Saturday 29 June 2024

Six in Six 2024

 
From The Book Jotter

I found this through one of my blogger friends, Emma @ Words and Peace who was made aware of it though Jo @ The Book Jotter. Jo started this in 2012, so congratulations on doing it that long and providing us with a great way to reminisce about our books of the year so far.
She has given us 52 categories from which we can choose six and mention six books that belong into those categories. (But one book can be in several lists, see her rules here).

I have tried to stick to books that I liked but didn't succeed in every category.

Six new authors to me

Fosse, Jon "Morning and Evening " (Morgon og kveld) - 2001 (Goodreads)
Harris, Robert "Fatherland" - 1992
Hyde, Catherine Ryan "When I found you" - 2009
Leky, Mariana "What You Can See From Here" (GE: Was man von hier aus sehen kann) - 2017
Tsumura, Kikuko "There's No Such Thing as an Easy Job" (Konoyoni tayasui shigoto wa na/この世にたやすい仕事はない) - 2015
Uusma, Bea "The Expedition: a Love Story: Solving the Mystery of a Polar Tragedy" (SW: Expeditionen: min kärlekshistoria) - 2013

Six authors I am looking forward to reading more of
Kingsolver, Barbara "Demon Copperhead" - 2022
Orwell, George "The Road to Wigan Pier" - 1937
Şafak, Elif "10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World" - 2019
Taschler, Judith W. "David" (GE: David) - 2017
Towles, Amor "A Gentleman in Moscow" - 2016
Weiler, Jan "The Book of 39 Precious Things" (GE: Das Buch der 39 Kostbarkeiten) - 2011

Six books that took me by the hand and led me into the past
Brontë, Charlotte "The Professor" - 1857
Hamsun, Knut "Growth of the Soil" (NO: Markens Grøde) - 1917
Krall, Hanna "Chasing the King of Hearts" (PL: Król kier znów na wylocie) - 2006
Lessing, Doris "The Grass is Singing" - 1950
Orwell, George "The Road to Wigan Pier" - 1937
Uusma, Bea "The Expedition: a Love Story: Solving the Mystery of a Polar Tragedy" (SW: Expeditionen: min kärlekshistoria) - 2013

Six From the Non-Fiction Shelf
Clinton, Hillary Rodham "It Takes a Village: And Other Lessons Children Teach Us" - 1996
Kerkeling, Hape "Paws off the table! My cats, other cats and me" (GE: Pfoten vom Tisch! Meine Katzen, andere Katzen und ich) - 2021
Tibballs, Geoff "The Good, the Bad and the Wurst. The 100 Craziest Moments from the European Song Contest" - 2016
Tomalin, Claire "Jane Austen - A Life" - 1997
Uusma, Bea "The Expedition: a Love Story: Solving the Mystery of a Polar Tragedy" (SW: Expeditionen: min kärlekshistoria) - 2013
Zierl, Helmut "Follow the Sun. The Summer of my Life" (GE: Follow the Sun. Der Sommer meines Lebens) - 2020

Six classics I have read
Brontë, Charlotte "The Professor" - 1857
Hamsun, Knut "Growth of the Soil" (NO: Markens Grøde) - 1917
Lessing, Doris "The Grass is Singing" - 1950
Orwell, George "The Road to Wigan Pier" - 1937
Shute, Nevil "On the Beach" - 1959 
Yates, Richard "Revolutionary Road" - 1961

Six pretty book covers
Noort, Tamar "Eternity is a good place" (GE: Die Ewigkeit ist ein guter Ort) - 2023
Shute, Nevil "On the Beach" - 1959
 
Taschler, Judith W. "David" (GE: David) - 2017
Towles, Amor "A Gentleman in Moscow" - 2016
Tsumura, Kikuko "There's No Such Thing as an Easy Job" (Konoyoni tayasui shigoto wa na/この世にたやすい仕事はない) - 2015
Wahl, Caroline "22 Lanes" (GE: 22 Bahnen) - 2023

As you can see, I like the covers quite minimalist. My favourite is the one by Caroline Wahl.

If you like the idea as much as I do, go ahead, choose your own "Six in Six" and let Jo know.


Six in Six 2022.
Six in Six 2023.

Friday 28 June 2024

Mid Year Book Freakout Tag 2024


I found this meme on Read with Stefani's page. What a great idea. Here is the original tag. This is my fourth year of participating.

1. Best book you’ve read so far in 2024

Kingsolver, Barbara
"Demon Copperhead" - 2022

Barbara Kingsolver is one of my favourite authors and this retelling of "Damon Copperfield" by one of my favourite classic authors shows this again.

2. Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2024

I haven't read any sequels this year.

3. New release you haven't read yet but want to

Alvarez, Julia "The Cemetery of Untold Stories" - 2024 (Goodreads)
I read her book "In the Time of the Butterflies" which was a very sad story about a dictator and all his terrors. She is a great author and I am looking forward to this book about books.

4. Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

Chevalier, Tracy
"
The Glassmaker" (Goodreads)
Also a fantastic author who has given us so much information about history and how women lived during many different times.

5. Biggest disappointment

Ryan, Donal "The Thing About December" - 2013
A book club book that turned out nothing like I expected, dreary and boring.

6. Biggest surprise

Tsumura, Kikuko "There's No Such Thing as an Easy Job" (Konoyoni tayasui shigoto wa na/この世にたやすい仕事はない) - 2015

Another book club book but this one delivered more than I expected.

7. Favourite new author. (Debut or new to you)

Fosse, Jon "Morning and Evening" (Morgon og kveld) - 2001 (Goodreads)
The latest Nobel Prize laureate. I have to read more by him.

8. Newest fictional crush

Zierl, Helmut "
Follow the Sun. The Summer of my Life" (GE: Follow the Sun. Der Sommer meines Lebens) - 2020
I don't get crushes, I don't read the kind of books that give you crushes. But I saw a reading by the author of this autobiography and talked to him afterwards. He's a famous German actor and I had always liked him but he was actually so NICE that I think this would be my crush.

9. Newest favourite character

Selma from
Leky, Mariana "What You Can See From Here" (GE: Was man von hier aus sehen kann) - 2017

10. Book that made you cry

I grew up with three younger brothers which is probably the reason I don't cry easily but I think people would probably cry over
Harris, Robert "Fatherland" - 1992
Şafak, Elif "10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World" - 2019

11. Book that made you happy

I don't read "happy" books but this is both a funny one and a hymn to cats, so a nice story.
Kerkeling, Hape "Paws off the table! My cats, other cats and me" (GE:
Pfoten vom Tisch! Meine Katzen, andere Katzen und ich) - 2021

12. Favourite Book To Movie Adaptation You Saw This Year?

I have only watched one new movie this year, "The Zone of Interest" (IMDb) It's a fantastic film but I have no idea how good an adaptation it was from this book:
Amis, Martin "The Zone of Interest" - 2014 (Goodreads)
13. Favourite Review You’ve Written This Year?

That would be the same as my favourite book so far.

Kingsolver, Barbara
"Demon Copperhead" - 2022


14. Most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)


Falcones, Ildefonso "The painter of souls" (El pintor de almas) - 2019 (Goodreads)
Such a great author. Isn't it a beautiful cover?

15. What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

I don't have to read any books. However, I am in two book clubs and the next ones we are going to discuss are:
Kapitelman, Dmitrij "Das Lächeln meines unsichtbaren Vaters" [The smile of my invisible father] - 2016
Shute, Nevil "On the Beach" - 1959 
Keyes, Daniel "Flowers for Algernon" - 1959 (Goodreads)

16. Favourite Book Community Member

I need to mention it every year. It is just as impossible as to say which is your favourite child or which is your all-time favourite author or book. There are so many wonderful people in the blogging community.

Books read so far: 40 (last year it was 51)

Mid Year Book Freakout Tag 2023
Mid Year Book Freakout Tag 2022
Mid Year Book Freakout Tag 2021

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I'm not going to tag anyone but I'm sure a few of you will want to do this. So, feel free to follow that idea but, please, let me know. And Stefani, I'm sure she'll like to know how many are picking up that idea.

Thursday 27 June 2024

#ThrowbackThursday. May 2011 Part 4

I've been doing Throwback Thursdays for a while but I noticed that I wrote a lot of reviews in a short time when I first started. One of my blogger friends always posts the reviews of one month but that would be too much. So, these are my reviews from the fourth week of May 2011.

Eliot, George "Daniel Deronda" - 1876
This novel gives a lot of information about life at the time, a lot of history, the problem the Jews had all through the centuries. The author describes the characters extremely well, the problems between the different people are very interesting and everyone seems so alive.

Eliot, George "Middlemarch" - 1871-72
A wonderful book, a must for anyone who loves classic novels.
Next to Jane Austen, George Eliot alias Marian Evans is one of my favourite classic British authors.

