The Curious History and Meaning of the Word ‘Malapropism’

Great post! Thanks for the cool information. I especially like the reference to Dogberry in Shakespeare.Featured Image -- 1873

 

Interesting Literature

An interesting definition of a useful word

The word ‘malapropism’ is among the wordiest of words, denoting a misused word. Specifically, a malapropism is an erroneous word used in place of another, correct word, e.g. ‘at this pacific moment’ (rather than specific moment) or referring to a place of scientific experiment as a ‘lavatory’ rather than laboratory. So much for the technical meaning of the word ‘malapropism’ itself, but what is the history of the term?

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A Gentleman of France by Stanley Weyman

A Gentleman of France
Being the Memoirs of Gaston de Bonne Sieur de Marsac
by Stanley Weyman

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FirstChapFirstPara

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

The death of the Prince of Conde, which occurred in the spring of 1588, by depriving me of my only patron, reduced me to such straits that the winter of that year, which saw the King of Navarre come to spend his Christmas at St. Jean d’Angely, saw also the nadir of my fortunes. I did not know at this time–I may confess it to-day without shame–wither to turn for a gold crown or a new scabbard, and neither had nor discerned any hope of employment. The peace lately patched up at Blois between the King of France and the League persuaded many of the Huguenots that their final ruin was at hand; but it could not fill their exhausted treasury or enable them to put fresh troops into the field.

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TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

I think, as we sat our horses in the rain, the holly-bush not being large enough to shelter us all, we were as sorry a band as ever set out to rescue a lady; nor was it without pain that I looked round and saw myself reduced to command such people. There was scarcely one whole unpatched garment among us, and three of my squires had but a spur apiece.

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From the Stanley J. Weyman site:

Admired by renowned authors such as Stevenson, Wilde, and Rafael Sabatini, Stanley John Weyman is today a forgotten literary giant of the late 19th century. While for years his best-selling historical romances enchanted thousands of readers, today his books are mostly neglected.

One of his most well known novels was A Gentleman of France, which describes the “grand climacteric of a man’s life”.  Forty-year-old M. de Marsac is in the process of losing his finances and gentleman status. He has been forced to groom his own horse by cover of night and faces ridicule because of his tattered appearance when he goes before the court of Henry of Navarre seeking a commission. . . . . A silent film in 1921 was based on the novel.

For lovers of historical novels, A Gentleman of France (1893) is available free at Project Gutenberg in numerous formats. I’ve heard it described as The Three Musketeers without the tedious bits.

Reading Challenges – 4th Quarter and 2015 Wrap-up

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RMFAO2015

RMFAO 2015 Classics Challenge

With the top level being Level 5: Professor – 12 or more books, this one was a piece of cake for me and was completed during the second quarter. Extras added this quarter:

30. The Rise of Silas Lapham by William Dean Howells
31. Mont Oriol or A romance of Auvergne by Guy de Maupassant
32. Notre Coeur or A Woman’s Pastime by Guy de Maupassant
33. Evan Harrington by George Meredith
34. The Distracted Preacher by Thomas Hardy
35. The Octopus: A Story of California by Frank Norris
36. Diary of a Pilgrimage by Jerome K. Jerome

RMFAO 2015 Genre Challenge

October – Horror (Level 4: Bibliophile – 4 books)
1. Dead Ever After (Sookie Stackhouse #13) by Charlaine Harris
2. A Touch of Dead (collection of the Sookie short stories) by Charlaine Harris
3. After Dead: What Came Next in the World of Sookie Stackhouse by Charlaine Harris
4. Those Who Hunt the Night (James Asher #1) by Barbara Hambly

November – Historical (Level 1: Casual Reader – 1 book)
1. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

December – Adventure/Fantasy (Level 2: Frequent Reader – 2 books)
1. The Martian by Andy Weir
2. Shackleton’s Forgotten Men by Leonard Bickel

A success with at least one book for each genre. February – Crime/Mystery, with eight books read was my biggest month, followed by May – Classics/Literary with seven books.

RMFAO 2015 Series Challenge

The same as Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015 below with the addition of:

AMELIA PEABODY series by Elizabeth Peters
18. Tomb of the Golden Bird

A miserable fail! Out of five series I had planned to finish, I only finished one (the Stephanie Plum series shown below).

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Yvonne2015

What An Animal Reading Challenge VIII 2015

Level 2 – Read 7-12

7. Dead Ever After (Sookie Stackhouse #13) by Charlaine Harris
8. The Elegance of the Hedgehog (L’elegance du herisson) by Muriel Barbery
9. Tomb of the Golden Bird (Amelia Peabody #18) by Elizabeth Peters
10. A Bone to Pick (Aurora Teagarden #2) by Charlaine Harris
11. The Octopus: A Story of California by Frank Norris

Completed. Luckily for me, the qualification rules are very broad.

