Monday, October 31, 2011

Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

As he lies on the ground and feels his life drain out of him, he remembers his father's words.  He had told him that going to the city and living on the streets would kill him...

I got my copy of this ebook from Net Galley and Random House Publishing (thank you).  The book was published in July, so you can get a copy now at your local bookstore.

This mystery is set in West Africa in Ghana.  As children grow into their early teens, they come to the city of Accra and live in the slums.  They work hard to make money, doing whatever they must to feed themselves.  They have hopes of making enough to send some money home, but that's almost a false hope.  Especially when a serial killer starts murdering them...

Darko Dawson is the detective assigned to the case.  He has enough personal problems, I found it surprising he could do his job.  He's fighting an addiction to marijuana, has a young son with a hole in his heart, and his police partner wants his job.  But he cares about these homeless kids, and really tries hard to solve the case.

This has the flavor of Ghana.  The homeless children talk at least five different languages, depending on what part of the country they came from.  There are bullies taking what they need from others.  There are packs of children working together for safety.  And in the midst of all this sorrow, there is hope.

The story is complex, holds together well, and I never imagined who the killer turned out to be.  I really enjoyed reading this book and will be watching for the next one Mr. Quartey writes.  I like his style of writing.

Happy reading.

The Journey of the Noble Gnarble by Daniel Errico

Open your imagination and take a magical tour of the sea with the small gnarble...

Emerald Book Company sent me an ARC of this book, and it's the most precious thing.  The book was published this month, so check with your local bookstore for a copy.

Tiffany Turrill has had great fun creating monsters of the deep and the minis of the deep in vibrant colors and with big teeth.  Your child won't want to miss any of this fishy characters because they are all named magical weird names, and they are silly looking.

The tale itself is simple.  The gnarble left his cozy bed on the ocean floor and sets out seeking a glimpse of the sky.  The way is full of danger, he needs others to help him journey so high, and several fish along the way would like to have him as a little appetizer...

The story is fun, the illustrations are bright and colorful and the names of the fish are tongue twisters.  What more could you want for a great read aloud book?  This would also make a great bedtime story.  Why not check it out and get yourself a copy?

Here's a link where you can meet the gnarble:  Meet Gnarble

I will be giving away my ARC, so if you would like to enter the contest, leave a comment here on my blog and send an email to me at info at with your name and address.  I'll pick a winner in about a week. 

Happy reading.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Hollow House by Janis Patterson

All she wants to do is to leave the past behind her and escape her husband's parent's hatred.  It's hard to do when you have no money and no skills, but she'll do her best to make it happen...

Carina Press and Net Galley shared this ebook with me for review (thank you).  It will be published November 14th, so add to your TBR list.

The year is 1919, and the story is set in Denver.  The lady of the house is disabled and needs a companion.  "Geraldine" decides to take a chance and apply for the position.  She has no references, but she was a lady in the past and has good bearing and manners.  

Ms. Stubbs hires her on a whim, which turns out to be a quirk of fate.  She wants someone who won't back down from her and can give as good as she takes sarcasm and criticism.  However she mustn't go over line between employee and employer.

Geraldine (who has hidden her identity) soon finds that there are problems within the household.  Someone attempts to kill Ms. Stubbs and only her previous training helps her save the woman.  

When a maid gets murdered, she realizes she will have to solve the case before she becomes a suspect.  

The author gives us plenty of people after Geraldine and Ms. Stubbs, the suspects are all capable of murder, and the action is full of drama and danger.

This story has the flavor of an old Victorian tale.  I really enjoyed it.   If you enjoy old-fashioned mysteries, this tale is for you.

Happy reading.

The Adventures of Titch and Mitch by Garth Edwards

This is a collection of wonderful bedtime stories for small ones.  Each chapter is a story and the outlandish adventures are great fun!

Inside Pocket Publishing and Net Galley allowed me a copy of this ebook for review (thank you).  It was published the first of this month, so you can get a copy now.

