About Me and My Blog and Amazon Store

My photo
Langley, BC, Canada
I love to read. I love books. I like to talk about books and recommend them. I read everything including cereal boxes and junk mail! I heard once that if you're not reading at least 3 books at a time you're not reading enough! This blog will keep track of the books I've read and whether or not I liked them. It will be a little bit of everything from Christian fiction to Science fiction and fantasy. Feel free to participate by suggesting books to review and giving your comments. Occasionally I am given free books by Publishers in exchange for a review. I am not told how to review them or compensated in any way for the review.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Anne Rice Quits Christianity

I am not a fan of Anne Rice as I’ve never been into the vampire book genre. 10 years ago she gave up atheism and embraced a new found faith in Christ. After that she wrote a fairly well received fictionalized book series on the life of Christ. Again, I’ve never read it although I keep meaning to. Now that I’ve rediscovered my local library I will have to see if it has those books.

But today, it’s being reported that Anne Rice has quit Christianity. You can google the story for yourself to see what she has to say in her own words. I agree with a lot of what she says but she has generalized it too much I think. Yes, some Christians give Christianity a bad name but every group has people that they wish would go join some other group.

Christians aren’t perfect, churches aren’t perfect but in God’s wisdom and grace He has chosen the church to be the Bride of Christ. I think that concept is not taught enough in churches today. I also think that if we behaved more as brides; someone who is looking forward to seeing her bridegroom and is preparing for the best day of her life, more people would be attracted to Christ.

Anne says she’s not giving up on her faith; just on Christianity. I think that eternity could be a very long time for her if she has to live with all of us and hasn’t learned to get along. (that last part was said tongue in cheek) Because like it or not all those who have believed in Christ as their Saviour will be living with us in heaven, even if we didn’t get along on earth.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

U is for Undertow, By Sue Grafton

Sue Grafton has been creating alphabet mysteries since 1982! starting with A is for Alibi she has continued through each letter using the same female private investigator and thoroughly entertaining me with her stories.

Kinsey Milhone is a divorced 30 something private investigator. She lives on her own in a converted garage apartment; eats pickle and peanut butter sandwiches for dinner and runs for exercise. She is an orphan and in the last few novels Grafton has gradually been revealing more of Kinsey’s background. In this book, the mystery she is solving and the issues that Kinsey is having with her newly found family are almost parallel. The story moves back and forth between the case she is working on and the personal discoveries she is making about her own life.

As I’ve said before I enjoy reading series but often, especially in a long one like this, the characters become tired and the stories seem to be repetitive. I’ve not found that with this series and each book reveals something new about the main character.

This mystery revolves around a cold case that involves a child kidnapping. Someone comes to Kinsey with new clues and she becomes personally invested in trying to figure out what happened almost 20 years ago.

This is not an action packed thriller kind of book. The mystery is solved through solid investigative work. At some point the reader is aware of what happened before the investigator is but that doesn’t seem to spoil the ending.

With only 5 letters of the alphabet left, it will be interesting to see what V, W, X, Y and Z will stand for. The Alphabet series is highly recommended.

Monday, July 19, 2010

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larrson

This is the final book in the trilogy that started with the Girl with the Dragon Tatoo.

Again this is a big book and it's one of the few times that I will say that all the length might not have been necessary. I got bogged down in a lot of the detail and since much of it concerned Swedish policing and politics I'm not sure it was that necessary to the unfolding of the story. There is also alot of detail on the solving of the mystery and subsequent planning for the trial that happens at the end of the book. But the ending is a satisfactory conclusion of the story although I suspect that had the author lived, he may have had a few more books in mind for the series. I for one would have liked a prequel that delves into the back story of Lisbeth Salander's life as I think one of the things lacking in this series is really good character development.

So I wouldn't rate this highly as the first two but it was a good ending and you can do as I did and skip a lot of the stuff you aren't interested in!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

And the winner is

Congratulations Sheila, (sorry Tracy). If you didn't comment (and you know who you are) I still encourage you to buy the book. It's definitely worth reading.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

My First Give Away - The Heart Mender

The kind folks at Thomas Nelson gave me a second copy of the Heart Mender to give away.

Please leave a comment on this post or the last one with your email address and I will do a random draw at the end of this week. If you win the copy I will be happy to mail it to you wherever you are. And if you don't win, please consider buying the book, it's definitely worth reading and sharing with other people.

The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews

Andy Andrews had just discovered a mystery in his back yard. While digging up a dead tree he uncovers a silver button, an Iron Cross and some pictures. He’s curious and sensing there might be a story he begins to do some research. Internet searches lead to interviews and soon he has the beginning of a fascinating and mostly true account that he shares with us in the Heart Mender, A story of Second Chances.

This is a beautifully written book The transition from present day to 1942 back to present day is almost seamless. The story itself is compelling. In the Author’s note at the beginning he says “don’t read ahead”. I’m glad I followed that advice although I was sorely tempted to read the back of the book. Don’t do it, let the story move you along and you will be left gasping at the end of it.

The theme of the book is forgiveness. He has some of the most powerful words to say about forgiveness and relationships that I’ve ever read. At point one of the characters is trying to explain the concept of forgive and forget. He says “you may remember the wrong, but by choosing to forgive, you have disarmed it. Then it can no longer determine what you think, what you say, or what you do”(pg 120)

This book is easily read in an afternoon but I assure you that the concepts in it and the story told will linger in your mind for much longer.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

A Duty to the Dead by Charles Todd

Charles Todd is a mother/son writing team who have written a bunch of mysteries with a male detective. This novel begins a new series for them with a new main character, a female nurse. It's set in World War 1 and Bess Crawford has volunteered for duty serving in the nursing corps. Bess is injured when the ship she is on is fired on by a submarine and sinks. She's sent home to recover. While at home recovering she attempts to make good on a promise she made to a young officer who died in her care.

This story is driven along by the concept of the duty to the dead. She is determined to not only carry out his last wishes but to also understand them. For this she must travel to his home, live with his family and become involved in their very intricate relationships.

This is a great period novel. The atmosphere is just right, the setting and characters are spot on and the mystery is engaging. I really enjoyed this novel and will be looking to read more of this series.