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6 Degrees of Separation Fiction

6 Degrees of Separation: Books I Didn’t Like But More That I Did

It’s time for another adventure in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. We are given a book to start with, and from there we free associate six books.

This month we begin with What I Loved by Siri Hustvedt, a novel I haven’t read.

1. The only book by Siri Hustvedt that I’ve read is The Enchantment of Lily Dahl, which my library book group read back in 1999. I remember nothing about this book except that I didn’t much like it, and nearly all the members of the group felt the same way. And that experience is why I’ve never read any more books by this author.

2. Ten years later (2009) another book, Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah, produced a similar result. At our meeting one member opened with, “With friends like this, who needs enemies?” Everyone agreed with her. I have never read another novel by Kristin Hannah, even though she has become a very popular author. In fact, I’ve seen several book bloggers and Instagram readers refer to her as one of their “auto-buy authors,” meaning that they automatically buy every book the author publishes.

3. One of my “auto-buy authors” is Michael Connelly. His latest novel, which I preordered, is Fair Warning, published at the end of May 2020. Connelly started out as a journalist before turning into a full-time novelist.

4. Another author who started out as a journalist before turning to crime fiction is Edna Buchanan. She won a Pulitzer Prize for her newspaper work in 1986, but I love her crime novels set in Miami and featuring journalist Britt Montero. The first book in the series in Contents Under Pressure (1992). Buchanan is now in her 80s.

5. Mary Higgins Clark also wrote well into her golden years before she died on January 31, 2020, at age 92. She became known as the queen of romantic suspense. Her first novel, Where Are the Children? (1975), which I recently reread, is still one of the most suspenseful—and chilling—stories I’ve ever read.

6. Before Mary Higgins Clark, another Mary wrote many compelling romantic suspense novels that helped create the genre: Mary Stewart, who died in 2014 at age 97. Her first romantic suspense novel, Madam, Will You Talk?, was published in 1955. Her singular talent was combining romance with compelling mysteries that feature strong, capable women who have no fear of fending for themselves. During my high school and college years I marched against the Vietnam war while also devouring all of Mary Stewart’s novels, which formed a great backdrop for my own coming of age. 

So there we have it, a 6 Degrees of Separation list that progresses nicely from books that I didn’t like to books that I liked at lot.

© 2020 by Mary Daniels Brown

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6 Degrees of Separation Awards & Prizes Fiction

6 Degrees of Separation on My TBR Shelves

It’s time for another adventure in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. We are given a book to start with, and from there we free associate six books.

This month we begin with Sally Rooney’s best seller (and now a TV series), Normal People. I’ve had this novel on my TBR shelf since it first came out, and I had every intention of reading it before working on this month’s challenge.

However, unlike the people in Rooney’s novel, these times (COVID-19 pandemic and, here in the U.S., racial injustice with associated protests) are not normal, and I didn’t get a lot of reading done over the past month. Since I therefore am not ready to deal with Normal People thematically, I’ve had to look for another approach to this month’s challenge. A check on Goodreads revealed that Normal People received a lot of accolades:

Further digging revealed that I also have on my TBR shelves several novels that in the past received these same awards. 

1. Normal People was on the long list for the Women’s Prize for Fiction (2019). The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller is a former winner of this annual prize.

2. Normal People was on the long list for the 2018 Booker Prize. The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes received this award in 2011.

3. Normal People received the Costa Book Award for Novel in 2018. Days Without End by Sebastian Barry won the same award, plus the Costa Book of the Year Award, in 2016.

4. The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton won the Booker Prize in 2013.

5. Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders also won the Booker Prize, in 2017.

6. A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson won the Whitbread Award, which later became the Costa Novel Award, in 2015.

It’s comforting to know that I have so many good books still on my TBR shelves.  And I also discovered that I’ve already read several past prize winners:

  • Booker Prize: Hotel du Lac by Anita Brookner (1984), Possession by A.S. Byatt (1990), and The Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood (2000)
  • Women’s Prize: We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver, Bel Canto by Ann Patchett, A Crime in the Neighborhood by Suzanne Berne
  • Costa Award (formerly Whitbread Award): The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by  Stuart Turton, Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman, Life After Life by Kate Atkinson

The moral of this story is that I should pay more attention to literary prizes in the future.

