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Tripwire by Lee Child

>> Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Finally!! Between Holiday stuff and Baby Afghan finishing it seems like I’ve been reading at a snails pace the past week or so, but I’ve finally managed to get started and finish my first book for The From the Stacks Challenge sponsored by Overdue Books.
Tripwire by Lee Child

This is third book in Child’s Jack Reacher series. The hero is an ex- military policeman trying to live his life contentedly as a drifter. As it opens, Reacher is living in Key West, hand digging swimming pools by day and working as a bouncer at a strip club by night. A New York private detective shows up looking for him, but Reacher lies and claims to be someone else. By the next day, two unknown thugs are also looking for Reacher and the private detective is dead. This prompts Jack to head to New York to find out who is looking for him and why. A beautiful woman from his past and a villain who is as evil as they come are both part of the answer. Jack is a great character, a charming drifter who uses his military background to protect the good guys and see that the bad guys get what’s coming to them. He’s larger than life, but flawed as any good hero should be. It’s a tension filled thriller and I look forward to continuing with this series.


Baby Afghan for Julie's Baby Boy

>> Monday, November 27, 2006

Yarn - Bernat Baby Boucle
Color - Water Slide


Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear

>> Friday, November 17, 2006

I’ve been hearing good things about this series for quite a while now and finally got around to picking up the first one. As the book begins, Maisie a single 32 year old woman is opening her own business as a private investigator in 1929 London. Her first case is a husband who suspects his wife is being unfaithful. As she begins to investigate, she is drawn into finding out more about a deceased WW1 veteran. Along the way, the reader also learns about Maisie’s own past, education and training. This book is a bit of historic fiction, a bit of romance, and less of a mystery than I’d expected. It’s really more of a slowly and gently told period piece about a woman who is remarkable for her time and place. Ultimately though, Maisie is a thoroughly enjoyable heroine and the setting in post World War I England is one I haven’t encountered much before. I’m looking forward to continuing the series.


Audiobook – Blue Shoes and Happiness

>> Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Now this is a series that I’m happy to continue with. It's also one of the few I'm reading that I'm actually caught up with until the next one comes out (on CD for this series). I really don’t think I’d actually sit and read these as books, but I’ve thoroughly enjoyed listening to the series as commute time and driving around town audiobooks. I could listen to Lisette Lecat for hours on end and just love the way she reads these.


3 from a series you can skip

The Alpine Journey,
The Alpine Kindred,
And The Alpine Legacy
by Mary Daheim

This series of cozy mysteries will never be mistaken for good literature, and not even for very good mysteries. The last time I read one was over a year ago. At this point, I think the only reason I’m still reading this series is that I’ve read so many of them already I kind of feel obligated to finish them. I really need to get over that feeling. Honestly, I can’t even recommend them. The only reason I read all 3 is that I had them out from the library already. One thing they had going for them at this point is that they work for brain vacation material when I’ve got a book (this time it’s The Book Thief) still hanging around in my head and I don’t want to really interfere with that. This series stars Emma Lord as the publisher of a weekly newspaper in a small town in the mountains of Washington. The series begins with The Alpine Advocate (the name of the paper) and continues with the third word in each title making an alphabetical list of the series in order. Maybe I keep reading this series because it appeals to my sense of organization?? Whatever – it’s light, it has some fun quirky characters and overall, I like the Emma Lord character. The fact that there are lots of familiar locations and regional references helps. I tend to let this series sit for months or even a year or more at a time and then get the next 2 or 3 from the library and read them together, then wait a long time before deciding to go ahead and pick up the next few. I always end up saying maybe I won’t bother finishing the series and I’m saying that again this time around. I managed to give up on the Sue Grafton series, so maybe I can finally give up on this one.

The good news is that I can now move along to a book I’ve heard from multiple sources is a good one. Maisie Dobbs is also the last of the library books I’ve got checked out, so when I’m done with that, I can dive into my books for the From The Stacks Winter Challenge.


Challenge Planning

>> Monday, November 6, 2006

I spent some time over the weekend studying my bookshelves and my TBR list to see what I could plan for the upcoming challenges. I also discovered yet another 2007 challenge via A Reader’s Journal – this new one is sponsored by Mizbooks at Literary Cache and involves reading one book a month in 2007 from those that have been languishing unread on your TBR list. Well that’s not hard for me, because my TBR is ginormous!!

