A Bookaholic, Pro-life, Pro-Family, Pro-Oxford Comma, Catholic (with Asperger's) who reads and writes as her obsession. I've been reading over 400 books a year lately. These are my ramblings on some of the books I read. To read about all the books I read and comment on, visit me at LibraryThing or Goodreads.

I've been blogging since 2007 and at this point (July 2015) am trying my hand at turning the theme of this blog towards mystery, thriller and crime, fiction and non-fiction. I have some special interest topics and categories within this broad genre which include (but are not limited to) serial killers, scandi-crime, Victorian history and historicals, history of the criminally insane and asylums, psychopathology, death, funerary practices and burial, corpses, true crime and anything dealing with the real life macabre, or that portrayed in fiction.

I also read a short story a day from various collections, sometimes anthologies othertimes collections of a single author's work. These reviews are also posted here and while they are of mixed genre the mystery, thriller, horror, gothic and macabre often appear within their pages as well.

I also blog about
graphic novels and manga on a separate BLOG.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Investigation Discovery Unsolved Murders, Mysteries & Crimes August/September 2015 Magazine

Investigation Discovery Unsolved Murders, Mysteries & Crimes August/September 2015 Magazine, Consultant: Joe Kenda
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Magazine, 100 pages
Publication: August 2015 by Media Lap Publishing

Great magazine on the newsstands right now (July-Sept 2015) dealing with what Investigation Discovery does best. Nothing deep here. Just a two-page spread on each case. Mostly murders, some serial with a few bank robberies and jewel heists thrown in for good measure. Pretty much all take place in the US but the heists range from Japan to the Bahamas. I read this topic a lot and was pleasantly surprised at the number of lesser-known cases that were included in here and even some I hadn't heard of. There is also a strength in curious missing persons cases which are still current and this is a good vehicle for putting their pictures back out there with contact numbers. Some of these cases are quite bizarre and yes, all the ones you'd expect to find are in here too, but overall a very good cross mix selection for all readers whether your well-read on the topic or not. It's nice to have a big glossy like this for a change rather than scrolling through the images on Pinterest. LOL

Winemaker Detective Mystery #1: Treachery in Bordeaux by Jean-Pierre Alaux

Treachery in Bordeaux by Jean-Pierre Alaux & Noël Balen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Published 2012 by Le French Book
first published in French 2004
Source: Overdrive e-Library

Winemaker Detective Mystery (1)

I've read every book in this series save the first, so with the 7th book coming out next week thought I'd take care of this unfinished business. I truly adored meeting all the characters in this introductory novel. Benjamin and Virgil actually meet each other too just as Virgil is hired for the job! They've both come a long way as characters since this one. The mystery was all wine business related and not that excited, I mean there isn't even a murder! but watching Benjamin and Virgil putting their heads together over a puzzle for the first time was extremely fun. I tucked into this book and didn't come up for air until everything was solved and I raised my glass of Pinot Noir in celebration. {cheers}

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Ann Rule, true crime master, dies


Ann Rule, Northwest true crime master, dead at 83 - seattlepi.com

Andreo's Race by Pam Withers

Andreo's Race by Pam Withers
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Paperback, 224 pages
Published April 14th 2015 by Tundra Books
Source: LibraryThing Early Reviewers

A fast-paced action-packed read that had me turning the pages as fast as I could. I enjoyed Withers book "First Descent" but this one is even better. Full of adventure, serious topics such as adoption and baby trafficking are mixed with extreme sports in an adventure race across Bolivia including canoeing, mountain biking, and caving. A former whitewater rafter and outdoor enthusiast, along with being the mother of boys, it's quite apparent the author writes what she knows best and that comes through in her writing which is full of detail and obvious research. The book begins with the two 16yo main characters biking in the Rockies at night and the action, tension and drama never stops for a moment until the exciting climax. Mixed in there is also the story of a family who learns a lesson in how to be closer as a family by showing love and trust with each other plus we see the dark side of baby trafficking from all sides. A riveting read and one of those books that could grab the attention of a reluctant reader who is into extreme sports.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Murder in the Family: The Dr. King Story by Dan Buchanan

Murder in the Family: The Dr. King Story by Dan Buchanan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Paperback, 272 pages
Published July 25th 2015 by Dundurn Group
Source: Netgalley

Dr. William Henry King is the only person to have ever been executed in Northumberland County, Ontario. He came to that fame in 1859 for the murder of his wife by poison. It caused quite the sensation in the little village of Brighton at the time with its tales of mistresses, unborn babes, florid love letters and an attempt to flee. Written by a genealogist, the Brighton town historian and a direct family descendant of Dr. King himself this history of the event and court case is a fascinating read. One gets a feel for the author's love of his material right away and though this is a scholarly volume rather than of a true crime nature, Buchanan's natural storyteller's voice shines through. Filled with direct quotes from source materials and woven together with Buchanan's narrative one gets a feel for the time and place. Dr. King is a selfish man and all throughout his days in prison with his mind turned to confession and salvation by regular visits from clergy, he never once thinks of the life he snuffed out, only of his own. He didn't garner any sympathy from me! The back matter is filled with the original documents. The highlights being Alexander Stewart's (his police companion) daily journal, King's 7000 word "confession" manuscript in which he pleads for all to understand how his weakness for women's wiles and the devil made him do it, plus a newspaper piece from a visit the night before hanging by a journalist who grew up with King as a good friend. There's also a good history of Brighton which will be of most interest to those from the area. The book took me a little bit to get going but once I'd got going I found it easy reading, entertaining and a fascinating case I'd never heard of before.

Winemaker Detective Series (#6) Mayhem in Margaux by Jean-Pierre Alaux & Noël Balen

Mayhem in Margaux by Jean-Pierre Alaux & Noël Balen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Kindle Edition, 164 pages
Published May 14th 2015 by Le French Book
first published in French, 2004
Source: Netgalley

Winemaker Detective Series (#6)

Another fine entry in the Benjamin Cooker series! I'm in love with these characters and this sixth book is a real family affair. I started with book 2 so from that point on, this is the first time that Cooker's wife plays a role throughout the entire book, it's the first time the much mentioned but never seen office manager actually has a scene but the best part is when Virgile and Margaux finally meet. Cooker is always so playful about Virgile's stereotypical French lover playboy lifestyle, that is until he meets his daughter! LOL. Loved how those two got along, Anyway, the mystery was great too and kept me reading. In keeping with the family theme, it all starts with Margaux just barely escaping death in a car accident where the driver is hideously burned! Classic cars, fine wine and French dining all add to an atmosphere of class. One of my favourite series to turn to when I'm looking for something cozy and fun!

Friday, July 24, 2015

Your Worst Nightmare

So I just finished watching "Your Worst Nightmare" (2014) on Netflix; a TV show of only 6 episodes from Investigative Discovery.  Anyway, this is the most intense re-enactment crime show I've seen.  I hadn't heard of any of the cases before and the show was terrific!  Loved it.  If you don't get it on Netflix all the episodes are available on youtube.  Here's a link to its imdb page.