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Monday, October 26, 2015

Semi-monthly (?) update - 10/26/15 - mostly what I've been reading....

Hello everyone!  Did you think that I disappeared forever?  Well, I almost did or rather I thought about it.  However, I'm feeling a little motivated this morning to share a bit about what's going on with me and mostly about my reading.  Here's what's up:


Life in General...

Things are still good for me healthwise.  I visited with a nutritionist and she gave me some good feedback, while mostly being really encouraging about what I'm already doing.  It was nice to hear that I'm making good choices.  The weight loss and walking more quest continues.  Isn't it funny how the pounds lost rate slows down when you start moving more?  I know - it's totally normal, but still!  I do feel good and am making it a priority to walk at least 5 days a week.  So far, so good.

We've been out of town a bit lately and will be again in coming weeks.  My area had lots and lots of rain this last weekend, like 10+ inches.  Remnants of Patricia, the hurricane that hit Mexico, plus some other moisture.  It's a good thing that we are used to rain in big bunches.  The flooding was not as bad as earlier in the year.  Seems our drought, which came right after the May floods, is over for 2015.


Life in Reading (Audios)...

The Girl in the Spider's Web by David Lagercranz - I ended up enjoying this one.  I could tell it was a different author, but I was satisfied overall.  Simon Vance's narration was lovely, as usual.  More is told about Lisbeth's life prior to meeting Blomkvist.  There was a lot of hacking, the NSA, artificial intelligence info - really an update of the tech stuff that has become a bit out of date since the first books were published.  I liked it and will read another in the series should the author write one.

Dust and Shadow by Lyndsay Faye - I listened to this book to satisfy my mystery book group October commitment.  It's an imagining of Sherlock Holmes investigating the Jack the Ripper killings.  With Dr. Watson narrating, of course.  My group has read another book by Lyndsay Faye - The Gods of Gotham - first in a series about the beginnings of the NYPD.  It was liked by almost all.  I really liked this book as well.  I'm very partial to Victorian mysteries and the author did a bunch of research here.  Also narrated by Simon Vance.

I also finished Salem's Lot by Stephen King, but I'll save my thoughts about that book for another post this week.  Currently, I'm enjoying the 3rd book in the Cormoran Strike series by Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling), Career of Evil.  Narrated by Robert Glenister, another wonderful reader.


Life in Reading (E-books or Print)...

The Divorce Papers by Susan Rieger - Had a good time with this epistolary novel.  Susan Rieger's debut book.  In a previous career, she was an attorney, a law professor, a dean of a law school...you get the idea.  The book is about a young criminal lawyer who gets saddled with handling a divorce case for one of her firm's largest clients or rather his daughter.  I loved the way the story was told.  Perfect for in between a bunch of crime novels.

Disclaimer by Renee' Knight - A decent psychological crime novel.  A woman picks up a book and begins reading and finds the story is about her life.  The usual disclaimer that is present in most books has been crossed out.  This one took a while to get going for me, but in the end, I enjoyed it.  Had hints of the 'secret', but had a good time with the journey.  Some quite odd people here.

Bliss House by Laura Benedict - Perfect book for the fall/spooky season - not exactly a haunted house, but of a sort.  Rainey and her teenage daughter, Ariel, move into Bliss House and are caught up in some very scary events.  They've lost their husband/father in an accident that has injured Ariel and left Rainey with huge amounts of guilt.  Bliss House has had lots of strange goings-on in it's past.  Rainey's family has lived there for many years.  The house kind of takes over their lives and affects all the people who come there, for whatever reason.  I liked it!

Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter - Wow, just wow.  OK, I'll confess that I may have warped or traumatized a couple of members of my mystery group years ago by having us read Karin Slaughter's first book, Blindsighted.  Several of them are still talking about it.  Ha!  I was totally caught up in Pretty Girls.  And it was very, very violent and related terrible events.  It was a little hard for even me to take.  However, I persevered.  I don't know that I loved it (can you love a story so twisted?), but I think this author has said what she felt she needed to about violence against women.  Not for the faint of heart.  Will I continue reading her books?  Yep.  Did I wish for Will Trent in this book?  Oh, yes.  Bring back Will!!  

Missing You by Harlan Coben - The discussion book for November at my mystery book group.  I'm not going to say anything else about it, other than that I enjoyed it.  I'll perhaps say more after our book group meeting in early November.  I've loved Coben's Myron Bolitar series.  This is not part of it.  A good standalone that talks about online dating sites, identity theft and cold cases.

Hello From the Gillespies by Monica McInerney - Just finished this one last night.  Another nice in-between book.  Angela, mother of 4 and wife of Nick, always sends a Christmas letter to friends and family.  She and her brood live on an Australian sheep station.  Her kids are mostly grown but her life is still as busy and frantic.  What to write in the letter?  She's always only told positive things, but lately - well, things have been tough.  She decides to write the letter and tell the truth for once.  Not send it, of course, but just have the peace of saying what she really thinks.  And then circumstances interfere - an accident, a hospital visit, life...and the letter gets sent accidentally.  Chaos ensues.  I really like this family drama book.  It was a little long, but I didn't mind that.  I've been reading so much in the spooky, dark range of books, it was time for a little gossip and family upheaval.  And yes, I'd read another book by this author.  And just may soon.


Life in Reading - What's Next...

I'll be back later in the week with at least one post about the Salem's Lot Readalong and also talk about or at least list what I've read for R.I.P.X.   I haven't done much about watching anything for R.I.P.X, but I guess that the crime shows I watch on TV would count.

As to what I'm reading now...well, I started Smoke this morning.  It's by Catherine McKenzie and is about a woman who had a career fighting wildfires.  So far, so good.  Otherwise, my choices will be whatever appeals at the moment.  Hope you are all well and I suspect I may be around a bit more to comment on your blogs if I get a chance this week.  I've been reading them mostly, but just not stopping in to say hi in the comments.  Have a good week!!

48 comments:

  1. Glad to hear you're on the right track with your health!

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  2. I am glad you received good feedback from the nutritionist, Kay. And it's good to see you posting. :-)

    The Gods of Gotham sounds interesting. I'm curious about Pretty Girls, but the violence puts me off some. We'll see if my curiosity gets the better of me. I am reading Smoke at the moment too. I started it yesterday night, but haven't gotten too far.

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    1. I'll be glad to hear what you think about Smoke, Wendy. I'm liking it so far. And Gods of Gotham was very good. There are at least 2 or maybe 3 more books in that series now. I need to pick them up.

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  3. Glad to hear you are on track with your hearth goes. It sounds like you've had great reading month. Enjoy the rest of October Kay.

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  4. Good to see you back for a bit! And - congrats on keeping with your eating and exercising goals. Don't stress too much about your rate of weight loss slowing down with increased exercise...you're probably building muscle, which weighs more than fat and you're also probably hungrier b/c of the extra movement! But those are good things. I actually gained weight when I trained for a triathlon :)
    Reading - I enjoyed The Divorce Papers as well and am curious (but also nervous b/c of the change in author) about the Lisbeth Salander book. I loved the first three.

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    1. Thanks for the encouragement, Sarah! I do know that moving more will shake things up in the metabolism area. It's a good thing. I did like the new Lisbeth book. You might try it. I was satisfied with it.

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  5. Kay! I was just thinking about you and glad to hear that all is going well. You're getting some good reading done. I don't think I've read any Karin Slaughter yet but several of her books are on my TBR. Hello from the Gillespies is on my TBR as well so I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it. I hadn't heard of Bliss House but it looks like a book I'd enjoy. Enjoy your reading and your walking!

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    1. Katherine, you might like Karin Slaughter and then she might be a little too grim for you. I do think you'd like the Gillespies book. Bliss House was pretty creepy. There is a sequel out now and I think the author is going to do a third book as well.

