Monday, February 02, 2015

Where Is Your Bookmark? (02/03/2015)

After a not so good week last week, I was ready for the weekend. A trip to the San Diego Safari Park (not to be confused with the San Diego Zoo) was just what we needed. It has been years since my husband and I were last there, and it was Mouse's first time.  She's been wanting to go back to a zoo for about a month now, and the weather and timing were just right.


After my dismal showing in audiobooks last year, I was reluctant to start something new. I had to drive across town to another office within my agency one day a couple weeks ago, however, and the radio just wasn't doing it for me. I am not a big audiobook listener. I am lucky to get in 20 minutes a day of listening on average during the work week--and that's if I am in the mood. So, it takes me a very long time to get through even a short audiobook.  Still, last Tuesday I was in the mood, and I began listening to Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor and Park.

Blurb from Goodreads:
Set over the course of one school year, this is the story of two star-crossed sixteen-year-olds—smart enough to know that first love almost never lasts, but brave and desperate enough to try.
I am still reading Miramont's Ghost by Elizabeth Hall.  It is easy to get lost in the pages when I do sit down to read it. I hope to finish it by the end of the week.

What are you reading this week?  



Every Tuesday Diane from Bibliophile By the Sea hosts 
First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, where  
participants share the first paragraph (or a few) of a 
book they are reading or thinking about reading soon.


Last week I began listening to Rainbow Rowell's young adult novel Eleanor and Park. I picked it partly because it was on the shorter side, but mostly because the audiobook came highly recommended by fellow book bloggers. I could relate to the first sentence--only instead of music, my nose was more likely to be stuck in a book.
XTC was no good for drowning out the morons at the back of the bus.
Park pressed his headphones into his ears. 
Tomorrow he was going to bring Skinny Puppy or The Misfits. Or maybe he'd make a special bus tape with as much screaming and wailing on it as possible. 
I admit the introduction didn't grab me right away. This is definitely one of those cases where continuing on is in your best interest even if the opening doesn't grab you--at least so far than I can tell.  I am about half way into the audiobook and enjoying it quite a bit. It's a beautiful story about friendship and young love.

Would you continue reading?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the lovely ladies at Broke and Bookish.

This weeks' Top Ten Tuesday theme is Top Ten Books I Can't Believe I Haven't Read From  the Mystery/Crime Fiction and Fantasy Genres. I chose crime fiction and fantasy because they are two of my favorite genres. While I could list books a couple miles (at least) long in either genre, I decided to split it down the middle and list five in each genre I can't believe I have yet to read. I tried to stay away from authors I have already read at least one book by--although that could make an entirely different list!

Crime Fiction (Mystery) Genre

1. The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith ~ I have had a copy of this pre-announcement that J.K. Rowling penned it, but have yet to read it. I have no other excuse than I was scared off by all the hype.

2. The Beekeeper's Apprentice (Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes #1) by Laurie R. King ~ I have heard nothing but great things about this series and have had this first book on my book shelf waiting to be read forever.  Well, it feels like forever. I don't know what's stopping me from reading it. I really don't.

3. Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear ~ I made my husband read the first book in this series set in post-World War I, featuring Maisie Dobbs, private investigator, but I have yet to. He says I will like it, and I am sure I will. I love the time period--and a female private eye to book?  Sounds like my kind of book.


4. The Keeper of Lost Causes by Jussi Adler-Olsen ~ Set in Copenhagen, this book, the first in a series, is described as being "Darkly humorous, propulsive, and atmospheric." Not to mention it comes highly recommended.

5. Strangers on a Train by Patricia Highsmith ~ For years I have wanted to give Patricia Highsmith a try.  She seems like one of those authors a crime fiction lover must read.  Where better than to start with her debut novel about two strangers who meet on a train?

Fantasy Genre

6. Midnight Never Come by Marie Brenanen - I want to read quite a few books by this author, admittedly, but this is the first book to make it onto my TBR shelves. Set in Elizabethan England and mix in the fae . . . Well, it's a wonder I haven't read this yet!

7. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss ~ the first in the Kingkiller Chronicles, The Name of the Wind is the first fantasy novel in a long while my husband fell in love with. Just at the word wizard, I was sold.

