Sunday, November 5, 2017

The Sunday Salon: Hello, November


November has arrived. Early sunsets, Thanksgiving, family gatherings, birthdays, our anniversary. Increased activity in the kitchen, quiet evenings with a book, holiday preparations begin, and Nonfiction November...the highlight of my blogging year. Here we go!


Finished this week//

by Amor Towles, narrated by Nicholas Guy Smith

Elegant, beautifully written, but slow... at times, painfully so. Review coming this week.



My Cousin Rachel by Daphne DuMaurier

More about obsession than love, this was a perfect book for Halloween week reading. DuMaurier's delightfully Gothic story, filled with ambiguity and tension, kept me up late turning the pages.




Current reading//


I was able to get both the audio and ebook version from my library via hoopla. It's interesting so far and, as an added bonus, short.



Likely to read next//


by Jessica Bruder

From the beet fields of North Dakota to the wilderness campgrounds of California to an Amazon warehouse in Texas, people who once might have kicked back to enjoy their sunset years are hard at work. Underwater on mortgages or finding that Social Security comes up short, they’re hitting the road in astonishing numbers, forming a new community of nomads: RV and van-dwelling migrant laborers, or “workampers.”


On the blog//

Nonfiction November, Week #1: My Year in Nonfiction
The Classics Club: My Second List


At home//

We're in the process of replacing four windows. Contractors were around most of last week and I'm hoping they finish up on Monday. We cleaned the gutters Saturday, but still have several more outdoor fall clean-up chores ahead. Fingers crossed the weather cooperates!


How was your week? What have you been reading?


This post will link to It's Monday, What Are You Reading? is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date.
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50 comments:

  1. Oh my...contractors...we have had far too many of them this year....we are now waiting for the dishwasher installer...Wednesday...and the refrigerator on the 10th...I just finished Little Fires Everywhere...and loved it. I am in the midst of the Sally Hepworth book...it’s so good, too! I think I am up for a fantasy next!

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    1. Patty - I hope things go smoothy with your latest round of installers. The windows should be finished tomorrow and it's been relatively trouble-free... which is nice for a change!

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  2. Oh, I am glad not to have all those homeowner woes now. Ten years ago, when I sold my house, I thought about buying another...but instead, I rented this condo. I'm loving having maintenance staff take care of issues.

    Nomadland looks like an interesting book. Thanks for sharing, and for visiting my blog.

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    1. Laurel-Rain Snow - The joys of home ownership are wearing thin these days.. it seems to be a never ending cycle of repairs. At least I got in a little extra reading time last week while they were working :)

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  3. No downsides for me at all with A Gentleman in Moscow. Loved it! Currently reading a very famous author I've never read before .... you'll hear about it soon. Good luck with your repairs. I have a small project coming up of building in shelves and then painting my foyer closet--this one being done by someone else, not moi. I love to check off small completed projects. Hope to get this one done before Thanksgiving.

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    1. JudyMac - Ooh, I love reading famous authors for the first time... can't wait to see who it is! We wanted the windows to be done before Thanksgiving, too. That's when our house really fills up. Looks like they will be done tomorrow - yay! A Gentleman in Moscow was such a beautiful book. Still working on a review for Thursday or Friday.

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  4. I don't have as many projects as most people but I did finally get my little bedroom's peeling ceiling painted, so it won't be emnbarassing when people stay over. :) As for reading, I just finished Northanger Abbey, just in time to realize that I got the order wrong. It should have been Emma, then N.A., then Persuasion. Oh well, Jane Austen won't mind.

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    1. Audrey - No, I'm sure Jane wouldn't mind. She would be happy to learn we're still reading her after all these years... and maybe a little surprised, too.

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  5. What a lovely photo at the top of your post! We need to have our gutters cleaned too but they're too high for us to do them.

