Home » Books » The Year in Books – January, 2016

The Year in Books – January, 2016

Fresh new year to try and achieve my Good Reads goal of reading 20 books.  I failed last year and did not read 24 so yes, I did lower my standards a tad!  Once upon a time there was no Internet and no car, thus long bus rides.  A lot.  A LOT.  A LOT more books were read.  Then came children, house stuff, faffing on the Internet.  Next thing you know, reading one book a month is a challenge.  This needs to stop.  I have always loved reading.  Way back in elementary school, my friends Lynne and Kathy and I spent more time in the library than anywhere else.  I’d love to know just how many books we read in that itty-bitty Boucherville Elementary School library.  Lynne and I read every single Chica D’Oro book the school had (call them Nancy Drew on horseback, if you will) I had to look up some titles as they were long gone from my memory:  Linda Craig and the Palomino Mystery was the first.  The palomino in question was called Chica D’Oro.  And of course, we read all the Black Stallion books.  Okay, Lynne may have been the instigator of all books horse as she was MAD about horses.

Kathy and I quickly moved into Harlequin Romance stories (don’t even!).  That girl was the fastest reader I have ever known! I could never keep up with her rhythm. We would sit in her backyard and read away the day.

Eventually I moved into historical romance – to this day my favourites are still Kathleen E. Woodiwiss (The Wolf and the Dove, The Flame and the Flower, Shanna! These ladies were something else.  I swear, if I had had a daughter, her name was definitely going to be Shanna.), Bertrice Small (the Skye O’Malley series… yum), Rosemary Rogers (Sweet, Savage Love…oh my…) Yes, there were many of that sort, I canna lie!  I gobbled them up.  We shared books.  Books went the rounds: from my mother, to me, to my sisters, to my friends.

After a while, I grew tired of these types of books – though I am not adverse to reading one here or there – as they started feeling redundant.

I discovered James A. Michener and his sweeping tales, giving me a history lesson woven into a wonderful story:  Texas, Chesapeake, Tales of the South Pacific, to name but a few.  Too difficult to name a favourite.

Boyfriends and other friends introduced me to such books as Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, A Trilogy in Four Parts, books I would NEVER have thought of reading!

Since then, I have touched on many genres and loved, cried, laughed, sighed, hated so many along the way.  I am now open to reading almost anything, quite frankly.  Having gone to a French high school, I felt I missed out on the classics, so I decided to start reading some of them.  For Whom the Bell Tolls, by Ernest Hemmingway (totally hated it, by the way – I know, I know, heresy!) is one of them! The Brönte sisters, Jane Austin, etc.  I could go on and on.  Actually, I have gone on and on.  Apologies!

Now I have become part of this fabulous world in the Blogosphere.  I am constantly amased by the circles created.  You discover one blog, comment on it, read the other comments, check out the commenters blogs.  New circle formed.  Somehow, I cannot even tell you how, I have ended up in a circle of published authors.  Or rather, a few circles with published authors amongst them.  The first book I read by bloggers I followed – The Great Jollyhoombah (so sad they no longer blog) was The End of Wishing Our Days Away, by Tammy and CJ Renzi, a lovely, hilarious couple who shared in the blogging duties and co-wrote the book.  Was a most enjoyable read.

The second time I read a blogger’s book was Timesmudger, by Gillian Smellie.  I love young adult lit as much as anything else and I truly enjoyed this one.  A click on the link will bring you to my review of said book.

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This was the start of something!  Now that I’ve rambled on and on, allow me to introduce my reads for the month of January.  Yes, I am feeling very optimistic and will read not one but two books this month!  Both are women I met through my weekly Friday Fictioneers “Club”.  The first is Claire Fuller’s Our Endless Numbered Days.  I’ve barely begun it and am already drawn in.  I think I’ll be gobbling this one up!

My second choice is the long-awaited (by me) sequel to Please Say Kaddish For Me by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields that I read back in JuneFrom Silt and Ashes is the continuing story of Havah, her husband, Arel and some family members as they flee the pogroms in Russia to the supposed liberty in United States.  I cannot wait to sink my teeth into this one!

Laura, over at Circle of Pine Trees is the hostess of this group of readers.  Unfortunately she no longer has the link up for our posts, but she can still be found here.


16 thoughts on “The Year in Books – January, 2016

  1. The Wolf and the Dove – I downloaded a copy last year to re-read it. It wasn’t as good as I remembered but still brought back lots of good memories. I loved coming to your house and borrowing your mom’s books.
    If I remember correctly, we bumped into each other years later in a drugstore on Sherbrooke St, where I was purchasing a book. I still read a lot. A Lot!
    Happy reading. 📖📚
    Hugs 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    • I know what you mean! I actually bought the boxed set of these books. Funny how at the time they were soooo yummy!
      Yes indeed. At Cumberland drugstore in Westmount where we renewed our friendship!
      Oh, I’ve no doubt you do! 💗💖📖📙📘📗


  2. Dear Dale,

    It’s getting harder and harder to keep up, isn’t it? I don’t dare make a reading goal for myself. Although, over the past few years I’ve made it my goal to catch up on some of the classics I’ve missed. But if I make a list I get overwhelmed.
    Then there is the writing. 😉
    Your picture makes me smile. Claire’s book is unusual and haunting. I’ll be interested in seeing your reaction to it and discussing it with you over coffee…or wine.
    Naturally, I hope you’ll like From Silt and Ashes as much as you did Please Say Kaddish for Me.

    Happy reading, my friend.


    Liked by 1 person

    • It is indeed! Add to the books the blogs and in no time overwhelm takes over!
      Oh…I make no lists! Go with the flow for me!
      That we will do and I’ve no doubt I’ll be devouring yours just as much as I did PSKFM!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Here’s to books! By the way, I have to agree on For Whom the Bell Tolls. Sounds to me like I need to pay more attention to books by bloggers, something I’ve limited experience with.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ooops… sorry about that first response. Hit send by accident! So… how comforting to know I am not the only one who didn’t care for Mr. Hemmingway. As I was reading it, I kept saying “Just blow up the bloody bridge already!” (Hated Anna Karenina, too…)
      When I realised that some bloggers I follow had written books, I figured the least I could do was encourage them and read their stuff. So far I’ve read four and I’ve another three waiting in the trenches! Not once have I been disappointed. Makes sense. If I enjoy reading their posts, their books should be enjoyable too!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Dale! Like you, I love my reading. There are years when it ebbed and years when it flowed. Lately I’ve been reading nonfiction (mostly science and human evolution) but I am returning to the classics. My favorite classics are The Picture of Dorian Gray (Oscar Wilde), The Awakening (Kate Chopin), Madame Bovary (Flaubert), and The Sun Also Rises (Hemingway). Of all the books in the world, my favorite of all time is Love in the Time of Cholera (Gabriel Garcia Marquez). I also love Jonathan Krakauer, especially Into Thin Air.

    Ok, I am getting myself all worked up here. Let’s cheers to some mighty fine reading in 2016! Cheers!!!!

    You are so thoughtful to mention missing our blog. I am so happy I can still be in touch with some of the wonderful people we met! The Great Jollyhoombah was a lot of fun and silliness. I can assure you we’re still at it.

    So glad you’re still writing! XO!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I couldn’t NOT mention you two! Yours was the first “blogger buddy” book I read!
      I definitely want to read Love in the Time of Cholera and I have a copy of Madame Bovary in French just waiting for me to pick it up. Great additions for my list you’ve given me! (Then again, you guys were always suggestion great reads!)
      Very happy to hear you’re still at it.
      And yes, more than ever. I’m really enjoying expanding my writing horizons.
      Happy New Year to you fabulous Hoombahs! xoxo


  5. Interesting to hear about the books you’ve read over the years. My life-long love of reading began when I was three and my father read Kipling’s Just So Stories to me. The first I remember reading to myself were the Winnie the Pooh books. And then the Raggedy Ann books. I do go back a ways.

    Liked by 1 person

    • So happy I invited you to go down memory lane! I just remebered I also loved the Beverly Cleary and Judy Blume books…Bobsey Twins, Nancy Drew…oh dear!/I think I could do a whole other post!


  6. Reading even one book a month would be challenging for me, but you are very inspiring and make me want to step up my reading and maybe writing. Didn’t really think writing was my talent but I do love journaling sometimes.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Then go for it, I say. The name of your blog is great!
      To tell the truth, one book per month will be a challenge!
      I love inspiring people… Thank you.


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