Monday, July 31, 2006

A Book Meme

Meme Instructions : Look at the list of books below. Highlight in red the ones you’ve read, highlight in green the ones you might read, leave the ones you won’t read in black, italicize the ones on your book shelf, and place parentheses around the ones you’ve never even heard of.

The DaVinci Code by Dan Brown
The Cacther in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
The Hitchhhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas adams
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The Time Traveler's Wife by audry Niffenegger
His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Girl in Hyacinth Blue by Susan Vreeland
Animal Farm by George Orwell
Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkein
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
Lord of the Flies by William Golding
1984 by George Orwell
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaba by J.K. Rowling
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
Slaughterhouse 5 by Kurt Vonnegut
Angels and Demons by Dan Brown
Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
(Crytonomicon by Neal Stephenson)
The Secret History by Donna Tartt
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell
The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkein
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Good Omens by Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman (I have read a couple others by Pratchett!)
Atonement by Ian McEwan
(The Sadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zago)
The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
Dune by Frank Herbert
The History of Love by Nichole Krauss

Email me if you would like a copy of the list without my markings -- so you can mark it up yourself.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Face Down Before Rebel Hooves (#6 in Susanna Appleton series)

by Kathy Lynn Emerson (read July 2006)
Lady Appleton finds herself embroiled in a treasonous plot to overthrow Queen Elizabeth. Great cozy mystery. Rating of 4.5 out of 5. This series is not classic literature, but I rate them high because of the enjoyment factor and they are well-written with good plots. Several surprises, too.

'To Be Read' List

I do not intend to read all the books on this list, which serves only as an aid to me when I'm searching for a book at the library, bookstore, or online. It provides a common place to record book. Up until now I've written these down on pieces of napkins, scraps of papers, postcards, etc and shoved them in my purse.

* indicates books I own
@ refers to books my city library claims to own
@A indicates an Audio recording at the city library
# books that neither the library or I own
Sh any other initials indicate someone I know who owns the book

