Tag Archives: World Without End

Challenge Update, January 2017

2 Feb

New year, new books! It was a good month for me as far as reading is concerned. I’m actually pretty proud of this and I know a lot is due to how much I was running this month. You can look at my progress at any time on my challenge page.

Books finished in January:

Trap // Robert K. Tanenbaum
States of Confusion // Paul Jury
South of Broad // Pat Conroy
The Birthday Boys // Beryl Bainbridge
World Without End // Ken Follett
Mrs. Dalloway // Virginia Woolf

A few long ones this month and a few I’ve been working on for quite a while.

When Are You Reading? Challenge

5/12
This is my challenge to read a book from 12 different time periods. You can read about it here. With my historical fiction love, this is off to a great start. The five books already filled 4 time periods! I think I’ll continue to struggle with the 1600s this year, but that’s a problem for November (again).

Goodreads Challenge

6/50
Ahead of schedule already! This is a good start for me. I was nervous about the 50 goal but I’m feeling good about it now. I’m flying through audiobooks and I’m looking forward to knocking a few off of my TBR shelf.

WithoutEndBook of the Month

World Without End by Ken Follett is a clear choice for me. I adored this book and I just found out that there’s a sequel that I’m beyond pumped to read! If you’re up for super-long books, this series is highly recommended.

Added to my TBR

So, I added four but my TBR went down by one to 119! I guess that’s some kind of progress? A bit?

  • You Are An Ironman by Jacques Steinberg. I was volunteering at the library sale and I told myself I wasn’t going to buy anything. I have enough books, I didn’t need anymore! Well, then I saw this one. Many of you know I’m a triathlete so it seemed like fate that this book was on top of the first box I moved. I caved, I bought it.
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay by J.K. Rowling. Does this need any explanation? I didn’t think so.
  • The Girl in Green by Derek B. Miller. I adored Miller’s first work, Norwegian by Night, and can’t wait to see what else he can cook up.
  • A Column of Fire by Ken Follett. The third in the series. As I said, I have to. I adore Follett’s books.

Personal Challenge

I mentioned in my challenge announcement post that I had some non-reading goals set for myself in 2017. I figured this would be a good place to keep myself accountable to those as well. Here goes!

  • Keep my 4.0 GPA: I don’t start classes until next week so we’ll see!
  • Knit blankets:  I finished two this month and already sent one out. My cousins’ wife is pregnant so I’ll be sending another out soon! I post pictures of my blankets on Instagram regularly so check there for updates.
  • One race per month: I did my first indoor triathlon in January with a friend. I tied for second amongst women!
  • Get my novel out to beta readers: Done! I sent it to four wonderful friends and asked for it back by May. That should give me time to get school out of the way for a bit.

How were your challenges? I hope you made it. If you love historical fiction, give some thought to my challenge for 2017, it’s fun!

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, 1-February-2017

1 Feb

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm 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?

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


libraryCurrently reading: I’m getting very close to the end of Misterio de la Guia de Ferrocarriles by Agatha Christie. It takes a lot of effort for me to read it, but I’m getting toward the end and can feel Poirot closing in on the murderer!
No move on Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs. It will likely be until my road trip later this month before we make any headway on this one.
I’m already on the third chapter of The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler. I was fortunate to have a few lunches to read last week and I got into it. I like it so far but I’m curious to see where Swyler goes with it and why she chose to have a male narrator.

WithoutEndRecently finished: I finished World Without End by Ken Follett after my post went up last Wednesday. I loved it! My review went up Monday. A full 5 out of 5 stars.
I also finished Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf which was slightly less enjoyable. Many of you thought it might be because I listened to it and I think that’s probably right. Still, it wasn’t one I really enjoyed. 2 out of 5 stars. My review went up yesterday.

