Gladdy 75 narrates usual drives of gang from their Ft Lauderdale Florida condos. She convinces detective Morrie Langford into an autopsy of Greta KronGladdy 75 narrates usual drives of gang from their Ft Lauderdale Florida condos. She convinces detective Morrie Langford into an autopsy of Greta Kronk after suspicious heart attacks of Selma and Francie before their birthdays. Meanwhile, younger Harriet has day off, chauffeurs girls, in a rush for Jewish tradition, to cremate the Catholic Kronk. (view spoiler)[ First clue Harriet is villain. (hide spoiler)] "My face must be purple" p 177.
One side-plot has slow-witted gardener Denny Ryan with calendar of everyone's birthdays, hear his abusive late mother Maureen on phone at ten nightly. We guess someone is fooling him, not details.
Millie with Alzenheimer's spies unseen on Harriet's mother. Esther Feder "walks when nobody looks" p 182, gets up and dances around her wheelchair. We believe cripple is faking because Millie's new Spanish helper Yolanda has enough English/ Yiddish. (view spoiler)[ Second clue Harriet kills others to distract from final target Esther. Miserly Esther hides $400K savings, but greedy Harriet is in a hurry to inherit "a lot of incentive .. Year after year" p 266. (hide spoiler)]
So many names gives me the confusion. Cop 'Morrie' Morgan Langford has handsome dad Jack. Jack declines to cook full English breakfast "bangers .. blood sausage". "We'll live on love" p 296."At my age, it's too late to start over" p 188. Not x-rated. I haven't decided whether to continue series.
"Good show!" chorus the Canadians p 287. Snowbirds are not Brits, despite slang. Is earlier snobbery characterization error too?
"This isn't our usual neighborhood theater where everyone talks incessantly throughout every movie" p 215. Aren't viewers accustomed to DVDs, watching movies at home on TVs, gabbing?
Glad guesses partly wrong, partly right. "Denny's gone bad" p 216. She tries to leave cinema, like baby ducklings the whole gang follows her out to parking lot. She locked keys in car. Will they be too late?
"Exhumed the bodies of your friends Selma and Francie .. Poisoned, both of them" p 228. Denny is "being evaluated at the hospital" p 228. "It's too damn pat .. It's not over" p 238. Nightmares about the garden bed of white flowering oleander, distill into the answer. But how to prove? (view spoiler)[
"They were a present" p 248. Denny remembers who gave him oleander plants -- Harriet. Sound system is reversed to broadcast her confession everywhere. Police save Glad from Harriet. (hide spoiler)]
Glad tells her troops to "bring weapons. That's all you could come up with? Bella holds up her flyswatter proudly. "There's a lot of flies who wouldn't agree with you" p 286. Sometimes the little jokes are the most fun. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Juliette, icy blue-eyed blonde, first of three beauties under protector Earl of Sinclair, ends up with Duke of Pelham. His fiancée Eliza gambles too dJuliette, icy blue-eyed blonde, first of three beauties under protector Earl of Sinclair, ends up with Duke of Pelham. His fiancée Eliza gambles too deep, steals 'diamonds' from villain Lucifer, claims she hid valuables with Pelham. Only Juliette sees Lucifer throw Eliza over the balcony; the dead body vanishes.
"To kiss anyone -- a day after her murder would be callous indeed .. Momentary laps of reason. Your manly charms overwhelmed me" .. "Bloody hell but you're frank" p 140. Mix murder, mystery, passion, in era of Napoleon secrets. (view spoiler)[
'Diamonds in the Rough' are a list of four men, English spies, deep undercover, "one of whom is already dead" p 353. (hide spoiler)] The identity of Lucifer carries over to the sequel. I look forward to the rest of the series.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Plot is predictable. Orphan makes good, finds home, security, love. http://www.madoc.ca/ Real place. Patterning after real geography and history dragsPlot is predictable. Orphan makes good, finds home, security, love. http://www.madoc.ca/ Real place. Patterning after real geography and history drags down for me.
Madoca 14 knows Annoc 16, her cruel mistress of five years, will be the Dragon Seer, chosen once in a generation" p 7. "Eena, the oldest .. was blind and failing" p 7. The dragon obeys Madoca, flies toward Annoc. (view spoiler)[ Madoca is chosen. (hide spoiler)]
"Silence fell like a blessing" p 168 after throat rattles all night. Eena, in a drawn-out "tears spilled" p 168 scene, finally dies. This is sample of peak action. Maps at start presage details of place that accumulate, too many for me.
Madoca recommends Garit 16, her best friend, "red-haired boy" p 4, for delicate metal-work. Could have been a romance until she starts off badly, argues with Tollie 18 p 26.
Tollie is always kind to slaves; his mother was a slave. Tollie refuses her advance "I will not handfast with you" p 317. (view spoiler)[
A ceremony like engagement but with marital privileges, "Handfasting is for those who are uncertain. When you are ready, Madoca, we will marry" p 317. (hide spoiler)]
"You'll fast for two days, then travel to the Speaking Place, a special chamber on Ancestors Isle, to see if the ancestors will speak to you". Some visit "three times before they receive their key .. They will test you .. With riddles .. That's why the dragons are always riddling" Madoca p 135. The Vikings are coming with an evil seer; of course Madoca gets done in a hurry.
"An ancient chant .. Try to fathom the nature of time .. a spiral .. time shall bend .. Once and once again" p 115, 272 draws her near and guides her. A slow sweet poem about the spiral of time repeats.
Is "shattered stone .. A vision of the future or just a fear?" p 73. Of a possible future, of course. She has visions of Viking attacks from the start.
"But those who wear them unaware will violate no rule" p 293. Nechtan, only senior seer now, refuses to wear belt woven by Madoca, claiming magic breaks his agreement with Vikings for battle. Tollie and others will be safe.
"Madoca was sure the feel of blood would never leave" washing her hands p 300. We see a battle only in the tent for the wounded. From a distance, enclosed, we are removed from the middle of the action. (view spoiler)[
"The breath left his body" p 302. Nechtan dies t-o-o s-l-o-w-l-y. People pack up and escape well ahead of enemy. "When the Vikings discover we've left them no one to enslave, they'll be furious" p 202.
Madoca magics most dragons to safety in a different time. Some are left behind. (hide spoiler)] Leaves possibility of sequels open, not for me. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
'Mortal Coils' is a bit of melody Eliot picks up from 'Louis Piper' p 203. So? I don't like anybody much. For most of book, Dad is "Pied Piper of Hame'Mortal Coils' is a bit of melody Eliot picks up from 'Louis Piper' p 203. So? I don't like anybody much. For most of book, Dad is "Pied Piper of Hamelin" p 196 to me, tale illustrated later in manuscript "pristine work of a monk" p 196 "Mythica Improbiba" p 197. (view spoiler)[ Helpful recovered (or pretending?) alcoholic happens to hang around nearby corner, not hot scary Infernal Satan. (hide spoiler)]
Mum is obvious. Not her vicious hatreds, of succumbing to male, of messenger bringing unwanted news. She acts thoughtless, childish, careless. (view spoiler)[
Gran, Immortal goddess, metaphorically spits on former love, her feelings, his body. Murderous Audrey slices throat of Driver, Welmann. I'm sorry to lose Welmann so soon. (hide spoiler)]
Welmann "black-coffee guy" p 63, "closest thing he'd [Robert] had to a father" p 48, is caring, good guy. Rob is keen on Fiona and vice versa. Is young love excuse for Rob to recover from grief so fast?
"Birthday" Section 1. "Two Little Nobodies" Ch 1. With such intriguing titles, I would prefer Table of Contents up front. I soon ignore confusing footnotes that foresee home destroyed, major events. Ick for predestination, ordained by (divine) Fate.
Author mixes myths, names, of divinities, invents designations, I promptly and permanently forget. Premise, style, Welmann - I like. Generally people may have some redeeming traits, but I don't have to like them, and don't.
