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tjwill

tjwill

Joined May 2016

English teacher, Book reviewer, Vonnegutian, Slytherin, INFJ, Time travel enthusiast
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tjwill
Sun Moon Star | Kurt Vonnegut
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I‘m so glad I bought this. I would have sooner if I had known what it was like: a children‘s picture book written in free verse, about the birth of Christ. This is the story as only Vonnegut could do it—matter of fact and whimsical at the same time. I love it.

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tjwill
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Pickpick

This has a wide variety of recipes, and her commentary on when and how to serve shows how food is often a social part of Angelou‘s life. That‘s how I was raised as well, so I related. I really want to try her caramel custard recipe. Yum. #AuthorAMonth

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tjwill
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#currentlyreading My favorite student (mentioned previously) brought this 1926 edition to me last week and said she wanted me to read it so we could discuss. I‘ve read Emerson before, but I‘m rereading and refreshing now. It has some delightful annotations from her and previous owners. “Self-Reliance” seems to be her favorite.

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tjwill
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Pickpick

This memoir spanned through Angelou‘s formative years and told about many of the hardships she had to work through. Some of it is hard to read (tw: sexual assault, rape), but she skillfully explains in retrospect how she was impacted by her experiences. I listened to the audiobook; I love listening to her tell her own stories. #AuthorAMonth

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tjwill
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Pickpick

I feel like this book sums up my life pretty well right now. People are always saying to “look on the bright side” or that “things will get better” and that doesn‘t help when someone is going through difficult times. My coworkers are likely sick of me mentioning toxic positivity because I bring it up every time I notice it, which is a lot. I recommend to anyone who‘s been told to count their blessings whilst having a mental breakdown.

Maya.McClan I should read this. People that always want you to ”smile” drive me nuts. Just because I‘m not smiling doesn‘t mean I‘m being negative. Toxic positivity is real. 3mo
Megabooks Excellent review! 3mo
AmyG Nothing says support like “just smile”. 😳 I so get this. 3mo
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tjwill @Maya.McClan Yes, same here! 3mo
tjwill @Megabooks Thanks so much! 3mo
tjwill @AmyG Yesssss, I hate that. 3mo
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tjwill
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Pickpick

This is a cute picture book series by Maya Angelou; each features a child from a different place around the world. Izak of Lapland, who cares for his reindeer Totti, was one of my favorites. #AuthorAMonth

Soubhiville Oh these are cute! 3mo
38 likes1 comment
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tjwill
Letter To My Daughter | Maya Angelou
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Pickpick

I listened to the audiobook read by the author. This one has a collection of shorter works, with Angelou telling stories about her past and life lessons she wants her daughter to know. It repeats some of the stories from Mom & Me & Mom. #AuthorAMonth

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tjwill
Mom & Me & Mom | Maya Angelou
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Pickpick

I teach an excerpt from this book in 7th grade English class, but I had never read the whole book. I listened to the memoir read by the author, which was wonderful. It focuses on key moments in her relationship with her mother, spanning from her childhood to her mother‘s death. It is pretty short, so I listened to the full book today. #AuthorAMonth

TheBookHippie I‘m rereading this -I enjoy it all over again. 4mo
47 likes1 comment
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tjwill
The Fire Never Goes Out | Noelle Stevenson
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I used some of my Christmas gift card on these, a graphic novel and a graphic memoir. I‘m looking forward to reading them!

