Wednesday, August 10, 2022

There's More to France Than Paris: The Loire Valley

My sister and I spent the first couple of weeks of April in Paris, and then our husbands joined us for the last ten days in the Loire Valley. My sister often told us how beautiful it was there. She was right. I've discovered that, though it is a different sort of beautiful, the Loire Valley is just as beautiful as Paris.

We stayed in a lovely old home located right at the confluence of the Loire and the Vienne Rivers in Candes-Saint Martin. 

What a view we had out the window.

For more wordless photos, go to Wordless Wednesday.

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where you can share new words that you’ve encountered, or spotlight words you love.  Feel free to get creative! It was first created by Kathy over at Bermuda Onion and is now hosted at Elza Reads.

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Book Titles that Are So Complex and Oddly Compelling that You Can't Seem to Stop Yourself from Reading the Story

Sometimes I think I choose books, not by the cover as many of us do, but by the title. I love complex titles. I find complex titles oddly compelling. And some of them I chose mostly for the title are amazing stories that live up to the title. Like these...

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No-Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sleep? by Philip K. Dick

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle

Hank the Cowdog #8: The Case of the One-Eyed Killer Stud Horse by John R. Erickson

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami

The Gold Bug Variations by Richard Powers

The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundura

All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten by Robert Fulghum

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry into Values by Robert Pirsig

I haven't read these yet, but I find myself wanting to find them and read them right now...just because of the titles...

After the Wreck, I Picked Myself Up, Spread My Wings, and Flew Away by Joyce Carol Oates

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

If on a Winter's Night a Traveller by Italo Calvino

And, if you are curious, 

Guinness Book of World Records says the longest book title is a book by N. Srinivasan. The book has 4,558 words beginning with Stock Price Prediction, a Referential Approach on How to Predict the Stock Price Using... Yes, complex, but not oddly compelling...

Have you read any of these?


What favorite reads of yours have complex and oddly compelling titles?

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. Each Tuesday That Artsy Reader Girl assigns a topic and then post her top ten list that fits that topic. You’re more than welcome to join her and create your own top ten (or 2, 5, 20, etc.) list as well. Feel free to put a unique spin on the topic to make it work for you! Please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own post so that others know where to find more information.   

Saturday, August 6, 2022

The Sunday Salon: Back to the Y, plus Gratitude Daily and Happier Now


My friend, Rae of Powerful Women Readers, went to an author reading for Alda P. Dobbs, and she brought me a copy of Dobbs' book, Barefoot Dreams of Petra Luna, for my granddaughter Annie. (Shhh...don't tell Rae, but I couldn't resist reading Barefoot Dreams before I had to give the book to Annie, so I did last week.) I finished the pop-up version of Le Petit Prince (wonderful!) that I brought home from France in April, and I also listened to Nataly Kogan's Gratitude Daily and Happier Now

The links take you to my reviews.

Another Year of Wonder: Classical Music for Everyday by Clemency Burton Hill (Nonfiction)
Hard Times: An Oral History of the Great Depression by Studs Terkel (Nonfiction)
The Mill on the Floss by George Eliot (Chapter-a-Day)
The Stardust Thief by Chelsea Abdullah (Fantasy)
How the Word is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America by Clint Smith (Nonfiction)

Last week I posted here at Readerbuzz:

Coming Soon at the Cybils Awards:

Apply soon to be a Cybils Award judge.
Nominate books for the Cybils Awards soon.

Good Thing #1

Prodded by my friend Karen, 
I've gone back to the Y
So far, I've tried High Intensity Interval Training, 
Strong Core, and Zumba. 

Good Thing #2

Only two episodes left! 
Love the Gilmore Girls.

Good Thing #3

I am hoping to go up to Big Sandy
to spend a little time
with grandchildren Annie and Wyatt soon.

I'm happy you joined us here at the Sunday Salon. Sunday Salon is a place to link up and to share what we have been doing during the week. It's a great way to visit other blogs and join in the conversations going on there. 

Some of the things we often talk about at the Sunday Salon:

  • What was your week like?
  • Read any good books? Tell us about them.
  • What other bookish things did you do? 
  • What else is going on in your life?

Other places where you may like to link up over the weekend are below. Click on the picture to visit the site.


My linkup for Sunday Salon is below. 

Thursday, August 4, 2022

Happy 10th Birthday, Classics Club!


10 years ago, The Classic Club Blog was born!

To celebrate our 10 years of blogging about Classics, we want to know more about YOU. New members and old.

  • Share a link to your blog and/or classic club list/s.
  • Answer the 10 questions below.
  • As always, we are very flexible about how and when you do this.
  • Tweek, add or subtract the questions to suit you best.
  • Have fun!

