exhausted to keep reading after a few chapters. Which was disappointing, because as a fellow depressio, I was looking forward to reading it.

I just looked it up (along with all the others, I love this thread for new book finds!) and the "look inside" paragraph tells me that I'd probably see it the same way you did:

But terrible ideas are what Jenny does best.

As Jenny says:

"Some people might think that being 'furiously happy' is just an excuse to be stupid and irresponsible and invite a herd of kangaroos over to your house without telling your husband first because you suspect he would say no since he's never particularly liked kangaroos. And that would be ridiculous because no one would invite a herd of kangaroos into their house. Two is the limit. I speak from personal experience. My husband says that none is the new limit. I say he should have been clearer about that before I rented all those kangaroos.

Granted, it might just be an unfortunate choice of pull quote, but if that's the general style of the book, definitely not for me.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  inversed on Tue Jan 19, 2016 6:43 pm

That's precisely what I found exhausting, mayram. Much of what I read was in that vein, which is why I had to give it up. I felt like she was trying really hard to be the funny kid in class so we'd like her, but it just came off false.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  katesti on Wed Jan 20, 2016 2:07 pm

Man, Jenny Lawson exhausts me too. I read her first book and...I think I didn't finish? I don't even remember, but it definitely wiped me out.

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Re: Current Reads

Post  Algae on Wed Jan 20, 2016 3:34 pm

Several times while reading it, I thought "I am so glad I don't know this person in real life." I guess I enjoyed the stories more as stories and less than true?
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Re: Current Reads

Post  sagitare on Wed Jan 20, 2016 4:13 pm

The weakness of Furiously Happy was, for me, that its format was essentially "blog post collection". That is to say, more jumbled and rambling, with content that often resembled that quoted by Maryam from the "Look Inside" sample. I found that type of writing very tiring. For example, there was one chapter that was, if I remember correctly, a list of the things that come into her head in the middle of the night. It went on for a few pages. I stopped after the first page because the joke, if you will, was worn out by then.

Her first book, Let's Pretend This Never Happened, was much more structured. It was basically an autobiography where her humour and overall writing style worked to gradually build the narrative. There was a point to it, a movement from start to finish. Her second lacked that plan, unfortunately. Some parts were very good, don't get me wrong, but they just popped up randomly. Overall it felt a bit like re-heated leftovers.
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