Friday, June 26, 2009

Friday Update

Still in the hospital. Might have gone home today (though foot still swollen and I can't walk on it but the infection is lessening) but I have now had an allergic reaction to a medication I've been given; don't know which one. I'm covered in spots. I can't begin to convey how annoying this is and how tired I am of this. I can tell you I'm pretty much over my anxiety about shots -- it's IV flushes that make me cringe now.

Started reading THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE by Steig Larsson. This is second of the Millenium Trilogy. Here's a description:

Lisbeth Salander is a wanted woman. Two Millennium journalists about to expose the truth about sex trafficking in Sweden are murdered, and Salander's prints are on the weapon. Her history of unpredictable and vengeful behaviour makes her an official danger to society - but no-one can find her. Mikael Blomkvist, editor-in-chief of Millennium, does not believe the police. Using all his magazine staff and resources to prove Salander's innocence, Blomkvist also uncovers her terrible past, spent in criminally corrupt institutions. Yet Salander is more avenging angel than helpless victim. She may be an expert at staying out of sight - but she has ways of tracking down her most elusive enemies.

This was published this year and 608 pages. It's keeping my attention which is an important thing.

Here's what's on my wish list for the next 48 hours:

  • I want to be able to walk.

  • I want to have this allergic reaction to go away.

  • I want to leave this hospital and go home.

  • I want to never encounter this kind of infection ever ever again.

I don't think any of this list is unreasonable.

Of course, one cannot blog in this particular space/time without mentioning the passing of Michael Jackson. I never liked his music but I acknowledge his immense talent and the huuuuge impact he made on entertainment and pop music. Isn't it sad that all people can really say is how tragic, what a tragic life. Wouldn't you hate that when you died? I mean, it was a LIFE, moment by moment for 50 years.

And Farrah Fawcett passing on the same day. Again, wouldn't it be sad that the most she's remembered for is the way she looked 30 years ago? She lived a life more than that. Some may say that at least she is remembered by millions of people and not just an obscure nobody like the rest of us who pass over but is that really that important? I think not.

They say it comes in threes. Ed McMahon was the first of this triplet and not only was he the second banana for most of his career, he comes in third or is barely there. One of my nurses was saying "yeah, they come in threes and somebody died a just a little while ago but we couldn't remember who it was...."

For some stupid reason the theme song from Fame popped into my brain now. Make it go away.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Day three of hospital stay. Well, two and a half. It is believed that my infection is the superbug, MRSA, but no way to confirm. One antibiotic that is first used to fight it, I took for five days with not strong enough results. It is responding to the IV antibiotic treatment of MRSA. I'm getting IV antiobiotic twice a day to go after the infection in my left leg/foot. There is improvement but not enough to go home yet. What I think will come out of this for me is that I will become a germaphobe. :) I may become fanatic about it having seen the dark side.

MRSA is a monster staph bug; a huge problem EVERYWHERE but I'm suspecting the following: I've read that there may be a 10 day incubation period. About 10 days prior to the beginnings of feeling ill, Steve and I were in airports and airplanes to and from Dallas. How often have you seen them clean the people areas? How often do they really clean the insides of planes after all that humanity and germs have been through? Just makes you shiver if you think about it which why you don't think about it and don't really take precautions. Not anymore for me, baby!

Finally finished reading THE AWFUL SECRET by Bernard Knight. Will be starting A MOMENT OF SILENCE by Anna Dean. This is first of two in series featuring amateur sleuth Dido Kent in England-1805. Here's a description:

1805. An engagement party is taking place for Mr Richard Montague, son of wealthy landowner Sir Edgar Montague, and his fiancee Catherine. During a dance with his beloved, a strange thing happens: a man appears at Richard's shoulder and appears to communicate something to him without saying a word. Instantly breaking off the engagement, he rushes off to speak to his father, never to be seen again. Distraught with worry, Catherine sends for her spinster aunt, Miss Dido Kent, who has a penchant for solving mysteries. Catherine pleads with her to find her fiance and to discover the truth behind his disappearance.

LJ liked it a lot so I hope to as well. We have similar tastes.

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is the Mayo Clinic's info on prevention of MRSA infection found at

Let's keep it healthy out there, people. Trust me.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Blog not abandoned, just...

Sorry, not posting. My leg condition, which turned out to be cellulitis, has an infection believed to be MRSA. I'm currently checked in the hospital for the IV antibiotic. Oy.

Will check in soon.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Update the 2nd

I've had some good upticks and some downward ticks.

The downs:
  • Got sick on the pain medication yesterday and threw up a bit and had to fight nausea for a lot of the day until it was out of my system.
  • Last night's antibiotic felt like it "opened" on the way down the throat and burned all the way. Suffering pain internally from that today. Hope that will be gone by tomorrow.

