Sunday, March 27, 2011

Nothing to Fear by Karen Rose 2011 - 21

As director of an inner-city woman's shelter, Dana Dupinsky safeguards many secrets. Some are new identities; some are new addresses; and some are even hidden truths about herself. Passionately dedicated to Hanover House and the women she protects, Dana has always been reluctant to look for love. But now, just as a case puts her and a child in mortal danger, it seems that love has come looking for her.

Security expert Ethan Buchanan learned to stalk men in the Afghan desert. Now he vows to track down the ruthless woman who kidnapped his godson-and falling for Dana is not in the plan. Yet her very presence seems to chase away the ghosts that haunt him, and her skillful evasion of personal questions raises his hunting instincts. For there's a deadly new secret at Hanover House. A brutal killer is weaving a web of revenge with a stolen boy at its center. And Dana is the next victim on the list...

My Review:  Really enjoyed the book.  Lots of unexpected twists and turns and just the right amount of romance.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Immoral by Brian Freeman 2011 - 20

Completed March 2011.

A Harlan Coban–esque murder/psychological suspense structure and some uninspired writing ("He saw urgency written in her face") add up to a mildly interesting but unsurprising thriller for first-timer Freeman. Called to investigate the disappearance of beautiful teenager Ruth Stoner, Duluth, Minn., police detective Lt. Jonathan Stride is haunted by the disappearance of another teen, Kerry McGrath, 14 months earlier. Stride's an honest, likable cop, full of angst over the cancer death of his beloved wife. He has a great working relationship with diminutive partner Maggie Bei, who's been in love with him for years. As Stride and Mags investigate, the only aspect of the case that becomes clear is that everyone involved with the crime—the victim, her family and her friends—is guilty of something. Tweezing apart these strands of guilt and trying to connect them to the missing Ruth occupies Stride for more than three years. Finally, in an extended denouement, the pieces fall into place, and Stride is able to solve not only the mysteries of both Ruth and Kelly, but mend his own fractured life as well.

My Review:  Excellent new author I have never read before.  This book was great.  It kept me guessing all the way to the final chapter.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Long Lost by Harlan Coben 2011 - 19

Completed March 2011

#1 New York Times bestselling author Harlan Coben’s blistering new Myron Bolitar thriller takes Myron—and his millions of fans—where they have never gone before Myron Bolitar hasn’t heard from Terese Collins since their torrid affair ended ten years ago, so her desperate phone call from Paris catches him completely off guard. In a shattering admission, Terese reveals the tragic story behind her disappearance—her struggles to get pregnant, the greatest moment of her life when her baby was born…and the fatal accident that robbed her of it all: her marriage, her happiness and her beloved only daughter. Now a suspect in the murder of her ex-husband in Paris, Terese has nowhere else to turn for help. Myron heeds the call. But then a startling piece of evidence turns the entire case upside down, laying bare Terese’s long-buried family secrets…and the very real possibility that her daughter may still be alive. In grave danger from unknown assailants in a country where nothing is as it seems, Myron and Terese race to stay a step ahead of Homeland Security, Interpol, and Mossad. Soon they are working at breakneck pace, not only to learn what really happened to Terese’s long-lost little girl— but to uncover a sinister plot with shocking global implications.

My Review:  Another great Myron Bolitar mystery.  This one had even more unexpected twists and turns.

Hide In Plain Sight (Three Sisters Inn Series) by Marta Perry 2011 - 18

Completed February 2011

Book 1 of the Three Sisters Inn Series. When Andrea Hampton returns to her Amish community when her sister Rachel is injured in an accident. She is forced to stay to help with the opening of the Three Sisters Inn (B&B) and becomes entangled in a series of strange happenings. Carpenter Cal Burke who is a renter of her grandmother comes to her aid in more ways then one.

My Review:  Very good book. Look forward to reading others in the series.

Promise Me by Harlan Coben 2011 - 17

Completed February 2011

New York Times bestselling author Harlan Coben returns with PROMISE ME--a searing new thriller and a story of how far we will go to protect our own…. It has been six years since entertainment agent Myron Bolitar last played superhero. In six years he hasn’t thrown a punch. He hasn’t held, much less fired, a gun. He hasn’t called his friend Win, still the scariest man he knows, to back him up or get him out of trouble. All that is about to change...because of a promise. The school year is almost over. Anxious families await word of college acceptances. In these last pressure-cooker months of high school, some kids will make the all-too- common and all-too-dangerous mistake of drinking and driving. But Myron is determined to help keep his friends’ children safe, and so he makes two neighborhood girls promise him: If they are ever in a bind but are afraid to call their parents, they must call him. Several nights later, the call comes at 2:00 am, and true to his word, Myron picks up one of the girls in midtown Manhattan and drives her to a quiet cul-de-sac in New Jersey where she says her friend lives. The next day, the girl’s parents discover that their daughter is missing. And that Myron was the last person to see her. Desperate to fulfill a well-intentioned promise turned nightmarishly wrong, Myron races to find her before she’s gone forever. But his past will not be buried so easily - for trouble has always stalked him, and his loved ones often suffer. Now Myron must decide once and for all who he is and what he will stand up for if he is to have any hope of saving a young girl’s life.

