Wondrous Words #406

WWWEvery week I join Kathy at Bermuda Onion’s Weblog to post about new words we’ve discovered. It’s called Wondrous Words Wednesday.


I was reading an article about how literary critics have analyzed the words used by Jane Austen to see why she is so popular after more than 20 years when I found two new words.

1. welter: Emma does not know her own heart, but the welter of intensifiers creates a sense of insisting too much, that not all is as it seems.

Welter can be both a noun and a verb. In this sentence it’s a noun so welter means a large number of items in no order; a confused mass


2. indubitable: The change was indubitable.

Indubitable is adjective meaning impossible to doubt; unquestionable. 


That’s all for me this week. Don’t forget to visit Kathy for more Wondrous Words Wednesday.

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My Week In Review

Thanks for stopping by. I’m having a very happy summer and I hope you are too.

First, I want to tell you about my favorite book of the week. It didn’t start out that way. In fact, I thought it was dull and quite slow at the beginning. I considered stopping, but it’s an up-coming book club selection so I felt obligated to keep going. Its a good thing I did. By the half-way point I was enjoying it a bit more and by the end, I loved it.

News Of The World by Paulette Jiles is the story of Captain Jefferson Kidd, a seventy-one-year-old man who travels the small towns of northern Texas in 1870 reading national newspapers. The Captain’s customers are the people of these frontier towns who are willing to pay 10 cents to hear about what’s going on in the rest of the world. Its an interesing life and the Captain is well-known and respected.

The Captain’s life changes when the U.S, Army pays him $50 in gold to return a ten-year-old girl to her family in San Antonio. The army rescued her from a Kiowa tribe that had captured her four years earlier. Reluctantly, the Captain agrees. The girl does not remember anything except her Kiowan family. She speaks no English and tries often to run away back to her tribe. The Captain is very wise and quite patient as he attempts to earn his $50 and in doing so, her trust. This was a very satisfying story with a conclusion that was inevitable although not predictable. I hightly recomend it.

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I read the graphic-novel version of the award-winning book The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. Its set in Afghanistan and is the story of an unlikely friendship between two boys. When I first read the book several years ago I was deeply touched by the story. Now, with the graphic version, I could “reread” this enjoyable book again, but in a different way. Its a story that should be shared by all ages. This graphic-novel is bringing the book to a new group of readers. (My local librarian is very happy with it’s circulation numbers among teen readers.) The illustrators did a wonderful job of interpreting the original story. Even if you aren’t normally a graphics’ fan, check this one out.

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I finally finished reading Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J. Ryan Stradal. It’s the kind of book that, on one hand is a great story, but on the other hand made me very hungry. Each chapter is devoted to one particular dish along with another segment of the story of Eva Thorvald. It’s a touching story of how Eva was raised alone by her father who had an absolute love of food. Eva absorbed that and when she grew up she became a celebrity chef reflecting the foods of Minnesota and the Midwest. What made her unique was a secret supper club that could pop up anywhere. Everyone wanted to be in on these amazing feasts. All of this made an iteresting story with yummy-food and a good sense of humor.

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Today I want to tell you about a place where we have spent many happy hours this summer with our four-year-old grandson. It’s called The Children’s Museum. It’s located in the next town over from us, Santa Rosa. There is both an indoor area and an outdoor area.

As you can see in the picture above, the indoor area has two floors of interesting and fun, hands-on activities. There is a train set in addition to the trains going around overhead, a general store, a restaurant where you can cook a meal, a puppet theater and a gian bubble room. I’m only telling about the things our little guy likes. There’s a lot more.

The outdoor area has a full-sized helicopter and a full-sized tractor and garden to match. That’s fun, but our budding engineer/plumber loves the water area. There are giant  sinks and pvc-pipes so he can devise his own water scupture. It’s amazing to watch. The little river next door even has fish (in glass tubes) you can catch. There’s a lot more to see and do but you get the idea. I love the concept of a museaum just for children, don’t you? My sister tells me there is one near where she lives in Anaheim and I’m sure other parts of the country have them as well. It’s a great place to be if you are four or actually for an aging Nana.

That’s it for me this week. I hope you have a great week ahead. Happy Reading.

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Book Beginning: News Of The World

I’m joining Rose City Reader as she encourages fellow bloggers to share the beginnings of a book we are reading.