© 2020 by Mary Daniels Brown

Categories
6 Degrees of Separation

6 Degrees of Separation: All Roads Lead to . . .

It’s time for another adventure in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. We are given a book to start with, and from there we free associate six books

This month, in keeping with the theme of the current pandemic, the starting point is The Road by Cormac McCarthy. In this evocative novel, a man and his son follow a road south in a post-apocalyptic world covered with ash and devoid of hope.

1. November Road by Lou Berney takes place in late November 1963. Frank Guidry, a mid-level mobster from New Orleans, realizes that, by delivering a get-away car to Dallas, he has become a loose end in one of the biggest events in American history. Without even returning home, Guidry hits the road for California in an effort to outrun the hitman he knows will be coming after him. On the way he meets a housewife who, with her two young daughters, has finally gotten up the courage to leave her no-good drunken husband in search of a new life in Los Angeles.

2. The characters in Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates buy a house on Revolutionary Road in the suburbs hoping it will provide them the picture-perfect life of the American dream.

3. “Road dogs” are prisoners who watch out for each other while in the big house. In Elmore Leonard’s novel Road Dogs two former road dogs team up after their release to navigate their return to the world of hustles, cons, and scams.

4. In Ace Atkins’s debut novel Crossroad Blues, former NFL player turned music professor Nick Travers investigates the disappearance of an academic colleague who has disappeared while researching the mysterious death of Blues legend Robert Johnson. The novel’s title is also the title of a song written and recorded by Johnson about where he sold his soul to the devil in exchange for musical talent.

5. Donald E. Westlake’s comic caper novel The Road to Ruin features Westlake’s beloved hapless crook John Dortmunder and his band of misfits attempting to steal a corrupt corporate CEO’s collection of valuable classic cars. Since this is a Dortmunder novel, their elaborate plan does not go well. 

6. After Irish mob hitman Michael O’Sullivan’s son witnesses one of his father’s jobs, O’Sullivan’s boss orders the deaths of the entire O’Sullivan family in The Road to Perdition by Max Allan Collins. Michael and his adolescent son escape the attack that kills his wife and younger son. Father and son take to the road in search of safety for themselves and vengeance for the deaths.

All of these novels with the word road in their titles dramatize the metaphor of life as a journey. Whether the road functions as a means of escape or a path to salvation or paradise, it’s the journey rather than the destination that’s important.

© 2020 by Mary Daniels Brown

Categories
6 Degrees of Separation

6 Degrees of Separation: From “Wolfe Island” to “Me”

It’s time for another adventure in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. We are given a book to start with, and from there we free associate six books.

This month we begin with Lucy Treloar’s Wolfe Island. According to Amazon, this novel is not available in the U.S. (except in audio CD format for ~$50), although it was just published in summer 2019. Here’s the description of the book from Goodreads:

For years Kitty Hawke has lived alone on Wolfe Island, witness to the island’s erosion and clinging to the ghosts of her past. Her work as a sculptor and her wolfdog Girl are enough. News of mainland turmoil is as distant as myth until refugees from that world arrive: her granddaughter Cat, and Luis and Alejandra, a brother and sister escaping persecution. When threats from the mainland draw closer, they are forced to flee for their lives. They travel north through winter, a journey during which Kitty must decide what she will do to protect the people she loves.

Part western, part lament for a disappearing world, Wolfe Island (set off the northeast coast of the US) is a transporting novel that explores connection and isolation and the ways lives and families shatter and are remade.

From the comments on Goodreads, I see that the novel is about climate change, as Wolfe Island, along with many other coastal islands, has now become nearly uninhabitable, with millions of people worldwide losing their homes. The novel further addresses the issues of family, love, and treatment of refugees. 

1. Whenever I have to discuss climate fiction, my go-to illustration is the seminal ecofiction classic Dune by Frank Herbert. Herbert grew up in Tacoma, WA, USA, my recently adopted home town.

