I "met" Emma and Chris in Watch Your Back and when I discovered they had their own story, albeit a shorter one, I was on board immediately. Well...HmmI "met" Emma and Chris in Watch Your Back and when I discovered they had their own story, albeit a shorter one, I was on board immediately. Well...Hmmm.
Let me start by saying I quite enjoyed it. It was funny when it needed to be, it was intense when it needed to be, it was dramatic when it needed to be, it was suspenseful when it needed to be...It's just that, due to everything that was going on, it appeared even shorter than it was.
Let's start with the two, leads, shall we? Seventeen years ago, they went to highschool together. He wrote her a letter she never read (she never found it), and because she never read it, she broke his heart, and they went on their separate ways. Both got married; he had a daughter and got divorced three years ago, her husband died one year ago...And cleaning the attic in their old house, she finally found that letter, and decided to make amends.
Awwww, right? Cute, sweet, and lovely.
What happened next wasn't so cute, sweet, and lovely. I get it, he was in love with her seventeen years ago, I get it, he lusted after her seventeen years ago...But to be ready to jump her bones the minutes he lays eyes on her after seventeen freaking years as if nothing had happened in between (no marriage, no kid, no heartbreak...nothing), is stretching it. I'm all for romance and reunions of heart, but take a little time, damn it! I fully comprehended the daughter, a teenager with "the world as we know it is gonna end now that my father is getting laid again" mentality, in her reaction. Well, not her full reaction, but the gist was rather spot on—it was too damn fast!
And then we get to the suspense part of the story. It was good, but too predictable. I knew who the killer was, almost from the start, and I knew how (the suspense part) would help mend things between Emma and Chris' daughter. It was all right there, glaringly obvious.
Reading the last two paragraphs you might get the impression I didn't really like the story, but I did. It wasn't the best, but it was far from the worst I've ever read, hence the middle-ground rating. But if it were longer and less predictable, I would've enjoyed it more....more
A couple of months ago a girl was raped, beaten, and left for dead by the side of the road. She has no idea how she got from being alive and well at tA couple of months ago a girl was raped, beaten, and left for dead by the side of the road. She has no idea how she got from being alive and well at the Neptune Grand to half-naked, beaten and raped in a ditch, but she does remember that a Grand's employee had done the deed.
This is where Veronica Mars comes in. The Grand's insurance company has hired her to (dis)prove the victim's story...Only when it comes to Neptune, and Veronica Mars, cases like this never turn out to be simple.
Although the story didn't have the same steady pace of its predecessor the case was still intriguing, and nicely-plotted. The secondary stories from both the movie and the first book came to a more-or-less satisfying end, and pretty much all of the characters and their individual "arcs" are developing nicely.
Pretty much, because of one glaring exception. The heroine herself. Because I have a feeling Veronica isn't developing but standing still ever since the first season of the TV series, and has even regressed a lot from the beginning of the movie. You see, I'm not into book only for the plots (be it romance or mystery), I'm in it for the characters. The characters are the driving force behind everything. And when a character is grinding to a halt, it bugs the hell out of me, and diminishes my appreciation of the story as a whole.
And I have a major problem with Ms. Mars' characterization. The girl has obvious abandonment issues and is, obviously, constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop. She's never satisfied with what she has, and is always looking for ways out. Even when she's not pushing people away, so they do abandon her, she does the abandoning herself. I'm surprised that she, as a psych major or minor or whatever, hasn't figured this out and tried to seek help. For she needs it.
You see, at the beginning of the movie she was with Piz, whom she chose (even way back in college) because he was safe and he would never hurt her. But that turn out how she wanted it to (because she doesn't know what exactly she wants), so she went back to Logan...And left a promising law career (which she also chose because it was different from the PI business) behind. Okay, I'm a LoVe fan, so I can buy that. Logan has changed—we were shown and told in this book just how much and just what his career and his military life mean to him—and their love story was epic, so it seemed fitting (and romantic as hell) for them to end up together. At the beginning of this book they're even living together, but she's already having second thoughts...about his career, about her ability to live with that. But does she talk to him about it? Nope, she keeps it all bottled inside, yet resents him when he does try to talk it through. And then, when he does back to his duty (protecting not only her but everybody, might I add), she's already ogling up a replacement for the poor guy. Someone more convenient, someone her friends and father like more than Logan. But the whole "liking Logan" thing isn't only on the guy's shoulders, it's on her father's and friends' as well. Because I never noticed them trying to make overly nice to the guy that's obviously grown and changed the most out of every single VM character.
