LadyoftheLodge in 2018

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LadyoftheLodge in 2018

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Apr. 28, 2018, 5:04pm

I am not sure why I never knew about this group! But now I am here, although quite a late starter. I read 29 books so far this year, but not sure I want to take the time to list them now. Maybe. But I am glad to be a part of this group, and enjoyed reading the threads so far.

Apr. 28, 2018, 7:08pm

Just start where you are. I look forward to following your reading here.

Apr. 29, 2018, 7:42am

Welcome. Of course, we'd looovvve to see your list when you have the time (and it could be just that—a list), but otherwise, as Kay says, just start where you are.

Bearbeitet: Apr. 29, 2018, 4:54pm

April List:

All-Butter ShortDead by H.Y. Hanna (The pre-quel to the series, sets up the scene and background for her later novels in the series. Fast and fun read, no brain work required.) 4 stars

The Nine Tailors by Dorothy Sayers (Good old Peter Wimsey! But the information on the change-ringing was baffling albeit interesting.) 4 stars

The Butter Did It by Phyllis Richman (This was on my shelf for a long time. I like novels about restaurants and cooking, and I figured out the mystery half way through the book.) 3 stars

Chronicles of Fairacre by Miss Read (Another of my "comfort" and "go to" authors. I have been a Miss Read fan for 30 years and read all the books more than once. I love the quirky characters and portraits of life in a small English village. Being a retired teacher, I like teacher books too.) 5 stars

Storm in the Village by Miss Read (ditto above) 5 stars

My Lucky Penny (Christmas in the City Book 3) by Jill Barnett (I like the basic premise, but why ruin a perfectly good Christmas story with an unnecessary sex scene? Many typos, needed a good editor. Bah humbug!) 3 stars

The Blue Bistro: A Novel by Elin Hilderbrand (This was my first read from this author. The portrait of life as part of a restaurant staff was very enjoyable. I think the author did her homework, and her end notes helped. However, the ending was a totally bust. I kept wanting to rewrite the ending. It was that depressing. Some of the characters were totally unlikeable, and the drinking and drug use were sad.) 2 stars

Tea Rose (Tea Room Mysteries) by Erin Keeley Marshall (Another very nice book, no sex, drugs, violence, curse words. This is part of a series, and the books all fit the same format and feature the same characters. The author introduced way too many characters at once, and many were not necessary to the story and never appeared again. I had a hard time following the ins and outs of the plot, although all was wrapped up in the end, and had an interesting and believable premise.) 3 and a half stars

Quilt Trip: A Southern Quilting Mystery by Elizabeth Craig (Boring plot, dragged out way too long, and some silly characters. This series was recommended by a friend who quilts, and we exchanged reading lists to get some new reading ideas. I probably will not pursue this series any further, but it fit the "Q" for AlphaKit Category Challenge.) 3 stars

Bearbeitet: Mai 9, 2018, 2:00pm

March List:

Murder She Wrote: On Thin Ice by Donald Bain (Read this one for 2018 Category Challenge, not a great story, rather predictable but still ok. Fits the format of other books in the series, most of which I have read.) 3 stars

Eyewitness Travel Guides: Ireland by DK Publishing (Yeah, guess where I was?) 5 stars

The Hawaiian Quilt by Wanda E. Brunstetter (Author did a good job with describing the places in Hawaii, since I was there and could vouch for her. Interesting take on those raised Amish who decide to leave the Amish community.) 4 and a half stars

The Jewels of Paradise by Donna Leon (Not my fave. I thought this would be one of the Inspector Brunetti novels, but it was not. Did not live up to my expectations.) 3 stars

April's Hope (Home to Heather Creek) by Robert Elmer (I have read others in this series, and this one stuck to the format of the others. No violence, no sex, no profanity, but a good story and fast read. Sort of like Bobbsey Twins for adults. The characters are not without their problems, just like real life.) 4 stars

Sisters Like Us by Susan Mallery (My first read by this author, it was a fun beach book, and I liked the characters. This presented a character study of two sisters who were unlike each other, and their mom. Also additional boyfriends, husbands, kids, and friends to round out the story.) 4 and a half stars

Bearbeitet: Mai 3, 2018, 9:19pm

February List:

84, Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff (One of my faves, read it many times. Sort of a "comfort book" or "go to book".) 5 stars

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day (Persephone Classics) by Winifred Watson (On my "to read" book for years! Loved the narration on CD.) 5 stars

Jeeves and the Wedding Bells by Sebastian Faulks (Truly does homage to Wodehouse, very much in his style and very funny--but no cow creamer in this one, for those of you who are Wodehouse fans.) 5 stars

Nicholas by Rene Goscinny (translation from the French by Anthea Bell) (silly book, but my middle school students would have loved it) 3 stars

The PMS Murder by Laura Levine (Totally fluffy and silly beach read that reads more like a comedy TV show script; makes sense, if you read the author's bio) 3 stars

Not as much reading as usual during February and March as I was traveling in Hawaii and then Ireland for St. Patrick's Day! But I did leave the PMS Murders book in the "Little Free Library" box on Waikiki Beach!

