My 75 books List 2018
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Happy New Year
Happy New Group here
This place is full of friends
I hope it never ends
It brew of erudition and good cheer.
Book #1 for 2018
Jek/Hyde by Amy Ross
This was an audiobook version I received by accident through the Early Reviewers program.
I won a book but when it came the packaging was all right but the actual recording on the cd was this book Jek/Hyde. It is a teen romance retelling of Stevenson's Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Wild party's, drugs, sex, murder make this a lovely book to start 2018 off. I was not impressed with this at all. But I stuck with it and finished it.
I have to say I found the author's afterword about how she rediscovered the classic the best part of the whole book.
Made me want to read the original. Don't waste your time on this one.
Living Testimonies Book 1 edited by Mickey Pritchard
Great book of testimonies of Jesus Christ compiled from church members. I first read this years ago but decided to go back and reread it just before the start of the year. Just finished it today. Good way to start off the New Year with a strengthening of my faith which I've been struggling with lately.
Book # 3
Orbit by Thomas H. Block
80's scifi suspense involving a Supersonic plane launched accidentally into orbit and the rescue attempts by space shuttle. Disaster movie stuff. Entertaining read.
Book # 4
The White Dress by Mignon G. Eberhart
Good old fashioned mystery. A little overly romantic/soap operaish. But the mystery is good and the setting is interesting, a Florida island mansion during a hurricane. I had always thought Mignon G. Eberhart was a man and the writing was more gritty crime but I found out she is a woman and that she was the Agatha Christie of the US. She actually created a female detective series just before Christie's Miss Marple debuted, although the series didn't last long. Eberhart had a terrific output of stand alone mysteries though.
Book # 5
From Palmyra To The Present: Second Quarter Student Book by Lois Q. Shipley
Simple to read self published book of Church history of the RLDS. Complete with questions and puzzles to complete the lessons. Good basis to get to know the history of the church.
Book # 6
Fair Game by Paula Gosling
A run of the mill actioner about a young lady who witnesses a hit man in action then is targeted by hit man and protected by a hard nosed cop with Vietnam war issues. This was apparently originally a story or book published in England then reprinted and expanded in America. Set in Northern California. Made into at least two movies, Cobra with Sly Stallone and Fair Game with William Baldwin and Cindy Crawford. Have not seen either one.
Book # 7
The Smithsonian Collection: Old Time Radio Mysteries by Various Artists
Excellent collection of 12 different episodes of old time radio mystery shows, some supernatural, some straight forward mysteries, all interesting and entertaining.
I love old time radio shows.
Book # 8
Tarry And Be Hanged by Sara Woods
A mystery in the grand English tradition. This book was missing it's front cover when I got it and judging by the back cover I always kind of mistook it for a romantic/gothic read. Once again I was mistaken. Discovered it was one of a series of books featuring a British attorney Antony Maitland. Turned out to be a traditional mystery, very enjoyable. The actual story called him Antony while the book cover called him Anthony which is a whole different mystery.
By the way if it seems like I'm reading a lot of mysteries lately that is the theme of our library's Winter Reading Challenge.
Chobits: Volume 8 by Clamp
My first foray into Manga. Interesting. Hard to get used to reading a book (even a graphic novel) upside down and backwards.
I would be willing to read more.
Tales For A Stormy Night: A Pandora's Box Of Classic Chillers by Various Artists
This was a fun eclectic collection. Stories by Poe, Stevenson, Lovecraft, Wharton, James etc. Some read, some dramatized with sound effects. An eclectic group of readers also. Great for listening while driving. I had a lot of fun with this. Some stories I had heard or read before, some new ones that I enjoyed hearing for the first time. Forgot to say CD collection.
Book # 11
The Chopin Manuscript: A Serial Thriller by Jeffrey Deaver, etc.
This book caught my eye at the library and I thought I'd give it a try. I'd never read Jeffrey Deaver or any of the other authors except for Lee Child. I usually like these kind of action thrillers, so this book which is a kind of game sounded interesting. Jeffrey Deaver writes the first chapter setting up characters and situations then passes it on to another author and 14 or so chapters later everyone has had a turn at adding to the story then Mr. Deaver wraps things up in the last two chapters.
Sounds fun right? Not so much. The idea is cool and the story starts out interesting, but as one reviewer put it there are too many cooks. Characters and situations come and go with no rhyme or reason. Interesting characters introduced in one chapter are killed off in the next and you need to a flow chart to keep track of everyone, their connections and aliases. Confusing to say the least.
This was apparently originally an audiobook read by Alfred Molina and I read a good review of it so maybe but the printed edition I read was hard to follow and irritating.
