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USA - Niagara

To read or not to read?

I'm about 80 pages into the book I'm reading - and struggling. I can't decide whether I can't concentrate because real life is a little difficult at the moment or whether I genuinely don't like the book. It's The Whale Road by Robert Low, an historical about Vikings, and very 'blokey' if you know what I mean? A lot of blood and gore, axes in foreheads and entrails all over the place. I even had dreams about it the other night and not very nice ones either. I know I've said this before but I honestly don't like giving up on a book but one of my reading resolutions this year (along with the short story thing) was to be more relaxed about reading. Not so obsessed with numbers and allowing myself to stop reading a novel long enough to read a few magazines or short stories. I'm inclined to think that should also include giving up on a book when it starts to give you nightmares. So, that's the first book of the year for the charity shop pile. *Unless* you like blood and gore? Please say and it's yours!

In the meantime I'm loving Trollope the Traveller edited by Graham Handley. It's chock full of snippets like

Bear in mind Trollope worked for the Post Office all his life.

I have said that the cross mail conveyances in Canada did not seem to be very closely bound as to time; but they are regulated by clock-work in comparison with some of them in the United States. 'Are you going this morning?' I said to a mail-driver in Vermont. 'I thought you always started in the evening.' 'Wa'll; I guess I do. But it rained some last night, so I jist stayed at home.' I do not know that I have ever felt more shocked in my life, and I could hardly keep my tongue off the man. The mails, however, would have paid no respect to me in Vermont, and I was obliged to walk away crestfallen.

And:

'I doubt if the lady can do it,' one man said to me. I asked if ladies did not sometimes go up. 'Yes; young women do, at times,' he said. After that my wife resolved that she would see the top of the Owl's Head, or die in the attempt, and so we started. They never think of sending a guide with one in these places, whereas in Europe a traveller is not allowed to go a step without one. When I asked for one to show us the way up Mt. Washington, I was told there were no idle boys about that place. The path was indicated to us, and off we started with high hopes.

The book is sheer joy if you like 19th. century travel books. I now need to find out where 'the Owl's Head' mountain is. They saw the sun set from the top... entirely forgetting that would then mean they had to come down the mountain in the dark! Ooops.

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Comments

I love travel books, not only to see new scenes but to soak up the writer's impression of the world around him or her. The excerpts from Trollope were wonderful reminders that one reads writers long dead and instantly feels a rapport with that person, giggling inside about one's wife insisting on going to some out of the way spot. My own husband would grumble in agreement if he read this.

As for setting aside books, I look at it this way -- it just gives me more time to read books I really want to read. I mean, do you REALLY want to keep seeing bloodthirsty Vikings in your dreams?
You're back with LJ? I must have missed something...

I'm a bit of a travel book junkie and could easily read nothing but. Trollope is so droll too. Plus it's amazing how little has actually changed in all these years.

Yes, I gave the other book the heave-ho. The Vikings can go pillage in someone else's dreams! I've just started The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver which you may be familiar with as it's about Africa.
Yes, I'm back, and glad about. I tried other groups but they were stuck in Fan Fiction -- and resolutely being early 20s. There's a wide range of age groups here. I just have to be careful not to talk about certain subjects.

I am familiar with the Poisonwood Bible. Kingsolver is an amazing writer. But Trollop -- ah yes, that drollness is sooo delicious.
I've a new rule re: books.

If I don't like it within twenty pages, I stop reading. Life's too short slogging along (for me) on something I don't like.
It strikes me that's a pretty good rule actually. I read somewhere that you can tell in the first paragraph whether you'll like a book or not and I think there might be some truth in that.
Hello! This is Taniwha, the creator and maintainer (or Mod) of addmy_readinglj. I've added your Reading Journal (to my regular Journal because my Book Journal is a closed community - feel free to add both or either if you wish) because it looks interesting and would love to see it advertised in my community! (:
Hi, nice to meet you. I will definitely post in your new community - it sounds very interesting. I'll do that tonight as I have a busy day coming up. :-)

I'll add your reading journal to my regular journal as I don't tend to read the flist of my reading journal very much. It gets complicated doesn't it? LOL!
Yes, I know what you mean about things getting complicated, lol! ;)

Look forward to seeing your post. (:

Now, I have a confession to make and a favour to ask; I've been ogling several of your LJ icons and would love to use them both in my personal LJ and in various communities - would you allow me to do so, please? I'd be most grateful!

Thanks in advance.

Regards, Taniwha (:
Yes, feel free to take whatever icons you like. Most of them are made by other people and freely available to snag. I usally put who made them beside the icon.
Thanks a lot! (: