Glass Houses by Louise Penny – Audio Edition

Posted by on Feb 23, 2018 in 2018, 4.5 stars, Audio, Book Review, Louise Penny | 2 comments

Glass Houses by Louise Penny narrated by Robert BathurstGlass Houses by Louise Penny narrated by Robert Bathurst

Genre: Mystery
Format: Audiobook
Series: #13 in the Armand Gamache (Three Pines) series
Publisher: MacMillan Audio
Publication Date: 2016
Length: 13 hours, 37 minutes
Source: Purchased

The Book:
From the publisher:

When a mysterious figure appears in Three Pines one cold November day, Armand Gamache and the rest of the villagers are at first curious. Then wary. Through rain and sleet, the figure stands unmoving, staring ahead.

From the moment its shadow falls over the village, Gamache, now Chief Superintendent of the Sûreté du Québec, suspects the creature has deep roots and a dark purpose. Yet he does nothing. What can he do? Only watch and wait. And hope his mounting fears are not realized.

But when the figure vanishes overnight and a body is discovered, it falls to Gamache to discover if a debt has been paid or levied.

Months later, on a steamy July day as the trial for the accused begins in Montréal, Chief Superintendent Gamache continues to struggle with actions he set in motion that bitter November, from which there is no going back. More than the accused is on trial. Gamache’s own conscience is standing in judgment.

In Glass Houses, her latest utterly gripping audiobook, number-one New York Times bestselling author Louise Penny shatters the conventions of the crime novel to explore what Gandhi called the court of conscience. A court that supersedes all others.

My Thoughts:
I’m still listening to this series at book 13 so obviously, I think it’s a good series. I’ve never read the print editions. The audios narrated by Ralph Cosham until his death after book ten and Robert Bathurst since then are wonderful.

This one starts near the end of the story and then moves back to the beginning and alternates timelines the rest of the way. You don’t find out who has been murdered until partway through the book. It’s difficult to say much more about the plot without giving away too much.

It’s difficult to write a mystery series set at least much of the time in a small village without getting repetitive. Somehow this one is yet a different type of story than others in the series. Yes, there are things that are familiar from other books because the supporting cast is involved.

Robert Bathurst is an excellent narrator and now that I’ve listened to three books he’s narrated he’s managed to feel like the right voice for the series just as much as Ralph Cosham did until he passed away. The audio edition I listened to included a conversation between Louise Penny and Robert Bathurst. What I found interesting is that she’s never listened to the books and he completely understood that it would interfere with her creations of the characters to do so.

These books can work as standalones but you’ll understand the ongoing stories if you start from the beginning with Still Life.

4.5 stars 4.5/5 for the book

4.5 stars 4.5/5 for the narration

Read More

It’s Monday What Are You Reading #97

Posted by on Feb 19, 2018 in Blogging/Reading, What Are You Reading? | 8 comments

Monday What Are You Reading #90

It’s Monday What Are You Reading? is a weekly reading roundup is hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

This is technically a weekly meme but I don’t read fast enough to make that worthwhile so I post it every two or three weeks.

Finished in Print

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Illustrated edition by J.K. Rowling with art by Jim Kay

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban Illustrated edition

Ever since they’ve been releasing these illustrated editions I’ve made a tradition of reading the new one at the beginning of the year. The artwork is gorgeous and it’s always good to reread Harry Potter.


Lady Killer Vol. 2 by Joelle Jones

Lady Killer Vol. 2 by Joelle Jones

This is the second volume in a comic series featuring a picture perfect early 1960’s housewife who just happens to be a contract killer. It’s a blast.


Blizzard of Glass by Sally M Walker

Blizzard of Glass by Sally M Walker

This is an interesting middle grade book that is just as interesting for adults. It’s about a devastating explosion in Halifax Harbor in 1917.


Continued in Print

Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman by Robert K. Massie

Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman by Robert K. Massie

I have read and loved Robert K. Massie’s books about Peter the Great and also Nicholas and Alexandra. I bought this biography of Catherine the Great years ago. I’m enjoying it so far.


