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 nonfiction. 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.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Five Chimneys: The Story of Auschwitz by Olga Lengyel

Five Chimneys: The Story of AuschwitzFive Chimneys: The Story of Auschwitz by Olga Lengyel
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What makes this book so interesting for the modern reader is that it was written in 1959. The events were still so fresh and raw in the author's mind that it is a still current event which places the reader so close to the time as opposed to a modern book that looks back in history. A very straightforward telling of concentration camp life from a survivor who holds nothing back. It's awkward to call a book like this "good" since the material is so horrible. However, it is a chilling and stomach-churning must read.

Labyrinth by Yoshinori Shimizu

LabyrinthLabyrinth by Yoshinori Shimizu
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A perplexing tale that kept me riveted throughout. Any synopses would fail to completely describe this philosophical novel starting with an anonymous narrator with amnesia. The narrator (and we) are presented with a series of letters, news articles, interviews and police files which all relate in some way to a recent grisly murder of a woman killed by her stalker. I really enjoyed this!

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Current ARC List for 2017

This is my updated ARC list for 2017. I did fantastic last year in keeping up with all incoming arcs. I accomplished my goals and feel like I'm on top of things and have a decent sized list now. This year I'm going to keep up to date on my incoming 2017 arcs, finish off the few left over from 2016 and get down to work finishing off the 2013 backlist.

1. Buried Prey by John Sandford
2. The S-Word by Chelsea Pitcher
3. Far Far Away by Tom MacNeal
4. Vortex by S.J. Kincaid
5. The Color of Rain by Cori McCarthy
6. The Tilted World by Tom Franklin &
7. These Fragile Things by Jane Davis
8. Someone Else's Love Story by Joshilyn Jackson
9. Songs of the Willow Frost by Jamie Ford
10. The Magical Fruit by Jo Nesbo
11. The Tree of Story by Thomas Wharton
12. The All-Girl Filling Station's Last Reunion by Fannie Flagg
13. Wise Acres by Dale E. Basye

14. Red Rising by Pierce Brown
15. Benjamin West and His Cat Grimalkin by Marguerite Henry
16. The Belief in Angels by J. Dylan Yates
17. Middle School: Ultimate Showdown by James Patterson
18. Battle Royale by Koushun Takami 
19. Kiss Me First by Lottie Moggach
20. The Confabulist by Steven Galloway
21. Noggin by John Corey Whaley
22. Middle School: Save Rafe! by James Patterson & Chris Tebbetts
23. 2 A.M. at the Cat's Pajama's by Marie-Helene Bertino
24. The Sandman by Lars Kepler
25. The Broken Hours by Jacqueline Baker
26. The Map to Everywhere by Carrie Ryan and John Parke Davis
27. The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black
28. A.D. 30 by Ted Dekker
29. The Job by Janet Evanovich & Lee Goldberg
30. Motherless by Erin Healy
31. The Strange Library by Haruki Murakami
32. Avatar: The Last Airbender - The Rift Part 1 by Gene Luen Yang


33. Miles Taylor and the Golden Cape: Attack of the Alien Horde by Robert Venditti
34. Shattered Glass by Teresa Toten


35. Barracuda by Sigmund Brouwer
36. Only the Hunted Run by Neely Tucker
37. Curious Minds by Janet Evanovich & Phoef Sutton
38. I See You by Clare Mackintosh
39. Hag-Seed by Margaret Atwood
40. Games of Make-Believe by Julie Ann Wambach

TV/Movies watched in 2017

This is a running list for the year. The list will include the movie and indicate whether it is a re-watch otherwise, it can be assumed it was my first time watched. I mainly watch TV series though and am addicted to Season binging.

Title (the year)(rewatch?)(stars)(5/5)

No rules here just a list with a bit of extra information. I will also probably note who I watched it with.


1. The FBI Files Season 1 (1998) - Discovery crime documentary - I've seen lots of random episodes but never the whole thing before. (4/5)

2. Pete Burns: The Last Interview (2016) - A one-hour UK TV documentary by BBC or similar. (4/5)

3. Inspector Morse Series 5 (1991) - 5 one-hour episodes - UK crime drama by ITV - I've seen every episode of this mostly more than once but never all in order before. (4/5)

4. Hoarders Season 2 (2009) - Reality show by A&E. (4/5)

5. Criminal Minds Season 6 (2010) - A really annoying season seeing two cast members go and a new one added. I hate this new girl! She has no character and looks so much like JJ it's hard to tell them apart. Season finale brings some hope for the next season. The individual cases are just as good as ever. By CBS. (3/5)

