October 2016 Recap

October RecapOctober was a lovely month – I got a lot of reading in (even with about a week in the middle where I read very little), my mother-in-law came for a visit (yay!), and I had events with friends three times. That fact is very much related to the visit. 😉

So yes, it was a lovely month.

October 2016 in Stats

Books Read This Month: 11
Books Read For The Year: 76

Things That Happened
  • Halloween
  • In the Facebook book club we discussed The Legend of Sleepy Hollow
  • Belt testing passed successfully by both kids
  • Soccer ended.
  • Popcorn sales. Lots of popcorn sales. 😉
Best Things I Did or Saw
  • We had our first field trip of the year: we rode the train from Connersville to Metamora, got to walk around the town a bit, and then ride the train back. It was fun, but I was exhausted by the end of it!
  • We used a stencil to carve pumpkins for the first time, and I am a big fan.
What’s Cooking
  • Not much. I feel like I was scrounging all month with meal ideas.
What I’m Anticipating in November
  • Book club – The Book Thief for my in-person book club and David and Goliath in the Facebook group.
  • Thanksgiving. Yummm.
  • G has two Cub Scout outings – a hike in a nearby State Park, and going to the Pacers game.
  • G also has basketball starting – I thought it started in January but apparently, it’s November.
  • H (matybe?) has a taekwondo tournament. G will miss it because of basketball opening day.
Books I Read
  1. Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mewed by Alan Bradley
  2. The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle by Arthur Conan Doyle
  3. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
  4. Moon over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch
  5. Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes
  6. David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell
  7. The Fairy-Tale Detectives:The Sisters Grimm by Michael Buckley
  8. Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes
  9. The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith
  10. The Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths
  11. The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer

Previously on The Deliberate Reader

Two years ago: October 2014 Recap
Three years ago: New on My Bookcase (vol. 10)

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

New on the Stack in October 2016

Welcome to New on the Stack, where you can share the latest books you’ve added to your reading pile. I’d love for you to join us and add a link to your own post or Instagram picture sharing your books! It’s a fun way to see what others will soon be reading, and get even more ideas of books to add to my “I want to read that!” list.New on the Stack button

Moon over SohoMoon over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: Enjoyed the first in the series.

a-rule-against-murderA Rule Against Murder by Louise Penny

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: It’s the next in the Gamache series for me.

a-study-in-scarlet-womenA Study in Scarlet Women by Sherry Thomas

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: Advertising works. 😉

garden-spellsGarden Spells by Sarah Adison Allen

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: Considering it for future plans.

the-silkwormThe Silkworm by Robert Galbraith

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: Continuing on with the Cormoran Strike series.

the-crossing-placesThe Crossing Places by Elly Griffiths

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: I don’t remember how this landed on my TBR list.

the-case-of-the-missing-marquessThe Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it:

the-case-of-the-left-handed-ladyThe Case of the Left-Handed Lady by Nancy Springer

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: I liked the first in the series well enough to want to try the second. It’s super quick to read, so it’s nice when I’m looking for light and easy.

last-of-the-breedLast of the Breed by Louis L’Amour

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: Considering it for future plans.

whispers-undergroundWhispers Underground by Ben Aaronovitch

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: Love this series!

the-book-thiefThe Book Thief by Markus Zusak

How did I get it: Borrowed it electronically from the library.
Why did I get it: Book club selection for November. I keep borrowing it and not reading it and then having to borrow it again.


“New on the Stack” Link-up Guidelines:

1. Share your posts or Instagram pictures about the new-to-you books you added to your reading stack last month. They can be purchases, library books, ebooks, whatever it is you’ll be reading! Entries completely unrelated to this theme or linked to your homepage may be deleted.

2. Link back to this post – you can use the button below if you’d like, or just use a text link.

The Deliberate Reader

3. The linkup will be open until the end of the month.

4. Please visit the person’s blog or Instagram who linked up directly before you and leave them a comment.

5. By linking up, you’re granting me permission to use and/or repost photographs from your linked post or Instagram. (Because on social media or in next month’s post, I hope to feature some of the books that catch my attention from this month.)

