Obsession with words

Obsession with words

I love to read and reading helps me to escape. I'm a book addict and currently fighting back the urge to buy ALL THE BOOKS!

Review
4 Stars
Safe Haven
Safe Haven - Nicholas Sparks

I was actually able to squeeze in this book just before the end of February.  I read most of it on Leap day.  I'm following The Unread Shelf my reading goals this year and one of the goals for February was to read a book that was a gift.  I had something else in mind for February and decided I wanted to read 4 books from my tbr list that I didn't have.  I was able to find them all digitally through my library for free.  I really didn't think I'd be able to read those and another gifted book so I didn't pick one out. 

 

This one literally jumped off my shelf and landed on my toe.  I realized it was given to me by a friend so I decided to quickly read it before the month was up.  I don't like Romance so when I saw the cover of this book (mine was a picture from the movie) I didn't really think I'd like it.  I have read other books by Nicholas Sparks, like The Notebook, and they were SAD!  I was surprised though.  The book had my interest all the way through and the romancy sections were light and tolerable for me.  The end was a bit of a thriller and the whole story reminded me of Steven King's Rosemadder without the supernatural parts and Kind's madness.  

 

A young woman is in an abusive relationship and is afraid for her life.  She can't go to the police because her husband IS the police.  The one time she did try to get help from them they talked her into not filing a police report to spare his reputation.  She tried to run away before but he found her and pulled a gun on her and beat her.  She knew he would kill her next time.  This time she had a better plan and a stolen identification from someone who had died.  She cut her hair and dyed it brown.  She got away to a small town where she could start fresh and tried to keep her head down.  She told everyone her name was Katie and rented an old hunting shack where she could be away from neighbors.  She didn't plan on falling in love with a sweet little girl at the local store.  This little girl stole her heart and then so did her brother and their widowed father.  Things seemed to be going great until her husband got a little nugget of information and from that he learned where she was and was determined to get her back.  

 

 

 

 

Review
4 Stars
Greygallows
Greygallows - Barbara Michaels

A young heiress who's family died in an accident when she was young is being raised at a school to develop into a proper lady until she is of age to be married. She knows no one outside of school except an aunt that doesn't seem to care for her and the lawyer handing her funds. She knew there was enough money for things but she didn't know she was exactly wealthy because no one informed of anything. Women had no control over their property and the lawyer handled her funds until it could be transferred to her husband. After her schooling was complete her aunt came to pick her up to get her prepared for meeting suitors. She soon found her aunt was a hateful woman who did not care about her at all. She also found the Lawyer, who always seemed nice, really didn't care either. Her aunt was setting her up to marry a man she'd been warned about by a old school friend. She was told about about a family curse where all the wives died in childbirth, including his own mother. She was afraid of him but she had no choice but to go and soon found herself in a creepy mansion called Greygallows with no one to talk to but the servants and a few other people. There she was told of dark legends and the White Lady, a ghost which is only seen by the women who soon die. Her husband becomes violent at times and she has no way out, no one or no where to run to.

 

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I thought this book seemed familiar to me and I think it is actually the first BM's book I read.  I don't usually keep books after reading them and if I do they get moved to my permanent library shelves so it must have been a long time ago.  When I read part 1 is was totally new to me so it wasn't until I got to the gloomier section that I started remembering details.  I didn't remember that much though and I kept getting mixed up between other books she's written with similar details.  It was pretty good though after the first part.

Review
3 Stars
The Barrakee Mystery
The Barrakee Mystery - Arthur W. Upfield

(Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte #1)

 

I knew I was going to have a hard time with the racist tones of this book but I also know it is an example of how life truly was during that time. It is very sad to me but we can't go back and change the past. I did get into the story and enjoyed it although a few things didn't make sense to me. I'm pretty sure a mixed race child that is born white doesn't really get darker with age. Of course, I don't know anything about Australia so maybe things are different there. Still, some of the things said at the end where the details were all laid out to the young man where annoying to me, like how he suddenly started to talk like the natives.

