Monthly Archives: June 2012

I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella – Book

It’s the weekend which is standing in for the Fourth of July this year since the actual fourth is on a Wednesday. If you need something light-hearted and fun to read over this weekend I recommend I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella. This is a nice little tidbit of Chick Lit which sort of melts in your mouth like a buttermint.

Poppy Wyatt loses her antique emerald engagement ring at an event at a hotel and the book begins with the anxious hunt for the ring. Poppy has talked to the staff of the hotel and has given her cell phone number to everyone. She is beside herself about what her fiancé, Magnus will say, but she also has to meet his family the next evening, without the “family” ring. Believe it or not, someone runs by Poppy and steals her cell phone at exactly this crucial moment. Poppy is now afraid to leave the hotel because the hotel manager no longer has a way to reach her. As she paces and panics and tries to think what to do she glances down and sees a cell phone discarded in a bin. She adopts the phone right then and there and her adventures begin, because this phone is attached to a new person who is in the middle of a corporate drama. Poppy channels a little Poirot here to solve the mystery of her missing ring and to help sort Sam’s dilemma.
Actually, it would be more fun if you listened to this book on CD because Sophie Kinsella is a British author and the book is read with a British accent. Of course, you could engage your internal Brit and made up you own accent as you read. A pool and a book might form one perfect little oasis in your busy holiday weekend. Hint: don’t get in the pool with the CD player, just lose the earphones; play it out loud.

Four Fathers

Here they are. Meet our new Forefathers, Thomas Cantor, James Ryan, Ben Boehner, and George McConnell. I do think these guys believe they are channeling our Forefathers. They are so unyielding and so sure they are right. Any one of us could have predicted how they would react to yesterday’s Supreme Court Decision. Of course the election is adding drama to their extreme reactions, but that does not explain everything. The Affordable Care Act is not that different as health plans go. It does not get rid of the private sector. Everything stays essentially the same except more people are served.  So why so much vituperation. It all has to do, I believe, with the way Obama got the law passed. Seeing the opposition he faced he made a sort of end run around Congress and got his bill. Republicans were so angry they wanted to spit and they have not been able to put their anger aside. They have been “poor sports”. They have been worse than that; they have been vengeful. They just found Eric Holder, Obama’s Attorney General in Contempt of Congress, a thing which has never happened before. They are out of control. They are so angry they can’t think straight. They need to go sit on the bench for a while until they get a civil bone in their bodies. What Congress needs is a really good Coach.

The GOP symbol is the elephant. Elephants are wonderful critters, but are probably on the edge of extinction in the wild because they need so much human-free territory. The Democratic symbol on the other hand is the donkey, a wily little creature that can survive in the Grand  Canyon, can climb mountains, can carry burdens, can be tough and adapt to our crowded future. Which one promises to be around in the long run and which will be visiting in a wildlife preserve?

Becoming Our Own Charity

When our elected Congress people first started talking about things like “small government” and getting rid of “entitlements” because they are not part of the business of the federal government I was aghast, as I believe many of us were. I still resent that the opponents of the safety net played the “destroys initiative card” and the “creates lazy citizens card” and the “actually a form of oppression card”. If you want small government at least be honest about your motives; no need to insult the “have not’s”.
I do believe, in these times of big population, that a small government movement is inappropriate. I do not believe this is any moment, after the shenanigans of the big banks and Wall Street and the mortgage market to argue for total “laissez-faire” capitalism. This is not at all logical. “We messed up when we were regulated so you should take away all regulation.” Did you think the American people weren’t paying attention? This message that American regulations and tax codes are strangling business would make some sense if we could shrink the American economy enough to compete with China and India, et al. But why would we want to do that in the first place and could we even if we really wanted to? We are used to our creature comforts and we are accustomed to our standard of living. We cannot become a China or an India. We cannot shrink our economy enough to tempt back the manufacturers who have left us. And we cannot pretend that when they left us they did not hurt our economy, but they did not hurt it enough to make us competitive. It is not regulation that is driving business away; it is not tax codes; and it is not labor unions. It is the bottom line, it is the profit factor and it will take time for the advantage to swing back in our direction.
It is, however, quite possible that regulation and tax codes are hurting small businesses. It is possible and probable that in these straitened times, benefits like health care and pensions are hurting the willingness or ability of entrepreneurs to begin small businesses. I believe that we could work to take some risks out of business start-ups and we could do better with encouragements to venture capitalism. But, just because benefits are serving as obstacles to doing business does not mean our society can afford to do without them. Perhaps we do need to separate health care from employers. If health care is to be available to all, why should employers have any part in it? It challenges a workers right to privacy when an employer sponsors health care. Although the employer should not have any access to an employee’s health information it sometimes must be revealed so leave arrangements or similar issues can be addressed.
What seems to be true, and what I am hearing more often these day, is not that “entitlements” turn us all into deadbeats (since this is, surprise, surprise, an unpopular argument); it is that “entitlements” or our safety net is untenable. We will not be able to afford to keep it. These benefits we all rely on are unsustainable and they will bankrupt our government. I’m not sure it this is fact or hyperbole, but almost everyone from the most strident extremists to perfectly reasonable sounding moderates seems to agree that Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security certainly need some tweaking.
I keep thinking that we could set up some kind of citizen’s agency to collect and hold donations by people who wish to save these programs and to keep them open and operational for generations to come. It could be a sort of Red Cross program to rescue our safety net whenever it fell on difficult times, A Citizen’s Safety Net Emergency Fund run by financial people, economists, or CEO’s in the private sector who were directly elected by citizens in an internet voting procedure. Of course one problem with this would be to be sure our government wouldn’t “borrow” from the safety net because they knew the funds would be replaced. I’m sure that we human beings could come up with some very creative ways to abuse such an agency. Our clever brains are not always backed up by scruples. Anyway, that’s my basic idea for what it’s worth. I would leave it for great legal minds to write the necessary safe guards into the plan. We could become our own charity.

