the Little Red Reviewer

achievement unlocked: home owners!

Posted on: May 1, 2021

after so, so many years of saving, financial planning, saving some more, and then getting outbid left and right, we have moved into our dream home!

We ended up with 50-ish boxes of books, including fiction, history, graphic novels, manga, and cookbooks. There is a giant stack of books boxes in the living room, and another slightly less scary stack upstairs. I thought unpacking the kitchen was intimidating. . . . I don’t even know where to start with the books boxes.

I was thinking that my upcoming TBR should be “I’ll read at least one book that is in this random box that I’m opening!” but knowing my luck, I’d land on one of my husband history books boxes, and end up reading about British looms in the 1880s. Which, could be interesting?

Our backyard looks like a freaking fairy wonderland.

but I HAVE been reading this last week! a few pages here and there while we were packing the last boxes, and trying to stay awake after unloading them all:

The Best of World SF by Lavie Tidhar – stay tuned for my review to appear in Apex Magazine!

The Unraveling by Benjamin Rosenbaum – boy do I have feelings on this book! This is one of the most unique and original science fiction books I’ve ever read, and also one of the hardest to get into. In this far future, you really can be in three places at once! I’m happy I kept reading, because I really did end up getting very invested in the main character, even if half the time I wasn’t quite sure who was talking.

And I’ve got an ARC of Nicole Kornher-Stace’s Jillian vs Parasite Planet to read. I really need to order a copy of Firebreak, as if Kornher-Stace wrote it, I want to read it!

Moving is exhausting, mentally and physically. and somehow, living out in the country, our internet speed is literally twice as fast as when we lived in an urban city center? So I’ve been watching a lot of Netflix these last few days, when I wasn’t tired enough to sleep but too tired to move. Been binge watching Shadow and Bone, yes, that Shadow and Bone. And I’m enjoying it! I watched three episodes in a row yesterday! Some quick thoughts:

  • I only turned the show on because of the hype, and an early scene screamed Fullmetal Alchemist, so I kept watching. Some grisha (folks with magical abilities) are practicing, and we see someone snap her fingers to create fire. It was so Roy Mustang I couldn’t even, so OF COURSE I had to keep watching!
  • I love LOVE the costumes! those long robes? omg the embroidery! the hairstyles!
  • I was worried that this was going to be Game of Thrones sexed up, and there would be boobs everywhere. Boobs would have their own plot devices, a la Game of Thrones, boobs, boobs, everywhere! Look, I’m not against boobs on tv, but I like a good plot that’s got more going on than LOOK, BOOBS! this show has a smidge of nudity, and it’s done right.
  • Who is the chick who is chained up in the boat? I’m sure I should care about her, but I have no idea who she is.
  • Inej is THE BEST. Please don’t let Inej be some kind of ultra-villain, please!
  • Ahhh Ben Barnes, you are so hot. But please don’t try to act. Just stand there, look hot all dressed in black, and don’t do or say anything. Srsly, Ben Barnes has exactly two looks in this show – staring intently at Alina with his mouth closed, and staring intently at Alina with his mouth slightly open. That is literally all he does.
  • Not sure I’ll be reading the Shadow and Bone books, the whole thing does seem a little too YA for me, but I am enjoying the hell out of the TV show.

Kinda wish I’d marked the box that has my Witcher paperbacks in it, those sound like a good read right now.

I do have a book review I’m working on, for Rosenbaum’s The Unraveling (because omg, so. many. thoughts!), but I fear for the next little while this blog is going to consist of new home adventures, tree and flower identifying, and book chat and mini reviews, rather than long form articles.

I am only 10 minutes from a giant used bookstore and the public library. . . .

21 Responses to "achievement unlocked: home owners!"

Congratulations on your new home! And 50 boxes of books is a lot, lol…better get those shelves up 😀

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thank you!!! luckily I found a really good hardware store yesterday that has a bazillion different things for shelving. I don’t mind bookcases that pack flat that we put together, I don’t mind the units that bolt on to the studs and then you hook on supports and shelves, and I even have a spot picked out where I’d love to have built-ins one day!

step one: buy bookshelves or some kinda shelving.
step two: put it together.
step three: put all books on shelves

gah, i need more coffee, just thinking about that!

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Congratulations! How large is your backyard? That picture is lovely, but looks like a lot of work!
As for World SF, I‘m partly through it and have already a couple of reviews up for the first couple of stories. Especially the first (Immersion by Bodard) was awesome – review’s here: https://reiszwolf.wordpress.com/2021/04/25/immersion-2012-sf-xuya-short-story-by-aliette-de-bodard/

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we’re crossing our fingers that most of the backyard is shady enough that we won’t have to mow it. First big project: buy a lawn mower, as the front yard is all sunny and will need to be mowed. Yard work counts as exercise, right? And working out in the yard seems more enjoyable than hopping on an exercise bike.

off to read your World SF reviews! I loved Immersion!