41 likes1 comment
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tjwill
Will | Will Smith
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Mehso-so

Maybe I saw too many rave reviews and had a high expectation, but I thought it was only ok. There were some inspirational parts as he learned lessons about life and himself, but he also spent what felt like a loooong time talking about making Ali, which was a bit much. Lots of bragging. I don‘t like him any less than I did before, but I also don‘t like him any more. 🤷🏻‍♀️

Soubhiville Yep, I agree. 4mo
britt_brooke Agree …. actually, I panned it. 😂 The constant bragging killed me. 3mo
tjwill @britt_brooke Yeah, it was obnoxious to hear “I was the biggest movie star in the world” that many times. 🙄 3mo
40 likes3 comments
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tjwill
Unsheltered: A Novel | Barbara Kingsolver
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Pickpick

This was my third #AuthorAMonth for January, which alternates timelines. I immediately liked the present day story with the Knox family settling into an old home in New Jersey, dealing with loss and some strained family relationships. It took me longer to get into the story of Thatcher Greenwood, also in NJ but in the 1800s, a science teacher struggling to follow the expectations of his new school, but I was drawn in by the overlap in the stories.

TheBookHippie I‘m reading this right now. 4mo
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tjwill
The Bean Trees | Barbara Kingsolver
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Pickpick

This was my second #AuthorAMonth pick for January. A young woman travels across the country (KY to AZ) and changes her name (Marietta to Taylor) to feel free of her small hometown. Along the way, a woman leaves a young child with her near an Indian reservation, begging Taylor to take care of the little girl, whom Taylor names Turtle. She must rely on others for help as she starts over as an unexpected mother.

DivineDiana Reading this now, and enjoying it! 🙂 4mo
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tjwill
Flight Behavior | Barbara Kingsolver
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Pickpick

I‘ve been on a roll with my #AuthorAMonth books! I already knew I like Barbara Kingsolver (who is local to me) and wanted to read more, so this was the first this month. Dellarobia is feeling disconnected to her life in small town Appalachia (I can relate at times), but she comes across an unusual natural phenomenon involving butterfly migration that changes her life and perspective.

Soubhiville Great job! 4mo
39 likes1 comment
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tjwill
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New mug from a student—it has been nice to have tea mid-morning or after lunch. I used to make herbal or green tea after lunch every day and got out of the habit with all our crazy schedule changes with covid. Having a new mug inspired me to start the habit again.

vonnie862 Love the cup! 4mo
TheBookHippie ☕️🖤 I love it! 4mo
47 likes2 comments
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tjwill
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Pickpick

This is a beautiful collection of poems with some art by the poet as well. Many of the poems are about family, struggling with self-acceptance, and hope for the future. This is one of my favorites.

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tjwill
Unsheltered: A Novel | Barbara Kingsolver
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That sentence hit hard. 😬

JanuarieTimewalker13 My mother wanted me to go to college so badly bc she lacked that opportunity, having her first child at 19. I was the last child of 3, and in her third decade of having children- 1945, 1954 and 1962. She was a waitress after my dad died -8 months after I was born. She was spotlessly clean and a great cook. I can only imagine how she would‘ve excelled in whatever profession she chose had she had the opportunity. I love that line! (edited) 4mo
JanuarieTimewalker13 Kingsolver is a great writer. 4mo
tjwill @JanuarieTimewalker13 It‘s a great line, and I‘ve always liked everything of Kingsolver‘s I‘ve read. Your mother sounds wonderful. 4mo
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JanuarieTimewalker13 Thank you!! I just edited my post bc I read you were a teacher and my sentence structure was (and probably still is) off. 4mo
JanuarieTimewalker13 Yeah, my mom had such a rough life, but I always say she was my soulmate mother. Perfect match❤️ she passed young- almost 58. I was 21. Way too young. That‘s why I always worry about foster kids and orphans. You may not need a large family, but you need one person to believe in you and guide you. (edited) 4mo
tjwill @JanuarieTimewalker13 Ha! I don‘t judge anyone‘s sentence structure online! I teach many kids who are foster kids and have dealt with loss of all sorts. I totally agree that all kids need someone who believes in them! 4mo
JanuarieTimewalker13 Oh, that‘s a rewarding profession! Good for you and I‘m sure those kids are lucky to have you🕊 4mo
43 likes7 comments
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tjwill
Complete Sherlock Holmes | Arthur Conan Doyle
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Bookish things for Christmas!

