Garden of Evil (A Britt Montero Novel) book review

Garden of Evil (A Britt Montero Novel) book review

garden of evil book

Garden of Evil: A Britt Montero Novel,  by Edna Buchanan

I know this former Miami crime beat reporter,  now novelist, is very popular, but not with me. In this book, the protagonist writes in the first person, which I like, but I don’t like her character.

The first scene is a bloody gruesome traffic accident. I like bloody. I like gruesome. But not traffic accidents. I think she goes for a hamburger afterwards. Like that.

Also,Buchanan writes about being hot all the time, trying to set the scenes for Florida, I assume. But why would I want to think about hot, sticky,  and sweating? Gross.

Bout of Books

Along with my One Minute Book Review today, I’m sharing a rather fun event I found on Twitter: Bout of Books. I thought, oh fun, I get it. Then the more I read about it, I don’t get it at all. I think I make a list of books I want to try to read in a week, and then confess whether I got to them.

‘Almost all of my reading these days is only when I go outside with my canary. He’s very charming and sweet, but…I have a juicy book in my hands at all times for those moments when our conversation lags a little. I don’t know what seems stranger to the other apartment dwellers in my complex: the book, or my canary. There don’t seem to be others of either one. But I don’t really care.

Yesterday a neighbor who is in residency to be a family doctor said wistfully, “I wish I had more time to read.” I said, “So do I!”

So reading time is mostly canary time. But sometimes my book is so good I sneak in a few pages inside, and sometimes I just ignore work and go upstairs and sit in bed with half a dozen books beside me. Sure, I’ll do Bout of Books for a week.

Here is how they describe the challenge:

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 19th and runs through Sunday, August 25th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 8.0 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team


Bout of Books

I think I have to write about my goals in a separate post.

How to write a vampire book.

How to write a vampire book.


The Dracula Tape, by Fred Saberhagen

Not into vampires, and didn’t think I’d like this, so I put it aside for a few years. I’ve read the real Dracula,  Bram Stoker Dracula twice, starting in high school, and loved it, so not much compares to the original. But the other week, when I needed a paperback, I just grabbed it.

How to write a vampire book: copy Bram Stoker’s Dracula word for word!

I guess this author agrees with me about the value of the original Dracula, because at least half of the book is copying the original Dracula, in all major plot points, and sometimes word for word! (The original Dracula is now in the public domain, of course.) So that’s how to write a vampire book, or any Victorian gothic:: just find a book in the public domain — heck, Dracula is worth another shot, isn’t it? — and just add some scenes and updates!

Now, the book is not worthless, and I read the whole thing, except for the last 15 pages or so, which dragged. He has some new twists – did they know anything about blood transfusions back then, and is that why people died, from the incompetent doctors? — and I laughed a couple of times. I didn’t really like his interpretation of Dracula in the physical details, what he drank, etc – but examining death and life is always interesting, if you are a curious person.

I read the Amazon reviews just now, and am astounded at how much they like this book! They sound like vampire fanboys, if you know what I mean.


I’m one of only 3 people who reviewed this movie.

I’m one of only 3 people who reviewed this movie.

Did I forget to mention this? That I also write One Minute Movie Reviews?

And this one can’t wait, because it’s new on Hulu, and there are NO reviews there, and only one (fake?) one up on Amazon and only one on IMDB! And nothing on Rotten Tomatoes!

hunting buddies dvd

Hunting Buddies - Brandon Van Vliet, Pete Duffy,  by John Karsko

You think a cover doesn’t sell movies or books? You are a fool!!!! The only reason I picked this to watch on Hulu is because of the great red, black and white photo for the movie – and there were many other great shots and scenes in it, too.

Otherwise…I hate hunters. I despise them. I lose friends on Facebook when I say I hate states that allow hunting. I loathe the USDA and Fish & Game. I can give you dozens of essays and reasons why hunting is the work of the devil – and worse.

So the only reason I picked this movie to watch in Hulu was 1) the cover and 2) the hope that all the hunters would die at the hand of a serial killer or monster, and then I would feel very satisfied.

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How to add an Amazon Wishlist to Your Blog

How to add an Amazon Wishlist to Your Blog

Another in my series of Tech Tips for Artists.

It’s not that you’re materialistic, or G*d forbid, a selfish bugger, but everyone wants something. And what’s more fun than writing a Christmas list to Santa? Writing an ongoing, ever-updating list of things you really really need (or want)? on Amazon, so your kind and generous readers will know what to get you for all your hard work.

I tried to find how to add a Wishlist 3 years ago. I even called Amazon Associates, but they were dense. Finally, I found a link for the strange cousin of WordPress, WordPressMu:

Works with straight WordPress just fine. The trick was to find where it was hidden on Amazon’s site; as the author says there, it’s not easy to find! If you’re an Amazon Associate, it’s listed under Widgets>Other Widgets. If you’re not an Amazon Associate, lay down and die. JK.

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