Wednesday, November 19, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: Dark Tort


Dark TortDark Tort by Diane Mott Davidson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Ms Davidson has once again charmed my husband and me with another cosy mystery. While there are recipes in the printed version, they are not included in the audio version.

This time, the victim is Goldy Bear's neighbor at a local Law Firm. Barbara Rosenblat does her usual good job as a narrator.

Do I think you should read or listen to this book? YES!!! While each book has a good mystery to follow with characters who are believable. The mysteries always different with realist townies...even the murderer is "normal" but then that's how murders generally are.

AND you don't have to read these books in order! So if one is on sale and it is not the next one in the series...buy the one on sale and enjoy yourself!

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BOOK REVIEW: Thankless in Death


Thankless in DeathThankless in Death by J.D. Robb
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Grand as usual but still wish it was more X than XXX rated! The mysteries are good enough with less...I know because I have started skipping some of the more expletive ones.

Am I the only one who feels this way?

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BOOK REVIEW: The Lost Wife



The Lost Wife by Alyson Richman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

As the Brits would say "It's BRILLIANT!" Alyson Richman is one hell of a writer to be able to switch back and forth between two equally engaging people who fall in love, get married, get separated, and, 60 years later, come back together. She shows you Prague before and after the Nazis take over, what might happen to people who "got out in time", and those who stayed...and how they could come back together.

It's all so believable! Ms Richman has made all the characters believable. While some of the Germans only appear briefly, most of us have watched enough movies and TV drama to see them as full fleshed out. And the narrators! George Guidall and Suzanne Toren are as near perfect as one could wish. This is one book that I am glad I purchased in audible format rather than paper.

I don't know why I've always had an interest in WWII in Europe rather than the Pacific, but I have. Many of books have been biographic. This one sounds like it was...the clarification will be in the epilog. It seems well researched.

If you like a love story...an insight into what one person might have experienced in the camps...or what a person who made it safely to America might have experienced...how likes history, you should purchase this novel and more to share with your friends and relations!

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Friday, November 14, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: Enchanted, Inc. (Enchanted, Inc., #1)



Enchanted, Inc. by Shanna Swendson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The cover caught my eye and then I listened to the snippet and read the summary and THEN I BOUGHT IT!

I needed something fun and this filled the bill!

Katy is from Texas, I'm from Texas. She has transplanted herself to New York City (I came back to Texas and stayed but I've been to NYC.) Katy "sees things" that no one else reacts to...like people wearing wings or a gargoyle that WINKS? at her. No one else seems to think these things abnormal; it must be normal for NYC.

Turns out, some rare people see the strange things she does but MOST DO NOT! And that is how she got away from the mean boss and onto working at Magic, Spells, and Illusions, Inc. And the fun really gets going! There is someone trying to sell a bad magic and he has to be stopped! She is real, smart, and has that sassy as a Texan gal can be.

I wish the narrator, Eva Wilhelm, had been able to give Katy and her Texan roommates a bit of the Texas accent but that is not why I rated her down. I gave her the rating because too many times I became aware of her over the story. She is not a bad narrator...I've listened to a couple of them (uck, cringe). She is not the best either.

This is a good starter book establishing who she is, how she got to MSI, what MIS is all about, why they need her level headiness, as well as her pitching arm. It also establishes not only the workings of MSI but the personalities of the workers. I won't go further there for fear of spoiling something for you. You gotta know they are a very interesting!

Now as a person who generally does not like books that rely on one reading them in order, if the second one proves the need for reading them in order, I think I will continue investing in the books when I need a fun read for a good laugh!

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Monday, November 10, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: 1st to Die


1st to Die by James Patterson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The members are Lindsay Boxer is a homicide inspector in the San Francisco Police Department, Claire Washburn is a medical examiner, Jill Bernhardt is an assistant D.A., and Cindy Thomas just started working the crime desk of the San Francisco Chronicle. They come together, these bright young women who are at the edge of breaking through the "glass ceiling", to solve they mystery of the brutal killings of newly wedded couples on their wedding nights.

