Welcome to Marjay's reading blog.

Obsession

How many people find a great author and need to read every book you can by that author?  

As I am sure many of you noticed I do tend to read everything some of my favorite authors publish.  Right now I am reading everything I can find by Piper Davenport. Another name to add to my increasing list of must reads when new books come out.  Not really a surprise since she writes in my guilty pleasures category - hot alpha male bikers.  

I know my bestie is like me.  Once she finds a new author, she wants to find all the books and read them. We often share names and authors back and forth.  I am sure our families wonder if we are having a long distance book club or just chatting about various books.  

This weekend when I had lunch with another friend, we again started speaking about books.  She follows some of the same authors as me and we found ourselves talking about how much we enjoy watching characters grow and develop over the life of the series.  She spoke about how Louise Penny’s major character, Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, changed over time.  It reminded me how much Eve Dallas and Roarke have grown since the inception of J.D. Robb’s In Death series.  

There are new reviews but they are on my most recent obsession.  Luckily for those who do not share my obsession, Elise Cooper has sent in a wonderful review of a cosy mystery called Bookmarked For Murder by V. M. Burns and an interview with Marc Cameron with his new book, Active Measures.  Both of which I think you will find quite interesting… I did.

 

Happy Reading this week!!!

Books read this week

A Fairbanks Affair by Katy Regnery

The Bridal Suite by Rochelle Alers

Road to Desire by Piper Davenport

Road to Redemption by Piper Davenport

Road to Absolution by Piper Davenport

Road to Passion by Piper Davenport

Road to Victory by Piper Davenport

Road to Peace by Piper Davenport (not reviewed yet)

Road to Victory by Piper Davenport (not reviewed yet)

Ryder by Piper Davenport (not reviewed yet)

 

SNOW DAY

I may be calling it too soon, but SNOW DAY!  I am sure with all the snow that is coming, it will happen.  They are saying in our area we will get about 14 inches. We will see.  Right now there are over 500 delays and cancellations.

The excitement for a teacher and a snow day is a mixed blessing.  It gives us a chance to sleep later, but the day will have to be made up.  The school I work at now wants us to either come in, if we can safely, or to work on at home on Professional Development.  SIGH… but I can do it in my PJs - so that is a win. I can watch the podcasts I am behind, work on the book I want to read for work about adding some behavioral elements for kids on the spectrum.  That stuff will need to be done around shoveling and dishes (I am determined to catch up!). There will be lots of shoveling to accomplish.  

OH School was just closed.  There is an excitement in the air and the knowledge that the coffee will taste even better!  SORRY - had to go do the first of many shovelings adventures. I love the idea of working from home tomorrow.  Sometimes I am sorry I cannot work from home, but in my profession - it is not possible. Meanwhile, I will enjoy tomorrow (and will read some good stuff too).

Elise Cooper has sent us an author interview along the same lines as last week.  This week, Joseph Kanon with his new book The Apprentice is highlighted. The story is both a moral thriller about chasing a Nazi who was never punished, but using his family to do that.  

Books read this week:

Rocky Mountain Cowboy Christmas by Katie Ruggles

Turn the Tide by Katie Ruggles

Earl of Wainthorpe by Collette Cameron

Southern Harm by Caroline Fardig

 

Gratitude

A student wrote a gratitude note this week to books.  The note explained how books gave her a better understanding of the world and herself.  They allowed her to see the world through someone else’s eyes and mind. Her words of gratitude went straight to my heart.  The clarity of her thoughts that echo mine are welcome. It means we have done our job as teachers to help her learn to read, understand and think critically on her own.  More importantly it means we have raised a person who is able to be a lifelong learner, capable of growth and understanding of our future. It gives me such hope to know she is going to be part of the future.  

Books have brought me so many places that I will never go in my real life.  I have danced at fancy balls, laughed at masquerades, ridden free and wild on a motorcycle, found my true love or at least lots of book boyfriends.  It has freed me from my daily grind and given me hope in times of sadness. Books have allowed me to laugh and cry. Mostly they have helped me to learn about people and gain understanding.  I too am grateful for books and the stories they contain.  

I hope each of you time to ponder what you are grateful for this coming holiday, in between the turkey and the pies.  

Speaking of gratitude, I am very grateful for Elise Cooper and her interviews.  She seems to find some of the best authors and books. I love how she adds to my blog.  Thank you Elise.

Books read this week

The Earl of Darby by Audrey Wynne

Restless Hearts by BJ Daniels

An Unexpected Gift by Kate Pearce

The Rancher’s Redemption by kate Pearce

Something Just Like This by Jennifer Probst

 

Book Obsession

Who else does this happen to?  You find a book by a new author and immediately put everything else off until you find and read every book in the series and/or prequels.  It is an obsession for sure. Some people call it Bibliomania, but I do not think it is fair as I am not obsessively collecting random books.  Even though my kindle is getting full, full, full. But obsessed I have been and I am sure will be again.  

