There is icy sludge surrounding my city, but let’s not let that stop us from getting all cozy and talking about books and other great stuff this week, sound good? Good!
First of all – it was a delightful week in blog-land and Twitter-world meeting a lot of new-to-me Book Bloggers thanks to this lovely post by Shannon at River City Reading. If you’re new to my blog and haven’t already said hi here or on Twitter – please do so! I’d love to follow you back if I haven’t already.
This week I posted a travelogue from visiting a Buddha Park in Laos and shared my thoughts on re-reading. This week’s Words to live by post featured the delightful Laurie Colwin and a cozy quote about soup. If you missed last week’s Weekly Recap, you can catch up here.
I have finished reading The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce, and have scheduled my review for the day after its US publication date (3/4), so take a look for that next week if you’re interested.
I’m onto the third Earthsea book, The Farthest Shore by Ursula K. Le Guin. I’m hoping to finish it soon so that I can post a review of the trilogy before I leave for South America.
Speaking of South America, all the rest of my reading the next 12 days before I leave will be focused on my Galapagos/Inca History/Amazon Rainforest reading list. I’ve just started The Voyage of the Beagle by Charles Darwin. It’s a bit long, so I may have to finish it while I’m in the Galapagos, but I don’t get a lot of reading done while I travel so I’m hoping to get a big chunk of it read in advance. After that, I have the audiobook of The Galapagos: A Natural History by Henry Nicholls, which should add more great information and context.
Graham and I watched CitizenFour this week – the film about Edward Snowden that just won the Academy Award for best documentary. This is an issue that every American should care about. It’s available on HBO Go, and will be released on iTunes soon. If you’re hungry for more scary but important background on this issue, I highly recommend the two part series The United States of Secrets by Frontline, which is available to stream on Netflix.
We are also continuing to watch The West Wing which I’ve now learned is The Greatest Show Of All Time Hands Down. I was at a corner market buying a baguette this week and managed to get into a conversation with another shopper and a store employee about how wonderful it is. How did I go without watching it for this long? I’m loading up my iPad with the next few seasons so we can watch more on our flights down to and around South America.
After a few false starts with audiobooks I could not get into, I used an Audible credit to get The Lost City of Z: A Tale of Deadly Obsession in the Amazon by David Grann – another title from my South American reading list. I got into this one easily, and am soaking up the crazy tales of Amazon explorations.
I really enjoy Gretchen Rubin – her books on happiness and habits, her blog, and her daily happiness quote newsletter. I was excited to learn this week that she has a new podcast, co-hosted with her sister Elizabeth. I subscribed and listened to the first episode this week. The format – her and her sister having a conversation about happiness and habits – works well. They’ll be sharing happiness tips, questions to help you know yourself better, and answering listener questions. The first episode covered topics that will be very familiar to people who read Gretchen’s blog or books, but it was still a good listen and good reminders. I’m looking forward to seeing how the podcast grows as they’re able to expand the topics in future episodes.
Is anyone else a fan of the quirky “Haggis-on-Whey” books published by McSweeney’s? They are faux-science books, wonderfully designed and illustrated, and incredibly funny. I was updating broken images from my very old blog posts that I imported from my Vox days, and I stumbled into the discovery that there’s a new title coming out on March 17, Children and the Tundra. I got very excited, only to read the one review and the comments on the review – now I’m not convinced it will actually come out. What a mystery! I may pre-order it anyway and see what happens.
- While I ponder how I’d like to feature some of my favorite book bloggers to return all the love in the book community this week, I’d like to share an interview with one of my favorite bloggers, Vishy. I’ve been connected to Vishy online for nearly 10 years – he’s a delightful member of the book world – he has a positive spirit and a love for books and reading that is contagious. His interview on Postcards from Asia is a great introduction, and he blogs here.
- One of the new bloggers I discovered this week, the lovely Zandria, posted an incredible list of 50 memoirs written by women who lived abroad. I’ve only read a fraction of these and added so many new titles to my TBR list!
- I also just discovered this fantastic Tumblr by the National Geographic team. It’s called FOUND, and it is a “curated collection of photography from the National Geographic archives. Started in 2013 to honor our 125th anniversary, the blog showcases photographs that reveal cultures and moments from our past. Some of these photos have never been published before, others were in the magazine years ago but since then have rarely been seen by the public. Their beauty has been lost to the outside world.” It’s wonderful and full of images to feed your imagination and curiosity.
That’s all for this week! Next week I’ll be posting my full list of books bought and read in February, and a special travel photo post to celebrate the one year anniversary of my solo trip around the world.
What are you reading / watching / enjoying this week? Spill the beans in the comments!
(PS: I’ve tried a new format where I’m putting in smaller images that are right aligned. It took a bit of work to get them to look ok on the site. If they are showing up wonky on your screen or feed reader, please let me know!)