August Reading

Another month is just about over.  It started off slowly, reading-wide, but ended up pretty good.

I read one non-fiction book, Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan, Vol. 2 by Lafcadio Hearn.  I had started it some time ago but just wasn’t motivated to finish it.  It didn’t seem as applicable to the novel my son and I are writing as the first volume had been, and I had trouble making myself finish reading it.  It was, actually, quite good, though.  Hearn lived in Japan a long, long time ago and lived more as a Japanese than as an American.  He experienced the culture probably as completely as anyone could.  I admire him for that.

I finished five novels this month:

  • Found Innocent by Carolyn Arnold  was the fourth book in the series.  I haven’t read any others, but I probably will.  This was a good book — but there were times I wasn’t fond of the main character.  She wasn’t always very easy to relate to.  And her partner was a little odd.  But the story was interesting.
  • 15 Minutes: A Time Travel Suspense Thriller by Jill Cooper was a fascinating story.  The hero uses her 15 minutes in the past to save her mother, but it only makes her life worse.  There were a lot of interesting twists and turns, although I wasn’t impressed with the real bad guy.  He seemed more like a jerlk than anything else.  It was a good read, though, so you should check it out.
  • Unleashed by Emily Kimelman started off completely unbelievable but got better. There were still some parts that were a little jarring because of how unrealistic they were, but overall I liked the book a lot.  I have a couple more books in this series that I will get around to reading before long, and I am anticipating that they will be pretty good.  This was book one and pretty much the back story.  I think I will like the character better as Sydney Rye than I did as Joy.
  • OMEGA Exile by Stephen Arseneault was the first real science fiction book I have read in a while.  I decided it was time since I was going to a science fiction convention over this past weekend.  I couldn’t really tell you how or why I picked this one to read, but I am very glad I did.  It was easily the best book I read this month.  It was well written and had really likable characters.  The story was excellent.  I have not read anything else by this author, but I plan to.
  • Crushed by Barbara Ellen Brink is the second in a series of winery mysteries but the first one of them I have read.  It was a good story — a quick, easy read.  I enjoyed it a lot.  The romances are a little predictable, but there is enough action and suspense that you don’t get bogged down in that part of it.   I plan to read more in the series.

I read three pieces of short fiction:

  • Justice Calling by Annie Bellet is a good book if you like stories about gamers and sorcerers and shape shifters.  I enjoyed it a lot.  It was an easy read.  It is the first in the series, and I will likely read more of them.  The characters are fun.
  • “Solstice Day Gifts” by Lindsay Buroker is an Emperor’s Edge short story.  I love these characters, and my only real complaint was that the story was too short.  I know; I should read a novel if I want a longer story.  And I will.  But this was fun, and I am glad I read it.
  • Sleep Walking Now and Then by Richard Bowes is a novelette from  It wasn’t really my kind of story, but I enjoyed it.  It is a story about a theatrical production that is based on some mysterious goings-on in the hotel where it is staged.  Try it.  You might like it.

The only audiobook I finished this month was Countdown by Kurt Becker, SJ.  The book has a lot of religion, as you might expect from a book written by a Jesuit, but it embraced science and space exploration, something that surprised me a bit.  The book was written in 1958, and it is totally believable if you can put yourself back in that time.  (I can because I was 8 then.)  It takes place in the Panhandle of Texas, near where I lived for three years in eastern New Mexico and through which I have traveled countless times.  It seemed familiar to me, and I enjoyed it.  It probably isn’t for everyone, though.  I got the audiobook from

So I am ready to start my September reading.  I will start it today, actually.  Let’s see how it goes.

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