"Eliot Post and his sister, Fiona, would be fifteen tomorrow and nothing interesting had ever happened to them" p 13. No parents, "no pictures" p 35. The elders isolate teens from peers and mundane world, constrain their activities.
'Grandmother' does home schooling, tapes up Rules: "Rule 89 .. no shampoo", music, technology, "Rule 55: .. fantasy" p 34, "Rule 11 .. artistic methods", not much of anything. Cee Cecelia great-gran "her sense of smell and taste had dried up some time around the Second World War" p 53 concocts lye cleansers, herbal remedies, inedible treats, sews costumes too strange to be clothing. "Not interesting"?
Do unexpected progeny mean "the end of the long truce between the clans" p 209, open break of "truce between his people and ours" p 45? Rather than kill the pair outright, Immortals design three heroic Trials along classic lines. I give up trying to connect their times and ours.
Similarly, Infernals offer three Temptations. Boy and girl are sent to distract targets. (view spoiler)[ Suddenly girl, trying to be faithful to Eliot under torture, turns into Jezebel? (hide spoiler)] Fiona gets addicted to a bottomless box of incomparably fine chocolates, spiked by 'Sealiah, Queen of the Poppies' p 132.
"She threw the dice .. Destiny was writ" p 138. I can't remember spellings, let alone 'Abby, the Destroyer' who I connect to India's Shiva, or sort out whether choices override detestable Fate. (view spoiler)[ Fiona does toss candy box, but late withdrawal has problems. (hide spoiler)] Eating only drugged sweets for days, Fiona gets dangerously dehydrated and malnourished.
"The two families were like the Capulets and the Montagues" p 140 parents. Big revelation. Bah.
Does Cee hold soft feelings Audrey forgoes to be strongest possible protector? Reminds me of how unhappy true orphan Harry Potter https://www.goodreads.com/series/4517... was. Why don't guardians see?
Cee's "vaporous spider" p 209 from teacup divination reminds me of Harry Potter's Prisoner of Azkaban, where Sybill Potter in deep voice predicts 'Death'. Is sequel worth finding out?
"You will learn that musical instruments are not the only things that can be played .. You will be stronger than I am when you grow up" p 203. Louis gives Eliot violin. Eliot instantly plays any instrument or tune. Unbelievable tricks, poof, interrupt more than ease action along. (view spoiler)[ By drawing incantation lines, chanting spell when kids pass through alley, Louis gets all his powers back, regains classy look and outlook. Snazzy. Him I could like? (hide spoiler)]
Fiona "supposed to [kill].. would not take a life without a better reason" p 233. They need to vanquish trope giant crocodile beast in sewer for Trial 2. Heroes are warm-hearted, do not kill; villains kill everyone in the way. Which are the twins? Hint: remember the lion with the thorn in his paw? (view spoiler)[
Fiona "set down the shotgun .. to get the metal shard out" p 233. Beal failed to kill beast before. Croc accepts their help. Trial is won. (hide spoiler)] Croc could make fine comeback?
First trial is "crazy guy in a carnival", third is precious apple in Area 51 "hundreds of guards with guns on a military base" p 429 US Army. I get confused by mish-mash where book actions are forced into myth outlines. There are too many threads for me, now and left dangling.
"It felt good" p 512 Eliot throws strange red dice to decide "even .. Fiona first .. odd .. help Louis .. forever changed Eliot's world" p 513. (view spoiler)[ He throws seven. (hide spoiler)] That's how the plot goes. Arbitrary seeming hops I do not like.
I like how youngsters outwit adults. Or do they? Some grownups (from both sides?) sneak in artifacts, aid, harm? 'Board' is 'League'? or is it? or do I care? I haven't decided whether to continue this exercise in cleverness (I mean that in a good way).
Hard to rate. Usually I like people who live throughout, retain questions I want answers for. Louis and fine collection of eccentricities are unforgettable highlights of reaching the end.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
In NYC rising temperatures, team finds who tossed real estate mogul Matthew Starr over sixth floor balcony. Condo doorkeeper Gerald Buckley booked offIn NYC rising temperatures, team finds who tossed real estate mogul Matthew Starr over sixth floor balcony. Condo doorkeeper Gerald Buckley booked off shift. NYPD Nikki Heat, journalist shadow Jameson Rook, cops 'Roach' = Raley + Ochoa, Medical Examiner Lauren Parry are like TV Castle Kate Beckett, writer Richard 'Rick' Castle, Kevin Ryan + Javier Esposito, ME Lanie Parish.
Wife Kimberly Starr and money man Noah Paxton both knew Matthew was broke, insurance lapsed. Philanderer keen on Swedish nanny Agda for Matt Jr was "driving his company into the ground with expensive habits - gambling, "high-end call girls" p 33, and cocaine.
Bookie Miric's muscle Pochenko assaults Nikki at home. Pochenko has ring that leaves "punch bruises" marks p 65. Barbara Deerfield, well-admired Sotheby appraiser, turns up strangled. Her camera shows up. (view spoiler)[
Ring is - on Pochenko's hand by condo surveillance cameras, - on Matthew's bruises by autopsy, left on Barb's car floor. Pochenko dies from .25 "small caliber" p 170 close to head by somebody he trusted. Gerald hides Barb's camera.
Paxton took one painting from Starr walls to storage unit every couple of months, replaced by forgery, didn't sell. He sent Pochenko to kill Matt, Barb, attack Nikki. He shot Pochenko. (hide spoiler)]
Too often, Jamie disobeys orders, "sheepishly" p 189 gets taken hostage or blocks cop shots. Nikki here aka TV Kate Beckett likes Jamie aka Castle for same reason years later. He brings out her fun side.
Power out, Nikki leads Jamie to bed by candlelight. Here Nikki and Jamie rush into bed faster than years anticipation on TV where Rick teases Kate, and vice versa. "Doable" is how Lauren admires Jamie to Nikki. Bits of humor here, more on TV.
Typo: p 106 "window shears" are sheers = transparent filmy curtains; shears are scissors ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
"Resistance is futile" p 171 says Skagra to Time Lady Romana. Well-worn line makes me smile instead of taking seriously. In typical Dr Who TV episode"Resistance is futile" p 171 says Skagra to Time Lady Romana. Well-worn line makes me smile instead of taking seriously. In typical Dr Who TV episode - aliens attack, Dr Who runs, humans die. Clues accumulate till Dr Who can vanquish chief villain.
"We've got to give him more power!" p 325. Refrain echoes during Leonard Nimoy memorial marathon. Chorus of original Star Trek crew refrain with Scotty's Engineering.
"Unusually sunny Saturday afternoon in October" p 8. Cambridge. Doddering Prof Chronotis questions "One lump or two?" before "Sugar?" p 15. A time-travel TARDIS hides "safely in my pocket .. disguised as a book mark" p 360. And he has another secret. (view spoiler)[ Easy to guess that Chronotis is Salyavin. (hide spoiler)]
Shada is prison where worst Ancient Outlaws sleep. Salyavin, feared for ability to control minds, escapes, makes "jailers forget there was ever a jail in the first place" p 304, details drift lost in legend. Skagra wants power of "the Great Mind Outlaw" p 304. Idiot Chris blurts secret. (view spoiler)[
Eyes of slaves, even K-9, go black. Girl ship destroys Skaags, enemy constructed soldiers, inadvertently wrecks planet. Time to run again. (hide spoiler)]
In "one final chance to impress" p 9 departing Clare Keightley into staying, Chris Parsons 27 borrows books, but another volume slips in. Romance side-plot. Gazing at symbols brings back memories "very vividly. He could swear that as he looked at the book, the book was somehow looking back at him" p 26.
