Stacking the Shelves 75

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It’s Saturday again and it’s the last day of 2022. The year seems to have flown by even more quickly than usual and it seems unbelievable that it has almost ended.

However, Saturday still means it’s time for my weekly Stacking the Shelves post. Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Marlene at Reading Reality and details are on her blog. The gorgeous graphic is also used courtesy of the site.

Stacking the Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

My STS posts are generally my library books. I’m a great believer in libraries, mainly because I could never afford to buy all the books that I want to read, and visit mine every week whenever possible. I love the fact that I can look at the online catalogue and request books to borrow. This is great for books that are recommended to me by different bookbloggers.

This week however, I’ve got a mixture of books that I’ve added to my shelves: library books, ebooks and actual books.

Library Books – I just found two this week.

The Wolf Den by elodie Harper
I didn’t read this when it first came out so I was pleased to spot it sitting on the shelf. It’s the first in a trilogy about women in Ancient Pompeii and I’ve heard so many great things about it that I can’t wait to read it.

The Russian Cage by Charmaine Harris
This is the third instalment in the Charmaine Harris’s series about Gunnie Rose. This one picks up right after the second book ended but takes Gunnie into the Russian controlled part of the imaginary 1930’s America. I’ve loved the previous two books and I’m really glad that I spotted the review on Tessa Talks Books which introduced me to the series

Ebooks – just two new ones both of which were in the kindle sale for 99p😃

Abandoned in Death by J D Robb
I enjoy this crime series set in 2056 New York. The crimes are quite grim but the relationships between the main characters are really warm which makes the books a pleasure to read.

The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri
This is another book that I’ve heard lots of good things about so when I saw it was on sale for 99p, I had to buy it.

Bought Books

Real Life Recipes by Tom Kerridge
When I was teaching full time, both myself and my husband worked long hours and so it made sense to use ready made meals quite often for our dinner. However, now that I’m retired, I do have a lot more time and so this year, I want to try and cook different things to eat.

Wilderness Watercolor Landscapes by Kolbie Blume
I love water colour painting although I don’t really have any skill. Another thing I want to do in 2023 is to spend a bit more time on my painting and see if I can try to get my paintings to look a bit more like the ideas in my head.

So that’s the very varied collection of books that I have added to my online and physical bookshelves this week. What have you added?

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The Functions Book Tag

I always get very excited when I get tagged in someone’s post to do a book tag. It doesn’t happen often 😃Being tagged by Naemi at Book Owl’s Corner to do her functions tag was even more exciting as it is an original tag so I was one of the first people who would be taking part. The downside to it was that it was so hard!!!! Which pretty much sums up my relationship with Maths, I do love it but it has never been an easy subject for me.

This was a really creative tag although it has taken me quite a while to think of books to fit each category. If you want to read the original post then you will find it here and if you don’t already follow Naemi, then have a read of her blog which is always interesting plus, she is a great person to have bookish conversations with.

The Rules

  • Thank the person who nominated you!
  • Ping-back to the original creator, Naemi @ A Book Owl’s Corner, so that she can sneakily read your answers and be thrilled at how much attention math is getting within the bookish community!
  • Answer all the prompts while appreciating the mathematical beauty contained in them! (You’re more than welcome to use the original graphics so that all the canva and GeoGebra work the creator put into them will be worth it…)
  • Tag some people! Five would be best, since five is obviously the coolest natural number out there, but any other quantity works, too.

I think that I want to thank Naemi for tagging me but this tag was really hard and it’s taken ages to think of books to fit the categories😃. However, I guess that pretty much sums up my relationship with maths; it’s really hard but I get there in the end.

I adore the musical and have made several attempts at reading the book but have never succeeded. To me, the book is just dull and I can’t get into it which is strange as I’ve read a couple of other Victor Hugo novels and enjoyed them.

Pretty much any Christmas romance book. They all end up exactly as you expect them to but the books are still lovely to curl up with on a December evening.

I love the Cormoran Strike books but this was just so hard to get through with all of the online messages and group chats. Great opening and ending but an inteminable middle.

To be honest, like so many children of my generation, anything written by Enid Blyton. I loved the mystery and adventure stories as well as both her school series.

This one did have one of the more unbelievable plots of the Christmas books I read this year. Ex boyfriends, pagan grandfathers and long lost daughters all made an appearance. It was still a heart warming read though.

I felt quite pleased that I could immediately think of an answer for this one. Several of Mercedes Lackey’s more recent Valdemar books feature pies, especially the hand size variety that can be put into a pocket and eaten while you’re on the move.

The amazing Babel by R F Kuang features many, many footnotes which added to the academic feel of the novel.

This is a really hard thing to do as there are so many books that I have read and reread over the years. My most favouritist books are probably The Lord of the Rings, Magician and The Goblin Emperor though as they are probably the books that I have reread the most often.

