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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
3/3/18 11:22 P

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Use of Force by Brad Thor 4*
A dead terrorist washes ashore in Italy after trying to sneak into Europe in a boatload or refugees that sank in a storm. Terrorism is getting bolder and deadlier in Europe and America, so covert CIA ops are dispatched to trace this dead terrorist to the leaders and stop them by any means necessary because clearly something big and horrible is in the works. No need to do your aerobics on the day you read this book because it will keep your heart pumping as it breathlessly races from danger to danger. there was a weaker subplot about murder and back-stabbing among the CIA back in Virginia as a shift in leadership is about to occur, but it was boring and I skimmed over those parts.

A Death in the Family by James Agee 4*
The parts of this book that were in regular script were indeed a magnificent story about a death in the family and the mourners coming to grips with reality, and how this new reality and their religious beliefs, or lack thereof, can be reconciled. The non-italicized narrative was a deeply human and touching 5* book. Sadly, since the book was cobbled together posthumously from the author's notes, the book also included a lot of junk printed in italics that did not go with the flow of the story and their inclusion, instead of enhancing, diminished the book. I noticed that the positive reviews in Goodreads praised the former but ignored the latter, which so badly mutilated the flow of the narrative. A note in the beginning of the novel said that the editor had no idea where Agee intended to place this junk--I think I know, the trash can. The story is seen through the eyes of six-year-old Rufus. Sometimes he's a confused little kid and at other times an exceptionally mature narrator who explains his insights to us in a decidedly not-six-year-old voice, especially at the ending, a magnificent, profound ending, but hardly the cognitive processes of a little kid.


Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
3/3/18 11:20 P

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The Singing Tree by Kate Seredy 3*
This sequel to The Good Master was better than the original, but I still did not enjoy it. Obnoxious Kate and all her idiotic squealing were more than I could bear. Although set in WWI, this was published 1939 as a pacifist message before WWII, which now appears naive and stupid because we know how well those attempts by pacifists to cater to and appease Hitler are going to work. Great illustrations, though.

The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith 3*
A supermodel's plunge from her high-rise balcony is ruled a suicide, but her brother hires a private investigator to check out info that doesn't add up that the police did not diligently pursue. I thought I was going to like this book more than I did. It started well, I liked private eye Strike and was wishing him success, and for most of the book I thought the mystery and suspense were being masterly developed...and then we got to that pitifully weak ending. I realize that the author was trying to give the mystery a surprise twist, but it really didn't work for me. It seemed a shame to spend so much time setting the stage for what amounted to a big flop.

One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus 4*
This murder mystery inspired by The Breakfast Club started with a cool idea and continued as an engrossing read. The title, however, isn't true--more than one is lying, which complicates arriving at the truth.

Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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JULIEA7201's Photo JULIEA7201 Posts: 17,074
3/1/18 8:01 A

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Thankless in Death (In Death, Book 37) by J. D. Robb *****

How does this author do it? Anything she writes, I love to read! :) @ANGELGRLKAS29

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2/28/18 12:50 P

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JulieA7201 - I LOVE, love, love the JD Robb series! I want to get them all for my kindle...

(º•.¸(¨*•.¸ \/¸.•*¨)¸.•º) (º•.¸(¨*•.¸ \/¸.•*¨)¸.•º)
«.•° «.•° «.•° Kristen °•.» °•.» °•.» °•.»
(¸.•º(¸.•¨* \/*¨•.¸)º•.¸) (º•.¸(¨*•.¸ \/¸.•*¨)¸.•º)

"The difference between who you are and who you want to be, is what you do!"

"If you speak when you are angry, you'll make the greatest speech you'll ever regret."


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2/27/18 9:37 A

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Summer Sisters: A Novel by Judy Blume ****

This was a good read, makes a good summer read for the beach. I found it got a bit dragged out and I did not like the turn the story took. But it did end well and left the reader wondering. It was a good portrayal of differing families and their values. It also presented the feeling of really not fitting in with the family you call your own.


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2/27/18 9:32 A

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A Stranger in the House by Shari Lapena *****

This was a suspenseful novel with a surprise ending. It is much like Gone Girl. It has many twists and turns, leaving you guessing at times. I admit I did not expect that ending.

