jjmcgaffey's reading in 2018, second tranche

Dies ist die Fortführung des Themas jjmcgaffey's reading in 2018.

ForumClub Read 2018

Melde dich bei LibraryThing an, um Nachrichten zu schreiben.

jjmcgaffey's reading in 2018, second tranche

Dieses Thema ruht momentan. Die letzte Nachricht liegt mehr als 90 Tage zurück. Du kannst es wieder aufgreifen, indem du eine neue Antwort schreibst.

1jjmcgaffey
Sept. 19, 2018, 3:53am

My third year in Club Read - hope I can bring in more conversations in my thread. I'd love to discuss my reviews - did you read the same book, and do you agree or have a completely different opinion about it?

I'm Jennifer; I live in Alameda, CA, with two cats. My parents live down the street (about a mile and a half away); one sister in Mountain View, about 45 minutes away, and the other in Reno, about 4 hours' drive away. I'm a Foreign Service brat who grew up moving around the world (more or less literally); it's very strange to me to be living in the same house for the 13th year this year. I cook, garden, stitch, do ceramics (taking a ceramics class, for the second time, from my local senior center), sew, weave, braid, program, fix computers (run a home computer repair business) - and oh yeah, read.

I read mostly genre fiction - primarily science fiction and fantasy, which get grouped together as SF (speculative fiction). Then romances, mysteries, animal books, children's books (which include examples of all the genres...). I also read a lot of non-fiction - biography, sciences, history, words, etc. And craft books and cookbooks, which don't so much get _read_ but do get used and referenced. I don't read horror, and I don't read literary fiction - in both cases, because I don't enjoy being depressed by my reading.

So the goals I'm setting for this year are the same as last year: 150 books read (I fully expect to exceed that); 50 books discarded; and 50 BOMBs (Books Off My Bookshelf) read - books I've owned for over a year that I've never read. I reached all three goals last year - books read easily (over 200), discards just over, and BOMBs eked out in the last few days of the year. I'm keeping my rules from last year too - one BOMB read for each reread I want to do. I'm not counting any other kind of book, even books for review (Early Reviewers, Netgalley, etc) - they'll count only if they're over a year old (and I have way too many of those...). I'll track them, though, and may think of some prize for myself if I read a bunch of them.

Books Read



BOMBs



Books discarded

2jjmcgaffey
Sept. 19, 2018, 3:54am

Reading Rules

1 BOMB read for every reread; cannot read in arrears.

At least 4 BOMBs read every month (or read nothing but BOMBs at the beginning of the month until caught up).

3jjmcgaffey
Sept. 19, 2018, 3:54am

# indicates re-read, % indicates borrowed book, @ indicates ebook, * indicates BOMB, ! indicates ER etc, ^ indicates new book

Reading January-March

January
1. Moths of the Limberlost - @^ - by Gene Stratton-Porter.
2. The General Zapped an Angel - * - by Howard Fast.
3. Block Party - @^ - by Sharon Lee & Steve Miller.
4. The Incubus Job - @! - by Diana Pharaoh Francis.
5. Dragon's Breath - * - by E.D. Baker.
6. The Fairy Bridge Troll - @! - by Leah Cutter.
7. The Meri - @!* - by Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff.
8. On Ordeal - @^ - by Diane Duane.
9. The Guild - @^ - by Jean Johnson.
10. Beauvallet - @* - by Georgette Heyer.
11. Once Upon a Curse - * - by E.D. Baker.
12. The Brightest Fell - @^ - by Seanan McGuire.
13. The Best Revenge - @# - by Justine Davis.
14. Codgerspace - * - by Alan Dean Foster.
15. Timekeepers - @! - by Simon Garfield.
16. Rules for Reforming a Rake - @! - by Meara Platt.
17. Whiskey River Runaway - @! - by Justine Davis.

February
18. Soo Canal! - ^ - by William Ratigan.
19. Ars Historica - @! - by Marie Brennan.
20. Wild Hawk - @^ - by Justine Davis.
21. Maps to Nowhere - @! - by Marie Brennan.
22. Freedom's Landing - @# - by Anne McCaffrey.
23. Freedom's Choice - @# - by Anne McCaffrey.
24. Freedom's Challenge - @# - by Anne McCaffrey.
25. Freedom's Ransom - @# - by Anne McCaffrey.
26. The Prisoner of Zenda - @* - by Anthony Hope.
27. Faro's Daughter - @* - by Georgette Heyer.
28. The Kin - @* - by Peter Dickinson.
29. Alaskan Dawn - @^ - by Edie Claire.
30. (Un)bidden - @^ - by Melissa Haag.
31. Emmitt's Treasure - @^ - by Melissa Haag.
32. Leaving Lana'i - @^ - by Edie Claire.
33. Luke's Dream - @^ - by Melissa Haag.
34. Thomas' Heart - @^ - by Melissa Haag.
35. (Dis)content - @^ - by Melissa Haag.
36. Carlos' Peace - @^ - by Melissa Haag.

March
37. Bodyguard of Lies - @^ - by Erin M. Hartshorn.
38. The Temple - @^ - by Jean Johnson.
39. Into the Fire - @^ - by Elizabeth Moon.
40. A Vicarage Reunion - @! - by Kate Hewitt.
41. Beneath the Sugar Sky - @^ - by Seanan McGuire.
42. Wheel of Stars - @* - by Andre Norton.
43. Illyrian Adventure - * - by Lloyd Alexander.
44. Mindtouch - @^ - by M.C.A. Hogarth.
45. Three Men in a Boat - @^ - by Jerome K. Jerome.
46. Who in the World Was the Secretive Printer? - ^ - by Robert Beckham.
47. To Say Nothing of the Dog - @* - by Connie Willis.
48. Tempests and Slaughter - @^ - by Tamora Pierce.
49. Earthweb - @* - by Marc Stiegler.
50. Far Harbor - * - by Melisa C. Michaels.

4jjmcgaffey
Sept. 19, 2018, 3:54am

# indicates re-read, % indicates borrowed book, @ indicates ebook, * indicates BOMB, ! indicates ER etc, ^ indicates new book

Reading April-June

April
51. Press Start to Play - @^ - by John Joseph Adams ed.
52. No Place for Magic - * - by E.D. Baker.
53. Mindline - @^ - by M.C.A. Hogarth.
54. Dreamhearth - @^ - by M.C.A. Hogarth.
55. The Salamander Spell - * - by E.D. Baker.
56. Lord of the Storm - @# - by Justine Davis.
57. Complete Little Orphan Annie Vol 13 - ^ - by Harold Gray.
58. The Skypirate - @# - by Justine Davis.
59. The Kingbird - @^ - by Justine Davis.
60. Rebel Prince - @^ - by Justine Davis.
61. Raider - @^ - by Justine Davis.
62. Freedom, Spiced and Drunk - @^ - by M.C.A. Hogarth.
63. Maui Winds - @^ - by Edie Claire.
64. Family - @^ - by M.C.A. Hogarth.
65. Kris Longknife Among the Kicking Birds - @^ - by Mike Shepherd.
66. Burn Bright - @^ - by Patricia Briggs.
67. 100 Greatest Science Discoveries of All Time - @^ - by Kendall Haven.
68. A Town Like Alice - * - by Nevil Shute.
69. Into the Moonless Night - @! - by A.E. Decker.
70. Lior and the Sea - @^ - by Diane Duane.
71. Tortall: A Spy's Guide - @^ - by Tamora Pierce.
72. Neogenesis - @^ - by Sharon Lee & Steve Miller.
73. Earthrise - @^ - by M.C.A Hogarth.
74. All Passion Spent - @^ - by Vita Sackville-West.
75. The Spheres in the Knot {ss} - @^ - by Jean Johnson.
76. Project Emergence - @! - by Jamie Zakian.

May
77. From Canal Boy to President - @^ - by Horatio Alger.
78. The King and the Book - @^ - by Jean Johnson.
79. Mystery on the Mountain - @^ - by Jean Johnson.
80. A Call to Arms - @# - by David Weber & Timothy Zahn.
81. The Shield Ring - * - by Rosemary Sutcliff.
82. A Call to Vengeance - @^ - by David Weber & Timothy Zahn.
83. Whiskey River Rescue - @^ - by Justine Davis.
84. Whiskey River Rockstar - @! - by Justine Davis.
85. Return of the Cowgirl - @! - by Eve Gaddy.
86. Uncompromising Honor - @^ - by David Weber.
87. Wizard's Hall - * - by Jane Yolen.
88. In The Wet - @^ - by Nevil Shute.
89. Rose Point - @^ - by M.C.A Hogarth.
90. Never Buried - @^ - by Edie Claire.

June
91. Interim Errantry - @# - by Diane Duane.
92. Stealing the Elf-King's Roses - Author's Cut - @#^ - by Diane Duane.
93. The Seventh Bride - @^ - by T. Kingfisher.
94. Trustee From the Toolroom - @# - by Nevil Shute.
95. Gunnerkrigg Court Vol 1 - @# - by Thomas Siddell.
96. Ladycastle - @^ - by Delilah S. Dawson.
97. Spellcast - @^ - by Barbara Ashford.
98. Lumberjanes Vol 1 - @^ - by Noelle Stevenson.
99. Steed and Mrs. Peel Vol 1 - @^ - by Mark Waid.
100. Things I Want My Daughters to Know - !* - by Elizabeth Noble.
101. Stardust - * - by Neil Gaiman.
102. Big Buttes Book - @! - by Henry Buttes.
103. Rabbit Hill - * - by Robert Lawson.
104. The Golem - ^ - by Barbara Rogasky.
105. Gambler - @^ - by Justine Davis.
106. Kris Longknife's Bad Day - @^ - by Mike Shepherd.
107. Black Star, Bright Dawn - ^ - by Scott O'Dell.
108. Magic Elizabeth - * - by Norma Kassirer.
109. Endless Blue - @^ - by Wen Spencer.
110. Tricks for Free - @^ - by Seanan McGuire.
111. The Voyage of the Frog - * - by Gary Paulsen.
112. Princess Tales - * - by Gail Carson Levine.

5jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Okt. 1, 2018, 12:18am

# indicates re-read, % indicates borrowed book, @ indicates ebook, * indicates BOMB, ! indicates ER etc, ^ indicates new book

Reading July-September

July
113. Sun, Moon, Dust - @^ - by Ursula Vernon.
114. Gib Rides Home - * - by Zilpha Keatley Snyder.
115. The Trouble With Tink - * - by Kiki Thorpe.
116. The Thief - * - by Megan Whalen Turner.
117. Everything and More - @# - by David Foster Wallace.
118. Laisrathera - @^ - by M.C.A Hogarth.
119. A Rose Point Holiday - @^ - by M.C.A Hogarth.
120. Dreamstorm - @^ - by M.C.A Hogarth.
121. The Two-Step - ^ - by Eileen McCann.
122. Alysha's Fall - @^ - by M.C.A. Hogarth.
123. The Girl in the Green Silk Gown - @^ - by Seanan McGuire.
124. A Logical Magician - # - by Robert Weinberg.

August
125. A Calculated Magic - * - by Robert Weinberg.
126. Sawdust in His Shoes - ! - by Eloise Jarvis McGraw.
127. Seven Wild Sisters - ^ - by Charles de Lint.
128. Spellcrossed - @* - by Barbara Ashford.
129. The Prey and the Ghost - ^ - by Roger Leloup.
130. The Time Spiral - ^ - by Roger Leloup.
131. Daughter of the Wind - ^ - by Roger Leloup.
132. The Devil's Organ - ^ - by Roger Leloup.
133. The Forge of Vulcan - ^ - by Roger Leloup.
134. Michael and the Elf - ^ - by Kathryn Sullivan.
135. Beyond the Enchanted Duplicator...To the Enchanted Convention - ^ - by Walter Willis & James White.
136. The Enchanted Duplicator - @^ - by Walter Willis & Bob Shaw.
137. The City of Lightning - ^ - by Phil Foglio.
138. The Incorruptible Library - ^ - by Phil Foglio.
139. The Privilege of Peace - @^ - by Tanya Huff.
140. Kings and Wizards - ^ - by Phil Foglio.
141. The Curious Trio - %^ - by Roger Leloup.
142. On the Edge of Life - %^ - by Roger Leloup.
143. The Dragon of Hong Kong - %^ - by Roger Leloup.
144. The Morning of the World - %^ - by Roger Leloup.
145. Rebel Pilot, Texas Doctor - @! - by Eve Gaddy.
146. Shifting Plains - - by Jean Johnson.
147. The Dead Lands - @! - by Rick Hautala.
148. Kristina The Girl King - ^ - by Carolyn Meyer.
149. Famous Phonies - ^ - by Brianna DuMont.
150. Lake Tahoe, A Maritime History - ^ - by Peter Goin.
151. Longshot - # - by Dick Francis.
152. The Lightning Thief - * - by Rick Riordan.

September
153. A Spoonful of Magic - ^ - by Irene Radford.
154. Young Warriors - @^ - by Tamora Pierce & Josepha Sherman.
155. A Hero for Antonia - * - by Elisabeth Kidd.
156. Skylar’s Outlaw - * - by Linda Warren.
157. Mackenzie’s Woman - * - by JoAnn Ross.
158. His Child or Hers? - * - by Dawn Stewardson.
159. Lord Braybrook's Penniless Bride - * - by Elizabeth Rolls.
160. Fantastical Ramblings - @! - by Irene Radford.
161. The Return of Rafe McKade - * - by Nora Roberts.
162. Penric's Fox - @^ - by Lois McMasters Bujold.
163. The Rose Legacy - @^ - by Jessica Day George.
164. Spinning Silver - @^ - by Naomi Novik.
165. Alien Taste - @# - by Wen Spencer.
166. Tainted Trail - @# - by Wen Spencer.
167. Bitter Waters - @# - by Wen Spencer.
168. Dog Warrior - @# - by Wen Spencer.
169. The Willing Wife - * - by Claudia Dain.
170. Saved by the Monarch - * - by Dana Marton.
171. Wonders Never Cease - * - by Debra Salonen.
172. Rough & Tumble - @^ - by Rhenna Morgan.
173. Wild & Sweet - @^ - by Rhenna Morgan.
174. The Substitute Guest - * - by Grace Livingston Hill.
175. Claim & Protect - @^ - by Rhenna Morgan.
176. The Engine Woman's Light - @! - by Laurel Anne Hill.
177. Tempted & Taken - @^ - by Rhenna Morgan.

6jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Jan. 2, 2019, 2:04am

# indicates re-read, % indicates borrowed book, @ indicates ebook, * indicates BOMB, ! indicates ER etc, ^ indicates new book

Reading October-December

October
178. Night and Silence - @^ - by Seanan McGuire.
179. Stand & Deliver - @^ - by Rhenna Morgan.
180. Stand-In Bride - * - by Barbara Boswell.
181. Dusssie - @^ - by Nancy Springer.
182. Little Saint Elizabeth and Other Stories - @^ - by Frances Hodgson Burnett.
183. The Store Boy - @# - by Horatio Alger.
184. Catch a Falling Star - * - by Tracy Hughes.
185. Even the Wingless - @^ - by M.C.A. Hogarth.
186. Second - @^ - by M.C.A Hogarth.
187. Chas Addams Half-Baked Cookbook - @^ - by Charles Addams.
188. Devil's Match - * - by Anita Mills.
189. A Bride for Adam - * - by Muriel Jensen.
190. In Serena's Web - * - by Kay Hooper.
191. The Unsung Hero - # - by Suzanne Brockmann.
192. I Meet Such People! - # - by Gurney Williams.
193. Dragon's Code - %^ - by Gigi McCaffrey.
194. Raven on the Wing - * - by Kay Hooper.
195. Rafferty's Wife - * - by Kay Hooper.
196. The Defiant Hero - # - by Suzanne Brockmann.
197. Over the Edge - * - by Suzanne Brockmann.
198. The Laughing Cavalier - @^ - by Baroness Emmuska Orczy.
199. Zach's Law - @^ - by Kay Hooper.
200. The Fall of Lucas Kendrick - @^ - by Kay Hooper.
201. Unmasking Kelsey - @^ - by Kay Hooper.
202. Outlaw Derek - @^ - by Kay Hooper.
203. Rurouni Kenshin Vol 3: A Reason to Act - ^ - by Nobuhiro Watsuki.
204. Better Homes and Gardens Make It, Don't Buy It - @^ - by Better Homes & Gardens.
205. The Twelve Days of Christmas : Correspondence - %^ - by John Julius Norwich.
206. Sabine's Notebook - %^ - by Nick Bantock.
207. The Golden Mean - %^ - by Nick Bantock.
208. Griffin and Sabine - %^ - by Nick Bantock.
209. The Furthest Station - %^ - by Ben Aaronovitch.
210. The Ghost and Mrs. Muir - @# - by Josephine Leslie.
211. Off Leash - @^ - by Daniel Potter.
212. Thirteenth Child - @# - by Patricia Wrede.
213. Across the Great Barrier - @# - by Patricia Wrede.
214. The Far West - @# - by Patricia Wrede.
215. A Scandal in Battersea - @^ - by Mercedes Lackey.
216. Captain's Paradise - @^ - by Kay Hooper.
217. Kris Longknife's Maid Goes on Strike - @^ - by Mike Shepherd.
218. A Bad Beginning - ^ - by Lemony Snicket.
219. Seedfolks - ^ - by Paul Fleischman.
220. Brady's Bend and Other Ballads - # - by Martha Keller.
221. Taminy - * - by Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff.
222. Chuck and Danielle - # - by Peter Dickinson.
223. Some Things Transcend - @^ - by M.C.A Hogarth.

