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Showing posts from December, 2016

My One Word meme

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Thanks to Brona at Brona's Books  I have discovered the My One Word meme hosted by Sheila@Book Journey .  This meme comes at a perfect time for me. The idea is to find one word to represent your new year. Sheila means that "a word can fluctuate - take on new meaning depending on the circumstances, and come out at the end with a whole new meaning then first anticipated." She has been kind enough to link to a list with words, and I think I have found my word for 2017. ... and the word for me will be SPARKLE! I want to sparkle this year, both for myself and for my projects. I want to think of myself first, to feel good, style myself, gather energy and find a positiveness in life. If I manage that I will be able to give more to my beloveds, family and friends. 2016 was a very busy year, with good things, but it generated a lot of work, and left me rather fatigued and without energy. I hope 2017 will see me make my life and everything around me sparkle. To gather en

Read 52 books in 52 weeks - TBR challenge

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Another challenge that will help me lower my TBR shelves. It is Robin of My Two Blessings hosting this very useful challenge. Go to the link to see all of the rules and to my  Challenge page for my own reading. I hope I will be able, and should be able, to finish this challenge without a problem. After all, even when I have no time to read, I read at least a book a week!

Merry Christmas!

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I wish all of my blogging friends out there a little bit of a late Merry Christmas.  I hope the holidays were nice and peaceful. I celebrated in the south of Sweden with family from both sides and I think we all enjoyed the Christmas time, in spite of it not being too Christmas like outside. But we always have a Disney hour with various Disney figures to look at. It is a tradition since 1960, and there, in the world of fairy tales, we get a feeling for the season.  Once this tradition has been done it is time for a Christmas smorgasbord, Christmas presents and a quiet evening.

The Witch of Portobello by Paulo Coelho

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Paulo Coelho has written a wonderful, beautiful story of a modern life. It is done through a set of interviews with people who encountered Athena, a young woman who left a lasting impression on all who met her. She is born in Transylvania to an unmarried gypsy woman, and is given away for adoption. She is adopted by a Libanes couple and her first years are spent there. When the war comes, they move to London. She studies, meets a man, gets married and has a son. But something is missing in her life, so she decides to leave her marriage, take her son and search for something she does not really know what it is. By chance, as so often happens when you let go of controlling things, she comes in contact with people with special gifts. Gifts which are not always explainable. Through a special dance she finds piece and with it comes a search for something higher in life. Coelho has created a lovely character in Athena, and in her search for something to live for, he contemplates the d

Jane Austen x 2

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Sense and Sensibility Recently I have read two books by Jane Austen. It is always a pleasure…or almost. I like some books more than others. I started with Classic spin #14 which guided me to  Sense and Sensibility . It has been on my shelves for ever, and I don't know why I have not got around to read it. Well, now was the time, and I am happy to say that I did manage - for once - to finalise one of my classics in time. Surprisingly, because I was always thinking this was one of her best and most famous books, I did not like it. I thought the story rather simple. Ok, this is maybe the norm for these kind of books, but normally Jane Austen manages to capture a lot of, I would not call them actions, but happenings along the way. Here I thought it was just ono long uphill account of trivia that could not engage me. The only one really engaging me as a character was Elinor, and she is not enough to carry the whole book. The story is the usual. Two rather poor, but not desperately

Keyword Reading Challenge 2017

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Claudia at My Soul Called Life is hosting the 2017 Keyword Reading Challenge . Sounds like another great challenge so I am in. So, how does it work? Claudia has chosen six keywords associated with each month in 2017. Our task is to read one book each month whose title includes one or more of the keywords for that month. As usual I will head for my TBR shelves first. If I don't find anything there I will look for a suitable book. After all, one has to read some new books as well! Here are your 2017 Keywords JAN- Court, Fall, Of, Way, Deep, Thousand FEB- And, Rose, Promise, Every, Deception, Blazing MAR- Shall, Go, By, Silence, Her, Saga APR- From, Trigger, Tale, His, Crown, Mist MAY- Four, Wind, All, Fury, Days, Shade JUN- Without, Know, Good, Watch, One, Have JUL- Before, Final, All, Freedom, Life, Dream AUG- Sun, Infinite, Big, My, Wherever, Most SEP- Sand, From, Between, Ever, Reasons, Clash OCT- Darker, You, Ashes, Out, House, Sea NOV- Place, War, Hea

A Sea of Leaves

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Went for a walk in the forest yesterday. Since it was mid-day, there were not that many people around. Probably out making errands and preparing for Christmas. Although no sun, a lovely day and we were swimming in a Sea of Leaves!

