Stacy's Books

books, movies, and boy

Illustrating the Gender Gap – Loganberry Books

I love Loganberry Books in Cleveland Heights. They are eclectic, cozy, huge and they have a cat!  For Women’s History Month they created a unique display that showed the disparity between the number of women and men authors in fiction.

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On their fiction walls they turned the books written by men backwards so that only those written by women are showing.  As a former bookseller and librarian I appreciate all the work that went into this.  Check out the  2 minute video of the walkthrough.  So cool. Here are a few of my pics.

I was excited to see the bookstore tackle something like this.  This was only the two long fiction walls and the poetry section (didn’t get a picture) and didn’t include genres or any of the rest of the store. I loved it.  The story got picked up by a few online sites and I was so disappointed by the comment sections. We have so much more to accomplish as women, not the least of which is respect.  I was surprised by the number of women bashing the women who came up with this idea.  We should be supporting each other.  I honestly get so discouraged by reading almost all online comment sections.

I also loved this idea that you could contribute to local charities and a few national ones that are fighting hard battles right now.

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I went yesterday and spread my $5 worth around 🙂  They also had  this display in the middle of the store.

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This store is a local treasure and the haters only made me spend more money when I stopped by yesterday 🙂

This display is up through today.

March 14, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 10 Comments

Postcarding my wall, it gets political

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Lots of cards this week!

The train postcard is from Jessica in Great Britain and had a gorgeous train stamp with Union Jack that you can only get at the National Railway Museum in York. Very cool.

The van postcard is from Matthias in Germany who loves to goes to the movies.  The Lord of the Rings trilogy is his favorite. Can’t disagree with him there.

The koala postcard comes from Pamela in Australia who sys she will send a train postcard later if she finds one 🙂

The cute kitten came from Doris in Germany and this is what she wrote, “This postcard says ‘The biggest power in the world is the Pianissimo!’ Hopefully some presidents in the world will realize that!  Well, at least this postcard is still allowed to come into your country without being asked for passwords…  Hope for peaceful times for all countries, best wishes.”  Doris and I continued to exchange a few political private messages online. She encouraged me to stand up, protest any way I can, because the rest of the world is watching.  Powerful stuff coming from a stranger.

The one with the woman in a field is from Taiwan. Jewel told me about the special teas thy make there, oolong being one of my favorites.

The pretty mountain view with water came from Joey in Western Norway.  A favorite book of hers is I Heard the Owl Call My Name by Margaret Craven.


I added the van to my window that started out as a miscellaneous collection of cards that I liked.  It turned out the right side is now the graphic side since I had so many.

I’m not putting up every card I receive. Of those six from last week I only added the van and the train and cat went to Gage’s collection.  The rest of the cards are in the box on top of the trunk.

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February 24, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Postcarding

I’ve written about my love affair with Postcrossing before (you can do a search if you want to see my old posts) but now I may have gone a step too far.  In October we painted four rooms that had previously been covered with wallpaper.  All rooms look great, BUT our front room remained bare because I had not decided what to do with it. The color is okay, but I decided to get rid of the blinds and curtains so it’s been plain Jane ever since.  I came up with an idea for Gage to display his train postcards in his bedroom and made the mistake of checking out Pinterest.  Well, I decided to use my favorite postcards to accent our front room.  It’s been fun.

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This is the corner where I’ve grouped food and books and movies.  I’ll reveal other spots later.  So, now that I’m obsessed with getting more postcards I’m writing as many as I can (17) in hopes of getting more creative on my walls 🙂  I received three this week, only one for me but it will be added to this display.

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Both cats wanted to be involved.  That’s big boy Razzi up top and little Sammi looking right at you.

The beautiful bookshelves came from Annika in Stockholm, Sweden,  She takes the pictures herself and has them printed as postcards.  Love it!

The white postcard with the train on it came from an 4th grade class in Taiwan. Each of the kids take turns writing postcards. Ours came from Danny and he had excellent handwriting.

The other train postcard came from Alan, a retired teacher in France.

Come back next week to see another wall and postcards I’ve been lucky enough to receive.

February 17, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Film Friday

I have been a little out of the loop movie-wise but I can always count on the Oscars to help steer me toward wonderful films.  Let’s take a look at the nominees in the big categories.