Bearbeitet: Mai 3, 2018, 9:20pm

January List:

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost (beautifully illustrated edition!) 5 stars

The Maid's Secret (Penny Green Series) by Emily Organ (Interesting mystery, new author for me, will read more in the series.) 4 stars

Jesus of Nazareth: The Infancy Narratives by Pope Benedict XVI (I finally finished it, after trying to do so every Christmas season for the past few years. Very scholarly, certainly not my area of expertise.) 4 stars

Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf (Finally got around to reading this classic. Still some parts were difficult to understand, but worth the read. I was glad to finish it though.) 3 stars

Crazy Like a Fox (Sister Jane) by Rita Mae Brown (First one I read in this series, for Early Reviewers. I knew nothing about fox hunting, so this one increased my knowledge base. Loved it, immediately downloaded several earlier ones in the series.) 4 and a half stars

Another One Bites the Crust by H. Y. Hanna (Fun read about an English tea room. So of course, I had to follow the rabbit trail and download several more in the series.) 4 stars

Quartet in Autumn by Barbara Pym (This was a re-read for me. I always enjoy Pym.) 4 stars

Phoebe's Light by Suzanne Woods Fisher (Early Reviewers--Not one of my faves, a very annoying heroine.) 2 stars

Apr. 30, 2018, 10:39am

One more, from Early Reviewers
The Theory of Happily Ever After by Kristin Billerbeck (I was turned off by the whiney nature of the main character right from the get go. Add to this the snarky remarks about "single seniors" and that put me off from the rest of the book. It read like a script for a TV comedy show that dishes on lots of topics. Not wishing to be further annoyed, I stopped reading the book.) 2 stars

Apr. 30, 2018, 5:03pm

Well, judging by your lists thus far, we haven't much reading in common: I've read Frost (of course, I live in New Hampshire!), Woolf and at least one Sebastian Faulks. Still, that is quite a lively list! Thanks for posting it.

Bearbeitet: Apr. 30, 2018, 10:08pm

I really must get to Miss Pettigrew. It’s been on my wishlist for quite a while. Jeeves and the Wedding Bells sounds like fun. I love Wodehouse, so it seems like it might be a good fit.

Edited to add- have you ever read Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks? I loved that one. Not a comedy though.

Mai 1, 2018, 2:53am

Welcome! Great list of books this year so far. Look forward to following your reading as the year progresses.

Mai 2, 2018, 4:56pm

Nope, the Jeeves book was the first one I read by Faulks. I will check it out.

Bearbeitet: Mai 3, 2018, 9:15pm

First of the May reading selections

Murder on the Lusitania by Connrad Allen
I had this book on my shelf for years, but just picked it up on a whim. This is the first in a series, so of course I had to "sleuth" out the others (pun intended). I read this book for the MysteryCAT challenge for May.

This mystery is written in the classic style of Agatha Christie mysteries and others like her, the "Golden Age" of mystery novels. The characters are interesting and portrayed well. Being a fan of cruises myself, the setting of a fancy ocean liner piqued my interest immediately. The sleuth Dillman is a Pinkerton man, who has been hired to serve as a private detective on the ship. A murder and numerous thefts occur. Red herrings abound, although I was able to guess the perp half way through the book. The details were intriguing and added to the interest of the plot which kept me engaged throughout the story. A dash of romance added some interest as well. 5 stars

Mai 5, 2018, 5:31pm

>13 LadyoftheLodge: You have piqued my interest with Murder on the Lusitania. I’ll have to keep an eye out for it.

Mai 9, 2018, 1:59pm

Just finished The 3,000 Mile Garden by Leslie Land and Roger Phillips. This book served as the basis for a TV series, which I did not watch. It is comprised of a series of letters from 1989-1994, between a gardener in Maine and a fellow gardener in London, England. Each of them describes the plants they are growing in their respective gardens during different seasons of the year, sometimes including lists of the plants with genus and species names. The book also features some colorful photo plates of plants from their gardens.

In addition, the letters sometimes include humorous personal anecdotes, sketches, and recipes. I found the book to be interesting but I got bogged down in a few places, set the book aside, and came back to it later. I also did not have a good handle on the plant species, so a plant field guide would be a good reference to have on hand if a person wanted to see pictures of the plants.

