Sunday, January 31, 2010

Alphabet in Historical Crime Fiction

~ L ~

Deryn Lake

John Rawlings, an apothecary and associate of John Fielding, mostly in 18th century London

  • Death in the Dark Walk (1994) [r]

  • Dead at the Beggar’s Opera (1995) [r]

  • Death at the Devil’s Tavern (1996) [r]

  • Death in the Romney Marsh (1998) [r]

  • Death in the Peerless Pool (1999) [r]

  • Death at Apothecaries’ Hall (2000)

  • Death in the West Wind (2001)

  • Death at St. James’s Palace (2002)

  • Death in the Valley of Shadows (2003)

  • Death in the Setting Sun (2005)

  • Death and the Cornish Fiddler (2006)

  • Death in Hellfire (2007)

  • Death and the Black Pyramid (2009)

Clare Langley-Hawthorne

Ursula Marlowe, an Oxford-educated heiress, suffragette, and aspiring journalist in Edwardian London

  • Consequences of Sin (2007) Finalist 2008 Macavity Award for Best Historical Novel [r]

  • The Serpent and the Scorpion (2008)

Margaret Lawrence

Hannah Trevor, a midwife in Rufford, Maine, just after the Revolutionary War

  • Hearts and Bones (1996) Finalist 1996 Agatha Award for Best Novel, Finalist 1997 Anthony Award for Best Mystery, Finalist 1997 Barry Award for Best Novel, Finalist 1997 Edgar Award for Best Mystery, Finalist 1997 Macavity Award for Best Novel, Finalist 1997 Dilys Award

  • Blood Red Roses (1997)

  • The Burning Bride (1998)

Simon Levack
Yaotl, trusted slave to Montezuma's Chief Minister Aztec Mexico 1517 (the year Twelve-House)

  • A Demon of the Air (2004)

  • Shadow of the Lords (2005)

  • City of Spies (2006)

  • Tribute of Death (2007)

Gillian Linscott

Nell Bray, a suffragette in England

  • Sister Beneath the Sheet (1991)

  • Hanging on the Wire (1992) [r]

  • Stage Fright (1993)

  • Widow’s Peak (1994)

  • Crown Witness (1995)

  • Dead Man’s Music (1996)

  • Dance on Blood (1998)

  • Absent Friends (1999) 2000 Historical Dagger Award

  • The Perfect Daughter (2000)

  • Dead Man Riding (2002) Finalist 2002 Historical Dagger Award

  • Blood on the Wood (2003) Finalist 2008 Historical Dagger Award

David Liss
Benjamin Weaver, a Jewish ex-pugilist hired by gentry to pursue debtors and thieves, in 18th Century London

  • A Conspiracy of Paper (2001)2001 Barry Award for Best First Novel, 2001 Edgar Award for Best First Novel, 2001 Macavity Award for Best First Novel, Finalist 2001 Anthony Award for Best First Novel [r]

  • A Spectacle of Corruption (2004) Finalist 2005 Nero Award [r]

  • The Devil’s Company (2009)


  • The Coffee Trader (2003) [r]

  • The Whiskey Rebels (2008) Finalist 2009 Macavity Award for Best Historical Novel [r]

Peter Lovesey

Richard Cribb and Edward Thackeray, policeman in Victorian London, England

Wobble to Death (1970)
The Detective Wore Silk Drawers (1971)
Abracadaver (1972)
Mad Hatter’s Holiday (1973) Finalist 1973 Gold Dagger Award
The Tick of Death (1974)
A Case of Spirits (1975)
Swing, Swing Together (1976)
Waxwork (1978)1978 Silver Dagger Award

[r] = I've read it

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Because people are funny (or just stupid), too

I don't have many plans for Saturday yet. Sometime in the future I'll be going in to work to get some overtime but not today. The server on a couple programs has been yoyo-ing all week and the powers that be said no working this weekend so they can maybe fix it. I need to vacuum, do some laundry, walk Tug and figure out dinner. I should get caught up on emails, especially 4MA digests from the week.

I was nice to sleep in today. I woke up at 5 and said ha ha I don't have to get up yet and then Tug woke me up at almost 8.

It's an overcast day outside. I imagine there will be a lot of 4-wheelers zipping up and down the streets.

What I should do is put in some good quality reading time. Will that happen? I don't know. Maybe if I took a shower and dressed for the day I would be more productive. Hunh.

I'll have to think about that.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Yeessss... after a hard day, a good soak just feels good...

My work space got closer to its ergonomic makeover. My keyboard tray was (finally) replaced and I've now got an ergonomic keyboard and another new mouse. I haven't been able to play with anything yet because ... I'm taking on a new task. Long story short, there's a type of state extended benefit that got triggered that requires special training to do -- filing claims in a different system and knowing all the rules/laws to this type of claim. Only 6 people, I think, in the Billings office are going to be able to file this type of claim. One woman just turned in notice so they asked me to step in. Woo hoo! So I started training this afternoon. The new claim kicks in February 7th, so basically a week to learn it. Fingers crossed that this helps me stay on longer than the temporary status I'm currently in when the time comes. Plus I love learning new things.

