Friday, March 20, 2015

Fireplace + coffee + mystery = Happy Unruly

Dreaming Spies by Laurie R. King

Still happening!

Only more so.

I had some of the happiest reading moments while playing hooky from my assigned reading and diving into this book instead. I’m telling you: bliss.

Here’s why:

- Shipboard setting. Man, I’m a sucker for a book set on the high seas. And this book starts with Mary and Holmes studying Japanese onboard a ship, tutored by a young Japanese woman who turns out to have some serious secrets. The picture of them, toiling side by side to learn a challenging language, is really rather charming.

- Japanese setting. King brings Japan and its culture to life, so it’s like being there without the discomforts of travel.

- King’s writing style. I’m telling you, it’s such a doggone comfort to relax in the care of a skilled writer who does all the work so you don’t have to. I just read and luxuriated in her smoothly constructed sentences and nearly purred.

- The delightful blend of zippy action and the mundane pleasures of daily life. Here’s a scene from onboard the ship:
"The damp pages turned. For two hours, absolutely nothing happened: no shots rang out, no tusked boars rampaged down the decks, no flimsy aeroplanes beckoned.
Normal life can be extraordinarily restful." (p. 22)

(I’m purring again.)

This book felt pretty much perfect to me. It might be a happy enough reading memory to tide me over until the next installment. 


Friday, March 13, 2015

Distractedly unruly

Yeah, so I'm supposed to be all doing nothing but reading and listening to audiobooks from my assigned reading list. 

And I was cruising right along, making deadlines (I'd created a schedule for all this assigned stuff: this is serious business), and then this happened:

Yes, people, we're talking dual temptation.

First: I'm at work, librarian-ing away, and my hold for the latest Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes book by Laurie R. King arrives in my mailbox. Like I'm gonna resist that

And then, on the very same day, I get home and hop on over to see what Susan Bybee/Blue-Hearted Bookworm's been writing about, and dear people, she's written a novel. So there was nothing to do but go to Amazon immediately and buy a copy

Needless to say, progress on the assigned reading front (except for the audiobook assignments) has come to a screeching halt. 

Late March is gonna be ugly. 

But in the meantime... man, am I one happy reader.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Describe yourself in 3 words

Because I’m in the midst of the biggest reading cram session of my young life (9 books to finish in the next 6 weeks; totally do-able, but they’re all assigned reading, so there’s little time for the fun kind), I’m communicating this week via shorthand. 

Some of these books below, I read by choice and liked. Some, not so much. 

Here goes…

Shopgirl by Steve Martin
3 words: irreverent, shallow, modern

Manhunt: The 12-Day Chase for Lincoln’s Killer by James L. Swanson
3 words: immediate, detailed, fast-paced

Whiskey Beach by Nora Roberts
3 words: comfortable, homey, unrealistic

...with an unbelievably over-achieving female lead

2:00 “And so accomplished…”

Dad Is Fat by Jim Gaffigan
3 words: funny, quick, warm

Yes Please by Amy Poehler
3 words: varied, comic, Gen X

Point of Origin by Patricia Cornwell
3 words: disturbing, raw, detailed

I'm so reading nothing but what I want. In May.