What We’re Watching & Reading in February

Susan here, presenting our February choices for WWR—What We’re Reading—and more. Over these last wintry weeks all around the globe (in cold, balmy, rainy or hot weather!), some of us have been watching more than reading lately, from movies to TV detectives to puppies. Scroll down for our favorite picks, and let us know what you’ve been reading and/or watching lately too. And happy Leap Year today, February 29 — especially to any Leap Year birthdays out there!

Anne Gracie:

Anne here, doing a bit of a catch-up of my reading. We ended up talking about "comfort reads" for our WWR in November, and so I never mentioned my new read of Carla Kelly's Doing No Harm, which I really enjoyed. As well this month, I've continued my glom of Robin Hobb books and have now read my way through most of her backlist. Can't wait for Assassin's Fate, which will be out in 2017. 17167084
I've also finished the five Sharon Shinn "angel" series book that started with Archangel — well worth reading.

I've also been catching up on Louise Penny and have read How The Light Gets In and The Long Way Home, both of which I thoroughly enjoyed. It might look as though I've read no romance this month, but actually I've been reading books for the Romance Writers of America RITA competition. But I can't talk about them, so that's all folks from me for now.

​Joanna Bourne: ​

Wenches cat sitter (1)I’ve recently enjoyed a warm-hearted cozy mystery, Even Cat Sitters Get the Blues by Blaize Clement. On Siesta Key everybody’s favorite pet sitter, (and former sheriff’s deputy,) Dixie Hemingway, gets involved in a bizarre murder.

I’ll admit I was less interested in who killed whom than in the beleaguered iguana who witnessed it all. Dixie’s passionate defense of all that yowls and scratches and sheds feathers warmed my heart. Way to go, Dixie.

My other book this month is Deanna Raybourn’s A Curious Beginning. In Victorian England, Veronica Speedwell, an intrepid and liberated lepidopterist, meets Stoker, enigmatic, bad-tempered naturalist. Murder, attempted kidnapping, taxidermy, and life in a travelling circus enliven the pair’s flight through the English countryside.

Who is the criminal mastermind chasing them and what does he want? When do Veronica and Stoker make love?

​Is elephant taxidermy even possible under these circumstances? 

​This is Book One in the series. We’ll find out …

Nicola Cornick:

EthelThis month I seem to have spent a disproportionate time watching Ethel, the new Guide Dog puppy. Ethel is 12 weeks old now and very quick to learn. She has already started her guide dog training. At home, though, she is just like any other puppy and loves play and cuddles. It’s extraordinary how much time I can spend simply watching her enjoying discovering things like her reflection, or wrestling with her toys.

In between Ethel, writing and other stuff I have also managed to watch The Night Manager, the new adaptation of the book by John Le Carré that is on the BBC at the moment. It’s superb, but then I could watch Tom Hiddleston in almost anything. I have to confess that I have never read Le Carré but I have enjoyed the TV and film adaptations I’ve seen. Although I enjoy thrillers I don't tend to read spy stories yet I always enjoy watching them. In The Night Manager the plotting is tight and suspenseful, the characterisation is clear and compelling and I have fun trying to stay ahead of the twists!

Pat Rice:

I’m in another reading slump, with nothing but Jo’s fabulous The Viscount Takes A Wife to keep me going. But I have actually been watching some television. We don’t get any of the fancy channels—we have to hunt HBO shows on Netflix—so most of my TV watching is on the main networks. I’ve loved Elementary since its inception but there are two new shows that we’re following—Lucifer, and You, Me, and the Apocalypse.

You_Me_End_1920x1080Lucifer, on Fox, is based on a line from Neil Gaiman about the devil taking a vacation—a fascinating concept in itself. The show opens with Lucifer Morningstar running an exclusive bar and dance club. He has his hellish protector tending bar and an angel trying to persuade him back where he belongs because all hell is well…going to hell. Then someone gets murdered, and he wants justice—or to throw the guy in hell, that’s not real clear. And that’s the main problem with the show—the storyline doesn’t seem to be absolutely certain if the devil is evil or not. He flashes evil when he catches his victims but most of the time, he smirks and is charming enough to want to slap him. Watch a few episodes and let me know what you think.

The other show, NBC's You, Me, and the Apocalypse, is just simply brilliant—the writing, the acting, the concept… I’m totally loving it. The concept is that a meteor is about to strike the earth in 30 days and everyone is going to die. But our main hero has just discovered he has a twin brother who has made off with his wife five years ago, and he’s more interested in finding her than any comet. Then we have the innocent nun and the sardonic priest (Rob Lowe) who are searching for the savior, hoping for the second coming. If that’s not enough, we have the loving mother who has gone to jail for her hacker son, and broken out along with a crazed killer during a riot. She’s trying to reach her son, who might have the key to the whole crisis—while his uncle is busy stockpiling a bunker for the chosen few. Aw c’mon, you want to see it, don’t you? It’s high class lunacy!

Jo Beverley:

I’ll endorse You, Me, and the Apocalypse. Zany, and mostly very British. I can add that I'm enjoying a new series of Vera, a police show set in Northumberland, with a frumpy, middle-aged woman as the police chief, and she's a great, strong character. It's always nice to see something set in the far North.

A while back I mostly enjoyed The Last Kingdom, based on Bernard Cornwell's books about the early years of King Alfred's reign. It's quite violent, and Uhtred, the protagonist, is often very macho-man stupid, which I think is the point. Cornwell does no-nonsense warrior heroes very well. They don't angst over war; they get on with it and mostly enjoy it.

Andrea Pickens/Cara Elliott:

CastleI’m not much of a television watcher, but recently a friend was needling me about missing great dialogue and plotting by not being a couch potato—and then went on to recommend a show that’s in its eighth season as something I might like, as it involves a handsome and charming bestselling crime author shadowing a very attractive female police homicide detective for “research.” I promptly went to the library to check out the first season, and now have been binge watching ABC's Castle, which I find quite fun. The dialogue is sharp and witty, and the cast of characters quite interesting. The initial banter has slowly deepened to more nuanced relationship, and the way the backstories unfold is very well done. I’m hooked.

