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The Murder at the Vicarage | Agatha Christie
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Like @TheAromaofBooks said, I've read this multiple times but I'm always surprised anew by the outcome. I'm not sure what this means—but for me it's super fun to find that the Christie books tend to be mysteries that keep on giving. Great period detail about an English village & how it views women/spinsters/elderly ladies, which means certain troubling elements, as well. I appreciate the sharp wit & the vicar's POV. #GoldenAgeCrimeClub @Mitch

IndoorDame What a cool vintage edition! 2d
mabell I haven‘t seen that cover! 2d
Aimeesue I laughed so much at Len's comments about Mary's housekeeping skills 😂 2d
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batsy @IndoorDame @mabell The old Fontana Christie covers can be so weird/surreal; love them 🙂 2d
batsy @Aimeesue That bit when he wouldn't have minded her quitting but had to work his magic for her to stay 😅 2d
jlhammar Love that cover! 2d
TheAromaofBooks What a creepy cover!!! I think part of the reason I love rereading this one is the humor throughout. I absolutely love Len and find his narration to be rather hilarious. But obviously both my memory and my detecting skills need a little work 😂 2d
batsy @jlhammar Me too! It's so distinctive. 2d
batsy @TheAromaofBooks I'm the same re: memory and detecting skills 😂 On the other hand that makes us the ideal reader for mystery books—we'll always be surprised 😆 2d
Cathythoughts I love this this cover ♥️ 1d
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Mouth to Mouth: A Novel | Antoine Wilson
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Maybe I've read one too many thrillers, but I saw the ending (twist?) coming, just now the how of it. I'm surprised by my reaction; I've seen only good reviews by readers & in the media, but this left me cold. It says something about careerism, male-centric success, & the way money transforms a person once you get a taste of it. But there's Muriel Spark's Loitering with Intent that did megalomania, narcissism & deceptiveness way better. #ToB2023

batsy I thought the writing was sharp & perceptive at times, & I'm not against trying another book by the writer. I probably would have found this book just okay, but the hype led me to expect something quite innovative & surprising, but it was neither imo. 6d
rockpools How disappointing! 6d
batsy @rockpools Yeah. Would have bailed but the praise made me curious to see it through. 6d
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BarbaraBB I can imagine that happened. I was one of the praisers… but I read it before I heard any of it. 6d
jlhammar Thanks for your thoughts! I might start the audiobook soon and will just have to make myself bail if I‘m not feeling it. Not sure I want to push myself through another so-so for ToB. 6d
Ruthiella Excited now to try the referenced Spark title. Thanks for the tip! 6d
batsy @BarbaraBB Yes, I can imagine going into it without knowing anything will probably be different. 6d
batsy @jlhammar Look forward to your thoughts! It might be a better experience on audio actually. The narrative is conversational and propulsive. 6d
batsy @Ruthiella My pleasure! It's a farce but with that Sparkian wit. 5d
kwmg40 I liked the book more than you did, but that ending didn't surprise me either. 4d
batsy @kwmg40 Yes, it felt like it was headed in that direction! 4d
Lindy All of the characters are unpleasant, but I enjoyed this novel. One of the things I loved is its critique of the art world, of art as commodity. How we shape narratives about our lives is another aspect I found interesting. 10h
batsy @Lindy I don't mind unpleasant characters at all; a lot of my fave books are about unlikeable people 🙂 I think I'm perennially online so a lot of the art world critique is something I'm familiar with, but I agree that it does show something interesting about how narratives are shaped. That's probably the most intriguing element about the twist. I also liked how perceptive and sharp the writing was, at times. Would be keen to read another by him. 6h
Lindy @batsy 😊👍 5h
84 likes14 comments
Seventeen | Hideo Yokoyama
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An old-school newsroom drama based on the JAL123 air tragedy, full of details of the workings of a newspaper in the 1980s & how news gets produced. It's also a psychological drama that follows the protagonist, a reporter, through career & personal struggles in the aftermath of the event. It was both suspenseful & boring in parts, much like life, & I could leave it & pick it up any time & be drawn back into the story. A compelling read. #TBRtarot

jlhammar I love newsroom dramas! Sounds great. 1w
batsy @jlhammar If you do give it a try I hope you like it! 1w
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Wine of Honour | Barbara Beauchamp
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Thank you so much @CarolynM for passing on your extra copy for our upcoming #furrowedmiddlebrowclub and the lovely extras. Your beautiful card and message ❤️ I love the pin and bookmark! You're so thoughtful and it was a treat to get this in the mail 😘

CarolynM That was quick! Hope it‘s a good read😘 1w
Cathythoughts That‘s a perfect present ♥️ So lovely! 1w
batsy @CarolynM Thanks again and I hope we all enjoy it 🙂 1w
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batsy @Cathythoughts Yes! 🥰 1w
GatheringBooks Do i spy a notebook? That looks gorgeous! 1w
batsy @GatheringBooks That's a card! It's such a pretty design 💜 1w
LeahBergen So lovely! 🥰🥰 1w
batsy @LeahBergen It is 💕 7d
78 likes8 comments
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It feels a bit wrong to rate or review something like this, which is best described as a therapy memoir. It's essentially transcripts of the author's therapy sessions, & each chapter ends with a summary of the author's reflections. I liked reading it; everyone has different problems but also many problems in common, so it was enlightening in parts & it made me think. I just wasn't a fan of the structure, because it had the sense of a textbook.

Michael_Gee I like the title! 2w
batsy @Michael_Gee Me too! It's definitely one that sticks in your mind. 2w
paulfrankspencer I've seen numerous "reviews" lately claiming a general distaste for reviewing a memoir. Though there may be more merit in your statement regarding this particular book, I struggle to agree with that sentiment. The author, regardless of how personal their story may be, has created a public work to be consumed by the public. Can we not review the entertainment value, the writing style, how well it was produced, how boring their story is? Thoughts? 2w
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batsy @paulfrankspencer I agree; I asked myself the same thing. Once a book is produced and sent out into the world, it can be judged in terms of how one judges books! It's my own personal feelings that get in the way for this one. As mentioned, it's largely just a collection of therapy transcripts. I did find the structure unimaginative but I found value in the transcribed sessions. 1w
vivastory Before I left Twitter I read an interesting post by Anton Hur that although this is a transcript, it's a carefully constructed and edited one. 1w
batsy @vivastory Oh, I'm going to try and look that up. I like that Hur has translated so many different books. I can imagine the editing that went into the transcripts but I appreciate knowing that it was carefully constructed. It's easy to assume it wasn't as a reader, not being able to see the work that went into it. 1w
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Murder at the Vicarage | Agatha Christie
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I'll be reading from my ancient edition of Murder at the Vicarage for #GoldenAgeCrimeClub but I spotted these pretty covers at the bookstore yesterday. They're new to me and much restraint was needed on my part not to get one after reminding myself of my bank balance 🙃

BiblioLitten Cool covers!! 2w
BC_Dittemore Love those covers 2w
Ruthiella I admire your restraint! 👏👏👏 2w
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sarahbarnes I know the feeling! 2w
LeahBergen They ARE pretty! 2w
Smarkies Pretty covers are always tempting! 2w
batsy @Ruthiella Thank you! (she says, as she plots to acquire one or two 😆) 2w
batsy @sarahbarnes The eternal struggle! 2w
batsy @Smarkies *take my money gif* 😁 2w
batsy @Ruthiella I just saw that the vintage copy you're reading has these two books in one edition 🙂 2w
erzascarletbookgasm Oooh I‘ve not seen these new covers! 😻 2w
batsy @erzascarletbookgasm Yes! Saw these at Popular. 2w
IndoorDame I saw these covers too, but I didn‘t have your restraint. The digital version I was trying to read had half the text in blue and was driving me nuts so that seemed like a good excuse 😂 2w
batsy @IndoorDame That is absolutely the most valid reason to get these editions 😁 2w
jlhammar Oooh, I can see why you were tempted! Lovely. 2w
Ruthiella @batsy It does! It‘s an old book club edition from the 1970s and was my mom‘s. 2w
Aimeesue Wow, pretty! I do love great cover design, especially for series. 😍 2w
batsy @jlhammar @Aimeesue I was trying to find out more and Waterstones has a bunch of these...so pretty! 2w
batsy @Ruthiella Even better! A treasured copy ❤️ 2w
willaful Ooo, those are lovely!

I'm a fan of the Tom Adams covers (https://beautifulbooks.info/illustratedbibliographies/illustrators-and-authors/c...)
batsy @willaful That is such a great resource; thanks for sharing! Somehow the French & Spanish ones are moody and excellent. His Chandler covers are also 👌🏾 1w
GatheringBooks Restraint should be my word for 2023. Just bought five books recently, so I could benefit from borrowing some of yours. 🤣😂😅 Gorgeous covers! 1w
AvidReader25 Those covers!!! 😍 6d
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Fragments | Heraclitus
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I can't review this with any sort of authority (thinking about those GR reviews that were all, "THIS IS THE WORST TRANSLATION EVER") but I deeply enjoyed this glimpse into Heraclitus's mind. This translation produced fluid, elegant lines. There's not much context & a lot of it is left up to interpretation, like poems. "Fools seek counsel from the ones they doubt". "One's bearing shapes one's fate." "Things keep their secrets." Highly recommended.

