Woodstock's Blog
Books and other stuff I feel like discussing

By education and experience - Accountant with a specialty in taxation. Formerly a CPA (license has lapsed). Masters degree in law of taxation from University of Denver. Now retired. Part time work during baseball season as receptionist & switchboard operator for the Colorado Rockies. This gig feeds my soul in ways I have trouble articulating. One daughter, and four grandchildren. I share the house with two cats; a big goof of a cat called Grinch (named as a joke for his easy going "whatever" disposition); and Lady, a shelter adoptee with a regal bearing and sweet little soprano voice. I would be very bereft if it ever becomes necessary to keep house without a cat.
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Books update

I've got a list of books to share, and this will be my third try to get the entry up on the blog. I'm not sure what the problem has been, but this time I'm revising and editing off line, and will try to get the entry posted in one quick process. We'll see!

I work four days a week for a good friend who has her own CPA firm specializing in taxation. Her office is now less than three miles from the house, so no more bus commutes. This is good news, of course, considering the time saving of working that close. But my time to read has taken a hit. Nevertheless, my log has quite a few titles worth sharing with everyone.

THE KILLING MOON by Chuck Hogan - a small New England town which has hit bottom economically is threatened by the illegal aspirations of the personnel in law enforcement. An enigmatic return to the town by a former resident disturbs an uneasy balance. I like Hogan's books quite a bit.

WALKIN' THE DOG by Walter Mosley - for a book discussion evening. One of my groups picks a black American author every February. The discussion was successful, most group members found the issues raised about the divide between black and white Americans to be intriguing. It was my second time through the book, the first on audio, and for me at any rate, it didn't stand up to a re-read. Mosley originally published this work in serial fashion and later summarized the chapters in book form. Listening on audio on a long trip in the car inevitably means interruptions, and the more or less independent chapters were very enjoyable. The disconnection was more obvious when reading in the conventional manner. BUT I would still recommend almost everything Mosley has written - he is solidly positioned on my "don't miss" list.

ONCE IN A PROMISED LAND by Laila Halaby - five years and some months past 9/11, the events and their aftermath are beginning to appear in literature. This is a very thoughtful, excellent read. A married couple, immigrants from Jordan and living an upscale life in Arizona, each endure personal tragedy yet hesitate to share the whole truth of the events with each other. As the full import of the tragedy in New York and Virginia begins to sink in for casual acquaintances and co-workers, the lives of the two Jordanians begin to unravel. Halaby is herself an American of Middle Eastern background.

THE FALL by Ron Franscell - True crime about a rape and murder in a small Wyoming town in the 60's. Author is a journalist who as a teenager was a neighbor of the two women who were assaulted.

THE SHAPE SHIFTER by Tony Hillerman - Other readers have mentioned that this isn't Hillerman's best, but he still tells an intriguing story. Joe Leaphorn has center stage, trying to adjust to retirement, and not having an easy time of it.

FEVER MOON by Carolyn Haines - The author of a popular series of cozies moves on to darker themes. A cop, formerly a WWII infantryman, battles superstition in a small Louisiana community in the late 40's and struggles with his own demons as well.

THE GHOST MAP by Steven Johnson - highly readable relating of a cholera outbreak in 1850's London and the efforts of the community to discover and isolate the cause. The author presents the case that this case was the beginning of widespread policies in protection in public health.

DIARY OF A PROVINCIAL LADY by E M Delafield - another book discussion group choice. Light and satiric, and like the best comedy, has a sharper more serious edge at times.

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