"Working together, they track down the most terrifying and unexpected killer they have ever encountered-before a shocking conclusion in which everything they knew turns out to be devastatingly wrong."

It's the start of a good series from James Patterson whose words are well spoken by Suzanne Toren.

This is another book that I became curious about after watching the series on TV. I'm glad I did as this book at least is better than the series. Give it a go, you might discover the same thing.

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Saturday, November 8, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: The Silkworm


Cormoran and Galbraith (JK Rowling) are back! YEA! His leg is giving him more gip. This time he has a mystery to solve about a missing husband who has written a novel that has pissed off many people.

Robin Ellacott is back with her intended...he still doesn't like Cromoran which causes Robin to bend the truth or omit data that might make him more upset. She still wants to be her boss's assistant more than his secretary and indicates so by putting herself in situations to prove it...like her driving skills that shock Cormoran when she saves them from a nasty accident.

About this writer; his wife hired Cormoran. They have a child with developmental problems which may be why our PI continues to work the case even though he has no idea if he who will pay him if anyone. Again the author adds a cast of characters that are very colorful while still being plausible.

I love Ms. Rowling's writing! Not only are the characters clearly defined, so is the atmosphere around them...even when Cormoran finds a mutilated body that makes you want to cringe! When she is describing the weather, I am back on my one trip to wintering England.

Robert Glenister again does a brilliant job narrating the written words.

If you like a good mystery with a flawed PI in charge, you will really like this second edition of the series! Even if you are reading instead of listening to words.

BOOK REVIEW: Left to Die


Left To Die by Lisa Jackson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

They said: "In Left to Die, the Pinewood County Sheriff 's Department is on the trail of a cold-blooded killer who acts as a savior to women stranded during terrible mountain snowstorms before stripping them of their dignity and leaving them to die, a victim of the elements. But the killer's latest victim managed to escape, leading some to believe there may now be an impostor on the loose."

My thoughts:

One vicious murderer.

Two vicious murderers.

One conclusion.

One trailer into the next book in the series.

ARG! Ok, maybe I understand the carry over but I don't have to like it! Especially as the carry over story is the MAIN story of book! Maybe I am being a bit harsh here as I have a bias against writers who employ this tactic. The story/stories are good and draw you along but I do wonder how much repetition will be needed in the next book.

I had no problem with the narrator as he did not detract from the story (which is what a good narrator should do).

Will I buy the next book? I don't know. Part of me wants see how Ms. Jackson manages to catch up new readers without boring readers of the first book. Part of me wonders about the motivation of the murderer. But it boils down to how invested I am to use another Audible.com credit.

Would I recommend this book to others? Yes, to people who like serial books and always start with the first book. Yes, to people who like a good mystery. Yes, to people who don't want a lot of really graphic sex scenes detracting from the story!

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Saturday, October 25, 2014

The title and cover snagged me



I listened to the snippet on Audible.com hoping it would deter me. But no, because of Lorelei King's narration of Darynda Jones' words. Now I am doomed to another series because they left me wanting to know what happens to her and her vaporous boyfriend.

"Her" was Charley Davidson; PI and a not so "grim reaper". In this book, she had to help 3 dead lawyers solve their case so they could "pass over". The "vaporous boyfriend" was there when she was born and then again whenever her life had been in danger, as well as in her vivid dreams.

Charley's retired father was cop as was her uncle, Bob. She has been helping them since she was 5 with her ability to speak to the dead. I loved her mind, heart...oh, lots of things, especially her wit which carried me through the rough part.

Would I recommend this book? You bet your sweet bibby I would to anyone who likes good mysteries written with good humor! It was well worth my Audible.com credit!

5 stars

Monday, October 20, 2014

Off to stop some sick vampires


Jane Yellowrock, our shape shifting skinwalker, is off to help the vampire Master of Natchez, Mississippi, with only a partial idea of the problem he is having with rogue vampires. Per usual, rogue vamps will be destroyed in this fast paced story.

