Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Hey! Those aren't pandas

Teaser Tuesday!

HEARTSTONE by CJ Sansom will be released in the US in January. It is available via www.bookdepository.com now.

Here's a little taste:

The churchyard was peaceful in the summer afternoon. Twigs and branches lay strewn across the gravel path, torn from the trees by the gales which had swept the country in that stormy June of 1545. In London we had escaped lightly, only a few chimneypots gone, but the winds had wreaked havoc in the north. People spoke of hailstones there as large as fists, with the shapes of faces on them. But tales became more dramatic as they spread, as any lawyer knows.

I had been in my chambers in Lincoln's In all morning, working through some briefs for cases in the Court of Requests. They would not be heard until the autumn now; the Trinity law term had ended early by order of the King, in view of the threat of invasion.

In recent months I had found myself becoming restless with my paperwork. With a few exceptions the same cases came up again and again in Requests: landlords wanting to turn tenant farmers off their lands to pasture sheep for the profitable wool trade, or for the same reason trying to appropriate the village commons on which the poor depended. Worthy cases, but always the same. And as I worked, my eyes kept drifting to the letter delivered by a messenger from Hampton Court. It aly on the corner of my desk, a white rectangle with a lump of red sealing wax glinting in the centre. The letter worried me, all the more for its lack of detail. Eventually, unable to keep my thoughts from wandering, I decided to go for a walk.

When I left chambers I saw a flower seller, a young woman, had got past the Lincoln's Inn gatekeeper. She stood in a corner of Gatehouse Court, in a grey dress with a dirty apron, her face framed by a white coif, holding out posies to the passing barristers. As I went by she called out that she was a widow, her husband dead in the war. I saw she had wallflowers in her basket; they reminded me I had not visited my poor housekeeper's grave for nearly a month, for wallflowers had been Joan's favorite. I asked for a bunch, and she held them out to me with a work-roughened hand. I passed her a halfpenny; she curtsied and thanked me graciously, though her eyes were cold. I walked on, under the Great Gate and up newly paved Chancery Lane to the little church at the top.

I'm just a few pages into HEARTSTONE. I hope to do some more reading tonight.

I have tomorrow off. I've got to do some work on the newsletter while I can. This coming three-day weekend we have family here, both Steve's and mine so my time then is going to be limited.

Have a lovely evening

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, August 30, 2010

O fabjous day/ Mailbox Monday

It's Mailbox Monday! Mailbox Monday gathers together for readers the books that came into the house last week. (feel free to share yours) Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.


Guess what's here!! Today!!! OMG. HEARTSTONE by CJ Sansom!!! Bwa hahahha! Evil wicked joyful laugh! I'm so happeeeeee! Squeeeee!

This is 5th of 5 in series featuring Matthew Shardlake, a lawyer in mid-16th century England. Here's a description:

Summer, 1545. England is at war. Henry VIII’s invasion of France has gone badly wrong, and a massive French fleet is preparing to sail across the Channel. As the English fleet gathers at Portsmouth, the country raises the largest militia army it has ever seen. The King has debased the currency to pay for the war, and England is in the grip of soaring inflation and economic crisis. Meanwhile Matthew Shardlake is given an intriguing legal case by an old servant of Queen Catherine Parr. Asked to investigate claims of “monstrous wrongs” committed against a young ward of the court, which have already involved one mysterious death, Shardlake and his assistant Barak journey to Portsmouth. Once arrived, Shardlake and Barak find themselves in a city preparing to become a war zone; and Shardlake takes the opportunity to also investigate the mysterious past of Ellen Fettipace, a young woman incarcerated in the Bedlam. The emerging mysteries around the young ward, and the events that destroyed Ellen’s family nineteen years before, involve Shardlake in reunions both with an old friend and an old enemy close to the throne. Events will converge on board one of the King’s great warships, primed for battle in
Portsmouth harbour . . .

It was just published and has 626 pages and comes with one of those attached ribbons as bookmark, isn't that cool? Yes, this is now my current read. This series is the measuring stick for good historical mysteries. I had let myself forget about it coming and when I opened the mailbox after a Monday at work, it was pure bliss.

Also in the mailbox since last week was GIRL FROM MARS by Julie Cohen This is a stand alone chick flick that I read over the weekend and was actually a fun read because the chick in question was a comic book artist, very nerdy with fun, nerdy friends.

On the Kindle, I received BAD BOY by Peter Robinson, just released last Tuesday, the latest in the Alan Banks procedurals.


Steve has a gun club orientation thingy again tonight. I wish they hadn't moved Lie to Me to 8:00 which is the same time as Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations, forcing me to choose one over the other. What a bother.

Otherwise, gosh, I don't know what I'll be doing, I suppose I could, like, READ the NEW CJ SANSOM..... or something.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sunday Seconds

Sunday Seconds -- there are books that I would really love to re-read -- if I could make the time. Sometimes books have profound impacts on one's reading experience. Sometimes you just know these books could be even greater if you could go back and read them with again better understanding and life experiences under your belt. Sometimes books don't hold up the memory the second time around -- that's the risk. Sunday Seconds will be a cataloging of that kind of wish list.


SHARDS OF HONOR by Lois McMaster Bujold (the first of a fantastic series)

This book features the mother of the main character of this series but it helps to explain so much about Miles Vorkosigan, one of the most interesting characters ever invented. More about him after the description of this book.

