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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

A library haul after months | Notes from my Reading

Despite so much going on over here between work, house projects, yard work, and just daily living challenges in this pandemic era, I've been able to squeeze in time to read as well, which I'm thankful for, because the news has been abysmal these past few weeks for various reasons and I'm continually worrying about where humanity is headed, even more so than I did before.

A library haul after months...

My biggest highlight in books this past week was that the library opened for holds pickup. I'd been checking their website every week to find if next week was going to be the week it opened. So when the notice finally came through last week, I was beyond thrilled. I was also very unsure what books to request from the library since I had gotten very used to reading online. Still, I had a few requested when they called me to schedule a one-hour window for pickup. I did request a ton of books after that though, so I expect a bigger bag this week. 

Some of these are books to read with my daughter. Although we've read a few of the Elephant & Piggie books, I'm excited about reading it as a series, to get some continuity with the characters. I've been looking for more series to read with her - so added Duck & Goose Go To The Beach and Jasper & Ollie to the library bag. 

I know I'll be starting The Pearl That Broke Its Shell soon (for a book club read) but hopefully, I'll get to Are You My Mother? and Lost Children Archive. I'm actually not sure yet if I'll read the latter. If it involves lost or abandoned or dead kids, it will likely go back to the library unread. That's too much of a trigger for me right now. Maybe after several years, when my kids start looking more like adults... 

Readability of nonfiction books...

I don't say this often enough, but I love reading most nonfiction. I love how intriguing fact can be, and how nonfiction come in all varieties. I can also get bored by a nonfiction book very fast. If the author says the same thing on repeat, chapter after chapter, then I find it hard to continue with it. So in that sense, I have mixed luck with it. I may start reading one, go on for pages, and then quickly abandon when I feel I've gotten as much as possible from it. (Obviously, this is true only for some types of nonfiction - like science or self improvement or psychology.) This week, I've been in the middle of two books that, thankfully, are still holding my interest. 

I had actually started Subtle Art couple of months back and put it aside (because of other books I was trying to complete and then it was returned back to the library and I was back in the waiting list). I'm three chapters from the finish and I'm still loving it. Which is surprising because other than Jen Sincero's You are a Badass, I have not actually read a self-improvement book from cover to cover. (I have read summaries of tons of them and read some chapters of a few of them.) I guess what I like is that these two books take the facts you already know and understand, spin them around, and present to you from a perspective you didn't consider.

The other one that I started this week is Daniel Pink's When. I'm listening to this one on audio and so far it has my attention. But I'm not too far in to know if it will stick. It's only five hours on audio so I'm hopeful. This book discusses all about timing and how certain things are best done at certain times. I'm curious to see what recommendations the author has.

Ending with a fantasy / mythology fiction...

Sometime last week, I came across an available copy of Circe in my library's Overdrive catalog. This book typically has long wait lines so I wonder if they added a few extra copies recently. Since it's been a book I've wanted to read since its release, I snagged the copy and promptly started reading it.

In reality, while I knew this book was fantasy and featured Greek gods, it didn't sink in until I started reading the book that it is mythology as well. That's logical, of course, in hindsight. This subgenre is one that I have least exposure to, but so far Circe has been an intriguing read, even if the ways of the gods feel strange to read about.

What books are keeping you engaged today?