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

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Death of a Cozy Writer (A St. Just Mystery #1)

Death of a Cozy Writer (A St. Just Mystery #1)Death of a Cozy Writer by G.M. Malliet
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was very enjoyable for a cozy mystery.  It has a plethora of twists and turns, improbable relationships and long forgotten injustices.  At first I couldn't find one character I could champion, they were all thoroughly disgusting, but over time some became were revealed.

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Relatives Came

The Relatives CameThe Relatives Came by Cynthia Rylant
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

When I was a child we used to pack up our old Studebaker with a luggage box on the top and drive all day from Virginia to Saltillo, Mississippi. I could almost believe that Cynthia Rylant was writing about us. She has every aspect of our visit in this book...even the "breathing." The visit doesn't include things like visiting Disney World, it is about hugging and fixing things and eating and all the other things that people who love each other and haven't seen each other for a year do. People are sleeping end to end on the floor, eating in shifts, pinching cheeks and just being with each other. The illustrations are superb and the story are perfect. I've bought this book for my cousins and my library. Everyone should have childhood memories like this.

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Sunday, July 21, 2013

Colour Scheme (Roderick Alleyn, #12)

Colour Scheme (Roderick Alleyn, #12)Colour Scheme by Ngaio Marsh
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Another Agatha Christie! If you like her, you will like this.  Another bonus is learning more about New Zealand and hot springs and boiling mud

The story takes place in the hot springs area of New Zealand and surrounds a thoroughly unpleasant man getting murdered by being pushed off the path into boiling mud.  There are a number of suspects and a lot of twists and turns.  The person who seems to be the logical murderer is, of course, the most likable one.

Ngaio Marsh is a master of mystery and this one does not disappoint.

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Friday, July 19, 2013

Eruption (Storm Runners, #3)

Eruption (Storm Runners, #3)Eruption by Roland Smith
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This last book was a little more far fetched than the first two, but a good read for middle graders. The pace is fast and the characters are pretty well drawn. There are a few far fetched incidents, but not enough to spoil the book.

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People of the Wolf (The First North Americans, #1)

People of the Wolf (The First North Americans, #1)People of the Wolf by W. Michael Gear
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am not sure I am going to read this again. I am remembering a lot of it and the only reason I started it again was because I want to read the whole series and I thought I would be missing something if I didn't reread it.

The book is very good, but a little hard to follow. The various tribes have similar naming patterns and the book constantly changes from one tribe to another so it takes a bit of attention to detail to separate them. It is worth the effort though. The authors give a great picture of theses early people and how they lived.

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Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Surge (Storm Runners, #2)

The Surge (Storm Runners, #2)The Surge by Roland Smith
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book was also filled with tremendous action and suspense. Chase and his friends have survived Hurricane Emily but now they have to deal with the flood surge. They are on Emily's farm where an elephant from the Rossi Brother's Circus is getting ready to give birth. Of course, they loose power and Chase has to try to brave the residue of the storm and the floodwaters to get fuel for the generator. On top of this, some of the big cats, the most dangerous one, are missing.

This is a great series for young adults and interesting enough for adults.

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Storm Runners

Storm RunnersStorm Runners by Roland Smith
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a great book for Middle School students...and even adults! Chase and his dad are storm chasers, but not the weather people. Chase's father is a builder and he goes to places in the path of natural disasters. Chase's mother and little sister were killed in a car accident. After his dad was electrocuted in a storm and recovered after a 2 day coma, he sold his house and bought a trailer and equipment which he moved from one site to another, helping people rebuild.

As a category 5 hurricane bears down on central Florida, his dad leaves him at the Rossi Brothers' Circus winter quarters while he goes to help people prepare for the storm. Chase is fascinated by the circus animals which include a pregnant elephant due any day and an extremely hostile leopard, and especially young Nicole who is in his grade at school. As the storm approaches, the principle inadvisedly sends the students home on school busses. When the hurricane changes it's forecasted direction Chase, Nicole and Rashawn find themselves struggling through the hurricane on foot after the bus is overturned.

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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Death Comes to Pemberley

Death Comes to PemberleyDeath Comes to Pemberley by P.D. James
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I realized after a chapter or two that I had read this, but I couldn't remember the ending and P. D. James is always good, so I listened to it again and enjoyed it as much as the first time.

The book is like a sequel to Pride and Prejudice with a mystery in the plot. Murder is done in the Pemberley woods and George Wickham has been accused of the crime. He is still the reprobate he was in P & P and manages to again threaten Pemberley.

The plot winds in and out and various characters from P & P appear. I think James does a great job of creating a further life for them and staying in the same character that Jane Austen created. The book worth reading especially if you are fan of hers. At the very end, two characters from Emma make a brief appearance which adds an interesting note.

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Monday, July 15, 2013

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Miss Peregrine, #1)

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (Miss Peregrine, #1)Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I started this and then it had to go back to the library. The plot was refreshingly new and is based on the existence of a group of people, most of whom function in a time warp. Some of theme also live in the real world and cross back and forth. The hero of the book doesn't know that he is one of the Peculiar children until his grandfather dies and leaves a confusing task for him to complete. This is obviously the first of a series.

My only complaint about this book is some of the language. It saddens me to see our language deteriorating and at younger and younger ages. Some TV programs have so many bleeps you can't make sense of what is being said. Books designed for kids ought to set a better standard.

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Monday, July 08, 2013

Angel with Two Faces

Angel with Two FacesAngel with Two Faces by Nicola Upson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed this , but I felt like it dragged a bit in some parts. I didn't particularly like the lesbian themes because I felt they were outside the plot and didn't add anything to it. I realize that it is part of who Josephine Tey was and, as such, should be included, but not as a side plot. It distracts from the mystery and interrupts the flow.

The mystery itself is very compelling. The plot twists and turns, leaving the reader having to incorporate new information that renders previous conclusions invalid. Loveday is one of the most interesting characters in the book and one I would like to see in future books. At first the reader sees her as simple minded and childlike, but as the plot develops, she reveals her native intelligence and perception. In a book that is, at times, very dark, she is a breath of fresh air.

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