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text 2018-12-05 21:24
24 Festive Tasks, Door 9 - Thanksgiving UPDATED to include Task 2
Amelia: An Autumn Bride - Hildie McQueen
To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion, 1914-1918 - Adam Hochschild
Hamilton's Battalion: A Trio of Romances - Alyssa Cole,Rose Lerner,Courtney Milan
Conspiracy of Fools: A True Story - Kurt Eichenwald
The Lotus Palace - Jeannie Lin
The Jade Temptress - Jeannie Lin
Once Upon a Spine - Kate Carlisle
Bitch Planet Volume 1 - Kelly Sue DeConnick,Robert Wilson IV,Valentine De Landro
Bitch Planet Volume 2: President Bitch - Kelly Sue DeConnick
Nightingales Under the Mistletoe: (Nightingales 7) - Donna Douglas

Thanksgiving

 

Book: Today, I read Amelia: An Autumn Bride (Brides for All Seasons #7) by Hildie McQueen (autumn colors).

 

Task #1

The three books I am most thankful for reading this year are:

 

1. To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty and Rebellion, 1914-1918 by Adam Hochschild

          This is what I would recommend to anyone, but especially non-history readers, if they wanted to read one book about World War I. 

 

2. Hamilton's Battalion: A Trio of Romances by Rose Lerner, Courtney Milan, and Alyssa Cole

              I'm not a fangirl of Hamilton or his musical (although I do listen and enjoy the soundtrack), but getting new material from these authors was enough for me to buy it. Courtney Milan's story was my favorite, but Rose Lerner's and Alyssa Cole's stories were wonderful as well. 

 

3. Conspiracy of Fools: A True Story by Kurt Eichenwald

             This book was a door stopper, but read so much like a novel that it didn't feel over long at all. This is the true story of the rise and fall of Enron.

 

Honorable mention: The Lotus Palace and The Jade Temptress (Pingkang Li Mysteries #1 and 2) by Jeannie Lin.

 

Task #2

My perfect meal, created by a chef and his/her/their team, is inspired by my Italian heritage. It would be time and resource intensive, ergo I would never make it for myself.

1. Starters - Caprese salad and friend calamari

2. Main - Zuppa di Pesce e Frutti de Mare (just a ton of seafood in a clear broth)

3. Sides - Baked Fennel with Parmesan and Mushroom risotto

4. Dessert - Tiramisu

 

Task #3

The book I read this year with the most "stuffing" was Once Upon a Spine (A Bibliophile Mystery #11) by Kate Carlisle. Details about the most mundane things with boring vanilla characters and constant wedding talk - and the murder mystery was an afterthought until the very end. 

 

Task #4

Honestly, I can't remember all the freebies I download in a single month, let alone in a year. So here is what I bought this month:

 

1. Bitch Planet Volume 1 and 2 by Kelly Sue DeConnick et al (from Foyles)

2. A Nightingale Christmas Carol and Nightingales Under the Mistletoe by Donna Douglas (from a charity shop)

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review 2018-08-04 09:53
Buried in Books (Bibliophile Mystery, #12)
Buried in Books - Kate Carlisle

I used to love this series, but at this point it's more a nostalgic fondness.  I love reading about books, book binding, and book restoration, and the characters are all just ... awesome.  Quirky, kind, strong, and the friendships and family dynamics are amazing.  There was a stupid nemesis character for awhile at the beginning, but Carlisle dumped her, an action with did nothing but improve the story lines.

 

Alas, this book centered around Brooklyn and Derek's wedding, and I don't like weddings much.  On top of this, while there is a book at the center of the mystery, there's only one scene about bookbinding/conservation and it was brief and had little to do with the plot.

 

Speaking of plot it was ... scattered.  Even with an epilogue that tied things up it never felt like the criminal solution ever came together.  Everything is answered, but there wasn't a sense of satisfaction about it.  Carlisle does get a bonus point for incorporating every bibliophile's secret fear: death by book avalanche.  

 

Buried in Books struck me as more about Brooklyn and Derek's romance than about plotting out a great murder mystery.    This is a letdown, but the characters go a long way towards staving off complete disappointment.  Hopefully if there's a next book, it'll be more focused on the dead bodies and books.

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review 2018-07-31 18:15
Once Upon a Spine
Once Upon a Spine - Kate Carlisle

Brooklyn and Derek are engaged and she still has not met her future in-laws (Derek's parents). She is nervous about their arrival, but they are ready for the week of having both parents under their roof. They go to the bookstore that has older books, the local store owned by Will Rabbit and some other places. The next morning, Brooklyn goes to Will's store to find Joey dead under a shelving unit and Will unconscious next to him. She calls 911 and Derek. Their friend and detective comes and interviews her and she gives as much information as she can. Soon after that, her parents and Derek's parents are in the house and they are taking them around and finding that they enjoy each other's company and help to solve the murder of Joey and attack on Rabbit. 

 

The story was fun and had moments that were funny. This was another book that I combined reading and listening in order to get through the book a little faster. I know that I will continue to read the series (out of order as I am able to obtain them from the library). 

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review 2018-06-09 20:36
Pages of Sin
Pages of Sin - Kate Carlisle

Good short story. Brooklyn is back in her hometown, staying with her parents and giving a program at the library to teach people simple fixes of special books. Her mother asks her to help clean out a friend's house after her death. When she is using some of the books to teach her students, they find some records that show some of the secrets of the woman who died and her family. When they are brought together and the items are brought out at the memorial the whole truth starts to come out. 

 

While not a murder mystery, it is still a cute story showing some things that people keep hidden. 

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review 2018-05-20 20:43
The Book Stops Here
The Book Stops Here - Kate Carlisle

Brooklyn complained that she was running out of work and her friend, Ian, tells her about being a specialist on "This Old Attic" that helps people learn about the things they have and how much they are worth. Her first book is an old friend to her. It Frances Hodgson's "The Secret Garden" and she values it for more than the woman thought it would be worth. Suddenly after a blurb on the local tv news, she is being hunted by some very large men who want the book. Also, the host of the show is under attack by a stalker and some of the attacks on him have put her in danger. Derick is afraid for her safety and starts trying to stay close to her. Her new friend and neighbor, Alexandra, is also afraid and teaches her some things she can do for herself to keep safe while these men are trying to get her. 

 

Fun story, there were moments that I was laughing out loud and other places where I felt that something was off, but the story did have me guessing until the end. 

 

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