Logan is actually a grown-up, while the rest of the merry bunch had stayed pretty much the same—in high-school, with the exception of Keith Mars, that is.
And on that bombshell (if I borrow from one of my favorite TV shows that has just lost one of it's stars), that has turned into a character study instead of a simple book review, it's time to end....more
The book started off with a bang. The prologue was creepy and chilling, yet attention-grabbing. Unfortunately, that was all there was to it.
The next fThe book started off with a bang. The prologue was creepy and chilling, yet attention-grabbing. Unfortunately, that was all there was to it.
The next few chapters were boring, the story dragged like it had all the time in the world, everything else was explored (even earthquakes, tsunamis, and ghosts) instead of focusing on the main plot...You know, the thing that got me into the book in the first place. You know, the thing that was promised in the prologue.
My attention span isn't as good as it once was, the percentage of "book read" in the lower right corner of my Kindle app didn't seem inclined to change, and I got fed up. I skipped to the end to see it things improved enough for me to stick with it, but, although the ending, the big confrontation, was probably supposed to be nail-biting and action-packed, it just didn't resonate with me....more
What can I say? It was a good story, although narrated through the eyes of a character I just couldn't connect to. Cornelia Markum seemed more of an aWhat can I say? It was a good story, although narrated through the eyes of a character I just couldn't connect to. Cornelia Markum seemed more of an automaton, than a person. Yes, she's a character in a book, but that doesn't mean a story from her point of view should feel so unemotional, detached, and rather inhuman.
The murder plot could've been much less predictable, and the outcome as well. Even though it was a short story everything, characterization and plot, could've been done better....more
**spoiler alert** When she was sixteen Grace saved a little boy (and herself) by killing a murdered with a broken bottle of vodka. Now, a bottle of vo**spoiler alert** When she was sixteen Grace saved a little boy (and herself) by killing a murdered with a broken bottle of vodka. Now, a bottle of vodka of the same brand is found near the body of her boss that she oh-so-conveniently found dead in his bed...When the vodka makes its entrance again, it's obvious someone is stalking her, trying to make her look like a suspect. Only she suspects the stalking has less to do with her dead boss and his missing money than with what happened in the past.
Though maybe not as gripping, intense, and page-turning as River Road this book still packed quite a punch. And the sometimes almost-eery atmosphere of the little town around the lake helped with the punch-packing.
Unfortunately, it was a tad predictable, I couldn't help but anticipate the involvement of the two friends in the larger scheme of things, but other than that it was a solid, well-written and well-plotted suspense novel with a wonderful cast of characters. When you pick up a book by Ms. Krentz (in any of her "forms"), you know you won't end up being disappointed.
Although it would've made a nice little twist in the end if the hero ended up being the bad guy. It would've hammered the trust no one rule solidly home. ...more
It took me three days to get to page 135. And not because I'm a slow reader. Everything else seemed to be slow, though.
The blurb (and the beginning) pIt took me three days to get to page 135. And not because I'm a slow reader. Everything else seemed to be slow, though.
The blurb (and the beginning) promised something akin to a Dan Brown novel (I know, I'm mentioning the guy a lot lately), but unfortunately it didn't deliver. At least not until the point I stopped reading. A book like this is supposed to suck you in and spit you out at the very end, not offer you tea and hope you'll stick around. I don't like tea that much.
When, on the fourth day, I opened the book again, I just sighed when reading the first paragraph, closed it, and placed it in my to-give-away box. But I'll just probably give it away to the library. I know they won't resent me. ...more
Well, this most certainly would've gotten a higher rating if I haven't read Forsyth's The Kill List first. After reading that one, the pacing in Mr. TWell, this most certainly would've gotten a higher rating if I haven't read Forsyth's The Kill List first. After reading that one, the pacing in Mr. Thor's novel was a lot slower, some information and although I appreciated the suspense plot (though somewhat similar at the beginning to The Kill List's rescue operation in Somalia), everything else seemed rather redundant. Also, the information the hero (and the reader) needed in order for the plot to progress—the historical background—was presented in a rather academic and boring fashion. I love history, but I just wasn't interested all that much.
