Books

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Moving

No, we're not moving, but a house down the street did a couple of days ago.  I mean the entire house, all they left behind was the basement!
It took many days to get it to the point of actually moving it off the foundation. 
This is when they had it on a huge trailer and were moving it out onto the street.  At this point they had already turned it sideways as it was too wide to move it from the front.






 They unhooked it from the truck in the above picture.
 The truck below is the one that will move it to it's new location.  The cab part is parked in front of our house and the end of it is 2 houses down!!

It sat there until midnight when they would start the move.  It would take 2 hours to get to the city limits, which is a distance of 10 km, and then another 4 hours to get to the small town it is going to, which is another 90 km.  We heard the truck start up at midnight, we were in bed so didn't go out and watch.
The next morning all that was left were 3 big oil patches on the road in front of our house, thanks guys, and a big hole where the house was.
That was something we'll probably never see again!!

Friday, August 16, 2019

Books 10-14

Two by Two by Nicholas Sparks
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At thirty-two, Russell Green has it all: a stunning wife, a lovable six-year-old daughter, and a successful career as an advertising executive.  But underneath the shiny surface of this perfect existence, fault lines are beginning to appear...and no one is more surprised than Russ when he finds every aspect of the life he took for granted turned upside down.
In a matter of months, Russ finds himself without a job or wife, caring for his young daughter London while struggling to adapt to a new and baffling reality.  Throwing himself into the wilderness of single parenting, Russ embarks on a journey at once terrifying and rewarding-one that will test his abilities and his emotional resources beyond anything he ever imagined.
When a chance encounter with an old flame tempts him to take a chance on love again, he will navigate this new opportunity with trepidation and wonder.  And in the hard-won lessons of fatherhood, Russ will finally come to understand the true nature of unconditional love-that it is a treasure to be bestowed, never earned.
I did enjoy this book although I found it quite annoying at times.  The wife is a real piece of work and how Russ put up with so much of her behaviour drove me crazy.  It was quite predictable although the ending wasn't quite what I expected.

The Grand Duchess of Nowhere by Laurie Graham
Image result for Laurie graham the grand duchess of nowhere
There is one great love in everyone's life.  For Ducky, Queen Victoria's granddaughter, it was her Romanov cousin.  But forced to marry a German cousin, Ducky seems doomed to be a pawn on a dynastic chessboard.
Yet Ducky is not so easily controlled.  In an era when death is considered preferable to divorce she fights for the freedom to be with her true love. From exile in Paris to the glitter of St. Petersburg and the carnage of the Eastern Front, she forges her own path.
As Russia descends into the chaos of 1917 and the Romanov dynasty falls, Ducky is right at the heart of events.  Exiled once more, she tells us her story.
I enjoyed this book although I did struggle a bit with all the relationships and who was related to who.  The main characters were mainly the Romanovs.  The story covers WW1 and the Russian Revolution but focuses on 'Ducky'. 

Island of Bones by Imogen Robertson
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Cumbria, 1783
The tomb of the Earl of Greta should have lain undisturbed on its island of bones for 300 years.  Inside, however, is one body too many.
A Broken Heritage
Gabriel Crowther's family bought the Gretas' land long ago, and has suffered its own bloody history.  His brother hanged for killing their father, the Baron of Keswick, and Crowther has chosen anonymity over the title for thirty years.  But the mystery calls him home at last.
A Secret History
Travelling with forthright Harriet Westerman, escaping her own tragedy, Crowther finds a town caught between new horrors and old, where ancient ways challenge modern justice.  And against the wild backdrop of fells and water, Crowther's past will not stay buried.
I didn't know that this book was part of a series-book 3 I think.  It probably would have helped the story if I'd read the first two.  This is about a secret that has been buried for 300 years resurfacing. Everything that Crowther thought he knew is thrown into turmoil. It is an interesting read with lots of twists and turns.

