Sunday, February 13, 2022

The Sunday Post #294


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The Sunday Post is a chance to recap the past week, talk about next week, tell you what I’m reading, and share news. It’s hosted by The Caffeinated Book ReviewerReaderbuzz, and Book Date.

The Sunday Post #294

On The Blog Last Week

On The Blog This Week

  • On Tuesday I attempt to talk about books that left me speechless.

In My Reading Life

Maybe it was a bad idea to read all the giant historical fiction books on my shelf. I feel like I'm spending a lot of time reading, but I'm not making a dent in the shelf. How did I acquire so many giant historical fiction books?

Last week, I finished The Fountains Of Silence by Ruta Sepetys. I've read almost all of Ruta Sepetys's books and enjoyed every one of them. If I had to rank them, this one would be my least favorite, but it's still a good book! It's set in Spain in 1957 during the rule of dictator General Francisco Franko. The story follows a group of teenagers who have very different lives. One of them is an American tourist and photographer who wants to learn about his mother's home country. The other characters live in Spain and are struggling to survive in a dictatorship. Their lives collide when they all get caught up in an adoption scandal involving kidnapped babies.

I love how the author shows the two sides of Spain. The country relies on tourist dollars, so the government is very concerned with creating a beautiful tourist playground. It's less concerned with the wellbeing of its own citizens. They're living in poverty and doing unethical things to survive.

I vaguely remember learning about the Spanish Civil War in my high school European history class, but I think I learned more from this book than I did in school. That's another thing I love about Ruta Sepetys. She takes little-known bits of history and makes them real. You'll fall in love with these characters. Even though they've had difficult lives, they're still hopeful about their futures.

This book has a steep learning curve. There are a lot of characters, and the author throws you right into the action. I struggled to keep up. I spent about half the book going, Wait, who's that? How are they related? What are they doing? Why am I supposed to care about this person? It took me a long time to feel comfortable with the setting and characters. That's my only criticism. I'll happily pick up whatever Ruta Sepetys writes next.

I'm still reading As Meat Loves Salt by Maria McCann. It's another thick historical fiction book. It's okay so far. I was nervous because people on Goodreads have this book shelved as romance and erotica, which aren't my favorite genres, but I'm halfway through the book, and the romance hasn't started yet. It's mostly about an awful dude who rapes his wife, murders a guy, joins the military, and attempts to control everyone around him. I'm not ready to DNF the book, but it's not really holding my attention. I'm not interested in the preparing-for-military-conflict life.

In The Rest Of My Life

Five things that made me happy last week:

  1. If you're watching the Super Bowl, I hope your team wins, and I hope you have lots of fun. I'm just here for the party snacks. I know nothing about football.
  2. New books! I almost have shelf space for them. That's why I'm reading all the giant books on my shelf. I need to read and donate the big books so I have space for the new books.
  3. Catching up on reality TV. I'm now caught up on The Amazing Race, Catfish, Catfish UK, and Next Level Chef.
  4. I'm still watching Olympic hockey. I'm looking forward to the medal rounds. (I think I just discovered why I'm not making a dent in my TBR shelf. I've been watching too much TV!)
  5. I'm shopping for a new phone because mine is painfully slow. Give me suggestions for which one to buy.

Sometimes I have important thoughts (or important Wordle scores)

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Take care of yourselves and be kind to each other. See you around the blogosphere!


  1. Have you read I Must Betray You, her last one too AJ? I am nearly finished with it and it gives a different vibe from her others.

  2. What a great day to make space on your bookshelf – read those thick books first. I am almost completely out of space and will definitely keep that in mind! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  3. I’ll have to look further into Rita Sepetys with your recommendation

    Wishing you a great reading week

  4. I try to be as quiet as possible when I am among a group of ardent sports fans, randomly throwing out a "Wow!" and an "Oh dear!" when I hear others making similar comments.

    I'd DNF the salt and meat book. You've given it every chance, I think.

    I've always loved my iPhone and the latest version is the best yet. But, to be honest, I've never tried that other brand, and I was always a Honda person until I bought a Toyota, and now I'll never get anything else.

  5. I'm here for the snacks too. And I've been watching a ton of Olympics. Honestly, I don't know why- it's not like I even know these sprts exist when it's not on. Sigh

  6. I'll be rooting for the Rams in the Super Bowl, but also enjoying the snacks!

  7. I used to accept Super Bowl party invites for the food. When we were in Florida, our family friend did a big shebang. She put up a menu for the "Pasta Bowl", and her cooking was incredible. Memories. Hope the snacks are good.

