Tag: #books

“The Bookworm” by Mitch Silver

“The Bookworm” by Mitch Silver

A conspiracy between the American president and the Russian government? This story reads like it just came off the front pages. Dr. Larissa Klimt is a Russian historian who spends her time teaching and researching her new book. On an otherwise ordinary day, a bag full of old Dictaphone cartridges is given to her along with a mysterious message. Before she knows what’s happening, she finds herself trying to unravel a decades old mystery that has a tremendous impact on current events. Suddenly, her life is in danger and Larissa doesn’t know who to trust.

Hold on to your seats, readers, because this is a thrill ride of a story, made even more exciting because it’s all so current and feels very real. I really enjoyed the twists and turns in this one. I also really liked the character of Dr. Larissa Klimt. She’s not exactly the stereotypical history professor, but then again, she kinda is. In any case, she’s as complex as the story she is telling. And then there’s the ex-husband who I just loved to hate, but sometimes he is a bit charming, and he’s cute. I believe this is a stand-alone novel, but I wouldn’t be sad to see more books with these characters as they really grew on me by the end. Overall, I really enjoyed this one. It will definitely satisfy the appetite of the conspiracy theorists out there, and it’s a good mystery too.

This book is expected to publish on Feb. 6, 2018 in the US and Mar. 6, 2018 in the UK, and is now available for pre-order, see the links below.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  4-star-rating 4 stars!!

Happy Reading!

To order on Amazon US click here.

To order on Amazon UK click here.

To view on Goodreads click here.

A copy of this book was provided by NetGalley and Pegasus Books in exchange for an honest review.

 

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“Two Girls Down” by Louisa Luna

“Two Girls Down” by Louisa Luna

Alice Vega finds missing people. Max Caplan is a former cop turned private detective in a small Pennsylvania town. When two young girls go missing Vega gets a call from the family and quickly finds herself on the wrong side of the local police. She teams up with Caplan to track down the missing girls but the search is not without danger. What’s the connection between the girls, a local ballet studio, and the drug trade?

This is an edge-of-your-seat read. The deeper you get into the story, the closer you get to edge of your seat. The author has created a complex story that at first seems to make no sense but comes together beautifully in the end. Alice Vega is a hard-edged, bad-ass kind of female character but the more you get to know her the more apparent it becomes that she is much more complex that she at first appears. Max Caplan, when we first meet him, seems very defeated. It appears that his only reason for living is his precocious teenage daughter Nell. But maybe he just needs someone to reignite his spark. Both Caplan and Vega really grew on me as the story developed. Nell is a real treat in the story. She doesn’t play a huge part but when she does show up she adds an element of fun and liveliness to the otherwise rather dark story. Finally, I thought the interplay between the police and the PI’s was unique and added a level of tension to the story that enhanced the drama. Overall, I really enjoyed this story and I would highly recommend it, especially if you feeling the need for some thrills.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  4-5-star-rating 4.5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

To purchase on Amazon US, click here.

To purchase on Amazon UK, click here.

To view on Goodreads, click here.

Thank you to NetGalley and Doubleday Books for providing a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

“The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins

“The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkins

Now I know why this book got so much attention. I was nearly at the end before I even began to suspect the person who turned out to be the killer. The beginning reminded me of “4:50 From Paddington” by Agatha Christie in that the first character we meet is Rachel who is watching a particular couple in their house next to the railroad tracks as she passes by every day. Then one day the wife disappears and Rachel thinks she has knowledge that may be critical to the investigation. But Rachel is a drunk and an “unreliable witness”, so she goes directly to the husband. What Rachel doesn’t know is that she is directly involved in the disappearance. Rachel’s life is already spiraling out of control because of her drinking, but will this investigation tip her over the edge? Or will she even survive?

I loved the way this book was structured in that it moves back and forth from Rachel telling the story, to Megan, the victim, detailing the days and weeks before her disappearance. I think this kind of structure heightens the suspense in a thriller and allows the reader to see the events from more than one angle, and there is always more than one angle in a mystery. That being said I didn’t really like either of them, at least at first. Rachel comes off as pathetic and whiny at the beginning, but her persistence in the matter gave her more depth as the story moves along and I appreciated the attempts she was making, in the midst of all the drama, to pull her life back together. Megan on the other hand seemed to be spinning out of control, bored with her life and her marriage. The twists and turns in this story will keep you guessing till the end. If, like me, you didn’t read this one when it first came out, you should definitely pick it up now.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  4-5-star-rating 4.5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

Amazon US  |   Amazon UK   |   Goodreads   |   Barnes & Noble   |   Amazon Canada

