Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Yeah, happy whatever

It's not as bad as all that. Steve has shooting tonight so I'll be hanging out with the boys, reading, and having a glass of huckleberry wine. I probably won't make it to midnight but the fireworks and the dogs freaking out will awaken me. I may watch something on Netflix, we'll see.

I read that Netflix as a fake midnight/ball drop for kids that can be played at any time so you can get your kids to bed at a reasonable time. Brilliant. 

The super cold spell is supposed to break tomorrow so we'll see. The windchill this morning was -17. Yuck. Ryker likes to sit on the deck; Coda wishes for a sweater. Downtown Billings has a "ball drop" under the sky point. Starts at noon. They expect ten thousand people. They have got to be freaking crazy to be out in cold like this. I imagine a more likely scenario is that they'll be packed in the restaurants and bars until five minutes before midnight. Aren't those businesses lucky. Not.

I'm also reading BROUGHT TO BOOK by Anthea Fraser. This is 1st of 9 in series featuring Rona Parish, a biographer and amateur sleuth, in England. Here's a description:
When successful biographer Rona Parish is asked to write the life-story of a bestselling author, recently deceased, she is intrigued - to say the least. After all, Theo Harvey led a very colourful life, and died in mysterious circumstances. But Rona's husband Max is wary and, it soon becomes apparent, with good reason...As Rona begins to delve into Theo Harvey's life and death, and to interview his friends and family - some more willing than others - she realises that she has taken on a poisoned chalice.
Published in 2003, it has 224 pages. This is a library book.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

No, really, this is soooo fascinating. Never mind I'm a captive audience.

For my online mystery reading group, 4MA, every year we post our Top Ten reads for 2014. The top ten list I have here is limited to only the crime fiction. The top of the top is the Sansom book. Just beyond wonderful. The others are in no particular order; I enjoyed them all immensely.

THE LONG WAY HOME by Louise Penny
THEFT OF LIFE by Imogen Robertson
THE OUTCAST DEAD by Elly Griffiths
A GRAVE MATTER by Anna Lee Huber
A FATAL ENQUIRY by Will Thomas
THE PARIS AFFAIR by Teresa Grant

The end of the year is also the time to make resolutions. Yeah, yeah, healthy, blah blah blah, save money, yadda yadda yadda... Resolutions I can keep, usually, are reading resolutions. For the past couple years I've resolved to read one nonfiction book a month. I didn't quite do that in 2014. However, there were many nonfiction books started and not finished which I don't calculate into the equation; only finished books count. So I COULD have, I just chose not to. I think I'll give this one a rest though I will still be reading some nonfiction because I like to. No, this year, I'm thinking of something else.

I've read the first two books in Dorothy Dunnett's Lymond series. I've not read the other four. Nor have I read her Niccolo series. I have them. They're big books with dense language which I like but I'm usually lured away by a new release. So. Resolution number one: Read one Dorothy Dunnett book a month. Or should I make that every two months because they're bigger books? I'll have to think on that.

Second reading resolution. I was shocked and flabbergasted when I put together my top ten list that there were some authors I really enjoy that I haven't read in months. Months!  AND I HAVE THE BOOKS. These are ones that are next-in-series for me.

And this photo is some but not all but I have to make a dent somehow. So, Resolution number two, read one book from the TBR pile a month.

And that is it. Can't overdo these things.

Cold cold again today. A high of 6 expected.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, December 29, 2014

And it lasted 30 seconds. A new record!

I'm currently reading FLAG IN EXILE by David Weber. This is 5th of 15 in series featuring Honor Harrington, an officer in the Royal Manticoran Navy (RMN), the space navy of the Star Kingdom of Manticore. Here's a description:
Hounded into retirement and disgrace by political enemies, cut to the heart by the murder of the man she loved, and bereft of confidence in herself and her abilities, Captain Honor Harrington has retreated to the planet Grayson to take up her role as Steadholder while she tries to heal her bitter wounds. But the People's Republic of Haven is rising from defeat to threaten Grayson anew, and the newborn Grayson Navy needs her experience desperately. It's a call Honor cannot refuse, yet even as she once more accepts the duty whose challenges she fears she can no longer meet, powerful men who hate and fear the changes she's brought to their world are determined to reverse them. They have a plan ... and for it to succeed Honor Harrington must die. Two irresistible forces are rushing together to crush Grayson between them, and only one woman uncertain of her capabilities, weary unto death, and marked for murder-stands between her adopted planet and its devastation.
 Published in 2001, it has 424 pages. 

Actually, I didn't do much reading this past 4-day weekend. As I mentioned previously, I watched the repeat of Outlander on Thursday. On Friday and Saturday, I was hooked on an 8-episode Brit crime drama called Broadchurch starring David Tennant. The series focuses on the death of an 11-year-old boy and the impact which grief, mutual suspicion, and media attention have on the town.

What an amazing show. I usually don't have patience for crime dramas but this had me enthralled. Everyone has secrets to be uncovered. The acting was great. The show won awards. From interviews with the cast I saw, they didn't know "whodunnit" themselves until near the end of filming. The good news is that there is a second season that will be on BBCAmerica in March! Woot!

I'm that excited.

Back at it again today. Cold, single digit weather for the next two days.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, December 26, 2014

Christmas - afterward

Steve and I had a very very laid-back Christmas yesterday. A while ago he said he'd never seen The Princess Bride movie. Wha??!! One of the channels was having a marathon of it so we watched it in the afternoon but I think he dozed at times. Then I watched the Outlander marathon for the rest of the day and fell in love with Jamie all over again. You know, in the Outlander world, I'm an apostate. I really don't and won't read beyond the first book (eons ago I read through book 3 but don't remember much) even though there are now, what, eight in the series? Claire and Jamie go through so many trials in their relationship ... I just want to stop where they're pretty much happy and consider it "the end." I know I will watch the Starz show beyond the first season so I'm screwed in that department coming next year. BTW, here's something to look at:

The actor was made for the part, eh? Yeah, you're lucky I didn't use a picture from the wedding night episode. And the rest of season one won't continue until April 4th. Bah.

