What Are We Reading and Reviewing in March?
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This is the place to let everyone know the books you are reading during february, and then to leave reviews of these books. You can put up a list of the books you are reading for the month or put a post about a book as you start it, or even both.
Don't worry we are not back at school a review can be something as simple as a sentence about the book or as comprehensive as you want to make it - whatever is good for you. This then allows people to discuss the book with you, and after all that is one of the main reasons we are all on here - to discuss books and our love of them.
Carol's March Reads
✔The Distant Echo by Val McDermid - 3/8/17 - 4 stars
✔Playing With Bones by Kate Ellis - 3/18/17 - 4 Stars
✔The Forbidden Tomb by Chris Kuzneski - CURRENT
Blind Date With A Book
✔A Falcon For A Queen by Catherine Gaskin - Treasure Trove - 3/17/17 - 4.5 Stars
✔All the Missing Girls by Megan Miranda - Mystery & Suspense Extra - 3/3/17 - 3.5 Stars
Sub Genre Challenge Mystery & Suspense Extra
✔Birthdays For the Dead by Stuart MacBride - 3/26/17 - 3 Stars
✔Ghost Girl by Torey Hayden - 3/22/17 - 3.5 Stars
March Mini Challenge Mystery & Suspense Extra
✔Historical mystery - The Smoke Hunter by Jacquelyne Benson -3/7/17 - 3 stars
✔Inspirational - The Secret of the Stones by Ernest Dempsey - 3/11/17 - 4.5 stars
✔Paranormal Romance - The Dirt on the Ninth Grave by Darynda Jones - 3/25/17 - 3 Stars
✔Mystery - Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough -3/23/17 - 4 Stars
✔Dance of the Bones by J.A. Jance - 3/1/17 - 2.5 Stars
✔Echoes in Death by J.D. Robb - 3/9/17 - 5 stars
✔Everything to Lose by Andrew Gross - 3/21/17 - 4.5 Stars
✔A Question of Identity by Susan Hill - 3/19/17 - 4 Stars
✔Buried in A Bog by Sheila Connolly - 3/10/17 - 3 Stars
✔The Widow's House by Carol Goodman - 3/13/17 - 4 Stars
✔Her Every Fear by Peter Swanson - 3/17/17 - 4.5 Stars
✔A Dream Across Time by Annie Rogers - 3/7/17 - 3.5 Stars
✔Safe & Sound by Danielle Singleton - 3/9/17 - 3.5 Stars
✔Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance (not Mystery but going to be here anyway:) - 3/11/17 - 3 Stars
✔Spilled Blood by Brian Freeman - 3/15/17 4 Stars
March 2017 Reads
✔★ ☊ ☞
✔39. ☊ A Caribbean Mystery by Agatha Christie - Island of St. Honore - 256 pg. - ★★★★ - 3/1/17
✔40. ☊ Heaven Is High by Kate Wilhelm - Belize - 304 pg. - ★★★★ - 3/2/17
✔41. ☊Midnight Rainbow by Linda Howard - 256 pg. - ★★★★ - 3/3/17
✔42. Curse of the Narrows by Laura M. MacDonald - Halifax, Nova Scotia - 356 pg. - ★★★★★ - 3/7/17
✔43. The Distant Echo by Val McDermid (#1 in the Karen Pirie Series) - 404 pg. - ★★★★.5 - 3/7/17
✔44. One Dangerous Lady by Jane Stanton Hitchcock - 400 pg. - ★★★★ - 3/8/17
✔45. Early Review - Here and Gone: A Novel by Haylen Beck - 304 pg. - ★★★★★ - 3/11/17
✔46. ☊ New Series Read - Jail Coach by Hillary Bell Locke - 250 pg. - ★★★★ - 3/12/17
✔47. Mystery Sub-Genre - Birthdays for the Dead by Stuart MacBride - 512 pg. - ★★★★★ - 3/14/17
✔48. ☊ These is my Words: The Diary of Sarah Agnes Prine, 1881-1901 by Nancy E. Turner - 416 pg - ★★★★★ - 3/16/2017
✔49. New Series Read - My Lady Judge by Cora Harrison - 311 pg. - ★★★★ - 3/18/2017
✔50. Playing with Bones by Kate Ellis: Start Wednesday 15th March (#2 Joe Plantagenet Series) 311 pg - ★★★★★ - 3/20/17
✔51. Last In Series The Rome Prophecy by Jon Trace - Historical Mystery - 465 pg. - ★★★★ - 3/22/2017
✔52. Audio - Hollow City by Ransom Riggs - 416 pg. ★★★★★ - 3/20/17
☞53. Last in the Series A Song for the Dying by Stuart MacBride - 516 pg.
☞54. The Forbidden Tomb by Chris Kuzneski: Start Friday 23rd March (#2 in the Hunters Series
55. Suspense Thriller- Say Nothing by Brad Parks - 440 pg. -
56. Historical Fiction - Golden Hill by Francis Spufford - - 344 pg.
57. Next In Series Read - More Bitter Than Death #5 by Dana Cameron - 318 pg.
58. Last In Series Read - Ashes and Bones #6 by Dana Cameron - 289 pg.
59. Next In Series Read - Looking Good Dead #2 by Peter James - 527 pg.
60. Next In Series Read - The Gilded Seal by James Twining - 401 pg.
61. Last In Series Read - The Geneva Deception by James Twining - 388 pg.
62. New Series Read - Touched by Carolyn Haines - 371 pg.
>3 EadieB: I love James Twining's work. I wonder whatever happened to him, he doesn't appear to be writing anymore. What a shame!
He said he has a wife and 3 children and has to keep a day job for now and will return to writing later in his life.
He's not missing - he's working and saving money to send his children to college!
Didn't you ever hear of starving actors? Well he was a starving author or maybe his kids were starving! lol
Andrew Gross, an author, wrote on his facebook page that he had problems with his hand shaking. He was at a restaurant and a Chinese guy sitting at a table next to him gabbed his hand and closed his eyes and said he was healed and his hand is not shaking anymore. Since we are reading the book with supernatural elements, I thought that was interesting. I wouldn't mind holding his hand, he's handsome!
➡ ✔ ★ ♥
📚 Library books
🐾 Graphic Novels
☊ Audio books
Playing with Bones by Kate Ellis - March 15
I'll skip The Distant Echo (read year's ago) and The Forbidden Tomb
Mystery & Suspense
✔ 📚 This is our Story by Ashley Elston - 5 stars
✔ ☊ 📚 The Overlook by Michael Connelly - 4 stars
✔ Defending Jacob by William Landay - 5 stars
✔ Juba Good by Vicki Delany - 3.6 stars
✔ Haitian Graves by Vicki Delany - 3.6 stars
✔ ☊ 📚 Fool Me Once by Harlan Coben - 3.6 stars
✔ ☊ 📚 Schneewittchen muss sterben by Nele Neuhaus - 3.6 stars
➡ ☊ 📚 Tiefe Wunden by Nele Neuhaus
➡ In the Woods by Tana French
📚 Havanna Red by Leonardo Padura
The Prince of Mist by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
Christine Falls by Benjamin Black
I Hear the Sirens in the Streets by Adrian McKinty
Haunted Ground by Erin Hart
✔ The Giver by Lois Lowry - 3.6 stars
✔ Freedom is Space for the Spirit by Glen Hirschberg - 3.6 stars
✔ 🐾 Northlanders 5: Metal by Brian Wood - 4 stars
➡ ☊ Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter Miller Jr.
Finalised list of Group Reads for March:
1. The Distant Echo by Val Mc Dermid : Start Friday 3rd March (#1 in the Karen Pirie Series)
2. Playing with Bones by Kate Ellis : Start Wednesday 15th March (#2 in the Joe Plantagenet Series)
3. The Forbidden Tomb by Chris Kuzneski : Start Friday 23rd March (#2 in the Hunters Series)
We will read The Excutioner by Chris Carter in April. I notice the only copy should have been returned to our library on 23rd February but hasn't been. I am second in the queue.
Apologies for any confusion called. :)
Provisional Reading List for March
Mystery and Suspense Group Reads
1. The Distant Echo by Val Mc Dermid : Start Friday 3rd March (#1 in the Karen Pirie Series)
2. Playing with Bones by Kate Ellis : Start Wednesday 15th March (#2 in the Joe Plantagenet Series)
3. The Forbidden Tomb by Chris Kuzneski : Start Friday 23rd March (#2 in the Hunters)
The Widow by Fiona Barton
Death of a Travelling Man by M C Beaton
The Double Comfort Safari Club by Alexander McCall Smith (Botswana)
Agatha Raisin and the Day the Floods Came by M C Beaton
The Paper Moon by Andrea Camilleri (Italy)
Pardonable Lies by Jacqueline Winspear
The Mayan Codex by Mario Reading (Mexico)
Private Games by James Patterson and Mark Sullivan
The Death Collectors by Jack Kerley (US)
The Atlantis Stone by Alex Lukeman (Egypt)
Separation of Power by Vince Flynn (Bahamas)
Final Book in a Series
Signal for Vengeance by Edward Marston
The Cup by Alex Lukeman (Syria)
The Lake House by Kate Morton
The Martian by Andy Weir
March Reading List
Mystery and Suspense
Black and Blue - Emma Jameson
The Chosen - Kristina Ohlsson
Cold Blooded Business - Dana Stabenow
Cold Cold Ground - Adrian McKinty
Distant Echo - Val McDermid
Divided City - Luke McCallin
Every Dead Thing - John Connolly
Fade Away - Harlan Coben
Forbidden Tomb - Chris Kuzneski
Investigation - J. M. Lee
Last Child - John Hart
Murder in Morningside Heights - Victoria Thompson
Pale Criminal - Phillip Kerr
Playing With Bones - Kate Ellis
Purity in Death - J. D. Robb
Other Than Mystery and Suspense
Haunted Ground - Erin Hart
Radio Girls - Sarah Jane Stratford
Room - Emma Donoghue
A Second Chance - Jodi Taylor
Still Alice - Lisa Genova
Till We Have Faces - C. S. Lewis
Dance of the Bones by J.A. Jance
J.P. Beaumont series Book #22 (not really)
From The Book:
Years ago, Amos Warren, a prospector, was gunned down out in the desert and Sheriff Brandon Walker made the arrest in the case. Now, the retired Walker is called in when the alleged killer, John Lassiter, refuses to accept a plea deal that would release him from prison with time served. Lassiter wants Brandon and The Last Chance to find Amos's "real" killer and clear his name.