Gallifrey Time Lord Dr Who #4 "threw off his hat, coat, and scarf .. tall powerful frame" p 20 and punts Time Lady Romana downriver till pole gets stuck. Under bridge, both hear "distorted babble of inhuman voices" "humans - or ghosts - very quietly ... Screaming" p 38.
Genius Think Tank minds torn from bodies reside in metallic sphere held by villain. Skagra is "early thirties .. jagged scar that ran across the right side of his face" p 34. "If people chose to wear ridiculously long multicoloured scarves and to turn up on occasions decades apart not looking any older, it was none of his [porter Wilkin's] business" p 33. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Modernized John Christopher's Tripod series, where boy joins fight against aliens exerting mind control https://www.goodreads.com/review/show.... GoryModernized John Christopher's Tripod series, where boy joins fight against aliens exerting mind control https://www.goodreads.com/review/show.... Gory brawls build to local battle. Setup is clumsy, but asks for answers worth exploring. Hero has standard to reach from cowardly start, to girl I like better now. Kids have deadline to puberty, then struggle and weapons change. I read serieses for ages above and below mine, but disremember seeing any overlap niches.
Starts like a video game, where kids take on weapon set by climbing inside giant insectoid suits. Ethan Blackwood 12 dons stainless steel soccer frame, ignores Grizzlies coach tactic "Superior long-range strategy wins over superior immediate tactics" p 73, 209, hydraulically kicks "300' from goal" p 6.
Out of place teens Madison and Felix kidnap Ethan, show him wasteland, minerals harvested, protected by drones, giant insectoid monsters. Fifty years ago, alien Ch'zar Collective absorbed human minds above ground. "Some were far underground and were shielded from their mind powers" p 32 and must stay below after puberty to stay separate, safe.
"Automatic cameras .. see everything. All the time" p 74. "All the kids were prisoners, watched 24 hours a day" p 75. Dad advises "Not so much a lie, but not giving away any real information either .. how to lie". Ethan's "suit of armor" is "a wasp" p 54 whose telepathic bond threatened to supersede his own will. "In some cases the insect mind actually dominated" p 205. Madison zooms inside a dragonfly; Felix in a beetle. I don't know what an "I. C. E. system" stands for and don't care.
Twice Ethan runs away from truth. False suburban neighborhoods feed high grade potential leaders to Collective. Upper 'schools' are fake. Ant lions "spewed out stinking gray-green ichor" p 179. Ethan rips off a locust head. "Goo and brains squirted over the school courtyard with a wet splat" p 185.
"Two enemy rhinoceros beetles lumbered toward" him p 185. "A dozen rhinoceros beetles landed in a V-formation .. were Resisters in midnight blue armor .. A swarm of yellow-and-black-striped Infiltrator wasps engaged enemy red wasps and drones" p 186. Beetle is Resister, or not; wasp is Infiltrator, or not.
"A giant midnight blue rhinoceros beetle landed. It had better be friendly" p 189. How does fighter tell their team? Not even vision screen with computer lights colored for friend or foe.
Ethan has "run away from battle .. then rushed into a fight against direct orders" p 207. Ethan's sister Emma, on fast track, among those headed to out-of-town higher 'school' aboard zeppelins are bait for Resister attack. After Colonel Winter rejects his battle plan, Ethan heads in alone, charged with treason on return. (view spoiler)[
Ethan is "most reckless pilot" but can "coax and ICE suit into stealth mode for hours at a time" p 198. Ethan's suit was from Madison's older brother. Roger wanted one last mission, but the wasp suit rejected the grown-up above ground. Resisters follow Ethan according to his plan and take down a zeppelin stuffed with "maybe a hundred artilllery ant lions camouflaged" p 191.
"Two pilots and six suits injured .. one [Ethan's] Infiltrator wasp in critical condition" p 196. "His school was leveled" p 189, so some children see "titanic robots .. fighting a war .. questions .. The Ch'zar couldn't cover it up with convenient lies" p 192. Wanna bet? Film special effects gone wrong? Military tests misdirected?
"Our wish that one day we'll all be reunited under the open sky" p 202. Blackwood family, smaller than 8-9 kids 'usual', vanishes, leaves note. Could (my) italicized phrase be clue to follow? (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Miranda Garrett 28, widow "nearly 3 years" p 13 thinks "the key to handling [thrice-engaged] Lord Stillwell" to rebuild burned-out Fairborough Hall isMiranda Garrett 28, widow "nearly 3 years" p 13 thinks "the key to handling [thrice-engaged] Lord Stillwell" to rebuild burned-out Fairborough Hall is "bringing the horse to water". "Holding his head under?" "If necessary" p 46 .. "allow him to believe his architect is the elusive Mr Tempest" p 47, "silent investor" p 48 partner in her late husband's firm. Extra Bonus is "three fiancées .. he had planned to love" p 137. (view spoiler)[ "I will not be your second fiancé .. But I will be your last" p 350. Win counters her proposal. (hide spoiler)]
"Bianca huffed p 228. "Lady Waterston huffed" p 296. Even in bonus, fiancée Lucille "She huffed" p 395 when Win affectionately calls her 'Lucy', "Win huffed" p 412 (why don't his third sweet fiancée Caroline bidding farewell to her beloved Lawrence hear Win huff?), "He huffed" p 370. Miranda does her share. "She huffed" p 147. "She huffed" p 188. "Win huffed" p 40. "He watched her for a moment, then huffed" p 188. "He huffed" p 160. "He huffed" p 204. "He huffed" p 236. The plenitude of huffs overwhelms. Am I caught in poorly constructed piglet houses attacked by fairy tale wolf?
"'While I may be many things, I am not a fool.' Even if Lady Garrett disagreed" p 42. "And is Lord Stillwell a progressive sort?" "Lord Stillwell is a twit." "Be that as it may. . ." Clara choked back a laugh. "He is a twit with a great deal of money." "Which makes him a valued client although no less of a twit" p 43. From sister Camille who knows him well, and Miranda who just met him, poor Win gets insulted all round. The more "twit" is repeated, the more likely the opinion is to be believed, especially by readers. "You are an annoying, obstinate, complicated, twit of a man and I will not allow you to stalk out of my life in a huff of foolish pride and misunderstanding" p 348. "Winfield huffed in frustration" p 349.
"She was wrong about Winfield Elliot. He was indeed a twit after all. And for that he'd have to pay" p 153. His offer for bonus "If the Midsummer Ball can be held at Fairborough" as usual p 147 has such an obvious loophole. No surprises.
"I am a woman of business" p 245. Naive Miranda provokes shock from older brother Adrian. (view spoiler)[ Adrian funded her as silent Mr Tempest p 285. (hide spoiler)] "I have never been as stupid as you have thought I was". Miranda's 'woman of business' reminds me of first time I heard, got away with misunderstanding "working women" phrase in a hotel applied to streetwalkers off the street.
"One never knows how anyone might react. Honesty is certainly not worth the risk" p 193. Confusion over Bianca and other Millworth series roles lessens after I don't try to place everyone, just enjoy banter, exaggeration for humor. Miranda "resolved", will confess architect work to her family. "Sooner rather than later. Not today and probably not tomorrow, but definitely sooner" p 83. Men do dominate in 2000 century, not as overt as 1800s. "The only reason that you are doing it [being architect] in a clandestine manner is because men have driven you to it. Men rule the world and men make the rules. Fortunately for us, the vast majority of them are idiots. And while one shouldn't usually take advantage of those less fortunate, men are the exception" p 193.
"I do think complete and total honesty is without doubt the worst thing that can happen to two people" p 324 future mother-in-law Lady Fairborough advises Miranda.
Lord Fairborough "chuckled" at his son. "Marrying a woman who is nearly as intelligent as you are is both challenging and infuriating. It won't be easy. But it is a great deal of fun" p 303.
Some attitudes might be ahead of their times. I can overlook little annoyances, "huffing" repetition. Overall author Victoria Alexander gives fun happy love-struck couples who provoke and thoroughly enjoy each other.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Humor and twists in several stories pulls up overall rating.
