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mklong

mklong

Joined September 2016

review
mklong
Orchestra of Minorities | Chigozie Obioma
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Mehso-so

This was a very frustrating read for me. I think I could have really liked it, and at times I did, it‘s just that I felt like my shoes kept getting stuck in the mud. It is slow, but not the kind that is quietly building tension or atmosphere, it‘s the kind where you feel stuck in details and are just dying for the story to get moving again. #BookerPrize Shortlist 6/6

review
mklong
Ducks, Newburyport | Lucy Ellmann
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Pickpick

Obviously, it would be impossible to sum up all 1000+ pages in a short review, so I won‘t try. I will say that it was more than a book to me, it was an experience, an immersive one that took over my thoughts during the months that I spent savoring it. I kind of can‘t believe it‘s over. #BookerPize Longlist 10/13, Shortlist 5/6

Redwritinghood Good job finishing that beast! I‘m putting off until last because I‘m really worried that I‘ll hate it. 2d
Samplergal I have it on my bedside table and I‘m worried I don‘t have the stamina. Glad you liked it. 2d
mklong @Redwritinghood @Samplergal It definitely takes some patience, but I‘m glad I made the time for it. 2d
batsy All of my pre-orders with this one from Book Depository kept getting cancelled 😭 But I finally managed to order a copy. I'm looking forward to it but also kind of nervous. I love your review! 2d
mklong @batsy I have such a love/hate relationship with Book Depository! Right now they are on my good side for shipping the new Phillip Pullman so quickly. I hope you get it soon 🦆🦆❤️❤️ 2d
40 likes5 comments
review
mklong
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Pickpick

This is Science writing at its best; conversational, nuanced, and never boring. I came in with basically no knowledge, I thought all bees lived in hives and made honey (which I‘m pretty sure I learned from Winnie the Pooh), yet still managed to come away with with a basic understanding of the ways in which bees affect the evolution of ecosystems and agricultural systems. Hanson convinces you without ever proselytizing.

catiewithac Stacked! 6d
Tamra Intriguing! 6d
GypsyKat This sounds awesome!🐝🐝🐝 6d
44 likes3 stack adds3 comments
review
mklong
Bunny: A Novel | Mona Awad
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Pickpick

I absolutely loved the first half of this novel, but the premise wore a bit thin for me as it went on. Still well worth a read for the wickedly subversive humor and for the undertone of loneliness and rejection that Awad deftly carries throughout to bring this wild plot down to earth.

50 likes1 stack add
review
mklong
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Mehso-so

Lalami is trying to do a lot here, frankly too much. Islamaphobia, undocumented immigration, treatment of veterans, parental expectation, work/life balance, opioid abuse, gun rights, racism etc... are all brought up over the course of the narrative, but because there are so many issues to explore, none can be examined in any meaningful way. I get that she is going for “this is America now” but what‘s the point if we‘re only skimming the surface?

lele1432 Good review! 2w
41 likes1 comment
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mklong
The Nickel Boys: A Novel | Colson Whitehead
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Pickpick

Oh this is great. A departure from Whitehead‘s usual style in that he leaves out his familiar elements of speculative fiction and just tells the story straight. There is no looking away here, it‘s only the cold reality of the Nickel Academy and the society in which it exists. Even so, Whitehead knows when to stop; when the stomach turning violence has had its effect and will only be met with numbness or incredulity if it is pushed further.

Redheadrambles I am so looking forward to this one 2w
erzascarletbookgasm Great review 👍 2w
mklong @Redheadrambles I‘m really looking forward to the discussion. So far, looks like it will include lots of gushing. 2w
51 likes3 stack adds4 comments
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mklong
American Spy: A Novel | Lauren Wilkinson
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Pickpick

Set during the Cold War while the US was engaging in troubling covert operations to stop the spread of Communism in West Africa. It‘s a spy thriller on its face, but that was the least interesting part to me. What engaged me the most was Marie‘s voice and perspective as a Black woman in white man‘s profession. The way she is cautious and plays along when she needs to, but never allows the people who underestimate and try to use her, to break her.

Riveted_Reader_Melissa Sounds really good! 3w
48 likes2 stack adds1 comment
review
mklong
Sleepless Nights | Elizabeth Hardwick
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Pickpick

I went in with some apprehension after seeing all the bails from other #NYRBBookClub members, and I can see why, but this wound up working for me. It‘s a life told in glancing vignettes about those who shared her life. @MerelyBookish made an apt comparison to Rachel Cusk‘s Outline, and much like that book, I can‘t articulate very well why I found it so affecting. For the sake of discussion, I will try to by Sunday.