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Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

Introducing November’s Book Club Selection: David and Goliath

David and GoliathDavid and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling GiantsDavid and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants by Malcolm Gladwell by Malcolm Gladwell

What It’s About

Description from Goodreads:

In his #1 bestselling books The Tipping Point, Blink, and Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell has explored the ways we understand and change our world. Now he looks at the complex and surprising ways the weak can defeat the strong, the small can match up against the giant, and how our goals (often culturally determined) can make a huge difference in our ultimate sense of success. Drawing upon examples from the world of business, sports, culture, cutting-edge psychology, and an array of unforgettable characters around the world, David and Goliath is in many ways the most practical and provocative book Malcolm Gladwell has ever written.

Why Was This Title Selected

I typically enjoy Gladwell’s books, and they’re usually easy to read. Since November can kick off a busy season, I was looking for that in our final nonfiction selection for the year.

Anything Else to Know About It?

We’ll be starting the discussion about the book today, and you’re welcome to come and join us.

It’s available in print, for Kindle or Nook, or on Audible.

What’s Coming Up in December?

The HobbitThe HobbitThe Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien by J. R. R. Tolkien

Why did I select it? I had to have a fantasy choice fo the year, and this is one that I’ve been meaning to read for years. I’m also hoping it should be fairly easy to read during a busy season.

Find the book: Print | Kindle | Nook| Audible | Goodreads

And a heads-up: you can get the Audible version for a reduced price if you buy the Kindle version first. There are also several versions available, including one that is a dramatization.

See all the books we’ll be reading in 2016 here.


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

Three years ago: Wrapping Up 31 More Days of Great Nonfiction
Four years ago: Wrapping Up 31 Days of Great Nonfiction Reads

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

New on Your Stack (volume 20)

Some highlights from the books from last month’s linkup:

newton-and-pollyJill (Days at Home) had a nice book haul, including Newton and Polly: A Novel of Amazing Grace, the newest book by Jody Hedlund.


the-secret-diary-of-lydia-bennetKate (Opinionated Book Lover) went to BEA and came back with a truckload of ARC’s, including The Secret Diary of Lydia Bennet. Sounds intriguing, and it reminds me that I meant to finish watching the Lizzie Bennet Diaries on YouTube and never did. .


dark-matterTanya (The Other Side of the Road) has Dark Matter on her stack, and I’m on hold for it at the library – it sounds super compelling and I can’t wait to read it!


strange-unusual-gross-cool-animalsStacie (Sincerely Stacie) has lots of new books, including a couple of great looking kids’ books. I am especially interested in the Extreme Wildfire (because of an uncle who used to be a firefighter for the National Parks Service, and a cousin who just started as one). I also am tempted by the Strange, Unusual, Gross, and Cool Animals book, because I think my son would LOVE it. Especially the parts about the gross ones. 😉


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

Two years ago: Spooky Books (or as close as I get) #31BookPics
Three years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction: Chasing Daylight
Four years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction Reads {Day 31} Garlic and Sapphires

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (and a linkup)

The Legend of Sleepy HollowThe Legend of Sleepy HollowThe Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
by Washington Irving

Horror stories are ones I typically avoid, being a total reading wimp. I even questioned whether I wanted to select Irving’s famous tale for October’s book club, because what if it was too much for me?

Then I read it and discovered that it’s not really a horror story, or even particularly scary. If you too are a reading wimp, don’t hesitate to give this a try. It’s super short (the audio is just over an hour), and while the writing is florid, it’s not scary. I listened to most of it late at night in an old farmhouse (i.e., on my book club retreat) and didn’t start jumping at all the bumps and creaks that sort of house makes.

If you’ve never read it, I’d encourage you to give it a try – it’s such a quick read and then you can feel proud of yourself for reading a classic. Oh, wait, maybe that was just me. 🙂


Looking ahead at next month, we’ll start our discussion of David and Goliath on November 1st..


