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CHIPPEE's Photo CHIPPEE Posts: 18,448
2/5/20 7:26 A

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Pennsylvania Dutch Country Cooking by William Ways Weaver
4 stars
I never realized that some Pennsylvania Dutch foods are so spicy based on the influx of Caribbean people in the 1700’s.

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EMORRETI's Photo EMORRETI SparkPoints: (32,062)
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2/2/20 9:56 P

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January Reads:
Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows by Balli Kaur Jaswal - 5 stars
Still Alice by Lisa Genova - 5 stars
High Five by Janet Evanovich - 4.5 stars
Hot Six by Janet Evanovich - 4.5 stars
The Institute by Stephen King - 4.5 stars
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides - 4 stars
Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid - 3.5 stars
Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan- 3.5 stars
Visions of Sugar Plums by Janet Evanovich - 3.5 stars

Audiobooks:
You Need a Budget by Jesse Mecham - 2.5 stars
The Christmas Pact by Vi Keeland - 2.5 stars
The Half-Life of Marie Curie - 2.5 stars

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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/29/20 8:30 P

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Twenty One Truths About Love
By Matthew Dicks
3 stars
Clever idea, to write a whole novel using nothing but the lists that this guy composes compulsively. It made for an entertaining quick read, but I felt it lacked real depth. Just too cute for its own good.

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/29/20 5:00 A

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Turn Coat by Jim Butcher 4 stars

I figured we were supposed to know who the bad guy was, but this seems to be starting to take the series in a new-ish path based on how it ended. I don't know if that will be a good thing or not yet. I miss Bob who makes hardly any appearance in this one. Maybe his knowledge will be required more going forward?

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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JPISME's Photo JPISME Posts: 2,200
1/28/20 7:37 P

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1 The Library Book by Susan Orlean (for local book club - Once Upon)
2 Necessary Lies by Diane Chamberlain (for A Book Club)
3 The Book Charmer by Karen Hawkins (because I needed something lighter)
4 currently - The Mountain Between Us by Charles Martin (for local book club Once Upon)
5 currently - Broken Ground by Val McDermid (for local book club - Book Banter)
want to read - The Widows by Jess Montgomery (for local book club - Coffee & Clues)


Edited by: JPISME at: 1/28/2020 (19:40)
I believe in you.
Have a Happy Day! HUGS
JPISME formally peanutsmom96


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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/27/20 12:47 P

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An Ocean of Minutes
By Thea Lim
4 stars
I know that a lot of my reading friends would not enjoy this book, due to its speculative nature. However, the story is unique, quite original, and vastly imaginative. At its core, a love story, but with a dystopian framework and time splits taking it in an oddly unsettling direction. The ending is infused with such loss, yet much hope. Masterful.

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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MNLEONA's Photo MNLEONA Posts: 14,031
1/27/20 8:08 A

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Wild, Wild Rake by Janna MacGregor. It is an ARC. I give it a 4 star. My first read by her.

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Live in Harris, Minnesota
Born in Oakland, California,
Hometown is Monahans, Texas
CHIPPEE's Photo CHIPPEE Posts: 18,448
1/27/20 7:28 A

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The Quilter’s Holiday by Jennifer Chiaverini
3.5 stars
I like this series. It gives me a good feeling the way that Little Women does. Some of it was a rehash of previous books, but it was also a new story. It’s kind of like a visit with good friends.

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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/26/20 6:57 P

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Inside Out and Back Again
By Thanhha Lai
4 stars
JUNIOR FICTION
A beautiful little book that really makes you examine the way we treat “different”.

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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CHIPPEE's Photo CHIPPEE Posts: 18,448
1/25/20 7:14 A

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Paper Towns by John Green
2.5 stars
Young adult novel by the author of The Fault in Our Stars which I liked.

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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/24/20 12:20 P

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After the Quake by Haruki Murakami 3 stars

Like most compilations, some stories were better to me than others. I think my favorites were the last 2.


~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/23/20 2:00 P

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Little Fires Everywhere
By Celeste Ng
4 stars
Second time reading; this time for Book Club. I enjoyed it just as much the second time as I did the first! Complex characters and a really good story.

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/23/20 10:48 A

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The Inexplicable Logic of My Life
By Benjamin Alire Saenz
5 stars
This is an almost perfect YOUNG ADULT book. Totally engaging and hopeful and touching, sweet and funny and warm. I loved the characters and their stories. So good.

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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HONEYBEAR1031's Photo HONEYBEAR1031 Posts: 202
1/23/20 9:36 A

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Brothers in Blue trilogy
Jeanne St. James
5stars
It took me a few days to read all 3 books. It was an easy read and a cute story about the brothers all finding love.