“Private” by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro – Audiobook

“Private” by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro – Audiobook

Narrated by Peter Hermann

Jack Morgan is a former military helicopter pilot, the son of a convict, the brother of an evil twin, and head of Private Investigations. Private is a top-notch investigative agency, catering to the rich and famous. Jack has a world-class support team which includes Del Rio, Justine, Sci, and others. Jack is hired to find out who killed the wife of his long-time friend, this death hits him hard because he had introduced them. At the same time, his uncle hires him to investigate possible game-fixing within the NFL. As if these two investigations aren’t enough, Justine is hot on the trail of what appears to be a team of serial killers who are stalking high school girls. This is the first book in the “Private” series.

Jack is a man who is haunted by his past but nevertheless I found that I liked him a lot. He’s terrible with relationships but he keeps trying and seems to learn from his mistakes. Justine is great as the strong, female character and her not so friendly relationship with Nora, the cop, is fun to watch. Tracking three separate storylines in one book can be challenging but in this case I found that it all flowed together nicely, with smooth transitions from one investigation to the next. Since I listened to the audiobook version of this story the narration quality was very important. I think the narrator did a good job but I did find my mind wandering a little bit at times. Overall, this is another good thriller from James Patterson. I enjoyed the story and characters.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  3-5-star-rating  3.5 stars!

Happy Reading!

To order from Amazon US, click here.

To order from Amazon UK, click here.

To view on Goodreads, click here.

“The Broken Girls” by Simone St. James

“The Broken Girls” by Simone St. James

This book totally creeped me out! But in a delightful, beguiling way. The Amazon description of this story mentions that the school involved is rumored to be haunted; that is an understatement. Idlewild Hall is a school for girls that no one wants, and in 1950 one of them mysteriously disappears. In 1994 a young woman, daughter of a local celebrity, is found murdered on the playing field of the now abandoned school. In 2014, Fiona, that young woman’s sister, is now a journalist and after hearing that the school is to be restored, she can’t help but start her own investigation into the circumstances of her sister’s murder. As the restoration begins, a body is found in an old well on the property and Fiona now finds herself investigating two deaths. Fiona soon finds herself deep in the mystery of Idlewild Hall, but will she come out of it alive?

If you like paranormal or thrillers, you must read this book. I was so drawn into this story that I completely tuned out everything else. I love a book that can do that. The storyline is complex and twisty but it all flows really well and comes together brilliantly at the end. Fiona is a great character who’s a bit lost at the beginning but finds her way while working through her sister’s death. Her hunky boyfriend adds some romance and angst to the story, and has issues of his own to work through, but I enjoyed the relationship and the way he treated Fiona. There are a host of strong female characters woven into the story. The author has constructed the story so that it shifts back and forth between events in 1950 and the investigation in 2014 which in this case adds to the mystery. It seemed like every time Fiona was about to discover something the story would shift to 1950 and vice versa, so there is a constant sense of anticipation. Simone St. James is definitely going on my “I-want-more-from-this-author” list. You may live to regret it if you pass this one up!

Alinefromabook’s rating:  5-star-rating 5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

To order from Amazon US, click here.

To view on Goodreads, click here.

“Goat Castle” by Karen L. Cox

“Goat Castle” by Karen L. Cox

A True Story of Murder, Race, and the Gothic South

The Gothic South, a place of romance and mystery, and Natchez, Mississippi is the epitome of the era. Residents are proud of their heritage and their beautiful houses that draw tourists from all over the country in the 1920’s and 30’s. But in 1932 an act of revenge plunges the town into the scandal of the decade, and leaves two people dead and an innocent black woman in prison, while the real perpetrators are free to profit from their notoriety.

This is a fascinating story and an excellent example of the Jim Crow laws of the era in action. I really appreciated the amount of background that the author gives the reader so that you really get a feel for why circumstances worked out the way they did. The reader gets the history of each of the main characters and a timeline that leads up to the events in 1932. The relationships between those involved are explored in order to understand how the actions of that fateful night came to happen. The Jim Crow era is a period of history that I think most Americans outside of the South know little about and probably because it is so unpleasant. But the author really expanded my knowledge with her descriptions of how the laws impacted both blacks and whites at the time. If you want a glimpse behind the veil of the Gothic South then take a look at this book. Well-written, well-organized and eye-opening.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  4-5-star-rating 4.5 stars!

Happy Reading!

To purchase on Amazon US, click here.

To purchase on Amazon UK, click here.

To view on Goodreads, click here.

