May 23rd, 2013
The Boy In The Suitcase by Lene Kaaberbol & Agnete Friis
Despite its Nordic crime label, the title of this novel is is creepier than the book itself. I was expecting something very “SVU”, but the novel is less simplistic than the grim TV show.
The Boy in the Suitcase is the first in a series featuring Red Cross nurse Nina Borg. Nina is one of those do-gooders who champions the underdog while completely neglecting herself and her family. She’s a mild mess, but fiercely committed to doing the right thing even though her execution is frequently flawed.
I zipped through this one and look forward to reading the next novel in the series, Invisible Murder.
May 21st, 2013
It’s slim pickings out there for buyers. Inventory is at the lowest level in years, especially in Williamson County (see chart below.) For homes priced under $1,000,000, the remaining months in inventory is less than six months and less than sixty days in some neighborhoods.
Inventory fluxuates more in Davidson County, but if you are looking for a home listed for $500,000 or less, you’d better be ready to buy it when you see it.
Gone are the days when a property languished on the market for months, giving prospective home buyers the luxury to shop around, visit a home multiple times before making an offer (or not) and worry about financing later.
The current market with its low inventory and steady price increases rewards the ready, willing and able buyer with emphasis on ready.
If you’d like more details concerning single family home sales in Davidson County, Area Two (I-65 to Charlotte Pike), or Williamson County or condo sales in Davidson, I’m happy to email you a report.
||April-Remaining Months in Inventory
|$1,300K & up
May 18th, 2013
The Outhouse-an eco-friendly solution but perhaps not a family-friendly one!
Are you planning a bathroom remodel this year? If so, “go green.” Eco-friendly design is not a passing trend. You’ll save money on your energy bills and create value at resale too.
Here are some tips:
Bathrooms are water guzzlers. To minimize water consumption, choose sensory-activated faucets and low-flow toilets. Low-flow toilets received a bad rap when they were first introduced, but the technology has greatly improved. Instant efficiency is achieved when you replace your current toilet, which uses five gallons of water per flush with a dual flush, which use a maximum of 1.6 gallons.
As for floors, linoleum (yes, it is eco-friendly) and tile are good options. For vanity tops, natural stone is beautiful and green. There is a wide selection from which to choose, from the ubiquitous granite to a quartz composite know as engineered stone. For shower and tub tile, consider the fabulously juicy colors of recycled glass tiles. Be sure to use non-toxic tile sealants and caulking.
Most cabinets are made of wood that contains urea-formaldehyde, which can release harmful chemicals (VOC’s or volatile organic compounds) into your home for years after installation. The alternatives are solid wood cabinets or wood substitutes such as wheatboard, formaldehyde-free pressboard, or MDF (medium density fiber board.) Finish the cabinets with a non-toxic stain or paint.
As for lighting, fluorescent bulbs are the energy-efficient standard, but a bit harsh for the entire bathroom. Consider fluorescent light for general lighting and install halogens adjacent to the mirror and over the sink. Adding dimmer switches to existing light fixtures is an easy-to-install energy saver too.
May 9th, 2013
The highlights video tour of 6536 Radcliff!
May 7th, 2013
On a recent trip to NYC, my mom & I stopped by Crawford Doyle, the Upper East Side bookseller, and purchased an array of titles.
I read Vengeance, the fifth novel in the mystery series by Benjamin Black, on the return trip. But given my permanent book backlog, it may be a while before I get to the rest!
You can see from the list that my enthusiasm for the novels of Jane Gardam continues. Last Friends is the last in the Old Filth trilogy.
If you read one of these before I do, let me know what you think.
How It All Began by Penelope Lively
The Crowded Grave by Martin Walker
Vengeance by Benjamin Black
Last Friends by Jane Gardam
God on the Rocks by Jane Gardam
English, August by Upamanyu Chatterjee
At Last by Edward St. Aubyn
God on the Rocks
May 1st, 2013
Crusoe's Daughter by Jane Gardam
This is my third Gardam book in as many months. Having enjoyed Old Filth and The Man in the Wooden Hat, I turned to Crusoe’s Daughter which I picked up last Fall at Crawford Doyle.