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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/23/20 9:28 A

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Necessary Lies
By Diane Chamberlain
4 stars
This was an incredibly captivating read, one that I found myself thinking about even when I wasn’t actually reading it. I easily related to several of the characters, and was outraged at the callous way they were treated by “the system”, or by the way society in general had very specific expectations with regard to the behaviour of its females. The ending was almost too sunny to be realistic, and yet, I found myself quietly rejoicing in the reunion that closed the final chapter.

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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JOJO644's Photo JOJO644 SparkPoints: (4,340)
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1/22/20 9:03 P

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The Whispering Room (Jane Hawk Series #2)
by Dean Koontz
Four Stars

This is my second reading of this book. It is a powerful, futuristic book about nano implants and humans controlling other humans. And one woman who is fighting to stop these evil people from injecting more people with the implant. It's an amazing book and the author is amazing with the description of things and emotions. The only reason it isn't five stars is that sometimes the descriptions can get a bit too much. It is not a book you can read a little bit at a time, too enjoyable and too fast-paced.

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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/22/20 4:42 P

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Becoming by Michelle Obama 5 stars

I could only get the audiobook from my library and in hindsight, I'm very glad. It was like having her with me on my commutes. I learned a fair amount about White House "stuff", but mostly I learned how much I really like her. I may not agree with her on every point, but that's okay.

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/21/20 4:02 P

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Little Wolves
By Thomas Maltman
4 stars
Atmospheric and chilling; an exceptional read.

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/21/20 9:43 A

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Highlander : the history of the legendary Highland soldier by Timothy Newark 4 stars

Well, it turns out that I knew very little (nothing really) about this subject. I learned a lot, though I'm not sure how much I'll actually retain. It was interesting for the most part. Occasionally, I was confused and had to go back to review information - especially when merging of different groups was discussed.

There was some editorial issues, but I'll ignore those as it may be an issue with the ebook rather than the "real" book.


~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/19/20 11:38 A

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Vox
By Christina Dalcher
3 stars
The writing isn’t stellar, but the premise is intriguing. A cautionary tale for women - I cannot imagine that men would read this book and take it in the least way seriously. Women have long been muzzled, as women everywhere know. In this novel, the “bracelets“ give a concrete device to legitimize the silencing and further limit a woman’s freedom. Brainwashing becomes the norm. It is not really so far a cry from our current truth.

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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CHIPPEE's Photo CHIPPEE Posts: 18,448
1/19/20 11:38 A

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A Few of the Girls by Maeve Binchy
2.5 stars
A few good short stories, others seemed undeveloped and tedious. Didn’t bother to read the last few. Not up to her novels which I have enjoyed.

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CHIPPEE's Photo CHIPPEE Posts: 18,448
1/18/20 11:52 P

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Dreyer’s English by Benjamin Dreyer
5 stars
Informative,but also funny. Very enjoyable, especially for language geeks like me. emoticon

Edited by: CHIPPEE at: 1/19/2020 (11:39)
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CHIPPEE's Photo CHIPPEE Posts: 18,448
1/18/20 11:49 P

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Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moiarty
2.5 stars

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HERZINGM's Photo HERZINGM Posts: 278
1/18/20 11:19 A

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Twisted Twenty-Six by Janet Evanovich *** three stars

I have read the entire series, and get hold of the new one every fall to read. I think the entire series peaked at about #8, but I enjoy them as the easy, simple stories they are. Familiar characters that I like, some humorous interactions. This one was less funny than most of the books in the Stephanie Plum series, but was a decent read nonetheless.

Michelle :)Southwest Michigan EST

You must maintain unwavering faith that you can and will prevail in the end, regardless of the difficulties, AND at the same time, have the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be.
Jim Collins


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/13/20 5:35 P

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The Kill Fee by Fiona Veitch Smith 2 stars

I really enjoyed the first book in this series, but I thought this one was not nearly as well done. I know when authors write a series they have to write with the idea that not all readers will have read the previous books in the series, but this one seemed to repeat itself often. There were mentions to Aunt Dot's companion serving time more than once and in long winded ways.

Some of the characters didn't seem to be behaving in ways they had in the previous book. People change and yes, there was some of that, but there were some characters who seemed to have a change in personality.

Not sure if I will continue with this series. As it stands right now, I don't care enough about the players to feel a desire to find out what happens next.