I started the new Alan Gordon last night ... good good good so far. I just wish I had more time to read but there it is then. After that I have a library book to read and then I think I'll get back to several of the histmyst series I was working on -- Jecks, Knight, Lake, Tremayne, Sedley, etc. I have the new Anna Dean coming in a week or so, too.

I feel so very fortunate these past couple months. Thanks for letting me share with ya'll.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Waddaya mean? This IS my job.

Busy day at work. I ran a couple errands afterward then walked Tug. Now I'm checking on some emails and news before putting on the pj's and reading in bed.

I think I've given up on the Lindsey Davis. I was so looking forward to it because of the subject matter -- the English Civil War -- but it has turned out to be more tell than show which is irritating and boring. I finally got the call from the bookstore that my new Alan Gordon was ready to pick up so I have that to start tonight.

THE PARISIAN PRODIGAL by Alan Gordon. This is 8th of 8 in series featuring Feste, aka Theophilos, and Claudia in early 13th century Europe, in the Fools’ Guild series. Here's a description:

When a swashbuckling stranger shows up at Count Raimon VI's chateau in May 1205 claiming to be the count's hitherto unknown brother, Toulouse's ruler taps one of his court's best minds to investigate—Theophilos the fool. A jester by trade only, Theophilos will need every bit of his considerable wit to solve a conundrum that turns increasingly treacherous after a flame-haired beauty is found slain in her brothel boudoir, the count's putative sibling still asleep beside her. Theophilos will also need crucial assists from his partners in crime solving, including his bewitching wife, Claudia—a duke's daughter equally adept with riposte or rapier—and their scarily precocious 12-year-old apprentice, Helga.
This book was published last week and has 336 pages. It is a MOST EXCELLENT histmyst series. Truly, this series is my highest and strongest recomendation, always. I think it is a brilliant concept, executed very humerously. But start at the beginning with THIRTEENTH NIGHT.

With that, I'll leave you to your own devices, and I'll go get comfy with my book. :)

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

"Oh, it's just a harmless little *bunny*, isn't it?" [Monty Python & the Holy Grail]

My job at work is morphing. The priority now we're told is working the new task -- resolving issues on benefit requests -- and answering phones secondary. The new bunch in the Helena phone center are the primaries -- they've been up and running for about three weeks. I like doing the new stuff. It's problem solving, fact finding to get to a solution or near it.

We also had the ergonomic expert in today and all this week. I hijacked her attention after she helped a girl near me. It was helpful, I believe. My chair is better adjusted, my monitors were raised, my keyboard tray adjusted although that will soon be replaced by a better one so I can have the ergonomic keyboard, and I'll be getting a footrest. Woo hoo! Our supervisors are really pretty good about making our work environments ... workable ... but in a positive way. This is one of the nicest, friendliest places I've ever worked. Amazing.

I haven't made much progress in the book I'm reading but I took it to work with me and it's getting a lot of attention -- mostly its big size I think at first. Maybe I can read more tonight before heading to sleep.

So much Interneting to do and so little time ... but thanks for tuning in ...

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, January 25, 2010

It's a Monday ... I shouldn't have to work this hard

So, it's Monday. Work was okay. We'll be learning more of the new task stuff tomorrow.

On TV we've got Chuck, American Pickers, and Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations. I made my new hit, the sausage/potato casserole.

I picked up REBELS AND TRAITORS by Lindsey Davis from the library today. This is a standalone historical novel just recently published in the US -- it was published in the UK last year I believe. Here's a description:

Set against the terrible struggle of the English Civil War, thisis the story of how this turbulent era effected everyone, from rich to poor, and the hopes and dreams that carried them through years of deprivation, bloodshed and terror. When Gideon Jukes and Juliana Lovell, who are on opposites sides of the struggle, meet during one of the era’s most crucial events, their mutual attraction brings the comfort and companionship for which they both have yearned. But the flowering of radical thought collapses; its failure leads to endless plots and strange alliances. And shadows from the past threaten them individually and together in their hard-won peace.

It as 752 pages. Yeah. Wish it came on Kindle.

So ... a little tv and then I'll crack open the book to see if it strikes me as good.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Alphabet in Historical Crime Fiction

~ K ~

Stuart Kaminsky
Toby Peters, a 1940s Hollywood P.I. in Los Angeles

  • Bullet for a Star (1977)

  • Murder on the Yellow Brick Road (1978)

  • You Bet Your Life (1979)

  • The Howard Hughes Affair (1979)

  • Never Cross a Vampire (1980)

  • High Midnight (1981)

  • Catch a Falling Clown (1982)

  • He Done Her Wrong (1983)

  • The Fala Factor (1984)

  • Down for the Count (1985)

  • The Man Who Shot Lewis Vance (1986)

  • Smart Moves (1987)

  • Think Fast, Mr. Peters (1988)

  • Buried Caesars (1989)

  • Poor Butterfly (1990) Finalist 1991 Shamus Award for Best Novel

  • The Melting Clock (1991)

  • The Devil Met a Lady (1993)

  • Tomorrow Is Another Day (1995)

  • Dancing in the Dark (1996)

  • A Fatal Glass of Beer (1997)

