Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Book Review Tuesday

First and foremost, go here to read Dr. M’s post about how George Washington started the French & Indian War!

The last time I did a book post was March!! I’ve read 23 new books since then (this doesn’t count the 37 books I reread). So I’m not going to go into as much detail as usual. In fact I’ll do a whole new format. Woo hoo!

Series Books (unless it’s a new series for me, I’ll skip a description)
  • Blood Salt Water (Alex Morrow #5), by Denise Mina (3 stars)
  • The Gambit With Perfection (The Phantom of the Earth #2), by Raeden Zen (3 stars)
  • Brotherhood in Death (In Death #42), by J.D. Robb (4 stars). Reading this latest “in death” book is what made me want to start rereading the whole series – I wanted a refresher course on all the characters. I’m up to book #33 - almost to the point where I can remember the plot and the bad guy (or guy-ess). Yay me!
  • The Mezzo Wore Mink, The Diva Wore Diamonds, The Organist Wore Pumps, and The Countertenor Wore Garlic (The Liturgical Mystery, books 6-10), by Mark Schweizer (4 stars for everyone!)
  • The Catch (Vanessa Michael Munroe #4), by Taylor Stevens (4 stars)
  •  The Girl in the Spider's Web (Millennium Trilogy #4), by David Lagercrantz, Stieg Larsson (Creator), George Goulding (Translator) (3 stars)
  • The Hidden Child  (Fjällbacka #5), by Camilla Läckberg (4 stars)
  •  Leave the Grave Green (Duncan Kincaid & Gemma James #3), by Deborah Crombie (4 stars)
  •  The Guardians Trilogy, books 1 & 2 (Stars of Fortune, Bay of Sighs), Nora Roberts. This is Nora’s newest trilogy, about good & evil, gods, magical beings, mortals – you know, the usual. I liked the first one better than the second one. (4 stars, 3 stars)
  • Open and Shut (Andy Carpenter #1), by David Rosenfelt. This series is about a defense attorney, so there’s a lot of courtroom drama. But Andy is hilarious. I thoroughly enjoyed this first book in the series. (4 stars)

The Rest of Them
  • Shadow Woman, by Linda Howard. This one was an accident. I was looking for this book, and got the Linda Howard book instead. Her books are romances tarted up as thrillers. The plot was pretty interesting – a woman involved in a top secret mission has her memory wiped, but then it starts coming back. But meh. It didn’t help that I made Dr. M listen to the book on one of our trips. You know it’s bad when you’re cringing & apologizing for the book. Ha! (2 stars)
  • 11/22/63, by Stephen King. Oh Stephen, just shut up for a minute please! This is his ginormous novel about what would have happened if someone could go back in time to stop the JFK assassination. He’s such a good writer, and the plot was interesting, but it needed about 400 fewer pages. (3 stars)
  •  The Song Remains the Same, by Allison Winn Scotch. This was a book from my 2014 book a day calendar. The plot is interesting – a woman is one of only two survivors of a plane crash, but she has amnesia & can’t remember anything prior to waking up in the hospital. It was just ok. (3 stars)
  • Ashley Bell (Ashley Bell #1), by Dean Koontz. At twenty-two, Bibi Blair’s doctors tell her that she’s dying. Two days later, she’s impossibly cured. Fierce, funny, dauntless, she becomes obsessed with the idea that she was spared because she is meant to save someone else. Someone named Ashley Bell. ...Searching for Ashley Bell, ricocheting through a southern California landscape that proves strange and malevolent in the extreme, Bibi is plunged into a world of crime and conspiracy.... I ordinarily like Dean Koontz a lot, but this one started getting annoying toward the end. I enjoyed it, and love the twist in it, the by the end I just wanted everyone to shut up. Ha! (3 stars)
  • The Liar, by Nora Roberts. “Shelby Foxworth lost her husband. Then she lost her illusions… The man who took her from Tennessee to an exclusive Philadelphia suburb left her in crippling debt. He was an adulterer and a liar, and when Shelby tracks down his safe-deposit box, she finds multiple IDs. The man she loved wasn’t just dead. He never really existed. Shelby takes her three-year-old daughter and heads south to seek comfort in her hometown…” Just another Nora Roberts “I’m more powerful than I thought I was” woman book. (4 stars)
  • The Obsession, by Nora Roberts. Naomi Bowes lost her innocence the night she followed her father into the woods. In freeing the girl trapped in the root cellar, Naomi revealed the horrible extent of her father’s crimes and made him infamous. Now a successful photographer living under the name Naomi Carson…” This one was another Nora Roberts “I Am Woman Hear Me Roar” book. (4 stars)
  •  Holding Smoke, by Elle Cosimano. I read this one for book club. The plot was interesting – a young man is in a juvenile detention center for committing two murders, but he has the ability to leave his body behind & explore the outside world. It was a great read, with an interesting twist. (4 stars)
  • The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry, by Gabrielle Zevin. This was also for book club. It’s about a curmudgeonly man who owns a book store on a small island. The book spans about 18 years or so, following A. J. Fikry’s life as it turns in unexpected directions. It was totally charming – or at least I was totally charmed. (5 stars)
  •  Searching for Sunday: Loving, Leaving, and Finding the Church, by Rachel Held Evans. This was one of only a few nonfiction books I read, and the only one I’m including here because I FREAKING LOVED THIS BOOK!! She was speaking my language throughout the whole thing – raised in an evangelical tradition, the “good girl” who finally because so disillusioned by church that she left, who is now trying to find her way back to a life lived in a faith community. Yes, yes, and yes. (5 stars)
I’m sorry this is so very long, but I wanted to get everything out there. I would promise to post these more often in the future, but we know how that goes. Ha!


  1. Stephen King has been needing an editor for about 30 years now. Ever since "The Tommyknockers" or thereabouts.

  2. Ashley Bell is in my upcoming book report. I enjoyed it but like you found it a bit tiresome towards the end. and I read The Storied Life Of A. J. Fikry a while back and loved it. Highly recommend it.

  3. That's an impressive list. I seem to be having trouble finding time to read these days.

  4. Have read only one book you mention...A J Fikry. I liked it as well. I've read very little Stephen King although I did enjoy his recent detective trilogy (Mr. Mercedes, Finders Keepers, and End of Watch).

  5. Well no wonder you have no time to post! You're too busy reading.

    I'm reading forensic engineering reports...does that count? Sometimes it gets quite interesting!

  6. I just read one your Dr. M might find interesting if he's into Western History: "Blood and Thunder" by Hampton Sides. It's about Kit Carson and the war with the Navajos. And I'm reading an old one I found on my shelf: "Red Sky at Morning" by Richard Bradford, about a teenage Alabama boy growing up in New Mexico.

  7. I'm astounded by the number of books you've read. I do read, but mine tends to be non-fiction, and usually I'm dipping in and out. I laughed at your suggestion that King's book might be improved by fewer pages. There's nothing worse than a book where the author drones on and on to no purpose.


Thanks for stopping by - I'd love to hear what you have to say!

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