Non Fiction And Translation

I need to refresh my skills but one thin blogosphere friends might not know about me, is that I am an accomplished linguist.  I don’t merely mean with animals.  :)  Languages are something I have always taken to with ease.  As a tiny child, I was already enthralled to make friends of other cultures.  The rare time Ron & I travel, it is our pleasure to honour host countries by doing our best to use their language.  We don’t do everything the Romans do though.  ;)  We request vegetarian food!

Pertaining to Canada, a good portion of my reading has turned to non-fiction.  Michael J. Fox’s memoirs are a must;  exceedingly well-written with a vocabulary surpassing mine visibly and hilariously engaging all at once.  I love details about Canada, be it history or autobiographies of authors, like Margaret Laurence.  A special favourite are true ghost records from individualized regions of our country.

For the third time, I’m linking my non-fiction and translation reading material with these groups.  This year:  I seriously urge Jen to visit my post and grace it with a comment from her, being hostess and all!  I don’t conside challenges without prizes a waste, if I have the pleasure of the hostess reading my contributions.  :-)  Check back for the literature I add to both places.


Just A Beginner 01-03  ~  A Conversationalist 04-06
Carolyn Is Trilingual 07-09  ~  A Top Linguist! 10-12

I will reach “Conversationalist” level for certain.  Let’s see how many more translated works I read.  A few might be in their originating languages.  :)


“The Tin Flute”  Gabrielle Roy  1947
“The Road Past Altamont”  Gabrielle Roy  1966
“The Hidden Mountain”  Gabrielle Roy  1961
“Wildflower”  Gabrielle Roy  1970
“The Secret Supper”  Javier Sierra  2004
“One-Hundred Years Of Solitude”  Gabriel García Márquez  1967


Dilettante 01-05  ~  Seeker 11-15
Explorer 06-10  ~  Master 16-20

I see I have already cleaned up the “Dilettante” level.  There will be many more.


(1)  “Lucky Man”  Michael J. Fox  2002
(2)  “The Kids Canadian Bird Book”  Pamela Hickman, Heather Collins  1995
(3)  “Let’s Go! The Story Of Getting From There To Here”  Lizann Flatt, Scot Ritchie  2007
(4)  “Eyes Of An Angel, Spirit Guides, Reality Of Love”  Paul Elder  2005
(5)  “Andrew Goes Fishing In Manitoba”  Carol & Kristin Szuminsky, Jack Brown  2008
“Made In Canada: 101 Amazing Achieve”  Bev Spencer  2003
“Beauty Tips From Moose Jaw”  Will Ferguson  2004
“Bathroom Book Of Canadian Trivia”  Angela C. Murphy  2005
“The Dog Who Wouldn’t Be”  Farley Mowat  1957
“Owls In The Family”  Farley Mowat  1961
“The Prophet’s Camel Bell”  Margaret Laurence  1963

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7 Continents & Africa

7 Continents 2016

It is my pleasure to meet Dorothee, whom I look forward to knowing as I participate in “7 Continents“.  You see immediately she is a strongly-connected hostess, answering all of her guests’ comments.  I read that she is a cancer survivor;  awful for anyone of any age to face.  It is special for me that she is German.  This is one country of my heritage I have not seen yet.  Even though I only speak and read the language mildly so far;  I always feel there’s something magical about befriending a German, right in the country.  It is as if German friends bring a stronger piece of the heritage to me.

A very happy benefit is, as a third generation Canadian RIEDEL:  I will get a break from misspellings and mispronunciations of my name!  In German-speaking countries, it is common;  the opposite of my constantly-correcting experience here!  Go on, English-speaking friends:  guess how these six little letters are supposed to be pronounced.  The goal of 7 Continents is easy on the surface:  only 7 books from each continent, with permission to replace the seldom lived-in Antartica.  That can be a book in which there is travel between any continents.

My rule is that I always draw my literature from our library.  With about 3,000 unread books here at our home – I have not counted – I can fulfill any requirements.  I will see if something connects with Antarctica.  Dorothee’s twist, to challenge us, is that authors be from the continents.  That’s a little trickier than selecting any old book depicting a country but I can do it and will keep adding literature that applies!  It is my way to keep surpassing limits all year, with whatever I find.  Please revisit my post to see the list I build.


The Kids Canadian Bird Book”  Pamela Hickman, Heather Collins  1995  (Canada)
The Union Street Bakery”  Mary Ellen Taylor  2013  (United States)

The Wyndham Case”  Jill Paton Walsh  1993  (England)
“The Hills Is Lonely”  Lillian Beckwith  1959  (Scotland)
“Central Line”  Maeve Binchy  1978  (Ireland)

“Secret Of The Samurai Sword”  Phyllis A. Whitney  1958  (Japan)

“The Forgotten Garden”  Kate Morton  2008  (Australia)

“The Midnight Side”  Natasha Mostert  2000  (Africa)

“One-Hundred Years Of Solitude”  Gabriel García Márquez  1967  (Columbia)

“The Elusive Mrs. Pollifax”  Dorothy Gilman  1971  (USA to Bulgaria!)


Kinna is a lovely, popular advocate of African and women’s literature, in Ghana.  I am rejoining her a second time, in eagerness to exceed the four books I contributed last year.  She asks for five books pertaining to Africa, with a request that three be written by Africans and not merely depicted there.  That is her twist that challenges me but drawing literature from our home library, I can do it!

Below, I will build a list of everything about Africa that I read in 2016.  It is always my intention to keep on reading beyond minimum instructions.  I must have other African-born authors but will read more by Natasha if need be.  It is handy that Margaret, from my province, lived in Africa with her husband for a few years.  Between the two, we have Kenna’s African-born literary content.


