What We Are Reading- June

It’s that time of the month again when we share what we’ve been reading lately! So grab a pencil and paper and be prepared to add to your already towering TBR piles. (Because, y’know, one can never have too many good books at hand!)

Christina: GIRL, GODDESS, QUEEN by Bea Fitzgerald – If you like Greek myths and tales of the gods of Olympus, this book is for you! It’s a YA fantasy re-imagining of the story of Hades and Persephone, and it kept me spellbound throughout. According to the original tale, Persephone, the sweet daughter of the goddess Demeter, was kidnapped by Hades, King of the Underworld, and tricked into wanting to remain in his realm, but in this retelling, the story is quite different. Here, Persephone is no longer portrayed as a meek little maiden, but a girl who knows her own mind and is a lot stronger than she (and everyone else) thinks. Her mother and father – Zeus, king of all the gods – are planning on marrying her off to the highest bidder, but Persephone wants no part of this. She’s always been terrified of marriage and the thought of being tied to some smug Olympian god she hasn’t even chosen herself is abhorrent to her. So desperate is she to escape this fate that she jumps into the Underworld and claims sanctuary/hospitality – xenia – from Hades. What she hadn’t expected – nor he for that matter – was the undeniable attraction between them, and the unlikely friendship that develops. Hades is rude, sexy and arrogant, but also kind, and he’s the only person who’s ever actually listened to what Persephone wants. When he proposes a marriage of convenience, how bad can it be? [This book won the RNA’s Fantasy Romantic Book of the Year last month – well deserved!]

NOT IN LOVE by Ali Hazelwood – This is another of Ms Hazelwood’s signature stories featuring a STEM heroine who works as a biotech engineer in the field of food science. She’s brilliant at what she does, but socially awkward with very few friends and no romantic relationships – ever. (I guessed she was autistic or on the spectrum somewhere but this is never actually spelled out in the book). When she meets the hero after a match-up on a dating app, there is instant chemistry and he gets her like no one else ever has. She finds herself breaking her own rules for him, while they both try to fight the attraction. They’ve been hurt in the past (in different ways) and are reluctant to trust, but they can’t seem to stay away from each other. Can they learn to love? Or is their baggage too much? I really enjoyed this story and found it fascinating, especially the way the hero allows and encourages the heroine to be exactly who she is without trying to change her. It’s very spicy and explicit – the author herself calls it erotic romance – but the underlying story is wonderful so I didn’t mind that. Highly recommended!

Finally I have to mention THE SUMMER SWAP by Sarah Morgan – Following on from Nicola’s endorsement last month, I want to add mine. As always Ms Morgan has written a fabulous story featuring three generations of women, all with their own problems and dilemmas. They have come to a turning point in their lives where they must choose how to go forward. Changing career path when you know what you’re currently doing is destroying you emotionally, moving forward after grief, and dealing with betrayal are some of the themes covered. I read this in one sitting and now want to read it again!

Pat: THE MOSTLY TRUE STORY OF TANNER AND LOUISE, by Colleen Oakley: I read this while traveling and couldn’t immediately jot down my review notes, so I’m relying on the book description. I just know I loved the book so much, I remembered to write this once I got home. The writing dragged me into the crazy story and didn’t let go, which is highly unusual for me. Basically, it’s the story of a college dropout and an eighty-four-year-old woman whose grown children believe she can no longer take care of herself. Her children really, really don’t know her. This grandma packs a lot of guts and ingenuity, and surprisingly, the depressed, video-playing nanny assigned to take care of her learns that there is more to life than staring at a TV.
Together—if they can outrun the mistakes of their past—they share the greatest adventure of their lives.