2. Most of Arrakis, the planet on which Dune is set, is covered with sand. Jane Harper’s novel The Lost Man also features a sandy desert landscape, the Australian outback. Nathan Bright returns to his family’s cattle station for the burial of his younger brother. 

3. While Harper’s novel features a man standing over his brother’s grave, My Sister’s Grave by Robert Dugoni shows us a woman, Tracy Crosswhite, at her sister’s grave. The murder of her sister, Sarah, is what caused Tracy to become a homicide detective with the Seattle PD.

4. The novel Long Bright River by Liz Moore, which is in the next-up position on my TBR shelf, also features sisters. One is a police officer, while the other is buried deep in the opiod-addiction crisis.

5. In Two Kinds of Truth Michael Connelly’s fictional detective Harry Bosch goes undercover to investigate an operation using homeless people to obtain and fill prescriptions for opiods that are then sold illegally. Bosch befriends a woman who turned to drugs after the death of her teenage daughter many years earlier. He even helps her through rehab, but, eventually, unable to overcome her grief, she relapses and dies of an overdose.

6. So as not to end on a low note, I turn finally to another book waiting patiently on my TBR shelf, Elton John’s autobiography Me. After many years of abusing alcohol and drugs, he has now been clean and sober for nearly 30 years.

I always enjoy seeing where these free-association book chains end up. I hope you’ll consider participating in this monthly exercise.

© 2020 by Mary Daniels Brown

Categories
6 Degrees of Separation

6 Degrees of Separation: What Goes Around Comes Around

It’s time for another adventure in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. We are given a book to start with, and from there we free associate six books.

This month we begin with a book that topped the critics ‘best of 2019’ lists, Fleishman Is in Trouble by Taffy Brodesser-Akner. I found a copy of Fleishman on the Lucky Day shelf at my local public library. The Lucky Day shelf houses a few copies of current, popular books—the kind of books that probably already have 100 or more pending requests. I had wanted to read this novel and felt lucky indeed to find it waiting for me.

1. The same day I found Fleishman Is in Trouble on the Lucky Day shelf I also found Searching for Sylvie Lee by Jean Kwok, another book I wanted to read. Sylvie Lee, a woman in her 30s, travels from the U.S. back to Sweden, where she spent her first nine years, to visit her dying grandmother and pick up her inheritance of the family’s jewelry. Before her grandmother dies, she reveals a secret to Sylvie.

2. In Sisters One, Two, Three by Nancy Star, the death of a grandmother triggers questions that finally lead to the revelation of family secrets.

3. The protagonist of The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware finds out about a grandmother she never knew she had when she receives legal notification that she has inherited her grandmother’s family house. On her trip to the house she meets more family members and finally learns about a whole bunch of secrets that her mother had never told her.

4. In The Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewell, Libby Jones has known for most of her life that she’d find out about her birth parents on her 25th birthday. But she’s surprised to learn at the same time that she has also inherited from her grandparents an abandoned mansion on the banks of the Thames that is now worth millions. And of course she has also inherited a whole truckload of dark family secrets.

5. From The Family Upstairs we move easily to The Woman Upstairs by Claire Messud, set in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Nora Eldridge, a 37-year-old elementary school teacher who gave up her youthful ambitions of becoming an artist, finds the Shahid family, who move in downstairs, mesmerizingly fascinating. The husband, Skandar, is a Lebanese scholar here to take up a fellowship at Harvard. The wife, Sirena, is a glamorous and self-confident Italian artist. Their son, Reza, attends the school where Nora teaches, and through this connection Nora quickly insinuates herself into the Shahid family. Nora assumes that the Shahids feel the same way about her that she feels about them. When a casual occurrence reveals that Sirena doesn’t think of Nora as her bosom friend and confidant, Nora unleashes a torrent of rage and pent-up loneliness and frustration.

6. Nora’s rage leads us back around to Fleishman Is in Trouble, a novel that begins as the narrative of a failing marriage but ends as a statement of feminist anger about what happens to ambitious, intelligent women who overachieve.

What goes around comes around: a chain of six books that ends right back where it began.