#Abraham, Pearl The Romance Reader
*Ackerman, Diane An Alchemy of Mind
*Adichie, Chimamanda Ngozi Purple Hibiscus
Agee, James A Death in the Family
@Albert, Susan Wittig(China Bayles mystery series)
Thyme of Death
Witches' Bane
Hangman's Root
Rosemary Remembered
Rueful Death
Love Lies Bleeding
Chile Death
Lavender Lies
Mistletoe Man
Indigo Dying
Dead Man's Bones
Bleeding Hearts
Spanish Dagger
#Alexander, Tash And Only to Decieve
#Ali, Ayaan Irsi The Caged Virgin
#Atwood, Margaret The Handmaid's Tale
*Austen, Jane Persuasion
@Aw, Tash The Harmony Silk Factory (quit after 100 pages)
#Ban Breatnach, Sarah Romancing the Ordinary
*Barr, Nevada Track the Cat, Deep South
*Barrett, Andrea The Voyage of the Narwhal
Barron, Stephanie Jane Austen Mystery series
@Jane and the Unpleasantness at Scargrave Manor
#Jane and the Man of the Cloth
#Jane and the Wandering Eye
#Jane and the Genius of the Place
@Jane and the Stillroom Maid
@Jane and the Prisoner of Wool House
#Jane and the Gosts of Netley
#Jane and His Lordship's Legacy
#Jane and the Barque of Frailty
@Barry, John M. The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History
#Basbane, Nicholas Every Book Its Reader (4-5*)
*Berg, Elizabeth Ordinary Life (ShortSt)
*Berry, Liz The China Garden (5* YA)
#Beverly-Whitmore, Miranda The Effects of Light
Binchy, Maeve The Evening Class
@A Binchy, Maeve Scarlet Feather
*Bloom, Harold How to Read and Why (NF)
*Boston, L.M. The Children of Green Knowe (Child's Classic)
#Boyle, T.C. Talk Talk
@Brooks, Geraldine Year of Wonders
*Brown, Dan Angels and Demons
Bryson, Bill A Walk in the Woods
*Buckley, Fiona To Shield the Queen
*Bujold, Lois Cordelia's Honor (4.5* YA)
@Bujold, Lois The Curse of Chalion (4.5* YA)
Buzbee, Lewis The Yellow-Lighted Bookshop
#Calhoon, Dia Aria of the Sea (4.5* YA)
@Calhoun, Dia Firegold (4.5* YA)
Calvino, Italo If On a Winter's Night a Traveler
#Carey, Peter Theft: A Love Story
*Casey, John Spartina
*Chartier, JoAnn Love Untame (ShortSt)
Sh Chevalier, Tracey The Lady and the Unicorn
@Clancy, Tom The Cardinal of the Kremlin
*Clark, Joan A Word for Home (YA: set in Newfoundland)
@Clark, Mary Higgins Two Little Girls in Blue
Coben, Harlan Gone for Good
Coben, Harlan Myron Bolitar Mystery series
Deal Breaker
Drop Shot
Fade Away
Back Spin
The False Move
*Coelho, Paul The Alchemist (4-5*)
#Colen, Harlan Just One Look
Collins, Suzanne Gregor the Overlander: Book 1 in the Underland Chronicles (4.5* YA)
Compote, Truman In Cold Blood
Corrigan, Maaureen Leave Me Alone I'm Reading
@Crombie, Suzanne A Share in Death (Mys)
Cullen, Lisa Takeuchi Remember Me: A Lively Tour of the New American Way of Death (NF)
deAlarcon, Pedro Antonio (Spain) The Three Cornered Hat
*deLint, Charles Dreams Underfoot (ShortSt)
Dickey, James Deliverance
#Dominque, Ronly The Mercy of Thin Air (4.5*)
#Dorrestein, Renate A Heart of Stone
#Douglas, Ken Dead Ringer
*Drabble, Margaret The Needle's Eye
*Dunant, Sarah Hannah Wolfe Mystery Series
@Dunant, Sarah In the Company of the Courtessan (4*)
*Dunant, Sarah Mapping the Edge (4*)
*Dunning, John Booked to Die (1st in Cliff Janeway mystery series)
@Duprau, Jeanie The City of Ember
Dykeman, Wilma Tall Woman
@Eager, Edward Half Magic
Emerson, Kathy Lynn Susanna Applteon Mystery Series
*Face Down in the Marrow Bone Pie (April 2006)
*Face Down Upon an Herbal (May 2006)
*Face Down Among the Winchester Geese (May 2006)
*Face Down Beneath the Eleanor Cross (June 2006)
*Face Down Under the Wych Elm (June 2006)
*Face Down Before Rebel Hooves (July 2006)
Face Down Across the Western Sea
Face Down Below the Banqueting House
@Face Down Beside St. Anne's Well
Face Down Over the Border
*Emerson, Kathy Lynn Winter Tapestry
*Esehagu, Rosemary The Looming Fog
Evanovich, Janet Stephanie Plum mystery series
