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Meglet
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Mehso-so

Delightful premise, but the way Peter just so happened to be able to find the right people to talk to, coincidentally at home at the right time, or coincidentally at a meeting that was coincidentally held the next day, was a bit too much. And I saw the answers coming from a mile away, but the main characters of course gasped in shock when they learned the truth at the very end. Should have been good, but too eye roll-inducing.

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Meglet
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Pickpick

The images of old maps were beautiful and fascinating. The stories behind how the phantom places were “discovered” (and “undiscovered”) got to be repetitive by the end, but overall it was an enjoyable journey and interesting history lesson. (And yes, I used the same photo with different filters in my reviews for this and the other map book. I have no idea why I only took one picture before returning the books!)

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Meglet
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Panpan

This was a big disappointment. There were no real photographs, sketches, or reprints of old maps, just artistic renderings of the continent or region of the “lost city” with vague sketches of architecture. Some of the maps were inaccurate, and while some of the stories behind the cities were interesting, the book wasn‘t engaging as a whole. Not what I hoped for at all.

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Meglet
Pickpick

A very similar message to Out of the Ashes (Anthony Esolen), and reminiscent of The Abolition of Man (C S Lewis), but this one is more meandering in a “let‘s consider these ideas and mull over community prospects” way instead of directly confronting and proposing specifics. I think it‘s a good companion to those, but if I had to pick only one, it wouldn‘t be this one.

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Meglet
Pickpick

I found this charming and pleasantly emotional without being cheesy and sappily sentimental. I liked the tone that briskly moved through tragedy, acknowledging without wallowing. There were some lovely quotable bits about books and relationships and life. The middle slumped a little bit for me, but then it picked back up. Overall, a good read with a strong affection for books.

Addison_Reads I just finished this one too. Great review. ☺ 2mo
11 likes2 comments
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Meglet
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Pickpick

Mixed feelings about this one. It rates a pick because I‘m glad I read it and I recommend that you read it too. On the plus side, it did give good insight to how government aid and poverty play out in real life. But I was disappointed in how Land seemed to judge everyone except herself. She was blind to how some of her own choices were really foolish and damaging. And we‘re still left with the question, now what?

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Meglet
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Mehso-so

Meh. The title refers to the most interesting part of this book, which unfortunately wasn‘t a hugely significant part of the story. Most of the characters were self-absorbed. The chapters were jumpy. I read that the author had won awards for short stories, and that style seemed to explain the flow (or lack thereof). Another story that left me uninvested in the characters and plot. Alas. On to the next.

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Meglet
Big Little Lies | Liane Moriarty
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Pickpick

This was a lot more serious and intense than I expected it to be. Not on my radar at all, but my MIL handed it to me, so I read it and was delightfully surprised. I thought it was going to be frivolous and full of caricature and instead it was witty and thoughtful. Made me laugh out loud and sigh with sympathy and anguish. I‘m interested in what else this author has now!

Meglet Thanks, @Megabooks; I‘ve stacked it! 2mo
12 likes2 comments
blurb
Meglet
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There‘s a crumbling rarely used library in this book. Near the end, one of the characters asks the (lone, now volunteer) librarian why she stopped storytime. She said it was because she lost her assistant and there were too many other things to do. It made me think of our local library. A few years back, they installed electronic checkout stations. Now my kids can walk in, check in their old books, collect and check out an armful of new books, ⬇️

Meglet ...and walk out without ever interacting with a librarian. It‘s not that there aren‘t friendly librarians willing to respond to a query, but still...it makes me sad. 3mo
4 likes1 comment
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Meglet
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Pickpick

You want a love story to books? This is it. Or more accurately, a love story to stories. And libraries. And most of all, to hope. It makes me sad that it only ranks 53%. This story is beautiful. It‘s not sentimentally written. It has a happy ending. What‘s wrong with happy endings, people? After an awful lot of so-so books, I finally found one that made me happy.