THE BANNED BOOKSHOP OF MAGGIE BANKS by Shauna Robinson: Obviously, bookshops are trending. Every other book I pick up includes one. They’re even better than small towns because we can put all the people in one building (oh wait, I’m doing that with the Gravesyde Priory series—with a manor library, oops). So the bookshop in this story is practically a museum for the small town of Bell River, founded on the writing of the famed author no one has ever heard of, Edward Bell. Needless to say, the shop is dying since it doesn’t sell any book written after the author’s death in 1968. Maggie, the book’s heroine is recruited to run the shop while the owner takes maternity leave. Maggie doesn’t read much. She loves talking to people and creating fun—the exact opposite of how the Bell Society’s operator sees his operation. Maggie is pretty much fireworks and confetti in a graveyard. There’s a romance, with a guy so strait-laced he can’t unbend. The plotline is straight up obvious. But the characters and events are so much fun, who cares? Predictability can be reassuring. So just step into Bell River and let Maggie lead the way…

Nicola: This month I’ve had a scramble to put together some sample
 chapters for a publisher of historical non-fiction, so my reading has slowed 
right down. However, after last month’s WWR, I downloaded THE CORNISH WEDDING MURDER by Fiona Leitch that Anne had recommended and thoroughly 
enjoyed it. I love a cozy mystery and really enjoyed the dynamic between the 
ex-Metropolitan police officer who now runs her own catering company, and
 the local detective. This was a fun read and I’m definitely going to get the 
rest of the series.

In a similar vein, I also very much enjoyed MANUSCRIPT MYSTERIES AT THE ROBIN HOOD CLUB by Jennifer Ash. It’s set at a Robin Hood
 Club fan convention where the guests have come to chat about their love of
 all things Robin and to listen to the special guest speaker, our heroine
 Harriet Danby, writer of a hit TV series called Return to Sherwood. But then a previously-unseen medieval ballad about Robin turns up and one of the fans
 goes missing and Hari joins forces with the cute police officer Inspector 
Danny Shaw to try to find out what is going on. This is such a clever story
that weaves in fun stuff about Robin Hood (and reminds me of how much I 
loved the TV show Robin of Sherwood!) with a cozy mystery and a very
satisfying cast of characters.

Next up on my TBR pile is UNDER YOUR SPELL, a romcom by Laura Wood involving
 a heroine looking to re-start her life after several disasters, and a
world-famous, off-limits rock star. I’ve adored all of Laura’s YA books and
 got into reading her quite a few years ago. She writes beautifully and the 
romance is always very romantic indeed. This story sounded cute and I bought
it on the basis of one line on the cover: “She wants three things. He isn’t
 one of them.” I’ll let you know how it went next month!

Anne: As a result of my credit card being hacked, I’ve been locked out of amazon for several weeks now, and am my wits end as to how to get my account un-frozen. So I haven’t read any new books this month, and have been rereading books instead. So I’ve reread some old Heyers — The Talisman Ring, Faro’s Daughter, The Grand Sophy, and more. Rereading Heyers is  like catching up with old friends.

Then I reread Sarina Bowen’s brilliant “new adult” series —The Ivy Years— about young people in their first few years of university, and living away from home. Really excellent.

I reread Sophie Kinsella’s The Burnout, and enjoyed it again. I reread half a dozen Jill Mansell books. I always enjoy her books, which have several story threads happening at once. Finally I reread Barbara Hannay’s book, The English Jillaroo, which I first read many years ago. She’s been rereleasing her older books, and her writing is so good, it’s always a treat. A “Jillaroo” is a young woman who comes to work on an outback sheep or cattle property to gain practical skills and experience needed to become an owner, manager or overseer of a property. The original term was “Jackaroo” and once young women started to do it, too, they were called Jillaroos.

Mary Jo:  I’ll start with Margaret Porter’s A Change of Location. Margaret Porter and I were both Signet Regency writers at one time, and she’s gone on to write a fascinating variety of mainstream historical novels.  Now she’s written her first contemporary novel, A Change of Location. Though there is mention of it as a rom-com, I’d call it witty women’s fiction.  Here’s the first paragraph of the blurb, which describes the story very well:  Hannah Ballard’s most successful relationship: her career.  Her superpower is an uncanny ability to discover perfect movie settings while avoiding the limelight herself. She’s involved in pre-production for a film based on a bestselling historical novel when a chance meeting with an aristocratic landowner leads her to Somerset and his estate in picturesque Milver Vale—the ideal backdrop for a period drama. Martin Latimer, Marquess of Milverston, believes the release of a high-profile motion picture can increase tourism and bolster the local economy. And he hopes to spend more time with its intriguing location manager.

