Page Turners

Here is a list of books that have been shared on KMA's Page Turners with the Shenandoah Public Library.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen - is one of the best books I've read lately. It is a southern story sprinkled in fairy dust. Josey Cirrini is no southern belle and her mother won't let her forget it. She still lives at home trying to make amends for the horrible child she was. Things start to change for Josey when she finds Della Lee Baker living in her closet one morning. Della Lee pushes Josey to leave her protective shell and start to live a little. That is how Josey meets Chloe Finley who needs a friend in the worst way. Now if Josey can work up enough courage to do more than just stare at her cute mailman life will really be looking up. Of course, how long will Della Lee be living in her closet? That can't go on for much longer.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

THE ABYSSINIAN PROOF—Jenny White—A fast-reading, fun detective story with hero Kamil Pasha making his second appearance, but the first in the Shenandoah Library. Set in Turkey detective (called inspector there) solves a puzzle of antiquities being stolen and shipped abroad, especially a stolen reliquary overseen by friends which would contain the proof of God. As the story unfolds to a delicious climax, the author paints scenes of life in modern-day Turkey, gently explaining similarities and differences. Ms. White’s ‘day job’ is as “professor of anthropology at Boston University and the author of numerous nonfiction works on Turkish society and polities”. Her storehouse of information makes her tale incredibly readable.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

THE DEVIL'S BONES—Jefferson Bass--(actually Dr. Bill Bass and Jon Jefferson). Three forensic mysteries rolled into one quick paced book told in the 'ah shucks' Dr. Bill Brockton style. Brockton, portrayed as the founder of 'The Body Farm', which co-author Bill Bass is, develops experiments burning cadavers in automobiles to determine how the body decomposes in such a fire, and what happens to their bones. That exercise to determine if a recently deceased-by-fire died the way described by her suspect husband. That excitement is set aside occasionally for Brockton to investigate a questionable crematory operation and all the while he's being perused by a former colleague hell bent on Brockton's death. Surrounded in these quests by his good friends from previous novels, Brockton details a huge wealth of forensic information, as well as some plain fun stuff...right to the end when, alone, he faces his enemy.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

THE LAZARUS PROJECT—Aleksandar Hemon—A quite amazing book! Written by a Yugoslavian who visited the U.S. In 1992 and due to circumstances was never able to return, Hemon a tells tale of multiple, but two directly intertwined people. One is Lazarus Averbuch, a 19 year old who was killed at the home of and by the Chief of the Chicago Police under circumstances never fully explained, the other a young, foreign born author Brik, keen on attempting to resolve the Lazarus murder. The attempt takes Brick, together with a photographer to Eastern Europe where they attempt to gain understanding of Averbuch's background and family roots; but wind up spending more time Brik trying to understand himself and the cultural crisis he is in. Hemon's amazing command of the English Language, alone, is reason enough to read the book; which together with his observations of two cultures make it difficult to put down once started. The book is dark but carries much 'energy and wit'.

STEP ON A CRACK—James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge—Patterson and Ledwidge introduce a new hero, Detective Michael Bennett, NYPD, and an Irish hero to be reckoned with, one might hope, in future novels. Bennett, with wife dying of cancer, the father of ten adopted children ,with Christmas fast approaching, is dramatically summoned to St. Patricks, the site of the funeral of the first lady. The problem is that the funeral became the site of a mass kidnapping of the mourners, especially the 'rich and famous. The novel rushes between the two stories (with various sub-stories on various characters), Bennett as a professional, Bennett as husband/father. Amazingly, the characters are reasonably believable and the book a great, fun, very fast read.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Go on a Shelfari! -

So, after a long absence from this blog, I'm back! In the interval, I've read quite a few books, including D.J. MacHale's Pendragon teen time-travel adventure series, Anne McCaffrey's Acorna and Acorna's Children series of science fiction/fantasy novels about a unicorn-girl, Horizontal World: Growing Up Wild in the Middle of Nowhere - an autobiography on growing up in North Dakota by Debra Marquart, and Winter Rose by Patricia McKillip, a retelling of the classic fairy-tale of Tam Lin. All were worth the time to read, although I didn't fall in love with any of them.

I've also found a great way to share the books I've been reading and what I thought of them with other bibliophiles. The website is a social networking site where you can fill a bookshelf with books you've loved or hated, rate books, review books, ask for recommendations and more. I update my shelf at least a couple of times a week. If you want to see what other books I've read and loved, you can browse my shelf at, or you can get signed up for your own shelf and join in the book-loving fun!

Monday, July 07, 2008

Deadly Gamble - by Connie Shelton is the first in the Charlie Parker mystery series. While it is a typical first book I enjoyed this lighter mystery set in Albuquerque, which was a quick read. Charlie Parker works with her brother in their small PI firm. However, Charlie is the accountant, well, until her brother is on vacation and her former friend Stacy walks in needing help in a bad way. Feeling sorry for Stacy Charlie finds a watch Stacy has lost only to have the man who took it end up dead. Now Stacy is worried that she will be fingered as the murderer by the police and it is up to Charlie to track down the real killer.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

SAIL—James Patterson & Howard Roughan—I'd agree with the frequent mention of Amazon reviewers this a a good, suspenseful, beach or pool thriller; a fun summer evening read. Short on character development but long on new and vastly varying stressful situation from explosions to snakes the family Dunne struggles to survive. The dysfunctional Dunne family goes sailing, the hope of the physician mother to bring the family together and help resolve the problems of the druggie, the bulemic and growing problems of the 10 year old. Patterson and Roughan pull it off in summer reading style bringing the book to a convoluted and somewhat dissatisfying conclusion. As has been said, not much new—but it keeps you reading.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

THE APPEAL—John Grisham—Using a toxic waste issue in a small Mississippi town, Grisham focuses on the issue of election of judges rather than some form of appointment. His good guy are very good; his bad guys are very bad and there are few in-between. The appeal explores a range of interests which could benefit or be harmed by the election of one with a specific agenda, and the types of possible candidates who might become involved in the judicial election process. Throughout are stories of fictional but not unreasonable instances to substantiate the story. Reviews seem not really mixed, just pretty neutral. Good read but in many ways kind of unsatisfying. Better than many recent books, but not as good as his first efforts. Still no reason not to enjoy.