November
224. Eight Cousins - # - by Louisa May Alcott.
225. Rose in Bloom - # - by Louisa May Alcott.
226. Very Rich - @^ - by Polly Horvath.
227. Woodland Tales - * - by Ernest Thompson Seton.
228. The Ordinary Princess - # - by M.M. Kaye.
229. Only an Irish Boy - @^ - by Horatio Alger.
230. Enchanted Glass - # - by Diana Wynne Jones.
231. The Prince's Wedding - # - by Justine Davis.
232. And Condors Danced - * - by Zilpha Keatley Snyder.
233. The Hills Have Spies - @^ - by Mercedes Lackey.
234. An Expert in Murder - @^ - by Nicola Upson.
235. Emissary - @^ - by Mike Shepherd.
236. The Bravest Princess - @^ - by E.D. Baker.
237. Princess In Disguise - @^ - by E.D. Baker.
238. Lost in Translation - # - by Margaret Ball.
239. The Other Woman's Son - # - by Darlene Gardner.
240. Raiders From the Rings - * - by Alan Nourse.
241. The Sea of Monsters - * - by Rick Riordan.
242. Sundiver - @^ - by David Brin.
243. Velveteen Vs the Seasons - @^ - by Seanan McGuire.
244. The Invisible Garden - @! - by Valerie Picard.
245. xkcd Volume 0 - @^ - by Randall Munroe.
246. Summer in Orcus - ^ - by T. Kingfisher.
247. Silver Scales - @^ - by L. Rowyn.
248. Lammas Night - * - by Katherine Kurtz.
249. The Shadow Gate - # - by Margaret Ball.

December
250. The Book of Humans - @! - by Adam Rutherford.
251. That Does Not Compute! - @^ - by Jim Whiting.
252. Beguilement - @# - by Lois McMasters Bujold.
253. Legacy - @# - by Lois McMasters Bujold.
254. Passage - @# - by Lois McMasters Bujold.
255. Horizon - @# - by Lois McMasters Bujold.

7jjmcgaffey
Sept. 19, 2018, 3:55am

Reserved in case I need it.

8jjmcgaffey
Sept. 19, 2018, 3:55am

New thread open!

9NanaCC
Sept. 19, 2018, 2:11pm

Happy new thread, Jennifer!

10quondame
Sept. 19, 2018, 6:19pm

Happy new thread!

11jjmcgaffey
Sept. 20, 2018, 5:39am

Thanks! It's fun to get enough messages to make this worthwhile. I'm still pretty flat with this stupid cold - reading quite a bit, though.

12jjmcgaffey
Sept. 20, 2018, 5:56am

Books Read
164. Alien Taste @# by Wen Spencer. Review - Multiple reread - great as always. Weird at the beginning, where I knew the answers to the questions Ukiah was beginning to ask…
165. Tainted Trail @# by Wen Spencer. Review - Next in the series, and excellent as always.
166. Bitter Waters @# by Wen Spencer. Review - A new enemy and some nice twists.
167. Dog Warrior @# by Wen Spencer. Review - Suddenly a new POV - I like Atticus, wish we got more of him.
168. The Willing Wife * by Claudia Dain. Review - Not bad, not wonderful. Good medieval romance - no anachronisms.

Currently Reading
Still Wonders Never Cease - it's a little too fluffy for my taste right now, so it keeps getting put aside. Nothing else, at the moment.

BOMBs
The Willing Wife.

Discards
The Willing Wife - and The Return of Rafe MacKade, I got the ebook(s of the whole series) so I'm dumping the paper copy.

New/Reread
Four rereads (so now I only have 18 rereads paid for) and one new.

Argh. My cold keeps getting better - and then coming back and knocking me down again. I truly hate this. However, I am getting a lot of books read and a lot of book boxes tagged and scanned, plus other chores around the house. Still, it's really boring - and I have clients who need me and I don't want to go and infect them. Bleah. So I went for some comfort reads, for a while. Don't know what I'll read next - something or other. I'm sorting another box, next, so I may pull a book from there.

13quondame
Sept. 20, 2018, 3:16pm

>12 jjmcgaffey: I loved the feel of Wen Spencer's Alien Taste books, though I agree with her that she resolved the main conflict too soon - though more that the main conflict wasn't optimally chosen. The characters, setting and framework were so cool. I'd love a series about a, well, flexible, detective.

I'm sorry your cold is so persistent. I hope you shake it immediately!

14jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Sept. 21, 2018, 4:32am

Oddly enough, Wen Spencer's breakthrough book, Tinker, and the rest of that series...really don't catch me. I love her weird stuff - Ukiah, Endless Blue, Eight Million Gods, somewhat A Brother's Price. I really want to read The Black Wolves of Boston - sometime soon. But yeah, Wen Spencer is definitely an author I keep track of.

I'm feeling a little better right now, and not trusting it. We'll see.

15quondame
Sept. 22, 2018, 2:04am

>14 jjmcgaffey: I'm following Wen Spencer on Patreon and she seems to be writing the next BW book right in front of us - I love the bits, but I really like the surprises in her books too.

I've enjoyed everything she's written, but have a soft spot for Endless Blue.

16jjmcgaffey
Sept. 23, 2018, 3:19am

Good lord. This doing boxes thing is dangerous - I keep picking up a book just to see what it's about, and if I get past the first chapter I consider myself to be reading it. My currently reading list is exploding...8 books, all romances of many and varied types. The good thing is, they're quick reads - I just need to spend some time actually finishing some. And all but one are BOMBs, and there's probably a good many discards there too. It's very good...if I'd just finish some of them instead of picking up more.

17ronincats
Sept. 26, 2018, 11:04pm

Are you feeling better yet?

18jjmcgaffey
Sept. 27, 2018, 5:03pm

Better but not well. I have my energy back - so not serious any more - but I'm still coughing and sniffling and have an intermittent (mild) sore throat. But at this point it's describable as "just a cold" - annoying but not anything like the knockdown the other was. I'm back to doing stuff - shopping, visiting my parents, working, etc. And the book boxes have slowed way down...though I'm still working through the currently reading pile that the last one generated, so there's that.

19jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Sept. 27, 2018, 6:20pm

Books Read
169. Saved by the Monarch * by Dana Marton. Review - Nice bit of fluff - unrealistic but fun.
170. Wonders Never Cease * by Debra Salonen. Review - Eh. Sweet story with random (very random) complications thrown at it.
171. Rough & Tumble @^ by Rhenna Morgan. Review - Weird book - I have problems with the language, but the story is _fantastic_.
172. Wild & Sweet @^ by Rhenna Morgan. Review - Another fantastic story with annoying editing problems.
173. The Substitute Guest * by Grace Livingston Hill. Review - Very preachy, but a sweet story.

Currently Reading
The Engine Woman's Light for a review site - I don't think I'll get any more of their books, this one is well-written and totally uninteresting. It's labeled steampunk, I'd call it magic realism, or surrealism. Nothing makes sense, even before the random spirits started showing up. And five more romances, out of my book box.

BOMBs
Three of the five.

Discards
The first two are discards. I'm hanging on to The Substitute Guest for a while (and the Rhenna Morgans are a) ebooks and b) keepers).

New/Reread
All new. 21 rereads paid for, at this point...and my goals for the month have been totally blown away. 10 BOMBs done and 7 discards - and I have four more BOMBs in process.

20jjmcgaffey
Sept. 30, 2018, 2:12am

Heh. Messed up the numbers again. I've actually read 174 books (well, 177, but I haven't posted the last three yet) - I had two 155s. Not going to change my posts, it's too much trouble, but I renumbered the lists in the first few posts.

21quondame
Sept. 30, 2018, 12:48pm

>20 jjmcgaffey: It's so easy to copy the previous entry and update the important bits. I don't keep statistics beyond book count, so I only have to fix numbers. Probably missed a few.

22jjmcgaffey
Sept. 30, 2018, 11:13pm

I've got a spreadsheet that does 90% of the formatting for me - but if I mess up on the first page, where I actually list my books, it goes wonky on all the other pages for stats and the LT posts. No biggie, I'm only keeping track for myself anyway.

23jjmcgaffey
Okt. 1, 2018, 12:14am

Books Read
175. Claim & Protect @^ by Rhenna Morgan. Review - Trevor and Nat - nice twist, adding Levi. Slightly more kinky, equally fantastic emotional connection, and better editing (not perfect, but better).
176. The Engine Woman's Light @! by Laurel Anne Hill. Review - Ugh. Magic realism, not steampunk - and nasty, ugly story besides.
177. Tempted & Taken @^ by Rhenna Morgan. Review - Interesting new angle - I like Darya, Knox's problem is a slightly different angle. And hot, and better editing. The kink goes even further (building up to Axel?).

Currently Reading
Night and Silence by Seanan McGuire, the latest October Daye book. Stand & Deliver, the next Rhenna Morgan (I didn't know it was out until after I'd started Night and Silence). The rest of the romance pile - I kind of stalled, because none of them are up to Rhenna's style, which is why I went to the Seanan (very different style, but equally good).

BOMBs
Nope - three ebooks.

Discards
The Engine Woman's Light - nope, not keeping this one around. It doesn't count, since it's an ebook, but I'm deleting it anyway.

New/Reread
All new. 21 rereads paid for.

I'm not going to finish any more books tonight, mostly because I'm going to bed pretty soon. I've had two very short nights in a row and I'm glazing over - need a nice long sleep tonight.

24jjmcgaffey
Okt. 1, 2018, 12:16am

September stats
25 books read
4 rereads
21 new books
21 rereads paid for

7699 pages read, average 308

10 BOMBs - passedblew away my goal for the month
1 ER books
1 Netgalley books

14 ebooks, 11 paper books

7 discards - passed my goal for the month

11 SF&F
14 romances

25 F, 0 M authors

Very limited genres this month - and every book was by a woman. Sheesh. But very good on my BOMB and discards goals - I have 9 and 7 to go for the year, easy peasy.

25jjmcgaffey
Okt. 5, 2018, 3:26am

Books Read
178. Night and Silence @^ by Seanan McGuire. Review - MOTS - the usual fantastic Toby story. Her family tree is...beyond words.
179. Stand & Deliver @^ by Rhenna Morgan. Review - Still very good, but somehow I don't like it as much as the earlier books. Too many control issues, maybe.
180. Stand-In Bride * by Barbara Boswell. Review - Eh, OK fluff. Nice twist on the uses of insta-lust.
181. Dusssie @^ by Nancy Springer. Review - Neat little story of a girl who finds out she's a gorgon. Slightly heavy-handed moral, but still good.
182. Little Saint Elizabeth and Other Stories @^ by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Review - Not really a fun read. Elizabeth is painfully sweet and dumb (not her fault, but…). Fairyfoot isn't bad, Robin is incredibly annoying. So is the wheat grain, and Baby in Behind the White Brick, the girl isn't bad.
183. The Store Boy @# by Horatio Alger. Review - Reread - it sounded familiar, but all of Alger does. Didn't realize I'd already read it until I checked LT.
184. Catch a Falling Star * by Tracy Hughes. Review - Ugh. One-note characters, and most of the story is about the wrong marriage. Depressing.

Currently Reading
Even the Wingless by M.C.A. Hogarth - weird, nasty in some ways but not at all depressing. And fascinating, like most of hers. Still working on the pile of romances - it's down to three, plus a childrens book.

BOMBs
Two BOMBs - Stand-in Bride and Catch a Falling Star.

Discards
Both BOMBs. I'd get rid of Little Saint Elizabeth if it were in paper, but as an ebook it's worth keeping, I think.

New/Reread
6 new reads, one reread (that I didn't realize was one until after I was done). 22 rereads paid for.

I was sick again - nothing major, just a(nother) cold, but a couple days without much energy. Read a lot, most of it pretty fluffy.

I started ceramics again today - made a molded bowl, a small plate, and a full-size plate. We'll see how they come out. I'll work on them on Tuesday, and hopefully they'll be dry enough to bisque fire next Thursday. Today was a glaze fire and of course I had nothing - try to get into a pattern so I have something for each firing, from now on.

26jjmcgaffey
Okt. 11, 2018, 2:13am

Books Read
185. Even the Wingless @^ by M.C.A. Hogarth. Review - Oh. Wow. As rich and absorbing as Dreamhealers, and a vivid depiction of harshness and cruelty and viciousness - without ever wallowing in it. Fantastic. I don't think I could read the next one right away - but it won't be long.
186. Second @^ by M.C.A Hogarth. Review - Neat! Alysha as an ensign. Unfortunately I don't _have_ the next one, yet...frust.
187. Chas Addams Half-Baked Cookbook @^ by Charles Addams. Review - Um. Cute collection of cooking-related Addams cartoons, plus some recipes that were supposed to sound horrific but some sound quite good…
188. Devil's Match * by Anita Mills. Review - OK fluff - very unlikely. It does lean on the misunderstandings trope a lot, though.
189. A Bride for Adam * by Muriel Jensen. Review - Sweet, once the manipulation and outright lying gets dealt with. Not terrible, not a favorite.
190. In Serena's Web * by Kay Hooper. Review - Another manipulator, though Serena has better intentions. It ended up quite enjoyable, and I'd like to read more in the series.
191. The Unsung Hero # by Suzanne Brockmann. Review - Worth reading, worth rereading - I'd forgotten a lot of the details. Fun.
192. I Meet Such People! # by Gurney Williams. Review - Cute collection of cartoons plus "how to sell cartoons, in 1946".

Currently Reading
The Laughing Cavalier by Baroness Orczy. Really annoying format - the author sticks her oar in way too much (style of the time, I think). The story is finally starting, I think, about 10 chapters in.

BOMBs
Three BOMBs, finishing my pile of romances out of the book boxes. Also passing my goal for the month.

Discards
Two discards - Devil's Match and A Bride for Adam. I'm not sure about I Meet Such People!, yet. Met my goal for the month.

New/Reread
6 new, 2 rereads (one not intentional, I couldn't remember if I'd read I Meet Such People! before). 23 rereads paid for.

Doing very well on BOMBs and discards - I have respectively 4 and 3 more to meet my goals for the year. Bet I'm done before December! Especially since I have two more in the Hooper series, which are also BOMBs. I don't think they'll be discards, though. I keep forgetting how good Hooper is - especially since most of what I've read from her are the rather horrific Bishop series(es), not usually to my taste. She's good enough I'll still read them, but her straight romances are usually more fun. Sort of the same for Brockmann, without the horrific bit - I don't know why I keep stopping reading her, especially since she has so many I haven't read yet.