Before becoming a full time writer, Margaret was an actress and worked in different aspects of film production, so the setting of A Change of Location is as convincing as it is interesting.  I also enjoyed the slow-burn romance with Martin, a marquess of many aspects, and the dogs are charming as well!

In A Sunburned Country by Bill Bryson—I’ve been on something of a Bill Bryson binge.  He is a humorous travel writer, though that hardly begins to capture a sense of his work.  He tends to be very self deprecatory (he portrays himself a klutzy wimp), he brings other places alive, and he can turn on a dime to do a deep dive into history and research.
A Sunburned Country is his tribute to Australia, a country he loves and has visited a number of times. (He notes that the more accurate Australian title would be A Sunburnt Country)
He starts by describing the vastness of Australia, then discusses the vast number of lethal critters that live there. For example, the top ten most poisonous snakes are all Australian, and that some seashells won’t just sting you but actually go for you. The book is based on multiple visits to Australia and his travels to all the major cities as well as the vast outback and Uluru.  Sometimes he travels with friends but more often alone, and his stories are both entertaining and insightful.

To quote a bit of this books blurb as well, “Despite the fact that Australia harbors more things that can kill you in extremely nasty ways than anywhere else, including sharks, crocodiles, snakes, even riptides and deserts, Bill Bryson adores the place, and he takes his readers on a rollicking ride far beyond that beaten tourist path. Wherever he goes he finds Australians who are cheerful, extroverted, and unfailingly obliging, and these beaming products of a land with clean, safe cities, cold beer, and constant sunshine fill the pages of this wonderful book”.

Since I love Australia myself and have visited it three times, I love the book!  Read it if you want to get a sense of The Land Down Under without a very long flight–unless you’re lucky enough to live there yourself!

Andrea: I’ve been madly catching up on various things this past month so didn’t read quite as much as usual. But the one book I did was a real page-turner. A JEWEL IN THE CROWN by David Lewis, the first in a mystery/thriller series entitled The Secret Churchill Filesis a sparkling debut novel from an award-winning Director of Photography for screen and television. I received an ARC—it releases in three weeks—and was immediately hooked by the atmospheric writing, the witty dialogue and great lead characters. Caitrin Colline is a no-nonsense working-class Welsh Socialist who’s been patrolling the streets of East London as a constable during the Blitz, when she’s suddenly picked for special ops training and sent to Winston Churchill for a special mission. He pairs her with Lord Marlton (Hector Neville-Percy) a refined aristocrat from SOE—a mismatch if ever there was one—and assigns them the job of driving the greatest treasure of the Crown Jewels to Scotland, so that they may be taken to Canada via submarine.

They are warned that there may be a plot afoot to stop them by a group of English aristocrats who are Nazi sympathizers . . . and then the intrigue begins, Caitrin and Hector are complex characters and its wonderful watching them learn to work together. Caitrin is the street savvy one who knows how to use a gun and her fists, which makes fun switch in roles. The plotting sharp is sharp, and I was up way too late at night glomming to the finish. Highly recommmended!

Now it’s your turn! As always, please share what recent reads have tickled your fancy!

29 thoughts on “What We Are Reading- June”

