4.0 out of 5 stars -- another great Nordic crime fiction novel featuring nurse Nina Borg.
In this story, two Roma (Gypsy) boys discover a hidden cache...more4.0 out of 5 stars -- another great Nordic crime fiction novel featuring nurse Nina Borg.
In this story, two Roma (Gypsy) boys discover a hidden cache of items to sell in an old abadoned military post hospital basement. Because of their extreme poverty and in ignorance, they start a chain of events that involves Nina and a very interesting cast of new characters.
This second novel in the series is every bit as good as the first, and as is their specialty, the authors touch on some hot button topics: the social and political climate of Denmark and Hungary as well as other issues such as racial prejudice and illegal immigration. I really enjoyed it and think readers who like a good thriller will snap it up and turn the pages just as quickly as I did. Lots of action and believable characters. I can't wait to start #3 in the next day or so.
4.0 out of 5 stars -- Historical fiction about the wealthy Blackshaw family who live on an estate, Tyringham Park, in Ireland. The main character, Cha...more4.0 out of 5 stars -- Historical fiction about the wealthy Blackshaw family who live on an estate, Tyringham Park, in Ireland. The main character, Charlotte, is abused by her nanny and ignored by her mother. When Charlotte is 8 years old, her younger sister Victoria -- who is the favorite daughter -- goes missing one afternoon. The loss of Victoria shatters her family and changes Charlotte's life forever. Though she is talented on horseback and in painting, Charlotte cannot seem to escape her personal demons and desperately tries to obtain the love and happiness denied her. She is exiled to Australia with her new husband to avoid scandal, and it is there that she finally is granted her most desperate wish. When Charlotte returns to her family after several years gone, she has to deal with secrets, lies and betrayals that finally come to light.
I really enjoyed this novel and the shifts in time and perspective kept me glued to the pages seeing what would transpire next with the many interesting characters. I was empathetic toward Charlotte and very angry about several of the other persons in the story! The only thing that kept me from rating this higher was the ending -- which came suddenly and left many questions unanswered and dangling ends to several stories.
Thank you to NetGalley and Atria books for the e-book ARC to review.(less)
3.0 out of 5 stars - It is a rainy and stormy season in Philadelphia. A man is found with a railroad spike driven into his head in Priory Park, close...more3.0 out of 5 stars - It is a rainy and stormy season in Philadelphia. A man is found with a railroad spike driven into his head in Priory Park, close to the old shut down Delaware Valley State Hospital at Cold River which used to hold many insane and homeless patients. It closed its doors forever more than twenty years ago but a man who was perhaps a patient there, Luther Wade, never left, and roams the catacombs, sewer and storm drainage tunnels beneath the city, and now commits horrific crimes. He seems to be targeting people who once were associated with that old hospital. Why them? Why now? And is there a connection to a toddler found in the middle of the street one night? Detectives Kevin Byrne and Jessica Balzano, long time partners with the PDD, are assigned to the case.
This book was creepy and quite hard to follow at times with the jumps back and forth in time and the characters and their relationships to each other both past and present. I found it confusing but the excellent writing kept me glued to the pages trying to see what would happen next. To tell you the truth, I am still not quite sure I understand completely who did what and all that went on from the asylum to the current murders. The last couple of chapters helped tie it up a bit, but the end of the investigation still didn't completely explain everything to my satisfaction -- or maybe I need to reread with the ending still fresh in my mind.
I found the description of Cold River and the practice of psychiatric "care" there quite unnerving and mostly unbelievable, even for fiction. I know that conditions at some of those homes for the insane bordered on inhumane and bedlam, but I'd like to think that perhaps there were one or two good staff who had an idea of patients who were dying in hallways, giving birth in corridors, and escaping regularly.
I did like the book, but feel that the non-linear narrative made it hard to completely grasp all the motivations of the criminal(s) and their history. I liked the partnership of Jessica and Kevin and wonder how the author will handle that in the future. I loved the police procedural details as well. I'd read another by this author.
*Part of a series that I have not read previously. This seemed to stand alone but perhaps the book was a bit confusing to me because I didn't know all the previous history of the main characters. The ending of this one seems to leave room for yet another installment in the series.
