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ThePageantHam
The Station Cat | Stephen Hogtun
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Pickpick

I saw this in a bookstore a little over a year ago and immediately requested that my library purchase it. It took them 6+ months to get it in, and then it took me several months to get to it, and boy am I glad I finally did. Beautiful illustrations and a sweet purrfect kitty friend. Plus, I'm a sucker for trains. Am I weeping from the ending of a children's book? Yes...mind your business. 😸

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ThePageantHam
Untitled | Unknown
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👀 🥯 🪨

This book isn't in the Litsy system yet, which is wild, so I suggested it. This one is too expensive and precious to me to lend out, at least in this universe, so I'm hoarding it like a lil dragon. It's A Vast, Pointless Gyration Of Radioactive Rocks And Gas In Which You Happen To Occur: A Trip Through The Multiverse by Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, and it sprung from my favorite film of last year, Everything Everywhere All At Once.

8 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
Aquicorn Cove | Katie O'Neill
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Pickpick

I didn't love this as much as the Tea Dragon Trilogy, but I'll gladly read anything Katie O'Neill puts out. The exploration of grief, as depicted on the page above, was stellar. O'Neill also focuses on the urgent need to restore the delicate balance in the relationship between humans and the rest of earth's creatures, especially marine life. And it's just so cute and beautiful, per usual. 🩷

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ThePageantHam
The Starless Sea | Erin Morgenstern
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I got a new job, and this is my gift to myself to celebrate ✨️
I feel like I spend so much time reading books that are just fine, books that don't light me up the way my favorite books--like the tagged Morgenstern gem--do, and I hope TBR can help me change that 📚

Bklover Congratulations on your new job! 👍❤️⭐️. Also, I must check out this TBR. 3w
6 likes1 comment
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ThePageantHam
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Books/stories I finished reading in November '22 📚

5 ⭐️: Merlin in the Library; Christmas Wish List; A Prayer for the Crown-Shy; the new Red, White & Royal Blue chapter from Henry's POV
4.5 ⭐️: Legends & Lattes; Cult Classic
4 ⭐️: Below Zero; Neuroqueer Heresies; A Cat Story
3 ⭐️: Cat + Gamer; The Cats of Ulthar

Happy December reading to all, and to all a good night ✨️

7 likes1 stack add
review
ThePageantHam
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Pickpick

Every review says how calming and stress-free this is, but I found it to be chock full of stress about losing everything financially, as well as threats--and a horrific act--of violence. It's not anywhere near too dark for me, but the discrepancy between expectations and reality was stark and disorienting, so I wanted to put out a review in case other highly sensitive folks with PTSD could use the warning. But I did like it--positives in comments!

ThePageantHam All of that said, this is a great book, and when I wasn't stressed out by it, I was in fact quite charmed, warmed, and calmed by it. Travis Baldree's writing and narration are excellent. I'm a sucker for found family, folks feeling empowered to reinvent themselves to live a life more aligned with their values and needs, and of course, coffee shops. 2mo
ThePageantHam There is a touch of sapphic romance here, and though it was less fleshed out than I expected/hoped, it was lovely all the same. There is a ratkin named Thimble who bakes wildly delicious cinnamon rolls and a dire-cat named Amity who behaves just like a housecat despite her much larger size, and that's just scratching the surface of the cast of characters I grew to love here. 2mo
10 likes2 comments
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ThePageantHam
Christmas Wish List | N. R. Walker
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Pickpick

I've listened to Tic-Tac-Mistletoe thrice at this point, so I was scared the sequel would disappoint, but this was a delight. However statistically unlikely it is that this tiny town in Montana would be crawling with gays, I would read 8 more queer romances set in this town straight (or gay 😅) out of Hallmark (but with queer folks, sex, and no Christian propaganda, yay!). Plus, it referenced the previous book's couple exactly the right amount. ❄️

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ThePageantHam
The Night Circus | Erin Morgenstern
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Erin Morgenstern's tarot deck has arrived!
🎪 🖤 ❤️ 🤍 🎪 🖤 ❤️ 🤍 🎪 🖤 ❤️ 🤍 🎪