February Goals

Wow, I am really surprised that I was able to finish this list.  I found them all through my library's digital library so I didn't have to buy them or buy ebooks.  These are books that have been on my list for ages so I'm really glad to get them crossed off my list.  Now, if I ever find Body Language I know I can throw it away.  I can move on to the next in the Prey series by John Sandford and maybe I'll read the next book in the Amelia Peabody series (which I also don't have).  I do have the 2nd book in the Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte series and that is another very dusty book I need to get read or otherwise more on.  It is just very difficult to read about the racism.  

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I mentioned that I am following The Unread Shelf reading plan this year, however, at times I am tweaking things a bit.  This month the idea is to read books that were given to you by friends or publishers etc.  I'm just not feeling any of those but the books that are calling me are books I don't actually have but are like a thorn in my side.  One of these books is the oldest book on my TBR list but I can't find it now.  I am baffled and the only thing I can think of is it got stuck in the garage.  Some of my family members will "clean up" by grabbing a box or tub etc and just put random things in it and stuff it in the garage.  Out of sight, out of mind. I'll probably find it one day with that book, a roll of tape, TP, fishfood, dog toys, and some old junk mail.  

 

Anyway, I found the ebook was available through my library's digital library and I am going to read it and mark if off my list.  That book is called Body Language by Julius Fast.  It is non-fiction so I tend to put it down and forget to go back to it.  It is actually interesting so I just need to make myself focus on it.  

 

The other books I hope I can get to this month are books I don't have but they are earlier in a series than books I do have.  I always read series books in order so I need to read these books before I can read the books I actually have. 

 

The books I've decided to focus on for this month are:

 

  1. Body Language by Julius Fast (reading slowly) Finished 2/21
  2. Sudden Prey (Lucas Davenport #8) by John Sandford  Finished 2/17
  3. The Curse of the Pharaohs (Amelia Peabody #2) by Elizabeth Peters Finished 2/20
  4. The Barrakee Mystery (Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte #1) by Arthur W. Upfield Finished 2/22

 

Of course, I have been feeling off this month so I'm not getting as much read as I'd have liked.  I'll just read what I can and what I don't get read this month will just get moved to another month.  

 

 

 

Review
3 Stars
Body Language
Body Language - Julius Fast

This book was interesting in part and also rather dull. It is an older book so many of the examples use outdated information or subjects. I'm glad I finally read it though and can now cross it off of my list.  

Review
3 Stars
The Curse of the Pharaohs
The Curse of the Pharaohs - Elizabeth Peters

This book was nowhere near as good as the first.  It was almost like a comedy routine to me.  Mrs Peabody seemed more dumb and I thought so many of the things she did were just putting herself in danger rather than helping.  There was no common sense in evidence.  I couldn't wait until the book was finished so I could move on to something else.  Do I really want to read more in this series?  Does it get better?

Review
4 Stars
Sudden Prey
Sudden Prey - John Sandford

I love these books and can't get enough of them.  They are so violent but sometimes things don't really jive with reality.  I think that is the reason I can enjoy them for the most part.  The times I have started to read a true crime story and get to this level of craziness, I find I can't continue.  I can't enjoy these books if they are too real.  I want the bad guys to lose and the good guys to win in the end.  

 

This story was pretty intense with an escaped convict and a couple of his buddies ganging up to kill cops or their family.  To add flame to the fire they had a cop working with them and feeding them information.  They had something on him so he was blackmailed into giving them information about cops and where they lived.  He didn't really want anyone to get hurt so he was trying to play both sides.  This was one of those books I didn't want to put down but at the same time I didn't want it to end too soon.  

 

A few things did bother me about the story -  like the women who didn't want to stay in protection when there were madmen after them.  So, they knew these guys were gunning for the wives/girlfriends of the police and had actually killed some and wounded some.  Who in their right mind would insist on going to work anyway?  I found myself hoping the two women, ex-girlfriend and fiancée, would get killed just because they were so annoying and stupid.  In some of the other books too there was some conversation with these women and Davenport that was just plain stupid.  Basically, they are turned off by how he gets this thrill from the job or getting the bad guy.  They don't like it when criminals are killed instead of talked down, locked up, and "fixed".  It's like the author wants you to hate them.  

