Tag Archives: Harper Lee

Top 10 Tuesday — Books Popular The Year I Was Born

2 Feb

I unintentionally tweaked this week’s Top 10 Tuesday. I checked this week’s challenge before doing research and inadvertently settled on books that were published or were bestsellers the year I was born and that I read at least a few years later 😉 . I will own up to my age by saying that 1960 seems to have been a good year for books! I have included children’s, as well as adult fiction, because I have been an avid reader from the get-go. In a world that is all about the next shiny thing, it is great to see many books that have stood the test of time — at least 60+ years of it.


Do you read books from days gone by?


For more books through the ages, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.


Top Books from 1960

Hawaii was the year’s New York Times number one bestseller. I think this was the first book I ever read by Michener. He was a favorite of mine throughout high school.

The saga of a land from the time when the volcanic islands rose out of the sea to the decade in which they become the 50th state. Michener uses individuals’ experiences to symbolize the struggle of the various races to establish themselves in the islands.


Here are other favorites published in 1960


Are You My Mother? by P.D. Eastman

Green Eggs And Ham by Dr. Seuss


The Clue in The Old Stagecoach by Carolyn Keene

The Island of The Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell


Exodus by Leon Uris

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee


Top Ten Tuesday! — Audiobooks

28 Jun

It’s Freebie Day at Top Ten Tuesday! Thanks to the gals at The Broke And The Bookish who host every week. To find out what other bloggers are sharing today, click HERE.



I love audiobooks! I started listening about 6 years ago when I traveled 4+ hours to my daughter’s college soccer games. They filled the tedious hours of driving alone. I got my husband hooked on audiobooks when we would go on road trips for football games. With Summer in full swing now, I thought it would be good to share my favorites. Audiobooks are perfect for car or plane trips or when you just want to relax and have someone read to you. 🙂 I also listen while exercising and doing chores, basically anytime when it is too cumbersome to hold a book! I went a bit over the top with my list — 20+ books! But I really liked them and just had to share.



While it is important to have a good story, a good reader/narrator is also important for a quality audiobook — timing and voices/accents are key. My husband and I got hooked on Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot mysteries. But just any old narrator will not do; we have to have Hugh Fraser! Lucky for us, a ton of Poirot audiobooks featuring Fraser are available. He does an excellent job in making Poirot come to life. Here are a few of our favorites.


The Christie audiobooks run about 6+ hours, making them a perfect choice for listening with others.

Along with the Christie mysteries, I have listened to some other excellent books. They vary in length, but have a two things in common: excellent stories and excellent narrators. The following have something for everyone — suspense, mystery, history. There is even a classic! Check them out!

The Advocate by Randy Singer, narrated by David Cochran Heath

All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, narrated by Zach Appleman

Center of Gravity by Laura McNeill, narrated by Lisa Larsen

A Cry from The Dust by Carrie Stuart Parks, narrated by Teri Clark Linden


The Curse of Crow Hollow by Billy Coffey, narrated by Gabe Wicks

Cuts Like A Knife by M.K. Gilroy, narrated by Coleen Marlo

Dead Lawyers Tell No Tales by Randy Singer, narrated by Joey Collins

Dubiosity by Christy Barritt, narrated by Joyce Bean


Fear Has A Name by Creston Mapes, narrated by Paul Michael

Longbourn by Jo Baker, narrated by Emma Fielding

Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline, narrated by Jessica Almasy/Suzanne Toren

The Outcast by Jolina Petersheim, narrated by Tavia Gilbert


The Price of Privilege by Jessica Dotta, narrated by Amanda McKnight

The Racketeer by John Grisham, narrated by J.D. Jackson

Sycamore Row by John Grisham, narrated by Michael Beck

Though Waters Roar by Lynn Austin, narrated by Alyssa Bresnahan


To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, narrated by Sissy Spacek

The Traitor’s Wife by Allison Pataki, narrated by Madeleine Maby

Vanished by Irene Hannon, narrated by Celeste Ciulla

Water from My Heart by Charles Martin, narrated by Kevin Stilwell


What about you?

Do you listen to audiobooks?


Audiobook Review: To Kill A Mockingbird

21 May

220px-To_Kill_a_MockingbirdHarper Lee’s Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep south—and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred

One of the best-loved stories of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has been translated into more than forty languages, sold more than forty million copies worldwide, served as the basis for an enormously popular motion picture, and was voted one of the best novels of the twentieth century by librarians across the country. A gripping, heart-wrenching, and wholly remarkable tale of coming-of-age in a South poisoned by virulent prejudice, it views a world of great beauty and savage inequities through the eyes of a young girl, as her father—a crusading local lawyer—risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.


220px-Nelle_Harper_LeeNelle Harper Lee (born April 28, 1926) is an American novelist widely known for her 1960 Pulitzer Prize-winning To Kill a Mockingbird which deals with the racism she observed as a child in her hometown of Monroeville, Alabama. Though Lee only published this single book for half a century, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for her contribution to literature. Lee has received numerous honorary degrees, and declined to speak on each occasion. Lee assisted close friend Truman Capote in his research for the book In Cold Blood (1966).

In February 2015 at age 88, nearly blind and deaf after a 2007 stroke, and after a lifetime of maintaining that she would never publish another novel, Lee a statement through her attorney that “I’m alive and kicking and happy as hell with the reactions of Watchman,” that Lee would publish a second novel, Go Set a Watchman (set to be published on July 14, 2015), written before To Kill a Mockingbird.


My Impressions:

Really?!! I am writing a review of To Kill A Mockingbird? This beloved novel has been the subject of countless literary critiques, reviews, dissertations and high school book reports since its publication 50+ years ago. What could I possibly add? Just that this really is an American classic that accurately depicts the South before the Civil Rights Movement in all its beautiful and ugly glory. The characters of narrator Scout and her father Atticus are some of the best written. This is definitely a must-read, and if you are like me (I had never read it before) you need to put this one at the top of your TBR list. I listened to the audiobook, and Sissy Spacek did an outstanding job giving voice to Scout. Mockingbird is my book club’s May selection, and I look forward to some great discussion. Have you read it? Let us know your thoughts.

Very Highly Recommended.

Audience: teens to adults.

Great for Book Clubs.

To purchase this book, click HERE

(I purchased the audiobook from Audible. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

May Book Club Selections

5 May

This month my book clubs have 2 very different selections. By The Book has picked a mystery to read — Sister Eve, Private Eye by Lynne Hinton. We like suspense a lot, but rarely read a straight mystery. I am looking forward to it. Page Turners is turning again to a classic. This time we are reading To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. We actually had quite a few members who had never read the book! I loved it and anticipate a great discussion. My friend Ruth and I are also reading it with the ladies at the women’s center where we volunteer. Many of them had to read it in high school. We got some to admit they didn’t actually read it then!

Have you read either of these 2 books? Let me know what you think.


691455Sister Eve knows God moves in mysterious ways. And Eve adores a good mystery. Especially a murder.

Two decades into her calling at a New Mexico monastery, Sister Evangeline Divine breaks her daily routine when a police officer appears, carrying a message from her father. Sister Eve is no stranger to the law, having grown up with a police captain turned private detective. She’s seen her fair share of crime—and knows a thing or two about solving mysteries.

But when Captain Jackson Divine needs her to return home and help him recover from surgery, Sister Eve finds herself taking on his latest case.

A Hollywood director has disappeared, and the sultry starlet he’s been running around with isn’t talking. When the missing man turns up dead, Captain Divine’s case escalates into a full-blown murder case, and Sister Eve’s crime-solving instincts kick in with an almost God-given grace.

Soon Sister Eve finds herself soul-searching every step of the way: How can she choose between the vocation in her heart and the job in her blood?


220px-To_Kill_a_MockingbirdThe unforgettable novel of a childhood in a sleepy Southern town and the crisis of conscience that rocked it, To Kill A Mockingbird became both an instant bestseller and a critical success when it was first published in 1960. It went on to win the Pulitzer Prize in 1961 and was later made into an Academy Award-winning film, also a classic.

Compassionate, dramatic, and deeply moving, To Kill A Mockingbird takes readers to the roots of human behavior – to innocence and experience, kindness and cruelty, love and hatred, humor and pathos. Now with over 18 million copies in print and translated into forty languages, this regional story by a young Alabama woman claims universal appeal. Harper Lee always considered her book to be a simple love story. Today it is regarded as a masterpiece of American literature.