  • A Few Minutes Past Midnight (2001)

  • To Catch a Spy (2002)

  • Mildred Pierced (2003)

  • Now You See It (2004)

Philip Kerr
Bernie Gunther, a German private eye who hates the Nazis, in Berlin, Germany, 1936-1947

  • March Violets (1989) Finalist 1989 New Blood Dagger Award [r]

  • The Pale Criminal (1990)

  • A German Requiem (1991)

  • The One from the Other (2006) Finalist 2007 Historical Dagger Award

  • A Quiet Flame (2008) Finalist 2008 Historical Dagger Award

  • If the Dead Rise Not (2009) [US due March 2010] 2009 Historical Dagger Award

Michael Kilian
Harrison Raines, a Pinkerton spy during America’s Civil War

  • Murder at Manassas (2000)

  • A Killing at Ball's Bluff (2001)

  • The Ironclad Alibi (2002)

  • A Grave at Glorieta (2003)

  • The Shiloh Sisters (2004)

  • Antietam Assassins (2005)

Bedford Green, an art gallery owner and his assistant Sloan Smith, in 1920s Greenwich Village, New York

The Weeping Woman (2001)
  • The Uninvited Countess (2002)
  • A Sinful Safari (2003)

  • Laurie R. King
    Mary Russell, student and then wife of Sherlock Holmes

    • The Beekeeper’s Apprentice (1994) Finalist 1994 Agatha Award for Best Novel [r]

    • A Monstrous Regiment of Women (1995) 1996 Nero Award [r]

    • A Letter of Mary (1996) [r]

    • The Moor (1998) [r]

    • O Jerusalem (1999) [r]

    • Justice Hall (2002) [r]

    • The Game (2004) [r]

    • Locked Rooms (2005) [r]

    • The Language of Bees (2009) [r]

    • The God of the Hive (due April 2010)

    Kate Kingsbury
    Cecily Sinclair, hotel owner in Badger’s End, Edwardian England

    • Room with a Clue (1993)

    • Do Not Disturb (1994)

    • Service for Two (1994)

    • Eat, Drink and Be Buried (1994)

    • Check-Out Time (1995)

    • Grounds for Murder (1995)

    • Pay the Piper (1996)

    • Chivalry Is Dead (1996)

    • Ring for Tomb Service (1997)

    • Death with Reservations (1998)

    • Dying Room Only (1998)

    • Maid to Murder (1999)

    • No Clue at the Inn (2003)

    • Slay Bells (2006)

    • Shrouds of Holly (2007)

    • Ringing in Murder (2008)

    • Decked with Folly (2009)

    Lady Elizabeth Hartleigh Compton, in Sitting Marsh, England during WWII

    • A Bicycle Built for Murder (2001)

    • Death Is in the Air (2001)

    • For Whom Death Tolls (2002)

    • Dig Deep for Murder (2002)

    • Paint by Murder (2003)

    • Berried Alive (2004)

    • Fire When Ready (2004)

    • Wedding Rows (2006)

    • An Unmentionable Murder (2006)

    Alanna Knight
    Inspector Jeremy Faro, a detective in Victorian Edinburgh, Scotland

    • Enter Second Murderer (1988)

    • Blood Line (1989)

    • Deadly Beloved (1989)

    • Killing Cousins (1990)

    • A Quiet Death (1991)

    • To Kill a Queen (1992)

    • The Evil That Men Do (1993)

    • The Missing Duchess (1994)

    • The Bull Slayers (1995)

    • Murder by Appointment (1996)

    • The Coffin Lane Murders (1998)

    • The Final Enemy (2002)

    • Unholy Trinity (2004)

    Rose McQuinn, Faro’s daughter, returning from the American Wild West to Edinburgh, Scotland

    The Inspector’s Daughter (2000)
  • Dangerous Pursuits (2002)
  • An Orkney Murder (2003)
  • Ghost Walk (2005)
  • Destroying Angel (2007)

  • Tam Eildor, mystery-solving historical time-traveller

    • The Dagger in the Crown (2001)

    • The Gowrie Conspiracy (2003)

    • The Stuart Sapphire: Murder in the Regency Brighton (2005)

    Bernard Knight
    Sir John de Wolfe, the crowner (coroner), in 12th century Devon, England

    • The Sanctuary Seeker (1998) [r]

    • The Poisoned Chalice (1998) [r]

    • Crowner’s Quest (1999) [r]

    • The Awful Secret (2000) [r]

    • The Tinner’s Corpse (2001) [r]

    • The Grim Reaper (2002) [r]

    • Fear in the Forest (2003) [r]

    • The Witch Hunter (2004)

    • Figure of Hate (2005)

    • The Elixir of Death (2006)

    • The Noble Outlaw (2007)

    • The Manor of Death (2008)

    • Crowner Royal (2009)

    [r] = I've read it

    Saturday, January 23, 2010

    I'm licking my way out

    ... and still it snows. It has not stopped. It is not supposed to stop until tomorrow night. No, I'm not going to run any errands this weekend. I'm not venturing out via car until I have to to get to work Monday. Walking Tug today: it isn't really too cold out, the wind is not nice, but there's just a lot of white stuff out there. Tug, of course, loves it. Our wonderful neighbor keeps plowing the road and our driveway. We love him.

    It isn't fun to be cooped up inside when you're having a book slump. I'm sampling via Kindle some nonfiction books, the ones nominated for Edgar awards.

    We watched Sparticus on Starz last night; this is a new series. I don't have a verdict yet. It is part Gladiator, part 300, part Rome, etc. Stylized in its graphic violence and sexual scenes. Some cinematography is beautiful. The acting, okay. I will at least check out the next episode next week.

    Steve had to go help with a gun safety class this morning and will be back soon. I'm doing laundry and vacuuming, etc. I have several 4MA digests to read and will catch up on blogs and news, per usual. This evening I'm making SOS for Steve (yuck) and I'll have chili. Hunkering down.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Friday, January 22, 2010

    TGIF with flurries

    Snow!! About four inches so far but not too cold out. But apparently it's not supposed to stop until tomorrow. I don't want to go anywhere this weekend but I see that there are two hold for me at the library -- one of which is a historical I really wanted to read. Darnit.

    Work is going well. The new task we've been taught I've picked up very quickly and I've gotten feedback from my trainer that I'm doing well. That is not true of everyone who is in my little group. I dunno, I've always been able to grasp the systems quickly whereever I go. I was talking to my friend Teri from junior/high school a couple weeks ago. She was an honors student like myself but she was saying that she had to work hard and studied a lot every night. Sadly, school always came pretty easy for me and I didn't have to work that hard -- I say sadly because it didn't create in me good study habits and related good behaviors. I'm just very glad that I'm liking my job and I'm doing it well -- fingers crossed that this helps me to ultimately stay longer at it.

    I'm still book slumping. But tonight on Showtime is a new miniseries called Sparticus with some good actors. This is a show to which I'm definitely looking forward.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Wednesday, January 20, 2010

    Just cute (too bad not an Emmitt or a Tug)

    Yeah, I think I'm having a book slump. And I haven't received the new Alan Gordon yet to help out. (sigh) One .... endures. :)

    More training at work today, this time about some new laws that came into effect at the new year. I understand where most of the thought behind them came from but it has potential to be messy down the road.

    Steve is off shooting tonight. I'm on the Net. A friend on Facebook posted photos from 1978 (6th grade) and I'm in some of them. Aaack! There are actually some very good books coming out shortly that I very much want to read. Just now, I have tons at home but I'm not in the mood somehow. Heavens, I must be ill.

    Tomorrow we're meeting with the bank to refinance our mortgage. Saturday, I may be able to get some overtime in at work filing claims for a big layoff in Missoula.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Tuesday, January 19, 2010

    And getting closer ...

    Back at work: did some training, took some calls, did some of the new tasks we've learned.

    Walked Tug, dinner, some tv, then reading a bit maybe before bed. Haven't had a call from the bookstore that my book is ready so I'll call them later to see if I need to rush over there or not. :)

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Monday, January 18, 2010

    Ok, get ready, scary part's coming up...

    Day 3 of the 3-day weekend. Not doing a whole lot, actually. It is an overcast kind of afternoon outside which is lending itself to not going out -- other than walking Tug. I delivered a gift for my friend's baby to her mother's house which is closer than my friend's house in a town several miles away ... and that's about it. I was going to bring lunch to Steve but he said he was having a rather crazy day and suggested that it happen some other time.

    I'll be putting a turkey in the roaster in a couple hours. I figured with a day off I might as well cook something time consuming and have some good left overs for turkey pot pie and such later in the week.

    I have a very good book coming out tomorrow but in the meantime, I think I'm verging on a reading slump. For several days now, I know I have soooo many series to read and a lot of the books are actually on hand but I'm just not being drawn into reading anything. Good thing I don't have number-of-books-read goal this year.

    And I'm kinda feeling like a nap would be nice now before it gets too late but also kind of resisting it. Hrumph, such a state of indecision I'm in.

    Tonight on tv I've got Chuck and Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations to watch. Tomorrow at work we have training of the new laws in the morning at Job Service and actually a couple more times this week. I imagine the phones will be crazy because people haven't talked to a person in three days but the ones in Helena will have to take care of it. It will be a short week which will be nice.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Sunday, January 17, 2010

    Alphabet in Historical Crime Fiction

    ~ J~

    Jane Jakeman

    Lord Ambrose Malfine, an English aristocrat back from fighting the Greek War of Independence

    • Let There Be Blood (1998)

    • The Egyptian Coffin (1997)

    • Fool’s Gold (1998)

    Claude Monet, French impressionist painter, in early 1900s London, England, and Venice, Italy

    • In the Kingdom of Mists (2002)

    • In The City of Dark Waters (2006)

    Andrea H. Japp

    Agnes de Souarcy, young widowed lady of the manor Normandy, France 1304

    • The Season of the Beast (2008)

    • The Breath of the Rose (2009)

    • The Divine Blood (2009)

    Michael Jecks

    Simon Puttock, medieval West County bailiff, and Sir Baldwin Furnshill, ex-Templar Knight, in Devon, England

    • The Last Templar (1995) [r]