In the meantime, I don't have much in the way of plans for today. Maybe some laundry. I'm in between books at the moment so I'll be doing some dabbling to see what grabs me. I think I will cook with my new Airfryer tonight, some homemade fries. I may do some viewing on Netflix or Youtube. Mostly, just enjoying the amazing day off.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Well, SOMEBODY was hogging the sleigh, so...

Merry Christmas Eve!

Aiming to get away from work between noon and 1pm. Then heading for parents. Then the evening just the two of us (and the dogs). I have lovely fresh bones for the boys for their presents. I still need to wrap presents and still expecting one of Steve's to be delivered -- I don't think it will make it today. Ah well.

Then we're closed on Friday for the first time ever in the history of the family business so it is a gorgeous four and a half day weekend. Woot!

Have a wonderful and safe holiday!

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

He knows you've crinkled food wrappers two rooms away

I'm currently reading THE BRAQUE CONNECTION by Estelle Ryan. This is 3rd of 6 in series featuring nonverbal communication expert, insurance investigator, and high functioning autistic Doctor Genevieve Lenard. Here's a description:
When world-renowned nonverbal communication expert Doctor Genevieve Lenard wakes up in an unknown location, drugged and kidnapped, it pushes the limits of her autism coping skills. For the last year, Russian philanthropist and psychopath Tomasz Kubanov has been studying Genevieve just as she and her team have been studying him. Now forged paintings and mysterious murders are surfacing around her team, with evidence pointing to one of them as the killer. Genevieve knows Kubanov is behind these senseless acts of violence. What she doesn't understand are the inconsistencies between his actions and the cryptic messages he sends. Something has triggered his unpredictable behaviour, something that might result in many more deaths, including those she cares for. Because this time, Kubanov has nothing to lose.
Published in 2013, it has 377 pages. 

Favorite Christmas movies. There are classics like It's a Wonderful Life, there are Hallmark Channel"s Christmas factory ones that suck you in against your will. And here are some of the ones I like:

A modern classic now, Love Actually. Ensemble cast. Very British humor, with pathos. This is the ending scene that reminds us that the most important things are often right here and that there's no need to search for happiness if we don't have in mind that our family and our friends are the most important things in the world.

The FUNNIEST Christmas movie is A Christmas Story. There are too many fabulous scenes so here's the original trailer:

My favorite of the 1960s specials is Santa Claus is Coming to Town with Fred Astaire and Mickey Rooney as the red-haired Kris:

And there is only ONE Grinch. The animated one:

And for the true meaning of Christmas, the best is A Charlie Brown Christmas:

I guess you can tell my influence comes mostly from my kidhood, eh?

For many years, there was a movie from 1977 called The Gathering that I somehow seemed to watch for every time. They don't show it anymore, too many to choose from now I suppose. It starred Ed Asner about a man who tries to set things right with his estranged family after learning he has a short time to live and have one last Christmas together.

And then there are the "anti-Christmas" movies like Die Hard which are actually just movies with a Christmas time-fame but not really about Christmas, but they get lumped in there anyway. I have to admit, Bruce Willis was cool and Alan Rickman was a very sexy bad guy in this movie.

It's Christmas Eve Eve. Are you ready?

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, December 22, 2014

But Santa's cookies and milk were good

Currently reading THRONE OF GLASS by Sarah J Maas. This is the 1st of a fantasy trilogy. Here's a description:
After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin. Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king's council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she'll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom. Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she's bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her... but it's the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best. Then one of the other contestants turns up dead... quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

Published in 2012, it has 432 pages. This is a digital loan from the library. 

I started to listen to some Christmas music today. This is my favorite and my favorite version of it:

But, I've always like this one too:

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, December 19, 2014

You say it's Friday?


Well, I think I may be fighting some kind of bug. Not a cold. So I'll be taking it real easy this weekend. Oh, but I will be able to vacuum - it was fixed in two days, go figure, not the one to two weeks they told me on Tuesday. They just wanted to sell me a vacuum.

I'm back to the Peter Robinson book so I will finish that this weekend. Lots and lots of other things to read, sigh. Good thing there's not much on TV.

Have a good weekend, folks.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Meh, only Wednesday?

Nope, didn't get much reading done again last night. One can only hope for tonight. Yes, I'm still obsessing. This is now my computer wallpaper:

And to show this actor's emotions in this role, here's Judas' death:

Drew Sarich [Judas] Judas' Death by annasha

Ok. I promise, tomorrow I won't talk about it.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Why we don't put up a tree; Coda would do this.

I'm obsessing. On, there's a performance of Jesus Christ Superstar that I am watching over and over and over. First, if you know me, JCS is my all time, hands-down, no question about it favorite all time musical, ever since I saw a production when I was young. This is a performance I came across was from 2005 in Amstetten, Austria (yes, in English). The actor playing Jesus is horrible, doesn't have the vocals to do much of anything. The actress playing Mary Magdalen is shrill and likes to make up her own tunes along the way. The performance by Herod is truly embarrassing. But the guy playing Judas? OMG, he is PERFECTION, and I don't say it lightly. Holy freakin' moley. Drew Sarich. The best I have ever seen or heard. The guy sings amazingly and the emotions he exudes.... just wow. Youtube won't let me embed a clip but go to this page and you can see his performance of Jesus Christ Superstar, the song:

Here's the whole show if you have the time (I skip the bad songs, i.e., Jesus, Mary Magdalen, Herod). The actor doing Pilate is very good, too, surprisingly. The Judas death scene is also just amazing. But go to 1:27:47 if you just want to watch the Jesus Christ Superstar performance:

I am just gobsmacked and wish I had a time machine to go see all performances of this that they did. Drew Sarich has also sung the Jesus in a later production and sings like an angel but the staging is strange, more like a concert version. Oh what the heck, listen to him do Gethsemane:

On a more mundane matter, I took my vacuum in to be cleaned because it just wasn't doing the best it could and I'm told because they don't have Dyson parts in, it will be a week or two. Really? Bah.

I'm hoping Steve's Christmas present arrives in time. I have one gift for him but I realized it probably didn't have enough oomph by itself so yesterday I picked out something else to go with it but it's through a third party via Amazon so my fingers are crossed. Sigh.

