Monday, April 18, 2016

April 2016 column

If you read my column last month you might have thought I was losing it. Sorry for my first statement not being very clear. The secretarial position that I did not run for this year was for the Fiber Guild that I have been a part of for the last 5 years. Now I feel better to have that cleared up. And speaking of the Fiber Guild, we are up and running to make our September Fiber Daze event in Mt Vernon be better than ever this year. The guild has grown leaps and bounds this last year and we have so much talent within the guild that it boggles the mind. Our two day event has become the highlight of the year for us. It takes many people to work together to put an event like this on. So I will be reporting much more later on this. I will say that if you want to be a vendor or teach a class the applications are on line now and the deadline is April 15. Website is: then click on Fiber Daze and you can go to the applications.
I am also excited to report that the Neosho Farmers Market is getting geared up to start the first Saturday of May. We hope to have even more vendors than last year and some new surprises for folks. I am looking forward to this weekly event right here in our own back yard, so to speak. The booths will be full of home grown produce or hand made items. Our location will be the same as last year, right across from the library, just a block off the square.
Books, books, books. Have decided to continue to sell my books at half price, since I am only in the shop a couple days a week now. It is working out well to be able to go in when I have time or just need to get a way and weave a couple rugs. Classes are still available to learn to weave.
I have read a mix of books this past month. So here are my picks

Jack McDevitt
It has been a long time since I read a science fiction novel. This one caught my eye, yes, I like pretty covers. The setting is in the future around 2235. We have the caustic journalist, McAllister, and Hutch who is head of the Acadamy, a space flight organization. It also centers around a Senator's 15 year old daughter Amy, who wants to be a pilot one day and also one of the Acadamy's top pilots, Valya. They are on a rountine space flight to place monitors in locations in other solar systems to try to gather information on the Moonriders, (UFO's). But it seems that a dangerous hoax is being played out by someone to scare the public into putting more funding into interstellar research. Lives are put at risk, and some lost, but it all works out in the end. Oh, and the Moonriders are real and very dangerous in a way that no one could imagine. I think I might like to read another of McDevitt's books as it is interesting to think of what the far future might hold for us.
Remember When
Nora Roberts/ J.D. Robb
Before you groan,”no, Not Nora Roberts”, I will have to say that several people have tried to get me to read this series of books by J.D. Robb, AKA Nora Roberts. Roberts has written so many books over the years that they sort of blur to me. But she turned suspense writer under her psudoneum of Robb. This book is acuually two books in one. The first one telling the story of Laine who is owner of a store called Remember When. She buys and sells unique antiques and gift items, and has made a nice home in a small community in the mountains of the Maryland. When a stranger is hit by a car in front of her shop and dies in her arms, her tidy little world starts to fall down around her. She is really the daughter of a small time con man whom she hasn't seen for many years. The stranger turns out to be a good friend of her father who was like her uncle when she was a child. As he dies he tries to tell her something and she realizes who he is. Along comes Max and when he meets Laine the sparks fly. He is a hired PI, trying to locate millions of dollors worth of stolen diamonds. Things get complicated and heated, but in the end by working together they find most of them and in the process uncover Laine's true identity. A realy good romance story that I did enjoy. Then in the second half of the book we change over to J.D. Robb writing in her futuristic suspence, jumping 50 years into the future and Laine and Max are senior citizens by now. The story is about their grand daughter, Samantha living in New York City and the mystery of the remaining diamonds is back. NYPD Lieutenant Eve Dallas is the head of the investigation of the murder of two women with close ties to Samantha. We find the focus of the book now on Eve and her husband Roarke who happens to be wealthy and manages to help her with her cases. It was interesting to see how Robb describes how the future might look in every day things, like transportation, politics, foods, robots, ect.
Since 1995 when the “In Death” series with Eve Dallas was started, to now there are 53 books in this series. Makes you wonder how someone can keep turning out books at this rate.
From WeaverBirds Rugs, formerly Read Again Books

