Tag Archives: Denise Kiernan

Book Club Reflection: The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernen

13 Apr

My book club always seems to meet around my birthday. It feels like an extra present from the universe when it happens. We met the day before my birthday this year to talk about The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan. I think we had a really good discussion.

We used the LitLovers questions to guide our discussion.I love when a non-fiction book reads like fiction and I think we found that in this novel. One member thought she needed an editor to cut out some of the passages that seemed repetitive (mud

I love when a non-fiction book reads like fiction and I think we found that in this novel. One member thought she needed an editor to cut out some of the passages that seemed repetitive (mud mud mud).

This was a topic none of us knew much about before reading it. We knew about the testing in New Mexico but had no idea that there were people in Tennessee refining the uranium. I guess we see what the history books want us to remember!

The first question from LitLovers asked us, “Denise Kiernan explains in an author’s note, “The information in this book is compartmentalized, as was much of life and work during the Manhattan Project.” (page 18) How does the book manage to recreate the workers’ experience of months-long ignorance, and the shock of finding out what they were working on?” Kiernan formatted the book into ‘story’ and ‘science’ sections. She used separate chapters to tell us about what was happening in Europe or with the US government but didn’t mix these things with the sections that told the stories of the women. It was interesting to read about those in Europe and what they were doing to advance science, but the women of Oak Ridge wouldn’t have known that so these stories didn’t overlap. One could read only the story sections and learn about life in Oak Ridge or just the science sections and hear only of war strategies and upper military planning. They were well separated.

Many of us felt for those who had been kicked out of their homes for the factories. There are many stories in our own Detroit of this happening, specifically when residents of the Poletown district were relocated to build a General Motors assembly plant. A member of our group had eminent domain evoked on her property; all of the wooded area behind her home was reclaimed by the city for a draining project. She was compensated only $1!

We saw that a lot of the girls seemed to suffer from a mild depression brought on by all the secrets they were forced to keep. We wondered how common in US history and society a situation like this is where so many people are forced to live in secrecy. There’s each nation’s version of the Secret Service and every job has its own minor secrets, but these seem minor in comparison. When I worked in retail, our big secrets were where the Black Friday TVs were going to be placed in the store, not an atomic bomb!

Question six from Lit Lovers asked, “Why were some women so successful at making Oak Ridge home while others were not, were depressed, looked forward to leaving?” This reminded a lot of us of a person’s Freshman year of college. When people go away to school, most either love or hate the experience. Living alone in a dorm, having the freedom to come and go as you please, is very intriguing to some people. Others, however, need the structure they had when they lived at home. They want to go back to somewhere that’s safe. I remember girls from school who went home for Fall Break in October and never came back. They were happier at home.One of the

One of the quotes I found most intriguing was on page 305.

But one woman in particular strode up to Dot, glaring and asked, “Aren’t you ashamed you helped build a bomb that killed all those people?”
The truth was, Dot did have conflicting feelings. There was sadness at the loss of live, yes, but that wasn’t the only thing she felt. They had all been so happy, so thrilled, when the war ended. Didn’t any of these people remember that? And yes, Oak Ridgers felt horrible when they saw the pictures of the aftermath in Japan. Relief. Fear. Joy. Sadness. Decades later, how could she explain this to someone who had no experience with the Project, someone who hadn’t lived through that war, let alone lived in Oak Ridge?
Dot knew the woman wanted a simple answer, so she gave her one.
“Well,” she said, “they killed my brother.”

I asked the women of our group what they would say if they were Dot and asked this question. Most believed they would have conflicting feelings like Dot did. How many lives were saved by bombing the cities? A member said that his father was supposed to be one of the first to invade Japan if the invasion had ended up like the Invasion of Normandy. There are numbers that tell us how many lives would have been lost if that happened. This article predicts American casualties alone t 267,000 – 800,000 with Japanese deaths higher. When you look at the death toll from the atomic bombs at just under 100,000, the math seems to support it. But that doesn’t mean it feels right.

