Sunday Lowdown #41

Interesting Facts From School This Week:

We’re more than half-way through the course, and this week was about databases vs. web searches. Again, I taught rhetoric & research for eleven years, so the lessons weren’t new to me. But, I did learn about free online databases of which I had not been aware. If you live in Indiana, INSPIRE is a free collection of databases funded by a state grant.

Got someone in your life who seems to know nothing about computers? Maybe they want to know how to get a job, and all applications are online these days? There is a free database called GFC Global that will walk people through step-by-step on topics such as computer basics, resumes, and job seeking. It’s a fantastic resource. Free!

This Week’s Blog Posts:

It was a busy week with three very different works reviewed. Monday brought you Made for Love, an audio book written by Alissa Nutting and read by Suzanne Elise Freeman. A wild story about independence, technology, and sexual intimacy that goes bizarre-o rather quickly, I liked that it made me think about just how different people are in their definitions of “intimacy.”

Wednesday I did a 180 and read a perfectly respectable novella called The Girl Who Reads on the Métro by Christine Féret-Fleury, translated from the French by Ros Schwartz. With an existentialist feel, this slight book is less about plot and more focused on. . . well, maybe you can tell me.

Friday was a bummer! A poorly drawn graphic novel with no sense of a basic color wheel, Cannonball by Kelsey Wroten let me down hard. I didn’t really need what is basically Lena Dunham’s life if she never made it in entertainment in graphic form. We’re not rooting for Lena Dunham-types in America.

Next Week’s Blog Posts:

Due to a hiccup at the library, Jackie @ Death by Tsundoku didn’t get her copy of Owlsight by Mercedes Lackey and Larry Dixon until this week, meaning we pushed back our reviews for #ReadingValdemar. You’ll see my thoughts on the sophomore novel of the OWL MAGE trilogy bright and early Monday.

Wednesday brings my review of a novel that is marketed all wrong but was beautiful-darkness just the same. Kristen Arnett’s debut novel, Mostly Dead Things, is sure to please literary lovers and weirdos alike.

Lastly, thanks to our mega-long adventure with Charles Dickens in David Copperfield, I got the audio book of The Victorian City by Judith Flanders, read by Corrie James. All things London over the course of Dickens life; it’s a lot to take it, so should you listen, read, or both? Check out my review Friday.

Book I’m Reading Aloud to My Spouse:

We’re making our way through a collection of short stories called Hauntings: Tales of the Supernatural, edited by Henry Mazzeo. So far we’re read —

  • “The Lonesome Place” by August Derleth
  • “In the Vault” by H.P. Lovecraft
  • “The Man Who Collected Poe” by Robert Bloch
  • “Where Angels Fear” by Manly Wade Wellman
  • “Lot No. 249” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

I love the spooky, atmospheric tales, ones that remind you of the persistent dread you felt as a child every time it got dark, you had to go in the basement or attic, the trees’ leaves rubbed together too crisply, laid in bed with your feet 1000% UNDER THE COVERS. The spouse isn’t as impressed, having skipped that whole I-can-hear-spiders-in-the-walls phase I went through as a child and going right into proper adulthood.

Books Added to the TBR Pile:

There is a whole heap of graphic novels added to my TBR, and I’ll explain why in a big ranty post coming soon about the public library. It’s led to yet another ridiculous plan, and you know I’m the Ruler of Ridiculous Reading Plans.


  1. I’m really bad with graphic novels so will look out for those with interest. I think I read too quickly so I skip through the text and don’t look at the pictures properly. The image on the front of Kid Gloves is arresting, I have to say.


    • My husband reads graphic novels REALLY fast, so much that I often challenge (jerk that I am) how carefully he’s reading/looking. I was just writing back and forth with Bill in Australia, and he said graphic novels over there are always around $30. I wonder if they’re more expensive, and if you can get the same ones, in the U.K.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I just had a poke around and it looks like they’re £7 and up – books are cheaper here than in Australia, though, I think, in general. People do that to me, too – I just read fast, I still take it in! But not drawn pages so much …

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I read One Hundred Nights of Hero not too long ago and really enjoyed it. I have a couple of things I would rather it had left out, but was very amused while reading it. I’m still very much a graphic novel novice, but I do really like them when I get a chance to read them. Hope you have a good week!


  3. I love Edward Gorey so that supernatural tales book looks delightful! I’ve been curious about Manderley Forever but have read mixed reviews of it. Will look forward to hearing your thoughts on it. And big ugh to Lena Dunham-types.


  4. Wait wait wait. Nick isn’t scared from these stories?! How dare he just skip over that part of childhood! I would think it would be worse now, as he never conquered those fears as a child. But, knowing Nick, I’m not all that surprised…. Drat. Hauntings has quite the diverse collection of authors included. How was this compiled?

    Also. Gurl. That TBR? Madness. How on earth will you read them all?! I kid, I kid. We never read them all. Are any library books?


    • The books on my TBR are all graphic novels from the library. I usually finish a graphic novel in two days (for some reason I never sit there and read them cover to cover).

      I think Nick was more focused on other things that are scary that you don’t have to imagine. He’s a darling and goes with me to scary movies in theater, but if we’re at home he’ll sit in the other room. He’s a complex dood.

      Liked by 1 person

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