Currently Reading

I wanted to just share a bit about the current books I’m reading. My reading has been a bit slow going but I’m really enjoying my current reads very much so I don’t mind if it’s taking me a while to get through them.

First is Devotions by Mary Oliver. I purchased a Kindle edition earlier this year when it was at a special price and I think I’ve learned that I need poetry books in physical form. When I read poetry I like to go back and forth between the pages and this is just not working as well for me. Of course when it comes to the poems themselves, what can I say, I have fallen in love with several of them.

My other read is O Pioneers! by Willa Cather. What a wonderful story of struggle, love and family in the Great Plains. I love the main character, Alexandra Bergson, who is intelligent and willing to take risks to get ahead. I’m more than half way through this book and think there’s going to be some heartbreak ahead but I can’t wait to see what happens next.

For Paris in July I decided to read All the Flowers in Paris by Sarah Jio. This is a dual storyline with two characters from different time frames. Celine is living in Paris during the German Occupation and Caroline is living in Paris in current times. The two women’s lives are somehow connected and this will be discovered through some letters. I don’t know why but I thought this was going to be all in epistolary form but it’s not. While I definitely want to know how this is going to be wrapped up, there are some aspects of the story that are bugging me. I’ll have to share more about that once I finish this book.

Finally, I started Devil in a Blue Dress by Walter Mosely. Now this book has a ton of atmosphere and I feel like I’m right there with Easy Rawlins in 1940s Los Angeles. I can hear the music of the clubs he’s visiting and sense the charged-atmosphere of encounters he has with men who may be wearing suits but you know are gangsters and would soon put a bullet in anyone who looked at them in the wrong way. I hope I can finish this one by Tuesday for my book group meeting. So curious to hear what the other readers have to say about this book.

So those are my current reads. I hope you are reading some great books. I’m going to be doing some bookbinding this weekend so I’ll tell you more about that in the next blog post. Let me know what you are up this weekend and hope you have a great one!

...Read More

The Address

“After several years toiling as a maid and working her way up the ranks, she’d been awarded the position of head housekeeper at London’s Langham Hotel a month prior. One of he largest tasks was keeping the maids in line, all young girls with hardly a shred of common sense among them.”

The Address
By Fiona Davis
Source: Advance review copy

Sara Smythe knows she has to be on top of every detail at the Langham Hotel if she wants to continue working there but her paths will cross with the Theodore Camden, the American Architect visiting London, when she rushes to help his family to avoid a tragedy. He takes notice of her and makes her an offer that will take her across to America and a new beginning.

Theo has a vision for The Dakota Hotel, where tenants will come and have everything they need within their grasp and he believes Sara will be the perfect “Managerette” for his hotel. The two work tirelessly to ensure that every piece of glassware and all furnishings are ready for the grand opening. This closeness they share will lead them to rely on each other more and see each other as more than employer and employee.

The book is a dual narrative with chapters alternating between Sara’s story in 1884 and Bailey Camden’s story in 1985. Bailey, A former party girl, finds herself without much of anything after finishing a stint at rehab and has to accept her wealthy cousin’s offer to remodel The Dakota. Bailey may be the poor relation and as such doesn’t have much of a say into the renovations her cousin wants to make to The Dakota but she doesn’t agree with them.

When she starts clearing out old remnants left behind she finds a trunk which will lead her to start looking into her family history a bit more and find out who exactly Sarah and Theo were.

I read this one a while back and although I didn’t think the whole connection plot line of Bailey’s family heritage was too surprising what I have found is that I still remember a lot about Sara’s story. Probably not so strange as I do enjoy historical settings. I thought this was very readable and certainly would love to revisit New York one day and pass by and see this iconic hotel.

...Read More

New Book Arrivals

Hello Friends! I hope you’ve been doing well and had a good weekend. I’ve been just busy with work and when not working, trying to relax. I had the chance to catch up with some friends and family over phone calls last weekend so that was very nice.

In other exciting news my book buys to celebrate my bloggiversary last month finally arrived. Actually I’m still waiting for one but thought I’d go ahead and share what I got.

First up is Devil in a Blue Dress by Walter Mosley. Am I like the last person who hasn’t read this book? I didn’t see the movie version either but this is the choice for my book group discussion next week. Not sure if I’ll be able to participate (virtually) but I am looking forward to this book.

I had also heard a book tuber I follow talk about Mexican Poet, Jaime Sabines, and how his poetry is very accessible. I have heard of him but had never read any so I decided to get this collection of love poems, Poesia Amorosa, which I could only find in Spanish. I’m so excited to read this book.

My third treat was the Kolaj Magazine #28. This is a magazine about contemporary collage. I remember hearing about this a while back and then I forgot but am so glad I looked into again. I love art and lately collage is calling me more and more. The subscription rate is not too high so I thinking of subscribing.

Speaking of magazines, remember a while back I had mentioned that I was going to call my local B&N to see if I could do some curbside pickup of magazines? Unfortunately they told me that most of their magazines will not be coming in until later in the year. They have some of the more popular ones but I love to read crafty magazines and independent magazines so they aren’t carrying those for now. Some of those do have quite expensive subscriptions so I’ll have to see which others I’ll try to subscribe to. Anyway, we’ll see. At least I have discovered a new one.

Anyway, that’s the latest around here. What new books have you added to your shelves?

...Read More