books I've read

Anne Hawn's books

Who Moved My Cheese?
If Democrats Had Any Brains, They'd Be Republicans
Scientific Secrets for Self-Control
Just One Damned Thing After Another
The Vanishing
Exercises in Knitting
The Good Dream
The Very Best of Edgar Allan Poe
The Chosen
BT-Kids' Knits
Talking God
The Professor
The Christmas Files
The Finisher
Home Decor for 18-Inch Dolls: Create 10 Room Settings with Furniture and 15 Outfits with Accessories
Dracula and Other Stories
A New Song
All Quiet on the Western Front
File Under: 13 Suspicious Incidents

Anne Hawn Smith's favorite books »

I'm reading 150 Books

Friday, November 16, 2012

Ballykissangel: The New Arrival

Ballykissangel: The New ArrivalBallykissangel: The New Arrival by Hugh Miller
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I don't know how to rate this book. If you haven't seen the series, it is a nice cozy book.  If you have seen the series, it is more like a screen play.  The dialog is taken right from the script.  I was hoping for some more depth to the characters and some additional story lines, but nothing was there.  If you were a devoted fan of the series, there isn't much point in reading the book.

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Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Girl with the Botticelli Eyes

The Girl with the Botticelli EyesThe Girl with the Botticelli Eyes by Herbert Lieberman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was a little hard to get started, but once I got into it, it was very interesting. The premise is that a killer is murdering young women and carving out their eyes.  At the same time, there is a major show of Botticelli which is being planned by a curator on the way up.  He is trying to arrange to get a descendant of one of Botticelli's young models who resembles her to come to the exhibition. The two stories merge in a dramatic and life changing way.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Winter Study (Anna Pigeon Mysteries, #14)

Winter Study (Anna Pigeon Mysteries, #14)Winter Study by Nevada Barr

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This rating is actually 2-1/2 stars. I was very disappointed in this book. I found it to be more thriller than a good mystery and there was too much violence and disgusting sexual content. I hesitate to say that because there will be those who say that anyone who objects to such content is prudish, but this seems to be a substitute for a well drawn mystery that proceeds from character traits of the perpetrator.

Anna Pigeon has come to Isle Royale in Lake Superior to learn about managing and understanding wolves because her Rocky Mountain National Park may soon have a pack of wolves introduced. She is joining a research team which is part of a 50 year old study of wolves and their behavior. The park has always been closed during the winter for the study, but Homeland Security is considering opening the park to supposedly close a weak border where terrorists may enter the country. They have sent a consultant to report on that possibility.

Shortly after Anna’s arrival, the team discovers evidence that a huge wolf has been seen and there is DNA evidence that it is a cross between dog and wolf, which they call a “Wog.” This animal has been mysteriously introduced and has a behavior pattern foreign to the 3 packs that are already on the island. When a researcher is killed, Anna is no longer studying the wolf packs and becomes a detective and it is at this point that the book degenerates into a sex and violence thriller with improbable behavior and bad language. I am very tired of books that substitute shock value for good writing.

The characters in this book are not well drawn and their roles as victim and killer are pretty evident from the beginning. The conclusion, I believe, is also very weak and does not proceed from the personality of the characters. There are so many places where this book seems to have great potential, but it just doesn’t make it. I hope this is not a trend for the future, because I really enjoy Nevada Barr’s books and would like to enjoy many more.

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Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Dyer Consequences

Dyer Consequences (A Knitting Mystery, # 5)Dyer Consequences by Maggie Sefton
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book was a little lightweight and predictable, but just the right thing for a life of complications and sometimes chaos.  The story revolves around a murder and the friends who frequent the most wonderful yarn shop in the world.  It is nice to read about such a fantastic yarn heaven and dream of unlimited time to knit.

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Monday, November 05, 2012

The Silent Cry

The Silent Cry (William Monk, #8)The Silent Cry by Anne Perry
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is one of the best in this series.  It is really hard to see where it is going until the end, but there is suspense all the way through it.

Two gentlemen lay bleeding in the seedier side of London, one dead and one dying.  They are covered in blood but their injuries don't account for the amount of blood.  The younger man lives, but is terribly injured and can no longer speak.  His hands are shattered and he can't communicate with writing either.  Hester Latterly is called to nurse the young man.

At the same time someone is beating up and raping women in Seven Dials and St. Giles.  The wife of a sweatshop owner comes to Monk to pay him to investigate who is doing this.   The women are not professional prostitutes, but young women who work in the factory for a pittance are forced to make a little money on the side to feed their children.  They are already beaten down by poverty and indifference and now someone is making their existence even more miserable.  The violence is escalating and it is just a matter of time before one of them is killed.

The two cases twist and turn towards each other as Evan investigates the former and Monk the latter.  At the same time, Monk is coming across street people who knew him when he and Runcorn patrolled these streets.  Throughout the book, he gets hints as to what he did to make Runcorn detest him so.  If you follow the series, this book pushes the story line much further along the line.

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Thursday, November 01, 2012

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey

The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey (The Mysterious Benedict Society, #2)The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey by Trenton Lee Stewart
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This series of books was recommended by the Duke Talent Identification program for gifted kids.  It is a wonderful book and especially for gifted children who may have some difficulty understanding their intelligence which often puts a distance between them and their peers.  The children in the Mysterious Benedict Society are all gifted in different ways and they have to learn to accept the differences and making use of their individual gifts.

The story involves the apparent kidnapping of their mentor, Mr. Benedict, who had planned an interesting scavenger hunt for them, but ended up depending on the clues he left for the children to rescue him.

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