If you’ve written a post about The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, you’re welcome to add it to the linkup below.

Link-up Guidelines:

1. Share a post about the book. Entries completely unrelated to this theme or linked to your homepage may be deleted.

2. Link back to The Deliberate Reader – you can use the button below if you’d like, or just use a text link.

The Deliberate Reader

3. The linkup will be open for two weeks.

4. Please visit the person’s blog who linked up directly before you and leave them a comment.

5. By linking up, you’re granting me permission to use and/or repost photographs or comments from your linked post.

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Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes

year-of-yesYear of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes

I’m kind of embarrassed to admit this, but I bought Year of Yes without having any idea who the author was. I think I had it mixed up with some other book, because I was quite surprised to discover when listening to it that Rhimes is really really famous and the creator behind many hit TV shows.

Oh. Well, clearly I am not the person to turn to when you play trivia games about Pop Culture.

I’m actually glad I had no idea who she was. Sound crazy? If I had known her name, I’m sure I’d have passed on the book thinking it was just another celebrity memoir. Celebrity memoirs = not my thing.

And it turns out I really liked this celebrity memoir that isn’t exactly a celebrity memoir like was imagining. Rhimes is funny and warm and a bit inspiring (what should I say yes to that I’ve been avoiding out of fear?)

If you are a fan of her shows, I can’t imagine that you wouldn’t love this – there’s little bits about them and the characters, and most of it was lost on me. I’m sure there was more I didn’t even catch because of not knowing them. I still liked the book.

The audio was great as well – she did a nice job of narrating it and I think listening to it increased my overall enjoyment of the book.

Find the book: Print | Kindle | Audible | Nook | Goodreads

Publisher’s Description:
The megatalented creator of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal and executive producer of How to Get Away with Murder chronicles how saying yes for one year changed her life – and how it can change yours, too.

With three hit shows on television and three children at home, the ubertalented Shonda Rhimes had lots of good reasons to say no when an unexpected invitation arrived. Hollywood party? No. Speaking engagement? No. Media appearances? No.

And there was the side benefit of saying no for an introvert like Shonda: nothing new to fear.

Then Shonda’s sister laid down a challenge: Just for one year, try to say yes to the unexpected invitations that come your way. Shonda reluctantly agreed – and the result was nothing short of transformative. In Year of Yes, Shonda Rhimes chronicles the powerful impact saying yes had on every aspect of her life – and how we can all change our lives with one little word. Yes.


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

Three years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction: Little by Little
Four years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction Reads {Day 25} A Homemade Life

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

Bookish Announcements

Two quick things:

1. I’ll be announcing all of the picks for 2017’s book club on November 14th, but wanted to give sneek peek at January’s book (for your reading planning purposes). We’ll be reading Barbara Kingsolver’s Animal Vegetable Miracle, and the discussion will start January 2nd.

I cannot *wait* to share the rest of the year’s picks – I’m so excited about them!

animal-vegetable-miracle

2. If you’re an Amazon Prime member, and you haven’t already chosen your October Kindle First pick, don’t forget! I usually pick mine early in the month and forgot about it this month. I only remembered yesterday, so if anyone else is also behind on things maybe you still need to. There were two interesting historical fiction options, but I settled on It Is Well.

it-is-well


Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

7 Quick Takes: The Book Hangover Edition

Seven Quick Takes

— 1 —

As I write this, I’m feeling a bit of a book hangover both from staying up too late reading the night before, and because all I want to do is get back into that world, and find out more about what happens with those characters. I’m trying to cure it by reading something completely different, but so far it’s not working. 🙂 (See #7 below to know what book gave me the hangover)

— 2 —

If you remember my post earlier this year about the online course I’m using to teach my kids to cook, you can get their free knife skills mini-course right now. If it sounds appealing, don’t delay – the free offer won’t last long.

— 3 —

I’ll be announcing the picks for my 2017 book club November 14th. I am *so* excited about the selections, and can hardly wait to share them all.