Soubhiville 🖤 Oooooo. 3mo
kspenmoll I an guessing the illustrations on the cards are lovely. 3mo
22 likes2 comments
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ThePageantHam
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More queering and fewer cops ✨️

12 likes2 stack adds
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ThePageantHam
Red, White & Royal Blue | Casey McQuiston
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I finally took a proper look at the under-dust-jacket cover of the Deluxe Edition of Red, White, and Royal Blue and the artwork on the endpapers. I immediately burst into tears (one such tear pictured here). This book remains my favorite romance of all time and feels so pivotal in my own journey as a queer person and a reader. FEELINGS. I'm trying to work up the emotional energy to read the bonus chapter from Henry's perspective. I may perish. 💀

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ThePageantHam
Mexican Gothic | Silvia Moreno-Garcia
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Oct '22 - I didn't read many books this month, but there were no duds. Quality over quantity, I'm into it. 🙃

How to Keep House While Drowning - 5⭐️, neurodivergent-friendly, super helpful for self-compassion and protips
Mexican Gothic - 5⭐️, badass protagonist, great creepy atmosphere
Briarley - 4⭐️, sweet m/m Beauty & the Beast retelling, WWII, dragon
The Troubled Girls of Dragomir Academy - 4⭐️, predictable but fun, magic, fighting patriarchy

9 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
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6 likes1 stack add
review
ThePageantHam
Mexican Gothic | Silvia Moreno-Garcia
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Pickpick

PLEASE LOOK UP CONTENT WARNINGS!

I had hoped this would be a Gothic tale in the context of Mexican culture, but it's still very English. It does deal with colonialism though.

I rooted for Noemí from the start to the finish and would love to see this same character in a totally different story, from a totally different genre, hopefully having a much better time of it. Maybe a cozy mystery where she's a Miss-Fisher-esque private investigator? ✨️

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ThePageantHam
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A beautiful day to read about neurodiversity ✨️

review
ThePageantHam
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Pickpick

I highly recommend this to anyone struggling to keep up with all the never ending "care tasks" (Davis' preferred term for chores) in life, especially neurodivergent folks and those living with mental and/or physical health challenges. This book is helpful for reframing a lot of our thinking around care tasks and bringing in more self-compassion, and it also contains concrete tips for how to explore what strategies work best for each reader's life.

10 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
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Newly diagnosed with ADHD, seeking book recs that help folks understand and cope with a neurodivergent diagnosis, as well as determine how best we can manage the symptoms and challenges and unlock our unique gifts and passions so we can thrive. Books specific to women diagnosed with ADHD as adults are great, but more general ADHD or neurodivergence content is great too. Thanks in advance! ✨️

Smrloomis I don‘t have recommendations unfortunately but hope you find some good ones! 🤞🏽 3mo
ThePageantHam @Smrloomis thank you! Fortunately I got some solid recs outside of Litsy ✨️ 3mo
Smrloomis @ThePageantHam oh good! Glad to hear it! 3mo
6 likes1 stack add3 comments
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ThePageantHam
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Hank and John Green's annual week-long Pizzamas celebration is almost over, so if that's something you're into, check out the sweet merch while you can. The three oversized shirts I ordered for lounging and sleeping have arrived! To round things out, my other oversized shirt from Maggie McGill also arrived. Looking forward to some solid lounging with some good autumnal books while I crank the AC to pretend autumn exists in Texas. 🍂 📚

JamieArc Where did you get the thick thighs shirt??? 😍😍😍 4mo
ThePageantHam @JamieArc Their insta handle is maggiemcgill and the first option in the link in her bio is her merch! There's another one that's Thick Thighs & Spooky Vibes that I actually like even more and should have gotten 👻 4mo
8 likes1 stack add2 comments
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ThePageantHam
Sabrina & Corina: Stories | Kali Fajardo-Anstine
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Books finished in September 2022 📚 ✨️

Delia and Talia let me down with 3-star reads 🤷🏻‍♀️
Shapes of Native Nonfiction was great, 4 stars 👍🏻
Sabrina & Corina was ELITE, 5 stars, no notes 🏆

I read all of these in printed form, with the exception of Merry Inkmas, which I listened to during the tail end of my rough multi-day vertigo spell when I had my first case of The Rona 📖 🎧

Happy spooky month, everybody! 👻 🎃 🖤

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ThePageantHam
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Mehso-so

This book has an interesting concept and deals with some serious real-world issues, but the writing, especially dialogue, was meh. Cringeworthy self-monologuing involving, "Oh [other character's name], why did I [do a thing]?!" like a soap opera satire. It was way less triggering for me than I expected, but I was more detached than I usually am because of the bad writing. YMMV, so please check all the content warnings as there are MANY.