Greene, Graham "The End of the Affair" - 1951
This looks like a simple love affair between a man and a married wife. Greene describes a life of misery for both protagonists.

Steinbeck, John "Of Mice and Men" - 1937
This book touches so many subjects, it's amazing. It takes place during the Great Depression and is talks about The migrant workers.

Vargas Llosa, Mario "Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter" (E: La tía Julia y el escribidor) - 1977
The story is based on the author's life, at the age of 18, when
working for a Peruvian radio station, he meets a sister of his aunt who is 14 years his senior and falls in love with her. A Bolivian scriptwriter adds a lot of excitement to everyone's life.

Vargas Llosa, Mario  "The Storyteller" (E: El Hablador) - 1987
A young man leaves Western civilization and lives among the Machiguenga Indians in the jungle of Peru. He becomes their storyteller, a person who passes on their culture's history and belief.

Read my original reviews, the for links click on the titles.

Friday 21 June 2024

Book Quotes

    

"Books are flying carpets into the realm of fantasy." James Daniel

I like that allegory.

"If you are depressed you are living in the past if you are anxious you are living in the future, if you are at peace, you are living in the present." Lao Tzu

He was a smart guy. What was true then, many, many centuries ago, is still true today.

"Every book is a dialogue between author and reader." Ludwig Reiners

And I love talking to all those smart people from now and then.

Find more book quotes here.

Thursday 20 June 2024

#ThrowbackThursday. May 2011 Part 3

I've been doing Throwback Thursdays for a while but I noticed that I wrote a lot of reviews in a short time when I first started. One of my blogger friends always posts the reviews of one month but that would be too much. So, these are my reviews from the third week of May 2011.

Clinton, Hillary Rodham "Living History" - 2003
Whether you like her politics or not, this book is an account of a woman who is very strong and who managed to get to a certain point through studying and hard work.

Du Bois, W.E.B. "The Souls of Black Folk" - 1903
A very thorough and interesting study of black culture in the United States, the achievements and problems of the African American society.

Fredriksson, Marianne "Hanna's Daughters" (S: Anna, Hanna og Johanna) - 1994
A remarkable story about the life of women and how it changed during the last century. The story is situated in Sweden but it could have happened anywhere in Europe.

Hirsi Ali, Ayaan "Nomad: From Islam to America" - 2010
A follow-up to her book "Infidel. My Life". This is an intelligent and courageous woman. She writes in a clear way, some thought, her life in Somalia was the most interesting part, the different views and culture.

Lewis, Oscar "Children of Sanchez" - 1961
This is an anthropological documentary about a family from a slum in Mexico City, a father and his four children who grow up in poverty.

Lukas, Michael David "The Oracle of Stamboul" - 2011
Istanbul, at the end of the 19th century. A young Jewish girl is born in what now is Romania, her mother dies in childbirth and the girl ends up in Muslim Istanbul. An amazing story like from 1001 Nights.

Read my original reviews, the for links click on the titles.

Monday 17 June 2024

Paretti, Sandra "The Wishing Tree"

Paretti, Sandra "The Wishing Tree" (German: Der Wunschbaum) - 1975

Actually nothing more than a love story that I read many years ago. Could also have been a threepenny novel.

The English subtitle actually says it all: "The Saga of a Woman and her Family and a Dream That Wouldn't Die". The cover photo on the English edition does the rest.

But I know that there are readers who like this type of literature. Because, otherwise, it was well written.

From the back cover:

"In 1900 Camilla Hofmann is seventeen. The home of her parents is in Berlin's Steglitz. It's a big house with a park around it. Her father goes bankrupt, the family business is lifted, the main house is sold and the family falls apart. Camilla, the youngest, is nothing else but the memory ... and the desire ever to get back in that house in Steglitz and be able to sit under the big lime tree which is told that he wishes come true can let go."

Thursday 13 June 2024

#ThrowbackThursday. May 2011 Part 2

I've been doing Throwback Thursdays for a while but I noticed that I wrote a lot of reviews in a short time when I first started. One of my blogger friends always posts the reviews of one month but that would be too much. So, these are my reviews from the second week of May 2011.

Becker, Jurek "Jacob the Liar" (GE: Jakob der Lügner) - 1969
An occupant of the Warsaw ghetto tries to help his fellow Jews sustain life by telling them lies about the Russians being almost there to liberate them.

Falcones, Ildefonso "Cathedral of the Sea" (E: La catedral del mar) - 2008
One of the best historical novels ever. Barcelona in the 14th century, in the middle of the time of the Inquisition. A church is being built. The story of the people involved with the building.

