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      Important Announcement!   07/28/2018

      Dear BCF members,   This forum has been running now for many years, and over that time we have seen many changes. Generalised forums are nowhere near as popular as they once were, and they have been very much taken over by blogs, vlogs and social media discussions. Running a forum well takes money, and a lot of care and attention, as there is so much which goes on behind the scenes to keep things running smoothly.   With all of this in mind, and after discussion within the current moderator team, the decision has been made to close this forum in its current format. I know that this will disappoint a lot of our long term members, but I want to reassure you that it's not a decision which has been taken lightly.    The remaining moderator team have agreed that we do not want to lose everything which is special about our home, and so we are starting a brand new facebook group, so that people can stay in touch, and discussions can continue. We can use it for free and should be easier for us to run (it won't need to be updated or hosted). We know not everyone has FaceBook, but we hope that those of you who are interested will join the group. We will share the link, and send invites as soon as we are ready to go. Added: We may as well get this going, find us here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/195289821332924/   The forum will close to new registrations, but will remain open for some time, to allow people to collect up any information, reading lists etc they need to, and to ensure they have contact details for those they wish to stay in touch with.    The whole team feel sad to say goodbye, but we also feel that it's perhaps time and that it feels like the right choice. We hope we can stay in touch with all of you through our new FaceBook group.   I personally want to thank everyone who has helped me moderate the forum, both in the past and the present, and I also want to thank every single person who has visited, and shared their love of books.. I'm so proud of everything we've achieved, and the home we built.   Please visit the new section in the Lounge section to discuss this further, ask questions etc.
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Anna Begins

Anna Begins reading in 2018

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It's so great to be back here!

 

I am/ have been focusing on new books and preferably ones that don't take place in the US. I mostly started this in March. I've finally been reading enough to feel like I could make a thread and keep up :)  Also I am trying not to read so much history. 

 

Anyway, Hi :)

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Here's what I've been reading so far:

 

February 

4/5 The Midnight Line (Jack Reacher #26) by Lee Child (385)

5/5 Gorilla and The Bird by Zac McDermott (288)

5/5 How to Stop Time by Matt Haig (331)

3/5 I Am I Am I Am: Seventeen Brushes with Death by Maggie O'Farrell (304)

Total= 1308 pages

 

March

5/5 Night by Elie Wiesel (148) * reread 

5/5 Dawn by Elie Wiesel (100) *reread

4/5 Day by Elie Wiesel (130) *reread

4/5 Sing, Unburied Sing by Yesmyn Ward (305)

5/5 Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo (259)

4/5 Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gayle Honeyman (332)

3.5/5 Go by Kazuki Kaneshiro (167)
 

Total= 1441 pages

 

April

3.5/5 Into the Thickening Fog by Andrei Gelasimov (266)

5/5 Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi (322)

3/5 Eat The Apple by Matt Young (272)

4/5 The Flight Attendant by Chris Bohjalian (345) (4 rating because of stunning end!)

3/5 The Odds of Loving Grover Cleveland (274) (3 rating because of the lackluster end!)

3/5 Girl, Interrupted by Susanna Kaysen (192)

5/5 Pachinko by Min Jin Lee (496)

3.5/5 The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah (435)

3/5 An American Marriage by Tayari Jones (306)

 

Total= 2,908 pages

 

May

4/5 The Underground Railroad by Colton Whitehead (306)

5/5 K2: Life and Death on the World's Most Dangerous Mountain by Ed Viesturs (354)

5/5 No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks by Ed Viesturs (368)

4/5 Eiger Dreams by Jon Krakauer (208)

 

Total= 1,236

Edited by Anna Begins

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TBR of Pulitzer Prize Winners:

2007: The Road by Cormac McCarthy (324)

2008: The Brief Wonderous Life of Oscar Who by Junot Diaz

2009: Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Stroud (280)

2010: Tinkers by Paul Harding (192)

2013: The Orphan Master's Son by Adam Johnson (456)

2014: The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (760)

 

TBR Finalists

2015: The Moor's Account by Laila Lalami (336)

2015: Let Me Be Frank With You: A Frank Bascombe Book by Richard Ford (255)

2016: Maud's Line by Margaret Verble (306)

