Monday, December 31, 2007

Books Read in 2007

Another year has come and gone and my mind is 63 books richer. Here is a list of the books I finished in 2007. You can follow the links to their journal entries on BookCrossing; those books without a link were either borrowed, or are in my permanent collection for the moment.

1. Wicked, by Gregory Maguire

2. Cold Case Squad, by Edna Buchanan
3. Shadows, by Edna Buchanan

4. Total Control, by David Baldacci
5. Full Scoop, by Janet Evanovich and Charlotte Hughes
6. An American Childhood, by Annie Dillard
7. Anne of Green Gables, by Lucy Maud Montgomery
8. Chocolat, by Joanne Harris
9. Captive of My Desires, by Johanna Lindsey
10. The Bridge Over The River Kwai, by Pierre Boulle

11. Dead Watch, by John Sandford
12. The Dressmaker, by Elizabeth Birkelund Oberbeck
13. Shock, by Robin Cook
14. Motion to Suppress, by Perri O'Shaughnessy
15. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, by J.K. Rowling (reread)
16. Sparkling Cyanide, by Agatha Christie
17. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, by J.K. Rowling (reread)
18. Ordeal by Innocence, by Agatha Christie

19. The Red Pony, by John Steinbeck
20. The Shawshank Redemption, by Stephen King
21. Eleven On Top, by Janet Evanovich
22. The Chin Kiss King, by Ana Veciana-Suarez
23. The Romanov Prophecy, by Steve Berry
24. Three Fates, by Nora Roberts
25. Mount Vernon Love Story: A Novel of George and Martha Washington, by Mary Higgins Clark
26. A Long Way Down, by Nick Hornby
27. Planet of the Apes, by Pierre Boulle
28. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, by J.K. Rowling
29. The Regatta Mystery and Other Stories, by Agatha Christie

30. Suite Française, by Irène Némirovsky
31. Twelve Sharp, by Janet Evanovich
32. Looking for Mr. Goodbar, by Judith Rossner
33. Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley
34. On What Grounds, by Cleo Coyle
35. The Lovely Bones, by Alice Sebold

36. The Seal Wife, by Kathryn Harrison
37. Sgt. Piggy's Lonely Hearts Club Comic: A Pearls Before Swine Treasury, by Stephan Pastis
38. Through the Grinder, by Cleo Coyle
39. Around the World in Eighty Days, by Jules Verne
40. Bridge to Terabithia, by Katherine Paterson (reread)
41. Sellevision, by Augusten Burroughs
42. The Testament, by John Grisham
43. Lie Down With Lions, by Ken Follett (reread)
44. Metro Girl, by Janet Evanovich
45. The New People: They Came From The Sea, by Alex Steele

46. I'll Be Seeing You, by Mary Higgins Clark
47. Artemis Fowl: The Lost Colony, by Eoin Colfer
48. Water for Elephants, by Sara Gruen
49. Repair to Her Grave, by Sarah Graves
50. Latte Trouble, by Cleo Coyle

51. The Eyre Affair, by Jasper Fforde
52. The Lady and the Unicorn, by Tracy Chevalier
53. A Room with a View, by E.M. Forster
54. Spencerville, by Nelson DeMille
55. The Christmas Thief, by Mary Higgins Clark and Carol Higgins Clark

56. C.S. Lewis Through the Shadowlands, by Brian Sibley
57. The Floor of the Sky, by Pamela Carter Joern
58. This Side of Married, by Rachel Pastan
59. The Twits, by Roald Dahl
60. Turtle Moon, by Alice Hoffman
61. The Giver, by Lois Lowry
62. The Boss's Christmas Baby, by Trish Morey
63. The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak

Friday, December 28, 2007

Wild Release #110

I got this book from my sister and was supposed to release it, but something about identical twins switching places and one of them having the boss's Christmas baby intrigued me, so I decided to read it first. I used to read these *all* the time when I was younger. In fact, I learned a lot about geography and other cultures by reading Harlequins. Nothing comes close to the classics of the 1970s and early 1980s, but this one was pretty entertaining. I don't know how soon I'll read another, but "The Boss's Christmas Baby," by Trish Morey, was a nice holiday read. :) I left it stuck in the slats of the bench at 101 North Main in Greensburg. Perhaps someone in that building will find it on their way home and be as entertained as I was.


