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Month in review

An Acquaintance with Darkness by Ann Rinaldi
Animal Kisses by Barney Saltzberg
The Bunnies' Counting Book by Elizabeth B. Rogers
California Girl by T. Jefferson Parker
Daddy and Me by Neil Ricklen
Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems
Don't Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late by Mo Willems
Encyclopedia Brown Finds the Clues by Donald Sobol
Encyclopedia Brown Keeps the Peace by Donald Sobol
Encyclopedia Brown Strikes Again by Donald Sobol
The Gashlycrumb Tinies by Edward Gorey
The Little Green Caterpillar by Yvonne Hooker
Little Lost Puppy by Margaret Glover Otto
Measure for Measure by William Shakespeare
Mouse Tales by Arnold Lobel
My Little Opposites Book by Bob Staake
Number 9 by Wallace Wadsworth
On the Night of the Seventh Moon by Victoria Holt
Picture Me Colors by Deborah D'Andrea and Kaycee Hoffman
Picture Me Numbers by Deborah D'Andrea and Kaycee Hoffman
The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog by Mo Willems
Pokémon 2000 by Tracey West
Russell and the Lost Treasure by Rob Scotton
Russell the Sheep by Rob Scotton
Slide 'N' Seek Shapes by Chuck Murphy
The Spider King by Lawrence Schoonover
The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin
The Straw Men by Michael Marshall
The Tokaido Road by Lucia St Clair Robson
The Top of the World by Ethel M. Dell
Watch Me Grow Kitten by DK Books

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Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

Canadian Book Challenge: 2019-2020

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Comments for The Spider King

The Spider KingThe Spider King: 12/11/06

At the start of this year I joined a BookCrossing challenge to read and release books I had gotten from other members. For them to count towards the challenge I would have to read the entire book. So far this year I've been really good about finishing books I've started. Regular readers of this site (or feed) will know that I've also taken to posting a review for every book I've read.

The Spider King is one of those exceptions to the rule. I gave up on it after only 45 pages of about 300. It's a "biographical novel" of Louis XI but I didn't manage to stick with the book long enough to actually learn anything new about Louis XI.

I knew I was in trouble when I reached chapter two. It was nothing more than an incredibly flowery list of Louis's ancestors, visiting as ghosts as the prince is being born. It was a ham fisted way of introducing a character and the concept of the "divine right of kings."

From there the book went on some sort of long winded tangent involving the war with England, various nobles and a child's birth keep secret from his own mother. It didn't help that the book kept throwing characters into the story without any sort of introduction; a dramatis personae or a family tree would have been useful. So after a week of having managed to read all sorts of other books rather than this "biographical novel" I decided to set it aside.

SeanGratitude #11: Funny Seanisms:

Sean's at the age now that he's learning dozens of new things every day. He's a fully active participant in our family and loves to add his in put to whatever we're doing or planning. He's also starting to pick up all the different things we tell him and use them to define the world as he sees it.

Last night, for example, while he was putting on his pajamas I read some poetry to pass the time. He saw me reading and asked to see what it was. I showed him the book and even read some out loud for him. He smiled and told me: "You have a grown up mouth with lots of teeth so you have to read grown up poetry. I have a small mouth with baby teeth so I have to read small poetry like Dr. Seuss." The teeth thing comes from us explaining that in a year or two he'll start to lose his baby teeth but I'm not sure how one's number of teeth relates to what type of poetry one can read!

Another thing he's picked up from me is how to make a bargain. Now whenever he wants to make a trade (usually along the lines of he wants me to give him something special with very little effort on his part), he'll start off with: "I'll tell you what..."


Steps: 5000

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