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LadyCait84

LadyCait84

Joined December 2017

“And she's reading again. How novel.“
review
LadyCait84
This Time Next Year | Sophie Cousens
Pickpick

Not my usual genre, but an enjoyable first read for the year (selected for its New Year‘s Eve framework).

There‘s a sweet romance at the novel‘s core, but it‘s surrounded by self-discoveries and solid friendships and renewed familial affections…all of which offer love stories of their own.

38 likes1 stack add
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LadyCait84
84, Charing Cross Road | Helene Hanff
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Pickpick

What a delight for my last book of 2021!

Short and quick, it‘s a charming collection of real-life letters sent between an American writer and the British bookseller who tracked down old, out-of-print tomes for her over their 20-year friendship, which was sustained solely through letters and a shared love of books.

Leftcoastzen ❤️❤️❤️ 2w
suvata Wonderful book ♥️ 2w
59 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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LadyCait84
Luster: A Novel | Raven Leilani
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Mehso-so

Just finished this, the last book club read for 2021, and feel uncertain and conflicted. Leilani‘s style is often graphic and harsh, but also fluid and beautiful. The story itself, often painful. And I just kept wanting better for, and from, the characters.

Might take me a bit to determine if I liked it. And longer still to figure out if I understood it.

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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

The ideas at the center of this book are not new or surprising: Families are complicated; Disappointing those we love, and being disappointed by them, is inevitable. But Straub‘s characters pulled me along and made me care about their complicated family, their litany of disappointments…made me care about them, even as they exchange boneheaded mistakes and clumsy apologies.

Honestly, a pretty fitting read for Thanksgiving weekend?

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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

Told from alternating perspectives separated by centuries, this book uses history as its mystery — and demonstrated how studying past lives can illuminate revelations about our own.

I do have a few bones to pick with the modern protagonist — as a former history major myself, her choices at the end of the novel were incomprehensible and could not hold. Overall, though, I really enjoyed this one.

56 likes1 stack add
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LadyCait84
The Year of the Witching | Alexis Henderson
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Pickpick

Fitting seasonal read with a strong feminist core.

Its setting - in both time and place - is fictional, but pulls strongly from historic influence (17th century Salem, the Crusades) as well as classic dystopian stories (Handmaid‘s Tale, for example).

Those who like witchy things, and/or have felt the burn of righteous fury over patriarchal injustices, should pick this one up.

sleepy.ash87 I just placed it on hold through my library. Can't wait to start! 3mo
64 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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LadyCait84
Hurricane Season | Fernanda Melchor
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Mehso-so

This book is a horrific nightmare, just as it intends to be.

Melchor overpacks relentless violence into just 210 pages, forcing you to sit in discomfort with the ugliest realities human beings can create…and somehow endure.

I think it‘s an important work to exist. The author is fiercely talented, and honestly brave to write so unsparingly. But I struggle with the notion of “recommending” it to anyone, given how awful the book made me feel.

38 likes1 stack add
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LadyCait84
Hollow Kingdom | Kira Jane Buxton
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Pickpick

Clever and crude and absurdly comedic.

Narrated mostly by a foul-mouthed (but fiercely loyal and optimistic) domesticated crow, the book tells the story of a technology-induced zombie apocalypse from the perspective of pets. I laughed, I cried, I paused to ponder its social commentary.

Readers who are game for the outlandish premise (and are unfazed by colorful profanities) are in for a treat.

Ruthiella I have fond memories of ST! 4mo
LadyCait84 He was a very likable (if rather unlikely) hero! And Dennis forever! 4mo
64 likes1 stack add2 comments
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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

Much like its predecessor, The Henna Artist, this novel pulls vibrancy from both of its lush settings — India‘s bustling “Pink City” & a cooler, quieter village in the Himalayan foothills. Written to satisfy fan-demand for more Malik, it also explores topics of class & entitlement, limitless familial loyalty,the risks & rewards of integrity…while taking many beloved characters on an exciting journey, set 12 years after the close of the first book.

scottsunderg66 Hi friend I'm glad to meet you here.. well I'm new here and still trying my best to understand Litsy Lol 😂 but I'd want to be friends with you... Get back to me by respond hi to my Gmail.. scottsundberg56@gmail.com 5mo
scottsunderg66 What did you spend most of your time doing today? Are there any books you would recommend for me to read?.. 5mo
46 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

This month‘s #bookclub pick reminded me of The Wire…except with more heart and humor, thanks to a cast of deeply flawed but mostly still likable (or at least sympathetic) characters. Sportcoat is a mess, and life for everybody in the Cause is hard, but the love and friendship, the faith and cheese, they share throughout the story helps make it a tale as much about redemption as anything else.

