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.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Monday: Books in the Mail

Busy mailbox for me last week. Review books, a bookmooch and an online purchase. Here's what books arrived at my house:

From Hatchette Book Group:

Two abandoned souls are on the hunt for one powerful man. Soon, their paths will cross and lead to one twisted fate.

Danny Hansen is a Bosnian immigrant who came to America with hopes of escaping haunted memories of a tragic war that took his mother's life. Now he's a priest who lives by a law of love and compassion. It is powerful men and hypocrites who abide by legal law but eschew the law of love that most incense Danny. As an avenging angel, he believes it is his duty to show them the error of their ways, at any cost.

Renee Gilmore is the frail and helpless victim of one such powerful man. Having escaped his clutches, she now lives only to satisfy justice by destroying him, regardless of whom she must become in that pursuit.

But when Danny and Renee's paths become inexorably entangled things go very, very badly and neither of them may make it out of this hunt alive.

Judge not, or you too will be judged.

From Capstone Press:

A violent storm strikes the Gulf of Mexico, damaging a drilling rig off the Louisiana coast. Only one man can stop millions of barrels of oil from spilling into the ocean . . . Aquaman, the King of the Sea! Without delay, the super hero and his underwater friends surge toward the disaster. Suddenly, out of a black plume of oil, an even greater darkness emerges. The evil Black Manta is siphoning oil into his submarine. The Sea King can't believe the villain could sink to such terrible depths! Before the gulf is destroyed, Aquaman must convince his enemy that a threat to the sea is a threat to them both.

From the book's publicist (for a book tour):

Remember when you were a child—when all the world was new, and the smallest object a thing of wonder? Arleta Richardson remembers: the funny wearable wire contraption hidden in the dusty attic, the century-old schoolchild's slate that belonged to Grandma, an ancient trunk filled with quilt pieces—each with its own special story—and the button basket, a miracle of mysteries. And best of all was the remarkable grandmother who made magic of all she touched, bringing the past alive as only a born storyteller could.

Here are those marvelous tales—faithfully recalled for the delight of young and old alike, a touchstone to another day when life was simpler, perhaps richer; when the treasures of family life and love were passed from generation to generation by a child's questions...and the legends that followed enlarged our faith

If you are young enough to love a story—and just about everyone is—here are more stories from Grandma's attic. Magical pieces of a day gone by . . . told by that natural storyteller of all loving families—Grandma, the one who never forgets the fun and laughter of a simpler, perhaps richer time.

Stories of an old rag doll that seems to come alive . . . of a newborn goat dancing stiff-legged in the old farm kitchen . . . and of a faith that gives life meaning.

From Globe Pequot Press:

When do you watch a wild animal suffer and let nature take its course, and when do you intervene? In his more than twenty-five years as an African vet, Dr. Roy Aronson has seen and done some remarkable things. He has tracked lions and cheetahs, anesthetized rhinoceroses and king cobras, collared rogue elephants, performed eye surgery on a lion out in the bush, been attacked by a puff adder, come face to face with an angry hybrid wolf, and nearly lost a foot to a crocodile. Dr. Aronson has also worked with some of Africa’s most dedicated conservationists and wildlife veterinarians. He has witnessed their passion and bravery and been with them when hard decisions had to be made.

Tales of an African Vet brings together Dr. Aronson’s adventures in a rare behind-the-scenes look at those who treat wild animals in their natural habitat. For those drawn to outdoor adventure stories, African wildlife, or the veterinarian’s trade, it is a riveting book replete with rich insights into both the animal and human cultures of Africa.

From Penguin Group (Canada):

'And so, in a trice, he came into the garden that has haunted all his life'. H.G. Wells was a pioneer of science fiction, its first and greatest influence. Here his boundless invention creates three very stories: a poignant parable of a mysterious door, a thrilling account of be-tentacled sea creatures and the darkly comic chronicle of an academic rivalry taken too far ...This book includes "The Door in the Wall", "The Sea Raiders" and "The Moth".