You may think this is a familiar plot line because it is but as per usual, Faith Hunter takes the basics and turns it on its ear! Example: these rogues are not as easily killed as have been previous ones. The addition of Khristine Hvam's narration only adds to the story's ebb and flow. I follow the series because I love Ms. Hunter's writing and that each book is complete so you don't have to read them in order. Then there is the looming question of how she is going to twist the formula to make each book new and refreshing. As you can tell by my stars, she's done it again! Give just one of them a try and you'll be hooked on her books!

5 out of 5 stars.

Traveling back in time to Persia


This was one of my Audible.com choices. Unfortunately, there is an oops in the recording that therefore messed up the download. The end of the two parts are cut off. It didn't bother me so much on Part 1 but was at a crucial moment in Part 2!  (GRRRR!) Naturally I called Audible.com immediately! They are going to fix it and then alert me, so I can get the rest of the story! The question is how long will it take them to fix it! You know how some of us are when we are so into a book that we just have to know, can't wait to know the rest of the story! I'm one of those! What do you do then? ORDER THE BOOK!

Publisher's Summary:

"In 17th-century Persia, a 14-year-old woman believes she will be married within the year. When her beloved father dies, she and her mother find themselves alone and without a dowry. With nowhere else to go, they are forced to sell the brilliant turquoise rug the young woman has woven to pay for their journey to Isfahan, where they will work as servants for her uncle, a rich rug designer in the court of the legendary Shah Abbas the Great.

Despite her lowly station, the young woman blossoms as a brilliant designer of carpets, a rarity in a craft dominated by men. But while her talent flourishes, her prospects for a happy marriage grow dim. Forced into a secret marriage to a wealthy man, the young woman finds herself faced with a daunting decision: forsake her own dignity, or risk everything she has in an effort to create a new life.
©2007 Anita Amirrezvani; (P)2007 Hachette Audio"

And that is where it cuts off! Decision time!

It should have taken just a bit over 13 hours to hear the entire story that is narrated by the rich voice of actress Shohreh Aghdashloo who is originally from Iran. Her voice add so much color to enjoyment of this book. I feel in love with her voice, accent, laugh, and intellect the first time I saw her on the Craig Ferguson show.

Maybe I need to expand a bit. When I read I hear the story in my head with my American accent. I've heard German, French, Irish, Scottish, Russian, Spanish, Chinesse, Janpanesse, and the variety we have in America, and India so sometime a bit of those accents rings in my ears. The voices of the middle eastern countries have not added their music to my ears enough to remember them.

One thing is learned quickly...the role of this woman in 17th century Pursia wasn't any better than that of women in Europe in the same socioeconomic level.

Anita Amirrezvani has not only told us the story of a gutsy young woman but bits about rug making from dye to design to finished product. She also gives us some short folk tales of the period.

I am giving you my review now because I cannot see the review changing much with reading the hard copy. It's been out for a while so you should be able to find it in most of your usual haunts. It's almost Halloween, so go haunting those places for this book in any format you like!

UPDATE:

I have now finished both the book and the recording. Sure enough, it was as wonderful as I expected! I loved all the characters in the book because of what they added to not only the understanding their motivation, but also the flavor of the peoples of the time whether good or bad. There was a richness to this book that makes me anxious to see what she comes up with next!

The conversation between the author and narrator at the end of the recording is most interesting!

Who should read this book? I would have gotten a lot out of this book about the age of 13 or 14 so young women, mothers and daughters, people who want to know a bit more about the rug making process and their makers, people who love myths and legends! This is definitely on my favorites for 2011!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Better read than....


Angels' Flight by Nalini Singh
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I liked the narration but got discombobulated when going from one story to another!

For someone who now buys more audio books than Kindle books, the above statement is a shocker!

FYI, I have other audio books by her that I enjoy...a lot!

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