Cordelia Naismith, captain of an Astronomical Survey ship from the extremely liberal and technologically advanced Beta Colony, is exploring a newly-discovered planet when her base camp is attacked. While investigating, she is surprised by a soldier, hits her head on a rock, and awakens to find that, while most of her crew has escaped, she is marooned with an injured crewman and Captain Lord Aral Vorkosigan of Barrayar, notorious throughout human space as the "Butcher of Komarr". He had been left for dead by a treacherous rival. During their five-day hike to a secret Barrayaran base, she finds Vorkosigan not at all the monster his reputation suggests, and she is strongly attracted to him, and the feeling is mutual—he asks her to marry him. She helps him to defeat a mutiny, despite some well-intentioned interference from her crew. She is then "rescued" and returns to Beta Colony.
It turns out that the secret base was a staging point for an invasion of Beta Colony's ally Escobar, to be led by Crown Prince Serg, the vicious son and heir of Emperor Ezar. Cordelia goes to Escobar in command of a decoy ship and successfully distracts the Barrayaran ships on picket duty at the wormhole exit so the transport ships following her can deliver a devastating new Betan weapon to the Escobaran defenders.
She is captured, briefly tortured by the sadistic Admiral Vorrutyer, then unexpectedly rescued by Vorrutyer's mentally unstable batman, Sergeant Bothari, who kills his master. Afterwards, Commodore Vorkosigan hides the pair in his cabin. The new weapons give the Escobarans an overwhelming advantage and the Barrayaran invasion is driven back with heavy losses. Crown Prince Serg, his flagship, and all hands aboard are lost. As Vorkosigan takes charge and organizes his fleet's retreat, Cordelia overhears one critical fact and deduces, step by step, a political secret that would plunge Barrayar into civil war if it ever got out. When Vorkosigan no longer needs to hide her in his cabin, she is placed in the ship's brig. The ship is attacked and loses power temporarily, including the internal gravity, and Cordelia is injured. The Barrayaran retreat is successful, in part due to a suicide mission that blocks the wormhole.
On her way back to Beta Colony after a prisoner exchange, she is assigned a cabin mate who turns out to be a Betan psychiatrist convinced that her injuries are evidence that she was tortured by Vorkosigan, and the fact that she denies being tortured means that she has been psychologically tampered with. Desperate to keep her secret, Cordelia refuses to let herself sleep, developing insomnia, stuttering, and a nervous tic, which further leads the psychiatrist and doctors to conclude that she has been brainwashed and may even be a spy. At home on Beta, the authorities are determined to "cure" her, forcing her to flee.
She manages to reach Barrayar, where she marries Aral Vorkosigan. The dying Emperor Ezar Vorbarra appoints Aral as Regent-Elect for his grandson and heir, the four-year-old Prince Gregor. Aral, who is next in line of succession, at first refuses, but Cordelia convinces him to take the job.

It was published in 1986 and has 320 pages.

Miles Vorkosigan. Ahhh. I simultaneously want to meet him and am very glad that he's not real. Miles is one of the most striking characters in science fiction. He is both brilliant (especially in military tactics) and hyperactive. He compulsively and constantly challenges the world in spite of (or because of) his stature (4'9" --because of an chemical attack on his mother while she was pregnant with him) sometimes with disastrous consequences, although more often his mind overcomes his physical weakness. He has an ambiguous status on his home planet, being simultaneously a pampered and powerful aristocrat and a despised "mutie." In his youth he contemplated running away from Barrayar and its prejudice against disabled people, but he never acted on this impulse, perhaps because of his loyalty to his family and his Vor code of honour. He has a strong tendency to manipulate people and is very good at bluffing. The Dendarii Free Mercenaries begin as pure imaginative figment, and through frantic improvisation he conceals his deception from his erstwhile recruits; their accomplishments make real his invention. Despite the initial successes of this "lie first, fix later" strategy, it always makes for manic juggling of various falsehoods and stories, and it does eventually blow up in his face.

Vorkosigan Saga

Cordelia Naismith:
Shards of Honor (1986)
Barrayar (1991) - Hugo and Locus SF Awards winner, 1992, Nebula Award nominee, 1991

Miles Vorkosigan:
The Warrior's Apprentice (1986)
Borders of Infinity (1989)
Brothers in Arms (1989)
The Vor Game (1990)
Mirror Dance (1994)
Cetaganda (1995)
Memory (1996)
Komarr (1998)
A Civil Campaign (1999)
Diplomatic Immunity (2002)
"Winterfair Gifts" (2008)
CryoBurn (forthcoming, late 2010)

Ethan of Athos (1986)
Falling Free (1988)
Dreamweaver's Dilemma (1995)

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Saturday, August 28, 2010


Today's Weekly Geeks is about examining a book (or books) which were published in your birth decade. Tell us about a book that came out in the decade you were born which you either loved or hated. Is is relevant to today? Is it a classic, or could it be?


I'll focus on mysteries first, of course. I was born in 1966. Here are the Edgars of 1966:

The Grand Master of 1966: 1966 Georges Simenon

1966 Edgar Award Best Mystery Novel Winner and Nominees
Winner: THE QUILLER MEMORANDUM, by Adam Hall (Simon & Schuster)


THE PALE BETRAYER, by Dorothy Salisbury Davis (Scribner's)

FUNERAL IN BERLIN, by Len Deighton (Putnam)

THE PERFECT MURDER, by H.R.F. Keating (Dutton)

THE FAR SIDE OF THE DOLLAR, by Ross Macdonald (Knopf)

AIRS ABOVE THE GROUND, by Mary Stewart (Wm. Morrow)

1966 Edgar Award Best First Mystery Novel by an American Author Winner and Nominees

IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT, by John Ball (Harper & Row)


BEFORE THE BALL WAS OVER, by Alexandra Roudybush (Doubleday Crime Club)

THE EXPENDABLE SPY, by Jack D. Hunter (Dutton)

THE FRENCH DOLL, by Vincent McConner (Hill & Wang)

1966 Edgar Award Best Fact Crime Winner and Nominees

IN COLD BLOOD, by Truman Capote (Random House)


A LITTLE GIRL IS DEAD A, by Harry Golden (World)

THE POWER OF LIFE AND DEATH, by Michael V. DiSalle with Lawrence G. Blochman (Random House)

MURDERERS SANE AND MAD, by Miriam Allen deFord (Abelard-Schuman)

THE CENTURY OF THE DETECTIVE, by Jurgen Thorwald (Harcourt, Brace & World)

1966 Edgar Award Best Short Story Mystery Winner and Nominees

"The Possibility of Evil" by Shirley Jackson (SAT EVENING POST 12/18)


"Foxer" by Brian Cleeve (SAT EVENING POST 12/18)

"The Case for Miss Peacock" by Charlotte Armstrong (EQMM 2/65)

"Who Walks Behind" by Holly Roth (EQMM 9/65)

1966 Edgar Award Best Young Adult Mystery Book Winner and Nominees

THE MYSTERY OF 22 EAST by Leon Ware (Westminster Press)


THE APACHE GOLD MYSTERY by Eileen Thompson (Abelard-Schuman)

THE SECRET OF THE SIMPLE CODE by Nancy Faulkner (Doubleday)

SECRET OF THE HAUNTED CRAGS by Lawrence J. Hunt (Funk & Wagnalls)

1966 Edgar Award Best Mystery Motion Picture Movie Screenplay Winner and Nominees

THE SPY WHO CAME IN FROM THE COLD by Paul Dehn and Guy Trosper (Paramount)

Nominated:BUNNY LAKE IS MISSING by John and Penelope Mortimer (Columbia)

THAT DARN CAT by The Gordons and Bill Walsh (Buena Vista)

The Hugo Awards of 1966:

1966: Novel: ... And Call Me Conrad by Roger Zelazny and Dune by Frank Herbert (tie)

Short Fiction: " 'Repent, Harlequin!' Said the Ticktockman" by Harlan Ellison

Professional Magazine: If Professional Artist: Frank Frazetta

Amateur Magazine: ERB-dom (Camille Cazedessus, Jr., ed.)

