What’s in the Mailbox?

Just a musings-Monday. Happy April Everyone!  Here’s a photo from the local garden store that I made my husband take me to yesterday so I would get out of the house:

And I can tell you that I got a book in the mail last week. Thank you Softdrink for sending me this after I begged for it.

I cannot decide what to read next and it is really irritating me. I think I will abandon The Invention of Clouds but every time I flip through it, I think, “OOOoooo!!  That’s cool.” and it has poetry!  and mentions of Jane Austen!!  but.  It’s due at the library. I might end up buying it for my brother as a gift. (SSSHHHHHH!  Don’t tell him.)

Our book club selected The Elephant Keeper and none of you blokes seem to have read it. What’s up with that?!  When I can’t find any review in Fyrefly’s book blog search, I get nervous. On the other hand, maybe I will love it and spark a blogfire of appreciation. THAT would be something fun that I haven’t ever done.

Having read the Literate Housewife’s groundbreaking project to amass a list of truly worthy (cough, not celebrity) audio book narrators, I am tempted to buy the audio of The Elephant Keeper. Roger May reads it. I have no idea if he is any good. (uh, thought – can these be sampled?) IF YOU HAVE LISTENED TO ROGER MAY and recommend, PLEASE let me know.

Or should I get the print version. Or the kindle version. OR see if the library has it?  I’m in a state of paralysis and indecision.

On the letter writing year that is 2012, I sent 46 pieces of mail in March for a grand total of 181 for the first quarter. I received 35 letters, I think. I counted but can’t find where I wrote that down. (probably in a tweet!) I bought some nifty cards and stationery at Marshalls – gawd, I do love the TJX stores.

I posted my Final Summary Thoughts on Cloud Atlas and recommend reading it – if not only because it is one of those books you want to say you ‘know’. But I enjoyed it, too! It’s one of the 1001 Books to Read Before You Die…

What else. I need to make a pie maybe today, maybe tomorrow, NOT yesterday as planned, of the SuperBerries I received on Thursday. Check it out on my tumblr page.

That’s it. To recap… NO WAIT!  I have a copy of Angels and Insects by A.S.Byatt to send on!  Who wants?  Leave me a comment here or on one of my review posts (click Angels or Insects) and tell me if you’ve ever seen a Javelina in real life!

GIVEAWAY DETAILS:    One comment 

open internationally

deadline April 7, Saturday, 7 am EST (ie, NewYorkCity)

Recap:  I received Saturday in my Mailbox, I can’t decide which format to read/listen to The Elephant Keeper and I seek your advice, I write a lot of letters, Bloggiesta was awesome, I still need to bake a pie.  I have a giveaway.

Happy Spring!


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Mailbox Monday 2.27.12

Mailbox Monday 2.27.12

Mailbox Monday 2.27.12

  Mailbox Monday is a Meme currently hosted by MetroReader.

I picked up the following at Goodwill on Saturday so not quite ‘mailbox’ but more like New-Books-In-the-House:

  I really enjoyed Oryx and Crake.

 Seems to be one of those books you should read cuz everyone has.

  I’m sure this will be grittier than the movie.

Now for a LetterMo report. Three days to go! Still time for me to write you a letter if you want one. Or want to receive an ARTFUL postcard! Just DM me your snail-addy to @BkClubCare or e/m to BkClubCare [at] GMail.

I have written/sent (not including today tomorrow and Leap Day (Wednesday)) 75 pieces of mail. Twenty of these pieces were to family, most likely Valentine’s Day cards – I have 11 Nieces and Nephews. I sent 12 birthday cards and 11 postcards. I wrote 9 letters to 6 other LetterMo participants. Thirteen thank-you cards were mailed thanking various kindnesses; one bereavement card. I received a sad and moving thank-you back for that bereavement card. Only one of the birthday cards has been acknowledged. No judging; just the facts.

Postcards seem to generate the most responses — tweets, Facebook acknowledgements, emails, etc.

In all, I received 13 pieces of mail (not counting a bookmooched book; but I sent a thank-you to the nice person who mailed it to me.) I received a gift of a heart-shaped bottle opener – and immediately sent a thank-you. I received some cool postcards, a bookmark and a lovely haiku. One LetterMo letter did not have a return address on so I am sadly unable to reply. One LetterMo letter (to Winnipeg) I intend on writing tomorrow.

I received two Valentine’s Day cards myself; a text message of ‘Thank You’ came from the mother on behalf one niece. (What about the nephew, same household?)

I have sent letters to California, Ohio, Kansas, Colorado, Alabama, Massachusetts (to an address just around the corner from me), Illinois, Indiana, Texas, Virginia, Missouri, Florida, Connecticut, New York, Nebraska, Mississippi, Rhode Island, Minnesota, Canada:  Nova Scotia, Toronto and Calgary Alberta. Overseas in both directions: Belgium and the Netherlands, South Korea and the Philippines.