4* 1 A Questionable Client by Ilona Andrews 1 - Kate Daniels guards shifter Saimen, less tHumor and twists in several stories pulls up overall rating.
4* 1 A Questionable Client by Ilona Andrews 1 - Kate Daniels guards shifter Saimen, less trustworthy than the enemy Russians (view spoiler)[ He posed as wife Russian son believes shifter kidnapped. Son suicides. Kate could ask resultant cat any question, would pay for magic, so only asks if it wants milk. (hide spoiler)] Fun and scary surprises. 4* 2 Even Hand by Jim Butcher 47 - John Marcone crime lord fights water demon with defenses against Dresden because his honor draws line, protects children. (view spoiler)[ John wins, but takes back stolen item from messenger. (hide spoiler)] John isn't fooled, but we have to be without details. 4* 3 The Beacon by Shannon K. Butcher 81 - Hereditary fighter faces monster that killed his father and town, plus little girl that attracts monster 4 Even a Rabbit Will Bite by Rachel Caine 121 - Last Dragonslayer faces last dragon (view spoiler)[ Dragon posed as apprentice. Slayer, kept alive centuries by dragon's blood, poisons both, regrets killing. (hide spoiler)] Memorable surprise. Bittersweet tragedy. 4* 5 Dark Lady by P.N. Elrod 157 - Vampire nightclub owner Jack Fleming promises radio to resident ghost (view spoiler)[ after she helps foil attack (hide spoiler)] 1* 6 Beknighted by Deidre Knight 205 - Artist tries to free knight painted in real gold. Too confusing. 2* 7 Shifting Star by Vicki Pettersson 245 - Skamar, Tibetan for star, newly created tulpa, fights another vicious male of Tulpa. Strange. 4* 8 Rookwood & Mrs King by Lilith Saintcrow 285 - Vampire private eye is hired by wife to kill her vampire husband. Twists. 2* 9 God's Creatures by Carrie Vaughn 325 - Cormac follows werewolf to convent school (view spoiler)[ kills nun. (hide spoiler)] Sad. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
How did warriors battle before? How could their weapons affect us now? Scary. I'd never heard of paleopathology, ancient bioweapons. Author Thor makesHow did warriors battle before? How could their weapons affect us now? Scary. I'd never heard of paleopathology, ancient bioweapons. Author Thor makes history Fascinating, real. I flip pages fast, zip along.
"Zafir was not a man who would abandon his post" p 385. In enemy warehouse, they cannot raise sniper outside. I like when tense situations snowball. Definitions of title can be found in many pages. Possible 1 "unintended consequences of failed foreign policy or botched covert action", 2 "CIA agent or operation turned against creators" - before Prologue.
"Could a bioweapon over 2K years old still be viable? You'd be surprised how long ancient poisons remain lethal" p 107. When Hannibal crossed the Alps, his elite corps died carrying rare snake-canine venom combo, found by Skorpion targets. A loose lid accidentally releases virus before antidote. (view spoiler)[
Jill accidentally finds original vials, rabies vampire-like combo. Skorpion is fat Kalachka, underestimated by Harvath as intermediary, fence. Kalachka really wants Muslim majority inoculated, but Faruq messes up timing. Kalachka wants Saudi Royals, "ultra-conservative Wahhabi", and minority to die along with Christians. Non-Muslims are a wide group.
To Scot, Kalachka pretends Emir is his nephew, not a target. Leader of Muslim minority took Emir to protect him. Kalachka, pretending to be on same side, kills Leader and Emir. Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah is good. Hamal is his "son .. indiscretion in my youth" p 405, who bottled antidote in ordinary tap water as if from special Mecca spring, one yearly prescribed for his conservative Muslims.
At first, conversion for Americans to Muslim is No-No, A Big Deal. Then a temporary ceremony, commonly used, takes little time, lets them approach areas forbidden before. Sheesh. Silly. (hide spoiler)]
London. Key destination. "Come with me if you want to live" p 93 Scot repeats, rescues academic Jillian Allcott 27 from Assassin in busy mall. Scot procrastinates answer, when all she asks for is his name, meaning if he comes from good guys. Her "PhD in paleopathology" p 79 is about ancient bioweapons. He protects her, and needs her. Of course she's gorgeous. Flirting. I get to imagine Brit accents, desert heat, sand wonderful in snowy cold Canada. "Storms had grown to become a metaphor for Jillian" p 91 is Excess biography. Tedious, fiddly, unimportant.
First Alps, then Pakistan. Hippety hopping viewpoints are grating, give little bits later set into bigger bytes. Book starts with Donald Ellyson bleeding out from Assassin who kills everyone on the expedition, on his list. Pakistan. Same Assassin sets up 'accident' for next on list from employer Skorpion, Master Villain.
Iraq. In isolated village, US Army teams find and get infected by bioweapon. In busy city bazaar, TV news exposes our hero agent Scot catching vendor, substituted for escaped Assassin Alomari. Bangladesh. Brilliant physicist Emir Tokay is kidnapped while aiming for home in Turkey.
Washington DC. "I believed in defending what America stands for" p 57. Too much boring politicos, Helen. Power-hungry Democrat senator Helen Carmichael wants to "batter the incumbent president" p 28. White House. Republican President Jack Rutledge is warned "She's got her teeth into something .. we've got him" p 34 US soldier seen, unnamed, face hidden, taking down vendor in video. (view spoiler)[
"We'd never bump into Helen. She hates kids" p 175, so Helen's aide Neal Monroe meets Scot's boss Gary Lawlor in Children's Museum. Neal crosses over to the Good guys because "At the end of the day, he wanted no regrets" p 174, seeing her files came wrongly from CIA. (hide spoiler)]
"Do you want to explain to me why we had to meet all the way out here?" p 57. Scot is best when on the go - fight, pursue, flee - "I Like to Move It" Penguins of Madagascar video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FsWVv... . Enough bouncing around for sake of too many place names. Events could happen almost anywhere.
"Bring it on" Scot smiles at DEA agent Nick "Campos discreetly belted out the army yell Hooyah!" p 75. Too many threads, backstories. I finally realized I wasn't forgetting names from before. Kevin McCauliff 28 may be a friend from "annual Marine Corps Marathon" p 199, but please boil down to essential. Kev "owed a favor" p 199, can send satellite images without official "boxes of paperwork" p 200 as long as "nothing happened between you and my sister" p 201 Denise. Some folks are new, just added here, appear later in book.
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Good "EX-CIA operative Chip Reynolds" 58 p 253 runds his own network, bypassing Faruq "who never liked him" p 253 "is from a clan hostile to the Royal Family" p 393. Confusing who is good or bad, especially when traitors hide.
Paris. "24-hour Internet café" is all over the world. In Sotheby files, one step behind Assassin who killed office, missed flash drive, Scot finds "Elliot Burnham" known alias. Bad "ex-Secret Service agent Timothy Rayburn .. somewhere in SE France" p 176. I lose track of names, Saudi this, Muslim that. Good tolerant are minority of Muslims; Bad meanies "Sunni faithful" p 415 are majority of Muslims.
Back in Switzerland, Scot asks Claudia from previous book, and new fiancé stud Horst Schroeder, leader of commando team, to help. She claims her father was Sherpa on original group that extracted Hannibal artifacts. We get to know widow Marie Lavoine, who offers some artifacts her husband, expedition guide Bernard, hid separately from expedition leader Donald. (view spoiler)[
Claudia lures "disgraced .. Rayburn" from mountain top down to restaurant. Rayburn kills commandos. Assassin killed Marie and son, so Claudia pretends to want greater share of sale. Scot kidnaps Rayburn to take back up, under their control, in known (?) Hannibal tactic. That is the plan.