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tjwill
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My sister and brother-in-law just got me this Vonnegut vintage boxed set for Christmas. I am so psyched about this! 😍😍

OrangeMooseReads JEALOUS! 😍 5mo
vivastory This is incredible! I have a couple of early edition Vonnegut books & I 💙them 5mo
britt_brooke OMG. Best gift ever!! 🤩 5mo
Nute That is really cool! 5mo
LeahBergen Wonderful! 5mo
49 likes5 comments
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tjwill
56 Days | Catherine Ryan Howard
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Will this make a good jury duty book, or should I go with something lighter?

Megabooks It will keep your attention. Or at least it kept mine! 5mo
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tjwill
The Holiday Swap | Maggie Knox
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December 21 #botm

catiewithac Mine took forever to arrive this month, too! 5mo
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tjwill
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I know you‘re not “supposed to” have favorite students, but my favorite student gave me this book for Christmas. I love this child. She is so thoughtful and wonderful to talk to. She‘s been through a lot recently, and she has amazing strength and presence of mind.

Texreader How amazingly sweet! 5mo
BarbaraTheBibliophage This is just so precious! 5mo
Smrloomis How lovely 💕💕💕 5mo
Aims42 That is so sweet!! 5mo
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tjwill
A Little Hope: A Novel | Ethan Joella
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November 21 #botm

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tjwill
Black Beauty | Anna Sewell
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#currentlyreading with my daughter (10 yo)—isn‘t this a beautiful edition?

Leftcoastzen So pretty! 8mo
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tjwill
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Nonfiction #bookmail

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A thriller and a romance for this #botm. #itendtogetlost (in books)

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tjwill
Reason for Hope: A Spiritual Journey | Jane Goodall, Phillip Berman
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Pickpick

Jane Goodall is an inspiring human. She explains some of the experiences in her life that have given her hope for humanity and the future in this autobiography.

I‘ll have this in the mail to you tomorrow, Barbara! Thanks for sharing this one. Another successful book exchange!

BarbaraTheBibliophage Sounds good - glad you liked it. And SO glad we did this PBC again this year! 💕 8mo
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tjwill
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Pickpick

This book is beautiful! It has many simple life lessons learned and spoken by the four friends.

robinb One of my very favorites. 😊 8mo
zezeki I've read it recently and loved it! 8mo
BookBabe Great illustrations! 😃 3mo
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tjwill
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I haven‘t got a #botm for many months, but I‘m getting two this month.

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tjwill @robinb I‘ve seen so many good things about it! 9mo
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tjwill
Reason for Hope: A Spiritual Journey | Jane Goodall, Phillip Berman
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This arrived yesterday, and I‘m already loving it. The first chapter about her childhood is lovely.

Riveted_Reader_Melissa Yes, I loved her childhood and her beginnings in Africa. So beautifully described and written! 9mo
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tjwill
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Pickpick

This book discusses how popular music has been an influence in breaking gender norms in recent culture. There were many artists I had anticipated, and some surprises as well. I learned a lot, and I enjoyed listening to the music and artists mentioned while I was reading!

Riveted_Reader_Melissa I found myself pulling out music too with this one. 9mo
BarbaraTheBibliophage I‘m super excited to read this one!! 9mo
tjwill @BarbaraTheBibliophage Sorry I didn‘t mention before, but it is on the way to you! They told me it would be there on Monday. 9mo
BarbaraTheBibliophage @tjwill Perfect - thanks! 9mo
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tjwill
Sea of Tranquility: A Novel | Emily St. John Mandel
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Beautiful cover! And I can‘t wait for this one! Time travel with quarantine vibes and a colony on the moon sounds fascinating!

Publication in April 2022
(EW says the 19th, Goodreads says the 1st) 🤷🏻‍♀️

https://ew.com/books/emily-st-john-mandel-sea-of-tranquility-cover-first-look

JenaJenkins Oh! I loved Station Eleven - can‘t wait to check this out! 10mo
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tjwill
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This arrived today! I‘m looking forward to starting it!

