Favorite book stores and changing reading habits.

There are so many bookstores I have visited in my life and have enjoyed them all.  When I was growing up Waldenbooks was my favorite haunt.  I spent many a happy hour and blew most of my money there, well I loved the arcades back then too.  I loved getting a gift certificate for Waldenbooks for Christmas.  Book stores, new or used, were my home away from home.  The rush of getting a new pile of books and deciding which to read.  Things haven’t changed really, just the stores themselves.

Waldenbooks gave way to Border’s and then gave way to Barns and Noble.  When I moved to the other side of the pond and lived in Ireland for a few years, small independent book shops were  my new home away from home.  I loved spending a wet and dreary Saturday afternoon perusing aisle after aisle spending hours on end deciding which new book to buy.  As I became unemployed and money became tight used bookstores became a saving grace for my voracious reading appetite.  Another move, another country and store names changed but my book buying habits becomes more strained.  The only major bookstore in England very rarely had the titles I was looking for and I became disillusioned for the first time in my book buying lifetime.  I turned more and more to Amazon to get the books that interested me.  As time went by I missed looking through a bookstore.  When Kindles came along I immediately bought one.  I figured I was buying most of my books from Amazon and living in a small house with limited shelf space the Kindle became my go to way to read.  Slowly as time went buy I bought less and less paper books.  I found the cost of a DTB more expensive than the kindle versions and I couldn’t justify spending £10 for a paperback when I can get the same book on Kindle for half the price if not less.

Now I only buy a hardcover if it is a book I truly love, or I am going to a book signing. In saying that I have discovered a bookstore that I have fallen in love with, not with the same intensity of previous bookstores, but one that makes me happy.  There are only three of these stores in the country, I have been to two of them.  The reason why I love it, they sell various signed first editions of books.  I now get signed copies, if they have them that is, of books I have enjoyed and would look nice on my self.  I usually get to one location at least once a year, the prices aren’t cheap but finding a signed copy of a loved book is wonderful.

My buying habits have changed, the format I read has changed but my love for books hasn’t….. But I do miss spending a rainy Saturday perusing the aisle of a bookstore that grabs at my heart, and my wallet.

 

 

The Forgetting By Sharon Cameron

Nadia lives in the city of Canaan, where life is safe and structured, hemmed in by white stone walls and no memory of what came before. But every twelve years the city descends into the bloody chaos of the Forgetting, a day of no remorse, when each person’s memories – of parents, children, love, life, and self – are lost. Unless they have been written.

In Canaan, your book is your truth and your identity, and Nadia knows exactly who hasn’t written the truth. Because Nadia is the only person in Canaan who has never forgotten.

But when Nadia begins to use her memories to solve the mysteries of Canaan, she discovers truths about herself and Gray, the handsome glassblower, that will change her world forever. As the anarchy of the Forgetting approaches, Nadia and Gray must stop an unseen enemy that threatens both their city and their own existence – before the people can forget the truth. And before Gray can forget her.

 

Canaan is a walled city somewhere, who knows where to be honest.  Every 12 years an event called the Forgetting occurs in which everyones memories get wiped out.  In order to protect their memories everyone must write in a book  everyday detailing what happened on any given day to be used to ‘recover’ their lost memories.  Each person keeps their book with them and the truth must be written down.  Each time a book gets filled it’s put into a place called The Archive.   Nadia seems to be one of the very few and very rare people who keep their memories after the Forgetting.  Sounds like an interesting concept doesn’t it?  Well to be honest for me there are glaring plot holes that just made me give up on this book.

Ok, so if everyone loses their memories and they have no idea who they are, well then how are they supposed to know who’s book is who’s?  If you are in a family of 4, mother,father and two daughters…. just how do you know which book is yours to begin with if you can’t remember who you are?  That is the first thing that bothered me.  Also Nadia starts off as the daughter of the planter, but she becomes the daughter of the dyer.  Now what happened is that during the first Forgetting that Nadia remembers her father gives her a false book and said father decides it’s time to get out of the life he is in and takes advantage of the Forgetting to get a new life.  Well if everyone writes down what happened during the day then somewhere someone must have written that Nadia was the daughter of the planter and not a dyer, that is the first thing.  Second is that everyone forgets everything but somehow everyone can remember the job that they do. Now if you forget who you are, who your family are and everything, how would you know how to do your former job? Now you could hypothesise that everyone could go to the archive to retrieve their previous volumes of their ‘memories’ and if that is the case then why the Forgetting?

Now to be honest I didn’t finish the book.  These glaring plot holes just bothered me too much to carry on reading it, that and it was pretty dull as well.  Maybe some of the questions I have are answered later on and then again maybe they aren’t.  either way it wasn’t holding my interest enough to carry on reading.  It’s a shame cause it seemed like an original concept.

DNF

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My picks for May

Hi all, I’m back.  Here are the books I’m looking forward to in May.