Cruisin’ Thru the Cozies Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Sleuth Extraordinaire – Read 20 or more

17. Death of a Liar (Hamish Macbeth #31) by M. C. Beaton
18. Notorious Nineteen (Stephanie Plum #19) by Janet Evanovich
19. Takedown Twenty (Stephanie Plum #20) by Janet Evanovich
20. Top Secret Twenty-One (Stephanie Plum #21) by Janet Evanovich
21. Tomb of the Golden Bird (Amelia Peabody #18) by Elizabeth Peters
22. A Bone to Pick (Aurora Teagarden #2) by Charlaine Harris

Successfully completed and loads of fun doing it!

Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Expert series reader – Complete 4 or more series. A massive failure. It seemed so doable in January, yet I only managed to complete one series. There were seven unread books on the list (eight counting the extra series for the RMFAO Challenge). I blame my failure on getting hooked on Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse series and reading nine of them in 2015. They weren’t on the list – but it was worth it as I really enjoyed the series.

Books read this quarter and the only series completed this year:

STEPHANIE PLUM series by Janet Evanovich
19. Notorious Nineteen
20. Takedown Twenty
21. Top Secret Twenty-One

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Riedel2015Mystery

My Kind Of Mystery 2015

February 1, 2015 – January 31, 2016

Level 5: Invisible Floor 41 or more:

33. Roadkill by Kinky Friedman
34. Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris
35. Death of a Liar by M. C. Beaton
36. Notorious Nineteen by Janet Evanovich
37. Those Who Hunt the Night by Barbara Hambly
38. Takedown Twenty by Janet Evanovich
39. Top Secret Twenty-One by Janet Evanovich
40. Tomb of the Golden Bird by Elizabeth Peters
41. A Bone to Pick by Charlaine Harris

Since this is not a calendar year Challenge, there is still one month to go. But it is already completed, so – success!

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GoodReads2015

My 2015 Goodreads Challenge was 100 books. Success! Completed on the last day of the year.

Reading Challenges – 3rd Quarter 2015

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20BooksSummer

20 Books of Summer 2015 hosted by Cathy at 746 Books ended September 4. My wrap-up post is here.

RMFAO2015

RMFAO 2015 Classics Challenge

The top level for this Challenge is Level 5: Professor – 12 or more books which I completed during the second quarter. Extras for this quarter include:

21. Rameau’s Nephew by Denis Diderot
22. The Gambler by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
23. The Magician by Somerset Maugham
24. The Nemesis of Fire by Algernon Blackwood
25. Fifteen Hundred Miles an Hour by Charles Dixon
26. Ourika by Claire de Duras
27. The Morgesons by Elizabeth Stoddard
28. Three Men on the Bummel by Jerome K. Jerome
29. Wyllard’s Weird by Mary Elizabeth Braddon

RMFAO 2015 Genre Challenge

This is still my favorite Reading Challenge for the year! A different genre is explored each month and a different level may be chosen for each month. The third quarter of 2015:

July – Dystopian/Apocalyptic (Level 1: Casual Reader – 1 book):
1. Frozen (Heart of Dread #1) by Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston

August – Contemporary (Level 2: Frequent Reader – 2 books):
1. U is for Undertow (Kinsey Millhone #21) by Sue Grafton
2. Deep Pockets (Carlotta Carlyle #10) by Linda Barnes

September – Humour (Level 2: Frequent Reader – 2 books):
1. Three Men on the Bummel by Jerome K. Jerome
2. Roadkill (Kinky Friedman #10) by Kinky Friedman

RMFAO 2015 Series Challenge

Again this quarter, the same as Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015 below.

Yvonne2015

What An Animal Reading Challenge VIII 2015

Level 2: Read 7 – 12

6. Fever Season (Benjamin January #2) by Barbara Hambly

Cruisin’ Thru the Cozies Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Sleuth Extraordinaire – Read 20 or more

13. U is for Undertow (Kinsey Millhone #21) by Sue Grafton
14. A Royal Pain (Royal Spyness #2) by Rhys Bowen
15. Deep Pockets (Carlotta Carlyle #10) by Linda Barnes
16. Real Murders (Aurora Teagarden #1) by Charlaine Harris

Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Expert series reader – Complete 4 or more series. During this quarter, I only read one of the eleven remaining on the list as of June 30, leaving ten to be read during the last quarter of 2015.