My Review:  Great new mystery series for me to read.  I really enjoy the unexpected twists.  Look forward to reading more Myron Bolitar novels.

Reaper by Rachel Vincent 2011 - 16

Completed February 2011

Tod Hudson was a typical teenager. He liked girls, sports, food and tolerated his younger brother, Nash. In fact, he had his whole life in front of him--and due to his bean sidhe heritage, it was going to be a very long life indeed. And then the car accident occurred. Suddenly Tod's future wasn't so sure, and he had to make a choice. Life... Death... or something Between

My Review:  A pretty interesting book about making trade offs for those that we love.

Squidge: Little Elf, Big Trouble by Andrew Thomas 2011 - 15

Completed February 2011

Squidge is a little elf who wants to do what the bigger elves do. When he takes matters into his own hands and causes a disaster in Santa's workshop, Squidge runs away... and ends up going further than he would ever have dreamt. Can such a little elf save Santa and Christmas?

My Review:  Cute little book.  Great free Kindle book!

Oleander House by Ally Blue 2011 - 14

Completed February 2011

When Sam Raintree goes to work for Bay City Paranormal Investigations, he expects his quiet life to change-he doesn't expect to put his life and sanity on the line, or to fall for a man he can never have. Book One in the Bay City Paranormal Investigation series. Sam Raintree has never been normal. All his life, he's experienced things he can't explain. Things that have colored his view of the world and of himself. So taking a job as a paranormal investigator seems like a perfect fit. His new co-workers, he figures, don't have to know he's gay. When Sam arrives at Oleander House, the site of his first assignment with Bay City Paranormal Investigations, nothing is what he expected. The repetitive yet exciting work, the unusual and violent history of the house, the intensely erotic and terrifying dreams which plague his sleep. But the most unexpected thing is Dr. Bo Broussard, the group's leader. From the moment they meet, Sam is strongly attracted to his intelligent, alluring boss. It doesn't take Sam long to figure out that although Bo has led a heterosexual life, he is very much in the closet, and wants Sam as badly as Sam wants him. As the investigation of Oleander House progresses and paranormal events in the house escalate, Sam and Bo circle warily around their mutual attraction, until a single night of bloodshed and revelation changes their lives forever. Warning: this title contains explicit male/male sex, intense violence, and graphic language.

My Review:  Story line is good.  This book has very graphic male-on-male sexual descriptions and may not be for anyone who might have a problem with that.

After the Leaves Fall by Nicole Baart 2011 - 13

Completed February 2011

Julia DeSmit can't wait for her life to begin. After her mother leaves when Julia is nine years old, she's raised by an unassuming, gentle father and a saintly, matriarchal grandmother until her father dies just as Julia is becoming a young adult. On the cusp of womanhood, Julia feels jaded by her circumstances and longs for a new identity. College seems like the perfect place to start over. But when Julia makes a mistake that will change her life forever, she returns to her grandmother's farm, defeated and convinced of her own worthlessness. Only through the gentle prodding of her loving grandmother does Julia begin to accept the imprint her childhood has left on her life and look for hope in a loving God who longs to make all things new.

My Review:  A good book but the ending was awkward.

I Love You This Much: A Song of God's Love by Sue Buchanan 2011 - 12

Completed February 2011

Share God's love for his children through this moving story about the love between a parent and child. This sweet little tale is based on a beautiful lullaby, I Love You This Much, sung by a parent to a child, as a gentle reminder to children of just how much they are loved by their earthly parents -- as well as their heavenly Father. Filled with picturesque illustrations that reflect the soothing melody and gentle words, you and your child will treasure the precious moments shared together with this wonderful story, I Love You This Much.

My Review:  What a cute children's book.  Using this for inspiration.

Beasts and BFF's by Shannon Delany 2011 - 11

Completed February 2011

Short Stories by Shannon Delany

My Review:  Kindle edition of the book.  Not a fan of this teaser.  Couldn't wrap my arms around the story line

The Wild's Call by Jeri Smith-Ready 2011 - 10

Completed February 2011

Years after the crash of modern society when people have become barberic, friends Elysia and Darien follow what turns out to be animal spirits that lead them into the wilderness to create a new society.

My Review:  Short story on Kindle. Easy short read that will drive me toward the next book.

The Gift by James Patterson 2011 - 9

Completed February 2011

Ever since Whit and Wisty Allgood were cruelly torn from their home and family in the middle of the night, the soldiers of a brutal totalitarian government have relentlessly tried to capture and execute them for 'collusion, conspiracy, and experimentation with the dark and foul arts'. But this supremely skilled witch and wizard have instead boldly spearheaded the fight against the wicked regime of the New Order and its systematic destruction of music, art, books, and imagination. The villainous leader of the New Order is just a breath away from the ability to control the forces of nature and to manipulate his citizens on the most profound level imaginable -– through their minds. There is only one more thing he needs to triumph in his evil quest: the Gifts of Whit and Wisty Allgood. And he will stop at nothing to seize them.

