Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Night Fall

Night Fall by Nelson DeMille;


Five years after flight TWA 800 disappeared over the ocean John Corey and his wife Kate Mayfield both of the Federal Anti-Terrorist Task Force attend the reunion of  the victim's families. Kate who worked the investigation has never believed the finding of 'mechanical failure'. Of course Corey, the smart-ass former NYC detective takes the bait and starts to investigate again. He is warned off and this makes it more enticing to find out just what happened.

Corey finds out that a crucial video of an adulterous couple making love on the beach is missing and/or has never been watched or conveniently stashed away.

I love conspiracy theories and there are plenty of twists and turns to make this a very enjoyable story. But if you expect to find a satisfactory and conclusive ending you will be disappointed. The ending is explosive and probably the only ending that could be told. Does that make you want to read the book? Good!!

First Line: "Bud Mitchell drove his Ford Explorer along Dune Road."

Sunday, January 27, 2013

People of the Book

People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks
Historical Fiction
Hanna Heath, a young Australian book conservationist is summoned to Sarajevo in order to preserve the Sarajevo Haggadah, a Jewish prayer book about passover. Hanna gets to work and finds clues as to the hands it once passed through; a bit of butterfly, a stain.

This books tells a story both in the present and the past. I was much more interested in the past story as it covered various Jewish persecutions and the stories seem to come to life. The present story was a little contrived and not quite as believable, starting with Hanna being such a great restorer at such a young age.

The past travels through Bosnia where a Muslim hid the book to preserve it, Austria-Hungary, Italy and Spain where this illuminated manuscript was first created and saved when the Jews were expelled,

I also liked to read the story on the conservation efforts. All in all an interesting read!

First Line: "I might as well say, right from the jump: it wasn't my usual kind of job."

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Hard Eight

Hard Eight by Janet Evanovich
Mabel Markowitz, Stephanie's mother's neighbour asks Stephanie to check on the whereabouts of her daughter Evelyn Soder. She has gone missing along with her daughter. Mabel's house may be in jeopardy as she put it up as part of the child custody agreement.
In the course of this investigation Stephanie comes across Eddie Ambruzzi, a psycho. Ambruzzi has Stephanie trailed by a rabbit and leaves her snakes and spiders and dead bodies.

Stephanie is also in the process of bringing in Andy Bender, with help from a lawyer clown, Albert Kloughn. She ends up losing an endless number of handcuffs and a car in the process. This part is absolutely hilarious. Bender is interested in Stephanie's sister Valerie who has moved back home with her children.

and the best part is that Stephanie finally gets it on with Ranger. About time!!

First Line: "Lately, I've been spending a lot of time rolling on the ground with men who think a stiffy represents personal growth."

Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
A long time ago seven kingdoms existed and they were brought together under King Robert through battle. Now there are those who wish more power and plot to get that and those who are forced to leave to save their lives and plot to return gloriously. There are also those content with who they are and their king refuses to let them be and wishes their services.

This is a land where summers last for decades but winter is approaching and the supernatural forces beyond the kingdom are amassing. This is also a land of magic and dragons.

With all the wonderful themes of life and death, war, deception, betrayal, cowardice and bravery how could this book have not lived up to its expectations.

I thoroughly enjoyed the read. I had a bit of trouble for the first 100 pages getting the characters straight but Martin does a great job of giving each character their own chapter to help keep them in place.

A recommended read!!

First Line: "We should start back, Gared urged as the woods began to grow dark around them"

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Imitation in Death by J.D. Robb

Imitation in Death by J.D. Robb

This is yet another book in the futuristic detective series featuring Eve Dallas. This time, she is called to gruesome crime scene where a licensed companion had been slashed in the throat and then had her pelvic area removed from her body. A note is left on the scene addressing Dallas directly. Dallas' aide, Peabody, can't handle the scene. The two set out to figure out who this killer is and realize that the killer imitated Jack the Ripper with the murder.

As they track down the stationary used with the note, another murder happens, copying a different serial killer. Eve knows she needs to track down this egotistical killer quickly. At the same time, Peabody is getting ready for her detective's exam which she is very nervous about.

This novel has what you come to expect from the series. Usually there's a good amount of personal life included from Dallas. This one had a little less so, I'm interested to hear about Mavis' baby but she was hardly mentioned at all in this book.

My biggest gripe with this book is that the cover ruins the entire book. It basically tells you who the murderer is. I've never had this problem before! Whoever designed the cover is an idiot!

First Line: "Summer of 2059 was a mean and murderous bitch who showed no sign of lightening her mood."


Friday, January 11, 2013

Rivals for the Crown

Rivals for the Crownr by _Kathleen Givens
Historical Romance
In 1290 the young queen of Scotland dies and there are now many rivals for the crown.

But in England Edward I also wants the kingdom and is ruthless enough to try to overtake Scotland.

Kieran MacDonald and Rory MacGannon are two young Highlanders whose parents have sent them to Berwick to get some sense of what is going on. Kieran meets Rachel, a Jewess, whose father has just started up an inn. Rachel and her family were expelled from England because of their faith. Rachel asks Kieran to find out about Isabel her London friend and lady-in-waiting to the English queen. Isabel has her own pack of troubles and eventually re-unites with Rachel.

But the wars and romantic troubles continue.

I enjoyed the history behind the scenes and the romance was a nice side story.

First Line: "Rachel!"

Monday, January 07, 2013

The Godfather by Mario Puzo

The Godfather by Mario Puzo

The book that inspired the classic movie The Godfather tells the story of the Corleone family from Sicily, now the most powerful family in New York. The Godfather is Don Vito Corleone, a tough and yet fair mob boss with three boys Fred, Sonny, and Mike and a daughter Connie. The Tattaglia family approaches the Corleones with the Turk Sollozzo about starting in to the drug trade but the Don isn't interested. Before Sollozzo leaves, Sonny opens his mouth and asks about how much money they could make. This act eventually gets the Don shot multiple times because the Tattaglia family believes with the Don out of the way, Sonny will join their business venture. All this does is create war between the families.

During war time, the family must come together and split apart as traitors are found. The youngest son, Mike, who was not supposed to be part of the family business ends up being deeply involved in the struggle for power.

I have never seen the movie before so there were surprises for me in this book. Reading the book definitely makes me want to see the movie. Despite this, there were some slow parts of the book. The whole Las Vegas part of the book I felt lacked in excitement and was only there so that a small piece could be tied up in the end of the book. Furthermore, just as the action was getting exciting near the end, there is a short break to explain who one of the new characters was! It was frustrating to say the least. The book perfectly describes the cool calculation you need to be a mobster.

First Line: "Amerigo Bonasera sat in the New York Criminal Court Number 3 and waited for justice; vengeance on the men who had so cruelly hurt his daughter, who had tried to dishonor her."