Best Picture

Arrival (loved it)

Fences

Hacksaw Ridge

Hell or High Water

Hidden Figures

La La Land (liked it, but had some problem spots)

Lion

Manchester by the Sea (tore me apart but what a great movie)

Moonlight

Opinion – the three I’ve seen are all worthy.

Best Actress

Isabelle Huppert (Elle)

Ruth Negga (Loving)

Natalie Portman (Jackie)

Emma Stone ( La La Land) (she really carried the movie)

Meryl Streep (Florence Foster Jenkins)

Opinion – I’ve only seen one performance and she was fantastic

Best Actor

Casey Affleck (Manchester by the Sea) (incredible performance)

Andrew Garfield (Hacksaw Ridge)

Ryan Gosling (La La Land) (good lead)

Viggo Mortensen (Captain Fantastic) (he kills it every time and this was no different)

Denzel Washington (Fences)

Opinion – Personally I’d choose Casey or Viggo but I know La La is getting all the love)

 

So, tell me what you think about the ones that you’ve seen and maybe I can get to them before the Oscars!

 

February 10, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 10 Comments

Love Between the Covers

Jason and I are watching a documentary a day for our January 30 day challenge.  We are on schedule with the watching but two reviews behind. I blame it on the snow day Gage had yesterday.  Over the weekend we watched one that I thought my romance reading friends might like.

Love Between the Covers, 2016, is on Netflix.

For three years, we follow the lives of five published romance authors and one unpublished newbie as they build their businesses, find and lose loved ones, cope with a tsunami of change in publishing, and earn a living doing what they love—while empowering others to do the same.

They had a few of my favorites – Jennifer Crusie, Kristan Higgins, Eloisa James, Nora Roberts and many others.  Have any of you watched it?  What did you think?

You can read our thoughts here and scroll through the documentaries we’ve watched (and reviewed) here.

 

January 11, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

I’m turning 9 today!

Who knew that when I published my first post here that I would still be around nine years later talking about books, movies, trips? Not me that’s for sure. I think that years 2-4 were the most successful ones. I was active in the book blogging community and I had time to visit my blogger friends EVERY DAY.  Times have changed and bloggers have come and gone, but there are many of you who have been here since the first few years and I appreciate your friendship so much.  Thanks for sticking around and being a part of my on-line, and often real, life.

I plan on another great blogging year with the admission that the weekly quizzes are gone for the forseeable future. I think it’s fun, but it takes up too much time. I’m not sure how I’ll replace them but I’ve got some ideas 🙂

Here are my favorite pics from each year of blogging.  Tell me if you have a favorite. I may use it on my front page this month.

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2010

 

 

 

 

 

 

2011

 

 

 

 

 

 

2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

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IMG_1379[1]2014

IMG_1752[1]2015

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January 7, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 14 Comments

2017 First Book and One Word

Each year Sheila at Book Journey hosts First Book and First Word.  I’ve done the First Book for a few years and here’s this year’s selection…

img_1956Here be Dragons:A Parent’s Guide to Redicovering Purpose, Adventure, and the Unfathomable Joy of the Journey by Annmarie Kelly Harbaugh and Ken Harbaugh.  Annmarie contacted me in October to read the new book she had written with her husband.  I saw that she was local and decided to take it.  I started it in November, but since I was writing a book (NaNoWriMo) I was wasn’t devoting much time to reading.  I decided to table it until the new year and here we are. I will be picking it up on page 53, after she’s had her first baby and decides she needs to go back to work.  The book is good and the Harbaugh’s sound like the couple everyone wants to be friends with (hey, we’re local so who knows? ;)).

One Word is something Sheila does every year and I’ve always been intrigued by those who could decide on just one word.  In the last week or so a word came to me and I’m going with it.  Those who know me or follow me on Facebook or Twitter know that the election in November saddened me for so many reasons.  I think we are in for a tough, long four years, BUT in a way it also opened the door for me to become passionate again.  I plan on using Facebook and Twitter to highlight my word every day this year.

I want to live an INSPIRED life.  I want to be inspired by God, my country, my community, my family and friends, and myself.  I want to weed out the noise and negativity and look around that the good that is happening all around me.  When I see an injustice or a problem I don’t just want to complain about it. I want to find the people who are doing something about it and become one of them.  I want to look outside at the beautiful earth we live on and be inspired to be a steward. I want to be inspired by those who know God. I want to find those changing the world and support them.  At first it seems that inspired can be a passive word, but if you are truly INSPIRED you will be changed and have the power to inspire those around you.

