Some books sit on your nightstand for weeks as you read a little bit each night. These are not those books.
What Should Be Wild by Julia Fine
Maisie Cothay has a problem: She can't be touched and she can’t touch anyone. Her touch kills and resurrects, there's no in-between. She lives in an old manor near a fearsome wood which the villagers warn against entering. When her father disappears, she has to break out of a lifetime of training as she searches for him. This novel features strange immortal women and time that moves at a different pace. Written in an old-fashioned, formal style, it's an odd but rewarding coming-of- age fairy tale. 8 ½ Kittehs.
A Howl of Wolves by Judith Flanders
Sam is an amusing book editor in London who somehow gets involved in some interesting murders. This is the fourth book in the Sam Clair series and I’m always happy to see a new one. Fast read, not heavy on social commentary, offering a window on the publishing industry. 8 Kittehs
Dark Angel by Elly Griffiths
A new offering in the Ruth Galloway Mystery series
! Ruth, an archeologist with a daughter fathered by DCI Nelson (a married police officer) has plenty on her plate. Her paramour’s wife is pregnant (no one is quite sure who the father is, either Nelson or another policeman) and all the relationships are fraught. This sounds like a book revolving around sex! It’s not. Ruth takes an unplanned vacation in Italy to help an old friend with an archeological mystery. Earthquakes, murders, bad things happening back in England, and a particularly wrenching ending kept me up too late. There are many characters with storylines going in all directions. They’re worth the effort although most readers will want to start at the beginning of the series. 10 ½ kittehs.
Dead Pretty by David Mark
In this fifth installment of the Detective Sergeant McAvoy series
, McAvoy tries to find the murderer of Hannah, while dealing with his boss’s apparent breakdown. Aector is a moral person, so the trials and tribulations of being a cop wear on him mightily. Several different story lines merge and diverge — stay on your toes! Mark’s books are gritty, more police procedural than cozy, with complicated, realistic characters. I'm always happy when I see a new title on the shelf. 9 ½ Kittehs
Scot Free by Catriona McPherson
Lexy, a transplanted Scot, moves to California for love (and husband), gets a Reno divorce, becomes involved in a murder investigation, and things get really weird after that. I really enjoyed this book. Lexy’s off the wall humor and the bizarre cast of characters makes for a fun, fast read. I’m not even going to try to describe all the people she meets at the Last Ditch Hotel. Trust me, try it. 9 kittehs.
Blackfish City by Sam Miller
The climate wars have ended and the earth is ravaged. An amazing feat of engineering, a floating city in the Arctic Circle has degenerated into two populations — the haves and the have-nots. The city seethes with discord and anger. A well-constructed look into one possible future, I enjoyed this read. The several characters who propel the book are interesting and well-drawn, as are the visuals. Complex, depressing, and uplifting at the same time. 9 kittehs. (I would have given it more but I found it confusing at times, probably me, not it!)
Best Beach Ever by Wendy Wax
Number six in the 10 Beach Road series
, this is a fun chic-lit book. 5 women, 5 different disasters, rock gods, movie stars, babies, commitment issues, and revenge — what’s not to like? You don’t have to start at the beginning of the series to enjoy this summer read. The women are of different ages so their problems and how they deal with them break things up nicely. 8 kittehs.
*Cat emoji images via freepik
Another month, another cat pic: Appo is judging whether you've read enough this week.
Mindy works at the Little Turtle branch. She's a cat lady, an avid reader, and an old boomer.