I almost went 5 stars on this partly because I loved every second I spent in this book, and 2ndly it was a very pleasant surprise. I am not a huge RioI almost went 5 stars on this partly because I loved every second I spent in this book, and 2ndly it was a very pleasant surprise. I am not a huge Riordan fan, and strongly dislike the PJ series...the only reason I even tried this was because I love Margaret Peterson Haddix, and she wrote book 10....but I couldn't very well read that without going through the others......so here I am a quarter of the way through book 2 before I could stop to write this review.
I know some of the characters are largely unbelievable, and so is the plot....but sometimes it is fun just to sit back and watch an exciting treasure hunt with double crosses galore....more
Hmmmmm....clearly not my favorite Deaver read, and quite likely my least favorite. I kept waiting and waiting for the story to resonate with me and drHmmmmm....clearly not my favorite Deaver read, and quite likely my least favorite. I kept waiting and waiting for the story to resonate with me and draw me in....but it never did. The plus for me was that it was not that long of a book. I did think the presentation of the storyline, was a unique way to go. I am not sure if the author failed in that endeavor or if it merely failed to connect with me....more
It has been a while since I enjoyed a Grisham book quite this much. I believe that I have read every Grisham book but 2, and this was as enjoyable asIt has been a while since I enjoyed a Grisham book quite this much. I believe that I have read every Grisham book but 2, and this was as enjoyable as any.
Jake Brigance is back a few years after the events from "A Time to Kill", and as a few others have noted you don't have to read that in order to enjoy this one....However Grisham does weave several characters from other books into this one, and I believe to fully appreciate the depth and or underlying statements it is beneficial to have read some of Grisham's stuff prior to this. Not necessary, but certainly beneficial!
Seth Hubbard is a wealthy man dying of cancer, and towards the end of his fight he devises a new will cutting out his entire family and leaving it all to his house keeper/care giver. What ensues is a legal war for the fortune, that is filled with racial tensions and sexual accusations. It develops into a slow and methodical legal drama....don't expect some of the action of earlier Grisham novels, although there are some tense moments.
Highly recommend to Grisham fans, fans of legal drama/thrillers, slow southern stereotypical life.... ...more
This was my first Haddix read, although this book has been on my shelf (and in my drawer) for over 2 years now. I am not sure why I waited so long?
BanThis was my first Haddix read, although this book has been on my shelf (and in my drawer) for over 2 years now. I am not sure why I waited so long?
Bang, the first chapter is as mysterious and well done as one could hope for. Good writing, suspense, mystery and then shift in another direction. The characters were very likeable (If not believable), and I couldn't help but empathize with some of the dilemmas and feelings they were dealing with. The story developed and unfolded piece by piece in a very inviting fashion....the only downside is what had been crafted for 238 pages, came to a less than satisfying climax during the last 76 pages. I really felt the final 76 pages would have been better served by being 120-150 pages. Everything fell into place to quickly, conversations forced, information gathered all at rapid fire speed. I am not against that, but it was opposed to the the story development for the first 250 pages. I felt like a writer was crafting a great story, and the deadline came before the book was ready.
Highly recommend to Juv. Fic., YA, sci-fi, time travel fans. Especially 10-13 y/o boys....more
I want to go 3.5, but not all the way to 4. I have never heard of Castillo or this series prior to stumbling across it.
A decent read. I really loved tI want to go 3.5, but not all the way to 4. I have never heard of Castillo or this series prior to stumbling across it.
A decent read. I really loved the way it began, with the gruesome detailed murder scene, and the very slow paced but methodical forensics/investigation to start the book off. I didn't dislike the characters (except the ones you are supposed to), but I didn't really get attached to them. Perhaps that is the price for starting in book 2, but I don't imagine book 1 would make them that dear to my heart. For me the story bogs down along with the investigation. The investigation is still drawing me in, but the filler background, psychoanalysis etc. didn't resonate with me. Finally the ending picks up some steam, but this has to be the most pacifistic/masochistic cop in crime fic. She has several chances to strike, but continuously waits until she....well never mind.
