Sunday, July 30, 2023

The Sunday Post #338

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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 #338

On The Blog Recently

In My Reading Life

My reading week got off to a difficult start. I gave up on Foundation by Isaac Asimov because I got bored. It had such a good start! It's science fiction about a dude who invents a way to predict the future. He discovers that a multi-planet empire is going to collapse and plunge humanity into a dark age. In an effort to preserve humanity's knowledge, he gathers the brightest minds in the universe and invents Wikipedia. It's a fascinating premise, but the execution is unbearably boring. The book is mostly just a bunch of one-dimensional characters talking about stuff. I couldn't take it anymore.

Luckily, A Game Of Fox & Squirrels by Jenn Reese was a much better reading experience. This is a middle grade novel about two sisters who are sent to live with their aunt in rural Oregon. As a welcome gift, the aunt gives the younger sister a card game about foxes and squirrels. Things get complicated for the sisters when characters from the game start coming to life and wreaking havoc.

I have a massive amount of respect for this novel because it handles a terrifying topic in a way that children can understand. The fox and squirrels are obviously stand-ins for abusers and the people (or squirrels) they abuse, but the abuse is shown in non-gratuitous ways. The human characters learn to spot the signs of abuse and stand up for themselves.

Unfortunately, there are kids in the world who really need this book. They're living in dangerous situations and are afraid to ask for help. This novel could be comforting to them. The author shows how abusers can be scary and charming at the same time. She also shows that life can get better once the abuser is gone. The book tackles a dark subject, but it leaves the reader with hope.

Like many middle grade books, this one is heavy handed with its morals, but don't let that stop you from reading it. There should be a copy of A Game Of Fox & Squirrels in every middle school library.

Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan is hard to describe. It's young adult fiction about two boys who want to break the world record for the longest kiss. Their story is narrated by a Greek chorus of ghosts who died from AIDS.

Weird, I know. That's the whole reason I wanted to read it.

Honestly, it was really hard for me to stay interested in this book at first. The writing style struck me as pretentious and rambling, and the ghosts put an extra layer of distance between the characters and the reader. I considered giving up on it.

Once I got used to the narration style, I started to appreciate what the author was doing. Teenagers live in the moment, but ghosts are able to see the past and the future. The ghosts talk about how the world has changed for gay men. When they were alive, there's no way that two boys would have been allowed to kiss in public. Now two boys are attempting to set a world record. At one point during the world-record attempt, homophobes show up to protest the kiss. This is upsetting for the teenage characters, but the ghosts know that life will get better. There are reasons to be hopeful.

In the end, I really liked the contrast between emotional, impulsive teenagers and thoughtful ghosts. We're all part of history, even if we don't realize it right now. What kind of history do you want to create?


Five things that made me happy recently:

  1. I worked so much overtime that I was forced to take a 3-day "weekend." It wasn't really a weekend because there's no way I'd get Saturday or Sunday off, but it was still glorious.
  2. Who watched Nimona on Netflix? I love everything about it and really want to reread the book. The movie is hilarious and has a great message.
  3. I saw a zombie car. It was a green car with hundreds of zombie stickers all over it. I have no idea why someone would create this monstrosity, but I approve.
  4. I ordered a chicken burrito from Qdoba, but when it arrived, the meat wasn't chicken. It was steak. I got fancy meat for the price of non-fancy meat! I think I won at life.
  5. My supervisor at work is an awesome human who let me tag along on a fishing adventure. Here's a pretty little fish he caught. He put it back in the water after I took the photo.


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



  1. I love that you have a great supervisor at work! Fishing sounds like a great day. :)

  2. Cute little fish. Reminds me of my little brother a long long time ago.
    best, mae at

  3. A Game of Fox and Squirrels does sound like an important read and will hopefully help many children caught in this tragic situation. Thanks for sharing about it.

  4. The middle school book sounds good! I'll have to make sure our middle school librarians know about it. Cute fish. I haven't been fishing in so long! Have a good week!
    Lisa Loves Literature

  5. It's sad to give up on a book, isn't it? But it really can be liberating, sometimes. Both of the next books seem really interesting and really brave. Thanks for highlighting them.

  6. Glad you were able to enjoy three days in a row off. Sounds like they were well earned. I got worried at first when you were telling the Qdoba story. What if you didn't like steak? But since you do - winning! *applause, applause* for your big catch.

  7. "invents Wikipedia" lol. Yeah, I got so bored with Foundation when I was younger and I couldn't finish them either.

    What a cute fish!

  8. Score on the steak instead of chicken, LOL! Sometimes it's the little things, isn't it?! I hope you have a great week.

  9. Awww...very cute fish. I hate when a book starts out so good and then it's a bust. I'm glad you were able to get three days off. Hope you have a great week!

  10. A three-day weekend sounds wonderful and it doesn't really matter what days it covers. Two Boys Kissing sounds interesting; Levithan is a good YA author.

  11. Aw I read Foundation like probably 40 years ago. I have them all in paperback - still. I liked them. Yay for some time off and steak.

    Anne - Books of My Heart

  12. I read the first two Foundation novellas during my college years. Not as class reading, but to discuss with my Sci-Fi nerdy friends. Ha ha. I loved them. A lot of classic Sci-Fi can be dry and subject oriented. I'm weird and I like that. Thanks for reminding me that at one time I was going to finish up the rest of the series during vintage Sci-Fi Month. 🙂

    A Game of Fox and Squirrel sounds intriguing I will add it to Goodreads. 📙

    Two Boys Kissing has been on my TBR forever. I need to read it. 📘

    I still have to read Nimona. It's been sitting on my Kindle from shortly after it published. 😯

    Have a wonderful new week. ☀

  13. You definitely scored big on that steak burrito!

    Maybe that's why I haven't gone car shopping yet. First I had to learn about the existence of Zombie cars!

  14. That little fish is cute. Back to live another day. A zombie car? Only in Colorado ... or perhaps Alberta Lol.

  15. Three days off in a row is a good thing no matter which days. Still relaxing and gives time to catch up on 'things'. I also couldn't get thru Foundation - I clicked through to your posts about 1 word titles and found a couple new to me options. Fun idea.
    Have a terrific week!
    Terrie @ Bookshelf Journeys

  16. Foundation does sound like an interesting premise. Sorry to hear it didn't deliver. It's unfortunate that we need books like A Game of Fox and Squirrels, but I'm happy to hear it could be an effective tool against abuse. Yay for getting 3 days off! I'm sure it was nice after working a bunch of overtime.

  17. I am glad that you got three days off in a row! Always good to have some downtime!

  18. I barely made my way through Foundation a long time ago. I had to keep telling myself, You've got to keep reading...this is an important book in the scifi world. Never loved it.

    I will look for Nimona. Thanks for recommending it.

  19. Foundation was a Kindle Daily Deal this week and I bought it. I remember reading it years and years ago. I hope I have a better experience with it than you did. I love your list of things that made you happy. It's the little things that matter. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

  20. When I was working, I used to love having days off in the middle of the week. When it did happen, it was just one day, but it broke up the work week nicely for me. Have a great week! :-)

  21. Congrats for time off but not for how you earned it. I think I want a zombie car. I really should watch Nimona soon.

  22. I can't think of a better idol than Kermit the Frog! The zombie car sounds like absolute madness but in a fun way. I don't think I've ever seen anything like that but I've seen a few vehicle choices that made me want to know the story. Nonweekend weekends are my favorite! Anytime I have to run errands on weekends I get seriously annoyed by how crowded everything is! I hope you're having a great week!

  23. I thought I had read some Asimov but I just checked GoodReads and I haven't. I think I have him confused with Bradbury. Is that sacrilegious in science fiction circles? I'm just not a huge fan.

    Yay for 3 days off! My husband volunteered to take all weekend shifts at one of his work assignments since I'm not working while we're traveling. We got to visit everywhere we wanted to go on less-crowded weekdays. Score! Enjoy your week!