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Infinite Country by Patricia Engel | Thoughts

   Published : 2021   ||    Format : print   ||    Location : Colombia ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆   What was it about the country that kept everyone hostage to its fantasy? The previous month, on its own soil, an American man went to his job at a plant and gunned down fourteen coworkers, and last spring alone there were four different school shootings. A nation at war with itself, yet people still spoke of it as some kind of paradise.. Thoughts : Infinite Country follows two characters - young Talia, who at the beginning of this book, escapes a girl’s reform school in North Colombia so that she can make her previously booked flight to the US. Before she can do that, she needs to travel many miles to reach her father and get her ticket to the rest of her family. As we follow Talia’s treacherous journey south, we learn about how she ended up in the reform school in the first place and why half her family resides in the US. Infinite Country tells the story of her family through the other protagonist, El

The Sunday Salon -- Mar 14, 2010

The Sunday

Phew! I should say! Since morning, I've been *figuratively* running around getting my chores done (chores pending from last semester?) Sssh! It feels so good to delete item after item from my to-do list. There's still a few more left, but since I'm on the drive to get things done, I'm hopeful! This was part of my "Spring cleaning" plan for the Spring break, so it shouldn't matter that I waited till the last day of the break to actually do those things! I mean, how can you start a break with chores!

No comments on my reading over the last week. I only just re-opened White Oleander by Janet Fitch two days back, and I should say I totally LOVE it. I don't understand why I thought it was hard to read?!? The writing is so eloquent, so beautiful, that I just keep turning the pages. It's not easy to put it down, even for a short while.

Looking ahead, I have a pretty busy week ahead, but I expect things will cool down a bit from the week after. I sure have my fingers crossed! A few-course related stuffs are falling into place. So many others are yet to get anywhere. But any amount of "reprieve" is welcome.

While I was blog-hopping today, I came across this comic about the struggles in Iran, Zahra's Paradise. Having read and loved Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis 1 and 2, I was instantly curious about this webcomic, and played catch-up for some time. It sure reads nice and I thought I'll give it a shout-out at my blog, in case any of you are interested!

From the About pages of Zahra's Paradise, here's what the creators say:

Set in the aftermath of Iran’s fraudulent elections of 2009, Zahra’s Paradise is the fictional story of the search for Mehdi, a young protestor who has disappeared in the Islamic Republic’s gulags. Mehdi has vanished in an extrajudicial twilight zone where habeas corpus is suspended. What stops his memory from being obliterated is not the law. It is the grit and guts of a mother who refuses to surrender her son to fate and the tenacity of a brother—a blogger—who fuses culture and technology to explore and explode absence: the void in which Mehdi has vanished.

So, if you haven't noticed it yet, go ahead and check it out! It's worth it!

Lazy that I am (actually school-busy sounds less guilt-inducing), I have a tiny homework for you wonderful followers! I've been looking for a while for some real quick reads, quick either because they have less than 200 pages or because the story is so gripping/interesting/smooth that it can be termed an all-nighter! Can you suggest me one recent book you read which is either short (under 200 pages) or a really gripping read which I will want to read at one go?

So many discordant thoughts running in this post!

Happy Reading and Happy Blogging!!


Just one? I'll go with Soulless by Gail Carriger and probably immediately regret that I didn't at least mention the two others that popped into my head. :-)

Good luck finishing up the chores!
Ash said…
Shopgirl by Steve Martin is quite short and reads like a movie. I read it in a day. Also, thanks for the tip on the webcomic. I'll be sure to check it out!
Liz said…
Off the top of my head, I cannot come up with a "less than 200 pages" book. I will put my thinking cap on! I think Robert Parker books are pretty fast (and interesting) reads -- I have him on the brain because I managed to snag his newest ("Split Image") at the library on the special first come, first served shelf.

So I'm going to start that, and I'm also trying to take control of my in-box with Michael Linenberger's "Master Your Workday Now" book. Great stuff on dealing with not only e-mail overload (my particular issue), but also e-mail addiction (huge time waster and impediment to actually getting anything done), plus sorting tasks into four urgency zones, so you can figure out what's important and what's really not. Very interesting, and useful, stuff that's helping me a lot.

One note: you have the English version of "Harry Potter" pictured there -- did you know there are slight differences, especially in the first 3 books, between the English and American versions. We have copies of both, and it's fun to discover what got changed when the books were brought over here. (Originally, the books were published first in England, and then "Americanized" for publication here.) Just a little observation. And now, on to my corned beef and cabbage.
susan said…
I highly recommend, Sweet, Hereafter by Angela Johnson. It's a small, lovely book. It is the closing for a series but even without reading the other two titles which I also recommend and are small books. I think you'd enjoy Sweet. My review.

I also recommend M+O 4EVR by Tonya Hegamin. I really enjoyed this book and it makes me sad to have not seen more reviews of it. Mine will be up shortly.
Athira said…
Jennifer, Ash, Liz, Susan, thanks so much for the choices!

Jennifer, thanks again for those extra choices you sent by email. Greatly appreciate it!! :)

Ash, that sounds like a fun book! Off to check it out!

Liz, Michael Linenberger's "Master Your Workday Now" sounds like it should be on my top pile too! God knows I need a lot of help managing my not one, not two, but THREE email boxes! Yes! Plus all those notifications that I have to check out soon as they jump into my inbox. Phew! I think I remember reading somewhere that there are some slang? differences between Harry Potter British and American editions. That's definitely interesting. I need to do more research on that!
Athira said…
Darn, pressed publish accidentally!

Susan, thanks for those two suggestions. They look great! Let me check out your reviews!
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher is probably my most recent absolute rave. I think everyone should read it. Not sure the page count at this time but I know it was quick and I did not want to put it down until the very end.... and not even then.
bermudaonion said…
I thought The Girl She Used to Be by David Cristofano was a page turner. It's not great literature, but it's a lot of fun. It was a quick read for me.
Dana said…
Thanks for linking to the comment - I just looked at the first one on the webpage but I definitely plan to spend some time going through it later!

Books under 200 pages is tough... the first thing that comes to mind from me is Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson, which is 250 pages but a super quick and fun read. I'm sure there are others that I could recommend - I just never can think of the right book when put on the spot! Arg! Hope you find what you're looking for ;)
I am going to suggest Jay Asher's 13 Reasons Why or Julius Lester's Guardian or Rebecca Stead's When You Reach Me. All three on the shorter side and all three REALLY good.
Athira said…
Sheila, that is a book I should definitely consider!! I've heard so many good things of that book!

Kathy, fun is what I need. Thanks for that suggestion!

Dana, I have to check that one. It definitely sounds like fun!!

Helen, all of them look like something I will enjoy. 13 Reasons why is definitely high up on my list!