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What Are You Reading? > REVIEWS - July 2017 Theme - Bagpipe Appreciation Day

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message 1: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (TessaBookConcierge) | 999 comments Mod
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Read any good books lately that fit our monthly theme? Here's the place to share your opinions / reactions / recommendations.

This month's theme was suggested by Olivermagnus -
Bagpipe Appreciation Day: Read a book set in Scotland or by a Scottish author.

Be sure to tell us how your book fits.

Happy reading!
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message 2: by Connie (new)

Connie D | 213 comments I've finished Blue Lightning by Ann Cleeves. 5 stars.

My review: Once again, Ann Cleeves weaves a tight mystery and a tighter coil around our hearts. Jimmy Perez is such an arresting character, a thoughtful detective who loves to listen to everyone's stories. In this 4th novel, Jimmy and his fiancee Fran go back to his home, Fair Isle, for an engagement celebration, but end out getting involved in a murder mystery at the birding center. For details of the story, read the blurb above. Just another excellent book by Cleeves: interesting characters, great setting, tense plot of deaths and discoveries, well written, and an emotional roller coaster.


message 3: by Olivermagnus (last edited Jul 18, 2017 07:10AM) (new)

 Olivermagnus   (Lynda214) | 159 comments The Winter Sea (Slains, #1) by Susanna Kearsley
The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley - 3.5 Stars

Main character, Carrie McClelland, is a bestselling author of historical fiction who decides to set her next book in Scotland during the time of the 1708 Jacobite Rebellion. It's a little known part of Scottish history that was an attempt by the Scots to negate the Union of 1707 between England and Scotland and bring the exiled Catholic King James VIII back from France to take the Scottish throne. The most well-known battle of the Jacobites was the Battle of Culloden in 1746 where they were finally defeated.

She rents a cottage in Cruden Bay, a small seaside town in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, near a ruined castle called Slains. She decides to use Sophia Paterson, one of her ancestors, as her main character. The story and the setting appeal to her in a vivid way, and her story seems to write itself. Slowly Carrie's research shows that her characters and circumstances, down to the smallest details, were actual events. She seems to have as ancestral memory, which made for interesting and compelling reading.

The supernatural thread was not overwhelming because the transitions back and forth from past to present were smooth and easy. There was plenty of historical information but not so much that I felt like it was a history book. I thought the women were great characters and the romance thread was not overdone, just more of an endearing love story from the past. I enjoyed it much more than I expected and if you like Scottish historical fiction or already a fan of Susanna Kearsley, you will probably like this one too.


message 4: by Olivermagnus (new)

 Olivermagnus   (Lynda214) | 159 comments Connie wrote: "I've finished Blue Lightning by Ann Cleeves. 5 stars.

My review: Once again, Ann Cleeves weaves a tight mystery and a tighter coil around our hearts. Jimmy Perez is such an arresting character, a ..."


This is one of my all-time favorite books and certainly one that stays with you, even years after reading it.


message 5: by Connie (new)

Connie D | 213 comments Olivermagnus wrote: "Connie wrote: "I've finished Blue Lightning by Ann Cleeves. 5 stars.

My review: Once again, Ann Cleeves weaves a tight mystery and a tighter coil around our hearts. Jimmy Perez is such an arrestin..."




Thank you for recommending this series to me!


message 6: by Jaret (new)

Jaret | 127 comments This wasn't exactly set in Scotland or written by a Scottish author, but Scottish ancestry plays an important role in the plot. And there were lots and lots of bagpipes. Let me know if you want me to delete this review.

Kilt Dead (A Liss MacCrimmon Mystery #1) by Kaitlyn Dunnett by Kaitlyn Dunnett
4 stars

from my library's catalog: Liss MacCrimmon is a 20-something dancer forced into early retirement by a knee injury. Adrift and depressed, Liss returns home to Moosetookalook, Maine, to help her aunt run a small store specializing in Scottish kitsch. Soon after she learns that the Scottish Emporium is in precarious financial shape, she discovers one of her former schoolteachers dead in the shop. Suspicions that Liss did the deed herself only grow when, much to Liss's shock, she turns out to be the woman's sole heir.

my thoughts: This was a cute cozy read. I liked most of the characters and their interplay with each other. I also liked that Liss was a character on the outside of the small town, in a way. She was returning "home" to the small town where events were taking place so she wasn't completely accepted. Some details were missing from the story that I would have liked to read about, but I really enjoyed the story and writing so I'll continue to check out the series.


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The Winter Sea (other topics)
Kilt Dead (other topics)

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Susanna Kearsley (other topics)