It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #SundayPost #SundaySalon

 

The It’s Monday! What Are You Reading meme is hosted at BookDate

I’m also linking to The Sunday Post @ Caffeinated Reviewer

And the Sunday Salon @ ReaderBuzz

Life…

The kids go back to school today!

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What I’ve Read Since I last Posted…

The World That We Know by Alice Hoffman

Cross My Heart by Pamela Cook

Lapse by Sarah Thornton

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New Posts

Review: Sarong Party Girls by Cheryl Liu-Lien Tan

Review: The World That We Knew by Alice Hoffman

Review: Cross My Heart by Pamela Cook

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What I’m Reading This Week

Just One Wish by Rachael Johns

Three women, three secrets, one life-changing journey. Alice has always been a trailblazer as a scientist, activist, and mother. She knew her choices would involve sacrifices, but now, on the eve of her eightieth birthday, she’s beginning to wonder if she’s sacrificed too much.

Alice’s daughter Sappho rebelled against her unconventional upbringing, choosing to marry young and embrace life as a homemaker, but her status as a domestic goddess has recently taken a surprising turn.

Ged has always been the peacemaker between her grandmother and mother. A tenacious journalist she knows what she wants in life and love, yet when everything in her world starts falling apart, she begins to question whether she really knows anyone at all.

At a crossroads in each of their lives, Alice, Sappho and Ged embark on a celebratory trip together, but instead of bringing them closer, the holiday sparks life-changing consequences and lifts the lid on a fifty-year secret.

Can Ged rescue her family if their story is built on a betrayal?

Xxxxxx

 

Dead Man Switch by Tara Moss

She’s a woman in a man’s world …

Sydney, 1946. Billie Walker is living life on her own terms. World War II has left her bereaved, her photojournalist husband missing and presumed dead. Determined not to rely on any man for her future, she re-opens her late father’s detective agency.

Billie’s bread and butter is tailing cheating spouses – it’s easy, pays the bills and she has a knack for it. But her latest case, the disappearance of a young man, is not proving straightforward …

Soon Billie is up to her stylish collar in bad men, and not just the unfaithful kind – these are the murdering kind. Smugglers. Players. Gangsters. Billie and her loyal assistant must pit their wits against Sydney’s ruthless underworld and find the young man before it’s too late.

xxxxxx

 

Riverstone Ridge by Mandy Magro

After making a mistake that felt like the end of the world to her teenage self, Nina Jones fled the small town of Huntingvale. Now sixteen years later her beloved adoptive mother, Bea, has passed away, forcing Nina to return and decide whether to sell her family home, Riverstone Ridge. But even though Bea can’t be there to help her through it all, she’s left Nina five letters, one sent a week, to finally share the secrets she’d been unable to reveal in life.

For Logan Steele, Nina’s return is the catalyst he’s needed to finally move beyond his tragic past and start living again. But only if she stays. When mysterious and increasingly worrisome accidents start happening around the homestead, both Logan’s cop instincts and his protective feelings toward Nina spur him to investigate. Will he be able to piece together the puzzle of the past in time?

And with dark family secrets emerging from Bea’s last words rippling into the present day, how will Nina find the courage to be truthful to the one man who has always held her heart?

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Thanks for stopping by!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #SundayPost #SundaySalon

 

The It’s Monday! What Are You Reading meme is hosted at BookDate

I’m also linking to The Sunday Post @ Caffeinated Reviewer

And the Sunday Salon @ ReaderBuzz

Life…

I’ve been enjoying the October Labour Day long weekend, though the weather has been a little mixed.

On Saturday afternoon I wandered around at the Old Bar Beach Festival, an annual event in the next town over which includes a Kombi and Classic Car Display, you can see them lined up on the airfield in the photo below. The festival itself isn’t huge…a range of stalls – crafts, food, clothes, jewellery etc, a few amusement rides for the kids, and live music.

Photo by Eyes from Above Aerial Photography

On Sunday night my husband was browsing YouTube and decided to play through some of those ‘can you guess the song/artist/tv/movie theme tune’ video’s. One by one the kids were sucked in and we all spent hours ‘competing’. My husband I were pretty much useless with any song newer than the turn of the century, but it seems we have successfully indoctrinated the kids (aged from 13-23) because they had few problems with the 1960/1970/1980 hits they’ve listened to since infancy (I’m all about the rock/pop hits and power ballads, hubby is a heavy rock/metal and country music fan). It was all pretty hilarious.

We don’t have any real plans for today, though there are a few tasks around the house that need doing.

I almost forgot…Congratulations to Katy E who won Where the Light Enters by Sara DonatiWhere the Light Enters by Sara Donati. Thank you to all those who entered.

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What I’ve Read Since I last Posted…

Silver by Chris Hammer

488 Rules for Life by Kitty Flanagan

The Forest City Killer by Vanessa Brown

Sarong Party Girls by Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan

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New Posts

Review: The Lying Room by Nicole French

Review: 488 Rules for Life by Kitty Flanagan

Review: Silver by Chris Hammer

Review: The Forest City Killer by Vanessa Brown

Six Degrees of Separation: Three Women to Unmentionable

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What I’m Reading This Week

The World That We Knew by Alice Hoffman

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Dovekeepers and The Marriage of Opposites comes Alice Hoffman’s darkly magical story of in a heartbreaking time of war when men became monsters, children navigated a world without parents, and women were willing to sacrifice everything for those they loved.