Skorpion, aka Kalachka, believed ally, kills tolerant Muslim leader paying Rayburn to guard him, Emir, and wounds Horst badly, maybe fatally. Abdullah makes Scot promise not to kill his son Hamal, so Scot shoots Hamal in kneecaps. Scot kills Kalachka holding Hamal and remote detonator for building. Scot retrieves Horst, feared dying. Scot figures out where artifacts are hidden.
In tunnels, Jill slays Assassin on point of killing Scot. Shel gets $10M for "helping to kill" p 432 Khalid Sheik Alomari. Hooray for girl power, despite after shock. "Shooting rabbits in Cornwall" gun practice in youth pays off. "That was the second time she had saved his life" p 410 later when climbing mountain to Muslim minority Leader.
"Chop-Chop Square, the parking lot of Riyadh's main mosque, where Saudi justice was publicly meted out each Friday" p 431 sounds like 1792 French Revolution guillotine http://www.capitalpunishmentuk.org/gu.... Hardly seems fair that Helen is allowed to resign over "health problems, or the ever-so-popular .. time with family" p 429, but her CIA informant and lover Brian Turner gets "solitary confinement in a federal lockup" p 431, very long time very deep jail. (hide spoiler)]
Typo: p 176 "got on line" is usually "got online" p 384 "our elusiveinfective agent" is "our elusive infective agent" p 175 "senator hates kids .. daughter? That's a neighbor's kid. They just rent her for photo ops" Is this a joke? Is next line a joke? Does girl exist? p 431 "daughter who couldn't stand either of her parents" Does she exist? Are lines jokes?["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Many puns; some I miss. Goes round about; some predictable zigs, other confusing zags. For when you're in the mood for unusual alert brain and EnglishMany puns; some I miss. Goes round about; some predictable zigs, other confusing zags. For when you're in the mood for unusual alert brain and English language tickles. Most likely could not translate. I needed pauses to catch up with twists.
Kody wakes up in hospital, hears anesthetic for "controlled coma" p 12 may cause mood reversal, title backwards. Kody next wakes in Xanth, grabs a catbird from ogre before the monster stomps off. Hipporoc crossbreed, friend of catbird, gratefully gives Mundania (our world) arrival a "check her board" p 15, or carved cheese statues. Besides games, picture carries whoever is touching square to locale depicted. Some segues are too easy.
Kody is immune to land-wide curse, sees outwardly beautiful or ugly as is, whereas Xanthians see appearances as opposites. Quest companions are not "assembled seemingly randomly, but to turn out to have relevant abilities when the need arises" p 99. After Kody meets sweet zombie Zosi, second Quest aim is "restore zombies to Xanth before they are rendered extinct" p 98.
In this fantasy land, when people "do the signalling ritual" storks bring babies "not very efficient; it takes about nine months" p 227. Clothes and food grow on handy bushes. Trouble comes from strange places. Surprises. One of the team is a spy for the villainess, NoAmi. (view spoiler)[
"They slept between bouts of love. It was a busy night" p 227. Racier than much of the series, still comes in a list form. "The room was filled with little floating, glowing hearts. Then came the finale that blasted the hearts away and left them both happily exhausted" p 226.
"Demons set these things up, then watch them play out without interference" p 311. "Any open interference would be an infraction of the Demon wager rules that the Demon Xanth can deal with. We just have to trick her, or taunt her into using her powers openly in Xanth, thus violating Demon protocols" p 287. Demons show, exchange status points. I found this resolution unsatisfying, like real life people are pawns moving around with less choice than we hope for.
Naomi helps, even in ghost form. Why did Kody not pay attention when given ability to return from Mundane world to Xanth whenever he wants? At the end he does turn off curse, wake from coma, remember he can leave. (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
1-2* "There was an aching pain where her heart should be" p 196. Gloomy place, unhappy Aggie. Suits when you're in a teary mood. Not my favorite of se1-2* "There was an aching pain where her heart should be" p 196. Gloomy place, unhappy Aggie. Suits when you're in a teary mood. Not my favorite of series. Men rush over too often, mess up more than help. Aggie repeats problems, calls vicar's wife Mrs Bloxby, departs early to visit her.
Agatha Raisin, bald patches from murder-hairdresser in last case, flees Lilac Lane Cotswold cottage for out of season seaside Garden Hotel, managed by Mr Martin. Daisy refers Agatha to "witch" Frances Juddle, who takes umbrage at Aggie's beloved fur coat. Hair tonic and love potion sprouts hairs and attracts police Inspector Jimmy Jessop.
Aggie finds Francie "half out of the bed .. Blood from a great wound on her head had dripped onto her white carpet" p 25. Agatha investigates graying guests - Daisy with eyes for "tall, slim" p 55 colonel, odd couple Jennifer and Mary, old Harry - while Aggie "began to imagine their wedding" p 47 to Jimmy. She accepts his proposal, still dreaming of stern ex James Lacey. Sir Charles Fraith comes to help.
Aggie rescues Francie's white cat and names her Scrabble for the boring regular evening games she put up with to question suspects. Scrabble flies at Daisy, supposed to be Francie's friend. C-warning: Daisy's husband "gloomy sort .. sixty cigarettes a day man" p 57. "At the heart of every addict, there's a death wish" p 57, yet Aggie doesn't quit.
Francie's daughter Janine takes over business, adds seances. Aggie convinces new Scrabble pals to try. Janine, non-swimmer, drowns in sea. The Colonel, never named, dies too. (view spoiler)[
The Colonel "died of natural causes" p 156. Charles seduces Aggie, hearing "Janine's voice .. never have sex again .. only to prove Janine wrong" p 16. Malicious Daisy sends up Jimmy with autopsy news. Jimmy finds couple naked, writes request for ring returned, "never wanted to see her face again" p 163. Manager would kick her out, but she overpays in bribes.
Scrabble is another white cat, not Francie's, so Daisy is a stranger. Daisy is mad, jealous, killer. "They were bad women .. They were evil women" p 172. Sounds like Schwarzenegger in film True Lies. she jumps out of window, badly injured, no final verdict.
Jimmy gets credit "kudos for solving those murders" p 194. Aggie gives her mink to Gladwyn Evans 35, Jimmy's new pregnant fiancée, who sneaks "flash of pure hatred" p 191, curses Aggie. Wedding invites include hotel guest trio, who intend to move "to Eastbourne .. not the same .. stint on the food and raise the rates" p 194. (hide spoiler)]
Typo: p 55 "colonel in front her" is "in front of her"["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
May be most all round dangerous of series - doped drinks, guns, fire, explosion, chase - in the end, the whole village of Stoyre. Real issues of abuseMay be most all round dangerous of series - doped drinks, guns, fire, explosion, chase - in the end, the whole village of Stoyre. Real issues of abuse. Romance is pure fun. Plus more silliness elsewhere. Hamish accepts Angela's coffee, quickly adding "black" after "noticing that one of the cats had its head in the milk jug" p 191.
"You'd think the word of a policeman would count for something these days" p 23. Constable Hamish Macbeth 30s p 29 eyes how "sweeping brush marks" p 22 change dusty floor where shopkeeper claims thieves stole booze. After publicity "hit the headlines" p 156 favorably, Supt Peter Daviot threatens Hamish with promotion to big cities. Cop Jimmy Anderson, always up for a dram, has a suggestion.
"Mrs Gilchrist's rather doughy face showed no traces of weeping" p 201 for son Tommy 7 reported missing by teacher "getting on two days" p 200 ago. Hearing and seeing excess religion, no play or friends, Hamish snaffles shiny key, unlocks "cupboard under stairs".(Harry Potter, anyone?) "Two terrified eyes stared up at him". Hamish "untied him and removed the gag, and, lifting him gently in his arms, carried him outside" p 203. So many cases I almost forgot abused Tommy.
