Saturday, February 25, 2023

8. The Once and Future King

By T.H. White (654 pp, ebook)

When I picked this up, I didn't realize how long it was (4 books in 1) and it's mostly really good but there are some sloggy bits in the middle. This is a re-telling of the story of King Arthur. The first book, The Sword in the Stone is set when Arthur was a boy and growing up with Merlin the magician. This book is so playful and adorable -- I wondered why no one put it in my hands when I was a middle school reader and looking for just this kind of book. (Probably someone did and I didn't read it.) The middle 2 books are about Arthur's enemies, and Lancelot and Guinevere's affair. The last book is about Arthur at the end of his life with everything he built unraveling and trying to make sense of it. There is a lot of food for thought in here -- great turns of phrase. Makes me want to read The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley) again.

Saturday, February 4, 2023

7. Bad Day for Sunshine

By Darinda Jones (397 ebook)

This is yet another author that I have heard a lot about but never read. This one is about Sunshine, a woman who returns to the New Mexico town where she grew up to be sheriff. The story is shared with her teenage daughter who is having a tough time fitting in at school. A teenage girl goes missing and there is drama at the high school. There are a lot of characters including a super sexy former crush who stills lusts for Sunshine. It took me awhile to get into it but ultimately it was a fun read although there was a lot of melodrama.

Sunday, January 29, 2023

6. Darkfever

By Karen Moning (384 ebook)

This is another book I read on recommendation and wasn't what I thought. It's about young woman who goes to Ireland to investigate her sister's murder and gets drawn into paranormal activities. There are Fae and darkness and evil creatures and the main character is the one to save us all. I found her difficult to relate to - her characterization seemed motivated by "being contrary" even if it meant ignoring any sense of self-preservation. There are some good page-turning bits but over all not for me.

Saturday, January 21, 2023

5. Educated, A Memoir

By Tara Westover (352 pp ebook)

I have been hearing about this book forever and I finally got my own copy and it's not quite what I expected. It was harrowing. It's about a woman who was raised in rural Idaho by survivalist Mormans. There is so much violence and the author experienced so much abuse. It was tough to read.

Friday, January 13, 2023

4. A Better Man

By Louise Penny (417 pp ebook)

This is my first Chief Inspector Armand Gamache book but something like 15th in the series and I think I suffered a bit without knowing the background characters and the setting established in the previous books. This one is about a missing woman and a terrible weather event and there's a thread with an artist. I liked that it was set in Quebec - not a setting I have read a lot. Decent crime-solving story.

Monday, January 9, 2023

3. Rez Metal: Inside the Navajo Nation Heavy Metal Scene

By Ashkan Soltani Stone and Natale A. Zappia (89 pp)

This book starts out with a pretty dry academic essay about What is Rez Metal? I was a little disappointed but then it gets to the interview section, talking to different people within the scene and it is riveting! Really amazing people playing and promoting metal music on Navajo rez. I love NDN Country.

Saturday, January 7, 2023

2. Half a King

By Joe Abercrombie (352 ebook)

How did I manage to miss this author for so long? This book is fantasy but set in viking-like times and is about a prince who nobody wants around. He endures a lot of terrible things while he tries to get back to the throne. Amazing writing, great characters, page-turning action. So good. Will be back to finish the series.

Sunday, January 1, 2023

1. Moonflower Murders

By Anthony Horowitz (608 pp)

I am not an expert on the mystery genre but having just read an Agatha Christie I am going to say this is written in the Agatha Christie style with a huge cast of characters that possibly have a motive. Again, I had issues with character fatigue and had to go back and make a post-it to keep everyone straight which is why I groaned when I saw that there is an Agatha Christie style mystery within the Agatha Christie style mystery. The main book is about a former book editor living in Greece who is hired to go back to England and look into the disappearance of a woman associated with the mystery in a previous book by this author. The inner book is about the investigator Atticus Pund hired to investigate the murder of an American actress. Like most murder mysteries, I was turning the pages to get to the end but overall I'm not sure this is my favorite kind of mystery.