Category Archives: Pie

One True Thing

Thoughts by Anna Quindlen, Delta 1994, 289 pages

Challenge: 20 books of Summer, What’s in a Name / “ONE” Category

Genre/Theme: Contemporary Lit / Child-Parent Relationships

Type/Source: Tradeback/Gift from a friend

What It’s About: Ellen is young and ambitious, making her father proud. But then her Mom gets sick and her father basically orders her to quit her job – her career – her life to move home and care for Mom. She does but she does it to prove a point to her dad more than because she even slightly wants to do it.

But her Mom is the smartest and the bestest of them all. Ellen has to figure it out the hard way.

Your father was better at it. Much better,” she looked at me and added, “I’m sorry.”

That’s all right, I said, a little mystified because I was not sure what the apology was for. For so long I thought about myself as a girl who walked away from her mother’s life, that it would be a long time before I would start to think about the other part of the bargain, how easily she’d let me go.

Thoughts: Wow – what a story! Heart-wrenching. Not only does Mom die a horrible death by cancer but then Ellen is accused of murdering her. She spends a night in jail because . . . apparently Dear Dad didn’t even know about the arrest. The trial, the aftermath, the reconnection. Just wow.

I loved it.

Thank you Trish of Love Laughter Insanity for sending this book to me in 2012.

Rating: __5__slices of pie. Cherry once and pumpkin twice!

I cooked and cleaned and read; I simmered casseroles and made pies.

 

What’s in a Name host site: Carolina Book Nook

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Six in Six in Six Tries! With Pie

How did I miss this book blogging event? Oh well, better now than never? Thank you to Joann for bringing to my attention. I needed a post idea. The six tries refers to my trials and tribulations with getting the Block Editor to work the way I want it to. Perhaps, my theme and the editor are incompatible. I did a few iterations…

Choose SIX books from SIX categories:

from Jo at the Book jotter. (Nice to meet you Jo!)
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Six new to me authors
Lily King – Euphoria
Louise Gluck – A Village Life
Raven Leilani – Luster
Susanna Clark – Piranesi
Rumann Alam – Leave the World Behind
Douglas Stuart – Shuggie Bain


Six authors I have read before
Liz Moore – Long Bright River
Yaa Gyasi – Transcendent Kingdom
Brit Bennet – The Vanishing Half
Lydia Millet – A Children’s Bible
Carol Shield – Swann
Hari Kunzu – Red Pill


Six books I have enjoyed (not a ranking! just the first 5 slicers I grabbed from the list)
The Resisters – Gish Jen
The Complete Pie Cookbook – Farm Journal
The Cold Millions – Jess Walter
It Shouldn’t Have Been Beautiful – Lia Purpura
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom – Bill Martin
Jack – Marilynne Robinson


Six books with the best pie mentions (yeeaaaaaahh… the BEST?! oh dear)
Breasts & Eggs – Mieko Kawakami
Memorial – Bryan Washington
The House in the Cerulean Sea – TJ Klune
The Green Mile – Stephen King
Salvage the Bones – Jesmyn Ward
The Resisters – Gish Jen


Six books that took me on extraordinary journeys
Blind Dog – Caroline Levin
Interior Chinatown – Charles Yu
The Down Days – Ilze Hugo
The Library Book
Proud Shoes
Murderbot – Martha Wells


Six books I must mention that don’t fit nicely into any category
The Green Mile – Stephen King – readalong !!!
Tender is the Flesh – Augustine Bazterrica – TOB!
Stephen Florida -Gabe Habash – OK, this is just INTENSE
Whereabouts – Jhumpa Lahiri – translated from Italian
Detransition, Baby – Torrey Peters – trans knowledge fun
Telephone – Percival Everett – can you say, versions?

For my thoughts on any of these novels, please enter title in the search upper right -OR- page through my Books-Done-Read page. Thank you. Thank you for visiting. Have a super-dooper fabulous reading rest-of-the-year!