“The Midnight Side”  Natasha Mostert  2000  (Born in Johannesburg)
“The Prophet’s Camel Bell”  Margaret Laurence  1963  (Lived in Somaliland)
“The Cow-Tail Switch & Other West African Stories”  Harold Courlander  1947
“Secret Of The Tiger’s Eye”  Phyllis A. Whitney  1961  (Cape Town)
“The Mummy Case”  Elizabeth Peters  1985  (Egypt)

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Gothic Fiction 2016

Gothic Fiction 2016

I occasionally encounter reading groups that are right up my alley and which my own circles have been offering since 2014.  Even though “ETHEREAL” used the word “gothic” every year but this one, beginning on February 1….  it got missed by the audience that belongs with us!  :)

I am very happy to acquaint Diana Leigh.  It sounds like she might join “MY KIND OF MYSTERY” too;  also created with gothic mystery in mind.  Why wouldn’t everyone, who loves this stuff?  I might offer gothic paperbacks as prizes!  They are treasures to acquire.

I’d like to bring attention to a short essay I wrote three years ago.  When referencing websites that describe what “gothic mystery” is:  there are none better than the one I wrote!  Please visit it here.

Diana Leigh makes her theme easy by not sticking to books labelled “gothic”.  She welcomes us to let the feel of our reading be our gauge and so, I shall.  Please stay tuned for the material I will list, including reviews I hope you read.

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100+ In 2016


More and more, I am choosing challenges with hostesses who reward participation. So many closed crisply after new year’s eve and I spent days tallying them.  It became clear some were a waste of time.  More than not offering a prize incentive, I didn’t think the hostesses would read the posts I spent valuable holiday time filling in.  I wondered why I was bothering.  “The thrill of finishing” is insufficient.  I could do that on my own.  Hosting takes more attention and heart, than pasting a logo and thinking of a name.  I am happy to rejoin Freda because she makes doing so rewarding!

She will welcome me by visiting this post, answers comments at her blog, and is a warm Canadian I am happy to support.  Speaking of which, it is year three for my groups, girl!  :-)  The most special thing, which I cannot fathom making time to accomplish as a Mother and new wife, is looking at our reviews.  She reads all of mine!  The “helpful” button at Amazon Canada is never gladder than when she visits.  I am an author-in-training who carefully polishes 300-word reviews.  It’s my guess this is why I get away with some brief children’s literature.  I do the same full-fledged review for every book.  To be read – my articles at my own blog, as well as my reviews – is the number one gift to me.

This post will show everything I read all year.  Please give the last linky page a day or two after new year’s eve.  Nine of my books were left out.  I hated telling friends “I’m too busy with ‘reading challenges to visit during the last week of the year”.  That isn’t right.  Better still, I’m encouraging hostesses to begin in February.  I go right until the end, to push the number of books I read and review every year.  I broke 150!  My goal is to see if I maintain that with greater ease this year.  :)  Thank you for caring about our entries, Freda.  I am happy to return!


(1)  “Lucky Man”  Michael J. Fox  2002
(2)  “The Kids Canadian Bird Book”  Pamela Hickman, Heather Collins  1995
(3)  “The Sunflower’s Gift”  Ann Marie Brezovski, Patricia Trudeau  2014
“Let’s Go! The Story Of Getting From There To Here”  Lizann Flatt  2007
“Eyes Of An Angel, Spirit Guides, Reality Of Love”  Paul Elder  2005
(6)  “Andrew Goes Fishing In Manitoba”  Carol, Kristin Szuminsky, Jack Brown  2008
(7)  “The Wyndham Case”  Jill Paton Walsh  1993
(8)  “Feint Of Art”  Hailey Lind  2006
(9)  “The Union Street Bakery”  Mary Ellen Taylor  2013
(10)  “Ghost On Black Mountain”  Ann Hite  2011

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Mystery Tally & Cover Of 2015

My Kind Of Mystery 2015 guests:  have you identified this book cover, author, and year for an extra entry into our year-end prize draw?  There are no e-mails yet, so here are the hints I promised and they might as well be blunt.  ;)

My Kind Of Mystery 2015

This cover is gorgeous but I did not feel that way about its contents.  You might have seen me reading it at Goodreads.  I discussed disliking it in my mystery update post recently, on January 5.  That’s as blatent as hints can get.  All you have to do is revisit my last few books of 2015 in a Goodread’s shelf, or scan our mystery close-out post.  Heck, if you knew my books were listed in reading order, one could just check the list right here.  ;)  This is an English, female author no longer living.

Full Mystery Levels

I finished 75 mystery-related books.  Remember:  we include it all.  Phyllis A. Whitney’s excellent tutorial about how to organize ourselves to become authors helped me very much and is advice I will always remember!  Stephen King’s discussion about what horror is and how it works differently over time and via various mediums, was remarkably educational.  I gleaned far more from it than I imagined, not caring for horror but certainly applying the information to spooky moments and suspense.  Would you believe I had it on a shelf at least twenty years?  This is how it is with most of my hardcover Stephen collection.  I am reading each in that queue very occasionally.

From time to time someone opens a mystery or gothic-type group, missing mine or simply eager to do their own thing.  There is the longstanding vintage niche, the cozy niche, and an excellent gothic hostess for 2016, whom I am going to join.  Now for the third year:  there is no group like ours;  none encompassing the scope we do.  I am happy about filling that spot in our community and am determined that more clue into us.  If you enjoy the heart that goes into my circles, please help people find them.


Here are the top 6 books I treasured reading this year!
They exemplify the unique reach of “My Kind Of Mystery”.  These would not all suit other groups.  These reinforce how glad I am that our special twist works.

1.  Guide To Fiction Writing  (Genuinely helpful to my stalled manuscript)
2.  The Haunting Of Maddie Clare  (A fantastic, award-winning Canadian)
3.  The Tale Of Halcyon Crane  (Atmospheric, new Minnesota author)
4.  The Boarded-Up House  (100 year-old masterpiece!  Free as an e-book)
5.  The House On Tradd Street  (Such rare treasure-hunting for grownups!)
6.  Secrets & Mysteries Of The World  (I loved covering these mystical places).