  1. Sorry for your troubles, Anne. At this point, getting locked out of Amazon for a few weeks would probably help me with plowing through my backlog of books, and sounds like a not bad idea!
    But I have been chipping away at it a bit. This week I read “A Gentleman Undone” by Cecilia Grant. This is the 2nd book of the Blackshear Family trilogy. I read the first one, “A Lady Awakened” years ago, and it was a great book, but somehow I never continued the series. “A Gentleman Undone” is a bit dark, but she is such as amazing writer. I highly recommend it if you are in the mood for a non-fluffy historical romance that takes place in gambling dens rather than ballrooms.
    Another older book I dug out of the pile was “The Spy’s Reward” by Nita Abrams. I don’t know if anyone else does this, but if I really love an author’s books, but they are no longer writing new ones, I’ll hoard the last unread one. That was the case with this last book of Abrams’s spy series which began with “A Question of Honor”. The hero is a master spy, and appeared in the earlier books, so I knew I would love it, and I did. I recommend starting this series at the beginning, or you’ll not quite understand everything that’s going on.
    I read a very clever crime/police procedural, “End-Game” by Michael Gilbert. This book is from the Golden Age of British mysteries, and it did not disappoint. Only a little over 200 pages, but he packed in some amazing plotting, character development, and suspense.
    I also read the latest Electra McDonnell mystery by Amanda Weaver, “Locked in Pursuit”. This series continues to be very enjoyable, with a bit of romance in the background.

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    • Thanks so much, Karin. What an interesting list! The Spy series sounds very intriguing.

      I’m enjoying the Ashley Weaver Electra McDowell series, too.

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  2. Thank you for the list of books I now want to read. You always bring me wonderful gifts. Your insights and descriptions have helped me find books as well as new authors. Thanks

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    • SO glad you enjoy our monthly recommendations, Annette. I always add WAY too many new books to my TBR pile.

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  3. This could be a very expensive WWR for me, just when I’m trying to cut down, scale back – and catch up on the ridiculously huge number of unread books on my kindle and stacked everywhere! But would still rather be in this situation than yours, Anne – how frustrating! Trying to catch up on books purchased ages ago means I cannot remember where they were recommended, so apologize to Wenches and Commenters if I cannot thank you specifically for the enjoyment!

    Bringing Down the Duke by Evie Dunmore (2019) was the first in her League of Extraordinary Women series, placed during the late Victorian suffragist movement, was both informative and a lovely romance. Each of the four stories focuses on one of 4 young women who meet as early women students at Oxford. I’m halfway thro the second, A Rogue of One’s Own, and enjoying it as much as the first.

    To Marry a Prince by Sophie Page (2011) seemed as if it could have been written last week, as it focuses in large part on living one’s life in the public/social media eye. Predictable in plot, but delightful in getting there, it’s the story of a young anti-monarchist portrait artist chosen to paint “the spare” to the heir in a small, nonexistent, but strikingly familiar country. Loved all the details about painting and art, too!

    Four more of Jennifer Ashley’s Mackenzie series: The Stolen Mackenzie Bride (2015), The Sinful Ways of Jamie Mackenzie (2021), Scandal and the Duchess (2014), and A Rogue Meets a Scandalous Lady (2019). Usually, I like to read series in order, but I’ll read about a gorgeous Mackenzie hero and the strong, intelligent women they love any time – the historical and cultural details always included are just a bonus!

    Finally, on a long unavoidable road trip, listened to Georgette Heyer’s The Black Moth, read by Rupert Degas. It was one of the first Heyer’s I read, and it had been many years, so it was a joy to hear it from such an accomplished reader! Telling on myself: at first, I thought, I really don’t like his voice for Lavinia – she sounds like such a brat! Then I remembered, she IS a brat!

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  4. So sorry ro hear tou were hacked, Anne! What a misery! Hope it gets resolved quickly.
    Heyer is a great fall back, one of my favorite go to reads when nothing else is in the horizon or i need a comfort read! It seems to be a perennial favorite if this blog post is any indication! (I just reread False Colors and enjoyed it for the umpteenth time!)
    So many interesting and intriguing suggestions to add to my TBR pile! I love the fact that you folks always come up with books that are not the usual fare that the whole world is fixated on!
    I am reading Tracy Chevalier’s new book the Glassmaker that takes place on the Island
    of Murano near Venice . It takes a family from the 15th c to the present and so far very interesting and a page turner. I have also just finished the newest book in Jennifer Chiaverini’s Elm Creek Quilt series called Museum of Lost Quilts which takes place in a small town in Pennsylvania. The series centers around a group of people who have become friends through all kinds of situations and because of the quilting school they started up together. I love the characters who are very well drawn and seem very real and like old friends whenever i read the books. I also finsihed a fun romance called Never fall for your Fiance by Virginia Health which is a fun kind of screwball comedy set
    in 1825.
    I loved the Signet regencies. Every month i would go to the bookstore with a friend and we would look at the new selection and buy the new ones together and then exchange them and talk about them. I really do miss them p, they were fun and good stories and well written for the most part. I miss the non psychologicsl, non angst ridden, non characters non dark trip they provided as a relief from the real world. Maybe someday there might be a return to it, but I doubt it……we opened Pandora’s box and i don’t think se can get it closed again.

