Friday, February 23, 2007

Blown Away

On my return flight from Las Vegas, I started reading BLOWN AWAY by Shane Gericke (Pinnacle Books, c2006, ISBN 0-7860-1813-5) and was just that...blown away!

This has been my favorite book so far this year and I couldn't wait to finish it so I could blog about it!

It starts:
"911, where is your emergency?" Bertha Pruitt repeated.

Set in Naperville, Illinois, Emily Thompson works for the police department and attracts the attention of a crafty serial killer, one who loves to play cat and mouse. The clock is ticking in this taut and suspenseful, although sometimes graphic (but I'm okay with that) debut and her partners Marty Benedetti, Hercules Branch, Chief Kendall Cross, Annie Bates and she must race it to catch the bad guy before it strikes on the eight.

I really liked Emily and rooted for her throughout the book but more importantly I loved the premise of the story and got sucked right in to the whole plot. I thought the characters were developed just enough to understand and like or dislike them yet underdeveloped enough to want more which I'll be seeing in Gericke's upcoming book, CUT TO THE BONE, which is already on my to-be-read list.

Run, don't walk -- to get your hands on this book, curl up or kick back and let the games begin!

Speak no evil

On my way here, I read SPEAK NO EVIL by Allison Brennan (Ballantine Books, c2007, ISBN 978-0-345-49502-0).

Set in San Diego, California, this book begins a new trilogy by Brennan although Sheriff Nick Thomas from a previous book plays a key part in it.

It begins:
At the very beginning, she had seen his face and knew he would not let her live.

In this book, Carina Kincaid, an officer for the San Diego Police Department, is working a case of a serial killer and Sheriff Nick Thomas comes in from Montana to help out with a suspect.

The serial killer is particularly nasty and the book has a typical plot line for a romantic suspense type book but it was quick paced, held my attention for the flight and the downtime of my vacation and had a good story.

I really enjoy these books by Allison Brennan and will continue to read her.

Side Effects

Just before going on vacation I read SIDE EFFECTS by Amy Goldman Koss (Roaring Book Press, c2006, ISBN 1-59643-294-2), a book for young adults.

And again, like some of my more recent YA books, I enjoyed it.

Set mainly in Los Angeles at the Children's Hospital, Isabelle aka Izzy is a fifteen-year-old who wakes up one morning with swollen glands AGAIN, and is suddenly diagnosed with lymphoma.

The first sentence is:
The overhead light snapped on and my shoulder got one quick shake.

Now Izzy must deal, not only with being 15, but cancer and everyone around her who is changing because of her illness. Why do they get to change and act all weird when she's the one who's dying? That type of sarcasm is how Izzy deals but deal she does in this wonderful book that I would recommend to anyone faced with this type of issue.

I found the writing to be honest in the way I could only imagine a fifteen-year-old would react to something like this, as well as the family members and friends trying to shelter her from the reality of it. On top of it all, Izzy's spunk and determination is quite endearing.

Friday, February 9, 2007

How to flee a zombie

For Christmas, my dad bought me a copy of THE ZOMBIE SURVIVAL GUIDE: COMPLETE PROTECTION FROM THE LIVING DEAD by Max Brooks (Three Rivers Press, c2003, ISBN 1-4000-4962-8) because he knows me, all too well. This was my first read in February.

The book is cataloged 818, library speak for Humor, although it is written like any other type of survival guide might be written. The only difference is this one is how to survive a zombie attack.

First sentence:
The dead walk among us.

Including sections on the best places to run to, weapons and combat techniques, on the defense and on the attack, how to survive if overrun by zombies and a longish section of recorded attacks, the book is fun if you can take it tongue-in-cheek.

But if you are a believer of zombies (like I am), it may be the most important book you'll ever read.

Check this out, just for fun.

12 Again

12 AGAIN by Sue Corbett (Dutton's Children's Books, c2002, ISBN 0-525-46899-4) came across my desk and just looked like something I would enjoy.

Set in Farmingdale, New York, the family McBride including Bernadette, Gerald, Patrick, Neil and Kevin are in for a surprise. On her 40th birthday, feeling bad about getting old, Bernadette makes a wish and wakes up the next morning at age 12.

Communicating with her same-age son by email brings to light some things, one of which is the old house she grew up in has mystical features and she will need her son's help to pull her back into the present world.

This was a cute YA book with a little magic, a little mystery and the remembrance of what 12 was like. Be careful what you wish for!

The first sentence:
Patrick's mother vanished on Labor Day, the day before her birthday, the day before he started seventh grade.

I think fans of the movies 13 GOING ON 30 or 50 FIRST DATES would like this book.

The First Cut

THE FIRST CUT by Dianne Emley (Ballantine Books, c2006, ISBN 0-345-48617-X)was an exciting and well-written debut novel.

Set in Pasadena, CA, Nan Vining is an officer with the Pasadena PD, returning after a year's absence after a brutal attack. Frankie Lynde, a vice cop from LA is killed and dumped in their backyard. Now, Nan and Jim must solve the case while Nan wrestles with her own demons.

The book begins:
No one knew her here.

The introduction of the character of T.B. Mann (aka the bad man) and the ending of the book (although one door closes, another remains open)leads me to believe this will be either a series or have a sequel.

Either way, I will be looking for the next book.

Plum Lovin'

PLUM LOVIN' by Janet Evanovich (St Martin's Press, c2007, ISBN 0-312-30634-2) is a holiday book featuring Stephanie Plum and company in the Burg.

This book has Stephanie and Diesel, and the regular cast of characters i.e. Lula, Grandma Mazur, Bob the dog, and the rest of Steph's immediate family. No Joe; no Ranger.

In this book, Stephanie is trying to find Annie Hart and Diesel has her. If she helps Diesel play matchmaker to some of Annie's worst clients, he will turn Annie over to Stephanie. Meanwhile, other forces are at work and causing no good. Will Stephanie get her skip?

Like the other holiday book, this one is not the most memorable but it was a fun, easy read to tide me over until #13 becomes a reality. I'm a Ranger Babe so the whole Diesel did nothing for me either, but eh? What are you going to do? I'm going to read every one of these, no matter what, so...

The first sentence:
Men are like shoes.