Book Connections

Books in my Future!

book cover This one I pre-ordered and I have an email from the Book Depository saying its on its way. Its by Irish author Carmel Harrington who has recently become an auto buy for me. I don’t really care what its about as I anticipate it’ll be good anyway. It says on the blurb something about perhaps size doesn’t matter. When this book will arrive? Who knows? I am not sure if we are allowing online stuff from overseas coming into the country. But I guess it’ll arrive sometime this year!

book cover I liked the first book I read by this author and I will certainly buy and read this one. Here is a bit of the blurb “In 1893, there’s no such thing as witches. There used to be, in the wild, dark days before the burnings began, but now witching is nothing but tidy charms and nursery rhymes. If the modern woman wants any measure of power, she must find it at the ballot box.”  Paranormal – fantasy.

book cover I’ll need to wait until August for this romantic suspense book. There are big but very quickly read. This is #24. I haven’t read them all but this is #2 in the Sacramento books and I read the #1 of that plus the Cincinnati books.

This one publishes in June and I’ll buy it. This is the USA cover although mine will be the dark black international one. This involves a wolf and an Arrow. Can’t come soon enough. The Pay Changeling series is one of my big favourites in case you didn’t know by now!

book coverDoes this one need any introduction? Romantic suspense usually at its best with Nora Roberts. This one comes out in May, I may buy the audiobook of this one depending on the narrator. I don’t need to know what its about, I know it will be readable for certain.

 

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Book Connections

Books by New Zealand Authors

Today I am sharing five  contemporary New Zealand authors I have read or intend reading. New Zealand has many authors although I confess I read only a few of them. Mainly that’s because of my taste. Another day I’ll share some of the previous NZ authors I’ve enjoyed. Some of the books have a NZ setting and some are set elsewhere.

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New Zealand author Nalini Singh is a favourite of mine as you may have guessed. I have come to love her paranormal series and I’ve read a couple of her contemporary romance.

A Madness of Sunshine  is set in the South Island of New Zealand, is a murder mystery set in contemporary times. I have read it and really enjoyed it. Published 2019.

book cover When it all Turned to Custard by Danielle Hawkins is one  I own and bought after I read a review by an Australian blogger. I haven’t read it yet but its in the queue. It too is set in New Zealand. Hmm I just see a recommendation on the back by one of my favourite Australian authors – Fiona Lowe who says ” An entertaining read full of humour, heart and soul.” I should move it up the list. Published 2019

book coverSoraya Lane has written both romance and women’s fiction. Its the latter that I enjoy. The Spitfire Girls is set overseas and is an insight into  the courageous contribution women made in both England and the USA towards the WW2 endeavours. These women were willing to put their lives on the line and take on piloting planes to where they were needed. And… they were very successful.

Soraya M. Lane does an excellent job helping us get inside the lives of such young women. Often they were up against ‘the establishment’ and the attitudes and prejudices of the populace.  Published 2019.

book coverWhat a honey of a book. I was originally enticed into this book by the US edition with its warm tones on the cover, however as I read the book I came to love this cover too. Sugar is a treasure and the amazing ‘family’ of people she gathered around her was endearing and satisfying. As it says on the cover – a novel of honey, love and manners.

So The Wedding Bees – awesome. Loved Queen Elizabeth 1 and 6. Witty, warm and charming is one way to describe this book. It does explore some important issues in a very gentle way. Well done Sarah-Kate Lynch. Raising my glass to The Wedding Bees and the Buzz-off Bride.  Set in the USA. Published 2014 Unfortunately Sarah-Kate has moved on to writing scripts for TV shows so no recent books!

book cover Finally a book I bought this week. This is by Farid Ahmed about his wife, the Christchurch massacre and his journey to forgiveness. All royalties go to St John Ambulance. As the one year date for this awful shooting and I heard about this book o the radio, I was immediately interested in reading it. Farid’s wife was killed in this massacre. I believe the book will build my understanding of the experience of another New Zealander.

 

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Month in Review

February Reading Wrap Up.

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Total books read this month: 9

New to me authors:

Karen Hawkins
Alix E Harrow. *
Brenda Janowitz.
Sofie Ryan*

Ones I’d read again marked by a *

Top Book for February

Fantasy and most likely in the realm of literary fiction.

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Looking forward to reading in  March

Incoming Books for February

Purchased

Library Books

From NetGalley or Edelweiss

Audio Books Purchased

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Linking up wit Nicole at Feed Your Fiction Addiction.

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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I had a good week, summer is in full swing now. I had my first summer swim this last week. I went into the city and with a friend we crossed the harbour in a local ferry and spent the day at a popular bay. It was one of those perfect days.

What I read last week:

A fun romance, Fijian/Indian Bollywood style and set in Auckland, NZ.

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What I am reading now:

Different but interesting. I am half way through, some things revealed now so wondering where it will vere next.  It’s a bit of fantasy, time travel or door travel and story.

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Up next:

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Last Week’s Posts

Books and Authors from Childhood

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#IMWAYR

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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Well a good week, hope yours was too. Family time, reading, quilting, watching sport, a little bit of housework and gardening. Nothing too strenuous!