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    • Jane, that’s a really interesting comment on the Signet Regencies. That line is what inspired me to sit down and try my hand at writing. The writing was really great (no wonder—Mary Jo and Pat wrote for them in the early days!) They did tend to be “simpler” romances, more in the Heyer mold. But times and attitudes change. We live in a more complex world . . . for better and for worse.

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  5. Over the past four weeks ~

    — read several books (for children and young adults) for a bookmark I’m planning. All of these were good, but I most enjoyed the first two. The graphic novel also incorporated some humor. Ice Story: Shackleton’s Lost Expedition by Elizabeth Cody Kimmel; the graphic novel Shackleton: Antarctic Odyssey by Nick Bertozzi; and The Endurance: Shackleton’s Perilous Expedition in Antarctica by Meredith Hooper.
    — For my distant book group, I read The Island of Sea Women by Lisa See. I found the first half of the book to be a tad slow, but I sped through the second half. The book is set on Jeju Island in South Korea from 1938 to 2008; the main character is a haenyeo, a female diver, as is her best friend. I learned quite a bit about Jeju in the post-WWII era; some of the book made for a brutal read.
    — enjoyed the first two books in a young adult science fiction series, Nyxia and Nyxia Unleashed both by Scott Reintgen. In Nyxia, a teenager is offered a great, off-Earth, opportunity which he believes will enable him to save his mother who needs a transplant. Things do not go as promised.
    — quite enjoyed the (mostly Australia set) contemporary romance Sexy as Sin by Rosalind James. This features a very (VERY) wealthy real estate developer and a chef who has just spent most of her money buying part ownership of a catering company. It is quite over the top with a shark attack and poisonings, but it also has someone with a broken bone that is not magically healed. I will happily read more by this author.
    — enjoyed a novella, Like the Taste of Summer by Kaje Harper. This featured two young men falling in love in Iowa in 1981.
    — quite enjoyed the 1960 set You Should Be So Lucky by Cat Sebastian. This is a romance between a baseball player who unwittingly alienates his new team and city and the newspaper book reviewer who is asked to write a running series about him. While I enjoyed the author’s previous book featuring other characters associated with the same newspaper, I found this a much more gripping read.

    — read the contemporary romance, Owls and Other Assassins by Megan Moores. The author wrote this in two months after her son asked if there was anything she regretted not yet having done; her answer was to have written a book. I thought the male lead was not terribly likeable and the storyline was a little over the top, but overall this was a fun read.
    — read Nyxia Uprising by Scott Reintgen which finished the young adult science fiction trilogy. This was an enjoyable series but not one I’ll quickly reread.
    — read and quite enjoyed The Musician and the Monster by Jenya Keefe. This is a contemporary male/male fantasy romance featuring a fae who has come to earth to learn about humankind and their music (a one way trip since while he can send information back, he cannot return to the Otherworld) and a musician who (to save a parent from a jail term) has reluctantly agreed to be his companion for a number of years. I can foresee rereading this and am now interested in seeing what else the author has written.
    — read a contemporary romance novella, Avocado Protection by Kaje Harper. This features a scientist and the head of a security company that is hired to protect him after a kidnapping attempt. The scientist has developed a device that enables the user to determine the ripeness of avocados.
    — read On Censorship: A Public Librarian Examines Cancel Culture in the US by James LaRue which was a quick but worthwhile read. I have to admit that I chose this book because of its cover. (If you’ve seen my bookmarks, you’ll understand why!)
    — quite enjoyed The Sunny Side by Lily Morton which is a contemporary male/male romance between a top fashion model and his agency’s owner. The model has poor self-esteem due to parental abuse/dyslexia but is a generally upbeat person while the owner has a more controlled personality.
    — enjoyed rereading the contemporary romance, Lucky by Gigi DeGraham. It featured three teens in their last year of high school who have a polyamorous romance.