Best All-Time Series: the "Foundation" series by Isaac Asimov

National Book Award of 1966: The Collected Stories of Katherine Anne Porter
By Katherine Anne Porter (Harcourt, Brace)

Pulitzer Prize 0f 1966:

Fiction: Collected Stories by Katherine Anne Porter (Harcourt)
Drama: (No Award)
History: The Life of the Mind in America by the late Perry Miller (Harcourt)
Biography or Autobiography: A Thousand Days by Arthur M. Schlesinger
Poetry:Selected Poems by Richard Eberhart (New Directions)
General Nonfiction: Wandering Through Winter by Edwin Way Teale (Dodd)

So, what does it all mean? I think that prizes mean something to the winners but overall after 43 years, no one remembers who they were but they're in a list somewhere.


I got my hair trimmed this morning. Then I went to Walmart; I got back and walked Tug. I've got laundry going and so forth. The nap I took kind of zapped my ambition now to accomplish anything more. The clouds are beginning to settle in so we can have the lovely day tomorrow in the 60s.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, August 27, 2010

TGIF - There's always a rainbow at the end of the week

Friday at last. Again.

Tonight I have tv. Say Yes to the Dress-Atlanta and the final two episodes of The Pillars of the Earth. Time is running out for the good guys to win so they better stop wasting time now.

Work was work. The weekend is the usual with newsletter business, cleaning and laundry, and walking Tug. Steve is working on a door tomorrow and maybe visiting a gun show.

I wish I could make quicker progress in my reads, but there it is.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, August 26, 2010


OMG. 100 degrees. Hot. Don't like it.

I started listening to the audiobook FOOL MOON by Jim Butcher. This is 2nd of 13 in series featuring Harry Dresden, the only wizard listed in the yellow pages in Chicago. Here is a description:

Someone, someTHING, is shredding people in Chicago, leaving behind huge doggy footprints painted in the blood of the victims. Oh, and of course, it's round about full moon time. Reluctantly Karrin Murphy, Director of Special Investigations for the Chicago P.D., has had to call in Harry Dresden, professional wizard. Not that she trusts him much anymore after the way he left her hanging the last time they worked together. But he's the only with the knowledge and special skills she'll need if she has to deal with a werewolf on the loose.

Published in 2001; the book has 352 pages.

Hey I have one subscriber for Premeditated and a second on the way!! Woot!

Nuttin' on tv for me tonight so reading and sleeping.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Hanging out with friends...

Premeditated September issue is done ... almost. I'm giving until the end of the day for some straggling authors to send excerpts. I don't think they'll remember to do it but I'll give them the time, this was the deadline day I gave them. I'm happy with it, very much so. I've added a couple features to each entry and there's a word search puzzle at the end. On to October...

I didn't work today, sticking to my alternate summer schedule. I slept in until 6:30. I walked Tug. I worked on the newsletter. I had lunch with Steve and then I napped. I'm heading over to the Rock Pile at 5 for appetizers and drinks with some of the girls from work. There's nothing on tv for me so maybe I'll do some reading. I keep trying to make headway in the books I'm reading in the evenings but I get too dang tired. Maybe I'll stand a chance tonight.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday!

The month is almost over so I thought I'd share the books that I'm looking forward to next month.

First and foremost and already being dispatched to me from the UK ... and about freaking time! ...

HEARTSTONE by CJ Sansom!!!! To say that I'm experiencing AABA (see previous posts) is an understatement. I can barely contain myself. This is 5th of 5 in series featuring Matthew Shardlake, a lawyer in mid-16th century England.

A WOMAN OF CONSEQUENCE by Anna Dean. Also from the UK and the release date I have is September 1st but I've received no word yet from bookdepository.com. This is 3rd of 3 in series featuring Miss Dido Kent, a 35-year-old amateur sleuth, starting in 1805 Regency England.

DEXTER IS DELICIOUS by Jeff Lindsay. (7th) This is 5th of 5 in series featuring Dexter Morgan, a blood spatter technician for Miami Dade Police Department, and sociopathic serial killer in Florida. The first couple of this series were terrific but the last couple didn't have the magic somehow. Maybe because the writer is focusing on the tv show.

BURY YOUR DEAD by Louise Penny. (28th) This is 6th of 6 in series featuring Armand Gamache, Chief Inspector of the Sûreté du Québec, in the village of Three Pines, in southern Quebec, Canada. I've still to read the 5th book but I really like this series -- a classic mystery.

ON THE LINE by SJ Rozan. (28th) This is 10th of 10 in series featuring Lydia Chin, a 30-something Chinese American private eye, and Bill Smith, a 40-something Army brat private eye in New York City. This is a Bill book.

I've also got coming from the UK:

SACRED TREASON by James Forrester. It's the start of a new historical mystery series set in Tudor England and has been compared to CJ Sansom.

It's going to get super hot again the next couple days. I'm taking tomorrow off again to finish up my newsletter and do a couple other errands.

I finished listening to the audiobook of STORM FRONT by Jim Butcher. This is first in a series of 13 in series featuring Harry Dresden, the only wizard listed in the yellow pages in Chicago. The audiobook reader, actor James Marsters, was fantastic, simply perfect for the voice of Harry and did rather well doing the change in his voice for the other characters. I'm so enamoured of how well it was done that I've made copies of his other books for me to listen to down the road. Here's a description of the story:

Harry gets what he believes to be a stroke of luck - a woman whose husband has disappeared wants to hire Harry to find him AND his friend Lieutenant Karrin Murphy with Special Investigations in the Chicago PD calls Harry in to consult on a murder case. Two paying jobs in one day has Harry thinking that things are looking up, but in truth, Harry's trouble is only just beginning. The murder scene Murphy shows to Harry has him feeling distinctly nervous. Someone very powerful has used Black Magic to murder two people in a violent and horrifying way, and the only way Harry can help Murphy is to figure out the spell the killer used. Not a good idea when Harry is already under the Doom of Damocles, a kind of magic probation, from the all-powerful White Council, whose job it is to ensure that those who abuse magic are dealt with swiftly and permanently. Morgan, the White Council representative monitoring Harry, would just love to nail him for messing with Black Magic. And Morgan and the White Council aren't Harry's only problem. Gentleman Johnny Marcone, Chicago's top mob boss, warns Harry to keep his nose out of this case, which of course Harry can't do. Especially when he somehow becomes the top suspect in these Black Magic murders. Now Harry has to get to work fast and find the real wizard who is committing these atrocities, otherwise, Harry's not going to live to see another week.

Published in 2000; the paperback has 384 pages. Highly recommended.