2017: Imagine Me Gone by Adam Haslett (369)

2018: The Idiot by Elif Batuman (427)

2018: In The Distance by Hernan Diaz (240)

Edited by Anna Begins

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TBR for May

 

Adjustment by Chuck Palahniuk (336)

The Senator's Children by Nicolas Montermarano (378)

Less by Andrew Sean Greer *2018 PP Winner (272)

White Tears by Hari Kunzru (290)

The Story of My Teeth by Valeria Luiselli (218) 

Educated by Tara Westover (337)

The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen (384)

Edited by Anna Begins

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Here are some brief reviews of a few books I have read this year:

 

4/5 The Midnight Line by Lee Child

This is one of the best Jack Reacher books! Reacher finds a West Point graduation ring in pawn shop while on a bus pit stop in a small dusty town. Fans of Reacher knows he just randomly stops around the country, getting involved in certain... matters :D Anyway, this particular ring is a tiny size and from a year that would suggest years of tours in Afghanistan or Iraq. Intrigued, Reacher is immediately in trouble- much to the delight of readers!

 

5/5 How to Stop Time by Matt Haig

I LOVED The Humans and when I found out about this book, I was anxious to read it, it was just published in February. I love how Matt Haig always has dogs in his books :D Tom Hazard is 41 years old- at least, he looks 41 years old. Tom actually is over 400 years old. While working for a secret society of people with the same affliction, he searches for his daughter who also contracted his condition. Haig once again does what he does best- capture humanity and it's nuances.

 

4/5 Sing, Unburied, Sing by Yesmyn Ward

Elements of magical realism in this book I didn't like, but I never like it. Jojo is 13 years old and living dirt poor in the middle of Mississippi. His mother is a mother only when she wants to be. There is also Michaela, Jojo's 2 year old sister who he dotes on, his baby sister loves him above all else. Jojo and the baby live with his mother's parents, mostly raised by her father (Jojo's grandfather). He is a good role model for Jojo and they love each other very much. The time comes for Jojo and Michaela's father to be released from prison and Jojo's absent, meth taking, abusive mother loads up both Jojo and his sister to meet him when released so they can be a family. 

 

5/5 Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo

This is a great book and could easily be one of my favorites of the year. Yejide and Akin love each other very much and have a great life in Nigeria. Despite Akin's mother continuing to pressure Yejide for sons, Yejide can't conceive. Then, Akin's mother proposes a second wife for him and he accepts. Then, Yejide becomes pregnant. The setting was different for me, I don't usually read about Africa, I'd like that to change. 

 

3.5/5 Into the Thickening Fog by Andrei Gelasimov

This book makes me wish I remembered my 4 years of high school Russian, just so I could read this book in the native language. The plot is loose. Some parts may have been lost in transition. It may have been symbolism for existentialism, I'm not sure. BUT! I liked this book because it took place in modern day Northern Russia. Like, -40F Northern. It is so cold, you must breathe from a scarf over your face. Within minutes, any exposed body part may suffer sever frostbite, possibly leading to death. Fliippov is a playwright in Russia and gets a job offer in France- but first he must tell his partner and childhood friend who lives in the Far North. The cold blurs the lines of reality for Filippov, who drinks his way through life, passing out and not really knowing what is going on.

 

5/5 Homegoing Yaa Gyasi

This is a stunning book, a type I am becoming attached to... I call it an epic family story or generational. Homegoing follows generations of two half sisters in 18th century Ghana- one sister is captured into slavery, the other marries an Englishman. 

 

Thanks for reading!

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Welcome back!! I enjoy looking at your reviews.

 

I hope you have a great reading year.

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Welcome back here Anna :)! Great reviews. I hope you have a great reading year :)!

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I've just started How to stop time.  I loved The Radleys.

 

It's also one of my Reading challenges.

Edited by Madeleine

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On 4/17/2018 at 6:09 PM, muggle not said:

Welcome back!! I enjoy looking at your reviews.

 

I hope you have a great reading year.

:wub:

 

On 4/18/2018 at 1:30 AM, Athena said:

Welcome back here Anna :)! Great reviews. I hope you have a great reading year :)!