Our 2015 review pages will be open another month at least, should you review later, when you have time.  If you are keen to start with 2016:  it doesn’t matter to me if you introduce what you’re reading now and finish in December.  I will be pleased to see you rejoining me.  A post and an e-mail is all you need this year (or an e-mail with a Goodreads shelf, if you don’t blog).
Thank you for making our groups the bright, friendly community they are!


(1) “The Palace Guard”  Charlotte MacLeod  1981
(2) “The Corpse In Oozak’s Pond”  Charlotte MacLeod  1987
(3) “Tempest In The Tea Leaves”  Kari Lee Townsend  2011
(4) “The Cat, The Quilt, And The Corpse”  Leann Sweeney  2009
(5) “Larceny And Old Lace”  Tamar Myers  1996
(6) “The Christie Curse”  Victoria Abbott  2013
(7) “The Cat Who Played Brahms”  Lilian Jackson Braun  1987
(8) “A Novena For Murder”  Sister Carol Anne O’Marrie  1984
(9) “Dyeing Wishes”  Molly MacRae  2013
(10) “Aunt Dimity Beats The Devil”  Nancy T. Atherton  2000
(11) “Mystery Of The Piper’s Ghost”  Zillah K. MacDonald  1954
(12) “Death Of A Literary Widow”  Robert Barnard  1979
(13) “The Half-A-Moon Inn”  Paul Fleischman  1980
(14) “The Riddle Of The Lonely House”  Augusta Huiell Seaman  1935
(15) “Shattered Silk”  Barbara Michaels  1986
(16) “Body Of Intution”  Claire Daniels  2002
(17) “House Of Dark Shadows”  Robert Liparulo  2008
(18) “Fool’s Gold”  Juliet Blackwell  2013
(19) “Tom’s Midnight Garden”  Philippa Pearce  1958
(20) “The Ghost Of Thomas Kempe”  Penelope Lively  1973

(21) “When Midnight Comes”  Carol Beach York  1979
(22) “The Mystery Of The Other Girl”  Wylly Folk St. John  1978
(23) “Shadows At The Fair”  Lea Wait  2002
(24) “Whose Body?”  Dorothy L. Sayers  1923
(25) “The Mystery Book Mystery”  Wylly Folk St. John  1976
(26) “Charmed”  Barbara Bretton  2011
(27) “A Vision In Velvet”  Juliet Blackwell  2014
(28) “Greystones”  Antonia Lamb  1966
(29) “Murder On Location”  Howard Engel  1982
(30) “The Unmasking Of ‘Ksan”  Eric Wilson  1986
(31) “The Lost Treasure Of Casa Loma”  Eric Wilson  1979
(32) “The Missing Chums”  Leslie McFarlane  1928
(33) “Lament For A Lounge Lizard”  Mary Jane Maffini  2003
(34) “Gold Digger”  Vicki Delany  2009
(35) “Too Hot To Handle”  Mary Jane Maffini  2007
(36) “The Sayers Swindle”  Victoria Abbott  2014
(37) “The African Quest”  Lyn Hamilton  2000
(38) “Deadly Appearances”  Gail Bowen  1990
(39) “Witchery Hill”  Welwyn Wilton Katz  1984
(40) “The Castle In The Attic”  Elizabeth Winthrop  1985

(41) “The Witch Lady Mystery”  Carol Beach York  1976
(42) “Look For Me By Moonlight”  Mary Downing Hahn  1995
(43) “Spinning In Her Grave”  Molly MacRae  2014
(44) “How To Tail A Cat”  Rebecca M. Hale  2012
(45) “Watcher In The Woods”  Robert Liparulo  2008
(46) “Danse Macabre”  Stephen King  1981
(47) “Guide To Fiction Writing”  Phyllis A. Whitney  1982
(48) “A Haunting Is Brewing”  Juliet Blackwell  2014
(49) “Too Many Secrets”  Betty Ren Wright  1997
(50) “The Cat, The Professor, & The Poison”  Leann Sweeney  2010
(51) “Advent Of Dying”  Sister Carol Anne O’Marie  1986
(52) “Secrets & Mysteries Of The World”  Sylvia Browne  2005
(53) “Murder Buys A T-Shirt”  Christy Fifield  2012
Lost Treasures, True Stories Of Discovery”  Larry Verstraete  2006
(55) “Artifacts”  Mary Anna Evans  2003
(56) “The Chardonnay Charade”  Ellen Crosby  2006
(57) “Murder Under Cover”  Kate Carlisle  2011
(58) “The Amazing Mrs. Pollifax”  Dorothy Gilman  1970
(59) “Murder Sees The Light”  Howard Engel  1984
(60) “The Haunting Of Maddie Prue”  Alfred Silver  2000

(61) “Fruit Of The Poisoned Tree”  Joyce Lavene  2006
(62) “Murder At The Mendel”  Gail Bowen  1991
Girl Sleuth, Nancy Drew & The Women Who Created Her”  Melanie Rehak  2005
(64) “The Boarded-Up House”  Augusta Huiell Seaman  1915
(65) “The Girl Next Door”  Augusta Huiell Seaman  1917
(66) “Poisoned Petals”  Joyce Lavene  2007
(67) “A Killer Plot”  Ellery Adams  2010
(68) “The House On Tradd Street”  Karen White  2008
(69) “The Night Of Four-Hundred Rabbits”  Elizabeth Peters  1971
(70) “Waiting For Willa”  Dorothy Eden  1970
(71) “The Haunting Of Maddy Clare”  Simone St. James  2012
(72) “The Tale Of Halcyon Crane”  Wendy Webb  2010
(73) “The Mystery Of The Stone Tiger”  Carolyn Keene  1963
(74) “Hunting For Hidden Gold”  Leslie McFarlane  1928
(75) “The Black Dudley Murder”  Margery Allingham  1929

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My Celtic Coasts Page

CELTIC COATS is new in 2016 and I hope you love the wide-open forum for all three countries, as much as I do!  My few Welsh books at last, have somewhere to go and I read speckled amounts of my Irish and Scottish literature.  I am excited that presenting them in unison occurred to me and hope many benefit from it.  This is my page to share what I read.  A bit of description follows.  Please click this gorgeous logo, to see my home site and how to join.