Sixteen hundred miles to the north in Seattle, J.P. Beaumont is at loose ends after the Special Homicide Investigation Team, affectionately known as S.H.I.T., has been unexpectedly and completely disbanded. When Brandon discovers that there are links between Lassiter’s case and an unsolved case in Seattle, he comes to Beau for help.
Those two cases suddenly become hot when two young boys from the reservation, one of them with close ties to the Walker family, go missing. Can two seasoned cops, working together, decipher the missing pieces in time to keep them alive?
The J.P. Beaumont series was and remains one of my favorite series of all times...so when I saw this "new" series with a new set of characters was coming aboard but J.P was still a part of it...I said "why not?". Turns out there was several reasons "why not".
1. The book was half way over before J.P Beaumont even made an appearance. I gave the book 2.5 stars because it was only AFTER he made his appearance that the story even seemed that it had been written by the same author.
2. The new characters are all just flat. Brandon Walker could evolve into a good character if he just had an original thought in his head and would stop listening to the dopey woman.
3. The story skipped back and forth over several decades and when you threw in the Indian lore that pops up suddenly out of left field it was nearly impossible to keep the story line in any perspective.
Needless to say there won't be a book 2 for this reader.
A Caribbean Mystery by Agatha Christie - Island of St. Honore - ★★★★
Miss Marple is in the Caribbean for a rest paid for by her nephew, Raymond West. Her respite is suddenly interrupted by the death of Major Palgrave, one of her fellow guests at the hotel. Convinced that the major's death was not at all natural, she begins to ask difficult questions which leads to her solving this whodunit. I always find her stories having clever plots with interesting characters and this one was no different. I especially loved this book because of the setting of the West Indies' fictitious Island of St. Honore. It is a pleasant change of scenery for the traditional Miss Marple small English village story. Kept me guessing until the very end. I look forward to reading another one of her classic mysteries in the near future. I highly recommend her books to those who love light mystery reads.
My Modest March Reading List
Three Day Town by Margaret Maron
The Beautiful Mystery by Louise Penny
Helpless by Daniel Palmer
The Devil Colony by James Rollins
Still not sure if I'm playing by the rules, but this is my reading plan for March
>23 ColinMichaelFelix: - I love James Rollins and hope to read the Sigma Force series soon.
>24 Olivermagnus: My first book by him Amazonia still resonates with me. Much as I like the Sigma Force series, I actually prefer when he goes off script like Altar of Eden for example.
This is the Schedule for the Group Read of The Distant Echo which starts tomorrow. This is book 1 in the Karen Pirie Series.
Friday 3rd March : Prologue and 1 to 6
Saturday 4th March : 7 to 14
Sunday 5th March : 15 to 23
Monday 6th March : 24 to 30
Tuesday 7th March : 31 to 38
Wednesday 8th March : 39 to 46
>30 EadieB: He is definitely one of my favorite authors for quite some time.
Heaven Is High by Kate Wilhelm - 4 stars
I read this book for an Around the World challenge. In this book, Barbara Holloway is helping a woman named Binnie because Immigration is seeking to deport her back to Haiti, which would be a death sentence for her. Binnie's mother was from Belize but settled in Haiti. Binnie, who is mute, met her husband when she snuck aboard his boat while it was docked in Haiti and smuggled herself into the U. S. With only days to find the truth and protect Binnie, Holloway sets off for Belize. Binnie’s only hope is to prove her and her mother’s real identity.
I found this book to be interesting and intriguing and also a different adventure for Barbara Holloway. I enjoyed learning about Belize which is on the east coast of Central America and is bordered on the north by Mexico, on the south and west by Guatemala and to the east by the Caribbean Sea.
The book was well-written and I found the howler monkeys to be quite entertaining. I was happy to see that everything worked out well for Binnie in regards to her immigration and the book had a very happy ending. I look forward to reading more of the Barbara Holloway novels and I would recommend this book to anyone looking to visit Belize.
Blink by K.L. Slater
Blurb from Book Description: What if the person you love most in the world was in terrible danger … because of you?
Blink is K.L. Slater’s second psychological thriller and boy is it a good one! This story hooked me right from the beginning. This is one of those books that keeps the reader guessing throughout the story. Just when you think you have it all figured out, the author throws a twist and a turn and you are back to square one again.
The book is told from several points of view including Toni, Evie’s mother, Evie, and Evie’s teacher, Harriet Watson.
The story is mainly told through the eyes of Toni, the mother of little five year old Evie who disappears after school one day. Toni is a recent widow and is struggling to keep both her life and Evie’s together after her husband suddenly and tragically dies. Instead of turning to counseling and therapy to help her through the grieving process she turns to sedatives that had belonged to her husband. She tries to keep her addiction a secret but it begins to spiral out of control. That’s when Evie disappears. I felt bad for Toni, she just needed some help but instead she made one bad decision after another which eventually led to tragedy.
Another point of view the story is told in is that of Evie, the 5 year old who disappears. Evie tries to figure out what is wrong with her mommy and why sometimes she sleeps and can’t be woken up. She also misses her daddy and struggles with starting to attend a new school. The author did a good job telling this through the eyes and thought processes of a 5 year old.
The last point of view is that of the teacher, Harriet Watson. Harriet is a strange duck and pretty cruel and manipulative with those weaker than herself. Ms. Watson is not an easy character to like.
The story takes place in Nottinghamshire. It transitions from present day to three years ago when the disappearance of Evie occurred. The author did a wonderful job holding my interest throughout the book. I felt an impending sense of dread…you knew something was coming it was just a matter of when. This was well worth reading and I would highly recommend this book to everyone who likes a good “keep-you-guessing” psychological thriller.
All The Missing Girls by Megan Miranda
From The Book:
Megan Miranda’s novel is a nail-biting, breathtaking story about the disappearances of two young women—a decade apart—told in reverse.
It’s been ten years since Nicolette Farrell left her rural hometown after her best friend, Corinne, disappeared from Cooley Ridge without a trace. Back again to tie up loose ends and care for her ailing father, Nic is soon plunged into a shocking drama that reawakens Corinne’s case and breaks open old wounds long since stitched.
The decade-old investigation focused on Nic, her brother Daniel, boyfriend Tyler, and Corinne’s boyfriend Jackson. Since then, only Nic has left Cooley Ridge. Daniel and his wife, Laura, are expecting a baby; Jackson works at the town bar; and Tyler is dating Annaleise Carter, Nic’s younger neighbor and the group’s alibi the night Corinne disappeared. Then, within days of Nic’s return, Annaleise goes missing.
Told backwards—Day 15 to Day 1—from the time Annaleise goes missing, Nic works to unravel the truth about her younger neighbor’s disappearance, revealing shocking truths about her friends, her family, and what really happened to Corinne that night ten years ago.
Like nothing you’ve ever read before, All the Missing Girls delivers in all the right ways. With twists and turns that lead down dark alleys and dead ends, you may think you’re walking a familiar path, but then Megan Miranda turns it all upside down and inside out and leaves us wondering just how far we would be willing to go to protect those we love.
It was a really good story but had parts that just had nothing to actually do with the events taking place. I had to pay very close attention due to the format; with the story going backwards, I had to stop several times and get reoriented as to how all the facts fit together. As the days reverse, the disappearance of the second girl, Annaleise Carter, is investigated and explained. The ending was unpredictable, and not obvious. There were several ways that I had hoped it would end and several of the characters I didn't want to be guilty...but overall...it was the way it just had to end.
>23 ColinMichaelFelix: All the discussion about James Rollins made me check into him. I found the Bone Labyrinth at my library so I put it on my Tbr list. It's Sigma Force.
Louise Penny is one of my favorites and I have read several of her books. I plan to read more.
Midnight Rainbow by Linda Howard - 4 stars
I listened to this audio book for a visit to Costa Rica for an Around the World challenge. Romantic suspense is not my comfort zone genre but I did find the story interesting with lots of adventure. I liked the characters of Grant Sullivan and Jane Greer and the imagery of the jungle was excellent. Grant Sullivan is a deep cover agent with the government. He comes out of retirement to rescue Jane Greer who is a society girl involved in helping a US undercover agent in Costa Rica. Jane has been kidnapped and her time is running out. There are a lot of scenes of trials, tribulation and, of course, romance. This book is a reissue of a past publication from 1986 so a few things are outdated but does not really take away from the story. I would highly recommend this book to those who love romantic suspense with lots of adventure scenes.