vivastory Yes, I thought the comparison to Outline was spot on. I'm glad you liked it! 3w
merelybookish I'm glad that comparison worked for you! I think they are both experimenting with how to write a woman's life, and I find that so interesting! 3w
batsy I feel the same. I found it affecting too but can't quite put in words why (if only Hardwick could supply the words for me!) And note to self: read Rachel Cusk! 3w
See All 6 Comments
mklong Oooh please do @Batsy! I'd love to hear your thoughts on Cusk's Outline trilogy. 3w
mklong @vivastory and @merelybookish I'm glad at least a couple of us liked it. Book discussions aren't much fun when everyone is just dumping on it. I am busy Sunday afternoon, so won't be there right at 2 est, but I'll check in that evening. 3w
BarbaraBB I didn‘t like this book, however I do like Cusk... 🤷🏻‍♀️😘 2w
59 likes6 comments
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mklong
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Eep! My #BasicWitchSwap package arrived today! @Catsandbooks I can‘t wait to dive in, thank you so so much!! Now, off to hide the box from myself until Halloween...

sprainedbrain Yay! You have a looooong wait. 😂 4w
Meaw_catlady Ahhh that‘s so exciting!!! Why is it not Halloween yet!! 🎃👻🎃 4w
Catsandbooks Hooray! 🧡🖤 I just couldn't wait to send it! Sandy's smile is beautiful by the way! 😍 4w
See All 8 Comments
Leftcoastzen Cute!🐶 4w
JoScho Love this picture! 4w
LeahBergen Happy Sandy! 😆 4w
mklong @Catsandbooks I know the feeling! I‘m really excited to send yours too. Just waiting on a couple more pieces to be delivered. And Sandy says thanks! (edited) 4w
mklong @Leftcoastzen @JoScho @LeahBergen Thanks ladies! I love my happy girl! 4w
46 likes8 comments
review
mklong
Magic for Beginners | Kelly Link
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Pickpick

This was a re-read for book club and it hasn‘t lost any of its magic. Kelly Link somehow manages to create vivid, unexpected worlds yet still leave much to the reader‘s own imagination. I love her so much.

53 likes1 stack add
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mklong
The Master and Margarita | Mikhail Bulgakov
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sarahbarnes Love this book! And this cover! 4w
55 likes1 stack add1 comment
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mklong
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mklong
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#7Days7Covers #CoverCrush

Day 5

Don‘t wait to be tagged if you want to play, just jump right in!

Tanisha_A Oh wow! 😯 1mo
TrishB That‘s a lovely edition 💕 1mo
batsy That's fabulous. 4w
mklong @tanisha_A @TrishB @Batsy Thanks ladies! It has those Leonard Baskin sketches throughout the collection too. I stumbled on it years ago on trip to England and have treasured it since. 4w
53 likes1 stack add4 comments
review
mklong
Quichotte | Salman Rushdie
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed this. It doesn‘t reach Rushdie‘s highest highs (though not much else does either), but it‘s well above his lows. I‘d say if you like Rushdie, you will like this. If you don‘t, I don‘t think it will do much to change your mind. I was completely charmed by it though. #BookerPrize Longlist 9/13, Shortlist 4/6

64 likes3 stack adds
blurb
mklong
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#7days7covers #covercrush

Day 4

If you want to join in and haven‘t been tagged, consider yourself tagged!

Kalalalatja Love this cover! 1mo
LeahBergen This is a pretty one. 👍🏻 1mo
63 likes2 comments
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mklong
On the Road | Jack Kerouac
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#7Days7Covers #CoverCrush

Day 3

Want to play @Catsandbooks ? It‘s seven covers in seven days, with no explanation, and tag someone new to play each day 😊

Tanisha_A Ooh, i love this! 😍 1mo
merelybookish That is a great cover! 1mo
Leftcoastzen I have this copy too.Love it so much. 1mo
See All 8 Comments
LeahBergen Love it! 1mo
mrp27 Great cover! 1mo
batsy This is fab! 1mo
Catsandbooks Thanks for the tag! I'll join in the fun! 💖 great cover! 1mo
mklong @catsandbooks Yay! Can‘t wait to see what you pick! 1mo
61 likes1 stack add8 comments
review
mklong
The Testaments: A Novel | Margaret Atwood
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Pickpick

On its own, I liked this book. Did I like it as a sequel to The Handmaid‘s Tale? That‘s the part that I‘m not so sure about. It‘s a much broader view of Gilead, it‘s even seen from the outside, and told from different perspectives of power, and that all works for this story. My problem is that the lack of all of those things, and the confinement to Offred‘s perspective, were what I loved the most about The Handmaid‘s Tale.

BookwormM I am with you there the fact that Offred was an “every woman “ with no past or future was what made the original the work of genius that it was I feel you lose that with this book. That said it was still a 4⭐️ read for me 1mo
Gezemice Yep. This is a good book but not chilling like The Handmaid‘s Tale. I think because it is inspired by the fans qeustions so it is decidedly more popularistic and has the message that every tyranny ends. 1mo
46 likes2 stack adds2 comments
blurb
mklong
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#7Days7Covers #CoverCrush

Day 2

Has @Redwritinghood been tagged yet? Seven covers in seven days with no explanation and tag someone new everyday.