Celtic Coasts 2016


I am happy and excited to present:  CELTIC COASTS!
Mom is part Irish and Scottish, so I was ecstatic to visit Scotland in 2009.  My spouse & I wanted to visit Wales but hope to learn about it, through reading and friends we have there.  I have Welsh content in our library but not enough to fill challenges.  I have considered hosting a group for Ireland since 2013 and Scotland before that.  Here:   savour Celtic literature over all three of these gorgeous countries!  I imagine many would love to.

–  Authors born or residing in Wales, Ireland, Scotland.
–  Books in which any part visits these countries.
–  Welsh, Irish, Scottish connections.

I am immediately finding a lot ofconnections, like “Bridge Of Friendship” by Mabel Esther Allan, whose literature I cherish whenever I acquire it.  She is English and this book is in the United States.  A girl welcomes and befriends an Irish family.  I anticipate a lot of fun with this new group!  I can’t wait to dive in.

(1) Join by making a post to promote this group.  Send that link via e-mail!
(2) If you review, use our alphabetized page all year.
(3) Attend any conversation and activity you like.


The Stars Of Riedel Cards

Our boys, McCartney & Spirit, have their own line of cards!

There is one event with a prize, plus our year-end draw.  Other activities will be for fun.
See my other groups here!  *


My reading is varied.  Here are ideas for everyone keen on joining us.  I will link reviews here as I finish each book.


“Bridge Of Friendship”  Mabel Esther Allan  1975
“Keeper Of The Castle”  Juliet Blackwell  2014
“The Hills Is Lonely”  Lillian Beckwith  1959
“Central Line”  Maeve Binchy  1978
“Victoria Line”  Maeve Binchy  1980
“Echoes”  Maeve Binchy  1985
“Into The Fire”  Jodi McIsaac  2013
“The Trickster”  Muriel Gray  1994

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My Kind Of Mystery Page, 2016

MY KIND OF MYSTERY is ready for 2016!  How about you?  I will be nice to see us growing.  I have learned a lot since it premiered and made tweaks every year so we always have a purpose together, while never being complicated so anyone is shy about chiming in and playing.  This is my page to share what I read.  A bit of description follows.  Please click this year’s very whimsical logo, to see my group site and how to join.  When the author of this book logo is identified, you will most certainly understand the whimsy!


My Kind Of Mystery

Welcome to year three!

There are sub-genre groups.  Mine was born because I wanted to furnish a place for all mystery content.  Folks rejoining me:  your continued presence makes me smile.  I hope you enjoy our subtle changes.  Newcomers:  please think of yourselves as my guests in a friendly mystery lounge!  As low-key or active as you might be:  you make up our party!

Include anything you consider a fit:  children’s and non-fiction too.  Writing tutorials, author autobiographies, conspiracy theories;  all the way to mystical mysteries of the world.  “Crime” is one kind of mystery, not a synonym.  There are many others.  These creative, rare types are my favourites.


The Stars Of Riedel Cards

Our boys, McCartney & Spirit, have their own line of cards!

See my other groups here!  *

New Mystery Levels


These levels I had fun thinking-up, are now progress signposts for us to use, rather than decrees.  I know I will succeed at “Invisible Floor” level for sure but the point is to tell later, how we did.  Here are books I think I will read.  They will be linked to reviews as they are finished.


“The Wyndham Case”  Jill Paton Walsh  1993
“Keeper Of The Castle”  Juliet Blackwell  2014
“The Novice’s Tale”  Margaret Frazer  1992

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My Gentle Spectrums Page, 2016

GENTLE SPECTRUMS is ready for 2016!  I hope we keep growing like in 2015!  This is my personal page, with a bit of description.  Please click this year’s pretty logo, to see my home site and how to join.  If you can’t imagine answers to every subject yet, come for the party.  :-)

I had no books in mind when I created these ‘Gentle Subjects‘;  just had fun brainstorming them.  I printed them, carried the list and a pen around our house, and worked out titles the same as you will!  I’m certain my examples will spark ideas.

Gentle Spectrums 2016

Welcome to year three of GENTLE SPECTRUMS!

I created this dual game, initially for a place to continue with more colour titles than older challenges included.  There are many among my books.  Opposite from narrowing material, one hue at a time, we collect as many as we find.  Since everything may repeat, I request titles bearing actual colours and their spectrums.  For example, brown and beige;  not “chocolate”.  There is a list of additional vocabulary that makes “Limitless Palette” easy.

I also love matching titles to broad subjects.  With ample room for creativity and the fun air of a scavenger hunt, these naturally metamorphosed into one group.  Thus it has two options.  You need only join once.  If your material fits a second game, you are set!  Note:  games A and B are separate.  The same “Limitless Palette” book may fulfill a “Gentle Subjects” category dually.




“Ghost On Black Mountain”  Ann Hite  2011
“Grey Mask”  Patricia Wentworth  1928




“The Propet’s Camel Bell”  Margaret Laurence  1963


“Eyes Of An Angel:  Spirit Guides, Reality Of Love”  Paul Elders  2005
“The Hills Is Lonely”  Lillian Beckwith  1959


“A Wee Christmas Homicide”  Kaitlyn Dunnett  2009

4.  FOOD

“The Union Street Bakery”  Mary Ellen Taylor  2013
“The Bordeaux Betrayal”  Ellen Crosby  2008


“Cloaked In Malice”  Annette Blair  2012
“Spellcasting In Silk”  Juliet Blackwell  2015
“Beauty Tips From Moose Jaw”  Will Ferguson  2004


“Escape From Mr. Lemoncello’s Library”  Chris Grabenstein  2013
“Here Lies The Librarian”  Richard Peck  2006


“The Album”  Mary Roberts Rinehart  1933
“Photography & The Art Of Seeing”  Freeman Patterson  1979


“Home From The Vinyl Café”  Stuart McLean  1998
“Voices After Midnight”  Richard Peck  1989


“The Etruscan Chimera”  Lyn Hamilton  2002


“One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish”  Dr. Seuss (Theodor Seuss Geisel)  1960
“Bridge Of Friendship”  Mabel Esther Allan  1975
“The Night Travellers”  Sandra Birdsell  1982


The Stars Of Riedel Cards

Our boys, McCartney & Spirit, have their own line of cards!

