I love Cara Elliott's Circle of Sin series. The heroines aren't the usual helpless, lost women looking for a wealthy and powerful lord to save them fr...moreI love Cara Elliott's Circle of Sin series. The heroines aren't the usual helpless, lost women looking for a wealthy and powerful lord to save them from their circumstances. Instead, the members of the Circle of Sin are well educated, unconventional, and deeply interested in learning. These women have interests that go well beyond fashion, men, and children. Each woman has a different area of expertise and the heroine of To Surrender To A Rogue is the archeologist Lady Alessandra della Giamatti. Lady Alessandra played a role in Elliott's earlier novel To Sin With A Scoundrel (Circle of Sin Trilogy), where she had clashed with the dashing Lord James Pierson ("Black Jack").
The heroes in Cara Elliott's novels just as fun and satisfying. They're smart, successful, and they're not threatened by the unconventional. Elliott creates just a romantic hero that I can't help but fall for! Deep sense of honor, kind, funny, athletic, protective, generous, and always strikingly attractive!
In To Surrender To A Rogue, Alessandra and her daughter have been forced to leave Italy for England. As they adjust to their new circumstances, Alessandra agrees to participate in a prestigious and exciting archeological dig. Both the English and the Italian delegation defer to her expertise in planning and the actual excavation. The dig brings many surprises -- both pleasant and unwelcome. Black Jack is a bit of both -- the interaction between Jack and Alessandra is great fun. The banter, the uncertainty and their yield to their mutual attraction is well done and kept me thoroughly entertained. Cara Elliott has a deft touch for historical romance -- she mixes just the right amount of intrigue, uncertainty, and foreshadowing.
If you enjoy historical romance novels with spirited heroines, twisty plots, and constant banter, grab To Surrender To A Rogue! It's a fun, romantic read and a perfect summer escape! My mother stayed up all night reading it -- and then I did too!
ISBN-10: 0446541311 - Mass Market Paperback Publisher: Forever (June 1, 2010), 384 pages. Review copy provided by the publisher.(less)
Knowing about the author sometimes influences how you approach his work. I started The Life O'Reilly with a strong sympathy for the author since he mu...moreKnowing about the author sometimes influences how you approach his work. I started The Life O'Reilly with a strong sympathy for the author since he must have written it while he worked at his successful law practice during the day. I also paid particular attention to his descriptions of Nick O'Reilly's professional life - the intrigue and power plays of the partners at Williams Gardner & Schmidt.
Cohen captured the small details of life at a law firm from the perks to the "fluid schedule" that governs the lives of everyone from paralegal to associate to partner. When Nick changes his schedule, his mentor Phil immediately notices the change and challenges his dedication to the firm. This slowly forces Nick's position to crisis. Cohen's description of Nick's mentor Phil and Will Schmidt, the hard-driving name partner at Williams Gardner & Schmidt are carefully drawn and well done. The rather negative portrayal of lawyers and law firm life is offset in part by Evan, Nick O'Reilly's partner and colleague. Though a successful attorney with a strong independent practice, Evan is deeply dissatisfied with life at Williams Gardner & Schmidt. Evan is torn by demands at the firm and his desire to carve out time for his family. The conversations between Evan and Nick about life at the firm give the book a certain authenticity.
The one part that bothered me was the actual conflict that arose -- but this may have come from my own biases. The one criticism that I have of the book is that I could not understand the path that Nick O'Reilly took. Other reviewers had a different take and gave The Life O'Reilly glowing reviews.
I had expected the book to be a thriller and was alert to sudden violence. The "UNEXPECTED EVENT" caught me by surprise and made The Life O'Reilly an unusual and enjoyable read.
