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Topic: WOW - February 2014! What are we reading?

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Subject: WOW - February 2014! What are we reading?
Date Posted: 2/1/2014 9:10 AM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2008
Posts: 10,212
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I seem to have become very busy and I'm still "listening" to Seven For a Secret by Lyndsay Faye. I really like her books and this one is no exception. Just finished a non-fiction titled A Delusion of Satan by Frances Hill which is probably the best book I ever read on the Salem Witch "Hunt".

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 2/1/2014 9:17 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,088
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I guess I should be ashamed, I've only done 81 reviews.  My excuse is I do reviews, not copy the back cover.  Also, there have been times when I was going to do one and saw what had been written and said, yep, I agree so why do a review.

I finished Blacklist / Sara Paretsky.  I have next V. I. on my shelf already.  Also finished Goodbye, Ms Chips / Dorothy Cannell.  Both are challenge books and I had them started in January but somehow couldn't get into them.  I have Sherlock Holmes vs Dracula / Loren Estleman and Murder at Bent Elbow / Kate Bryan.

Becky I think you'd like Murder at Bent Elbow.  It's a historical with a strong female MC.  She was a Pinkerton agent and became disgusted because she wasn't given "juicy" assignments.  She goes to San Francisco, hooks up with her male cousin and starts her own discrete inquiry agency.  My review - there are only three in the series and I'm about halfway thru the first and want the others, right now!   

 

Becky

Date Posted: 2/1/2014 9:39 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 3,090
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Oh Geri --- NOT ANOTHER SERIES!!!!  It sounds right up my alley for sure.  Will put it on my wishlist straight away.

On a personal note, I have finally found the courage to sell David's little red Mercedes two-seater convertible.  It has not yet been delivered, so I cannot say whether the tears will flow or not.  It is a 2002 model and has only 27,000 miles on it.  It will soon be bringing someone else joy in driving in fine weather.  Hard to explain the difficulty in "getting rid" of material things that were so much a part of the human one has lost.  I have been very blessed in not having had to do any of it immediately.

Date Posted: 2/1/2014 2:35 PM ET
Member Since: 7/29/2008
Posts: 1,520
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Spent most of a snowy Friday reading!  Finished Taboo/Casey Hill. Was not familiar with this author, but very good book (IMO!).  MC is an FBI-trained forensic investigator from CA who goes to Dublin to try to bring the Irish crime lab into the 21st century.  There are several seemingly unrelated murders and/or suicides, but, with trace evidence, she believes they are connected and tries to convince the police of this.  More murders and the police finally believe her.  I really liked it and have put the next two on my WL.   If you like books with a forensic bent, you would probably enjoy this one.

Then, for a lighter bit, Nose for Trouble/Doranna Durgin.  This is a cozy with the MC a veterinarian  in Flagstaff, AZ.   The one review was negative because she didn't like books where animals talked.  I don't either, but the only animal character is his dog Sully and every now and then you do get some of his thoughts.  But, they are not human type thoughts...more like doggie thoughts...food, nap, smell...one word type of thing and it didn't bother me.  And, Sully doesn't come up with clues, save the MC or solve the murder!!!  Thought it would be a series, but appears this is the only one she has written with these characters. 

Becky...Material things are not just material things...they are memories.  So, you are not just getting rid of a car...it seems like you are getting rid of memories.  But, they are still there and can never be lost. 
 



Last Edited on: 2/1/14 2:40 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Date Posted: 2/1/2014 3:17 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
Posts: 39,335
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I am reading a very enjoyable cozy Pecan Pies and Homicides (Charmed Pie Shoppe, Bk 3) :: Ellery Adams. Ellery Adams is one of my favorite cozy writers, cook mysteries and intellegent characters. This one has good recipes in it too:)

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 2/1/2014 3:22 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,088
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Marla, I checked on FF and there are more!  Scent of Danger (2008)  Tracking Murder (2012

Becky, good for you!  As Marla says you're getting rid of the car but the memories will be with you forever.

We are under a winter advisory.  Predicted snow to start a 8 this morning and it did.  They say we could get to 12" and since it hasn't stopped and it's 3 in the afternoon they could be right.  Thank goodness I found the snow guy!

