March 13, 2017

February 2017 Reads

Feb 6 Go-Between Lisa Brackmann
7 Orphan X Gregg Hurwitz
8 The Prisoner Alex Berenson
9 Salt Houses Hala Alyan
10 Lola Melissa Scrivner Love
11 No Easy Target Iris Johansen

I'm going to quote a review, about Go-Between, I can't say it better! "Terrific...This might be the best “drug” book since Robert Stone’s brilliant Dog Soldiers or Don Winslow’s superb “Cartel” series. Brackmann’s mastery of the material rivals either of those and Go-Between establishes her as a force to be reckoned within the crime genre." —Providence Journal

OK, another quote, “This isn't simply Hurwitz's 'best thriller yet' or 'a terrific new thriller'-Orphan X is an order-of-magnitude leap into stardom. It's the most exciting thriller I've read since The Bourne Identity. Fans of Jack Reacher, Mitch Rapp, and Jason Bourne will LOVE Evan Smoak, and the deadly, secret world of the Orphan Program. A new thriller superstar is born!” —Robert Crais  I mostly agree with this quote, except the Jack Reacher part; I got so bored with Lee Childs' character I have to pass on any comparison.

I love John Wells.  The Prisoner by Alex Berenson is the latest Wells installment.  Berenson never lets Wells get stale. “The John Wells series never gets old ... Berenson is a marvel, purely and simply."—  I don't mind using quotes from others and this one is spot on.  If you haven't read Berenson, start with The Faithful Spy, and you'll fall in love, too.

Salt Houses will probably be one of my favorite books this year.  Hala Alyan's debut novel is lyrical.  It's the story of the women of a Muslim family thru the upheavals of the Six-Day War of 1967 and Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait in 1990, and their day to day life in between.  The story and the writing are fabulous.  It'll be published on May 2, 2017.

Lola by Melissa Scrivner Love marks the debut of a hugely exciting new thriller writer, and of a singular, magnificent character unlike anyone else in fiction. It's an astonishing debut crime thriller about an unforgettable woman who combines the genius and ferocity of Lisbeth Salander with the ruthless ambition of Walter White.  Love takes plenty of geographical liberties, but this is fiction and unless you're a local you wouldn't know.  Great read.

No Easy Target is a fast-paced thriller and a good read.

What are you reading?

January 2017 Reads

Get it?  Loves Books and Tea!

Jan 1 The Second Girl David Swinson
2 The Original Ginny Moon Benjamin Ludwig
3 Blessed Are Those Who Thirst Anne Holt
4 Behind Her Eyes Sarah Pinborough
5 The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto Mitch Albom

Better late than never!  January was a great month for reading.  Not a turkey in the batch.

I loved The Second Girl by Swinson.  Who wouldn't love a retired detective with a taste for the forbidden? "Like Dennis Lehane and Richard Price, David Swinson gives us a gritty urban crime novel populated with morally complex, utterly believable characters. Swinson knows how to build suspense, and he has a great ear for the patois of the streets, but it is detective Frank Marr's tightrope walk between his noble and darker impulses that makes The Second Girl such a rewarding read from start to finish."—Ron Rash

One of my reading vices is Scandinavian crime novels.  Anne Holt is a master; if you haven't read her I really recommend her writing.  Blessed are Those Who Thirst was great.

Did you know that Mitch Albom is a songwriter and musician, in addition to being a best-selling author?  The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto combines Albom's love of music with his great writing,  I loved this tale and I bet you will, too!
What are you reading?

January 4, 2017

December 2016 Reads

Dec 72 Hag Seed Margaret Atwood
73 Livia Lone Barry Eisler
74 Lily and the Octopus Steven Rowley
75 Escape Clause John Sandford
76 The Travelers Chris Pavone
77 The Lion's Mouth Anne Holt
78 Beneath The Skin Johathan Maberry

Happy New Year! December was another great month of reading; it might have been the best of 2016! The past two years I've read just 78 books, a lot less than has been my normal 100 to 150 books a year. This may be my new normal, but I'll see what 2017 holds.

I really enjoyed Hag Seed by Margaret Atwood. It's a retelling of The Tempest. I have to admit that I haven't read Shakespeare but I love Atwood's' writing. I found out after reading Hag Seed that this is part of the Hogarth Shakespeare Series being published by Penguin/Random House. I think I'll look into the other titles.

Livia Lone by Barry Eisler is outstanding. Livia is a departure from Eisler's John Rain series, which I really recommend. This story takes you on an emotional ride, with child trafficking through to vigilante revenge on rapists. This is an edgy thriller that keeps you engrossed until the last page.

Lily and the Octopus is great, especially if you like to laugh and cry! It’s both beautifully written, and humorous. Anyone who has loved and lost a dog will appreciate the story and Rowley's writing.

Here I go, again, recommending a John Sandford novel. Escape Clause is his latest with my favorite character, Virgil Flowers. "The exceptional new thriller from the writer whose books are “pure reading pleasure”" (Booklist).

The Travelers by Chris Pavone is an awesome read. It's got layers and plot twist to keep you guessing what's next. It's the kind of thriller that's hard to put down and I loved it. Dreamworks have acquired the movie rights, so get the book and get prepared!

I love reading Scandinavian mystery authors; Anne Holt has been called the “godmother of modern Norwegian crime” by Jo Nesbø, another of my favorite authors. The Lion's Mouth certainly took me on an interesting ride. The Prime Minister has been found dead in her office and Hanne Wilhelmsen is on the case. The book was originally published in 1997, I glad it was finally translated so we all can read it. It'll leave you guessing until the very last page.

And my final read for 2016, was Beneath The Skin by Jonathan Maberry. Sam Hunter is a PI in the big bad city. Sam is also a werewolf. Sam is a benandanti, an ancient race of werewolves who fight evil. Beneath The Skin is told as a series of "case files", which makes sense. A PI works cases for clients, like any freelancer taking on odd jobs. Maberry is a good writer and Sam Hunter is a great character.

What are you reading?