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scowler1

scowler1

Joined July 2018

review
scowler1
Once Upon a River | Diane Setterfield
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Pickpick

Really interesting book full of great characters, tragedy, love, murder, mystery, the whole shebang.

TheEllieMo This is one of my favourite reads of the year so far 3d
scowler1 @TheEllieMo In my top ten for sure, it's been a good year so far. 3d
LiteraryinLititz I‘m glad to hear you both liked it! @TheEllieMo @scowler1 It‘s been on my TBR but maybe I‘ll bump it up. 3d
19 likes2 stack adds3 comments
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scowler1
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Pickpick

Excellent book this, even if you don't care much for non-fiction. Flawlessly researched and precise and straight to the point. Favorite mind-blowing part; (spoiler!) How America popularized eugenics, one particular book selling so well it was translated into German. You can guess the rest.

5 likes1 stack add
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scowler1
The Immortalists | Chloe Benjamin
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Mehso-so

Great until the last fifty pages when it seemed to fizzle out to a less than satisfying conclusion. Lovely writing and fascinating story, until the ending.

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scowler1
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Pickpick

Not as enjoyable as his book Stuff Matters but very good though. He injected a little too much of his own personality into it, which is fine of course but not interesting to me. His scientific insights are incredible and that's what makes this an amazing read.

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scowler1
American Gods | Neil Gaiman
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Couldn't resist these two at B&N today. The only two of Gaiman's novels I've never owned, good excuse to read them for the n'th? time.

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scowler1
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Mehso-so

Decent novel about life, love, tragedy and all that good stuff. Well written and interesting but it did fizzle out at the end; perhaps that's the point, life eh?
Odd adjective 'tarnished gold' at the beginning. Pure gold never tarnishes but I guess most jewelry isn't pure. Still, I'd have gone with brass.

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scowler1
Give Me Your Hand | Megan Abbott
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Mehso-so

Pretty good read but the second death (murder?) wasn't quite believable. All came together well for the ending though, I just wish the murder/death/kill scene had been better.

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scowler1
The Good Son: A Novel | You-Jeong Jeong
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Pickpick

Not at all what I was expecting, much better actually. Unique and disturbing. Can't say much more without spoiling it, really good, read it.

7 likes1 stack add
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scowler1
An Anonymous Girl | Sarah Pekkanen, Greer Hendricks
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Mehso-so

Not a bad thriller, character driven, it took a while to get going but when it did it was good fun. Bit of a cheesy wrap up chapter but some people need that I suppose? Probably make a good T.V. miniseries.

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scowler1
Elevation | Stephen King
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Pickpick

This little gem was a perfect Sunday afternoon read. Great as always, short, singular and perfect. How Mr King keeps coming up with new ideas is beyond me. It's set in Castle Rock so he probably wrote it in his sleep.

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scowler1
Melmoth | Sarah Perry
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Pickpick

Another strange one from Sarah Perry. Strange and creepy and quite brilliant. This kind of novel should be read at night, alone in an empty house and by candlelight.

saresmoore I am going to take that reading suggestion. 1mo
11 likes1 stack add1 comment
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scowler1
Memory Wall: Stories | Anthony Doerr
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Pickpick

Absolutely brilliant collection of short stories. This guy really paints pictures with words. The last story had me choking back tears.

8 likes1 stack add
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scowler1
Adele | Leïla Slimani
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Pickpick

Got back from the library and finished this without putting it down. It's so good. A lot of sex, not gratuitous though. Short review sorry, need bathroom and lunch!

8 likes1 stack add
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scowler1
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Mehso-so

Good concept, believable post apocalyptic new world, interesting story. I found the writing a little cliched though and it was a bit predictable.

JennyM The cover is cool 2mo
4 likes1 comment
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scowler1
Florida | Lauren Groff
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Pickpick

Very good, a little melancholy but that's okay. Short stories with one recurring character. The narrator's voice seems to be the same one through the whole book though. Intentional?

saresmoore Ooh, that‘s a good question. I really enjoyed this one—felt like I was wandering around in Groff‘s brain. 2mo
Becker I appreciate both the picture and your thoughts. 2mo
10 likes1 stack add2 comments
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scowler1
Oksana, Behave! | Maria Kuznetsova
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Pickpick

Wickedly good debut novel. A couple of sketchy bits at the beginning almost put me off but I continued and it was well worth the effort. Excellent character writer, really fun read.

