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May Photo a Day Challenge

>> Tuesday, April 30, 2013

It's the last day of April. That means that tomorrow starts a fresh new month of Photo-A-Day prompts. If you haven't joined in yet, or haven't been keeping up with the daily photo posting it's a great chance to start new or fresh.

Yes, this is my monthly reminder and review post about Photo a Day. I do this for a couple of reasons. One is to recruit more of my friends to participate and the other is to share my favorites of my photos from the previous month. The Photo a Day Challenge is hosted by Chantelle at Fat Mum Slim. I've been doing this daily photo thing since the middle of March of 2012. I enjoy having more of my online and in person friends join in. I love seeing everyone's photos and how creative folks can be with the daily prompts.

It's not hard and you can participate in so many ways. Looking back through my photos after a few months is fun and I like that it's turned out to be a bit of photo journal with all the little daily memories both small and significant that end up being included.

Every month Chantelle posts a list of subjects or prompts for each day of the month. Chantelle's post about the May list includes some extra explanation and ideas just in case any of the prompts have you stumped.

This is the list for May and Chantelle's instructions:

Click on the image for a larger version or to save to your computer

How to play!

Playing along with photo a day is super easy:
♥ Check out the May photo a day list.
♥ Each day look at the daily prompt and take a photo according to whatever the prompt is.
For example for day 1 the prompt is ‘I bought this!’, so share something you’ve bought. It might be something you purchased today, like a coffee etc or something you love that you picked up some time in the past. It’s a great opportunity to get creative. Be inspired by a little creativity and see what you come up with.
♥ Once you've taken the photo it’s time to share it. There are loads of places you can share it. See below for more details.
♥ Check out other people’s photos. You can browse through them on my Facebook page. Or on Instagram or Twitter just search for the #FMSphotoaday hashtag to see them all.

Where to play?

There are loads of places to be social and share your photos with the #FMSphotoaday community:

♥ Instagram: Just upload your photo, use a fancy filter, add a caption and the hashtag #FMSphotoaday and then share.
♥ Facebook: There are a few options here. You can simply share on your own personal page, among your own friends. Or you can upload to my page’s wall, or I’ve created a Facebook group for 2013. You can join it here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/FMSphotoaday/
♥ Blog: If you have a blog, you could share each day or do a wrap up of all the photos at the end of the month.
♥ Tumblr: Add your daily photos to your Tumblr feed.
♥ Flickr: You can get their app {for free if I remember correctly} and share your photos there, or upload on their web version. We also have a photo a day group here.
♥ Twitter: You can share on Twitter by uploading the photo and sharing the hashtag #FMSphotoaday. Easy.

To keep this easy for me, I only use photos from my phone. Between Instagram and a few other photo applications I have plenty of options for editing photos on my phone. It's fun for me to see what I can do using just my phone and apps.

If you’d like to check out my previous photos they’re on my Tumblr blog at at Whimpulsiveness

I love using ShutterCal too. It gives me several ways to review my daily photos. Montly collages or scrolling through them all. It's a bit of a visual journal. You can see all of my Photo A Day photos in a calendar format. I think this is my favorite way to scan through my past photos. If you decide to use Shuttercal, be sure to let me know or link up with me there.

The most important thing to remember about this is don't overthink it. For me, using only photos from my phone makes it low pressure so I don't feel like I have to have a perfect shot. That helps me to just relax and have fun with it. Even with the photo prompts that are repeated it's fun to try to come up with something different. Sometimes a prompt that was used a couple of months ago can spark a totally different meaning depending on my mood or circumstances that day.

If you've been participating I hope you'll continue or give it another try if you've gotten out of the habit. Please let me know where you are sharing your photos so that I can find them.