And then there is The West Wing. Yup, never watched that either, though I had always heard good things about it (she says, ducking rotten tomatoes being lobbed at her head). So have been dabbling in that too, and greatly enjoying the ensemble acting, and the  weaving of relationships. It’s fascinating to watch how screenwriters develop ideas—and I really have learned a lot about craft, as well as simply an entertaining story!

Mary Jo Putney:

Hey, no fair that Cara/Andrea got to Castle first!  I don't watch actual television, but if there's a series I like, I buy the DVDs and we watch them in blessed commercial-free comfort on the weekends.  We tend to watch science fiction series and mysteries with humor, but we've been on a real Castle kick lately–not the most recent episodes, but starting over from the beginning of the series just because we were running out of current episodes.  

I love the fact that the eponymous Richard Castle is a bestselling mystery writer, with all the mixed arrogance and insecurity of his breed.  His outside of the box thinking and ability to assemble clues into a narrative help him solve murders. I love his very smart teenage daughter and his flamboyant actress mother, who humanize him.  

And I love Detective Kate Beckett, who is as intelligent as she is gorgeous and who is a perfect contrast to Castle, and an eventual love interest.  There is sometimes darkness, but also a lot of wit and warmth, and very twisty plotting with masses of red herrings.  Plus, there are often elements of a happy ending, which isn't true of all mystery series.  There's a lovely cast of secondary characters, including Kate's team members, detectives Esposito and Ryan.  All are well developed and they grow over time.  Fun, even the second time around! 

Susan King:

ExpanseWith not much reading time lately, I’ve had lots of busy family time and also some copyediting to do—which I sometimes do in front of the TV if it’s small stuff so I can  hang out with The Guys in the house—so I’ve done more watching than reading in February. Like Pat, I’ve enjoyed Lucifer for its charm and wry humor, sometimes with an intriguing dark twist. Another we discovered on Hulu was Daredevil—about the comic book hero who is a blind and dedicated lawyer for the underdog by day and a tough, clever vigilante by night. I loved it, loved the character development and story twists and especially love the fascinating hero of this series. We’ll tune in for the next season!

We also watched the first season of The Expanse on Syfy—an intelligent, complex, gritty and fascinating series set in the far future when Earth, Mars and all in between has been settled as active and competitive territories. Based on the book series by James S.A. Corey, an author duo, the smart writing, layered characters and high production values make this a worthy new sci fi series with real staying power, and it’s just been greenlighted for another ten episodes. The TV fans in my house are very pleased.

What have you been reading and/or watching lately? We're always happy to add more titles to our to-be-read stacks and to-be-watched lists, too! 

Susan 

 

65 thoughts on “What We’re Watching & Reading in February”

  1. I’ve just finished reading Fallen by Lia Mills and it was a very good read. It’s about an ordinary girl who lived through the week of the Easter Rising in Ireland in 1916. We see what happened through her eyes rather than the actual rebels.
    On tv I’ve been watching ‘Mr Selfridge’ and ‘Call The Midwives’. I love these two series. Think they’re winding down Mr Selfridge and I’ll be sorry when it’s finished. After I watched the first series, I bought and read the biography of Harry Selfridge. It was an excellent read and they’re following his life pretty well with the series.

    Reply
  2. I’ve just finished reading Fallen by Lia Mills and it was a very good read. It’s about an ordinary girl who lived through the week of the Easter Rising in Ireland in 1916. We see what happened through her eyes rather than the actual rebels.
    On tv I’ve been watching ‘Mr Selfridge’ and ‘Call The Midwives’. I love these two series. Think they’re winding down Mr Selfridge and I’ll be sorry when it’s finished. After I watched the first series, I bought and read the biography of Harry Selfridge. It was an excellent read and they’re following his life pretty well with the series.

    Reply
  3. I’ve just finished reading Fallen by Lia Mills and it was a very good read. It’s about an ordinary girl who lived through the week of the Easter Rising in Ireland in 1916. We see what happened through her eyes rather than the actual rebels.
    On tv I’ve been watching ‘Mr Selfridge’ and ‘Call The Midwives’. I love these two series. Think they’re winding down Mr Selfridge and I’ll be sorry when it’s finished. After I watched the first series, I bought and read the biography of Harry Selfridge. It was an excellent read and they’re following his life pretty well with the series.

    Reply
  4. I’ve just finished reading Fallen by Lia Mills and it was a very good read. It’s about an ordinary girl who lived through the week of the Easter Rising in Ireland in 1916. We see what happened through her eyes rather than the actual rebels.
    On tv I’ve been watching ‘Mr Selfridge’ and ‘Call The Midwives’. I love these two series. Think they’re winding down Mr Selfridge and I’ll be sorry when it’s finished. After I watched the first series, I bought and read the biography of Harry Selfridge. It was an excellent read and they’re following his life pretty well with the series.

    Reply
  5. I’ve just finished reading Fallen by Lia Mills and it was a very good read. It’s about an ordinary girl who lived through the week of the Easter Rising in Ireland in 1916. We see what happened through her eyes rather than the actual rebels.
    On tv I’ve been watching ‘Mr Selfridge’ and ‘Call The Midwives’. I love these two series. Think they’re winding down Mr Selfridge and I’ll be sorry when it’s finished. After I watched the first series, I bought and read the biography of Harry Selfridge. It was an excellent read and they’re following his life pretty well with the series.

    Reply
  6. Nicola — I remember reading a diary of a guide dog puppy who was growing up with you, and loved it, so I’m pleased to hear about Ethel. I hope she does well!

    Reply
  7. Nicola — I remember reading a diary of a guide dog puppy who was growing up with you, and loved it, so I’m pleased to hear about Ethel. I hope she does well!

    Reply
  8. Nicola — I remember reading a diary of a guide dog puppy who was growing up with you, and loved it, so I’m pleased to hear about Ethel. I hope she does well!

    Reply
  9. Nicola — I remember reading a diary of a guide dog puppy who was growing up with you, and loved it, so I’m pleased to hear about Ethel. I hope she does well!