I don't have anything on tv and I can sleep in until 6:30 tomorrow so maybe I'll get some reading done.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, August 23, 2010

Yeah, that's right

It's Mailbox Monday! Mailbox Monday gathers together for readers the books that came into the house last week. (feel free to share yours) Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

From paperbackswap.com:

THROUGH THE SHERIFF'S EYES by Janice Kay Johnson. Category romance. Quickie read

THE MORE DECEIVED by David Robinson -- next in series for me

Samples for the Kindle:

GAME OF PATIENCE by Susanne Alleyn - first in historical mystery series set right after the French Revolution

THE HUMAN DISGUISE by James O'Neal - 1st in SFF/police procedural series

AN IRISH COUNTRY DOCTOR by Patrick Taylor - 1st in a cosy/contemporary fiction series


We went to see the movie Inception on Saturday night, figuring correctly that most of the crowds would be at the final night of the fair. Very good actors in this movie; the story line is like looking at an MC Escher picture, circling in on itself and not really knowing what is real. I liked it but I would like to watch it again, especially when it comes on out DVD with the director's commentary.

I'm currently reading POISON by Sara Poole. It is the first in a (hoped) new series. It was just published. Here is a description:

In the simmering hot summer of 1492, a monstrous evil is stirring within the Eternal City of Rome. The brutal murder of an alchemist sets off a desperate race to uncover the plot that threatens to extinguish the light of the Renaissance and plunge Europe back into medieval darkness. Determined to avenge the killing of her father, Francesca Giordano defies all convention to claim for herself the position of poisoner serving Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia, head of the most notorious and dangerous family in Italy. She becomes the confidante of Lucrezia Borgia and the lover of Cesare Borgia. At the same time, she is drawn to the young renegade monk who yearns to save her life and her soul. Navigating a web of treachery and deceit, Francesca pursues her father’s killer from the depths of Rome’s Jewish ghetto to the heights of the Vatican itself. In so doing, she sets the stage for the ultimate confrontation with ancient forces
that will seek to use her darkest desires to achieve their own catastrophic ends.

It has 416 pages.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sunday Seconds

Sunday Seconds -- there are books that I would really love to re-read -- if I could make the time. Sometimes books have profound impacts on one's reading experience. Sometimes you just know these books could be even greater if you could go back and read them with again better understanding and life experiences under your belt. Sometimes books don't hold up the memory the second time around -- that's the risk. Sunday Seconds will be a cataloging of that kind of wish list.



It is 1537, a time of revolution that sees the greatest changes in England since 1066. Henry VIII has proclaimed himself Supreme Head of the Church. The country is waking up to savage new laws, rigged trials and the greatest network of informers it has ever seen. Under the orders of Thomas Cromwell, a team of commissioners is sent throughout the country to investigate the monasteries. There can be only one outcome: dissolution.

But on the Sussex coast, at the monastery of Scarnsea, events have spiralled out of control. Cromwell's commissioner, Robin Singleton, has been found dead, his head severed from his body. His horrific murder is accompanied by equally sinister acts of sacrilege – a black cockerel sacrificed on the church altar, and the disappearance of Scarnsea's Great Relic.

Matthew Shardlake, lawyer and long-time supporter of Reform, has been sent by Cromwell into this atmosphere of treachery and death, accompanied by his loyal assistant Mark. His duty is to discover the truth behind the dark happenings at Scarnsea.

The period is shortly after the beheading of Henry’s second wife, Anne Boleyn, and the King’s marriage to Jane Seymour. This was a period of religious revolution in England where Henry declared himself via The Act of Supremacy 1534 "the only Supreme Head in Earth of the Church of England.” That same year the Treasons Act made it high treason punishable by death to refuse to acknowledge the King as such. Both circumstances loom large in the backdrop of C.J. Sansom’s intricate murder mystery. The book’s title is derived from the dissolution of England’s Catholic Monasteries, ordered by Henry through Cromwell. Henry was given the authority to do this by the Act of Supremacy, along with the First Suppression Act (1536, dissolving smaller monasteries) and the Second Suppression Act (1539, dissolving the remaining monasteries). In April 1536 the Augmentations Office was established to handle the receipt and processing of goods confiscated from the dissolved monasteries.

It was nominated for the 2003 Crime Writers' Association (CWA) John Creasey Memorial Dagger, for first books by previously unpublished writers. It was also nominated for the CWA Ellis Peters Historical Dagger in the same year.

Published first in the UK 2007; it has 300 pages.

This is one the finest series to get a taste for historical mysteries. It has depth of character and a rich setting. I absolutely love this time period with all its political and religious upheaval. Sansom is finally releasing his fifth in this series, supposedly next month. I can't wait.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Saturday, August 21, 2010


Meet the sloths from Amphibian Avenger on Vimeo.

I don't even want to know about the Romance section

[from Weekly Geeks]:

P.A.B.D. I know many bookworms who are faced with the same problem. Please read on to see if you have PABD and see how you can help yourself or others suffering from this disorder.

So what is P.A.B.D.?

Post Amazing Book Depression - The over-whelming sad feeling one gets after finishing a great book.

Signs of P.A.B.D.

missing characters

*often includes talking about characters in day to day life -------

ex. I wonder what Katsa and Po are doing.-------

ex. Do you think Cat and Bones will get married?-------

ex. If she doesn't choose Eric, I don't know how I'll survive.

* constant rereading of the same book

* extreme cases can lead to the reading of fan-fiction
*lack of interest in other books

* finding yourself staring at your bookshelf and seeing nothing worth reading

* wandering around the bookstore/library picking up and putting back books

How to live with P.A.B.P.

Find other books by the same author.

* Is there more in the series?

Search for books with similar themes.

* Thanks to the hard work some dedicated book lovers, you can find sites that help you find books similar to those you love.

* Use Amazon to see what others are buying that liked the book.

Have a rebound book.

* Keep a favorite book on hand to immerse yourself in.

Force a friend to read the book

* This will give you a chance to experience reading the book through someone else.

* You will then have someone to endlessly discuss the book with.


I may have had a touch of this after I read THE PASSAGE. When I wasn't reading it, I was thinking about it. I came this close to buying a copy for my sister so we could talk about it. Now I'm in anticipation of the next book but it won't be released until 2012.

I think an extreme version of this is behind the obsession with Jane Austen's books. There are SOOOO many published books out there using Austen's characters that readers can get their "fix". It's probably why so many have been written at all.

There may be an offshoot of this syndrome:

AABA -- Anticipatory Amazing Book Anxiety: the excitement that a book addict will get for a new release coming out.


* Having the release date circled on your calendar

* Being extremely disappointed if the release date gets pushed back

* paying extra shipping to receive it in 1-2 days

* paying full price at a local book store

I'm definitely that way about some authors: CJ Sansom has a new one (FINALLY) coming out next month. The final book of the bridal quartet by Nora Roberts has more than one person hyperventilating. And I must buy the new JD Robb book the day the come out. I have even sometimes driven home at lunch to check the mail when I'm expecting a book. That's pretty bad.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, August 20, 2010

It's the mumble-th anniversary of Lisa's 25th birthday!