SamAnne Agree with your review. It did not do it for me. 4mo
ThePageantHam @SamAnne I'm relieved to not be alone in this since there's been so much hype from all over 😅 4mo
SamAnne @ThePageantHam unbelievable plot points—she learns to read and master biology and science in 3 months? And every POC character is a two-dimensional trope. 4mo
15 likes3 comments
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ThePageantHam
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Some spooky books that I may or may not read soon, who can say? 🎃 🖤 👻 🧡

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ThePageantHam
Sabrina & Corina: Stories | Kali Fajardo-Anstine
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Pickpick

One of the best short story collections I've ever read. None of the stories were duds. However, be warned: ALL of the stories were devastating in one way or another. Fajardo-Anstine explores abandonment, death, and grief; women feeling trapped in relationships, roles (especially motherhood), and poverty; domestic and other forms of violence; and the impacts of capitalism, gentrification, colonialism, and white supremacy. 📖

12 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
Smoke Signals | Meredith Katz
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I extended the Summer Splash Readathon for myself because deadlines are arbitrary and time is an illusion. 🙃
I managed to satisfy all the book prompts, which was my main goal. ✨️
The rest are activities like watch a beach movie; create an outfit, art, and playlist based on a book; writing a letter; random act of kindness; be your favorite character for a day; instagram challenge; and reading sprint. Maybe this month, maybe not 🤷🏻‍♀️ 🌊

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ThePageantHam
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Books I finished in August 2022 📚 ✨️
5 🌟: From the Mixed-Up Files of Basil E Frankweiler, I Am a Cat Barista, Wrapped Up in You, Always Only You, You Got Anything Stronger?, Strange Love
4 🌟: Playing the Palace, Davo, The Ghosts of Rose Hill, Recitatif
3 🌟: Dark and Shallow Lies, Witchlight

ravenlee The Konigsburg is one of my favorite books since childhood; it‘s one of my mom‘s too. She‘s been reading it with the grandkids over Skype the last three years, one kid at a time. 😍 - What‘s the Hibbert like? I haven‘t seen that one. 5mo
ThePageantHam @ravenlee yessss I had been putting off rereading it because I worried it wouldn't live up to my childhood memories as one of the books that most stuck with me, but it held up so well! I love the multigenerational appreciation of it in your family 😍 5mo
ThePageantHam @ravenlee I ended up really enjoying Wrapped Up in You! The female protagonist is badass but has been beaten down a bit by life, and the male protagonist is himbo-adjacent but thoughtful and interesting. I gave it 5 stars, then went on to read Merry Inkmas, which I barely gave 3 stars unfortunately. Can't win em all 😅 5mo
9 likes3 comments
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ThePageantHam
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Pickpick

This manga is such a delight. A cat who is a barista at a cafe that is Room-of-Requirement-esque in that it only shows up for those who are struggling and patrons are served exactly what the feline barista can sense they need?! YES PLEASE. I am impatient for my library to get Volume 2 in, as it's been on order for quite some time and I absolutely need more of this gem.

4 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
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Pickpick

This is one of the books I read as a child that has stuck with me the most, but I put off rereading this childhood favorite because I feared it wouldn't hold up. Turns out I had nothing to worry about; it's still wonderful. 😇

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ThePageantHam
Playing the Palace | Paul Rudnick
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed the characters, the humor, and the writing style. However, this book is too short, the pacing is off, and it doesn't give us nearly enough of the central couple actually bonding and falling for each other. This wasn't a book that made me feel all my feelings, and it's not going to be one that sticks with me, but it was a good time. If you're looking for a relatively light, quick escapism read, this may be worth checking out!

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ThePageantHam
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From "To The Man Who Gave Me Cancer" by Adrienne Keene ?

