books, stats, The pile, week in books

The Week In Books: August 7 – August 13

Slightly rejigged posting schedule this week – if you’re looking for this week’s BotW post, click here to read about Derek Farrell’s Death of a Devil (or here for my interview with him) but normal service will resume tomorrow for Recommendsday.

Anyway, quieter week of reading last week, but I was quite busy in real life (I know, what a pain) and that got in the way.  We’ve got some building work coming up at home, so I fear this week may be quieter too, but I’m telling myself that a bit less reading time is worth it to have the work done at home…

Read:

Death of a Devil by Derek Farrell

Motor Mouth by Janet Evanovich

Blue Flame by Jill Shalvis

One Snowy Night by Jill Shalvis

Rescuing Dr McAllister by Sarah Morgan

Started:

The Adventuress by Tasha Alexander

The Mothers by Brit Bennett

Still reading:

The Greedy Queen by Annie Gray

Wise Children by Angela Carter

I was really quite well behaved this week – and didn’t buy anything. A miracle has occurred.  And as the books are about to be packed into boxes, I’m hoping I can resist the urge to buy more until I have an actual bookshelf to put them on again.  Of course that doesn’t help with my ebook buying problem, but you know, baby steps!

American imports, Book of the Week, romance

Book of the Week: Match Me If You Can

If you looked at what I read last week (and the week before) you’ll have noticed that I’ve been on a massive Susan Elizabeth Phillips kick and so it’ll be no surprise to you that this week’s BotW is one of them.  It took a quite a while to pick out which one was my favourite, but in the end I plumped for Match Me If You Can.

Cover of Match Me If You Can
This cover is a little bit retro, but don’t let that put you off.
Annabelle is a matchmaker.  Or at least she wants to be a matchmaker.  She’s taken over her grandmother’s old business and rebranded it to move it away from OAPs towards over achievers.  Now all she needs is a suitably overachieving client to find a match for to make her name.  Heath Champion has worked his way up to turn himself into a sports agent known as the Python.  Annabelle has decided that finding him a wife is going to be the client that makes her name.  It doesn’t matter that he’s already got a contract with Chicago’s top matchmaker, Annabelle is sure that she can do better…

All of the Susan Elizabeth Phillips books that I read last week were from her Chicago Stars series, which centres around a (fictional) American football franchise.  I don’t read a lot of sports romances, partly because they’re mostly about American sports and secondly because they often feature unreconstructed Alpha heros, which are not always my thing.   The difference with these is that all the women are strong, capable, professionally competent and not sitting around waiting to be rescued by the big old man.  In this, Annabelle is struggling to get her business off the ground at the start – but not because she’s incompetant, she’s just trying to break into the market.  She’s got a plan and she’s executing it.  She’s also got an awful family of overachievers trying to persuade her to do their bidding rather than what she wants to do – but she’s sticking to her guns.

In fact, the only bit of the book that didn’t work for me, was late on and revolved around her family – and a lack of resolution of the issues/recognition of how she felt from the hero – but that was a minor blip in a sparky, fun romance which rattles along.  This also has some appearances from previous couples in the series, which is always nice if you enjoyed reading about their romances and sets up the next book in the series (which I had actually read first!).  With a Phillips book, there’s always a secondary romance going on as well – and this one was a bit different to the usual.  I wasn’t sure that I was going to like it at first, but by the end, I was totally won over.

I’ve read four Chicago Stars books in less than a week – which suited me perfectly: satisfying romances, interesting characters that are linked but definitely not the same plots with different names, a bit of humour and not too much angst.  Or at least not unrelenting angst.  The angstiest of the four was Dream a Little Dream – and even that won me over, despite my dislike of traumatised widows and small children.*

Several of the Chicago Stars books are on offer on Kindle at the moment – including the latest in the series First Star I See Tonight for £1.99, which is much nuts and far more fun than you’d expect for a book which includes Middle Eastern Princesses in its blurb!  Match Me If You can is a reasonable £2.49 on Kindle or under £3 if you want a second hand copy of the book from Amazon or you could try Natural Born Charmer – which started me off on this kick last week – for the same prices.  Any of these is well worth a look if you want to dip your toe into this sort of book.

*I often find them to be aiming for winsome, but actually irritating plot moppets.

books, stats, The pile, week in books

The Week In Books: July 31 – August 6

Check it out: I finished one of the long runners this week!  My still reading list is reducing.  It’s the little things you know.  Anyway, a good week of reading, dominated by one author.  And to be honest, I would have bought more Susan Elizabeth Philips to read, if I wasn’t on a ActualBook buying ban (because we’ve got building work due to happen at the house and everything has to be packed up) and more of the Kindle editions were cheaper…

Read:

The Twelve Clues of Christmas by Rhys Bowen

Kick by Paula Byrne

Dream a Little Dream by Susan Elizabeth Philips

Match Me If You Can by Susan Elizabeth Philips

First Star I See Tonight by Susan Elizabeth Philips

The Girl Who Tweeted Wolf by Nick Bryan

Lord of the Wings by Donna Andrew

Started:

Motor Mouth by Janet Evanovich

Blue Flame by Jill Shalvis

Still reading:

The Greedy Queen by Annie Gray

Wise Children by Angela Carter

Two ebooks bought – First Star I See Tonight as part of the SEP binge and then These Old Shades on ebook because it was only 99p and I wanted to have an e-copy as well as a paper one.  So that doesn’t count really.  And as I’ve already read First Star… that means a net addition to the to-read pile of… zero.  So I’m counting that as a success.