*hug*

 

On 4/18/2018 at 4:39 AM, Madeleine said:

I've just started How to stop time.  I loved The Radleys.

 

It's also one of my Reading challenges.

I hope you like it!

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I finished The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah (435 pages). At one time, I had this story down to one sentence, but now, I'm not so sure. It was a good multi layered story. Almost as good as The Nightingale. I thought a little long and drawn out. 

 

Ernt Allbright moves his wife, Cora and his daughter, Leni all over the country at his whim, all the while suffering flash backs of Vietnam. When his flashback nightmares reach a peak, he is notified he inherited a piece of land in Alaska from a fellow soldier. In the bush, Leni and Cori struggle to survive, with the help of locals, in an extreme landscape in extreme winters of straight blackouts/ no sunlight. Ernts violent outbreaks increase as they struggle to be a family. There is one other 14 year old in town. Matthew.

 

This is dramatic read, emotional. I cried.

 

3.5/5 (for being a bit too long, and then too short at the end)

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I'm glad you liked The Great Alone :). I'll probably get it when it's out in medium size paperback.

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On 4/26/2018 at 8:52 AM, chesilbeach said:

Lovely to see you back Anna. :)  Hope you have a good year of reading ahead.

That's sweet, thank you :)

On 4/27/2018 at 2:12 AM, Athena said:

I'm glad you liked The Great Alone :). I'll probably get it when it's out in medium size paperback.

I think you'd like it :)

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On 4/17/2018 at 3:21 PM, Little Pixie said:

Welcome back, Anna ! May you have lots of lovely reads this year. :)

 

This got posted before my reviews! Hi!

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Here are reviews of my May reads, not too great of a month, but still came in at 1,236 pages. And 3 of them were climbing books :D

 

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead (322 pages) 5/5

This book is so good, the pages fly by.  Ending up an outcast by all other slaves on the Georgia plantation, Cora risks her life and that of many others- and others to come- to be free via the US slave escape routes on the Underground Railroad.  Excellent read. Pulitzer Prize for 2017, Oprah's Book Club recommendation.

 

K2: Life and Death on the World's Most Dangerous Mountain by Ed Viesturs (354 pages) 5/5

I am totally obsessed with this mountain, having previously read K2: The Savage Mountain by legendary American mountaineer Charles Houston. K2 is the second highest peak in the World, near the Himalayas, but in an mountain range in Pakistan called Karakoram. With the second highest death rate of the "8000ers" (14 of the highest mountains in the world, all above 26,247 feet above sea level (or 8,000 meters), K2 has only been summited by about 300 people, with 77 fatalities. In this book, the American amazing- fabulous- stunning climber Ed Viesturs tells some of the stories of the summits... and the fatalities.

 

No Shortcuts to the Top: Climbing the World's 14 Highest Peaks by Ed Viesturs (368 pages) 5/5

I was so taken by Ed Viesturs writing in the book above, I had to read more of his work. He is the only American to face climbed all of the world's 14 8000ers, and the 5th person to do it without supplemental oxygen. This man is amazing to me. I am totally smitten. He has furthered my desire of mountain climbing and I have since joined Instagram and am addicted to climbing videos on YouTube :D His email address is on his website, I wish I could get the courage :D Ed Viesturs also was the subject of the most successful IMAX documentary in history, about an Everest expedition that took place during the 1996 tragedy.  That tragedy was the subject of Jon Krakauer's book Into Thin Air, which started this all for me.

 

I ended the month with

 

Eiger Dreams by Jon Krakauer 4/5

Jon Krakauer is an interesting figure in the mountaineering and climbing society. Eiger Dreams is a collection of some of his articles for Outdoor Magazine, a magazine devoted to aspects of climbing. I was introduced to ice climbers who climb frozen waterfalls and to the hip French Alps town of Chamonix. Eiger is a mountain in the Swiss Alps.

 

:)

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Great reviews :D! I'm glad you enjoyed all of these books :).

 

:hug:

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Hurray for all the good books ! It`s such a good feeling to discover an `enthusiasm` ; I got into `real people memoirs` * comparatively recently and it`s good to explore new stuff. :)

 

* As opposed to some politician`s memoirs = aren`t I wonderful. :rolleyes:

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