ISBN-10: 1440150273 - Paperback $17.95 Publisher: iUniverse.com (October 21, 2009), 276 pages. Review copy provided by the author.(less)
Damaged is the 8th novel in the series of Maggie O'Dell is an FBI profiler. Maggie has proven herself and become the "go to person" for the complex se...more Damaged is the 8th novel in the series of Maggie O'Dell is an FBI profiler. Maggie has proven herself and become the "go to person" for the complex serial killer cases. In Damaged, O'Dell is mentally and psychologically exhausted from her latest case, but she's tough and unwilling to give an unsympathetic boss leverage over her. Maggie has learned to keep her demons to herself. When a cooler filled with body parts is found floating in Florida, her boss sends her down to assist. Maggie ends up in middle of a hurricane trying to help local officials identify a container of body parts, determine whether the parts come from murder victims - and if so, stop the killer.
Maggie's dropped in an unfamiliar city with a minimal support system. Part of the book's strength comes from Kava's description of just how Maggie overcomes these difficulties and learns to make alliances. Things don't come easily for Maggie and she appreciates every consideration and kindness that she receives. Not surprisingly, other folks that are similarly situated warm up to Maggie. One such character is Liz Bailey. Although she's a secondary character in the novel, Liz stands out. She's a rescue diver which means that she's lowered from a moving chopper into dangerous waters and volatile situations. While her courage, technical expertise, and her fast thinking have saved lives, Liz has been assigned to a new team and must prove herself to them. Like Maggie, Liz faces an unsympathetic and chauvinistic supervisor -- and Liz's handling of him and his pettiness bring a certain something to the story.
This is my first Alex Kava novel and I particularly liked her strong women characters. One thing that struck me was how Kava delved into the dynamics between Maggie O'Dell and her direct supervisor FBI Assistant Director Raymond Kunze and (2) the pettiness and power tripping demonstrated by Liz Bailey's direct supervisor towards the competent rescue diver. Both women respond the only possible way -- they take it on the chin and win my sympathy. I love that both Maggie and Liz prove themselves through their competence and work ethic. It was those small moments that made the book stand out to me.
Despite my focus on the work politics that the two lead women face, Damaged is a detective thriller first and foremost. Kava carefully crafts the story so that the action and clues build on each other to give us a fast-paced and complex thriller. If you're looking for a detective or crime thriller with strong characters and an interesting plot line, Damaged will surely satisfy.
ISBN-10: 0385531990 - Hardcover $24.99 Publisher: Doubleday (July 13, 2010), 272 pages. Review copy provided by the publisher.(less)
In Strong Justice, Land returns to three key figures of Strong Enough To Die a few months later: Guillermo Paz, Cort Wesley, and Caitlan Strong.
Touch...moreIn Strong Justice, Land returns to three key figures of Strong Enough To Die a few months later: Guillermo Paz, Cort Wesley, and Caitlan Strong.
Touched by Caitlin Strong's example, Guillermo Paz has returned to Mexico and tries to make amends for his past. Paz's willingness to protect the downtrodden won him a reputation that's part myth and part legend in his new town. Paz's admiration for Caitlin leads him to head North when he starts to suspect that she might be in grave danger.
Caitlin has been busy investigating the kidnapping and white slavery of young women along the border between Texas and Mexico. While it first appears that the victims are young women entering illegally from Mexico and being forced into white slavery. As Caitlin traces the first disappearances to a particular small town, a disturbing pattern slowly emerges.
Meanwhile, Cort Wesley has been struggling to keep his family together. While Wesley's real and well deserved reputation for toughness has kept him safe, his reputation may cost him his sons. The social worker assigned to his case has been threatening to take away his children. Cort tries to convince Social Services that he should retain custody and that he is, in fact, a good father. Against his better judgment, circumstances force Cort to reach out to his former employers for the money he needs to raise his children.
When Cort's teenage son Dylan stumbles into trouble, he calls on Caitlin for help. Somehow Dylan, Cort, and Caitlin (and eventually Paz) find themselves facing unexpected and unnatural evils together.
