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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

Looking ahead to May | Notes from my Reading

April... so many things happened and it all whizzed by! Much of what didn't happen is now May's problem along with a ton of new things planned for May.

May reading plans

This month, I have more than my usual number of ARCs to read. I've been slowly reentering the galley world and doing much better at either picking the right books or actually finishing them. The first one is Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir, which I have already started. Ryland Grace wakes up from a deep sleep, not remembering who he is, where he is, or why he is where he is - which is pretty far away and leads to several freak-outs. Eventually, he remembers that he is somehow supposed to save humanity but he just doesn't know all the little details. So far I am loving it as much as I did The Martian

Another book coming out this month is The Plot by Jen Hanff Korelitz. A teacher and former novelist hears about his student's idea for an upcoming book but the student dies before the story could be told. The teacher instead publishes the work and takes all the credit. But then one day, comes an anonymous email - "you are a thief". Boy - that just sounds too good to put away, so I'm hoping to pick it up soon.

I picked up ... with Mrs Tugendhat to the Undiscovered Country by Jim Ring simply due to its quirky title and a premise that always calls to me - a plane goes missing for three months and then comes back. Something about missing planes just intrigues me - it started with Lost all those years ago and re-ignited by Manifest. Even those real life missing planes has me hooked - how can that happen despite being so technologically advanced. I mean, we can fly a plane right? Shouldn't it be easy peasy to track one too? 

Closer to the end of the month but with a June release date, I'll be picking up The Portrait of a Mirror by  A. Natasha Joukovsky. This features two confident couples who know what they want and how to keep up appearances, but then they cross paths and get their lives intricately tangled. I have a suspicion on how their lives are getting tangled and can't tell you I will like it but I love that cover and generally like to read about narcissistic peoples' fall from grace. 

Other than these new releases, I have Rogue Protocol waiting for me at the library. After loving the first two Murderbot books, I have high expectations for the third. Plus, I would also love to read an Elizabeth Acevedo title - I've been eyeing many of her books lately and keep meaning to read them.

April snapshot

At the beginning of April, the husband and I got our second shot of the Pfizer vaccine and started our 2-week countdown to escape from the year-long stay-home situation - well, escape at least in theory if not much in practice. The latter half of April got extremely busy with the house painting. We moved our sleeping quarters and offices around many times during the two weeks that painting was in progress. One fun perk out of this is that I can probably ace a Sherwin Williams blue and gray color palette quiz. 

On the reading front, I started April on a high - I mentioned that I would like to try and read one book a day. This went well during the first half of the month and then life got extremely busy because we started planning for the painting. At that point, most evenings I needed a break from using my brain so I was either not reading anything or mostly reading books that didn't ramble. So I didn't get to any of my planned books (but two) last month.

Overall, I read 16 books (approx. 1.6k pages) - mix of comics, picture books, and full-length novels. Had a lot of favorites this month - Gold Diggers, Binti, They Called Us Enemy, Something Unbelievable, and Gender Queer came out at top. 

What are your plans for May?