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Showing posts from July, 2012

"Tigers in Red Weather" by Liza Klaussmann.

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Tigers in Red Weather:  A beach read that, if you finish it,  you can leave behind at the cottage.
Author Liza Klaussmann mines mid-20th century Martha's Vineyard society in Tigers in Red Weather, which follows the lives of two young women, Nick and her cousin Helena.  When the book begins, World War II is ending.  Nick is off to Florida to meet her husband, Hugh, who is returning from overseas service.  Helena's husband died in the war.  She is going to Los Angeles to get remarried.

Separated by geography and financial wherewithal (Nick and Hugh have money, Helena and her husband do not), the cousins stay connected in part because of the family home, Tiger House, in Martha's Vineyard.  The remainder of the novel, which takes place from the late 1940s to the end of the 1960s, concerns the women's marriages, children, money or the lack thereof, tennis, parties, bad behavior and a murder.  For me, all these plot ideas didn't add up to very much and, measured on a sc…

New Book by Martin Walker: "The Crowded Grave."

Martin Walker has written a series of books set in the Dordogne region of France and featuring Police Chief Bruno Courreges.  These are such enjoyable books, which is why I was very pleased to see in Marilyn Stasio's NYT column that a new Bruno book is available.  It's called The Crowded Grave.  Check out Ms. Stasio's column here.  And if you enjoy reading mysteries, try Martin Walker's books.


More from author Martin Walker:

The Dark Vineyard

Black Diamond

Music We Like: "Radio Music Society" by Esperanza Spalding.

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Although being knee-deep in summer activities is shortening time for reading, I am making time to listen over and over to Esperanza Spalding's terrific jazz album, Radio Music Society.  Spalding is a bassist, composer, vocalist, and the winner of the 2011 Grammy for Best New Artist, the first time a jazz artist received this award.  Radio Music Society is her latest disc, a collection of accessible, contemporary pop.  Since it's hot outside, why not pour yourself a gin and tonic, cue up Radio Music Society, and cool down with Ms. Spalding's breezy, jazzy stylings.





Chill Out With a Great Read: "Ice Cap: A Mystery" by Chris Knopf.

Here is a perfect book to read while lounging around at home or at the beach:  Ice Cap, a mystery by Chris Knopf.  Why is it perfect? Because Chris Knopf writes terrific mysteries, with snappy dialogue, interesting characters, and entertaining plots with just the right touch of suspense.

In Ice Cap it is winter in the Hamptons and the locals are getting hit hard with record-breaking snowfall.  In the middle of a snowy blast, criminal defense attorney Jackie Swaitkowski gets a call from one of her clients. The client is Franklin (Franco) Delano Raffini, a former investment banker who'd served time for killing his girlfriend's husband with a rotisserie skewer before the husband could kill Franco with a steak knife.

Franco has found his boss, Tad Buczek - who also happens to be Jackie's late husband's uncle - dead in the snow on Buczek's large estate.   If you are thinking 'heart attack in the snow', you're wrong:  When Jackie gets to the estate she sees…

Author of "Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk" Interviewed on NPR

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Right now I'm reading Ben Fountain's novel Billy Lynn.  Fountain was recently interviewed on NPR; here is the link to the story.  At the link there is also a brief excerpt from the book.