24. November 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Drama, Fiction, Mystery, Pamela, Thriller/Suspense

House Rules by Jodi Picoult, read by Pamela, on 11/14/2013

house rulesWith Asperger’s syndrome, teenager Jacob Hunt is unable to have the same kind of social life other boys his age have. However, like other kids with AS, he has honed in on one particular interest: forensic analysis. He normally shows up to crime scenes and helps solve the case, but this time he is the prime suspect.  When a murder leads police to question Jacob, they interpret his AS symptoms as a sign of guilt and cast a very public spotlight on Jacob and his family.

The characters are well developed and intriguing to listen to.  Picoult is known to research her topic thoroughly which helped with understanding Asperger’s syndrome and the main character.  A very interesting story.

31. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Fiction, Pamela, Romance

Secrets by Jude Deveraux, read by Pamela, on 10/30/2013

secretsHaving harbored an unrequited love for a man she met in childhood, Cassandra impulsively breaks an engagement to become the now-widowed man’s nanny, but realizes that her chance for winning his heart is threatened by dark secrets.

A cute little romance with lots of secrets and mystery sprinkled throughout.

28. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Fiction, Pamela, Romance, Women's Fiction (chick lit)

Yankee Doodle Dixie by Lisa Patton, read by Pamela, on 10/24/2013

YankeeIn “Yankee Doodle Dixie” Leelee Satterfield returns to Memphis, Tennessee, hoping to start life over after the Vermont debacle of a year ago with ex-husband Baker.  After landing a job she thought she’d fit right into and oohing and aahing over a rock star, as well as going to New York to spend a weekend with him, Leelee finally decides to do what made her a success in Vermont.  She rejuvenates the Peach Blossom Inn.  And, just in time, she finds the ‘perfect’ chef to make her Memphis restaurant a Yankee Doodle Dixie success.

This sequel to “Whistlin’ Dixie in a nor’easter” does not disappoint.  The southern dialogue, Leelee’s best girlfriends, and the situations they get into keep up the drama that the first installment of this series delivered with wit and charm.  It’s a light and entertaining read with laughs throughout.

01. October 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Pamela

Whistin' Dixie In A Nor'Easter by Lisa Patton, read by Pamela, on 09/29/2013

whistlin dixieDripping with Southern charm and feisty conversation, this tale about a Southern belle and her husband operating a quaint Vermont inn is one laugh after another.  Leelee Satterfield, along with her two daughters, follows husband Baker to Vermont where his dream to operate a quaint inn and restaurant goes awry.  Leelee is left to run the inn by herself and does so with a fierce determination when facing a hefty mortgage and the desire to make the inn ‘a go’ on her own so she can eventually return to her beloved Memphis, Tennessee.

She reshapes the inn and restaurant in her own Southern style, with a little help from her Memphis girlfriends.  Leelee realizes she can handle just about anything the Vermonters can throw at her.

And, just so you know, the South does not have a monopoly on “characters”; you’ll discover that once you meet Helga, Rolf, Roberta, Jeb and George Clark.  These characters will keep you in stitches throughout the entire book.

I listened to the book on CD, but it’s hilarious whether you read or listen.

The next installment in the Dixie series is Yankee Doodle Dixie.  Check it out.

27. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Adult Books, Fiction, Mystery, Pamela, Thriller/Suspense

12th of Never by James Patterson, read by Pamela, on 09/26/2013

12th of neverA week after giving birth, Lindsay Boxer is investigating two cases: a grisly murder where the main suspect is an NFL player and an eccentric professor who thinks his dreams of a murder are real. Will Detective Lindsay Boxer be pushed to breaking point? An eccentric professor walks into Lindsay’s homicide department to report a murder that hasn’t yet happened. A convicted serial killer wakes from a two-year coma. He says he’s ready to tell where the bodies are buried, but does he have a much more sinister plan in mind? Lindsay doesn’t have much time to stop a terrifying future from unfolding. But all the crimes in the world seem like nothing when she is suddenly faced with the possibility of the most devastating loss of her life.

16. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Humor, Mystery, Pamela

Murder with Peacocks by Donna Andrews, read by Pamela, on 09/14/2013

murder with peacocksHectic plans for three family weddings in one summer are made even more hectic by murder. A bridesmaid three times over, for her best friend, her sister-in-law to be, and her mother, Meg Langslow returns to the little Virginia town in which she grew up to help arrange the events.  I enjoyed getting to know the characters and watching as craziness ensued.  From beginning to end, this is a hilarious book.  I’m looking forward to the next installment.

16. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Mystery, Pamela

11th Hour by James Patterson, read by Pamela, on 09/15/2013

11th hourWhen millionaire Chaz Smith is mercilessly gunned down, Lindsay Boxer discovers that the murder weapon is linked to the deaths of four of San Francisco’s most untouchable criminals. Then she’s called next to the most bizarre crime scene she’s ever witnessed: two bodiless heads elaborately displayed in the garden of a world-famous actor.

11. September 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Mystery, Pamela

10th Anniversary by James Patterson, read by Pamela, on 09/04/2013

10th anniversaryDetective Lindsay Boxer’s long awaited wedding celebration becomes a distant  memory when she is called to investigate a horrendous crime: a badly injured  teenage girl is left for dead, and her newborn baby is nowhere to be found.  Lindsay discovers that not only is there no trace of the criminals, but that the victim may be keeping secrets as well. At the same time, Assistant District Attorney Yuki Castellano is prosecuting the biggest case of her life, a woman who has been accused of murdering her husband in front of her two young children. Yuki’s career rests on a guilty verdict, so when Lindsay finds
evidence that could save the defendant, she is forced to choose. Should she trust her best friend or follow her instinct? Lindsay’s every move is watched by her new boss, Lieutenant Jackson Brady, and when the pressure to find the baby begins interfering with her new marriage to Joe, she wonders if she’ll ever be
able to start a family.

28. August 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Drama, Fiction, Pamela, Romance

The great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, read by Pamela, on 08/21/2013

The great Gatsby is one of the great classics of twentieth-century literature.gg

This exemplary novel of the Jazz Age has been acclaimed by generations of readers. The story of the fabulously wealthy Jay Gatsby and his love for the beautiful Daisy Buchanan, of lavish parties on Long Island at a time when The New York Times noted gin was the national drink and sex the national obsession, it is an exquisitely crafted tale of America in the 1920s.

28. August 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Pamela

One Summer by David Baldacci, read by Pamela, on 08/25/2013

one summerJack, terminally ill and preparing to say goodbye to his family, has a miraculous recovery after his wife is killed in a car accident and struggles to reunite his family at her childhood home on the South Carolina oceanfront.

This was a great story, easy to read, but a clincher toward the end.

28. August 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Mystery, Pamela, Thriller/Suspense

9th Judment by James Patterson, read by Pamela, on 08/20/2013

9th judgmentA young mother and her infant child are ruthlessly gunned down while returning to their car in the garage of a shopping mall. There are no witnesses, and Detective Lindsay Boxer is left with only one shred of evidence: a cryptic message scrawled across the windshield in blood red lipstick.

The same night, the wife of A-list actor Marcus Dowling walks in on a cat burglar who is about to steal millions of dollars worth of precious jewels. In just seconds there is an empty safe, a lifeless body, and another mystery that throws San Francisco into hysteria.

Lindsay spends every waking hour working with her partner Rich–and her desire for him threatens to tear apart both her marriage and the Women’s Murder Club. Before Lindsay and her friends can piece together either case, one of the killers forces Lindsay to put her own life on the line–but is it enough to save the city?

28. August 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Mystery, Pamela, Thriller/Suspense

8th Confession by James Patterson, read by Pamela, on 08/16/2013

8th confessionWhen a preacher with a message of hope for the homeless is found brutally executed, reporter Cindy Thomas knows the story could be huge. Probing deeper into the victim’s history, she discovers he may not have been as saintly as everyone thought…

Rich, beautiful, and powerful, Isa and Ethan Bailey were living in the spotlight as San Francisco’s perfect couple–until they are found dead in their luxurious home.

As the hunt for two criminals tests the skills of the entire Women’s Murder Club, sparks begin to fly between Detective Lindsay Boxer and her partner, Rich Conklin, making it difficult to stay focused on the case. The electrifying new chapter in the Women’s Murder Club series, THE 8TH CONFESSION serves up the mile-a-minute twists that only James Patterson can deliver.

