Category Archives: Young Adult

⧫ November ⧫ 2022 ⧫ Recap

HA! WP just prompted me to share 5 things I’m good at…

  1. Maintaining a passion for writing letters
  2. Being a pie ambassador
  3. Loving on the dogs
  4. Keeping up with this blog, even if inconsistently
  5. Picking myself back up when I fall

 Monthly Recap Time! November

  • 5 books; 91 for the year
  • 1317 pages, 21.75 hours | 25775 total pages, 217.8 hours for the year so far
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I continue to have a flailing ability to focus on reading. I have managed to do more audiobooking due to being in a car more than ever, commuting to the J-O-B. It’s been cold and the old dog has been off & on with wanting to walk so that has diminished, AND!!!

EXCITING NEWS! We got another dog! Who is *not* leash-trained so managing an audiobook/walk is a future goal with this boy:

His name is Copper. He is a 3 yo Wirehaired Pointing Griffon. Esther is not amused…

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I started an abandonning of more books lately, or acquired-and-not-even-started!! library books lately, … you may not even be able to call me a “reader”. Oh well, I still managed 5 titles, short as one might be. I finished the Bookclub pick (Into the Abyss) and did OK on adding in some Nonfiction, so I am reasonably satisfied with the results.

Into the Abyss, which I convinced club to read because it was #NonfictionNovember (yay me!) also gave me a pie mention which was delightful to encounter.

…, so he asked me if I would make pies out of them.

~80% in when sharing about Paul peeling a bunch of apples.
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Write For Your Life was my favorite. It would be a good gift if you have a letter-writer/reader in your life.

and finally, we come to December. I know blogging has been hit or miss with me but I do love to track my books. The TOB Long List has been out a few weeks now and the Short List should be any day; I hope I get more excited but I do not think I will be as obsessed with the Tournament as much in 2023, what a new family member to work with and distract from sitting around and, well. SITTING. He is high energy!

What was YOUR favorite book of November? Especially NONFICTION so I can add to my list for next year.

Happy Holidays! Merry Christmas! Happy Hanukkah! Jolly Jolabokaflod!!!

Copyright © 2007-2022. 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.

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⬥OCTOBER⬥ 2022

 Monthly Recap Time! October

  • 8 books; 86 for the year
  • 2740 pages, 25.78 hours | 24462 total pages, 196.1 hours for the year so far

I have had a rollercoaster of an emotional month. But I read these! And they were all 4 or 5 slicers of pie reads: I gave 5s to World Piece, Address Unknown (a short story about how seemingly nice people buy into evil rhetoric and then join radical movements that justify other people as subhuman), and Fidelity. The rest got 4 slices. I didn’t even know who Tom Morello was – interesting guy. I do love the Audible musician stories. I wish I had read + listened to the Cruz, but that is all on me. I recommend it; definitely a terrific immigrant story with humor and love.

I had an increase in blogging, too. Thanks for the comments and support there.

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October was the BRING BACK of audiobooks. I listened to some. I have a new job that gives me drive time in the car.

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Of course, World PIEce had pie. And The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek had a lot of pie, too. How Not to Drown in a Glass of Water featured pastelitos, a fried handpie of goodness on many Dominican menus.

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November is another month; I hope it brings you HOPE. Hope is the belief in things unseen.

What was YOUR favorite book of October? ARE YOU PLANNING ON READING FOR NONFICTION NOVEMBER? Tell me your recommendations.

Copyright © 2007-2022. 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.

Status ⬥ The Month After July ⬥ 2022

 Monthly Recap Time! August

  • 7 books; 72 for the year
  • 2740 pages, 28.5 hours | 21128 total pages, 169.3 hours for the year so far

“… a party being made better because of the pie you brought…”

LESSONS in CHEmistry
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Pie for the win. EVERY BOOK I READ HAD PIE! Pretty impressive..

“Maria helped herself to the last bites of Eddie’s apple pie and unfolded her notes on the table, but instead of Devil’s Bargain she found herself thinking of the scale model of Mercury.”

