Saturday, April 2, 2016

B is for Books

Me, alone. Life after loss.

There is a great deal of difference between an eager man who wants to read a book and a tired man who wants a book to read. ~ G. K. Chesterton

During most of 2015, I'm afraid I was that tired woman wanting a book to read. So I read mostly mysteries, books that didn't require much of me. But I read a few really good ones too.  The author of the following three books, Leif GW Persson, is an award-winning Swedish author and Sweden's most renowned psychological profiler.

Between Summer's Longing And
Winter's End

Another Time Another Life

Free Falling As If In A Dream

Each book in the trilogy has this after the title: "A Story Of A Crime." The crime is the still unsolved murder of Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme, who was killed on a Stockholm street in 1986. 

In each book hints are dropped, clues appear, things happen that, at the time you read them, you, the reader, will have no idea that they will all tie together in the end. And fictionally solve the murder of the Prime Minister in the final book. 

You may just have to be Swedish to enjoy these books the way I did, but then the most cringe worthy character, a detective by the name of Backstrom, now has his own TV show here in the US. Set in Oregon, but still..... 

The Devil In The White City

This book tells the story of how architects, engineers, construction workers and others accomplished a miracle of sorts as they designed and built the White City for the Chicago World's Fair (Colombian Exposition) of 1893 in record time. The white buildings were magnificent and there are many photos in the book. I was perhaps most fascinated by the many inventions that were displayed there for the first time, the Ferris Wheel, a moving walkway, moving images; there were conflicts between providers of AC vs. DC electricity, and so much more. Then there was a devil lurking in the outskirts of the White City; a sick, sick killer, who presented himself as an outstanding, respectable citizen. Erik Larson is a very good writer, someone who can tackle a large project, mix it up, and make the end result a fabulous reading experience. 

West of Sunset

West of Sunset is a novel, not a biography, that brings Hollywood of the 1930s back to life in the best way. It is the story of F. Scott Fitzgerald's final years when he worked as a screenwriter in Hollywood to pay the bills for his wife Zelda's hospital stay and their daughter's schooling in New York. This was the time he met and fell in love with Sheilah Graham, the gossip columnist. It was also the time when he worked on his last novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon, unfinished at the time of his death. Stewart O'Nan is one of my favorite writers and he does an excellent job of bringing back the Golden Era in Hollywood and the happy/sad last years of Fitzgerald's life.

And finally there was The Girl On The Train, by Paula Hawkins, a page turner if there ever was one. 


  1. Hi Inger - these are an excellent range of books for us to read and note ... getting away into a mystery and losing one's thoughts for a while - so important at certain times in life - a relief. Some of these look as though there's food for thought here ... and I'll be interested to read them in due course. Cheers and with thoughts - Hilary

  2. I listened to Girl on a Train on audible. Loved it. They used three different readers for the main characters. Excellent. I need to read something by Leif Persson and Erik Larson.
    Glad to see you're doing the challenge!
    Mary at Play off the Page

    1. Tried to find your blog on Google+ but couldn't. Thanks for stopping by though. It's always good to see you.

  3. i am the eager woman always always wanting to read a book. reading is my most favorite thing in all the world. and has been since i was five years old. I read every day of my life now that i am retired. when working i only read on week ends. now i gobble books by 3 or 4 per week... i have tried a few books by Swedish authors and could not read them, but i found one that was so good i read all there in the series one right behind the other. if i can find his name i will send it to you. will have to look through my kindle on line.

  4. I can honestly say I have never read these books that you mention and I am an avid reader. I should be, I have four bookshelves just stuffed full. Ha! I am a new found author myself. Great post!
    (when you visit my blog just copy and paste your site.)

  5. Books are such good company, even in tough times when something light can be a filler in the days and weeks. I love books, always have. Your words show sincere reading and much thought.

  6. Good book reviews, Inger. Books saved me during my first year without Richard!! I also read a bit about grieving. My favorite book was by Pat Bertram, a fellow blogger, "Grief: The Great Yearning" This book spoke of the exact things I was going through. I still reference it at times. I also read The Great White City in 2015 and The Girl on the Train this year!!

  7. A great list of books, and I've seen one of the Swedish detective shows and loved it. Detectives are the same the world over, and mysteries and murder can be anywhere. Reading is one of my forms of escapism and what we choose tells us what feels comfortable at any given time.

  8. Those Persson novels sound interesting, and I too enjoyed Devil in the White City. I like mystery series set in many countries, it adds a bit of zest and local color to the novels and they are great escapism from daily life. Have a lovely spring dear lady.

  9. I limit myself to the books I can read with Amazon's unlimited program. I read everyday and it's mostly smut. I can't be the only one?

    I'm visiting from the A to Z Challenge.

    Shelly @

    1. Tried to leave comment but was unable. How I wish everyone would just have a simple address where you just leave your comment and be done with it. Anyhow, I did try.

  10. Very intriguing reviews Inger. West of Sunset sounds like one I would like. I'll check my library. Books are the most marvelous escape there is. So glad you had so many entertaining ones to dive into.

  11. You have a great selection of books and good reviews to get people interested. It's so fortunate that you kept busy reading books during the first difficult year alone.

  12. Looks like some good books there to read.

  13. Amazing! I have read "Girl on the Train", enjoyed it. Now have "Between Summer's Longing and Winter's end" waiting on our bookcase!

    Enjoying your A to Z!

  14. Thank you for the recommendations. Books are such friends at certain times. Not unlike our dogs...

  15. Of the books you mention, the only title that rings a bell is Girl on a Train. That one is sitting on my Kindle, in the queue to be read during 2016.

    Keith Channing A-Zing from

  16. Sounds great that you have wonderful time with books.They are best companion when we are lonely...


Thanks for leaving a comment.. ~~ Inger


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