This book reminded me a lot of 84, Charing Cross Road. However, this one just sort of ended without any epilogue or explanation, so I wondered what happened to end the correspondence. I read this book for the May RandomCAT Category Challenge. 3 and a half stars

Bearbeitet: Mai 13, 2018, 9:42pm

I finished How Reading Changed My Life by Anna Quindlen. This was a short read (70 pages) of essays, followed by 12 pages of book lists. (Some of the booklists seem to be a bit dated though.) The author describes her journey through reading, from childhood to adulthood. I found a lot of her descriptions of childhood to be quite like my own. "Yes, yes!" I wanted to shout. I will include this one on my June AlphaKit for the Category Challenge. 4 and a half stars

Bearbeitet: Mai 14, 2018, 8:04pm

Another finish! Read It and Eat by Sarah Gardner. I whipped through this one in a couple of sittings. If you are seeking suggestions for your reading group (or yourself), this book is divided into monthly suggestions plus appropriate recipes that go with the books. There are bonus sections in the back, in case your group does not like the suggestions for a particular month. Even though I am not in a book group right now, this one gave me some good suggestions and added to my TBR pile (akk!!) Each month's suggestions include book summaries and discussion questions. The titles are also indexed in the back, as are the recipes, making it easy to find specific items. I usually hand off my books to other readers once I finish, but this one is going back to my shelf as a "keeper". 4 and a half stars, just because I probably would not make some of the recipes as they are too time consuming or have too many ingredients, but the adult beverage recipes were great!

This has been on my shelf for a few years. I read it for the June AlphaKit in the 2018 Category Challenge. (Yeah, I like to read ahead! May has been a productive reading month so far!)

Mai 15, 2018, 3:43pm

Bad Guys and Gals of the Wild West is really a nonfiction book for kids. The title tells you what it is about! It has been awhile since I read a kids book, so this was fun. I find that kids books are often informative and easy to read, in a rather straight forward manner. I read this one for the Category Challenge MysteryCAT for June 2018. 4 and a half stars, loved the photos and documents related to the "bad guys and gals." The book also posed some ethical dilemma questions about what makes a person bad, or why good people turn to crime.

Mai 20, 2018, 3:12pm

Victoria by Daisy Goodwin was one of those that I could not put down. I read it when I was brushing my teeth, cooking, exercising, and so on, so finished it quickly. This is the novelized version of the early reign of Queen Victoria, her obsession with Lord Melbourne (Prime Minister), and engagement to Albert. I just wanted the book to go on, but I guess I will need to find another book about her to finish the story. I probably have one on my shelf. I read this book for the ColourCAT June Category Challenge (purple for royalty). 4 and a half stars.

Bearbeitet: Mai 20, 2018, 7:35pm

Rancher Ferrets on the Range by Richard Bach. Quick read, with a good philosophical viewpoint. I thought the dancing sheep were a little quirky, but I liked the book overall. This was not one of my faves in the Ferret Chronicles, but still a fun read. I cannot help thinking that the Ferret stories are much better as audio books than on the printed page. I have a hard time with the partial sentences and lack of words like, "the, and, a, an" but that must be the editor/teacher gene coming out. I read this for the RandomCAT June Category Challenge. 4 stars

Mai 20, 2018, 9:19pm

>19 LadyoftheLodge: Did you see the PBS series Victoria? If you liked the novel, you would probably like the two seasons that have aired.

Mai 21, 2018, 3:55pm

>21 NanaCC: I did not see the series, but have heard about it.

Mai 21, 2018, 3:57pm

Don't Cry for Me, Hot Pastrami is part of a mystery series about a Jewish widow, whose husband was a rabbi. Ruby continues to be involved with many exploits at Temple Rita. This one was set on a cruise ship, and the cruise proved to be a disaster in many ways. As mysteries go, it was just okay. I read about half of it, and then felt things bogging down and taking too long to develop. I skipped to the end to find out the finish. 3.5 stars

Bearbeitet: Mai 21, 2018, 8:24pm

Ben and Me by Robert Lawson is a book told by Amos, a mouse who "adopts" Ben Franklin. I like the "voice" of this book, which is that of Amos. The humorous, cartoon-like drawings add to the flavor of the book. I first read this book in 4th grade, but I enjoyed it more as an adult. I "got" more of the jokes. I read this book for RandomCAT June selection, requiring an unusual narrator, not human. 5 stars

Mai 27, 2018, 3:37pm

Scornful Scones (Cozy Corgi Mysteries) by Mildred Abbott. Since I love book stores, this story set in a bookstore with a bakery above was the ticket. I usually guess the perp by the middle of the book, but this one surprised me.

