This is a Good Book Thursday, July 14, 2022

This week I read Rest in Pink. Over and over and over again. One of my pre-orders came in and I read that and it was okay, but it’s part of a series and I think the author just got tired. And I got a book on pasta from one of the BookBub listings and now I am all fired up to put everything I have on noodles. Actually, I’ve always been a fan of putting everything I have on noodles, it’s just now I know America’s Test Kitchen’s way of putting everything on noodles. I’m educated.

What did you read and learn this week?

78 thoughts on “This is a Good Book Thursday, July 14, 2022

  1. I read The Origin of Storms, by Elizabeth Bear. It’s fantasy and more – there are dragons and wizards and automatons. There are rivals (who are cousins) for the thrones of the parts of the former empires; there are battles and spies and entities Who Are Not What They Seem To Be. And snark – there is most definitely snark.

    It’s the 3rd/last book in The Lotus Kingdoms trilogy, which comes after The Eternal Sky trilogy. Both trilogies take place in the same fictional universe, and some characters appear in both.

    The previous Lotus Kingdoms book, The Red-Stained Wings, came out in 2019; it took me a bit to remember who was who, where was where, and what was what, since I hadn’t thought to reread the previous books.

    Overall, I liked TOoS, and both trilogies as a whole.

  2. I am working my way through The Way of Integrity by Martha Beck. I’m not much of one for nonfiction or self help but I have read her before and this came highly recommended. It’s good. It’s about integrity not in the moralistic sense, but as in wholeness, like a cup’s integrity allows it to hold liquid. It seems timely, with some of the personal stuff going on for me at the moment.

      1. Definitely. It’s a little bit Buddhist and a little bit woo-woo, but it is positive and giving me new ways to look at problems. I think that I will recommend it to my work friend.

        1. The other one I would highly recommend, not that I have a huge selection, but this one made a difference for me is The Untethered Soul. Lost me a bit at the end where it becomes a little more woo-woo, but overall meant so much to me at a very bad time in my life.

  3. Books I’ve read this week:

    The Jennifer Crusie Collection, through the first four books. “Welcome to Temptation”, “Tell Me Lies”, “Crazy For You”, and “Fast Women”. Still to go, “Faking It”, “Bet Me”, and “Maybe This Time”. This might have been my favorite collection of all time if it had included “Manhunting”. (And “Sizzle” but don’t tell Jenny.)

    Dance of a Lifetime Books 1 and 2 by Frank Downey writing as Don Lockwood. This is an uncountable re-read. I was reading this book as the author wrote it, back at the turn of the century. (God, I feel old.) It’s either three books or six books, depending on where you put the breaks. Also, he needed a good editor and a better proofreader, but that’s hindsight.

    The Shepherd’s Crown, Terry Pratchett. Yes, I finished it. I cried a bit. Now I’m ready to tackle Raising Steam, for which Crown had spoilers. It took them long enough, but they finally figured out how to display the footnotes (as pop-up screens) in Kindle. Some of Pratchett’s footnotes made the entire book they were in.

    Variations on a Theme Book 3 through chapter 113 of an anticipated 142. Grey Wolf categorizes the book as “coming of age.” A 55 year-old man is transferred to his own body (in a different universe) at age 14, and has to live his life over, and that’s “coming of age?” Science fiction, maybe. Alternate History, maybe. “Do-Over,” definitely.

    Official Weigh-In Day #65: 254.8 pounds.

  4. I read Best Knight Ever – a retelling of part of the Camelot story – modernized and focussing on the Galahad/Trystan part. A bit silly and a little too long but fun nevertheless. If you liked Lisa Henry’s Red Heir you’ll like this.

    Also read Chacha1’s Triple X, which I enjoyed, especially since it’s an alternative relationship, and I read Shattered Glass which was an unholy mess of a book, no idea why it makes so many best of M/M lists.

    1. It does feel like Red Heir, doesn’t it? I assumed it was the same author for a bit. Sorry to hear that it drags. I haven’t picked it back up yet. 😛

  5. I never comment about what I’m reading but I read your comments and feel a little intimidated because you follow arcs and style and such and I don’t pay that much attention to things… although perhaps I do and just don’t know it 🤔

    At any rate, I read something this week that was just fun to me because the characters just made me laugh out loud on more than one occasion.