Also, while on his way to help Caitlin, Paz researches Caitlin's grandfather, the legendary Earl Strong. Through flashbacks, correspondence, Texas Rangers archives, the memories of survivors and their descendants, and Caitlin's recollections, Land tells us the story of Earl Strong and Texas in the 1930s. Through Earl Strong, we can picture what life was like when Texas Rangers were given the mandate to keep the peace in isolated and lawless towns. Though things haven't changed that much in Caitlin's time, the stories of Sweetwater, Texas in the 1930s tell us much about Texas's history and Caitlin's legacy.
Caitlin Strong is one of my favorite heroines, so I knew that I'd enjoy Strong Justice: A Caitlin Strong Novel. Land also builds on Cort Wesley's personality and history -- he's another hero of sorts who deserves more from the world. The introduction of Earl Strong and the events in the 1930s also give Strong Justice another important story and treat us to a glimpse into the Strong legacy. The book is about the trying to do what is right against desperate odds, just as it is about working to keep the peace and the Texas Rangers but it does this in two time periods and it does so with top notch action and fighting. In Strong Justice, Jon Land gives us heroes to root for and a fun, satisfying, action packed read!
ISBN-10: 0765323362- Hardcover Publisher: Forge Books; 1 edition (June 22, 2010), 352 pages. Review copy provided by the author.(less)
In Desire Me, Robyn DeHart gives us another lighthearted romance with an unusual twist. In her previous novel, the Men of Solomon were searching for P...moreIn Desire Me, Robyn DeHart gives us another lighthearted romance with an unusual twist. In her previous novel, the Men of Solomon were searching for Pandora's Box. This time, Robyn DeHart uncovers the secrets of the Lost City of Atlantis.
The romantic lead, Maxwell Barrett, is wealthy and is only interested in proving the existence of Atlantis. He isn't interested in amassing more wealth, building a family or conquering society -- an event in his past has focused his passions.
Sabine Tobias seems to be Maxwell Barrett's polar opposite. She's dedicated to her small family and her community and has spent her entire life trying to keep the dream of Atlantis and their culture alive. Part of preserving Atlantis means that she must keep its existence a secret. Recent events point to the fulfillment of a prophecy that threatens to destroy what Sabine holds most dear.
When Sabine and Max meet, they find themselves drawn to each other just as they each try to keep true to their larger goals. A shared danger makes them temporary allies, but this merely postpones the eventual heartbreak.
Desire Me is a fun read that combines romance with myth and adventure. Though I very much enjoyed Desire Me, I think that I preferred the earlier novel Seduce Me a little more. It may be that it was my first exposure to The Men of Solomon and DeHart's world where mythical places and objects are real and found by archeologists, historians, and scientists with the imagination and skill to find them. I recommend you check them both out -- see which adventure you prefer!
ISBN-10: 0446541974 - Mass Market Paperback Publisher: Forever (June 1, 2010), 368 pages. Review copy provided by the publisher.(less)
Assad Khalil, a.k.a. the Lion, is a deadly killer and a religious terrorist. Now that he's back on U.S. soil, he is pursuing his personal vendetta. He...moreAssad Khalil, a.k.a. the Lion, is a deadly killer and a religious terrorist. Now that he's back on U.S. soil, he is pursuing his personal vendetta. He intends to annihilate all the people linked to his family's destruction from the U.S. Air Force pilots to Federal Agent John Corey and FBI Agent Kate Mayfield. The Lion, like the fictional Jackal (from Return of the Jackal) is one of the world's most skilled assassins and Khalil enjoys the difficult kills.
Corey tries to take advantage of Khalil's love for the dramatic and Corey needs all the advantages that he can garner. Khalil seems to have unlimited resources, a wide range of targets, and no inhibitions. But Corey has his own strengths -- careful detective work, his creative thinking, his deep determination and desire for vengeance. The battle of between Corey and Khalil makes for an engrossing read and a satisfying thriller.