@One for the Money
@Two for the Dough
*Fadiman, Anne Rereadings
Franklin, Tom Hell at the Breech
@Fazer, Charles Cold Mountain
Gabalon, Diana (Outlander series)
@ADragonfly in Amber
@ADrums of Autumn
@AThe Fiery Cross
@AABreath of Snow and Ashes
#Gaiman, Neil Anansi Boys (4.5* YA)
Gardner, Sally I, Coriander (4.5* Youth)
#Gilbert, Elizabeth Eat, Pray, Love
#George, Sara The Beekeeper's Pupil
Jen Golden, Arthur Memoirs of a Geisha
Goldhagen, Shari Family and Other Accidents (4.5*)
#Greenan, Russell It Happened in Boston
Greiman, Lois Unzipped
*Grimes, Martha The Man with a Load of Mischief
@A Guildfoild, Kevin Cast of Shadow (4* Thriller)
*Guill, Jane Nectar From a Stone
Haggard, H. Rider She
*Hale, Shannon Goose Girl (5*YA)
*Hale, Shannon Enna Burning (5* YA)
*Hale, Shannon Princess Academy (4.5* Newberry Honor)
@Hammett, Dashiell The Maltese Falcon
Harper, Karen Elizabeth I Mystery series
The Poyson Garden
The Tidal Poole
The Twilight Tower
Harris, Jane The Observations
@Harris, Joanne Gentlemen & Players (Suspense)
Hershey, John A Bell for Adano
#Hill, Susan The Various Haunts of Men
*Hirsh, M.E. Kabul
*Hobb, Robin Assassin's Apprentice
Hoffman, Alice The Ice Queen
Holby, Winifred Land of Green Ginger
*Howard, Linda Son of the Morning
Indridason, Arnaldur Silence of the Grave
Aly Irving, John A Prayer for Own Meany
#Ives, David Monsieur Eek (Youth)
Japin, Arthur (Netherlands) In Lucia's Eyes
#Jelhoun, Tahar Ben This Blinding Absence of Light
Jennings, Maureen Detective Murdoch series
#Except the Dying (book #1)
*Jensen, Liz Ark Baby
#Jensen, Liz My Dirty Little Book of Stolen Time
*Jensen, Liz The Ninth Life of Louis Drux
#Johnson, Laurel The Alley of Wishes (5*)
*Jones, Edward The Known World
@A Kanon, Joseph The Good German
Karon, Jan The Miford Series
@At Home in Mitford
*A Light in the Window
@These High Green Hills
@Out of Canaan
*A New Song
*A Common Life
*In This Mountain
@Kava, Alex A Perfect Evil (Book 1 of Maggie O'Dell mystery series)
@Kerr, Phillip The Akhenaten Adventure (Children of the Lamp series YA)
Killian, Diana The Poetic Death series
*Rhymes and Misdemeanors
*Verse of the Vampyre
@Kimmel, Haven A Girl Named Zippy (NF)
#Knox, Elizabeth Dreamhunter: Book One of the Dream hunter Duet (YA)
*Koontz, Dean Brother Odd (Not published yet, but I've preordered it)
*Koontz, Dean The Frankenstein Series (3 books)
Koryta, Michael Tonight I Said Goodbye
@Kring, Sandra The Book of Bright Ideas (5*)
@Krauss, Nicole The History of Love
Kross, Jaan (Estonia) The Czar's Madman
#Lalami, Laila Hope and Other Dangerous Pursuits (5*)
Laskas, Jeannie Fifty Acres and a Poodle
@Lavigne, Michael Not Me (4.5*)
@Lawson, Mary Crow Lake
#Little, Patricia The Angel's Cup (4.5*)
*Liss, David A Spectacle of Curruption
*Levy, Andrea Small Island
*Lewis, C.S. The Great Divorce
*Lewis, C.S. Screwtape Letters
*Lewis, C.S. Till We Have Faces
#Lusseyran, Jacques And There Was Light (AutoBio)
#Malladi, Amulya Song of the Cuckoo Bird (4*)
Mom Markandava, Kamala Nectar in a Sieve
#Martin, Kirk Shade of the Maple (4.5*)
#McCrae, Jackson Tippett The Bark of Dogwood (4.5*)
*McCrumb, Sharyn The Ballad of Frankie Silver
#McKay, Ami The Birth House
#Miller, Andrew Ingenious Pain
#Minnot, Eliza The Brambles (4.5*)
*Mitchell, Joseph The Bottom of the Harbor (ShortSt)
*Monfredo, Miriam Grace Seneca Falls Inheritance
@A Morgan, Marlo Mutant Message Down Under
#Murdock, Dame Iris The Bell (4.5*)
Murray, Victoria Taylor (The Lambert series)
#Thief of Hearts
#Friendly Enemies
#Le Fin
#Neville, Katherine The Eight (4* Thriller)
*Norman, Diana A Catch of Consequence
Novik, Naomi Temeraire Dragon series
@His Majesty's Dragon
@Throne of Jade
@Black Powder War
Page, Katherine Hall Faith Fairchild mystery series
The Body in the Belfry
The Body in the Kelp
The Body in the Bouillon
The Body in the Vestibule
The Body in the Cast
The Body in the Basement
#Payne, Holly The Virgin's Knot
#Parker, T. Jefferson The Fallen (5*)
Peters, Elizabeth Amelia Peabody series
@Crocodile on the Sandbank
@Curse of the Pharaohs
@The Mummy Case
@ Lion in the Valley
@The Deeds of the Disturber
@The Last Camel Died at Noon
@The Snake, the Crocodile, and the Dog
@The Hippopotamus Pool
@Seeing a Large Cat
@The Ape Who Guards the Balance
@The Falcon at the Portal
@He Shall Thunder in the Sky
@Lord of the Silent
@The Golden One
@Children of the Storm
@Guardian of the Horizon
@Serpent on the Crown
@Tomb of the Gold Bird
*Pilcher, Rosamund Shell Seekers (4.5*)
*Pilcher, Rosamund September (4.5*)
@Pilcher, Rosamund Under Gemini (4.5*)
Preston, Douglas and Childs, Lincoln Pendergast series
Cabinet of Curiosities
Dance of Death
Book of the Dead
Pullman, Phillip His Dark Materials Trilogy
@A The Golden Compass
@A The Subtle Knife
@A The Amber Spyglass
#Riley, Judith The Oracle Glass
#Riley, Judith Vision of Light
@A Rimington, Stella At Risk
Robb, J.D. Eve Dallas mystery series
Memory in Death
Glory in Death
@A Immortal in Death
Rapture in Death
Ceremoy in Death
Vengeance in Death
Holiday in Death
@Robinson, Marilynne Gilead (4.5*)
@Rosoff, Meg How I Live Now (4.5* YA)
Ruddick, James Death at the Priory
Rushdie, Salman Haroun and the Sea of Stories
@Russell, Mary Doria A Thread of Grace
Russo, Richard, Straight Man
Salzman, Mark Lying Awake
#Sansevieri, Penny Candlewood Lake (4.5*)
#Savage, Sam Firmin: Adventures of a Metropolitan Lowlife (5*)
*Schaeffer, Susan Fromberg The Snow Fox
*Scott, Joanna Catherine Cassandra Lost
@Scottoline, Lisa Dirty Blonde
*Seton, Anya Green Darkness
*Seton, Anya Katharine
Sharratt, Mary, The Vanishing Point
#Sheehan, Aurelie History Lessons for Girls
#Sheridan, Rie The Lute and the Liar (5* YA)
Sholes, Lynne The Grail Comspiracy
Shors, John Beneath a Marble Sky
Simon, Scott Pretty Birds
#Siroka, Jane Maddalena
Skolkin-Smith, Leora Edges: O Israel, O Palestine (4.5* NF)
Soesbee, Ree Wind of Honor (Four Winds Saga)
Smith, Alexander McCall #1 Ladies Detective Agency series
@A Blue Shoes and Happiness
@A Cupboard Full of Life
#Smith, Dodie I Capture the Castle
Smith, Dominic The Mercury Visions of Louis Daguerre
Staikos, Andreas (Greece) Les Liaisons Culinaires
@Sparks, Nicoholas Three Weeks With My Brother
*Stewart, May The Crystal Cave
Stokes, Penelope J. The Blue Bottle Club
#Straight, Susan A Million Nightingales (4*)
#Straight, Susan I Been in Sorrow's Kitchen and Licked Out All the Pots (4.5*)
Stroud, Jonathan The Bartimaeus Trilogy
@Amulet of Samarkand
@The Golem's Eye
@Ptolemy's Gate
#Sundararaj, Aneeta Snapshots!
@A Tan, Amy The Opposite of Fate (4.5* Bio)
@Tan, Amy The Bonesetter's Daughter
@Tan, Amy The Hundred Secret Senses
Taylor, D.J. Kept: A Victorian Mystery
*Taylor, Sarah Stewart O' Artful Death, Mansions of the Dead, Judgement of the Grave
*Teresa of Avila Interior Castle (NF)
Tey, Josephine Daughter of Time
*Trigiani, Adriana Big Stone Gap
#Tsukiyama, Gail Dreaming Water
Tucker, Lisa Once Upon a Day
#Tucker, Lisa Song Reader (4.5*)
*Unsworth, Barry Sacred Hunger
*Urrea, Luis Alberto The Hummingbird's Daughter
#Ursu, Anne Spilling Clarence (4.5*)
Vangen-Ratcliffe, Sheri Heir Apparent (4.5* Mystery)
Vida, Vendela And Now You Can Go
@Vreeland, Susan The Forest Lover
#Weber, Katharine The Music Lesson (4*), Triangle (4.5*)
#Wicomb, Zoe Playing in the Light
Winspear, Jacqueline Maise Dobbs mystery series
@Maisie Dobbs
Birds of a Feather
@Pardonable Lies
Messenger of Truth
Yevtushenko, Yevgeny Wild Berries
#Zackheim, Victoria The Bone Weaver (4*)
#Zafon, Carlos Rulz The Shadow of the Wind
#Zusak, Markus The Book Thief (5*YA)