This book is part of a series, and I had not read the others yet. I loved the characters and setting, but I wish the author took a little time at the start of the book to fill in the blanks about events and characters in the previous books. I was scratching my head and saying, "Huh?" a couple of times during this book. However, I plan to read the rest in the series.

I also was bugged by the use of incomplete sentences, although that seems to be a common occurrence in stories and journalism today. Guess that's the style. :D I also wanted to edit the word usage in some places. This is of course the Grammar Policegirl manifesting herself. 4 stars

Bearbeitet: Mai 28, 2018, 3:44pm

Another One Bites the Crust by Ellie Alexander. I have read most of the others in this series, and I really like the characters, the setting in an Oregon town that hosts a Shakespeare festival, and lots of theater. I thought this one was the weakest so far. The plot and murder motive just didn't hang together. I did like the teaser ending that leads into the next book though. I will read the next book and I hope it is better. Maybe the ghost writers were in charge of this one??

There were also quite a few typos and word usage errors that needed to be cleaned up. ". . .my breath was coming in pants." Really??? Grammar Policegirl at work here again! Those nuns in elementary school really drilled that grammar into us kids!

I don't know why the authors of stories with culinary settings seem to feel compelled to narrate pages of culinary instructions when the recipes are at the end of the book. I decided to just skip over them this time.
3.5 stars

Mai 27, 2018, 9:44pm

>25 LadyoftheLodge: Your comment about feeling confused by lack of info from previous books is what convinced me long ago that I needed to read series books in order. I am always frustrated if I can’t find ‘the next’ book in a series.

Mai 28, 2018, 3:50pm

Traitorous Toys by Mildred Abbott.
This is another of the Cozy Corgi mysteries, and I liked it better than Book Five, which is the first one I read in the series. I thought this one had fewer grammar and word usage mistakes, and fewer of those goofy incomplete sentences. The plot hung together pretty well too.

This series is set in a small town in the mountains, and the narrator (Winifred or "Fred") is the owner of the Cozy Corgi bookstore. I love her dog Watson, although I have never owned a corgi. He is loaded with personality. I also really love her quirky family, including Barry, her aging hippie stepdad.

I am making good progress with the series and decided to go back to the beginning of the series and start there. These books are worth the whopping 99 cents I paid for each one on Amazon. They are quick reads and not always predictable. Bookstores, bakery, dogs, and family all add to the enjoyment of the story.
4.5 stars

Mai 28, 2018, 3:51pm

>27 NanaCC: I try to do that too, but sometimes I am swayed by the plot, and select the ones that seem most interesting to read first.

Mai 30, 2018, 2:31pm

Just finished Bickering Birds by Mildred Abbott. This is another of the Cozy Corgi mysteries. I guess I am hooked on this series! Like I said, bookshop, coffee, bakery, dog, small town. . .yessss! Once again, I did not guess the perp, although I did think it was more than one person and that was correct. In this novel, the sleuths become involved with a bird protection group, and one member of the group is murdered during a late night group hike in a snowy forest (very atmospheric!)

The writing style for this one was not as annoying as a later book in the series; I have been reading them out of order. Did the author hire ghost writers later on, or just get lazy??

I liked the ending though, quite a bit of a twist. 4.5 stars

Jun. 2, 2018, 5:40pm

I just finished The Daughter of Time by Josephine Tey. This was a tough read for me, and I ended up skipping and skimming after getting through about 50% of the book. I guess my knowledge of the history of English monarchs is sorely lacking, resulting in confusion throughout. I knew about the "Princes in the Tower" and I understood the premise of the book, in which Inspector Grant attempts to use police methods to solve this historical cold case. This was disappointing, since for years I had heard about how this book was such an interesting read and a classic mystery novel. 3 stars

Bearbeitet: Jun. 4, 2018, 4:49pm

Another finish! Death of a Gentle Lady by M.C. Beaton.
I forgot how much I liked the Hamish Macbeth novels and now there are 33 in the series! Yikes! I only read a dozen of them! Now I will need to play catch-up. I have a few on my Kindle too. 5 stars for the bumbling Scottish policeman. I read this for 2018 ROOTS group, and also for MysteryCAT July--Police Procedurals

Jun. 10, 2018, 4:23pm

Cruel Candy by Mildred Abbott
Another one of the Cozy Corgi bookshop mysteries. This one seemed to be written in a better manner, than the later ones I read, meaning fewer short and incomplete sentences, and fewer word usage errors. This one really hung together, and I got to meet all the characters I would have met if I read the series in order. I did guess the perp pretty quickly, but not the motive. Love the doggie! Now I have one more to read in the series. 5 stars for this one

