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Literature Reviews

Josephine Tey: Inspector Grant Series

  Having already read two books from Tey’s Alan Grant series (The Daughter of Time and The Franchise Affair) as well as her nonseries novel Brat Farrar in past years, and Miss Pym Disposes at the beginning of this year, I took the combined (re)read of The Daughter of Time and the play Dickon during the pandemic buddy […]

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Literature Reviews

Agatha Christie / Matthew Pritchard (ed.): The Grand Tour

Letters and Photographs from the British Empire Expedition 1922 Agatha Christie’s letters, photos and postcards from the expedition to South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, and Canada in which her first husband, Archibald, and she were invited to participate out of the blue shortly after the birth of their daughter Rosamund.  Lovingly edited by her […]

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Book Rescue, Book-Related Places of Pilgrimage … and My Personal Literary Canon, Part 1

24 Festive Tasks: Door 7 – Mawlid, Task 2: The Five Pillars of Islam almsgiving and the pilgrimage to Mekka.  Tell us: Have you ever donated books or rescued them from (horror of horrors) being trashed?  Alternatively: Is there a book-related place that is a place of pilgrimage to you? If I donate books, I […]

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Bonn leuchtet — Bonn Shines

24 Festive Tasks: Door 4 – Diwali, Task 1: Share a picture of your favorite light display. “Bonn leuchtet” — “Bonn Shines” — is the name of an annual event in early November during which some of Bonn’s public buildings (and city streets and trees) are colorfully illuminated at night.  Here are a few impressions […]

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Mexican Food

24 Festive Tasks: Door 1 – Día de los Muertos, Task 4: If you like Mexican food, treat yourself to your favorite dish and share a photo of it.   Mini beef tortillas with potato wedges, sourcream, and a dip that’s half salsa and half guacamole. Ordered in, not my own creation … I couldn’t […]

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Hats

24 Festive Tasks: Door 3 – Melbourne Cup Day, Task 2: Cup day is all about the hats. Post a picture of your favorite hat, whether it’s one you own or not. As a general rule, I don’t do hats … or caps, or any other kind of headgear. The sole (occasional) exception being this […]

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CHIO Aachen (2013)

24 Festive Tasks: Door 3 – Melbourne Cup Day, Task 4: Have you ever been to or participated in a competition involving horses (racing, jumping, dressage, whatever)? Tell us about it. Photos welcome, too! The very first equestrian tournament I ever went to as a kid was the Hamburg Derby (see 2019 trailer here), which […]

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William Shakespeare’s Epitaph

24 Festive Tasks: Door 1 – Día de los Muertos, Task 2: Share your favorite gravestone epitaph (you know you have one). To a Shakespeare fan, there can be only one …     Good friend for Jesus’ sake forbeare, To dig the dust enclosed here. Blessed be the man that spares these stones, And […]

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Ethel Lina White: The Lady Vanishes (aka The Wheel Spins) & The Spiral Staircase (aka Some Must Watch)

Well, I can see the appeal to movie directors … … but in written form, this isn’t really my cup of tea.  Which isn’t necessarily the fault of White’s writing is such — she has a fine eye (and ear) for characterization and language — but rather, of her chosen topic.  I’ve never been much […]

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16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Final Tally

The Markers: Stack of Books: Books read       Red Bows and Ribbons: Other Tasks completed Joker cards used:   The Squares, Books and Other Tasks: Square 1: November 1st: All Saints Day / Día de los Muertos & Calan Gaeaf Book themes for Día de Muertos and All Saint’s Day: A book that […]

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Our Traditional New Year’s Eve Dinner: Wieners & Potato Salad

16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 16 – New Year’s Eve / St. Sylvester’s Day Tasks for Hogswatch Night: Make your favourite sausage dish. As it so happens, wieners and potato salad are my mom’s and my traditional Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve food.  This year we cheated (store-bought instead of homemade potato […]

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16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 8 – Las Posadas

Tasks for Las Posadas: Which was your favorite / worst / most memorable hotel / inn / vacation home stay ever? Tell us all about it! I think I am going to divide the honors three ways here — and very fittingly, two of the three hotel stays in question were in Spanish speaking countries. […]

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Candlelight Breakfast and a Book

16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 3 – St. Martin’s Day – and Square 15 – Newtonmas Tasks for St. Martin’s Day: Write a Mother Goose-style rhyme or a limerick; the funnier the better. –OR– Take a picture of the book you’re currently reading, next to a glass of wine, or the drink of […]

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My Grandma(s)

16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 9 – Mōdraniht Tasks for Mōdraniht: Tell us your favourite memory about your mom, grandma, or the woman who had the greatest impact on your childhood. –OR– Post a picture of you and your mom, or if comfortable, you and your kids. Bonus task: Post 3 things you […]

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Family Christmas Traditions

6 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 13 – Christmas Tasks for Christmas: Post a picture of your stockings hung from the chimney with care, –OR– a picture of Santa’s ‘treat’ waiting for him. –OR– Share with us your family Christmas traditions involving gift-giving, or Santa’s visit. Did you write letters to Santa as a […]

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16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 7 – International Human Rights Day

Tasks for International Human Rights Day: Post a picture of yourself next to a war memorial or other memorial to an event pertaining to Human Rights. (Pictures of just the memorial are ok too.) Anógia village, Crete: the Andartis (resistance fighter) monument near the museum to the village’s destruction in WWII. Crete was occupied by […]

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Nine Candles

16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 8 – Hanukkah: Take 2 Tasks for Hanukkah: Light nine candles around the room (SAFELY) and post a picture. –OR– Play the Dreidel game to pick the next book you read. I already let the dreidel pick my next read for Hanukkah, so this won’t get me an […]

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16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 16 – Kwanzaa

Tasks for Kwanzaa: Create a stack of books in the Kwanzaa color scheme using red, black and green and post your creation and post a photo (or post a photo of a shelfie where black, red and green predominate). BONUS task: Create something with your stack of books: a christmas tree or other easily identifiable […]

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16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Updates / Blackout

I’ve yet to read at least one book for some of the squares, but I’ve completed a minimum of either one book or one task for all of the squares, and in several cases, more.     The Markers: Stack of Books: Books read       Red Bows and Ribbons: Other Tasks completed   […]

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16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 2 – Guy Fawkes Night

Tasks for Guy Fawkes Night: [… M]ake yourself a nice cup of tea and settle down with a good book to read. Which kind of tea is your favorite? Tell us why.   The tea in this mug is Earl Grey, one of the teas I got today during our trip to Frankfurt.  It’s most […]

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