Jump to content
Forums forums
PRIMETIMER
Rick Kitchen

What Are We Currently Reading?

Recommended Posts

12 hours ago, Calvada said:

After that I've got Val McDermid's latest, Still Life, next.  As you can tell, I read both non-fiction and fiction

Still on my library's waiting list for Still Life.  No one writes like Val.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

I'm reading Ruth Reichl's Gourmet memoir, Save Me the Plums, and am enjoying it hugely. I worked at Condé Nast, so all of the inside-baseball stuff isn't annoying to me. It once again makes me very glad I am not ambitious. It also makes me sad for what the magazine world has become post-pandemic. 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post

I just finished The Searcher and I'm not really sure how I felt about it. It was good in the usual ways Tana French's books are good. But I didn't like it as much as the Dublin Murder Squad series or even The Witch Elm. But part of me thinks I'm being a bit unfair because 

Spoiler

I just kept getting Hot Fuzz vibes and then it did end up having a similar plot to Hot Fuzz in the end and that was really distracting. It also gave me American Gods Lakeside/Hinzelman vibes which also ended up being kind of correct.

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post

Love & Olives by Jenna Evans Welch (she has others in this loosely connected series, Love & Gelato, Love & Luck). I liked Love & Gelato...but Love & Olives annoyed me from the start. I cannot stand books or other fiction (like TV shows) where simple communication could solve all the problems. Also, the love interest is supposed to be quirky and charming but I only found him annoying. And I wanted to slap the shit out of Liv's dad because he up and abandoned her when she was a child. Everything comes out at the end in a big information dump and by then I didn't care anymore because everyone kept lying to Liv when she should probably have been told the truth years ago.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

I’m going to start Winds of War by Herman Wouk this weekend. First I have to get over the title. Regis Philbin used to call his wife Joy’s sister that and it makes me laugh whenever I hear it. It’s a bit long and I may have to pick up a second book for lighter reading if it gets too long in the tooth about history. The world is depressing enough without a book to bring me down. 

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post

Looking for something lighter in these troubled times? 
Check out Heart of Barkness (yes, BARKness) or Dog On It, by Spencer Quinn
Bernie is a private investigator in Nevada.  His partner is Chet, the dog.  Much of the dialogue is delivered as thoughts in Chet's canine head. And his thoughts are quite humorous.

  • Like 1
  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post

3 hours ago, Mindthinkr said:

I’m going to start Winds of War by Herman Wouk this weekend. First I have to get over the title. Regis Philbin used to call his wife Joy’s sister that and it makes me laugh whenever I hear it.

That's the first thing I thought of!

  • Laugh 2

Share this post


Link to post

I read The Winds of War decades ago and remember it as well written sprawling family saga.  Enjoy!

I'm about half way through Things in Jars by Jess Kidd.  It's a quirky story about a female detective/forensic scientist in 1840s England who is trying to locate the young child of a baronet.  This little girl may or may not be a mermaid.  The detective's sidekicks are a 7' person of ambiguous gender and the snarky ghost of a dead boxer.  So far it's a lot of fun.

  • Like 3
  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post
2 hours ago, Haleth said:

I read The Winds of War decades ago and remember it as well written sprawling family saga.  Enjoy!

NBC, I think, made it into a miniseries that wasn't too bad, though Ali McGraw was tragically miscast. It was apparently one of the most expensive shows at the time, and it prompted David Letterman to quote the producer's comment at the Emmys: "Thanks to NBC [or whoever] for ponying up the dough." He just loved that, and "ponying up the dough" became a catchphrase of Letterman's for a while. Hee.

  • Like 2
  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post

I read The Winds of War and then its sequel War and Remembrance in high school because of a repeat of that miniseries and then its followup where Ali McGraw was replaced with Jane Seymour and because yes, I was that kind of kid. (Thanks, rural county library ordering system for always humoring me.)  I did learn an awful lot about the runup to the war and what actually happened. It was ... a lot though.

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post

I just finished Shadows in Death by  JD Robb.  It was okay.  I think maybe my expectations were too high.  I just wanted something more.  Parts of it I enjoyed but some was less interesting than I'd hoped.

