Tag: to read

November TBR & Nonfiction November

“October extinguished itself in a rush of howling winds and driving rain and November arrived, cold as frozen iron, with hard frosts every morning and icy drafts that bit at exposed hands and faces.”
― J.K. Rowling

I have a hankering for some fantasy fiction this month after reading Victorian literature in October for Victober. Despite this, I will most likely join in with Nonfiction November. I just won’t let it take over my month.

I plan on reading one or two nonfiction books, some audiobooks, an ebook or two, print books and a couple of magazines.

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Nonfiction November

Nonfiction November is a readathon in November aimed at reading nonfiction books. There are a few challenges but I’m not bothering with them. It’s hosted by ABookOlive and NonFicBooks.

 

HungerHunger by Roxane Gay

From the bestselling author of Bad Feminist: a searingly honest memoir of food, weight, self-image, and learning how to feed your hunger while taking care of yourself.

I ate and ate and ate in the hopes that if I made myself big, my body would be safe. I buried the girl I was because she ran into all kinds of trouble. I tried to erase every memory of her, but she is still there, somewhere. . . . I was trapped in my body, one that I barely recognized or understood, but at least I was safe.

In her phenomenally popular essays and long-running Tumblr blog, Roxane Gay has written with intimacy and sensitivity about food and body, using her own emotional and psychological struggles as a means of exploring our shared anxieties over pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health. As a woman who describes her own body as “wildly undisciplined,” Roxane understands the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. In Hunger, she explores her own past—including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life—and brings readers along on her journey to understand and ultimately save herself.

With the bracing candor, vulnerability, and power that have made her one of the most admired writers of her generation, Roxane explores what it means to learn to take care of yourself: how to feed your hungers for delicious and satisfying food, a smaller and safer body, and a body that can love and be loved—in a time when the bigger you are, the smaller your world becomes.


How Not to Die: Discover the Foods Scientifically Proven to Prevent and Reverse DiseaseHow Not to Die: Discover the Foods Scientifically Proven to Prevent and Reverse Disease by Michael Greger, Gene Stone

From the physician behind the wildly popular website NutritionFacts.org, How Not to Die reveals the groundbreaking scientific evidence behind the only diet that can prevent and reverse many of the causes of disease-related death.

The vast majority of premature deaths can be prevented through simple changes in diet and lifestyle. In How Not to Die, Dr. Michael Greger, the internationally-renowned nutrition expert, physician, and founder of NutritionFacts.org, examines the fifteen top causes of premature death in America — heart disease, various cancers, diabetes, Parkinson’s, high blood pressure, and more — and explains how nutritional and lifestyle interventions can sometimes trump prescription pills and other pharmaceutical and surgical approaches, freeing us to live healthier lives.

The simple truth is that most doctors are good at treating acute illnesses but bad at preventing chronic disease. The fifteen leading causes of death claim the lives of 1.6 million Americans annually. This doesn’t have to be the case. By following Dr. Greger’s advice, all of it backed up by strong scientific evidence, you will learn which foods to eat and which lifestyle changes to make to live longer.

History of prostate cancer in your family? Put down that glass of milk and add flaxseed to your diet whenever you can. Have high blood pressure? Hibiscus tea can work better than a leading hypertensive drug-and without the side effects. Fighting off liver disease? Drinking coffee can reduce liver inflammation. Battling breast cancer? Consuming soy is associated with prolonged survival. Worried about heart disease (the number 1 killer in the United States)? Switch to a whole-food, plant-based diet, which has been repeatedly shown not just to prevent the disease but often stop it in its tracks.

In addition to showing what to eat to help treat the top fifteen causes of death, How Not to Die includes Dr. Greger’s Daily Dozen — a checklist of the twelve foods we should consume every day. Full of practical, actionable advice and surprising, cutting edge nutritional science, these doctor’s orders are just what we need to live longer, healthier lives.