In Berlin, at the time when the world changed forever, Hanni Kohn knows she has to send her twelve-year-old daughter away to save her from the Nazi regime. Turning to an old woman who is familiar with Jewish magic, she finds her way to the daughter of a rabbi who creates a Golem, a mystical Jewish creature sworn to protect Hanni’s precious daughter Lea.

Lea’s journey with the Golem to France is fraught with danger and raw emotion. They travel from Paris, where Lea meets her soulmate, to a convent in western France known for its silver roses, to a mountaintop village where three thousand Jews were saved, to a farm where the bees never forgive.

What does it mean to lose your mother? What makes a family? How is it possible to survive cruelty and continue to love? In a life that is as unreal as a fairytale, Alice Hoffman’s The World That We Knew takes us on a journey of loss and resistance, good and evil, the fantastical and the mortal, to a place where all roads lead past the angel of death and love is never-ending.

++++++

Cross My Heart by Pamela Cook

When a promise kept means a life is broken…a haunting story of guilt, redemption and friendship that will have you turning pages well past bed-time.

When a promise kept means a life is broken …

Tessa De Santis’s child-free marriage in inner-city Sydney is ordered and comfortable, and she likes it that way.

When tragedy strikes and her childhood friend Skye Whittaker dies, Tess is bound to honour a promise to become foster-mother to Skye’s ten-year-old daughter, Grace, throwing her life upside down.

Leaving her husband and work-driven life behind, Tess travels to an isolated property where the realities of her friend’s life – and death – hit hard. The idyllic landscape and an unexpected form of therapy ease her fears, and her relationship with Grace begins to blossom.

But a secret from her earlier life with Skye refuses to remain hidden, and Tess is forced into a decision that will either right the wrongs of the past, or completely destroy her future.

Cross My Heart is a haunting story of guilt, redemption and friendship set in the beautiful central west of New South Wales.

++++++

Resurrection Bay by Emily Viskic

Caleb Zelic, profoundly deaf since early childhood, has always lived on the outside – watching, picking up telltale signs people hide in a smile, a cough, a kiss. When a childhood friend is murdered, a sense of guilt and a determination to prove his own innocence sends Caleb on a hunt for the killer. But he can’t do it alone. Caleb and his troubled friend Frankie, an ex-cop, start with one clue: Scott, the last word the murder victim texted to Caleb. But Scott is always one step ahead.

This gripping, original and fast-paced crime thriller is set between a big city and a small coastal town, Resurrection Bay, where Caleb is forced to confront painful memories. Caleb is a memorable protagonist who refuses to let his deafness limit his opportunities, or his participation in the investigation. But does his persistence border on stubbornness? And at what cost? As he delves deeper into the investigation Caleb uncovers unwelcome truths about his murdered friend – and himself.

+++++++

Lapse by Sarah Thornton

All it took was a lapse…a momentary lapse…to bring Clementine Jones’ world crashing down. Now she’s living like a hermit in small-town Katinga, coaching the local footy club. She’s supposed to be lying low, but here she is, with her team on the cusp of their first premiership in fifty years—and the whole bloody town counting on her, cheering her on.

So why the hell would her star player quit on the eve of the finals?

It’s a question she wishes she’d left alone. Others are starting to ask questions too—questions about her. Clem’s not the only one with a secret, and as tension builds, the dark violence just below the town’s surface threatens to erupt. Pretty soon there’ll be nowhere left for Clem to hide.

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Thanks for stopping by!

Six Degrees of Separation: Three Women to Unmentionables

 

Hosted by Kate at Books Are My favourite and Best, the Six Degrees of Separation meme asks you to start at the same place as other readers, add six books, and see where you end up!

I’ve seen mixed opinions on Three Women by Lisa Taddeo, the book chosen to be this month’s starting point. I had vague plans to read it myself but didn’t get to it. The description of Maggie’s story in the blurb of Three Women though immediately called to mind a book I read several years ago.

Precocious by Joanna Barnard tells the story of Fiona who had an affair with her English teacher when she was fourteen. While Fiona has always been convinced she was the instigator of their relationship, learning that she was not the first, nor had been the last, in a long line of student conquests she is forced to reexamine their past, and present, relationship.

It’s the tag for Precocious ‘Can there be a more unreliable narrator than a teenage girl?’ that leads me to The Accusation by Wendy James. In this provocative tale, a teenage girl accuses drama teacher Susannah of abducting and keeping her captive for over a month. It’s an engrossing story, inspired by a Victorian crime known as The Canning Affair.

Marie was just a teenager when she was raped by a stranger in her apartment. The police did not believe her and she was charged, and convicted, of making a false report. Two years later the capture of a serial rapist revealed photographs taken of Marie during her ordeal. She had told the truth. T. Christian Miller and Ken Armstrong tell her story in Unbelievable, the book that has inspired a Netflix limited series.