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scowler1
The Parade | Dave Eggers
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Pickpick

I saw the ending coming a mile away but I think that was intentional. The road being built is smooth and perfectly straight and only the men building it are unable to see what happens at the end. Fueled by lies and propaganda, people will do almost anything. Quick read, very interesting, great writer.

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scowler1
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Mehso-so

Couldn't finish it. Great characters and writing but the story wasn't going anywhere. I stopped caring about half way through, shame.

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scowler1
Rust & Stardust | T Greenwood
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Pickpick

Excellent book. I am completely heartbroken and need to throw up. Now if you'll excuse me.

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scowler1
Ohio | Stephen Markley
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Pickpick

Incredible book. Unemployment, War, Meth & Oxycodone, toxic masculinity. The American dream. Seriously good, best read this year for me. So dark at the end. Brilliant.

9 likes1 stack add
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scowler1
The Order of Time | Carlo Rovelli
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Pickpick

Is time real? Is it only a perception unique to humanity? Physics and philosophy fail to provide any real answers but this book explains a lot about what we do know. Revelatory and mind bending stuff. I enjoyed it very much.

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scowler1
The Melody | Jim Crace
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Mehso-so

This lacked the mystery of his other books I've read. I spent most of the time waiting for something interesting to happen but it really didn't. It's superbly written of course.

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scowler1
Sabrina | Nick Drnaso
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Pickpick

Bleak but brilliant graphic novel. A sad story about the sad state of the nation, the harm social media platforms can do. Little human touches throughout give the book it's warmth and hope, if we could only learn to care about each other. Facebook is overrun with salacious gossip, conspiracy theory and targeted advertising. What a mess Zuckerberg. He should check out Litsy, this is social media as it should be.

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scowler1
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Enjoying my new library. I didn't even know Jim Crace had a new book, best kind of surprise!

BridgetteM Good choices! I‘d have a hard time choosing which to read first. 3mo
8 likes1 comment
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scowler1
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Pickpick

Unique and quite strange. A fairytale re-telling of Moby Dick from the whale's perspective, highly fantasised with whale technology and speech. A little confusing at first but very good and beautifully illustrated. Young Adult? Children's? Old man? Who cares. A good story is just what it is.

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scowler1
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Pickpick

Good thriller, Hitchcock style but fairly original and very nicely written. Couldn't put it down, and the ending was good too. Thrillers usually disappoint me at the end but this one didn't.

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scowler1
The Elementals | Michael McDowell
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Pickpick

Not a big horror fan but this was a great story, beautiful writing that really captures the moment. Good stuff indeed.

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scowler1
Safe Houses: A novel | Dan Fesperman
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Mehso-so

Pretty good espionage thriller type of stuff. Interesting concept, something I've not read or thought about before. Not too deep or complex, quite believable on the whole but it tailed off a bit at the end with some missed opportunities. A little too convenient in wrapping up.

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scowler1
Cherry: A novel | Nico Walker
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Pickpick

I only just noticed the skull on the cover. This is a fun read. Opiates, Iraq and hopelessness; the American dream. It's all quite horrible but uniquely written. A bit stretched out at the end but overall a brilliant depiction of war and what it does to a young man. I feel ashamed.

6 likes1 stack add
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scowler1
Sight | Jessie Greengrass
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Mehso-so

I'm not sure about this one. The writing is just beautiful, but on the whole it bored me a little. There are some interesting historical passages regarding the discovery of x-rays, psychology and anatomy, that weave through a pretty uneventful biography of an unknown woman. If I wasn't a science nerd I'd probably have quit halfway.

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scowler1
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Pickpick

Awesome book. Written from the perspective of an autistic person, it's completely believable. Wonderful writing and story had me crying and laughing on the same page. Amazing work.

JennyM Glad you loved this one, too. I also saw the stage production last year, which was brilliant. I highly recommend if it ever comes to your neck of the woods. (edited) 3mo
scowler1 Sounds interesting @JennyM 3mo
6 likes1 stack add2 comments
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scowler1
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Panpan

Started well, good sci-fi concept with interesting characters. So many cliches and crappy dialogue though, I almost couldn't finish it.

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scowler1
Sight | Jessie Greengrass
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Library trip, which first? Don't say all of them, I've already got two others half read.

