And it keeps getting worse…


HurricaneTrack Matthew Discussion

Not liking this AT ALL.  And it seems I’m not the only one skeptical about this storm’s forecast strength.  Hurricanes don’t usually maintain Category 5 status for long, so if it is one midway up the east coast of Florida, then would, most likely, be a four or, if we’re really lucky, a strong three by the time it comes ashore close to Cape Fear.  Not good.

Hurricane Matthew Forecast Tracks

I live in North Carolina, not the northeast, but this is the best channel I’ve found for me to see the latest model runs. At the time he posted this video, the latest European model hadn’t been released, yet. But of the two models discussed, I must say I prefer the UKMET (sorry, Florida) because Matthew would be almost guaranteed to be a tropical storm by the time it got up here. The weaker, the better. Either way, we’ll be getting a crap ton of rain, which we DO NOT NEED. Heck, two of our rivers have flooded within the last couple of weeks.

Here’s another one with a more detailed discussion of the GFS model run:

Looking at the just released 5am update from the National Hurricane Center, Matthew is forecast to come onshore just to the west of Cape Lookout in Carteret County late Saturday night as a Category 2 storm with 100 mph winds, then move northeast along the southern Outer Banks, exiting just north of Cape Hatteras in the wee hours of Sunday morning. I’m not sure I buy that much weakening, frankly. On this track, my area would experience tropical storm conditions.

085025w_sm_nhcmatt-5am_10-04BTW, the stats say the storm is moving north at 9 mph, but the satellite loops I’m seeing this morning look to me like it’s moving northeast or north-northeast.

September Reads 2016

rosen_dressWell, I started off the month with a quick re-read of A Breath of Fresh Air by Amulya Malladi. I just couldn’t resist. And, yes, I cried. Again. I think this the fourth time I read this book and it always ends with me in tears. And wanting to beat Prakash into a bloody pulp.

Next I dived into Nine Women, One Dress by Jane L. Rosen. This was a fun read about the little black dress of the season from its creation, to its runway debut, through its life at Bloomingdale’s and beyond. And it’s about the nine women who wear it. All of the romances were predictable from the start and the adultery thing easy to figure out, but it remained a delightful little book. Though, maybe it’s because I live in the rural South, but the “cow in a cotton field” had me blinking at the page a few times, going “Why would a cow be in a cotton field?”🙂

robb_apprenticeNext was the new Eve and Roarke! Forty-four books and they still haven’t gotten old. Even when the case is a little ho-hum, which this one isn’t, the characters make this series fun and addictive. I really wanted Eve, or Roarke, to kick Mackie’s Dr. Frankenstein wannabe ass. I know Eve did, metaphorically, but, though I enjoy a good metaphor, it doesn’t beat a fist in the face. Or knee to something more painful. One thing’s for sure, Omega has got to be an interesting place with both Rayleen and Will there. Fun times.

scot_macleanAfter that, I went on a bit of romance kick. First up, Sarah MacLean’s latest A Scot in the Dark. I liked Lillian quite a bit more than I did Sophie. She didn’t seem to have as big a case of RHIS (Romance Heroine Idiotic Syndrome). After the loneliness and neglect of her adolescence, it is understandable that she would fall for the first man, heck first person, to pay any attention to her at all. So what idiocy she does display, the man was an obvious ass after all, is understandable. Alec’s is not. Why did her believe that bitch? I don’t get it. Even when his childhood is explained it still didn’t justify his stubborn belief in her insults. It was annoying. But a fun read, nonetheless. I’m quite looking forward to Serafina’s story. Although I’m not sure how Ms. MacLean means to rehabilitate Haven. From what I remember of The Rogue Not Taken, he was another obvious ass, magnified and enhanced by ducal arrogance.

noble_gambleIn her newsletter, MacLean mentioned her Romance recommendations page. Curious, I checked it out. A few titles jumped out at me. One of them was The Game and the Governess by Kate Noble. I’m sorry to say I can’t echo Ms. MacLean. I ended up dropping it due to annoyance with the airhead hero. I have problems with the Bet Trope to begin with, but add in a space cadet and it was just, “No.” To give credit where it’s due, this was different. Usually it’s the heroine who’s the idiot. There are some other books on the list that have gone onto my TBR wish list: The Year We Fell Down by Sarina Bowen, For Real by Alexis Hall, Rock ~N~ Soul by Lauren Sattersby, Soul Song by Marjorie M. Liu, and The Bollywood Bride by Sonali Dev to name just a few.

kleypas_cold-heartedI finished the month with the first book in Lisa Kleypas’s Ravenels series, Cold-Hearted Rake. If you’ll remember, I read, and enjoyed, the second book, Marrying Winterbourne in July. First, would someone explain to me why the woman on the cover is wearing pink? Kathleen was a widow in deep mourning. It should have been a woman in an elaborately ruched black gown, complete with bustle, wearing a gorgeous autumn colored shawl. Anyway… I quite enjoyed this book. I wanted to smack Devon upside the head for being obtuse, but that’s par for the course. The next book, Devil in Spring, will be Pandora’s. That should be interesting, but what I’m really looking forward to is West’s story.