Defending Jacob by William Landay - 5 stars
What starts out as a routine case for DA Andy Barber ends up changing his life completely when the investigation turns on his son. The book is not so much about the crime itself, but rather about the impact the trial has on Andy Barber and his family.
>41 Carol420: No. That came as a shock, though in hindsight it makes sense.
This Is Our Story by Ashley Easton - 5 stars
Five boys go into the woods, only four come back alive. One of them shot Grant, and all say they saw nothing. The tale starts slow, the tension rising, building up to a breathless finale. Where at first the narrator is a rather distant observer, she ends up being at the center of events.
>40 sushicat: I read Defending Jacob a few months back and I thought it was the best book I'd read in quite a while. It kept me switching back and forth throughout the book between thinking Jacob was guilty and then not, and also thinking Andy, the father, was doing the right things and then not. I was also shocked at the ending.
Homicide in the House by Colleen J. Shogan - 3 stars
Excerpted from Amazon:
Kit Marshall is working for a freshman congresswoman, Maeve Dixon, a young Gulf War veteran representing North Carolina. A government shutdown has just been announced, wreaking havoc on the Hill. Early one morning Representative Dixon is caught standing over the corpse of Jack Drysdale, the Speaker of the House's top staffer, a man she argued with in front of the press the day before. To save her job, Kit must clear her boss's name, and quickly.
I thought this was a fun read with a bit of an inside look at a staffer's life working on Capitol Hill. There were likable characters, humor and a bit of suspense. I also enjoyed the Washington D.C. location having lived all my life in the DC metropolitan area and having parents that worked on Capitol Hill in their younger days. Although, not always believable, I enjoyed following Kit to see what ideas she came up with to figure out who did it.
I got This is our Story as my Blind Date with a Book last month and really liked it. Glad those of you that have read it enjoyed it as much as I did and Lynda, you have a real treat in store. Enjoy.
The Drowning Tree by Carol Goodman - 3 stars
Excerpted from Amazon:
Juno McKay is thrilled when her best friend Christine returns to their upstate New York college to give a lecture about the stained-glass window Juno will be restoring. Christine theorizes that Augustus Penrose, the college's founder, depicted his sister-in-law, Clare, not his wife, Eugenie, in the window. A week later, Juno and her daughter kayak on the Hudson River to the Penrose estate where they discover a body: Christine. Juno tries to find out what could have driven her over the edge. The search leads Juno in unexpected directions, one of which involves her ex-husband, Neil, who has been a patient in the local asylum for 14 years.
This was an interesting story written in an appealing poetic-like style that covered aspects of academia, mental illness and art. Many references to Greek mythology contributed to the style but at times bogged down the story. Besides the investigation into Christine’s death, there was also the mystery of Clare and why she was sent to the local mental institution so young, which Christine was researching. Parts of the ending were not really believable but overall I enjoyed the story.
The Smoke Hunter by Jacquelyn Benson
From The Book:
Frustrated suffragette and would-be archaeologist Ellie Mallory stumbles across a map to a city that shouldn't exist, a jungle metropolis alive and flourishing centuries after the Mayan civilization mysteriously collapsed. Discovering it would make her career, but Ellie isn't the only one after the prize. A disgraced professor and his ruthless handler are hot on her heels, willing to go any extreme to acquire the map for themselves.
To race them through the uncharted jungle, Ellie needs a guide. The only one with the expertise is maverick surveyor Adam Bates. But with his determination to nose his way into Ellie's many secrets, Bates is a dangerous partner.
As Ellie gets closer to her goal, she realizes it's not just her ambitions at stake. A powerful secret lies hidden in the heart of the city - and if it falls into the wrong hands, it could shake the very fate of the world.
Historical novels are not really what I would normally pursue as those that know me well can verify but this one wasn't bad. There was lots of action, a touch of romance, and a wonderful setting in Belize, a very interesting and colorful country. This is Jacquelyn Benson's first novel and I will have to say that it showed a lot of promise. Her heroine was well ahead of her times as she didn't take any crap off of anyone and was very capable of standing up for herself and for 1898 that says a lot in itself. Who knows? I just might try book #2.
Curse of the Narrows by Laura M. MacDonald - 5 stars
Before Hiroshima, there was Halifax. In 1917 the busy Canadian port was crowded with ships leaving for war-torn Europe. On December 6, two of them, the Mont Blanc and the Imo, collided in the hard-to-navigate Narrows of the harbor. Within minutes, the Mont Blanc, ablaze, grounded against the city's docks. The explosion that followed would devastate the city and shock the world.
Set against the background of World War I, Curse of the Narrows is the first major account of the world's largest pre-atomic explosion that set in motion a remarkable relief effort originating from Boston.
I found this book to be a detailed account of this true historical event. In the first part of the book we learn exactly how the accident occurred and the devastation that happened in the cities of Halifax and Dartmouth. Within 12 hours of the explosion, a relief train from Boston, Massachusetts with hundreds of volunteers and supplies was bound for Halifax. We learn of the remarkable courage of the people as they searched for survivors and move the dead to a make-shift morgue. On top of everything that happened that day, a major snowstorm arrives and slows down the relief effort as the train from Boston gets caught in major drifts from the storm. The rest of the book deals with the hospitals that were set up by doctors and nurses to handle the victims hurt by the blast, the burials of the dead and the trial of the ships' captains. In the end, we find out how Halifax was rebuild and the memorial service held yearly to commemorate the disaster. Each December the people of Boston also gather to witness the annual lighting of the Christmas tree. Some of them probably do not know that it is a gift from Nova Scotia and the people of Halifax for all their support and help the day of the explosion and many years afterward. I highly recommend this book to those who are interested in historical disasters. I found the book very well written and hard to put down.
I found another book about a disaster that I want to read. I have heard of this disaster but it still looks interesting:
Flight of Dreams by Ariel Lawhon
On the evening of May 3rd, 1937, ninety-seven people board the Hindenburg for its final, doomed flight to Lakehurst, New Jersey. Among them are a frightened stewardess who is not what she seems; the steadfast navigator determined to win her heart; a naive cabin boy eager to earn a permanent spot on the world’s largest airship; an impetuous journalist who has been blacklisted in her native Germany; and an enigmatic American businessman with a score to settle. Over the course of three hazy, champagne-soaked days their lies, fears, agendas, and hopes for the future are revealed.
Flight of Dreams is a fiercely intimate portrait of the real people on board the last flight of the Hindenburg. Behind them is the gathering storm in Europe and before them is looming disaster. But for the moment they float over the Atlantic, unaware of the inexorable, tragic fate that awaits them.
Brilliantly exploring one of the most enduring mysteries of the twentieth century, Flight of Dreams is that rare novel with spellbinding plotting that keeps you guessing till the last page and breathtaking emotional intensity that stays with you long after.
>55 EadieB: - I read this last year and thought it was okay, giving it a 3, I believe. My problem was high expectations based on a friend's recommendation. Definitely give it a try....I love to read about that period of history.
The Distant Echo by Val McDermid
Karen Pirie series Book #1
From The Book:
It was a winter morning in 1978, that the body of a young barmaid was discovered in the snow banks of a Scottish cemetery. The only suspects in her brutal murder were the four young men who found her: Alex Gilbey and his three best friends. With no evidence but her blood
on their hands, no one was ever charged.
Twenty five years later, the Cold Case file on Rosie Duff has been reopened. For Alex and his friends, the investigation has also opened old wounds, haunting memories-and new fears. For a stranger has emerged from the shadows with his own ideas about justice. And revenge.
When two of Alex's friends die under suspicious circumstances, Alex knows that he and his innocent family are the next targets. And there's only way to save them: return to the cold-blooded past and uncover the startling truth about the murder. For there lies the identity of an avenging killer.
I was supposed to be the first book in the Karen Pirie series but actually Karen had very little to do with the entire book. She never even made a showing until the second half of the book and then she was a ghostly part of the story. That aside...the book was a fairly good read. Not as good as McDermid's Tony Hill/Carol Jordan books but still very readable. I think if you hadn't been looking for Karen to make an appearance the story would have had much more appeal. The writing is very good...the story is plausible... and the main characters are well developed and realistic. You can't help wondering what anyone would do if they suddenly were thrown into a similar situation. It all comes together in the end, no strings left untied. I can recommend this book to anyone that loves a well told mystery...just don't think of it as a series.
The Distant Echo by Val McDermid - 4.5 stars
In 1978, four young university students are suspects in the murder of nineteen year old Rosie Duff. With no real evidence against them or anyone else, suspicion would follow them and change their lives forever. Twenty-five years later, the case would be re-opened as a cold case. This time, however, they would begin dying under suspicious circumstances. Clearly someone has decided them guilty of Rosie's murder and is exacting retribution.
I thought this book was very well written and easy to read. It held my interest until the very ending which was quite a surprise and very exciting. I loved all the characters and thought they were well-drawn and the plot was very unique. It wasn't too hard to guess the killer but I think the real purpose of Val McDermid writing the book was to show "the poisonous nature of suspicion and guilt and the reverberation of damage through the lives of people touched by murder."