Audiobooks

Spinning SilverSpinning Silver by Naomi Novik, read by Katy Sobey

Fantasy

Will dark magic claim their home? Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders, but her father’s too kind-hearted to collect his debts. They face poverty, until Miryem hardens her own heart and takes up his work in their village. Her success creates rumours she can turn silver into gold, which attract the fairy king of winter himself. He sets her an impossible challenge – and if she fails, she’ll die. Yet if she triumphs, it may mean a fate worse than death. And in her desperate efforts to succeed, Miryem unwittingly spins a web which draws in the unhappy daughter of a lord. Irina’s father schemes to wed her to the tsar – he will pay any price to achieve this goal. However, the dashing tsar is not what he seems. And the secret he hides threatens to consume the lands of mortals and winter alike. Torn between deadly choices, Miryem and Irina embark on a quest that will take them to the limits of sacrifice, power and love. As with her standalone novel Uprooted, Naomi Novik has once again been influenced by classic folktales. Taking Rumpelstiltskin as her starting point, she’s woven a rich, multilayered new story which is a joy to read.
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Do You Want to Start a Scandal (Spindle Cove, #5)Do You Want To Start A Scandal by Tessa Dare, read by Carmen Rose

Historical Romance

On the night of the Parkhurst ball, someone had a scandalous tryst in the library. Was it Lord Canby, with the maid, on the divan? Or Miss Fairchild, with a rake, against the wall? Perhaps the butler did it.
All Charlotte Highwood knows is this: it wasn’t her. But rumors to the contrary are buzzing. Unless she can discover the lovers’ true identity, she’ll be forced to marry Piers Brandon, Lord Granville—the coldest, most arrogantly handsome gentleman she’s ever had the misfortune to embrace. When it comes to emotion, the man hasn’t got a clue.
But as they set about finding the mystery lovers, Piers reveals a few secrets of his own. The oh-so-proper marquess can pick locks, land punches, tease with sly wit . . . and melt a woman’s knees with a single kiss. The only thing he guards more fiercely than Charlotte’s safety is the truth about his dark past.
Their passion is intense. The danger is real. Soon Charlotte’s feeling torn. Will she risk all to prove her innocence? Or surrender it to a man who’s sworn to never love?


Chimes at Midnight (October Daye, #7)Chimes at Midnight by Seanan McGuire, read by Mary Robinette Kowal

Urban Fantasy

Things are starting to look up for October “Toby” Daye. She’s training her squire, doing her job, and has finally allowed herself to grow closer to the local King of Cats. It seems like her life may finally be settling down…at least until dead changelings start appearing in the alleys of San Francisco, killed by an overdose of goblin fruit.
Toby’s efforts to take the problem to the Queen of the Mists are met with harsh reprisals, leaving her under sentence of exile from her home and everyone she loves. Now Toby must find a way to reverse the Queen’s decree, get the goblin fruit off the streets – and, oh, yes, save her own life, since more than a few of her problems have once again followed her home. And then there’s the question of the Queen herself, who seems increasingly unlikely to have a valid claim to the throne….
To find the answers, October and her friends will have to travel from the legendary Library of Stars into the hidden depths of the Kingdom of the Mists – and they’ll have to do it fast, because time is running out. In Faerie, some fates are worse than death.
October Daye is about to find out what they are.


Ebooks

Poison Princess (The Arcana Chronicles, #1)Poison Princess by Kresley Cole

Young Adult Fantasy

She could save the world—or destroy it.
Sixteen-year-old Evangeline “Evie” Greene leads a charmed life, until she begins experiencing horrifying hallucinations. When an apocalyptic event decimates her Louisiana hometown, Evie realizes her hallucinations were actually visions of the future—and they’re still happening. Fighting for her life and desperate for answers, she must turn to her wrong-side-of-the-bayou classmate: Jack Deveaux.
But she can’t do either alone.
With his mile-long rap sheet, wicked grin, and bad attitude, Jack is like no boy Evie has ever known. Even though he once scorned her and everything she represented, he agrees to protect Evie on her quest. She knows she can’t totally depend on Jack. If he ever cast that wicked grin her way, could she possibly resist him?
Who can Evie trust?
As Jack and Evie race to find the source of her visions, they meet others who have gotten the same call. An ancient prophesy is being played out, and Evie is not the only one with special powers. A group of twenty-two teens has been chosen to reenact the ultimate battle between good and evil. But it’s not always clear who is on which side.

RELATED: Shadow’s Seduction by Kresley Cole Review


Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Young Adult Fantasy

Graceling meets The Selection in debut novelist Victoria Aveyard’s sweeping tale of seventeen-year-old Mare, a common girl whose once-latent magical power draws her into the dangerous intrigue of the king’s palace. Will her power save her or condemn her? Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood—those with common, Red blood serve the Silver- blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities. Mare is a Red, scraping by as a thief in a poor, rural village, until a twist of fate throws her in front of the Silver court. Before the king, princes, and all the nobles, she discovers she has an ability of her own. To cover up this impossibility, the king forces her to play the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks everything and uses her new position to help the Scarlet Guard—a growing Red rebellion—even as her heart tugs her in an impossible direction. One wrong move can lead to her death, but in the dangerous game she plays, the only certainty is betrayal.


Print Books

The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje Elaine Howlin Literary Blog
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The English PatientThe English Patient by Michael Ondaatje

Historical Fiction

Haunting and harrowing, as beautiful as it is disturbing, The English Patient tells the story of the entanglement of four damaged lives in an Italian monastery as World War II ends. The exhausted nurse, Hana; the maimed thief, Caravaggio; the wary sapper, Kip: each is haunted by the riddle of the English patient, the nameless burn victim who lies in an upstairs room and whose memories of passion, betrayal, and rescue illuminate this book like flashes of heat lightning. In lyrical prose informed by a poetic consciousness, Michael Ondaatje weaves these characters together, pulls them tight, then unravels the threads with unsettling acumen.


BelindaBelinda by Maria Edgeworth

Classics

The lively comedy of this novel in which a young woman comes of age amid the distractions and temptations of London high society belies the challenges it poses to the conventions of courtship, the dependence of women, and the limitations of domesticity. Contending with the perils and the varied cast of characters of the marriage market, Belinda strides resolutely toward independence. Admired by her contemporary, Jane Austen, and later by Thackeray and Turgenev, Edgeworth tackles issues of gender and race in a manner at once comic and thought-provoking. The 1802 text used in this edition also confronts the difficult and fascinating issues of racism and mixed marriage, which Edgeworth toned down in later editions.
About the Series: For over 100 years Oxford World’s Classics has made available the broadest spectrum of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford’s commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, voluminous notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.


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Magazines

Books Ireland

Established in 1976, by Jeremy Addis, Books Ireland is Ireland’s longest-running book magazine and is dedicated to showcasing and reviewing the vibrant range of Irish literature being published at home and abroad. Published bi-monthly, Books Ireland, offers a range of features, reviews, listings and opinions from ‘the world of Irish books’. We cover circa. 1000 Irish books each year.

https://www.booksirelandmagazine.com/


 NOVEMBER ISSUE   Buy  ,   download    or  subscribe   View the sampler  here  The Simple Things

The Simple Things is published monthly and is all about taking time to live well.

We celebrate slowing down, enjoying what you have, making the most of where you live, enjoying the company of friends and family, and feeding them well. We like to grow some of our own vegetables, visit local markets, rummage for vintage finds, and decorate our home with the plunder. We love being outdoors, mindfulness, microadventures and the satisfaction that comes with a job well done.

And we like to think that the small things we do will make a difference in the long run – whether that’s making, upcycling, growing, cooking, escaping or relaxing.

http://www.thesimplethings.com/


Synopsis and covers from Goodreads. Photos from my Instagram @elainehowlin_

Jazzy June Readathon TBR

Jazzy June is a readathon hosted by Books & Munches all about rereading favourite books. There are no tasks or challenges involved and no book quota. You simply reread a few favourites. Check out Kathy’s original post about the readathon here.

My TBR

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Harry Potter, #1) Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone

I’m rereading Harry Potter at the moment as part of a video series I’m doing where I read a chapter a week, listen to a podcast doing the same and post a video about my thoughts on these. My first video for this series will be out on Sunday. Check out my announcement post here.