My 49th RABCK is on its way to 1lilbookworm in Canada. I got a nice PM from her requesting it, and as the postage to Canada isn't *too* exorbitant (yet!), "Julie of the Wolves," by Jean Craighead George is heading north of the border as a "Welcome to BookCrossing" RABCK. Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Wild Release #109

I needed to stock up on Diet Mt. Dew after work, so I headed to the Giant Eagle at Hempfield Square (next to Target). It was getting cold outside, so I thought I'd leave "Henry and Mudge Get the Cold Shivers," by Cynthia Rylant, in the fire engine ride outside the café door.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Wild Releases #105 - #108

My sixth SSM challenge was occasion to release four perfectly themed books from the Jewel Kingdom series for children: "The Ruby Princess Runs Away," "The Diamond Princess Saves the Day," "The Ruby Princess Sees a Ghost," and "The Emerald Princess Finds a Fairy." I left them in individual zippered bags propped up against a planter outside the door Beeghly and Company on Fourth and Main Streets in downtown Greensburg. Mission Accomplished!

This week's challenge, set by dicentragirl, follows:

What: SSM 1223-Sparkle
When: December 23, 2007
How: Let it sparkle, let it shine. Find books on silver, gold, gems and jewelry (or other sparkly things). Release them in a jewelry store or jewelry section of a store.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Wild Release #104

Ever since I bought this book at Goodwill, I knew where I wanted to release it. I finally got my chance today when I released Danielle Steel's "The Ranch" next to the Hidden Valley Ranch salad dressings at the Eastgate Giant Eagle. The store was swarming with pre-holiday shoppers, so I hope it finds a nice new home soon.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Wild Releases #102 & #103

It was a beautiful day for a walk today, so I decided to do my in-town errands by foot instead of by car at lunchtime. I had a couple of books that were ripe for release, as well; 'tis the season, after all. I left my first book, "The Grinch Meets His Max," by Antonia D. Bryan, propped up on a bench outside the Westmoreland County Courthouse on Pennsylvania Avenue. The second book, Caroline B. Cooney's "Freeze Tag," was left on a bench in the Pennsylvania Avenue Parklet next to Art-Tech.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


The Greensburg-Hempfield Area Library had a book sale this past weekend--all books were only 25¢, so I bought 60 of them, including "Rainbow Boys," by Alex Sanchez. In browsing one of the BookCrossing forums, I came across a wish list and was pleased to discover I could fulfill one of the wishes with this book. "Rainbow Boys" is on its way to boondockgrl86 in Maryland as a Christmas RABCK. Enjoy!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Wild Release #101

Alice Hoffman's "Turtle Moon" was released for my fifth SSM challenge. The book and release location were supposed to have a celestial theme, so, braving the cold weather and blowing snow, I left Turtle MOON on a ledge outside the entrance to the showroom of STAR Chevrolet Nissan Volvo on Route 30 in Greensburg. Mission Accomplished!

This week's challenge, set by dicentragirl, follows:

What: SSM 1216-Celestial
When: December 16, 2007
How: Books relating to stars, moon, planets, astronomy… Ideal release locations are planetariums, fortune tellers, or with the telescopes at a shop, but use your imagination.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Wild Release #100

Another milestone accomplished! "This Christmas," a collection of stories by Jane Green, Jennifer Coburn, and Liz Ireland, was my 100th Wild Release. I left it on a bench outside of The Boulevard, the restaurant next to Barnes & Noble in Greensburg. I saw a couple of people stop to look at it, but I don't know who ended up taking it with them--it was gone when I left the restaurant.

Wild Release #99

"The Twits," by Roald Dahl, was such a fun little book I couldn't wait to share it with some lucky finder. It's been a while since I left anything in the Apartment Rental Guide box on the sidewalk of the Helman-Ghrist parking lot on North Main Street in Greensburg, so I decided to leave it there. Protecting it from the rain was a good reason to put it there, too!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Wild Release #98

I braved a trip to the mall to finally get started on my Christmas shopping and thought it was a good time and place to leave Mary and Carol Higgins Clark's joint effort, "The Christmas Thief." I left it in a BookCrossing release bag propped up on the planter around the escalators at the Macy's end of the mall.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Wild Releases #96 & #97

Two very different books were released by me after work today. The first, "Free Fall," by Fern Michaels, is a chick-lit mystery-type book, which I left on the metal shelf next to the drive-thru night depository at Citizens Bank on Main Street. The second was "Captain Underpants and the Big, Bad Battle of the Bionic Booger Boy, Part 2: The Revenge of the Ridiculous Robo-Boogers," by Dav Pilkey, an irreverent book that uses a lot of bodily-function-type humor to amuse children (or those with the mindset of a child). I left this one in the aisle with all the party plates, cups, and favors at Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Store in Greensburg. Hopefully, some bored child who has been dragged there unwillingly by their mother will come away with this little treasure.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Wild Releases #94 & #95

I had two books to release for my fourth SSM challenge--"C.S. Lewis Through the Shadowlands," by Brian Sibley, and "The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe: The Creatures of Narnia," by Scout Driggs.