I don't think you can really consider this book as book 1 of the Karen Pirie series as it was written 5 years before the 2nd book and was probably intended to be a standalone. Karen Pirie was not in the book until the middle and the ending. The series therefore seems to me as an afterthought. I will, however, be reading the rest of the Karen Pirie series and I highly recommend this book to those who like mysteries with surprise endings.
One Dangerous Lady by Jane Stanton Hitchcock - 4 stars
I listened to this audio for an Around the World challenge for the location of Barbados. It was a great look at the rich and powerful people in New York society and how they act. It was well-written and suspense-filled with plot twists and turns and a surprise ending. I found many of the characters quite humorous which made the book very entertaining. It has all the elements of a great summer beach read: murder, mystery, scandal and intrigue. I highly recommend this book to those who love light mystery with lots of humor.
A Dream Across Time by Annie Rogers
From The Book:
When Jamie Elliott arrives from New York onto the lush Caribbean island of St. Lucia, she is swept up in island forces, powerful across the centuries, which find deep echoes in her recurring dreams. As her dreams intensify on St. Lucia, Jamie must grapple with a cheating husband and her own attraction to Andre Demontagne, son of a powerful island family. Asserting her independence, she comes to terms with loss and love as she discovers who she is against swirling psychic forces and long guarded secrets.
This book has the perfect union of romance and mystery...of setting and story. It will make you wonder about mystical possibilities of reincarnation and generational collective memory and will take you on a journey that you will not soon forget. I am not ordinarily a reader of "romantic mysteries" however...I do love mysteries and absolutely can't resist the paranormal. It's a great read about real people in an unreal world.
Safe & Sound by Danielle Singleton
From The Book:
Safe & Sound is the story of Amy Millhouse, a recent college graduate who travels to Mexico on vacation with her friends. While there, the girls are kidnapped by a violent drug gang and held hostage for everything they are worth - and more. Safe & Sound is a fast-paced kidnapping thriller that leaves readers on the edge of their seat and begging for more!
I picked this book up because it met the criteria for a reading challenge...haven't we all done that? It's a roll of the dice if we'll read it in one sitting or go screaming from the room. This first novel attempt by Danielle Singleton fell in the later category. The story was compelling even if it did deal with a brutal subject matter. Danielle manages to engage the reader in a manner that doesn't focus on the brutality as much as it does a connection to Amy and her strength throughout the terrible ordeal. It's not for the faint of heart but if you can get past this and go with the many twists and turns...you will enjoy this book.
>37 gaylebutz: If you like Louise Penny might I suggest Anne Perry's William Monk series. Different times but, I find similar in tone. When you get done with your James Rollins, Preston & Child is alson worth a look
>63 ColinMichaelFelix: Excellent recommendations:) I love the characters in Louise Penny's books as well as the Preston & Childs books.
>63 ColinMichaelFelix: I have read 1 or 2 of Anne Perry's but not the William Monk series. I do think she writes well and will take a look at that series. Odd thing about Anne Perry, when she and her best friend were teenagers, they killed the best friend's mother - bludgeoned her to death. This is true but quite shocking when I first heard about it. They both went to a juvenile jail until they were adults and then were released. I can't help but think about that when I read her books where people are murdered.
I have also read several of Preston & Child and enjoy them. I do plan to read more of theirs.
Thanks for the suggestions!
>65 gaylebutz: Interestingly the Anne Perry real life story was made into a movie directed by Peter Jackson called Heavenly Creatures
Echoes in Death by J.D. Robb
Eve Dallas - In Death series Book #44
From The Book:
As NY Lt. Eve Dallas and her billionaire husband Roarke are driving home, a young woman―dazed, naked, and bloody―suddenly stumbles out in front of their car. Roarke slams on the brakes and Eve springs into action.
Daphne Strazza is rushed to the ER, but it’s too late for her husband Dr. Anthony Strazza. A brilliant orthopedic surgeon, he now lies dead amid the wreckage of his obsessively organized town house, his three safes opened and emptied. Daphne would be a valuable witness, but in her terror and shock the only description of the perp she can offer is repeatedly calling him “the devil”...
While it emerges that Dr. Strazza was cold, controlling, and widely disliked, this is one case where the evidence doesn’t point to the spouse. So Eve and her team must get started on the legwork, interviewing everyone from dinner-party guests to professional colleagues to caterers, in a desperate race to answer some crucial questions... What does the devil look like? And where will he show up next?
44 books in this series and J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) still manages to make the series inventive, entertaining and clever. I have been a huge fan of this series for years and there is a comforting feeling about the near future New York City and the characters that inhabit it. We have watched Eve grow and evolve from a battered child to a take charge and ask no forgiveness Lieutenant with the NYPSD along with Peabody and the rest of the crew.
This is one of the darker mysteries of the series with a generous dose of intrigue and suspense. It wasn't very easy to guess the killer and that was a good touch for those of us that enjoy our own chase but not so frustrating to those that want to know the identity sooner.
It was a heart racing journey and we all know that Eve always gets her man...or woman. Looking forward to book #45.
Buried in a Bog by Sheila Connolly
County Cork Mystery series Book #1
From The Book:
Honoring the wish of her late grandmother, Maura Donovan visits the small Irish village where her Gran was born—though she never expected to get bogged down in a murder mystery. Nor had she planned to take a job in one of the local pubs, but she finds herself excited to get to know the people who knew her Gran.
In the pub, she’s swamped with drink orders as everyone in town gathers to talk about the recent discovery of a nearly one-hundred-year-old body in a nearby bog. When Maura realizes she may know something about the dead man—and that the body’s connected to another, more recent, death—she fears she’s about to become mired in a homicide investigation. After she discovers the death is connected to another from almost a century earlier, Maura has a sinking feeling she may really be getting in over her head.
Stories of and from Ireland have a special place in my heart as that is where my grandmother came from and where my mother was born. This is a well written... easy to read story with a character in Maura that is strong and able to stand up for herself. The biggest part of the story is Maura's introduction to her grandmother's origins. The body found in the bog gave the armchair detective something to ponder but it was really fairly simple to solve. The history of the bogs and the descriptions of the countryside helped to paint a visual of this beautiful country for the reader. It's the story of a young woman's journey from a large American city to a place where time has all but stopped. For the cozy mystery enthusiast it will be a more than satisfying read...for the hard core mystery lover it will just be a delightful rest from the Blood and mayhem that we normally read. Glad I read it, but being one of the blood and mayhem bunch I probably won't be in any hurry to go on to the next one.
Fade Away by Harlan Coben - 4.5 Stars
Fade Away is the third book in the Myron Bolitar series. Myron is a sports agent and former FBI agent, but ten years ago was a a top NBA draft choice until an serious injury sidelined him in his first preseason game. Myron's former rival, Greg Downing, is now a superstar for the New Jersey Dragons. He's also missing and the owner of the team wants Myron to find him. To do that he gives Myron a place as a substitute on the team. When the trail leads to the bludgeoned corpse of a woman last seen with Greg, Myron, and his best friend and partner, Win, find themselves in real trouble. Win has a penchant for violence and he certainly puts it to use in their investigation.
I enjoyed the plot twists involving Myron’s history and the way he has coped with his disappointment over the years. The writing is suspenseful, at at the same time, laugh out loud funny. The characters are all multi-dimensional, and the secondary characters of Win and Esperanza, are some of the best I've ever seen. Harlan Coben is a master of great storytelling and suspense. Myron is a fascinating character and I look forward to continuing the rest of this highly addictive series.
I See You by Clare Macintosh - 4.5 Stars
When we first meet Zoe Walker she's describing her commute to work. She sees the same people every day, and they all have the same vacant look on their faces as they journey on London's Underground. While reading the paper on her way to work, Zoe sees her picture in an ad for a website called Find the One .com. At first she's not sure it's her, but then becomes convinced that someone has taken a picture of her and placed it in the ad. She takes the paper home to her boyfriend, Simon, and her two teenage children. They think the picture is of someone that looks like Zoe, and that she's being paranoid.
Zoe becomes obsessed and when she reads about a woman who was raped and murdered on her commute home, she finds her picture in one of the prior ads. She contacts the police and meets Kelly Swift, a member of the Neighborhood Police Team. Kelly has issues of her own but is determined to find out what's going on.
This was one of the best audio books I've ever listened to. The narrator, Rachel Atkins, used just the right blend of fear and paranoia to make Zoe fascinating. You don't know whether she's really in trouble or just plain crazy. The story is unnerving and the characters are very well developed. The ending was very creative. I've never read anything by this author before. I understand her first book, I Let You Go, is even better than this one. I'm going to get a copy as soon as I can.
The Fundamentals of Murder
Synopsis Auxiliary Bishop Francis X. Regan, a frustrated crime-solving paraplegic with an IQ of 220, and his special assistant Davey Goldman, a New York City cop-turned-private-eye, once more find themselves embroiled in a high-stakes case of murder and embezzlement.
The book description sounded very intriguing to me and I wanted to like this book but I could never really get into it.
