"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Monday, December 8, 2014

TTT and Sunday Salon rolled into one

Today is Monday, halfway between Sunday Salon and Top Ten Tuesday. Since I didn't get to my weekly post on Sunday I am combining the two together. TTT visitors, feel free to read the whole blog post or just read the information about authors I was introduced to in 2014, leave a comment, and head on to the next person on the list.

Weather: Gray, cloudy, and rainy. Pretty depressing weather, actually.

Top Ten Tuesday: What authors did I read for the first time in 2014? Over half of the books I read this year were written by authors I hadn't read before. Since a list of over 50 people would be pretty boring, here are ten that I particularly enjoyed:
  1. Ruth Ozeki---I just finished A Tale for the Time Being and LOVED it. You might know her from a previous book I haven't read, My Year of Meats.
  2. JoJo Moyes---I cried my way through the last half of Me Before You. I see her books everywhere. I was slow coming to the Moyes party but I have arrived now.
  3. Rudolfo Anaya---written in the 1970 his Bless Me, Ultima is a classic. the guy has written many, many books with Ultima being his most famous.
  4. Emily Carrol---lovers of graphic novels will be very familiar with Ms. Carrol. She has a large on-line presence. Through the Woods is my first of her graphic novels i've read, this one being a series of haunting/horror short sotries with very creepy illustrations.
  5. Louise Erdrich---I'm ashamed to say that Round House is my fist novel from this celebrated author. I HIGHLY recommend it to anyone who will listen.
  6. Stephanie Kuehn---Ms. Kuehn is a relatively new author. I read two of her books this year, Complicit and her debut novel, Charm and Strange.
  7. Nick Hornby---one of those authors I've been meaning to read but never got around to reading until this year.
  8. Alice Munro---I read one of her short story collections while traveling in Europe this past summer. I decided it was high time after she won the Nobel Prize in Literature, for goodness sake.
  9. Helene Wecker---loved her book The Golem and the Jinni. I think (but I'm not sure) that it was her debut novel.
  10. Leslye Walton---The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender. I'm sure that this is Ms. Walton's debut piece. I enjoyed it a lot. See my review below.
Second week of advent: word for the week PEACE (last week's word was HOPE.) During church yesterday we sang the lovely, old hymn Lo, How a Rose e'er Blooming. If you aren't familiar with it, it is so, so lovely and meditative.

Cue the music: This week is another holiday song, this one sung by the a cappella group, Home Free. Have a listen while you read the rest of the blog post.

Recipe of the week: Baked Brie with Kahlua/ Pecan topping. We took this as our appetizer to a holiday party on Saturday. Everyone circled around for seconds. I watched. Super easy to make.

Jigsaw puzzle: We tend to only put together jigsaw puzzles during the holidays. My daughter and I started working on one Friday afternoon and spent the better part of the week-end hunched over it.  Now all that is left are the hard bits!  Ha!

Books completed this week:
  • Blue Horses by Mary Oliver. Her newest poetry collection.
  • Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. A thoughtful book about the quality of life.
Currently reading:
  • Half Bad by Sally Green. I'm not sure it counts since I didn't crack it open all week.
  • My True Love Gave to Me: Twelve Holiday Stories edited by Stephanie Perkins. not sure this collection is my cup of tea, but I'm only on the third story. I'll withhold judgment until i've read a few more.
  • The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. I'm on page 130 of 778. Need I say more?
And the big news around our house: The University of Oregon Ducks are going to the College Football Play-offs as the number 2 seed. Don and I just bought tickets to fly to the Rose Bowl in California to see the game.  Yippee! We still need tickets to the game but hope they won't be that hard to come by.


  1. I haven't read anything from a lot of these authors. Will have to look into them more. Thanks for sharing.
    here's mine

    I also have a $30 gift certicate to Amazon giveaway, so check that out if you want.

    1. I know. It is overwhelming to look at the lists of other readers and not see a single author I recognize on the list. Guess it keeps us reading.

  2. I'm so pleased to see you're enjoying Jojo Moyes. Me Before You is heartbreaking, but I think it's a beautiful book. She's a great writer! My TTT

  3. I've been crazy about Nick Hornby for years, but I've primarily loved his columns. Check those out, if you get a chance.

    I'd love to have you stop by and take a look atmy list!

  4. Yay for Alice Munro and Helene Wecker (both ended up on my list this week too)! I didn't add Ruth Ozeki on my list this week but I did read Tale for the Time Being this year and found it immensely fascinating, it left me with a lot of thoughts :) Great list!

    My TTT

  5. I've been meaning to read charm and strange for ages!!! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  6. I don't think I've read any of the authors on your list...though I do have Jojo Moyes and Nick Hornby on my radar

    My TTT is here.

  7. The Golem and the Jinni was so so so good. I hope she writes something else soon! I have The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender in my pile to read, I'm really looking forward to that. Here's my TTT: https://guninactone.wordpress.com/2014/12/09/top-ten-tuesday-new-to-me-authors-i-read-in-2014/

  8. All the authors on your list are still new to me, I will have to check them out!
    New follower :)
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings
    Enter my blog birthday giveaway!

    1. Welcome. I was surprised how few authors I had read when I looked at others lists, too.

  9. Erdrich is spotty, but the Roundhouse was incredible. As for A Tale for the Time being, you already know I loved it. I can't think of many books I've read recently that I've thought about so much afterward. I think the philosophy of it and the beauty of the idea of the Time-Being have changed my life.

    1. I know. The Roundhouse was amazing. And I loved your question is the title A Tale for the Time Being or Time-being.? I keep thinking about it.

  10. Wow enjoy the Rose Bowl. It's always terrific! I need to read The Roundhouse and should also read A Tale for the Time Being. Thanks for the push on those.

  11. Haven't read many of your picks but several are on my TBR list. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Have a great week! :D


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