Winnie-the-Pooh makes friends with a penguin to mark anniversary | Books | The Guardian

milne_90_bestbearNinety years after AA Milne’s first book about Christopher Robin’s bear, the much loved children’s character is returning with a new companion

Source: Winnie-the-Pooh makes friends with a penguin to mark anniversary | Books | The Guardian

Any other grown-ups looking forward to reading this? I LOVED Winnie-the-Pooh, and Tigger, too. And I still do. As I discovered a few years ago when my sister and her son, Brady, were visiting. Reading him The House at Pooh Corner brought back memories.  I wonder if Disney has bought the rights, yet?

LibraryReads October List

library_reads_logo_websiteLibraryReads has posted their October list.  Skimming the titles, there are several already on my TBR list.  I’m especially eager for Today Will Be Different by Maria Semple, one of my most anticipated books of the year.  Still don’t like the cover, though.  mothers_bennettThe Mothers by Brit Bennett, sounds really good.  The Motion of Puppets is also on my list.  It’s bound to be the perfect Halloween read.  Keith Donohue’s books are always wonderfully creepy without being full of gore.

I’m surprised to find I now want to read Connie Willis’s new one, Crosstalk.  She’s one of my sister’s authors.  I’ve never really gotten into her books, but this one sound like fun.  And I think I’m going to add their favorite, News of the World by Paulette Jiles.

The Language of Homer

The Iliad and The Odyssey are two of the most enduring works of fiction (or “fiction”, if you prefer) ever composed.  Although it is doubtful that they were composed in their entirety by a single individual, they are traditionally attributed to a blind bard called Homer.  Recently, The World According to Sound aired a podcast about the language in which these works were composed.  A form of ancient Greek that sounded nothing like its modern descendant.  According to this, this dialect was a tonal language.  An example of a modern tonal language is Chinese.

The story was picked up and, partially, rebroadcast, on NPR’s All Things ConsideredThe Sound Of Ancient Greek.



From Nalini Singh’s Weblog: Silver Silence

Yay!  I was hoping Silver would get the next book.  If the Architect of the Consortium manages to take out her grandmother, then Silver will be the new matriarch of the Mercants.  Whether or not the plot succeeds, he/she will incur the clan’s enmity.  And Silver’s.  As for her man, the first person to pop in my head was Malachi.

Other candidates:  Remi would be fun.  A lot of people are suggesting Bo, which would be interesting, but I really think he will end  up with Miane.    And I think Tanique will be with be with the girl they rescued in Allegiance of Honor.  Can’t remember her name off the top of my head.

Source: Nalini Singh’s Weblog: Silver Silence

Sally Bourden

Okay, yet another mystery woman has popped up in my Bourden research.  The following is a deed between Baker Bourden and John Watkins, dated September 9, 1815, and witnessed by Sally Bourden and Readin Bourden (Deed Book 5a, page 531):

This Indenture made this 9th day of September in the year of our Lord eighteen hundred and fifteen, Between Baker Bowden of the County of Duplin & State of North Carolina and John Watkins of the County & State above mentioned, Witnesseth, that I the said Baker Bowden for and in consideration of the sum of one hundred & eighty three dollars to him the said Baker Bowden in hand paid by the said John Watkins before the sealing & delivering of these presents, the receipt whereof he doth hereby acknowledge, hath given granted bargained and sold and doth hereby give grant bargain sell alien convey & confirm unto the said John Watkins his heirs or assigns forever, a certain tract or parcel of land situate lying & being in the County of Duplin on the head of Calf Pasture branch, on both sides of the main road & joining Wayne County line, Beginning at a pine & Black Jack Jacob Taylor’s corner, & runs along Reuben Johnston’s line Wt. 100 poles to a pine, thence No. 210 poles to a pine, thence Et. 100 poles to a pine on Jacob Taylor’s line by his corner, thence to the beginning, containing one hundred & twenty five acres be the same more or less, which said bargained lands & premises with all the improvements privileges or advantages to the same belonging or in anywise appertaining, I the said Baker Bourden do bind myself my heirs exers. or admns. to warrant secure & forever defend unto him the said John Watkins his heirs excrs. admins or assigns forever against all person or persons whatsoever.  In witness whereof I the said Baker Bourden have hereunto set my hand & affixed by seal this day & date above written.

