Friday, December 21, 2012

73. Deep Down

A Jack Reacher short story. Reacher is called in to find a traitor who is selling secrets to the highest bidder. Problem is that all 4 suspects are women sitting in a hearing for a new assault rifle.
Good little story. Only 1.99 on my kindle :)

72. The Winter Letter

Lovers of Harry Potter will love this book! Enough said.

71. Saving Cee Cee Honeycutt

Loved this book!!!!!!!! Cee Cee is 12 years old when her crazy mother, I mean wearing prom dresses daily, massive make-up, crowns, and beauty pageant sashes, crazy mother walks in front of a bus and dies. Her absentee, traveling salesman father gives her to her great aunt in Georgia. The story gets happier from here on out. A great story of love in the South by wonderful southern ladies.

70. Ice Fire

Pretty good book about a federal judge who solves a 20 year old murder case involving a scientist's discovery of a new fuel source: methane gas trapped in ice under the ocean. Good characters.

69. Thunder and Rain

Loved this book about a former Texas Ranger.  A real "Jack Reacher" kind of guy. Worth reading!

68. Oath of Office

I give this book about a 6. It is about a town where bizarre things are happening. One doctor sets out to discover what is going on. He finds out that it is a farmer's genetically altered corn that is making people sick.
Blah, blah.

67. Live to Tell

This was a very intriguing and disturbing book. It deals with mental problems in children. True statement from the book. "Parents think that the worst thing that can happen to their child is cancer, wrong - it is a mental illness."
After reading this book, I agree.
This book has given me a very tender heart towards parents who have children with mental/emotional illnesses. This is a novel and murder mystery book following 3 women: a childhood survivor of her whole family being killed by her father, a detective working on solving two recent whole family murders, and a mom whose 8 year old son tries to kill her. Sounds like fun, doesn't it?? I liked it.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

66. Don't Know Jack

This is very interesting. This book is about Reacher, but is written by another author. This book takes place 15 years after the 1st Reacher book - The Killing Floor. And the characters (FBI) are looking for Reacher. It was cool to see the story from another angle. There are more in the series that I might read.
The only disappointing part is that they never actually find Reacher, just talk about  him.

65. Killing Floor

This is the 1st Jack Reacher book. I had never read it. And I must say this is THE most violent Reacher book I have ever read. There is the most awful torture scenes described that I have ever read. And for that reason, I would not be sad if I could erase reading this book.

And while we are discussing Reacher...Tom Cruise is NOT Reacher. Reacher is 6 ft. 5 inches with very big hands and shoulders. A Big guy!

I will still see the movie and I hope I am proven wrong.

64. Hunger Games

This is my 2nd time through the Hunger Games books. I still love them! She is a great storyteller. Katniss feels like a real person to me, much like Harry (Potter), Jane (Erye), & Anne (Shirley). All my friends!!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

63. Second Son

LOVED this short book (only $1.99 on my Kindle :)
It is a Jack Reacher book about when he was a teenager.
All Reacher fans must read!

62. Gone Girl

Okay...I am just going to tell you what I thought of this book, not what it about in case you want to read it.

First, I couldn't put it down. What is going to happen?? So many twists and turns!!!!!!!!
And then I got to the end and said "What???". 

Does that help you decide to read it or not? Sorry.

61. The Apothecary's Daughter


Harrison & Emily bought me a Kindle after I gave theirs a test run. I love it!!!!!!!!!

And I loved this book. I couldn't tell what was going to happen next or how it was going to end. It is set in old England, Jane Austen time, I think. And it about the world of the apothecary.

I highly recommend this book to every female reading this.

60. The Two Minute Rule

Another great book by Robert Crais. He develops such great characters. This is a crime solving book. The main character gets out of jail (10 years for bank robbery) and finds out his cop son was just killed along with 3 other cops. It is the story of him finding out what happened to his son.
Great story!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

59. Murder at Pemberly

As much as I love Pride and Prejudice...this book was a disappointment.

It follows the Darcy's after their marriage to the eve of their annual ball. That rascally Wickham is accused of murder.

There was no real angst, no in depth character development, and no great conversations between characters.
So I have to give this one a thumbs down, sorry.

58. Cutting for Stone

My good friend, Kay Pearn, lent me this book to read. I really enjoyed it. It is one of those that you can't wait to find out what happens in the end. It takes place mostly in Ethiopia where the Stone twins are born. Their mom is an Indian nun/nurse and their dad a brilliant British surgeon.
Needless to say their birth was unexpected! This book follows the twins throughout their lives. They both become doctors.

