The Snow Globe by Judith Kinghorn is set in England in 1926-27. Daisy is the main character - she is 19 and the youngest of three sisters. One is marrThe Snow Globe by Judith Kinghorn is set in England in 1926-27. Daisy is the main character - she is 19 and the youngest of three sisters. One is married, and one is living in London and owns a dress shop there. Her mother and father have been married almost 25 years. Her father inherited his father's business and stays in London most of the time while her mother stays at Eden Hall, the family home in the country. Everybody thinks they have the perfect marriage - or at least Daisy does. Until she overhears the servants talking about 'that other woman' and mentioning a boy and starts putting together the clues. She realizes that her father has been having an affair with a woman in London - and that her mother knows about it! Her hero worship of her father is deflated with a big fat POP!
It is the Christmas season and her family usually has a houseful of guests for Christmas - friends, family - but this year Daisy's mother Mabel has decided to surprise her husband - and has invited his mistress, Margot and her son Valentine and seems interested in Daisy. Surprise it is and let's say a little awkward. Rounding out the guests is Reggie, a friend who lives close by and seems to be enamored with Mabel - not that she seems to mind any - and Ben - an employee of her father's who spent part of the summer there and is quite taken with Daisy. Then there is Stephen Jessop - he is the son of the cook and gardener and has been Daisy's lifelong companion. The best way to sum up the three young men in Daisy's life is by taking a quote off the back of the book - "As Daisy wrestles with the truth, she blossoms in her own right, receiving a marriage proposal from one man, a declaration of love from another, and her first kiss from a third."
So the story revolves around Daisy, and her search for true love - while also trying to understand her parents relationship and love. Is there really much difference between young love and old love? Or can misunderstandings cause trouble at both ends?
This was my first book by Judith Kinghorn, but I did enjoy reading it. It is not a big action packed page turner, but the story slowly unfolds and there were times I just wanted to wring everyone's necks and tell them to communicate with each other! If you are looking for a good old-fashioned romance, then this one is for you!
~I received a complimentary copy of The Snow Globe from Penguin in exchange for my unbiased review.~...more
Uncaged was a pretty fast paced book by John Sandford and Michele Cook. It is the first book in The Singular Menace series, with the second book expecUncaged was a pretty fast paced book by John Sandford and Michele Cook. It is the first book in The Singular Menace series, with the second book expected to be published in July of this year (Outrage).
Shay and Odin Remby are orphans who were living with foster parents in Washington (?). Odin is a terrific hacker, but he doesn't have a lot of common sense. He has a soft spot for animals and has become friends with a group of animal rights activists. There is a girl in the group that he believes is his girlfriend, but they all might be using him a bit for his mad skills.
They target a research lab, Singular, which turns out to be more than they can handle. Odin ends up with a dog that appears to have had some radical surgery, and some encrypted flash drives. He contacts Shay only to let her know that he has to go into hiding because of this raid-gone-wrong.
Before she can think about it, Shay takes off to make sure her brother is okay. She ends up in California living with a bunch of misfit kids in a hotel that is owned by mysterious artist named Twist. These kids are themselves a cast of characters - not really bad kids, but all for one reason or another, needing a place to call home. Shay slowly starts to trust them and needs their help more than ever when she ends up with the stolen dog and sees Odin get kidnapped. They band together to rescue Odin and try to figure out what Singular is really all about.
I am looking forward to the July release of the second book, Outrage....more
Stealing Home by Sherryl Woods is the first book in The Sweet Magnolia series. I saw Swan Point advertised sometime last year, and as it is the latestStealing Home by Sherryl Woods is the first book in The Sweet Magnolia series. I saw Swan Point advertised sometime last year, and as it is the latest in The Sweet Magnolia series, I wanted to go back and start at the beginning. (Swan Point is book 11, so I have a ways to go!)
The Sweet Magnolias are comprised of Maddie, Dana Sue and Helen, best friends since high school. Stealing Home is Maddie's story and it starts out with Maddie finding out about her doctor-husband's affair with his nurse. Well, she is pregnant (and 16 years younger) and he wants a divorce. I have a feeling that this happens more than we would like to admit in the medical field.
