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Here is the book list which sums up all the titles presented and discussed within the group this month. At some point, maybe I should create a master list of all books discussed — eliminating duplicates — to get a sense of how many unique books our group has discussed since its inception in October, New to the list this month: two people recommended magazines, and several readers singled out audiobook versions of books they are reading, so I will do my best to annotate titles according if they are discussed as audio versions.
Enjoy our previous silent book club meeting reports and book lists here. Particularly warm kudos are in order this month to the silent book club members who made it through the February cold and over the snowy, slippery streets to our bookish oasis. Our normally book-focused chit-chat strayed — innocuously at first — into the seemingly unavoidable state of the world today, including commentary on the latest shenanigans coming from the country to our south aka the elephant next to which Canada sleeps.
Suddenly, we seemed to realize we did not want to stray down that path — and we rapidly got back on the intended path. The refreshingly robust manner in which our group resisted — stayed true to what the group is about — did my heart and brain immense good. I hope the readers around the table with me today felt the same way.
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Our discussions are anything but inconsequential or unimportant. I would not call this practice a form of avoidance.
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Here, as usual, is the book list which sums up all the titles presented and discussed within the group. Each reader offers capsule reviews — positive or negative, always constructive. The list continues to reflect a diverse and vibrant range of subjects and genres that might spark the interest of anyone keeping up with our club. Some members read aloud brief selections from their recent reading.
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Our silent book club was included in a late feature about silent book clubs in the international news publication The Christian Science Monitor. Winter returned to Toronto with a frigid vengeance this Saturday morning. Each reader offers capsule positive, negative or mixed — always refreshingly constructive — reviews. Our silent book club was included in a recent feature about silent book clubs in the international news publication The Christian Science Monitor. As I confessed recently , was a challenging reading year for me.
I read some great books and attended some memorable readings and book events, but how I read mostly books, sometimes on screen and my normal reading tempo was impeded by vision problems. My vision deteriorated in an alarmingly short period of time due to the swift and severe onset of cataracts.
If it was, I knew I had to accept changing how I read and would have to adapt accordingly. Other readers read in other ways, and I could too if I had to.
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Still, I did my best to share a few thoughts on my reading as I went along, and managed to put up some snippets on Goodreads, Twitter and even Instagram. Sometimes those wee comments sparked a bit of conversation with fellow readers, which was nice and some continued reassurance that not all of social media is a relentless dumpster fire. I continued my commitment in to a daily devotion to at least one poem … and usually more, as friends on Twitter continued to generously share their poem choices and reflections via the todayspoem hashtag.
In , I gathered up all my tweets here. Another reading practice that sparks joy ahem as I navigate through books is that of sundaysentence , tirelessly championed and curated by author David Abrams. An important milestone this reading year just past is that my treasured but admittedly battered, over year-old book of books got a much needed restoration. Here are the books I read and read aloud in , with a few recollections of where I was when I was reading them. This was the only book I reread this year, but it was a splendid one to revisit.
I very much enjoyed this introduction to Louise Penny and Chief Inspector Armand Gamache thanks to enthusiastic recommendations from my silent book club friends. Still Life … with beagle-basset …. Not only was the book captivating, but it was great to hear about it firsthand from Aitken and Anne Carson gasp!
Even from the back row, it's possible to feel The Power of Anne Carson.
With light heart, I pack for silentbookclub, optimistic the fellowship of readers and the delights of Rachel Cusk and Emily Hasler will restore my reading mojo. My husband and I read this book aloud at the cottage. I remember quite vividly that this was when my vision was just about at its worst, about a month before the first of two eye surgeries. They stood together, flashlights trained on a congealed lake of blood. On what was lying in that lake. But as Maura walked under the paifang gate, with its four carved lions, she felt as if she were entering a different city, a different world.
It was one of the last meals they would ever eat together, and the memory of that day now pierced like a dagger to the heart. Although this was a bright spring dawn, and the same checkers-playing men sat chattering in the morning chill, melancholy darkened everything she saw, turning sunshine to gloom. She walked past restaurants where seafood tanks teemed with silvery fish, past dusty import shops crammed with rosewood furniture and jade bracelets and fake ivory carvings, into a thickening crowd of bystanders.
She spotted a uniformed Boston PD cop towering over the mostly Asian crowd and worked her way toward him. The cold look he gave her left no doubt that the police officer knew exactly who she was.
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Whose testimony might send one of their own to prison. She returned the stare, just as coldly. Always been a dream of mine. Do you speak Cantonese, too? A number of my colleagues were Chinese. Most of these old-timers speak Cantonese or the Toisan dialect. Half the time, I need an interpreter myself. My parents came over from Fujian province. The traitor had arrived.
But we found a Heckler and Koch automatic down in the alley below. Looks like someone fired off a few rounds up here. At least five. Do we have an approximate time?
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Bending down, she lifted the plastic sheet and stared, unable to speak for a moment. The woman was a Caucasian in her early thirties, slim and athletic, dressed all in black in a hoodie sweatshirt and leggings. The body was in full rigor mortis. Her hair, a rich auburn, was gathered at the nape of her neck in a simple ponytail. But it was the wound that Maura focused on, a slash so deep that it divided skin and muscle and cartilage, severing the lumen of the trachea and exposing the pearly surface of the cervical spine.
The arterial gush that had resulted was powerful enough to spray blood in a shockingly wide radius that left splatters across the curtain of sheets hanging on a nearby clothesline. My guess is, her fingerprints are on the grip. It had to be appallingly sharp, wielded without hesitation.
Imagined that same blade slicing across that slender neck. Shuddering, she rose to her feet and stared down from the roof at the police officers standing at the far end of Knapp Street, holding back onlookers. The crowd looked twice as large as it had only moments before, and the day was still early. The curious, ever relentless, can always smell blood. Maura turned to her. He killed a man. A good cop, who had a wife and kids. We all respect Graff, and we can understand how he lost it that night.
I just deliver the facts.
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Let it roll off and focus on your job. Jane looked down at the body.