Waters of Eternal Youth ★★★½ by Donna Leon

After attending a dinner party at his mother-in-law's home, Commissario Brunetti is enlisted to scrutinize a likely assault and near drowning of a teenage girl that happened 15 years ago. The girl, Manuela, has grown up but because of the time she was without oxygen, mentally she is only a child without a memory what happened. Her aging grandmother wants to know the truth.

Brunetti cannot re-open the case, which was ruled an accident but starts a private investigation delving into this long ago event.  The twists and turns of what happened and who had information, why the police didn't, and how eventually everything came to light was cleverly crafted keeping the reader searching along with Brunetti.

I have read every one of the books in this series, so far, I'm hoping that a new one will be coming in the future.  I would be terribly disappointed if this was the end of Commissario Brunetti and his adventures in Venice.

Series/ Progress: 25/25
DATE READ: March 24 - March 30
Type of Book e-book
SOURCE: NetGalley


Foolproof: Why Safety Can Be Dangerous and How Danger Makes Us Safe ★★★ by Greg Ip

This isn't the type of book that I would normally read however, it was selected for my Book Club and the title did catch my interest.  That said, the first few chapters made me feel that I was back in Economics class in college and that wasn't pretty. However, as I got into the book I found that the areas that were discussed were extremely  thought-provoking.

The first several chapters dealt with risk involved with money - stocks, bonds, Federal Reserve and how it tries to control inflation and making our assets safer.

Quoting the book I found this part about political interference regarding the changes in bank loan requirements which eventually caused some of the sub-prime mortgage fiasco very enlightening and expect that many Democrats will disagree with what was said.
"Brad DeLong, an economist at the Univ of Calif at Berkeley, who had served in Clinton's Treasury from 1993 to 1995, described many years later why he and his fellow Democrats pushed deregulation (for home loans): "It had been more than 60 years since financial disruption had had more than a minor impact on overall levels of production and employment....The poorer 2/3 of America's population appeared to be shut out of the opportunities to borrow at reasonable interest rates... Depression-era restrictions on risk seemed less urgent, given the US Federal Reserve's proven ability to build firewalls between financial distress and aggregate demand. New ways to borrow and to spread risk seemed to have little downside....it seemed worth trying.  It wasn't."
Financial issues were also low-balled concerning the threat of baby boomers approaching retirement without sufficient savings.

Other areas of interest that were highlighted included:
1.  Football and hockey helmets and how they have changed the amount of risk that players accept
2. anti-lock brakes and seat belts and how they should have made driving safer but may have only increased the risk level that a driver will take   (I found it amusing that New Hampshire is the only state that does not require seat belt usage - their Motto -Live Free or Die.)
3. FDA new drug approval - is faster with higher risk from possibly dangerous drugs better than slower and  less risk that bad drugs will reach the market?
4. Natural disasters and their increasing costs - Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy impacted millions of people and climate change was touted as partially to blame but what about the decision of a growing population to settle and build in areas that are not really conducive to settlement?  If an area is repeatedly wiped out by hurricanes and other powerful natural occurring events, should the government continue to provide subsidies to rebuild?

I kept reading wondering if I had a choice how much of a risk was I willing to take? Would I build my home in a floodplain or near a forest subject to wildfires or on a cliff with regular mudslides?  If my home had been destroyed, would I rebuild in the same place?

It appears that as we increase the safety in our society we are counterbalancing by increasing the risk as well.  Is this a good thing?

I won't say this was a great book, at times it was hard to keep going, but it did give me lots to think about.

DATE READ: March 10 - March 19
Type of Book e-book
SOURCE: Barnes and Noble


Falling in Love ★★★★ by Donna Leon

This, IMHO, has been the best Guido Brunetti installment so far.  We are greeted by a former character, opera singer Flavia Petrelli from the first installment who this time rather than a suspect is being threatened by an unknown admirer.  Very much a psychological thriller, this tale is very well-crafted holding the reader's interest while interjecting touches of levity at extremely tight points.

Series/ Progress: Commissario Brunetti 24/25
DATE READ: March 10 - March 19
Type of Book e-book
SOURCE: NetGalley


The Garden Intrigue ★★★★ by Lauren Willig

Eloise Kelly is continuing her research into the Pink Carnation. While at Selwick Hall a film crew is keeping she and Colin Selwick on their toes.  As for the Pink Carnation timeline an American heiress is tussling with an undercover agent posing as a poet.  Robert Fulton plays an interesting foil supposedly inventing a submarine for Napoleon's fleet.  Both storylines blend well together.

Series/ Progress: Pink Carnation  9/12
DATE READ: March 14 - March 17
Type of Book Audiobook
SOURCE: Public Library


Devonshire Scream ★★★★ by Laura Childs

Theodosia Browning of the Indigo Tea Shop is a witness to a smash and grab at a fancy jewelry show and agrees to try to find the culprit because of the accidental death of her friend's niece.  Drayton is concerned because the Heritage Society is holding an event which will be displaying a Fabergé egg.  Could the thieves plan to strike again? Are others possibly in danger?

