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Monday, May 30, 2011

Cross Fire by James Patterson

Cross Fire (Alex Cross, #17)Cross Fire by James Patterson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Tight, suspenseful and engaging, "Cross Fire" was a quick read that I couldn't put down.  Alex Cross is one of my favorite characters in fiction. He was present in this novel in all of his fatherly doctor of psychology and sleuth behaviors.  He is also hopelessly romantic.

Of course, Kyle Craig is back in one of his most ingenious evil plots to kill Alex and his family.  But that plot line is supplemented with a sniper team doing a Robin Hood type campaign of serial killings and another killer carving mathematical equations into his victims.

Maybe it's my imagination, but Patterson seems to allude to NJ politics when the action moves to Brick Township, NJ.  Officer Guadagno, a blond woman, is sent to meet him. Her boss is Detective Cowen, a smart man who is very talkative.  Later, back in DC, a couple of liberal leaning Supreme Court Justices suddenly need to be replaced.  Go figure.

The conclusion of the novel is horribly chilling.  Also, did I mention that Cross gets married?

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Sunday, May 8, 2011

BBQ Spring 2011

Let me catch up on posts about weekends.  During the last weekend in April, my sister, my daughter and I traveled to the Adventurer Inn in Wildwood Crest, NJ for a Bed, Breakfast and Quilt (BBQ) weekend.  It was the first time that we all spent a weekend together!  It was fun.

Little Jackie (my daughter) completed a baby quilt, a charity quilt top and began stripping together Moda Candy Bars for a ladder quilt.

Aunt Jackie (my sister) stitched a complete quilt top for her friend Nina.  It will be a Christmas gift.  We spent the previous Friday together shopping at Pieceful Choices, having dinner with my friends Tom, Linda and Vic, and cutting out the pieces for her quilt.

I worked on an applique project and a pink project for a thriving survivor.  And, I am still working on the quilting in hopes of having it finished it time to donate in October.

We took a break to travel to Ocean City to make a quick trip to Calico & Cotton. and to Somers Point for lunch at the Crab Trap.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Garden Sampler

Collecting fabrics printed with vegetables was a lot of fun.  My sister even found some for me during her travels! 

This cute rabbit started it all when I saw this little wall quilt in "Quilter's World" magazine.
I am hanging it in my dinette for the rest of the Spring and Summer :)

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

The Shadow of the WindThe Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Bravo!  It is difficult to imagine a book lover who could not connect in some way with this complex novel.  Themes abound:  father/son, 1st. love, devil vs. innocent, social study/political study, historical mystery, romance...all set in post-war Barcelona circa 1945.  Long and engaging, Lucia Graves' translation shares all of the artistry of Zafon's Spanish best-seller.

The best scene, for me, was Daniel's 16th. birthday party at which his widowed father, a bookseller, gave him a special gift after a worrisome night.

My favorite character was Fermin Romero de Torres, "...bibliographic advisor for Sempere and Son."

So absorbing that my life was on hold while I read it, I even borrowed the audio book from the Nutley Library to keep the story going while I was driving, quilting, and cooking! Jonathan Davis' flawless accents and pronunciations of Spanish proper nouns on the audio reading gave the story even more flavor. I was reluctant to hear the story end. A great book for vacation reading, I recommend it to lovers of great novels.

The "Cemetery of Forgotten Books" chapter which precedes chapter 1 reeled me in.  The premise so unique and beautifully written that I put the book aside to clear other projects from my list before giving it my full attention.  It is snowing today.  I have not been able to put it down. -Mom JoAnn 3/23/2011

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