If you're looking for a fun weekend read or a thriller to escape with, check it out. Action-packed, complex, and engrossing, DeMille's The Lion will surely satisfy! (less)
I must admit a fondness for stories of revenge and redemption. Masked by Moonlight gives us a strong woman detective in "Cee Cee" Caissie - she's bi-r...moreI must admit a fondness for stories of revenge and redemption. Masked by Moonlight gives us a strong woman detective in "Cee Cee" Caissie - she's bi-racial, gorgeous, tough, and sexy. Cee Cee's enjoys her wearing the white hat - she's always had a strong sense of justice and enjoys the firepower to back up her beliefs. When an unguarded moment leads her to danger, she welcomes the help of the gorgeous and deadly Max Savoie.
Max Savoie is a big unknown. Though he serves as the muscle behind the largest crime boss in the area, there are no records of Max's past. Everything points to a difficult childhood and a struggle to get where he is today. When it becomes clear that Max and his family were always part of the undocumented class, Cee Cee develops some sympathy for Max's position.
The attraction and unconventional courtship between Max and Cee Cee is a strong subplot in the novel. The greater mystery of Max and Cee Cee's shared past moves the action forward and gives Masked by Moonlight a captivating storyline. As I learned more about Max's unique problem and his struggle towards normal, I found myself on Max's side and thoroughly enjoying the mafia aspects and intrigues of the novel.
If you're looking for a fun, romantic thriller with some unconventional (read: paranormal) twists, I recommend Masked by Moonlight. I can't wait to read what happens in the subsequent novels -- I certainly want to know what happens next with Max Savoie and Cee Cee Caissie.
ISBN-10: 1439149631 - Mass Market Paperback $7.99 Publisher: Pocket (May 25, 2010), 375 pages. Review copy provided by the publisher.(less)
Though Margaret Mallory is a relatively new writer of historical romance, she crafts her stories with a deft hand. Her "All the King's Men" series is...moreThough Margaret Mallory is a relatively new writer of historical romance, she crafts her stories with a deft hand. Her "All the King's Men" series is consistently entertaining -- with the just right amount of romance, banter, and subplots so that each book offers the escape and lighthearted romance that mark a "keeper."
But in Knight of Passion, Mallory adds certain historical details and suspense that give the novel a little something extra and turn it into one of my favorites. Mallory includes Owen Tudor as a character in the novel and weaves in his romance with King Henry V's widow, Katherine de Valois. The start of the Tudor dynasty can be traced to Katherine de Valois, Owen Tudor and their children.
But as interesting as the subplots may be, Knight of Passion is first and foremost a fun, satisfying romance novel. As I read the book, I knew it was one of those rare romances that I'd want to reread every so often. Knight of Passion is a book to share and to keep!
ISBN-10: 0446559865 - Mass Market Paperback Publisher: Forever (June 1, 2010), 416 pages. Review copy provided by the publisher. (less)
The first thing I noticed about The Art of Devotion was the beauty of the text -- the language is so lyrical. Other reviewers have mentioned how the w...moreThe first thing I noticed about The Art of Devotion was the beauty of the text -- the language is so lyrical. Other reviewers have mentioned how the writing is almost poetic. It certainly flows so well.
Just as I was adjusting to the language, I was drawn to the glamourous and rarified circles that the characters lived in. Much like I loved reading about the characters that F. Scott Fitzgerald would come up with (think: Great Gatsby, short stories with titles like A Diamond as Big as the Ritz!), I enjoyed Bruce-Benjamin's references to the Metropolitan Club, the mysterious island in the Mediterranean and to great wealth.
The Art of Deception opens with a wedding reception at the exclusive Metropolitan Club in New York City. I'd been curious about this building ever since I'd seen it on the Upper East Side years ago, so this detail caught my attention right away. The novel tells us about the lives of privileged British nationals living in Europe from 1919 until 1940. During this time of great wealth, and the novel is vaguely reminiscent of Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby in that the main characters of The Art of Deception are privileged and insulated by their wealth. Even the quote above reminds me of Nick's opening words in The Great Gatsby.