I think my April photos are some of my favorites. It was hard for me to pick six of them to feature today. If you want to see the whole month check the month view on Shuttercal.

play
April 1st - play
blue
April 2nd - blue
air
April 6th - air
dreamy
April 7th - dreamy
on your plate
April 8th - on your plate

a place (Pioneer Courthouse 

Square)
April 10th - a place
(Pioneer Courthouse Square)
Just a reminder - click on any of the photos to see a larger version

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Weekend Update April 28, 2013

>> Sunday, April 28, 2013

Weekend Update

Since my last update:

It’s been a crazy couple of weeks and my reading time has suffered a bit but things are gradually returning to normal.

I’m almost finished with Little Elvises. It’s the second book in Timothy Hallinan’s Junior Bender series. It’s been just as much fun as the first. Both The Hubster and I enjoyed Crashed quite a bit and I’m glad that the second in this series has been fun.

I finished Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I need to start On the Banks of Plum Creek for the Little House Readalong. That might be my treadmill book this week.

On audio I finished Year Zero by Rob Reid narrated by John Hodgman. I didn't enjoy that one quite as much as some of my friends. The first half was good but the second half dragged a bit.

We’re took a road trip to southern Oregon a couple of weeks ago and The Hubster and I listened to the first part of Double Whammy by Carl Hiassen (narrated by George Wilson). His books are such craziness but fun and truly entertaining in audio format. I’m still listening to it and enjoying the heck out of it. I should be able to finish that up this week. I’m not sure what I’ll listen to next. so we’ll be listening to a new audiobook together. I’ve got several loaded on the ipod and I’ll let The Hubster make the choice of which we listen to.

I've got a couple of graphic novels out from the library that I need to get to before they’re due so I’m hoping that after I finish Little Elvises I can turn to those for a couple of days.

Other than books and reading:

We saw a couple of great performances at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. My Fair Lady was just delightful. This year’s production of King Lear is good enough to wipe out the bad memories of a not so good production from several years ago.

We had another race last weekend. The Hubster won his age group in the 5 miler and I got second in my age group in the 5k. The important part was that Hopworks Brewing was one of the sponsors so there was good beer at the finish line.

Hopworks Brewing at the Tigard Earth Day Run
Hopworks Brewing at the Tigard Earth Day Run
We've been having a run of fabulous weather and I've been enjoying being able to ignore our treadmill and get my walking done outside
spring blossoms and sunset


My neighbor’s pink dogwood tree is ridiculously pretty right now.
pink dogwood

Working from home is sometimes complicated when Abby wants attention
Abby needs attention


Hope you’re having a great weekend!

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A Murder at Rosamund's Gate by Susanna Calkins

>> Friday, April 26, 2013

A Murder at Rosamund's Gate by Susanna Calkins

A Murder at Rosamund's Gate by Susanna Calkins

Genre: Historical Mystery
Series: #1 in the Lucy Campion series
Publisher: Minotaur
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 338
Source: Copy provided by publisher through Bookbrowse

The Short Version:
In 1665 London a chambermaid finds herself in danger, in love, and in need of the truth regarding who killed a friend.

Why I Read It:
The description of the book sounded interesting and the cover really caught my eye.

The Book:
From the Publisher:

For Lucy Campion, a seventeenth-century English chambermaid serving in the household of the local magistrate, life is an endless repetition of polishing pewter, emptying chamber pots, and dealing with other household chores until a fellow servant is ruthlessly killed, and someone close to Lucy falls under suspicion. Lucy can’t believe it, but in a time where the accused are presumed guilty until proven innocent, lawyers aren't permitted to defend their clients, and—if the plague doesn't kill the suspect first—public executions draw a large crowd of spectators, Lucy knows she may never find out what really happened. Unless, that is, she can uncover the truth herself.

Determined to do just that, Lucy finds herself venturing out of her expected station and into raucous printers’ shops, secretive gypsy camps, the foul streets of London, and even the bowels of Newgate prison on a trail that might lead her straight into the arms of the killer.

My Thoughts:
I wanted to like this one a lot more than I did. I had high hopes. The description was interesting. I was interested in the time period and I liked the cover. Even though the author is up front in her note that she’s updated the language of the period to make the book easier to read I wasn't too worried. Based on the author’s background I had a high confidence level in the historical accuracy of other elements of the book.