    • The Merchant’s Partner (1995) [r]

    • A Moorland Hanging (1996) [r]

    • The Crediton Killings (1997)

    • The Abbott’s Gibbet (1998)

    • The Leper’s Return (1998)

    • Squire Throwleigh’s Heir (1999)

    • Belladonna at Belstone (1999)

    • The Traitor of St. Giles (2000)

    • The Boy-Bishop’s Glovemaker (2000)

    • The Tournament of Blood (2001)

    • The Sticklepath Strangler (2001)

    • The Devil’s Acolyte (2002)

    • The Mad Monk of Gidleigh (2002)

    • The Templar’s Penance (2003)

    • The Outlaws of Ennor (2004)

    • The Tolls of Death (2004)

    • The Chapel of Bones (2004)

    • The Butcher of St. Peter’s (2005)

    • A Friar’s Bloodfeud (2005)

    • The Death Ship of Dartmouth (2006)

    • The Malice of Unnatural Death (2007)

    • Dispensation of Death (2007)

    • The Templar, the Queen and Her Lover (2007)

    • The Prophecy of Death (2008)

    • The King of Thieves (2009)

    • No Law in the Land (2009)

    • The Bishop Must Die (April 2010)

    Maureen Jennings

    William Murdoch, a police detective in 1890s Toronto, Ontario, Canada

    • Except the Dying (1997) Finalist 1998 Anthony Award for Best First Novel,Finalist 1998 Barry Award for Best Nove,lFinalist 1998 Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel

    • Under the Dragon’s Tail (1998)

    • Poor Tom Is Cold (2001)

    • Let Loose the Dogs (2003) Finalist 2004 Anthony Award for Best Historical Novel

    • Night’s Child (2005) Finalist 2006 Barry Award for Best Paperback, Finalist 2006 Macavity Award for Best Historical Novel

    • Vices of My Blood (2006)

    • A Journeyman to Grief (2007) Finalist 2008 Arthur Ellis Award for Best Novel

    J. Sydney Jones

    Karl Werthen, a lawyer, and Dr. Hanns Gross, the real-life father of modern criminology, in turn-of-the-20th-century Vienna

    • The Empty Mirror (2009)

    • Requiem in Vienna (February 2010)

    [r] = I've read it

    Have a good Sunday ... cross your fingers for Dallas!

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Saturday, January 16, 2010

    I'm having a pretty good Saturday. I had an early morning hair cut appointment. I then realized my blue purse had seen better days and beyond so I went to the TJ Maxx to find a new one. (frustrating that one cannot find style and organization in one bag). I wanted a red one but got the less expensive but more organizational tan bag. I got home and walked Tug -- gorgeous morning out in the 50s. I had lunch -- I have been in a guacamole mood the past few days so opened the package I'd gotten. I've got laundry going but then Tug and I took a nap. I vacuumed and now I have a million emails to catch up on, mostly 4MA digests. Steve is a shooting tournament this afternoon. I'm meeting my long-time friends Teri and Stacy at 7pm for wine and chatting at CJs. What a good day!

    And I don't have to be back to work until Tuesday! I need to drop off a baby gift for my friend Sara at her mom's house. Her mom actually lives nearby; Sara lives in Fromberg now. Oy.

    On the more serious side, I need to pay some bills and finish cleaning. On Monday, I've decided that since I'll be home I could cook a turkey. It doesn't have to be just for Thanksgiving, right?

    On Tuesday, I have a book coming to Barnes & Noble (not available on Kindle) that makes me very very happy. Alan Gordon's Jester series is brilliant: the medieval jesters are actually a guild very much like the CIA being involved in political matters of the various courts. A funny series, too. Well, the latest, THE PARISIAN PRODIGAL comes out on Tuesday and I have a gift card to use (thanks, Mom). In the meantime, I'm not really sure to what I'm being drawn. On the same day I have another book I'm interested in -- again not on the Kindle -- that I have a hold on at the library. The library hasn't been the greatest lately since they switched to a new computer system.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Thursday, January 14, 2010

    We are unamused

    At work today, they're finally training us on some other tasks, things that we can do when there are no calls or the system is down ... or get some overtime on. Woo hoo!

    Not much else going on this Thursday. Got some groceries, picked up dinner, etc. This weekend is a three day weekend for me with Monday off for Martin Luther King Day so that will be nice. My friend Teri will be in town this weekend and hope to meet up maybe Saturday night for a sip of wine and catching up.

    I finished THE BETRAYAL OF THE BLOOD LILY by Lauren Willig. This was a pretty good entry in the series, however, this title had nothing at all to do with the story so I don't know from where that came. I don't know yet what I'll read next.

    Friday tomorrow, yay.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Wednesday, January 13, 2010

    I KNEW it!!

    My downstairs computer is broken and I don't know if it can be saved. I suppose if it is really and truly dead then what was on it isn't supremely important but I won't be happy. At least I have the laptop to keep in contact with the world.

    And you know, we have been leaving Tug inside while it's been cold out this winter. I'll bet he's been going on the InterWeb and going to places he shouldn't have. What else does he have to do all day? And now he's messed up my computer. No more Net surfing for you, Tuggy.

