Sunday, March 31, 2019

34. We Set the Dark on Fire by Tehlor Kay Majia

listened on Audible - borrowed from CCPL
read by Kyla Garcia
Unabridged audio (9:54)
2019 Katherine Tegen Books
384 pgs.
YA Dystopia
Finished 3/31/19
Goodreads rating:  3.78 - 982 ratings
My rating: 1
Setting: Dystopian Mexico, seemingly

First line/s:  "Daniela Vargas woke at the first whisper of footsteps coming up the road."

My comments:  Yuck.  I'm so glad this endless book is over.  It took a zillion pages to tell a story that could've been told in 100.  So incredibly repetitious that I went cross-eyed every time Dani thought the same thoughts over and over...and over...again.  I don't care about any of the characters.  At all.  I hve no idea why it's gotten so many good reviews...I do love the premise, but not much else.

Goodreads synopsis:  At the Medio School for Girls, distinguished young women are trained for one of two roles in their polarized society. Depending on her specialization, a graduate will one day run a husband’s household or raise his children, but both are promised a life of comfort and luxury, far from the frequent political uprisings of the lower class. Daniela Vargas is the school’s top student, but her bright future depends upon no one discovering her darkest secret—that her pedigree is a lie. Her parents sacrificed everything to obtain forged identification papers so Dani could rise above her station. Now that her marriage to an important politico’s son is fast approaching, she must keep the truth hidden or be sent back to the fringes of society, where famine and poverty rule supreme.
          On her graduation night, Dani seems to be in the clear, despite the surprises that unfold. But nothing prepares her for all the difficult choices she must make, especially when she is asked to spy for a resistance group desperately fighting to bring equality to Medio. Will Dani cling to the privilege her parents fought to win for her, or to give up everything she’s strived for in pursuit of a free Medio—and a chance at a forbidden love?

Thursday, March 28, 2019

33. Someone Else's Love Story by Joshilyn Jackson

listened on Audible
read by the author in her wonderful, lilting southern style
Unabridged audio (12:03)
2013 William Morrow
320 pgs.
Finished 3/28/2019
Goodreads rating:  3.66 - 12,164 ratings
My rating: 4
Setting:  Contemporary Atlanta

First line/s:  "I fell in love with William Ashe at gunpoint, in a Circle K."

My comments:  I could listen to Joshilyn Jackson read forever.  The story seemed particularly long and drawn out, but I didn't care because of that.  It's an intricate story that winds in and out and around itself, with its own little histories and pleasures and treasures peeking out every so often.  Many love stories are touched upon in this novel - right down, in a way, to the robber's as well.  told from two points of view, one even allows us a chance to climb inside the brain of someone with Asbergers.  Jackson has written tighter novels, but this is good nonetheless.

Goodreads synopsis:  At twenty-one, Shandi Pierce is juggling finishing college, raising her delightful three-year-old genius son Natty, and keeping the peace between her eternally warring, long-divorced Catholic mother and Jewish father. She’s got enough complications without getting caught in the middle of a stick-up in a gas station mini-mart and falling in love with a great wall of a man named William Ashe, who willingly steps between the armed robber and her son.
          Shandi doesn’t know that her blond god Thor has his own complications. When he looked down the barrel of that gun he believed it was destiny: It’s been one year to the day since a tragic act of physics shattered his universe. But William doesn’t define destiny the way other people do. A brilliant geneticist who believes in science and numbers, destiny to him is about choice.
           Now, he and Shandi are about to meet their so-called destinies head on, in a funny, charming, and poignant novel about science and miracles, secrets and truths, faith and forgiveness,; about a virgin birth, a sacrifice, and a resurrection; about falling in love, and learning that things aren’t always what they seem—or what we hope they will be. It’s a novel about discovering what we want and ultimately finding what we need.

Sunday, March 24, 2019

32. Skyward by Brandon Sanderson

listened on Audible
read by Suzy Jackson
Unabridged audio (15:28)
2018 Gollancz
510 pgs.
YA SciFi
Finished 3/24/2019
Goodreads rating: 4.55 - 22,753 ratings
My rating:  4

First line/s:  "Only fools climbed to the surface.  It was stupid to put yourself in danger like that, my mother always said.  Not only were there near-constant debris showers from the rubble belt, but you never knew when the Krell would attack."