Finished on Audio

Glass Houses by Louise Penny narrated by Robert Bathurst

Glass Houses by Louise Penny narrated by Robert Bathurst

I’ve been a fan of this series from Louise Penny since the first book. It’s series I stick to listening to rather than reading.


Started on Audio

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith narrated by Robert Glenister

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith narrated by Robert Glenister

I liked the first book in the Cormoran Strike series I bought the next two audiobooks before I even finished it.


Reviews since my last update:

Binti: The Night Masquerade by Nnedi Okorafor

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Illustrated Edition) buy J.K Rowling

Lady Killer Vol. 2 by Joelle Jones

Blizzard of Glass by Sally M. Walker

What are you reading?

Read More

Weekend Update – Things I Liked This Week – February 2018

Posted by on Feb 18, 2018 in Fun, The Things I Liked This Week, Weekend Update | 4 comments

The Things I Liked This Week January 2018

The Things I Liked This Week January 2018

I started doing The Things I Liked This Week in June of 2015 and it’s definitely become my favorite monthly post. I love adding to my list throughout the week.

Here are the things I liked this week:

1. These cats


2. Fiona the hipoo
The Cincinnati Zoo posted a video this week of some never before posted video from when Fiona was little. It’s predictably adorable.


3. Our Valentine’s Day tradition
Every year we get some Moonstruck chocolates, something bubbly to drink and watch our wedding video.
Valentine's Day Chocolates and Proseco


4. This is so true
My brain at night


5. This is too
Flu season


6. Brilliant ideas


Hope you’re having a great weekend!

Read More

Blizzard of Glass by Sally M. Walker

Posted by on Feb 16, 2018 in 2018, 4 stars, Book Review, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Blizzard of Glass by Sally M Walkerby Sally M Walker

Genre: Middle Grade Nonfiction
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Henry Holt
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 145

The Book:
From the publisher:

On December 6, 1917, two ships collided in Halifax Harbor in Nova Scotia, Canada. One ship was loaded top to bottom with munitions and the other held relief supplies, both intended for war-torn Europe. The resulting blast flattened two towns, Halifax and Dartmouth, and killed nearly 2,000 people. As if that wasn’t devastating enough, a blizzard hit the next day, dumping more than a foot of snow on the area and paralyzing much-needed relief efforts.
Fascinating, edge-of-your-seat storytelling based on original source material conveys this harrowing account of tragedy and recovery.

My Thoughts:
I learned about this book from a friend in my LibraryThing group. I vaguely remember hearing about the Halifax Explosion at some point but I really didn’t remember any details, so I picked this up at the library.

It’s a middle grade book but it’s an good read for adults too. There were only a couple of places where she’s explaining terminology that reminded me that this was a book intended for a 10-14 year old audience.

The book is fascinating. Walters sets the scene and introduces several families who will be impacted by the disaster. The story of how the ships ended up colliding, the actual explosion and the aftermath were all well done.

The immediate aftermath focuses much on the children in the families she features. many of whom were in the age range of her audience.

What surprised me was how quickly the city leaders got organized and began search and rescue as well as treating the wounded and managing the dead. An interesting note was that Halifax had experience in dealing with large numbers of dead because the bodies that were recovered from the Titanic disaster 5 years earlier had been taken there.

Other interesting things:
Many people thought that the Germans had attacked.
Lots of people were watching the fire after the ships collided so when the blast happened there were large numbers of eye injuries when the windows they were watching through blew in.
People were thrown by the blast and many babies were gathered in one place until they could be identified by surviving family members.
The blizzard that dumped snow on the are the day after the explosion hampered the rescue and recovery efforts.
Within hours of the explosion the city of Boston was organizing relief efforts and sending a train with supplies and medical personnel.

This is an interesting book about an incident I had heard of but didn’t know a lot about. I might seek out a more comprehensive book aimed at adults about this event.

I’d recommend this one even if you aren’t the target age range.

4 stars Rating 4/5

Read More