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Kat_H

Kat_H

Joined July 2018

⚡Word hoover⚡
blurb
Kat_H
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It's my birthday today and so far my presents are all books or stationery, including a biography of Anne Bronte complete with handstitched Hebridean tweed book cover. Feeling very spoilt!

Marilyncjackson Happy Birthday 🎈🎂 12mo
JaneyWaneyB Happy Birthday 🎂📚🎈🎁 have a lovely day 😁 12mo
9 likes3 comments
blurb
Kat_H
Plainsong | Kent Haruf
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You know it's Christmastime when your bookmarks are Quality Street wrappers...

review
Kat_H
The Tobacconist | Robert Seethaler
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Pickpick

Oh my this was good. So good. Heartbreaking and funny and important. Follows 17 year old Franz as he moves to Vienna during the late 1930s and the start of Hitler's reign. A must-read for these times. I think, anyway.

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Kat_H
The Chalk Man | C. J. Tudor
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Pickpick

What is it about the festive season that makes me reach for murdery thrillers? Haha. Romped through this and enjoyed every little gory death and shocking twist. The last bit in particular had me squeaking with joyful disgust. 😂

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Kat_H
The Chalk Man | C. J. Tudor
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Library hauling in readiness for the festive season!!

11 likes1 stack add
review
Kat_H
Tin Man | Sarah Winman
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Pickpick

A simple story of love and loss, beautifully and tenderly told. The cover put me off for ages (yes, I'm stupid like that. My bad.) but I'm glad this book and I finally crossed paths.

Finally over my flu/cold/lergy/whatever it was and am planning to head to the library in the next couple of days for a festive season binge read haul. Very excited.

TrishB Loved this book 💕 12mo
Kat_H @TrishB have you read any of her other books? I feel like I need to go find some 🙂 12mo
TrishB I‘ve read them all and loved them all 💕 12mo
Kat_H @TrishB 💚 12mo
11 likes4 comments
review
Kat_H
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Pickpick

Spending a lergified weekend under a poorly blanket and this stellar retelling of one of the stories of the Trojan War. Pat Barker uses Briseis' voice to give a woman's perspective on one of the most famous wars of all time. Magnificent read.

9 likes1 stack add
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Kat_H
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Mehso-so

I'm all about the quick and easy reads this December as things are a bit busy until Christmas itself. Picked this up from the Horror recommended reads shelf. Highly tense and pacey. A bit too gory for me but I have a low gore threshold haha.

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Kat_H
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Bailedbailed

All the books I want to read are already checked out from the library mnargh! Every. Single. One. So I picked this up off the shelf. I usually love a Proulx but this didn't grip me at all and I had to bid it adieu at 50 pages in.

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Kat_H
The Sealed Letter | Emma Donoghue
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Pickpick

Juicy! Not at all like Room (which I loved) but the fact that Emma Donoghue can write so well in different genres shows how brilliant an author she is.

5 likes1 stack add
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Kat_H
Circe | Madeline Miller
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*EXCITING NEWS KLAXON* NPR have just published their annual Book Concierge list for 2018. I've discovered so many brilliant reads over the years because of this list and I can't recommend it highly enough. It covers most genres too so that should make for a lot of happy reading. Enjoy!

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Kat_H
Good Morning, Midnight | Lily Brooks-Dalton
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Pickpick

Ohmygoodness. This is marvellous. Beautiful and subtle and tender and also about the end of the world. And the ending...oh! So good. Can you tell I loved this? I finished reading it about an hour ago and my chest is still full of 💖

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Kat_H
Dark Isle | Clare Carson
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Panpan

This sadly did very little for me. The daughter of an ex-spy finds her father's past catching up with her. The pacing, the characters, the plot...all left me a bit meh. I finished it because I kept thinking maybe...Maybe it will all suddenly matter at the end. But...nah. All the characters could have died grisly deaths and I would have just shrugged my shoulders. Just wasn't my cup of tea at all.

blurb
Kat_H
Dark Isle | Clare Carson

Happy Friday, you lovely lot! I was wondering who your favourite murder/mystery/thriller authors were? I've got a few long journeys coming up so I'm on the hunt for something gripping and pacey to make the travel zip by! I loved Jane Harper's The Dry and also anything by Tana French. Any recommendations for me? Thank you so much!

