A little woo before work. The Ostara Tarot and Danielle Noel's The Book of Tarot .
Showing posts from February, 2019
...the man was unduly annoyed at her for having the gall to aid her country without virtue of a certain appendage hanging between her thighs. First, I will confess that a biracial romance set during the Civil War instantly made me nervous, especially since our heroine is under cover as a slave. So much could have gone wrong, and the reason I trusted it wouldn't was because of Cole. Second, all my anxieties were for naught: this book was freakin' awesome. An Extraordinary Union by Alyssa Cole Kensington, 2017 Copy from library Historical Fiction and Read Harder challenges Ellen, a former slave, has returned to the South and a life of servitude in service of Pres. Abraham and freedom. A spy with Pinkerton's group, she's been placed in the household of a high level Confederate, using her wits and eidetic memory to aid the Union. Malcolm McCall is a Pinkerton too, pretending to be a good Confederate officer. Somehow, impossibly, Cole managed to make
Don’t make the same mistakes that everyone else makes. Make wonderful mistakes. Make the kind of mistakes that make people so shocked that they have no other choice but to be a little impressed. I've had this book on my TBR for forever, probably since it was released. I actually started it once a few years ago, and didn't get very far, and I'll be honest -- I kind of gritted my teeth to finish this one in January so I could tick it off my list. Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things by Jenny Lawson Macmillan Audio, 2015 Audiobook from library Read Harder challenge I hadn't remembered Lawson is the blogger The Blogess, so I wasn't familiar with her style of writing and tone. Furiously Happy is a collection of pieces (most original, some reworked blog posts) touching on a variety of topics related to her desire to try to live life 'furiously happy'. The tone of these pieces are darkly funny; Lawson is occasionally horrifying (he
This weekend I'll be starting Crystal King's The Chef's Secret . Her debut, Feast of Sorrow, made my top 10 of 2017 and I'm so excited for this one. I'm hoping I'll have a very readerly weekend; my wife will likely be at the farm all weekend doing maple sugaring as well as caring for the new lambs and piglets. What are you reading this weekend?
She did not understand his words; she couldn't even attach them to the conversation they were having, but, like an animal, she understood the tone. Not forgiveness, not liking, but a kind of permission. The jacket description doesn't do this volume of nine short stories justice. The stories aren't of "girls behaving badly", like we're reading about out-of-control tweens or reckless-on-spring-break coeds. The central figures in these stories are individuals crushed under intense familial pressure: death, abuse, neglect (benign and otherwise). Rutting Season by Mandeliene Smith Scribner, 2019 Electronic ARC provided by publisher Smith's narrative style and easy characterization is envy-inducing; in a few paragraphs, she can convey a wealth of background. Mood and setting are bold, intense, impossible to ignore, and I read each story with a low-grade anxiety, desperate to know how things would shake out for each character. Of the nine, I was onl
Today's Wordless Wednesday . It's baby animal season on the farm, including the newest arrival to our family, Annie the rescue pup. She's about thirteen weeks old and appears to be mostly beagle. She's wild about the other animals on the farm and wants desperately to be best friends with the cats in our house. You can probably imagine how the cats have responded. Share a pretty view from your life today!
So Natives continued to rebel, and continued to die. Natives continued to rebel and continued to be imprisoned, to be tortured, to be executed. Natives continued to rebel. Terra nullius -- "empty land" -- was the doctrine with which white Europeans used as the basis for invading Australia. It was codified into Australian law until the 1990s, but the impact is still felt. A society based on dominance, genocide, and colonization can only respond in certain kinds of ways. Terra Nullius by Claire G. Coleman Small Beer Press, 2018 Copy from library Read Harder challenge Coleman's novel takes us to colonized Australia. Those who remember the invaders -- now the Settlers -- are grandparents; at least two generations have been born into a world of subservience and oppression. As when I first read Margaret Atwood's The Handmaiden's Tale , I struggled to understand if I was reading the past or the future; either possibility felt real. It took me about 12
being policed for being too poor too much a shade a color a shade of color too close to the root too close to the color the shade too close to the color of a beating being beaten beating heart -- from "the first time" Poetry doesn't have to be complicated or obscure. Poetry can pull out the sharp thorn of truth and hold it up in a way that would be pedantic or amateurish in fiction or essay. Poetry distills down what is so very individual into a sip that offers a brief flash of universal understanding. Monet's volume of poetry grabbed me with the title; it had been on my radar as one of the 2017 releases to look out for. It ticked a box, too, for the 2019 Read Harder challenge. I read it in one night, gulping, then spent another two weeks moving back through the pieces slowly. My Mother Was a Freedom Fighter by Aja Monet Haymarket Books, 2017 Copy from library Read Harder challenge Many pieces h
"I hate this city," she told the pillow, because she wouldn't tell him. Music as magic. 1988 and 2009. A story split between two fixed points, a friendship then and what it might be now. Set in Mexico City, this novel follows a young teen named Meche, a loner who adores music and is friends with two other loners, Sebastian and Daniela. When Meche discovers she can cast spells using records, her life is changed. Signal to Noise by Silvia Moreno-Garcia Solaris, 2015 Copy from library Read Harder challenge Initially, it seems this magical skill can only improve Meche's life, even though Sebastian and Daniela are less convinced. Angry teenagers wielding magic leads right where you can imagine, and I loved every minute of it. Moreno-Garcia beautifully articulates that awful, oppressive, unshakeable frustration one suffers as a teen, and the ugly wishes Meche manifests resonated with me so strongly. At times, Meche is so unlikable, but realistically so: y
me? a bruised ghost i concentrate on my teeth/ the roof of my mouth/ i'm tryna rub it smooth/ concentrate on not blinkin see how long I can go til my eyes need to shut. Anarcha was one of eleven slaves who were purchased by "father" of modern gynecology Dr Marion Sims for his research. Essentially torturing these women, Sims did his research (including surgeries) without offering pain relief or sedation. Our lauded study and history of medicine has for so long been polished of its shameful bits, but in this slender, intense volume of poetry, a name and voice is given to the very real, the very human sacrifice to our knowledge. Anarcha Speaks: A History in Poems by Dominique Christina Beacon Press, 2018 Personal copy It's impossible to call this an "enjoyable" read, but it is gutting, gripping, and necessary. Giving voice to the ignored, Christina makes it imperative we know and understand the humans behind any learning we've gained.
...for this world allows you no more than a cupful of dreams. So be stingy with your time. And run. Or something like that. I think if I had known manga was similar to graphic novels, I might not have waited so long to make my first attempt. As it were, thanks to Read Harder 2019 , I begged the internet to recommend some historical romance manga, and across the board, folks recommended this series. Holy crap, it was so charming. Emma , Vol. 01 by Kaoru Mori (森 薫) CMX, 2006 Copy from public library Historical Fiction and Read Harder challenges Set in 1885 London, our heroine, Emma, is a maid for a retired governess. The governess' former ward, William Jones, is now a young man tasked with managing his family's business and fortune. He's immediately smitten by the quiet Emma but social constraints prevent him from openly pursuing her. There's not much more to the story than that, and the delight is in William and Emma and their circles. William'