Sunday, September 25, 2016

The Sunday Salon: More Reading, Less Blogging


Without really meaning to, I've settled into a weekly blogging routine over the past couple of weeks... reading more, but blogging less. Instead, I've been posting quick updates/photos on litsy, instagram, and twitter. That worked well for the Germinal  readalong - lots of 'contact', but not a lot of blogging. It also seems to suit my life at the moment. We'll see what happens post-readalong...

Finished this week//


Germinal by Emile Zola
I loved it! This is one of the most intense novels I've ever read... consuming, actually. Hard to believe a novel about coal miners could have such an effect. Germinal is truly Zola's masterpiece. I'll write a proper readalong wrap up/review post soon.



Current reading//


Belgravia by Julian Fellowes
This novel is proving to be the perfect follow-up to Germinal. Exactly what you would expect from the man who gave us Downton Abbey, I'm enjoying every page. As an added bonus, I borrowed the audiobook from the library (because it's narrated by Juliet Stevenson and she's the best) to make it a read/listen combination.


Up next//


Amsterdam by Ian McEwan
I'm reading this with Athira and had planned to start right after Germinal, but needed the palate-cleansing of Belgravia first. I'll start within the next few days.



Watching//


I finished Doctor Thorne and thoroughly enjoyed it. It's based on a favorite Trollope novel, so naturally I was nervous about the liberties Fellowes took with plot... especially in making Miss Dunstable an American. I decided that made her more of a 'type' and easier for viewers unfamiliar with the novel to understand. Have you seen it?

I've moved on to Indian Summers, but only watched one episode and am not hooked yet.

In the kitchen//


The novelty of the spiralizer has not worn off. I made these lemon garlic zucchini noodles on Tuesday and added some halved grape tomatoes - delicious. But the hit of the week was Ginger Roasted Salmon and Sweet Potato Noodles with Miso-Maple Dressing from inspiralized.com (pictured above).  I had to buy a couple ingredients, but will definitely use them again. We grilled the salmon instead of roasting, and I cooked the sweet potato noodles a little too long... they started to break up.

Today my relatives will help us take the docks out (we're early this year!) and are staying for dinner. Since temps were in the 30s this morning, I feel justified in taking action on my pumpkin pie craving. I'll make one this afternoon!


New this week//


Are you familiar with Litsy? It's a new social media app for readers... like a cross between instagram and  goodreads... and the android version launched this week. The bookish community there is really something special. Check it out! Look for me, lakesidemusing.

That's it for me today. How was your week? What are you reading?


This post will link to It's Monday, What Are You Reading?  hosted at Book Date.

52 comments:

  1. I like my spiralizer, too...it's just too messy for me! Now I need to check out Belgravia.
    Pumpkin pie! Yum!

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    1. Patty - I was expecting the spiralizer to be much messier than it is. Wonder if it's the model... I got an OXO good grips model ands love it! Can't wait to eat that pumpkin pie after dinner :)

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  2. I thought about getting a spiralizer, but didn't think I really needed it since the house we bought in a nearby town has a way smaller kitchen than I have now.

    I clicked the link for Indian Summers and it looks good. I've added it to my series manager. I hope to catch up on season one soon.

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    1. Vicki - I'm lucky to have a lot of storage space in my kitchen. It's a different story in FL, so I won't buy one there. Can't wait to hear what you think of Indian Summers.

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  3. A friend of mine was raving about her spiralizer last week. It sounds like I need to look into one.

    I can't believe it was in the 30s! It's still hot here.

    I love Litsy!

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    1. Kathy - I chose the OXO Good Grips model with 3 blades after reading all the reviews... very happy with it so far! Litsy is great fun :)

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  4. I am constantly torn between reading time and blogging time. It seems the ultimate problem that book Bloggers face.

    I am glad that you enjoyed Doctor Thorne. I must catch it myself.

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    1. Brian Joseph - You are so right, the blogging vs reading dilemma seems universal among bloggers. Not sure I'll stick with once a week, but it's good for the moment. My oldest daughter is watching Doctor Thorne now and really likes it, even though she has never read Trollope.

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  5. I've been on Litsy for a while but haven't been using it a lot. I think the Android release was just what I needed to get back on. It's been fun connecting again!

    I'm about 50% through Germinal but have to set it aside for a book club read. Sigh. Hub is out of town for a few nights, though, so I should be able to read without much guilt after the girls are down. Hopefully I can get back to it soon! I need to know what's going to happen with Catherine and Etiene and the rest (though I'm fearful!).

    30 degrees. Sigh. Seems too early!