 

Then, there was the case of two characters seeming to have a personality change at the end of the book.  Sure people might might snap but it's doubtful they would ever really get nice.  

 

So, in a nutshell, I loved it AND hated it.  I still give it 4 stars for the impossible-to-put-downness minus a few stupid moments.

Review
4 Stars
Under My hat: Tales from the Cauldron
Under My Hat: Tales from the Cauldron - Jim Butcher, Frances Hardinge, Holly Black, Delia Sherman, Neil Gaiman, Tanith Lee, Peter S. Beagle, M. Rickert, Tim Pratt, Margo Lanagan, Isobelle Carmody, Ellen Klages, Jonathan Strahan, Diana Peterfreund, Ellen Kushner, Charles de Lint, Jane Yolen, Garth Nix, Patricia A

I enjoyed all of these tales of witches and other magical things, some more than others. I actually got this book specifically to read the story by Jim Butcher but books like these are great for finding other authors you might like to read. I think my favorite was The Witch in the Wood by Delia Sherman. I wish that was a whole book.

Review
4 Stars
Anyway You Can
Anyway You Can: Doctor Bosworth Shares Her Mom's Cancer Journey: A BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO KETONES FOR LIFE - Annette Bosworth

This is a book my sister gave me about the Keto diet.  I started the keto diet a year ago Nov 1st and lasted a year.  I decided to go off the diet so I could enjoy the holidays.  It was sure nice to have a break but I wish I hadn't done it now.  Anyway, this was an interesting story about how Dr. Bosworth decided to try to help her mom who was ready to give up on life and stop her chemo.  Dr. Bosworth read a lot of research and decided to give the Ketogenic diet a try.  

 

Now, Doctor Bosworth is a doctor and definitely not a writer.  She seems to have self published this book without proof reading it and that shows.  

 

This book had a lot of good information about the keto diet in it. It also has a lot of typos and redundancies but I was willing to overlook that for the other information. I have been on the Keto diet for a year already and some of what I read about problems you can experience when starting the diet made a lot of sense. I gave this book to my husband who was recently diagnosed as diabetic so I am hoping he will be willing to give Keto a try.

Review
3.5 Stars
Sons of the Wolf
Sons of the Wolf - Barbara Michaels

This is the second book I read from my list.  The title of this book is what grabbed me because I enjoy reading about werewolves.  This book wasn't the best but it still had my attention all the way through.  Some parts of it were annoying to me like

how a character that seems to be a shithead through the majority of the story turns out to me the hero in the end. 

(show spoiler)

It is also left up to the readers imagination as to whether Mr. Wolf is actually a werewolf or or just ugly when he's mad.   

Review
4 Stars
Mind Prey
Mind Prey - John Sandford

I love these books.  I'm addicted to this series.  I actually bought these books YEARS ago and felt like I needed to collected all of them that were available before starting to read them.  I finally started reading them and wasn't sold at first.  The murders were pretty graphic.  I went on the next one though and now I just can't stop.  

 

This was a great story and different from the other stories in that it was about a woman and her two daughters that were kidnapped. I liked the change of pace instead of just another psychopath on the lose killing people. They were racing to figure out who did it and why so they could find them before they were killed. I didn't want to put the book down even when I could barely keep my eyes open.

Review
3.5 Stars
The Crying Child
The Crying Child - Barbara Michaels

This was the first book from my list that I read.  

 

I enjoyed this story but felt it was a bit slow moving. I loved the idea of the story more than anything. I love stories that involve something that happened in the past. I love when they go back to look at what happened in the past to dig out secrets by look into genealogy or long forgotten items that have been stored away. This book wasn't very long but it sure seemed to take longer to get to the next stage of the story. I kept putting it down and I've read bigger books in shorter times; the story just kept losing my interest. I enjoyed the ending as it wasn't what I expected and not something I've read before in another book.

 

Review
3 Stars
Mister Monday
Mister Monday - Garth Nix

This book was in a box of things to be donated to good will.  The cover of the book was cool and I was curious about the story.  It turns out that actually happened twice because I'm the one that bought this book for my son.  I remember being curious about the cover when I bought it.  He said he never read it though.  At first I wasn't sure which of my sons I gave the book to but since some sort of blue drink had been dripped on the cover and not wiped away I was sure it was the younger one.  My oldest son never damaged a book except from over reading.  My younger son was not a big reader but I tried.  Anyway...

 

This book was interesting.  It was a bit too out there for me but I still enjoyed it.  It's kind of like there are no real rules so even in a real bind there is always a way out, even when it makes no sense.  It was odd though, some parts of it almost sounded like they could be hinting at Christianity and the Bible but never directly.  Maybe its just me?  

Review
5 Stars
Summer Knight
Summer Knight - Jim Butcher

This book was AMAZING.  My husband recommended I read this series and I was reluctant because I typically only read realism.  It wasn't until I picked up and read a fantasy book (totally forgot why or what the story was) and loved it.  Then I decided to read a few more fantasy books and enjoyed them.  This was the 4th book in this series and it seems the story gets more amazing with every book.  This book was epic and blew my mind.  The whole fairy war part was incredible and the ending was totally - not spoiled.

Hi, long time no type

This year I am following The Unread Shelf but mainly trying to read the oldest books on my TBR list.  Of course, the list I'm going by is just the order of which I added the books on my shelf and not necessary in the order I acquired them.  Still, I have to start somewhere and the new books coming in are getting added in the right order.  I'll eventually get caught up.  

 

The unread shelf recommends a book buying ban every other month starting with January and I did manage to accomplish that.  It was difficult when I was travelling to Vegas to avoid bookstores but I did it and only read books I already had.  

 

Here is my stack to books I chose to make a priority this year.  The picture turned sideways but I decided to leave it that way.  It makes it easier to read the spines.  So far I've read 2 of them.  

 

Review
4 Stars
Loving You with Teeth & Claws
Loving You with Teeth and Claws: A Dead Things Prequel - Martina McAtee

This is the first book by Martina McAtee that I’ve read and it is totally outside of my usual genres.  I was just so drawn in by the unusual covers of her books.  She won the 2016 Reader’s Favorite Gold Medal for her first book, Children Shouldn’t play with Dead Things.  This book, Loving You with Teeth and Claws, is a prequel to the series.  Martina McAttee’s books are Young Adult and Paranormal with a bit of Romance to keep things simmering.  I loved this book and can’t wait to read Book 1, Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things.

 

This story starts with Neoma, a young girl who is being chased by Dylan (a wolf shifter).  She hides from him but he can smell her.  She is so scared of him but she can’t remember why exactly.  She just knows that if he finds her, he will take her to the woman again and they will hurt her.  She finds a place and tries to make herself very small.  He finds her though, he always does, and in her frightened state she feels power coming up to her from the ground and then Dylan is dead.  At least she thinks he is.  She runs to the woods and runs into Wren.  She was so relieved because Dylan had told her that Wren was dead and couldn’t save her.

 

Wren doesn’t know what has been going on but he knows something isn’t right.  He left Neoma with his family to look out for her but they let someone hurt her.  He took Neoma and ran. They had to get as far away from there as they could before his dad found out they were gone.  They go to an old witch who tells him that someone has been hurting Neoma but he can’t see the scars because she has been glamoured.  There were also many other spells on her, some blocking her memory.  The witch showed Wren a glimpse of what Neoma really looked like and it was awful.  He couldn’t believe someone would do such a think to such a sweet little girl.  Then the witch suddenly told him the little girl has a passenger and is attacked by someone Wren can’t see.  The witch told him to get out of there and go to a town that is hidden by magic to see his betrothed.  He grabs Neoma and runs thinking maybe this person and her pack can help protect them from his father who desperately wants Neoma back.  Wren doesn’t understand why his father wants Neoma so badly but he plans to do whatever it takes to protect her.  Meanwhile, Alpha wolf, Isa McGowan, is trying to get four pre-teens out the door for school so she can get to work on time.  She is only 22 but can’t live her life like she would like to.  She has to care for these kids and run a restaurant to stay afloat.  Her pack isn’t what it used to be but she is doing all she can.  She also has no idea of the mess that is heading her way.

2020 Reading Challenge

2020 Reading Challenge
Donna has read 6 books toward her goal of 75 books.
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