Archive for April, 2009

Serendipity by Louise Shaffer

I really enjoyed reading this book – the well drawn characters and the historical aspect captivated me. Also, I was intrigued by the mystery of what happened between Carrie’s mother and grandmother to keep them from talking for 30+ years. It reminded me a little of Adriana Trigiani’s work.

Carrie is the daughter and granddaughter of theater royalty. Her grandmother is Lu Lawson, a famous stage actress, and her father was Bobby Manning, the great composer and writer. Carrie though has lived with her mother, who runs a shelter, and never met Lu. So when her mother dies, leaving Carrie alone and drifting, she decides to finally find her family which actually takes her all the way back to her grandmother, an Italian immigrant.


April 27, 2009 at 7:46 am Leave a comment

A Date You Can’t Refuse by Harley Jane Kozak

I’ve enjoyed the other entries in this series, but this one was difficult for me, it started off good, then lagged, but I was pleasantly surprised (rewarded?) with the ending, and now want to see what’s next for Wollie. I hope it won’t be so long between books again.

Wollie Shelley isn’t happy about taking the job as a “social coach” at MediaRex, but the FBI makes her an offer she can’t refuse. If she agrees to infiltrate the company, they’ll guarantee that her schizophrenic brother will have a home at the federally subsidized halfway house he’s come to love. So Wollie launches into teaching three foreign celebrities how to cope with the customs of Beverly Hills, improve their English, and become Oprah-ready. And when a coyote-chewed corpse appears in the MediaRex compound, Wollie realizes that her colleagues are concealing some serious secrets of their own.

April 25, 2009 at 1:41 pm Leave a comment

Starvation Lake by Bryan Gruley

This was a slow starter, and when it did get interesting, it was ok, but didn’t grip me the way I wanted. Plus I’d pretty much figured out what was going on. And I don’t really like it when I’m smarter than the characters.
I enjoyed the hockey scenes. That was interesting.
Otherwise, I’m not sure I’d pick up another one. I think this might be the start of series. And really it’s ok as a standalone. I don’t care enough about the characters, plus some it was fuzzy in my head, and really the prologue didn’t make sense, even in the end. If an author is going to do a prologue at least take the time to tie up that loose end.

Here’s the official summary from the back of the book:

n the dead of a Michigan winter, pieces of a snowmobile wash up near the crumbling, small town of Starvation Lake — the same snowmobile that went down with Starvation’s legendary hockey coach years earlier. But everybody knows Coach Blackburn’s accident happened five miles away on a different lake. As rumors buzz about mysterious underground tunnels, the evidence from the snowmobile says one thing: murder.

Gus Carpenter, editor of the local newspaper, has recently returned to Starvation after a failed attempt to make it big at the “Detroit Times,” In his youth, Gus was the goalie who let a state championship get away, crushing Coach’s dreams and earning the town’s enmity. Now he’s investigating the murder of his former coach. But even more unsettling to Gus are the holes in the town’s past and the gnawing suspicion that those holes may conceal some dark and disturbing secrets secrets that some of the people closest to him may have killed to keep.

April 20, 2009 at 7:36 am Leave a comment

Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear

Maisie is a unique investigator in 1929 London. She doesn’t quite solve mysteries, but does some type of psychology and sleuthing to help people find answers. This is the first book in a series, and sets up Maisie’s back story nicely. I found the characters to be engaging and I enjoyed the time period.

I’ll be reading the rest of the series.

April 18, 2009 at 7:24 am 1 comment

Love In Bloom by Sheila Roberts

I enjoyed this sweet tale, it was rather perfect to read over Easter weekend since that is when the story begins.
Hope Walker, 30, is a breast cancer survivor, which left her with lots of scarring and some serious fears about dating. When it comes to love and relationships she works magic through flower arranging, as owner of Heart Lake’s flower shop, but is unable to help herself.

This had engaging characters, and a surprise at the end, which had me in tears.

Realistic and romantic all at the same time.

I also enjoyed the flower/gardening tips at the beginning of each section.

April 14, 2009 at 7:31 am Leave a comment

Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl

This was an interesting perspective of concentration camp survival. Frankl is/was a psychologist and told of camp life through this perspective. The second two parts introduce logotherapy – which is his theory, where man’s search for meaning is the primary motivation in his life. I skimmed the second parts, but found the entire work to be inspiring and interesting.

Makes me want to read Night by Elie Wiesel

April 13, 2009 at 7:28 am Leave a comment

Fatally Flaky by Diane Mott Davidson

Another fine entry into the Goldy series. I really like Goldy. She seems real to me, she’s flawed, has overcome an abusive relationship and yet sometimes she’s still insecure. The only thing I didn’t like was how minimalized Arch was in this book. I’m wondering too if it’s time to spin off Julian into his own series.  As not much happens to move her character forward anymore – she’s just content being married and doing her catering gigs and stumbling over a dead body now and then.

This summer Goldy’s been catering lots of weddings and Bridezilla Billie Attenbourough has changed her date three times.  Then she changes the location to Gold Gulch Spa two days before her nuptials. Then beloved Doc Finn is murdered on his way to the Spa and Goldy’s godfather is attacked at the wedding reception at Gold Gulch Spa, so Goldy goes undercover to find out what is going on there.

April 6, 2009 at 8:13 am Leave a comment

Older Posts

Currently Reading

I'm currently reading: Castaways by Elin Hilderbrand . . . Look for a review soon!


April 2009
« Mar   May »