We wondered if the secret of the project could be kept today with modern technology and communication. Modern culture tends to over-share and over-communicate the details of our lives in a manner and efficiency that was unimaginable in the 1940s. We’re not saying that there are no secret government projects, only that 70,000 civilians would not be brought in to work on them. I don’t know if it could be done in 2015. As far as a secret facility, I would think it would show up on Google Earth, but Iraq was able to build an underground facility that went unnoticed for a long time.One of the women in our group was graduating high school during the war and was married in 1945. She remembers being in downtown Detroit when the news of victory came through and that she packed a picnic and went to Belle Isle to celebrate. While the war was going on, she was a nurse’s aid who would relieve the nurses while they were on breaks and lunch and had

One of the women in our group was graduating high school during the war and was married in 1945. She remembers being in downtown Detroit when the news of victory came through and that she packed a picnic and went to Belle Isle to celebrate. While the war was going on, she was a nurse’s aid who would relieve the nurses while they were on breaks and lunch and had several pen pals in the forces that she would write to. She recalls that none of them were in particularly combative areas. She says she hadn’t paid too much attention to world politics and news before the bombs dropped, but that that event was what helped her to realize how important it was to watch the news and be aware. The news was not easily accessible like it is today and it was an effort to pay attention to current events.The third Lit Lovers question was, “Discuss the role that patriotism played in everyday life during World War II. Do you think Americans today would be willing or able to make the same sacrifices—including top-secret jobs, deployment overseas, rationed goods, and strict censorship—that families of that era made? Why or why not?” Many felt that people today are more skeptical than those of the WWII era. We are more likely to question our government. After 9/11, there was a resurgence of patriotism and after that tragedy, the country might have been willing to commit like it did during WWII. However, the war that followed was funded largely by China and the US citizens didn’t have to sacrifice the way that they did in 1945. The Second World War was a very classless war; everyone fought. Vietnam and Korea were not the same way and the veterans of those wars were not treated with the same dignity. Veterans now are treated better.

The third Lit Lovers question was, “Discuss the role that patriotism played in everyday life during World War II. Do you think Americans today would be willing or able to make the same sacrifices—including top-secret jobs, deployment overseas, rationed goods, and strict censorship—that families of that era made? Why or why not?” Many felt that people today are more skeptical than those of the WWII era. We are more likely to question our government. After 9/11, there was a resurgence of patriotism and after that tragedy, the country might have been willing to commit like it did during WWII. However, the war that followed was funded largely by China and the US citizens didn’t have to sacrifice the way that they did in 1945. The Second World War was a very classless war; everyone fought. Vietnam and Korea were not the same way and the veterans of those wars were not treated with the same dignity. Veterans now are treated better.Many of the characters in this story started to blend together for many of us. They had similar stories and met similar men. They were like the cogs in a wheel that ran a machine in a factory. In the beginning, we all said we struggled to keep them separate and know each one’s story, but we realized that it didn’t matter too much and the overall experience was important, not so much the individual stories.

Many of the characters in this story started to blend together for many of us. They had similar stories and met similar men. They were like the cogs in a wheel that ran a machine in a factory. In the beginning, we all said we struggled to keep them separate and know each one’s story, but we realized that it didn’t matter too much and the overall experience was important, not so much the individual stories.

The prevalence of spying in the novel was surprising to many of us. Being asked to spy on your own neighbor was a horrifying thought. We hated that the people would rat each other out for small things that, in the long run, weren’t doing any damage. Though, the need for high security was justified in that time and with that work. We thought that it would be hard to have a relationship of any kind with your coworkers because you couldn’t talk about the thing you had in common; work.

The segregation in the novel was surprising to some of us, but we recognized it as part of everyday life a Southern state during WWII. Kattie’s experience was one of the few that stuck out to me because of how different it was. The story of Ebb Cade was also horrifying. We wondered if he would have been subjected to similar treatment if he was a white man.

