Sunday Talk ~ (Mostly) About Books

Hello my lovely friends! πŸ’•

I trust that this finds you and your loved ones healthy and safe!

This is my ‘pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps-before-the-couch-swallows-you-whole’ post. And there is a limit as to how many times one can re-watch a Hallmark movie!

Hubby has to go back to work tomorrow (part-time), so I took that as a sign to get ‘back to normal’…whatever that may be.

~~I thought long and hard if I should talk about the current events. I do feel that there is a long overdue change happening, but there are a lot of amazing people out there better qualified and educated on the subject than I am. So I leave it at that. I work on getting educated, but won’t lecture!

So, over the last couple of weeks…

🌺I made some collagesπŸ€“ They’re now adorning my booth at the local Antique Mall.

I love making these. I hope you enjoy them too! πŸ’œ

🌺 I took a few trips to Thrift Shops in the area.😎The bookshelves at the booth are replenished, and my TBR pile is growing.

And I found some yummy yarn. I think I’ll sharpen the knitting needles for a change. What to make? What to make? Well, since I was only able to get two skeins…scarf it is.

~~I did read a lot, and I must say -Soapbox moment coming! 🧐 – my talent to pick disappointing books is well developed. It seems to be the latest trend to write books without a conclusion, or with story-threads dangling. Or is it really just me? I’ve had quite a few books over the last couple of weeks that ended with a cliffhanger. And they were either not part of a series, or the next book picked up somewhere else without revisiting the prior storyline.
The only exception was the latest installment in Nancy Warren’s Vampire Knitting Series.


In the 10th book of this delightful series Lucy finds herself face-to-face with a High School friend, turned nemesis. They had a falling out over a boy (of course…it being High School and allΒ  😁). Only the visiting “friend”, Pamela, doesn’t seem to remember the feud, and acts suspiciously friendly. When she turns up dead, it’s up to Lucy, Rafe, and the other Vampires to bring the killer to justice. I truly enjoyed this well thought out story, and am looking forward to the next book, which will be released in September. πŸ’ƒπŸ»

~~If you follow me on Instagram you already know this 😊 You know that I was just a few days younger than I am now, when I found out that Agatha Christie wrote Romance Novels under the pseudonymΒ Mary Westmacott. I honestly had no idea!Β πŸ™ˆI’ll give it a whirl, and will report back.

~~Once in a while one has to stretch the legs. So I walked. I walked the dogs. I walked by myself. I walked with a friend. I’m afraid I’ll be about 5″ shorter when this is all over.
But it is Springtime, almost Summer. So beautiful things are happening in nature. 🌷We celebrated the Tulips, the first Roses, the Clematis. And on one of these excursions I discovered this beautiful tree in full bloom.
Some research showed that it’s aΒ Tulip Poplar,Β and I need one!

Isn’t it gorgeous? 😍

And with this I will let you get back to whatever you were doing! Thank you for reading πŸ’•

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Booktalk: Nancy Warren, Author

Hello my lovely friends πŸ’•

Today I’d like to introduce you to an author that raced through the ranks of my favorite writers, to take a firm spot among the Top5.
Nancy Warren* is the author of more that 60 novels, a three time finalist for the RITA award, and was honored by the Romantic Times Magazine. She creates very lively and likeable characters, and fast moving stories.

My first Nancy Warren book was ‘The Vampire Knitting Club‘. This is the first in a paranormal cozy, taking place in Oxford, England.

The Vampire Knitting Club: First in a Paranormal Cozy Mystery Series by [Nancy Warren]
In this first installment in a very entertaining series Lucy travels to Oxford to be with her Grandma, and keep busy in Granny’s yarn shop. Once there she finds the shop locked up tight, and is informed that Gran has passed on…or has she? There is a death certificate, and a will leaving the shop to Lucy. But Lucy also catches glimpses of Gran, and discovers a few hard to explain things going on in and around the shop. Including the fact that her beloved ancestor did not die of old age, she was murdered. Who would kill an adorable, kind Grandma?
Add a yummy detective, quite a few (non-scary) vampires, a cute cat, an abundance of yarns and cable sweaters, and you have a wonderful, lighthearted mystery.
And I’ve more good news – there are currently 9 books in this series. And the 10th one, ‘Garters and Gargoyles’, is being published June 10th, 2020. 😎