6 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
Wrapped Up in You | Talia Hibbert
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1. Zeitoun by Dave Eggers - Hurricane 🌀
2. Wrapped Up in You by Talia Hibbert - Blizzard 🌨
3. If I'm inside, snow or thunderstorms ❄️ ⛈️
If I'm outside, chilly but sunny and not too windy 🌬☀️

#SundayFunday from @ozma.of.oz ✨️

ozma.of.oz I love seeing multiple answers for 3! Thank you for sharing! 6mo
6 likes1 stack add1 comment
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ThePageantHam
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What are your favorite short story and/or essay collections? I'm quarantining and in need of recs ✨️

jlhammar I loved both of Ann Patchett's essay collections. I listened to This is the Story of a Happy Marriage (Patchett reads herself, great audiobook) and These Precious Days was a favorite of mine from last year. 5mo
jlhammar Jhumpa Lahiri is one of my favorite authors and I loved her debut collection 5mo
jlhammar I really loved this story collection 5mo
jlhammar And you can't really go wrong with Alice Munro 5mo
5 likes4 comments
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ThePageantHam
Cult Classic: A Novel | Sloane Crosley
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A strong start 🔥

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ThePageantHam
Strange Love | Ann Aguirre
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Why not do some random bookish This or That? I should be asleep, but I'm forever battling my nocturnal nature 🌌🦉
Currently reading Shapes of Native Nonfiction but should be reading Strange Love because I have a book club meeting to discuss it in 18 hours and am only 20% of the way through. I'm counting on the winning combination of hoopla audiobook and discounted Kindle ebook to get me through in time. 👽 🙏🏻

13 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
Silver in the Wood | Emily Tesh
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July and the official readathon may be over, but it's called the SUMMER Splash Readathon, it's still summer and still over 100 degrees every day, and I've still got plenty of prompts left that I'm excited about, so I'm just going to extend this for myself and see what I can get to this month. ☀️ 🌊

6 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
Smoke Signals | Meredith Katz
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Books I finished in July '22 📚

My favorites were Smoke Signals, Silver in the Wood, and The Cybernetic Tea Shop, but I liked everything except Are You My Mother? (Alison's Version) 🙃

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ThePageantHam
Playing the Palace | Paul Rudnick
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Honestly, that's what I want too, Carter Ogden. 🙏🏻

6 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
Smoke Signals | Meredith Katz
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Pickpick

Short and sweet m/m romance between Mike, a human working in customer service at an online gaming company, and Zali'thurg, a dragon who collects games for his hoard. It sounds a lot stranger than it ended up being. Their relationship begins in a professional capacity, then morphs into friendship and more as they navigate their cultural differences, boundaries and needs, and feelings for each other. 🐉

Soubhiville Ha! I was reading this review wondering if you‘d read it and thinking I‘d tag you, and then lo and behold see that you‘re the one who posted it! 🫶🏼👁👁 6mo
10 likes1 comment
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ThePageantHam
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Panpan

I don't love Bechdel's writing/drawing styles, and at the risk of sounding like her unsupportive mother, this often felt self-indulgent, pretentious, arbitrarily and confusingly organized, and boring. At one point Bechdel says to her mother, "Can't you be more universal by being specific?" and usually I agree, but Bechdel intellectualizes her experiences to the extent that there is little to no emotional resonance. Not my cup of tea ??‍♀️

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ThePageantHam
The Cybernetic Tea Shop | Meredith Katz
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Pickpick

First Summer Splash square down, Touch Grass (read one book entirely outside). I read this while just a lil overheated in a tree's shade, and it's so short and sweet. I could read a whole series about Clara, Sal (and Joanie!, a la "And Peggy!"), but this was also enough. I'm fascinated with stories about AI/robots and the ways in which their rights and treatment change over time, and this has a sweet sapphic romance to bring the mood back up.

12 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
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I'm a winter/autumn babe at heart, and I currently live in entirely the wrong part of the world, where the air is so hot I may combust. But I'm super excited about this summer splash readathon nonetheless!

Will I get all of these? Probably not.

Will I have fun along the way? I sure hope so!

