Books read

or How to Avoid Bothersome Book Bungles, a new page for a new year - an attempt to keep track of what I read as the year progresses.

Last week of December 2018
Katherine Arden - The Bear and the Nightingale - brilliant, beautiful and wonderfully evocative.

January 2019
Tracy Rees - Amy Snow  - intriguing historical mystery, well written and enjoyable to read, took me a while to get into but that could be me rather than the book!

February 2019
Nevada Barr - Destroyer Angel - a return to form for the series. Violent but within the bounds of the storyline.  A dramatic and enjoyable read. E-book

Emily March - Teardrop Lane - part of the  Eternity Springs series, this is an unashamedly heart-warming romantic tale that I read in one gloriously lazy day! E-book

Emily March - Heartsong Cottage - another of the Eternity Springs series, heart-warming like the others but more of a mystery to this one. Another indulgent easy read for a thoroughly lazy weekend. E-book

Lori Wilde - A cowboy for Christmas - pure unadulterated schmaltzy romance... E- book

Carolyn Brown - Long tall cowboy Christmas - more soppiness! E-book

Michael Wood - The hangman's hold - change of pace with this one. This is the 4th and latest in the series of novels featuring DCI Matilda Darke. Well-paced, interesting main story that fully resolves but it helps to have read the others to understand the sub-stories, underlying angst and ongoing thread. E-book.

March 2019
Emily March - Reunion Pass - returning to Eternity Springs for a gentle read that eased a mizzy week. E-book.

Katherine Arden - Girl in the Tower - wonderful sequel to The Bear and the Nightingale - conjours pictures in your mind as you read and makes you both want to find out what happens next and never put it down at the same time.

Lynette Austin - Somebody like you - soft simple romance on my e-reader that was wonderful for whiling away the time in a doctor's waiting room. Finished in a single day!

Linda Lael Miller - Once a rancher - another quick and easy read of a romance. E-book

Nevada Barr - Boar Island - A dark, quite disturbing if not fully resolved tale in the Anna Pigeon series - 2 story-lines running parallel with quite an odd "unfinished"feel to the ending. E-book.

April 2019
Carla Neggers - Tempting Fate - one of her standalone novels, I read this as an e-book over several hours in hospital waiting rooms and resting up. Good engaging little mystery with a bit of romance thrown in for good measure - one of her earlier works.

Ava Miles - The patchwork quilt of happiness - pure schmaltzy romance that I finished in one long afternoon/evening - e-book

J.D. Robb - Leverage in Death - part of the long running detective series set in a recognisable future. As engrossing and brilliant as ever. I highly recommend the series - This was number 47. Another e-book

Katherine Arden - The winter of the witch - The breath-takingly beautiful trilogy comes to an end. Don't expect a traditional happy ending though as there is much sadness and melancholy here as befitting a story rooted in Russian fairytale.  The pictures are going to take a while to fade. Highly recommended.

Shirleen Davies - Angel Peak - Part of the Redemption Mountain series, this is historical romance with a touch of frontier adventure thrown in for good measure. A diverting waiting room read.

May 2019

Christine Feehan - Vengeance Road- Change of pace again. 2nd in the Torpedo Ink series. Set in periphery of the Sea Haven and Drake Sisters series but darker and more explicit. E book.

Elly Griffiths - The Stone Circle - Another atmospheric mystery in the series featuring archaeologist Dr Ruth Galloway. Strongly linked to the first book in the series and quite melancholic in places, this is a great read but you need to have read the earlier works to get the full picture and understand all the threads that come together.

Katie Ruggle - In her sights - E-Book. Female bounty hunter gets her man - and the criminals she's tracking down whilst supporting her family and dealing with dysfunctional mother. Part of a new series. Enjoyable, fast paced read that didn't tax the brain too heavily.

Christine Feehan - Dark BloodDark Crime, Dark Carousel & Dark Legacy - 4 of her Carpathian series - dark romances with lots of drama. Lycans, Vampires and hunters in pure escapist scenarios, perfect to get lost in. Just one more and I'm up to date in the series!

J.D.Robb - Connections in death - The latest instalment in the Eve Dallas series of thrillers/detective novels. I don't know how she does it but each of these stories (... and there are nearly 50 of them...) are eminently readable and thoroughly engrossing. This one got me through a 4 hour wait in a hospital waiting room on a scan day and helped keep my mind occupied over the day or so that followed.  By the way the author is also Nora Roberts!

Carla Neggers - The Imposter's Lure - The latest in the Sharpe & Donovan series of mysteries set around the world of Art crimes between Maine and Ireland. A good read with plenty of twists to keep you guessing as to whodunnit. Helps to have read the series but not essential.

Patricia Briggs - Shifting Shadows - A collection of short stories and outtakes from the supernatural world of Mercy Thompson - You need to know the series but it does contain some spoilers so check first. Entertaining and thoughtful with wry humour. An e-book.

June 2019

Ava Grace - Mountain Man next door - Light and easy romance that didn't hurt the brain cells, entertaining. First in a series. May try a few others. E-book.

Christine Feehan - Shadow Warrior - part 3 of her Shadow Riders series but the story seems to have become lost in amongst the sex scenes - series well and truly gone off track for me - won't be bothering with any of the others.

Nalini Singh - Ocean Light - Part of the Trinity segment of her Psy-Changeling Series - you need to have read the others to understand the wider context though. An entertaining and distracting love story with a twist, actually many twists and turns.

Nalini Singh - Wolf Rain - The third book in the Trinity segment of the Psy-changeling series - another entertaining love-story with a twist - this one would stand alone a bit more than Ocean Light but knowing the rest of the series would help.