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2/27/18 9:27 A

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Messenger By Moonlight by Stephanie Grace Whitson *****
I enjoy most of the books this author has written. She is a Christian author and most of her stories take place in Nebraska. I find myself want ing to visit the areas in which the stories occur. This story is about the Pony Express. But it is also about early life in Nebraska when towns were beginning. This would be historical fiction. The story is well woven in the early history of this time period in Nebraska, or the midwest.

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2/27/18 9:21 A

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The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls. **** This had been on my wish list for a while in our online library. I am always a bit skeptical when authors remember so much detail of their childhood. This is no exception but an worthwhile read. I would like to see the movie made from this novel. The beginning chapters had humorous parts such as moving the piano into the house and going right on through. The nomadic lifestyle probably mirrors more lives than we realize. When her parents become homeless and choose their lifestyle, I found a connection to a family member with this same mindset. Glad I waited for this book.

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JULIEA7201's Photo JULIEA7201 Posts: 17,074
2/25/18 11:37 A

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Shall We Tell the President? (Kane and Abel Book 3 by Jeffrey Archer ****

Great author, but this book is probably my least favorite although still good. Partially my fault as I read "Kane & Abel" several times MANY years ago. Awesome read, but I don't know how I missed this one. :)

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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
2/22/18 5:05 P

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The Halloween Tree by Ray Bradbury 4*
Eight boys out trick-or treating see their friend Pipkin snatched by Death. Mr. Mountshroud of the Halloween tree, hopes they can still ransom Pipkin from Death and leads them through the history of Halloween as they search for Pipkin and see how people from many cultures and ages tried to understand and cope with death. Each boy encounters some version of his own costume during their travels and glimpses of Pipkin, always beyond their reach, until they meet in Mexico. Will Death accept the ransom and allow Pipkin to return home to the living? When I started this little spook story I had no idea that it would turn into such an amazing, clever, and well-developed tale. It is a fast-moving quest with plenty of entertainment value and, if you chose, a lot of interesting points to ponder.
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Edited by: LADYCALICO at: 2/22/2018 (17:08)
Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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2/22/18 9:12 A

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The Summer That Made Us: A Novel by Robyn Carr ****

Family dynamics and the tragedies and successes that make us who we are. :)

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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
2/21/18 11:31 P

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Bloody Jack by Louis A. Meyer 5*
I found this tale of a London orphan girl, who hires on as a ship's boy to find three hots and a cot, to be an engrossing YA adventure....but not for too Y an A since the story of our young salt Jacky gets rather salty about the seamen's lusts and Jacky's need to hide her changing body as puberty overtakes her while at sea. Also, the author does not hesitate to kill off characters. Jacky is rarely out of danger, surviving plague, starvation, and slum criminals only to risk death at sea. Although it is often said she who was born to hang need never worry about being drowned, we are never sure that Jacky couldn't manage to find a way to do both. Altogether a most exciting tale that is hard to put down until the very end.

Goodbye to Berlin by Christopher Isherwood 4*
This is a collection of six stories based on the author's life in Berlin from 1930 to 1933, often focusing, in a detached way like the camera he purports to be, on the decadence and decay of Berlin's people, politics, poverty, and entertainment, showing glimpses of what sad humanity remains behind the facades. The "based on" is where I have trouble with it. I would have preferred if he had kept it true, rather than as a hybrid that is neither here nor there. The middle four stories were heavy in character studies of people he knew, maybe, in Berlin and were sandwiched between two stories entitled "A Berlin Diary," which I personally found to be the best parts of the book. The last Berlin Diary sees the rise of the Nazis, and we know that this era of depravity and those people herein are soon to be swept away into an even more putrid sewer.


Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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2/20/18 8:09 P

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The Apartment (Kindle Single) by Debbie Macomber ****

Short quick read. Pretty typical for this author but I need something iike this after reading a book from the In Death series. :)

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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
2/20/18 1:35 P

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The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory 3*
The story of the Boleyn family's involvement with the Court of Henry VIII is told by the elder daughter Mary, who for some odd reason the author decided to make the younger daughter--that should have been a warning that this Historical Harlequin would be historical fiction without the "historical." It might more accurately be titled Keeping up with the Boleyns or Real Housewives of Middlesex Shire. I can appreciate an author's attempts to breathe life, emotion, and humanity into history but making them stock soap opera characters just didn't do it for me. It also had anachronisms like the king threatening to send a courtier to the crusades 300 years after they were over and Mary quoting a line from Shakespeare 30 years before his birth. It was rambling and repetitious but still an entertaining piece of fiction, just nothing special.