See my other groups here!  *

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My Ethereal Page, 2016!

ETHEREAL is ready for 2016!  I hope even more join me than before!  This is my personal post to share what I read.  A bit of the description follows but please click on this year’s lovely logo, to see my original group site, telling you how to join.


Welcome to year three!
There are millions of books with mystical subject matter and as many people reading it passionately.  The trouble was finding groups that weren’t “YA-oriented”;  as if we grownups weren’t believers in the afterlife, the magic in our world, and ourselves.  My favourite subject is spirits / ghosts!  This was even scarcer.  The popular theme seemed to be vampires, not my cup of tea, nor do I have any enthusiasm for twenty year-old heroines.  Today, I am elated to report that there are finally new authors creating ghost fiction for adults, such as our Simone St. James!  I thanked her personally.

My faith is broad.  “Ethereal” is a home for everything under the sun that goes beyond the black & white.  If you are among the millions reading about haunted houses, psychics, witches and serious literature:  healing, dreams, miracles;  I invite you to our group.  We leave nothing out.  Fantasy and children’s literature are magical.  Clergywomen and clergymen heroes suit our spectrum too.  All we need is a spark of mysticism or spirituality.


The Stars Of Riedel Cards

Our boys, McCartney & Spirit, have their own line of cards!

I will hold one event with a prize, before our year-end draw.  Other activities are for fun.

*  See all my groups here!  *


New Ethereal Levels

Levels now work in reverse – for fun.  Instead of declaring how many to read, you tell me how it works out.  I will reach “The Soul” but it would be fun to target my brand new category, “Harmony”.  When we reach a marker, let’s comment:  “I am at X”.  Books I finish will have links.


“The Union Street Bakery”  Mary Ellen Taylor  2013
“Ghost On Black Mountain”  Ann Hite  2011
“The Kissing Man”  George Elliott  1962
“A Dry Spell”  Susie Moloney  1997
“The Dog Who Wouldn’t Be”  Farley Mowat  1957
“Owls In The Family”  Farley Mowat  1961
“The Dragon & The Dry Goods Princess”  David Arnason  1991
“The Darkest Road”  Guy Gavriel Kay  1986
“The Land Without Unicorns”  Vicki Blum  2001
“Into The Fire”  Jodi McIsaac  2013

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My Kind Of Mystery Summary

My Kind Of Mystery 2015

Hello mystery buffs!  There is a month for logging your progress and reading whatever you like.  I like to keep the review pages of my whole trio open for a few months anyway.  I hope you’re looking forward to the end-of-year prize draw on January 31!  I haven’t heard anyone mention the prize point table I used since the latter half of last year.  I think it’s  straightforward but if it doesn’t appeal to you, I will just give an entry to all participants.  All you had to do was join me to be eligible but I would like to hear from you, to know you’re with me.  This is an ideal time to share progress.

Last year, someone won who had removed her blog.  She had commented a time or two in early months but I don’t think she returned to blogging.  Part of the point of events and prizes, along with sharing a year with you that you enjoy, is differentiating myself and attracting members in subsequent years.  I don’t consider it a waste and think of it as a thank-you treat.  She e-mailed excitedly and might mention our groups in some other platform like Twitter.  However you can see I would rather award someone who is still here.

It isn’t about finishing.  As you will see in the 2016 posts I am in the middle of preparing, our level charts are going to become cute progress markers, instead of minimum requests.  My circles will be all about YOU telling me how many you have read and giving you a warm, comfortable home base for whatever you accomplish.  However we can’t get any laxer than that, so a word from you all that you have seen these updates would be wonderful.

I am eliminating that problem in the new year too, using e-mail to sign-up instead of a linky button.  I’ll list guests on a page, by country, which will be nice.  All discussions and events are voluntary but sometimes my posts are informational or clarify things.  A quick note to tell you there is a relevant post, means never again posting anything that is solely seen by crickets.  In fact, a guest can easily let me know by e-mail that have moved to France.  That would be awesome because there’s an Yves Rocher perfume I can’t find in Canada.  It’s called “Cantate”, for those who want to know.  Instead of being floral based, it smells like candies.  I’ve had it a good 20 years and only sparingly wear it every second or third year.  I think I’ll sprinkle some on now!

While we’re digressing, I need of a room fragrance called “PECAN CARAMEL” that should be easier to get.  It was made by Avon, sold by Regal, but didn’t appear in catalogues I saw after.  This scent proves the concept of aromatherapy because I feel happy and stress free the moment I spray it.  I have far less left than I do of the Cantate perfume.  Probably because I spritzed it liberally, before not seeing a way to obtain any more.  Just putting it out there, should my readers have bloodhound shopping skills!

I thought it would be fun to report that the highest quantity of reviews in “MY KIND OF MYSTERY“, is in letter A-C.  It has 77 reviews and the next highest, D-F, has 45.  Those who don’t  review only have to drop off a list of finished titles at any of this group’s pages:  the review page, the Mother page, or this one.  I hope you take advantage of our alphabetized format, which makes it easier to spot authors you like.