If you've read "Five Children and It" by Edith Nesbit, you have an idea of what kind of flavor this UK author uses in his books.  The subtitle of this book is :  The King of the Castle.  There are several stories and they are all great fantasy.  

Mitch and Titch keep getting in trouble, very innocently, and then they have to figure out how to escape.  They are small, but one story has one of them made even smaller by magical shrinking!  They even have a flying bicycle.

Your child will be anxiously awaiting their bedtime story when you read this book.  Why not share some old-fashioned humor and fantasy with your little one?  I enjoyed reading it!

Here is a link to the website showcasing Mr. Edwards books.  It's even a bit magical...  Titch & Mitch

Happy reading.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

A Clockwork Fairytale by Helen Scott Taylor

She's a thief and he's a spy, but they are both more than that.  When Turk takes Mel under his wing, he doesn't know she's female.  She doesn't intend to enlighten him either...

The author shared a copy of this book with me for review (thank you).  I'm so very glad I read it; I love this book!  You can buy an ebook of it on Amazon or Smashwords.  It's available now.

This is a touch of "Pygmalion" in this book.  

Melba has been raised as a boy, taught to thieve with the best of them, and doesn't want to admit she's a girl.  When Turk demands Mel bathe and get into some clean clothes, she fights hard to bathe alone.  When she and the housekeeper get into a fight, Turk comes in to break it up and finds she's a female.  More importantly, he finds she has six toes on each foot.  That means she's the missing princess...

When he visits the head monk and shares this info with him, he's instructed to "train" the girl as a princess would act and then turn her over to her father.  Not an easy task...

Ms. Taylor makes her characters brave, charming, and interesting.  I loved the terms Mel used when she first came in off the street.  As they work together to improve her skills, she gradually falls in love with Turk, and he with her.

He's a monk, she's a Princess, and royalty doesn't marry commoners.  But I found myself hoping it would work out.

The story is fast-paced and a very good read.  I'm sure there will be a sequel because this story isn't done yet.  I'll be waiting for it to come out.

This is one of the best fairy tales I've read this year.  Why not grab yourself a copy and see what you think?

Happy reading.

Waiting for the Biblioburro by Monica Brown

This is based on a true story.  Real-life librarian Luis Soriano Bohoquez travels around Columbia bringing the library to those who don't have books to read.

Tricycle Press sent me a copy of this book for review (thank you).  I had read about the librarian doing this, so I was glad to get a copy of this picture book and have a chance to see how they presented the story.  The book is available at your local bookstore now.

Ana has one book.  Her teacher gave it to her before she left and Ana has it memorized.  She makes up stories for her little brother as bed-time stories.  Fanciful tales that are light and airy are her favorites.

Then the Biblioburro comes to her village.  Imagine, two burros carrying books and new books to read!  Ana is ecstatic!

We went to the library once a week, on Monday evening after CCD classes.  I checked out seven books (the limit) each time.  I had them read by mid-day Wednesday.  And then I had to wait until the following Monday.  I know just how Ana felt.

Be sure to share the magic of books with your young ones.  Reading is a vital skill in life and books can take you to other worlds and on adventures.  No matter what your area of interest, there's a book for you.

At least we don't have to use a burro get a library book!

Happy reading.

Friday, October 28, 2011

All Hallow's Eve by Cristyn West

Someone is torturing people to death in the same way the saints died.  And the whole reason they are dying is because they have the saint's names.  Who could be that evil?

I am participating in the BFAD (Bestseller for a Day) blog tour and was given this book to review (thank you).  You can grab a copy of it on Amazon for your ereader now.

This is really a creepy book.  The deaths are horrible, there are no suspects, and it's race to All Hallow's Eve, when even more people will be slaughtered.

The tension is hot and heavy, you have odd characters at play, and most the families involved are dysfunctional.  Ms. West did a real good of hiding the killer's identity.  She also gets you emotionally involved with the characters.  It's harder to read about them in trouble when you care about them.

You don't easily forget this read after you're done with the book.  And it's an excellent read for Halloween, as long as you are not alone...