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Meglet
Circe | Madeline Miller
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Pickpick

Not everything I wanted it to be, but I don‘t really know what I wanted it to be. It was well-told, and did help to lock in some mythology, which is part of what I hoped for. I found it a bit slow, and at times it seemed to go on forever. (Part of being immortal?) The ambiguous ending didn‘t bother me, because by then I was ambivalent about what happened to Circe. The audio narrator was PHENOMENAL though. Highly recommend that at least.

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Meglet
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Mehso-so

I must be in a bad reading slump. Everything lately has been so-so, and I‘ve read a lot of characters I‘ve been angry with or disappointed in. This one is good writing (if it can evoke strong emotions, it did a good job of immersing me!), but I felt let down in the end with how selfish I thought Miranda was. I hurt for the people in her life she treated unfairly. I wanted to see hope of change, of desire to be better, and I didn‘t.

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Meglet
The Kiss Quotient | Helen Hoang
Pickpick

Slow to review this one, but I really liked it. It‘s a fun, spicy, indulgent read that‘s still intelligent. LOVED how smart and capable Stella was, and the Pretty Woman vibe, and all the different characters. I highly recommend it.

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Meglet
Rebecca | Daphne Du Maurier, Dame
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Mehso-so

I couldn‘t stand the narrator for the first half of the book. Kept having to set the book down and walk away because I was sick of spending time with her and her “woe is me, I‘m so pitiful and inferior, wah wah” attitude. The second half bumped it from a pan to so-so. Definitely very atmospheric, and I did like Manderley. Mrs. Danvers was creepy, but I didn‘t hate her. Maybe because I get so immersed in books, it was too unpleasant for me.

8 likes1 stack add
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Meglet
Wide Sargasso Sea | Jean Ryhs
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Mehso-so

I guess as far as evoking a mood, this book was strong - nearly the entire story, the atmosphere felt suffocating, or like a drunken stupor. If that‘s what descent into madness is like, then that was effective. But in my opinion, the portrayal of Rochester was inaccurate, and most of the book I spent thinking, wait, what just happened? Why did that happen? Where did that come from? I understood very very little of any of the characters at the end.

5 likes1 stack add
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Meglet
Mehso-so

I listened to this on audio, and the narration was excellent, but the story was mediocre for me. It was entirely conversation and introspection. Excellent psychology and analysis, but I must prefer novels that tell a story via action and place (and interaction), rather than one that consists of discussion about a single event that happened at the beginning. I was bored and unengaged.

3 likes1 stack add
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Meglet
Arcadia: A novel | Iain Pears
Pickpick

Challenging read, and disappointing in parts, but I still go around recommending this. I began the hardback, then borrowed the audiobook and overlapped the two, which helped me keep the complex plot straight. The improvisational talents of all characters were unrealistic to me, though it made for some entertaining reading. Pears did an excellent job of developing place and characters - no small feat in this story!

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Meglet
What She Left Behind | Ellen Marie Wiseman
Pickpick

I actually stayed up late and finished this one - I was able to finish it in 2 days, which is rare for me. So it was a good balance of easy to read, fast-moving, and interesting enough to keep me engaged. I did think many of the schoolmates were one-dimensional and too conveniently used as plot devices instead of being interesting characters in their own right. Worth a read though, if the summary sounds interesting to you at all.

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Meglet
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Pickpick

This book was FUN. The culinary descriptions were utterly delightful, and the uniqueness of the story was engaging. The gore and violence was a touch outside of my comfort zone, but not too much for me. While I didn‘t agree with everything, it was thought-provoking and the characters were still appealing.

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Meglet
Mehso-so

While I could relate very strongly to feelings of rejection that she discusses, I found most of the book unhelpful, largely in the way of ‘I already knew that...easier said than done.‘ Oh well. I guess I should have known it wasn‘t going to be that easy to resolve this struggle.

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Meglet
Playing Catch-Up | A. B. Guthrie
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Totally co-opting the tagged book for my purpose of admitting that I tend to read in spurts and then post in spurts. I just posted reviews for books that I‘ve read over the past 6 months or so (or maybe even as far back as a year). 🤭 And that‘s not even all of them. I still have a handful on my tbr list that I‘ve finished reading. Anyone else have this trouble?

Centique Oh gosh, that‘s admirable! I never wrote any reviews until I discovered Litsy so that was MANY years of reading that I‘ve lost any record of 😳 Now I feel like I can‘t start the next book until I‘ve rated it on GR at least. 11mo
Meglet @Centique Well, that‘s one way of making sure you keep up! On my end, this is all Litsy-contained - I read books off my TBR list and then they stay on that list until I review them. I‘m not much of a social butterfly, even with Litsy, and so it goes. I have begun adding books to my “already read” list if I see ones mentioned in my feed that I recognize having read and remember at least some of the details. 11mo
Centique @Meglet that‘s a good tip to look out for already read 😊👍 11mo
5 likes3 comments
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Meglet
A Monster Calls | Patrick Ness, Siobhan Dowd
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This writing. ❤️💔😭

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Meglet
A Monster Calls | Patrick Ness, Siobhan Dowd
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Pickpick

So much of this book was so hauntingly and terrifyingly beautiful. I felt disappointed by the ending, and I‘m still trying to figure out why. Maybe it was too quiet and too...just...there...and maybe it was supposed to be. Maybe that‘s the point. But it wasn‘t what I expected or wanted. I think I need to read it again.

Tamra Loved it, in a despairing way. 11mo
6 likes1 comment
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Meglet
I Capture the Castle | Dodie Smith
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Pickpick

The book club discussion was necessary for me to understand and appreciate some of the characters and to rate this a full pick. Prior to that, I was thoroughly disgusted with the father. The characters were fantastically developed, I LOVED the house (castle), and the comparisons of American and English mannerisms, language, and other quirks were some of my favorite parts. This might be a movie worth seeking out.

Tamra I loved the novel and the movie was ok. 11mo
Meglet @Tamra, so the movie might not be worth seeking out if it proves troublesome? The movie never measures up to the book, does it? 11mo
Tamra @Meglet if you can watch it for free via streaming or library, go for it! I enjoyed the novel better, only because you can only fit so much in. 😏 I watched it streaming - but I can‘t recall the channel - Netflix, Hulu, Amazon. 11mo
6 likes3 comments
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Meglet
Bailedbailed

I really wanted to love this book. It sounded so great at the outset. But 100 or so pages in, I just didn‘t care. For all the fun the authors had putting it together, they did a poor job of writing an engaging story. I was still confused about who the characters were, what was going on, and why.

emz711 I agree but i went back to it and it was worth it 4mo
Meglet @emz711 thanks for that. The book should have been so great. It was beautiful to look at too! I‘ll have to try again sometime. 4mo
4 likes2 comments
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Meglet
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Pickpick

A.k.a. Haunt Me Still, the followup to The Shakespeare Secret (a.k.a. Interred With Their Bones) has more of the same glories and pitfalls as the first. The Shakespeare scholarship is still fascinating to me. The characters were better developed in this one, the mystery and adventure worse (or less present). Different enough to not feel like a copy of the first‘s plot, but more bizarre and “out there.”

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Meglet
Interred with Their Bones | Jennifer Lee Carrell
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Pickpick

I need something in between pick and so-so for this one. It was fun and intriguing, and I will even likely read it again since it was gifted to me and I found all the Shakespeare scholarship fascinating, but it fell short of being great. I think I just had too hard of a time understanding some characters‘ background and motivation and it felt like the author was trying too hard to insert action and adventure that at times didn‘t make sense.

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Meglet
The Four Loves | C. S. Lewis
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Pickpick

Lewis can get a bit boggy at times for me, when he‘s trying to logically untangle something challenging and complex, but The Four Loves is a beautiful read. It contains one of my favorite quotes (“The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell”) and the part on friendship love is fantastic. We really should talk about brotherly love more.

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Meglet
Pickpick

The epistolary format in this isn‘t my favorite. I think I enjoy atmospheric and setting descriptions, and feeling immersed in a place, more. Given that, the LORs were quite good at filling in most of those details. Yes, I‘ve worked in academia, and yes, this is good for many chuckles and winces. As cynical and dry as the professor is, it didn‘t get unbearable. Very well-balanced. Done quite well, but I won‘t return to it.