27jjmcgaffey
Okt. 11, 2018, 2:38am

Went to ceramics workshop on Tuesday - I did some finishing on the small plate and the bowl, but I wrapped the big plate too well. It's still completely wet and not removable from the plate it's molded on. Oh well, wrapped it more lightly and left it for Thursday. Also started to make a mold for a molded leather sunglasses case - except I got it mixed up (it's hard to think in negative space). Hopefully it will still be manipulable on Thursday, and I'll reshape it more usefully. If not, I'll have to start again. Oh blast, I didn't mark the bowl with my initials - do that Thursday, too. The small plate is marked. I'm doing the bowl the same way I did the last one - the foot is not attached, I'll fire it as a separate ring, then glaze the bottom of the bowl and set it on the ring to adhere in the glaze firing. It worked very well last time, hope it works again. I'm going to try to imitate Roni's striped glaze on the bowl; we'll see if the glazes I have will do the same things.

Not much else going on. I'm beginning to prep for the election on November 6th - I've done my class, need to call my team (which is, as usual, fluctuating wildly). I'll be volunteering for the East Bay Mini Maker Faire on the 21st - turns out I'll be helping a chocolate maker do demos. They work things rather differently than the San Mateo Faire.

I've finished inventorying and scanning all the fiction books in my boxes; now I need to start the non-fiction (another 20 boxes, though not all of them are full). It's very nice to know where those books are, I've already gone in and gotten particular books I wanted to read out. 20 boxes of fiction, and 15 of just SF (for a total of 35 boxes finished). SF means both science fiction and fantasy to me. The rest of the fiction includes mysteries, romances, childrens books, historical fiction, animal books, and "FicGen" - not otherwise categorizable.

The non-fiction is everything from cookbooks (far too many of them) to biographies, science and history books, craft books, travel, and "other". I'll be scanning some of those on the big scanner, I think - I have a normal-size (8.5x14) scanner next to the computer, that I use most of the time, but I also have a large-format printer that can scan up to tabloid (11x17) size works. A good many cookbooks and art books need that - and a few comics collections and graphic novels.

It's also getting late enough in the year I need to start working on cleaning out my planters. I didn't, last year, and this year my tomato crop was awful. I think the soil has wilt in it. So I need to pull the tomatoes, harvest the basil and carrots, remove most of the sorrel and give it away (it grows very well, but I really don't like sour flavors. I'll keep one plant, but the other four will go elsewhere), and cut back the New Zealand spinach. Then I start shifting the plants I want to keep from pot to pot as I empty out the pots, throw away most of the soil (since it has wilt), scrub out the pots and refill them with fresh soil. I also have one pot that's missing its props - it's an Earthbox, with a water reservoir at the bottom. The soil is supported on a pierced surface, which is in turn supported by a grid of plastic - and I don't have that grid, for one (of 5) pots. I'm going to try to create one, using my sister's laser cutter and plastic corrugated board. Right now there are small pots in the water reservoir, trying to hold up the pierced plate - but they're not doing a good job, and the surface has sunk below the hole where the water is supposed to overflow, so there's dirt leaking out there instead. I've worked out the design, I just need to a) get the corrugated plastic and b) turn my design into instructions for the laser cutter. Soon, since it's time to empty the pots (and of course that's the only time I can get down there and replace the grid).

28jjmcgaffey
Okt. 17, 2018, 1:46am

Books Read
193. Dragon's Code %^ by Gigi McCaffrey. Review - Argh. She didn't read Pern, either. OK story with noticeable screwups on basic (Pernese) facts.
194. Raven on the Wing * by Kay Hooper. Review - Lovely! I want the whole series…
195. Rafferty's Wife * by Kay Hooper. Review - Fun. I'm enjoying Hagen as much as the actual romances...it's fun watching him plot and be forestalled. Sort of.
196. The Defiant Hero # by Suzanne Brockmann. Review - Meh. Nils & Meg are really annoying - not even misunderstandings, it's (accurately) disbelieving. Sam & Alyssa are...also annoying, for (almost) entirely different reasons. Ralph & Eve are cute, though (though it's still all about lies).
197. Over the Edge * by Suzanne Brockmann. Review - Good - much better than Defiant Hero. I like both Teri and Stan, when they get their heads out of their respective rears. Sam & Alyssa is painful, so near and yet so far. Helga is...rather boring, and distracting - unrelated to the real story.

Currently Reading
Still slogging through The Laughing Cavalier. The story's solidly on, now, but every-bloody-one is behaving like idiots! Ghahh. Planning to start the next Troubleshooters tomorrow.

BOMBs
Nice lot of BOMBs - the two Hoopers (that's an excellent series, I now have all of them in ebook), and the third Troubleshooters book. I'm glad I finally pushed past Defiant Hero - I know I like Brockmann, but I was completely stalled on this series. Presenting it to myself as BOMBs worked.

Discards
All four owned - because I now have them as ebooks, so I can reread (or skip) as I wish. Returned Dragon's Code.

New/Reread
One reread, The Defiant Hero; the rest are new to me. 25 rereads paid for. Sheesh.

So my BOMB efforts are paying off in spades - I've now discarded more than my goal (I also discarded The Unsung Hero and In Serena's Web, from the last lot - again, because I have them as ebooks) and am one book short of my BOMB goal. I'm going to blow both of them away, this year. Yay!

I haven't gotten to another book box yet, though. I'm being very slow these days, about chores etc. Haven't cleaned out any planters, either - though I did harvest a couple carrots, and ate them. Yum! Huge, thick, very tasty carrots. I should harvest all of them, soon - they're on the edge of going woody and too hard to eat.

I went to ceramics workshop today, and did the striped glazes on the new bowl and small plate. We'll see how they come out - glaze fire this Thursday, so I'll see next week. The full-size plate is _finally_ dry enough to work on...and I didn't have time today to do it, so I wrapped it up heavily again and I'll smooth the edges etc on Thursday. Last Thursday I redid the mold and left it to dry; it should be good. But it wasn't dry enough (obviously) to be fired then, so it'll go in next next Thursday. I also made a little stamp with my initials; my plan is to use the stamp (I pressed in letters, from a set of small letter stamps) to make another stamp with my initials sticking _out_, and use that to mark my work later. We'll see how it goes.

So: glaze fire this Thursday, I have a bowl and a small plate to go in (with Roni's striped glaze). Also some pie weights - not glazed, but the hotter fire makes them stronger. Bisque fire next Thursday, my sunglasses mold, initial stamp, and probably the full-size plate will go into that...and maybe something else I'll make on Thursday, don't know what yet. It's good when I manage to get into a rhythm so there's something for each firing.

29LadyoftheLodge
Okt. 19, 2018, 3:30pm

I do enjoy your detailed postings--lots of fun to read and so personable!

30jjmcgaffey
Okt. 19, 2018, 8:39pm

>29 LadyoftheLodge: Thanks! I'm glad to hear it - I like telling what I've done, glad others like to read it.

31jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Okt. 21, 2018, 3:00am

Books Read
198. The Laughing Cavalier @^ by Baroness Emmuska Orczy. Review - Agggh, stupid! Partly it's a style thing, with the author being very obtrusive, but partly...every single person is extremely stupid at least once, and the heroine is extremely stupid most of the time. I think the original Pimpernel book was better...wasn't it?
199. Zach's Law @^ by Kay Hooper. Review - Cute, mostly because of extreme opposites. Standard Hagen plotline otherwise.
200. The Fall of Lucas Kendrick @^ by Kay Hooper. Review - The plotline is growing a bit stale; both characters here are...I don't know, they don't draw me. Not terrible, but not a favorite.
201. Unmasking Kelsey @^ by Kay Hooper. Review - OK, this one I like. Almost the same plotline, with a small twist, and it's nice to see what Kelsey's really like.
202. Outlaw Derek @^ by Kay Hooper. Review - Eh, not a favorite. Mostly because the heroine is really good at beating herself up, and it gets tiresome.
203. Rurouni Kenshin Vol 3: A Reason to Act ^ by Nobuhiro Watsuki. Review - Mildly interesting - it's only part of the story, of course. I'd pick up more if I saw it, but I won't seek it out.
204. Sabine's Notebook %^ by Nick Bantock. Review - Weird, but interesting.
205. The Golden Mean %^ by Nick Bantock. Review - Still interesting, a bit.
206. Griffin and Sabine %^ by Nick Bantock. Review - Having read the next two first - rather annoying.
207. The Furthest Station %^ by Ben Aaronovitch. Review - Fun little story, mostly self-contained.

Currently Reading
Taminy by Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff. It's...not very interesting - heavy load of politics and history which are referred to but not really explained, let alone made part of the story (this cyne and that one and I can't keep everyone straight). And an equally heavy load of misogyny. Thus and therefore, I'm reading lots of other, mostly short stuff in between, which is why so many books in so short a time.

Oh, I forgot - also reading The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. I thought I'd read it before, but I'm not remembering it as I read - odd. I have seen the movie, at least twice. The ebook has an intro talking about how wonderful the screenwriter for the movie was, all the characters and dialog he added and modified - now I'm going to have to watch it again to compare with the book. I wonder if the movie was ever turned into a book? It would be very interesting to compare that...

BOMBs
Um. Nope, no BOMBs.

Discards
One discard, the manga. The others are either borrowed or ebooks.

New/Reread
All new. Still 25 rereads paid for.

I've already read more books than any other month, and the second-most pages per month for this year. Interesting.

I pulled a bunch of books out of boxes, and Taminy was one of them - it's part of a series I read the first one of earlier this year. I thought it was a prequel, but it's actually an immediate sequel - if I'd realized that, I might have tried to read it immediately. Or not, I wasn't too happy with The Meri, either. I got bored with the Hagen books - they really are all the same plotline, in different settings. I will finish the series - they're still fun books - but not in straight sequence. Also a little bored with the Troubleshooters, though they're definitely _not_ the same plotline - but they all have the multiple romances tangling in each story. Again, I'll go back to it, but not right now. So reading random books - or one random book, Taminy is being enough of a slog that I haven't gotten to any of the others I pulled out yet. I also pulled out a bunch of David Brin books - he's Guest of Honor at Baycon next year, I really should have read some of his books by then...So not entirely random.

This weekend is the library book sale. I picked up three books on Friday, after helping with setup - Callahan's Con, which I don't _think_ I've read, and two cookbooks. I was planning to go to the East Bay Maker Faire tomorrow, Sunday, and thereby miss the box sale...but my volunteering fell through (the booth I was going to be at doesn't need me), and I'm weighing whether I want to go to the effort of going to the Faire (and finding parking, and paying for a ticket...) or just go to the booksale. Right now the booksale is winning - it's easier, and I know it's fun. Not, maybe, _as_ fun as the Faire - but I don't know what will be there, and I know what will be at the booksale. It's paying for the ticket (cheap, but still money) that's being the stopper - and driving up into Oakland and finding parking. I think I'll just go to the booksale. Maybe next year. Maybe next year I'll be exhibiting, we'll see.

Not much else going on. Thursday I smoothed the full-size plate, and made a little jar sort of thing. I should have made it a lid, maybe I'll do that Tuesday. Or not, it's not really very useful. I think that's all I did - didn't even make pie weights. Oh, no, I made another small plate, on a different form - see how that comes out. That's all. I dealt with everything that got bisqued last week on Tuesday.

32ronincats
Okt. 21, 2018, 11:24pm

You definitely should read some David Brin. His first science fiction trilogy is EXCELLENT!! The first, Sundiver, is the weakest of the three and you can skip it and come back later if you want. But you MUST read Startide Rising and The Uplift War. The latter is one of my most favorite science fiction books ever! Don't read the second trilogy in that universe. The first book is interesting but then he jumps the shark and I still haven't forgiven him. His fantasy, The Practice Effect, is just so-so. His noir detective book with clones, Kiln People is also quite good, and so is Earth, imho. I liked The Postman as well, although they made an indifferent movie of it--a post-apocalyptic book. Haven't read most of his collaborations.

Looking forward to photos of your pottery!

33jjmcgaffey
Okt. 22, 2018, 1:20am

Thank you! Now I know I need to find more books - what I have are Earth, The Practice Effect, The Postman, and (annoyingly) Startide Rising. So I need Sundiver and The Uplift War. I've read the short story that is the beginning of The Postman, and found it intriguing enough I want to read the rest of it. I hate reading a series out of order, so I'll find Sundiver first (before I read Startide Rising).

I did go to the booksale, and brought home a boxful of books - some are pretty small and I plan to read and dump them (unless they turn out to be wonderful, of course). I haven't counted them, let alone entered them yet. No Brins, though.

34ronincats
Okt. 23, 2018, 11:33am

They are only loosely connected, Jenn. Sundiver just happens to be in the same universe at an earlier time. But for sure get The Uplift War.

35LadyoftheLodge
Okt. 23, 2018, 7:48pm

I love booksales! We went to one at the beginning of October; it is huge and benefits a local food bank. Came home with two bags full--just what we needed! But it was half-price day . . .

36jjmcgaffey
Okt. 23, 2018, 9:58pm

>35 LadyoftheLodge: Yep. Sunday is bag/box day, which is why I came home with a boxful - only $5! And a lot of books that were only mildly interesting, because they were essentially free when they fit in the box...

>34 ronincats: OK. Maybe I will start with Startide Rising. Or maybe I'll stumble across the others sometime soon...

I've been doing quite a bit of reading - Taminy is still not really catching me, so I read a bit and then go read something else. I'm also doing some rereads, for a change - I let my phone reading app "find a random book" and it landed on Thirteenth Child by Patricia Wrede. It's an old favorite, and the first of a trilogy, so I'm reading those (just finished the first and started Across the Great Barrier).

Still haven't entered the book sale books, though I may get some in tonight. I've been fighting a gut problem for the last couple days - woke up coughing acid night before last, and my stomach's been acidy and upset ever since. It seems to have settled down a bit this evening, though (thank goodness). I think it was some white cheddar popcorn that triggered it, but everything seemed to keep it going...very boring.

Today was farmers market (I went with Mom, though I didn't buy anything) and then we went to the ceramics workshop at Mastick. Mom made progress on her serving dish - she's doing a picture in the bottom, like the Portuguese pots she has so many of. I meant to work on my garden plaque, sketching flowers etc around the words (on paper, I'm not ready to do anything in clay yet) but I got distracted with my little coil pot instead. I smoothed it out until it hardly looks coiled, and gave it a lid - and etched curving lines in lid and sides, so I can see how the lid is supposed to go on. I hope it ends up fitting, it's just sitting on the top of the pot. The whole thing is under two inches high and wide, but I like it. It's completely useless, too, oh well. It's pretty. It should be dry enough to bisque this Thursday, when the glazed stuff comes out.

This evening I made yogurt (well, it's still in process - fermenting) and baked bread. The two worked very well together. The funny thing is I've made this bread before, and I don't think it worked the same way - I ran into a few problems (the amount of flour in the recipe was short by almost a cup, for instance) that I don't remember having last time. And the stand mixer handled it a little oddly, partly because of the low flour - it was more like a batter than a dough, for quite a while. Again, I don't remember having these problems last time - but I don't remember how I did it, either. I may have hand-mixed it instead of using the stand mixer. Whatever. I got two loaves and about a third of the dough left over; I cut it up into little bits and baked bread balls. I'll eat it as dirty marbles, bubalki. I have some leftover poppyseed topping, from last New Years - it's been in the freezer, so it should be fine.

37ronincats
Okt. 23, 2018, 10:26pm

I found Wrede's Frontier Magic books interesting but they are not my favorites of hers. I love her early Lyra books and of course her Enchanted Forest books, and the one-off, The Seven Towers. The Sorcery and Cecelia trilogy and the Mairelon books fall in the middle. Although any book by Wrede is better than many others!

38jjmcgaffey
Okt. 24, 2018, 2:02am

Oh yes. I love the Enchanted Forest books, Mairelon, the Seven Towers, and many (though not all) of her Lyra books. I actually reread the first one, Shadow Magic, relatively recently and found it...weak. But The Raven Ring is fantastic, possibly my favorite of hers. I like the first Sorcery and Cecilia, but the following two are weak and weaker (mostly because of sticking to the epistolary style after the two heroines are together). The Frontier Magic books are better than Sorcery and Cecilia, to me, though not among her best. And yes, her weak ones are better than a lot of others!

