Monday, March 16, 2009


Congratulations Marta! It's time for a celebration!

Check out Marta's blog for a fantastic giveaway to celebrate her 100th post! You can find it here at

Saturday, March 14, 2009

New Orleans Requiem by D. J. Donaldson

I loved the New Orleans memories this book brought back. Almost everywhere the characters went, I could envision. That being said, I didn't ever see any murders while I was there and one can only be thankful for that! This was a very well-written murder mystery and I'm sorry to say that it is now out of print. I'll be keeping an eye out for more of D.J.Donaldson's work. In checking his website, I found that this particular series of books are all out of print. I find that sad as I enjoyed it so much.

The book is part of a series of Andy Broussard/Kit Franklin mysteries. In this one, a serial murder appears in New Orleans at the same time as a convention of forensic specialists. Kit and Andy work with the local law enforcement, and a couple of their forensic friends to solve the murder.
I recommend this book and wish everyone interested in reading it luck in your search. Meanwhile I'm starting my search for others in the series!

Louis Armstrong by Mike Pinfold

If you've never heard him, you don't know what you're missing. His voice was one of a kind. His skill with his horn again one of a kind. There was no one like "Satchmo". His story is as inspiring as it is amazing. Louis Armstrong was one of the greats!

This book is a comprehensive story of his life and career. Well worth reading. His music is well worth listening to. I hope you've taken a few minutes and clicked on the above link for one of his more familiar songs.

Louis Armstrong by Mike Pinfold

Love and Other Natural Disasters by Holly Shumas

What is worse, a physical affair? Or an emotional affair? What is more forgiveable? Love and Other Natural Disasters is an exploration of how one couple gets through an emotional affair. Holly Shumas is a licensed marriage and family therapist who explores this idea in her second novel. Eve is close to giving birth to her second child, and reflecting on the wonderful life she has with her husband Jonathan, when she discovers he is involved, emotionally, with another woman. How she reacts to this knowledge, and how she struggles to make sense of it is only half the story. Her hurt is palpable and yet at the same time I felt some of her reactions were extreme. But then again, how do we know how we would react given the same situation. How would you feel and what would you do if you found that your husband had an emotionally intimate relationship with another woman. That he was more able to discuss and share things with her than you. And even more hurtful is that he kept it secret. Jon's affair is mostly conducted through email and that makes the secretiveness easy without any outright lies. As such, he doesn't see this extra-marital relationship as wrong as there is no physical relationship. It is a sign of the times that people can meet and become emotionally involved online, without even meeting in person. Could this difference of thought and perspective be attributed in part to how men and women are emotionally wired? An interesting story that gives much to think about. A well-written book and I recommend it.

Bark up the Right Tree by Jessie & Ruth Tschudin

This one is for all the animal lover's out there. If you love dogs, and your heart goes out to all those in need of forever homes, then this is one book you should definitely read! Jessie (the dog) is a mature black labrador retriever, abandoned by her family, who found a new home with Ruth Tschudin who had a vision that grew from a dog pulling a child in a wagon, to "a place where adoptive families and abandoned animals could love and support each other." This is Jessie's story, told through Jessie's eyes, but with Ruth's assistance, because we all know it's kind of difficult for a dog to type! This story is heart-breaking, and heart-warming. Be prepared for tears and joy! And visit Jessie's website at

Eagle Brand Classic Recipes

Who doesn't need another handy little recipe book of way to yummy recipes! this is just such a book. The cover along makes you hungry. This one comes in handy for all those special occasions when you need to take something along for a potluck, or when company's coming and you want to serve something special. I like that some of the recipes are make-ahead-able and freeze-able. Once again, far to many choices but one need never again wonder what to do with that can of Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk!

Top Tarts - Ten Recipes by Tamasin Day-Lewis

This tiny little book inspired me and made me hungry! I need to go on a shopping trip to get some ingredients, but first I would have to make up my mind which tarts to try. I love that she has included a section on mastering pastry, especially since pastry and I have been enemies for quite some time. Then I would have to decide...will it be the ever favorite Quiche Lorraine? Or, should I try the Tomato and Prosciutto Tart? Or maybe the Ambrosial Peach, Vanilla and Amaretti Tarte Tatin. To many yummy choices!