Liar's Candle by August Thomas
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Penny Kessler is an intern at the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, Turkey.  She wakes up in a hospital on the morning of July 5th to find herself at the center of an international crisis.  The day before, the Embassy was the target of a devastating terrorist attack that killed hundreds of Penny's friends and colleagues.  Not only has a photograph of Penny emerging from the rubble become the event's defining image, but for reasons she doesn't understand, her bosses believe she's a crucial witness.
Suddenly, everyone is intensely interested in what Penny knows.  As she struggles to piece together her memories, she discovers that Zach Robson, the young diplomat she'd been falling for all summer, went missing during the attack.  And one of the CIA's most powerful officials, Christina Ekdahl, wants people to believe Zach was a traitor.
What actually happened?
Penny barely has time to ask before she learns that her own government wants her dead.  With only a single ally-a rookie intelligence officer fresh out of the Navy-Penny is running a perilous gauntlet, ruthlessly pursued by Turkey's most powerful forces and by the CIA.  This is her first real test-one she can't fail.
This is a very enjoyable spy-type thriller set in modern day Turkey.   It is entertaining and fast paced as long as you are prepared to believe that naive rookies Connor and Penny could have the luck to manage everything that happens in a 24 hour period.  It was quite  fast-paced and exciting story and I was eager to keep reading to find out what would be the outcome.

Family Pictures by Jane Green
Image result for family pictures by jane green
Sylvie and Maggie are two women living on opposite coasts with children about to leave the nest for school.  Both are in their forties with husbands who travel more than either would like.  The looming emptiness of their respective homes has left them feeling anxious and lonely, needing their husbands to be home now more than ever.  It isn't until Eve, Sylvie's daughter, happens to befriend Maggie's daughter that the similarities between these two women become shockingly real.  A huge secret has remained well hidden for years until now, and their lives will be blown apart as dark truths from the past come to the surface.  Can these two women learn to forgive for the sake of their children?  For themselves.
I think most readers would have figured out what was happening very early on but it took quite a while for the 'secret' to be revealed.  Without giving away the story I'll just say it was interesting how each woman dealt with the 'secret'.  Not a bad summer read.

Saturday, August 3, 2019

Animals and flowers


Just a few pictures of some of the animals on display in a sporting goods store in one of our malls.







More flowers in the garden.





My blueberries were coming along nicely. There were a few ripe ones ready to pick but I thought I would leave them until the next day.  Went out the next morning and all the ripe ones were gone.  I think a rabbit came to visit.  The next morning all the small green ones were gone.  I don't think he'll be back because he didn't leave any for another day!!

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Books 5-9


Without Fear or Favor by Robert K, Tanenbaum 
Image result for without fear or favor by robert k. tanenbaum
When a New York City police officer shoots a seemingly unarmed teenager, tensions between the police force and Harlem black rights activists ignite.  The community, believing that the teen had no weapon is outraged and demands that the officer be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.  But this is no ordinary call for justice-someone is conspiring to bring down the city's entire police force in cold blood.  Only District Attorney Roger "Butch" Karp, his crime-fighting wife, Marlene, and his band of truth-seekers can unravel the mystery without fear or favor-and find out the unthinkable truth.
It took me a while to get into this book but I did enjoy it.

Now You See Her by Joy Fielding
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When Marcy Taggart goes to Ireland after divorcing her husband of twenty-five years, a chance encounter catapults her life into turmoil.  Years earlier, her daughter, Devon, disappeared in the icy waters of Georgian Bay after a canoeing accident, her body never recovered.  But on a day trip to Cork, Marcy is certain she spots Devon walking down the street.  When her daughter disappears into a crowd, Marcy begins a desperate search to find her-and to uncover the disturbing truth that might, in the end, be her only salvation.
The main character, Marcy, for a 50 year old woman comes across as immature, gullible, very unrelateable and therefore it was hard to sympathize with her plight. She seemed to be blinded by her desperate need to find her daughter and some of the decisions she made were extremely dangerous.   It made you wonder if she was of sound mind and could probably benefit from counselling!