    My Kind Of You by Tracy Brogan is the first of a series of 3 books. The main characters were pretty solid but the odd townspeople are what sold me on it. They were just quirky and fun and made me want to travel to the fictional island they live on.

    What’s odd to me, and maybe someone has an idea why the author did this, is the first book was written in 3rd person but the 2nd book is written in 1st. The 2nd book’s main character is the sister of the 1st book. I find that a little odd but I need to know if bat crazy Vera VonMeisterburger finds funding for her bat house so I’m gonna keep reading.

    1. None of that analysis stuff is necessary to decide if something is a good read.
      I’m just a wonk.
      A good read is a book you liked reading.

  6. I’m happily making my way through Eclipse the Moon by Jesse Mihalik which released on Tuesday. If you like grumpy/sunshine pairings this is a good one. Plus they are having space/espionage adventures.

    After this one, then on to Julie Anne Long’s new one, You Were Made to be Mine, and then some Jeannie Lin. I read the Lotus Palace books out of sequence and now want to go back to the beginning.

    I think it must be the new LoTR series coming out from Amazon that is inspiring me but I’ve been reading a lot of Silmarrilion fanfiction. There are some powerful stories in that fandom.

  7. I’m listening to the Beechwood Harbor Magic Mysteries by Danielle Garrett and narrated by one of my all time favorite narrators, Amanda Ronconi. The books are really good but I could listen to this woman read the phone book.
    I just started Call Me, Maybe by Cara Bastone. So far it’s good with a fair amount of snark.

  8. I’m re-reading Susan Howatch’s Starbridge Series, 6 books pertaining to the trials & tribulations of people involved with Church of England during decades of the 20th century. The author’s first installment appeared in 1987 & concluded in 1995. I find this very entertaining as well as informative. There are hundreds of pages to get through, so my summer reading list is pretty full.

    1. I loved that series. A fascinating topic and such an interesting choice for a series.

  9. I just finished a new book by Jenny Colgan, An Island Wedding. It’s the latest in a series set on a tiny fictional island north of Scotland. Loved all the quirky characters as usual, and the happy yet bittersweet ending made me hope there is another book coming soon. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that the author had apparently finally been discovered over here (she’s published in the UK, mostly) and the book was actually in my local library.

    1. This is definitely one of those books where YMMV! I think Colgan is a good writer but I was extremely irritated by the ending for the secondary couple. The man just keeps jerking the woman around, book after book after book. No. Just no.

      1. Sorry to be such a downer, Deb, but it really bothered me. I think I’m going to have to stop reading that series. But that’s just ME! I am glad you enjoy it!

  10. I comfort read the Turner series by Courtney Milan. Is it a comfort read when the main characters are all scarred by an insane (and not just a little bit) mother? They are still some of my A-list historical romances.

    Then for something completely different, I’m also reading The Widow Queen, an historical novel translated from Polish dealing with king and queens and dukes of Poland, Denmark, Norway, and Sweden in the eight- and nine hundreds. It’s a little ponderous but fascinating.

    1. Hi, Brenda! Amazon just emailed me that a preorder has been fulfilled:

      Items Ordered
      Loving Between the Lines (SILVERBERRY SEDUCTION Seasoned Romance)[Kindle Edition]
      By: Brenda Margriet

      Thought I’d let you know. 🙂

    2. Love the Turner series as well. I think maybe there’s something very comforting that people can find happiness and fulfilment norwithstanding a bad beginning.

  11. I half read/half listened to This Time Next Year by Sophie Cousens and definitely recommend. It is a little heavy on flashbacks but overall a very satisfying read with reasonably understandable obstacles to two very likable characters connecting romantically. There are a couple of surprise witty lines that made me literally laugh out loud. And it even includes a short rom-com run with a wink to the 90’s.

    This is the second book I’ve read by the author and I am impressed with her intelligent style, understandable conflicts and low angst.

  12. I am looking forward to reading and working through The Writing Diet: Write Yourself the Right Size, by Julia Cameron. Her The Artist’s Way was a revelation when it came out, so I hope this will also be just as good. I’ve ordered some really cool gradient colored paper tablets from Levenger (on sale, now!! ) for my morning pages, and a new pen that matches it. Heyer’s False Colours is coming in the same shipment as Cameron’s book, and several of you recommended it, so it’s a “sure thing”. Why did this auto correct go to False Clouds? So odd. I enjoy hearing your takes on the books you read. I would appreciate it, if there is a lot of gratuitous violence, having that flagged. There’s enough of that in real life these days, for me! You are all amazing!