I spent all week trying to think of a good place to leave them and I kept coming up blank. Then I read today's newspaper and saw an ad for Staples, the office supply wonderland, and it clicked--C.S. Lewis' name is Clive STAPLES Lewis, so I left the Sibley book by the staples in Staples at sunset. Then I headed across the street to do some grocery shopping at Giant Eagle. I thought of leaving the other book by the $1 a night DVD rental machine, but I ended up leaving it in the free literature rack in the lobby. Mission Accomplished (x2)!

This week's challenge, set by dicentragirl, follows:

What: SSM 1202-The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe
When: December 2, 2007
How: C.S. Lewis’ birthday is this week (the 29th) Let’s celebrate by having a book release in his honor. Pick a book by C.S. Lewis or one that relates to lions, witches or wardrobes/clothes. Release in a clothing store or get creative (think closets, etc.).

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Wild Release #93

My car needed to have its oil changed and its tires rotated and aligned. Luckily, it coincided with my need to release "The Shark Mutiny," by Patrick Robinson, in a "manly" place. What better place for a book about wars, spies, and sabotage, than a garage full of mechanics and manly men waiting for their trucks to be fixed? I was very sneaky and left the book on a ledge leading up to the office in Import Export Tire in Latrobe; when I came back to pick up my car a few hours later, the book was gone!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Catch #10!

A second book from the Greensburg Holiday Parade was caught, bringing me into the double digits at last! "Charm City," by Laura Lippman, was caught by mbrant246. Thanks for picking up the book and welcome to BookCrossing!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Wild Release #92

It took me forever to read "Spencerville," by Nelson DeMille. I did read two other books for SSM missions between the first time I cracked open this book and the last time I closed it, so that could account for what took me so long! Since I'd been staring at the cover on my nightstand for so long, I was anxious to set it free as soon as I was done reading it. The opportunity presented itself tonight when I went to get takeout from Cozumel, THE best Mexican restaurant outside of Mexico. The margaritas on the rocks are a must-have when eating in. I left the book in a zippered plastic bag on the sidewalk rail by the front door.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Wild Release #91

"The Merchant of Venice," by William Shakespeare, was released at The Sunset Cafe in Greensburg as my third SSM challenge.

I had planned to leave "A Room with a View," by E.M. Forster, but as I was telling my niece how much I enjoyed the book, she asked if she could read it. Luckily, I had "The Merchant of Venice" as a backup. I left the book a couple of hours past sunset because I was otherwise engaged at 4:53 p.m., but I DID leave it at The Sunset Cafe, so at least I got a sunset in there! Mission Accomplished!

This week's challenge, set by dicentragirl, follows:

What: SSM 1118- Celebrating Different Cultures
When: November 18th, 2007
How: Pick books about a country other than your own, or books that take place in a country other than your own. Release locations can include ethnic sections of grocery stores, ethnic restaurants, specialty stores... Use your imagination!

Catch #9!

Finally, a catch! And of one of my favorite books, too. An Anonymous Finder's 5-year-old son noticed this at the end of the Greensburg Holiday Parade and took it home. That boy will have a bright future, I'm sure! Thanks for journaling, AF. I hope you and your son enjoy the book as much as I do.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Wild Releases #81 - #90

Today was the annual Holiday Parade in Downtown Greensburg--a fabulous opportunity to release lots of books. I convinced my sister and niece to go with me and act as human shields while I released a book or two on every block of the parade route. I think I was spied a couple of times, and though no catches have come in yet, I'm hopeful that they will. The books I released were: Charm City, by Laura Lippman; The Princeton Imposter, by Ann Waldron; The Horse and His Boy, by C.S.Lewis; Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, by Kate Douglas Wiggin; Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Brontë; Ellen Tebbits, by Beverly Cleary; The Sound and the Fury, by William Faulkner; Labyrinth, by Jon Land; The Mouse and the Motorcycle, by Beverly Cleary; and Class Clown, by Johanna Hurwitz.

