I've been reading lots of good spring and summer releases, but in between, I'm catching up on Allison Leotta's Anna Curtis series.
On the same night federal sex-crimes prosecutor Anna Curtis gets engaged to her very handsome homicide prosecutor boyfriend Jack Bailey, a nearby brothel is raided by both Anna's own investigative team and Diablo - The Devil - a member of D.C.'s most dangerous gang. The results are deadly, and as Anna becomes imbedded in the case, long-buried secrets force a collision between her work and personal lives. I love this series - but it certainly wreaks havoc with my sleep - in the best way.
When the highest paid escort in the city falls to her death from a balcony of the U.S. Capitol, D.C. sex crimes prosecutor Anna Curtis is called to the scene. It's a high profile case, and a good opportunity for Anna to prove herself. But when the city's most powerful politico is under suspicion of murder, she must tread very carefully as she delves into a world of secret men's clubs, secret alliances and old secrets. This is the second book of Leotta's riveting, well-written series, and I love these 'ripped from the headline' mysteries.
Richard Chapman reluctantly expected that there might be a certain level of debauchery at the bachelor party for his brother that he was throwing in his lovely Westchester home, so he sent his wife and young daughter to his mother-in-law's home for the weekend. He didn't expect, however, that the two Russian girls hired to provide 'entertainment' for the gentlemen guests would murder their own bodyguards and flee into the night. And he didn't expect a good man's momentary moral lapse would cause his life to spiral out of control.
Bohjalian is the author of eighteen books - Midwives was a New York Times bestseller - and is a gifted storyteller, which shows in this fast-paced thriller of shame and scandal.
While it's been difficult for the reader to wait a year, the characters from Winter Street are also a year older in this second of Hilderbrand's Christmas trilogy. Isabelle and Kevin's beautiful baby girl was born, Mitzi has been living with Santa Claus George, Patrick has gone to prison for insider trading, and Ava and Scott have been seriously dating. But Kelley and Mitzi's son Bart is still missing in action and consequences from last Christmas - in form of misunderstandings, old loves, and poor choices - arise to complicate this one. And it's going to be a tough wait for the end of this family drama next holiday season...
Five years after her scandalous affair with her former high school boyfriend - and five years after the end of The Life You've Imagined (author Riggle's previous novel) - Anna Geneva has come home for her mother's wedding. Haven is a small town, though, and she's dreading a confrontation with Beck, even though his marriage has now dissolved. Anna is simply hoping to help her mother get married, keep the father who abandoned them from disrupting the wedding, and hightail it back to her home and law practice in Chicago. It's not difficult for the reader to guess that Beck is still attracted to Anna, but this novella clips along at the perfect pace - meaning not needlessly drawn out and with a properly satisfying ending.
This strikes me as the perfect book for today, especially as we finally have snow. It's full of fun craft, cooking, and adventure ideas to add charm and whimsy to one's lifestyle. But while it's easy to do 'cozy' in the fall and winter, author Adrianna Adarme features ideas for every season, including trying a new sport, etching fun cocktail glasses, baking summer pies, starting a good habit, and making s'mores kits. The photos alone make this book worth browsing through on a cozy afternoon.
It was bad enough that Izzy Lane's divorce sent her and her young son back to the home in which she grew up, but running into her ex-husband and his startlingly quickly acquired new girlfriend caused her to make a tiny mistake - she invented a new boyfriend for her blog. What was the harm, after all? Except her best friends are demanding to meet him, her readers want more stories and more details, and Izzy's elderly and beloved next-door neighbor strongly disapproves of her deception. And then the blog goes national and Izzy meets a real live good guy... This novel was November's Saturn Reads Subscription selection and it was thoroughly enjoyable.
Ellen Stimson’s memoirs are very, very funny, but she takes her love of cooking, eating, drinking, and entertaining seriously. Now we can do more than just taste her culinary descriptions in our heads with this charming new Christmas book. Interspersed with gorgeous photography and delightful little holiday-inspired essays are ninety-eight homey recipes straight from her heart and her Vermont home. This is a book of traditions in the best sense, and anyone who loves Christmas – or has become just a little too busy to enjoy the season – will return to the comforts of An Old-Fashioned Christmas year after year.
A flea-breeding nut-job professor, an Animal House fraternity, a couple of Cluck-in-a-Bucket runs, and a molten Porsche means that Stephanie Plum is back on a new case. She's fresh from a breakup with Morelli (with a stress pimple that is practically its own character) and throwing herself into her work to track down her skip - a fraternity president named Gobbles, who may or may not have beaten up the dean trying to shut the brothers down. I still enjoy this series. Stephanie Plum can make even the bubonic plague laugh worthy.
I read cookbooks like novels - usually while I'm eating breakfast or lunch by myself - and this season is especially fun because we have more in stock right now than we do at any other time of year. Phaidon Publishing produces especially beautiful ones including Tacopedia (I mean, TACOS! Who doesn't love them, right?) and Vefa's Kitchen, which is touted as 'The bible of authentic Greek cooking', and Greek is a cuisine I absolutely crave. A few months ago I purchased Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Fast. It's HUGE, and I've been trying something new almost weekly. Mark uses a fresh approach to real food with lots of ideas for tweaking and substituting, and everything has been delicious; my only quibble would be lack of pictures. America's Test Kitchen's new 100 Recipes: The Absolute Best Ways to Make the Essentials might be the next addition to my library for the Mexican-Style Grilled Corn recipe alone. They test and retest so many times that every recipe is a winner, and their photos are mouth-watering. And speaking of mouth-watering pictures - Ree Drummond's The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Dinnertime contains gorgeous photos of not only step-by-step instructions but of...cowboys. Really. Actual cowboys. Yum.The fun of the cookbook section right now is that we have everything - low calorie, comfort food, fast cooking and slow, quick and easy and classic preparation, and every cultural dish you can imagine. And if we don't? We can get it quickly. Just let me know. I can always us a new idea...