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Bookboss

Bookboss

Joined May 2016

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Bookboss
Tender Is the Flesh | Agustina Bazterrica
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The setting is a dystopian near-future where animals have been eradicated because of a virus, so the populace has begun to raise humans as a source of meat. The protagonist works at a processing plant, and is having some problems with his work and family. This novel has some truly horrific scenes that demonstrate man‘s capabilities for compartmentalization and violence toward people and animals. This is not a book for the sensitive reader.

Reggie Oh man, I let 2 coworkers borrow this and one of them this week said he hasn‘t eaten meat yet. Lol I loved this book. 1d
33 likes1 comment
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Bookboss
Demon Copperhead: A Novel | Barbara Kingsolver
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To celebrate Small Business Saturday I visited three independent bookstores! Fellowship Point was a free book! The store had a giveaway box for Small Business Saturday!

BkClubCare 👏 5d
43 likes1 comment
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Daisy Darker | Alice Feeney
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Interesting take on Agatha Christie‘s And Then There Were None. Parts of the story are in flashback to the eighties, which was fun. The twists were not difficult to figure out, but overall I had an enjoyable reading experience.

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The Wonder | Emma Donoghue
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I heard a positive review of the Netflix film, then discovered that it was based on a novel, so I had to read the book first! In 1862 an English nurse is sent to Ireland to watch a girl who supposedly has not eaten in four months. Her partner is a nurse who is a Catholic nun. This is a claustrophobic novel that delves into religious extremism, parenting, and oppression. The writing is excellent, but this is not for sensitive readers.

EKonrad Loved this book! So fascinating! 1w
Bookboss @EKonrad I liked the movie, but the book was much better! 1w
EKonrad I‘ll have to check out the movie for sure! 1w
31 likes3 comments
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Bookboss
Our Missing Hearts | Celeste Ng
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Our Missing Hearts had a dystopian setting, which I like, so I picked up the audiobook. Ng is a skillful writer, I appreciated that Bird, who is twelve, is written like a twelve-year old rather than a middle-aged man. The story is a warning of the evils of fascism and prejudice, which is important. At times Ng didn‘t trust the readers to pick up the themes, and became repetitive and heavy handed. The story of Bird and his parents is a good one!

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Liberation Day: Stories | George Saunders
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I signed up for the Zoom event with George Saunders through Parnassus Books in Nashville! I watched a fabulous interview with Saunders, and received the book in the mail a few days later. The collection contains nine short stories, and I enjoyed all of them. The stories discuss oppression in its various forms: fascism, classism, inequality, and even parenting. Saunders‘s writing is always purposeful and spare, yet conveys so much meaning.

Tonton Following him on Substack👍🌟 2w
Bookboss @Tonton Do you enjoy Substack? I have been tempted, but haven‘t signed up yet. 1w
Tonton @Bookboss still getting used to it; there‘s free and paid subscriptions levels. Need to explore more! 7d
43 likes1 stack add3 comments
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Black Cake | Charmaine Wilkerson
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I listened to the audiobook, and the narration is excellent. An estranged brother and sister meet after the death of their mother to settle her estate. They find that their mother has left a recording for them. She reveals the origins of their family and exposes many secrets. This is a lovely novel of family, love, heartbreak, and survival. I highly recommend!

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Shrines of Gaiety | Kate Atkinson
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Kate Atkinson has become an auto-buy author for me. I love her Jackson Brody series, and I have enjoyed several of her other books. Shrines of Gaiety focuses on Nellie who owns several nightclubs in London during the 20s. Atkinson develops a fascinating cast of characters who participate in the nightlife. The chapters are short, which helps to propel the story. As always, Atkinson‘s writing is superb. Loved it.

mcctrish KA is an auto buy for me too ❤️❤️❤️ 2w
CarolynM I love Kate Atkinson and I loved this❤️ 2w
47 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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Bookboss
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I love polar exploration stories, and I had not heard of this one. This book recounts the Belgian mission to find the magnetic South Pole. Sancton‘s descriptions had me reaching for my blankets and hot coffee. The ship is stuck in the ice for a year, and men have to survive the dark and cold. This is a fascinating tale of the men who take on years-long journeys at great risk to health and life. Absolutely absorbing.