This week consisted of bikers, biker babes and more bikers.  I found a new author Piper Davenport. She has written many books, but I stumbled across her reading the Primal Howl, the first book in a series called Primal Howl MC.  As soon as that book was finished, I went looking for more and found the second book Primal Need only to be stymied after that as there are no more books published in the series.  BUT I found another series out in Kindle called Dogs of Fire: Savannah Chapter. Yes, I downloaded and read all of them available! Now I am at a stopping point again. Her series Dogs of Fire comes out in December on Kindle.  SIGH….  

Bustle had an article about the 9 Stages of Being Obsessed with a Romance Novel Series back in 2016 which absolutely describes how I felt about finding and reading this series.  Huffpost has a list of 22 Signs That a Book is Taking Over Your Life. Even Enews has a whole article about The Stages of Becoming Obsessed with a New Book. I think my favorite article that I found was The 13 Things That Happen When You Are Obsessed With Reading.  That article made me laugh, especially with the fourth item ...you don’t know what to do with yourself when your book ends. That is exactly how I am feeling today… I have more books that need reading, but I can not seem to settle on a book. I have pasted the links below for your entertainment.

Meanwhile, I have school work to do and all the normal stuff...dishes, laundry, cleaning, but not for today.  Today after I finish this post, I am going to sit and pout a bit over being stuck in my reading. Then I am going to pull on my big girl boots and read the books I have to read on my to read list.

Elise Cooper has sent in a great interview with Joseph Kanon and his book, The Accomplice that you will want to check out!  Have a great week reading! If you live up here - drive carefully tomorrow!

Books read this week:

Primal Howl and Primal Need by Piper Davenport

Saving the Preacher’s Daughter, Stealing the Biker’s Heart, Redeeming the Biker’s Past, Quieting the Biker’s Rage and Keeping the Biker’s Oath by Piper Davenport

Biker Babe by Audrey Carlan

A Lady’s Past by A S Fenichel

 

Articles about being obsessed with reading a series remarked upon in the blog:

(https://www.bustle.com/articles/168744-9-stages-of-being-obsessed-with-a-romance-novel-series

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/22-signs-a-book-is-taking_n_5901508

https://thoughtcatalog.com/kelly-bishop/2015/06/13-things-that-happen-when-youre-obsessed-with-reading/

https://www.eonline.com/news/529646/the-8-stages-of-becoming-obsessed-with-a-new-book

 

I Feel Lucky

I have made my goal for Goodreads.  According to their counting of my read books, I have read 205 books to date.  While I feel that is a remarkable goal, I am sure other people have estimated and made other goals. I feel I am lucky I had parents who raised me to be a reader.  I feel lucky to have the time to read. 

 

I feel I am a lucky person in that I work near a fabulous community library.  So many of my books come from there. I can not emphasis the need in these times for funding for libraries.  Library that have books, ebooks, movies, and so many activities. Mostly safe places for people to explore, read and to be.   Some of our readers do not have that luxury and that is a huge concern for many. How do we continue to allow people chances to learn and explore different ideas?  How do we give everyone equal access to jobs, information, and learning opportunities? A robust library with programs for all ages is a necessity in this world with the disparity in resources.  

 

I feel lucky because teaching reading is part of my job.  The kids and I often find cool books. Right now we are in the midst of a WWII reading unit. We started with George Takei book, They Called Us Enemy, a graphic novel about the citizens of Japanese ancestry incarcerated during WWII.  This week check out the new WWII book - The Boys Who Challenged Hitler. WOW, that is all I have to say! In the next couple of weeks, more books like this one will show up. The boys (yes, it is a group of all boys) are fascinated by the guns and tanks of WWII.  I am so taking advantage of their interests to get them reading /listening to books that tell stories about young adults during that time.   

 

Elise Cooper has sent in a fabulous interview with Christina Dodd.  She writes fabulous books - thrillers with twists and turns that are fun to read.  The book is the last book in the Cape Charade series. Elise has said the book is a book full of suspense and tension. I feel lucky that she is a part of my life and blog.

 

I feel very lucky to have all of you…  now if I could sing like Mary Chapin Carpenter and win the lottery…  Have a great week!

 

Books read this week.