Jun. 12, 2018, 6:16pm

The Teashop Girls is really a book for young girls, probably middle school. The main character helps her grandmother find ways to save the Steeping Leaf teashop from extinction. Along the way, she deals with her crush on a jerk of a boy, and changes occurring with her best friends. I love her grandma! I read this book for ColourCAT Challenge Pink, since it has a pink and green cover. 5 stars

Jun. 14, 2018, 3:02pm

Just finished an Early Reviewer book, Christmas by the Sea by Melody Carlson. Wendy and her teen son Jackson travel from Ohio to Maine, in order to spend Thanksgiving at the family cottage that Wendy inherited. She secretly plans to fix it up and sell it, in order to boost her flagging finances. She has encountered financial difficulties since becoming widowed. However, her son has other plans in mind! The story is wrapped up neatly and somewhat predictably at the end, but contained some humorous scenes of Wendy trying to buy materials to fix up her cottage.

This was more like a novella and could be easily read in an afternoon or evening by an avid reader. I have read other Christmas stories by this author and enjoyed them all. The Christian aspect is downplayed and never preachy. It was fun to read a Christmas story in June! 4.5 stars

Jun. 23, 2018, 2:30pm

The Man Who Couldn't Miss was an Early Reviewer book. I don't plan to read anything else by this author. I did not care for the profanity and sexual innuendoes, even if they were designed to carry forward a sense of who the characters were. 2 stars

Jun. 24, 2018, 12:57pm

Just finished The Provincial Lady in Wartime by E. M. Delafield. I read this for the RandomCAT challenge for July. This is another in the Provincial Lady series, written in diary format. The lady involves herself in finding a way to serve her country, which is on the brink of World War II. Lots of the usual tongue in cheek humor found in the other books in this series. 4 stars

Jun. 27, 2018, 10:51am

I am reading Savage Sourdough, one of the Corgi mysteries. I needed something fun and easy for travel, since I am a nervous flier. I should have read these books in order, but oh well! The remaining one I have to read in the series is the most recent, so at least that one will be in the correct order!

Jul. 1, 2018, 2:18am

Finished Savage Sourdough which is another in the Cozy Corgi mysteries. This got me through the flight to Fairbanks, Alaska, and I also started the last one in this series, Chaotic Corgis. Savage Sourdough has a twist at the end, which I did not see coming along, so that made it interesting. 4 stars

Jul. 10, 2018, 5:58pm

Just back from Alaska, which gave me little time to read. I am still on Chaotic Corgis.

Jul. 10, 2018, 6:08pm

I hope your trip to Alaska was wonderful.

Jul. 10, 2018, 7:30pm

>41 RidgewayGirl: It was wonderful! We had a few days in Denali and went on a train ride, wilderness bus tour (basically a school bus) but did not get to see the mountain itself, as it was shrouded in clouds as usual. The steamboat ride was also a joy, as we got off the boat and saw a recreated native village, and watched sled dogs being trained. One of the coolest things we did for the cruise ship part was visiting a salmon hatchery. Those fish are huge!! Thanks for asking.

Jul. 14, 2018, 3:57pm

Just finished The Hundred Gifts by Jennifer Scott. This is sort of a chick lit kind of book about women and friendship, but also a lot more. Themes include marriage and family, loneliness, midlife crisis, life falling apart at the seams, cooking, hobbies, finding oneself. Sure would like a sequel! 4.5 stars

Jul. 15, 2018, 8:20pm

Out to Pasture but not over the hill by Effie Wilder presents a look at life in a retirement community--humorous but also poignant, not in any way demeaning to the senior citizens. When I opened the back cover of the book, I found a copy of Guideposts which contained a story about the author. I must have placed it there when I bought the book. This was a short novel and an easy read, so I will need to go on now to read the other three in the series. The author was 88 years young when the book was published, and the fourth one in the series seems to have been published in 1999. I am sure the author must have gone on to her reward by now. If you read this book, be prepared to find some politically incorrect comments, but that does not detract from the book. Rather, it is indicative of the time period in which the author lived and the viewpoint of her writing. 4.5 stars

Jul. 22, 2018, 4:33pm

A Crossworder's Holiday was a book of short stories set at Christmas time, featuring a husband and wife sleuth/crossword creator team. It was frustrating to read because to solve the crimes, one had to complete a crossword puzzle and find the answers to the mystery. Since this was a used book, someone else had partially finished the puzzles in the book, so I had to tediously search among them to find the solutions to the mysteries. This added a complication I did not need whilst traveling. 4 stars

