Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Scent of Jasmine by Jude Deveraux

This is the fifth book in the Edilean Series. The first three were great, but I think this one is even better. Now that I've sort of figured out the back and forth in history, I'm enjoying the series more. I think each book could be read on it's own, or in a different order with the same enjoyment. I loved the development of the relationship between Cay and Alex. The story moved quickly and the plot outcome unexpected...well, until we get to the boy and girl live happily ever after part. :) Book 4 is a Vook which I am not able to view and so I'm sorry that I'll be missing that part of the story, but not sure if it matters. Since this book was so great, I'm eagerly awaiting book 6, due out in Aug. 2011. I'll be interested to see where Ms Deveraux takes the story next.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Island in the Sky by Ernest K. Gann

Although this book is around 60 yrs old, at this time, the story is still vibrant and alive! The author, Ernest K. Gann, takes you into the heart of what being a pilot is. The comraderie, the love of flying, the risks taken and lengths they were willing to go to to save one of their own. The story is set during WWII when even airline pilots were called to duty, flying to support the war effort. When one of their own goes down in bad weather and an unknown location, they all come together to search for the crew with a "never say die" attitude. If you have a love of flying, if you understand what brings a pilot to the skies, then don't miss this book.

*PS. Many thanks to Karl Friedrich for reminding me of this great author! I'll be on the lookout for more books by Ernest K. Gann.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Coffin Dancer by Jeffery Deaver

Well, Book two in the Lincoln Rhyme series did not disappoint! I enjoyed The Coffin Dancer every bit as much as The Bone Collector. The action is fast paced and the setting was particularly interesting since I love planes and flying. Once again, the story keeps you going, thinking you know who dunit and you find out in the wouldn't really want me to tell you...would you? ;) If there's a movie of this book, I'll be watching it. I'm looking forward to the third installment in this series and can't wait! That should tell you all you really need to know!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

Coraline was a fun and entertaining quick read. The story is well-written, but if I had only read the cover notes, I would hesitate to recommend it to some children, even tho it's written for Young Adults. It's hard to feel comfortable recommending a book that has "One of the most frightening books ever written (New York Times Book Review)" at the top of the front cover. It is tense, it is imaginative, but I didn't find it frightening. I would not hesitate to recommend this book for children 12 and up...maybe younger if they enjoy scary books! LOL I haven't seen the movie and don't think I'll run out and rent it, but the book was worth the read.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Scarlett Nights by Jude Deveraux

I've enjoyed this book, once again returning to Edilean. I felt that this story had more to it than the previous two, but then again the others are building background for this one as well. I found the relationship between Sara and Mike to be fun and believable. I loved the added touch of a mystery and a bad guy who seems to know more about it than anyone else. A fun read and I'll be looking for the next in the series.

The Bone Collector by Jeffery Deaver

Wow! I can't believe I haven't discovered this author before now. This book is great and I'm not surprised there's a movie. I've probably got to see that soon. The book is practically written to be made into a movie! There are elements in it that you find in such shows as Criminal Minds, CSI, The Mentalist and Bones and yet it is completely different. I was hooked from the beginning and totally absorbed by the time things were coming together to solve the crime. I'm definitely continuing on with this series.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The World That Made New Orleans: From Spanish Silver to Congo Square by Ned Sublette

All I can say is that I wish I'd had this book before my visit to New Orleans, but, that being said, I do plan to go back. It is a wonderful history of the development of New Orleans and it's history. I look forward to re-visiting sites that impressed me the first time, but that I can now look at with a more knowledgeble eye. I learned a lot from this book, not just about the history of New Orleans, but also the world events that affected it's growth and development and why it's culture is so very different from other parts of the US. This book makes it to my keepers list! If you haven't been to New Orleans and you enjoy history, this is a good place to start, but whether you read it or not....New Orleans is a wonderful place to visit!

Wings! A Novel of WWII Flygirls by Karl Friedrich

Submerge yourself in the era of WWII and firsts for women! Wings: A Novel of WWII Flygirls is just that! I truly enjoyed this story about Sally Ketchum who finds herself enrolled in the WASP program, a government sponsored program for women to learn to fly aircraft so that men were freed up for the war effort. This story is just a small example of what women had to deal with in terms of getting the right to fly an airplane and today we can be very thankful for those who blazed the trails we take so much for granted. Being a huge fan of flying and aviation in general, I loved this book! I've read many books about flight over the years, and found this one very similar in mood to those of Richard Bach. The difference was that there was less focus on Sally's relationship with the planes and flying them, and more focus on the influences in her life. The war that women waged to even have the opportunity to fly when so many were against a "skirt" in the cockpit is just a small part of the history of women's rights, but an important one. Those men who supported them and helped train them are to be commended for giving them a chance. Sally's story of dirt-poor-Texas-farmgirl being liberated and becoming strong and independent is a strong background story as well. Her love of Tex, losing him, and then being freed from her father's heavy handed influence leaves her alone in the world and considering her background, I found her actions true to form. She has guts and a natural talent for flying. Bravo! This one is definitely on my keepers list but please do get your own! I will be reading this one again and looking for more of the same.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Days of Gold by Jude Deveraux

I'm finding this series a little confusing as a series and hope that it will all tie together in future books. The first book, Lavender Morning was set in present times, and was a great story.
In Days of Gold, the second book, we've all of a sudden jumped backwards in time to the "beginning" of the story of Angus and Edilean who founded the town of Edilean, which the series is named after. What I've found so far, is that each story could stand on it's own. The ties connecting them aren't strong. The story in Days of Gold is a fun romp with a the requisite strong and stubborn characters who simply refuse to get along. I enjoyed this book as I do any of Jude Deveraux's and would recommend it especially to lovers of historical romance.

Come Into the Water by Merlyn Janet Magner

Come Into the Water: A Survivor's Story is a very quick read about the flooding of Rapid City in 1972. As a book about a bit of local history and a commentary on surviving such a horrific natural disaster, this book is very interesting. My heart went out to the young girl who suffered through such a traumatic event and survived. My biggest question throughout was "Why didn't someone help her deal with it all?" It's very obvious throughout that Ms Magner carried the effects of the flood and her losses throughout her life. It seemed to me that had there been some kind of support system for her at the time, it might not have taken most of the rest of her life to come to terms with these events. I hope that in some way, this book has been a cathartic and cleansing tool for her to find the peace she needs.
As a story, I would have preferred more direct information about the flood with Ms. Magner's events woven into it. The letter from the former Mayor of Rapid City helped to understand just how much the flood affected the community. Would I recommend this book? I'm not sure. If you have an interest in surviving natural disasters, then yes, this would be a book for you.