Thursday, December 28, 2017

What Are You Reading?

This is the last "What Are You Reading" post for 2017. Next week, we're on to a new year, new
books, new memories. I hope we all make wonderful discoveries in 2018. And, don't forget, if you want to do a "Favorite Books Read in 2017" post, feel free to send it anytime from Dec. 31st on.

In the past week, I finished two Ben Aaronovitch Rivers of London urban fantasies. I finished the first in a new mystery series for a journal review - just so-so. I may have been reading Anne Fadiman's The Wine Lover's Daughter for a while now, but I'm over halfway through it, so the end is in sight. I've enjoyed it, but other books have distracted me. (In fact, I brought all the rest of the Rivers of London books home from the library.)

And, today, a wonderful book arrived in the mail, a gift from a dear friend. It's called Vanishing Ireland by James Fennell and Turtle Bunbury. I've only glanced through it, and read snippets here and there. But, here's part of the description from Amazon.

"Short-listed for the Eason's Irish Published Book of the Year Award 2007, Vanishing Ireland is a unique collection of portrait interviews looking at the dying ways and traditions of Irish life and taking us back to an Ireland virtually unrecognisable today. Illustrated with over a hundred evocative and stunning photographs, we meet the people and customs that shaped the cultural identity of the Irish nation. Through their own words and memories, sixty-four men and women transport us back to a time when people lived off the land and the sea, when music and storytelling were essential parts of life, when a person was defined by their trade. Divided into five parts -- Children of the Field, Children of the Music, Children of the Horse, Children of the Trade and Children of the Water -- Vanishing Ireland brings together the stories of those who lived through Ireland's formative years."

So, what are you reading this week? What are you ending the year with? We're all waiting!


Grace Koshida said...

As mentioned last week, I did change my focus to read some books set around the Christmas period:

HUMAN REMAINS by Melissa Yi features Dr. Hope Sze, a young doctor working in different areas during her residency. Her first 4 books were set in a Montreal hospital but in this book, Hope decides to spend a quiet productive month doing research at a stem cell lab in Ottawa as Christmas approaches. Hope finds the dead body of a lab colleague in the snow and that is just the start.

WHITEOUT by Ragnar Jonasson is book #5 in the Dark Iceland series and I bought it via UK's Book Depository since I could not wait for the North American publications. The story takes place 2 days before Christmas in a remote Icelandic village. Jonasson portrays the bleak, dark, cold, snowy and empty Icelandic landscape so well.

I also read a few Christmas-related short stories by some new authors:
ROSOLIO RED by Traci Andrighetti
DOUBLE DECK THE HALLS by Gretchen Archer

I hope that 2018 will bring another year of reading great books for you all!

Lesa said...

I'm right there with that 2018 wish, Grace. Discovery is so much of the pleasure. Ragnar Jonasson is the only one on your list that I've heard of. Good luck with discovery in the new year.

Grace Koshida said...

I agree with you that discovering new authors is a lot of fun, Lesa. I don't normally read a lot of short stories, but I found this was a good way to quickly try 3 new authors (on my Kindle) and stay within the Christmas theme. They were all worthy of another read of some of their full length books.

Sharon said...

I am reading Goodnight from London by Jennifer Robson. It was recommended by my daughter. I finished Ginger Snapped by Gail Oust on Tuesday and liked it very much.

I could not write an entire post about my favorite books but I will share that this year I read 73 books. My favorite overall was The Cottingley Secret by Hazel Gaynor. My favorite cozy mystery was Murder in Mayfair by D.M. Quincy. And my favorite historical fiction was Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly.

Best wishes for a Healthy Happy New Year to All!

SandyG265 said...

It’s been too cold here to feel like going out much so I managed to finish 4 mysteries this week. The first three were cozies in series that I’ve been enjoying. MISSION IMPAWSIBLE By Krista Davis, GINGER SNAPPED by Gail Oust and HONEY-BAKED HOMICIDE by Gayle Leeson.

I also read UNNATURAL CAUSES by Dawn Eastman which was a quick read but I thought it was just OK.

Right now I’m trying a new author. I just started A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS by Victoria Gilbert.

I hope everyone has a happy and healthy new year.