"Weird clothes" p 103 parade different strange outfits above same "usual clumpy boots" p 102. Local reporter Elspeth Grant helps Hamish research with promise of big story. Ditzy bleach-blond Bella Comyn 42-15= 27 claims hubby Sean 42 gave her black eye. RSPCA wants Bella for killing collie. Adoring Sean stops joint account, but forgets to change will. Gypsy heritage of Elspeth warns of "odd feeling" p 35 trouble more than once.
Maisie "had rheumatoid arthritis. She'd no more have tackled those stairs than she would have thought of climbing Everest" p 108. After friend falls to death, Mrs Annie Docherty 92 p 168, claims "year older" p 129 than Charlie Jefferson 88 p 124, signs over her cottage to The Pines nursing home, investigates more "unfortunate accident"s p 116. "When people I don't like call round, I mumble and drool" p 107. After Annie and Charlie witness "overdose of morphine" p 140 fatal injection, front gates of estate close on their hot-wired car.
"There was a strange atmosphere .. Well, ye cannae be arresting an atmosphere" p 64. Silent Stoyre villagers, short of entertainment without TV reception, claim religious revival. But Hamish and Elspeth "had to strain to hear" p 79 preacher. Major Jennings "did some low-key work in Belfast" p 83, his bungalow was "blown up" into "burnt-out shell" p 65. Hamish is drugged to sleep while his Stoyre rental burns around him.(view spoiler)[
Jimmy suggests drunk driving. Hamish drinks just to the limit. Jimmy will "be on hand to tell him ["Red-hot keen" new cop] to drop" charges p 38.
Insurance company pays off six pubs altogether in fraud conspiracy. Bella "punched herself" p 56, beats Sean, caught "about to fake a suicide" p 97. Charlie steals back deeds for Annie, hotwires car of guilty doctor, "hurtled through the closing gates .. terrible sound of tearing metal on either side" p 139. Charlie "doesn't know I [Annie] made a will out in his favor" p 161.
Annie dies of heart attack, frightened by holographic image. Villagers believed hologram of bearded old God who promised eternal life by drinking from Holy Grail, if they ignored strangers in their waters. Another image ordered fertiliser bomb explosion to keep owner Major Jennings in England.
Charlie saves Hamish from rigged electrical fire. When dog Lugs ignores hologram, so does Hamish. Elspeth asks "tall and handsome" p 210 ex-boyfriend to demonstrate holograms. Villagers repent, take Hamish to Charlie, tied up in manse basement nigh two days. Charlie was caught searching the manse office while he thought everyone was at church service.
Fierce waves wash away Stoyre. Hamish rescues little girl. Villains drown. Their pockets hold unmarked gold bars from unkmarked WW2 sub wreck.
One German without gold washes ashore safely, holds gun to Hamish, on holiday camping with dog Lugs. Supt Daviot chooses to believe lies. Always creative, Hamish invents story to fit honeymooning hikers' testimony, corpse from loaded shotgun on seat of official police Land Rover. (hide spoiler)]
Angie "telt them herself had been in love wi' you for years" p 279, fed up with gossiping Curries "middle-aged twins" p 15. Word spreads, Angie held hand of anxious Hamish at the vet. Elspeth, foolishly believes the sisters. The more Hamish goes "around denying it, folks will really begin to think there's something in it" p 279.
Waiter Willy, as usual, mixes his words. "The kirk says adulteration is a bad thing" p 287. Hamish shouts "The word is adultery!" to "a silence in the restaurant" p 287.
Definition: p 73 donkey engine is a steam-powered winch, used to raise gold
Typos: p 27 "diffuse the situation" is normally "defuse"["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Re-read. People die easily. Accidents attract creatures who suck energy from injured, dying. (view spoiler)[ I remember creatures remove pain, not lifRe-read. People die easily. Accidents attract creatures who suck energy from injured, dying. (view spoiler)[ I remember creatures remove pain, not life force.
Cosmo Hill 14, named for where the orphan was found, has heart stop during escape from Clarissa Frayne Institute, where companies test new products for harmful effects. Inmates usually survive little longer. Moody Stefan ~16 revives Cosmo with electric shock. His gang, dwarf medic Ditto "28" p 34 and pretty mechanic Mona "~15" p 28, bring Cosmo along.
Dart from villainous lawyers pursuing accident victims poisons Mona, but Cosmo recognizes product and antidote from Institute. Ditto patches fractured skull with plate of "material used to armor assault tanks" p 34. When healed, Cosmo can "head-butt your way through a brick wall" p 34. (view spoiler)[ When team trapped in tank by Myishi, Cosmo bangs cracks into walls with last breaths to release them, and Ellie's experiment. (hide spoiler)]
Title "Supernaturalist" is person, after nearly dying, who sees blue creatures. Now Cosmo sees them "sucking life force with horrifying gusto, glowing bright gold with swirling energy" p 117 from dying humans. Stefan started seeing 'Parasites' after a vehicle crash killed his mom, almost him. (view spoiler)[ Ellie caused accidents to Stefan and others in his Police class, to create Supernaturalists. (hide spoiler)]
Creatures are multiplying, sit on victim shoulders, or wait on nearby buildings for incident. Stefan leads his friends to zap creatures away with energy guns. (view spoiler)[ Adding energy causes creatures to start life cycle, replicate more. Exploding nest under Institute with poisoned nuclear bomb contaminates and kills creatures permanently. (hide spoiler)]
Stefan calls in his mom's longtime best friend Ellen Faustino, now working on research, change inside big company Myishi. Cruel for good guy to die, bad to live. (view spoiler)[
Hero Cosmo loses best friend growing up, Ziploc. His mentor Stefan sacrifices himself taking down villain. "Incredibly" she survives p 262. Myishi chairman, Satellite City Mayor Ray Shine, banishes her. At isolated South Pole facility, she will continue researching trapped creatures suffering to recycle 'clean' energy. (hide spoiler)](hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Jokes, courage, traditional tea, are elements I like here. Vaunted journeys not so much; I like lessons that sneak into our memories, not bonk on ourJokes, courage, traditional tea, are elements I like here. Vaunted journeys not so much; I like lessons that sneak into our memories, not bonk on our beans. More for unusual strengths, less for political correctness, are crippled and foreign heroes. Our trivia knowledge is tested in text and "15 Questions" at end.
Mrs Eva Marie Olinski, paraplegic Gr 6 teacher, forms trivia team "The Souls" who compete for state title in nail-biting finish that circles around to Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass and Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Student Noah unexpectedly replaces Allan Diamondstein as best man at Florida retirement home wedding of silent stubborn Ethan's grandma Margaret and red-hair Nadia Diamondstein's Jewish Grandpa Izzy. Chance link between students becomes steady. On Saturdays, Julian Singh invites 'Souls' to Sillington House, his dad's new B & B, for afternoon tea "always at four".
"I am a ass" converts to "I am a passenger on Spaceship Earth" p 73. I like brave calm Julian, who outwits bullies 'Ham' Hamilton Knapp and Michael Froelich. Ham marks black permanent ink on Julian's leather schoolbag. Julian, ever polite, even challenges incorrect adult judges.
Pages narrated by cold Ethan show him to be very selfish; Nadia rather selfish. Ethan never admits to admiring Nadia's halo of red hair, no romance. Mr Singh says "Ethan took a little longer than the other two, yet his journey was the shortest. It was a ride on the school bus. And Julian was the last" p 156. I'd peg Julian first; he brought along others.
"You must know of something's existence before you can notice its absence .. Noah, Nadia, and Ethan found kindness in others and learned how to look for it in themselves" p 157. Ethan repeats bus ride many times to get the effect, so I peg him last, Nadia next.