One scene really bothered me when

Spoiler

Dallas removes Cobbs restraints after arresting him so he and Roarke can have a fist fight and all the police agree to lie about the circumstances of Roarke injuring Cobb by claiming Roarke and Cobb got into a fight after Cobb tried to flee.  It just made me uncomfortable that law enforcement would do that.  I don't care that Dallas and Roarke are the good guys and that Cobb was a monster.  I  just didn't like the integrity of these characters being diminished like this.   If Roberts wanted Roarke and Cobb to have a physical confrontation then they should have just had Cobb and Roarke get into it before Cobb was arrested and then there's no need for the police to lie about what happened.  I'm not saying Dallas has to be perfect and she has skirted the line in other books but this particular scene really struck me as particularly messed up because the danger was over.  They had the bad guy and he wasn't getting away.  Why break the rules and make up lies so Roarke and Cobb can physically deal with grudges?

I am going to start The Trouble with Hating You by Sajni Patel  about a woman who ends up having to work closely with the guy her family has been trying to set her up with.

Share this post


Link to post
On 11/14/2020 at 10:56 AM, nodorothyparker said:

I read The Winds of War and then its sequel War and Remembrance in high school because of a repeat of that miniseries and then its followup where Ali McGraw was replaced with Jane Seymour and because yes, I was that kind of kid. (Thanks, rural county library ordering system for always humoring me.)  I did learn an awful lot about the runup to the war and what actually happened. It was ... a lot though.

I've always wanted to read these books, they were always on my parents' bookshelf when I was a kid but was always put off by the heft.  I do love a good family dynastic saga, particularly those written by Ken Follett and John Jakes, as well as Jeffrey Archer.  The thing I remember most about "War and Remembrance" is the miniseries.  I think I was a freshman in high school, the social studies teacher had mentioned this series and encouraged us to watch.  Some of us did, and the only thing people talked about after one of the nights was the full frontal nudity.  It was a sad and decidedly unsexy scene, but shocking none the less to 14 year olds to actually see this on network television.

Going to add TWoW (and no, sadly for Game of Thrones fans, it's not THAT TWoW) to my reading list.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post

It dropped into my Kindle at midnight, but today, once I'm done with work, I'll be reading President Obama's memoir A Promised Land. Hearing his voice from some of the excerpts, I, who absolutely LOATHE audio books, am totally getting the audio of the book as well, since he's reading it. 

  • Like 10

Share this post


Link to post

You are so lucky, Scorp.  I checked the library this morning to get onto the waiting list and they haven't even ordered it yet.

  • Like 4
  • Sad 2

Share this post


Link to post

So I finished Troubled Blood, the new Strike book by Robert Galbraith/JK Rowling.  All 944 pages of it (well actually 925) and I played mental "where would I have made edits?"  It's to the point where  I am looking forward to the TV adaptation of it because edits will be made.

That said, for whatever reason, she's very easy to read (other than having to hold up the book).  I don't struggle getting into her books the way I do with others.  And I had less difficulty finishing the book than I sometimes have with books that are 1/3 of this length.

 

Edited by Irlandesa
  • Like 2
  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post

I just wanted to say that The Trouble with Hating You by Sajni Patel ended up being more than I thought based on the description.  I really appreciate a romance novel that have more depth than you anticipated.  There was a nice mix of humor and romance but also some serious obstacles.   The characters are flawed but still rootable.  I hope there’s a sequel.  I think there’d be interesting stories to tell about the lead characters circle of friends.

I am reading Of Blood and Bone by Nora Roberts next.  It’s the second in her Chronicles of the One series.  I appreciate the variety of Nora Roberts.  She can do fantasy, crime thrillers, and romance.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

The Witch Hunter by Max Seeck. I thought this was going to be a paranormal/horror thriller, and it kind of was, but mostly it was a police procedural/thriller. It started out strong, with a great suspense/horror sequence, and the first half was quite tense. But eventually it became kind of run-of-the-mill. Female detective scarred from her past, scary criminals, crazy serial killer, yadda yadda yadda. The book was all right, but I doubt I'll be picking up more in the series.

Next up: Invisible Girl by Lisa Jewell.

Edited by Minneapple
  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post
5 hours ago, GHScorpiosRule said:

It dropped into my Kindle at midnight, but today, once I'm done with work, I'll be reading President Obama's memoir A Promised Land. Hearing his voice from some of the excerpts, I, who absolutely LOATHE audio books, am totally getting the audio of the book as well, since he's reading it. 

I am getting it from my library tomorrow! I put it on hold the minute it appeared on the card catalog!

