Saturday, August 31, 2019

Saturday Reading Wrap-up - 8/31/19

Hey all.  Busy week in the reading sphere this week.  Hang on, it's gonna be a bumpy ride.

A few new ebooks this week - a YA paranormal, a fantasy mystery, and a mystery.  After all the DNFs, I only have two left unread from before - a romance and a SF.  With all the DNFs, I'm surprised I found any new books.  I'm a little gun-shy about picking up new to me authors.  I did however stop by the 'super cheap books' thrift store.  Picked 6 paperbacks for a dollar and 3 hardcovers for another dollar. Got a few new to me authors and some old favs - Helen McInnes, Amy Tan, Andre Norton, Ed McBain.  I also got an old romance by Linda Howard.  I love finding popular authors when they were getting their start in romance.

Books Read:

81) A Holiday for Murder by Agatha Christie (8/27/19) - Mystery/  4 stars.  Christie is never new to me or underappreciated.  Another from the big Christie haul at the thrift store back in March, so 17c.
No review.
Note:  This one only got 4 stars because, for some reason, the way she wrote this one was kind of irritating me.  John says: and then drop down a line, Alice says: and then drop down a line.  I don't remember her doing that for any of her other books.

80) Demon in a Jazz Bar by Christopher A. Gray (8/25/19) - Urban Fantasy?*# - 5 stars.  New to me and way underappreciated.  Free through Freebooksy.
Review: "Not a typical urban fantasy story. In fact, I'm not exactly sure what this was. Sort of like a prequel to something along the lines of 'Callahan's Crosstime Saloon'* by Spider Robinson. All I know is that I thoroughly enjoyed it and it was over so quickly I was sad to see it end. And since I don't see any sequels hanging around in plain sight, I'm going to assume it really is over. =o\

If you've got an afternoon to get sucked into a really good story, take a chance on this one."

Note:  You know how sometimes you read a book and then you just sit there like a dummy staring off into space because you're still thinking about it and then your husband asks if you're alright but you can't explain that you're still stuck in the book's world because you don't want him to have you committed?  Yeah, this was that kind of book.

79) Lost Magic by Alexandria Clarke (8/25/19) - Paranormal Mystery*# - 4 stars.  New to me and underappreciated.  Free through Robin Reads.
Review: "I guess I didn't realize when I downloaded this that it was a book #7. Oh, it's a good story, but there were bits where I could tell I had missed some major stuff along the way. I did love the premise and the characters and the plot. It's loads of fun. I just tripped over my own expectations."

78) The Third Option by Vince Flynn (8/24/19) - Political Thriller - 5 stars.  Picked up at the thrift store for 50c.
No review.  It's Vince Flynn.  His books are already heavily reviewed, so they definitely don't need my two cents.  One thing I will say is that this particular book doesn't exactly wrap everything up, which cheesed me off.  I got more cheesed when I realized I do not own a copy of the next book.  Gah.


8/29/19 - MG fantasy. 17c.  Orphan kid pretty much alone in his guardian's home hears noises and discovers a secret passage that leads him to magical things. Kind of Secret Garden meets Harry Potter meets The Borrowers?  Except not nearly as well written as any of them.  (And written before HP became famous.)  Even kids would think this was lame and dumbed down.  Too bad because, in the acknowledgements, the author thanked another author I'd loved when I was younger, so I really had hopes for this.  =o(

8/28/19 - Legal thriller.  33c.  Liberal lawyer sues big corporation on behalf of little old man crushed by his daughter's untimely death.  Like The Firm meets that one movie from the '80s... Class Action.  There was supposed to be some dark conspiracy later, but I didn't make it that far.  Told in present tense, which I can read if it's done well.  I was just getting used to the tense when it started slapping me around with the liberal stuff.  Meh.  At least it was a thrift store find and I didn't pay much.

8/28/19 - 'Gripping Crime Thriller'.  $2.99.  Aarrgghh.  Gripping, my ass.  Another one of those writers who feel the need to drop the brand names for every little thing, as if that makes up for not really interesting or thrilling writing.  He took more care in the description of the car I'd never heard of than of the first murder.  Bo-ring.  And I paid full price for this one, which kinda pisses me off.   

8/25/19 - MG fantasy.  Free.  Also annoying me.  Yeah, I get that names in fantasy are supposed to be strange, but when I have to try and figure out what the hell every single one might possibly sound like (because when I read, it's like my own voice reading aloud in my head), it takes away from the story.  That and the book started out by making any potential plot impossible and I didn't want to think about what mental gyrations would be necessary to make anything happen.

8/25/19 - Mystery.  Free.  :shrug:  It was annoying me.  The storytelling was kind of all over the place and the backstory load was heavier than I wanted to slog through.

Currently reading...A Tess Gerritsen 'Rizzoli & Isles' that I picked up at a thrift store back in June.  I'm enjoying it, but it's so far down the line from the last one I read that I'm a little lost in the personal stuff.  Great suspense, though.

What's been on your reading calendar this past week?  Anything good?

*It's been decades since I read Callahan's Crosstime Saloon, but as I was reading this, I was struck with the thought that it could've been written as a prequel to a book like that.  If memory serves, CCS was an awesome book.  I should probably try to find myself a copy of that sometime.  (I checked it out of the library back then.)


  1. Which Andre Norton did you get? I 💕💖😍 so much! As for my list this week, I'm at 180/250 on my GR reading challenge. I still haven't gotten back to either Blackstone or The Last Wolf. I need to finish Blackstone. Maybe this weekend if my eyes feel up to it. TLW, it's not costing me anything so I'll let it sit in the Audible app for awhile and see if I ever get back to it. As for what I did listen to this week...

    180 - Blaze (Dark in You #2) Suzanne Wright 3 stars. Lots of sexy bits, an over-the-top plot but I like the demons. Continuation of Harper and Knox's story. I can get the whole series free so I'll eventually work my way through.

    179 - Sapphire Flames (Hidden Legacy #4), Ilona Andrews, UF/PR, 4 stars. I really need to get over the narrator. I love the characters and the new story arc is going places I hadn't anticipated. Maybe I'll up this to 4.5 or 5 stars after the next book comes out next year. *sigh* I hate waiting so long.

    178 - Diamond Fire: A Hidden Legacy Novella (HL #3.5) Ilona Andrews, UF/PR, 4 stars. This is a transition from one trilogy to the next in the series. I wasn't thrilled with the new narrator. I really liked the characters and story, but didn't love it as much as the previous 3 books.

    177 - Wildfire (Hidden Legacy #3) Ilona Andrews, UF/PR, 5 stars for reasons.

    176 - White Hot (Hidden Legacy #2) Ilona Andrews, Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance 5 stars, relisten, I love this series, 'nuff said.

    **None of the books are unknown or underappreciated.

    Currently on Ashes, #3 of Dark in You series. Like I said, they're free, I can do other stuff while the book is playing in the background and I can stop in the middle if a book I have on hold drops. Down the road is a re-listen to Nalini Singh's Guildhunter series because the newest book drops September 24.

    1. I got Star Man's Son. I don't think I have it, but I haven't thumbed through the collection in a while, so I'm not sure.

      Yay for all the reading you did last week! I hope you get back to Blackstone, but I totally get it. Save the eyes for the writing.