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By: Randi Spray on June 25, 2015 - 3:00am - Add new comment

I’m a fast reader. That’s not boasting. That’s a fact. I kept stats for 2014 and I average one book or 342 pages every three days. (Yes, stats. Like a sport. Competitive reading.)

But those stats hide a lot of variation. I can read a 350-page book in several hours. It can also take me several weeks. The later has been the case with “Death and the Dervish” by Mesa Selimovic. 453 pages long; three weeks and counting.

By: Randi Spray on June 11, 2015 - 3:00am - Add new comment

I admit the trend was fun — for about a week sometime in 2008 — and it did us all a favour by popularizing the supernatural genre (of which many fine examples that do not include vampires can be found), but I’m over vampires.

The best vampire book I ever read was “Dracula”* by Bram Stoker and sometimes I wish it was the only one I ever read.

Unfortunately, it was not.

By: Randi Spray on June 4, 2015 - 3:00am - Add new comment

“What league am I talking about?” you ask.

None other than “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.”

The 2003 movie was a seminal event in my reading life and with the announcement of a reboot in the works, I thought I’d take the time to revisit 13-year-old me.

By: Randi Spray on May 27, 2015 - 3:00am - Add new comment

I like to think I have a pretty good grasp on the English language. I used to roll my eyes when the teachers told us to highlight words we didn’t know in our assigned readings and look them up.

“Please,” I would scoff, “I know the words.”

By: Randi Spray on May 20, 2015 - 3:00am - Add new comment

Being as I am an incorrigible book nerd, I spend a lot of time on a site called Yes, it’s British. Yes, the prices are also in British. Yes, the exchange rate is terrible.

By: Randi Spray on April 29, 2015 - 3:00am - Add new comment

I heard about National Poetry Month the usual way: my Facebook friends. In this case, my friend Alfred A. Knopf publishing. Why am I friends with Knopf publishing on Facebook? I don’t know. I’m not sure how it happened. (I suspect algorithms.) But I’m not complaining. For National Poetry Month, they published a poem a day on their Facebook feed and it was most educational. Take April 22nd’s offering by Richard Kenney:


By: Randi Spray on March 11, 2015 - 3:00am - Add new comment

I have an ongoing list of which books I’m going to read next. It exists only in my head and it’s not very trustworthy. It looks like this:

1.) Currently reading: “Far from the Madding Crowd” by Thomas Hardy

2.) Next Up: Something for my year of reading foreign, probably “In Praise of Hatred” by Khaled Khalifa

3.) The next book in Emile Zola’s Rougon-Macquart series

By: Randi Spray on February 26, 2015 - 4:00am - Add new comment

 The internet tells me there won’t be a “Game of Thrones” book in 2015. This makes it officially four years of waiting for the sixth book, “Winds of Winter.”

By: Randi Spray on February 20, 2015 - 4:00am - Add new comment

I don’t know about you, but I often forget about Portugal.

By: Randi Spray on February 5, 2015 - 4:00am - Add new comment

What makes women dangerous? Is it sex? Insanity? The ability to beat you to a bloody pulp? Is the ability to wield power with grace and decisiveness? The ability to achieve their nefarious goals sneakily and without detection?


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