Thursday, June 27, 2019

What Are You Reading?

It's Thursday! It's time to talk about what we're reading. But, before we do, I wanted to tell you that I raved about all of you on Tuesday. I was teaching a Readers' Advisory class to a small group of new staff members. When I give them a list of tools, I always end with my blog. And, I raved about all of you who write on Thursdays. I told them if they only read the blog on Thursday, they'll find some great suggestions for books, and the suggestions are by readers who are often talented writers as well. Kudos and thanks to all of you!

I'm reading a fun summer romance. It's called the Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren. A twin and
maid of honor at her sister's wedding, doesn't get along with the best man and brother of the groom. They don't get along at all. However, when they're the only two who do not succumb to food poisoning at the reception, they agree to go on the ten-day, all-expenses-paid, honeymoon to Maui together. It's fun, funny, and I really like the two main characters. Let's face it. For me, it's usually all about the characters. Humor is a plus.

What are you reading this week? I've already bragged about you, so it's time to share.


SandyG265 said...

Hi Lesa, I always enjoy seeing what everyone else has been reading but it doesn’t make my TBR pile get any smaller.

This week I read THE MIDDLE GROUND by Zoe Whittall. It was a very forgettable story about a woman who runs off with a criminal when she catches her husband with another woman.

BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WITCH FOR by Dawn Eastman is a light paranormal mystery.

And my favorite read of the week was an ARC of A NIGHT’S TALE by Sofie Kelly. I’ve really enjoyed all of her previous Magical Cats books and this one was no exception.

Kay said...

I'm always happy when I can participate in your weekly event, Lesa. And as Sandy says, your TBR doesn't get any smaller - ha! Reader advisory was one of my favorite tasks at the library - still is even as a volunteer. So, I'm still immersed in Betty Webb's Arizona and following Lena Jones from case to case. I'm reading #5 right now - DESERT CUT. I also listened to Dervla McTiernan's first Cormac Reilly book, THE RUIN, and loved it. Moved right along to #2, THE SCHOLAR, which is what I'm listening to now. I think if readers like Tana French's Dublin Murder Squad books, they'd like these. Set in Galway and with an excellent narrator. Hope you have a good weekend!

Jeff Meyerson said...

Let me start with the books I read this week.

James Grady, CONDOR: THE SHORT TAKES. Remember SIX DAYS OF THE CONDOR (or the Redford movie, THREE DAYS...)? These are shorter (although one is over 100 pages) stories about the aging spy. Readable but nothing exciting, to my mind.

Richard H. Minear, DR. SEUSS GOES TO WAR: THE WORLD WAR II EDITORIAL CARTOONS OF THEODOR SEUSS GEISEL. Interesting picture of Dr. Seuss's work for the short-lived New York newspaper (1940-48) PM, for which he did over 200 cartoons encouraging us to get into the war. He was particularly tough on isolationists like Charles Lindbergh. Interesting how Seuss was so strong about anti-Semitism and anti-black racism, yet had a blind spot about his own snti-Japanese racist attacks. Very interesting.

Lawrence Block, ed. AT HOME IN THE DARK. Thanks again Lesa for the ARC of this. I particularly liked the Joe R. Lansdale story.

Tony Dunbar, FAT MAN BLUES. Another in his series about New Orleans lawyer Tubby Dubonnet. Short, fast, forgettable read.

I'm currently - stupidly? - over 100 pages into two different books, Mark Greaney's ON TARGET, the second Gray Man thriller, about a former CIA assassin trying to survive a Shoot on Sight order against him; and Dan Stout's TITANSHADE, sort of a hardboiled cop/detective novel set on a world where we co-exist with various other alien species, one of whose Ambassadors is brutally murdered. Both these books are fast reads.

And then I'm reading...I've mentioned the Mollie Panter-Downes book of her Letters to the New Yorker from WWII London. Still on that. I've started the next collection of O. Henry stories (ROLLING STONES). And yesterday I got in a book a friend recommended and read the first section: John Wade's THE GOLDEN AGE OF SCIENCE FICTION: A JOURNEY INTO SPACE WITH 1950s RADIO, TV, FILMS, COMICS AND BOOKS. Wade is British so naturally this heavily illustrated book comes from that perspective.

