Monday, November 02, 2015

Where Is Your Bookmark? (11/03/2015)

Yesterday I began reading Jackie Copleton's A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding, and although I am still not too far into it, I am quite enjoying it. It's a nice change of pace from my recent reading.


From Amazon:
When Amaterasu Takahashi opens the door of her Philadelphia home to a badly scarred man claiming to be her grandson, she doesn’t believe him. Her grandson and her daughter, Yuko, perished nearly forty years ago during the bombing of Nagasaki. But the man carries with him a collection of sealed private letters that open a Pandora’s Box of family secrets Ama had sworn to leave behind when she fled Japan. She is forced to confront her memories of the years before the war: of the daughter she tried too hard to protect and the love affair that would drive them apart, and even further back, to the long, sake-pouring nights at a hostess bar where Ama first learned that a soft heart was a dangerous thing. Will Ama allow herself to believe in a miracle?

First Paragraph of A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding:

Even the kindness of the half-light could not hide his disfigurement. The man stood on my doorstep hunched against the chill of a winter morning. Despite the scarring, I could tell he was Japanese, in his forties or fifties. I had seen such burns before, blacker versions, in another life. He wore a suit, no coat, and held a briefcase on fingers fused together. he bowed his bald head low, cleared his throat and apologised for the intrusion. Years had passed since I last heard it but the southern Kyushu dialect was unmistakable. He asked if my name was Amaterasu Takahashi and, despite my apprehension, I nodded. The muscles of his face twitched, perhaps in a smile. 'Then I bring you good news.'

Teaser from page 6

I convinced myself an edited version of my past was necessary for a bearable life. I told myself I must not think too long on the mistakes I had made that led Yuko to the city's death zone. How else could I get up in the morning and face another day? How else could I endure the years as they trickled by, one too slowly following the other?



What do you think? Would you keep reading?  

What are you reading at the moment?  Is it anything you would recommend?

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

I switched up this week's week's  Top Ten Tuesday theme to make it easier for me. Especially given how busy work is right now and with all the Halloween craziness that thank goodness is now behind me. This week, I am featuring Top Ten Series I Have Only Read One Book Of But Am Eager to Dive Back Into over the past five years.

1.

I am anxious to see what Tessa Arlen will come up with after her cozy mystery, Death of a Dishonorable Gentleman, set in Edwardian England. The next novel in her series featuring Lady Montfort, Death Sits Down to Dinner, is due out in March of next year.

2. & 3.


I fell head over heels in love with Karen Marie Moning's writing when I read Darkfever, the first in her urban fantasy Fever series, and then Beyond the Highland Mist, the first in her paranormal romance Highlander series (to which no Highlander book has lived up to yet).  I do not know why I have not yet read the second in either series. Maybe I am afraid Bloodfever and To Tame a Highland Warrior won't live up to my expectations, given how much I enjoyed the first books in their respective series. That's silly though! I should just read them.

4.

I really enjoyed Jennifer Robson's Somewhere in France, a historical fiction novel set during World War I, which tells the story of a woman who becomes an ambulance driver on the front lines. After the War is the sequel, featuring the friend of Lily from the first book--Charlotte who is a military nurse. These books do not exactly fall into the series category, but I figured I would bend the rules a little, given the two books are connected.

5.

I read Louise Penny's A Trick of the Light, which I think is book #7 in her Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series, when the opportunity presented itself. I loved every minute of reading that book, and keep meaning to go back and start from the beginning with Still Life.

6.

Another series I jumped into the middle of  is Deborah Crombie's Duncan Kincaid and Gemma James series. I have read #14 in the series, No Mark Upon Her, which I just loved. One of these days I want to read A Share In Death and then the rest of the series--hopefully in order.

7.

I read A Game of Thrones, the first in the Song of Ice and Fire Saga by George R.R. Martin right after giving birth to my daughter and devoured it. I would really like to read the rest of the books eventually, and next up is A Clash of Kings.

8.

It took me a while to get to Kim Harrison's Dead Witch Walking, and once I did, I couldn't believe I waited so long. Still, I have only read the first book in the Hollows series to far. I need to get to The Good, The Bad, and the Undead.