And the second beef I have with this story was the fact it reminded me too much of Brown's Angels and Demons. There were multiple missing important people, a race against time, the main plot taking place in just one city...
When while you're reading everything else is running through your head but the story, the protagonists, or guesses as to who might the villain be, that's not a very good sign....more
This is a prime example of how a thriller should be written. The reader has to be hooked from the first paragraph and keep turning and turning the pagThis is a prime example of how a thriller should be written. The reader has to be hooked from the first paragraph and keep turning and turning the pages to see what would happen next, how it would end.
I was hooked from the first paragraph, and I would've kept turning the pages, but I had to take a break somewhere in the middle for work related reasons. What a bummer work is, don't you think?
Mr. Forsyth takes the reader on a globetrotting experience from the US to Afganistan and Pakistan, then back to the UK and over the mediterranean into Oman, Yemen, Kuwait, and Somalia. Also, everybody who is anybody in the espionage, terrorism, and anti-terrorism made an appearance - CIA, TOSA, ISI, SIS, Mossad, al-Qaeda, Somali pirates...And the hero was a Marine, born on November 10 (which also happens to be my birth date).
This was a fast-paced, page-turning, edge-of-your-seat action (toward the end) thriller with a mysterious hero (I loved it, how the author kept calling him Tracker throughout the book) in search of a radical terrorist whose "webinars" kept turning moderate Muslims into full-blown Jihadists...And when the Preacher "made it personal", I knew the fun (if I can even use that word) has just started. The ending was predictable (no beating around the bush, there was just one way it was going to end), but I loved the unpredictability of how we got to the ending.
What I loved most of all was the narrative style. It was a very journalistic type of narration. Short sentenced, loads of information, a very "objective" author's voice, an omniscient point of view...Yet the story never dragged, it never got boring, no matter who we were seeing in a particular scene or where we were, the pages kept on turning, the story kept on flowing.
This was an amazing piece of fiction that merits its spot on my favorites shelf....more
I bought this book at an airport (in Malta, I think), solely due to the blurb and the word Titanic in the title. And yesterday, after reading I-don't-kI bought this book at an airport (in Malta, I think), solely due to the blurb and the word Titanic in the title. And yesterday, after reading I-don't-know-how-many-romances in a row, I decided to give this one a go, because a change of "scenery" was needed. And you can't go wrong with choosing a suspense/thriller if you're a little tired of romance in your reading.
When I think thriller, I think suspense, edge-of-your-seat action, nail-biting narration, a page-turner. This one was far from any of it, unfortunately. (Or maybe it's just me.)
The narration was slow, the story dragged, when there were passages describing the look of the wreck under the sea, I couldn't help but compare them to purple prose, the characters were bland, the story in 1912 boring...I just didn't feel "the connection", I didn't care what happened next as long as the book ended.
The premise was good, the blurb was fantastic (it's what enticed me to buy the book), yet the delivery failed completely. ...more
No surprises there. At least not for me. The heroine still got on my nerves, the hero was still bland***ARC provided by publisher through NetGalley***
No surprises there. At least not for me. The heroine still got on my nerves, the hero was still bland...And the big surprising twist in the end wasn't neither big nor surprising.
That's it? That's why you had to drag the story through four installments? You could've just written one novella and be done with it. But no, we had to have family drama, uneventful narrative passages, murder scenes gone stale after the first good novella in the series...
After that first story I was really excited where the plot would go until the end of the series. But it had quickly taken a turn to Predictable Road and went down the Blah Cliff. Oh, well....more
Okay, my fascination with this 4-novella series has obviously ended. As with the second one, the pace***ARC provided by publisher through NetGalley***
Okay, my fascination with this 4-novella series has obviously ended. As with the second one, the pace was too slow, the heroine has suffered a small character transplant from the first story, and there was just nothing in this one making me go wow.
The twist that should've been unexpected (what exactly happened to Stevie's father) wasn't unexpected at all. I've been waiting for the reveal since novella number one. And now I'm waiting to see if the last twist in this series (the mastermind behind the drug problem in Solitude) is the one I'm suspecting - the matriarch.
Please, let me be wrong. Surprise me, please....more
Short and intense, just how I like a suspense story from an unknown author.