batsy I read the translation by Brooks Haxton. I also dipped into Guy Davenport's 7 Greeks for his Heraclitus chapter, which was also lovely and thought-provoking: "In searching out the truth be ready for the unexpected, for it is difficult to find and puzzling when you find it." 2w
sarahbarnes Great review! 2w
BookishMeandering I love those ancient metaphysical philosophers. 2w
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batsy @sarahbarnes Thanks! 🙂 2w
vivastory I meant to leave a comment about this the other day when I saw your post but I received a late Xmas b&n gift card last week & one of the books I used it for is Heraclitus. Looking forward to it! 1w
batsy @vivastory Oh, great! I hope you find it worthwhile! It's just something that one can dip in and out of anytime. 1w
vivastory It sounds poetic & mysterious. I'm def. intrigued. 1w
GatheringBooks I was a philosophy major my first year in college and I find myself going back to them philosophers for truth and clarity. I was taken, though, by the James Hillman foreword. I love his work as a psychologist. Check out his book - which pretty much shaped my work as a researcher/psychologist/educator. 😘 1w
batsy @GatheringBooks I really enjoyed his foreword, as well! I kept highlighting so many lines. Thank you for the book rec, that looks exactly like my kind of thing ❤️ 1w
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The Corner That Held Them | Sylvia Townsend Warner
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A plotless narrative about a 14th-century convent in Norfolk that is a genuine masterpiece. There are no protagonists; we live with an assortment of characters over the years, through plagues, rivalries, & murder. I found almost every sentence a revelation of the author's incredible artistry. It's a social realist novel of a convent, where the enchantment of holy life is dissolved to reveal flawed people & their material concerns. #NunLitQuarterly

batsy I think what I found most interesting is the emphasis on how the convent is run; the economics of the place; the work that it entails; the kind of networks that are sustained within & without to keep it working; & the personalities that are erased in service of spirituality. But people are people, & whatever is repressed will eventually come out! As such, it's frequently so comedic & I laughed out loud more than once. I loved it 💙 @jlhammar 2w
andrew61 Sounds really good. 2w
LeeRHarry Lovely review 😊 2w
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charl08 Great review- and what a beautiful cover 😍 2w
Tamra They are so very flawed! 👏🏾👏🏾 No glossing over on Warner‘s part. (edited) 2w
batsy @andrew61 She's a really interesting writer! 2w
batsy @LeeRHarry Thank you! 🙂 2w
batsy @charl08 Thank you! The Penguin STW reissues are really nice. I'm hoping to acquire the others... 😁 2w
batsy @Tamra My favourite aspect of the book! No romanticising. 2w
jlhammar Oh my gosh, yes to everything you wrote! Amazing review. I wish I didn‘t have such a busy weekend ahead of me. Can‘t wait to finish (but also kind of sad at the thought of leaving Oby behind). 2w
quietjenn Yes! I've only been able to read a little of it this far, but can't wait to get back to it this weekend. I also love that edition. 2w
Ann_Reads A lovely review and photo @Batsy. 2w
AlaMich I loved this book, and your review is wonderful! 2w
batsy @jlhammar Thank you! I was sad to leave Oby behind as well. I feel like I'm missing something from my daily routine. 2w
batsy @quietjenn I hope you continue to enjoy it! It's such a treat and feels like one of those books that works both if read slowly bit by bit or in one big gulp. 2w
batsy @Ann_Reads Thank you! 🙂 2w
MicheleinPhilly I‘m still waiting on this from the library. 😕 I may have to bite the bullet and just purchase it. 2w
LeahBergen What a great review! And I already miss Oby, too. 2w
batsy @MicheleinPhilly I hope you like it! 2w
batsy @LeahBergen Thank you! What a wholly absorbing world it was 💙 2w
Centique I‘ve almost finished it and then I‘ve come away on holiday for a week and left it at home. Doh! 2w
batsy @Centique Ah, hate when that happens 😂 However you have lovely new books to look at 😍 2w
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Seventeen | Hideo Yokoyama
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This is what I'll be reading for this month's #TBRtarot! I also have Six Four but that's an even bigger book, so it went back on the shelf 😂


BarbaraBB Wow, didn‘t know about this one. Very curious now so I‘ll be following your thoughts on it! 2w
jenniferw88 @BarbaraBB I loved this one! 2w
batsy @BarbaraBB I'm only about a quarter of the way in and I'm liking it so far! Not a thriller, but an absorbing newsroom drama. 2w
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CBee Awesome! 😊 2w
BarbaraBB @jenniferw88 @batsy What can one do? **off to purchase a copy** 2w
batsy @BarbaraBB No, don't! I'll send you mine when I'm done 😘 2w
BarbaraBB That‘d be fantastic of course! And too kind ❤️ 2w
batsy @BarbaraBB It's my pleasure! 2w
68 likes1 stack add8 comments
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A dark fable about the beauty & brutality of nature. It's not at all what I was expecting; Disneyfied-Bambi has a lot to answer for! This is bittersweet, strange, & exerts a bewitching power. I think it's pretty unique because Salten depicts how all life on earth is subject to the forces outside of its control; but there's also a lesson there in not to exalt human ability (i.e. capacity to use technology for violence). #ChildrensClassicRead2023

batsy Thanks again @TheBookHippie for yet another excellent children's classic pick that I otherwise would not have read. My favourite chapter had to be the brief one between the "talking" leaves ? 2w
erzascarletbookgasm I‘ve never watched Disney‘s Bambi 🤷‍♀️. Great review Suba! 2w
TheBookHippie I am still reading a bit a day but I absolutely love it. So far every Disney thing we‘ve read the true story for I prefer the original and especially this one. It is so beautiful. Disney butchered it. Oy. 2w
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batsy @erzascarletbookgasm Thank you! 😘 2w
batsy @TheBookHippie I read a bit every night and I like how it took me to a different place, sort of like being right there in the meadow ❤️ 2w
TheBookHippie @batsy I agree. 💚 2w
sarahbarnes Oh wow, I had no idea! 😳 2w
tpixie I‘ve just started. So far it‘s lovely. I‘m afraid for the sad parts. 2w
batsy @sarahbarnes It was a surprise to discover this original version! 2w
batsy @tpixie I know, I had the same fear! I was reading it very slowly. But the style of writing makes the tough parts easy to bear. Not sure how to describe it; the dark parts are not erased, but the narrative makes it seem like a normal part of life and carries on. In a way it is helpful for the reader, too. 2w
Cathythoughts Bambi❤️ 2w
tpixie @batsy thanks! That‘s good to know. It is a lovely narrative/ voice. 😍 🦌 2w
tpixie @batsy I just got to the leaves. So sweet! 🍁🍂🍁 2w
batsy @tpixie Isnt it 🧡 A lovely sort of intermission chapter. 2w
tpixie @batsy yes! 2w
UwannaPublishme Great review! I just finished reading it and agree with you. Not what I expected at all. 2w
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Fragments | Heraclitus
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Enjoying these cryptic and aphoristic fragments by Heraclitus—and on occasion you'll come across a sick burn, as the kids say 😎

psalva I‘ve been reading Papyrus by Irene Vallejo, and I was intrigued reading about Heraclitus who apparently placed a copy of his book On Nature in the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, which was later burned down by Herostratus. Vallejo writes about his work being the beginning of difficult literature where the reader must wrest meaning from the words. I imagine fragments make it harder to do that… 3w
merelybookish Usually people are royalty or someone famous in a past life. So a refreshing change to be a 🥒. 🤔😆 3w
batsy @psalva I want to read Papyrus! It sounds fascinating. Yes, I'm reading excerpts of Early Greek Philosophy by Jonathan Barnes & he tries to contextualise Heraclitus by giving different interpretations from different writers & it's tough to "read" Heraclitus without attempting to fill in the blanks. I didn't know about the temple & the burning down of it. Ironic, since Heraclitus saw fire as the ruling element of all things! 3w
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batsy @merelybookish There's something pretty cute about the cucumber and sardine bit, isn't it 😆 It's made me warm to Pythagoras, lol. 3w
sarahbarnes Amazing! 😅 3w
Graywacke I love this line! ( @merelybookish I‘m a bit late, but yes, that! 👏 ) 4d
batsy @Graywacke It's great, isn't it. So much of early Greek philosophy is highly relatable because of its style. 4d
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Polar Bear | Candace Fleming
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This picture book has the most beautiful & lush oil paintings that show the polar bears in their fearsome & (yes) cuddly beauty. It incorporates gorgeous colours to depict the silent, icy landscape of the Hudson Bay. The narrative is simple but lyrical, relating the journey of a mother polar bear & her cubs as they search for food & "cope" with habitat loss & climate change. It's evocative & lovely with detailed back matter to explain the science.

Cathythoughts ♥️ 3w
DimeryRene @elisebarker this book looks awesome ❄️❄️ 3w
batsy @DimeryRene It is! Such a visual journey. 3w
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Reggie Did it tell you that they don‘t eat snow. That they have a mechanism in their body that converts seal fat into water? They‘re quite amazing. 3w
batsy @Reggie Yes! This was included in the facts section at the end. It blew my mind; I had no idea! 3w
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Stella Maris | Cormac McCarthy
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Although this is shorter than The Passenger, I found it more challenging. Passenger is loose, warm, & welcoming; Stella Maris is somewhat dense & impenetrable, but deeply rewarding in its own way. I feel like there's a lot of 89-year-old Cormac in young mathematics prodigy Alicia. It feels like a writer who's spent a lot of time contemplating the void & now knows that his time will soon be up. I had to stop & pause a lot while reading this.