Did you have noteworthy experiences?  I discovered books I love by Simone St. James, Wendy Webb, Karen White, and Augusta Huiell Seaman;  who published them one-hundred years ago.  Happy anniversary to my favourite, “The Boarded-Up House”!  It’s free for “Kindle” and is veritably my kind of mystery:  about exploring an oddly empty mansion, instead of hinging on crime.  It’s excellent!  I was surprised to find I disliked Margery Allingham and Dorothy L. Sayers’s first novels but am assured  regarding the latter, that succeeding novels are much better.  I hope the same can be said of Marion C. Beaton, whose first Hamish Macbeth novel I loathed.  This is a case in which I collected, I would say more than twenty of her works;  some of them first editions!  I didn’t feel like trying the sequel this year but will get it out of the way soon.  I may well like her Agatha Raison series better too.  I have loved an author whose first book I disliked, have you?  I gave Juliet Blackwell a second chance and she became a top favourite, no less.

Tell us honestly: when you dislike a book other people like, do you wonder if it’s you, or whether people give out five stars too easily and aren’t discerning?  However I have defended Karen White as well as Lyn Hamilton, whose series some people vent terribly about, which I love for reasons I am able to thoroughly cite.  In those cases too, I think they missed what was gifted and different about those books I loved.

Lastly:  an extra name in the bowl will be given to everyone who guesses the book that served as our “MY KIND OF MYSTERY” banner this time!  Answer with a comment on any of our mystery pages, if you figure out the name and publishing year.  If you really don’t know, say that in a comment.  It’s close enough to January 31 that I might as well furnish a hint.  Thank you all for being a part of this with me.  Every comment and expression of pleasure has meant something to me.  Yours sincerely, Carolyn.

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Gentle Spectrums Samples & Updates

Gentle Spectrums 2015

I hope Christmas has been a ray of light.  Happy new year 2016!  January 31, my trio of groups are having their year-end prize draw!  Winners are e-mailed my list of second hand books from which to choose!  Large, gauging by the giveaway-designated boxes in our library.  I accompany it with a page of other prizes, knowing book tastes are very personalized.  A fun, weird combo:  for example, a selection from my greeting card collection.  A few are in the form of photo prints.   Canadian postcards, even garden planting seeds!  A thank you for being members, a reward for sharing your journeys.  Like birthday and Chritmas presents:  I find it’s nice to have something to open.  A treat is something to look forward to – like these groups have a purpose towards which to aim.  Leave a note to show you saw this and summarize your progress in our categories.

There are fresh ones coming up!  I look forward to presenting my 2016 year.  Please help us grow by telling others about RIEDEL challenges widely.  :-)  Thank you for playing along with me and know I have fun in store.  I thought blog readers would like a look at how “Gentle Spectrums” is going.  Here are two samples of participants’ books and my colours too.  We see for instance, our friend Sue in Utah, is clearing out Jan Karon’s warehouse.  ;)  It’s odd, I have a bounty of colour literature I didn’t take up.  Via supplementary words like “light” and “bright“, I have squeezed in 12.  The rest of our matching is worth perusing at our review page.  Click the colour palette and each title.

Did some books noticeably differ from expectation?  I disliked a few legends:  Gabriel García Márquez, Margery Allingham, and Dorothy Sayers’s first novel too.  Perhaps they all have better oeuvres.  If this was a year for garnering favourite authors, which is very special:  please do identify those five-star books.  I am in love with Karen White’s “Tradd Street“.  It finally provides adult ghost fiction;  including code-deciphering and a treasure hunt!  Most authors who write concepts this fantastic, turn them into kid’s literature.  Thank you for making it a forty year-old!  Who wouldn’t love an adventure like that?!  She usually writes romances.  I’m grateful for this haunted house series.

Two new favourites are beginning to create much-wanted adult ghost fiction:  Wendy Webb, in northern Minnesota and an already award-winning Canadian:  Simone St. James!  I loved both their books, told them so, and was over the moon to receive an energetic reply from Simone St. James!  That is a dream come true, an author excited about how much I love her work and telling me I made her week!  How is your variety?  This was my year for blowing it through the roof:  essays, poetry, a lot of Canadiana, and an abundance in non-fiction.  Several children’s books warmed my heart too, many at our review page.  Yours sincerely, Carolyn.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Emerald City”  Jennifer Egan
The Golden Ball”  Agatha Christie

Diamond Head”  Cecily Wong

Rock With Wings”  Anne Hillerman
In This Mountain”  Jan Karon
Harry Potter Sorcerer’s Stone”  J.K. Rowling
These High, Green Hills”  Jan Karon

The Klondike Gold Rush:  Photographs From 1896-1899”  Graham Wilson  1997
Gold Digger”  Vicki Delany  2009
Fool’s Gold”  Juliet Blackwell  2013
Greystones”  Antonia Lamb  1966
“Mystery Of The Stone Tiger” Carolyn Keene 1963
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Just As Long As We’re Together”  Judy Blume

Yes Please!”  Amy Poehler

Happy City”  Charles Montgomery
Dream Days”  Kenneth Grahame
The Love Song Of Miss Queenie Hennessy”  Rachel Joyce

Come Rain Or Come Shine”  Jan Karon
A Light In The Window”  Jan Karon
At Home In Mitford”  Jan Karon
Jan Karon’s Mitford Cookbook & Kitchen Reader”  Jan Karon

Cats Know Best”  Lesley Anne Ivory, Colin Eisler  1988
Wish Upon A Unicorn”  Vicki Blum  1999
A Hill For Looking”  Martha Brooks  1982
Charmed”  Barbara Bretton  2011
A Vision In Velvet”  Juliet Blackwell  2014
Step To The Music” Phyllis A. Whitney  1953
The Snail’s Spell”  Joanne Ryder, Lynne Cherry  1982
The Life Story Of The Butterfly”  Jilly MacLeod, Joanne Cowne  1996
Lost Treasures, True Stories Of Discovery”  Larry Verstraete  2006
The Art Of Robert Bateman”  Ramsay Derry  1981
The Joy Of Cats”  Jo Kittinger  1999
Yummiest Love”  Lisa McCourt, Laura J. Bryant  2009
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

