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What are Divas reading?

ski diva

Administrator
Staff member
:bump: Thanks to the coronavirus, some of us have some extra time on our hands. So I thought I'd bump this up.

I just finished reading "Collected Stories," by W. Somerset Maugham. I've always been a Maugham fan, and the stories in this are exquisite. It's a hefty book -- 839 pages -- but don't let that put you off. There are 31 short stories, which makes it easy to dip in and out whenever you like. I found it pretty addictive, though, and plowed through the whole thing. LOVED it.

I'd also like to recommend a book that's really appropriate for the current time: "Spillover" by David Quammen. This is nonfiction, and it was first published in 2012. Quammen is a science writer -- I should say a science journalist -- and he writes in a very clean, conversational, understandable manner. The book deals with the transference of diseases from animals to human -- think HIV, ebola, SARS. It's fascinating. A must read to help you gain a better understanding of living in a coronavirus world.
 
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skiwest

Certified Ski Diva
I loved Spillover when I read it a few years ago! I'm enjoying rereading the Harry Potter series (a childhood throwback feels great right now), but other good books I've read recently included Know My Name, A Woman Is No Man, Bad Blood, and King Leopold's Ghost.
 

Jenny

Angel Diva
:bump: Thanks to the coronavirus, some of us have some extra time on our hands. So I thought I'd bump this up.

I just finished reading "Collected Stories," by W. Somerset Maugham. I've always been a Maugham fan, and the stories in this are exquisite. It's a hefty book -- 839 pages -- but don't let that put you off. There are 31 short stories, which makes it easy to dip in and out whenever you like. I found it pretty addictive, though, and plowed through the whole thing. LOVED it.

I'd also like to recommend a book that's really appropriate for the current time: "Spillover" by David Quammen. This is nonfiction, and it was first published in 2012. Quammen is a science writer -- I should say a science journalist -- and he writes in a very clean, conversational, understandable manner. The book deals with the transference of diseases from animals to human -- think HIV, ebola, SARS. It's fascinating. A must read to help you gain a better understanding of living in a coronavirus world.
Sounds good - on hold at the library now, should have it in six months! Also out a hold on another of his - The Tangled Tree. Have you read that one? I'm #1 on that hold.
 

RachelV

Administrator
Staff member
I finished Gone With The Wind recently and really enjoyed it, despite most of the characters being objectively horrible people. If you like historical fiction I definitely recommend it.

Now I'm re-reading the Stand, to remind myself that it could be worse. ;) I have to say, if I survived that kind of pandemic, and THEN had to be part of a battle between good and evil on top of everything else, I'd be VERY UNHAPPY.
 

ski diva

Administrator
Staff member
Sounds good - on hold at the library now, should have it in six months! Also out a hold on another of his - The Tangled Tree. Have you read that one? I'm #1 on that hold.

You know, I'm a real David Quammen fan, and I couldn't get into "The Tangled Tree." Other books of his that I've really enjoyed: "The Flight of the Iguana," "Monsters of God," and "The Song of the Dodo." All these are excellent.
 
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Abbi

Angel Diva
Oh and I'm about half way through @ski diva s first book. It's very good so far, I'm on chapter 21, it's currently my plane book, I don't think I've done too badly getting that far in an hour and a half. I really want to know what happens but I have no time to read at the moment. The Lewis trilogy books I read over about two days, I was reading till 6 am one morning. I either don't read for ages or read 3-4 books back to back in a weekend.

Try living in the general area in which @ski diva set these books! I wonder how many of us have wandered around town or the hills or wherever going ‘is this the place’?! Both books were a whole lot of fun for me!
 

Abbi

Angel Diva
I finished Gone With The Wind recently and really enjoyed it, despite most of the characters being objectively horrible people. If you like historical fiction I definitely recommend it.

Now I'm re-reading the Stand, to remind myself that it could be worse. ;) I have to say, if I survived that kind of pandemic, and THEN had to be part of a battle between good and evil on top of everything else, I'd be VERY UNHAPPY.

when ‘The Stand’ first came out I read the entire book straight through, including staying up all night! Totally freaked me out by how possible, at least the first half of the book could be! And that is not a new book!
 

skiwest

Certified Ski Diva
I finished Gone With The Wind recently and really enjoyed it, despite most of the characters being objectively horrible people. If you like historical fiction I definitely recommend it.

Now I'm re-reading the Stand, to remind myself that it could be worse. ;) I have to say, if I survived that kind of pandemic, and THEN had to be part of a battle between good and evil on top of everything else, I'd be VERY UNHAPPY.

I read Gone with the Wind this year too (for the second time - first time was as a teenager) and really enjoyed it - definitely not in the sense that I'm thinking "ooh, glamorous plantation life!!", but that I can see how powerful it has been in creating and maintaining a toxic mythology about the Old South. From a social perspective, the nuances and variances of the racism displayed by the main characters reads so true and mirrors patterns I see today. Scarlett is also a very complex, original character. Definitely recommend reading it as a unique work of historical fiction.
 

