Monday, April 12, 2021

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph

It's Tuesday . . . time for . . . 



. . . First Chapter ~ First Paragraph Tuesday Intros . . . now hosted by Yvonne at Socrates' Book Reviews, where bloggers share excerpts from a book they have read, are currently reading, or are planning to read.
 

Today I'm featuring a current read, Eleanor in the Village by Jan Jarboe Russell. The except shared is from a hardcover version borrowed from the library.



First Chapter:  New York New York

"I think at a child's birth, if a mother could ask

a fairy godmother to endow it with the most useful gift,

that gift should be curiosity."

--Eleanor Roosevelt


Eleanor was born into an old and large clan of Dutch merchants who had arrived in the seventeenth century and settled in the colony of New Amsterdam at the southern tip of Manhattan. The first of the Roosevelts in New York were Claes Martenzen van Roosevelt and his wife, Jannetje, who arrived by ship from Holland sometime before 1648. Eight generations of Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt's ancestors built fortunes as importers of West Indian sugar, as bankers, and as speculators in Manhattan real estate. All of the Roosevelts who came along after the seventeenth century were born on Manhattan Island, but in time the clan split into the two groups: the Oyster Bay Roosevelts on Long Island, who were associated with Eleanor's father, Elliott, and with her uncle Theodore, and who belonged to the Republican Party; and the Hyde Park Roosevelts, who, by contrast, were linked to James Roosevelt Sr. and Sara Delano Roosevelt, parents of Franklin and supporters of the Democratic Party.


What do you think?  Would you continue reading? 

The opening paragraph is very informative, providing some background on a woman I have long admired. I am enjoying learning more about her and her long association with New York City.




 



This First Chapter~First Paragraph post was originally composed and/or compiled by Catherine for the Book Club Librarian blog. © 2021, Book Club Librarian All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Book Club Librarian without attribution, know that this post is being used without permission.

 

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Friday Focus: The Friday 56 & Book Beginnings

 

    16


It's Friday . . . time to share book excerpts with:
  • Book Beginnings on Fridays hosted by Rose City Reader, where bloggers share the first sentence or more of a current read, as well as initial thoughts about the sentence(s), impressions of the book, or anything else that the opening inspires.  
  • The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice, where you grab a book and turn to page 56 (or 56% of an eBook), find one or more interesting sentences (no spoilers), and post them.

Today I'm featuring an upcoming read, The House Uptown by Melissa Ginsburg. The excerpts shared are from a hardcover version borrowed from the library.

 

The House Uptown: A Novel


Beginning: Prologue

1997

Lane came awake to the sound of unoiled hinges, her heart pumping hard. She had been dreaming of a massive cloud, a storm that blew all the doors open, dread billowing around her.

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Page 56:  Back then, when both her parents were alive, she used to think bad things came in from the outside, poaching from the edges of the field. Now she understood that even the house, the barns and sheds, the prairie fire crabapples and the oozing maples were made of death.

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My thoughts:  I am drawn to this book because it centers on the relationship between a grandmother and granddaughter. The beginning excerpt is in the grandmother's voice, and the Page 56 snippet is in the granddaughter's.

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From GoodReads:  For fans of Megan Abbott and Laura Lippman, Melissa Ginsburg's The House Uptown is an emotional coming-of-age novel about a young girl who goes to live with her eccentric grandmother in New Orleans after the death of her mother.

Ava, 14 years old and totally on her own, has still not fully processed her mother's death when she finds herself on a train heading to New Orleans, going to stay with Lane, her grandmother whom she's never met.

Lane is a well-known artist in the New Orleans art scene. She spends most of her days in a pot-smoke haze, sipping iced coffee, and working on the mural that has been her singular focus for years. Her grip on reality is shaky at best, but her work provides a comfort.

Ava's arrival unsettles Lane. The girl bears an uncanny resemblance to her daughter, whom she was estranged from before her death. Now her presence is dredging up painful and disturbing memories, which forces Lane to retreat even further into her own mind. Ava, meanwhile, is entranced and frightened by her grandmother. She wants to be included in her eccentric life, but can't quite navigate Lane's tempestuous moods.