Here are some other specials you can grab today:  

Bestseller for a Day: 99 Cent Bonus Buys!

To celebrate All Hallow’s Eve’s big day, these authors are dropping the price of their amazing titles to just 99¢!!!!
On October 28th, head over to their pages and see what all the fuss is about!

Widowmaker by Cristyn West and Elena Gray

A horror movie that causes people to die? 

Something so scary that people watching it are bleeding out of their eyes, having heart attacks and ripping their own faces apart? The docu-horror film called Terror in the Trees sounds harmless enough, doesn't it? 

That's what FBI Agent Derek Bolder thought when he was given the mission to go to Hollywood to bring back the film. He hadn't yet understood the sheer evilness contained within it...but he soon would. 

Derek's ex-fiancée Jill, the beautiful and sexy film executive, is dead set against giving him the film. It would ruin her career. What lengths would she and her nasty boss go to, to protect their reputations even as the bodies pile up?

The Evil Within, a Horror Anthology by Cristyn West, Amber Scott, et. al.

The hiss of hot breath coming from inside the coat closet.

The noxious odor of plastic smothering your face as you fight to breathe.

The nagging feeling that someone is watching your every move...waiting.

Vengeance. Misplaced trust. Pure evil.

After reading these nine chilling tales this Halloween, how many times will you soothe yourself in the dark thinking "there are no monsters"?

Fierce Dawn: A ParaRealm Novel by Amber Scott

Snarling teeth, glowing eyes. Someone--something--is after her. 

The man who haunts her dreams enters her reality, claiming she's transforming into a changeling--not quite immortal but no longer human. Except nobody wants this change. Not humans, not immortals and least of all her.

Battle lines are drawn and blood spills as the two fight not only for her life, but for mankind's as well.

Halloween Jack and the Devil’s Gate by M. Todd Gallowglas

When the Devil's Gate comes down, releasing all the hordes and legions of the darkest realm to roam the earth any night they wish, and jack o’ lanterns no longer keep the dark creatures at bay, only the last three descendants of the mythical Jack of the Lantern can save the world from the Devil and all his kin.

Based on one of the oldest Irish legends of Halloween, HALLOWEEN JACK AND THE DEVIL'S GATE is a Steam Punk adventure story for all ages that will carry you to the heart of how we protect ourselves on the darkest night of the year.

 Happy reading!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

How to Draw Chiller Monsters, Werewolves, Vampires and Zombies by J. David Spurlock

Here's a great choice for a Halloween gift!  This book includes the artwork of Neal Adams, Kerry Gammill, Basil Gogos, David Hartman, Alex Horley, John Romitas Sr, Jim Steranko, and Wally Wood.  The foreword is by Rom Zombie.  How could you go wrong?

Watson-Guptill sent me a copy of this book for review (thank you).  It was published in September, so you can get a copy at your local bookstore now.  If you have an aspiring illustrator in your midst, this is just the gift for them.

There are anecdotes and drawings from horror films; let them make their own nightmares come true!  Zombies, vampires, and other creatures of the night are broken down to the essentials of anatomical drawing and then they are shown how to distort it to make the monster.

This is not art for a child, but I bet a young adult would just love to draw their own Zombies.  Why not indulge their artistic abilities and see just how wild their imagination is?  You might have the next horror movie mogul living in your household, who knows?

Happy reading.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Dangerous Magic by Alix Rickloff

She's a witch; he's a pirate.  She's also a healer and that's how she meets Rafe...

Carina Press is publishing this book on Halloween, which somehow seems appropriate.  I got my copy from them and Net Galley for review (thank you).  If you like historical romance with a touch of magic, this book is for you.

Gwenyth has nightmares (or visions of the future) where she sees her loved one die from drowning in a ship accident.  So she has made up her mind not to marry and not to care that much about a man.  However, she has to have a baby to get the girl she needs to carry on her line of healing.  Almost none of her family line has married.  It has not been necessary to have a child.  But she never planned to meet Rafe, either.

