Sunday, 26 October 2008

Seven Sisters (Benni Harper Mysteries) by Earlene Fowler

Not my most favorite of the series, but nonetheless enjoyable.

Benni's stepson announces that his girlfriend is pregnant and that they plan to marry. The girlfriend is none other than one of his father's fellow police the party planned for their engagement one of the future relatives is found shot dead. Benni does resist in getting caught up with this mystery of who did it, but is back in the centre of it all, due to the police officer investigating the case. The new police officer had an appauling amount of people skills and I found him to be very irritating. Due to an impending wedding, Gabe finds that he is spending time with his ex wife, and I found that Benni was very controlled over this and I just wanted her to be more challenging with her hubby! What unfolds is a very sad and tragic story....

Thursday, 23 October 2008

The Quilter's Kitchen by Jennifer Chiaverini

The latest book in the Elm Creek series is a small one, not just on size but also content, with just 214 pages which also includes the recipe index. The story is essentially focused on two of the Elm Creek Quilters, the new cook Anna and Sylvia sorting through the historic kitchen ready for a refit. What they find along the way sends Sylvia back to her memories some of which are shared within the confines of the book. Each chapter is given to a family feast and then concludes with a series of recipes before moving to the next chapter.

The recipes are a nice touch to the book, and although I enjoyed the book, there were either too many recipes or not enough story, and I found that I was left wanting to know more.

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Christmas Cake

It is that time again, when we plan to make the Christmas Cake & Puddings. Each year Mum asks what size I am planning to make etc. We usually make then together and have a girly chat.

Mum has used the following recipe since the early 1980s, actually my Grandmother spotted it in a copy of Woman Magazine, and since then we have used this one, albeit, the copy does look in rather a sorry state! The actual date is gleened from a book review on the reverse of the recipe - 1983!

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Tainted Tree by Jacquelynn Luben

I came across this book purely by chance and am so glad that I did. I was looking on Google to see what books were set in Guildford and noticed that this one was and available from a local publisher. It appealed to my genealogical mind, so I ordered it and it arrived on Monday just in time for a business trip. I devoured the book during my 6 hours traveling yesterday.

Addie inherits a lovely house in Guildford from someone she does not know,but she understand that the deceased has links were her mother, who died in childbirth with Addie, In America. The people that Addie's mother was living with write to advise the would be grandparents of the death of their daughter to find that they do not want to accept responsibility for the child,and after a period of time, Addie is adopted by the couple. Addie has a happy and loved childhood, but finds that she has questions of her heritage and wants to "know" her deceased Mother, and she has no idea who her father is.....Inheriting the house is a catalyst for discovering the answers.

The link is the Addie's mother was god daughter to James, and it is his house that she has inherited. Addie sets out on a journey of discovery, and as with most genealogical type searches Addie soon finds that she has more questions than answers, and that she has to live with the decisions that her ancestors made.

The author has done obvious research into genealogical searches and mentions the huge references of birth,marriage and death records at St Catherine's House, of course they are not longer available in the serch room by that has occured since the book was published earlier in the year, and the reference to it in the book reminded me of days lifting those heavy books and battling for space with other researchers. Also the use of the surname of Daborn a very Surrey name!

Addie does meet living relatives, including her great grandmother, who she discovers was illegitimate and has spent the majority of her life in a hospital simply for having a child out of wedlock. There are tears of joy as the elderly lady realises that the young woman standing with her is not simply a stranger from the social but a relative, a descendant of the daughter she had been told had died. I could almost feel Ada's pain and anguish.

The genealogical search is just like a jigsaw, gathering the facts and placing what you know into the mix to build the picture, and that was done as we read of Addie's search.

Quite simply I loved this book, not just for the subject matter, but the way the story unfolds and evolves. I was there, within the pages.

Available from the publisher's website

Signed by the author.

Click to view large image of cover in new window...

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Tuesday Night at the Kasbah by Patricia Kitchin

There was something rather fun about this book. A group of women, all yearning in someways for something they haven't got, meet at a belly dancing class. The group forge friendships at varying levels as they struggle with their own personal crisis, which seems to involve the men in their lives......


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