batsy "People are interested in other people. But your unconscious is not. Or only as they might directly affect you. It's been hired to do a very specific job. It never sleeps. It's more faithful than God." Alicia is like the classical Cassandra, doomed to utter what are her version of truths but to no avail. She sees things & can't live within the prescribed norms. As a long meditation on the brain & what the unconscious is for, I found it riveting. 3w
Cathythoughts Great review! The unconscious never sleeps …. I love that. 3w
Cathythoughts I‘ve never read this author. I wouldn‘t know where to start. Any guidance is welcome 😘 3w
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paulfrankspencer Fascinating. I've not been reading very much recently, and I'm only 1/2 way through Passenger, but knowing what I know of Alicia and McCarthy, I'm very excited for Stella Maris. @Cathythoughts, I'd probably recommend All The Pretty Horses. Much of his work is quite unpleasant in theme, but can be poetic in truly unique and beautiful ways. The Road or No Country for Old Men are probably his most popular works. 3w
paulfrankspencer Also, based on other comments I've seen, I think a lot of folks would disagree with your assessment of The Passenger. Less warm and welcoming, and more difficult and alienating. That said, I prefer your description! 3w
batsy @Cathythoughts Thanks, Cathy! 😘 I loved that bit, too. There's a lot in this book that needs mulling over. I'm new to Cormac McCarthy too, just started with his two most recently released books, The Passenger and this one, which is a coda of sorts. I asked people who've read him like @paulfrankspencer to recommend their faves or where to start, and The Road comes up a lot 🙂 3w
batsy @paulfrankspencer I'll be interested to see what you think of it! I noticed that some reviews weren't too impressed with Stella Maris but I thought it was a very fitting companion text. And you do get two sides with Bobby and Alicia; with Bobby coming off as the more optimistic one, in a sense. And yeah I seem to be in the minority but I found The Passenger a very welcoming book, strange as it might sound 😅 3w
nathandrake1997 Brilliant review as usual ❤️ I loved this book too ❤️ This book felt McCarthy's ode to both Mathematics and Shakespeare! 3w
batsy @nathandrake1997 Thank you! 💜 And yes, you're quite right. There's something both classical and Shakespearean (Romeo & Juliet) in Bobby and Alicia. Mostly this also made me wish I had a mind for mathematics 😅 3w
jlhammar Wonderful review! You have me looking forward to these books. 3w
BarbaraBB Fab review. I‘ll start The Passenger sooon. 3w
batsy @jlhammar @BarbaraBB Thank you! I hope it meets your expectations 💜 3w
sarahbarnes So interested to see that you liked these! I haven‘t been sure I wanted to read them, but you are making me reconsider. (edited) 3w
batsy @sarahbarnes These seem very particular in that I can't tell who I might recommend them to. I can see that there's differing reactions to Stella Maris even from hardcore Cormac fans. 3w
Graywacke 💙💙💙 I really need to read these. My silly plans get in the way. Great review! 4d
batsy @Graywacke Thanks! 😊 You have some excellent reading plans each year! 4d
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The Corner That Held Them | Sylvia Townsend Warner
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"Since the pestilence it is impossible to find a spare priest at a reasonable price. People think of nothing but money." #EternalPlagueProblems from the Middle Ages to current times...

Only 2 chapters in but I'm loving the utter sumptuousness of the writing. And the humour! Every page a feast of delights. #nunlit #nunlitquarterly

TrishB So true 😁 3w
Jess_Read_This I just read the plot synopsis and this sounds absolutely fantastic. 3w
Kristin_Reads I‘m starting this one on Monday! 3w
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batsy @TrishB The more things change... 😅 3w
batsy @Jess_Read_This It's very dense, but very good so far! 3w
batsy @Kristin_Reads I hope you enjoy it! 3w
jlhammar So good! And I agree about it being dense. There is so much here and I am loving it. I feel like it demands me to be my best reader self, giving it my full attention, but I really appreciate that. I can't wait to really sink into this more today. 3w
LeahBergen I‘m enjoying it, too! 3w
batsy @jlhammar I love that about the "best reader self"! I agree; I put it aside until I have time during the day to fully immerse myself in it. A book that rewards attention and slow reading, I think ? 3w
batsy @LeahBergen Yay! I wish I had her way with words 😍 3w
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Clothes-Pegs | Noel Streatfeild, Susan Scarlett
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The introduction by Elizabeth Crawford to this sweet, feel-good book by Noel Streatfeild writing as Susan Scarlett correctly says that it offers "daydreams to her readers". These are mid-century romances & like Streatfeild's books for children, are suffused with warmth & brimming with charming details of everyday life. I loved being with the Brown family, especially as they made their way through their delicious Sunday tea! #FurrowedMiddlebrowClub

batsy I also loved the details about fashion & modelling during that period, & the way the labour that goes into it was described in detail. And to learn that socialites paid a "publicity man" to do their PR back then⁠—some things are eternal. I was less enamoured of David because as @jlhammar points out the way he sometimes treated or spoke to Annabel felt a bit superior, but that's the way it probably was in that era, especially with aristocratic men. 3w
Aimeesue Oh, those teas! Swimps! 3w
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Tamra @batsy I noticed that too and agree with you. Lovely review! ❤️ 3w
batsy @Aimeesue 😆 Piled high on buttered bread! 3w
batsy @Tamra Thank you! 😊 3w
jlhammar Well said. Great review! 3w
jlhammar @batsy And yes, exactly, that‘s what I meant with how he spoke to her throughout. Very of the time, but I couldn‘t help but look at how George was towards Ethel and wish she had found a relationship more like that. 3w
batsy @jlhammar Thank you! And great point about George and Ethel. A marriage of equals. I think the class and age difference has probably something to do with it where David and Annabel are concerned. 3w
Jess_Read_This Lovely review! I agree with @Aimeesue about the teas and swimps! 3w
Cathythoughts Yes, the warmth of their everyday meals and their little ways of filling their days 🥰🥰🥰 Great review ♥️ 3w
batsy @Jess_Read_This Thank you! I really wanted to be invited to their Sunday tea 😆 3w
batsy @Cathythoughts Thanks, Cathy! Yes it felt so homey and soothing, all those little rituals and meals and how Ethel looked out for them ❤️ 3w
quietjenn Those teas! I totally want to drop by one weekend, and I don't even like shrimp! 3w
Ruthiella Definitely a cozy read! 3w
LeahBergen I was going to comment “shrimps for tea!” but I see we ALL liked that part. 😆😆 3w
rubyslippersreads The “Uncle David” thing was a bit much. 😏 But I loved the 🍤🍤🍤 3w
batsy @quietjenn 😆 How about one of those weekends where there's toast and dripping? 3w
batsy @Ruthiella Yes! The real world was kept at bay for a few hours. 3w
quietjenn @batsy yes, y'all can have the shrimp and I'll take the dripping! 3w
CarolynM Lovely review 🥰 3w
batsy @CarolynM Thank you! ❤️ 3w
erzascarletbookgasm I‘ve just finished. Great review! I‘m not very impressed with David‘s character either, but it‘s a fairy tale. 💁‍♀️ 3w
batsy @erzascarletbookgasm Thank you! That's true about David and the book. What is it about fairy tales and less-than-charming princes? Lol 😆 3w
shawnmooney Batsy! We're in the same Litsy book club! :) I loved this book to a surprising degree. Great review! 3d
batsy @shawnmooney So happy you liked it, Shawn! 💕 2d
104 likes2 stack adds28 comments
On Wanting to Change | Adam Phillips
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Adam Phillips is a British psychoanalyst I've been meaning to read for awhile. The ideal moment cropped up, because what's better to ring in the new year than a book about change? Except psychoanalysis, that maddening, enthralling, bewitching field of study, is here to scramble your brain & upend all of your accepted beliefs & ideas about change being a necessarily good or productive thing. I especially loved the bits on DW Winnicott & Socrates.

batsy The book also has an epigraph by the poet Denise Levertov, "Let's go—much as that dog goes, intently haphazard". Those lines just lodged in my mind & lead me to look up the wonderful poem https://3quarksdaily.com/3quarksdaily/2011/03/saturday-poem-1-73.html : "There's nothing the dog disdains on his way, nevertheless he keeps moving". 4w
Bibliomania Sounds really interesting... but maybe a bit much for my brain right now! Adding it to my list for another time though :)
batsy @Bibliomania I hear you 😆 It's short but I still found it dense enough to need frequent breaks to sit and ponder, lol. 4w
See All 9 Comments
bnp Love the Levertov quote - describes my life. 4w
plemmdog I just ordered Missing Out, after I heard a podcast by one of my favorite film directors, Joachim Trier. I‘m excited to read him! 4w
batsy @bnp ❤️ it feels like a mode of being I need to strive toward! 4w
batsy @plemmdog I have Missing Out on my TBR. That's so cool about Trier mentioning Phillips! I've been meaning to watch The Worst Person in the World. 4w
rockpools Love your review. This sounds so good - but I‘m not sure I‘m up for 🤯-ness at the moment!! 4w
batsy @rockpools Thank you! I hope you're recovering well and feeling better 💜 4w
87 likes6 stack adds9 comments
The Violin Conspiracy | Brendan Slocumb
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A mystery novel slash Künstlerroman about a Black violinist dealing with racism in his quest for artistic & professional fulfillment, plus a missing Stradivarius. Heavy theme, but fun & propulsive. Slocumb explains that the racist incidents in the book came from personal experience. I just found the writing weak & TED-talky at times, & while I didn't mind guessing the twist, I thought the ending was abrupt for a book that was rather long. #TOB2023

BarbaraBB Still a pick though. Glad to know! 4w
batsy @BarbaraBB Yes! I enjoyed it but not one that will stick with me for long. 4w
92 likes2 comments
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I tried to make this last, but I swallowed this picture book biography of Arthur Conan Doyle in one big gulp. The art by Isabelle Follath is truly a feast for the eyes, with delicious details on every page. But I also found Linda Bailey's narrative super cute without talking down to the young reader. It didn't hide some of the darker aspects of Arthur's childhood & poverty, but it was very witty. I think kids of all ages will delight in this.