Unfortunately it just never captured me. It was slow to start and even though Lucy is the main character and this is intended to be the first in a series, I never felt connected to or involved in Lucy’s point of view. The characters all felt a bit flat and that slowness of the early part of the book continued.

Then partway through the main mystery story line is dropped and a section about the plague begins and the mystery story isn't picked back up until that section is wrapped up plus a lengthy time interval.

All in all it just didn't flow well and felt a bit disjointed. It almost seems as if the author had two stories she was working on involving the same set of characters and that the plague story was simply inserted in between two parts of the murder mystery story.

It was truly just OK and I doubt I’ll read more of this series.

2 stars Rating 2/5

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Wordless Wednesday #184

>> Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Dandelion
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Currently // April 22, 2013

>> Monday, April 22, 2013


Currently

I am totally copying this post format from Estella's Revenge and CapriciousReader and Kim at Sophisticated Dorkiness


Time // 9pm

Place // My recliner in the family room

Eating // nothing because I’m still full from the yummy grilled steak dinner we had

Drinking // the rest of the Cabernet Sauvignon we had with dinner. Natalie’s Estate Elephant Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon


Reading // Little Elvises by Timothy Hallinan. Both The Hubster and I enjoyed the first book in this Junior Bender series. This book is the second in the series and it’s just as much fun

Watching // Last week’s Hawaii Five-0 from last week. We’re in catch-up mode with our DVR recordings right now.

Listening // My current audiobook is Double Whammy by Carl Hiassen. It’s narrated by George Wilson and is just a wacky trek through Florida.

Pondering // My list of “Items Out” from the library vs. my realistic reading time in the next three weeks. It’s not matching up well at all. I have a feeling I’ll be returning and re-requesting at least one book

Blogging // Hoping to get enough reading time this week to get a couple of reviews posted

Promoting // Fitbit – it’s a pedometer only more. Get one. Join us. There are a bunch book bloggers linked up in friendly competition. It’s surprisingly motivating.

Avoiding // looking at my To Do list after an off the rails week

Anticipating // next weekend. The only thing on the calendar is breakfast with friends.

What are you reading? What are you listening to? What are you doing?

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Weekend Update April 20, 2013

>> Saturday, April 20, 2013

Weekend Update

It's been a rough week. Both with events that affected all of us as well as some personal things. So I'm just going to post a few photos that caught my eye as I was browsing through old photo files. That works for this week, doesn't it?



Lime Kiln Lighthouse
Lime Kiln Lighthouse
San Juan Island, Washington


DeLorean
My brother's DeLorean


Howie Kills a box
When Howie was little he had a "all cardboard must die" issue.
It was messy.


King Estate Winery
King Estate Winery
Eugene, Oregon



Hope you’re having a great weekend!

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Audiobook – Year Zero by Rob Reid

>> Friday, April 19, 2013

Year Zero by Rob Reid

Year Zero by Rob Reid

Genre: Science Fiction
Publisher: Recorded Books
Publication Date: 2012 Random House Audio
Length: 9 hours, 54 minutes
Read by: John Hodgman
Source: Purchased

The Short Version:
Aliens love our music, but when they realize that according to existing music copyright laws they owe us all the wealth of the universe chaos ensues.

Why I Read It:
I heard many positive reviews of this and many recommendations for the audio format and it sounded like a fun listen.

The Book:
If I tried to explain the plot of this book I would talk myself (and you) into a DNA strand like twist so I’m going to go with the publisher’s description this time.
Low-level entertainment lawyer Nick Carter thinks it’s a prank, not an alien encounter, when a redheaded mullah and a curvaceous nun show up at his office. But Frampton and Carly are highly advanced (if bumbling) extraterrestrials. The entire cosmos, they tell him, has been hopelessly hooked on American pop songs ever since “Year Zero” (1977 to us), resulting in the biggest copyright violation since the Big Bang and bankrupting the whole universe. Nick has just been tapped to clean up this mess before things get ugly. Thankfully, this unlikely galaxy-hopping hero does know a thing or two about copyright law. Now, with Carly and Frampton as his guides, Nick has forty-eight hours to save humanity—while hoping to wow the hot girl who lives down the hall from him.

My Thoughts:
If you think that sounds wacky, then hang on because that’s only the beginning.

I’m very glad I listened to my friends and listened to the audio version of this one. John Hodgman does an excellent job of narrating the story from Nick’s point of view and also of characterizing the large cast of characters both human and otherwise. He’s got just the right amount of wry humor and appropriate cynicism for the convoluted music rights laws that are needed for this book. It’s got some elements of spot on satire and he nails them perfectly with his narration.

On the whole though this book started out great for me and then somewhere in the second half it felt like it went on just a touch too long, with just a touch too much. I found myself checking my ipod to see how much of the book I had left. I still liked it but I don’t think I liked it quite as much as some of my friends did.

There is a lot of humor in this one and I laughed a lot. The idea that aliens first experience with the music of Earth was when hearing the Welcome Back Kotter theme sent them into paroxysms of bliss is hilarious. From there the story of their introduction to our music is my musical history. Theme songs from shows I watched, to AM radio pop songs, then on to FM Album rock pretty much traced my musical life from junior high into college.

I did enjoy this book but I think I would have enjoyed it more if it had been just a little shorter. I loved the first half but the second half felt a little forced and repetitious.

3.5 stars Rating 3.5/5 for the book

4.5 stars Rating 4.5/5 for the narration



SoundBytes is a weekly roundup of audio book reviews hosted by Jen at Devourer of Books.

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Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder

>> Thursday, April 18, 2013

Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder

Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder

Genre: Juvenile Fiction
Series: #3 in the Little House series (or number 2 depending on which list you look at)
Publisher: Scholastic
Publication Date: originally 1933, this edition 1961
Pages: 372
Source: library


The Short Version:
A year in the childhood of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s future husband Almanzo Wilder.

Why I Read It:
Even though this book isn't technically a part of the Little House Readalong, there was no way I was going to reread the series without reading this one too.

The Book:
Laura Ingalls Wilder tells the story of a year in the childhood of her future husband. In 1866 in upstate New York, nine-year old Almanzo Wilder is at the age where he’s not quite a little kid but also not old enough to do many of the things he’d like.

He helps with the family farm as well as the livestock. As the year goes by he occasionally goes to school when not helping at home, learns to care for a young pair of oxen, and helps with the planting and harvest. As the seasons change Almanzo experiences the routine of life including the hard work and fun times.

My Thoughts:
I am not going to worry about spoilers with this series.

I’m just going to post a few random thoughts that ran through my head as I read this

I always liked this book. It was good to get a glimpse of Almanzo’s childhood in comparison to Laura’s. Clearly the Wilder family was better off than the Ingalls family. I’m not sure Pa Ingalls ever had to worry about having a large amount of cash in the house until he could get it to the bank the next morning.

Re-reading these as an adult from a different perspective and time I can see that a child reading these today would definitely benefit from opportunities to discuss them. While they may portray things that were normal at the time and place they occurred, those times are very different from what is considered appropriate in today’s world.

This was quite clear to me in the early parts of this book. When the older students are known to have beaten the previous schoolteacher so badly that he later died is rather jarring to read today. When Almanzo’s father loans the schoolteacher his bullwhip to deal with the these bullies it’s certainly something I hope that today’s kids have the opportunity to talk about as they read this book.

What the heck is an “air castle”?

And over the center-table hung an air-castle. Alice had made it of clean yellow wheat-straws, set together airily, with bits of bright colored cloth at the corners. It swayed and quivered in the slightest breath of air, and the lamplight ran gleaming along the golden straws.

Some things never change.
Mothers always fuss about the way you eat. You can hardly eat anyway that pleases them.

