Saturday, December 31, 2022

December 2022 Books I Read


Third Girl by Agatha Christie I like that Ariandne Oliver is in this book. I also appreciate the references to Colonel Race from Death on the Nile!  I enjoy when the books refer to the other books. 
A Caribbean Mystery by Agatha Christie Miss Marple goes on vacation!
Take a Look at the Five and Ten by Connie Willis (library) Such a lovely little book. A novella about nostalgia and a perfect little Christmas story.
Nemesis by Agatha Christie   Mr Rafiel, who we met in Caribbean Mystery asks Miss Marple to investigate a  murder after his death. This was the last Marple mystery that Christie wrote --although Sleeping Murder is published later, it was written in the 1940's. 
In The Clearing by J.P. Pomare (library) an Australian author, a really good thriller type book about a girl abducted by a cult. 
The Geography of Bliss by Eric Weiner (audiobook) I really enjoyed this one --non fiction, a journalist investigates the Happiest places on earth, and does where you live, how you live make you happy? Are certain cultures predispositioned to be happy?
The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding by Agatha Christie another collection of short stories published in 1960 and most of the stories are from years previous. It is fun to read the "holiday" themed one during the holidays. I think they actually used to publish her books to come out at Christmas time and the tag line was a "Christie for Christmas! "
Fairy Tale by Stephen King (library) very similar to Mr Harrigan's Phone. A boy works for an old man who dies and leaves him a disturbing legacy! 
Curtain by Agatha Christie  She wrote wrote Hercule Poirot's last mystery, and Sleeping Murder during World War II to be published after her death. It is interesting how she was so ready to kill off Poirot at this "early" point in her career. And I for one appreciate the books where she departs from Poirot. But he was much loved by the general public. 
Righteous Prey by John Sandford (library) A nice enjoyable break from all the Agatha Christie lately. I love the characters and it was fun to see Lucas Davenport and Virgil Flowers actually work a case together. 
No Plan B by Lee Child and Andrew Child (library) another break from Agatha Christie. The latest Jack Reacher, very much to the standard code, no surprises or deviations. I was reading this at the same time I also read Righteous Prey by Sandford and I totally preferred the John Sandford book, because of the interplay between the beloved characters in the Prey book. It also was very formulaic, but the enjoyment of hanging with the characters overshadowed that (also I find this with Agatha Christie too, her plots start to merge together in my mind, but I am there for the characters.) Child just has Reacher and he is just the same and probably could do with some growing and changing. My favorite Reacher books are where he thought he had a kid or he was inheriting a house and his life might change...but then it doesn't change and we get the same book over and over again. 
Sleeping Murder by Agatha Christie A girl remembers a murder from her childhood and at first thinks that she is imagining it or she is going crazy, but they start to investigate to see if she really did witness a murder from 20 years ago! This is the last Miss Marple Mystery. 
The Memory of All That by Betsy Blair (library) Her autobiography. She was the wife of Gene Kelly during the 1940's-50's and her experiences with the Hollywood system and being blacklisted. Very interesting. 
A Different Kind of Evil by Andrew Wilson (library) another of these books where Agatha Christie is playing detective and solves the mystery. I do like how he weaves what was going on in Christie's life at the time with what was going on in the world and creates these books from that historical record. 

And Hurrah! I accomplished my resolution to read all the Agatha Christie books this year! I will admit that there are two short story compilations: Poirot's Early Cases and Miss Marple's Final Cases, that I did not get to yet but these contain stories that were in other compilations, so I don't feel like I missed anything. Also I did not read the plays, or her romance novels. Nor did I read her Autobiography or Come Tell Me How You Live about her life with Max on archeological digs. I might do that in 2023, but I will definitely be taking a break from Christie for a few months! Ha ha But I will continue to read the Andrew Wilson books where Christie is a character solving mysteries. 

Monday, December 26, 2022

Aviation Postcards: Merry Christmas!


I want to thank everyone who sends me postcards every year. I love them and especially these aviation themed ones! Thank You to everyone who takes the time to put a card in the mail to me. 
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Monday, December 19, 2022

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Christmas Ornament souvenirs

 I purchase my ornaments while on vacations, from North Carolina to Peru, From North Dakota to Portugal

