Category Archives: Favorite Authors & Books


sent to me by a dear friend

I just ordered more Linda Howard books. My husband and I are both enjoying them. I’m keeping a list of the ones we have and have read, and ones we have ordered so it makes it easier when I’m trying to order more.

Since we try to watch our money, we buy used paperbacks or the Kindle versions when applicable. I toggle back and forth when I find a book we don’t have, seeing what it costs used on Amazon vs Thriftbooks, buying from both sources.

I feel rich when we have more on the way. :0)

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I Got It, Read It…

forward from a friend

One of the packages that I told you the UPS driver left on our robot on Wednesday to spend the night outside before we found it and another package before the rain started Thursday was the “Abandoned in Death” book by J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) that I pre-ordered in February for when it was available in paperback.

I was in the middle of another book, but dived into my much-anticipated book as soon as I could. Once I started it, I found it very hard to put it down. Life and obligations kept getting in the way, so I found myself last night reading in the living room until early this morning to finish it.

It was like a reunion with old friends you feel as if you haven’t seen in forever. As usual, the ‘crime’ was all encompassing. I can never figure out who the perpetrator is, no matter how much I think about it.

The next book in the series, “Desperation in Death” will come out in paperback in December of this year, and I’ve pre-ordered it. There is another – #56 – “Encore in Death” – that will come out in hardback in February of 2023, and will probably be available in paperback sometime late in the year.

I always feel a bit sad when I’ve read all available paperbacks for awhile. It’s good that she’s such a prolific writer that I have something to look forward to.

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Book Bliss

One of my all-time favorite books is The Help by Kathyrn Stockett.

“The Help is an inspirational, courageous and empowering story about very different, extraordinary women in the 1960s South who build an unlikely friendship around a secret writing project — one that breaks society’s rules and puts them all at risk. Filled with poignancy, humor and hope — and complete with compelling, never-before-seen bonus features — The Help is a timeless, universal and triumphant story about the ability to create change.” ~ Amazon

Kathryn Stockett drops you into the middle of lives you may have known peripherally, but may not have appreciated enough. However much you THOUGHT you knew, you will learn and appreciate more. This book made me laugh aloud. It also made me cry. I was afraid for the risks they were taking and how much they had to believe in the project and trust Skeeter in order to go through with it. It is written with love. You will be a different person when you finish it.

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Enedina Kelty

I’m really enjoying Linda Howard‘s books. I’ve read 7 so far and just ordered 3 more used ones –

  • Up Close and Personal
  • Tears of the Renegade
  • Overload

My good friend Marsha recommended her work to me and I feel as if a whole new world has opened up. My husband decided he wanted to try them, too, and now HE has now read and enjoyed the 4 I bought used. (The other 3 are on my new Kindle.)

You might enjoy her work, too. :0)

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CIA Series


I started a 3-book series by Linda Howard that I received yesterday, all based in some way on the CIA. Linda Howard is a new artist to me, recommended by my good friend, Marsha, and I’m delighted so far. The series of three books is Kill and Tell, All the Queen’s Men, and Kiss Me While I Sleep.

I find her style very readable. I started Kill and Tell last night and was immediately drawn into the story.

If you haven’t read her work, you might enjoy it.

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Book Recommendation

sent to me by a friend

I’m thoroughly enjoying reading another John Grisham book. It’s called, “Sooley” and it’s totally different than any book by Grisham I’ve ever read. It’s about a South Sudanese boy who is trying to better himself and help his family by playing basketball.

I’m not a huge basketball fan, but you don’t need to be to thoroughly enjoy this book. You’ll find yourself pulling for Sooley, tearing up at what is happening with his family and his reaction to it, thoroughly immersed in this sensitive, beautiful book.

I don’t know how it will end, but I consider this one of Grisham’s best books.

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A Day of Food, So Far

I JUST finished getting the ingredients for beef stew in the crock pot for dinner tonight, and eggs hard-boiled. I cleaned the fridge out a bit, too, and am now running the dishwasher, having filled it up already this morning. In a few minutes it’ll be time to fix LUNCH. Too much time around food!