    1. Ha! I’ve been dipping back into The Artist’s Way. Given my schedule and some handwriting challenges, I’ve turned “morning pages” into “naptime paragraphs.” Still surprisingly effective.

      Have fun with your cool paper and pens!

  13. I reread A Psalm for the Wild-Built by Becky Chambers, and then her new one, A Prayer for the Crown-Shy. I enjoyed them, although the prices are outrageous – they’re novellas, and really parts if a longer story, which I wish had been written and published as one book. My other beef (which I know I’m not supposed to have) is the way she mangles English by using ‘they’ as her protagonist’s pronoun. Since I inevitably read this as a plural – and there are a pair of characters together through most of the narrative – I have to keep rereading a sentence or two to work out who she means. It’s annoyingly clunky. (I’d rather she used ‘xe’ or a similar gender-neutral but singular pronoun.)

    I’m now reading Katherine Addison’s The Grief of Stones. Enjoying it, although as usual her use of complicated names and titles means half the time I’ve no idea who she’s talking about. It would read far better if she’d kept the made-up titles to a minimum; she does use English for some – prince, marquess, dowager, etc – and the narrative would be stronger with more such translations. ‘Master’/‘Mistress’ for ‘Mer’/‘Merrem’, for example.

    1. You’re allowed to beef.
      It’s not like we have rules here, aside from “be nice to each other.”

    2. Thank you! I have the same problem with Chambers use of “they.” Glad to hear its not just me. I really like her work, but the pronouns are problematic.

    3. It is very au courant to refer to a non-gender specific person as they/them, and not he/she. I understand the reasoning but it does drive me a little bit crazy since I read it as a plural also. The only time I have ever been really comfortable with not using he/she is in the Murderbot Diaries because Murderbot so clearly has no idea which pronoun to use for someone and could care less. Someone’s sexual identity never comes up on the radar.

      1. Thinking this through, I remember all the fuss when Ms. first came into common usage and it was identified as a “feminist” issue. The business grammar professor that I had at the time thought all the hysteria was ridiculous because business professionals since the 1940’s had been attempting to have a non-marriage specific way to refer to women in a professional setting because it was irrelevant if they were widowed, divorced, married or single. In that context, a way to easily refer to someone without identifying what their sex or sexual orientation is seems to be a logical progression.

        That said, the question becomes what the author is attempting to convey by the use of they/them? It should not matter in most social contexts what the characters sex is. It does matter to the reader however in building up a picture of the character. As I mentioned in Murderbot, in many cases I had no idea of the gender of some of the people Murderbot was dealing with because Murderbot used he and she indiscriminately, frequently for the same person. Also ze/hir/hirs, ze/zir/zirs. Since the book above is by Becky Chambers, I assume she is referring to some future society where to be polite, you have a non-gender specific way to refer to people and aliens. And given that Ms. is currently used without giving rise to confusion or question, we will probably learn to use one or all of the above pronouns. I admit that I probably won’t but I am considered an old woman and am not a writer, so I can be stubborn if I want to be.

        1. I’m getting used to it.
          My big problem is that I used to be an English teacher and drilled proper pronoun usage into students for five years (before that I taught art). And “they” is plural and therefore should not be used as a singular.
          But the language also needs another freaking pronoun and we don’t have one so we’re gonna have to use “they.” It’s the only intelligent, inclusive thing to do.
          Language changes as society changes. And since that societal change is for the better, I’m smacking my inner punctuation geek with a bat and using “they.”

          1. They is historically correct for singular and gender uncertain though isn’t it? I’m pretty sure I’ve seen it used that way over the years.

          2. Same. That’s what I meant by my caveat: I’m baulking, but the change is probably inevitable. Confusingly, Chambers also uses ‘Mx’ and ‘xir’ in the same story, without any explanation of what the difference between the two styles of non-gender-specific pronouns might be.

            I’ve actually been relaxed about the occasional use of ‘they’ in the singular; it’s when it’s used all the time that it becomes problematic – because the meaning’s often unclear, as demonstrated in these stories.

            And I’ve always used ‘Ms’, but still have to assert that choice every time.

        2. Back in my undergraduate days, I was taught that a woman whose marital status you don’t know is properly addressed as “Miss,” in business correspondence, on the grounds that every Mrs. was originally a Miss. This is before Ms. came along.