KINSEY MILLHONE series by Sue Grafton
21. U is for Undertow

Riedel2015Mystery

My Kind Of Mystery
February 1, 2015 – January 31, 2016

Level 5: Invisible Floor 41 or more:

26. Fever Season by Barbara Hambly
27. The Overlook by Michael Connelly
28. U is for Undertow by Sue Grafton
29. A Royal Pain by Rhys Bowen
30. Deep Pockets by Linda Barnes
31. Real Murders by Charlaine Harris
32. Graveyard Dust by Barbara Hambly

GoodReads2015

My 2015 Goodreads Challenge is one hundred books. As of September 30, I have finished seventy-six books.

Wyllard’s Weird by Mary Elizabeth Braddon

Wyllard’s Weird
by Mary Elizabeth Braddon

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FirstChapFirstPara

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

There are some travellers who think when they cross the Tamar, over that fairy bridge of Brunel’s, hung aloft between the blue of the river and the blue of the sky, that they have left England behind them on the eastern shore–that they have entered a new country, almost a new world. This land of quiet woods and lonely valleys, and bold brown hills, barren, solitary–these wild commons and large moorlands of Cornwall seem to stand apart, as they did in the days gone by, when this province was verily a kingdom, complete in itself, and owning no sovereignty but its own.

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TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

At this point, said the report, the child again became hysterical, and had to be carried away. After this she had an attack of brain-fever, and could not again be interrogated formally.

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This book has taken over my life! Wyllard’s Weird is a 19th Century three-volume sensation novel which Cheryl found at the Internet Archives. Thanks, Cheryl! She also discovered that another meaning of weird refers to a person’s destiny. I am proofing reading it for Free Literature and it will be available at Project Gutenberg in numerous formats. This means I can’t just fly through the reading for fear of missing too many OCR errors. But it became very exciting and intriguing to me about halfway through the first volume and it is hard to keep making myself slow down.

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What are you currently reading? Do you have anything to share with us?

20 Books of Summer 2015 Shake Up

20 Books of Summer 2015 is hosted by Cathy at 746 Books. It began June 1 and runs until September 4, just over thirteen weeks.

20BooksSummer

Does anything ever go precisely as planned? Why do we even have expectations? Things change, unexpected events occur, books get chosen as group reads and there goes the original list of 20 books to read this summer.

Hooray! Cathy at 746 Books said we could revise our list without feeling guilty. Thank you, Cathy!

At this point I have read twelve from my original list:
1. Among the Tibetans by Isabella L. Bird
2. Explosive Eighteen (Stephanie Plum #18) by Janet Evanovich
3. Deadlocked (Sookie Stackhouse #12) by Charlaine Harris
4. George Washington’s Secret Six by Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger
5. Her Royal Spyness (Her Royal Spyness #1) by Rhys Bowen
6. The Assassin in the Marais (Victor Legris #4) by Claude Izner
7. The Kreutzer Sonata by Leo Tolstoi
8. Fever Season (Benjamin January #2) by Barbara Hambly
9. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
10. Rameau’s Nephew by Denis Diderot
11. The Gambler by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
12. The Overlook (Harry Bosch #13) by Michael Connelly

I am now adding five books which I have also completed (and why they shoved their way to the front of the queue):
13. Afloat by Guy de Maupassant (proofread for Free Literature and Project Gutenberg)
14. Frozen (Heart of Dread #1) by Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston (read for July Dystopian/Apocalyptic Genre Challenge at RMFAO)
15. The Magician by Somerset Maugham (group read at the 19th Century Literature group)
16. The Nemesis of Fire by Algernon Blackwood (group read at the Nutshell Cubbyhole)
17. Fifteen Hundred Miles an Hour by Charles Dixon (proofread for Free Literature and Project Gutenberg)

Two unexpected additions which are currently in progress:
Ourika by Claire de Duras (current group read at the French Literature group)
The Morgesons by Elizabeth Stoddard (current group read at the 19th Century Literature group)

And finally, at long last, another book from the original list of 20 which I am currently reading:
U is for Undertow (Kinsey Milhone #21) by Sue Grafton

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How has your summer/winter been going? If you are participating in the 20 Books of Summer 2015 Challenge, are you on track?

Friday Finds – July 31, 2015

SnoopySpyGlassFF

Friday Finds is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm to showcase books you recently found and added to your TBR list. It doesn’t matter whether you found them free online, borrowed them from a library or purchased them. Anything and everything works.

My Finds for the month of July include a modern classic, a non-fiction and four series mysteries. A nice haul!

