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ontheBL

ontheBL

Joined January 2017

Wandering bibliomaniac. Literary lifestyle. Polyglot. Houston now; Iowa born. Instagram: @onthe.bl https://onthebl.org
review
ontheBL
101 Things I Learned in Law School | Matthew Frederick, Vibeke Norgaard Martin
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101 Things I Learned in Law School by Vibeke Norgaard Martin is a great little book filled with humor and levity about how lawyers are not all-knowing but fallible human beings. There are illustrations, history lessons, definitions, explanations, and more in bite sized chunks, so you can look smarter the next time lawyering comes up in a conversation.

https://onthebl.org/2019/08/15/101-things-i-learned-in-law-school

review
ontheBL
The Farm: A Novel | Joanne Ramos
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Joanne Ramos has quite a literary career ahead of her if The Farm is what she brings to the table with her debut novel. Golden Oaks is a place the extravagantly wealthy go to incubate their babies in Hosts, who are every color, background, ethnicity, and all in desperate need of money.

You can read the full review at https://onthebl.org/2019/08/13/the-farm/

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ontheBL
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“While similar networks existed throughout France, the “caretakers of Invalides” literally carried the keys to what was arguably one of the safest hiding places in the country…”

Louise Sounds like a fascinating book! Stacked! 📚 2w
17 likes1 stack add1 comment
review
ontheBL
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How to Date Men When You Hate Men by Blythe Roberson is a hilarious and insightful look into the weird world of dating as a semi aware person with a love hate relationship for the opposite gender. Roberson is wildly honest about her Timothee Chalamet obsession, but who am I to judge with my love for bagpipes. She's funny, deep, smart, and intensely real.

https://onthebl.org/2019/08/06/how-to-date-men-when-you-hate-men

review
ontheBL
Gods of Jade and Shadow | Silvia Moreno-Garcia
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There are good things and bad things about Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia. I liked the story quite a bit, but the characters and the storytelling fell flat. It is the perfect summer read because summer isn't over yet!!!

https://onthebl.org/2019/08/03/gods-of-jade-and-shadow

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ontheBL
The Farm: A Novel | Joanne Ramos
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"As if being a good girl and being strong willed were in conflict."

britt_brooke Lovely photo! 3w
ontheBL @britt_brooke Thank you! 3w
Chelsea.Poole Beautiful ♥️ 3w
ontheBL @Chelsea.Poole Thanks! 3w
23 likes4 comments
review
ontheBL
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Pickpick

I Like to Watch by Emily Nussbaum from is the best book I've read this summer. As the work-from-home, freelancer, hermit, stay-at-home dog mom, I mean, writer I am, I watch a lot more TV than I own up to. I have a lot of opinions, and I'm yet to find one of Nussbaum's I disagree with. Here's my review; you should read it, then read the book.

https://onthebl.org/2019/08/01/i-like-to-watch

review
ontheBL
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Panpan

If you're looking for a harsh yet kind not completely bad book review, look no further. Evvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes made me sad because the plot sucks. The dialogue is good, but it's definitely nothing more than an escapist read for vacation.

https://onthebl.org/2019/07/25/evvie-drake-starts-over

review
ontheBL
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I grew up on 80s comedies. Steve Martin‘s SNL skits were performed by a twelve year old me in the hallways of my church for a captive audience of my peers who were less educated on comedy of years gone by. Nick de Semlyen reminded me of all the comics, skits, and movies I grew up loving in Wild and Crazy Guys, an exploration of a decade of comedy that changed everything.

https://onthebl.org/2019/07/20/wild-and-crazy-guys

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ontheBL
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Death in the Air by Kate Winkler Dawson brings people‘s lives and struggles to life on each page creating a compelling book difficult to put down about the deadly smog and serial killer of 1952 London. I don't normally like books about serial killers, but I do love books about London and history. If you're looking for a book filled with dark and creepy details, this is definitely a good one.

