Good Sunday morning! It’s a beautiful day in New England, and I hope the same is true wherever you are.
This week’s book was Cliff Walk by Bruce DeSilva. I recommended a different book of his a couple of weeks ago and enjoyed it so much that I immediately decided to read Cliff Walk. And okay, I liked it well enough that I just downloaded another one, Rogue Island. Of course, I’m reading them completely out-of-order, but what else is new? Let’s just say Bruce has a new fan.
Anyway, this book sees main character Liam Mulligan, Rhode Island newspaper journalist and solver-of-crimes, looking into some really heavy, bothersome topics. When it seems that the owner of a number of strip joints goes missing, ostensibly murdered, Liam is directed to look into it. The path leads him to some seedy people and unsavory topics–with ties to missing kids–and he wonders if the strip joint kingpin also had something to do with child pornography. Add to the mess some children’s body parts found in a rural part of the state, and you’ve got yourself a whole lot of bad guys who need to be stopped.
This book had some heavy topics, but in my opinion it wasn’t too graphic or drawn out enough to wreck the story. I wouldn’t say it’s a “light read” but it definitely makes you thankful for the good guys out on the streets who are willing to make our world a better place. ‘Til next week, happy reading! :-)
Posted in Book Recommendations | Tagged Bruce DeSilva, Cliff Walk, Liam Mulligan, M M Silva, Rhode Island, The Stairwell, Two Out of Three | Leave a Comment »
Good warm Sunday morning! I hope you have some fun plans for the day.
This week’s read was The Killing Hour by Lisa Gardner. It’s about a killer who abducts young women in pairs, in the hottest of hot summers, and he murders the first woman and leaves the second one alive, in less-than-desirable circumstances. The first woman always has clues on her person as to the second’s location, so it’s a game that the killer plays with the authorities, to see if they can find the second victim before nature takes its course. When a dead woman’s body is dumped smack in the middle of the FBI training grounds, it’s obvious that heads are going to roll, and agent-in-training Kimberly Quincy is a pistol of a main character who gets intertwined in the case after finding the body and then can’t let it go for personal reasons. She knows a victim is out there somewhere, depending on her to get inside the killer’s mind, and the clock is ticking as the heat intensifies.
Gardner’s books are all very good, and this one didn’t disappoint. It’s an easy, fast read that will keep you wondering until the end, and it’s got just a hint of romance but not enough to make you hurl. This is a perfect summer read for the beach or outside under a tree. ‘Til next week, happy reading! :-)
Posted in Book Recommendations | Tagged Kimberly Quincy, Lisa Gardner, M M Silva, The Killing Hour, The Stairwell, Two Out of Three | Leave a Comment »
Good Sunday morning! I hope the sun is shining and the birds are chirping wherever you are today.
I finished listening to a GREAT book this week and am excited about recommending it to you. The name is Providence Rag, by Bruce DeSilva. When I read the excerpt, it didn’t completely grab me, but the author is local, so I thought I’d give it a shot. It was thought-provoking, fast-paced, sarcastic and funny. Needless to say, woo-hoo!
The premise of the book is based on a real case, and it has to do with an antiquated law in the state of Rhode Island. In this fictional story, a young teen commits five horrific murders and is sent to prison; however, the law in RI says that any incarcerated juvenile–regardless of the crime–must be released at age twenty-one. (!) Big yikes to that. Fast forward many years later, and the man is still in jail, way past the age of twenty-one. A do-gooder at a dying newspaper in Rhode Island starts sniffing around and realizes that the killer is still locked up because of trumped-up charges from inside the prison, i.e. attacking a guard and drugs inside his cell. So, by law, it would seem that justice isn’t being served because they’re keeping him under false pretenses. But if justice is served, then the murderer will be set free, and everyone knows he’ll kill again. Holy conundrum.
The two best things about this book is the main character, Liam Mulligan, who’s smart, sarcastic, and a Yankees baseball hater. He helps break the case when the teen is initially found guilty and gets involved again when it seems the man will be released. The second wonderful thing about this books is all the local references. If you’re from Rhode Island or Massachusetts, you’ll recognize a lot of the local haunts, restaurants, street names, things like that. If you’re not from that area, don’t sweat it; it’s still a fun read and will keep you entertained until the end. ‘Til next week, happy reading! :-)
Posted in Book Recommendations | Tagged Bruce DeSilva, Liam Mulligan, M M Silva, Providence, Providence Rag, The Stairwell, Two Out of Three | Leave a Comment »
Good Sunday morning! I hope this finds you well.
So this week’s “recommendation” is Missing You, by Harlan Coben. I’ve always liked his books and thought this one would be another fast, great read. But the reason I wrote “recommendation” with the quotes is because it’s not a typical Coben book; if you’re also a fan, it’s not his usual style.
Two alerts: #1) I don’t love his writing from a female perspective. The first couple chapters start with two girlfriends at a bar, one who’s signed the other up for a dating website (which becomes relevant later in the story). The banter between the ladies made me feel like I was reading some average-at-best chick lit, and I don’t read chick lit. It makes my hair hurt. The supposedly-witty-female blather did go away by the third chapter, so I kept reading. If it hadn’t, I would have ditched the book. To be fair, I listened to the book, rather than read it, so maybe the narrator just made me a little nuts in that section. Still. #2) The story gets a bit gruesome in some parts, and that isn’t vintage Coben, either. It wasn’t page after page, but there were a couple of gory sections.
