Thursday, January 11, 2018

Review: Chrisp's True Crime Miscellaney

A fun book of bits and bobs all related to true crime. From charts of Victorian Slang to crime related acronyms and bits on killers from Bundy to Berkowicz -- just lots of interesting facts and drawings and whatnot.  

Not substantive but a quick, interesting slice of true crime.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Review: Field of Prey by John Sanford

Lucas Davenport is called into the case of the Black Hole Killer after lovers out parking on a rural property discover a cistern full of bodies and bones.  He and local cop, Detective Madsen, find it very complex with a lot of confusing elements.  A nice intense mystery and thriller with a VERY dark killer and a lot of violence.  One of the things I like the most is that he ties up all the subplots too (a pet peeve I have with some authors).

I like complex stories that are engaging and keep you guessing and Sanford is so good at that and this is no exception

I love this series and it has been a long time, so it was great re-visiting the series.


Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Post Holiday Recovery

I had a really enjoyable holiday season this year.  Read FOUR Christmas mysteries (in order of favorite to least favorite):

The Mistletoe Mystery by PD James
The Christmas Mystery - James Patterson with Richard DiLallo
Mrs. Jeffries and the Mistletoe Mix-Up by Emily Brightwell
Christmas with the Abominal Snowman by TE Scott

Absolutely loved the Doctor Who and Call the Midwife Christmas Specials

Went down to my friend Crystal's on Christmas where we had a lovely time.

several lunches, breakfast's coffees with friends.  AND got a beautiful crocheted afghan from Crystal

Then there were the not-so great moments.  Pam had a minor stroke which she is recovering from so posts will likely be spotty but we are all behind her!

My friend Eryn's Dad passed away

then other friends had contractor issues, martial issues and husband medical scare.  yet we are all plugging away and thankful for each other's support

So now we have a new year and I am hoping for more regular posting here and on Goodreads.

Time just goes so fast. Sigh.

Next up is mom's move to Abingdon later this month - man I hope that goes well...

So I hope everyone is doing well and looking forward to a great 2018!


Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Guest Blogger: Alice Duncan


To help welcome 2018 on a jolly note, here’s the Gnu Song:

As for 2017, I’m glad to see its hind end. It was a rough year for a lot of folks, including me. My best friend died and so did most of my household appliances, computers, etc.; and the various hounds required repairs of their own, so the stupid year was expensive as well as icky. As for my physical condition, it continues to pain me, but I’m more or less healthy. The surgery I had in 2017 was the least painful I’ve ever experienced. I never anticipated that I’d ever compose a sentence like that one. Sigh. Hoping for a better year in 2018 for ALL OF US!

Now for a little catch-up. First of all, thanks to everyone who downloaded HUNGRY SPIRITS when it was on sale for 99 cents. I appreciate all the downloads, and I’d appreciate reviews on Amazon or Barnes and Noble, too, if you feel so inclined. The winners of my November contest, whom I failed to acknowledge in December, are as follows:

Shirley Malatino won a copy of THANKSGIVING ANGELS
Julianne Sparks won a copy of PECOS VALLEY REVIVAL
Edward Washington won a copy of HIGH SPIRITS
Margaret (Lynn) Lind won a copy of SIERRA RANSOM

I will attempt to get your books sent out the first week in January, everyone!

Now for December’s contest:

Carolyn Booth and Jackie Stieghorse each won a copy of UNSETTLED SPIRITS
Vickie Shaw and Debra Guyette each won a copy of BRUISED SPIRITS

Congrats! I’ll attempt to get these books, too, sent in the coming week.

Okay, so what else is new? Um . . . not a whole lot, actually. I finished my next Daisy book and sent it to the publisher, but I have no idea when SPIRITS UNEARTHED will be published. Now I have to write SHAKEN SPIRITS. Whoopee. Can you tell how excited I am about writing book after book and having so very little to show for it? Well, I sure am.