The Princess Plan by Julia London

Duke’s Actually by Erica Ridley

The Duke’s Bride by Erica Ridley

The Boys Who Challenged Hitler: Knud Pedersen and the Churchill Club by Phillip Hoose

Bullet by Daphne Loveling

Angel in a Devil’s Arms by Julie Anne Long

Twist of Fate by Jill Shalvis

 

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The Four Letter Word of the Season

The forecast for later this week calls for a four letter word… I know it is time for the cold, white stuff to start showing up. I know many of my friends are excited by this prospect, even if is just a 40% chance and just showers.  Can you tell, I am not excited. I am fully cognizant that in order to have the beautiful seasons of spring, summer, and fall here, we must have winter and the four letter word! I spent time today switching over my clothes. The summer clothes are switched out for winter: Short sleeves into long sleeves and shorts in pants.  Fleece vests and heavy socks. I even broke down and put a blanket on the bed with the quilt. The best part of the upcoming season - is the time for reading that will come! I am excited for that.

I was able to finish up my list of Christmas books this week and start on others.  I loved reading the newest Susan Mallery’s book about happily inc. My favorite reading though this week was two ARC books that were sent to me by their authors.  Katy Regnery has started writing a new contemporary romantic series about people finding each other off the Odds-Are-Good publication. Rome-0 seeks Juliet is about a couple who find each other over mushers and dog racing. . I have to tell you the story was one of her best. . And the couple was HOT.  The second ARC I read was by Chris Keniston. Her series, Hart Land series is a contemporary romantic series as well. In this case, we are focused on the 9 granddaughters of the General. Rose is about the granddaughter Rose and finding her match. She actually hooked him while learning to cast with her grandfather. That scene was quite funny.   I feel quite honored that both of them sent me their books to review (so check them out http://marjay.simplesite.com/443139526).

Elise Cooper reviewed a cozy mystery called Santa Paws.  The interview shows the fun aspects of the novel as well as how the author added information about the world of dogs.  The other characters seem to add to the novel interest and fun to the novel. I hope you take a moment and read the review (http://marjay.simplesite.com/239538810).  

Hopefully on Friday, the four letter word weather occurence will miss us!  Meanwhile have a great week reading!

Books Read this week:

Meant to be Yours by Susan Mallery

The Highlander’s Christmas Bride by Vanessa Kelly

The Seduction of Lady Phoebe by Ella Quinn

Nome-o Seeks Juliet by Katy Regnery

Rose by Chris Keniston

 

It's too early for Christmas

It’s too early for speaking of Christmas!  Here the leaves are the colors from a box of crayons like mahogany, burgundy, pumpkin and burnt sienna.  However, in the publishing industry Christmas romances have been coming out. So I have been reading Christmas romances since the middle of September.  All those lovely romances with the spirit of Christmas. What a fabulous crop of novels!! 

Everyone knows I love a good romance, but make it a romance that takes place at Christmas and I am in garland heaven!  There is just something about a romance that happens around that holiday. There is all the glitter and candles, ornaments and special foods, family and friends that makes it special, but then when you add in a romance, it is just all mistletoe and holly for me.   

Perhaps it is that Christmas is a holiday of magic and possibility, making romance all the more sparkling and special.  Perhaps the romance, makes all the lights brighter and the spirit of giving and hope stronger. I know it is waaaay toooooo early for the list, but this gives you plenty of time to find and buy them for someone’s stocking OR perhaps for you to read during the month… either way, the list is below

Contemporary Romance

Let it Snow

Low Country Christmasn

Coming Home for Christmas

Christmas in Harmony Harbor

Cowboy Christmas Redemption

Wrapped Up in You

TIde and Punishment

 

Historical Romance

The Taming of Lord Scrooge

The Merry Viscount

Lady Sophia’s Christmas Wish

Seduction on a Snowy Night

 

Children’s Read Aloud

The Worst Christmas Ever

Luckily, Elise is balancing off my early Christmas spirit with an interview with Charles Todd and his newest book, A Cruel Deception.  It is a mystery set during the time around the Armistice at the end of WWI. The story weaves in the abuse of laudanum, the use of pigeons, and the Angel of Mons.  An interesting side note to add is that Charles Todd is a mother and son writing team!

 

I wish you good reading!  

Until next week….

 

Three Confessions

Three Confessions

Every Sunday morning, I get excited to write to all of the readers again.  Sometimes I have saved up a topic that I am passionate about. Other times, I like to review some of the great books I have read or some new author.  This week I have confessions to make.  

 

Confession number one:  I tried to listen to an audio book this week and found myself confused about what was happening. Perhaps I might have (just maybe) forgot it was on.  There is nothing like a reminder that it is hard to maintain concentration to listen to an audiobook for me! I have a couple of friends who swear by them.  They even have favorite people who read the book. I guess I am on a pretty steep learning curve for audiobooks.  