I also posted a review for The Birthday Boys by Beryl Bainbridge which went up last Thursday. Not my favorite of Bainbridge’s novels, but still enjoyable and very educational. 3 out of 5 stars.

awayReading Next: I’m so close to starting Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling! I can almost feel it haha. I see it on my shelf almost every day and I can’t wait to pull it down and dig in.
I’ll be starting a new audiobook today, Away by Amy Bloom. I put this one on my list because it’s a 1920s era book. I own a copy which I found at a book warehouse but in order to get through my TBR faster, I’m going to listen to it.


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!

Book Review: World Without End by Ken Follett (5/5)

30 Jan

My mom has always been a fan of Follett’s and I read his first book, The Pillars of the Earth, and loved it. I put this second book on my TBR but took my sweet time getting to it because I knew it would be long and it would take me a long time to get through it. It was a real struggle. I listened to it on eaudio and lost the hold, having to wait almost three months before I got it back and still did not finish it. I got through the last 8 hours with a book-on-CD edition that was equivalent to a passenger in my car for about a month. Per Goodreads, it took me over five months to read this book. And I loved every minutes of it!

Cover image via Goodreads

Cover image via Goodreads

World Without End by Ken Follett (The Pillars of the Earth #2)

Other books by Ken Follett reviewed on this blog:

Pillars of the Earth (5/5)

Summary from Goodreads:

World Without End takes place in the same town of Kingsbridge, two centuries after the townspeople finished building the exquisite Gothic cathedral that was at the heart of The Pillars of the Earth. The cathedral and the priory are again at the center of a web of love and hate, greed and pride, ambition and revenge, but this sequel stands on its own. This time the men and women of an extraordinary cast of characters find themselves at a crossroad of new ideas— about medicine, commerce, architecture, and justice. In a world where proponents of the old ways fiercely battle those with progressive minds, the intrigue and tension quickly reach a boiling point against the devastating backdrop of the greatest natural disaster ever to strike the human race—the Black Death.

I was a little skeptical that this book wouldn’t live up to the first one but man, was I worried about nothing. This book was incredible from the beginning and I loved every second of it. I cared about every character (maybe Ralph not so much) and I adored getting to know them and watching them grow up during the book. The length was daunting but I knew it also meant getting rich characters and a deep plot.

I loved the variety of characters Follett created. It was fun to have two clever young people as the main characters in the story. Watching them grow up and become a man and a woman in charge of their town was rewarding. But Follett has other characters who aren’t as smart and who balanced Merthin and Caris well. Gwenda and Wulfric seem like more grounded examples of people from the time and who made the book seem grounded in history despite Merthin and Caris feeling like people ahead of their time. Ralph helped root the story in a time when military prowess could change a man from an outlaw to an Earl. He was just the right amount of evil for this book.

It was easy to love Caris. She is very modern in how practical she is and how self-sufficient she can be. She loves Merthin, but there are things she finds more important than him and will put him aside to deal with. Her dedication to the hospital is commendable and her logic in a time of crisis makes her stand out. She was saying things that I, as a modern reader, wanted to say. Listening to other medical professionals made her smart, but figuring out what worked and what didn’t was where she excelled. It was like seeing how medical advancements were possible. She was really inspiring.

I related to Caris best. While Gwenda was a good character, she had a lot of terrible things happen to her that I had trouble relating to. Merthin was more of an engineering mind than I am and I’d hate to think I’m anything like Ralph. Caris was almost single-minded in her focus and I know that’s something I do from time to time. Her dedication to something reminded me of myself and how I’ll sometimes ignore my family or other obligations when I have something I’m focusing on.

Ken Follett Image via the author's website

Ken Follett
Image via the author’s website

The Black Death was a great antagonist in this book. Fighting against Philemon, Godwyn, and Ralph was bad, but the Black Death was the best fight in the book. It seemed almost convenient that our main characters were all immune to the disease and I almost wish at least one of them had died of it because it would have been a bit more believable. The fear Kingsbridge expressed at the third outbreak was very justified and I believed that they were willing to forgo so much financially for a chance of missing the plague completely.