A Fighting Man of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs 4*
I needed a book set on another planet for the Pop Sugar Challenge and found this one to be relatively highly rated on Goodreads. At first I could not imagine why since it initially seemed to be just a bunch of "same old" that has been recycled over and over in other Burroughs's novels, then he suddenly surprised me by working in some unique and original science fiction that takes the stale old stuff in new directions. The Barsoom Series is not a favorite of mine, but this was one of the better ones IMHO.

Edited by: LADYCALICO at: 2/21/2018 (23:38)
Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
2/19/18 5:16 P

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Time Cat by Lloyd Alexander 5*
Such a delightful children's book--picture Peabody and Sherman, if Peabody was a cat and their time travels through history, although humorous, were played more for life lessons than comedy. Gareth the talking cat may not have the magic to provide Jason with nine lives, but he can provide him with nine time-travel adventures from 2700 BC Egypt to 1775 AD America, as field trips to teach Jason what he needs to grow into a better, wiser, kinder adult. This book has the feeling of being written by a cat-lover, for cat-lovers, who believes that everything you need to know about life you can learn from your cat. Surprise, cats were very much on the side of the American colonists in their struggle for independence.

The Rabbi's Cat by Joann Sfar 5*
This may be a marvelously illustrated graphic novel, but it is not a children's story. It is broken into three stories set in the family of a sweet Sephardic Jewish Rabbi in 1930's Algeria in which the cat ponders issues of philosophy, theology, and observations (not usually kind ones) of humanity. I found the first story, that introduces the characters and sets the stage, the sweetest, and the third story, where our heretofore sweet, understanding, compassionate Rabbi tags along on his daughter's honeymoon to Paris while in a jealous snit, rather poignant.

Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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2/19/18 5:04 P

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Calculated in Death (In Death, Book 36) by J. D. Robb *****



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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
2/19/18 5:03 P

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The Summer of the Barshinskeys by Diane Pearson 4*
This was an unusual and almost extraordinary novel about the lifelong intertwining relationship of two neighboring families of early 20th Century farm workers--one with a hard-working, moral, respectable father and the other with an erratic, drunken, abusive one. The first segment of the book, as told by a little girl, was riveting, but the rest of the book did not always live up to its early promise. Not all of the characters were as well drawn and realistic as others. When long sections of the novel were centered around the weaker, less realistic characters, the story became, well, weaker and less realistic. The parts about the friendship of the two little girls and the estranged, neglected little Ivan made the book worthwhile.

Voices of Summer by Diane Pearson 5*
One of the author's later novels, this was more subtle and character driven--but what extraordinarily rich but flawed characters! A Viennese opera director, retiring to his vacation home in a mountain resort village, is talked into leading a local opera company headlined by another resident, an unemployable divo whose magnificent voice and good looks are eclipsed by his thorough rottenness and erratic behavior. They can make do with elderly has-beens and young novices in the background if they have quality leads, however, the jealous, cruel star drives off any female lead with enough talent to threaten his star-power. Now, no one will accept that opening, except an insecure middle-aged frump, trying for a come-back after over 20 years of obscurity. Thus springs an unusual and theatrical, operatic tale of love and hate in a quiet Alpine farming village.

Edited by: LADYCALICO at: 2/19/2018 (17:04)
Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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2/18/18 3:54 P

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A Daughter's Place by C.J. Carmichael ****


"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." Walt Disney


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2/18/18 1:28 P

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Second Chance Girl: A Modern Fairy Tale Romance (Happily Inc) by Susan Mallery ****

Sweet story line. Love this series as I did her Fools Gold series.

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2/17/18 11:54 P

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Severe Clear - Stuart Woods - 3.5 stars

Another in the Stone Barrington series. A bit more suspenseful than the more recent ones I have read. A slow start and you knew it had to end up okay but enjoyed.

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2/17/18 11:14 A

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Sisters Like Us (Mischief Bay) by Susan Mallery ****

Feel good read with a happy ending had by all. Not real life but this is why I read fiction! :)

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COVEGIRL1's Photo COVEGIRL1 Posts: 13,983
2/16/18 7:51 P

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I'm so glad you liked it, Julie!