Book of the Week, cozy crime, detective

Book of the Week: Picture Miss Seeton

A shorter BotW post this week, because you’ve already had three great books from my reading last week in my Summer Reading post! But I finished Picture Miss Seeton on Sunday afternoon and wanted to give it a mention.

I do love a stylised cover. As long as you can get a matching set!

A retired art teacher, Miss Seeton witnesses a murder after leaving a performance of Carmen. Despite only getting a shadowy view of the killer, she manages to draw a picture that enables Scotland Yard to identify him. Soon she’s facing peril in the rural cottage she’s just inherited, where the villagers are also taking an interest in the new arrival.

This really scratched my itch for cozy crime with added humour. Miss Seeton is a wonderful send up of elderly lady detectives. She’s impossible to shock, utterly unflappable and practises yoga in her free time. She’s always one step ahead of the police and always manages to be in the right place at the right time to pick up the vital clue. I found the switching points of view occasionally a bit jarring or confusing, but I forgave it because I was having so much fun reading about Miss S’s adventures. It was a perfect book to read while recovering from nightshifts.

I’m fairly sure I’ve seen some Miss Seeton’s at the library (or maybe in the discount bookshop) so I suspect I may be reading more of her adventures in the near future. Picture Miss Seeton is available on Kindle and Kobo and should be available (probably to order) from all the usual sources.

Happy Reading!

books, stats

July Stats

New books read this month: 32*

Books from the to-read pile: 9

Ebooks read: 18

Books from the Library book pile: 1

Non-fiction books: 3 (although I have several on the go)

#ReadHarder categories completed: 0

Most read author: Susan M Boyer (2 Liz Talbot books

Books read this year: 214

Books bought: 15- all ebooks bar 3

Books on the Goodreads to-read shelf:  534 (I don’t have copies of all of these!)

Read Harder Bingo card
The proper bingo card is back! Hurrah! And I’m more than halfway through the categories! Double Hurrah!

*Includes some short stories/novellas/comics (9 this month)

 

books, stats, The pile, week in books

The Week In Books: July 24 – July 30

Nightshift week and lots of good books read.  You’ll have seen some of them already in my Holiday Reading post too. I started a couple that I didn’t have the brain power to cope with with nightshift brain, but that always happens. But nights are over now and I’m attempting to get my body clock back to some semblance of normal with the help of early nights and more books!

Read:

A Quiet Life in the Country by T E Kinsey

Big Sexy Love by Kirsty Greenwood

Duke With Benefits by Manda Collins

One Kiss in Greece by Kirsty Greenwood

Modern Lovers by Emma Straub

How to Stop Time by Matt Haig

Natural Born Charmer by Susan Elizabeth Philips

Picture Miss Seeton by Heron Carvic

Started:

Wise Children by Angela Carter

The Girl Who Tweeted Wolf by Nick Bryan

The Twelve Clues of Christmas by Rhys Bowen

Still reading:

Kick by Paula Byrne

The Greedy Queen by Annie Gray

I’m afraid some impulse purchasing took place on the nightshifts. But I think that’s entirely understandable really.  I mean it’s hard to resist the urge to purchase at 3am…

books, stats, The pile, week in books

The Week In Books: July 17 – July 23

By the time you read this, my nightshifts will be underway.  I’ll probably just be waking up as this is posted – or at least I hope I’ll just be waking up if I’m going to have got enough sleep for me to be able to stay up all night again. This week has been really quite busy – and my brain has been quite frazzled – so there’s a lot of comics and graphic novels on this list.   This may continue next week because of nightshift brain, which as usual, means expect to see a lot of cozy crime and romance on this list next week!

Read:

The Summage Solution by G L Carriger

Simple Irresistable by Jill Shalvis

Reel History: The World According to the Movies by Alex von Tunzelmann

Bitch Planet Vol 2: President Bitch by Kelly Sue DeConnick et al

Rivers of London: Detective Stories 2 by Ben Aaronovitch et al

Bitch Planet Triple Feature 1 by Kelly Sue DeConnick et al

Bitch Planet Triple Feature 2 by Che Grayson

Room For Doubt by Nancy Cole Silverman

Started:

A Quiet Life in the Country by T E Kinsey

Still reading:

Kick by Paula Byrne

The Greedy Queen by Annie Gray

Modern Lovers by Emma Straub

Two ebooks bought – both on deals and part of series that I’m following or want to read more of to work out if I like them or not!