    Reply
  10. Nicola — I remember reading a diary of a guide dog puppy who was growing up with you, and loved it, so I’m pleased to hear about Ethel. I hope she does well!

    Reply
  11. I have a *huge* amazon dvd habit, mostly UK drama series. However since my new TV has a button for Netflix and Amazon, I’ve been watching streaming series. I am crazy about Jessica Jones and Daredevil; I love noir anyway, and these are superb. Sense8 was amazing too — filmed all over the world. They all have great actors in them. River was interesting too if you’re in the mood for BritNoir, which they seem to interpret mostly as ongoing hopeless gloom 🙂
    The streaming services have picked up many Brit series, many of which were already in my library. It’s not quite as good a viewing experience as dvd; you don’t get extras, though you do get subtitles if there are any. The picture quality can vary depending on your services’s capabilities. Also, series can go off a streaming service when their license to run it expires, so I will be looking to buy dvd sets of Jessica Jones and Daredevil if/when issued, so as to have them in my library.
    None of these are guilty pleasures; I refuse to recognize such a concept anymore 🙂

    Reply
  12. I have a *huge* amazon dvd habit, mostly UK drama series. However since my new TV has a button for Netflix and Amazon, I’ve been watching streaming series. I am crazy about Jessica Jones and Daredevil; I love noir anyway, and these are superb. Sense8 was amazing too — filmed all over the world. They all have great actors in them. River was interesting too if you’re in the mood for BritNoir, which they seem to interpret mostly as ongoing hopeless gloom 🙂
    The streaming services have picked up many Brit series, many of which were already in my library. It’s not quite as good a viewing experience as dvd; you don’t get extras, though you do get subtitles if there are any. The picture quality can vary depending on your services’s capabilities. Also, series can go off a streaming service when their license to run it expires, so I will be looking to buy dvd sets of Jessica Jones and Daredevil if/when issued, so as to have them in my library.
    None of these are guilty pleasures; I refuse to recognize such a concept anymore 🙂

    Reply
  13. I have a *huge* amazon dvd habit, mostly UK drama series. However since my new TV has a button for Netflix and Amazon, I’ve been watching streaming series. I am crazy about Jessica Jones and Daredevil; I love noir anyway, and these are superb. Sense8 was amazing too — filmed all over the world. They all have great actors in them. River was interesting too if you’re in the mood for BritNoir, which they seem to interpret mostly as ongoing hopeless gloom 🙂
    The streaming services have picked up many Brit series, many of which were already in my library. It’s not quite as good a viewing experience as dvd; you don’t get extras, though you do get subtitles if there are any. The picture quality can vary depending on your services’s capabilities. Also, series can go off a streaming service when their license to run it expires, so I will be looking to buy dvd sets of Jessica Jones and Daredevil if/when issued, so as to have them in my library.
    None of these are guilty pleasures; I refuse to recognize such a concept anymore 🙂

    Reply
  14. I have a *huge* amazon dvd habit, mostly UK drama series. However since my new TV has a button for Netflix and Amazon, I’ve been watching streaming series. I am crazy about Jessica Jones and Daredevil; I love noir anyway, and these are superb. Sense8 was amazing too — filmed all over the world. They all have great actors in them. River was interesting too if you’re in the mood for BritNoir, which they seem to interpret mostly as ongoing hopeless gloom 🙂
    The streaming services have picked up many Brit series, many of which were already in my library. It’s not quite as good a viewing experience as dvd; you don’t get extras, though you do get subtitles if there are any. The picture quality can vary depending on your services’s capabilities. Also, series can go off a streaming service when their license to run it expires, so I will be looking to buy dvd sets of Jessica Jones and Daredevil if/when issued, so as to have them in my library.
    None of these are guilty pleasures; I refuse to recognize such a concept anymore 🙂

    Reply
  15. I have a *huge* amazon dvd habit, mostly UK drama series. However since my new TV has a button for Netflix and Amazon, I’ve been watching streaming series. I am crazy about Jessica Jones and Daredevil; I love noir anyway, and these are superb. Sense8 was amazing too — filmed all over the world. They all have great actors in them. River was interesting too if you’re in the mood for BritNoir, which they seem to interpret mostly as ongoing hopeless gloom 🙂
    The streaming services have picked up many Brit series, many of which were already in my library. It’s not quite as good a viewing experience as dvd; you don’t get extras, though you do get subtitles if there are any. The picture quality can vary depending on your services’s capabilities. Also, series can go off a streaming service when their license to run it expires, so I will be looking to buy dvd sets of Jessica Jones and Daredevil if/when issued, so as to have them in my library.
    None of these are guilty pleasures; I refuse to recognize such a concept anymore 🙂

    Reply
  16. My sons got me hooked on Castle. Their interest was in Nathan Fillion from Firefly fame. Then we started binge watching on Netflix (also in blessed commercial free bliss). Totally hooked!
    Another one we really enjoy is Numb3rs. I love the interaction with the family members – brothers of which between full and steps and in-laws, I have 9-10 if you count ex-BIL! So I’m familiar with the brotherly banter/torment/I can so play you! dynamics.
    We like a lot of Sci-Fi and crime-drama types of TV and documentaries. Ones where you learn and that make you think.

    Reply
  17. My sons got me hooked on Castle. Their interest was in Nathan Fillion from Firefly fame. Then we started binge watching on Netflix (also in blessed commercial free bliss). Totally hooked!
    Another one we really enjoy is Numb3rs. I love the interaction with the family members – brothers of which between full and steps and in-laws, I have 9-10 if you count ex-BIL! So I’m familiar with the brotherly banter/torment/I can so play you! dynamics.
    We like a lot of Sci-Fi and crime-drama types of TV and documentaries. Ones where you learn and that make you think.

    Reply
  18. My sons got me hooked on Castle. Their interest was in Nathan Fillion from Firefly fame. Then we started binge watching on Netflix (also in blessed commercial free bliss). Totally hooked!
    Another one we really enjoy is Numb3rs. I love the interaction with the family members – brothers of which between full and steps and in-laws, I have 9-10 if you count ex-BIL! So I’m familiar with the brotherly banter/torment/I can so play you! dynamics.
    We like a lot of Sci-Fi and crime-drama types of TV and documentaries. Ones where you learn and that make you think.