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

I just finished the most amazing good mystery (serial killer who dunnit) called "The Silence of the White City" by Eva Garcia Saenz. It was recently translated from the Spanish and there are two more books in the series that will be out next year, but the first book does not end on a cliffhanger the mystery is brilliantly resolved. I recommend this absolutely - brilliant writing, great characters and I learned a lot about a part of the world (the Basque territories of Spain) that was previously unknown to me.

  • Like 3
  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post

I'm reading The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman, & I'm enjoying it. I originally read the reviews & I wasn't sure, but I've just been buying whatever book I want because of quarantine, so I picked it up & I'm glad I did. Richard Osman is some kind of game show host (?) in England, & this is his first book, so I hope he writes more. It definitely falls into the amateur sleuths/cozy category, so if that's what you like, I highly recommend it. Another thing that's great about it is the chapters are all short, some are only one page, so I never have the problem of having to stop reading in the middle of a chapter because I have to do something, makes my reading life easier. 😁

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, GaT said:

I'm reading The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman, & I'm enjoying it. I originally read the reviews & I wasn't sure, but I've just been buying whatever book I want because of quarantine, so I picked it up & I'm glad I did. Richard Osman is some kind of game show host (?) in England, & this is his first book, so I hope he writes more. It definitely falls into the amateur sleuths/cozy category, so if that's what you like, I highly recommend it. Another thing that's great about it is the chapters are all short, some are only one page, so I never have the problem of having to stop reading in the middle of a chapter because I have to do something, makes my reading life easier. 😁

Thank you for that. I have been eyeing that one for a while. Love Richard Osman on all the UK panel shows, very funny and extremely tall but you never know how that (the funny, not the tall) will translate into a story. I like a nice cozy mystery so I will move it up the list. 

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, Mabinogia said:

Thank you for that. I have been eyeing that one for a while. Love Richard Osman on all the UK panel shows, very funny and extremely tall but you never know how that (the funny, not the tall) will translate into a story. I like a nice cozy mystery so I will move it up the list. 

Come back & post what you think of it. I didn't mention it, but I think the mystery is interesting too, I'm close to the end & have no idea who did it.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

Just finished When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole, which was excellent. A few pages into Home Before Dark by Riley Sager and so far, so very, very good. 

  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post

Just finished: Invisible Girl by Lisa Jewell. It took me awhile to get into it--I didn't really care about any of the characters and the way it was told just wasn't hooking me. A lot of very short "scenes" that made it hard for me to find my footing in the book's world. I became more gripped around the halfway point, and ultimately thought it stuck the landing, but I don't know if "I'd gone through 50% before it really got going for me" is a ringing endorsement.

Next up: The Girl in the Mirror by Rose Carlyle

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Just completed The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls and while I enjoyed it well enough and it was a fairly quick and easy read, I couldn't help feeling like it was missing something. I just felt like there was more meat that could have been added to the story, if that makes sense. 

I'm almost done with The Heirs and that one is certainly interesting. I don't think I've ever read a book with so many people just claiming kids that aren't theirs or people lying about kids being other people's own - just one tangled mess of crazy. But I love the writing and the story is fascinating. 

Share this post


Link to post
21 hours ago, helenamonster said:

Just finished: Invisible Girl by Lisa Jewell. It took me awhile to get into it--I didn't really care about any of the characters and the way it was told just wasn't hooking me. A lot of very short "scenes" that made it hard for me to find my footing in the book's world. I became more gripped around the halfway point, and ultimately thought it stuck the landing, but I don't know if "I'd gone through 50% before it really got going for me" is a ringing endorsement.

Next up: The Girl in the Mirror by Rose Carlyle

I just finished both of these exact two books! Invisible Girl was OK. It didn't really grip me either. The characters were just OK.

I really enjoyed The Girl in the Mirror. The plot is a little like that show Sarah Michelle did where she played twins, the one that was canceled quickly. Great characters (I loved Iris, the main POV character), fun setting, good twists.

 

I found one point of the ending a little absurd, when Ben just shoots one of the twins thinking he knows which one he's shooting. Like dude, make sure you know which twin you're shooting! The ending also upset me because I really grew to love Iris as a character and I wanted her to have everything, but Summer just waltzed away with it all.

Edited by Minneapple
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

I recently finished reading "The Lantern Men", the latest Ruth Galloway mystery by Elly Griffiths.  It was a vast improvement on her previous two Ruth Galloway novels, which were utter crap.  The mystery in this one was really intriguing, and although I did figure out who didn't commit all the murders, the ending still managed to surprise me.  Mind you, there's still way too much Nelson melodrama (God, I loathe that character and would love it if he died), and I felt at least one character was treated very shabbily in order to service that increasingly ridiculous story line.  But overall, I'm glad I didn't abandon the series after the last two dreadful books.

