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It's funny, I wondered why my Read Scotland sign-up post suddenly had so many page-views. Now I know! I hope lots of people join Peggy's challenge as I rather think it will be a lot of fun.


I have been to both the Twain house and Orchard House--you would love it. One of my favorite parts of the Twain house was when you walked into the foyer. It was very dimly lit, and the tour just milled around for a few minutes waiting for the docent to come out. When she did, she turned the light up so we could actually see, and said, "What you just saw was how bright this hall would have been with gaslight." You watch old movies and they always make it look like it was almost as bright as electricity--not so! Orchard House is lovely, too--they have all of May's artwork on the walls, and you see Louisa's desk, etc.


Thanks for linking to my WWI Centenary posts! I aim to get to as many of them as I can.

I'm originally from the Hartford area, and the Mark Twain House was a popular destination for school trips. Harriet Beecher Stowe's house is very close by.


Such a lot of food for thought with this post - if only I could have the time to do nothing but read or other bookish things!

The Impac list is definitely a varied one - I've read a few of them and would definitely recommend Tell the Wolves I'm Home - I absolutely adored it when I read it last year.
I definitely covet the gorgeous hardback versions of Elizabeth Taylor's novels by Virago - even though I already have them all in paperback version - but I am still wavering about both The Luminaries and Donna Tartt's new book despite being told that I would like them by a lot of people who normally have impeccable judgement.
As there are long waiting lists for both at the library maybe I have time to have a think about it.


I'll take the vegan version of the cheese sandwich and malted milk. Must be close to lunch because it sounds sooo good right now!


It's always fun to see where people 'come from' when you look at those links behind the scenes! I think I might join in as well and have been contemplating the books I might will begin making plans now, I think. Thanks for the heads up on it!

vicki (skiourophile / bibliolathas)

Lots to explore here - I like the post on food in books a lot. I have this nice anthology by Joan Smith called 'Hungry for You' which I thoroughly recommend if you like thinking about the links between food and almost everything else in fiction and non-fiction - symbolism, sex, politics, cannibalism!, history, etc. A lovely book to dip into.


Both sound wonderful! Some day I'll get there! That would be really striking to see what a home lit by gaslight was really like. I am sure our modern perceptions must be completely off when thinking about what it must have really been like! I have read a little bit about LMA and would love to read some of her more sensationalist stories!


I was hoping to corral them together for easy reference. I can't tell you how many times I have found good reads via your lists and reviews. I always make note of your book lists--this sort or the forthcoming books lists-they are both Much appreciated! :) I am looking forward to reading some of the books from the lists and have the Speller book waiting for me at the library right now! How cool that you lived near Twain's house--would love to see it. And I didn't realize that HBS lived nearby as well. There are lots of literary destinations in the NE, aren't there?


I know--there is not enough time to read all the things I want to--I am perpetually behind in blog reading, and then there are all my magazine and newspaper subscriptions...but inevitably I almost always reach first for a book over all other types of reading materials. That IMPAC list is massive, but I like it--I have yet to really look through it properly--which will be dangerous--I am sure I'll end up putting holds on more books than I know I can read. It is a vicious cycle. I really want to read The Luminaries. I feel like I should first read The Secret History before picking up Donna Tartt's newest book--but I probably won't! Not sure I want to read her newest but I probably can be convinced to do so....


Pure comfort food that! I would opt for the apple pie a la mode myself. Cherry is my favorite, but I can be talked into a piece of apple pretty easily, too.


Why do I always feel the need to remark on food/meals/sweets? I swear I come out of lurkdom when I spot food mentioned by others online. I'll have to look up Joan Smith's book-that sounds like a lot of fun (cannibalism, eh?).


Thanks for the mention, Danielle! I really enjoyed the trip and writing about it after. I LOVE seeing where writers work--I only wish they would have allowed photography inside the homes. I'm going to check out the other links you provided--always something interesting happening in the world of books and reading.


That's great - I'm glad you've been getting reading ideas from the lists! Your blog is an excellent source for my TBR also. I'm debating whether I want to read the Speller because the focus on trench warfare isn't of great interest, but I've heard wonderful things about the book.

Yes, NE is full of literary sites - I've been to Orchard House and Walden Pond (though not for a long time) and just last year, saw the House of Seven Gables while visiting Salem. I really ought to read that book!!


I'm a great fan of lists--both making them and finding them (to discover ever more interesting-sounding books). I really liked the first mystery Elizabeth Speller wrote--have the second here to read still. I'm curious about this stand alone novel--I tend to also prefer books that are less about the battles and more about the home front, but as I like her work I'm going to give it a try. There should be quite a good selection of books about this period to choose from--for the next year or so! I should go to Red Cloud, NE--as it is where Willa Cather grew up--but it's all the way on the other side of the state! .... Someday!


I very much enjoyed all the photos and reading about your trip! It is fun visiting literary sites. I had wanted to go on a tour of 'Dashiell Hammett's' San Francisco when I was there, but it didn't happen. Maybe next time! it is a pity that you couldn't take photos inside--sometime they will let you, and sometimes not! Still, I enjoyed all the photos you shared. I guess this just means I need to go visit there myself! :)


Thanks for some great links. I was especially interested in WWI as next year's readalong should focus heavily on WWI. And the Civil War. I'd like to catch up with that. In any case the list is almost ready but I added one book from the WWI link you attached. It's due out in January (the new Helen Dunmore).


We've not read much about the Civil War (I think the couple of books you chose were rereads for me and in the end I didn't read them that second time...). I am, of course, very curious what your list will look like. I am going to join the LT Virago group read and am working on a list of books to choose from. Some books I will read from their list, but I think I will also read some books I have wanted to read as well. And I am glad you are going to pick the new Helen Dunmore--I had planned to read that one in any case! :)

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