My comments:  Hours and hours of simulated flight instruction and fighting the Krell, much of it over my head.  But for some reason I continued to listen and somewhat enjoy.  This world was hard to imagine, but I found Spensa's story and character development, as well as the writing, excellent.  Fascinating, actually.  So many questions, good ones, throughout the story.  Great narrator. 
     To remember before reading the next installment:  Spensa did not quite earn her captain status because she ejected, which is a no-no and not "brave."  However, in a battle to end all battles, she piloted Mbot, a mysterious flyer that she had found hidden in a cavern and repaired with the help of a friend.  Four of the ten people in her flight had been killed on missions - during training! - three had quit, and only two of her classmates had graduated and moved on.  Her arch enemy from the beginning has actually become a good friend (possible romance to come?).  Her instructor, Cobb, always on her side, had been her father's wing man.  It now looks like she is going to be a hero.  Still lots of questions to be answered about what is really going on out there in space.  Interesting.  Definitely want to continue.

Goodreads synopsis:  Defeated, crushed, and driven almost to extinction, the remnants of the human race are trapped on a planet that is constantly attacked by mysterious alien starfighters. Spensa, a teenage girl living among them, longs to be a pilot. When she discovers the wreckage of an ancient ship, she realizes this dream might be possible—assuming she can repair the ship, navigate flight school, and (perhaps most importantly) persuade the strange machine to help her. Because this ship, uniquely, appears to have a soul.

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Late March, 2019 Postcards

1931.  Poland
Old Padlock
Czesci Hello!
My name is Olivia.  I'm 8 years old.  I'm from Poland, from a small town called Olevnica.  My favorite animal is a hamster.  I like watching movies, listening listening to music and I like to ride a bike.  My dad is helping me with the postcard.  Regands, Olivia

1930.  Cyfarchion, WALES
on the Irish Sea
Hello and Greetings from Wales.  Welsh is my first language.  I also enjoy reading and knitting, are you on Ravelry?  I'm CLoistt if your are.  I'm currently obsessed with knitting socks - you can never have too many right?1  I'm reading Philip Pullman's Northern Lights trilogy atm and I love Stephen King books!  Happy knitting, Catrin

1929.  Oslo, Norway
Hello Chris, My name is Linda.  I live in a small town near our capital city of Oslo.  I have 3 children and 5 grandchildren, ages 12-22 years.  I retired 6 1/2 years ago and like having more time for my family and my hobbies.  I like books, music, art, the theater, my garden, and traveling when I can.
Best wishes, Linda

1927.  Kent, England
This exclusive design by Lauren Radley captures the essence of Ken't historic buildings and stunning countryside.  From the home of Winston Churchill and Jock the cat, fairytale castles, and iconic coast houses to the famous White Cliffs of Dover.
Hello from London!  Kent is just southeast of here and I was there last week for a short seaside holiday in a place called Whitstable which is lovely but not on the map.  Best wishes, Catherine

Friday, March 22, 2019

31. Lamb to the Slaughter by Karen Ann Hopkins

read on my iPhone (Kindle Unlimited)
2014 self-published
293 pgs.
Adult Contemporary Murder Mystery
Finished 3/22/2019
Goodreads rating: 4.03 - 2998 ratings
My rating:  3
Setting: Contemporary Blood Rock, Indiana

First line/s: "Hugging myself, I tried to stop shaking.  I'd burned my last bridge.  Forward was the only way to go."

My comments:  I have very mixed feelings about this book.  The first thing I must mention is it needed an incredible amount of editing.  It was very disconcerting to have so many errors.  I enjoyed the setting, the small town Amish/Englisher countryside of Indiana being very similar to where I live in Pennsylvania.  Character development is where I'm scratching my head the most.  The story is told from the point of view of the three main characters - one being the female Sheriff, Serenity Adams, the third being her probably-soon-to-be-suitor, Daniel.  Naomi is a self-centered, very unlikable young lady right from the start.  There are only a few glimpses of someone we feel sorry for in her own point-of-view scenes.  It's not until after she dies and you learn more about her from her two boyfriends that you really understand what she's been going through and feel sorry for her extremely difficult life.  However, the "mean girl" personality portrayed earlier keep continuing to overshadow new information about here.  It's a back-and-forth ride that doesn't make sense.  Serenity is smart and impetuous.  I don't really like her, or even understand her.  And I don't think she's well suited for the job of sheriff.  Daniel's cool.  I get him.  But I don't get his attraction to Serenity.  At least not yet - maybe in the upcoming book?  And now the story...the mystery... the way it all come together....not super strong, but it worked, with holes.
     I enjoy books about the Amish community, especially this type that shares the non-Amish and Amish point of view.  Even with all my questionable points about this first in a series, I do think I will continue on and try another.

