Dead Man’s Island by Carolyn Hart

Dead Man’s Island
(Henrie O #1)
by Carolyn Hart

DeadmansIsland

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FirstChapFirstPara

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

I don’t consider myself an angel, avenging or otherwise, but I can’t always accept fate as the answer. Timing makes all the difference.

There exists a rather charming school of thought that the motorist who looms out of the fog at precisely the right moment or the fatherly old man who takes a lost child’s hand and leads her to safety are heaven-sent messengers.

Unknown to themselves, of course.

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TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

The young woman he recalled was almost lost in the mists of memory, and those partaicular memories I had no intention of resurrecting. The reckless young reporter whom Chase had known so well was now a woman who had spent five decades covering fires, disasters, wars, revolutions, murders, and public scandals.

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I read a number of Carolyn Hart’s Death on Demand series years ago, but have only discovered the delightful Henrie O. It looks like there are seven in the series. Have you read any of Hart’s books?

Reading Challenges – 4th Quarter and 2015 Wrap-up

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RMFAO2015

RMFAO 2015 Classics Challenge

With the top level being Level 5: Professor – 12 or more books, this one was a piece of cake for me and was completed during the second quarter. Extras added this quarter:

30. The Rise of Silas Lapham by William Dean Howells
31. Mont Oriol or A romance of Auvergne by Guy de Maupassant
32. Notre Coeur or A Woman’s Pastime by Guy de Maupassant
33. Evan Harrington by George Meredith
34. The Distracted Preacher by Thomas Hardy
35. The Octopus: A Story of California by Frank Norris
36. Diary of a Pilgrimage by Jerome K. Jerome

RMFAO 2015 Genre Challenge

October – Horror (Level 4: Bibliophile – 4 books)
1. Dead Ever After (Sookie Stackhouse #13) by Charlaine Harris
2. A Touch of Dead (collection of the Sookie short stories) by Charlaine Harris
3. After Dead: What Came Next in the World of Sookie Stackhouse by Charlaine Harris
4. Those Who Hunt the Night (James Asher #1) by Barbara Hambly

November – Historical (Level 1: Casual Reader – 1 book)
1. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

December – Adventure/Fantasy (Level 2: Frequent Reader – 2 books)
1. The Martian by Andy Weir
2. Shackleton’s Forgotten Men by Leonard Bickel

A success with at least one book for each genre. February – Crime/Mystery, with eight books read was my biggest month, followed by May – Classics/Literary with seven books.

RMFAO 2015 Series Challenge

The same as Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015 below with the addition of:

AMELIA PEABODY series by Elizabeth Peters
18. Tomb of the Golden Bird

A miserable fail! Out of five series I had planned to finish, I only finished one (the Stephanie Plum series shown below).

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Yvonne2015

What An Animal Reading Challenge VIII 2015

Level 2 – Read 7-12

7. Dead Ever After (Sookie Stackhouse #13) by Charlaine Harris
8. The Elegance of the Hedgehog (L’elegance du herisson) by Muriel Barbery
9. Tomb of the Golden Bird (Amelia Peabody #18) by Elizabeth Peters
10. A Bone to Pick (Aurora Teagarden #2) by Charlaine Harris
11. The Octopus: A Story of California by Frank Norris

Completed. Luckily for me, the qualification rules are very broad.

Cruisin’ Thru the Cozies Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Sleuth Extraordinaire – Read 20 or more

17. Death of a Liar (Hamish Macbeth #31) by M. C. Beaton
18. Notorious Nineteen (Stephanie Plum #19) by Janet Evanovich
19. Takedown Twenty (Stephanie Plum #20) by Janet Evanovich
20. Top Secret Twenty-One (Stephanie Plum #21) by Janet Evanovich
21. Tomb of the Golden Bird (Amelia Peabody #18) by Elizabeth Peters
22. A Bone to Pick (Aurora Teagarden #2) by Charlaine Harris

Successfully completed and loads of fun doing it!

Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Expert series reader – Complete 4 or more series. A massive failure. It seemed so doable in January, yet I only managed to complete one series. There were seven unread books on the list (eight counting the extra series for the RMFAO Challenge). I blame my failure on getting hooked on Charlaine Harris’ Sookie Stackhouse series and reading nine of them in 2015. They weren’t on the list – but it was worth it as I really enjoyed the series.

Books read this quarter and the only series completed this year:

STEPHANIE PLUM series by Janet Evanovich
19. Notorious Nineteen
20. Takedown Twenty
21. Top Secret Twenty-One

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Riedel2015Mystery

My Kind Of Mystery 2015

February 1, 2015 – January 31, 2016

Level 5: Invisible Floor 41 or more:

33. Roadkill by Kinky Friedman
34. Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris
35. Death of a Liar by M. C. Beaton
36. Notorious Nineteen by Janet Evanovich
37. Those Who Hunt the Night by Barbara Hambly
38. Takedown Twenty by Janet Evanovich
39. Top Secret Twenty-One by Janet Evanovich
40. Tomb of the Golden Bird by Elizabeth Peters
41. A Bone to Pick by Charlaine Harris

Since this is not a calendar year Challenge, there is still one month to go. But it is already completed, so – success!

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GoodReads2015

My 2015 Goodreads Challenge was 100 books. Success! Completed on the last day of the year.

2016 Reading Challenges – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book

Two Reading Challenges which will be new for me in 2016 are hosted at Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book.

I am making it easy on myself and keeping track at Goodreads.

 

2016 Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge

alphabet2016

I’ve spotted this one on several blogs this year and it always looked like fun, so I’m in for 2016! Track my progress at Goodreads.

The Alphabet Soup Challenge means that by December 31, 2016, your bowls must be full of one book for each letter of the Alphabet. Each letter counts as one spoonful.

 

Craving For Cozies Challenge 2016

I’m already reading plenty of mysteries, including cozies, and participating in challenges for them, so why not one more! Here’s the special shelf at Goodreads.

I’ll be shooting for Satisfied: 21 – 40 Cozy Mysteries

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If either of these appeal to you, join me in giving them a try! Just click on the Challenge title for details and the sign up page at Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book.

2016 Reading Challenges – Classics and Genre

I’ll be participating in two Reading Challenges at the Goodreads group RMFAO in 2016.

 

RMFAO 2016 Classics Challenge

2016Classics2

I’m signing up for the top level of the Classics Catchup again this year:

Level 5: Professor – 12 or more books

This is a casual approach with a cut-off date of 1940 and everyone chooses their own books; there is no set list.

 

2016Genre2

It’s back and with a new and improved version including twenty-four genres!

In this favorite Challenge, a different genre is offered monthly. For 2016 there were be two genres from which to choose each month. Books may be chosen from either or, for the ambitious, both. Participants make their own choices and many books cross genres to make it even easier.

Here is the monthly line-up for 2016.

January: Science-Fiction + New Adult
February: Mystery-Thriller + Speculative-Fiction
March: Romance + Literary Fiction
April: Young Adult + Apocalyptic-Post Apocalyptic
May: Classics + Steampunk
June: Non-Fiction + Mythological/Regional
July: Dystopian + Graphic Novels
August: Contemporary + Historical
September: Humour + Retellings (Mythological or Fairytales)
October: Horror + Paranormal
November: Fantasy + Gothic
December: Action + Adventure

Join us if you dare!

Just click on the link at the top.

 

The Octopus by Frank Norris

The Octopus
A Story of California
by Frank Norris

TheOctopus1

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First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

Just after passing Caraher’s saloon, on the County Road that ran south from Bonneville, and that divided the Broderson ranch from that of Los Muertos, Presley was suddenly aware of the faint and prolonged blowing of a steam whistle that he knew must come from the railroad shops near the depot at Bonneville. In starting out from the ranch house that morning, he had forgotten his watch, and was now perplexed to know whether the whistle was blowing for twelve or for one o’clock. He hoped the former. Early that morning he had decided to make a long excursion through the neighbouring country, partly on foot and partly on his bicycle, and now noon was come already, and as yet he had hardly started. As he was leaving the house after breakfast, Mrs. Derrick had asked him to go for the mail at Bonneville, and he had not been able to refuse.