I think I may have figured out what is making me ill. I've thought all along that this is an allergy because I had the itchy eyes two years ago in August (last year it didn't happen because I was stuck inside with my leg/kidney situation). My friend at work mentioned that at this time of year she is very allergic to Russian Olive trees which come into full "bloom" in late July/early August. She had it so bad, she said, she had a rash all over. Like this I asked and showed her my arms. Yes, exactly she said. Light bulb! I told her I was taking Benedryl or Zyrtec but she said she takes Claritin D because it's stronger. So I'll be trying that tomorrow. At last, maybe some solutions.

Tonight I have Say Yes to the Dress/Atlanta to watch and Pillars of the Earth. Woot!

Tomorrow is supposed to be near 100 degrees. Yuck-o-rama. I'll be walking Tug early and then hibernating into the basement. Steve is going to either do the handgun class or watch a gun tournament.

I'm thinking of skim reading the rest of INSTRUMENT OF DARKNESS. I'm liking it okay but I just need to be moving along to something else.

And ....


Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, August 19, 2010

And oh what a lovely reflection ...

I read a quickie romance last night. Now back again to the INSTRUMENTS OF DARKNESS. I will. finish. this. book. So I can move on to something else at last.

Not much on tv for me tonight. I'm thinking this cold may actually be an allergy so I'm taking allergy medicine which is making me tired on top of being regular tired. I had this kind of eye allergy in August two years ago so I'm thinking there's something in late summer that I'm allergic to. Anyway, I'll try to read tonight and see how far I get. :)

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

First warning is just a love tap...

Just a quick one tonight. It's hot out today; I'm hot after walking Tug and I've been fighting off a cold or something. Just not feeling 100%. There's nothing on tv tonight for me so I'm hoping to get some good reading in ... and some good sleep tonight. I had thought about going in to work tomorrow for some overtime but I think still I'll take the day off and work on the newsletter and work on the cold symptoms.

Otherwise, same old same old. Just another Tuesday. :)

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, August 16, 2010

Mailbox Monday

It's Mailbox Monday! Mailbox Monday gathers together for readers the books that came into the house last week. (feel free to share yours) Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.


All Kindle all the time last week.

THINK OF A NUMBER by John Verdon




A NAIL THROUGH THE HEART by Tim Hallinen (free)


BOOK OF SHADOWS by Alexandra Sokoloff

ZOO STATION by David Downing

SHADES OF MILK AND HONEY by Mary Robinette Kowol


TRULY, MADLY by Heather Webber


A cold is trying to get me so we'll see how long I last tonight because I'm just blessed tired. For some inconvenient reason the two shows I watch on Mondays are on at the same time tonight, forcing me to choose one. I'm thinking I'll go with Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations because he's in Rome and I love things about Rome.

I've got to do a couple more things online and then fix dinner. See ya'll tomorrow...

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Sunday Seconds

Sunday Seconds -- there are books that I would really love to re-read -- if I could make the time. Sometimes books have profound impacts on one's reading experience. Sometimes you just know these books could be even greater if you could go back and read them with again better understanding and life experiences under your belt. Sometimes books don't hold up the memory the second time around -- that's the risk. Sunday Seconds will be a cataloging of that kind of wish list.



Published in 1951, it is 4th of 5 in series featuring Alan Grant, a Scotland Yard Inspector. Here is the plot summary (from Wikipedia):

Alan Grant, Scotland Yard Inspector is confined to bed in hospital with a broken back. Bored and of restless mind, he becomes intrigued by a reproduction of a portrait of King Richard III brought to him by a friend. He prides himself on being able to read a person's character from his appearance, and King Richard seems to him a gentle and kind and wise man. Why is everyone so sure that he was a cruel murderer? With the help of friends and acquaintances, Alan Grant investigates the case of the Princes in the Tower. Grant spends weeks pondering historical information and documents with the help of an American researcher for the British Museum. Using his detective's logic, he comes to the conclusion that the claim of Richard being a murderer is a fabrication of Tudor propaganda, as is the popular image of the King as a monstrous hunchback. Further, the author explores how history is constructed, and how certain versions of events come to be widely accepted as the truth, despite a lack of evidence. "The Daughter of Time" of the title is from a quote by Sir Francis Bacon: "Truth is the daughter of time, not of authority." Grant comes to understand the ways that great myths are constructed, and how in this case, the victorious Tudors saw to it that their version of history prevailed. Several other such myths are explored by the author, such as the commonly believed (but false) story that troops fired on the public at the 1910 Tonypandy Riot.

Arguments presented in the book in defence of King Richard:
The Bill of Attainder brought by Henry VII against Richard III makes no mention whatsoever of the Princes. There never was any formal accusation, much less a verdict of guilt.
In fact, there is no historical evidence whatsoever that the Princes were found missing from the Tower when Henry VII took over.
The mother of the Princes, Elizabeth Woodville, remained on good terms with Richard. Tey sees this as proof of Richard's innocence. (There are possible explanations for Elizabeth Woodville's behavior, including self-interest, her hope to marry her daughter to Richard, her trying to placate him while Henry made preparations for war - but if she put any of these considerations above the lives of her sons, that would make her an unspeakable monster of evil.)
There was no political advantage for Richard III in killing the young princes. He was legitimately made king. (Under English law there is no absolute undeniable heir to the throne, only an Heir Apparent. In fact, any male person born in England could be declared King by the Star Chamber.)
The Princes were more of a threat to Henry VII as the foundation of his claim to the crown was significantly more remote than theirs.
However, Tey does not address or obscures a number of points of evidence that support the theory that Richard murdered the Princes. For example, one character wonders why no one revolted against Richard if he was such a tyrant. Tey does not then mention that there was a revolt: the Duke of Buckingham specifically cited the Princes as a reason for his uprising against Richard. In addition, regardless of the legality of Richard's dubious claim to the throne after Edward V's proclamation as King, Richard knew the boys would be an obvious and dangerous focal point for any opposition to his reign. As a result, their elimination could serve to remove potential rivals.
A major question concerning the guilt or innocence of Richard is why did Richard himself not produce the princes alive, when rumours about their murder were running rampant through London. Tey's story acknowledges that there were rumours during Richard's lifetime and attributes them to the Croyland Chronicle and to the Lord Chancellor of France. But she claims they had little circulation, and all may have been originated by Tudor sympathiser John Morton. (Other commentators suggest that the Chancellor's source was Dominic Mancini). Tey contends that the princes remained alive throughout Richard's reign and were later killed by Henry.