Never really understood what the title means.

Wonderful book. Great human story with a culturally different background of India and Africa.

57. The Story Girl

Just another great little book by L.M. Montgomery. (author of Anne of Green Gables)

56. Great American Short Stories

I started this book about a year ago and just now picked it back up to finish it. I love a really great short story. There are 30 stories in this collection and I thought about 1/2 of them were good. None of them stopped me in my tracks as awesome.
My all time favorite short story is called "The Lottery" by Shirley Jackson (it is not in this collection). I have often wondered if the Hunger Games were based off of this story. That should give you some idea as to what it is about.

I recommend this book if you want a taste of some classic short stories.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

55. The Christmas Note

Been my lucky month! I love this book also.

I would like to read her other books as well.

It is about neighbors Gretchen & Melissa. They are about the same age but completely different. Gretchen is married to a soldier and  has 2 kids. Melissa is 39 & single and is a really grumpy and prickly person.

This story takes many unexpected turns about friendship, family, and faith. I highly recommend!

54. The House of Silk

Great book also. This is a new Sherlock Holmes and Watson book sanctioned by the Conan Doyle foundation.

Enough said. If you love Holmes/Watson, you will love this book.

53. I've Got Your Number

Another great surprise! Loved this book!!

Summary from Amazon:

Poppy Wyatt has never felt luckier. She is about to marry her ideal man, Magnus Tavish, but in one afternoon her “happily ever after” begins to fall apart. Not only has she lost her engagement ring in a hotel fire drill but in the panic that follows, her phone is stolen. As she paces shakily around the lobby, she spots an abandoned phone in a trash can. Finders keepers! Now she can leave a number for the hotel to contact her when they find her ring. Perfect!

Well, perfect except that the phone’s owner, businessman Sam Roxton, doesn’t agree. He wants his phone back and doesn’t appreciate Poppy reading his messages and wading into his personal life.

What ensues is a hilarious and unpredictable turn of events as Poppy and Sam increasingly upend each other’s lives through emails and text messages. 

Highly recommend :)

52. Home Front

Great story!! So I won't tell you much. It is about a couple, Jolene & Michael. After 12 year of marriage and 2 kids, things are a little rocky. Growing apart a bit. Then Jolene gets deployed to Iraq. I was really surprised at how much I liked this book. Highly recommend.

51. The House at Riverton

Ever see the movie The Legend of the Falls with Brad Pitt?? You know the one where pretty much everyone dies and no one gets to be with the one they love. Drama and pain!

Well, that is the same with this book. If that is your thing, then read it. No one ends up happily married, lots of people die, the end.

50. The Keeper of Lost Causes

This book is pretty much about one of your worst nightmares come true.

Here we go...this takes place in Sweden (or somewhere Scandanavian). This police department starts a new detective department "Q". And it has one detective and one assistant. They are in charge of cold cases. They choose one about the disappearance of Morada (more aid ah) Lundgren. You really don't want to be Morada!

Summary: When Morada is 14 and her brother Oofa is 12, they and their parents are taking a leisurely drive one day. They end up getting into an accident and both of their parents die and Oofa ends up somewhat  brain damaged. The family in the other car is on their way to the hospital because the mom is in labor with twins. Well their car ends up in a tree and catches on fire. The dad dies, the 11 year old sister dies, the mom starts to give birth to the twins as the fire is beginning. Her leg is of course caught and she can't get out of the car, so she gives birth. One of the twins dies and the other is burned but lives. The mom lives too. The only other survivor the the 14 year old brother.

I am only just getting started!

15 years or so later...Morada is successful as a political aide and she cares for her brother Oofa. One day they decide to go on a trip. While on the ferry, Morada is kidnapped and Oofa wanders around for days until someone finds him and puts him in a "home".

Let the nightmare begin.

Morada wakes up in the dark and finds herself in a  room about 10 x 10. Roughly 3 days pass and then a voice comes over a speaker system telling her that 2 buckets will be passed in to  her twice a day. One will have food and the other should be used as her toilet. She asks why she is here and the voice says she has 30 minutes to think of why she has been taken. Well, she doesn't know of course. She guesses because of something in politics because she works on government. Wrong answer. The voice tells her that she has one year to think of the right answer................what??

So she lives in complete darkness for one year with the buckets coming and going. One year later the lights come on full blast. Same question and she still doesn't have an answer. So her punishment is that she has to live with the lights on 24/7 for the next year. Oh yeah, she is in some sort of hyperbolic  chamber and they are increasing her "atmosphere" by 2 times. So it is like she is diving under the ocean permanently.