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    1. Trish - The Android release has breathed some new life into Litsy.. even more fun now! Hope you can get back to Germinal soon, though I have to admit was it emotionally exhausting. I still ended up loving it. It does seem early for 30s here, but then I remind myself that snow is fair game after mid-October. Yikes!!

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  6. I've seen several mentions of Lipsy today...so now I'm definitely curious.

    I enjoyed Amsterdam...the other books look tempting.

    Love the look of that salmon with asparagus...and zucchini noodles? I love zucchini, which is so versatile.

    Thanks for sharing...and for visiting my blog. And when my fairy godmother appears, I'll send her your way. lol.

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    1. Laurel-Rain Snow - Those are actually sweet potato noodles with the salmon. I made the zucchini noodles earlier in the week.... May have gone a little overboard with the spiralizer! ;-)

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  7. It sounds like you've still been active with social media, just not as much on your blog. I'm okay with doing that personally; the most important thing to me is the reading and sharing.

    I've seen the Belgravia book around, but---clueless me!---I thought people were saying it's good if you like Downton Abbey because it's written in that style, not that it was written by the same person! Thank you.

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    1. Deb - Yes, still reading and sharing about books. I suppose the world of books on the internet is evolving...I still have fond memories of Yahoo book groups!

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  8. I've downloaded litsy, but I don't think I'll get into it. I hardly need more technological distractions, when I can't get to the blogging or commenting I once did! Remember when blogging was basically all there was? It seemed simpler, somehow, and now I find out people are enjoying the quick facility of Instagram, Twitter, and Litsy to meet their needs. Then only problem is that now instead of one platform, there are so many to keep up with!

    Glad you loved Germinal. I watched from the sideline, but couldn't get involved with my Man Booker Shadow jury taking precedence. Still, Zola rarely disappointing. I was crazy about Therese Racquin.

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    1. Bellezza - I suppose the big Litsy draw for me is that it's easier then blogging, and more immediate. But I think there is a place for both :)

      Germinal was incredible and I always enjoy the readalong aspect. Therese Raquin is now my second favorite Zola novel. Unfortunately, I haven't read many of the Mann Booker nominees this year. SO many choices... what's a reader to do?!

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  9. I've only just been inspired to start blogging again after a four-month break, but I've been doing lots of reading -- I just finished Belgravia yesterday! I liked the story but I felt like Fellowes did more telling than showing; still, it was a fun read. I can definitely see the influences of writing for movies and TV, this would be a great mini-series.

    And your salmon and sweet potatoes look delicious!

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    1. Karen K. - Funny you should mention the telling instead of showing aspect... I'm enjoying the story so much, but have been thinking that same thing the entire time! I'm hoping for a miniseries, too!

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  10. The salmon recipe sounds delicious! I don't have a spiralizer, but I think I'm going to try just the salmon portion. Love ginger and love salmon :) I also just joined Litsy and am enjoying it a lot more than I thought I would!

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    1. Sarah - The sprializer is a lot of fun, but can see it becoming a very seasonal kitchen gadget for me... the noodles seem light and summery to me. Part of Litsy's appeal, at least for me, is that it's quicker and easier than blogging.

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  11. That's me -- these days I feel less like blogging and reviewing and more like reading. LITSY is fun and easy. We do love salmon but not a fan of ginger.

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    1. Diane - We all seem to be thinking like that lately. Litsy seem to be the right app at the right time!

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  12. I really like Juliet Stevenson in Truly, Madly, Deeply, Bend it Like Beckham, and an episode of Inspector Lewis. She's so good. I'm amazed at all the online stuff you do. I have to work hard to read other blogs, and write once in a while.

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    1. Nan - Juliet Stevenson has become one of my favorite audiobook narrators over the years... she is so versatile and does many character voices! I love how the internet has added a social aspect to reading, though at times it's been to the detriment of my actual reading. I may have read more books per year before I started blogging, but I certainly enjoy them more now that I have people to talk with about them :)

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  13. Looks like you got some great reading going on. I'm really curious about the Julian Fellows book. Unfortunately I still haven't joined Litsy but it's on my to do list :) Have a great week ahead!

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    1. Iliana - Belgravia is an excellent story! Pure entertainment, and I can already imagine a miniseries :)

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  14. I have Belgravia waiting for me (I got the audiobook with my last Audible credit...) but first I'm listening to the audio of Laurie Colwin's book, Home Cooking. Would you ever think listening to someone read recipes to you could be so enjoyable? (Actually, I think you probably could!) It's a lovely memoir...and perfect comfort reading. :) (P.S. I think your blogging approach is perfect.)

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    1. Audrey - I borrowed the Belgravia audiobook from the library and it is wonderful! Juliet Stevenson makes it even more enjoyable. I'm starting to think I can no longer just read or just listen ;-) I enjoyed Lori Colwin's Home Cooking in print very much, but am certain the right narrator could make the recipes enjoyable listening. I might have to go over to audible and listen to a sample. Thinking of you this week... hope all is well.