I forgot to mention I'm reading Outlaw / Donald Angus.  It's a Robin Hood story as told from the Alan Dale view point.  He supposedly joined the band of merry men when he was 13 and Robin was about 20. 

Date Posted: 2/1/2014 5:41 PM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 3,090
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Geri Darling --- the author is Angus Donald and in the Historical Fiction section we refer to him as "our Angus".  Actually "our Jeanne" in this forum likely  has the most "personal" relationship with him.  We have the devil of a time obtaining his books.  They seem to be printed in extremely small doses and rarely get to the U.S.  Jeanne and I usually get ours from Amazon.UK or The Book Depository.  Although a bit brutal for a cozy reader, it will be interesting to see your take on them.  Many of us in "Historical Fiction" just love them, especially "our Jeanne", but as I said, she does have the "relationship" with "our Angus" (hee hee)....

Thank you Marla and Geri for being so kind about the sale of the car --- the memories are the treasure.

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 2/1/2014 7:18 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,088
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Becky, yes it is.  I didn't pay attention to the way the author name was listed on Amazon.  Have you read this particular book?  So far it's keeping my interest.  Of course I read the first Robin Hood book when I was 10.  I think I always had a little crush on Alan Dale.  cheeky  I'm not sure how I came across it.  It's one of my olde choices.  I'm cleaning up my Kindle TBR too.   

Date Posted: 2/1/2014 9:29 PM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2008
Posts: 10,212
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Aw Geri, the way Angus writes about Robin is like he is the "godfather' of Sherwood Forest. In the subsequesnt books, Robin wanders far afield from Sherwood. I love the history and the action in these books and I hope that you enjoy them too! Angus Donald is one of my 5 most favorite authors!!!

I don't know Angus personally except through his blog, but I stumbled upon his first book and I was hooked! He is a great author and the books are wonderful reads!!



Last Edited on: 2/1/14 9:38 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/2/2014 4:29 AM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2013
Posts: 639
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I'm halfway through Three Graves Full by Jamie Mason. It was one of the nominees I was checking out for the Award category of the challenge. A woman's fiance disappears and his car is found torched, but without a body. A guy kills someone and buries him in his back yard. A year later he hires a landscaping crew to clean up his front yard. They uncover a body buried in the weedy flower garden on the side of the house. The police are called and they uncover another body buried in the flower garden on the other side of the house (symmetry), both buried by a previous owner. From there the book reads like it could be the plot of a new Coen Brothers flick, reminiscent of their early film Blood Simple. If you liked that movie, or Fargo, you probably will enjoy this book..

Date Posted: 2/2/2014 9:09 AM ET
Member Since: 4/22/2005
Posts: 5,473
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I'm on a Kindle library kick lately and am reading Winter at Death's Hotel by Kenneth Cameron. Louisa Doyle, wife of the Sherlock Holmes author, stumbles on a mystery while staying at hotel with her husband. He is touring America and this happens on their first stop. Enjoying it so far. Nice historical, lots of police corruption in New York that Teddy Roosevelt is trying to stop. Louisa and her maid stay behind because of a fall Louisa took right before boarding the train and against her husband's express demands, she starts nosing around and stirs up a hornet's nest.

Date Posted: 2/2/2014 9:51 AM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2008
Posts: 10,212
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I have Winter at Death's Hotel  waiting in the wings for me to read, Mary. Glad to hear that you are enjoying it!

Date Posted: 2/2/2014 11:53 PM ET
Member Since: 7/29/2008
Posts: 1,520
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Well, that was embarrassing for Denver!!!!  As many of you know, I'm not a sports fan so I planned on reading during the Super Bowl, but figured my husband would watch it.  I was doing some other stuff when it started and when I came into the living room about 45 min into the game, the TV was off and he was reading.  I asked why and he said he wasn't going to watch the disaster!!!!  The one really funny thing...the Broncos' mascot is a beautiful horse named Thunder.  He circles the field whenever they score.  I guess when the Broncos did score, he came out of the tunnel and refused to go onto the field and the rider couldn't convince him!  Probably decided he didn't want any part of the disaster that was happening on the field!! LOL  I did, however, watch the Puppy Bowl!!  The pups did better than the Broncos!!!

That aside, I read Blackman's Coffin/Mark de Castrique.  Very good.  Am going to find the others in the series.


