WWW Wednesday – My Reading Week

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Each Wednesday at “Taking on a World of Words“, we are asked to answer the 3 Ws about our reading.
Here’s a glimpse of my current reading life, over the past week:

What are you currently reading?

Reading Chapter 8 this week of The Magic Words by Cheryl B. Klein for the FB book study.

I have started – Feversong by Karen Moning. It is a lengthy book and due back to the library within 2 weeks so I must forge ahead!

I hope to finish this week:
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

I haven’t read anything from these books although I am still determined to finish them:
Sixty by Ian Brown
GMC (Goal, Motivation and Conflict) by Debra Dixon

What have I read the past week?
Wish by Barbara O’Connor – A very touching MG novel – and I loved it!
A Thread So Thin by Marie Bostwick. I enjoyed although it did not grab me as much as the first. I still hope to read book 3.

I seemed to read a lot of ebooks this week – maybe because Feversong was intense and I was trying to finish the other books. Getting free books from Freebooksy, for one, means I always have a ready supply of ebooks to read – and I find some new writers to search out. Kris Pearson is one I found this week and thoroughly enjoyed.
Melting His Heart by Kris Pearson – a romance
A couple of fantasies as well:
Bear to Love by Amy Lamont
Claimed by Evangeline Anderson

What do you plan to read next?
Books still on my radar:
The Hobbit
On Writing by Stephen King
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

 

Also Linking with
Modern Ms. Darcy’s Quick Lit

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Slice of Life Tuesday

11454297503_e27946e4ff_hToday is Slice of Life Tuesday – the weekly writing challenge hosted at “Two Writing Teachers”.

Three things this past week have really been resonating, and causing me to pause and reflect.
1. Last Wednesday, I was waiting for my hubby to finish rehab when I saw a picture of Stuart McLean on the news and then the words memorial. No, he couldn’t have died. He was only 68!
It took a long ten minutes before I saw the message at the bottom of the screen, that yes indeed, one of the best storytellers in our time had died. We knew he had been battling cancer, but we didn’t know just how serious it had been.
We had been to three of his show and listened endlessly to his stories about Dave and Morley. “Dave Cooks the Turkey” was probably my favourite story. But there are so many to treasure. He had a way of drawing you in, hooking you as he meandered and had us laughing and even crying as he shared his wonderful stories. (Check here to listen to some)
His death shook me – he always seemed so larger than life, so centred, so vital. He was a mentor to many and gave joy to all who heard him. No more stories – although I can listen to his CDs over and over.
Life isn’t fair and we don’t know how long we have. Stuart McLean lived well and shared his passion in so many ways. Thank you Stuart for all the joy you’ve given me. I already miss you.

2. A few days ago, I was doing what I usually do each day – visiting my favourite blogs to see what was new. When I visited “Positively Present”, the quote at the top struck me deeply.
Thinking about living is not the same as living.” These words are by Erin Loechner, from her book “Chasing Slow”
Being online, seeking out new ideas and new blogs, always looking for something – seems to be a regular habit, but is that really living? Are we really showing our real selves?
Erin would say no – so much of us is hidden. Spending so much time online also causes us to doubt ourselves it seems, makes us think we are not enough. I know I feel that – and so I seek more and more, trying to find that one thing that will make life perfect. But it isn’t and never will be. And that’s okay.
We just need to live – live out loud and off-line.

3. As I was finishing writing this, my favourite show “This is Us” came on and I settled in to watch.
I am continually moved by the interactions of these characters and the brilliance of the show. Tonight was no different. And when Randall’s birth father offered some advice, it seemed like the universe was really hitting me with one more admonition to just live and live my best life.
William’s advice: “Roll down the windows. Turn up the music.”
In other words, live our imperfect lives to the fullest; don’t be afraid to really live. I hope I can take this truly to heart.

