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ImperfectCJ

ImperfectCJ

Joined May 2019

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ImperfectCJ
Little Darlings | Melanie Golding
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One of my many views while listening to the tagged book. Unfortunately, my own kids' homeschool and substitute teaching a writing class this afternoon is going to mess up my preferred rainy-day plan (blankets, kitty snuggles, audiobook, warm beverage, maybe some crocheting). The teaching is good stuff, don't get me wrong, but it's not a cat and a blanket.

Pageturner1 i have that cat! 😆 17h
54 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
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Picked up my CSA share then ran to the library to pick up my hold and unintentionally made an amusing arrangement in the trunk. Food for the Dead on top of food for the living.

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ImperfectCJ
My Lovely Wife | Samantha Downing
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Mehso-so

This is an amusing, twisted little story. Highly unlikely but still fun. Lately whenever a contemporary (2018 or after) book has an "x years later" epilogue, I imagine what that epilogue would look like if the author had known covid was on the horizon. The reality of the pandemic kind of constrains my imaginings of any story past the back cover. Among other things.

SilversReviews I enjoyed this book. 3d
48 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
When Breath Becomes Air | Paul Kalanithi
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Silo helped me with my audiopuzzling this morning. He had strong opinions about which areas of the puzzle I should concentrate on. (Or maybe he was trying to convince me to do something more productive, like sit on the couch so he could warm himself on my lap.)

RaeLovesToRead Well done finishing with a feline "helper"! ? Whenever Pickles tries to join in, pieces start mysteriously disappearing ? 5d
Allkat Cats are good helpers. 5d
ImperfectCJ @RaeLovesToRead Silo mostly glares at me (when he's not grooming himself), but his sister Camille is a much more active assistant. I was very surprised I didn't have to search under all the furniture for lost pieces! 5d
RaeLovesToRead Too cute! 😄 5d
52 likes4 comments
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ImperfectCJ
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Pickpick

Wow, what a fun Christie mystery! It was also very cool to hear it read by Kenneth Branagh. I just saw his (somewhat over-the-top) Hamlet for the first time and was reminded of how good an actor he is (if a little cheesy at times). His voice acting in this audiobook is excellent. One of my great joys in life is hearing British people do American accents, but even Branagh's American accents were good (and only a little unintentionally amusing).

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ImperfectCJ
Ghost Boys | Jewell Parker Rhodes
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Pickpick

I'm not sure how I feel about the "ghost boys" device, but I love how Rhodes invites readers to see the many perspectives of a very messy and nuanced situation. You have an event that is clearly wrong, the killing of a child, and around that are the people and context that explain and complicate things. The novel recognizes the inclination to despair and the need to grieve while highlighting the necessity to take responsibility for making change.

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ImperfectCJ
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Mehso-so

Well, I'm done with the series. This installment feels very much like a wrap-up. Without a strong narrative arc, it reads to me less like a story than like a list of things the characters did. I enjoyed it, but I'm not sad the series is done.

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ImperfectCJ
When Breath Becomes Air | Paul Kalanithi
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Pickpick

This memoir is poignant in itself but even more so with the handful of intersections between Paul's life and my own. His daughter was born in the same hospital where I birthed mine, and we both worked at Stanford Sierra Camp, although I worked a fall conference season while he, as a Stanford student, worked the summer camp. He writes about his mortality with emotion but without melodrama or trite sentiments. It's a beautiful and devastating story.

TheAromaofBooks Great review!! 5d
56 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ImperfectCJ
Untitled | Unknown
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December #bookspinbingo card! #bookspin and #doublespin are both nonfiction. What are the odds? (1 in 190, actually)

I will fill in the "gift" titles once I get my gift books. Maybe I shouldn't take the gift books as a given, but my spouse has been getting me five books for birthday/Christmas for about the past twenty years, so there is ample precedent. If he decides to take this year off, I'll just find five more titles!