The Left Wing has Richer Backers

The Republican in my backyard (TRIMBY) sent me the transcript of an interview that Glenn Beck conducted on his radio show with an ex-liberal, now conservative writer, David Horowitz. Mr. Horowitz has a new book out called The New Leviathan: How the Left Wing Money Machine Shapes American Politics and Threatens America’s Future. (That’s a mouthful.) TRIMBY loves to zing me with anti-liberal propaganda and he loves Glenn Beck, who gives me a stomach ache.
Mr. Horowitz sees conservatives awakening. I certainly agree with that. He says conservatives don’t like politics. I say they’re learning fast.
Glenn says the number of groups and how much money they have on the left is “breathtaking.
14 liberal groups have more than a billion dollars in assets says Horowitz. “The conservatives have zero. There’s nobody on the side of the conservatives that have the juice and power of those foundations.”
On the conservative side the Koch brothers have $239 million.
On the liberal side the Ford Foundation has $10 billion (35x greater), the Gates Foundation is 3 times the size of the Ford. Total left-wing assets are $104 billion. There are 75 conservative foundations whose assets total $10 billion.
Glenn argues that the left made farmers stop using DDT which he does not consider dangerous (smack the palm of your hand against the side of your head and say “duh”). Because of that “horrible” Rachel Carson and her book The Silent Spring and the Environmental Resources Defense Council (funded by the Ford Foundation) (those awful lefties) we have to worry about malaria again which had almost disappeared. (Why do you think Ms. Carson named her book The Silent Spring?  Mosquitoes were not the only things dying.)
Glenn, really? DDT? That’s where you choose to make your stand?
Horowitz says Rockefeller is now left-wing, also Carnegie, Hewlett, Packard, Kellogg, Casey, and Joyce. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are funding the left and these are government backed institutions. And Soros.
Fact checkers please!
The leftwing 501(c)(3) ‑‑ by the way, this book is really about the Shadow Party on steroids. George Soros is an important player here but when you see how many of them there are, you’ll appreciate what we’re up against. The environmental leftists, we divided environmental groups into pro free market and antifree market. The antifree market wants huge government controls. They think that corporations are the cause of everything from the mythic global warming to every other environmental problem we have. So they have built into them this anticapitalist, antifreedom agenda. The progressive environmental organizations have $9 1/2 billion in assets. That’s bigger than the EPA budget which is 8.7 billion. And also dwarves the pro ‑‑ there are pro free market environmental organizations like the Competitive Enterprise Institute. There are 32 of those and they have $38 million. So that’s the left ‑‑
HOROWITZ: But that’s ‑‑ that’s not the end of it because the left through the Democratic Party and through brainless Republicans gets itself funded by the government. What’s the disparity there? They get annually $570 million to fund these anticapitalist, anticorporation environmental organizations, and the pro free market environmental organizations get 728,000. 570 million versus 728,000. You can do the math on that.
GLENN: We’re bringing a ‑‑ we’re not bringing a knife to a gunfight. We’re bringing a toothpick.
HOROWITZ: A toothpick, exactly right.
Yet in a blog yesterday morning
Obama says,
“I will be the first president in modern history to be outspent in his reelection campaign, if things continue as they have so far.”
(Questions: Can Foundations also be PACs? Do they qualify as corporations? Is the environmental movement by definition anti-capitalist and anti-freedom?)