Falling for a Dancer Falling For A Dancer

I adore this book. It’s set in the 1930’s which is one of my favourite time periods and focuses mainly on home life. The story follows a young woman who becomes pregnant and is married off to a widower in West Cork who has a few kids in need of a mammy. The book is about her life here, going from living in town to a very rural setting, from being free to being responsible for the care of several children and how she tries to find some semblance of happiness and doing something for herself, making decisions for herself.

Magic Bites (Kate Daniels, #1) Magic Bites

This is Book of the Month for one of my Goodreads groups and it works perfectly for the challenge I’m doing in another group plus I loved it the first I read it. So lots of reasons to read this this month. It’s an urban fantasy book about a world where magic and technology are constantly at odds with one another. They kind of sway up and down between being the most powerful force at a time and eventually one of them will rule. When magic is high most technology doesn’t work and vice versa. The series centres on Kate Daniels, a mercenary, who is on the hunt for the murderer of her guardian. This brings into contact with various magical and human factions within the world where she discovers more people are being killed and is pressured by these factions to find the killer. It’s a great introduction to the world and the series just gets better and better.

New Release Tuesday

Happy Book Birthday!

The following are some of the books released today that I think are worth reading.

Shadowsong (Wintersong, #2)Shadowsong (Wintersong #2) by S. Jae-Jones

Six months after the end of Wintersong, Liesl is working toward furthering both her brother’s and her own musical careers. Although she is determined to look forward and not behind, life in the world above is not as easy as Liesl had hoped. Her younger brother Josef is cold, distant, and withdrawn, while Liesl can’t forget the austere young man she left beneath the earth, and the music he inspired in her.

When troubling signs arise that the barrier between worlds is crumbling, Liesl must return to the Underground to unravel the mystery of life, death, and the Goblin King—who he was, who he is, and who he will be. What will it take to break the old laws once and for all? What is the true meaning of sacrifice when the fate of the world—or the ones Liesl loves—is in her hands?

Order now from Book Depository

Only ChildOnly Child by Rhiannon Navin

“Perfect for fans of Room… a heartbreaking but important novel.” —Real Simple

Readers of Jodi Picoult and Liane Moriarty will also like this tenderhearted debut about healing and family, narrated by an unforgettable six-year-old boy who reminds us that sometimes the littlest bodies hold the biggest hearts and the quietest voices speak the loudest.

Squeezed into a coat closet with his classmates and teacher, first grader Zach Taylor can hear gunshots ringing through the halls of his school. A gunman has entered the building, taking nineteen lives and irrevocably changing the very fabric of this close-knit community. While Zach’s mother pursues a quest for justice against the shooter’s parents, holding them responsible for their son’s actions, Zach retreats into his super-secret hideout and loses himself in a world of books and art. Armed with his newfound understanding, and with the optimism and stubbornness only a child could have, Zach sets out on a captivating journey towards healing and forgiveness, determined to help the adults in his life rediscover the universal truths of love and compassion needed to pull them through their darkest hours.

Order now from Book Depository

How to Stop TimeHow to Stop Time by Matt Haig

“The first rule is that you don’t fall in love, ‘ he said… ‘There are other rules too, but that is the main one. No falling in love. No staying in love. No daydreaming of love. If you stick to this you will just about be okay.'” 

A love story across the ages – and for the ages – about a man lost in time, the woman who could save him, and the lifetimes it can take to learn how to live

Tom Hazard has a dangerous secret. He may look like an ordinary 41-year-old, but owing to a rare condition, he’s been alive for centuries. Tom has lived history–performing with Shakespeare, exploring the high seas with Captain Cook, and sharing cocktails with Fitzgerald. Now, he just wants an ordinary life.

So Tom moves back to London, his old home, to become a high school history teacher–the perfect job for someone who has witnessed the city’s history first hand. Better yet, a captivating French teacher at his school seems fascinated by him. But the Albatross Society, the secretive group which protects people like Tom, has one rule: never fall in love. As painful memories of his past and the erratic behavior of the Society’s watchful leader threaten to derail his new life and romance, the one thing he can’t have just happens to be the one thing that might save him. Tom will have to decide once and for all whether to remain stuck in the past, or finally begin living in the present.

How to Stop Time is a bighearted, wildly original novel about losing and finding yourself, the inevitability of change, and how with enough time to learn, we just might find happiness.

Order now from Book Depository

The Art of Vanishing: A Memoir of WanderlustThe Art of Vanishing: A Memoir of Wanderlust by Laura Smith

A young woman chafing at the confines of marriage confronts the high cost of craving freedom and adventure

At twenty-five, as her wedding date approached, Laura Smith began to feel trapped. Not by her fiance, who shared her appetite for adventure, but by the unsettling idea that it was hard to be at once married and free.

Laura wanted her life to be different. She wanted her marriage to be different. And she found in the strangely captivating story of another restless young woman determined to live without constraints both an enticement and a challenge. Barbara Newhall Follett was a free-spirited trailblazer who published her first novel at 11, enlisted as a deck hand on a boat bound for the south China seas at 15 and was one of the first women to hike the Appalachian trail. Then in December 1939, when she was not much older than Laura, she walked out of her apartment on a quiet tree-lined street in Brookline, leaving behind a fraying marriage, and vanished without a trace. Obsessed by her story, Laura set off to find out what had happened.

The Art of Vanishing is a riveting mystery and a piercing exploration of marriage and convention that asks deep and uncomfortable questions: Why do we give up on our childhood dreams? Is marriage a golden noose? Must we find ourselves in the same row houses with Pottery Barn lamps telling our kids to behave? Searingly honest and written with a raw intensity, it will challenge you to rethink your most intimate decisions and may just upend your life.

Order now from Book Depository

Making the Monster: The Science Behind Mary Shelley's FrankensteinMaking the Monster: The Science Behind Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein by Kathryn Harkup

The year 1818 saw the publication of one of the most influential science-fiction stories of all time. Frankenstein: Or, Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley had a huge impact on gothic horror and science fiction genres. The name Frankenstein has become part of our everyday language, often used in derogatory terms to describe scientists who have overstepped a perceived moral line. But how did a 19-year-old woman with no formal education come up with the idea for an extraordinary novel such as Frankenstein? The period of 1790-1820 saw huge advances in our understanding of electricity and physiology. Sensational science demonstrations caught the imagination of the general public, and newspapers were full of tales of murderers and resurrectionists.

It is unlikely that Frankenstein would have been successful in his attempts to create life back in 1818. However, advances in medical science mean we have overcome many of the stumbling blocks that would have thwarted his ambition. We can resuscitate people using defibrillators, save lives using blood transfusions, and prolong life through organ transplants–these procedures are nowadays considered almost routine. Many of these modern achievements are a direct result of 19th century scientists conducting their gruesome experiments on the dead.

Making the Monster explores the science behind Shelley’s book. From tales of reanimated zombie kittens to electrical experiments on human cadavers, Kathryn Harkup examines the science and scientists that influenced Mary Shelley and inspired her most famous creation, Victor Frankenstein. While, thankfully, we are still far from being able to recreate Victor’s “creature,” scientists have tried to create the building blocks of life, and the dream of creating life-forms from scratch is now tantalizingly close.

Order now from Book Depository


I think these all sound amazing. I’m especially looking forward to Shadowsong and Making the Monster.

Swashbuckling Romances

Oh, the thrill of the high seas (we’ll ignore the scurvy bit). Ya gotta love a bit of cheesy romance every now and then, there’s no shame in it. Even Marge chills out with a good swashbuckling adventure once and awhile. The romance genre gets looked down at a lot and this subgenre even more so but who cares what people think as long as it’s fun, right?! Here are some of my top picks from the genre.

