Friday, December 27, 2013

Book Review: Just One Evil Act by Elizabeth George

I was asked by Dutton books if I'd like to review Elizabeth George's newest book "Just One Evil Act". Although I'd never read a book by this incredibly popular author, I had heard great things from one of my very good friends, Sherry. Sherry and I share a love of the mystery genre. We pass books back and forth and sometimes even coordinate who's buying what new book in a series so there isn't an overlap with an author we're both crazy about. About a week or so before I got this Dutton offer Sherry had lent me three Elizabeth George books, explaining that she's an American author who writes novels set in Great Britain. She also has a British style of writing. Now I was excited, I had four NEW novels, I could really get to know the characters and story line!

I started the latest tome (I mean I had been asked to review it after all, lol) and got about ten pages in. I realized I really, really wished I knew more about the characters NOW. Luckily, it was that night that I noticed the BBC had started airing the television series "The Inspector Lynley Mysteries" on our local channel. What luck!! I put the series on permanent tape and watched my first Lynley mystery right then and there. Loving the Lynley character and mystery series was a shoe in, even though I usually don't go for the British-type authors and mystery series, I found Lynley especially likable and his sidekick Sargent Havers a spectacular foil for his character. YAY, I had a new series of which I knew there were at least eighteen mysteries to devour. Happy Camper Here!

Ok, so I picked up this 700+ page book again. Now that I knew the general outline of the characters, I was ready to really enjoy a good mystery. Unfortunately, knowing who Lynley/Havers were didn't improve my reading enjoyment. It isn't the characters who make this book unenjoyable or even that it's mystery is convoluted with many twists and turns and extra characters, it's that this book could use a  really good editor. Seriously, two hundred pages could easily be cut from this book and no story or plot line would be affected. It's a shame. After reading "Just One Evil Act" I went and read reviews on her other previous books, and then, much unlike me, I read reviews on THIS book. I have to admit I was relieved to find both that her other books have great reviews generally and this one seems to almost universally be thought of as long winded. 

I hate writing bad reviews. I want to support authors. I can't imagine how much effort it must take to write even one book, but to keep a series interesting, on track and lively must be doubly difficult. I therefore find it hard to admit just how annoying I found reading this book to be. I was actually yelling at the book many times, telling the author to GET ON WITH THE STORY ALREADY!! 

The story mainly takes place in Italy with Havers as the main character trying to solve the kidnapping of young Hadiyyah, her friend Azhar's daughter. The story idea and the look into Havers' character was the thing that initially appealed to me about this, the eighteenth book in George's Inspector Lynley series. I was excited to learn more about Barbara Havers, and I did throughout this book, but it was a painful trip. I slogged through way to many descriptions of the surroundings to get the wanted nuggets of information. One of the other huge mistakes, in my humble opinion, was the use of so many Italian sayings without an english translation. I found myself thinking I should be reading this book with a Italian to English dictionary on side. 


I guess what I'm saying is if you're thinking of trying an Elizabeth George book, don't try this one first, start at the beginning of the series. She's well worth reading, this book just isn't the one to start with. On the other hand, if you're a die-hard fan like my friend Sherry you're probably gonna have to slog through seven hundred pages, if just to get the information out of it so you can get to the next book that I'm sure George will be writing in 2014. This may be a two out of five star book for me but I'm gonna continue watching the Lynley mysteries on TV (it's on tonight, YAY!) and I'm also going to read those other three borrowed George books. I  really believe the author is worth a second (and even third) look. Everyone deserves a second chance, right?  Right!

Wishing everyone a very Happy New Years! YAAY, it's almost 2014!!!!!


Best,




If you're looking for this week's APR just click here.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Artist's Play Room #86

**Please note that there will be NO APR throughout the month of December. I think we all need a break and everyone is usually rediculously busy with Christmas, family, baking and celebrating, not to mention SHOPPING, hehehe. So, no challenges for four weeks. The Artist's Play Room will return on Saturday January 4th, 2014. (Holy COW does it feel weird typing 2014!!)**

Now I return you to your regularly scheduled program already in progress, ;o)

Please scroll down for the newest Artist's Play Room Challenge and to enter your artwork throughout this upcoming week.

If you haven't read the rules & guidelines, please go here. If you've landed here after this challenge has been completed but would like to participate in a current or future Artist's Play Room Challenge, just either click on the APR button in the sidebar or click here and you'll be taken to the latest APR Challenge!

Are you having trouble using the Mr. Linky to add your submissions to APR? Well here's some help! Just click on HELP and you'll be taken to my Linky Help Page. Cool, huh? I've got your back!

So we need a new challenge theme don't we? My aunt suggested a great theme for this week. Let's draw, sketch or use charcoal to make art, K? I guess that means putting down your paints and getting out your pencils, hehehe. Draw/sketch whatever you want or for those of you who think you just can't draw then you'll have to think outside the box for this challenge, now I can't wait to see what you'll come up with. :o)
Beautiful sketch of a gownTree House drawingSepia charcoal drawing
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Saturday, November 23, 2013

Artist's Play Room #85

Please scroll down for the newest Artist's Play Room Challenge and to enter your artwork throughout this upcoming week.

If you haven't read the rules & guidelines, please go here. If you've landed here after this challenge has been completed but would like to participate in a current or future Artist's Play Room Challenge, just either click on the APR button in the sidebar or click here and you'll be taken to the latest APR Challenge!

Are you having trouble using the Mr. Linky to add your submissions to APR? Well here's some help! Just click on HELP and you'll be taken to my Linky Help Page. Cool, huh? I've got your back!

Ok, a few years ago I used to participate in a weekly challenge where we used Flickr to choose pictures that represented how we were feeling that week, it was amazing how this weekly assignment captured ME. I was thinking how much I had enjoyed particitating in that challenge so I thought we could do a "SELF PORTRAIT" theme this week. It can be about you or your art or how you're feeling or whatever you want. You can use a mosaic maker like I did several years ago (to the left, I was in the middle of an artist's block as I recall, lol) or paint up how you're feeling etc. However you want to capture YOU is ok with ME. lol. Have at it peoples, I can't wait to see what you come up with! (for those who want to use a mosaic maker I'd suggest doing the art you want to then uploading it to your flickr account then going here to make your mosaic.)
Mosaic PortraitZachary Rogers self portraitKimberly's Abstract
self portrait
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Saturday, November 16, 2013

Artist's Play Room #84

Please scroll down for the newest Artist's Play Room Challenge and to enter your artwork throughout this upcoming week.

If you haven't read the rules & guidelines, please go here. If you've landed here after this challenge has been completed but would like to participate in a current or future Artist's Play Room Challenge, just either click on the APR button in the sidebar or click here and you'll be taken to the latest APR Challenge!

Are you having trouble using the Mr. Linky to add your submissions to APR? Well here's some help! Just click on HELP and you'll be taken to my Linky Help Page. Cool, huh? I've got your back!

Do you know what complimentary colors are? You probably do, but let me explain for everyone since that's our theme for this week. Complimentary colors are colors that are opposite each other on the color wheel...
So this means that yellow and violet are complimentary colors, as are blue and orange, red and green, red-violet and yellow-green and so on. So, this week, choose your complimentary colors from the color wheel and go hog wild showing us just why they're so complimentary to each other. It'll be great, all those color combinations to choose from. This week's APR will be bursting with wonderful color!
Yellow-VioletFuchsia-LimeOrange-Blue
Best,




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Saturday, November 9, 2013

Artist's Play Room #83

Please scroll down for the newest Artist's Play Room Challenge and to enter your artwork throughout this upcoming week.

If you haven't read the rules & guidelines, please go here. If you've landed here after this challenge has been completed but would like to participate in a current or future Artist's Play Room Challenge, just either click on the APR button in the sidebar or click here and you'll be taken to the latest APR Challenge!

Are you having trouble using the Mr. Linky to add your submissions to APR? Well here's some help! Just click on HELP and you'll be taken to my Linky Help Page. Cool, huh? I've got your back!

So we need a new challenge theme don't we? I was thinking about all of you lucky people who are planning a winter getaway, away from the blah weather we have here in North America. As it gets colder I think we all dream of sunny skies, sweet drinks with umbrellas in them and warm sand between our toes. This got me thinking of the beauty of sea shells so why don't we do a theme with that? SEA SHELLS is our theme this week, you can be literal or think outside the box, whatever your artistic heart wants to do. I'll be dreaming of warm vistas as I watch your submissions roll in.
collection of shellsSchnauzer at the BeachSingle Shell
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Saturday, November 2, 2013

Artist's Play Room #82

Please scroll down for the newest Artist's Play Room Challenge and to enter your artwork throughout this upcoming week.

If you haven't read the rules & guidelines, please go here. If you've landed here after this challenge has been completed but would like to participate in a current or future Artist's Play Room Challenge, just either click on the APR button in the sidebar or click here and you'll be taken to the latest APR Challenge!

Are you having trouble using the Mr. Linky to add your submissions to APR? Well here's some help! Just click on HELP and you'll be taken to my Linky Help Page. Cool, huh? I've got your back!

So we need a new challenge theme don't we? I thought this week we could explore the word  "LAUGH". There are so many ways to go about this challenge theme, what makes you laugh? What do you think of when others are laughing? How wonderfully happy do you feel in the middle of a good laugh? So, go about your week and when you laugh you can think about this challenge and just maybe a great creative idea will pop into your head when you least expect it. 

Biscuit the happy poochThe JokerLaughing Face
Best,




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Saturday, October 26, 2013

Artist's Play Room #81

Please scroll down for the newest Artist's Play Room Challenge and to enter your artwork throughout this upcoming week.

If you haven't read the rules & guidelines, please go here. If you've landed here after this challenge has been completed but would like to participate in a current or future Artist's Play Room Challenge, just either click on the APR button in the sidebar or click here and you'll be taken to the latest APR Challenge!

Are you having trouble using the Mr. Linky to add your submissions to APR? Well here's some help! Just click on HELP and you'll be taken to my Linky Help Page. Cool, huh? I've got your back!

I love the look of art that has words written around it. I'm not so great at this kind of art, mainly because as a lefty I think my writing sucks so I'm askeered to try, lol. BUT, I know many of you are awesome at this kind of journal-like art so I thought the rest of us could give it a try and hopefully be inspired by the rest of you masters of it...here are some examples that I've come across.
Dion DiorAngeline FlowersLisa Cheney Jorgensen
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Saturday, October 19, 2013

Artist's Play Room #80

Please scroll down for the newest Artist's Play Room Challenge and to enter your artwork throughout this upcoming week.

If you haven't read the rules & guidelines, please go here. If you've landed here after this challenge has been completed but would like to participate in a current or future Artist's Play Room Challenge, just either click on the APR button in the sidebar or click here and you'll be taken to the latest APR Challenge!

Are you having trouble using the Mr. Linky to add your submissions to APR? Well here's some help! Just click on HELP and you'll be taken to my Linky Help Page. Cool, huh? I've got your back!

Challenge yourself. Yes, you heard me. GO make up your own challenge and do it with gusto. You can literally challenge yourself and choose something you find hard to do or you can choose your own theme as our challenge for this week. Your free this week, hehehe, no structure, just creativity and where your mind will take you on it's artistic journey. Just remember to leave a trail of bread crumbs so you can find your way back to us, hehehe. ;o)

No examples this week,
you gotta be your own kind of creative!

Best,




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