Wednesday, November 30, 2022

November 2022 Books I Read


Bellweather by Connie Willis very enjoyable book about an academic professor studying Trends, like the hula hoop or pet rock etc. Why do things become trends? fiction
Elephants Can Remember by Agatha Christie this book references two previous books where Poirot solves a mystery by delving into the past. 5 Little Pigs and Murder in Retrospect. And again he interviews people about a mystery that is a decade old. 
No One Goes Alone by Erik Larson (audiobook, library) a ghost story, listened to it over Halloween! 
Cat Among the Pigeons by Agatha Christie This one is a murder set at an exclusive girls boarding school. 
An Elderly Lady Must Not Be Crossed by Helene Tursten (library) I really enjoyed the first book (An Elderly Lady Is Up to No Good) and this one is just as much fun.
Hickory Dickory Dock by Agatha Christie (library) set in a youth hostel with kleptomania and smuggling as the crime and then MURDER
The Pale Horse by Agatha Christie the one with the witches
The Mirror Crack'd by Agatha Christie when you read so many of these, you start to see many of the mysteries have an element from the past, a crime in the past that has be be solved that lead to the crime in the present. 
DA by Connie Willis (library) fun little novella about a student being shanghaied into a program that they are not interested in
The Golden Ball and other stories by Agatha Christie (library) reading these stories from the 1920-30's and you can see how some of the themes and ideas were later made into full books. 
A Place Called Freedom by Ken Follet fun departure from dealing with Agatha Christie and reminds me of an Outlander type story of folks from Scotland seeking freedom in America/the new world! 
At Bertram's Hotel by Agatha Christie (library) this is one of my favorite Christies and it is for the nostalgia of it. It came out in 1965 and she was already writing about days that were long past as far as the "golden age" of travel and hospitality etc. 
Postern of Fate by Agatha Christie (library) The last Tommy and Tuppence Mystery
The Gate House by Nelson Demille (audiobook) I read the Gold Coast many years ago and barely remembered it, this is the sequel and it was just so-so. I listen to these books in my car when I drive to and from work and around town, I actually was half way thru the book and thought I was listening to the same things over and over!! LOL I had to double check which CD I had put in the player. UGH Do not recommend 
Very Cold People by Sarah Manguso (library) a memoir feel very much like Olive Kitterage, but a young girl growing up in Massachusetts. 
Passenger to Frankfurt by Agatha Christie (library) what I really love about this one is the note by the author at the beginning about how she gets her ideas! Brilliant. 
The Big Con by David Maurer (library) very fun book about grifters written many years ago and could have been the basis for the movie The Sting. (there was a lawsuit) 

I still have over 12 Agatha Christie books yet to read to finish her entire mystery realm (I did not read her romances or the autobiography or the book about archaeology)  I don't know if  I will be able to fit them all in during the month of December.  

Monday, November 28, 2022

Aviation Postcards: Virginia

 Postcards from airports in Virginia

The Postcard above is special to me because that is a Piedmont Airplane flying in and also because I was in Norfolk, flying a Piedmont plane on the day that we changed over to USAir during that merger. 

Monday, November 07, 2022

Tuesday, November 01, 2022

October 2022 Books I Read


Three Blind Mice by Agatha Christie (library) stories. The Three Blind Mice story was the basis for the play Mousetrap. Which I wasn't thinking about, but as I was reading it, I could totally see it on stage. Then boom I realized, duh this is the one that inspired the play. 
Murder is Announced by Agatha Christie (library) A Miss Marple, which I enjoyed. I liked how she just explained how everything was a reminder of stuff from small town life. And I liked how the Police were so thoughtful of her and took her advice and wanted to protect her. 
Persuasion by Jane Austin (audiobook) not my favorite Austin. Reinforced by listening to it.
Mrs. McGinty's Dead by Agatha Christie (library) In this one, Poirot is sooo fastidious. It really is almost comic relief how he is concerned about his meals and cleanliness. 
The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware (library) I enjoyed this thriller about a tarot card reader who finds out that she may be heir to a fortune. 
The Cork Boat by John Pollack  Fun, fun book a true story about a guy who builds a boat out of wine corks. He eventually rows/sails it down the Douro River in Portugal! 
In the Shadow of the Mountain by Silvia Vasquez-Lavado (library) If you liked Wild, you will probably like this. It is the story of a lady from Peru, who overcame abuse to climb Mount Everest and now she helps others do the same thing. I liked it better than Wild really. 
Destination Unknown by Agatha Christie not so much a murder mystery as a spy thriller. 
A Talent for Murder by Andrew Wilson (library) so this book has Agatha Christie as a character. It reimagines her disappearance as a blackmail scheme to have her commit a murder. 
The Iron Giant by Ted Hughes (library) He wrote this story after Sylvia Plath died. 
The Underdog and other stories by Agatha Christie (library) such great vocabulary words in all her books really, but here are some from these stories: maladroit, quiescent, perturbation, stentorian, felicitate, and irradiated. 
The Lying Tongue by Andrew Wilson (library) interesting thriller set in Venice. Lots of great atmosphere
By the Pricking of My Thumbs by Agatha Christie another Tommy and Tuppence one (I love these) and this one is one of my all time favorites. 
Halloween Party by Agatha Christie I love it when Poirot is paired with Ariadne Oliver. This is supposedly going to be the basis of the next Kenneth Branagh Poirot film. 
Murder with Mirrors by Agatha Christie (I am getting kind of frantic to finish all the Christies before the end of the year. I have so many yet to read!!)  This one all hinges on Carrie Louise and why would anyone want to murder her? 
They Came to Baghdad by Agatha Christie I was kind of dreading reading this one as I just read it a year or two ago and I thought I did not like it then, but on rereading now, after reading so many Christies, I liked it! I thought it was a fun thriller with a fun heroine. 
Olive Again by Elizabeth Strout (library) The sequel to Olive Kitterage

Monday, October 31, 2022

Aviation Postcards: The Lighter Side

 A selection of arty and comedy postcards

And for a funny movie about flight attendants, I recommend View From the Top