A great introduction into ***ARC provided by publisher through NetGalley***
Short and intense, just how I like a suspense story from an unknown author.
A great introduction into the world of the little town of Solitude where everybody knows everybody, and where an "expatriate" returns home after her father's death. I have a suspicion about that particular death, but I'll let myself be surprised. ;)
Wonderful cast of characters, good characterization, natural narrative flow, lovely author's voice. Nice balance of suspense and romance, the scale tipping more toward suspense offers a nice twist on the genre and a good incentive to keep reading the next novellas....more
Don't let the rating fool you. I liked this one. It was just too short, and written as a case file (from Fallon Jones' point of view), and I didn't reDon't let the rating fool you. I liked this one. It was just too short, and written as a case file (from Fallon Jones' point of view), and I didn't really know how to rate it, so I took the middle ground.
It was great revisiting Fallon again, since I have a soft spot for this chaos theorist. And for Scargill Cove where the man's hearth is.
The narrative style offered a special glimpse into the man's psyche and thinking patterns (he was a hoot in this one), we're presented with a small investigation in Scargill Cove during which we learn there are no coincidences, and in the end witness the first meeting of Fallon and Isabella from his point of view.
Now I'm itching to re-read In Too Deep and get to see the two of them interact all over again....more
As with the previous installment in this series, and the last addition to Ms. Quick's bibliography, The Mystery Woman, thisWell, this happened. Again.
As with the previous installment in this series, and the last addition to Ms. Quick's bibliography, The Mystery Woman, this one didn't impress me either.
Though there were some similar reasons for me remaining rather cool about this book, like not feeling the attraction or affection between the two leads (because I didn't feel it not even in the end, when they confessed their feeling to each other), there were some 'improvements' from the its predecessor in the heroine and hero department. Unlike many of Quick's heroines, Amity didn't grate on my nerves (at all), and Benedict, was (again) the usual hero fare when it comes to this author.
There was no paranormal aspect, which didn't bother me that much, although I adore those from Ms. Krentz and her two alter egos, and the suspense was great, with the utterly insane serial killer (!), and the spy subplot.
But somehow that didn't help. Maybe it was the fact the blurb promised something that wasn't actually in the book. But it was probably the voice factor. In the beginning this didn't sound like an Amanda Quick book. It sounded more like a print-on-demand first novel by an unknown and an inexperienced author. Later the Quick-voice was somewhat back, but the damage has been done (and kept on being done in some scenes, like the one in the cottage—I've come to expect a certain degree of awesomness when it comes to Ms. Quick's writing of seduction scenes, and that awesomness was glaringly missing in that particular one *shudder*).
It wasn't bad, far from it, especially thanks to the suspense part, but it wasn't as great as I've come to expect from this author....more
I usually have a hit-and-miss think with Ms. Roberts' books, because of her heroines. They're always strong and independentOh, wow. Now we're talking!
I usually have a hit-and-miss think with Ms. Roberts' books, because of her heroines. They're always strong and independent women, but sometimes they come across as too strong, too stubborn, too independent, and I end up not particularly liking them, and not particularly understanding what the appeal is for the hero. And sometimes the heroine is just perfect, with 'perfectly proportioned' strength and vulnerability, steel and mushy core, her sense of humor is right up my alley, and she's so cute and adorable trying to wiggle out of the 'thing' with the hero I just love her to bits.
Lila was one of the latter. An amazing heroine, a great NR heroine. Funny, smart, stubborn, capable of taking care of herself, sometimes closed-of, sometimes afraid, caring, giving, sexy without knowing, a writer, and a gipsy. I won't lose words about Ash, the hero, because the guy was a typical NR hero. Not in a stereotype, cardboard cutout kind of way, but he had that NR-hero vibe, that air about him. Strong, silent, sometimes broody, all-the-time protective, and falling head over heels for the heroine in a chapter or two. Unlike NR heroines, I never find any fault in NR heroes, because they're 'normal'. Not overly alpha, not overly beta, but just the right mix to knock you off your feet when you least expect it.