    Reply
  19. My sons got me hooked on Castle. Their interest was in Nathan Fillion from Firefly fame. Then we started binge watching on Netflix (also in blessed commercial free bliss). Totally hooked!
    Another one we really enjoy is Numb3rs. I love the interaction with the family members – brothers of which between full and steps and in-laws, I have 9-10 if you count ex-BIL! So I’m familiar with the brotherly banter/torment/I can so play you! dynamics.
    We like a lot of Sci-Fi and crime-drama types of TV and documentaries. Ones where you learn and that make you think.

    Reply
  20. My sons got me hooked on Castle. Their interest was in Nathan Fillion from Firefly fame. Then we started binge watching on Netflix (also in blessed commercial free bliss). Totally hooked!
    Another one we really enjoy is Numb3rs. I love the interaction with the family members – brothers of which between full and steps and in-laws, I have 9-10 if you count ex-BIL! So I’m familiar with the brotherly banter/torment/I can so play you! dynamics.
    We like a lot of Sci-Fi and crime-drama types of TV and documentaries. Ones where you learn and that make you think.

    Reply
  21. Right now I’m reading Terry Jones’ Medieval lives (it’s also a documentary series). As for TV series, I’ve been watching Murdoch Mysteries and thanks to DVDs, I’ve been watching again Numb3rs and Due South. What can I say? I love geeks and Canadians!
    Speaking of Castle, in the series there are quite a few references to Firefly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFj8eFZx-TA

    Reply
  22. Right now I’m reading Terry Jones’ Medieval lives (it’s also a documentary series). As for TV series, I’ve been watching Murdoch Mysteries and thanks to DVDs, I’ve been watching again Numb3rs and Due South. What can I say? I love geeks and Canadians!
    Speaking of Castle, in the series there are quite a few references to Firefly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFj8eFZx-TA

    Reply
  23. Right now I’m reading Terry Jones’ Medieval lives (it’s also a documentary series). As for TV series, I’ve been watching Murdoch Mysteries and thanks to DVDs, I’ve been watching again Numb3rs and Due South. What can I say? I love geeks and Canadians!
    Speaking of Castle, in the series there are quite a few references to Firefly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFj8eFZx-TA

    Reply
  24. Right now I’m reading Terry Jones’ Medieval lives (it’s also a documentary series). As for TV series, I’ve been watching Murdoch Mysteries and thanks to DVDs, I’ve been watching again Numb3rs and Due South. What can I say? I love geeks and Canadians!
    Speaking of Castle, in the series there are quite a few references to Firefly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFj8eFZx-TA

    Reply
  25. Right now I’m reading Terry Jones’ Medieval lives (it’s also a documentary series). As for TV series, I’ve been watching Murdoch Mysteries and thanks to DVDs, I’ve been watching again Numb3rs and Due South. What can I say? I love geeks and Canadians!
    Speaking of Castle, in the series there are quite a few references to Firefly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aFj8eFZx-TA

    Reply
  26. I am eagerly awaiting new books by the Wenches (re-reading earlier books while waiting) as well as books by Julia Quinn and Mary Balogh that will be arriving soon. Waiting for American editions of others.
    It really feels like there are fewer historical romances being published now than there were a few years ago and most of those that are published aren’t on the shelves of my local store have to be ordered.
    My local PBS station often lets me down by not buying the various British mysteries. They’ve never aired Vera or Miss Fisher. We got the first 3-episode “season” of Case Histories, but not the second. The first two seasons of Scott and Bailey are occasionally re-run in the wee hours, but all in all it’s disappointing. So I end up buying the DVD sets.
    For me, the Vera series is a love-hate situation. I enjoy the episodes that aren’t based on one of the Vera Stanhope novels much more than the ones that are. I’m awaiting the delivery of another box set now and I’m glad that the author is enjoying the sort of financial success that comes with having two of her series on television. The problem is that Ann Cleeves is one of my favorite mystery authors and when the sort of story she tells is transformed into an 89 minute television program, a LOT is lost. It’s still good television – great setting, interesting plots and well-acted central characters. Just don’t read the books first – especially The Crow Trap which is 535 pages in the trade paper edition, and like all the others 89 minutes on the DVD.
    I’m hoping that either PBS or BBC America will show The Night Manager here. I’ve been reading John LeCarre since the mid-60s when I read his earlier novellas while waiting for a copy of The Spy Who Came in From the Cold to be available at the library. The old 70s and 80s productions with Alec Guinness as George Smiley are favorite of mine.

    Reply
  27. I am eagerly awaiting new books by the Wenches (re-reading earlier books while waiting) as well as books by Julia Quinn and Mary Balogh that will be arriving soon. Waiting for American editions of others.
    It really feels like there are fewer historical romances being published now than there were a few years ago and most of those that are published aren’t on the shelves of my local store have to be ordered.
    My local PBS station often lets me down by not buying the various British mysteries. They’ve never aired Vera or Miss Fisher. We got the first 3-episode “season” of Case Histories, but not the second. The first two seasons of Scott and Bailey are occasionally re-run in the wee hours, but all in all it’s disappointing. So I end up buying the DVD sets.
    For me, the Vera series is a love-hate situation. I enjoy the episodes that aren’t based on one of the Vera Stanhope novels much more than the ones that are. I’m awaiting the delivery of another box set now and I’m glad that the author is enjoying the sort of financial success that comes with having two of her series on television. The problem is that Ann Cleeves is one of my favorite mystery authors and when the sort of story she tells is transformed into an 89 minute television program, a LOT is lost. It’s still good television – great setting, interesting plots and well-acted central characters. Just don’t read the books first – especially The Crow Trap which is 535 pages in the trade paper edition, and like all the others 89 minutes on the DVD.
    I’m hoping that either PBS or BBC America will show The Night Manager here. I’ve been reading John LeCarre since the mid-60s when I read his earlier novellas while waiting for a copy of The Spy Who Came in From the Cold to be available at the library. The old 70s and 80s productions with Alec Guinness as George Smiley are favorite of mine.