Jul. 22, 2018, 4:35pm

Death of a Greedy Woman by M.C. Beaton featured one of my fave detectives, Hamish Macbeth. I love the Scotland setting and the characters that show up in all the books of the series. This one was previously published as Death of a Glutton. I enjoyed reading this easy and fun read on the plane coming back from a short trip. Good poolside reading too! 5 stars

Jul. 25, 2018, 4:33pm

Chaotic Corgis (a Cozy Corgi Mystery) by Mildred Abbott is number six in the series. I have read them all, but not in order, which would help to keep things and people and events straight. This one had an interesting twist with one person dead and one injured, but they turn out to be unrelated events. Plenty of threads were included to lead to more books in the series. 4.5 stars

Jul. 26, 2018, 9:45pm

Over What Hill? by Effie Leland Wilder is the second in the series that began with Out to Pasture. The books are written in diary form, and tell about the daily interactions and humorous yet poignant happenings at a retirement home in the South. 4.5 stars

Jul. 31, 2018, 7:50pm

The Traveler's Tricks, American Girl Mysteries is a children's book, fast read, set during the War of 1812. The storyline features stagecoach passengers, several of whom harbor secrets of their own. One of them is a thief! 4.5 stars

Aug. 1, 2018, 7:35pm

First August finish! A Dinner to Die For is one of the Cherringham mystery series. This one was the first I read, but not the first in the series, which actually starts with some short stories. The mystery features Sarah, an IT specialist, and her sidekick who is a retired police officer from New York. It is set in a small village in England, and deals with two rival restaurant owners. I guessed the perp part way through the book, but it was still a fun read with a satisfying ending. 4.5 stars

Aug. 3, 2018, 10:03pm

Just finished Silent in the Sanctuary for ColourCAT August. Tickers updated. This is the second in a series about Lady Julia and her smouldering sidekick Brisbane, as they attempt to unravel another mystery. I read several of the others in the series, and now am going back to the beginning. This one took place at Yuletide in the family home (a decaying abbey), with several mysteries and a murder to solve. 5 stars

Aug. 6, 2018, 5:59pm

Number 3 for August: Older But Wilder which is number three in the series Notes from the Pasture, about senior citizens at a retirement community. This one was not as funny as the first two, and some of it read like a series of jokes. The author stated that the book was compiled from notes and vignettes sent to her by readers of her first two books, as well as her own experiences. I thought it ended rather abruptly. Two more in the series to go! 4.5 stars

Aug. 8, 2018, 3:35pm

Number 4 for August: Too Many Cooks by Rex Stout, a mystery set in the 1930's featuring the eccentric Nero Wolfe and his sidekick Archie Goodwin. I had a hard time keeping the names of the chefs all straight. Look past the racial comments to enjoy the eccentricities of the detective himself, reading the book in its context and the time in which it was written. 4 stars

Aug. 10, 2018, 3:37pm

Number 5 for August: By the Shores of Silver Lake by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Laura and her family move from Plum Creek to homestead on the prairie. Lots of new adventures for the Ingalls family. 5 stars

Aug. 12, 2018, 8:42pm

Just finished Death of a Witch a Hamish Macbeth mystery. He solves four murders in this book, in his usual slow and methodical manner. Hamish also contends with several ladies vying for his affection. The last few chapters after solving the murder are hilarious vignettes of their own, well worth the read. 4.5 stars

Aug. 19, 2018, 2:43pm

Number 7 for August: Friendship Cake. Good beach read, about a group of women who are working on a church cookbook, all of them with different personalities. Yes, there are recipes in this book! The main point of the book is how they are drawn together and help each other through crises of life. 3 stars

Aug. 21, 2018, 8:43am

Number 8 for August: One More Time Just for the Fun of It by Effie Leland Wilder. This is book four in the series about people living in a retirement community. Miss Hattie is definitely showing signs of aging, but still manages to find the humor in the later years of life. This book includes some anecdotes that were sent in by readers of her other books. 3.5 stars.