A decent read, I won't make a personal rec, but I wouldn't discourage you from reading it either....more
Yet another solid read by Baldacci, as well as a cool edition to the King/Maxwell series. I assume that this book/series has gained in popularity dueYet another solid read by Baldacci, as well as a cool edition to the King/Maxwell series. I assume that this book/series has gained in popularity due to the show but please don't lump me with them as I have never seen the show nor I do I even have TV.
A bang up action packed start lures us in, then a couple of nice and terrible twists to start the book off. King/Maxwell find themselves drawn to the hurting, and inescapably draw the ire of their ahem...country. Plenty of action and suspense. Well worth the time....more
I would probably go 3.5 stars were that an option, but my daughter and I enjoyed this a great deal so I rounded up.
Dave (and Lynsey) have been pairedI would probably go 3.5 stars were that an option, but my daughter and I enjoyed this a great deal so I rounded up.
Dave (and Lynsey) have been paired to do a history project together (uuugggghhhh girls), and neither is happy about it. During the research Dave learns about Gandhi and how he committed to not speaking for a whole day, each week for most of his life. Dave is intrigued by this, and gives it a try, only to have silence disrupted by GIRLS! This leads to a great competition to see who can talk the least during 48 hours boys or girls (I won't give the ending away, but you can tell it is fiction just by the result????). Teachers are confused and upon learning what is going on some are happy and some angry.....but the children committed to this. A very cool read on the power of words/language, and a great dialogue starter for small discussions.
Highly recommend to all dads and 5th grade daughters! ...more
Another well thought out and researched book by Rainer. As the Pastor of a smaller (around 70) church, with a largely older congregation many of the sAnother well thought out and researched book by Rainer. As the Pastor of a smaller (around 70) church, with a largely older congregation many of the symptoms in struggling and/or sick churches were easy to identify with.
Rainer shares his experiences as a church consultant, and describes churches who refused to make change for life, or were already to sick to reverse the illness. He shares common themes found in this dead/dying churches as a warning to churches that are struggling and/or declining.
I recommend this to all pastors of smaller churches and their leadership teams. I am going to order them for our Board to go through in the new conference year!...more
I debated between 2 and 3 stars, but as you can tell 3 won out. I am not sure how to explain my indifference to this edition in the Reacher series? ItI debated between 2 and 3 stars, but as you can tell 3 won out. I am not sure how to explain my indifference to this edition in the Reacher series? It had all the requisite testosterone and machismo; it had all the fighting and action one comes to expect; A few twists and Reachers down to earth analytical skills were on display; The same corny one liners and idiosyncrasies (I don't mean that in a bad way)....I just never drew me in the way that most of them do. I can't put my finger on it, it just didn't have what I what I have come to expect....more
I would likely call this 3.5, but again that remains an option that is not available to us here.
This time Reacher has run out of potential sleeping paI would likely call this 3.5, but again that remains an option that is not available to us here.
This time Reacher has run out of potential sleeping partners (I say this somewhat in jest), and returns to his old base and squad because the lady who has replaced him has a very nice voice. Tracking this unknown womans voice opens the door for Reacher and mystery woman to both be framed for crimes they didn't commit (This is not really a spoiler, it just kind of goes with most Reacher storylines). Reacher is forced back into service under some obscure law, with which he has never heard of. A cool story line evolves and another typical Raecher adventure of beating up the bad guys and random small town hoodlums ensues. Not a lot of thinking to be done here, just sit back and enjoy the ride.
I recommend this even as a stand alone. I had to read this prior to the previous book, because that one is on hold. There are certainly better Reacher books out there, but this should satisfy the craving for a simple action/adventure for a hungry reader. I would recommend a different book to start with if you have nor read Reacher before, but to Reacher fans and newbies, give it a try....more
I am adapting to reading juvenile fiction with my 10 y/o daughter and it is more difficult than I assumed, choosing what I would call girly books rathI am adapting to reading juvenile fiction with my 10 y/o daughter and it is more difficult than I assumed, choosing what I would call girly books rather than the macho juvenile fiction I read with my sons. But for the joy of sharing the love of reading with my daughter, I will adapt. I didn't really enjoy this as much as some of our other books, and was relieved that she didn't either. She calls it 3 stars, I call it 2....since this is my review 2 it is!
