The Mammoth Book of Jacobean Whodunnits

edited by Mike Ashley

The Mammoth Book of Jacobean Whodunnits by Mike Ashley

Full disclosure, historical fiction is high on the list of things I avoid reading. No judgments against those who enjoy it, I just find it a bit silly, trying to force the characters into unlikely scenarios that inevitably are interesting historical events. For this, and many other reasons I’ll enumerate later on, I REALLY disliked The Mammoth Book of Jacobean Whodunnits. Read More »

O is for Outlaw

by Sue Grafton

O is for Outlaw by Sue Grafton

Yes, I am aware that these reviews are woefully out of order. But what was I to do when I found O is for Outlaw at our little free library, what could I do? Read More »

R is for Ricochet

by Sue Grafton

R is for Ricochet by Sue Grafton

Another Kinsey Millhone alphabet mystery. I feel like I enjoy these more the more I read them, but they are very simple literary efforts. I don’t like to read reviews of the books I’ve read before I read them, but somehow I stumbled into some reviews for the later alphabet books by purist fans. They seem to be all up in arms as to the direction Kinsey’s character is going. Read More »

The Alloy of Law

by Brandon Sanderson

The Alloy of Law by Brandon Sanderson

I don’t read a lot of fantasy written for adults. I did; however, really enjoy the Mistborn series. I was intrigued by Sanderson’s idea to write a novel where we actually see a fantasy world that has progressed and we see how technology is used within the framework of magic. Read More »

Q is for Quarry

by Sue Grafton

Q is for Quarry by Sue Grafton

This has been my favorite of the Kinsey Millhone series. I’m not sure if it was the mystery itself I found more compelling, or if I just enjoyed finding out more about Kinsey’s parents, but I burned through this one and felt very satisfied at the end.

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My New American Life

by Francine Prose

My New American Life by Francine Prose

Meh. My New American Life was okay, but not terribly exciting. I did have a chuckle at the back jacket reviews because they call Prose’s ‘social satire’ brilliant. I’ll be the judge of that, because I rarely find social satire brilliant, unless it is written by Stella Gibbons or Jasper Fforde. Read More »

P is for Peril

by Sue Grafton

P is for Peril by Sue Grafton

Kinsey Millhone, lady PI, is back.  And yes, I am aware that I have not yet read O is for Outlaw because I don’t own it and I don’t think it is important enough to go hunt it down in a library. Read More »

The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Hidden Gallery

by Maryrose Wood

The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: The Hidden Gallery by Maryrose Wood

I’d been looking forward to reading the second installment of The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place. It didn’t disappoint. Read More »

N Is for Noose

by Sue Grafton

N is for Noose by Sue Grafton

Full Disclosure: I’ve never read any other Kinsey Millhone mysteries. My husband’s Grandma was trimming her library and apparently decided to get rid of N on down to V, and since I never turn down a free book… I’ll be reviewing more from this series in the future. Full Disclosure Part Two: I think Tana French’s writing has ruined me for all mystery novels. So my review will be jaded by that high standard. Read More »

Louisa May Alcott: An Intimate Anthology

by Louisa May Alcott

Louisa May Alcott: An Intimate Anthology by Lousia May Alcott

Any little girl who ever loved to read and write (guilty!) imagined that they were Jo March. I remember the first time I read Little Women in third grade. I really felt that Louisa May Alcott was the greatest writer on earth. I still re-read the Little Men/Little Women/Jo’s Boys books every couple of years. Read More »

La’s Orchestra Saves the World

by Alexander McCall Smith

La's Orchestra Saves the World by Alexander McCall Smith

I adore Alenxander McCall Smith. Really. Adore him. When I lived in Scotland I shelled out a pretty penny, or pence, to hear him speak. He was charming. His books can be described as charming. La’s Orchestra… a mix of charming and melancholy, which is a mix I can get behind. Read More »

I Am Half-Sick of Shadows

by Alan Bradley

I Am Half-Sick of Shadows by Alan Bradley

Flavia de Luce is back in action. I’ve actually owned this book for a year (exactly) but I saved it to read during the Christmas season. Read More »

Broken Harbor

by Tana French

Broken Harbor by Tana French

Tana French has done it again. Or rather, she’s done it as well as she did the first time around with In The Woods.
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The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making

by Catherynne M. Valente

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente

This book gets the highest grade possible because it was awesome. You should read it. The end… Read More »

American Adulterer: A Novel

by Jed Mercurio

American Adulterer: A Novel by Jed Mercurio

I hated this book. That is all you should really know, but let me go into the details. This “novel” details the life of JFK beginning with his Inauguration as President of the United States until his assassination. Mercurio calls it a novel in order to not do the due diligence type of research that a non fiction book of the same topic would require. Read More »

The Sense of an Ending

by Julian Barnes

The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes

I approach winners of the Man Booker Prize with caution, having been lead astray down that path ONE two many times. Read More »

Death in the Andes

by Mario Vargas Llosa

Death in the Andes by Mario Llosa

Confession,  I bought this book because my sister-in-law is Peruvian, and the author is a Nobel Prize Winner from Peru. Other than that, meh, I wasn’t sure what it would have in store for me. We all know my reluctance to read books by Nobel Laureates. Or perhaps you don’t. In that case, I generally find books written by Nobel Prize winners to be pretentious and not that great. There are a few exceptions, but this wasn’t one of them. Read More »