@TheAromaofBooks

TheAromaofBooks Yay!!! Looks great!! 6d
Clare-Dragonfly I think if he doesn‘t buy you books this year, you are obligated to gift yourself five more books 😁 6d
ImperfectCJ @Clare-Dragonfly I like the way you think! He doesn't buy them, though... they're library books. It's a tradition he began when we had little extra money for books and he's just kept it up. I guess the gift is less the books themselves than the promise of time to read and him picking titles from my TBR that he thinks I'll like. :-) 6d
Clare-Dragonfly Okay, that‘s just super sweet! 🥰 5d
40 likes4 comments
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ImperfectCJ
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December #bookspin #bookspinbingo list! I almost sat out this month, but #bookspinbingo seems to have become an integral part of my reading life...I can't imagine a month without a bingo card!

The 5 "gift books" are space holders for the library books my spouse always gets for me for birthday/Christmas. The rest are mostly books I'm reading with my kids or spooky/creepy reads for #holidayhorrors

@TheAromaofBooks @Patchshank

Crazeedi I have to get my list together!! 1w
TheAromaofBooks Yay!!! 1w
46 likes2 comments
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ImperfectCJ
Untitled | Unknown
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November's #bookspinbingo results:

12 books read
1 bingo
#bookspin finished (but not #doublespin)

Not as amazing as last month, but not too shabby (and in better balance with my non-reading life).

@TheAromaofBooks

Crazeedi Great job! 1w
TheAromaofBooks Yay!!! Fantastic month!! 1w
Gissy Spectacula! 📚📚📚📚❤️👏👏👏👏 1w
39 likes3 comments
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ImperfectCJ
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Not an exciting photo for a noteworthy event: I sent out my #CreepyChristmas #CC swap today! If I didn't mess anything up, it should arrive with plenty of time to spare before opening day.

Thanks again for hosting, @teebe ! This was so fun to put together, and I am so excited for my match to open everything!

teebe Awesome! Thanks for participating! 🖤 1w
ImperfectCJ @teebe Well, I got a call from UPS today that I did, in fact, mess something up. But it looks like an easy fix and hopefully the box will be back on its way later today! 🤞 1w
BookishTrish It arrived safe and sound! I can‘t wait to open it! 6d
ImperfectCJ @BookishTrish Hooray! It had a bit of an adventure getting to you, but I am so glad it got there! 6d
37 likes4 comments
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ImperfectCJ
Now I Rise | Kiersten White
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Pickpick

Audiopuzzling. I was on the fence about this series after the first book, but I'm getting more into it now. Still more political intrigue than I can easily follow, but I like the character development.

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ImperfectCJ
Coyote Songs | Gabino Iglesias
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Mehso-so

Finished the tagged novel while the pie cooled. I won't say much since this is my #lmpbc book this month, but I didn't really get into this one. Some of the storylines are more interesting than others, and they don't come together as well as they might. The pie was good, though.

Gissy Maybe the book was not as good as expected but that pie looks delicious😋 2w
57 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
Now I Rise | Kiersten White
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Audio-IKEAing!

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ImperfectCJ
Now I Rise | Kiersten White
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Almost mistook this mantis for a leaf while audiowalking today. Luckily I figured it out before I put my foot down. (I like crunching leaves; I do not like crunching critters. I doubt they like it much, either.)

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ImperfectCJ
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Pickpick

Super fun book by and about the Ravenmaster at the Tower of London. I learned about this one from Effin Birds on IG and got the audiobook when I found out it was read by the author. I periodically think it would be cool to keep a hawk or a raven and was rearranging furniture and thinking just this when I heard Chris Skaife say how if you keep a corvid, there will be chaos every time you move anything in your house. So, maybe a hawk instead.

