Saturday, May 31, 2014

A Million Ways to Die in the West

Fiction by Seth McFarlane.

Seth MacFarlane's A Million Ways to Die in the West: A Novel

This book was funny, but amazingly AMAZINGLY crude and vulgar. I mean, I know one expects that from Seth McFarlane, but it went a lot farther than I'd expected.

So... it had a good plot, and it was really funny in places, but WATCH OUT!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Case Histories

Fiction by Kate Atkinson.

Case Histories (Jackson Brodie Series #1)

A really good mystery story, this novel ties together three (or four) seemingly unrelated crimes.

I also read by this author: Life After Life.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

A Land More Kind Than Home

Fiction by Wiley Cash.

A Land More Kind Than Home

A novel about a snake-handling church in West Virginia, this story was told from three different perspectives: the county sheriff, a little boy, and an old woman.

It's a good book.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Little Lies

Fiction by Heather Gudenkauf.

Little Lies

Heather Gudenkauf is one of my favorite authors. This was a great story, about a social worker trying to solve a murder mystery, but it was short.

Just FYI, that's what "novella" means. It means "short."

So I should have anticipated this problem, obviously. It's the prequel to another novel, so I'll have to look for the full story. This particular one was e-book only.

Other books I've read by this author: One Breath Away, These Things Hidden, The Weight of Silence.  

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

The Kept

Fiction by James Scott.

The Kept: A Novel

This is a story about a midwife in the late 19th century and her family. Since it says on the cover that it is a "revenge novel," I suppose it's not a spoiler to say most of that family ends up dead in the first part.

The best word I can use to describe this novel is BLEAK. I mean, the characters, the setting, the story.... all of it was unredeemedly depressing and hopeless. I kept reading to find out the ending, but now I'm sorry I did.

Because the ending was even worse. I hate to give a thumbs-down; I really do. But...

Saturday, May 17, 2014

The Courage Tree

Fiction by Diane Chamberlain.

The Courage Tree

Janine's little girl Sophie has been dying of kidney disease for years. But when the child is eight, Janine has the courage to try an experimental new treatment that is actually helping. Sophie finally feels well enough to do some normal activities, and to go to Girl Scout camp for the first time. And then something even more terrible happens to Sophie....

At the same time an aging star tries to find a way to save her own wayward daughter, the one she feels like she's failed.

This was a great book, a real page-turner. I read it in one day.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Lies You Wanted to Hear

Fiction by James Whitfield Thomson.

Lies You Wanted to Hear

Really, really good novel. Don't read the synopsis that gives the story away, just read this book!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Stella Bain

Fiction by Anita Shreve.

Stella Bain

This story begins with a woman in France during the first world war. She is wounded and has lost her memory, but she says her name is Stella Bain. It turns out it isn't.

This was a good book, but not as good as others I've read by this author. Check out The Pilot's Wife or  The Last Time They Met  instead.

I also read recently by this author: A Change in Altitude

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Twilight Children

Nonfiction by Torey Hayden.

Twilight Children: Three Voices No One Heard Until a Therapist Listened

Another great book about this child psychologist's true experiences, this story kept me interested the whole time. I really enjoyed the characters. The only problem is, with reality, you don't get the tidy endings you are hoping for, and things don't come out quite the way you want.

I also read recently by this author: Just Another Kid.

Thursday, May 8, 2014


Fiction by Veronica Roth.

Insurgent (Divergent Series #2)

This is the sequel to Divergent. It's not quite as good as the first book, but still interesting and readable.

I'm definitely hooked and must read  the last book in the trilogy. (Meaning I have to wait my turn at the library. I'm number 110 on the list by the way. Sigh.)

The Divergent movie wasn't too bad either.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The Missing Girl

Fiction by Norma Fox Mazer.

The Missing Girl

This is a teen book that my daughter read for a book report. I couldn't get interested in it.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend

Fiction by Matthew Dicks.

Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend

This story is actually narrated by an imaginary friend. Amazing, huh?

Budo is the imaginary friend of an autistic boy named Max. He cannot be seen or heard by anyone but Max, and the other imaginary friends he meets.  He exists only as long as Max believes in him.

But one day it is up to Budo to save Max....

A really good story.

I also read by this author: Unexpectedly Milo.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

The Whole World Over

Fiction by Julia Glass.

The Whole World Over

A good book about a New York woman who is a baker/chef. It had some really well-drawn characters; although I didn't always agree with their actions I could understand why they made the decisions they did.

Also by this author: The Widower's Tale, Three Junes (I've read these but apparently didn't write about them. Both are very good. )

Friday, May 2, 2014

Just Another Kid

Nonfiction by Torey Hayden.

Just Another Kid

A good story about a small class of special-needs kids... and one special-needs adult.

I also read by this author: Beautiful Child, Murphy's Boy, Ghost Girl