Catching up a bit:

Finished THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO by Steig Larsson. As one may have noticed in yesterday's posting, it made my Top Ten list for the year. I can see why people have loved it. The characters are intriguing in Lisbeth and Blomqvist, but to me, the real strength lies in the plotting. So much going on but not overly so. First, it's a cold case, which I've always loved. And there's family secrects and revenge and financial shenanigans and sociopath Lisbeth's situation dealing with her guardianship and on and on. Lots of story packed in the pages which, to be honest, you don't really come across very often. I had to stop myself from ordering the next book that comes out on the 6th in the UK. It is very sad, indeed, that the author died and that there will only be three books from him ever.

Then, last night, waiting for Steve to come home (7:30-ish) I started a quickie paperback mystery, THE STATE OF THE ONION by Julie Hyzy and finished it by bedtime. Yes, I'm a fast reader. Regular-sized paperbacks, I can finish in about three hours. This was a pleasant cosy set in the kitchens of the White House so it had new information to keep things interesting. The amateur sleuth, the assistant chef, did a lot of the things that amateur sleuths do that make one roll the eyes or fling the book but, read in pretty much one go, I made it through without doing so. Yes, I think I'd read the next one (I think there are only two). Ollie is the assistant chef at the White House and while returning from buying a retirement present for the Head Chef, she witnesses a man being chased on the lawn who she ends up helping to catch by hitting him with the gift - a frying pan . So of course now she's involved and can't let it go when the man says he's trying to warn the President. And her boyfriend is in the White House Secret Service so she simultaneously has inside info and being constantly warned off the case. Later, she turns out to be the only one who's ever seen an international assassin who then spends time trying to kill her. Meanwhile, she's auditioning for the position of Head Chef and her competition is her nemesis, a Martha Stewart clone. And a last minute State dinner honoring a potential peace treaty between two warring countries complicates matters. Like I say, it's a typical amateur sleuth mystery, but if one doesn't dwell on it too long, it can be enjoyable.

So now, with two days left in the year, I'm looking for something to read again. I may just finish a nonfiction book I started a while back. I dropped off some books at the library on Sunday and picked up a couple more so I do have some good ones to read, but I really don't want to add to the number of books read this month/year. As you can see, December was a bumper month for me but I need to add numbers to January.

Watched the third DVD of Veronica Mars. Good as always but then I get in the mood for more of her episodes but I have to wait for the shipment from Netflix and so then watch something else and get out of the mood for V.M and more into the mood for the one in between, and vice versa if you can follow that. I've got now the DVD of The Duchess, a movie starring Keira Knightly as the Lady Georgiana, a real historical figure but of course the movie will be very loosely about the real person. Here's a description:

Keira Knightley steps into the restricted world of the Duchess of Devonshire, a royal lady popular with her subjects but stuck in an unhappy marriage. If this situation recalls Princess Diana (a descendent of the Duchess's family), so much the better for the purposes of director Saul Dibb and company; this film is eager to draw parallels with the unfortunate Lady Di, even if she is never directly mentioned. Knightley's unsuspecting girl is married off to the Duke (Ralph Fiennes), a distracted jerk who craves male sons, and obviously has never thought of women as anything other than a means to achieve an heir. When the Duchess launches her procreative career with a couple of daughters, well, the Duke begins to get nervous--and partners outside the marriage become increasingly appealing.

But, I'm willing to watch it. Otherwise, I've got some DVDs from the library I should view ASAP (two Prime Suspects and the first Foyle's War) and then there's the Netflix instant viewing online with season four of MI-5 among others to watch. My cup runneth over and I have no right to complain about waiting for the next Veronica Mars. But I do pout a little.

Took Tug for a walk a little while ago. It's always something: too hot, too cold, too muddy, too windy... today it was too fricking icy with packed snow on interior roads of the subdivision - even the alleyway thingy because of all the snowmobiles and 4-wheelers dragging toboggans going on them. Both Tug and I were slipping a bit but I didn't fall down (knock wood). He's napping now in the doorway of my office. The poor baby just doesn't have exciting or active parents.

The website of the day is The Bibliothecary. I just love that name. It's brilliant. If I didn't have Bookeemonster, which I love, I'd steal it or be incredibly jealous.

Tomorrow evening, Steve is doing his shooting thing so I'll have some of the evening to myself. I've gotten a single serving frozen pizza for myself and I plan to make Chex mix sometime during the day. I sometimes don't make it to midnight but I'll give it a try. So basically, just a typical Wednesday night except for trying to stay awake longer. :) We're not partiers, and to be honest, with all the people out there being crazy -- because they think they have to because it's "New Year's Eve" or feel they have a free night to get falling down drunk -- it is better to be safe and happy at home. One good thing about not working for the Symphony anymore: I would otherwise be working the concert tomorrow night. Now I'm free!

Okay, off you go, I've got things to do as I'm sure you do too ...

Much love,
PK the Bookeemonster

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