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She Would Be King
She Would Be King: A Novel | Waytu Moore
A novel of exhilarating range, magical realism, and historya dazzling retelling of Liberias formation Waytu Moores powerful debut novel, She Would Be King, reimagines the dramatic story of Liberias early years through three unforgettable characters who share an uncommon bond. Gbessa, exiled from the West African village of Lai, is starved, bitten by a viper, and left for dead, but still she survives. June Dey, raised on a plantation in Virginia, hides his unusual strength until a confrontation with the overseer forces him to flee. Norman Aragon, the child of a white British colonizer and a Maroon slave from Jamaica, can fade from sight when the earth calls him. When the three meet in the settlement of Monrovia, their gifts help them salvage the tense relationship between the African American settlers and the indigenous tribes, as a new nation forms around them. Moores intermingling of history and magical realism finds voice not just in these three characters but also in the fleeting spirit of the wind, who embodies an ancient wisdom. If she was not a woman, the wind says of Gbessa, she would be king. In this vibrant story of the African diaspora, Moore, a talented storyteller and a daring writer, illuminates with radiant and exacting prose the tumultuous roots of a country inextricably bound to the United States. She Would Be King is a novel of profound depth set against a vast canvas and a transcendent debut from a major new author.
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mdemanatee
She Would Be King | Waytu Moore
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Books I‘ve picked up at Women and Children First in the past week or so

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xxjenadanxx
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#weekendreads @rachelsbrittain

1. I'm about to start The Downstairs Girl by Stacey Lee, I'm also reading Between a Rock and a Hard Place by George Zelt
2. She Would Be King by Wayetu Moore
3. Teeth in the Mist by Dawn Kurtagich and The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys

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GypsyKat
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Wow. This was truly compelling. I‘m not sure how to classify this one. Historical magical realism maybe? It was a fascinating mix of mythology and history and legend. Some tough subject matter for sure, but was beautiful written. Powerful.

EllieDottie I loved this book! 2mo
GypsyKat @EllieDottie It was so good! 2mo
62 likes1 stack add2 comments
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GypsyKat
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I did some #AudioBaking today. Brownies with chocolate chips, pecans, and Nutella. I‘ve got a cold glass of milk, and a couple of jealous dogs. 😋😋😋

JoScho Brownies are just the best! 2mo
Jen_Reads That looks delicious 😋 2mo
Bookzombie Drool! 2mo
Grrlbrarian Fabulous!!! ✨ 2mo
97 likes4 comments
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GypsyKat
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I did some #AudioCrafting the other day while listening to the tagged book. It‘s hard to get a good picture of them, but these are the mini #FunkoPops in their Weasley sweaters from the advent calendar last Christmas. I made them into ornaments. 😊🎄❤️⚡️ #PotterHead

MommyOfTwo 😮❤️ 2mo
GrilledCheeseSamurai Holy awesome sauce! Great idea. 😍😍😍 2mo
Sweetkokoro That so cute!!! 2mo
See All 16 Comments
GypsyKat @GrilledCheeseSamurai Thanks! It was really easy, too! I‘m probably going to do some more. I like having some of them on display, but not all. This way I‘ll still get to enjoy them during the holidays. 😊😊😊 2mo
GypsyKat @MommyOfTwo @Sweetkokoro Thank you! ❤️😊 2mo
Soubhiville What a great idea! I was thinking of getting the advent calendar this year, but wondering what I would do with the toys... how did you make the snow? 2mo
DGRachel Gred and Forge! My favorite Weasleys! 😂 Seriously, though, these are awesome! 😍😍 2mo
JoScho I love these! Can you give us a brief tutorial? Did you use glue? 2mo
GypsyKat @JoScho @Soubhiville These were really pretty easy! I bought the globes at Michel‘s last year so I had those. I had some artificial snow, and I had small acrylic discs that I brought from Amazon. So first I hot glued the figures to the discs, then I hot glued the discs into one half of the globes. Then I put some fake some mostly under (and a little over) the discs, then I glued the second half of the globe on and added string. That‘s it. 😊❤️ 2mo
mrp27 Love! 2mo
Soubhiville @GypsyKat thanks, I really love them! So creative 🧡 2mo
GypsyKat @Soubhiville Thank you! I was going to just drill tiny holes in the tops of them for eye screws in them, but this way is less permanent if I ever feel like displaying them. ❤️ 2mo
erzascarletbookgasm Wow! Great job! Love them! 2mo
KirstieE What a clever idea!! I love them 😍😍 2mo
98 likes16 comments
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GypsyKat
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I was doing some #AudioCleaning and organizing in my craft room tonight. Arya likes to keep me company by laying on top of the cedar chest and look out the window. 💖
#DogsOfLitsy

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xxjenadanxx
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Pickpick

Fun fact: The striped background I chose here is actually an example of Liberian 'country cloth' which is a heavy cotton that is hand-spun and hand-woven before being hand dyed in colors like blues and tans, cut into strips and sewn together to create the striped pattern.