There is a sequel in which they do it again but I think I'll skip it.
Dark Flowers by Caytlyn Brooke
Early Reviewers downloaded audio book. Some YA drivel too dark and creepy for my YA in my opinion. Did not like.
Unholy Mourning by David Lippincott
Horror novel about the mortuary industry. Car wreck of a novel, didn't want to finish it but couldn't stop looking to see what would happen.
Run of the mill plot hole filled 80's horror.
The Last Starfighter by Alan Dean Foster
Movie tie in. Loved the movie back in the 80's. Enjoyed the book. Alan Dean Foster has always been great at these movie tie in books. This has been a fun fast read, long enough distance from the movie that most of it is fresh in my mind. Good time. Escapist.
Book # 15
Perry Mason: The Case Of The Beautiful Beggar by Erle Stanley Gardner
Another classic court room mystery. Good, fun, read.
Book # 16
Fourth Down To Death: A New Mike Shayne Mystery by Brett Halliday
Old fashioned hard-boiled private eye takes on the insider scoop on football and gambling. fun, quick and interesting read.
Book # 17
The Fury: A Novel by John Farris
Read by Joe Barrett. Won this in the Early Reviewers. Good listen, put off by the gratuitous sex scenes but otherwise entertaining. Joe Barrett was very good with voices.
70s horror scifi.
Book # 18
Stagecoach West by William Hueman
A Gold Medal Book from the 1950's. This was fun, pretty formulaic western with stereotypical characters, but when you don't read a lot of them it was kind of refreshing to go back to basics.
Quick read at 128 pages.
The J. R. R. Tolkien Audio Collection by J. R. R. Tolkien
Sometime in the early 1970's Tolkien recorded some readings from his works. These are here as well as later readings by his son Christopher. Sound quality is not the best but who can resist hearing tales and songs of Middle Earth in the master's own voice? The passages read by Christopher from the Silmarrillion were a little long, but otherwise this is a fun listen.
Redwall by Brian Jacques
A fun light fantasy book about a medieval world of mice and other woodland creatures and a battle with an army of evil rats. Not too childish and not too adult a nice mixture.
Book # 21
Focus On The Family Radio Theatre: C. S. Lewis' The Screwtape Letters
Very entertaining radio theatre version of the book about a senior devil writing to his nephew about how to work on his "patient". Humorous but deep theology also. Andy Serkis does the voice of Screwtape!! Fun.
Book # 22
A Touch Of Death by Charles Williams
A Hard Case Crime book. They publish classic noir thrillers. I love these books. And this is one of my favorites. I read it once before and was still on the edge of my seat by the end.
Inside The Deep by Peter Guber
I enjoyed this book more than I expected. In the aftermath of Jaws in the 1970's Peter Guber became a movie producer and bought the rights to Peter Benchley's next novel The Deep. This is a book detailing the production of the film. I found it interesting to read about the behind the scenes efforts to get this movie made.
Book # 24
97 Ways To Make A Baby Laugh by Jack Moore
Humorous cute little book of baby pictures and ideas to keep a baby entertained.
TV Time '79 by Peggy Herz
A book I've had since I was in school but never took the time to read. Scholastic Book Services book with ten stories about tv shows and stars of the day. Quick easy read, kind of fun to go back and read about these shows some 40 years later. Nostalgia trip. Quick easy read.
Book # 26
Icerigger by Alan Dean Foster
This was a fun adventure/scifi/fantasy. Good fun and great characters.
Book # 27
Circus by Alistair MacLean
Spy story with circus performers.
Interesting ideas, was a bit disappointed in the execution of the story. seemed disjointed in parts. Could have been so much better.
Book # 28
Good Morning, Harry-Good Night, Daddy by Kate Beebe
Won this in the Early Reviewers program.
Very good children's book. Reminded me of books I enjoyed as a child. the story is warm and engaging, with just the right amount of rhyming. The illustrations are splendid. A very sweet book, good for bedtime reading or anytime. Lovely.
Book # 29
The Lion King (Read Along Book & Tape) by The Walt Disney Company
Good adaptation for kids of the The Lion King movie. Quick read or listen with music and sound effects.
Book # 30
Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs (Read Along Book & Tape) by The Walt Disney Company
Another classic by Disney. Easy to read or listen to. Also included a CD version (missing from mine) that could be listened to or played on a computer with visuals.
Mad Hatters And March Hares: All-New Stories From The World Of Lewis Carroll's Alice In Wonderland edited by Ellen Datlow
Won this in the early reviewers program.
I usually enjoy stories that take place in an established world with established characters but kind of put interesting spins on those places. This is a collection of short stories with a couple of poems mixed in by different authors all based on Alice In Wonderland.
