Thursday, May 21, 2009

On the Book Cart

Only four romances on the cart this week, but three of them are new additions to some favorite series. Mary Balogh’s historical Seducing an Angel continues the story of the Huxtable family with the tale of Stephen’s courtship of a lady accused of murder. Deirdre Martin’s contemporary With a Twist reintroduces us to Natalie Bocuse, an oh-so-chic Frenchwoman in New York who first made an appearance in Just a Taste. Christy Reece brings us along on another suspenseful mission with the operatives of Last Chance Rescue in Return to Me. An author new to our collection is Christine Lynxwiler, whose book The Reluctant Cowgirl is a western themed inspirational.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Of Books and Blogs

After announcing the arrival of Beyond Heaving Bosoms in a previous post, I realized that I had never previously mentioned or posted links to the blogs I read regularly. Since romance novels never get a lot of ink in the standard “collection development” tools like Library Journal, I have to use other sources for reviews and announcements. Fortunately, there are a lot of readers and librarians who have been at this a lot longer than I have, and whose knowledge has been invaluable to me since I was appointed Romance Maven and General Paperback Goddess shortly after arriving here in Voorheesville. Two blogs that I like to read regularly are Smart Bitches, Trashy Books and The Misadventures of…Super Librarian. SBTB is brought to you by Candy and Sarah, the women behind Beyond Heaving Bosoms, both avid readers who claim to have real lives beyond their blog. They may, but it’s hard to imagine given how much ground they cover on a regular basis in the blog. Super Librarian is authored by Wendy, who is a real life collection development librarian in Orange County, California. Wendy has two things I envy even more than the large readership of her blog – a job dealing with adult fiction all day, and the chance to do it in a climate much, much nicer than Albany. All that aside, if you are looking for reviews and recommendations, try either or both of these blogs.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Beyond Heaving Bosoms…

The Smart Bitches Guide to Romance Novels. Recently arrived in our new Non-Fiction paperback collection, Beyond Heaving Bosoms is a smart, funny and thorough look at the romance genre authored by the women who brought you the Smart Bitches, Trashy Books blog. Sarah Wendell and Candy Tan have been reviewing books and just generally emoting on the state of the genre since 2005. Their blog is a lot of fun, and I am looking forward to delving into the book for more of the same…

Thursday, May 7, 2009

On the Book Cart

Only a few items are on the cart this week. The latest addition in Mary Balogh’s historical Huxtable family saga, At Last Comes Love, has arrived. Under Her Skin, the first of Susan Mallery’s contemporary Lone Star Sisters series is also here. The other contemporaries are the suspense novels Rescue Me by Christy Reece, and Whispered Lies by Sherrilyn Kenyon and Dianna Love. Whispered Lies is another BAD Agency novel from the team who wrote Phantom in the Night. The lone paranormal is Gena Showalter’s The Vampire’s Bride, a tale of Atlantis.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

A Perfectly Delightful Poison

The Perfect Poison
By Amanda Quick

I have to admit up front that I am a big fan of the Arcane Society novels, both contemporary and historical. While I like some better than others, I tend to like them all in general, and The Perfect Poison is no exception. Heroine Lucinda Bromley is the kind of brainiac-with-a-sense-humor who always appeals to me. She has the added appeal of being suspected of poisoning her feckless fiancĂ© in Borgia-like fashion by slipping a deadly substance into his drink using a ring designed for the purpose. Although we know Lucinda is innocent, the rest of polite society does not, and she is relegated to its fringes. A gifted botanist whose psychic abilities allow her to sense and manipulate the energies of plants, Lucinda sometimes works with Scotland Yard to help them detect particularly tricky cases of poisoning. It is on one such case that she comes across a poison that could only have been made with a plant recently stolen from her conservatory. Given her history, Lucinda fears she will be implicated in the crime, and so she calls in Caleb Jones, psychic investigator and direct descendent of the Arcane Society founder Sylvester Jones. The members of the Jones family are investigating a few mysteries of their own as they try to track down the shadowy group that is attempting to recreate the legendary Founder’s Formula. Caleb, whose gift is seeing patterns where others see only random facts or coincidences, suspects that the two cases are related. Lucinda and Caleb join forces, tracking down thieves, murderers and the threads of an elusive conspiracy.

I think that The Perfect Poison may be my favorite of all the historical Arcane Society novels. I really enjoyed the botany aspect, and the fact that the bespectacled and studious heroine was no slouch in the tough broad department. Caleb’s single mindedness and eccentricities were also appealing; he is very masculine without being overbearing. Both plot twists and subtle humor abound, and the cast of secondary characters is great. I was happy to see the return of Lady Milden, the Society’s first professional matchmaker. All in all, this is another fun, fast paced read from my favorite librarian-turned-author, and I am already looking forward to the next Arcane Society book.