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  6. PRETTY GIRLS sounds so good, but I've heard several people say that it's very graphic, violent and disturbing. I'm guessing I wouldn't be able to stomach it. I'll pass, I think.

    Glad things are going well, especially with your health. Keep up the good work!

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    1. Susan, it is pretty violent. More than her usual and she's not one to shy away from grim scenes. I'm ready for another in her regular series. And thanks for the good words!

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  7. Happy to see this update and glad all is going well. I was thinking of you with all the rain in Texas and am glad to hear it hasn't been too much of a problem. Have been considering The Gods of Gotham... knowing that Simon Vance narrates is even more encouraging!

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    1. The Gods of Gotham was a good one. That Simon Vance - love his narration. Yes, we were happy with the rain, but not sure why it all has to come at once. LOL

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  8. Kay, I'm so glad to hear you're doing well. Keep up the good work!

    I've been intrigued with Pretty Girls but isn't sure if it is part of a series when it was first released. I'm a bad reader when it comes to series as many times I ended up reading books in the mid of series, lol. I'm still not sure if I want to read Pretty Girls as I too heard it's pretty violent. Maybe I just have to wait for the right mood to strike.

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    1. Melody, Pretty Girls is not part of Slaughter's series books. A standalone. Yes, I can understand being a bit wary of it. Definitely a right mood book. It's an absorbing storyline though.

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  9. I have Pretty Girls checked out right now....but my stack is soooo huge, I am also intrigued by Smoke. I read The Divorce Papers as an arc on my kindle and enjoyed it, but I think I would have liked the real book version more.

    I'm glad to read about your reading and the rest of your life whenever you have a chance to blog. Exercise and eating right are hard work. I do a good job for a while, and then have a total breakdown.

    Enjoy your traveling the next couple of weeks!

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    1. Tina, I'm enjoying Smoke. I've seen other books by the author, but have not read any of them. I'm thinking that I will put her on my list for further reading. I do understand your comment about The Divorce Papers. Sometimes those books that are told in unique ways do lend themselves to print better than e-book format. :-)

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  10. :) Enjoy your posts whenever you feel like posting!

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    1. And I appreciate that, Jenclair!

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  11. Hi Kay! Glad to hear about how you're doing and what you've been up to. Looks like you've been reading some great books!

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    1. I have been doing well on the reading front, as well as the healthy pursuits front. It's all good!

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  12. Nice update, Kay. Glad you're doing well and reading lots. There's a copy of The Girl in the Spider's Web waiting for me at the library, so I'll be picking that one up soon.

    Thanks for your recent visit to my blog.

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    1. Hope you enjoy it, Catherine. I could tell it was a different author, but I think he did a good job of continuing the characters. At least for me. Will be interested in what you think.

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  13. Lovely to have you back Kay and it looks like you've read a good varied selection of books - The Divorce Papers is one I want to read, it would be perfect to break up my normal genre.

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    1. The Divorce Papers was funny and it was definitely a good break from crime fiction. I need those from time to time. LOL

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  14. So glad to hear that your health changes are on track! I haven't read any Karin Slaughter yet but sounds like I should. Many women in an online book club I used to be a member of loved her and I have had her on my list since.

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    1. Karin Slaughter is definitely an acquired taste. Not for everyone, but if you like her, well, you really like her. Or so it seems. :-)

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  15. Glad to hear that you have enjoyed Karin Slaughter's books. I have only read Blindsighted and enjoyed it a lot, but it was intense and I wasn't sure whether to continue. I do have the 2nd in the series.

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    1. I've loved the books, but I know that not everyone does. Isn't it nice that there are so many choices for all of us?

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  16. Ah, such great books! I really enjoyed The Divorce Papers, but I think her later novels are even better. Bliss House is all sorts of creepy. I hope you enjoy it!

    Congratulations on getting your health on track and keeping moving!

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    1. Thanks, Michelle! I thought Bliss House was quite creepy. Looking forward to reading the next book, Charlotte's Story, soon.