We took this question a step further and wondered if the bombs would have been used against Germany. We know that the Japanese were interned during WWII partly because they were easy to locate because of appearance differences. Is it easier to think of those who look different as separate? Is it easier to bomb them as well? Because the German’s fit the American majority of ‘white European,’ would we have bombed them? It’s an interesting question that we were unable to answer.

One of the big players in the book with very little face time is Truman. Those who remember WWII remember him as the man who ended the war, not the man who dropped the bomb. Now that the effects of nuclear bombs are known, he has a less favorable reputation. At the time, the war ending meant an improved quality of life for many people. There were fewer restrictions on products and communication. Though important then, we don’t tend to think of these effects now.

We wondered about Oak Ridge after the war. This was a farming area before and suddenly there were high-tech facilities and an abundance of people. Though many of them moved away, some stayed. What did they do with the buildings? Who wanted to live in the former dorm rooms when they had a chance to go somewhere else?I know this is a longer post so thank you if you made it this far! We had a great discussion. Our next book is Breakfast with Buddha by Roland Merullo.

I know this is a longer post so thank you if you made it this far! We had a great discussion. Our next book is Breakfast with Buddha by Roland Merullo.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Book Review: The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernen (4/5)

23 Mar

It’s been a long time since I read a quality non-fiction that I enjoyed. We’ve had a few book club flops and I haven’t picked up much on my own. So I am excited to say that I really enjoyed our last selection, The Girls of Atomic City. The title seemed familiar like I’d read a blogger review of it before. Leave me a note if that was you and we can gush about this book in the comments.

Cover Image via Goodreads.com

Cover Image via Goodreads.com

The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II by Denise Kiernan

Summary from Goodreads:

The incredible story of the young women of Oak Ridge, Tennessee, who unwittingly played a crucial role in one of the most significant moments in U.S. history.

The Tennessee town of Oak Ridge was created from scratch in 1942. One of the Manhattan Project’s secret cities, it didn’t appear on any maps until 1949, and yet at the height of World War II it was using more electricity than New York City and was home to more than 75,000 people, many of them young women recruited from small towns across the South. Their jobs were shrouded in mystery, but they were buoyed by a sense of shared purpose, close friendships—and a surplus of handsome scientists and Army men!

But against this vibrant wartime backdrop, a darker story was unfolding. The penalty for talking about their work—even the most innocuous details—was job loss and eviction. One woman was recruited to spy on her coworkers. They all knew something big was happening at Oak Ridge, but few could piece together the true nature of their work until the bomb “Little Boy” was dropped over Hiroshima, Japan, and the secret was out. The shocking revelation: the residents of Oak Ridge were enriching uranium for the atomic bomb.

Though the young women originally believed they would leave Oak Ridge after the war, many met husbands there, made lifelong friends, and still call the seventy-year-old town home. The reverberations from their work there—work they didn’t fully understand at the time—are still being felt today. In The Girls of Atomic City, Denise Kiernan traces the astonishing story of these unsung WWII workers through interviews with dozens of surviving women and other Oak Ridge residents.

The slow speed at which I read this book should be in no way a reflection on its quality. The last time I read a non-fiction book with this much interest was Steve Luxenberg’s Annie’s Ghosts. Kiernan’s story was well paced and I liked that she changed between the women while telling her story. It was a little hard to keep straight who was who because a lot of the stories had similar elements, but I enjoyed getting the wide range of stories from the variety of women.

I think Kiernan portrayed these women well. Each had her own story and it was obvious that Kiernan took the time to conduct thorough interviews with each of them. I liked that the women had a wide range of backgrounds as far as where they were from, education, family, and jobs. It helped tell a complete story of life in Oak Ridge.

Jane was my favorite. I related to her as an educated woman and I liked that she challenged what a woman could do at that time. She wanted to blaze her own path and when society stepped in and said ‘no,’ it only made her step in another direction but she didn’t stop walking. I wish she’d been able to become an engineer, but I think she did well by herself in her career and it seemed like she found satisfaction in her job.

