Weekly Update for August 15, 2021

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Weekly Update at Introverted Reader

Welcome to my weekly update for August 15, 2021!

We’ve had a rainy week in Anchorage so we haven’t ventured out much. We did go to the Alaska Botanical Gardens last Saturday. It was small but beautiful!

My husband’s cousin and his wife are flying up from San Diego on Thursday to spend a long weekend with us. We were practically locked down with them last winter when California shut down around Christmas. We had a great time together despite the lockdown so we’re excited to see them! We’ve got some big plans! Hopefully the weather cooperates.

Botanical Garden Slideshow

  • Alaska Botanical Garden
  • Truck Full of Cabbage
  • Bumblebee and Flowers
  • Mythmakers Magpie Sculptures
  • Monkshood

All images © Jennifer G. at Introverted Reader 2021

  1. General View
  2. The cabbage and vine (not sure what it is) are actually planted in the truck bed!
  3. My husband was proud of his bumblebee pictures. They sure loved this comfrey! (I think it’s comfrey)
  4. A pair of magpies made from locally sourced materials. One is white, representing light/day and the other is black, representing dark/night. You can read more about them on The Myth Makers’ website.
  5. Monkshood, which, along with fireweed, seems to grow everywhere in Alaska. Isn’t that a perfect name?


Stormsong (The Kingston Cycle #2) by C. L. Polk–3.5 Stars

A Cold Day for Murder (Kate Shugak #1) by Dana Stabenow–3 Stars

Ada Blackjack: A True Story of Survival in the Arctic–4 Stars

Ten Secondary Characters Who Deserve More Love


I read a lot of novellas and graphic novels last week, so this isn’t as many pages as you might think.

Men We Reaped by Jesmyn Ward

Whiskey When We’re Dry by John Larison, read by Sophie Amoss

The Night Masquerade (Binti #3) by Nnedi Okorafor

Arabian Nights (and Days) (Fables #7) by Bill Willingham, Mark Buckingham, et al.

All Systems Red (The Murderbot Diaries #1) by Martha Wells

Harriet the Invincible (Hamster Princess #1) by Ursula Vernon

Currently Reading:

Illuminations: A Novel of Hildegard von Bingen by Mary Sharratt

The Giver (Giver Quartet #1) by Lois Lowry, read by Ron Rifkin

Up Next:

I realized that Banned Books Week is only six weeks away (September 26 – October 2). I try to review banned books every day that week. Last year I procrastinated so I reviewed a lot of picture books and middle grade books. I’m trying to be better prepared this year. That’s why I’m currently listening to The Giver. But I also checked out The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger from the library on Thursday. Added bonus: they’re both on my Classics Club list.

What did your week look like?

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz hosts The Sunday Salon and Kimberly at Caffeinated Book Reviewer hosts Sunday Post. Kathryn at Book Date hosts It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

Other Posts You May Enjoy:


  1. Those are amazing pics! The magpie one is so creative, and the bumblebee shot is a keeper. I think I went through the slideshow thrice. And the book on Hildegard looks pretty good, now I want to drop everything else and read that first — esp. after the praise from Sharon Kay Penman in the blurb.

    1. I didn’t even realize that monkshood and wolfsbane are the same thing until I was looking up monkshood to make sure I had the correct name. It is truly everywhere here. I don’t think they could eradicate it if they tried.

  2. That bumblebee picture is awesome! I was just thinking about banned books week myself and what to do for a display at my school. The Giver is one of my all time favorite books. Have a good week!
    Lisa Loves Literature

    1. I usually like to be atmospheric with my reading too but decided to read Ada Blackjack while I’m in Alaska, even if snow isn’t on the ground. Hopefully we’ll be out of here before that starts! I hope you like it when you read it!

  3. Fantastic photos. I’m glad you are still able to see things and have some friends visit. I think things are getting worse again. We continue to be careful but I think we will be going out of the house less.

    I love the Murderbot books and the newest one was on sale this week, as an Audible daily deal. I love the narrator.

    Anne – Books of My Heart This is my Sunday Post

    1. I’ll have to look for the second Murderbot book on audio then. Thanks for the rec!

      We’re still doing all our outdoor activities but we’re wearing our masks inside for sure now and limiting our exposure to crowds as much as possible.

  4. I love visiting botanical gardens. Your husband got a great shot of that bumblebee! I read The Giver several years ago and thought it was outstanding. I always intend to read it a second time, but haven’t followed through on that. It’s not that long and I can probably read it in a day. Enjoy your visitors. I’ll bet you have a lot of people wanting to visit you guys while you’re in Alaska. 🙂

    1. We have more people visiting us at this assignment than we ever have before! I ran into a traveling radiology tech and mentioned it to her. She said, “Wait until you go to Hawaii. I had 7 people visit me in 3 months!” 😀

  5. Great photos of the Botanical Garden! Your husband should be very proud of his bumblebee picture, it’s a great shot!

    I may be adding Ada Blackjack to my reading list.

    Thanks for mentioning Banned Book Week! I plan on joining this year.

  6. The botanical gardens look like a great place to visit. They opened up a garden here in Houston, but we haven’t gone to visit there yet. That monkshood is especially pretty.

    Ada Blackjack sounds like a good you enjoyed a lot. Fables looks interesting. One of the graphic novels, I bet.

    Why is it that so many great books end up on banned books lists? It’s nice that you can enjoy a couple that fit both the banned book category and the classic category.

    1. It is frustrating to know that people want to remove great books from schools and libraries. Well, I guess I should say any books at all. I just read an article about parents in Leander, TX successfully having books removed from a school book club list. It caught my eye because we stayed in Leander for a few weeks when my husband first started working in Austin.

  7. More beautiful pictures that make me want to go to Alaska as soon as I can. I hope the weather cooperates when your company is there.

    1. Thanks! We’ve got our fingers crossed for the weather. Right now, it’s forecast to be exactly what we don’t want–rain on Friday and Sunday when we have tours planned. We’ve learned not to trust the forecast here until we greet the day with our own eyes though, so there’s still hope!

  8. That bee picture is fantastic! Thanks for sharing the botanica garden with us! Have a wonderful week!

  9. The Giver is such a good book! Thank you for the Banned Book Week reminder. When I was a librarian I was all over that week, but now I tend to remember just as it’s ending.

    Love the photos form the Botanic Garden, you’ve put me in the mind to go to ours.

  10. I love the bee picture (look at the little legs!) and yes! I see the hoods of the monks!

    Fingers crossed for nice weather while your visitors are there.

  11. We get to our gardens as much as possible, loving the peace and calmness and the lovely flowerbeds. It would be a great place to read.

  12. How nice to have visitors coming for a long weekend! I hope the weather will be nice enough to let you do things outside as well as inside – even if I’m sure the most important thing is to just see each other.
    I loved The Giver, and I hope you are enjoying it as well. I finally read The Catcher in the Rye this summer, and I loved it.
    Have a wonderful week ahead and happy reading.

  13. Those Botanical Gardens do look beautiful. We have some here as well, although I haven’t visited them yet. Me thinks it’s time to do so! I also love the sound of ‘Illuminations’, right up my alley, so I will definitely be looking that one up. I also checked out the Myth Makers’ website and their statues are stunning, I really liked ‘Moose Myth’! I hope you have a lovely upcoming week 🙂
    Juli @ A Universe in Words

  14. Hope you have great weather for your visit. And nice pics!

    Ooh I see Murderbot on here. I love those. I still need to read the latest two though…

    Hope you guys have a wonderful weekend!

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