What I Read: July

I read 8 books in July, all fiction. 6 were on the Kindle, 2 were in print.

Bertie Plays the Blues by Alexander McCall Smith (2013).
The next book in the fun, light 44 Scotland Street series. 7-year-old Bertie’s struggles with his mother continue. Domenica and Angus are engaged. Matthew and Elspeth are now the parents of triplets! Life, in other words.

Attachments by Rainbow Rowell (2011).
It feels a little bit like sacrilege to admit it, but this is the first book I’ve read by Rainbow Rowell. I really liked it, one of my favorites of a month of reading. Lincoln gets a job of “Internet security officer” at a Nebraska newspaper. In practical terms, this means reading emails by the paper’s employees that get flagged for “inappropriate” content. He comes to know and like two friends through their email exchanges, which they don’t know he is reading. A fun twist on an epistolary novel and a really quick read.

Turn of Mind by Alice LaPlante (2011).
This had been on my To Read list for a while and I picked up when it was a Kindle Daily Deal. It’s a mystery that circles around the murder of a retired schoolteacher. Suspected is the teacher’s best friend a world-class surgeon with Alzheimer’s. I didn’t love it but it was solid. Not sad to have spent $1.99 on it.

The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt (2011).
The Sisters Brothers was on a lot of Best lists when it was first published in 2011. I am not really much of a Westerns reader, but it got enough good press that I thought it was worth checking out when it too was a Kindle Daily Deal. Eli and Charlie Sisters are professional killers working in the Western territories in 1851. Given that, I should have been prepared for how violent the book was, but I really wasn’t. Reviews call it darkly comic, but I didn’t enjoy the humor. It’s definitely well written, accolades well deserved, just not really my cup of tea. I’d recommend True Grit if you want to try a Western, but they aren’t your usual genre.

Takedown Twenty by Janet Evanovich (2013).
Oh Stephanie Plum. You are always there for me when I want a super quick, amusing read. If life is feeling hard, well, at least I am not a fairly-inept bounty hunter in Trenton!

The Little Lady Agency by Hester Browne (2006).
I picked this up because it was recommended by Everyday Reading and the premise sounded amusing. If I haven’t made this clear yet, I am definitely focused on quick, easy, amusing reads this summer! After getting laid off, Melissa starts her own agency helping socially inept men with the social graces. There is a love interest of course. It’s sweet and fluffy and fun. First in a series.

The Luck Uglies by Paul Durham (2014).
A thoroughly enjoyed Children’s fantasy novel about the Village Drowning, ruled by an evil earl and threatened by the terrifying Bog Noblins. Will the banished secret society, the Luck Uglies save them? The book reminded me of novels by Tamora Pierce. Definitely a keeper.

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel (2009).
This book made me like Thomas Cromwell. I didn’t really have an opinion about him before, didn’t know anything about him other than he was a non-royal ruler of England, and that that fact wasn’t without, um, conflict. The events Wolf Hall predate that – you see him as very much self-made man, smart, sympathetic, and very, very competent. Not sure if it’s a fair portrayal, but it does make for a very good read.

What I Read: July

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