31 October 2010

Happy Halloween 2010

Lady K is a live cheerleader as opposed to the undead princess of the night she was last year and the zombie bride she will be next year.....We had a pretty good time of it tonight...we walked a couple of miles and it was all in our neighborhood.

Happy Halloween!!

30 October 2010

Fun on a Leaf-filled Day

Hillbilly leaf bag holder...I love the clamps...
Lady K checking out the hillbilly ingenuity

Running leap...
Leaf jumping at its finest...

29 October 2010

NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEED: A Haunted Guesthouse Mystery - E J Copperman

From the back of the book: 7 bedrooms, 4 baths, 2 ghosts.
Newly divorced Alison Kerby wants a second chance for herself and her nine-year-old daughter, so she's returned to her hometown on the Jersey Shore to transform a fixer-upper into a charming---and hopefully profitable---guesthouse. But when a bump on the head leaves her seeing not only stars but spirits, Alison realizes the real challenge she's facing is out of this world.
The two residing ghosts are Maxie Malone, the foul-tempered former owner of the house (who has definite opinions about Alison's design plans), and Paul Harrison, a private eye who'd been working for Maxie--both died in the house on the same night. The official cause of death was suicide, but the ghosts insist they were murdered, and they need Alison to find out who killed them---or he next ghost in the guesthouse will be Alison herself.......
I loves me a fab cozy, yes I do. And this one is it. Cozy mysteries are fun and cozies with ghosts are even more so. This one has two ghosts in the house and one is a supreme smartass former owner of the house and the other is the staid private investigator trying to solve the case of their death. They're confined to the house and grounds so they cant' do much until Alison shows up, gets bonked on the cranium (by the smartass former owner ghost) and reluctantly agrees to do the field work. Hilarity and action ensues.
My favorite character, besides the smartass ghost, is Alison's daughter Melissa. She is a well-written nine-year-old, eye rolling exasperation and all.
Five meddling ghosts beans....

IRON LAKE: A Cork O'Connor Mystery #1 - William Kent Krueger, narr David Chandler

From the back of the BOCD: Anthony Award-winning author William Kent Krueger pens and riveting tale in IRON LAKE, the first in a thrilling series about a down-and-out ex-sheriff who is having trouble retiring his badge.

Cork O'Connor loses his job as sheriff in small-town Aurora, Minnesota, after being blamed for a tragedy on the local Anishinaabe Indian reservation. And now he faces losing his family, too, when his wife files for divorce. But he'll have to set aside his personal demons when a young boy goes missing on the sameday retired judge commits suicide---and no one but O'Connor suspects foul play.

Krueger won the Barry Award for Best First Novel and the Minnesota Book Award for this stellar series debut, as well as his first of several Anthony Awards. Narrator David Chandler's thrilling performance of this bone-chilling mystery will leave listeners craving more.
My friend, Lynne, who lives in Minnesota, loves this series. She recommended it a couple of years ago. It took a year or so for me to get it on the WWBL, then another year to find it and get it onto Mt Git'r'Read. I found it on Recorded Books and added it to my wishlist there. I bumped it up to the top and it arrived on my doorstep.
I swear I don't know why I waited so long to read or listen to this superb mystery. It's more than a mystery suspense. It's a book about a man trying to figure out where his life took such a different path than the one he wanted. He is no longer the sheriff, no longer a family man, no longer sure he knows what he wants from life.
The mystery has plenty of twists that are spectacular, but make sense. There is nothing that is contrived.
I'll get my print copy of this book to my dad who will then get it to my sister and there will be two more fans of Krueger and this series.
Five superb thriller in the cold sparkly diamonds......

27 October 2010

Wanton Wantin' Book List Wednesday - 27 OCT 2010

DELICIOUS AND SUSPICIOUS: A Memphis BBQ Mystery #1 - Riley Adams, cozy mystery
MURDER AT THE PTA: PTA Mystery #1 - Laura Alden, cozy
MYSTIC WITCH - Mark All, UF, TPB, harstan likes
THE WINDUP GIRL - Paolo Baciagalupi, steampunk/sci-fi, TPB, recommended by Jeanne and Mario
RAVEN BLACK: Shetland Island Quartet Book One - Ann Cleeves, Brit thriller
FUNDRAISING THE DEAD: A Museum Mystery #1 - Sheila Connelly, cozy mystery
PETTY MAGIC: Being the Memoirs and Confessions Miss Evelyn Harbinger, Temptress and Troublemaker - Camille DeAngelis, paranormal funny, rec by Becky(nomoregrumpybookseller)
WOLF MOON - Charles de Lint, fantasy
THE GREYFRIAR (Vampire Empire Book One) - Clay Griffith and Susan Griffith, steampunk
THE SEANCE - John Harwood, Victorian horror
TWISTED LADDER - Rhodi Hawk, Souther gothic thriller
HOOKED ON MURDER: Crochet Mystery #1 - Betty Hechtman
GRACE UNDER PRESSURE: A Manor of Murder Mystery - Julie Hyzy, cozy mystery
THE DEAD PATH - Stephen M Irwin, thriller/horror (as rec by Becky, nomoregrumpybookseller)