— 4 —

Usborne had some new book releases this week, and I’ve been daydreaming about what books I want to get my kids for Christmas. And by “for Christmas” I mean both as Christmas presents, and as books for the Christmas season – they have some *really* fun interactive books that are Christmas-themed.

usborne-christmas-books-2017

If you click on the image you’ll go to a page with a larger image & info about each book. I’m probably going to get #s 3, 4, and 19. I already own #s 10 & 21.

— 5 —

I loved Big Little Lies as a book club book this year, and I’m kinda excited about the HBO miniseries based on the book. There’s a trailer out for it, and it looks like they’ve changed it a bit, but I’m still debating trying to figure out a way to watch it (we don’t have HBO.)

— 6 —

As much as I’ve resisted it, I think I need to acknowledge that posting 5 times a week isn’t going to reliably happen right now. Homeschooling is taking just a bit longer each day, and my youngest isn’t napping as easily, so my afternoon work time is getting squeezed and squeezed. I seem to be regularly getting only four posts anyway, so it seems like planning for four will be better than planning for five and getting frustrated when I don’t manage to get that fifth one written.

— 7 —

The Silkworm

The best book I’ve finished recently was The Silkworm, the second in the Cormoran Strike series by Robert Galbraith (J. K. Rowling). I enjoyed the first book, but I *really* liked the second. I binge-read it and the next day I paid for the late night I inflicted upon myself. It was worth it.

It’s all I can do to not get the third and start it immediately, but I’m trying to hold off a bit longer. Do not be surprised if next week I admit that I couldn’t wait any longer and binge-read the third. 🙂

For more Quick Takes, visit This Ain’t The Lyceum!


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

One year ago: Book Club Basics: Food
Two years ago: Eiffel’s Tower
Three years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction: The Flamboya Tree
Four years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction Reads {Day 21} An Innocent, A Broad

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes

Under the Tuscan SunUnder the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes

Mayes’ well-known memoir had been on my to-be-read list for years, and I was finally motivated to read it when my in-person book club was considering selecting it for our dinner party book next year. It’s been so much fun the last few years selecting books that lead themselves to nice menu ideas. 🙂

Ultimately, I don’t think we’ll end up reading this one. I expected to enjoy it, but found it somewhat disappointing. Mayes is a beautiful writer, but the story is rambling and felt bloated. I don’t know that I want to encourage my friends to spend their reading time on this, when I feel like it would have been better trimmed down substantially.

While I don’t regret reading it, I think any but the most devoted memoir fans would be frustrated with it. There are moments where she really brings Italy to life, but they become somewhat buried in the minutia of the renovation.

Find the book: Print | Kindle | Audible | Nook | Goodreads

Publisher’s Description:
Frances Mayes—widely published poet, gourmet cook, and travel writer—opens the door to a wondrous new world when she buys and restores an abandoned villa in the spectacular Tuscan countryside. In evocative language, she brings the reader along as she discovers the beauty and simplicity of life in Italy. Mayes also creates dozens of delicious seasonal recipes from her traditional kitchen and simple garden, all of which she includes in the book. Doing for Tuscany what M.F.K. Fisher and Peter Mayle did for Provence, Mayes writes about the tastes and pleasures of a foreign country with gusto and passion.


Previously on The Deliberate Reader

Three years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction: Traffic
Four years ago: 31 Days of Great Nonfiction Reads {Day 18} Fortune Cookie Chronicles

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!

Goodreads Hacks: Creating a “Paused” Shelf

Goodreads imageOne of my most recent updates to my Goodreads account is the addition of an exclusive “paused” shelf. I use it for books that I had been reading, but for whatever reason I’m not continuing ot read at this time. Yet, I didn’t want to add them to my “did not finish” shelf, because I do think I’ll finish them someday.

While it’s still a fairly new addition to my shelves, so far I’m *loving* it. It makes it easy for me to clear out my “currently reading” shelf, and yet not lose those books that I hadn’t finished.


Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting The Deliberate Reader!