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Locus Amoenus: All By My Shelf

Watch the amazing Locus juggle several books at once, and try not to drop any! Free admission.

Professional Reader

Currently reading

One Corpse Too Many (The Chronicles of Brother Cadfael Book 2)
Ellis Peters
Progress: 20%
Shameless: A Sexual Reformation
Nadia Bolz-Weber
House of Leaves
Mark Z. Danielewski

Reading progress update: I've read 20 out of 246 pages.

Warlight - Michael Ondaatje

I decided to look through my library's Overdrive catalogue for a pre-Bingo read, and the description for this one looked fascinating. I read The English Patient a long time ago (around the same time the movie came out), and remember liking the style quite a bit.

Final Thoughts: Son de mar

Son de Mar - Manuel Vicent

The most astounding parts of this story come in the second half, once Ulises has resurfaced and Martina becomes a completely different person. I realized, at that point, that the true hero's journey is hers as she works to make long-lost dreams come true. She is Circe, and Penelope, and Odysseus too (she has always lived through Ulises' stories). It doesn't matter whether or not Ulises is who he seems to be (and that question is answered - or not - at the end); he is what she needs him to be, and that's what matters.


I loved this book. It's one of those stories that creeps up on you, until you realize you're truly drowning in this world, these surreal scenes and images, and the very real feelings presented in this fable-like story. The descriptions of local sights, sounds, and smells were some of my favorite parts, since it's a part of the country I know fairly well (my parents live along that coast).

Halloween Bingo: I think I found the book for my Shifters square

The Wolf's Hour - Robert R. McCammon

I was going to read Fool Moon by Butcher, but it's the second in a series and I don't have time to read the first one before Bingo time (though I really do want to read that series soon!).


So I went looking through Goodreads Listopia, and it was hard to find something that was not part of a series. Apparently, standalone books are hard to find these days!


This one looks great, though. It's the first in a series, which I can live with, and is not the typical paranormal romance (I do like that genre, but there's a lot of saturation in that field and I wanted something different).


Lastly, I see a couple of friends here have read and liked it, which is a great reason to pick it up.

Reading progress update: I've read 92 out of 240 pages.

Son de Mar - Manuel Vicent

I love the emphasis on storytelling: why stories are told over and over, and why/how they evolve with each retelling. And in that sense, the classical stories that Ulises reads and teaches are no different from the ones told by the sailors in the tavern. In fact, at one point it's mentioned that Ulises is starting to prefer the fishermen's stories, while Martina is becoming more interested in the mythological tales.

Are These Still Around?

Chris' Fish Place sent me some lovely ALA bookmarks for Halloween Bingo, and we started chatting about the wonderful posters, especially this one:



I remember that one hanging in my high school library. Mind you, I didn't need any special incentive to read (I basically lived in that library), but the poster definitely didn't hurt. :D


It's been many years since I lived in the U.S. (I left after high school), so I don't know if these are even still a thing. But it's a nice bit of nostalgia for me, so I thought I'd share.

Reading progress update: I've read 48 out of 240 pages.

Son de Mar - Manuel Vicent

The Yul Brynner film mentioned as being filmed in the fictional town of Circea seems to be The Light at the Edge of the World. It was filmed in various locations in Spain, including Xàbia /Jávea, a fishing/vacation town in the province of Alicante. So now we know what Circea is supposed to look and feel like.




Reading progress update: I've read 17 out of 240 pages.

Son de Mar - Manuel Vicent Desfile de ciervos - Manuel Vicent

Interesting tidbit:


At the start of the novel, the judge at the nudist beach is reading a murder report concerning a man - an influential businessman specializing in construction - who has been shot and dumped into a river inside a bag. The description of the man and mode of murder matches one of the characters in Vicent's later novel, Desfile de ciervos.

Halloween Bingo: Does this work for the Doomsday square?

The Necessary Beggar - Susan Palwick

This is the Tor freebie novel for this month, and it looks like it could work for Doomsday. Thoughts?

Halloween Bingo Pre-Party: Halloween Bingo Reading Snacks and Drinks




I don't normally eat while I'm reading (unless I'm reading through my lunchtime), but I do always have some hot tea at hand (caffeinated or herbal, depending on the time of day).


My favorite place to order tea is The Tea Haus, a Canadian company with some great seasonal selections. I'll be ordering some themed teas from them for the bingo:


- Apple Spice

- Pumpkin Spice

- Fireside Blend

- Cinnamon Almond

- Creme Caramel




Creme Caramel

Is This Considered Suspense? (Question for Halloween Bingo Square)

The Girl on the Train - Paula Hawkins

I don't read a lot of suspense, so I don't know exactly what qualifies. I know this book has been popular, and the premise looks interesting.

Halloween Bingo Squares: Cozy Mystery

Hooked on Murder - Betty Hechtman

I've had this book on my e-reader forever, and I think it will do nicely for the Cozy Mystery square.

Reading progress update: I've read 1 out of 293 pages.

Still Life - Louise Penny

Ok, change of plans. I'm actually going to read this one as part of the Bingo, since I had to shuffle some squares around. I'll keep it on my "currently reading list" and adjust the dates once I start reading.

The First Halloween Bingo Bookmarks Are on their Way!


As I mentioned the other day, I'm making Halloween Bingo lace bookmarks for any participants interested. If you have your Bingo card and would like a bookmark, just send me a message letting me know where to send it. These two are making their way out to two participants today!

Reading progress update: I've read 1 out of 322 pages.

Storm Front - Jim Butcher

This is another book that I'm reading now because I'm putting the second volume (Fool Moon) on my Halloween Bingo card (for the Shifters square).


Also, I'd heard many great things about the Dresden Files, so I figured this was a good time to start.

Reading progress update: I've read 1 out of 293 pages.

Still Life - Louise Penny

I'm reading this one now because I want to read the second book in the series (Fatal Grace) for the Stone Cold Horror square of Halloween Bingo.


Also, I'd been meaning to read this series, since it takes place in the province where I live (Quebec).

Halloween Bingo Suggestion Needed: New Release?

I was going to read Melmoth by Sarah Perry, since it's been on my pile for some time, but alas it's a week too old to qualify! (my paperback copy was published October 23, 2018).


So I'm looking for a replacement, either horror or mystery. What books published after last Halloween have knocked your socks off?