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      Something Wicked This Way Comes...   10/09/2019

      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     
Janet

Janet's Reading 2011

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You will be fine :) the main problem with CA is that some storylines are better than others .. and so the book has highs and lows and you end up dreading the bits that you don't like. There are six stories, all separate but linked in some way .. and all interrupted before a conclusion is reached ... when you get to the end of the sixth story you then read the conclusion of the fifth and so on, in reverse, until you finish with the conclusion of the very first story .. so the one's that you hated or were bored or frustrated by have another chance to annoy the life out of you :lol: Leastways that's how it felt to me ... you might be lucky enough to enjoy all of the storylines.

But it's definitely worth reading ... it's different and challenging and innovative. I've been meaning to listen to it being read .. I feel I might get more out of it because the reader will bring more to it than I was able to do.

 

That is exactly what has me worrying about the book, the very extraordinary order of the stories. I fear it'll make minced meat out of me poor brain :lol: However, as much as I'm kind of dreading reading it, I do believe I might end up really liking it. So all hope's not gone.

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I read The Boy with the Cuckoo-Clock Heart by Mathias Malzieu today - it was good, but not as good as the lovely cover suggested as I'd anticipated.

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I've just started Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez. It's part of my World Challenge (and I think it's on the 1001 Challenge too - I must go and check).

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Hi Chrissy. :hug:

 

Oh, isn't it? I got it for World Book Night and one of my friends said it's one of her all-time favourite books. I haven't read any negative comments about it (but I avoided reading reviews where I can). I'm not very far in yet but I'm liking the writing so far. :) Fingers crossed!

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I forgot to mention that I bought another book yesterday - The Mysteries of Glass by Sue Gee. I've had this on my Amazon Wishlist for aeons and found it in a charity shop for £2!

 

This takes the number of books I've acquired this year to 18. Of that total, I've read 11!

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I accidentally bought The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende. In my defence, it was only 20p and counts towards my World Challenge as Allende was born in Peru!

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This takes the number of books I've acquired this year to 18. Of that total, I've read 11!

 

 

11 is good I've only managed 4 from the books I've bought this year:doh:

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Did it fall into your hand Janet ;)

That's exactly what happened - how on earth did you guess?! :giggle2:

 

Kidsmum - I'm making a concerted effort to read as many of the books I buy this year as I can. :)

 

I still have 21 of the books I bought last year to read too (not to mention the pre-2010 ones which I hadn't counted) - I've read three of those!

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I've just started Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez. It's part of my World Challenge (and I think it's on the 1001 Challenge too - I must go and check).

 

It is indeed on the 1001 Books list :cool:

 

I accidentally bought The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende. In my defence, it was only 20p and counts towards my World Challenge as Allende was born in Peru!

 

And this is also on the 1001 Books list, I'm happy to say :D So it was probably destiny, as well as an accident.

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You're quite welcome, it's always exhilarating to find out a book you've bought for some reason or another is also on one of your reading lists, by chance :smile2: It's a sort of a reassurance that you've made a good deal!

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I finished my first book since 11 April today. It's not like me - my mojo seems to have vanished. :( I gave up on Love in the Time of Cholera (I intend to go back to it as some stage) and picked up a children's book to try to kick-start my mojo again, and have just finished one of the My Story series - Transported: The Diary of Elizabeth Harvey, Australia 1790 by Goldie Alexander. It's very loosely based on the true story of Elizabeth Haywood, the youngest convict transported to Australia.

 

Although pretty basic and with a rather repetitive writing style (I think it was four times that whilst recounting her story to her master in the evening a log fell out of the fire and had to be pushed back in!) it was interesting to read how they struggled to survive on so little food whilst they waited for supply ships to arrive from the UK.

 

I have Book Club here next Wednesday so I hope my mojo returns soon!

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(I think it was four times that whilst recounting her story to her master in the evening a log fell out of the fire and had to be pushed back in!)

 

 

That made me laugh :lol:

 

Hope your mojo picks up soon, mine's been on the wane as well so you have my sympathies :)

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:lol: In one diary entry she used the phrase grey and scrubby twice - I just felt it a bit sloppy. Children, even those of 10 years old, don't need to be patronised. The content was quite enjoyable (and I think they're great for kids) but the writing was just a bit lacking...

 

Thanks. :) And I hope yours soon returns with a vengeance too!

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I hope your mojo comes back soon, Janet! It's no fun, trying to exist without it. No fun at all.

 

Too bad the writing style wasn't quite up to par in the My Story book, because the premise sounds so intriguing :rolleyes:

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Have you ever tried reading the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich? The first one in the series is called One For The Money and no matter how far away my mojo has decided to run, it always comes back for that series. Maybe It would work as bait for yours as well. :friends0:

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I hope your mojo comes back soon, Janet! It's no fun, trying to exist without it. No fun at all.

Thanks, frankie. :) I've just finished my latest Book Club book and I really enjoyed it, so I'm hoping that might kick-start it!

 

Have you ever tried reading the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich? The first one in the series is called One For The Money and no matter how far away my mojo has decided to run, it always comes back for that series. Maybe It would work as bait for yours as well. :friends0:

Oooh, no - I can't say I've heard of these but I'll go and check it out right now. Thanks. :)

 

I finished Tell Me No Secrets by Julie Corbin today. Set in Scotland, it's the story of a woman called Grace who did something in her past that she thinks is dead and buried - but then her ex-best friend, Orla, turns up and threatens to reveal what really happened 24 years ago. Grace must work out how to silence Orla before the truth comes out and brings everything crashing down around her ears.