I wrote one author a fan letter.

THANK YOU EVERYONE who has offered me their addresses, have requested to receive mail and/or let me know it arrived!  I do NOT do this so I can get mail back necessarily, but it IS nice to know something sent was received. Did I miss you?!  I do feel like I’ve failed someone but can’t figure it out…

I know 12 people who celebrate birthdays in March and I intend to mail them each a card.

Looks like my year of letter writing has some strong momentum, wouldn’t you agree?



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Monday Mailbox 2.13.12

  Mailbox Monday 2.13.12, hosted by MetroReader.

I hadn’t visited my BookMooch.com account in a few months and realized that a copy of a book I keep saying I want to read was available so I mooched it:

I’m very excited!  This will be my second Morrison having read The Bluest Eye pre-blogging.

And even though I mentioned this in a prior MM, I only received it Saturday, February 11:

Both books are quite appropriate for this upcoming Holiday, wouldn’t you agree?

♥ Happy Valentine’s Day!  ♥ Will you be mine?  ♥


Copyright © 2007-2012. 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.

Mailbox Monday 2.6.12

So excited to JUST NOW pull this out of my mailbox!  Thanks Nancy!!

And I was able to pick this one up from the library last Thursday for my book club read and I’m half way through already:

I’m finding it quite depressing.

Mailbox Monday for February is hosted by MetroReader.

WHAT BOOKS came into YOUR HOUSE this past week?


Copyright © 2007-2012. 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.

Monday Mailbox 1.30.12

Alyce of At Home With Books is our host this month of the official Mailbox Monday.

   I received the following books in my mailbox:

Lottery by Patricia Wood, a book that Nancy the BookFool gave high marks and an insistent recommendation. I got this at the same time I ordered the Creative Labs mp3 Player that I have already sent back. I am keeping the book. I also ordered

Hearts and Minds by Rosy Thornton because it has been on my want list for years. It hasn’t arrived yet.

The book I should have ordered, meant to order and forgot was this one:

Muscular Retraining for Pain-Free Living by Craig Williamson because my lower back has been out-of-whack and I want to do more strength training.  My PT guy has actually told me that yoga is NOT a good idea right now until my core gets stronger. A massage therapist recommended the book. I have yet to ask PT guy about it.  (PT Guy is very no-nonsense and I’m not sure he has a sense of humor. I have not done much small-talk with him.) Of course, this kind of book isn’t really a read-and-check-off-list but more reference, like a cookbook, wouldn’t you agree?

French Leave by Anna Gavalda, translated from French by Alison Anderson, published by Europa Editions!  Y’all know that I don’t like to read the book blurbs but I did glimpse that it is about family dynamics and is ‘light-hearted, tender and funny’.  I’m looking forward to this.

Take the Cannoli:  Stories from the New World by Sarah Vowell.  Thanks much to Softdrink for sending this AND the one above. I’ve already read the first story but will put it aside until I get to a few of my must reads and this slogger:

HIdeinWhitetoSkipLineI’m on page 454 which is 8 pages away from the mid-point. THE MID-POINT! (read with tone of frustration if you care to.) Tengo has been thinking: “Though not yet entirely confident, he had a kind of presentiment that he might be able to live a somewhat more coherent life than he had so far.”  (I’m a bit baffled; he seemed pretty satisfied with his ‘life so far’.) I tell ya, I don’t know if I’m going to make it. My curiosity is waning knowing how many pages it is going to take to get to a conclusion. I also don’t think Book Two is as well translated (and that has been questioned by others!) than Book One. Bad Omen:  I have read the last page! Uh oh. I did this after about the 20th time of checking how many darn pages are in this thing. I should have purchased the eBook version. And the Twitter chatter from my readalongers has been nonexistent. Where are you, my readalongers?! I have too many books impatiently awaiting my attention. I don’t think Ti would want me to quit but I’m getting bored…

Because look what my friend Holly loaned me.

 Angels and Insects by A.S.Byatt.  Not quite into my mailbox but rather into my hands, but she insists I read so we can discuss. AND it qualifies very nicely for the creepy-crawly category of What’s in a Name 5.  (I know I suggested a readalong of Victor Pelevin’s A Life of Insects (it’s on the 1001 Books list) but I think I might have to postpone (if ever). Sorry to disappoint…)

I have Byatt on my must-get-to author list for 2012 and although I know I said I would try Possession next, methinks this is the better choice right now.

What books did YOU get in your mailbox lately?
Have a Terrific Week!  Happy End of January!!

oh wait. I forgot one…   ZERO: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea by Charles Seife, a book I first learned about on a link at Citizen Reader’s and for some crazy reason, put on hold at the library and even more crazily, picked up and now possess and HOPE to read before it is due February 22.  I have also put on hold — on second thought, since I don’t yet have that book, I will wait and maybe do this mailbox post again next week.