© 2020 by Mary Daniels Brown

Categories
6 Degrees of Separation

6 Degrees of Separation

It’s time for another adventure in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. We are given a book to start with, and from there we free associate six books.

This month we begin with the 2019 best-seller Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid, the story of the rise and fall of a fictional rock band in the 1970s.

1. Another novel that features characters from the music industry is A Visit from the Goon Squad (2010) by Jennifer Egan. This novel received both the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the 2011 National Book Critics Circle Award.

2. Richard Russo’s Empire Falls (2001) also won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, in 2002. The novel is set in a now nearly dead former mill town in upstate New York. Although the population of the town has dwindled because of the lack of job opportunities, what remains of the town is still run by the aging daughter of the man who amassed a fortune from the operation of the mill.

3. The Blind Assassin (2000) by Margaret Atwood is another prize-winning novel, having received the Booker Prize in 2000. Like Empire Falls, The Blind Assassin  takes place in a now much diminished former mill town in upstate New York still run by the aging daughter of the man who amassed a fortune from the operation of the mill. The main character of this novel is haunted by the accomplishment of her sister, Laura Chase, who wrote a popular science fiction/fantasy novel before dying at an early age.

4. Colleen Hoover’s 2018 novel Verity also features an author named Laura Chase, though the author’s real name is Lowen Ashleigh. When popular author Verity Crawford has a car accident and is unable to complete the final three books of her wildly popular fictional series, Verity’s husband and her publisher hire Lowen to complete the series. Verity’s husband insists that Lowen write the books under a pseudonym, and together they come up with the name Laura Chase. When Lowen arrives at the Crawford house to work in Verity’s study, Mr. Crawford introduces Lowen to the household staff as Laura Chase.

5. One Verity naturally leads to another: Code Name Verity (2012) by Elizabeth E. Wein. Another prize winner (the Edgar Award for Best Young Adult in 2013), this novel tells the story of young women working as spies in World War II.

6. Kate Atkinson’s 2018 novel Transcription tells the story of Juliet Armstrong, who, in 1940 at age 18, was hired by British intelligence to transcribe notes from conversations with informants. Soon Juliet is pulled more deeply into the spy business.

Having skipped last month because the prompt brought to mind absolutely nothing, I was delighted that this month’s chain fell into place almost effortlessly. From musicians through writers to spies, with a few literary awards thrown in, this has been the story of 6 Degrees of Separation.

© 2020 by Mary Daniels Brown

Categories
6 Degrees of Separation Fiction

6 Degrees of Separation: 1 Woman and 6 Others

It’s time for another adventure in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. We are given a book to start with, and from there we free associate six books.

This month we begin with a classic, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

1. Another book with the name Alice in the title is Lisa Genova’s first novel, Still Alice. Previous fiction about Alzheimer’s disease had explored the condition from the perspective of relatives and/or caregivers, but in this 2007 novel Genova portrays the condition from the point of view of the patient.

2. A woman’s name also appears in the title of Margaret Atwood’s novel Alias Grace. This novel is based on an 1843 case in which Grace Marks was convicted of murdering her employer and his housekeeper/mistress but had no memory of the event. The novel explores the experience of Doctor Simon Jordan, an emerging specialist in the growing field of mental illness, who tries to help Grace remember what happened.

3. Elizabeth Strout chose a woman’s name as the title of her novel Olive Kitteridge, which won the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Through a collection of several vignettes the novel portrays Olive, a retired school teacher, as others in her small town in Maine see her. Strout returns to her titular character in Olive, Again, published on October 15, 2019.

4. Elizabeth Is Missing by Emma Healey sports a woman’s name in the title. Like Still Alice, this novel, winner of the 2014 Costa Book Award for First Novel, portrays a character suffering from dementia. That character, Maud, may forget why she came into the room, but she’s certain that her friend Elizabeth is missing. Could her scattered memories hold the answer to a 70-year-old unsolved mystery?

