I was really looking forward to reading this book, because it sounded like a sweet little piece of literature to read in-between the more heavy works...moreI was really looking forward to reading this book, because it sounded like a sweet little piece of literature to read in-between the more heavy works I had scheduled for this season. In the end it turned out to fulfil my expectations, but I did have a few problems getting into the book. I first tried to read it but soon realized that this is one of the books where I’m better off listening to the audiobook (another reason why I love public domain book: most are available as free audiobook on LibriVox, so no need to actually buy two editions of the same book). Once I changed formats on the book I began to enjoy it. Dick Dewey’s story of falling in love with Fancy Day and how their relationship developed is really sweet to listen to. The LibriVox audiobook is narrated by Rachel Lintern. I wasn’t too impressed by her narration in the beginning and have certainly listened to better voices on LibriVox, but she doesn’t do a bad job, either. (less)
In this book Helen Keller tells her experiences growing up as a child who was both blind and death. This made is very hard for her to communicate with...moreIn this book Helen Keller tells her experiences growing up as a child who was both blind and death. This made is very hard for her to communicate with her environment and for her environment with her. How do you teach a person who can’t see or hear anything a language? How do you teach her to read or write? How this can be done is told in Helen Keller’s story. She doesn’t only learn to communicate, read and write but also learns very hard and even manages to attend college. This is a very moving story that I can wholeheartedly recommend to everybody.
I listened to the Librivox audiobook and found it an average piece in their repertoire. The narrator wasn’t exceptional, but she wasn’t too bad either.(less)
And Then You Dye is the latest installment in a series of cozy mysteries featuring Betsy Devonshire. Betsy runs a needlework shop in Excelsior, Minnes...moreAnd Then You Dye is the latest installment in a series of cozy mysteries featuring Betsy Devonshire. Betsy runs a needlework shop in Excelsior, Minnesota. However, the work in her shop often gets interrupted by Betsy's sleuthing habits. This time she is asked to find the murderer of Hailey Brent. Hailey spun and dyed wool which Betsy sold in her shop ... until Hailey is found shot in her house.
This is the first book by Monica Ferris that I read. It took me some time to get into the story and the narrator. While the story itself does not depend on knowing the first books in the series, I would probably have had an easier time in getting into the story had I known the first parts. I'm certain that most of the characters appearing here were introduced earlier in the series, which would have given them more depth and background. Considering this I was surprised at how fast I was drawn into the story. I might have needed two or three chapters, but after that I was really beginning to enjoy this cozy mystery. Betsy has a nice way of dealing with the case. She might ask around to get information, but she doesn't pry or overstep the border between legal and illegal actions. In spite of her sleuthing she recognizes the police as being the responsible body for apprehending the murderer. She rather sees herself as a person helping the police in gathering evidence and information that the police might not be able to get in their official capacity. This makes her a very amiable sleuth.
The mystery itself was well-written, with appropriate hints dropped in the right places. While I actually guessed right as to who might be the murderer, I wasn't quite certain until the person was revealed. It has been a while since I read a mystery where I found the hints so well-placed in the story. Not too obvious but still there. Some small side-stories (like Godwin and his friend Rafael and their excursion into the world of coin collecting) provided a nice background to the story to give it life. Even though these parts did not actually belong to the mystery, I didn't find them superfluous and enjoyed them just as much as the rest of the book.
Susan Boyce does a decent job on her narration. For the first few chapters I needed some time to get accustomed to her voice. One reason for this might be that before And Then You Dye I listened to an audiobook narrated by a male narrator and for some reason I always find it easier to listen to a male voice than a female one. However, Susan Boyce's voice soon felt comfortable to my ears and her narrating a book won't keep me from listening to it in the future.
All in all this is a nice cozy mystery and I'll probably get the first fifteen books in the series as well (not all at once, but whenever I feel the need for some cozy entertainment), starting with the first. (less)