WWW Wednesday December 23

It’s Wednesday, so it’s time to take a look at what I’ve read, what I’m reading, and what I’m planning on reading.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

It’s been a week of quarantine here with my oldest daughter testing positive for the virus. So far, no one else has displayed symptoms, and luckily my immune-compromised husband seems to have avoided getting Covid, so for that we’re truly thankful. Since I’m not working 40 hours a week, I’ve had time to catch up on some reading/listening.

What are you currently reading?

Fast Girls: A Novel of the 1936 Women’s Olympic Team (Abebooks) (Amazon) is a 2020 release that I was interested in, and then there was a Kindle deal for it so Boom! Into my library it went.

“This inspiring story is based on the real lives of three little-known trailblazing women Olympians.  Perfect for readers who love untold stories of amazing women, such as The Only Woman in the Room, Hidden Figures, and The Lost Girls of Paris.

These three athletes will join with others to defy society’s expectations of what women can achieve. As tensions bring the United States and Europe closer and closer to the brink of war, Betty, Louise, and Helen must fight for the chance to compete as the fastest women in the world amidst the pomp and pageantry of the Nazi-sponsored 1936 Olympics in Berlin.”

I’m also reading Bridgerton Collection Volume 1: The First Three Books in the Bridgerton Series (Amazon) in anticipation of the Netflix series, which premieres on Christmas Day. I’m probably only going to read the first volume, which is what the series is based on so I can compare. This is not normally my sort of book to read, but I couldn’t resist the Kindle deal when I found out about the TV adaptation.

The Duke and I
When Daphne Bridgerton and Simon Basset, Duke of Hastings, agree to a fake courtship, they think they’ve found the perfect solution to their problems. Romantically associated with one of London’s most desirable catches, Daphne’s prospects among the ton will soar. For avowed bachelor Simon, an attachment to Daphne will deter would-be brides and their ambitious mamas. Their plan works like a charm—at first. But amid the glittering, gossipy, cut-throat world of London’s elite, there is only one certainty: love ignores every rule. . . 

What did you recently finish reading?

Books I finished with reviews posted:

Me & Patsy Kickin’ Up Dust: My Friendship with Patsy Cline by Loretta Lynn, Patsy Lynn Russell; foreward by Dolly Parton-Review to be found here.

The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary Click here for my review.

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King-Review here. I still can’t get over the fact that King lived in De Pere, which is adjacent to Green Bay, and a real-life case that he heard about as a kid ended up becoming a short story and then later the movie Stand By Me (Amazon)

Furious Love: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, and the Marriage of the Century by Sam Kashner, Nancy Schoenberger (Click here for review) I absolutely loved the spectacle of Cleopatra (Amazon) (AbeBooks) , and thought Whose Afraid of Virginia Woolf (Amazon) was a cinematic masterpiece, so this book was the perfect subject matter for me.

Alexander Hamilton: The Making of America (Amazon) (AbeBooks) is a middle grade book I highly recommend for those kids as obsessed with Hamilton the musical as my kids were a few years ago. Review to be found here.

Other books I finished and will be writing about soon include Spellbreaker (Amazon) (AbeBooks), which I won from Goodreads a while back and Royal by Danielle Steel (AbeBooks) (Amazon). It’s been years since I read (or in this case, listened to) a Danielle Steel book, but the Audible deal last week was too good to resist, along with a plotline that loosely follows the Windsors, how could I resist?

I also finally finished the audiobook of No Time Like the Future by Michael J. Fox (Amazon) (AbeBooks). Look for my review in the coming weeks.

Finally, A Nancy Drew Christmas (Abebooks) (Amazon) review comes on Friday, of course!

What do you think you’ll read next?

Several weeks ago I won and just received an ARC of Yellow Wife (Amazon) from Simon and Schuster and Goodreads. The novel is released January 12th, so that’s my target date to finish.

Born on a plantation in Charles City, Virginia, Pheby Delores Brown has lived a relatively sheltered life. Shielded by her mother’s position as the estate’s medicine woman and cherished by the Master’s sister, she is set apart from the others on the plantation, belonging to neither world.

She’d been promised freedom on her eighteenth birthday, but instead of the idyllic life she imagined with her true love, Essex Henry, Pheby is forced to leave the only home she has ever known. She unexpectedly finds herself thrust into the bowels of slavery at the infamous Devil’s Half Acre, a jail in Richmond, Virginia, where the enslaved are broken, tortured, and sold every day. There, Pheby is exposed not just to her Jailer’s cruelty but also to his contradictions. To survive, Pheby will have to outwit him, and she soon faces the ultimate sacrifice.

I also have an ARC from NetGalley to read called The Faberge Secret (Amazon). It’s release date is January 5, so I’d better get started!

St Petersburg, 1903. Prince Dimitri Markhov counts himself lucky to be a close friend of Tsar Nicholas II and Tsarina Alexandra. Cocooned by the glittering wealth of the Imperial court, the talented architect lives a life of luxury and comfort, by the side of his beautiful but spiteful wife, Princess Lara. But when Dimitri is confronted by the death and destruction wrought by a pogrom, he is taken aback. What did these people do to deserve such brutality? The tsar tells him the Jews themselves were to blame, but Dimitri can’t forget what he’s seen.

Educated and passionate, Doctor Katya Golitsyn is determined to help end Russian oppression. When she meets Dimitri at a royal ball, she immediately recognizes a kindred spirit, and an unlikely affair begins between them. As their relationship develops, Katya exposes Dimitri to the horrors of the Tsar’s regime and the persecution of the Jewish people, and he grows determined to make a stand . . . whatever the cost.

I’m also going to be reading and listening to That Time of Year: A Minnesota Life by Garrison Keillor (Amazon) starting Christmas Day because my husband bought me an autographed book for my present. He had no idea what to get me, and coincidentally asked me the day I got an email from Keillor, offering the autographed copies for a limited time through his website. So I told my husband how cool it would be to have an autographed book from one of my favorite authors and forwarded him the email; he listened. 🙂

That Time of Year, Garrison Keillor looks back on his life and recounts how a Brethren boy with writerly ambitions grew up in a small town on the Mississippi in the 1950s and, seeing three good friends die young, turned to comedy and radio. Through a series of unreasonable lucky breaks, he founded A Prairie Home Companion and put himself in line for a good life, including mistakes, regrets, and a few medical adventures. PHC lasted forty-two years, 1,557 shows, and enjoyed the freedom to do as it pleased for three or four million listeners every Saturday at 5 p.m. Central. He got to sing with Emmylou Harris and Renée Fleming and once sang two songs to the U.S. Supreme Court. He played a private eye and a cowboy, gave the news from his hometown, Lake Wobegon, and met Somali cabdrivers who’d learned English from listening to the show. He wrote bestselling novels, won a Grammy and a National Humanities Medal, and made a movie with Robert Altman with an alarming amount of improvisation.
He says, “I was unemployable and managed to invent work for myself that I loved all my life, and on top of that I married well. That’s the secret, work and love. And I chose the right ancestors, impoverished Scots and Yorkshire farmers, good workers. I’m heading for eighty, and I still get up to write before dawn every day.”

What are you reading? Do you have any recommendations? Drop your list in the comments. Thanks for stopping by!

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