    Reply
  28. I am eagerly awaiting new books by the Wenches (re-reading earlier books while waiting) as well as books by Julia Quinn and Mary Balogh that will be arriving soon. Waiting for American editions of others.
    It really feels like there are fewer historical romances being published now than there were a few years ago and most of those that are published aren’t on the shelves of my local store have to be ordered.
    My local PBS station often lets me down by not buying the various British mysteries. They’ve never aired Vera or Miss Fisher. We got the first 3-episode “season” of Case Histories, but not the second. The first two seasons of Scott and Bailey are occasionally re-run in the wee hours, but all in all it’s disappointing. So I end up buying the DVD sets.
    For me, the Vera series is a love-hate situation. I enjoy the episodes that aren’t based on one of the Vera Stanhope novels much more than the ones that are. I’m awaiting the delivery of another box set now and I’m glad that the author is enjoying the sort of financial success that comes with having two of her series on television. The problem is that Ann Cleeves is one of my favorite mystery authors and when the sort of story she tells is transformed into an 89 minute television program, a LOT is lost. It’s still good television – great setting, interesting plots and well-acted central characters. Just don’t read the books first – especially The Crow Trap which is 535 pages in the trade paper edition, and like all the others 89 minutes on the DVD.
    I’m hoping that either PBS or BBC America will show The Night Manager here. I’ve been reading John LeCarre since the mid-60s when I read his earlier novellas while waiting for a copy of The Spy Who Came in From the Cold to be available at the library. The old 70s and 80s productions with Alec Guinness as George Smiley are favorite of mine.

    Reply
  29. I am eagerly awaiting new books by the Wenches (re-reading earlier books while waiting) as well as books by Julia Quinn and Mary Balogh that will be arriving soon. Waiting for American editions of others.
    It really feels like there are fewer historical romances being published now than there were a few years ago and most of those that are published aren’t on the shelves of my local store have to be ordered.
    My local PBS station often lets me down by not buying the various British mysteries. They’ve never aired Vera or Miss Fisher. We got the first 3-episode “season” of Case Histories, but not the second. The first two seasons of Scott and Bailey are occasionally re-run in the wee hours, but all in all it’s disappointing. So I end up buying the DVD sets.
    For me, the Vera series is a love-hate situation. I enjoy the episodes that aren’t based on one of the Vera Stanhope novels much more than the ones that are. I’m awaiting the delivery of another box set now and I’m glad that the author is enjoying the sort of financial success that comes with having two of her series on television. The problem is that Ann Cleeves is one of my favorite mystery authors and when the sort of story she tells is transformed into an 89 minute television program, a LOT is lost. It’s still good television – great setting, interesting plots and well-acted central characters. Just don’t read the books first – especially The Crow Trap which is 535 pages in the trade paper edition, and like all the others 89 minutes on the DVD.
    I’m hoping that either PBS or BBC America will show The Night Manager here. I’ve been reading John LeCarre since the mid-60s when I read his earlier novellas while waiting for a copy of The Spy Who Came in From the Cold to be available at the library. The old 70s and 80s productions with Alec Guinness as George Smiley are favorite of mine.

    Reply
  30. I am eagerly awaiting new books by the Wenches (re-reading earlier books while waiting) as well as books by Julia Quinn and Mary Balogh that will be arriving soon. Waiting for American editions of others.
    It really feels like there are fewer historical romances being published now than there were a few years ago and most of those that are published aren’t on the shelves of my local store have to be ordered.
    My local PBS station often lets me down by not buying the various British mysteries. They’ve never aired Vera or Miss Fisher. We got the first 3-episode “season” of Case Histories, but not the second. The first two seasons of Scott and Bailey are occasionally re-run in the wee hours, but all in all it’s disappointing. So I end up buying the DVD sets.
    For me, the Vera series is a love-hate situation. I enjoy the episodes that aren’t based on one of the Vera Stanhope novels much more than the ones that are. I’m awaiting the delivery of another box set now and I’m glad that the author is enjoying the sort of financial success that comes with having two of her series on television. The problem is that Ann Cleeves is one of my favorite mystery authors and when the sort of story she tells is transformed into an 89 minute television program, a LOT is lost. It’s still good television – great setting, interesting plots and well-acted central characters. Just don’t read the books first – especially The Crow Trap which is 535 pages in the trade paper edition, and like all the others 89 minutes on the DVD.
    I’m hoping that either PBS or BBC America will show The Night Manager here. I’ve been reading John LeCarre since the mid-60s when I read his earlier novellas while waiting for a copy of The Spy Who Came in From the Cold to be available at the library. The old 70s and 80s productions with Alec Guinness as George Smiley are favorite of mine.

    Reply
  31. As for my reading: I discovered that I could get “The Tar-Aym Krang” for my nook and that sent me off on a reread of ALL the Flinx and Pip novels. With Sliding Scales coming up, I am reaching the new-to-me stories in this series.
    I’m taking a short break before I embark on the final Flinx and Pip stories, something caused me to thin of Patricia Rice’s “The Formidable Lord Quentin” so I am re-reading that book before I complete Flinx and Pip.
    I am looking into the Robin Hobb and Sharon Shinn books that Ann Gracie has mentioned. I’ll be getting these from my library at this time.
    And for Television watching — I’m currently watching Season 2 of the Miss Fisher mysteries (recommended to me here by Mary Jo) and I’m thoroughly enjoying these.

    Reply
  32. As for my reading: I discovered that I could get “The Tar-Aym Krang” for my nook and that sent me off on a reread of ALL the Flinx and Pip novels. With Sliding Scales coming up, I am reaching the new-to-me stories in this series.
    I’m taking a short break before I embark on the final Flinx and Pip stories, something caused me to thin of Patricia Rice’s “The Formidable Lord Quentin” so I am re-reading that book before I complete Flinx and Pip.
    I am looking into the Robin Hobb and Sharon Shinn books that Ann Gracie has mentioned. I’ll be getting these from my library at this time.
    And for Television watching — I’m currently watching Season 2 of the Miss Fisher mysteries (recommended to me here by Mary Jo) and I’m thoroughly enjoying these.

