I’d hate to see her PMSing

“Should your naughty new neighbors resist your suggestions, invite them over to see your new media room. The fact that it doubles as a torture chamber should encourage them to toe the line!”

-Josie Brown, The Housewife Assassin’s Handbook

Killer quote, don’t you think?

Each chapter starts out with a lovely assassin tidbit.  It fit the book perfectly.

The first chapter had me questioning if I was going to enjoy the book.  It didn’t flow right to me, so I had trouble focusing on it.  Once past the first chapter, I was enjoying the book and trying to figure out the twists and turns.  It got kind of stressful when I realized I didn’t know who was actually on what team, despite my thinking ahead, but that was quickly resolved.  From there on out, it was an enjoyable read once more.

The story is told from Donna’s POV.  Donna, housewife turned assassin, wife turned lover turned wife turned lover turned lover?  Just go with it.  She’s complicated and human, but that just makes the book come alive more to the reader.

This is book one of the series.  I’m not sucked in the series, but if I happen to chance upon more in the series, I’d read them.

The Housewife Assassin’s Handbook by Josie Brown

BN link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/housewife-assassins-handbook-josie-brown/1101133270?ean=2940012412539

Goodread link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11393698-the-housewife-assassin-s-handbook


Truly alone

“Enola spelled backwards is alone.” – Nancy Springer, The Case of the Cryptic Crinoline

I gave myself a break from WWII and listened to a fun mystery.  It was as fun as I had hoped.

The Case of the Cryptic Crinoline by Nancy Springer is book #5 in the Enola Holmes series.  I was a HUGE fan of The Boxcar Children series as a chlid, so a child solves a mystery premise was right up my alley.

Enola Holmes is the (much) younger sister of the great world detective, Sherlock Holmes.  Once her landlady is kidnapped, Enola is now very much alone in the world.  Her mother has disappeared and she’s run away from her brother to avoid boarding school.  Mrs. Tupper was her companion in her young world of fourteen.  Enola sets her mind to finding Mrs. Tupper, during which you can see genius must run in the Holmes’ family.  You can see the fourteen year-old mind fight against much more mature insight and instincts.  I’m not sure I’d have that level of a head in my thirties as Enola does at fourteen.  Actually, I know I wouldn’t.  My mom stepped on a piece of broken glass one time, and my stepfather joked he thought her foot was cut off by the way I described it.  Calmness isn’t something I embody, but Enola does repeatedly..

Until she’s about to be busted by her brother.  What teenager wouldn’t freak out then?

This was a delightful story.  I hope to introduce this series to my children one day.  I left this audiobook in my file to listen to again later.  I was sad when it ended, but I can repeat again later as desired.  Any story/book that makes me think that is a great book.  This is highly recommended for a fun break.

The Case of the Cryptic Crinoline by Nancy Springer
Narrator: Katherine Kellgren
Format: MP3 Audiobook
Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC
Source: Audiobook Sync
3 parts, 14 chapters
3 hours 8 minutes 51 seconds

Link for (physical) book purchase through Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/case-of-the-cryptic-crinoline-nancy-springer/1100170425?ean=9780399247811

Lost in audio Confessions

Thanks to a random article I came across only Lord knows how, I’ve signed up to download 2 free audiobooks a week through Audiobook Sync (http://www.audiobooksync.com/) and  Overdrive Media console.  Unfortunately, I don’t get to pick the downloads, but it is a change from music nonetheless.

The first book I listed to was Confessions of a Murder Suspect: Confessions Series, Book 1, by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro, narrated by Emma Galvin.  This one had the most potential of being a book I’d like after scanning the synopses.  Admittedly, I had some trouble getting hooked.  I was listening during work during one of our busiest times of the year and learning as necessary how to work the program.  I just couldn’t get sucked in and I kept getting lost as to where I was in the book, so I gave myself a break.

After a day or two break, I tried again with better success.  I was no longer fumbling with the program which helped immensely.  After hearing part of it already, I was better able to follow what was happening and who the characters were as the story began.  This also helped me get interested in this book.

The story is told from a teenage girl, Tandy Angel, as she and her siblings try to solve a murder.  The victims?  Their parents.  The suspects?  Tandy Angel and ALL her siblings, from her oldest brother, a pro football player, to her youngest brother, a boy of about 5-8.

While I admit everyone’s family has their share of secrets and is messed up in different ways, the Angel family seemed to take leaps beyond that.   As the story progresses, you learn not only how messed up the parents were, but who all is involved and to what extent.  The neighbors aren’t exactly normal either.  Every character with any depth is messed up, it’s just a matter of to what degree.

It took about halfway through the story before I got really interested in it.  Until that point, I was following it, but it was merely background noise with a plot instead of harmony and high notes.  You go with Tandy from her home to jail to dealing with her uncle to fighting herself and dealing with her past.  The more she learns, the more you are drawn in, mainly because each new step leads to a “What the heck” moment.  Each new discover just added to the “they deserved to be slapped” factor, which eventually builds to “someone needs their rear kicked, stomped, and buried.”  You feel sorry for Tandy, but at the same time you feel as if she’s alien.  You can connect with forbidden love and teenage angst, but you cannot connect your family drama to hers (at least, I hope you can’t.  If you can, God bless you).  I felt like I was hearing about a rich freak show, and I was the sole audience member.

Right at the end, I ABSOLUTELY had to know how it ended.  I completely stopped working the last 15 minutes so that my typing wouldn’t interfere with the story.  And then you find out who the guilty one is…

I had to pause it and listen to it again, just to make sure I heard it correctly.  For the record, I did.

I didn’t expect the actual killer at all.  I didn’t have a clear suspect in mind, but certainly not that in any way, shape, or form.  I find that refreshing and shocking, and yet it irked me a little because I wanted to outsmart the book.  But WOW, what an ending.  Just WOW.

That being said, while I have no desires to listen to it again, it was worth the listen.  I would be willing to read it one day or read others by them.  It isn’t among my favorites, but it was interesting.  I deem it worthy of my time and attention.


General information:
6:04:50 long
87 chapers (85 + 2 epilogues), divided into 5 parts