The ups:
  • I think the cellulitis is receding. Slowly, yes. I'm still not walk on my foot/leg. But there is less pain and maybe I'm seeing less red at near the knee.
  • I was able to get to the shower by myself this morning and got most of a shower and washed my hair. It had been since Wednesday. Oy, did that feel good and improve my outlook for a while.

It's a good thing nursing wasn't the family business that Steve had to go into: he sucks at it. Basically, I think he may resent the whole situation but at this point, I can't help that. I feel like I'm nagging when all I'm doing is asking for food to be brought. He's not really speaking to me and avoiding me right now so I haven't been able to talk to him about what's going on.

I haven't done a whole lot of reading yet but did crack open the Bernard Knight for a bit last night. And I watched the DVD of The Scarlet Pimpernel. I was afraid it wouldn't have held up too well over the years; it was a little cheesy but not bad for a sicky to waste some afternoon hours yesterday. Both Anthony Andrews and Jane Seymour tended to strike poses a lot, knowing how beautiful they looked. :)

If I can find where the clicker went to, I hope to watch Next Food Network Star tonight. I also hope I'm able to sleep tonight -- that one has been difficult the last few days. Oy.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, June 19, 2009


Well, the doctor was right when he said it would get worse today. The infection redness and swelling has spread. But the good news is that my temp is gone and I don't have the constant pain when I lay down. I have HUGE pain when I sit up or try to walk. Oy. I've never given birth so I don't have that to compare to but this is, I think, the worse pain I've felt. I don't recommend getting an infection/cellulitis. The worse thing is hopping/hobbling the ten feet to the bathroom -- painful and takes up so much energy. Uff da. Otherwise, I don't go anywhere. Poor Tug didn't get a walk yesterday because Steve had to help teach a gun class right after work. I'm hoping he will walk him after work today.

Unfortunately, Steve is of the "just throw some dirt on it" tribe so this isn't his shining moment. But maybe he'll appreciate what I do around here, eh?

I haven't read yet much. Yesterday I slept and stared at the tv off and on. Today I've been catching up on the Internet and I do have a couple DVDs that I love and haven't watched in years that I may pop in later: The Scarlett Pimpernel and Ivanhoe -- both with Anthony Andrews. Love love love them. And I've been saving them, I guess, for just such a time. And there's a nap or two in my future. I'm stuck here in bed for a couple more days and my concentration will return so I'll probably get to reading again.

Tonight is a new episode of Say Yes to the Dress.

Stay healthy, people.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, June 18, 2009

It's just a bad week

So I didn't mention my leg yesterday. Long story short: went to the Doctor's Walk In this morning. I have chronic psoriasis and a current outbreak apparently got infected on my left leg. So now I've got cellulitis; very painful between knee and ankle., red, hot, etc. I'm on antibiotics and a pain killer and can't walk without hobbling for a few days. I have a 102.7 temp tonight so my body is fighting -- go away infection!

So I can't leave the bed at least today and tomorrow, should be getting better by Saturday-ish. My posting may be hit and miss.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Empire Strikes Back

Ah, I referenced the wrong movie yesterday apparently. My flu-thing relapsed so therefore it is more like The Empire Strikes Back. Bleh.

It's evening now. Steve's shooting. I watched a little of a guilty pleasure movie, Rock Star, starring Mark Wahlberg. I don't know why I like to watch that stupid movie but there it is. Still reading the Bernard Knight book. I hope to sleep a heckuva lot better than I did last night, uff da.

We had a great gullywasher of a rainstorm this afternoon. Love those. Makes everything smell so good afterward and so dramatic while it's happening.

See you tomorrow....

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Back from the Lost Day

Sorry for not more fully participating yesterday. A 24-hour bug got me: head and neck ache, body aches and tired. I felt just terrible. You know that scene in Indiana Jones (Raiders of the Lost Ark) when Harrison Ford really was very sick and he had to do the fighting scene with the big guy with the sword so all he could was shoot him? That was me.

Yesterday morning I decided to stop fighting it and laid down for most of the day. By last night it was just head and neck ache. Today it was a little neck ache and my ears are stopped up which usually happens if I over-medicate and I did take a lot of aspirin. So I'd say I'm 90-95% better.

I'm currently reading THE AWFUL SECRET by Bernard Knight. This is 4th of 13 in series featuring Sir John de Wolfe, the crowner (coroner), in 12th century Devon, England. Here is a description:

Gilbert de Rideford is a Knight of the Temple of Solomon, and an old acquaintance from Crowner John's crusading days. He claims to have come into possession of a secret that could shake Christendom to its foundations - and he desperately needs John's help to escape from the secretive order of warrior monks. Suddenly swept into a world of religious intrigue and dangerous politics, Crowner John finds himself undertaking a life-threatening mission to the Island of Lundy - inhabited solely by notorious pirates - until finally the awful secret itself is revealed.