      2. Suzanne Palmer uses “ey eir” for the “¿genderless? alien in the Finder books. Green, furry, five legs….

      3. Anne Leckie did a good job with her Ancillary Justice SF novels, set in a culture that referred to everyone as ‘her’. Most of the time I had no idea whether a character was male or female, except in situations where they were speaking a different language.

        1. Yes, I loved what Anne Leckie did. It was really interesting trying to work out the gender of the people involved, but also looking at it from the point of view of the protagonist, who didn’t care.

    4. I agree with you on both counts. “They” as a singular pronoun just doesn’t work for me. As for the names in Addison’s novels – yikes – the least said the better.

    5. An alternate view of ‘they’: i found it easier to get used to when I thought of ways in which I already use they as first person singular: e.g. someone called for but they didn’t leave a message…

      1. Yep, this. We use singular they a lot already. And I love the names in Addison’s books. 😀 different strokes and all.

    6. Listening to the audiobook of the Goblin Emperor helped me a lot when reading her other works. It got the sounds in my head, at least for a little while.

  14. Read and ditched a bunch of samples (thank goodness for samples)

    Read “Call Me, Maybe” which I seem to recall got some “it was ok” kind of reviews here last week. Since it was cheaper than a mediocre cup of coffee I drank that morning, I gave it a try. I thought it was delightful. Ok, not timeless literature, and you could see things coming, but not annoying or stupid, which I seem to find many inexpensive book offerings. Will try another by Cara Bastone, even though the plot of the the next one looks very similar, AND has one of those obnoxious taglines on it “The swoony rom-com readers are raving about!” Does anyone else hate this kind of smarmy tag line? It’s like telling me a heroine is witty. If you have to say it, you haven’t sold it with the text. (grrrrrr)

    Also, thank you again to everyone who commented on T. Kingfisher’s Paladin series. I really liked all three, and have two other people gobbling them up. If she calls this her attempt at “fluffy”, I am scared to read the stuff that isn’t fluffy, even Clocktaur ones set in the same world, but probably can’t help buying it to see.

    1. I struggled and eventually gave up on the other Kingfishers that I have tried. Too dark . Even the nuns dying was pushing it for me.

    2. I didn’t enjoy the second love lines as much as the first, partly because the set up is very similar but I really enjoyed book 3 which has a different premise. Unless you are a completist, I’d say skip book 2 and go straight to book 3.

      1. Sword heart and a wizards guide to defensive baking are not too grim. I have not yet gotten up the nerve to read her last two books which I think are supposed to be really grim.

        1. I actually thought A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking and A Minor Mage were some of her most grim! But I am a mom of a school-age child and have been known to rant about the terrible things we ask of children living in the world today, so maybe it just hit a nerve…

          Potential (light) spoiler for Nettle and Bone below:

          I just read it, and while it did have some grimness, I really liked it. It had some great found-family moments that lightened things a little.

        2. Oh, I meant also to say that I loved Swordheart. I don’t think the two Clocktaur books were much darker.

    3. She also writes flat out horror. I don’t read her horror because I don’t do horror and though I love the fantasy, you can definitely glimpse the horror side in some of it. But she stays far enough way that I can usually deal.

  15. Books read:

    The Personal Librarian, which my mom recommended. It’s about JP Morgan’s personal librarian/art dealer (more or less), who was also a colored woman living as a white one so she could have a career. Very well done book.

    This Is Not The Jess Show by Anna Carey: girl thinks she’s growing up as a teenage girl in 1998….finds out this is not the case. Interesting one that I can’t talk about without spoiling, but you can probably get the hint as to why I read it.

  16. I did an Ilona Andrews reread while waiting for the new book, Ruby Fever, to come out in August. But I also read a new book I really liked, The Dead Romantics, by Ashley Poston. She’s done a bunch of good YAs, but this is an adult ghost story/romance. The characters are likeable and the humor is snarky and I was there for it all! Now I’m starting a Pride and Prejudice inspired modern murder mystery called Murder at Longbourn by Tracy Kiely. I’m only a few pages in but it’s really funny so I’m excited.