From the back of the BOCD: A moving tale of love and courage, THE GUERNSEY LITERARY AND POTATO PEEL PIE SOCIETY starts in 1946 when the residents of Guernsey---an English Channel island that was heavily occupied by Nazis during the war---begin recounting their experiences through letters.
I really do not know what took me so long to read this book unless I was waiting for it come out in audio with Recorded Books. I am so glad I listened to this lovely book with narrators Paul Boehmer, Susan Duerden, Rosalyn Landor, John Lee, and Juliet Mills telling the story.
I enjoyed the way the tale was told through the letters and telegrams written between the characters, the author wanting to tell the story once she discovered there was a story to tell of the occupation of the Nazis on Guernsey and the inhabitants of the island and how they coped.
I'm not sure who was my favorite character, there were so many unique individuals.
I know I want to visit this island and wish that I could meet these people.
I can highly recommend this story to anyone who wishes to read or listen to a wonderful book.
I can't think of anything else that the gazillion of other glowing reviewers I will stop....A big bowl of pearls for this...

26 October 2010

JUGGLER IN THE WIND: The Wand Bearer Trilogy Part One - Wim Coleman and Pat Perrin

From the back of the book: "Now here I was, holding the wand in my own hand, an object of uncanny power. And I felt that power beginning to seep through me, charging me with an energy I had never experienced before, healing all my wounds with each passing dawned on me that I was being tested, called upon to prove something about myself."

When a ragtag circus shows up in the town of Buchanan, Kansas, fourteen-year-old Randy Carmichael faces a deep mystery. Why is his alcoholic mother so troubled by the troupe's arrival? What does Circus Olympus mean to her past--and to Randy's future? Voices summon him , a godlike figure appears in his deams, and supernatural adversaries lie in wait for him as he embarks on a dangerous quest that will take him beyond mortal reality.
I received this from LibraryThing's drawing last month. It's my first YA from them and I hope it won't be my last. I like to read a well written book that intrigues me with premise, characters and story. This one is a little rough around the edges, but it hit all the requisite cylinders for me to enjoy the ride.
I like the direction the start of this trilogy is going. There is mythology and possible deities in the mix. The mystery of who Randy is remembering himself to be, who the Circus Olympus might be and where the journey is going.
I do look forward to the rest of this trilogy and I will be looking for more of the authors' books.

Four mythical journey beans......

25 October 2010

Books in the House Monday - 25 OCT 2010

From Orchard Books (it's open again!!)
ELECTRIC CITY - K K Beck, cozy mystery
MILWAUKEE SUMMERS CAN BE DEADLY - Kathleen Anne Barrett, cozy mystery
THE MASK OF ATREUS - A J Hartley, thriller
EVIL IN CARNATIONS - Kate Collins, cozy mystery
From the author:

24 October 2010

Lady K Chickie Rite of Passage

Lady K went from not ever wanting to have ears pierced to wanting it done as a birthday present when she turns 8, to asking to having them done this weekend. It was Mommie and Me moment at Claire's at the Orchard Center. Thankfully, she saw a girl getting her ears pierced yesterday at the Claire's at the Castlerock Outlet Mall so she was prepared.
Still a little nervous today, but she sat quietly and got it done. She loves her Hello Kitty posts and is already eyeing my collection to see what she can borrow in 8 weeks.
We shopped for earrings afterward and over to Orchard Books to see what I could add to Mt Git'r'Read, then to Abbott's Frozen Custard

