For the past few weeks, I’ve seen this meme lurking on several other book blogs I visit and I’ve thought–next Monday, I really need to play along. Then it’s Tuesday and I find myself going “D’oh! Maybe next week!”
So, here we go. It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?
What I read last week
14 by J.T. Ellison
A serial killer mystery set in Nashville, Tennessee. I currently live near Nashville and work downtown, so it’s fun to have real-world settings be used in the novel and to go, “Oh, I’ve been there” or “Oh, I know where that is.” The novel worked fairly well, but it fell into the trap of trying to be too much of everything for everyone. It has a serial killer novel coupled with touches of a romance novel (it’s not a bodice ripper, but it does have the scorned ex- and our heroine is trying to solve the mystery before her wedding.) There were a few twists and turns I saw coming before they are revealed in the story, but overall I found it a compelling enough page turner to keep me interested until the end. And interested to pick up another book by Ellison in the near future.
Doctor Who: Castrovalva by Chistopher H. Bidmead (audio book, read by Peter Davison)
It’s a straight-forward adaptation of the television story by script-editor and writer Christopher H. Bidmead. Bidmead does try to sew up a few plot holes from the television story. However, given the visual nature of the story and the revelations about the nature of Castrovalva in episode four, I think this is one story that works better on the television screens. I found myself yearning to pop the DVD in and re-watch it several times as I listened. Or maybe that’s because I listened while jogging and was ready to be in front of the TV enjoying a cool glass of water with my feet up….
Changes by Jim Butcher
The twelfth installment in “The Dresden Files,” which I’ve called the most satisfying fantasy series currently being published. Nothing Butcher does here will change that opinion. If anything, Butcher raises the game for the series but offering a book so full of revelations, turning points and plot twists that it’s virtually impossible at times to put down. When you start a story with the revelation that our hero has a daughter he knew nothing about who has been kidnapped as a pawn in the on-going war between magical forces and that’s a minor revelation by story’s end, you know you’ve got something great on your hands. Butcher does end the novel on a cliffhanger, which only makes me that much more anxious for the next installment. (I plan to do a longer review at some point if I can make it more than just–wow, that was good!)
The Wednesday Wars by Gary D. Schmidt
Holling Hoodhood is a Presbyterian, facing his seventh-grade year at Camillo Junior High in Long Island in 1968. Each Wednesday, half of his class goes to Catholic classes while the others attend Jewish classes at their local churches. Holling is left to spend the afternoon with Mrs. Baker, who he assumes hates him because he’s left behind for her to watch over. After a disastrous incident involving cream puffs and chalk dust, Mrs. Baker decides that she and he will read and discuss the works of William Shakespeare together. And so begins a fascinating friendship between two people who might not otherwise see eye to eye but bond over the works of the Bard. No, it’s not one of those inappropriate student-teacher relationship books. It’s a good-natured memoir of a year in school at a time when our country and the world faced political and social unrest. The backdrop of the Vietnam War is never forgotten and it does have an impact on the story. The book is touching, funny and heart-felt.
What I’m Reading Now
The Dream of Perpetual Motion by Dexter Palmer
Steampunk novel. Only about 50 pages in, but so far it’s interesting. It may get put aside when a certain book gets released tomorrow. Which is a segue way to…
What I Plan to Read
This Body of Death by Elizabeth George
It’s a new Lynley and Havers novel. I’m excited…..I love Elizabeth George. I’ve had it on pre-order for months now and it should arrive tomorrow or Wednesday.