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What have you read recently? 2021
Old 01-01-2021, 10:46 AM   #1
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What have you read recently? 2021

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Old 01-01-2021, 10:57 AM   #2
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Thanks. This is my favorite thread. I have found lots of great suggestions here .

Right now, I am reading The Sun Down Motel. It's a ghost story told in two timelines about 35 years apart. Ghost stories aren't a genre I usually read, but it was highly recommended and I am enjoying it. In fact, a couple of times it has been downright creepy.
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Old 01-01-2021, 01:19 PM   #3
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That old thread I started got over 333k views. Very gratifying.
I too have gotten a lot out of the reading thread.

Happy New Year and happy reading!
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Old 01-01-2021, 01:24 PM   #4
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I just finished Grisham’s latest, “A Time for Mercy”. It’s written as a follow on from his first book, “A Time to Kill”.
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Old 01-01-2021, 02:46 PM   #5
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I just finished Grisham’s latest, “A Time for Mercy”. It’s written as a follow on from his first book, “A Time to Kill”.
I am on the waiting list at my public library for Time for Mercy but it will probably be months before I get it. Maybe I will have to buy it. John Grisham owns a home a couple of blocks from me. He is a nice and very interesting person. He says he always has the plots of several new books in his brain. On the local radio he said recently is thinking of a plot now involving college basketball.
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Old 01-01-2021, 03:24 PM   #6
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I just finished Grisham’s latest, “A Time for Mercy”. It’s written as a follow on from his first book, “A Time to Kill”.
Isn't "Sycamore Row" fitted between "A Time to Kill" and "A Time for Mercy?"
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Old 01-03-2021, 01:06 PM   #7
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Currently reading Dissolution by C.J. Sansom, (the first of a series featuring protagonist Matthew Shardlake).....halfway through and thoroughly enjoying it:
https://www.panmacmillan.com/authors.../9781447285830

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England, 1537: Henry VIII has proclaimed himself Supreme Head of the Church and the country is waking up to savage new laws, rigged trials and the greatest network of informers ever seen. Under the order of Thomas Cromwell, a team of commissioners is sent through the country to investigate the monasteries. There can only be one outcome: the monasteries are to be dissolved.

But on the Sussex coast, at the monastery of Scarnsea, events have spiralled out of control. Cromwell's Commissioner Robin Singleton, has been found dead, his head severed from his body. His horrific murder is accompanied by equally sinister acts of sacrilege - a black cockerel sacrificed on the altar, and the disappearance of Scarnsea's Great Relic.

Dr Matthew Shardlake, lawyer and long-time supporter of Reform, has been sent by Cromwell into this atmosphere of treachery and death. But Shardlake's investigation soon forces him to question everything he hears, and everything that he intrinsically believes . . .
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Old 01-03-2021, 04:42 PM   #8
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Finished Bob Woodward's book Rage for the second time. Scary to say the least.

Now reading Ben MacIntyre's Agent Sonya about a very successful Russian spy

About to start Jonathan Alter's His Very Best (biography of Jimmy Carter)
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Old 01-13-2021, 01:37 PM   #9
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Finished A Gentleman in Moscow. I enjoyed this book quite a bit.

Has anyone read Amor Towles’s first book, Rules of Civility?
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What have you read recently? 2021
Old 01-13-2021, 10:36 PM   #10
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What have you read recently? 2021

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Has anyone read Amor Towles’s first book, Rules of Civility?

Yes, I enjoyed it, too. I like Towles’ writing style. Rules of Civility was not quite as engrossing a story as A Gentleman in Moscow, but it was still very good!

Edited to add: I just discovered the author Guy Gavriel Kay and really like his historical epics that are set in a fictional world very like ours. Just finished The Lions of Al-Rassan and liked it a lot. It was based on the reconquista of Spain.
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Old 01-14-2021, 09:02 AM   #11
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Paper: Paging Through History
by Mark Kurlansky

I enjoyed his "Cod" and "Salt" but I thought this was his best one. A fascinating and extremely informative account of paper, printing, and much more. I learned a lot reading this.
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Old 01-17-2021, 01:30 PM   #12
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I thoroughly enjoyed the latest book in Alexander McCall Smith's delightful 44 Scotland Street series titled A Promise of Ankles. He always comes up with some interesting plotlines for his Edinburgh characters.