Ruthiella I liked this book a lot too! Faith and cheese - spot on! 😂 5mo
69 likes1 comment
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LadyCait84
Eligible | Curtis Sittenfeld
Panpan

A 21st century retelling of Pride & Prejudice, I kept wondering if the author actually even liked the Austen classic she was modernizing? Many of her choices for bringing the Bennets into the present day did so at the expense of their characters. I also took issue with her writing style — bloated with superfluous, superficial details & the occasional SAT word. I only managed to finish by looking at it as bad fanfiction.

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LadyCait84
Lilac Girls: A Novel | Martha Hall Kelly
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Pickpick

It is tragic that the horrors of WWII are so expansive — in scope & scale — that even after studying the era in relative depth for my history degree & reading many historically inspired novels, I can still encounter new aspects to shock & repulse me. Yet the experiences of the Ravensbruck Rabbits did just that.

All the same, the book — fiction, with the added punch & power of being based largely on fact — is moving, fascinating, & worth a read.

melissajayne One of my favourite historical fiction novels! 5mo
Alwaysbeenaloverofbooks 💜💜💜 5mo
DrexEdit Hi @LadyCait84! Thanks for the follow! 😊 5mo
68 likes3 comments
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LadyCait84
How to Stop Time | Matt Haig
Pickpick

A delightful read that felt personally tailored to my interests (history! music! Shakespeare! Fitzgerald!) while telling the story of love(s) that span centuries. My first book by Haig, but I‘m now eager to read more of his work — especially The Midnight Library, which is already waiting on my shelf.

jewright I really liked The Midnight Library. 5mo
47 likes1 stack add1 comment
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LadyCait84
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Mehso-so

Despite a great premise — a family‘s vacation comes to a halt when the owners of their rental house show up unexpectedly, with news of an evolving crisis — I didn‘t like this book. I wanted the tension & movement to be about the underlying precariousness we all have to just ignore in order to live our lives. Instead, I got unlikeable characters & the implication that all people are inherently terrible underneath a thin layer of forced politeness.

BarbaraBB I felt the same. 6mo
52 likes1 comment
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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

Biblical allegory and allusions fit perfectly into this story of exodus — one brought on by nature‘s wrath and society‘s complacency in the face of our climate reality rather than by a pharaoh. Centered on a group of kids/teens who understand they‘ve inherited a time bomb in the form of a planet and must look out for themselves as disaster looms, there‘s plenty of rage and resignation, but also tiny beautiful specs of what might be called hope.

56 likes1 stack add
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LadyCait84
Night Swim, The | Megan Goldin
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Pickpick

Is shaping a story around a fictional True Crime podcast notably clever or just a gimmick to capitalize on a popular trend???

I say the former, as the premise enabled a revolving investigation of 2 crimes - 1 past, 1 present. The book is good, but DARK. Graphic at times. Deeply unsettling & enraging. It‘s impossible not to be repulsed, by the fictional crimes discussed & the real ones (some known, some not) on which they are based.

45 likes3 stack adds
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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

Did the audiobook on this one & genuinely felt like LISTENING to her divulge and lament and rant and profess so earnestly, so candidly, added several layers to the experience. Not to mention benefiting from her fabulous comedic timing.

While her topics ranged from things totally foreign to me (the “Real Housewives of... “ TV shows) to those painfully relatable (complicated relationship with food), it was all enjoyable and very often moving.

45 likes2 stack adds
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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

Though largely written with a crisp, matter-of-fact tone, the entire book vibrates with justifiable rage. It‘s more of a life overview than a story, & is intentionally written with sparse characterization (likely to make it easy for readers to see themselves in Jiyoung), so the minimalist style might not be for everyone. But the book is fierce in its trueness & as illuminating as it is infuriating. Ideal for those ready to rail against misogyny.

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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

Showing the vicious circumstances a family endures while trying to carve out a life in an Old West built of both history and myth, the story is one of heartache. Sometimes the poetry in the prose makes the specifics unclear, but the impact remains sharp as the characters wrangle with the ideas of home & land & self & inheritance.