    — For my local book group, I read Any Other Family by Eleanor Brown which was my suggestion. (I won it in a Goodreads giveaway, so it was on hand.) It’s about three families who are taking a family vacation together; they are bound together by having adopted four biological siblings and are committed to having the children stay connected. The biological mother is invited but cannot attend. During the vacation, the biological mother informs them that she is pregnant again and hopes that the young couple who adopted her newborn a year ago will adopt this newest child. The five adoptive parents (a single woman, a wealthy older couple, and a younger couple) are all very different people; the children range from one through a pre-teen. It took me a while to get caught up in this story, but I ultimately enjoyed it and the subsequent discussion.
    — enjoyed Happy Medium by Sarah Adler which is a contemporary romance between a conwoman medium and the man trying to sell the goat farm that one of her clients has hired her to exorcise. They anger each other at their first meeting, and then the conwoman, much to her surprise, encounters a ghost and learns his story.
    — read Deefur Dog by RJ Scott, a contemporary romance novella that was a pleasant read about a grieving widow and the male nanny he hires to care for his young daughter and his Great Dane.
    — enjoyed yet another reread of Linesman and Alliance by S.K. Dunstall.

    — quite enjoyed the contemporary romance The Unlikely Heir by Jax Calder. This featured a young man, 11th in line to the British throne but raised in the US who suddenly becomes heir to the throne when those ahead of him are tried for criminal acts. He and the British prime minister secretly become friends and slowly develop feelings for each other. I appreciate romances where the characters get to know each other well before becoming intimate.
    — finished my reread of the Linesman trilogy with Confluence by S. K. Dunstall and enjoyed it yet again.

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    • Am fanning myself out of sheer exhaustion, as usual, after reading your amazing list, Kareni. SO many interesting books mentioned. I have one of the Shackleton books already on my list as I’ve always been fascinated by extreme explorations.

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  6. Oh, Anne, how frustrating that your credit card was hacked. I hope that all will soon be resolved.

    I’ve already added half a dozen books to my list. Thank you, Word Wenches and fellow visitors!

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    • Thanks, Kareni, It’s been going on for weeks — so frustrating! And in the meantime all the books I preordered don’t get paid for! But yesterday I finally got a man who checked my story and has “escalated” my issue and told me it should be fixed some time in the next 24 hours. Everything crossed it happens.

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  7. The Ellsworth Assortment by Christina Dudley has been my reading this month. She does an excellent job of portraying the life of a cathedral town, in this case Winchester, with the romance outcomes for the various offspring of a local landowner.

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  8. This month:
    – Charity Girl, Georgette Heyer (audiobook)
    – A Duke Of One’s Own (Emma Orchard); Regency
    – A Scandalous Match (Jane Dunn); Regency
    – Uproar! (Alice Loxton); non-fiction, about Georgian satirical artists
    – Say Yes To The Marquess (Tessa Dare); audiobook
    – Shadows Of London (Andrew Taylor); part of the ‘ashes of London’ series, whch I love
    – The Youngest Miss Ward (Joan Aiken); cover says Mansfield Park sequel but more a prequel