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/9/20 12:13 P

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A Woman on Paper: Georgia O'Keeffe by Anita Pollitzer 3 stars

I didn't really learn much about O'Keefe from reading this. If you're looking for a biography, this isn't the book for you. In reality it's something closer to a memoir by the author about her friend. There are letters to/from O'Keefe and there is some history, but it's really a reflection of how Anita saw her dear friend. The other disappointment is the photographs that are included. I understand why some had to be in black and white, but some, especially the "location" shots from O'Keefe's home in the desert, could have been left out. They aren't the quality of Ansel Adams and if you're talking about the color of the landscape, it loses something.

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/8/20 10:09 P

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The Home For Unwanted Girls
By Joanna Goodman
4 stars
Reading this book was an interesting peek into the not-so-long-ago (mid-fifties-early 70s) social history of Canada. Quebec’s quest for separation, the FLQ, women’s’ restricted place in society, and most central to the story, the plight of unwed mothers and motherless children. The role of the Catholic Church is cast in a very bleak light, and one cannot help but feel anguish and anger on behalf of the book’s characters. A very engaging book.

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/8/20 3:26 P

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The ABC Murders by Agatha Christie 2 stars

Not one of my favorites. I didn't figure it out, though I did think one of the murders was not like the others. I just wasn't fond of this one and one of my issues had nothing to do with the story itself. Hasting leaves his wife to manage the estate (or whatever it was called) and comes back to London for a pretty long time playing detective. I kept thinking that he was not being very kind to his wife leaving her there (maybe she preferred it?) while he's sorta kind of ogling one of the group he's working on the crime solving with.

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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JOANNEJI's Photo JOANNEJI Posts: 5,638
1/6/20 5:44 P

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Women Rowing North: Navigating Life’s Currents and Flourishing as We Age
By Mary Pipher
3 stars
The first half of this book had me feeling fearful and unprepared for the years to come, but I decided to keep with it. I am glad I did, because the last 100 pages brought forward many of the beautiful aspects of aging. I learned a few things about myself, mostly nothing too pretty; whether I look forward to it or not, I am now on the doorstep of old age, and I will face it with whatever courage and joy I can muster!

~ Joanne

Location: Stettler, Alberta, Canada


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/5/20 7:35 P

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The Institute by Stephen King 4 stars

It's a strong 4 stars for me. I was sucked in pretty quickly. I'd planned to read about 40 pages/day. Friday I was at 40. I finished today. It wasn't the same kind of intense The Stand was, but this was good.

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/3/20 12:18 P

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I Am Half-Sick of Shadows by Alan Bradley 4 stars

I just adore Flavia!

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/3/20 9:19 A

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The Hollywood Book Club by Steven Rea 2 stars

WIcked short book of photographs, most if not all for film promotions or from movie scenes. Had nothing to do with stars who loved to read so much as stars who held books. Disappointed. I was hoping for a book about stars who loved to read and what sort of books they enjoyed. Some were mentioned (Bette Davis's husband filed for divorce citing her reading too much as the issue), but there was nothing more than a quick blurb about the shot or person.

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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HERZINGM's Photo HERZINGM Posts: 278
1/3/20 8:12 A

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Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky. ** 2 stars

I loved this book for about 2/3 of it, and then kept reading only because I had invested so much time. The 700 pages begins like a Stephen King classic, with a story reminiscent of The Stand (one of my all-time favorites). About 200 pages from the end, it deteriorates seriously, and there are so many ridiculous side angles and twists (I still don't understand why one chapter was not edited out!), I found myself thinking, "Oh, c'mon, just end it already!"

Not a great beginning for my 2020 reading list, but I will now move on to hopefully more enjoyable novels!

Michelle :)Southwest Michigan EST

You must maintain unwavering faith that you can and will prevail in the end, regardless of the difficulties, AND at the same time, have the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be.
Jim Collins


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
1/2/20 11:24 A

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Moon of the Crusted Snow by Waubgeshig Rice 5 stars

Whoa. That was an intense ride. Short book and I can't think of a thing I would have changed. Wow.

Someone in our group read this and posted about it. Can't remember who it was, but thank you.

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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CDCSMITH2013's Photo CDCSMITH2013 Posts: 2,235
12/31/19 4:31 A

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This is where we can keep track of the books we read this month and rate them. This is similar to the “what are you reading” thread, but we will include only those books we finish reading in the month. If you start a book the previous month but finish in the current month, it counts for the current month. Please list the title, author, and your rating. You can also add a short review if you’d like.

Let’s use a 5-star rating system:

1 star * Hated it~Not worth your time
2 stars ** OK~There were some redeeming qualities
3 stars *** Liked it~Enjoyable read
4 stars **** Really liked it~Definitely worth reading
5 stars ***** Loved it~Great read and would recommend to others

~ Cheryl

Co Leader of A Book Club team


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