54 likes1 stack add
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LadyCait84
The Starless Sea | Erin Morgenstern
Pickpick

Ms. Morgenstern‘s writing is always love & precisely my cup of tea. She does atmosphere better than damn near anybody, and this book was as stunningly and relentlessly immersive as The Night Circus...yet also so distinct that comparing them, even in favorable delight, feels unfair. This novel is a fairytale... & a towering puzzle with secret compartments... & a love letter to stories, & to all those who hold them sacred. ❤️

Catsandbooks I completely agree! I absolutely adore her writing!! 8mo
31 likes1 comment
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LadyCait84
The New Wilderness | Diane Cook
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Pickpick

Finished this one in a blur last weekend for book club, and I‘m still thinking about how terrifying it was. Beautifully written and distinct, despite fitting into the admittedly crowded genre of dystopian literature...but still harsh and hard and terrifying. I was left asking a lot of tough-if-not-impossible questions, of myself and of the world we all share. So, you know, I gave it five stars.

IuliaC Wonderful review! 9mo
batsy I found this a really compelling read, too. Nice review! 9mo
SamAnne Hoping to get to this in May. 9mo
49 likes4 stack adds3 comments
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LadyCait84
The Mercies | Kiran Millwood Hargrave
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Pickpick

This book is a throttling plunge into frozen seas at the edge of the world...and I loved it.

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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

I loved this, I loved Gifty. Her story of losses, past and present, moved me. But even more so, I found a comfort in her unanswerable questions, in her contemplations on the faulty magnificence of human-ness. Her journeys in and out of faith, felt like revelations.

KathyWheeler A lot of times when an author writes a well-regarded book like Homegoing, there‘s talk of a sophomore slump. That‘s not the case here. I think, if anything, Transcendent Kingdom is even better. 11mo
64 likes1 comment
blurb
LadyCait84
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I have been completely spoiled by my #bookcupid! Look at this abundance of things to savor and enjoy: several books and copious candies and other fun surprises! Thank you thank you thank you, @Bookbinger - you certainly made my Valentine‘s Day so very special!

@candority

candority Wow! That all looks fantastic! 😍👏 11mo
Bookbinger I‘m so glad you like it all!!!! I hope your Valentine‘s Day is amazing! 11mo
51 likes2 comments
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LadyCait84
There There: A novel | Tommy Orange
Pickpick

This one. Whoa. It is going to take time to unpack something so brilliantly and carefully layered: The expansive cast of characters, every one of whom — even those guilty of the worst, most costly choices — pull on your heart; the deep and varied wounds, both freshly made and long inherited; the remembered dramas and isolated struggles, building to and from shared traumas and violations. Ugh. I‘m rambling. But it‘s a must read. That‘s my point.

ErikasMindfulShelf I loved it too!! 11mo
SamAnne I really loved this one too. And the opening prologue... 11mo
45 likes1 stack add2 comments
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LadyCait84
Felix Ever After | Kacen Callender
Pickpick

Picked it up this morning for the #24in48 group read and barely put it down all day. Immersive and vibrant and messy and true.

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LadyCait84
Pickpick

A devastating portrait of both youthful longing and ageless intimacy.

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LadyCait84
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Something with a very exciting hashtag arrived today!!! I‘m very excited, @Bookbinger — thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Can‘t wait for the 14th!!!

(& thank you, @candority for setting up the fun!)

❤️🤍❤️🤍❤️🤍❤️🤍❤️🤍❤️🤍❤️🤍❤️🤍❤️

Bookbinger Thank God! I was getting worried!! I sent it out January 19th! I hope you like it! 11mo
candority Yay! 💕 Only 10 more days! 11mo
36 likes2 comments
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LadyCait84
The Henna Artist | Alka Joshi
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Pickpick

I always love a good story of female adaptability and resiliency in the face of unfair social constructs. The fact that this time it also happened to be set in one of the coolest places I‘ve ever been (Jaipur), just made it all the sweeter.

Crazeedi Good book!! 12mo
69 likes1 comment
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LadyCait84
Pickpick

Wow. I can‘t wait to discuss this one at book club tonight.

Such a nuanced exploration of identity, with race and gender and memory all playing their parts. It poses unanswerable questions about knowing one another, about knowing ourselves. Like, how much of who we are is set and revealed, and how much is chosen or created? How much is dependent on who others believe us to be?