4.5 stars Rating 4.5/5


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Wordless Wednesday #183

>> Wednesday, April 17, 2013


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Touring my TBR Spreadsheet and Shelves – Random Treasures

>> Tuesday, April 16, 2013


Touring my TBR Spreadsheet and Shelves


Today I’m sharing one of the random treasures on my bookshelves.

The White House and it's Thirty-Two Families

The White House and its Thirty-Two Families by Amy La Follette Jensen.
*note - click on photos for larger versions
title pages
the title spread
Published in 1958, I have no idea how this book ended up on my parents’ bookshelves. I remember picking it up one day when I was bored and wanted something to read. It’s coffee-table book sized so it’s not something you carry around. I remember browsing through it looking at the photos and then starting to read it. It’s actually quite interesting.

During Benjamin Harrison's Presidency
During Benjamin Harrison's Presidency
I discovered that it was later updated and republished at least three times adding the 32nd through 35th families to live in the White House but I've never seen one of those later editions.

Quote from a letter by John Adams
Quote from a letter by John Adams written while he lived in the unfinished White House
The book is about two-thirds photos and one-third text. It covers the story of the White House and the families who lived in it from the time of the initial design process through the Eisenhower years.

East Room decorated for Alice Roosevelt's wedding
East Room decorated for Alice Roosevelt's wedding
I’ve read through the whole book a few times over the years. It’s got short sections about each president and his family and information not so much about their presidencies but about their life in the White House. The photos are fascinating. I was always particularly interested in the ones of the remodeling, expansion and construction over the years.

Discoveries during remodeling
Discoveries during remodeling
The near gutting and rebuilding during the Truman years was the most extensive but in reality the White House has been a work in progress ever since it was first designed.

Construction equipment inside during the rebuilding during the Truman years
Construction equipment inside during the rebuilding during the Truman years
I've hung on to this book because I still occasionally pick it up and browse through it.

What lost random treasures are on your bookshelves?

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Weekend Update April 13, 2013

>> Saturday, April 13, 2013

Weekend Update

Since my last update:
I finished reading Blessed Are Those Who Thirst by Anne Hold. It’s the second in a series featuring a female detective in Oslo. I actually read the eighth in the series first (because it was the first to be translated and released here). After that the earlier books have been released and I’ve really enjoyed getting to know Hanne Wilhelmsen from the beginning of the series. The third book will be out in June and I’m looking forward to reading it.

I started the second book in Timothy Hallinan’s Junior Bender series. Both The Hubster and I enjoyed Crashed so much and I’m glad to be reading the second in this fun series.

I’m also still reading Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder. My plan to finish it this week got derailed but I’m having fun revisiting this series I loved as a child. It’s interesting to look at it again so many years later.

On audio I’m almost finished with Year Zero by Rob Reid and narrated by John Hodgman. I’ll admit that the first half of this book held my interest much more than the second half. Perhaps the uniqueness wore off before the book was over.

We’re off on a road trip this weekend so we’ll be listening to a new audiobook together. I’ve got several loaded on the ipod and I’ll let The Hubster make the choice of which we listen to.

I re-read Saga Volume 1 by Brian K Vaughan this week before I had to return it to the library. I think it was even more impressive the second time around and I rated it five stars the first time. The second volume will be out this summer and I think this is a series I’ll be buying rather than getting from the library. I hope to get The Hubster to read them.

Other than books and reading:

Last Sunday we had another 5k race. This one was in our neighborhood and was put on by the local middle school. It was nice to have a race where the starting line was within walking distance of our front door. The starting time of 9am was nice too. The bad part was that we live in a hilly neighborhood and much of mile three of the course was not only uphill but with an increasing grade on the hill. I shocked myself and finished in a personal best time and got second in my age group. We were also very lucky that the race was almost the only dry hour of the day too.

Today we’re headed to Southern Oregon for one of our trips to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. We’ll be seeing My Fair Lady tonight in a production that doesn’t have an orchestra but the music is provided by two pianos. It’s apparently a version approved by one of the composers (Frederick Loewe). I’ve never seen My Fair Lady so it should be fun. We’ll also be seeing King Lear.

