About Me and My Blog and Amazon Store

My photo
Langley, BC, Canada
I love to read. I love books. I like to talk about books and recommend them. I read everything including cereal boxes and junk mail! I heard once that if you're not reading at least 3 books at a time you're not reading enough! This blog will keep track of the books I've read and whether or not I liked them. It will be a little bit of everything from Christian fiction to Science fiction and fantasy. Feel free to participate by suggesting books to review and giving your comments. Occasionally I am given free books by Publishers in exchange for a review. I am not told how to review them or compensated in any way for the review.

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Shadows in the Street by Susan Hill

This novel was my first experience of reading on my new Kindle. For the most part I really enjoyed the experience of reading on the Kindle. The only thing I really missed was being able to tell how much of the book I had left. There is a tracker device at the bottom that tells the percentage of the book read but I like being able to see the pages. Other than that, reading on a Kindle is actually somewhat better than having a book in your hands. For instance when you click on the book to read you are taken to the exact same spot you ended the last time; no more fumbling around trying to remember which page you’re on. (that’s usually what happens to me because I tend to lose bookmarks).

Now onto reviewing the actual story. Susan Hill is one of the many authors whose new books I wait for eagerly. I’m enjoying her Simon Serrailler series of which this is the latest one. Even though Simon is the main character it is definitely an ensemble cast and each player is given a story line which mingles with the others to create a rich and full bodied tale.

This book is set in a small British town where Simon is a detective on the police force. Someone is murdering the town’s prostitutes and he is called back from holiday to help out with the investigation. The first characters we are introduced to are a couple of the “working women” who will be some of the main characters of the novel. We are a given a glimpse into their less than ideal lives but we are also given a glimpse into the efforts they are making to clean up their lives and become “normal”.

Juxtaposed on that scene is another setting which is the Anglican church of the town. There are shadows here as well. Light and dark are definite themes in this novel. But the lightness and darkness often show up in unexpected places

Loss and how people deal with loss is another main theme of the novel. Many of the characters are dealing wth the loss of loved ones, others are dealing with the loss of what they thought would be their normal lives.

As a main character in the series, Simon seems to play a smaller part in this book. He’s a bit moody and introspective and I’m interested to see how Susan Hill develops his character in subsequent stories as he seems a bit stalled now.

The ending is unexpected, I hadn’t figured out ‘who did it” by the end. But I thoroughly enjoyed following the clues and getting to know the characters better. I’m looking forward to her next book.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Kindle Review

My kind and generous sister got me a Kindle for Christmas. Because they were oversold in Canada it wasn’t available at Christmas time so I just received it a couple of weeks ago when she was in town for a visit.

So far I love almost everything about it. I like that it’s lighter than most paperbacks I read so carrying it around with me is easy. I also like that I don’t have to wait for a favourite author to be published in paperback before I can read a book (I tend not to buy hard cover books very often). It came with a cool cover that has a built in light. It’s easy to read and navigate. One feature I really like is that the Kindle store provides free samples of books so you can read several pages to see if it’s one you really want. You can make notes and highlight just like in a “real” book. And another bonus to the e-reading world is that you also see which sections other readers have highlighted.

Another feature I discovered that I haven’t tried yet is that you can download mp3 files and listen to music while you read! How cool is that?

There are only a couple of things that I’m not happy with at the moment. One is the battery life. It doesn’t seem to stay charged as long as the information says it will. And although there is a battery icon it doesn’t seem to move much so I’m getting critical battery failures without any warning. And it was a surprise to me (although I guess it shouldn’t have been )that the books are charged in US dollars. Which could be a problem when the dollar goes down again. However there is a good selection of free and .99 cent books so I don’t really like I will ever be without reading material.

All in all I’m really enjoying it and will just have to remember to charge it up more often. Thanks, Maureen, it is a great gift!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Fatal Judgment by Irene Hannon

Jake Taylor is a US Marshall back from a tour of duty in Iraq. Just as he is settling in to his new job he is assigned to protect a Federal Judge whose sister has just been murdered. It turns out that he has history with this Judge and he is not looking forward to meeting up with her again. It also turns out that his previous opinion of her may be based on faulty information.

This story is Christian fiction at its best. It’s a conspiracy theory based mystery with more than hint of romance and a lot of suspense. It bodes well for the series called Guardians of Justice.

If you like Christian fiction then you will want to check out this book.