Salomon

Certified Ski Diva
I love to read . And this is a great thread for ideas . It’s nice to have lists of books that you always want but never get around to ...,and there are loads of authors on here that I have never heard of .
I am European ( British by birth , German by marriage , Andorran by residence , French by choice ) ....so I am spoiled for choice from all you American females ...Thanks !
Every year I treat myself to real books ( as opposed to ebooks ) for the summer . They are usually hardback because they are keepers .
Hilary Mantel won the Booker prize for the first 2 books in the trilogy ( Wolf Hall and Bring up The Bodies ) . The 3rd was published a couple of weeks ago , The mirror and the light . I hope it wins a 3rd Booker .
So they republished all in hardback and they arrived last week . Meant for summer but I don’t think they will last that long !
 

newboots

Angel Diva
I’m reading The Good Good Pig: the extraordinary life of Christopher Hogwood
by Sy Montgomery. Lightweight, to be sure, but not too cute. Well-written memoir
 

Christy

Angel Diva
I've read Gone with the Wind so many times. I can quote from it. It's such a page turner. The writing is so good. The fact that MM makes such a truly narcissistic character so sympathetic is quite a feat. If it's in a vacation rental I'll pick it up and that's that. But it's such a problematic book. She's not just describing old racial attitudes--the amount that MM racializes the characters and their bodies! Hardly a page goes by that she doesn't comment on black bodies in some demeaning way. There's a world of difference between what she's doing and say, what Mark Twain is doing in Huck Finn (to name another controversial book). So I hate that I love the book so much; I can totally see why it is so offensive to some. I wish it wasn't like that.
 

ddskis

Certified Ski Diva
Just finished The Orchardist by Amanda Coplin. Lovely story; poignant and deeply rooted in place. Loved reading about her writing process too at the end of the book. Took her 8yrs to complete.

Before that, Raven Stole the Moon by Garth Stein. PNW writer of Tlingit descent. This story was also deeply set in place, and very moving. Unexpected, suspenseful, and enlightening. Both highly recommended!
 

VickiK

Angel Diva
I'm reading a novella by Colleen Hoover on my Kindle. It's about teenagers, love, sex, and drama. I don't know what it's called. I have to finish it in order to read something else.

Poll: Do you feel like you HAVE to finish something you're reading, or else it's a character flaw of some kind?

I have bailed on a few books but I don't like doing it.
 

Jenny

Angel Diva
I'm reading a novella by Colleen Hoover on my Kindle. It's about teenagers, love, sex, and drama. I don't know what it's called. I have to finish it in order to read something else.

Poll: Do you feel like you HAVE to finish something you're reading, or else it's a character flaw of some kind?

I have bailed on a few books but I don't like doing it.
It's got to be pretty bad before I totally bail, but I’ve done it occasionally. Usually I start skimming it pretty quickly, just to get it done.
 

elemmac

Angel Diva
I've been reading Seven Summits by Dick Wells, Frank Bass and Rick Ridgeway. True story of two, middle-aged businessmen's dream to scale the seven summits. Inspiring story of what you can do when you put your mind to something (although it helps to have a healthy bank account as well).

If you're looking for a true mountaineering book, I would steer you elsewhere. Rather this is a story of two unlikely climbers that set out to achieve a goal. It's a story of perseverance, failures and triumphs.
 

VickiK

Angel Diva
I just finished reading The Good Gut, non-fiction, about gut microbiota. I've been on a kick of sorts learning about this topic and the gut-mind connection. Also read Gut: The Inside Story of Our Body's Most Underrated Organ.
 

UtahDesert

Certified Ski Diva
I started a new routine a few months ago--reading four books at a time. I set myself a target of a chapter from each book every day (I often read more, rarely less), and I find that this way I'm actually getting through the many books that pile up on my bedside table and my desk. I aim at a mix of books at any particular point--something like a couple either fiction or literary nonfiction, one in Polish (politics, including political interviews and memoirs), and one relatively practical nonfiction (teaching online, other cognitive psychology topics, political science methods). It really works for me--something about the variety, I guess, and the routine.

So currently it's Renato Cisneros, The Distance Between Us (memoir about his relationship with his father, who was a military strongman in Peru); Ellen Kushner and Delia Sherman, The Fall of Kings (just a fun read, sword-and-sorcery); a book-length interview with Poland's aspiring authoritarian leader; and a book on process tracing in political science. Next up is probably Mary Karr's Lit, and Camus's The Plague. I recently read the first book in the old Trixie Belden series (a hoot, for nostalgia purposes), I finally finished a collection of previously untranslated pieces by Colette, and I managed to make my way through a detective novel by an old professor of mine who frankly doesn't write that well. I like to occasionally read bad fiction (but not bad nonfiction), because I think I learn from seeing what doesn't work.
 

Jenny

Angel Diva
OMG, Trixie and Honey! That must have been hilarious!

I’m reading something all the time, but one fiction book I just finished, The Woman in the Photo, was pretty interesting, set at the time of the Johnstown flood tragedy.
 

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