The Death of Lucy Kyte featured a journal written by a girl who lived several years before this story takes place. Many of the Wesley Peterson novels by Kate Ellis also use this method of telling a story from the past.

This is probably cheating but I’m going for series that intimidates me. I really want to reread the Wheel of Time books and actually finish the series as I gave up at book 9 originally. The only problem that a series of 14 books is really intimidating so I’m not sure if I ever will complete it.

I loved Tom Hindle’s murder mystery last year and I’m really looking forward to reading this next one.

So that’s it! I have finally completed the functions tag. Thank you Naemi for tagging me and I’m just sorry that it’s taken me so long to complete it.

I can never think of people to tag but if you fancy a go at a mathematically based book tag, then please join in.

Book Blogger Hop – December 30

 The Book Blogger Hop was originally created by Jennifer @ Crazy-For-Books in March 2010 and ended on December 31, 2012. With Jennifer’s permission, it was relaunched on February 15, 2013 by Billy @ the Ramblings of a coffee addict. . Each week the hop will start on a Friday and end the following Thursday. There will be a weekly prompt featuring a book related question. The hop’s purpose is to give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

I just love this meme and the questions that come up. They generate so much discussion which is great.

This weeks question is: In 2022, how many books did you read? (Submitted by Billy @ Coffee Addicted Writer))

To be honest, I’m not entirely sure. According to Goodreads, I’ve read 220 which is a lot even for me. I think it’s probably closer to 230 though as I don’t record books that I reread on Goodreads and I’m a bit behind with putting my last few reads on there.

I’ve read more this year as it’s the first full year where I’ve been mostly retired and so had a lot more time for reading.

Interestingly, in direct contrast to a lot of other blogs, I think my target for 2023 might be to read less and to spend a bit more time doing other things.

What about you? Did you achieve a reading this target this year?

WWW Wednesday December 28

It’s Wednesday again and it’s the final Wednesday of 2022. This year seems to have flown by and it doesn’t seem possible that the new year begins next week.

Wednesday means that it’s time for WWW Wednesday. This is one of my favourite memes and I love taking part in it and reading everybody else’s posts. It’s currently hosted by Sam and it can be found on her blog Taking on a world of words which can be found here.

The idea of WWW Wednesday is just to answer three simple questions about what you are reading, have just finished and are about to read so here goes for this week.

What I’m currently reading

The Marriage Season by Jane Dunn
This is a fun Regency Romance which definitely owes a debt to Georgette Heyer. A young widow takes her beautiful sister up to London for the season in the hope of her making a good marriage. There they meet handsome lords as well as a dashing hussar captain. All the normal activities are present; balls at Almacks, choosing books at Hatchards and riding in Hyde Park, however the characters are fun and I’m enjoying the developing relationships between them.

What I have recently finished reading

Let it Snow by Sue Moorcroft
This was a lovely festive read about a girl searching for her family. As well as being about Christmas, it’s about families and friendship. I really enjoyed it and I definitely now have a desire to visit Zurich over the festive season.

Sunrise with the Silver Surfers by Maddie Please
I loved this story of recently divorced Elin who spends an unexpected inheritance on a trip to her childhood home in Australia. There she reconnects with her family as well as discovering that there is definitely life after divorce. It’s a gorgeous story with a great backdrop of the Australian coast. It’s also nice as the protagonist again is an older woman proving that there is still life if you’re on the wrong side of 50.

London Rain by NIcola Upson
I’m quite sad that I’ve read all of this series now as I really love them. This one is set in London in the Summer of 1937 and it’s the time of the coronation of George VI. The murder mystery isn’t at all straightforward and the historical detail is brilliant. After seeing so much pageantry this year with the Queen’s Jubilee and then her funeral, the details of the coronation felt incredibly vivid. I think this is one of my favourites in the series.

What I am intending to read next

My lovely son bought me this for Christmas so it is certainly next up on my reading list

What are you reading this week? Did you find any exciting books under the tree?

Top 5 books of 2022 – Top 5 Tuesday

Welcome to this week’s Top 5 Tuesday post which incredibly is the final one of 2022!!!! I can’t believe that we’re in the final days of this year.

Top 5 Tuesday was created by Shanah at Bionic Book Worm, and it is now being hosted by the lovely Meeghan at Meeghan reads!! For details of all of the prompts for Oct to Dec see Meeghan’s post here. This week’s post is the top 5 books that you have read this year. This is always such a hard post to do but at least I can choose 5 rather than one.

For my top 5 books, I looked back at the 5 star reads that I’ve had this year and I’ve come up with the following list. It might be different if I did this post again next week but these are the top 5 books that I’ve read this year……… or at least some of them 😃

Empire of the Vampires

I really loved this dark fantasy despite the length and am very much looking forward to next one in the series.

