Nov 29, 2016

First Chapter: Here Comes the Sun by Nicole Dennis-Benn

Every Tuesday Bibliophile by the Sea hosts First Chapter First Paragraph, Tuesday Intros sharing the first paragraph or two, from a book you are reading or will be reading soon.

Today's book I got yesterday from the library after seeing it by chance. I'm really enjoying it, a book set in Jamaica, written by a Jamaican-American writer and teacher now living in Brooklyn.
Here Comes the Sun by Nicole Dennis-Benn, June 2, 2016, Norton
"Capturing the distinct rhythms of Jamaican life and dialect..." Margot works at a hotel in Montego Bay to support her mother Delores and her younger sister Thandi, whom she wants to further her education to lift herself out of relative poverty.

Margot herself is a clandestine member of the gay community and will probably have to leave the homophobic island culture at some time. As I read along, I'm waiting to see if this happens.

First paragraph:
The long hours Margot works at the hotel are never documented. Her real work is not in answering the telephones that ring off the hook, or writing up delinquent housekeepers for sleeping on the beds and watching TV when they're supposed to be cleaning. Her real work is after hours when everyone had bid their goodbyes and piled up in the white Corollas --robot taxis -- at the massive gate of the resort, which will take them home to their shabby neighborhoods, away from the fantasy they help create about a country where they are as important as washed-up seaweed.

What do you think? Would you read on?
 

Nov 27, 2016

Sunday Salon: Older Books and New

Welcome to the Sunday Salon where bloggers share their reading each week. Visit The Sunday Post hosted by The Caffeinated Bookreviewer.
Also visit It's Monday, What Are You Reading? hosted by Book Date.

I read Jamaica Inn years ago and am rereading a 2015 reprint of this mystery/romance about smugglers in 1820 Cornwall, England. It's just as intriguing as I remember though I did notice now that one of the characters seems much more modern than the others in his action and speech.
Jamaica Inn by Daphne Du Maurier, republished September 1, 2015 by William Morrow Paperbacks.

Another book on my desk is
The Fall of Heaven: The Pahlavis and the Final Days of Imperial Iran by Andrew Scott Cooper, August 2, 2016, Henry Holt. This one I am reading slowly as it's a history book, very detailed history of the man, his empire, his rule, and his death, yet written in a way that is interesting and easy to read. I see it as a tragedy of sorts.

A galley of a new book, the first in a few weeks, arrived.
My Last Lament by James William Brown is described as "a poignant and evocative novel of one Greek woman's story of her own and her nation's epic struggle in the aftermath of World War II." It's written in the first person, which I don't normally like, but the story does look intriguing. It highlights the Greek folk art of lamenting, its history, and the people who serve as "lamenters" and is an "eulogy to a way of life." I am looking forward to it, thanks to Berkley Books. It is to be released March 2017.

How was your Thanksgiving holidays? I ate at a relative's house and avoided having political disagreements.
 

Nov 20, 2016

Sunday Salon: Kindle books and Other Books

I bought the ebook, Domestic Violets by Matthew Norman, after a recommendation from Lisa of Southern Girl Reads.
If I like it, I'll try his new book, We're All Damaged. It's been a while since I've read a novel by a male author who wasn't a mystery writer.

My current read is The Good Daughter by Alexandra Burt, quite suspenseful so far.

A couple of books I started enthusiastically but left after reaching the middle, as I thought I could predict the direction they were headed. The books were more plot driven so the character didn't carry me through to the end. These include The Wives of Henry Oades by Johanna Moran and Love, Alice by Barbara Davis, both of which I still recommend for the plots, intriguing stories.

There are other Kindle books than Domestic Violets that I have recently bought. I haven't read many, mainly because I prefer paper books, of which the library has a ready supply.

It snowed and sleet-ed and rained yesterday. Who knows what today will bring? But it's reading weather for sure.

What are you reading this week?
Welcome to the Sunday Salon where bloggers share their reading each week. Visit The Sunday Post hosted by The Caffeinated Bookreviewer.
Also visit It's Monday, What Are You Reading? hosted by Book Date

Nov 18, 2016

Book Beginning: The Good Daughter by Alexandra Burt

The Good Daughter by Alexandra Burt, February 7, 2016, Berkley
Book beginning:
They stopped once for the night in Albuquerque. The name of the city intrigued the girl, so she looked it up in the encyclopedia she carried with her. It was her most prized possession. (from an uncorrected proof. Final copy may differ)

Page 56:
.... Arranged two inches apart like cookie dough on a sheet pan is a carpet of cricket carcasses.

Book description: The tale of a young woman in search of her past, and the mother who will do anything to keep it hidden...

Memes: The Friday 56. Grab a book, turn to page 56 or 56% of your eReader. Find any sentence that grabs you. Post it, and add your URL post in Linky at Freda's Voice. Also visit Book Beginning at Rose City Reader.

Nov 15, 2016

First Chapter: How to Party With an Infant by Kaui Hart Hemmings


How to Party with an Infant by Kaui Hart Hemmings, August 9, 2016
"A quirky single mom in San Francisco tiptoes through the minefields of the "Mommy Wars" and manages to find friendship and love."

