Mar 272014
 

Meet Lily White, Long Island criminal defense lawyer. Smart, savvy, and down-to-earth, Lee can spot a phony the way her haughty mother can spot an Armani. Enter handsome career con man Norman Torkelson, charged with strangling his latest mark after bilking her out of her life’s savings. As the astonishing twists and reverses of the Torkelson case are revealed, so too is the riveting story behind Lee;s life.

Critically acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Susan Isaacs has crafted her most dazzling novel of manners and morality. Lily White is a brilliant story of con artists and true lovers, of treachery and devotion—and of one brave lawyer’s triumphant fight for justice.

Summary from Amazon.com

Mar 242014
 

For Christmas of 2013, I decided to make my grandmother a necklace that she might have an easier time putting on. I’d seen several designs with the clasp at the front and thought that might be easier for her.

It took some time to come up with the rest of the design. I tried several things, but nothing seemed to grab me like right-angle weave with Swarovski crystal pearls. I’d tried other crystal pearls, but they were painted and the paint started chipping before I even started beading.

The more crystals I added, the heavier the piece became. It was heavier than I’d expected and I started to worry that it would be too much for her. I stepped down to smaller and smaller pearls to cut the weight and make the piece less bulky on her neck. I hoped that would make up for the weight.

Making Grandma's Necklace

I forgot to take pictures as I was beading. I wanted to show some of the steps, but I did get a picture after I started embellishing. The picture was taken with my cell, so it’s harder to see the detail, but it’s a basic idea. You can see in the smaller pearls what it looked like before the embellishments.

Right-angle weave is my favorite stitch to embellish. It just adds a depth that the piece lacks and brings everything in tighter.

Grandma's NecklaceHere’s a close-up of the finished front of the necklace. Seed beads and 4mm crystal pearls adorn the front. I thought it turned out pretty well even though the seed beads weren’t the color I thought they were. I was looking for a little more contrast in the cream pearl colors. I didn’t want them to disappear into the other beads or the 4mm cream colored crystal pearls to disappear into them.

Grandma's NecklaceA close-up of the finished back. Most of the time I would only embellish the front, but I wanted it to be less noticeable if the necklace happened to flip over on one side while she was wearing it. I didn’t want to add more 4mm crystal pearls because I wanted it to lay flat, so I used two colors of seed beads on the backside. It also added some extra strength to the necklace.

Grandma's NecklaceThe toggle clasp didn’t look quite right just hanging there in front, so I added some dangles with jump rings. I figured if I didn’t like the look, I could always remove them later. While I wasn’t completely happy with the look, I thought the dangles added a needed distraction from the clasp.

The most important part, once Grandma saw how the clasp worked she was able to put it on by herself. She really seemed to like it and I was happy with the resulting smile on her face.

These are the only pictures I took. I will try to remember to take more pictures at different stages the next time I take on a project this detailed.

Mar 212014
 

I will be working on getting caught up over the next few weeks. Life decided to kick me in the teeth repeatedly and updates have fallen behind.

I have numerous projects to post, writing updates to make, recipes to post on Community Cookbook and Bookshelf entries to catch up on, so there will be plenty to read soon.

Apologies to those signed up for updates. You’ll be getting quite a few close together.

Mar 192014
 

Troy Turner and Rand Duchay were barely teenagers when they murdered a younger child. While Troy died violently behind bars, the hulking, slow-witted Rand managed to survive his stretch. Now, at age twenty-one, he’s emerged a haunted, rootless man with a pressing need: to talk—once again—with psychologist Alex Delaware. But when Rand’s life comes to a brutal end, his words die with him.

LAPD homicide detective Milo Sturgis suspects that either karma or revenge caught up with Rand, but Delaware’s suspicions run darker. As Delaware and Sturgis retrace their steps through a grisly murder case that devastated a community, they discover madness, suicide, and even uglier truths waiting to be unearthed. And the nearer they come to understanding an unspeakable crime, the more harrowingly close they get to unmasking a monster hiding in plain sight.

Summary from Amazon.com

Mar 102014
 

The instant #1 bestseller from author Michael Connelly–“the best mystery writer in the world” (GQ)–brings back the hero of The Poet in a terrifying new thriller.

Forced out of the Los Angeles Times amid the latest budget cuts, newspaperman Jack McEvoy decides to go out with a bang, using his final days at the paper to write the definitive murder story of his career.

He focuses on Alonzo Winslow, a 16-year-old drug dealer in jail after confessing to a brutal murder. But as he delves into the story, Jack realizes that Winslow’s so-called confession is bogus. The kid might actually be innocent.

Jack is soon running with his biggest story since The Poet made his career years ago. He is tracking a killer who operates completely below police radar–and with perfect knowledge of any move against him. Including Jack’s.

Summary from Amazon.com

Mar 022014
 

Only a handful of fictional characters are recognized by first name alone. Dean Koontz’s Odd Thomas is one such literary hero, who has come alive in readers’ imaginations as he explores the greatest mysteries of this world and the next with his inimitable wit, heart, and quiet gallantry. Now Koontz follows Odd as he is drawn onward, to a destiny he cannot imagine. Haunted by dreams of an all-encompassing red tide, Odd is pulled inexorably to the sea, to a small California coastal town where nothing is as it seems.

Summary from Amazon.com

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