Tag Archive | Australia

Death by Didgeridoo… a book review

Ok ok, after doing a MAJOR 3 month unit on Australia with the kids and learning about all things Down Under I could not resist this novella based strictly on the title. Death by Didgeridoo is the first book in the Jamie Quinn Mystery series by Barbara Venkataraman and has nothing else to do with Australia than the instrument being, well, instrumental in the murder. (bad bad I know).

I will say right off the bat… in the book no one knows what a Didgeridoo is, well I am telling you EVERYONE in this house knows what one is! For those who don’t, HERE is the Wikipedia page for you to catch up on! Anyway…

I found this novella interesting as the main character – Jamie Quinn, a rather reluctant but proficient family court lawyer is called up by her aunt to come support her nephew who has stumbled upon a murder and is now a suspect. What is interesting is that the nephew is a grown adult who has Asperger Syndrome. This throws the wrench in things as he is unable, at first, to explain what he saw and rationalize that he was not truly involved in the murder.

Jamie is determined to help, calls upon her friend (also a lawyer but in a different division) for help, calls up an IOU on a rather interesting detective and works with the court appointed defense lawyer to ensure that her nephew is not falsely arrested.

The mystery is intriguing, and Jamie gives us little insights about her personality as SHE thinks they are relevant, so you do get to know her as the story goes on. I found this a quick and fun read, it felt like you were sitting with Jamie as she recounted an event that was interesting and exciting in her life.

While not a book SET in Australia, the murder weapon IS unique and the author tells a wonderful story, so if this interests you do give it a read!21899943

Carbon Copy Cowboy… A Book Review

Now you would think I would learn my lesson about NOT judging a book by its cover… In fact, one of our Australian facts found recently was that there is a bookstore that has special books wrapped in brown paper with just the genres listed for just that very reason. (Elizabeth’s Bookshops) Yet when I go to the library and have to manage the kids at “library voices” levels… well a quick title read and a brief glance at the cover and then move on. That was what Carbon Copy Cowboy was (add in the series title – Texas Twins). 

Now I realize that I cannot expect too much… first off, I am never sure that if they ARE in a series they are first book (NOPE… book 3!), that I am going to love all the characters (well so so) or that I will even be completely drawn into the book… Carbon Copy Cowboy by Arlene James was a relatively quick and light read. The overlying issue of the story – about the history of the main family, was never answered… annoyingly enough. I WAS able to understand somewhat what had occurred in the previous two books, enough so that blanks are filled in relatively nicely over all. 

The main issue of the book that WAS answered was the identity of the woman found in her car with a bridal veil on of all things post accident with amnesia. This did wrap up a lot of questions through out the story. (very tidy in some respects). The romance is an interesting one, what with one person (“Kendra”) not even knowing if she had a family etc. that were waiting for her. The other half (Jack Colby) has his own unknowns… though his are all centered around his mother in a coma. She has all the answers and he has all the questions… including why he and his sister are actually each half of a set of identical twins who knew nothing about the other.

There are quite a few characters in this book. Of course, starting with the first in the series would have simplified that more than a little! But I think you CAN pick this one up without the others and still get by nicely. All in all an enjoyable read, I am unsure if I will make the effort to hunt down the rest (before and after) of the series. These Love Inspired paperbacks can be as hard to find in the system as a pure Harlequin. (not that I look often!) So if you need something set in Texas with twins and mystery and romance… all in a contemporary setting ON A RANCH… AND with a faith aspect to it.. go for it! Though I have to warn you, this book is FULL of prayer moments. So if that is not your cup of tea….13548084

Hounded… a Book Review

From a light Australian romance to a humourous and super interesting first in a chronicles book about an extremely (try 2,100 years) long lived Druid in modern day USA. This book is full of wonderful characters, action, humour, paranormal, magic, did I mention humour, because I really LOVED that part of this book.

Hounded by Kevin Hearne is the first in The Iron Druid Chronicles and most certainly will NOT be the last one I read in this series. From the main character (and our narrator and view point the whole story through) the Druid Atticus O’Sullivan (at least that is the name he goes by now) to his dog Oberon (who is beyond a hoot and a half) to his werewolf and vampire legal team… oh I could just go on and on… a human widow (Irish and long lived) who made me laugh from the first meeting on… gods that you are not sure if you should love or hate… OH and everyone hates Thor… I mean EVERYONE! (not the same as movie Thor, apparently the different versions/incarnations of the gods etc exist in different places… belief/power/etc determines that)

All for the want of a sword… that is that everyone has a different opinion as to whether or not Atticus should keep hold of the one he has. With old adversaries blending with new and those on his side at times even questionable, Atticus is constantly sharing a bit of his past here, a thought there, a joke always and his love for his pet Oberon… eternal.

I don’t know that I can sing the praises of this story loudly enough. There is lively discussion about various deities… a lovely bit of a history lesson, characters that seem so real you feel like you just need to get to the place and meet them for yourself. Granted, there is some sexuality (goddesses are traditionally quite naked it seems and so many of the pantheons are full of sex and gore), definitely a bit of gore (for really a Celtic Druid with an insanely important sword… duh), but so much humour and such a well told story! I cannot wait to get my hands on the second one! hounded-9781441870001-lg