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The Week in Review: 08.03.2018

August 3, 2018


Between the Covers

Finished last week:

BIRDS AND THEIR FEATHERS by Britta Teckentrup is a gorgeous book about, you guessed it, birds and the function of their feathers.  Readers learn about the different types of feathers, their structure, and their purpose.  Feathers do so much more than help birds fly – they protect them from the cold, help them walk on snow, help them hear, and more.  Even their colors serve a purpose, including camouflage and attracting a mate.  Feathers are so vital to a bird’s well being, they have to take special care of them.

This lovely book also includes tidbits about feathers in culture and how humans have used feathers.  It’s printed on heavy duty matte paper and Teckentrup’s illustrations are simply beautiful – I think many of the pages are frame worthy.  Pick this book up for curious early readers – you won’t be disappointed! (Review copy provided by Media Masters Publicity.)


When Camas Davis lost her job as the food editor for Portland Monthly, she didn’t know what to do next.  When she found a forgotten about credit card, she decided to use it to travel to France to learn butchery.  She shares her experience and the way it changed her life in her memoir, KILLING IT: AN EDUCATION.  As the founder of the Portland Meat Collective, Davis is well known in the butchery world.  I love memoirs and reading about women who break down barriers so I was anxious to pick this book up.  I thought it was well written (although some of the descriptions of butchery were pretty intense) but have mixed feelings about it.  I really liked that Davis made me think about where the meat I eat comes from and how it was treated before it was slaughtered but, to me, she came across somewhat intolerant of people who don’t share her views.  She also implied that everyone in France gets their meat from small producers like the one she worked with and, since I lived there for two years, I know that’s not true.  In the end, I’m glad I read the book – it’s thoughtful and thought provoking.  I’d love to talk to someone else who’s read the book, so I think KILLING IT would be great for book clubs.  (Review copy provided by Penguin Press.)


CONVENIENCE STORE WOMAN by Sayaka Murata is a quirky little book about Keiko, a young woman who takes a job at a convenience store as an 18 year old student and, 18 years later is still working in the same job.  Keiko is socially awkward and generally takes her cues from those around her but is comfortable at work where she knows what’s expected of her.  She’s happy with her job and her life but when she continues to be pressured to get married and find a career she makes a rash decision.

This book was translated from Japanese by Ginny Tapley Takemori and, as far as I can remember, it’s the first book translated from Japanese that I’ve read.  It’s a small book so it was a quick read and I thought it was delightful.  The characters are good, the writing is solid, and the storyline is unique.  I was captivated from the beginning and breezed through this little gem.  (Review copy provided by Grove Press.)


Currently reading:


On the Screen

Not much of anything.

Off the blog

  • I spent a couple of days at the beach with a friend and her kids and just got back last night.
  • I walked while I was at the beach but I’m not sure how far and managed to average just over 18,400 Fitbit steps a day.

What’s going on in your corner of the world?

18 Comments leave one →
  1. Beth F permalink
    August 3, 2018 6:42 am

    All the books you read this week sound good, especially the bird one.

  2. August 3, 2018 7:21 am

    The bird book sounds fascinating!

  3. August 3, 2018 8:58 am

    I only know one person who is still at the job they started at 18 yrs. old. so the Murata book sounds interesting to me. I will be listening to it starting today.

  4. August 3, 2018 9:36 am

    I recommended The Convenience Store Woman on the library overdrive, but they haven’t bought it yet. Not sure its one I want to buy but would like to read. I’ve skimmed the Birds and their Feathers book and noticed it’s beautiful illustrations right away. Can’t wait to look at it closer.

  5. August 3, 2018 9:43 am

    There are a bunch of really outstanding documentaries that are either in theaters or have recently left them: RBG, Three Identical Strangers, Dark Money, Won’t You Be My Neighbor, and American Animals. Also, there’s a great indie called Hearts Beat Loud.

  6. August 3, 2018 10:46 am

    I am intrigued by Convenience Store Woman…and also Killing It. I would love to find a forgotten about credit card! LOL.

    Enjoy your weekend…glad you got to the beach.

  7. August 3, 2018 11:03 am

    Glad you got to go on a little getaway to the beach, it sounds relaxing.

  8. Diane permalink
    August 3, 2018 11:36 am

    I’m not much of a meat eater but not a vegetarian either but, I don’t think I can read Killing It😭too much of an animal lover I guess.

  9. August 3, 2018 3:08 pm

    Good week 🙂 Yay beach

  10. August 3, 2018 3:24 pm

    I agree; the bird one sounds great!

  11. Patty permalink
    August 3, 2018 4:19 pm

    Those were some really unusual books that you tackled this week! Any time.that you can spend at the beach has got to be satisfying and so relaxing!

  12. August 3, 2018 7:28 pm

    Kathy, it sounds like you had a lovely week. Convenience Store Woman sounds like my kind of book. I enjoy reading translated Japanese novels. Birds and Their Feathers also appeals to me. The weekend has arrived–enjoy!

  13. August 5, 2018 4:51 am

    Interesting books! Convenience Store Woman has been on my list for a while — I’ve read many books translated from Japanese, so I wish you a happy time if you pursue the idea. The idea of a “forgotten” credit card is amusing. Does the author know that you still have to pay the bills? Or does that mean something else? I wonder.

    best… mae at

  14. August 5, 2018 7:14 pm

    Looks like you had a good book week. The bird and feathers book has me curious. Glad you got away to the beach. Doesn’t that clean air do something to your mood? It sure affects me. Have a great week Kathy.

  15. August 6, 2018 4:48 pm

    I have always been borderline vegetarian so I think Killing It would send me back to those days for sure. That Japanese book sounds lovely. Very Murakami like.

  16. August 7, 2018 3:53 pm

    The beach must have felt great. I haven’t seen the book Killing It, but it sounds like it has some interesting issues to it.

  17. bookingmama permalink
    August 13, 2018 8:05 am

    CONVENIENCE STORE WOMAN sounds absolutely delightful!

  18. August 13, 2018 11:28 pm

    Someone else has mentioned Convenience Store Woman and while I’m not a fan of Japanese literature, this one sounds quite good. Something about your description reminds me of Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine. (I’m also very glad that I am not in the same job I was when I was 18 – Carl’s Jr., fast food!!)

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