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Anyone interested in the Oscars?

I’m just going to ramble here.    Happy Monday!

First, I’m excited to note that I will be meeting Dawn of Too Fond of Books today for coffee, cinnamon rolls and lingonberries at the Boston area IKEA.   Copley will be in attendance, as well.  Expect photos.

Second,  I have an idea and not sure how to introduce it but maybe bold-on is best…

Anyone interested in playing Twitter Oscar Bingo with me?

I got the idea for the Bingo part from a blog that a friend in KCMO emailed me about and since I don’t have any IRL friends who would likely want to come to my house to watch the big show, I wondered if any of my TWIT friends would want to play.     The origin of the Bingo idea is credited to Jess, the creative genius at How About Orange and the post where she offers up Bingo cards is from last Friday.   <— click on that line to learn more.

MY IDEA is this:   the first 1o people who want to play shall leave me a comment here [and then an email so I can have your snail mail address] and I will send out the cards (actually 8×11 piece of regular copy paper…) and then we agree to twitter our shout outs during the Academy Awards on March 7th.

Whaddya think?   🙂

I can probably have a prize of chocolate cranberries since I live in the cranberry capital of the world.   (I know it’s debatable but so what. Wiki says so…)

I just think it might be fun to sort-of kind-of watch the Oscars with somebody since I’m sure the Hub will toddle off to bed to watch Food Network while I stay late to watch the whole darn thing on the big screen.

Third – I will be the one who gets to recommend a book for the April Book Club and I want to read a book that has had a movie adapted so I’m gathering a list.   Anyone know of something good that will be rentable by April?    I already know that I want to have choices of Up in the Air and The Private Lives of Pippa Lee story (anyone SEEN that one?)   and maybe Children of Men by PD James.   Perhaps Inkheart?

Fourth, books!   I received a few books in the mail this past week.

Typhoid Mary by Anthony Bourdain (finished it yesterday!)

Chow Hounds by Ernie Ward, DVM

Waiting for Columbus by Thomas Trofimuk


Anne Fadiman’s The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down (not in time for photo)


If you want to play Twitter Oscar Bingo – let me know!   Only the first 10…


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Mailbox Monday Jan 18 2010

Welcome to Mailbox Monday!   Actually, I’m listing all the books I brought into the house from all sources and not just the ones I found inside my mailbox…

From my dear friend JoAnne, the Book Zombie, via bookmooch:   Stewart O’Nan’s Songs for the Missing

From the library:  audio-  A Wrinkle in Time / Madeline L’Engle – for discussion soon!

Purchased from the library booksale cart:   Guns Germs and Steel:  The Fates of Human Societies / Jared Diamond

Purchased from the White Birch Bookstore in North Conway NH:    The Fiction Class by Susan Breen, When We Were Romans by Matthew Kneale, and The Best American Short Stories 2009 Edited by Alice Sebold (my husband picked this!   I’ll see if I can’t somehow trick him into reviewing a few).

Purchased from Borders because I was buying a book as a gift and thought I would just check on a few books I keep saying I want to read, so I came home with the paperback of Fear and Loathing:   On the Campaign Trail ’72 by Hunter S Thompson.    I suppose I was somewhat influenced by all the ads on TV right now trying to convince me that Scott Brown is horrible and anti-woman and that Martha Coakley is horrible and wants to spend all my money.    I can’t wait for tomorrow’s election day so that the ads will stop and my phone will cease to ring.

In other news, I ordered cards from Moo – thank you Book Line & Sinker! – that I won and hope to give out with bookmooch and possibly at the book blogger convention in NYC in May.


Copyright © 2010. 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.

New Books in the House! New Books in the House! (and where I continue to procrastinate on reviews…)

So – did I get a DOOZY of a wonderful book present gift last week!

I’ll back up.

You need to know the story.   NO.   Maybe I only need to share the story.  Whatever, here we go.

SOMETIMES when I review (actually it should be ‘give thoughts on’) a book, when a commenter shares that they would LOVE to get the book  and the book in discussion is in my possession, I offer to send said book.

It happened with Oliver Sacks book The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat.   Nymeth wanted it.   I sent it.   To Portugal.   Not a big deal to me, but she made a big deal of it.       OH!!!   see the postnote!!!!


She sent me a sweet thoughtful considerate thank you package!!!






She sent me books.    A book by a beloved Portuguese writer and one that apparently traveled from New Orleans across the pond and now back to me via Chris.  THANKS!!

edqtm rbthtI suppose I should read The Halloween Tree for Rip IV since it’s still October but…   well.  maybe.   I’m actually a bit more anxious to try The Mandarin first.      TOO MANY BOOKS!!!

