20 May 2019

Stacked-Up Book Thoughts: Sound Recommendations

Audiobook recommendtions from Beth Fish ReadsHappy Monday! I hope your part of the world had the same turn in the weather as mine did. My heat is finally completely turned off, I planted some seeds, I cleaned up part of the yard, and I started to set up the deck. Yeah, I'm pretty much wiped out!

Oh and we're now officially eating outside again! Lunch and dinner on the deck or porch from now until it gets too cold in the fall. Well, maybe not tonight (Sunday), because it's raining and blowing like crazy, and even the porch is wet. Sigh.

As for television, at this moment we're all about The Game of Thrones finale, which will have already aired by the time you read this.

What I'm Reading Now

Because I traveled last Monday and then did all those chores getting ready for summer, I didn't have a lot of print reading time. I am, however, currently in the middle of two really good books.

  • all about The Book of Jeremiah by Julie Zuckerman and Pariah by W. Michael GearThe first is The Book of Jeremiah by Julie Zuckerman (Press 53, May 3). I'm enjoying this novel, told in stories, which explores the life of a Jewish man over the course of 80 years, starting in the early 1930s. Thus the book, in turn, focuses on what it meant to be Jewish in the twentieth century. Each story is a snapshot in Jeremiah's life, but there are connecting threads. I'll have more on this book next Monday, if all goes well and I have time to finish it. (copy provided by the publicist)
  • The second is W. Michael Gear's Pariah (Daw, May 14). This is the third entry in the science-fiction Donovan series, which is about a group of people from Earth who are trying to establish an outpost on a distant planet. The story has themes of colonization, new beginnings, changing cultural and social rules, and interplanetary contact. In this installment, new characters have been introduced and familiar characters have grown and changed. I'm still enjoying the action and the premise. Again, hope to have a review next Monday. (copy provided by the publisher)
What I Listened to Last Week

Last week was so full of chores and catch-up that, as I said, I didn't really have much time to sit down and read. Once again, I'm so grateful for audiobooks. I finished three audiobooks last week, one of which kept us company on our long car trip to see my mom for Mother's Day Weekend. More on first two auidobooks will be available through AudioFile magazine.
  • reviews of Before She Knew Him by Peter Swanson and Inheritance Tracks by Catherine AirdBefore She Knew Him by Peter Swanson (Harper Audio; May 5, 10 hr, 15 min) is narrated almost entirely by Sophie Amoss, but Graham Halstead performs three chapters. I enjoyed this thriller, which involves a bipolar artist who thinks she's solved a cold case murder, but because of her illness, she is not taken very seriously. Is she mentally stable or is undergoing a manic episode? This was a twisty thriller, which fooled me almost to the very end. Amoss's characterizations and pacing held my interest, and Halstead provided an added creepy dimension. (audio copy for a freelance assignment; print copy from the publisher)
  • Inheritance Tracks by Catherine Aird (Blackstone Audio; April 16; 6 hr, 48 min) is narrated by Derek Perkins. This is the 25th installment in the Sloan and Crosby series, and though I'm sure I would have picked up on more inside jokes if I had listened to this series from the beginning, I truly didn't feel lost or that I was missing out. A surprise inheritance for a group of strangers, a missing person, several murders, and too many fingers in the pie made for a fun mystery that is mostly cozy, though stars a British police detective and his not-too-bright sidekick. Perkins nailed the characters' personalities, kept the dialogue flowing, and made the humor shine. (copy for a freelance assignment)
review of The Thicket by Joe R. LandsdaleThe Thicket by Joe R. Landsdale (Hachette Audio; 10 hr, 20 min; Sept. 2013) is narrated by Will Collyer. If you can believe it, I've been staring at an ARC of this book since 2013 (provided by Mulholland). I knew from the cover (yes, I'm shallow) and from the premise that this would be my kind of book. When I heard the novel was being made into a movie starring Peter Dinklage, I decided I'd better read it quick. As it turned out, Mr. BFR had the same thought and snagged my print copy. But, thanks to Hachette Audio, I was able to download the audiobook, and our marriage was saved (ha, ha).

