13 July 2015

Stacked-Up Book Thoughts: The Midsummer Check-In

Stacked-Up Book Thoughts are my random notes about books I've read or listened to, movies and TV I've watched, books I'm looking forward to, and events I hope to get to.

A personal note: Last weekend was our annual three-day camping trip with close friends. This was the 39th year the group has met in the northeast corner of Pennsylvania. I've been going since the 11th year and Mr. BFR has missed only two.

It's a great weekend of hiking, talking, drinking, eating, resting, reading, and relaxing. I didn't get much reading done this year, but I had a wonderful time nonetheless.

What to look for on the blog: I have two super giveaways this week and the second edition of my celebration of Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson series.

The Fly Trap by Fredrik Sjoberg, Mr. Mac & Me by Esther Freud, Murder on the Champ de Mars by Cara Black

Audiobooks: Thanks to the daily rain, I haven't been taking my walks, which means I haven't had my usual amount of audiobook time, but I'm still listening. The Fly Trap by Fredrik Sjoberg is a charming book that's part memoir and part essays/internal dialogue by a Swedish entomologist. Robert Fass did an excellent job as narrator. Mr. Mac & Me by Esther Freud is novel about the effects of World War I on a Suffolk community told through the eyes of a thirteen-year-old. The Mr. Mac of the title is architect Charles Mackintosh, who indeed spent a year in England painting wildflowers. The actor John Banks was the narrator. I'm currently listening to Cara Black's Murder on the Champ de Mars. This mystery involves a complex case (set in Paris) in which a murder seems to have links to protagonist Aimée Léduc's late-father. The audiobook is read by Carine Montebertrand.

Backyard Witch by Christine Heppermann and Ron Koertge, Uprooted by Naomi Novik, Urban Bestiary by Lyanda Lynn Haupt

Print reading: My reading list is about three miles long -- isn't yours? I've just finished reading the Backyard Witch by Christine Heppermann and Ron Koertge. This is a cute middle grade book with terrific black and white drawings, information about birdwatching, and a good message about friendship. I finally remembered to buy Uprooted by Naomi Novik, which arrived over the weekend and I can't wait to get reading. I love the cover and the story is supposed to be a fairy tale retelling, one of my favorite genres. I brought a copy of Lyanda Lynn Haupt's Urban Bestiary with me over the weekend (eBook version), but I never got around to opening it up. I'm looking forward to reading about the wildlife that lives all around us, even our own backyards.

Poldark, Ray Donovan, True Detective

Watching: We don't watch a lot of television in the summer, but what we do watch is all on Sunday night. I've become an expert in managing the recordings and searching on-demand. We've been getting into Poldark on PBS. I love the acting, the costumes, and the scenery. We're a few episodes behind, but I think this is going to be tale of revenge. This season's Ray Donovan on SHO started last night. Although I'm totally hooked on the actors, there's a lot about the show that makes me cringe. We missed last night's season's opener but will catch up this week. The new season of True Detective on HBO is very complicated. I'm not as in love with it as I was last year, but the cast this year is terrific. I can't wait to see where the case is going and how the main characters are going to work out their messed-up personal lives.

What are you listening to or reading? What are you watching?


rhapsodyinbooks 7/13/15, 7:43 AM  

Uprooted looks interesting; I love retellings as well. I'm not watching True Detective except over Jim's shoulder so to speak, as he watches it. He feels the same way as you do so far.

Molly Totoro 7/13/15, 7:55 AM  

How fabulous that the same group of friends still cares enough to meet for the annual camping trip! That is a testament of true friendship.

So many good titles here, but I am particularly interested in picking up Backyard Witch and Urban Bestiary. Thanks for the recommendations :)

bermudaonion 7/13/15, 9:03 AM  

Wow, your camping adventure sounds like it's not to be missed!

Katherine P 7/13/15, 10:52 AM  

The camping sounds like such fun! I'm intrigued by your books - especially the Carla Black. It sounds like my kind of mystery! I'm having mixed feelings about True Detective as well. I'm definitely curious to see how it all unravels though.

Farin 7/13/15, 1:19 PM  

Interesting, I'd started watching Ray Donovan over the July 4th weekend and had to stop. Like you said, the performances are excellent, but the characters make me cringe to the point where it was uncomfortable to watch. Alas. Enjoy the camping trip!

(Diane) bookchickdi 7/13/15, 2:03 PM  

The camping trip does sound like a great time. And I was just about to give up on True Detective until the end of episode 4- it was a stunner.

Carrie 7/13/15, 3:31 PM  

I'm so glad you had a great time camping! I am not a camper, but my husband is taking the kids this weekend. I will join them for a day at the lake on Saturday, but the rest of the time will be some me-time. :)

I haven't watched any of the new season of True Detective yet, but my husband has, and he's not loving it as much as season one, either. I'm not surprised - those are some big shoes to fill.

Nise' 7/13/15, 10:04 PM  

How cool that this group has been getting together for 39 years! I've got Poldark recorded and will probably watch when the weather is cool.

Daryl 7/15/15, 10:51 AM  

camping .. not my thing

almost all the shows we watch air on Sunday evening as well, i am happy DrecTv lets us record 5 shows at once ...

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