Sunday, March 17, 2013

Sunday Shout-Out: St. Patrick's Day

 Happy Saint Paddy's Day!

Welcome to Sunday Sound-Off, a regular weekly posting about my reading life, my other than reading life, and life in general in Maine. I also encourage you to drop a comment sounding off about your week, your gripes, your reading life, etc.

During my few minutes of free time in the past several weeks, I've been listening to a couple of my favorite mystery writers. 

I finished the Rose Connor series featuring attorney Marty Nickerson.  False Testimony was every bit as good as the earlier three in the series.  I haven't seen any information that there are any more forthcoming, but I would certainly welcome another.  Marty Nickerson is a sharp, empathetic, decidedly human defense attorney.  Her relationships with her staff, her clients, her adversaries are sharply described and deftly handled by this talented author.  In this story echoing a famous case in DC in the past several years, a US Senator is a "person of interest" in the disappearance of a young female aide. Marty must tiptoe through the legal minefield while trying to figure out what really happened.  Several plot twists along with a very realistic dialogue make this one a winner.

Last fall I was introduced to Elly Griffiths' exciting Ruth Galloway mysteries.  I finished the first one and vowed that I would keep reading in the series.  I put #2 on hold at the local library for an audio download, and finally got that one available in my account in February.   The Janus Stone was very cleverly done.  It definitely builds on the first book, but provides enough back fill to help any reader who starts with this one.  Ruth Galloway is a forensic archaeologist who specializes in bones.  The author is skillful in mixing old Celtic and Roman history with modern day technology, dating methodology, and historic research.  In this story, there is an unidentified headless skeleton that obviously is that of a murdered child.There are several possibilities for the identify, and several suspects from different areas of the country, from different time periods, and with different motivations. There are gory theories, but little actual gore.  There are scary claustrophobic episodes, but they are not enough to turn off this queen of the claustrophobics.  I especially like the way Ruth's private life is highlighted, but not allowed to get in the way of solving the murder and the mystery.  In fact, the timing of events in her life is such that I'm really looking forward to the next book in the series, because something has to give soon. Even with a very thoughtful and thought-provoking ending that seemingly resolves many of the issues Ruth is dealing with, there is still plenty to look forward to in the next book in the series. I've already got it on reserve.

For next week I've got several in the mix:

I'm reading a fun Brit-lit....Constance Harding's (Rather) Startling Year originally published in Britain in 2011, now coming to a bookstore near you.  This is laugh-out-loud fun. I needed something to lighten the mood from some of the others I just finished earlier this week (reviews to come).  Written in the format of a series of blog posts (how fun is that?) it captured me immediately.  Just perfect for quick reading in short spurts, and incredibly amusing.

I've got a delightful ARC on my NOOK : What My Mother Gave Me by Elizabeth Benedict.  It's a memoir about mother/daughter relationships. I've just started it, and I'm enchanted.  It's due out in April, and the publisher says

In What My Mother Gave Me, women look at the relationships between mothers and daughters through a new lens: a daughter’s story of a gift from her mother that has touched her to the bone and served as a model, a metaphor, or a touchstone in her own life. The contributors of these thirty-one original pieces include Pulitzer Prize winners, perennial bestselling novelists, and celebrated broadcast journalists.
      Whether a gift was meant to keep a daughter warm, put a roof over her head, instruct her in the ways of womanhood, encourage her talents, or just remind her of a mother’s love, each story gets to the heart of a relationship.
I'm listening to (and reading the hard copy) another best seller - Canada by Richard Ford  This is a fairly hefty one but it's going pretty well being able to go back and forth, so I'm not losing too much time when I can't be sitting down reading (like driving, swimming, folding clothes, etc).  Of course, I just got to page 200 (Part II) where the word CANADA is finally mentioned. It was a slow but steady build up to this point...a really engrossing read.

I'm  making some progress on my Lenten reading - although Real Life keeps getting in the way.  I did find that  Dermaid McCullogh did a series for the BBC based on his Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years that is available through Netflix.  We've watched the first installment, and have the second one scheduled for this week. It is making me more than ever want to snuggle down into this work. I've finished about 70 pages and find it fascinating but it's daunting to think about almost another 1100 to go!

Well we have been promised a Sunday Without Snow (doesn't that sound like a book title?) even though the temperature is supposed to be rather frigid.  I'm looking forward to a short walk in the fresh air, and then an afternoon in front of the fire with the corned beef, cabbage and potatoes in the slo cooker, and the Irish Soda bread warming in the oven. 

Enjoy your St. Paddy's Day!


  1. there is a new Giffiths book England and Canada. sadly I have not figure out how to get my hands on it yet.

    1. Oh my...Caite....maybe I can have a friend in UK get it for me.....thanks for the heads up. I'm seeing a new one " A Dying Fall" with a pub date of March 5, 2013 on that the one?

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  3. I love St. Paddy's Day! It's also my birthday!

    1. Thanks for spending part of the day with us here. Hope it was green and good fun.


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