ImperfectCJ Photo of the spooky fog we had as I left work last night. Even though I know my way home quite well, I had to put on the navigation on the highway because it was too foggy to see when the exits were coming up. Not directly raven-related. 3w
swynn Good to hear a good review about this one-- it's at the top of my “overdue so make up your mind“ stack so I'll get to it really soon. 3w
ImperfectCJ @swynn I hope you enjoy it! This is one that wasn't on my radar at all, but I'm glad I found it. Sometimes I found the organization of the book a little clunky, but it's possible that's an audiobook thing and it would make sense if I saw it. 3w
51 likes3 comments
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ImperfectCJ
And I Darken | Kiersten White
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Pickpick

This novel has a little more political intrigue than I generally have the patience for, but the interactions and developing relationships between the characters are interesting, as is the time period and geographical setting. Overall a fun audiobook to finish while making a somewhat sylvan-looking mask I'm gifting to someone not on Litsy (so not spoiling any surprises by posting...unless someone here was hoping to be surprised with a mask).

ozma.of.oz That‘s a lovely looking fabric! 💚 3w
ImperfectCJ @ozma.of.oz Thank you! I was trying to find something that would subtly suggest winter holidays during the winter but wouldn't be too obvious to wear year-round. Plus, where I live winter is the green season, so this seems more appropriate than snowy scenes anyway. 3w
ozma.of.oz It‘s got a very evergreen feeling to it. Very nice! 👍🏻 3w
ImperfectCJ Oh, and this is my #bookspin for November, @TheAromaofBooks 📚 3w
TheAromaofBooks Great progress!!! 3w
52 likes5 comments
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ImperfectCJ
Coyote Songs | Gabino Iglesias
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Worked on the tagged #lmpbc book and enjoyed this view of construction while my kiddo experienced a teenage rite of passage: wisdom tooth extraction. She's home and doing well so far, but with keeping up with timers for gauze, ice packs, and meds and translating her gauze-speech requests, I'm getting less reading done.

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ImperfectCJ
The Night Sister: A Novel | Jennifer McMahon
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Pickpick

Between a so-so and a pick. I like the idea behind this one, but it feels a little like McMahon explains the mysteriousness out of the story. Also, Piper and Margot are flat enough characters, I kept forgetting which sister was which. Not entirely sure what the point is of Jason's character at all. Still, it's a satisfyingly eerie story.

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ImperfectCJ
The Marrow Thieves | Cherie Dimaline
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Pickpick

Although stronger in some parts than others, overall this is an excellent post-apocalyptic novel. Dimaline's one-step-from-reality plot reminds me a little of Margaret Atwood's MaddAddam trilogy, how Atwood intentionally made everything that happens in that trilogy something that had already happened in real life somewhere. The Marrow Thieves is particularly chilling because I can't quite dismiss it as outrageous.

CuriousG I feel exactly the same way about this one! Are you planning on reading the sequel to it? I believe it was just released a few weeks ago. 1mo
ImperfectCJ @CuriousG I only just now discovered the sequel while posting my review. I might have to check it out. There are definitely some unresolved questions I have after finishing this first book. How about you? Are you planning to read the sequel? 1mo
CuriousG I am definitely planning on reading the sequel, just haven't got my hands on it yet. 🙂 1mo
See All 7 Comments
ImperfectCJ @CuriousG I just put it on hold on Libby. I should get to read it in 2-6 weeks. :-) 4w
BookwormM You had me at Atwood 4w
ImperfectCJ @BookwormM I've been thinking about this since I saw your comment. Just to make sure I'm not engaging in false advertising, it's just that one particular approach to dystopia that reminds me of Atwood. The tone is different from Atwood, a little like Michelle Paver's Chronicles of Ancient Darkness, a little like Paul Tremblay's Cabin at the End of the World, but not completely like either of those. 4w
BookwormM Don‘t worry I won‘t hold you to it and even Atwood books can be totally different to each other 4w
57 likes1 stack add7 comments
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ImperfectCJ
90 Miles to Havana | Enrique Flores-Galbis
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Pickpick

The plot elements come together a little too tidily to be entirely realistic, but I appreciate that the author presents the Cuban revolution in a nuanced way, showing how it was good for some people and not at all good for others. The author also does an excellent job showing the helplessness and longing of the preteen years and how well-meaning adults sometimes miss the mark. From the Build Your Library homeschool curriculum level 6 book list.