RaimeyGallant Nice review! 12mo
Meglet @RaimeyGallant Thank you! 11mo
6 likes2 comments
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Meglet
Love & Gelato | Jenna Evans Welch
Pickpick

I probably would have adored this in my YA days. Reading it as an older adult, it wasn‘t perfectly satisfying, but it was still enjoyable. The teen characters didn‘t annoy me and the adults weren‘t too dumbed down. The diary flashbacks explaining Lina‘s mom‘s story were weak, and the ending climax and resolution felt a bit forced. That said, it was a fun trip through Italy, and when I visit, I‘ll pretty much be a 16-year-old girl about it.

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Meglet
Lake House | Kate Morton
Pickpick

This is the kind of mystery I love. Fantastic setting and character descriptions - I felt immersed. I avoid suspense because I dislike gore and cruelty, so this, lacking both, satisfied me. Just the right level of mystery, suspense, and frustrating, disagreeable, but still empathetic characters for me. I will go back for more of Morton‘s work.

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Meglet
The Last Ember | Daniel Levin
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Pickpick

Fun read. Excellent pacing (hard to put down!) and the mystery / puzzle details mostly believable and follow-able. Some near-misses too convenient, some character actions confusing (come out of nowhere or change direction abruptly or missing good motivation). Revolves around Christian, Jewish, and Islamic history in Rome & Jerusalem. I was drooling over all the ancient archaeological sites. Enjoyed the ending, especially that of Mosè.

5 likes1 stack add
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Meglet
The Eyre Affair: A Novel | Jasper Fforde
Pickpick

I‘m one who usually hates inside jokes (and the winking and sniggering)...probably because they usually fly over my head. Somehow, this book managed to be enjoyable instead of making me feel flustered and embarrassed. It was still a bit over my head, but I felt if I stretched, I could grasp most of it. Couldn‘t quite wrap my mind around some of the sci-fi phenomena, but it was a job well done for making something like this palatable to me.

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Meglet
Book Scavenger | Jennifer Chambliss Bertman
Pickpick

Often I have no patience for “childish” antics or behavior in YA books that may be appropriate or true to character. In this book, I didn‘t get annoyed. I liked the plot and puzzle (and the idea of book scavenging!). Good pace, interesting puzzle, good balance of action and character development. Didn‘t like the treatment of a bullying character - too one-dimensional and the main characters thought it fine to return the meanness.

5 likes1 stack add
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Meglet
Pickpick

Listened to the audiobook and quite enjoyed the narrator, but found Flavia truly obnoxious in parts, especially at the beginning. I suppose I should appreciate that being true to character, but this is my biggest problem with books - if I can‘t empathize with the main character, I don‘t fully enjoy the book. I didn‘t fully dislike F, but I thought she needed taken down a few notches. P.S. What makes a mystery “cozy?”

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Meglet

Started this on audiobook and it wasn‘t engaging enough to hold my attention. Too drawn-out, I think, and just not exciting enough for audio. Will try in print before giving up on it.

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Meglet
Pickpick

I finished this several weeks ago and couldn‘t bring myself to finalize the end by reviewing. (See post re: book hangover.) I think “epic” is entirely appropriate here. I‘m now in the hold line for the audiobooks and movies. (It says something that as old as these books are, those lines are still 20+ long!) Harry, Ron, Hermione, I will be back soon. Thank you for such a wonderful adventure.

marianac.16 ITS IMPOSSIBLE TO REVIEW HARRY POTTER ITS SO FRICKIN GOOOODDDD 2y
9 likes1 comment
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Meglet
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Pickpick

I thoroughly enjoyed this one because it was so utterly unusual for a historical romance, in some great ways. Male lead not promiscuous? And is a reader who loves to throw out Shakespeare references? Addressing actual difficulties of a several-years-old marriage? Honest discussions of sex? The narrator‘s intonation irritated me at first, but once conversations got going, I thought her accents were great (and learned some correct pronunciations!).