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The Hacienda | Isabel Caas
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Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier is one of my favorite books, so I was intrigued by the comparisons to The Hacienda. While both novels begin with a young bride arriving at an ancestral mansion with a husband she hasn‘t known for long, the comparisons end there. The Hacienda is a horror novel, not a gothic suspense. The characters, setting, and descriptions are very well done and kept me turning the pages.

46 likes2 stack adds
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Shutter | Ramona Emerson
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I hope this will be the first in a series. Rita is a police photographer who grew up on the nearby Navajo reservation. She is burdened with the gift of seeing the spirits of the dead. Rita‘s character is engaging and complex, and the setting is well-drawn. I would love to see what comes next for Rita. The only weak spot is the plot. The mystery is easily solved, and not as interesting as Rita. I look forward to more from the author.

jlhammar Totally agree. Great review! 3w
Bookboss @jhammar Thank you! 3w
SamAnne I heard the Fresh Air interview with the author and got on my library website ASAP. Can‘t wait to start this one. Loved the Fresh Air interview. 3w
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SamAnne I highly recommend the Fresh Air interview with the author last week. I immediately went to my library‘s website and reserved it! Just arrived and can‘t wait to dive in. 3w
jlhammar @SamAnne I didn‘t know about that interview. Thank you! Definitely going to give that a listen. Hope you enjoy the book! 3w
Bookboss @SamAnne I have the episode downloaded, but I haven‘t listened to it yet! Thank you!! 3w
47 likes1 stack add6 comments
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Bookboss
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Kuang has constructed a world where magic lies within translation. Oxford recruits multilingual students to study at Babel, and eventually work for the university. The book follows a cohort of four students as they continue their study of languages and translation. The novel exposes the horrors of colonialism, racism, and misogyny, while displaying the enchantment of language. I loved the well-drawn setting, the characters, and the footnotes!

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Fairy Tale | Stephen King
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The cover shows a boy and a dog at the top of a spiral staircase that seems to go down forever. I felt like I went down that staircase myself — I was transported into another world. Charlie is a high school senior who starts helping out an elderly man. He finds a portal to a fairy tale world complete with giants, curses, and a princess. King is a master at building worlds that are both familiar and fantastic. I enjoyed every minute of this story.

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Lucy by the Sea: A Novel | Elizabeth Strout
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Elizabeth Strout has become one of my favorite authors. Lucy By the Sea is the fourth in the Lucy Barton series, and it is the best. Strout takes Lucy through the early days of the pandemic, detailing Lucy‘s anxieties, fears, and comforts. She is excellent at capturing all of the small moments and thoughts that make up a life. After finishing, I immediately re-read My Name is Lucy Barton. Just fabulous!

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Fellowship Point: A Novel | Alice Elliott Dark
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I haven‘t been able to stop thinking of this book, and I finished it weeks ago. The language, characters, and setting are beautifully constructed. All of the small moments that make up a marriage or a friendship add up to complex relationships. The book is long and slow-paced, but it is rich and layered. The story of two life long friends approaching the end of life may sound sad, but it is so worthwhile.

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Bookboss
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I love the Thursday Murder Club. Although the mysteries in this series are well done, I come back to spend time with these delightful people. The third in the series is an admirable edition, and Osman shows no signs of lazy plotting or writing. Looking forward to the next installment!

SarahBookInterrupted Can‘t wait to read it. I didn‘t realize a 3rd book is out. So exciting. I love the Thursday night murder club characters! (edited) 2mo
Bookboss @SarahBookInterrupted I just love hanging out with the Thursday Murder Club! 2mo
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Bookboss
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I went on a short vacation and visited four bookstores! I managed to restrain myself to only five book purchases. I just finished Lucy By The Sea, and decided that I needed a copy of My Name is Lucy Barton for my shelves, since I had read a library copy. Shutter is up for the National Book Award!

BkClubCare I have no idea who I gave my Lucy Barton book to but I just bought Olive Kitteridge and the Barton Boys so I can reread them 😉 2mo
30 likes1 comment
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Bookboss
Just Like Home | Sarah Gailey
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Vera returns home to care for her dying mother. When Vera was a child, her father was imprisoned for killing a number of men. Her mother preserved the home as an attraction to true-crime fans. This is a slow haunted house story. Gailey is masterful at describing cold middle-of-the-night terror and complex relationship terror. She also explores the complex relationships between Vera and her parents. Slow, spooky, and gruesome, but well done.

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Bookboss
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This is the fourth book of O‘Farrell‘s that I have read. I can now officially say that she is one of my favorite authors. Her descriptions of the time period and place are wonderfully evocative. The characters are well rounded and compelling. This novel deals with the expectations of women by society, and the goals of women as individuals. I was captivated by the story, and I didn‘t realize until the author‘s note that it was based on real people.

Chelsea.Poole Currently reading this and loving it! 2mo
Bookboss @Chelsea.Poole It‘s so good! 2mo
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The Measure | Nikki Erlick
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This has one of the best premises I have heard in a long time. One day everyone in the world awakens to a box with a string inside that determines the length of the person‘s life. The author glides over the how and why the strings appeared, and gets right to describing the fallout from this information. The book shifts between the various characters‘ perspectives and raises many questions. Excellent for book club discussions.

BookwormM Intrigued 2mo
49 likes3 stack adds1 comment
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Bookboss
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This is an enjoyable tale of a woman cursed to be a mermaid and what happens after she is caught by fisherman. The island setting is beautifully drawn, and the cast of characters are well rounded and vivid. The book explores the relationships between men and women, as well as relationships among women.

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Fairy Tale | Stephen King
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I returned home from vacation to find these waiting for me in the mail!

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Bookboss
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This is fascinating reporting on the sport of free diving and the animals that live at the great depths of the ocean. While we might believe that the Earth‘s surface has been fully explored, we really have little knowledge of life at the ocean depths. The author references the women divers of Japan and Korea, so I highly recommend pairing The Island of Sea Women by Lisa See with this book.

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Bookboss
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I went to three bookstores today, and bought a book at each. I am proud of my restraint!

Ruthiella Nice haul! 👍 4mo
32 likes1 comment
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Acts of Violet | Margarita Montimore
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This is a fabulous audiobook. I almost wonder if the author had the audio adaptation in mind while writing. Violet, a famous magician, disappeared on stage 10 years ago, and her fans have only grown more obsessed. Her sister is trying to live a normal life and avoids the publicity. The story is told through true crime podcast episodes, emails, and letters with some traditional narration. The characters are layered and the mystery captivating.

38 likes2 stack adds
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Our Wives Under the Sea | Julia Armfield
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This gorgeous novel tells the story of Miri and her wife Leah. Leah goes on a deep sea research mission and returns changed. The mystery of what happened to Leah is compelling, but what Leah‘s traumatic changes mean for her marriage is equally suspenseful. What does trauma do to a person and her relationships? How do those who love her continue to best love her? The book alternates between the two women‘s perspectives, giving insight into each.

Cathythoughts Nice review 👍🏻♥️ 4mo
BarbaraBB Fab review. I can‘t wait to read it for #CampLitsy! 4mo
43 likes2 comments
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Bookboss
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I did not enjoy the author‘s previous novel, The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry, so I hesitated picking up this one. I am glad I did. The novel explores friendship, creativity, mental health, and the power of stories. Sadie and Sam meet as children and go on to design video games together in college. They start their own company, and the novel follows them through their lives. They are fully drawn characters who will stay with me for a long time.

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Stopped at one of my favorite bookstores today!

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Happy-Go-Lucky | David Sedaris
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I listened to the audiobook read by the author, and my husband read the hardcover. If you have read the two volumes of David Sedaris‘s diaries, you will find many repeated stories in this collection. I didn‘t mind, because I enjoy his work. While I am sure many of his anecdotes are exaggerated for comic effect, his reflections are brutally honest. I highly recommend the audiobook so you can hear the work read by the author.