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    1. Kathy - We'll keep cleaning our own gutters for as long as possible. It's actually become a fall chore we enjoy... although my muscles are a little sore after so many trips up and down the ladder ;-)

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  6. That photo looks so calming. I miss living at the lake. I have Reading People on my hold list at the library. I'm #4. I may read Nomadland since for years I've wanted to travel/live in an RV.

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    1. Vicki - I just finished Reading People today... such an interesting book. Will probably start Nomadland tonight.

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  7. It has been unseasonably warm here on Long Island. It does not yet feel like November!

    You read, or plan to read some good looking books. Nomadland looks particularly interesting. I run in a place where RVs park. It seems that some folks are living in them full time.

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    1. Brian Joseph - Looks like we are in for some colder weather this weekend. Just saw on the news that snow is a possibility Friday, and morning lows Saturday will be in the teens. We seriously need to get to Florida! ;-)

      I'll probably start Nomadland tonight. Think it may provide insights into the RV lifestyle.

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  8. I need to replace some windows, but I'm putting it off still. I need to read some Daphne Du Maurier sometime too, I've putting her off for too long- not intentionally, just the overwhelmingness of my TBR.

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    1. Louise - I know what you mean about overwhelming tbr pressure...so many great books out there! Daphne DuMaurier is definitely worth a try. Rebecca was wonderful too, but I read it too long ago to offer much of a comparison.

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  9. I loved A Gentleman in Moscow!

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    1. Amy - The ending was just perfect!!! SO well done.

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  10. No real fall projects here. We'll wait to clean up the yard and leaves in the spring since it will probably rain from now until then. :) Lucky for us, we live in a forest and don't really have to rake the leaves.

    I've decided to re-read High Tide in Tuscon by Barbara Kingsolver. I've made up a list of the books I read in 1996 and made another list of those from that year that I want to read again. Since HTiT fits for Nonfiction November, I decided to quit saying "someday I'll read this again," and actually picked it up and read several essays. Thanks for the nudge!

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    1. Les - Glad you decided to join in the Nonfiction November fun. I've read several of Kingsolver's books, but not High Tide in Tucson. Have been giving more thought to rereading lately and will try to make it more of a priority in 2018.

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  11. I so agree with you about A Gentleman in Moscow. In so many ways it was a wonderful book, but so slow. I listened to Nomadland last month and really enjoyed it. I'm reviewing it on Thursday. Have a great week.

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    1. Susie - I've been thinking about whether I enjoyed A Gentleman in Moscow enough to 'forgive' the slowness. For me it was worth it, but that might not be the case for many readers - my daughter among them. I'll be starting Nomadland tonight and will look for review on Thursday.

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  12. Nomadland sounds intriguing but a little frightening too. Hopefully that isn't the way my retirement will go. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

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    1. Kathy - Ha! I had the same thought about Nomadland... we'll see what it's all about.

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  13. Hi JoAnn: beautiful sunset there! I'm a bit worried to hear how slow the Towles novel is. It sits on the shelf while I read from a pile of library books. Nomadland looks good and I'm on the wait list for that. I just finished Ethan Frome which captures icy cold temps perfectly. We are in Banff presently and it's COLD! Enjoy your week.

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    1. Susan - I bought Towles book the day it was released and it sat here for over a year. It is definitely slow... but just so beautiful and elegant, too. Most readers have a pretty good idea of their tolerance for books like that, and should be aware that this one may push the limits for some. But the ending was absolutely wonderful!

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  14. I just love that cover of the Daphne du Maurier book.

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    1. Mystica - I love it, too... and made sure to request a copy of that particular edition from the library!

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  15. You're in full fall cleaning and prep mode it appears. I love the photos you have here, I miss the change of seasons so much. We really need to price out having windows replaced. I fear we will have to do it a few at a time, so expensive. Nomadland looking interesting. My parents traveled and lived in their motor home for 5 years after my dad retired, and they loved it. My sister and her husband are doing something similar but not as care free, they are spending half the year as workampers and are enjoying it. Financially they can't afford to travel as much and so this is a good retirement option for them. I personally couldn't do it...give me a house!