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xxjenadanxx
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Today's library haul! A refresh was needed after the weekends reading. Which ones have you read?

1.Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
2.The Bride Test by Helen Hoang
3.The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
4.A Boy and His Dog at the End of the World by C.A Fletcher
5.The Philospher's War by Tom Miller
6.She Would Be King by Wayetu Moore

Deifio Good Omens! Very nice! That books had me laughing so much. The new TV series is a very good adaptation. BTW is that a lamp to the right? Looks cool 🤩 3mo
xxjenadanxx @Deifio I haven't seen the show yet but I'm looking forward to it! It isn't a lamp, but that would be cool. Just a decorative armillary sphere from Amazon! 3mo
TrishB Poisonwood Bible 👍🏻 loved it. 3mo
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Emilymdxn Good omens! I‘m a huge fan I just read it this year before the tv show came out (edited) 3mo
SharonAlger I loved the tv show of Good Omens! 3mo
jewright Poisonwood Bible was haunting. 3mo
AmyK1 The Poisonwood Bible 👍🏼 3mo
Scochrane26 The Poisonwood Bible is a top 5 favorite book. It‘s amazing, my high schoolers at camp actually recommended it to me. Started my love of Barbara Kingsolver. I think this is her “masterpiece”. 3mo
Scochrane26 I also think Good Omens is hilarious. 3mo
Zelma Good Omens and The Poisonwood Bible are fantastic, albeit very different. I think I‘m in the minority but I hated The Bride Test; nothing like the sweet and sexy Kiss Quotient. 3mo
xxjenadanxx @Scochrane26 it's the book that's been on my TBR the longest (according to Goodreads) so I decided I needed to finally tackle it this year. 3mo
xxjenadanxx @Zelma I love variety! I hope I like the Bride Test because I really loved the Kiss Quotient. 3mo
66 likes12 comments
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Currey
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Pickpick

I was expecting an historical fiction about the formation of Liberia and found myself in a Fantasy super hero tale. Gbessa, our MC, is a wonderful character whose life unfolds in unexpected ways. The other characters were not as well formed but I liked the idea of them. Good first outing for this author. #sjp #bookclubcentral #liberia #readingaroundtheworld

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KathrynElise
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Pickpick

This was an odd read, but I really enjoyed it. I‘m not usually one for anything focused on modern history, but by blending African-American history with mystical tales of witches and curses, Moore managed to have me hooked from the start. The only thing that I think may have added to the book is more detail on each of the characters - I found I just didn‘t develop any strong attachments to these characters. Overall though, a pretty great read 👍🏼

KathrynElise Also works for the #popsugar2019 prompt: “A book written by an author from Asia, Africa or South America” (Moore was born in Liberia 🇱🇷) 4mo
5 likes1 comment
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KathrynElise
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“If she was not a girl or if she was not a woman... She would be king”. - Wayétu Moore, ‘She Would Be King‘

Of all the lines in this wonderful book, this resonated with me the most. ❤️?

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KathrynElise
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Keen to make a start on this baby and what better way to do that than with a coffee in hand? Yay for Saturday mornings 📖☕️

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MallenNC
She Would Be King | Waytu Moore
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This book is a retelling of the creation of the nation of Liberia and is the most recent book I‘ve read that is set in #Africa. I listened to the audiobook, which is read by the author. I really liked her reading style. #LetsTravelJuly

OriginalCyn620 👌🏻📚❤️ 4mo
BookwormM Sounds good for reading around the world 4mo
26 likes2 stack adds3 comments
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essence_dionne
Pickpick

I didn't know "She Would be King" was historical fiction about Liberia when I first started reading, and ended up being pleasantly surprised. I loved Norman Aragon, June Dey, and especially Gbessa. I wanted them to win; to get through all hurdles that came their way. This is a book I'd come back to.