The story is told through the eyes of Davey Goldman, a private investigator and ex-homicide detective with NYPD. Davey also works part-time as a special assistant to a Catholic Bishop named Francis Regan. Bishop Regan is a very intelligent man who happens to be paraplegic due to a gunshot wound he suffered six years ago. Bishop Regan gets pretty cranky and Davey is witty and sarcastic which leads to a strange and rocky relationship. Despite their bickering and bantering they use the Bishop’s brains and the David’s investigative street-smarts to solve crimes together.
One day a man named Jerry Fanning shows up and asks to see Bishop Regan. He says he had a vision of Jesus telling him to go tell Bishop Regan about Him. Jerry had only arrived in New York a few weeks before from Oklahoma. Before leaving, Bishop and Jerry pray together and Bishop Regan tells Jerry to let him know if he ever needs anything.
Jerry Fanning ends up taking the Bishop up on the offer not long after when he is suspected of being the serial killer the media has dubbed “Strangler John”. The evidence against Jerry is circumstantial and after meeting with Jerry in jail, the Bishop is convinced of his innocence and agrees to help him.
The Fundamentals of Murder was not a bad story but it wasn’t a great story either in my opinion. I liked how the author used wit, humor, and sarcasm throughout the story. I found myself laughing out loud at times. The overall story just did not keep my attention so I give this one a 3 out of 5 stars.
Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance
From The Book:
From a former marine and Yale Law School graduate, a powerful account of growing up in a poor Rust Belt town that offers a broader, probing look at the struggles of America’s white working class
Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of white working-class Americans. The decline of this group, a demographic of our country that has been slowly disintegrating over forty years, has been reported on with growing frequency and alarm, but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside. J. D. Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional, and class decline feels like when you were born with it hung around your neck.
"The Vance family story begins hopefully in postwar America. J. D.’s grandparents were “dirt poor and in love,” and moved north from Kentucky’s Appalachia region to Ohio in the hopes of escaping the dreadful poverty around them. They raised a middle-class family, and eventually their grandchild (the author) would graduate from Yale Law School, a conventional marker of their success in achieving generational upward mobility."
While the book and the author focus on his own background...a dirt poor...Scot-Irish... section of coal country in Kentucky..anyone at all that is familiar with poverty in America will recognize... and to some extent sympathize... with J.D. Vance's attempt to tell his family's story.
It's so easy to lump classes of people together and tag them with the same stamp...but if there has been any attempt to get to know them as individuals we would soon see that while they share some common denominators...they are each different in their own ways. I know this was the authors attempt when he started the story but somewhere along the way he seemed to threw the family that he obviously loved with all their many faults...into the same giant melting pot. I do have to give the author credit that at the end of his story he expressed his growing realization, that while individuals do not have total control over the shapes of their lives, their choices do in fact matter...that one does always have input into the life that comes from being free to make choices... every day... and in every situation.
Here and Gone by Haylen Beck - 5 stars
I was sent an ARC of this book for an honest review. This book is a parent's worst nightmare. Audra lives in New York and has packed her children in the car and is leaving her abusive husband. While driving to California, she is stopped by the sheriff in the Arizona desert and is taken into custody for having an illegal substance (which was planted by the sheriff). He tells a woman officer to take care of her two children and take them some place safe. When Audra later asks about her children, the reply is "What children?" I could feel my blood run cold and I could imagine how Audra felt. I found this book to be a very riveting, edge of your seat thriller with very believable characters. The plot was intense and caused the book to be hard to put down. It is very well written with twists that keep you emotionally involved. The ending had an exciting conclusion and all the loose ends were tied up neatly. I highly recommend this book to those who love action-packed thrillers.
New Series Read - Jail Coach by Hillary Bell Locke - 250 pg. - ★★★★ - 3/12/17
Jay Davidovich is a veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan because he joined the National Guard in the late 'nineties so that the taxpayers could put him through college. Nine-eleven took him by surprise - "sort of like Bush," as Jay puts it. His job at Trans/Oxana is to prevent losses that Trans/Oxana has insured against - especially losses that unpleasant people want to happen. After Hollywood pretty boy George Trowbridge plays late-night bumper-car in his Ferrari, which bought an eight-figure Trans/Oxana policy insuring performance of Trowbridge's Major Performing Artist Contract. Jay quickly realizes that Trowbrigde is going to do some county time. Because there won't be any director yelling "CUT!" when things get dicey on the inside, Jay figures that Trowbridge won't be in shape to perform anything once he gets out unless Jay finds him a Jail Coach.Enter Katrina Thompson whose past includes jail, the Marines, a daughter, and a hustler named Stan Chaladian. The first will help Jay, the second will impress him, the third will charm him, and the fourth with almost kill him - that's life in the Loss Prevention business.
This book was a very funny action-packed thriller with very likable characters and lots of laugh-out-loud dialogue. The plot is fast-paced and very humorous. It is a fun read about the insurance industry and I'm looking forward to reading the 2nd book in the series. I highly recommend this book to those who like thrillers with great humor.
One Kick by Chelsea Cain - ★ ★ ★ ★ - 321 pages
Kick Lannigan knows several ways to kill a person. She is also haunted by her past. One of the most famous faces of child porn, she was rescued from her abductor/abuser when she was twelve. She is now embroiled in the cases of two other missing children. John Bishop, a former arms dealer, has forced her involvement - using what she knows about hiding children to help find them.
A good novel. There are some gaps - why didn't Bishop just talk with her? - but over the course of the series, I would expect these gaps filled in. Unfortunately, because Cain followed her editor to a new publisher, there won't be any more "Kick" novels - at least for a while.
The Widow's House by Carol Goodman
From the Book:
When Jess and Clare Martin move from Williamsburg, Brooklyn, to their former college town in the Hudson River valley, they are hoping for rejuvenation—of their marriage, their savings, and Jess's writing career.
They take a caretaker's job at Riven House, a crumbling estate and the home of their old college writing professor. While Clare once had dreams of being a writer, those plans fell by the wayside when Jess made a big, splashy literary debut in their twenties. It's been years, now, since his first novel. The advance has long been spent. Clare's hope is that the pastoral beauty and nostalgia of the Hudson Valley will offer some inspiration.
But their new life isn't all quaint town libraries and fragrant apple orchards. There is a haunting pall that hangs over Riven House like a funeral veil. Something is just not right. Soon, Clare begins to hear babies crying at night, see strange figures in fog at the edge of their property. Diving into the history of the area, she realizes that Riven House has a dark and anguished past. And whatever this thing is—this menacing force that destroys the inhabitants of the estate—it seems to be after Clare next.
It was not exactly the ghost story that I was expecting but overall not a disappointing read either. Enough specters appear to keep the ghost story enthusiasts happy. Surprises along the way gave the story a nice suspense building pace while at the same time providing a dark and edgy atmosphere. It was an easy read and I would recommend this book to anyone that loves a mystery mixed with a few goose bumps..
The Fire Engine that Disappeared by Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo
book 5 in the Martin Beck series
from my library's catalog: The incendiary device that blew the roof off a Stockholm apartment not only interrupted the small, peaceful orgy underway inside, it nearly took the lives of the building's eleven occupants. If one of Martin Beck's colleagues hadn't been on the scene, the explosion would have led to a major catastrophe because somehow a regulation fire-truck has vanished. Was it terrorism, suicide, or simply a gas leak?
my thoughts: This was my least favorite in the Martin Beck series so far. This storyline was more disjointed than usual. The mystery was all over the place and the ending did not match my expectations for this series. As a mystery/police procedural this story fell through for me. However, this story did develop a lot of the characters in the story. And, even though the series revolves around Martin Beck, he was more a peripheral character in this one. This story revolved around Gunvald Larsson, a character that I am learning to like a lot.
Group Read of Playing with Bones by Kate Ellis (#2 in the Joe Plantagenet Series).
Wednesday 15th March : Chapter 1 - 5
Thursday 16th March. : Chapter 6 - 13
Friday 17th March : Chapter 14 - 21
Saturday 18th March : Chapter 22 - 30
Birthdays for the Dead by Stuart MacBride - 5 stars
Birthdays for the Dead is a very dark and gritty book that keeps you on the edge-of-your-seat. It has all the ingredients you need for a thriller: murder, mystery, violence, good and bad guys, vengeance, justice and a surprise ending. Abduction of twelve year-old girls is a disturbing subject so the book does not have the humor of the Logan MacRae series. I did, however, enjoy the interaction between DC Ash Henderson and profiler, Alice McDonald. I found all the characters to be interesting and the unique plot kept me guessing all the way through. This chilling story will stay with you even after you finish the book. I now look forward to reading the second book of the series. I highly recommend this book to those who like mystery thrillers. Warning: not for the faint of heart.
It was very violent, bloody and gritty but the writing was a lot better than Logan MacRae series.
Hope you like it! Henderson is a wild and crazy guy but very determined!
>85 EadieB: MacBride wrote it so I'm sure I'll like it:) I'll be letting you know soon.
Spilled Blood by Brian Freeman
From the Book:
On a March night outside the river town of Barron, Minnesota, three teenage girls gather in a ghost town to play a terrifying game of Russian roulette.
By morning, one girl will be dead, and another in jail. Olivia Hawk claims she didn't pull the trigger on Ashlynn Steele, but no one believes her.
Olivia's best hope is her estranged father, an attorney from the city, who she barely knows anymore. And if he's going to prove Olivia's innocence, he's going to have to learn everything about her public--and private--life, however much she might like to keep hidden.