Obama goes on to say: “I’m not just talking about the super PACs and anonymous outside groups – I’m talking about the Romney campaign itself. Those outside groups just add even more to the underlying problem.”

“The Romney campaign raises more than we do, and the math isn’t hard to understand. Through the primaries, we raised three-quarters of our money from donors giving less than $1,000, while Mill Romney’s campaign raised more than three-quarters of its money from individuals giving $1000 or more.”

“And, again, that’s not including the massive outside spending by super PACs and front groups funneling up to an additional billion dollars into ads trashing me, you , and everything we believe in.”

“We can be outspent and still win – but we can’t be outspent 10 to 1 and still win.”

Rio+20-Quelle Disappointment

We have the reports from the Rio+20 “sustainability” conference last week. The conference in Rio in 1992 was extremely productive and resulted in a detailed, organized report called, as we have learned, Agenda 21. Agenda 21 consists of 40 chapters and runs to 325 pages.
It seems as if the economic setbacks of the past 4 years have not created an economy of “happiness” in most of our world, but rather a fearful economy that feels it has to put aside environmental concerns until our economies perk up. So this year’s conference produced a document that ran to only 56 pages and mostly referred back to the 1992 document and said “ditto”.
Madame Secretary, Hillary Clinton, spoke on the final day of the conference and said, “In the 21st century, the only viable development is sustainable development. The only way to deliver lasting progress for everyone is by preserving our resources and protecting our common environment.”
Those who think Agenda 21 is already being implemented at the grassroots level like some pre-armed time bomb, and that this is some kind of grand global plot, are unlikely to change their view in spite of the meager outcomes of the Rio+20 Conference. They probably will just say that the grand plan is already in motion and cannot be stopped without vigilant opposition.
Meanwhile our overtaxed environments are not just at the mercy of the 7 billion humans on the planet, but also at the mercy of an economic crisis and a perceived “take-over” that will slowly push earth’s populations into configurations not of their own choosing, but which conform to someone’s design for what will produce sustainable development on the earth. We don’t really like to be pushed around but our tendency to push back may place additional strains on the earth’s resources. It would be great if we could all pursue a sustainability agenda together, but highly unlikely.

Waiting With Obama

It’s not like The Affordable Care Act was my ideal plan for health care. I wanted health care to be separated from employment. I wanted National Health Care (Medicare for everyone). I realized that in a national system we might have to wait longer for elective care and we might lose some access to services. Yet we seem to be losing access to some services anyway. There is a campaign to convince us that too many tests can have negative outcomes in the form of unnecessary biopsies or procedures, besides being expensive and sometimes exposing us to harmful rays or chemicals. We are told we should have fewer mammograms, fewer colonoscopies, fewer ultrasounds, fewer pap smears, fewer CT scans, fewer PSA’s. C’est la vie. We can’t have less expensive health insurance without losing a few services (although someone recently pointed out that even with fewer services costs are still rising). However, private insurers have no motivation without government regulation to insure people with pre-existing conditions or to insure people who can’t afford health insurance.
Anyway, National insurance was not what we got, except, in a way we did get most of what I wanted. We didn’t get to separate health insurance from employment but we did get insurance for those with pre-existing conditions and for the uninsured and young people got to stay on their parent’s insurance until the age of 26. Obama also found a way to leave plenty of room for private insurers which I felt was a real mistake, but which one would think would be seen as a plus by private insurers.
So now Obama and I are waiting with butterflies in our stomachs to see what the Supreme Court will say about The Affordable Care Act. Of course, Obama doesn’t know me and my butterflies can’t comfort him, but maybe it will help him to know there are some of us out here in America who are with him on this.
I would guess there is no such thing as a perfect health care plan for America (or any large nation), still, we will both survive, Obama and I, regardless of what the court has to say, but the repercussions will probably be much greater for Obama in the short run, and much greater for the rest of us in the long run.

