The Road from Home by David Kherdian. This book is an account of a young woman’s life during the Armenian Genocide. The story reads like a novel and would have flown by if my children hadn’t kept asking me to take a break because it was so sad. Veron, the main character, grows from pampered eldest daughter into a resilient survivor, and then into a young woman wanting to determine her own future. There is kindness here, and bravery. Worth the read for the character and for the story, not to mention for the history.
First Cut by Mary Birk. The second book in the Terrence Reid series, this thriller is broader in scope than the first. Reid’s character deepens, and the relationship between Reid and his wife flows at the same dramatic pace as the story. Read it with the lights on, though– it’s scary.
At Risk and The Front by Patricia Cornwell. These two are the start of a second series by Cornwell, and although I don’t like the characters as much as I like Kay Scarpetta, the narrative is fresh and immediate. The books are much shorter, and– so far– free of the serial killers that bogged down the later Scarpetta books. I liked them.
Black Notice by Patricia Cornwell. I’ve been reading the Scarpetta books completely out of order, and this one caught me completely off-guard, as at the beginning of the book one of the characters I really liked was dead. I kept waiting for Scarpetta to discover it was all a ruse or mistake, and that never happened, which I think was part of the point. The grief was very real. Cornwell does forensics so well, to the point that the dead speak, and this one was exceptionally vivid.
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place by Maryrose Wood. This book came recommended to me as “Jane Eyre without Mr. Rochester.” And as far one could describe Jane Eyre as a book about a young governess thrust into a house with secrets, that’s accurate. Unlike Jane Eyre, this is a YA or MG read-aloud without much emotional depth, and the end didn’t satisfy me. None of the questions posed were answered. My children, however, asked to begin the sequel immediately, which we’ve done. I have to give a shout to the illustrator- the drawings had a whimsy entirely suited to the book.
What the Bride Didn’t Know by Kelly Hunter. This is the third book of Hunter’s I’ve read, and they are all true to a traditional romance formula. Beyond that, though, her characters are fresh and bold, with real issues and backstories she paints so well. Her dialogue is brilliant, and I always come away feeling like I know the people I’ve just been reading about.