Saturday, July 24, 2021

Pink Saturday Silk Ribbon Embroidery + 2 Out of 4 Isn't Bad!

I have always been fascinated by people who have the patience, skill and talent to create flowers and design embellishments with bits and pieces of silk ribbon. This example seemed too perfect for Beverly's Pink Saturday Blog Hop not to share. If you scroll to the bottom of the post, I'm going to share a couple other photos of other marvelous pieces!

But, first, this week's book round-up. Two terrific must-reads for mystery lovers - and two books that I'm so sorry to have picked up! LOL

First I have to address some of the reviews I've read on Goodreads and Amazon that contain complaints that this book has too much plot. Seriously?! With so many mystery/thrillers that have chase/romance/escape filler to disguise the fact that there is hardly any plot, I found the many complex and disparate threads that wove into one final tapestry exceptionally well written. I've decided Mr. O'Brien must have written this from the end backwards. There are so many plot lines that eventually feed into each other it was astonishing to me. And, though I hadn't figured out the denouement, I had to admit all the clues and arrows were pointing there and readily available to somebody more quick-witted than I!

Now, how disparate are those threads? The book is about a 30 year old Manson-like thrill killing spree and a contemporary copy cat killing. And there is a film being made of the original gruesome crime that has been plagued by disasters, including deaths, of the people involved in the making of it. So why disparate? Because the protagonist and main character in the book is young mother/widow of a war hero who works as a cook in a gourmet diner and is being stalked by her ex-lover. And she has absolutely nothing to do with the film, the original murders or the copy-cat murders. How is that for out of left field? LOL

I loved this book. I enjoyed every page. The characters are vivid and sharply drawn. The plot is complex and smart. The dialogue is believable and each character has a voice of their own. And I enjoyed that it was about Hollywood film and celebrities and nostalgia - but takes completely in Washington state. I found the whole thing refreshingly original. This is one of my rare 5 star reviews! I think it's about as close to perfect as a murder mystery gets! 

Very disappointing to me. I thought this was going to be a mystery thriller. And, it sort of is ... but it's supernatural and, basically, an excuse for chapter after chapter of soft porn. I've never been a fan of soft porn. I have always equated soft porn with real life sex: soft just doesn't get the job done. Okay - too much information, I know. But, it bored me silly.

One dead ex-lover's spirit inhabits the body of a new lover and makes the life of the main character a living hell. It's a living hell for a bazillion chapters while he has supposedly mind-blowing sex.

Just not my cup of tea. If you like this kind of thing, I suppose it was bizarre enough to keep one reading. I only kept reading because I thought it was going to turn out that somebody was trying to drive the main character crazy or something. Nope. It was what it was.

As much as I disliked the book, I really disliked the publisher's advertising and found it disingenuous and misleading. And that quote from Stephen King on the cover raving about it? - how much did they pay for that?!


Something about UK (and Scandinavian) serial killers is creepier than our American ones...or, at least the fictional ones. Perhaps I've just read too many American serial killer novels and watched too many of our films and television series. But, they do tend to be doggedly similar. These Brits are really wacky and loonier tunes than I would be able to come up with LOL.

This novel works on three levels: the serial killer (who 'steals' tattoos - especially full body ones - from his murder victims); the tattoo artist who is avoiding her exhusband, the serial killer, and might have a thing for the detective in charge of the case (even though she's a boho tattoo artist rebel and naturally anti-police); and the police detective who is a jaded, sour fellow who is still grieving his murdered wife and young daughter.

Now doesn't all that sound cheerful? This is one dark, edgy, twisty and twisted noir-ish tale.

It's terrific. I loved it. I read the whole thing in one night ... though it did take me the whole night. It's well written; tight and concise and Ms. Belsham has a knack for describing horrifying murder scenes without being graphic and downright disgusting.

And, if you're of a mind, there are some fab ideas for tattoos! 

The set up for this story was intriguing: Nazi-occupied Paris with an odd-couple of detective partners, one a French police detective and the other a Gestapo detective. Together they've been assigned to work as a team to solve murders during the occupation. And the set up for this mystery was intriguing, too. I think. I say "I think," because I'm not really sure what any of it was. This has to be the worst translation I've ever tried to wade through. Garbled sentences, incomplete thoughts, partial phrases rendered meaningless by the 'translation by Google translator." It took me over four hours just to read 100 pages. And I wasn't even sure what was going on. I know it involved antique coins, a possible maybe or maybe not murdered prostitute, a criminal murdered on a carousel (or maybe it was a Resistance fighter? I'm not sure) ... or maybe those were just sidelines in the story. I just knew I wasn't going to attempt another 300+ pages.

I have a feeling if you read French and got a copy of the book in the original language, it would be quite good. But, this is like trying to listen to music while you're underwater. 

And that's it for this week! Here are two more promised images of beautifully crafted silk ribbon embroidery samples. I wish I knew the artists who created them so I could find more of their work. I'm afraid I have to be satisfied with these!

Enjoy your weekend - be sure to check out the other offerings on Beverly's Pink Saturday Blog Hop!
And then - go make something beautiful!

¸.•´¸.•*´¨) ¸.•*´¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´) Tristan




Jeanie said...

Oh Tristan, that embroidery is beautiful. Love the ribbons. And the books, most, sound good -- though not all my cuppa!

Thanks for all the nice words on the painting, which made me feel very good indeed. Big smiles. I love doing the pets, though they can be a challenge because you aren't doing just A dog, you're doing THE dog and there can be a big difference. I sell original paintings as greeting cards (generally simpler ones); others I have might prints for notecards made (and also photo notes) and I also sell framed/matted originals of paintings. It's always a crap shoot. Cards still do pretty well but more people are doing e-correspondence. With originals, you just have to hope it connects to what a person wants. But with pet portraits and house portraits, that can be done custom.

Anyway, probably TMI but thanks for asking!

Buttercup said...

I'm adding The Tattoo Thief to the top of my list. Of course, I'm in the middle of the two other books, so the top of my list isn't the tip-top. Started a new mystery series in Maine -- will be posting about it later this week -- and really enjoying it.

Jeanie said...

Hi Tristan! I thought I had an email address for you so I could reply directly to your comments but th eone I had bounced back. Anyway -- I'm glad we are connected again and than you so much for all the wonderful comments you've shared on my blog. They all mean a lot (I'm especially glad you liked the paintings. And my Otsego Lake is in Michigan, not NY. A lot of upstate NY places show up in names around here -- the state must have been settled by New Yorkers -- Ithaca, Otsego, Rochester, Lansing, lots more!

Bohemian said...

That Silk Ribbon Embroidery is Sublime! Artisans spending so much time doing Labor intensive Art is a dying Art Form really, which is a shame. Just found your Blog via Jeanie's Blog... so now I shall be diving into your Blog Post Archives!