 

The Betrayal by Y.A. Erskine is a thinly veiled admission of an incident in Erskine’s own eleven year police career, though she chose not to report. It features a young police Constable who is sexually assaulted by a colleague. When Lucy reports the attack she is accused of false reporting, targeted in a smear campaign, harassed and physically threatened by many of those she works with.

Sexual harassment in the workplace has long been an issue, in Whisper Network by Chandler Baker four female employees have had enough and refuse to stay silent any longer, but just how far will they go?

I wanted to finish this chain on a slightly more upbeat note which leads me to Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady’s Guide to Sex, Marriage and Manners by Therese Oneill. While it often seems as if change is slow for women in society, this non-fiction work, a ‘hilarious, illustrated, scandalously honest (yet never crass) guide to the secrets of Victorian womanhood’, proves things have been much, much worse.

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Join in by posting your own six degrees chain on your blog and adding the link in the Linky section (or comments) of each month’s post at booksaremyfavouriteandbest . If you don’t have a blog, you can share your chain in the comments section. You can also check out links to posts on Twitter using the hashtag #6Degrees

 

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #SundayPost #SundaySalon

 

The It’s Monday! What Are You Reading meme is hosted at BookDate

I’m also linking to The Sunday Post @ Caffeinated Reviewer

And the Sunday Salon @ ReaderBuzz

++++++

Life…

I hit a bit of a wall this week, just a lot of petty stuff going on that played havoc with my plans. Such is life, I guess.

I’ll have to try and play catch-up this week, but it’s school holidays, and though my kids are all pretty independent it does change my routine somewhat. I can only try, right?

It’s the last Monday of the month, so time to check in with my challenge progress.

Australian Women Writer’s Challenge: 44/50

2019 Aussie Author Challenge: 11/12

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What I’ve Read Since I last Posted…

The Model Wife by Tricia Stringer

Takes One To Know One by Susan Isaacs

The Lying Room by Nicci French

 

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New Posts

Review: The Model Wife by Tricia Stringer

Review: Takes One To Know One by Susan Isaacs

Book Bounty

 

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What I’m Reading This Week

(Click on the cover to view at Goodreads)

 

Silver by Chris Hammer

For half a lifetime, journalist Martin Scarsden has run from his past. But now there is no escaping. He’d vowed never to return to his hometown, Port Silver, and its traumatic memories. But now his new partner, Mandy Blonde, has inherited an old house in the seaside town and Martin knows their chance of a new life together won’t come again. Martin arrives to find his best friend from school days brutally murdered, and Mandy the chief suspect. With the police curiously reluctant to pursue other suspects, Martin goes searching for the killer. And finds the past waiting for him.

He’s making little progress when a terrible new crime starts to reveal the truth. The media descend on Port Silver, attracted by a story that has it all: sex, drugs, celebrity and religion. Once again, Martin finds himself in the front line of reporting. Yet the demands of deadlines and his desire to clear Mandy are not enough: the past is ever present.

An enthralling and propulsive thriller from the acclaimed and bestselling author of Scrublands.

xxxxxx

488 Rules for Life by Kitty Flanagan

488 Rules for Life is Kitty Flanagan’s way of making the world a more pleasant place to live. Providing you with the antidote to every annoying little thing, these rules are not made to be broken.

488 Rules for Life is not a self-help book, because it’s not you who needs help, it’s other people. Whether they’re walking and texting, asphyxiating you on public transport with their noxious perfume cloud, or leaving one useless square of toilet paper on the roll, a lot of people just don’t know the rules.

But thanks to Kitty Flanagan’s comprehensive guide to modern behaviour, our world will soon be a much better place. A place where people don’t ruin the fruit salad by putting banana in it … where your co-workers respect your olfactory system and don’t reheat their fish curry in the office microwave … where middle aged men don’t have ponytails …

What started as a joke on Kitty Flanagan’s popular segment on ABC TV’s The Weekly, is now a quintessential reference book with the power to change society. (Or, at least, make it a bit less irritating.)

What people are (Kitty Flanagan is) saying about this book:

‘You’re welcome everyone.’

‘Thank god for me.’

‘I’d rather be sad and lonely, but right.’

‘There’s not actually 488 rules in here but it sure feels like it’.

xxxxxx

 

The Forest City Killer by Vanessa Brown

Dig deep into the unsolved murder of Jackie English and join the hunt for a serial killer

Fifty years ago, a serial killer prowled the quiet city of London, Ontario, marking it as his hunting grounds. As young women and boys were abducted, raped, and murdered, residents of the area held their loved ones closer and closer, terrified of the monster — or monsters — stalking the streets. Homicide detective Dennis Alsop began hunting the killer in the 1960s, and he didn’t stop searching until his death 30 years later. For decades, detectives, actual and armchair, and the victims’ families and friends continued to ask questions: Who was the Forest City Killer? Was there more than one person? Or did a depraved individual commit all of these crimes on his own?

Combing through the files Detective Alsop left behind, researcher Vanessa Brown reopens the cases, revealing previously unpublished witness statements, details of evidence, and astonishing revelations about how this serial killer got away. And through her investigation, Vanessa discovers the unthinkable: like the notorious Golden State Killer, the Forest City Killer is still alive . . . and a simple DNA test could bring him to justice.

xxxxxx

 

Sarong Party Girls by Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan

A brilliant and utterly engaging novel—Emma set in modern Asia—about a young woman’s rise in the glitzy, moneyed city of Singapore, where old traditions clash with heady modern materialism.