Plus I did love that

Spoiler

Nelson was wrong about Ivor being a serial killer.  I was hoping he'd be wrong about that, and I wasn't disappointed.

 

Share this post


Link to post

I am reading the non fiction book Radium Girls by Kate Moore. The subject matter is fascinating ( women during WWI who painted dials with radium) but the writing isn’t the greatest. I will still finish because I want to find out the endings to these poor women.

  • Like 4
  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post

I just finished Jeffrey Archer's latest book, Hidden in Plain Sight, which is his second book featuring Detective William Warwick, the character created by his author character Harry Clifton from his "Clifton Chronicles" series.  I enjoyed it, although my complaint about Archer's books lately is that with both the Clifton Chronicles and this Warwick series, the books are clearly intended to be part of a series and I feel like there isn't the closure and satisfaction of a standalone novel.  Some of his recent books have literally ended on a cliffhanger, which is frustrating because then there is a year long wait to find out what happened.  And with this latest Warwick book, we literally are dropped into the middle of the story.  I had forgotten everything that happened in the first Warwick book and I couldn't even remember who some of the characters were.  

I was happy to see that Archer has also just released a short story compendium, The Short, the Long and the Tall and am picking up from the library this week.  But then I found out it's just a repackaging of some of his previously published short stories, but with illustrations.  I'm sure I won't remember the stories since it's probably been 30 years since I read some of them, so I hope to enjoy it as new.

Based on a recommendation upthread, I'm currently reading Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty, which is the book that was characterised as "Agatha Christie in space".  I'm not far in but it's already riveting.

Edited by blackwing

Share this post


Link to post

A week-ago finished Yuval Harari "SAPIENS: A Brief History of Humankind". It was a really easy read, the author really had in mind an average layperson while writing it. Some of the things he wrote we already discussed in school/university, other things were quite interesting to read (like that majority of our constructs, like money, political factions etc. are just only the products of our imagination). 

Now, I'm re-reading Herodotus "Historiae". And... I don't know, now I know, why I did not remember much of what I've read from this book many years ago, because the ancient historian's writing is all over the place (from one thing to the other, and then back again). I finished the first chapter, and I think I have to re-read it again, read the footnotes and in my own personal notebook write down the sequence from A to Z of the events, which he depicts, in order to fully understand what has happened. Also, what's interesting, that he attributes much of the stuff that has happened to the will of the Gods, just like Homerus.

Edited by Rushmoras
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

1 hour ago, Rushmoras said:

A week-ago finished Yuval Harari "SAPIENS: A Brief History of Humankind". It was a really easy read, the author really had in mind an average layperson while writing it. Some of the things he wrote we already discussed in school/university, other things were quite interesting to read (like that majority of our constructs, like money, political factions etc. are just only the products of our imagination). 

I suggested this book to one of my kids who was looking for a Christmas present for dad.  I haven't read it but have heard such good things about it.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

I have yet to get to Winds of War because I’ve had so much to do in the kitchen. Even without having a group eating it, it takes so much time to shop, bake pies and get ready for Thanksgiving. A local Fresh Market offered it all done to be picked up, but my Covid partner wouldn’t go for that. Grrr.  So I belong to a book club and for it I read The Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewell. It was a bit to learn who the characters were as it jumped a lot between past and present, but once it got going it was interesting with some twists at the end. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
7 minutes ago, Spartan Girl said:

Reading Obama’s A Promised Land and ohhhh I wish I could get into specifics but it’s great so far.

That is high on my list -- I'm planning on buying the hardcover soon.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, Spartan Girl said:

Reading Obama’s A Promised Land and ohhhh I wish I could get into specifics but it’s great so far.

I’m #10 on the wait list. Can’t wait!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Terry Pratchett's Guards! Guards! I've been meaning to reread the guards books for a while, because I'm writing something in the fantasy police vein. While I read them a dozen times each way back in the 90s and 2000s, it's best to check in now. Make sure I'm not accidentally doing something he made fun of. Deliberately is fine, of course. I can always choose to lean into a bit of Pratchett. But I expect my hypothetical readers to be aware of the difference.

