Saturday, April 23, 2016

"Extremely Accurate Charts for Book Nerds

I am supposed to be looking up something important or doing something important and saw  this. So of course I am reading that and wanted to share it with you. All true. Click the link for more charts.

Epic Reads Charts for Book Nerds

Here's a couple more truisms (is that a word?).

This is very true. Or that moment of panic when you are almost finished and not sure what you are reading next!

I think this everyday.

 Now what am I supposed to be doing? Happy weekend!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

The First Lie

25249317  The  First Lie (Selkie Moon Mystery #1) by Virginia King

I won The First Lie in an online book scavenger hunt a few months back. That was a lot of fun and even more fun to win 3rd place with a prize of books. Being a book addict/collector, I just got to The First Lie a couple of weeks ago. I like it a lot.

Here is the description:

"When Selkie Moon flees Sydney to start over in Hawaii, it’s to live life on her own terms. But Life has other plans.
Though she tries to dismiss the warning as just another nightmare, it soon becomes apparent that someone, or something, is stalking her. Attacked by frightening visions and mysterious compulsions, she must piece together the fragmented clues before time runs out.
Virginia King effortlessly blends funky creativity and deep spirituality – with a dash of Celtic folklore – to craft a story of one woman’s fight for truth, and her discovery that the lies we tell ourselves are the most dangerous of all." 

One of my favorite movies that my children watched was The Secret of Roan Inish. It was about  the Irish legend of the selkies - seals that can shed their skin to become human. I think I watched the movie more than my kids did. That made me even more interested in this story.

This story combines that myth with a modern mystery. Selkie Moon is the main character. She has left her abusive husband in Sydney and moved to Hawaii to get far away from him and start a business giving motivational seminars. She has several quirky friends including her roommate Wanda who makes art out of dried fish, Derek her assistant, Nigel Derek's partner (they are Selkie's guardians), Coral, a woman who lives on the street but has some ability to see what others cannot and Davina, who is a dress maker but so much more. Selkie has also left her father, stepmother and sister in Sydney and is somewhat estranged from them.

The story begins when Selkie sees a woman in a mirror that belongs to Wanda. The woman is looking right at her and appears to be real. Selkie hears words in her head as if the woman is giving her a message that someone is trying to kill her. When Selkie turns around, the woman is not there. (I always like a little supernatural thing going on). We follow Selkie as she tries to find out who the woman is, get her business going, not fall for another abusive man, not get killed and finally find out what was the first lie.

I loved the writing. It is a good thriller but also has some wonderfully written descriptions of Selkie's experiences? dreams? visions? The story also brings in some the legends and myths in Hawaii. There are many layers to this story. What part does Selkie's childhood play in all that is happening to her? Are these things real, magical, psychological?

The story ends with you wanting to know more. Luckily, book #2, The Second Path, looks like it picks up right where The First Lie, leaves off.

Here is little bit about the author:  "Before Selkie Moon invaded her life, Virginia had been a teacher, an unemployed ex-teacher, the author of over 50 children’s books, an audio-book producer, a workshop presenter and a prize-winning publisher. These days she lives in the Blue Mountains west of Sydney with her husband, where she disappears each day into Selkie Moon’s latest mystery. Bliss"

Bonus: Here is a link to get a free download of the 24 page prequel to the Selkie Moon mysteries: Laying Ghosts.

Another great author from Australia/New Zealand part of the world.

Addendum: I read the prequel, Laying Ghosts. Really quick, short story really. I love how the author plays between reality and supernatural? Serendipity? Luck? Really good and I look forward to reading the next in the series.

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Currrently reading....

Goodness, record amount of work at work this week. (I don't think that is good grammar). It is as bad as the week was, you might say.

I am currently reading:

The First Lie (Selkie Moon Mystery Series Book 1) by Virginia King. I won it in the scavenger hunt I participated in and finally am checking out those books I won. This the second of five and have not been disappointed.


I hope to finish it this weekend, if it rains as promised and I don't feel compelled to "work outside".

Then I will be reading our MBC selection for May:

Rage Against the Dying (Brigid Quinn, #1) by Becky Masterman


One last thing, the final season of Wallander on PBS May 8. We will also have Endeavor and Inspector Lewis in the summer. This will also be the final season for Inspector Lewis. I hope they have some good mysteries in the works for us. :)

Friday, April 8, 2016

In The Blood

Yes I have been missing from this blog for a couple of weeks, I think. And missing reading. We are well into spring here, which has generated spring cleaning during all free time. You know, clearing out weeds, leaves from flower beds, bringing out the patio furniture etc. I have not been able to read much and that is really not making me happy.

I found myself sitting in the middle of the yard on a chair, standing or sitting guard, as my husband was power washing the upstairs "just in case something happens, you stay there". As I sat there looking around, I said to myself, "Hey you could be reading", ran and got my book and finished:

In the Blood (Genealogical Crime Mystery #1) by Steve Robinson


Here's the book description:

"Two hundred years ago a loyalist family fled to England to escape the American War of Independence and seemingly vanished into thin air. American genealogist Jefferson Tayte is hired to find out what happened, but it soon becomes apparent that a calculated killer is out to stop him.
In the Blood combines a centuries-old mystery with a present-day thriller that brings two people from opposite sides of the Atlantic together to uncover a series of carefully hidden crimes. Tayte's research centres around the tragic life of a young Cornish girl, a writing box, and the discovery of a dark secret that he believes will lead him to the family he is looking for. Trouble is, someone else is looking for the same answers and will stop at nothing to find them."

My best friend Kathy recommended this to me last month. My other hobby is genealogy. I have traced my ancestors back to late 1400's on one side and early 1600's on the other side. And I watch all of those family tree shows. So this was a good book for me.

Jeff is hired by Walter Sloane to find more information on the his ancestors. When Jeff hits a "brick wall", Sloane insists he go to England and search over there. Well, Jeff is afraid of flying. But there is an unusual sense of urgency by Sloane. Jeff makes it to England, checks into a bed and breakfast and starts right off to find the Fairborne family that lives in England. No one really wants to talk to James. He is knocked out on his first visit to the Fairborne's and wakes up to a note basically telling him to mind his own business. The records about the family in the historical center have been stolen. His search leads him to Ferryman House, where Amy Fallon lives and runs a ferry service. Her husband went missing over a year ago, when he went out fishing. Work men have found an old writing box during renovations. Seems others are interested in this box. What is the connection?

The story goes back and forth from the story of the Fairborne family in England in the 1700's to Jeff's search which he continues despite, a murder, a kidnapping and someone trying to kill him.

It's a quite a page turner and I loved the historical fiction. The story goes from 1784 to present day. Without saying too much, I will tell you that it involves something devious that you probably thought only goes on today in the modern world of technology. I was surprised to think that may have happened hundreds of years ago, with even worse outcomes.

Can Jeff unweave this centuries old mystery?

There are a total of five books in this genealogical mystery series. And I hear each one is better than the last.