Riveted_Reader_Melissa I‘m so glad it arrived safely! 10mo
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tjwill
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Pickpick

I borrowed this one from the library, and now I want a copy! This book is so beautiful! It features some of the National Parks of the United States with wonderful illustrations that highlight the flora, fauna, and other defining characteristics of each area. This one is the Great Smoky Mountains, which is the one in the book I live closest to.

BookishMarginalia Pretty! 10mo
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tjwill
Snow, Glass, Apples | Neil Gaiman
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Pickpick

New favorite version of Snow White! Neil Gaiman‘s story is fantastic, and Colleen Doran‘s artwork is incredible! It is dark, magical, and erotic, as it tells the Queen‘s side of the story.

TheBookHippie Isn‘t it fantastic ?! I just love it. I got a copy as a gift from a litten! Just love. 10mo
tjwill @TheBookHippie Yes! What an awesome gift! I borrowed this one from the library. 10mo
Clare-Dragonfly Wow! I haven‘t seen these illustrations though I‘ve read the short story before. I‘ll have to look for this edition. 10mo
tjwill @Clare-Dragonfly I highly recommend it. It‘s beautiful! 10mo
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tjwill
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I‘ve been planning it for a while, but I started this project this week. I‘m building a brick bench in the backyard and #currentlylistening to the tagged Poirot mystery. The right picture was when I started digging out the grass perimeter, and the left picture shows how I‘ve dug out about a third of it down 8-10 inches. I got an appointment for the concrete footer to be poured on Tuesday. I think my family thinks I‘m crazy for doing this myself.

Riveted_Reader_Melissa Go you! Great job! We need to do more for ourselves, because no one else volunteers to even help usually. 10mo
LeslieO At first glance I thought you were digging a grave to go with your Christie mystery! 10mo
tjwill @Riveted_Reader_Melissa Thanks! My dad acted like I was insane, but I think he‘s going to end up helping me with the masonry part. 10mo
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tjwill @LeslieO Lol! I worried that the neighbors might assume that too! 10mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @tjwill I completely understand, I can beg my brother to help me with a repair or project for years, but if I give up and do it myself… I‘m insane. 🙄. Hopefully he comes around and it can be a bonding adventure! 10mo
tjwill @Riveted_Reader_Melissa Yep! 🤞🏼 10mo
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tjwill
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Pickpick

This book discusses why people dislike listening to experts, examining the problem from different angles in society. Nichols explains the ideal role of the layperson & the expert as fellow citizens. He approaches the topic through his role as a U.S. foreign policy expert & professor. He gives plenty of examples, from current events & history, which he connects seamlessly, even if he does verge on ranting a couple times.

#NforNonfiction group

tjwill @BarbaraTheBibliophage It‘s in the mail! They said it should be there by Monday! 10mo
BarbaraTheBibliophage Super! I‘ll watch for it - thanks! 10mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa Yea, he definitely had some strong opinions, but I‘ve noticed that in all our books so far this year. Maybe it‘s a theme…I‘ll let you know when I‘ve read them all. The next one definitely has a bit of snark at a few times. 10mo
BarbaraTheBibliophage It‘s here safe and sound! (Forgot to comment about it …) 10mo
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tjwill
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Pickpick

This book looks at what makes an author unique by the numbers of individual words, types of phrases, length of sentences, chapters, etc. There were some slower parts, but in general I thought it was an interesting analysis of how authors use language. And I love visual data!
#NforNonfiction

@BarbaraTheBibliophage I just put this in the mail to you. They said it should be there by Tuesday!