  8. Oh your Wordle comment is the best! I tend to forget every day or so to play. But it is fun. All my books are still in storage and I just keep on buying new ones... What if I don't have enough space in my new shelves!!! Still no idea when they will be finished.

    Superbowl? I know what it is, but obviously here in SA it means nothing to me! But may your favorite team win!

    Have a good week AJ!

    Elza Reads

  9. Welsh mining communities supported the Communists during the Spanish Civil War, and some men even went out to fight - which was illegal, because the British authorities preferred Hitler's pal Franco to the Communists, and banned Brits from fighting out there. There were a lot of food and money collections for Spain here, too. Not that our people were exactly rolling in it, but in my experience it's the people with the least who give the most.


  10. I want to watch the Olympics but the timing just doesn't line up for me.

  11. I'm laughing that you're reading the biggest books on your shelf to make more room. That's a strategy that hadn't occurred to me!

  12. I hate when there are so many characters in a book that I can't keep track of them all but glad the book ended up being worth it and I've heard amazing things about that author. I'm a huge Catfish fan and have been liking Catfish UK though they are terrible investigators! Have a great week!

  13. I once heard someone say if you wanted to make progress with reading start with the shortest books on your shelf so you can see progress being made. I am not watching football, instead I am participating in a read-a-thon :) I picked a short book to read, LOL. I hope you have a great week. Here is my post:

  14. I am glad to hear you enjoyed The Fountains Of Silence. I picked up a copy of it on a whim at Barnes and Nobles one day since it was on sale for $5 at the Starbucks counter. I don't know a lot about the Spanish Civil War, but I do enjoy historical fiction and it sounded good. Good luck choosing a new phone! I have a Pixel which I really like, but I am not overly familiar with what is out there so wouldn't know what is good. I tend to go with the best deal at the time. I hope you have a great week!

  15. I'm not excited about the Super Bowl and I'm pissy it is moving the Olympics out so I have to stay up half the night. I, too, am watching the Olympics rather than reading at night.

    Anne - Books of My Heart This is my Sunday Post

  16. Ok. iPhone 11 pro or better on the phone suggestion.

    I also love Reta Sepetys' books, but Fountains of Silence wasn't my favorite one. I hear she has a new book out (or coming out?)

    I am enjoying the Amazing Race and impressed with how they are keeping them so isolated from the general public.

  17. I'll confess that I didn't even realize there was a Spanish Civil War. So... I guess I need to read this book.

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

  18. I haven't watched a Superbowl Sunday in years, but the last time I did, my favorite part was the snacks. LOL

    Here are my WEEKLY UPDATES

  19. Since I've switched to reading almost exclusively on my Kindle, shelf space is no longer an issue. I am still trying to read two or three print books a month to reduce the physical TBR mountain though. I read during the Super Bowl and just looked up when something exciting happened. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

  20. We started watching Next Level Chef but fell off after two episodes. I wanted to get back into the Amazing Race this year but keep forgetting about it!

  21. I'm so bummed because I've missed almost all of the Olympic hockey. Just a timing thing. I did watch the Super Bowl and was happy the Rams won. Plus snacks. :)

  22. I know nothing about football, but I watched. I didn't really care who won. LOL I haven't watched any of the Olympics.

    I hope you have a great week!

  23. Sometimes I do my own chart to connect people and relationships for fat books, otherwise I forget who's who. Have a great week!

  24. So the Olympic hockey is getting good! I'm torn between countries ... but I always root secretly for the U.S. while in Canada, but the women's Canadian team is also strong. Hopefully I will get to a Ruta novel this year!

  25. One of these days, I will read a Sepetys book. They always sound good, but heavier than I am usually in the mood for (especially during a pandemic.)

    I've seen three schools of thought on clearing (or at least making room on) one's TBR shelf. Reading the fat books makes more room visually, so if most of your books are physical, that's probably a good choice. Reading the shorter books means getting through more books overall, which is good if you're aiming for a challenge like Goodreads or my Backlist Reader Challenge. And first-in-first-out can be good for clearing out older review books. Alas, I'm too much of a mood reader to stick to any system LOL!

  26. I love your Super Bowl quote. Good thing I don't diet and rarely exercise. LOL!

    Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres, but they are all usually monster size. That's why I enjoyed the books I read in The Mayflower Brides series, because they weren't too long.

    Liking my iPhone 12, but that is considered an old model these days. I can't keep up with the ever changing technology.

    Thanks for sharing and for visiting my blog last week.