Thank you to NetGalley and Mulholland Books for the eBook ARC to review.(less)
3.0 out of 5 stars - This is a fast read about the very public meltdown of a megastar and is just like a tabloid article you'd see on the magazine rac...more3.0 out of 5 stars - This is a fast read about the very public meltdown of a megastar and is just like a tabloid article you'd see on the magazine racks by the grocery checkout. Those in the limelight are denied privacy and often very basic desires to have a real life away from fans and reporters. Although it's fiction, I'm sure all readers will see the similarities in the story to current scandals and personal tragedies of those on the top tier of fame though in this book, we get to see the toll that all of that takes on the star and her family.
Kelsey is a music sensation when her cousin, Logan, comes to LA to act as her personal assistant. Close as children, a family rift separated them for years. As they work together to orchestrate Kelsey's very complicated touring lifestyle, other forces are at work to bring Kelsey to ruin. What is the price of fame and what will those Kelsey trusts do to keep themselves part of the money machine? Kelsey isn't allowed to run her own life nor can she avoid public exposure of every high and low moment as she tries to find love and happiness while staying on top of her career. Can Logan help Kelsey to have a normal marriage and motherhood or will the demands of the celebrity life and the news media destroy it all?
In the end, what do you owe another -- and can you save them -- and, at what cost?
I enjoyed this novel and would recommend it to anyone who is interested in the lifestyles of the rich and famous!
Thank you to NetGalley and Atria books for the ebook ARC to review. (less)
2.0 out of 5 stars - Doctor meets nurse. Instant relationship. Couple is terrorized by nurse's ex-husband (a strong, brilliant madman) intent on killi...more2.0 out of 5 stars - Doctor meets nurse. Instant relationship. Couple is terrorized by nurse's ex-husband (a strong, brilliant madman) intent on killing them both.
I found the story and the romance quite ridiculous. The overlong action scenes involving Adrian and Megan in peril almost got the best of me. As did their "true love at first sight" drivel and the unending descriptions of how beautiful Megan was ad nauseum. Most of the time she was having a panic attack, breakdown of terror, and freaking out. I kept reading only because of the interesting details about the laws and court scenes related to the not guilty by reason of insanity plea and the references to the psychiatric definitions of delusional thinking. I had originally picked this because I thought it was a medical thriller -- not so. The only true medical aspect is that the parties being stalked by the psycho were a surgeon and a nurse. I didn't like any of the characters nor did I find any of this believable. I found myself flipping through pages just to get through it.
The author uses a lot of cliches and repeats many of the same phrases time after time. Redundant, overly descriptive prose. Ricochets from one chase to the next...ho hum
Thank you to NetGalley and Thunder Lake Press for the e-book ARC to review.(less)
4+ stars -- Described as Nordic crime fiction, this is the best thriller I've read in ages. Quickly hooked, I could not put it down as I was introduce...more4+ stars -- Described as Nordic crime fiction, this is the best thriller I've read in ages. Quickly hooked, I could not put it down as I was introduced to Nina Borg, a Red Cross nurse who works in a camp for refugees and other desperate people. Nina is a middle-aged mother of two and wife to a man who finds her behavior often inexplicable. She has a history of rushing off to "save" people and immediately answers a call for help from her former best friend Karin. Karin gives Nina a key to a locker in the Copenhagen train station and when Nina lugs the heavy suitcase to her car and opens it to find an unconscious 3-year-old boy, the chills begin. Who put this child in the case and why -- just the first of many questions that Nina tries to answer as the other characters come into the action and the teasers to explain motivation. Loved it! Recommend to anyone looking for a suspenseful and gripping read. This was the first in a new series and I'm off now to start the second book.(less)
3.5 stars - Delicious literary buffet -- historical fiction featuring Edgar A. Poe and poetess Frances Osgood...did they or didn't they?
Set in New Yo...more3.5 stars - Delicious literary buffet -- historical fiction featuring Edgar A. Poe and poetess Frances Osgood...did they or didn't they?
Set in New York during the 1850s, this novel imagines a love affair between the mysterious author Poe who was married to his cousin, Virginia, and Fanny Osgood during a time when NEVERMORE was the rage and all the famous names in American literature would gather for gossip and readings at the homes of the wealthy elite.