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ImperfectCJ
Why Didn't They Ask Evans? | Agatha Christie
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Mehso-so

This one reads a bit like a farce, with some fairly ridiculous characters and a pretty unlikely plot. The tone actually reminded me a little of Cold Comfort Farm. Enjoyable, I suppose, but not one I expect to return to.

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ImperfectCJ
Madness of Crowds | Louise Penny
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Pickpick

An overall pick for the moral/ethical questions raised and despite Penny making the mistake many of us have in thinking that the arrival of the vaccine(s) would lead swiftly to the end of the pandemic. I also think she puts too much emphasis on the lasting effects of pandemic isolation, or maybe it was just worse in Quebec. Or maybe it hit people harder who were used to interacting a lot more with a lot of people, and I'm missing that perspective.

ImperfectCJ Basically, she seems to assume a collective experience that I didn't really feel, which made it challenging to connect with the novel at some points. Not usually a problem for me with stories about less current events. 1mo
ImperfectCJ And...what's with all the hints about Gamache and Beauvoir not being able to smell things? I thought for sure this meant they'd caught breakthrough cases, but I guess not in Penny's perfect post-pandemic world. Can't figure out why she even mentions it, though. 1mo
55 likes2 comments
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ImperfectCJ
There There: A novel | Tommy Orange
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Pickpick

This novel surprised me. For most of it, I wasn't sure if I liked it. I started wishing I'd read the paper version instead of audio because I had trouble keeping the characters and relationships straight, but the last 1/4 or so, it all comes together into something that feels horribly inevitable (in part because Orange has been prepping us for it the entire time). This is another piece of California I hadn't really looked at before.

68 likes2 stack adds
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ImperfectCJ
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Mehso-so

Not my favorite of the series. I felt a little emotionally manipulated by this one, and that never puts me in a good mood.

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ImperfectCJ
Untitled | Unknown
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November's #bookspinbingo card. Let the game begin!

@TheAromaofBooks

TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!! Looks great!! 1mo
41 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
Untitled | Unknown
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But ACK! I forgot my #bookspinbingo blackout (and I'm sure I forgot a couple of readathons, and I know a few of my books mentioned Halloween and I forgot to factor that in, but this is the best I'm going to do tonight).

So, add that to the totals above for:

My Week 4 Total: 1670
Bingo Blackout: 100
My Grand Total: 5425

#TeamSlaughter
#scarathlon2021

Thank you for being such an awesome team captain, @clwojick !

Texreader Oooh!! Nicely done!! 1mo
Clwojick Fantastic job! You killed it this month!🔪 Thank you for joining us! 🖤 1mo
30 likes2 comments
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ImperfectCJ
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Pickpick

A pick for the main mystery, a so-so for the internal Sûreté intrigue, which is hampered by a few too many twists.

Two more to go in the series!

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ImperfectCJ
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It's a little cobbled together, but I think it's a passable November #bookspin list.
@TheAromaofBooks

TheAromaofBooks Woohoo!!! 1mo
45 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
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I left the colored pencils at home so can't mark this one in right away, but with The Length of a String, I have achieved my very first #bookspinbingo blackout! Now to tally my points for #scarathlon and make a November #bookspin list to post by Nov 2. @TheAromaofBooks

wanderinglynn Congrats! 🎉👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 1mo
TheAromaofBooks YAY!!! Fabulous month!!! 1mo
Roary47 Wow! Awesome job. 💛🎉 1mo
34 likes3 comments
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ImperfectCJ
The Length of a String | Elissa Brent Weissman
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Mehso-so

This is a cute story about what makes us who we are, and I'm glad I read it, but it doesn't hold together as tightly as it might. There were some opportunities for tension that I think the author missed out on, and I'm not keen on seventh graders dating each other. I did, however, enjoy learning about Luxembourg and Luxembourgish. I read this with my son as part of Build Your Library homeschool curriculum, level 6.

