Award Winning Fantasy with a Twist!

A Mixed Bag for Christmas

One of the beauty of books is that there is so much variety out there. Even if you stick to your favorites, you’re bound to find something entertaining. But why limit yourself? Even if the book isn’t exactly to your taste, think of all the new and different you may find. Books have all the possibilities and excitement of unopened presents!

Here are some recommendations from my last round of reads:

In the spirit of the season, Holiday Heroine, Book 6 of the Heroine Complex series by Sarah Kuhn, follows the adventures of little sister Bea Tanaka as she tries to celebrate Christmas without upsetting her pregnant sister or openly missing her long-distance boyfriend. Not an unusual holiday for many, but add in that Bea’s sisters are superheroes battling monsters that Bea may or may not be conjuring up and you get not-exactly the action packed adventures of previous installments. This story is more internal and emotive with much of the action taking place in Bea’s mind as she experiences time jumps that no one else remembers. An excellent story nonetheless if out of the usual vein of superheroes and a really excellent trip down memory lane for anyone who’s ever lived, visited, or eaten in the Islands! Forget turkey and gingerbread – go plate lunches and malasadas!

Sarah’s short, Unsung Heroine, is now out on Kindle and on my holiday reading list!

Scarlet Fever by Rita Mae Brown is another story of Jefferson Hunt Club. Once you get past the idea of hunting foxes (not at all the same in Virginia as in England), then the adventures of the foxes, hounds, people, and other assorted characters are an entertaining tangle of encounters. However, one member of the Hunt Club is behaving erratically and is eventually found dead.The mystery and its resolution are a tragic commentary on elder abuse except for one little discrepancy. Polite Southern women really aren’t. They would have been nosing around, asking questions, and recommending doctors, pastors, and other options from the beginning. Maybe not in Virginia, but anywhere else south of the Mason-Dixon line, the murder would more likely be helpful overkill.

Speaking of manners, Moving Is Murder by Sara Rosett explores the intricacies of military life for families. New mom and Army wife Ellie Avery is happy to be living off base only to find she’s still surrounded by her husband’s squadron and their wives. Then one turns up dead. A fun series with lots of great moving tips that goes on my always good read list.

And speaking of always good reads, I splurged on Jenn McKinlay’s Hat Shop Mystery series. I’ve regularly read her Library Lovers and Cupcake Bakery Mysteries, but the Hat Shop books stand out. 

It might be because they’re set in London, it might be because they deal with a quintessential British phenomena, but mostly it’s because her main character solves one of the chief problems with cozy mysteries and I’m not talking about the body. One of the main problems with mysteries is that the main character is focused on solving the crime so the thoughts and actions that make them real people sometimes get lost. After awhile, the butcher, baker, candlestick maker all seem interchangeable except for the perennial question of why dead bodies keep showing up in butcher, bakery, and candlestick shops! But Scarlett Parker ended up in the hat shop because she created a scandal on social media, flirts routinely, and is a loud, boisterous American in reserved, upper crust England. She stands out at every party which could be why she keeps tripping over bodies. It makes sense. Next book, Fatal Fascinator, is due out in January!

Really random reviews – 

Pay The Ghost – Horror movie that starts off promisingly with the shock and anguish of a missing child, then devolves into tediously convenient explication about halfway through that takes away all the mystery and leaves Nicholas Cage going through the motions of predictable rescue. Not a thriller.

Winchester – a movie even Helen Mirren couldn’t save. All wrong from the doctor who tells women that their fears are only in their head (yeah, because the 18th century was a really supportive time for women) to the Civil War vet who wants revenge (the repeating rifle was invented in 1886 – after the war). Sarah Winchester is an interesting lady, a good example of the lengths proper ladies had to go to in those days to pursue their interests, but the only fun part of this movie is hearing the same screech Helen makes when she’s playing insane in Red.

Little Debbie now makes ice cream and it’s not bad. Not as strictly organic ingredients as Ben & Jerry, there’s the tiniest hint of extract, but still pleasant mouth feel and lovely tastes! You gotta have Pumpkin Delights at the holidays (somebody else swiped the B&J Pumpkin Cheesecake at Walmart before me).

Have a very merry holiday with all the treats you love!

2 comments on “A Mixed Bag for Christmas

  1. leer95621
    December 18, 2022

    Yes, whenever I went to her house she was in her nose was in a book. I just want them to her by our face in a book she wrote. She read every single book in the closest library, found the children’s library read every single book there, where every single book in the school library has read books for entire life has Right written Novello involving two small books and two books involving leprechauns. I have to pull her up on my list of Amazon books, but Kathy Bryson has written a variety of books, fun short reads Geo goes to MEDICAL‘s very short book zombies in the morgue where he works very morbid but the front of her head. Her brother did an audiobook for one of them. it’s quite entertaining and the leprechaun book is great. I told him why haven’t you taken a trip to Ireland to really do research on it she’s stuck in Texas. She’s actually the Director of the tutoring center in Texas at the college. She works at a junior college so when Texas got flooded they close the campus she got stuck. I was going to send her a package to the school and she’s like why does she need chocolate cause she asked for chocolate for survival kit so she’s now got a survival kit in her car that includes personal items and change clothes leaving Florida I don’t think she thought the weather was gonna be the way it is in Texas her do you have her brothers both younger and her little younger sister I’ll work in Texas, so I’ll live in work in Texas has younger sister is a city manager, his work city manager in quite a few places, so that’s what she’s doing in Texas. Her husband was working at KB toys until they went under. I think her younger brother I think it’s the one that does IT stuff I don’t think the oldest young but she’s got three younger brothers if I remember correct and one younger sister she has it has a younger so I have a sister he goes to UC Davis last I heard she’s got a big and a family. I don’t know how many cousins she has but probably enough and they’re probably all in Texas. I don’t know her dad still in California

    Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone

    • kathybryson
      December 20, 2022

      Oh, thank you, Lee! Always good to hear from an old friend!

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