The Battle for WondLa

by Tony DiTerlizzi

The Battle For WondLa by Tony Diterlizzi

The third and final book in the WondLa trilogy was a sweet little read. Though much was predictable, clearly Eva Nine is going to triumph, but it was an interesting journey. Read More »

The Quality of Mercy

by Barry Unsworth

The Quality of Mercy by Barry Unsworth

I was unaware that this book was the highly anticipated sequel to Sacred Hunger. It only took 12 years to follow-up so I am sure fans of the original book might differ from me in their opinions of the book. Sacred Hunger follows a slave ship and talks a lot about greed, apparently. Well, at least if wikipedia is to be believed. Read More »

Pigs in Heaven

by Barbara Kingsolver

Pigs in Heaven by Barbara Kingsolver

I seem to be burning through these fiction selections that my younger brother got for me. Pigs in Heaven is not a book that would have appealed to me, or that I would have chosen on my own. But as a free book, what a nice addition. A note, this is actually not the first book in a series of books about a lot of the same people so… proceed with caution. Read More »

The First Wives Club

by Olivia Goldsmith

The First Wives Club by Olivia Goldsmith

This book was… just disappointing in many ways. It was worse than meh, but not quite the most horrible thing I’ve ever read. Ringing endorsement, I know.  Read More »

Carter Beats the Devil

by Glen David Gold

Carter Beats the Devil by Glen David Gold

I am surprised that I’d never heard of this book before I read it. It won some awards and sold well, but the first time I saw it was when my little brother dropped of a bin full of books he’d purchased for me at one of those bookstores going out of business sales. Read More »

A Hero For WondLa

by Tony DiTerlizzi

A Hero For WondLa by Tony DiTerlizzi

I almost feel like I should have re-read The Search for WondLa before reading this sequel as it takes up the action where the other book left off. Read More »

V is for Vengeance

by Sue Grafton

V is for Vengeance by Sue Grafton

Another Kinsey Millhone mystery and the series is winding down. It seems that Grafton has decided to stick with telling the narrative from various points of view. I enjoy this, as sometime Kinsey is a bit too cute a narrator for my taste. Read More »

U is for Undertow

by Sue Grafton

U is for Undertow by Sue Grafton

In this installment in the Alphabet Series, Kinsey Millhone gets roped into investigating a possible body dump that happened twenty years ago. Michael Sutton shows up at Kinsey’s office and begs her to investigate a cold case kidnapping/murder. He claims that he has had triggered memories and Kinsey believes him until she realizes Michael Sutton is a highly impressionable young man  who once accused his father of sexual abuse, then recanted, but not before destroying his entire family. So Sutton isn’t the most reliable source. Read More »

A Body to Die For

by Kate White

A Body to Die For by Kate White

Apparently this is the second book in a series, but it came to me free so I dove right in. I guess I have been spoiled by great mystery writers (Tana French, Alan Bradley) or really fun mystery writers (Sue Grafton, Janet Evanovich), because White’s effort fell flat. Read More »

The Importance of Being Seven

by Alexander McCall Smith

The Importance of Being Seven by Alexander McCall Smith

This is the sixth installment in Smith’s 44 Scotland Street Series. I recommend reading these books as a series, and not as stand alone novels. I enjoyed this book immensely and particularly enjoyed Smith’s note to the reader at the beginning of the book. He speaks about the title, The Importance of Being Seven. Bertie, one of our main characters is almost seven. Smith tries to capture that feeling of wanting something very much (to be seven, in Bertie’s case) and not quite being there. Read More »

The Unbearable Lightness of Scones

by Alexander McCall Smith

The Unbearable Lightness of Scones by Alexander McCall Smith

I have taken a significant amount of time off of the the 44 Scotland Street Series, not because I don’t love them, but because they are that particular brand of warm comfort that one remembers when one needs a nice little read that leave the reader feeling uplifted. If you are unfamiliar with the series, please ignore this review straight away and start at the beginning. You will thank me. Read More »

Two for the Dough

by Janet Evanovich

Two for the Dough by Janet Evanovich

This is the second book in the Stephanie Plum series. One has to kind of feel for Stephanie as a heroine because she tries to be tough, but she just isn’t tough enough. Read More »

The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Interrupted Tale

by Maryrose Wood

The incorrigible children of Ashton Place: The Interrupted Tale by Maryrose Wood

It is no secret that I have been a fan of this series of books. Sadly, this is the fourth book meaning there are only two more to go. When I think about where these books could be taking me, I get excited, and that is exactly what books should do.