It has 356 pages and was published in 2000.

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is Wow! Women on Writing found at

So not much else going on. Last week's meeting number one said no because of a situation with Jody so waiting on the second. I need to get to the grocery store soon. TV - I might check out the Jada Pinkett-Smith show on TNT about being a nurse, Hawthorne. I've got about 20 minutes to read some emails before starting to make dinner. I'm making my special chicken that Steve likes and it cooks for an hour and putting it together takes a few minutes itself so I'm going to end it with, yes, the chicken is good and worth the effort. :)

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, June 15, 2009

Not today

Sorry, I'm fighting some kind of flu thing. Won't be posting today.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A day of rest...

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is a wonderful, gentle visit to Northern New England: Letters from a Hill Farm can be found at Books and recipes and nature ...

I'm currently reading DEATH OF A SQUIRE by Maureen Ash. This is 2nd of 3 in series featuring Bascot de Marins, a Templar Knight recovering from imprisonment in the holy lands, in the early 1200s, in England. Here is a description:

Templar Knight Bascot de Marins is spending time at Lincoln Castle with his young, mute servant, Gianni. He is still recovering from the torture he suffered at the hands of the Saracans during his years of captivity in the Holy Lands. King John and King William of Scotland are on their way to Lincoln Castle and everything must be perfect to receive them. The body of young Squire Hubert de Tournay is found hands bound and hung from a tree in the forest. The murder doesn't appear to have been done by poachers as the squire has not been stripped of his fine clothing or accessories. As castellan of Lincoln Castle, Lady Nicolaa de la Haye is responsible for the fife and ensuring peace within it, thus asking Bascot to uncover the killer. Young Squire Hubert de Tournay was possessed of a temperament only a mother could love, and it appears that only person grieving his death is his mother. In the autumn of 1200 A.D. in the county of Lincoln, his body is found hanging from a tree in Sherwood Forest and the gruesome murder incites a torrent of suspicion, falsehoods, and relief. Hubert couldn't keep his hands to himself and wasn't above using force or blackmail to coerce a maiden's compliance. Was his death a vengeance killing by peasants angry at the assault of one of their own? What about his fellow squires who hated him and might have secrets that Hubert would have been pleased to exploit? Or was his end perpetrated by one of the victims herself? A complex web of deceit and anger surrounds the death of the unsavory Hubert, and the inhabitants of Lincoln rely once again on Templar Knight Bascot de Marins to unravel the murder and dispel the pall of distrust that ensues.

It was published in 2008 and has 256 pages.

Seems to be a little overcast today. Steve mowed yesterday and has water going on the lawn. I have some clothes laundry to complete today. I don't think anything is really a "must do" so perhaps the day with otherwise be spent just enjoying it - a novel concept, eh? Well Sunday is a day of rest, is it not.

Steve watched the movie The Spirit last night. I tried to watch it but it was really pretty bad. Visually it was lovely; acting, story and directing were baaaaadd. I left 20-30 minutes into it because I just couldn't stand it anymore. I haven't gotten Steve's full assessment of it yet. I think he enjoyed the badness of it because I heard him chuckle a couple times before I abandoned him.
Tv tonight may include Food Network's Next TV Star or whatever that's called. Or Gene Simmon's Family Jewels. After dinner (whatever that will be) and so forth, I'll probably flop in the living room and read while Tug chews on something at my feet until he dozes off.

So I've been cruising around the Net this morning, reading email and so forth. Lots of mystery book reviews to check out -- a fairly good roundup can be found at I got sidetracked on Smart Bitches Trashy Books in a long discussion about the ugly reality of medieval life versus stuff not mentioned in romance novels. Lots of quite knowledgeable back and forth there. And I keep meaning to list more books on Paperback Swap so maybe I can get that accomplished today. One has high hopes... :)
Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Saturday, June 13, 2009


Sally in Australia has awarded me the Literary Blogger Award ... Sally, that was so nice! Thank you!

The Literary Blogger Award acknowledges bloggers who energize & inspire reading by going the extra mile. These amazing bloggers make reading fun & enhance the delight of reading! The Rules:

1) Put the logo on your blog/post.
2) Nominate up to 9 blogs.
3) Be sure to link to your nominees within your post.
4) Let them know that they've been nominated by commenting on their blog.
5) Remember to link to the person from whom you received your award.


1. Jen's Book Thoughts:

2. Lesa's Book Critiques:

3. Bernadette's Reactions to Reading:

4. Eurocrime Blog:

5. Classic Mysteries:

There are so many great reading blogs out there but these are at the tops. Book readers are a special group and we love to share our passion (and feed our own addiction). Check these out.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

David Eddings

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is interesting: a blog that reviews teas. The Tea Review blog can be found at "The Tea Review Blog is an online community of tea lovers and tea reviewers to share their love of tea with one another. Tea reviews are posted quite frequently, and we love sharing information about teas and tea-related items! We have a growing panel of independent tea reviewers, who are tea lovers from all walks of life and who do not manufacture tea."