39quondame
Okt. 25, 2018, 12:57am

>36 jjmcgaffey: >37 ronincats: >38 jjmcgaffey: For now Thirteenth Child is my favorite Patricia Wrede book, and I love Sorcery and Cecilia. I remember loving the Enchanted Forest books, but couldn't get into them when we got them for my daughter. I'm not sure if I've read some of the others.

40jjmcgaffey
Okt. 25, 2018, 2:18am

I actually read the Enchanted Forest books as they were written - which is a slight brain-twister. She wrote the "last" one, Dealing with Dragons, first, and then had to retcon an awful lot of things to make the series make sense...so Dealing actually states a good many things that aren't supported by the rest of the series. Which is OK with me - I like Cimorene a lot better than her kid (Dart? Something like that), and I can swallow "he doesn't know what really happened, so the story got it wrong".

I've finished the Frontier Magic series - two books in one day and the third on the next day. Lovely as usual. I remembered a good deal of all of them, but definitely not everything that went on - and I remembered some things wrong (much to my relief). The thing about (almost) all the Wrede books, for me, is the...the texture of them - the way she builds things so that they're solid, while I'm reading. Love it.

>39 quondame: You really ought to try The Raven Ring - it's set in a universe with consistent structure (maps, history, dangers), but it's not, directly, related to any of the other books in that "series", so effectively a standalone. And the heroine is fantastic - if you like Eff, you'll love her, I think.

41ronincats
Okt. 25, 2018, 2:34am

I LOVE The Raven Ring and agree it may be her best! But knowing the background of the civilizations in that world added to the depth of it for me, even if the characters are the highlight.

I also read the Enchanted Forest books as they were written and kind of like that you don't know what the heck is going on in Talking with Dragons and have to find out with Daystar what is going on, and then Shiara is a great character. I used to read the first chapter to sixth graders for Read Across America and then give the classroom the four book set, telling them they could start at either end.

42jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Okt. 25, 2018, 3:06am

Bleah, brain farts - yes, Talking, of course! and Daystar. I have the kind of brain that makes a consistent universe out of series - so some of the things described in Talking that didn't actually happen that way bug me. Not enough to keep me from reading and rereading the entire series, of course, but still... It didn't help that I think I read Talking to Dragons at least 3 times before the next/first book came out and utterly confused me.

Yes, knowing more of Lyra makes The Raven Ring richer, but it's a great story by itself too. I keep trying to make The Seven Towers a Lyra story too, but it utterly refuses (because it's not, of course...).

I just did the Halloween Hunt/Haunt - fun, as usual. I got 11 of them on my own...well, on my own aside from googling two things for number 5. Two (6 and 12) I knew the answers but had forgotten about the bit of LT where the candy was hiding, and two I really needed help. I was drawing a complete blank on #11 (I know her, but I don't read her books, and wasn't coming up with the name), and #7 I had an awful time finding the exact answer it wanted. Those four I used hints in the Talk thread.

43LadyoftheLodge
Bearbeitet: Okt. 25, 2018, 2:39pm

>38 jjmcgaffey: I agree about Sorcery and Cecilia. I read that one for a young adult books seminar some years back. The following books in the series seem to lose something. I found the epistolary style confusing and had to write notes to remember which person was whom. I think I will try The Grand Tour again for a MysteryCAT selection though.

I love hearing about your pottery work. I try to picture your projects--maybe you could post photos of them.

44jjmcgaffey
Okt. 25, 2018, 11:16pm

I'll try. I always _intend_ to take pictures and post them...but it didn't happen last class.

45quondame
Bearbeitet: Okt. 25, 2018, 11:28pm

>40 jjmcgaffey: I put a reservation in on The Raven Ring even before your latest recommendation so I guess that's a BB!

And searching about for the other Lyra novels uncovers the fact that I downloaded the series from Amazon when it was on sale. I guess I can cancel that reservation.

I know I've read Caught in Crystal a couple of times, but don't remember anything but the cover picture.

46jjmcgaffey
Okt. 26, 2018, 1:23am

Ah, the lovely "oh, that looks good" sales that then get tucked away into (digital) corners! Yeah, I've had that happen a few times.

Huh. I...can't remember the story of Caught in Crystal either. Is that the evil tower? (checking) Yeah. So I guess I did remember, sort of.

47jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Okt. 26, 2018, 1:35am

First ceramics picture of the semester...



The glazes are pretty, but a complete failure in the sense of what I was trying for. The cobalt didn't bleed/run enough, and the jades bled too much and blended entirely. There's (very faint) green stripes in the bowl, and very solid blue stripes on the plate (which has two shades of green - that worked OK). The bowl is about 5 inches across, the plate about 3.

I have a whole bunch of things in the bisque firing this week - a little coil pot with a lid, a full-size plate (which unfortunately warped in the drying...oh well. It's a bit curved up on two sides, like a (pretty flat) taco), a stamp with my initials on it, a thing that (if it works) will be a mold for a molded-leather glasses case...and I think I'm forgetting some stuff. I did write down what I worked on each day, but I don't feel like looking it up. Those will come out next Tuesday, probably.

48quondame
Okt. 26, 2018, 1:33am

>47 jjmcgaffey: I like the colors and subtle shading on the bowl.

49jjmcgaffey
Okt. 26, 2018, 1:36am

They're pretty. They're just not what I was trying for - a glaze pattern Roni uses, that makes a sort of star shape inside the bowl as the glazes run together. I'll try it again with different glazes...I know one that bleeds pretty well with the cobalt, maybe that will work.

50humouress
Okt. 28, 2018, 1:01pm

Hi Jenny; just catching up. Happy newish thread!

51LadyoftheLodge
Okt. 29, 2018, 11:15am

>47 jjmcgaffey: Thanks for the photos! I love the blue especially.

52jjmcgaffey
Okt. 30, 2018, 1:18am

Yes, I love that blue - the glaze is called Cobalt (no idea if it's actually made with cobalt), and I keep using it on stuff. I have a full-size plate made with Cobalt and...I've forgotten the color name, but it's the same brand of glaze in a bright green. I put it around the rim of the plate and it bled down over the cobalt - looks nice! I'll try Roni's glaze pattern with that, I think.

53jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Okt. 31, 2018, 9:55pm

Books Read
204. Better Homes and Gardens Make It, Don't Buy It @^ by Better Homes & Gardens. Review - Interesting recipes - and uninteresting ones, lots of peppers and vinegar. I'll be using it, I think.
205. The Twelve Days of Christmas : Correspondence %^ by John Julius Norwich. Review - Amusing, if slight. The illustrations are neat.

210. The Ghost and Mrs. Muir @# by Josephine Leslie. Review - Lovely story - and I have no idea if I'd read it before or only seen the movie.
211. Off Leash @^ by Daniel Potter. Review - Interesting - better than I expected, actually. I want the next one.
212. Thirteenth Child @# by Patricia Wrede. Review - Always love these books.
213. Across the Great Barrier @# by Patricia Wrede. Review - Lovely again - more!
214. The Far West @# by Patricia Wrede. Review - And an utterly satisfying conclusion. Wish she'd write more - maybe shorts? - though.
215. A Scandal in Battersea @^ by Mercedes Lackey. Review - Pretty good - not a favorite, but it's Nan and Sarah. And a really nasty enemy, with a rather icky cats-paw.
216. Captain's Paradise @^ by Kay Hooper. Review - Not bad; same plotline, but I like Michael and especially Robin. Nice perception.
217. Kris Longknife's Maid Goes on Strike @^ by Mike Shepherd. Review - Like most of these, it's not a story, it's a snippet. OK, not all that interesting.
218. A Bad Beginning ^ by Lemony Snicket. Review - He does _say_ it's going to be all bad. And says, and says...too much auctorial insertion, for me.
219. Seedfolks ^ by Paul Fleischman. Review - Cute little story about a guerrilla garden. Hopeful ending.
220. Brady's Bend and Other Ballads # by Martha Keller. Review - Lovely as always - great poems, about war and history, mostly. Very rich.
221. Taminy * by Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff. Review - Bleah. The story is all politics and history, the characters are puppets, and the language is distracting (cailin, qwen, Wicke…).

Currently Reading
Some Things Transcend, by M.C.A. Hogarth - fascinating, it's the next book after Even the Wingless. It's that setting - the Chatcaavan...well, border, anyway - but Jahir and Vasiht'h are there. Mental collision - their series was so much brighter than Prince's Game...there's some very strange things showing up now, but the characters are still true to themselves. Great story (like all Hogarths!). I haven't picked another paper book just yet, but I have a stack a foot and a half high that I've pulled out of boxes and off shelves to choose from.

BOMBs
Only Taminy.

Discards
Taminy, Seedfolks, and A Bad Beginning...huh, all the paper books I've read this period.

New/Reread
Five rereads - The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, the Frontier Magic trilogy, and Brady's Bend. Nine new books. And 22 rereads paid for.

Two books I missed from earlier (I read them just before Griffin & Sabine), then twelve books I've read while slogging through Taminy. I kept trying to find something else to read - and kept succeeding. Some good books, some not so wonderful, and all better than Taminy...OK, I'm done with it, I can forget Taminy now and go on to other things. And a ridiculous number of books (and pages) this month! And the month's not done...

Except one more thing - Taminy is my last BOMB for my goal! I've already reached...all my goals, actually. Books read, books discarded, and BOMBs read. Nice. I've never done that before, finish well before the end of the year.

I actually got rid of a book box! I compressed my SF books, and was able to empty a box. But then I sorted books I'd bought since I labeled the boxes into non-fiction, and added a box...oh well. I'm preparing to start inventory on the non-fiction. I have seven jam-packed boxes of cookbooks! Ridiculous - particularly since I don't _use_ cookbooks, I search for recipes online and copy them into Evernote. What I need to do is go through these cookbooks, mark the recipes I find interesting, and scan them into Evernote - that way I can actually use them, eventually. But it's going to take a while to do (seven boxes! Plus several shelves...). Inventory is the first step, so I know what I have. I may have some duplicates in there, too, though not many (LT does protect me from that). That's 7 of the 21 boxes of non-fiction I still need to inventory. Progress progresses...

54jjmcgaffey
Okt. 30, 2018, 1:47am

Had a lovely day yesterday; my parents and I collected my sister and her husband, and went down to Pacific Grove (at the bottom of the curve of Monterey Bay) to see monarch butterflies (not very many - it's still too warm, there's flowers blooming up north so they're still feeding - but some, and some birds as well) and to eat the world's best clam chowder at Vivolo's Cafe. Dad and I and Dee (my sister) love clam chowder, we pick it almost any time it's available - and there are a lot of bad clam chowders available. This one was just perfect. Enough clams and other seafood for flavor and texture, enough potatoes for creaminess, not floury-thick, fantastic flavor, just-right texture, wonderful. And we had it in sourdough bread bowls, and the bread was excellent all by itself and fantastic with the chowder soaking into it. The only problem was that the serving was large enough that I could only eat all the soup and half my bread bowl (and the lid, with garlic cheese toasted on it), and had no room for dessert. It was worth the trip. This was Dee's birthday present to Dad...oh, ten years ago? He loves butterflies, and particularly monarchs; she gave him a card for a trip to see the butterflies, and this is the first time we actually managed to do it. Long drive, though Dee's husband did most of the driving, and a long day, but a lot of fun.

Today I tried to donate blood - I'm O-, so much desired, and was actually due to donate last month, right in the middle of the horrible cold. Today was the first time since then that I've felt healthy and had the free time to go on the same day. And unfortunately, the phlebotomist hit the vein in a valve, and air got into the tube before they got the needle in right - so I couldn't donate properly (the bag was almost flat), but it still counts as a donation. So I can't give again for 8 weeks - right around Christmas. Oh well.

I'm gearing up for the election next week. I'm running a polling station; I've now contacted - well, called and left messages - all my pollworkers. Friday I pick up the equipment; Monday I and I _hope_ some of the other pollworkers will be doing pre-setup. Tuesday the 6th I have to be there (about 30 minutes' drive away) at 6 am; if all goes well, I'll leave about 9 pm, come home, and collapse. It's a very long day (we do get a couple breaks, though - but I have to keep track of things, so my breaks aren't very breaky). And this week I need to vote! I do vote by mail - for obvious reasons, I can't get to the polling station where I'm supposed to vote on Election Day. So I need to fill out my ballot, and I'll drop it in a box at my polling station on the 6th. Or drop it off before that, but usually it ends up being on Election Day.

55humouress
Okt. 30, 2018, 2:39am

I did not know that you could scan recipes into Evernote. I have (I can't honestly say 'use' yet) an app called MacGourmet which I'm typing in the ingredients list and book page into so I can use up leftover ingredients. Theoretically.

If you have any butterfly pictures, please don't forget to post them in the Butterfly thread!

56jjmcgaffey
Okt. 31, 2018, 1:29am

I use an app called Textgrabber; it does a very good job of OCRing text (if I manage to take a straight, in-focus picture), I can edit and correct what it gets wrong (it has an awful time with fractions...1/2 cup is V2 cup nearly every time), and then it has Evernote as a share and it creates an Evernote note with the (corrected) text. Immensely helpful.

I was using CamScanner before, but that a) isn't as good at OCR and b) after you've corrected the text, it copies it to Evernote as a .txt attachment. Which is a pain. So I switched to Textgrabber. I have an Android phone, BTW; I don't know if Textgrabber exists for iPhone, though it is from ABBYY - solid company that does OCR on several platforms (Windows, Android, and I believe MacOS - not certain about iOS).

I've had various recipe apps, but yeah, most of them required a heck of a lot of typing. Evernote will search the text of a note (though not a PDF, unless you're paying for Premium), and you can also tag it - I tag with things like meal, dessert, sweet, savory, side dish; and with oven, stovetop, blender, and the like. And then with the major ingredients, or the ones I'm unlikely to have, or the ones I'm likely to have left over and need to use up - I often have 10-15 tags on a note. But it makes it easy to search and find those recipes. My mom has separate notebooks for different kinds of food (main dish, side dish, dessert, drinks...) and doesn't use tags at all, though she does use search. I just have Recipes and Tested Recipes (the latter being ones I've tried and liked - the former being ones that looked good in the newspaper or a cookbook or online).

Where's the Butterfly thread? I don't really have any good pictures - there's a couple of a monarch sitting with its wings spread, but I was taking it with a phone camera from at least 15 feet away, so if I zoom in as big as I can get I can see an orange shape with vague lines on it. But I'll put them up (zoomed in). Besides, I'd like to see what others have put in there!

57jjmcgaffey
Okt. 31, 2018, 9:49pm

Books Read
222. Chuck and Danielle # by Peter Dickinson. Review - Fun...though I'd forgotten most of it from my earlier reading, not a lot of depth here. Cute book, though.
223. Some Things Transcend @^ by M.C.A Hogarth. Review - Wow again - and as an extra bonus, Jahir and Vasiht'h show up!

Currently Reading
Um...nothing much. I found The Other Woman's Son, a BOMB I picked up during my romance blitz and then lost (in my purse, would you believe?). So I guess I'll continue that. I don't think I'll finish anything else tonight, though.

BOMBs
Nope.

Discards
Nope. Chuck and Danielle is a) cute and b) really hard to find. Not getting rid of it.

New/Reread
One reread, one new, 21 rereads paid for.

A ridiculous number of books. See next post.

58jjmcgaffey
Okt. 31, 2018, 9:55pm

October stats
46 books read
9 rereads
37 new books
21 rereads paid for

11314 pages read, average 246

9 BOMBs - passed my goal for the month (and year)

25 ebooks, 23 paper books

14 discards - passed my goal for the month (and year)

13 SF&F
6 children's
2 non-fiction
7 general fiction
16 romances
2 graphic novels

31 F, 14 M authors

I beat my record (since I was tracking books) of 43 books read in a month, from March 2017 - admittedly, those were slightly longer books, 1500 pages more in the month. However, the reason I read so many books that month was that I was sick most of the month and didn't have energy to do anything else. This month I was quite active and busy - and still read a huge number of books (though many of them were relatively short). Weird.

I also read by far the most BOMBs in a month, and almost as many paper books as ebooks, which is rare these days. Almost half as many male authors as female, which is closer to balanced than I usually manage. Blew away my discards goal and hit my BOMBs goal for the year - so I'm going to beat that by probably quite a few books.

