Saturday, April 24, 2010


Title: Never look away

Author: Linwood Barclay

Publisher: Delacorte Press

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-553-80717-2

Series or stand-alone: Stand-alone

Setting:Promise Falls, NY

1st Sentence:

"He's really out of it."


This book comes with a lot of twists and turns that rock the boat with every chapter. I'm hesitant to write too much about it for fear of giving away too much as I've been known to do. The book starts out in an amusement park where a young child goes missing. He is soon recovered but then mom disappears -- and she doesn't come back. If you're not afraid of reading more about the book, look here. I love this website for reviews and information on books, and this one had me giggling.

To whom would I recommend this: Fans of any kind of domestic terror (love this term) book - readers of Mary Higgins Clark, Erica Spindler, PJ Parrish and the like.

My rating: 4/5


Title: Not as crazy as I seem

Author: George Harrar

Publisher: Graphia

Copyright: 2003

ISBN: 978-0-618-49480-4

Series or stand-alone: YA stand-alone

Setting: Belford, MA

1st Sentence:

"Hello, Devon. I'm Dr. Wasserman."


Devon, a 15-year-old, has just moved to Belford and begins school mid-year at a new and prestigious prep school. However, his OCD, his compulsion to sort things into groups of four and keep things near cause him problems and he needs to get to the root of the problem before it becomes a real problem in the long run.

As a sufferer of OCD, I thought this book accurately portrayed someone with the affliction. I could relate to many of the things Devon did and the feelings he had when someone tried to quash his tendencies.

Upon preparing this blog entry, I enjoyed finding out the author resides in Wayland, MA. I was a nanny in neigboring Weston for several years back in my younger days.

To whom would I recommend this: People interested in OCD. Tweens and teens who read any kind of book about differences.

My rating: 3.5/5

March #2 - RAIN DOGS

Title: Rain dogs

Author: Sean Doolittle

Publisher: Bantam Dell

Copyright: 2006

ISBN: 0-440-24281-9

Series or stand-alone: Stand-alone

Setting: Valentine, NE

1st Sentence:

Coleman's Landing
The offices of Tyler & Tyler sat next to a taxidermy shop with a stuffed coyote in the window.


When Tom Coleman's grandfather dies, he is left a river resort in Nebraska. Tom, who is fighting his own demons, sees it as an opportunity to start anew. But when he moves to Valentine, he has a run-in with an old flame, finds himself in the middle of an illegal drug operation and all he wants to do is just get by. Personally, I liked SAFER better, but I enjoyed this book.

To whom would I recommend this:
Any of my mystery/suspense readers. I think readers of James Lee Burke and Tony Hillerman would like this book.
My rating:3.5/5


Title: The murderer's daughters

Author: Randy Susan Meyers

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-0-312-57698-1

Series or stand-alone: Stand-alone

Setting: Brooklyn, the Boston area

1st Sentence:

July 1971
I wasn't surprised when Mama asked me to save her life.


The book opens with a murder that changes the life of the two girls featured throughout the book. Merry and Lulu must adjust to life without both parents and this book chronicles how the early life events affected each of them. I thought it was a very satisfying read.

To whom would I recommend this: Mystery readers and patrons who like a more literary style of writing. People who like a great debut novel.

My rating: 4/5

Saturday, April 17, 2010

My March sucked!

March was a very hard month for me. I got very little reading done, although my posts for March are forthcoming.
The first part of March I lost my nephew, a police officer in Prince George's County, MD. Because his death was in the line of duty, it was the whole shebang of a funeral...very moving, very emotional, very draining. His crew out there is holding several fundraisers in his memory for the Fraternal Order of Police #89 and the FALLEN OFFICER MEMORIAL FUND and for both COPS and HEROES. They have been very good and generous to Tommy's widow and parents, as they were to us when we were out there. Please take a look and donate if you shall.

On the day we returned from Maryland, I lost my grandma after her very long fight with Alzheimer's. I will be doing my annual Alzheimer's walk this year. In years past, the walk was in her honor. This year, it will be in her memory.

When it rains, it pours. Two deaths in one week's time was almost more than I could bear. I won't be attending any more funerals this year. I don't think I have another one in me. I have also lost my zeal for reading. But I'll find it again; books have always been some of my best friends, something I could always rely on. That's something my grandma taught me very early in life. I love you, lady and miss you more than you can ever know.

February #7 - GONE

Title: Gone

Author: Lisa McMann

Publisher: Simon Pulse

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-1-4169-7918-0

Series or stand-alone: #3

Setting: Fieldridge, MI

1st Sentence:

June 2006
It's like she can't breathe anymore, no matter what she does.


This book rounds out the trilogy that included WAKE and FADE. Janie is a dreamcatcher - she falls into other's dreams when they sleep. Raised by a single mother, she just found her biological father and finds that he is dying. She must come to terms with that, who she is and what she will become.

To whom would I recommend this: 13 and up (language)

My rating: 4 Stars


Title: Saving Cee Cee Honeycutt

Author: Beth Hoffman

Publisher: Viking

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-670-02139-0

Series or stand-alone: Stand-alone

Setting: Willoughby, Ohio & Savannah, GA

1st Sentence:

Momma left her red satin shoes in the middle of the road.


When Cecelia's mother dies, her dad sends her to Savannah to live with her great-aunt where she learns about the love of family and acceptance. It's 1967 or 1968 and the Southern women are an odd lot, but she falls in love with them and they with her.