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Justine
(Book One of the Alexandria Quartet)
by Laurence Durrell

Justine

I’ve known about and considered reading the Alexandra Quartet for a number of years. When I saw it on Fred’s Desert Island list earlier this month, I knew the time had come. Thanks, Fred!

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Places
The Journey of My Days, My Lives
by Thaao Penghlis

ThaaoPlaces

Having enjoyed watching Thaao Penghlis on General Hospital and Days of Our Lives, I’ve been looking forward to the paperback publication of Places. Thaao Penghlis has also been in a number of movies, including portraying a fascinating character in one of my favorite movies, Altered States.

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Now for the series mysteries:

FourMysterySeries

The Blood of an Englishman (Agatha Raisin #25) by M C Beaton – a tried and true series for me which I have been following for years.

The Twelve Clues of Christmas (Royal Spyness #6) and Heirs and Graces (Royal Spyness #7) by Rhys Bowen – a new series I put off reading, finally tried thanks to Selah at A Bibliophile’s Style and now love.

Dead Water (Benjamin January #8) by Barbara Hambly – I first heard of Barbara Hambly through her Star Trek novels and am now hooked on her historical mystery series set in New Orleans.

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Share your Finds with us! We’d love to know if you found anything exciting this week.

1500 Miles an Hour: A Story of a Visit to the Planet Mars – Charles Dixon & Arthur Layard 1895

1500Ship

Sounds interesting!

The Somnium Project

Among the one million book images the British Library have released on Flickr are a set of fantastic illustrations by Arthur Layard from 1500 MILES AN HOUR, an early “scientific romance” by author Charles Dixon. The novel features a manned space flight from the earth to Mars and was published in London in 1895, two years before THE WAR OF THE WORLDS featured a Martian invasion in the other direction. In 1896, a brief review of 1500 MILES in London’s Spectator magazine compared the story to the scientific romances of Verne and Poe, but scoffed at the idea of going to Mars:

“Mr. Dixon’s narrative is serious, as far as journeys to Mars and such things can be serious. We must own to a preference for having the marvellous kept within terrestrial limits.”

1500 MILES AN HOUR(66MB pdf) is the story of 4 men and a dog who…

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Reading Challenges – 2nd Quarter 2015

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ReadingMyLibrary

First is the #ReadingMyLibrary Challenge which ran during the month of April in celebration of National Library Week. It was hosted by Stefani at Caught Read Handed and Amy at Read What I Like.

I read the following four library books in April for a savings of almost $100:
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J K Rowling
Dead in the Family (Sookie Stackhouse #10) by Charlaine Harris
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
Looking for Peyton Place by Barbara Delinsky (audio book)

Remember – libraries are for all year, not just one month!

20BooksSummer

20 Books of Summer

A new Reading Challenge added this quarter is 20 Books of Summer 2015 which runs from June 1 through September 4. It is hosted by Cathy at 746 Books. My complete list is on my original post.

I am right on schedule, having finished these seven books in June:
1. Among the Tibetans by Isabella L. Bird
2. Explosive Eighteen (Stephanie Plum #18) by Janet Evanovich
3. Deadlocked (Sookie Stackhouse #12) by Charlaine Harris
4. George Washington’s Secret Six by Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger
5. Her Royal Spyness (Her Royal Spyness #1) by Rhys Bowen
6. The Assassin in the Marais (Victor Legris #4) by Claude Izner
7. The Kreutzer Sonata by Leo Tolstoi

RMFAO2015

RMFAO 2015 Classics Challenge

My goal for this Challenge was Level 5: Professor – 12 or more books. With the addition of twelve books for the quarter, I successfully completed this Challenge. Never fear, I won’t be resting on my laurels but will continue to read Classics for the remaining six months of 2015. My dozen for this quarter were:
9. Calvary by Octave Mirbeau
10. South! The Story of Shackleton’s Last Expedition 1914-1917 by Sir Ernest Shackleton
11. The Little Demon by Feodor Sologub
12. Inca Land by Hiram Bingham
13. The Three Hostages (Richard Hannay #4) by John Buchan
14. Candide by Voltaire
15. Six Months in Mexico by Nellie Bly
16. Novels in Three Lines by Felix Feneon
17. Among the Tibetans by Isabella L. Bird
18. The Black Sheep/La Rabouilleuse by Honore de Balzac
19. The Kreutzer Sonata by Leo Tolstoi
20. Afloat by Guy de Maupassant

RMFAO 2015 Genre Challenge

Still my favorite Reading Challenge this year! With a different genre each month, I am reading books I never would have read otherwise. A different level can be chosen for each month. My stats for the second quarter of 2015:

April – Young Adult (Level 2: Frequent Reader – 2 books):
1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J K Rowling
2. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