I was pleasantly surprised to find that I’ve got several books that will dovetail nicely into all of the challenges I’m participating in. I don’t think I’ve got one yet that qualifies for all 4 challenges, but there’s a couple that I’m counting for 3 of them.

So anyway . . . Here’s the plan (with enough alternates available for substitutions to satisfy my need to fit the reading to the mood).

From the Stacks Winter Challenge sponsored by Overdue Books: November through January – 5 from my bookshelves:

  • Tripwire by Lee Child
  • Snow Mountain Passage by James D. Houston
  • Shadow Divers by Robert Kurson
  • Wicked by Gregory Maguire
  • Til Morning Light by Ann Moore

Alternates and possible additions or substitutions:

  • The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
  • Total Control by David Baldacci
  • Dearly Devoted Dexter by Jeff Lindsay
  • Fire-Ice by Clive Cussler
  • Cry Wolf by Tami Hoag

Classics Challenge sponsored by A Reader’s Journal: 5 Classics in January and February

  • Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  • The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
  • Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Alternates and possible additions or substitutions:

  • Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  • Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift
  • The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger
  • Rebecca by Daphne DuMaurier

Chunkster Challenge sponsored by Bookfool: One Chunkster a month starting in January

  • Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
  • The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
  • Wanderers Eastward, Wanderers West by Kathleen Winsor
  • Theodore Rex by Edmund Morris
  • Voyager by Diana Gabaldon

Alternates and possible additions or substitutions:

  • Dawn on a Distant Shore by Sara Donati
  • Peachtree Road by Anne Rivers Siddons
  • Light a Penny Candle by Maeve Binchy

TBR 2007 Challenge sponsored by Literary Cache: One a month that’s been on the TBR list a long time. (This is where some serious overlap occurs – most of what I have on the list for the Classic and Chunkster Challenges have been on the TBR list for ages so I have double incentive to actually pick them up and read them!)

  • Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
  • The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
  • Wanderers Eastward, Wanderers West by Kathleen Winsor
  • Theodore Rex by Edmund Morris
  • Voyager by Diana Gabaldon
. . . and so on from the alternates lists above.


A Faint Cold Fear by Karin Slaughter

>> Sunday, November 5, 2006

This is the third book in Slaughter’s Grant County series. Like the first two, it’s a well written suspense/thriller, but not without it’s grisly moments. Sara Linton is the part time pediatrician, part time medical examiner in her hometown. The police chief happens to be her ex-husband and current maybe boyfriend. This book opens with the apparent suicide of a college student. While Sara is investigating the scene of the crime, her pregnant sister is brutally stabbed nearby. The two crimes may or may not be related, and Sara and Jeffrey’s investigation leads to a web of intrigue, secrets, and damaged people facing their nightmares.


Challenged by Challenges

>> Friday, November 3, 2006

I really didn't know what to expect when I started my book blog. I guess I figured that I would tell a few friends about it and they would stop in once in a while to see what I'd been reading and what I thought about it. I thought it would be just a place to post a list of recommendations for folks I knew.

What actually happened has been a completely wonderful surprise. I have found myself getting to know a growing group of readers from all over the world. These people have become an ever expanding list of enablers for my reading addiction. See the list of book blog links on the right. I have a whole new source of recommendations, opinions and ideas for my never to be completed To Be Read list.

I have also become interested in several of the upcoming challenges that I've learned tend to pop up in the bookblogging world. I had my own A to Z list times 2 challenge for myself in 2006. I'd been wondering what would be my personal reading challenge for next year. I don't think I need to wonder because I already have 3 challenges I'm going to be participating in and the prospect of more to come.

Here are the upcoming challenges I'm planning on joining:

November through January

The From the Stacks Winter Reading Challenge sponsored by Overdue Books

5 books that we have already purchased, have been meaning to get to, have been sitting on the nightstand and haven't read before.

I so need this challenge - of course I have to finish the 4 books I just checked out from the library before I can start .

January and February

Classics Challenge
Sponsored by A Reader's Journal

5 Classics - I just need to decide which 5. This year I managed to check off several that had been on my list of 'classics I never read', so this will give me a perfect opportunity to read a few more.

January through ???

Bookfool's Chunkster Challenge
I love big books and have a lot of them on my list. Getting some of them moved off the "Not Read Yet" list will be fun. I can also combine at least a couple of them with the Classics Challenge by picking out some Chunky Classics for January and February

What fun :-)


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