"Larger than usual audience [comes] .. mostly because everyone would be waiting for Homer Fairbain to goof" p 135. "District deputy superintendent in charge of instruction" causes comic relief. Homer fulfils expectations, asks "hybrid .. in part .. East Indian" Julian, "What is your tribe?" p 137. ...more
Re-read of series. Still hilarious modernized Irish traditions. Yummy yummy, almost as good as ice cream -- sweet, smooth, cool, explosions of meltingRe-read of series. Still hilarious modernized Irish traditions. Yummy yummy, almost as good as ice cream -- sweet, smooth, cool, explosions of melting dark chocolate surprises. Scary monsters; fierce fairies too. Believable unbelievabilities blend old and new. Set the bar at kid-level humor, fantabulous vocab in "A tsunami of regurgitated rations .. not a pretty sight" p 266. "D'Arvit" groaned Root p 267 in untranslatable curse.
Artemis Fowl 12, beyond brilliant billionaire, unhealthy indoor pale, wants Irish fairy gold to get back his father 'Timmy', who disappeared in Russia. Mother Angeline hides in her own room, lost in dreams. Bodyguard Butler and Juliet, Butler's bored teen sister, are the boy's only friends.
Artie kidnaps Captain Holly Short of "LEPrecon, an elite branch of the Lower Elements Police" p 33 dressed in "stylish .. dull-green jumpsuit" p 32, while she grabs acorn for full-moon renewing magic ritual. Centaur Foaly develops high tech, best after tested. Commander Root "had been on Holly's case since day one .. notoriously dangerous posting with a high fatality rate .. was [not] any place for a girlie" p 32.
Root sends in earth-gobbling "kleptomaniac dwarf" p 34. Mulch Diggums has "prodigious appetite for tunneling .. ingest several pounds of earth a second .. processed by a super-efficient metabolism .. ejected at the other end .. Charming" p 162. Mulch will bypass secret Fairy Rulebook, copy stolen by Artemis. (view spoiler)[
Holly plants acorn in her basement cell, restores her magic, breaks free, saves Butler's life after ogre attack. Artemis finds loophole for total plant-animal bio-bomb detonated in Santa-like paused time-field bubble to keep gold, tests on Angeline first. Butler trusts boy with their lives, drinks sleeping pills dissolved in champagne.
Artemis trades some gold to Holly for one wish -- Angeline is restored to reality. Restoration of responsible adult means back to school for minor. Mulch transfers "two dozen ingots into the tunnel .. early retirement" p 270, believed dead in blue flare bio-bomb explosion. I remember Mulch plays more parts in ongoing Holly-Artemis battle and .. shock? .. joint operations. (hide spoiler)].
Typo: p 268 "People could chose" is "could choose" ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
"Something was bothering him, but he couldn't place it" p 13. Mitch Rapp, "a one-man wrecking ball" p 6 works down list of those responsible for downi"Something was bothering him, but he couldn't place it" p 13. Mitch Rapp, "a one-man wrecking ball" p 6 works down list of those responsible for downing PanAm jet and his girlfriend then, until Tarek's ambush in a Paris luxury hotel sends him on the run. His CIA handler Irene Kennedy believes Mitch followed protocol, only shot target, not bystanders. Someone who could identify Mitch leaked the list to the enemy.
Monsigneur de Fleury, former Resistance, "kept his contacts with French Intelligence" p 96, overhears corrupt federal security force Directorate agent Fournier in church crypt conspire with Max, Tarek, Samir -- I lose track of too many names. Muslims' "lack of respect was obscene" p 97. Commandant Neville "had a very well-tuned BS detector .. she'd never heard of bodyguards using silenced weapons" p 127, catches ex-boyfriend Fournier for tampering with crime scene out of his jurisdiction, and worse.
Greta, "her grandfather was their clandestine banker" p 384, Mitch's girlfriend now, forgoes planned romantic weekend, brings disguises, first aid for gunshot wound, eagerness to help. Stan Hurley, CIA trainer saved by Mitch from torture and death, unbelievably ungrateful, sends Chet Bramble, known as Victor to Mitch in Stan's class, to track Mitch; bully psychopath has own agenda. (view spoiler)[
"The mere mention of it [pig waste] filled Chet's nostrils with the overpowering smell" p 136. Confusing using two names, Chet aka Victor. Agreed, childrens clothing can drench a whole schoolbus, but growing up working on a farm does not automatically turn a kid bad. Why do we have tedious sidetrack, psychoanalyze villains, blame environment for their evil?
Greta sees Chet kill his own team; Chet blames Mitch. Criminals just get out of jail in little time, back on the streets, commit havoc. I prefer killed, permanently gone, although assisted care facility may do. Authors of series understandably like to have old villains return, saves inventing new ones, motives. Sometimes crazy is crazy, bad is>/i? bad, without cause or reason.
"I haven't been very fair to you. I apologize for that" p 385. Stan finally likes Mitch. Such extreme reversal might have been believable before. Not now. I wouldn't mind seeing the curmudgeon again. Does so much detail about happily married Neville mean readers will see her again? Is Greta really going to be forbidden to see Mitch?
"Key player in funding the various radical Muslim groups .. next name on the list of authorized targets" p 380 is Max. Mitch beats on Chet for name of traitor Paul Cooke, CIA deputy director. Silent while CIA spy listening, wearing Mitch interrupts villains' meeting to frame scene. "Cooke and Fournier .. shot both men in the chest .. pumped three more into Samir and left the gun in Fournier's grip .. police would be intrigued" p 383. Stan outlines exits, picks Mitch up afterwards. (hide spoiler)]
"See what it was like to live a normal life .. all wishful thinking .. He wasn't like other people and he never would be. They had changed him forever. The End" p 385. Dead serious, sad, not a whiff of joke. Target villain with a perfect kill shot, protect innocents, never leave a fellow agent behind, adhere to code of honor even when others abjure. Mitch is an agreeably old-fashioned Real Man.
For now, I will divert to more fun reading, though I like old West-style loners such as Mitch, admire him, care about him, want to know what happens to him. He is a guy I could spend more time with, although perhaps he is hard for anyone to live with. I hope to visit him again. Extras - Greta, de Fleury - are lively and worth spending hours with again too. I am grateful to authors who pencil people I can run away with, safe vicarious danger.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
"After he'd retired and Janice had died of cirrhosis and he was living someplace with no extradition treaty, he'd write his memoirs" p 99 as a double"After he'd retired and Janice had died of cirrhosis and he was living someplace with no extradition treaty, he'd write his memoirs" p 99 as a double agent for CIA and Chinese. Sections are narrated by 'Eddie', wife calls him, adding more (dis)information to find mole. I don't like these teaser point of view switches.
"Let them ['hemoginist' Americans] talk" [villain] Li said. "Talk does not cook rice" .. he'd won .. agreement with Iran .. death of their North Korean spy had cost them their best intelligence" p 123. Thoroughly delineated starving migrant "Jordan never knew what [the riots] he and Song and Yu had begun. He died the first day, his body battered beyond recognition by nightstick blows" p 174. When personalities, motivations, backgrounds explored in depth for minor roles, reader loses more when subject dies. I'm not good remembering these place and people names, find political back and forth confusing. (view spoiler)[
"The blue pill first " p 381. In prison, Li suicides, rather than "destroy his family if he resisted" p 380. Why are there three pills? Why does Zhang suggest "blue pill first" p 380 and why would Li obey enemy? (hide spoiler)]
"He enveloped her .. she forgot she was tired" p 225. CIA handler Jennifer Exley and agent John Wells finally give in to mutual attraction. Reasons for going into China himself are weak. "Fixed location, fixed time" meet p 286 is obvious setup. 5* hotel "room's luxury made the danger of the mission seem less real" p 287. No, more like horror movie buxom blonde going into dark basement or forest where monster lurks.