Redwritinghood Oh boy! I‘ll have to go digging in the stacks and see what I can find. 1mo
Leftcoastzen These Penguin Classics Deluxe editions!such fantastic artwork! 1mo
mklong @redwritinghood Looking forward to seeing what you come up with! 1mo
mklong @leftcoastzen Right? The back and spine are gorgeous too, it isn't just the front. 1mo
LeahBergen These editions are so well done. 👍🏻 1mo
44 likes5 comments
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mklong
Winnie the Pooh | A.A. Milne
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#7Days#7Covers #CoverCrush

Day 1

Want to play @merelybookish ? Seven covers in seven days with no explanation, and tag someone new every day.

Thanks for the tag @LeahBergen 😊

LeahBergen This is a beauty! 👌🏼 1mo
merelybookish Okay! Fun. And I can see why you love that Pooh cover! 😍 1mo
mklong @merelybookish Yay! Can‘t wait to see what you pick! 1mo
51 likes3 comments
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mklong
The Testaments: A Novel | Margaret Atwood
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New Margaret Atwood and a pumpkin spiced latte, now this is a good day off!

youneverarrived Perfect 💚 1mo
SamanthaMarie Yes!!! That sounds so perfect ♡ 1mo
55 likes2 comments
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mklong
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Aw what a sweet surprise in my mailbox this afternoon! Thank you so much @erzascarletbookgasm !! The tea and bookmark are perfect for starting a new book on a Friday night! ☕️📚

erzascarletbookgasm 🤗💕 1mo
46 likes1 comment
review
mklong
Girl, Woman, Other | Bernardine Evaristo
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Pickpick

A series of loosely connected stories of (mostly) Black, (mostly) immigrant (mostly) women in England. No one here has an easy life, but they all seem to have an innate sense of hope and an optimism that is refreshing. Is it possibly too optimistic at times? Sure. Did I enjoy every minute of it? I sure did. #BookerPrize 7/13

58 likes1 stack add
review
mklong
Lab Girl | Hope Jahren
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Mehso-so

This is a difficult book for me to review because I have a lot of respect for Hope Jahren, not only for her contributions to science but also for her willingness to be so vulnerable about professional, as well as, personal struggles. Unfortunately, botany and geochemistry just don‘t really interest me. This memoir is well written and is loved by many, I just don‘t think I‘m the right reader for it.

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mklong
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This is a great idea and I‘m sorry to be slow responding @Catsandbooks it‘s been a crazy week! #BasicWitchSwap

1. Earthy, clean scents like sage and sandlewood. Nothing that smells sweet or like food
2. Oh I‘m easy. I like most things that are bad for me!
3. I‘m more into historical witches, paganism, and folklore than the kind who fly on brooms
4. For sure it‘s cozying up with some classic horror movies

Catsandbooks No worries! 🧡🖤 2mo
38 likes1 comment
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mklong
Black Wings Has My Angel | Elliott Chaze
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And finally, Barry Gifford notes in his introduction that “nobody writes books like Black Wings Has My Angel anymore.“ Do you think that is true? If so, why not?

#NYRBBookClub

merelybookish I was struck by the class and regional aspects of the book. The depictions of harsh work places and differences between life in a small mountain town vs.a small Southern town. I could understand why Tim was suspicious of the status quo and how it doesn't work for a lot of people. I don't know if that's common in crime fiction but it feels absent from a lot of the literary fiction I read. 2mo
vivastory @merelybookish That isn't necessarily common in contemporary crime fiction, but it still shows up from time to time. I think that it feels more natural when it's addressed in crime fic than lit fic 2mo
Leftcoastzen I consider James Elroy to be similar.❤️ 2mo
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vivastory I feel like Chaze certainly has his heirs. Although he passed away several years ago I would point to Elmore Leonard as one. Great dialogue, memorable characters, similar plots. 2mo
youneverarrived I don‘t know. I don‘t read a lot of the genre to really say. Maybe contemporary novels would build more of a backstory of the characters into the story? 2mo
BarbaraBB I hardly ever read this kind of books. The noir aspect was pretty cliché I think but the dialogues and the relationship was really another league for me. 2mo
saresmoore For me, this story was a postage stamp for a particular time, place, & perspective. How much or little was elucidated on given topics was just as telling as the settings and descriptions. I think there are a handful of authors who are doing THAT really well, regardless of genre. Lauren Groff (in short stories), Kent Haruf (though not anymore 😥), Anthony Marra all give me that sparse and propulsive, super self-aware storytelling like Chaze. 2mo
mklong That is a great point @saresmoore that the style of storytelling is still very much around, even outside of crime fiction. The issues surrounding dissatisfaction with the status quo and our treatment of veterans certainly haven‘t gone anywhere either. 2mo
Reviewsbylola I think there are some recent books that are noir inspired (Tangerine and Sunburn spring to mind) but they‘re just not as successful imo. I personally think today‘s lifestyles and technologies just don‘t lend themselves to true noir. 🤷🏼‍♀️ 2mo
vivastory @Reviewsbylola That's something I have thought about. It always catches me off guard a bit when a contemporary novel is described as noir without any sort of modifier. Megan Abbott has been called domestic noir & Gillian Flynn could be called southern noir. Those descriptions make sense to me, to only call them noir really doesn't. 2mo
sisilia I don‘t read a lot of crime noir recently, but Chaze is definitely unique in his delivery. Thrilling, funny at times, and not gruesome. The last that I read was Bangkok 8 series by John Burdett. That‘s dark! 1mo
45 likes12 comments
blurb
mklong
Black Wings Has My Angel | Elliott Chaze
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Elliott Chaze was a WWII veteran. Why do you think he wrote Tim Sunblade as a fellow WWII veteran? How does it change your feeling or understanding of the character?