DannyHattan If it‘s not fantasy I can‘t help 🤦🏻‍♂️😂 interested to see what others recommend though 👌🏻 13mo
Kat_H @DannyHattan haha 😄 well if you had to recommend a fantasy novel to someone who never reads fantasy, what would you suggest to get them started? 13mo
DannyHattan @Kat_H go straight in at the deep end ..... #nevernight by Jay Kristoff is a great read. Really dark and gritty. #theeyeoftheworld is great high fantasy that will keep you going for a while and #magician by Raymond E. Feist is nice and light at the beginning. Good luck 😊👍🏻🙌🏻 13mo
5 likes3 comments
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Kat_H
Vox | Christina Dalcher
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Pickpick

This just gets a thumbs up from me. Set in a dystopia where women are only allowed to say 100 words a day, it reminds me a lot of the Handmaid's Tale. It's sinister and disturbing and gripping and sadly very much a novel for our times. #MakeOrwellFictionAgain

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Kat_H
Vox | Christina Dalcher
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Only 70 pages into this and I'm hooked. It reminds me so much of The Handmaid's Tale. Set in an imaginary near future America where women are only allowed to speak 100 words a day, this has left me grinding my teeth out of anger and frustration. 🤐

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Kat_H
Devil's Day | Andrew Michael Hurley
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Mehso-so

I loved The Loney a LOT so was really looking forward to this, Andrew Michael Hurley's second novel. Especially as I heard him speak at a recent 5x15 event. Unfortunately this one just didn't grip me in the same way. It was ok, but just felt a bit flat. Lots of potential plot interest but they all kind of fizzled out. You can tell the author is in love with the landscape and that was beautifully written.

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Kat_H
Devil's Day | Andrew Michael Hurley
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Long train journeys + Sunday paper + book.

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Kat_H
Idaho | Emily Ruskovich
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Pickpick

I had to wait an eternity for some MONSTER to return this to the library (they'd had it overdue for THREE MONTHS. The rage!). But it was worth the wait. I'd heard many good things about this and it really got me in the gut. What a sad, powerful story about the fallout from a senseless, violent crime. So lyrical. Reminds me very much of Marilynne Robinson and Alice Munro. My only little criticism is I felt the middle could have been trimmed a bit.

10 likes1 stack add
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Kat_H
The Moons of Jupiter | Alice Munro
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Pickpick

Short stories by Alice Munro. She's so good at understanding all the hidden layers of regular people.

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Kat_H
A Ladder to the Sky | John Boyne
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Pickpick

Well. This had a few surprises up its sleeve. It never went quite where I expected it to go and that's no bad thing. I was still on a hunt for something like Hearts Invisible Furies but this was quite different. Bit of a slow start but for me it got better as it went on and I was motoring through by the end. I also LOVE it when authors sneak in references to their characters from other novels.

KatieDid927 It‘s def been a slow start for me, only about 40 pages in and it hasn‘t remotely grabbed my interest yet. All the positive reviews have me pushing through that though! 13mo
Kat_H @KatieDid927 yeah, such a slow start and I didn't find the characters particularly likeable! I loved the middle section though. Have you got there yet? 13mo
KatieDid927 @Kat_H I‘m over 2/3 through and it‘s gotten faster but I still don‘t enjoy it at all. I‘ve found it all incredibly predictable and Maurice so unlikable that it‘s not remotely enjoyable. I‘ll finish it but I‘m really not understanding why so many people love it. He has narcissistic personality disorder and steals from everyone. Okay? I knew what he was doing to Erich immediately, I knew he‘d steal his wife‘s book. Just, meh. 13mo
Kat_H @KatieDid927 I understand how you feel 🙂 13mo
KatieDid927 @Kat_H Thanks! 😊 13mo
12 likes1 stack add5 comments
review
Kat_H
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Mehso-so

I was looking for another Donal Ryan book but it wasnt on the library shelf (even though the catalogue said it would be - boo!). This was a really moving book that packs a real punch, especially toward the end. I won't say any more because of spoilers. Nicely written but I have to be honest I got a little bored 3/4 of the way in. 🙈 Sorry, Donal Ryan. I definitely want to read the one I was looking for though.

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Kat_H
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Pickpick

Needed a book like this this week. A good old romp of a mystery that you can gobble up in a couple of sittings. I loved The Dry and when I saw this on the library shelf, I knew I had to pick it up.

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Kat_H
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Pickpick

I loved John Boyne's "Heart's Invisible Furies" so picked this up when I was at the library. I think it might be YA though as it's very simply written and not very nuanced or lyrical like HIF was. Still. A sweet, hopeful story.

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Kat_H
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Mehso-so

I've never read Vonnegut but this was shyly sitting on the Recommended Reads shelf in the library calling to me. I have to be honest, don't know how to review this. I recognise why this is powerful and good writing, but, truth is, I didn't enjoy it. Maybe you're not really supposed to. Maybe it's one of those that just sits under your skin a while and you think about it long after you're finished with it. So it goes.