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Meglet
Pickpick

I thought it was great. Blunt, and if you‘re not already at least leaning toward anti-culture and classical education, it will probably rub you the wrong way. I‘ve got a thing for beauty and truth and wisdom, and this book does too. As much as it disparages modern society, it‘s full of hope, which was my favorite part.

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Meglet
The Christmas List: A Novel | Richard Paul Evans

What are your recommendations for the best bookish presents (specific items that you love), or the best sources for bookish presents?

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Meglet
A Christmas Carol | Charles Dickens
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https://bleeckerstreetmedia.com/themanwhoinventedchristmas

I don‘t know what is with the flood of movies about books and authors, but I‘m not complaining. This looks worth venturing out to see.

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Meglet
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I‘ve had book hangovers before, but this is one of the worst. I was having a really hard time focusing on anything else while I read this one, so I allowed myself to consume it in 3 days so I could go back to being a responsible adult, but now I just want to go back and read it all over again. Yeah, I‘d say Harry‘s world really sucked me in.

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Meglet
Pickpick

It‘s a pick. I read this one so quickly, I never even got it on my currently reading list. I think I‘d still call 5 my favorite, but I‘m immensely enjoying the evolution of the story. I would say this is the only book in the series that ends in major cliffhanger style - while they‘ve all had some bits unresolved, this one really left me dangling.

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Meglet
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Pickpick

My book club debated whether it‘s too blatantly moralizing, but I think it‘s done so well that I don‘t mind. A lot of interesting facets to the book (education, justice versus mercy...) in addition to the main focus on racism. Great sympathetic and interesting characters and well-described settings add to the richness of the book.

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Meglet
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Pickpick

This one killed me. Real laughter, real tears, and so many times I was yelling at the characters for being dense or immature or foolish. At the beginning, I didn‘t enjoy it much because I was so frustrated with Harry and Sirius and Dumbledore, but the laughter and tears saved it. My favorite one so far.

Now I simultaneously need a huge break and need to read the next one RIGHT NOW.

8 likes1 stack add
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Meglet
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1. Gone With the Wind, I believe.
2. Straight to the point
3. All the ways. Cream & maple syrup. Milk & pumpkin syrup. Frozen blended w/peanut butter. Black if it's really good coffee.
4. Don't make me choose! Tazo Wild Sweet Orange is pretty good though.
5. Where there are no distractions or interruptions.
6. Always loved it.

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Meglet
Pickpick

These books are getting hefty! I'm still enjoying the series, and I'm getting really curious about Snape. Intense ending to this one. The series takes a noticeably darker turn here, but they don't keep getting darker and sadder, do they? It's been fun to talk about them with my son; I'm tickled it's something he and I both enjoy.

Cayuse These are great books, but be aware that the story matures along with the characters... whether that makes them “darker” or not is a function of personal taste. I always enjoyed how the story evolved, but no great conflict is ever resolved without cost. 2y
10 likes1 stack add1 comment
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Meglet
Anne of Green Gables | L. M. Montgomery
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1. A Facebook post from Wind City bookstore
2. Earlier than I can remember. Probably infancy, from being read to.
3. Anne of Green Gables. (Ask me later and my answer will be different!)
4. The Abolition of Man
5. Gardening and baking
6. The Great British Baking Show
7. Winnie the Pooh
8. Book club. Nothing hashtagged.
9. Nope. Library for me.
10. My parents, for reading to me and letting me read, and all the good authors I've read.

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Meglet
Charlotte's Web | E B White
This post contains spoilers
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Pickpick

A book that can make me cry over a spider is superbly written. I so dearly love juvenile literature that doesn't talk down or belittle its readers, but that is still simple and good. Both my 3-year-old and 10-year-old enjoyed it (as did I). Hearty pick!

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Meglet
Love, Lies and Spies | Cindy Anstey
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Mehso-so

Sweet and fun. Meandering at times, jumpy (lacking smooth transitions) at others. Many characters also could have been developed more. If you like light YA, you'll probably enjoy it. P.S. Keys have nothing to do with the story, other than the general association with spying. But it's a pretty cover!