What I read last week:

What I am reading now:

I heard so many good things about this book I had to buy the Kindle copy awhile back. Sexy cover!

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Still listening to The House on Legare St and moving through it.

Up next:

I hope I like this, even if I don’t, this cover is totally gorgeous in hardback. I’d keep it just for it.

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Last Week’s Posts

An Every Day Hero.  Laura Trentham

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Book Connections

Series and Authors I Treasure

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As readers we all most likely get hooked into series we love. I have quite a number of them and another day I’ll post some more. Most of them other readers have hooked me into. I’ve just read a post and I’ve ordered #1 in a cozy mystery series from the library. It’s not my wheelhouse of reading but… I just might get hooked.

Outlander Series.

book cover Back in 1994 it all began for me. I was teaching and I can’t remember how I chose this book, but I did. On the staff another teacher was hooked too and we often talked about that Scottish Highlander Jamie. It’s time travel at its very best.

I have read everyone in the series since. Some of them are very long but I’ve loved them, sometimes skipping a few gory parts. There are eight books so far and number nine is in the wings “Go Tell the Bees I am Gone.” This series is outstanding in audiobook form and I have reread some of the books this way as well.

I once went to the city and listened to Diana Gabaldon speak after one of her books came out and she was visiting our country. She was very interesting as a speaker.

The Troubleshooters

book cover The Troubleshooters is fast paced romantic suspense. The characters carry on from book to book, with one character mostly to the forefront.  There are about seventeen main books in this series – I have them all. I want to do a reread at some point.  Navy seals – what’s not to like!

I learned about this series from readers on the Susan Elizabeth Phillips readers’ board before it disbanded and went to Facebook. There were always great recommendations there and I really expanded out into USA authors through  that.

Suzanne Brockmann has moved on to film making I think and no more books in recent years.

Virgin River

book cover Once I was stymied what to read. Nothing satisfied me. I’d read a little online about Virgin River and I thought well I’ll take a chance. This was pre-Kindle days. So I bought a second hand copy I think on the Thriftbooks website. The rest is history. I was hooked and ever after that I bought every one that came out. Mostly via Amazon I think

It’s set in a small town in North West America, and each book explores the lives of new characters while maintaining some of the previous ones. It’s romance with sometimes a little suspense thrown in. Another series I’d happily reread. And I am enjoying the Netflix series of it.

I loved it and since then pretty much have read everything Robyn Carr since.

Shenandoah Album Series

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There are five books in this series and I loved them all. They are what I guess are Women’s Fiction. They explore various issues and have very memorable characters. This series started me on my love of quilting.

 

I have reread most of them via audiobook which is really excellent via this format as well.

I had discovered Emilie Richards as an author myself by picking up one of her books at a book fair. Not one of this series but it started me on the road of looking out for her books. Now I wouldn’t miss anything she writes.

Pys/Changeling series

book cover The Pay/Changeling series I was slow to take up. I read others comments on the SEP board and was semi tempted. I thought it would be too hot for me. I saw a copy of one of the books in a staff members bag and I asked her about the series. She lent me some of the first ones.

I was hooked. I loved these shape shifters and the mysteries and evil they had to contend with. Nalini Singh has built this world so well. I didn’t think I’d like shape shifter books but this series is just so much fun, plus heart warming and heart reaching.

I am still reading all the new ones now as they come out. I want to do a reread!

 

 

So what would be one of your favourite series?

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Review

A Madness of Sunshine. Nalini Singh

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Publisher: Hachette Australia
Date: December 5th 2019
Source: Publisher via NetGalley

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One chapter into a Madness of Sunshine I thought to myself “Nalini Singh has nailed it!”  What has she nailed? The setting – it is so west coast South Island New Zealand. Reading into it I got that same feeling within when I fly in from overseas and see the hills and I know I am back in “my place”. As well as drawing for us the picture of the atmospheric west coast in all its beauty she is also able to give us the darker side of it.  I also loved her use of Maori words, often she doesn’t give any translation – although  in other places where it might be more difficult to intuit the meaning she gives a little added hint.

It is a murder mystery, a thriller really. There is a murder and some possible cold cases. I hate being in suspense, I am the kind of reader who will peek at the ending, but this time I didn’t. I changed my mind a few times about who it was. Just when I made up my mind something was placed before me to  doubt that decision.  This is not a fast paced action novel but rather a painstaking step by step sorting through the gathering of details. With the type of murder and the culprit finally exposed I just thought it is so true and reminded me of recent court cases that have taken place in recent times here in New Zealand. Chilling and yet real.

Two of the main characters are in this small town with secrets and dark backgrounds of their own. We have Will who is a police officer who has come to this small west coast town. I very much liked his caring approach to those he was there to protect. He was an excellent detective but had a case go wrong on him. Anahera has returned to her home place after her husband has died. She escaped from Golden Cove many years ago. Her life experiences have contributed to making her into a strong, compassionate woman. Slowly Will and Anahera work together to bring peace and justice to this twisted situation. And they learn to trust again, forming a very positive relationship. But note, the relationship is not centre stage, it’s the murder and mystery that takes that.

