Tuesday, March 31, 2015

My March Reads, 2015

Wow, a whopping twelve books read this month. First off, I read all the remaining previously unread Jo-Ann Mapson books our library has. Owen's Daughter and Along Came Mary I rated as 3's. Hank and Chloe and its follow-up, Loving Chloe, I gave 3.5's. The fifth book, Finding Casey, I gave a 4.0. I was well into the book before realizing I had read it before - a little over two years ago. It is the follow-up to Solomon's Oak which I read last month. It was good to re-read Finding Casey so soon after Solomon's Oak - tied up the story line for me. I gave the book a 3.5 two years ago and a 4.0 this time. I think I appreciated Mapson's insight into the psychology of a kidnap/abuse victim a little more on second reading.

Debbie Macomber's A Turn In The Road rated a 3. A cute, light romance given to me by a friend and one I'll pass along.

Five more 4.0's: Gillian Flynn's Sharp Objects. This was the Gone Girl author's first novel. Just as edgy as Gone Girl. Picture of how dysfunctional parents can affect their children.

The Murder Room by P.D. James has convinced me I should have been reading this prolific author all along. The good news is there are many of her books waiting to be read. I'm quite fond of her Scotland Yard Detective Adam Dalgliesh. This book is #12 in the series.

Reading The Red Tent introduced me to Anita Diamant's writing skills. I really liked The Boston Girl. It is the story of family, friendships, and feminism as seen through the life of a young Jewish girl growing up in the North End of Boston in the early 20th Century.

Felicia's Journey by Irish novelist William Trevor is a psychological thriller reminiscent of Minette Walters or Ruth Rendell. The writing is brilliant. The ending is surprising. Unfortunately this is the only Trevor book our library has. I should like to read more of his writings.

Lucy (A president, a marriage, a love affair) by Ellen Feldman is a fictionalized account of the love affair between Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Lucy Mercer Rutherford. Based on actual letters and other historical accounts, it is a moving story of the love between two people who could not be together. Very readable and an insightful look into the lives of some famous people.

Lastly, the only 4.5 this month: A Long Shadow by Charles Todd. I do adore my English crime solvers. Inspector Ian Rutledge is still suffering the effects of being in the trenches during WWI. While he tries to hide his post traumatic stress disorder, he is sent to the countryside to find whomever critically injured the local constable with an arrow to the back. But before he can find the perpetrator, he must first solve the disappearance of a young woman three years prior. Somehow the two cases are connected. To add to the drama, Inspector Rutledge is being followed by an 'invisible' stalker intent on harm. These Charles Todd books are excellent. Our library has the latest one, I just have to patiently wait my turn!

Thursday, March 26, 2015


"Beyond the East, the sunrise,

Sunrise, Nags Head, Bodie Island, The Outer Banks, North Carolina

Beyond the West, the sea,

Seals on Goat Rock Beach, Russian River Estuary, Pacific Ocean, Sonoma County, CA 

And East and West the wander-thirst that will not let me be;
It works in me like madness, dear, to bid me say good-bye;

Climbing up to the cliff dwellings, Bandelier National Monument, Los Alamos, NM

For the seas call, and the stars call, and oh! the call of the sky!

Evening star, Venus, Quiet Harbor, Creston, January 1, 2015

I know not where the white road runs;

Natural Bridge State Resort Park, Slade, KY

Nor what the blue hills are;

Blue Ridge Mountains, NC

But a man can have the sun for a friend, and for his guide a star;

Kathryn, ND, Sheyenne Scenic Byway

And there's no end of voyaging, when once the voice is heard,

Rainbow at Cumberland Falls State Park KY

For the rivers call, and the roads call,

The One-Hundred and Two River, Taylor Co., IA

And, oh! the call of the bird!

Peacock, Ash Lawn-Highland, Home of James Monroe, Charlottesville, VA

Yonder the long horizon lies, and there by night and day

Big Horn Mountains, WY 

The old ships draw to home again,

Freighter off Sullivan's Island, SC

The young ships sail away;

Kilkee (Cill Chaoi) Harbor, County Clare, Ireland (Protected from the Atlantic Ocean by the Duggerna Reef)

And come I may, but go I must, 

Sabino Creek Canyon, Santa Catalina Mountains, Tucson, AZ  

And, if men ask you why, 
You may put the blame on the stars and the sun

Spider Rocks, Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Chinle, AZ

And the white road

Burnside's Bridge, Antietam National Battlefield, Sharpsburg, MD

And the sky!"

Outer Banks, NC

(Wander-Thirst poem by Gerald Gould 1885-1936, Norwich, England)