I spent last night pretty much watching the above mentioned musical on the computer last night. Maybe tonight this obsession will let me do some reading. Sometimes I just have to ride it out.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster 

Monday, December 15, 2014

Coffee, stat ... er, in a bottle....

We've got snow again, just about a half inch. Unfortunately, it rained first so it has been icy most of the day. I'd rather drive on six inches of snow that slick streets.

Not much else going on. Dallas won last night so that's looking good. The Voice finale is tonight but I haven't really been watching though I've been following the results. We'll see if I'll watch it.

We watched Guardians of the Galaxy this weekend. The worldbuilding is great and it is FUNNY. Surprised me.

So. I finished CALLANDER SQUARE by Anne Perry. That was 2nd in the series so a re-read for me. It was a digital loan from the library. I may just end of reading tonight.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, December 12, 2014

TGIF for reals

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, December 11, 2014

No, probably more like "Stop touching me"

Currently reading WATCHING THE DARK by Peter Robinson. This is 20th of 22 in series featuring Alan Banks, Eastvale detective chief inspector, in Yorkshire, England. Here's a description:
A decorated detective inspector is murdered on the tranquil grounds of the St. Peter's Police Treatment Centre, shot through the heart with a crossbow arrow, and compromising photographs are discovered in his room. Detective Chief Inspector Alan Banks is well aware that he must handle the highly sensitive—and dangerously explosive—investigation with the utmost discretion. Because the case may involve police corruption, an officer from Professional Standards, Inspector Joanna Passero, has arrived to work with Banks and his team. Though he tries to keep an open mind and offer his full cooperation, the dedicated Banks and his practical investigative style clash with Passero's cool demeanor and by-the- book professionalism. All too soon, the seasoned detective finds himself under uncomfortable scrutiny, his methods second-guessed. As Banks digs deeper into the life and career of the victim, a decorated cop and recent widower named Bill Quinn, he comes to believe that Quinn's murder may be linked to an unsolved missing persons case. Six years earlier, a pretty nineteen-year-old English girl named Rachel Hewitt made national headlines when she disappeared without a trace in Tallinn, Estonia. Convinced that finding the truth about Rachel will lead to Quinn's killer, Banks follows a twisting trail of clues that lead from England to the dark, cobbled alleys of Tallinn's Old Town. But the closer he seems to solving the complicated cold case, the more it becomes clear that someone doesn't want the past stirred up. While Banks prowls the streets of Tallinn, DI Annie Cabbot, recovered from her near-fatal shooting and back at the station in Eastvale, is investigating a migrant labor scam involving corrupt bureaucrats and a loan shark who feeds on the poor. As evidence in each investigation mounts, Banks realizes the two are linked—and that solving them may put even more lives, including his own, in jeopardy.

Published in 2012, it has 368 pages.  This is a loan from the library.

Also reading THE WORD EXCHANGE by Alena Graedon. This is a stand alone SFF novel. Here's a description:
In the not-so-distant future, the forecasted “death of print” has become a reality. Bookstores, libraries, newspapers, and magazines are things of the past, and we spend our time glued to handheld devices called Memes that not only keep us in constant communication but also have become so intuitive that they hail us cabs before we leave our offices, order takeout at the first growl of a hungry stomach, and even create and sell language itself in a marketplace called the Word Exchange.  Anana Johnson works with her father, Doug, at the North American Dictionary of the English Language (NADEL), where Doug is hard at work on the last edition that will ever be printed. Doug is a staunchly anti-Meme, anti-tech intellectual who fondly remembers the days when people used email (everything now is text or videoconference) to communicate—or even actually spoke to one another, for that matter. One evening, Doug disappears from the NADEL offices, leaving a single written clue: ALICE. It’s a code word he devised to signal if he ever fell into harm’s way. And thus begins Anana’s journey down the proverbial rabbit hole . . . Joined by Bart, her bookish NADEL colleague, Anana’s search for Doug will take her into dark  basements and subterranean passageways; the stacks and reading rooms of the Mercantile Library; and secret meetings of the underground resistance, the Diachronic Society. As Anana penetrates the mystery of her father’s disappearance and a pandemic of decaying language called “word flu” spreads, The Word Exchange becomes a cautionary tale that is at once a technological thriller and a meditation on the high cultural costs of digital technology.

Published in 2014, it has 386 pages. This is on the Kindle. 

Nothing on TV but sometime in the next three evenings, I think we'll watch Guardians of the Galaxy via On Demand. Just don't know when it will work out best. Otherwise, yeah, reading.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The monsters -- or evil cats -- won't get you

I read yesterday THE BOOK OF IVY by Amy Engel. This is the 1st of (I think) a dystopian young adult trilogy. Here's a description:
Ivy is the granddaughter of Westfall (aka the losing side) founder, and as the daughter of a powerless (and power hungry) leader, she's been brainwashed for years in the righteousness of a cause she knows very little about. As per tradition in their community, she is being married at the ripe old age of 16 to a boy from the winning side. This is a custom done to maintain the peace in the community, however as you can expect, Ivy isn't the least bit happy...especially because she knows who she is going to marry. The lucky boy is Bishop Lattimer, the son of the president (aka the winning side). But Ivy has a major secret. She must kill Bishop to aid her father and sister in their plan to regain power in Westfall.
Published in 2014, it has 304 pages. I'm always on the lookout for a good YA dystopian after reading THE HUNGER GAMES, DIVERGENT, and others. This is not top tier like those two, but it does resonate near the top.  The worldbuilding is mostly well thought out, with some complicated issues, and I think the first person point of view is always a plus. And as my brother would say, "What is it with those 16-year-old girls!" Usually, I come to these trilogies when they're completed. Not this time. I have to wait a year for the second book. Bah.