Master of Seduction (Sea Wolves, #1) Master of Seduction – Kinley MacGregor

♦Enemies to Lovers ♦Pirates ♦Historical

I love that cover so much!!! It’s so cheesy!! (Kinley MacGregor is a pseudonym for Sherrilyn Kenyon so Dark Hunter fans this might be the one for you.) I expected this book to be a bit of a cheese fest with heaving bosoms and the like but it was much sweeter than that. It’s more like a romantic comedy on the high seas (which is a bit cheesy I guess). Jack and Lorelei set a wager that she can make him fall in love with her before he can get her into the sack. You can imagine the little cat and mouse games that follow. It’s a very entertaining and fun read. One thing that annoys me is that Jack actually walks around calling himself The Master of Seduction…..calm down lad! ★★★☆☆

The Iron Duke (Iron Seas, #1) The Iron Duke – Meljean Brook

♦Steampunk ♦Kick Ass Heroine ♦Suspense

Oh man, I love this book! Since it’s first in a steampunk series there is a good bit of world building but it doesn’t hinder the flow of the story. Mina and Rhys are some of the strongest characters I’ve ever read in a romance. And the story? Such an adventure! And there are zombies but they’re not super gross. Mina is an inspector assigned to a case involving a dead body dropped from the sky onto Rhys’s property. Together they unravel a conspiracy threatening the lives of everyone in England. ★★★★★

The Captain of All Pleasures (Sutherland Brothers, #1) The Captain of All Pleasures – Kresley Cole

♦Enemies to lovers ♦Historical ♦Suspense

This is Cole’s debut novel but it still shows signs of the style she writes with in Immortals After Dark. This book is quite the adventure as well. Derek is taking part in a ship race while holding Nicole prisoner after he believes she attempted to sabotage his ship in the hopes of winning the race herself. Adventure (and lurve) ensue. ★★★★★

 The Price of Pleasure – Kresley Cole

♦Historical ♦Adventure ♦Tortured Hero/Heroine

Sometimes I feel like I might be pushing Kresley Cole on you guys…..but she is awesome so you should really read her books!!! Seriously, my favourite romance author. Anyway, this book is the follow up to The Captain of All Pleasures but you don’t need to read it to enjoy this one. Here we follow Derek’s brother Grant as he seeks out and rescues Victoria whose family was stranded on a desert island years before (I think it was like 7 years). Grant was the stoic responsible brother who finds his restraints tested around Victoria. ★★★★☆

May TBR & Goals

Ok, so I never stick to my TBR. Never. Maybe I sometimes read one or two books from it but I have never managed to stick to an entire TBR. Knowing I won’t stick to one, it seems silly to keep writing them so instead I’m going to list a handful of books I would like to read this month and my other bookish goals.

Books

Kushiel's Dart (Phèdre's Trilogy, #1) Hard Bitten (Chicagoland Vampires, #4) Midnight's Daughter (Dorina Basarab, #1) The Historian Rajmund (Vampires in America, #3) Venom (Elemental Assassin, #3)Angels' Blood (Guild Hunter, #1) Cry Wolf (Alpha & Omega, #1) The Force of Wind (Elemental Mysteries, #3) Heart of Steel (Iron Seas, #2) Deeper Than Midnight (Midnight Breed, #9) Bloodfever (Fever, #2) Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter, #6) Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency (Dirk Gently, #1) River Marked (Mercy Thompson, #6) Beauty of the Beast (Fairy Tale Retellings #1) Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype Captive Prince (Captive Prince, #1)

I expect to read at least two of these books. Some of them I’ve added to my TBR each month since February so we shall see….

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Goals

Even if I don’t read the above books I hope to read at least 10 things in May. I say things because I’m including short stories, novellas, graphic novels, etc. in that. I read about 11 things in April so I should be able to manage this…..hopefully.


I have been so all over the place with posting since I started this blog last year. I really want to get more consistent with posting this month. My aim is to post 5-6 times each week. Which is a lot but I’ve written out a plan to help me. Fingers crossed!


I want to get more active on Instagram as well. I studied photography after school, I really like combining my love of books with my love of photography.

instagram, bookstagram, bookish, books, flowers

 

If you’ve read any of the books I mentioned I’d love to know what you thought of them. I’d also love to know if I mentioned a book above you think I should straight away! (not including Harry Potter, this is my 3rd time reading it anyway)