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

The Day the World Came to Town

Thoughts by Jim DeFede, HarperCollins 2021 (orig 2002), 261 pages

Challenge: Book club

Genre/Theme: Nonfiction / September 11th

Type/Source: eBook / Libby to Kindle

What It’s About: This short book is packed with heart-warming stories involving the challenges to the town of Gander, Newfoundland, in dealing with unexpected “guests” due to planes not being able to land in the US when the terrorists attached the World Trade Center on Sept 11, 2001.

We get a little bit of history on why Gander, an exploration of Newfoundland culture, and glimpses into lives of passengers and residents, all the many varied interactions. We even meet some animals!

Thoughts: I teared up a dozen times or more. This was a wonderful read about the goodness of humanity in facing the consequences of evil tragedies. This edition is great in that it gives updates to the friendships made; a ‘where are they now’ look, 20 years hence.

Rating: Four slices of pie. Homemade pie.

 

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Update June 2021 in Review

 Monthly Recap Time!

I finished _13_ books in May. Total for the year: 62 (29 mention pie)

Total page count (including print page count for books I listen-read) = __2848__, 14967 TOTAL pages for the year.

Finished __4__ audiobook (~29 hours!!) 

Hardcover = 2

eBook (Kindle or Libby) = 4

Tradeback = __3___

Count from the library =  _7_, 4 purchased , 2 freebies

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My favorite was Jack.

A lot of really good 4-5 star reads, too. And only one 3-slice ratings that was a stellar book that just didn’t hit me right, perhaps. I stand by my 2 for Klara and the Sun.

I visited North Dakota, Spokane Washington (again), England, an invented Tropical island and the tropics of the South Pacific, St. Louis MO, an outer space planet, up a tree, around the globe and a bit of Mars with Helen Macdonald, and a college town with Ann Patchett.

Fave quote?

Had my heart an unbroken string, your touch would set it trembling.

from Jack by marilynne robinson

It was an amazing month. FULL on #20BooksofSummer!

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Pie? Stephen Florida had cherry pie, The House in the Cerulean had pie, Hamnet mentions pie as did Klara – but more reference to pie triangles. Jack has pie.

I made a Cherry Rhubarb Pie – for Father’s Day and an Apple Pie for some reason I forget.

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“Hate is loud, but I think you’ll learn it’s because it’s only a few people shouting, desperate to be heard. You might not ever be able to change their minds, but so long as your remember you’re not alone, you will overcome.”

From The House in the Cerulean sea

What was YOUR favorite book of June?

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Jack

Thoughts by Marilynne Robinson, Picador 2020, 310 pages

Challenge: personal

Genre/Theme: Faith Family Redemption Despair

Type/Source: eBook / Libby-Kindle

What It’s About: Forbidden love. Why, oh why, do we do things we know we shouldn’t? Uncountenanced.

Yes, I had to look up that word. A word that is defined by its opposite. INFURIATING.

Uncountenanced means not countenanced.

Yea, OK.

ah! but the SYNONYMS tell you: “forbidden, unaccredited, black-market, censor, banish, out, tabu, ostracise, forbidding, banning, smuggled,…”

Thoughts: Jack, a bum, a lowlife, a shiftless fraud, a ne’er-do-well, aimless, lost soul… meets Della, a fine upstanding young Black teacher. They fall in love, despite good intentions? despite seeing all the roadblocks and glaring reasons how it will be a difficult relationship, this being set in the 1950’s where just being seen together could get them arrested. Jack is just so fascinating! He is talented and smart, but just cannot feign interest or trust in ambition, to live on any set path of ‘the straight & narrow’. Oh Della.

Had my heart an unbroken string, your touch would set it trembling.

Rating: Five slices of pie. These books are my favorite FAVORITES.

… she put her hand in the crook of his arm. “I kept a drumstick for you, Mr. Boughton, and some stuffing, and a piece of pie.

 

For other EXCELLENT reviews, visit Ripple Effects by Arti and also Teresa at Shelf Love.

He was undisgraced and she was unoffended, a devout hope more or less fulfilled.

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Klara and the Sun

Thoughts by Kazuo Ishiguro, Random House Audio 2021, 10 hr 16 min

Narrated by Sura Siu

Challenge: TOB Summer Camp

Genre/Theme: Science Fiction / Artificial Intelligence

Type/Source: Audiobook/Audible

What It’s About: Rather than tell you what it is about, I will tell you what happens.