6. Wallander Series 4 (2016) - Final season of this BBC scandi-crime show starring Kenneth Branagh. Very moody and gloomy with a bittersweet ending. (4/5)

7. Most Evil Season 2 (2007) - Investigation Discovery's crime documentary featuring mostly serial killers. (5/5)

8. The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner (1962) An old b/w British movie based on the story of the same name by Alan Sillitoe which I read last year. Really fun to see actor John Thaw (Inspector Morse) as a young thug! (4/5)

9. Sopranos Season 6 (2006) - The final season of this HBO series is amazing! One of the best TV shows ever made. (5/5)

10. Inspector Morse Series 6 (1992) - UK crime drama by ITV -Classic series continues par excellence. I'm re-watching this in order. (5/5)

11. Avatar: The Last Airbender Season 1 (2003) - Nickelodeon animated series - I've ever only seen a few random episodes of this but always enjoyed it. I'm really enjoying this. (4/5)

12. Sherlock Series 4 (2017) - BBC crime drama - Totally jumped the shark! Very disappointed. (2/5)


Monday, October 31, 2016

My Latest Reviews

Read my latest reviews on Goodreads while I take a break from blogging!

Last Five Books

The Strand Magazine June-Sept. 2013
3 of 5 stars
I enjoy this magazine and while this volume mainly contained unimpressive stories I still took pleasure in my time with it. I Love the book ads and book reviews just as much and maybe in this issue's case, more. Not the best collection o...
Naruto (3-in-1 Edition), Vol. 3: Includes vols. 7, 8 & 9
4 of 5 stars
Vol.7 - Encompasses the second exam and ends with a bit of a cliffhanger so we don't know if they've completed it yet. Kitts of battles with the same groups we've met before. There are some viscious bad guys out there. And they are all p...
Classic Goosebumps #22: Stay Out of the Basement
4 of 5 stars
The second Goosebumps book and the second one I've read. (though this is the one and only GB book I had previously read years ago). All was fresh to me as I didn't remember the story at all. I found this particularly well written having ...
Tweedles Go Electric
5 of 5 stars
I love Monica Kulling's historical and biographical picture books so it is with no surprise that I found The Tweedles adorable. Usually Kulling relates a true story but this time we have an historical fiction piece centred around the ele...
Savage Harvest: A Tale of Cannibals, Colonialism, and Michael Rockefeller's Tragic Quest for Primitive Art
5 of 5 stars
When I think of Imperialism, Colonialism and empire building, the last country that would have come to mind is The Netherlands. But they did indeed have colonies such as Dutch Guiana, Gold Coast, Mozambique, South Africa, and many others...


Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Pruwahaha Monster by Jean-Paul Mulders

The Pruwahaha Monster by Jean-Paul Mulders
Illus by Jacques Maes & Lise Braekers
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Hardcover, 26 pages
Published October 4th 2016 by Kids Can Press
Source: egalley via netgalley

I thought this story was charming. About a monster who smells a child and hunts him but when he tries to scare him the child only laughs. While the story is delightful, the real joy of this book comes from the illustrations which are done in a pastel turquoise and peach. The pages are a graphic design dream. The main characters are not often the focus of the illustration but rather the backgrounds are detailed referring to items mentioned in the text. Often illustrations run off the page or are asymmetrical. The eye keeps moving and they enhance the text wonderfully. Delightful!

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady's Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners by Therese Oneill

Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady's Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners by Therese Oneill
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Hardcover, 320 pages
Published October 25th 2016 by Little, Brown and Company
Source: Received a print copy to review from the publisher

Well-researched and full of nifty little bits of information on what Victorian life was really like for women. The author takes us back to mid-century 1800s and switches between US and England telling us what our life as a wealthy woman would be like going into detail about the naughty bits, the toilette, the marriage bed, disease, etc. She also takes us downstairs as we learn to deal with servants, housekeeping and cooking. The book is easy-breezy to read and the author takes a laissez-faire attitude pushing jokes and puns throughout. As a voracious reader of Victoriana mostly interested in the downstairs and back alleys, I didn't find much I didn't already know but it was fun having a book devoted to the topics. The only thing that annoyed me was the author's poking fun at everything. It started off cute but just got more and more irritating as the book went on, until I got to a point where I just wished she'd stop. It would have been wiser, and easier on the reader, if she had opened each chapter with the teasing and sarcasm and then got down to the business at hand of imparting her knowledge.