Tamra Amazing illustration! 😵 4w
batsy @Tamra They're really lovely! 4w
erzascarletbookgasm This sounds good! 4w
See All 16 Comments
quietjenn 😍 those illustrations 😍 4w
LeahBergen Great illustrations! 4w
Aimeesue That is quite the dressing gown! 4w
Jess_Read_This Great review! The illustrations are terrific! 4w
batsy @erzascarletbookgasm It is! Very quick read but a delight. 4w
batsy @Aimeesue Right? Very decadent, very Sherlock 😁 4w
UwannaPublishme 😍🔎🙌🏻 4w
jlhammar Love that illustration! 4w
Cathythoughts Brilliant illustration 💫 4w
AvidReader25 This looks absolutely wonderful! 4w
batsy @AvidReader25 It's lovely! 4w
79 likes7 stack adds16 comments
Liberty Faber Poetry Diary 2023 | Faber & Faber, Limited, VARIOUS. POETS
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I can't lie, the last few years since the onset of the current plague have been difficult. But I hope it's made me better able to appreciate the small, beautiful things that add pleasure to a mundane or challenging day. Even something as trivial as this lovely new planner with fresh pages to start off 2023, with a poem a day 💜

Happy New Year, everyone. Here's to love, good health, peace of mind, and as much reading time as we need 🙂🥂

tpixie Thanks for the lovely wishes. That cover is absolutely gorgeous!! 1mo
Tamra That is GORGEOUS! 😍 Happy planning! 1mo
squirrelbrain So pretty! And Happy New Year to you too. 🥳 1mo
See All 32 Comments
vivastory As I read more poetry in '22 than in the several previous years I have definitely found wisdom, solace & fortitude in it. Happy New Year, friend 🥳📚🎉 1mo
jlhammar So beautiful! Happy New Year! 1mo
Ann_Reads Happy New Year! 🎉 What a lovely bookcover. 1mo
erzascarletbookgasm Lovely! Happy New Year! 🎇 1mo
Sleepswithbooks This looks beautiful 🥰 1mo
Reggie Happy New Year, Suba! 1mo
mrp27 Happy New Year! 🥳 1mo
LeahBergen I bought this, too! Happy New Year to you! 😘 1mo
sarahbarnes Happy New Year! 😊 1mo
Bookzombie Happy New Year! 1mo
Aimeesue Ooooh, so pretty! 1mo
UwannaPublishme Gorgeous! Happy New Year! 🎉 1mo
Suet624 Happy New Year to you! May 2023 bring us some relief!!! Much love to you. ❤️ 1mo
Cathythoughts Happy New Year to one of my oldest Litsy friends ♥️♥️♥️ 1mo
RealLifeReading Happy new year! 1mo
rubyslippersreads What a lovely way to start the New Year! Have a very happy 2023. 😘 1mo
CarolynM That looks incredibly beautiful 😍 I hope 2023 is an easier year for you💕 1mo
BiblioLitten What a beautiful post❤️ 1mo
batsy @BiblioLitten Thank you 😊💜 4w
Centique That is the most gorgeous diary ever! Wishing you a much better year in 2023 💕 4w
batsy @Centique It's so lovely! Thank you Paula and the same to you, friend ❤️ 4w
Mimi28 Happy New Year!! I miss you!! The stationary I have with your name on it made the move to our new apartment!! 4w
batsy @Mimi28 Happy New Year! Awww, I'm so glad to hear that 😁 How are you and how's the new place? 4w
DivineDiana It is beautiful! I have restarted my daily poetry book for the year, that I did not complete in 2022. Therefore, I begin again in 2023! Happy New Year! 🎊 (edited) 4w
Rissreads I‘m late! Happy 2023 ♥️ I LOVE that I get to buy a new beautiful diary every year. I know it‘s lame but it‘s one of life‘s little pleasures for me! (edited) 4w
batsy @DivineDiana Happy New Year and good luck on your poetry endeavour in 2023! That looks so beautiful and I'm sure it'll be lovely to spend some time with it daily 🙂 4w
batsy @Rissreads Happy New Year to you! I'm so with you; such a pleasure and I love picking a new one each year 😁 4w
Mimi28 Thanks!! I am ok, up and down as usual, lol. I really like it here, thanks. How are you? 4w
93 likes32 comments
Jackal | Erin E. Adams
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I should have bailed; I was irritated from the beginning with the writing & characterisation. It felt mechanical & uninspired. I found the author's note at the end about Johnstown & racism more interesting than anything that went on in the novel. There's a recent trend in contemporary American (?) novels of [a serious social issue] overlaid with [genre formula from horror/speculative scifi/myth] that's easily-marketable, but fast becoming stale.

batsy If done well, it could be something special, but if not, it tends to ring hollow. My last read for 2022. 1mo
squirrelbrain Great review, though! 😁 1mo
Aimeesue Spot on about the social issue/genre mashup trend. It can work well at times, but it has to be carefully done, and so often misses the mark. 😕 1mo
See All 9 Comments
batsy @squirrelbrain Thank you! 🙂 1mo
batsy @Aimeesue Yes! For example The Trees by Percival Everett or White Tears by Hari Kunzru got that balancing act right, I think. Both left a lingering sense of unease. 1mo
CarolynM Yes, there a lot of those kinds of books around at the moment. 1mo
batsy @CarolynM Indeed; most come with lots of hype. 1mo
reading.rainb0w I'm currently reading this, and unfortunately my only motivation is the fact someone has a hold on the book and it's due in 4 days lol. I definitely get you on the social issue/genre trope. 2w
batsy @reading.rainb0w Haha! I hope you at least find it somewhat worth your time by the time you get to the end. 2w
67 likes9 comments
The Hours Before Dawn | Celia Fremlin
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A smart, perfectly-structured book of domestic terror, & a perfect way to cap off #CloakAndDaggerChristmas. I never wanted to leave Louise's sleep-deprived mind. The writing is superb & shot through with mordant humour. I love the ironic references to the psychological trends that were part of the 1950s discourse. With gender roles clearly demarcated in this era, the real monster in the house is the husband, imo. Hit him with a frying pan, Louise!

batsy This was also my pick for this month's #TBRtarot @CBee 1mo
CBee Great! Sounds like a good one! 1mo
See All 15 Comments
JamieArc Great review. Love the last line 😂 1mo
vivastory Lol. That last line reminds me of this:
batsy @CBee Yes! Nice way to end the reading year 🙂 1mo
batsy @JamieArc Thanks! 😂 1mo
batsy @vivastory Haha, yes! He definitely had it coming! 1mo
vivastory @batsy 😂 Karma 1mo
merelybookish Nice! Glad you got to end on a good note (after your terrible start.) I managed 3 books for the challenge which I feel is pretty good! 1mo
LeahBergen I really enjoyed this one, too! 1mo
jlhammar Oooh, might need to get my hands on a copy of this. Sounds great! 1mo
batsy @merelybookish Yes! I've enjoyed all of the rest that I've read and it's been super fun. And well done! I'm pretty surprised that I somehow managed 4 😁 1mo
batsy @LeahBergen I would love to read more of Fremlin! 1mo
batsy @jlhammar I recommend it with enthusiasm! 🙂 I am planning to try and read this next year as part of my Christmas crime/mystery reads 1mo
71 likes8 stack adds15 comments
The Hours Before Dawn | Celia Fremlin
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Thanks to the #TBRtarot challenge again for making me pick up a book I own and have been meaning to read for awhile! @CBee

It's also (sadly) the last book I can squeeze in for #CloakAndDaggerChristmas for the wild card prompt 🎄🗡️

quietjenn I've been meaning to check this out! 1mo
CBee Awesome!! 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 1mo
Cathythoughts Excellent book 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 1mo
See All 6 Comments
batsy @quietjenn @Cathythoughts I am looking forward! 👍🏾 1mo
batsy @CBee 🎉🎉 1mo
batsy @Cathythoughts Just finished, and I loved it! ❤️ 1mo
51 likes6 comments
Murder After Christmas | Rupert Latimer
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This was a fun, madcap festive mystery for #CloakAndDaggerChristmas. I enjoyed the writing, which is sharp & witty, & appreciated the over-the-top zaniness of the cast of characters. The only thing is that it does get pretty convoluted, & now that I've finished I'm still not entirely sure what happened? 😂 I do agree with @quietjenn ; because it's so layered it's worth revisiting & I enjoyed how it gently but gleefully lampoons the mystery plot.

rockpools This sounds great! 1mo
batsy @rockpools It's enjoyable & quite different from the usual 🙂 1mo
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LeahBergen This sounds so fun! 1mo
merelybookish Yes the ending did get to be a bit 🥴 but enjoyable nonetheless! Bread upon the water! 😆 1mo
batsy @LeahBergen Yes! I think you'll like it, even if your head might explode 😆 1mo
batsy @merelybookish 😂 My reaction was the same as Margery's! 1mo
77 likes3 stack adds7 comments
My Phantoms | Gwendoline Riley
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Thank you dear Jessie for this lovely #jolabokaflodswap present! My fave chocolate and an author I've been dying to read 😘 Wishing you and your family a Merry Christmas and a lovely holiday season, my friend ❤️ @erzascarletbookgasm

Thank you @MaleficentBookDragon for organising this lovely swap! Wishing you and all Littens who celebrate a Merry Christmas, and happy holidays to all 🎄✨

erzascarletbookgasm I thought opening day is tomorrow! 😅 1mo
erzascarletbookgasm You‘re welcome. You‘ve piqued my interest in the book. Merry Christmas and Happy holidays, dear. 😘❤️ 1mo
rockpools Happy holidays @batsy ! 1mo
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batsy @rockpools Thank you and same to you! I hope you're feeling better and getting lots of rest while in isolation 💕 1mo
batsy @erzascarletbookgasm I had to double check the dates on the form 😂 1mo
LeahBergen Lovely gifts! Happy Holidays to you! 1mo
Cathythoughts Brilliant ♥️🎄 1mo
batsy @LeahBergen Thank you! Merry Christmas & happy holidays, Leah ❤️ 1mo
batsy @Cathythoughts Yes! 😍 Merry Christmas, Cathy ❤️🎄 1mo
CarolynM Merry Christmas Suba🎄💕 1mo
batsy @CarolynM Thank you, Carolyn ❤️ I hope you had a lovely Christmas! 1mo
vivastory Andy Miller has praised this one to the moon. It sounds great. 1mo
batsy @vivastory He has! In general the praise for this one and her other books has me super intrigued. 1mo
80 likes1 stack add13 comments
The Chocolate Cobweb | Charlotte Armstrong
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I thought this was a lot of fun. We know the identity of the murderer early on, but the book is a tightly-wound plot about how they get prove the murderer's guilt. It's a little bit melodramatic, a little bit gothic, but also somewhat noir at times. The setting is an artist's house & the bittersweet ending that was firmly on the side of the youth had me smiling like a fond Papa Poirot. Would love to read more of Armstrong! #CloakAndDaggerChristmas

batsy The book also had a theatrical feel & it lent itself well to being stylishly adapted into an elegant French thriller by Claude Chabrol called Merci pour le Chocolat, starring the sublime & enigmatic Isabelle Huppert. I enjoyed the movie a lot & recommend it, as well! 1mo
Aimeesue Great cover! I'm going to practice that look to use when I am shocked IRL 😁 1mo
batsy @Aimeesue 😆 I read the Kindle version with the boring cover so had to look up some of the vintage ones! 1mo
LeahBergen This sounds fab! 1mo
batsy @LeahBergen I think it's something you'll like! 🙂 1mo
71 likes4 stack adds5 comments
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Nothing but 5 stars for the genius that is Snoopy.