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ImperfectCJ
Death in Her Hands | Ottessa Moshfegh
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I got some sweet stuff in my #HHS #HauntedHollowSwap from @shortsarahrose ! An adorable card, a bookmark, a tasty-smelling candle, and two books I've been wanting to read and that are just in time to toss into my overnight bag for a teensy road trip! Thank you so much, Sarah, and thank you for hosting, @wanderinglynn !

wanderinglynn Fantastic! 🎃🧡 1mo
shortsarahrose Glad you like everything! Enjoy your books and trip 📚 🎃 1mo
Crazeedi Happy Halloween my friend! Enjoy your trip!🎃🧡 1mo
52 likes3 comments
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ImperfectCJ
Pieces of Her | Karin Slaughter
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Mehso-so

Enjoyable but highly unlikely story. Kind of makes me want to have an escape plan and/or take a road trip.

#TeamSlaughter team read, plus 9 hours for two readathons = 230 points
#scarathlon2021 #screamathon #littenlisten

ImperfectCJ Also, the similes are a little out of control in this one. Sweat like melted butter, knees popping like ukelele strings. 1mo
42 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
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Pickpick

I'm still enjoying these novels even though they're getting increasingly difficult to believe and are becoming a little predictable. Great for listening to on long walks, though, and I like some of the new developments for some of the regular characters.

Crazeedi They did begin to lose their luster IMO 1mo
52 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
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This post contains spoilers
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#scarathlon2021 supernatural beings word search. 32 words at 10 points each: 320 points for #TeamSlaughter @Clwojick

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ImperfectCJ
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This post contains spoilers
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#scarathlon2021 crime fiction word search, 27 words at 10 points each: 270 points for #TeamSlaughter @Clwojick

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ImperfectCJ
A Stir of Echoes | Richard Matheson
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Mehso-so

Nice and spooky, quick listen, but a little dated. Reading it makes me want to watch the movie again.

40 likes1 stack add
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ImperfectCJ
Baby Teeth | Zoje Stage
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Mehso-so

I like how Stage explores the ambivalence of motherhood and the identity shifts that accompany becoming parents, but the story is a little too step-by-step and the characters a little too flat for me. I don't find fictional therapy sessions interesting (not just because fictional mental health treatment is so unrealistically effective and easy to access), and WHY haven't these people childproofed their house? At least stop sharpening the pencils.

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ImperfectCJ
I Always Find You | John Ajvide Lindqvist
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Mehso-so

This one started out bizarre and good but by the end was just bizarre. It has elements of Lindqvist's other novels in it and purports to be a description of the experiences that led him to become a horror writer (appeasing the monster), but I am deeply skeptical. It is an interesting look at the concept of the monster within, which Lindqvist explores at length in his novels, as well as the idea of unintended consequences.

ImperfectCJ This is my October #bookspin (I wrote down the title wrong in my list, but this is the right one). @TheAromaofBooks 1mo
TheAromaofBooks Great progress!!! 1mo
47 likes2 comments
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ImperfectCJ
Glass Houses | Louise Penny
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Pickpick

Despite the title, glass houses don't play much of a role in this novel. As I read these books, I'm made aware of my unconscious United Statesian view of Canada as a kinder, blander version of the US, which is not like Penny's Quebec at all. I've visited Ontario and PEI, but our 2020 Montreal trip was scuttled due to the pandemic. These novels remind me that I need to reschedule the trip...and now make time for the Eastern Townships, too.

52 likes1 stack add
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ImperfectCJ
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Pickpick

This one is a little different from the previous novels. It's a little silly, quite unlikely, but I enjoyed it. Although I think I could probably give this exact same review for most of the Gamache books.