I’m reading a historical fiction book about a man who drives among the small towns of northern Texas. He reads the news to people who do not have major newspapers and who appreciate being able to keep up with what’s going on. Here is the beginning of the book:

Captain Kidd laid out the Boston Morning Journal on the lectern and began to read from the article on the Fifteenth Amendment. He had been born in 1798 and the third war of his lifetime had ended five years ago and he hoped never to see another but now the news of the world aged him more than time itself.

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

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Wondrous Words # 405

WWWEvery week I join Kathy at Bermuda Onion’s Weblog to post about new words we’ve discovered. It’s called Wondrous Words Wednesday.


I found one new-to-me word this week. I actually heard it on a TV news show:

pernicious:  “This is so pernicious.”

Pernicious (pərˈniSHəs) is an adjective meaning having a harmful effect, especially in a gradual or subtle way


That’s all for me this week. Don’t forget to visit Kathy for more Wondrous Words Wednesday.

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A Look At My Week

I’ve had an “easy” reading week. Nothing major to think about with these books. They’re just enjoyable stories. I read two books by the same author, Nora Roberts. They’re the kind of stories I love:  big families, some romance, and the family business. Also — each book contained a mystery at the heart of the story. Let me tell you a bit about them:

Come Sundown is author Nora Roberts’ latest book (May 30). The story is set in western Montana on an enormous ranch and resort owned and operated by the Longbow family. Daughter Bodine Longbow oersees the operation of the business although there are lots of people hired to help out in addition to the rest of the family. One of the newest staff members is Callen Skinner who has come home after years working on Hollywood movies managing the horses and other animals. Bodine had a crush on Cullen when she was in high school and she doesn’t seem to have lost her interest. There are some additional aspects to this story: Someone in the area has killed two women and there is a parallel story about a young woman who was captured and held against her will for many years.

The running of the ranch an resort, a couple of romances, and the mystery of the women make this a very compelling story. As is usual from Nora Roberts, the reader also gets to know the people involved as well.

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The other Nora Roberts book I read is The Villa (2002). In this story we have two families, the Giambellis and the MacMillans. They have merged their two Napa Valley wineries to create a masterful business. This is a three-generational business, run by the grandparents who married after the deaths of their spouses. As the story opens, the grandparents are about to announce a change in the management of the business. They are paving the way for their future retirement and preparing their two grandchildren to take over. The two grandchildren are already involved in the business: Tyler MacMillan is an accomplished vintner and Sophia Giambelli handles the marketing and public relations. Neither one really wants to do more than they are currently doing, but the grandparents present a compelling case. As Ty and Sophia work closely together to run the business and accomplish the merger, their personal lives begin to merge. Things are smooth however as someone is trying to sabotage the business. It’s not petty sabotage, as the murder of two people will show.

The Villa is my favorite of these two novels. It was just a bit more exciting than Come Sundown, especially the mystery part. I did not see the “whodunit” nor anticipate the ending. All very satisfying.

What We Did For Fun:

My husband, Jay, and I attended a great fund-raiser for the library this week. The organizers secured a theater and a big-screen version of Raiders Of The Lost Ark. Do you remember this 1981 Steven Spielberg clasic?

We choose seats down front in the center of the third row. It was amazing to be right there in the middle of all that action and super close to handsome Harrison Ford! (No, it didn’t hurt my neck.)

I don’t know the exact figures of how much money was raised, but I do know the theater was sold out, which at $25 per person was a good amount. They also sold a ton of raffle tickets for all sorts of donated gift baskets. Also donated was the bag of popcorn and bags of chocolates (the really good stuff) every attendee received. There were lots of happy people that night, including Jay and me. What kind of fund-raisers does your library have?

That’s it for me this week. I hope your week ahead is filled with fun. Happy Reading.

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Book Beginnings: Come Sundown by Nora Roberts

I’m joining Rose City Reader as she encourages fellow bloggers to share the beginnings of a book we are reading.

I’m an old Nora Roberts fan. Summertime and a Nora Roberts romance just go together. Here’s the beginning of her newest novel:


Dawn bloomed, pink as a rose, tinting the snow-drenched mountains with delicate color. Elk bugled as they swam through mists on their morning pilrimage, and the rooster crowed his insistent alarm.

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

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Wondrous Words #404

WWWEvery week word-lovers post new words they’ve discovered while reading. It’s called Wondrous Words Wednesday and was created by Kathy at Bermuda Onion’s Weblog.