Lewycka, Marina "Two Caravans" (aka Strawberry Fields) - 2007
This book describes the life of Ukrainians (and Polish) seasonal/migrant workers in England.

Proulx, Annie "The Shipping News" - 2003
Quoyle, an ordinary guy, moves with his aunt and his daughters to his ancestral home in Newfoundland where he works for a local newspaper.

Şafak, Elif
"Araf" (aka The Saint of Incipient Insanities) - 2004
A book about foreigners living in the United States. Three roommates from Turkey, Morocco and Spain in Boston, one has  a Mexican-American, another an American girlfriend. All of them have to fit into the society they are in,

Stone, Irving "The Agony and the Ecstasy" - 1961

A book about the life and art of Michelangelo.

Read my original reviews, for the links click on the titles.

Monday 10 June 2024

Şafak, Elif "10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World"

Şafak, Elif "10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World" - 2019

"Now he has again preceded me a little in parting from this strange world. This has no importance. For people like us who believe in physics, the separation between past, present and future has only the importance of an admittedly tenacious illusion." Albert Einstein upon the death of his closest friend, Michele Besso

This is my fifth novel by Elif Şafak and I have enjoyed them all tremendously. Well, as far as you can talk about enjoyment when reading about the murder of a woman.

We follow Leila from the minute of her birth until several minutes after her death and then her friends. We learn about the way she lived, how she ended up in her situation, how her friends found themselves in their situations. We hear about Istanbul and Leila's hometown Van in Eastern Anatolia, right near the border to Iran.

The idea that you can still be conscious several minutes after your death is something I had never heard of before. But this gives us an opportunity to get all aspects of Leila's life and death, that of her friends and how she met them. All of them social outcasts, they form their own kind of family and fight for it, even beyond death.

The book is divided into three parts, each of them different from the other but they all contribute to our understanding of the life.

In the first part, we read about Leila's thoughts in the first minutes after her death, she thinks about her family and her friends. All the memories are included in the story. In the second part, Leila is dead and we follow her friends who try to bury her somewhere decent. The third part is about Leila's soul.

This novel is extraordinary. An extraordinary book about an extraordinary woman in an extraordinary town.

Book Description:

"'In the first minute following her death, Tequila Leila's consciousness began to ebb, slowly and steadily, like a tide receding from the shore...'

For Leila, each minute after her death recalls a sensuous memory: spiced goat stew, sacrificed by her father to celebrate the birth of a yearned-for son; bubbling vats of lemon and sugar to wax women's legs while men are at prayer; the cardamom coffee she shares with a handsome student in the brothel where she works. Each fading memory brings back the friends she made in her bittersweet life - friends who are now desperately trying to find her …

10 Minutes 38 Seconds in This Strange World is an intensely powerful and richly evocative novel from one of the greatest storytellers of our time."

Friday 7 June 2024

Book Quotes

    

"To know that we know what we know, and to know that we do not know what we do not know, that is true knowledge." Nicolaus Copernicus

I know that I know nothing. Another quote by a smart guy, Socrates. He was so right then as he is now.

"If books could have more, give more, be more, show more, they would still need readers who bring to them sound and smell and light and all the rest that can’t be in books. The book needs you. " Gary Paulsen


That's a good point. I'm glad I can contribute to the meaning of existence for books.

"Too much of anything is bad, but too many books is barely enough." N.N.

Definitely true.

Find more book quotes here.

Thursday 6 June 2024

#ThrowbackThursday. May 2011

I've been doing Throwback Thursdays for a while but I noticed that I wrote a lot of reviews in a short time when I first started. One of my blogger friends always posts the reviews of one month but that would be too much. So, these are my reviews from the first week of May 2011.

Haddon, Mark "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time" - 2003
The author tries to highlight that autistic figure/feel and accomplishes it very well. The book was written very discreetly, you could notice that he worked with children. One would have thought Mark Haddon had the syndrome himself.

Kidd, Sue Monk "The Secret Life of Bees" - 2002
The story of Lily from South Carolina, an abused child who lost her mother, and three African-American beekeeping sisters who help her growing up.

Lamb, Christina "The Sewing Circles of Herat: A Personal Voyage Through Afghanistan" - 2002
This was by far the best one of the books I read about Afghanistan.  Christina Lamb is a journalist who knows her job.