Goodreads synopsis:  "A well-crafted tale of murder begotten by the collision of two incompatible worlds."-Kirkus Reviews
           The death of a teenage Amish girl in a cornfield looks like an accident, but sheriff Serenity Adams suspects foul play. To solve the murder, she must investigate the nearby Amish community with the help of a man who was shunned years ago. 
          Lamb to the Slaughter is a story about the intertwining lives of three unlikely people in an Indiana Amish Community and the devastating results when a rebellious teenage girl is found shot to death in a corn field during the harvest. 
          Serenity Adams is the newly elected young sheriff in the country town of Blood Rock and besides dealing with the threatening behavior of her predecessor, she now has a dead Amish girl on her plate. At first glance, the case seems obvious. The poor girl was probably accidentally shot during hunting season, but when the elders of the Amish community and even the girl’s parents react with uncaring subdued behavior, Serenity becomes suspicious. As she delves deeper into the secretive community that she grew up beside, she discovers a gruesome crime from the past that may very well be related to the Amish girl’s shooting. Serenity enlists the help of the handsome bad-boy building contractor, Daniel Bachman, who left the Amish when he was nineteen and has his own dark reasons to help the spunky sheriff solve the crime that the family and friends who shunned him are trying desperately to cover up. Serenity’s persistence leads her to a stunning discovery that not only threatens to destroy her blossoming romance with Daniel, but may even take her life in the end.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

30. Cornerstone by Misty Provencher

(#1 in Cornerstone series)
read on my iPhone
2011 self published:  Corner Stone Publishing
230 pgs.
YA Dystopia/Fantasy
Finished 3/19/19
Goodreads rating:  3.91 - 1388 ratings
My rating:  3.5
Setting:  Contemporary America

First line/s:  "I HATE PAPER DAY.  HATE.  IT.  But I still do it every week, sometimes twice a week, because my mom asks me to.  I know I shouldn't.  I know it doesn't help.  But I do it because I know that the only people in the world that we can count on is us."

My commentsCornerstone is the kind of book that draws you in immediately.  The first half of the book, well, I just couldn't put down.  The second half slowed down a bit and didn't hold my attention quite as much.  The instalove was the most offputting for me because I didn't understand what made Garrett so quickly drawn to Nalena.  Why hadn't he befriended her earlier?  The ending was not as much a cliffhanger as it was a segue into another chapter.  Will I read more?  Probably not, but I did enjoy this one. 

Goodreads synopsis:  Nalena Maxwell has been branded ‘The Waste’ at her new school, due to her mom's obsessive paper hoarding. Nalena desperately wants something to change in her life, but when she receives a sign (and it's the wrong dang one) inviting her into a mysterious, ancient community, too much changes. What she knew of her family, what she thought of her life and what she believed about her future, is no longer applicable. Seventeen years worth of family skeletons come crashing into Nalena's life and it is the boy...the one that smiles at her like he wants to hear everything she'll ever say...that already knows her powerful secrets. But it is only Nalena that can choose between protecting the life that is already crumbling beneath her feet and the one that might sacrifice everything she could ever have.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

29. Among the Shadows by Bruce Robert Coffin

#1 John Byron, Portland Maine Homicide Detective
read on my iPhone
2016 Witness Impulse
400 pgs.
Adult Mystery
Finished 3/17/2019
Goodreads rating: 4.27 - 1259 ratings
My rating: 3.5
Setting: Contemporary Portland, Maine

First line/s:  "The bitter stench of urine and impeding death permeated the small dingy bedroom."