I've Got My Eye on You by Mary Higgins Clark
Image result for i've got my eyes on you by mary higgins clark
When 18 year old Kerry Dowling is found dead at the bottom of the family pool, her devastated family faces the horrifying realization that Kerry might have been murdered by someone she loved.
The obvious first suspect is Kerry's boyfriend, with whom she'd had a bitter argument at a party she threw while her parents were away.  But suspicion falls upon the Dowlings' neighbour, an intellectually disabled young man named Jamie.  Was a lack of invitation to the party enough to set him off-and is the pile of wet clothing his mother found in his room a sign of something sinister?
A guidance counselor at the local high school, Kerry's grieving older sister, Aline, is bent on unveiling the truth.  Working closely with the detective assigned to the case, she turns up helpful clues.  But the more Aline digs, the more she's putting her own life in grave danger.
Well, this was an easy read but I think MHC is losing her touch.  It was so predictable and really didn't have much suspense.  It was so easy to figure out who the 'bad guy' was very early on in the book.  

The Stars Below by David Baldacci

 Image result for the stars below by david baldacci
From the beginning, the fight was coming.  Vega Jane fought her way out of the village where she was born, crossed a wilderness filled with vicious creatures., and raised a ragtag army behind her.  But each triumph earned through grit and pain only brought her closer to him.
Necro.  A sorcerer whose unspeakable evil is matched only by his magical power. 
Vega and Necro are on a collision course  The clash between his awesome power and her iron will is going to shake the stars down.  Their fight will seal their fates....and determine the future of the world.
The battle rages in the furious conclusion to the Vega Jane series.
I really enjoyed this final book in the series, but you have to be a fan of fantasy fiction. I'm kind of disappointed that this is the last book in the series. My only complaint would be that there was such a long time between books three and four being published so you really had to rattle the memory banks to remember who some of the characters were.

Winter's Daughter by Kathleen Creighton
Image result for Winter's Daughter by Kathleen Creighton
Nothing stirred Tannis Winter like the plight of the homeless, and she'd devoted herself to aiding the street people she'd chosen for her research. But when a mysterious-looking derelict began following her in her bag-lady disguise, she felt a moment of terror--then knocked him to the ground and got him arrested! How was she to know he was the new town councilman, working undercover to expose the city's failure to help the poor? Dillon James was bewitched by her courage and her compassion, but it was the summer in her skin and the fire in her eyes that made him want to ignite a hidden passion in the enchanting crusader. Tannis felt the hunger of need erupt inside, but could she trust this darkly handsome man with a heart once betrayed? Dillon stalked her with fierce desire and a yearning to be cherished, but the pain of his past echoed her own. Could he make her see that once they'd touched, he'd be part of her life forever?
Well, if I'd read the above before I read the book I probably wouldn't have read it.  You don't get any blurb about the book when you read it on your phone.  It makes it sound like a Harlequin Romance, which is not my bag! I got the blurb from 'Goodreads'.  Parts of it were okay but the rest fit more into the Harlequin Romance realm.  It was okay for sitting waiting at appointments!!

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Beginning of Summer

With a combination of these two I think things are growing!!

The hanging baskets are doing well.






Beautiful Martha Washington geraniums and lobelia in my very special little animal pots.


Lots and lots of petunias.

I planted 3 alium bulbs over 30 years ago.  Now they are all over the garden.  I think the birds or squirrels must move them around.  I probably have over 50 blooms this year.


The hostas are doing really well.

 The peonies are well over 5 feet tall and have over 100 buds.
 Lots of daisies. Often too many and I have to pull them out as they self seed all over the place, even in the lawn.

 The pansies are growing among the roses.

 A couple of my solar lights.


 And then I had to move the hanging baskets and M.W. geraniums under cover last night as big storms were threatening.  They're moved back out this morning to get watered as we are to have rain the rest of the week.


Bye for now!