The story is build around the bitter, long standing dislike that two neighboring towns have for one another over a failed lawsuit. The feud has been taken up by teenagers in the two towns and has escalated into vandalism. Now someone has been murdered.
Spilled Blood is a mystery keeping you guessing until the end. The book was a welcomed and pleasant surprise….as the reviews for it were all over the board. I found the characters to be extremely well developed, making this a truly character driven story as well as a well written mystery. There are lots of red herrings thrown in and I wasn't completely sure who the "bad" guy was…and that’s what I really like to have happen in a book.
Her Every Fear by Peter Swanson
From The Book:
The danger isn’t all in your head . . .
Growing up, Kate Priddy was always a bit neurotic, experiencing momentary bouts of anxiety that exploded into full blown panic attacks after an ex-boyfriend kidnapped her and nearly ended her life. When Corbin Dell, a distant cousin in Boston, suggests the two temporarily swap apartments, Kate, an art student in London, agrees, hoping that time away in a new place will help her overcome the recent wreckage of her life.
But soon after her arrival at Corbin’s grand apartment on Beacon Hill, Kate makes a shocking discovery: his next-door neighbor, a young woman named Audrey Marshall, has been murdered. When the police question her about Corbin, a shaken Kate has few answers, and many questions of her own—curiosity that intensifies when she meets Alan Cherney, a handsome, quiet tenant who lives across the courtyard, in the apartment facing Audrey’s. Alan saw Corbin surreptitiously come and go from Audrey’s place, yet he’s denied knowing her. Then, Kate runs into a tearful man claiming to be the dead woman’s old boyfriend, who insists Corbin did the deed the night that he left for London.
When she reaches out to her cousin, he proclaims his innocence and calms her nerves . . . until she comes across disturbing objects hidden in the apartment—and accidentally learns that Corbin is not where he says he is. Could Corbin be a killer? And what about Alan? Kate finds herself drawn to this appealing man who seems so sincere, yet she isn’t sure. Jet lagged and emotionally unstable, her imagination full of dark images caused by the terror of her past, Kate can barely trust herself . . . So how could she take the chance on a stranger she’s just met? Yet the danger Kate imagines isn’t nearly as twisted and deadly as what’s about to happen. When her every fear becomes very real. And much, much closer than she thinks.
The story is told from multiple viewpoints. I usually hate this way of telling the story as the characters sometimes become difficult to keep straight. That was not the case with Her Every Fear. There was a parade of various characters throughout Kate's stay in Boston and they all were loudly and convincingly proclaiming their innocence but you knew one of them was lying as Kate's neighbor had been murdered only hours before Kate arrived from London. I went back and forth on which one it was but Peter Swanson had delivered the story so well that I never did sort it out.
I highly recommend this to anyone that loves a physiological mystery with lots of possible solutions.
A Falcon for a Queen by Catherine Gaskin
Summary From the Book:
Kirsty Howard has traveled a long way to find what is behind her brother, William’s death. Her brother had left China where they were raised to seek out their grandfather in Scotland hoping to establish a relationship with the not very outgoing or friendly old man that had had little to do with their side of the family. William’s death makes Kirsty determined that she must find out more. She has his letters, and a scroll he sent which contains strange Chinese symbols. She knows what the characters say: “she has killed” but they don’t make sense to her. Surprisingly the grandfather and William seemed to have gotten along very well but the old man sees no use for Kristy whatsoever. A woman can’t run the distillery and he has no heir to leave his estate to. Mairi Sinclair, the enigmatic housekeeper, can’t see much use for Kirsty either, and from the moment she first steps foot on the property, makes Kirsty feel very unwelcome.
Despite all the opposition she faces, Kirsty is determined to make a place for herself at Cluain. Angus is her only remaining relative, and Cluain is her destiny. Enlisting the help of Callum Sinclair, Mairi’s equally enigmatic son, she takes a tour of the whiskey brewery and begins learning all she can about the process. But why is she continually being blocked in her quest to find out what really happened to her brother?
A beautifully written book with rich imagery. I visited the Highlands of Scotland with my grandfather as a child many times when he returned to what he always considered his home. The words on these pages made me wish to hop a plane and return again to what I thought of as a "magical" land. This was my Blind Date With A Book but it is also a "snowy-day, grab a blanket and a cuppa tea and loose yourself in the story" kind of read.
Just heading off to Vatican City with Conclave by Robert Harris, one of my favourite authors. I hear the Pope has just died, and the battle lines are being drawn!
>91 EadieB: I remember you reading it. I don't think I've ever read a Robert Harris book I didn't enjoy.
I haven't found a copy yet but I will probably get it at the library. I have changed my philosophy about my books as I have run out of room to store them. I am getting rid of the ones that the library has copies of and I am swapping them for credits on paperbackswap and I can use the credits to get books that the library doesn't have. It takes me awhile sometimes to realize that I can't really read 7,000 books in a lifetime. I think I just like to be surrounded by books or that might just be an excuse. lol
>95 EadieB: 35 years to read the 7000 books if you can maintain 200 books a year. I think we do like to be surrounded by books, being in a library or bookshop is like a child being in a sweet shop - but it does give you a thrill when you find one you have been looking for.
I have also slowed down in the books we buy (usually from charity shops or church sales) and get most from the library too. Possibly own close to a 1000 books but usually pass books onto a charity shop once read unless it is a real favourite I might want to read again. Would like to sell them on but don't have the time at this stage in my life.
>95 EadieB: You have 7,000 books?!? In your house? Wow! I probably have about 700 - and they take up several bookshelves. Where do you keep them all?
I am more prone to filling my e-reader these days instead of my physical bookshelves. But I will buy a printed version if the e-book is not available - or if a used copy is less expensive than the digital version, (why e-books cost as much or more than physical books would make an interesting premise for a mystery novel - though it may be lacking in suspense. ;-).
With the creation of the Overdrive system, many library books that I borrow are also digital. So much more convenient than driving back & forth to the physical library, (although we do have a very nice library where I live).
I like the physical book better than the e-book so I very rarely read using my kindle. I do borrow audio books from the library and listen to them on my i-phone. I do about 2 or 3 audios a week. I have 2 daughters that are married so I lined their bedrooms with shelves but I now have some in boxes that do not fit on the shelves. I belong to 2 swap sites and also sell the books that are in new condition on Amazon. I'm going to sell or swap some books until I get where they are all on shelves. I also read about 250 every year and get rid of the ones I read.
Also forgot to say that I took all my china out of the china closet in the dining room and store my historical novels there and my china was moved to my kitchen which was remodeled and the china fits in the kitchen now.
I am currently reading my 50th book
Physical books - 28 (6 Library, 22 owned)
E-books - 1 (Author sent me a copy)
Audiobooks - 21 (20 library, 1 owned)
56% were physical books
The Sins of the Father by Jeffrey Archer
Tom Bradshaw, aka Harry Clifton, is arrested for first degree murder. When a top Manhattan lawyer offers his services for nothing, penniless Tom has little choice but to accept. Surprisingly, Tom is found guilty and the only way for him to prove his innocence would be to reveal his true identity - something that he has sworn never to do in order to protect the woman he loves. Meanwhile, the young woman in question travels to New York, leaving their son behind in England, having decided she'll do whatever it takes to find the man she was to marry - unwilling to believe that he died at sea.
This 2nd book in the series was light, entertaining and easy to read with many twists and surprises. As in the 1st book, there is a big cliffhanger at the end, which makes me want to read the next book.
I am so unworthy of this group. 50 books, so far, for the year. I'm not even into double digits. I want to learn at your collective feet.
>106 ColinMichaelFelix: Lol! I think when I started with the group I was only reading a fraction of what I do now - they are all a bad influence on me. 😂 But seriously we have a range of people who read different quantities of books and all are welcome. It is the discussion about books which is more important than the quantity of books read.
I've read 52 thus far and working on the 53. January was so slow for me with my mother but she's stepping right along now so I can get back to reading more. 20% of my yearly goal.
>108 Carol420: Well we're 21% through the year today so you are not far off and you will soon overtake that gap. I am currently reading my 51st, 52nd and 53rd!
I'm on track for 238 books but don't believe I will get to that total, never even broken 200 before.
Don't let us put pressure on you! We are crazy readers! Just go at your own pace and just have fun!
Well, how else do you explain it! I didn't want to tell Colin to watch out or he will catch it. Didn't want to scare him!
>112 EadieB: I actually want to catch this bug. I am just a bit in awe of the sheer volume you guys consume. Mind you, between my kindle and my physical library, I do have an ample collection and am usually reading at least 3 at a time. But you guys are my Idols, this is just the kind of group I was looking for.
You're so sweet to say such nice things about us! I'm sure your reading will increase if you hang out with us because it is catchy. You start adding so many books to your TBR pile that it just makes you a crazy reader. Imagine if someone made us read this many books. We would definitely think they were crazy and probably say, "That's impossible." But honestly, when I don't have a book in my hand, I feel kind of lost and can't wait to get home and grab my book. The book world is a great world to live and maybe we are escaping the real world. Or maybe we are the ones that are in the real world. What do you think about that?
>Lol. All I can say is the book world is my favorite world and my reading has already increased since meeting you guys so there
That is a good thing if that is what you were wishing for!