My comments:  This was a well written police procedural about a smart, honest homicide detective in Portland, Maine.  I started this with great excitement the minute I knew it was contemporary Portland.  I wasn't disappointed, though it was a little slow in places and I wanted more setting (MAINE!).  Boy were there some bad cops in this novel, which of course dislike of cops in general.  Weird, really, that I love police procedurals...Looking forward to the next in the series.
     Detailed info to refresh my memory before reading #2 (spoilers included):  John Byron has begun an affair with his partner, Diane Joyner.  He has just taken down both his father's killer and his father's best friend.  Byron has spent twenty years thinking that his dad had committed suicide, which he now discovers is not the case at all.  The chief of police - Stanton - is a real jerk, and Byron's direct boss  always has his hands tied and is pretty much mamby-pamby.  Byron's "crew" seem pretty decent, honest, and hardworking.

Goodreads synopsis:  Fall in Portland, Maine usually arrives as a welcome respite from summer’s sweltering temperatures and, with the tourists gone, a return to normal life—usually. But when a retired cop is murdered, things heat up quickly, setting the city on edge.
          Detective Sergeant John Byron, a second-generation cop, is tasked with investigating the case—at the very moment his life is unraveling. On the outs with his department’s upper echelon, separated from his wife, and feeling the strong pull of the bottle, Byron remains all business as he tries to solve the murder of one of their own. And when another ex-Portland PD officer dies under suspicious circumstances, he quickly realizes there’s much more to these cases than meets the eye. The closer Byron gets to the truth, the greater the danger for him and his fellow detectives.
          This taut, atmospheric thriller will appeal to fans of Michael Connelly and John Sandford.

28. The Body Counter by Anne Frasier

#2 Jude Fontaine
listened on Audible
Read by Emily Sutton-Smith
Unabridged audio (8:31)
2018, Thomas & Mercer
297 pgs.
Adult Murder Mystery
Finished 3/17/19
Goodreads rating:  4.36 - 2107 ratings
My rating:4.5
Setting:  contemporary Minneapolis/St. Paul

First line/s:  "The woman in the apartment upstairs was screaming again."

My comments:  I remembered quite a bit about the first novel as I listened to this one, even though I read it quite a bit ago.  Jude Fontaine is difficult to forget, the corrupt governor's daughter, up-and-coming detective in the Minneapolis police who had been abducted and held captive in a dark cell for three years.  Discovering her father  and brother too, I think) was cruel and corrupt, she had killed him/them in the line of duty.  That was book number one.  In this book she is pitted against a serial killer who is following the Fibonacci sequence in his bloody slaughters.  Very bloody....  Fascinating story - one of those truly gritty, horrifying serial killer tomes.  Jude Fontaine is fascinating, as is her partner, Uriah Ashby.  Looking forward to number three.
     An added note to remember before reading number three and forgetting all the nitty-gritty of this one:  at the very end we discover that Elliot Kaplan, her downstairs neighbor and photo-journalist "friend" - and even suspect at one time for the murders - is actually her illegitimate brother.  She does not know.  Apparently her father had had an affair with or raped Elliot's mother.  Alsto, the relationship between Jude and Uriah is getting a little bit interesting in a vague way.  (Elliot is just out of the hospital.  He had been locked into "her" cell for three days and left for dead, but she realized it just as they were starting to demolish the house, which she had purchased.)

Goodreads synopsis:  From a New York Times bestselling author comes the chilling follow-up to the Thriller Award winner The Body Reader.       
          Months after discovering the mastermind behind her own kidnapping, Detective Jude Fontaine is dealing with the past the only way she knows how: by returning to every dark corner of it. But it’s a new, escalating series of mass slayings that has become her latest obsession at Homicide.      
          At first, Jude and her partner, Detective Uriah Ashby, can see no pattern to the seemingly random methods, the crime scenes, or the victims—until they’re approached by a brilliantly compulsive math professor. He believes that the madman’s next move is not incalculable; in fact, it’s all part of a sequential and ingenious numerical riddle. His theory is adding up. The body count is rising.
          But when the latest victim is found in Jude’s apartment, the puzzle comes with a personal twist that’s going to test the breaking point of her already-fragile state of mind. For all she knows, her number may be up.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

27. This Fallen Prey by Kelley Armstrong

Listened on Audible - with one of my Audible credits
2018 Minotaur Books
359 pgs.
(12:11) Unabridged Audio read by Terese Plummer
Adult Murder Mystery
Finished 3/13/2019
Goodreads rating:  4.07 - 4010 ratings
My rating:  3 (4 with some parts a 2....)
Setting:  Contemporary wilds of northern Canada

First line/s:  "The season may have officially started two months ago, but it isn't really spring in Rockton until we bury our winter dead."

My comments:  I have put a quick synopsis with all sorts of spoilers at the end of this brief review.
     Most of this novel takes place in the forest outside Rockton, with Casey and Dalton and their dog, Storm, doing a lot of running around, fighting all sorts of prey - human and animal - discovering one body after another and doing a great deal of swearing.  For some this has probably been quite exciting to read, for me it got a little tedious.  Way too much for me about Storm, the dog.  The also pay a lot of attention to taking care of wounded forest animals, which I discover is definitely not my thing, either.  Ms. Armstrong also is writing Casey as the brains of the police department, making Dalton more of a patsy, IMHO.  The cliffhanger ending is frustrating.  But of course I'll read the next installment much frustration as I have, I also love Rockton!

To remember before starting next in the series:  This Fallen Prey ends on a bit of a cliffhanger.  Rockton has been given a supposed serial killer, Oliver Brady, to guard for six months.  He escapes into the forest with Val (the community "leader" and only person who can communicate with the council) as a hostage.  (Note:  Val ends up on Brady's side, and also ends up dead....) Brady's stepfather, Wallace, is flown in by Phil, only known previously as the council voice on the other end of the phone.  It is soon discovered that Wallace is the serial killer.  Lots of deaths, and a very dangerous 14-year-old first settler female come to light.  Kenny, Casey's friend and the town carpenter, ends up with a bullet lodged beside his spine.  So at the very end the stepfather, Wallace, and the teenage girl have flown away, Phil has been left as the person in charge of Rockton, Brady (who Casey discovers was not innocent, he was actually an accomplice to Wallace) has been killed by Petra, who has apparently been ordered by some unknown to do so, and Casey is going to see if she can find a way for her sister, April, who is a neurosurgeon, to be flown in to remove the bullet from Kenny, the only way he'll survive.

Goodreads synopsis:  In This Fallen Prey, the next installment of New York Times bestselling author Kelley Armstrongs thriller series, Casey Duncan is about to face her toughest job as police detective in Rockton yet.When Casey first arrived at the off-the-grid town, an isolated community built as a haven for people running from their pasts, she had no idea what to expect, with no cell phones, no internet, no mail, and no way of getting in or out without the town councils approval. She certainly didnt expect to be the homicide detective on two separate cases or to begin a romantic relationship with her boss. But the very last thing she expected was for the council to drop a dangerous criminal into their midst without a plan to keep him imprisoned, and to keep others safe.Of course Oliver Brady claims he's being set up. But the longer Brady stays in town, the more things start to go wrong. When evidence comes to light that someone inside Rockton might be working as his accomplice, helping him to escape, Casey races to figure out who exactly Brady is and what crimes hes truly responsible for committing. In the next page-turning entry in Kelley Armstrongs gripping series, life in Rockton is about to get even more dangerous. 

Sunday, March 10, 2019

MOVIE - Captain Marvel

PG-13 (2:08)
Wide release 3/8/19
Viewed Sunday evening 3/10/19 in Carlisle
IMBd: 7.1/10
RT Critic: 79   Audience:  62
Critic's Consensus:  Packed with action, humor, and visual thrills, Captain Marvel introduces the MCU's latest hero with an origin story that makes effective use of the franchise's signature formula.
Cag:  3.5
Directed by Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck
Marvel Studios

Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Jude Law
My comments:  Not much to say, hard to follow at the beginning, somehow came together near the end, as usual a lot of battle scenes that I'm not very fond of - I'm sure most of the younger kids watching in the theater with me didn't understand much of what was going on but, oh well.

