Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!

A trip home this weekend will include Halloween birthday wishes for my younger sister who is a Halloween baby.

It also means birthday cake.

Thank heavens the neighborhood had trick-or-treat last weekend. After a week of Halloween treats for library patrons and treat-bags for student workers, the sugar content is bursting at the seams (in some cases literally).

What Your Love of M&M's Says About You

You are energetic and full of inspiration.

You never slow down, and you're constantly leaving people and ideas behind.

You are a true visionary. You are constantly thinking about the future.

You love living, and you stay flexible. You're open to going wherever life takes you.

Monday, October 27, 2008

J.D. Robb: Not one, but two!

Paying for my early morning snacking transgression, sampling candy while filling treat bags for student workers, means I am currently at my desk paying penance with a salad. This is exactly the reason why I buy candy I do not like for the trick-or-treaters. But, I digress.

A Nora's News email permeated my self-induced sugar for with information that two, count them, two new J.D. Robb titles will be released on November 4th; Salvation in Death and Suite 606 (a novella).

"As Salvation in Death opens, the priest at a Catholic funeral mass brings the chalice to his lips--and falls over dead. Eve is determined to solve the murder of Father Miguel Flores, despite her discomfort with her surroundings. It's not the bodegas and pawnshops of East Harlem that bother her, it's all that holiness flying around at St. Christobal's that makes her uneasy. The autopsy reveals that the priest may not have been the man his parishioners had thought. As Eve pieces together clues that hint at gang connections and a deeply personal act of revenge, she believes she's making progress on the case. Until a second murder--in front of an even larger crowd of worshippers--knocks the whole investigation sideways. And Eve is left to figure out who committed these unholy acts--and why."

"Ritual in Death" for Suite 606 was a great deal of fun to write because I worked again with my good pals Ruth Ryan Langan, Mary Blayney and Mary Kay McComas. In this case, as with the ones in "Haunted in Death" and "Eternity in Death," pragmatic, practical Eve brushes up against the supernatural. This time she must pull together what appear to be some very disparate threads in the aftermath of a ritualistic murder." -- Nora's News, 10/27/08

For those who can not wait, myself included, there is a Salvation in Death excerpt on Nora Roberts web site.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Blackbox, by Julie Schumacher.

When Elena's older sister Dora is admitted to the hospital for treatment following an overdose, repercussions reverberate quickly through their small, close-knit family. "'She's okay Mom, it must have been a mistake" (p. 16). The Lindt's struggle to cope with this new reality while simultaneously searching for the best treatment. Elena has lost her sister and, in some ways, her parents as they maintain an everything-will-be-fine facade. Feeling adrift from family and friends, Elena is befriended by Jimmy, a school mate with first hand understanding of what depression can do. Family pressure to keep Dora's illness a secret expand and Elena must choose between honoring her sisterly bond and doing what is best for her sister; truths will out and everyone will need to live with the new reality Dora's illness presents.

I was originally drawn to this title because the author also wrote The Book of One Hundred Truths.While both titles focus on families and truth, Blackbox deals with a topic that is, in many cases, taboo, depression. Elena and her family are dealing with a complex situation to the best of their ability. Mistakes are made and there are no easy answers, but readers will be impressed with the honest, realistic dialogue and reactions of Schumacher’s well-rounded characters. Don't miss reading this one.

Monday, October 13, 2008


Shift, debut novel by author Jennifer Bradbury. Three weeks from high school graduation, a throwaway announcement made on a whim to avoid his mother’s summer job lecture, Chris announces he is going to ride across country with his best friend and fellow bicycle enthusiast Win. As graduation nears, word spreads amongst the senior class and what began as a lark snowballs, their purported trip the stuff of legend. Chris and Win make their metaphorical trip a reality and embark on their journey to Seattle, Washington. Simple in theory, their ride becomes increasingly complex when Win disappears and Chris is left to finish alone, return home, and face the consequences of his friends actions. Not charged in Win’s disappearance, Chris begins college dogged by an investigator searching for Win. Flashbacks reveal the boy’s journey and it becomes obvious, though best friends each has secrets to hide. Both are using the time to find themselves, whoever and where ever that may be.

This book is wonderfully realistic; readers are able to travel along the highway with Chris and Win, meeting interesting characters and locals. But this is not a typical "buddy book," these boys are refreshingly complex. When Win disappears, Chris is left to wonder if that is what he had planned all along and ultimately feels equal parts betrayal and worry. Delightfully crafted, there are many layered nuances and shades of truth, lies, and mystery to hold a reader’s attention until the last page.

Saturday, October 11, 2008