#NYRBBookClub

LeahBergen Hmm... well, I was immediately more sympathetic to Sunblade‘s “bad” choices when I discovered he was a POW. 2mo
mklong I agree @leahbergen. Not so far of course that it justifies his behavior, but Chaze wrote so well of how it would feel to be free after being locked up, as a POW and then in jail, that it helped understand Tim's motivations 2mo
vivastory He says that his motivations for the heist are because he was disillusioned with the life offered to returning veterans. At several points in the book he also seems to try to excuse his actions by the wound he received during the war. I was never completely convinced that his wound had made him more impulsive. I did find it interesting that once he had the money he was deeply dissatisfied. It was almost that it was more about the adventure & not 2mo
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vivastory the actual money itself that meant the most to him 2mo
mklong I agree @vivastory and I think it's pretty brilliant that Tim doesn't seem to know that it was always about the thrill of the heist and not the money until after the heist is over. 2mo
vivastory @mklong Yes. Definitely a brilliant move on Chaze's part! 2mo
youneverarrived @LeahBergen agree. I felt the same. 2mo
merelybookish @vivastory Yes, I liked that too, how the money becomes a burden to him. Tim seems like someone destined to be a kind of hometown hero, but he rejects it. Maybe because of the war but his Dad seems influential too. 2mo
mklong @vivastory @merelybookish What do you both think of Virginia‘s relationship with the money? She didn‘t seem to share Tim‘s dissatisfaction at first, but after the shoot out with the cops, she was overcome by the guilt of the crimes. Of course, that is after they lost most of the money. 2mo
saresmoore @merelybookish That‘s such a good point, and I think it‘s a common struggle among vets, even now. I‘ve been studying up on PTSD and the failures of our country to support our veterans, so this book almost read like a fascinating and revealing case study. 2mo
merelybookish @mklong I think Virginia is more comfortable with being rich. Although we never learn about her past, there is a sense that she grew with some kind of wealth. 2mo
merelybookish @mklong Also she literally bathes in the money! 😂 2mo
Rachel_nyc @LeahBergen Exactly how I felt. Not that it justifies his behavior but it does put it into perspective. 2mo
Leftcoastzen I am always fascinated with the returning WWII vet theme .Injuries and being a POW can have a major effect .I think many found it difficult or felt permanently broken,yet some seemed to focus on normalcy in the extreme,G.I bill , wife , kids ,beginning that man in the grey flannel suit stereotype image. 2mo
vivastory @mklong I don't think she felt as dissatisfied with the money as Tim was. I agree with @merelybookish that she seemed to be more comfortable with it. The bathing in the money scene has to be one of the strangest in all of noir fiction. 😂 2mo
Suet624 Oh, Virginia was a happy camper with that money, wasn't she??? :) 2mo
sisilia Well, Chaze could be toying about the idea of doing the heist himself 😅 Since he couldn‘t do it in real life, why not brought it alive in a novel? Just a wild thought 1mo
39 likes17 comments
blurb
mklong
Black Wings Has My Angel | Elliott Chaze
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Several critics have called this a cinematic novel. Do you agree?

#NYRBBookClub

youneverarrived As I was reading it I actually could imagine it working well on the big screen. It‘s got an old timey cinema feel to it, but I could see a modern version of it working too. Apparently there is a film but it‘s not that good. 2mo
Rachel_nyc Absolutely. As I was reading, I could practically see it playing out on screen. 2mo
merelybookish @youneverarrived Agree! I could picture the locales and the people. I could picture the security guard with his gum! Too bad about the movie. I was curious once I saw there was one! 2mo
See All 11 Comments
vivastory I agree with @youneverarrived I think both a version true to the time it's set & a contemporary version would work well. After I finished reading it I did some research & in 2012 there were plans for another be version with Tom Hiddleston & Anna Paquin. Barry Gifford wrote the screenplay. It was delayed due to Paquin's pregnancy & there were plans even a couple of years ago to go forward with it. 2mo
LeahBergen I totally agree. When I finished the book, I said to my husband, “You‘d like this; it reads just like a movie”. 2mo
mklong Did anyone manage to find the French film that Gifford talks about in the introduction? I know he said it's not great, but I'd still love to see it. I honestly can't believe that it isn't already a movie, it seems to lend itself so well to that format. Like @rachel_nyc I was picturing it on screen too, but it was always black and white. 2mo
saresmoore @LeahBergen So true! My husband would like it, too. @vivastory Listen, Hollywood, give me Tom Hiddleston as Tim Sunblade RIGHT NOW. 2mo
vivastory @saresmoore Have you ever watched the Hollow Crown series that Sam Mendes produced before the London Olympics? Tom Hiddleston as Henry V. 2mo
Reviewsbylola It def has a cinematic quality. I think a film adaption would have been amazing decades ago. It still could be good, but I think it would be missing something. 2mo
Suet624 The writing was so well done that I definitely felt I was experiencing it visually unlike other novels. I agree with @reviewsbylola that an adaptation today would be missing something. 2mo
sisilia Yes, it indeed felt like watching a movie. I cannot picture Tom Hiddleston & Anna Paquin in it, though. Somehow I had Josh Brolin & Elizabeth Olsen in mind 🤔 1mo
38 likes11 comments
blurb
mklong
Black Wings Has My Angel | Elliott Chaze
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While not a humorous book, Chaze uses humor throughout the novel. What do you think about the use of humor? Does it provide needed levity, break the atmosphere, etc..