🌺Since I enjoyed those books so much I was delighted to discover a second series by Nancy Warren – The Great Witches Baking Show 

The Great Witches Baking Show: A culinary cozy mystery by [Nancy Warren]

In this paranormal cozy, Poppy Wilkinson is chosen to be a contestant on a very popular baking show. Not only would the title of ‘Best Baker’ be of help professionally, Poppy also hopes to find out more about her (witchy) origins on the setting of the show, ‘Broomwode Hall’.
When a contestant gets murdered on the set, Poppy and her new friends set out to find the culprit before the show is cancelled.

I thoroughly enjoyed the first two installment in a very promising series. I mean, delicious baked goods, witches, a beautiful estate in England’s countryside – what could be better. πŸ‘©πŸ»β€πŸ³

There are currently two books in this series. The third one ‘A Rolling Scone’ will be published on May 20th, 2020.

🌺Since I recently discovered my love for historical fiction, imagine my delight to find out that Nancy Warren wrote ‘Death of a Flapper’, a cozy mystery set in Paris in the 1920s.

Death of a Flapper: A 1920s Cozy Historical Mystery (Abigail Dixon Mysteries Book 1) by [Nancy Warren]

In her wonderful, light-hearted style Nancy Warren lets the reader accompany Abigail Dixon on her adventure of a lifetime.
As a reporter from Chicago, Abby arrives in Paris to write for the Woman’s page of a newspaper. Before she can publish her first article, she’s involved in a murder. With the help of her lovely and colorful roommate, a fashion designer, a fellow reporter (Ernest Hemingway πŸ€“yes, that Ernest) she hopes to clear her name before she loses her head (Pun intented  πŸ€¦πŸ»β€β™€οΈ). Yes, in the 1920s the Guillotine was a very real threat.

🌺Currently I’m enjoying a brand-new series by this author. I’m about half-way through The Vampire Book Club, and am enjoying it as much as all the other books by Nancy Warren.
The Vampire Book Club: A Paranormal Women's Fiction Cozy Mystery by [Nancy Warren]

In this book, Quinn Calahan, a middle-aged, divorced witch, banned to a small town in Ireland, finds herself in the middle of a murder mystery before she even unpacks her bags. And there are even vampires living in the beautiful castle overlooking the tiny town – again, the non-scary kind. πŸ§›πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ
As I write this, there is only one book out in this series, with the next two installments scheduled for release in July and October, respectively.

🌺Nancy Warren is also the writer of numerous romance novels. I’m sorry, but I can’t tell you anything about those, since I’m not a fan of that genre. But according to many reviews, those books are equally entertaining, and very well written.

Have you read any of these books? Did you enjoy them? Please let me know in the comments….I love a good ‘Booktalk’. 😎

Until next time πŸ’•

* I have no affiliation with this author or her publisher. This post is unsolicited.

Bookish Hodgepodge πŸ“š

Hello my lovely friends πŸ’•

Wanna talk books? I’m here for ya! 😊

I’m having reading time aplenty, and would love to share my findings and thoughts with you. And I would love to hear what you have to say!

1. Do you know the ‘Royal Spyness’ series by Rhys Bowen?
The narrative is Lady Georgiana, 35th in line to the throne of England. That’s quite far removed, so her life in the late 1920s/early 1930s isn’t always easy. But she manages quite well. These books are very entertaining, while giving us a glimpse into the past.