 

Confession number two:  I have only eleven more books to read to meet my reading goal.  So, why is this a confession? It means I have obviously not done other things that needed to be done and read instead.  Not that I am complaining, but my house, if it could talk, might complain a bit.  

 

Confession number three:  I have struggled with motivation this fall.  Especially with all the activities that happen in the fall out here.  I had the Highland Games and Fall Foliage Festival happening. Getting ready for them takes lots of time.  It is not motivation about reading and writing about books, but motivation to accomplish the tasks that are not about the reading blog….  Yup, I would prefer to read than almost anything else.  

 

Elise Cooper has an interview with Nelson and Alex DeMille!  It is a must read interview and quite interesting! Next week I will have a list of Christmas themed romance reads.  I will even put together a special page of all the books - so stay tuned.  

 

Meanwhile - enjoy reading.  Thank you to all of the readers.  You are appreciated…  

 

Books reviewed this week:

Fast Lane by Kristen Ashley

Coming Home for Christmas by RaeAnne Thayne

The Escape of Robert Smalls by Jehan Jones-Radgowski

Low Country Dreams by Lee Tobin McClain

Low Country Christmas by Lee Tobin McClain

Seven Letters by J P Monninger

 

The Festival in Town

What a Weekend!  It was Fall Foliage Weekend in our town and what a weekend it was.  There were so many “leaf peeper” and people from outside our town and state!  The craft fair portion was interesting (even with me being a contributor). I did not get a chance to get up and watch any of the competitions, but I heard from others - they were good.  I love the looks on people’s faces when they see various things. I must say with all humility - that I enjoyed the positive comments thrown my way.

 

A few takeaways from the weekend:

Maple Candy is wicked awesome!  

Watching people work on a hand lathe forming furniture was fascinating.

The book sale at the library and the historical society were quite well attended and I saw lots of books going home with people.  One of my favorite sights was a baby stroller filled with books while the baby was being carried!

When people say, “Are you sure?” after you give them a price, they are expecting a discount - JUST FOR THEM.  

There are people who do not understand that the foliage in the fall is all around us, not just in specific places for photo ops.

Yes, I make the crafts I sell, honestly.  There is no craft fairy who leaves completed pieces behind. Garden Whimsies (see picture attached) 

 

I have to admit, the people watching was much more interesting than any book I could ever read!  I loved watching their mannerisms, their laughter and joy, and the love of the day. The number of dogs brought to the festival surprised me tremendously, mostly for the lack of barking and noise.  This afternoon when the sun was out with the blue sky and the parade of bands and floats and firetrucks was a perfect day.

 

Books read this week

Single in Sitka by Katy Regnery

They Called Us Enemy by George Takei

Vendetta in Death by JD Robb

 

Fall Foliage

I did read some great books this week AND I might be almost caught up with my TBR list - NOT. Okay, so it is getting longer!  Red Sox Baseball has ended for the season and I had all these plans for reading madly all these books. Yup - That didn’t happen.  Instead I have spent a lot of time getting ready for our Fall Foliage Festival here in my small town. It is next weekend and then I can really take a deep breath.  

According to the Visit NH website, we will be at peak foliage in the next week or so.  Right now there are some beautiful spots with some bright trees in their fall glory mixed with all the greens of summer.  The dichotomy between the colors and the greens always amaze me. How can two trees, the same species near each other change so differently?  The glory of the colors of nature is something to see. I saw lots of out of state cars in town today on their way to “leaf peep”.  

I did have some time to read!  

  • A great Middle School read called The Tornado by Jake Burt was excellent and will probably show up on some of my student’s reading lists. The lesson of how to deal with bullies without being overbearing was well done!   

  • Tide and Punishment by Bree Baker was a great cosy mystery about Everly with her Iced Tea shop in the town of Charm, North Carolina. She seems to have a penchant for finding and investigating murders.  The fact the murderer keeps threatening her is not a major stopping point for her. Her love interest is the local detective, who does have to keep her safe and investigate the murder.  

  • The Shape of the Night by Tess Gerritsen was a wonderfully creepy mystery with lots of interesting small town characters and lots of unexplained happenings.  

  • Last and not least was Single in Sitka by Katy Regnery, a wonderful romance with lots of charm, but since it comes out on Tuesday - you will have to wait for that review!

Once again, Elise Cooper has a fabulous interview with Kyle Mills and the new Vince Flynn’s Lethal Agent by Kyle Mills.  This book is right up some of your alleys with bioterrorism, a presidential election and lots of twists and turns to keep you in your seat!

G’mar Hatima Tova for my friends who celebrate  Yom Kippur. Happy Harvest Days and Fall Foliage for people in New England.  