First paragraph:
The afternoon holds the beautiful promise that it will soon be over. A rusty gold light falls through the clouds, the cold air has an even sharper edge, and white halogen headlights from cars on Fell and Oak make the little playground light up like a stage. Mele Bart eats cashews from a Dora cup and watches her daughter play on the purple slides.

Ellie, a wonderful mistake, is two and a half years old.

This is my current read. What's yours?

Meme: Every Tuesday First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros are hosted by Bibliophile By the Sea. Share the first paragraph sometimes two, of a book you are reading or plan to read soon.

Nov 13, 2016

Sunday Salon: I'd Rather Read than.....

I have decided to stop watching too much political news so I don't find myself rolling my eyes and generally acting like a teen. To control myself, I will stay with reading good books and watching Christmas movies on TV.

Here are two new arrivals I'm reading right now: contemporary fiction and a mystery.

Love, Alice

Love, Alice by Barbara Davis, December 6, 2016, Berkley
... new Southern women’s fiction novel set in Charleston, about forgiving the past one letter at a time...

Egg Drop Dead (Crackleberry Club, #7)

Egg Drop Dead by Laura Childs, the 7th in the mystery series, December 6, 2016, Berkley
Suzanne, Petra, and Toni—co-owners of the Cackleberry Club CafĂ©—track down the culprit in another whodunit.

Welcome to the Sunday Salon where bloggers share their reading each week. Visit The Sunday Post hosted by The Caffeinated Bookreviewer.
Also visit It's Monday, What Are You Reading? hosted by Book Date.

Nov 10, 2016

Clever Cozy Mystery Titles

These covers and titles caught my eye! I hope they are as good to read! Notice they are both food related!

The Good, the Bad, and the Guacamole by Rebecca Adler, a Taste of Texas Mystery, November 1, 2016. Tex-Mex waitress and part-time reporter Josie Callahan and her chihuahua Lenny solve the mystery of the country singer Jeff, found face down in a bowl of guacamole. 

A Killer Kebab: A Greek to Me Mystery by Susannah Hardy, November 1, 2016. 
Georgie Nikolopatos looks forward to fixing up her Greek restaurant and historic landmark—until her renovation plans hit a fatal snag. In other words, she finds a body and has to solve the murder!

Recipes are included in both these books! Yum!


Nov 5, 2016

Sunday Salon: Bookish Cozy Mysteries

Welcome to the Sunday Salon where bloggers share their reading each week. Visit The Sunday Post hosted by The Caffeinated Bookreviewer.
Also visit It's Monday, What Are You Reading? hosted by Book Date. 

It's been a while since I've featured cozies. Here a few with bookish themes.


Twice Told Tail: A Black Cat Bookshop Mystery by Ali Brandon, November 1, 2016.
At Pettistone's Fine Books,  an anonymous bidder is offering a suspiciously high price for an antique book—and Darla the owner doesn’t need her cat Hamlet’s special senses to know that something isn’t quite right. (publisher)
A Likely Story: A Library Lover's Mystery by Jenn McKinlay,  November 3, 2016.
Library director Lindsey Norris has befriended two elderly brothers, Stewart and Peter Rosen. She enjoys visiting them in their treasure-filled, ramshackle Victorian on Star Island until she discovers that Peter has been killed and Stewart is missing. (publisher)
I finished The Blue Bath by Mary Waters-Sayer, May 3, 2016, St. Martin's Press and was torn between giving it a 4 or a 5. I wasn't very sympathetic to the protagonist toward the end but could understand the conflicts she had, having to choose between her young son's future and her sentimental and demanding former artist lover. 

My next read is a detective novel, 
Diana's Altar by Barbara Cleverly, an Inspector Joe Sandilands, Scotland Yard, mystery, well written with interesting plots. I hope I'll like this one as well as many of her former ones. 
The book: Doctor Adelaide Hartest bears witness to the final moments of a dying stranger. The situation becomes very complex, as Scotland Yard is soon to find out. 

Nov 4, 2016

The Blue Bath by Mary Waters-Sayers: Book Beginning

Moving between the London art world and the days of a love affair in a dusty Paris studio, life and art bleed together for now married Kat Lind and her former artist lover, David. 
The Blue Bath by Mary Waters-Sayer, May 3, 2016, St. Martin's Press

Book beginning:
Prologue
Entering the front hall, Kat saw it coming, but could not stop it. The swift and silent arc of the sledgehammer came to its own abrupt end as it smashed through the smooth plaster wall. She squeezed her eyes shut, momentarily stunned by the force and the sound of the impact ....
Chapter I: 
Sometime after the arrival of the second builder and the ensuing chorus of intermittent hammering, Kat left the house and made her way through Holland Park, glad for the relative peace of its wooded paths. The tops of the trees strained to catch the low, rose-colored sun....

Page 56:
Jorie spoke French to anyone who was not immediately identifiable as English.

Comments: Half-way through this library book and really liking it so far. 

Memes: The Friday 56. Grab a book, turn to page 56 or 56% of your eReader. Find any sentence that grabs you. Post it, and add your URL post in Linky at Freda's Voice. Also visit Book Beginning at Rose City Reader.