    Reply
  33. As for my reading: I discovered that I could get “The Tar-Aym Krang” for my nook and that sent me off on a reread of ALL the Flinx and Pip novels. With Sliding Scales coming up, I am reaching the new-to-me stories in this series.
    I’m taking a short break before I embark on the final Flinx and Pip stories, something caused me to thin of Patricia Rice’s “The Formidable Lord Quentin” so I am re-reading that book before I complete Flinx and Pip.
    I am looking into the Robin Hobb and Sharon Shinn books that Ann Gracie has mentioned. I’ll be getting these from my library at this time.
    And for Television watching — I’m currently watching Season 2 of the Miss Fisher mysteries (recommended to me here by Mary Jo) and I’m thoroughly enjoying these.

    Reply
  34. As for my reading: I discovered that I could get “The Tar-Aym Krang” for my nook and that sent me off on a reread of ALL the Flinx and Pip novels. With Sliding Scales coming up, I am reaching the new-to-me stories in this series.
    I’m taking a short break before I embark on the final Flinx and Pip stories, something caused me to thin of Patricia Rice’s “The Formidable Lord Quentin” so I am re-reading that book before I complete Flinx and Pip.
    I am looking into the Robin Hobb and Sharon Shinn books that Ann Gracie has mentioned. I’ll be getting these from my library at this time.
    And for Television watching — I’m currently watching Season 2 of the Miss Fisher mysteries (recommended to me here by Mary Jo) and I’m thoroughly enjoying these.

    Reply
  35. As for my reading: I discovered that I could get “The Tar-Aym Krang” for my nook and that sent me off on a reread of ALL the Flinx and Pip novels. With Sliding Scales coming up, I am reaching the new-to-me stories in this series.
    I’m taking a short break before I embark on the final Flinx and Pip stories, something caused me to thin of Patricia Rice’s “The Formidable Lord Quentin” so I am re-reading that book before I complete Flinx and Pip.
    I am looking into the Robin Hobb and Sharon Shinn books that Ann Gracie has mentioned. I’ll be getting these from my library at this time.
    And for Television watching — I’m currently watching Season 2 of the Miss Fisher mysteries (recommended to me here by Mary Jo) and I’m thoroughly enjoying these.

    Reply
  36. Hi,
    Love Lucifer with Tom Ellis (from the Miranda Comedy Show – that is where I saw him first and loved him). Love the humor (my father did that) and action between Lucifer and others. Also love Castle – have been watching from the beginning of the series. The story lines are good and keep moving so you don’t get bored. Both stories are very enjoyable and refreshing. Don’t like all the reality shows – want some fantasy and comedy.

    Reply
  37. Hi,
    Love Lucifer with Tom Ellis (from the Miranda Comedy Show – that is where I saw him first and loved him). Love the humor (my father did that) and action between Lucifer and others. Also love Castle – have been watching from the beginning of the series. The story lines are good and keep moving so you don’t get bored. Both stories are very enjoyable and refreshing. Don’t like all the reality shows – want some fantasy and comedy.

    Reply
  38. Hi,
    Love Lucifer with Tom Ellis (from the Miranda Comedy Show – that is where I saw him first and loved him). Love the humor (my father did that) and action between Lucifer and others. Also love Castle – have been watching from the beginning of the series. The story lines are good and keep moving so you don’t get bored. Both stories are very enjoyable and refreshing. Don’t like all the reality shows – want some fantasy and comedy.

    Reply
  39. Hi,
    Love Lucifer with Tom Ellis (from the Miranda Comedy Show – that is where I saw him first and loved him). Love the humor (my father did that) and action between Lucifer and others. Also love Castle – have been watching from the beginning of the series. The story lines are good and keep moving so you don’t get bored. Both stories are very enjoyable and refreshing. Don’t like all the reality shows – want some fantasy and comedy.

    Reply
  40. Hi,
    Love Lucifer with Tom Ellis (from the Miranda Comedy Show – that is where I saw him first and loved him). Love the humor (my father did that) and action between Lucifer and others. Also love Castle – have been watching from the beginning of the series. The story lines are good and keep moving so you don’t get bored. Both stories are very enjoyable and refreshing. Don’t like all the reality shows – want some fantasy and comedy.

    Reply
  41. In my TBW (To Be Watched) pile I have The Martian; War and Peace bluray; Pillars of the Earth and World Without End; Legend (the shortlived TV series); The King’s Speech (new bluray); Pride & Prejudice Having a Ball; Snow Babies; Spectre; Small Island; Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky, and a slew of older titles I want to watch again. The Coroner and Grantchester 2 are on order.
    I understand what Sharon said about winding up buying the dvd sets. I started doing that several years ago. However, now with streaming, I venture to predict that in a couple of years, more and more Brit series will be available via Netflix, amazon, et al. sooner rather than later. For the distributors, selling licenses to half a dozen streaming outlets beats trying to rent them to a zillion different TV station outlets. The downside of this is that in a while it may not always be possible to buy a dvd of a series because the demand isn’t there to make it worthwhile to issue them, and when they go off license with the streaming company, they’re just gone. Unless you have a genius 8 year old in the family who has figured out how to record them for you.
    Sharon also remarked that it seems like there are fewer historical romances around than there used to be, and I have seen that myself. I was in Barnes & Noble last night, all primed to relive the old days and come away with an armload of romance paperbacks (I had coupons, I was on a mission) – and I couldn’t find any I wanted that I didn’t already have. I came away with a Raymond Chandler book, the latest issue of Filmfax and two greeting cards 🙁