Rafe has been a pirate but has money enough to leave that behind him and go back home, as the lord of his own mansion.  He wants a lady on his arm as his wife, but he was betrayed by the one he thought he loved earlier in life.  So he wants Gwenyth to come back home with him and act as his betrothed so she can see them as they truly are and help him find one that would be a good companion for him.  What could go wrong with that?  Lots...

His family doesn't want him, his mother hates his common betrothed, and his old girlfriend is now a widow looking for another man with money.  Gwenyth is uncomfortable because of the conflicts with family and also because she's beginning to care about Rafe too much.  If he falls in love with her, he sentences himself to death...

The author writes a tight, fast paced book with strong characters and offers both of them challenges to face.  I enjoyed this read.  There is a bit of spicy romance included, but it fit the story.  Why not give it a read yourself?

Happy reading.

Lucy Rescued by Harriet Ziefert

This story spoke to me because it's a tale of a dog being rescued from the pound.  All of the animals I've owned (except for my purebred Bengal) have been rescued cats or dogs.  They have all been special to me.  And my best dog ever was a Tennessee Walker Coonhound who was my protector and loved me unconditionally.  I'll never forget Sammy.  So I had to read this book...

Blue Apple Books will be publishing in at the end of March next year.  Make yourself a note so you can remember the title.  Ziefert has written several books and they are all good.  You could share some other stories while you wait for this one.  You can also follow Blue Apple Books on Facebook: Blue Apple Books page and see what other books they offer.  They all look cute to me.  They have several educational books for young ones, too.

Lucy looks a bit like a terrier and she's waiting patiently for someone to give her a forever home.  Her new family thinks she's just perfect for their family of three.  But once they get Lucy home, she begins to howl.  Mom and Dad try everything, but nothing makes her happy.  When Mom suggest they may have to return her to the pound, the little girl tries to help.
My favorite part of the story is when she shares a stuffed toy with her and it helps ease her loneliness.

This is very nice story with a cute ending and I'm sure your young one will want to read it again and again.  

Happy reading.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Interview with Kirby Larson

I hear you were a girl who read too much when young.  I still read a book a day.  Are you a big reader now, too?

Yes! My reading is more eclectic than when I was a kid, however. I read a great deal more nonfiction, because of my new-found passion for writing historical fiction. Right now, I have a stack of WWII POW memoirs on my nightstand. But I’m also a huge reader of fiction – two new favorites are Linda Urban’s Hound Dog True and Tom Angleberger’s Origami Yoda books. And I got to read Barbara O’Connor’s newest book, The Road to Mr. Mineo’s, in manuscript form. It comes out in January and is well worth the wait!

What inspired you to write about the Friendship Dolls?  Was it hard to locate information about them or was it readily available?

While researching Hattie Big Sky, I came across a black and white photo, dated 1928, in the basement of the Montana Historical Society Museum, showing a little farm girl standing next to an absolutely exquisite Japanese doll. I couldn’t imagine how those two got together in that place and long-ago time and, every now and then, I would set aside HBS to learn what I could about the doll. I wouldn’t say information was easy to come by – I spent many hours in newspaper archives and tracking down old issues of Everyland Magazine for Boys and Girls. But I got a lot of great “starter” information from William Gordon’s website,, and I was also fortunate enough to find a copy of the book written by the man behind the Friendship Doll exchange, Dr. Sidney Gulick.

I have to confess that I am not a doll person – never really played with them when I was a girl. But when I got the chance to “meet” Miss Tokushima, Washington state’s Friendship Doll, I was enchanted. I knew she and her sisters had a story to tell and I was determined to tell it. This book went through a huge transformation, starting life first as a mystery that my editor soundly rejected and then finding its current form; all in all, I spent about five years on this book.

Why did you become a writer?

Being a voracious reader was certainly part of it, leading me to start writing my own stories and poems as a little girl. I never dreamed an ordinary person like me could become a writer, however, and it wasn’t until I was a young mom, reading to my children, that the dream of writing for kids seemed achievable.