So, with the heroine and hero just perfect, the story could not have been any less. It was pretty much a typical NR suspense fare (again, not stereotypical or predictable, but...just right). There was a hunt for rare objets d'art with some great research on the Romanov family and the Fabergé collectibles thrown in (perfect for a history junky), a murder or two, a crazed killer for hire, a transatlantic trip, a weirdly large family, two wonderful friends, a few pets, great H/h, and, of course, the romance.
The suspense part was edge of the seat, biting of the nails action in parts, the romance was heartwarming, because I just love how Ms. Roberts writes romance (and everything that goes with it), and there was the requisite humor (I love the one-liners Ms. Roberts characters deliver).
I just can't seem to get enough of NR's romantic suspense novels, and I can't seem to write a decent review of it without using stupid superlatives or starting to repeat myself.
Suffice to say, this one was a perfect package. One of those books, you want to read all over again as soon as you finish.
It was a good romantic suspense specimen with the requisite brooding, I-don't-deserve-happiness hero,***ARC provided by publisher through NetGalley***
It was a good romantic suspense specimen with the requisite brooding, I-don't-deserve-happiness hero, a spunky heroine (that actually acted like someone untrained is supposed to in circumstances she was thrown in and didn't turn into a warrior princess like rom-suspense heroines often do), a psychotic killer, and the right kind of atmosphere. Unfortunately it was too predictable for my taste, hence the rating.
Nine years ago she left the town of Neptune behind and her old life behind. She'd tried living the normal life on the other coast; college, promisingNine years ago she left the town of Neptune behind and her old life behind. She'd tried living the normal life on the other coast; college, promising law career, boy-next-door boyfriend...But one phone call, a voice from the past, brought her back...
Now she's running her father's PI business, trying to make end meet, when a missing person's case is dropped into her lap...Quickly followed by another, bringing with it another ghost from her past. But when it turns out both cases might be tied to a drug cartel, Veronica Mars just might be in over her head.
"A long time ago, we used to be friends, but I haven't thought of you lately at all." That's how Veronica Mars title song starts. A long time ago me and Veronica used to be friends as well. In the sense that I was a huge fan of the TV show (or at least its first two seasons), but unlike the song, I have been thinking about her lately. All because of a movie.
I wasn't one of the backers (I heard about it too late), but I did see it...Multiple times. And I loved it, convoluted mystery, TV show feel, and all. So when I heard about the book (series), I had to read it, because I wanted to know what happened next. Was Veronica really staying, would she and Logan really give it another go, was Keith going to be okay, was Lamb going down...? I wasn't ready to let go yet. I wasn't ready to let go of Veronica yet. Because if she were real, that's the kind of friend I'd kill to have. A prickly little marshmallow.
I wasn't really expecting much from the book. Well, I was expecting something akin to a TV show episode scenario or screenplay. So I was pleasantly surprised at what I ended up with. A solid, fast-paced suspense novel with a pretty tight plot.
The mystery was intriguing, filled with red herrings, and kept me guessing until the very end. I love it when, at the end of a book, I can say "I sure didn't see that one coming." I honestly had no idea who the (final) baddie was. Kudos to Mr. Thomas and Mrs. Graham for that.
Beside the main mystery, we returned to Neptune, hung out with old friends, got a deeper (and longer) glimpse into the heroine's psyche and inner workings that, at least me, we didn't get to do via the other medium (TV), etc. And I loved the fact we got to experience the entire story through the eyes of only one character, instead of jumping back and forth between POVs. And the fact the book, despite the one POV, wasn't written in first person narrative was an added bonus. Thank you again, Mr. Thomas and Mrs. Graham.
Some who saw the move kept 'complaining' about it being made mostly for fans, how non-fans wouldn't be able to grasp all the nuances, catch all the Easter eggs etc., and they might have been right (I can't say for sure, because I am a fan), but I can say that's less true about the book. There was enough information (at the beginning and throughout the story) given as far as backstory and main characters was concerned, so the reader didn't have to scratch his/her head wondering about those 'details', and the mystery itself had nothing to do with the plots of either the TV series (except for one character) or the movie, although the story is some sort of sequel to the movie.