Friday, July 28, 2006

Leave Me Alone I'm Reading

Finding and Losing Myself in Books by Maureen Corrigan (Read July 2006)
Myke gave me this book for no other reason than he thought I would enjoy it. Isn't that sweet. And I did enjoy it. Corrigan is an avid reader and the book is mostly biographical - dealing with how books helped her make connections with thought and experience throughout her life, as in this quote: ". . . sometimes even a few good sentences contained in an otherwise unexceptional book can crystallize vague feelings, fleeting phsical sensations, or, sometimes, profound epiphanies."

I adored the first chapter, 'Ain't No Mountain High Enough: Womane's Extreme-Adventure Books'. As a college literature teacher, Corrigan brought back to memory two of my favorite books: Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre. One of my favorite quotes comes at the end of this chapeter. Corrigan is talking about the extreme adventure of her grandmother who got on a boat alone, left her mother, an unspecified number of brothers, and one sister and sailed to America. "She was one of the hundreds of thousands of immigrant women, from the end of the last century to the present, who began working the instant they arrived in this country and, thus, never learned how to read. The distance that stretches between the world she knew and mine - filled with books - is so vast that to me it's like Grandma Helen's first glimpse of the New York skyline. Incomprehensible."

I liked her praise for mysteries. She says that it was in mystery/crime books that she discovered the work ethic in literature. I will be adding Dashiell Hammett's Maltese Falcon to my 'to-be-read' list.

One chapter 'Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition: What Catholic Marty Stories Taught Me About Getting to Heave - and Getting Even' provided a lot of insight into her growing up years as a Catholic. She is now married to a Jew and they have adopted a Chinese daughter.

Included at the back are 4 pages with Corrigan's book recommendations. That's exciting, but there are many that are not on my list. Dilemma: do I add them or ignore them? I rate this book 4 out of 5.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

The Full Cupboard of Life

by Alexander McCall Smith (read July 2006)
This is book 5 in the #1 Ladies Detective Agency series. There are more after it, but this is the last one I'll read. I've enjoyed the first 4 with their simple outlook on life, but book 5 left me lacking. It was boring, slow, and just plain stupid - not even the simplest mystery to solve. I rate this book a 1 out of 5, and that only out of kindness for the others in this series which were quite delightful.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

The Screwtape Letters

by C.S. Lewis (read July 2006)
After reading Cassie's wonderful review of The Screwtape Letters, I was encouraged to reread this classic. Glad I did, although I realized that I am more in the devil's clutches now than when I first read it as a 20-something year old. My desire for comfort above anything else is just what my little 'Wormwood' would be most pleased with, as in this quote: "No sort of action plases Hell so much as the easy road, the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings."

The Screwtape Letters are a series of letters written by Screwtape to his young, tempter-apprentice nephew concerning the tactics of securing a human soul for the Lord of Darkness. One tactic was to change a word such as charity for unselfishess. The subtle difference in the meanings of words can make a sizeable impact. In the case of unselfishness, the human focuses on his own acts and he takes pride in those things he does for other, keeping a running score of just how good he really is. The idea of charity is that the human focuses on the needs of others and that he is an instrument only in the work of God. There were several other examples given, watch for them as you read.