On the edge of twenty-seven, Jazzy hatches a plan for her and her best girlfriends: Sher, Imo, and Fann. Before the year is out, these Sarong Party Girls will all have spectacular weddings to rich ang moh—Western expat—husbands, with Chanel babies (the cutest status symbols of all) quickly to follow. Razor-sharp, spunky, and vulgarly brand-obsessed, Jazzy is a determined woman who doesn’t lose.

As she fervently pursues her quest to find a white husband, this bombastic yet tenderly vulnerable gold-digger reveals the contentious gender politics and class tensions thrumming beneath the shiny exterior of Singapore’s glamorous nightclubs and busy streets, its grubby wet markets and seedy hawker centers. Moving through her colorful, stratified world, she realizes she cannot ignore the troubling incongruity of new money and old-world attitudes which threaten to crush her dreams. Desperate to move up in Asia’s financial and international capital, will Jazzy and her friends succeed?

Vividly told in Singlish—colorful Singaporean English with its distinctive cadence and slang—Sarong Party Girls brilliantly captures the unique voice of this young, striving woman caught between worlds. With remarkable vibrancy and empathy, Cheryl Tan brings not only Jazzy, but her city of Singapore, to dazzling, dizzying life.

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Thanks for stopping by!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #SundayPost #SundaySalon

The It’s Monday! What Are You Reading meme is hosted at BookDate

I’m also linking to The Sunday Post @ Caffeinated Reviewer

And the Sunday Salon @ ReaderBuzz

Life…

I binged a shocking amount of TV this week

I watched The Bletchley Circle and The Bletchley Circle: San Fransisco, both of which I enjoyed.

I also watched the reboot season of SeaChange, it’s kinda cool how many of the original characters (now 20 years older) make an appearance.

And after reading and reviewing Unbelievable I watched the Netflix limited series (I included a trailer with my review post)

With hubby I watched about eight seasons of Under Arrest (the Canadian version of COPs), which has the most annoying theme ‘song’ ever.

I’m not sure what I’m going to binge next, I’m not a ‘mood’ reader, but I’m very much a ‘mood’ watcher, and though I never reread, I do rewatch favourite shows.

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What I’ve Read Since I last Posted…

Elevator Pitch by Linwood Barclay

Long Way Home by Nicola Marsh

Unbelievable by T. Christian Miller & Ken Armstrong

Where The Light Enters by Sara Donati

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New Posts

Review: Elevator Pitch by Linwood Barclay ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Review: Long Way Home by Nicola Marsh ⭐️⭐️⭐️

🇦🇺 Australian Reading Hour

Review: Unbelievable by T. Christian Miller & Ken Armstrong ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Review & Giveaway: Where The Light Enters by Sara Donati ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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What I’m Reading This Week

The Lying Room by Nicci French

Neve Connolly looks down at a murdered man.

She doesn’t call the police.

‘You know, it’s funny,’ Detective Inspector Hitching said. ‘Whoever I see, they keep saying, talk to Neve Connolly, she’ll know. She’s the one people talk to, she’s the one people confide in.’

A trusted colleague and friend. A mother. A wife. Neve Connolly is all these things.

She has also made mistakes; some small, some unconsciously done, some large, some deliberate. She is only human, after all. But now one mistake is spiralling out of control and Neve is bringing those around her into immense danger. She can’t tell the truth. So how far is she prepared to go to protect those she loves? And who does she really know? And who can she trust?

A liar. A cheat. A threat. Neve Connolly is all these things.

Could she be a murderer?

++++++

Takes One To Know One by Susan Isaacs

Just a few years ago, Corie Geller was busting terrorists as an agent for the FBI. But at thirty-five, she traded in her badge for the stability of marriage and motherhood. Now Corie is married to the brilliant and remarkably handsome Judge Josh Geller and is the adoptive mother of his lovely 14-year-old daughter. Between cooking meals and playing chauffeur, Corie scouts Arabic fiction for a few literary agencies and, on Wednesdays, has lunch with her fellow Shorehaven freelancers at a so-so French restaurant. Life is, as they say, fine.

But at her weekly lunches, Corie senses that something’s off. Pete Delaney, a milquetoast package designer, always shows up early, sits in the same spot (often with a different phone in hand), and keeps one eye on the Jeep he parks in the lot across the street. Corie intuitively feels that Pete is hiding something–and as someone who is accustomed to keeping her FBI past from her new neighbors, she should know. But does Pete really have a shady alternate life, or is Corie just imagining things, desperate to add some spark to her humdrum suburban existence? She decides that the only way to find out is to dust off her FBI toolkit and take a deep dive into Pete Delaney’s affairs.

Always sassy, smart, and wickedly witty, Susan Isaacs is at her formidable best in a novel that is both bitingly wry and ominously thrilling.

++++++

Sarong Party Girls by Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan

A brilliant and utterly engaging novel—Emma set in modern Asia—about a young woman’s rise in the glitzy, moneyed city of Singapore, where old traditions clash with heady modern materialism.