I plan to be lazy much of the rest of the day, unless it actually rains and cools off. I finished a Lee Child book yesterday, Past Tense. It was the usual very well-written Reacher series book. Lee is writing with his son, Andrew, now. I’m not sure what that will do to the quality and flavor of the books.

Today I’ll start enjoying a Grisham book my husband passed to me recently.

Hope you’re staying safe and cool.

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Enjoying Robert B. Parker

Robert B. Parker – Penguin Random House

I have finished re-reading the Jesse Stone series, and the Spenser series. Now I’m re-reading the Sunny Randall series. Once I finish those, there are only a few books left – some wonderful westerns and other stand-alone books.

It makes me a bit sad to be coming to the end of the re-read, but I’m delighted to have the collection so I can enjoy it again whenever I would like.

Some good friends have recommended authors new to me, so I’m looking forward to diving into some new worlds soon. :0)

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Emeshed in the Spenser Series

Petr Vaclavek –

I’m re-reading Hush Money book # 26 (of 40) in the Spenser Series by Robert B. Parker. Re-reading the collection in order gives me a fuller experience, a richer appreciation of his writing style, enjoyment of the evolution of Spenser’s relationships with the other continuing characters, and admiration for his rock-solid beliefs about honor, integrity, keeping your word, finishing the job no matter what the cost.

I feel so lucky to be able to dive into his world, letting my concerns fade, fully relaxing, enjoying escaping for awhile. :0)

Who are your favorite authors and why do you love them?


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I’m really enjoying re-reading my collection of Robert B. Parker books. I read the “Jesse Stone” series again, then moved on to the “Spenser” series. I’m on book #20, I think, “Double Deuce” now. Parker’s writing was so CLEAN. You’re never aware of the way he writes, unless one of the characters is poking fun or making a snide remark. He describes things so you can see or feel them clearly, yet you just ‘absorb’ the characters and situations. I find myself reading along, and then he says something so subtle that it takes me a sentence or two to react. And then I snort, or smile, or both, to the point my husband says, “What.” (He appreciates Parker’s dry sense of humor, too, and so understands with little explanation. )

When I finish reading the collection, I think I’ll start on our collection of Lee Child next, with his books about Jack Reacher. I just read that Lee Child has stopped writing Jack Reacher books and is passing the series to his brother, Andrew Grant. (In the media, I prefer Alan Ritchson in the TV series, rather than Tom Cruise in the movie versions. This is nothing against Tom Cruise, really. Lee Child is so good at getting the reader to ‘see’ Jack Reacher, though, that I laughed aloud when I discovered who would play him in the movies. Alan Ritchson in the TV version seems perfect for the role. I hope they continue the series.)

I would go nuts if I weren’t able to enjoy time reading each day.

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Enjoying ‘Parker Land’

Karen Bellandi

Yesterday I finished re-reading my collection of Robert B. Parker’s “Jesse Stone” series. There are 9 of them written by the author himself. I watch the movies made beyond that – having a huge crush on Tom Selleck – but don’t read the rest.

Today I’ll start re-reading his “Spenser” series. I absolutely love the combination of quiet toughness, competence, humor and wit of Spenser. He has a very low threshold for pomposity, self-importance, and lies. He also has a soft side that melts me into a puddle. You get to know him better book by book, situation by situation. I love it.

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Today’s the Day!

Harma Hommad

Last night I finished re-reading the 52 books that precede this one. Today I’ll dive into my latest paperback in the series, #53 Forgotten in Death. I’ve also ordered the paperback of the NEXT one in the series, Abandoned in Death, that comes out in July.

I feel rich that I have all the books in this series. I’m fascinated by the future New York J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) has created (2050 and beyond), plus the people in it. Homicide detective Eve Dallas lives a very full, intense life. Her character brings out either love and loyalty without bounds or intense hatred. The story has built and built with each book giving us bits and pieces of the real humans who populate it.

You know what I’ll be doing later today. :0)

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About the only thing I don’t mind about being snowed and iced in again is that I have plenty of good books to enjoy.

I’m on book #50 Golden in Death from J.D. Robb’s (Nora Roberts’) In Death series. I’m re-reading the whole series in preparation for enjoying my newest paperback addition, #53 Forgotten in Death. I’ve pre-ordered the next one, #54 Abandoned in Death, which comes out in paperback in July.

The thing I’m particularly enjoying this time through is all the ‘extras’ that wind their way through the series, the poignant things people say and do that define their strength, humanity, vulnerability, love, and more. They make me tear up, adding so much richness to the series.

If we get all the rain/wind/sleet/freezing rain/snow forecast tomorrow, picture me, curled up in my recliner, heat pad on low under me, throw over me, coffee on my warmer beside me, cat in my lap, book in hand, appreciating the luxury of my life.

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The Luxury of Reading

Fiction DB

Series Description

“J.D. Robb’s popular futuristic In Death series features police lieutenant Eve Dallas and her tycoon husband, Roarke. The series is set in mid-21st century New York City and, occasionally, off-Earth. The books are primarily police procedures with a focus on the romantic relationship between Eve and her husband. The first book in the series, Naked in Death, was published in 1995 and the series now includes over 50 titles. Like most mystery series, the In Death books do not have to be read in order, but character relationships do develop over the course of the entire series.”

(I now have the 53 paperback books in the series. The 54th comes out in hard back this month. I was just able to preorder the paperback that will come out the end of July of 2022.)

Most times I get a new one, I re-read all the others, just to immerse myself in her life and that of her co-workers and friends. (I’m on # 41 now – “Devoted in Death.”)

I find her a fascinating combination of strengths and weaknesses. I like the way her mind works, trying to get inside the minds of really bad people who kill others. The victims become ‘hers,’ and she will do whatever is necessary to bring their killers to as much justice as the law will allow. As all of us, she has her quirks and weird fears (such as she is creeped out by dolls). Each of the books brings out something touching and/or personal about Eve, Roarke, their relationship, etc., where she lets us inside a bit more.

I have read that Nora Roberts/J.D. Robb is quite wealthy. I can’t think of anyone who deserves the good things life has to offer more. Long may she reign – and WRITE! :0)

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Definition of Happiness


I pre-ordered the paperback version of “Forgotten in Death,” the 53rd book in the Eve Dallas, “In Death Series” by J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) a long time ago. It will be released the 28th of this month. The 54th book, “Abandoned in Death” will come out in hard back in February of 2022. I will pre-order the paperback of that one, as well.

As I always do, I’m enjoying re-reading the previous books in preparation for diving into the latest for me. I’m on book # 26 – “Memory in Death” now, fully immersed in Eve Dallas’ world, full of dead people that Eve stands for, determined to get justice for each one regardless of the cost to herself. The continuing love story of Eve and the billionaire Roarke is a classic for a reason. The characters are strong, real, quirky, and addicting.

Nora Roberts’ books have helped me through some difficult times. I love to dive into the situations she has created, get to know the characters, fully engrossed in the story.

I have several favorite authors, and my book collection is one of my most prized possessions.

I’m rich in books.

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Nothing is Impossible

I got sick Saturday right after lunch and have done absolutely nothing until now, so I can attest to the truth of this quote by one of my favorites, A. A. Milne.

You hear of people being asked, if they could meet and talk with someone from any time in history, who would it be? My personal list is long, but high on it is A. A. Milne, and his illustrator for the Winnie the Pooh books, E. H. Shepard. What imaginative, creative people! I love the compassion and the rich sense of humor shown in these books, as well. The artwork is so distinctive, simple, yet beautiful. This is one of my favorite quotes –

I’ve been a slug for a day and a half now, so I’ll have to redouble my efforts not to make it my new lifestyle.

Many things clamor for my attention. It will be difficult to choose which to tackle first.

Have a wonderful day, everyone!

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Change in Philosophy

A. A. Milne – E. H. Shepard – Winnie the Pooh – DreamsQuote

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Thoughts on a Wednesday 9-8-2021

My outlook is much more upbeat today.

Since our weather is much more civilized than it has been – only 90 degrees F. today with much less humidity – I’m planning to pull out our tomato plants today. They have spread their vines all over the place, making it impossible to mow or weed whack, and have stopped producing tomatoes, so it’s more than time to get them out. Fresh ripe tomatoes are one of the joys of our lives, so it’s well worth the time and effort to put them in each year. We get spoiled from the color on our plates, the fabulous aroma, and delicious taste for two to even three months each year!

I have a lot to clean up in the yard, particularly since I’ve neglected all but the absolutely necessary with the heat we’ve had, but I’ll try to do a bit each day until things look better around here.

Toronto Star

I have never coveted money, as such, but it would be really nice to never have to worry about it. I’m happy whenever I see someone who has really been successful in this regard due to hard work and providing something people enjoy. I read awhile back that Nora Roberts/J.D. Robb, one of my favorite authors, has a net worth of around $400 million. I couldn’t be happier for her and her family. She has given me so much through her writing over the years, providing entertainment, escape, and challenge. I selfishly want her to live, thrive, and write forever. :0) (I’ve preordered the paperback version of a new J.D. Robb book that will be delivered in December, and she has a newer hardback coming out in February…)

I think you already know that I’m a champion procrastinator, having given myself several awards for it over the years. (Everyone should be good at SOMETHING. :0) ) My latest procrastination is about bookkeeping. I’m TRYING to make myself catch up. I’m several months behind right now. As one of my friends, Maria, suggested about my dieting efforts – that I should break the big goal into doable chunks so it doesn’t seem to intimidating – I’m trying now to say ‘one month at a time,’ and have put the first one on my to-do-list for today, along with the removal of the tomato plants. Fingers crossed I can get it DONE.

After a lot of lightning overnight, we’re having a truly lovely day today. I will finish my blog writing and “have at” my to-do list. Have a great day!

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Yet Another Character-Building Exercise

I wrote recently of keeping priorities straight and focusing on the good happening in the world. That doesn’t keep me from being aggravated that the book I ordered – that was SUPPOSED to ship yesterday – did not.

If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you know that one of my favorite authors is Nora Roberts /J.D. Robb. “Faithless in Death,” the newest paperback in the In Death series by J.D. Robb, was supposed to ship yesterday. I had pre-ordered it, then re-read the 51 previous books in the series to be ready for the new addition.

I received an email from Amazon yesterday, saying the shipment had been “delayed.” No explanation as to why, or when it WOULD be shipped. Arrrgh!

To help myself wait for the new addition, I bought and read her “Sign of Seven Trilogy” – Blood Brothers, The Hollow, and The Pagan Stone.

Patience is not my strong suit. I am TRYING to keep my bubbling personality, but you may be able to hear my teeth gnashing…

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Book Joy

I finished re-reading the 51 previous paperback books in the “In Death” series by J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) and am anxiously awaiting delivery of paperback #52 “Faithless in Death” I think on the 27th of this month.

In the meantime, I started Nora’s trilogy called “The Sign of Seven“, reading Book 1, “Blood Brothers” yesterday. I’ve now ordered Books 2 and 3, which should arrive shortly.

Being able to dive into a well-loved book, or start a new one, is such a quality of life thing for me. I honestly don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t read and write every day.

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Even Longer

A. A. Milne – Winnie the Pooh – DreamsQuote

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Another Good Series


I absolutely LOVE the way that Szilajka Erzsebet uses mixed media for her stone ‘stories.’ Not only does she show great creativity and skill in telling a story with her stone arrangements, making me react emotionally to each one, but she also makes them look beautiful with the background painting. she has also used cardboard (I think) for the books here. I just can’t say enough about her artistry and talent. I love this one, that I call, “The Reading Tree.”

I am in the middle of a new series by Nora Roberts. called, “Chronicles of the One.” It starts with “Year One.” I’m in the middle of the 2nd book in the series, “Blood and Bone.” I have purchased the third book, “Rise of the Magicks.”

As with all of Nora Roberts’ books, I’m having trouble putting her work down and getting anything else done. :0) I love her strong female characters. She surrounds them with ‘real’ people you want to know. She has created a rich world, ripe with challenges, making you root for her success.

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My friend Cathy sent me this photo recently of something she thought my husband could make for me.