And I am about to start THE SECRET KEEPER by Kate Morton. This is a stand alone. Here's a description:
During a summer party at the family farm in the English countryside, sixteen-year-old Laurel Nicolson has escaped to her childhood tree house and is happily dreaming of the future. She spies a stranger coming up the long road to the farm and watches as her mother speaks to him. Before the afternoon is over, Laurel will witness a shocking crime. A crime that challenges everything she knows about her family and especially her mother, Dorothy—her vivacious, loving, nearly perfect mother. Now, fifty years later, Laurel is a successful and well-regarded actress living in London. The family is gathering at Greenacres farm for Dorothy’s ninetieth birthday. Realizing that this may be her last chance, Laurel searches for answers to the questions that still haunt her from that long-ago day, answers that can only be found in Dorothy’s past. Dorothy’s story takes the reader from pre–WWII England through the blitz, to the ’60s and beyond. It is the secret history of three strangers from vastly different worlds—Dorothy, Vivien, and Jimmy—who meet by chance in wartime London and whose lives are forever entwined. 
Published in 2011, it has 597 pages. This is a digital loan from the library. I really loved her previous book, THE HOUSE AT RIVERTON, so I'll give this a try.

And finally, I have to share this. I think this is brilliant and just funny. How do monks who've taken a vow of silence sing Hallelujah? This way:

I absolutely love it!

Nothing on TV tonight for me so I'd better get some reading done, stat.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

I don't know why...

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. tricked me. TONIGHT is the mid-season finale. I am very glad I have one more episode to watch and it's supposed to be a doozy.

And then there will be nothing on for a few weeks for me. In sadness, here's a photo of Director Coulson:

I had better get a lot of reading done.

I ordered some posters for my office at work. My little in-jokes for the shows I like:

From The Walking Dead:

From Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.:
From Star Trek:

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, December 8, 2014

Izzat Monday out there?


I'm currently reading an autobiography by Cary Elwes, AS YOU WISH, which is his perspective on the making of The Princess Bride movie. Here's a description:
From actor Cary Elwes, who played the iconic role of Westley in The Princess Bride, comes a first-person account and behind-the-scenes look at the making of the cult classic film filled with never-before-told stories, exclusive photographs, and interviews with costars Robin Wright, Wallace Shawn, Billy Crystal, Christopher Guest, and Mandy Patinkin, as well as author and screenwriter William Goldman, producer Norman Lear, and director Rob Reiner. The Princess Bride has been a family favorite for close to three decades. Ranked by the American Film Institute as one of the top 100 Greatest Love Stories and by the Writers Guild of America as one of the top 100 screenplays of all time, The Princess Bride will continue to resonate with audiences for years to come. Cary Elwes was inspired to share his memories and give fans an unprecedented look into the creation of the film while participating in the twenty-fifth anniversary cast reunion. In As You Wish he has created an enchanting experience; in addition to never-before seen photos and interviews with his fellow cast mates, there are plenty of set secrets and backstage stories.
Published in 2014, it has 272 pages. This is a digital loan from the library. 

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Bah, it's only Thursday

It would be nice to go to a movie tonight. We'll see.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Growing up in 23 seconds....

I'm currently reading NO GRAVES AS YET by Anne Perry. This is 1st of 5 in series of featuring Matthew Reavley, a British intelligence officer, and the Reavley family, in London, England, in the World War I. Here's a description:
On a sunny afternoon in late June, Cambridge professor Joseph Reavley is summoned from a student cricket match to learn that his parents have died in an automobile crash. Joseph’s brother, Matthew, as officer in the Intelligence Service, reveals that their father had been en route to London to turn over to him a mysterious secret document—allegedly with the power to disgrace England forever and destroy the civilized world. A paper so damning that Joseph and Matthew dared mention it only to their restless younger sister. Now it has vanished. What has happened to this explosive document, if indeed it ever existed? How had it fallen into the hands of their father, a quiet countryman? Not even Matthew, with his Intelligence connections, can answer these questions. And Joseph is soon burdened with a second tragedy: the shocking murder of his most gifted student, beautiful Sebastian Allard, loved and admired by everyone. Or so it appeared. Meanwhile, England’s seamless peace is cracking—as the distance between the murder of an Austrian archduke by a Serbian anarchist and the death of a brilliant university student by a bullet to the head of grows shorter by the day.
Published in 2003, it has 352 pages. This is from the library. I tried to read this when it first came out but I wasn't "into" WWI stories yet. Since then, I've enjoyed Charles Todd and others so I guess I may be ready for this again.

Also reading THE RINGS OF HAVEN by Ryk Brown. This is 2nd of 12 in The Frontiers Saga, a space opera.  Here's a description:
Episode 2
A ship stranded halfway across the galaxy…
A difficult and lengthy journey home…
A homeworld in urgent need of their return…
And now they are running out of food…
The crew of the Aurora must now trust their new allies in order to survive. This is the continuing saga of newly-made Captain Nathan Scott and his valiant crew of the Aurora. The Aurora survived the Ta'Akar attack and is now trying to get repairs needed done before they are detected. The Captain is planet side with a local farmer trying to make a deal for food and get some more information about Haven when they are discovered by the Ta'Akar.

Published in 2012, it has 240 pages. This is on the Kindle.

Nothing on TV tonight for me so I hope to read.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Dreams of playing fetch for some reason

Starting to warm up outside. It was 29 already at 5:30 this morning. I finished the Marie Lu book. It was "meh." Definitely young adult, rather TOO young adult in the writing. I'll probably finish the trilogy some day. It's not making rush out for the next book whatsoever.

I have the mid-season finale of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to watch tonight:

And then it won't be back on until February. We'll miss Coulson:

And I'm still angry at the writers of The Walking Dead for killing off Beth.

This sums it up:

(reference to phrase Carol used when she had to do a mercy killing).

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, December 1, 2014

It's okay, it's only TV

I'm currently reading LEGEND by Marie Lu. This is 1st of a young adult dystopian trilogy. Here's a description:
What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.  From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths - until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias's death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.

Published in 2011, it has 352 pages.

Today I'm starting my "healthy-only" food plan. That means no preservatives, chemicals, or fake food. Only real and healthy food 90% of the time. I made a vat of broth from the turkey and this morning was the first that I had some. Good, nutritious bone broth becomes gelatin when done right. And it was!! I did it correctly!  My last "bad" dinner was spaghetti. :)

Last night's The Walking Dead mid-season finale was a tough one. A beloved main character was killed off and I'm so pissed about it! Dammit! And, yes, it's fiction and, yes, I cried.

 Mid-season finale tomorrow night of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Bah. Nobody better freakin' die.

It's been negative 15 and negative 13 the last two mornings so the boys and I have gone for rides instead of walks. It's supposed to get to the 40s by Thursday.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, November 28, 2014

Tired of turkey? Spaghetti eating contest!

I'm reading John Cleese's autobiography, SO ANYWAY. Cleese is a member of Monty Python. I haven't wanted to put it down, it's rather funny. Here's a description:
John Cleese’s  huge comedic influence has stretched across generations; his sharp irreverent eye and the unique brand of physical comedy he perfected with Monty Python, on Fawlty Towers, and beyond now seem written into comedy’s DNA. In this rollicking memoir, So, Anyway…, Cleese takes readers on a Grand Tour of his ascent in the entertainment world, from his humble beginnings in a sleepy English town and his early comedic days at Cambridge University (with future Python partner Graham Chapman who was becoming a doctor), to the founding of the landmark comedy troupe that would propel him to worldwide renown. Cleese was just days away from graduating Cambridge and setting off on a law career when he was visited by two BBC executives, who offered him a job writing comedy for radio. That fateful moment—and a near-simultaneous offer to take his university humor revue to London’s famed West End—propelled him down a different path, cutting his teeth writing for stars like David Frost and Peter Sellers, and eventually joining the five other Pythons to pioneer a new kind of comedy that prized invention, silliness, and absurdity. Along the way, he found his first true love with the actress Connie Booth and transformed himself from a reluctant performer to a world class actor and back again. Twisting and turning through surprising stories and hilarious digressions—with some brief pauses along the way that comprise a fascinating primer on what’s funny and why—this story of a young man’s journey to the pinnacle of comedy is a masterly performance by a master performer.
 Published in 2014, it has 400 pages. This is a digital loan from the library. I've included an excerpt at the end of this post.

NOT going anywhere to shop today though I need milk so I'll stop at a convenience store on the way home. Our dinner yesterday turned out well and it was nice to fill our plate and sit on the couch and watch TV. We'll agree to not talk about the Dallas game, eh? I put the turkey carcass and bones back in the turkey roaster after I deboned it and I made broth by simmering it all night. This is the first batch for my food plan that starts on Monday.  I may use that roaster more rather than the crock pot I was planning because I can control the temp better.

It is super mild today, almost 50 but the cold front hits tomorrow and the weekend will be yucky with snow and single digit temps. I'm urging Steve to drive to Townsend to pick up his mom today rather than tomorrow.  My main selling point is that he would then be able to sleep in tomorrow when my main concern is him driving on icy roads. So, I'll be hunkering down with the boys anyway.

Have a lovely day and weekend...

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

An excerpt from SO, ANYWAY…
By John Cleese

I made my first public appearance on the stairs up to the school nurse’s room, at St. Peter’s Preparatory School, Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, England, on September 13, 1948. I was eight and five-sixths. My audience was a pack of nine-year-olds, who were jeering at me and baying, “Chee-eese! Chee-eese!” I kept climbing the steps, despite the feelings of humiliation and fear. But above all, I was bewildered. How had I managed to attract so much attention? What had I done to provoke this aggression? And . . . how on earth did they know that my family surname had once been Cheese?

As Matron “Fishy” Findlater gave me the customary new-boy physical examination, I tried to gather my thoughts. My parents had always warned me to keep away from “nasty rough boys.” What, then, were they doing at a nice school like St. Peter’s? And how was I supposed to avoid them?

Much of my predicament was that I was not just a little boy, but a very tall little boy. I was five foot three, and would pass the six-foot mark before I was twelve. So it was hard to fade away into the background, as I often wished to—particularly later when I’d become taller than any of the masters. It didn’t help that one of them, Mr. Bartlett, always referred to me as “a prominent citizen.”

In addition, as a result of my excessive height, I had “outgrown my strength,” and my physical weakness meant that I was uncoordinated and awkward; so much so that a few years later my PE teacher, Captain Lancaster, was to describe me as “six foot of chewed string.” Add to that the fact that I had had no previous experience of the feral nature of gangs of young boys, and you will understand why my face bore the expression of an authentic coward as “Fishy” opened the door and coaxed me out towards my second public appearance.

“Don’t worry, it’s only teasing,” she said. What consolation was that? You could have said the same at Nuremberg. But at least the chanting had stopped, and now there was an expectant silence as I forced myself down the stairs.  Then…

“Are you a Roundhead or a Cavalier?”


Faces were thrust at me, each one of them demanding, “Round­head or Cavalier?” What were they talking about?

Had I understood the question, I would almost certainly have fainted, such a delicate little flower was I. (And perhaps I should explain to the more delicately nurtured that I was not being asked to offer my considered views on the relative merits of the opposing forces in the English Civil War, but to reveal whether or not I had been circumcised.) However, my first day at prep school was not a total failure. By the time I got home I had learned the meaning of two new words—“pathetic” and “wet”—though I had to find Dad’s dictionary to look up “sissy.”

Why was I so . . . ineffectual? Well, let’s begin at my beginning. I was born on October 27, 1939, in Uphill, a little village south of Weston-super-Mare, and separated from it by the mere width of a road which led inland from the Weston seafront. My first memory, though, is not of Uphill but of a tree in the village of Brent Knoll, a few miles away, under whose shade I recall lying, while I looked through its branches to the bright blue sky above. The sunlight is catching the leaves at different angles, so that my eye flickers from one patch of colour to the next, the verdant foliage displaying a host of verdant hues. (I thought I would try to get “verdant,” “hues” and “foliage” into this paragraph, as my English teachers always believed that they were signs of creative talent. Though I probably shouldn’t have used “verdant” twice.)

Of course, I’m not sure it is my first memory; I’m sure I used to think it was; and I like to think it was, too, because it would make sense, baby me lying in a pram, contentedly watching the interplay of the glinting verdant foliage and its beautiful hues.
One thing I do know for certain, though, is that shortly before this incident with the tree, the Germans bombed Weston-super-Mare. I’ll just repeat that…
On August 14, 1940, German planes bombed Weston-super-Mare. This is verifiable: it was in all the papers. Especially the Weston Mer­cury. Most Westonians were confident the raid had been a mistake. The Germans were a people famous for their efficiency, so why would they drop perfectly good bombs on Weston-super-Mare, when there was nothing in Weston that a bomb could destroy that could possibly be as valuable as the bomb that destroyed it? That would mean that every explosion would make a tiny dent in the German economy.