Browsing this week’s iphone photos…
As always click on the photos for a larger version

One day this week I was a bit early and took a nice early morning walk through downtown before work.

“Transcendence”— a sculpture by Keith Jellum
I love architectural and artistic whimsy. The bonus about this downtown Portland building is that this is on the side of the building that faces Salmon Street.

I also love the juxtaposition of old and new.
Jackson Tower Building and Fox Tower Building

One of the Photo A Day assignments this week was “A Place” and I was very happy how this early morning image of Pioneer Square turned out.
Pioneer Square Portland

Oh, and Canada . . . your geese are on their way home.

Canada Geese


Hope you’re having a great weekend!

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Blessed Are Those Who Thirst by Anne Holt

>> Friday, April 12, 2013

Blessed Are Those Who Thirst by Anne Holt

Blessed Are Those Who Thirst by Anne Holt

Genre: Mystery
Series: #2 in the Hanne Wilhelmsen series
Publisher: Scribner
Publication Date: Originally 1994, Translated and released in US 2013
Pages: 211
Source: Library


The Short Version:
During an inordinately warm late spring in Oslo the crime rate rises and Detective Inspector Hanne Wilhelmsen has her hands full both at work and in her personal life.

Why I Read It:
The eighth book in this series (1222) was actually the first translated and released here and I liked it enough to be happy that the earlier books were slated for translation and release. I read the first a few months ago and have been watching my library’s online catalog for it..

The Book:
From the publisher:

It is only the beginning of May but in Oslo a brutal heat wave has coincided with an alarming increase in violent crime. In the latest instance, police investigator Hanne Wilhelmsen is sent to a macabre crime scene on the outskirts of town. An abandoned shed is covered in blood. On one wall an eight-digit number is written in blood. There is no body—nor any sign of a victim. Is it a kid’s prank or foul play? Is it even human blood?

As more bloody numbers are found in isolated locations throughout Oslo, Hanne’s colleague Håkon Sand makes a startling discovery: the digits correspond to the filing numbers of foreign immigrants. All are female, all are missing. Is there a serial killer on the loose in Oslo? How does the killer have access to immigrant data?

Meanwhile, as the trail heats up, the victim of a horrific unsolved rape case and her father have each decided to take justice into their own hands. Hanne and Håkon soon discover that they aren’t the only ones on the hunt for the killer.

My Thoughts:
I broke my only read a series in order rule when 1222 was published in English. Even though I met Hanne Wilhelmsen at a later point in her career I was glad to find out that the earlier books in this series were on the way. Even though I know of things that will happen between now and book eight, I’m enjoying starting at the beginning and learning how Hanne became the woman I met and liked when I read 1222.

Blind Goddess (the first in the series) was also good and very much a setting the stage and characters type of book. The setting in Oslo plants this most definitely in the Nordic Crime Fiction genre. They’re procedurals with interesting characters and situations.

Hanne works closely with prosecutor Hakon Sand. They’re an interesting team and supportive of each other while at the same time keeping some secrets from each other. Hanne is in fact keeping a big secret from everyone she works with. She’s a lesbian in a committed relationship but unwilling to let that be known. Her partner is understandably frustrated and angry. This is causing tension between them and is yet another issue for Hanne to deal with while handling an overwhelming work load and two baffling cases.

I highly recommend this series and also recommend that you start with Blind Goddess and then this one. I think you’ll like Hanne. She and the other recurring characters in this series are strong, interesting and a little quirky but likable. Holt knows her way around a crime story too. She worked for the Oslo Police Department, had a law practice and served as Norway’s Minister of Justice. With that background it’s not surprising that she can put together a smart mystery.

