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The Gilded Years
The Gilded Years: A Novel | Karin Tanabe
Passing meets The House of Mirth in this utterly captivating (Kathleen Grissom, New York Times bestselling author of The Kitchen House) historical novel based on the true story of Anita Hemmings, the first black student to attend Vassar, who successfully passed as whiteuntil she let herself grow too attached to the wrong person.Since childhood, Anita Hemmings has longed to attend the countrys most exclusive school for women, Vassar College. Now, a bright, beautiful senior in the class of 1897, she is hiding a secret that would have banned her from admission: Anita is the only African-American student ever to attend Vassar. With her olive complexion and dark hair, this daughter of a janitor and descendant of slaves has successfully passed as white, but now finds herself rooming with Louise Lottie Taylor, the scion of one of New Yorks most prominent families. Though Anita has kept herself at a distance from her classmates, Lotties sphere of influence is inescapable, her energy irresistible, and the two become fast friends. Pulled into her elite world, Anita learns what its like to be treated as a wealthy, educated white womanthe person everyone believes her to beand even finds herself in a heady romance with a moneyed Harvard student. Its only when Lottie becomes infatuated with Anitas brother, Frederick, whose skin is almost as light as his sisters, that the situation becomes particularly perilous. And as Anitas college graduation looms, those closest to her will be the ones to dangerously threaten her secret. Set against the vibrant backdrop of the Gilded Age, an era when old money traditions collided with modern ideas, Tanabe has written an unputdownable and emotionally compelling story of hope, sacrifice, and betrayaland a gripping account of how one woman dared to risk everything for the chance at a better life.
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suvata
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Pickpick

Talk about a bunch of privileged white girls! I felt so bad for Anita. I would have felt like a fish out of water with that group as well. I realize it was way worse for her. Lottie bothered me from the very beginning. I knew she would turn out to be a little twit. Great book.

Fictionalized true story of brilliant Anita Hemmings who, in 1897, longs to attend Vassar College. Many of the colleges of the time are not integrated, and Anita is black.

megnews I really liked this! I feel like it sort of flew under the radar and I‘m not sure how. 9mo
LeeRHarry I thought this was a great read too 😊 9mo
suvata @megnews @LeeRHarry It was a great book and I can‘t understand why it was so under promoted. I had never heard of it until someone suggested it to me. 9mo
53 likes3 stack adds3 comments
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janeycanuck
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In the words of Taylor Swift - in my defence, I have none.

I‘m supposed to be reducing the stack of unread books in the house, not increasing... The stack on the left is all gifts or books from my Sweet Reads boxes. But the stack on the right is purchases. Oops.

Aims42 Oooo so many great titles!!! 2y
janeycanuck @Aims42 and I want to read them all right now!! 2y
Aims42 @janeycanuck Haha! That‘s totally me too 😆 2y
33 likes3 comments
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Andrea313
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Which have you read? #PurpleCover #NewYearNewYou
@eggs

Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks 💜💜💜 3y
Eggs Gorgeous💜💜. Have read Secret Garden (edited) 3y
14 likes2 comments
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megnews
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Pickpick

Set on a #college campus, this is historical fiction based on the true story of Anita Hemmings, who “passed” as white and became the first black woman to attend Vassar.
#LetsTravelAugust

OriginalCyn620 👌🏻📚❤️ 3y
35 likes3 stack adds1 comment
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xxjenadanxx
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@laurenslibrary #thursdaysurvey

1. The Gilded Years by Karin Tanabe
2. Crossfire by Andrea Domanski
3. The Fountains of Silence by Ruta Sepetys ( but there are tons in general!)
4. My Goodreads goal was set at 85 but I hit that in April, so I‘m thinking of raising it. I‘m currently at 123/85.
5. @rather_be_reading @jb72 @Lynnsoprano and anyone else who wants to join in!

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xxjenadanxx
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Pickpick

It‘s 1897 and Anita is returning to Vassar College as a senior. For years she‘s led a double life as the quiet but beautiful white daughter of a well to do Boston Lawyer and her true self, the daughter of Southern mulattos who are barely educated and scrimp and save to afford her education. If anyone were to find out she would be ruined, but with a new roommate who is the exact opposite of Anita keeping her secret will be harder than ever.

ShyBookOwl Sounds good! Welcome to Litsy 😊 4y
StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego Hope you're loving Litsy so far 📖💖 4y
Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks Welcome to Litsy!! 4y
12 likes1 stack add3 comments
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xxjenadanxx
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With the completion of this wonderful book day one of #24b4monday has drawn to a close. I read this book in 3 hours and 54 minutes bringing the daily total to 10 hours and 38 minutes!! Woohoo! Now I‘m sleepy. Lol. Onto the next one!

@TheReadingMermaid @Andrew65

megnews I didn‘t know this was being made into film. Would love to see. I hope there‘s still plans for that! 4y
Andrew65 Brilliant time. 🙌🙌 4y
xxjenadanxx @megnews I know! I‘m excited for it, I googled it and it‘s being produced by Reese Witherspoon and Zendaya, with the latter playing Anita. 4y
10 likes3 comments
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nomadreader
Gilded Years | Karin Tanabe
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I look forward to Thursday mornings, when I get to spend time reading this book to get ready for class.

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nomadreader
Gilded Years | Karin Tanabe
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I love when working means prepping for class, which means reading a novel.

13 likes1 stack add
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TheRomantiCate
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@TheBookHippie look what arrived!!! Thank you so so much!!! 🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗

TheBookHippie Yay!!!!!!!!! Phew! Happy reading 📖 (edited) 4y
16 likes1 comment
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JillyMann
Pickpick

A historical true novel set in the late 1800‘s about the first black student, Anita Hemmings, to attend Vassar. She befriended & roomed with one of America‘s top socialites & daughter of one NY‘s most prominent families. The amazing twist, Anita successfully entered as & passed as white. Heartbreaking & infuriating to read is when her “best friend” learns her secret, how the relationship ends & the damage she tries to inflict.

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TheBookHippie
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Pickpick

#giveaway CELEBRATING 50,000
#thebookhippiebooklove
WIN THE STACK!!
Comment below if you want to be in the drawing!!! I'll draw a name Sunday!!!! (Old school style: I'm throwing all the names in a sack and making my kiddo pick a name out!!! 😂😂😂😂📖📖📖📖📚❤️)

Rachbb3 Congrats on your 50K!! 4y
TheBookKeepers I‘d love to be entered! Congrats!! 4y
TheRomantiCate Congratulations!! 🎉🎊 I‘d love to be entered!! There are a couple of these on my TBR 😄😄😄 4y
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wanderinglynn Congrats on 50k! 🎉👏🏻🎉👏🏻 4y
Liatrek Congrats 🎉🎉🎉 I would love a chance 😊 Thank you! 4y
Kaye Great job on your big 50 K ! That‘s a nice selection , thanks for sharing. 🌸 4y
obviateit Congratulations! I‘d love an entry! 4y
bookandcat Congratulations! I'd love to enter! 4y
Victoriahoperose Congrats! I would love to enter 😊 4y
emilyhaldi Ooohhh great stack, yes please! 🙋🏻‍♀️ 4y
Hooked_on_books Oh nice, count me in! And congrats! 4y
Whimsical.Curiosity Woooooop check you out!! *Drops name in hat* 4y
JenReadsAlot Congrats! Yes please!! 4y
57 likes13 comments
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Momob121
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Found the historical fiction section at Emerald Isle Books! Took a pic so I could remember the titles.

StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego Welcome to Litsy 👍📚 4y
Wife Welcome to Litsy!🌹 4y
Momob121 Thanks!! 4y
CarolynM Welcome to Litsy🌼 4y
Eggs Welcome 👋🏻🌸 4y
12 likes5 comments
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WanderingBookaneer
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#KindleDailyDeal s are all great today! They are a bit more expensive than usual, $4.99, but still less than a paperback would cost. https://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/s/ref=mh_s9_acsd_hps_clnk_r?node=7533915011&pf_rd_m...

MelissaSue81 Ooh! I loved in a dark dark wood. I started Luckiest Girl Alive but couldn‘t get into it. Is all the missing girls worth $5? 😋 5y
Vertabrain I‘d pay 5 bucks for, All the Missing Girls. It wasn‘t my favorite, but I gave it a solid ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 5y
80 likes2 comments
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Kshakal
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Pickpick

What an interesting read... all though a bit fluffy at times it still tackled an important issue for women and especially women of color. This book made me want to read more about this time period. Overall, a solid read!

