I read this because I LOVE the Plum series by this author. I have actually read almost everything he has ever written. But these just did not do it foI read this because I LOVE the Plum series by this author. I have actually read almost everything he has ever written. But these just did not do it for me the way the Plum series does. This series and some of her stand alone romance books (Manhunt, etc) were all right - but nothing great. There was at least some of her trademark humor, which I really enjoy but overall these felt really forced. It just didn't seem to flow like the Plum novels do. It felt like she made a list of reasons why the Plum novels were popular and then point by point addressed them in the rest of her novels. So, if you are at a book trade store and they are .50 cents, pick them up - they are a light and funny read. But I would never pay full price for any of the rest of her books. Only the Motor Mouth series and the Plum series....more
I like this series. It is in the same vein as the Plum series, but slightly more serious - take out most of the quirky characters and the main charactI like this series. It is in the same vein as the Plum series, but slightly more serious - take out most of the quirky characters and the main character is a lot more competent. Which is actually a big part of what makes the Plum series so enjoyable to me! But I did really like these books and will continue with the series - just not with the compulsion that I do with the Plum series!...more
I. LOVE. THESE. BOOKS. SERIOUSLY. I am obsessed with this series. And you know when your brain keeps telling you that this is ridiculous, there must bI. LOVE. THESE. BOOKS. SERIOUSLY. I am obsessed with this series. And you know when your brain keeps telling you that this is ridiculous, there must be a hundred books that are written better, or a better mystery, or whatever? Well, I don't care!!! This series is my ultimate guilty pleasure. I was hooked with the first one and have read the entire series thus far - including all the stupid mini books in-between. Now, those mini books I could do without and they always feel like an attempt to make sure they even got the loose change in my pockets, but I still get them anyway because it is like a fix until I can get the real thing. So what is so great about them? Stephanie - hilarious. I laugh out loud (a rarity for me when reading a book) constantly when reading these books. I love the murder mysteries which are often at least a step above the formula ones. I love the triangle between Ranger and Morelli and Stephanie. That is something that often gets old for me in other books or TV shows, etc. but for some reason, it just doesn't get old here for me. 13 books in and I am still captivated by the tension between the three. I love the setting - being from CT and living in NY and knowing people from Jersey - she nails that dead on! I mean, an exaggeration of it but still.... And the quirky characters. I love that. I like books that the people are really odd and funny. But it still has to be believable - I hate odd just for the sake of odd - like, hey look at me - I'm wacky - wocka wocka!! But these characters are so outrageous and I still find myself being able to believe it and go along with the book. Do things get repetitive? Sure, I mean, she blows up a car in every single book. But for me, that makes it all the more funny - I can't help it, I laugh every single time. I love how she is so clumsy and crazy and manages to get things done in spite of herself. I love how she is always battling her weight - that constant struggle between carrots and carrot cake! I love her family, the situations she gets in, her friends, her grandmother.... Really, did I mention I love these books? I can't explain it, but I am compulsive about buying the next one as soon as it comes out in paperback and I have kept the entire set and read it through again a few times. I feel that the story just gets better and better as you know the characters more and she doesn't have to spend time introducing them, she can just get on to the chaos. I tried to talk my mom into reading these books and she just couldn't get past the introduction to Morelli (which IS pretty odd - basically two kids experimenting - I just ignore it and skipped beyond it and was able to enjoy the rest of it) and all - I think she was a little too uptight (sorry mom!) to enjoy the whole feel of the series. If I had to sum up the series, I think it would have to be Funny, fast and loose!...more
I really enjoyed this book. I like murder mystery detective novels, and if you don't just pass this one by. I thought the characters were really wellI really enjoyed this book. I like murder mystery detective novels, and if you don't just pass this one by. I thought the characters were really well developed and the plot was tight. I liked the switching view points and time jumps - it kept you guessing. It also made it harder to keep hold of the facts that were going to lead you to the ending. I guessed what the end was about half way through, but I wasn't positive. Plus there were details that I didn't guess and so it still felt satisfying at the end. I liked that all the characters were very flawed - it made them more human and relatable. And I liked that the main character was so odd. It seemed more realistic to me that she would have been a very damaged and odd person after all that happened to her (any more on that and it would spoil the book). I found the actions of the female lawyer and the social worker, Kay, a little hard to believe and I did think there were a few times that the author made the main character appear more sinister than she had to, in an attempt to try and build the mystery - is she a con? is she real? is she evil? is she a victim? But again, given the background (once you finally learn all of it) I could even SOMEWHAT understand how that could happen. I thought it was gripping and read it compulsively - I just had to know what was going on. So many mystery books are too Poirot or Sherlock Holmes for me (if you don't know them, read stuffy, British and full of breaks for tea) and I thought this was a great change. I really enjoyed it and would definitely recommend it....more
I have been reading a few of the other reviews and just had to add my own two cents. I few bad reviews that I read dealt mostly with her style of writI have been reading a few of the other reviews and just had to add my own two cents. I few bad reviews that I read dealt mostly with her style of writing and their dislike of her jokes and interjections, etc. Just goes to show you that it takes all kinds! I love this book! I thought it was very scientific and she had obviously done a LOT of research for the book. There is no point that I felt she was talking about something she couldn't back up or was venturing into her own opinion, etc. That being said, I also loved that she was funny and personal the whole book. The book as the intimate style of someone telling you about a subject she knows a lot about. She asked the experts questions that many of us would have and would not ask - for decorum sake or being too afraid. But she does ask and I loved that! She was very respectful (I never felt like she was callous or rude about the deceased people she was writing about) but at the same time, she brought a curiosity and humor to what is naturally a difficult subject matter.
