Saturday, August 12, 2017

Saturday in the Garden | The Books Ahead of Me

I like to garden and generally putter around in my yard and my Saturday in the Garden posts serve as my pseudo- garden journal, plus round-up of my week in reading, watching and blogging.  Occasionally, I'll whine, rant or gush about something in a GAK section. 


It is so nice in Iowa right now and I took advantage and had breakfast on the veranda (i.e. the concrete pad there) this morning. And while the temperature and humidity have been great we continue to get little rain.  I've done a good job watering this year, so most of the plants are doing well, except for my tomatoes.  The Beam's Pear have slowly died one by one and the Patio Roma have continued to mostly produce tomatoes with blossom end rot.  I don't know why I have such trouble with tomatoes which are supposed to be pretty fool proof.  Well I guess I'm a bigger fool than even they can withstand.  My speculation is that I've got some tomato disease, like wilt, in the soil in all the beds and it doesn't seem to matter where I move them.  I've got one more spot I'll try them next year, fingers crossed.

Recently, for some reason, the number of my books marked as "read" on caught my eye.  I just broke the 800 book mark and while some of those are books I added from Before Goodreads (BG) most are those that I've logged since I joined in 2008.  It's not a particularly impressive number compared to most but it is still a lot of books and I found it making me feel really happy.  I suffer occasionally from the anxiety of realizing that there is a finite number of books I will get to read in my life (because if there is something to worry about, I'll worry about it without fail, it's my superpower). The fact that in this roughly 10 year period I've gotten to 700-750 of them feels really good, gives me hope and shifts my thoughts towards all the myriad of books I have in front of me in the years to come and away from what books I will miss.  



The TV slump is still going strong, though I have been watching Voltron a good bit this week. Netflix just released season 3 of the anime(?) that features a giant space robot made out of giant robotic lions.  I'm only a couple of episodes into season three and all sorts of surprising things are going down!  I'm going to start blaming all my character flaws on the fact that we only had idiotic, simplistic cartoons when I was young.


A couple of new podcasts have caught my ear.

Revisionist History by Malcolm Gladwell which investigates, analyzes and debunks some common truths held by society.  It's fascinating and at times depressing.

By the Book with Kristen Meinzer and Jolenta Greenberg is a fun podcast where the hosts pick a self-help book and follow it, to the letter for two weeks and report back on it.  It's funny but also seriously and thoughtfully evaluates each book's validity.  I really like the format and approach!


Finished Since the Last Time I Posted:

  • Prose and Cons (Magical Bookshop #2) by Amanda Flower:  A cozy mystery series set in a charming New York village with a magical bookshop.  
  • Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson:  This is the second memoir by "The Bloggess" that focuses specifically on Lawson's struggles with mental illness with a humorous touch.  I liked it better than her first book, personally, even though it has quite a bit of filler.  The filler is hilarious which helps and the substantive chapters are really good and thought-provoking.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender North and South by Gene Luen Yang: The most recent installment in the graphic novel series that continues Aang and the gang's adventures.  I think it's my favorite in the series thus far.
    • The Exiled Queen (Seven Realms #2) by Cinda Chima Williams: The continuation of the story started in The Demon King!  
    • The Likeness by Tana French: The second in the Dublin Murder Squad mystery series. This one features Cassie from In the Woods in the lead role.
    • Spirit Animals: Hunted by Maggie Stiefvater:  A 
    • Intuitive Eating by Tribole and Resch:  Non-fiction about eating psychology and biology.  I've been dipping in and out of it for the last few months!

    Added to the TBR:

    This is a list of books that I have added to my Goodreads TBR list this week.  It helps to burn the books I want to read a little more firmly into my mind, maybe get them on some other folks TBRs and gives me a chance to recognize a lot of the awesome bloggers that add stuff to my TBR!

    • Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz:  Heard about this on Book Riot's new podcast Read or Dead (all about mysteries).  I love Anthony Horowitz and this is homage to Agatha Christie!
    • The Moral Animal: Why We Are the Way We Are by Robert Wright:  I heard an interview with Robert Wright this week where he posits that humans current evolutionary state is not really designed to make us happy in the modern world.  It was a fascinating idea so I added this book which is one of his earliest works on Evolutionary Psychology.
    • Why Buddhism is True: The Science and Philosophy of Enlightenment by Robert Wright:  See above.  This is Wright's newest book which is what the interview was about.
    • The Surrender of Lady Jane by Marissa Day: I can't remember where I heard about this one but it's a fantasy romance about a British nobleman under the sway of the Faerie Queen Tatiana who sends him on a mission that requires him to seduce a respectable widow name Jane and GUESS WHAT HAPPENS????  I think they fall in love.  Just a wild speculation.
    • The Bride Behind the Curtain by Darcie Wilde: This is a Regency romance by an author I recently read a mystery by.  
    • The Punch Escrow by Tal M. Klein:  Can I tell you how much I want Teleportation to be a thing.  SO SO SO MUCH.  So science fiction books that feature teleportation and also how it might be evil are good ones for me to read.  This was very highly recommended by Mogsy at The Bibliosanctum.  

    On the BLOG since I last Posted:

    - Didn't actually post anything this week, though I composed many brilliant posts in my head. - 


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