All the parts of the book I disliked were about Ralph. He was so angry and mean that every time he narrated, I expected something terrible to happen. I started to expect it. What he did to Gwenda, Tillie, and Philippa was terrible and was made worse by how he justified his actions. He was an awful person but Follett gave him motivations that were believable which was the worst part.

John Lee narrated the audiobook and I was excited to hear his voice. He did an incredible job with Pillars and I knew he’d do a great job with this one. I only hope he does the final book as well. His voices for different characters were distinct without being annoying and they fit the characters well. Wulfric, for example, had a slower cadence to his voice which fit with him being a thoughtful person. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for another book with ‘Lee’ and ‘Follett’ on the cover!

Follett had a lot to say about love. Caris and Merthin had to wait a long time before they could be husband and wife and even then, it would be interrupted. Caris was a nun for a large part of the book and it seemed she was going to put Merthin off indefinitely so she could pursue the hospital. But in the end, like in Pillars, love finds a way. Gwenda and Wulfric were married for most of the book but Gwenda was always jealous and thought Wulfric could be tempted away. She didn’t fully trust him around other women until the end when she finally realized how dedicated Wulfric was. It was touching to see all the fears her narration had put into my head squashed when she realized his dedication.

Writer’s Takeaway: Follett doesn’t let a plotline drop. Small things that happened along the way would come back into play. The very opening scene with the children and Sir/Brother Thomas in the woods played a crucial role in the end. Comments about what was being built or who was ill would come back and be important later. It’s best not to load a reader down with information that isn’t important to the scene and isn’t necessary later in the book. With a book over 1,000 pages long, Follett had to be sure every sentence mattered and he did.

I adored this book and recommend it very highly. You don’t have to read Pillars to enjoy this book, they could be read separately and be loved. A full Five out of Five stars.

This book fulfills the Pre-1500 time period for 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 Posts:
World Without End (Ken Follett 2007) | The Discerning Writer
How deeply can a book influence you? | Francette’s Blog

WWW Wednesday, 25-January-2017

25 Jan

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm 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?

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


dallowayCurrently reading: I’m on the last disk for World Without End by Ken Follett and I hope to wrap it up today or tomorrow. I’ll be sad when this one ends but it was a great ride and if there’s a third in this series, I’ll read it in a heartbeat.
I’m making steady progress with Misterio de la Guia de Ferrocarriles by Agatha Christie. Reading in another language puts me to bed really fast so I don’t get a ton of this read each night, but some. I’ll keep chipping away at it.
Again, nothing with Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs. I’ll have to wait until February when we have a few road trips planned. Sigh.
I started a new audiobook on my phone, Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf. Maybe this is one not to listen to but I’m not enjoying it very much. It’s turned very inward and jumps around between the characters a lot which I wasn’t ready for and I’m having trouble following it.
I need a new ebook and decided to turn to The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler. I have a lot of time to read at lunch this week so it will be nice to escape for a while. This book was really hot for a while but seems to have faded out a bit since then. I’m excited to pick it up and see what it’s all about!

Rbirthdayboysecently finished: I decided not to get out of bed on Saturday until I finished The Birthday Boys by Beryl Bainbridge. It didn’t take too long as most of the last 10% of the book was a biography of Bainbridge full of pictures. My review will be up tomorrow. As always, I enjoyed Bainbridge’s style but this time I had a slightly harder time following the characters than I have before.
I finished South of Broad by Pat Conroy on Thursday and absolutely loved it. My review went up on Monday so please check that out if you have the time. It was a great book. I gave it a full Five out of Five stars and I now want to go to Charleston.

Hanging OutReading Next: I keep having to stop myself from grabbing Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling off my shelf. I will as soon as I finish Christie but not before then.

Shameless Plug: If you’re still looking for reading challenges in 2017, take a look at my historical fiction reading challenge, When Are You Reading? Let me know you’re interested and I’ll add you to the participant list. I had 13 people participate last year and I’d love to have a bigger group this year!


