News at Grab the Lapels:
Whether to read library books or books I own is an ongoing saga at my house. Here’s what happened:
Just this past week, I signed up for Daily Lit. This site helps you get in bits of classics each day by emailing you an excerpt of a novel. I got this idea from Briana at Pages Unbound, and I’m already several chapters into The Brothers Karamazov.
I also own a copy of Fyodor Dostoevsky’s novel, which I keep in my huge TBR tote in my closet, and I wanted to pull the chonky book out so I could review passages before bed that I had that day read on email. Although the rule had been I could only buy books as long as the fit in the tote and the lid could close, there was a pile of books (lid off) spilling all over the place because I’ve been buying Friends of the Library sale books because my home library weeds aggressively!
I loaded up almost all the library books in my possession (40+) and returned them in the drop slot that morning. Not only did I feel better, but Kitty had more room to chill on the table by the window.
So, I’m back to reading my oldest and newest books to clear away the mess I’ve made in a few short months (short, like two). If I “need” a library book and it’s gone, I’ll inter-library loan it.
This Week’s Blog Posts:
Audiobooks don’t seem as popular on book blogs as I wish they were — I know Bill @ Australian Legend and Nicole @ Read. Eat. Sleep. Repeat. are fans — but I still have mini reviews of audio works planned for 2020. I started by pairing Shirley Jackson’s memoirs about her family life, excerpts of which originally appeared in women’s magazines and likely affected what Jackson was willing to include. My reviews are HERE.
If you didn’t read along with Jackie @ Death by Tsundoku and I last year as we consumed 16 Mercedes Lackey (and later Larry Dixon) Valdemar novels, you haven’t missed your chance. This year, we’re going back in Valdemar chronology, so there are places you could jump in with no confusion, including a stand-alone novel that would be a great taste of the adventure. The reading schedule and jump-in recommendations can be found HERE.
Next Week’s Blog Posts:
Thanks to Oscar buzz, the film Can You Ever Forgive Me? starring Melissa McCarthy entered the public conscious. However, the movie about Lee Israel forging letters by famous people was first a memoir. I’ll post my review of it on Tuesday.
Along with Emily @ Literary Elephant, I’m reading My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier. It’s the first time for both of us, though I’ve seen the movie starring Sam Claflin and Rachel Weisz. Fortunately, the 2017 film hasn’t ruined the book, as no film truly captures a du Maurier. Check back Thursday for my review.
Book I’m Reading Aloud to My Spouse:
Uncle Joss, the monster landlord of of an inn no one patronizes, continues to terrorize and threaten in Daphne du Maurier’s Jamaica Inn. Funny that I’m reading two du Maurier’s right now, but I can’t get enough of her complex characters and vivid settings.
I’ve read Jamaica Inn before, so it’s interesting to hear the spouse’s thoughts about the characters. He’s drawn to my attention two interesting points: that there is more mystery to the novel than I had perceived, especially because readers don’t know how complicit Aunt Patience is in her husband’s bad dealings, and heroine Mary Yellen continues to make assumptions about events, but lacks evidences.
Secondly, the only other du Maurier the spouse has read (or had read to him, by me) was Rebecca. He noticed both novels are about a fish out of water, but that the water is very different.
Books Added to the TBR Pile:
I must have mentioned Debra Di Blasi’s books 100 times on this blog, but few are reviewed here because I read them pre-2013 when Grab the Lapels was created. Likely, I’m going to go back and read many of them soon. Exciting news: Di Blasi will be coming out with a memoir in 2020, and to start organizing for marketing, she asked if I knew any good blogs. Do I?! So, you may hear from her via whatever contact method you list on your site.