White Horses And Shooting Stars”  David Greer, Chum McLeod  1994
“The Klondike Gold Rush:  Photographs From 1896-1899”  Graham Wilson  1997
“Gold Digger”  Vicki Delany  2009
House Of Dark Shadows”  Robert Liparulo  2008
“Fool’s Gold”  Juliet Blackwell  2013
“Greystones”  Antonia Lamb  1966
Dear Mr. Blueberry”  Simon James  1991
Bluenose Ghosts”  Dr. Helen Creighton  1957
The Little Rabbit Who Wanted Red Wings”  Carolyn Sherwin Bailey  1931
Murder Sees The Light”  Howard Engel  1984
“Hunting For Hidden Gold”  Leslie McFarlane  1928
(12)  “The Black Dudley Murder”  Margery Allingham  1929
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I haven’t done wrap-up pages but can, if you like them.  If you took the time to make fresh posts, or updated your original ones:  you bet I will give you the respect of reading them!  Drop those links off at any “Gentle Spectrums” page or post.  Even if you get to it at a later date, I always read your comments.  Please know, outside of the “Blogspot” captcha and “Disqus” e-mail confirmation barriers, I always wish to comment and show I have visited.  I respond to your posts here if I have to, so be sure to come back and see what I wrote.  :)

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ETHEREAL books we have read

Ethereal 2015

Hello blog visitors and challenge guests!

I have participated in groups often enough to know we feel pressured to finish them up, because too many conclude December 31.  This is precisely when I and others who echo their appreciation, are glad my groups go from February 1 to January 31 each year.  This is a nice time to take stock of books we have been reading in this theme.  Guests who haven’t linked their titles yet may do so at our ETHEREAL review page.  Those who don’t review can list their titles in the comment box of any ETHEREAL post they like:  the home page, review page, and even this one right here.  It’ll be nice for each member to show a sign of life with a comment somewhere.  You might remember, this group has a unique prize for our year-end draw.

Ethereal Levels

Should my blog visitors want to read about intelligent animals, spiritual subjects, fantasy, magick and the downright paranormal;  this is where to look!  My titles will bring up the end.  It looks like I blew past 68 books in this theme, which translates into reaching the top level that I call “The Soul“!  With the animals of children’s literature making this easy to attain, I should provide another level.  As much as I love reading entirely about spirits, I have done a wonderful job with other subjects and syles.  My reviews for my titles, at the bottom of this message, can be read through this blog’s alphabetized review menu.  See the very top of this webpage.  My menu for Canadian authors are self-explanatory.  The menu entitled “Mine” contains every one I have written.

Before you to browse the literature we have handed in so far, I am happy to confirm I will keep running ETHEREAL in 2016, as well as MY KIND OF MYSTERY, GENTLE SPECTRUMS…. and a new one;  turning my RIEDEL Fascination trio into a quartet!  It will be just as flexible and undemanding as its sister groups.  You may sign-up for existing groups right now, because from now on, joining consists of an e-mail!  I will send members a note when there is information, a prize event, or relevant post.  As always, you decide if you’re interested.  The important difference is:  never again will something fall flat, because every member didn’t know about it.  As quick as I finish, there will be a fresh description & linky page and new review page to accompany it.  I have a beautiful new logo that will catch new people’s eyes!  I finished putting my name on it and can show it to you!

I was surprised by hurdles in 2015:  people creating posts but not linking-up to tell me they had joined.  Writing reviews without using our review page.  Getting information to people was a chore because I’m on slow speed, dial-up internet.  There I was, crawling to everyone’s blog, searching for a spot to leave information!  Contests are futile if at least half my participants aren’t involved.  Heartfelt discussion topics went without comments, clarification information unseen by those who should see it.  I wasted half an hour per person, getting unanswered comments to go through at “Blogspot”.  I am forced to stop attempting to comment there.  I’ll give it a try if folks assure me they have captcha verification turned off.  You understand I want to visit your blogs.  I will reply to you at mine;  be sure to look there.

All of my 2016 reading challenges will be revealed shortly!  Since you join by sending an e-mail, it doesn’t matter if my pages aren’t ready and your blog posts needn’t be written yet, either!  If you already know you would like to join, please e-mail:  ALYSHAEB{at}hotmail{dot}com.  Let me know:  “I am joining ETHEREAL / MY KIND OF MYSTERY / GENTLE SPECTRUMS in 2016“.  When my pages are up, we will link your posts to each sign-up list.  Spreading the word about my challenges, with a blog post by you, continues to be needed and appreciated.

Are you ready for a preview?  I hope you love it.  Ta da!
Here is the beautiful new banner for ETHEREAL 2016!!!!  Yours sincerely, Carolyn.



~ Hazellie Wong ~
“The Eagle And The Rose”  Rosemary Altea
“A Beginner’s Guide To Tarot”  Kathleen Olmstead
“The Elements Of Tarot”  A.T. Mann
“78 Degrees Of Wisdom”  Rachel Pollack
“The Last Lecture”  Randy Pausch

~ Brandy @ Brandy’s Bustlings ~
Into The Land Of The Unicorns” Bruce Coville
A Discovery Of Witches” Deborah Harkness
Shadow Of Night” Deborah Harkness

~ Nina (Topcho) ~
Charlotte’s Soul”  Danny Estes

~ Ms. Nose In A Book ~
The Magic Strings Of Frankie Presto”  Mitch Albom
Soul Retrievers”  David Burton
The Phoenix Born”  Kaitlyn Davis
Taking Leaps And Finding Ghosts”  Janet DeLee
Sapphire:  The Shielded Realms”  Elayne Griffith
The Invasion Of The Tearling”  Erika Johansen
In A Dark Wood”  Joseph Luzzi
A Reunion Of Ghosts”  Judith Claire Mitchell
Uprooted”  Naomi Novik
Between Gods”  Alison Pick
Phoenica Rising:  Keeper Of The Light”  Caroline Quigley
Scrap”  Emory Sharplin
The Complete Maus”  Art Speigelman
Dragonwitch”  Anne Elisabeth Stengl
Wildalone”  Krassi Zourkova