Repeat on years 3 & 4 & 5 with each year the "atmosphere" increasing until it is 6 times normal.

Meanwhile the detectives in dept. Q. are working on finding out what happened to her. They end up finding her and saving her through a series of good detective work.

Who kidnapped her? The surviving family of the twins. The 14 year old son, the mom, and the burned twin. They blame her for the accident because they say she was goofing off with her brother Oofa and distracted her dad, who then caused the accident.

We get a happy ending but who would ever be normal after being kept for over 5 years in a small room, never taking a shower, never changing clothes, brushing her hair or teeth, being TOTALLY ALONE etc...........

Who thinks of these things??????

Friday, September 21, 2012

49. A Brain Wider than the Sky

A migraine diary. In honor/sympathy for my daughter, Megan.

This book is a personal story of a migraine sufferer and also a history of the migraine back to ancient days and the treatments used. He writes of how it comes on suddenly, how light is the "enemy", how any little noise makes your head feel like it is exploding, how badly you feel that your family doesn't get the best of you, just the leftover energy you have from fighting the pain. And how you feel like just an observer of the world, not a participant.

Truly heartbreaking! I have seen Megan suffer and I don't know how she does it. I have a little empathy after suffering with my frozen shoulder pain. But I really have no idea how she deals with the pain on a daily basis. Her own blog gives a peek at her life.

Family & friends- keep praying for complete and total healing for our dear, gentle, creative, strong and beautiful Megan! Amen!!

48. Eat that Frog

Okay this is my nerdy organizational side coming out.

Eat that Frog - 21 great ways to stop procrastinating and get more done in less time.

I heard about this book on a blog I read "Money Saving Mom".

It has been said for many years that if the first thing you do each  morning is to eat a live frog, you can go through the day with the satisfaction of knowing that that is probably the worst thing that is going to happen to you all day long.

Your frog is your biggest, most important task, the one you are most likely to procrastinate on if you don't do something about it now. It is usually unpleasant or time consuming or just really hard. And if you eat your frog first, the rest of the day is a piece of cake!! pun intended!

If you have two frogs to eat, eat the biggest and ugliest one first.

I really enjoyed this book and underlined a great deal of it. I highly recommend it. Ask me if you want to borrow it!

47. 77 Shadow Street

This book took me awhile to get into (all 556 pages of it)! It is kind of about a haunted house that gets transported in time every 38 years. It is now an upscale apartment building with several residents. So it takes a while to get everyone straight in your head. But basically when it gets transported only a few people live to tell about it.

There is a creepy malevolent force that is controlling everything. I couldn't figure out what it was until near the end. It turned out to be an A.I. (artificial intelligence) experiment gone horribly wrong. Don't they always?

Not my favorite, it took way too long to get to the meat of the story. But overall it was an interesting theory put into words.

46. Red Prophet

This is the 2nd book in the Alvin Maker books by Orson Scott Card. And as expected it was very good. I can't wait to finish the series.

To refresh your memory:
Come home to the magical America that might have been and marvel as the tale of Alvin Maker unfolds. The 7th son of a 7th son is a boy of mysterious powers, and ...

You get the picture. It is really good!!!

45. Knock Out

This is an FBI thriller book. I have read this author before and just remembered how much I like her characters: Dillon Savich and Lacey Sherlock a.k.a. as Savich and Sherlock. They are FBI partners and have been for years and apparently are now married with a 3 year old.

Anyway, this book has some magic in it! More like psychic magic. A weird cult is after 7 year old Autum and her mom. Come to find out Autumn's dad, who recently died, was a family member of the cult founders. And he ran away as soon as he was old enough and never looked back. Some of the family members have some psychic abilities, like being able to communicate to people long distance with just their minds, or being able to control people when they look directly in their eyes, etc.

So this is why they want the girl. They find out that she has some abilities at the funeral for her dad. So it is a great suspenseful chase book. I really liked it!

Friday, August 31, 2012

44. Danger in the Shadows

Well, I  read this book before a few years ago. But Mark and I were on a road trip and so we listened to it on CD. I love this author, Dee Henderson. She is a great Christian fiction writer. And this book is the beginning of the O'Malley series.

Anyway, this is definitely a "girl" book. I had to endure some rolled eyes and comments in the car from Mark when things got too mushy or romantic etc... But the story is really good. The main character & her twin sister were kidnapped as a children. Sadly, the twin died and the kidnapper keeps stalking the surviving girl for the next 25 years. There is a lot of good suspense. So I recommend it for girls only!

