HAIKU FOR HELEN
HOUSTON OPENS ITS ARMS WIDE
EATS MY DESERT COOL
Another C.J. Box book to recommend – PARADISE VALLEY, 2017, MINOTAUR BOOKS
Another terrific C.J. Box adventure. I could hardly wait to dive in, knowing it would be filled with people I’ve come to know, stories that have become part of my psyche. And, as always, as the tension built, the outcome working its way to its peak, I wanted to slow down, savor each word, turn each page slowly, so it would not end.
The Lizard King is a twisted bastard. Cassie Dewell knows him like no one else. Kyle Westergaard, a sharp, tough North Dakota Norwegian kid whose nightmares have nightmares, just wants to float the Mississippi like Tom Sawyer. As always, when the Lizard King comes to town, people die, reputations founder, idiot politicians rise and fall, but Cassie pushes forward, with Kyle as her reason, and, in the end, her accomplice. Great story…it flows logically to its conclusion, except for the unforeseen, and unnecessary cruelty and destruction of an evil man…but then, what else to expect from a sicko. There seems to be a straight line from North Dakota to that cabin in Montana, but there are gas stations, and break downs, and grouchy grandmas, and egos along the way that make you question the likelihood of success. And damned, if on occasion, you don’t almost feel sorry for the bastard they’re tracking.
READ THIS… you will hate the bad guy, you will applaud the good guys, you will grieve for the innocent, and you’ll wish to hell you had the chance to sit around a campfire with Bull Mitchell listening to his stories with a bottle of bourbon saucing them up.
p.s. if you have yet to read the other C.J. Box books, you will find yourself WANTING to read to read them… great stories to take you out of any humdrum day… he was here at our library last week… neat to hear him talk with all of us who love his characters…
so, I ventured to the Paris Street Market yesterday, just to see what I could see. One booth had beautiful, hand made quilts…old, with soft fabrics and neat stitches…at incredibly reasonable prices. Sometimes you find old quilts priced as though the vendor hand stitched them herself, paying herself by the number of stitches. Ugh. But, these were lovely, and nicely priced. I could not resist a wedding ring with a neat, blue star in the center of each ring – perfect stitches making the white muslin backing beautiful, too. We talked a bit, Judy, the vendor, and her husband, and I. I’ll check in again next month to see if the perfect Dresden plate is still available.
Then, hugging my new quilt, I passed a few booths of neat stuff, until I came upon a small collection of odd bits laid out on a neat old wood ironing board, and a couple small tables – no flags, no flash, no fancy. The vendor, Paulette, was sleeping under her umbrella. I wanted her four foot, wooden, long handled tool box, $35. I had to wake her. We chatted about the day, and her tool box; how we remembered way back when everyone wanted a wooden trunk to line with pretty wall paper to use as our coffee tables. You cannot give them away, now, says Paulette. I can see that. No, she didn’t take credit cards, so I walked to the theatre ATM, and returned for the box. She sold it to me for less – I knew she would…we’d chatted, y’know. And she ALMOST talked me into an Indian brass, cylinder, portable coffee grinder…why I could grind my own coffee on the train and make that incredibly strong coffee they make in India while on my way to work. I resisted. My way to work is but down the hall…but it was cool, and might make a good Christmas gift.
Feels good to get out amongst people; chat a bit, chuckle and laugh a bit… not too much, mind you…I don’t care all that much, nor do they… for a while, earlier this year, after B died, I guess I was hit with one of those Peggy Lee “is that all there is” moments… and I know such moments will hit again, now and then…but I tire of grief, don’t you? tire of staring at the wall, only partly listening to others? Yeah…at some point, you just gotta get up again… hit a flea market…for no good reason…