In the New York Times Opinion newsletter I found this interesting word that I couldn’t quite understand:

back-channeling: “There’s lots of back-channeling, backbiting, and lots of leaking,” John Dickerson, the host of Face the Nation, said on the Slate Political Gabfest.

There are several variations on the meaning of back-channeling:

  • a real-time online conversation using networked computers that takes place alongside live spoken remarks.
  • Track II diplomacy, an unofficial channel of communication between states or other political entities
  • an organizational practice in business that involves bypassing recognized or official chains of command in order to create vulnerability[clarification needed] at the level(s) skipped

Okay, now I get it. I hope you do too.


That’s all for me this week. Don’t forget to visit Kathy for more Wondrous Words Wednesday.

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My Week In Review

Hi everyone. Thanks for stopping by to check on my week. I’ve had a fun week. My reading has been highlighted this week by Stories — with a capital S. Every thing I read contained

Did you know that there are Grammy Awards given for the Best Spoken Word Album? Yes, they’ve been doing it for several decades. The winner for 2017 is In Such Good Company. Its a memoir of sorts by the comedian, Carol Burnett. Ms. Burnett wrote the book and then is the narrator. I swear, my whole face smiled just hearing the opening paragraph. Carol Burnett is the ultimate entertainer whether she’s acting on TV or writing and reading her memoir. The book is chock full of info about her time on her long-running weekly variety show. From the publisher, here is a little bit of what is in the book:

• how the show almost didn’t air due to the misgivings of certain CBS vice presidents;
• how she discovered and hired Harvey Korman, Vicki Lawrence, Lyle Waggoner, and Tim Conway;
• anecdotes about guest stars and her close freindships with many of them, including Lucille Ball, Roddy Mcdowell, Jim Nabors, Bernadette Peters, Betty Grable, Steve Lawrence, Eydie Gorme, Gloria Swanson, Rita Hayworth, and Betty White.

It was such a treat to listen to this book. I can see why she won the Grammy. It felt as if she were telling just me all about the people on her show and the various characters they all created. There are so many great stories in here and I strongly recommend you grab this one.

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The Woman In Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware is a mystery about a young journalist, Lo Blacklock, who works for a travel magazine. She’s given the assignment of a trip on the maiden voyage of a sleek cabin cruiser. Its a luxury liner and the trip is a real perk. However, on her first night she meets a woman in the cabin next door – Cabin 10. In the middle of the night she hears what she thinks is someone going overboard. When Lo reports this to the person in charge of security, he doesn’t believe her, nor does anyone else. Everyone tells her that Cabin 10 has been empty the whole trip. Is Lo crazy or is something else going on? This was a very tense story with a good mystery that was not known until the very end, which is how good mysteries should be.

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There’s nothing like a good legal thriller to round out my summer reading list. Best would be one by one of my favorite authors, John Grisham. Since he has a new book out, I grabbed it without reading the blurb. I assumed this would be a legal thriller, but I was wrong. This is not a bad thing. Camino Island is great storytelling. Its actually about the theft of rare manuscripts of F. Scott Fitzgerald and what happened after. The story I enjoyed the most was the tale of an independent book seller on Camino Island. Everyone seems to think the stolen manuscripts are coming his way. As usual, a very satisfying story.


What I Watched:

After I finished reading/listening to the Carol Burnett audiobook I checked out some of her shows on dvd. The library had a bunch of them. Those old variety shows are amazing for the quality of the singers and dancers. For example, one of the highlights was the Jackson Five. The sketches were also excellent — probably the real genius of the show. I loved the Tim Conway segments, but Carol Burnett is the heart of every show.

Well, I must say I laughed so much this week that my mouth hurts. It’s okay, though. Laughter is very therapeutic. I hope you have something to make you smile and laugh this week.

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Book Beginnings: The Woman In Cabin 10

I’m joining Rose City Reader as she encourages fellow bloggers to share the beginnings of a book we are reading.

I found The Woman In Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware on the New-Arrivals shelf at the library. I was hooked by the end of the first chapter.


In my dream, the girl was drifting, far below the crashing waves and the cries of the gulls in the cold, sunless depths of the North Sea. Her laughing eyes were white and bloated with salt water; her pale skin was wrinkled; her clothes ripped by jagged rocks and disintegrating into rags.

Most of the story takes place aboard a luxurious cabin cruiser heading toward Norway. A young journalist sees a woman in the cabin next door, but then the woman is never seen agin. Tfhee’s no proof she went overboard. Where did she go? This is a great mystery.

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