Spring Sprung Titles

What to say about April? I ran my fastest 10k while ill (go figure). I met two new runners and may have convinced someone to at least try. I don’t know where this acceptance to run with others is coming from. To share a conversation I had with someone: I asked where she runs. She replied she doesn’t have my pace, “nowhere near it” were her exact words. I answered I don’t have that pace all the time either. Me & my pace visit from time to time but we don’t make it a thing. She laughed and I saw myself ten years ago talking to someone who face-times with friends while running. I worried about her relationship with pace. But, this blog is turning into a thing different from reading.

So, without further ado, here are the finished books:


  • Diplomatic Lover by Elsie Lee – read in one day
  • Oxford Murders by Guillermo Martinez – read in two days
  • Celibate Season by Carol Shields and Blanche Howard – read in four days (this book annoyed me and I kept having to put it down)


  • Lost Upland: stories of the Dordogne Region by W.S. Merwin – confessional: DNF (bored, bored, bored)
  • Coming into the Country by John McPhee
  • Henry James: the Untried Years by Leon Edel
  • Another Part of the Wood by Kenneth Clark – this was cheeky!

Series continuations:

  • “F” is for Fugitive by Sue Grafton (I’m calling this a continuation even though I read “A” a long time ago.)
  • Rise of Endymion by Dan Simmons (AB + print so I could finish on time – today!)
  • Blue Lightning by Ann Cleeves – another quick read (finished in four days)

Early Review for LibraryThing:

  • My Life with Bob by Pamela Paul

Diplomatic Lover

Lee, Elsie. The Diplomatic Lover. New York: Zebra Books, 1971.

Reason read: Elsie Lee’s birth month is in April.

Confessional: this genre is not my cup of tea. I would say it’s even less so than science fiction or fantasy. I definitely was not looking forward to reading this genre. In fact, I squirmed so much I read it over the weekend. 4/1/17 – 4/2/17

Nonny is an oddball character. Early in Diplomatic Lover she convinces her roommate’s foster brother to take her to bed. She’s a virgin and she simply must have “lessons” from York, the outrageously handsome actor. The deflowering scene is nothing short of cringe-worthy if you are not into bodice rippers. But, Nonny (“Bambi” to the boys) got what she wanted from York: she needed to go from Nonny-no to Nonny-yes. What’s more, she then needs a fourteen day sailing adventure with York to “get him out of her system.” Do you think she succeeds? Insert eye roll here. After the loss of virginity and the sailing adventure are both out of the way, Nonny returns to a scandal at the office. Someone is leaking inside trader information and smuggling political information. As a translator for the British Embassy in Washington D.C. Nonny is brilliant and the perfect person to solve the mystery. She speaks a multitude of languages, including finances. She often gives her roommates advice on investments. In addition, her father is a New York City lawyer and her grandfather is a banker in Zurich. She only has one problem: blackmail. Someone knows of her torrid affair at sea and wants to expose her (literally).

Cringe worthy quote, “He was taking it at her pace, sticking to the rules of seduction, not rape” (p 80). Whaaa?

Book trivia: my copy of The Diplomatic Lover had to be rebound. The library adhered just the paperback’s old front cover to the new hard copy. And what a front cover it is! It features two very prominent stargazer lilies in the forefront and a couple locked in an odd embrace. She looks like she is about to swoon and he is ready to bite her ear off.

Author fact: Elsie Lee was a member of Mensa.

BookLust Twist: from Book Lust in the obvious chapter called “Romance Novels: Our Love is Here To Stay” (p 205).

April Snow Job

As we move into April I am not confident we won’t get another 26″ snow storm. If we ever joked in the past about not being able to predict the weather, now it is impossible. It’s no laughing matter. My rose bushes, right now struggling under the weight of frozen water, could tell you that. But never mind the weather. Let’s talk about the month of April. April is another 10k for cancer. I’m hoping to break the hour time since I was five seconds away in March. April is also Easter. April is my sister’s birth month. April is also books, books and more books…of course:


  • ‘F’ is For Fugitive by Sue Grafton ~ in honor of Grafton’s birth month. Technically, I should have read all the “alphabet” books by Grafton one right after the other, but I didn’t have that system when I read “A” is for Alibi. I think it goes without saying I do now.
  • The Diplomatic Lover by Elsie Lee ~ in honor of Lee’s birth month. I am not looking forward to this one even though it looks like a quick read.
  • A Celibate Season by Carol Shields ~ in honor of April being Letter Writing Month. This is so short I should be able to read it in one sitting.


  • Henry James: the Untried Years (1843 – 1870) by Leon Edel ~ in honor of James’s birth month. This first volume chronicles James’s childhood and youth.
  • Coming into the Country by John McPhee ~ in honor of the Alaska trip I’m taking in August.

Series continuations:

  • The Rise of Endymion by Dan Simmons ~ this is to finish the series started in January, in honor of Science Fiction month. I liked Endymion the best so I have high hopes for The Rise of Endymion. I am listening to this on audio and reading the print because I know I will never finish the 575+ pages by April 30th.
  • Blue Lightning by Ann Cleeves ~ this is to finish the series started in January, in honor of Shetland’s fire festival, Up Helly Aa. This is another one I should be able to finish in a day or two.

Early Review for LibraryThing:

  • My Life with Bob by Pamela Paul

Extra (for fun):

  • Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara- ~ my sister sent this in my belated birthday package. Whatever she recommends I usually end up liking whether it be music or books. For those of you who really know me – I know what you’re thinking. Yes, my birthday was in February. I got the birthday package over a month later. It’s what we do.

If there is time (since three books are really, really short):

  • Another Part of the Wood by Kenneth Clark ~ in honor of National Library Week
  • The Oxford Murders by Guillermo Martinez ~ in honor of April’s Mathematics, Science and Technology Week
  • Lost Upland by WS Merwin ~ in honor of well, you know the song…April in Paris. Cheesy, I know.