– MERCURY PICTURES PRESENTS
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And my audiobook game has returned. THREE audiobooks finished and meaty books, too — not just a 1 hour created-for-Audible nibble.

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My favorite was Bonnie Garmus’ Lessons in Chemistry. Hands down, my kind of book. Strong female character, touches all the ugly bits of reality yet balanced with love and humor, plus a cool dog. Some reviews recommend print over the audio, though I didn’t catch the mispronunciations or chemical terms …. oops. I did notice a long “e” sound for the word “been” and something else with an eeeee sound that to me should be more of an “i” sound like “bin”.

I read French’s The Searcher for book club. It was good but not my favorite of hers. And another book that suffered I HOPE! from bad mood and poor timing, was Anthony Marra’s Mercury Pictures Presents. I want to try it again someday.

“He finds a café and gets himself a slice of apple pie and more coffee to pass the time till his laundry is ready.”

the searcher

Perhaps, August was just meant to be devoted to nonfiction? I really liked Destiny of the Republic by Candace Millard. She’s good! and she wrote a lovely tribute to David McCullough, a favorite of mine for readable fascinating enjoyable history, who died August 7. I’ve not read near enough of his oeuvre and now I need to add all of Millard’s.

I read The Sum of Us. Fascinating and sad how systematic racism is sneakily argumented away and seems invisible to sum. Why don’t towns have a city pool? because they didn’t want to share with ALL the citizens of the town. Stupid. Evil.

Which brings me to share that I finally finished brown girl dreaming by the lovely Jacqueline Woodson! Here memoir in verse, my mid-year, many months, poem-a-day project. LOVELY.

“…Remember the time, they ask,
when we stole Miss Carter’s peach pie off her windowsill,…”

brown girl dreaming

Then I listened to Taste by Stanley Tucci, because I think celebrity memoirs are a great way to break a slump. Plus, the lack of audiobooks in prior months meant I had credits to burn. I have a print of this at the library to pick up so I can get the recipes. (His cookbooks have hold lists but this I got right away.)

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What was YOUR favorite book of August?

September has a couple of pie days. The 15th is Butterscotch Cinnamon Pie Day! (A healing pie in the video game UnderTale.) Sept 23 is Pot Pie Day (Lessons in Chemistry has pot pie! and a terrific explanation of pie pastry. KFC’s chicken pot pie is decent, too. Look for a coupon.) Sept 26 is Key Lime Pie Day – read a book set in Florida! LOL — and Raspberry Cream Pie Day is Sept 28.

Today, as I write and prep this post, I’m contemplating a Grape Galette. You can see a photo (it’s readable! perhaps I should add a link to my pie page… Hmmmmm) of my recipe in a post from 2017; enjoy.

Copyright © 2007-2022. 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.

In Review November 2021

 Monthly Recap Time!

Total of Six:

Number of pages: 2427, number of hours: 30.74 ♦ Total pages for year-to-date: 27,266 ◘ total hours: ~270

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What Kind, Where From:

Tradeback owned + Audio from library Radium Girls by Kate Moore

The Promise eBook by Damon Galgut (Booker Prize)

A Spindle Spintered by Alix Harrow eBook/Libby

Leading with Questions Hardcover/Work-provided by Mark Marquardt

Infinite Country by Patricia Engle eBook/Libby

Cloud Cuckoo Land Audiobook/Audible by Anthony Doerr

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Rather than saying my favorite read of the month, I will wow you with the statement that I gave ALL the fiction 5 slices of pie and one of the Nonfiction. The other only other nonfic I read, I gave 2 slices. (Ugh; it was a slog.)

These books took me on visits to New Jersey near NYC and to a small town in Illinois, NYC and the country of Columbia. The Booker Prize put me in South Africa, the fairy tale was grounded in Pennsylvania (IIRC) and then in the land of princesses and dragons and scary forests to pass through. Cloud Cuckoo Land was in the past in Constantinople — the recent past in Idaho — some Vietnam or was it Korea? — and in the future to an outerspace somewhere sealed away for decades.