The women in Oak Ridge were no different from women at any other time and place in America. Their concerns were over men and work and family and their futures. These are the same things my grandma was worried about at the same time in Michigan or my relatives in Ohio were thinking about. These stories are extraordinary because of what these women were doing unknowingly, but they are average in how they live. They are every woman even though they are special.

Denise Kiernan Image via The Daily Show

Denise Kiernan
Image via The Daily Show

I loved how the people of Oak Ridge found out what they had been working on. Many had figured out parts of it, but no one had a full picture of what was going on. Even after it was announced that they worked on the bomb, there were still questions. How did each piece fit into the puzzle? How did one woman turning a knob, another checking pipes, and another crunching numbers have to do with a nuclear bomb? I thought this confusion was really well written. There is often confusion and missed knowledge after a large global event and I thought Kiernan captured this well in her book.

The middle seemed to drag a bit to me. The description of the social clubs was nice, but sometimes too much. The housing situations were overdone a bit. The hardships of living in Oak Ridge were apparent at the beginning of the novel and I didn’t think to push them so much toward the end was needed.

Every day people can do extraordinary things. Wars are not fought by governments alone but by the men and women of the country who go without sidewalks and are moved out of their apartments at a moment’s notice and who might not even know what they’re doing. When we hear about the hardships of war that those in the 1940s lived through, it’s hard to imagine in the US today. Our troops are overseas and far away and the war effort doesn’t impact us on a daily basis. I loved Kiernan’s descriptions of how these people lived and the means they lived with to support their family and friends overseas.

Writer’s Takeaway: I don’t see myself ever writing historical non-fiction, but if I do, I hope it’s as beautifully written and Kiernan. There are some amazing non-fiction pieces out there and I would count Kiernan’s among them. It’s wonderful when a historical story reads like fiction and I thought Kiernan did that. She used a variety of people’s voices to weave the story so that it wasn’t a single person’s account (like Zeitoun or Anne Frank). A single voice isn’t a bad thing, but it doesn’t give a whole picture. I liked that Kiernan painted a mural instead of a portrait.

Very enjoyable story and one that gives a voice to people whose voices had been previously lost in the WWII conversation. Four out of Five stars.

This book fulfills the 1940-1959 time period of my When Are You Reading? Challenge.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Related Post:
Book Review: The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II | Literary Hoarders

WWW Wednesday, 18-March-2015

18 Mar

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


StonehengeCurrently reading:  I’ve made a lot of progress on La Sombra del Viento by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. My goal is to finish this book by the end of the year, but I suspect that I’ll finish it sooner than that. It’s very tiring to read in another language, but I’m really enjoying it at the same time.
I lost my eBook, Left Behind by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins until another copy becomes available. So you can consider this one on hold for a bit. It’s a shame because I was really enjoying it and the plot was starting to move a lot faster!
The audiobook on my phone is Stonehenge by Bernard Cornwell. The story just took a really interesting turn so I’m enthralled and want to keep it moving. It gives me a good excuse to cook some complicated dishes this week!
The audiobook in my car is The Round House by Louise Erdrich. This is no happy read but I’m in love with the author’s style and it makes my commute really enjoyable.

Atomic CityRecently finished: I finished The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan last week after this post went up. I really liked the writing and I learned more about the Manhattan Project than I ever would have otherwise.

Only one book review this week, The (Forgotten) Laws of Expectation by Nicole M. Jacob. Let me know how my first poetry review went!

White TigerReading Next: I’m still waiting to read The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga. My other co-worker-reading-buddy has it now so we’re finally moving forward with this one.


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 11-March-2015

11 Mar

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading, and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently reading:  I’m still working on my resolution to read a book in Spanish and I’ve picked La Sombra del Viento by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. I have a plan to get to it, but haven’t reached that point yet. As I say every week, it should be soon!
I’m working on my new eBook, Left Behind by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. Not a lot of progress this week, just breakfasts and waiting at the chiropractor. Ho hum.
Atomic CityI’m reading a physical copy of The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan. I’m making the majority of my movement here and I’m clipping along at a good pace. I hope to finish this week and get back to Sombra.
The audiobook on my phone is Stonehenge by Bernard Cornwell. The narrator’s voice is still a little bit grating, but I’m really enjoying the story so far and I’m looking forward to being with this one for a long time because it’s 17 hours! Yep, a whopper.
I began the audiobook of The Round House by Louise Erdrich. This is my book club’s next selection and I’m excited about it. It’s been recommended to me several times and I missed the meeting where my other book club met to talk about it.

Recently finished: After all the progress last week, I’ve got nothing this week. I guess that’s the way this reading stuff goes. Oh well.

Two book reviews since last week! I reviewed Zeitoun by Dave Eggers and The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey by Walter Mosley. Both were quality reads.

Reading Next: I’m still waiting to read The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga. Yes, this has been here forever, but it’s the only upcoming book on my radar and I’m not sure when it’s going to get here. I plan to spend my time getting back to Sombra and making movement on that one.


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 4-March-2015

4 Mar

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading, and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently reading:  I’m still working on my resolution to read a book in Spanish and I’ve picked La Sombra del Viento by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. No movement on it this week but I keep seeing it on my bed-side table and thinking I need to get back to it.
Left BehindI’m working on my new eBook, Left Behind by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. This past week was really busy and I slowed down my reading in general and didn’t get to a lot of this one, unfortunately. I hope it takes a turn soon because the action seems to have slowed.
I’m reading a physical copy of The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan. It’s really great so far and I’m enjoying the story a lot. There’s nothing better than well-written historical narratives to me. They make me feel well-informed and happy at the same time.
I started a new audiobook to bide my time until my library hold comes in. My mom recommended Stonehenge by Bernard Cornwell to me a while ago. She said it reminded of of Ken Follett and that got me to pick it up right away.

Recently finished: We finally finished The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway! It’s been a long journey but after a lot of driving this weekend, we finished it off. I’m glad we did and I’m hoping I remember the beginning well enough to write my review!
Ptolemy GreyI finished the audio for The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey by Walter Mosley on Friday. The story started out a little hard to read for me but by the end I was really enjoying the story. I’m glad I read this one. Review coming soon.
On Monday night, I spent an hour or so going through The (Forgotten) Rules of Expectations written by my good friend, Nicole M. Jacob. This is a great little collection of poetry and if you’re a fan, I recommend this read.

Only one review written last week, but it seems to have been a really popular one; Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell. I adored the book and it seems a lot of you did, too!

Reading Next: I’m still waiting to read The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga. The woman who owns the copy went on vacation but just got back and gave our other member a copy. I’ll see how long until I get a hold of it.
Round HouseMy book club’s next selection is The Round House by Louise Erdrich. I have the audiobook on hold and I hope to start it soon!

Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Friday Book Memes, 27-February-2015

27 Feb

Welcome to the ‘When Will Winter End?’ edition of Book Beginnings and The Friday 56 hosted by Rose City Reader and Freda on Freda’s Voice. Head on over there and check out the other participating blogs.

I got a new book club selection this week that I want to feature. It’s The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan. I haven’t read much into it yet, but here are your Friday Memes!

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Book Beginnings is all about that very important opening sentence (or two) that us writers are always worrying about! Kiernan begins:

That morning, the excitement coursing through the complex known as the Castle was infectious. The words no one was supposed to speak, the words many had not even know existed, ricocheted off walls and flew freely from the mouths of even the least informed inhabitants of Site X.

I love it! From the subtitle you know that these people were involved in building the atomic bombs that helped end World War II. I like this way of showing the reader that these women didn’t know what they were doing and that they were as equally shocked as the nation to find out the truth. Great start!

Friday 56

The way this meme works is pretty simple. If you want to join in, head over to Freda’s blog and add your link.

Rules:
*Grab a book, any book (I grab the one I’m currently reading)
*Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader
*Find any sentence, (or few, just don’t spoil it) that grab you.
*Post it.

I haven’t reached page 56 yet, but I like the image this one gives of the timeline of the war and the Project.

But in December 1938, events had transpired that would send the first ripples across the Atlantic of the unleashed power of what the Greeks called atomos, news that had resulted in the birth of the Project.

I never thought of the development of the atomic bombs, only of what happened when they were detonated. I’m excited to read this book and learn more about this incredible and destructive invention.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 25-February-2015

25 Feb

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading, and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Currently reading:  Again, no movement on The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway. It’s been a long time on this one and my husband and I have talked about finishing it separately because we haven’t had a lot of car rides together. I think I might take it on after I finish Ptolemy Grey. Hopefully that can be soon.
SombraOne of my resolutions this year was to read a book in Spanish and I’ve picked La Sombra del Viento by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. I’ve gotten through a bit of this one this week, but not too much. It’s what I pick up between other books. I’ll get it by the end of the year.
I’m working on my new eBook, Left Behind by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. I’ve made better progress than I expected on this one, it’s really interesting. I’ve heard the series is really long and I’m not sure if I’ll finish all of them, but I’m enjoying this first installment.
My audiobook is The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey by Walter Mosley. I’m liking the story more as I go. It was hard to follow at first but I’m getting better at figuring it out and I like a lot of the characters. It’s not going to end well, but I still like the journey.
My book club met Monday and I got our next title, The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan. I’m not too far in it yet, but the topic seems really interesting and I’m excited to read more. Come back Friday for a preview.

ZeitounRecently finished: I sped through Zeitoun by Dave Eggers last week. The story was really interesting and I’m still a little nervous to look into the recent news about Zeitoun. I want to like him and I heard the news will change my mind.

I got through two book reviews last week. The first was The Diviners by Libba Bray which I really enjoyed. I’ll look forward to the next installment of the series. The second was Claire of the Sea Light by Edwidge Danticat. Our book club discussion on that title was this past Monday so I’ll have a book club reflection up soon.

White TigerReading Next: The girls at work and I are going to be reading The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga soon. I’ll be getting it a few weeks and I’ll have to squeeze it in between book club books but I’m determined to get it in. It sounds like a good one.

Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 18-February-2015

18 Feb

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading, and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Sun Also RisesCurrently reading:  No movement on The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway. We had house guests this weekend so the hubby and I didn’t have much lone driving time. I’m antsy to finish this so I hope to soon. I think we only have one disk left!
One of my resolutions this year was to read a book in Spanish and I’ve picked La Sombra del Viento by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. I might have read five pages, so slow-going is an understatement here. It’s a good story, I just don’t have the time to really devote to the book and get through it.
I’m working on my new eBook, Left Behind by Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. I’ve read four chapters so it’s slow, but the book’s keeping my interest well. I’ll be interested to see how the movie adaptation is because this one is quite religious and I’m not sure they’d keep that for a mass-release movie but I hope they kept to the book.
My book club book for March is Zeitoun by Dave Eggers. I’ve read two Eggers books before and loved both of them. I really like this one so far and I’m reading it faster than expected. I’ve heard that there’s some controversy about the main subject, but I’m avoiding it until I finish the book and can form my own opinions.
My new audiobook is The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey by Walter Mosley. The book is mostly written from the point of view of a man with dementia so it’s a bit hard to follow at times but it’s really interesting to follow his train of thought. I’ll have to see how I feel when I get farther into this one.

EleanorRecently finished:I finished Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell on audio. I LOVED IT but had a problem with the ending (typical Rowell reaction from me). I’ll go over it in my review so look forward to that one.

I’ve published two reviews, Doomsday Book by Connie Willis and The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera, which was Read Along #3. Look for Read-Along #4, probably in March or April!

Atomic CityReading Next:  On Monday I’ll get my next book club selection, The Girls of Atomic City by Denise Kiernan. We usually do one non-fiction every six months and this one looks like a great choice!

Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

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