I’m an emotional reader, picking up a book based on what I’m feeling at that exact moment. I typically read as many as seven books or more at a time, both fiction and non-fiction. As a result, sometimes it can take me a long time to finish a book. I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in this habit and that there is a lot of concurrent reading going on in the world!
On a dreary day when I’ve done all my chores and need a distraction from the writing I should be doing (hah!), there’s nothing better than a cozy mystery, such as the Booktown mysteries by Lorna Barrett. In the mornings when I’m getting ready for work and don’t want to tune into the horrible news of the day, I listen to something from Audible (Right now it’s The Golden Tresses of the Dead by Alan Bradley) When I’m traveling, I treat myself to something from the airport bookstore to distract me on long flights, such as The Woman in Cabin 10.
And in the winter, I hunker down with solid, cerebral reads to combat the dark and dreary climate. I seem to gravitate to books that are dense and intense, almost like a bowl of rich stew or a hearty soup, and with the same delicious result, such as Elmet, by Fiona Mozley or A Gentleman in Moscow, by Amor Towels.
Now Spring is on its way, and beach read season is around the corner. Here’s a little taste of what’s on my nightstand and devices, followed by the "coming soon" books I can’t wait to be released.
Currently on my nightstand:
Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng
Prairie Fires, Caroline Fraser
Lad: A Dog, Albert Payson Terhune
The Meaning of Maggie, Jean Sovern
Angel, Elizabeth Taylor
The Golden Tresses of the Dead, Alan Bradley (Audible)
The Bone Runners, Karen Turkal (Kindle)
And I’m eagerly anticipating the following releases!
Book Woman of Troublesome Creek by Kim Michele Richardson and Call Your Daughter Home by Deb Spera. My current novel-in-progress (as in, I’m on the third re-write) is set during the Great Depression, so I’m anxious to read other books set during that time period.
Love and Death Among the Cheetahs, book 11 in Her Royal Spyness series, by Rhys Bowen and A Killer Mystery, by Lorna Barrett, are light reading that will arrive just in time for entertaining beach and pool-side reading
I am a Murder She Wrote freak for light reading (my dog’s name is Jessica Fletcher). The next installment in the franchise, A Time for Murder, arrives in November. Ah, something to look forward to as the cool Autumnal days settle in to stay.
What's on your nightstand?
A Note on Murder She Wrote
This is my dear, sweet Jessica Fletcher! For those of you not familiar with the Murder She Wrote franchise, here's a brief overview. Angela Lansbury starred in this cozy mystery drama as a late-in-life bestselling author, who bested law enforcement as an amateur sleuth. When she wasn't traveling to promote her books, Jessica was solving murders in her beloved home town of Cabot Cove, Maine. The show was extremely popular and ran for 12 seasons between 1984 and 1996. Jessica was a kind, thoughtful, smart and successful woman who enjoyed small-town living and international success. Sounds like the perfect life to me!
At first I didn’t know what to make of this book. It seemed like Don Quixote meets the Ghost of Christmas past in a Vermont Bread and Breakfast setting with a twist of romance and a fairy godmother thrown in. But after reading through to the end, I discovered that throwing all this together in a story was not necessarily a bad thing!
I was intrigued by the character of Alexis (the fairy godmother inspired character), who charms Blake, the main character, with her quirky, loveable, and mysterious personality. When she promises Blake that she can heal his broken heart in twenty-four hours, my interest was piqued, and I wanted to know more about her, which kept me reading. Was she real? Or a figment of Blake’s imagination? Would Blake wake up and realize it was all a dream? I didn’t know…so I kept reading. And after all, isn’t that the sign of a good storyteller?
The themes of kindness and generosity of spirit were presented in an original way, not in a preachy, moralistic message.
I would have liked to have seen more back story about the characters, besides the heartache of lost love. After all, we are more than our experiences, and always more than what other people think we are. Our lives don’t happen in a vacuum, and I would have appreciated a broader view.
But all in all, this was a fun, sweet read.
Follow Mel Walker on his Amazon Author Page
Other books by Mel Walker: The Lonely Place and Second Chances