New Books

This guy knows his romance

Chris Harrison has been the host of ABC's hot series The Bachelor since 2002 and has spent his career helping men and women find their soul mate. Who better to write a romance novel? The Perfect Letter is Harrison's writing debut and, I have to say, this guy really knows his romance. Not bad for a first attempt. Light and easy, it is a must-read for Bachelor fans and hopeless romantics everywhere.

Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee

Go Set a Watchman, the novel that Harper Lee wrote before writing her beloved prize-winning To Kill a Mockingbird, was finally published July 14 with much interest and excitement. I just finished reading the book, and it was well worth it. I felt transported back in time to the South with its mindset, culture, and way of life. Go Set a Watchman is set in the 1950s when Jean Louise (Scout) returns to her hometown of Maycomb from New York.

A sweet little series set in Sweet, Texas

Are cowboys and sweet romance your thing? The Sweet, Texas series by Candis Terry is full of hot cowboys and good old fashioned romance guaranteed to satisfy. I just finished book number three, Something Sweeter, and highly recommend this author to those who enjoy authors Robyn Carr or Jill Shalvis. Once you meet the Wilder family from Sweet, Texas in book one, it won't take long until you feel like you are one of the family – and what a family they are!

Is Wisconsin a hotbed for crime?

Wisconsin is the setting for a number of crime novels lately. Here are 4 of them:

Mysteries of Soldiers Grove by Paul Zimmer

Deliciously bad writing by your favorite authors

Have you ever dreamed of becoming a famous author, or maybe even written a few things of your own that was not quite bestseller material? Don't be discouraged. Writing takes work and we all have to start somewhere. Journalist and Editor Julia Scott put together a book appropriately titled Drivel in which dozens of respected, professional writers share the worst thing they have ever written. If you think your favorite author simply woke up one day and wrote a bestseller, think again.

More homespun humor from Wisconsin author Michael Perry

After publishing nonfiction books (Population 485, Coop, Visiting Tom), Wisconsin author Michael Perry has published his first novel, Jesus Cow, which just may leave you laughing out loud. His new novel is much like his previous books—full of humor, quirky characters, and some food for thought. Main character Harley Jackson is just trying to hold on to the last few acres of farmland that belonged to his family.

Holy Cow by David Duchovny

Have you "herd" about the new book by actor David Duchovny? If you are in the mood for some silliness, Holy Cow, Duchovny's debut novel, approaches some serious real world issues in a highly humorous manner. There's nothing overly special about the book. It is a very whimsical story about farm animals that become friends and are looking to escape the inevitability of their lives. It is light, easy, entertaining, fast paced and, at times, just plain silly.

The Wright Brothers by David McCullough

Popular and award-winning historical writer David McCullough has done it again with his account of the Wright Brothers’ success in developing a flying machine. The new bestseller, The Wright Brothers, concentrates on the brothers’ lives leading up to their historic 1903 flight at Kitty Hawk and the decade after that event with an emphasis on the relationship of Wilbur, Orville and their sister Katharine.

Escape to Chesapeake Shores

For me, reading Dogwood Hill by Sherryl Woods was a great escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The twelfth in her Chesapeake Shores series, it is a continuation of the O'Brien family saga in a small town on the Chesapeake Bay. Those O'Brien's are a meddlesome and loveable family, full of matchmakers known for lots of well-intentioned hijinks. Dogwood Hill is a simple story that is just plain pleasant and enjoyable and filled with family love and subtle humor – a perfect reading getaway.

Romance and suspense set in southwestern Wisconsin

Two senior citizens find love and danger in the driftless area around Soldiers Grove and Viroqua in Paul Zimmer’s novel The Mysteries of Soldiers Grove. This is a quick read with some humor, some serious points about growing old, and a happy ending. Told in alternate chapters by Cyril and Louise who both live at the assisted living center in Soldiers Grove. Cyril is alone in the world. He had a hard childhood with drunken parents and sought comfort in reading biographies in the encyclopedia.

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