Set in turn-of-the-twentieth-century rural east Texas, this engrossing coming-of-age story shines a light on the dying days of the Old West: men can still be shot down at high noon, but the sheriff now has a telephone on his desk, the whore house has electricity, and the bad guys can steal a car as easily as they can steal a horse. When their preacher grandfather decides to take 17-year-old Jack and his younger sister, Lula, to Kansas to live with their aunt, the trip goes wrong almost from the beginning. Jack, a farmer at heart, finds himself on a desperate mission to rescue Lula, who's been kidnapped by bank robbers. With no one else to turn to, he relies on a black gravedigger, a well-read bounty-hunter dwarf, and an ex-prostitute. As the group tracks the outlaws, Jack sees the way of the world and the dark hearts of humankind, but he also discovers his own character.

This was my first experience with Will Collyer (I think), and I was completely drawn in by his performance. His solid characterizations, his respect for the author's style and word choice, and his good sense of timing added to my connection to this novel. Highly recommended in print or audio.


Sarah (Sarah's Book Shelves) 5/20/19, 7:28 AM  

I read Before She Knew Him and enjoyed it but thought the ending was outlandish. Kind of a gimmicky cop-out. Which is my ongoing problem with thrillers.

bermudaonion 5/20/19, 7:42 AM  

I liked Before She Knew Him a lot. I love that Mr. BFR grabbed your book to read! I need to try a Lansdale book.

Susie | Novel Visits 5/20/19, 8:48 AM  

Yay! To spring finally arriving and getting all set up to enjoy your porch and deck. I just love being able to use outdoor spaces. It's almost enough to make me want to move to AZ. Almost!

Laurel-Rain Snow 5/20/19, 9:13 AM  

Your books look tempting. I really enjoyed Before She Knew Him. Eating out on the deck sounds wonderful. Enjoy your week, and here are MY WEEKLY UPDATES

Carol 5/20/19, 9:24 AM  

Our weather this weekend was perfect. Now today it's cooler and looks like it might rain.
I've only read one of Swanson's and didn't love it, but I keep meaning to give him another try.

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz 5/20/19, 9:27 AM  

My husband would enjoy The Thicket. I need to look for the audio before our next long trip.

I found it funny to think that you in your Northern World know it's summer when you turn off the heat. We know it's summer here in our Southern World when we turn on the air conditioning.

JoAnn 5/20/19, 10:55 AM  

The Thicket looks like a good one... glad audiobooks saved the marriage! ;-)

Kathy Martin 5/20/19, 1:50 PM  

It snowed all day yesterday! I am so ready for Spring to actually arrive. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

Greg 5/20/19, 2:25 PM  

Curious what you thought of Game of Thrones. :) And yay for nice weather. It's finally starting to turn here too, although we're still getting wind and rain. I love eating outdoors though, so the nicer weather will definitely be welcome!

Happy reading this week!

Vicki 5/20/19, 3:15 PM  

I see a few books I'll be checking to see if my library has. I hope you have a great week.

Sue Jackson 5/20/19, 7:10 PM  

I read Before She Knew Him for Shelf Awareness & enjoyed it (and so did my husband). I got to meet Peter Swanson at Booktopia a couple of years ago & also enjoyed his novel, Celine.

The Donovan series sounds intriguing!

Enjoy your books and the outdoors this week -


Book By Book

pussreboots 5/20/19, 8:39 PM  

All your books are new to me but sound interesting. Have a good week. My weekly update

Nise' 5/20/19, 9:24 PM  

I wish we could turn the heat off! I did come on this morning. I have been avoiding social media since I am behind on the GoT series and don't want to know what happened!

Yvonne 5/20/19, 10:31 PM  

We are having great weather too. I hope you enjoy your books. Have a great week!

shelleyrae @ book'd out 5/21/19, 6:30 AM  

The Thicket sounds good, I like what I’ve read of Landsdale’s.

Have a great reading week

rhapsodyinbooks 5/21/19, 9:22 AM  

The Thicket sounds totally like Jim's kind of book, and the kind I would hate - ha ha, so no marriage problems on that score! :--)

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