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  9. I started the month with The Secret History of Audrey James by Heather Marshall. I had decided to take a break from WWII historical fiction as I felt overloaded but was offered this ARC and was so glad I read it. A brilliant read and comes at a different angle of the war than I’d previously read.
    Then came A Pocketful of Rye by Agatha Christie for my GR group read.
    I finished Robin Hood by Henry Gilbert, which I had been dipping in and out of and I did enjoy it. I’ve always loved Robin Hood since I first saw Errol Flynn play the part many years ago.
    The Masqueraders by Georgette Heyer, again for a GR group and Fair Ellen, a novella by Jayne Davis, which was an enjoyable read and would have been good as a full length story.
    The Hands of Time by Irina Shapiro followed and The Hollywood Governess by Alexandra Weston was another ARC.
    My last book this month so far was Bring On The Empty Horses by David Niven. It’s a memoir of his days in Hollywood and was thoroughly enjoyable. He has a great way of telling a story and I was fascinated by it. A great read.
    That’s it so far for me. Sorry to hear about your problems Anne. When my card was hacked some years ago, I had to get a new one, delete the old one from Amazon and add the new. Don’t know if that’s any help. But rereading Heyer’s is a great comfort at least 🙂

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    • What a wonderful selection of books, Teresa. I am going to look up The Secret History of Audrey James, which sounds very intriguing.

      I read the Niven memoir a while back and loved it. He’s a delightful storyteller, and I highly recommend it to others as well, especially if you love the world of movies and Hollywood.

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    • Thanks, Teresa — the trouble is I was hacked twice — the second time on the new card, how they did that, I don’t know. So now I have a third new card but can’t get in to amazon to change it over.

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      • Anne, i woukd immediately notify your credit card company and your credit bureau. Apparently they have your info to apply for a card in your name or they have access to the credit card comlany, bank or credit buraeu. The hacker may have information on you that enables the, to obtain that info. If you have a driver,s license contact the mototr vehicle dept and see if you can get a new license or what they would suggest. Also chek with your bank.
        It soounds as if they have information on you they obtained from hacking you.
        Hooe this gets resolved soon!

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  10. I too admire David Niven’s writing.

    If you like Hollywood bios and tall tales, I would recommend:

    Wide Eyed in Babylon by Ray Milland
    You Must Remember This and I Loved Her in the Movies by Robert Wagner
    The Kid Stays in the Picture by Robert Evans (you ladies who write rakes should really read this one 😉
    Anything by William Shatner – always interesting, never bores me

    As for July reads, I have nothing. I’ve mostly been rereading older books (False Colours at the moment) and continuing to plow through Harry Turtledove’s Videssos series, with its enormous cast of characters with colorful names; I am told though that this is a series in which the female love interests are disposable (we will see).

    I did read the latest Jane Ashford, The Duke Has Done It Again, which was a pleasant, low-key read; I am wondering if it’s the last in this series. I also read a Dean Koontz and a David Baldacci, and though both of them are good at what they do, I didn’t find either book particularly interesting.

    Now halfway through Mrs. Sommersby’s Second Chance by Laurie Benson, which features a heroine in her 40s, which is still younger than I am, so I will be curious to see if she’s written differently than the younger girls in this series (The Sommersby Brides).

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  11. Apparently I was so bad at note taking that …I have none! I know I read books because they came through on interlibrary loan and I had to read them fast. I also know I read Locked in Pursuit by Ashley Weaver because it came through the “regular” library for me. Enjoyed it as usual. It will be interesting to see what t is done in the next book since it won’t be set in England

    Ah HA! I just found my library checkout receipts and see that I read People in Glass Houses by Jayne Castle – the latest Dust Bunnie book. It was good as always and I’m already waiting for the next one. Grin.

    Also read/studied two really interesting map books.
    Wild Maps for Curious Minds: 100 new ways to see the natural world and Brilliant Maps for Curious minds. Both by Ian Wright. The maps are on all kinds of fascinating topics. Some maps you look at and just go, huh and move on. Others you keep looking at going, oh..now I see/understand. Every topic under the sun. He is a blogger and map creator. These books are the maps that were published online.

    Sitting on my reading table is Terror in Topaz by A.M. Stuart that I just got on Friday. Looking forward to reading it and then eventually the continuation of the series. I’ve heard that there are going to be at least 2 or 3 more books in the series.

    Anne, horrors that Amazon has you locked up. Maybe you need to have a credit freeze done so they can’t apply/do anything else to you. (the hackers). Good luck and I hope your miserable situation is resolved soon.

    Reply

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