Nonfiction November fell a part for me once the TOB Long List hit the newsstand. I became obsessed and abandoned almost the entirety of my Litsy #BookSpinBingo card. I gave up blogging. I could only focus on a few things and that was TOB and family stuff, I guess.

I didn’t even update my book tracker but thankfully I had goodreads. Whew!

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Speaking of THANKFUL and since it’s November’s recap… let’s talk Pie! All of the books I enjoyed mention pie. One was “a slice of pie” (a slice of RADIUM pie!), one mentions a pie pan, and one used the word “piebald” — hey, it counts. One features empanadas, one said something about “hand-raised pie” or somethingsomething British-Baking-Show (and now my count is off), but finally! one discusses milk tart – has to be a custard and I need to search more, and also CHICKEN PIE.

I myself made Pecan. Oh. and…. Lyle Lovett liked my tweet of the pic of my Pecan pie for #SecularPieThursday. SQUEEEEEEEEEE!

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And rather than ask you what your fave was for the month already 8+ days ago, I will point you to JoAnn’s Gulfside Musings Nonfiction November final post that features some really enticing reads that maybe I can get to next year?

Copyright © 2007-2022. 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.

In Review October 2021

 Monthly Recap Time!

Total of 13…

Count from the library =  SIX, one book was for my monthly Audible credit and finished with Libby; five purchased, and another library for both eBook and Hardcover

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My favorite read of the month is The Soul of Kindness by Elizabeth Taylor. [Link to Review]

These books took me on visits to Colorado, NYC and outer space. I saw the US and some views into Canada. I was in UK-fantasy land. USA again and a half century away in rural England. OPKS was where I lived in the first book (and I’ve lived there in my history, so YAY KANSAS) and ended up in Sweden for the last book of the month.

Five nonfiction – if I count the poetry?) One of the books I read this month is “loosely-based memoir” fiction: Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit by Jeannette Winterson. SO GLAD to have enjoyed this which had been on my tbr for a long time.

Two featured LGBTQ+, three by POC, one in translation, four classics. Seven female-identifying authors (I might be guessing/assuming) to six by male-presenting.

and…… The Tournament of Favorites was fabulous! The winner is Tsar of Love and Techno over Version Control in the finals. Great fun, much fun, warms the heart and stimulates the brain. I love the tournaments as much as I love pie. Bring on the Long List! Any day now… I haven’t read too many on on the possibly contenders list. Books pub’d this year include: Fugitive Telemetry SF, Meet Cute Diary TransRomance?, Yoga Pants Nation MomLit, (oh yea, I read all the Summer Camp books, too!)

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Pie! NINE books out of 13 mention pie.

I made Cranberry Pear Pie, Pumpkin, and some Dutch Apple crumb pies.

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What was YOUR favorite book of October?

Copyright © 2007-2022. 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.

Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit

Thoughts by Jeanette Winterson, Grove Press 1985, 176 pages

Fruit salad, fruit pie, fruit for fools, fruited punch.”

Challenge: n/a

Genre/Theme: LGBTQIA+ coming of age

Type/Source: Tradeback / Used Book Store Purchase

It is not the one thing nor the other that leads to madness, but the space in between them.

What It’s About: Jeanette is a young girl being groomed to be a missionary. She’s the adopted daughter of a very headstrong woman and an inconsequential father. Jeanette loves the Lord and loves the church and is OK with being considered odd because she has a purpose.

If the demons lie within they travel with you.

Eventually, however, she begins to have doubts. Especially when her friendship with Melanie blossoms into a special love. The church disapproves.

People do go back, but they don’t survive, because two realities are claiming them at the same time. Such things are too much. You can salt your heart, or kill your heart, or you can choose between the two realities. There is much pain here. Some people think you can have your cake and eat it. The cake goes mouldy and they choke on what’s left. Going back after a long time will make you mad, because the people you left behind do not like to think of you changed, will treat you as they always did, accuse you of being indifferent, when you are only different.