9.

Gail Carriger's Soulless had come highly recommended, and I enjoyed it quite a bit. I am anxious to read the second book in the The Parasol Protectorate Series called Changeless.

10. I only just recently read Karen E. Olson's Hidden, featuring her computer hacker protagonist. I hear she is working on book three in the series already, which is good news for me! I just wish I didn't have to wait so long for book #2: Shadowed.

Have you read any of these? If you read series, are there any series you have read just one book of but would like to continue with the rest? 


© 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.

74 comments:

  1. A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding sounds good to me! I'm definitely intrigued so I'm adding it to my wishlist.

    I'd read several first book of a series but haven't follow up the rest for many reasons, and having too many books to read is the top reason. Other times I just feel like switching genres or storylines. Still, I know I'll get to them at some point.

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    1. Melody - I am too! The atomic bombings had such terrible consequences--I can't even imagine living through something like that or losing someone as a result. I am still not too far in, but it is an interesting story so far.

      I think my reasons for not being able to follow up are similar to yours in a lot of cases. So many books to read . . . At least we know we will never run out of books to read. :-)

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  2. I really hope these sophomore novels live up to your expectations! :-)

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    1. Chrissi - I have high hopes--hopefully not too high I'll be disappointed. LOL

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  3. A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding sounds like the kind of book I enjoy. The opening made me want to know what "good news" he is bringing, and the Teaser makes me want to know more about the character's past. Nice cover too.
    My Tuesday post features Emma Knows All.

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    1. Sandra - I like these kinds of books too. The story flows from present to past to back again, and I'm really enjoying it so far.

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  4. I would definitely like to keep reading A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding, secrets from the past are a big draw for me. I may well have to add this one to my wishlist.

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    1. Cleo - Yes, me too! There's just something about a story about secrets. I hope I end up liking it. So far, so good, at least!

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  5. I just accepted a pitch for this book -- now I'm extra glad I did -- the opener is good. I've enjoyed some of the series you have listed.

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    1. Beth - Oh good! It'll be interesting to read your thoughts on this one when you get to it. The story really appealed to me and I couldn't resist.

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  6. I loved A Clash of Kings though I still need to read the rest of the books. I also liked Changeless though I think Soulless was my favorite in the series. I am curious about the Jennifer Robson series. I love historical fiction and I've seen that one around but haven't picked it up yet.

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    1. Christina - I need to make time to read A Clash of Kings. I think the size is what puts me off. I really enjoyed the first book. I hope you will give Jennifer Robson's books a try. :-)

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  7. What a terrific intro - well written, and it just begs the reader to continue and find out more. Got to try this one at some point.

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    1. Diane - I really liked this opening as well, Diane. It actually starts with a definition--but I figured I'd start with the narrative. :-) I'm definitely invested in the story and characters so far.

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  8. I totally agree on the Tessa Arlen- -I liked her first one a lot as well. Looking forward to it!

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    1. Greg - Death of a Dishonorable Gentleman was really good. I'm glad you liked it too. I can't wait for the next book. I love the setting and time period.

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    1. Sarah - I like it too. I'm looking forward to getting more into the book.

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  10. I went through a period of reading books set in Japan (Memoirs Of A Geisha remaining my favourite). Intrigued by A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding, I'm hoping our library will have a copy.

    Out of the other books you feature I have read Dead Witch Walking and, I think, The Good, The Bad And The Undead.

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    1. Tracy - I think the historical aspect of this one is what drew me in particularly, although I do enjoy reading books about other countries and cultures too. I hope you are able to get your hands on a copy!

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  11. I'm supposed to be getting A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding soon so I'm glad to see you're enjoying it so far.

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    1. Kathy - I hope you like it! I look forward to reading your thoughts on it.

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  12. Oh, I love the opening lines and the premise. Who wouldn't be drawn in by that scenario?

    As for your Top Ten, I also read Still Life and want to read more of the series.

    Thanks for visiting my blog.

