Flight Patterns by Karen White

October 24, 2016 by

index-2A family tragedy drives a wedge between two sisters and keeps them estranged for 10 years. But one sister, Georgia, is forced to return home, due to her job as an antiques expert. After a client seeks a price on a set of china, whose pattern Georgia is sure she has seen before, in the attic of her family’s house, her boss convinces her to drive back to her childhood home. With the story set in Apalachicola, Florida, the author focuses on how to mend broken ties within families, as well as the impact of childhood trauma on life as an adult. The novel is told in the different character’s perspectives, and switches between Georgia, her sister Maisy, and their mother, Birdy, who does not speak but instead sings softly, due to her mental instability. The chapters are prefaced with quotes about bees, as their grandfather is a beekeeper, who believes that wisdom can be gained from studying the patterns of the bees. The twist at the end turns conventional behavior upside down, and the reader is forced to consider the choices made by several of the characters. For fans of Jodi Picoult, and Kristin Hannah.

“The First Monday In May”

October 23, 2016 by

If your invitation got lost in the mail or you just didn’t have time to attend, here is your chance to get an inside look at the planning and the actual event:  the Metropolitan Museum of Art Gala 2015.0876964009652_p0_v1_s118x184.jpg The moving force behind this elaborate charity happening is Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue.  Andrew Bolton, head of the Costume Institute at the Met, curated this show:  “China Through The Looking Glass.”  These two creative individuals and a staff of hundreds of people put together the most successful show at the Costume Institute.  If you have any doubt how important this event is at the Met take note that the Met is closed only a few days each year.  One of those days is the first Monday in May.

If you want a glimpse of the big name celebrities who attended and, of course, what these glamorous women wore, this documentary does not disappoint.

What is probably more interesting is the discussion of fashion as art.  Wintour, of course, believes that fashion is art and the film provides ample proof in explanations of how each piece in the show demonstrates artistic craftsman and beauty.

For those interested in fashion, art, and the activities of the rich and famous this film is an interesting glimpse into their world.

Murder in Quebec

October 22, 2016 by

Louise Penny’s newest mystery, featuring former Chief of Homicide for the Surete du Quebec, is one of her best.  In “A Great Reckoning” the author continues to weave the story of Armand Gamache’s personal and professional life.  All the characters that appear in her previous novels, plus several new ones, all play a part in solving a murder at the Surete Academy.

After resigning as Chief of Homicide, Gamache has now assumed a new job as the commander of the academy that trains new officers for the Surete.  Gamache was responsible for uncovering and weeding out the corrupt officers and leadership at the Surete.  Now he is faced with doing the same at the Academy.

After firing many of the professors who were fostering militant attitudes among the new recruits, Gamache’s task is to redirect the focus of training for these young men and women.  To everyone’s surprise, he keeps on staff Serge Leduc and hires Michel Brebeuf.  Gamache has been gathering evidence of corruption against Leduc and needs only to verify his suspicions and have Leduc arrested.  Brebeuf, a disgraced former colleague, is someone Gamache feels the new recruits can learn from and profit from his mistakes.9781250022134_p0_v8_s118x184.jpg

Against this backdrop, Gamache now faces a murder investigation.  Serge Leduc has been murdered–one shot through his head.  The suspects mount up as Leduc’s past is revealed; those suspects include Gamache himself.

One of the key clues in the murder investigation is an old map that was uncovered in the walls of the bistro in Gamache’s home village of Three Pines.  How is the map connected to the murder and how and why was the map created are all key plot points in discovering who killed Leduc and why.

For old fans of Louise Penny and her cast of characters, “A Great Reckoning” is a pure delight.  I couldn’t put it down.  For new fans, you are in for a mystery-lover’s great read.

The Lovely Reckless

October 22, 2016 by

The Lovely Reckless by Kami Garcia (author of the best-selling Beautiful Creatures series) is a fast-paced novel. I found it to be a cross between Twilight, Romeo and Juliet, and the Fast and the Furious; it is just as cheesy as all three but in the best way.

The book is aboindex.jpgut Frankie, a teenage girl who is suffering from PTSD after witnessing the violent death of her boyfriend outside of a club. Frankie can’t remember key details from that night which could find her boyfriend’s killer which sends her into a spiral which results in a drunk driving arrest. Her mother, fed up with her antics, sends her to live with her undercover cop father in the bad part of town. Cue in Marco Leone, the bad boy street racer at Frankie’s new school who won’t stop pursuing Frankie and introduces her to a dangerous world of street racing.

This book, however cheesy it was, kept me smiling and intrigued for the entire book- I could not put it down! If you are looking for an exciting romance then this book is perfect for you!

Mrs. Reader Pants web site

October 20, 2016 by

Mrs. ReaderPantsI like to refer to the Mrs. Reader Pants web site to discover new releases of children’s books. Mrs. ReaderPants is an American school librarian living in China.  She has lesson plans and book reviews as well. This year she began a weekly release announcement of new children’s books published that she recommends. The list is not overly extensive or overwhelming. It is a good way to catch up on some new titles you may have missed. The list comes out on Tuesdays and you can subscribe to receive the weekly email.

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