Sharon said...

I finished THE SPIES OF SHILLING Lane by Jennifer Ryan last night. I thought it was delightful for the first half then it rather fizzled for me with all the platitudes and convoluted ending. I loved Mrs. Braithwaite as the bullying impulsive mother searching for her missing daughter during The Blitz as well as Mr. Norris, the meek landlord roped into becoming her accomplice. Too bad it fell flat for me at the end. Sometimes it works out that way.


I marvel at how so many of your contributors can read more than one book at a time and so many in a week! I

Happy Reading!

Nann said...

I return home today after the ALA Annual Conference. I went to five author panels and have five boxes of ARCs to look forward to. (And a box of quilt fabric and quilt books from the quilting friends with whom I spent yesterday afternoon.)

My inflight reading was an ARC from Midwinter, so I think it came out in May-- Searching for Sophie Lee by Jean Kwok. It was interestingly suspenseful. Now I am reading Prairie Fever by Michael Parker. I would like to like it more than I do.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Sharon, I start with one book of short stories and generally one novel. But sometimes, like now, I lose control and jump from book to book.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Oh, I see I forgot to mention one more. I got a notice from the library yesterday that the Kindle edition of Matthew Quirk's THE NIGHT AGENT came in, so I need to fit that in too.

Margie Bunting said...

DRAWING HOME was my first book by Jamie Brenner. Emma has worked the front desk at the American Hotel in Sag Harbor for years, where her father used to be a beloved bartender. She is a single parent whose adolescent daughter, Penny, is a budding artist struggling with OCD. Recently an acclaimed local artist took Penny under his wing before suddenly dying, and surprised everyone by leaving his beautiful home and all the art inside to his young protege. The artist's long-time manager and platonic companion is outraged and vows to contest the will. What ensues is an engaging story about what is most important in life and how the characters work through the roadblocks to find happiness.

In Sally Hepworth's THE MOTHER-IN-LAW, Lucy lost her mother too soon, so she is hoping to have a loving mother-daughter relationship with her mother-in-law. Not a chance! Diana is cool and distant, and hesitant to help even her biological children when they need it. But there's more to Diana than meets the eye. When she dies (early in the book), it looks like a suicide, but things don't add up. The story goes back and forth in time and involves more than one narrator, but I found it easy to follow. It is a quick read that keeps you going until the very end. I admired Hepworth's ability to make the plot interesting while using a low-key style.

THANK YOU, LESA, for recommending Matt Goldman's books! After you reviewed the third in the series, I was lucky enough to find all three on the library shelves. In GONE TO DUST, first in the series, Nils Shapiro and his buddy Ellegaard graduated together from the Minneapolis police academy, then quickly got laid off. Nils became a PI and Ellegaard went to work as a police officer for nearby upscale Edina. They're now 38 and Nils is a savvy investigator trying to forget his wealthy ex-wife, while Ellegaard is married with children and working for a police chief who is trading political favors for a possible high-level government job. When a divorced woman with secrets in her past is found dead under piles of vacuum cleaner lint, the two join forces to sift through all of the suspects, including several of the woman's own exes and some family members.

The second book in the series, BROKEN ICE, is easily as good as, if not better than, the first. Nils is shot in the arm with an arrow, which he can't help feeling is connected to the search for high-schooler Linnea. Two other murders follow quickly, as well as the discovery of another high school girl, found dead in a cave. There is more than one character to root for, including Nils' now-partner Ellegaard, an Amazonian female medical examiner with #MeToo issues, and the hilariously chatty, burly male nurse practitioner hired by Nils' ex-wife to provide him with private post-surgery care.

The author, Matt Goldman, an Emmy-winning TV writer, has an engaging, accessible style that draws the reader in immediately, excels in writing dialogue, and has created a host of unique characters. He is an expert plotter, but what I particularly enjoy is his fascinating descriptions of everyone and everything and Nils' witty asides (often unspoken). I can't wait to read the third, and I hope there will be more in this series.

Mark Baker said...

Wow! I’m honored that you’d brag about us like that.