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Ahh, I’m so happy for you. Huge congratulations. And, that is not a backyard! It’s the start of an adventure. I’ve seen all the hype for the Grisha series and I wasn’t sure. I never read the series because I suspected it would feel too YA so wasn’t sure if I wanted to watch but if you’re enjoying it so much then perhaps I’ll give in and try it.
Lynn 😀

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the whole property is a hill, and yesterday when I walked (climbed? hiked?) to the very back of the yard, I was high enough up that I could see the roof of the lower part of the house! LOL, it’s very dirty up there. I fell in love with the yard when we looked at this house, can’t wait to spent the entire summer (and fall, and spring!) out there! I need to get some more out door chairs, hoping to catch an estate sale or yard sale, to get some for cheap.

yes, SO MUCH hype for the Grishaverse! and yes, it is very YA and has all the YA tropes (is my opinion from watching 5 episodes of the tv show). Like, ALL the tropes – love triangle, orphans who don’t know what secrets their parents harbored, frenemies to friends, rags to riches, etc. tbh, in a way, the tropiness made me enjoy it all the more, as i knew it was going to be a gentle YA, with all the death, gore, and violence being off screen (so far). If i was a teenager, I’m sure the books would be my absolute favorite thing.

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Your new place sounds amazing. You can go for a hike and a picnic in your own backyard. How awesome is that! I love garage sales. I’m all about the bargain hunting and up cycling is good. I don’t mind giving things a new lease of life. I imagine your head is in the clouds atm. Probably wandering around the rooms feeling happy to be there. Enjoy 😍

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yes to all of that! I too am a fan of up cycling. when we packed up our old place, I took boxes and boxes of stuff to donate, things that were in just fine condition but I didn’t need/didn’t use anymore.

you got it in one: I’ve been wandering the house, just in awe of all the rooms and space and that we can paint the rooms any color we want. I took some time off work last week, for the move, and compared to the overwhelmingness of moving, going back to work tomorrow is going to be a cake walk.

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It’s such a lovely feeling. I’m so happy for you. Moving is exhausting though. It all starts well with lots of enthusiasm and then slowly wears off and some boxes take a long time before the contents see the light of day.

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Congratulations on the new house! Lovely backyard!

I kinda like the idea of reading a book from each randomly opened box. Who knows what you‘ll discover on your search for those Witcher books…

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Thank you!! my reading is already suffering, because I’ve already spent hours just standing out there, enjoying nature. I kinda think I might do the “read a book from a random box”, so long as the box I open is fiction! who knows what forgotten gems I’ll find, I always do love a good re-read.

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Stand out there with an audiobook? 😊

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you are a genius!

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I would DIE for a backyard like that! Congrats on your new home, its totally worth it😁

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the property is what sold us on the house. I walk out the backdoor and feel like I’m in a sanctuary! Talk about a dream home! (and, bonus! we just, 20 minutes ago, figured out how to turn the central AC on!)

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Oh my goodness, look at your enchanted forest! I am consumed with envy. (My chromosomes think I live in Ireland, but in fact I have spent most of my life in the central valley of California, which is a lot hotter and drier than my chromosomes like. I go on a lot of walks with friends and bug them by steering us to wherever there is a bit of shade.) Congratulations on your new place!

I’ve only just heard about Shadow and Bone (I know, I am hopelessly unhip) so your reactions are very helpful. Haven’t made up my mind yet about it.

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It really is amazing out there, I keep expecting to see enchanted deer or fairies out there. So far have seen a ton of robins and some very pretty butterflies. Don’t be too jealous, we gotta mow that thing!

I’ve never lived in California, but I’ve visited a bunch of times. What I remember is low humidity = good hair days! But oh yes, that sun! I never wore so many hats and went through so much sunblock as when I spent time in Cali.

Should you have 45 minutes to kill, watch the first episode of Shadow and Bone, see if it catches your attention.

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Looks fabulous! You might put a couple of Rhododendrons into that lovely back yard… Best of luck with the unpacking and book shelf stuff. Just about anything is better than board and block, but even that works in a pinch.

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I love your suggestion for rhododendrons! I bet they would do wonderful here. We found some shelving units we like, just need to get them ordered and then put together.

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Congratulations on the move!

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some of the books reviewed here were free ARCs supplied by publishers/authors/other groups. Some of the books here I got from the library. the rest I *gasp!* actually paid for. I'll do my best to let you know what's what.
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