I always did a double take whenever Screwtape referred to the Enemy, who refers to God. Not a word typically used to describe Him. One favorite quote includes such a reference: "To us a human is primarily food; our aim is the absorption of its will into ours, the increase of our own area of selfhood at its expense. But the obedience, which the Enemy demands of men is quite a different thing. One must face the fact that all the talk about His love for men, and His service being perfect freedom, is not (as one would gladly believe) mere porpagada, but an appalling truth. He really does want to fill the universe with a lot of loathsome little replicas of Himself--creatures whose life, on its minature scale, will be qualitatively like His own, not because He has absorbed them but because their wills freely conform to His. We want cattle who can finally become food; He wants servants who can finally become sons. We want to suck in, He wants to give out. We are empty and would be filled; He is full and flows over. Our war aim is a world in which Our Father Below has drawn all other beings into himself; the Enemy wants a world full of beings united to Him but still distinct."

I liked this statement given in the preface.. The great secret is that one gives oneself up, the thing devils will never do. "There are only two kinds of people in the end," says Lewis, "those who say to God, 'Thy will be done,' and those to whom God says, in the end, 'Thy will be done.' "

A short, enlightning, and enjoyable read. I rate it 5 out of 5.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The Little Balloonist

by Linda Donn (read July 2006)
Sophie is a 'woman with courage' who marries the older Jean Pierre Blanchard, a balloonist, but is still in love with her childhood playmate, Andre. She attracts the interests of Napolean Bonaparte and becomes his 'official little ballonist'. The story reads like a young adult novel - quite simply simple. I enjoyed it, but didn't feel like there was a lot of depth. Several of the characters are from history: Napolean, Duguerre, Goethe and Blanchard but Sophie is ficticious. Which is weird because Blanchard did have a wife who took over flying his balloons and bringing in the paycheck just as Sophie did in the book. I enjoyed The Little Balloonist because it was entertaining, but mostly because I learned a tiny bit about these people and time period of French history. I'm only going to give this book a 3.5 rating out of a possible 5. Not a book to get too excited about, but not a waste of time either.

Sophie's marriage to Blanchard was arranged before she was even born. The night Sophie's parents received the letter saying he was coming to marry their daughter, her parents fought. There voices were soft, "but then her mother's voice grew sharp, until an unusual, harsh response from her father ended the conversation. To Sophie the sound was like fabric tearing, like something that maight be mended but would never be the same."

Something that made me chuckle: "At midnight she was asleep beneath a comforter when he walked into the bedroom and sat down on her. As Sophie stuggled out from under him, he stared. 'How am I to know you are lying in a bed if it is as flat as a crepe?' He teased. For days, on entering the room, he asked the bed quite formally if anyone was in it."

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Two Little Girls In Blue

by Mary Higgins Clark (read Jul 2006) This was one of Clark's better recent mysteries. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Twin 3-yr-olds are kidnapped and held for a ransom. There are several twists and turns in the plot that added interest. Also adding interest, is the compelling bond between twins. I recommend this book for a fast and enjoyable, cozy and lazy read. Rating: 4.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

In the Company of the Courtesan

by Sarah Dunant. I started this book a day or two before leaving on a trip. Of course, I took the book with me, but only read a paragraph or two at a time. I made it to page 100, but it's been such a disjointed read that I have lost interest. So I'm quitting it. I think next time I go on a vacation where I know I'm going to be with people most of the time, I'll take a magazine along and not a book.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Face Down Under the Wych Elm (#5 in Susana Appleton Series)

by Kathy Lynn Emerson (read June 2006)
A former mistress of Lady Appleton's late husband is charged with witchcraft and Susanna decides to help her with great peril to herself. I give this book a rating of 4. I am really enjoying this series, it's definitely a step above most cozy mysteries. Emerson writes intelligently and depicts the time period well.

2 Failed-toKeep-My-Attention Books

For the summer reading program I was going to read The Once and Future King for my adult classic selection. It read just like Disney's Sword in the Stone, which I liked okay for an animated film. I gave up after 50 pages. Last summer I read Bradley's Mists of Avalon and The Once and Future King was fluff compared to it. Next time I feel like more King Arthur, I'm going to try The Crystal Cave by Mary Stewart.

The second book I gave up on was The Harmony Silk Factory. It may have turned out okay, but I just couldn't get into it and wasn't sure I wanted to read about all the father's sins in his pursuit of riches and 'the good life'. Also, I had just finished The History of Love and I think anything might have fallen flat on it's heels. I decided to pick up a cozy mystery that I didn't expect much from and found that I enjoyed it much more than the first 60 pages of The Silk Factory.