Well, you can see why I love it. And I have read it many times.


I didn't much done on the newsletter yesterday so I'll have to concentrate on it today. I'll be doing some more laundry, etc.

I finished THE COOKBOOK COLLECTOR by Allegra Goodman last night. I liked parts of it. It covered the era of the dot-com boom and bust and September 11. Like a lot of contemporary fiction, it seemed to lose focus and have too many character's stories going. If she had concentrated solely on the sisters, it would have been even better. Would I recommend it? Yes, I think I would for a pleasant read, passing time.

Now back to INSTRUMENTS OF DARKNESS by Imogen Robertson. I've got to finish at least two books I'm in the middle of so I can move on to others.

Now I've got to put some shoes on and walk Tug before it gets too warm. Tonight: Rubicon on AMC. Woot!

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Saturday, August 14, 2010


Sorry for missing yesterday's post. FIL was in the emergency room. I was there for Steve who was very upset. Turns out to be a touch of pneumonia and a raging urinary infection. He got to go home last night but he is the type of man who has his leg amputated (figuratively) and just throws dirt on it and keeps going. It was a good thing I was there, however, because Steve and MIL were offering no information whatsoever. I had to bring up his diabetes, elicit from MIL his thyroid and high blood pressure medication, that he hadn't eaten anything all day, his symptoms, etc. I mean, they were like statues when the staff was trying to get info on what was wrong with the man. Were they expecting telepathy? I believe they were in some state of shock or something. I just don't know.

I do think there is some kind of cold/flu thing going around. On Thursday, my nearist cubicle mate went home sick with stuffy head and all the trappings. Now this morning I'm phlegmy and my eyes were not great this morning. Dammit. And of course, the hospital is just stewing with gunk and I forgot to not touch anything.

So today: walk Tug, do laundry, vacuum, work on newsletter, read. I still need to clean out the car but those are the priorities. Steve is gone this morning helping with a gun class and then may put in a garage door somewhere in the afternoon.

Still reading THE COOKBOOK COLLECTOR -- I'm liking it overall though the story jumps among too many characters at times. I have so MUCH to read and no time to do it that I'm starting to get really frustrated. All my series reads I haven't done in forever, stuff I've downloaded ...

Last night I watched episode 5 of The Pillars of the Earth. A brief moment of the good guys winning and then the bad guys won again. Sigh.

It's a lovely overcast day but it's supposed to get to about 73 today. Yesterday got so dark with clouds it was just shouting out to go home and read a good book. :) No such luck.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, August 12, 2010

"The Claw" in 3, 2, 1...

I had a strange experience at Barnes & Noble yesterday. I had gone there after my interview to reward myself. I wound up getting a couple magazines but with every book I looked at I kept thinking "I can get this cheaper on the Kindle." I'm not saying I'll never buy a paper book again -- I collect my favorite authors, especially historical mystery ones -- but for the casual reading it makes more sense to get it for a little less.

I've been checking out the mystery list DorothyL again and there's a big rage going on about e-book readers and e-books. What gets me is that there is this complete black and white thing, especially for people who declare they'll never ever read digital. Like there's no other option, all or nothing. Those who've adopted the e-reader haven't given up paper books at all. Does listening to audiobooks mean you'll never read a paper book again? Nope.

We had lunch at MacKenzie River Pizza today to celebrate a birthday of one of the crew. I drove us because everyone wanted to ride in Moby Dick. Other than a not-great parking job, it was fine. They liked it and actually dubbed it "TheDream Machine" and then "The Mystery Machine" because I like mysteries to which I was reminded of "those meddling kids!" of Scooby Doo.

The book that hijacked my current read, becoming the new current read, has now been hijacked itself so now I have an even newer current read. THE COOKBOOK COLLECTOR by Allegra Goodman. Here is a description:

Heralded as “a modern day Jane Austen” by USA Today, National Book Award finalist and New York Times bestselling author Allegra Goodman has compelled and delighted hundreds of thousands of readers. Now, in her most ambitious work yet, Goodman weaves together the worlds of Silicon Valley and rare book collecting in a delicious novel about appetite, temptation, and fulfillment.Emily and Jessamine Bach are opposites in every way: Twenty-eight-year-old Emily is the CEO of Veritech, twenty-three-year-old Jess is an environmental activist and graduate student in philosophy. Pragmatic Emily is making a fortune in Silicon Valley, romantic Jess works in an antiquarian bookstore. Emily is rational and driven, while Jess is dreamy and whimsical. Emily’s boyfriend, Jonathan, is fantastically successful. Jess’s boyfriends, not so much—as her employer George points out in what he hopes is a completely disinterested way.Bicoastal, surprising, rich in ideas and characters, The Cookbook Collector is a novel about getting and spending, and about the substitutions we make when we can’t find what we’re looking for: reading cookbooks instead of cooking, speculating instead of creating, collecting instead of living. But above all it is about holding on to what is real in a virtual world: love that stays.

It was published in July and has 416 pages. It's a stand alone novel.

I don't have anything to watch on tv so maybe I'll read tonight.

I got up a couple times last night to look at the Perseids comet shower. First, at 12:30, it was too cloudy. Then at 2:45 I went out and was so tired and my alarm was going to go off at 4:30 I said to myself that this was ridiculous, I needed sleep more. So I haven't seen anything yet this year. I maybe too cloudy tonight -- it's already overcast now -- because they're prediciting rain overnight and a high tomorrow of 68 so something has to move in and stay for a while. I may not be able to watch it this year. Bah. And I'm already tired. :)

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

And probably racist

The interview went well though it sounds like more travel than initial indications but they said they try to avoid winter travel. They haven't posted the position yet so there will be a wait.

Did the doctor visit, walked Tug, did the interview, rewarded self with a couple magazines from B&N. Did a little work on Premeditated but not a lot. I don't know what to do this evening ... I could read, which I really should do because lately I only get a couple pages done at night before zonking, or I could watch the DVD of The Lovely Bones. Steve has shooting tonight.

I'll have to remember to get up in the middle of the night to watch some comets. Woot!

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday!

From BAD BOY by Peter Robinson:

By the end of August, the waterlogged Yorkshire countryside was a symphony of green and gold under a blue sky scribbled with white clouds. Heaven only knew how the farmers had managed to mow and bale the hay, as the rain seemed to have been falling for days without end, but somehow they had succeeded, and their neat straw cylinders dotted the fields. Bright tractors ploughed in the stubble and turned the earth a dark fecund brown. Smells of the recent harvest and of the coming autumn chill mingled in the mild air. On the moors, the purple heather was in bloom. By the roadside, swallows gathered on the telephone wires preparing for their long flight to South Africa.
Annie Cabbot wished she could go with them as she drove the last few miles to work that Monday morning. A few days on a game reserve would do her the world of good, photographing and sketching giraffes, zebras, leopards, lions and elephants. Then perhaps a tour of the Winelands, a taste of fine Cape Town cuisine and night life.
But it was not to be. She had exhausted her entire holiday allowance for the year, apart from a few days, which she planned to use to create occasional long weekends between now and Christmas. Besides, she couldn’t afford to go to South Africa; she would be hard pushed to pay for a mini-break in Blackpool. Lucky swallows.