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, 18-January-2017

18 Jan

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm 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!

IMG_1384-0

The Three Ws are:

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

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


statesofconfusionCurrently reading: I only have three disks left in World Without End by Ken Follett. The audiobook is so big it will be nice to have it out of my car soon, haha. Yay for progress!
Not too much with The Birthday Boys by Beryl Bainbridge this week. I had some irregular lunches and not a lot of time waiting at the doctor this week. It’s going pretty fast, though, and I think I’ll wrap it up in the next month or two.
I didn’t listen to South of Broad by Pat Conroy during my long run this weekend. I needed to concentrate on my breathing in the cold weather so I missed out on about an hour of that. Ah well. I need to finish it up in the next couple weeks for my book club meeting but that should be no problem.
I’m back into Misterio de la Guia de Ferrocarriles by Agatha Christie though it’s slow going. I usually take longer to get through my Spanish books so it’s expected. I hope to wrap up soon-ish.
Again, nothing with Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs. We’re going on a road trip next month and to be honest, that might be the next time I listen to it at all.

Recently finished: I finished up States of Confusion by Paul Jury pretty quickly. It was a fun memoir, but not my favorite. My review for it went up on Monday if you want to check that out. I gave it Three out of Five Stars.

I also finished my review for Trap by Robert K. Tanenbaum. It was not a genre I enjoyed, but it was still a fast read. I gave it Three out of Five Stars as well.

Hanging OutReading Next: The plan is still to read Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling. It’s tempting to put Christie aside and start this, but I’m going to wait it out and try to shrink my Currently Reading list just a bit.

Shameless Plug: If you’re still looking for reading challenges in 2017, take a look at my historical fiction reading challenge, When Are You Reading? Let me know you’re interested and I’ll add you to the participant list. I had 13 people participate last year and I’d love to have a bigger group this year!


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-January-2017

11 Jan

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm 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!

IMG_1384-0

The Three Ws are:

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

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


statesofconfusionCurrently reading: I’ve made a bit of progress with World Without End by Ken Follett this week. I try to turn it on whenever possible in my car so I can keep listening to it. I’m loving it and I’ll be sad and happy when it ends.
I got to read The Birthday Boys by Beryl Bainbridge during lunch twice since last week. I’m at about 60% of this book and I hope to push through and finish it soon.
My friends and I are competing in a year-long running challenge and I’ve been very motivated to listen to South of Broad by Pat Conroy during my runs. I’m finally over half way and I think I’ll just finish before my book club at the end of the month.
I made decent progress with Misterio de la Guia de Ferrocarriles by Agatha Christie but set it aside because I have a new book! (see below)
No progress with Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs this week. My husband and I are very busy now in the beginning of the year. I’m not sure when we’ll get back to this one so it might be on here a while.
My Interlibrary Loan came in! I was able to get through a lot of States of Confusion by Paul Jury over the weekend and I read a bit more since the week started up. It’s a quick read so I’m hoping to finish this one soon.

Recently finished: With that huge list of current reads, it shouldn’t be a huge surprise I didn’t finish a single book! I keep picking up and putting down titles and starting on super long ones, it’s no wonder. I hope to add a few here soon!

I’ve gotten two reviews up since last week! The first is Once Upon a River by Bonnie Jo Campbell. I really enjoyed this book and will have a report up about my book club’s discussion of it soon. I gave it 4 out of 5 stars.
The second review is for The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt by Caroline Preston which I put up yesterday. This book was a fun adventure through the 1920s, my favorite era. I gave it a full 5 out of 5 stars.

Hanging OutReading Next: My class this semester will conflict with my book club meetings so, until May, I’m reading my own book list! I’ve been meaning to get to Mindy Kaling’s book Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? I know it’s been on this list a few times but I really REALLY mean to read it soon.