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The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Unseen Guest

by Maryrose Wood

The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place and the Unseen Guest by Maryrose Wood

I’ve said it before, and I will say it again. These books are charming. I am really looking forward to reading them to my kids in a few years. One thing I enjoy about these books is that there is an underlying mystery that prevails through each book and the reader gets little bits and pieces each time. The reader gets just enough information to start making speculations that are either confirmed or debunked in subsequent books. Read More »

The Night Listener

by Armistead Maupin

The Night Listener by Armistead Maupin

It has been a while since I read something so awful that I debated whether I should finish it or not. Congrats Night Listener, I finished you, but don’t feel better for it. Read More »

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena

by Anthony Marra

A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra

Poor Chechnya. Some countries seem to just have it bad and Chechnya is one of those. I will not delve into political theory or strategy but for those unacquainted with Chechnya’s tragic history, suffice it to say that it is a country surrounded by larger countries with dangerous ambitions, and the Chechen people have paid a hefty price. Read More »

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner’s Dilemma

by Trenton Lee Stewart

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Prisoner's Dilemma by Trenton Lee Stewart

The third installment in The Mysterious Benedict Society is every bit as fun, action-packed, and refreshing as the previous books in the series. I feel like I gush when I write about these books, but they are genuinely wonderful. Stewart’s style is both light and captivating. I find myself cheering audibly for our heroes and cringing whenever the villains get a leg up. I assure you, it is quite amusing to watch. Read More »

Speaking From Among the Bones

by Alan Bradley

Speaking from Among the Bones by Alan Bradley

I truly enjoy reading Flavia de Luce novels. I can’t help it. Bradley manages to capture perfectly inconsistencies that radiate from 11/12 year old girls. He also captures a time that I find fascinating in English history.

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L is for Lawless

by Sue Grafton

L is for Lawless by Sue Grafton

I’m going to ask for you to indulge me while I go off on a bit of a tangent. I saw W is for Wasted in the bookstore as I was doing all my last minute shopping. I am thrilled that I did not start this series back in 1984 when the series  first was released. Sure, I was five then, so I am not sure mystery novels would have been appropriate reading material, but I am glad I arrived at the tale end. Read More »

The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There

by Catherynne M. Valente

The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There by Catherynne M. Valente

 

This is the second book in Valenti’s Fairyland series. I was looking forward to it for a LONG time, but with a bit of trepidation. How does one improve or add to a story that I personally enjoyed so much? Read More »

The Oxford Book of Modern Women’s Stories

edited by Patricia Craig

I was skeptical when I initially got this for my birthday. What constitutes a Modern Women’s Story anyway? Happily, Patricia Craig explains what does it for her, and since she is the editor, thats what made it into the book. Read More »

T is for Trespass

by Sue Grafton

T is for Trespass by Sue Grafton

This is my favorite Kinsey Millhone novel thus far. At first, I was a bit thrown off by the narrative. Grafton switches back and forth between Kinsey and a sociopath that she is dealing with, Solana Rojas (alias). I haven’t known Grafton to do that before, but it made the narrative a bit more eerie which I found interesting. Read More »

One for the Money

by Janet Evanovich

One for the Money by Janet Evanovich

I have a friend, who we’ll call Andrew (that is his name, by the way), who reads a lot of books. I told him that I’d been reading the Alphabet Murder books by Sue Grafton as my ‘bubble gum’ reads. He confessed that he likes to read the Stephanie Plum ‘number books’ for his bubble gum reading. Read More »

A Nasty Piece of Work

by Robert Littell

A Nasty Piece of Work by Robert Littell

I enjoy a good mystery, so I was excited to receive Littell’s novel for Christmas, my excitement faded when I delved in and discovered that, despite success writing stories about the CIA, A Nasty Piece of Work was rife with cliche. Read More »

The Book Thief

by Markus Zusak

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

I often re-read books that I love, but I rarely re-read them so quickly in succession. I finished this, and promptly started reading it the next week aloud, to my husband. I appreciated the opportunity for that second read. Read More »

The Dead Fish Museum: Stories

by Charles D’Ambrosio

The Dead Fish Museum by Charles D'Ambrosio

Ah, the world of short stories. The art of a short story is a difficult one. The author needs to create emotional impact and create interest in a location or character in a short amount of time. Story arcs must move more quickly which is a bit of a challenge. Read More »

Tell the Wolves I’m Home

by Carol Rifka Brunt

Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt

Gag. I feel like Brunt tried to create a modern day To Kill a Mockingbird. Sadly, it just came off as a bit weird. The book starts with June Elbus recounting sitting for a portrait with her sister. Her uncle is a famous painter who happens to be dying of Aids. So a barrel of laughs, right from the beginning. Read More »

J is for Judgment

by Sue Grafton

J is for Judgement by Sue Grafton

I liked this one. The plot seems a bit more complex than other Grafton novels, so that was nice. Also, I know I should always put the disclaimer in here, that I am not reading these in the order they were written, but rather the order that they come into my possession, and this came via a birthday gift from a used bookstore. Read More »

H is for Homicide

by Sue Grafton

H is for Homicide by Sue Grafton

Yet another piece of the alphabet murder books puzzle. These are so easy to read and have really taken over most of my bubble gum reading these past months. Read More »

G is for Gumshoe

by Sue Grafton

G is for Gumshoe by Sue Grafton

Another Sue Grafton. Yes. Out of order… I know. Read More »