I haven't had a book round-up for a while and I haven't updated my reading list over there on the right, either. Bad blogger.
So, since July (July!!!??? How did that happen??) here are some of the books that stood out for me.
The Taken - Inger Ash Wolfe - I still haven't a clue who this pseudonymous author is and, as long as she keeps putting out these mysteries, I don't care. I like her main character, a fifty-almost sixty year old female police chief. She may have personal problems, but she's a pretty tough old bird.
Noah's Compass - Anne Tyler - I found this to be one of Tyler's sadder books...but still, she makes you care so much about her characters that even when the story might not end the way you wanted, you're happy to have gotten to know everyone involved.
Faithful Place - Tana French - I think each one of French's books gets stronger and stronger. I liked this one a lot.
I'd Know You Anywhere - Laura Lippman - I enjoy Lippman's Tess Monaghan mysteries and yes, a lot of the reason I enjoy her books is because her old stomping grounds, that she writes about so well, are pretty darn close to, and overlapping, my old stomping grounds. But her stand-alone books are also really well written mysteries. This one centers on a woman who, as a young girl, was abducted by a serial killer...and who was the only young woman to survive. Now, just before the killer's execution, he is reaching out to her and trying, once again, to manipulate her.
Packing for Mars - Mary Roach - I'll buy anything Mary Roach writes. I think she could write about paint drying and I'd come away both chuckling and having learned something.
Winter's Bone - Daniel Woodrell - A bleak but mesmerizing peek at the life of Ree Dolly, a 16-year-old girl in the Ozarks, struggling to keep her family together and the bank from repossessing the family's home. Meth dealers, hard men and scarred women fill her life but she rises above them to fight for her home. Grim, but highly recommended.
Johannes Cabal the Necromancer - Jonathan L. Howard - What a romp! The author said he read Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes and wondered "Where do evil carnivals come from anyway?" In his book they come from a deal with the devil. Johannes Cabal isn't a good man, by any means, but he's gotten the Devil to agree to give his soul back if he can only capture one-hundred souls in the space of a year. What better way than by tempting people at a carnival?
I Shall Wear Midnight - Terry Pratchett - My love for Pratchett knows no bounds. This final (?) volume in the Tiffany Aching series is wonderfully satisfying.
So those are the best of the books I read in the past three months or so. The worst? Would have to be The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas...full of unpleasant people. What a waste of time.