Midweek Mini Reviews #8

You Can Have a Dog When I’m Dead: Essays on Life at an Angle by Paul Benedetti

Continuing my pattern of reading collections of personal essays, I decided to pick up Paul Benedetti ‘s You Can Have a Dog When I’m Dead: Essays on Life at an Angle. This book is a collection of his past columns for The Hamilton Spectator where he writes about his life, family and of course his neighbour Dave. Maintaining a good balance of being heartfelt, witty, hilarious and self-deprecating Benedetti’s writing at times reminded me of the writing style of the late Stuart McLean’s. Touching on every happenings in his life, there is definitely something that everyone can relate to in this collection of essays.

Well written and organized in a short and simple way, You Can Have a Dog When I’m Dead: Essays on Life at an Angle is most certainly a book that was made to take along with you on vacation or even for a weekend at the cottage.

This Time Around by Tawna Fenske

For those looking for a light, sweet contemporary romance Tawna Fenske’s This Time Around definitely does the trick. I adored the setting and all the characters, especially Jack’s daughter, Paige (who stole every scene she was in and even some that she wasn’t in) and Allie’s new friend, Skye. Furthermore it was difficult not to root for Jack and Allie as they were perfect for each other.

The only issue I had with this book was the conflict with Allie’s family and the money she discovers, I found it incredibly frustrating that she just kept on making poor decisions when it came to that. However, this was offset by the absurdity of what else she finds in her grandmother’s attic as it seems every character was finding something there.

This Time Around, is one of those warms that leaves you feeling warm and fuzzy in the end, and I like how it shows that the life you expected might not be the life you get and how sometimes it’s the unexpected that leaves us pleasantly surprised.

Regardless of how this book came into my possession, the above review consists of my honest opinion of the book and my opinion only.

 

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Mystery Monday | Escape to Havana by Nick Wilkshire

Mystery Mondays

Mystery Mondays is an occasional review feature here on Words of Mystery that showcases books in the mystery (and on occasion thriller) genre that we are currently reading and our thoughts on them. Feel free to comment and leave suggestions as to what we should read and review next.

Who is it by? Nick Wilkshire is a lawyer in addition to being a writer. Escape to Havana is the first book in his Foreign Affairs Mystery series. He currently lives in Ottawa, Ontario.

What is it about?After a very public scandal involving his wife, and a divorce that followed soon after the last thing Charlie Hillier wants is to remain in Ottawa where his ex-wife is. So when a posting in Cuba opens up, he’s more than willing to go. What he wasn’t expecting to find in his new position are the drugs under his bedroom floor…

eh

Where does it take place? Havana, the capital city of Cuba where Charlie has his first foreign posting.

Why did I like it? Escape to Havana was a title that wasn’t actually picked by myself but rather it won a twitter poll to be the next title to be featured on “Mystery Monday”. To be honest, it felt like it took an eternity for something to actually happen and for a mystery there was not much sleuthing going on. That being said, the protagonist, Charlie is quite likeable and a character that us regular folks can generally relate to. And things do really pick up in the last few chapters before the book ends. Escape to Havana was a fairly light read with a satisfying conclusion however I’m not sure if I’m be picking up Book 2 in this series.

When is it out? November 12, 2016

Regardless of how this book came into my possession, the above review consists of my honest opinion of the book and my opinion only.

Book Review | The Great Canadian Bucket List: One-of-a-Kind Travel Experiences by Robin Esrock

Authour:cdnbucket
Robin Esrock
Format:
Trade Paperback, 390 pages
Publication date:
October 12th 2013
Publisher:
Dundurn
Source:
Received from publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Review:

“Travel magic is not about what you’re doing, it’s about whom you’re doing it with.” (p. 69)

I think…at least for me it’s true what they say; when you live somewhere for a long time you tend to take things for granted. For instance, I’ve lived in Canada all my life and while I love travelling and have been to several different places, I have not visited much of the country I was born in.

What I love about Robin Esrock’s The Great Canadian Bucket List: One of a Kind Travel Experiences is that it provides not just outsiders, but Canadians a glimpse of what our country has to offer in terms of things to do, eat and observe. The book is separated into thirteen different sections for each of the provinces and territories that comprise Canada; and I loved how the sections were arranged in order from west coast to east coast followed by the three territories in the north. In addition to the organization, another thing this book has is a unique format. In each section the writer lists different things that he recommends readers should definitely try. Just like with any bucket list, the recommendations are actual items off of Esrock’s own bucket list and things that he in reality has tried himself for the book. This gives The Great Canadian Bucket List, a somewhat travel memoir feel in addition to it being a travel guide to Canada.

Overall The Great Canadian Bucket List: One of a Kind Travel Experiences is a straightforward and entertaining read and guide to Canada. It is informative without being overwhelming and has an excellent balance of stunning photography, personal antidotes, historical tidbits, travel tips, and expert recommendations. After finishing this book, I can say for certain my wanderlust has definitely worsened and I am extra eager to embark on a road trip across Canada…now if only I can find someone willing to go with me who can drive.

Regardless of how this book came into my possession, the above review consists of my honest opinion of the book and my opinion only.