 

Date Posted: 2/3/2014 9:44 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 3,090
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Marla --- I am a Denver fan and I stuck it out, mostly because I wanted to see the commercials.  At some point I began muting the game and watching the commercials --- the total opposite of my usual behavior.  Did not realize that I could watch most of them this morning on the computer!!!  It is inexplicable other than to say Seattle was simply overwhelming.  I kept thinking eventually Denver would make a stand.  Ah well --

We are having a strange mix of sleet, rain and snow this morning.  At this moment the heaviest snow is just a tiny bit north of us in Philadelphia.  The jury is out whether it will get south to us.

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 2/3/2014 10:08 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,088
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I finished Murder at Bent Elbow.  I did a good job on the Mystery Challenge.  I only had a couple of books for it and was forced to search out new to me authors and new to me situations.  At one time I was heavily into historical books of any kind, mystery, comedy, non-fiction.  So this was a change of pace for me.  Left me wanting more.

Now, I'm working on Sherlock Holmes vs Dracula book for the challenge.  Well, it's written by an award winning author, Loren Estleman. 

Down to only three books in progress.  Outlaw, Downfall and Dracula.

We must have gotten hit with a lot more snow Saturday than I realized.  The county snowplow did our street this morning.  They only come down side streets when the snow is more than six inches deep.  We have a snow plow service hired by the homeowners association that comes out for two or more so the street had been down.  But, the county has the BIG trucks and does a better job of it.

That nasty groundhog predicted six more weeks of winter and the prediction is for another storm Wednesday.  Did you know these winter storms have names like hurricanes?  The one on it's way is Nika!  crying

Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Date Posted: 2/4/2014 12:06 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
Posts: 39,335
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I am reading All Fudged Up (Candy-Coated, Bk 1) :: Nancy Coco. Nancy Coco also writes as Nancy Parra. I like this book but it has flaws, plot gets a little silly and MC is not all that well developed. There is room to grow in this series.

Alice

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 2/4/2014 3:16 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,088
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Alice, I just received that book today!  I'm always a day or two behind you.  cheeky

Date Posted: 2/4/2014 3:57 PM ET
Member Since: 3/31/2013
Posts: 639
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Read The Snowman by Jo Nesbo. It's #7 in the Harry Hole series, and I still haven't received #5 & #6, but I hate to hold up wish listed books too long. Harry was after a serial killer who targeted married women with children, and the killings began with the first snows of the season. There several twists before the real killer was unearthed and the reasons for his crimes revealed. The story was very good, but it was a long book at 500 pages, and seemed longer.

Now I'm reading Abuse of Process by Rankin Davis. It's another serial killer book, but this time focused on the trial. The setting is England, so it's solicitors and barristers, but the MC is a newspaper artist with an eidetic memory. He's sent to get a sketch of the defendant at a preliminary hearing. He's able to draw the entire courtroom, including lawyers, court staff and spectators, right down to the minute and second hands on the clock - except he's unable to draw the face of the killer. An interesting and unique premise for a legal thriller.

Date Posted: 2/4/2014 4:13 PM ET
Member Since: 7/29/2008
Posts: 1,520
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Read Missing Mabel/Nancy Mehl...a cute mystery set in Kansas.  Got a bit "preach-y" in parts, but not enough that I didn't enjoy the book.  Then, picked up one a friend passed on to me quite awhile ago, Ricochet/Sandra Brown.  Think I read something of hers years ago and didn't realize it was going to be a mystery (no dj).  Turned out to be entertaining!  A police procedural with the homicide detective having problems with his attraction to a possible murder subject!

It's cold and snowing today.  I started playing around on PBS and ended up ordering a bunch of books (including a couple from you, Geri!!).  Just what I needed...more books!!!!  Only supposed to be 4 above tomorrow with more snow.  Don't think the snow will amount to all that much, but is supposed to stay bitterly cold at least through the weekend.  Will stay inside and read!laugh
 

Date Posted: 2/5/2014 10:03 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 3,090
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Where is everyone this morning???  Some of us are iced or snowed in for sure.  Fortunately I still have power here in Delaware, but up the road a bit in Pennsylvania there are over 1/2 million folks without it.