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ImperfectCJ
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We had visitors this week, which, combined with helping my kids prepare for music competitions, gave me much less time to read than I had in Weeks 1 and 2, but I ended up with 260 points for Week 3.

Total for Weeks 1-3: 3,765

#scarathlon #TeamSlaughter @clwojick

Clwojick Woohoo! Way to go! 🔥 ❤ 1mo
31 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
On Lighthouses | Jazmina Barrera
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My #gettbr selections arrived while I was at work today, way earlier than I'm used to getting them. Excited to get started on these! Any suggestions for where to begin?

Ruthiella I‘m definitely interested to hear what you think about 1mo
53 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
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My sister-in-law sent me a bookish Halloweeny t-shirt, which coordinates really well with my Halloween mask!

JamieArc I have a similar shirt that I wore today (I posted it earlier today)! 1mo
ImperfectCJ @JamieArc So we were sort of shirt twins today! Maybe fraternal shirt twins? 1mo
JamieArc @ImperfectCJ Haha yes! Fraternal twins! 1mo
See All 7 Comments
Texreader Love this! 1mo
AmyG Ha. Perfect! 🙌🏻 1mo
RaeLovesToRead So cute!!! 😊 1mo
Chrissyreadit Love them! 1mo
73 likes7 comments
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ImperfectCJ
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Caught sight of this orb weaver and her sister (just behind her but not in the picture) while audiowalking today. Today was a challenging one (neighbors acting a fool in their one-sided feud with us, among other little inconveniences), but this find and the accompanying book were a welcome diversion. And the weather was gorgeous. Trying to focus on the good stuff.

Soubhiville Pretty! We have some sort of large spider dwelling on the outer roof beam of our patio. It only hangs out on the web at night, so I can‘t get a photo to identify it. But I say hello to it each night when I take the dog out. 😊🕸 2mo
ElizaMarie This is absolutely beautiful!

Also, your neighbors sound super tiring! Ugh! Hang in here!
2mo
ImperfectCJ @ElizaMarie Tiring is exactly what it is. Thank you for the words of support! 2mo
ImperfectCJ @Soubhiville I love the big spiders (as long as they don't touch me). We got to watch one build a web in our backyard last October. It was hypnotic. 2mo
Soubhiville As long as they stay outside I‘m good with them 😊. 2mo
59 likes5 comments
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ImperfectCJ
Through My Eyes | Ruby Bridges
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Pickpick

Super quick memoir from the woman who, at age 6, desegregated her neighborhood elementary school in New Orleans. I love how Bridges shows us this story through her eyes as a child and how she's grown to contextualize her experience over time. Invaluable addition to my ongoing education about race and racism in the United States.

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ImperfectCJ
Never Let Me Go | Kazuo Ishiguro
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Pickpick

Very Ishiguro and so, so good. I love how the story unfolds and just kind of gets under the skin. This is a poignant look at the way that we decide on a social order and then do whatever it takes to justify that order, including dehumanizing people as necessary.

51 likes1 stack add
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ImperfectCJ
Untitled | Unknown
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Week 2 Total: 1090
Cumulative Total: 3395
This is not including bingos, which I'll add at the end.
#TeamSlaughter #scarathlon

Clwojick Awesome Job!! 2mo
33 likes1 comment
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ImperfectCJ
I Always Find You | John Ajvide Lindqvist
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My children are recording for a music competition. I brought my book, but my "proud mama" emotions are making it hard to focus on reading. This is the first time since the pandemic began that my daughter has played with a live accompanist and the first time my son ever has, and I am just amazed at the progress they've made in their playing, even with all the stress and uncertainty of the past year and a half.

ravenlee That‘s awesome! Way to go, kiddos! What do they play? 2mo
ImperfectCJ @ravenlee Daughter plays flute, son plays euphonium. They both play piano, too, but this competition is on their wind instruments. 2mo
Crazeedi That's so wonderful , proud mama!🥰 2mo
57 likes3 comments