Category Archives: Favorite Authors & Books

Treasure Trove

I finished reading Desperation in Death #55 in the In Death series by J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts). I was feeling a bit down, because the latest in the series, Encore in Death, just came out in hardback at the end of February, so it’ll be quite awhile before I can even pre-order the paperback.

I happened upon one I hadn’t heard of while searching for used books, and discovered that there are actually 19 NOVELLAS in this series! How did I not KNOW that?

Anyhow, I ordered what I could find and read the first book of three novellas yesterday. I’ve started a second one now and am thoroughly enjoying the reprieve of being at the current end of the series.

I’m searching for the rest of the 19 and will order them as soon as I can find them. It’s interesting because other authors are involved, collaborating with Nora Roberts – the highest accolade there would be as a writer, I would think.

I’m a very happy camper, being able to enjoy Eve Dallas’ world awhile longer.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books

Book Number 55

I pre-ordered the paperback several months ago. It came out finally on Dec. 27th and I received it yesterday. I have carefully put in on my desk, waiting for me to enjoy re-reading my way up to diving into the latest installment of the J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) In Death Series, Desperation in Death.

Nora Roberts has created a future world cast with characters that I find down-to-the-ground wonderful. Lieutenant Eve Dallas is a lady who embodies courage, commitment, and determination to be the best, to get justice for people who have been murdered. I couldn’t admire her more. All the people in this series are fleshed out more and more as you read. You feel as if you could walk up to them and start a real conversation, knowing their backgrounds, strengths, and weaknesses, considering them friends.

I’m starting to re-read the 13th book in the series, Seduction in Death, today. The newest one is #55. Nice way to spend part of the new year.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Reading is FUNdamental

Books to Give Yourself and Others

I’ve enjoyed three books lately that I will keep and read over and over. I wanted to share them with you so that you can give yourself a gift, plus – if you feel the way I do about them – you’ll buy and give to others –

The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy

Reminiscent of Winnie the Pooh by A. A. Milne with illustrations by E. H. Shepard, this is a deceptively simple book full of hand-written quiet wisdom and illustrations that grab your heart. Here is a sample –

“I’ve discovered something better than cake.”

“No you haven’t,” said the boy.

“I have,” replied the mole.

“What is it?”

“A hug. It lasts longer.”

This is a good one to keep by your reading chair, where you can pick it up any time your heart needs a lift.


US by Curtis Wiklund

Curtis Wiklund and his wife are professional photographers. His wife participated in a challenge to take one photo a day. While his wife did that, he decided to draw one sketch each day. His subject matter was his marriage – their everyday lives, challenges, and love. His illustrations are heartfelt and his love shines through like a beacon. Some will make you laugh, others will fill your heart, some might make you cry. All are special. Here is a sample –

A beautiful reminder of what sharing your life with someone can be. How strong a bond can be.


How to be HAPPY, dammit – a cynic’s guide to spiritual happiness by Karen Salmansohn

This is a very quick read, but one you find yourself thinking about and absorbing. 44 Life Lessons presented with sass and humor and wit. Ideas that will make you rethink some things you thought you knew, that you believed, that you might not have been aware you believed and lived by. I’ve read it once so far. I smirked. I laughed out loud. And I’ve thought about it since. I plan to read this one again and again so that I can really absorb the breezy wisdom here. I like the way Karen Salmansohn thinks. I’ll go see if she has written other books. Here is a sample –

“Life Lesson # 7 – You — and those you’ve befriended/worked with/slept with – each of you – just like plants – comes with your own unique feeding manual. You each have your own needs and speeds for growth. You must read each person’s instruction manual carefully – then proceed with caution!”


I hope you enjoy these. :0)


Filed under Book - Movie - TV Reviews, Favorite Authors & Books

An Absolutely WONDERFUL Book

This book was delivered yesterday and I love it. It appeals to me the same way the Winnie the Pooh series does – simple, wonderful, heartfelt drawings and deep, meaningful words that resonate long after you’ve read them.

Here’s an example –

This book can be appreciated by young and old. It’s a book to be shared and treasured, read again and again. You can buy it here

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books

This Artist Makes Me Cry

I found an artist whose work makes me tear up and melt into a puddle. His name is Curtis Wiklund and he is actually a professional photographer. He and his wife, Jordan, live in Michigan. They are both professional photographers and can be hired to do wedding photos, etc. He sketches as a hobby, and challenged himself to do a sketch a day for a year while his wife did a photo challenge. He decided to do sketches of himself and his wife doing everyday things. The result is beautiful. The love flows through his sketches and wraps around you. I’m still tearing up after saving several sketches to share with you. You can find samples of his photos, information on hiring him and his wife, and sketches at Curtis Wiklund. You can purchase prints, the book of his sketches, called US (I just ordered it on Amazon), and more.

“Ah, I love her.”

“Back Scratch as Sedative”

“Christmas Tree”

“Happy Anniversary”

“Mao’s Last Dance”

Leave a comment

Filed under Curtis Wiklund Sketches for US, drawings, Favorite Authors & Books, love

The Art of Charlie Mackesy

I’m fascinated by this artist. Charlie Mackesy does incredible drawings, as you can see in the beautiful child reading above. I went to his website to see more after finding this and I’ll be sharing more of his work with you soon.

I also found that he has written and illustrated a book! It’s called The Boy, The Mole, The Fox, and the Horse. You can see details of the book, plus order it on his website or on Amazon. It reminds me fondly of Winnie the Pooh, somehow, (one of the highest compliments I can give) and I loved what I saw. I ordered it a couple of days ago, and will share some of the art with you when I get it.

Charlie Mackesy

Leave a comment

Filed under Charlie Mackesy, drawings, Favorite Authors & Books

“Lovers and Dreamers”

I’m in the middle of a wonderful trilogy by Nora Roberts called, Lovers and Dreamers. The trilogy includes Daring To Dream, Holding the Dream, and Finding the Dream. Three women who were raised together, though one is the daughter of the housekeeper, and one was adopted as a child when her parents died, all have dreams that are quite difficult to achieve. It’s wonderful to see how they challenge each other, support each other, and love each other in their quests. Of course, they each find intriguing men they can’t resist. :0)

Terrific huge trilogy in one book for escape from whatever is bothering you. In reading about these three women, you are encouraged to have your own dreams, as well.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Hobbies, Reading is FUNdamental

Character-Building Exercise – Patience?

I received the paperback The Becoming, Part 2 of the Dragonheart Legacy trilogy by Nora Roberts about a week ago. I reread, The Awakening first, then dived into The Becoming. I finished it and now I wait.

The hardback edition of The Choice is out this month. I don’t know how long I’ll have to wait for the paperback, but I’ll pre-order it as soon as it shows as available to do that.

I’m really caught up in the characters and story of this trilogy and I really don’t want to have to wait to find out what happens. That’s where the character-building comes in. You’d think with as old as I am, I would have developed more by now…

Meanwhile, The paperback edition of Desperation in Death (# 55 in the series) by J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) will be arriving at my door around December 27th, a wonderful Christmas present for me. I may decide to reread all the previous books before the new one comes…

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Reading is FUNdamental

Book Delight!


I preordered a paperback of one of the Nora Roberts’ trilogy The Dragonheart Legacy books SEVERAL months ago.

I had the first one, The Awakening, and loved it. I had preordered the paperback of the second one – The Becoming.

I received it yesterday. I will re-read the first one before I dive into the second.

The third one – The Choice – won’t even be available in hardback until November. I’ll check in December or early next year to see if I can preorder that paperback.

I feel very lucky to be able to look forward to continuing this adventure.

Note: Speaking of lucky – I think I have another J.D. Robb IN DEATH series paperback book arriving at the end of December!

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Hobbies, Reading is FUNdamental

One of my Favorite Poohisms

A. A. Milne – Winnie the Pooh. Illustrated by E. H. Shepard

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Favorite Quotes, Poohisms

Delight on the Way!


Linda Howard writes wonderful books into which I can escape – a priceless thing. I can immediately immerse myself in a world she has created, shedding my concerns, relaxing, and restoring.