From Bookmooch:

In 1903 a mysterious young woman flees alone across the West, one heart-pounding step ahead of the law. At nineteen, Mary Boulton has just become a widow—and her husband's killer. As bloodhounds track her frantic race toward the mountains, she is tormented by mad visions and by the knowledge that her two ruthless brothers-in-law are in pursuit, determined to avenge their younger brother's death. Responding to little more than the primitive fight for life, the widow retreats ever deeper into the wilderness—and into the wilds of her own mind—encountering an unforgettable cast of eccentrics along the way.

Purchased from an online retailer:

You don’t have to become a biblical scholar or a theologian to be an effective spokesman for the Catholic Faith. In fact, even though you don’t know all the answers and can’t explain every aspect of the Faith, you can begin winning souls to the Church right now . . . using prayer, friendship, and common sense.
It sounds almost too good to be true, but in Search and Rescue Patrick Madrid explains why these are among the most effective, time-tested methods for bringing family and friends into — or back into — the Church. As the publisher of Envoy magazine, author of many apologetics books (including Surprised by Truth 2), and a veteran defender of the Faith, Madrid himself has used these methods successfully for years.

But Madrid doesn’t give you only the benefit of his own considerable experience: in Search and Rescue he also includes simple and genial advice from St. Francis of Assisi, St. Augustine, and other great lovers of God. Get Search and Rescue — the book that shows you how you can start winning souls for Christ today!

The Acts of the Apostles -- for children Marigold Hunt, author of A Life of Our Lord for Children, here continues the tale of Jesus and His Church by retelling for children the events reported in The Acts of the Apostles, St. Luke s account of the dangerous early days of the Church. Focusing on the deeds and experiences of Sts. Peter, Paul, Luke, and Barnabas, author Hunt shows children that the Catholic Church which today seems so ancient and established was born in turbulent times, when merely professing belief in Christ could get you killed -- and not by rowdies and brigands, but by public officials carrying out their sworn duty. Time and again, the apostles wind up in jail (some for years), and time and again God frees them by miracles of one sort or another. With Christian hope and great good cheer, they take up again the task with which Christ charged them just before He ascended into Heaven: Go forth and teach all nations. By foot, on horseback, and on frail craft tossed in stormy seas, they do just that, preaching and teaching their way across much of the known world, winning converts and establishing churches in Palestine, Crete, Cyprus, Malta, Phoenicia, the lands that are now Turkey, and even in Rome itself, the pagan capital of the anti-Christian Empire. Along the way, the apostles heal the sick, cast out devils, and work other miracles. They face down mobs, evade murder plots, and defend themselves in courts in city after city. In the midst of it all, Peter -- whose authority as the first Pope was accepted by all of the apostles - settles disputes that arise among the Christians and between the new Churches. All this and more is told in The First Christians, the thrilling -- and true -- saga of the lives and works of the first apostles of Jesus.

For your children:
An old-fashioned “Retreat-in-a-Book” . . . to help them ponder the truths of the Faith and live lives of holiness in accordance with those truths

Based on the traditional St. Ignatius retreat (trusted by Catholics for centuries) and adapted for children, this clear, simple, thoughtful presentation of the Faith is invaluable for parents seeking to form their children in holiness.

My Path to Heaven covers such essentials of the Faith as God’s will, angels, Heaven and Hell, the Fall of man, the Holy Trinity, the Incarnation, the Nativity, the Passion, salvation, the sacraments, faith, hope, love, and contrition, and it teaches children the relevance of these truths in their lives and in the decisions they make.


  1. I want to read that Ted Dekker book. It looks very interesting. I also like the look of THE OUTLANDER. Enjoy your books, Nicola!

  2. I am curious to see what you think of The Outlander. It sounds like a good read.

  3. Interesting mix of books here. It always adds variety when you read mixed genres doesn't it?

  4. Wow, what a busy week for you. Enjoy your new books. Have a great week and happy reading. My MM is here .

  5. I think Tales of an African Vet sounds really good. Enjoy all your new books!