Attempting to keep the peace is Oliver, Lane's assistant and confidant. As this unlikely trio attempts to find their way and form a bond, the oppressive heat and history of New Orleans bears down on them, forcing them to a reckoning none of them is ready for.




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This Friday Focus: The Friday 56 & Book Beginnings post was originally composed and/or compiled and published by Catherine for the blog, bookclublibrarian.com.  It cannot be republished without attribution. 

© 2021 Book Club Librarian All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Book Club Librarian without attribution, know that this post has been stolen and was used without permission. 

Monday, April 5, 2021

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph

 It's Tuesday . . . time for . . . 



. . . First Chapter ~ First Paragraph Tuesday Intros . . . now hosted by Yvonne at Socrates' Book Reviews, where bloggers share excerpts from a book they have read, are currently reading, or are planning to read.
 

Today I'm featuring an upcoming read, Gathering Dark by Candice Fox, the first book in the Jessica Sanchez series. Jessica is a detective with the LAPD. The excerpt shared is from a hardcover version borrowed from the library.




First Chapter:  Blair

I looked up into the eye of a gun. She'd been that quiet. That fast. At the edge of my vision I'd half seen a figure pass the front window of the Pump'n'Jump gas station, a shadow-walker blur against the red sunset and silhouetted palm trees. That was it. She stuck the gun in my face before the buzzer had finished the one-note song that announced her, made her real. The gun was shaking, a bad thing made somehow worse. I put down the pen I'd been using to fill out the crossword.

 

What do you think?  Would you continue reading? 

Sounds like a robbery is in progress--which makes me want to read on to find out more.





 



This First Chapter~First Paragraph post was originally composed and/or compiled by Catherine for the Book Club Librarian blog. © 2021, Book Club Librarian All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Book Club Librarian without attribution, know that this post is being used without permission.

 

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Friday Focus: The Friday 56 and Book Beginnings

 

 16


It's Friday . . . time to share book excerpts with:
  • Book Beginnings on Fridays hosted by Rose City Reader, where bloggers share the first sentence or more of a current read, as well as initial thoughts about the sentence(s), impressions of the book, or anything else that the opening inspires.  
  • The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice, where you grab a book and turn to page 56 (or 56% of an eBook), find one or more interesting sentences (no spoilers), and post them.

Today I'm featuring an upcoming read, A Glimmer of Death by Valerie Wilson Wesley. It's the first book in the Odessa Jones Mystery Series. The excerpts shared are from a trade paperback version borrowed from the library.


A Glimmer of Death


Beginning:  The office reeked of nutmeg. It tickled my nose, filled my mouth, forcing its way down my throat. Funny thing about nutmeg. A dash can spice up cocoa; too much can make you sick. Determined to ignore it, I focused on the real estate listings in front of me. Yet the smell would't leave. I closed my eyes, trying to block this pain-in-the-neck, useless sixth sense, but it did no good. To me, Odessa Jones, nutmeg means death.

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Page 56:  "Mrs. Odessa Jones." A pat on my shoulder and a gruff voice brought me into the present. A stern pair of eyes loomed above me, waiting for a response. "Would you come with me, please?"

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My thoughts:  Unlike the lead character, nutmeg doesn't make me think of death; rather, it's a scent I associate with holiday baking. So why does Odessa Jones feel this way? I'm curious to find out, and looking forward to starting a new series set in my neighboring state of New Jersey.

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From GoodReads:  Award-winning author Valerie Wilson Wesley launches a thrilling new mystery series set in New Jersey, featuring a multicultural cast, and starring a caterer-turned-realtor with the gift of second sight...

In the first of a thrilling new series, one woman's extraordinary psychic gift plunges her already-troubled present into chaos--and puts her future in someone's deadly sights...