Ann_Reads Agreed! Cheers to Snoopy. 🙂🙂🙂 1mo
batsy @Ann_Reads Always lifts my spirits! 😊💕 1mo
LeahBergen Yes! ❤️ 1mo
See All 10 Comments
vivastory Charlie Brown Xmas Album=Best Xmas Album 🎄🎹 1mo
CarolynM ❤️ 1mo
batsy @LeahBergen @CarolynM The best beagle 😁❤️ 1mo
batsy @vivastory Absolutely!! 🙌🏾 1mo
UwannaPublishme Yes!!! 🥰🙌🏻 1mo
Centique There is nothing better 🙌 1mo
67 likes10 comments
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Figures that Snoopy is a Litten 😂

merelybookish Guilty! 🙋‍♀️ 1mo
batsy @merelybookish Same 😆 1mo
LeahBergen 😆😆 1mo
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Bookwomble 😄 1mo
CarolynM 🙂❤️ 1mo
batsy @LeahBergen @Bookwomble @CarolynM Just need to check out his TBR 😆 1mo
Bookwomble @batsy The Canterbury Tails; The Collar Purple; My Beautiful Man's Best Friend; Gaudalkennel Diary; The Last of the Red Barons; The Fall of the Doghouse of Usher; The Lion, The Witch and the Woodstock; Good Grief! is the Thing with Feathers; Charlie Brown and the Chocolate Factory... I could go on 🙄 1mo
batsy @Bookwomble This is ... I have no words 🤣🤣 Good Grief! is the Thing with Feathers might be my favourite although The Collar Purple is suitably intriguing and mysterious (whose collar? what happens to it? etc.) 😆 1mo
Bookwomble 😁😉 1mo
Centique @batsy @Bookwomble omg the Snoopy version of ED, I will never look at that book quite the same way again 😂😂😂😂 1mo
75 likes10 comments
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A kind of a crappy day was greatly improved by finding this in the mailbox. I think this is from you @LeahBergen ? 😊

LeahBergen It is! Aren‘t the illustrations lovely?? (I have a copy, too, of course 😆). Happy Holidays to you, my friend. 😘😘 1mo
batsy @LeahBergen Thank you so much, Leah! It was one of my most wished for, so I'm thrilled 😘 The illustrations are so pretty! Happy holidays to you too, friend ❤️ 1mo
squirrelbrain Lovely gift! ❤️ 1mo
See All 6 Comments
batsy @squirrelbrain Yes! 💕 1mo
Rissreads That cover is stunning 💛 1mo
batsy @Rissreads Isn't it just? 😍 1mo
67 likes1 stack add6 comments
The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida | Shehan Karunatilaka
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I found this book clever enough, with bits of stellar writing & whip-smart dialogue. It was too long, but my main problem is with the emptiness of its politics. Maybe I'm biased because my family is Jaffna Tamil, though we are Malaysian. I've not experienced any of this first hand, but have heard about it & lost close & extended family members to SL state violence. Maali's glib nihilism as a photographer who has seen it all felt aimless. #TOB2023

batsy I understand that a novel is art, & is not representative of a political view, but I do expect something more from political art than a well-written, riotous, carnivalesque magical-realist tale that is the equivalent of a noncommittal shrug. There was an over-emphasis on the Tamil Tigers as terrorists & less on how it was a response to SL state violence. I didn't expect this novel to provide solutions. But I expected it to have ... well, balls. 1mo
batsy My fave characters in this were the two dogs & the leopard who had all of 2 pages of dialogue, maybe. Perhaps this explains the author's worldview. The locus of political power & why people rebel against a state to the point of taking up arms against it is erased; everyone's equally bad, power is diffuse, & the hard work of taking a side can be avoided. I can get this from your average liberal bro at the bar who's had one too many whiskey shots. 1mo
Amiable Great review! (The cover is lovely, at least. 😬) 1mo
See All 26 Comments
TrishB I haven‘t read, but a wonderful review. 1mo
squirrelbrain Amazing review Suba, interesting to hear your perspective on the politics. I didn‘t like this due to the magical realism and the confusing dialogue, and therefore skim-read it and didn‘t pick up on the detail. 1mo
BarbaraBB I will definitely get back to your review and opinion once I start this book. 1mo
Graywacke Such a thoughtfully scathing review! I plan to read this soon. I‘ll have your comments, and perspective, in mind. 1mo
Graywacke Random side thought question: it‘s about to be released on audio (in 2 days). Do you have a sense whether or not it might work in that format? 1mo
batsy @Amiable Thank you! Yes, it's a pretty great cover :) 1mo
batsy @TrishB @squirrelbrain Thank you! 💜 The magical realism/afterlife bit might not cater to all tastes, I agree. 1mo
batsy @BarbaraBB @Graywacke I hope you both enjoy it! My biases got in the way, I guess, and it was hard to see past that. 1mo
batsy @Graywacke I wish I could help you! I don't do audiobooks at all so am a pretty terrible judge of this. Perhaps @squirrelbrain might have some thoughts? 1mo
BarbaraBB Your biases are very helpful I think. 1mo
Graywacke @batsy thanks, re the audiobook. I‘ll try a sample and decide. (And I‘ll welcome your input, @squirrelbrain ) As for the bias, i‘m so removed from that world that i can‘t comment except to say that your comments are important and informative. 1mo
SamAnne Thank you for this insightful review. I may pass on this one….so many other books to read! 1mo
jlhammar Such a great review! Very interesting thoughts. 1mo
batsy @SamAnne @jlhammar Thank you for your kind words 💜 1mo
vivastory This is such a wonderful review 💙 1mo
Centique A wonderful review! I also believe the issues you raise are important and I might not bother with this one. I hope other, better, books set around the conflict go on to win awards and get attention. 1mo
batsy @vivastory Thank you! 1mo
batsy @Centique Thank you! I do wish there were more novels by minority writers about the multiple conflicts in Sri Lanka caused by ethnonationalist extremism instead of writers from the dominant ethnic group getting the most publicity. The reason why satire like Percival Everett's The Trees works is because it's a novel about racism written by a Black writer & thus it informs the whole perspective. This is a novel set in Sri Lanka that I loved 1mo
Centique @batsy oh good, I had that on my TBR but I will bump it up. I loved The Trees too - I love the way it subverts the genre, while simultaneously having fun with the genre! Riotous and sharp pointed and holding up the imbeciles for the light to shine on all their ugliness. 🙌 1mo
nathandrake1997 While the novel worked for me, in retrospect, I feel Arudpragasam indeed is the better author. Loved both THE STORY OF A BRIEF MARRIAGE and A PASSAGE NORTH ❤️ 1mo
batsy @nathandrake1997 I need to get to A Passage North! I've been kind of "saving" it, so to speak ? 1mo
BkClubCare But what a pretty cover 1mo
batsy @BkClubCare Indeed! 😁 1mo
78 likes1 stack add26 comments
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Thanks so much, Jessie! Apparently the package arrived yesterday but it was collected and I didn't realise it 🙂 So looking forward 🖤

#jolabokaflodswap @erzascarletbookgasm @MaleficentBookDragon

erzascarletbookgasm Glad there was no delivery hiccup & arrived promptly. 🤗 2mo
Cathythoughts Exciting 💫 2mo
batsy @Cathythoughts Yes! 💕 2mo
LeahBergen How exciting! 👏 2mo
69 likes5 comments
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Sent my #jolabokaflodswap package out today. Forgot to take a pic, so here's a festive gnome I spotted at a restaurant 🙂


Cathythoughts What a lovely festive gnome ❤️ 2mo
batsy @Cathythoughts 😁❤️ 2mo
70 likes2 comments
A Gilded Grave | Shelley Freydont
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I don't mean to be rude, or maybe I do, but this was interminably silly. I would have bailed as soon as the 18-year-old "feminist" protagonist & her maid encountered the obeah servant of the sugar magnate & described him as the largest & blackest man they ever did see. I mean? But this fulfilled the nobility prompt for #CloakAndDaggerChristmas so I kept on. A much better book would have had the entire cast of characters pushed off a cliff.

