Saturday, April 1, 2017

Books Read - Week in Review - W/E - 4/1/2017

It is spring but still doesn't feel like it here - a few mounds of snow still remain and although we are getting some heavy rain, some areas not too far away are getting more snow.  This past week we had an unexpected guest on our deck eating some seed we had thrown out for the birds.  (Very unusual to see a red fox like this in my backyard but apparently his food supply is scarce.) 

 This past week found me watching more movies at times than time spent reading books: My Cousin Vinny, As Good as it Gets, Something's Gotta Give and Dan in Real Life -- all movies I've seen before and LOVE.

 This Week in Books 

St. Martin's Press - 2017

Inspired by the story of a NYC woman named Margaret Fishback, this fictionalized story just didn't work well for me. Lillian Boxfish is a woman who has lived and worked in NYC since 1934 and on New Year's eve in1984, at the age of 85, she walks and walks the city reflecting on her half-century of life living and working in New York City and all the changes that have taken place. 

(I tried the audio and then the print edition but, ultimately, this just wasn't a book for me. DNF)

The Futures; Anna Pitoniak
Lee Bourdreaux Books - 2017

(My Thoughts) - This was a fun debut novel about a young couple, Julie and Evan, who meet and fall in love while students at Yale. Their backgrounds are quite different - Evan is from a working class family in Canada and Julie family are wealthy Bostonians.  After college the couple moves in together full of love and plans but their career paths are totally different. Evan's job for a hedge fund in the midst of a financial crisis requires long hours and missed communication opportunities with Julie. It's no surprise when their relationship begins to tank but, ultimately all in not lost.  Told in alternating chapters, The Futures was an engaging story about young lives, young love and all the hopes and uncertainties in life that sometimes makes holding a relationship together challenging. (4/5 STARS) 

Widowmaker; Paul Doiron
Macmillan Audio - 2016

(My Thoughts) -- Mike Bowditch is a Maine game warden who is approached by an attractive woman named Amber who needs his help. Her adult son is missing and she him claiming that he is Mike's half brother. Mike's father, Jack is dead and even when he was alive their relationship was strained as his father had a history of violence. Reluctant to look into Adam's disappearance, he can't quite resist knowing the truth which leads him to some strange and often dangerous situations.  A hybrid wolf, sexual predators and vigilante justice in the snowy, mountainous terrain of Maine are just some of the things this game warden uncovered, making for an interesting and at times addictive audio book listen. This was my first book by this author and although it was part of a mystery series, starting out midway I didn't have any problem following the story. I'd definitely try other books by this author. (4/5 stars)

 Green Pants; Kenneth Kraegel
Candlewick Press - 2017

(My Thoughts) A beautiful kids book with delightful illustrations that many parents with young people will be able to relate to.  Jameson is a spunky young boy with a mind of his own and a unique style of his own --- he insists on wearing "green pants" day after day. His parents love his independence and go with flow until he is asked to be in his cousin's wedding party where ---gasp--he must wear black pants!  Terrific fun to read over and over and, a great resolution as well. (5/5 stars)

Rain, Sam Usher
Templar / Candlewick - 2017

(My Thoughts) - The cover and illustrations are amazing, almost multi dimensional. Narrated by a young boy who wakes up to a rainy day and can't wait to go outside and play.  His granddad thinks they should stay indoors until the rain stops, but the boy is persistent, waiting for the opportunity for new adventures outdoors. Overall, a beautifully illustrated and engaging rainy day adventure that is sure to please little ones in the 2-6 age range.  This book is #2 of a seasonal series that began with "Snow"(5/5 stars)