March Column 2016

Feeling like I was spreading myself to thin with family, changing my book store into a weaving studio and keeping up with a very busy fiber guild, I opted to not run for Secretary this year. I was feeling relieved that I could just be a regular member without responsibilities. Well I belong to two Library organizations, Friends of The Library, and Friends of Genealogy of the Library and both have asked me to serve as officers. So don't forget, Wherever you go, There you are!
I have been working hard trying to get a website set up and figure out what I plan to do with this new business venture: Weaver Birds Rugs. Wish me luck. I still have lots of books in the shop so if I am there feel free to stop in.
I have enjoyed several books this past month, and will report on two of them that were favorites.
Dan Brown
Inferno gives us another installment in the life of Robert Langdon, an art historian, and sometimes detective. Previous great books of Brown with this character are The Da Vinci Code, Lost Symbols, and Angles and Demons. Langdon wakes up in Italy with no knowledge how he got there or why. He is treated for amnesia, then finds himself fleeing for his life from the hospital with a young female doctor's assistance. He has lost 36 hours of his memory. As they escape, they are persued by an underground organization and the Italian police. No one to trust. Through their flight, they untangle the mystery of a pending genocide plot. Brown draws the reader along on a long tale with much time spent describing Italian historical sites. I am sure some may be put off by this but I found myself checking my Google app to get a look at what he was talking about. I found the ending to be a surprise I was not expecting at all but actually thought it was perhaps the answer to our over population. You will have to read it yourself.
In The Blood
Lisa Unger
While walking thru the local library for a meeting, I had a little time to kill so ended up browsing. I found a Lisa Unger book I had not read so of course I had to check it out. Like I have no books to read! But I really love Unger's books and have actually gone on line to buy them. She works the twists and plots to really keep you up late at night to read. Liar, liar, pants on fire! Those are the words I always think “I would like to see that” In this case a college senior, Lana finds she has been told so many lies about her life that she no longer knows who she is and the truth may be a real nightmare. Before she starts her graduate work in child psychology she needs to work for the summer so she takes a job babysitting for a manipulative eleven year old boy, thinking this is right up her alley. Then her close friend Beck disappears. Lana finds herself making up stories because she knows she has things in her past that she can not tell about. The one person she thought she could trust betrays her and she finds some lost family she didn't know she had. Have to say I sort of saw that coming, but I liked the suspense she weaves. Unger is a masterful writer of psychological thrillers, and this one does not disappoint.

Colum for February 2016

Do you know where you came from? Many wonder and many seek. I have gotten involved in a group that needs a little boost from the community. It is Genealogy Friends of the Library. They have worked hard to develop local resources for folks who are wanting to explore where they came from. They also pay for the Ancestry web site that is free to any one to use at the library. Membership it is only $10 a year and you will be kept up to date on any events such as the Lock Down they do from time to time to have the library a whole evening as late as folks want to stay and work. It is helpful as we learn from each other. Meetings are the second Monday of each month from 6 to 7pm at the Neosho Library.
I was invited to set up my rug table at a special event Sat. Jan 22nd. It was at the Village of Stella. They used the FEMA building for a quilt show and a special display outside put on by the Mo. Dept. of Conservation and Mo. Master Naturalists to educate the eagle watches about the eagles. Many came to see the eagles and I was pleasantly surprised at the number who came in to see the beautiful quilts. I was happy to talk to many people about the weaving I do and was able to sell a few rugs.
I managed to finish this set of four books in one at last. It was hard to put it down once I started.
The Circle
Complete volumes of Black, Red, White, and Green
by Ted Dekker
I have enjoyed Dekker's books over the years and when I decided to read this set, I ordered this one book that contains all four books. It is about 2 inches thick and was difficult to hold but with the help of a lap desk I managed. It was great to just go right from one book into the next. This is Christian Fiction at its best; science fiction, fantasy, and suspense. This started out to be a trilogy but the fourth book came out to tie it all up nicely.
This first book sets you up for a wild ride. When we first meet Thomas Hunter, he is on the run from some hitmen. It seems that he borrowed some money from the mob and never gotaroundto pay them back. A bullet grazes Thomas' head and he is knocked unconscious.
When he "wakes up" he has no memory of who he is and he finds himself in the Black Forest being chased by huge black bats. When he passes out in this reality he wakes up back in the city and flees to his sisters home. Again when he goes to sleep there he awakes in the Black Forest. So Thomas is trapped between two realities. He finds he can't tell which one is real after a few trips. He is in grave danger in both. This is a story about the power of evil and the consequences of human choice. As in all Dekker books there is a theological plot beneath the story line, as bazar as it may seem.
In this sequel, Hunter finds himself again torn between two realities. In one he’s an ancient general leading a band of warriors against hopeless odds; in the other he’s battling a terrorist plot that has infected much of the modern world with a deadly virus. Hunter teams up with a scientist to seek a vaccine in time. The Christian symbolism woven into the story cannot be missed as good battles evel and the waiting for the Messiah to deliver them.
In this chapter of the saga we find the lead character still switching back and forth from two different worlds through the gateway in his dreams. On modern day earth a terrorist has unleashed a biological weapon that has infected most of the world's population, and has the anti-dote in exchange for the nuclear power of the world's nations. In the alternate world, Hunter, is still leading a small band of faithful from being slaughtered by the enemy. Without giving away too much, he finds himself with a most unusual and conflicting situation: he has fallen for the daughter of his enemy. The entire enemy is diseased, and has a very ugly skin condition, and this daughter is no different, so he must look past this and try and rescue her before they are wiped out. The faithful are washed in a holy lake to keep their skin and minds clear. They enemy refuse and worship their evil God. There are so many biblical tie ins with these books that make them so interesting.
Thomas Hunter has saved Earth from a deadly virus and fended off the Horde of the future. Thomas no longer dreams. Though unaware of the coming events on Earth, Thomas suspects there is a war fast approaching. His beloved son has turned against his teachings and causes an uprising. Thomas must find a way to bring his people together again and save not only his son but the future of the Forest. In this final chapter in the Circle series you will find yourself unable to put it down. Green is not only the sequel to the series but the prequel as well to the first book. Now figure that out.
From WeaverBirds Rugs, formerly Read Again Books