batsy I'm sorry that I cut the cover off halfway in the photo; I thought the hibiscus were far more important 😆🌺 2mo
Cathythoughts Yes the hibiscus is gorgeous. Nice cover on the book too 👍🏻❤️ 2mo
merelybookish Well that's a bummer. Hope your next mystery is better! 2mo
See All 17 Comments
batsy @Cathythoughts They cheer me up 🌺💕 2mo
batsy @merelybookish I think it can only get better! 😅 2mo
Rissreads 🤣🤣🤣 Aghhhhhhhhhhh, splash 💦 (edited) 2mo
sarahbarnes Wow! 😂😬 2mo
batsy @Rissreads 😂😂 2mo
BarbaraBB 🤣🤣Love your conclusion! (edited) 2mo
quietjenn That sounds, um, bad. But a very entertaining review! Fingers crossed for the next one. 2mo
batsy @BarbaraBB 😆😆 2mo
batsy @quietjenn Thank you! I hope your challenge reads are going much better 🙂 2mo
The_Book_Ninja Those flowers are nice though😊 2mo
batsy @The_Book_Ninja They are 😍 2mo
Reggie Oof, Lolol, hopefully your next reads are better. Like we can only go up from here, right? 2mo
batsy @Reggie Exactly, Reggie! 😂 2mo
81 likes17 comments
The Snow Queen | Hans Christian Andersen
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Somehow this is one of those fairy tales that I never read in its entirety. It's a perfect December read for those living in the Northern Hemisphere; the chilly, snowy vibes are immaculate. I loved how the devil in the form of a troll creates an enchanted mirror that distorts everything it reflects. That's a bit of sophisticated philosophy/theology for young readers to think about. So glad to have read it! #ChildrensClassicRead2022 @TheBookHippie

batsy Illustration by Rudolf Koivu, taken from Wikipedia. 2mo
TheBookHippie I just loved it!!! So glad you did as well! 2mo
DivineDiana Love this illustration! I am awaiting my Library copy! 2mo
See All 12 Comments
batsy @DivineDiana I read an ebook without illustrations, so I've been looking up artwork to make up for it 🙂 2mo
TheBookHippie @batsy so many good art depictions!!! 2mo
DivineDiana The joy of technology! Great idea! ❄️👑 2mo
BarbaraBB This has always been one of my favorites! I can still picture it as I did when I was a child! 2mo
batsy @TheBookHippie @DivineDiana Yes! It's been fun 💕 2mo
batsy @BarbaraBB I can imagine how it will stick with you if you read it as a kid! It's so vivid. 2mo
Centique The Snow Queen was always my favourite. It has just a touch of horror about it I think. 1mo
batsy @Centique It does! It has an underlying darkness that feels quite sad. 1mo
80 likes2 stack adds12 comments
The Passenger | Cormac McCarthy
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The general consensus is that if you're new to Cormac McCarthy, you should ease into his works & The Passenger is not the place to start. But I started here, & I'm entranced. It's a love letter to mathematics that's an interrogation about God, theology, spirituality, & the essence of being. I found it odd & bewildering, & also very welcoming, like I belonged in its pages despite not having my bearings most of the time. #ToB #ToB2023

batsy I really enjoyed thinking with McCarthy through the problems of language in this essay: https://nautil.us/the-kekul-problem-236574/ Language is a latecomer to human existence; the problem of how our unconscious tries to guide us is rendered idiosyncratically in Alicia's hallucinations, the characters that show up in Lynchian Twin Peaks-style that she fondly refers to as her (co)horts. The Passenger is all this + an homage to Flowers in the Attic! 2mo
batsy I think there's something undeniably badass about a writer delving deep into these subjects & coming up with a novel as alienating as this at 89. The book is, for this reason, centrally preoccupied with death: "I have never thought this life particularly salubrious or benign and I have never understood in the slightest why I was here. If there is an afterlife—and I pray most fervently that there is not—I can only hope that they wont sing." 2mo
SamAnne Cormac was one of my Dad‘s favorite authors and I feel bad I‘ve yet to read him. Another reading goal for 2023. 2mo
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Itchyfeetreader This is a fabulous review thanks for sharing your thoughts 2mo
Cathythoughts Beautiful review! I havnt read this author … soon 🤞🏻 2mo
Chelsea.Poole Fab review!! 2mo
paulfrankspencer Can't wait to pull this off my shelf. Highly anticipated. 2mo
jlhammar Okay, now I'm even more excited for this. I've seen such mixed reviews, but as a McCarthy fan I was going to read it (and Stella Maris) anyhow. And Flowers in the Attic? I am so intrigued! 2mo
batsy @SamAnne That's a cool (and sweet) reading goal! It's one of mine, too; I'm happy there's more of him to discover. 2mo
batsy @paulfrankspencer I hope you find it worthwhile! Are there others by him you've read? 2mo
batsy @jlhammar I'm glad to hear you're a fan! Which of his previous works are your particular favourites? I'm looking forward to Stella Maris. And the Flowers in the Attic thing is me being very silly 😆 but if you've read the media reviews you might have an idea. 2mo
SamAnne @batsy I even have a copy of one of his earlier books my dad gave me years ago. Time to dig it out! 2mo
batsy @SamAnne Lovely ❤️ 2mo
paulfrankspencer @batsy The Road. Sunset Limited. Outer Dark. All the Pretty Horses. The Crossing. Cities of the Plain. Child of God. Blood Meridian. No Country for Old Men. It's a mixed bag for me. His best is pure poetry and the height of dialogue. His worst is quite unpleasant, but that's kind of what he's going for... 2mo
paulfrankspencer Horses and No Country are my first recommendations for someone who wants to get into McCarthy. 2mo
batsy @paulfrankspencer Thanks! An intriguing body of work, for sure. I've seen fans of his work not quite take to The Passenger, but I found it very readable, and wasn't too caught up in what I didn't get because like you mention, it read like poetry. 2mo
Ruthiella Aw! And here‘s I was determined not to read it and you go and post this! 🤣 2mo
jlhammar @batsy The Road is probably my favorite, but Blood Meridian and Outer Dark were also great. I've been meaning to get to his Border Trilogy (All the Pretty Horses, The Crossing, Cities of the Plain), but haven't yet. They are on my shelves! 2mo
BarbaraBB Like @Ruthiella I thought of skipping this one but now I know I won‘t 2mo
AshleyHoss820 I adore McCarthy! I started with All the Pretty Horses. Every work I read just deepens my appreciation. I *almost* splurged for this book in a box set with the book that goes with it (cannot remember the title…). Maybe after Christmas I‘ll grab it after reading your review! I‘m so glad you liked it! ☺️ (edited) 2mo
Megabooks Wow! Excellent review. You make me want to try it again. 2mo
batsy @jlhammar Thank you for this! I'm very excited to read his older work. I'll probably ease in with The Road. 2mo
batsy @Ruthiella @BarbaraBB Oh dear, now I'm nervous ? There seem to be number of unfavourable reviews on Litsy, so it all depends, I think. Also it does set up a kind of central question or mystery re: the "passenger" but doesn't answer it (and leaves you to draw conclusions), so if that kind of stuff irritates it might not be what you think it is. It's a hard book to describe ? 2mo
batsy @Megabooks Thank you! I know you weren't too fond of it and I'm surprised that it worked for me. Books are mysterious things 😁 2mo
Cinfhen Gorgeous, thoughtful review 💗 1mo
batsy @Cinfhen Thank you! 💜 1mo
batsy @Cathythoughts There's some recs here by people who've read him before. Tagging you in case you find it helpful, too! 3w
90 likes2 stack adds28 comments
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What an unexpected delight this was. James Spooner, one of the co-founders of the Afropunk Festival, details his coming-of-age as a biracial punk kid in the desert town of Apple Valley, California. It's gritty, honest, & tender, with Spooner wading into all the tough bits, like his white mother trying her best to understand his alienation, & befriending skinheads with white supremacist family ties. A complex love letter to music, friends, & punk.

jlhammar I had this checked out from the library, but never got around to it. I‘ll have to rerequest! 2mo
batsy @jlhammar It's good! And eye-opening. My only quibble is about the art in certain panels. 2mo
78 likes7 stack adds2 comments
Murder After Christmas | Rupert Latimer
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Books tentatively planned for #CloakAndDaggerChristmas 🎄🗡️

Alliterative: The Chocolate Cobweb, Charlotte Armstrong
Buddy read: Tagged, with @merelybookish and @quietjenn 🎉
Translated: Murder in the Crooked House, Soji Shimada
Foil cover: Unsure, might skip?
Wild card: The Hours Before Dawn, Celia Fremlin
Nobility: A Gilded Grave, Shelley Freydont
Listen: Not so great with audio books, will likely skip 🙃

Please join in for a murder-y Xmas! 😅

merelybookish Nice work! I'm especially intrigued by The Chocolate Cobweb & Murder in the Crooked House! 2mo
batsy @merelybookish Pretty excited about the Shimada; it's similar to a Christie title and has a Christmas setting! The Chocolate Cobweb too, because I learned that one of my fave Claude Chabrol films, Merci pour le Chocolat, is based on the book 🤩🍫 2mo
55 likes2 comments
Checkout 19: A Novel | Claire-Louise Bennett
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This cast a spell on me, as it might do to anyone deeply in love with books & writing. The singular thing about it is that it blows open the genre of autofiction. It does some beautiful things with language. It seamlessly melds experience & artifice & tries to give form to the act of creation & the process of writing. The physical world is made vivid, but it soars above it into transcendent imagination. Distinctive & special. #TOB2023 #TOBlonglist