  17. I’ve just started a Loretta Chase book against my better judgment. (The others I’ve read bugged me, since there seemed to be a surfeit of dukes everywhere in her universe, and they were all six feet tall and haughty.) This one, though — “Miss Wonderful” — has a clothing-obsessed younger son and a heroine who has nothing but Bad Hair Days but who is hugely competent. I was charmed after the first 20 pages, and now I’ll have to change all my preconceptions about Loretta Chase. Serves me right. 🙂

    1. There’s a reason a bunch of us rave about her books. We aren’t just trying to boost her sales.

  18. I am reading “A Gentleman in Moscow,” by Amor Towles because one of my reading friends recommended it. It is very good, but I am not invested. I haven’t figured out why yet.

    I also was working through “Murder, Mayhem, and Macaroons,” which I started as a part of an Amazon Kindle challenge (Try a Vella! (serial fiction service)). This kind of book is a serial book where you read a number of chapters that all end a bit unsatisfactorily so you continue to the next one, and after three free chapters, Amazon gave me 500 tokens to keep going. Eventually they charge you tokens each time to read the next section, and it is unclear when the book ends. It is as if Dickens wrote a flirty romance because it just goes on an on. I would totally buy the book version of this story if I happened upon it, but because of this strange set up I lost focus on the story and stopped reading. Which is a shame.

  19. Finally, after two weeks of re-reads, I read something new: Thrones, Dominations by Dorothy Sayers & Jill Paton Walsh. It is not a new books – it was published in 1999 – but it was new for me. A decent mystery about Peter Wimsey and Harriet Vane, although the border line between the writings of two different authors, separated by almost a century, is clearly visible. I’m not sure which part was written by which author, but I liked the more modern part – the second part – much better.

  20. I’m currently reading What Moves the Dead (T Kingfisher), The Foundling (Georgette Heyer) and The Wood Wife (Terri Windling) because I have no focus after all hell broke loose around here. They are all excellent books. Thing I learned; this cycling between books trick works when you want to read but can’t stay focused.

    1. I love The Wood Wife. It’s such a beautiful blend of art and poetry and strange.

  21. I finished reading Iona Iverson’s Rules for Commuting by Clare Pooley and liked it enough that I requested her first novel on interlibrary loan. I am also trying to re-read Briar Heart by Mercedes Lackey, but it’s not holding my interest so it might end up back on the bookshelf. Also waiting to be read is a library book, The sweet Life of Albert Entwistle, by Matt Cain

  22. I’m reading The Cluttered Corpse, the 2nd of the Charlotte Adams, professional organizer series. But I’m not enjoying this as much as the first one. I like the friends, I just am unconvinced by the heroine’s nosing around in the murder. Her ex-friend the detective keeps telling her it’s not her job and she’s messing up the investigation, and I keep agreeing with her. Also, kind of a formless plot.
    Listening to Suzanne Palmer’s The Finder, which I remember as a good read, but the narrator is not good, like oatmeal without the good stuff.
    Read the Midnight Library for my book club. Quite short, entertaining, about getting the chance to live the lives you assume would be better than the life you have now.

  23. I read Bob Mayer’s “Shane and the Hitwoman” – it was really entertaining although it might have been even better if I had taken the time to re-read “Agnes and the Hitman” before. I must admit that the teacher in me was sometimes a little distracted by some unorthodox punctuation (particularly because now I know what a greengrocer’s apostrophe is ;o)), but the story is woven so tightly that it didn’t lose me at any point. Looking forward to “Phoebe and the Traitor”.

    In the meantime, I turned towards Deb Blake’s “Doggone Deadly”. Nothing but good times ahead.

  24. There are many people who have told me that reading fiction is a waste of time and (I know you all agree) all of those people are wrong.

    I was reminded of that this week, rereading Glitterland by Alexis Hall. I took two attempts to read this book the first time – couldn’t get into it, but now I love it. It pulled me up on some of my unthought of prejudices, while still being a perfect romance. I’m a better person, I hope, for reading it. Darian is so lovely.

    I needed it because I’m also reading Atonement by Ian McEwan, a chapter at a time because it needs the space to deal with what an outstanding writer he is, and also because it’s agonizing. There are no heroes in his books, just people who make mistakes because they’re human and it’s just so good and also just so awful.

    1. There are many people who have told me that reading fiction is a waste of time and (I know you all agree) all of those people are wrong.

      You say that as though wasting time is a bad thing. That’s such a Protestant Work Ethic way to feel.

      If you have time on your hands, you could spend it cooking or cleaning or helping the homeless, or volunteering at a library or political rally. It is your time – spend it as you see fit. Time using the mind is never wasted.

