Tag Archives: books

Apartment Neighbors

Do you live in an apartment? Have you lived in one in the past?

Did you know your neighbors? By sight? By name? By car?

Often when I lived in an apartment I got to know only a small portion of my neighbors. Well enough to exchange greetings in the laundry room or at the mailbox. Perhaps exchange a few standard phrases in the parking lot.

What if you got acquainted on a deeper level? Yes, beyond borrowing an egg when you ran out in the middle of a recipe.

In this St. Louis set sweet, romantic suspense — he’s the new neighbor in the apartment directly below Maylee Morgan’s. These two young professionals discover they have more in common than a love of running in the nearby park.

For Nook readers; https://bit.ly/3dU94Bq

For Kindle readers: http://amzn.to/1LXiTwP

HVAC on your Mind?

Are we out of the deep freeze yet? When will the sun come out? Brrr. I’m NOT opening that window again until it’s above freezing.

In the previous month, I think I’ve said all of the above — some of them multiple times. When winter arrived, she brought luggage and put up her feet to stay.

One way to get your mind off the weather is to settle in to a good book. As an author, I’m also a reader. Click on over to the Book Review tab to find a sampling of my reading. But today I want to recommend some of my writing.

Comfort Zone, a sweet romance, presents the story of Janet and Rich. The HVAC tech and the detective. The divorcee and widower. Mother of the bride and uncle of the groom. I encourage you to try their story — you might even learn a little about St. Louis.

For Kindle readers:https://amzn.to/338z1K1

For Nook readers:https://bit.ly/3bXU97a

Also available at other popular on-line retailers.

Review Tuesday 4

All good things end in due time. Since this is the final Tuesday in January, this is my final post of 2020 book reviews. Books can take you anywhere — so let’s drop in to a different time and place.

The Hidden Moon

By: Jeannie Lin

Step back to 9th century China.

Murder. Mystery. Forbidden love. Ms. Lin combines all of these and more in the most recent Lotus Palace Mystery. Follow Wei-wei as she sees places and meets people far different from her rich, aristocratic family.

Perk Up the Brain

Be careful what you read! You might learn something!

Lest my readers begin to think this fiction author only stuffs her head with fiction and omits “serious” reading I present to you a short stack of non-fiction I’ve really enjoyed. (Yes, I used the words non-fiction and enjoy in the same sentence. These were not assigned reading for a class.)

History, history, biography (a special branch of history) and guide to historical places. Yes you see a trend.

While reading certain chapters within these books I learned more than facts. I pondered how people reacted to events then and could compare to how people are reacting to events in the present. It makes a person skeptical of power structures, “the old boys club”, and the influence of money. I’m sure if I re-read any of these in the next few months I’d find something new — for my experiences in the real world are constantly shaping my attitudes and opinions.

Do you have some favorite non-fiction volumes you’d hesitate to part with? A shelf of them? A bookcase worth? More?

Review Tuesday 3

Writers should read. It’s good to read in the same genre you write. So if you notice a trend toward romance in this short series of posts — it’s because this romance writer reads a variety of romance. (Plus other things — many were quality, but not reviewed by this author.)

Today I feature a new face. A St. Louis area resident. All around good person.

My Forever Home

By: Debbie Burns

A winning combination…dogs and baseball.

While Tess Grasso coaxes a loose dog back to the leash holder, her laptop goes missing. The computer held all her plans for a new business. It’s a perfectly timed job opening at High Grove Animal Shelter which keeps her from returning to work at her uncle’s sandwich shop.

Professional baseball player, Mason Redding, wants to be liked as a person, not a celebrity. It’s a delicate business to get acquainted with Tess without tipping his hand.

Ms. Burns writes a delightful romance. Animal and human characters have personalities larger than life. This series is a winner. Five paws!

Review Tuesday 2

Last week you read about my top choice of non-fiction for 2020. Today I want to introduce you to my favorite fiction read (actually a re-read — it was just as good the second time around)

The Black Hawk

By: Joanna Bourne

Second Time better than the first.

While I recognized this as both excellent story and writing the first time around, it was even better as a re-read.

Ms. Bourne takes us back to the time of the French Revolution and the rise and fall of Napoleon.  A French Spy and English Spy develop a VERY complicated relationship.

The entire Spymaster series is excellent, but I rate this as best of the best.

Review Tuesday 1

Before striding full force into 2021, I’m taking a glance back as some of the best books I read and reviewed in 2020. First up — a non-fiction.

The Radium Girls

By: Kate Moore


The innocent girls were proud of their work as dial painters. The luminous dials on watches and aircraft instruments saved lives in WWI. In the 1920’s the dials moved into homes on alarm clocks and wristwatches.

Then they began to die–horrible deaths. Dentists and physicians played detective.

Ms. Moore follows two groups of dial painters in this non-fiction volume which reads better than some novels. Discover the legacy and ponder as a cautionary tale.

Open with Caution

CAREFUL — you might learn something!

Did either of your parents issue that warning? It was usually my dad who voiced it at our house. Often it was half a joke when you were doing some practical task for the first time.

Learning can be very hands on.

When I was eight or nine, we had just a few milk cows (just getting started) and mother asked me to whip some cream to put on our dessert. So I used the electric mixer and whipped away. Is it done? No. Now? No. How about now? Keep going and you’ll have butter.  Lesson: if you go past soft peaks too far, you’ll get to butter. (This may not work with homogenized and pasteurized products.)

Or it can me all mental. Think of what you’ve learned about ancient Egypt — I’ll guess much of it has been from books. Perhaps some in conversation, lectures, or movies.


You might learn something beyond the library door.


Mind and Body

Use your mind to keep it sharp! You’ve heard the advice for members of the “Boomer” generation.

Keep moving! Use it or lose it! Advertisements shout for our attention to buy clothing and equipment and exercise programs. It can get exhausting.

One day, while looking for one thing, I found both. Or at least the opportunity to do both.

First the mind–

Our local library system has a new branch. Well, actually a new building for an existing branch. No longer will the patrons of this area need to share space (and be crowded) in a portion of a municipal building. Less than a year ago, this fine new facility opened to serve their book, magazine, and video needs. Computer access and classes. Meeting space. All in clean, bright space — when the pandemic will allow us back into the building.

Now the body —

You can’t see it in the photo. So I invite you to image behind the photographer, at the edge of the parking lot. A paved walking path. Open during daylight hours. (I’ve never been much for walking in the dark.) Adults — do you want to exercise the body first? Or do you prefer after you check out your library items and stash them in your vehicle? Are the children rowdy? Perhaps a little physical exercise first before they enter and use their “inside” voices.

Magic Passport

Do you enjoy traveling? Are you looking forward to seeing new things? Is it the experience you anticipate?

In this unusual year of 2020 I encourage you to stride into your local library and use (or obtain) a magic passport.

I don’t read much you respond. — No problem.  Most libraries also carry movies, TV shows, and audio books. Some allow you to check out games (video and board) and puzzles.

Thanks to library materials I’ve gone to the Pacific during WWII with the US Marines, popped in to England in 1928, and solved a mystery in Quebec. And that’s only since they re-opened after our initial quarantine! Where will your magic passport take you?  The future?  Outer space? Ancient Egypt? Or the current halls of government?