Wednesday, October 26, 2016

An Irish Country Love Story

By Patrick Taylor

Patrick Taylor is one of my favorite authors; I truly enjoy John Keating’s reading of his novels. This many faceted work contains many love stories: Young love of engaged Barry Laverty, Fingal’s partner; the love of an ailing pensioner for his old dog that becomes lost; the love of the community for their long time doctor and his threatened home and more.

If Patrick Taylor is new to you or one of your favorites, I’m certain you will enjoy reading or listening to his latest work An Irish Country Love Story.

~ Beckie

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

the life she wants

By Robyn Carr

I almost stopped reading this novel. The background of the story focuses on a Ponzi scheme which is something that is so objectionable to me that I soon had had enough. But I am such a fan of Robyn Carr I thought that I would persevere and read to the end and I’m glad I did.

Emma’s dream life is shattered by her husband’s many extremely bad choices. She is left with nothing and goes back to her home town to try to start living a “normal life”. One of her best friends welcomes her with open arms and a place to stay. Her other best friend, from whom she has been estranged for years does not. Life is very hard and but she is determined to be a survivor.

If you like a good story about powerful women that is thought-provoking with a good touch of humor, you will enjoy “the life she wants”.

~ Beckie

Great Reckoning

By Louis Penny

Great Reckoning is one of Penny's best. Armand Gamache has retired and moved to Three Pines with his wife following his near-death injuries. Gamache is offered the position of Commander of the Surete Academy. This position will allow him to finish rooting out corruption in the Surete at the entry level. Unfortunately, things are worse than he expected. Like many of her stories, there are multiple story lines that are woven together for a fascinating conclusion.

~ Rochelle

Monday, October 24, 2016

The Bicycle Spy

By Yona Zeldis McDonough
(Juvenile book)

Marcel loves to ride his bicycle and dreams of someday racing in the Tour de France. He is happy racing his friends or making bread deliveries for his parents’ bakery. His little town in France is feeling the effects of Germany’s occupation. For two years now, since 1940, the race has been cancelled. As Marcel makes his deliveries, he is often stopped by soldiers and questioned about where he is going and why. Then Marcel discovers that this war is much worse than he imagined. His friend’s entire family is in imminent danger as is his whole family. He can help by taking the most risky bicycle ride of his life. If this isn’t successful, life for these two families will change for the worse.

~ Dixie

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Indian Summer


Starring: Alan Arkin, Diane Lane and Bill Paxton. Eight friends reunite at their summer camp after 20 years. They might be 20 years older but they are still full of fun – practical jokes, races, kitchen raids and those romances that started 20 years ago just might start up again. This is a fun movie. Rated PG-13

~ Dixie

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Pushing Up Daisies

By: M.C. Beaton

Agatha Raisin is perpetually longing after a man and solving difficult mysteries. Pushing Up Daisies continues with this theme. When Lord Bellington wants to turn a community garden area into housing the gardeners are outraged. You may be able to guess what happens to Lord Bellington but the “who-done-it” is not revealed until the end of the story. There are multiple murders and an attempt that failed; Agatha and her crew find out the perpetrator(s) before the police. M.C. Beaton always gives the reader a great story with plenty of twists and turns, I hope you enjoy Pushing Up Daisies as much as I have.

~Beckie H.

Otherworld Series 11,12 ,13

Waking the Witch (Otherworld #11)
by Kelley Armstrong
At twenty-one, Savannah Levine-orphaned daughter of a notorious dark witch and an equally notorious cutthroat sorcerer-considers herself a full-fledged member of the otherworld. The once rebellious teen has grown into a six-foot-tall, motorcycle-riding jaw-dropper, with an impressive knowledge of and ability to perform spells. The only problem is, she's having a hard time convincing her adoptive parents, Paige and Lucas, to take her seriously as an adult.
Suddenly, Savannah gets the chance she's been waiting for: Recruited by another supernatural detective, she travels to Columbus, Washington, a small, dying town. Two troubled young women have been found in an abandoned warehouse, murdered. Now a third woman's dead, and on closer inspection small details point to darker forces at play. Savannah feels certain she can handle the case, but with signs of supernatural activity appearing at every turn, things quickly become more serious- and far more dangerous-than she realizes.

Spell Bound (Otherworld #12)
by Kelley Armstrong
Savannah Levine is all grown up. As a witch endowed with an array of spells, she is also a force to be reckoned with. As a paranormal investigator she is finally coming into her own. But her last case tore a family apart, and Savannah swore she'd give up her powers to fix the mess she helped create. Someone--or something--must have been listening. Powerless and on the run from witch-hunting assassins, Savannah stumbles upon a gathering storm that threatens the very existence of the Otherworld.