Aug. 26, 2018, 2:57pm

I just finished Dear Mrs. Bird, a novel about a young woman in London during the air raids of World War II. I really enjoyed this novel and its commentary about the role of women's magazines during the war, as well as the general effect of the bombings on everyday life in London. 5 stars

Aug. 27, 2018, 11:54am

Just finished Ernest Hemingway: A Life from Beginning to End in the Hourly History series. I like the short and concise nature of these books. They may not be scholarly, but do give an overview of the person's life. 4 stars

Bearbeitet: Aug. 29, 2018, 12:12pm

Finished The End of Summer by Rosamunde Pilcher. I am not a big fan of chick lit, which is how I might classify this book. I liked it a lot better when I read it years ago. Seemed like a flimsy plot and rather dated, but probably appropriate for when it was written in the 1990s. Donated it to used books at the YMCA. 3 stars

Also finished Quarrelsome Quartz which was a Cozy Corgi mystery by Mildred Abbott. It was an interesting story, and I like the quirky characters. I think there were some weak spots in the investigation of the murder and in some of the descriptions, but the characters themselves are worth the read. 4 stars

Sept. 1, 2018, 3:04pm

Just finished an excerpt from The Paris Seamstress that I got on NetGalley, posted my review too. Now reading The Monastery Murders, also from NetGalley.

Sept. 2, 2018, 7:14pm

I decided I needed to read some fun and short books to celebrate Labor Day weekend. I have quite a few "little books" that measure four or five inches square. Most of them were gifts. They are great fun to read, so here are the ones I read, in addition to a few kids' books.

Cat Confessions
Smitten with Kittens
Diana, the People's Princess by Donnelly
Diana, The Life of a Princess

Wonderful Alexander and the Catwings
Esio Trot

Sept. 4, 2018, 4:30pm

I just finished the NetGalley book The Monastery Murders. It was rather gruesome and atmospheric, with some unnecessary information. I found the bear-baiting part at the beginning to be rather upsetting, and not sure why it was even included in the book, although there is a thin connection to the plot. The characters were intense and well-drawn. 4 stars

Sept. 5, 2018, 10:55am

I just finished Full House by Maeve Binchy. This is a fun re-read for me. The story tells of how an Irish couple devises a plan to get their adult kids to move out of their house and get out on their own. 5 stars

Sept. 8, 2018, 7:28pm

Another finish--Elizabeth Ann Seton in the Saints by Our Side series of biographies. I only wish I could be as good as she was! 3.5 stars

Sept. 10, 2018, 2:25pm

Aging with Grace: What the Nun Study Teaches Us by David Snowdon has been on my TBR list for years! A very interesting research study, which began with research on Alzheimer's disease, and also provided information on living a healthy life into old age. Some of those nuns lived to be over 100 years old! 5 stars

Sept. 11, 2018, 8:32pm

Just completed Oh, My Goodness! More Surprises from FairAcres by Effie Leland Wilder. This is the final installment in the series of five books, written in diary form, about the senior citizens residing at the FairAcres retirement community. I did not find this one as enjoyable as the other four in the series. It ended rather abruptly. Perhaps the author was running out of material; she mentioned the difficulty of being able to see well enough to write, hence the co-author. 3.5 stars

Sept. 13, 2018, 10:37am

Another finish--Bookstore Cats, which is a photo book of bookstore cats at bookstores in a variety of locations. In addition to photos of the cats in the bookstores, the book included literary tidbits and lists of cats found in literature, mythology, and owned by authors. Some poetry was also included. This was a fun read that featured "famous" bookstore cats. Being a cat lover and a book lover, this was an ideal short read. 4.5 stars

Sept. 21, 2018, 4:53pm

The Cleverness of Ladies by Alexander McCall Smith is a series of short stories. I usually like his work and have read all the Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency books. However, this book fell far short of his usual quality writing. I wondered if these were juvenalia or practice pieces or drafts. One of the stories just made no sense to me at all. 1 star

Sept. 23, 2018, 3:55pm

The Hope Jar by Wand Brunstetter was a NetGalley book that I reviewed. This was not the best of her work, in my opinion, although I liked the themes. The cliffhanger ending really annoyed me, since readers who want a resolution will have to read the next book in the series. 3 stars

Okt. 9, 2018, 10:45am

I went to a huge book fair to support a local food bank--all used books, plus media and other stuff. Oh wow! It was half price day, so I got a couple of bags of books! That does not help with my ideas of weeding my home shelves, or reading the stuff I already own. But the food bank appreciated my contribution. No one should have to go hungry.

We just got back from ten days in Greece, so I did not get to read on this very busy archaeological tour. I did get to read a book on my Kindle for NetGalley while on the airplane.

Okt. 12, 2018, 2:53pm

Just finished four books!
Teacher, Teacher by Jack Sheffield (First in a series--I intend to read the others too.)
Tiny Tilda's Pumpkin Pie by Susan Kantor
Millions of Cats by Wanda Gag
It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! by Charles Schulz
I seem to be reading on an autumn theme! Great fun!