My Review:  Excellent book.  Can't wait for the next book in the series.

Against All Odds by Irene Hannon 2011 - 8

Completed January 2011

FBI Hostage Rescue Team members Evan Cooper and his partner Mark Sanders are assigned dignitary protection duty for Monica Callahan who is the daughter of an American diplomant.  She is estranged from her diplomat father and when he becomes involved in a sensitive hostage situation in the Middle East she becomes a target. 

My Review:  This is a wonderful Christian Romantic Suspense novel that has an FBI angle.  It keeps the reader interested from beginning to end!

Remedial Magic by Jenna Black 2011 - 7

Completed January 2011

A very short story about a young girl named Kimber who wants to have the magic powers her brother Ethan possesses.

My review:  Book was free on kindle but really not worth the effort.

Don't Die Dragonfly by Linda Singleton 2011 - 6

Completed January 2011

After getting kicked out of school and sent to live with her grandmother, Sabine Rose is determined to become a "normal" teenage girl. She hides her psychic powers from everyone, even from her grandmother Nona, who also has "the gift." Having a job at the school newspaper and friends like Penny-Love, a popular cheerleader, have helped Sabine fit in at her new school. She has even managed to catch the eye of the adorable Josh DeMarco. Yet, Sabine can't seem to get the bossy voice of Opal, her spirit guide, out of her head . . . or the disturbing images of a girl with a dragonfly tattoo. Suspected of a crime she didn't commit, Sabine must find the strength to defend herself and, later, save a friend from certain danger.

My Review:  An excellent book.  I look forward to reading the others in the series.

Magyk (Septimus Heap Book 1) by Angie Sage 2011 - 5

Completed January 2011

The seventh son of the seventh son, aptly named Septimus Heap, is stolen the night he is born by a midwife who pronounces him dead. That same night, the baby's father, Silas Heap, comes across a bundle in the snow containing a new-born girl with violet eyes. The Heaps take this helpless newborn into their home, name her Jenna, and raise her as their own. But who is this mysterious baby girl, and what really happened to their beloved son Septimus? The first book in this enthralling new series by Angie Sage leads readers on a fantastic journey filled with quirky characters and magykal charms, potions, and spells. Magyk is an original story of lost and rediscovered identities, rich with humor and heart.

Evil necromancer DomDaniel is plotting his comeback. Having 'executed' the most daring ruthless part of his plan, one obstacle remains. But this obstacle, although small, is proving to be a challenge, and DomDaniel is not fond of challenges he hasn't created personally. They tend not to live for long ... unless, that is, they happen to be a member of the Heap family
My Review:  Excellent Young Adult book that can be enjoyed by anyone.  I loved the magic.

Witch and Wizard by James Patterson 2011 - 4

Completed January 2011

Witch and Wizard Wisty and Whit Allgood are thrust into the change of a lifetime when the New Order takes over and they are taken from their parents who never told them about their special powers. After escaping from the New Order the adventure is on

My Review:  This is a GREAT young adult book that is fun for kids and adults alike.

Edge by Jeffrey Deaver 2011 - 3

Completed January 2011

Detective Kessler is a Washington, D.C. cop, sidelined to routine investigations. So it's a surprise when he's targeted by a 'lifter,' a person who 'lifts' information from people by whatever means necessary. And this lifter is one of the most terrifying: he prefers to get an 'edge' on his target by kidnapping or endangering their family. While the FBI and other organizations race to learn which of Kessler's seemingly insignificant cases is making somebody so uneasy they've called in a lifter, the task of safeguarding the cop, his wife and daughter, falls to expert in personal security, Corte. What ensues is a deadly contest between Corte and the lifter as each tries to outmanoeuvre the other - and a surprising conclusion that even Deaver fans won't see coming ...

My Review:  The book was very difficult to get into at first but picked up about halfway through.

Tick Tock by James Patterson 2011 - 2

Completed January 2011

A bomb set in one of New York's busiest places is discovered before it explodes. But relief turns to terror when the police realize it is just a warning of greater devastation to come. The city calls on Detective Michael Bennett, pulling him away from a seaside vacation with his ten adopted children and their beloved nanny, Mary Catherine--leaving his entire family open to attack. Bennett enlists the help of a former colleague, FBI Agent Beth Peters. His affection for Beth grows into attraction and then something stronger, and his relationship with Mary Catherine takes an unexpected turn. Another horrifying crime leads Bennett to a shocking discovery that exposes the killer's pattern--and the earth-shattering enormity of his plan.

My Review - Excellent Book.  Well worth the wait.  I am looking forward to more Detective Michael Bennett books.

Serial by J.A. Konrath 2011 - 1

Completed Reading: January 2011 

Serial is the priceless story about the irony of a serial killer who picks up hitchhikers and a hitchhiker who is a serial killer.

This really is a great book.