    Reply
  42. In my TBW (To Be Watched) pile I have The Martian; War and Peace bluray; Pillars of the Earth and World Without End; Legend (the shortlived TV series); The King’s Speech (new bluray); Pride & Prejudice Having a Ball; Snow Babies; Spectre; Small Island; Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky, and a slew of older titles I want to watch again. The Coroner and Grantchester 2 are on order.
    I understand what Sharon said about winding up buying the dvd sets. I started doing that several years ago. However, now with streaming, I venture to predict that in a couple of years, more and more Brit series will be available via Netflix, amazon, et al. sooner rather than later. For the distributors, selling licenses to half a dozen streaming outlets beats trying to rent them to a zillion different TV station outlets. The downside of this is that in a while it may not always be possible to buy a dvd of a series because the demand isn’t there to make it worthwhile to issue them, and when they go off license with the streaming company, they’re just gone. Unless you have a genius 8 year old in the family who has figured out how to record them for you.
    Sharon also remarked that it seems like there are fewer historical romances around than there used to be, and I have seen that myself. I was in Barnes & Noble last night, all primed to relive the old days and come away with an armload of romance paperbacks (I had coupons, I was on a mission) – and I couldn’t find any I wanted that I didn’t already have. I came away with a Raymond Chandler book, the latest issue of Filmfax and two greeting cards 🙁

    Reply
  43. In my TBW (To Be Watched) pile I have The Martian; War and Peace bluray; Pillars of the Earth and World Without End; Legend (the shortlived TV series); The King’s Speech (new bluray); Pride & Prejudice Having a Ball; Snow Babies; Spectre; Small Island; Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky, and a slew of older titles I want to watch again. The Coroner and Grantchester 2 are on order.
    I understand what Sharon said about winding up buying the dvd sets. I started doing that several years ago. However, now with streaming, I venture to predict that in a couple of years, more and more Brit series will be available via Netflix, amazon, et al. sooner rather than later. For the distributors, selling licenses to half a dozen streaming outlets beats trying to rent them to a zillion different TV station outlets. The downside of this is that in a while it may not always be possible to buy a dvd of a series because the demand isn’t there to make it worthwhile to issue them, and when they go off license with the streaming company, they’re just gone. Unless you have a genius 8 year old in the family who has figured out how to record them for you.
    Sharon also remarked that it seems like there are fewer historical romances around than there used to be, and I have seen that myself. I was in Barnes & Noble last night, all primed to relive the old days and come away with an armload of romance paperbacks (I had coupons, I was on a mission) – and I couldn’t find any I wanted that I didn’t already have. I came away with a Raymond Chandler book, the latest issue of Filmfax and two greeting cards 🙁

    Reply
  44. In my TBW (To Be Watched) pile I have The Martian; War and Peace bluray; Pillars of the Earth and World Without End; Legend (the shortlived TV series); The King’s Speech (new bluray); Pride & Prejudice Having a Ball; Snow Babies; Spectre; Small Island; Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky, and a slew of older titles I want to watch again. The Coroner and Grantchester 2 are on order.
    I understand what Sharon said about winding up buying the dvd sets. I started doing that several years ago. However, now with streaming, I venture to predict that in a couple of years, more and more Brit series will be available via Netflix, amazon, et al. sooner rather than later. For the distributors, selling licenses to half a dozen streaming outlets beats trying to rent them to a zillion different TV station outlets. The downside of this is that in a while it may not always be possible to buy a dvd of a series because the demand isn’t there to make it worthwhile to issue them, and when they go off license with the streaming company, they’re just gone. Unless you have a genius 8 year old in the family who has figured out how to record them for you.
    Sharon also remarked that it seems like there are fewer historical romances around than there used to be, and I have seen that myself. I was in Barnes & Noble last night, all primed to relive the old days and come away with an armload of romance paperbacks (I had coupons, I was on a mission) – and I couldn’t find any I wanted that I didn’t already have. I came away with a Raymond Chandler book, the latest issue of Filmfax and two greeting cards 🙁

    Reply
  45. In my TBW (To Be Watched) pile I have The Martian; War and Peace bluray; Pillars of the Earth and World Without End; Legend (the shortlived TV series); The King’s Speech (new bluray); Pride & Prejudice Having a Ball; Snow Babies; Spectre; Small Island; Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky, and a slew of older titles I want to watch again. The Coroner and Grantchester 2 are on order.
    I understand what Sharon said about winding up buying the dvd sets. I started doing that several years ago. However, now with streaming, I venture to predict that in a couple of years, more and more Brit series will be available via Netflix, amazon, et al. sooner rather than later. For the distributors, selling licenses to half a dozen streaming outlets beats trying to rent them to a zillion different TV station outlets. The downside of this is that in a while it may not always be possible to buy a dvd of a series because the demand isn’t there to make it worthwhile to issue them, and when they go off license with the streaming company, they’re just gone. Unless you have a genius 8 year old in the family who has figured out how to record them for you.
    Sharon also remarked that it seems like there are fewer historical romances around than there used to be, and I have seen that myself. I was in Barnes & Noble last night, all primed to relive the old days and come away with an armload of romance paperbacks (I had coupons, I was on a mission) – and I couldn’t find any I wanted that I didn’t already have. I came away with a Raymond Chandler book, the latest issue of Filmfax and two greeting cards 🙁

    Reply
  46. I am also having a problem finding historicals at the store, I find myself reading more and more of them on Kindle and Scribd. I found a new author, Alice Wallis-Eton, who is writing a Regency spy series. The first book is called “The Cryptographer”, definitely worth checking out.

    Reply
  47. I am also having a problem finding historicals at the store, I find myself reading more and more of them on Kindle and Scribd. I found a new author, Alice Wallis-Eton, who is writing a Regency spy series. The first book is called “The Cryptographer”, definitely worth checking out.

    Reply
  48. I am also having a problem finding historicals at the store, I find myself reading more and more of them on Kindle and Scribd. I found a new author, Alice Wallis-Eton, who is writing a Regency spy series. The first book is called “The Cryptographer”, definitely worth checking out.

    Reply
  49. I am also having a problem finding historicals at the store, I find myself reading more and more of them on Kindle and Scribd. I found a new author, Alice Wallis-Eton, who is writing a Regency spy series. The first book is called “The Cryptographer”, definitely worth checking out.

