Sentence of the Day: THE ROMANOVS, 1613 – 1911, p. 86

Self is now on p. 86. There have been many great individual sentences.

Nevertheless, she must get a move on.

It is extremely cold here in the San Francisco Bay Area, and she needs to exit the house tonight, to pick up someone from SFO. Lacking a parka, she must layer. Not only must she layer, she must wear her UGG boots, which Marie Claire told her years ago was only suitable for under 30s. She hopes she doesn’t encounter people with rheumy coughs, as she did yesterday at Walmart. She wanted to run screaming out of the store, but she was stuck in line and had no choice but to stiff-upper-lip it.

Here’s the Sentence of the Day:

The Jolly Company were toasting the trip at Lefort’s palace when, as General Gordon wrote, a “merry night” was ruined by “the accident of discovering treason against His Majesty.”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

THE ROMANOVS, 1613-1918, p. 52

Hugely enjoying this massive tome, so much so that self took it with her to Black Panther, and kept reading until the theater lights went down.

Chapter on Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich, also known as the “Young Monk” :

Meschersky found the chief armourer Bogdan Khitrovo, nicknamed the “Whispering Favourite,” guarding the Red Staircase, brandishing his jewel-encrusted staff of office to hold back importuning crowds. He punched Meschersky.

“You shouldn’t strike me — I’m here on duty.”

“Who are you?” asked Khitrovo, who knew perfectly well.

“The patriarch’s servitor.”

“Don’t make so much of yourself. Why should we respect the patriarch?” and with that he smashed him on the head with his baton, sending him bleeding back to Nikon.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Next on the Reading List: The Romanovs, 1613 – 1918, by Simon Sebag-Montefiore

This book weighs like a brick and, since self always lugs her books around with her, she’s going to have a sore wrist in a few weeks, she just knows it.

It’s about the Romanovs but it might as well be about U.S. politics.

page xxi of the Introduction:

  • In this book, my aim is to follow the invisible, mysterious alchemy of power to answer the essential question of politics, laconically expressed by that maestro of powerplay, Lenin: kto kogo? — who controls whom?

Love the full-color plates. Michael, the first Romanov tsar, looks like a hunchbacked troll. Catherine I used to be a “promiscuous Lithuanian peasant girl.” Peter II “fell ill” on “the day of his planned marriage.” The Empress Anna forced her courtiers “to pretend to be chickens.” And so forth.

Since this is such a behemoth of a book, might take the rest of February and most of March.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

Sentence of the Day: HILLBILLY ELEGY

p. 177: “. . .  whenever people ask me what I’d most like to change about the white working class, I say, ‘The feeling that our choices don’t matter.’ “

Sentence of the Day: J. D. Vance

Self has decided to tackle Hillbilly Elegy. Even though she’s not sure she can relate. Makati being as far as one can imagine from the Appalachias.

p. 15: Even knowing what a pistol-packing lunatic Mamaw was, I find this story hard to believe.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Pope John XXIII: JOURNAL OF A SOUL

  • As for women, and everything to do with them, never a word, never; it was as if there were no women in the world. This absolute silence, even between close friends, about everything to do with women was one of the most profound and lasting lessons of my early years in the priesthood. — from p. 185 of Robert Harris’s thriller (about the election of a new Pope), Conclave

The MP (or main protagonist) is reading. Since he is a Cardinal, he reads religious stuff. Like Pope John XXIII’s writings.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Vicente Benitez, (Filipino) Archbishop of Baghdad

Self is now at a point in Conclave where a vote is taken for a new Pope. And it reads just like Survivor. She means: everyone rising, one by one, to cast their secret ballots.

Vicente Benitez, the newest Cardinal, previously assigned to a country in Africa (self too lazy to look up exactly which country right now), casts his ballot on p. 157. Props to author Robert Harris for getting self to read this far on a topic she never thought she’d be interested in.

The MP’s inner monologue:

The Filipino had an attractive quality, he thought, not easy to define, an inner grace. Now that he was becoming better known, he might go far.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

2nd Banana Yoshimoto Sentence of the Day

If life is a process of accumulating more and more things you simply can’t bring yourself to make peace with, well, my feelings about this are vast and deep enough for an entire lifetime’s worth of hang-ups.

— p. 4, Moshi Moshi

Despite the fact that self did not make her reading goal of 30 books in 2017 (She got to 26), she signed up again for the Goodreads Reading Challenge, and upped the ante: 35 books to read in 2018.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

#amreading: Tana French, THE TRESPASSER, p. 425

SPOILER ALERT

Detective Breslin to Detective Conway: I spent twenty minutes sitting in the Top House before the penny dropped. Fair play to you, Conway: you make a very convincing South Dublin airhead.

#amreading THE TRESPASSER, p. 311

Suspense just kicked up a notch!

Self is beginning to realize this about her response to a Tana French book: her level of enjoyment depends on how engaging she finds the main protagonist’s partner.

In Broken Harbor, self was really taken by Mick “Scorcher” Kennedy’s rookie partner, Richie Curran. To a lesser extent, she was also taken by Scorcher’s mad sister, Dina.

In The Trespasser, there was absolutely no one self could relate to, not until the main protagonist’s partner, Steve, began to acquire fairly duplicitous shadings. Then, the tension ratcheted up. Waaaay up.

Excellent. It’s a very cold and blustery Paris evening, perfect for cocooning with a book.

Kudos to Ms. French for p. 312 also.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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