The Entomological Tales of Augustus T. Percival: Petronella Saves Nearly Everyone

by Dene Low

The Entomological Tales of Augustus T. Percival: Petronella Saves Nearly Everyone by Dene Low

You can ask anyone who knows me. I am easy to buy gifts for. Books and/or chocolate and you will get no complaints from me. My youngest brother got me this little gem for my last birthday. Apparently, he met the author somewhere and she chatted him up, and bam… off to Amazon.com he went. Read More »

The Green Bough

by Ann Ritner

The Green Bough by Ann Ritner

I love my husband… and every time I read one of these Peoples Book Club books that he found at a yard sale, I remind myself that I love him. I enjoy the fact that HE enjoys the fact that I love old books. As a result I plow my way through these ‘Christian fiction’ books with a smirk on my face. The Green Bough was no exception. Read More »

Fablehaven: Secrets of the Dragon Sanctuary

by Brandon Mull

Fablehaven: Secrets of the Dragon Sanctuary by Brandon Mull

This is my favorite book in the Fablehaven series thus far. In my experience the books tend to start out slow, and pick up speed towards the end of the first third, then they gain speed, and by the end is rolling so rapidly that it seems like Mull is rushing to get everything in that he had planned. The fourth book actually kept a nice pace throughout and it ended in a bit of a cliff hanger which makes you want to read the fifth book as soon as possible. Read More »

Fablehaven: Grip of the Shadow

by Brandon Mull

Fablehaven: Grip of the Shadow by Brandon Mull

I approached the third Fablehaven novel as a fully invested (less skeptical) reader, and as a result I enjoyed this installment. The third book begins right where the second book ended, I am not sure that I enjoy that irregular timing, but is serves to move the story along swiftly and there is nothing technically wrong with choosing to start a book then, it was just unexpected. Read More »

Fablehaven: Rise of the Evening Star

by Brandon Mull

Fablehaven: Rise of the Evening Star by Brandon Mull

I will admit after the first Fablehaven, I was a bit disappointed. I found a promising magical world, but characters that were slightly annoying. I was unsure if it was because Mull had a plan for the young characters to mature, develop, and grow on you. I decided to continue with the series on the hope (and hey, my brother lent me all the books so I had nothing to lose) and was glad that I did. The second Fablehaven book is much better than the first. Read More »

Death in the Stocks

by Georgette Heyer

Death in the Stocks by Georgette Heyer

I didn’t like this book. There, I said it. It feels almost unfaithful saying something harsh about Georgette Heyer’s work. The woman practically formed every idea I have about Regency Era living, but I have to be honest, her mysteries aren’t great. I find she tries to be too clever, and too flippant, and too trite. Read More »

Catching Fire

by Suzanne Collins

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins


I was pleasantly survived with The Hunger Games and eagerly read the second installment. This might have tainted my opinion of the book. If I review several books in a series, I try to review right after I read them, or not read them one after another. I find it hard to look at each novel as its own separate entity without comparing it to the others. Catching Fire, just might be a casualty of how much I enjoyed the first book. Read More »

Why Shoot a Butler

by Georgette Heyer

Why Shoot a Butler by Georgette Heyer


I’ve made no secret that I generally dislike Heyer mysteries. This book is the rare exception. Why Shoot a Butler is another mystery set in a country weekend estate type setting with a lot of wealthy people hanging around each other seemingly shocked about a murder that has happened. I would hazard a guess that all Heyer’s mysteries have this similar setting, and sometimes it works. Read More »

The Mysterious Benedict Society and The Perilous Journey

by Trenton Lee Stewart

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey by Trenton Lee Stewart


When I think of the Mysterious Benedict Society books the words that come to mind are charming and whimsical. The second installment only increased my enjoyment in the series. This novel begins where the last adventure ended. Read More »

The Hunger Games

by Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

I resisted The Hunger Games for a long time. Why, you ask? Well, it seemed like it was the Twilight crowd that was jumping on the band wagon and saying how great the books were. No offense against that crowd, but Twilight isn’t exactly my thing. Read More »

Mockingjay

by Suzanne Collins

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins

So we’ve finally come to the last installment of The Hunger Games Series. Straight off, I was disappointed. The story was not compelling in its entirety, nor was Katniss very likable, coherent, or believable in this last book. There are scenes within the book that I thought lived up to the promise of the original idea, but I found Collins using some pretty cheap literary devises to move time along quickly. Read More »

Footsteps in the Dark

by Georgette Heyer

Footsteps in the Dark by Georgette Heyer

My love of Georgette Heyer is no secret, but the more of her mysteries I read, the more disappointed I become. Read More »

The Graveyard Book

by Neil Gaiman

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman


I am always on the lookout for good children’s literature. I enjoy kids books that tackle interesting concepts without getting heavy handed and overly preachy. A children’s book should also be fun. Neil Gaiman’s book mingles fantasy and adventure with a bit of silliness. Read More »