Baker Bourden

Signed sealed acknowledged in presence of

Sally (her mark) Bourden
Readin Bourden

State of No. Carolina Duplin County, July Term 1816 –
Then was the within deed proved in Court by the oath of Sally Bourden & ordered to be registered.

Copy Th. Routledge, Esq.
Test, W. Dickson, C.C.

Who the heck is Sally Bourden?  Sally is probably short for Sarah.  Did Reading have another wife before he married Nancy?  Or did Mary Branch Bowden predecease her husband and Baker took a second wife?  Or she could be one of Baker and Mary’s daughters.  This is the first time I’ve come across this name.

August Reads 2016

SisQ_GregoryWell, this month started slow and, when I finally did find the time to pick up a book, Three Sisters, Three Queens by Philippa Gregory, I ended up dropping it in frustration.  With the heroine.  Margaret Tudor is one of the most idiotic female leads in a historical fiction novel not a bodice-ripper I’ve ever had the misfortune to come across on a page.  Complete airhead.  She can be having a serious conversation or thinking about her next political move, then, all of sudden, it’s all about jewels, or gowns, or whether or not her sister Mary or sister-in-law Katherine have more, or better, of either of these than her.  It’s annoying.  While enjoying the story, I just couldn’t take her stupidity any more.

Wild-Embrace_SinghNext, I picked up Nalini Singh’s new Psy-Changling anthology, Wild Embrace.  This one was fun.  Dorian was definitely my favorite story of the bunch.  I adored the little peeks into their cubhood and the scene with Lucas, when he finds out what happened, is priceless.  The one I liked the least was Kenji and Garnet’s story, Flirtation of Fate.  It was a good story, don’t get me wrong, but I still find I want to smack Kenji and am annoyed that Garnet didn’t do more of it.  I want more Desi and Felix and I really, really, really want to know how Aden, Judd, and Vasic found out about Stefan and Tazia.  Can we get a newsletter short story?  Please?

Luck_ReichertAfter I finished wallowing and sighing over Dorian, Felix, and Stefan, I, finally, opened Luck, Love and Lemon Pie by Amy E. Reichert.  This novel is about MJ and Chris Boudreaux, a couple who have been married for twenty years, have two teenagers, and have grown apart.  Each of them uses poker as an escape, building a seemingly unscalable wall between them.  Add in an old rival and a gorgeous Irishman and you have a whole lot of trouble.  All of which could, of course, have been prevented if MJ had just talked to her husband the way her friends advised her to do in the beginning.  While she made me want to roll my eyes at times, I still enjoyed the story.  Okay, I did roll my eyes.  And may have huffed out an annoyed sigh or two.  Or three.  But it was a fun read, for all that.  And, now, dang it, I want a fat slice of lemon pie.  Fortunately, I have a recipe for a really good one without the baking and without the guilt:  Simple Lemon Pie.

Mothers_MalladiThen, at last, I sat down with Amulya Malladi’s latest, The House for Happy Mothers (my full review). I’ve been looking forward to this since Malladi announced it on her blog last year.  I’ve read all of her books and especially loved A Breath of Fresh Air.  That one I’ve read more than once.  It makes me cry.  The House for Happy Mothers didn’t do that, but it’s still a poignant read.  I liked Asha and sympathized with her and the other women throughout.  Linden-Scandal-2What they do is a very difficult thing.  And, while I liked Madhu, it took me a while to really warm up to Priya.  Mostly because she was just so blind where Dr. Swati was concerned.

To end the month, I read It Takes a Scandal by Caroline Linden.  This the second book in her Scandalous series.  You have your brooding, tortured hero with Gothic overtones, including a mad father, and who’s still pained by wounds suffered at Waterloo and a nouveau riche heroine, who, surprisingly, is not an American.  And let us not forget the rather cartoonish villain and a mischievous little dog.  In other words, It Takes a Scandal was a romance novel cliche.  Not that a cliche can’t be entertaining if you’re in the right mood.  Which I wasn’t. This one just annoyed me.  I did a lot of exasperated eye rolling with this one.  I doubt I’ll read anything else in this series.