5. Elizabeth Is Missing is from my shelf of books to-be-read that present fictional portrayals of older women. Another book on that shelf, and one that also contains a woman’s name in the title, is Three Things About Elsie by Joanna Cannon. As 84-year-old Florence lies on the floor waiting to be rescued after a fall, she thinks about her past life with her long-time friend Elsie. The dust jacket copy promises a tale of love and friendship couched within a mystery.

6. This chain ends with another novel from that same TBR shelf, What Rose Forgot by Nevada Barr. This novel apparently is an edgier thriller than the previous two. When Rose finds herself in an Alzheimer’s unit in a nursing home with no memory of how she got there, she executes a plan to find out who wants to put her away and why.

From a couple of Alices through Grace, Olive, Elizabeth, Elsie, and Rose, we’ve gone through a sequence of novels that all feature a woman’s name in the title. This was so much fun I hope I get to do it again some time.

© 2019 by Mary Daniels Brown

Categories
6 Degrees of Separation

6 Degrees of Separation: From Three to Eight

It’s time for another adventure in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. We are given a book to start with, and from there we free associate six books.

This month we begin with a book that everyone’s talking about – Three Women by Lisa Taddeo, which Goodreads describes as “the deepest nonfiction portrait of desire ever written.”

Since I’m not interested in the subject matter, I’m going to approach this month’s list by the numbers.

1. Another book with three in the title is The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu. In this science fiction book the author uses a well-known problem in physics and mathematics as the basis for an explication of China’s Cultural Revolution.

2. Next comes The Fourth Steven by Margaret Moseley, a humorous though dark mystery. Book rep Honey Huckleberry has three friends named Steven, but when someone named Steven calls her and confesses to murder, she’s pretty sure the caller isn’t one of them. Then, when her three Stevens start dying, the fourth Steven becomes the prime suspect. Yes, like so much in life, it’s complicated.

3. The anti-war novel Slaughterhouse-Five is Kurt Vonnegut’s best known work.

4. In Six Years by Harlan Coben, college professor Jake Fisher attends the funeral of Todd, the man he watched marry Natalie, the love of Jake’s life, six years earlier. But the grieving widow Jake glimpses at the funeral is not Natalie. Jake’s world begins to unravel as he searches for the truth about his past and about the woman he loved.

5. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid tells the life story of an aging movie star who has a secret to reveal to the young writer she has chosen to do the work.

6. Robert Dugoni combines a thrilling spy story with a cerebral courtroom procedural in The Eighth Sister.

And just like that, we’ve gone from three women to eight.

© 2019 by Mary Daniels Brown

Categories
6 Degrees of Separation

6 Degrees of Separation: From “A Gentleman in Moscow” to “The Chatham School Affair”

Here’s my entry in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. Here’s how it works:

Books can be linked in obvious ways – for example, books by the same authors, from the same era or genre, or books with similar themes or settings. Or, you may choose to link them in more personal or esoteric ways: books you read on the same holiday, books given to you by a particular friend, books that remind you of a particular time in your life, or books you read for an online challenge.

The great thing about this meme is that each participant can make their own rules. A book doesn’t need to be connected to all the other books on the list, only to the ones next to them in the chain. . .

This month we begin with A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles, a book that I have not yet read (although it’s on my TBR list). Here’s the description from Goodreads:

He can’t leave his hotel. You won’t want to.

From the New York Times bestselling author of Rules of Civility–a transporting novel about a man who is ordered to spend the rest of his life inside a luxury hotel.

In 1922, Count Alexander Rostov is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, and is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel’s doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him entry into a much larger world of emotional discovery.

Brimming with humor, a glittering cast of characters, and one beautifully rendered scene after another, this singular novel casts a spell as it relates the count’s endeavor to gain a deeper understanding of what it means to be a man of purpose.

1. Madeline “Maddie” Schwartz, the main character in Lady in the Lake by former journalist Laura Lippman, is also searching for a purpose in life. It’s 1966 in Baltimore, and after an 18-year marriage, Maddie has decided she wants something else from life rather than being just the wife of Milton Schwartz and the mother of Seth. She leaves her husband and son behind, gets her own apartment, and sets out to become a newspaper reporter.

2. Like Maddie in Lady in the Lake, Ingrid Coleman in Swimming Lessons by Claire Fuller comes to realize in middle age that she lost her sense of individual purpose when, as a pregnant student, she chose to give up her education and writing ambitions to marry the professor with whom she was in love. One day she goes for a swim in the ocean and never returns.

3. Architect Bernadette Fox also feels she has to run away from her family to rediscover herself in Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple. Fortunately, her teenage daughter is clever enough to figure out where Bernadette is and to go after her.

4. The Whisper Man by Alex North also tells the story of a parent and child searching for a way to reconnect with each other. After the sudden death of his wife, Rebecca, Tom Kennedy moves into a house in a different town with his seven-year-old son, Jake. Tension mounts when a young boy is killed and Tom realizes he must establish an emotional bond with Jake in order to protect him.

5. & Sons by David Gilbert tells the tale of A.N. Dyer, an old man trying to connect with his sons. Like Tom Kennedy in The Whisper Man, Dyer is a writer, but unlike Kennedy he has never before cared about having a meaningful relationship with his sons.

6. In The Chatham School Affair by Thomas H. Cook, Henry Griswald, now an elderly man, seeks to understand his long-dead father by discovering the truth about a long-ago event from his own childhood. 

And there we have it, a journey of emotional discovery through six degrees of separation.

© 2019 by Mary Daniels Brown

Categories
6 Degrees of Separation

6 Degrees of Separation

Here’s my entry in Kate’s 6 Degrees of Separation Meme from her blog, Books Are My Favourite and Best. Here’s how it works:

Books can be linked in obvious ways – for example, books by the same authors, from the same era or genre, or books with similar themes or settings. Or, you may choose to link them in more personal or esoteric ways: books you read on the same holiday, books given to you by a particular friend, books that remind you of a particular time in your life, or books you read for an online challenge.


The great thing about this meme is that each participant can make their own rules. A book doesn’t need to be connected to all the other books on the list, only to the ones next to them in the chain. . .

Cover: Under the Lake

This month we begin with the book we ended last month’s chain with. For me, that was Under the Lake (1987) by Stuart Woods. I remember it as the spookiest book I’d ever read when I discovered it back in 1996.

1. Another book by Stuart Woods that I enjoyed is his first novel, Chiefs (1981), based on a family story. This novel became the first in the Will Lee series.

2. I next started reading Stuart Woods’s series featuring former NYPD detective now turned lawyer Stone Barrington. I began with the first novel in this series, New York Dead (1991). I read several more of the books in the series but eventually stopped because the stories became progressively more and more outlandish and just plain silly. 

3. Another series I gave up on is Patricia Cornwell’s books featuring medical examiner Kay Scarpetta. I quit that series after book #9, 1998’s Point of Origin. I don’t have to like fictional characters, but as Kay Scarpetta became more shrill and self-centered, the story lines also became more improbable. 

4. One fictional series that I enjoyed is Stephen White’s novels featuring clinical psychologist Alan Gregory. I discovered that series back in the early days of audiobooks, called books on tape back then because they came by mail in a boxed set of several cassettes. I listened to the first eight books but then lost touch with the series as technology changed and books on cassettes transitioned to audiobooks for download. But finding book #9, The Program (2008), recently on sale as an ebook reminded me of this excellent series. Now I have books 10-16 to look forward to.

5. I had a similar experience with Jonathan Kellerman’s Alex Delaware series. Like Alan Gregory, Alex Delaware is a clinical psychologist. And as with the Alan Gregory series, I discovered the Alex Delaware series back in those heady days of books on cassette. I’ve read about nine of these books, but, as the series is now up to book #35, I have a lot more to look forward to. I have #10, The Web, on my Kindle now.

6. Yet another mystery series I need to catch up on is Kate Atkinson’s Jackson Brodie books. My book group back in St. Louis read the first book in this series, Case Histories (2004), back in the day and loved it. The recent publication of the fifth Brodie book, Big Sky, reminded me that I need to read the other three before tackling this latest installment.

So there we have it, a series of series for 6 Degrees of Separation. So many books, so little time . . .

© 2019 by Mary Daniels Brown