22 October 2010

SHAKEN: Jacqueline "Jack" Daniels Mysteries #7 - J A Konrath

My thoughts on SHAKEN: Jacqueline "Jack" Daniels Mysteries #7....J A Konrath starts the book with the following: that the reader of the Kindle version has a choice...he's trying something new and wrote the story twice..not two stories, but the story written two ways. One was the linear regular way and the other was out of sequence. He wanted to know what the reader thought of each.
I went out of sequence since I don't mind reading a book that way so long as I have a wee cranium's up for the jump in time. Joe complies and I did just fine.
This is a thriller in the finest sense of the genre. Mr. K is a killer who Jack has been tracking for 20 some years. The story goes back and forth through time, beginning with Jack's realization that she has been abducted.
The rest of the book is bringing the reader up to date on Jack's life over the past 20 years, going from rookie cop to private sector investigator. And hunting Mr. K.
I enjoyed watching her learn about Armani and Ralph Lauren clothing in the 80s when she mostly shops at Sears.
What I like most about this series (and this author) is laughing and being freaked out in the same chapter. Dry humor that has me laughing out loud and the graphic scenes that has me squinching myself into my chair to get far away from the murder/torture being depicted on the page. That's talent and a very good book.
Favorite characters....Jack definitely since she's so sure of herself and she's the good guy. Herb and harry, especially Harry, since he makes me laugh. I surround myself with people like Harry. I do love to 'snort laugh'. Herb is a sweetie and a good friend to Jack. My friends are like that too.
I read this in one day, peeps!! It was difficult to put down, so I didn't.
The book had a helluva WTF cliffhanger and I cannot wait to read STIRRED, the collaborative work of art of Joe Konrath and Blake Crouch. Blake is the author of the extremely terrifying DESERT PLACES, LOCKED DOORS, ABANDON, and SNOWBOUND....I have read one and working up the nerve to read the rest.
Go forth and read the Jack Daniels series and anything else that J A Konrath/Jack Kilborn has written and anything he has collaborated on, and, hell, anything he, I'm not sucking up, he's just never steered me wrong.

Five not sucking up this is damn good sparkly diamonds.....

18 October 2010

A Lady K and Me Production

Moon and stars
I swear this is a spider

Dayonna, Dr Day Bonbutch, and Mrs Day Bonbutch

Books in the House Monday - 18 Oct 2010

From Becky (NoMoreGrumpyBookseller) after she saw my WWBL a couple of weeks ago:
AWAKENING - S J Bolton, thriller, HB

LibraryThing September win:

JUGGLER IN THE WIND: Wandbearer Trilogy Book One - Wim Coleman and Pat Perrin, YA fantasy, TPB

High Crimes Mystery Bookshop:

CHAPTER AND HEARSE: Booktown Mystery #4 - Lorna Barrett, cozy mystery, MPB

DEEPLY, DESPERATELY: Lucy Valentine #2 - Heather Webber, cozy paranormal mystery, MPB

POISON: A Novel of the Renaissance - Sarah Poole, suspense, TPB

THE MISSING INK: Tattoo Shop Mystery #1 - Karen E Olson, cozy mystery, MPB

DARK AND STORMY KNIGHTS - Anthology of Jim Butcher, Ilona Andrews, Carrie Vaughn, Vicki Pettersson, and more....

WINGS TO THE KINGDOM: Eden Moore Story #2 - Cherie Priest, paranormal suspense, TPB

From Ginny on WW BTO:

CALL THE DEAD AGAIN - Ann Granger, British mystery


17 October 2010

Off to the Pumpkin Ranch

A wagon load...
The perfect pumpkin...probably...
Lady K finding her inner witch

Blooms on Sunday - 17 Oct 2010

Chocolate flower is much happier in its new locale
Gotta love the California Poppies that keep on keepin' on

New location for the Chocolate Flower

Pretty little Salvia Raspberry Delight..still perky

If you look closely in the upper lefthand corner, there's a bird riding the grasses and chowing down on the seeds...It was full of birds, but scattered when I got up to take the's like watching a bird's carnival ride

15 October 2010

DRACULAS: A Novel of Terror -F Paul Wilson, Jeff Strand, Blake Crouch, and Jack Kilborn

My thoughts on DRACULAS....
This ain't no TWILIGHT, shiny sparkly vampire book...ruh-ruh....DRACULAS is butt-ugly fromthe get-go. And I mean that in the best way possible. Four authors who have scared the bejeezus out of me in the past with their books have collaborated to write this scarey-ass ode to the uber-Daddy of the vampires, Dracula. (they do apologize in the acknowledgements)

Dracula's skull (fangs and all) has been discovered by a farmer in Transylvania. Mortimer Moorecook purchases the skull for an unnamed price...all hell breaks loose from there.

