Welcome to the MOSL Book Challenge

Saturday, April 30, 2016

"Shotgun" by Marie Sexton

This is book #7 in the Coda Series, and I really liked it for several reasons.  The story itself is an unrequited love story between two men who first meet when they are seventeen and are only together for a few hours.  Fifteen years later, they meet again in the same town, Coda, CO, where Dominic Jacobsen has lived his whole life, and where Lamar Franklin has just moved.  When Lamar's car is vandalized, the garage that Dominic's family owns ends up fixing it.  Lamar is out, and he's just moved to Coda to take a teaching job and to get away from the married man with whom he was having an affair.  He's also depressed.  Dominic lives with his 13-year-old daughter, Naomi, and is still in the closet.  He believes that having a gay father will hurt Naomi, so he sacrifices is love life to protect her.  It has worked fine until he sees Lamar again, and all of the emotions he's kept hidden for 15 years come flooding back.

There was a lot of angst and drama in this story.  Lamar is being stalked by someone who vandalizes his car numerous times and breaks into his house.  Dominic has a big family, some of whom are homophobic, especially his father.  Staying in the closet hasn't been a problem until Lamar arrives, and Dom goes back and forth with coming out, which hurts Lamar.  However, it was worth the read to catch up with the couples from previous books in the series.  Matt and Jared as well as Angelo and Zach all play important roles in helping Lamar and Dominic, especially Matt since he is the police officer working on Lamar's stalking case.  And there was a cute kitty with the silly name of Missy Prissy Pom-Pom Paw!  Another great story from Marie Sexton.  260 pages (Kindle edition).

"Winter Ball" by Amy Lane

This is another good story about two close friends who become lovers much to their surprise.  Skipper Keith coaches a rec league soccer team when he's not working the help desk at a tech company.  Richie Scoggins is his best friend, star player on the team, and works in his father's junkyard.   Both men are unhappy at their jobs; Richie stays at his due to guilt from his father.  Skipper stays at his because he doesn't know what else to do.  There are lots of secondary characters who change the men's lives for better and for worse.  I really liked this book and how it described each man's acceptance of being gay.  200 pages (Kindle edition).

"The Mating of Michael" by Eli Easton

This is an unusual love story about two very different men with lots of baggage.  Michael Lamont is a home health nurse with a former burlesque dancer as his main client, and James Gallway is a successful novelist who contracted polio at age five and must use a wheelchair.  Michael loves James' books, and when they meet at a book signing, Michael is smitten.  However, James is practically a hermit and is dealing with his books not selling as well as his first, which he wrote at age 18.  They do eventually start dating, but Michael has a big secret that may tear them apart. 

This was a well written story with enough angst to make me worry that there wouldn't be an HEA.  James is not a very likable person at the beginning, but once we learn more about his childhood the reader can understand why he has a huge chip on his shoulder.  Michael is a sweet, giving, and trusting soul, and is the heart of this book.  His client, Marnie, is a hoot and gives the story a lot of its humor.  I liked most things about it except its title.  (It is part of a series but can be read as a standalone; I have not read the others but might in the future.)  240 pages (Kindle edition).

Friday, April 29, 2016

Comedians of Country Music by Stacy Harris

(Posted for Paul Mathews)

Twelve country musicians could be called the stars of "Hee Haw".  Uncle Dave Macon started his career late in life, but became one of the memorable stars.

Audio:  1 hour, 1 minute
Print:  71 pages

Thereby Hangs a Tail: A Chet and Bernie Mystery by Spencer Quinn

(Posted for Paul Mathews)

This book is about Chet, a private detective dog, involved with a case of a dog kidnapping, a murder, a bad policeman, and a dog show with a blue ribbon winner.

Audio:  7 hours, 45 minutes
Print:  336 pages

Me Before You by Jojo Meyes

369 pages

I'm finally getting back to reading full books!  And completing them!  I had a little trouble not nit-picking this one in the first few pages, and I didn't feel that "I have to CONSUME this book" in the beginning either.  But then it sucked me in. And imagining Sam Claflin playing the character Will in the movie version didn't hurt the absorption factor. ;)

Here's the Amazon review:

Amazon Best Books of the Month, January 2013: Before Louisa met Will, her plans didn't reach beyond their tiny English town. Will, when he wasn't closing multimillion-dollar deals, blew off steam scaling mountains, leaping from planes, and enjoying exquisite women--until an accident left him paralyzed and seriously depressed. When his mother hires Lou to keep his spirits up, he meets her awkward overtures with caustic contempt, but she's tenacious and oddly endearing. Their fondness grows into something deeper, gaining urgency when she realizes his determination to end his life, and her efforts to convince him of its value throw her own bland ambitions into question. Plumbing morally complex depths with comedy and compassion, Jojo Moyes elevates the story of Lou and Will from what could have been a maudlin weepie into a tragic love story, with a catharsis that will wring out your heart and leave you feeling fearless. --Mari Malcolm --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Never Never: Part Three by Colleen Hoover

Never Never: Part Three (Never Never, #3)Never Never: Part Three by Colleen Hoover
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I thought this was a decent conclusion to this novella series, though I confess I read books 1 and 2 so long ago that I don't quite remember what all happened.

Pages: 130

November 9 by Colleen Hoover

So, don't read my silly review, but read Becky's review of November 9! I was originally drawn to the title/cover of November 9, since November 9 is also a special day in my life. I had forgotten about it for a while, but Becky's review reminded me to read it. 

All I can say is WOW. This book is different, confusing, intriguing, etc. And includes a HUGE plot twist. It deals with some pretty heavy family drama towards the end, and it left me emotionally wrecked. So do not read this book without preparing yourself. 

310 pages

Ignite by Sara B. Larson

Ignite (Defy, #2)Ignite by Sara B. Larson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed this sequel. It's angsty, and I really liked that. It worked in a way that was interesting and not annoying. Overall, this is a fun fantasy series, and I am looking forward to reading book three.

Pages: 304

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Ready Player OneReady Player One by Ernest Cline
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This YA Sci-Fi novel is fantastic. It's full of nerdy 80s references that made me want to relive my youth.

Don't read this one. Instead, listen to the audiobook, which is read by Wil Wheaton, because it's excellent.

Pages: 400
Listening Length: 15 hours and 46 minutes

Sunday, April 24, 2016

The New Senior Woman: Reinventing the Years Beyond Mid-Life by Barbara M. Fleisher and Thelma Reese

I picked this up from one of our library's displays.  Fleisher and Reese share the stories and views of many women in an attempt to explore the questions facing women as they move into their 60's and beyond - what do you do if you retire? should you downsize? move near your kids? how do you keep and develop new friends?  and how to deep with the inevitable separations and loss in life, but maintain a good spirit?  This is a thought provoking short book that also lists a number of good resources for further exploration.  225 pages.

The Hourglass Factory by Lucy Ribchester

London, 1912, the suffragette movement is reaching fever pitch, and the police are desperate to stop them from causing civil disruption.  Women are hauled off to prison and subjected to force feeding.  Ribchester has used the suffragette movement and its major figures as a basis for a rather flamboyant murder mystery.  Our detective is a wannabe female journalist (yes, there were a few in that period), eager to get a story, who gets involved in the murder investigation when a trapeze artist/suffragette she is sent to do a story about disappears.  Ebony Diamond turns out to actually have been the target in two murders, and our intrepid hero, "Frankie" George sets out through the London underworld to find her.  The story has the feel of an early silent movie, with cliffhangers, plot twists, and a variety of offbeat characters.  While a bit of a romp through London, Ribchester has thoroughly researched the period and manages to give us a good feel the climate of the city during those days.  502 pages