45 likes1 stack add
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Kshakal
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The snow is still coming down so I see no reason to get off of the couch! Good thing I am liking this book!!! #wintersucks

BookishTrish What a cozy photo 5y
41 likes1 comment
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Chelsibeau
Gilded Years | Karin Tanabe
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$20.88 before shipping 😃#bookmail

Cinfhen 👍🏻 5y
eanderson Whoa! Nice haul!!! 5y
SilversReviews Great stack. I enjoyed CITY OF WOMEN. 5y
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Chelsibeau @SilversReviews I started the one on audiobook but the narrators voice drove me nuts. Going to give it a try in print this time. 5y
SilversReviews @Chelsibeau That is upsetting when the narrator has an irritating voice. 5y
Melissa_J Nice! 5y
61 likes6 comments
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JennaRoot
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A little lunch time reading... I have had this on my nightstand for awhile, it's time to get 'r' done! lol I have library holds coming in this week and plenty of #botm to catch up on as well! 😬

8 likes2 stack adds
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Sharpeipup
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Mehso-so

While I loved the premise (and the cover), the book took a rather long time to hook me. I think I checked this book out 9x but I finally finished it! #slowread #hunginthere

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Sharpeipup
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Who comes to mind? "Money does not give people charm. It usually provides them an excuse not to be charming. " #money #truth #wouldyouagree

Megabooks 🤔🤔🤔🤔 6y
14 likes1 comment
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Gezemice
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Mehso-so

Absolutely fascinating subject, about 1897 exclusive women-college graduate Anita Hemmings, who passed as white to attend. Unfortunately, the book does not live up to its promise, turning the story into a poorly written young-adult romance novel mostly about Anita's uberrich, spoiled roommate and her gilded social life - parties, love triangle, gossip. The race issue is marginal.
Between pan and so-so, upgraded for subject and effort. ⭐⭐/5 ...⬇️

Gezemice This article sums up the interesting story: https://vq.vassar.edu/issues/2002/01/features/passing-as-white.html. No need to read the book unless you enjoy young adult romance (which I don't). 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa Such a shame...this deserves a good historical treatment. 6y
Gezemice @Riveted_Reader_Melissa It does! I tend to react worse to books that have a good premise but don't deliver than to those that are bad from the start, because disappointment is worse... 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @Gezemice I completely agree there... sometimes with low expectations I can be pleasantly surprised. But when I go in with high expectations... and seriously the actual true story of this lady's life must have been quite extraordinary. 6y
Gezemice @Riveted_Reader_Melissa Yep, she was brilliant and beautiful and her parents were uneducated janitors - it is a very unlikely story. It was not a terrible book but it could have been so much better 6y
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Gezemice
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Another anachronism. Aaaaahhh! Just when I was starting to accept the writing.
I don't mind that she uses contemporary language for 1895, but at least weed out concepts or words not known back then. Especially not by an average older black woman.
#anachronism #wherewastheeditor

Hollie Ugh! That drives me nuts! 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa Ok.... I've got nothing to rationalize this one away for you, sorry. 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa And I really tried last time too... to try and make that one possible. 😕 (edited) 6y
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Riveted_Reader_Melissa Wait..... here it is....Maybe she was so smart she discovered inheritance and genes BEFORE Mendel, and told everyone who wouldn't listen because she was a woman, soooo Mendel stole her work and passed it off as his own and got all the credit from history.....🤣 (edited) 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa Plus of course she named them genes decades before the term was coined...and that credit was stolen from her too.....🙁 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa Sorry, it sounded like such an interesting book too when I first read the description.... I wish it was more accurate with history to make it a better story and representation. 6y
Gezemice @Riveted_Reader_Melissa It is a great story, but anything interesting about it can be found in this article: https://vq.vassar.edu/issues/2002/01/features/passing-as-white.html. The book adds nothing to the inherent appeal of the story - unless you like young-adult romance novels written at the eighth-grade level. 6y
44 likes7 comments
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Gezemice
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This is supposed to be a dialog between two girls in 1895. There is no way anyone would have talked casually about carbon monoxide in 1895. This is a very 21st century expression.