I like reading about this time period in American history, the setting of New York, and just thinking about how all those great authors may have known one another socially. The drag in the book was the romance part! Frances is way overwrought over her doomed illicit love of Edgar and Poe is written as brooding, mysterious and somewhat cruel. Since it was fictional, I just got past that nonsense and enjoyed the other details.(less)
This story is one that ALMOST might have come from recent current event newspaper articles.
Sarah and Jennifer were best friends with...more3.0 out of 5 stars
This story is one that ALMOST might have come from recent current event newspaper articles.
Sarah and Jennifer were best friends with many of the same interests -- including the desire to protect themselves from danger to the point of compiling risk assessments and a "Never List' of things they simply would not expose themselves to. Their attention to the list and their safety is all for naught, however, when they are kidnapped by a man who kept them, and two other girls, captive in a cellar for 3 years. The girls were starved and tortured. Jennifer was kept locked in a box down there, and eventually was taken out of the cellar and likely murdered.
Flash forward years later. Jennifer is presumed dead and Sarah is trying to regain control of her life. Now an agoraphobic, she doesn't leave her apartment and is still not recovered. When she gets yet another taunting letter from her captor who is about to come up for parole, she makes a determined effort to face the past and try to recover Jennifer's body to get some closure and also to prevent the release of her captor. She leaves her apartment and relative safety to return to the scene of her imprisonment and also reunites with the other two victims for the first time since they all were rescued.
This story started out well but then became quite convoluted and completely unbelievable. The situations that Sarah put herself in required more suspension of disbelief than I was capable of. Many times I almost scoffed out loud at the perilous predicaments that she was all of a sudden able to manage. It was a good premise, but ultimately the tale was unsatisfying and ludicrous. I simply did not like any of the one-dimensional characters nor did I buy into how they reacted to the events that transpired once they decided to revisit what had happened to them and begin playing amateur detectives. Their decisions and activities made no sense given what they had been through. The story line takes a sudden twist adding in a new dimension and more flat characters to the original crime and I didn't buy into that grand scheme either.
All in all, although it was absorbing and entertaining at first, and I did finish it quickly, I was disappointed in the novel. As far as recommending the book, it would depend on the particular person, but the whole story just didn't ring realistic and true despite the fact that recent current events report on other cases of long term imprisonment and kidnapping that are much more chilling than this tale. I just didn't buy into Sarah being so damaged and then all of a sudden able to do all this investigation from her new-found willpower and without any police or FBI oversight. I would likely try the next book by the author, however. It might make a good choice for a book club if only to talk about whether or not one can actually predict every possibility for oneself enough to ever be completely SAFE.
Thank you to NetGalley and PENGUIN GROUP Viking for the E-book ARC to review.(less)
3.0 out of 5 stars - Predictable romantic suspense...
A family of three is abducted from their upscale Boston towhome. There's no blood, but there are...more3.0 out of 5 stars - Predictable romantic suspense...
A family of three is abducted from their upscale Boston towhome. There's no blood, but there are signs of struggle and a curious pile of personal items left behind on the granite kitchen counter. Obviously not a robbery, and no ransom contact from the kidnappers. The philandering husband and father, Justin Denbe, owns a multimillion dollar construction firm and spends a lot of time traveling while his wife, Libby, has taken up Vicodin as her new hobby. This is not the picture perfect family, even the 15-year-old daughter, Ashlyn, has secrets.
Enter Tessa Leoni - now working as a private investigator for Northledge Investigations, a company that is retained by Denbe Construction to manage security issues. She joins forces with other law enforcement agencies to figure out who, why, where and for what reason this family has been taken.
This book has characters from the author's previous books and though it works OK for someone like me who has not read all the other novels, there is obviously some backstory here, not fully explained, that would have provided more insight. and perhaps engaged me more. I'm sure fans of Lisa Gardner will appreciate this additional story.
The narrative shifts in point of view from Tessa to Libby. There is plenty of action and the story moves along at a fast pace that kept me entertained even as I suspended disbelief a few times.
Thank you to Goodreads for the complimentary copy through First Reads.(less)