I was on vacation for part of December, so I got to read more than usual!

Fiction: Love Waltzes In by Alana Albertson – Contemporary romance in which the description of life as a dancer on a celebrity ballroom dance show, and the associated soap opera plot, was much more compelling than the romance, which totally failed to grab me. Heroine is a professional dancer who wants to have a family; hero was her partner and first love when they were teenagers, before he left the sport to become a marine.

Breaking the Rules (Troubleshooters Book 16) by Suzanne Brockmann – Excellent travel reading, even though it had been a long while since I read book 15. So far as I can tell, this is the last of the series. Various romances and romantic issues mingle with a human trafficking case and a custody battle, so I kept turning pages.

A Man to Die For by Eileen Dryer featured an ER nurse who realizes the hot new doctor is a serial killer. A cat-and-mouse thriller with lots of terrific ER detail (the writer was a nurse). There’s also a low-key romance with the nurse and a cop. Fun!

Thankless in Death (In Death, Book 37) by J.D. Robb was a rather lackluster entry in this long-running series, but it kept my attention while in airports.

Dreaming Spies by Laurie R. King (galley) – latest in the Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes series. Russell and Holmes go to Japan in the 1920s and then have an adventure in Oxford. I have no idea how accurate the historical detail was, but I enjoyed it.

True Pretenses (Lively St. Lemeston Book 2) by Rose Lerner, which made sense even though I haven’t read book one in the series yet. It’s a historical romance in which a Jewish con man falls for a political hostess, which doesn’t really tell you anything about the characters, who are complex and engaging and don’t always know their own minds. Bonus points for the lack of the standard arrogant dominant male and a heroine who knows what she wants and is not ashamed of wanting. One of the author’s sources was almost certainly The Regency Underworld by Donald Low. I enjoyed the book a lot.

Nonfiction: Ernie Pyle’s War: America’s Eyewitness to World War II by James Tobin. It is well-regarded for good reason, I think, and made me want to read more of his work. It’s a vivid picture of Pyle as a person.