Showing posts from December, 2019

2019 Reading Challenge Stats

In 2019, I read 23 out of 20 books! And as every year, here are my stats.

First, the last book I finished for this year:

23. Can't Escape Love (Reluctant Royals #2.6) by Alyssa Cole. Fiction/ Romance/Contemporary/Novella. 3 stars.

Out of 23 books total, 5 were nonfiction.

3 were memoirs, two of them historical memoirs about Russian history.
1 was a sociology political book.
1 was a history true crime book about the Osage Nation in the 1920s.

1 was a poetry book.

The rest were fiction:

1 urban fantasy
3 historical mysteries
3 contemporary romances
3 historical romances
1 middle grade fantasy
1 contemporary/historical dual timeline women's fiction
1 picture book
1 YA contemporary
1 classic, an often banned book

And because this can be fun or petty...
Books I didn't finish included 2 books I'd had on my TBR, borrowed from the library, and didn't like.

Also, one book I do want to finish, but my place in the hold list came up at the beginning of December as I was entering…

2019 Reading Challenge Round Up

Well, I have surpassed my 2019 reading goal of 20 books, proving that you can, in fact, read things that are not graduate school related when you are in graduate school.

Here are my final group of books for the year. Stay tuned next week for reading challenge stats!

17. A Prince on Paper (Reluctant Royals # 3) by Alyssa Cole. Romance/Contemporary Romance. 3 stars.

18. The Nordic Theory of Everything: In Search of a Better Life by Anu Partanen. Nonfiction/Politics/Sociology. 3 stars.

19. Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI by David Grann. Nonfiction/History/American History/Native Americans/True Crime. 5 stars.

20. A Soupcon of Poison (Kat Holloway Mysteries #0.5) by Jennifer Ashley. Mystery/Historical fiction/Victorian/Novella. 4 stars.

21.  Lady Chatterley's Lover by D.H. Lawrence. Classics/Literature/Twentieth Century/Banned Books. 3 stars.

22. Cora Cooks Pancit by Dorina K. Lazo Glmore, illustrated by Kristi Valiant. Childrens/Picture book/Foo…

Hey, Whatcha Reading? 5

This month, I asked a writing friend Tonja Drecker, "Hey, whatcha reading?"

1. What books are you currently reading?

Right now, I'm reading Living in a Star's Light (2019, self-published) by Steve Lindahl and Starlight: A Starlight Chronicles Novella (2019, The Parliament House) by J.B. Malcolm. I didn't realize how similar the titles are until I answered this question, but the two stories are nothing alike. The first is historical fiction while the second is a young adult fantasy.

2) How far along in the books are you?
I'm about 40% through Living in a Star's Light  and 20% through Starlight. The first one is around 250 pages, while the second, as a novella, hits around 170. 
3) What are the books about?
Living in a Star's Light is based on the life of actress Lotta Crabtree, a wealthy and famous entertainer during the Gold Rush Era. While I thought it would only be told from Lotta's viewpoint, it's mostly done through the eyes of her biggest fan, …

British Pathé

I'm a nerd, so sometimes I go to YouTube, type in "Pathé," and off I go.

Pathé was a newsreel company--so basically, they would shoot important people or events and those clips would be shown before films would start at the movies. I like British Pathé because the narration is in English and because these films are from the early-to-mid twentieth century, the level of Clipped BBC Heightened RP accent borders on the comical.

One of the actors on The Crown, whose third season I recently finished watching, mentioned that their dialect coach (because nobody talks in the way the royal family does) told them that when they say "yes," they should try to pronounce it like "ears" with a slow English accent where you don't move your jaw much.

Anyway, because it's interesting to see how events were reported back in the day, here are some Pathé reels:

Think about it: the Romanovs were killed in 1918. While there are a lot of portraits and photographs of t…

Code Switching

I think it was last week (time moves differently when you're in grad school). I was on the subway on the way to one of my classes, listening to a podcast which was an interview with Lin-Manuel Miranda.

Y'all know how I feel about Hamilton and Lin's Twitter feed.

If I ever run into him somewhere in Manhattan, I'll either be in complete shock or talk to him as if I know him, which will be awkward.

I digress.

During this podcast interview, Lin mentioned the early code-switching that he experienced as a child. As he put it--I'm paraphrasing--"I was Lin-Manuel--in Spanish--at home in upper Manhattan and I was just Lin at school on the Upper East Side."

Code-switching is defined as the practice of alternating between two or more languages or varieties of language in conversation. In Lin's case, he spoke English and Spanish at home, but at school, it was definitely English.

Most of us code-switch in some way, whether it's our vocabulary or tone or level …