I actually stopped reading Pratchett a few years ago. I'd read him so much I'd got sick of his writing style. Tolkien is in the same boat. But now is the time.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

I just read Sidney Sheldon's The Other Side of Midnight.  I had read it way back when in the late 80s when I devoured a bunch of his books. I had vaguely remembered I enjoyed his stuff, but the details why are hazy. Not sure why I decided to re-read this, but I did and it was hella entertaining.  Probably one of the best books in recent memory that I read that showcases a perfectly executed and rather diabolical revenge plot. 

  • Like 3
  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post
1 hour ago, dubbel zout said:

Sidney Sheldon is an excellent trashy-book writer. I write this with greatest respect.

Indeed.  Well-written trash can be a thing of beauty, and he was among the very best at that.  I've never read anything of his which wasn't very entertaining.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post

Last evening I finished the third book of the three book "Helen" series by Preston & Child (the third book is entitled Two Graves). More of an action thriller series than any sort of mystery but it was amazingly inventive and moved along very, very quickly with lots of interesting characters. Somewhat gruesome in parts (so not for those averse to gory murders or hand-to-hand combat) and there was a bit of repetition in the descriptive passages but I would still recommend if you are looking for something entirely escapist in our too real times.

Share this post


Link to post
9 hours ago, DearEvette said:

I just read Sidney Sheldon's The Other Side of Midnight.  I had read it way back when in the late 80s when I devoured a bunch of his books. I had vaguely remembered I enjoyed his stuff, but the details why are hazy. Not sure why I decided to re-read this, but I did and it was hella entertaining.  Probably one of the best books in recent memory that I read that showcases a perfectly executed and rather diabolical revenge plot. 

Oh lord, I DEVOURED all his books! I think my first one was Rage of Angels. And isn't Memories of Midnight the sequel to The Other Side of Midnight? The Naked Face, Master of the Game...

Edited by GHScorpiosRule
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

My strongest memories of his stuff is The Master of The Game which I remember had a really strong matriarch figure as a central character and the book I have next on deck, If Tomorrow Comes, which was about a female burglar and that I recall was probably along the more light-hearted of his books.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post

I’m starting The Wedding Party by Jasmine Guillory.  I have been really enjoying her Wedding Date series of books.  This one is a hate to love story.   

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

About half way into A Ladder to the Sky by John Boyne. I have mixed feelings about this book.

Earlier this year I read his book The Heart's Invisible Furies, which has been my favorite book of 2020.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

I picked up A Promised Land at the bookstore yesterday.  I'll start it as soon as I've finished my library books, so sometime this week.  

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
4 hours ago, tres bien said:

About half way into A Ladder to the Sky by John Boyne. I have mixed feelings about this book.

Earlier this year I read his book The Heart's Invisible Furies, which has been my favorite book of 2020.

I love, love, love Heart's Invisible Furies. Ladder to the Sky was an interesting read, almost like a train wreck you couldn't turn away from. Probably the most horrible protagonist I've ever come across. 

  • Useful 1
  • Sad 1

Share this post


Link to post

Just finished: The Girl in the Mirror by Rose Carlyle, about identical (mirror image) twins and their inheritance, which gets left in full to the first sibling who produces a legitimate heir. My only real complaint was that the pacing felt a little off--long stretches devoted to things that didn't seem important while scenes I wanted to spend more time with were rushed through, and I thought the flashbacks could have been woven in a little more neatly. But overall found it a very gripping story until the last page. Some reviews I read thought there was too much boat jargon (a good portion of the book takes place on a yacht), but as somebody with zero sailing experience it didn't bother me. I was always able to follow what was happening.

Next up: The Book of Lost Friends by Lisa Wingate.

  • Useful 1

Share this post


Link to post
On 11/28/2020 at 9:28 AM, Luckylyn said:

I’m starting The Wedding Party by Jasmine Guillory.  I have been really enjoying her Wedding Date series of books.  This one is a hate to love story.   

I just blew through all her books this week...really enjoy her writing style. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

The Ravens by Kass Morgan and Danielle Page. I was excited when I saw this. A YA sorority of witches! And it wasn't bad by any means. But maybe I should have expected this since Morgan wrote The 100 series that became the CW show, but...it felt like a Charmed reboot. I wanted it to be darker, and while the plot did in retrospect become quite dark, the treatment of it was not. I don't know if that makes sense to anyone. It was like "OH MY GOD THIS HORRIBLE THING HAPPENED...let me redo my makeup and put on my pretty dress and angst over my boyfriend!"  

 

Share this post


Link to post

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...

Customize font-size