This will be published in the US on August 24th.

Busy day at work. Tired now. Nothing on tv for me as much as I can tell so maybe I'll do some reading. Tomorrow I've got an appointment/followup with dermatolgist regarding my psoriasis. I've an interview tomorrow afternoon at 2. Otherwise I hope to get some time in on Premeditated.

Much love,

PK the Bookemonster

Monday, August 9, 2010

Mailbox Monday

It's Mailbox Monday! Mailbox Monday gathers together for readers the books that came into the house last week. (feel free to share yours) Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

I guess I told you about most of what came in last week.

POISON by Sara Poole -- historical mystery, perhaps the start of a new series


I also received from paperbackswap.com, the first book in the historical series by Pat McIntosh, THE HARPER'S QUINE. It features Gil Cunningham, a notary in 15th century Glasgow, Scotland. I've read this one already but I've been meaning to get to the other six books in the series.

I'm currently reading INSTRUMENTS OF DARKNESS by Imogen Roberts. This is first of two in series featuring Harriet Westerman and Gabriel Crowther in 1780 West Sussex, England. Here is a description:

Thornleigh Hall, seat of the Earl of Sussex, dominates its surroundings. Its heir is missing, and the once vigorous family is reduced to a cripple, his whore and his alcoholic second son, but its power endures. Impulsive Harriet Westerman has felt the Hall’s menace long before she happens upon a dead man bearing the Thornleigh arms. The grim discovery cries out for justice, and she persuades reclusive anatomist Gabriel Crowther to her cause, much against his better udgement; he knows a dark path lies before those who stray from society’s expectations. That same day, Alexander Adams is killed in a London music shop, leaving his young children orphaned. His death will lead back to Sussex, and an explosive secret that has already destroyed one family and threatens many others.

It was published in the UK in 2009 and has 384 pages. It just jumped out and at me after being in the TBR pile for many moons and said "Read me now!" You can't fight that.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Sunday Seconds - DUNE

Sunday Seconds -- there are books that I would really love to re-read -- if I could make the time. Sometimes books have profound impacts on one's reading experience. Sometimes you just know these books could be even greater if you could go back and read them with again better understanding and life experiences under your belt. Sometimes books don't hold up the memory the second time around -- that's the risk. Sunday Seconds will be a cataloging of that kind of wish list.


DUNE by Frank Herbert

Oh how I love this book. I first read this in junior high ... I even remember finding it on the shelves in the library at Lewis and Clark Junior High. What an amazing world Herbert built and the philosophies and ethics to be found in a story of political power plays and religious manipulations all based around who controls the Spice. I knew little of how the world worked back then but it started to open my eyes. The cover here isn't the one from the first edition. This is the cover of the one I first read. Just seeing this cover gives me this internal thrill, a buzzing, of recognition that is difficult to describe.

It was published in 1965. It won the Hugo Award in 1966, and the inaugural Nebula Award for Best Novel. Dune is frequently cited as the world's best-selling science fiction novel.It is one thing to postulate the existence of intelligent life in another part of the universe, it is a much different (and more challenging) task to situate this alien culture in a rich world, fully equipped with distinctive flora, fauna, ecology, traditions, institutions, religious beliefs, ancestral conflicts, technologies, myths and other cultural details. The richness of this contextual framework is what typically sets the finer works of speculative fiction apart from the rest. Only a few authors have achieved this at a very high degree.

Here is the story:

Emperor Shaddam IV has come to fear House Atreides because of the growing popularity of Duke Leto Atreides and the fact that Leto's fighting force is beginning to rival the effectiveness of the Emperor's own dreaded Sardaukar, whose (perceived) invincibility helps guarantee the Emperor's power. Shaddam decides that House Atreides must be destroyed, but cannot risk an overt attack on a single House, as this would not be accepted by the Landsraad, the convocation of ruling Houses. The Emperor instead uses the centuries-old feud between House Atreides and House Harkonnen to disguise his assault, enlisting the brilliant and power-hungry Baron Vladimir Harkonnen in his plan to trap and eliminate the Atreides. Shaddam entices Leto to accept the lucrative fief of the desert planet Arrakis, previously controlled by the Harkonnens, and the only known source of the spice melange.

Complicating the political intrigue is the fact that the Duke's son Paul Atreides is an essential part of the Bene Gesserit's secret, centuries-old breeding program to create a superhuman called the Kwisatz Haderach. Leto's concubine, the Bene Gesserit Lady Jessica, had been ordered by the Sisterhood to bear him a daughter who would then be bred with the Harkonnen heir in a union that would likely produce the Kwisatz Haderach. Jessica had defied these orders and instead bore her lover the son he desired, and Jessica recognizes that Paul might actually be the Kwisatz Haderach, born one generation earlier than expected.

The Atreides expect plots and challenges to their rule over Arrakis, and are able to thwart initial Harkonnen traps and complications while simultaneously building trust with the local population of Fremen, humans who live in the deep desert, with whom they hope to ally. However, the Atreides are ultimately unable to withstand a devastating Harkonnen attack, supported by Imperial Sardaukar disguised as Harkonnen troops and aided by a traitor within House Atreides itself — the Suk doctor Wellington Yueh. House Atreides is scattered. Of its important retainers, the Mentat Thufir Hawat is taken by the Baron and eventually convinced to work for his captors; the troubador-soldier Gurney Halleck escapes with the aid of smugglers, whom he also joins; and Duncan Idaho is killed defending Paul and Jessica. Per his bargain, Yueh delivers a captive Leto to the Baron, but double-crosses Harkonnen by ensuring Paul and Jessica's escape. He also provides Leto with a fake tooth that is actually a poison-gas capsule, which he can bite down on, simultaneously committing suicide and assassinating the Baron Harkonnen. The Baron kills Yueh, and Leto dies in this failed attempt on the Baron's life, though the Baron's twisted Mentat Piter De Vries dies with him. Paul and Jessica, aided variously by Duncan, Yueh, and the Fremen leader Liet-Kynes, escape their captors and flee into the deep desert.