I read a couple days ago that fantasy writer David Eddings died at age 77. He was one of the greats and The Belgariad is one of the must-reads in SFF. The Belgariad and Mallorean series follow the adventures of the orphaned farm boy Garion as he fulfils an ancient prophecy. Eddings turned to fantasy after he spotted a copy of The Lord of the Rings in a bookshop, and saw that it was in its 73rd printing. After his epiphany with Tolkien, when he realised the fantasy field was under-served but potentially extremely lucrative, he began to use the map to plot the world of Garion, Belgarath the Sorcerer and his daughter Polgara, and their fellow cast of thousands.

1. Pawn of Prophecy (1982)
2. Queen of Sorcery (1982)
3. Magician's Gambit (1983)
4. Castle of Wizardry (1984)
5. Enchanters' End Game (1984)
6. Belgarath the Sorcerer (1995) (with Leigh Eddings)
7. Polgara the Sorceress (1997) (with Leigh Eddings)
8. The Rivan Codex (1998) (with Leigh Eddings)


1. Guardians of the West (1985)
2. King of the Murgos (1988)
3. Demon Lord of Karanda (1988)
4. The Sorceress of Darshiva (1989)
5. The Seeress of Kell (1991)


1. The Diamond Throne (1989)
2. The Ruby Knight (1990)
3. The Sapphire Rose (1991)


1. Domes of Fire (1992)
2. The Shining Ones (1993)
3. The Hidden City (1994)

Dreamers (with Leigh Eddings)
1. The Elder Gods (2003)
2. The Treasured One (2004)
3. The Crystal Gorge (2005)
4. The Younger Gods (2006)

As David once wrote, ‘If you don’t have a quest, you don’t have a story. A quest gives you an excuse to dash around and meet new people. Otherwise, you stay home and grow turnips or something.’

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, June 12, 2009

Enjoy the Day!!

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is Follow the Reader found at This is a new blog for those who read & recommend books. Follow the Reader is sponsored by NetGalley but you'll most often hear two independent publishing voices: Charlotte Abbott & Kat Meyer.

I'm currently reading AND JUSTICE THERE IS NONE by Deborah Crombie. This is 8th of 13 in series featuring Duncan Kincaid, a Scotland Yard superintendent, and Gemma James, a Scotland Yard Inspector in London. I'm trying to read one a month. Here's a description:

Gemma James is adjusting to professional and personal changes that include her eagerly sought promotion to the rank of inspector--and a future now intricately entwined with Duncan Kincaid. But her new responsibilities are put to the test when she is placed in charge of a particularly brutal homicide: The lovely young wife of a wealthy antiques dealer has been found murdered on fashionable Notting Hill. Dawn Arrowood was six weeks pregnant. Her lover, Alex Dunn, a porcelain dealer in London’s bustling Portobello Market, appears absolutely devastated by her death, but Gemma’s the main focus of investigation is soon Karl Arrowood, who had the most powerful motive for killing his unfaithful wife. But this case sets off warning bells for Duncan: it’s far too similar to an unsolved murder in which an antiques dealer was killed in precisely the same way and when the escalating violence claims yet another victim, he and Gemma find themselves at increasing odds with each other--as two separate investigations become linked in the most startling of ways. Their hunt for a killer will traverse the teeming stalls of the city’s antiques markets to a decades-in-the-making vendetta of history and hatred that has been honed to a flawless, deadly point. To solve this case, Gemma and Duncan must walk a merciless razor’s edge through a place where true justice will be a long time coming.

It was published in 2002. The hardcover version that I'm reading has 336 pages. As a side note, I hate book reviews that reveal too much of what is going to happen in the story. I just found out who is going to be killed next in this story and that just spoils the unfolding, darnit.

On tv, we have the final game of the Stanley Cup to watch tonight. And a new show to check out on TLC, The Masters of Reception.

I had lunch today with Robyn, a former boss. Things are really rough at the museum right now and she shows it in the way she carries her body and her whole demeanor. She is in deep emotional pain/bitterness and I felt sorry for her. Lunch itself was nice (I had the muffaletta sandwich) and I hope I got across to her that it's okay to have friends and not everyone has an agenda. Keep your fingers crossed that Jody and I hear good news next week.