12. August 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Mystery, Pamela

7th Heaven by James Patterson, read by Pamela, on 08/09/2013

7th heavenA terrible fire in a wealthy suburban home leaves a married couple dead and Detective Lindsay Boxer and her partner Rich Conklin searching for clues. And after California’s golden boy, Michael Campion has been missing for a month, there finally seems to be a lead in his case–a very devastating lead.

As fire after fire consume couples in wealthy, comfortable homes, Lindsay and the Murder Club must race to find the arsonists responsible and get to the bottom of Michael Campion’s disappearance. But suddenly the fires are raging too close to
home.

Frightened for her life and torn between two men, Lindsay must find a way to solve the most daunting dilemmas she’s ever faced–at work and at home.

 

30. July 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Drama, Fiction, Mystery, Pamela · Tags:

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, read by Pamela, on 07/30/2013

gone-girl-book-cover-med2-23664_186x186Marriage can be a real killer.
One of the most critically acclaimed suspense writers of our time, New York Times bestseller Gillian Flynn takes that statement to its darkest place in this unputdownable masterpiece about a marriage gone terribly, terribly wrong. The Chicago Tribune proclaimed that her work “draws you in and keeps you reading with the force of a pure but nasty addiction.” Gone Girl‘s toxic mix of sharp-edged wit and deliciously chilling prose creates a nerve-fraying thriller that confounds you at every turn.
On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media–as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents–the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter–but is he really a killer?
As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet?

29. July 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Humor, Pamela

Rococo by Adriana Trigiani, read by Pamela, on 07/27/2013

rococoNew York Times bestselling author Adriana Trigiani, beloved by millions of readers around the world for her humor, warmth, and captivating storytelling in the Big Stone Gap trilogy and Lucia, Lucia, takes on love, lust, tricky family dynamics, and home decorating in Rococo, the uproarious tale of a small Italian American town poised for a makeover it never expected. Bartolomeo di Crespi is the acclaimed interior decorator of Our Lady of Fatima, New Jersey. To date, Bartolomeo has hand-selected every chandelier, sconce, and ottoman in OLOF, so when the renovation of the local church is scheduled, he assumes there is only one man for the job. From the dazzling shores of New Jersey to the legendary fabric houses of New York City, from the prickly purveyors of fine art in London to luscious Santa Margherita on the Mediterranean coast of Italy, Bartolomeo is on a mission to bring talent, sophistication, and his aesthetic vision to his hometown. Trigiani’s glittering mosaic of small-town characters sparkles: Bartolomeo’s hilarious sister, Toot, is in desperate need of a postdivorce transformation–thirteen years after the fact; “The Benefactor,” Aurelia Mandelbaum, the richest woman in New Jersey, has a lust for French interiors and a long-held hope that Bartolomeo will marry her myopic daughter, Capri; Father Porporino, the pastor with a secret, does his best to keep a lid on a simmering scandal; and Eydie Von Gunne, the chic international designer, steps in and changes the course of Bartolomeo’s creative life, while his confidante, cousin Christina Menecola, awaits rescue from an inconsolable grief. Plaster of Paris, polished marble, and unbridled testosterone arrive in buckets when Bartolomeo recruits Rufus McSherry, a strapping, handsome artist, and Pedro Allercon, a stained-glass artisan, to work with him on the church’s interior. Together, the three of them will do more than blow the dust off the old Fatima frescoes–they will turn the town upside down, challenge the faithful, and restore hope where there once was none. Brilliantly funny and as fanciful as flocked wallpaper, filled with glamorous locales from New Jersey to Europe, from Sunday Mass to the American Society of Interior Designers soirée at the Plaza Hotel,Rococois Trigiani’s masterpiece, a classic comedy with a heart of gold leaf.

22. July 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Biographies, Children's Books, Pamela

Maria von Trapp: Beyond the Sound of Music by Candice F. Ransom, read by Pamela, on 07/22/2013

von trappAnyone who has seen The Sound of Music knows how Maria von Trapp’s life began–but what happened after the final scene? Discover what Maria’s life was like after fleeing Nazi-occupied Austria for America. With intriguing facts about her life in the nunnery, her romance with Captain von Trapp, their ten children, and their singing careers, this inspiring story reaches beyond The Sound of Music–and reveals the courage and determination of a kind, energetic, and very real woman.

I watch the “Sound of Music” every winter, but did not realize how much of a life Maria von Trapp lived after the movie ended.  A wonderful read for young and old.

26. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Pamela, Romance

Full Bloom by Janet Evanovich, read by Pamela, on 06/26/2013

index[2]The temperature’s on “sizzle” again in Beaumont, South Carolina, where peach trees are in season and ripe for the picking. So is its newest entrepreneur, Annie Fortenberry, a divorcee who inherited her grandmother’s Queen Ann mansion (and its wacky handyman Erdle Thorney). According to a local psychic, she also inherited a spirit from its glory days as a brothel – not the kind of publicity the Peach Tree Bed & Breakfast needs if it’s hosting millionaire Max Holt’s upcoming wedding! If rumors of x-rated ghosts aren’t stressful enough, Max’s new partner has arrived with an eye on Annie’s master suite. On the inside Wes Bridges may be corporate, but on the outside he’s leather and denim, sporting a two-day beard, straddling a Harley, and sending the B&B’s testosterone level through the roof. Annie’s cool demeanor may be dropping as fast as Wes’s jeans, but leave it to her ex to dampen the passion! His body’s been discovered buried on the grounds along with a stash of illicit love letters and a photograph of one of the town’s most prominent married ladies. Wrapped up in a murder plot, Annie must find the killer, save her own neck, and get back to where she was – wrapped up in Wes’s strong loving arms…

26. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Inspirational, NonFiction, Pamela

Help Thanks Wow by Anne Lamott, read by Pamela, on 06/18/2013

help thanks wowAnne Lamott has created a concise explanation of prayer. In three essential
prayers she shows how to ask for assistance from a higher power, how to
appreciate the good things in life and how to feel awe about the surrounding
world. These prayers will help people to achieve a feeling of serenity and get
through the day without undue stress. Lamott recounts how she came to these
insights, what they mean to her and how they have helped others. Insightful and
honest, this is the everyday faith book that will help all who read it.

13. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Pamela

A Step of Faith by Richard Paul Evans, read by Pamela, on 06/12/2013

step of faith

Life is not lived in the long, downhill stretches of expressways, but in the obscure, perilous trails and back roads where we stumble and feel our way through the fog of our unknowing. Life is not a run. It is just one step of faith after another.

Alan Christoffersen lost his heart when his wife was killed in an accident almost one year ago. He lost his trust when his business partner stole his advertising business. He lost his home when the bank took his house. So Alan decided to leave his painful memories behind and walk from Seattle to the farthest point on the map, Key West, but in St. Louis, he is forced to stop.

Because his severe vertigo is diagnosed as the side effect of a brain tumor, Alan must go to Los Angeles for treatment. He is surrounded by those who care most for him: his father, who is happy to have Alan back in his childhood home; Falene, who has been by his side through his most difficult times; and Nicole, who helped him recover from a mugging in Spokane. One by one, Alan alienates them all, and he resumes his journey in angry loneliness. The people he meets as he walks the dusty southern back roads have lessons to teach Alan about accepting love. He just has to have faith that life can be worth living again; and that the woman he rejected will be willing to forgive him.

13. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Humor, Pamela

Diary of a Mad fat Girl by Stephanie McAfee, read by Pamela, on 06/12/2013

diary of a mad fat girl

Graciela “Ace” Jones is mad-mad at her best friend Lilly who cancels their annual trip to Panama City for mysterious reasons; at her boss Catherine for “riding her ass like a fat lady on a Rascal scooter;” at her friend Chloe’s abusive husband; and especially at Mason McKenzie, the love of her life, who has shown up with a marriage proposal one year too late. Ace is never mad, though, at her near-constant companion, an adorable chiweenie dog named Buster Loo.

Ace’s anger begins to dissipate as she takes matters into her own hands to take down Chloe’s philandering husband-and to get to the bottom of a multitude of other scandals plaguing Bugtussle, Mississippi. Then, she starts to realize that maybe Mason deserves a second chance after all.

With a sharp and distinctive voice, Stephanie McAfee delivers a hilarious and fast-paced tale about Ace Jones and her two best friends-thick as thieves and tough as nails-navigating Southern small-town politics and prejudices, finding love, and standing up for each other all the way.

This was a hilarious book and I recommend it to those who like complete and shear honesty.  I listened to it every evening while cooking dinner and found myself laughing often – I’m surprised my family did not question me as to what was so funny.