The novel is told by four different women:
Adora - daughter of Sophia, sister to Sebastian, wife to Oliver. Adora is British by nationality but she's grown up on an unidentified island in the Mediterranean. Graced with breathtaking and unforgettable beauty and great wealth, Adora opts for an unconventional life on her island. One source of sadness is that she and Oliver cannot have children. Adora takes a deep liking to Genevieve and showers her with love and support.
Genevieve - daughter of Miriam and Oliver's best friend, James. Genevieve had been drawn to the beauty, glamor and charm of Adora and Oliver ever since she was a child. Genevieve and her family spend their summers with Adora and Oliver on their island. Genevieve's close relationship with Adora shapes a large part of her identity as a young woman.
Miriam - mother of Genevieve and wife to James. The novel opens with Miriam revealing herself as the protective and devoted mother. Though Miriam spent her summers on the island, it is clear that she had felt distanced from Adora and Oliver. While James and Genevieve are devoted to Adora and Oliver, Miriam does not feel part of their group but instead harbors some resentment towards them.
Sophie - mother of Adora and Sebastian. Extremely wealthy, beautiful, well connected and brilliant, Sophie and her husband had enjoyed the glamour, culture and stimulation of diplomatic circles. Sophie decides to relocate the family to the island in the Mediterranean for her children's sake. One of the book's strengths comes from the way that Samantha Bruce-Benjamin captures so the complicated and uneasy relationship between Sophie and Adora.
As I got drawn in by the language, the characters and their glamorous lives, the author slowly reveals all sorts of hidden truths and twists in the novel. As I was reading these revelations about the characters and the events in their lives, I was struck by how well Samantha Bruce-Benjamin had planned each clue and how each part built on the next. The Art of Devotion is an unusual and unexpected read.
ISBN-10: 1439153949 - Paperback $15.00 Publisher: Gallery; Original edition (June 8, 2010), 378 pages. Review copy provided by the publisher. (less)
It's been a while since I've read comic strips, and The Knight Life reminds me why I used to check the daily for the latest gem. Keith Knight's "autob...moreIt's been a while since I've read comic strips, and The Knight Life reminds me why I used to check the daily for the latest gem. Keith Knight's "autobiographical comic strip" pulls together everyday things and left me shaking my head, tabbing pages, and sharing the chuckles.
In one strip, Keith dubs himself the "Chucklehead of Cheap," the "Friar of Frugality," -- and it so reminded me of someone that I know! Keith touches on immigration, gifting (re-gifting), weirdos on the bus, hoarding plastic bags, Trapper Keeper notebooks, Barack Obama, bi-racial relationships, Trader Joe's 2 buck chuck, taco trucks, junk mail, real estate, and bookcrossing's way of releasing books into the world and tracking them as they travel around the world. The "Life's Little Victories" series speak to me.
The Knight Life: Chivalry Ain't Dead is a hilarious introduction to Keith Knight's witty comic strip. I'm glad to have found it!
ISBN-10: 0446548669 - Paperback $17.99 Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (June 9, 2010), 224 pages. Review copy provided by the publisher. (less)
I haven't read The Rossetti Letter, so I approached The Devlin Diary as a standalone novel. On its own, The Devlin Diary is a satisfying read.
The book...moreI haven't read The Rossetti Letter, so I approached The Devlin Diary as a standalone novel. On its own, The Devlin Diary is a satisfying read.
The book opens in 1670 in the Palace of Saint-Cloud in Paris at the sickbed of Princess Henriette-Anne, the wife of the Duc d'Orlean, sister-in-law to King Louis XIV of France and sister to King Charles Stuart of England. Princess Henriette-Anne has suddenly fallen sick and is in great pain, it is clear that she is not expected to live much longer. Surrounded by courtiers from France and England, the Princess has little privacy. In her last moments, she calls on an obscure Englishman, Robert Osborne, and it is to him that she whispers her last instructions.
