Monday, January 31, 2011

Random Read Monday Is Here Again!

Somehow, I really believe that there are a few days missing in the week.  It's Monday again?!  Wow.  So, I'm still working on last week's Random Read, but I have picked out another for this week.  This time it's on my Nookcolor.  It's been on there for about 6 months so it's time to read it!  This week's pick is....

This is a paranormal romance by a woman who's books are consistent sellers in our store.  It's the first in a series about a woman searching for her sister's murderer, and she runs into things that aren't of this world....
Since we're expecting a huge snowstorm in the next two days, this is the perfect book for a gloomy, snowy day.  And there's a hot guy in it to boot!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

What Are You Reading This Week?

Mr. Linky is here again!  So please, take a moment to add what you've been reading to the link below.  Be sure to include your blog address; but if you don't have one, add your reading choices anyway!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Random Read Monday

Here it is Monday again, and I've got to pluck another book off the shelf to read.  This really is a great way to get through my backlog of books.  Seriously, some of them I bought 2-3 years ago and still haven't read.  This week's pick is the first novel in a teen series and takes place in Australia.  It reminded me of the movie Red Dawn, which I saw in my teens many moons ago:

Tomorrow, When the War Began
I think I need to mix up my reading a bit.  I seem to be falling into the witchy trap.  While I do love books with a witchcraft theme, I don't like to read one after another.  This girl needs a break, so the invasion of a country, with teens left to work out the mess, sounds like a complete and utter break from that theme, don't you think? I've had to delay starting some books I've picked out to read, but I will put them back on my Good Reads widget.  I will get back to them in a few weeks.

I have to say, I'm scrambling to get my Random Read Monday books read each week, since I'm also reading other books at the same time.  But I love it!  Mr. Linky will be here soon, so ready your list of what you've been reading this past week.  

Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Witch's Daughter by Paula Brackston

Here's my review from BN.Com about this wonderful novel:

 I loved this book. I was intrigued by the story of Bess, who lives in England in 1628 near a small village. She's a young teenager, living a simple yet happy life with her family on their farm. She has a crush on the local well to do young man, and life is good. The strange man in the woods, Gideon, keeps to himself and is rather mysterious and unsettling. She doesn't know what to make of him. Then misery comes to the village, and when all is said and done, Bess is forced to go to Gideon to save her life and keep a promise to her mother. Bess quickly learns what Gideon is all about--he's a warlock--and he's determined to have Bess as his partner in magical power. Bess flees, and so begins her journey through the centuries, always either denying her power as a witch, or using it only for good. Gideon follows her through the centuries, always finding her and forcing her to continue her desperate attempts to have a peaceful life in a new location. This was a great read! I am so glad I picked this one up. Paula Brackston writes so well, and her attention to detail brings not only 1628 England to life, but also 1888 London, 1917 France, and modern day England, where Bess is forced to make her final stand against Gideon. He's one nasty creature, and you will fall in love with Bess. She's a wonderful character, who's immortality is both a blessing and a curse. If you are curious about magic and the differences in variations on witchcraft, plus just want to read a good story, pick this up. One of my favorite reads this year!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Random Read Monday

It's Random Read Monday,  so that means I'm picking another book off my bookshelves to read.  This week, it's The Knights of the Cornerstone by James P. Blaylock.  It's another book that's been sitting there for a few years, so it's time to read it!  I'm in the mood for a good fantasy novel.  

I'm still plugging away at last week's random read, too.  It's the book I take to the gym and read on the bike.  Hope to finish it this week, too.  The books are piling up!  My goal for January is 12 books; I have four to go.  If I finish my two random reads, and two more books I've signed out from work, I will make it with time to spare.  

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Instruments of Darkness by Imogen Robertson

This is for anyone who's a fan of historical mysteries, including the wonderful Mistress of the Art of Death. It takes place in 1780 England, and someone is killing the folks of a small village who all have a secret to keep. Harriet, the wife of a sea captain, and Crowther, a mysterious gentleman who has studied human anatomy and medicine, meet and work together to solve the murders and their connection to the Thornleigh family, who's estate oozes evil and darkness. A great read, a clever story, and attention to detail that will keep you on the edge of your seat! It will be published in February of 2011. Ooh, if only they had the forensic knowledge we have today!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Arcadia Falls by Carol Goodman

Arcadia Falls by Carol Goodman is a story about making the choice between motherhood and a life as an artist, the painful coping of loss, and the mysterious deaths of two women, one in 1947, and one over 50 years later.  How are the deaths connected?  What clues can be found in Lily's journal, which Meg, the main character, finds hidden behind the tiles of her fireplace?  

Meg travels to Arcadia Falls in upstate New York to begin a new life as a teacher in folklore at an artist's school founded in the 1920's by Vera and Lily, two lovers who turned a summer artist's colony into a thriving school for the arts.  Lily's mysterious death at the bottom of a cliff in the winter of 1947 is intertwined with Meg's arrival at school, and the tragic death of a student who is found dead at the same spot as Lily was all those years ago.

