Gentle Spectrums 2017



Happy new year!  Welcome to GENTLE SPECTRUMS 2017!
If you are new, I am pleased to tell you how we got started.  If you are returning, it makes me happy that you enjoy yourselves.  I am very proud to reveal that for the first time, this is a logo from my own photography!  I shot this gorgeous spring scene at Oak Hammock Marsh, Manitoba in May 2006.  It is called “Water Beauty“.  A similar scene became one of the earliest greeting cards in my own collection, which are a prize option.  :)

I have played word-matching games over the years.  A favourite category was colours and I was inspired to create my own theme, after noticing many of my books have colour titles.  The popular way was to fulfill one hue per year, which meant holding off a lot of literature.  I love the challenge of choosing from my collection creatively, via eclectic categories.  All of my themes encourage adding as many books as we can.

There are two games, which can be played independently.  You don’t need to do both and the same books in “Limitless Palette” can be used for one of the “Gentle Subjects”.



The first are the colours.  The only picky part is to please use colour hues.  “Sky” or “cherry” by themselves aren’t colours:  we need the blue and red. It is already very flexible, that we repeat any colours as many times as you can find them.  We also include these well-known colour associations.

Carolyn’s upcoming examples: “The Hot Pink Farmouse”  David Handler  2002
“Shades Of Earl Grey”  Laura Childs  2003



The second game is a list I vary a little from year to year, based on how broadly we can be creative and how much we enjoy them.  Please know that hitting as many catetories as you can is all right.  Having a quota is irrelevant because if you couldn’t find books for certain subjects, it is likely that you are doubling up or quadrulpling other subjects.  They are normally about finding book titles containing some form of these categories but a few, which I note, will allow the book to simply be about those subjects, or related to them by authorship.  When I show them below, I will include examples of books I might read, to give you a feel for our games.

A note about a new “GENTLE SUBJECTS“, called “Is The Third A Charm?“!  A few years ago I thought about a challenge on this but a category will do!  I find my third books by an author, or of a series telling.  Sometimes at or after the third, quality dips.  Maybe we tire of a series, maybe authors have a lazy moment.  Try to notice:  if you reach book three by an author, or of a series and it is still great; that is special.  Authors taking a nosedive on or after book three are Susan Wittig Albert and Madelyn Alt, whom I no longer read and Victoria Abbott and Molly MacRae, whom I will excuse.  Simone St. James, Juliet Blackwell, Howard Engel, Eric Wright, and Nancy Atherton dip produce many that I like better than one or two of their others but this is natural.  My discovery is that the first shift, of longstanding authors, is often at or after book three.  I hope you derive pleasure from the fresh categories and those I kept this time around.  Let the unveiling begin!


Historic people, content, places, symbols, books set in or of 1967 and older.
Examples:  “The Novice’s Tale”  Margaret Frazer  1992,
“Lost Among The Living”  Simone St. James  2016

(02)  FOOD
Example:  “Sweet Expectations”  Mary Ellen Taylor  2015,
“The Bordeaux Betrayal”  Ellen Crosby  2008

(03)  THE SKY
Elements by day or night, astronomy, spiritual terms.
Examples: “Street Of The Five Moons”  Elizabeth Peters  1978,
“Tears Of The Moon”  Nora Roberts  2000

Titles do not need to match this category.  Canadian authors or features will do.
Stronger content than Canada as a brief setting.
Example:  “The Night Travellers”  Sandra Birdsell  1982

Examples:  “The Thai Amulet”  Lyn Hamilton  2003,
“Legend Of The Jade Dragon”  Jasmine Galenorn  2004

(06)  MUSIC
Musical words / names do not need to appear.  Books may be about music, musicians, and authored by them.
Example: “Backstage Passes”  Angela Bowie  1993
“The Bells Of Freedom”  Dorothy Gilman  1963

Titles assocated with “three”.  A third volume, or your third book with an author.  In a series, it could be any volume if it is your third sojourn with that author.
Comment on whether it is a dip or a rise!
Example:  “Voices After Midnight”  Richard Peck  1989

Example:  “Garden Spells”  Sarah Addison Allen  2007

Examples:  “Mystery Of The Gulls”  Phyllis A. Whitney  1951,
“Beauty Tips From Moose Jaw”  Will Ferguson  2004

Examples:  “Cloaked In Malice”  Annette Blair  2012,
“The Roman Hat Mystery”  Ellery Queen  1929


~ JOIN US! ~
(1)  Please create a GENTLE SPECTRUMS post or page (all my groups may be combined) and e-mail me with that URL

(2)  Name the groups you are joining, which GENTLE SPECTRUMS games you are targeting, and where you are.  It is fun to acquaint our peers.

I gladly answer questions here or by e-mail:  RIEDELFascination(at)Gmail(dot)com. Goodreads takes several screens to arrive at messages and it is hard to get comments onto Blogspot.  Please e-mail or comment here, instead with Goodreads messages, or counting on Blogspot to let me continue a conversation.  I am on dial-up internet.


(1)  There is a review page at the ready all year, which is alphabetized,  Please follow the entry format and everyone can easily browse authors.  Members often read the same books in each year.

(2)  If you aren’t a review-writer:  finish a few titles and list them in the comment box of any GENTLE SPECTRUMS webpage.  If you read only about a book a month, by all means update us one by one.

(3)  Another alternative is directing us to a list or a write-up you do your own way;  again using any GENTLE SPECTRUMS comment box.  All that matters is that you are compelled to stay in touch.


I run February 1 to January 31.  Heavy readers are too busy to finish reviews until January.  I encourage hosts to shift one month, that makes a helpful change.  While the old way is on-going, you are welcome to use January to December but know you don’t need to close my groups yet.  Enjoy Christmas.

People consider challenges in December, so a post for my groups is important and a Twitter shout-out if you can.  I only use WordPress and Goodreads.  A great boost is telling folks you notice reading stuff that fits, or in similar challenges.  There are many more readers who could be stampeding this way.  Let’s help them find us.

Goodreads is handy.  A group for all challenge news is GENTLE SPECTRUMS and to chat too.  As long as we are amiable, topics are limitless.  Pet pictures, birthdays, lending a shoulder for hard times, books….  you are my community.


By December, e-mail me to be in the year-end draw.
I don’t declare “Canada only”:  the nice array of gifts is for all!  Electronic donations are great but I value options for adult and physical book-readers like me.  I remember wincing about “young adult” fare.  If you don’t fancy what’s on my second-hand book list, there are neat other things:  postcards, my photo prints and greeting cards, CDs, plant seeds!

If there were fewer than 10 per group, I would hold one year-end draw.  If membership and our finances surge, I’ll try going back to a draw for each.  I could approach publishers with a 20+ person following.  There is a prize from me at least.  :)  People interested in supplying swag:  please do e-mail me.  RIEDELFascination(at)Gmail(dot)com.


I always answer you.  I do not abide hosts not visiting posts and showing enthusiasm for comments.  I am a writer who loves knowing I have reached people.  Every member of my groups is treated like gold.

Our review page is set year-round, however I strive for stronger contact.  My four great themes:  CELTIC COASTS, ETHEREAL, MY KIND OF MYSTERY, and GENTLE SPECTRUMS assure there is something to write about every month or so.

I will e-mail when posts relate to us.  Participation can be as busy or private as you prefer but no more riddles and photo opportunities that only two people notice.  This is all there is to it!  :)  Join, keep the review page and comment boxes humming, and chat about my articles.  Make yourselves at home!  Sincerely, Carolyn.