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essence_dionne
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I wanted to read this because I thought the title was dope... I didn't know what I was about to get into, and it's been a pleasant surprise. When I have time to read, I have a hard time putting it down.
#SheWouldBeKing #HappyFriday #books

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MallenNC
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Pickpick

I enjoyed this book, which was recommended for me by @bookriot through their Tailored Book Recommendations (TBR) program. I listened to it and that made me a little confused at times about what was going on, but overall I enjoyed it. There's magical realism in this story, which is something I don't usually read. What I liked best were the strong women characters. I also liked hearing the author read her own work.

21 likes1 stack add
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SoManyBooksNotEnoughTime
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Mehso-so

"They told us we had no history but darkness, so they kept the books away for fear we might understand the truth better, and thus find those lost selves"

I had a tough time getting into this book in the beginning, but really starting enjoying it about a third of the way through. I loved learning the history of the founding of Liberia. For once, I actually feel like this story would be stronger portrayed on screen than as a novel.

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MallenNC
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My current audiobook. I‘m just starting to get a good idea of what‘s happening but I like it. The author does the narration and she is great.

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JulietteGF
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Mehso-so

I'm glad I got to read this book. Despite a difficult beginning (quite fuzzy), I was able to really enter into the story. It reads well, I liked the use of magical realism which here looks more like tales & legends. It was a very interesting book to read, I just wished it had been more detailed so the characters would have been more developed. It's between so-so and pick...

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Plaidsticks
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Pickpick

💛💛💛 So glad I ended up buying the audiobook instead of going with the physical book from the library, thus I could binge listen. So good. So, so good. Probably my favorite book so far this year. #audiobook

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deadrabbitsbooks
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This book is intense already 😧

28 likes1 stack add
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deadrabbitsbooks
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Editor-in-Chief Katie Rainey is reading Wayetu Moore‘s She Would Be King with her 9th graders this year ❤️
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#bookstagram #bookstagrammer #amwriting #amreading #writerslife #writingcommunity #writersofinstagram #readingseries

46 likes2 stack adds
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tricours
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Pickpick

I‘m a but disappointed with myself for not paying more attention during the first half of the book. I thought these were short stories at first, then when I realized they weren‘t I also realized that I should have figured that out earlier 🤦‍♀️ Great book though!

37 likes1 stack add
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hdhubbard
Bailedbailed

6/10 Struggled to keep track of the characters and story line. Stopped a 1/3 way in, may try to read again at a later date

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amma-keep-reading
Pickpick

I read this book like I used to savor candy bars when I was a little girl: enjoying the book in small chunks to extend the experience and savor the magic of it.
📚
This is beautifully written story.

3 likes1 stack add
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razmanda
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Pickpick

Actual perfection. Three blessed (or cursed) souls fight for versions of freedom, intermingling with one another and the history of the founding of Liberia. So, so good. Magical realism at its finest, paying tribute to African folklore and with lyrical prose. All the stars. All of them. #readingblackout #onceyougoblackout

30 likes1 stack add
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razmanda
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31 likes1 stack add
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TheNextBook
Pickpick

I loved this book. Loved the way the three different narratives converged and separated. Loved the way Moore explored the different aspects of the world from colonialism, racism, colorism, classism, superstition and religion. Her writing was haunting and unsettling yet stark. I couldn‘t put it down.

30 likes1 stack add
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TheNextBook
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Started this today and so far I‘m really enjoying it. She has done a really great job with world building and I am here for all of it. I‘m halfway through my TBR pile and so far this month I have not been disappointed. #readBlackwomen

57 likes6 stack adds
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LibLib
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Mehso-so

I wanted to love this book so much, but it didn't meet up to my expectations. I give it a "so-so" rating because the 1st half was excellent and made me go through so many emotions but the second half, *le sigh*, it fell flat. There was so much build up in the 1st half but that momentum was unfortunately lost as the story continued. I recommend to read only because the first part was so good and unique and who knows, maybe you can look past rest.

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Mel
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21 likes2 stack adds
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Mixedreader
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Pickpick

Incredible book. Just finished for #24in48

23 likes1 stack add
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shaynarae
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed everything about this book, but I was slow reading it and often found myself distracted and having to reread passages. I can‘t figure out why. Possibly because it‘s written in the style of a long-form folktale and I‘m simply used to this style in short story format. Regardless, I still think this is a book worth picking up.

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strandbookstore
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Pickpick

Here's a #staffpick from Basement bookseller Andrew: "I love books that feel like a folktale, that are familiar without being stale. Wayétu Moore‘s debut She Would Be King feels like a favorite story I haven't heard since childhood. Magical realism at its best, refracting the founding of Liberia in a prism so that, through the other side, we may see our modern world all the more clearly. Equal parts funny, sweet, romantic, brutal, and wondrous." ✨

71 likes8 stack adds
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Jeannie
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“Kindred souls will always collide.”