Meg's fascination with Vera and Lily, and their fairy tale, The Changeling, soon finds her delving deeper in the mysteries that swirl around the school campus.  Who is who, and what is the real truth behind Vera, Lily, and Ivy, the Dean at the school who first arrived in 1946 as a 16 year old orphan.  

Set in a wooded, secluded area, this novel is lush with descriptions of fairy tales, magical woods, and women in white who flit through the trees.  Is it all imagination, or is something other worldly happening?  I really like Carol Goodman's writing, and this is a perfect fall or winter's night read.  

Monday, January 10, 2011

Random Read for the Week

I've decided to have Mondays be my Random Read day.  Sometimes I have a difficult time picking something new to read because I have so many choices, so this is my solution.

Every Monday I will go to my bookshelves and pick a book I haven't read and read it that week.  This will not only get me to read the many mysteries, romances, and science fiction titles I have on my shelves, but stop me from dithering!

This week's pick is Defending Angels by Mary Stanton.  It's a mystery about a young woman who moves to Savannah to take over her uncle's law firm, but she finds the clients are already dead....hmmm.  Looks like a fun mystery!

And yes, the picture is of me.  I always like to wear a cap and a pretty dress when I read.  :)

If you didn't see my previous post, check it out and add what you're reading and your blog to the Linky!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

What Have You Been Reading? I Wanna Know!

Alright folks, I'm going to attempt to do this every Sunday, to help keep us all focused on our year long Reading Challenge!  So, I've talked to Mr. Linky, and I've concocted a link so you can share what you've read in the past week with others.  

Don't be shy...come on, let us know!  

Friday, January 7, 2011

Linky is Coming!

Just an FYI to let you know I'm working on getting Linky up for the blog, so everyone can share what they're reading.  Right now I've got a lot going on this weekend (work and a family Christmas party), so hopefully it will be early next week!

In the meantime, hope everyone is reading something good and keeping track of what you're reading.  

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Murder Room by Michael Capuzzo

Fans of The Devil in the White City or The Poisoner's Handbook will love this non-fiction book about the Vidocq Society, a group of renowned forensic experts, detectives, and police officers who gather once a month in a Philadelphia restaurant to go over cold cases that have been deemed "unsolvable".  

With a solve rate of 90%, these men and women are brilliant in using their collective knowledge of criminals to look over files and consult with police to solve murders from the 1950's all the way up to 1999.  All the murders are heartbreaking, and you find yourself cheering these men and women on as they go over case files obsessively, turning over every detail from these crimes.

One of the founders of the Society, Frank Bender, is an artist who sculpts busts from murder victims skulls, re-creating their faces with a gift he refuses to call psychic, but an ability to tune into the universe.  Mocked by many of his fellow society members, he commands respect in his uncanny ability to pinpoint exactly what people looked like and give details about the crime that only the victim could provide.  He has a gift that has helped to solve many crimes. 

Another man is Richard Walters, a profiler of extraordinary skill who can look over a case file and accurately describe the criminal, right down to his job description and were he might be living.  This man is just flat out brilliant.

These men and women are the speakers for the dead who patiently wait to be vindicated. They provide closure to family left behind with nothing but grief and unanswered questions, and work tirelessly to solve crimes.

If you have a queasy stomach, don't read this.  It really does bring home the fact that there is true evil in this world, and much of it walks around on two legs, looking only to appease it's appetite for destruction.  But if you're fascinated by all things forensics (like I am) and want to learn a bit about how cold cases can still be solved, this is a great book for you.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A Wrinkle in Time

This is one of those books that everyone but me read as a child.  It was written in 1962, so it's been around even longer than me, and has been a classic in children's literature since it was first released.

Meg, her brother Charles Wallace, and Calvin, a teenage boy from school, journey via the tesseract to another dimension in search of her father, who is on a 'research' trip that has stretched for years, and left the family to deal with the gossip of the town claiming he left his family.  What Meg and her companions find is the dreadful IT, an evil being that is intent on spreading it's horror throughout the universe.  

I was thoroughly charmed by this novel.  I don't know why it took me so long to read it.  I got a wild hair about a month ago, and bought in on my Nookcolor, with the intention of reading more classic children's literature.  I am so glad I read this early on this year, as I plan on finishing the rest of the Wrinkle in Time Quartet throughout the year.  

If you haven't read this book, or read it as a child, pick it up and read it.  It's a short tale about good vs. evil and the ever brilliant power of love.  

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Start Your Reading Engines Now!

The reading challenge has begun.  What are you reading?  I just want to gather everything I have at home to read, put it in a big pile and stare at it.  But that would be weird, wouldn't it?  Instead, I'll write down what I have at home to read, and tell myself over and over that for the next two months, I have to read what I've already got.  The books I do want, but don't have, will be patiently waiting for me when I'm ready to buy them.

Get cracking, people!  It's too cold to do anything else, so pile on the blankets, grab a warm drink, and proceed to get your reading groove on.