I have remained a writer thanks in great part to the generous and supportive children’s literature community, which encompasses writing friends, as well as bloggers, booksellers, editors, librarians and teachers. . .and other readers!

How many years have you been writing?

I wrote a story about the Easter Bunny in third grade. That was a long time ago! My first book was published in 1994.

What are you working on now?

I am revising a sequel to Hattie Big Sky (which was due to my editor in August!), and am beginning research for another historical novel, set in WWII, for younger readers.

Thanks for such a nice interview, Kirby!   

If you missed reading my review for this book earlier, here's the link:  Friendship Doll

This was a very good read and will teach your child some history, too.  Why not get a copy at your local bookstore now?

Happy reading.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Unfinished Business by W Soliman

He's a retired cop still haunted by one of his first cases, a missing person case.  She's the missing person's sister...

Carina Press and Net Galley shared this book with me for review (thank you).  It's an ebook that is available for purchase now.

This is a strange little tale.  The author draws you into the story by telling you that the sister who is missing called home and convinced her family she was gone by choice.  While Charlie's cop instincts made him wonder about the truth of that, the case was ended because the parents were content with her statement.  There was a bit more to that story, but that doesn't come out until later.

The story is convoluted, full of all kinds of interconnected ties that don't show up right away.  The author baited me in just like a fish on a hook, and then he flipped my expectations on the story line over and hit me in the head with a rock.  At least, that's what it felt like.

This is a nasty mystery, but it could very well be true.  I found having the author give you the story through one of the character's eyes and then flipping the character at the end was a bit of betrayal to the reader.  But the technique worked, so it's probably not a bad thing.

One thing about it, the whole story is busy and everyone is being manipulated in one way or the other.  It was an interesting read.  Why not try it?

Happy reading.

How Dalia Put a Big Yellow Comforter Inside a Tiny Blue Box by Linda Heller

This is a charming picture book about the Jewish tradition of Tzedakah.

Tricycle Press sent me a copy of this book for review (thank you).  It is already in local bookstores, so you can grab a copy there.

This is a lovely Jewish tradition I was not familiar with.  In this story, children from class build a box and save what they earn to buy a yellow comforter and more for a person in need.

The illustrations have an old fashioned feel and go well with the story.  Dalia, the older sister is the one making the box and saving her money, but she includes her little brother, Yossi, in the project.

Showing compassion to another person is one of the nicest things you can do.  Sometimes all you have to do is listen.  Being kind makes the world a better place and this story demonstrates that.  

Why not create your own Tzedakah box?

Happy reading.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Hot Trick by Patricia Rosemoor

She's a cop, a very good one.  She doesn't believe in magic.  But her boyfriend is half-Vampire, so it's hard to pretend things like paranormal and magic don't exist.

Carina Press and Net Galley shared a copy of this ebook with me for review (thank you).  The book was published the 10th of this month, so it's available for purchase now.

This is a fast-paced story with lots of twists and turns in it.  Once I started reading it, I couldn't put it down.  Too much was happening and I had to see what would come next...

I enjoyed the mix of magic, the twists of family relationships, and the murder mystery at the base of the story.  The author does a good job of giving you a meaty story with surprises hidden here and there.

It all starts when a banshee tells Shelley that a person is going to drown in a trunk.  She knows a magician is going to try that trick, so she goes to the performance.  He lives, but a woman in a car trunk elsewhere doesn't.  

She suspects the magician may be the killer, but the deaths appear to be to people who were related to a court case Shelley had been involved in.  Why would he want to kill them?

The plot is interesting and much more complicated than it first appears.  I very much enjoyed this read and highly recommend it if you like fantasy.  Why not give this one a try?

Happy reading.

Jim Henson The Guy Who Played with Puppets by Kathleen Krull

Who hasn't heard of Sesame Street and the Muppets?  This is a picture book that will teach your young one about the man who created the puppets.