To whom would I recommend this:
Just about anyone who reads. This was one of my favorite books so far this year.

My rating: 5 stars


Title: Lockdown: Escape from Furnace

Author: Alexander Gordon Smith

Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-0-374-32491-9

Series or stand-alone: #1

Setting: Furnace Penitentiary

1st Sentence:

If I stopped running I was dead.


Summary from book:
When 14-year-old Alex is framed for murder, he becomes an inmate of the Furnace Penitentiary, where brutal inmates and sadistic guards reign, boys who disappear in the middle of the night sometimes return weirdly altered, and escape might just be possible.

To whom would I recommend this: Hesitant readers in the 13-17 age range and even those who are fans of science fiction books. It was a strange altered reality quality to it.
My rating: 4.5 stars

February #4 - I, ALEX CROSS

Title: I, Alex Cross

Author: James Patterson

Publisher: Little, Brown & Co.

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-0-316-01878-4

Series or stand-alone: #15

Setting: Washington, D.C.

1st Sentence:

Fire and Water
Hannah Willis was a second year law student at Virginia, and everything that lay ahead of her seemed bright and promising - except, of course, that she was about to die in these dark, gloomy , dismal woods.


Alex's niece is found murdered and the hunt for her killer begins. It turns into a chase of depravity as a sex club is prominent and it involves heavy hitters in Washington. Some surprise twists through the book lead to a happy ending.


Title: Why my third husband will be a dog

Author: Lisa Scottoline

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-0-312-58748-2

Series or stand-alone: Non-fiction

1st Sentence:

Quote: A woman is like a tea bag. You never know how strong she is until she's in hot water. - Eleanor Roosevelt


This book includes funny stories, scenes from the author's real life - everything from going braless and motherhood to healthcare, failed marriages and getting along with an aging, crazy mother.

Some are quite funny, some poignant...

February #2 - NOT MY DAUGHTER

Title: Not my daughter

Author: Barbara Delinsky

Publisher: Doubleday

Copyright: 2010

ISBN: 978-0-385-52498-8

Series or stand-alone: Stand-alone

Setting:Zaganack, ME

1st Sentence:

Susan Tate never saw it coming.


In sleepy Zaganack, ME where everything is PC (Perry & Cass) Susan is the principal of the high school. When her teenage daughter drops the bomb that she's pregnant, Susan is disappointed. When she finds out that it's a pact involving her daughter's two best friends, she mortified - because that type of behavior is definitely not PC - and town people try to make things very difficult for Susan and her daughter.

I would recommend this book to patrons who enjoy Jodi Picoult; I read a lot of similarities and it's part of the reason I've read a couple of Delinsky books.

February #1 - STILL LIFE

Title: Still life

Author: Joy Fielding

Publisher: Atria Books

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-1-4165-8527-5

Series or stand-alone: Stand-alone

Setting: South Philadelphia

1st Sentence:

Less than an hour before the car slammed into her at a speed of almost fifty miles an hour, throwing her ten feet into the air, breaking nearly every bone in her body and cracking her head against the hard concrete, Casey Marshall was sitting in the elegant narrow dining room of Southwark, one of South Philadelphia's more popular white-tablecloth restaurants, finishing lunch with her two closest friends and stealing glances at the beautiful, secluded courtyard behind their heads.


Casey is in a car accident and finds herself in the hospital "locked in" - aware of her surroundings but unable to communicate that. Everyone around her thinks she is in a coma. And some feel safe in talking and she learns many interesting things -- like the cause of her accident and why!

January #7 - WHEN YOU REACH ME

Title: When you reach me

Author: Rebecca Stead

Publisher: Wendy Lamb Books

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-0-385-73742-5

Series or stand-alone: Stand-alone

Setting: New York City

1st Sentence:

So Mom got the postcard today.


Summary from the book:
As her mother prepares to be a contestant of the 1970s television game show, "The 20,000 Pyramid," a twelve-year-old New York City girl tries to make sense of a series of mysterious notes received from an anonymous source that seems to defy the laws of time and space.

This book was the Newbery Award winner for 2010 and it referenced A WRINKLE IN TIME many times.

My favorite thing about the book was how each chapter was titled and written including something from the $20,000 PYRAMID, for example THINGS YOU KEEP A SECRET.


Title: Lights out tonight

Author: Mary Jane Clark

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

Copyright: 2006

ISBN: 978-0-312-32317-2

Series or stand-alone: Stand-alone

Setting:Warrenstown, MA

1st Sentence:

Sunday, July 30
It was just a few feet from the front door of the convenience store to the shiny, new car parked in the spot marked "handicapped."


Caroline Enright is a reporter covering a new play that is opening where her stepdaughter is working as an apprentice. When the lead character goes missing, everybody's a suspect.

This was a good, quick read and typical in style to Clark's previous books.

January #5 - CANDOR

Title: Candor

Author: Pam Bachorz

Publisher: Egmont

Copyright: 2009

ISBN: 978-1-60684-012-2

Series or stand-alone: Stand-alone

Setting: Candor, FL

1st Sentence:



From the book:

For a fee, "model teen" Oscar Banks has been secretly - and selectively - sabotaging the subliminal messages that program the behavior of the residents of Candor, Florida, until his attraction to a rebellious new girl threatens to expose his subterfuge.

Kind of like THE STEPFORD WIVES but for/with kids. This was a fun book that could have you looking at your neighbor kinda funny.