4 stars Rating 4/5

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Wordless Wednesday #182

>> Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Busy Bee

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Envy the Night by Michael Koryta

>> Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Envy the Night by Michael Koryta

Envy the Night by Michael Koryta

Genre: Suspense/Thriller
Publisher: St. Martins/Minotaur Books
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 345
Source: Purchased

The Short Version:
A story of revenge in which no one really knows all the truths.

Why I Read It:
I have been a fan of Michael Koryta since the first book of his that I read. This one was a standalone that I’d missed and fit perfectly for the book with an emotion in the title category for this year’s What’s in a Name Challenge

The Book:
From the Publisher:

In the seven years since he learned that his U.S. marshal father lead a double life as a contract killer—and committed suicide to avoid prosecution—Frank Temple III has mostly drifted through life. But when he learns that Devin Matteson, the man who lured his father into the killing game only to later give him up to the FBI, is returning to the isolated Wisconsin lake that was once sacred ground for their families, it’s a homecoming Frank can’t allow.
My Thoughts:
This is another standalone from Michael Koryta that does not bring in the supernatural elements of some of his books. This one is more of a straight up suspense story.

None of the characters in this book seem to know the whole truth. Everyone has their own little piece but they also all seem to have a healthy dose of misinformation to go along with the facts.

Nora, the local girl who gets caught up in the mess when bad guys, law enforcement and Frank all converge on her struggling car repair shop is the one who has my sympathy. All of these other characters have their own contributions to the mess but she gets caught up in it simply because a fender bender lands the mess in her garage

This one is all about revenge but it is also about how revenge is never as simple as it seems. All of the storylines that converge are complicated by either lies or omissions of vital information somewhere along the way.

I can see this story making a great suspense movie. As the final acts play out on the resort lake, the visual elements almost play out before your eyes. It all comes down to an tense and exciting conclusion that proves that Koryta doesn’t need supernatural stuff to create a great thriller.

4 stars Rating 4/5

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Weekend Update April 7, 2013

>> Sunday, April 7, 2013

Weekend Update

Since my last update:
I finished reading A Murder at Rosamund’s Gate by Susanna Calkins. It’s the first in a planned series of mysteries set in later 1600’s London with a maidservant as the main character. I’ll admit it was just kind of an OK book for me. I probably won’t bother with future books in the series.

I started reading Blessed are Those Who Thirst by Anne Holt. It's the second in a mystery series featuring a female detective in Oslo. The first book in this series to be translated and released here was actually the eighth in the series. Since then they've released the first two.

I’m also still reading Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I plan on finishing that up this week. The Little House Read Along is skipping Farmer Boy and going straight to On the Banks of Plum Creek for the April book so I need to read both of them this month.

On audio I’m still listening to Year Zero by Rob Reid and narrated by John Hodgman. I’m in the second half of it but haven’t had much listening time this week other than in the car. It’s a fun book with some wacky aliens and fun satire.

I haven’t picked up a new graphic novel yet. I still want to re-read Saga before I have to take it back to the library and I’ve got a couple of others out from the library.

This week’s schedule looks like I’ll have some good chunks of reading time so I hope to finish up some of these.

Other than books and reading:

We lucked out last weekend. We’d planned to go to the zoo last Sunday because we figured it might not be too crowded on Easter. The weather turned out to be downright perfect for a day at the zoo.

Rose-Tu and Lily
Rose-Tu and Lily
We got to see the 4 month old elephant calf Lily and her mom Rose-Tu. Lily is just adorable.
She runs a lot and when she’s near her mom Rose-Tu gently nudges her with a foot or her trunk to keep Lily from getting in the way or into trouble.


The hippo was happy to have a warm sunny day.
Happy Hippo
Happy Hippo



Give a dwarf mongoose an Easter Egg and it’ll know exactly what to do.
Dwarf mongoose
Dwarf mongoose



Our first reaction to this was "Where are the Weasleys?"
Welcome to the Burrow
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We've got another 5k race this morning. The weather looks pretty awful but it’s close to home and in support of our local middle school. At least we’ll get home quickly after the race.

Hope you’re having a great weekend!

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