May – Classics/Literary (Level 5: Bookiopath – 5 books or more):
1. South! The Story of Shackleton’s Last Expedition 1914-1917 by Sir Ernest Shackleton
2. The Discovery of the Tomb of Tutankhamen by Howard Carter and A.C. Mace
3. Inca Land by Hiram Bingham
4. The Three Hostages by John Buchan
5. Candide by Voltaire
6. Six Months in Mexico by Nellie Bly
7. Novels in Three Lines by Felix Feneon

June – Non-Fiction (Level 3: Bookworm – 3 books):
1. Among the Tibetans by Isabella L. Bird
2. George Washington’s Secret Six by Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger
3. Afloat by Guy de Maupassant

RMFAO 2015 Series Challenge

This is the same as Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015 below.

Yvonne2015

What An Animal Reading Challenge VIII 2015

Level 2: Read 7 – 12
4. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J K Rowling (animals on the cover)
5. Deadlocked (Sookie Stackhouse #12) by Charlaine Harris (animals on the cover)

Cruisin’ Thru the Cozies Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Sleuth Extraordinaire – Read 20 or more
5. Finger Lickin’ Fifteen (Stephanie Plum #15) by Janet Evanovich
6. Dead Midnight (Sharon McCone #21) by Marcia Muller
7. Sizzling Sixteen (Stephanie Plum #16) by Janet Evanovich
8. Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen #1) by Joanne Fluke
9. Smokin’ Seventeen (Stephanie Plum #17) by Janet Evanovich
10. Strawberry Shortcake Murder (Hannah Swensen #2) by Joanne Fluke
11. Explosive Eighteen (Stephanie Plum #18) by Janet Evanovich
12. Her Royal Spyness (Royal Spyness #1) by Rhys Bowen

Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Expert series reader – Complete 4 or more series. During this quarter, I read six of the remaining seventeen on the list as of March 31, leaving eleven to be read during the last half of 2015.

ALIEN NATION series (various authors)
5. Slag Like Me by Barry B Longyear

RICHARD HANNAY series by John Buchan
4. The Three Hostages

KINSEY MILLHONE series by Sue Grafton

STEPHANIE PLUM by Janet Evanovich
15. Finger Lickin’ Fifteen
16. Sizzling Sixteen
17. Smokin’ Seventeen
18. Explosive Eighteen

Riedel2015Mystery

My Kind Of Mystery
February 1, 2015 – January 31, 2016

Level 5: Invisible Floor 41 or more:
11. Echo Park by Michael Connelly
12. Dead in the Family by Charlaine Harris
13. Finger Lickin’ Fifteen by Janet Evanovich
14. Slag Like Me by Barry B Longyear
15. Dead Midnight by Marcia Muller
16. Sizzling Sixteen by Janet Evanovich
17. Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder by Joanne Fluke
18. Smokin’ Seventeen by Janet Evanovich
19. Strawberry Shortcake Murder by Joanne Fluke
20. The Three Hostages by John Buchan
21. Dead Reckoning by Charlaine Harris
22. Explosive Eighteen by Janet Evanovich
23. Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris
24. Her Royal Spyness by Rhys Bowen
25. The Assassin in the Marais by Claude Izner

GoodReads2015

My 2015 Goodreads Challenge is one hundred books. As of June 30, I have finished fifty-seven books.

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That’s the second quarter report (April – June) for 2015 Reading Challenges in which I am participating. All in all, a good quarter for reading.

20 Books of Summer 2015

Another Reading Challenge! 20 Books of Summer 2015 is hosted by Cathy at 746 Books. It begins June 1 and runs until September 4, just over thirteen weeks.

20BooksSummer

Here’s my list:
Among the Tibetans by Isabella L. Bird
Her Royal Spyness by Rhys Bowen
The Island of Sheep by John Buchan
The Overlook by Michael Connelly
Rameau’s Nephew by Denis Diderot
The Gambler by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Explosive Eighteen by Janet Evanovich
Notorious Nineteen by Janet Evanovich
Road Kill by Kinky Friedman
U is for Undertow by Sue Grafton
Fever Season by Barbara Hambly
Deadlocked by Charlaine Harris
Shakespeare’s Landlord by Charlaine Harris
The Assassin in the Marais by Claude Izner
George Washington’s Secret Six by Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger
The River of Doubt by Candice Millard
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Tomb of the Golden Bird by Elizabeth Peters
Passing Fancy by David Spencer
The Kreutzer Sonata by Leo Tolstoi

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Are you in? There is no set list; we each choose our own books. If twenty is too ambitions, you can opt for 10 Books of Summer 2015.