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shanaqui

shanaqui

Joined December 2016

Eternal dabbler: BA Hons (Eng Lit), MA (Med Lit), BSc Hons (Nat Sci/Bio). Crochets, cross stitches, blogs at breathesbooks.com. Occasionally sleeps.
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shanaqui
The Stranger Times | C.K.McDonnell
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I ended up getting myself a storage cart thing to store some of the books that won't fit on my fixed shelves. It's so perfect for my British Library Crime Classics collection that I'll probably reorganise other stuff and gradually move them all into it!

Started reading the tagged book yesterday, though, on a whim. Not sure where it is going exactly, even now I've read 30%, but I'm curious enough to keep going.

MrsK Love all those BLCC titles!!🥰 21h
rabbitprincess The Edinburgh Mystery?! That is going on my to-read list right now 😄 21h
shanaqui @rabbitprincess I picked it up during my weekend away in Edinburgh. 😁 20h
shanaqui @MrsK They always look so nice collected together. 😁 20h
15 likes1 stack add4 comments
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shanaqui
Our Wives Under the Sea | Julia Armfield
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Mehso-so

This one didn't work for me, but I suspect a good amount of that is very personal. Body horror and hypochondria and... just a lot of focus on the body and the body going wrong. Gaah.

This was my #DoubleSpin, woo. I've also made a non-pretty #BookSpinBingo card so I at least have something to post.

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shanaqui
Our Wives Under the Sea | Julia Armfield
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Now I'm back from my holiday jaunt, here's this month's #BookSpin list. I feel a little like I'm cheating, as I got 80% of the way through Our Wives Under The Sea last month, and now it's the #DoubleSpin.

Last month I got my #BookSpin, #DoubleSpin, and one line on my #BookSpinBingo, but felt too exhausted and meh to go as far as creating a nice pretty card to post. Maybe this month...

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shanaqui
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I just had a little break from the internet with a trip up to Scotland! And the tagged book is one of the (many) books I picked up there from an indie bookshop, Topping & Company. I'd been saving up for a reading spree, so when I fell in love with that shop, I really went for it...

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shanaqui
Pickpick

This was fun, though I felt the dialogue was sometimes a little *too* anachronistic -- I don't ask for perfect accuracy, meeeeh about that, but it just didn't ring true sometimes. Still, I'll read the second book.

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shanaqui
The Wild Hunt | Emma Seckel

I've been so ridiculously burned out that I haven't been reading much, but this book was staring me in the face from where I was sitting to work, so hey, why not? I'm giving it a shot. So far, so good.

I've been making good progress with #BookSpin; I have a line in #BookSpinBingo, and I've finished my #BookSpin and #DoubleSpin. It's just this last week the Too Muchness of work has caught up to me.

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shanaqui
Pickpick

Another one that'll go towards a line in #BookSpinBingo.

I found it very readable and a very quick read, and it made me cry, but it felt... like The House in the Cerulean Sea, I found that it felt like there was a very strong Moral Of The Story, and that the reader was being very obviously manipulated into certain feelings. It was very compelling and quick to read, and I sped through it, but at the same time... I don't know.

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shanaqui
Pickpick

Reread complete! I haven't made my card properly yet, but this will count toward #BookSpinBingo.

I do love these guys, how Harry brings out the best in Julius and brings him alive, and how Julius offers him acceptance and love. I'm not sure the way Harry's caught between two worlds was ever quite resolved, though.

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shanaqui

I really loved this trilogy, so I'm excited this is the next book in my sort-of chronological-by-publication-order reread of all K.J. Charles' books!

(Sort of because there are books that came out in the same year, and I'm not being too particular about which order I read those in. Which lets me skip Jackdaw for a bit and get a palate cleanser in the form of the Society of Gentlemen.)

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shanaqui
Death of Jezebel | Christianna Brand

The intro makes this sound pretty amazing, so let's see! I haven't read anything by Brand before. So far I'm a bit intrigued, but wondering if I'd be more excited if I'd read her other books and met these two detectives before...

MrsK Jezebel is one of my favorites by Brand. Have you read 3w
8 likes1 stack add1 comment
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shanaqui
The Moonday Letters | Emmi Itranta

I've started this up as a) I had an ARC that I never got to (oops) and b) it's my #DoubleSpin book this month. I'm finding the style a little... flowery? Like it doesn't quite *feel* like letters. Hmph.