 

Fatal Vision

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Play of Death

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cheater’s Regret

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sorry to Disrupt the Peace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Queen and the Cure                                                                                                                                       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So what books are looking forward to reading in May?

 

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The Most Beautiful: My Life With Prince by Mayte Garcia

In The Most Beautiful, a title inspired by the hit song Prince wrote about their legendary love story, Mayte Garcia for the first time shares the deeply personal story of their relationship and offers a singular perspective on the music icon and their world together: from their unconventional meeting backstage at a concert (and the long-distance romance that followed), to their fairy-tale wedding (and their groundbreaking artistic partnership), to the devastating losses that ultimately dissolved their romantic relationship for good. Throughout it all, they shared a bond more intimate than any other in Prince’s life. No one else can tell this story or can provide a deeper, more nuanced portrait of Prince–both the famously private man and the pioneering, beloved artist–than Mayte, his partner during some of the most pivotal personal and professional years of his career. The Most Beautiful is a book that will be returned to for decades, as Prince’s music lives on with generations to come. 

I went into this book with no preconceived views on Mayte or Prince’s lives. I love his music but knew nothing of his private life or first marriage.  Mayte wrote a book filled with passion for her dancing. Her hard work and dedication to being the best that she could be with a hard work ethic that started at a young age. With a background of being an army brat, moving around the world with her parents and sister also gave her a base on the kind of work ethic and lifestyle that Prince had.

Their’s is a love story that was strong, beautiful and romantic. You get a glimps at how romantic Prince was. He was totally wrapped up in her as much as she was with him. It was beautiful and had its share of heartache with the loss of their son.

This book had me in tears at points but had my romantic heart in a flutter at others. Mayte talked about intimate moments without giving everything away and kept certain things private which, to me, showed respect to him and their life. It’s not a tell all book it’s a glimps into the very private life of a notoriously private man. It made me like the book all the more for it.

I discovered more music by Prince through this book and fell more in love with him as an artist. Mayte is strong and loving. She never stopped loving him and even with his death shows that love by writing a book that makes you love them both. Plus that cover….oh that cover! How beautiful it is!

5 stars

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Buy: Amazon

Buy: Amazon UK

Beartown by Fredrik Backman

People say Beartown is finished. A tiny community nestled deep in the forest, it is slowly losing ground to the ever encroaching trees. But down by the lake stands an old ice rink, built generations ago by the working men who founded this town. And in that ice rink is the reason people in Beartown believe tomorrow will be better than today. Their junior ice hockey team is about to compete in the national semi-finals, and they actually have a shot at winning. All the hopes and dreams of this place now rest on the shoulders of a handful of teenage boys.

Being responsible for the hopes of an entire town is a heavy burden, and the semi-final match is the catalyst for a violent act that will leave a young girl traumatized and a town in turmoil. Accusations are made and, like ripples on a pond, they travel through all of Beartown, leaving no resident unaffected.

 

Beartown is a speck of a place. High unemployment, it’s run down, and has seen better days. With the prospect of the junior hockey team of finally making it to the national semi- finals , the fate of the town rests on a handful of boys.

This book is one that reflects a deep love of hockey in a small town. The pride and the way of life that it has become is  just as important as breathing, is well written. Kevin is the local golden boy, has the hopes of winning the semi final rests on his and Benji’s shoulders. Two friends who can read each others thoughts when they are on the ice. They are chalk and cheese but the friendship works well for both boys.

Maya and Ana have the same kind of friendship. Two girls who formed a life long bond when Ana saved Maya when they were children.

The dynamic of both sets of friends gets tested but it’s how well a friendship can survive a life changing event that makes this story.

This book is about is about the bonds of friendship. New ones formed, old ones under strain and some that just don’t survive. I love how that theme was woven in with hockey. The characters are varied and strongly written. While you know who the perpitrator and victim are its how the community reacts that is a big focal point halfway through the book.

I was captivated by this book. You get drawn into both sides of the event and all the while I was cheering for certain characters as well as feeling lukewarm to others only to have my feelings change as the story went on.

I have read all of Mr. Backman’s books and have loved them all for various reasons but find that with each book they become stronger. The varied themes that he writes about is something else I love about him. He can write about the elderly and young alike and gives each character and story a depth that is wonderful to read.

ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

5 stars

Crash

Buy: Amazon

Buy:Amazon UK

My picks for March

Hi all. I have been AWOL for a while and will be for a while longer due to personal issues.  While I won’t be posting much I will try when I can but things are going to be hectic for me until mid April and maybe longer. I will keep up with picks for the month and end of month round ups but beyond that, I can’t promise much right now and hope you can understand.  Drop me a line and let me know which books you are looking forward to in March.

 

Here are the books I’m looking forward to this month.

imageClose Enough to Touch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

imageThe Weight of the World

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

imageStrange the Dreamer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Crash