    2. I can’t face that ending, so I’ve never read it. You’re a braver reader than I am.

      1. I’ve accidentally caught the end of zhe film. It still haunts me.
        I will not watch the film nor read the book.

  25. This week I DNFd three things, one of which was billed as a YA ‘remix’ of Treasure Island. I kept plodding through pages of description (garments, structures, ships, food) waiting for something to bloody well HAPPEN … gave up at 20%. I have read Treasure Island. Things Happen. Harrumph.

    New novella from K.L. Noone, ‘The Twelfth Enchantment,’ is a nice precursor story to her novel ‘Magician.’

    Along with those, 7 novels, including a re-read of Jay Hogan’s ‘Up Close and Personal.’

    Among the most memorable of the week: from Harper Fox, ‘The Salisbury Key,’ which if you like your M/M with tons of triggers has got, I think, all of them.

    Favorite book of the week, ‘Never Been Kissed’ by Timothy Janovsky, which is a New Adult M/M small-town romance featuring just-out-of-college former friends who slowly reconnect and become more. No sex on the page; the POV character has not only recently come out, he’s discovering that he’s demisexual. Most of the book concerns his job at a drive-in theater and attempt to get a local long-forgotten filmmaker her Big Hometown Premiere. There are supportive friends and family; bravely stepping outside of comfort zones; talking about what went wrong before and the selectivity of memory; facing down a city council over proposed demolition of the theater by local businessman who happens to be the father of the love interest. All the threads are neatly wound up at the end and the central relationship feels valid. 🙂

  26. An old cookbook, but fun to reread, SERVE IT FORTH, compiled by Anne McCaffrey, with recipes contributed from all over the science fiction community. I can recommend MZBeans, as created and made by Cynthia McQuillin, which I’ve often had! Some of the recipes are a bit dated — we don’t usually make a cornstarch slurry to thicken a pasta sauce now, we just reserve some of the pasta water. Definitely a fun read, and a community cookbook.

    THE HARPER’S QUINE: A Gil Cunningham Murder Mystery, by Pat McIntosh. A long-time favorite, and, as with the other books in the series, especially notable for the excellence of the opening sentence! I finished that, and am now into THE NICHOLAS FEAST.

    “At the May Day dancing at Glasgow Cross, Gilbert Cunningham saw not only the woman who was going to be murdered, but her murderer as well.”

    “Gil Cunningham said later that if he had known he would find a corpse in the coalhouse of Glasgow University, he would never have gone to the Arts Faculty feast.”

    1. Additional note: THE UNKEPT WOMAN, by Allison Montclair, the next Sparks & Bainbridge mystery, will be released July 28 in the US.

  27. July so far was crazy busy. I read stuff but nothing to recommend.

    DH though has found a very interesting in our newspaper. He knows I’m always interested in al sorts of historical stuff. He might have remembered that I was into what happened at Waterloo.
    Anyway, there’s an archeologist at Glasgow Uni who aims to uncover what happened to all those killed and left on the battlefield of Waterloo. The article included a link to his paper in an open access journal. Fascinating stuff, see https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/15740773.2021.2051895

    1. That was fascinating reading/scanning! I hate to say it, but I never, ever thought to wonder where bone meal came from. Yikes! I’ll never read stories about Waterloo the same again.

  28. Read ‘Catalysts’ by Kris Ripper, which is the first of a continuing poly romance series and really enjoyed it, only to discover somehow I acquired books 1, 4, 5, 6 but am missing books 2 and 3 which I will have to remedy very soon.

    Elizabeth Knox’s ‘The Absolute Book’ has been sitting on my shelf for a while as its rather a tome but I ended up really enjoying it. It starts out with a young woman whose sister has been killed by a car and spirals into an arcane thriller with libraries, demons and the Sidhe. Apparently sparked by the author’s experience of her brother-in-law dying as a result of vehicular manslaughter and how after that the world no longer felt safe, yet the book ends on a wonderfully hopeful note.

  29. Lack of focus continues to break up my reading, but I did listen to Black Sheep all the way through, which reminded me how much I liked the story, and the self interested hero. I immediately went looking for Behold, Here’s Poison, but haven’t found it yet so picked up Envious Casca instead and promptly got stuck four chapters in. Sigh. Back to listening – at least that way I’m finishing things!

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