It is a beautiful 75 degrees out with white fluffy clouds moving across very blue skies. The weekend is supposed to be the same with a chance of thunderstorm on Sunday. Steve mowed the backyard last night -- it was waaaayyy past due -- so it looks good again but a bit dry compared to the neighbors who consider lawn maintenance a competitive sport.
I remember as a kid, my sister and her friends would slather in oil and lay out all day in their bathing suits ... soaking up those rays, smelling of coconut and wearing sunglasses and flipping over periodically. Back then, of course, the sun wasn't dangerous. And we could ride bikes without helmets. Oh, I won't get going on a rant here, I promise. I don't remember ever really getting into that laying out in the sun thing. Too hot. Wrong body for swimsuits. :)

I don't think we have anything specific planned for this weekend. I guess we'll deal with it as it comes, eh? Enjoy the weekend!

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, June 11, 2009

You can't see me reading

One of the problems for this blog is that I've been reading in the evening ... a whole book therefore I don't really talk about what I'm reading. You've lately only been seeing that I'm in the process of choosing. I'm a fast reader and the books I've read in the past couple days were rather on the light side so I get through them quickly. So yes, I'm once again in the middle of just ending a book and figuring out what's next. I have from the library, Andrew Pepper's first in series called THE LAST DAYS OF NEWGATE. Here's a description:

A story of high intrigue and low politics, of brutal murder and cunning conspiracies, set against the backdrop of a fascinating period in British history and introducing an ingenious, pragmatic, and unforgettable hero. St. Giles, London, 1829—three people have been brutally murdered and the city simmers with anger and political unrest. Pyke, sometime Bow Street Runner, sometime crook, finds himself accidentally embroiled in the murder investigation but quickly realizes that he has stumbled into something more sinister and far-reaching. In his pursuit of the murderer Pyke ruffles the feathers of some powerful people and, falsely accused of murder himself, he soon faces a death sentence and the gallows of Old Bailey. Imprisoned and with only his uncle and the headstrong, aristocratic daughter of his greatest enemy who believe in him, Pyke must engineer his escape, find the real killer, and untangle the web of politics that has been spun around him.

Though published in the UK in 2006, I believe this has only recently shown up on this side of the pond. 400 pages. We'll see if this is the chosen one. :)

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is Wordplayer found at Author Toni McGee Causey calls this site better than a master's course in writing.

Today I ran some errands: bank, post office, library, another bank. Walked Tug a little early since it was so nice out. Tomorrow I'm having lunch with Robyn from the museum. I should figure out where the restaurant is, eh?

I got an email about a one day outdoor digital photography class via the art museum that sounds a bit interesting. It would be next Saturday so there's time to contemplate it.

Not much in particular on tv, I think, so maybe some more reading tonight.
Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Midweek meandering without substance

Here's an interesting Blog/Website of the Day: LIFE OF PI author Yann Martel has vowed that every two weeks "for as long as Stephen Harper is prime minister of Canada," he will send Harper "a book that has been known to expand stillness." I believe there are 57 entries thus far.

Had a good meeting with Jody today so now we wait. Otherwise, I stopped for groceries at Walmart and dropped off books at the library. Walked Tug in pretty good weather. Steve goes shooting tonight and I think I'll figure out what I'll read next since it appears to be nothing on tv for me this evening.

I don't know if it will be the one, but I picked up China Mieville newest, THE CITY AND THE CITY. Yes, it's still surreal SFF but he's added a crime fiction element to it. Here's a description:
Inspector Tyador Borlu, a lonely police detective, is assigned to the murder of a young woman found dumped in a park on the edge of Beszel, an old city, decaying and mostly forgotten, situated in an unspecified area on the southeastern fringes of Europe. But Beszel does not exist alone; it shares much of the same physical space with Ul Qoma. Each city retains a distinct culture and style, and the citizenry of both places has elaborate rules and rituals to avoid the dreaded Breach, which separates the two across space and time. This unique setting becomes one of the most important and well-developed characters in the novel, playing a pivotal role in the mystery when Tyador discovers that his murder case is much more complex than a dumped body, requiring “international” cooperation with the Ul Qoman authorities.

So we'll see. I also have many books in series I should be reading so I'm not hurting for possibilities: Deborah Crombie, Alys Clare, Carola Dunning, Susanna Gregory, Rennie Airth, Reginald Hill, etc., etc.

I watched the premiere episode of Nurse Jackie; a new series on Showtime starring Edie Falco. I don't know what to think about it yet. Probably VERY realistic about the world of nursing in the big city. There are quite a few medical shows starting now, perhaps as a fill-the-void measure now that ER is gone. TNT is starting one with Jada Pinkett in the starring role. I can't remember the other one right now. And they ALL are not "pretty" depictions of the medical world.

Tomorrow, I don't believe I need to go anywhere -- oh, a couple drop off errands but that's it. I plan to relax ... and maybe get a head start on cleaning or laundry.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Just an "enh" kind of day

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is Mack Captures Crime found at

Not much happening today. Jody and I had a meeting today that went well; we have another tomorrow. I walked Tug, went to the bank and now I'm reading emails. Tonight we have Game 6 of the Stanley Cup playoffs to watch. Hopefully Pittsburgh won't embarrass themselves like they did the last game, sheesh.