Stylistically this novel published in 1985 is not dissimilar to the others, but Crusoe’s Daughter is an entirely original work and a personal favorite of Gardam’s.
Gardam was inspired by her mother’s childhood in north-east England in the early 20th C. In the small fishing village located next to a massive marsh, girls were expected to marry soon and appropriately (no farmers, dear!), have children, stay home and never express a desire for any intellectual stimulation beyond the Bible. Considering the shortage of men after WWI, the first two expectations were particularly harsh. The obligation never to work outside the home all but guaranteed a life of genteel poverty, and the lack of intellectual stimulation well, enough said– altogether a stifling life.
Presumably Gardam’s mom fared a bit better than the protagonist of Crusoe’s Daughter, Polly Flint. Read the rest of this entry »
April 30th, 2013
7702 sq ft, 6 bedrooms, 6 1/2 baths in convenient Devonshire
Easy access to Belle Meade, Green Hills & Brentwood
Down the road from Christ Presbyterian Academy & Ensworth High School
With 7702 square feet, 6 bedrooms & 6 1/2 baths, this home lives as well for your family’s active everyday life as it does for elegant entertaining
3-Purpose built home office
And not just some converted bedroom, but an honest to goodness designated office space.
4-Live in Closet
This is everywoman’s dream closet—bay window, 51 linear feet of hanging space, a comfy place to sit and acres of additional storage.
With loads of cabinets, double ovens, granite counters & five burner gas cooktop, you will be cooking like Julia!
Call me at 615.804.3991 for more information or to make an appointment to see this stunning home.
April 29th, 2013
The Sound of Broken Glass by Deborah Crombie
Detective Inspector Gemma James and her husband are back on the case. Or rather Gemma is back; hubby Detective Superintendent Duncan Kincaid is on leave taking care of their three-year old foster daughter. But unsurprisingly, despite nanny duties, Duncan takes a hand in Gemma’s case.
Initially there is the death of a well-respected barrister. Murder or suicide? Then there is another similarly staged death that bears no obvious link to the first one. But as Gemma investigates, she finds that a connection is present, just not a present-day one.
Another appealing addition to this long running series.
April 26th, 2013
Patriarch: The Remarkable Life and Turbulent Times of Joseph P. Kennedy by David Nasaw
A Multiple Choice Quiz. Choose One:
Joseph P. Kennedy was a
1. Helicopter parent
2. Movie mogul
4. Stock speculator
5. Staunch Catholic
6. First chairman of the SEC
7. First Irish American ambassador to the Court of St. James
8. Habitual womanizer
9. Father of a U.S. president, U.S. Attorney General and U.S. Senator
10. Liquor importer
11. Owner of the Merchandise Mart in Chicago
12. All of the above
Surprise! All of the above is the correct answer.
David Nasaw’s engrossing biography is aptly subtitled, in true Horatio Alger style, The Remarkable Life and Turbulent Times of Joseph P. Kennedy. Kennedy not only lived in interesting times, but for a Catholic boy from the wrong side of Boston, he made himself at home on Wall Street, in Hollywood, Vatican Rome and of course Washington.
Nasaw, the biographer of another grandiose gentleman, William Randolph Hearst, has written a compulsively readable, fair-minded account of this controversial man.
April 24th, 2013
Buy now & you can be a part of next month's stats!
SINGLE FAMILY HOME SALES DAVIDSON COUNTY
In Davidson County, there were 667 home closings reported for the month of March. This figure represents a 26.8 % increase from the 526 closings reported for the same period last year.
There were 721 sales pending at the end of March, compared with 678 pending sales at this time last year.
SINGLE FAMILY HOME SALES WILLIAMSON COUNTY
In Williamson County, there were 337 home closings reported for the month of March. This figure represents a 39.2 % increase from the 242 closings reported for the same period last year.
There were 705 sales pending at the end of March, compared with 469 pending sales at this time last year.
CONDOMINIUM SALES DAVIDSON COUNTY
In Davidson County, there were 182 condo closings reported for the month of March. This figure represents a 28.1% increase from the 142 closings reported for the same period last year.
There were 194 condo sales pending at the end of March.