Reviewsbylola Great choice for a book club! 12mo
48 likes1 comment
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LadyCait84
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All set up for a cozy Saturday.

sarahljensen I'm waiting for this from the library. It looks like it'll be fascinating 12mo
56 likes1 comment
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LadyCait84
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Prepping my #bookcupidswap goodies for shipment...I promise there‘s a book in there.
🤍❤️📖🤍❤️🤍📖🤍❤️🤍📖❤️🤍

#bookcupid @candority @CSeydel

candority Wow, so much chocolate! 🍫😍 12mo
CSeydel OMG 😍 12mo
38 likes2 comments
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LadyCait84
Spinning Silver | Naomi Novik
Pickpick

Well, that was fun & fantastical. And a very seasonally-appropriate winter read. I felt such fondness for the trio of strong young women at the book‘s center, and loved the magical aspects, but also was impressed by how well it brought in larger social and philosophical themes. I was a fan of Uprooted, and maybe liked this one even more.

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LadyCait84
A Burning: A novel | Megha Majumdar
Pickpick

My last book club read of 2020, and it was a doozy!

Such a fast read, and it felt like being swept up in a whirlwind of human failing and corruption and injustice, without a safe place to land.

Is it bad to say I enjoyed a book that also left me feeling disgusted and a tad hopeless?

CuriousG Not bad to say that at all. As morbid as it is, that is kind of my go-to book! 12mo
39 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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LadyCait84
Pickpick

This is the second of Jenny Colgan‘s books I‘ve read, another tale of a book-lover moving to Scotland for a much needed fresh start, then finding love & community along the way.

I enjoyed it, but it felt darker & heavier than its predecessor (The Bookshop on the Corner) — dealing with elements of poverty, neglect & mental illness. Which wasn‘t what I expected, having hoped for something easy & cozy & bookish to read through the holidays.

Caroline2 I agree. I don‘t think it quite needed those heavy subjects shoehorned in there either. 🤷‍♀️ it kinda ruined the cozy vibes for me. 12mo
37 likes1 comment
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LadyCait84
The Water Dancer: A Novel | Ta-Nehisi Coates
Pickpick

Fell behind in posting my last few completed reads of 2020...because I was busy eloping 👰🏻 and moving 🏡(all with extensive COVID precautions, of course). But this was one of my five star reads of the year, largely because it wove together true history and magic realism so well. There‘s also a lot of attention paid to slavery‘s emotional brutalities — like the horror of family separation — and the unhealable wounds that come from such evils.

Mollyanna Congratulations 🎉🎉🎉 12mo
Jas16 Congratulations! 🎉🥂💕 12mo
readordierachel Congratulations! 12mo
39 likes3 comments
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LadyCait84
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Just signed up for my very first Litsy swap & I am ready to spread some book-love this Valentine‘s Day! 😍❤️🥰 #bookcupid #bookcupidswap @candority

StillLookingForCarmenSanDiego Prepare to become addicted! Lol. They're so much fun. 12mo
candority Yay! Swaps are so much fun! Thanks for signing up and for sharing 💕 12mo
33 likes2 comments
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LadyCait84
Spinning Silver | Naomi Novik
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As a winter-lover, I want to crawl into this book and live in its forests, surrounded by snow and magic. Every time the Staryk is mentioned, I swoon a little.

Such a fun read to start the year.

💙❄️🤍❄️🤍❄️💙

51 likes2 stack adds
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LadyCait84
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Pickpick

I do not read a lot of true crime, so I can‘t speak to how this book will fare for enthusiasts of the genre. But I can say the book is a fascinating and complex display of investigative journalism, written with honesty and a poetic keenness. Can‘t wait to discuss it at book club tonight!

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LadyCait84
Pickpick

As a person who is largely horrified by “smart home” technology, Ware‘s use of an excessively automated abode to modernize and complicate the notion of a haunted house, is genius.

Also, I must give accolades for how well a few of the twists were set up - plenty of red flags to put a reader on high alert, but with details that only fully click after the reveal. Though, the twists less artfully handled are made weaker still by this comparison.

33 likes2 stack adds
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LadyCait84
The Turn of the Screw | Henry James
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Pickpick

I don‘t know exactly what I think happened in the end, but I do know I liked it. Painstakingly built psychological tension for the win! And now I am ready to binge The Haunting of Bly Manor on Netflix this weekend...