On the edge of twenty-seven, Jazzy hatches a plan for her and her best girlfriends: Sher, Imo, and Fann. Before the year is out, these Sarong Party Girls will all have spectacular weddings to rich ang moh—Western expat—husbands, with Chanel babies (the cutest status symbols of all) quickly to follow. Razor-sharp, spunky, and vulgarly brand-obsessed, Jazzy is a determined woman who doesn’t lose.

As she fervently pursues her quest to find a white husband, this bombastic yet tenderly vulnerable gold-digger reveals the contentious gender politics and class tensions thrumming beneath the shiny exterior of Singapore’s glamorous nightclubs and busy streets, its grubby wet markets and seedy hawker centers. Moving through her colorful, stratified world, she realizes she cannot ignore the troubling incongruity of new money and old-world attitudes which threaten to crush her dreams. Desperate to move up in Asia’s financial and international capital, will Jazzy and her friends succeed?

Vividly told in Singlish—colorful Singaporean English with its distinctive cadence and slang—Sarong Party Girls brilliantly captures the unique voice of this young, striving woman caught between worlds. With remarkable vibrancy and empathy, Cheryl Tan brings not only Jazzy, but her city of Singapore, to dazzling, dizzying life.

++++++

The Modern Wife by Tricia Stringer

Even a good woman can be pushed too far…From bestselling author Tricia Stringer, this beautifully realised multi-generational family story looks at what happens when real-life betrayals and struggling relationships clash with outdated ideas of what a woman should be.

Natalie King’s life is full. Some might say too full. With her teaching job, a farm to run, three grown daughters who have not quite got a handle on things, a reserved husband and a demanding mother-in-law, most days she is too busy to think about whether she is happy. But her life has meaning, doesn’t it? After all, she is the one person everyone depends upon.

But when an odd gift from her mother-in-law – an old book in the form of stern and outdated advice for young wives – surfaces again, it brings with it memories she thought she had buried deep. Has this insidious little book exerted some kind of hold over her? Could it be that in her attempts to be a loving wife and mother, she no longer knows who she is?

On a day when it seems everyone is taking her for granted, and as the ghost of a past betrayal rises, it becomes clear that even this good mother and model wife can be pushed too far …

‘A delightful, wise and heartwarming novel about second chances that celebrates friendships old and new.’ Rachael Johns, author.

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Thanks for stopping by!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #SundayPost #SundaySalon

 

The It’s Monday! What Are You Reading meme is hosted at BookDate

I’m also linking to The Sunday Post @ Caffeinated Reviewer

And the Sunday Salon @ ReaderBuzz

Life…

It happened.

I probably need to get one.

And a housekeeper.

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What I’ve Read Since I last Posted…

Don’t You Forget About Me by Mhairi McFarlane

The Gilded Hour by Sara Donati

Handwritten Recipes by Michael Popek

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New Posts

Review: Don’t You Forget About Me by Mhairi McFarlane

Review: A Month of Sunday’s by Liz Byrski

Review: The Gilded Hour by Sara Donati

Weekend Cooking: Handwritten Recipes by Michael Popek

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What I’m Reading This Week

It all begins on a Monday, when four people board an elevator in a Manhattan office tower. Each presses a button for their floor, but the elevator proceeds, non-stop, to the top. Once there, it stops for a few seconds, and then plummets.

Right to the bottom of the shaft.

It appears to be a horrific, random tragedy. But then, on Tuesday, it happens again, in a different Manhattan skyscraper. And when Wednesday brings yet another high-rise catastrophe, one of the most vertical cities in the world—and the nation’s capital of media, finance, and entertainment—is plunged into chaos.

Clearly, this is anything but random. This is a cold, calculated bid to terrorize the city. And it’s working. Fearing for their lives, thousands of men in women working in offices across the city refuse leave their homes. Commerce has slowed to a trickle. Emergency calls to the top floors of apartment buildings go unanswered.

Who is behind this? Why are they doing it? What do these deadly acts of sabotage have to do with the fingerless body found on the High Line? Two seasoned New York detectives and a straight-shooting journalist must race against time to find the answers before the city’s newest, and tallest, residential tower has its ribbon-cutting on Thursday.

With each diabolical twist, Linwood Barclay ratchets up the suspense, building to a shattering finale. Pulsating with tension, Elevator Pitch is a riveting tale of psychological suspense that is all too plausible . . . and will chill readers to the bone.

++++++

 

A prodigal daughter returns to Brockenridge…

Eleven years ago Ruby Aston left Brockenridge – and its small-town gossip – for the anonymity of the big city. Now, a grieving Ruby is forced to come home to the place she loathes. But it also means returning to someone she’s always regretted leaving behind…

Connor Delaney is determined to prove himself and not get by on his family name alone. To do this he needs to acquire the local roadhouse. He never anticipated the owner would be the same ‘bad girl’ who ditched him at the high school ball and was never heard from again.

For Alisha Nathieson, the grief of suddenly losing her dear friend and employer Clara Aston has forced her to examine her choice to stay to support her aging parents. As she battles a growing need to explore her past, temptation wars with duty. And then there are her feelings for handsome chef Harry, who has secrets of his own…

If Ruby follows her heart and saves her mother’s legacy, will she lose the one man she’s longed for all along?

