In the beginning...

...there were The Flyaways, a family who traveled in their miraculous flying machine having daring adventures with Goldilocks and Cinderella. The first in the 3-book series by Alice Dale Hardy was published by Grosset and Dunlap in 1925 and copies are almost extinct. Few people remember Ma and Pa, Tommy and Susie Flyaway now.

I became acquainted with them on my grandfather's lap, my dear Grandpa Baker who read and read and read to me every evening for as many years as I can remember. I would hold my breath as each chapter ending neared, hoping he would not stop. I would keep begging for "just one more" chapter until his voice got so hoarse I would have to run to his room to get his throat lozenges.

Over the years we covered all of Uncle Wiggly and Honey Bunch, the Bobbsey Twins, the Five Little Peppers, the Wind in the Willow series, some of them more than once. He read to me until long after I could read everything for myself, until I was into Beverly Gray, Trixie Belden, Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys. I was safe and happy snuggled up on the couch with him and that feeling has never left me. I still read and read and read, and it still makes me feel safe and happy.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

CJ Box and Linwood Barclay

If you are a fan of Joe Pickett, the game warden hero, you'll recognize April, his foster child, who was killed. Well, April appears to have turned up in Zero Down via text message to Joe's daughter Sheridan and the whole family wants to find her, if indeed, she exists. How could this have happened? Good question and it seems pretty unlikely, but the story is good and very readable as always. Joe's friend, the fugitive falconer Nate, is part of the action, as well as a pitiable bad guy, and his despicable son, who has taken a young blonde runaway under his wing. Is it April?

I should add Barclay to my list of authors to watch as he has written some good ones. Another disappearing daughter, this time Tim Blakes's 17-year-old Sydney. While staying with her divorced dad for the summer, Tim discovers Syd has been lying to him about where she works, and he is consumed with the quest to track her down when she doesn't come home. Her bloody car is located and someone sends Tim on a goose chase across the country following a lead while they trash his house and plant cocaine there. I'll be finishing this one today.

The end - this was a definite winner (titled Fear The Worst). The action never stopped and the ending revealed a surprising and emotional twist.

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