However, now is not the time to whine. It’s the time to announce January’s contest! Let me see . . . what should I give away at the end of January? How about a few more hardbacks? At the end of January, I’ll have Bam-Bam, my winner-picking wiener dog, pick two winners of GENTEEL SPIRITS and two winners of THANKSGIVING ANGELS! I’m fond of both of those books, although, thanks to my brilliant idea of having Daisy and Sam show up in Mercy Allcutt’s book (THANKSGIVING ANGELS), I can’t get Daisy and Sam married until after Thanksgiving of 1926. Sometimes I wonder where (and why) my wits go begging. Oh, well.

Here’s a note about postage and my monthly contests. I love giving my work to people; however, I found out quite by accident a few months ago that sending books to Great Britain, Australia, and other countries outside the United States is beyond my monetary capability. If a resident of a nation other than the United States has an e-reader, I’ll happily supply that person with an e-book. If a person doesn’t have an e-reader and still likes to read book-books, he or she is on his or her own. I’m sorry, but what I laughingly call my writing career hasn’t made me wealthy yet. And it probably won’t, but let’s not get in to that because it always depresses me. So. That’s that.

If you’d like to enter January’s contest, just send me an email ( and give me your name and home address. If you’d like to be added to my mailing list, you may do so on my web site ( or email me (you won’t be smothered in e-mails, because I only write one blog a month, and that’s an effort). If you’d like to be friends on Facebook, visit my page at

Thank you!

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Review: The Secrets of my Life by Caitlyn Jenner

The story of Caitlyn Jenner's story of gender dysphoria and transition from Olympic Medalist, Bruce to her authentic self.Due to Bruce's celebrity, we watched from the POV of paparazzis and rumors for years until she "came out" with Diane Sawyer and Vanity Fair.  Then of course, we had two seasons of I am Cait where she tried to tell her story and learn lessons along the way.  It is a very personal book.  I am not sure how well she explains her issues with gender overall, but she tries to be honest and share her pain and fears and relief and growth.  The main point being to see her for the person she is.  I enjoyed the read but felt like a lot of others' pain might have been glossed over a bit but I think we need to read the story to understand a life much more complicated than we thought.

I remember the Wheaties box and the BIG DEAL of Bruce Jenner breaking the record and all of that -- I was a kid.  It is very interesting and sad to see how conflicted and unhappy he was.  You never know what goes on behind closed doors....


Friday, December 15, 2017

Review: The Road to Jonestown - Jeff Guinn

Jim Jones and the Jonestown suicides remain one of the most horrific cult moments of all time.  I was just a kid at the time and was so horrified by the whole thing.

This book tells the story of Jim Jones from his childhood to the formation of the Peoples Temple in Indiana where it was a positive force for change in race relations and care of the needy.  Then of course, over the years, as it grew, Jones became more and more erratic and unstable.  It shows the progression of the insanity that would culminate in the deaths of 918 people.

This is the best book I have read on the subject and makes the people and their choices more understandable of a terrible story that will hopefully never happen again.

The book is well researched and written.  In fact, almost 20% of the book is end notes.


Monday, December 11, 2017

Review: The Man from the Train by Bill James and Rachel McCarthy James

This was a fascinating book.  Between 1898 and 1912 there were quite a lot of axe murders of entire families throughout the US.  I never knew how many!  The most famous likely being Villisca.  The authors sort through the historical records and discuss the different cases, including if others were convicted of the crimes (many times) and executed.  The compare similarities in methods and signatures of the crimes.  They give opinions of which were connected crimes vs. those that were not - including those of the New Orleans Axe murderer.  It is a fascinating read and they clearly did a huge amount of research on the crimes.  It shocked me how many axe murders there were during the period.  It was shocking.  Of note -- Lizzie Borden was not mentioned. LOL

They even propose who they thought the killer was and make a case.  Of course, we'll never know for sure, but it was a very interesting book.


Review: Chrisp's True Crime Miscellaney

A fun book of bits and bobs all related to true crime. From charts of Victorian Slang to crime related acronyms and bits on killers fro...