Ordinary Grace ★★★★ by William Kent Krueger

This was a well-written book that tells of the summer of 1961 in a small town where 3 deaths affected a great many people.

First we have a small boy who was hit by a train, second a homeless man dying under the railroad trestle and last a young girl murdered, found also near the railroad tracks.

Frank Drum the main character was a friend of the young boy, found the homeless man, and was the brother of the murdered girl.  The troubles that he suffered that summer trying to understanding what had happened is beautifully chronicled  and carries the reader onward to a satisfying conclusion.

DATE READ: Sept 22 - Sept 26
Type of Book e-book


Coolidge ★★★½ by Amity Shlaes

This was a detailed biography of our 30th president and though at the beginning it was a bit over detailed, causing it to seem sluggish, once the political issues of the day surfaced it truly took my interest.

A well-researched book, Calvin Coolidge was apparently very reserved which earned him his name of Silent Cal but he was determined to maintain his New England roots and brought fiscal responsibility wherever he served.

As the Governor of Massachusetts, he was in office when the police force in Boston decided to strike for better wages and his resolve to not cave in earned him national recognition and the Vice Presidential bid in 1920 with Warren Harding.

After Harding's unexpected death, and exposure of the Teapot Dome affair, Coolidge worked diligently to restore the trust in government.  He also attempted to balance the budget, reduce unnecessary spending, and cut the size of the Federal Government.

"Coolidge believed that immigrants should come only if the United States could absorb them and only if they were prepared to make an effort to assimilate."  He also believed "that citizens must know their country and learn its language to become good citizens."

The Wall Street Journal's obituary of Calvin Coolidge in 1933 read :

“….In due time, the good fortune of the United States to have had such a man as Calvin Coolidge in just the years he filled the office will be more clearly realized than it has yet been."

After reading this book I regret that so many of our current citizens are unaware of this man and his endeavors to make our government what it should be.

Too bad that the current candidates can't learn from his example.

DATE READ: April 29 - Sept 22
NO. OF PAGES: 1007
Type of Book e-book
SOURCE: Public Library


Silenced by Syrah ★★★½ by Mchele Scott

Nikki is overseeing the opening of the new restaurant, resort and spa connected with Malveaux winery but things get a bit messy when the chef is found dead at the spa in an apparently locked room.  Nikki doesn't realize but she is in danger too not just from the killer but the men in her life may be breaking her heart.

I really like this series set in Napa Valley (one of my favorite places).  The characters need to continue to evolve while keeping the mysteries coming.

Series/ Progress: Wine Lovers Mystery 3/7
DATE READ: Sept 10 - Sept 11
Type of Book ARD
SOURCE: Public Library


Murder in the Secret Garden ★★★★ by Ellery Adams

Storyton Hall is hosting a retreat for the Medieval Herbalists and a wedding for family of one of its members.  Along with those festivities the newest  merchant in town is hosting a duck race on the river where the ducks are named and dressed for literary characters.  Sounds like loads of fun until Jane finds one of her guests floating face down in the river.

The herbalists are all experts in poisons so Jane has to find out who is responsible before anymore of her guests leave permanently.

I love the setting of this series.  I so wish that there really was such a hotel, I think I would book a room quickly, even if there were unnatural deaths occurring.  Just sounds like a peaceful place to visit.

Series/ Progress: Book Retreat Mystery 3/3
DATE READ: Sept 6 - Sept 9
Type of Book e-book
SOURCE: Barnes & Noble


The Champagne Conspiracy ★★★ by Ellen Crosby

Lucie Montgomery and her winemaker/beau, Quinn, have decided to expand their offerings and delve into the making of champagne/sparkling wine.  However, while working on the development they are dragged into a conspiracy by one of Quinn's distant relatives and their investigation into the details of a long ago family member's prove dangerous because of historical implications.

I love this series because the characters are well developed and the setting is very well researched. (I know because I live nearby.) And of course, I just love wine!

Series/ Progress: Wine Country Mystery 7/7
DATE READ: Sept 2 - Sept 6
Type of Book e-book
SOURCE: NetGalley


Picture Miss Seeton ★★★ by Heron Carvic

The re-release of this 50 year old series was a delight.  The reader is immediately thrown into the arms of Miss Seeton, a retired art teacher who has inherited a cottage in a rural area who in celebration goes to the opera before leaving for her new home.  Little does she know that on leaving she will involve herself in a dangerous situation that will follow her to her new home.

Miss Seeton is a mix of Jane Marple and Emily Pollifax wielding her umbrella as well as D'Artagnan his sword.  The inhabitants of Plummergen village kept this reader laughing throughout. I look forward to her next adventure.

Series/ Progress: Miss Seeton  1/5
DATE READ: Aug 31 - Sept 1
Type of Book e-book
SOURCE: NetGalley