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shanaqui
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Pickpick

Read this so I can review it for Postcrossing's blog, and enjoyed it greatly. I used a set of sticky page markers (which someone sent me in a Litsy swap ages ago, actually!) to mark a bunch of pages I'm interested in flicking back to when I write the review. 😁

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shanaqui
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And here's my #BookSpin list for September! Going to start with a reread of The Ruin of Gabriel Ashleigh, before rereading A Fashionable Indulgence. I didn't put it on the list/won't include it as a free square for #BookSpinBingo, though, because it's so short it feels like cheating.

You'll notice the curse has been broken: I read Persephone Station this month! So now I've read something for every number on the list at least once.

17 likes1 stack add
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shanaqui
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Pickpick

Well crumbs, I didn't see that coming! I feel like I must've missed a clue, there.

I'm starting to let my guard down and trust that Colin isn't going to be an arse again, but hmph. Nope. Still a bit mad at him.

Also, belated post, but lookit, I made a line! #BookSpinBingo

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shanaqui
Den of Wolves | Juliet Marillier
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Pickpick

Part of me still wishes that Grim and Blackthorn had remained a platonic relationship. There was something very powerful about that, and it's always nice to see powerful non-romantic relationships between adults in fiction.

Buuut... it does also make sense of part of their healing journey. In the end, I was glad to follow their journey and see them find each other.

This was my #DoubleSpin, just in time.

shanaqui I'm hoping I can also get a #BookSpinBingo line, iiiif I can finish Skyward Inn and Death in the Floating City. I'm not that far off with either, but it does depend on me actually READING, which hasn't been a guarantee in the last week-ish. Sigh. 1mo
2 likes1 comment
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shanaqui

In roughly 25 hours, I need to read the whole of this, 100 pages of Juliet Marillier's Den of Wolves, and 100 pages of Skyward Inn, in order to finish my #DoubleSpin book and get a #BookSpinBingo line... Put like that, it's very doable; just read 100 pages of this in my nighttime bath. 😁

shanaqui Realised I have two days, actually, because August has 31 days. Not sure why I thought otherwise for a bit there... 1mo
8 likes1 comment
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shanaqui
Skyward Inn | Aliya Whiteley

This... seems to be getting really weird. I don't think I like it.

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shanaqui
Skyward Inn | Aliya Whiteley

I really don't know what I make of this so far... I inhaled the first 100 pages and then things went a bit weird.

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shanaqui

I'm finding the constant footnotes so jarring. Like, this isn't a quick footnote for a source, this is long explanations packed into footnotes. Gaaah.

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shanaqui
Sleeping Giants | Sylvain Neuvel
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Pickpick

Enjoyed this reread, as ever. I was so confused recently by reading a review where someone said the anonymous interviewer is a cookie cutter bad guy. He's not a good guy... but bad guy isn't quite right, either. He's nothing so simple.

As ever, creeping my way towards a line in ways best known to myself, heh. #BookSpinBingo

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shanaqui
Fallen Idols | ALEX VON. TUNZELMANN

This book discusses various toppled statues by placing them in their historical context, both their raising and their toppling. Some corners of history I knew comparatively little about are covered!

I'm finding it surprisingly slow going for something I'm enjoying, though. Oh well.

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shanaqui
Sleeping Giants | Sylvain Neuvel

Rereading (again) with the hope of finally finishing the trilogy this time! I can never read this without thinking of the interviewer as Agent Coulson from Avengers.

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shanaqui
Untitled | Unknown
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I got... SOME books for my birthday. 👀

TheSpineView Wow! Happy Birthday!🤩🤩🤩 2mo
Clare-Dragonfly Ooooh. Happy birthday! 🎉 2mo
tessavi Congratulations! And great presents 😍 2mo
20 likes3 comments
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shanaqui
Something Fabulous | Alexis Hall
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Pickpick

This... was very melodramatic and over the top, and I tried to enjoy it as such rather than get too caught up in “yep, she did actually shoot him and that could possibly have killed him“. I get why I've seen some reviews feeling that Valentine gets bullied, but I don't think it's meant that way -- the melodrama is partly pastiche.

I found myself reading big chunks of this in no time at all. Lots of fun.

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shanaqui
Mehso-so

Not my thing. The detective is totally opaque, the reader doesn't get clues to solve it themselves.

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shanaqui

This is heavy on the imaginative reconstruction, which bugs me a lot. Also, though there is a bibliography, there aren't any footnotes, so it's hard to source any claims.