Winterson weaves parables and fantasy stories of wizards and King Arthur into this semi-autobiographical tale and I enjoyed the heck out of her voice, her turn of phrase, her interesting thoughts on how the world works.

“She asked if it was the woman who served pie and peas in the pub; Doreen didn’t know, but now that she thought of it that would explain why he always smelled of gravy when he came home late.”

Thoughts: It all worked for me. Enjoyed this very much.

“Best thing to come out of France,” the woman declared, biting her Bourbon.

“What about quiche?“ I reminded her.

“Right, that’s right,” she nodded.

Rating: Five slices of pie. Mince pie! and quiche.

“I have a theory that every time you make an important choice, the part of you left behind continues the other life you could have had.”

 

Copyright © 2007-2022. 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.

Meet Cute Diary

Thoughts by Emery Lee, Quill Tree Books 2021, 400 pages

Challenge: Recommended by a friend

Genre/Theme: LGBTQIA+ YA

Type/Source: eBook / Kindle sale

What It’s About: Noah is 17 and blogger of ‘meet cute’ stories for trans youth. Noah was identified as female at birth and is now identifying as male, with respectful acceptance by his family; he spends the summer in Colorado with his college-age brother as his parents find a house in California, moving from Florida.

Updated 24+ hours later: It seems I missed a key plot element in how Noah’s brothers’ girlfriend, Maggie, misgendered Noah when they met and this understandably set Noah to dislike her with a furious intensity. Apologies for my careless reading attention to this event.

Thoughts: Noah has a lot of growing up to do; this could be a coming of age story, I guess. He was both so gosh darn earnest AND set in his (wrong?) opinions. For example, he did NOT like his brother’s girlfriend but never really convinced me, no analysis. He was such a slacker, it annoyed me. Basically, I am NOT the right age or target audience for this book to appreciate the vagaries of youth. However, I did learn a few things about pronouns and that is a good thing.

I can’t bring myself to write in the Diary. It’s probably just shooting myself in the foot since really, I should be online proving to people that love is real, but I can’t work past the churning in my stomach. I just want to go to sleep forever, or at least until my mom restores my credit card.

The book has pie and pastry baking, so it has that going for it.

Rating: Two or three slices of pie.

“I jolt back at the sound of laughter, whipping around to find Maggie standing in the kitchen, a plate full of pastelitos balanced in one hand.”

 

Copyright © 2007-2022. 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.

A Tale for the Time Being

Thoughts by Ruth Ozeki, Viking 2013, 433 pages

Challenge: TOB Favorites

Genre/Theme: Contemporary Lit / Time Travel

Type/Source: eBook / Library -Kindle

What It’s About: A fascinating story that interweaves across time and distance and offers up a few mind-benders and reality-suspension moments. A writer named Ruth, experiencing a lack of motivation in her current project, finds a package washed up on the beach of her remote Pacific Canadian island. Inside is a journal, a watch and a collection of letters written in French. I think the language is English essentially, but culturally Japanese ; the journal-ist is a young Japanese girl suffering from a tumultuous change in her standard of living and location. Her father lost his silicon-valley job in California and uprooted Nao to Japan – a foreign world to her. She writes as if she knows the reader, addresses her directly, tells her all about her life, her horrid school and the bullies there and also her great-grandmother, a 104 yo Buddhist nun. Ruth is the reader and takes on the challenge of being Nao’s friend. Across time, across the ocean, across practicality.

For the time being, Words scatter . . . Are they fallen leaves?

Thoughts: It’s a wonder it works. I’m sure for many, it doesn’t; but for me it does. There’s word play, dream movement, thoughts on the precarious nature of our world and the environment. There’s history, there’s violence, brutal brutal violence, and yet there is zen, and hopeful hope. I just adored Jika! I wasn’t so sure about Ruth, but she is going through her own growth spurt through doubt with Nao so it made sense to me. Oliver is a treat.

I keep thinking about this story. I think it will be one of those I remember and think about and grow more fond of as time goes on.