Very nice month!

59ronincats
Okt. 31, 2018, 11:15pm

That is an amazing number of books read, Jenn. Sorry you had to be feeling so lousy to accomplish it.

60quondame
Nov. 1, 2018, 1:27am

>58 jjmcgaffey: I started the year cataloging several shelves of books and planning to read lots of BOMBs. Maybe I've done two this year? I've raided my daughter's shelves much more often for short books to enter for TIOLI challenges - not only are they much shorter and brighter, but so many of my BOMBs are by now old or dead white men and I have to suspend my rampant feminism to get through them. Sorry you haven't been feeling well, it is so much better to feel up to what you want to do.

61jjmcgaffey
Nov. 1, 2018, 9:25pm

No, no, it was _last_ year I was sick all month (in March) and read 43 books. This year I've been up and busy and doing stuff in October - and reading even more books! Ridiculous.

>60 quondame: Yes - I've been struggling with BOMBs for several years now. Last year I hit my goal, but I read most of my BOMBs in the first and last two months - and that was with the requirement of reading 4 BOMBs a month (which obviously I failed at). The year before, I didn't hit _half_ my goal (literally - 22 of 50), and I don't think I read a BOMB in the last half of the year. Somehow, this year, with doing the inventory of my boxes, I hit my stride of reading BOMBs beautifully. And yes, there are a lot I haven't read because I have them...because a person _ought_ to have read them. I managed Dracula last year, and one Jane Austen this. Maybe it's just that I found a bunch that were reasonably light and readable. I have a _lot_ of romances, and old SF, that should be quick and easy reads, if I just get started - that's how I had my month+ of romances in September and October. And I have sooooo many books to read and (mostly) get rid of...once I get started, there's nothing to stop me (at least, I'm not going to run out of BOMBs for quite a while).

62quondame
Nov. 1, 2018, 9:39pm

>61 jjmcgaffey: Is there a LT glossary page where BOMB, ROOT and other such are listed? BB is defined, but that's the only one I saw.

63ronincats
Nov. 1, 2018, 10:34pm

>61 jjmcgaffey: Oops, my bad! Even more impressive.
>62 quondame: BOMBs and ROOTs are actually the same thing--Books Out of My Bookcase and Read Our Own Tomes.

>47 jjmcgaffey: I actually do a triangle with the third color as well, Jenn, just smaller than the second color, rather than a stripe, if that helps any.

64jjmcgaffey
Nov. 2, 2018, 1:48am

>62 quondame: I found one on the wiki - might be helpful. https://wiki.librarything.com/index.php/Abbreviations

>63 ronincats: I don't think it would have - there was absolutely no blending between the blue and the greens. I'm going to try it again soon (I've made some small plates, that I'll get bisqued next week and try various combinations of glazes on afterward). We'll see if I can approach what you have.

So the holidays are approaching - I'm not going to worry about piecrusts until after the election, but I discovered that I made slippersocks for my parents this year (and for me) rather than making them for the Angel Tree. Last year I very cleverly started knitting in January and I had two pairs of slippersocks ready with no effort at all. This year...I've started the first pair, hope I can get two pair done in a month! The Angel Tree is a gifting thing through my church; people who otherwise won't get much, including people in nursing homes and poor families, can make requests, and people in the church will pick ones to fulfill. There's usually several asking for a blanket and/or socks; I buy throws (also in January, when they're cheap) and knit slippersocks and give two presents of one each. Fun, not too expensive for me, and (I'm told) highly appreciated. Knit fast, Jenn!

Then piecrusts - I make several pies for (another) church Thanksgiving dinner, and also pies for us for Christmas (and sometimes Thanksgiving). Since it's just me and my parents, we go out for Thanksgiving dinner; Christmas is the big deal, though we generally don't have it on Christmas Day. It makes it easier to work with the other families (my sisters are both married) and my parents and I do Christmas Vigil (a nice Mass, with songs beforehand) at church on Christmas Eve. Which makes being around for family difficult, since neither of my sisters or their families are interested in going. So we generally have Christmas (dinner, and presents) a day or two later; doesn't make any difference to us, especially as the youngest in the families is now...23 or 24, I think. Yeesh! How time flies...

The other big thing is the caroling party - this year will be the...52nd annual party? Something like that. That's early-ish in December - second Friday, this year. And we're also going to Christmas Revels, on the first weekend of December.

And of course prepping presents - most of mine are usually food things, so I have to work on them close to time. Candy, though, so it keeps for a while - I'll be making some this month, some in December.

65quondame
Nov. 2, 2018, 2:25am

66LadyoftheLodge
Nov. 2, 2018, 10:09pm

We do the Angel Tree at church too. I really enjoy picking out things for other people and imagining them using the items. I especially like to find things for babies, since I have no children of my own.

I really enjoyed the Christmas Revels when we were able to go quite a few years ago. Also Madrigal Dinners, for which my (departed) spouse and I used to do the lighting and set up and tear down. Good memories!!

67jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Nov. 3, 2018, 2:53am

Weird - I came back to the thread and my message 64 wasn't there, and was in the edit box. I posted it, then the responses to it popped up...I deleted the extra posting, but that was weird.

68humouress
Nov. 4, 2018, 11:56am

>56 jjmcgaffey: Sorry -I thought that you had posted on the Butterfly thread before. Here's the link:

http://www.librarything.com/topic/289321

69jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Nov. 4, 2018, 9:00pm

Books Read
224. Eight Cousins # by Louisa May Alcott. Review - Sweet as always. A bit amusing, realizing how old it is - "children now refuse to listen to their elders", said Socrates.
225. Rose in Bloom # by Louisa May Alcott. Review - Less familiar and less interesting than Eight Cousins, because it's so strongly a romance (or four), but still good.
226. Very Rich @^ by Polly Horvath. Review - Bleah. She's trying to be Roald Dahl and not hitting it. I didn't find any pleasant characters - only nasty and bland.
227. Woodland Tales * by Ernest Thompson Seton. Review - An amazing mish-mash of woodland info, fairy stories, sexism, and cultural appropriation - "Indian" beliefs, etc from all over, and probably made-up ones as well.
228. The Ordinary Princess # by M.M. Kaye. Review - Pleasant story - not too deep, but far from vapid.
229. Only an Irish Boy @^ by Horatio Alger. Review - One of the better Algers; the standard storyline, but not quite as formulaic as some.
230. Enchanted Glass # by Diana Wynne Jones. Review - Still a lovely story. I wish she'd written more in this universe.
231. The Prince's Wedding # by Justine Davis. Review - A good romance, the usual solid Davis characters - neat references to her Redstone series, too. Misunderstandings and utter stupidity, though, so not a favorite.

Currently Reading
And Condors Danced by Zilpha Keatley Snyder; An Expert in Murder by Nicola Upson, and if I get around to picking it up again, The Other Woman's Son.

BOMBs
Woodland Tales is the only one.

Discards
Woodland Tales is certainly a discard. So is Very Rich, but as it's an ebook it doesn't count.

New/Reread
5 rereads, 3 new. 17 rereads paid for - nice, I'm using them up.

A real assortment of stuff, read very quickly (only four days for eight books!). Still no particular reason for reading so much, still reading so much. I'm not objecting, certainly, but it's odd.

70jjmcgaffey
Nov. 7, 2018, 10:21pm

Ooof. I'm almost nearly recovered from yesterday, and running a polling station. It's an exhausting day - I (we) have to be there for setup at 6 am, which means up at 4 am; and the polls close at 8 pm, if we do a good job we've closed down and cleaned up by 9. Not bad this time, we were out of there (including delivering the secure stuff to the return center) by 9:15. And I came home, took two aspirin and fell on my nose - woke up this morning at 9:30 am. I've been puttering about all day, no energy to do anything (except read, of course).

It was an interesting day. I've been running polling stations for some years - a decade? - and this location for three years, I think (5 or 6 elections). What we usually get is a 7 am rush, when the polls open, then tailing off from about 9 until noon; a lunch rush for an hour or so; and then pretty solid with people coming in steadily from about 5 pm until we close at 8 (and I think every year there's been at least one person showing up at 8:05 pm...out of luck). This year, it was a steady flow - more and less, we had periods with every booth filled, people sitting at tables and working on wide windowsills, and a line of five or six people waiting for space to vote; and periods with only two or three voters in the location. But unlike any other election I've worked, there were _no_ times when there was no one there but the pollworkers. This was helped by it being a long and complicated ballot - a couple dozen contests, from Governor and State Senator to school board members, plus 8-10 judges being appointed to state courts, and then a dozen referendums, at state, regional, and city level. People who came in without having written up their ballots, in some form, ahead of time were spending half an hour or more on voting. But I've seen longer ballots, and fewer people in the polling station. Nice! And yes, we got one person showing up after polls were closed. They threw their mail-in ballot into the room, but I had to throw it out - it couldn't count. They could have dropped it off any time the last two weeks...sigh.

71jjmcgaffey
Nov. 7, 2018, 11:04pm

Books Read
232. And Condors Danced * by Zilpha Keatley Snyder. Review - Eh. Not bad, not great - I kept being reminded of Laddie by Stratton-Porter.
233. The Hills Have Spies @^ by Mercedes Lackey. Review - Nice! Mags and his son Perry - and it feels quite Heraldish (as some of Mags' stories haven't). Neat adventure, excellent characters.

Currently Reading
An Expert in Murder - it's well-written, but quite depressing. Everyone has nasty secrets. The biographical bits about Tey are interesting - I like her books - but not enough to make the book draw me in. I'll finish it, but I don't think I'll be reading this series.

BOMBs
And Condors Danced.

Discards
And Condors Danced.

New/Reread
Both new - 18 rereads paid for.

I got through Condors without much difficulty, though it took a few days (and I read three other books while getting through this one), but An Expert in Murder is depressing enough that I diverted myself to The Hills Have Spies. Which took much less than a day to read and was much more cheerful, despite the horrific matters alluded to, than Expert. I may do the same again, but I'll work on Expert for a while before I pick up something more fun. I do want to _finish_ Expert and not have it hanging over me. The difference is that Condors was a paper book, and I read three ebooks while finishing it; Expert is an ebook, so I have to actually stop reading it to read a different ebook. It's the first time I've done this; usually when I stop reading an ebook, I'm planning to stop for quite a while. Which makes non-fiction difficult, because that usually takes a while. Now that I've figured out how to stop and then pick up where I left off, I may be able to read more non-fiction in ebook form.

72jjmcgaffey
Nov. 12, 2018, 10:10pm

Books Read
234. An Expert in Murder @^ by Nicola Upson. Review - Well-written, I liked the (approximate) bio bits about Tey - and I'm not reading any more of these. Too depressing.
235. Emissary @^ by Mike Shepherd. Review - Eh. It would be OK fluff if it weren't for the lack of editing. Neat bits about embassies and the diplomatic corps, though.
236. The Bravest Princess @^ by E.D. Baker. Review - OK fluff. A slightly more directed journey, and part of the book they're more involved with setting quests than taking them. Not bad, not wonderful.
237. Princess In Disguise @^ by E.D. Baker. Review - More fluff - and the whole thing leans on them (particularly the princess) not listening at the beginning. The villain is blindingly obvious…
238. Lost in Translation # by Margaret Ball. Review - Fun story, though it's quite confusing at times. Portal tale, pretty much standard, but nicely done characters and motivations.

Currently Reading
Still (trying to) reading The Other Woman's Son and Raiders From the Rings (both paper). Also started Sundiver by David Brin - I was warned it was the weakest of the series, so I will read the rest, but I'm spending a lot of time trying to figure out what's going on. Everyone has secrets and plots and lies...the protagonist not excepted.

BOMBs
Nope.

Discards
Nope. The only paper one is a reread that I continue to enjoy.

New/Reread
Four new, one reread. 17 rereads paid for.

Finally slogged through An Expert in Murder - I want to read some Tey now, and see if the style is similar. Seems to me I enjoyed Tey a lot more, though some of hers are equally convoluted and some are quite grim. I read three fluff books to relax my mind, and one a little deeper than fluff (Lost in Translation); I picked it off the shelf just to glance at it and before I knew it I was four or five chapters in. So I finished it, of course.

73LadyoftheLodge
Nov. 15, 2018, 2:24pm

I have been systematically sorting through my mystery novels--lots of BOMBs lately, taken to the YMCA exchange table. There are quite a few senior citizens (I guess that includes myself.) who frequent the YMCA, and the books on the table seem to come and go. I have seen some of mine disappear and then reappear. I also have found some really nice books there.

74jjmcgaffey
Nov. 15, 2018, 9:34pm

Nice to have a place to take them. Most of mine go to the local library sale; my condo has a community room with books, but somehow there keep being more books than shelves, rather than books going away.

75jjmcgaffey
Nov. 16, 2018, 1:58am

Books Read
239. The Other Woman's Son # by Darlene Gardner. Review - Hmm. Liked the end, but stalled in the middle...it's OK, not great.
240. Raiders From the Rings * by Alan Nourse. Review - Not bad - rich characters, in a pulpy sort of way. Not wonderful, though.
241. The Sea of Monsters * by Rick Riordan. Review - OK fluff. I think there were some plot holes, but they flew by so fast I can't remember them.

Currently Reading
Almost done with Sundiver - yeesh, what a book. I thought people in An Expert in Murder had secrets and plots... I have The Titan's Curse, but I'm not sure I want to start that right after Sea of Monsters. I'll pick something.

BOMBs
Two, Raiders and Sea of Monsters.

Discards
Both BOMBs. I'm hanging on to The Other Woman's Son for a while, at least.

New/Reread
One reread, two BOMBs (so new). 18 rereads paid for.

Once I got started again on The Other Woman's Son, I flew through it and two more. My reading speed (well, my finishing-books speed) really goes up and down...

76jjmcgaffey
Nov. 16, 2018, 2:18am

So today was Ceramics again - I threw a bowl, on the wheel. It's the first thrown piece I've done this semester...huh, I think the only other thrown piece I've done was the cup, way back at the end of the first semester (last year, about this time). Throwing is hard - not the shaping, that's easy for me. Getting the stupid lump of clay centered so I can start shaping it takes _forever_, and help. I'm using a clay called Rod's Bod - it's got little flecks of fired clay (grog) in it, which makes it much sturdier than a smooth clay. But boy it's rough on the hands - like a manicure, sanding off any calluses I might have on my hands. And because I have so much trouble getting it centered, and have to keep my hands wet to do it, a lot of the clay gets semi-liquid and sticks to my hands - which makes the working piece even rougher, since the grog doesn't leave. And cleanup takes forever. I've tried throwing with a softer clay, B-Mix - but it's no easier to center, and while it's a little easier to shape I lose just about as much of it before it's ready for shaping. What I need is practice. My teacher keeps trying to tell me how to get it centered, and I try and nothing happens, and she presses in on my hands and magically it's centered... Practice. I need to try throwing things, over and over until I can do it well. But it's such a mess to clean up, and takes so long, I wouldn't be able to do much else if I did that. I'll figure out something.

This is what I brought home last week - the plate is 8" across, and a little wobbly, but quite usable. That was molded onto a plastic plate. The pot was a coil, and a pinch lid; I put spiral grooves in it mostly so that I could determine which way the lid should be on the pot. It still doesn't really fit, but it ended up looking fantastic. I think I'm going to put a Sugru lip on the lid, so that it actually fits the pot and doesn't slide off, as it tends to do new.

77LadyoftheLodge
Nov. 16, 2018, 5:50pm

I really like the pot. The colors are very interesting.

78jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Nov. 18, 2018, 12:29am

Yeah. It was just a time-passer, but I think it's the best-looking piece I've done (as far as the decoration goes) - and everybody loves it. Unfortunately it's not very useful - too small to hold much. I'm really into functional...Oh well. I'll figure out something to do with it.

79jjmcgaffey
Nov. 18, 2018, 12:39am

So Thanksgiving is looming - as I said above, we don't do the big meal, but go out to a restaurant, since it's just me and my parents. However, I'm making three pies for a church supper, and those need to be done and delivered on the 21st. I'll make a big batch of pie crusts on Monday or Tuesday, enough for these pies, and a couple crusts for Mom, and the crusts I'll need for Christmas pies. Fortunately pie crust freezes and thaws very well.

The problem is, we're in the plume of smoke from the Camp Fire - today it was only red, unhealthy. Yesterday it was purple, very unhealthy. It's been red or purple for nearly the past week, and probably most of the next one - though there's a little rain promised Wednesday, and a bit more on Friday, which may help. It's hard to focus, or to accomplish much - the air smells smoky, and it feels like there's not enough oxygen around. And I don't want to go out to stores, I don't want to walk (which is my primary exercise)...all my windows are shut, but that doesn't really help a lot. Air is still getting in, of course, under the front door if nowhere else. No air conditioning - I deal with our (rare) heat with a window fan, not helpful here.

So in the evenings, the smoke pall rises a bit and I can think - but most of the day I huddle down (it's also suddenly chilly - highs in the 50s and low 60s) and waste time with games. Or read, I can do that. And of course I have to do chores (the cats won't feed themselves) and I don't have the brain or energy to do them during the day, so I do them in the evening...which doesn't leave time for the bigger things. I'll get the pies done, eventually, though. I do well near deadlines.

80quondame
Nov. 18, 2018, 4:08am

>79 jjmcgaffey: I'm grateful that the air here in Los Angeles has mostly cleared up - we drove through the northern edge of the burn area today, but that doesn't really give any clue to how destructive the blaze was. Good luck with the pie making!

81LadyoftheLodge
Nov. 18, 2018, 7:19pm

>79 jjmcgaffey: We live in Indiana, so we are dealing with icy roads and some intermittent snow, temps in the 20s to 40s. We have been following the fires in the news, and praying for all those affected. Wish we could magic you here to the Midwest!

82humouress
Nov. 19, 2018, 12:55am

>79 jjmcgaffey: Can empathise with suffering from the smoke; pretty much what we used to go through annually from the illegal clearing of peat bogs in Indonesia, and those fires would burn for months underground. Fortunately, we've been haze-free for a couple of years now.

83ronincats
Nov. 19, 2018, 11:29pm

Jenn, I hope things have cleared up some for you. I can empathize. During the Cedar Fire here in San Diego county in 2003, everyone basically stayed home wearing masks for a full week due to the smoke plume. All the schools and most businesses were closed for at least that long, our homes and cars were covered with ash, and our skies were opaque. Hope the rain later this week takes all the particulates out of the air up there.

84jjmcgaffey
Nov. 20, 2018, 2:35am

It seemed to clear up a bit today - we didn't have a bloody sun until sunset, though I could watch the sun set directly when it got low.

I spent the day indoors, prepping for pies - I've made the crusts now, and the pumpkin filling. The blueberry is straight from the can. When I make our own pies, I use fresh puree (starting with pie pumpkins) and blueberries from frozen blueberries - but the church ones get the canned stuff. It's still good, just not _as_ good... I also roasted pumpkins to make puree, and cooked some quince I got, finally. I got them...more than a month ago, I think, and it was a matter of cutting off all the rotted bits even though they've been in the fridge. I made membrillo, quince paste - except it never turned pink, it's brown. I'm not sure if that's because the quince was heavily brown-spotted, or because I used orange juice instead of lemon (I hate the taste of lemon, but the acid may be necessary to the pink). Whatever, it tastes pretty good. We'll see how it comes out - it's cooling now.

85jjmcgaffey
Nov. 23, 2018, 2:02am

Well. The membrillo is not a success - not an utter failure, but not a success. It's still brown, tastes basically sweet (not much other flavor), and only partly gelled - solider than most jam, but not sliceable as membrillo should be. Ah well, try again next quince season - and don't let them sit so long! I'll squish this onto bread and PB, it's adequate jam.

I didn't manage to bake pies on Tuesday, as I'd planned. I ended up baking them Wednesday afternoon, and delivering them still hot - but I did get them done and delivered in time. I have some pumpkin filling left over, and some crust trimmings - I should make a little pumpkin tart, but I haven't had the energy.

Yesterday the rains came down, and washed all the smoke out of the air. It's wonderful, even if it mean even less sun during the day... so nice to be able to breathe.

Today we went out to Thanksgiving dinner - as I said above, we go to a restaurant. Drove out near sunset, in clear weather and very little traffic; ate the usual fantastic meal (turkey and prime rib, buttermilk mashed potatoes, mashed yams, carrots with thyme, green beans with almonds, rather gloppy dressing, brie en croute, hummus, various cheeses, smoked salmon (also grilled salmon, but I didn't eat any), homemade (ok, restaurant-made) potato chips - and then the dessert table; I had pumpkin pie (not as good as mine), a creampuff, some melon, grapes, and a strawberry, a very rich brownie, and half of a little piece of chocolate cake that wasn't as good as the brownie. It's a buffet - you can take what you want, and I generally have a little bit of almost everything); and came home in pitch blackness and pouring rain. It's about 45 minutes or an hour's drive between the restaurant and home; it was quick going out and slow coming back - slightly heavier traffic, too. Home, fed the cats (and I didn't get them any turkey, bad me), read comics and LT, and now to bed.

86jjmcgaffey
Nov. 24, 2018, 12:00am

Books Read
242. Sundiver @^ by David Brin. Review - Not enjoyable - too many misunderstandings and outright lies (including from the author).
243. Velveteen Vs the Seasons @^ by Seanan McGuire. Review - Velveteen keeps getting weirder...Worth reading, though.
244. The Invisible Garden @! by Valerie Picard. Review - Cute, but not aimed at me - a picture book.
245. xkcd Volume 0 @^ by Randall Munroe. Review - I'd read most of the comics online; his commentary is neat (if tiny). I do want to try at least some of the codes, as well. Fun book.
246. Summer in Orcus ^ by T. Kingfisher. Review - Oh, lovely. A portal story, with some gorgeous twists. I do love Ursula Vernon…
247. Silver Scales @^ by L. Rowyn. Review - Wow. This is what Sorcerer to the Crown wanted to be and wasn't. Amazing story, wonderful rich characters and interactions. Next, please!
248. Lammas Night * by Katherine Kurtz. Review - A very rich, rather dark story - in the world of Kurtz's Adept, but earlier, during WWII.

Currently Reading
Two so-far-very-interesting non-fiction books, both as ebooks (on different devices) - The Book of Humans by Adam Rutherford and The Missing Ingredient by Jenny Linford. I'm just finished with the intro for both, so we'll see how they hold up. Also, in paper, a reread of The Shadow Gate - I picked it up to confirm what it was about, read several chapters, put it down...and it keeps creeping back into my head so I guess I need to read all of it.

BOMBs
Lammas Night, I guess - I thought I had read it before, but it didn't ring any bells as I read.

Discards
Nothing - I'm hanging onto Lammas Night until I've at least skimmed the ebook edition of it I have, to make sure it's the same. All but one of the rest are ebooks.

New/Reread
All 7 are new books. 19 rereads paid for.

I have a strange, rare, and very pleasant problem - a whole bunch of excellent books coming up at once (the last three, plus what I'm reading now). I was bouncing around between books, because I wanted to find out what happened next in each one. Very nice.

The rain is still pouring down; I don't need to water my balcony, which is nice, but it does make it hard to walk enough each day. The corridors of my building get very boring, I don't want to go to stores (on Black Friday? I'd have to be nuts), and I'm certainly not walking outside and getting soaked. Ah well, back to plodding the corridors.

87jjmcgaffey
Nov. 27, 2018, 2:24am

Bleah. I've been hit with _another_ cold - it's oddly all in my nose, instead of rapidly moving down to my chest as usual. And despite a steadily dripping nose, I got quite a lot done today - made yogurt, and bread balls for bubalki (special New Years Day treat, poppyseed sauce over boiled bread balls. They have to be quite stale before they get boiled, so I make them early). Also made pesto, which turned into a process - I had some greens blanched and frozen, but it turned out not to be quite enough, so I went out on my balcony well after dark and harvested a load of New Zealand spinach. And when I'd harvested it, I sort of kept going and pulled all of it out of the two big pots it was in - still have some growing in a smaller pot (13" round). I have to empty all my pots to clean them out of bad soil - this is the first actual progress I've made towards doing that. Found a couple parsley plants buried in the NZ spinach, and left those - I'll shift them around as I get pots done. Also took out garbage (after I filled the bin with NZ spinach stalks, after picking the leaves off, blanching them and adding them to the pesto). Lots of lovely pesto - it freezes well, so I have 5 jars in the freezer and one in the fridge for eating. But I spent the vast majority of today on my feet, and oh my legs are telling me about it...I took an aspirin and will be going to bed shortly.

Not a lot of reading today - read a bit of The Missing Ingredient, which is an interesting angle on food - it's splitting things up in terms of time. Seconds count when making caramel, and eating chocolate - minutes count when cooking fish (by any method) and making tea (she's properly dismissive of tea bags, and gives some interesting info on loose-leaf tea). I haven't gotten to hours, days, or months yet - not sure at the moment whether there's a years section or not. No recipes as such, it's discussions about food, but there are some useful bits of technique (in making caramel, for instance - dry vs wet caramel and how to tell when to pull it off the heat). But mostly I was cooking or cleaning up after cooking.

88quondame
Nov. 27, 2018, 2:06pm

>87 jjmcgaffey: I have a bit of secondhand knowledge of candy making as that was one of my mother's passions during my teenage years - but she had to deal not only with time but with altitude in the high desert which altered all the time/temperature settings for soft ball, hard crack and such. We had a freezer full of amazing treats, including fondant centered chocolates entirely home made once she finished with the experimental stage.

89jjmcgaffey
Nov. 27, 2018, 6:44pm

>88 quondame: Oh, yum! I've made some candy - my results range from excellent to...well, not total failures, they still tasted good. But caramels that slump in minutes at room temperature are hard to eat without making a huge mess, for instance.

So this morning I suddenly figured out that I do _not_ have a cold, I have allergies. Which is why it's staying in my nose. Wish I knew what I was being allergic to - I never used to be allergic to anything but cats, but recently I'm hitting a lot of environmental allergies and I hate it. I took a Zyrtec, which should take effect tonight or tomorrow, but right now I am so stuffed up... I keep popping my ears to keep them from squeezing to the point of pain. And blowing my nose, time after time. Bah. I'm also drowsy, and I don't know if it's from the pill or from the allergies. Bah. But it should be better tomorrow.

Went to ceramics workshop today, but I didn't have much to work on - my plaque is waiting to be bisqued, as are a couple plates, and another plate and a little marigold plaque are waiting to be glaze fired. I had a piece that's supposed to be the second half of a mold, but (of course) it shrunk in drying and no longer fits the first piece. I rasped off its edges and now it kinda-sorta fits into the other - I put it to be bisqued and we'll see.

Raining, harder than the forecast said; very gray day. It's a good day for sleeping, anyway.

90humouress
Nov. 27, 2018, 11:33pm

>88 quondame: I think I’ve given up doing anything like candy or chocolate shapes in the high humidity of Singapore. At one point, my mum, my sister and myself were into make
Ing paste flowers in the UK but they don’t seem to work here, either. Or I’ve lost the knack.

>89 jjmcgaffey: Maybe the allergies are something to do with the smoke? That’s been a major change in your environment recently.

91jjmcgaffey
Nov. 28, 2018, 1:34am

Yeah, but the allergies hit the night the rains came and washed out the smoke...and they haven't let up since. Bleah. I suspect some sort of pollen released as the rains arrived, which means I can't really avoid it. I'll keep the Zyrtec handy this time next year, too...

92jjmcgaffey
Dez. 1, 2018, 3:58am

I tried throwing again on Thursday and discovered one thing I already knew and two that may help in the future. The one I knew is that the clay my teacher prefers to throw with is too soft for me - everything twisted before I could finish it. The two that may help are a) I'm pressing too hard (which is why I have to keep wetting my hands and I make so much slip) and b)...I'm a left-handed thrower! If I try to center with my right hand, my hand and arm wobble and the clay keeps going off-center. But if I center with my left hand, I can hold it still and make the clay behave (for a while, at least!). I'm basically right-handed - I can do a few things ambidextrously, but not a lot. But I tried three times and I got the clay centered with my left hand each time.

And two of the things I tried fell apart on me, but I did (maybe) make another pie bird. We'll see how it comes out when I trim it. It twisted a little, but only inside, so that shouldn't matter - as long as it doesn't warp in drying. It looks ridiculously huge, but it's very hard to judge size - between not having normal-size stuff around to compare to, and the fact that clay does noticeably shrink, it may end up just the right size.

93jjmcgaffey
Dez. 1, 2018, 4:19am

And Thursday evening I cleared out two of my Earthboxes, the ones I pulled the NZ spinach out of. I had to empty one, in order to get the grid so I can make a design and get it cut when I go to my sister's tomorrow. And then I'd done one, so I did the other as well.

I think I've said this before, but now it's actually happening. I have five Earthboxes, three of which I bought direct, one of which I found at a yard sale, and one of which I picked up on the side of the road. That last had only the box and the plate that the soil sits on - not the watering tube and not the grid (you know, slots up and down so the flat pieces fit together to make squares?) that supports the plate. I've used it for two years now, using various pots and props, and it's been a miserable failure every time - well, stuff still grows in it, but the dirt oozes out the overflow hole which means the reservoir is smaller than it ought to be.

So I figured I'd make my own grid - it's not all that complicated. But it's been amazingly difficult to find something that would work. I asked at Tap Plastics; they recommended a particular type of plastic, which would work perfectly but costs almost as much as a new Earthbox, just for the plastic not for the cutting. So that's a no. My sister has a laser cutter - a Glowforge, she got it off Kickstarter (almost two years after the campaign funded - but it did eventually come). She's had it for a year, and has made quite a few things, but I didn't have any project. Then I saw some of the (many many) campaign signs around, and realized they're made with corrugated plastic - same shapes as corrugated cardboard, but plastic and thus waterproof. And corrugated cardboard is extremely tough, for its weight and so on - so the corrugated plastic should be able to stand up to the weight of plate and soil (I hope!).

I got some abandoned signs (actually my sister picked them up for me - the signs around here were flat cardboard instead), and went to look at the design I'd done earlier...and discovered it was non-functional. Wrong sizes and shapes and in a complicated program that wouldn't pass data to the Glowforge...so I got a grid out from under the dirt, and spent tonight making what I think will work very well as a design. I really want to print it and check it against the original grid, but I have to remember where the heck I put the big paper - I have a large-format printer (which I use basically as a large-format scanner, but occasionally printing is good) and I believe I have some big paper (11.5x17, tabloid sized) that will be big enough to print the pattern full-sized and compare. But I have to figure out where...before I head out to my sister's, tomorrow morning. I may not get to do the printing. That's OK, Dee said she got several signs - I should have enough to laser-cut a sample piece and then do the complete set.

Mom and I also bought a bunch of tomato seeds last week; maybe this year I'll actually get the seedlings started early, and have a place to plant them when they're ready to go out. I didn't clean out my pots last year, and I had a horrible harvest - I think I got maybe 10 pounds of tomatoes off 8 plants. Two died without producing a single tomato, one more died after producing a green one that never came ripe, and three produced between 1 and 3 tomatoes total. Two plants produced prolifically, and they were both good, but...that's not much in the way of tomatoes! So this year (next year) I'm going to concentrate on it, and actually get stuff done on time. Clean out the pots now and give them fresh soil and compost. Plant the seeds early, pot up the seedlings as soon as they're well started, transplant them early and get things going. And if Nature cooperates, that should give me a _good_ harvest next year.

94jjmcgaffey
Dez. 2, 2018, 2:39am

Books Read
249. The Shadow Gate # by Margaret Ball. Review - Not as good as I remembered - the end makes the beginning a lie.

Currently Reading
Still reading The Book of Humans and The Missing Ingredient - both living up to their promise, but they're not quick reads. I've been so busy doing stuff I haven't picked up another light book since I finished The Shadow Gate on the 27th. I'll probably start one - oh, I forgot. I opened two books, and read a chapter of one, so I guess I'm reading them too - The Ne'er-Do-Well by Rex Beach and Roughing It by Mark Twain. The latter my parents read last summer, while we were staying in one of the areas he's talking about (near Carson City, NV), and they loved it; it's been on my Read Soon piile ever since, and _now_ it chooses to come to the top. Silly thing. The other is an old book - published 1911 - that I picked up at the library book sale. It should be interesting, if only for the way things differ nowadays.