SPOILER WARNING?

Klara has been hanging out as merchandise at the Artificial Friend Store, observing the sidewalk crowd and hoping to be chosen by a nice little girl. Klara is of a model that needs the sun’s rays to recharge her batteries.

Josie is a young sickly child who has had some vague something done to her to make her more exceptional and her next door neighbor boy hasn’t had this thing whatever it is. Josie begs her mom for an Artificial Friend.

Josie and Mom take Klara home.

Josie gets real sick, Klara strikes a bargain with the sun (we never get the sun’s perspective) to save Klara because Josie and her neighbor-boy-friend have the truest love and wa la! Klara manages to get a burst of sunshine directly on poor Josie at just the right time and she is saved!

Josie grows up and goes away to college, neighbor-boy goes his way, Klara spends her retirement in a utility closet.

The End.

Thoughts: Blech.

If you love Ishiguro, you’ll likely love this, too. If you don’t like Ishiguro, this won’t convince you that giving him another chance was a good decision.

Rating: But there is pie so maybe two to 2.5 slices of pie.

 

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Hamnet

Thoughts by Maggie O’Farrell, Knopf/Borzoi Books 2020, 384 pages

Challenge: #20BooksofSummer

Genre/Theme: Historical Fiction / Shakespearean England

Type/Source: eBook/Libby-Kindle

What It’s About: This is an imagined life of the wife and kids of William Shakespeare.

Factually, you can find out that Bill Shakespeare had 3 children, one was a son who died at the age of 11. His name was Hamnet. Apparently Hamnet and Hamlet are names like Bill and Will — nicknames of the ‘same’ name.

His gums are red and sore, the peaks of new teeth poking through, his cheeks livid and hot. He fusses, he squeezes pie between his fingers, he tips over his cup, he leans on Agnes’s shoulder, he grabs at her napkin and drops it to the floor.

The story begins with us meeting Hamnet as he runs all over trying to find his mom, or his grandma, or the servants, or anyone, really, to help his twin sister Judith who has taken ill.

Then we shift back 15 years earlier to when our poet Bill met and fell hard for Agnes, the woman who became his wife, mother to his children. (yea, yea, if you look at Wiki, there’s some chatter about the name Agnes or Anne and if they were the same lady or not, whatever. The author can write her fiction as she sees best.)

Eventually, these time lines meet. Dad has been working in London but receives word that his child is ill and he races home as only one can in the 16th century. By which I mean, tragically, too late.

Then we sadly and quickly jump to ten plus years out to when Will puts on a play, Hamlet.

Thoughts: I liked it but didn’t love it. Not sure why, maybe it was too short? The writing is great. The characters drawn well. The pacing is fine. It has all the components of a fabulous read and it is quite good, so don’t let me talk you out of reading it; read it!

A breeze threads through the room, stirring the air inside it, toying with the wall drapes, the mantel-cloth, carrying with it the scent of the street, dust from the dry road, a hint of a pie baking somewhere nearby, the acrid sweetness of caramelizing apple.

It has LOTS of pie, like a good English novel set in these times would.

Rating: Four slices of pie.

Gone is the jostling, whistling, brawling, pie-chewing mass and in its place a silent, awed congregation.

 

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

The House in the Cerulean Sea

Thoughts by TJ Klune, A Tom Doherty Associates Book 2020, 394 pages

Challenge: #20BooksofSummer

Genre/Theme: Middle School Fantasy / Magical Children

Type/Source: eBook / Libby app

“I’m told there will be pie for dessert. I do love pie so.”

What It’s About: Linus is a caseworker investigating orphanages for Magical Children. He is super diligent about his job and his duties, very committed. He is sent on a special mission to report on a secretive home, classified Level 4 – where only the most special (scary) magically-gifted children live. Love and just a bit of mayhem ensues. Mostly love.

“Hate is loud, but I think you’ll learn it’s because it’s only a few people shouting, desperate to be heard. You might not ever be able to change their minds, but so long as your remember you’re not alone, you will overcome.”

Thoughts: I had a Linus character in the book I just read previously! LOVE book-coinkydinks.