#NYRBBookClub

youneverarrived The little bits of witty humour were perfect. It was a needed element to the book imo but wasn‘t over the top. 2mo
Rachel_nyc I definitely appreciated the humor and believe it did inject some needed levity throughout. 2mo
vivastory It definitely provided some necessary relief. I think it also prevented it from turning into a genre stereotype. The humor made it feel contemporary. I was reminded of Elmore Leonard & early Tarantino movies. 2mo
See All 15 Comments
LeahBergen I think a little humour in noir is always needed (at least for me. I love black humour 😆). 2mo
mklong @vivastory that's a great point that the humor lifted it above genre stereotypes. I think it also made the relationship between Tim and Virginia more compelling and complex. They weren't simply partners in a heist, the way they laughed together made me see that they had real feelings for each other. 2mo
vivastory @LeahBergen Same here 😄 2mo
vivastory @mklong That's a great point about their relationship! He really did use the humor as character development! 2mo
saresmoore @mklong That‘s a great point. I loved the humor—it made me feel like Chaze wasn‘t taking himself or the story too seriously and actually made the intense parts feel even more uncomfortable. 2mo
Leftcoastzen Sorry I wasn‘t active during discussion, stuff happens .I think his use of black humor was terrific.Balances out the intensity. 2mo
Reviewsbylola I agree with @leftcoastzen. I found the humor in this book very typical of noir. Thoughtful but dark. 2mo
emilyhaldi That humor is partly what help distinguished this book from a purely journalistic true crime read. It certainly increased my empathy for Tim! 2mo
Suet624 I wouldn't have liked this book as much as I did without the added humor. It would have been a bit too flat and dry for me. 2mo
vivastory @Suet624 The humor definitely added some depth to the story & the characters 2mo
vivastory @emilyhaldi I agree about it made him more empathetic 2mo
sisilia I loved the added humor. It‘s be pretty dry without it. He balanced everything pretty well 👍🏻 1mo
35 likes15 comments
blurb
mklong
Black Wings Has My Angel | Elliott Chaze
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Hello @vivastory and the rest of our #NYRBBookClub friends! It's time to get our discussion going.

Chaze's style was influenced by Hemingway and James Cain. Cain and Hemingway were also journalists. Do you think this had an impact on the novel?

#NYRBBookClub

youneverarrived It didn‘t have a journalistic style as such but you can definitely see the influence of journalism e.g snappy, to the point sentences. I love writing like that. It works really well for this type of novel. 2mo
vivastory @youneverarrived Snappy is a great way to describe it. There were parts I noticed an influence from work as a journalist. The planning of & execution of the heist had a very documentary matter of fact approach that you would see in a work of long-form journalism. 2mo
LeahBergen @vivastory Now that you mention it, it DID have a documentary feel in those parts. Almost what we see in recent “true crime”. 2mo
See All 14 Comments
mklong I agree that snappy is a great way to put it @youneverarrived. I could also see the influence of his journalism career in his ability to choose such specific details that would add so much to the scene with only a few words. 2mo
youneverarrived That‘s a good point @vivastory I never thought of it like that but it was told and planned out in a very matter of fact way. 2mo
merelybookish I also appreciated how the plot was structured. I liked how each chapter/section started with some kind of backward reflection by Tim, and then what happened was filled in. We know he ends up back in jail but the how/why are filled in. 2mo
saresmoore I can see the journalistic influence in how the supporting characters were intentionally placed in time & space, giving context to the events. Every scene was described like a crime scene and every character was a potential perp or a witness or both. 2mo
BarbaraBB Thanks @mklong @vivastory for the great questions and the lively discussion. It was Saturday night here and we were bbq‘ing with friends and though I could take a peek at the comments sometimes I wasn‘t able to join unfortunately. 2mo
Reviewsbylola Omg, I instantly saw the Cain connection! This validates it for me. I absolutely hate Hemingway tho so maybe that‘s why this one didn‘t rise to the level of Cain‘s books for me. 2mo
emilyhaldi Sorry I‘m late to the party! But yes, this did read like James Cain and like true crime! @vivastory @LeahBergen no wonder I liked it so much... I don't have patience for modern thrillers that tend to be filled with superfluous details and dialogue. I think it was impressive how Chaze was still able to insert Tim's sentiments in a way that added to the suspense and didnt detract from that "true crime" or journalistic feeling. 2mo
Suet624 @vivastory @mklong First, let me just say that I am religious about reading each month's selection and I am also apparently religious about missing these questions. Off on a boat on the Connecticut River this time. Please know how much I appreciate this group and the books I'm reading. My lack of response in no way expresses my intense level of interest.
2mo
Suet624 I've never read James Cain but now I think I should. I loved the hints along the way of upcoming events and, now that you mention it, did have a very journalistic feel.
2mo
vivastory @Suet624 No worries. Things come up! I've only read one James Cain & it was a small book, but definitely a powerful one 2mo
Suet624 @vivastory Oh! That's James Cain. Of course! Such classic stories. 2mo
35 likes14 comments
review
mklong
Black Wings Has My Angel | Elliott Chaze
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Pickpick