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    1. Laurel-Rain - That's how I feel too! I couldn't resist this book. Hopefully it will continue to be good the more I read.

      Louise Penny is quite popular, I know. I look forward to reading more of her series.

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  13. Based on the title and cover alone I would've never picked up this book but the intro and the teaser made me change my mind. Very interesting paragraphs! I would definitely keep reading. As a matter of fact, I may just add it to my TBR :)

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    1. Lia - You might like the older cover of the book better. :-) So far I am finding the book to be good. I love stories like this. I hop you like it if you do decide to read it!

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  14. Wow! So many great-sounding books to read. And available instantly. There's the downside to all this self-publishing technology — no way near enough time to read them all! And I'm retired! Here's my teaser: http://wp.me/p4DMf0-10B

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    1. Ms. M. - It's impossible to keep up with all the books we want to read, isn't it? We can have fun trying though. :-)

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  15. I don't think said character is the only one who dwells in the past; great teaser! I've also read only the first book in a few series and wish I had the time and day to read them all!

    My Teaser

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    1. Claudia - I think you'd be right. She's carried her secrets all these years. I hope she is able to finally let go at some point.

      Having more time to read would be a wonderful thing!

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  16. I can't imagine how you managed to only read one of Moning's Fever series. I devoured those books. The fifth one was a little longer than I thought it needed to be, but otherwise a fabulous series.

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    1. Suzie - I've asked myself that numerous times. I need to dive back in. I'm so glad to hear you loved the series.

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  17. Sounds like a great read. Hope you're enjoying it. Oh I have the Parasol Protectorate series but I'm missing book #2. :(

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    1. Nickle - It is good so far. I wish it were already lunch time so I could get back to it.

      I hope you are able to get a copy of #2 of the Parasol Protectorate series! My husband bought me the entire series knowing I wanted to read it. He's sweet that way. :-)

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  18. I like your intro, so I'd keep reading! In your top ten list, the Jennifer Robson book caught my eye. Lately, I've been interested in reading about World War I. Also, I'm a huge fan of Deborah Crombie's books. It seems like each one is better than the last!

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    1. Monica - I'm looking forward to reading more by Deborah Crombie and Jennifer Robson. I highly recommend Robson's Somewhere in France.It's more of a historical romance, and really good.

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  19. I just could not get into A Game of Thrones. With it's popularity and the popularity of the TV series (couldn't get into that either), I've been very tempted to try again. I have the 1st four books, lol. Carriger's one of my favorites too. I love the steampunk world.

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    1. Trisha - I read the book A Game of Thrones because I wanted to see the television show. I really liked the first season--although it was pretty dark and definitely not suitable for young eyes. I haven't seen any season but the first. I'm anxious to get to the rest of Carriger's series. I love the steampunk world too. :-)

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  20. I read about 100 pages of A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding recently, to participate in a chat with the author. I loved what I read and really need to get back to it.

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    1. Catherine - I hope you do continue with it! I just finished the most heart breaking scene. I'm sure it was among the pages you read. The bomb . . . No one should have to live through something like that.

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  21. I think A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding sounds like a really good book. I've not read anything with characters that have a connection to Nagasaki. Putting it on my list to watch for next month.

    As to your other lists - well, I'm sure you know that I want to suggest Louise Penny's series and also Deborah Crombie's series. Both such favorites of mine.

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    1. Kay - It is! I am at a very sad spot right now. Not exactly ideal for having to get back to work, but what can you do, right?

      I can see why there's so much fuss about Crombie and Penny. I really liked the books I've read by them. :-)

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  22. I love the teaser on this one and the blurb. I'll be curious to see what you think of the book as a whole. I definitely want to catch back up with Deborah Crombie's books and reread the older ones as well as start Louise Penny's books. Death Sits Down to Dinner sounds pretty good too.

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    1. Katherine - I hope I end up loving it. So far it's good, but it's still early yet. I already know it's an emotional read.

      Maybe next year I will go on a series binge to read some of these series . . . Famous last words. LOL

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  23. Out of all your great Top Ten, I'd suggest staying with Louise Penny. She is so good and so consistent in her writing that she hasn't disappointed me or slacked off in the ten novels she's written since Still Life.