What’s your first book of the year? And did you choose a word this year?  Why not be inspired along with me?

 

 

January 1, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | 19 Comments

2016 Book Favorites and Stats

Books

I read 68 books this year.  That’s 8 more than last year.

53 fiction, 15 non-fiction. That non-fiction number needs to go up next year.

Of those 53 fiction 28  were by authors new to me.

45 female authors, 23 male authors

24 of these books were audio.

I continued with 8 series that I had already started (Cormoran Strike, Jack Reacher, Kinsey Millhone, Harry Potter, Lincoln Rhyme, Mrs. Pollifax, Myron Bolitar, Lucas Davenport)

And started 2 new series/trilogies that I will continue (Kick Lanigan, Charlie Cates)

I read 3 books for the Classics Club. I have 3 years to finish 39 more. (Ethan Frome, The Bluest Eye, Up From Slavery)

Oldest book read – Up From Slavery by Booker T Washington, 1900

Shortest book – The Croquet Player by HG Wells, 82 pages

Longest book – 11/22/63 by Stephen King, 849 pages

Most read author – Harlen Coben, Sue Grafton, JK Rowling each with 2 books a piece.

My 5 favorite books of the year

Title: Ethan Frome (Wisehouse Classics Edition - With an Introduction by Edith Wharton), Author: Edith WhartonEthan Frome by Edith Wharton. A classic that stands the test of time.

Title: After You, Author: Jojo MoyesAfter You by Jojo Moyes.  A worthy sequel to Me Before You, a favorite read from last year.

Title: Home (Myron Bolitar Series #11), Author: Harlan CobenHome by Harlan Coben.  These are always going to be favorites because he makes us wait so long between Myron and Win books!

Title: I Must Say: My Life As a Humble Comedy Legend, Author: Martin ShortI Must Say by Martin Short. I can only speak for the audio that Short narrated himself. I laughed and I cried.

Title: 11/22/63, Author: Stephen King11/22/63 by Stephen King. What a feat. I didn’t care for the very end, but this book, WOW!  JFK would’ve liked it, I bet.

If you’ve done a year end list please put a link in the comments so I don’t miss it!

December 29, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | 7 Comments

End of the Year Survey

My 2016 By the Numbers post will be going up this week, but I had fun with this survey, the first year I’ve taken the time.

From Jamie at The Perpetual Page-Turner

1. Best Book You Read In 2016?

Ethan Frome – Edith Wharton & After You – Jojo Moyes

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

Bleachers – John Grisham. Grisham is usually reliable, if not great at least a fun read, but this one did nothing for me.  And it was about football, which I love!

 3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?  

Ethan Frome – Edith Wharton. I love when classics surprise me like this one did.

I Am not a Serial Killer – Dan Wells.  I was expecting to be wowed by this child serial killer wanna be, but the book jumped the shark in the middle and never quite recovered for me.

 4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

The Sparrow – Mary Doria Russell.  I pushed my book group to read this and it was a little out there for them.  It was a reread for me and though I still loved it, it wasn’t as much as the first time almost 20 years ago.

 5. Best series you started in 2016? Best Sequel of 2016? Best Series Ender of 2016?

After You – Jojo Moyes.  Loved revisiting Louisa and finding out how she fared after Will.

 6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2016?

Sara Gruen, Hester Young, Susan Mallery

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

Dear Almost: A poem – Matthew Thorburn.  I’m no poetry buff but I am glad that I read this poem written by a father after his wife’s miscarriage.

 8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

Home &  Fool Me Once – both by Harlan Coben. He’s my go to guy for unputdownable books and he didn’t disappoint with his two this year.

 9. Book You Read In 2016 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

None of them. Although I will probably dip into I Dare Me from time to time for inspiration.  This reporter tried something new every day for a year!

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2016?

Title: Best Staged Plans, Author: Claire CookBest Staged Plans – Cook. My favorite flower.

11. Most memorable character of 2016?

Louisa Clark – After You.  She’s unforgettable.

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2016?

Ethan Frome– Edith Wharton. I’ve read a few other books by Wharton, but it was this one that had the most impact.

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2016?

I Dare Me: How I Rebooted and Recharged My Life By Doing Something New Everyday – Lu Ann Cahn.  The book wasn’t perfect, but the inspiration behind it was contagious.

 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2016 to finally read? 

C is For Corpse and D is for Deadbeat – Sue Grafton. I’m late to this series but plan on catching up eventually 🙂

 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2016?