Jessica's Bene Gesserit abilities and Paul's developing skills help them join a band of Fremen. Paul and his mother quickly learn Fremen ways while teaching the Fremen the weirding way, a Bene Gesserit method of fighting. Jessica becomes a Reverend Mother, swallowing the poisonous Water of Life while pregnant with her second child; this unborn daughter Alia is subjected to the same ordeal, dangerously acquiring the full abilities of a Reverend Mother before even being born. Paul takes a Fremen lover, Chani, with whom he fathers a son. Years pass, and Paul increasingly recognizes the strength of the Fremen fighting force — during the joint Sardaukar/Harkonnen invasion, the Fremen had killed three Sardaukar for every man they lost — and their potential to overtake even the Sardaukar and win back Arrakis. Living on the spice diet of the Fremen, Paul's prescience increases dramatically, enabling him to foresee future events and gaining him a religious respect from the Fremen, who regard him as their prophesied messiah. As Paul grows in influence, he begins a jihad against Harkonnen rule of the planet under his new Fremen name, Muad'Dib. However, Paul becomes aware through his prescience that, if he is not careful, the Fremen will extend that jihad against all the known universe, which Paul describes as a humanity-spanning subconscious effort to avoid genetic stagnation.

Both the Emperor and the Baron Harkonnen show increasing concern at the fervor of religious fanaticism shown on Arrakis for this "Muad'Dib," not guessing that this leader is the presumed-dead Paul. Harkonnen plots to send his nephew and heir Feyd Rautha as a replacement for his more brutish nephew Glossu Rabban — who is currently in charge of the planet — with the hope of gaining the respect of the now-troublesome Fremen. Winning them over as a fighting force would give him enough power to overtake the Emperor himself. The Emperor, however, is highly suspicious of the Baron and sends spies to watch his movements. Hawat explains the Emperor's suspicions: the Sardaukar, nearly invincible in battle, are trained on the prison planet Salusa Secundus, whose inhospitable conditions allow only the best to survive. Arrakis serves as a similar crucible, and the Emperor fears that the Baron could recruit from it a fighting force to rival his Sardaukar, just as House Atreides had intended to do before their destruction. Paul is reunited with Gurney. Completely loyal to the Atreides, Gurney is convinced that Jessica is the traitor who caused the House's downfall, and nearly kills her before being stopped by Paul. Disturbed that his prescience had not predicted this possibility, Paul decides to take the Water of Life, an act which will either confirm his status as the Kwisatz Haderach or kill him. After three weeks in a near-death state, Paul emerges with his powers refined and focused; he is able to see past, present, and future at will. Looking into space, he sees that the Emperor and the Harkonnens have amassed a huge armada to invade the planet and regain control. Paul also realizes the way to control spice production on Arrakis: saturating spice fields with the water of life would cause a chain reaction that would destroy all spice on the planet.

In an Imperial attack on a Fremen settlement, Paul and Chani's son Leto is killed, and the four-year-old Alia is captured by Sardaukar and brought to the planet's capital Arrakeen, where the Baron Harkonnen is nervously attempting to thwart the Fremen jihad under the close watch of the Emperor. The Emperor is surprised at Alia's defiance of his power and her confidence in her brother, whom she reveals to be Paul Atreides. At that moment, under cover of a gigantic sandstorm, Paul and his army of Fremen attack the city; Alia kills the Baron during the confusion. Paul quickly overtakes the city's defenses and confronts the Emperor, threatening to destroy the spice, thereby ending space travel and crippling both Imperial power and the Bene Gesserit in one blow. Feyd-Rautha challenges Paul to a knife-duel in a final attempt to stop his overthrow, but is defeated despite an attempt at treachery. Realizing that Paul is capable of doing all he has threatened, the Emperor is forced to abdicate and to promise his daughter Princess Irulan in marriage to Paul. Paul ascends the throne, his control of Arrakis and the spice establishing a new kind of power over the Empire that will change the face of the known universe. However, despite being Emperor of the Known Universe, Paul realizes that he will not be able to stop the jihad he has seen in his visions, his legendary status among the Fremen having grown past the point where he can control it.

There are many editions, the book is approximately 600 pages. Do not watch the movie made in the 1980s. Bad. The miniseries made in about 2000 is better. There are many sequels, the best are the ones written by Frank Herbert himself; his son Brian and author Kevin Anderson have taken over the franchise and written in the back story supposedly based on Frank's notes.

Much love,

PK the Bookeemonster

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Pretty Covers

Ahhh, Pillars of the Earth was on last night. Sadly, right now in the story the bad guys are winning. Half way through the miniseries now.

Steve is off helping a handgun class this morning. I've walked Tug and have gotten laundry going. Next up will be vacuuming and working on September's Premeditated.

I've received POISON by Sara Poole in the mail today. I don't know yet if I'll drop the Royal again or just push on through and finish it and then read the new one. Think, think, think.

Weekly Geek: I thought it would be fun to look at book covers. Compile a top ten (or top five) list for the PRETTIEST covers...

In general I think historicals and romances have the advantage in being able to have pretty covers.
This is a dark cover but I like the inside of the cathedral and lone figure. And it is an excellent read.
I've not read this book, but the covers for the whole series has a female in a gorgeous dress so it was difficult to choose. This appeals to me for the gorgeous dress being the focus and the title in a pretty font in gold. Just works for me.

I wish the red of the rose were a little further down and the city at the top a little more dominent but I do like this cover and the burning effect of the edge between the pictures. I haven't read the book so I can't recommend either way.
I love love love the simplicity of this; it is so striking. I love texture of the curled page, the cream and red, the drop of blood, the striped tulip... I just love it. Very classy. I've not read the book but I do have a sample downloaded on the Kindle so it was interesting to me.

This is the UK cover I believe. The US one isn't as striking. The colors of antique gold and the border are very good. The pop of color the girl's dress is just right. The landscape is pretty and the font of the title just works all together. I've not read the book.

This is a terrific book to read. Any cover with books on it is great. And that the books are on an angle with the covers pointed adds interest. It's all about the angles, baby.

Just damn pretty. Some of the author's other books have similar covers. I think the outside border makes it happen. This is a forthcoming book.

All the books in this quartet are gorgeous not only to observe but to feel in your hands. I mean you could put these books out as art. :) It was hard to choose from them all, but I like the composition a little bit better on this one ... the white background with the splash of color in the middle. Fun reads, La Nora is simply the best at creating relationships.Pretty! So you know it's in Scotland and the plaid creates interesting framing angles and the landscape evokes a mysterious isolation to pull you in to see what the book is about. This book was released this month; I've got a sample on my Kindle.

I like the framing on the right and the tint of either evening or early morning overall. It's a window into a mysterious and beautiful place. This book will be released in September.

Phew, this took longer that I had anticipated. I've had fun looking but I've got to get to work on the newsletter. Off you go ...

Much love,

PK the Bookemonster