Shameless Plug: If you’re still looking for reading challenges in 2017, take a look at my historical fiction reading challenge, When Are You Reading? Let me know you’re interested and I’ll add you to the participant list. I had 13 people participate last year and I’d love to have a bigger group this year!


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-January-2017

4 Jan

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm 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!

IMG_1384-0

The Three Ws are:

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

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


libraryCurrently reading: I wasn’t able to make much progress with World Without End by Ken Follett during the holiday break. I didn’t drive anywhere alone and didn’t feel like forcing my husband to listen in so I didn’t make much progress. I’ll press on, though! It’s still really enjoyable.
Also not much with The Birthday Boys by Beryl Bainbridge. It’s still enjoyable and I’m moving through it at a moderate pace, but it will still be a while.
I had a cold over the weekend so all of my plans of listening to South of Broad by Pat Conroy and enjoying some long runs were dashed and replaced by me cooped up in bed. Sigh.
I was able to start Misterio de la Guia de Ferrocarriles by Agatha Christie as my Spanish-language read of the year. I hope I can move through this one quickly but my Spanish books always take longer because of the brain power they devour.
My husband and I started an audiobook together while we were driving to Ohio and back. We picked Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs, the third and final book of the Peculiar Children trilogy. We both enjoyed the first book but were not big fans of the second. We’re a bit skeptical about this one and we keep trying to pick out if there’s a traitor. It’s fun trying to be one step ahead of everyone.

trapRecently finished: I flew through The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt by Caroline Preston. It was a much shorter read than it at first appeared because so much of the story was told through pictures. I would compare it to a graphic novel in that respect. The story was a bit bare boned but it was really enjoyable and I would recommend it highly.
I picked up a book I didn’t intend to this week. My brother’s girlfriend got us all books for Christmas and I finished Frankie Pratt sooner than expected so I picked up my gift, Trap by Robert K. Tanenbaum. It wasn’t my usual genre but I read it quickly. I’ll say that’s partly due to interest and partly due to being sick and unable to get out of bed or off the couch much.

statesofconfusionReading Next: I’m still waiting for States of Confusion by Paul Jury to come in from the library. I’m not sure how long ILLs take so this might be here for a while.

Shameless Plug: If you’re still looking for reading challenges in 2017, take a look at my historical fiction reading challenge, When Are You Reading? Let me know you’re interested and I’ll add you to the participant list. I had 13 people participate last year and I’d love to have a bigger group this year!


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, 28-December-2016

28 Dec

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm 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?

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


frankieprattCurrently reading: It’s going slower but I’m making my way through World Without End by Ken Follett. The case holding the audiobook is huge! I feel bad for anyone who tries to sit in my passenger seat for the next month or so. I’m really glad to be finishing this one.
Two days of lunch-reading The Birthday Boys by Beryl Bainbridge as given me moderate progress. I wasn’t expecting the narration to change between shipmates and I can’t decide if I like it yet.
I’m enjoying  South of Broad by Pat Conroy a lot. It’s making me look forward to my runs, actually. The narrator is excellent which really helps.
While I waited for my ILL to come in, I picked up another ‘available at the library’ book off my list, which is The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt by Caroline Preston. I’ve been looking forward to this one for a long time because of the images of the 1920s and its unusual format.

onceuponRecently finished: I finished Once Upon a River by Bonnie Jo Campbell on Friday. The ending was a bit of a let down after the amazing book but it was still enjoyable. I’m thinking of reading more by this author because I enjoyed the main character, Margo, so much.

Only one book review since last week which is Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maass. I really enjoyed Maass’s book and I thought his suggestions were great because they can apply to so many different genres. I’m still planning on going through the workbook one of these days. I gave the book 4 out of 5 stars.