8. Fledgling by Octavia E. Bulter ~ This is yet another book which has been languishing on my shelf for too long.  It is about an amnesiac "genetically modified, 53-year-old vampire."

9. The City & the City by China Miéville ~ A mystery and fantasy novel rolled into one. I can't wait to read this one. I've heard much about the world building in this one.

10. The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett ~ The size of this series is what intimidates me, and one of the reasons I have yet to read The Color of Magic. I hear it's a fun book and series, however, and do want to give it a try.

Have you read any of these books? Would you recommend them?  What books would make your lists of books you cannot believe you haven't read yet?


© 2015, Wendy Runyon of Musings of a Bookish Kitty. All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Musings of a Bookish Kitty or Wendy's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.

86 comments:

  1. Strangers on a Train is an awesome read! Defiantly one to pick up if you like mystery/crime. I haven't read China Miéville's The City & the City, but I do like Un Lun Dun.
    http://www.readingbifrost.com/top-ten-tuesday-sci-fi-books-i-cant-believe-i-havent-read/

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    1. Savannah - I am glad to hear you liked Strangers on a Train! I need to move it up in my TBR pile.

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  2. I love your pictures. I also loved Eleanor and Park. I read it last year with my 15-year-old granddaughter. It was so touching. We both laughed and cried. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

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    1. Margot - Thank you! I am glad you loved Eleanor and Park! It's such a good story. I had a doctor's visit this morning and was able to listen on my way to the hospital and back. An extra dose of listening.

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  3. I enjoyed reading Eleanor and Park. I find their love story beautiful and I think the author has captured their voices perfectly. I'm looking forward to your review on it.

    The list you've for the crime thrillers and fantasy genres sound great! A few of them are on my list and I'm definitely looking forward to reading them in the near future.

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    1. Melody - Park and Eleanor are such great characters. The narration in the audio is excellent. The two narrators have become Eleanor and Park for me. I am glad to hear you enjoyed the book, Melody!

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  4. I've started reading Color of Magic...like a million times. It's not that I don't like...it's that I like it too much. Like I'm legit way too happy reading it and don't want to finish it, ahahah. It's the weirdest problem to have.

    Added Fledgling to my goodreads. SOUNDS AMAZING.

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    1. Girl with Bread - Haha! That is pretty funny. Hopefully someday you can finish it and then you can read it again. :-)

      Fledgling does sound good doesn't it? I look forward to reading it.

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  5. I totally forgot I had Midnight Never Come! It sounded so good, I don't know why I didn't read it. I do really want to read The Cuckoo's Calling. I think hype may have made me hesitant, too. Hopefully I'll get to read it soon. I've heard so many wonderful things about Name of the Wind but I haven't read it yet (and I do want to). Of course, I haven't read Eleanor & Park yet either, but I had it on a list a while ago. I'll get around to reading it. It's funny that the blurb you mentioned from it mentions The Misfits, my cousin is their original guitarist! I hope you get to read all the books on your list! Happy reading!

    Michelle @ Michelle's Minions

    My TTT
    (New follower)

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    1. Michelle - I see you have a young one too. :-)

      I don't know why I haven't read Midnight Never Come yet. It still sounds good. I need to make time for it.

      That's cool about your cousin having once been a Misfit!

      Thank you for following!

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  6. Loved the photos! I've been meaning to read (or listen to) Eleanor & Park -- hope you love it.

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    1. Beth - I managed to get some good ones this time. :-) I am loving Eleanor and Park so far. Something has to go drastically wrong for me to stop liking it at this point.

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  7. I loved Eleanor & Park on audio Wendy -- Hope u do as well. The intro wasn't great tho -- but trust me the rest is great.

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    1. Diane - It's so good! I'm grateful to all of you who recommended the audio version. :-)

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  8. Rainbow Rowell was a really popular author still is, but I haven't read any of his books yet. But you do have a great list.
    My Top Ten Tuesday!

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    1. Christine - This is my first by Rainbow Rowell. I admit I was hesitant to try anything by her because of all the hype. I won't make that mistake again. :-)

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  9. I don't read a lot of crime fiction/thirller either, but interestingly, I seem to be reading a lot of it lately. Of the 7 books I've read this year, three are of that genre, I am in the middle of another, and have even one more ready to go next!
    BTW, I don't do well with audiobooks, either! LOL!
    Today I'm featuring Vanessa and Her Sister by Priya Parmar.

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    1. Kim - Crime fiction is one of my favorite genres, especially when it comes to series. I can't resist a good mystery series.

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  10. I don't think I have ever been to San Diego, but now I would love to go to that zoo!

    Glad that you are enjoying Eleanor and Park. I thought it was pretty cute too. I didn't love it, but it came very close to that.

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    1. Athira - San Diego is beautiful. If you ever get a chance to go, I highly recommend it. The Safari Park is probably my favorite zoo. Many of the animals live in as natural environment as they can while in captivity. They do good research there as well, trying to save endangered animals. It's owned by the same group who owns the San Diego Zoo, which is probably my second favorite zoo. :-)

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  11. I've read enjoyed all of the authors and books in your mystery list except Highsmith. I need to remedy that, and I'm not sure why I have avoided her books.

    Rothfuss' Name of the Wind is excellent fantasy!

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    1. Jenclair - You read all the best books. :-) I think I have Name of the Wind in print, e-copy and audio. One way or another, I will be reading it!

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  12. Great photos! I loved listening to Eleanor & Park.

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    1. JoAnn - Thank you. :-) I'm really enjoying Eleanor and Park.

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  13. I highly recommend The Cuckoo's Calling and The Keeper of Lost Causes I loved them both. I bought Eleanor and Park recently to read on my Kindle at some point. Happy reading this week :)

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    1. Lindsay - I am glad to hear you loved both The Cuckoo's Calling and The Keeper of Lost Causes. I am looking forward to reading them someday. I hope you enjoy Eleanor and Park as much as I am!

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  14. What beautiful pictures! I bet you guys had a great time. OK, I notice that you and I both have STRANGERS ON A TRAIN on our lists. I tried the Ten on Tuesday thing today for the first time. I have read MAISIE DOBBS, and THE BEEKEEPER'S APPRENTICE. I enjoyed both, but I have not continued in either series. Not sure what that says. My book group will be discussing THE CUCKOO'S CALLING in May, so I'll be reading it this spring. And I've meant to read THE KEEPER OF LOST CAUSES. I have a book group friend who loves that series. I'm not much of a fantasy reader and don't know about those books.

    And maybe you just need a little more practice with the audiobooks. I love them, but I also know that not everyone is geared for them. :-)

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    1. Kay - Thanks! It was a very nice time. :-) I am glad you joined in on the Top Ten on Tuesday meme. I am glad you can recommend Maisie Dobbs and The Beekeeper's Apprentice. I really do want to read them at some point. There are so many series I have started but haven't yet continued. I tend not to think it reflects badly on the poor series though--just so many different books to try, you know?

      I hope your book group enjoys The Cuckoo's Calling!

      Lack of time to listen is the biggest obstacle in my way with audiobooks. If I had more time to listen, I could get more practice in.

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  15. Maisie Dobbs is my all time favorite mystery series. I highly recommend it. I'm really excited because the next book comes out in a few weeks.

    My Tuesday post: http://www.bookclublibrarian.com/2015/02/first-chapter-first-paragraph-92.html

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    1. Catherine - I'm glad to hear you enjoy the Maise Dobbs series, Catherine. I look forward to discovering what a gem it is for myself. :-)

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  16. Since Carl is walking with me now I get very little audiobook time in myself. Rainbow Rowell's books do make excellent audios.

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    1. Kathy - I'm so glad I decided to give her a try via audiobook. If all her narrators are as good as the ones in this Eleanor and Park, I will want to listen to them all.

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  17. I remember going to the San Diego Zoo as a child and being awestruck by the animals wandering around, instead of behind bars. The zebras frightened me a little...LOL.

    Now I wish I had taken my kids to it...we always seemed to be going somewhere else.

    I have Eleanor and Park on Sparky...and just finished reading Fangirl by this author, which I was very surprised to love a lot. And I have heard that Eleanor and Park is better...so, looking forward to it.

    Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog.

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    1. Laurel-Rain - My daughter seemed most excited to see the cheetah cubs. :-) I'm still getting used to the Wild Animal Park now being called the Safari Park. We ended up getting annual passes since it wasn't that much more than single day passes. We'll be able to get into both the Safari Park and the San Diego Zoo, the latter being a little farther from where we live than the Safari Park.

      I am looking forward to reading Fangirl at some point. I didn't expect to like Eleanor and Park as much as I am.

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  18. Of all the titles on you list, I have only read The Cuckoo's Calling. It was good and I have the next one, Silkworm, on my TBR list. I don't read much fantasy. I think the only reason is there are so many other titles to be read, I tend to skip over Fantasy. I haven't read Eleanor and Park either, nor have I ever been to the San Diego Safari Park. I was at Sea World years ago.

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    1. Judy - I want to read Silkworm at some point too. :-) I hope you like it when you read it.

      It's been years since I was last at Sea World. Brings back memories to think of it.

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  19. Wow, the zoo! How awesome to have that within driving distance.

    Like you, I consider myself a mystery reader, and yet of your 5 I've only read Maisie Dobbs. Just got all caught up last year. I own Cuckoo's Calling and The Beekeeper's Apprentice. The other two look fab. That sounds like a nice little project for this year.

    I started out listening to nonfiction audio. It felt more like listening to public radio. Have you read Quiet? or Mary Roach books? I listened to them and they are excellent.

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    1. Elizabeth - The Safari Park is within an hour and a half drive, so not far at all. The San Diego Zoo is probably about two hours away, give or take. The Anaheim Zoo is probably our closest zoo, but it's fairly small. And then there's the L.A. Zoo which is about an hour and a half away. So, lots of zoos to choose from. :-) The Safari Park is by far the best.

      I cannot listen to nonfiction in audiobook format. I tried, including one of Roach's books, and it was not a good experience. I do best with books where it doesn't matter if my focus strays occasionally or require much brain power.

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  20. Fell in love Rainbow Rowell with her book attachments. Haven't gotten to this yet, but I definitely will.

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    1. Suzie - I would like to read Attachments someday.

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  21. Looks like a great trip! I loved listening to Eleanor and Park!

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    1. Nise' - It was! It was a nice way to spend the day. :-) Eleanor and Park is so good!

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  22. I liked the intro, but the whole talking on the phone/time travel thing kind of turns me off. Which is why I haven't read it yet. I did like The Cuckoo's Calling!

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    1. Sarah - There's no time travel in Eleanor and Park and although they do talk on the phone now and then, it's not frequent. I wonder if you are thinking of another book? Landline, perhaps. I haven't read that one.

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  23. The Name of the Wind - OH YES! It's a true masterpiece and the prose is just beautiful.

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    1. Leona - I can't wait to read it. I really must make time for it soon.

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  24. Great TTT list! I really enjoyed The Name of the Wind (been meaning to re-read it as I have the second book sitting on my tbr pile) and The Colour of Magic :) Hope you enjoy these books when you get to them!

    Thanks for dropping by my TTT :)

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    1. Lianne - I am looking forward to reading both The Name of the Wind and The Color of Magic. I do hope I get to soon.

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  25. You live in such a beautiful area! I'm glad you had some fun family time at the safari park.

    Great list ... many of these titles are on my TBR list.

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    1. San Diego County is beautiful, both inland and on the coast. I would love to live there. At least it is close enough I can visit now and then. :-)

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  26. Ooh, I wish we had a safari park here, despite the fact that it would be covered in snow! I could use something fun like that. :)

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    1. Shaina - Haha! I'm trying to imagine a giraffe living in a snowy climate.

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  27. I did like the book and like you found it a slow starter. I went to the San Diego Zoo when I was 8, that was decades ago. It looks very different now. Have a nice week. kelley—the road goes ever ever on

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    1. Kelly - I am glad to hear you liked Eleanor and Park too! I haven't been to the San Diego Zoo in years. We're hoping to take Mouse there at some point. The Safari Park used to be the Wild Animal Park--which is a different park. It's just outside Escondido.

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  28. I need to read a couple of these books so bad!!! Here is my Top Ten Tuesday if you wanna check it out :) http://bookbabble.weebly.com/blog/top-ten-tuesday1

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    1. Elizabeth - I wish we had more time to read all the books we want. Then it would be easy. At least easier.

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  29. Thanks for sharing your photos! I've heard lots of good things about this book, and I am curious about this Rainbow Rowell, so I'd keep reading! Also, I like your Top Ten Tuesday list.

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    1. Monica - It took me a while to jump on the Rainbow Rowell bandwagon, but I'm glad I did. :-) I wonder though if I would enjoy it as much as I am if I'd read it in print . . .

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  30. Go read The Beekeeper's Apprentice immediately! It's great! Actually the whole seires is really strong though I'm several books behind. The main problem is that it's a very detailed series and the books come out only once a year or so. It's been probably 12 or 13 years since I've read the first book so I really need to do a reread but of course there's no time! Cuckoo's Calling sounds really good too. I'm looking forward to trying that and Strangers on a Train and Patrick Rothfuss and...! Love your zoo pictures! I adore zoos but have never been to the San Diego Zoo. Hope this week is going better!

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    1. Katherine - I'll move The Beekeeper's Apprentice up in my TBR pile. :-) At least I know there are quite a few books to read in the series so I won't run out anytime soon.

      I hope someday you will find your way in San Diego so you can visit both the San Diego Zoo and the San Diego Safari Park. I prefer the Safari Park, if I had to choose, but the zoo is nice too. :-)

      So far my week is going better, thank you for asking. I took today off as I had a post op doctor's visit in the morning and decided to treat myself to a vacation day. I got some things done and even stopped by the bookstore. Back to work tomorrow.

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  31. 1. I really think you should forget the hype, I was scared too that would live up to my expectations but it was a great read! You should get around to read it, it's solid detective/mystery novel that has such fascinating characters - you will enjoy it!

    7. I need to get around to read it too! But oh good the books on this series are so big and the series isn't even finished published yet.

    Deyse @ Bound with Words

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  32. Deyse - The Rothfuss books are big ones! I'm looking forward to reading both Cuckoo's Calling (thanks for recommending it so highly!) and The Name of the Wind. :-)

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  33. Everytime I see The Cuckoo's Calling in the bookstore I'm tempted to buy it (but I already have so many books at home that are still on my TBR list). Hope you enjoy it! - Maggie @ macarons & paperbacks

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    1. Maggie - I don't have that excuse since I already have a copy. :-) I know what you mean though. Those TBR books do demand our attention.

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  34. JK Rowling's Galbraith books are really good. I have enjoyed both of them. And I LOVED Eleanor and Park. Rainbow Rowell also wrote a book called Fangirl that's very very good. I just finished Catherine Schine's The Three Weissmans of Westport, which came out a couple years back and it's excellent. I'm now reading the book The Midwife, which is the basis for the PBS show Call the Midwife.

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    1. Karen - I've heard such great things about Rowling's mysteries. I am sure I will like them. I haven't read her fiction book, Casual Vacancy. I'm still not sure I want to, although I have heard that is good too. It just hasn't called my name yet.

      Eleanor and Park is so good. I can see why you loved it. I hope to finish it sometime in the next week or so. Now I want to read everything Rowell's written. I've heard good things about The Midwife. I may even have a copy on my shelf to read. I haven't seen the show. I've been watching The Killing, which I really like. It feels like a show that should be based on a book series, but I don't believe it was. I know it's a remake though. I'd love to see the original.

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    2. Apparently The Killing is a book series, but it was contracted as a series AFTER the TV show. Which seems a little backward, but why not?

      I tried to read Casual Vacancy. I couldn't get through it. So that's why I was so delighted to like Cuckoo's Calling.

      I just finished Stewart O'Nan's new book West of Sunset, which is a novelization of F. Scott Fitzgerald's last three years of his life. Very very very good.

      And I don't know if you know this but I will have a new book series starting this year. My suspense novel HIDDEN is the first, and it will be out sometime in the fall, I believe. I don't have an exact pub date yet, but it's about a fugitive computer hacker whose past finally catches up with her after 15 year of hiding out on Block Island, off the coast of Rhode Island.

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    3. Karen - It sometimes happens that way (books being based on TV shows). :-)

      I did notice you have a new book coming out! It sounds like it will be a good one.

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  35. Wow, the zoo sounds like a fun time, great pics!
    I have been taking advantage of my library's audio books and I will listen to them as I fall asleep at night. I've heard only good things about Rainbow Rowell.
    Great top ten list, I can't believe I haven't read The Cuckoo's Calling either.

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    1. Naida - Thank you! My daughter had been wanting to go to the zoo for awhile now, so it was a nice surprise for her. :-)

      I think it would drive me crazy to always have to find my place again if I fell asleep while listening to an audio book. I'd have to wear my headphones too . . . Not the most ideal situation. :-S

      We really must read The Cuckoo's Calling. Just bite the bullet and do it.

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  36. What a beautiful safari park. We've got an excellent one here but not so pretty and filled with more native to this area animals. I loved, loved Eleanor and Park - I had so many passages marked.

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    1. Lisa - It's a beautiful place. I am glad to hear you loved Eleanor and Park. It's such a touching story.

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  37. Looks like the safari was a success!!
    I really liked Cuckoo's Calling. I want to Give Maisie Dobbs a try too.

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  38. Wow, glad to see photos of this zoo and hear what it's like. My son lives in San Diego and we live in SW Riverside County, so we always pass the sign for this place and wondered about it. We already did the SD Zoo, and loved it, lots of walking! We'll have to check this Safari Park out next.
    Good books, as always. Some on my wishlist, some not, but haven't read any of them yet, except about 1/4 of The Name of the Wind, which I should get back to sometime when I'm in the mood for it.

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    1. Rita - I hope you make it the Safari Park one of these days. It's worth visiting.

      I'll be curious to know what you think of Name of the Wind when you get to it.

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  39. Mystery is a genre that I've really wanted to get into more recently. The Bee Keeper's Apprentice is on my TBR too!
    Thanks for stopping by The Local Muse

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    1. Mallory - It's supposed to be very good. Maybe we shouldn't put off reading it for too much longer. :-)

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  40. Oh the S.D. Safari Park is a neat open place, much to see. I went there long ago. I guess I'm not a big audiobook person. I do like them but rarely find the time for them unless we go on a long car journey. Enjoy your books. http://www.thecuecard.com

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    1. Susan - It really is. We weren't able to see everything in one visit. It has changed a lot since I was last there--I'm sure you'd find it changed too.

      I'm not a big audiobook person either, but I keep trying. It's definitely not my preferred way to read a book.

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  41. I recommend The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett. I decided to dive into the series and read the books in order. I'm now about 7 books in and loving it :)

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    1. Nikki-Ann - I am glad to hear you recommend The Color of Magic! I am looking forward to reading it. The size of the series is a bit intimidating, I admit. Especially considering how many other series I'm already reading. But what's one more, right?

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  42. The safari park looks fantastic. Is this different from the zoo? I've heard great things about the San Diego zoo. Glad you had a great time--I'm looking forward to the spring when we can head to the Fort Worth Zoo.

    The Colour of Magic is a lot of fun. I read the second one, too (think Light Fantastic or something like that). I just picked up the first Maisie Dobbs when it was on sale recently...but I'm so terrible at series reading! I still need to get back to Flavia de Luce!

    Hope you've had a great weekend and that next week is really great.

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    1. Trish - It's similar to the zoo, but much more open. Several of the animals live in the same "exhibit" and you can take a truck ride into that area feed the giraffes from the back of the truck. There's a little camp ground on grounds so you can stay overnight.

      My problem with series reading is that I read too many of them. I think I may be caught up with one or two series. :-S

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  43. The safari park looks beautiful! Oh you must read the Maisie Dobbs! It is such a great series. One that I'm actually caught up on which is totally rare for me. Ha. I'm eagerly awaiting the new book which I think comes out in March. I hope you are continuing to enjoy Eleanor & Park. I loved that one.

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    1. Iliana - It is a beautiful place. I hope we can go back soon. Hopefully I can read Maisie Dobbs soon since you all recommend it so highly. :-)

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