Saint Death’s Daughter

Another Brilliant fantasy novel. Lanie Stones is one of my favourite characters this year.

The Rising Tide

I love Ann Cleeves especially her ‘Vera’ novels and this was one of her best. Set on the holy island of Lindisfarne, it was a brilliant mystery.

A Gentleman of Moscow

I had no idea what to expect when I read A Gentleman in Moscow but I absolutely loved this book.

Islands of Abandonment

I’ve read some great non-fiction as part of the non-fiction reader challenge this year but this one really stood out.

These are 5 of my top 5 ⭐ reads this year. What would be on your top 5?

Stacking the Shelves 74

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It’s Saturday again and it’s Christmas Eve!!!! How exciting especially as my daughter and her fiancee have escaped the snow bomb that’s covering a lot of the US and are here with us for the holiday.

However, Saturday still means it’s time for my weekly Stacking the Shelves post. Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Marlene at Reading Reality and details are on her blog. The gorgeous graphic is also used courtesy of the site.

Stacking the Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

My STS posts are generally my library books. I’m a great supporter of libraries, mainly because I could never afford to buy all the books that I want to read, and visit mine every week whenever possible. I love the fact that I can look at the online catalogue and request books to borrow. This is great for books that are recommended to me by different bookbloggers.

This week I just wandered around and found these two just sitting on the shelves waiting to be taken home.

Tick Tock by Simon Mayo
A mysterious plague that begins with a tick tock sound in your ear spreads around the world killing millions. It doesn’t sound very festive so I might leave this one until the New Year😃

London Rain by Nicola Upson
This is the only one of this series featuring the writer Josephine Tey that I haven’t read yet. It’s set in the day’s immediately before the coronation of George VI and is about the death of an eminent BBC broadcaster. I love this series and am really that I’ve found this one.

That’s what I’ve added to my book shelves this week. I’ve still got my non fiction read, Borders, as well as lots on my kindle so I’m not going to run out of things to read anytime soon.

So I’ll end this by wishing all of you a very merry and warm Christmas. Stay safe if you’re caught up in heavy snow and sub zero temperatures.

WWW Wednesday December 21

It’s Wednesday again and today is traditionally the first day of Winter here in the UK as well as being the shortest day. From now on, the days will get longer even if it’s only by a minute at a time!

Wednesday means that it’s time for WWW Wednesday. This is one of my favourite memes and I love taking part in it and reading everybody else’s posts. It’s currently hosted by Sam and it can be found on her blog Taking on a world of words which can be found here.

The idea of WWW Wednesday is just to answer three simple questions about what you are reading, have just finished and are about to read so here goes for this week.

What I’m currently reading

Let it Snow by Sue Moorcroft
I’m loving this story of Lily who has moved to the village of Middledip to get to know her half brother even though he has no idea who she is. There is a budding romance with the temporary licensee of the local pub as well as a visit to Switzerland.

What I have recently finished reading

Journeys to impossible places by Simon Reeve
I loved this one which completed my non fiction challenge for the year and my review is here

A Summer of Murder by Oliver Bottini
A bit of a disappointment for me. It was a lot more about international terrorism than a murder mystery and it didn’t really click for me.

A World of Curiosities by Louise Penny
I really enjoyed reading the latest Inspector Gamache novel. The mystery is complex and rooted in past events which included Gamache and Beauvoir’s first meeting. The subject matter is dark as always and includes child abuse as well as an actual historical event but Louise Penny handles things sensitively without lessening the impact.

The Christmas Invitation by Trisha Ashley
This was a lovely warm read even if the plot was a little far fetched.

What I am intending to read next

I still have 20 unread books on my Net Galley and I would quite like to get that down to single figures so I need to make an effort to read more of my ARCs over the next few weeks. This one is up next as publication date is next month.

What are you reading this week?

Top 5 New to me authors in 2022

Welcome to this week’s Top 5 Tuesday post. Top 5 Tuesday was created by Shanah at Bionic Book Worm, and it is now being hosted by the lovely Meeghan at Meeghan reads!! For details of all of the prompts for Oct to Dec see Meeghan’s post here.

I have read so many new authors this year after seeing books recommended by other book bloggers but these are 5 who I have really enjoyed reading in 2022.

M A Carrick

M A Carrick’s The Mask of Mirrors was the first book that I read in 2022 and I loved it and the next one in the trilogy. I can’t wait for the final book to be released in 2023.

Amor Towles

I had no idea what to expect when I read A Gentleman in Moscow but I absolutely loved this book. The Lincoln Highway was brilliant too.

Emily Henry

I think that I’ve read more romance novels this year than ever before and I did enjoy all three of Emily Henry’s books.

Philip Gwynne Jones

I picked the first book in this series just randomly off the library shelf but I loved this set of murder mysteries set in Venice. The setting is gorgeous and the mysteries are intriguing.

Cora Harrison

I love it when I discover an author I love who has written lots of books that I can go and search out. I can’t remember who recommended her but I have really enjoyed the mysteries featuring Reverend Mother Aquinas.

These are 5 of the authors who were new to me in 2022. What new authors have you discovered this year?

Journeys to Impossible Places – a review

Humans have always needed to explore. Over the centuries our desire to travel has had profound consequences including innovation, brutal conquest, trade, settlement and love. Travel has helped to create our culture, civilisation and forge the modern world. Our endless adventures are evidence of something fundamental: going on a journey is the essence of our species. Our desire to travel and explore helps to make us human.

This book details some of Simon Reeve’s travels into the most remote parts and inaccessible parts of the world. He together with his camera crew travels through the Tropic of Cancer, trying to follow the equator and then around the Indian Ocean.

I loved his accounts of the places that he travelled through and the people he met. He feels very strongly that the purpose of his journeys is at least partly to give a voice to some of the most isolated people on our world, to tell their story to a wider audience.

It’s a really uplifting book in many ways as he meets so many people who risk their lives to help Simon and his crew visit these remote communities. It was really humbling to read how little some people manage to survive on and still lead fulfilling lives. He is able to show you the reader what he sees in such a way that you feel that you are there too. I loved the way that he acknowledged how lucky he was to be able to visit these parts of the world that are close to what we might imagine paradise to be like.

It was also an incredibly depressing book as he sets out very clearly the damage that we are doing to our planet. The details of the plastic nurdles that now form a large part of the beaches in Hawaii were horrifying together with other scenes such as huge rubbish dumps just around the corner from somewhere that looked like it was paradise on earth. But maybe worse than the damage we are inflicting on our planet, some of which is through ignorance, were the accounts of the damage and harm we cause to each other. Places such as Sudan, Burma and Colombia where it was dangerous (and in one case, completely illegal) to film really came alive for me.

It’s a memoir as well as a travel book and he gives full details about his mental health issues as well as the problems he and his wife had conceiving their son. These parts interested me less and I possibly didn’t need quite so much detail about sperm health but his openness was a feature of the whole book and would have been less without it.

This was a fascinating read and I thoroughly recommend it to anyone interested in travel or just about the amazing world we live in.

This is my twelfth Non-Fiction book so far in 2022 which means that I have achieved my Non-Fiction Reader Challenge this year. I’ve really enjoyed pushing myself to read books that I wouldn’t normally have looked at and will certainly continue to read non fiction into 2023. I’ve already got my next book sorted –

The Non-Fiction Reader Challenge is hosted at Book’dout and you can find the details of the challenge here

How have your reading challenges gone this year?

Stacking the Shelves 73

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It’s Saturday again and this has been one of the coldest weeks that I can remember for a long while. The temperature got just above freezing today for the first time in over a week. Things are warming up from tomorrow though which sadly means it will rain.

It’s getting very exciting though as my daughter is flying over from Kansas City and will arrive tomorrow morning. We haven’t seen her since July 5th so I’m really looking forward to it.

However, Saturday means it’s time for my weekly Stacking the Shelves post. Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Marlene at Reading Reality and details are on her blog. The gorgeous graphic is also used courtesy of the site.

Stacking the Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts and of course ebooks!

My STS posts are generally my library books. I’m a great supporter of libraries, mainly because I could never afford to buy all the books that I want to read, and visit mine every week whenever possible. I love the fact that I can look at the online catalogue and request books to borrow. This is great for books that are recommended to me by different bookbloggers.

This week I had the new Louise Penny arrive as well as a non fiction book that I had given up on. I also found a couple of others on the shelves that looked interesting.

The Border by Erika Fatland
This was recommended months ago but I can’t remember who by. It’s the story of the author’s journey around the border of Russia, a journey of 20 000 kilometres. It’s a thick book at nearly 600 pages so will probably take a while to read.

A World of Curiosities by Louise Penny
I have been looking forward to the latest Gamache story for a while so I can’t wait to read this one. It sounds as though it might be quite disturbing as her themes often are. I have been enjoying The Three Pines on Amazon. I wasn’t sure about Alfred Molina as Gamache but I quite like his interpretation.

In Cold Blood by Adam Croft
This is by a local author and the murder mysteries are set in England’s smallest county of Rutland which is about 25 miles away from us. I do love books where I recognise the settings.

Let it Snow by Sue Moorcroft
After really enjoying A White Christmas on Winter Street, I had to pick this one up by the same author. This will probably be my last Christmas read of 2022.

That’s what I’ve added to my book shelves this week.

What’s been added to your bookshelves recently?