Interested? https://instagram.com/summersplash2022?igshid=YmMyMTA2M2Y=

6 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
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Books I finished in June 2022 📚

Field Guide To The Haunted Forest was my favorite of the bunch.
Enchanted Night was weird and at times very clearly written by a white man in the 90s (🙄), but it was intriguing and will probably stick with me for a while.
Poems to Night and Honor Girl were good but unremarkable for me.
It Goes Like This, Elatsoe, and D'Vaugn and Kris Plan a Wedding were a bit disappointing.

7 likes1 stack add
review
ThePageantHam
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Pickpick

In a true story of sapphic love at a Christian summer camp, I thought everyone would be deeply, dangerously homophobic. Instead there was a mix of aggressive homophobia and accepting folks with microaggressions. I appreciate Maggie's struggles outside of queerness, as people are more than our traumas and sexual orientations. I really felt for Maggie, and all her obsession, angst, excitement, and heartbreak of young queer love. 👩🏼‍❤️‍👩🏽

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ThePageantHam
Everything for You | Chloe Liese
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This is promising 🎶

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ThePageantHam
Enchanted Night | Steven Millhauser
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Pickpick

A series of vignettes about characters in a Connecticut town that is having a strange, "enchanted night." A mannequin comes to life and connects with a human admirer, children are led by a pied piper figure, a gang of young women break into the home of an older woman who is so lonely she excitedly offers them lemonade. Not a favorite, but I think the eerie vibes and unique, lonely characters will stick with me for some time.

8 likes1 stack add
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ThePageantHam
Poems to Night | Rainer Maria Rilke
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Pickpick

I'm new to Rilke and this was a nice introduction. Some of it felt above my head, and all of it would likely benefit from a reread, but I'm glad I read it. It's not the ode to night I had hoped for, but the religious imagery didn't push me away as it often does. The Pushkin Press printed copy is aesthetically pleasing too.

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ThePageantHam
Red, White & Royal Blue | Casey McQuiston
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SQUEEEEEEEEEEE
My favorite romance
is becoming a
MOVIEEEEEEEEEE

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ThePageantHam
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⭐️⭐️⭐️: Nocturnal
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️: Iron Widow and Thirsty Mermaids
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️: The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and Love & Other Disasters

I read them all in physical book form except Iron Widow, which I listened to on 2.5 speed as is my way. 🎧

Pretty solid May of reading, let's see what June brings! ☀️

6 likes1 stack add
review
ThePageantHam
Nocturnal | Wilder Poetry
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Mehso-so

These poems are super simple and often trite, and this feels like Instagram wisdom/spirituality. However, somehow I kind of liked it anyway? I appreciate the art style, and it gave me more inspiration for future tattoos. The collection is brimming with nature imagery and the idea that breaking down can lead to something even better. It's not for everyone, and honestly I'm surprised it's kind of for me, but it's a nice little experience. 🌙

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ThePageantHam
Iron Widow | Xiran Jay Zhao
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Pickpick

This is a barbaric yawp of a novel. Our protagonist refreshingly skirts the line of hero and antihero, (justifiably) enraged and out for justice at any cost.
We've got an F/M/M poly relationship wherein the two men are as enamored with each other as they are with her.
On the downside, nothing is given enough time and space, and our protagonist having no women on her side in fighting patriarchy felt misogynistic and too "chosen one" tropey. ?

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ThePageantHam
Thirsty Mermaids | Kat Leyh
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Pickpick

Probably the prettiest acknowledgments page I've seen. 🌅

This was such a fun romp. An ode to friendship and found family, alcohol, chasing a good time, and accepting yourself and others as y'all are. The artwork and color palette are lovely, and everyone is a woman, a non-binary person, and/or queer, and some folks are merfolk too. 🧜🏻‍♀️

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ThePageantHam
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society | Annie Barrows, Mary Ann Shaffer
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I absolutely will not read all of these, but I'll do what I can/whatever I want to do in the moment 🙃
Also I am probably forgetting some/will probably add more as I go...we shall see where the wind takes me 🌬📚
May the Fourth Be With You today and all month long, in your reading and elsewhere! ✨️

lirahlu I LOVED Guernsey 😍 9mo
14 likes1 stack add1 comment
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ThePageantHam
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The six books I finished in April 2022, all 4-star reads!
4️⃣⭐️📚

4 likes1 stack add