Last night, I started RISKY BISCUITS by Mary Lee Ashford aka half of Sparkle Abbey. I’m not too far into it yet, but I’m enjoying it.

Glen Davis said...

People actually taking my reviews, such as they are seriously...Hope I can stand the pressure!

I read The Times We Had by Marion Davies; A girl goes on the stage at age 10, meets Hearst, goes to fame and fortune. I doubt a lot of the truthfulness here, but she talks a lot about Old Hollywood, which is interesting.

25 Years of Pickles. I remember when it seemed like every comic strip got a collected every year. What happened?

Supernatural Enhancements by Edgar Cantero; A lovecraftian novel with a protagonist, I rooted against.

Pacific Vortex and Night Probe by Clive Cussler; early Dirk Pitt is the best Dirk Pitt.

Charlotte said...

Lesa, the book you mentioned above sounds like it would be a fun and light reading which you need at times. Hugs ~

It is always nice to check out what others are reading on this great blog.

I am reading, just not mysteries at this time.

Lesa said...

I love your comments! You mean some of you are actually trying to shrink that TBR pile? Ha! Fat chance. I think we all enjoy discovering new books too much.

Sandy, It took me a while to get around to Sofie Kelly, but I like that series.

Kay, I want to read those Dervia McTiernan books. They're on my list. (I really do have a list.)

I liked the Joe R. Lansdale story, too, Jeff. Someday, I need to check out the series featuring Hap.

The Scent Keeper, Sharon, is on my library TBR pile at home. You'll have to let us know your opinion next week.

Nann, You now have reading for the next year.

Margie! Thank you! I'm so glad you're enjoying the Matt Goldman books. Let me know if you need a copy of the third book. I have a couple.

Of course I brag about all of you, Mark. I had meetings all day today, beginning at 8:30, so I only now had time to read your posts. But, I love Thursdays because of our book chats.

I hope you can stand the pressure and the ringing ears, Glen. I was talking about your reviews to a co-worker today.

Charlotte, It's a delightful book, and I had staff members at two other libraries say the same thing today when I did #AskaLibrarian on Twitter. Hugs, Charlotte!

Margie Bunting said...

Lesa, thank you for the offer, but Matt Goldman's The Shallows was on the new book shelf at one of my libraries--hallelujah! I hope to read it sometime in the next week or two. I'm trying to space them out a bit, because . . . then we wait!

Lesa said...

You're welcome, Margie! I'd rather you checked it out from the library, anyways. ;)

MELODY said...

Chiming in here, to echo Sharon's comments about THE SPIES OF SHILLING LANE. I listened to it and appreciated the narrator's good voice and excellent job in differentiating characters. However, the second part fell sadly flat for me. Usually the miles fly by when I am walking, listening to an audiobook. Maybe the sudden heat wave didn't help. A whole stack of Library Reserves came in at once, so I am spoiled for choice. BORROWED TIME by Tracy Clark is my next read. But Women's World Cup Games have priority.

Carol N Wong said...

Finished House Rules by Jodi Picoult a few days ago and want to do the review but my part time job of going to doctor appointments is inferring with that. I did start Lisa See's book, Peony In Love. I am regretting spending the $5.99! Disc 1 & 2 are fine but Disc is very sad. I had to pull out my de-stress coloring book of Mandalas that I received from the Cancer Center! Two more discs to go.

Also reading Mary Ellis' Abigail's New Hope. That one is a page turning tale of an Amish midwife's arrest.

Lesa said...

Well, I know I once mentioned The Spies of Shilling Lane, but two strikes, and it's out. Happy to not have it on a TBR pile.

Oh, Carol. I'm sorry about Peony in Love. At least you have another page tuner going.

katstev said...

Cliff's Edge by Meg Tilly.

Lesa said...

Her books always look good, Katstev. How is it?

Laurie Loewenstein said...

I have recently returned to a previous habit of reading a page or two of really good writing before putting my own thoughts to the page each day. For the past week I've focused and refreshed my brain with In the Skin of a Lion by Michael Ondaatje. Its beautiful composition and lyrical prose are a tonic.

Lesa said...

Laurie, I'm interested in, not only what you're reading, but how an author gets ready to write. Thank you!