6 likes1 stack add
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Kat_H
Our Homesick Songs | Emma Hooper
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Pickpick

Another corker. Alternates between the 70s and 90s, following a Newfoundland family struggling on in a near abandoned fishing town where all the fish have gone, and the people have followed. So subtle and lovely. You cant help but root for all the main characters.

Right.... off to the library!

7 likes1 stack add
blurb
Kat_H
Gilead | Marilynne Robinson
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Well...this was an amazing way to spend a Saturday afternoon. Marilynne Robinson is one of my favourite authors and my heart feels very full. 🙂

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Kat_H
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Pickpick

I'd never heard of this book before but a couple of weeks back someone mentioned it and the next day Radio4 tweeted that they were broadcasting an adaptation. Clearly the universe was nudging me towards Shirley Jackson! A very suitable Halloween season read. Not scary, but dark and beautifully gothic. Brilliant characterisation too.

Jee_HookedOnBookz Loved this book! 14mo
8 likes1 comment
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Kat_H
Do Not Say We Have Nothing | Madeleine Thien
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Pickpick

Ok, this broke me a little. A rainy day here in the UK so I have spent several hours lost in this. What a heartbreaker, so moving and so beautifully written. I feel really lucky to have had a good streak of amazing reads recently but good grief, I need a lighter read next I think! Ps have you ever sent fanmail to an author?

Ye_Mighty_Andy_Spare I wrote a short email to Lily Brooks-Dalton after I read Good Morning, Midnight to say how much I enjoyed it, and received a very nice reply from her thanking me for getting in touch. I never know if there's an etiquette regarding contacting authors - i guess the more famous they are, the more of a nuisance and time-suck fan interaction becomes because of the sheer volume of it 1y
Kat_H @Ye_Mighty_Andy_Spare oh that one sounds a goodun, have added it to my TBR! Thank you! No, I have no idea either. I guess if they welcome fanmail they put their contact details out there and if they don't, they don't? 1y
Ye_Mighty_Andy_Spare Good point! Her website had a contact section. It's a beautifully written tale 1y
5 likes3 comments
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Kat_H
Metamorphica: Fiction | Zachary Mason
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Pickpick

Wow. A totally mesmerising, dream-like retelling of stories from Ovid' s Metamorphoses. So lyrical. It's like dipping your toe in to a world you can't even quite imagine. Well done Zachary Mason, I shall be reading more of you!

6 likes1 stack add
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Kat_H
The Overstory: A Novel | Richard Powers
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Pickpick

This blew me away. Felled me, in fact (tree pun intended). It's a slow start, but the layers of it grow in you and lodge themselves in your heart. Richard Powers' ambition, lyricism and message are powerful. This will stay with me a long while. If you liked Annie Proulx's Barkskins, this feels like a kindred spirit.

RaimeyGallant Lovely review! 1y
SamAnne Yes. 11mo
9 likes1 stack add2 comments
blurb
Kat_H
The Overstory: A Novel | Richard Powers
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Taking my time over this beaut of a novel. Richard Powers' way with words makes my little heart wobble.

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Kat_H
Dis Mem Ber | Joyce Carol Oates
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Pickpick

Getting an early Halloween mood on. 7 short stories that will leave you oh so unnerved... I love JCO's writing style, she really manages to convey so much personality with few words.

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Kat_H
The Book of Joan: A Novel | Lidia Yuknavitch
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Panpan

Blimey. This was punchy. A bleak, futuristic dystopia where humanity seems unsalvagable. I love the concept but the execution seemed overwrought and overblown from beginning to end.

Cover looks good with my cushions though 😂

Ye_Mighty_Andy_Spare All your reviews are super well-written. And please can I borrow the phrase "word hoover"? 1y
Kat_H @Ye_Mighty_Andy_Spare haha I think we're all word hoovers here! 1y
7 likes2 comments
review
Kat_H
We Were the Salt of the Sea | Roxanne Bouchard
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Mehso-so

Sad to be having a sticky run with books that haven't grabbed me! I don't know if it was the translation, or the fact that I read this on holiday, but I didn't get along with this as much as I would have liked. A bit of a crime novel, a bit of a slice of life from a remote fishing village...but the dialogue felt forced and the "mystery" fell a bit flat for me.