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From the international bestselling author of The Gilded Hour comes Sara Donati’s enthralling epic about two trailblazing female doctors in nineteenth-century New York

Obstetrician Dr. Sophie Savard returns home to the achingly familiar rhythms of Manhattan in the early spring of 1884 to rebuild her life after the death of her husband. With the help of Dr. Anna Savard, her dearest friend, cousin, and fellow physician she plans to continue her work aiding the disadvantaged women society would rather forget.

As Sophie sets out to construct a new life for herself, Anna’s husband, Detective-Sergeant Jack Mezzanotte calls on them both to consult on two new cases: the wife of a prominent banker has disappeared into thin air, and the corpse of a young woman is found with baffling wounds that suggest a killer is on the loose. In New York it seems that the advancement of women has brought out the worst in some men. Unable to ignore the plight of New York’s less fortunate, these intrepid cousins draw on all resources to protect their patients.

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Even a good woman can be pushed too far…From bestselling author Tricia Stringer, this beautifully realised multi-generational family story looks at what happens when real-life betrayals and struggling relationships clash with outdated ideas of what a woman should be.

Natalie King’s life is full. Some might say too full. With her teaching job, a farm to run, three grown daughters who have not quite got a handle on things, a reserved husband and a demanding mother-in-law, most days she is too busy to think about whether she is happy. But her life has meaning, doesn’t it? After all, she is the one person everyone depends upon.

But when an odd gift from her mother-in-law – an old book in the form of stern and outdated advice for young wives – surfaces again, it brings with it memories she thought she had buried deep. Has this insidious little book exerted some kind of hold over her? Could it be that in her attempts to be a loving wife and mother, she no longer knows who she is?

On a day when it seems everyone is taking her for granted, and as the ghost of a past betrayal rises, it becomes clear that even this good mother and model wife can be pushed too far …

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Thanks for stopping by!

Weekend Cooking: Handwritten Recipes: A Bookseller’s Collection of Curious and Wonderful Recipes Forgotten Between the Pages by Michael Popek

 

 

I picked up Handwritten Recipes: A Bookseller’s Collection of Curious and Wonderful Recipes Forgotten Between the Pages when I was at the library the other day, tempted by the description, and thinking it would make a good choice for my regular Weekend Cooking post.

Michael Popek works in his family’s used bookstore, and these handwritten recipes have been found within the pages of books

I tend to use anything close by to mark my page in a book if needed, generally a used envelope (usually with a shopping list or menu plan scribbled on it), catalogue pages, my reading glasses, or even my phone, even though I own (at least) a dozen bookmarks, I rarely seem to have one to hand.

It’s been quite a while since I’ve written down a recipe. I’m more likely to type it into my phone’s Notes app or directly into my recipe app – I use Pepperplate.

Honestly, the book was a bit disappointing. There was little in the way of personalisation of the handwritten recipes, I was expecting more context I think, though an image of the cover of the book in which the recipe was found is included. Most of the recipes were probably copied from the book they were found in, since many were cookbooks.

The recipes are fairly ordinary, ranging from breads and cakes, through to main meals and side dishes. It does include a recipe for a Zucchini Bread which is very similar to what I’m planning to make later today, with the addition of choc bits (I ran out of time to make it before this post -recipe here from Sally’s Baking Addiction).

 

 

If you want to know what to expect in this book you’ll find plenty of like examples on the website HandwrittenRecipes.com, which Popek continues to keep up to date. I probably wouldn’t recommend you buy the book unless you have a particular interest, add the blog to your feed instead.

Michael Popek has also published Forgotten Bookmarks: A Bookseller’s Collection of Odd Things Lost Between the Pages, and If you are the curious sort, you can follow the blog at ForgottenBookmarks.com.

 

Have you ever left a recipe in a book? What do you most often use as a bookmark?

 

Six Degrees of Separation: A Gentleman in Moscow to The Farm

 

Hosted by Kate at Books Are My favourite and Best, the Six Degrees of Separationasks you to start at the same place as other readers, add six books, and see where you end up!

I haven’t read A Gentleman in Moscow but the description tells me that it features an unrepentant Russian aristocrat who is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin.

No one was imprisoned in The Hydro Majestic, a grand hotel built among the Blue Mountains of NSW Australia, which is the setting for Palace of Tears by Julian Leatherdale, a generational saga of family, passion, secrets and vengeance.

One of the most famous palace’s in the world is The Palace of Versailles, once the residence of French royalty. The Blue Rose by Kate Forsyth is set during the period of the French Revolution, and the story’s protagonist, Viviane de Faitaud, spends both time at court, and at her family estate, Château de Belisama-sur-le-Lac in Brittany.

Château is French for castle, which brought to mind Hannah and Emil by Belinda Castles. Inspired by the lives of Castles’ grandparents, this novel relates a love affair that transcended the political, religious and social strictures of the time. Hannah and Emil are cruelly separated when Emil, a German refugee in Britain, was sent to Australia and interned in a camp for ‘enemy aliens’ during WWII.