This would be truly wonderful. I could have it in the living room, the guest room upstairs, our bedroom, my art room….

Just looking at it makes me want to grab my book, snuggle in, and enjoy.

I would make a couple of additions, though. I would want a light attached on one of the back corners, and a place for me to put my coffee on my coffee warmer on the right side. I would also bring my throw so I could really snuggle in, and maybe catch a nap from time to time!

Right now I’m enjoying Book 2, Ashen Winter, in the series by Mike Mullin. It’s about a 16-year-old boy trying to survive after the world is plunged into the unthinkable due to an eruption of the Yellowstone supervolcano. The series is fascinating. After I finished Book 1 – recommended to me by my husband, I ordered Books 2 and 3 plus an additional smaller book concentrating on one of the main characters, Darla. I love Mike Mullin’s writing. The series is written for teenagers, but the scope of the books engages all ages. The series includes Ashfall, Ashen Winter, the novella – Darla’s Story, and then Sunrise.

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I have told you I’m enjoying re-reading my Robert B. Parker book collection. I’ve finished the Spenser series and the Jesse Stone series, and now I’m re-reading the Sunny Randall series.

I think one of the main characteristics of a great writer is that the reader doesn’t ‘notice’ the writing. You are grabbed from the first sentence and don’t come up for air until the last. If you are distracted by the writing – if you notice flowery phrases or vocabulary, it takes away from the story and the characters.

Robert B. Parker’s writing is so clean. His wit, sarcasm and crisp dialog make me smile, snort, and occasionally laugh aloud. When I finish the Sunny Randall series, there are some other books of his I’ll enjoy again, as well that aren’t part of his ‘main’ series, as such.

When I finish, I will feel a bit sad. I have lots of other books to read, but I’ll have to leave his world until the next time…

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The Gift that Keeps on Giving

Chalres W Eliot –

I have been an avid reader since I was about 5 years old. My mom started teaching me when I was very young. I had looked around my living room, seeing my dad engrossed in a large book about geology, my mom doing the NY Times Sunday Crossword puzzle, and my brother sitting on the couch devouring a comic book. I got more and more frustrated, finally announcing in a loud voice, “I wish to HELL I could read!” After the shocked and appalled silence, my mom joined me on the floor and began to teach me.

The gift she gave me has only grown. The only time I lost my love for reading was when I was in graduate school, working on my Master’s Degree as a reading specialist. I wanted to share my love for reading and learning, but it’s amazing that anyone could come through that program and still love to read. I studied so hard and long, taking one class each semester and three each summer while teaching full time. I found I had lost the ability to read for pleasure, tensely reading – taking mental notes – as though I would be tested on the material when I finished. After a year or so, I finally gave myself permission to just enjoy – and my love for reading returned.

I finished re-reading the “Spenser” series by Robert B. Parker a couple of days ago. I was a bit sad to finish the last one. The writers who have tried to emulate him and extend the series just don’t capture the flavor for me.

Now I’m re-reading his “Jesse Stone” series. I love the character created here, and it was only enhanced when Tom Selleck was chosen to be Jesse Stone in the movie versions.

I hope a LOT of people are enjoying the work of their favorite authors, plus finding new ones, to help them through these challenging times.

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Hang in There!

The Random Vibez

I received this from my SIL yesterday and I’m still smiling. I love it. I had a pretty good, quite birthday yesterday. Apparently I’m a bad one to hold grudges because I still resent being described by ANYONE as “elderly,” no matter how sweetly is it said. If I am with them when they say it, I will bite them in a leg, and I have NOT had my rabies shot.

Our weather is iffy, but I’m trying to replant my elephant ear bulbs. What I’ve read,though, says to wait until all chance of frost is past, and that is April 5th here, so I guess I need to wait a bit longer.

A lot of my daffodils froze, but I have bunches blooming their heads off around the yard. Even my husband remarked about them when we left to go to town yesterday.

This is the group I call “Debbye’s Bouquet.” I had a good friend who died of breast cancer several years ago. True to her nature, at her funeral two barrels were set up at the door of the church. We were asked to grab a handful of daffodil bulbs as we left and to plant them in her memory. I thought that was a truly wonderful idea. Every spring her bouquet comes up, giving me hope.

I’m re-reading “Now and Then” # 35 of 40 in Robert B. Parker’s Spenser series. I have thoroughly enjoyed re-immersing myself in the amazing world he created. I will be a bit sad when I get to the end of the series. Several good, well meaning writers have tried to continue his legacy, but they seem just a shadow, so I don’t try to read them anymore. I’m just feeling very lucky I found the original and have a collection to treasure.

Make your Wednesday a good one.

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The Joy of Reading Robert B. Parker

Robert B. Parker

My husband recommended the Robert B Parker books to me years ago. I think I have all he wrote by himself. He wrote a couple with his wife, Joan, and others are trying to add to his legacy, but I have collected only his.

I’m enjoying re-reading my collection. I started with his “Spenser” series on which “Spenser for Hire,” the TV series, was based. I’m reading #24 “Small Vices.” My husband can always tell I’m reading a Parker book because I tend to snort or laugh out loud at his dry sense of humor. His love for sarcasm is right down my alley. He uses no filters – just comes out with the stuff you wish you had the courage to say, but don’t.

I find his Spenser character fascinating because he is so self-contained, doggedly hard-working, determined to get the answers he wants, and has the will to do what he thinks is right, regardless of the consequences. His deep love for Susan melts me into a puddle. It is all pervasive and has no limit. It’s forever – and joyfully. Who could resist that?

There are only 40 in the series by Parker. I’m reveling in the world he created.

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Robert B. Parker – Spenser Series

Robert B. Parker

“Parker began writing his Spenser novels in 1971 while teaching at Boston’s Northeastern University. Little did he suspect then that his witty, literate prose and psychological insights would make him keeper-of-the-flame of America’s rich tradition of detective fiction. Parker’s fictional Spenser inspired the ABC-TV series Spenser: For Hire.”

I’m enjoying re-reading my collection now. I think there are 40 Spenser books. Ace Atkins is continuing the series, but they seem a pale shadow to me.

It’s been awhile since I re-read the series. I’m snorting at his wonderful sense of humor, his beautiful sarcasm, his honesty and straightforward writing, his great description. Spenser is a complicated character. I find him fascinating.

If you have not discovered this amazing writer, you’re in for a priceless experience.

Frederick Douglass – Ebook Friendly

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Shel Silverstein via Reader’s Digest

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This is my problem no matter WHAT I’m going through.

Right now I’m going through my bookshelves upstairs. I have my permanent collection of books by favorite authors, plus books on art. I really try to concentrate, because I really don’t NEED all these books, but it’s hard to part with any of them.

The latest hard decision was my collection of Janet Evanovich books. She has a really wonderful sense of humor and makes me laugh at the characters she has created plus the situations in which they find themselves. I’ve read them all several times, though, and it is time for them to find new homes.

I listed 47 books on Amazon yesterday and sold 5 of them so far. I picture other people either discovering her for the first time – delighted looks on their faces and laughing – adding to their collection, or plugging in gaps with books they don’t have in the series. It’s a win/win for all of us.

So far I have one empty shelf. I am about to head upstairs to continue my efforts.

I hope that you are surrounded by favorite books, authors who bring you joy.

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Honor Harrington Series


My husband introduced me to the Honor Harrington series by David Weber.  I’m reading this book, which is the 8th in the series. I think there are 6 more.

I love series involving strong women as the central character. Though David Weber is very thorough about describing military details and physics (things I can appreciate only in a vague way and can’t really follow) there is a strong story line and characters you won’t forget. He describes a world and situations that will envelop you and keep you mentally jumping to keep up.

“Harrington, the heroine of the eponymous “Honorverse”, is an officer in the Royal Manticoran Navy (RMN), the space navy of the Star Kingdom of Manticore. She has a genius for tactical command, often overcoming significant odds (and sometimes significant loss of life), which results in her receiving numerous awards and promotions. She is also a martial artist of note.” ~ Good Reads.

Strong women characters make me proud to even imagine sharing the same world. They act as I wish I were able.

This is a good series that you might like.

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