This is a book for fans and first-timers alike that will keep them entertained, intrigued, and guessing until the end....more
Thirteen years ago Lucy Sheridan was dragged from a party by Mason "Nobody messes with Mason Fletcher" Fletcher, her aunt ushered her on an airplane hThirteen years ago Lucy Sheridan was dragged from a party by Mason "Nobody messes with Mason Fletcher" Fletcher, her aunt ushered her on an airplane home, and Lucy hasn't been in Summer River since. Now she's back as her aunt's heir, determined to find out what really happened to her aunt Sara. And the person who could help her find out the truth just might be Mason Fletcher. He's still overprotective, he's still taciturn...and he still makes her blood sing. But the latter isn't important. The discovery in her aunt's fireplace is, and the sudden odd behavior by some Summer River's residents.
I loved it. It had everything. Romance (which was rather realistic, if you ask be, albeit quick), drama (of the family kind), humor (especially the discussion of vegans and murder), and loads of suspense. I loved every single part of it, but I especially enjoyed the suspense. Because it was suspenseful, there's no way around it. I kept wondering and wondering who the bad guy was, even went so far as to think that the ghost might not be a ghost after all, the possibilities were endless, and so were red herrings.
I love a good mystery, I love good intrigue, I love it when the author keeps surprising me, keeps me guessing. And that's exactly what happened in this story. I didn't know the culprit until the end, and in the end it actually made sense as to why a person did what they did. Everything else, although good, pretty much took a back seat to the suspense part. Which was more than fine by me. I was itching for another good suspense novel.
There were strong romantic elements involved, a great cast, a rather quirky heroine, a brooding, (over)protective hero, some drama, some creepiness (what was truly going down on that party thirteen years ago). All nicely wrapped up in a tightly-plotted suspense package. What's there not to like?...more
***copy provided by publisher through NetGalley***
A one-weekend stand seven years ago resulted in a kid. A kid with a dead father...Only that father s***copy provided by publisher through NetGalley***
A one-weekend stand seven years ago resulted in a kid. A kid with a dead father...Only that father seems rather alive as he's wrestling (not in a kinky way) with the nanny in their kitchen.
If this was longer than 85 pages it would've remained unfinished. Because although it tried to come up with a plot about a ghost operative secretly watching over the woman he loves and his child, while also trying to apprehend a similar ghost operative who're apparently stolen some top-secret shit...I just didn't buy it. It read more like a not-very-well-written PWP short story, catering to readers who like spank-related "storylines", badly disguised as a romantic suspense novella.
***copy provided by publisher through NetGalley***
Yet another book I just couldn't bring myself to finish. But with this one I admitted defeat even ea***copy provided by publisher through NetGalley***
Yet another book I just couldn't bring myself to finish. But with this one I admitted defeat even earlier. I just couldn't get into the story. The heroine has issues from the get go. Especially with chauvinistic men. Since the hero didn't strike me as that much of a chauvinist, the result was skipping to the middle of the story. There I discovered the depth of heroine's issues, so I skipped to the end (thinking that maybe she comes around in the end and that'll make me read the entire book from the start). Nope. I went with chapter 13 (out of 16) and was slapped in the face by the same issues. And then she ran. She blamed her father, she blamed her ex, she blamed everybody for her issues but herself...And I wanted to choke her. She finally came around at the very end and even then the hero came to her and not the other way around.
Sam Kelly, Marine sniper, died five years ago in Afghanistan. The same day Sam Kelly died, Jack Stone, NSA operative was born. New face, new identity,Sam Kelly, Marine sniper, died five years ago in Afghanistan. The same day Sam Kelly died, Jack Stone, NSA operative was born. New face, new identity, new past...Old memories. Filled with one woman, Sophie Moreno. The same woman who now works for a company the NSA is investigating as being possibly involved with smuggling of biological weapons. Jack is called in. To get close to Sophie, his boss orders, and find out what she knows.
It seems she knows a little too much since someone is taking shots at her...
Sometimes impulse buys pay off, and this book is one of them.
Well-written, well-paced, great characterization (the hero was just so 'wow', and though the heroine turned a bit annoying toward the end, I'm glad she wasn't whiny and swoony in the middle of all the action), wonderful action, good intrigue, nice romance...What more can I ask from a romantic suspense novel? I especially liked the new identity/new face ploy. And the fact she (or her subconscious) recognized him. Awww. Be still my romantic heart.
I'm looking forward to the next books in this series, hoping Jack's friend Levi gets his own story. And yeah I think, Wesley Burkhart, the big bad boss, deserves his own book as well....more