Random House Children's Books sent me a copy of this book for review (thank you).  The illustrations are paintings done by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher.  The book is now available at your local bookstore.

Whether you buy this book for your child or for yourself, it's a delightful look at a unique personality.  Ms. Krull introduces us to Mr. Henson, who was determined to help children learn with the use of puppets.  How successful he was at it amazed even himself.

The paintings evoke the era that Mr. Henson grew up in (it was the same one I did).  It was a simpler time with less TV, no cellphones and no apps.  Mr. Henson's puppets were popular with the kids and not only taught children their alphabet and how to count, but also taught them about bullies, being different, and being honest.

Follow Mr. Henson through his life and see how he finally got to live his dream and "play with his puppets".

Happy reading.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Brass and Bone by Cynthia Gael

Let's visit England during the Victorian era, shall we?

Carina Press and Net Galley allowed me to get a copy of this book for review (thank you).  It was published the tenth of October, so you can get a copy now at your local bookstore.

This is a steampunk novella.  I enjoy steampunk.  It's a mix of mechanical apparatuses and nature usually, and the alternate worlds the authors create fascinate me.

In this story, Ms. Gael focuses mainly on the mechanical side of steampunk.  Imagine opening a watch and having a mechanical spider attached to your arm and attempt to poison you...  Simon unfortunately let his curiosity get the best of him.

Lady Abigail thieves to keep her airship afloat.  Simon has known her since childhood and he loves her.  But he knows there is no chance for the love to be reciprocated.  He may be wrong.

The author then mixes the pot with another old friend of Abigail's who wants them to do an errand for him.  The errand has to do with a witch...

This story flows well, has very interesting characters, and is an enjoyable read.  Why not give it a try?

Happy reading.

Friday, October 21, 2011

The Iron Knight by Julie Kagawa

I have read this entire series and this book is the best yet!

Harlequin Teen and Net Galley shared an ebook with me for review (thank you).  This book will be published on October 25th (my anniversary).  You can put it on your list and pick it up next week at your local bookstore.

I must confess I love fairy stories.  That is part of why my business name is the The Book Faerie.  As with all books, some of them are good and some of them are bad.  Ms. Kagawa's series is excellent.  She includes the evil that comes from the fae world (they have no feelings, no emotions, so whatever they do doesn't bother them) and not everyone makes it out alive, but that just makes the stories more realistic to me.  It's fantasy, but it feels real.

Ash has lost everything.  His first love, his kingdom, his title, his home and, even worse, he can't stay with the woman he loves because of the iron.  He has sworn to overcome that obstacle or die.  You aren't sure which way it is going to go.

His journey is long and hard, his friends are his enemies too, and no one can make it easier for him.  Even he isn't sure if he's strong enough to withstand the tests.

This is fast paced, has familiar characters, and I was still sitting in my chair rooting for my favorites.  Ms. Kagawa's writing makes you care.

I highly recommend this whole series.  And this book is the best in the series.  If you love a good fantasy, get these.  It may be written for teens, but I sure enjoyed it.

Happy reading.

Mousenet by Prudence Breitrose

Imagine a computer so small you have to use toothpicks to hit the keys...

I got my copy of this ebook from Disney-Hyperion and Net Galley (thank you).  It is written for ages 8-12 and will be published on November 8th.  This is a fun fantasy story about mice and a little girl who is lonely.

Megan has been adventuring with her mother, who does animal research.  She's been home schooled.  She and her mom are visiting with her uncle but Megan is real disappointed when her mother takes off for Australia and she can't go, too.  She then gets shipped off to her father and his new wife and she's also going to have to go to school.  And late, too.  Everyone will stare...

The one good thing she has is a very mini computer that her Uncle has created.  It so tiny it will fit on her thumb, and she has to use toothpicks to hit the keys.  But it works!  They name it the Thumbtop and she takes it with her to her father's house.  She hides it in her room, but someone spies it through her window.  And someone else sneaks into her room at night and uses it.

Imagine her surprise when she finds a mouse in her room and it talks to her...