Books Read in March

  1. Among the Lesser Gods; Margo Catts - (arc) - 4.5/5 - March/2017
  2. First Women; Kate Anderson Brower - (audio) - 3.5/5 - March/2017
  3. The Residence; Kate Anderson Brower (audio) - 4/5 - March/2017
  4. What I Know For Sure; Oprah Winfrey (NF) (Audio) - 5/5 - March/2017
  5. Books for Living; Will Schwalbe (NF) (audio) - 5/5 - March/2017
  6. Every Living Thing; Cynthia Ryland - (my shelves) - 4.5/5 - March/2017
  7. Ill Will; Dan Chaon (eGalley) - 4/5 - March/2017
  8. All the Stars in the Heavens; A. Trigiani (library) - 2/5 - March/2017
  9. The Widowmaker; Paul Doiron (audio) - 4/5 - March/2017
  10. The Futures; Anna Pitoniak (arc) - 4/5 March/2017
  11. Green Pants; Kenneth Kraegel - 5/5 March/2017
  12. Rain; Sam Usher - 5/5 - March/2017
Favorite March Reads 

New arrivals by mail this week
(minus the 14 year old cat)


  1. Lillian Boxfish sounds like Harold Fry relocated. So impressive that you are still blogging. Hope all is well in your world.


  2. Too bad Lillian Boxfish wasn't for you, I really enjoyed it! Books for Living is coming up soon for me... almost at the top of the library hold list.

  3. I'm seeing a lot of positive reviews for Ill Will. May have to pick that one up.

  4. A fox at your door! How amazing! I'm reading Beartown now. Good, not A Man Called Ove, but good.

  5. Wow! That's awfully close for a fox. We had one that used to visit our backyard sometimes but he always stayed towards the edges. Great books this week! I really want The Break Down and now I'm curious about Books for Living since I see it made your favorites for the month. Have a great week!

  6. Too bad about Lillian Boxfish. I love the look of the children's books. The fox must have been hungry?

  7. I love the photos! The red fox is wonderful, and the cat is looking out at it!

    Enjoy your new books, and have a terrific weekend, Diane!

  8. What an incredible photo! I'm surprised he wasn't scared off with you so close at the window. He must have really needed that seed. Hoping for April showers for all of us. Because more reading! 🙂

  9. It's hard to believe there are still places with snow. It's so sunny and pleasant here. The Santa Ana winds have kicked up though--and, boy, do I hate them. They don't call them the devil winds for nothing.

    That's too bad about Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk. I guess they all can't be winners, can they? I love the cover of Rain. I am glad to see you enjoyed it! I will have to keep my eye out for that one. Beartown sounds good. I hope it is. I have a copy of that one too.

    I hope you have a great week, Diane!

  10. It's hard for me to believe there's snow somewhere because spring has sprung down here.

    I should finish The Futures tonight or tomorrow and, so far, I'm really enjoying it, even though I don't like what Julia's done.

  11. I literally just finished Lillian Boxfish this morning! I'm sorry it didn't work for you...I liked it. 4 stars for me.

    And I loved Books for Living on audio as well...have now been trying to listen to a couple books it added to my TBR list (Murakami's running memoir, Gift from the Sea, Song of Solomon, and Bird by Bird).

  12. Love reading your thoughts! I just finished reading Ann Patchett's "Commonwealth". I hope you are having a lovely weekend. Hugs!

  13. That is a nice bunch of interesting reads! That fox is way too close, yikes!

  14. Hoping you get some sun and warmer temps this week. I posted my March reading list yesterday:

  15. The Oprah book looks good. Sorry you didn't enjoy Lillian Boxfish, but sometimes we just don't connect with the characters.

    Enjoy your week!

  16. Ooh what a pretty fox! What a nice surprise visit. You read a good variety of books. I'm most interested in The Futures. I hadn't heard of that one but I'll be looking for it.

  17. Sorry to hear Lillian Boxfish didn't work for you--I'm on the wait list for the audio at my library and am looking forward to it. I hope it works for me--premise and cover look great, but you know what they say about books and their covers!

    Love the photo of the fox--we have them in our neighborhood, but they keep us much at a distance than that!

    Happy reading.


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