Month in Review: April 2024


April was my month for Reading the Theatre, and most of my reading did fall into that theme, with a few exceptions — and some cross-pollination with other challenges, like the Nonfiction Reader and the 1937 Club. I’ll do a full recap in a week or two (I’m still finishing up some viewing).

It was a wonderful month once more, and I also appreciate those who joined in the fun! Be sure to let me know if you posted anything so I can link up.


With an English student I started reading Diary of a Wimpy Kid — easy reading for native speakers, but not that simple for a learner. My student was reassured to hear that it’s not just her! Colloquial language, middle-school slang, and slurred words like “gonna” are challenging, but also useful and important for understanding how people actually talk. So we’ll keep going with Greg’s adventures and see how far they take us.

In my own learning, I’ve almost finished Jim Knopf und Lukas der Lokomotivführer, and been impressed that I can read it mostly without a dictionary…daily effort does pay off, it seems. Next, I’m looking at a copy of Cornelia Funke’s Tintenblut (Inkspell) that I picked up for free. It’s the second part of a trilogy, but maybe that won’t be a problem. Have you read it? What do you think?


Things are in transition all over, with my husband retiring, my son changing gears in his schooling, and me wondering whether I should stay in my current job or seek something else, possibly re-training so I have more opportunities within the Swiss system. It’s all a bit disorienting, and unclear what the future will bring. But I try to have trust and take one day at a time.

My book being published has also left me with something of a creative gap. What should I do to fill it? I have lots of tasks to take up my time, but nothing that’s quite so close to my heart. When something arises, I’ll let you know.

Linked at The Sunday Post at Caffeinated Book Reviewer, the Sunday Salon at Readerbuzz, and the Monthly Wrap-up Round-up at Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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16 thoughts on “Month in Review: April 2024

  1. Best wishes with all the changes at home with family. This new year will be one of continuous good fortune I hope, for all of us.

  2. There are key moments in our lives when everything seems to shift a gear, isn’t there? Best of luck with the changes going on. Have a great week.

    1. One of the things I discovered only when I started teaching English is that our language is full of “phrasal verbs” — usually a verb plus a preposition, often with multiple meanings. E.g. “take off” can literally mean to remove something, or can mean a plane going into the air or to imitate or parody something. These verbs are incredibly hard for learners, but Greg uses them all the time! So we’ve ended up discussing them a lot.

  3. It definitely sounds like your family is in a state of flux with so many things changing. Those times can be exciting but also quite challenging. It’s been almost two years since my husband retired; there was definitely a learning curve involved for both of us to have him at home more. lol. I hope there’s lot of grace to go around in your family in case it’s needed! 🙂

    1. In another six months to a year, I’ll be able to say how it’s gone! But I am hopeful that the change will be good for all concerned.

  4. Transition times can be stressful. I hope this time is a marvelous time of positive changes for you.

    I’m so impressed that you are reading huge books like Inkspell in a new language. I really need to try doing something in another language.

    By the way, thank you for doing Ozathon this year. I’m enjoying reading the Oz books for the first time so much.

    1. Jim Knopf was a long book, too, so it’s given me more confidence now that I’ve gotten almost all the way through it. Just a little bit at a time does make a difference.

      I’m so glad you’re enjoying the Ozathon. It’s been really interesting for me, too.

  5. Ahh! INKSPELL! A beloved favourite of mine! I love the idea of reading it in its original language of publication 🙂 However, it’s probably best to read the first book INKHEART (TINTENHERZ) before the second book. The two books are quite different and if you don’t like the first you might enjoy the second more, but the second does build a lot on the first.

    There is a fourth book coming in the fall, if you do get into it 😉 (Or some googling suggests to me the original German came out last year already…)

    1. I actually thought this was the first book but then looked it up and realized it’s the second. I’ll probably read Inkheart in English and then try Inkspell in German since I have it.

  6. Writing another book might fill in the creative space. That what I would do but, I can understand taking a break from writing.
    Have a great May reading month.

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