The mouse nation is interested in acquiring more computers in that compact size.  How Megan and Trey work together to try to accomplish that task is amusing and fun to read about.  

Why not let your child watch how the mouse nation can network and make things happen.  The story is way-out fantasy, and it's a fun read.

Happy reading.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Mystery at Blackbeard's Cove by Audrey Penn

Can you imagine being friends with one of the last surviving relatives of Blackbeard, the pirate?  She's a sweet old lady who tells all sorts of tall tales about the pirate and enjoys having the young ones around.  She even makes them Christmas gifts.  So who's to guess just how complicated she would make their lives upon her death?

Tanglewood and Net Galley shared an ebook of this with me for review (thank you).  This book will be published on Halloween and it's a great read for this time of the year.  Put it on your TBR list and get set for a fast ride through an exciting adventure!

Billy is the oldest and strongest.  Daniel is smart.  Stephanie is always talking and arguing.  Mark doesn't speak at all and wears coke bottle glasses.  This foursome is tasked with burying Mrs. Nemish at sea, so she can join the pirates.  Of course, the adults know nothing about this...

This is a busy romp from beginning to end.  The author mixes history, mystery, folk tales and more into the book brew.  She has also has created honest characterizations of young teens and their foibles.  The boys are rough and tough and determined.  Stephanie is so much a whiny girl, I'd have slugged her myself if she was around.  (I was a tomboy, you see.)  She does keep up with the boys, but not without letting them know how she feels about it.

There is supposed to be treasure, but they have had more luck finding skeletons than treasure.

I like how the author inserted a lot of historical facts about Blackbeard.  He was a very interesting character and he makes a great ghost in this story.  She also includes a lot of humor in her tale that makes it an even more enjoyable read.

The story reads fast, flows well, and I'm sure they will be another in this series because there is one more treasure to be found...

Better get reading this one first so you'll be ready for the second in the series!

Happy reading.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Dance of the Winnebagos by Ann Charles

Imagine hanging out with your Grandpa and his old cronies and listening to tales about their sex lives, past and present.  Doesn't that sound like fun?  Not!

How could I not read a book with a title like that?  When the author offered me a copy to read for review, I leaped on it!  And it made me laugh out loud...

Claire went along because her mother wanted her to watch over her grandfather on his trip to the TV park.  She was not excited about babysitting Grandpa, but it was a vacation of sorts.  

The excitement all began when Henry (mostly beagle) runs up to Claire with a bone he has found; she's pretty sure it's a femur...

This is a fast paced murder mystery with ribald humor, a dozen subplots and romances and a murder thrown in.  Claire gets in the middle of it when she wants to examine the mines for bones and she tangles with the mine owner's nephew (who is hot by the way).  They're not the only one searching the mines, and the other party doesn't want to share.

Ms. Charles has a talent for one line zingers and her novels are worth reading just to read the conversations.  This is a very good murder mystery with hidden money at the core.  I very much enjoyed reading this mystery.

Here is a bit of information about the author:  

Ann Charles is an award-winning author who writes romantic mysteries that are splashed with humor. Her first book, Nearly Departed in Deadwood, won the 2010 National Daphne du Maurier for Excellence
in Mystery/Suspense award AND the 2011 National Romance Writers of America Golden Heart award. A member of Sisters in Crime,the Guppies, and Romance Writers of America for many moons, she
has a B.A. in English with an emphasis on creative writing from the University of Washington. When she is not dabbling in fiction, arm-wrestling with her children, attempting to seduce her husband, or arguing with her sassy cat, she is standing on her workshop soapbox, blabbing about what she has learned over the years.
Visit her at or
You can also find her hanging out on Facebook (on her Author Page or Personal Page) or Twitter (as Deadwood Violet or AnnWCharles).

Happy reading.

Eeny Up Above! Jane Yolen, Kathryn Brown (Illustrated by)

Eeny is a mole.  Her sisters are very happy in their home but Eeny is more adventuress.  She goes up and samples all of the seasons of the y...