 

Wishing you a week of good reading!

Books read this week.

The Tornado by Jake Burt

Tide and Punishment by Bree Baker

The Shape of the Night by Tess Gerritsen

Single in Sitka by Katy Regnery

 

Obstacles to reading

I love to read.  I know that is not a surprise to most of you.  There are times where I feel like life conspires to prevent me from reading.  Ordinary things like dishes, vacuuming, laundry interfere with reading, never mind grocery shopping, cooking and even work.  I sometimes wish there was an 8th day each week to devote toward a passion, like reading for me.

Recently I read that it is important to always include things that are important to you; things you feel passionate about.  Life can become more satisfying and people become happier, when there is time that you can devote to something that makes you feel passionate. It is important to find time everyday, even if you stay up later or start your day earlier.  

This is not a new or novel thought of me, but something I ran across on Lifehacks. I also found another article about three Stamford Researchers who have shown in research that following your passion may make people less successful.  Furthermore, people who follow their passion sometimes think that it will make life easier, when in reality it is not necessarily accurate.

I love my job and I don’t intend to give it up.  I am realistic that my blog might be my passion, but it is not how I am going to earn a living.  Although I do get lots of free books, which makes me very happy, it is not going to pay the rent or feed the fur babies. I might secretly desire not getting up in the morning, but I wake up early even on weekends.  I may stay up late reading, but know I will pay for it in the morning. SIGH

So it sounds like we need an 8th day of the week, so I can read.  I am just not sure where to order one from or who to ask. Perhaps one of you knows?  

Meanwhile, Elise Cooper has sent in another great interview. This week she interviewed Lynn H Blackburn about her new book One Final Breath.  What an interesting sounding book!

I was in a historical reading romance binge and many were about the Christmas season.  What great books will be available!

 

Books Read This Week

The Merry Viscount by Sally MacKenzie

London’s Late Night Scandal by Annabelle Bryant

Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish by Grace Burrowes

Seduction on a Snowy Night by Madeline Hunter, Sabrina Jeffries, and Mary Jo Putney  

Cowboy Christmas Redemption by Maisey Yates

Primal Howl by Piper Davenport

 

The Highland Games

The Highland Games Weekend is always a fun time.  The long weekend is spent further north in New Hampshire at Loon Mountain (a ski resort).  Once a year, the hills become alive with the sounds of bagpipes. There are hundreds of pipers and drummers.  There are dancers and drum majors as well. Watching all the musicians together is one of the more special times.  

Being gone for so many days and spending time with people I love does cut into my reading time. There was time to talk and laugh, share stories and catching up, but not so much time for reading.  At the games, there were so many things to see, all the competitors, and the people. The people watching was prime! I ran into friends from high school, spoke with ‘The Buchanan’ (the laird of the Buchanan clan), watched various pipers and drum majors.  This afternoon, I watched both the amateur and professional athletes. And YES, they do wear something under their kilts. Reading was put on the backburner for sure.

Elise Cooper interviewed Sean Parnell about his newest book, All Out War.  The book sounds like it is a thriller that keeps you guessing. I have lots of reading to do to catch up from my time away.  Until next week.  

 

Books Read This week:

Wrapped Up in You by Jill Shalvis

Say It Again by Catherine Bybee

Seduction on a Snowy Night by Mary Jo Putney, Madeline Hunter and Sabrina Jefferies

 

Time of the Sunflowers

Today is a beautiful day in New England with sunny skies a tremendous color of blue.  Fair temperatures with late summer flowers blooming and the sounds of cicadas. There are butterflies and grasshoppers entertaining the cats outside with limited success (like none).  It is a fabulous day.  

However, I am feeling like I am mourning a dear friend. Dorothea Benton Frank died recently.  One of my favorite authors with her yearly lowland books. She wrote about living life fully. Her books made me fall in love with the long summer days as she wrote about them.  I found her books around 2010 and have enjoyed her writing style. Luckily, I realized I have not read all of them, so I can still look forward to reading her novels, but knowing that there are no more to come is saddening.  I guess it is a reality that I need to face, authors grow older just as we do.  

This week was an interesting one for reading.  The psychological thriller of 29 seconds held me in its grasp.  I felt such anxiety reading this novel and found my emotions all over the place with the novel.  I actually stopped reading the book at one point and read a romance before going back and finishing the novel.  Another exceptional read was This Tender Land. An epic journey both physically and mentally by four children in a canoe looking for home and love.  The book really highlights the hordes of homeless during the Depression and the conditions of depravation without harping on it. Odie, the narrator, while unreliable at his young age makes the story even more heartwarming.   I also read two historical romances that were excellent. Anna Bradley and Mary Balogh are good writers whose characters are interesting and rarely simpering.   