Bearbeitet: Okt. 14, 2018, 12:17am

>72 LadyoftheLodge: I was just in Minneapolis for business and met up with two dear Internet friends/pen pals. They took me to the Minneapolis Institute of Art, where we saw a combo show of two early 20th-century women illustrators, Elizabeth Olds and Millions of Cats artist Wanda Gág. Her work is neat, literally vibrant—she has this very organic, motion-filled style. Plus it was cool to find out more about these trendsetting women and their work, back when being a bit of a bohemian was much more interesting than it is now.

Okt. 16, 2018, 1:23pm

Thanks for sharing these pictures! You are right, her work is very vibrant.

Bearbeitet: Okt. 16, 2018, 1:28pm

I just finished Malice at the Palace (The Royal Spyness Series Book 9) by Rhys Bowen. For some reason, the touchstone would not come up on this one. I have read other books in the series, but not in order. This was a fun and easy read, 4.5 stars.

Okt. 20, 2018, 11:30am

Just finished An Amish Wife for Christmas from NetGalley. Posted my review on Amazon and also the LibraryThing page for this book. This book addressed some social issues, such as vandalism, PTSD, and crime. Some Amish novels I read in the past have been rather sugar coated, as if the Amish community does not experience problems similar to those in Englischer society. 5 stars

Starting Christmas in Evergreen for NetGalley also.

Okt. 25, 2018, 2:29pm

Christmas in Evergreen was a really fun, "feel good" sort of novel. I did not see the movie, and the book sort of read like a movie, so it was easy to picture the story in my mind.

I am now reading The Great Lakes Lighthouse Brides Collection, also for NetGalley.

Bearbeitet: Okt. 27, 2018, 5:00pm

Just finished The Great Lakes Lighthouse Brides Collection and posted my review on NetGalley and LibraryThing. 5 stars

Starting The Queene's Cure by Karen Harper.

Nov. 2, 2018, 10:02pm

I just finished The Queene's Cure which was a very creepy historical novel in the Elizabeth I mystery series. 3.5 stars

I also read The Table Where Rich People Sit by Bryan Baylor, which is a children's book that belonged to my dear departed husband and recommended by a friend. 5 stars--Good reminder, in this season of giving thanks, of what really matters to us and how much it is worth.

Nov. 9, 2018, 8:59pm

I just finished reviewing several books for NetGalley, so will move on now to the Category Challenges for November! Here are my latest:

The Victorian Christmas Brides Collection 5 stars
A Christmas Revelation 4.5 stars
Creating Sanctuary: Sacred Garden Spaces 5 stars
Science Comics: Wild Weather 4.5 stars
The Craft of University Teaching 4 stars

Nov. 15, 2018, 4:52pm

Just finished two books for NetGalley: The Christmas Heirloom 5 stars and Shrubs (gardening book) by Andy McIndoe 4.5 stars.

Nov. 16, 2018, 9:04pm

I just finished Hot Flash Holidays which was just what I needed--some humor, the ability to laugh at ourselves and deal with the changes that come with aging. I finished it in two evenings.Very humorous and so true, best understood by "women of a certain age." Now I need to read the others in the series. 5 stars

Nov. 21, 2018, 8:07pm

Another finish: Amid the Winter's Snow by Tasha Alexander. This is not a "warm, cozy" Christmas story, but it is intriguing. 4.5 stars

Dez. 3, 2018, 5:44pm

Assaulted Caramel by Amanda Flower, while on a Caribbean cruise. This was a gift from my Santa last year.
Malevolent Magic by Mildred Abbott--in the Corgis mystery series, with some holiday magic and weirdness thrown in for good measure.
A Christmas Courting for NetGalley, which was a series of short novellas.

Dez. 11, 2018, 3:40pm

I am nearly finished with The Darling Dahlias and the Poinsettia Puzzle. This is the first book I read in the series, and intend to read the others. I read this one for NetGalley. This was a lot of fun! I have been busy getting my reading selections in order for 2019, probably driving my husband nuts.

Dez. 19, 2018, 7:21pm

Just finished Darling Dahlias and also Batter off Dead by Maymee Bell for NetGalley.

Dez. 19, 2018, 7:23pm

Just finished The Darling Dahlias and the Poinsettia Puzzle and also Batter Off Dead, both for NetGalley.

Bearbeitet: Dez. 21, 2018, 7:58pm

Reading The Little Book Cafe Book Three--Amy's Story for NetGalley review.
Finished These for NetGalley reviews:
The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek
Nature Play at Home
Book Love
Past Due for Murder

Dez. 23, 2018, 7:42pm

I finished my NetGalley books (for now) so I am on to A Nantucket Christmas by Nancy Thayer.