    Much love,
    PK the Bookeemonster

    Tuesday, January 12, 2010

    (sigh) I guess I'd rather go back to the damn cookie on the nose

    I'm currently reading THE BETRAYAL OF THE BLOOD LILY by Lauren Willig. This is 6th of 6 in series featuring the league of the Pink Carnation. Here's a description:

    Everyone warned Miss Penelope Deveraux that her unruly behavior would land her in disgrace someday. She never imagined she's be whisked off to India to give the scandal of her hasty marriage time to die down. As Lady Frederick Staines, Penelope plunges into the treacherous waters of the court of the Nizam of Hyderabad, where no one is quite what they seem-even her husband. In a strange country, where elaborate court dress masks even more elaborate intrigues and a dangerous spy called the Marigold leaves venomous cobras as his calling card, there is only one person Penelope can trust... Captain Alex Reid has better things to do than play nursemaid to a pair of aristocrats. Or so he thinks-until Lady Frederick Staines out- shoots, out-rides, and out-swims every man in the camp. She also has an uncanny ability to draw out the deadly plans of the Marigold and put herself in harm's way. With danger looming from local warlords, treacherous court officials, and French spies, Alex realizes that an alliance with Lady Staines just might be the only thing standing in the way of a plot designed to rock the very foundations of the British Empire...

    It was just published and has 416 pages. I like this series even though it is a little fluffy because I've always loved the Scarlet Pimpernel and these are somewhat based on that story.

    Steve is a at a board meeting. I'm lounging on the bed with the laptop watching Psychic Kids and Tug is at the foot of the bed licking a peanutbutter jar. Nice 'n' cozy except I'll have to find something else to sleep in tonight because he's slobbered over my nightshirt that I didn't know was underneath him. Ugh.

    Happy annual event to my brother Erik today. Love and hugs to him.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Monday, January 11, 2010

    Here kitty ... kitty ...

    Lots and lots of calls today. Typical Monday. Claimants haven't been able to talk to anyone in two days so there's an onslaught of calls.

    The good news is that Chuck is back on tv. I'm worried that they can't keep the standard they had the past couple seasons or that they'll get too silly. Also watching tonight the season premiere of Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations. Life is good.

    Tomorrow on my Kindle a new book should be there in the morning ... the next by Lauren Willig in the Pink Carnation series. Life is still good.

    Tomorrow on tv is Psychic Kids and Paranormal State ... ah, life is indeed good.

    Sleep well.

    Much love,
    PK the Bookeemonster

    Sunday, January 10, 2010

    Alphabet of Historical Mysteries

    ~ I ~

    Graham Ison
    Divisional Detective Inspector Ernest Hardcastle and his assistant Detective Sergeant Charles Marriott, WW I London, England 1915-8

    • Hardcastle's Spy (2003)

    • Hardcastle’s Armistice (2004)

    • Hardcastle’s Conspiracy (2005)

    • Hardcastle's Airmen (2006)

    • Hardcastle's Actress (2007)

    • Hardcastle's Burglar (2008)

    • Hardcastle's Mandarin (2009)

    Claude Izner
    Victor Legris, bookseller in Paris 1889-1890s

    • Murder On the Eiffel Tower (2007)

    • The Disappearance at Pere-Lachaise (2007)

    • The Montmartre Investigation (2008)

    • The Marais Assassin (2009)

    Saturday, January 9, 2010

    Nothing ... we've done nothing ...

    Not much happening today.

    My 'Boys play for the Wild Card tonight ... we'll see. they've not won a playoff game since 1996 I believe.

    I'll be making my new sausage/potato casserole that went over so well the first time I made it. It is very rich but good and will create a lot of left overs.
    Sllloooowwwllllyyyy reading the Dorothy Dunnett. I dunno, it's rough going. I don't know if I can stick with it.

    So nothin' much.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Friday, January 8, 2010

    The week is over ... I think it won

    Oh yay, the week is over. Tough day on the calls. Example: most new claims take about ten minutes or less -- my last call of the day was 50 minutes in length. Ready. For. The. Weekend.

    I had to go to Walmart after work so we're set for groceries for a while which is a good thing. The next best thing to the weekend is the upcoming payday.

    I don't think anything is really planned for Saturday or Sunday other than the usual cleaning and so forth.

    I've been feeling like a reading slump coming on ... I hope it doesn't take hold for real. Just don't know what I'm feeling like to read, nothing is sticking or satisfying for a couple days now. Hrumph.

    See ya in the morning...

    Much love,
    PK the Bookeemonster

    Thursday, January 7, 2010

    Next up: yellow ice sculptures

    Still cold (supposedly the wind chill dropped to about negative 31), but otherwise sunny today. But this weekend and beyond is near 40s above. Today, I had gone to get the oil changed in my car at lunch time when the lube guys pointed out a nail in the side of one of my back tires. They pumped it up enough for me get back to work and Steve came to get it to get it fixed which was wonderful of him. But overall, grrr.