WWW Wednesday – My Reading Week

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Each Wednesday at “Taking on a World of Words“, we are asked to answer the 3 Ws about our reading.
Here’s a glimpse of my current reading life, over the past two weeks (I missed last week):

What are you currently reading?
Reading Chapter 7 this week of The Magic Words by Cheryl B. Klein for the FB book study.
I hope to finish this week:
Wish by Barbara O’Connor
A Thread So Thin by Marie Bostwick
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

I haven’t read anything from these books although I am still determined to finish them:
Sixty by Ian Brown
GMC (Goal, Motivation and Conflict) by Debra Dixon

What have I read the past 2 weeks?
Ms.Bixby’s Last Day by John David Anderson LOVED it! What a tribute to the “good ones”.
Magyk by Angie Sage Thoroughly enjoyed it. Hope to read more of this series.
I read the next 2 in the series of fantasy books by Isabel Cooper:
The Highland Dragon’s Lady
Night of the Highland Dragon

As well, I read the romance Buffalo Valley by Debbie Macomber.

I also read several fantasy ebooks which I enjoyed:
Healing Hands by Kellie McAllen
Jarek by Celia Kyle
Fugitive Mate by Anastasia Wilde

I read a number of picture books as well and thoroughly enjoyed:
Radiant Child by Javaka Steptoe
Hana Hashimoto Sixth Violin by Chieri Uegoki

What do you plan to read next?
My next book will be Feversong by Karen Moning. I just picked it up from the library today and have been waiting awhile for it. Can’t wait to read this final book in her Fever series.

I was reminded recently of the #MustReadin2017 challenge I signed up for in January and as I looked over my list, I realized I hadn’t read any of these books yet. So the first 3 books I must read are:
The Hobbit
On Writing by Stephen King
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen ( I have never read this or even seen the movie!)

Yes, I still plan to read:
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

Also Linking with
Modern Ms. Darcy’s Quick Lit

Slice of Life Tuesday

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Today is Slice of Life Tuesday – the weekly writing challenge at “Two Writing Teachers”

As I was thinking about what to write for SOL this morning, I came across a post by Paula. I read her “Currently – A Life List” post and I was inspired. I realized that I had so many things swirling around me, it was hard to focus on one thing. So, I am adapting her list to suit my purpose.

 

Currently

Looking Around My Home

-carnations still blooming

-piles of paper to sort

-dishes to do-a long to-do list

 

As I Ponder…

-my husband’s health

-planning for a special dinner tonight

-all that needs to be done

-the news

-the review I need to do

 

What I am Learning

-how to develop a character in my writing – from Cheryl Klein’s Chapter 7 (what I’m reviewing for a weekly book study) of her fascinating book The Magic Words

-how to use my new Fitbit (my Valentine gift from my hubby)

 

What I’m creating

-a new “speak out” card for the weekly challenge at ABC Wednesday

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What I’m Reading

-week by week, The Magic Words, a chapter at a time

But then I have a few I’m reading right now – can’t have just one book at a time!:

Wish by Barbara O”Connor

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

A Thread So Thin by Marie Bostwick

 

What I’m Watching

Right now, The View is on for background noise – although I had to watch the opening – just to hear Whoopie’s thoughts about Trump et all.

 

What’s happening in your life right now?

 

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

 

Book Review of “The Lost Girl of Astor Street”

I feel honoured to be part of the blog tour for Stephanie Morrill’s book  The Lost Girl of Astor Street.

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Stephanie Morrill’s novel really does have it all – the historic feel of 1920’s Chicago, a mystery full of twists and turns, an intriguing heroine and several interesting characters.
It is a fascinating portrayal of Chicago – of speakeasies and mobs, of the fashions and society or the era. It draws you in and makes you feel you were there.

As we come to know Piper Sail, we get drawn into the mystery of her friend Lydia’s disappearance. As Piper struggles to find her best friend, she is joined by Mariano Cassano, a handsome detective who is eager to help her.

I found the book hard to put down, trying to discover the truth behind the disappearance and to find out what had happened to Lydia. I wanted to know more about Piper and the men involved in her life- from her father (a mob lawyer) to her friend Walter, but especially Mariano. It was definitely a page-turner, one I couldn’t put down until I (almost) solved the mystery.
I hope there will be more stories about Piper. She has the makings of an intriguing detective.
I highly recommend this YA mystery novel. See if you can solve the mystery!

Book Summary:

Lydia has vanished.

Lydia, who’s never broken any rules, except falling in love with the wrong boy. Lydia, who’s been Piper’s best friend since they were children. Lydia, who never even said good-bye.

Convinced the police are looking in all the wrong places, eighteen-year-old Piper Sail begins her own investigation in an attempt to solve the mystery of Lydia’s disappearance. With the reluctant help of a handsome young detective, Piper goes searching for answers in the dark underbelly of 1924 Chicago, determined to find Lydia at any cost.

When Piper discovers those answers might stem from the corruption strangling the city—and quite possibly lead back to the doors of her affluent neighborhood—she must decide how deep she’s willing to dig, how much she should reveal, and if she’s willing to risk her life of privilege for the sake of the truth.

From the glitzy homes of the elite to the mob-run streets of 1920s Chicago, Stephanie Morrill’s jazz-age mystery shows just how far a girl will go to save her friend.

About the Author:

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Stephanie Morrill is the creator of GoTeenWriters.com and the author of several young adult novels, including the historical mystery, The Lost Girl of Astor Street. Despite loving cloche hats and drop-waist dresses, Stephanie would have been a terrible flapper because she can’t do the Charleston and looks awful with bobbed hair. She and her near-constant ponytail live in Kansas City with her husband and three kids.

Visit Stephanie Morrill blog here.

Order The Lost Girl of Astor Street  here.

WWW Wednesday- My Week of Reading

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Each Wednesday at “Taking on a World of Words“, we are asked to answer the 3 Ws about our reading.
Here’s a glimpse of my current reading life, over the past week:

What are you currently reading?
I am continuing my study/read through of a chapter of The Magic Words by Cheryl B. Klein for the FB book study. (we’re on Chapter 5)

I have made some progress with and hope to finish this week
Wish by Barbara O’Connor
Ms.Bixby’s Last Day by John David Anderson

I am still reading: A Thread So Thin by Marie Bostwick
I haven’t read anything from these books although I am still determined to finish them:
Sixty by Ian Brown
GMC (Goal, Motivation and Conflict) by Debra Dixon
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

What have I read this past week?
Wenjack by Joseph Boyden. A small but powerful book. It looks at the death of a young boy who has come to represent the worst of the residential schools.
Heartstone by Elle Katharine White – a most enjoyable fatasy
I also read 2 romances, both of which I enjoyed:
Always Mine by Ruth Cardello
Christmas on my Mind by Janet Dailey

I thoroughly enjoyed a children’s non-fiction picture book:
Finding Winnie by Lindsay Mattick – an exceptionally well written exploration of the true story of the bear that inspired Winnie-the-Pooh, written by the grand-daughter of the man who rescued Winnie.

What do you plan to read next?
The next book will be: The Lost Girl of Astor Street by Stephanie Morrill, as I will be posting a review next week.

I have 2 books from the library based on a retelling of the fairy tale Rapunzel and hope to start on either and eventually do a comparison:
Grounded by Megan Morrison
Bitter Greens by Kate Forsyth
I still plan to read:
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
And finish (finally!!) The Hobbit

Slice of Life Tuesday

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Today is Slice of Life Tuesday – the weekly writing challenge hosted at Two Writing Teachers.

 

I have been politics obsessed for months, once again. I thought I had it bad during Trudeau’s bid for leadership during Canada’s last election.

This time, the outcome of an election is having a toxic effect all around the world.

Our Canadian newspapers and television have run numerous editorials about what is happening. We cannot ignore what is happening. And, now we have had a terrorist attack in Quebec City, by a white supremacist inspired by D.T.

I am saddened, worried, scared, angry – a whole range of negative emotions.

But, I have also been encouraged and proud of:

-the huge outpouring of support for the Muslims, both in the States facing the ban and those in Canada affected by the killings.

-the women and the men who marched in the “Women’s March” on Jan. 25th – all over the world

-the people who are phoning their representatives

-the mass twitter explosion of political hashtags –  #resist, #speakout, #BeASally

 

I have started a new project for a challenge I’ve taken part in for a number of years. I am creating SPEAK OUT art cards, with quotes encouraging us to be a part of protecting democracy.

Here are some of the cards I have done so far:

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