“The Intercept” by Dick Wolf

“The Intercept” by Dick Wolf

This is the first book in the Jeremy Fisk series and the author’s debut in fiction. The story is a post 9/11 thriller. Jeremy Fisk works in the Intel division of the NYPD. The division develops its own intelligence, independent of the FBI and CIA, but the various agencies also work together when needed. A group of passengers on an airline take down a terrorist who tries to take down the cockpit during a flight from Europe to New York. The 6 passengers become instant heroes in the press. Fisk’s partner Krina Gersten is assigned to the security detail as the passengers make the rounds of the morning shows and various public events, the culmination being the dedication of the new World Trade Center on July 4th. Fisk is busy investigating the hijacker and his gut tells him there’s more to this event than meets the eye. As the intelligence comes in, Fisk must put the clues together in time to avert another disaster.

This is a thriller with a well-crafted story to tell that explores our tendency to stereotype and jump to conclusions. I really liked Jeremy Fisk. He is a determined investigator who thinks outside the box when necessary. There is plenty of action and the story moves along at a brisk pace. I found the scenario to be believable and the action compelling. I would recommend this book for thrill or conspiracy lovers.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4 stars!!

Happy Reading!

To purchase on Amazon US, click here.

To purchase on Amazon UK, click here.

To view on Goodreads, click here.

“Accomplished in Murder” by Dara England

“Accomplished in Murder” by Dara England

This is a novelette and the first in the Accomplished Mysteries series. At 55 pages this is a short but interesting little murder mystery. Drucilla Winterbourne travels to Cornwall to visit her recently married friend at Blackridge House. When she arrives she is told that her friend has just died. She spends the next few days unraveling the mystery of her death.

Because of the length there’s not much room for character development, but nevertheless, I liked Drucilla. She’s got spunk and an inquisitive mind. The plot is an interesting one but the story plays out a little too quickly. That being said if you’re looking for something to fill an hour this story is not bad.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  ⭐️⭐️⭐️  3 stars!

Happy Reading!

To purchase from Amazon US, click here.

To purchase from Amazon UK, click here.

To view on Goodreads, click here.

“A Trace of Copper” by Anne Renwick

“A Trace of Copper” by Anne Renwick

Another journey into the steampunk world and this little book does not disappoint. I don’t read much in this genre but I cannot pass up an Anne Renwick story. This one is book 2 in the Elemental Web Tale series and at a little over 100 pages, is perfect if your short on time. The story is set in Wales and tells the story of Dr. Piyali Mukherji, an Indian woman who is a medical doctor and a Queen’s Agent, and Evan Tredegar, a pharmacist to whom she was once engaged. When a young lady develops an infection which is turning her skin blue, Dr. Piyali is sent to investigate. When she arrives in the Welsh village she finds herself in the presence of Evan whom she hasn’t seen in 4 years. Now they must find a cure and sort out their fractured relationship.

I really enjoyed these two and the side characters who are woven into the story. As with her other stories, the author has created characters with depth and humanity, and in some cases a little more than a touch of evil. I also enjoyed the village she created for the story. I was really drawn into the setting and the time period. As usual, there are some good science lessons incorporated also which lend an intellectual component. Great characters, a well-developed story line, and a charming setting all make for a story I highly recommend.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  4-5-star-rating 4.5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

To purchase on Amazon US click here.

To purchase on Amazon UK click here.

To view on Goodreads click here.

Thank you to the author for providing a copy in exchange for an honest review.

“Half Past” by Victoria Helen Stone

“Half Past” by Victoria Helen Stone

What happens if you wake up one day and discover that you are not who you think you are? This is what happens to Hannah Smith and the story “Half Past” follows her on a very unexpected journey. Hannah has recently taken over, from her older sisters, the role of caregiver for their mother who is suffering from dementia. When she questions the results of a simple blood test on her mother’s medical records her world is turned upside down. Hannah discovers that the woman who raised her is not her biological mother. With her father dead and her mother rarely having lucid moments, it’s up to Hannah to discover for herself how she came to be Hannah Smith. Her journey takes her to California where she discovers her twisted history and herself.

This book has all of my favorite things. A main character who is complicated and not always very charming. I setting in the redwoods of California and beautiful descriptions of the location. A mystery that does not have an obvious solution. Hippies and communes, and a personal psychological journey. The result is that I devoured this story. In my book, this is a hit and I highly recommend it.

Alinefromabook’s rating:  5-star-rating 5 stars!!

Happy Reading!

To purchase on Amazon US click here.

To purchase on Amazon UK click here.

To view on Goodreads click here.

Thank you to NetGalley and Lake Union Publishing for providing a copy in exchange for an honest review.