Finalised challenge - Full House Reading Challenge for 2016

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As of 8 December, 2016, I have finalised this challenge. I am quite happy about it. Partly, because most, if not all, of the books come from my TBR shelves. I did change one title, which is allowed, and that was 'Debut novel'. I just could not find any, or did not look hard enough. You never know. I changed it to a 'Nobel Prize Winner' instead. One has to take advantage of having read one of those winners. It does not happen every day, or even every year! Great challenge! Thank you to Kathryn at Book Date for hosting. Luckily, she is also hosting for 2017, and I have already signed up! Author you wish was known better - Alex Connor - The Other Rembrandt Published in 2016 - The High Mountains of Portugal by Yann Martel Book from series you love - The Black Moon by Winston Graham Debut novel - change to Nobel Prize Winner - Nässlorna blomma (Flowering Nettle) by Harry Martinsson Thought Provoking book - The Sage of Waterloo by Leona Francombe Had lau

The Binding Chair by Kathryn Harrison

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May is only five years old when her grandmother imposes the Chinese tradition of foot binding to her. This affects her whole life, but being the strong person she is, she refuses to let it hinder her in her ambitions. Married to an older man who already have three wives, she is faced with a cruel man, his wives and a humiliating life. But May is not the person to suffer silently, so she breaks away and starts a new life as a prostitute. The aim is to find a wealthy Englishman to marry. She starts by learning English. Life does not always turns out as is expected and May stays longer in her profession as she had anticipated. But one day Arthur Cohen turns up in her room and her life changes forever. He is not there for the usual reason, but comes as a representative of the "Foot Emancipation Society". He is there to help her, but falls hopelessly in love. He proposes to May who is reluctant to venture into a marriage with Arthur, who is a somewhat confused man. However, his

Full House Reading Challenge 2017

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I love this Challenge hosted by Kathryn at Bookdate   and participated during 2016 (almost finished it, but not quite). As with most Challenges I join, I try to use them to lower the number of books on my TBR shelves. This is a perfect challenge to do that. My aim will therefore be to read as many books as possible from my own shelves.  
 You will find the rules under the link above, but in short, you have to read one book from each category below. One can be changed if you so like. Here are the categories (for easy updating I choose to list them. I am not entirely sure how to update the chart): 
 Non fiction -   The Pursuit of Glory - The Five Revolutions that made Modern Europe 1648 - 1815 by Tim Banning       On TBR for 2+ years -     Blondie by Joyce Carol Oates     More than 500 pages - Buddenbrooks by Thomas Mann Page Turner - Middle Grade Book - 2017 published - Published pre 2000 - An Instant of the Finger Post by Iain Pears (1997) UK/European author

6 Degrees of Separation Meme

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6 Degrees of Separation is a monthly meme hosted by Kate @Books Are My Favourite and Best . This is my first entry with 6 Degrees of Separation . I find it interesting to follow a thread in what I read. One book leading to another, be it the same author, the same genre, the same theme or the same anything. A link is a way to discover new books, places and people. The 3 December book is Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates. I have not read this book, neither seen the movie. But I always intended to, but the future will tell. From there I would use Road as the connecting word and go on to a new purchase; All Roads Lead to Austen - A yearlong Journey with Jane by Amy Elizabeth Smith. Austen is always interesting and this seems to be a new way to approach her. Naturally the connection is Austen so I choose Northanger Abbey which I recently read and just loved. It comes out as my second favourite Austen (after Pride and Prejudice of course). The thread here is Abbey which ma

Book Festival

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The yearly Book Festival took place here in Belgium from 1-4 December. I took the car and went over to Mechelen, a town, just outside of Brussels, on the way to Antwerp, where this festival normally takes place. As usual there were a lot of books, mainly in Dutch, but also some in French and English. Furthermore, they also offer hobby material for scrap booking, journaling etc. A little bit like Christmas in advance. Although I should not buy too many new books, I just can not resist such an event. The books are cheap and you always find some classics and discover books you have never heard of before. Although I really restricted myself, I came away with eleven books! And interesting ones. Can't wait to read them. Here they are in no specific order, just the pile on my desk. All Roads Lead to Austen - A yearlong Journey with Jane by Amy Elizabeth Smith "With a suitcase full of Jane Austen novels en espanol, Amy Elizabeth Smith set off on a yearlong Latin American advent

European Reading Challenge 2017

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Rose City Reader is doing the  European Reading Challenge again for 2017. I participated in 2015, I think, and it is also a great challenge. I will go for the five star (deluxe entourage) which means to read at least five books by different European authors or books set in different European countries. Under the link above you will find the rules and link-up for this challenge. As for the other challenges I will aim at reducing my TBR shelves. Here are the five books I will read. The Go-Between by J.P. Hartley (UK) Goodbye to Berlin by Christopher Isherwood (Germany) Nåden har ingen lag by Torgny Lindgren (Sweden) Stalin, the Red Tsar by Simon Sebag Montefiore (Russia) Pansarhjärta by Joe Nesbo (Norway) I realise that I have mainly kept myself in Northern Europe. But, that is where I am from, and I take this opportunity to finish a couple of books that have been on my shelves a long time.

Classic Spin #14 - review

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Believe it or not, but for once I managed to finalise the book for the Classic Club spin , in due time as well. My number one was Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen. It has lived a quiet life on my TBR shelves for quite a few years. I love Austen, so there is really no excuse why I have shunned this one. Or is there? I always thought that it was considered one of her best books, without knowing exactly why. After having read it, it will end up as the one I like the least. I thought it was a really boring book, or as Shakespeare put it: "Much ado about nothing!" The heroine was not very likeable, that is Marianne. Elinor, her sister was much more in my taste. In short, Mrs Dashwood becomes a widow, without much money to help her take care of the family. The brother is a total *%()" (you know what I mean), under influence of his terrible wife, and, although he has the means to support them he convinces himself that he has no obligation!?!? Mrs Dashwood is offered a