Until now, Odessa Joness's inherited ability to read emotions and foretell danger has protected her. But second sight didn't warn her she would soon be a widow--and about to lose her home and the catering business she's worked so hard to build. The only things keeping Dessa going are her love for baking and her sometimes-mellow cat, Juniper. Unfortunately, putting her life back together means taking a gig at an all-kinds-of-shady real estate firm run by volatile owner Charlie Risko...

Until Charlie is brutally killed--and Dessa's bullied co-worker is arrested for murder. Dessa can't be sure who's guilty. But it doesn't take a psychic to discover that everyone from Charlie's much-abused staff to his long-suffering younger wife had multiple reasons to want him dead. And as Dessa follows a trail of lies through blackmail, dead-end clues, and corruption, she needs to see the truth fast--or a killer will bury her deep down with it.
 



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This Friday Focus: The Friday 56 & Book Beginnings post was originally composed and/or compiled and published by Catherine for the blog, bookclublibrarian.com.  It cannot be republished without attribution. 

© 2021 Book Club Librarian All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Book Club Librarian without attribution, know that this post has been stolen and was used without permission. 

Monday, March 29, 2021

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph

  It's Tuesday . . . time for . . . 



. . . First Chapter ~ First Paragraph Tuesday Intros . . . now hosted by Yvonne at Socrates' Book Reviews, where bloggers share excerpts from a book they have read, are currently reading, or are planning to read.
 

Today I'm featuring an upcoming read, The Library of the Unwritten by A.J. Hackwith, the first book in the Hell's Library fantasy series. The excerpt shared is from a trade paperback version borrowed from the library.




First Chapter:  Claire

Books ran when they grew restless, when they grew unruly, or when they grew real. Regardless of the reason, when books ran, it was a librarian's duty to catch them.

 

What do you think?  Would you continue reading? 

While fantasy is not a genre I usually gravitate to, as a librarian I find the title irresistible and the premise intriguing. I'm accustomed to caring for published books, but the idea of being responsible for unfinished stories and their characters living in a type of limbo is unchartered territory I'd like to explore.




 



This First Chapter~First Paragraph post was originally composed and/or compiled by Catherine for the Book Club Librarian blog. © 2021, Book Club Librarian All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Book Club Librarian without attribution, know that this post is being used without permission.

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Friday Focus: The Friday 56 & Book Beginnings

    16


It's Friday . . . time to share book excerpts with:
  • Book Beginnings on Fridays hosted by Rose City Reader, where bloggers share the first sentence or more of a current read, as well as initial thoughts about the sentence(s), impressions of the book, or anything else that the opening inspires.  
  • The Friday 56 hosted by Freda's Voice, where you grab a book and turn to page 56 (or 56% of an eBook), find one or more interesting sentences (no spoilers), and post them.

Today I'm featuring an upcoming read, Willa's Grove by Laura Munson. The excerpts shared are from a hardcover version borrowed from the library.


Beginning: The Women

On a typical day in their typical lives, three women went to their mailboxes and found--amid junk mail and bills and shiny flyers for unshiny things--an invitation, sealed with a bold W pressed into sage-green wax.

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Page 56:  Jane crossed her arms even tighter. "I honestly don't know. I was lying in bed last night with my suitcase all packed, dreaming up all the reasons why I didn't want to come. Thinking that the So Now What question doesn't have to be that hard to answer..."

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My thoughts:  I find this novel's plot very intriguing--the question of what to do when you reach a crossroads in life, and coming together with friends to think it through.

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From GoodReads:  Three women, from coast to coast and in between, open their mailboxes to the same intriguing invitation. Although leading entirely different lives, each has found herself at a similar, jarring crossroads. Right when these women thought they'd be comfortably settling into middle age, their carefully curated futures have turned out to be dead ends.

The sender of the invitation is Willa Silvester, who is reeling from the untimely death of her beloved husband and the reality that she must say goodbye to the small mountain town they founded together. Yet as Willa mourns her losses, an impossible question keeps staring her in the face: So now what?

Struggling to find the answer alone, fiercely independent Willa eventually calls a childhood friend who happens to be in her own world of hurt--and that's where the idea sparks. They decide to host a weeklong interlude from life, and invite two other friends facing their own quandaries. Soon the four women converge at Willa's Montana homestead, a place where they can learn from nature and one another as they contemplate their second acts together in the rugged wilderness of big sky country.
 

 




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This Friday Focus: The Friday 56 & Book Beginnings post was originally composed and/or compiled and published by Catherine for the blog, bookclublibrarian.com.  It cannot be republished without attribution. 

© 2021 Book Club Librarian All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Book Club Librarian without attribution, know that this post has been stolen and was used without permission.  



Monday, March 22, 2021

First Chapter ~ First Paragraph

 It's Tuesday . . . time for . . . 



. . . First Chapter ~ First Paragraph Tuesday Intros . . . now hosted by Yvonne at Socrates' Book Reviews, where bloggers share excerpts from a book they have read, are currently reading, or are planning to read.
 

Today I'm featuring my current read, His Only Wife by Peace Adzo Medie.  The excerpt shared is from an advance reader electronic copy I received from the publisher.

His Only Wife

First Chapter:  Elikem married me in absentia; he did not come to our wedding. The ceremony was held on the third Saturday in January in the rectangular courtyard of my Uncle Pious's house, which was bordered by two-roomed apartments and a wooden gate that opened onto a busy footpath. Our relatives, stirring with equal measures of happiness, but for different reasons, sat opposite one another on rented plastic chairs that were neatly arranged in rows that filled the courtyard. The partly walled kitchen had been scrubbed and cleared of the cast-iron coal pots, on which my uncle's wives prepared the evening meal, and of the enamel basins that they used for washing and storing dishes. My uncle's sitting room chairs, upholstered with a carpet-like fabric and polished so that the chocolate-brown wooden frames glistened, were also brought outdoors and comprised the front row where the elders of each family would sit.

 

What do you think?  Would you continue reading? 

The first sentence is an attention grabber that raises so many questions, especially given the book title.  The descriptions in the rest of the paragraph paint a vivid picture of the wedding venue and build anticipation for the wedding ceremony. I am reading this novel for a book club at work that I'll be joining for the first time, and look forward to reading and discussing this book.





 



This First Chapter~First Paragraph post was originally composed and/or compiled by Catherine for the Book Club Librarian blog. © 2021, Book Club Librarian All Rights Reserved. If you're reading this on a site other than Book Club Librarian without attribution, know that this post is being used without permission.

 

Friday, March 19, 2021

Great Escapes Blog Tour and Review: Murder By Page One by Olivia Matthews

 

Today I’m participating in the Murder By Page One Great Escapes Blog Tour. In this post you’ll find information about the book and author along with my review.


About the book . . .

 Murder by Page One (Peach Coast Library Mystery #1) 

 Murder by Page One (A Peach Coast Library Mystery)

Cozy Mystery
1st in Series
Publisher: Hallmark Publishing (March 23, 2021)
Print length: 328 pages
Digital ASIN: B08KHPBDBS
 


Synopsis . . . Marvey, a librarian, has moved from Brooklyn to a quirky small town in Georgia. When she’s not at the library organizing events for readers, she’s handcrafting book-themed jewelry and looking after her cranky cat. At times, her new life in the South still feels strange…and that’s before the discovery of the dead body in the bookstore.

After one of her friends becomes a suspect, Marvey sets out to solve the murder mystery. She even convinces Spence, the wealthy and charming newspaper owner, to help. With his ties to the community, her talents for research, and her fellow librarians’ knowledge, Marvey pursues the truth. But as she gets closer to it, could she be facing a deadly plot twist?

This first in series cozy mystery includes a free Hallmark original recipe for Classic Peach Cobbler.

 

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My review . . .  After accepting the position of director of community engagement for the Peach Coast Library, librarian Marvella (Marvey) Harris trades the hectic pace of Brooklyn, New York for the laid-back lifestyle of Peach Coast, Georgia. Over the past four months, she has made a small circle of loyal friends and savvy co-workers, and discovers her librarian research skills are very effective for investigating the murder her new best friend Jo has been accused of. 

When local author Fiona Lyle-Hayes is found in a pool of blood at To Be Read Bookstore before she is to sign copies of her debut novel, the police zero in on the store's owner, Jo Gomez as their main suspect. Jo and Fiona had had a minor disagreement shortly before the event began, but it hardly rose to the level of such a drastic conclusion. Still, the police are intent on quickly closing the case against Jo on the flimsiest of evidence. 

Putting her best library research skills to the test, Marvey is determined to find out who framed her friend Jo for the crime and why Fiona was killed. Is this a case of revenge, jealousy, or rivalry--or something else? As Marvey asks questions and gets closer to the truth, she finds herself in the line of danger. She experiences several minor, though unusual accidents that leave her wondering if she can reveal the identity of the killer before becoming a victim herself.

Set in a quaint small Southern town, Murder By Page One introduces a spunky sleuth and a community that takes pride in its traditions, gossip, library, bookstore, and coffee shop. Protagonist Marvey is friendly, talented, and resourceful; and the cast of Peach Coast residents she interacts with is a good balance of quirky, eccentric, and contemporary folks  And when she's not recommending books to patrons, planning and hosting library events, and increasing the library's reach by signing up more townspeople for library cards, Marvey is learning the local customs and phrases.  

The plot features a pleasing mix of red herrings and unexpected developments, and the setting includes the type of establishments; namely, a bookstore and library, that enthralls cozy mystery lovers. The cultural clash between Marvey's direct approach to matters and the more subtle style of the town's residents adds an entertaining aspect to the story. All of these features make Murder By Page One a delightful start to the Peach Coast Library mystery series and a welcome addition to the cozy mystery genre.

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About the author . . . Olivia Matthews is the cozy mystery pseudonym for Patricia Sargeant, a national best-selling, award-winning author.

 

Her work has been featured in national publications such as Publishers Weekly, USA Today, Kirkus Reviews, Suspense Magazine, Mystery Scene Magazine, Library Journal and RT Book Reviews.

 

Author links . . . 

Website: https://PatriciaSargeant.com.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorPatriciaSargeant.

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BooksbyPatricia

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/olivia-matthews

 

Purchase links . . .  Amazon –  Hallmark Publishing  –  Apple  –  Barnes & Noble – Bookshop –  Fantastic Fiction  –  Kobo 

 

  


Tour Participants . . .

March 18 – Christa Reads and Writes – REVIEW 

March 18 – A Wytch’s Book Review Blog – CHARACTER INTERVIEW

March 18 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW

March 18 – Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic – SPOTLIGHT

March 18 – I’m All About Books – SPOTLIGHT

March 18 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW

March 19 – Cozy Up With Kathy – REVIEW, AUTHOR INTERVIEW

March 19 – Book Club Librarian – REVIEW  

March 19 – Books to the Ceiling – SPOTLIGHT

March 19 – Brooke Blogs – SPOTLIGHT

March 19 – Ruff Drafts – SPOTLIGHT

March 19 – I Read What You Write – REVIEW

March 20 – Literary Gold – CHARACTER GUEST POST

March 20 – MJB Reviewers – REVIEW

March 20 – Baroness’ Book Trove – REVIEW

March 20 – Maureen’s Musings – SPOTLIGHT

March 20 – Sapphyria’s Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

March 20 – Author Elena Taylor’s Blog – AUTHOR INTERVIEW

March 21 – Celticlady’s Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

March 21 – The Book Diva’s Reads – SPOTLIGHT

March 21 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT

March 21 – The Book’s the Thing – REVIEW

March 22 – Novels Alive – GUEST POST

March 22 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW

March 22 – Reading Reality – REVIEW

March 22 – Novels Alive – REVIEW

March 22 – Melina’s Book Blog – REVIEW

March 22 – Reading Is My SuperPower – REVIEW

 

 

 

 

Note . . . I received a complimentary copy of Murder By Page One from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.



 


This Blog Tour and Review post was originally composed and/or compiled and published by Catherine for the Book Club Librarian blog.  It cannot be republished without attribution.