>116 ColinMichaelFelix: Taking part in a Group Read is a good way to read more as you know you have to read that section that day to keep up with the read (we usually split the book into 5 sections over 5 days, unless it is a long book when it can be over 6 or 7). Especially me, as I set the questions. I know I read more during the group reads than at other times. And the added bonus is that it increases enjoyment of the book.
We'll let you slide until the end of December then in January 2018, I'm sure you'll be turning the pages faster!
I second the motion that you join in on our group reads. Then your fun will surely begin to grow!
>120 EadieB: I think you're right and I, for one, will be looking forward to it
Colin, the key is to find a balance that you're happy with between your reading and the other stuff in your life. Some of the group augment their 'reading' with listening to audiobooks while they exercise, do housework or commute; and some of us have given up on TV altogether to give more time to our reading instead.
We joke about real life getting in the way of our reading - like having to go to work, or entertaining visitors, or sleeping ( :D ) - but we're all pretty down-to-earth people who just enjoy a good book...
(And let's face it, we all take time out of our reading to chatter away on here - so we're not totally removed from reality: LOL!)
>114 ColinMichaelFelix: We are the "normal" people and anyone that would say such nice things about us diffidently fits right in. We're happy to have you aboard. If you are enjoying what you're reading..that's all that counts. Andrew is the one of our group that I find the most amazing. He still has not only a job...but a high level, demanding position at that... yet he still finds not only the time to read 200 or so books but also create the most interesting questions for our thoroughly enjoyable group reads. Of course he has to wear a name tag so his wife will remember who he is:)
Playing With Bones by Kate Ellis
Joe Plantagenet series Book #2
From The Book:
Is the Doll Strangler back or is a copycat on the loose?
Singmass Close has a sinister past. Reputedly haunted by the ghosts of children, in the 50s it was the hunting ground of the Doll Strangler, a ruthless killer who was never brought to justice. Now DI Joe Plantagenet wonders whether a copycat killer is at work when the strangled body of teenager Natalie Parkes is found in the same close, a mutilated doll lying by her side.
With the recent disappearance of a young female model and an escaped convict at large, this new, horrific murder stretches Joe's team to their limit. But as the bodies start mounting up and Joe's questioning brings him closer to the real strangler, he comes to suspect a shockingly creepy connection between all three cases.
I like this series for the very reason that several reviewers did not like it... the supernatural element that seems to be a regular theme in all the installments of this series that is absent in Ellis's Wesley Peterson series. These ghostly wisps tantalizingly float just out of sight in the margins of the story.
Some of the characters were a tad unbelievable in their level stupidly...but it didn't interfere with the enjoyment of the story. The ending was unexpected but entirely plausible. Looking forward to the next in the series.
A Question of Identity by Susan Hill
Simon Serrailler series Book #7
From The Book:
A particularly unpleasant murder, that of a very old woman in a housing project, rocks the town of Lafferton. The murderer has left a distinctive "sign" on the body and at the scene of crime. A couple of weeks later, a similar murder occurs, and a month or so later, so does another.
Initial investigations discover that the mysterious "sign" left on the body was the calling card of a suspect who was charged with several murders in the northwest of the country, tried but acquitted on the grounds of insufficient evidence. All indications suggest that this person has simply vanished. Or is he right under their noses? Simon Serrailler is obliged to make delve deeper and scratch out answers,
I really like that Susan Hill has kept the setting of Lafferton, and the characters constant throughout this series. It gives the reader the opportunity to build somewhat of a bond with them. One bond I didn't build was with the murderer that was not only sheltered but given a new identity. This just didn't seem plausible to me. The book also didn't move along quiet as smoothly as her previous books had too many unsolved side stories and took way too long to actually get underway. All the other books in this series have received 4.5 & 5 stars from me...but I just don't feel this one can get more than 4.
Brotherhood in Death by J.D. Robb
In Death series
Unlike many of the latest In Death series, this book was not light reading. LT Eve Dallas is called tohelp Dennis Mira, husband of Dr. Mira, the NYPSD psychiatrist and close friend of Eve. Dennis had been knocked out at the home of his late grandfather; a home he had promised not to sell. He visited the house to talk with his cousin, Sen. Edward Mira, who was intent upon selling. Upon entering the home Dennis saw his cousin sitting beaten in a chair right before he (Dennis) was knocked out. Upon awaking, his cousin was gone. However, Edward was found the next day, hanging from the old home's chandelier, bloody, tortured and very dead. It became Eve's job to find the killer. However, the search lead to Eve dealing with the scars of her own horrific childhood. Who were the murderers and who were the victims? Eve needed to stand for all. It was a hard book to read at some points.
>123 Sergeirocks: So agree. But life does get in the way of reading. Lol. Giving up TV might not be a bad idea, not much good on there anyway plus I'm really almost to that point. But since finding this group my reading has been rejuvenated so that can't be a bad thing. I look forward to more discussions with you guys and gals.
Just about to start a new physical book, Agatha Raisin and the Day the Floods Came (book 12 in the Agatha Raisin Series). This is a light cozy mystery series, the main character isn't the most likeable and she does do some stupid things, but she does kind of grow on you and her actions lead to humorous incidents.
>129 Andrew-theQM: I like the idea of the Agatha Raisin books but I read one last year and I found Agatha so unlikeable that I didn't enjoy the book at all. I have a friend who's read many of the books and I think she feels about the same as you do. Also, maybe some of the books are more humorous than others, which could balance out the unlikeable parts!
>130 gaylebutz: She does sort of grow on you. I felt the same as you after my first couple of books in the series. Although this is book 12 in the series, it will be the 19th one I have read. They are ideal as I approach the end of a long term at school and my tiredness levels increase. I aim to get up to date on the series this year, another 8 to go.
Just finished 7th Heaven by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro. I always wonder how much of these are James actually writing.
Its from the Women's Murder Club series, which I have always found to be somewhat of a misnomer since its really most about Lindsay Boxer and her Police comrades. That being said the book made for an interesting enough read. There are almost three stories going on at once and it could have benefited from losing two. It moved at a mercifully sharp pace and that was appreciated. For me it lacks the sharpness and intensity of an Alex Cross novel but I have read from this series before (12th of Never whiuch I think was better) and I will read again from this series so I consider it a win.
3.5 out of 5 stars.
Next up Ice Cold by Tess Gerritsen
>132 ColinMichaelFelix: Andrew reads that series and he seems to enjoy them. I own the books but haven't started them yet. I hope to soon.
Apprentice in Death by J. D. Robb
In Death series
4 1/2 ⭐s
Finally, a book in this series that has some meat to it. It reminds me of some of why I started reading this series in the first place. The characters are emotionally more believable with even a few insights into relationships formed over the years and the "family" which Roarke and Eve have built around themselves. Eve Dallas is confronted with a LDSK, long distance serial killer, the likes which haven't been seen since the Urban Wars of the early 21st century. Random killings, or is there a pattern and purpose? 3 people are shot down at an ice skating rink by a sniper using a laser rifle. Eve and her partner Peabody have to figure the means and motive before more victims begin stacking up. Things are intense, as there are very few snipers skilled enough for such shooting other than those in the military or NYPSD's own tactical SWAT team. This is one of the best of this series in many years. I read it in one sitting.
>130 gaylebutz: Hey friend! Good to have some company. I thought I was the only living human being on Planet Earth that didn't like Agatha Christie. I will have to admit there was one exception that read as a Blind Date With A Book that I thoroughly enjoyed...And Then There Was None. I actually gave it 5 stars.
>135 Carol420: I think they are talking about Agatha Raisin books by M.C. Beaton.
>132 ColinMichaelFelix: >133 EadieB: I do enjoy The Women's Murder Club Series and I also think Maxine Paetro writes most of the books. They are not the greatest books ever, but are very enjoyable and I like the characters and the interaction between them . Admittedly some are better than others. I have read all of the first 15, having read the first one as a Group Read! Just need to read 16th Seduction which has only recently come out and there is a queue for it at the library. Will show patience and wait for the queue to die down. I enjoyed the early Alex Cross books (a lot) but didn't think he stayed true to character so lost interest in these.
>139 Andrew-theQM: >140 EadieB:
Thoroughly agree with Andrew, they're quick reads quite harmless nothing too deep but generally fun. I know conventional wisdom will suggest starting at the beginning of the series but my reccomendation to you, Eadie, would be to start with some of the later numbers particularly the double digits
Everything to Lose by Andrew Gross
From The Book:
While driving along a suburban back road, Hilary Cantor, who's just lost her job and whose deadbeat husband has left her to care for her son who has Asperger's, witnesses a freakish accident when a deer suddenly darts in front of the car ahead of her. The driver careens down a hill and slams into a tree. Rushing to help, she discovers the car smoking, the driver dead—and a satchel on the floor stuffed with a half million dollars.
That money could prevent her family's ruin and keep her son in school. In an instant, this honest, achieving woman who has always done the responsible thing makes a decision that puts her in the center of a maelstrom of unforeseeable consequences and life-threatening recriminations. It isn't long before someone comes looking for the money, and as they get closer and closer to Hilary, she is pulled into a terrifying scheme involving a twenty-year-old murder, an old woman whose entire life has been washed out to sea by the storm, and a powerful figure determined to maintain the secret that can destroy him.
With everything to lose and putting everything she loves at risk, Hilary joins up with a dogged police official from Staten Island who has his own connections to the money and is dealing with his family's tragic struggles in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Together they must fight to bring down an enemy who will stop at nothing to keep buried what that money was meant to silence.
