The big thrill has been The Merry Misogynist, by Colin Cotterill. It's the most recent Dr. Siri mystery, and I think it's the best one since the first, maybe even the best one period. There's a supernatural thread that runs through the series, and in some books it's a little overwhelming--extended dream sequences, drug trips, and spirit world adventures generally make for a bit of a slog in my opinion. Dr. Siri's are more fun than most, but eventually I want to get back to corrupt bureaucrats and cranky villagers.
This most recent book is great. It's got a dash of the supernatural, but it by no means dominates the story. It's clear which threads of the plot are major and which are minor, and it's an all-around satisfying (if light) mystery. Oodles of fun.
I've also been reading Betsy-Tacy and Tib, which is the second of the Betsy-Tacy books. It's very sweet, though really a little kid book. I suspect I'll read it to Adam when he's bigger--though the characters are all girls, none of their adventures are particularly girlie. I'm interested in reading how the series evolves--it follows the girls as they grow up, and matures with them. I've heard that, after the little kid ones, the high school one, Betsy was a Junior, is the best. I'm not sure if I'll skip ahead or try to read on through.
Stargirl, by Jerry Spinelli, is another one I've just finished. It's a very standard-seeming book about a free-thinking high school girl who's in touch with herself and not susceptible to whe whims of the crowd, and the boy who loves her but can't handle her individuality. It's a little on the after-school-special side--a story for another generation, where the quirky girl is startling. If it was a period piece, something more from the '70s, I'd get it more, but it's more modern, and so feels clunky. What I will grant it, though, is that it leaves me seriously wanting to send anonymous cards to my neighbors and strangers I pass in the grocery store, just to cheer them up.
The Dream Maker's Magic had all the usual Sharon Shinn magic, the telling of small details of life, the person transformations. Loved it. Also Caroline Cooney's They Never Came Back, which is a small, personally told story about the mystery of a girl whose parents fled fraud charges and left her behind. It felt slight, but I enjoyed it; one of those books that doesn't really transcend the fact that it's intended for young adults, but does its job.
That's what I was doing while I wasn't blogging last week. Let's see what happens during this next period of slacking!