The Germans did return, however, and several times, which mys­tified everyone. Nevertheless I can’t help thinking that Westonians actually quite liked being bombed: it gave them a sense of signifi­cance that was otherwise lacking from their lives. But that still leaves the question why would the Hun have bothered? Was it just Teutonic joie de vivre? Did the Luftwaffe pilots mistake the Weston seafront for the Western Front? I have heard it quite seriously put forward by older Westonians that it was done at the behest of William Joyce, the infamous “Lord Haw-Haw,” who was hanged as a traitor in 1944 by the British for making Nazi propaganda radio broadcasts to Britain during the war. When I asked these amateur historians why a man of Irish descent who was born in Brooklyn would have such an animus against Weston that he would buttonhole Hitler on the matter, they fell silent. I prefer to believe that it was because of a grudge held by Reichsmarschall Hermann Goering on account of an unsavoury in­cident on Weston pier in the 1920s, probably involving Noël Coward and Terence Rattigan.

My father’s explanation, however, makes the most sense: he said the Germans bombed Weston to show that they really do have a sense of humour.

Whatever the truth of the matter, two days after that first raid we had moved to a quaint little Somerset village called Brent Knoll. Dad had had quite enough of big bangs during his four years in the trenches in France, and since he was up to nothing in Weston that was vital to the war effort, he spent the day after the bombing driv­ing around the countryside near Weston until he found a small farm­house, owned by a Mr. and Mrs. Raffle, who agreed to take the Cleese family on as paying guests. I love the fact that he didn’t mess around. We were out of there! And it was typically smart of him to find a farm, where, at a time of strict rationing, an egg or a chicken or even a small pig could go missing without attracting too much attention.

Mother told me once that some Westonians privately criticised Dad for retreating so soon. They apparently felt it would have been more dignified to have waited a week or so before running away. I think this view misses the essential point of running away, which is to do it the moment the idea has occurred to you. Only an obses­sional procrastinator would cry, “Let’s run for our lives, but not till Wednesday afternoon.”

Back to the tree. I revisited the farm many years later, and, just as I thought I remembered, there was a huge chestnut tree in the middle of the front lawn, under which I might easily have lain in a pram. In 1940 the farmhouse had been one of a row of houses of me­dium size strung along a road, with fields opposite; it didn’t look very farm-like from the front, but when you walked up the drive and got to the back of the house you saw there was a proper farmyard, with mud and chickens and rusty farm equipment and ferrets in cages and rabbits in wooden hutches.

And it was this location that provides my second memory. (It must come after the first because in it I am now standing up.) I was bitten by a rabbit.

Or rather, I was nibbled by a rabbit, but, because I was such a weedy, namby-pamby little pansy, I reacted as though I’d lost a limb. It was the sheer unfairness of it all that so upset me. One minute, I was saying, “Hello, Mr. Bunny!” and smiling at its sweet little face and funny floppy ears. The next, the fucker savaged me. It seemed so gratuitous. What, I asked myself, had I done to the rabbit to deserve this psychotic response?

The more pertinent question, though, is: why was I such a wuss? And the obvious answer is that it’s because I was the only child of older, over-protective parents. I have a memory (No. 3) to support this. I’m now about three and am in the Red Cow Inn, the hub and beating heart of Brent Knoll. Somehow I bang my hand, and just before I burst into tears, I hold it up to my father and howl, “Daddy, look! I’ve hurt my precious thumb!” This, to my astonishment, gets a big laugh. Is my thumb not precious, I wonder? Dad certainly thinks it is. When the occasion demands, he always says, “Oh, you’ve hurt your precious ——— [fill in applicable body part].”

I hesitate to criticise Dad, because what sanity I have I owe to his loving kindness. But there’s no doubt that he did pamper me, and such early coddling was one of the reasons I embarked on a wussy lifestyle. Throughout my schoolboy days I never felt very manly, or strong, or virile, or vigorous, or healthily aggressive. At school I avoided playground “gangs,” because I didn’t understand why anyone would want to behave like that. I loved ball games, but was always appalled at how rough, for example, rugby looked, even at the safe distance I kept while pretending to play it. When I was seventeen, my assistant Clifton College housemaster, Alec MacDonald, finally took me to task for funking tackles. Describing my efforts as “danc­ing around like a disabled fairy,” he ordered me to watch while he gave a demonstration of how to tackle properly. He asked a member of the first XV, Tony Rogers, to run at him. He closed in on Rogers, and then went in hard, just as Rogers tried to sidestep him. The result was that the top of Mr. MacDonald’s head came into sharp contact with Rogers’ right hip. Mr. MacDonald was unavailable for teaching later that afternoon; indeed he did not reappear for forty-eight hours. When he did, I was too cowardly to remind him that he had specifi­cally told me that “if you go in hard, you never get hurt.” So when I see international rugby teams lumbering out at Twickenham, I look at them with awe, but also with a sense of being genetically discon­nected from them. I was not born to be butch, and I have accepted my innate unmanliness without complaint. Besides, it seems to me that cowards very seldom cause trouble, which is probably why there is a history of them being shot by people who do.[1]

None of this, incidentally, is to say that my infant wussiness was in any way admirable. But while I was undeniably a gutless little weed there was an upside: at least I didn’t display the habitual mind­less aggression of some young males. Better a wuss than a psycho, I say, and I am proud that I have never been able to force myself to watch cage fighting.
If part of my weedy outlook on life came from my father’s pam­pering, a fair proportion was down to my complicated relationship with my mother. And in this context another early memory comes to mind. I am lying in bed, falling asleep, when a noise causes me to turn and see shadows moving on the half-open door of my bedroom. They are shadows of my parents fighting. Dad has been coming into my room and Mum has started attacking him, pummelling him with a flurry of blows which he is trying to fend off. There is no sound—I sense they are both trying not to wake me—and the memory has no emotion attached, although it is very clear. Just the shadows which last a few seconds and then . . . silence. As I write this, my throat tightens a little. The level of violence I’m describing is low: there are no shillelaghs or chainsaws here, just lower-middle-class fisticuffs, with no prospect of Grievous Bodily Harm, as English law calls it. Nevertheless, my beloved dad, a kind and decent person, is being at­tacked by this unknowable creature who is widely rumoured to be my mother.