Family Plots: Love, Death & Tax Evasion by Mary Patrick Kavanaugh

I didn't quite know what to make of this book at first. I think the title and the cover are indicative of the unique and unusual sense of humor of the author. After all, included on the cover is a 'stamp' "Awarded Sixteen Rejections from Prominent NYC Publishers 2008". Rejections? Hmmm... After reading it, I'm not sure why. I found it entertaining to say the least. Possibly the rejectors didn't like the mix of fact and fiction? Mary Patrick Kavanaugh says this "Family Plots is a novel based on the facts of my life. Many events are drawn from actual experiences; however, I have collapsed time, conflated characters, invented dialogue, and rendered some fictional scenes and characters purely for dramatic impact. Because I am not the first or last writer to sensationalize the verifiable data of my personal life, I think there should be a genre recognized for this category of work. If it were up to me, I'd call it Pulp Faction." I have to agree with her. I applaud her story-telling abilities and enjoyed the quirky approach.

Mary Patrick Kavanaugh also has a website and I have to say Kudos to Mary for not giving up!

Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom

Although I've been wanting to read this book for awhile...ever since I read "The Five People You meet in Heaven"...I didn't have it on my list until a conversation with a friend brought it to mind. After talking about it, I just had to read it. I'm glad I did. This is a wonderful conversation between the author and his favorite teacher. A relationship that wasn't simply student and teacher, but friend, and mentor as well. We all have at least one person in our lives who we think of as a mentor and who is or was one of those simply wise people we wish we could be around forever. Morrie is one of those who when faced with the certainty of his own death, stands strong and proud in his beliefs and his attitude to life. We can all learn from his example. All I can say is.....Read it. Read it!

Land of Marvels by Barry Unsworth

"Barry Unsworth, a writer with an "almost magical capacity for literary time travel" (New York Times Book Review) has the extraordinary ability to re-create the past and make it relevant to contemporary readers." is a quote from the back of the book. I really enjoyed this book. I've always had a fascination for archeology and history and combining that with a newer interest in all things middle eastern, this book fit right in! I found it compelling and informative even though it is a work of fiction. The story is set in 1914, pre-WWI times. The historical, archeaological & geological information was interesting and educational at the same time. I enjoy when an author adds little snippets of relevant information to their story. The characters are realistic and believable and make you want to care about the story. This is the kind of book that can draw the reader right in and I felt like I had been on this adventure with them. I didn't like the way the story ended, but it fits. I would still recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction. This one's a keeper for me!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Update for the Book Carnival Giveaway Winner

Flip has not responded to my email, or post regarding winning Vigilante Witch Hunter, and email has come back officially as undeliverable. Consequently I have asked my son to draw another number, and the lucky winner is #22, Velocibadgergirl! An email has been sent. Congratulations Velocibadgergirl!

Monday, March 9, 2009


FLIP!!!! Congratulations Flip!

Many thanks to all who participated in my first giveaway! I'm looking forward to more giveaways in the future. :)

Monday, March 2, 2009


Since I received two copies of the thriller, Vigilante Witch Hunter by Gary Turcotte, I thought it would be nice to share the wealth! I haven't read it yet, so what follows is from the back of the book.

Every dark cloud does not have a silver lining.

Melissa married the man of her dreams. She didn't know that he was a fortune teller. His secret life brought many dark hearted people into Melissa's future. She wondered if her soulmate had sold his soul to the devil. Sometimes a buried treasure is best left alone.

Leave a comment to be entered into the draw for this book. I will be posting the winner on Sunday, March 8, 2009. Giveaway is open to everyone. There will be one winner.

Book Giveaway Carnival! is hosting the next Book Giveaway Carnival starting on March 2nd and running through until March 8th. I'm joining in the fun! You can to! You can find more information here. I'll have a book to give away listed shortly, so check back soon!