Sunday Lowdown #21

This Week’s Blog Posts:

Hard to put down, No Visible Bruises: What We Don’t Know About Domestic Violence, by journalist Rachel Louise Snyder, was informative, timely, and well-researched. It has colored some of my other reading, changing how I think about relationship dynamics in fiction.

Whether it was the voice actor or the translation (or reading No Visible Bruises), Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata absolutely did not click with me. Purportedly satire, I definitely got domestic horror/thriller vibes.

Next Week’s Blog Posts:

On Monday, July 1st, I’ll share all the books I plan to read this month. Are you interesting in reading along with me as I ingest all the first three Vampire Chronicle books by Anne Rice?

After a recommendation from my buddy Chase over on Goodreads, I chose The Snow Queen as the book to fulfill my “book set in space” bingo square. At 536 pages of complicated science fiction universe building, it was hard to get into, but totally worth it. Review coming Tuesday.

Thursday is July 4th, so I created a collage of red, white, and blue book covers to post that day. Mostly older reads I haven’t discussed in a while, I wanted to create a simple, welcoming post on Independence Day in the United States. ๐ŸŽ†๐ŸŒญ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿป๐ŸŽ‰

Why do women listen to heavy metal — a white, male-dominated music scene? Why would a black woman listen to it? Canadian writer Laina Dawes explores where black women fit into the metal scene and what resistance they face from both white and black people, largely supporting her arguments with interviews from individuals in lesser-known bands in her book What Are You Doing Here? A Black Woman’s Life and Liberation in Heavy Metal. Review to come Friday.

Slow Books in Progress:

Book by a Male Author: None right now.

Book I’m Reading Aloud to My Spouse: David Copperfield is having a shit go of things. His very young, widowed mother has married a man who moves into their house, brings his bossy sister, and kicks poor Davy out! All after Davy had such a lovely fortnight holiday with his house servant, Peggotty, and her family on the house boat. He’s the most sweet and polite boy, highly educated.

Bookish Conversation & Weekend Adventure:

Thanks to a baby turning one, Jackie made the trek from Wisconsin to lower Michigan with some friends to attend the party. Fortunately, northern Indiana is not far away! I drove the hour to Paw Paw, MI (a small town featured in a graphic novel I read years ago called Little Fish) to snatch Miss Jackie away from her friends, squoosh her in a huge hug, and get coffee.

After catching up on life, we discussed Winds of Fury. We decided that instead of doing our regular conversation post, we would describe our time together talking about the book. For me, what I most noticed was the way Jackie and I are very different readers, which I find fascinating. She focuses on details, so when she said she wanted to know more about a crater with magic items in the castle, I gave her a huge WTF stare. I don’t remember this at all. Since my background is in writing stories and teaching writing, I think more about the small things, such as diction. I could rattle off specific examples of times author Mercedes Lackey used the same word twice in one sentence.

Jackie also ends each book with a large list of questions Lackey did not answer, so she said she hopes the next novels are more revealing. For some reason, unless something logically makes zero sense, I don’t develop questions when I read. I get lost in the feelings I experience while I’m buried in the pages, so I tend to hope following trilogies will recreate deep feelings I had that were powerful and keep characters unique so I can attach my feelings to those people. Winds of Fury was the first book we read that made us feel very differently, and our reviews (hers/mine) show that. What an interesting experience!

We also chose our winner for the January – June giveaway for #ReadingValdemar: Kim @ Travelling in Books! Thanks to everyone who participated. Kim has won $20 to Book Depository. The July – December giveaway will be an omnibus copy of EXILES OF VALDEMAR. Details coming soon.

Two hours sped by and I had to return Jackie in time for the dragon/taco themed birthday party. I gave her a squoosh hug again and headed back to Indiana.

Books Added to the TBR Pile:


  1. You guys look very happy together, but then you always sound happy together in your interchanges here. I’m currently stuck in Melbourne, Aust. so I had dinner last night with my fellow blogger Lisa of ANZLitLovers, always fun to catch up. Good on you for buying E.Jean Carroll, hope you read it soon, I see the NYT admits it underplayed her accusations.


    • I don’t know anything about Csrroll, but I fell down this taking hole of library searches at work the other day and found her.

      Did you and Lisa take a picture? You should! I love when bloggers get together!


  2. Holey buckets, I won something! I never win drawings and the like. Woohoo! *lol*

    I feel a little jealous that you and Jackie got to meet up. I think the closest blogger I know is, well, Jackie, and even still she’s a long, long way from me.

    I read The Snow Queen years ago, and I remember really enjoying it, but for some reason, I never continued with that particular series. It might have been because I picked up another few of her books instead, and just never went back.


  3. It’s so nice that you and Jackie got to meet in person! I’ve met one blogging friend in person a few times (Jaclyn from Cover in Flour), and it’s always been so much fun. On that note, if you’re ever in the northeast and have some time, let me know!


    • I will DEFINITELY let you know. I would love to meet you. This was Jackie’s and my second time meeting. It’s made us closer; we text and send face messages almost daily. I’m happy to do that with any interested blogger!


    • We’re in the middle of chapter 7 right now, when Steerforth is goading his teacher until the poor man gets fired. And here I had such good feelings about Steerforth ๐Ÿ˜’


  4. What a lovely time you two had together. Blogging can be a strange experience: you interact with loads of people in cyberspace but never get to meet them in person. Last year I found some bloggers living not too far away from me so we can met up which has been great fun.


    • Oh, wonderful! Who did you meet up with? So far, Jackie is the only person I’ve actually met, though I almost met another woman. I think she got too shy and didn’t want to get together.


  5. How interesting about different reading styles. Iโ€™ve never really thought of that, but of course it has to be true that we process and retain information from books uniquely. Love this update. Glad you had a good visit with your friend. ๐Ÿ™‚


    • Thanks so much, Lorilin! Have you ever met another blogger in real life? I’ve only met Jackie, but I know when my husband lived in L.A. he met loads of people in real life he had only known online.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Iโ€™ve met one other bloggerโ€”a local, and very popular, book reviewer. I happened to meet her through an author we were both in contact with. It was a little weird! But then felt totally normal soon after haha. Good for your husband for being that brave. Iโ€™ll bet he has a lot of good stories. ๐Ÿ™‚


            • It’s like a video text, so you don’t have to both be on there to use it. If I send Jackie a marco polo now, she may check it after work. However, once you’re recording, you can’t undo it because if the other person IS available, they may start watching while you’re recording, which is much more “real time.”

              Liked by 1 person

  6. 1. You and Jackie have VERY similar glasses
    2. I think most Charles Dickens novels contain characters who are ‘having a shit go of things’ haha you could create a whole course based on that phrase alone
    3. I’m excited for your take on the Anne Rice books


    • 1. We do! Her’s are more pinky and mine are maroon. 2. What I like about David Copperfield so far is that it’s a big book, but the characters come and go at an even pace so that I can remember them all. Bleak House nearly threw me for a loop. Also, you wrote a swear! 3. Have you read the vampire chronicles? I’ve read Interview, Lestat, and about half of Queen. The books are much clearer about Louis’s emotions and Lestat’s intentions than the movie is!

      Liked by 1 person

Insert 2 Cents Here:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s