Archive for January, 2019

Little Comfort, by Edwin Hill

January 31, 2019

[Lesley] As a first book by this author there was some unevenness in writing, but I really enjoyed it. Hester is a great character – a mix of warmth, chaos, curiosity (not always a good thing), and toughness. Of course I couldn’t help but like the setting – Boston and NH. I’m not usually a mystery reader, but liked the pacing here and some of the unconventional clues and the strangeness of those who-done-it. I will definitely read #2.

Audiobook of Little Comfort available on Hoopla.

A few other books set in NH or NE to try:
The Last Policeman by Ben Winters
The Fireman by Joe Hill
The Boston Girl by Anita Diamant
The Arsonist by Sue Miller
The Penny Poet of Portsmouth by Katie Towler
Red House by Sarah Messer
Dogtown by Elyssa East


Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield

January 22, 2019


This book looked like it would be right up my alley – a combination folk tale/historical fiction/warm fires on icy Victorian British nights- and it did not disappoint. Setterfield is a wonderful storyteller. She lets the characters tell their stories in their own time – and it this brings out their hidden depths in often unexpected ways. I’ve not read her first book – The Thirteenth Tale – but I’m definitely adding it to my list. This book is a good choice for fans of Kate Morton. And if you enjoy the folk tale aspect of this book, you might also enjoy Katherine Arden and Naomi Novik.

Once Upon a River is available on eBook and audiobook on Libby/Overdrive.

The Library Book by Susan Orlean

January 9, 2019


This book would be interesting enough if it just told the story of the 1986 fire in the Los Angeles Public Library, the search for the suspected arsonist, and how the community came together to rebuild, but it is about so much more than that – and that is why I loved it. Susan Orlean does a great job of balancing of historical context and personal stories in a way that kept me completely engaged from start to finish. Even things that I’m not especially interested in, such as architecture, were interesting to me in this book. We learn about libraries throughout the world and throughout time, the dark history of book burning and libraries being targeted in wartime. This broader historical context is juxtaposed with individual stories, including the string of fascinating people we meet who ran the L. A. Public Library from its founding up to the present. We learn of Ray Bradbury’s personal connection to this library (he wrote Fahrenheit 451 there). You can feel the pain and trauma of the library staff in the aftermath of the fire. And throughout the book you can feel the personal connection Susan Orlean has to books and to libraries, both as an author, and because of mother, who always wished she had become a librarian herself, and whom Orlean was losing to dementia through the process of writing this book. This is a beautiful, interesting book. Highly recommend.

The Library Book can be found as an eBook and an audiobook on Libby/Overdrive.

Double Black Wendy Clinch

January 9, 2019


Boston’s Stacey Curtis leaves her cheating fiancé for a small town in the Green Mountain State of Vermont just to hang out, and do some waitress work for the upcoming ski season.

Upon arrival to her seasonal rental unit, she opens the door and to her amazement, she finds a murdered man lying dead in bed with a chain from a chainsaw cut through his throat! It just so happens to be one of the owners of the ski resort where she is working.

Over the next few months, she nervously believes she is considered the murderer as suspected by a homeless man that witnessed her entering the unit. The real killer ends up being the other partner of the ski resort. His reasoning for the killing is to acquire a bigger share of the profits as the ski resort is now up for sale.

Various characters are mentioned in the book, including ski patrol, locals, guest skiers and the founders of the resort, which makes it an interesting read if you are a ski buff.

The location is set at Spruce Peak, probably in the Killington/ Pico ski areas near Rutland, Vermont.

If you like, murder mysteries and skiing in New England this is a great book for you.

Double Black (The Ski Diva Mysteries Book 1) by [Wendy Clinch]