Friday, January 19, 2007

All the numbers

ALL THE NUMBERS by Judy Merrill Larsen (Reader's Circle, c2006, ISBN 978-0-7394-7284-2)is set in Madison, Wisconsin and at a lake house in Bainbridge, WI.
Ellen Banks has gone there with her two sons to visit her friends Anna and Sam for a week at the end of summer. While playing in the water, James, her youngest son is struck by a JetSki and killed.

The remainder of the book is the story of Ellen and a gamut of emotions. Revenge, vengeance, justice, redemption, absolution, you name it.

This was a 'box of Kleenex' book. Usually it's commercials that make me cry and I haven't cried at a book since I read PAY IT FORWARD (that book made me SOB!), but this one did it to me. I'm not sure if I'm becoming more emotional in my older age, if it's hormones or what but I'm not sure that I like it.

On the other hand, it has to be a testament to the author that can move someone to tears with just the power of their words. I imagine this book will be a favorite with book clubs.

The first sentence:
Ellen pulled into an empty parking space and turned off the car.

Island of bones

ISLAND OF BONES by PJ Parrish (Pinnacle, c2004, ISBN 0-7860-1605-1) is the fifth book in the Louis Kincaid series.

In this book, Louis Kincaid, a private investigator finds a baby's skull on the beach after a hurricane in Fort Myers/Sanibel. Days later, the body of a woman washes up in some mangroves with bullet holes in her and Louis feels the two instances are connected somehow. Then he is hired by Diane Woods to investigate her father who may be connected to the dead woman.
Working with local police officer Mel Landeta, Louis attempts to piece the puzzle together.

The first sentence:

I really liked this book, not only because it kept my interest, but because I learned so many things. I learned about lycanthropy, the old tales of Romulus and Remus and the spanish words for bones (huesos) and woods (el bosque).

Best of all, I still remember everything I read about.

Killer Dreams

After the last book, I had to read something I was almost guaranteed to like and usually, Iris Johansen doesn't disappoint although it's been a couple of years since I've read anything new by her.

In KILLER DREAMS (Bantam Books, c2006, ISBN 978-0-553-80334-0) Sophie Dunston works as a doctor specializing in sleep disorders and dreams. She is also after the bad guys who were responsible for stealing REM-4, a substance she designed to help battle night terrors, and used as a weapon to make an army of subserviant zombie-like killers. She has help from Jock, Royd and McDuff but while trying to foil the bad guys, she must also protect her son.

The book crosses the globe from Baltimore, MD - MacDuff's Run, Scotland - Charlotte, NC - Barbados - San Torrano - Atlanta, GA and although this is not an Eve Duncan book, it does have Jane McGuire and Joe Quinn with a mention of Eve Duncan.

First sentence:
"I told you this was a great place."

The keeper

THE KEEPER by Sarah Langan (Harper Torch, c2006, ISBN 0-060-87290-8)was the first book in a long time that I was unable to finish and not because it was a bad book; it just got a little too weird for me personally.

The book, set in Bedford, ME, is about a woman named Susan Marley who is basically the town outcast. When she dies, she comes back to wreak havoc on the townspeople who disparaged her through their waking dreams and it rains, all the time.

The first sentence:
They knew Susan Marley.

I got as far as page 183 and then skimmed to the end. This book really wasn't my cuppa but that's just me...

Sunday, January 14, 2007


Okay, I will have new book posts up shortly (I've read a couple) but I had to post this to remember it.

I am addicted to these things. Anytime somebody sends me one I do it, and this one hits the nail on the head. If you don't me personally, you do now!

Your Birthdate: September 19

You are resilient, and no doubt your resilience has already been tested.

You've had some difficult experiences in your life, but you are wise from them.

Having had to grow up quickly, you tend to discount the advice of others.

You tend to be a loner, having learned that the only person you can depend on is yourself.

Your strength: Well developed stability and confidence

Your weakness: Suspicion of others

Your power color: Eggplant

Your power symbol: Spade

Your power month: October

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Just for Fun

Your results:
You are Spider-Man

(BIG Suprise! I don't even get to be a GIRL superhero! Waaah!)

Green Lantern
Wonder Woman
The Flash
Iron Man
You are intelligent, witty,
a bit geeky and have great
power and responsibility.

Click here to take the "Which Superhero are you?" quiz...

Happy New Year as an Ill Wind blows

Well, I realize that I'm a few days late but is it ever really late when wishing someone good tidings for the next 361 days of their life? My new year has started out wonderfully, I've stuck so far to a couple of my new year's resolutions, and I'm looking forward to a new year of good reads and great first sentences.

My first book of the year was ILL WIND by Rachel Caine (ROC, c2003, ISBN 0-451-45952-0) and is it a doozy.

I'm not much of a fantasy reader so I wasn't sure how I'd like this but I was looking for something a little different to get the year started with. One of my resolutions is to read a wider variety of genres this year, so I didn't want to start it off with something in my comfort zone.

It begins:

By granting you the possession of one of the Association Djinn, the Wardens Association has recognized that you are among the finest in your area of specialty, whether you control Weather, Fire or Earth.

In this book, the first in a series, Joanne Baldwin is a Weather Warden, having the ability to control all things weather. When she is responsible for the death of another warden, she goes on the run to find Lewis, a more powerful warden, to help her.

This book is a cross-country romp taking the reader here and here and here, here and here, with Joanne at the wheel of her Mustang, a hottie Djinn named David and weather galore.

I'll be on the scout for the next books in this fun series and her vampire series looks pretty rockin' as well.


SAVED by Kate Morgenroth (Harper Torch, c2002, ISBN 0-06-109775-6) was the last book I read in 2006.

First sentence:
"If you want to hear a story about someone who really pulled some crazy shit, I should tell you about this fishing boat captain my father knew," Andy said.

In this book, Ellie Somers pilots for the Coast Guard in Sitka, Alaska. When a mission goes bad and someone dies, Ellie hands in her wings and feeling sorry for herself, heads to fabulous Las Vegas with Nicholas, a man she rescued just days before her failed flight, only to get dragged into something much darker.

This book has a likeable albeit strong female lead character and of course, it is, in part, set in one of my favorite places in the world.

This book was a great ending to a great year of fun reads!

Stay tuned for more first sentences by the authors and reading reviews by moi in two-thousand-and-seven.

Sharp Objects

SHARP OBJECTS by Gillian Flynn (Shaye Areheart Books, c2006, ISBN 978-0-307-34154-9) is a fabulous debut book and one of my favorites, if not my favorite, this year.

The writing is lyrical. The setting is a character. Wind Gap, MO (not a real town) is such a part of who makes Camille Preaker what she is, and the feelings that she has just being there, makes it a very real place.

In this story, Camille Preaker is sent home to Wind Gap to write up news articles for the newspaper (Chicago Daily Post) she works at. A young girl is murdered, her teeth removed, and then another murder occurs and this small town has a serial killer on its hands.

While in Wind Gap, Camille must face some tough demons from her own lifetime and not fall prey to something which could be much, much worse than the killings happening in present time.

First sentence:
My sweater was new, stinging red and ugly.

I gave this book 5 stars of 5 stars in my own personal reading rating system. The only other book to receive the same score was MARLEY & ME.

Out of 74 books read this year, these two scored the highest with me.

Read this one.