"He had destroyed that Talib as easily as the average person swatted a fly" p 382. Obsessing on "brains he'd blasted .. he never cried" is useless, boring. 'Average' people need some more hard-hearted, like John, to protect us from those we lack ability to swat. "He would never quit" p 383. A tough hero makes his series strong; I liked debut. I'll pause for now on series.["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
Re-read series. What a thrill to fall back into such a strange invention. Valkyrie is brave, would do anything to save her teacher, and does risk theRe-read series. What a thrill to fall back into such a strange invention. Valkyrie is brave, would do anything to save her teacher, and does risk the impossible. Swing of who is who and where, unremembered motivations, would be easier if I'd read series read closer together, but worth sorting out puzzle and catching up with eccentrics -- good, bad, and zig-zag in-betweens.
Magic and mortal worlds scatter news reports seemingly at random. Scarab unites Springheel Jack "the Ripper" and other villains, each with their own agenda. He orders Vaurien Scapegrace to bite humans and recruit a zombie army. 60K+ mundanes gather to watch the Irish futbol cup at Croke Park.
Personal and life-death issues overlap. "We have news" her mother said .."We've decided to get a pet," her dad announced" p 163. Teen teleport Fletcher Renn and Valkyrie Cain kiss and hug, new sweethearts. After a year being tortured by Faceless Ones and their minions, Valkyrie's mentor private detective Skulduggery Pleasant believes she is a hallucination, and refuses to go home through gate, set to close shortly. (view spoiler)[
China comes through the portal to Faceless side. Both girls drag him home. At Earth side, China Sorrows is shot dead, but brings herself back to life. She shoots dead crazy Remus Crux before he can divulge her secret to anyone else but us. "Nefarian Serpine killed Skulduggery Pleasant, but China Sorrows led his family into the trap" p 300.
Cain parents think a pony might be too large for a city pet. "How about something a little smaller?" her dad said. "Like, I don't know, a brother or a sister?" p 165.
Guild "had only been trying to do the right thing" p 407 framing Scarab for murder. Fletcher zaps Thurid Guild away from game, and Desolation Engine to explode in ocean.
Traitor Detective Davina Marr mind-controls Myron Stray, his eardrums punctured so he cannot hear any new commands after her orders to set off artifact Desolation Engine in the Irish Sanctuary. Skulduggery's beloved Bentley, "29 sorcerers and 21 Cleavers" p 411 guards destroyed in the blast, Marr and Scapegrace vanish.
Warnings predict the coming of Darquesse "unimaginable evil -- the world on the edge of destruction" p 405. Valkyrie wakes from a nightmare, remembering the Book of Names. "Next to Stephanie Edgley, next to Valkyrie Cain. Her true name" is Darquesse" p 415. The End. (hide spoiler)]
p 237 "If you won't change you mind" is "your mind" p 263 ch 30 title "Mid-Aftrnoon" is "Mid-Afternoon"["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
I like grown-up Bastien, less rebellious teen Raeven. Pirate refuses to fight her, either "child" dressed as a boy, or hair loosed as girl. She's thouI like grown-up Bastien, less rebellious teen Raeven. Pirate refuses to fight her, either "child" dressed as a boy, or hair loosed as girl. She's thoughtless, gets others in trouble, even killed. Of course romance is sweet-hot main plot, her emerald eyes fall for his "cobalt eyes" p 150, with sides of fighting, deaths.
Despite Admiral's warnings, his young purser Percy Williams never admits he loves Raevan, and helps her escapades till the very last. Percy and Bastien say a man makes his own choices. Raeven knows Percy "adored her" p 1. She and I blame her for getting Percy in trouble.
Bastien's bosun is dark-skin leviathan Ridley "tattoos on his face" p 152. Quartermaster is spit-spot smart freckled Maine. A traitor on Bastien's crew lights lantern to guide Jourdain ambush for Bastien's ship Shadow. (view spoiler)[ Maine, who does anything for money, shoots Percy, protecting Raeven. Percy's dying words are "Lo ... you" p 231. (hide spoiler)]
"She'd given her maidenhead to Timothy, hadn't seen any reason to wait until the wedding, especially when they were so often apart. she wanted some memory of him to keep her warm on the long nights while she waited for their wedding day. Now he was dead, and she didn't regret her actions" p 150.
Raeven is cowardly. She runs away from aristocracy back to familiar father with excuse of his possible poor health. (view spoiler)[ She should guess Bastien would give himself up to her father to save his ship. Back in London, aristocracy of the Harcourt family frightens her. Pardoned for piracy, Bastien joins the navy, gets a special marriage license, ends in elopement. In epilogue, baby girl is born. (hide spoiler)] I'm skeptical that Happy Ever After could be wedding and baby birth. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
"No matter how interminable something feels, there is always, always an ending. Sometimes that's good, and sometimes it's bad; sometimes it's a matter"No matter how interminable something feels, there is always, always an ending. Sometimes that's good, and sometimes it's bad; sometimes it's a matter of indifference, and sometimes it's heartbreaking, and your life is never the same thereafter" p 75.
Title "Grimspace" is the colorful addictive feel-fantastic interval experienced by spaceship pairs: pilots and navigators like narrator Sirantha Jax. Sacrifices are continual. Melancholy nightmare fades into tense escape, builds to serious conspiracy thriller; chases by bandits, invisible monster Teras, assassins; battles, salted with sweet moments, climaxes in hostage sacrifice situation; before explanations ensue. Surprises. I won't continue series right now because looking for more fun, less grim.
"Pain proves that you're alive, gives us the ability to appreciate pleasure -- everything in balance, everything in its time. You don't need to be afraid of falling, when there's someone around to catch you" p 312 murmurs Jax to March. The ending circles around to the beginning. "Are you afraid of falling, baby?" Jax remembers asking. "No, I'm afraid of landing" p 1 laughs pilot and lover Kai. Before the world falls apart. "All around me the world dies" p 146.
"You just don't know ... the things I've done. What I'm capable of. I hope you never do" p 251. "He always smells of citrus and a darker woodsy scent, like standing in a cedar forest at midnight" p 249 repeats, as do other phrases. Repetition, especially curses, gets tedious. March leads rescue of Jax from psychological torture. Only she survives crash of spaceship Sargossa, carrying "only eight crew" p 119 plus galactic hero Miriam Jocasta among 75 VIPs enroute to conference. Her former employer, powerful Farwan Corp, is (view spoiler)[ untouchable. "Who can prosecute (hide spoiler)] "a company so large, it essentially became a galactic government" p 309. (view spoiler)[
Psych Unit of Corp tries to break her down. When March believes Jax is dead, he has nothing left to live for. In suicide mission, he and lesbian mechanic Dina fight their way into Corp HQ, hold hostages. March demands to meet one responsible. Bounty hunter Velith, rare Slider shapeshifter alien who replaces, but notefully does not kill, Doc Saul, saves Jax, broadcasts videotaped evidence of Corp guilt. (hide spoiler)]
"What will it take to kill you?" p 305. Villain offers Jax as scapegoat for disaster. (view spoiler)[ "Technically .. husband" p 305 Simon wanted her dead. "Corp murdered .. Jocasta, because they were afraid of the vote .. to deregulate jump-travel and permit freely established academies" p 309. Corp causes Sargossa autopilot to override any manual intervention by Jax or Kai. Ship tries to land on invalid coordinates. (hide spoiler)]
"Oh Mary, that's good" p 168. "Oh Mary, the way he touches me .. Oh Mary, that's so good" p 169. "Mary, he's fragging brilliant" p 308. Usual curse is "Mary", next frag. "Sod what we want" p 20 suggests England influence. At first strange, odd, then boring in repetition. Why switch to our swear words? If we can smile at their curses, we can smile at ours, and Sargossa AI name like our phone. "Siri, what the f-k're they doing?" p 145.
"I will always come for you, Jax" p 103, followed by "he had me weeks ago, when he promised he'd always come for me" p 168 is preferable. No entendre, double meaning. "I'd just be using to for s-x .. slow smile. I can live with that" p 167 is more straightforward. Erratic use of italics: sometimes her thoughts, sometimes couple's telepathic exchanges. Telepathy seems extraneous.
Typo: p 76 forefend is forfend["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more