Friday, January 21, 2011

Friday Five: Books!










Jan at RevGalBlogPals says: "I hope some of you received books for Christmas presents; I did and have been reading ever since. Then I discovered a new author from those recommendations that pop up on Amazon.com. Instead of buying those books, I've been checking them out at the library, which will not help Amazon's future recommendations for me at all.

So tell us what you're reading, what you would and would not recommend--five books or authors! "

I'm currently reading mostly mysteries, and as a relaxation method after a day doing taxes, I recommend the "cozy" kind. I read Roberta Isleib's first in a series, Preaching to the Corpse, as the Connecticut entry in my "A Mystery for Every State" project, and just finished her second in that series, Asking for Murder. The protagonist is a psychologist/advice counselor, Rebecca Butterman, who lives in Guilford, CT and works in New Haven. I thought I'd guessed "whodunnit" and was completely wrong!

I also enjoyed Mary Stanton's Angel's Advocate, which is set in Savannah and has a bit of "woo-woo" (supernatural) about it as well as Southern charm.

A very different type of book was S.J. Bolton's third thriller, Blood Harvest. Like her previous ones, it's set in an isolated rural area of the British isles and there is local folklore and some heavy-duty
dysfunction and just plain scary stuff. I also enjoy police procedurals and in this country Michael Connelly is one of the best writers of those -- I recently read his third Harry Bosch novel, The Concrete Blonde. I do read non-fiction, and am currently making my way through John Keegan's The First World War. As Keegan is a military historian, there's a lot about troop movements which my poor grasp of spatial relations makes problematical for me, but it's still good. I received James McPherson's Battle Cry of Freedom, about the Civil War, for Christmas, so that will be my next Big History book.

I did not read every word, but skimmed through Molly O'Neill's One Big Table, a huge American regional cookbook and food history. I was ambivalent. It's got lots of great stuff in it, but it's just too darn big to read comfortably (weighs 5 1/2 lbs!!) and the recipes were a little quirky for my taste -- aebleskiver with blue cheese??? -- and often called for ingredients that are hard to find if one doesn't live in NYC or whatever particular ethnic enclave might have, say, pomegranate molasses on every store shelf. I wouldn't spend the $50 for it but might check it out of the library again -- it's a good book for libraries to have, I'd say.
I do post reviews of my reading on Goodreads.

10 comments:

RevDrKate said...

Oh goodness, now I have more on the to be read list...maybe for the Nook for the BE! Those cozies and mysteries in #1 are right up my alley

Sharon said...

Having been transplanted from south Louisiana, I'm always up for some Southern "woo-woo"! Thanks for the recommendations.

Jan said...

I am glad you suggested all these authors I haven't read before--I'll have more to look for at the library! I also got "One Big Table" for Christmas and have glanced through it, but am somewhat intimidated by its size and breadth.

angela said...

Oh, I feel the same way about battle descriptions! Didn't realize what it was...

added Isleib and Bolton to my list

Jan said...

PS
I echo your remarks about "One Big Table," and wish I'd gotten at the library instead of owning it. Your pictures helped with the books--and I've copied down the authors' names for future reference.

Diane said...

wow, I love all your pictures!
I was lazy and did not do pictures.

Are we friends on Goodreads? I'm going to check that out.

I love your eclectic list.

Barbara B. said...

Haha, I love the phrase "a bit of 'woo-woo'"! I'll have to check out some of these books!

Hot Cup Lutheran said...

Isleib's book sound like something i'd give a go at!

Anonymous said...

I am such a huge fan of Michael Connelly books! I'm excited to check out the movie they are making of The Lincoln Lawyer next month. http://on.fb.me/gUFvA3

Terri said...

I've been reading mysteries lately, too. I've not been big on them, but mostly because I don't like violence in books or television - so if I'm better with mysteries that are about the suspence of figuring out who did it - especially if the plot is not too suspenceful LOL...and I read your comment on Diane's Facebook page, about how cold you all are going to be in the east coast...it's bitter cold here too.