Saturday, August 28, 2010

Catching Fire

So winning The Hunger Games isn't all it's cracked up to be, at least not when President Snow hates you, the districts are restless and there's a Quarter Quell to be had. This starts a little slow, but ends on such a rush that I ran out to the library to pick up the 3rd and final book in the trilogy. I sure am glad I waited to read this series after all the books were out.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Tooth and Nail

Inspector Rebus goes to London in the 3rd novel. I'm still very much enjoying this series. I like Rebus and his family members and this novel does a great job of dislocating Rebus while he continues his usual task of solving murder mysteries. On to the 4th!

Sunday, August 22, 2010


This crime novel is written as a fictitious after the fact diary, an interesting conceit. But talk about your unreliable narrator. Nevertheless an interesting take on a crime and its affect on a family. I enjoy Denise Mina and will read more of her work. I especially liked how the story ended; not at all sappy.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Theodore Boone Kid Lawyer

I ran out of books at the beach, so I picked up this from my son. It was pretty much what I expected in a John Grisham kid's book. Theo Boone is sort of a modern day Encyclopedia Brown, but I have a hard time seeing what kid really wants to read about courts and their procedures. It's a little too literal for my taste, and very predicatable. If this turns into a series I won't be following it.

Can You Forgive Her?

This book also is part of a continuing ed class. I had never read any Trollope, but I have read much of the Forsyte sage. This is much like that, though with much less horrid characters. Definitely a book of its time, but the humor in the book still rings true and I find this world a lovely one to escape into. As soon as my Kindle arrives I'm going to lead the rest of the series onto it as well as the Barcester series. I look forward to going back with Trollope.

The Hunger Games

Basically a version of Survivor in a post-apocalyptic United States where teenagers win by literally surviving as they try to kill one another in the arena for the amusement of the Capitol. This is the first book of a trilogy. I have No. 2 now and 3 will be out next week. I can't wait to see what happens next in District 12.

From Eden to Exile

This is the text of a continuing ed class being offered at my college that I was somewhat interested in. The idea is to look at what archeological evidence and other evidence is there to support of refute the Biblical account of the "historical" books of the Old Testament. This turned out to be a great disappointment though, mainly because there's much more lack of evidence of anything than proof of the truth or lack thereof of most accounts. I also disliked the authors assumption (unfounded to my thinking due to a lack of textual dating) that the writers of the Bible ripped off other traditions rather than the other way around.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Namesake

I wish this woman would write more! As with her other works, this novel, though longer than her usual outing is no less a delicious bon bon to be unwrapped and savored. I don't know what it is about the immigrant Indian dislocated to Massachusetts story that so enraptures this girl whose family has lived in the South since the Revolutionary War, but I love to read anything by Jhumpa Lahiri.

Every Secret Thing

Well I thought I was going to be returning to the Baltimore of Tess Monaghan, but no, this was a stand alone novel. Still set in Baltimore though Baltimore County, this story bounced back and forth from past to present for numerous characters ending in a satisfying twist and a heart-breaking one as well. Laura Lippman definitely proved she had more than one set of characters up her word processor.

Knots and Crosses, Hide and Seek

Another book I can attribute to Scotland. While in The Elephant House we saw Mr. Rankin mentioned and so looked him up upon our return. This is the first Inspector Rebus novel written in 1987. I enjoy reading about police work that's not loaded with DNA and cell phone records, so I very much enjoyed this and the next Rebus novel, Hide and Seek.

I look forward to following Inspector Rebus progress through the next couple of decades.

The Hill of the Red Fox

I found out about this book in Scotland. It's set on the Isle of Skye, Trotternish to be more specific. It's quite a good boy's adventure novel in the style of Stevenson. I enjoyed the book, but all in all because I enjoyed being reminded of where we had been and of the simpler times of the post-WWII era.

The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest

The beginning of this book is pretty redundant, so I'm glad it had been a while since I finished The Girl Who Played With Fire. But oh how sad I am that this is the end. I hope the movies manage to do the books justice. I saw The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo all over the beach.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

This has been on my to read list for a long time, and I finally found it at the library. It's always been checked out before. This was a super fast read because it's not that long and it's written in the form of letters (and telegrams and diary entries), but what a pleasure those few hours were. Set in the immediate aftermath of WWII, the novel relates the story of the occupation of the British Island of Guernsey by the Germans for the duration of the war. The characters are each unique and delightful and undaunted for the most part by the privations brought on by the war. It's nice to read a story that touches your heart, but doesn't have to resort to the salacious or overly graphic depiction to do it.

Love Over Scotland, The World According to Bertie, The Unbearable Lightness of Scones

And thus concludes the 44 Scotland Street series, at least to date. I hope it's not the end because I still want to know what happens next to this lovely cast of characters and their unique town. Everyday life, well heightened everyday life, can be enjoyable to read about especially in the hand of a gifted character writer, and this series definitely delivers on that account.