I haven't yet chosen my next read. I don't know what I'm quite in the mood for yet.
It's just an "enh" kind of day.
Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, June 8, 2009

More stories, please

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is a clip from Due to a rain delay, the two college baseball teams help kill some time: Dance Off USF vs Uconn 2009 Big East Baseball Tournament as seen on PTI found at

I finished THE KING JAMES CONSPIRACY by Phillip Depoy yesterday. It had interesting elements that weren't executed as well as I would have liked. I also read THE GUERNSEY LITERARY AND POTATO PEEL PIE SOCIETY by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. Marvelous book I didn't want to put down and I rarely did until it was done. Here's a description:

1946 Britain. Winding up her book tour promoting her collection of lighthearted wartime newspaper columns, 30-something Juliet Ashton casts about for a more serious project. Opportunity comes in the form of a letter she receives from Mr. Dawsey Adams, who happens to possess a book that Julia once owned. Adams is a member of the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society—no ordinary book club. Rather, it was formed as a ruse and became a way for people to get together without raising the suspicions of Guernsey’s Nazi occupiers. Written in the form of letters. Juliet's quips are clever, the Guernsey inhabitants so enchanting and the small acts of heroism so vivid and moving.

288 pages. I love epistolary novels when done well and this one was charming.

And now on to something else; I don't what that is yet. Steve has another board meeting tonight. I have a new season of The Closer to watch and will check out the premiere of a new series called Nurse Jackie on Showtime.

I had coffee with a friend, Omi, this morning and lunch with Jody and another friend, Chris. I've walked Tug in the drizzle and now have some emails to catch up on.
More of the Mystery Read-A-Thon memes:
Tell us more about your mystery/thriller reading habit. When did you start reading this genre?
I think most kids start with the usual (see next question) but for "adult" reading, I started to read gothic romances at a young age (5th grade), discovered SFF via DUNE by Frank Herbert in junior high, and adult mysteries in high school.
What was your first experience with the genre?
The usual: Trixie Belden, Nancy Drew, The Hardy Boys, Encyclopedia Brown, etc.
The ever popular Nancy Drew or Agatha Christie? Or someone completely different?
Trixie Belden. But read all the others. Preferred The Hardy Boys to Nancy Drew for some reason. Also read Cherry Ames, The Dana Girls, The Three Investigators, etc.
How did you discover it?
For adult mystery reading, I was babysitting one night for the Jelineks. The kids were in bed and the parents weren't going to be home for awhile (was it New Year's Eve? I dunno.). I was browsing their books in the builtin shelves in the living room (and having already by then read the steamy parts in WIFEY by Judy Blume) started reading CURTAIN by Agatha Christie. This book is actually Poirot's last case and has quite a twist at the end. Hooked.
Do you exclusively read mysteries and thrillers or do you mix it with other genres?
I mix genres but I'd say the common thread is that there is a "quest": solve the crime, save the kingdom, get the guy/girl. There has to be an overarching goal. I'm not a fan of contemporary fiction most likely due to that.
If you switch genres, which other genres do you read?
A little romance, a little SFF, a little nonfiction, a little straight historical.
Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Reading ...

I'm currently reading THE KING JAMES CONSPIRACY by Phillip Depoy. This is a standalone that was published last month and has 394 pages. Here is a description:

The turning of the wheel by the tilling of the wheat.
With these cryptic words, a conspiracy is set into motion that threatens the new translation of the Bible ordered by King James I, and the lives of the scholars working on it. What if, in the original Hebrew gospels, there were secrets so shocking that revealing them could be disastrous for the Church of England? And what if there had been a fiendish conspiracy to prevent the creation of the King James Bible, a conspiracy of men so desperate to keep the buried secrets from being exposed that they would stop at nothing, not even murder? In 1605, in Cambridge England, a group of scholars brought together to create a definitive English translation of the Bible finds one of its members savagely murdered by unknown hands. Deacon Marbury, the man in charge of this group, seeks outside help to find the murderer, to protect the innocents and their work. But the people who offer to help are not who they claim to be and the man they send to Marbury—Brother Timon—has a secret past, much blood on his hands, and is an agent for those forces that wish to halt the translation itself. But as the hidden killer continues his gruesome work, the body count among the scholars continues to rise. Brother Timon is torn between his loyalties and believes an even greater crisis looms as ancient and alarming secrets are revealed—secrets dating back to the earliest days of Christianity that threaten the most basic of its closely held beliefs.

This book has many elements that I love: great time period, religious and political intrigue, an academic setting, a crime to be solved... I would, however, label this book more of a "historical thriller" than a "historical mystery" because of its pace and somehow lack of depth. In most historicals I feel more involved somehow in the story. This is interesting but somehow shallow in its historical-ness. It's not a real complaint -- I couldn't put it down because it flowed so well -- but I usually feel pulled into the world more.

