Thursday, February 25, 2021

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson - first in a trilogy set in Revolutionary-era New York

Title: Chains: Seeds of America #1
Author: Laurie Halse Anderson
Publication: Simon & Schuster, hardcover, 2008
Genre: Juvenile Historical Fiction
Setting: 18th-century New York
Description: Isabel (13) and her younger sister Ruth are slaves and orphans, having lost their mother a year earlier and their father, sold away from his family when Ruth was just a baby. 

Monday, February 22, 2021

The English Wife by Adrienne Chinn – historical fiction that begins in WWII England and leads to isolated Newfoundland

Title: The English Wife
Author: Adrienne Chinn
Publication: One More Chapter, trade paperback, 2020
Genre: Dual-timeline fiction
Setting: England and Newfoundland
Description: This is a story of two sisters living in Norwich during World War II and their descendants.  Ellie has always planned to marry her childhood friend George until she meets an outgoing Canadian soldier from Newfoundland.  Her sister Dottie disapproves because she doesn’t want Ellie to move away and her father disapproves because George is not Catholic, but Tom persuades her to tie the knot before he gets sent overseas.   

Friday, February 19, 2021

Chocolate Caramels for Anne Shirley

For the L.M. Montgomery Cooking Challenge, I decided to make Chocolate Caramels

But Anne could not eat. In vain she nibbled at the bread and butter and pecked at the crab-apple preserve out of the little scalloped glass dish by her plate. She did not really make any headway at all.

“You’re not eating anything,” said Marilla sharply, eying her as if it were a serious shortcoming. Anne sighed. 

“I can’t. I’m in the depths of despair. Can you eat when you are in the depths of despair?” 

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman

Title: The Thursday Murder Club
Author: Richard Osman
Publication: Viking, hardcover, 2020
Genre: Mystery
Setting: Present-day England
Description: Four senior citizens at Coopers Chase, an upscale retirement community in England, meet on Thursdays to discuss unsolved police cases, and then they encounter a real murder . . .

Saturday, February 13, 2021

Be Mine

For Valentine's Day, I thought I’d look at the last ten books I read with 💙 in the title.  
You're wrong if you think they're all romances:

Hearts in Trim by Lavinia R. Davis (1954) – YA 
Jointly inheriting a book collection leads to romance between Serena “Squeak” Bruce and her high school classmate Cliff.  I have to say this is one of my favorite covers and it does make you immediately want to read the book.   Thank you to Phair who sent me this book from her own collection when I mentioned my mother enjoyed Davis growing up.  But why did those 50s heroines have such dreadful nicknames? Beany Malone, Dinny Gordon, Twink Elliott, and more . . .  

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Saturday, February 6, 2021

Six Degrees of Separation - from Redhead By the Side of the Road to The Face on the Milk Carton

It’s time for #6degrees, inspired by Kate at Books Are My Favourite and Best. We all start at the same place as other readers, add six books, and see where you end up.   This month’s starting point is Redhead By the Side of the Road by Anne Tyler.  I have read one or two of Tyler’s books but not this one; however, it did start me thinking about redheaded protagonists.  Anne Shirley may be the most famous but I realized I had read about many others . . .

First Degree
To the Tiger in the Zoo, Madeline just said "Pooh, Pooh!"

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday is hosted by Taking on a World of Words.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?

What did you recently finish reading?

What do you think you’ll read next?

Right now I am reading Secret Places by Janice Elliott (1981), set during World War II, in which teenage Patience Mackenzie befriends Laura Meister, a refugee from Germany, who joins her girls' day school in England.  There is also a movie with Jenny Agutter in the cast; here is the beginning.

Monday, February 1, 2021

The Proper Place by O. Douglas

Title: The Proper Place
Author: O. Douglas aka Anna Buchan
Publication: Kindle, originally published 1926
Genre: Fiction
Setting: 1920s Scotland
Description: The Rutherfurds were an energetic and happy family not long ago: Sir Walter, a pillar of the neighborhood; his quiet but much-admired wife, Lady Jane; two splendid sons; daughter Nicole; and niece Barbara Burt, who has been part of the family since childhood.   However, Nicole’s brothers were killed in the war, and Sir Walter took their loss badly, faded away and died three months ago.  There is no longer enough money to support the ancestral estate so the lawyer has persuaded Lady Jane to sell and move somewhere smaller and more manageable.  As the story begins, the wife of a self-made prosperous businessman from Glasgow has come to inspect Rutherfurd with the idea of acquiring a country estate.  Mrs. Jackson is sure her husband will like it, and she is charmed by 24-year-old Nicole’s tour and friendly demeanor.