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2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge
Jill Elizabeth has read 25 books toward her goal of 175 books.
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Book Review: The New Neighbors by Simon Lelic

This was a weird read, full of perspective (and voice) shifts and an odd timeline – but I quite enjoyed it even though I usually prefer my stories to run a tad more linear than that implies… I think it’s because I was so intrigued from the outset – there was a lot of “this is not a ghost story” and “I always thought it was something more…” teaser-language in the opening bits, and as they were written as diary entries and I couldn’t exactly remember what the blurb had promised beyond a thriller with twists and turns, it really seemed like anything was possible for a hefty chunk of the book. Would it be paranormal? Psychosis? Gaslighting? A super-villain? Continue reading Book Review: The New Neighbors by Simon Lelic

Book Review: Eternal Life by Dara Horn

“… what are the odds that my granddaughter is the one doing this research? My granddaughter, of all the people in the entire world?”

” the odds of that are exactly 100%… Eventually everything will happen to us. You know that, Rachel. Your job is to never be surprised.”

What a gorgeous, imaginative, thoughtful, evocative story this was! I really love Horn’s writing style – and don’t know how I’ve not read her before – it’s full of marvelous encapsulations of what it means to live, to love, and to exist that are delicate and deft and woven so perfectly into the narration that the meaning sneaks up on you like a child in the night…

I’ve read a number of books about the perils of eternity, and frankly the theme has been feeling a bit stale. Continue reading Book Review: Eternal Life by Dara Horn

Interview with Craig Storti, Author of Why Travel Matters

I’m delighted to introduce you to Craig Storti and his thoughts on the powerful impact of travel. There is currently no book that explores the travel experience in such depth, makes such a strong case for travel, or offers a detailed guide for how to travel so the experience is truly life-changing for the traveler. Why Travel Matters is not about the trip but the consequences of the trip, about what actually happens to people when they travel. It explains why the individual who comes back from a journey is not the same one who set out—and why that’s important. Craig Storti infuses his own experiences traveling the world for 30+ years with quotations, insights, reflections, and commentary from famous travelers, great travel writers, historians and literary masters. Storti’s vast knowledge of the literature makes him an expert curator of astute gems from the likes of: St. Augustine, Mark Twain, Somerset Maugham, D. H. Lawrence, Bruce Chatwin, Aldous Huxley and more. Enjoy!

A Q&A with Craig Storti about Why Travel Matters: A Guide to the Life-Changing Effects of Travel

Why did you write this book?
I had to. Travel increases our understanding of our self and the world in ways no other human activity can. What could be more important than advancing such a noble cause? Continue reading Interview with Craig Storti, Author of Why Travel Matters

Book Review: Mister Tender’s Girl by Carter Wilson

I won this in the late Fall last year, and didn’t receive it until February. To be honest, I’d forgotten about it – then it suddenly arrived. Then it sat on my To Be Reviewed pile – because, again, forgotten…

I’m SO glad I picked it up – I read it in a marathon over a couple of days (I don’t get hours and hours at a time to read anymore, Life constantly interferes, so my marathons these days are longer than they used to be) and the creepy feeling of being watched never left me from the first pages to the last!

Carter Wilson has created a seriously creepy tale of paranoia, fear, love, trust, and twisted emotion that was a marvelous read full of spiderweb corners and pictures with eyes that follow you around the room. Continue reading Book Review: Mister Tender’s Girl by Carter Wilson

Book(s) Review(s): Hollow Man and Dominic by Mark Pryor

You’re in for a treat today – two books in a brilliant new-ish series from one of my favorite authors, the exceptionally talented Mark Pryor. I’ve read every book in his Hugo Marston series – it’s a marvelous mystery series featuring an ex-pat former CIA agent who is now living in Paris as the head of security for the American Embassy. The books are populated by a marvelously original cast of characters, the writing is fantastic (as is the pacing), and the story lines are all unique and can be read as stand-alone mysteries but there is a delicious build based on Hugo’s backstory that is finally (as of the latest, book 7) coming to a head and promises great things when it eventually erupts over the edges of everything and everyone…

But enough of that. This is about ANOTHER great Pryor series: The Hollow Man books.

The first, Hollow Man, introduces Dominic – a lawyer, Englishman-living-in-Texas, musician. Who also happens to be a psychopath. Seriously. Imagine Dexter but with lawyers. Then throw out that mental picture. Dominic is infinitely more complex and fascinating than any psychopath I’ve come across in fiction (and, odd though it is to realize this, there have been a lot of them, especially lately!) and because Pryor’s writing won’t leave you any room for comparisons – you’ll be too busy catching your breath at the casual reveals that are tossed out, Usual Suspects-style, at the most unsuspecting and innocent-seeming moments throughout the story… Continue reading Book(s) Review(s): Hollow Man and Dominic by Mark Pryor

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