Monday, July 25, 2016

The Woman in Blue by Elly Griffiths

Finally catching up with Elly Griffiths' Ruth Galloway series with the latest entry, #8 - The Woman in Blue (2016).

Cathbad is back, and in top form! So good to see him back at the center of things relating to the mystery, though I'm somewhat disappointed that, while on maternity leave, Judy's character has been relegated to that of Cathbad's partner and mother of his new baby. Hopefully by the next book she'll be back on the force and see some real action.

The mystery itself was interesting; I like way Griffiths integrates different religious, pagan, and secular ways of thinking into many of her stories in a relatively equal way. I am inclined to believe that her personal beliefs run closest toward Ruth's own (as the main character), yet other characters (such as Cathbad and Father Hennessey) present a sympathetic view of other ways of thinking.

Overall, a nice continuation for a series that has really settled on a comfortable pattern, with the pros and cons that entails. I think you really know what you're getting with a Ruth Galloway mystery at this point, which is okay by me. Looking forward to the next one, which is expected sometime early 2017.

See my reviews of book 1, books 2-4, and books 5-7 posted earlier on this blog.

Keep reading! Beth

Friday, July 8, 2016

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (and other concerns) (2012) by Mindy Kaling is a super funny, very sweet book broken into many small chapters.  

As expected, Mindy has a wonderful voice that is at the same time endearingly self-deprecating, honest, and hilarious. I loved the insights into her life, though the format of segmented essays (while very easy to read) meant that she didn't delve super deeply into any one topic. But I didn't need this book to be a full autobiography or a sordid tell-all about her life, and it wasn't.

This was simply a collection of very funny observations and anecdotes covering lots of little bits of her life that certainly gave me greater insight into Mindy Kaling the person (not to be confused with her character from her show The Mindy Project - Mindy Lahiri. this is why I don't get when people name characters after themselves). And it made me laugh -- a lot! What more can you ask for?
"[M]y parents dressed both my brother and me according to roughly exactly the same aesthetic: Bert from Ernie and Bert. Easing them out of dressing me in primary colors and cardigans (seriously, I was a child who wore cardigans) and getting them to let me grow my hair out past my earlobes was a first huge step that took years." (191)
Keep reading! Beth