Young children have so little life experience that they inevitably assume that what happens around and to them is the norm. I re­member that when my daughter Cynthia was very young she was surprised to discover that some of her friends’ fathers did not work in television. So it would have been hard for me to describe my rela­tionship with my mother as problematic because I had no idea what the word “motherly” conveyed to most people. Dad once described to me how, during the First World War, he had witnessed a wounded soldier lying in a trench and crying out for his mother. “Why on earth would he cry for her?” I wondered. When, over the years, I began to hear friends tell me that their mother was their best friend, someone with whom they routinely discussed their daily life, and to whom they looked for emotional support, I simply thought, “How wonderful that must be…”
Please do not think that I am loftily labeling her a “bad mother.” In many ways she was a good mother; sometimes a very good mother. In all day-to-day matters she was extremely diligent: preparing good meals, making sure I was properly clothed and shod and warm and dry, keeping the house neat and clean, and fiercely protective of me. Under light hypnosis, I once recalled a German air raid, with the sound of the bombers not far away, and Mother throwing herself on top of me, under a big kitchen table. If it was a false memory, it’s still what she would have done.

From a practical point of view, then, she was impeccable. But she was also self-obsessed and anxious, and that could make life with her very uncomfortable indeed.
A clue to her self-obsession, I always felt, was her extraordinary lack of general knowledge. On one of her visits to London in the late ’80s, a salad was prepared for lunch which contained quails’ eggs. She asked what kind of eggs they were and I explained that they were moles’ eggs, and that when we wanted them, we would go up to Hampstead Heath very early in the morning, as moles laid them at the entrance to their burrows during the night, collect the eggs and make sure we ate them the same day before they had time to hatch. She listened with great attention, as my family’s jaws sagged, and said she thought them “delicious.” Later that day she caught a men­tion of Mary, Queen of Scots. She recognised the name and asked me who this was. With my family listening, I pushed the envelope a little, telling her that Mary was a champion Glaswegian darts player who had been killed in the Blitz. “What a shame,” she said.

I was being a bit naughty, of course, but I also wanted to prove to my family the truth of a comment I had made earlier about Mother, which they had not accepted on first hearing. I had told them that she had no information about anything that was not going to affect her life directly in the immediate future; and that consequently she possessed no general knowledge—and when I said no general knowledge, I didn’t mean very, very little. Naturally they had thought I was exaggerating.

And the reason for this was not that she was unintelligent, but that she lived her life in such a constant state of high anxiety, border­ing on incipient panic, that she could focus only on the things that might directly affect her. So it goes without saying that she suffered from all the usual phobias, along with a few special ones (like albinos and people wearing eye patches). But she also cast her net wider. In fact, I used to joke that she suffered from omniphobia—you name it, she had a morbid dread of it. It’s true that I never saw her alarmed by a loaf of bread or a cardigan or even a chair, but anything above me­dium size that could move around a bit was a hazard, and any reason­ably loud sound startled her beyond reason. I once compiled a list of events that frightened her, and it was quite comprehensive: very loud snoring; low-flying aircraft; church bells; fire engines; trains; buses and lorries; thunder; shouting; large cars; most medium-sized cars; noisy small cars; burglar alarms; fireworks, especially crackers; loud radios; barking dogs; whinnying horses; nearby silent horses; cows in general; megaphones; sheep; corks coming out of sparkling wine bottles; motorcycles, even very small ones; balloons being popped; vacuum cleaners (not being used by her); things being dropped; din­ner gongs; parrot houses; whoopee cushions; chiming doorbells; hammering; bombs; hooters; old-fashioned alarm clocks; pneumatic drills; and hairdryers (even those used by her).
In a nutshell, Mother experienced the cosmos as a vast, limitless booby trap.
Consequently, it was never possible for her really to relax, except perhaps for the times when she sat on the sofa knitting while Dad and I watched television. But even then she was active, knitting away against time. I noticed years ago that when people (myself definitely included) are anxious they tend to busy themselves with irrelevant activities, because these distract from and therefore reduce their ac­tual experience of anxiety. To stay perfectly still is to feel the fear at its maximum intensity, so instead you scuttle around doing things as though you are, in some mysterious way, short of time. But although Mother kept herself busy in countless and pointless ways, it did not alleviate her worrying: her pervading sense that she was keeping nameless disasters at bay only by incessantly anticipating them, and that one moment’s lapse in this vigilance would bring them hurtling towards her. I once proposed to Dad that we should purchase a large hamster wheel for her, so that she would find it easy to remain active all day, instead of having continually to invent non-essential activi­ties like polishing cans of peas, or stacking cups, or sewing borders on handkerchiefs, or boiling knitting needles, or weeding the carpet.

Her own approach was to write her worries down on a piece of paper, so that there was no chance she would forget one, thus un­leashing it. After Dad died, I would drive down to Weston to visit her and she would greet me with a cup of coffee and a very long list of worries which she had been compiling during the previous weeks, and we would sit down and discuss each worry in turn at some length: what it was about, and why it mattered, and how likely it was to happen, and what she could do to forestall it, and what we could do if it did actually happen, and whether we would know what to do if it didn’t . . . and after we’d processed six or so, she’d make me another cup of coffee and we would continue working till bedtime. And if we hadn’t got through them all by then, we’d leave the rest for  breakfast. It took me decades to realise that it was not the analysing of her worries that eased them; it was the continuous contact with another person that gradually calmed her.

Why Mother should have been quite so anxious I simply don’t know, but the net effect was to make her difficult. Actually, “dif­ficult” is not quite fair. There was only one thing that she wanted. Just one. But that one thing was her own way. And if she didn’t get it, that upset her. And she was prettily easily upset; in fact I think it’s fair to say she had a real facility for it; and when something did upset her—and there was a very limited supply of things that, in the final analysis, didn’t—she would throw a tantrum, or several tantra, of such inconceivable volume and activity that there must have been times when Dad yearned for the relative tranquillity of the trenches in France.

