Unraveled Wednesday, 9/9/20.

Joining Kat and friends for Unraveled Wednesday.


The afghan slog continues. One of these weeks I will be able tp post a photo of a finished afghan. This is not that week.


Burn the Place by Iliana Regan. I didn’t get very far in this memoir by a chef. Her writing style was choppy and put me off. YMMV. 2✭

The Daughters of Foxcote Manor by Eve Chase. Sort of mystery, sort of suspense, a good story about families. 3✭

Long Bright River by Liz Moore. This book was so good! The opioid crisis in Philadelphia and in particular in the Kensington area where the novel is set are clearly important to the characters and thus to the reader. It is a police procedural and so much more. Protagonist is a 30-something woman police officer in Philadelphia whose younger sister is an addict on the street. They were raised by their grandmother after their mother ODed and their father disappeared. Granny is a hard, cynical woman. Clearly, the culture of this novel is a l-o-n-g way from anything I ever experienced or knew. The extended family is all blue collar with a not-insignificant number of other druggies and dealers among them. Acceptance of one’s lot is the norm. Their attitude towards anyone who tries to improve themselves by going to college or aspiring to anything better than the gritty lives in Kensington is that the person “thinks they are better than us.” Protagonist was accepted by two colleges, but granny refused to fill out the financial aid forms, saying that she would not help her granddaughter incur a load of debt that wouldn’t benefit her. The writing is rich and evocative, the scenes so real. 5✭ (That is a rating I almost never give.)

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlepig by Tad Williams. This novella had been bouncing around in my Kindle app for at least a year, but the title put me off. It shouldn’t have because this was a delightful little fantasy read. 3★

Days of Abandonment by Elena Ferrante. Although mosmanyt readers adore this author’s works, I have not been able to get into them. I tried unsuccessfully to listen to My Brilliant Friend; I hoped this book would be better. It may very well be for others, but I quickly ran out of patience with the main character’s histrionics when her husband abandons her and their children. The Italian temperament depicted turned me off. Once again, YMMV. 2★

Between the World and Me by Ta-Hehisi Coates. Yeah, I am at least three months behind the rest of the world in reading this book. I am listening to the audio version and trying to absorb as much as possible. My thought while listening was how a life-long state of stress and high levels of cortisol may go partway to explaining the shorter life spans and generally lower levels of health of BIPOC. What we Whites have done and do to BIPOC is heart-breaking and shame-making. 4★

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8 Responses to Unraveled Wednesday, 9/9/20.

  1. Kat says:

    Wow, The Long River sounds excellent! I am off to find out if my library has it! Thank you! (and I agree with you on your comments on Ta-Nehisi’s book. It is painful, and having friends who feel fear every day that they leave their house, it is something that is very close to me.)

  2. gayle says:

    Scribbling booknotes here!
    Though I’ve found that these days I’m reading fewer new books and just re-reading old favorites…

  3. Kathleen Walsh says:

    Yesterday I read a book entitled “Real Fake Love” by Pippa Grant. it was a romantic comedy and I laughed out loud at so many passages that I felt delighted. I cannot remember the last time I found writing so hilarious, yet heartfelt. I mean real belly laughs, and those do a great job at releasing endorphins that counteract the stress hormone cortisol. I highly recommend the book for those who want to laugh. It is zero dollars on kindle unlimited. I am trying another of her books today, but it is just not very funny.

  4. kimsdee says:

    “Chef,” “choppy” — I get it.

  5. Kat, you and I don’t waste time on books we don’t like. I have been a book snob for a long time. I did finish Nobody Will Tell you This but Me, as I mentioned.

  6. k says:

    I returned a book – no, two books – today that I abandoned. One was short stories and the first thing that happened in the first story is the narrator killed somebody. The second one the narrator announced her intention to kill herself. Okay, I see the map and I don’t want to go there.
    RE: Coates; I haven’t read The Beautiful Struggle yet, so you’re ahead of me.

  7. I haven’t read Between the World and Me yet, so you’re not the last one to read it. It’s on my list, though. There’s a lot of books about the BIPOC struggle out there, and I’m just glad that they’re getting the notice they need to help create change.

  8. Some interesting sounding reads here, thank you for sharing them.

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