The book jumps to London in 1672 where we meet Mrs. Hannah Devlin, the widowed daughter of two doctors who practices medicine as a physician and a "physick." Under the laws of the time, the College of Physicians and medical societies exclude women; Mrs. Devlin cannot qualify to practice medicine and risks a criminal charge of practicing medicine without a license. But Mrs. Devlin's practice is limited to poor and common folk with whom she has established a reputation for competence and skill, and she is safe as long as she remains unnoticed. It should be noted that Mrs. Devlin's medical training and skill is impeccable - she's learned from her parents who were both respected doctors. Her father had been physician to the King until a political disagreement caused him to be exiled from Court. Her mother had trained and practiced medicine in France, but upon her marriage was limited to acting as a "physick" and assisting her husband in his medical practice.
Mrs. Devlin is grabbed off the streets and brought to the King's residence at Whitehall to treat a favorite's suspicious illness. The diagnosis and treatment are within Hannah Devlin's competence, but the politics and intrigue at court may be her downfall. Hannah Devlin parries with Lord Arlington, a powerful man whose stormy relationship with her father threatens Hannah's own safety. Through her work at court, Mrs. Devlin befriends Dr. Edward Strathern who is newly appointed to run the anatomy theater at the College of Physicians. When members of court are murdered in a grisly and disturbing manner, Mrs. Devlin and Dr. Strathern work together to make sense of the killer's clues and to hunt down the murderer before he can kill again.
The Devlin Diary alternates between the story of Mrs. Devlin in the 1680s and Dr. Claire Donovan at Trinity College, Cambridge in 2008. Soon after solving the mystery behind The Rossetti Letter, Claire Donovan has been offered a prestigious fellowship at Cambridge University. While exploring an arcane collection in one of Cambridge's most eminent libraries, Claire Donovan comes across a slim volume written in code in the 1600s. As Claire deciphers the text, she realizes that she's found an account of unsolved murders during the time of King Charles Stuart. When a fellow historian is murdered, Claire Donovan and Andrew Kent search for links between the recent murder and the mysterious journal.
Christi Phillips combines historical fiction with a complex and well crafted mystery. If you're fond of unusual mysteries and historical fiction and looking for an engrossing, satisfying read, check out The Devlin Diary. I enjoyed it so much that I've just ordered the earlier novel, The Rossetti Letter.
ISBN-10: 1416527397 - Trade Paperback $15.00 Publisher: Pocket (May 12, 2009), 448 pages. Review copy provided by the publisher.(less)
In Rumor Has It: In a town this small, a secret is hard to keep, Jill Mansell comes up with another hilarious madcap and satisfying read! In the best...moreIn Rumor Has It: In a town this small, a secret is hard to keep, Jill Mansell comes up with another hilarious madcap and satisfying read! In the best British chicklit tradition, Mansell creates slightly spacey but sympathetic women romantic lead characters. When Tilly comes home to find her apartment ransacked, it takes a while before she realizes that her boyfriend has left her. Tilly's response is to take the commuter rail to the small town of Roxborough -- to visit her best friend, Erin, for cheering up.
Tilly comes across an ad for a "Girl Friday" job in Roxborough just as she decides that she's ready for a change of scenery. A string of events make it possible for Tilly to chuck her old life and start anew, surrounded by a new set of friends. Among the different characters, we meet:
* Max - a loving father, who has recently come out of the closet and separated from his wife; * Kaye - Max's ex-wife, a famous daytime television star in the US, based in California; * Louisa - Max and Kaye's teenage daughter, ginger haired, pale, lively, and fun. Louisa draws everyone together and decides quite early on that Tilly would be a good addition to the household; * Jake - Max's best friend, the most sought-after bachelor in the area, deadly good looks, wealthy, and not looking for a serious relationship; and * Erin - Tilly's best friend from college, the owner and manager of a vintage/high end thrift shop in Roxborough.
As Tilly, Max, Louisa, Kaye, and Erin are upbeat and supportive of each other as they each face their personal crises. Coincidences, misunderstandings and mishaps abound to create a fun, romantic comedy. Mansell's humor, sense of timing and wit come together so well to make Rumor Has It a surefire hit! If you're looking for a hilarious and satisfying read in the realm of women's fiction, I highly recommend Rumor Has It!
