Sunday, January 01, 2012

December Reads


December was a productive month for reading fiction! I managed nine books!

Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson - 12/1/2011 
Good - Thriller
Christine has amnesia - the kind in which every day starts as a blank and she can't remember two decades of her adult life.
The premise was intriguing, but the added mystery kept me guessing right until the end. Enjoyable!

The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson by Jerome Charyn - 12/10/2011 
Good - Historical fiction
A meandering first-person look into the passionate crooked mind of Emily Dickinson.
I wanted to like this novel more than I did. I wanted to like Emily Dickinson much more than I did. But she comes off as selfish, insane, and immoral, though with a muddled note of genius.  From what I can tell, this is more fiction than it's not anyway.

Henry Tilney's Diary by Amanda Grange - 12/11/2011 
Excellent - Historical fiction
Starting at age 15, Tilney writes of his family life and eventually meeting Catherine Morland in Bath.
I adore Amanda Grange's Austen hero diaries and I've been eagerly awaiting Tilney's diary since I favor him above all other Austen heroes. Tilney did not disappoint me! Loved reading his side of the story. I think I only have Wickham's Diary left to read (and of course, HE isn't an Austen hero as such!). 

Explosive Eighteen by Janet Evanovich - 12/14/2011 
Excellent - Fiction
Stephanie comes back from Hawaii with a mysterious photograph that lots of bad people want. Plus Joyce Barnhardt is missing, presumed dead.
Back on track with #18, Evanovich's bounty hunter heroine Stephanie Plum finally realizes she can't forever keep two guys dangling on the line. I enjoyed Eighteen a lot!

The Scottish Prisoner by Diana Gabaldon - 12/18/2011 
Excellent - Fiction
Jamie Fraser and Lord John travel to Ireland to investigate an army officer for a court martial and become embroiled in a Jacobite plot.
OK, so you should know up front, The Scottish Prisoner is one of the Lord John novels. (In case you aren't a Gabaldon junkie like me, Lord John is a gay character from the Outlander books - rather a main character.) I read one Lord John novel back a few years ago and it wasn't my thing really, so I've avoided reading any further ones. Until now. I read online that this novel (and all the Lord John books actually) give more detail about the Outlander storyline. So I decided to bite the bullet as it were and give it a try. Glad I did! I know more about Jamie Fraser than I did before, as well as some of the minor characters in the series. And I just skipped over any parts that made me squeamish. There weren't many. 

Suspense and Sensibility (Or First Impressions Revisited) by Carrie Bebris - 12/22/2011 
Good - Historical fiction
Lizzy and Darcy take Kitty and Georgiana to London for the Season, where Kitty meets the cheerful debonair Mr. Dashwood. But he soon undergoes a puzzling and distasteful change.
A nice light mystery involving Austen characters and with a touch of the supernatural. I am working my way through the series. This was #2.

Black Silk by Judith Ivory - 12/26/2011 
Fair - Historical fiction
A Victorian rake falls in love with his guardian's widow, but she is not interested.
This was recommended on an author blog I sometimes read as an example of an unusual romance. I liked the story but found the writing awkward and pretentious. 

Voyager by Diana Gabaldon - 12/28/2011 
Excellent - Historical fiction
Claire travels back to find Jamie and the story eventually makes its way to America.
I listened to Davina Porter's skillful audio recording. Wow, every time I re-read one of Gabaldon's books, I am just amazed by the depth of her plots and the detail of her writing. Love it! This was my 3rd time reading Voyager

Cemetery Girl by David Bell - 12/29/2011 
Good - Thriller
12yo Caitlin disappears when walking her dog, but reappears 4 years later. Her father needs to know where she has been.
Just found out I can borrow library books on my Kindle, so I wanted to test out the process. This title was one that looked good for a test. Interesting story. I didn't really like the way it was written, but it was certainly a page-turner!

Reading Reflex: The Foolproof Phono-Graphix Method for Teaching Your Child to Read by Carmen McGuiness 
Excellent -Non-fiction
I've been working with Suzy out of this book since last spring. It's really been helping her gain confidence in her reading. It was recommended to me by a friend who is a certified teacher with additional training in Reading. WELL worth the money and time!

What are YOU reading!?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I always like to see what you are reading! I am now reading Sue Grafton's latest book and enjoying it immensely. I think I will look into a couple of the books that you have listed here. Love, Mom