Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Graveminder by Melissa Marr

Rebekkah Barrow grew up respecting the dead.  There was not a funeral her grandmother missed.  Now her grandmother is dead and Rebekkah finds out she is next in line of a long family tradition to become the gravemaster.  That is to put the dead to rest with finality.  In Claysville the world between the living and the dead are very close together.  If a gravemaster doesn't perform an unusual ritual the dead will stay in a limbo state hungry and thirsty for live humans.  Rebekkah finds out her grandmother was actually murdered by one of these undead and she must now take it upon herself to find the poor soul and bring them to Mr. D.  Someone is trying to mess up her plans though.  She must find out before the town gets over run with living dead.  This was a really good book.  It wasn't scary more like an odd drama.  This book is found in the science fiction section of the library and I suggest it for readers who like a little bit of supernatural in their lives.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Two for the Dough by Janet Evanovich

For a bit of light reading in the middle of the summer I chose the second novel in the Stephanie Plum series. For those of you who don't know, Stephanie is a down on her luck New Jersey girl who goes into bounty hunting because she needs the money. The people in Stephanie's life are very habit forming as you soon become attached to them. There is a marvelous push and pull that the author has created in the character's relationships that is very addictive. The complex ethnic environment is a wonderful backdrop for the crime story. In this case Stephanie searches for Kenny Mancuso, who has failed to show up for a preliminary hearing. She also searches for 25 caskets which seem like they must be somehow connected to a bunch of military weapons that have been making an appearance here and there on the East coast. Read the book if your longing for some wry humor and answers to the case.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Heartbreaker by Julie Garwood

Since this was my first Julie Garwood book, I didn't know what to expect but I really like what I got.  Heartbreaker is not a thriller but it has a good storyline with a decent amount of suspense and excitment.  This book had excellent characterization.  The dialogues were witty and even fummy at times and overall, it was a very easy and entertaining read,it had a good balance of romance and adventure.  Julie Garwood has become one of my favorite authors.

Gone Missing by Linda Castillo

Chief of Police Kate Burkholder and State Agent John Tomasetti are back on the case in Linda Castillo’s latest, Gone Missing.  Although this is very similar to her previous three books, it is not part of that series.  Castillo does tell the reader that back story of how the two meet and the progression of their relationship, so if the reader has not read the previous books it will not be confusing.

In Gone Missing, Kate and John are looking into the mysterious disappearance of Amish teens who have started to rebel against the church and are thinking about leaving.  Over the past ten years, five teens have gone missing and the number starts to increase.  Because of Kate’s Amish past, Tomasetti brings her in to consult on the cases.  As they are working, an Amish teen close to Kate’s family has disappeared in Painter’s Mill and she returns to work the case.  Soon they realize there are similarities with the two cases.

As in her past books, Castillo usually adds a twist that I don’t see coming, but then looking back she does a good job of foreshadowing.  Castillo does give more attention to the relationship of Kate and John and gives a little insight of what might come.  In the end, I liked the book and it was a good read but I wonder if she wrote this one too fast to meet the demand and popularity of the first three. 

Monday, August 6, 2012

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery, translated from the French by Alison Anderson

Perplexed by the purpose of life, precocious 12-year-old Paloma Josse has decided to end her life on her next birthday.  On the other hand, erudite Renee Michel has determined to conceal her authentic self and act the stereotypical role of a concierge.  The story unfolds in a wealthy Parisian apartment building and was told from the perspective of Renee and Paloma.  At times Paloma's "profound thoughts" in her journal entries are insightful and hilarious.
With the arrival of a new tenant, Mr. Ozu, intersecting the lives of Renee and Paloma, what happens to Renee in the end truly surprised me.  I enjoyed this book.  It celebrates friendship and reminds me to pause and see beauty whenever we can.

This novel is our Brown Bag selection for September.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Gone Missing

Rumspringer is the time of year when Amish youth can experience the outside world before becoming baptized.  soon young Amish girls start dissappearing without a trace.  The carefree fun is over and soon fear runs through the community like a contagion.  It's up to police chief Kate Burkholder to try to find the girls before it is too late. This was a very gripping story and quite a page  turner.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

One Thousand Gifts: A Dare To Live Fully Right Where You Are By Ann Voskamp

Ann Voskamp has witnessed many tragedies in her life, the death of her little sister, her Father's bitterness and her Mother's struggle with overwhelming grief and depression to name a few. She has settled for a life that is marked with discontent and discouragement. Although she is married and has children she wonders is this all there is? A friend challenged her to find joy in the mundane, simple everyday tasks of daily life, to chronicle one thousand gifts. To live fully and joyfully no matter what the circumstances. This is the start of her spiritual journey from grace, to gratitude, to joy. Beautifully written with many scriptual references this book is a life changer! One of the best books I have ever read, I heartily recommend it! Read slowly and savor every word.