But Mother would never have seen herself as a tyrant: her trick was to rule through weakness. Whereas Dad might prefer to sleep with a window open, Mother had to have it shut, because she just couldn’t cope with the alternative. Sadly, there was no choice, so nego­tiation was never an option, although Dad once confided to me that she had been much more flexible before they’d got married.

It was only in later years that I began to see just how alarmed Dad really was by the tantrums. While he talked occasionally about the need “to keep the little woman on an even keel,” his faux-amused casualness was intended to conceal his fear, for when Mother lost her temper, she really lost it: her rage filled her skin until there was no room left for the rest of her personality, which had to move over till things calmed down a bit. The phrase “beside oneself with anger” could have been coined in Weston-super-Mare.
Mother could be quite charming and bright and amusing, but that was when we had visitors. Once they had gone, her sociability began to fade. This meant that there was nearly always tension in the Cleese household because when mother was not actually angry it was only because she was not angry yet. Dad and I knew that the slightest thing—almost anything—would set her off, so constant pla­catory behaviour was the name of the game.

It cannot be coincidence that I spent such a large part of my life in some form of therapy, and that the vast majority of the problems I was dealing with involved relationships with women. And my in­grained habit of walking on eggshells when coping with my mother dominated my romantic liaisons for many years. Until it began to fade, women found me very dull. My own unique cocktail of over-politeness, unending solicitude and the fear of stirring controversy rendered me utterly unsexy. Very, very nice men are no fun. I once wrote a sketch based on my younger self (for the 1968 show How to Irritate People), in which I tried to show just how infuriating this de­sire to be inoffensive can be:
JOHN CLEESE: I’m afraid I’m not very good company tonight.
CONNIE BOOTH: No, it’s me. I’m on edge.

JC: No, no, no, you are marvellous, really super! It’s me.

CB: Look, let’s forget it.

JC: I’m not good company.

CB: You are.

JC: I’m not. I’ve been fussing you.

CB: It’s all right.

JC: I have been fussing you. It’s my own fault, you told me last time about fussing you too much.

CB: Please!

JC: Look, am I fussing you too much?

CB: A bit.

Although there was little real emotional communication be­tween us, my mother and I had our moments of closeness, almost all of them when we laughed together. She had quite a sharp sense of humour—and as I got older I discovered to my surprise that she also laughed at jokes that were rather dark, if not quite black. I remember on one occasion listening to her as she methodically itemised all the reasons why she didn’t want to go on living, while I experienced my usual sense of glum failure at my powerlessness to help. Then I heard myself say, “Mother, I have an idea.”

“Oh? What’s that?”

“I know a little man who lives in Fulham, and if you’re still feeling this way next week, I could have a word with him if you like— but only if you like— and he can come down to Weston and kill you.”

“Oh God, I’ve gone too far,” I thought.  And then she cackled with laughter. I don’t think I ever loved her as much as I did at that moment.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Coda just comes into my lap anyway -- what Kindle?

When I Was Your Age

Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving, everyone. I may not be posting tomorrow. Cooking, eating, watching Dallas win, reading, napping .... SOOO busy. :)

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

A dog and his dolphin

The Weekend Has Arrived Like a Dog Riding a Dolphin!

Because of last night's stupidity in Ferguson (and probably for the next couple days) of the aftermath of the decision, I'm listening to beautiful music and looking at happy things.

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. isn't on tonight so maybe I'll read instead of watching stupidity on the news like I did last night.  Here's to remember Agent Coulson:

Yes, we're sad, too. And next week is the quote unquote mid-season finale.

A winter weather advisory starts at 6pm tonight. Blah.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Monday, November 24, 2014

Where did those bubbles come from?

I'm currently reading FIELD OF DISHONOR by David Weber. This is 4th of 14 in the Honor Harrington space opera series. Here's a description:
The People's Republic of Haven's sneak attack on the Kingdom of Manticore has failed. The Peeps are in disarray, their leaders fighting for power in bloody revolution, and the Royal Manticoran Navy stands victorious. But Manticore has domestic problems of its own, and success can be more treacherous than defeat for Honor Harrington. Now, trapped at the core of a political crisis she never sought, betrayed by an old and vicious enemy she'd thought vanquished forever, she stands alone. She must fight for justice on a battlefield she never trained for in a private war that offers just two choices: death . . . or a ''victory'' that can end only in dishonor and the loss of all she loves.

Published in 1994, it has 384 pages. 

Because our cable company went all digital last week and the TV in the bedroom wasn't, we got a new TV this weekend. I don't think Steve will leave the bedroom on weekends. It is pretty.

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Friday, November 21, 2014

SOMEbody loves the snow

I'm currently reading BLOOD MAGICK by Nora Roberts. This is 3rd of the The Cousins O'Dwyer Trilogy set in Ireland. Here's a description:
County Mayo is rich in the traditions of Ireland, legends that Branna O’Dwyer fully embraces in her life and in her work as the proprietor of The Dark Witch shop, which carries soaps, lotions, and candles for tourists, made with Branna’s special touch. Branna’s strength and selflessness hold together a close circle of friends and family—along with their horses and hawks and her beloved hound. But there’s a single missing link in the chain of her life: love…She had it once—for a moment—with Finbar Burke, but a shared future is forbidden by history and blood. Which is why Fin has spent his life traveling the world to fill the abyss left in him by Branna, focusing on work rather than passion. Branna and Fin’s relationship offers them both comfort and torment. And though they succumb to the heat between them, there can be no promises for tomorrow. A storm of shadows threatens everything that their circle holds dear. It will be Fin’s power, loyalty, and heart that will make all the difference in an age-old battle between the bonds that hold their friends together and the evil that has haunted their families for centuries.
Published in 2014, it has 336 pages. I enjoy Roberts' writing, but this wasn't one of her strongest trilogies.

Planning on visiting B&N tomorrow with Mom. We'll do a little browsing and probably have lunch. Haven't done that for a while.

I made "impossible" coconut pie last night but I must have found a different recipe than my Mom's. This was more custard-y than what I remember her doing. Maybe I'm remembering incorrectly.

Have a great weekend!

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Houston, we have a canine gravity problem ....

(Somehow, photographer Julia Christe got all these photos of puppehs bouncing up in the air.)

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster