Friday, October 09, 2009

TGIF: Wishlists & a Nearly Endless List of Questions for My Dear Readers

This week Rebecca's Musings Monday question:
Last week we talked about keeping a wishlist. Why not pull out that list and show us some of the books you’ve been eyeing?
Thank goodness no one is asking to take a peek at my TBR list (a list of all the unread books I own). Only two people besides myself have seen it. Kelly from The Written World and my husband. Both have been sworn to secrecy (not really, but it sounds menacing, doesn't it?). Since this week I am only being asked to offer a glimpse at my wish ist, I think I can swing it. It is a rather long list, and so I will only offer a sampling (and most of those listed I discovered through blogs).

The Islands of Divine Music by John Addiego
The Hero's Walk by Anita Rau Badami
Written in Bones: How Human Remains Unlock the Secrets of the Dead by Paul Bahn
The Manual of Detection by Jedediah Berry
The Day the Falls Stood Still by Cathy Marie Buchanan
A Person of Interest by Susan Choi
Sealing Their Fate: The Twenty-two Days That Decided World War II by David Downing
The Caveman's Valentine by George Dawes Green
The Magicians by Lev Grossman
31 Hours by Masha Hamilton
Smuggling Donkeys by David Helwig
The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane by Katherine Howe
The Swan Thieves by Elizabeth Kostova
Tethered by Amy MacKinnon
The City & The City by China Mieville
Sashenka by Simon Montefiore
Hick by Andrea Portes
My Father's Paradise: A Son's Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq by Ariel Sabar
The Sky Isn't Visible from Here: Scenes from a Life by Felicia C. Sullivan
The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters

Have you read any of these? If so, what did you think? What are some of the books on your wish list?

Barbara H asked BTT participants to come up with their own questions this week that we would like our visitors to answer, and, wouldn't you know it, I'm drawing a blank. I was full of ideas earlier in the week but I failed to write them down.

After a little brainstorming, this is what I've come up with for today:

1) Comfort Zones: What kind of book qualifies as being outside of your comfort zone? Do you ever read books outside of your comfort zone? Share a title of a book you read and enjoyed that is outside of your comfort zone.

2) TBR Piles: Share the titles of five books in your TBR (books you actually have on hand) pile.

3) Reading Count: My husband would like to know how many book you can actively read at once, not counting the books you've set aside to pick up again later.

4) Recommendations: Can anyone recommend a good crime fiction novel that falls under the LGBT category?

I would love to hear what you think! Go on, take a stab at a question or two, or all of them if you'd like!

Graphic courtesy of Tonya!
*Click on the image above graphic to get to the Friday Fill-In headquarters, hosted by Janet!*

1. Sweet dreams caress us in the night; nightmares make us tremble.

2. That pumpkin cheesecake was made especially for me.

3. Silliness is not my middle name despite what some people may try to tell you.

4. If I celebrated the holiday, I would dress up as my favorite literary character this Halloween.

5. Outstanding or not there are nights I just cannot keep my eyes open to finish that book.

6. A comment from you is what I want right now!

7. And as for the weekend, today I'm looking forward to taking in a movie and having a leisurely lunch with my husband; tomorrow my plans include building a pyramid with all my books right in the middle of the living room (no, not really) and Sunday, I want to do what every good reader does on a free day: read!

What are your plans for the weekend?

© 2009, 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.


  1. You knew some books from my wishlist since you commented on my MM post. :P Oh, I'd love to read The Magicians and The Little Stranger; both I have in my TBR pile! It's just a matter of time that I'd get to them, hehe.

    For the BTT questions, I'd go for the first question and say I rarely read sci-fi but I did enjoy reading Grimspace by Ann Aguirre.

    I hope you've a great weekend ahead, Wendy! :)

  2. That is an awesome list! I have read Sashenka and The Little Stranger...I have a few more on my shelves that match up too, and they are waiting patiently. I like both of those books. Sashenka was an interesting peek into Russia in WWI and WWII at the street level, from the viewpoint of a very strong female perspective. I listened to The Little Stranger on! Gothic, atmospheric, a little bit creepy, and of course the joy of the unreliable narrator. Some say that it is by far not Waters' best, but was my first.

  3. I love your TBR pile. I must see it one day in a physical form... :)

    Great list of books there! I always have way too many books that I want, too. And, I mean, it isn't like I don't have books to read!

    Have a great weekend, Wendy!

  4. Yum! Pumpkin cheesecake! Happy Friday!

  5. Here's the comment - now can I have a slice? We have similar plans for Sunday...
    Here's mine

  6. I don't think I've even heard of any of the ones on your wish list! Okay, now I'm craving cheesecake lol.

  7. Wishlist? I currently have 256 books on my wishlist. Oh dear. I'm most eager to read Shop Class as Soulcraft. Also, Margaret Atwood's new book. And A.D., about Katrina. Plus a book about play....Well, and then there is....Yep, you get the picture.

  8. Why does looking at or even reading someone's TBR pile/list give me a sigh of pleasure? I am easy to please, I guess ;o)

    1. This year has been one in which I have read out of my comfort zone with fantasy and sci-fi and have been plesantly surprised.

    2. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
    Chin-Up Honey by Curtiss Ann Matlock
    The Last Work by Kathy Herman
    Pride & Prejudice and Zombies by JA and Seth Graham Smith
    Emily's Ghost by Denise Giardina

    3. I can read three books at one time.
    If I try any more than that, one is always pushed aside.

    Have a great weekend.

  9. I hope The Day the Falls Stood Still (my debut novel) makes it off your TBR list.

    1. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao - liked, but didn't love it. The violence was a little graphic for my liking.

    2. Mistress of the Sun, A Tale of Love and Darkness, The Places In Between, Year of the Flood, The Brutal Telling

    3. 1 for pleasure, 1 for historical research

    4. The Brutal Telling was just picked by Barnes & Noble as a recommends selection. I've heard it's smart and thrilling.


  10. I think I've read as many as 6 or 7 books at the same time. That gets to be a bit much though. Now it's more like 4.
    Books in my current TBR:
    The Knight by Steven James
    The Second Opinion by Michael Palmer
    It's Not My Fault by Henry Cloud
    Authentic Faith by Gary Thomas
    Ends of the Earth by Tim Downs

  11. Melody - It's always about the time, isn't it? There's never enough reading time. I wonder if we'd ever be happy, even with more. LOL We're greedy little readers.

    I really need to read more science fiction. It's been awhile since my last experience with it.

    Have a great weekend!

    Sandy - It was your review of Sashenka that tempted me enough to put the book on my wish list, Sandy. :-) Your descriptions of it and The Little Stranger are tempting me to move them over to my TBR list, so please stop. LOL I'm trying to be good and not buy books in hard cover unless I can get them at a discount price lower than I could if I waited for them to come out in paperpack. That's the rule anyway. How good I am at following it is going to be another issue.

    Kelly - It's a mess right now. I need to straighten it up.

    I'm with you on not needing any more books to read and yet wanting to read so many more that are out there.

    I hope you have a great weekend too!

    Jodi - It's so good too. Yum! Have a good Friday!

    Snowbell - LOL Thank you for commenting. I look forward to reading your responses to the Fill-In's. :-)

  12. I wish I had some of your wishlist books to send you. I've read THE CITY AND THE CITY and MY FATHER'S PARADISE- loved both. As far as your other questions, I can read a max of 3 books simultaneously and not lose track. What happens most often is, I'll have a few going and then one will really get my attention and I'll focus on that one until it's done.

  13. Jen - I probably should have pared down my list for this exercise a little more. :-)

    I'm a big fan of pumpkin anything and so this is my favorite time of year. :-)

    Debnance - I actually have two wishlists going right now and am not sure what the final count would be on them. I'm sure it's pretty high. :-) Margaret Atwood's new book does look good. I still have yet to read anything by her.

    Nise - Haha! It does me too.

    I really enjoy reading fantasy. I need to read more science fiction. It's been too long.

    The Graveyard Book is in my TBR pile too. One of these days I'll get to it. :-)

    Two seems to be my limit, but I still prefer to stick to just one. I tried three once but wasn't very successful.

    I hope you have a great weekend too!

    Cathy - Thank you for dropping by! I've been reading many of the reviews of your book and each one has me even more interested in reading your book. I have a special place in my heart for Niagara Falls. I'm not buying hardcover books at the moment, so as soon as your book comes out in paperback, I'll be scooping up a copy to read. :-)

    I've been really wanting to read Mistress of the Sun and have hard great things about Louise Penny's books. Thank you for the recommendation!

    When I juggle two books, one is usually nonfiction and the other fiction.

    Twiga - You can't see me, but my eyes are popping out. I can barely juggle two books at a time. I tend to get so wrapped up in a book that I don't have any interest in reading any others.

    Looks like you have some fun reading ahead of you!

  14. Marie - That's a sweet thought! I haven't had a chance to read too many people's lists but was thinking it would be a great way to weed out books; if it's on someone's wishlist, maybe I could pass on the book to them if I have it still.

    I'm so glad you enjoyed The City and the City and My Father's Paradise. They both sound so good.

    I seem to only be able to stick with two books at a time at most, and I like them to be very different from one another. More often than not though, I only read one at once. I don't always do well with so many appetizing choices and so sticking to one book makes things so much easier for me.

  15. I've got quite a few of those books on my wishlist as well.

    As for books outside my comfort zone I'd have to say self help type books and I can't even give you a title because I totally avoid them. lol.

    5 books on hand right now-even right beside me are:
    1. The Last Will of Moira Leahy
    2. God is an Englishman
    3. The Winter of Our Discontent
    4. Highland Rebel
    5. Pendragon's Banner

    I can read about 5 books at a time. I'll read a bit in one and then move on to another. That's why sometimes I don't have a review for a while and then there will be this whole bunch in a row. lol.

    If you haven't gotten a copy of The Day The Falls STood Still I'm pretty sure I still have my ARC so if you don't mind that you're welcome to my copy.

  16. I just set up an "official" Wish List collection in LibraryThing, but it only goes back to about June of this year - it's only got 31 titles on it :-). Speaking of which, 31 Hours is on my list too. I have The Day the Falls Stood Still on my Kindle.

    Now for the BTT questions:
    1) Most genre fiction is outside my comfort zone, with paranormal romance probably being the furthest out - I haven't read any of it. I do sometimes dabble in mysteries, and I like elements of suspense in other forms of fiction.

    2) I currently have 233 books in my LT "To Read" collection, which means I own all of them - they're all here, if you're curious :-).

    3) I can't read more than two books at a time, and I prefer to be monogamous :-).

    #5 on your Fill-ins is the story of my life :-)!

    Enjoy your weekend, Wendy!

  17. Though I've yet to read it, I'm still going to say you should get The Little Stranger ASAP :P

    As for glbtq crime fiction, the Lambda Award has a mystery/crime category if I'm not mistaken, so you could take a look at recent winners and nominees!

  18. I recommend Gossip by Christopher Bram for crime fiction under LGBT category. It's a mix of politics, gay life, and twists. Hope you enjoy! :)

  19. I'm for anything cheesecake.

    One book at a time, although I've been known to read two at a time, one being more portable than the other.

    I'd say romance novels were out of my comfort zone. I invariably end up flinging them across the room snorting in disbelief.

  20. Dar - Self-help books definitely do not appeal to everyone--not to mention they tend to be very specific.

    You've got some great books in your TBR pile! I'm especially looking forward to your thoughts on God is an Englishman.

    I definitely didn't inherit that multiple books at once gene. LOL

    Florinda - Maybe I'll spend a little quality time on LT this weekend too and set up my wishlist there too.

    Both 31 Hours and The Day the Falls Stood Still sound so good, don't they?

    I'm real picky about the paranormal books I will read. I don't care for the ones that are really heavy in the romance.

    My TBR list is that easy to find too. :-) I don't think my "To Read" list is quite up to date though.

    I tend to be a monogamous reader more often than not too.

    I hope you have a great weekend, Florinda!

    Nymeth - Haha! The Little Stranger sounds like it will be really good.

    I'll definitely look up the Lambda Awards and see what I can fine. Thanks!

    Matt - Thank you for the recommendation, Matt! I'll definitely give Gossip a try.

    Carrie (Patience) - Yes, I can't resist a good cheesecake. :-)

    Ah, yes! Portability can be an issue. I took a smaller book with me yesterday because the book I'm in the middle of is too big to lug around in my purse right now. I didn't actually start the second book though so I'm still just reading the one. :-)

    Romance can push the edges of my comfort zone sometimes, depending on the book.

  21. 1. comfort zone. I think Romance is definetly outside my comfort zone...and I have never read a pure romance book.

    2. The Constant Gradener by John le Carre
    Howl's Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones
    The Grirl Who Loved Tom Gordon by Stephen King
    Hoshi Yori Ten Yori by Michiyo Akaishi

    3. just 1 book at the time

    4.what's LGBT?

  22. I only read one book at a time and lately I seem to barely even be able to concentrate on that one!

    Love your weekend plans. I was planning on an open, relaxing weekend but then I remembered I have bowling tomorrow night and as I was leaving school I was told I DID need to do progress reports that were supposed to go home today. Hmmm... bye-bye relaxing!

  23. Great wish list! I listened to The Little Stranger a couple of months ago. It was very good. I need to get my review for it written - I am months behind on my audiobook reviews.
    I loved your Friday Fill-in answers!! I haven't done that meme forever! I need to get back to it.
    Have a great weekend!

  24. Novroz - I've been wanting to read The Constant Gardener. It's one of my favorite movies. The other books on your TBR pile sound good too.

    I tend to read one book at a time too, although sometimes two. I prefer to stick to one though.

    LGBT stands for Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transexual.

    Kristie - I know the feeling! Sometimes it is hard to settle in with even that one book, especially when a slump is coming on--or worse yet, in full swing.

    Bowling sounds fun. I hope you have fun. Not so fun in regards to those progress reports though. Good luck with that. Get that done with as soon as you can so you can enjoy the rest of your weekend. :-)

    April - I'm looking forward to one day reading The Little Stranger. I've yet to read anything by Sarah Waters. I need to remedy that. I hope you have a great weekend too, April!

  25. I feel so honored that you included my memoir (The Sky Isn't Visible from Here) in your auspicious round-up. I know I'm hardly biased, but if you do end up reading it I hope you enjoy it.

    Warmly, Felicia

    P.S. I should mention that I have a delicious little kitty (well, she's quite big) named Sophie.

  26. You haven't read anything by Sarah Waters?? I just finished The Little Stranger, it's a bit different from her others, but still good. You should definitely read'll almost work for the LGBT crime fiction recommendation you're looking for. There's definitely some crime, but it's more historical fiction.

    I'll send you The Little Stranger if you'd me!

  27. 1. Horror is definitely outside my comfort zone - I read a horror novel called Mine (can't remember the author) in college because a boyfriend recommended it and it gave me nightmares for weeks!

    2. The Financial Lives of Poets by Jess Walter
    Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick
    Wait Until Twilight by Sang Pak
    The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery
    Forever by Pete Hamill

    3. Right now I'm reading four print books and listening to one audiobook.

    4. Laurie R. King has a series of mysteries about a lesbian police officer in San Francisco. The first one is A Grave Talent. I haven't read any of this series yet, but I love her Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes series.

    Have a great weekend, Wendy!

  28. Felicia - Thank you for dropping in and commenting! I've heard wonderful things about your memoir and do hope I get a chance to read it one of these days.

    Sophie sounds adorable. My Anya has gotten so big. She's tiny in the photos in my header, but she's bigger than my older cat now.

    Jill (Softdrink) - I can't believe it either. I was so in love with the idea of Night Watch when it first came out, but it took me so long to get a copy that I still haven't gotten to it. I do want to read Fingersmith as well. Everything she writes sounds so good to me. :-)

    Carrie (B&M) - I like some horror--the kind that is more thriller than gore. I'm very picky about my horror, you could say. :-)

    I really want to read Barbery's book. I've heard such great things about it.

    I feel like such a slacker with so many of you reading multiple books at once. LOL

    Thank you for the recommendation! I've heard of Laurie King, but hadn't known about her series about the police officer in San Francisco. I'll definitely check it out!

    I hope you have a great weekend too, Carrie!

  29. You did come up with quite a few questions for BTT, didn't you? I don't have answers for all of them but the first one I will answer. YA is definitely outside my comfort zone in a way that I really don't enjoy it as much as other people seem to. I did try and keep trying (read the Wicked Lovely trilogy, Forest of Hands and Teeth and so on) but I still don't like it so much. The only book I truly enjoyed from the YA was The Book Thief.

  30. Felicia - Thank you! I think she knows it too. :-)

    Lily - I kind of went overboard there, didn't I? I'm with you when it comes to YA. I have enjoyed some, but others not so much. I would love to be swept up in the YA craze like so many other bloggers out there, but it just hasn't happened. That's okay though. We all have different tastes and preferences. Nothing wrong with that. :-)

  31. I'm afraid I can't really help you with your questions. I haven't read the listed books, I don't currently have many books on hand, and I stopped reading a number of books simultaneously a long time ago (though I am currently reading 2 books, though there's a reason for it...).

    As for books that fall outside my comfort zone... hm. There are types of books I don't typically read because I don't enjoy the type but I'm not sure that counts as outside my comfort zone... It's a hard thing to define, no?

  32. The City & The City was one of those books that just had me in awe - I really enjoyed it.

    How many books do I usually read at one time? Between two and three, plus an audiobook (but only one audiobook at a time).

    It's Canadian Thanksgiving this weekend; my husband's been cooking up a storm! We're brining the turkey for the first time ever, and keeping our fingers crossed that it will be good!

  33. Anonymous Child - I haven't really found a hard and fast definition for what a comfort zone is. I think a lot of people I've come across just take it to mean books they do not normally gravitate towards and sometimes even avoid or don't especially like.

    Belle - I am glad to hear you enjoyed The City & The City, Belle. I've been wanting to read that one since my husband first told me about it.

    Happy Thanksgiving! I hope dinner turned our to be delicious!

  34. I've read 31 HOURS and ISLANDS OF DIVINE MUSIC from your wish list, and really liked both of them.

    It's a super list - many of the books are ones I covet, and I'll be taking a closer look at some on your list that are new to me.

  35. I really like reading books out of my comfort zone. Makes you think.

    I can read 3 books at once. One a hard book, one audio, and one like a self-help book. If I do those three I don't get mixed up.

    Books I have on hand to read.. Well, alot and too many to list but here's some of the next reads I want to get started on.

    The Eleventh Victim by Nancy Grace
    The Novelist by Angela Hunt
    The Immortal by Angela Hunt
    The Nativity Story by Angela Hunt
    The Truth Teller by Anela Hunt
    The Elevator by Angela Hunt
    (Yes, I just discovered Angela Hunt and an excellent writer)

    Other books I've recently read I have on hand...
    The Fairlawn Series and Uncharted and several others by Angela Hunt (Love all these)
    Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
    The Scarlet Thread by Francine Rivers
    True Colors by Kristin Hannah (I think that's the name)
    A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson
    And many others

  36. Dawn - I've heard such wonderful thing about both books. I do hope someday I'll be able to read them. There are just too many books out there I want to read. I wouldn't have it any other way though. Better to have too many choices than too few.

    lv2scpbk - Thanks for answering some of my questions! Reading books outside of one's comfort zone definitely can be a good thing. It can open up entirely new horizons.

    I have a friend who loves Angela Hunt's books and I'm glad you are enjoying her books as well!

  37. I have read The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane by Katherine Howe, My Father's Paradise: A Son's Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq by Ariel Sabar. Liked both. I consider both as two best reads of 2009.

    The Magicians by Lev Grossman,I plan to read it for the readathon.

    Yes, I read a lot of books out of my comfort zones. Difficult books don't bother me at all.

  38. Gautami - I am glad you enjoyed both My Father's Paradise and The Physick Book of Deliverance, Gautami! I had a coupon for 40% off and decided to go ahead and My Father's Paradise now that it's out in paperback. :-)

  39. I haven't read any of the books on your list.

    Scary books are outside my comfort zone, but I recently enjoyed Fatal Illusions by Adam Blumer. I don't care for sports books, but Heir to a Dream by Pete Maravich was great as was Comeback and When You Can't Come Back by Dave Dravecky.

    On my literal TBR pile: How to Read Slowly (I am hoping it will help me get more out of non-fiction), Plain Perfect, American Haven, My Heart Remembers, Dr. Frau: A Woman Doctor Among the Amish.

    I often have three books going at a time.

  40. Barbara - I like some scary books but not all. It depends on what kind of scary it is. :-) I'm not familiar with Adam Blumer. I'll have to look Fatal Illusions up!

  41. The most I can read is 4 at a time. Two print books and two audiobooks. I usually have an audio CD in the van and I also listen to one at home. I have to have both audios going because otherwise if I take them out of the CD player I always forget where I am!

  42. Michelle - Four is a lot to read at one time. Especially compared to my one or at the very most two. :-)

  43. That's why I don't make a list of my TBR books. It would scare me. My hubby gets to look at my 3 shelves full of unread books though.

  44. Melissa - I had to start keeping a list of my TBR books because I have so many. If I didn't, I'd end up with duplicates.


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