Decent story line about a young lady who loses her teachers pet front row seat, because her teacher wants to make the new girl (Sugar) feel welcome. On top of this dilemma she needs glasses, which as we all know is the result of sitting farther from the teacher, and this of course is the new girls fault...justifying our hatred of her.
Nonetheless we had fun discussing the story line and ethical dilemmas and emotions that go along with conflict and jealousy. I wouldn't recommend this, but I wouldn't advise against reading it either. Perhaps some 8-10 years old girls will enjoy this. ...more
This was somewhere between a 2.5 and a 3 star read for me, not quite a 3 but not a 2 either.
While I am likely not alone, I am sure that I am in a deciThis was somewhere between a 2.5 and a 3 star read for me, not quite a 3 but not a 2 either.
While I am likely not alone, I am sure that I am in a decisive minority when I say this book was much more enjoyable to me than Percy Jackson. Now don't get me wrong I am not a fan of either one and will likely never read a second book in either series, but I found the Egyptian background a little more interesting.
I heard some reviews say that they did not like the way writing flowed switching from brother/sister narrator by the chapter. I will say that I largely did this book as an audio book and it worked really well in that format, perhaps this is a case where an audio book does a justice to the narrative?
I guess I would recommend this to fans of Percy or similar types of teen fiction, or a nice diversion to someone looking for something different....but, I don't know that I would tell anyone "you just gotta read this"
A very cool read! I don't normally read a series out of order if I can help it, but a friend loaned me book 3 of this series before I was aware that iA very cool read! I don't normally read a series out of order if I can help it, but a friend loaned me book 3 of this series before I was aware that it was part of 1 (It is ok, cabinets served as a great stand alone, and did not detract from this at all!).
Considering that this is called the Pendergast series, it is odd that he does not really come into the story line until about a 1/3 of the way in and has what I would call a supporting or co-starring role at best. Preston and Child do a good job of making the characters both likeable and unlikeable at times, and unfolding the storyline from an earlier point in time, and tying it all together at the end. The ending was ok, but the epilogue serves as what I presume to be a great set-up for book 2 (I have it on hold and am just waiting on the call).
I am not a big fan of paranormal/supernatural type of story lines...but for this series I seem to have found an exception. I would recommend this to anyone that like suspense fiction.
I would call this a 3 star or OK/good read. Having just reread Presumed innocent as a prep for this my hopes were quite high. While this was an OK/gooI would call this a 3 star or OK/good read. Having just reread Presumed innocent as a prep for this my hopes were quite high. While this was an OK/good read, it did not live up to my expectations that the first book developed.
Jonas/Sandy Stern is quite a likeable character, and his further development in likely the only reason that I continued to read this and/or might lightly recommend it. It started with a terrible tragedy, that I wrongly assumed would be a devious investigation and trial of a murder/suicide. Instead this storyline becomes a sideshow rather than a focus. Well, that is OK there seems to be a devious insider trading/embezzlement storyline that will draw me in as did the trial in presumed innocent. WRONG! Instead what I get is for all intents and purposes, an adult (bordering on pornographic) soap opera type of story.
Again Sandy/Jonas is a very deep and likable tragedy whose faults and humanity are very relatable as he struggles to cope with a web of family. The story kept building up to what I felt would be a climax (no pun intended), and time and again it just developed into another family secret. Very lackluster storyline, and ending. Once again if not for the likeability of Stern and the attachment I have for him, I would not have finished this at all.
Turrow must write the very worst (no exaggeration) romance/love/sex scenes in all of literature. I thought Lee Child had cornered the market on that (I love Reacher but his love scenes are almost wooden and comical in their awkwardness). I am not a fan of sleazy relationships depicted in books, but I can often tolerate them....This was lewd, almost as if Turrow needed to convince someone that he knew his way around a bedroom.....much to descriptive, and very poorly portrayed.
If you are in the market for book 2 of this series by all means check it out, Stern grows into an even more likeable and deep character. If you are a fan of drama, soap opera type of deceit and duplicity this might be up your alley. If you want a legal thriller (or drama), there are many better books to grab....more
I would probably go 3 1/2 stars were that an option, but 4 seems to reflect my enjoyment of this moreso than a 3 star.
This is not my book of choice...I would probably go 3 1/2 stars were that an option, but 4 seems to reflect my enjoyment of this moreso than a 3 star.