It’s good! I do prefer Nalini Singh’s paranormal novels but … she has a talent for this kind of a story. I highly recommend it.

As an aside I was interested and delighted to see  New Zealand bookstores placing this book on their front tables. It has had good publicity on the radio as well. Nalini is a New York Times best selling author – but because paranormal is not widely read she goes under the radar. Her writing is so good she deserves to be to the forefront. I hope books like this raise her profile here!

A great review for this book can be found over at Caffeinated Reviewer – for the audiobook version. I notice Nalini Singh even included a quote from it in her recent newsletter.

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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Well I know! It’s December, so hard to believe. My reading is still slow but still getting a little done. At present I am watching cricket on TV and writing this post. Other things are getting in the road of reading!

Hope you have all recovered from your Thanksgiving celebrations and had safe travel if you had to take transport.

What I read last week:

Only book I read this week, and it was very good. Because it was a rather noir mystery/suspense I decided to leave Celine by Peter Heller to a little later.
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What I am reading now:

So I chose this lovely Christmas book that has been sitting on my shelf for a few weeks waiting for the right time.

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And no advance with my audiobook, I sure need to pick it up again and get going with it!

Up next:

I intend making a choice from one of these according to my mood at the time….

I’ll pick after finishing my present read.

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

badge
It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organise yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn here at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.

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I had a good week of walking and reading. On Saturday we celebrated my sister’s 60th birthday at a café, my little great nephew decided I was an easy touch and by much throwing himself my way and then indicating the park managed to have me do his will!

I also went to see Downton Abbey this week, enjoyed it, I love the big castle and grounds. It was fun seeing all the characters up there on the big screen.

What I read last week:

I read A Curious Beginning for the Modern Mrs Darcy book club. It was a fun read, I had seen many bloggers sharing this series and while its not my usual genre I was happy to pick it up and read. It was good, but I am not sure I will continue with the series but you never know. Life on Loan is a book up for review – women’s fiction, more my fare and I liked it.

What I am reading now:

From a favourite paranormal series. I should have it finished by the close of September!

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Up next:

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Last Week’s Posts

Coming Home for Christmas. RayAnne Thayne

Christmas from the Heart.  Sheila Roberts

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Book Connections, Review

Five Favourite Author Books in 2019

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Favourite authors are authors I’ll always buy their books, or most likely pre-order them so they arrive soon after publishing date. Most of them don’t appear in our shops at all or take a week to get there. I did win Under Currents which was very nice. I love a win, who doesn’t! However Nora won’t lose out because I’ll buy the audiobook for my sister as she is a fan too.

Book Cover Nalini Singh is one of my favourite authors from recent years – like the last decade! Her Psy/Changeling paranormal series is the one of hers I enjoy the most. Wolf Dance takes us back to San Francisco and the wolves den, plus the emergence of a new kind of E Psy. I loved the warmth and wit, the catch up with past characters, and the dual between darkness and goodness. Plus two new main characters who were such fun and of course had good sparks flying between them. Memory is one gutsy heroine and I loved her nose to nose encounters with Alexei the wolf changeling. Five stars from me of course. Ouch I want the June 2020 book now. Thinking I might go back and start rereading this series via audio.

book coverThere is no doubt about it – Nora Roberts knows how to write great romantic suspense. There are times of intensity and times of a wonderful family, friendships blossoming and gardens getting big time makeovers. I loved how both Darby and Zane overcome the awful things life has dealt them. Darby’s ninja skills especially were something to admire for sure. Zod the dog – what a darling. Britt – Zanes’s sister, another strong woman. So much to love and cheer for, so much to be sad about. Five stars from this reader.

book coverOne sister disappears, the other – Ryan, is called upon to take care of two girls – seven and five, who seem shell shocked and withdrawn. Add in one parent who is working out on a submarine and rarely heard of. The grandparents have their own stress with Ryan’s dad having had a heart operation. The sister who has disappeared seems to be key to the whole family situation.  A mystery that slowly unravels and a family that eventually realigns itself. Very engaging read.

book coverAh, Kristan Higgins can sure write a book! Such a mix of characters, some strong – some weak. What a great mother Emma is, Riley such a delightful teen. And yes to Tess! I think she is a rampaging 2/3 year old. What havoc she caused, would love to see her as a teen and young woman! For another character – what is it like to carry a secret that scars for life? We see what it is to be a great Dad, and a terrible Dad. Great story, full of emotion, sadness and joy, some humour – the trademark of KH. And by mistake I ordered two of these books – just too overly keen!

book cover I enjoyed this latest novel of Wendy Wax. I liked the author angle, showing the tough world of publishing and having to produce. And then there is  the angst of falling out with your best friend. That happens!  Mother / daughter relationships also feature. They too have a wonderful relationship but what about if there is a secret lurking in there? All the main characters are flawed, in a very realistic, relatable way. There is struggle, and  forgiveness is not easily extended. And I loved the photo at the front of the book of Wendy Wax’s aunt in a stunning wedding dress. I can see how a story needed to be written!