I could choose lots of passages from Living Buddha, Living Christ – Thich Nhat Hanh but I think this is so relevant in today’s political climate.

Professor Hans Kung has said, “Until there is peace between religions, there can be no peace in the world.”  People kill and are killed because they cling too tightly to their own beliefs and ideologies.  When we believe that ours is the only faith that contains the truth, violence and suffering will surely be the result”…”Do not think the knowledge you presently possess in changeless, absolute truth.  Avoid being narrow-minded and bound to present views. Learn and practice nonattachment from views in order to be open to receive others’ viewpoints.”  To me, this is the most essential practice of peace.

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2016?

82 pages –The Croquet Player– HG Wells

849 pages-11/22/63 – Stephen King

 17. Book That Shocked You The Most

Fool Me Once – Harlan Coben.  It’s been a while since once of his twists shocked me so I was happily surprised to be fooled 🙂

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar)

 

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Myron & Win – Home. These two best friends from the series are the best.

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2016 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

After You and Ethan Frome were both from authors I know and love.

21. Best Book You Read In 2016 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

At the Water’s Edge – Sara Gruen, Orphan Number Eight – Kim van Alkemade, Reading Lolita in Tehran – Azar Nafisi. I read all of these for my book club.  My favorite was At Water’s Edge but they were all good.

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2016?

After You’s Sam.

23. Best 2016 debut you read?

Gates of Evangeline – Hester Young. It’s the first of a trilogy – yay!

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

The Croquet Player – HG Wells.  He paints a perfect picture every time.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – no explanation needed, I think.

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – John Tiffany, JK Rowling, Jack Thorne.  Loved being a muggle looking in into Harry Potter’s World once again.

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2016?

A Housefly in Autumn – Scott Nagele. I loved this book written by a former B&N boss.  It was really good and I’m not ashamed to say that I shed a tear once or twice.

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

A Housefly in Autumn – Scott Nagele

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

No book, but we saw the movie Manchester by the Sea last week and it did crush my soul.

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2016?

How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less– Sarah Glidden.  This graphic memoir brought a complicated subject to life in a fresh way.

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

 Orphan Number 8 – Kim van Alkemade. Loved the book, but this fiction based on a real orphanage was heartbreaking.

December 27, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | 18 Comments

Home by Harlan Coben

Title: Home (Myron Bolitar Series #11), Author: Harlan CobenHome. Finished 9-26-16, rating 4.75/5, mystery, 387 pages, pub. 2016

Myron Bolitar books  (1- Deal Breaker, 2- Drop Shop, 3- Fade Away, 4- Back Spin, 5- One False Move, 6- The Final Detail, 7- Darkest Fear, 8- Promise Me, 9-Long Lost, 10-Live Wire)

A decade ago, kidnappers grabbed two boys from wealthy families and demanded ransom, then went silent. No trace of the boys ever surfaced. For ten years their families have been left with nothing but painful memories and a quiet desperation for the day that has finally, miraculously arrived: Myron Bolitar and his friend Win believe they have located one of the boys, now a teenager. Where has he been for ten years, and what does he know about the day, more than half a life ago, when he was taken? And most critically: What can he tell Myron and Win about the fate of his missing friend? Drawing on his singular talent, Harlan Coben delivers an explosive and deeply moving thriller about friendship, family, and the meaning of home.     from Goodreads

I was so happy to pick up Harlan Coben’s new Myron Bolitar book.  I love many of his standalones, but it’s Myron and company who have my loyalty and since the last book of the series came out in 2011 I was craving me some Myron and Win.  This book does not disappoint.

Win, Myron’s best friend since college, asks for help in finding his cousin’s son who has been missing for ten years.  They start on the London sex trade streets and end up in an uber wealthy New Jersey neighborhood where the families have au pairs, not nannies. Or maybe they start in New Jersey and end in London, either way it’s a wild ride.

Coben always nails popular culture. Young kids know way too much about technology. They need to get outside and spend some time in the sun!  Of course, I say this as I sit here at my desk with my iPad and iPhone tempting me from my computer.  Moms are guilty too.

I think most everyone would like the series, but you’d have to start somewhere earlier. It wouldn’t have to be the first book, this one is #11, but maybe by 4 or 5 you should be on board.

November 21, 2016 Posted by | 5 Star Books, Uncategorized | 7 Comments