What Hillary did was wrong...but you just can't help hoping that she'll get away with it. I found myself completely wrapped up in the story and the characters. Andrew Gross has managed to put an ordinary, everyday person into a breathtakingly suspenseful and dangerous situation and works his magic with the twists and turns that will keep the reader turning the pages to see how it all turns out. All the time you have to ask yourself... "In Hillary's situation would I have done the same thing to protect my family?"
These is my Words: The Diary of Sarah Agnes Prine, 1881-1901 by Nancy E. Turner - ★★★★★
I listened to the audio of this book. It is a family's memoir of Sarah Prine, a woman who survived and prevailed in the Arizona Territory in the late 1800's. The reader was very good and captured the emotions of Sarah and the strength and physical endurance she needed to survive the hardships she faced. I enjoyed the relationship between Sarah and Jack Elliot, who she truly loved. The author did an incredible amount of research and it truly is a beautiful story that will stay with you a long time. I would highly recommend this book to those who like stories about the western frontier.
My Lady Judge by Cora Harrison - ★★★★
This was a great book about the Burren region in Ireland and a look at Irish Medieval history in the 16th century. It shows the roles that women and men played in the political and social events of that time. Mara is a lady judge and uses the Brehon law in order to make wise decisions. I also enjoyed her budding romance with the King and I will be sure to read the next books of the series as I am interesting in following the romance as it develops. The characters are believable and the murder plot was intriguing and held my attention in regards to how Mara solves the crime. I would highly recommend this series to those who enjoy reading about Medieval Ireland or the Peter Tremayne series.
Playing with Bones by Kate Ellis (#2 Joe Plantagenet Series) ★★★★★
Kate Ellis certainly delivered on this one! I found the characters to be unique and interesting and the plot well-paced. The book is very well written with great twists and a surprise ending. There is a paranormal element to the series but it is very slight and not overpowering. All in all, a very entertaining read and very worthwhile and I look forward to the other books in the series. I would highly recommend this book to those who love their mysteries with a touch of supernatural.
The Rome Prophecy by Jon Trace - Historical Mystery - ★★★★
A woman has been arrested on the streets of Rome. She's young. She's beautiful. She's covered in blood. And she claims to be on the run from a mighty power that centuries ago brought the eternal city to its knees.
This was an entertaining, fun-to-read book but the jumping back and forth between time lines was somewhat distracting. I like the characters Tom Shaman and Valentina Morassi and enjoyed their relationship and their trying to discover who the mysterious woman, Ana, really was. I found all the characters to be engaging and the mystery of the woman was very interesting. The ending was a bit thrilling and was the highlight of the book. There was also a cliffhanger at the end about Tom having to more on but a 3rd book has never been written nor has this been explained. Other then that, I enjoyed the book and I would recommend it to those who like Dan Brown's books.
>148 EadieB: I read the first Tom Shaman book (an interesting character) so need to get to this.
Ghost Girl by Torey Hayden
From The Book:
Jadie never spoke. She never laughed, or cried, or uttered any sound. Despite efforts to reach her, Jadie remained locked in her own troubled world—until one remarkable teacher persuaded her to break her self-imposed silence. Nothing in all of Torey Hayden's experience could have prepared her for the shock of what Jadie told her—a story too horrendous for Torey's professional colleagues to acknowledge. Yet a little girl was living in a nightmare, and Torey Hayden responded in the only way she knew how—with courage, compassion, and dedication—demonstrating once again the tremendous power of love and the resilience of the human spirit.
There is no nice, happily after-after, story book ending to this story of Jadie, a severely traumatized child who had so many different problems they were difficult to decide which was the most severe. It was finally determined that more than one thing may have been responsible for her condition...either separately or together.. She was either psychotic or was being ritually abused by members of an occult group. Torey Hayden was a young professional at the time...the beginning of her career and often found herself being made to feel inadequate by her older, more experienced colleagues who thought that they knew better...and to make mattes worse.... were not open to new ideas about special education and the needs of these special children. Hindsight is 20/20, and we all can look back later and wish we had seen the broader picture. Torey's honesty in writing about her own second thoughts made the story so much more compelling. I don't recommend this book to anyone that would have problems reading the graphic...intense... dirty details about the life and treatment of an 8 year old girl. THIS IS NOT FICTION. I do however, applaud Torey Hayden's courage in telling the story.
Schedule for Group Read of The Forbidden Tomb by Chris Kuzneski, #2 in the Hunters Series.
Friday 24th March : Prologue and 1 - 12
Saturday 25th March : 13 - 25
Sunday 26th March : 26 - 39
Monday 27th March : 40 - 53
Tuesday 28th March : 54 - 69
Wednesday 29th March : 70 - 83 and Epilogue
Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough
From The Book:
Louise is a single mom, a secretary, stuck in a modern-day rut. On a rare night out, she meets a man in a bar and sparks fly. Though he leaves after they kiss, she’s thrilled she finally connected with someone.
When Louise arrives at work on Monday, she meets her new boss, David. The man from the bar. The very married man from the bar…who says the kiss was a terrible mistake, but who still can’t keep his eyes off Louise.
And then Louise bumps into Adele, who’s new to town and in need of a friend. But she also just happens to be married to David. And if you think you know where this story is going, think again, because Behind Her Eyes is like no other book you’ve read before.
David and Adele look like the picture-perfect husband and wife. But then why is David so controlling? And why is Adele so scared of him?
As Louise is drawn into David and Adele’s orbit, she uncovers more puzzling questions than answers. The only thing that is crystal clear is that something in this marriage is very, very wrong. But Louise can’t guess how wrong―and how far a person might go to protect their marriage’s secrets.
This was an extraordinary story. Never in a million years could I have ever have guessed the outcome. It's also a dark story told through first person viewpoints. The timeline shifts between "then" and "now." I usually find this technique frustrating...but not for this one. I would recommend it for lovers of mysteries, thrillers, and psychological suspense. novels. I found the middle to be a bit slow...hence the 4 stars.
>152 Carol420: Your review has me intrigued. I've put this on my TBR list.
Birthdays For the Dead by Stuart MacBride
Ash Henderson series Book #1
From The Book:
A bloody, brilliant and brutal story of murder, kidnap and revenge.
Detective Constable Ash Henderson has a dark secret. Five years ago his daughter, Rebecca, went missing on the eve of her thirteenth birthday. A year later the first card arrived: home-made, with a Polaroid picture stuck to the front – Rebecca, strapped to a chair, gagged and terrified. Every year another card: each one worse than the last. The tabloids call him ‘The Birthday Boy’. He’s been snatching girls for twelve years, always just before their thirteenth birthday, killing them slowly, then torturing their families with his homemade cards.
Ash hasn’t told anyone what really happened to Rebecca – they all think she ran away – because if anyone finds out, he’ll be taken off the investigation. And he’s sacrificed too much to give up before his daughter’s murderer gets what he deserves.
The jury is still out on Ash Henderson but it is totally back in the box on Dr. McDonald, the forensic profiler and psychologist. My opinion is that she needs a psychiatrist...and he might want to take a look at the rest of the team. What a nut job! Even Ash calls her "DrFruitLoop". And then there is Ash... "a horse of an entirely different color" doesn't even begin to describe him. I entirely understood his need to find these girls but what have the police been doing for the past ten or twelve years since the "Birthday Boy" took the first one? He is a total loose cannon with an explosive temper...owes money to a group of loan sharks...has an on the border drug problem because of chronic pain with his back...and the problems with his ex wife and 12 year old remaining daughter are just too numerous to mention.
All of the characters are totally unlikable and nonredeemable for the most part. One reviewer described the story as "cringe - worthy". That does pretty much round it off. This book is not for those that don't want loads of blood and violence in their reads...but the characters are so off the wall you just have to see how they plan to solve this.
Devil's Food Cake Murder by Joanne Fluke
A Hannah Swensen Mystery
Yawn. Lake Eden, Minnesota's minister is going on a honeymoon cruise. A family fried offers to fill in at the church for two weeks. Unfortunately, Hannah Swenson, owner of The Cookie Jar coffee shop, finds the substitute pastor shot dead at his desk in the church office. Of course, Hannah decides to investigate. Meanwhile, things are not well in Hannah's love life. Norman, the dentist, seems to be showing interest in his business partner, Dr. Bev. This was a very ho-hum lackluster addition to this series. Now I remember, why I stopped reading this series.
Cinnamon Roll Murder by Joanne Fluke
A Hannah Swensen Mystery
One of the better Hannah Swenson mysteries I've read, albeit very simplistic. Hannah is unhappily awaiting the wedding of her beloved dentist, Norman, to Dr. Bev, another dentist with whom he shares a daughter, Diana. Meanwhile, Hannah comes across a huge accident on an icy highway while she and her sister are making a delivery of cinnamon rolls to a local lodge. The lodge is hosting a jazz fest featuring The Cinnamon Roll Six, an upcoming jazz band. Unfortunately, the band's bus one one of the vehicles in the accident. It rolled over, and the driver was dead. All band members survived, but were taken to the local hospital robe checked out. While there, the keyboard player is murdered. Hannah along with her Mom and sister's set out to solve the murder. In doing so, Hannah uncovers information which will affect Norman's future. A quick little few hour read.
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