 

Full of twists and turns, I really enjoyed it. I got into it immediately and couldn't wait to find out what happened. I hope we'll have some great discussion of it on Wednesday night (this was my choice).

 

Now I have to think of some Scottish themed ideas for a light supper! :D

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With huge thanks to frankie for providing this list. :hug:

 

Day 01 – Best book you read last year

 

It's always hard to pick one, but I'd have to go with Kathryn Stockett's excellent début The Help.

 

Enter a vanished and unjust world: Jackson, Mississippi, 1962. Where black maids raise white children, but aren’t trusted not to steal the silver...

 

There’s Aibileen, raising her seventeenth white child and nursing the hurt caused by her own son’s tragic death; Minny, whose cooking is nearly as sassy as her tongue; and white Miss Skeeter, home from College, who wants to know why her beloved maid has disappeared.

 

Skeeter, Aibileen and Minny. No one would believe they’d be friends; fewer still would tolerate it. But as each woman finds the courage to cross boundaries, they come to depend and rely upon one another. Each is in a search of a truth. And together they have an extraordinary story to tell...

 

This was the review I gave it at the time.

 

 

This excellent novel tells the story of two black maids, Aibileen, who works for Miss Leefolt and Minny, who works for Mrs Walters and often lets her tongue run away with her - and of Eugenia "Skeeter" Phelan, a white college graduate who wants more from life than just getting married and having babies.

 

Miss Leefolt is persuaded by her friend Hilly Holbrook to install a ‘coloured’ bathroom in the yard for Aibileen, to prevent her from using the toilet indoors. Minny is unjustly fired from her job working for Miss Hilly’s mother and finds it difficult to find work in the town as the white people close ranks. Eventually, she’s hired by Celia Foote, a woman considered ‘trash’ by the womenfolk of the town. Celia hides the fact she’s hired Minny from her husband.

 

Skeeter doesn’t like the way the black people are treated, but it’s difficult to effect change in the 1960s in the Deep South, so she comes up with the idea of writing a book exposing the nannies’ treatment by some white folk. This mission has to be undertaken in the utmost secret. At first the nannies are reluctant to get involved with the project, fearing for their jobs, but then a shocking event within their community takes place, and one-by-one they come forward to tell their stories to Skeeter for her book - the publication of which will change things in Jackson, Mississippi forever.

 

I loved this book. The main characters are so believable and well-written. There are lots of sub-plots taking place, including Skeeter’s relationship with her family, especially her mother who wants her to settle down, a new beau, Celia’s struggle to fit in, Skeeter’s mother’s illness… all woven together with wonderful storytelling. This is definitely my favourite book of 2010. :-)

 

 

Of 541 reviews on Amazon's UK site, 448 give it 5 stars - I think that speaks volumes. :)

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Aha! I knew I'd read good things about this book on the forum but when I bought it I wasn't quite sure who to 'blame' for encouraging me to more yet more books. Now I've found one of the culprits. ;) I can't read your review yet because of the spoilers, but the fact that you rated it as the best you read last year says enough. :) I'm very glad I bought it.

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Now I've found one of the culprits. ;)

Moi? :angel_not::giggle2:

 

I hope you enjoy it, Kylie - I'm sure you will. :)

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With huge thanks to frankie for providing this list. :hug:

 

Day 01 – Best book you read last year

 

It's always hard to pick one, but I'd have to go with Kathryn Stockett's excellent début The Help.

 

 

 

This was the review I gave it at the time.

 

 

This excellent novel tells the story of two black maids, Aibileen, who works for Miss Leefolt and Minny, who works for Mrs Walters and often lets her tongue run away with her - and of Eugenia "Skeeter" Phelan, a white college graduate who wants more from life than just getting married and having babies.

 

Miss Leefolt is persuaded by her friend Hilly Holbrook to install a ‘coloured’ bathroom in the yard for Aibileen, to prevent her from using the toilet indoors. Minny is unjustly fired from her job working for Miss Hilly’s mother and finds it difficult to find work in the town as the white people close ranks. Eventually, she’s hired by Celia Foote, a woman considered ‘trash’ by the womenfolk of the town. Celia hides the fact she’s hired Minny from her husband.

 

Skeeter doesn’t like the way the black people are treated, but it’s difficult to effect change in the 1960s in the Deep South, so she comes up with the idea of writing a book exposing the nannies’ treatment by some white folk. This mission has to be undertaken in the utmost secret. At first the nannies are reluctant to get involved with the project, fearing for their jobs, but then a shocking event within their community takes place, and one-by-one they come forward to tell their stories to Skeeter for her book - the publication of which will change things in Jackson, Mississippi forever.

 

I loved this book. The main characters are so believable and well-written. There are lots of sub-plots taking place, including Skeeter’s relationship with her family, especially her mother who wants her to settle down, a new beau, Celia’s struggle to fit in, Skeeter’s mother’s illness… all woven together with wonderful storytelling. This is definitely my favourite book of 2010. :-)

 

 

Of 541 reviews on Amazon's UK site, 448 give it 5 stars - I think that speaks volumes. :)

 

I totally agree with your choice Janet :D

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Of 541 reviews on Amazon's UK site, 448 give it 5 stars - I think that speaks volumes. :)

 

For real? That's amazing, how many debut novels get such high marks. :huh:

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