The State of the Union

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As you may have noticed I haven’t posted a book review or general update of any kind since early June, so I wanted to write up a quick post to let everyone know what’s going on.

First, the good news! After reading it piecemeal since the beginning of February, I finally finished Anna Karenina yesterday on the train ride home (hence the picture). It’s the first “romantic lines in lit” book of 2013, and 12th overall out of the 38.

On the delayed book reviews: I’ve now read 34 books this year, and only reviewed  23. So I’ll be trying to catch up on those over the next few days. In case you’re curious, I’ll be writing about: The Black Ice by Michael Connelly; The Concrete Blonde by Michael Connelly; The Retreat by David Bergen; Stranglehold by Robert Rotenberg; The Black Box by Michael Connelly; Easy Money by Jens Lapidus; A Lion Among Men by Gregory Maguire; The Dressmaker by Kate Alcott; Spin by Catherine McKenzie; The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery; and of course Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy. Some of the reviews might be a little fuzzy, since I read some of the books over a month ago.

Have a great weekend!

– Kelsey

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Photos: Ottawa, Ontario

From May 3-5 I was in Ottawa for the CAJ Conference. I was there as a volunteer, to live-blog a few sessions (on finding a job after j-school, access to information laws in Canada and the States, and on making the transition from reporting to managing). But while I wasn’t in the hotel, I was sight-seeing and taking some amateur photography. You can check out the photography highlights under the jump!

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Photos: Nicholas Hoare Bookstore, Toronto

I’m sure I’m overloading anyone who subscribes to this blog with superfluous emails, and for that I apologize. But I wanted to take advantage of the limited free time I had today, to update my book reviews, and also post some photos of a lovely independent bookstore I visited recently. The Nicholas Hoare bookstore in Toronto is closing soon, but for now it’s open for business down at Front and Church Streets. I encourage everyone to check it out, because it’s gorgeous inside. (And also because we should support independent bookstores, et cetera and so forth.)

But before you head under the cut to see some of my photos from the store, here are some book-related reads that I found recently, and are worth perusing.

The Ghost Writes Back by Amy Boesky is a great article about Boesky’s past life as a ghost-writer for the Sweet Valley High series, and her double-life as an academic writer and a fluffy teen book novelist. It’s a long read, but it’s worth it.

And, on a completely different front, Flavorwire collected pictures (and sometimes videos) of eight bookstores located in residential spaces. They’re all fabulous.

Anyway, I’ll see you under the jump for nice photos of a beautiful bookstore!

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Photos: Montreal, Quebec

Back in December I took a solo trip to Montreal, and had plans to put up some photos on the blog. With the rush of trying to finish the challenge I didn’t get around to it before the end of the year, and this month I’ve been a lot less focused on the blog than usual. Anyway, I’ve finally put together a few photos from la belle province, which you can find under the jump!

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Photos: San Francisco, California

Last Wednesday I flew down to San Francisco for the Online News Association’s annual conference — I was part of their student newsroom, which was responsible for covering the conference. (You can see said coverage here — and don’t just look at my stuff; check out everyone’s entries, because I worked with a bunch of amazingly talented, creative journos who came up with awesome videos and interactives.)

Anyway, while I was there I didn’t see much outside of the hotel, but there are a few choice photos from my trip under the jump, which I thought I’d share in lieu of book reviews.

You know. Because I’m still terribly behind.

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Some articles for you to read

Today has been kind of a bookish day for me. (Although, to be fair, what day isn’t a bookish day?) I took the ferry out to Ward Island, found a cool, shady place to sit, and got a head start on Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. It’s a fun book so far. A choice quote:

“WHO LET THAT CAT IN HERE? SINCE WHEN HAVE WE HAD A PALACE CAT? IS THAT THE CAT THAT SHAT IN MY HELMET? YOU KNOW I CAN’T STAND CATS. WHAT DO YOU MEAN, IT SAVES ON MOUSETRAPS? DON’T TELL ME WHEN I CAN OR CANNOT USE MY REVOLVER INDOORS. STAND BACK OR YOU’LL CATCH A BULLET TOO” (de Bernieres 18).

Aside from that, I found two articles worth sharing. First, check out Natalie Ramm’s “In Defense of Romance Novels” on Thought Catalog, which is an infinitely more eloquent and clever defence of the romance genre than what I offered several months ago.

Secondly, look at Mark Medley’s op-ed in the National Post, entitled “How I put my library on a diet.” I pity the future roommate/boyfriend/husband who has to ask me to do the same. I can tell you now it won’t go well.

I guess I’ll see you again when I finish Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. Given the size of the book I don’t think I’ll be done for another day or so.

– Kelsey

Photo: Coming up…

I just thought I’d give you guys a visual representation of the books I hope to get through before school starts. Nineteen books in 23 days? Good luck, me!

In case you’re wondering, I’m starting with Sweet Talk by Julie Garwood, because I was really excited about it when I bought it, and the review should be up later tonight — I started it around 4 p.m. and I’m already halfway through. I’ll be following that up with another “Romantic Lines in Lit” read, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, by Louis de Bernieres.

– Kelsey