BarbaraTheBibliophage I will watch for it. Thanks! 11mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa Sounds very interesting! 11mo
sherri Sounds fascinating! Adding to my TBR. 11mo
BarbaraTheBibliophage Arrived today!! (edited) 11mo
tjwill @BarbaraTheBibliophage Great! I look forward to seeing your thoughts! 11mo
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Just received this today—thanks @Riveted_Reader_Melissa ! I‘m finishing Nabokov‘s Favorite Word is Mauve this week, and then jumping right into this one! I love the condescending blurbs on the cover! 😁😬#NforNonfiction

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tjwill
Brown Girl Dreaming | Jacqueline Woodson
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That time I met Jacqueline Woodson: she was so kind and friendly! This was at 2015 ALA, when she was being celebrated for so many awards for Brown Girl Dreaming! I‘ve also seen her speak a couple times since then, and she is so inspiring! #AuthorAMonth #AAMJW

BarbaraTheBibliophage Ohmigosh, how cool!! 12mo
Soubhiville I‘ve seen her at book fests a couple times too. She‘s a terrific speaker. 💕 12mo
sprainedbrain Wow! 12mo
Ericalambbrown That‘s so cool! 12mo
52 likes4 comments
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tjwill
Star Wars: Jedi Academy | Jeffrey Brown
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It‘s so nice seeing this guy becoming a more confident reader! He picked this book at the library and has been determined to read it himself. #raisingreaders

Riveted_Reader_Melissa That‘s awesome! #ParentingWin 12mo
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tjwill
Illuminae | Amie Kaufman, Jay Kristoff
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I hadn‘t been participating with #MayCharacters, but I just saw the prompt #merciful and had to share. If you‘ve read this one, you‘ll know that this line can make you shudder.

Am I Not Merciful?

Eggs Beautifully done ✅📚👏🏻👍🏼 12mo
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tjwill
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It has charts and graphs! I‘m looking forward to reading this one! #NforNonfiction

BarbaraTheBibliophage 🤓🤓 Fun! 12mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa That looks like fun, I‘m excited to see the comparisons across authors. And it‘s so interesting to see author patterns, and I‘d guess great for identifying unnamed authors. 12mo
wanderinglynn I love that there is a chart of exclamation points. I feel that this will soon be at the top of my NF TBR. 😆👍🏻 12mo
BarbaraTheBibliophage Hey Tara … I‘m trying to plan my June reading. Any idea when this might reach me?? 😘 11mo
tjwill @BarbaraTheBibliophage Yes, I will finish by the weekend and mail by Monday (or earlier if possible)! Sorry I‘m running behind! I‘m teaching summer school this week and taking a class as well. It‘s been hectic for the beginning of summer! It‘s actually a fairly quick read, but I have only been able to read little bits at a time lately, besides audiobooks while I‘m driving. (edited) 11mo
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tjwill

Hello, nonfiction friends! I‘m tagging some of my nonfiction TBR picks below.

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Riveted_Reader_Melissa I haven‘t read any of these either, so any would work for me! 13mo
daniwithtea Ohhh these are all good choices! I‘m leaning toward Rockefeller Suit, Labyrinth, or Mauve, because I feel like they‘re a nice contrast to some of our others, but I am open to any of them!! 13mo
BarbaraTheBibliophage My picks are Mauve (don‘t we have a tradition of language-related books?) or Catfish. Or Rockefeller. 13mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @BarbaraTheBibliophage I was thinking that about Mauve too...our tradition of a word related book. So I‘ll just say Mauve and make that one unanimous. 13mo
daniwithtea I am so excited for all of our picks! Are we going to stick with the same send order as last time (I think I was sending to @Riveted_Reader_Melissa so maybe we went alphabetically?), and has anyone‘s address changed? @BarbaraTheBibliophage @tjwill 13mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @daniwithtea That works for me. And yes, I think we did, @BarbaraTheBibliophage to @daniwithtea to @Riveted_Reader_Melissa to @tjwill does that sound right to everyone? Next question is, has anyone moved or changed physical or email addresses? I have our original list, so if the emails are the same and anyone needs an address, I can send it to them. 13mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @daniwithtea Oh, and my physical address abs email address are the same. 13mo
tjwill @Riveted_Reader_Melissa @daniwithtea @BarbaraTheBibliophage My address and email are the same. I‘m excited! When does everyone want to start? Read our own books in May or June before sending? (edited) 13mo
BarbaraTheBibliophage Same addresses for me also. I‘m excited, friends!! 13mo
daniwithtea Same address for me as well! 12mo
Riveted_Reader_Melissa @tjwill I think we are planning on reading in May and mailing on in June...but I‘ll admit, I‘m going to be right at the last minute. 12mo
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ladym30 This was excellent!❤️ 1y
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Sanatorium | Sarah Pearse
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Has anyone tried out the #ReesesBookClub app? I‘ve read several of her book club picks, but wondered if the app is worth getting. This month‘s book is the tagged book.