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    1. Anita - We are... and time is running out! Snow and morning temperatures in the teens expected Friday into Saturday... brrrr. I do love the change of season, but am more than ready to head south now! Nomadland looks like it will be a fascinating read. I'm in my late 50s and have had several friends retire over the past few years. Several have bought RVs. Our friends from Savannah retired at 56, sold their home, put the furniture in storage, and embarked on a 5 year "See the USA" tour. When they're done, they plan to buy another home. The trip will help them decide where that will be!

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  16. I pitched Nomadland to my other book club and they picked it up so I shall be reading it for February.

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    1. Ti - I told my book club about it and they're curious, but want my opinion after I've finished. Hope to start later tonight.

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  17. My Cousin Rachel looks interesting. I like Daphne DuMaurier's books. Enjoy your books!


    My It's Monday! What Are You Reading? post.

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    1. Majanka Verstraete - This is the second DuMaurier novel I've read. Now I want to read them all!

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  18. I like books like Reading People--maybe I'll add it to my own list. My Cousin Rachel is definitely all about obsession--did you see the movie? I reread it with the notion that I would then see the movie, but it ended up being darker than I remembered and I didn't feel like watching a movie that dark right now. I think Nomadland sounds interesting--there are times when that life appeals to me, and then I come to my senses!

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    1. JaneGS - I'm planning to borrow the movie from the library tomorrow. The website lists it as being on the shelf, but you know how that goes! There's definitely something appealing about the RV lifestyle, but I doubt I'm cut out for that kind of life... maybe a vacation would be more realistic!

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  19. I can't wait to hear what you think of Nomadland - I want to read that one! Hope the weather holds out so you can get the upgrades done!

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    1. Iliana - There's a possibility for snow at the end of the week, but I'm pretty sure they'll have everything sealed up and completed by then... definitely a relief! Can't wait to start Nomadland.

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  20. Oh, gosh...we have someone coming out to give us an estimate for new windows on Wednesday! Yikes! I hope things are getting finished up at your house, JoAnn! I've heard great things about Nomadland; I'll be interested to hear what you think.

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    1. Tara - The windows are finished, hooray! Hope your project goes smoothly, too. I haven't made a lot of progress on Nomadland yet this week, but the beginning is promising.

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    1. Pussreboots - I've only just started Nomadland, but am enjoying it so far.

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  22. Reading People looks interesting; I like that kind of book. And your gothic / seasonal reading appeals to me too. I didn't read quite as much as usual this week, but I did enjoy a new Canadian novel which takes place after the Russian Revolution, with some science and a love story too, Jocelyn Parr's Uncertain Weights & Measures. Hope you're having another good week!

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    1. Buried in Print - I just read your pairing post and you sold me on both the novel and October! Finished Reading People on Monday... a very interesting look at personality.

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  23. I always mean to do nonfiction November but end up not making it happen. I do love seeing what everyone else reads though. I've had A Gentleman in Moscow on my TBR since it came out so that's too bad it has some painfully slow parts. I'll be looking for your review on that and your thoughts on Reading People. Have a great week!

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    1. Katherine - Hoping to get the review of A Gentleman in Moscow up on Friday. Finished Reading People and liked that one, too... personality and personality types is such an interesting subject.

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  24. Beautiful picture- great way to start a post. :) I love all the things you listed- all are reasons why this is probably my favorite part of the year, in spite of the encroaching cold!

    Nomadland has me really curious.

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    1. Greg - Now that we head to Florida for most of the winter, the encroaching cold isn't as much of an issue. Glad you're back and posting!

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  25. I'm currently reading Reading People, too -- and really enjoying it. I feel like I "know" Anne Bogel from her podcast, and it's a pleasure to read her words on the page.

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    1. Unruly Reader - I really enjoyed Reading People... interesting stuff! Can't believe I wasn't listening to Anne Bogel's podcasts, but she is on my list now.

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