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LadyCait84
Mexican Gothic | Silvia Moreno-Garcia
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Pickpick

This book manages to both honor & play with the traditional elements of gothic horror, twisting tropes & adding bold strokes as needed to create something distinct. Moreno-Garcia‘s talent for vivid, atmospheric visuals — which I relished throughout Gods of Jade & Shadow — is on display here as well, dragging readers along through the decaying & mist-drenched estate, letting them share in the poetic bursts of possible madness.

Texreader Wow!! What a review!! 👏🏻 1y
readordierachel I'm reading this now! 1y
74 likes2 comments
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LadyCait84
Pickpick

A great read. Extremely detailed and full of fascinating characters (some fictional, some historical), it blended elements of a thriller and a period piece and a “rag-tag band of misfits” tale, all for a thoroughly enjoyable story. Particularly interesting for those curious about the earliest applications of psychological theory in criminal investigation/profiling. Like a late Victorian-era Mindhunter.

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LadyCait84
The Guest List | Lucy Foley
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Mehso-so

My first in the litany of thrillers and mysteries and gothic classics I have planned for the spooky season.

The setting was the best part of this one — distinct and atmospheric, and conveniently remote. But the plot relied too heavily on character-connecting threads that seemed rather farfetched by the end.

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LadyCait84
Queenie | Candice Carty-Williams
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Pickpick

Queenie — the character & the novel — exhausts and frustrates, just like a friend would — a friend you love but are powerless to keep from self-destructing. Reading it was often painful, as the protagonist navigates a history of trauma, a current heartbreak, and an endless barrage of racism and misogyny. But that just makes the reading feel all the more rooted in reality and absolutely necessary.

JennyM Great review - I‘m hoping to read it this month. 1y
Gissy I loved Queenie! ❤️❤️❤️ 1y
50 likes1 stack add2 comments
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LadyCait84
The Jane Austen Society | Natalie Jenner
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Pickpick

A story as quiet and quaint as the small village in which it is set, where Jane Austen once lived and finished her last three novels. While the book is really about the small group of devoted Austen fans who form the titular society in the years following WWII — their lives, traumas, loves, and victories — it is also full of tiny references to Austen‘s characters and personal history, which will delight any Austen-loving reader. #austenianaugust

robinb Loved this! 1y
45 likes1 comment
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LadyCait84
Northanger Abby | Jane Austen
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Pickpick

What fun this one was — the author‘s own enjoyment at her tongue-in-cheek narration is evident. Also, Henry Tilney is a charming word nerd and is now one of my favorite characters of Austen‘s creation. #austenianaugust

Ruthiella Your nail polish matches the cover!😻 1y
batsy Love everything about this picture 💜 1y
Lcsmcat I love that cover! 1y
sprainedbrain Hooray for #TeamHenry! 1y
CarolynM 😍 What a beautiful book! 1y
64 likes5 comments
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LadyCait84
Mansfield Park | Jane Austen
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Mehso-so

Definitely the weakest of Austen novels that I have read — with a lead character more strictly sympthetic than actually likable. While I can appreciate the aim of having a heroine triumph through decency rather than design, Fanny‘s “goodness” is too tied to a narrow and antiquated moral code to be anything other than problematic when examined by a modern reader. #austenianaugust

BiblioLitten This is my least favourite Austen novel. 1y
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LadyCait84
Persuasion | Jane Austen
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Pickpick

Anne Elliot, while much more serious and subdued than the more famously beloved Austenian leading ladies of Elizabeth and Emma, is still engaging in her own way, through steady tenderness and a generous nature. I thoroughly enjoyed her story, even if understanding why it‘s not held with the same popular regard as some other Austen novels. #austenianaugust

Sace That edition is beautiful 😍 1y
Lcsmcat I love Persuasion! 1y
bookandbedandtea Persuasion is my absolute favorite Austen! This is a lovely picture. 😊 1y
emz711 💝 😻 😍gorgeous! 😍 my favorit! 1y
54 likes4 comments
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LadyCait84
Well Met | Jen DeLuca
Mehso-so

Fun and light, but also a bit repetitive and tedious? The premise itself — of love found, somewhat begrudgingly, at a Renaissance Faire — is the best part.