When did you join the Classics Club? 
I joined The Classics Club in January of 2018
I've been a member for four and a half years.
So far, I've read 144 classics for the club. 

What is the best classic book you’ve read for the club so far? Why?

The best classic book I've read for the club so far is Moby Dick (link takes you to my full review). 
That book astonished me.
I always thought Moby Dick would be a book I'd never read.
Moby Dick sounded like it would be boring.
Not only was I wrong, but I was completely wrong.
I ended up spending an entire month reading Moby Dick, reading about Moby Dick, looking up new words, thinking about the characters, watching a Moby Dick movie, and falling in love with Moby Dick. Quite unexpected. 

What is the first classic you ever read?

I remember reading and loving Don Quixote when I was in high school.
I was worried that it would be a difficult book to read, and I was surprised to see how readable it was.
It was hilarious, too.
I read it again for the Club in 2019 and it was just as wonderful.

Which classic book inspired you the most?

The main characters in Anne of Green Gables and Heidi and A Little Princess and Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm and A Girl of the Limberlost inspired me to look for the positive in life and be grateful for the good things that happen even when life as a whole is terrible.

What is the most challenging one you’ve ever read, or tried to read?

The Divine Comedy is the most challenging classic I've read. I read the whole thing but I know there was so much about this book that I missed. I can see the need to read and reread and reread some classics.

Favorite movie adaptation of a classic? Least favorite?

I'm a big fan of To Kill a Mockingbird. I also loved the PBS original series on Anne of Green Gables
Most other movies made from classics are disappointments to me.

Which classic character most reminds you of yourself?

Meg Murry from A Wrinkle in Time seems a lot like me.

Has there been a classic title you expected to dislike and ended up loving? Respecting? Appreciating? 

I'd tried to read War and Peace several times and couldn't get into it, so I was surprised to find out how much I liked the characters and the story once I finally committed to reading it.

Classic/s you are DEFINITELY GOING TO MAKE HAPPEN next year?

I'd like to read something of Herman Hesse. I'm thinking about either Siddhartha or The Glass Bead Game.

Favorite memory with a classic and/or your favorite memory with The Classics Club?

I'm happy I found The Classics Club. Classics really are classics for a reason...they are the best books. 

I have always been a reader, but I often read trivial books; I frequently read quickly and I don't think carefully about what I read and I tend to write simple reviews...

But I have found that reading classics in the Classics Club has encouraged me to choose books like I choose good food, to read a little more carefully, to think a little harder about what I'm reading, and, like when I eat good food, I am left feeling full and satisfied.

Are you a classics reader? 
Have you joined the Classics Club?
How long have you been a member?

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Wondrous Words Wednesday: Independent Bookstores in Montana

What are independent bookstores? Independent bookstores are retail bookstores that are independently owned. Independent bookstores can be contrasted to chain bookstores, which are owned by large corporations that often do many more things than selling books.

Why should I go to an independent bookstore rather than a chain bookstore? The owners of independent bookstores choose books to sell that best fit the needs of their local communities. Independent bookstore owners provide venues for authors to meet with and share their books with readers. For every $100 spent in an independent bookstore, $68 stays in the local economy; out of $100 spent at a chain bookstore, only $43 stays in the local economy while buying from a large online bookstore returns nothing to the local economy. 

When I travel, I often visit independent bookstores. 

I was surprised to find two amazing independent bookstores when we traveled recently to Montana.

MONTANA BOOK COMPANY, 331 N. Last Chance Gulch, Helena, Montana

Montana Book Company is an independent, LGBTQ+, locally-owned, bookstore located on historic Last Chance Gulch in Helena, Montana. Montana Book Company has been in downtown Helena since 1978.

It was fun to talk with one of the owners of the bookstore. 

I knew I was in a bookstore that suited me when I realized I'd already read 11 out of the 29 books on the Indie Bestseller List shelves.

The children's books were fantastic, too.

What did I buy here? I bought a copy of Writing Haiku: A Beginner's Guide to Composing Japanese Poetry.

For more about the Montana Book Company, take a look at the website here.

ELK RIVER BOOKS, 122 S. 2nd St., Livingston, Montana

Elk River Books is an antiquarian and new bookstore in Livingston, Montana. The store specializes in rare and collectible outdoor literature. It also carries a curated selection of books by regional authors.

What did I buy here? I bought a nice used copy of Guidebook to Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.

For more about Elk River Books, take a look at the website here.

Do you often visit independent bookstores? 
Do you have a favorite independent bookstore? 
What do you like best about it?

For more wordless photos, go to Wordless Wednesday.

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme where you can share new words that you’ve encountered, or spotlight words you love.  Feel free to get creative! It was first created by Kathy over at Bermuda Onion and is now hosted at Elza Reads.