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is the Mystery Read-A-Thon found at Today is apparently the day to participate. However, I think EVERY day is a read-a-thon so will do my usual reading habits. :) They do have a couple of interesting memes. Here's one:

What books do you want to read during this read-a-thon?

I'll be reading the above mentioned THE KING JAMES CONSPIRACY by Phillip Depoy. I'm almost halfway through so I hope to finish it tonight.

How many books do you hope to finish?

One. For some reason I'm getting blisters on my foot (started with wearing uncomfortable but pretty shoes in Dallas and getting rubbed the wrong way and walking too much in them but having no other options) and I'll have to ask Steve to walk Tug today -- and actually stay off my feet today -- so I'll have extra time.

What (if any) breaks do you intend to take?

Oh the usual for changing laundry, letting Tug in and out, getting drinks, etc.

Do you generally read lots of mysteries and thrillers or are the one of the many genres you like?

As many have discovered, I prefer mysteries. Nearly exclusively -- I'd say 95 percent of the time. I dip into straight historical, the occasional romance, or interesting nonfiction every now and then. I follow way too many series to let me stray too often.

What are some of your favorite authors?

My favorites sub-genres are historical mystery, police procedural, private eyes, classic mysteries, and psychologicals. British crime fiction, Eurocrime fiction... Within those there are soooo many good authors.

Historical mystery: CJ Sansom, CS Harris, Arianna Franklin, Margaret Frazer, Bernard Knight, Susanna Gregory, Tasha Alexander, Deanna Raybourn, Deryn Lake, Patricia Wynn, Laurie R. King ...

Police Procedural: Reginald Hill, Stephen Booth, Peter Robinson, John Harvey, Deborah Crombie, Elizabeth George, Ed McBain, JD Robb ...

Private Investigator: Lawrence Block, Bill Pronzini, Marcia Muller, Janet Dawson, SJ Rozan, Sue Grafton ....

It may be easier to list who I DON'T like, eh?

If you could make us all read one mystery or thriller for this read-a-thon, which one would it be and why?

I would love to have someone read a historical mystery and fall in love with that subgenre but mostly I think people should read what they like as long as they READ. Reading is so important and so entertaining and I feel sorry for those that don't do it or were trained from a child to not value it.

Do you prefer series or stand alones?

I prefer a good story and I don't care in what form it comes.
It's dark and rainy and even cooler today so it's lovely reading weather. Have a good rest of the weekend.
Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Rainy Day People

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is BiblioBuffet found at This is a beautifully laid out site. "BiblioBuffet is for readers with independent minds who want to use their reading time well, who are not averse to trying something new, who demand quality regardless of genre."

I finished THE MERCHANT'S PARTNER by Michael Jecks last night. There are some slightly perhaps-out-of-period moments that took me out of the story on occasion but overall a fine historical mystery in a large series. Even if I read one once a month, it would take me two years to get caught up -- a lovely prospect for one with a voracious reading habit such as mine. Next up, I'm not sure which of my library choices will be up first. I'll decide sometime today.

It is a perfect cool, dark, damp day out here in Billings. Though I wish Steve could mow the lawn because it's really nasty out there, I feel like I don't need to go anywhere or accomplish anything other than laundry and some vacuuming. It is a day for reading or movie watching and being in your warm comfy clothes and drinking a cuppa something hot and munching on popcorn while the smell of something delicious is slow cooking in the kitchen. Ya know wadda mean?

Ah, tonight is Game 5 of the Stanley Cup playoffs so that is what we'll be watching. Fingers crossed and good vibes out to Pittsburgh who are now being competitive in the series. Finally.

Otherwise, I'm playing on the Internet today, making up for lost time while traveling. And that's about it.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, June 5, 2009

How did it get to be Friday already?

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is called The Knowledgeable Blogger found at Dick Adler, crime fiction reviewer for the Chicago Tribune and Barnes&, picks the best of new releases -- and a few old ones.

First off, my lost luggage was delivered this morning. Yay!!

Secondly, today is my Mom's birthday. We went to lunch today at Red Robin and I had my usual Fajita Fiesta Pollo Salad which was very good. Happy Annual Event, Mom!

Some other things that happened on the Dallas trip:

1) When we arrived in Dallas on Sunday it was 96 degrees. The hotel all four days was freezing cold. Monday evening when we had the dinner on the patio thingy, it was gorgeous as the clouds were moving in and cooling things off a bit but not completely overcast. It rained both Tuesday and Wednesday. In fact, Tuesday morning at 5AM we were awakened by a very loud thunderstorm.