I really enjoyed this one! Looking forward to discussing this with the #NYRBBookClub on Saturday.

Checking out all of our pictures through the hashtag, I think this might be turning into the #NYRBBookAndWineClub!

vivastory I think you're right 🍷📚🍷📚 2mo
BarbaraBB The kind of books we‘ve read so far all needed some alcohol to digest 😀 2mo
LeahBergen I‘m down with the new hashtag. 😆😆 2mo
55 likes3 comments
review
mklong
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Panpan

I hated pretty much everyone in this novel, which is not a great starting point. Choi seemed to be trying to make this much more than teenage melodrama, but for me, it didn‘t get there. The narrative tricks she uses in an attempt to elevate it, feel like tricks and as such, fell flat for me.

KristenDuck Thanks for being honest! 2mo
merelybookish I'm so curious about this book! It has rave reviews but so many people hate it. I guess I need to read it for myself. 2mo
mklong @merelybookish I would be interested to hear what you think. There seems to be no in between on this one. 2mo
Megabooks Totally agree! 2mo
Redwritinghood Yup! Totally agree. This one didn‘t appeal to me either. 2mo
43 likes5 comments
review
mklong
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Mehso-so

I found this enjoyable if a bit uneven. Shafak draws some unique, engaging characters, but unfortunately gives them stilted dialog and very little to do. Likewise, her description of Istanbul “a city where everything was constantly shifting and dissolving” is magnificent, but the story itself doesn‘t have the depth to match the setting. It‘s as though she had the set, but show left me wanting. #BookerPrize2019

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mklong
Black Wings Has My Angel | Elliott Chaze
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Hey there #NYRBBookClub! I hope you are all enjoying this month‘s selection and will be able to join @vivastory and me for the discussion on Saturday 8/24, at 2 pm, eastern time.

MicheleinPhilly Thanks for the reminder! 2mo
Leftcoastzen Need to get reading it! love the discussions. 2mo
vivastory 👏👏 2mo
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saresmoore I am so determined to be present for this one! 2mo
sisilia 🙌🏻 2mo
GatheringBooks enjoy the discussion, everyone! 🧚🏼‍♀️😘📚 2mo
Reviewsbylola Guess I better get to this one! 😆 2mo
Rachel_nyc I just finished and really liked it. Looking forward to the discussion! 2mo
BarbaraBB I am almost finished and looking forward to our discussion! 2mo
emilyhaldi Going to start this tomorrow 👍🏻 2mo
erzascarletbookgasm Not in the nyrb club but my copy (a different edition) just arrived. I may read it soon 🙂 2mo
batsy I should get started 😁 2mo
Liz_M It was a slower novel than I expected, but quite enjoyable. Unfortunately, I think I am going to be traveling during the discussion time. 😢 2mo
53 likes13 comments
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mklong
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Pickpick

Roach brings her inimitable informative irreverence into outer space this time. More specifically, to the details, and often indignities, of humans in space. Ever wondered if astronauts get motion sick, have sex in space, or are ever jealous of monkeys? Mary Roach did, and found some very serious people to answer her questions. Her questions are often hilarious, but they are never irrelevant.

Crazeedi Shes hilarious 2mo
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mklong
Underland: A Deep Time Journey | Robert Macfarlane
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Pickpick

MacFarlane lets us tag along as he explores the vast world beneath our feet (the catacombs of France, ancient cemeteries, mines where dark matter is studied, Bronze age Norwegian cave art, etc..) complete with the many engaging characters who inhabit and explore this world. His enthusiasm for the beauty of these parts of the earth, that so few of us will ever see, makes this a real pleasure.