Thursday, November 15, 2007


I saw a posting in one of the BookCrossing forums a few weeks ago looking for a copy of a couple of books, one of which I happened to have in my possession. I had to wait for Mom to finish reading it for her book club, but Sara Gruen's "Water for Elephants" is now on its way to BethanieKay in Texas so she can send it to her Secret Santa across the pond.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Wild Release #80

Another breakfast meeting at Eat 'n Park means another release on top of the newspaper boxes outside. I left Oliver Twist, by Charles Dickens, on my way into my breakfast meeting; it was gone by the time I left the restaurant to head back to the office. Now, how to get people to journal them as quickly as they pick them up?!?

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Wild Release #79

"The Lady and the Unicorn," by Tracy Chevalier, was released at The Westmoreland Museum of American Art in Greensburg as my second SSM challenge.

I fully expected the museum to be closed and the parking lot to be empty, it being Sunday and all, but the lights were blazing when I pulled in and people were leaving left and right. I had to circle the block a few times before I was sure that nobody would witness my drop (I like to be stealthy. You don't have to be, but I like to be). I was finally able to leave the book in a BookCrossing release bag propped up on a statue in the parking area just a smidge past sunset. Mission Accomplished!

This week's challenge, set by dicentragirl, follows:

What: SSM 1111- Art for Art's Sake
When: November 11th 2007, at Sunset
How: With the birthdays of Georgia O’Keefe and Monet this week, we celebrate art and artists. Pick a book about your favorite artist or maybe an instructional art book. Releases can be at galleries, art supply stores, or anyplace that says “ART” to you.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Wild Release #78

I met my beautiful new niece, Maggie, today. She's just a little over a day old and smiled every time I held her--she has good taste. I found the perfect book to release in the lobby of Magee Women's Hospital in Pittsburgh--"Blood Work," by Michael Connelly. "Blood Work." Get it? You can get "Blood Work" in the hospital. Hahahaha!!! Unless someone else finds it before you get there. I crack me up.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Wild Release #77

I had to do a little grocery shopping for the St. Vincent DePaul food bank's Christmas bags (stuffing, instant potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce, coffee, tea, dessert, etc.) so I headed to Aldi Foods in Greensburg. They have really good prices on a bunch of stuff and I was able to fill the bag for about $15. I left "The Nanny Diaries," by Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus in one of the grocery carts that are secured out on the sidewalk. You should be able to get to it without putting a quarter in for the cart ;)

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Wild Release #76

"Latte Trouble," by Cleo Coyle, was released at The American Coffee Shop in Greensburg as my first SSM challenge. SSM stands for Sunday Sunset Mission and apparently, they used to happen all the time. Everyone around the world would release a particular kind of book at a particular kind of place on a predetermined Sunday at their own sunset time. When I first started BookCrossing, I noticed an unused forum called "SSMs" whose description was "The forum to discuss top-secret SSMs. If you don't know what they are, DON'T POST HERE!" I waited and waited for someone to post something there and finally was rewarded. Now the SSMs have started up again and I'm looking forward to participating in as many as I can.

This week's challenge, set by dicentragirl, follows:

What: SSM 1104- Coffee, Tea, Come Read Me!
When: November 4th 2007, at Sunset
Who: YOU!
Where and how: Grab your book to be released and head to your favorite coffee house or tea shop.

Although The American Coffee Shop was closed, it being Sunday and all, I left it in a BookCrossing release bag propped up on one of the chairs on their sidewalk just a smidge past sunset. Mission Accomplished!

Friday, November 02, 2007

Wild Release #75

Well, the whole month of October passed with zero catches. I guess that will happen, but it's disappointing just the same. Looking forward to a better catch rate in November, I released The Complete Plays of Sophocles at Lynch Field in Greensburg. I left it in a plastic bag propped up on a bench that looks at the inside track.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Wild Release #74

It's been a whole month without a catch for me--far more tricks than treats, unfortunately. In a last effort to get a catch in October, I released "The Romanov Prophecy," by Steve Berry, at Panera Bread in Greensburg. I left it on a table outside on the sidewalk--a nice treat for whomever finds it.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Wild Release #73

It's the day before Halloween is celebrated here in the United States, so I headed for Target to stock up on some candy. We only get a handful of trick-or-treaters at my house, but you can never have too much candy. While I was there, I thought it was a great opportunity to release a book. I left Harper Lee's "To Kill a Mockingbird" on one of the benches on the sidewalk where the employees usually take breaks. This is one of my favorite books and I wish it well in its travels.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Wild Release #72