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Happy-Go-Lucky | David Sedaris
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My husband and I went on a short trip, and we visited four bookstores along the way!

Ruthiella Nice haul! 👍 5mo
Chrissyreadit So much fun! 5mo
38 likes2 comments
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Bookboss
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I have been a Benedict Cumberbatch fan since the first Sherlock series, but this is not a book about the actor. It is a book about embracing the things in life that bring you joy. As long as your passion doesn‘t bring harm to others, revel in it without shame or embarrassment. I learned this lesson in my mid-thirties, and stopped trying to dismiss my love for Star Trek, Star Wars, comic books, and literature. Joy is rare; appreciate it.

Karisa Hear! Hear! 👏👏👏 6mo
43 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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Bookboss
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Reading this novel reminded me of watching black and white films from the 1930s with their snappy dialogue and glamorous set pieces. I enjoyed the language and the plot, but I found the character of Katey to be rather flat. I never felt that I really knew her, but perhaps that was intentional. Overall, this was an enjoyable read.

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Machinehood | S.B. Divya
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This was the Sword and Laser pick for May. The idea of AI becoming sentient is intriguing. At what point does an AI deserve the same rights as a human being? This novel explores many ideas, but I felt this idea was not explored as well as I had hoped. Machinehood is definitely a novel of ideas and world building rather than a novel of characters and relationships. I enjoyed the world, but wished for more storytelling and less information.

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Bookboss
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I almost ditched this mystery twice, but I am glad I kept going. The ending had me wanting to read the next in the series. Finlay is a single mom and struggling author who is mistaken for a hired killer. Twice the plot became so implausible that I came close to not finishing. I enjoyed the characters and the madcap tone, so I kept going. This is great fun as long as you can suspend your disbelief.

KathyWheeler I had an issue with the implausibility of it too but decided to just go with it. Both books were a lot of fun. (edited) 6mo
46 likes1 comment
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The Children on the Hill | Jennifer McMahon
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I have been wanting to try a Jennifer McMahon novel for a long time. The premise of this one involves a podcaster who hunts monsters, so I it sounded perfect for me. The story alternates between Lizzy, a monster-hunter in her fifties in 2019, and Vi, a child in 1978 who is being raised by an increasingly creepy grandmother. The two timelines merge at the end. Although I enjoyed this novel, the ending was not satisfying.

Bookzombie Great review! My first McMahon was The Winter People and I remember really liking it. I have read one other. I always mean to pick up more and just never get back to her. 7mo
46 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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Bookboss
Verity | Colleen Hoover
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Colleen Hoover has become quite popular lately, and I wanted to see why. She seems to mostly write romance, which doesn‘t interest me, but I saw this one described as a mystery/thriller. It is propulsive and engaging, but the characters are thinly drawn. I enjoyed the reading experience, but I found it unsatisfying. I understand her appeal, but I am not in a hurry to read more from her.

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A Master of Djinn | P. Djeli Clark
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This was the April pick for the Sword and Laser book club. The world building was excellent. The author constructed a steampunk magical Cairo in 1912, where Djinn live alongside humans and magic is everywhere. The author wrote several short stories in this setting before writing this novel. I read one of the stories, but it‘s not necessary to do so. Although I found the plot predictable, I enjoyed being in the world.

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Sea of Tranquility: A Novel | Emily St. John Mandel
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I attended my first in-person author event since Covid! Emily St.John Mandel was a delight! This book is a gripping novel about time and reality. It had me thinking about the various lives I have lived throughout the years, and how unknowable the future is. This book will stay with me for a long time.

charl08 Love the glass! Does it have a story? 7mo
Bookboss @charl08 Thank you! No story behind it. I bought it in a little arts and crafts shop. 7mo
BarbaraBB Beautiful picture indeed! And I loved the book too. 7mo
62 likes2 stack adds3 comments
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Bookboss
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The book cover captures the true be of this novel: sharply humorous and light. It does not reflect the subjects addressed: sexual assault, misogyny, child neglect and abandonment, and devastating grief. The overarching theme is having hope and confidence in yourself and those you love. I enjoyed it, even though I have a low tolerance for children portrayed as extreme geniuses. The dog is delightful.