~ AMS @ Reckless Indulgence ~
Prometheus Bound”  Aeschylus
In Search Of Lost Dragons”  Elian Black’Mor
Wolf’s-Own: Ghost, #1”  Carole Cummings
In Despair (Princes Of The Blood #3)”  Megan Derr
Masks And Mirrors (Weir Chronicles #2)”  Sue Duff
Mind The Gap, V1: Intimate Strangers”  Jim McCann
When Ryan Came Back”  Devon McCormack
The Elf And Shoemaker”  M.L. Rhodes
Wild Cats, #1”  Muhammad Tauhidul Iqbal Sampad
Silver Diamond (v.20)”  Sugiura Shiho
Silver Diamond (v.21)”  Sugiura Shiho
The Specific Heat Capacity Of Love”  Old Xian & Moss

~ Carolyn, your RIEDEL Fascination hostess ~
(1) “Tempest In The Tea Leaves”  Kari Lee Townsend 2011
(2) “The Cat Who Played Brahms”  Lilian Jackson Braun 1987
(3) “A Novena For Murder”  Sister Carol Anne O’Marrie 1984
(4) “Dyeing Wishes”  Molly MacRae 2013
(5) “Aunt Dimity Beats The Devil”  Nancy T. Atherton 2000
(6) “The Wishing Tree”  Ruth Chew 1980
(7) “The Half-A-Moon Inn”  Paul Fleischman 1980
(8) “Astrology For Cats”  Traudl & Walter Reiner 1991
(9) “Marshy Winter”  Ed Golin, Jerry Maryniuk 1993
(10) “Body Of Intution”  Claire Daniels 2002
(11) “House Of Dark Shadows”  Robert Liparulo 2008
(12) “Fool’s Gold”  Juliet Blackwell 2013
(13) “Tom’s Midnight Garden”  Philippa Pearce 1958
(14) “The Ghost Of Thomas Kempe”  Penelope Lively 1973
(15) “When Midnight Comes”  Carol Beach York 1979
(16) “Charmed”  Barbara Bretton 2011
(17) “A Vision In Velvet”  Juliet Blackwell 2014
(18) “Aesop’s Fables”  George Fyler Townsend 1846
(19) “The Unmasking Of ‘Ksan”  Eric Wilson 1986
(20) “Wish Upon A Unicorn”  Vicki Blum 1999
(21) “Through The Door”  Jodi McIsaac 2012
(22) “The Shadow Unicorn”  Vicki Blum 2000
(23) “The Summer Tree”  Guy Gavriel Kay 1984
(24) “The Wandering Fire”  Guy Gavriel Kay 1986
(25) “Canadian Hauntings”  Michael Norman, Beth Scott 1994
(26) “Rescue Dogs: Crime & Rescue Canines In Canadian Rockies”  Dale Portman 2003
(27) “Animal Heroes”  Karleen Bradford 1995
(28) “A Promise Is A Promise”  Michael Kusugak 1988
(29) “Hide And Sneak”  Michael Kusugak 1992
(30) “White Horses And Shooting Stars”  David Greer, C McLeod 1994
(31) “The Boat Who Wouldn’t Float”  Farley Mowat 1969
(32) “Witchery Hill”  Welwyn Wilton Katz 1984
(33) “Haunted Canada: True Ghost Stories”  Pat Hancock 2003
(34) “The Castle In The Attic”  Elizabeth Winthrop 1985
(35) “Look For Me By Moonlight”  Mary Downing Hahn 1995
(36) “Spinning In Her Grave”  Molly MacRae 2014
(37) “How To Tail A Cat”  Rebecca M. Hale 2012
(39) “Watcher In The Woods”  Robert Liparulo 2008
(40) “Time For Bed”  Mem Fox, Jane Dyer 1993
(41) “Danse Macabre”  Stephen King 1981
(42) “A Haunting Is Brewing”  Juliet Blackwell 2014
(43) “The Snail’s Spell”  Joanne Ryder, Lynne Cherry 1982
(44) “Does It Float?”  Lisa Ann Marsoli, A Devaney 2005
(45) “The New House Villain”  Margaret Mahey 1987
(46) “The Evening Walk”  Joanne Ryder, Julie Durrell 1985
(47) “Advent Of Dying”  Sister Carol Anne O’Marie 1986
(48) “Christopher Robin Leads An Expotition”  Alan Alexander Milne 1926
(49) “Dear Mr. Blueberry”  Simon James 1991
(50) “Haunted Harbours”  Steve Vernon 2006
(51) “Bluenose Ghosts”  Dr. Helen Creighton 1957
(52) “The Little Rabbit Who Wanted Red Wings”  Carolyn Sherwin Bailey 1931
(53) “The Easter Story”  Heather Amery, Norman Young 1998
(54) “Secrets & Mysteries Of The World”  Sylvia Browne 2005
(55) “Micawber”  John Lithgow, C.F. Payne 2002
(56) “Paddington At The Station”  Michael Bond 1976
(57) “Murder Buys A T-Shirt”  Christy Fifield 2012
(58) “Jonah And A Very Big Fish”  Sunny Griffin, Yacoba 1994
(59) “The Haunting Of Maddie Prue”  Alfred Silver 2000
(60) “Ghost House”  Paul Kropp 2003
(61) “The Four Musicians”  Brothers Grimm 1819
(62) “Marsupial Sue”  John Lithgow, Jack E. Davis 2011
(63) “Haunted Pets”  Allan Zullo 1995
“The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid Of”  Linda Williams, Megan Lloyd 1986
(65) “Usborne True Ghost Stories”  Paul Dowswell 2008
(66) “Bambi Gets Lost”  Arthur G. Miller 1941
(67) “The House On Tradd Street”  Karen White 2008
(68) “The Haunting Of Maddy Clare”  Simone St. James 2012

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