I won a copy of this through the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program. Thank you LT ER and thank you Crown Publishing!
I really enjoyed this book and h...moreI won a copy of this through the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program. Thank you LT ER and thank you Crown Publishing!
I really enjoyed this book and have to admit to getting upset with the hubs when he would talk instead of letting me finish the book. One of those great books that you want to take the day off of work, put some early jazz on Pandora, and read.
This book cover New Orleans history from 1890-1920. In thirty years you would have one potential serial killer and potential Mafia, rise and destruction of the vice district called Storyville, and the birth of jazz. It was a very busy 30 years.
In addition, you saw racial segregation go from being fairly open with the octoroon balls and Storyville's colored girls to New Orleans falling in line with the rest of the south.
For as much history and events that happened in 30 years, the book doesn't feel heavy, staid, or dry. New Orleans is brought to life and I just wonder if we could see the way Storyville as the way it was-would it be that bad to modern eyes?
Loved this book and am looking forward to picking up more by this author. If you want to know more about New Orleans history, Storyville, of the birth of jazz this is a great introduction. (less)
Solid but Gruesome Although, with Sandford that's kind of normal.
So, Davenport's back and he's wrapping up a case that has shades of Bernie Madoff. Me...moreSolid but Gruesome Although, with Sandford that's kind of normal.
So, Davenport's back and he's wrapping up a case that has shades of Bernie Madoff. Meanwhile, two young lovers discover a horrific smell that leads to the discovery of bodies in a cistern.
Usually with Sandford I get to spend several days in Davenport's crazy world. I ate this one up like Turkish delight. Quick pacing, great plot, and terrific story. A serial killer who's been killing for 20+ years isn't going to be a fast catch unless caught red handed. This protagonist made Davenport think.
I have to warn you, this one felt just a little disturbing at times. This was the book that I decided I had enough of murder, rape, gloom, and serial killers. Totally time for some sunshine and happiness.
If you love Davenport, you're going to love this one!(less)
Visiting Japan Well, this book was just a ray of gloom and doom.
Basic synopsis: Lucie Blackman was a British gal who went to Japan with her best frien...moreVisiting Japan Well, this book was just a ray of gloom and doom.
Basic synopsis: Lucie Blackman was a British gal who went to Japan with her best friend to serve as hostess. Being paid to drink and make small talk seemed like an easy way to make good money to pay off debts. Instead, she instead ran into a serial rapist who ended up killing her.
I can't imagine being thousands of miles away from a loved one who is missing. Trying to figure out the Japanese criminal justice, culture, and media must have been daunting. As more details were revealed, the main suspect was revealed to be a man who worked hard to hide details of life.
The mystery of who the killer really is really makes this disconcerting. While we know a lot of his alias, and the name he used most often-Joji Obara-and the name he was born with-there still feels like we're missing something. He doesn't reveal himself to anyone and details of his life is hard to come by.
The only thing he reveals are in the mass amounts of diaries, journals, lists and videotape evidence found in his multiple residences. This is why he was convicted of so many rape charges-he kept the evidence. I was really surprised in some ways that he hadn't escalated to serial killer, however he found a way to commit the crimes without anyone knowing while preying on the marginalized. Great reminder about how these guys think-it's not always about getting caught but about satisfying their need without the cops knowing.
The Japanese police are set up as sort of incompetent in the book. I think that they were just woefully unequipped to handle the level of sociopath that Obara presented. As someone who doesn't know anything about Japanese criminal justice system, the look at a totally different system was interesting. The fact they have court once a month was totally odd to the American way of doing things.
If you like true crime, then yes pick this book up. It's one of the books I'm going to be thinking about for a some time to come.(less)
Undercover Corrections Officer <p>Ted Conovers tried to get enough material to write about New York prisons but kept getting the run around. So...moreUndercover Corrections Officer <p>Ted Conovers tried to get enough material to write about New York prisons but kept getting the run around. So he decided to become a corrections officer. After a long waiting period, he completes the Academy and works at Sing Sing prison for one year. This is his experience. </p> <p> </p> <p>The Academy is set up to be very militaristic and in hindsight, run just like a prison. Upon graduation, he and most of his class is sent to Sing Sing prison in <span>Ossining, </span>New York. Sing Sing is located just outside of New York and sees a lot of Riker's Island inmates come through. The prison is crowded with gang bangers, drug dealers, and violent criminals. There's also an understaffed or barely staffed correction officers to handle the population.</p> <p> </p> <p>However, I really expected it to be much worse than it was. No riots, just a few inmate incidents that play off like a oversized two-year old refusing to do what they are told. For the most part, it seems like the guys there knew the score and for the most part did the time. </p> <p> </p> <p>The guards, and especially the ones at Sing Sing, were for me the most interesting aspect. The ones who had been there any length of time, seemed to feed off of the violence and apathy that was in the air. Because so many new guards are sent to Sing Sing, the inmates never get used to one guard and one way of doing things. </p> <p> </p> <p>I was really intrigued by the fact that Ossinging has really built itself up around the prison. Nothing like convicted criminals as your neighbors. The fact that the city would rather the prison move so they can have the prime waterfront property amuses me.</p> <p> </p> <p>Conovers includes a lot of history in the later portion of the book. Using inmate labor to build the prison was really interesting. Along with a couple of short bios on well known wardens. What I had never really thought about was the fact that this prison was built in 1826-it's nearly two hundred years old!</p> <p> </p> <p>Overall, this was a really good look into the prison system in the US and specifically, Sing Sing. If you're interested in prisons, corrections or history of prisons, check this out. </p>(less)
First off, thank you to St Martin's Press and LibraryThing Early Reviewers for a copy of this book. Although it arrived after being published, I appre...moreFirst off, thank you to St Martin's Press and LibraryThing Early Reviewers for a copy of this book. Although it arrived after being published, I appreciate the opportunity to get my hands on a copy. Thank you!