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One of my, if not the favorite comeback line, is from the book ‘Love and Death Among the Cheetahs’. It tells the story of Georgiana and Darcy’s honeymoon in Kenia. After stumbling across a murder victim, they are being interrogated by the police, and the following exchange occurs…

ba4a1bc2-8efd-4545-b40a-453b3274faf8Isn’t it fabulous? πŸ˜‚ I so wish we all had a comeback like this handy whenever someone comes at us sideways! πŸ˜‰

2. If you’re following me on Instagram you already know that I’m alphabetizing my library. In the process, I’m showing off some read-worthy books (alphabetized by author). I’m only on Day 4 – but this is what I have so far…

A is for Atherton (Nancy) – Author of the ‘Aunt Dimity Series’

B is for Bowen (Rhys) – You read about her above

C is for Cannell (Dorothy) – Author of the ‘Ellie Haskell Mysteries’, and numerous other      bestsellers

is for Davis (Fiona) – Author of  ‘The Masterpiece’, ‘The Dollhouse’, ‘The Chelsea Girls’, to name just a few. All these books are historicalnovels, set in iconic New York City buildings. Fiona Davis melds real life NY with fictional characters in a masterful way.

3. Show-and-Tell

Back in the good old days, aka the shopping days  πŸ˜, I came across this magnificent copy of ‘Grimm’s FairyTales’. Printed in 1945, with wonderful illustrations it’s the latest addition to my antique book collection.

 4. Coloring Page ~ Title: So many books, so little time πŸ€“

I’ve also been drawing again…here is my latest piece.
I plan to fill in the ‘spines’ with the names of my favorite books.

 Here it is all plain, waiting for you and your pencils! πŸ˜ƒ

 

That’s all for today. Thank you so much for reading!

Take good care of yourself  πŸ’• Be safe & stay healthy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

An Update…and A Booktalk

Hello my lovely friends πŸ’•

Well, this feels a bit awkward. It seems like it’s been ages since I sat down to share things with you. Mostly because I didn’t have anything to share. And just my daily routine would make for one boring read. 😏

The new year welcomed me into it’s fold with a nasty cold that lasted (seemingly) forever. When I finally came up for air – breathing without coughing is so underrated    – I was full of energy, planning a day out…and on the way fell down some steps and twisted my ankle. πŸ™ˆ So, back to the couch. I didn’t even give that thing time to miss me! πŸ˜‰ When I was finally able to limp around without too much pain, I managed to start on a new path – I snatched up a booth at the local Antique Mall. Yay me! πŸ˜ƒ More on that later.
Then another cold virus found me. Ugh! I haven’t been sick in ages…now this year I am the chosen host for quite a few nasty things. 🀧 It was a milder episode, so I’m not gonna complain (too much).

But, one good thing came out of all this couch-time. I had time to read! So much time for so many wonderful books.

Today I want to tell you about two books that really stood out from the masses.

Temple Secrets 

and

Gullah Secrets 

both by Susan Gabriel.*

They’re both fascinating  stories, taking place in Savannah, Georgio and southern South Carolina.

The Temple family has been collecting secrets of the ‘upper crust’ of Savannah for decades. Every tidbit recorded in diaries. Now these secrets are coming to light, they’re being published, one by one, in a daily paper.
This is the basis for the first book Temple Secrets. But there is so much more to this tale. The characters are fascinating, the family’s own secrets nothing to be proud of.
The story is woven so intricately that it’s hard to describe why it’s so wonderful without giving anything away.
All I can say is that these two books are some of the best I’ve ever read (definitely in the Top 5), and I’m jealous of everyone who hasn’t read them yet.

The second book in the two-part story is Gullah Secrets.

In this sequel the lovely women of the Temple family take us to their roots on a small island at the coast of South Carolina. Here the breathtaking ride continues, and….
well, I’m not gonna give away the ending.    You will have to see/read for yourself.

If you would like to learn more about the author, just click here
(Link will open in a new tab)

I usually read cozy murder mysteries. So these books were a big step away from my TBR list.
I’m now so glad I read them, but at first I was a bit hesitant. I didn’t know what to expect, what to wait for.
See, with a murder mystery it’s easy. You meet the characters, them someone – hopefully someone nasty and unlikeable- gets murdered, and you try to figure out who dunnit.
Well, that was, obviously, not going to happen here.
But the story pulls you in so fast that all you care about is how they cope with the obstacles life throws at them. You don’t wait for anything, you just go along for the ride.

*I honestly have no affiliation with the writer or any bookseller. I’m just so enchanted that I can’t stop gushing! 😍

Okay, I’m done! 😁 All I wanna say now is ‘Thanks for reading’. It’s good to be back.

I hope to see you again soon! πŸ’•

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