That said…if someone said to me, “Say yes or no. Should I read it or not?” I would answer yes. It’s a very good plot, with Coben tying three seemingly unrelated issues together: the dating website, a missing woman, and the death of the main character’s father a couple of decades prior. There’s a lot of investigative work in the story, bringing together many loose ends and marrying up the past with the present. And I was completely shocked when the father’s killer was finally revealed at the end and tip my hat to the author for that one. Well played.
This probably seems like a half-hearted recommendation, but it’s not. I just felt compelled to do those disclaimers, and I’ve never played “critic” because who the heck am I? It’s a solid read, and I wouldn’t say it’s fast-paced, but it’s got good momentum throughout the book. And if you do give it a shot, I’d love to see some comments on the blog with your thoughts. ‘Til next week, happy reading! :-)
Posted in Book Recommendations | Tagged Harlan Coben, M M Silva, Missing You, The Stairwell, Two Out of Three | Leave a Comment »
Happy first day of June! I hope this finds you well. May was a really tough month for me, so due to my absence from the blog, I’ve got two great suggestions for you this week. They’re both by John Sandford—his Lucas Davenport series—and are real page-turners.
The first book is Field of Prey, and the title is pretty telling. Yeesh. In this mystery, a couple of teenagers are out in a field in rural Minnesota (doing what teenagers do) and come across a very grisly discovery that puts Lucas and his team on a manhunt before another victim can be added to the killer’s list. What I admire so much about Sandford’s writing is that there never seems to be a lull; there’s never a boring spot where you think “C’mon, c’mon, get to the point.” This book is a super-fast read that’s got some great twists and turns. *Just a side note: there’s a pretty tough few scenes with a female officer toward the end of the book. It’s not overly graphic, but it’s bothersome, so I just wanted to give you a heads-up on that.*
The second book is Silken Prey, and while I really liked both books, I enjoyed this one a little more. This story involves politicians up to dirty tricks in the lovely state of Minnesota, ranging from planting child pornography on a competitor’s computer to murder. In this book, Lucas is personally asked by the governor to get to the bottom of the mayhem, and it’s great to follow the thread as Lucas unwinds all the chaos to determine who was behind what, when they knew what, how they knew what, why they did what they did, etc. This story had some playful aspects to it that were fun, and there’s one character who should have had-it-coming that apparently got away with murder, or at least accessory to murder. Argh! Maybe we’ll see that character in a future book; I sure hope so because we readers need to see justice served, ya’ know?
I hope you give both of these Sandford books a try; they’ll be great reads on a back deck or at the beach/pool during this nice weather. ‘Til next week, happy reading! :-)
Posted in Book Recommendations | Tagged Field of Prey, John Sandford, Lucas Davenport, M M Silva, Minnesota, Silken Prey, The Stairwell, Two Out of Three | Leave a Comment »
Good Sunday morning! I hope the sun is shining wherever you are.
Is it weird that I’m recommending a mystery titled Mystery this week? Anyway. The book is by best-selling author Jonathan Kellerman, and it’s #26 in the Alex Delaware series. (You definitely don’t need to read them in order, but they are all good.) I used to read Kellerman a lot and was glad to get re-acquainted with his characters.
In this book. super-psychologist Alex and his love interest, Robin, are out to dinner one evening when they notice a lovely young woman sitting alone at the bar, anxiously checking her diamond-encrusted watch every few minutes. The next day, Alex’s best friend (and police detective) Milo Sturgis is discussing a homicide, and it turns out to be no other than the lady Alex and Robin had seen the previous night. After recalling an angry-bodyguard-type outside of the restaurant, as well as some odd actions by the woman at the bar, Alex can’t help but get involved to help solve her murder.
Mystery is an engaging, fast-paced book with lots of moving parts that Kellerman ties together nicely at the end. It comes in at under 300 pages, so it’s an easy weekend read or something to dive into at the beach, assuming summer ever arrives. ‘Til next week, happy reading! :-)
Posted in Book Recommendations | Tagged Alex Delaware, Jonathan Kellerman, Los Angeles, M M Silva, Mystery, The Stairwell, Two Out of Three | Leave a Comment »
Good Sunday morning! I hope the Easter Bunny is gracing your life with chocolates, ham, and good fellowship today. *Not listed in order of importance, obviously.*
I was driving along Route 135 in Massachusetts this past Friday, which is part of the Boston Marathon route, and it was one day out of a million that I didn’t mind being backed up in traffic. There were American flags on the telephone poles; there were tents set up in front of several of the lovely colonial homes; there were little signs every few hundred feet that read ‘Marathon Route’ making me realize I was driving on a road a bit more special than others; one of the buildings in quaint, downtown Hopkington had a massive bright banner on it that proclaimed ‘Welcome Runners’ and I couldn’t help but get swallowed up by the electric feeling that permeated the air. A lump formed in my throat as memories from a year ago–still so vivid and fresh–flashed through my mind, but my best recollection was the feeling of pride I had about how the city of Boston responded to those tragic events. I can’t wait to see how the city, the state, the world, responds this year, and I can promise you this–it’s going to be BIG and it’s going to be spectacular. To paraphrase Big Papi, “This is our bleeping city!” And tomorrow the world is going to see Boston bounce back better than ever.
Posted in Waxing Philosophic | Tagged Boston, Boston Marathon, Boston Marathon Route, Boston Strong, Hopkington | Leave a Comment »