Amanda Quick (Jayne Ann Krentz) - The other lady vanishes - set in the 1930s as part of her Burning Cove series - an intriguing historical mystery/romance. Enjoyed this one. Will look out for the next one too.

Robyn Carr - A new hope - Part of the Thunderpoint Bay series - a great little romance. It helps to have read others to understand some of the characters but the story itself stands quite well on it's own.

Christine Feehan - Dark Sentinel - More Carpathian adventures bringing me up to date with the series.

Ava Miles - The sky of endless blue - The final book in the Dare Valley series of novels. Read in one evening, entertaining end to a good series.

Kelley Armstrong - The city of the lost - Thought-provoking mystery set in a town of misfits and exiles that doesn't officially exist - First in a series -Rockton - , I've already started the second....

July 2019

Kelley Armstrong - A darkness absolute - second in the Rockton series of mysteries. Really engrossing read with enough twists and turns to keep you involved without getting lost. Just got to wait for the rest of the series to become available as e-books.

Susan Mallery - Where we found home - classic romance with a bumpy road to happy-ever-after.

Brenda Novak - A winter wedding  & Discovering you -2 smaltzy romances to pass the time - part of the Whiskey Creek series.

Ava Miles -Wild Irish Rose and Love among Lavender - the first two in a spin-off from the Dare Valley series. Enjoyable romance with a bit of jeopardy thrown in for good measure. Also revisits characters from both the Dare Valley and Dare River series.

Sarah Woodbury - The unexpected ally - a medieval mystery set in and amongst the Welsh court at the time of the War between Empress Maud and King Stephen in England. Book 8 in an ongoing series and the first I have read in a while - enjoyable with sufficient twists and turns to keep you involved.

August 2019

Sarah Woodbury - The worthy soldier - the next mystery in the series and as enjoyable a mix of intrigue, mystery and history as it's predecessors.

Sarah Woodbury -The Viking Prince  and The Irish Bride- part of the same universe as The worthy soldier but without Gareth and Gwen in person in the first one but they reappear in the second - a sideline into 12th century Dublin rather than Wales but as enjoyable as the rest of the series.

Joanne Harris - stories from A cat, a hat and a piece of string. A collection of stories from the wonderful author of Chocolat and Blackberry Wine that I have on e-book perfect for dipping into in waiting rooms!

September 2019

Elly Griffiths - The stranger diaries - atmospheric, cleverly plotted stand-alone whodunnit where the "who" really was a surprise to me.

Brigit Strawbridge Howard - Dancing with bees - a journey back to nature. Simply wonderfulfull review here-

Ann Cleeves - The long call - Good police procedural from the author of the Shetland and Vera series - easy to read but with sufficient twists and turns to keep life interesting. E book as easier in a waiting room and chemo suite so no pretty covers to share!

Lucinda Riley - The butterfly room - stand-alone family tale with twists and turns. Good chunky if undemanding read.

Nora Roberts - Undercurrents - stand-alone drama with lots of action and no small amount of romance. Thoroughly readable as all her novels are.

Susan Mallery - California Girls - quick and easy standalone novel. Ok to pass the time but not much else - e-book

Christine Feehan - Dark Illusion - disappointing addition to the series - think it's time to give up on these now. Actual story element brief and almost incidental to the sex writing.

J.D. Robb - Vendetta in death - another really good murder detective story in the Dallas/Roarke series. Set slightly in the future and all really absorbing reads.

October 2019

Linda Castillo - Sworn to silence - new to me crime author and a pretty good story so will be having a look for a few more by her. Set in Ohio amongst the mixed English/Amish community with a female former Amish Chief of Police. 

Melissa Harrison - All among the barley - an odd novel set in the rural England of between the wars. Picturesque but dark with murky undertones of rising fascism and family conflict and hardship. Not an enjoyable read but an interesting one.

John Lewis-Stempel - The Wood: the life and times of Cockshutt Wood - Thoroughly enjoyable diary form non-fiction -  I wrote a review here. Will be looking for more of his works once my current list is a bit smaller.

Rhys Bowen - The victory garden - Set during World War One against a backdrop of rural Devon. Gentle romance with a garden and strong female characters at it's heart. A new author to me via the Amazon kindle service. Enjoyed it thoroughly.

Anita Waller - Murder undeniable - 1st in a new crime series - a good easy read to pass the time but a bit far-fetched and simplistic in places . Not sure I'll be bothering with future titles in the series.

Emma Davies - Turn towards the sun - A really good modern story mix of romance mystery friendship and new beginnings. I thoroughly enjoyed this kindle read and will have a look for others by the author.

Grace Greene - Wildflower Heart - first in a series by a new to me author. A really well crafted story that held my attention so much I've finished it in one day. Another Kindle read and I'm off to find the second one.

Steve Robinson - In the blood  - (A Jefferson Tayte Genealogical mystery. Another new to me author courtesy of the kindle freebies. A really interesting and involving mystery that flowed well and may well end up on the take a look for the next ones. Historical misdeeds  tied to present shenanigans and deaths.

Loreth Ann White - The dark bones - A really good Canadian-set thriller and murder investigation mystery. Another kindle freebie that I'm really glad I tried. Involving and well-resolved story. Looking forward to trying a few more.

Diane Setterfield - Once upon a river - Highly recommended beautifully written tale. Review post here 

November 2019

Tom Cox - Help the witch - Wonderfully quirky set of short stories with a spooky bent. Review to follow
Elizabeth Goudge - The little white horse. Read as part of Reading Challenge. Children's book written in 1946, an interesting little read but definitely of it's time. Glad I read though.