Mann, Thomas "Buddenbrooks: The Decline of a Family" (German: Buddenbrooks) - 1901
I have read "Buddenbrooks" a couple of times and think this is one of the best books of German literature. It is usually described as Thomas Mann's masterpiece. The author is definitely one of Germany's most famous and best writers. The novel, an epic story, dates from 1901 and describes the life in a wealthy merchant family over several decades from the 1800s until the beginning of the twentieth century.

Mosse, Kate "Labyrinth" - 2005
A story about history and architecture, a story that spans over 800 years. Historical events from the 13th century are described.

Waltari, Mika "The Egyptian" (Finnish: Sinuhe Egyptiläinen) - 1945
The author studied ancient cultures and theology and the facts in this book are accurate. He couldn't print war books at the time, so instead he wrote this one. The book covers not only Egyptian history but also everything about the human nature, its goodness and its cruelty.

Waltari, Mika "The Dark Angel" (Finnish: Johannes Angelos) - 1952
A lot of the author's novels have a religious background, there is always an issue of faith in his books. His language is great and he teaches a lot about churches and the background of their history. His books are very detailed and accurate. This novel is situated in Constantinople during its fall in 1453.

Woolf, Virginia "To the Lighthouse" - 1927
This wonderful book was almost like poetry. The style was wonderful. Virginia Woolf describes the people most beautifully, the feelings, the thoughts, the way she describes the changes, the atmosphere, how they looked at each other, you can recognize it in your own life.

Woolf, Virginia "Mrs. Dalloway" - 1925
This is supposed to be Virginia Woolf's greatest novel, a book about the life of a woman, a single day in the life of a woman. A "higher class" woman at the beginning of the last century preparing a party and seeing it through.

Read my original reviews, the for links click on the titles.

Wednesday 5 June 2024

Krall, Hanna "Chasing the King of Hearts"

Krall, Hanna "Chasing the King of Hearts" (Polish: Król kier znów na wylocie) - 2006

This was our international online book club book for May 2024.

The life story of a Jewish woman who loses all her family in the Holocaust. Except for her husband. She is sure he is still alive and she looks for him everywhere.

In the description it says this is a beautiful love story. And it is. In a way. Just not what you would usually expect from a love story. And the style is completely different. It reads like diary. But it's more than that. Quite interesting.

It's amazing what a human being can do in order to save their loved ones.

A good book about a strong woman.

Comments from members:

For me the topic of the WWII in books is very unwelcome as I have a great imagination and empathy, but in this book I really liked how the author scaled back on the emotions in the writing, not wallowing in the horrors, yet still showing very skillfully the realities of the war.

The story was interesting historically and serendipitously.

Smart choices and having a clear purpose helped make hard things easier for the lead character, while others turned the difficulties and how to survive mentally into blaming others.

From the back cover:

"An extraordinary love story, spanning 60 years, from 1939 to 2000, from the Warsaw Ghetto to Israel.

'This is the last leg of my journey. It would be silly to lose my mind now.' After the deportation of her husband to Auschwitz, Izolda Regenberg, alias Maria Pawlicka, has only one aim: to free her husband. Her race to beat fate might appear absurd to others, but not to her. In times of war and destruction she learns to trust herself.

Why Peirene chose to publish this book:


'This is a beautiful love story. A story which makes one weep for mankind. While Hanna Krall's terse prose is designed to convey the utter desperation of war, her deft touch evokes hope and a sense of homecoming.' Meike Ziervogel"

Tuesday 4 June 2024

Top 5 Tuesday ~ Red


Top Five Tuesday was originally created by Shanah @ Bionic Book Worm, but is now hosted by Meeghan @ Meeghan Reads. To participate, link your post back to Meeghan’s blog or leave a comment on her weekly post. I found this on Davida's Page @ The Chocolate Lady.

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This week’s topic is Red Books. Meeghan says: "June’s flower of the month is the rose, and the fruit of the month is pomegranate. So, we are doing our top 5 red books."

I have found plenty of books with a lot of read on the title but I chose the ones that are entirely red with just the title on them.

Döblin, Alfred "Berlin Alexanderplatz" (GE: Berlin Alexanderplatz) - 1929

Mahfouz, Naguib "Midaq Alley" (arab: زقاق المدق/Zuqaq El Midaq) - 1947

Marini, Lorenzo "The Man of the Tulips" (IT: L'uomo dei tulipani) - 2002

Marx, Karl; Engels, Friedrich "The Communist Manifesto" (GE: Das kommunistische Manifest) - 1848

Wodehouse, P.G. "The World of Jeeves" (The Inimitable Jeeves #2) - 1923

They are all very different but all great books.

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🌹Happy Reading!🌹
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