I'm enjoying it as a light read, but I'd hoped for more. I remembered quite enjoying the author's work on the Lewis Chessmen, but maybe I'm misremembering?! Or her style/intended audience has changed?

It's a shame, because I love rediscovering our non-male warriors!

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shanaqui
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Pickpick

All finished up this morning. I found it interesting, but I was a little disappointed that it focused so heavily on animal cognition. I'd expected a bit more general animal behaviour stuff, I guess?

Making some progress for #BookSpinBingo, anyway! Not sure any of these lines are going to meet up, though, heh.

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shanaqui
Something Fabulous | Alexis Hall

Every day is too warm at the moment, so I'm about to go have a cool bath to try and get myself comfortable enough to sleep. This book will be going with me and causing inappropriate snorking noises (come on, it's a great made up word for the undignified giggle-snort-laugh, as usually reserved for Georgette Heyer and K.J. Charles' work), I'm sure.

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shanaqui
Something Fabulous | Alexis Hall

I keep starting more books on a whim, and hey, this is my #DoubleSpin (or maybe my #BookSpin and Den of Wolves is my #DoubleSpin, I can't remember right now). So far I'm having fun; all feels a little anachronistic, but it seems nicer than some reviews led me to believe!

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shanaqui

Picking this up now, on a whim, since it's been a bit since I read a mystery! So far I'm not in love with it; reminds me a bit of the style of John Dickson Carr.

Still, just glad my brain is finding the idea of reading compelling again lately!

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shanaqui
Into the Windwracked Wilds | A Deborah Baker
Pickpick

Received to review.

I liked the addition of the new character here, and learning more about the Crow Girl! And eeeek, I wonder what will happen when Avery and Zib return, at this rate -- they'll have changed so much. If they ever go home?

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shanaqui
Pickpick

Received to review.

I didn't love this one quite as much as the second in the series, but there was definitely a lot to enjoy. Mostly Almost Brilliant, of course.

I liked the fact that Chih didn't get all the answers they wanted, and that there were questions left about the stories... that's how it goes, sometimes!

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shanaqui
Persephone Station | Stina Leicht
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Pickpick

The curse is truly broken! I really enjoyed this actually: it was an interesting take on aliens (well, aliens-to-humans), and I found myself reading it in big chunks. #BookSpinBingo

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shanaqui
Den of Wolves | Juliet Marillier
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Okay, gotta start this up for #BookSpin! I've been putting it off for a while because in a sense I'd wanted Blackthorn and Grim to maintain a non-romantic relationship, with just as strong a bond. But... here we go.

And here's the #BookSpinBingo card for this month. Not sure yet what line I might go for...

Nutmegnc OMG I LOVE Blackthorn and Grim!! I‘ve read and reread fifty times!! I loved the audiobook too!! You won‘t be disappointed with anything that Janet Marillier writes!! 2mo
14 likes1 comment
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shanaqui
Persephone Station | Stina Leicht
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Late to post my #BookSpin list, but I made the list before I saw the numbers, promise!

And though Persephone's Station has persisted as the only book unread on my list since January, I'm happy to announce I actually picked it up a couple of days ago and it should be finished this month. The curse is broken.

I'm about 33% of the way through, and enjoying it. Very curious about a few things...

Clare-Dragonfly Hooray, I‘m glad the curse is broken! 2mo
19 likes1 comment
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shanaqui
The Hands of the Emperor | Victoria Goddard
Pickpick

Well!

This book is well worth the time-investment, and I loved it very, very much. There's a certain repetitiveness to it as people underestimate Cliopher and he comes out on top, but in a way that -- to me -- was delightful. It is “hopepunk“ and wish fulfillment and I love it dearly.

EXCEPT. HOW CAN IT END THERE WHEN I STILL HAVE QUESTIONS?

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shanaqui
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Pickpick

I made it to a bingo! #BookSpinBingo I wanted to finish The Hands of the Emperor too before I start my card for August... hopefully I'll manage it tomorrow.

This installment of the series restored my faith in Colin a bit, but I'm still mad about his patronising behaviour in Dangerous to Know, and I'm disinclined to trust him. Bleh. I know it keeps him from being too good to be true, but I'd prefer some other part of his character be compromised.

Clare-Dragonfly Ooh, we got the same bingo! 😄 2mo
11 likes1 comment
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shanaqui
The Library Book | Susan Orlean
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Pickpick

Looks like I might get a #BookSpinBingo after all, now I've finished my #DoubleSpin!

