I have to admit that I don't get out much at this time of year. Let's face it, it's hotter than the hind hinges of Hell (as someone I grew up with used to say), and you can work up a sweat doing nothing more strenuous than toweling off after your shower. I know-- I am very lucky that I have the choice to be a homebody. I well remember when I didn't. But now I can save myself for trips out into the blast furnace to head to The Poisoned Pen and spend my afternoons sitting in the shade in my pool reading one good book after another.
But my husband is a fair English rose of a man, and when the dermatologist started hacking pre-cancerous chunks out of his skin, he decided that his pool time would be limited to when the sun went down. I miss those afternoons we spent together, but I also don't want any more chunks taken out of the man I love. Like someone else I knew once said, you just have to cope and adjust. I'm thankful that I don't have the same problem. I will say that I do like getting in the pool at night. For one thing, I can watch a bat or two swoop over the pool feasting on mosquitoes before the blighters can feast on me.
How many of you noticed that Denis reads crime fiction, too? He told me that he'd gotten away from reading for several years, but there must be something about living with a woman who reads 200 books a year that makes you want to start up again...
It's almost time for me to hoist the umbrella and finish reading a book. Will I take another book out there with me in case I do finish the one I'm reading? What a silly question!
Head 'em up! Moooove 'em out!
►Books & Other Interesting Tidbits◄
- A glimpse of Virginia Woolf's original manuscript for Mrs. Dalloway.
- Sacramento has renamed a local park after Reading Rainbow host LeVar Burton.
- How the film Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban accidentally spoiled some future storylines.
- Nearly all U.S. visa applicants are now required to submit a five-year social media history.
- How the invention of Scotch tape led to a revolution in how companies managed employees.
- In 1851, detectives were new to the London police force. The most famous novelist in the world figured he'd go on some ridealongs.
- Crimes on emigrant wagon trains.
- What happens after Amazon's domination is complete? Its bookstore offers clues.
►Channeling My Inner Indiana Jones◄
- Leonardo da Vinci's huge notebook collections, the Codex Forster, is now digitized in high-resolution so you can explore them online.
- A lost version of a Delacroix masterpiece goes on view after being found in a Paris apartment.
- A Bible owned by Abraham Lincoln, unknown to historians for 150 years, has gone on display.
- Scientists have identified the exotic birds depicted in Peru's mysterious Nazca lines.
- The first Neolithic city got so overcrowded its people turned on each other.
- Sixteenth-century boxwood carvings are so miniature researchers used X-ray to solve their mystery. (They are gorgeous!)
- Scientists find the "Lost City of the Monkey God" with rare animals long thought to be extinct.
►Channeling My Inner Elly Mae Clampett◄
- A young black bear was put down after humans fed it and took selfies. (Wildlife would be in a much better state if there were no such thing as a selfie.)
- Why does losing a pet hurt so much?
- A litter of baby bobcats checks out the camera on the Tucson, Arizona roof where they were born.
- How social media supports animal cruelty and the illegal pet trade.
- A stunning giant squid was captured on video in US waters for the first time.
- Poachers' poison kills 530 endangered vultures in Botswana. They may be ugly, but they have an important reason for being on this planet. I'm talking about the vultures, by the way.
- Volunteers counted all the squirrels in Central Park.
- Listen to the first known song of the North Pacific Right whale.
- The grand cultural influence of Octavia Butler.
- Wrestling with the legacy of an American icon: On John Wayne, Cancel Culture, and the Art of Problematic Artists.
- Good for her! After bold moves with Steph Curry shoes, an Arizona girl, Riley Morrison, was honored by the Phoenix Mercury.
►The Happy Wanderer◄
- This Norwegian island wants to become the world's first time-free zone.
- The Bara Imambara, a magnificent 18th-century hall in Lucknow, India, consists of a maze of nearly a thousand interconnected passages. (Do they provide balls of twine or bread crumbs for entrants?)
- Poster House in New York City is the first poster museum in the U.S.
- As the Woodbury Fire burns, crews fight to save the ancient Medusa Mother Tree in the Superstition Mountain Wilderness.
- The annual burning of Zozobra rids Santa Fe of doom and gloom for another year.
►I ♥ Lists◄
- Ten famous book hoarders (or as I describe them, stockpilers).
- Debut authors get the limelight. These seven women are killing it with their follow-ups, too.
- Six new authors to discover this summer, according to CrimeReads.
- The art world mystery has it all: tortured artists, gallery parties, downtown scenesters, existential angst, counterfeits, and collectors.
- Eight thrillers about those who are not what they seem.
- A day in the life: the best books set over a 24-hour period.
- How many copies did famous books sell in their first year?
- From Dr. Frankenstein to Hannibal Lecter, nothing sends a chill down the spine like a medical man with terrible designs.
- Middle school reading lists 100 years ago vs. today.
That's all for this week! Don't forget to stop by next Friday when I'll be sharing a freshly selected batch of links for your surfing pleasure.
Have a great weekend, and read something fabulous!