I have always liked Margaret Maron's novels, and Hard Row had one of the most eye-popping murders I've read about in a mystery in a long time. After the discovery of the two legs in the roadside ditch, things progressed to finding other body parts strewn around the county. The mystery got a little more complicated when the police found a third hand. I hate to say that murder is ever justified, but the killer in this story had a damned good motive. I just have to remember it is fiction, not real life. Hard Row makes you ask yourself, Just who is the bad guy here? I like and appreciate thought-provoking novels.
Sometime last year (2008, you know: my bad year for reading) I picked up Martha Grimes's Dust, one of her Richard Jury novels. I got to page 81 and just lost interest, so I put it back down. I thought at the time I was just tired of Martha Grimes, and maybe it was time to find a new author to add to my favorites. Since the book was still in my to-be-read pile, I decided to give it another try. I started over at page 1 and it held my interest until the very last word. I was glad for several reasons: I knew then I wasn't tired of Grimes, so I'm hoping she's not tired of writing about Richard Jury; I was able to get involved in the story; and I didn't just give up on the book completely. All in all it was a good reading experience. (If you want a maddening Martha Grimes novel, read The Old Wine Shades; the ending is logical but frustrating.)
How about some pretty pictures?
This is the stinky Dragon Arum surrounded by Amaryllis. The Dragon Arum is getting ready to bloom. Oh, joy.
Here's a close-up of one of the Amaryllis blooms (and my hand). It's such a pretty, cheerful, bright red.
South Georgia had tornadoes again yesterday. I was home sick and, thank God, nothing happened to our house, but some families in Ben Hill, Worth, and Irwin counties were not so fortunate. I don't think anyone was killed, which is a blessing. Quite a few of the staff and students of Small Public Institution live in those counties, so if you're the praying type, perhaps you could say a few words about them.