    I'm currently reading THE GAME OF KINGS by Dorothy Dunnett. This is the first book of the famous Lymond Chronicles. I've been meaning to read it for years and this year I'm going to do this series. Here is a description:

    A sweeping saga filled with passion, courage, and the endless fight for freedom. The setting is 1547, in Edinborough, Scotland. Henry VIII has died and left a boy on the throne and the Scots have a baby Queen. The game of kings has shifted with new players and everyone is watching, waiting, and juggling for power. Francis Crawford of Lymond returns to the country despite the charge of treason hanging over his head. Set on redeeming his reputation, he leads a company of outlaws against England as he fights for the country he loves so dearly.

    It was originally published in 1961. A straight historical novel, the language is dense and will require more than just quick skimming.

    Glad tomorrow is Friday -- I so wanted to sleep in this morning. I woke up -- sometimes I move to the couch when Steve's snoring is too much -- and with no clock nearby I can sometimes gauge what time it is by how dark the room is. I was kinda figuring it was 3 0r 4 am and a couple more hours to sleep -- nope, it was 5:00 and I had to get up in a half hour. Blah. So the weekend will be welcome.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Wednesday, January 6, 2010

    What's a little snow and wind chill in the negative double digits?

    Snoooowwww! We got about 7- 8 inches of snow in yesterday's storm. And coolllld today. But they're saying it will be around 39 on Saturday. Hunh.

    Currently reading EGGSECUTIVE ORDERS by Julie Hyzy. This is 3rd of 3 in series featuring Olivia (Ollie) Paras, White House executive chef in Washington DC. Here is a description:

    When NSA big shot Carl Minkus dies right after eating the dinner Olivia Paras's staff had prepared, all forks point to them. Now the Secret Service is picking apart the kitchen-and scrutinizing the staff's every move. The timing couldn't be worse with the White House Lawn Easter Egg Roll to prep for without access to a kitchen. Olivia must find the real culprit-before she cracks under pressure.
    This was just published and has 352 pages. I got this one as a pre-order for my Kindle and Tuesday morning -- the day of its release -- it was there. Cool. I was really looking forward to this book, being a cozy but enjoyable read in the first two books, but this one is being disappointing. The thing that made it special -- a chef in the White House therefore interesting setting and tidbits -- is not in this one much. Olivia is suspected of somehow being involved in the death therefore she and her staff are banned from the kitchen and the White House. So right now, a lot of just being a silly amateur sleuth. Bother.

    I have little news other than Steve's brother and his wife had their 2nd daughter this morning. Perhaps her name is Emily. With Steve's family, information is usually lacking for a while.

    Tonight, I don't have any tv, Steve is at shooting, so I hope to get caught up on emails, blogs and maybe some more reading. I've been cozying up with a heating pad since coming home from walking Tug so it's been very nice this evening.

    Much love,
    PK the Bookeemonster

    Monday, January 4, 2010

    What did you say?

    Monday. That's all I have to say about it.

    Late dinner tonight because Steve is stuck getting a prescription filled because of stupid insurance. Tired in general. I'll read a bit before bed.

    Currently reading WHERE MEMORIES LIE by Deborah Crombie. This is 12th of 13 in series featuring Duncan Kincaid, a Scotland Yard superintendent, and Gemma James, a sergeant, in London. Here's a description:

    Erika Rosenthal has always been secretive with her friend and neighbor, Detective Inspector Gemma James, about her past, except for one telling detail: She and her long-dead husband, David, came to London as refugees from Nazi Germany. But now the elderly woman needs Gemma's help. A unique piece of jewelry stolen from her years ago has mysteriously turned up at a prestigious London auction house. Erika believes the theft may be tied to her husband's death, which had always been assumed a suicide. Gemma has a tough challenge. She must navigate the shadowy and secretive world of London's monied society to discover the jewelry's connection to David's murderer. However, the cold case needs to be put back on the books and possibly into the hands of her partner, Duncan Kincaid. When a second, present-day murder kicks the investigation into high gear, Gemma becomes more determined to exact justice for Erika—in a case that will have lasting repercussions.
    It was published in 2008 and has 304 pages.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Sunday, January 3, 2010

    ~ H ~

    Barbara Hambly
    Ben January, a surgeon and music teacher, in 1830s New Orleans

    • A Free Man of Color (1997) [r]

    • Fever Season (1998)

    • Graveyard Dust (1999)

    • Sold down the River (2000)

    • Die upon a Kiss (2001)

    • Wet Grave (2002)

    • Days of the Dead (2003)

    • Dead Water (2004)

    Barbara Hamilton
    Abigail Adams, wife of John Adams (not yet President), Massachusetts Colony 1773

    • The Ninth Daughter (2009) [r]

    Lauren Haney
    Lieutenant Bak, an ex-charioteer, head of the Medjay police, in ancient Egypt

    • The Right Hand of Amon (1997)

    • A Face Turned Backward (1999)

    • A Vile Justice (1999)

    • A Curse of Silence (2000)

    • A Place of Darkness (2001)

    • A Cruel Deceit (2002)

    • Flesh of the God (2003)

    • A Path of Shadows (2003)

    Karen Harper
    Elizabeth I and crew in 1500s England

    • The Poyson Garden (1999) [r]

    • The Tidal Pool (2000) [r]

    • The Twylight Tower (2001) [r]

