Week 38 and 39 – 2017

Hello my fellow book lovers! I hope you’re enjoying the weekend. I failed in Week 38 and only finished 1 book. Week 38 covers September 18 – 24, mostly because my adorable niece came for a visit (she brought her parents too). According to my nearly 3 year old niece, the best things in Boston are sharks at the aquarium and riding on the bus. She actually started a sing along on the bus (you can imagine the chosen song) and got strangers involved. It was quite adorable. Week 39 covers September 25 – October 1 and was a pit more productive.

Week 38

Time and Again by Jack Finney – I borrowed this as an e-book from the Boston Public Library. This is Time #1. This was a book club pick. I knew when we picked it that it was probably a terrible idea. I actually sort of hated this book. It was ok, but it is so out of date that it was hard to get into. It was published in 1970 (before I was born) and I’m not sure it has stayed terribly relevant. The entire premise is that a certain type of suggestible personality can, when hypnotized, think their way into a previous time. The plan is to observe and not change anything. I don’t really know what to say about this. The only redeeming factor is a comparison between how engaged people were in their lives before the invention of television and how unengaged and boring they had become by 1970. I would love to know what the author would think of us now with all of the smartphones. I wonder if he’s even still alive…. Nope. Died in 1995. He missed the smartphone experience entirely. I’m giving it 2 stars.

Week 39

Where They Found Her by Kimberly McCreight – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL. This was definitely more my thing. In this, an infant is found dead on a college campus and one of the main narrators is called in by her boss to write a story about it, since her coworkers are unavailable, but the problem is that she is still dealing with the stillborn birth of her second child. The other narrator is a teen that is struggling to find her mother who disappeared with all of the rent money as well as her savings. There was also a murder that happened on the same spot where the baby was found, almost 2 decades previously, so in the land of fiction, it is high time to sort out what happened with that unsolved crime as well. This is actually really well written and the plot is well thought out. I liked another of this author’s books and this was definitely not a disappointment. I’m giving it 4 stars.

Since We Fell by Dennis Lehane – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL. This is one of my favorite authors. I have been to one of his book signings. I think he’s a star. This book is sort of all over the place, but in a good way. Rachel has been fired from her job as a journalist after an on-air breakdown in which she acted like a crazy person. Her marriage is over. Then she runs into an acquaintance from her past on the day her divorce is finalized, and quickly ends up married again, but this time to her protector. She has a bit of agoraphobia and is starting to make a turn around when she sees her new husband in the Back Bay when he is actually supposed to be in London on a business trip. She starts following him around and tries to get information from his business partner. Is he really up to something? Perhaps leading a double life? Did she even really see him at all? It’s all very engaging. This sucked me right in. I’m giving it 4 stars.

The Breakdown by B.A. Paris – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL. I’m going to start this one by saying that this author’s first book, Behind Closed Doors was so good that it would have taken quite a feat to have outdone that one. This book, while quite good, couldn’t help but be a little bit of a let down. In this, a teacher is on her way home after celebrating the end of the school year and takes a short cut through the woods in the dark and the rain. When she passes another car that is stopped, she pauses, but sees no sign that the other driver needs assistance and continues on her way. The next day, it’s all over the news that a woman was found murdered in her car. Then it turns out that she actually knows the victim. The guilt starts to eat her alive and she begins to forget things. She thinks that the dementia that plagued her mother has started in on her. You’ll probably guess what happens, ultimately, but I won’t spoil it for you. I liked the book, but I had it all figured out way too early. I’m giving it 3 stars.

Lost Boy by Christina Henry – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL (shocking, right?). This is the story of Captain Hook. It tells the story of what Peter Pan did to his first, most favored Lost Boy and what ultimately made him become the villain in Peter Pan’s story. You’ll have to decide who the villain really is in this retelling of Peter Pan. I really like this author’s very dark retellings of fairy tales. Her Alice and Red Queen were really quite good as well. I’m looking forward to seeing where she will go next. I hope she picks something that hasn’t been done a million times, but whatever it is, I will read them because they are brilliant and edgy and very different from most of the others. In a field that gets a lot of play, she stands out from the crowd. I’m giving this one 4 stars.

And that’s it for Weeks 38 and 39. As always, any feedback you may provide is encouraged. I also like when you tell me you have a different opinion, so if you do, please share. I look forward to hearing from all of you.


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Week 37 – 2017

It’s another rainy day here in Boston, but an excellent opportunity to get caught up on a bunch of indoor projects. Week 37 covers September 11 – 17. As always, feedback is encouraged.