This is a beautifully written book. I‘m about halfway done.

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SandraG
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She would be Queen ijs!!! Yes! I‘ve waited for this book and now I have it! Happy Reading to me📗🥰

6 likes1 stack add
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Redwritinghood
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Mehso-so

I found the story very uneven and some characters added solely for interest and not for the story. The first part was stronger with some good character-development, but the second part failed to use those characters to their potential. While centered around an interesting part of history, the book overall was bland. 2.5⭐️ #indiebuddyreads

mklong Well said Jerrie! I couldn‘t agree more. 12mo
Redheadrambles @Redwritinghood yes completely agree in fact I think we all did in the end which is interesting! 12mo
71 likes2 comments
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Jolynne
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Pickpick

An interesting snippet of history focused on the beginning of Liberia told with touches of magical realism.

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Owlizabeth
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#weekendplans let‘s see how much reading the kiddos let me get in!

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mklong
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Mehso-so

Sigh. I really thought I would love this one. There are some brilliant elements and the story is a fascinating one, however it just never quite comes together convincingly. The pacing is very strange as well. At times, it feels so rushed that the characters aren‘t developed and at others, it feels weighted and plodding. It‘s not terrible by any means, but it isn‘t great either.

#indiebuddyreads

Redwritinghood That‘s too bad. I‘ve barely made a dent in this one. It‘s been a busy weekend. I hope I can finish soon, though. (edited) 12mo
Redheadrambles @mklong yes I 💯 agree with you here the pacing is odd. I gave it the benefit of the doubt “pick” but it‘s on the edge and I was willing it to be better as I think the story had potential 12mo
61 likes3 comments
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Redheadrambles
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Pickpick

⭐️⭐️⭐️

This a tough review to write because my feelings on this book are so mixed. On one hand I learned a terrific amount about the foundation story of Liberia. But it is certainly a novel of two parts, the first section I enjoyed much more than the second.
The magical realism had a tendency to drift into a super-hero caper in parts. A solid if not entirely successful debut.

Bring on more stories from Liberia !

28 likes3 stack adds1 comment
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Beckys_Books
Pickpick

I'm an engineer, so magical realism doesn't always work for me. I like Real. And I like Obvious Magic. Magical elements that make me question accepted reality - not so much. But, I LOVED THIS BOOK. it's based on the founding of Liberia. The desire for freedom by the 3 main characters is also the beginning of the nation's formation. But, like most people grounded in reality I now want to know the "real" story of Liberia.

Ruthiella Love it when a book surprises me like that! 😀 (edited) 12mo
Megabooks Sounds fantastic!! 12mo
57 likes4 stack adds2 comments
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Beckys_Books
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I love to read by the Christmas tree in the morning before getting ready for work. Only 50 pages left in this book, but I don't think I have enough time to finish it this morning.

Amiable Such a beautiful scene! 12mo
Chelsea.Poole Reading by the Christmas tree is just so cozy! I feel the same way...wish I had time to do it this morning! 12mo
CouronneDhiver 😍😍 12mo
Daisey ❤️ 🎄 12mo
75 likes4 comments
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Beckys_Books
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Iced coffee sounded good with breakfast today even though it is only 15F outside.

Tamra Perfect breakfast! 12mo
63 likes1 comment
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Beckys_Books
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Snow storm on the way? Bring it on. I've got a book and a blanket and no reason to leave the house.

Christine Bliss! 12mo
CouronneDhiver Lovely! 12mo
Cathythoughts Oh definitely! Bring it on .... 👍🏻❤️ 12mo
JacqMac Sounds like a perfect day. 12mo
nibech Perfect! 12mo
73 likes1 stack add5 comments
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Beckys_Books
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In my happy place...

What you can't see is The Christmas Chronicles playing on Netflix above the fireplace. It's the most wonderful time of year!

Planning to shop small tomorrow at our local downtown. There are a couple of lovely bookstores I plan to go to.

Jee_HookedOnBookz Book shopping is the best kinda shopping! 12mo
MicheleinPhilly I‘m all about Small Business Saturday. I love it! 12mo
63 likes2 comments
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Beckys_Books
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Working my way through my recent purchases. Picked this for my next read because I can't handle the chunkster or another political nonfiction read.

reluctantangeleno Love the visual checklist! 12mo
48 likes1 comment