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~ Kathy M.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Blue Monday and Bargain Book Bonanza #11 ~ Book Reviews: "Case Histories" and "Heart and Soul"

This morning I was looking around for something else blue to post for Blue Monday, to go along with my blue books.  I found this picture of Nigel and me, taken on a school field trip when he was in 5th grade (around 11 years ago).  I remember that field trip well.  We rode the bus to the Upper McKenzie River near McKenzie Bridge, Oregon.  We went behind a locked gate, to a place where the salmon were busy spawning.   They were all over the place, in shallow water ... you could have petted them if you are the type of person who enjoys petting fish.  It was also the last time that I had longer blond hair.  (I'm giving that a whirl again right now.)  If I remember right, the cool little picture frame was only around $3 or $4; a great bargain.

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy ~ Kathy Matthews

Bargain.  That is the word that leads us into the next part of this post, which is about the weekly meme over at Mrs. Baja Greenawalt's Book Blog: Bargain Book Bonanza.  I bought the two books below as great bargains, and am going to tell you a bit about them.  

First, though, I want to thank JMJ over at Shredded Cheddar for giving me a shout out on her blog.  About a month ago, I was featuring some books that I bought for a steal at St. Vinnies in Mayberry.  It was 1/2 off day.  I got a bunch of The Babysitter's Club books for .25 each.  JMJ is a tutor and she was rejoicing at my good deal, so I sent her some of those books to share with her students.  JMJ is also participating in this week's BBB linky party today.  Please CLICK HERE to visit Shredded Cheddar.

Okay, now on to my bargain book reviews:

Case Histories
Copyright 2004, by Kate Atkinson

This bargain book cost me $2.00, and I LOVE it!  I'm not quite done with it yet, but almost am.  It is an example of 6 degrees of separation at its best.  The plot twists and turns and you don't know what is going to happen next.  It is funny, well-written, action-packed, involves murder, solving mysteries and lost and found. 

The first chapter had me hooked, and then the next chapter was a completely different story.  And then another.  Finally, we are introduced to the hero, Jackson, a cop turned private investigator and learn how things are tied together.

This book is a joy, with many well defined characters.  I would have paid full price for it, if I had known about it when it first came out.  A must read, if there ever was one.

Heart and Soul
Copyright 2008, Maeve Binchy

I always enjoy reading Maeve Binchy books.  This is the 13th one that I have read over the years, and I've read several of them more than once.  They are set in Ireland; past and current.   The characters blend into other books, but not in a series sort of a way.  

I had just finished reading Toni Morrison's "Beloved" when I picked up this book.  "Beloved" is excellent, but it is heavy and I still don't understand it all.  No modern day ghost t.v. shows have dealt with what happened in that book, and it confuses me a bit.  So, needless to say, I was ready for a light, enjoyable read ... and that is what I got with Heart and Soul.  

Maeve Binchy has a lot of characters in her books too.  The heroine of this book is single mother Dr. Clara Casey, who sets up and develops a healthy heart center at the hospital where she works.  So many areas of life are touched upon in this book mainly dealing with relationships between generations.    

I recommend this book and all of her other books.  They are a nice escape from everyday life and have happy endings.

This post is a Blue Monday post, so when you are all through here at Oregon Gifts, please visit Sally and others for lots of neat blue things by  CLICKING HERE.

This is also a Bargain Book Bonanza post too, so when you are all done here, please head on over to visit Lesa, Leslie, DeLynne and Tracy over there, by CLICKING HERE.           

If you miss a day, you miss a lot!  Don't miss out on the news ... Please click here to go to my home page and see what is happening in Mayberry today.


SmilingSally said...

Thanks for sharing your blues.

Happy Blue Monday, Kathy.

Arkansas Patti said...

I have never read any of Maeve Binchy books. I may have to correct that is if I can get them on Kindle. I am hooked on that form. Will go check now.

xinex said...

Great photo and memory behind it, Kathy. Love the stained glass frame....Christine

Rajesh said...

Wonderful review.

Enbrethiliel said...


Thanks for returning the shout out and link, Kathy! =)

I just love it when I get a book at a bargain and it turns out to be so good that I know I would have paid full price for it--so I know how you must feel about the Kate Atkinson novel!

The Stephen King blurb on the cover helps a lot, too. ;-)

Kim, USA said...

Kathy love that stain frame!!

Blue Monday

Lisa Ricard Claro said...

Lovely frame, and great photo, especially since you remember so well the time it was taken.

Thanks for the book reviews. I'll check out the Kate Atkinson for sure. :)

Maude Lynn said...

Both of those books sound excellent!

LV said...

Enjoy reading but have not read these books. I do not read as much as used to. I cannot blog and read both. Takes too much time.

Chubskulit Rose said...

I used to be able to read books but when I started blogging, it went away lol.
Blissful Blue, come and see.

BECKY said...

Hi Kathy! Another fabulous post, dahhhling! :)
Have we ever discussed Maeve Binchy? Because I LOVE her, too! Haven't read any in quite a while and I know I need to catch up on her newest ones!

Lesa said...

thanks so much for joining BBB again-- you were missed last week! (But I know you can't join everyweek so no pressure haha)

Case histories does sound intriguing-- and it is fiction! I thought it was nonfiction when you mentioned it the other week.

I've never read Maeve Binchy-- yet another author I must check out sometime.

Your random act of bookish kindness is so generous and thoughtful-- you are like a bookish fairy godmother!!

raya said...

hi kathy! thanks for dropping by my blues.. sure you can copy the "kiss me" sticker idea... i am sure your hubby would love that! haha! i love your photo with your husband dancing! happy blue monday!

Leovi said...

Beautiful colors and textures. I like

DeLynne said...

Maeve Binchy is very popular here in Australia, but does anyone know how to pronounce her name?

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