Jeffrey Meyerson said...

Lesa, hi. (Also Grace.)

I did make a list of about a dozen favorite reads yesterday, and will email it to you after the New Year.

I only finished a couple of new books this week - NIGHTBLIND by Ragnar Jonasson, which I found disappointing after his first one. The flashback scenes weren't interesting to me and I skimmed them. Thankfully, it was a very short book.

Much better was GUILTY MINDS by Joseph Finder, his third Nick Heller book. This time the Boston p.i. has 48 hours to unravel a plot to frame the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court for sleeping with a prostitute. Very fast read. I haven't read any of his non-series books but I will have to.

Two to choose from next are THE DRIFTER, a first novel by Nicholas Petrie that was highly recommended, and IT CAN'T HAPPEN HERE by Sinclair Lewis. And I have three on hold for the Kindle.

Grace, one I'm waiting for that fits your requirements is the Otto Penzler edited THE BIG BOOK OF CHRISTMAS MYSTERIES, 672 pages long.

I haven't read as many volumes of stories this year, but with huge collections like the Complete Saki, my total of stories read is at an all-time high, over 800.

Grace Koshida said...

Jeffrey: I did enjoy reading Nick Petrie's THE DRIFTER earlier this year. If you like Lee Child, you will probably like this series. Book #2 will be on my favourite 2017 reads list.

And thanks for the tip about the Penzler book.

Lesa said...

Sharon! So pleased to hear you liked Murder in Mayfair. It's one of my top 3 books for the year. I enjoyed Ginger Snapped, too.

Lesa said...

Sandy, I'm behind in the Krista Davis series, although I enjoy it. Just behind, that's all. I read the Victoria Gilbert as well.

Lesa said...

Jeff, That's an enormous number of short stories! I put a hold on a collection today, but I don't think it's for you (smile). It's a collection of Georgette Heyer's Regency stories.

Charlotte said...

Jeff, I like Jospeh Finder also. I need to catch up with his books.

I got three new books for Christmas.
1. Coffee with God, 365 devotions, by Sarah Arthur
2. The Dry by Jane Harper
3. Glass Houses by Louise Penny

I finished:
1. The Cold Dish by Craig Johnson
I am reading books by Craig Johnson because of Lesa. She kept encouraging me to try his books. She was right and now I am reading his books. Have to after no more TV shows about Longmire. Thanks Lesa.
2. A Treasure to Die For by Richard Houston
3: Mercy & Mayhem by Ava Mallory, didn't care for this book at all. I probably will not read anymore of her books.

I am reading a book from the library, If You Were Here by Alafair Burke
Need to get back to reading Into the Water by Paula Hawkins. For some reason I am having a hard time staying force, I am having to read it slow. Goodreads voters picked this book as number 1 for Mystery and Thriller list. I have had this book since Mother's Day from my son. He knew I wanted it.

Keep on reading those 📚📚

Glen Davis said...

Jeff, I read Otto Penzler's Christmas book, and thought it was really great!

This week I read Dixieland by Mark Cullifer, a literary story about a professional wrestling territory in the 1980's.

Enzan by John Donohue, the (possibly) last book in the Conor burke Martial Arts Thriller series.

Becoming the Wolf, about a vigilante in Cincinnati, OH.

Edge of the Pit, a Badger Thomas story that fell apart at the end.

North of Havana and Ten Thousand Island by Randy Wayne White, almost caught up with the Doc Ford series.

Sunburn by Laura Lippman, a modern noir novel.

Lesa said...

Oh, Charlotte! Glass Houses. I hope you like it. And, I'm glad you're enjoying Craig Johnson's Longmire books. Sorry about the Paula Hawkins.

Lesa said...

Glen, I always look forward to seeing your books because I don't recognize most of them. Yes, of course, Randy Wayne White. But, not the others. Thank you!

Unknown said...

I didn't get much reading done this week - very busy, but now have put Murder in Mayhem on my library list and plan to read Ben Aaronovitch early next year. I have Glass Houses but haven't started it yet. I hope things settle enough to get caught up on my reading. Thank you all for your reviews.

Lesa said...

I hope you have the chance to get caught up on your reading! Thank you for continuing to read the blog!