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mklong
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Pickpick

A deeply personal, emotional, and beautiful debut. Told with honesty and brutality, but also full of love, forgiveness, and understanding. In addition to the coming of age narrative, Voung also offers a meditation on the limitations of language and communication. At times, the language comes across more as striving to be beautifully poignant than actually so, but that is a minor quibble when so much of the prose is, well, gorgeous.

merelybookish Great review! I am waiting for my hold to come in. 2mo
mklong @merelybookish Thank you! Looking forward to your thoughts on this one 2mo
batsy Lovely review ❤️ 2mo
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mklong
The Wall | John Lanchester
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Panpan

Everything about this, setting, plot, characterizations, even the message the author seems to be putting across, is all just too simple. There is no complexity in any of it to dig into. And yet, the plot points are still over explained. To the point that even the most crucial events, that should be exciting, lose all impact. I think I'm starting to hear a "how did this make the Booker long list?" echo.

Booker 5/13

Redheadrambles @mklong oh boy - I keep moving this further down my bookshelf and I brought it in like March ! 2mo
mklong @Redheadrambles I‘m very glad that I got this one from the library! 2mo
BarbaraBB @mklong @Redheadrambles I liked it a lot but now I read your review and do agree with most of what you say! 2mo
emilyhaldi Yes!!! I'm in complete agreement with you! 2mo
mklong @emilyhaldi I loved your review too! 2mo
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mklong
Chess Story | Stefan Zweig
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Pickpick

I‘ll save most of my thoughts on this one for our #NYRBBookClub discussion tomorrow, but for now I‘ll say that I can‘t believe how riveted I was by a chess match! Thanks for such a great nomination @sprainedbrain !!

sprainedbrain Glad you liked it! I‘m looking forward to the discussion tomorrow. 😃 3mo
vivastory Looking forward to the discussion! 3mo
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mklong
Immortality | Milan Kundera
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Mehso-so

An interesting concept in which Kundera inserts himself, and his writing process, into the novel. I'm usually on board for experimental form, but this one left me a bit cold. It felt more like a writing exercise than a novel to me.

Redheadrambles Awwww cute ! 3mo
tammysue ❤️ 3mo
wanderinglynn What a cutie! ❤️🐶 3mo
erzascarletbookgasm Bummer but your book model is cute 🥰🐾 3mo
mreads 🐕❤ 3mo
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mklong
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Pickpick

An examination of psychedelic drugs, both their history and their future. Despite promising early research, poor scientific practices and misuse of the drugs ended any serious study of them for many years. Now they are back and being studied in palliative care and as treatment for addiction and depression. This subject seems a bit of a departure for Pollan, but his engaging writing and immersive research are still on show.

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mklong
Frankissstein: A Love Story | Jeanette Winterson
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Pickpick

What fun! This book is really about the future of the human soul, but it is so much fun that it is never weighed down by the deep philosophical questions that it raises.

ClairesReads Can‘t wait to read this one 3mo
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mklong
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Great idea @Cinfhen and thanks for the tag @Redwritinghood Here are my #Top6Reads so far this year. If I had to choose only one, it would be Lanny. It‘s the kind of book that reminds why I love to read.

I‘ll tag my recent swap buddies @Hoopiefoot and @erzascarletbookgasm

Cinfhen Lanny and Say Nothing are both moving up my list!!! Thanks so much for sharing ❤️ 3mo
MicheleinPhilly This hashtag is making my TBR EXPLODE. Thanks a lot, Cindy! 😒 @Cinfhen 😉😘 3mo
erzascarletbookgasm Thanks for the tag! I‘ve posted my favourite reads too. I‘m so happy you gotten me Lanny and Spring in the swap. 😘 3mo
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sarahbarnes The Master and Margarita is one of my all-time favorites! 3mo
Cinfhen I know @MicheleinPhilly it‘s RIDICULOUS 3mo
Redwritinghood I‘m reading “Say Nothing” right now and it‘s pretty good too. 3mo
Redheadrambles How did I miss this ! I am so bad at Litsy, great choices - I am looking forward to Lanny 3mo
mklong @redheadrambles I hope you love it as much as I did. I read it all in one go on a lazy Sunday, and I think that's the right way to do it. I was completely transported. 3mo
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mklong
A High Wind in Jamaica | Richard Hughes
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Alright @vivastory and the rest of our #NYRBBookClub friends, it‘s time to vote for our August pick. Looks like I‘m taking us to a pretty dark place, wonder what that says about me 🤔

1. Sand, Wolfgang Herrndorf
2. A High Wind in Jamaica, Richard Hughes
3. Black Wings Has My Angel, Elliott Chaze

Vote in the comments! And please tag anyone I may have forgotten.