"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." Walt Disney


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2/16/18 11:20 A

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen series Book 1) by Joanne Fluke ****

@COVEGIRL1 Thanks for pointing me to a new author/series (for me)! I enjoyed this one and look forward to reading book 2. I doubt I will make any of the recipes either, but I did have to pin a similar one for the chocolate covered cherry delights-intriguing!

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JULIEA7201's Photo JULIEA7201 Posts: 17,074
2/14/18 8:13 A

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Someone to Wed (A Westcott Novel) by Mary Balogh ****

The 1st 2 in the series had a bit of a better story line. This one started out a little slow, but the last half was good. :)

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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
2/13/18 11:27 A

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Oops, posting under wrong thread!

Edited by: LADYCALICO at: 2/19/2018 (17:08)
Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


 current weight: 177.0 
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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
2/13/18 11:03 A

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Csardas by Diane Pearson 5*
This novel centers on two beautiful, wealthy, half-Jewish sisters and their suitors as WWI, the Depression, WWII, and the Communist take-over sweep across Hungary. The rhythms of this great sweeping saga are much like the passionate Csardas that I remember from my childhood. The men and women start separately, performing complicated steps, the men leaping like stags in a display of strength and prowess and the ladies, gracefully twirling, bedecked in their finest embroidery. The partners move together and join as couples into a joyous dance, but the music and dancing progressively increase in intensity, some must leave the floor while others manage to last to the end, and how often we are surprised by who will endure and who will not. And when the music stops, what of the weary couple who persevered to the end...love, maybe?
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Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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2/11/18 4:50 P

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"The Night Sister" by Jennifer McMahon

4 stars

Family secrets set in a motel that spans 3 generations of intrigue and horror in a small Vermont town.

I always like the books on family secrets. This was a good one!









"Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment." -- Lao Tzu






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2/11/18 3:31 P

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Someone to Hold (A Westcott Novel) by Mary Balogh *****

2nd book in this series. On to the 3rd - so happy!

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2/10/18 1:41 P

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Never Never (Harriet Blue) by James Patterson, Candice Fox ****

First time for me reading this author. Story line was good and I liked how it was written in short chapters. Ending was kind of predictable, but still had a good lead in to the next in the series,

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LADYCALICO's Photo LADYCALICO Posts: 7,775
2/9/18 12:33 P

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Snowflower and the Secret Fan by Lisa See 4*
This novel follows the lives of two 19th century little Chinese girls from neighboring Hunan villages who are contracted as laotongs, a deep lifelong promise of friendship because they match in eight essential ways. On the plus side it contains lots of interesting stuff about women's lot in rural 19th century China, keen observations about human relationships, and beautiful prose. On the negative side it is as dismal as a foggy midnight in a miasmic swamp.


Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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2/9/18 10:11 A

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The Abalone Shell: Sea Glass Cove **** Good read


"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." Walt Disney


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2/8/18 11:51 P

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Delusion in Death (In Death, Book 35) by J. D. Robb *****

I love the way she develops characters. 35 books and not at all bored or repetitive. The topic of this one revolves around a possible terrorist attack(s). But the bigger questions is what makes us, nurture or nature?

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2/8/18 11:49 A

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Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate 4*
Sadly, this book was written in a split narrative, alternating annoyingly between two different stories, a style I usually hate, because I have yet to read one where both stories are equally good. If the two stories are unequal then the annoying part is every time the good story is interrupted with the less good story...in this case a really badly done story. So here we have a 5* story and characters, devastating in its content, emotion, and suspense alternating with a flat, trite, stale, 2* Harlequin romance with stock characters, implausible coincidences, and a bunch of "who cares" clap-trap about wedding planning, politics, and stereotypes of Southern mamas. Seriously, wouldn't this have been in every way a greater book if the author had ditched every bit about Mary Sue and Gary Stu...er, Avery and Trent?

Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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2/7/18 5:46 P

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“Dark Tide” by Stephen Puleo
6 stars

The account of the Boston Molasses Flood of 1919. I grew up in the Boston area and don’t recall ever hearing about the flood. When I read about the flood recently, I was intrigued and needed to buy this book. A great read and I learned a lot about Boston in the early 1900’s.









"Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment." -- Lao Tzu






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2/7/18 11:19 A

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The Year of Less: How I Stopped Shopping, Gave Away My Belongings, and Discovered Life Is Worth More Than Anything You Can Buy in a Store

by Cait Flanders

6 stars :)

Such an amazing book! I loved her story and her self exploration in her attempt to understand why she bought things and the triggers she identified that caused her to spend. This is so much more than a book on not shopping or decluttering. It's about mindfulness and learning what is most important to you and living it out. It's about saying no to patterns that don't align with what is important. It's about llearning and growing and maturing to living the life you want. Excellent,excellent read!

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2/6/18 1:01 P

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The Good Master by Kate Seredy 3*
This children's book is like a Hungarian "Little House..." in which Pop is trying to make Laura into a psychopathic serial killer. I fail to see the humor of adults neglecting to deal with a child's oppositional and mean behaviors that endanger others, although maybe kids might enjoy it. On the plus side, when the monstrous Kate almost kills herself after so many attempts to kill others, she eventually learns the hard way to become someone who bears a slight resemblance to a human being, so the last few chapters were good. Too bad that the adults didn't try to save Kate the grief by teaching her these important life lessons the easier and safer way. The illustrations were magnificent.

Caleb's Crossing by Geraldine Brooks 4*
Caleb's Crossing should have been titled Bethia's Bio. I expected a fascinating story about a real life Native American torn between two cultures, and although that was part of it and certainly the best part, the majority of the book was about the narrator, Bethia, whose story was just the same old "women had it so hard in patriarchal societies!" message churned out in thousands of books and Bethia's trite portion of the novel added nothing that raised it above the common lot. I might have enjoyed this book much more if I wasn't left feeling like the victim of a bait and switch scam. The author did appear to make an effort not to play fast and loose with what little is known about the real Caleb Cheeshahteaumuck, so she had to add a lot of filler. I just wish that the filler actually added something tastier to the meat.

Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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SKINNYIN2010's Photo SKINNYIN2010 SparkPoints: (28,265)
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2/6/18 11:25 A

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Unorthodox: The Scandalous Rejection of My Hasidic Roots
by Deborah Feldman
3 stars


Interesting story of a girl who grew up in a strict Jewish community but left in her early 20s. I am not Jewish, so I was unfamiliar with several of the words, customs, and religious ceremonies mentioned in the book. It felt a little like outside peeking into a house window and watching people and interactions and not being able to understand quite what is going on. But overall I understood the author's sentiment of what she perceived as an overbearing and strict way of life, and the need to be free and be her own boss. However, after reading more about this author online, it turns out many of the details this book are apparently inaccurate, exaggerated, and even fabricated. I understand the way she may have perceived things happen may not have been accurate, but with this information in mind, I feel the story was a bit sullied. And although at the end she felt free, I couldn't help but feel a little sad that she left her spiritual beliefs to get that feeling of freedom. Surely not all practicing Jewish people live the way she was raised, so why not keep her beliefs but maintain her freedom as one not living in the community? Anyways, I found this to be an interesting look into the traditional Jewish lifestyle, but knowing about the author's dishonesty just left me with a bad taste in my mouth.

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2/5/18 3:47 P

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emoticon Book 3 of 24 challenge for 2018.
Stain of Guilt - Brandilyn Collins
Christian Thriller - Book 2 in Hidden Faces Series.
For twenty years a killer eluded capture, now his face is being drawn by a forensic artist to be shown on a TV show.



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2/4/18 5:50 A

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Darktown by Thomas Mullen.

Post WW2 but pre Civil Rights, Atlanta Police Department hires 8 black police officers but is still segregated in ways hard to imagine today. This mystery tells the story of two of them.

"The aim of life is to live, and to live means to be aware, joyously, drunkenly, serenely, divinely aware." Henry Miller.

The best vitamin for making friends: B1.



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2/3/18 6:19 P

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Family Tree - Barbara Delinsky 4 stars

A baby is born and she doesn't look like her parents. Enjoyable book with some interesting twists - at the end I still wanted to know what comes next.



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2/3/18 4:48 P

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Lord John and the Private Matter by Diana Gabaldon 4*
I needed to find a book for the Popsugar Reading Challenge with an LGBTQ+ protagonist and was delighted to find this historical spy thriller/whodunnit to fill the bill. It proved to have a clever, well-developed plot and characters with clues popping up in a way that further muddied, rather than clarified, the solution whenever Lord John thought he was on the right track. Meanwhile, Lord John was troubled by a pressing personal matter, little realizing that it was intimately involved in his murder/espionage investigation. However, it committed one of my pet peeves in mystery novels--when the cornered guilty party nicely explains in detail all the yet unsolved mystery. Poirot and Sherlock never needed the villain to spell out the solution!

Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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2/2/18 11:41 A

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The Hard to Catch Mercy by William P. Baldwin III 5*
I was seeking a book by a "local author" for the Popsugar Reading Challenge and serendipitously wandered across this brilliant gem of a Bildungsroman. It is 14 tales and an epilogue as told by young Willie T. Allson, all of which build upon each other as answers are found for the mysteries--or were they, since the answers came from the liars, crazies, cons, senile, superstitious, or people who just have peculiar ways of viewing things? The paranormal hovers around the edges of these stories--or does it, since Willie T. filters his perceptions through the Lowcountry "haint" tales of his elderly nanny? As another reviewer put it "An epic tale of Southern myth, mystery, and mayhem!" Tales well told, such as this, are the reason that I read.

Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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2/2/18 9:15 A

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Celebrity in Death (In Death, Book 34) by J. D. Robb *****

Another good one!!! Money power...

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2/1/18 7:58 P

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder by Joanne Fluke **** I love Joanne Fluke's mysteries. Lots of cookie recipes, which I never make. LOL! There was a bonus novella, Candy for Christmas. I liked it, too.


"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." Walt Disney


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2/1/18 4:20 P

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The Child Finder, by Rene Tenfold. *****

I could not put this book down. I enjoyed the author's writing style - a mystery that parallels her own experiences, going back and forth in time as the investigator has this unusual knack in finding children and reflects back at her own life, a survivor who escaped. She puts clues together that have escaped others all the while remembering more and more her own life before being rescued. I want a sequel so badly! I looked for other novels by this author hoping she had written similar books but none of them captured my interest like this one.

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2/1/18 4:13 P

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Catherine: Little House revisited *****
LOVED this novel. I hesitated to check it out for a while. I was afraid the author would take many liberties with Laura Ingalls Wilder's stories. But it paralleled Little House on the Prairie, yet more chronologically. It is beautifully written adult novel, realistically portraying this move west as her mother might have experienced.

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2/1/18 1:34 P

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Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman 3*
I was rather disappointed in this book. The story of the apocalypse that almost was had some quotable lines but really was not my style of humor. The story was quite dragged out, so I was glad to just to get it over with.

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein 5*
I gave this book five stars because it was so engrossing, the author had obviously done her research, and it added a depth of humanity to what it must have been like to be a young person called upon to give your all when the fate of the world was at stake and your generation was on the front line that had to save it. The weak point of the book was that the Gestapo officer just overlooked her rambling out her life story, hoping that eventually she would slip in some of the useful intelligence that she had agreed to give them. In spite of that "Seriously!" implausibility element, it was a well-crafted plot and I would highly recommend it as great characters and story, well written, even if the format made no sense.

Lola--Eastern Standard Time
And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
"If you trust in yourself and believe in your dreams and follow your star...you'll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren't so lazy." Terry Pratchett


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1/31/18 12:28 P

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emoticon Can’t believe it’s the end of January already.

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1/31/18 11:04 A

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Here we are! This is where you can list the books that you finished in February

All posts need book title, author, and stars; 0 being the worst and 6 being very special.

I would encourage you to comment on books that others have read by sending them a Sparkmail. This topic is just to list books read and finished in February 2018 for the team.

This is a thread where we list all the books that we read during the month of February and rate them by the system listed below. Please note that you need to list title, author, and your rating for it to be counted. Also, please give a description of the book and how it appealed to you. This is a great way to find new books and authors that you might be interested in. Everyone is welcome to join.

If you started a book in January (or any prior month), but finish in February, it counts for February.

DO NOT list books STARTED; only books FINISHED. Include title, author and rating.

Rereads count, audios count, electronics count. Our minimum word count is 25,000.

Book Ratings:

0 stars - Fit for only lining birdcages.
1 star - Agent was better salesman than author was writer.
2 stars - Some parts had promise.
3 stars - Solid read in its genre. Take it on plane.
4 stars - Better than average. Don't lose it on the plane.
5 stars - Recommended. One of the top 10% of books in its genre.
6 stars - Strongly recommended. Beg, Borrow, Buy, or Steal It.

Jo Ann
Starfish - (CST)
Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still. - Chinese Proverb



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