Anyone with Japanese ancestry living in the United States during WWII were also forced into interment camps after the bombing of Pearl Harbour. Garden of Stones by Sophie Littlefield is a poignant tale of a mother and daughter forced to endure the corruption, injustice and indignity of imprisonment.

The author of Safe Harbour, Helene Young, lives on a yacht. She and her husband are currently docked in Vanuatu, but her rural romance novel is set in a small coastal community in Australia, surrounded by dairy farms.

A remote farm in Sweden is the setting of The Farm by Rob Tom Smith, an intriguing psychological thriller that is sure to keep you guessing. Is Daniel’s mother, Tilde crazy, or is Daniel’s father really responsible for a reprehensible crime?

 

Did you notice? We ‘moved’ from a hotel, to a palace, to a castle, to an internment camp, to a harbour, and finally a farm.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #SundayPost #SundaySalon

The It’s Monday! What Are You Reading meme is hosted at BookDate

I’m also linking to The Sunday Post @ Caffeinated Reviewer

And the Sunday Salon @ ReaderBuzz

Life…

Spring is here! September 1st is the official start of Spring in Australia.

My daughter had a wonderful time on her school trip, and it actually did snow on their last day on the slopes! She has come home with yet another cold though.

Yesterday was Father’s Day and we met my parents for coffee and cake at the club. I always forget to take photos on these occasions, but I remembered this time, just as we were leaving. My parents are in the middle, my husband is on the far right being dwarfed by our boys (who are just 13 & 15), and our girls are on the left (who are 23 & 16).

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What I’ve Read Since I last Posted…

The Ruin by Dervla McTiernan

Things You Save In a Fire by Katherine Center

Going Under by Sonia Henry

The Woman In the Window by A.J. Finn

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New Posts

Review: Matters of the Heart by Fiona Palmer ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2

Review: The Ruin (Cormac Reilly #1) by Dervla McTiernan ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2

Review: Things You Save In a Fire by Katherine Center ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Review: Going Under by Sonia Henry ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️1/2

Happy Father’s Day, Dad!

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What I’m Reading This Week

 

Reclusive Irish bookseller Shaun Ryan has always believed that his older brother, Teddy, died in a car accident. It’s only on his mother’s deathbed that he learns the truth: Teddy, who was gay, fled the Catholic, deeply conservative County Wicklow for New York decades earlier. Shaun finds no sign of him in New York or anywhere else–until he comes across the unsolved murder of a John Doe whose description matches Teddy’s.

Desperate for information, Shaun tracks down Chris Guzman, a woman who runs a website dedicated to matching missing persons cases with unidentified bodies. Through Chris’s site, a group of online cold case fanatics connect Teddy with the notorious “Boy in the Dress” murder, believed to be one of many committed by a serial killer targeting gay men.

But who are these cold case fanatics, and how do they know so much about a case that left the police and the FBI stumped? With investigators, amateurs, and one sadistic killer on a collision course, Missing Person is Sarah Lotz at her most thrilling and terrifying

xxxxxx

 

Two best friends. Eight pub quizzes. One shot at love…

There are some people who seem like they have all the answers in life. Clarrie Midwinter isn’t one of them.

At the age of 26, tomboy Clarrie is still struggling to become a ‘proper’ grown-up. She’s eternally strapped for cash, she hasn’t had a date in nearly a year and her attempts to quit smoking tend to take a nosedive after the second pint. Most annoyingly of all, her ladykiller best friend Simon just won’t stop asking her out. The only thing keeping her sane is her pub quiz team, the Mighty Morphin Flower Arrangers.

But when Simon bets her a date their team will win the quiz league, Clarrie is forced to confront what she really wants out of life – and love. Is it finally time for her to grow up?

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For over ten years, Ros, Adele, Judy and Simone have been in an online book club, but they have never met face to face. Until now…

Determined to enjoy her imminent retirement, Adele invites her fellow bibliophiles to help her house-sit in the Blue Mountains. It’s a tantalising opportunity to spend a month walking in the fresh air, napping by the fire and, of course, reading and talking about books.

But these aren’t just any books: each member has been asked to choose a book which will teach the others more about her. And with each woman facing a crossroads in her life, it turns out there’s a lot for them to learn, not just about their fellow book-clubbers, but also about themselves.

Liz Byrski has written a beautiful novel about the joy and comfort reading a good book can bring to us all.

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The gripping true story of a young law student, an unspeakable crime and a past that refuses to stay buried. When Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich begins a summer job at a law firm in Louisiana, working on the retrial defence of death-row convicted murderer and child molester Ricky Langley, she is staunchly anti-death penalty. But as soon as she watches footage of Ricky talking about his crimes, she has a shocking realization: she wants him to die.

As Alexandria pores over the facts of the murder delving deeper and deeper into Ricky’s difficult and unhappy childhood, she is also forced to face her own story, to unearth long-buried family secrets, to reckon with how her own past colours her view of this crime.

The Fact of a Body is a heart-stopping account of how crime, even the darkest and most appalling acts, can happen to any one of us. It is also proof that the truth – and how we reveal it – is more complicated, and powerful, than we could ever imagine.