Leftcoastzen Black Wings has my Angel 3mo
Rachel_nyc Sand 3mo
Samplergal A High Wind in Jamaica. 3mo
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GatheringBooks thanks for this! these all look like great picks. i won‘t be able to join this round unfortunately, can only read female authors this year for our #womenreadwomen2019 theme. have fun, everyone! 3mo
sisilia I vote for Black Wings Has My Angel. Thanks @mklong ☺️ All three have been in my wishlist 3mo
Suet624 Well! These are all quite different from our past choices, aren‘t they??? 😂😂 I think I‘m leaning toward Black Wings! 3mo
sprainedbrain Black Wings! 3mo
sisilia Fun fact: A High Wind in Jamaica is the first book published by NYRB Classics (edited) 3mo
batsy These are such varied, interesting choices! I'm going with A High Wind in Jamaica because I have it & it's been TBR forever 🙂 3mo
LeahBergen Great picks! I‘m voting for A High Wind in Jamaica. 👏🏻👏🏻 3mo
mklong @sisilia I didn‘t know that, that is so neat! 3mo
saresmoore Wow, great picks! My vote is for 3mo
vivastory Terrific picks!! I'm going with 3mo
Theaelizabet Wow! All of them sound great. I‘m voting for A High Wind in Jamaica. 3mo
BarbaraBB Great choices, all are completely new to me. I‘d be happy with all of them but my vote is for 3mo
BarbaraBB @GatheringBooks Sorry you won‘t join us for this one, cool theme though! #womenreadwomen2019 3mo
Liz_M I vote for Black Wings 3mo
emilyhaldi I vote Black wings!!! Love this diverse mix 🖤 (I have already read and LOVED High Wind in Jamaica, otherwise that would have gotten my vote 🙃) 3mo
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mklong
Appointment | Herta Mller
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Pickpick

This is a difficult one to describe. On its face, it‘s a woman on her way to a sinister appointment who is reminiscing on everything that brought her to this point. It is filled with absurdity, banality, humor (both dark and silly), and even love, but it is the, ever present, undercurrent of sadness and rage, that you know can pull you under at any point (and often does so sharply) that makes is so powerful and unforgettable.

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mklong
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Pickpick

A fascinating look at the life of Carol Ruckdeschel, a relentlessly passionate advocate for wilderness preservation, who certainly hasn't led a boring life. It also covers the history of wilderness preservation generally and the history of Cumberland Island specifically. This is Ruckdeschel's story, so while there is an argument that the other side of the debate isn‘t as well represented, who needs them when you have Carol to steal the show?

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mklong
Summer Santa | Ward Maia
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Oh my gosh, @Hoopiefoot I love everything!! I can be tricky to pick books for, but you nailed it. These all look right in my lane! The tote and bookmarks are adorable and I‘ll enjoy that chocolate with a glass of wine tonight! Thank you so, so much for your kindness and generosity, you‘re right, Litsy really is the best!

And huge thank you to @BookishMarginalia for putting together this wonderful #SummerSantaGoesPostal swap!!

Hoopiefoot 😊 Enjoy! I cringed a little when I saw you review Furious Hours a few days ago—hopefully you don‘t mind having a hard copy of it now too! 4mo
squirrelbrain Love that tote - so cute! 🦔 4mo
batsy That's an adorable tote 💜 4mo
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mklong @hoopiefoot, I‘m so happy to have a hard copy of it! Now I can let friends borrow it. Thank you again, and I hope you get a great package too! 4mo
mklong @squirrelbrain @batsy I love it! It‘s already full of stuff to take to work with me 4mo
erzascarletbookgasm Lovely gifts! The tote is so cute! 💗 4mo
LeahBergen Ooo, Furious Hours! 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 4mo
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mklong
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Congratulations to Joy Harjo! Tracy K. Smith had an excellent tenure but her time is up. I‘m off to check out some of Harjo‘s poetry now. Let me know if anyone has advice about where to start.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/19/books/joy-harjo-poet-laureate.html?smid=nytco...

erzascarletbookgasm Must investigate 🙂 4mo
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mklong
Daisy Jones and The Six | Taylor Jenkins Reid
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Pickpick

I took everyone‘s advice and listened to the audiobook for this one and I am glad that I did. The full cast is excellent and definitely kept me entertained. As for the book itself? It‘s fine, I guess. I was expecting it to go to much darker, rougher places than it did, so it all felt a little too safe. Still a perfect vacation read though.

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mklong
Celestial Bodies | Johka Alharthi
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Mehso-so

I always get excited to read an author from a part of the world that I am not so familiar with. I love reading a point of view that I‘ve never seen before, so I really thought I would love this. The concept is great, but there are just too many characters and timelines here. I can see that Alharthi is intending it all to read as rich and complex, but for me it came off more muddled and confused.

Redwritinghood Oh no! I have a copy I still plan to read, though. 4mo
mklong @Redwritinghood I hope you like it more than I did! 4mo
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mklong
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Pickpick

The first half of this lays out the story of Rev. Maxwell, a suspected serial killer in 1970's Alabama, without much style or fanfare. This choice makes more sense in the second half where she explores Harper Lee's investigation and decision not to publish a book about the case. If Cep had tried to write about the case with any kind of flair, it would be hard for a reader not to compare her choices with what could have been if Lee had written it.

ClairesReads Looking forward to this one 4mo
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