I really liked this book; it's less about the library fire in some ways and more just a history of the whole library, and a little of the development of how libraries are framed through history. Which might sound dry, but there's plenty of fascinating detail.

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shanaqui
The Library Book | Susan Orlean

I'm finding this riveting and wishing I had time to finish it today, aaah. Though it feels weird to spend so much time on Harry Peak when, idk, it doesn't seem like arson was his style?

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shanaqui
The Hands of the Emperor | Victoria Goddard

After burning myself out on this last month by making it into an obligation, like a dummy, I'm back to adoring this. I just love the interactions between Kip and his Radiancy. Also, my interest is piqued about the other stories in the same world.

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shanaqui
Library Book | Susan Orlean
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Need to read this for my #DoubleSpin, so I've just started digging in. It's a horrifying description of a fire, for sure, and I can't help but wonder if any of those firemen suffered longer-term effects...

Trying to figure out a line in #BookSpinBingo, too. It's been a weird old month, and I haven't at all read the things I intended to read! But I have options now, if I read speedily.

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shanaqui

This is actually a reread for me, mostly just because it's soothing and I couldn't remember which objects got picked!

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shanaqui
The Duke Heist | Erica Ridley

It's funny reading this *after* having read the second book; I'd normally never do that, but I was assured it wouldn't matter. It doesn't, much, but they definitely are in the expected chronological order, so I do know a little of how things turn out.

I was initially really unsure about the male lead and how his behaviour in the prequel novella would actually lend itself to him being a romantic interest, but I'm warming to him rapidly.

Clare-Dragonfly I am so often assured of that and always regret it, even if only a little, when I listen 🙄 3mo
shanaqui @Clare-Dragonfly Yeah, even with romance where each book will focus heavily on a single relationship, unless each book is happening simultaneously or totally unconnected, I still prefer to read in the correct sequence. It's often not a BIG deal, it's totally possible... But it still matters! 3mo
10 likes2 comments
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shanaqui

Been a few days at least since I was around here; the heat had me withdrawing into survival mode! It's cooler today, thank goodness. I need to look at #BookSpin and #DoubleSpin because I've forgotten what I'm reading, and I've not even thought about #BookSpinBingo... but for now I'm reading this ARC, because little snippets about cryptids felt about my speed after the last few days!

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shanaqui
Crook O'Lune | E. C. R. Lorac
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Every time Wales play, my wife and I put a tenner on them. (We don't generally gamble, but the way the media etc all bet against the team drives us nuts.) Even if everyone is betting they lose. Last week they beat the Springboks in SA for the first time ever. The end result, in short, is that I was woken up today by my wife piling the results of our winnings on me. 😁 New E.C.R. Lorac! 💙💙

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shanaqui
Siren Queen | Nghi Vo
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Love the Tam Lin reference, in case anyone hadn't caught on about the Fairyland connection at this point. I have a friend who'll want to read this just for that.

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shanaqui
Hard Reboot | Django Wexler
Pickpick

Jiminy Cricket, this fortnight just hasn't stopped. Hospital appointment, heatwave, water leak and a full day without running water in 30 degree heat (in the UK, so no air conditioning or anything)... but I have managed to get a little reading done! Hard Reboot was fun without being that deep. Mecha fighting!

I enjoyed it for the cool factor, but it wasn't much more than that.

Smrloomis Good for you for getting some reading in. That sounds pretty stressful so I hope things settle down a bit from here on out! 3mo
13 likes1 comment
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shanaqui
River of Teeth | Sarah Gailey

I was thinking about this and trying to remember the story. Couldn't, but I love hippos and I could use a comfort reread, so why not? All I remember so far is that I love Hero.

willaful I started this and got grossed out *real* fast. 3mo
shanaqui @willaful There's definitely some scenes that are not pretty! 3mo
willaful It's a shame because I also love hippos. At least in theory. :-) 3mo
11 likes3 comments
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shanaqui
Pickpick

This was really good. It was kind of slow at the start, and it doesn't help at all that Kinyoun was kind of an asshole (however right he was about needing to contain the spread of plague). Once Blue was called in and some things started being done competently, it became pretty riveting. It's a bit sad that Blue became bitter toward the end of his career -- but he had, in the end, a career to be very proud of, and his work in SF was exemplary.

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shanaqui

I'm developing myself a new public health hero in the form of Rupert Blue! I love the fact that he may not have been the most academically able person, but he was able to succeed where others failed because he made connections, listened to people's needs, and looked at the evidence beyond his own prejudices.