43. Seventh Son

Okay, first thanks to Kay Pearn for this recommendation!!

This is a new-to-me Orson Scott Card series. I didn't even know it existed. And like his "Ender" books, I really liked this one. So I will definitely read the series.

On the front cover..."Come fall in love with a magical America that might have been". I know I got my daughters attention with the word magical. ha ha! But I think Harrison will like this series too, as he is the one who got me reading the Ender books.

It takes place about the time of Ben Franklin and shows an alternative America. Although Ben Franklin and the other founding fathers still existed. The main character is Alvin, who is the 7th son of a 7th son. And this apparently gives you cool magical powers.

Can't wait to read the rest!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

42. Juliet

This was a fairly interesting book - a modern take on Romeo & Juliet. In fact it is about the descendants of the original Romeo & Juliet that Shakespeare based his play on. It takes place in Sienna, Italy. Lots of good mystery and intrigue as it goes from 1340 to present day and back again.

Monday, August 13, 2012

41. Friedman's Fables

Companion book to the required reading for staff. Easier to read than Failure of Nerve, but still not pleasurable reading in the least. No one reading my blog will ever read this book, so just ignore it! ha ha

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

40. Illusion

Well, this book was really different. I don't think I liked it.

I don't even know how to describe it.

synopsis --

Dane and Mandy, a popular magic act for forty years, are tragically separated by a car wreck that claims Mandy’s life—or so everyone thinks. Even as Dane mourns and tries to rebuild his life without her, Mandy, supposedly dead, awakes in the present as the nineteen-year-old she was in 1970. Distraught and disoriented in what to her is the future, she is confined to a mental ward until she discovers a magical ability to pass invisibly through time and space to escape. Alone in a strange world, she uses her mysterious powers to eke out a living, performing magic on the streets and in a quaint coffee shop.
Hoping to discover an exciting new talent, Dane ventures into the coffee shop and is transfixed by the magic he sees, illusions that even he, a seasoned professional, cannot explain. But more than anything, he is emotionally devastated by this teenager who has never met him, doesn’t know him, is certainly not in love with him, but is in every respect identical to the young beauty he first met and married some forty years earlier.
They begin a furtive relationship as mentor and protégée, but even as Dane tries to sort out who she really is and she tries to understand why she is drawn to him, they are watched by secretive interests who not only possess the answers to Mandy’s powers and misplacement in time but also the roguish ability to decide what will become of her.

39. XO

Loved it! Another Jeffrey Deaver book. I think I have read every book he has written. This is the latest Kathryn Dance book. I think Meg & Britt would like it. Good characters and not scary.

COUNTRY-POP INGÉNUE Kayleigh Towne’s career is just reaching new heights with her huge hit single “Your Shadow”—but increased fame is also bringing unwanted attention. An innocent exchange with one of her fans, signed with an “XO,” leads Kayleigh into the dangerous and terrifying realm of obsession.
Edwin Sharp thinks Kayleigh’s songs contain messages that speak directly to him. Despite her clear rejection and threats from lawyers and law enforcers, he remains convinced that “Your Shadow” was written just for him, and he announces he’s coming for Kayleigh. Then a potentially fatal accident occurs at the concert hall where Kayleigh is rehearsing for a triumphant hometown performance, and she is convinced that someone—maybe Edwin—was there watching her from the darkness.
True to his word, Edwin Sharp soon makes an ominous appearance in town, and California Bureau of Investigation Agent Kathryn Dance, a friend and fan of Kayleigh’s on vacation in Fresno to attend the show, intervenes on her behalf, drawing Sharp’s frightening attention to herself. That night a member of the road crew whom Kayleigh had once dated is murdered in an eerie echo of an image from her chart-topping song. As more deaths loom on the horizon, Kathryn Dance must use her considerable skills at investigation and body-language analysis to stop the stalker and save more innocent victims. But before long she learns that, like many celebrities, Kayleigh has more than one fan with a mission . . .
This nail-biting thriller from suspense master Jeffery Deaver speeds along over just three short days, filled with terrifying twists that will keep readers held in rapt suspense until the final shocking revelation.

38. A Thousand Acres


I kept reading thinking it has to get better, but no. And I got it because it was recommended on Barnes & Ugh.