I love Sarah Addison Allen. I fell in love with her first book and look forward to anything and everything she writes. When I heard her new book was delayed due to health issues, I tried my best to wait patiently. Although, I have to admit not very successfully!
Unfortunately, I just didn't fall in love with this book. The magical element of the story just didn't feel like they were as developed as in her other books. I just wanted the magical element here to feel more important to the story and to have that element wove a little deeper into the story line. One of the magical elements plays a big role in the end, but I wanted a deeper understanding.
And perhaps that's my problem in a nutshell. I felt like the magic just wasn't explained as well as I wanted. I wanted more of the magic and instead it was just a small wisp of smoke that played throughout the book
I enjoyed the actual story of Lost Lake and a nearly lost great-aunt. The small community in the cabins, the small town, and the intersection of lives and one last chance to have happiness for many in the story was beautiful written.
In the end, I have to say this was good, but just not up to her best. (less)
Love Ann Rule-read her books through high school. I also didn't date or hang with boys-thank you Ann Rule! It's been a while since she's released a f...more Love Ann Rule-read her books through high school. I also didn't date or hang with boys-thank you Ann Rule! It's been a while since she's released a full size book so when I saw this on the return cart I was interested.
Basic synopsis is that a man was found dead in a new yellow Tracker on the small island of Whidby in Washington. 10 years later, five states later; cops and prosecutors finally get both their man and woman.
The story here is a bit convoluted and there's a feeling that despite knowing at the end of the book who did it-motive remains elusive. You're left with a vague feeling that the wife initiated the murder. However, there's no evidence at all to support that supposition and the case has an empty ending.
It seems like it's a case full of people-victim, perpetrators, family involved-that are dark, broken, hurt, and almost unlikable to some degree.
Not her best work and not something I could recommend unless you're an Ann Rule Fan(less)
Having loved Crooked Letter Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin, I knew as soon as I saw this on the return cart that this would be a good read. I am reall...more Having loved Crooked Letter Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin, I knew as soon as I saw this on the return cart that this would be a good read. I am really glad I went ahead and picked it up instead of just adding it to my never-ending Mt TBR.
It's 1927 and life close to the mighty Mississippi is a rather scary place to be. The rain that seems to never-end has flooded the Mississippi to record levels and threatens to top the levies stretched along the river.
In small town Hobnob, Mississippi bootlegger Jesse Holliver and his moonshining wife, Dixie Clay. have almost bigger problems than the Mississippi River. There are two missing Revenuer agents and two more have arrived in town to investigated.
There's so much more to this story. Like the fact Jesse is never going to win husband of the year award. Or the orphaned baby that ends up in Dixie Clay's arms thanks to one of the new Revenuers.
Will the river flood or will it be blown up by saboteurs? Will Dixie Clay and the baby survive the oncoming flood?
The writing here is so beautiful. The story just flows-dipping into the characters pasts just enough to give you a full understanding. I just loved this book.
The only issue I have is that one of the characters supposedly drowns. Well, I've seen enough Hollywood movies to know a sequel is coming. Although, I don't think that will happen. The death just didn't feel final enough for me. Too much Hollywood.
I loved it. I also recommend you get a copy.(less)
I've been working on clearing my own shelves and when I don't have anything pressing I grab something. I wanted something that wasn't too big or lengt...moreI've been working on clearing my own shelves and when I don't have anything pressing I grab something. I wanted something that wasn't too big or lengthy and this definitely hit the spot. The subject is heavy. I suspect most of us have either read it or read a synopsis by now. So I won't rehash and just jot a few things down.
As someone who is deeply sensitive, introspective, and aware there's a larger picture we all exist in-I identified more with Morrie than Mitch. Not that Mitch is a horrible person. Mitch simply got the reminder he needed that life is short, and that we need to follow the cliches. You know: dance in the rain, play sick from work and go to an afternoon matinee, watch old romantic comedies while staying in bed all day one Saturday afternoon (preferably will raining).
While I understand why some find this life changing, it was just okay for me. (less)
Well, I've been done with this book for a while now. For a good week after reading this, I was still thinking about the book. I have to admit that my...more Well, I've been done with this book for a while now. For a good week after reading this, I was still thinking about the book. I have to admit that my religious beliefs include belief in healing through prayer. So to read about Christian sects that exclusive believe in healing and that seeing a doctor is a lack of faith resulted in quite the interesting internal dialogue. The downside to let this book marinate in my mind, is that the less I thought of it, the less of a priority it became to review this book. So here we are nearly two weeks later. And I really want to write something wonderful encouraging people to pick this book up and read it. Instead, the magic of the book has faded enough that not even my notes and post-it's stuck in the book is enough to make me remember.
So a brief synopsis-faith healing sects using religious umbrella laws to avoid prosecution for either child abuse, manslaughter, or homicide. With work by local cops, prosecution, and a national advocate who helped roll back these umbrella laws; you can no longer say that you oppose doctors on a religious basis for children.
The book focuses on both the advocate and the hard work rolling back religious rights laws in America, and a local team of cops and prosecutors who take on the status quo to get justice for these kids.
Heart wrenching with the ability to induce both tears and anger; this book is a must if you're interested in religion in politics and true crime.(less)
I've heard so many good things about this book, but it just wasn't my cup or tea...or blood. Time to move onto something I actually want to pick up an...moreI've heard so many good things about this book, but it just wasn't my cup or tea...or blood. Time to move onto something I actually want to pick up and read.(less)