    Reply
  50. I am also having a problem finding historicals at the store, I find myself reading more and more of them on Kindle and Scribd. I found a new author, Alice Wallis-Eton, who is writing a Regency spy series. The first book is called “The Cryptographer”, definitely worth checking out.

    Reply
  51. I really enjoyed Carla Kelly’s Doing No Harm also.
    Some recent reads here include ~
    C. S. Pacat’s Captive Prince as well as the rest of the Captive Prince Trilogy;
    Act Like It which was a very enjoyable contemporary romance by Lucy Parker;
    The Score (Off-Campus Book 3) by Elle Kennedy which I enjoyed;
    Confucius Jane: A Novel by Katie Lynch;
    Pamela Clare’s Seduction Game: An I-Team Novel. I ultimately enjoyed it, but the hero certainly did some unsavory things during the course of the book;
    Consent by Nancy Ohlin (This one raises issues as it deals with the relationship that develops between a seventeen year old and her teacher.);
    the graphic novel The Sculptor by Scott McCloud which was quite good;
    re-reads of Patricia Briggs’ Moon Called, Michele Diener’s science fiction romance Dark Horse, and The Mistake by Elle Kennedy ;
    A SEAL Forever (West Coast Navy SEALs) by Anne Elizabeth. It was a pleasant read, but it fell a little short;
    Off the Clock: A Pleasure Principle novel by Roni Loren;
    and a host of Zentangle books.

    Reply
  52. I really enjoyed Carla Kelly’s Doing No Harm also.
    Some recent reads here include ~
    C. S. Pacat’s Captive Prince as well as the rest of the Captive Prince Trilogy;
    Act Like It which was a very enjoyable contemporary romance by Lucy Parker;
    The Score (Off-Campus Book 3) by Elle Kennedy which I enjoyed;
    Confucius Jane: A Novel by Katie Lynch;
    Pamela Clare’s Seduction Game: An I-Team Novel. I ultimately enjoyed it, but the hero certainly did some unsavory things during the course of the book;
    Consent by Nancy Ohlin (This one raises issues as it deals with the relationship that develops between a seventeen year old and her teacher.);
    the graphic novel The Sculptor by Scott McCloud which was quite good;
    re-reads of Patricia Briggs’ Moon Called, Michele Diener’s science fiction romance Dark Horse, and The Mistake by Elle Kennedy ;
    A SEAL Forever (West Coast Navy SEALs) by Anne Elizabeth. It was a pleasant read, but it fell a little short;
    Off the Clock: A Pleasure Principle novel by Roni Loren;
    and a host of Zentangle books.

    Reply
  53. I really enjoyed Carla Kelly’s Doing No Harm also.
    Some recent reads here include ~
    C. S. Pacat’s Captive Prince as well as the rest of the Captive Prince Trilogy;
    Act Like It which was a very enjoyable contemporary romance by Lucy Parker;
    The Score (Off-Campus Book 3) by Elle Kennedy which I enjoyed;
    Confucius Jane: A Novel by Katie Lynch;
    Pamela Clare’s Seduction Game: An I-Team Novel. I ultimately enjoyed it, but the hero certainly did some unsavory things during the course of the book;
    Consent by Nancy Ohlin (This one raises issues as it deals with the relationship that develops between a seventeen year old and her teacher.);
    the graphic novel The Sculptor by Scott McCloud which was quite good;
    re-reads of Patricia Briggs’ Moon Called, Michele Diener’s science fiction romance Dark Horse, and The Mistake by Elle Kennedy ;
    A SEAL Forever (West Coast Navy SEALs) by Anne Elizabeth. It was a pleasant read, but it fell a little short;
    Off the Clock: A Pleasure Principle novel by Roni Loren;
    and a host of Zentangle books.

    Reply
  54. I really enjoyed Carla Kelly’s Doing No Harm also.
    Some recent reads here include ~
    C. S. Pacat’s Captive Prince as well as the rest of the Captive Prince Trilogy;
    Act Like It which was a very enjoyable contemporary romance by Lucy Parker;
    The Score (Off-Campus Book 3) by Elle Kennedy which I enjoyed;
    Confucius Jane: A Novel by Katie Lynch;
    Pamela Clare’s Seduction Game: An I-Team Novel. I ultimately enjoyed it, but the hero certainly did some unsavory things during the course of the book;
    Consent by Nancy Ohlin (This one raises issues as it deals with the relationship that develops between a seventeen year old and her teacher.);
    the graphic novel The Sculptor by Scott McCloud which was quite good;
    re-reads of Patricia Briggs’ Moon Called, Michele Diener’s science fiction romance Dark Horse, and The Mistake by Elle Kennedy ;
    A SEAL Forever (West Coast Navy SEALs) by Anne Elizabeth. It was a pleasant read, but it fell a little short;
    Off the Clock: A Pleasure Principle novel by Roni Loren;
    and a host of Zentangle books.

    Reply
  55. I really enjoyed Carla Kelly’s Doing No Harm also.
    Some recent reads here include ~
    C. S. Pacat’s Captive Prince as well as the rest of the Captive Prince Trilogy;
    Act Like It which was a very enjoyable contemporary romance by Lucy Parker;
    The Score (Off-Campus Book 3) by Elle Kennedy which I enjoyed;
    Confucius Jane: A Novel by Katie Lynch;
    Pamela Clare’s Seduction Game: An I-Team Novel. I ultimately enjoyed it, but the hero certainly did some unsavory things during the course of the book;
    Consent by Nancy Ohlin (This one raises issues as it deals with the relationship that develops between a seventeen year old and her teacher.);
    the graphic novel The Sculptor by Scott McCloud which was quite good;
    re-reads of Patricia Briggs’ Moon Called, Michele Diener’s science fiction romance Dark Horse, and The Mistake by Elle Kennedy ;
    A SEAL Forever (West Coast Navy SEALs) by Anne Elizabeth. It was a pleasant read, but it fell a little short;
    Off the Clock: A Pleasure Principle novel by Roni Loren;
    and a host of Zentangle books.

    Reply

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