Monday, February 27, 2023

Happy Landings: Emilie Loring’s Life, Writing, and Wisdom by Patti Bender

Title: Happy Landings: Emilie Loring’s Life, Writing, and Wisdom
Author: Patti Bender
Publication: City Point Press, hardcover, 2023
Genre: Biography/Literary Criticism
Setting: Massachusetts and Maine
Patti Bender has created a biography of Boston-born writer Emilie Loring that is part labor of love and part interpretive narrative, describing a life story that was rich in friendship, idealism, and dedication to family – all of which were revealed in her books.

Thursday, February 23, 2023

Partners in Crime by Agatha Christie #ReadChristie23

Title: Partners in Crime
Author: Agatha Christie
Publication: Dell, paperback, originally published in 1929
Genre: Mystery
Description: Tommy and Tuppence Beresford, first encountered when they were single in The Secret Adversary, are now happily married but Tuppence is bored. Fortunately, Tommy’s boss asks them to go undercover and pretend to be Mr. Blunt and his secretary of the Theodore Blunt International Detective Agency.

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

The Girl With the Silver Eyes by Willo Davis Roberts

Title: The Girl With the Silver Eyes
Author: Willo Davis Roberts (1928-2004)
Publication: Scholastic, paperback, originally published in 1980
Genre: Juvenile fiction
Setting: A mid-20th century midwestern city
Description: Until recently, Katie lived with her grandmother who was unnerved by Katie’s ability to move things using her mind. Katie knows she is different and she learned the word for what she can do – telekinesis – but she doesn’t understand why people fear and talk about her.

Saturday, February 18, 2023

The Whalebone Theatre by Joanna Quinn – historical fiction set between the wars

Title: The Whalebone Theatre
Author: Joanna Quinn
Publication: Knopf, hardcover, 2022
Genre: Historical England
Setting: 20th century Britain and France
Description: Cristabel Seagrave, a neglected orphan, grows up between the wars in a Dorset manor house, with half-sister Flossie and cousin Digby who follow her on every adventure. When a 7-foot whale is beached nearby, the children are fascinated, as is a larger-than-life Russian artist who appears at the same time with his family and becomes part of the Seagraves’ lives.

Monday, February 13, 2023

Widows of the Ice: The Women That Scott’s Antarctic Expedition Left Behind by Anne Fletcher

Title: Widows of the Ice: The Women That Scott’s Antarctic Expedition Left Behind
Author: Anne Fletcher
Publication: Amberley Publishing, hardcover, 2022
Genre: History
Setting: Britain and Antarctica
Description: British Naval Officer Robert Falcon Scott led two expeditions to the Antarctic: the Discovery expedition of 1901–1904 and the Terra Nova expedition of 1910–1913, from which he did not return.

Friday, February 10, 2023

My January 2023 Reads

Not as much variety in my reading last month as usual.  My favorite book was The Man Who Died Twice by Richard Osman, second in a mystery series set in an upscale retirement community in Britain.

YA Historical Fiction
Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys (2016). Three young people, thrown together by fate in East Prussia at the end of WWII, are among the thousands of refugees are on a desperate trek to reach the Wilhelm Gustloff, a ship that is evacuating civilians from the Russian army.

Monday, February 6, 2023

Horse by Geraldine Brooks

Title: Horse
Author: Geraldine Brooks
Publication: Viking, hardcover, 2022
Genre: Historical Fiction
Setting: 19th, 20th, and 21st century United (or not so) States
Description: Brooks tells the fascinating story of the little-known but legendary racehorse, Lexington, by imagining his enslaved groom/trainer, along with the real-life artists of the era who specialized in equine portraits, a 20th-century art dealer, and two contemporary characters who meet in DC and puzzle out the history together.

Saturday, February 4, 2023

Six Degrees of Separation – from Trust to The Big Killing

It’s time for #6degrees, inspired by Kate at Books Are My Favourite and Best. We all start at the same place, add six books, and see where we end up. This month’s starting point is Trust by Hernan Diaz, which my book group read and I reviewed last month.

Thursday, February 2, 2023

Alias Emma by Ava Glass: a breakneck chase across London

Title: Alias Emma
Author: Ava Glass
Publication: Bantam Books, hardcover, 2022
Genre: Suspense
Setting: Present-day London
Description: Emma Makepeace (that’s not her real name) is a newly trained spy when she is relieved from tedious undercover work in a tee shirt store and given a major assignment – bringing the doctor son of two important Russian defectors into protective custody.

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Smouldering Fire by D.E. Stevenson

Title: Smouldering Fire
Author: D.E. Stevenson
Publication: Furrowed Middlebrow/Dean Street Press, paperback, originally published 1935
Genre: Fiction
Setting: Scotland
Description: The life of a Scottish Laird is not as idyllic as it used to be, even in D.E. Stevenson land. Iain MacAslan loves Ardfalloch so much that, in order to pay the bills, he forces himself to lease it to a rich businessman for the hunting season.