Thirteen (Otherworld #13)
by Kelley Armstrong
War is coming to the Otherworld. A sinister cult known as The Supernatural Liberation Movement is hell-bent on exposing the truth about supernaturals to the rest of the world. Their violent, ruthless plan has put everyone at risk: from werewolves to vampires, from witches to half-demons. On the eve of battle, all the major players must come together in a last, desperate fight for survival - Elena and Clay; Adam and Savannah; Paige and Lucas; Jeremy and Jaime; Hope and Karl, Eve and more...They are fighting for lives.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

At the Edge of the Orchard

By Tracy Chevalier
Audiobook format

The narration of the first section of this novel is split between James and Sadie Goodenough, the parents of a very dysfunctional family. They tell of their struggle to survive after being forced to leave their Connecticut home in 1829. They get stuck in the mud of the Black Swamp (north-west Ohio), a place Native Americans would not live, and decide that this free land will be their home. The next section takes an unexpected turn, a series of letters from one of the children who has left home at age nine.

I don’t like to give away too much of the plot when blogging a book so I am going to conclude by saying that if you enjoy historical fiction you will truly enjoy At the Edge of the Orchard by Tracy Chevalier. To quote Geraldine Brooks: “Chevalier is a master at foregrounding the small, dramatic stories of the overlooked people from the past.”
~ Beckie

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The Crooked House

By Christobel Kent
ebook format available through Overdrive

Did you enjoy The Girl On The Train? Also set in modern-day U.K., The Crooked House is a psychological thriller that begins with fourteen-year-old Esme Grace hearing shotgun blasts targeting her family from her upstairs bedroom.

Flash forward thirteen years as Esme, now "Alison" from London, has returned to her childhood town with her boyfriend Paul for a wedding. The unsolved murders still haunt the town as Alison begins to uncover the secrets of her past.

~ Paula

To See You Again: A True Story of Love in a Time of War

By Betty Schimmel

As children in 1939, Betty and Richie met in Budapest. As teenagers, they fell in love during WWII. Their love was so strong they believed it could survive even a world war and the terror of Hitler. When the two are separated by the Nazis, Betty vows she will find Richie someday. Betty and her family endure a forced march, life in a concentration camp, deplorable conditions and finally liberation. (In my opinion, it is doubtful that anyone in her family would have survived without the strength and determination of her mother.) After the Liberation, Betty finds Richie’s name on a list as dead but cannot accept it. She feels pressured into a marriage to an Auschwitz survivor, but she never forgets her love for Richie. In fact, before she marries she tells her husband to be that she cannot fully return his love and asks for release from the marriage if she ever finds Richie. He agrees. They marry and have three children together. Then in 1975, Betty and her daughter travel to Budapest and miraculously she recognizes her first love.

~ Dixie

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Rare Objects

By Kathleen Tessaro

Maeve Fanning is a twenty some-thing first generation Irish immigrant living in Boston during the Great Depression. Raised by her single mother, she is capable, clever and headstrong. She finds herself in a downward spiral after moving to New York City, hits rock bottom and decides to move back home to start over. In her attempt to better herself, she lands a job at an antiques shop catering to the city’s wealthiest and most peculiar collectors. Consequently she gets caught up in the opulent lifestyle of the rich but is unable to find happiness there. Eventually she does seem to find contentment.

This book is beautifully written and full of historical detail. I hope you enjoy Rare Objects as much as I did.

~ Beckie H.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Brain on Fire – My Month of Madness

By Susannah Cahalan

Very Scary! Brain on Fire is the true story of Susannah Cahalan who, at 24 years old, began showing signs of obsessive behavior which turns into insomnia, hand numbness, tingling, inability to cope with her job, paranoia and seizures. All the tests done by her doctors came back normal as her symptoms got worse and worse. Her parents and new boyfriend, refuse to believe she is psychotic. Finally, they call in “the doctor to go to when nothing makes sense.” He and another doctor make a diagnosis and the treatment begins. It is a long road to recovery. Although Cahalan has severe memory loss of what happened to her, as a reporter, she pieces together the story and writes this book. My blog can’t do this book justice. A must read!

~ Dixie

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

A Million Years in a Day

A curious history of everyday life from the stone age to the phone age

by Greg Jenner

Ever wonder how the toothbrush came about, or how about toilet paper and toilets? Jenner describes the evolution of everyday items and habits. Items we use or consume without giving thought to how they came to be. Humorous and enlightening.



by Danielle Steel

As Tallie is in the midst of directing the most ambitious film she has yet undertaken, small disturbances begin to ripple through her well-ordered world. An outside audit reveals troubling discrepancies in the financial records maintained by Victor Carson, Tallie's longtime, trusted accountant. Mysterious receipts hint at activities of which she has no knowledge. Soon it becomes clear that someone close to Tallie has been steadily funneling away enormous amounts of her money. In the wake of an escalating series of shattering revelations, Tallie will find herself playing the most dangerous game of all--to trap a predator stalking her in plain sight.


Monday, August 22, 2016

The Complete Persepolis

by Marjane Satrapi

Persepolis is the story of Satrapi's unforgettable childhood and coming of age within a large and loving family in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution; of the contradictions between private life and public life in a country plagued by political upheaval; of her high school years in Vienna facing the trials of adolescence far from her family; of her homecoming--both sweet and terrible; and, finally, of her self-imposed exile from her beloved homeland.