    • The Queene’s Cure (2002) [r]

    • The Thorne Maze (2003) [r]

    • The Queene’s Christmas (2003)

    • The Fyre Mirror (2005)

    • The Fatal Fashione (2005)

    • The Hooded Hawke (2007)

    Tom Harper
    Demetrios Askiates, a former bounty hunter and bodyguard, in service to the Byzantine Emperor in late 11th century Constantinople, in the First Crusade trilogy

    • The Mosaic of Shadows (2004) [r]

    • Knights of the Cross (2005)

    • Siege of Heaven (2006)

    CS Harris
    Sebastian St. Cyr, Viscount Devlin, an investigator in Regency England

    • What Angels Fear (2005) [r]

    • When Gods Die (2006) [r]

    • Why Mermaids Sing (2007) [r]

    • Where Serpents Sleep (2008) [r]

    • What Remains of Heaven (2009) [r]

    Cora Harrison
    Mara, a female judge and lawgiver appointed by King Turlough Donn O’Brien in the early 16th century, on the west coast of Ireland

    • My Lady Judge (2007) [r]

    • Michaelmas Tribute (2008)

    • The Sting of Justice (2009)

    • Writ in Stone (2009)

    Simon Hawke
    Will Shakespeare, a young writer, and Tuck Smythe, an aspiring actor, in the Elizabethan era

    • A Mystery of Errors (2001)

    • The Slaying of the Shrew (2001)

    • Much Ado About Murder (2002)

    • The Merchant of Vengeance (2003)

    [r] = I've read it

    Saturday, January 2, 2010

    Blissin' out on doing nothin'

    Well, I'm always glad to start a new year with a good read ... kinda gets the ball rolling and sets the good karma for a new start for the year ahead in reads. And so far, the two books I've read on my Kindle have been really good so that makes me happy too.

    I finished STILL LIFE by Louise Penny last night. I liked it a lot more than I even expected. (sigh) Another series to add to the rotation.

    I saw a headline in my local newspaper (I read it online) about the first baby at one of our hospitals was an early one ... and I just KNEW it was my friend. Yup. They were expecting a boy around January 17th and he showed up as the first baby of the new year at that hospital. I'm so happy for her ... it's her first. Named him Carter John. The paper had a picture of the three of them and she looked fantastic for just having had a baby.

    Nothing much planned for today. I have to do some laundry and vacuuming and I should go to the grocery store for a couple things. Other than that I think I'll read. Steve is going over to a buddy's house to update his (Steve's) computer and then tonight he's going to a monthly pc gaming night.

    I'm going to look at my books for the next read. I do have a new Julie Hyzy coming on Tuesday ...

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster

    Friday, January 1, 2010

    Happy 2010 and Top 10

    Well, I made my reading goal for 2009: I read an average of 10 books a month or a total of 120 in the year. Just made it.

    Top 10 of 2009: (in no particular order)


    Just a wonderful story and the way the secret is kept is brilliant

    A DARKER DOMAIN by Val McDermid

    McDermid at her best. I've always liked this author. I love cold cases and intertwined storylines.


    This 2nd book of the trilogy kicked it up a notch. The first book was a complex story told well. This one expanded the conspiracy around an amazing female character and brought the real world of so many people involved than just a set number of suspects and do-gooders in regular mysteries. I read this while in the hospital and it oh so helped me pass the time.

    THE LAST EMBER by Daniel Levin

    Even before THE DA VINCI CODE, I've loved books around religious/political intrigue and this book delivers in spades. Read it.


    I just don't want this story to end but this is the last ever.

    SILENT ON THE MOOR by Deanna Raybourn

    I have to admit, I love the relationship more than the mystery in this series.

    GRAVE GOODS by Ariana Franklin

    A strong female lead in a medieval histmyst that isn't a nun is refreshing. I read a lot of medievals and I love them all so this is sort of representative of those.

    MARTYR by Rory Clements

    An Elizabethan-set mystery! One of my all-time favorite time periods and there are so few of them with the complexity I love. This is a beginning of a new series .... long may the author write them.

    A MOMENT OF SILENCE by Anna Dean

    I do enjoy the Regency period, too, and with neat element of some of the story told in letters, I really can hear a specific actress's voice in my head for the narrator.

    MURDER ON THE LONDON BRIDGE by Susanna Gregory

    I love the Restoration time period of corruption and fear and decadence. What a crazy time to life through.

    Bottoms (or disappointments):

    EVIL AT HEART by Chelsea Cain

    I absolutely loved the 1st but now I'm done with this series. The title is fairly accurate and I just don't want it in my brain.


    I won it, read it, it had potential but it turned out to be rather silly

    NINE DRAGONS by Michael Connelly

    This one was really rather disappointing, he can do so much better

    I'm reading some really fantastic series that I really like but can't list as tops because I try to read one a month or every other month and there are just too many to make into a list. I am so blessed that there are soooo many good hystmyst series out there. I am sad to say that because I love them so much I am (thus far) neglecting other great series in police procedurals and private eyes that I mean to get to.

    I hope everyone has a 2010 that is filled majorily with joy and good reads.

    Much love,

    PK the Bookeemonster