Boy’s Names – April 8 – May 27, 2013

Nicholas “Nico” Daniel * Cameron Scott * Kaleb Allen * Kyle Scott * Blake Alexander * Bryce Lawrence * Josiah H * Dillon Thomas * Rylan Patrick * Terrell Jalen * Adam Pekelo * Jeremiah * Anthony William * James Peter * Aadith Parashar * Evan Joseph * Henry James * Samuel Joseph * Ta’Seair – Brayden Miner * Michael Annthony * Luis A * Jackson Dean * Gavin Phoenix * Joseph Michael * Brayden Eric * Mustafa Yagiz * Riley Jacob * Jayce Michael * Gabriel Matthias * Jude McKay * Liam Coman * Maddox Richard * Jy’Zier Tyree * Mykael Jonas * Nehemiah Tyshawn * James Robert-Connor * William * Daemere Blake * Joseph Samuel * David Vincent * Ja’Meak J’ermel * Harrison Sebastian * Paul Thomas * Omar Sharieff * A’Legend Desi J’nere * Aaron Rodger * Husseini Omark * Evan Derek * Naphtali Allyn * Tate John * Carter Jackson * Jackson Carl * Ryan Paul * Malayki James * Jeffrey John * Wynne Jabari * Ethan Michael * Carter Thomas * Markus Edward * Henry Russel-Connor * Rogun James * Kody Robert * Ka’Itarie Ny’Quawan * Carter John * Michael David * Jose Torres * Trent James * Isaish Jacob * Cameron James * Iziel Jenuel * Isaac Charles * Grant Albert * Gabriel Thomas * Ryan Anthony * Zackary James * Lucas John * Henry Michael * Caleb Scott * Sawyer Charles Ivan * Javier * Antonio Enrique * Ji’King Delvon * Gabriel James * Franklin C * Nehemiah James * Cayden * Elijah Thomas * Mason Robert * Liam Michael * Jeremy Norman * Levi Kyrstopher * Andrew James Brendan Matthew * Ashton Lyn * Dashontay S * Austin Joseph * Dennis Mario * Anthony * Erik * Joseph Michael * Cayden John * Matthew Scott * Nicsnan * Avery James * Ngong * Alexander David * James Fraver * Trevor Austin * Caleb Elijah David * William Deming * Noah Laurence * Brysen D * Nolan Michael * Jonathan Lee-Bently * Logan George * Logan Christopher * Mason C * Key’Veil Jermaine * Alex Nelson * Ethan James * Gavin Alexander * Eli James * Weston Noah * Keegan Ansley * Jordan Skyler * Eli Patrick * Kole Nathan * Jacob Martin * Miles Xavier * Jackson Zane * Maximus Ryan * Shawn Patrick * Lucian Joseph * Brodie A * Ian Lucas * Jackson Eli * Dominick Americo * Maxwell Richard * Kaiden Ethan * Avion Demar * Matthew William * Logan Cody * Noah James * Anthony Salvatore * Mason Gary * Alexander James * Louis * Lee Robert * Ethan * Carlos Zahir * Bhargav * Josiah Hyet * Jacob Michael * Reece Henry * Ryan James * Cory Maurice * Matthew Jacob * Justin Bernard * Thomas Michael * Ambrose Wilson * Henry James * Dymarion Ernest Lee * Tanner Richard * Logan Mathias * Frederick Maurice * Blake Edward * Lucas James * Jacob Adison * Xane Matthew * Conor Allison
This is the last time I will post boys names because these posts interfere with people when they try to Google themselves and they get frustrated.

Obama’s Bad Week

Obama had a very bad week if you listen to the media. He met with Russian President, Putin, to discuss Syria. Syria is weighing on all our minds, but is a conundrum. Assad is a bad leader but the groups arrayed against him are the confusing part. There does not seem to be one group of rebels and Al-Qaeda is possibly involved. There is no clear image of what result Syrians have in mind beyond getting rid of Assad. Egypt hasn’t done very well with their unfocused revolution. They got rid of Mubarak and ended up with a military dictatorship which doesn’t look like it is going away.