After wallowing in some much deserved self-pity, her friends set out to give her a new purpose by deciding to open a new spa/health club in town. They decide that Maddie needs to be the one to run it - to put her unused business degree to good use. Dana Sue already runs a very successful restaurant and Helen is a very successful lawyer.
As with all of Ms. Woods' books, there has to be some romance - and this comes in the shape of a much younger, easy-on-the-eyes ex-ballplayer (who just happens to be Maddie's son's baseball coach), Cal Maddox. Cal remembers the first time he saw Maddie, and never dreamed that her 20-year marriage would soon be over. Wanting to give her time to heal, but also needing to be there to lend a hand, he slowly develops a friendship with Maddie - both denying the attraction that is simmering under the surface.
I have read The Ocean Breeze Trilogy by Sherryl Woods and knew that I would enjoy this one. I was looking for a light-hearted romance that would be an easy read, and this one fit the bill. I look forward to continuing on in this series. The second book, A Slice of Heaven, is Dana Sue's story. ...more
Arcady's Goal by Eugene Yelchin takes place on the eve of WWII in Soviet Russia. Arcady, now twelve, has been raised in orphanages. His parents were tArcady's Goal by Eugene Yelchin takes place on the eve of WWII in Soviet Russia. Arcady, now twelve, has been raised in orphanages. His parents were taken away when he was a baby as they were accused of being "enemies of the state". Orphanages are the only home he has ever known. The other thing he knows well, though, is soccer. Where he has picked up his mad soccer skills, we will never know, but he dreams of being the next striker for the Red Army soccer team.
For now though, he plays one on one soccer with the other boys in the orphanage. He is so good, that they often parade him out when the inspectors come around - to entertain the inspectors and keep them from actually seeing how poorly the boys are treated. It is during one of these inspections that Ivan Ivanych sees Arcady play. Ivan is not really an inspector, but he is interested in adopting - and feels Arcady is the one. Arcady doesn't know anyone who was adopted and thinks Ivan is a soccer recruiter and starts calling him coach.
Both of these characters have been wounded and they strive to please each other - Arcady by always trying to impress "Coach" with his soccer skills, and Ivan, by actually creating a soccer team - even though he knows nothing about soccer. Things don't go as planned, though, and Arcady's dream of trying out for the Red Army soccer team seems further away than ever. Somehow these two start to become a family, and maybe that was Arcady's goal all along.
There are a lot of other nuances going on with this story as well - the charged atmosphere and the anticipation of war. The prejudice towards the families of the enemy of the people as well as the unjust way that people were accused of being enemies. ...more
Dragons of Autumn Twilight by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman is Volume 1 of the DragonLance Chronicles. This is an old series with this book first beDragons of Autumn Twilight by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman is Volume 1 of the DragonLance Chronicles. This is an old series with this book first being published back in 1984. I read a lot of the series back in the late 80's, but just felt like revisiting some of the first fantasy books that I ever read.
This book starts out with seven unlikely friends reuniting after some years apart. They are Tanis, (half-elf, half-human), Flint Fireforge (dwarf), Tasslehoff Burrfoot (Kender), Sturm Brightblade (Knight), Caramon and Raistlin Majere (Twins - Raistlin is a mage). Kitiara, Caramon and Raistlin's half-sister was also supposed to join them, but has only sent a strange note explaining her absence. They are joined on their first night back together by Goldmoon and Riverwind (plainsmen).
The world they live in is called Krynn and there are rumors of war and unrest all over. They soon discover that they are not even safe in what they feel is their "hometown" and are soon battling just to make it out of the pub in which they have met.
They set out together on a journey, not really knowing which way will lead them to safety. They end up in the Dark Woods where a magical Centaur tells them they are to go to the city of Xak Tsaroth to retrieve the Disks of Mishakal. These Disks will help to restore peace and bring back the true gods who abandoned Krynn years ago.
So as you can see, this is a true fantasy world, filled with myths and mythical creatures - from draconians and centaurs to dwarves and elves. It was fun to revisit it and learn again about this circle of friends and all of their strengths and weaknesses. It reminded me of a dog and a cat that I had in the 80's and 90's that were named after characters in this series - Tika was our dog - she is a barmaid who joins the travelers, and Fizban was our cat, and he is a wizard. I have decided to keep reading the series and am about half way through book 2 - The Dragons of Winter. ...more