Sunday, March 29, 2015

Sunday Summary: 29 March 2015

Where I've been reading

Another business trip this week—to Chicago. The corporate travel agent booked me through Charlotte, NC, which meant I had to leave DFW very early in the morning in order to get to Chicago by noon on Monday. But the weather didn't cooperate. Turns out that there was snow in Chicago and they had a major slow-down of traffic into Chicago, so I wound up sitting at the Charlotte airport for 6 hours before we were able to head to Chicago. Needless to say, I arrived in Chicago late in the afternoon—tired and a bit frazzled. BUT, I had lots of time to read while sitting in the airport as well as while in flight.

What I've been reading: Completed this week

Book Cover: Mutant Star by Karen Haber Format: eBook
Source: purchased from Phoenix Pick, November 2014
Completed: 23 March


This third book of Haber's Fire in Winter series introduces the next generation of mutants. Alanna, daughter of Skerry and Narlydda and the twin sons of Melanie and Yosh are now young adults. The twins, Rick and Julian, are as unlike as can be. Julian has manifested mutant powers, particularly telepathy, while Rick is a null like his mother. Everything changes when Rick begins to develop mutant capabilities, unheard of for a null. Not only does he have multiple powers, they are extremely strong. Given that these powers came on very quickly, Rick has little opportunity to learn control. Complicating things is his attraction to Alanna and the opposition of her parents to their relationship.

Book Cover: Sizzle by Julie Garwood Format: eBook
Source: purchased from Amazon, March 2010
Completed: 24 March


It's so much fun to return to a series after a long time. Sizzle is the eighth book in Julie Garwood's romantic suspense series starring members of the Buchanan family. The young men of this family have taken jobs in law enforcement. Each book introduces a new romantic entanglement, not only for the Buchanan men, but also for their sisters, brothers-in-law, close friends, or co-workers. Sizzle introduces Lyra Prescott, roommate with Sidney Buchanan, and FBI officer Sam Kincaid who is asked to guard Lyra when bad guys break into her apartment and hold Sidney captive. There's lots of danger and love blossoms—just what one expects from this series. I can't wait to get my hands on the next book.

Book Cover: Marked by Sarah Fine Format: eGalley
Source: review ARC from NetGalley
Completed: 26 March


Sitting in my TBR backlog was a copy of Marked a new paranormal fantasy by Sarah Fine. Since I need to read and review both Marked and its sequel, I pulled this one out to read this week.

Boston paramedic Cacia Ferry takes on dangerous assignments in a broken and flooded city. Her co-workers don’t know that she has another job ferrying the dead to the Afterlife. Once humans are “Marked” by the Kere, servants of Fate, the powerful Ferrys are called to escort the vulnerable souls to Heaven or Hell.

Cacy's new partner, Eli Margolis, is intensely attracted to Cacy, but distrustful of her rich and powerful family. When Cacy's father is suddenly taken—perhaps before his time—Cacy is faced with the possibility that someone is subverting Fate and making a power play to usurp the powers of the Ferrys. And, it appears that Eli's sister, Galena, is the focus of the power struggle. Galena's biomedical research offers hope of new vaccines against the plagues devastating the city, but fewer deaths mean less income to the Kere who Mark the doomed and the Ferrys who transport their souls to their final destination.

I enjoyed this book except for the explicit sex scenes. The plot is interesting and the characters are appealing. But I'm just not fond of such steamy scenes. I think the book could be just as good (if not better) if it was toned down a bit.

Book Cover: The Organist Wore Pumps by Mark Schweizer Format: eBook
Source: gift from Kiri, October 2014
Completed: 28 March


Police chief Hayden Konig is a lucky man. He’s wealthy, he enjoys his work, he has a loving wife, good friends, and lives in the quaintest, most picturesque town in the North Carolina mountains. With all this going for him, you’d think he’d be satisfied. He’s not. He longs to be a writer, a hard-boiled, noir detective word-slinger worthy of the 1939 Underwood No. 5 sitting on his desk—a typewriter once owned by Raymond Chandler. You’d think a machine like this would help. It doesn’t.

Once again, Hayden Konig is challenged to solve a couple of murders while keeping everything on track in the town of St. Germaine and at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church where he serves as organist and choir director. In this episode, the body of a hitman is found floating in Lake Tannenbaum. Why was he in St. Germaine and did his partner do him in? Hayden has also had to bring in a relief organist after breaking his arm in a car accident. If it weren't for the annual Christmas parade and the upcoming holiday services, he might be downright discouraged.

The Organist Wore Pumps is a delightful addition to Mark Schweizer's Liturgical Mysteries. These books are so appealing for the pure awfulness of the secondary storyline—Konig's mysteries—and the zany adventures that everyone gets up to. It's a laugh every page or so.

What I've been reading: In progress

Book Cover: The Secret History of the Mongol Queens by Jack Weatherford As expected, I'm still listening to The Secret History of the Mongol Queens. I listened to a couple of hours while driving from my house to my son's house on Saturday. I will be driving from Jackson, MS, to Birmingham, AL, on Wednesday and expect to listen to this book for the three and a half hours of that trip.

Book Cover: The Countertenor Wore Garlic by Mark Schweizer The Countertenor Wore Garlic is set ten months after the previous episode and it's Halloween. On the evening of the Halloween Carnival, a flashmob descends on St. Germaine. Hundreds of visitors are participating in the Zombie Walk. Police Chief Hayden Konig has his hands full solving a murder as well as coping with an interim priest at St. Barnabas and writing yet another dreadful noir mystery.

This Week on the Blog

All the books I've read this week have come from my TBR stack, as I am participating in the Take Control of your TBR Pile Challenge, hosted by Kimba at The Caffeinated Book Reviewer. The month is almost over and I've read 16 books so far. It's been fun to clear out some of the backlog, but I'm looking forward to the freedom to return to the library in a couple of days.

  1. Stacking the Shelves (25)
  2. Review: Shades of Earth


And, as usual, I'm linking up with The Sunday Post, hosted by Kimba @ The Caffeinated Book Reviewer.

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on the blog, showcase books and things received. Share news about what is coming up on the blog for the week ahead.


  1. Hey, you were in my state though I'm in the middle near Greensboro instead of down by Charlotte. :) Have a great week!

    1. With my travel schedule, I'm likely to change planes in Charlotte every month or so. I'll try to remember to wave next time I fly over!