This week we got word that a ship filled with Russian arms was headed towards Syria. After we got crazy about this we were told that the Russian arms were possibly headed to a Russian base to reinforce it. We also hear that the CIA may be supplying weapons to Syria. Then we get the photo op picture of Putin leaning away from Obama as Obama leans towards the Russian leader and the media suddenly are experts in reading cross-cultural body language, so they intimate that Putin wants no part of whatever Obama is offering and that Putin is distancing himself from Obama. Obama later says that the media did not have enough insight into this exchange to make a proper interpretation, but the photo is out there and so is the commentary.
Eric Holder was held in contempt this week for refusing to supply additional paperwork about “fast and furious” to The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee investigating him, a committee heavily weighted with Republicans. Obama stood behind his Attorney General and used his power of executive privilege to deny access to any more paperwork but we are left wondering if this is an issue of national security or merely a cover-up. None of us are happy with what we have heard about “fast and furious” (although this program began under Bush but was known by the name Project Gunrunner). Allowing American guns to end up in the hands of the Mexican drug cartels with the end result that an American Border Guard is killed by an American weapon – this shocked us. What could possibly be the point of arming drug runners with American weapons? Were we hoping to trace them as they left a trail of death across Mexico? It makes you want to slap your head and “what were they thinking”? However, it is entirely possible that the Republican Party has engineered the timing of this investigation to coincide with the latter stages of the 2012 election. If Eric Holder resigns, as Republicans want him to do, Obama loses another of his team of experts that came with him to the White House, some of the responsibility for this “fast and furious” fiasco taints Obama. Furthermore the House does not have to worry about doing the things we need them to do like pass the transportation bill and make sure that college loan interest rates don’t double, because they are busy turning Eric Holder into a criminal and tarring Obama with the same brush.
We also hear that things did not go well at the meeting of the G20. What could possibly go well with any meeting right now that purports to deal with the global economy? Europe just made their most recent moves and is in waiting mode. Five American banks were just downgraded. There is not much good news out there for anyone. The Republicans act like they could do better. They are firmly on board with the Paul Ryan budget and they think it is a magic bullet. Well don’t believe them. There is no magic bullet to reverse the economic changes which are rocking our world right now. We do need to spend much more carefully than we have in the past. We need to make very careful decisions about where an influx of dollars will do the most good and we have to tighten our belts in other areas. But the Republicans and Paul Ryan are obsessed with the idea that privatizing everything is the answer for America. Read the Gail Collins article from the NYT for 6/21/2012. Read the Paul Krugman article from the NYT for 6/22/12. At least get another point of view before you decide to go all out for the gospel according to Paul Ryan.
The Republican Party has also continued with its campaign for preventing Obama from accomplishing anything. They then act very upset when Obama does an end run around them to make any little baby step that can count as progress. This time Obama made his Immigration Policy Decision to allow young illegal immigrants in America to extend their stay for 2 years at a time. This allows these young people to plan a future. This decision on the part of Obama gave Republicans an opening to rant that Obama trashes the American Constitution for political gain. It also allows the GOP to deplore the use of a stopgap solution instead of a real, long term solution to the problem of illegal immigrants. The only plan I have heard from Republicans is centered on deportation. The GOP is trying to make this a jobs issue. They are saying that Obama has not created jobs for Americans or illegal immigrants and they are trying to get people riled up because these illegals will now be competing for the few jobs that are available. I have to give the Republicans credit; they never waste an opportunity for spin.
So Obama, you made it through a very tough week and the only good thing that happened, according to the media, is that the Supreme Court did not make the Affordable Health Care Plan unconstitutional yet. Maybe all this negativity in one week will set up your karma for a more positive week during the last week of June. Hang in there. We also realize that your week may not have been as negative as the media painted it.