This is not my book of choice....but after reading with teenage sons for the past 17/15 years, my 10 y/o daughter selected this book for us. Anytime I can read with one of my children and see them get excited about the world of words, is an opportunity not to be wasted!!!!! But, I would never have selected a book about 5th grade girl drama.
This was a very cute book, with some very good conversation, ethical situations, discussion. Ida is a very likeable lead who shares her experiences with her new best friend Stacey. They find what they believe to be a magical mermaid lamp, and their faith in this lamp leads them into many poor decisions and of course less than desirable consequences.
I would recommend this to 4th-5th grade girls (oh why not, boys too), and moms and dads who love to read every other page with their children. Quick paced, believable and likeable characters, a lot of laughs and fun on their misadventures....more
As you might guess, this is not really designed to be a reading book that you just sit down and gobble. It is howeve3 stars...yup....just about right!
As you might guess, this is not really designed to be a reading book that you just sit down and gobble. It is however a nice research tool and a compliment to a home school (perhaps a public school family as well?) family library. I would caution you not to use this as a curriculum in any way shape or form (I know most veteran homeschool moms/dads will already understand this), it is in no way an exhaustive list of what your fifth grader should know/learn. It also gives very little guidance in how to progress incrementally through the year, or plans/tips on how to teach some of this information. It is however a nice tool to compare with your homeschool curriculum(s), to balance and gauge what is and has been taught/learned throughout the year.
I would recommend this book, but you will not be lost without it IMHO....more
Yet another gem, by Connelly who remains among my favorites in crime fiction even outside of the rebound Bosch series!
McEvoy is back, and this time asYet another gem, by Connelly who remains among my favorites in crime fiction even outside of the rebound Bosch series!
McEvoy is back, and this time as a result of budget cuts in the financially diminished world or print media finds himself training his replacement. He uncovers a last ditch report in a desire to go out with a bang. He plans to write on a young man suspected of murder....along the way he uncovers an elaborate frame up unearthing a serial killer. Being technologically literate/proficient, but not astute or savvy, I found myself terrified and intrigued by this devious scheme and safeguard set up by the killer. Up until the very end I found myself in the midst of a 5 star crime read...the slightly lackluster ending however moved my final review to a 4. However I loved nearly every minute spent in this book...more
certainly among my favorites I this series. The Say cheese books are not normally among my favorites...but this one worked quite we for me and I trulycertainly among my favorites I this series. The Say cheese books are not normally among my favorites...but this one worked quite we for me and I truly loved the way things are falling into (or out of) place in Horror Land...more
Not my favorite by far, but still quite enjoyable and would likely award 3.5 stars were that an option. What a cool and youth friendly creepy read....Not my favorite by far, but still quite enjoyable and would likely award 3.5 stars were that an option. What a cool and youth friendly creepy read....going to live with your strange uncle whom you have not met...and nothing and no one is who or what it seems....more
Very cool one for me A demented super hero comic book theme. Every time would start a segment and find it may or may not have really happened added toVery cool one for me A demented super hero comic book theme. Every time would start a segment and find it may or may not have really happened added to my intrigue.....the demented video game actually made me think twice before I powered up the next game.......more
Probably the least enjoyable book in the series so far. Perhaps the timing of it? It took me several attempts just to get into. I did enjoy the HorrorProbably the least enjoyable book in the series so far. Perhaps the timing of it? It took me several attempts just to get into. I did enjoy the Horror Land sequence much more than the main story...more
Unfortunately I waited a month after reading this to get back on here and review it (busy summer)....but what I remembered of it was very enjoyable inUnfortunately I waited a month after reading this to get back on here and review it (busy summer)....but what I remembered of it was very enjoyable in a y/a juvenile fiction sort of way. I liked the narrative way the story was told from the kids point of view, and the action. The characters were likeable, the plotting developed nice and quick. Have not read anything by Rollins that I recall, although his name has been on my radar for awhile and a couple of his books have crept up on my to read list....more
I would go 3.5 stars were that an option, but this was a cool read an IMHO a major improvement upon the previous installment I this series.
Billy and hI would go 3.5 stars were that an option, but this was a cool read an IMHO a major improvement upon the previous installment I this series.
