Saturday, March 30, 2013

Reading Right Now:

               “Airtight” by David Rosenfelt is full of plot twists and an emphasis on the importance of family. Rosenfelt is the author of the Andy Carpenter mystery series. There are now ten books in the series with the first being “Open and Shut” and number 11 coming out in July called “Unleased.” The Carpenter series is a fantastic and funny mystery series that shouldn’t be missed. In between writing that series, Carpenter has written five stand alone novels with “Airtight” being my favorite so far. In July, Rosenfelt’s first nonfiction book is coming out about his cross-country move from California to Maine where he planned to start a dog rescue foundation (on this cross-country trip he moved both his family and 25 dogs).

On Hold Right Now:

               “Midnight at Marble Arch” by Anne Perry arrives in April and is the 28th novel in the Thomas Pitt mystery series. Perry writes Victorian mysteries that usually deal with people breaking the social mores of the time and paying a high price for it. Anne Perry was born Juliet Hulme and was convicted of participating in the murder of her best friend’s mother when they were teenagers. She changed her name when released from prison and has had tremendous success as a mystery writer since. The 1994 film “Heavenly Creatures” was based on the murder.

Take a look:

               The Independent Mystery Booksellers Association’s list of their “100 Favorite Mysteries of the 20th Century” includes these five authors whom I’ve enjoyed:

White, Randy Wayne. Sanibel Flats
Crais, Robert. The Monkey's Raincoat
Hiaasen, Carl. Tourist Season
Pronzini, Bill. Blue Lonesome
Rozan, S.J. Concourse

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Reading Right Now:

            “The Good Cop” by Brad Parks which is part of his award winning Carter Ross series. Ross, investigative reporter with the Newark Eagle-Examiner, is always in trouble with the local police, with his boss, and with the women in his life. The series is funny and suspenseful. I loved the first two books “Faces of the Gone” and “Eyes of the Innocent.” Wasn’t as thrilled with the third book, but have high hopes for “The Good Cop” which sounds really exciting and centers around a cop’s suspicious suicide.
On Hold Right Now:

            “The Boyfriend” by Thomas Perry which is a stand-alone novel and introduces Jack Till a retired cop who is now a PI. Perry is well known for his Jane Whitefield series (Jane helps people disappear). Bestselling author Thomas Perry has a good 20 novels under his belt, has won several awards, and the Independent Mystery Booksellers’ Association included “Vanishing Act” in its “100 Favorite Mysteries of the 20th Century.”

Special Interest:

Ruth Ozeki may not be a mystery writer, but she is remarkable. If you want some amazing books to read pick up “My Year of Meats” and “All Over Creation.” Her new book “A Tale for the Time Being” just came out and I can’t wait to read it. I have waited forever for her to write a new fiction book. Her other two books dealt with food production (one with the beef industry and the other genetic engineering of food).

New books In April:
Susan Wittig Albert: “Widow’s Tears.” (21st in the China Bayles series.)
David Baldacci: “The Hit.” (Second in the Will Robie series.)
Anne Perry: “Midnight at Marble Arch.” (28th in the Thomas and Charlotte Pitt series.)
Aimée & David Thurlo: “A Time of Change.” (First in the new Navajo Rez Mystery Series.)
T. Jefferson Parker:  “The Famous and the Dead.” (Book six in the Charlie Hood series.)
Jacqueline Winspear: “Leaving Everything Most Loved.” (Tenth in the Maisie Dobbs series.)

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Reading Right Now:

               “What Darkness Brings” by C.S. Harris is her 8th book in the Sebastian St. Cyr mystery series. The first was “What Angels Fear” and all have been really exciting and excellent reads. In her former life, Harris was a history professor so it should come as no surprise that this is an historical mystery series (set in Regency England).  In this latest installment, St. Cyr investigates the death of a notorious London diamond merchant in order to help his former lover whose husband is accused of the murder. St. Cyr and his new wife Hero find themselves drawn into a world where greed rules and anything can happen.


On Hold Right Now:

               Brad Parks’ “The Good Cop” is the fourth novel in the Carter Ross series. The first two were funny and thrilling. I wasn’t as thrilled with the third, but have high hopes for number four. The main character is an investigative reporter in Newark, NJ. The books are full of humor and action which turns out to be a great combination. If you want to start at the beginning of the series, read “Faces of the Gone.”

TV Action:

               If you need a little “silly,” it’s time to tune into “Psych.” The seventh season is under way, but you can always go back and watch from the beginning.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Reading Right Now:

               “Winter Break” by Merry Jones is proving a slower read for me than the first two novels in the Harper Jennings series (which started with “Summer Session”). But I still love the characters and there is certainly a lot going on. I am surprised that Jones already has the fourth novel in the series coming out in July 2013 (“Inside Eden” which sounds very exciting).  On her website, Jones says “all my books deal with some common themes. Each of them, even the humor books, focus on the unexpected aspects of life, roles and relationships. Suspense lies not just in not knowing what lurks in the cellar, but also in not knowing what lurks in the world around us, our romances, and our own subconscious minds. My characters, like the rest of us, never know what lies ahead.” An interesting viewpoint and a fine series—well worth reading.

On Hold Right Now:

               “Deadly Sting” by Jennifer Estep  just came out. I have consumed each of the Elemental Assassin novels and this is the 8th (with the 9th coming out in August). If you want to read this series, you should start with “Spider’s Bite.”  The main character is Gin Blanco, a touch, smart, strong, female character who happens to be a magical assassin. Even though she is an assassin, she manages to do a lot of good and as her character develops she is becoming more and more powerful.
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TV Action:

               I finally caught up with the first two seasons of “Game of Thrones.” I know everyone else is way ahead of me! I like the series—full of action, nudity, violence, passion, and complicated plot twists. Now I’m ready for the new season starting at the end of March, 2013 on HBO. Everyone knows by now that the series is based on George R. R. Martin’s series of books called “Song of Ice and Fire” and the first book in the series is “A Game of Thrones.” Take a look at his website to get a peak at what a unique and imaginative character Martin is (

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Reading right now:

            “The Bughouse Affair” by Marcia Muller and Bill Pronzini takes place in 1890s San Francisco and is centered around the PI firm of Carpenter and Quincannon. John Quincannon is an ex-Secret Service agent and Sabina Carpenter is a former Pinkerton operative, together they form a partnership that gets them involved with murder. This is actually the fourth in the series with John Quincannon by Bill Pronzini which started with the book “Quincannon.” These are two really great mystery authors and so far I am really enjoying “Bughouse” and may have to go back to the beginning and read the whole series.

On hold right now:

            “A Study in Revenge” by Kieran Shields came out in January and looks like fun. The problem is that it seems to be the second book in what I assume is a series with Deputy Archie Lean which takes place in Portland, Maine, in 1893. The first book is “The Truth of All Things” so I guess I’ll have to find that first and start there. It looks like the books have paranormal/occult elements and involve witches.

Other Mysterious things:

            I finally started watching “Game of Thrones” an HBO series that I’ve been hearing about for some time, but haven’t watched until this past weekend. I caught up with season one and am hooked. No wonder so many people are going back to read the series of Science Fiction books by George R. R. Martin which the series is based on.