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TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

When Presley reached Annixter’s ranch house, he found young Annixter himself stretched in his hammock behind the mosquito-bar on the front porch, reading “David Copperfield,” and gorging himself with dried prunes.

Annixter–after the two had exchanged greetings–complained of terrific colics all the preceding night.

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The Octopus is the current group read (through January 2) at the 19th Century Literature group. It is available in numerous formats from Project Gutenberg and in audio from LibriVox. Visit Becky’s Books for extras (historical information and related photos).

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What are you currently reading?

2016 Reading Challenges – Socrates’ Book Reviews

I plan to participate in both the Reading Challenges hosted by Yvonne at Socrates’ Book Reviews!

My progress will be recorded at Goodreads (so easy and simple). You can find out more information about each individual Challenge at the link provided and sign up there or at Goodreads. Just click on the title below.

Cruisin’ Thru The Cozies 2016

cozychallenge2016

It’s Level 4 – Sleuth Extraordinaire – Read 21 or more books for me again this year! Piece of cake, love the fun Cozies.

 

What an Animal IX 2016

WhatAnimal2016

I don’t read a lot of books featuring animals, but the guidelines are very broad. Level 2 – Read 7-12 worked for me in 2015, so I will go for that level again in 2016.

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If either of these peak your interest, visit Yvonne’s blog and join us there or at Goodreads.

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery

TTCharlieBrownThanksgiving

 

 

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

 

Madame Michel has the elegance of the hedgehog: on the outside, she’s covered in quills, a real fortress, but my gut feeling is that on the inside, she has the same simple refinement as the hedgehog: a deceptively indolent little creature, fiercely solitary – and terribly elegant.

Well, having said that, I admit it: I’m not a clairvoyant.

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FirstChapFirstPara

 

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

 

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, Manuela, my only friend, comes for tea with me in my lodge. Manuela is a simple woman and twenty years wasted stalking dust in other people’s homes has in no way robbed her of her elegance. Besides, stalking dust is a very euphemistic way to put it. But where the rich are concerned, things are rarely called by their true name.

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The Elegance of the Hedgehog
(L’elegance du herisson)
by Muriel Barbery

Elegance

What are you currently reading? Do you have anything to share with us?

Dead Ever After by Charlaine Harris

Dead Ever After
(Sookie Stackhouse #13)
by Charlaine Harris

DeadEverAfter

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FirstChapFirstPara

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

The morning after I raised my boss from the dead, I got up to find him sitting half-dressed in my backyard on my chaise lounge. It was about ten a.m. on a July day, and the sun was bathing the backyard in brilliant heat. Sam’s hair was turned into a bright tangle of red and gold. He opened his eyes as I came down the back steps and crossed the yard. I was still in my nightshirt, and I didn’t even want to think about my own hair. It was pretty much one big snarl.

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WitchReadTT

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

After he had drifted back into the woods and I had locked the house up tight, I sat in front of my computer. I had planned to check my e-mail, but instead I found myself trying to unravel Bill’s meaning.

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This is the last Sookie novel, wrapping up the series. I am curious as to what will happen and how it will all end. I’ve heard many readers mention that they didn’t like the way the series ended.

What are you reading now? Do you have anything to share with us?

Reading Challenges – 3rd Quarter 2015

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20BooksSummer

20 Books of Summer 2015 hosted by Cathy at 746 Books ended September 4. My wrap-up post is here.

RMFAO2015

RMFAO 2015 Classics Challenge

The top level for this Challenge is Level 5: Professor – 12 or more books which I completed during the second quarter. Extras for this quarter include:

21. Rameau’s Nephew by Denis Diderot
22. The Gambler by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
23. The Magician by Somerset Maugham
24. The Nemesis of Fire by Algernon Blackwood
25. Fifteen Hundred Miles an Hour by Charles Dixon
26. Ourika by Claire de Duras
27. The Morgesons by Elizabeth Stoddard
28. Three Men on the Bummel by Jerome K. Jerome
29. Wyllard’s Weird by Mary Elizabeth Braddon

