16 December 2019

Stacked-Up Book Thoughts: Weekly Reset 2

Reviews and book news at Beth Fish ReadsI'm kind of in denial that Christmas is next week. We still have a couple of gifts to buy and have made a shopping date to get them taken care of. I hate waiting until the last minute, but that's what this year has been like.

We haven't been watching too much television and have fallen behind in a few series we used to follow on the various streaming services. I can't believe I haven't yet watched the new version of His Dark Materials on HBO. I loved those books, so I really need to make time for the series.

We're caught up with the Dublin Murders on STARZ. I like the screenplay and the acting, but I wish the producers had stuck with only one story at a time instead of combining two of the Tana French books into a single season. Still a good show.

Reading / Read

review of Death of a Witch by M. C. BeatonDeath of a Witch by M. C. Beaton (Grand Central, 2009): I went for total fluff this week and listened to the 24th Hamish Macbeth mystery. I love the characters and the Highland setting of this cozy mystery series. In this outing, Hamish has to solve a series of murders that start with a shifty newcomer who lures men to her remote cottage with promises of an herbal Viagra. As Hamish is trying to figure out who the killer is and the body count starts to rack up, he is also trying to sort out his love life, with three women on his radar. Meanwhile, he's determined to avoid the dreaded promotion that would change his comfortable lifestyle. Good humor mixed with a good mystery equals great entertainment. The audiobook (Blackstone, 5 hr, 37 min) was wonderfully read by Graeme Malcolm, who is the voice of the series. (personal collection)

review of Jeanine Cummins's American DirtThis week's main book is Jeanine Cummins's American Dirt (Flatiron, Jan. 21, 2020), which I hope lives up to its hype. This is a story of a mother and her young son who are forced to flee their middle-class life in Acapulco for the safety of the United States after they catch the eye of a violent drug lord. A new land, new language, new economic circumstance, and a new fear drive them north, but there's no guarantee the journey will end happily. This timely book about immigrants seeking asylum in the United States has been on my list for a while, especially because it tells a story of how an educated family with resources can find themselves on the run when lawlessness takes over their home town. I can't wait to get started. (print and digital copies provided by the publisher)

New to Me in Print

Book mail at Beth Fish Reads
  • Ghost Wall by Sarah Moss (Picador Dec. 31 [paperback]): What happens when a modern-day family who has been living as Iron Age Britons in the bog lands allow a group of anthropology students to join the experiment?
  • Beginning with Cannonballs by Jill McCroskey Coupe (She Writes, May 2020): This book follows 50 years in the lives of two girls whose deep childhood friendship is torn apart by segregation in 1950s Tennessee.
  • Cook, Taste, Learn by Guy Crosby (Columbia University Press, Dec. 10): The subtitle of this book tells it all: 'How the Evolution of Science Transformed the Art of Cooking."
  • The Poison Garden by Alex Marwood (Penguin, Jan., 14, 2020): A psychological thriller set  in an isolated cult community in Wales.
  • Eat for the Planet Cookbook by Nil Zacharias and Gene Stone (Abrams, Jan 7): Recipes and information about switching to a plant-based diet.


rhapsodyinbooks 12/16/19, 8:15 AM  

Yes! We just discovered Dublin Murders yesterday! Loving it so far...

Susie | Novel Visits 12/16/19, 8:48 AM  

I'm envious that you get to read and listen to American Dirt. When I found out the audiobook narrator is Cassandra Campbell, I became pretty determined to try and wait for the audiobook. I've emailed about getting an early copy, but no luck.

Hope you Christmas is wonderful!

Jackie McGuinness 12/16/19, 9:58 AM  

I agree about the Dublin Murders, I read the books but John hasn't and is having some trouble following.

bermudaonion 12/16/19, 10:49 AM  

I'm behind on Christmas, too, and have decided to just do what I can and not worry about the rest. I'm excited about American Dirt - the author spoke at SIBA and there wasn't a dry eye in the place when she was done.

JoAnn 12/16/19, 11:17 AM  

I can't wait to hear what you think of American Dirt... so much hype, but it sounds so good!

Les in Oregon 12/16/19, 1:18 PM  

I'm going to nominate American Dirt to my book club for 2020. I haven't read it, but it's received a lot of praise, so I'm hopeful that it will be a good choice.

Love those earlier Tana French books and need to watch the series! I'm also tempted to reread The Likeness, which is probably my favorite.

Kathy Martin 12/16/19, 2:21 PM  

I'm glad I'm not the only one in denial about fast approaching Christmas. My tree is half decorated. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

sherry fundin 12/16/19, 3:46 PM  

death of a witch looks good and i too am in denial. lol
sherry @ fundinmental

Greg 12/16/19, 4:55 PM  

I can't BELIEVE Christmas is next week. wow. I still have a few things to get too.

American Dirt sounds really good.

Laurel-Rain Snow 12/16/19, 5:05 PM  

I've been eyeing the Beaton books. They look good!

Enjoy your week, and thanks for visiting my blog.

Nise' 12/16/19, 8:56 PM  

Ugh, I am in that same denial and need to get it done!! Going to check out the series you mentioned. American Dirt certainly is getting lots of hype.

Yvonne 12/16/19, 10:56 PM  

It really is hard to believe that Christmas is next week. Everything is going so fast! Hope you enjoy your books and have a great week!

shelleyrae @ book'd out 12/17/19, 2:15 AM  

Like you I think I’m in denial about Christmas being literally just days away!

Wishing you a great reading week

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz 12/17/19, 8:05 AM  

American Dirt should be getting a lot of hype. Like you, I hope it lives up to the hype. It's certainly timely.

Melynda@Scratch Made Food! 12/17/19, 10:05 AM  

With this being our first winter in Montana, yes too much TV! I am starting to transition to an hour before bed sans blue screens, thanks for a great list of books to consider.


bookchickdi 12/18/19, 7:31 AM  

I, too, am in denial about Christmas next week. I have so much left to do! I’m also looking forward to reading American Dirt, I picked it up at Book Expo and it certainly has a lot of hype surrounding it.

Tina 12/18/19, 7:45 AM  

I am beyond that you can watch Dublin Murders. Can’t wait for our library to get it next year . I had thought the same though, even nit watching yet, that they should have concentrated on only one book for broadcast. The Likeness was my favorite in the series.

Yea to another MC Beaton book! American Dirt is indeed timely and I look forward to it.
Can’t believe it’s almost the end of the year!

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