Anachronisms like this can really throw me off. If this was not a book club book I would have just stopped reading it.
Anyone else feels the same way?
#anachronism #wherewastheeditor

Riveted_Reader_Melissa Unless it's some steampunk, alternative history thing that's super annoying. 6y
TrishB I would probably bail on it! 6y
Texreader I agree with you. My grandmother lost an older sister and all her kids to carbon monoxide poisoning. It was a terrifying topic during those days. 😔 6y
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Gezemice @Texreader Oh no! That is a real tragedy. 😔 6y
Gezemice @TrishB Yeah, but it is our book club book. The subject matter is really interesting and it is based on real history, so I am interested in finding out what happens. The writing is not up to par to the story, unfortunately. 6y
Gezemice @Riveted_Reader_Melissa Yeah. Especially when it is about a real historical event. She took tge time to research what kind of lamps were used, you'd think she or her editor would have caught this. 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa Actually.... maybe we are all off... looks like Carbon monoxide was fairly well know earlier than we thought. http://science.jrank.org/pages/1210/Carbon-Monoxide-History.html 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa "The earliest description of carbon monoxide poisoning date to at least 200 BC by Aristotle.[135] Documented cases of carbon monoxide being used as a method of suicide date to at least 100 BC in ancient Rome.[135] In the AD 350s, the Roman emperor Julian suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning in Paris, and later described it in his work" according to Wikipedia (for what that's worth) 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa " In 1895 J. S. Haldane demonstrated that the formation of carboxyhaemoglobin is an equilibrium reaction which depends upon the relative partial pressures of carbon monoxide and oxygen in inspired gas. Haldane's interest was stimulated by the problems caused by carbon monoxide in British coal mines" http://www.encyclopedia.com/science-and-technology/chemistry/compounds-and-eleme... 6y
Gezemice @Riveted_Reader_Melissa It was certainly known - but not by the name "carbon monoxide". And it certainly would not have been a casual remark between college girls studying. 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @Gezemice LOL maybe they just learned about his experiments in class. Just think that and maybe you'll feel better while reading it. 🤔 6y
Gezemice @Riveted_Reader_Melissa No. The experiments were done in 1895... 6y
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @Gezemice maybe his discover was just on the front page of the newspaper? 6y
52 likes1 stack add13 comments
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TheBookDream
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TheBookDream
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Haven't started it, but it's due in two days with a hold on it? Challenge accepted! #libraryfeesarerentalfees

15 likes1 stack add
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sherrynuts
This post contains spoilers
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I've been so caught up in Anita's life that I've failed to post anything about it! The novel is about Anita Hemmings who successfully passes for a white women to gain entrance to Vassar College. It's loosely based on the real Anita Hemmings, who did pass as white to gain entrance to Vassar and was the first African-American graduate of the school.

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sherrynuts
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Up next!

14 likes1 stack add
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CocoReads
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#bookhaul a very mini one...I held myself back to just one book tonight but I'm pretty sure it's going to be a winner!

Leigh0906 I've had this on my TBR for a while! It looks so good!! 6y
CocoReads My sister said it was good and she has pretty good taste so I'm sure it'll be excellent! 6y
christineandbooks This was pretty good! A subject I hadn't known anything about... 6y
49 likes4 stack adds3 comments
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Moonpa
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I don't know when I think I'm going to read all these library books!

Pinkmeghan I freaking loved The Wall of Winnipeg and Me!!! It's funny to see how huge the pb is since I read it on my kindle! 6y
Moonpa @Pinkmeghan I had ordered it and I was surprised to see how big it is! But if it's good then the length doesn't matter! Thanks! 6y
Pinkmeghan @Moonpa I was actually surprised when I found out how many pages it turns out to be because it went so fast for me! 6y
13 likes1 stack add3 comments
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anniemoon
Mehso-so

Great story, occasionally mediocre writing. The exposition dumps were particularly awkward. 3.5 stars.