I did not enjoy Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia, but to be fair, it's a genre I normally avoid, gothic horror/supernatural. I decided to read it because of the great reviews the book has received, but I found the story ridiculous. Interestingly, after I finished the book, I discovered I've actually been to the village and region in Hidalgo state of Mexico that the author based her fictional village on.

I also read Jacqueline Winspear's memoir titled This Time Next Year We'll Be Laughing. The vast majority of the book is about her early childhood in post-war SE England. Since I've read all of her novels in her great Maisie Dobbs series, it was somewhat interesting to read the many anecdotes about her extended family, which clearly became plot elements in her Maisie Dobbs novels. But I would have liked to read more about her later life than story after story about her life as a very young girl. The book only holds interest for fans of her Maisie Dobbs books, but even though I loved those books, I couldn't get excited about her memoir.
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Old 01-17-2021, 02:23 PM   #13
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I've mostly switched to audiobooks in order to workout/clean/etc. at the same time and because I found out that you can get free audiobooks from the library!

Two books I've read recently that I'd recommend are:

Deacon King Kong by James McBride. It had been on a lot of best-of 2020 lists so I decided to give it a try and I was not disappointed!

The Wrecking Crew by Kent Hartman. A nonfiction book about the studio musicians in LA - I had no idea that during that time, the musicians playing on recordings were not the same as would be on tour - very fascinating and seems particularly timely with the recent passing of Phil Spector, who is mentioned several times in this book.

Happy Reading!
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Old 01-25-2021, 05:21 PM   #14
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Forty Autumns the true story about German family and the iron curtain. Very interesting reading...

https://www.amazon.com/Forty-Autumns...=forty+&sr=8-1
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Old 01-26-2021, 03:25 PM   #15
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'Herzog', a novel by Saul Bellow. Good so far. Sounds just like Roth.
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Old 01-26-2021, 03:48 PM   #16
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'Herzog', a novel by Saul Bellow. Good so far. Sounds just like Roth.
Will definitely have to read this. Love baseball.
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Old 01-27-2021, 04:22 PM   #17
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I read 2 Mick Herron spy novels: Dead Lions (2nd in series) and Spook Street (5h in series) that cover Slough House's where "slow horses" (British MI5 agents) that goofed up in some previous job actions. I really enjoy Herron's writing style which has a lot of witty phraseology.

I should mention the books start off very slowly and Dead Lions was kind of depressing at first but the pace picked up in the middle of the book.

From Amazon on Dead Lions:
Quote:
The disgruntled agents of Slough House, the MI5 branch where washed-up spies are sent to finish their failed careers on desk duty, are called into action to protect a visiting Russian oligarch whom MI5 hopes to recruit to British intelligence. While two agents are dispatched on that babysitting job, though, an old Cold War-era spy named Dickie Bow is found dead, ostensibly of a heart attack, on a bus outside of Oxford, far from his usual haunts.

But the head of Slough House, the irascible Jackson Lamb, is convinced Dickie Bow was murdered. As the agents dig into their fallen comrade's circumstances, they uncover a shadowy tangle of ancient Cold War secrets that seem to lead back to a man named Alexander Popov, who is either a Soviet bogeyman or the most dangerous man in the world. How many more people will have to die to keep those secrets buried?
https://smile.amazon.com/Dead-Lions-...1785907&sr=8-1
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Old 01-27-2021, 04:37 PM   #18
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I am currently reading the last book of the trilogy by Graeme Simsion, The Rosie Result, subsequent of The Rosie Project and The Rosie Effect.
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Old 01-27-2021, 04:38 PM   #19
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I read 2 Mick Herron spy novels: Dead Lions (2nd in series) and Spook Street (5h in series) that cover Slough House's where "slow horses" (British MI5 agents) that goofed up in some previous job actions. I really enjoy Herron's writing style which has a lot of witty phraseology.
I enjoyed Spook Street also:
https://www.early-retirement.org/for...43066-168.html Post 3346

Always on the lookout for his other works.
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Old 01-27-2021, 04:44 PM   #20
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I enjoyed Spook Street also:
https://www.early-retirement.org/for...43066-168.html Post 3346

Always on the lookout for his other works.
From Wikipedia his other works:

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The Slough House series (Jackson Lamb)

Slow Horses (2010)
Dead Lions (2013)
The List (2015 novella)
Real Tigers (2016)
Spook Street (2017)
London Rules (2018)
The Drop (US title: "The Marylebone Drop") (2018 novella)
Joe Country (2019)
The Catch (2020 novella)
Slough House (2021)
Our library has several in Ebook form.
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