I went to Goodwill last night and bought ten books, one of which was "Bridget Jones's Diary," by Helen Fielding. Having already read and released my copy, all I had to do for this one was label and release it. I left it on top of the outermost drive-thru ATM at Dollar Bank, Greengate Centre. It's a little inconspicuous because you have to look up to see it; if you're in a truck or SUV, you'll have a better chance of noticing even if you're not looking!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Wild Release #71

Cracker Barrel is a great place to leave books. The one in New Stanton, Pa., is at the nexus of the Pennsylvania Turnpike, Route 70, and Route 119, so it gets lots of travelers from all over the country. It's always a hopping place, too, and you usually have to wait for a table. They have a long sidewalk outside lined with benches and rocking chairs for sale. I left a little book called "Reptiles" on one of the benches as we were going inside; it was gone by the time we came out.

Wild Release #70

This is one of those books that just screams "THEME RELEASE!" I left Mary Higgins Clark's "I'll Be Seeing You" in a waiting room at America's Best Contacts & Eyeglasses in Monroeville where I had my eyes checked this morning. All is OK with the eyes, contact lenses are on order, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed that the book finds a new home and a journaler today!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Wild Release #69

I made a slight detour to St. Clair Park while running errands for work so I could wild release "Repair to Her Grave," by Sarah Graves. I left it propped on the ledge of the bulletin board just outside the North Maple Street entrance. It's in a plastic bag, so hopefully it, and the bulletin board "roof" will protect it from the elements until someone picks it up and takes it home with them.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Wild Releases #67 & #68

Another Friday night out at a restaurant was the perfect opportunity to leave another book. I left Machines, a cute little Q&A children's book, on a bench in the vestibule of Giannilli's on Thomas School Road in Greensburg after devouring a delicious pierogie pizza.

I also found out that a book I gave my sister to read is now out in the wild. She left Dead Watch, by John Sandford, on a pay phone at the Four Points Sheraton Hotel in Greensburg last week.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Wild Release #66

I have been looking for a good place to leave Ken Follett's "Lie Down with Lions." Some obvious places I was considering were at the zoo, or outside a bank in downtown Pittsburgh that has lion statues outside. Since I haven't been to the zoo or downtown in a while, the book has remained with me, biding its time. Until today. I was at Lynch Field in Greensburg eating my lunch and reading a book, and when I looked up towards the running track, there was a helicopter. Helicopters were very important to the story of "Lie Down with Lions," so I had an "Aha!" moment. Perfect place to leave the book. So I did, as you can see.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Wild Release #65

I decided to visit IKEA on my way home from dropping my brother off at the airport. Since I rescued a couple of books from the recycling bin there on my last visit, this time I decided to leave one behind. "A Little Princess," by Frances Hodgson Burnett, was left in the children's area of the marketplace on top of some white and pink shelves. I was looking for somewhere princessy to leave it, but this was as close as I could get.

Wild Release #64

Another breakfast meeting at Eat 'n Park means another release on top of the newspaper boxes outside. I left Laura Ingalls Wilder's "By the Shores of Silver Lake" on my way back to the office. This is getting to be a habit!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Wild Release #63

It was a dark and stormy night tonight. OK, it wasn't stormy, but it was dark. The full moon hasn't quite risen in the sky yet, so it seemed the opportune time to release "Heart of Darkness," by Joseph Conrad. I left it at First National Bank in the West Point Plaza, propped up on the ATM machine outside.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Catch #8!

I'm feeling rather idyllic now since "The Idylls of the King" was indeed caught at last night's Olive Garden outing. It's my first catch of the month and it truly brightened my day. Thanks for picking it up and joining, DevPsyProf! Welcome to BookCrossing!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Wild Release #62

A year ago yesterday, I was having the most fabulous meal of my life in a beautiful old stone villa in Tuscany, Italy. Today, I had dinner at the Olive Garden Italian Restaurant. Definitely not the same, but still good in its own way. The Olive Garden in Greensburg is always teeming with people--you generally have to wait for a table every night of the week. I always found this strange considering that there is a large portion of the population here that are Italian, and therefore, probably eat Italian more often than we German/Swiss do. Anyway, there are a few benches outside for the patient patrons to sit on while they wait, so I left "The Idylls of the King," by Alfred Lord Tennyson, for them. I believe I fed someone's mind tonight since the book was gone when we left.