TrishB And a wonderful review♥️ 2mo
Liz_M And that's a book added to my wishlist 2mo
jlhammar Yes!!! Fantastic review! One of my favorite books this year, for sure. Hope this ends up in the tournament. I'd love to see how it fares and what the TOB judges make of it. 2mo
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sarahbarnes Beautiful review! ♥️ I really loved this one too. 2mo
batsy @TrishB Thank you, Trish ❤️ 2mo
batsy @Liz_M 🙌🏾 2mo
batsy @jlhammar @sarahbarnes Thank you! I'll be interested to see how far it goes, as well. I love how Bennett's mind works 🤩 2mo
MicheleinPhilly I‘m so mad at myself for not snagging this when it was 99p a couple of months ago! 2mo
Ruthiella Did you read Pond and if yes, how does it compare? I have to admit, I bailed on Pond. Not my cup of meandering… 2mo
squirrelbrain Great review! This is definitely on my planned #tob list! 2mo
BarbaraBB Wow, I must read this one soon! 2mo
Billypar Great review! Sometimes when I go to stack something and find it's already stacked I try to find the original post that put it on my radar. But there are too many positive reviews for this one, so that bodes well! 2mo
batsy @MicheleinPhilly That's a shame! But if you get the chance to read a sample, it might be helpful. As @Ruthiella says, it is a kind of meandering that might not be for everyone 😁 2mo
batsy @Ruthiella I haven't read Pond, but I really want to now! I've mentioned it to a few people who loved this and Pond, so it might be similar in a sense? 🙂 2mo
batsy @squirrelbrain @BarbaraBB Thank you! I hope it works for both of you! 2mo
batsy @Billypar Thank you! I hope you give it a try and that you enjoy it. I think it'll be pretty clear from the first few pages if you feel like you'll get on with it, or not. Her style is distinctive but I can understand that it might not be for everyone! 2mo
LeahBergen Keep an eye out for a little Christmas gift book from me (and Book Depository). 😆 2mo
batsy @LeahBergen Thank you 😁 I couldn't get my act together to send you something in time from here, so a little something is headed your way from BD! 2mo
The_Book_Ninja Lovely review🙌🏼 2mo
batsy @The_Book_Ninja Thank you! 2mo
LeahBergen @batsy Oh, thank YOU! Yeah, December isn‘t a good month for getting my act together either. 😆 2mo
78 likes5 stack adds21 comments
Joan Is Okay | Weike Wang
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Joan, the Chinese-American ICU doctor in her thirties, wonders if the quest for wellness is something like Loch Ness, "a seemingly placid lake with an unknowable monster hiding inside". That astute psychological insight also sums up this novel: an even-tempered narration by its introverted, thoughtful protagonist—probably seen as eccentric by others—that has so much more brewing underneath: identity, gender norms, race relations, work & leisure,

batsy & the most stirring aspect: the relationship to one's parents or the people who raised you. Just like in Chemistry, Wang manages to avoid falling into indulgent sentimentality, but still drops tender, heartbreaking truth bombs throughout about the fraught nature of attempting to know the people in your family as their own persons, & in relation to you. I appreciate her writing & style a lot & look forward to her future books with pleasure. 2mo
batsy I keep thinking of it as a companion book to Sayaka Murata's Convenience Store Woman & Mieko Kawakami's All the Lovers in the Night. The narrators are different in terms of social position, geographical location, & temperament, but it feels like these books are in conversation in terms of painting a portrait of a woman of a certain age, alone, secure in their independence & not in step with society's expectations. #spinterlit roundtable. #TOB2023 2mo
kspenmoll Thank you for your in depth review. I will add this to my TBR. 2mo
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Aimeesue Fabulous review! Thanks 2mo
sarahbarnes Great review! This sounds very intriguing. 2mo
Suet624 I had to screenshot your comments about other books this book reminds you of. For some reason I have neglected to read them and it‘s time I did. (edited) 2mo
batsy @kspenmoll @Aimeesue Thank you for reading 💜 2mo
batsy @sarahbarnes Thank you! I loved being in Joan's headspace. 2mo
batsy @Suet624 It's neat when it feels like books talk to each other across differences! 🙂 2mo
Leftcoastzen Love your review! I‘m glad there are books that represent women that “don‘t fit” expectations & norms.I loved 2mo
BarbaraBB How I can I resist this book after your review and the books you compare it to?! 2mo
squirrelbrain Great review! This is on the #tob longlist but I‘ve been wanting to read it for a while. It‘s not that easy to get hold of in the UK though. 2mo
jlhammar I really enjoyed Chemistry. Going to have to give this one a try sometime! 2mo
batsy @Leftcoastzen Thank you! I just realised that Wang wrote an introduction for that gem of a novel on the woman who doesn't fit in, Villette, which is too perfect. And now I must have it 😆 (Modern Library Torchbearers edition). 2mo
batsy @BarbaraBB @squirrelbrain @jlhammar Thank you! I hope it fulfills expectations when you get to it 🙂 2mo
Leftcoastzen @batsy oh wow! Seems so right ! I loved Villette & me reading it was inspired by how much you liked it . I do remember looking up a lot of French phrases .😁 2mo
CarolynM Great review, as always. I haven‘t been drawn to this, but you might have changed my mind🤔🙂 2mo
batsy @Leftcoastzen Oh yes, the French phrases! 😆 2mo
batsy @CarolynM Thank you! Not quite a plot-ty book but a thoughts-and-musings one, so whenever the mood strikes for something like that 🙂 2mo
Cathythoughts Yes! Great review..and stacked ♥️ 2mo
batsy @Cathythoughts Thank you! ❤️ 2mo
106 likes5 stack adds21 comments
Selected Letters | Jane Austen, Vivien Jones
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I finished this ahead of schedule, because this edition is obviously the shorter one. It's weird to rate a writer's personal correspondence, but it did make me feel like I had Jane near. There is a singular voice & character throughout these letters, which also made me a touch sad: I felt the *realest* Jane, though expressed to her sister, was still very much under wraps. Very bittersweet as the letters bring us closer to her death. #pemberlittens

Ann_Reads A nice review, Batsy, and you're right. How can or does a reader rate a collection of private letters that weren't written with the intent of being placed in the public eye? (Of course it will be a “pick“ from me, as I'm really enjoying JA's humorous side, among other things.) 🙂 2mo
kspenmoll What a beautiful cover! 2mo
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sprainedbrain It is very bittersweet. 💔 2mo
batsy @Ann_Reads Yes, it just feels odd to have to decide on rating scale! But just like you, it's an automatic pick because she's one of my faves and so be default I'm ready to learn more about her 🙂 I agree, she has wit in spades & is always looking for ways to amuse her readers, in her novel and her letters. 2mo
batsy @kspenmoll I love the cover, as well! 2mo
108 likes7 comments
Joan Is Okay | Weike Wang
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"What was wellness anyway? Was it anything like Loch Ness, like a seemingly placid lake with an unknowable monster hiding inside?"

I love how Wang weaves in the most unexpected images into her seemingly placid prose with an unknowable narrator hiding inside.

kspenmoll Wonderful image! 2mo
kspenmoll Wonderful image! 2mo
batsy @kspenmoll It is! The narrator has unexpected insights. 2mo
BarbaraBB Can‘t wait for your review! 2mo
batsy @BarbaraBB I'm liking it a lot so far! 2mo
81 likes3 stack adds5 comments
The Girl from Samos, Or, The In-laws | Menander (of Athens.)
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The Girl from Samos, or Samia, is one of the few "most complete" plays available from Menander's oeuvre. In saying that, it's still very much incomplete. But it's one I grew to like, because the sophistication & cleverness that critics talk about is on display here. I loved the little inter-textual elements, like characters referring to their own personal drama in relation to the Oedipus myth. This is a fitting end to my Greek classics journey.

batsy Image: A scene from Act 4 of Menander's Samia on a mosaic (late 3rd or early 4th century AD). 2mo
Suet624 You‘re at the end? That‘s amazing. 2mo
batsy @Suet624 Yes, it feels pretty great. It's the end as per the schedule I'm following of the classical canon, but there's more unfinished bits and pieces of Menander to discover :) 2mo
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Suet624 I applaud you from afar. 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 2mo
Leftcoastzen Wow! 2mo
batsy @Suet624 Thanks, Sue 😘 2mo
DivineDiana What an accomplishment! I am in awe! 👏🏻📚👏🏻 2mo
batsy @DivineDiana Thank you! 🙂 2mo
84 likes1 stack add9 comments
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Read this for the first time! I found this charming and quirky enough without being overly twee. Paddington has his eccentricities, and having watched the movie, I'm glad to learn that "the Paddingston stare" is a thing. I loved Peggy Fortnum's illustrations as seen above; they gave me such joy. #ChildrensClassicRead2022 @TheBookHippie

Tamra I loved the movie! 🧸 2mo
TheBookHippie Oh I love this illustration !!! ♥️🧸 this read was a joy! 2mo
squirrelbrain Oh, it‘s a thing- I often give people a ‘Paddington hard stare‘! 🤣 2mo
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batsy @Tamra I enjoyed it, too! 2mo
batsy @TheBookHippie The illustrations are so adorable 💕 2mo
batsy @squirrelbrain It will definitely come in handy! 😂😂 2mo
UwannaPublishme Totally agree! This quirky bear warmed my heart too. 2mo
batsy @UwannaPublishme He's such a character! 2mo
Centique Gorgeous illustrations! I used to read these to my kids in a posh English accent to make them laugh. Good memories 🥰 2mo
batsy @Centique The only way to read it out loud! 😆 I'm amazed that I missed out on this as a kid. 2mo
bnp Adding this for when I need a calm or heartwarming read 2mo
batsy @bnp Very soothing! 2mo
tpixie It was such a sweet book! This illustration is lovely!! 2mo
batsy @tpixie It is! I loved all the lovely details in her illustrations 💕 2mo
tpixie @batsy 🐻 💙 2mo
95 likes1 stack add15 comments
The Dyskolos | Menander
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It doesn't seem right to rate a play that doesn't have its text fully intact/available, but Menander's sophisticated and supposedly more nuanced New Comedy made me miss Aristophanes's buffoonish, rambunctious, and wildly imaginative Old Comedy. Aristophanes's dad jokes had a sting to them. I read the translation by Norma Miller, titled Old Cantankerous, and it's basically like if Frasier's dad was the lead character in an ancient Greek play.

sarahbarnes 😂😂 2mo
Ann_Reads So funny, Batsy. That would have been a play worth seeing. ❤ Frasier. Loved that series. 2mo
Megabooks 🤣🤣 2mo
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batsy @Ann_Reads Thanks 😁 Frasier was such fun. I just couldn't help thinking of it while reading this play! 2mo
CarolynM 🤣 But does he have a cute dog? 2mo
batsy @CarolynM Sadly, does not have his own Eddie 😂 2mo
81 likes6 comments
Thalia | Frances Faviell
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I found this book compelling from the start, but the pace of it made me stop & start. But by the time I got to the end, I was really taken with the story! Affecting, emotionally-charged. It's a coming of age story of a young woman & painter & the deeply troubled family she's with for a year in Brittany. I was reminded of Du Maurier in how the sense of place is woven into the psychological drama. You could almost taste the salty air by the sea.