Next weekend, I will be at the New Hampshire Highland Games at Loon Mountain in Lincoln, NH.  There will be loads of men in kilts with bagpipes and then the strong men throwing cabers. (Yes, I realize I am totally sexist about this and I am not even slightly ashamed.) My blog will be up, but it might be later than usual.  

I wish you the joy of the fall with crisp mornings and warm days.  Leaves are changing, fall vegetables are coming in, sunflowers are blooming and the hours of sunlight are even more precious.  

Until next week, my friends.

 

Elise Cooper interviewed John Marrs and his newest book, the Passengers

Books read this week: 

29 Seconds by T M Logan

Someone to Honor by Mary Balogh

This Tender Land by William Kent Krueger

To Wed with a Wild Scot by Anna Bradley

 

Fresh Vegetables and Labor Day

This long weekend, is dedicated to the people who work.  Labor Day is “a public holiday or day of festivities held in honor of working people”. For me, it is the demarcation between summer and fall.  The growing season is short here, but the lovely winter squashes are soon to be available. I love buying food at the local farmer’s market (Warner Area Farmer’s Market) and at a local farmstand (Musterfield Farm).  The picture is this week’s haul. I have been so grateful for the fresh food knowing that the time for this is limited. I am really grateful for all the farmers and recognize how hard they work.  

This week was the first week with students, so finding time for reading has been difficult.  I did find time for some romance novels. I also have to admit I am even late writing the blog today, because I wanted to finish a wonderful mystery called The Long Call by Ann Cleeves.  The book slowly built up to the conclusion and the characters were so well drawn that I really needed to finish it, before starting on this. BUT I got interrupted, so you will have to wait for next week for the review.  The Long Call by Ann Cleeves comes out on Tuesday. 

The days are getting shorter and cooler and life continues to move on, ever so much more quickly than when I was younger.  I used to think summer was soooooo long and know I think: What it’s done? Are you sure? LOL It is amazing how long a minute can be, but how short a month can be.

Elise Cooper has a great interview with one of our favorite authors, Linda Castillo.  The interview covers her newest book, Shamed. It is a great interview and the book was awesome. (Yes, I have already read it) Enjoy.

I hope that you enjoy your laborless day and those of you in the path of Dorian stay safe.  Thank you for reading!!!

 

Books read this month:

Once a Spy by Mary Jo Putney

Total Control by Laura Griffin
How to Cross a Marquess by Jane Ashford

The Marquis She Has Been Waiting For by Ella Quinn

 

Currently Reading 

The Long Call by Ann Cleeves

 

A LOT of work

Running a book blog is a lot of work.  More than I had ever anticipated! It is the amount of time I spend managing the account, that I did not expect. I spend at least three or four hours getting information up on the pages, which I expected, but what I did not plan on was the amount of time on other tasks.  

Finding new books or keeping up with authors I like and read was a task that I didn’t expect being a time eater.  I was surprised at how long I can spend checking out books to read. It sometimes eats hours of time! I mean hours.  It is like a vortex or a black hole. Fictfact was a huge help, but it is no longer a working site. Goodreads used to be a useful site as well, but lately they have changed their set up, so I am not always aware of what is newly published vs what is coming out in a different edition. I am now more cognizant of that, but in the beginning of the change, it was a problem.  Net Galley is always helpful, because the books on that site are supposedly new and to be published. At least Amazon stops me from buying a book I already own. 

The other task that I was not expecting (but should have) is the hours it takes to check, double check and organize the lists of books.  I have a list (sometimes growing) of when the books need to be read. I often need to check and recheck the dates. Another unexpected part is that the time I spend making sure the books are loaded on the kindle and in the correct organizational section, so I can find them when I have time to read. The additional time was not expected.

Despite all the time spent but not expected, the book blog is a dream come true. I am grateful to all of you for reading and checking in!  I have been offered preview novels to share with my readers, but I am not sure I am ready for that step as of yet. (Yup - still more hours!) I have loved having Elise join the blog. Her interviews and reviews are awesome!  If any of you readers want to send in a review, I would love to include it.

Interview this week by Elise Cooper: Old Bones by Doug Preston and Lincoln Child 

Books read this week:

Build by Gillian Archer

Fast by Gillian Archer

The Long Call by Ann Cleeves

Currently reading:  Someone to Honor by Mary Balough

 

Back to School

The first week back to work is always sooo busy.  There never seems to be enough time to get everything done and planned before the students come.   I have a rough idea of the first lessons, but I haven’t really had a chance to plan it out as much as I would like.  The real problem is the amount of time it cuts into my reading. Such is the problem with having to work… 

I shouldn’t complain as today my co-contributor is packed and moving a distance away to a new home.  I do not envy her the work they have put it and the work to come! Good luck Elise. What kills me is she still found time to send in an interview with Joshilyn Jackson about her new book, Never Have I Ever.  Please read the interview - the book sounds wonderfully creepy.  