JennyM Nice selection. I pick this one - (edited) 3mo
JennyM I‘m also curious on your thoughts about Sight. I‘ve heard good things 3mo
scowler1 Started reading Sight @JennyM. It's beautiful. Semi autobiographical perhaps, I'll have to ask her. 3mo
9 likes3 comments
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scowler1
Milkman | Anna Burns
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Mehso-so

A bit wordy for my tastes. Definitely a unique writing style and a great story but it went on a bit considering how much actually happens. A hundred pages would have been enough.
And the picture is nothing to do with the book, just reminiscing. I do miss the sound of this guy at six a.m. on a frost bitten morning.

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scowler1
House of Leaves | Mark Z Danielewski
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Mehso-so

It took a big effort to get through this. For the most part it's very well written, but often nonsensical and seemingly irrelevant. There are some fascinating stories in here but you have to want it, and often I found I didn't. A pretentious gallery show with live installations and loud, mind numbing music in the background, while everyone around you tries to sound intelligent while discussing terrible art.

zsuzsanna_reads That's a great review! I know just what you mean about pretentious exhibitions 😂😂 3mo
9 likes2 stack adds1 comment
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scowler1
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Pickpick

Absolutely brilliant. What a writer. She's working on a novel apparently and I can't wait.
It's quite disturbing in places, often bizarre, sometimes mildly erotic but then not really.
I am so impressed.

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scowler1
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Good library trip 😀

Post---OAP Just read House of Leaves. An incredible adventure, fun and powerful all the way through. Plus a great lesson in maintaining character voice. 3mo
scowler1 Reading it now @Post---OAP . It's insane. I can't stop reading it though. 3mo
10 likes2 comments
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scowler1
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Hilarious. At a time when white lead foundation, beauty spots and powdered wigs were commonly worn by wealthy men. What fun!

zsuzsanna_reads But surely not worn by the men before their wedding day! 😂😂 4mo
8 likes1 stack add1 comment
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scowler1
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Pickpick

I gather a few readers didn't appreciate the last book of Earthsea. Perhaps not knowing there would be two more books was the real upset. I loved this one.

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scowler1
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' I addicted myself to the opening of heads.'

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scowler1
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Pickpick

Second Perrotta I've read, the characters are brilliant. So distinct and interesting, it really feels like you know them.

4 likes1 stack add
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scowler1
The Reservoir Tapes | Jon McGregor
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Pickpick

Sweet, short, interesting read. Small village, missing teen, every chapter a different persons narrative. Don't expect all to be answered at the end, you have to make that bit up yourself.

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scowler1
The Dreamers | Karen Walker
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Pickpick

Great story, love it. Beautiful. The last few chapters really tied the whole tale together and left me feeling completely in awe.

10 likes1 stack add
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scowler1
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It's got maps in it! MAPS!

BookishMarginalia Love me a #bookishmap or two! 4mo
BlameJennyJane Love maps!! 4mo
15 likes2 comments
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scowler1
The Winter People: A Novel | Jennifer McMahon
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Mehso-so

I was really liking this right up till near the end. An unconvincing character was introduced then the author choose to reveal all, Agatha Christie style, as if we hasn't the intelligence to have figured it out all out by then. Good supernatural mystery/thriller until the wheels fell off.

8 likes1 stack add
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scowler1
Washington Black | Esi Edugyan
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Pickpick

Fantastic book, horrific in places but so hopeful. Seeing yet another black female author getting recognition also gives me hope.

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scowler1
Annihilation | Jeff VanderMeer
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Pickpick

I tried to read this four years ago and bailed for some reason. Better this time around, I quite enjoyed it and I'll read the others I expect. Short novel but there is a lot in there to digest.

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scowler1
Washington Black | Esi Edugyan
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New library! New books! Underground parking!
Happy, happy, joy, joy!

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scowler1
Summer | Karl Ove Knausgaard
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Pickpick

Short random chapters describing the minutia of the mundane, ordinary objects and emotions of life. There are two longer 'Diary' chapters in between with a separate short fictional tale told within the diary. This book, the last in the series, gets a bit metaphysical at times. My favorite chapter was Ice cream.

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scowler1
Vox | Christina Dalcher
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Mehso-so

Fast and fun to read but ultimately too hard to believe. The opening drops right into a crazy new world and attempts to explain everything that's happened as logical if abnormal, and the ending comes too fast and conveniently wraps everything up in a nice, neat package. Nah.