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  17. Glad to see you are still around and doing well. I liked this update. It caught me up on what you are reading. I don't hop around the blog world much anymore. I just like to check and see if old friends are still doing well. Thanks for telling me about the Karen Slaughter book. I've been on the fence about reading that one. Take care of yourself.

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    1. I am around, Margot. Not so much posting, but I am still reading what others write. I don't always comment though. We've been out of pocket a bit and will be again soon. Nice to hear from you!

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  18. Was the Gillespies book anything like The Christmas Letters? Am very happy you are feeling better, and doing so well with your food and exercise. And am especially happy you are still writing. I just deleted 20 blogs from my bloglist - people who hadn't written for four months to 1 year. I figured, they must have quit.

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    1. Nan, the Gillespie book was not like The Christmas Letters at all, except for the fact that it was about a Christmas letter. Well and the fact that it pointed out the exaggerations that often occur in those letters. It was good, but much more lengthy than the other one.

      Yes, I'm still around. I seriously though about stopping, but decided to just post when I felt like it. I may lose some readers but that's not really the main point anyway, at least for me. :-)

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    2. I don't think you are losing any readers! Loads of comments every time you post!

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    3. I think you are right. There are quite a few faithfuls here. :-)

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  19. I've been wondering about The Girl in the Spider's Web and glad to hear that it holds up well. The thought of finding out more about Lisbeth's life is an interesting one - sounds like it can go back on my list!

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    1. I thought it was a good attempt to continue the series. I know that Larsson intended to write more books - 10 I think. Will be interested in hearing what you think about it should you decide to pick it up.

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  20. Kay so good to see a post from you. I was thinking of you with the recent rains. We had lots here in Austin too but nothing too terrible in my area. Very glad to hear you are on the right track with your health. I've sort of fallen off of my fitness routine and I need to get back on track.

    So this Karin Slaughter book is a standalone right? I've only read one of her books and it was quite graphic but I'm kind of intrigued by this one. May have to check it out!

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    1. Thanks for your kind words, Iliana. Yes, this Slaughter book is a standalone. I'd have liked to see her regular characters, but I'm hoping they will show up again in the next book.

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  21. Seems like you have been a busy reader lately! I have never read anything by King and I don't know if I am brave enough to tackle him! I'm a chicken when it comes to scary. Have you read a lot of King? Any tame recommendations?
    Thanks for stopping by the The Local Muse

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    1. Hmmm...well, he wrote a book about writing that would be tame. Otherwise, the ones I've read are all pretty much horror of some sort. It's been a while since I read any new books by Mr. King.

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  22. AAAAHHHH! So many books here that I want to read as well. I don't even know where to begin. I enjoyed Disclaimer myself. It wasn't my favorite thriller but it was good and kept me turning those pages. I've read Blindsighted by Slaughter and remember it being graphic but good. Somehow I then never continued on when the series even though I planned to. I have Blindsighted on my shelves so maybe I will reread it and then continue on with the series. (So many books, authors I want to be reading right now!) I really want to give Lindsay Faye's books a try as I just can tell that I will enjoy them. It sounds like you have been reading lots of great books!!! I'm so glad that I can always visit your blog and add a few new books to my TBR list :)

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    1. I know just what you mean. I read about a book and think 'gotta read that' and then the same with the next book. And I'm in the mood to do some re-reading as well. I suspect that may be the way my selections will go for the rest of the year. In busy times or stressful ones, I tend to read old favorites.

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  23. Yay for making good health choices! It's hard, I know, we are all getting ready to start a fairly restrictive diet here so I'm trying to prepare myself (and little guy).
    I have Divorce Papers on my shelf and should probably pick it up. I do love the cover.

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  24. Glad to hear your health continues to be good! I'm interested in The Gods of Gotham - glad to hear your book club enjoyed it.

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Thanks for stopping by! I am so happy to hear your thoughts and will respond as soon as I can. Happy Reading!