BOMBs
Nope, not in this lot.

Discards
I think I will discard it. I very much like Margaret Ball, but this is not a winner. I may pick it up in ebook sometime, though, just in case I want to read it again.

New/Reread
One reread, so 18 paid for.

95jjmcgaffey
Dez. 2, 2018, 2:44am

November stats
26 books read
8 rereads
18 new books
18 rereads paid for

7325 pages read, average 281.7

5 BOMBs - passed my goal for the month
0 ER books
1 Netgalley books

14 ebooks, 12 paper books

5 discards - passed my goal for the month

11 SF&F
0 animal stories (zero for the year so far! I need to read some of these - not like I don't have them, even as BOMBs)
11 children's
2 romances
1 graphic novels
1 mysteries

19 F, 7 M authors

Nothing particularly unusual here - nice balance of paper and e-, the usual imbalance of author gender, more SF&F than anything else - huh, no, it's matched by children's stories this month. That's because that's where I got to in my boxes of BOMBs. But unusual. And while I passed both my goals, for BOMBs and discards, this month, they're both over and above my yearly goal - I'm currently at 55 BOMBs and 62 discards. Whee!

96jjmcgaffey
Dez. 2, 2018, 2:51am

The laser day worked out _perfectly_. My client canceled, so I just went straight to my sister's; I'd worked out a design on Friday night (and stayed up too late doing it...oh well), which needed some tweaking but not much. She helped me tweak it, we uploaded it to her laser cutter and cut one set, figured out some problems and did another, fixed one more set of problems and then cut out a whole bunch. I've got enough pieces for two grids, plus a few. I'm only going to use one set, but that means I have spares when these collapse or get too slimy to keep using. Hooray! It took us just about 4 hours from my arrival until we declared ourselves done. Then we hung around and talked for a few more hours, with her roommate and some other guests as well, and I got some knitting done, then headed home. I puttered around on the way home - did some shopping, got gas, stuff like that; got home, scanned my purchases (I'm a Neilsen scanner for purchases - I track everything (that has a UPC, and a few things that don't) that I buy, and where and at what prices. I keep telling them that the best gift/prize/reward they could give their scanners is access to our own data...it would be so helpful!), and am now finishing the sock while reading (and posting on) LT. It's not midnight yet...but I won't finish it before midnight. Close, though. Then wrap both sets of blanket-and-socks, and bring them to church tomorrow, and done!

97humouress
Dez. 2, 2018, 2:57am

>93 jjmcgaffey: Now, you see, I would just have planned to cut it out of plastic or something in the first place and then sat around for a few years thinking about it ;0) A laser cutter where you have to program things in is too complex for me. The kids tell me I'm a techie dinosaur; the fact of the matter is that I'm the only one at home who's inclined to read instructions but these days I feel less inclined (because even to download an app sometimes requires you to read 36 pages of closely typed print on a screen) and it's just easier to bumble along in the old fashioned way.

>95 jjmcgaffey: Good for you, passing goals.

98quondame
Dez. 2, 2018, 3:16am

>94 jjmcgaffey: Shadow Gate is an entirely different book, isn't it? I was just a bit confused.

99jjmcgaffey
Dez. 2, 2018, 10:07pm

>97 humouress: As I said, I got the pot at least two summers ago...I've planned how to do it over and over and not gotten anything that actually worked. The nice thing about this laser cutter is that the way you "program" it is upload a drawing of what you want it to cut or engrave. And then there's some settings, but I drew the image (very carefully sized, because it has to exactly fit _into_ the pot) in Inkscape, which is a free and not very complicated drawing program. I could have drawn it in Irfanview, which is even simpler, but getting the sizes right would have been harder.

I could, I suppose, have drawn it more-or-less freehand on the corriboard (corrugated plastic), and cut it out with a craft knife. But just cutting the last little bit after the laser had done most of the work left my guiding finger sore - if I'd started back when I got the pot (not that I knew about corriboard at that point) I might have had a set done by now...if I'd somehow managed to both draw and cut it the right shape and size. I suspect I would have given up in disgust long ago. But as it is, once we tweaked the design a trifle, I can have as many as I want - it took us about two hours to tweak it to get the first correct version, and then two hours to cut two and a half sets. If (when) these die, I can cut a new set in about half an hour. The great thing about doing it by machine is reproducibility.

>98 quondame:...different than what? Oh, I see. Yeah, quite different. It's a reasonably popular title - three different books and two series listed on LT, plus a pair of books called Shadow at the Gate/The Shadow at the Gate (again, different books by different authors). I've never read the Kate Elliot - she's one of the authors I know _of_ but I'm not sure I've ever actually read anything by her.

Heh - the only book I have by her is called The Labyrinth Gate (written under a pseudonym). Unrelated to Shadow Gate, as far as I can see - and never read (yet).

Brrr, it's cold. For here, I know, spoiled. But 50 degrees just after sunset (and a high of 55F today) is too bloody cold for me. I have neither the clothes nor the mindset for real winter any more. And my downstairs neighbor seems to have gone away for the day (maybe for several days) - they like it hot, and enough leaks up here to make me comfortable most of the time. But I had to turn on my _own_ heat tonight!

I delivered the presents this morning, all's well. So now I'm starting a new pair - I'm going to have two sets done well before next Christmas, again! It worked so well last year, and then I got lazy. Or rather got busy making socks for various people, including me - but I could have had a pair or two done without much difficulty if I'd thought of the need.

I hate winter. It's 7 pm and pitch dark outside (and cold(er than during the day)). California took the first step, this last election, towards going on permanent Daylight Savings - I'll take it, thank you! So far all that's passed is that the legislature _can_ make changes to California's time zone, as long as it doesn't conflict with federal rules, but the campaigning for the resolution was all about permanent DST. So now California's legislature can make those changes - haven't yet, but can. Here's hoping. It would take until 8 pm to be pitch dark then...baby steps.

100humouress
Dez. 2, 2018, 10:25pm

>99 jjmcgaffey: I love it when it comes together like that.

But this weekend I spent ages trying to work out how to get photos off my iCloud and saved on my computer instead. Simple, you would think, right? I finally managed to save it to a different folder but it took many tries to get each ‘drag and drop’ to work for some reason and when I finally had everything transferred I realised that all the data (time & location) hadn’t transferred - and the photos go back six years. Fortunately (or not) they all still seem to be in the iCloud so I can type some detail in manually (which will take forever) but that means my night’s work was for nothing.

So I’m not a fan of technology right now. :0)

101ronincats
Bearbeitet: Dez. 2, 2018, 11:30pm

Actually, Kate Elliott is the pseudonym of Alis Rasmussen. I have The Labyrinth Gate and her Highroad Trilogy, both of which I really liked. I read Jaran, her first as Kate Elliott, and wasn't pulled in. I just tried Cold Magic recently and it was okay.

I have all of Margaret Ball's that I was able to acquire back in the day (mostly early 90s): her Tamai duology, The Shadow Gate, No Earthly Sunne, Mathemagics and Disappearing Act. Mostly haven't read her collaboration stuff--couldn't take the Acorna series and bailed on the Brainship series several books in, read a couple of the Chicks in Chainmail compilations. It's been so long since I read any of them (although I have kept all her solely authored books) that I don't recall what your beef is with The Shadow Gate.

You are further west than we are--it is dark by 5:00 in the afternoon here. I can live with it for the few months of Standard time because it means we don't wake up in the dark. But I was glad when they extended daylight savings by a month or two.

And congrats on the grids for your Earthboxes!

Waiting to see your finished pottery.

102quondame
Dez. 3, 2018, 12:57am

>99 jjmcgaffey: >101 ronincats: I rather like Kate Elliott's Jaran series and really like the series that starts with Cold Magic - I'd judge that the most accessible of her works. She does things with fantasy at sort of an oblique angle to the tropes she uses. I'm is a permanent state of torqued off because her Crown of Stars series doesn't get 100th the mention of mostly retread sagas by male authors.

103jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Dez. 4, 2018, 2:16am

>101 ronincats: I've never been able to stand Acorna - I think I quit about a quarter of the way through the first book and never went back. The Brainship series is highly uneven - well, it's different authors for each book. But PartnerShip (Ball's book) was not bad - not wonderful, but not bad. The Ship Who Searched, with Lackey, is fantastic and I love it and it takes a lot of the themes and ideas that the Helga books left hanging and tidies them up wonderfully. Then there was the "science is magic is science" one, and the "big bloody battles" one...and guess which two of the four got sequels? Arrgh. I have _not_ read the sequels, though I did read both The Ship Who Won and The City Who Fought - I hadn't decided that I couldn't stand Stirling at that point, and I usually quite like Nye.

The other Ball book I have and have read and reread is Lost in Translation - it's a nicely done portal story. Also her Changeweaver and Flameweaver - ah, those are the Tamai books. Since I grew up in Afghanistan, those had special resonance for me. I've read No Earthly Sunne at least twice and currently can remember a bare sketch of the plot and can't remember what I thought of it - and I never reviewed it, sigh. I could never get into Mathemagics or the Chicks in Chainmail books - the heroine's voice rubs me raw (and no, I don't mean I listened to the audiobooks. She's almost as annoying as noir detectives). And I read Disappearing Act, I think - no, apparently not. OK, I started Disappearing Act, and liked what I'd read, but apparently I never actually managed to finish it. I should read that! As a diplomat's daughter, again, that one has resonances.

I should also read Elliot/Rasmussen. I've had The Labyrinth Gate for years...well, see: 20 boxes of mostly unread SF. I have so many BOMBs...Keep pecking away at them, Jenn, they'll shrink eventually.

>102 quondame: I'll see if I can find Cold Magic, though I'll probably start with The Labyrinth Gate, since I _have_ it.

It does get dark at 5 pm - well, the sun has set, but the sky isn't completely pitch black at that point. I just happened to be writing at 7 pm and noticing that it was completely dark and had been for a while. I'd rather wake up in the dark - but then, I am so not a morning person I mostly _don't_ wake up until full light, even in midwinter. Which means I don't get much morning, of course...

>100 humouress: I truly hate iCloud. It must have some logic to it, but I've never been able to figure it out - at best, I can negotiate a partial victory (rather like yours) for my clients. I don't use it myself, but a lot of my clients are on iPhones and/or Macs. But Apple is never satisfied with "here's a storage space for putting what you want" - there are magic incantations, and completely obscure distinctions (Photo Stream vs iCloud Photos vs...there's a third version, too), and if you use the wrong incantation either you'll have three copies of everything or iCloud will say "Oh, did you want to keep that? Sorry, when you moved it out of my folders I deleted it permanently...". Grrr. Reasons why I'm on Windows and Android despite all their annoyances - I can handle those better than I can the Apple annoyances.

104humouress
Dez. 5, 2018, 1:59am

>103 jjmcgaffey: There are three versions?! I've only just run up against Photostream and am trying to work out the difference. Ah, well. On to happier things.

Afghanistan? I'm sure a fantasy fan like you has read The Blue Sword already. Not that I've ever been to Afghanistan, but that's the kind of place I imagine the Damar of Harry's day would look like.

105jjmcgaffey
Dez. 6, 2018, 2:54am

>104 humouress: Oh yes, very much. I didn't read it (I don't think it was out) while I was there - which is probably a good thing, wandering off into the mountains in the hopes of matching Harry's adventures would have been a bad idea. I'm also a Kipling fan, for much the same reason.

106jjmcgaffey
Dez. 10, 2018, 5:21pm

So I am now a Google Fi subscriber, and my telephone bill will go from $92 (which did include $25 for paying off my phone) to about $35 a month. Yippee and whew! I took advantage of Fi's new ability to work with other phones to sign up with my old phone, which needed to be paid off, about $50, and then unlocked. No cost except several hours of my time on various service calls to make that happen. And then I put in my Fi SIM, unlocked, and started number transfer - which took _another_ couple hours talking to various AT&T people to shake loose the mysterious "real" account number for my wireless phone (it's not on the bill, or online, or anywhere else but talking to customer service, as far as I can find). I'm connected now - and slightly pissed off, because I had 4-5 bars of service in my home on the first day, and now on the third day I have at most one (which means, not connected) and usually the slashed circle that means not even that.

I think it likely that T-Mobile, the default network for "Fi-compatible" (as opposed to "designed for Fi) phones, is currently way overloaded with people jumping onto Fi. Google did something silly - simultaneously said that Fi would work on other phones, and did a one-day special deal if you signed up with your own phone (and a separate one-day deal if you ordered a phone). They've been swamped with customer service calls (etc) ever since...and now that chips are arriving, I suspect the networks they have agreements with are also being swamped.

So I'm struggling, and trying to figure out if it's worth buying a Fi-designed phone (mine is not in good shape, and there's some very nice ones, but it's a chunk of money...) and my parents decide they're giving me one for Christmas. I've just ordered it today; it should show up in the next week or so, which will solve those problems. I'm going to have to consider carefully when I'm switching, because of various promotions that require me to use this phone for X amount of time before I qualify - but if signal remains this bad, it's not worth waiting for. I've already gotten $90 worth of Fi credit for signing up, and another $20 referral credit in 30 days (whichever phone I'm using) - so I won't even be paying that $35 bill for three months or more. Very very nice...

107humouress
Dez. 13, 2018, 1:22pm

Savings are always nice, but it sounds like it was a lot of hassle.

108jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Dez. 15, 2018, 10:16pm

It is and it isn't. Honestly, the chance to _not_ be paying AT&T is a big bonus. I'm looking for a replacement internet provider, too.

My new phone comes Monday!

Yesterday was our caroling party. Today I woke up at 11 am, and was washed and dressed not long after 3...and then stalled out completely and now at 7 pm have played a lot of games and finally ate (leftovers) about 15 minutes ago. Not really a day...Don't care. The party was lots of fun - many people and excellent food and great singing and playing (we had a friend who brought her cello and joined our usual pianist playing. Fun!). And my sister came over early and helped us set up, and everything worked, and...it was great. But I got to bed after midnight and as I said slept until 11 am. Wiped.

109humouress
Dez. 20, 2018, 1:36pm

I can empathise; one weekend was one son's birthday party, following weekend was the other son's party, the weekend after that I had put myself down to organise the Carols for the school on behalf of the Parents' Association and then was the last week of the school year. So now I'm relaxing and catching up on LT, maintenance on my own threads and real life slowly.

110jjmcgaffey
Bearbeitet: Dez. 20, 2018, 3:45pm

Really? You must be one of those organized people... I'm now in the runup to Christmas - made pie crust yesterday, today I'm making the fillings and tomorrow I bake them all. Plus gingerbread and cookies and etc. I did have a bit of downtime, but not a lot (largely because I still need to make some presents - some of the etc is toffee).

And - fun, fun, fun - my kitchen sink is not running hot water any more. It's always been slow on hot water, I tried adjusting the stop valve under the sink - closed and reopened...and now there's a bare trickle, which means it never gets hot (it takes a long time to run through what's in the pipes. Though I suppose I could run it in the bathroom and get hot water close...depending on whether they share a pipe). At least the bathroom is OK. But it's really cramping my style - hard to clean anything greasy in cold water. My kettle is getting a workout.

And blast it, my phone did _not_ come Monday, though FedEx says it was delivered. By an "authorized agent", a "third party deliverer". So either this person walked off with the packages they picked up Monday morning, they sneaked in Monday evening (because the office didn't see them) and dropped packages by our mailboxes (from which they were stolen), or they just never got around to actually delivering (that means they _might_ deliver at some point...but I think it unlikely). There were people in the office, and if the packages (mine, and at least one other person's) had been properly delivered to the package room it would have worked. But FedEx outsourced their deliveries and it didn't work. Grrr! I've reported to both FedEx and Google, but of course both are currently swamped (though FedEx just says they can't do a package trace because they're so swamped with requests for same - red flag, anyone?. Google hasn't answered my email yet, and I was 172 in the chat queue when I tried to report it. Not waiting that long).

111quondame
Dez. 20, 2018, 3:27pm

>110 jjmcgaffey: Holidays seem to bring out the worst in plumbing!

112jjmcgaffey
Dez. 20, 2018, 3:47pm

My parents have had their sink back up three of the last five Christmases/Thanksgivings. Yeah. Though the timing on this one is mostly on me, if I'd left it alone it would have been OK until after Christmas. But I thought maybe I could make it better...sigh.

113jjmcgaffey
Dez. 23, 2018, 12:58am

Books Read
250. The Book of Humans @! by Adam Rutherford. Review - Interesting angle on a well-chewed subject - nice current review of archeological finds, too.

Currently Reading
Still The Missing Ingredient, Roughing It, and The Ne'er-Do-Well. Also something else - I started it when I finished The Book of Humans, on my tablet. But I can't remember what it is and I don't have my tablet with me. I've been ridiculously busy, and playing games when I wasn't doing stuff instead of reading books. Finished one book so far this month, and I'm not at all sure I'll finish another in the next week+.

BOMBs
Nope.

Discards
Nope. It's an ebook anyway.

New/Reread
New, from Netgalley. 18 rereads paid for...somehow I don't think I'll use them up.

Speaking of Netgalley - my sister accused me of pointing them out. She just got auto-approved from a publisher, so now she can pick up any of their books that appeal. Both my sisters are a lot more focused on the deadlines there than I am... I've got a 62% received to reviewed. I've got a 76% ratio (I calculate) with Early Reviewers... not a champion for either one. Not terrible either, though.

114jjmcgaffey
Dez. 23, 2018, 1:04am

I'm told that my replacement phone will be arriving December 26th - still by FedEx, though I hope they do it better this time. I finally got through to Google - 10 am on a workday has a much shorter queue than in the evening, and they were really whipping through the queue (I was 33 when I started, and was talking to someone within 10 minutes. And he immediately offered to send me a replacement phone, when I complained about my non-received one. He also gave me a very useful hint, a way to see my voicemails - I got it so they'll send me the transcription via text, which works even when I don't have phone service.

115jjmcgaffey
Dez. 23, 2018, 1:19am

And I've started my Christmas - today was our Christmas Eve (because of vacations and travel and stuff). I made sourdough waffles, in vast amounts - a triple recipe of King Arthur Flour's Overnight Sourdough Waffles. I made the starter last night, then poured it into a gallon jar and brought it to my parents. Added the eggs and oil, and poured it in three separate loads out into a bowl (and added the soda and salt), from which I could ladle it onto the waffle irons (mine and my parents'). I made the first batch, various people helped with the rest. And my brother-in-law cooked bacon he'd cured himself - very tasty, but very thick and chewy.

Doing each batch separately helps keep the waffles light - if I put in a triple load of soda and salt into the whole batch, the first waffles are trying to escape upward and the last ones are kind of sodden. Also the first ones taste of soda, unpleasantly metallic. Splitting them works a lot better. I've worked this out from bringing double batches along on our timeshare visits.

Good meal, lots of talking, some word games, a short walk...and I'm falling asleep. I'm staying over at my parents, with one sister and her husband. Tomorrow is our Christmas - dinner, presents, dessert. It will be wonderful, as usual.

116LadyoftheLodge
Dez. 23, 2018, 7:38pm

Your description sounds like something from a Christmas novel, very enchanting.

117humouress
Dez. 25, 2018, 12:48pm



Seasons Greetings from Singapore! Wishing you and your family joy, peace, good fortune and good health now and in the coming year.

118jjmcgaffey
Dez. 26, 2018, 1:48am

Thanks, humoress!

>116 LadyoftheLodge: It is and it isn't - but it is fun. I've never encountered a book that came near to depicting the chaos of our conversations - two or three going on at one time, someone suddenly harking back, without explanation, to something that was discussed hours or days earlier, wild veers of subject. We enjoy it, my brothers-in-law tolerate it, and various guests (and said brothers-in-law earlier in their relationships) have been stunned into silence and gaping by a McGaffey get-together. No guests this year, and the brothers-in-law have gotten adjusted to a point.

Wow. I can't even type straight. I was up early on Christmas Eve because my sister and brother-in-law had to leave early (getting over the mountains before the snow hit); I packed up my stuff and came home, then joined the parents at Christmas Vigil. It's an hour of carol-singing followed by Midnight Mass. Got home at 1:30 am, in bed by 2, didn't wake until 11:30 am. Did almost nothing today, went over to the parents to eat fondue (they have very nice fondue kits in Trader Joe's, this year) and pick up my last few things. Came home, read LT (finished the scavenger hunt, for instance) for a couple hours, now it's 1040 pm and my eyes keep closing. Not even 12 hours awake. OK, I go bed nowzzzzzzz.

Oh, my phone came, early! It arrived on the 24th (safely in the package room, yay). I've been setting it up since then - restoring my Google backup got a lot of stuff, but there's lots of little settings and tweaks that didn't, or didn't successfully, back up. And logging in to all my apps, and recreating connections (like to my Fitbit)...lots of little things that need straightening out. It's lovely, and I'm terrified - my old phone was an Active variety, which means it basically had a built-in case on it. Heavy, somewhat clunky, but well-protected - and it needed it, I dropped it quite a few times. The new phone is slim and elegant and glass-backed and _slippery_ and I didn't think of a case until today - well, I thought of it, but today I actually got around to getting it. And it won't be here until early January and I'm scared I'm going to drop this phone. I do have insurance on it, with a promise of a new one if I break this...but then I'd have to do all the setting up all over again! Being very careful. It's also a USB-C phone, which means I need to have those cords everywhere I normally charge. I did think of that, and got some - but I didn't have any with me today when my phone went down very very low. Got home without it going off (which wouldn't be a disaster, but...).

119jjmcgaffey
Dez. 28, 2018, 3:47am

Books Read
251. That Does Not Compute! @^ by Jim Whiting. Review - OK fluff, fun to read once.

Currently Reading
All the same stuff - which is to say, basically not reading. I may pull out a few rereads in the next couple days...or nothing at all.

BOMBs
Nope.

Discards
Nope. Ebook.

New/Reread
New to me, so still 18 rereads paid for.

Not doing the final stats yet - still three days. It's possible I'll read some in that time - also possible I won't even get a few pages further along in The Missing Ingredient. We'll see. I have an itch to reread the Sharing Knife series by Elizabeth Moon...I will do that, but it may not be until next year.

I got a case for my phone at Target, and am feeling much more relaxed. It's now somewhat bulkier, and much less slippery.

So apparently I have not written here that I've started playing guitar again - there was a challenge on Habitica to play every day. In order to do that, I picked up an app - actually, I've had it on my phone for some time, but never actually used it. It's Justin Guitar; it consists of videos (I don't like videos, but these are very short, and are actually presenting useful stuff), exercises to practice what the videos tell you (very useful - I'm self-taught, and this is covering the stuff I never did), and songs to play. Those are utterly _not_ useful, unfortunately. It's mostly rock and pop, and it's presented in a Guitar Hero style (I think, I never actually played the game) - colored dots representing the chords, and you're supposed to hit them at the right time. That's not terrible - the problem is, of the first 20+ songs in the app, I (barely) knew five - and while I could sing along with the chorus on those five, I cannot actually sing them. The only one I like enough to try to learn is The Gambler by Kenny Rogers - and it's being a real struggle. I have four versions of it on my phone now, and I need to keep playing them and singing along until I get a handle on the tune. It's extremely hard to hit the chords and the timing when I'm also struggling with the tune.

Anyway. So I watch the videos, go through the exercises, play a couple of his songs, then go play real songs (folk and singer/songwriter songs) from my various songbooks. And Christmas songs, of course - he has a few in the app, and those I can actually sing along to - but some of them use chords that are supposed to be beyond me (he's only taught A, D, and E, and today I went through the videos for Am and Em). I know more chords than those...but I have a better grasp on the first three after going through his exercises, so it's still useful pretending I'm an absolute basic beginner.

And what he's teaching, and his methods, are working well enough that today I paid for a year of full access to the app. If I keep up playing...well, not really every day, but several times a week (rather than playing for a week and then not playing for six months...), I should have a much better grasp on guitar playing by the end of the year. Maybe even bar(re?) chords! Those are my bugaboos - cannot manage them. We'll see what Justin says about it.

120ronincats
Dez. 28, 2018, 1:32pm

Sharing Knife series is by Lois McMaster Bujold, as you well know, and she is working on a new novella in that world, so it would be apt.

121jjmcgaffey
Dez. 28, 2018, 6:05pm

Darn, you got here before I could come back and edit it...Yeah, I was drawing a blank on the author and came up with Moon, then corrected myself hours later while more-or-less asleep.

I'd forgotten about the novella - heard about it earlier but didn't remember. Yay! I do like the way ebooks let authors produce the short works relatively easily. This, and Penric, and Moon's Paksenarrion shorts, and etc - oh, and the Velveteen stories by Seanan McGuire, though they didn't get released separately for pay, only as complete books. Lovely.

122jjmcgaffey
Dez. 28, 2018, 8:05pm

Still not doing the stats - I have started Beguilement, we'll see how I get along. However, my 2019 thread now exists - I won't be posting there until Tuesday, but the structure is set up.

https://www.librarything.com/topic/301139

123jjmcgaffey
Jan. 2, 2019, 2:03am

Books Read
252. Beguilement @# by Lois McMasters Bujold. Review - Lovely as always - had me giggling helplessly in several sections. Next!
253. Legacy @# by Lois McMasters Bujold. Review - And again. This one is...not quite darker, but more...complex? Or something. More emotional, with some very uncomfortable emotions around.
254. Passage @# by Lois McMasters Bujold. Review - Apparently I was guffawing at this one - I didn't even notice myself doing it. They're so rich - so many levels. Love this series.
255. Horizon @# by Lois McMasters Bujold. Review - And a lovely ending - some convenient bits, but it works. I'd love to see more in this world.

Currently Reading
Same lot - The Missing Ingredient, Leather Crafting Starter Book, and (theoretically) The Ne'er-Do-Well and Roughing It. I haven't actually picked those up in weeks. But having whipped through these rereads, I think I'm back on track for reading.

BOMBs
Nope.

Discards
Heck no!

New/Reread
Multiple rereads - fourth or fifth time, for most of these. It's a very rich story that rewards rereading, like most Bujolds. And it really is one story in four books - it's hard to remember exactly where the joins are, it just keeps flowing. And I'm left ending the year with 14 rereads paid for and not used - excellent!

(dusts off hands) And there we go, a nice quick dash through a favorite story (in four books). I finished Horizon at 9:30 pm on the 31st, half an hour after I was supposed to be at a party...but that's all right, I got there at 10 and that was in plenty of time.

124jjmcgaffey
Jan. 2, 2019, 2:06am

December stats
6 books read
4 rereads
2 new books
14 rereads paid for

2193 pages read, average 365.5

0 BOMBs
0 ER books
1 Netgalley books

6 ebooks, 0 paper books

0 discards

4 SF&F
1 non-fiction
1 graphic novels

4 F, 2 M authors

Very e-, the usual imbalance towards female authors (though that's actually one female author, four times...). Very few books read...well, December is a busy month.

125jjmcgaffey
Jan. 2, 2019, 2:11am

Full year stats
255 books read
41 rereads
214 new books
14 rereads paid for so far

66392 pages read, average per book 260.4, average per month 5532.7

55 BOMBs this year, 5 above my goal
17 ER books
4 Netgalley etc books

161 ebooks, 96 paper books

63 discards for the year, 13 above my goal

114 SF&F 45%
0 animal stories 0%
37 children's 15%
13 non-fiction 5%
13 general fiction 5%
54 romances 21%
21 graphic novels 8%
3 mysteries 1%

178 F, 76 M authors

Nothing very unusual this year; more ebooks than paper, more SF than any other single genre though not quite a pure majority, more than twice as many books by female authors than by males. Blew away all three goals (OK, that's a bit unusual), without expending special effort in December (and that's even more unusual). Lots of rereads left over, as usual. Didn't read a single animal story this year...well, I did read a few, but I categorized them otherwise (a children's book about a dog and his owner, for instance, got categorized Childrens rather than Animals). Lots of pages read. And a lot of ER books done, including quite a few catch-up ones, and a few Netgalley, ditto.

A good year. On to the next!

126h-mb
Jan. 2, 2019, 3:52am

>123 jjmcgaffey: Lois Bujold announced the release of a new novella in The sharing knife world for the end of the month or february.

127humouress
Jan. 2, 2019, 4:11am

>123 jjmcgaffey: Are the Sharing Knife books funny? I may have another go at them then.

128jjmcgaffey
Jan. 3, 2019, 3:23am

Not...really funny. Not overall, certainly - they're kind of desperately important and focused (on survival, long and short-term). But there are some _lovely_ scenes in them. Well, have you read Miles? His books certainly aren't _funny_, but - oh, the sofa scene. Or the one on the crippled ship, when he's drunk the energy drink. Or even bits of the Weatherman story, though most of it is pretty grim. Or Cordelia's scene in Barrayar - "Where have you been?" "Shopping." In the midst of a crucially important series of events, Bujold manages to produce a scene that's so perfect it's hilarious.

What's really funny is that I noticed myself laughing in the first book. But in the third one, I was over at my parents' house and reading - and I came upstairs and Dad asked what was so funny. I hadn't even noticed that I was laughing, but apparently (as I said) I was guffawing at something loud enough to be heard up in the living room (I was down in the laundry room). The funny bits _fit_ the story, so you (or at least I) are laughing without thinking about it - and tense and worried a page or two later, and satisfied by the ending.

>126 h-mb: Excellent, I'll keep an eye out for it.

129humouress
Jan. 16, 2019, 1:58am

>128 jjmcgaffey: Well, I do love the Vorkosigan books. I'll look out for the Sharing Knife ones, then. Thanks.

130jjmcgaffey
Jan. 16, 2019, 3:15am

>129 humouress: Good! I avoided her fantasy for years (because she was an SF writer, darn it!), and it was a waste of my time - the Chalion books and the Sharing Knife and Penric and...are just as good and rich as her SF, with very different angles but very worth reading.

It's actually something I've noticed several times recently - someone who was, in my mind, very firmly on one side suddenly starts writing the other, and it's excellent. Bujold is one; going the other direction, Tanya Huff. Probably Elizabeth Moon did the same thing, but by the time I noticed her she was writing both. Oh, David Weber, too. Some of the reasons why I don't try to separate my fantasy and science fiction...

I've been having a couple null days - I might be sick, but if so there aren't a lot of symptoms aside from sore eyes and a total lack of energy. Yesterday kind of disappeared in a haze. Today was heading the same way, but I got myself in gear a bit and made a quiche (which I've been _intending_ to do since before Christmas) and a new gingerbread recipe, very nice. I didn't go to the ceramics workshop, or to the farmers' market, or to my food business class - that one, I was seriously uncertain if I could drive all the way down there and back up, and decided not to risk it.

I haven't even been reading much, because I'm stalled - I'm supposed to read BOMBs before I can reread all the books that are calling to me (from Nerve as a shared read, to Rocket Ship Galileo, to half a dozen others. I'm reading a BOMB, but it is a really STUPID book - I want to finish it and get rid of it, it's not stupid enough to drop, but Our Hero has a serious case of affluenza and just expects to win every time and he's driving me nuts. It's set at the building of the Panama Canal (not sure if it was a contemporary or recent-historical novel when it was written). The Ne'er-Do-Well by Rex Beach. It's a chunkster, but I should be able to power through it regardless - and I just can't, I'm stalling out after a couple of chapters every time.

So I have decided that this year (as a gift because I beat all my goals last year), I get to use up my paid-for rereads from last year. I had 14 at the end of the year. That makes things a lot better - and I'm going to start Nerve tomorrow.

131humouress
Bearbeitet: Jan. 16, 2019, 4:16am

Yay for letting yourself off the hook!

ETA: do you have a new thread for the new year or are you continuing with this one?

132jjmcgaffey
Jan. 16, 2019, 11:29pm

I have a new thread...and I thought that's where I was posting!

https://www.librarything.com/topic/301139

I'm going to copy most of the above post and put it over there.

133humouress
Jan. 20, 2019, 2:19am

Sorry, my fault for posting a reply so late. I'll hop over and join you, shall I?