“She wasn’t crying. They were just the memories, leaking out.”

Rating: Four slices of pie. No pie mentioned. (French pastry, however…)

To grasp this truly, every being that exists in the entire world is linked together as moments in time, and at the same time they exist as individual moments of time. Because all moments are the time being, they are your time being.

—D gen Zenji, Uji

 

Up is down. Down is up.

Copyright © 2007-2022. 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 Resisters

Thoughts by Gish Jen, Knopf 2021 (orig 2020), 305 pages

Challenge: TOB

Genre/Theme: Contemporary Lit, Dystopia, Baseball, YA?

Type/Source: Tradeback/Indie bookstore

What It’s About: A former college professor and his public aid attorney wife have a baby girl who turns out is a baseball prodigy. They live on ‘the wrong side of the tracks’ in this dystopian former United States that have separated people into two groups of have and have not: the “Netted” and the “Surplus”; the land-dwellers and the swamp or boat people.

The narrator is the father, a tinkerer and baseball coach – not because he knows and loves baseball, but to nurture the gifts that his daughter obviously has and wants to develop. His lawyer wife takes on cases against the government proving that actions of the ‘system’ are detrimental to the Surplus population and violation of “FREEDOM”. The Surplus freedom is limited, let’s say. They are constantly under surveillance, receive no educational opportunities, yet are expected to be grateful because they get housing and free food. But is the food tainted?

Daughter grows up, is recruited to join the Netted’s baseball team, is just about as perfect and lovable and talented as she can be – and I loved it!

Thoughts: I really enjoyed this one. I think it was the tone; rather upbeat for a family that is abused more than most for their efforts to “fight the man”. I loved the family dynamic. I loved Grant’s mother’s little pithy sayings. (Grant is the father/narrator), I loved Gwen being so badass and trusting and nice and still a badass. Her mother, too. She was all business yet had a big heart.

I’ve read that some thought this heavy-handed and the characters flat. But I loved it. Very readable, laugh out loud funny sometimes, drama and excitement – especially if you love baseball. Also, I do want to say, that I think the reader who is not a fan of sports could still find much to enjoy in this. I also want to suggest that if you are a reader who sees words, then the audiobook may not be your best avenue. I needed to SEE the words; Ondi and Auntie sound too much alike and the portmanteau words that describe much of “AutoAmerica” (Automatic America) just didn’t register until I saw the letters.

Rating: Five slices of pie. OH! This book has pie!!! LOTS of pie. I hope Instagrammer Pie and Book Phenom @PieLadyBooks reads this one because I would love to see what she would create.

But later she said that she pictured Eleanor sitting at that big table with the apple pie untouched in front of her, and everything came together.”

and why doesn’t my end quote copyright show up in the tiny print I want??

Copyright © 2007-2022. 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.

We Ride Upon Sticks

Thoughts by Quan Barry, Random House Audio 2020, 14 hours 44 minutes

Narrated by Isabel Keating

Challenge: Possible TOB Long List to Short (Gamble)
Genre: YA
Type/Source: Audiobook/Library
 Why I read this now:  Available at Library 

MOTIVATION for READING: Tournament of Books 2021 Hopeful

WHAT’s it ABOUT:  A Girls HS Field Hockey Team who make a pact with the darkside in order to win State. This takes place and draws heavily on the Salem Witch Trials history.

THOUGHTS: This was a fun listen. Humor was delightful and I was often chortling or laughing or exclaiming, “oh my!” Good stuff.

However, it was a bit too long. I was invested but ready for it to be done.

The poetry collection I opened when almost finished with this audiobook references the Salem Witch Trials. [The Thin Wall by Martha Rhodes]

RATING:  Four slices of pie.

Pie actually had a few mentions – a mother of a team member enters a pie in the county fair, is one.

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Copyright © 2007-2020. Care’s Online Book Club. All rights reserved. This post was originally posted by Care from Care’s Online Book Club.  It should not be reproduced without express written permission.