Pretty enjoyable, kind of a mixed bag. some of these stories I really enjoyed others not so much. all were interesting. Some were too dark for my taste. The readers did a good job on some stories, while others they seemed to be just reading.
A note on the format. This was the audio version on MP3 CDs. These are CDs that won't play anywhere except a computer, I find these annoying because I have to download them to my PC, then upload them to an MP3 player to listen to. Regular CDs would be so much more enjoyable and easy.
Book # 32
The Dennis Wheatley Library Of The Occult: The Return Of The Magi by Maurice Magre
Dry, somewhat interesting translation of a French text on secret societies such as the Knights Templar.
Book # 33
Twisted True Tales From Science: Disaster Discoveries by Stephanie Bearce
Won this from Early Reviewers.
This was an entertaining read. Designed for grade school age children it tells about acts of nature and man made disasters, tsunamis, hurricanes, tornados, floods, volcanos and the like. explaining the possible causes of these as well as telling the history of them. Also tells of people who work in fields related to these disasters and how they put their lives on the line to help us understand disasters.
this book is divided into short chapters, with very nice illustrations. It also includes experiments and crafts that you can do at home or at school to learn more about weather conditions and the like. Has a nice bibliography and tools for further reading. Really enjoyable and interesting.
Book # 34
Disney's The Rescuers/Disney's The Jungle Book by Walt Disney Productions
Read Along Books and Tape. Elementary age level but fun to relive these classic movies/stories.
Book # 35
Disney's The Fox And The Hound/Winnie The Pooh And The Honey Tree by Walt Disney Productions
Read along Books and Tape again. Another couple of classic Disney movies/stories.
Dear Sir by Juliet Lowell
Very funny compilation of letters from draft boards and various government agencies during WWII. Small quick easy read but very funny. Supposed to be actual letters.
Book # 37
Focus On The Family: A Man Called Norman Part One/A Man Called Norman Part Two/Farewell To A Friend Called Norman by Mike Adkins & Dr. James Dobson
Very good heartwarming story. Cassette tape of a wonderful, funny, uplifting story.
Book # 38
Restoration Church Sermon: SCRB Women's Retreat 03/10/2001 Evening Service by Jim Bailey & Dan Elliott
Very good sermon tape on families and family values. Love both of these men.
Book # 39
Book Of Mormon Stories For Children by Nina Maloney
Good dramatized stories from the Book Of Mormon. An old old recording,
Book # 40
Ship Of Spies by Gerald Sinstadt
Very good, interesting British espionage novel. Much better than I anticipated. I enjoyed this. I understand the author only wrote one other novel.
Book # 41
Disney's The Fox And The Hound by Disney Productions
This is just a copy of the book missing the cassette to listen to. Very good classic Disney story.
Book # 42
Walt Disney Presents The Story Of Bambi/Walt Disney Presents Mother Goose Rhymes by Walt Disney Productions
Another Disney Classic, I know these are childish, but it's been fun to listen to.
Book # 43
Two Black Crows/Camelot: Music From The Broadway Show by Moran & Mack/101 Strings
Two Black Crows was an old vaudeville act, kind of a forerunner of Amos & Andy. Funny country bumpkin humor in an old 1923 recording.
Book # 44
The Alienist by Caleb Carr
Second read of this one. I enjoyed it more the second time for some reason. Good mystery/suspense history novel. Fun read.
Book # 45
The Mysterious Shrinking House by Jane Louise Curry
A book that was light, easy to read and fun. Went in unexpected directions. A Scholastic book that I would have enjoyed as a kid, took me back to my joy of reading these kind of books!!
Book # 46
The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
Read this in honor of my friend Harold Dellinger who passed a few weeks ago and knew more about Civil War history than any one man I know.
At first I felt a little disappointed in the writing and thought this isn't really going to be as good as everyone says, but a few more pages into it and I couldn't put it down. Told from the several viewpoints of various commanders, this is the story of the Battle of Gettysburg. It doesn't play favorites with sides of the Civil War, but tells the story plainly from both sides and places the reader in the middle of the Battle. There are battle scenes like I have never read before, could almost smell the powder on the wind and hear the Rebel Yell and gun fire.
Then I realized I'm reading this 155 years to the day that this happened. This book was so good I wondered which side would come out ahead.
Even though this is historical "fiction" it was written from letters and journals and this book should be required reading in all American History classes.
Civil War revisionists be damned!
Book # 47
Protector by Larry Niven
Nice to go from a turn of the century serial killer mystery to a Civil War historical fiction to a hard science fiction novel set way in the future about man's first contact with aliens.
