The National Library for Children in Kyiv, Ukraine, is open and functioning as a place of refuge for children traumatized by the ongoing war. Recently, hundreds of books by award winning children’s author Shirley Hughes were donated by her son Ed Vulliamy to the library, which he knew would have made his mother extremely happy. And more of her books will be going to other children’s libraries in Ukraine. Lada Tsybulska is the library psychologist, and her philosophy is “a book is the best doctor for the soul”. The director Alla Gordiienko calls the library “a place for emotional shelter” for moms and their children. What a valuable use for a library…
Not the Ones Dead
Kate Shugak is a private investigator in an Alaskan Native village. When two small planes collide in the wilderness nearby, leaving all the passengers and pilots dead, she is hired by one of the pilot’s families. Their eighty-seven year old father is being blamed for the crash, and his two children want to clear his name. Kate takes on more than she bargained for though, when the Feds become involved and the term “domestic terrorism” is mentioned. With the aid of her partner and one hundred plus pound half wolf/ half dog Mutt, Kate sets out to prove exactly what happened. Dana Stabenow received an Edgar Award for her first novel in the Kate Shugak series, A Cold Day for Murder, and her novels are very engaging.
The Honeymoon Cottage
Yardley is a wedding planner in the town of Cemetery, not a very upbeat name for a honeymoon destination. When she lobbies to remove the name from every business in town, including her own, the town matriarch defends the use of her relative’s name, who established the town. Yardley is also pitted against her mother and aunt, her two roommates in a large Victorian house, where she also operates her business, Cemetery Weddings. They constantly criticize her to the point where she often questions her decisions. Enter a bride -to- be with a handsome brother, and you have the beginnings of a romance between him and Yardley. This was a light read, good for when you don’t want to wrangle something more serious. Recommended for romance fans…
Finlay Donovan Jumps the Gun
This title is number three in the Finlay Donovan series, which I realized after I had started reading it. Finlay Donovan, a writer/mom/sleuth needs to discover who is blackmailing Feliks Zhirov, a Russian mobster. It’s a quid pro quo, since at her request, he shut down a website for contract killers that had her ex-husband’s name on its list . Her pal Vero owes an Atlantic City loan shark thousands of dollars that she doesn’t have, so they are both in hot water. Together they drop out of sight and attend a citizens police academy, where Finlay is attracted to a hot cop who is teaching several courses. It’s your basic mystery romance, but I enjoyed it. However I would start with the first two books in the series; otherwise this title will be a bit confusing…
Good Dog, Bad Cop
Another offering by David Rosenfelt just hit the shelves, but this title is not about his lawyer character, Andy Carpenter. Instead it follows Corey Douglas, a retired cop turned private investigator and his partner, Simon Garfunkel, a retired K-9 police dog. Corey teams up with Laurie, Andy’s wife, to solve a cold case involving a fellow officer, Danny Avery, who was murdered several years earlier, while on duty. This series is a little less amusing than the Andy Carpenter cases, but it was still enjoyable.