Girl’s Names – April 8, 2012 to May 27, 2012

These are the names given to girls according to our local newspaper:
Alla Jean * Lily Grace * Alyssa Shea * Paige McKenna * Trinity Lynn * Mejandra Anita * Isabelle Rae * Orianna * Madelyn Grace * Aubrie Marie * Melina Anne * Annjulia Justine * Rebekah Riley * MaKenzie Rose * Mya Jan * Taraji * Charlotte Jeanne * Ellery Mary * Yarelis Marie * Christiana Marie * Sophie Renee * Jada Irene-Elea * Dilynn Charlotte * Mikalina Elizabeth * Denali Grace * Savannah Rose * Isabelle Heather * Cadence * Madison Marie * Shameka Ja’Liyah Saray * Mikeya Marie * Lea Andrea * Arianna Bella * Marie * Kayleigh Kay * Charlei Rainne * Anna Loretta * Gianna Leigh * Carmellah Aleice *Amelia June * Layla Francis * Willa Rose * Jessica Marie * Grace Ann * Finley Eva * Layla Isabelle * Carmella-Jean Marie * Gracelynn Mae * Emilia Lynn * Isabella * Jamela * Gianina Grace * Sophia Margheurite * Danika Lee * Fra’Shaunna Loren Reanea * Katalia Lynn * Lillian Michelina * Shawniece * Tynica * Alaina Dale * Kashlyn * Kaylee Mae * Hayleigh Elizabeth * Kiley Marie * Ally-Marie * Natalie Sue * M’Laina Jennette * Jes’Saya Viola * Nehvayai *Allyson Sky * Emma Lee * Trinity Aaliyah-Skye * Madelaine Mary * Katelin Emily * Kaliah Llyana * Malaysia Dakota * Emelia Ryan * Lillian Rose * Asminia * Andrea Leann * Kaitlyn Mary * Ella Kai * Jemma Athena * Susanna Mae * Ella Marie * Raegan Lynn * Kaylu Ann * Harper Claire * Adrienne Rose * Brooklyn Rae * Grace Ann Marie * Koharu Olivia * Bailey Star * Baelen Sophina * Hannah * Jenna * Molly Park * Madelynn Elizabeth * Jayani Noelle * Kenzy * Greta Schuelke * Tresta Lynn * Clara June * Amelia Renae * Zoey Grace * Lily Anne * Kendall Suzanne * Leah Janette * Braelynn Renee * Luna * Akeeri Alese * Lorelai Susan * Arianny Elise * Isabella * Luna Elaine – Alexis Amaya * Charlotte Reese * Sierra Amor * Orysya Marie * Elise * A’Kirah Aashiyana * LaKoda Rae * X’treya Gladys * Emelia Grace * Lydia Rae * Vanessa Francesca * Kimberly Grace * Claire Jae * Suenaidys Leanet * Isabella Catherine * Paige Elizabeth * Valerie Virginia * Victoria * Ry’leigh * Leijah Rose * Elena Grace * Genevieve * Anisa * Isabella * Kayla Sophia * McKenzie Lynn * Avaiyiaa Sa’Ryle * Joneylis * Braylee Elizabeth * Olivia * Monroe * Klara Nicoletta * Lynn * Devyn Jane * Carol Corrine * Keziah Marie
This is my last post of girl’s names as these posts tend to mess up people’s Google searches.

June Book List, 2012

This month, June, 2012, I went back to the independent booksellers to see what books were looking good to them. Right now I am reading The Pale King by the late David Foster Wallace. The Game of Thrones books by George R. R. Martin are my entertainment for the summer; and I just got the latest Sophie Kinsella title, I’ve Got Your Number, on CD, so it will be a while before I get to the books on this June list, although I have Train Dreams on hold at the library. Enjoy  your summer reading!

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel – Henry VIII and Thomas Cromwell – it is dangerous to give a king his heart’s desire.

Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan – 3 generations of badly damaged Irish Catholic women at the family summer home seek acceptance from each other
Train Dreams by Denis Johnson – epic tale packed into a novella length book – the story of Robert Grainer but it’s not the story; it’s the setting and the mood – highly recommended
The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta – what happens to those who are left after the “rapture” or some similar mass disappearance
The Sisters Brothers by Patrick DeWitt – Starts as a Western but “becomes, in effect, a different kind of novel, profoundly literary and devoted to serious philosophical meditation.” (Brutal moments)
To Be Sung Underwater by Tom McNeal – married women remember their first loves
What Alice Forgot by Liane Moiarty –after an accident a woman forgets the last 10 years of her life, her marriage, her three children and her pending divorce to the love of her life
Home by Toni Morrison – an angry, self-loathing Korean vet comes back to face racism in America
Istanbul Passage by Joseph Kanon – a spy novel that takes place in Istanbul in 1945
Calico Joe by John Grisham – A classic story and a great baseball book
The Yard by Alex Grecian – Scotland Yard in Victorian England
The Newlyweds by Nell Freudenberger – Bangladeshi woman marries engineer in Rochester, NY and tells about her culture shock.
A Lady Cyclist’s Guide to Kashgar by Suzanne Joinson – I love the title – In 1923 Eva and her sister are missionaries on the Silk Road
2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson – she wrote the Mars trilogy I love – this is also futuristic – In the year 2312 a series of events begins on Mercury which forces man to confront our past, present, and future
The Lower River by Paul Theroux – a man left the Peace Corps in Malawi to rescue his family business, now without responsibilities he returns – what will he find?

From July’s list but I can’t wait:

Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness – this is the book that follows A Discovery of Witches in the trilogy that will be – sounds like it is as good as the first book, since it left the reviewer in “happy anticipation of much more intelligent entertainment to come.”