Tuesday Top Ten

top ten movie

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish. Book bloggers create their own lists based on the chosen topics and post links to our lists. It’s a way of all sharing our thoughts and our love of books.  And who doesn’t love lists??

So this week’s challenge was to list the books that we would love to see as a movie or TV series, assuming that it was done well!

  1. Book Thief by Markus Zusak – This is actually going to be a movie coming to theaters on November 15!  I’m a little nervous, hoping that they will do the book justice, but I can’t wait to see it!
  2. Inspector Gamache Series by Louise Penny – Another favorite that is about to hit the screen and is making me keep my fingers crossed!
  3. Commissario Guido Brunetti Series by Donna Leon – I would love to see this character come to life, and the setting of Venice would be wonderful!
  4. Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman – Done right, this would make a great movie – touching and horrifying!
  5. Mr. Penumbra’s 24 Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan – I would love to see these quirky characters come to life, and a quest full of intrigue, history, and technology would make a great movie!
  6. The Giver by Lois Lowry – There has been talk about this becoming a movie for years now, and it looks like it’s finally going to happen…
  7. Artemis Fowl series by Eoin Colfer – There have been rumors around this series becoming movies for a long time, but hopefully they will finally bring this evil boy genius and the world of fairies to the big screen!
  8. Thieves of Book Row by Travis McDade – This non-fiction historical book could be made into a really interesting historical drama.
  9. The Spellman Series by Lisa Lutz – This wacky set of characters would make for a great comedy/drama with some romantic tension thrown in!
  10. Spenser Series by Robert B. Parker – OK, I know this was a TV series in the 70s but it seriously needs to be redone!  Less corny and without cutting out all the swearing and politically incorrect conversations!




Mystery Mayhem

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a fan of a good (and even some not-so-good) mysteries.  I thought I’d share some quick thoughts on what’s new this spring in some of my favorite series.

goldeneggIn the most recent installment of the Commissario Guido Brunetti Mysteries by Donna Leon, Brunetti’s wife is concerned about the suicide of a deaf and mentally handicapped man working at their drycleaner’s.  As Brunetti begins to investigate he can find no record of the man every having existed, the man’s mother refuses to speak with the police, and the whole affair seems to be connected to one of Venice’s wealthy and powerful families.  In typical Brunetti style, he navigates through a web of politics and misinformation to get at the truth, even if there is nothing he can do about it…  For more of my thoughts on the Brunetti mysteries, check out my review of Uniform Justice.

Title: Golden Egg
Author: Donna Leon
Genre: Fiction/Mystery
Pages: 256
Publication: Atlantic Monthly Press, March 2013

deadwhiteandblueThe Death on Demand mysteries take place on Broward’s Rock, an island in South Carolina, where Annie Darling owns the mystery bookstore (Death on Demand) and her husband Max runs “Confidential Commissions” (not an investigative agency since he doesn’t have his PI license).  In this newest book in the series, Shell Hurst disappears during a Fourth of July dance.  Shell is beautiful and haughty, the type of woman hated by other women, and loved by most of their men.  Where has she gone and what happened to her?  And why does no one seem to care? Who’s to blame?  The husband she’s cheating on, his jealous ex-wife, his unhappy son, the man she is having an affair with, his ill wife, one of the other people she has managed to cross? As always, Annie and Max dash in to figure it out.  Nothing extraordinary here, but a fun visit to familiar characters and visions of warm weather and sandy beaches.

Title: Dead, White, and Blue
Author: Carolyn Hart
Genre: Fiction/Mystery
Pages: 288
Publication:Berkley Hardcover, May 2013

silkenpreyJohn Sandford’s Prey series focus on Lucas Davenport, an independently wealthy detective for Minnesota’s Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.  In this role, he takes on complicated and politically charged cases, and in this latest installment Davenport is in the thick of the politics, helping out the governor with a potential scandal in the upcoming Senate race.  With a missing political operative and no one offering up information, Lucas calls in his friends to help out.  Appearing from other Sandford series are Virgil Flowers and Kidd, both offering their own talents to the case.  Since I love Flowers and Kidd, I was hoping for more out of this meeting, it left me wanting more of them and less on-and-on about the nightmare that is political wrangling.  More suspense than mystery (you know who the bad guys are early on and can’t figure out why Lucas can’t figure it out), it was not one of my favorites in the series.  Maybe I’ve grown out of the series and need to move on to other authors, or maybe this just wasn’t his best work and the next one will be better…

Title: Silken Prey
Author: John Sandford
Genre: Fiction/Mystery
Pages: 416
Publication: Putnam Adult, May 2013

Uniform Justice

ImageWhile many books can take you on adventures in new places, give you new ideas to contemplate, and introduce you to new and complex characters, there is comfort in curling up to drop in on old friends.  I love a good mystery (OK, even some not-so-good ones) and a good mystery series is even better.  I will not bore everyone by carrying on about every book in a series, but I will occasionally highlight the one I’ve most recently read, hoping it will inspire someone else to check it out!

I just recently finished the 12th installment in Donna Leon’s Commissario Guido Brunetti series.  The series takes place in Venice and is one of the rare books where the location itself is a main character.  In Leon’s series it is easy to become absorbed in the descriptions of Venice, the canals, the architecture, the art, the fashion, the food (which all sounds fabulous even when I’m not sure what it is!).  Against this backdrop of beauty Leon writes about a corrupt city void of trust in the law, where things get done based on who you know and what you are willing to pay.  Commissario Guido Brunetti is a man of honor, struggling within this system, often walking a thin line between pursuing justice and using a corrupt system he abhors in order to do so.  Brunetti is surrounded by a cast of vivid characters including both trusted and devious co-workers, an inept boss, a sly and useful secretary, and a loyal, opinionated, out-spoken, and supportive wife.  It is against this backdrop that these mysteries become less about who-dun-it and more about why and what to do with the answers.   How can justice truly be served?  Can justice be found at all?

“Brunetti had no taste for this, not any longer.  ‘There’s no justice here, Dottore,’ he said, frightened to realize that he meant not only for this man and his family, but for this city, and this country, and their lives.”

The 22nd installment of the series will be release in March of this year, leaving me many more hours to spend curled up on the couch with Brunetti!

  Title: Uniform Justice   
   Author: Donna Leon
   Genre: Mystery
   Pages: 259
   Publication: Atlantic Monthly Press, August 2003