This is why I love reading!!!
Always think Niven will be hard to understand for some reason but I've enjoyed several of his books and this was a fun interesting read, short and quick but thought provoking.
The Man From The Train: The Solving Of A Century-Old Serial Killer Mystery by Bill James & Rachel McCarthy James
Enjoyed this audiobook. Although it seemed to bog down in a few places and kind of overwhelmed with facts it was an interesting read.
Book # 49
Sermon At Belton Restoration Branch by Priest Richard Mbeche
Very good sermon from a Priest from Kenya.
Book # 50
My Sweet Audrina by V. C. Andrews
Didn't expect to like this novel. Still not sure if I did like it. My first experience with V. C. Andrews. Disturbing. Weird. Gothic. Interesting. I didn't want to finish it but at the same time couldn't put it down. Weird. Disturbing.
Book # 51
Arrow Book Of Poetry edited by Ann McGovern
Nice little book of classic poetry on different themes. A Scholastic book. Very enjoyable.
Book # 52
An Alice In Bibleland Storybook: The Story Of Jonah by Alice Joyce Davidson
Cute little rhyming book of the story of Jonah. would be perfect to read to young children.
Book # 53
Amos 'N' Andy by Various Artists
Old radio shows, pretty funny. Controversial because white actors played black characters.
Book # 54
Delaney by Gilbert Morris
Read this one again. A hard boiled detective story where the detective is a born again Christian. Good story, could have been a series.
Book # 55
Sermon At Restoration Branch 12-03-89 6PM by Elder Ron Gamble
Awesome Sermon listened to once again. Nobody preaches like Ron Gamble.
Book # 56
Muskogi Sunset: The Second Creek War Of 1836 by Larry Williamson
I received this book from the Early Reviewers group and I was so excited to get this one.
This book I looked forward to more than any other book I've received.
The book Muskogi Sunset: The Second Creek War Of 1836 takes place in Alabama and Georgia in 1836. Andrew Jackson is President after having fought the Creek (Muskogi) Indians in Alabama in 1813-1814. Jackson has passed a law that orders the removal of the Indians from the area and transplants them out West in new lands.
This happens along the Tallapoosa river in mideastern Alabama and Midwestern Georgia.
The Indians are not happy to have to leave their ancestral homes, many of them have been given land grants by the Federal Government. The settlers in the area most get along peacefully with the Creek people and they all just want to live in peaceful coexistence. The army comes in with agents to enforce the removal and begins to round up Indian families to various stockades around the area to prepare for the trip West. Also shady characters come along with various schemes to cheat the Indians out of their rightfully held lands.
This story unfolds as a historical novel told with a blend of real historical characters and fictionalized people, especially the Murph family which were featured in Mr. Williamson's previous novel, Tallapoosa.
My father is from Heflin, Alabama, a small town on the Tallapoosa river, north of where this novel is placed, and I can remember as a child my grandfather taking us to Horseshoe Bend National Military Park where Jackson fought with the Creeks in 1813-1814. But I never knew too much about the times or the troubles. I was excited to read about this time period and I learned a lot, not only from reading this story, but from further research on the people and places.
Larry Williamson has done a fine job telling this story, it is exciting, tragic, humorous, and heartbreaking. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves history. I recently read The Killer Angels, a Civil War novel, that was excellent and I believe Muskogi Sunset ranks right along side as far as historical novels go.
I am excited to track down Mr. Williamsons other books and read more about this area of geography and history.
Book # 57
Adventures In Odyssey: The Pretty Good Samaritan by Focus On The Family
Awesome radio theater style good for kids and adults alike. Teaching Christian values in a fun listening experience.
Book # 58
Gwendy's Button Box by Stephen King & Richard Chizmar
I'm a Stephen King fan and was looking forward to this one. It is interesting but never seems to pick up steam and get moving like King usually does. Short quick read though.
Book # 59
The Totally Unscientific Study Of The Search For Human Happiness by Paula Poundstone
Won this in the early reviewers giveaway.
I have always enjoyed Paula Poundstone on television, and wanted to like this book. It took me several tries to get going on reading this for some reason.
Parts of it were very funny and it read as if I could hear Ms. Poundstone saying it. But it seemed to never really get moving.
It is set up as a series of experiments by Ms. Poundstone to find the secret of happiness.
Every chapter is an experiment, and is broken up into sub headings like Theory, Qualitative Observation, Analysis, etc. the first few chapters seemed overly long and the many little breaks seemed to be the reason I couldn't get into this. It didn't flow smoothly. Towards the end of the book the chapters were shorter and seemed to read better.