I believe this book is suitable for the Middle School reader which is fine, but not quite my thing, so any “I LIKED IT” rating (cough, cough, 3 stars) is based on my own personal reaction and should be considered as such. If you adore lovely heart-warming fiction and like these kinds of books, you are SURE TO LOVE THIS ONE; I would bet on it. Just look at all the rave reviews on goodreads! But for me, I was thinking it a bit too twee. Maybe if I had actually read any of the reviews and had my expectations tempered some, I would also have fallen head over heels but I didn’t here.

It’s still quite charming and well done in drawing delightful characters, celebrating and embracing what makes us unique and is an endearing family creation story.

“We should always make time for the things we like. If we don’t, we might forget how to be happy.”

Rating: Three slices of pie. I do say, LOTS of pie quotes to choose from.

“But there is pie,” Zoe said. “Baked especially for you.”

 

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Stephen Florida

Thoughts by Gabe Habash, Coffee House Press 2017, 304 pages

Challenge: Tournament of Favorites

Genre/Theme: Contemporary Literature / Wrestling and/or Obsession

Type/Source: Tradeback / Indie Bookstore Purchase

What It’s About: A college wrestler in the 133 weight class is determined to win his division at the National competition. He is focused. He is unwavering. He is obsessed. He is lonely. As a friend of mine says, “He ain’t right.”

Life and the human condition are the exact same thing and it makes no difference, the design is sadness, gravitational and old, except the few times it hiccups and it’s not.

Thoughts: Wow.

I am just amazed and in such admiration of the construction of this novel. Tight, always on, never wavering. So many little WTF!s dropped in — did you see that? did that just happen? does he mean ___?!

I had attempted this and read just enough back in 2018 for that year’s Tournament of Books to know I wasn’t going to devote the necessary headspace to finish or give honest credit. So I bailed. Now it is on the list of the Tournament of Favorites so I decided to not only give it a fresh view but purchased it so that the author might know my intent was true (and forgive myself for the abandonment in 2018.)

I can’t really say I enjoyed this. A five slicer usually is one where I am joyously enthralled. That is NOT quite the case. But I did admire this as craft. And I don’t even really know what that means! I just think this is extremely impressive and can recommend to anyone who likes to read books that live in the mind of psychologically unhinged characters.

Rating: Five slices of pie.

“… telling the Minnesota kids ghost stories in exchange for their mom’s cherry pies.”

 

I didn’t learn anything I didn’t want to learn. It was a reality I wasn’t surprised by. When I met you I felt like someone was trying to make it up to me.

 

Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Update May 2021 in Review

 Monthly Recap Time!

I finished _8_ books in May. Total for the year: 48 (19 mention pie)

Total page count (including print page count for books I listen-read) = __3216__, + Q1+ May = 12119 TOTAL pages for the year.

Finished __2__ audiobook (47.13 hours!!) 

Hardcover = 3

eBook (Kindle or Libby) = 3

Tradeback = __0___were paperback

Count from the library =  _2_, TCM and D,T — 5 purchased , 1 given to me (Thanks Ellen!)

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My favorite was The Cold Millions, maybe? Huh, a lot of really good 4 star reads, too. Detransition, Baby was great. Swann was one I was glad to read; Salvage the Bones, too. And The Book of Longings! I really can’t say ANY of these 8 were in any way disappointing.

I visited France and I visited the Middle East at the time of Christ. Mississippi by the coast, Dublin Ireland, Brooklyn NYC, Ontario Canada, Spokane Washington at the turn of the century, and Ohio.

I want to count No One is Talking About This as nonfiction; apparently it is an novel.

Fave quote?

“It isn’t important.” “Everything’s important.” “I can’t remember what I was going to say.” She looked down at her rhubarb pie and pledged herself not to jeopardize what was left of the evening.

from SWANN by Carol shields

It was a good month. Bring on #20BooksofSummer!

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Pie? Swann had pie. So did Salvage the Bones and The Cold Millions. and the Lockwood had a pie chart. It counts.

I made a Strawberry Rhubarb Pie with a friend last week. Will have to make another for June 9, this pie’s official day.

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Copyright © 2007-2021. Care’s Books and Pie also known as and originally created as Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.