RaimeyGallant Good to know. 1y
CoffeeNBooks Welcome to Litsy! 🎉 1y
Lel2403 Welcome to Litsy 1y
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Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks Welcome to Litsy!! 1y
StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego Welcome to Litsy 📖💙 1y
Wife Welcome to Litsy!🌹 1y
10 likes6 comments
review
Kat_H
The Western Wind | Samantha Harvey
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Bailedbailed

A DNF. It was okay...well written in parts even. The author's descriptive language is beautiful. It just didn't grab my interest and it was a bit of a slog, not sure why. A man is dead, a village falls under suspicion, a priest is under pressure to investigate.... but just too slow for me I guess.

review
Kat_H
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Pickpick

A lot in this book resonated with me. After overcoming a fear of deep water and only learning to swim 2 years ago, it was my challenge in 2018 to swim in the sea. Well, I read this on the way down to the coast on my 2nd ever trip to go sea swimming! Really well written and funny, and made my journey to outdoor swimming feel less alone!

RaimeyGallant Congratulations on learning to swim. The book sounds interesting. And welcome to Litsy! #LitsyWelcomeWagon Some of us put together Litsy tips to help new Littens navigate the site. It's the link in my bio on my page in case you need it. Or if you prefer how-to videos, @chelleo put some together at the link in her bio. @LitsyWelcomeWagon 1y
Kat_H @RaimeyGallant thank you so much! Happy reading! X 1y
Eggs Welcome to Litsy 🌺😊👋🏻 1y
8 likes4 comments
review
Kat_H
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Mehso-so

Loved the premise of this: that there's a branch of Royal Mail that attempts to deliver post that has incorrect/missing addresses etc.

"They are all the culprits of missed birthdays, broken hearts, unheard confessions, pointless accusations, unpaid bills and unanswered prayers"

BUT the story isn't really about that. It's mainly about a disintegrating marriage (actually very keenly observed&well written).

? for the first 2/3 but weak ending

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Kat_H
Missing | Alison Moore
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Pickpick

I finished this book without quite knowing how I felt about it. Having said that, I read it in 2 sittings so I must have enjoyed it. Not a great deal happens, so small details of daily life are intricately catalogued and the bulk of the interest lies in the main character's memories. There is a great sense of detachment, as if even the protagonist were watching her own life from a distance.

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Kat_H
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Pickpick

I got 40 pages into this book before I realised I'd read it once already. Still enjoyable the second time round! A book about family curses, secrets, the circus, mysterious books and love.

7 likes1 stack add
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Kat_H
Reservoir 13 | Jon McGregor
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Pickpick

The scope of this is so ambitious, but Jon McGregor pulls it off to perfection. Don't expect your usual thriller/mystery about a missing girl - you will be disappointed. What it is, is infinitely more interesting and special.

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Kat_H
The Hoarder | Jess Kidd
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Pickpick

So. Good. Devoured this in 2.5 sittings. Love the story and the humour and the beautiful descriptive writing.

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Kat_H
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Pickpick

Fast paced, exciting read. Liked the main character and the location was full of atmosphere.

3 likes1 stack add
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Kat_H
A Murder to Die For | Stevyn Colgan
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Pickpick

Sometimes you just need a quick, fun, jolly read. And what's more fun and jolly than a good old murder?

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Kat_H
Never Anyone But You | Rupert Thomson
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Pickpick

This was beautifully written. Lyrical and touching. It made me want to know so much more about the Surrealist scene in europe. I can't wait to read more of Rupert Thomson's work.

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Kat_H
Warlight: A novel | Michael Ondaatje
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Panpan

Suspect I'll be in the minority here but I just did not like this. I wanted to, but it left me cold. I felt like there was a good story but poorly told...as if MO had chosen to pull on the dullest and most tedious threads of an intricate tapestry. The first half was flat, the second half picked up a little but not enough. I felt nothing towards the characters...perhaps there was too much tell and not enough show. The lack of dialogue didn't help.

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Kat_H
Florida | Lauren Groff
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Pickpick

Devoured this. Spectacular writing. Tender, exposing little vignettes of life. It's been a while since I read a collection of short stories and I'm so glad I did.

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Kat_H
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Mehso-so

I started off being really intrigued by the plot and world the author had created, but by the end I felt a little flat. I just kept expecting something more. It was strange how you were always kept at an arm's length from the protagonist... I didn't really mind it at first, the author was trying to create a myth-like sense of her, but there needed to be something more in her actions to fill that void. She was too passive in many ways.

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Kat_H
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Bailedbailed

Abandoned this at page 40. The writing was okay, to be honest, but neither the characters nor situation particularly grabbed me. Life is too short to stick with an ungrabby novel, don't you think?

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Kat_H
A Piece of the World | Christina Baker Kline
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Pickpick

I genuinely can't rave about this enough. Everything is so sparse and simple but all the more beautiful and powerful for it. Made my heart squeeze. An imagining of the life of Christina Olsen, of Andrew Wyeth's Christina's World.

5 likes1 stack add