Hanging OutReading Next: I have a loan request out for States of Confusion by Paul Jury but I’m not sure how long that will take to come in. If I finish Frankie Pratt before the end of the year, I’ll pick up Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling from my shelf. If I finish after the new year, I’ll start my customary ‘book in Spanish’ for the year which will be Misterio de la Guia de Ferrocarriles by Agatha Christie, a Poirot mystery. It would be my first Christie book.


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, 21-December-2016

21 Dec

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm 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!

IMG_1384-0

The Three Ws are:

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

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


southofbroadCurrently reading: I have good news about World Without End by Ken Follett. I lost my eaudio hold on it (sad face) BUT it turns out my library has an unabridged copy on CD! I swear when I looked before it was only an abridged copy but I asked and was pointed to an unabridged version. I’ll continue with it on CD but it will take a bit longer to finish this way.
Minimal progress on The Birthday Boys by Beryl Bainbridge, mostly during my lunch breaks once or twice per week. The good thing is that this is a shorter book so it won’t take long to finish it even at my slow pace.
I’m still in love with Once Upon a River by Bonnie Jo Campbell and I wanted to have it finished before now. I’m hoping I won’t drag it out longer than next week.
I needed a new eaudiobook so I started  South of Broad by Pat Conroy. Despite its length, it seems short compared to World Without End because it’s half the length!

Recently finished: Nothing finished this week. (Insert sad face here.)

However, I got a few reviews up. The first was for The Tempest by William Shakespeare which I posted on Monday. I think I need to see the play live to really appreciate and understand it. The audiobook was a little much to follow. 3 out of 5 Stars.
The second was Only the Paranoid Survive by Andrew S. Grove which I posted yesterday. The book felt very dated to me and it was hard to think how Grove’s advice would apply to me. 2 out of 5 Stars.

statesofconfusionReading Next: Gosh, I really don’t know. I guess it’s time to turn to another library book which would leave me with States of Confusion by Paul Jury. I saw a funny video Jury made about his travels that got me interested in this book. It requires an interlibrary loan so I’ll keep my fingers crossed that it comes in. If it takes some time, I’m sure I can grab something off my shelf to fill the time.


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, 14-December-2016

14 Dec

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm 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?

Note: For users of Blogspot blogs, I’m unable to comment on your posts as a WordPress blogger unless you’ve enabled Name/URL comments. This is a known WordPress/Blogspot issue. Please consider enabling this to participate more fully in the community.


onceuponCurrently reading: A lot of my progress with World Without End by Ken Follett came to a halt while I was on vacation. There wasn’t a good time to listen to the audiobook between enjoying the weather and hanging out with my traveling companion. I lose the hold tomorrow and I’m afraid it’s going to be another small eternity until I get it bad. Sad face.
I didn’t make much progress The Birthday Boys by Beryl Bainbridge. Her books are easy to get back to so I’m looking forward to it when I find the time.
I am devouring Once Upon a River by Bonnie Jo Campbell. I’m completely in love with Margo and her terrible life that she’s managing to not only survive but thrive in. I can’t wait to keep reading this one!

breakoutRecently finished: I finished Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maass the morning I left Phoenix and I enjoyed it a lot. I got some great ideas for things to change in my book. I’ll be starting on the workbook as soon as I get those changes incorporated into the story and I’m excited to get it out to beta readers!

And reviews! This tidal wave will keep coming, I promise. First was Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler which I really enjoyed. It had the flapper view of Zelda I missed in an earlier book. 4/5 Stars
The second was In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson, a long-awaited one for those who have been with WWW for some time. It was worth the wait and, as it happens, I ran into a man at the airport on Sunday who was reading it! He had wonderful things to say about the book as well. 4/5 Stars.
Finally, The Lost Daughter by Elena Ferrante. This book was not my favorite but I’m still determined to read another of Ferrante’s books that’s on my shelf. 2/5 Stars

southofbroadReading Next: I have another book club selection on my shelf, South of Broad by Pat Conroy. This one is a chunkster so I’m hoping to get started on it with plenty of time to read it before the book club meets at the end of January.


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!