Still Life by Louise Penny – I borrowed this as an e-book from the Boston Public Library. It is Chief Inspector Armand Gamache #1. This is one of those series you see everywhere and I was intrigued enough to want to try the first one. There were some really funny moments. Obviously not a comedy, though. This tells the story of a small town in Quebec and the murder of an older woman who was quite eccentric. She may have seen something or she may have caused anger when she stuck up for her friends or the estranged niece may have reason to think she has inherited the property or it could have just been a hunting accident. You will have to read the book to find out. I’m giving it 3 stars.

Made for Love by Alissa Nutting – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL. I believe it was one of my recommendations. This author is quickly becoming one of my favorites. This one reminded me of reading Christopher Moore. The main character has fled her crazy husband who wanted to put a chip in her head so that he could see everything that she experienced during the day. She moves into an elderly trailer park community with her dad who has recently purchased a life sized sex doll. There is another character that seduces women in order to take all of their money and then falls in love with a dolphin. It’s very funny. And weird. And I loved it. I’m giving it 4 stars.


Only One Life by Sara Blaedel – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL. This is Louise Rick #3. (Though the first doesn’t seem to have been translated to English yet. This was a book club pick because another club member and I really liked The Forgotten Girls. I’m actually going back to Denmark later this year, so it’s fun to read some of the local literature before I go. It helps that this author is quite an amazing story teller. This definitely follows the translation rule. Why would they bother to translate it if it wasn’t quite good? In this one, a young girl is found in the water, anchored by concrete. It seems like the family may be involved in an honor killing. I did sort of figure this out, but not until close to the end. My suspect list was long at the beginning, but some were easily eliminated. I’m giving it 3 stars.

That’s it for Week 37. Week 38 is only one book, so it’ll get combined with Week 39. As always, let me know what you think or if you have any recommendations. I love hearing from all of you.



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Week 36 – 2017

Hi All! It’s another rainy day here in Boston. i hope the sun is shining wherever you may be. I am a little behind schedule because I had visitors last week. I also only finished 1 book, so there will be a combined list here in the near future. Week 36 covers September 4 – 10. As always, your feedback is treasured and do not be afraid to have a differing opinion. I like those too.

How the White Trash Zombie Got Her Groove Back by Diana Rowland – I borrowed this as an e-book from the Boston Public Library. This is White Trash Zombie #4. Do you ever read books purely for entertainment? That is why I thoroughly enjoy this series. I often get recommendations for really good books, the kind that make you think or have an important message, but sometimes I just want to be entertained. These are thoroughly entertaining. In this one, the gang is under siege and their leader has been kidnapped and of course they’d like to get him back. I did learn something. A group of zombies is called a krewe, but that may be a Cajun term. I thoroughly enjoyed this installment. I’m giving it 3 stars.

A Treacherous Curse by Deanna Raybourn – I received this as an e-book from the publisher via NetGalley. It is Veronica Speedwell #3. I really liked this one. It takes the Victorian era Egyptology craze and creates a mystery and a curse surrounding an archaeological dig and transfers all of it to London. I’m not explaining this well. It’s a bit like the Amelia Peabody mysteries without having to go to Egypt. The dig has already been abandoned and the people that have thus far survived the Curse of Anubis have returned to London. Stoker’s name is likely to come up in the press because of his association with the missing man who has been suspected of stealing the most valuable artifact from the dig. So Veronica and Stoker insert themselves into the investigation, mostly to find the missing man and keep the remains of Stoker’s reputation in tact. This series is endlessly entertaining. I definitely recommend it. I’m giving it 4 stars.

Sunshine by Robin McKinley – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL. This is an excellent stand alone vampire novel. The main character, Sunshine, is kidnapped by vampires and chained in a room with a hungry vampire. She survives the long night and finds herself trying to save the vampire. There is something quite wonderful about this story. Maybe it’s the “things are not always as they appear” theme. Or it could just be the awesomeness of the heroine. Maybe it’s a whole host of things that pull this together and make a really great story. I’m giving it 4 stars.



My pace has definitely slowed. I normally get through more than 3 in a week, but that seems to be the new norm. Let me know what you think or if you have any recommendations.

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Week 35 – 2017

Hi, All! I just got back from book club and this seems like a good time to submit last week’s book list. Week 35 covers August 28 – September 3. I didn’t finish quite as many books as I would have liked, but that just means the following week will be even more full, right? As always, feedback is appreciated and encouraged.

Splintered by A.G. Howard – I borrowed this as an e-book from the Boston Public Library. This is Splintered #1. It is a retelling of Alice in Wonderland. Sort of. It takes the basic premise and basically acts like a sequel. The many times removed descendant of the original Alice has to return to Wonderland in order to break the family curse. She can her bugs and flowers talking and her mother is locked in an asylum after an accident that happened when Alyssa was young. She will either go crazy and share the fate of her mother, who has just been signed up for electro-shock therapy, or save her mother and herself. I quite liked it and I plan to read the next in the series. I’m giving it 4 stars. I love Alice in Wonderland retellings. It’s absolutely one of my favorite stories.

Throne of Jade by Naomi Novik – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL. This is Temeraire #2. These are set in an alternate past during the time of Napoleon. As in, Napoleon is terrorizing Europe (as he actually did) and there are dragons (obviously not so much). In this, the Chinese royal family wants England to return their prized Celestial, known to the English as Temeraire, to his rightful place among his kind in China. Temeraire refuses to be separated from Laurence. The team sails from England to China, hoping that the time this will take will give them the opportunity to change their minds. Of course, many things happen on the way to China and continues once they arrive. It’s all very exciting. I look forward to the next adventure. I’m giving it 4 stars.

See Jane Die by Erica Spindler – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL. This is Stacy Killian #1. This one was really good, but I had the murder suspects narrowed down too early on. Although the one I was convinced was the major player, was actually secondary to the one I thought was probably secondary. Does that make sense? I had them backward, but I still knew who it was. Anyway, so Jane was run over by a speedboat as a young teen and it changed her life drastically. Now as an adult, her life is going really well, she’s rich, she loves her husband, and her art is a success. Oh and she is expecting a baby. Then women that are associated with her husband start being murdered and he is arrested. Then she is receiving threatening notes from a mystery person. Her sister (Stacy) had been involved in the initial investigation. After being forced to step away, Stacy’s main concern becomes Jane’s safety. I’m only giving it 3 stars because I figured it out too early. I may read another in this series.

That’s it for Week 35. Week 36 isn’t looking too full yet either. I need to get cracking…. Let me know what you think or if you have any suggestions.

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Week 34 – 2017

Hello, All! Today is a lovely rainy day here in Boston. I hope wherever you are it is nicer. The good thing about the rain is that it is an excuse to stay inside and read. I have also been tasked with finally watching Jaws because it is now on Netflix. That doesn’t honestly sound that appealing, but I promised a friend that I would watch it. But maybe not this weekend. We’ll see. Week 33 covers August 21 – 27. This should further help to improve my NetGalley percentage. Hopefully. As always, I love to hear from you. Feedback of any sort is encouraged.

Her Darkest Nightmare by Brenda Novak – I borrowed this as an e-book from the Boston Public Library. This is Evelyn Talbot #1. I had read a prequel to this series previously and I thought it was quite good. This falls into that weird genre called Romantic Suspense. Basically it’s a thriller with romance. Evelyn was tortured and left for dead by her boyfriend as a teenager and grew up to be a criminal psychiatrist. She studies serial killers. And the prison she has established for that purpose is in a remote part of Alaska. I bet you can’t see anything going wrong there. There is a lot going on in this book. Her friends are turning up dead, the local cop would like to be romantically involved, one of her coworkers is out to discredit her, there is shady stuff going down at the prison, one of the inmates escapes, and there’s lots of snow. Do you think that’s enough? I bet I missed some things. I’m giving it 4 stars.

Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker – I received this as an e-book from the publisher via NetGalley. This one is really good. It isn’t creepy exactly, but it’s pretty twisty. Emma and Cass disappear and 3 years later, only Cass reappears. Cass tells the story of how they were taken away and kept isolated on an island with no contact other than a couple and their errand runner. How did Cass get away? Will Emma be there when they finally find the island? The FBI is on a search for the island, the couple, the boatman and Emma and Emma’s daughter. Will they find any of them? Is any of it real? Perhaps Cass is crazy like her mother suggests. I really liked this because I didn’t have it all figured out until the end. I definitely recommend it. I’m giving it 5 stars. 

Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier – I borrowed this as an e-book from the BPL. I originally read this as a young teen. I think I know now where my fascination with pirates began. Bored with London society, Dona takes her children and flees to the manor house in the country. There are many oddities apparent when they arrive. Where are all the servants? Who has been sleeping in her bed? Where does the servant go in the middle of the night? Then she stumbles upon a pirate ship in the creek on the property and makes the acquaintance of the pirate captain. Adventure ensues. I may have enjoyed this more as an adult. I’m glad I decided to reread it. I rarely reread anything these days. I’m giving it 4 stars.

The Dream Keeper’s Daughter by Emily Colin – I received this as an e-book from the publisher via NetGalley. This was quite an interesting story and I liked it a lot. Isabel’s mother has been missing for six year and then the day after she tells her boyfriend Max that she is pregnant, he disappears as well. Eight years later, on an archaeological dig in Barbados, Isabel receives a call from Max and then starts having dreams about him and then she finds her mother’s necklace in the dig. But how could her mother have been in Barbados and especially in the 1800s. When she returns to South Carolina, her daughter also starts having strange dreams of her father. This is just the opening. I don’t want to give away spoilers. The story is compelling and the historical detail was very interesting. I found it compelling. If you can get your mind around the time travel aspect, or if that appeals to you anyway, I definitely recommend this book. I’m giving it 4 stars.

And that’s it for Week 34. It just occurred to me that this is Week 35 and I am finally caught up. Woot, Woot! I’m pretty pumped. Let me know what you think. I need to get back to reading or I’m only going to have 3 for the next post.

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Week 33 – 2017

Hello, Fellow Book Lovers! I hope you are all enjoying the weekend. I’m a little sad that summer is actually over, but only because time seems to pass too quickly. I do love the Fall. Week 33 covers August 14 – 20. As always, feedback is encouraged. I love it when you all reach out to me, even when you disagree.

I Know a Secret by Tess Gerritsen – I received this as an e-book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is Rizzoli & Isles #12. This latest installment in the Rizzoli and Isles series is really good. I love this series. The characters, at this point, are really well developed. The TV series of the same name has diverged from the book series, but I enjoy both of them a great deal in their own ways. In this latest book, people are being murdered in an unknown manner and only classified as murder because they are staged postmortem according to the death of the saints associated with their birth dates. Rizzoli struggles to find a connection between the victims and it finally leads back 20 years to the disappearance of a 9 year old girl. I’m going to stop there before I reveal too many spoilers. I thought the story was brilliantly weaved. I recommend the entire series and this one stands out as one of the best. I’m giving it 4 stars.

A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab – I borrowed this as an e-book from the Boston Public Library. This is Shades of Magic #2. This series is quite good. The author has quite an impressive imagination. These tell of different lands that exist in the same time and space, but are entirely different and only a skilled magician can move between them. In this installment, Lily as tricked her way onto a pirate ship and is making a name for herself among the crew. The captain is also teaching her magic. The princes, Rhy and Kell, are dealing with the consequences of their new bond and preparing for a magic tournament. It is all very exciting. It also ends on a cliffhanger, so you can be sure to see my take on the next book in the not too distant future. I’m giving this 4 stars.

The Stolen Marriage by Diane Chamberlain – I received this as an e-book from the publisher via NetGalley. This book was really hard to put down. Imagine making a mistake that changes your life completely. That is what happens in this book. Tess is on her dream path. She’s about to become a nurse and marry her childhood sweetheart and then everything becomes totally derailed and she ends up married to a stranger and living in a small town where everyone sees her as an interloper and gold digger. She nearly dies in the prologue, so I guess we know that she will ultimately persevere. I really liked this book and I am grateful to the friend that turned me onto this author. This definitely gets my recommendation. I’m giving this one 5 stars.

That is it for Week 33. It doesn’t seem like a lot to me and then I remember that normal people might read 3 books in an entire month. Let me know what you think or if I have convinced you to add any of these to your to read list.


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Week 32 – 2017

Greetings Book Lovers! Thank you for taking the time to read this. I appreciate all of you and I hope you are all well. I’m going to bounce right in. Week 32 covers August 7 – 13. Let me know what you think, as feedback is always appreciated.

The Last Days of Dogtown by Anita Diamant – I borrowed this as an e-book from the Boston Public Library. I found this appealing mostly because I know where it is. I have not been there. The idea of an abandoned town intrigues me. What happened to the people that lived there? Why did they leave? Did something catastrophic happen? What make a town just die? In this case, I just think it’s a place that isn’t that inhabitable. The land is rocky and it would probably take too much money and effort to change that, despite its proximity to Gloucester. In this novel, the author uses the legends associated with the town to create a story of the last people that were living there and how and why they may have left. I thought it was quite good. I’m giving it 4 stars.

The Heart’s Invisible Furies by John Boyne – I received this as an e-book from the publisher via NetGalley. This was an incredible story. This may be my new favorite for the year. I have read a couple of books by this author, but usually it’s YA fiction centered on WWII. His YA books are normally horrifying. This is adult fiction, so don’t expect him to hold anything back. This tells the story of Cyril and what it was like to grow up in Ireland as a homosexual. But it is also about the church being unforgiving and what popular opinion can do to someone’s reputation. It also deals with prejudice and so many other things. This story is really well written and it is compelling. I had a hard time putting it down. I was actually late to a party because I HAD to finish. I’m not going to give all of the details. This book will probably make you cry at least once. Regardless of that fact, I definitely recommend this one. I’m giving it 5 stars.

And that is it for Week 32.

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