The Empty Family

Of course, I read an amazing, wonderful book…and I have to follow it up with a terrible one. It never fails, does it?

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I’ve had The Empty Family on my shelf for awhile–it was one I picked up from the $1 shelf at Half-Price. I had liked Brooklyn, so I thought I’d pick something else up from Toibin. I didn’t realize until I got it home that it was a collection of short stories.

Which, ok, short stories do not always doom a book. But, I just have such a hard time with them. There’s never enough time to get into anything. Some authors are great at this. Most just don’t cut it for me.

If you’ve been around for awhile, you know how much I HATE JAMES JOYCE. Nothing EVER happens in his stories. These were a lot like modern day Joyce. There is a main person, usually a gay male, has a very vague problem to solve. There’s some tragic backstory that we get very little of, but it really is super important to the whole underlying issue. It’s all very dark and sad and it’s supposed to be beautifully depressing, but mostly it just comes off limp.

Next please!

Trees of Reverie June Read-A-Thon End

June is ending, so that means the ReadaThon is ending too. Sad Face.

I was able to get through quite a few books on this challenge:

  1. Walden by Henry David Thoreau
  2. Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Tyler
  3. Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor
  4. The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
  5. Divergent by Veronica Roth
  6. Raven Stole the Moon by Garth Stein
  7. Aimless Love by Billy Collins
  8. Days of Blood & Starlight by Laini Taylor
  9. Brooklyn by Colm Tobin
  10. Dreams of Gods & Monsters by Laini Taylor

I also started The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux, She Walks in Beauty by Caroline Kennedy, and listened to a few more chapters of Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy.

By reading these books, I completed quite a few challenges on Trees’ challenge list. I did way better this time than on her last prompt list, so I’m pretty psyched about it.

  1. Read a popular or well-known book.
  2. Read a book you’ve heard a lot of good things about.
  3. Read something recommended to you by a friend.
  4. Read a book from your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  5. Read a book to go towards a specific reading challenge.
  6. Pick out a book from your TBR jar and give it a go.
  7. Read a book you’ve been meaning to read.
  8. Read a book you’ve been avoiding.
  9. Read a book you’ve had lying around unfinished.
  10. Read a book by an author you haven’t read before.
  11. Finish a book in a series you’ve not yet completed (although I ended up finishing the series by the end of the challenge).
  12. Read a Classic.
  13. Read a book in the Fantasy genre.
  14. Read a book in the Contemporary genre.
  15. Read a book from a genre you don’t usually read.
  16. Read a book featured in Booktown’s Book Club.
  17. Read a poetry book.
  18. Read a book written by or focusing on POC #weneeddiversebooks
  19. Read a book from thebookishdragon’s Book Lovers List
  20. Recommend a book to a friend or a fellow book blogger.
  21. Join discussions on the Treesofreverie Read-A-Thom Goodreads Group
  22. Share some of your favorite quotes from the books you read
  23. Write a book review for one of the books you read.
  24. Take pictures of your reading progress.
  25. Show off your books by taking more pictures.
  26. Start a reading journal (I already had one…so this was a bit of a cheat.)

How did your challenge go?

Brooklyn

I just finished Summer at Tiffany, which was set in 1945 and from the perspective of a Iowa native coming to the big city to work in expensive retail.

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Now, I’ve read NYC from a completely different perspective, at much the same time period. Brooklyn by Colm Tobin is the story of Eilis, who gets a generous offer from a priest to come from Ireland to the US. He sets her up in a little boarding house full of very fickle single women…good LORD would I go nuts in that house. She has a pretty sweet gig working in a well-respected retail shop.

The gals go to all the dances, of course, and Eilis meets a handsome Italian man who seems different than all the other Irish boys she’s met. Does she really love him though?

The uncertainty she feels is what is unique about this book. It’s not the man who is holding back and the girl who is left with unrequited love. I like that the author played to us women who sometimes just aren’t so sure we want to rush into things.

This is just really a sweet story about a young woman coming of age in an unfamiliar world. I definitely recommend it, and it’s a very quick read. It was a welcome reprieve after some of the heavier books I’ve stacked on during this readathon!

WWW Wednesday 6/25/2014

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What are you currently reading?

Brooklyn by Colm Tobin

Days of Blood & Starlight by Laini Taylor

Aimless Love by Billy Collins

 

What did you just finish reading?

Raven Stole the Moon by Garth Stein

Divergent by Veronica Roth

The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman

 

What do you think you’ll read next?

Dreams of Gods & Monsters by Laini Taylor

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain

She Walks in Beauty by Caroline Kennedy

WWW Wednesday 6/18/2014

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What are you currently reading?

Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor

The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman

Aimless Love by Billy Collins

 

What did you just finish reading?

Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Tyler

Walden by Henry David Thoreau

For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway

 

What do you think you’ll read next?

Divergent by Veronica Roth

Raven Stole the Moon by Garth Stein

Brooklyn by Colm Tobin

 

Trees of Reverie ReadaThon June

For those of you who have been following the blog since the beginning (first of all, I love you!), you will remember the readathon I did back in April. It was a week long marathon reading session, where I got through 5 books.

Trees of Reverie is holding another one, beginning today (well it was midnight Monday her time, but she’s on the other side of the of the globe from me) through June 30th.

I have a stack of books to read, and I’m sure I’ll read a few ebooks as well! Here’s what is on the list:

Henry David Thoreau, Walden

Philip Pullman, The Golden Compass

Garth Stein, Raven Stole the Moon

Colm Tobin, Brooklyn

Ernest Hemingway, Old Man in the Sea

Veronica Roth, Divergent (A reread for bookclub next week)

 

I started Walden today and I’m about a quarter of the way through it. Hoping to get at least halfway, but it’s a piece of work. Are any of my readers joining in with the readathon? What are you guys reading?