RT/ IMDb Summary  The story follows Carol Danvers as she becomes one of the universe's most powerful heroes when Earth is caught in the middle of a galactic war between two alien races. Set in the 1990s, Captain Marvel is an all-new adventure from a previously unseen period in the history of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

26. On the Island by Tracey Garvis Graves

listened on Audible
narrated by Heidi Baker
Unabridged Audio (7:02)
2012 Penguin
346 pgs.
Adult Contemporary Romance
Finished March 6, 2019
Goodreads rating:  4.13 - 68,819 ratings
My rating:  4
Setting: a tiny island in the Maldives area of the Indian Ocean, early 2000

First line/s:  "I was thirty years old when the seaplane T. J. Callahan and I were traveling on crash-landed in the Indian Ocean.  T.J. was sixteen and three months into remission from Hodgkins Lymphoma.  The pilot's name was Mick, but he died before we hit the water."

My comments:  Chapters went back and forth - first, Anna, then T.J.  The story is exactly as the Goodreads synopsis outlines, two people learning to live and survive on a beautiful island in the middle of the Indian ocean.  It becomes a love story, replete with hardships, dangers and sorrows, as well as joy, happiness and love - the kind of novel you read just for fun and end up totally enjoying!

Goodreads synopsis:  When thirty-year-old English teacher Anna Emerson is offered a job tutoring T.J. Callahan at his family's summer rental in the Maldives, she accepts without hesitation; a working vacation on a tropical island trumps the library any day.
          T.J. Callahan has no desire to leave town, not that anyone asked him. He's almost seventeen and if having cancer wasn't bad enough, now he has to spend his first summer in remission with his family - and a stack of overdue assignments -- instead of his friends. 
          Anna and T.J. are en route to join T.J.'s family in the Maldives when the pilot of their seaplane suffers a fatal heart attack and crash-lands in the Indian Ocean. Adrift in shark-infested waters, their life jackets keep them afloat until they make it to the shore of an uninhabited island. Now Anna and T.J. just want to survive and they must work together to obtain water, food, fire, and shelter.
          Their basic needs might be met but as the days turn to weeks, and then months, the castaways encounter plenty of other obstacles, including violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the possibility that T.J.'s cancer could return. As T.J. celebrates yet another birthday on the island, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

25. Widowmaker by Paul Doilron

#7 Mike Bowditch, Maine Game Warden
listened on Audible - from TPPL
read by Henry Leyva
Unabridged (10:00)
2016, Minotaur Books
306 pgs.
Adult Mystery
Finished March 5, 2019
Goodreads rating:  4.03 - 1668 ratings
My rating: 5
Setting:  Contemporary Maine Woods

First line/s:  "On my first day as a cadet at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, the instructors showed my class the most disturbing video I had ever seen."

My comments:  Mike Bowditch, much like Harry Potter did through each of the continuous novels about him, grows up and learns and becomes more and more of a thinker, better and better at his job and his impetuousness, as the years pass. He's really grown on me, and these stories - both the complex plotting and the much-loved setting in the woods of Maine, make these mysteries one of the very best series I've ever read.,

Goodreads synopsis:  In Paul Doiron's Widowmaker, When a mysterious woman in distress appears outside his home, Mike Bowditch has no clue she is about to blow his world apart. Amber Langstrom is beautiful, damaged, and hiding a secret with a link to his past.. She claims her son Adam is a wrongfully convicted sex offender who has vanished from a brutal work camp in the high timber around the Widowmaker Ski Resort. She also claims that Adam Langstrom is the illegitimate son of Jack Bowditch, Mike’s dead and diabolical father. He is the half-brother Mike never knew he had.
          After trying so hard to put his troubled past behind him, Mike is reluctant to revisit the wild country of his childhood and again confront his father’s history of violence. But Amber’s desperation and his own need to know the truth make it hard for him to refuse her pleas for help.
          In search of answers, Bowditch travels through a mountainous wilderness to a place hidden from the rest of the world, where the military guards a top-secret interrogation base, sexual predators live together in a backwoods colony, and self-styled vigilantes are willing to murder anyone they consider their enemies.
          Mike Bowditch must exorcise the demons of the past before the real-life demons of the present kill him first.

Monday, March 4, 2019

A Few Postcards from the Beginning of March, 2019

1924.  Leipzig, GERMANY
Dear Chris, Greetings from Sazony in Germany, where I'm at the moment with musical visit.  I live actually in Berlin, but travel quite a lot around the world.  Leipzig is very musical city with two big orchestras, opera, and Thomas Church where Bach used to work.  Hope you like my card choice.  Antoinette

1923.  Molodechno, Belarus
Hello Chris.  My name's Olga.  I'm originally from Molodechno, a town with over 90 thousand inhabitants, 75 km from Minsk, the capital of Belarus.  I like art, reading, watching movies, travelling, and cooking (but not so often :) Hope you like this card.  Have fun with postcrossing!  Best wishes, Olga

1920.  Hamburg, Germany
Hallo Chris!  Sending you lovely greetings from Hamburg.  At the weekend I love to visit flea markets and search for unwritten postcards.  It makes a lot of fun and sometimes I've got luck - like this card!  Wish you all the best and a lot of beautiful cards, Rebecca

1919.  Moscow, Russia
Room in New York, 1932, Edward Hopper
Zdravstuii!  Greetings from Moscow.  I like Japanese manga, calligraphy.  I learn Japanese so I read Harry Potter in Japanese :) EAsy and fun!  Have a nice day, Raisa

Sunday, March 3, 2019

24. A Shroud of Tattered Sails by Scott William Carter

#4 Garrison Gage, Oregon Coast PI
Listened on Audible
Read by Steven Roy Grimsley
Unabridged (8:43)
2015 Flying Raven Press (2016 for Audio)
282 pgs.
Adult Murder Mystery
Finished March 3, 2019
Goodreads rating: 4.22 - 376 ratings
My rating:  4
Setting:  Contemporary Barnacle Bluffs, Oregon Coast

First line/s:  "They walked side by side, but alone."

My comments:  Garrison Gage seems to be even more sarcastic and witty in this fourth installment, set again in Barnacle Bluffs, a beautiful tourist town on the Oregon coast.  By the end of this book, Garrison's life seems to be coming together in a really positive way - both with Zoe and a new love interest for himself.  And I'm not sure how I feel about that, to tell the truth.  I'm not sure how having a close relationship will work for him.  This was another good mystery, but not my favorite so far.  But still a 4!

Goodreads synopsis:  A beached sailboat. A missing man. A distraught woman staggering ashore. There to greet her—Garrison Gage, full-time curmudgeon and part-time private investigator, who quickly finds himself thrust into his familiar role of crusader for the desperate and downtrodden. The woman claims to have no memory, but is she lying? 
          When a body later washes ashore, the mystery deepens and the stakes ratchet up another notch. Dark money and even darker intentions. Violence both threatened and real. The woman may be at the heart of it all, or merely an innocent interloper who chose the wrong boat at the wrong time. Only Gage can discover the truth.

Saturday, March 2, 2019

One-Sentence Summaries

The Newbery Award is an annual award for the most distinguished American children's book published the previous year.  (It was the first Children's Book Award in the world - 1922.)

The Caldecott Award is an annual award for the artist of the best illustrated American children's book of the previous year.

The Coretta Scott King Book Awards are given annually to an outstanding African America AUTHOR and ILLUSTRATOR.

Hello Lighthouse by Blackall, Sophie
     2019 Caldecott Award Winner
          Follow a lighthouse keeper's life in a tiny, isolated lighthouse that sits on a rock in the middle of the sea -  first alone....then with his wife....then with a child, until the lighthouse becomes automated.

Merci Suarez Changes Gears by Meg Medina
     2019 Newbery Award Winner
          Merci Suarez is a scholarship student at an expensive academy in Florida - dealing with all the complications of being a preteen/middleschooler both at school and at home.  It's a really heartwarming story.

The Stuff of Stars by Ekua  (AY-kwa) Holmes
     2019 Coretta Scott King Illustration Winner
          Using hand-marbled paper and collage, Ekua Holmes created a stunning visual re-creation of how the universe was formed.

Friday, March 1, 2019

Postcards from Wales

2063.  Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, WALES
4 May 2021
Greetings from Wales, UK!  This aqueduct bridge in North Wales is the highest in the world.  I haven't yet gone over by narrow boat but hope to soon!  It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Have a great day!  Claire

1930.  Cyfarchion, WALES
on the Irish Sea
Hello and Greetings from Wales.  Welsh is my first language.  I also enjoy reading and knitting, are you on Ravelry?  I'm CLoistt if your are.  I'm currently obsessed with knitting socks - you can never have too many right?1  I'm reading Philip Pullman's Northern Lights trilogy atm and I love Stephen King books!  Happy knitting, Catrin