Love the tea event background and recipes as well!
Series/ Progress: Tea Shop Mysteries (17/17)
DATE READ: March 8 - March 12
Type of Book ARC
SOURCE: from the author


In Too Deep ★★★ by Jude Watson

Amy and Dan continue to search for the next clue but are beginning to become suspicious of Nellie Gomez, their au pair, after discovering that she has skills that don't seem to go with being a nanny.  Strange relatives  are still popping up all over but Amy and Dan's smarts are still outwitting the nasty adults.  This time they encounter cave spiders and murderous surfers.

Series/ Progress: 39 Clues 6/39
DATE READ: March 10 - March 10
Type of Book Audiobook
SOURCE: Public Library


Murder on Wheels ★★★½ by Lynn Cahoon

Jill's life seems to be settling down, and as the book opens Jill along with her boyfriend Greg are on a geocaching adventure.  Jill meets the club president Kacey and finds out that she is opening a new business in a food truck and she will be serving gluten free treats.  Then she finds that Kacey is the wife of her friend Sadie Mathews' ex-boyfriend, Austin.  Since Sadie is a baker and Austin pilfered several of her recipes, Jill is figuring that Sadie's recipes have end up in Kacey's hands.

When Kacey is found dead, Jill is concerned that the authorities will believe that Sadie has a serious motive and starts her behind the scenes investigation to make sure that the right person is arrested.

I love this series because the characters are lively and the setting is fun.  Looking forward to the next in the series when it comes out later this year.

Series/ Progress: Tourist Trap Mysteries 6/6
DATE READ: March 5 - March 8
Type of Book E-book
SOURCE: NetGalley

By Its Cover ★★★ by Donna Leon

How horrifying to any reader to read of the defacement and theft of rare books even if it is only fiction.  This mystery relates how a special library has discovered that numerous rare books are missing or have had pages cut out.  As Guido Brunetti, a classical reader, endeavors to find the culprit, he uncovers a former priest at the center of the trouble.

Commissario Guido Brunetti continues to enchant this reader, not just with the Venetian flavor of his endeavors against wrong, but his personality which warmly embodies the Venetian culture.

Series/ Progress: Commissario Brunetti  23/25
DATE READ: March 7 - March 8
Type of Book Audio book
SOURCE: Audio stockpile


Foreign Eclairs ★★★★½ by Julie Hyzy

Married life is as unsettled as before for Ollie and Gav.  He's off on a mission and she's trying to stay out of  trouble and hire a new chef.  But try as she might Ollie can't avoid danger.  Mugged on the way home, she is not the only White House staffer having trouble. Peter Sergeant's assistant goes missing and is later found murdered.  Secret Service determine that both instances are related and that Ollie is in great danger.

The danger and how the issues revolve around Ollie will keep the reader on the edge of their seat, permanently!

I was so looking forward to this the next in the White House Chef series but when I found out that it was the last in the series, I put off reading it because I didn't want these characters to end.

This was best in the series so Ms. Hyzy has done Ollie and Gav proud by leaving the reader wanting more.

I haven't read any of Ms Hyzy's other series, but now that Ollie and Gav are going into the sunset, I will hopefully finding characters and stories that are as entertaining and as well written.

Well done Julie Hyzy!  Your books in this series were tremendous!

Series/ Progress: White House Chef  9/9
DATE READ: March 1 - March 3
Type of Book ARD
SOURCE: Barnes & Noble


Treachery in Bordeaux]★½ by Jean-Pierre Alaux

Series/ Progress: Winemaker Detective Mysteries  1/10
DATE READ: February 16 - February 29
Type of Book e-book
SOURCE: NetGalley
I'm not sure whether it was the writing or the translation but I had a very difficult time getting into the story.  It seemed to move rather slowly and didn't hold my interest.  I will revisit at another time to see if I can get through at a later date.


The Cracked Spine ★★★★ by Paige Shelton

Delaney Nichols is laid off from her job at a museum in Kansas and decides that now is the time for her to take an adventure so when she reads an advertisement for a job at a rare book store in Edinburgh she jumps at the opportunity and applies for the job.  3 weeks later she is in Edinburgh, ready for her adventure but not knowing what she's getting involved with.

Delaney's first few days on the job have her searching for a rare Shakespeare folio after the murder of her boss's sister.  The story moves rapidly, IMO, and suddenly Delaney and the reader are faced with the solution.

Being the first in the series, I can see a great deal of room for the continuation of character growth as well as mysterious possibilities.  Definitely looking forward to another in the series.

Series/ Progress: Scottish bookshop mystery 1/1
DATE READ: February 25 - February 29
Type of Book e-book
SOURCE: NetGalley