RMFAO 2015 Genre Challenge

This is still my favorite Reading Challenge for the year! A different genre is explored each month and a different level may be chosen for each month. The third quarter of 2015:

July – Dystopian/Apocalyptic (Level 1: Casual Reader – 1 book):
1. Frozen (Heart of Dread #1) by Melissa de la Cruz and Michael Johnston

August – Contemporary (Level 2: Frequent Reader – 2 books):
1. U is for Undertow (Kinsey Millhone #21) by Sue Grafton
2. Deep Pockets (Carlotta Carlyle #10) by Linda Barnes

September – Humour (Level 2: Frequent Reader – 2 books):
1. Three Men on the Bummel by Jerome K. Jerome
2. Roadkill (Kinky Friedman #10) by Kinky Friedman

RMFAO 2015 Series Challenge

Again this quarter, the same as Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015 below.

Yvonne2015

What An Animal Reading Challenge VIII 2015

Level 2: Read 7 – 12

6. Fever Season (Benjamin January #2) by Barbara Hambly

Cruisin’ Thru the Cozies Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Sleuth Extraordinaire – Read 20 or more

13. U is for Undertow (Kinsey Millhone #21) by Sue Grafton
14. A Royal Pain (Royal Spyness #2) by Rhys Bowen
15. Deep Pockets (Carlotta Carlyle #10) by Linda Barnes
16. Real Murders (Aurora Teagarden #1) by Charlaine Harris

Finishing the Series Reading Challenge 2015

Level 4: Expert series reader – Complete 4 or more series. During this quarter, I only read one of the eleven remaining on the list as of June 30, leaving ten to be read during the last quarter of 2015.

KINSEY MILLHONE series by Sue Grafton
21. U is for Undertow

Riedel2015Mystery

My Kind Of Mystery
February 1, 2015 – January 31, 2016

Level 5: Invisible Floor 41 or more:

26. Fever Season by Barbara Hambly
27. The Overlook by Michael Connelly
28. U is for Undertow by Sue Grafton
29. A Royal Pain by Rhys Bowen
30. Deep Pockets by Linda Barnes
31. Real Murders by Charlaine Harris
32. Graveyard Dust by Barbara Hambly

GoodReads2015

My 2015 Goodreads Challenge is one hundred books. As of September 30, I have finished seventy-six books.

Graveyard Dust by Barbara Hambly

Graveyard Dust
(Benjamin January #3)
by Barbara Hambly

GraveyardDust

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FirstChapFirstPara

First Chapter/First Paragraph/Tuesday Intros is hosted by Bibliophile By The Sea. To play along, share the first paragraph (or a few) from a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

African drums in darkness sullen as tar.

Rossini’s “Di tanti palpit” unspooling like golden ribbon from the ballroom’s open windows.

Church bells and thunder.

Benjamin January flexed his aching sholders and thought, Rain coming. Leaning on the corner of Colonel Pritchard’s ostentatious house, he could smell the sharp scent in the hot weight of the night, hear the shift in the feverish tempo of the crickets and the frogs. The dim orange glow of an oil lamp fell through the servants’ door beside him, tipping the weeds beyond the edge of the yard with fire.

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TeaserTuesdaysADailyRhythm

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme hosted by Jenn of A Daily Rhythm. Anyone can participate. If you’re new to Teaser Tuesdays, the details are at Jenn’s A Daily Rhythm or on my Tuesday Memes Page.

Given the trouble his curiosity had caused him in the past, January reflected that he should know better. In any case, he had a good idea of what he would find in the darkness where the trees got thick.

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Barbara Hambly definitely has a way with words. She also seems to write in multiple genres. This series, historical mysteries, is set in 1830s New Orleans. The first book I remember reading by her is Ishmael, a Star Trek novel featuring Spock (my favorite!). I read it in the 1980s, so I have been reading Hambly’s books for three decades. The award-winning author has also written in the science fiction, fantasy and supernatural genres.

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Do you enjoy reading series? What are some of your favorites?