https://onthebl.org/2019/07/13/death-in-the-air

22 likes1 stack add
review
ontheBL
Passing | Nella Larsen
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Passing by Nella Larsen is one of those books you want to sit with letting the words roll through your mind reveling in the meaning and feeling of it all. It is an amazing book holding up ninety years after it was first published. I absolutely love this little book. It is absolutely enthralling and relatable. I couldn't put it down, and I can't stop thinking about it.

https://onthebl.org/2019/07/10/passing-nella-larsen

BarbaraBB Great review. I listened to it on audio and loved it too. 1mo
ontheBL @BarbaraBB So much good packed into a little book. 1mo
18 likes1 stack add2 comments
quote
ontheBL
Passing | Nella Larsen
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“”It‘s easy for a Negro to ‘pass‘ for white. But I don‘t think it would be so simple for a white person to ‘pass‘ for coloured.””

review
ontheBL
Time After Time: A Novel | Lisa Grunwald
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It is a love story conquering time and obstacles. Set in 1940‘s Grand Central Station. A great light read for summer vacation. The plot is slow but not boring. I don't like the male lead character, but the female lead is pretty great.

https://onthebl.org/2019/07/07/time-after-time/

marleed I just wanted there to be a little more of something in the day to day of this story. But otherwise I really enjoyed it. I love the cover esp after reading. 2mo
ontheBL @marleed I thought it was boring. 2mo
marleed But your photo is awesome! 2mo
ontheBL @marleed Thank you! 2mo
15 likes4 comments
review
ontheBL
Zero Sugar Cookbook | David Zinczenko
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Mehso-so

Sugar is really yummy, but cutting it out of your diet doesn‘t have to mean you feel like you‘re eating cardboard.

https://onthebl.org/2019/07/06/zero-sugar-cookbook/

LapReader I feel so much better when I don‘t have sugar. 2mo
ontheBL @LapReader I love sugar. 2mo
14 likes1 stack add2 comments
review
ontheBL
Sabrina & Corina: Stories | Kali Fajardo-Anstine
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Sabrina & Corina is a haunting debut from Kali Fajardo-Anstine. It is a memorable collection of stories centering around latina women of indigenious descent and their lives as women, mothers, sisters, friends, and as people in the American West.

https://onthebl.org/2019/07/02/sabrina-and-corina/

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ontheBL
Sabrina & Corina: Stories | Kali Fajardo-Anstine
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"I was ashamed of myself that I still wanted her close to me, even after everything she had done."

EKonrad Absolutely loved this book! 2mo
ontheBL @EKonrad It's so good! 2mo
13 likes2 stack adds2 comments
review
ontheBL
The Stonewall Reader | New York Public Library
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The Stonewall Inn was run by the mafia and a haven for the poorest and most persecuted among the LGBTQIA community. 50 years ago, a momentous event began which would shift cultural attitudes and launch gay rights into the public view. The Stonewall Reader is a moving and brilliant collection of stories from before, during, and after the Stonewall Riots curated by The New York Public Library.
https://onthebl.org/2019/06/28/the-stonewall-reader/

16 likes1 stack add
review
ontheBL
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Paul is young and queer in the 90s on a journey and shapeshifting along the way. It is quite the book. I've never read anything quite like it before.

https://onthebl.org/2019/06/27/paul-takes-the-form-of-a-mortal-girl/

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ontheBL
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Transgender History by Susan Stryker is an amazing book full of information, insight, and emotion. Trans rights is a heated topic religiously and politically, but at the heart, people's lives are at stake. Read the full book review at https://onthebl.org/2019/06/23/transgender-history/

14 likes2 stack adds
blurb
ontheBL
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I really like this one.

DivineDiana And I really like this photograph! 🙂 2mo
ontheBL @DivineDiana Thank you! 2mo
18 likes2 comments
review
ontheBL
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Sarah McBride is more than a trans woman; she is extraordinary. Tomorrow Will Be Better is a memoir about her life and the obstacles she has encountered and overcome. From the personal to the political, she writes with honesty, dignity, and kindness. I read the entire book through happy, sad, and hopeful tears.

https://onthebl.org/2019/06/15/tomorrow-will-be-better/

12 likes1 stack add
review
ontheBL
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Dating is weird. Even since I was in high school, dating has changed a boatload. Aziz Ansari feels the same way and decided to write a book about it: Modern Romance. It is a funny and informational book about how weird dating is now with all the choices we single people have. Ansari and researchers explore dating in the U.S. and abroad. Read the full review at: https://onthebl.org/2019/06/13/modern-romance/

MrBook Great review! 2mo
ontheBL @MrBook Thanks 2mo
DivineDiana Love this photo! 💜 2mo
ontheBL @DivineDiana Ah thank you! 2mo
17 likes4 comments
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ontheBL
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Sandra Day O'Connor was the first woman on the Supreme Court, but she was so much more than that. Evan Thomas gives a beautiful and intimate look into her life and work.

https://onthebl.org/2019/06/11/first/

MrBook Great review! Love the pic! Seasonally apropos. 😁 2mo
ontheBL @MrBook Thanks 2mo
17 likes2 comments
review
ontheBL
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Mehso-so

From the creators of theSkimm. They walk you through the basics of being a successful adult from what they mean when they‘re talking about wine to networking to taxes. How to Skimm Your Life is like a cheerleader in a book. It's glossy and bright and pretty with a huge sense of humor!

https://onthebl.org/2019/06/10/how-to-skimm-your-life/

Chrissyreadit Why so-so? I‘m wondering if it is worth getting. 2mo
ontheBL It's good. I just knew all the information in the book already. 2mo
MrBook Great review! I want that chair. 😆 2mo
ontheBL @MrBook Me too 2mo
13 likes4 comments
review
ontheBL
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Mehso-so

Rolf Dobelli gives his guidelines to living a good life. Some of them I whole heartedly agree with, and some of them I could leave behind. He writes with a sense of humor and life experience.

https://onthebl.org/2019/06/08/the-art-of-the-good-life/

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ontheBL
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Panpan

Rich People Problems is the last book in Kevin Kwan's Crazy Rich Asians trilogy. It is probably the best of the three books but still has a lot of pitfalls. The character development is lacking. The plot is solely driven by the opulence and drama.

https://onthebl.org/2019/05/31/rich-people-problems/

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ontheBL
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A beautiful memoir about Rinpoche's physical and spiritual journey.

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ontheBL
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Kamal retells Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice set in small town Pakistan. The Binats are a good Muslim family but have the misfortune of five unmarried daughters at home. This is a beautiful novel combining a British classic with modern Pakistani culture.

https://onthebl.org/2019/05/30/unmarriageable/

14 likes1 stack add
review
ontheBL
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Panpan

The fast paced and drama filled plot covers up the poorly developed characters. It's a fun summer read, but completely lacking in depth.

https://onthebl.org/2019/05/21/china-rich-girlfriend/

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ontheBL
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Mehso-so

Fire & Blood by George R. R. Martin is a testament to his genius. It takes an incredible mind to flesh out a fantastical history from nothing. That being said, it is very dry and boring. History textbooks are more entertaining.

Also I had a lot of fun dressing up in a burgundy ball gown at Glassell in Houston's museum district.

https://onthebl.org/2019/05/18/fire-and-blood/

review
ontheBL
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This is one of those memoirs you'll start reading and find your hand over your heart. This one story represents thousands and thousands of untold stories. Kan's coming of age memoir touches on China's one-child policy, hukou, forced, sterilization, religion, and much more.

https://onthebl.org/2019/05/16/under-red-skies/

MrBook You‘ve got a lot of creative pictures. 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 2mo
ontheBL @MrBook It's my job. 2mo
MrBook That makes sense 😆🙈. Creatives bring life and excitement to the world. 😎 2mo
12 likes1 stack add3 comments
quote
ontheBL

“...no plan made by man has ever withstood the whims of the gods above.”

review
ontheBL
Home Remedies | Xuan Juliana Wang
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Home Remedies by Xuan Juliana Wang is a beautiful collection of short stories about a generation of Chinese.

https://onthebl.org/2019/05/11/home-remedies/

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ontheBL

“I had set off on my own to intentionally seek this disruption through what I had been thinking of as an ego-suicide mission.”

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ontheBL

““Bernard has no money. He only gets about ten million a year to live on,” Carol confirmed.”

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ontheBL
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Helen Zia brings a human and personal aspect to the struggle and resilience of the thousands of people fleeing Shanghai during the communist revolution.

https://onthebl.org/2019/05/05/last-boat-out-of-shanghai/

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ontheBL
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Vanessa Hua gives immigration a story in A River of Stars, which is much needed right now in the unstable political climate. Immigration is a hot topic. Sometimes, I think, we forget we're not just talking about an issue, we're talking about people's lives and the lives of their children.

https://onthebl.org/2019/04/30/a-river-of-stars/

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ontheBL
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“Daisy didn't realize that you might share the same bed, but dream different dreams.”

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ontheBL
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Claire Mazur and Erica Cerulo are the cofounders of Of a Kind. They use their experience as work wives to write about the ways female duos and trios are changing leadership and the workplace. For the better in my opinion.

https://onthebl.org/2019/04/27/workwife/

DivineDiana What a pretty picture! 💐 4mo
ontheBL @DivineDiana Ah, thank you!!! 4mo
8 likes2 comments
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ontheBL
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“Following your gut is the one hard-and-fast rule of forging a work-wife partnership.”

review
ontheBL
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I recreated(ish) the cover of Chelsea Handler's latest memoir. Beau didn't cooperate as well, and all I had was an apple and an orange. Plus we have opposite colors. Anyways, her book is great.

https://onthebl.org/2019/04/24/life-will-be-the-death-of-me/

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ontheBL
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A memoir about leaving yet searching. The need for home and being truly one's self is a deeply rooted emotion driving Ayelet Tsabari on a journey spanning the world.

https://onthebl.org/2019/04/20/the-art-of-leaving/

11 likes1 stack add
review
ontheBL
Mother Winter: A Memoir | Sophia Shalmiyev
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Mother Winter by Sophia Shalmiyev from Simon Books is one of the most memorable and interesting memoirs I have ever read. She cuts through the bullshit and simultaneously maintains the poetic essence of the narrative. It is one of the few books I can't stop thinking about. Read my review of this marvelous memoir at

https://onthebl.org/2019/04/16/mother-winter/

blurb
ontheBL
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I woke up to snow yesterday in Chicago. I got to do a bunch of reading on the car ride to Iowa because I'm spending the week with my parents.

review
ontheBL
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Mehso-so

The Elephant in the Room is a beautiful memoir filled with inspiration about one man's weight loss journey.

https://onthebl.org/2019/04/11/the-elephant-in-the-room/

review
ontheBL
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From the Corner of the Oval is the story of Beck Dorey-Steins experiences in the White House under the Obama administration as a stenographer. She has a witty way with words that brings you along and makes you giggle as she succeeds and struggles.

https://onthebl.org/2019/04/08/from-the-corner-of-the-oval/

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ontheBL
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We Were Eight Years in Power by Ta-Nehisi Coates is an amazing look into the deeply rooted problems of American society. They say the pen is mightier than the sword. It's a scalpel cutting precisely to dissect society and humanity to see the reality our country faces. As I was reading Coates‘ words, I wondered if he ever reads his writing and thinks ‘damn, I am a magician with words.'
https://onthebl.org/2019/03/31/we-were-eight-years-in-power/

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ontheBL
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“All my life I had watched women support the dreams of men, hand over their own dreams to men, only to wonder, in later years, whether it was all worth it.”

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ontheBL
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A deep dive into gender, race, relationships, and what it means to grow and be human. Jodie Patterson confronts it all when she realizes her daughter is her son, Penelope. Opening up about the ups, downs and absolute mystery of mothering well in a world that too often vilifies different is courageous.
https://onthebl.org/2019/03/25/the-bold-world/

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ontheBL
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I can't believe it has been a month since I was on the beach in Mexico. I was lucky enough to get some beach reading done. Nachi-Cocom was a brilliant way to spend a day relaxing and parasailing with three generations of my family.
Read at: https://onthebl.org/2019/03/22/cozumel-mexico/