One of my favorite historical writers, Ashley York is madly working on her newest novel, Daughter of the Overking. This series of novels called The Warrior Kings are about the 11th century in Ireland and the struggle to live day by day while weaving in love stories that make you wait in the mist for your own warrior to come.  Meanwhile her first book in the series Curse of the Healer by Ashley York is on sale this week for 99 cents. It is a great read.

I have managed to read three romances this week, Iron Will, Never Have I Ever With a Duke and Wrapped in Ink.  I am presently working on another one, How to Cross a Marquess. Each a love story, but so different, one with the ton and not wanting to marry, one with a murder mystery, and one with a life long illness, Lupus, falling in love but not expecting anyone to stay with someone like her.  All three were lovely reads, short and hot. Just what I needed when I have been so busy.  

I love the coolness that has been around this weekend.  The days have been bright and sunny, but just a bit cooler than what has been.  I know this will change so I am loving what is ... right now! 

As always, thank you for reading.  Please check out the reviews and interviews. Leave notes or send a message!  Thanks to all of you as my numbers continue to climb!  

 

Books read this week:

Iron Will by PJ Daniels (No review up yet.)

Never Have I Ever With a Duke by Darcy Burke

Wrapped in Ink by Carrie Ann Ryan

 

Around the Globe

Sometimes it takes a small sliver of glass in your foot for you to realize how much you could’ve, would’ve or should’ve been doing.  Today was one such day. I have so much to do and I have used the day as a lazy away day. The last day of true vacation, while tomorrow starts again in the real world.  The past couple of weeks, I have put up a picture of beauty daily on Facebook to remind me of each day and the good in it. I have enjoyed having pictures that show where I have been or what I have done each day. It has allowed me time to reflect on the warmth and sunshine before winter comes.   

This week (as last week), I was a reading fool!  I loved being up late at night reading to only get up the next morning to read more.  I have read so many different types of romance and thriller novels. I have gone to so many places from an island in Maine with The Missing Ones to the Alps in France with The Lake of Learning.  I have danced in balls, ridden motorcycles and been protected with dangerous men. I have laughed and loved with Mo, Lock, Bridger, and Rookie. I have seen more of WWII with all the people who worked to keep people safe. I have helped solve mysteries and been surprised by how some of the mysteries ended.  Perhaps hanging at the lake nearby was not a vacation by many people’s standards, but it allowed me to go places. And I got ice cream!

 

Books read this week:

The Lake of Learning by Steve Berry and MJ Rose

Lock and Key by Cat Porter

Quiet Man by Kristen Ashley

The Yankee Widow by Linda Lael Miller

How to Love a Duke in Ten Days by Kerrigan Byrne

The Missing Ones by Edwin Hill

A Hand for the Duke by Meredith Bond

 

At The Lake

What a lovely long weekend!  I got to spend quality time with some people I love!  We spent time at my favorite lake and let me tell you - it was not a breeze like the weatherman said.  It was a gale force wind that sent us running for blankets and towels to wrap up in! And that was when the sun was out!  However, over at the campground there was less of a breeze, so we spent time there. Even the most intrepid of us did not want to get wet.  It was too cold even for him. I loved spending time hanging around with them. Throw in ice cream and fried haddock and I am a gonner.

As I get older I have noticed that I might be getting kind of set in my way at times. (Anne - don’t laugh that hard.)  I found myself trying not to cringe at the way people were treating their paperback novels with dog earred pages and putting them down on the damp sand.  Never mind the seriously creased spines and the rolled back pages. Even now thinking about it gives me the shivers. Perhaps, it is because I read so many library books and they need to stay in great shape.  Anyway - I survived the calmanity without needing oxygen.

Elise Cooper has sent in both a book review (Iris Johansen’s new book Smoke Screen) and an author interview with Maisey Yates.  Both the books Maisey speaks about I have read and reviewed. The interview explains the characters and where the series are going.  Another Great Interview!

Tomorrow is supposed to be hot and sunny, but alas, I must work.  Such is the way it goes. My sister complained how hot she has been, so we have blamed her for the cooler temperatures this weekend.  It is a slightly easier explanation about why I am wearing my slippers in August. Now she is gone, maybe it will be warmer. I wish you all a wonderful week with lots of reading and laughter!



Book read this week:

Claws of Action by Linda Reilly

First Earl I See Tonight by Anna Bennett

Things You Save in a Fire by Katherine Center.  