A dysfunctional farm family struggles with farming. The father is mean. There are 3 grown & married daughters. The father decides to "retire" and give the farm to his girls. He then sits on his recliner and glares at them working all day.
The oldest daughter sleeps with a man she knew in high school who has come back home after dodging the draft in Canada for years.
Then the 2nd daughter falls in love with him, has an affair, meanwhile the oldest daughter finds out and begins to hate her sister.
Meanwhile the 2nd daughter's husband dies, leaving her with 2 teen daughters, but at least she has her new boyfriend. Oh and she has breast cancer.
The oldest daughter wanting to kill her sister, poisons some canned food (that she knows the daughters won't eat) and then just kind of waits to hear the news that her sister is dead.
Meanwhile, she then gets up one day, leaves her husband and belongings, drives to California and becomes a waitress.

Oh yeah, did I mention that the father sexually abused his daughters while they were growing up.
Then the 2nd sister dies (of breast cancer) and the oldest sister gets to raise them. But they are never really super close.

The 3rd sister (a lawyer) is much younger and ends up convincing her dad to sue his other daughters to get his farm back. But the father goes senile as the trial starts, so his older daughters can't confront him about his abuse.

Just a bucket of fun. Did I mention that I HATED this book.

37. The Innocent

Audio book - riveting, couldn't wait to get back in the car to find out what happens next...

Eight years ago, a man walked five-year-old Hannah out the front doors of her school and spirited her over the Mexican border, taking her into the world of a cult known as The Chosen. For eight years, followers of The Prophet have hidden the child, moving her from country to country, shielding the man who stole her. Now, those who’ve searched the longest know where to find her. They are childhood survivors of The Chosen, thirty-somethings born and raised inside the cult who’ve managed to make lives for themselves on the outside. They understand the mindset, the culture within that world, and turn to Vanessa Michael Munroe for help, knowing that the only possibility of stealing Hannah back and getting her safely out of Argentina is to trust someone who doesn’t trust them, and get Munroe on the inside.

36. Failure of Nerve

Required reading by Todd for all staff.

Need a dedicated college class to digest all of the information and deep thoughts. Like reading a textbook.

Good stuff I am sure, but slow, tough reading

32 - 35

The Bungalow - Good love story that will frustrate you girls. Takes place in the summer of 1942 as the war is starting. Engaged girl becomes a nurse and meets a soldier, falls in love, but goes home and marries her fiance', is widowed, grows old and reunites with soldier.

The Drop - Great new book with character LAPD detective Harry Bosch. Good tough cop who knows how to solve cold cases. Recommend any book with Bosch.

The Best of Me - Nicholas Sparks - what can I say, get ready to cry... Read it if you like his books.

Love in a Nutshell - Fun beach read - charming characters, just kind of fluffy.

28 - 31

A Dublin Student Doctor - Great heartwarming story about a 1930's Irish medical student. Megan & Britt might like.

The Underside of Joy - Good story, Good stepmother is raising kids when her husband dies suddenly and the ex-wife shows up at the funeral and wants the kids back. Happy Ending though a few tears along the way!

Three-Day Town - Okay mystery story - kind of bland.

Emory's Gift - Great story. Normally, I don't love books where animals play a major role, but this one is different. Won't spoil it but, Emory is a wild bear who might be someone else... Read it!!

27. The Last Thing I Remember

Loved it! And apparently there are 3 more in the series. I was just shopping at Ollies, they have a great cheap book selection, and picked it up.

Back cover:
Charlie West just woke up in someone else's nightmare. He's strapped to a chair. He's covered in blood and bruises. He hurts all over. And a strange voice outside outside the door just ordered his death.
The last thing he can remember, he was a normal high-school kid doing normal things...How long ago was that? Where is he now?...

Great thriller with a great story. I am going to buy the other 3 in the series from Alibris soon.

Harrison would like it!

26. Water for Elephants

Well, I wasn't interested in this book at first because I saw the movie trailer and didn't want to see it. Still haven't. Anyway, I went to visit my mom and finished my book and needed another so I got it at Target.
I didn't love it, but it was a compelling story and I had to find out what happened at the end. Just kind of a weird story.

25. Further Chronicles of Avonlea

Another great book of short stories by the author of Anne of Green Gables. If you love Anne, and you are in my family, then you own this book. Everyone else, I feel sorry that you don't love Anne!!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

24. The Sleeping Doll

This is the 2nd book by Deaver about Kathryn Dance. She is a "detective/cop" who has studied body language (kinesics) and uses it to interview suspects and can always tell if someone is lying. 
Love all Deaver books, and Kathryn is his female version of Lincoln Rhyme. Don't know who Lincoln Rhyme is??
Well,  you need to get reading! But not Megan or Brittany because Lincoln solves brutal murders. Okay, Jared might not want to read them either. But Harrison has read them I think!!