2) As incentive for people to attend all eight seminars, the Overhead Door people has everyone fill out a slip for every seminar you're in. These slips go into a drawing for prizes at the very end and you must be there to win. Last year, we got nothing. This year, I was putting out vibes for the big flatscreen tv. However, I won a Panasonic camcorder. What I'll do with it, I don't know. We don't have kids to record or go on vacations so... I may keep it; I may sell it. I'm not sure yet.

I'm still reading the Michael Jecks book. I have two books waiting for me that I picked up at the library yesterday: DAEMON by Daniel Suarez and THE KING JAMES CONSPIRACY by Phillip Depoy.

Tonight I have Say Yes to the Dress to watch on tv but otherwise nothing else so I may get to read some. Steve may have a board meeting to attend. This weekend I'll be doing laundry and cleaning and such but otherwise we don't have anything planned. It's supposed to be lovely reading weather: high's in the 40s and low 50s and rainy. Woo hoo!

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Where O Where has my luggage gone?

We got home last night from Dallas (actually Frisco, TX) where we were at an Overhead garage door regional convention (Steve and his dad have a franchise). We were able to get on an early connection and got home around the time we would have taken off from the very beginning. Instead of Dallas-Denver-Billings and get home at midnight we were able to go Dallas-Chicago-Billings and got in at 8. But my bag didn't make it. Normally this is a carry on bag but Steve got so many tshirts and jackets for the guys at the shop that it created a situation where I had to check my carry on. Ugh. Still no word on it.

The flight from Chicago to Billings was on one of the smaller United Express jets but it was a new one; it only had 130 hours on it so the crew was kinda excited to be on it. I know this because we were in the very last row and one of the flight attendants had to sit right next to me so we chatted. The other "fun" thing was that there was a drunk guy on the flight who was a pest like not wanting to put on his seat belt and talking loudly before he finally fell sleep. And get this: he was in the exit row and they didn't move him. What if he decided he wanted out at some point or there really was an emergency? Oy. And the flight attendant got mad at him early on because he used the restroom and apparently his aim wasn't that great so she had to clean it.

And we were able to pick up Tug from the kennel that much earlier. I missed him and I'm sure he was glad to be home.

I was able to meet a friend who lives in Frisco, Maddy Van Hertenbruggen, and have a quick breakfast with her yesterday morning. That was a bonus and a very good time.

I don't fly well. I get motion sick on merry-go-rounds so you can imagine flying. Mostly it is the landing part where I struggle. I don't eat several hours ahead of time and take drammamine but I still have to fight the nausea. I can't help it; I can't fight it; but I do what I can to lessen it. I have to add Dallas as a not great place to land or take off -- lots of turbulence. Denver is always bad. Chicago turned out to be not bad but I did my usual looking straight ahead and breathing deeply and steadily. I can't see the motion outside the window or I get sick. I can't turn my head to talk to someone or I get sick. Poor Steve was looking out the window and loving the view and wanted me to look but I couldn't. Landing in Billings last night turned out to be not bad at all this time (I credit the pilot) but I made the mistake of talking to the flight attendant and getting ill. And sadly, the illness woozy feeling usually sticks around for a day or so after flying so today I'm having periods where I have to stop moving or sometimes lay down. I guess I can't be a world traveler, eh? And I don't really have to fly that much these days, just once a year typically, just enough to remind me that I don't do it well at all.

So I read and finished THE SCARECROW by Michael Connelly on the trip. A sort of stand alone featuring the world of journalism and a serial killer. I like Connelly's writing always but the ending was a bit too coincidental. I then started my other take along, THE MERCHANT'S PARTNER by Michael Jecks. This is 2nd of 26 in series featuring Simon Puttock, medieval West County bailiff, and Sir Baldwin Furnshill, ex-Templar Knight, in Devon, England. Here's a description:

When the mutilated body of midwife and healer Agatha Kyteler is discovered in a hedge one frozen wintry morning, it at first appears the lack of clues will render the crime unsolvable -- until a frightened local youth inexplicably flees his village and a hue and cry is raised. Sir Baldwin Furnshill, once a Knight Templar, however, has doubts about the boy’s guilt, and enlists friend and bailiff of Lydford Castle, Simon Puttock, in the hunt for a murderer. But what they seek lies somewhere on the darker side of the village of Wefford, beneath layers of jealousy, suspicion, and hatred -- and the buried truth could prove fatal to anyone who disturbs it.

It was published in 1995 and has 384 pages.

Today's Blog/Website of the Day is Juxtabook found at Books, book buying, book selling, book dealing, reading, reviews, libraries, literacy, education, teaching English Literature and all matters bookish

On tv tonight we'll be watching Game 4 of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Go Pittsburgh! Of Game 3, we were able to watch the last 7 minutes from the hotel bar after the Annual Report from the Overhead Door CEO and the awards banquet.

So please, keep your fingers crossed that my bag shows up. I'd hate to have replace stuff.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster