“The Ice Princess,” by Camilla Lackberg

In a Scandinavian seaside village, Alex, is discovered dead in her bathtub, and it is icky. That’s right, I said, icky. This is not a pretty story. The Ice Princess is a dark story with dark characters.

Detective Patrik Hedstrom was my favorite character. He wasn’t perfect, however, I thought the author did a good job creating a detective who knew how to investigate and wouldn’t quit until he solved the crime. He was placed in uncomfortable situations, faced individuals who committed shocking crimes and managed to remain human and likable in the midst of it all.

Erica, is a writer, and was Alex’s childhood best friend. Erica does her own investigation during the course of the story while dealing with problems of her own. As the mystery progresses, Erica and Patrik work together and uncover shocking information about Alex and the people who live in this small, seaside village.

This story grabbed my attention and held it. However, reader be warned, there is profanity in the story, the crime scenes are described in some messy detail and there is moderately described sex.

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“Murder Trims the Tree,” by Deb Baker

So, recently I discovered I needed to read a good comedy, a book that will cause spontaneous laughter. I need Gertie Johnson! I was going to wait until the holiday season to read “Murder Trims the Tree.” However, I knew Gertie was a guaranteed laugh, so, I read this Christmas novella. I was not disappointed. What a hoot!

Gertie and company, Kitty and Cora Mae, are ordered by the court to do community service. So, in the dead of winter, in the U.P. they head for the local assisted living facility to fulfill the court ordered directive.

I was not disappointed. Oh my goodness! Gertie and her friends are quite the characters. Read all the Gertie Johnson Mysteries. Read them in order. LOL!




Cuckoo Clock

Cuckoo clocks are my favorite clocks. I have the old fashioned cuckoo clock, no batteries here, no way. I purchased my cuckoo in Frankenmuth, Michigan. I don’t even remember the year we visited Frankenmuth. I do remember the excitement I felt when I realized I was purchasing my first cuckoo clock. I chose this particular clock because it was the most colorful! I like color. –  Oh my goodness! My clock just cuckooed!!! – Anyway, I digress. After we purchased our cuckoo, we arrived home and mounted it on the wall, we noticed immediately, it cuckoos every thirty minutes. Mmmm. Well, the first night, we didn’t sleep much. The cuckoo woke us every thirty minutes. Oh! When it reached midnight and cuckooed twelve times, we were awake for awhile. However, as the days and the nights passed, the clock cuckooed right into the rhythm of our home. We slept through the nights again!

One day my cuckoo clock died. We searched for a cuckoo clock repair person and found one in Minneapolis. Phone calls were made, e-mails were sent and our cuckoo clock is repaired and mounted on the wall once again. My cuckoo whistles as it cuckoos and the steady tick tick tick of the clock is once again in our home. Thank-you Susan Wood Studio for repairing my cuckoo clock.

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“The Pickwick Papers,” by Charles Dickens

Oh my. Oh my. Oh my. I have not finished reading “The Pickwick Papers,” but I will eventually. I am almost halfway through the book. I stopped and took a breather at Chapter 28. In the past, I’ve read, “David Copperfield” and it is my favorite. I read “The Old Curiosity Shop,” and “Great Expectations.” Without a doubt, “The Pickwick Papers” is the most challenging to read. I will finish it, but, alas, I do not know when. When I finish it, I probably won’t update my blog. So, what you are reading now, is all the words of wisdom (ha!) you’re going to get.

I would say, in a nutshell, “The Pickwick Papers” are the adventures or misadventures of Mr. Pickwick, Mr. Tupman, Mr. Snodgrass and Mr. Winkle. They certainly meet some interesting characters on their travels through London and the countryside of England. If you decide to read it, prepare yourself for a long, slow journey.

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Tales From the Wilderness

vacation2014 021 Of course, after we saw the mama moose and baby moose in the Big Horn Mountains, I was telling everyone I met about our amazing sighting! So, we are driving through Spearfish Canyon – at lunchtime. Rick stopped at an Inn for lunch. It was a nice Inn, with a woodsy, cabin atmosphere. We had a good view of Spearfish Canyon, as we sat at a table by the window. After taking our order, I was showing the waitress’s my picture of mama moose and baby moose. One waitress sighed. The second waitress gazed at my photo and commented on what a good picture it was of a horse and a pig. That’s right –  she did say – a horse and a pig!

I laughed. I looked up at the waitress and said, “That’s a mama moose and her baby moose! We saw them at our campsite in the Big Horn Mountains.”

She responded laughing loudly, “That’s a moose! I thought it was a pig and a horse! Oh my! that is so embarrassing! We don’t have moose around here! I need to look at some pictures of moose!”

Rick and I and the waitress were laughing so hard, we attracted attention. The waitress fled laughing with a red face.

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Do you have a Little Free Library?

FreeLittleLibrary 017 FreeLittleLibrary 010 FreeLittleLibrary 007 I am surprised at myself! This Little Free Library has been such a blessing in my life, including the couple who built it and placed it in this location, why oh why, didn’t I mention it before? This library has been in our neighborhood at least a year – maybe, a couple of months longer than a year. This summer it has been loaded with kids books. Our son and his wife have a foster daughter – well, this little free library has provided her with many enjoyable books! I highly encourage anyone – build one in your neighborhood. FUN! http://www.LittleFreeLibrary.org


“Four Weddings and a Kiss”

“Four Weddings and a Kiss” is a collection of four short western romance stories. They were all good, however, I do have one I liked the best. I normally do.

“Spitfire Sweetheart,” by Mary Connealy is the story of Maizy and Rylan. Maizy isn’t a proper lady! Shocker! She wears britches! Scandalous to say the least. She can ride, rope, shoot and ranch with the best of them. One day Ryan is seriously injured and Maizy nurses him back to health. Well . . . we all know where this is going. “Spitfire Sweetheart” is an enjoyable story. If you love the west and a good romance, this is the short story for you.

“A Love Letter to the Editor,” by Robin Lee Hatcher is a sweet romance. Molly Everton enjoys writing for the local newspaper and she knows the business forward and backwards. Her dad hires Jack Ludgrove as the new editor and Molly doesn’t like it one bit. She wants the position of editor and Jack has to go! Well, Jack is up for the challenge, no problem there at all. This romance made my heart sigh. I thought the author did a nice job writing Jack and Molly’s story.

“A Cowboy for Katie,” by Debra Clopton was my favorite. I don’t recall ever reading a story by this author in the past. Katie Pearl, must rebuild her ranch, after a devastating tornado destroys – well, everything. She can’t rebuild her ranch alone, so she hires Treb Rayburn to help. I really liked Katie and Treb. Katie was so wounded and Treb was so gentle and kind to her. They were meant for each other. Really good story that grabbed my attention and held it. I read it straight through.

“Courting Trouble,” by Margaret Brownley. In a word, hilarious! Grace Davenport is a young widow in trouble. Her son, asks Brock Daniels, an attorney, to take her case. Well, he’s not sure he wants to take the case, until he meets Grace. Laugh outloud funny!

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