Just His Luck by BJ Daniels 

A Fire Sparkling by Julianne MacLean 

Hyacinth by Chris Keniston

Devlin by Barbara Freethy 

Jason by Julia London

 

A New Job for Me - Fact Checker

What an absolutely beautiful day!  I hope everyone had a wonderful day and a chance to connect with the outdoors, family and friends.  I had a great day, though if you saw my face right now, you would recognize that I forgot sunscreen for my face.  JUSSSSTTTT a bit red. Not so red that I won’t be back at the lake tomorrow - with a hat and sunscreen.

Here the farmer’s markets and road-side stands are doing a banner business.  I love being able to eat the fresh veggies that have been picked recently. At the farmer’s market, I was able to buy some homemade bread and jelly - so yummy! I continue to be in awe of the bounty available.  It is so easy to eat local this season.   

I have a new pet peeve.  I know you all are just waiting to hear what my first world problem could actually be…  Well, it really, really bothers me when either the book blurb and/or the book cover do not match the story.  One of my favorite authors is Dorothea Benton Frank. Her newest book called Queen Bee does not contain an accurate blurb.  There were two other books I saw recently that also had blurb errors including an incorrect main character’s name. Now as I understand the publishing business, there are several steps between sharing a blurb and getting the novel into the reader’s hands.  I understand that there are revisions and changes that happen at all steps, but if the blurb is what people read in order to entice them to read the book, then they should be accurate. The other part of this pet peeve is having a cover that matches the story.  In a book I read this week, there was a cover of a man pouring poison in a woman’s drink...didn’t happen in the book. In one I read last month, the main character was a ginger and did not have a dog, but on the cover he had dark hair and a dog. Maybe that could be a new job for me. A checker of blurbs and covers for factual representations - like a junior, junior editor for certain authors or publishers.  

Elise Cooper has interviewed Leila Meacham about her new mystery from WWII about which spies in occupied Paris survived called Dragonfly.  The reviews this week should interest many. There are three distinctly different thrillers, The Escape Room, Before She Was Found and Because You are Mine along with a cozy mystery and a romantic thriller.  All great reads. Enjoy Reading! 

Books read this week

The Escape Room by Megan Goldin

Before She Was Found by Heather Gudenkauf

Because You are Mine by Rea Frey

The Ladies Guide to Ettiquette and Murder by Dianne Freeman

Steel Resolve by BJ Daniels

 

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Kirke | Reply 25.11.2019 11.05

Much media suggest teachers teach only subjects, but really: "... our job as teachers to help her learn to read, understand and think critically on her own."

Kirke | Reply 10.06.2019 12.03

The news Jacquelyn Winespear is on my summer reading list.
Looking forward to another Maise Dobbs

KATHY | Reply 24.12.2018 00.28

Always look forward to your weekly blog, Marti ... safe travels this week. Merry Christmas!

Jeannie | Reply 01.10.2018 16.20

Happy Birthday! I remember when book club started when you turned 50. OMG! 100% agree with political status. So disappointing. Happy Foliage!

Jeannie | Reply 27.05.2018 23.23

Outraged, too! It is just getting coverage. This government is shameful under this leadership.

Jeannie | Reply 26.03.2018 16.01

At first I thought it said spa season. Either way it is a sign of rejuvenation! On a Kristin Hannah kick, loved Winter Garden. Happy reading!

Jeannie | Reply 19.03.2018 14.10

Cities are fun but exhausting. Like you the quiet is needed.

Kirke | Reply 28.08.2017 06.12

August snow days! What a fantastic idea! I've been reading Martin Walker's Bruno series set in rural France full or recipes. Yum

Kirke | Reply 17.07.2017 09.13

Like you Marty, neither my heart nor my brain have ever been able to grasp why an adult would humiliate a learner. Slowness and errors are just part of learning

Barbara | Reply 02.07.2017 06.35

Hey, Marti - Found the blog about your dad. Very nice. I have to tell you that Zane Grey is one of my favorites, too. I've read Riders of the Purple Sage 2-3x

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Latest comments

25.11 | 11:05

Much media suggest teachers teach only subjects, but really: "... our job as teachers to help her learn to read, understand and think critically on her own."

...
29.08 | 02:19

I love reading. I will start reading Rough Ride by Kristen Ashley after my https://www.goldenbustours.com/grand-canyon-tours/ and hope it would be interesting.

...
10.06 | 12:03

The news Jacquelyn Winespear is on my summer reading list.
Looking forward to another Maise Dobbs

...
24.12 | 00:28

Always look forward to your weekly blog, Marti ... safe travels this week. Merry Christmas!

...
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