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    1. Margot - It's good to know Louise Penny writes consistently good books. I know with many series there are stronger and weaker books depending and often series seem to start fading the longer they go on. At least that's my experience.

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  24. A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding sounds good, but I don't know if I would ever pick it up. Girl Who Reads

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    1. Donna H - I really like books like A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding. I used to read them more often than I do these days. I'm enjoying this one quite a bit so far.

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  25. Gah! So many books here that I want to talk about. First of all you simply must read A Share in Death and Still Life. Both are great reads although very different from one another. I loved Changeless but be warned that you will want the 3rd book right away. I need to finish that series myself along with so many others. I need to get back to Karen Marie Moning's series as well but now I want to try her highlander series first. Thanks for that lol! I'm stopping myself now because I could just keep going :)

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    1. Samantha - I should really make a point to read Still Life and A Share in Death soon. Maybe around the first of the year . . . That's good to know about Changeless. As it happens, I have the third book already! So, I'll be good to go. :-) I enjoyed Karen Marie Moning's first Highlander book. I am not a huge fan of Highlander books admittedly, but I did enjoy hers. I really want to get back to the Fever series though.

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  26. Tessa Arlen's books look fun - will have to check them out My TTT

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    1. Carrie - They are fun. I hope you do give them a try.

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    1. Yvonne - Thank you! I had fun coming up with it--although I was a bit rushed. I need extra hours in the week just to blog.

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  28. I am very interested in the book. You would will continue to love the Fever series!

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    1. 'Nise - I really need to get to Bloodfever. Moning turned me onto the Fae world, and now I love reading about them.

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  29. I really need to get to Gail Carriger's books! Both her young adult and adult series look like a lot of fun! Great list!
    Thanks for stopping by the The Local Muse

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    1. Mallory - I enjoyed Soulless quite a bit. I'm interested in her YA adult series too.

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  30. I devoured the Parasol Protectorate earlier this year- I only took a short breather before diving into the subsequent books in the series, so I admire your restraint. Now I want to read A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding too... your teasers were too effective. ;)
    ~ Litha Nelle

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    1. Litha Nelle - I'm not sure my restraint is worthy of admiration--maybe just too many distractions. :-) I am really liking A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding at the moment. I've only been able to read in fits and spurts. I'm hoping to settle in for some quality reading time this weekend.

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  31. Most definitely; I love the summary and the extract you posted. You've reminded me I haven't yet read Robson. I'm reading House of Shadows by Nicola Cornick and yes, I'd recommend it; it's wonderful.

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    1. Charlie - Robson's books are good light reading. I hope you are able to find time to try her books. A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding is a sad one so far--A lot of looking back into the past, which I expected.

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  32. I think I would keep reading A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding!

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  33. I had given Game of Thrones a try but struggled with it because it was too slow compared to the show. Yikes! It's still a book I want to read and savor, so I will pick it up sometime and give myself a longer period to read it in.

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    1. Athira - I rushed to read Game of Thrones because I wanted to read the book first. I didn't find it to be slow going, but I was also reading it while home with a newborn who didn't do much besides sleep and eat. I'm sure that helped make it seem to go faster. :-)

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  34. Ohh very intriguing teaser I really love it! Thank you for stopping by my blog. :)

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    1. Katiria - It was a good book--heart-wrenching in spots.

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  35. Interesting teaser thanks for sharing and stopping by my blog. :-)

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    1. Sharon - I enjoyed the book! Thanks for visiting.

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  36. I'm really interested in A Dictionary of Mutual Understanding - eager to hear your thoughts!

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    1. Lisa - I hope to post my review soon. I think some people might be put off by the format of the story, but I really liked it.

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  37. I didn't realize Jennifer Robson had a sequel to Somewhere in France. Thanks for turning me on to it! I just put it on hold at my local library.

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    1. Abookaddict - She does! I hope to read it one of these days. She has a new one coming out this next year too--but it's unrelated, I believe. Still a historical though.

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