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Thanks for stopping by!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #SundayPost #SundaySalon

 

The It’s Monday! What Are You Reading meme is hosted at BookDate

I’m also linking to The Sunday Post @ Caffeinated Reviewer

And the Sunday Salon @ ReaderBuzz

Life…

My youngest daughter headed off for her school snow trip yesterday with forty other classmates. Thankfully the conditions are good, given it’s officially the last week of winter of here. It would have been pretty dispiriting to make the 12 hour coach journey only to be unable to ski. I hope it snows while she is there, as it’s something she hasn’t experienced. I plan on keeping on eye on the resorts SnowCams, to see if I can spot her.

Technically, it’s my 9th blogoversary this Tuesday (27th August), but given I’ve not long returned from a 2 year hiatus, I’m not comfortable making a big deal of it. I think I might just let this one slide by, and celebrate next year instead.

It’s the last Monday of the month, so time to check in with my challenge progress.

Australian Women Writer’s Challenge: 39/50

2019 Aussie Author Challenge: 11/12

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What I’ve Read Since I last Posted…

Tidelands by Philippa Gregory

What Happens Now? By Sophia Money-Coutts

If I Don’t Make It, I Love You by Amye Archer & Loren Kleinman

Matters of the Heart by Fiona Palmer

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New Posts

Review: Meet Me in Venice by Barbara Hannay ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Review: Tidelands (Fairmile #1) by Philippa Gregory ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Review: If I Don’t Make It, I Love You: Survivors in the Aftermath of School Shootings by Amye Archer & Loren Kleinman ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Review: What Happens Now? By Sophia Money-Coutts ⭐️⭐️⭐️

*New Feature* Sunday Spotlight

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What I’m Reading This Week

 

A classic love story about manners, men and modern romance retold by bestselling Australian author, Fiona Palmer.

Western Australia, 2019: The Bennets are a farming family struggling to make ends meet. Lizzy, passionate about working the land, is determined to save the farm. Spirited and independent, she has little patience for her mother’s focus on finding a suitable man for each of her five daughters.

When the dashing Charles Bingley, looking to expand his farm holdings, buys the neighbouring property of Netherfield Park, Mrs Bennet and the entire district of Coodardy are atwitter with gossip and speculation. Will he attend the local dance and is he single? These questions are soon answered when he and Lizzy’s sister Jane form an instant connection on the night. But it is Charlie’s best friend, farming magnate Will Darcy, who leaves a lasting impression when he slights Lizzy, setting her against him.

Can Lizzy and Will put judgements and pride aside to each see the other for who they really are? Or in an age where appearance and social media rule, will prejudice prevail?

xxxxxx

A darkly funny and sexy novel that blows the lid off the medical profession and life inside a hospital by a young doctor whose anonymous article about the pressures of trainee doctors went viral around the world.

Dr Katarina ‘Kitty’ Holliday thought that once she finished medical school and found gainful employment at one of Sydney’s best teaching hospitals that her dream was just beginning. The hard years, she thought, were finally over.

But Kitty is in for a rude shock. Between trying to survive on the ward, in the operating theatre and in the emergency department without killing any of her patients or going under herself, Kitty finds herself facing situations that rock her very understanding of the vocation to which she intends to devote her life.

Going Under is a rare insight into the world of a trainee female medic that takes an unflinching look at the reality of being a doctor. It explores the big themes – life, death, power and love – through the eyes of Dr Holliday as she loses her identity and nearly her mind in the pressure-cooker world of the hospital. But it is also there that Kitty might find her own redemption and finally know herself for the first time. Darkly funny, sexy, moving and shocking, Going Under will grip you from the opening page and never let you go.

xxxxxx

 

Cassie Hanwell was born for emergencies. As one of the only female firefighters in her Texas firehouse, she’s seen her fair share of them, and she’s excellent at dealing with other people’s tragedies. But when her estranged and ailing mother asks her to uproot her life and move to Boston, it’s an emergency of a kind Cassie never anticipated.

The tough, old-school Boston firehouse is as different from Cassie’s old job as it could possibly be. Hazing, a lack of funding, and poor facilities mean that the firemen aren’t exactly thrilled to have a “lady” on the crew, even one as competent and smart as Cassie. Except for the handsome rookie, who doesn’t seem to mind having Cassie around. But she can’t think about that. Because she doesn’t fall in love. And because of the advice her old captain gave her: don’t date firefighters. Cassie can feel her resolve slipping…but will she jeopardize her place in a career where she’s worked so hard to be taken seriously?

Katherine Center’s Things You Save in a Fire is a heartfelt, affecting novel about life, love, and the true meaning of courage.

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Anna Fox lives alone—a recluse in her New York City home, unable to venture outside. She spends her day drinking wine (maybe too much), watching old movies, recalling happier times . . . and spying on her neighbors.

Then the Russells move into the house across the way: a father, a mother, their teenage son. The perfect family. But when Anna, gazing out her window one night, sees something she shouldn’t, her world begins to crumble—and its shocking secrets are laid bare.

What is real? What is imagined? Who is in danger? Who is in control? In this diabolically gripping thriller, no one—and nothing—is what it seems.

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Thanks for stopping by!

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