Mortimer is dying and decides he want to not go into that dark night...he takes matters into his own hands and uses the skulls fangs to bite himself in the neck. It isn't pretty.

The story is told through different points of view. Each moving on through the story is seen as it is happening to that person. The reader gets to know each character, good and bad, incompetent and reluctant hero.

I had some laugh out loud moments, especially with Randall, the quarter shy of a dollar dim lumberjack. Like this line, "His chainsaw-the-monster redemption would be a lot better if his ass wasn't hanging out." I sort of had images Bruce Campbell's character, Ash J Williams, of Evil Dead eminence when I read Randall's scenes.

Even through the scary parts (and it's all scary), there is laughter and tears...yeah I cried. These are four splendid authors who can do this to a reader.

PS...and now I really hate clowns...
PPS/PSS..whatever...did you know that nondairy coffee creamer was flammable? READ THE BOOK!

This e-book will be released on 19 October. You can pre-order here. I jumped at the chance to review this. You should jump at the chance to read it.

A big scary bowl of diamonds rating here.....

11 October 2010

AVENGING ANGELS: Beaufort & Company #3 - Mary Stanton

From the back of the book: Being a lawyer has its challenges, but this is downright otherworldly. With a long list of ethereal clients who need her help, Bree's career choice is beginning to haunt her....
Traditional law school hasn't prepared Brianna Winston-Beaufort for her latest job: handling appeal cases for the souls of the dead. Since she inherited her great-uncle's haunted Savannah law firm, Beaufort & Company, she's faced some fairly determined adversaries in the Celestial Courts. Now she's representing ex-banker Russell O'Rourke, who supposedly killed himself after losing a fortune.
This case is as cold as O'Rourke's grave, but with a widow as merry as his and with evidence mounting, it's beginning to look like murder. So Bree and her team of angels employ their usual investigative techniques to discover who might hold the key to breaking the case. But as she digs deeper, Bree discovers that someone would rather see her deceased that debriefed.
This is such a neat favorite of mine series. It's a great example of the paranormal mystery genre. I love the characters, the premise of a human working with angels to help people who might have been wrongly put in the nether reaches of the afterlife.
This one had a lot of twists and turns as much as it showed the evolution of Bree in her new role as an advocate. She enjoys what she's doing, even if it causes sleepless nights and haunted law offices.
There is not as much scary stuff as in the past two books in the series. The first one scared the bejeezus out of me, the second one eased up and this one is only a weensy bit scarey. It's more about the relationship Bree has with her sister and her angels and her clients.
I really enjoyed this read and can't wait til the next one, ANGEL'S VERDICT, out next year.
Five angel beans....

10 October 2010

Halloween Decorations are starting to go up....

The collection of itty-bitties on the shelf over the microwave

Skeleton of the guy who had too much sumpn' sumpn' (note the goblet on his left)..probably wise we don't throw many do's here at the casa

Love this guy....he scared the milkman who delivers in the wee hours of the AM....

And a live spider getting in on the act...he/she's (don't want to get close enough to see which) made a home in the tomato plants near the composter

Go See Secretariat!!!

Lady K and I just got back from the 0855 showing of Secretariat. This has got to be the best movie I've seen this year. I tend to shy away from movies based on fact, since I know the ending...and those movies are always overblown in production and publicity. I made an exception for Secretariat for Lady K and what I saw in the advertisements. I also like Diane Lane and John Malkovich and James Cromwell, three of the stars.
The movie is more than a story of a horse who won the Triple Crown, it's the story of the people who believed in him. The people who made this movie did the best filming angles, story writing, acting. I kept laughing at the funniest bits and raising my fists in victory and cheering when Secretariat won each race. Lady K and I danced in our seats at the tunes played, "Oh Happy Day" performed by the Edwin Hawkins Singers and "I'll Take You There" performed by The Staple Singers. The radio is playing in each scene the songs are played as Penny (Diane Lane), Lucien (John Malkovich) and Eddie (Nelsan Ellis) as they are washing down Secretariat. The scenes of laughter, smiles and dancing made me grin and feel so much better.
And it did take me a bit to recognize one of the actors, Nelsan Ellis, playing Eddie, Secretariat's groom and friend. Nelsan is known to me as Lafayette Reynolds on HBO's True Blood. I knew I'd seen those gorgeous eyes and lovely voice somewhere. And it hit me soon enough.
Go see this movie. It will lift you up and make you cheer.

Big bowl of feel good lift you up diamonds....