However, the “piece-of-the-can’t-resist”  (I don’t speak French – do you know what I’m trying to say here?)  is this adorable creature:


If you are new to my blog, then you must reach back to my archives in a past Weekly Geek post where I yap about my lobster mania…

Which brings me to other new books in the house:

From bookmooch:   The Giver (already read and to be reviewed soon) by Lois Lowry,  Jamaica Inn by Daphne DuMaurier.

and from the library:

Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones (already read AND reviewed)

The Vintner’s Luck by Elizabeth Knox (also read and reviewed)

(both of the above for the New Zealand Book Challenge!  I’m not overdosing; don’t worry!)

and Through Black Spruce by Joseph Boyden (blame Softdrink in a comment somewhere – I think to a post on an Alexie Sherman review….)

I think that’s all.

I got Whale Rider from bookmooch, too and YES!  I KNOW!!   goodreads shows it as a currently-reading but I haven’t started.    I’m reading the Boyden book since it’s a library book.   I’ve already had to renew it, SHHhhshsssssh.

so I absolutely love Nymeth – isn’t this internet thing just the coolest?    Did you see her vlog?    so darling.   I love having an image and a voice to go with the thoughts in my head for what you are.    🙂

I thought I had an additional postpostnote but I’ve forgotten it!   woe is me.

oh!   I remember:    I have review/thoughts to post on:

Lolita (scratch)

The Wednesday Sisters

The Giver



Scraps of Thoughts

Today, my friends, on this glorious sunny happy refreshing lovely day (I’m in a good mood), I have just a few itsy bitsy things to share.   At least, that’s what I’m hoping!    Sometimes when I think I have just a few short things I want to yap about, it ends up being 678 words.    I’ll give you a count at the end.


First, I wanted to do a Monday Mailbox but I missed Monday.   I got to work yesterday!   and it was FUN!   well, sort of fun.   And since the teacher I sub for reads this, I’ll share the highlights only.    I got to ask these bright and lively kids about Summer of the Monkeys by Wilson Rawls (doesn’t he make baseball gloves? – who am I thinking of?)   I’ve not read this book, but it was fun to discuss with the students – especially what a cliffhanger is (chapter 4).     And the other English class I got to participate in was  one chapter of To Kill a Mockingbird. I know most of these students from last year – and though they claim not to remember me (ha!),  I really like them all; they’re fun.

OH MY!   What a discussion we had!    Their first question for me was how many questions they ‘had to’do’ after we listened to Sissy Spacek read the text, and I answered them, “Seventeen’.   Oh.  the groans and moans.    “SEVENTEEN!?!??!?!”    You’d have thought I was going to make them eat the dirt off of D___’s shoes.      We really only had five questions to answer (in complete sentences, of course) and I was truly sad to not have more.   I wanted to keep talking, sharing, discussing, and stimulating their young inquisitive minds…  (oh, how they enjoy laughing  at with me)    Alas.       [I suppose I should share that I sub in the Special Education Department?   I’m probably violating some no-sharing rule anyway so – eek!    But this is ok, right?]

SO.   In my mailbox was:    Where the Red Fern Grows by….    — wait for it!  — Wilson Rawls!!!    coincidence?    not really.   anyway.   I also received Green Grass Running Water by Thomas King.   Both bookmooched.      Both because they are classics, (right?)    The King book came recommended by somebody at book club and it might be that teacher I subbed for yesterday!

Next, I will be posting an unusual non-review-just-thoughts about my reading experience with Lolita.    Closed that book last night.     I think that I can quickly say that I was impressed and not impressed and liked it and really didn’t like it.     AND, that I am amazed how many people don’t have any thoughts or recognition come to mind when you say “I’m reading Lolita.”     I actually had to explain to my husband what it was about.    I just figure everyone knows – oops.    And yesterday, somebody at the HS didn’t know anything about Lolita either, and she is a reader.   [She is reading the new Dan Brown.]

FINALLY!!    What  you’ve all been waiting for – if I didn’t lose you by now, is I need help.     Here are the first two sentences of the two books I have chosen to possibly read next.   Both stories are contained in one bound tradeback book by extremely local-to-me author Joyce Keller Walsh.  This is for the Literary Road Trip Challenge.   And both stories are part of The Pittsley Country Chronicles.   I think Juckets comes first.    Bog Men is the 3rd book.

UPDATED!!   I’ve changed my mind – since these books are related, like in a (gasp!) series, I had better read the first one!  Silly me, I was going to ask you to help me decide which to read first.   Nevermind, I will start Juckets today.

Juckets:    WINTER     Saturday, January 12th

“Heart’s no good.  Can’t use it.”

Swamp Yankees:    SPRING    Monday, May 31st (Memorial Day)

“I hate you,” she whispered hoarsely over the bronze gravemarker that lay like a fallen soldier amidst the taller granite headstones.

Yep, too long:   645 words!