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Buddys_Momma
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Pickpick

This novel is based on the true story of Anita Hemmings, the first African American woman to graduate from Vasser College in 1897. Anita was light-skinned and able to pass as a white woman because at the time, Vasser did not admit women of color. Having to hide her true identity must have been devastating, not to mention her fear of being found out by her school and fellow students. An interesting story about a courageous woman. #2016reads

12 likes1 stack add
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v_cuev
Gilded Years | Karin Tanabe
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Pickpick

#thisshouldbeamovie #seasonsreadings2016

I love period films and I think this would be a great one. The book is the slightly fictionalized story of the first black woman to graduate from Vassar by "passing" as white.

Reviewsbylola I am looking forward to this one but it seems to have mediocre reviews. Glad you liked it! 6y
v_cuev I thought it was good. Some of it was clearly fiction but I thought it was eye-opening. The author does a good job describing the fear of being found out as well as the inner turmoil of having to make a decision to "pass" in order to get the education one wants and deserves. 6y
31 likes5 stack adds2 comments
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Ellebeekay
Gilded Years | Karin Tanabe
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Excited to start this book as it takes place at a women's college and I went to one myself!

9 likes2 stack adds
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dolleygurl
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On my day off I'm catching up on my audio book, making ham bone broth for my dad's split pea soup, and finishing the last of the unpacking.

candc320 Split pea soup is my FAVORITE!! 6y
dolleygurl @candc320 I had never made or eaten it before but it came out really good! 6y
5 likes2 comments
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Kirby
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Mehso-so

All the necessities for our semi-annual family 'read-in.'
and a pumpkin. because fall.
finished The Gilded Years & returning now to Moscow...
#fallreading

3 likes1 stack add
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Wife
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Pickpick

#onceuponabookclub I subscribed too late to get this book, but picked it up at the library so I could read and participate in questions on #instagram. Based on truth, I appreciate the story even more.

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Valink
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Gym reading

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Valink
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"I even brought a special hat for the occasion." She reached into her bag for a straw hat with a straight brim and a navy blue ribbon tied around it. "One can not be duplicitous without the right headwear."

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Sharpeipup
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Perfect end to a rainy day= a pretty book and a pot of tea.

8 likes1 stack add
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CeceD
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Living, really living, is awfully entertaining.

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Valink
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I subscribed to Once Upon a Book Club Box this month. I can't wait to start reading so I can open these goodies! This is going to be a true test of my willpower.... Especially since I need to finish Underground Railroad first before my library e-loan expires!

BookishMarginalia Looks great! 6y
BooksTeasAndBookishThings Fun! Let us know how the goodies are with the book! 6y
8 likes2 comments
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LyndseyReads
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I went to three bookstores in Austin and am officially distracted from my prior TBR.

17 likes1 stack add
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KarenaFagan
Pickpick

Fascinating story.

15 likes1 stack add
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abbylibrarian
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Pickpick

My favorite historical time period, a college story, an interesting fictionalization of a strong woman I knew nothing about. Checked all my boxes!

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raelaschoenherr
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So fun! I'd forgotten that I won this on a Goodreads giveaway from Atria Books. I've heard good things, so I'm excited to read it!

Reviewsbylola Great win! I am looking forward to this one too. 6y
5 likes3 stack adds1 comment
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whelanmaria
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Fantastic library haul today. Anyone have a suggestion of what I should pick first?

Reviewsbylola I have no suggestions but I really want to read The Gilded Years and Dear Fang. 6y
whelanmaria @Reviewsbylola We have similar taste! I'm so excited about both! 6y
BookishFeminist We Love You, Charlie Freeman is great & relatively quick :) 6y
whelanmaria @BookishFeminist Just started We Love You, Charlie Freeman. Thanks for the rec! 6y
21 likes1 stack add4 comments
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LauraBeth
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Tonight's book

18 likes1 stack add
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Kathyd
Pickpick

Beautifully written story of the first African American woman admitted to Vassar. The secret of her race becomes paramount as she finishes her senior year at the prestigious college. Should she be true to herself, continue the ruse, or follow her heart?

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KatyAliceReads
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Pickpick

4.5 🌟 A perfect historical fiction novel for an afternoon read. While much of it reads as just the story of a young woman navigating social spheres at the turn of the century, it does explore hypocrisy and casual racism in a way that is still extremely relevant.

It tends to drag at the end.

Reviewsbylola I definitely want to read this one! 6y
11 likes1 stack add1 comment