All in all this was funny if you are a fan of Paula Poundstone, but it wasn't quite as light reading as I expected
Book # 60
Doc Savage # 4: The Polar Treasure by Kenneth Robeson
Fun quick palate cleanser of a pulp adventure story. Love these.
Book # 61
The Best Of Boris Karloff by Various Artists
Old Radio shows starring Boris Karloff. Wonderful fun!! Everything from Inner Sanctum and Lights Out scares to laughs with Jack Benny and Charlie McCarthy and even Dickens David Copperfield.
What a talented man he was!!
Book # 62
Out Of Tune: A Riley Donovan Mystery by Norah McClintock
Received this from Early Reviewers. Apparently this is the third in a YA mystery series. I started this book thinking I wouldn't like it. I'm pretty disappointed in the state of YA books being put out these days. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. This book was really pretty good. Quick, easy read and fun. Of course I'm past being the intended audience of these books but this took me back to my days reading Hardy Boys mysteries. I could really see this being a movie or television series, I'm surprised that it hasn't yet. I am looking forward to reading more of Riley Donovan's adventures.
Book # 63
Of Stars And Men by Harlow Shapley
Science by a well known Astronomer from the 1950's. I had a hard time getting through this, found it kind of dry, but it was short and a pretty quick read.
Book # 64
The Modern Scholar: Great Professors Teaching You!: From Here To Infinity: An Exploration Of Science Fiction Literature by Professor Michael D. C. Drout
Discovered this at the library. A series of lectures with a booklet on the history of Science Fiction literature. Interesting and fun.
Family Ties by Deborah Aydt Holmes
Soap operaish novel about a powerful family from the 1920's until the 1970's. Tries to be a Dynasty style story and fairly succeeds. Almost seems like an outline at times, like there should have been more detail added. Not very good but kind of a guilty page turner.
Book # 66
Teen Superstars Trivia Quiz Book by Helen Rosenbaum
Trivia quiz about teen stars from the late 1970's pop culture.
Book # 67
The Watcher by Robert Kammen
This is a classic western, fun read, short but engaging. took some twists and turns I didn't expect. Surprised this hasn't been made into a movie.
Book # 68
Night Cry: Spring 1986
A magazine collection from the publishers of Twilight Zone Magazine. A collection of short horror stories. Some really good stories here, most fairly decent. Bram Stoker and Robert Bloch among the best.
Book # 69
The Turnkey Of Highgate Cemetery by Allison Rushby
Won this book from the Early Reviewers.
I loved this story. I found it whimsical and wonderful, humorous and touching.
I've been a bit disheartened with the turn to the supernatural that all of YA fiction has taken, but this was a pleasant surprise.
It's mysterious, a girl ghost who finds herself in charge of Highgate Cemetery, turnkeys have special powers and are responsible for making sure the interred rest peacefully.
All this in the middle of the blitz in World War II London. And there is a strange German ghost who shows up and seems to be spying on the war. This book was fun.
I could so see this as a Tim Burton film either live action or better yet stop motion.
Surprising twists and turns and wonderful settings
Book # 70
Focus On The Family Radio Theatre Presents The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe From The Chronicles Of Narnia By C. S. Lewis
Focus On The Family does wonderful radio presentations of classic stories that are some of the best dramatisations out there.
Awesome. Highly recommended!!!!
Book # 71
Fry's English Delight: Volume 1 & 2 by Stephen Fry
Funny and educational look at various parts of the English language. From cliche's to puns. He had me at hello. Even makes gibberish entertaining. Great listen!
Book # 72
Restoration Branch Sermon Summer Series 06-20-99 by Joe Burkart
Very good sermon.
Book # 73
Haunted Ground by Erin Hart
Second time for reading this book. Good, interesting mystery set in Ireland involving bog bodies and ancient history as well as a modern mystery. Fun read.
If I Were You by L. Ron Hubbard
Pulp fiction stories by L. Ron Hubbard, done dramatically on CD. These are fun to listen to, ignore the booklet about how great of an icon Hubbard was. Fun to listen to like old radio shows.
Book # 75
Towards Zero by Agatha Christie
What can I say? Dame Agatha does it again!
Book # 76
Restoration Branch Sermon: Summer Series 07-02-00 by Dan Elliott
Great sermon and awesome service.
Book # 77
The Gannon Girls by Thom Racina & Joe Johnson
Don't waste your time...
Book # 78
Fry's English Delight Series 3 by Stephen Fry
More Language studies with a touch of humor. Good listen.
Book # 79
Chattogram by Helen
A friend of mine from England sent this tape instead of a letter. Life story.
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