I am reading two books just now:  "The Tale of Holly How" Susan Wittig Albert and "Her Royal Spyness" by the person who also writes an "herb" series and also one other series, maybe the Molly Murphy one.  Where or where has my little brain gone????  Okay, no "herb" series that is Wittig Albert.  It is Rhys Bowen and she does do Molly Murphy and Evan Evans.  Heaven help me with this time lag in my memory!!  Anyway both books are somewhat entertaining.  If you cannot tolerate talking animals you need to stay away from the Wittig Albert one.  Somehow in this setting with Beatrix Potter I do not find it objectionable.  The "Spyness" book is, of course, quite unbelievable with the main character supposedly a "minor" royal, but the time period and the London setting is enjoyable.  Hopefully will find a spot for them somewhere in one of the three Challenges for which I signed up.
 

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 2/5/2014 10:18 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,088
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I was trying to clean off som of my snow!  If I didn't know better I'd swear it was a mini blizzard.  Maybe everyone else looked out the window, turned over and went back to sleep.

I finished Sherlock vs Dracula.  Written in the style of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.  Sherlock encounters Dracula and is instrumental in driving him out of England.

I began Pretty Poison / Jiim and Joyce Lavene.  I picked it for the challenge because I like more than one of the Lavene's series but never tried this one.  MC owns a gardening shop.  She's the widow of a cop and finds a body in her locked shop.  The lead detective was her husbands partner but naturally there is some suspicion.  So far, not bad.  I might read more, I'll keep you posted.

Today I received Hostage / Robert Crais and Shoofly Pie / Tim Downs!  One from Becky and one from Mary.  New stuff to read!  Not cozies!!! 

Date Posted: 2/5/2014 11:55 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 3,090
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Geri --- That's it --- I can use either of the books I am reading for the category where you read a book from a second series by the same author.  I don't think I have filled that one yet.

"Shoo Fly Pie" is anything but cozy --- do not know if you read the books about the Body Farm in Tennessee, but this is of the same ilk --- bugs eating bodies, etc.

Date Posted: 2/5/2014 12:10 PM ET
Member Since: 9/30/2006
Posts: 6,857
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Well, I did it again - completely forgot we were into a new month and just happily kept writing in January.  Sheesh.  Thank you Geri for reminding me!  :)

I finished  "Devil's Food Cake" by Josi Kilpack.  The MC was driving me crazy.  The reasoning, or lack of thereof, for her to stick her nose in this particular murder investigation is ridiculous.  Then she pushed ahead and got herself in so much trouble I wasn't sure she'd ever get out of it. It was a slog through 2/3 of the book, then things picked up and was quite good, to the point that I picked up the next in the series "Key Lime Pie."

We are getting snowed on today, too.  6-12 expected.  DH had no school today.   

Becky, I agree with Geri & Marla - but I know how hard it is to let go of those things. 

I don't even want to talk about the Super Bowl.  It was awful.  First play - a two point safety for Seattle and they never looked back.  If you are a Seattle fan I'm sure you were thrilled with the game.  Us Denver fans, not so much.  But, for sure Seattle deserved to win.  Seemed like most of the Broncos still had their minds left in the bus.

Being a glutton for punishment, after you all were talking about No-Bake cookies, and the fact I have never been able to make them firm up (they are good if you eat them with a spoon, but ....) I decided to try again.  I found a different recipe than the one I had.  This one had milk in it and gave explicit instructions on how long they should boil.  It actually worked!!!  I have ,made the first batch of lovely, firmed up no-bakes in my life!!   They aren't staying around long either.   :)



Last Edited on: 2/5/14 12:13 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/5/2014 12:22 PM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2007
Posts: 3,090
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Oh Joy --- I am so happy about your cookies!!!!  A triumph in the kitchen.

The little red Mercedes was driven out of the driveway yesterday and I did not cry as it left.  Have been a bit teary a few times since then, but look at it as a sign of progress in this long trip of grief.

Glad you are now with us here in February --- I am curious, did you wonder why no one else was posting (hee hee)????  I have actually done the same thing.

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 2/5/2014 12:50 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,088
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We've all done that.  And sniffle, you didn't share your no-bake cookies with us!

One less thing to take care of Becky.  One step closer to Oklahoma!

It's still snowing, three planes got stuck in the snow at the big airport.  Even though it hasn't stopped snowing we had a snow plow go down our street.  So far no garbage cancellation so I guess the trucks are rolling.

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