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  15. 30's, wow. Yup it's cooling off, time for the docks to come out. When we had our place up north it was always bitersweet when it was time to take everything out and close up shop- we didn't go up in the winter. Glad you're having some family visit- and enjoy the pumpkin pie! Yum.

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    1. Greg - The 30s won't last, but it is a little wake up call. Summer is so wonderful that it's easy to lull ourselves into the feeling that winter will never come. The pumpkin pie was yummy... sent all the leftovers home with my parents though ;)

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  16. That salmon looks delicious!! And wow, in the 30s already? Eek. I would make pumpkin pie too, totally justifiable. :)

    Doctor Thorne looks really good, I will have to check it out. I have been curious about Indian Summer as well. :)

    And finally, Litsy. How cool! I haven't heard of it, but now I will definitely look it up.

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    1. Erin - Hard to believe we can get that chilly in September... summer is now officially a memory :( Litsy is a lot of fun, and much easier than blogging, but it's adding to my tbr list too quickly!

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  17. OK, JoAnn, 30's? Wow. We are supposed to get a 'cold front' today that will take our nighttime temps down into the high 60's and we think that's great. LOL

    The salmon looks wonderful. Your blogging seems perfect. I feel like I'm still figuring out how much is 'enough' in that regard. We're going to be out of town for a couple of weeks beginning this weekend and so my blog will be on another break. Litsy is way too fun for me. Suspect that I will cut back on that at some point, but I'm having fun with it for now. It's just so quick to post something there. And because I'm not on Twitter or Instagram and my Facebook involvement is just for personal stuff and minimal at best, Litsy is just right. As Goldilocks says.

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    1. Kay - The 30s was a little drastic, even for us, but summer is definitely just a memory! My sisters' birthday (they're twins) is Oct 18 and I know it's snowed on them more than a couple of times... winter comes early up here!

      It seems like blogging is evolving for many of us. When we started that's all there was, but now so many other bookish arenas are vying for our attention. Litsy does seem to fill a need though :)

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  18. Belgravia looks like a novel I would enjoy - may have to look for that one!

    Here's my reading list for this week: http://justasecondblog.blogspot.com/2016/09/what-im-reading-september-26-2016.html

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    1. Kym - Belgravia is the perfect escape from the heaviness of Germinal... so much fun!

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  19. I read Amsterdam ages ago. I love McEwan.

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    1. Ti - The more I read of McEwan, the more I like him!

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  20. I couldn't get away with my spiral isn't so gave it away. Good idea but I failed in the execution. I was using litsy but not much. I may try again but as I don't use goodreads much either I don't hold out much hope for succeeding. Have a good week.

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    1. Emma - I'm having fun with the spiralizer, but the novelty is sure to wear off soon. Not sure how much more zucchini I can feed my poor husband ;-)

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  21. Belgravia sounds like just the kind of book I want right now - an entertaining escape :) And wow...those are some chilly temperatures you guys are getting already - yikes!

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    1. Jane - If you're looking for an entertaining escape, Belgravia is just the book for you!

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  22. You've sold me on the Zola book completely. It's been a long time since I read a Zola book (like college) but I trust your judgment. Look forward to your review. Ps. I have read Amsterdam and liked it a lot. McEwan rules.

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    1. Susan -I'm started working on my Zola post tonight... hard to know where to begin. What a book!

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  23. I'm glad you picked another book now because I did the same thing too. My book was too far from me (two rooms away) so I started reading an ebook in the meantime lol. It's a quick one though so I'll be ready for Amsterdam within the next few days.

    Oh and Litsy is too much fun!

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    1. Athira - I finally finished Belgravia yesterday and will start Amsterdam tonight.. or tomorrow if I'm too tired;-)

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  24. I'd listen just because Juliet Stevenson is narrating! She is awesome. Happy Listening.

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    1. Nise' - Juliet Stevenson is the best! Any book is better if she is the narrator.

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  25. I have Belgravia on my shelf to read. I'm really looking forward to it. Hopefully it will fill the void now Downton Abbey is finished.
    Enjoy your week!

    Amanda @ Mrs B's Book Reviews

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    1. Amanda - Belgravia was pure entertainment! I could practically see the miniseries as i was watching ;-)

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  26. Having a routine that works for you regarding blogging and the community is great - I keep hearing about Litsy but have yet to check it out myself.

    The food you shared looks delicious!

    I hope you have a great week - happy reading!

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    1. Jade- Hope you have a great week, too. Litsy seems to be exploding this week with all the new Android users... so much fun:)

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