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The Appeal | JANICE. HALLETT
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I raced through this puzzle constructed from emails and text messages. I love epistolary novels, and this one is great! The frame story is two law students are reviewing the evidence for an appeal. Someone has been convicted of the murder of a member of a community theater group, and the two law students are tasked with looking for the real story amidst the emails. The emails and texts are interrupted by the students‘ musings via text. So fun!

Aims42 I have this one on my pile next to read, I can‘t wait! I also love epistolary novels 🥰 8mo
38 likes1 stack add1 comment
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Fabulous Saturday at the library!

EvieBee Definitely! Lots of new releases. 8mo
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FantasticLand: A Novel | Mike Bockoven
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Disney World is one of my favorite vacation spots, so this “Lord of the Flies” horror novel set in a theme park sounded interesting. I liked the interview structure, which was reminiscent of World War Z. It doesn‘t hold back on the descriptions of gore, so be warned. The audiobook had a male and a female narrator. The male narrator was good, but inexplicably the female narrator kept clearing her throat. I wonder if that sound was in the text.

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Bookboss
Parnassus Books | Nashville, TN (Bookstore)
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I took a solo road trip to Nashville and stopped by Parnassus Books! The store is co-owned by Ann Patchett, and it is lovely!

Chelsea.Poole I‘d love to go! Also, both books are 😍😍 8mo
43 likes1 comment
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The Swimmers | Julie Otsuka
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This is a lovely novel in two parts. The first part is told from the first person plural viewpoint, and it describes the people who swim at a community pool. The second part focuses on one of those people who is suffering from dementia. My mother had Alzheimer‘s and my father had dementia after a series of strokes. Books about these diseases do not always resonate with me, but this one is lovely.

BookBabe Sounds good but also hard. My father had strokes too. He‘s since passed. I‘m tentatively stacking it if I feel like I can handle it 8mo
BookBabe Great review btw 👌🏻 8mo
Bookboss @BookBabe My parents passed a long time ago, so I feel that can read this now. Having insight on what you can and can‘t handle at a particular time is a good thing. 8mo
42 likes3 stack adds3 comments
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I love book mail!!

TracyReadsBooks This is such a great book. I loved it! 8mo
40 likes3 stack adds1 comment
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Bookboss
The Book of Accidents | Chuck Wendig
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Date night with my husband included a stop at the bookstore!

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Bookboss
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Kean looks into cases of misdeeds, crimes, and unethical behavior committed in the name of scientific advancement. Some stories were familiar while others were unknown to me. Overall, the book was interesting, but the audiobook frequently interrupted the narrative with references to the author‘s podcast and website. Perhaps these interruptions are unobtrusive footnotes in the print version, but they were clunky in the audiobook.

Reagan I just love Sam Kean! 9mo
EvieBee Sounds so good! 9mo
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Empire of Pain is an absorbing account of the Sackler family and their role in the production and marketing of pain medication. I am heartbroken over the opioid crisis, and I wanted to learn more about the lawsuits that were filed. Still, I wasn‘t sure I would be interested in an entire book on the Sackler family. The author does a brilliant job of keeping the story moving along, and I was gripped. The narrator of the audiobook is excellent.

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Ansel Packer is on death row. The novel is told from his perspective of his final hours and from the past perspectives of the important women in his life. This is not a fast-paced thriller about a serial killer. This is a story that explores the cycle of abuse and violence, personal responsibility and institutional responsibility. The characters are well developed, believable, and heartbreaking.

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A Town Like Alice | Nevil Shute
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The story begins in London after WWII, then moves to British Malay during the war, then onto Australia after the war. Written in 1950, the book has 1950s sensibilities toward race and women. I loved the story of a woman‘s survival as a prisoner of the Japanese, and the building of towns in the Australian Outback. I am now curious about Australia‘s history of racial segregation, which was treated matter-of-factly in the novel. Loved the narrator.

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