Book Talk Tuesday: Catching Up

I’ve decided 2018 is going to be about catching up with my favorite series. The last few months have been filled with some great books, but also some lackluster entries. I realized that I have many favorite authors and their characters that I’ve set aside for other reading.

I’m going to fix that. I’ve made a list of what’s next.

downloadAlexander McCall Smith’s No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency books are always wonderful, but I hadn’t read one in three years. So I found THE SATURDAY BIG TENT WEDDING PARTY in my TBR stack and read it! It was lovely, of course, although I had a few quibbles with dangling plot points at the end. Next will be LIMPOPO ACADEMY OF PRIVATE DETECTIVES.

From Susan Wiggs’ Willow Lake series, I just requested from the library, RETURN TO WILLOW LAKE. A few months ago, I did read MARRYING DAISY BELLAMY, so that’s one mystery solved.

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A friend gave me a copy of Alan Bradley’s AS CHIMNEY SWEEPERS COME TO DUST, but that’s three or four stories ahead of where I left off in his Flavia de Luce series. Fortunately, I have a cousin who’s also a fan and she’s loaning me SPEAKING FROM AMONG THE BONES this weekend.

I’ve already read three of Jan Karon’s Mitford books so far this year, and that’s what spurred my impetus to catch up on all my favorite series.  I just finished IN THE COMPANY OF OTHERS, which is set in Ireland. Father Tim and Cynthia visit the ‘auld country and of course find a parish away from home to minister to. Next download (3)will be COME RAIN OR COME SHINE. I read these slightly out of order. Earlier this year I read SOMEWHERE SAFE WITH SOMEBODY GOOD, which is directly after IN THE COMPANY OF OTHERS. I’m trusting that picking up COME RAIN OR COME SHINE next won’t be a problem.

Since Sue Grafton’s death in late December, I’ve also been reviewing her books to make sure I didn’t miss any along the way. I don’t think I did, but I’m definitely behind. So S IS FOR SILENCE is next on my list.

download (2)I have one last Deborah Knott title by Margaret Maron that I’ve been saving, but it seems appropriate to add it to my list. Maron announced LONG UPON THE LAND would be the last Deborah Knott novel. Maron is still writing, but I don’t love her Sigrid Harald books as much as I do Deborah and Dwight and the family.

Finally, my last series to catch up on isn’t a series. I do love Earlene Fowler’s Benni Harper books and I’ve read them all. I haven’t kept up with her stand alones. I added two of those to my list. LOVE MERCY will be up first.

And then Nora Roberts. I haven’t read all of the IN DEATH series and Roberts is far too download (4)prolific for me to attempt to keep up. I’ve decided to go back and read the first in the series, NAKED IN DEATH, and then read whatever is in my TBR stack and whatever crosses my path. The books don’t require being read in order. The characters change slowly enough that it’s easy to pick up anytime. These books are all about the case, although Lt. Eve Dallas and Roark are fascinating and compelling protagonists.

Of course, as my favorite authors release new stories, I’ll add those in. They’re not included on this list because I’m already caught up with everything they’ve written. This includes Susan Mallery, Kristan Higgins, Susan May Warren, Kathryn Cushman, Tamara Alexander. I could keep going, but I’ll stop for now.

Last year I read 100 books. This year, I’m at 37 so far. Looks like I may hit the century mark again.

Expect reviews in the next weeks. And please, ask me how the list is coming along. I estimate I have 27 books to read to consider myself “caught up.” And I’ve pre-ordered several books from my favorites that will be released in the next few months and will have to be factored in.

Gotta go. I’ve got a book waiting!

 

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Book Talk Tuesday: On My TBR

My To Be Read Mountain has grown again and is threatening to topple over. Both the real mountain and the virtual.

Here are a few of the books I’m looking forward to enjoying:

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I’m a huge Malcolm Gladwell fan. Each of his books have been thought-provoking and OUTLIERS changed my life. I got this one, DAVID AND GOLIATH, for Christmas last year and I set it aside until I had time to savor it. That has not happened, so I’m going to gobble it up next. It’s about the myth of the underdog vs. the favorite.

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I’m reading book one of Sara Richardson’s Heart of the Rockies series, NO BETTER MAN, and I’m looking forward to diving into book 2, SOMETHING LIKE LOVE. I’ve known Sara for years and I’m so excited for her! She was a RITA nominee this year for Debut Novel for NO BETTER MAN. She signed a copy of SOMETHING LIKE LOVE for me at the RWA conference in July. I’ll be reviewing NO BETTER MAN here in the next few weeks, then I’ll be perfectly primed for book 2.

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Shauna Niequist. COLD TANGERINES. BREAD AND WINE. Her newest is PRESENT OVER PERFECT. I’ve heard and read so many great things about this book that I can’t even. 😉 I ordered it Thursday, and it arrived Sunday. I cracked it open. I smelled the promise of challenge and change and renewal. I. can’t. wait. to read this book.

THE THREE WEISSMANNS OF WESTPORT by Cathleen 3wwSchine. A friend texted me on a Monday morning a few weeks ago to say she had read this book over the weekend. She … I can’t say she loved it or even enjoyed it, although she did both of those. It caught her by surprise, how well the author captured the emotions of a suddenly single woman. My friend related to it on many different levels. I put a copy in my cart when I saw it, and I’m eager to read it.

And finally, Kristin Hannah’s SSIUMMER ISLAND. I’ve seen Kristin Hannah’s books on racks and best seller lists for years, and she was always a writer I figured I’d enjoy, but I always had so many other books on my Mt. TBR, that I never added her to the list. This one was on sale for the Kindle recently, and the premise caught my attention, so I grabbed it. I have a feeling I’m going to love it. A very strong feeling.

 

Tell me, what books are you looking forward to this fall? As much as I whine about too many books, so little time, I’m always on the watch for the extraordinary!