Howdy! I'm here to share a little bit of this and a little bit of that from my life recently. Hope this format will work well with everyone. I'll try to do this every week or two just to catch up on things - life in general, life in reading, and maybe a bit of what's coming up.
Life in General...
Last weekend was our Labor Day Holiday here in the US. We had my husband's family over for a cookout on Monday and also celebrated a couple of family birthdays. It was a fun time for all, especially because my hubby decided he would not only cook the burgers, but make these tasty little salted caramel brownie trifle things. He found the recipe somewhere and they were very good. Maybe not so great for birthday candles, but we managed.
On Friday, I began a new volunteering opportunity at one of our local libraries. It was a little tiresome to get my schedule and their orientation schedule sorted, but I finally began actually 'working'. It's not a complicated deal at all - shelving books and other materials. Well, I've done that before. In fact, that was my first actual paid job at the Austin Public Library, being what they called a 'page'. It had a been a while since I had shelved almost 3 hours straight. Part of it was in the children's section and shelves are low. Lots of up and down and up and down. I decided I should have worn my fitness tracking device to see how many 'steps' and 'calories' I expended. Next time.
Life in Reading...
Mystery book group met on Wednesday evening and it was one of our 'food' meetings. Always fun. We had 4 new people and after we convinced them that they could indeed stay and eat, even if they hadn't brought anything, all went well. Our theme was 'Cozies in the Kitchen' and we read cozy mysteries that had a food theme. There was the option of bringing a food item that you found in your reading. It went pretty well and some did prepare recipes they found in their cozy reading. I was not so inspired and my contribution was guacamole and tortilla chips. Guess it was OK as very little was left. Ha!
I'm not a big cozy reader anymore, but I did reread 3 books that I had enjoyed in the past. Jenn McKinlay's first Cupcake Bakery Mystery, Sprinkle With Murder, is a fun one. This series is set in Scottsdale, Arizona, and is a humorous one. Great cupcake recipes and a few bodies. Jenn also writes several other mystery series.
Karen MacInerney (local author to us in Austin) writes The Gray Whale Inn Mysteries, which begins with Murder On The Rocks. Protagonist Natalie Barnes leaves Central Texas and takes a chance on a Maine bed and breakfast called The Gray Whale Inn. Lots of B&B food offerings and a nice mystery as well. I like this series.
Lastly, I reread Julie Hyzy's first White House Chef mystery, State Of The Onion. Olivia Paras is an assistant chef at the White House and this series is filled with all kinds of inside info about the kitchens, guests, and staff doings in the White House. It a little 'tougher' because of including Secret Service and threats of all kinds. Sadly, this series is at an end, but several of our group have read it and give a thumbs up.
We had some interesting comments made about food cozies in general and specifically. Some of our group enjoy cozies and some are not big fans. Along with some tasty treats and new members, we had a lot to talk about.
Life in Three Pines...
I recently finished reading Louise Penny's 12th mystery in her Armand Gamache/Three Pines series, A Great Reckoning. I had looked forward to this one and took my time reading it. I love the way this author tells a story, her language, her symbolism, her aims. She uses poetry very deftly and inserts it in such a way that the story flows around it smoothly. This book brought us to Three Pines, but also to other new locations. All the usual gang was included and a few more characters that I hope we see again. In each book, more and more layers are revealed and I marvel that Louise can surprise, delight, and horrify me all in one book. If you have never read a book by this highly gifted author, start with Still Life. It's a series that begs to be read in order.
Life in coming days...
I'm participating in the R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril XI during September and October. My post about it is here. Fall is the perfect time to sample mysterious, horrifying, Gothic, suspenseful, ghostly tales. If this sounds like fun to you, join in. You can sign up on Carl's blog (link in my post). I'm going to try to read at least some of the books I showed. Got lots of encouragement to pick up Daisy In Chains and The Woman In Cabin 10. We'll see what piques my interest next.
Until next time....Happy Reading!!