mollyrotondo I am actually really enjoying the app. I haven‘t kept up with Reese‘s picks lately. Only by accident have a read some of her choices. But I purposefully bought and read her February pick so that I could participate in the weekly discussions. They have a moderator for the chats which I really love. And there is an EventBrite interview with the author and Lucy Foley on Saturday that you can sign up for through the app. I‘m liking it very much. 1y
tjwill @mollyrotondo Thanks so much for the feedback! Discussions and interviews sound great! 1y
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tjwill
The Great Alone | Kristin Hannah
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Pickpick

There is so much pain and sadness in this story, but also such resilience and hope. Leni‘s parents, both damaged and idealistic in different ways, decide to move them to the wilderness of Alaska when she is a young teen. They must adapt to the hard winters as they navigate the darkness of her dad‘s PTSD. I don‘t want to give any spoilers, so I‘ll just say it is an expansive story of family, community, and difficult love.

LoverOfLearning Great description! I loved this one! 13mo
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tjwill
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Pickpick

This book is amazing. Psychologist Adam Grant discusses the idea of “knowing what you don‘t know” by being open to learning, listening to understand, and making your values (not your opinions) the things you live by. I just finished the audiobook, but I‘m also going to buy the hardcover to reread and mark it up!

DogMomIrene This sounded good, but when I read that you‘re buying a whole other version of the boom to mark up, I‘m convinced. I only do that for the seriously great books that I want to revisit, even if that means skimming my mark ups.👊🏼 1y
Crazeedi And after reading description I'm thinking there are many many people who need to read and learn from this book. 1y
IamIamIam Sounds great!! I've always loved the quote, "If you're the smartest person in the room, you're in the wrong room." 1y
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tjwill @DogMomIrene 🙌🏽 I know I‘m going to revisit this one! 1y
tjwill @Crazeedi Agreed! 1y
tjwill @IamIamIam I love that! 1y
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tjwill
Multiple Choice | Alejandro Zambra
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The whole book is set up like a multiple choice test. In this section, it says to put the sentences in the most coherent order. I love how it‘s like poetry, but not exactly. I love how an order occurs to me based on my experiences but that I imagine others see it differently. I really love this one. Anyone want to share their answer? I‘ll put mine as a spoiler in case anyone wants to choose first, then compare our answers.

tjwill B 1y
Mccall0113 Reminds me of choose your own adventure books! 1y
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tjwill @Hestapleton 👯‍♀️ 1y
tjwill @Mccall0113 I loved those as a kid! Maybe that‘s why I still love books with interesting formats now. 1y
Eggs B (edited) 1y
Kelly_the_Bookish_Sidekick This sounds interesting! 1y
Eggs Cool book 1y
Eggs Stacked 1y
tjwill @Eggs 😁 1y
Avanders D... I see the rest of you have said B. I wonder what that says about me... or my family. 🤭😘 @tjwill @Hestapleton @Eggs 1y
tjwill @Avanders I love how there is no right answer, so it gets each person thinking of what that means for them personally. 💕 1y
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