Billy and his sister Sheena are spending their vacation with their scientist Uncle Dr. D. After a day of swimming and arguing, they get the call to go and search for a long sought after sunken/vanished pirate ship. While their Uncle has dreams of scientific discovery Billy and Sheena have dreams of lost treasure. But then the story gets wild, ships, treasure, zombies/skeletons, crooks, guns and even dismemberment ensue. Their Uncle vanishes...can they ever find him and their way home?
I would recommend this, but also recommend you read the first book first!...more
I still love to read R.L. Stine and am not ashamed to admit that I still get great enjoyment from his books. This was certainly not among my favoritesI still love to read R.L. Stine and am not ashamed to admit that I still get great enjoyment from his books. This was certainly not among my favorites (None of "The Dummy" books ever have been), but is still a ice read..and I very much enjoyed the horror land amusement park into the story and found that albeit short part the highlight of the book.
Britney is just an average 12 y/o girl, who has to make room in her house and life for her cousin Ethan who is coming to live with her family. Along with being an annoying practical joker Ethan now has an ill mannered dummy with him. It does not take long for Britney to get blamed for everything Ethan and Mr.Bad Boy do (A little bit far fetched), and she grows very suspicious. It is not long before she discovers just how evil this no so dumb dummy really is....then the horror Land sequence make the story a notch more exciting. I didn't care for the broken ending, but oh well...
Recommend to all middle school fiction fans and of course Stine fans as well.
Edit: After reading book 2 I better understand the ending of book 1...although I still don't like....I just understand the reasoning....more
I had never heard of this book or author when I stumbled across this. I might be persuaded to go 3.5 stars, but would fall short of reaching 4.
Some grI had never heard of this book or author when I stumbled across this. I might be persuaded to go 3.5 stars, but would fall short of reaching 4.
Some gruesome murders are taking place through the Irish section of Buffalo, and it points at an old secret Irish clan. Absalom is a beautiful, brilliant and determined detective, and will not allow any one to push her off this case because she is a woman or an outsider....until she is a suspect herself. The mystery was very intriguing...who, how, why? kept me reading to find out. Now there is not a ton of action, but some good character and plot development makes up for that. A couple of nice twists at the end, revealing some surprises. ...more
This was just an ok read for me. The cover had me excited (The write up, not the picture), and I had visions on the scale of A Few Good Men or Hart'sThis was just an ok read for me. The cover had me excited (The write up, not the picture), and I had visions on the scale of A Few Good Men or Hart's War as I don't have a vast reservoir of military legal thrillers to draw upon, and they seem to present a unique dynamic to include in the legal thriller genre...so my curiosity was naturally peeked.
But, I kept given this more and more time to develop....but it never seemed to progress from the legal drama into a thriller that I was expecting. However it was just entertaining or interesting enough to make me proceed.
I am not sure that I would recommend this to any outside of legal dram fans, but I wouldn't discourage any from reading it either....more
I have just recently gotten into Saul, in spite of the fact that I have known of him for years. I have tried him various times throughout the years, bI have just recently gotten into Saul, in spite of the fact that I have known of him for years. I have tried him various times throughout the years, but could ever get into any of his books until recently.
I keep seeing comparisons to Stephen King's Carrie and I just don't see it. First as much as I like King, I found this superior to Carrie...particularly the case file study manner in which Carrie was written. The only things that really were comparative IMHO were the way that Sarah and Nick were bullied and ostracized at school. And the other was the religious fanaticism displayed by Sarah's foster family...But the fanaticism of this foster family didn't resonate as deeply as it does in Carrie, primarily because outside of church this family never really appeared religious or christian in any of their practices....they merely hurl antiquated insults of witch, and Satan's tool, with no real religiousity of their own. Also there is no special power beheld by Sarah, at least not o the level of Carrie's. If anything I found it more reminiscent of "The House on Haunted Hill" and even that is a loose comparison.
I found this immensely enjoyable, a pleasant surprise and thoroughly enjoyed the characters even the evil ones. The story line held my attention the whole way, and the ending was above average for my expectations of normal horror/dark suspense stories. I highly recommend this to horror fans, especially those of the haunted/possessed nature....more