ISBN-10: 1402237502 - Trade Paperback Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark (May 1, 2010), 416 pages. Review copy provided by the publisher.(less)
In Dead End Gene Pool, Wendy Burden shares her unique insight and quirky stories of her privileged upbringing as the great-great-great granddaughter o...moreIn Dead End Gene Pool, Wendy Burden shares her unique insight and quirky stories of her privileged upbringing as the great-great-great granddaughter of Cornelius Vanderbilt. The details of their everyday life and Wendy's anecdotes about her family are fascinating on their own, but with the added advantage of her biting wit, Dead End Gene Pool reads so well.
Wendy describes the moment that she realized that Santa Claus doesn't exist: "A kid who can talk herself into believing the Addams Family was inspired by reality can extend faith in the existence of Santa Claus almost indefinitely. Okay, maybe I didn't actually believe in Santa Claus -- I mean I wasn't stupid enough to think an enormously fat man was going to squeeze down that skinny Philip Johnson fireplace in the living room bearing presents the size of footlockers -- but I believed in the eternal optimism and idealism of Christmas, and in the theoretical six degrees of separation as it applied to all grown-ups and Santa Claus." Wendy then proceeds to tell us about the Christmas long ago when she came face to face with her Santa Claus and what this meant to her younger self -- without drama and without self-pity. Wendy tells us of the times she met her childhood heroes Charles Addams and Walt Disney - in hilarious and self-deprecating detail.
I particularly enjoyed reading about the way that her family entertained during their summer visits to Maine. From the intricacies of the menu, service, and each carefully planned item to the guests and manners, Wendy paints a vivid picture.
The stories grow progressively darker over time with her mother's subsequent marriages, unexpected deaths in the family, paralyzing disappointment and the inevitable effects of time and hard living. Wendy Burden gives us a funny, fascinating and satisfying tale of American wealth and privilege. Dead End Gene Pool: A Memoir is a book worth reading, rereading and sharing.
ISBN-10: 1592405266 - Hardcover $26.00 Publisher: Gotham; 1St Edition edition (April 1, 2010), 272 pages. Review copy courtesy of the publisher and TLC Book Tours. (less)
The Third Rail opens on Chicago's "L" just as someone is killed by a sniper. It soon becomes clear that the victim was selected almost at random, just...moreThe Third Rail opens on Chicago's "L" just as someone is killed by a sniper. It soon becomes clear that the victim was selected almost at random, just as a means to capture Michael Kelly's attention.
The killer has a hidden message that he expects Kelly to decipher. Kelly's off the police force but has been called in to assist. As it becomes increasingly clear that the Mayor, the FBI and the police would like to hunt down and stop -- preferably with lethal force -- this unknown killer, Kelly starts noticing how the killer is leaving clues that tie to a train crash from his childhood.
Michael Kelly is a private investigator that must have been an excellent detective - his instincts are spot on. He's still well regarded by the Mayor and the top brass at the Chicago Police Department, but the reason for his going on his own is never hinted at. I'm guessing that he was overzealous in his pursuit of a criminal and though his actions were privately applauded, he was publicly discharged and reprimanded? He's trusted and given much discretion to bring the current "terror" to justice. Using his sharp powers of observation and deduction, Kelly pieces together the message behind these acts of violence. As he moves to stop the next attack, Kelly suffers a personal loss of his own.
This is my first Michael Harvey novel, it's made me want to read his two earlier novels in the Michael Kelly series, The Chicago Way and The Fifth Floor, to get a better understanding of his detective hero.
Action-packed and carefully crafted, The Third Rail is a fast-paced and satisfying detective thriller!
ISBN-10: 0307272508 - Hardcover Publisher: Knopf; 1 edition (April 20, 2010), 304 pages. Review copy provided by Kaye Publicity and the publisher.(less)