Between Thrift Books and Amazon, I can get good prices on used paperbacks. I just bought 6 books online for the price of ONE hardback book. When I buy 4 or more, I can get free shipping from Thrift Books, though they take longer to arrive than if I order from Amazon. I just plan ahead so I don’t run out before I receive my next treasure trove. :0)

I’m saving these books because I know I’ll enjoy reading them again. I have so many I have a list in a spreadsheet on my computer so I don’t mess up and buy a duplicate. I refined my list today by alphabetizing the list, instead of just listing them in the order I’ve purchased them. Upstairs I’m shelving them by publishing year, so I can enjoy her earlier work first when I re-read. I also have any series of books she’s written placed together on the shelves.

I almost lost my love of reading when I was in school. I was forced to read so MUCH, having to regurgitate it in what passes for ‘learning.’ By the time I had my Masters’ Degree as a reading specialist, I read everything as if I would be tested on it, give a synopsis of it, discuss the symbolism, or other such drivel. I taught reading in public schools in Tulsa, OK for eight years and then in my own private reading clinic for another three. My students got me excited about teaching THEM the joy of being ABLE to read, and read for pleasure, but it took ME several years to believe it again for my own reading.

One grateful lady here that I got it back!

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Reading is FUNdamental

Remember When


My SIL told me about “Remember When” – a book written half by “Nora Roberts” and the other half by “J.D. Robb.” I was unaware of this book and so searched, found, and ordered it. I’m reading the first part now.

The synopsis is – Remember When (2003) is a novel by Nora Roberts and J. D. Robb (the author, writing under two of her pseudonyms). The second half of the book is part of the In Death series, taking place between Imitation in Death and Divided in Death. The plot follows a diamond robbery, over a span of 56 years.

I’m not sure whether Nora was trying to introduce more of her readers to her pseudonym J.D. Robb with her In Death series, or was just intrigued by unsolved crimes. I’m finding it fascinating.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Hobbies, Reading is FUNdamental

Never Too Late

Turn the Page

I’m still enjoying my discovery of Linda Howard. She writes sensual thrillers, I guess you would call them. Her characters are strongly drawn, with the main character a strong woman facing character-building/scary situations. I get Amazon and Thrift Books websites up at the same time, seeing what each has to offer on her used books.

I finally finished cleaning out and reorganizing my bedroom bookshelves upstairs (HOORAY!) , and so I now have room for my new collection.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Hobbies, Reading is FUNdamental

One Box

sent to me by a friend

Reading for pleasure is a very personal thing – unique to each individual.

My husband and I don’t even use the same SALT, so it hasn’t surprised me that our reading tastes are so vastly different.

We do agree on a few authors – Robert B. Parker and Lee Child – to name two just off the top of my head. I was surprised, though, that my husband decided to try one of Linda Howard’s books recently. She is a ‘new’ author to me – recommended by a friend – and I enjoy her writing a lot. I’ve just ordered my third ‘tranche’ of used paperback books by her. My husband likes her work, too, and so now we have a new thing so we can keep track.

I have a list on my computer of the books of hers I have ordered and read. We keep the actual books I’ve received on our communal desk area in the middle of the room between our computer areas in our office. They stay there until both of us have read them, and then they find their way upstairs. We have agreed to check with each other before the books go on the stairs to be taken up. :0)

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Hobbies, quality of life, Reading is FUNdamental


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)

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, quality of life, Reading is FUNdamental

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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, quality of life, Reading is FUNdamental

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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books


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)

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books

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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books

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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Reading is FUNdamental

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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Mediterranean Eating Plan + Recipes, Reading is FUNdamental

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)

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Hobbies, quality of life, Reading is FUNdamental

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?


Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Reading is FUNdamental


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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Hobbies, Reading is FUNdamental

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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Hobbies, Reading is FUNdamental

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)

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books


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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Favorite Things, Hobbies, Reading is FUNdamental

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)

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books

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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Reading is FUNdamental

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!

Leave a comment

Filed under Attitude, Favorite Authors & Books

Change in Philosophy

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

Leave a comment

Filed under Favorite Authors & Books, Favorite Quotes, Poohisms