batsy I also want to apologise to little Claude. I judged you harshly but you're the product of your circumstances and have endured some tough moments in life. I'm sorry for comparing you to the Children of the Corn 🙁 2mo
MrsK Great review. Your du Maurier comparison was spot on. 2mo
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quietjenn 😂 to your Claude apology. It's very compelling. I need to make time to focus on it. 2mo
Tamra Love your Claude apology! 😂 2mo
jlhammar Very cool photo - love the shadows! Brilliant review. I hadn't thought of du Maurier, but yes, I can totally see that comparison. And your Claude apology! 😂 😂 😂 2mo
batsy @MrsK Thank you! The writing perhaps doesn't quite hit the highs of du Maurier, but it did feel like a seaside Gothic, in a way. 2mo
batsy @quietjenn @Tamra I owed it to poor Claude 😂 2mo
batsy @jlhammar Thank you! It's got me craving to read a du Maurier that's new to me. 2mo
Ruthiella Claude accepts your apology while he hits you on the head with his beloved football. 😂 Yes to the wonderful evocation of place. The book also made me feel the beauty of Brittany. 2mo
LeahBergen 😆😆 I warmed to that nasty little Claude by the end, too. And now I want to visit Brittany! 2mo
Ann_Reads @Batsy A thoughtful review! Well done. 🙂 That is satisfying when the ending makes the rest of the book a worthwhile literary journey. My eyes perked up when I saw the comparison to Du Maurier. She does psych drama so well! 2mo
CarolynM Just started. I‘ll come back when I‘ve finished🙂 2mo
batsy @Ruthiella @LeahBergen 😂😂 He's wormed his way into my heart, but I'll be on guard! Yes, I really want to visit Brittany now 🤩 2mo
batsy @Ann_Reads Thank you! This might be a fun read during vacation—ideally a French seaside one 😍😆 2mo
batsy @CarolynM I hope you enjoy it! 2mo
Cathythoughts Excellent review 👍🏻❤️ I can see and understand your du Maurier comparison. I think I‘d like to read another by this author. 2mo
batsy @Cathythoughts Thank you! ❤️ Me, too. I've got my eye on this 2mo
Cathythoughts Thankyou! My eye is on it now too , just stacked it. ♥️ 2mo
CarolynM Great review. “Gothic” came to my mind too. The sense of place was so well done and all the English characters seemed to me to be victims of their circumstances to a greater or lesser extent. I can‘t say I ever really warmed to Claude, but I didn‘t feel it was entirely his fault. 2mo
batsy @CarolynM Thank you! Victims of circumstances is quite correct. What with the father absent, as well, it fell on Cynthia to give more of herself to her children, but she wasn't able to do that. I found that aspect tragic. 2mo
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Wealth | Aristophanes
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A superbly engaging first half that descends into a "I gotta get this finished & move on with my life"-type second half, hence the so-so. I thought the skewering of the ideals of the rich was spot on & eternally relevant. Aristophanes goes all in on the gods, who emerge looking like the children of Logan Roy. Assemblywomen & Wealth are supposedly where Old Comedy morphs into Middle Comedy? Thus the awkward growing pains apparent in the structure.

batsy I read the translation by Alan Sommerstein. 3mo
merelybookish Great review! Great pic! Lol 3mo
CarolynM The gods looking like the children of Logan Roy 🤣🤣🤣 So please tell who is who - Shiv is Artemis, right? 3mo
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batsy @merelybookish Thank you! 😆 All I could think about was Scrooge McDuck lol. 3mo
batsy @CarolynM Haha! Hermes was so entitled and slimily opportunistic in this one that he reminded me of Roman 😆 Shiv as Artemis is perfect, actually. And Dionysus as season 3 Kendall. Season 1 Kendall could be Ares. Connor's the tough one! 3mo
LKK526 I love your I gotta finish this and get on with my life. Exactly the way I feel sometimes 😃 3mo
batsy @LKK526 Absolutely! A very relatable feeling 😁 3mo
Suet624 “The children of Logan Roy” was so descriptive. 2mo
92 likes8 comments
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Once again the #TBRtarot helped me get a book off my shelf that's been unread for too long. This is a remarkable piece of scholarship on Black women's lives during slavery in the plantation South. White synthesises a lot of primary resources & archival material to undercut the Jezebel vs. Mammy dichotomy that even popular culture continues to evoke. I appreciate that she restores agency to these women's lives without erasing the horrific reality.

batsy White shows how slave women were not beholden to the regressive moral values that held white bourgeois women in their domestic trap precisely because of the nature of slavery & the gruelling work that it entailed. They broke the gender mold, matching men in all aspects in terms of what they were capable of, but also suffered greater punishments because of it. White writes plainly & presents the facts with empathy. A difficult but readable book. 3mo
batsy It also works for #nonficnov and one that I highly recommend! @CBee 3mo
CBee Awesome 😊 3mo
The_Book_Ninja Great review 3mo
90 likes6 stack adds5 comments
Thalia | Frances Faviell
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Ruthiella Yeah. He‘s only six, but what a little monster. 😱 3mo
LeahBergen Baha!! That image. 😆 Isn‘t he awful? 3mo
jlhammar 😂 That image is too perfect! 3mo
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Tamra 😅 I‘ve got to get cracking on it - super curious! 3mo
batsy @Ruthiella Probably too early for me to speculate, but a chip off the old block re: the mum, it seems like! 3mo
batsy @Tamra It's off to an interesting start; hope you feel the same when you get there 😁 3mo
quietjenn 🤣 I'm about the same place as you but he's definitely making some sort of impression .. 3mo
batsy @quietjenn I'm watching you, lil Claude! 😂 3mo
GingerAntics Wow, that picture. 3mo
erzascarletbookgasm I‘m curious, because I haven‘t started the book. 3mo
batsy @GingerAntics It's from Children of the Corn, which is kind of campy horror from what I recall 😆 3mo
batsy @erzascarletbookgasm I haven't been able to make as much progress as I like, either. Hope you enjoy it. 3mo
elkeOriginal This face will haunt my dreams! 🙀 3mo
CarolynM Looking forward to starting 😵‍💫😵‍💫🤣 3mo
batsy @elkeOriginal Sorry! 😂 3mo
batsy @CarolynM I'm happy to report there's minimal Claude content in chapters immediately after 😆 3mo
66 likes1 stack add17 comments
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Something that sounds great in theory—a matriarchal commune with private wealth & property banished—becomes a toxic, sexist mess in the hands of Aristophanes in this "comedy". Written towards the latter part of his life, this has all the signs of "old man yells at cloud" (i.e. mocks Plato's ideas). The bit about sexual egalitarianism & sex freed from desire for beauty ran into some ugly problems in his depiction. Barmy in a patriarchal way.

batsy This isn't a total pan because it starts out strongly, with the potential to be quite subversive, before petering out into an incoherent locker-room-joke taken too far. (I read the translation by David Barrett. Random image stolen from a website.) 3mo
Leftcoastzen Love your review!😂 3mo
batsy @Leftcoastzen Thank you! 😆 3mo
Angeles Any ancient Greek or Roman dude writing about women is in my experience an angering dumpster fire of misogyny and/or unrealistic weird ideal woman worship. 3mo
batsy @Angeles LOL yes they had some issues, to put it lightly 😆 3mo
97 likes5 comments
Selected Letters | Jane Austen, Vivien Jones
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Me every time I put my book down and step out into the world.

#pemberlittens @sprainedbrain

batsy (I'm reading the Oxford UP edition of the Selected Letters, edited by Vivien Jones, so apologies if I'm out of step with everyone reading the Deirdre Le Faye edition.) 3mo
rubyslippersreads @batsy I‘m reading the Oxford edition edited by Chapman, so I guess I‘ll be out of step too. 🙂 3mo
batsy @rubyslippersreads I'll meet you by the punchbowl as we sit out a few dances 😆 3mo
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sprainedbrain ❤️ 3mo
Ann_Reads Ha! Too funny @Batsy! I suspect Jane's version of dissipation and vice was pretty tame. 3mo
batsy @Ann_Reads 😆 3mo
rubyslippersreads @batsy Less chance of corrupting our morals that way. 😂 3mo
LeahBergen 🤣🤣 3mo
batsy Whoops belatedly realising I started this a day early because I thought Monday was the 1st of Nov @sprainedbrain 🙈 3mo
sprainedbrain @batsy there are no rules!! 😂 3mo
Centique I want this on a tshirt 😍 2mo
batsy @Centique Yes! There's also another gem, written to Cassandra: “You know how interesting the purchase of a sponge- cake is to me.” The best part is that because of the nature of the letters there's very little context 😁🍰 2mo
68 likes1 stack add12 comments
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I am easily scared, so there's that, but this is a short & very well-constructed ghost story with a keen sense of atmosphere. Because of how it builds up & how it ends, it kind of worms its way into your mind & stays there. Less overt horror & more psychological accumulation of dread & terror; a "classic" ghost story, in a sense. Big shout-out to Spider, the dog, without whom I might have also passed out during some of the more intense moments.

Ann_Reads Glad you made it through the book, with the assistance of Spider. 3mo
batsy @Ann_Reads 😁 A most endearing fictional dog. 3mo
sarahbarnes I too am easily scared so I get it! 3mo
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vivastory I definitely need to read this one. Every fall I typically revisit my favorite seasonal reads, this year I read several that I have been on my TBR for years and it has been fantastic. 3mo
LeahBergen @vivastory Do! It‘s a firm favourite of mine. 🖤 3mo
LeahBergen @batsy Great review. And I loved that Spider! 3mo
batsy @sarahbarnes I'm glad to have company 😁 3mo
batsy @vivastory Yes, I recommend it too! Nothing flashy or twisty, and it might not be scary at all for some, but it still leaves an impact. 3mo
batsy @LeahBergen Thank you! ❤️ Spider's the best 🐶 3mo
BiblioLitten Psychological horror is more unsettling to me. Shirley Jackson 🫣. 2mo
88 likes3 stack adds10 comments