I didn't find her humor particularly course or "potty" humor. I thought many of her asides which were off topic, we done with footnotes, which you can choose to ignore and maintain the flow of the story or read immediately.
I also thought the subject matter was fascinating and she did a great job with it. Again, respectful when needed, a touch of levity when needed, etc. She really went in depth into the topic covering history, current practices, and all the many different things that happen to cadavers. My only complaint would be that she could have gone more in depth on certain topics!
So my basic opinion is that this is great reading for everyone. Just because the topic can be uncomfortable to think about doesn't mean that it isn't important knowledge to have. And to have it given to you with intelligence and wit - it doesn't get better than that! The only reason you would be disappointed is if you lack a sense of humor or if you were expecting an actual college text book with graphs, pictures and lab discussions. And I think that this SHOULD be a college text - it brings a humanity to a subject that is too often treated in a clinical manner....more
Ok, this one is more of a stretch. The story and plot are a little harder to swallow, but if you can just maintain that suspension of disbelief, you cOk, this one is more of a stretch. The story and plot are a little harder to swallow, but if you can just maintain that suspension of disbelief, you can really enjoy yourself. This is one of those stories that while I was reading it I really enjoyed it and went down the path Koontz led me without questioning it. When you try to describe the plot to someone after reading it is when you begin to realize how silly much of the story line is. But if I didn't question it while reading it, then I am not going to second guess it after the fact. This is not the type of book that is meant to be reflected on and taken apart after the fact. And what I really enjoyed in particular was the continuation of Odd's story - which is a character that I enjoyed so much I wanted to go along for whatever ride Koontz was taking me on. So just let go and enjoy the ride!!...more
I loved this book. I have read a lot of Dean Koontz and while I have often enjoyed his books, I have never LOVED him as an author - his work seemed p I loved this book. I have read a lot of Dean Koontz and while I have often enjoyed his books, I have never LOVED him as an author - his work seemed pretty hit or miss for me and even the hits were somewhat predictable. Not this one! I read this book at the urging of my husband and am so glad that I did. The story is dark, but compelling and the characters are so interesting. They are not fully fleshed out (you don't know tons about the character for most of the book) but not flat either. I continued the series and have read all the books to date, and loved them all. I think that the books get better as they go along, which is saying something because I liked the first one a lot! I highly recommend picking this series up, even if you are not a Koontz fan or a horror fan....more
Well, I will begin by saying that I am not a huge fan of Fantasy normally. I loved Harry Potter, and I have enjoyed other Fantasy series here and the Well, I will begin by saying that I am not a huge fan of Fantasy normally. I loved Harry Potter, and I have enjoyed other Fantasy series here and there, but overall, very traditional type Fantasy is not by thing. This book was highly recommended by a few different people that read and loved a lot of other books that I also read and loved. So, with misgivings, I picked it up. And with the first book, I was surprisingly caught up - I enjoyed the story, the characters and felt that it wasn't predictable - either in plot line or character development. I liked the retelling of a very traditional fairy tale of the witch turns people into swans who only have one day to be human again. I liked the setting - being Irish myself, I enjoyed seeing so much about the Celts and their history - myth and truth - that was obviously very well researched. I thought that the main character was a touch long suffering. And maybe a little too steadfast in the face of so many hardships (not one real angry outburst?? Just a quivering chin and slow tears falling?? REALLY?) But overall, I was willing to go with it, especially feeling that the story was essentially a retelling of a fairy tale, which very specifically has exaggerated characters to better impart the moral or point of the story. So I was happy that I enjoyed the first book, knowing that there were others to follow AND that she was a prolific author, which meant I would have many new books and series to explore. So then I began the second book. Which was still interesting, but starting to lose some of my interest. But still, overall enjoyable. I was beginning to feel that the main female characters were a little TOO perfect - suffering hardship and always being perfect, never truly stumbling or making mistakes due to normal human frustration, etc. I thought that it was more formulaic with the love story, and a departure from the concept of the first book - the reworking and humanizing an old fairy tale - but ok, I was still game and kept reading. The third book again deals with descendants of the original characters. There is another romance and it is again with "the wrong guy". The obvious misunderstandings that lead to feelings of betrayal, the recluse dad, the whole girl who is really good inside but is angry and misunderstood and therefore easily used by the wicked witch. It just was really becoming less and less interesting to me. Well, I kept reading. And it just goes on and on. By the end of the series, you are dealing with the grandchildren of the original characters, a story that has become completely obvious (I saw the ending coming at the beginning of the last book, making the entire last book a snore fest!), and just overall frustrating for me to read. I felt like I was doing homework. Curse my need to know the ending to everything! I have never stopped reading a book. I ALWAYS have to finish it because I just won't stop thinking about it and wondering if it got better or at the very least I want to know the full story so I can trash it more effectively. Given that, I have often wanted the time wasted reading the crappy book back and that is pretty much how I ultimately felt about these books. And while the first few were pretty good, you have to slog through the other terrible ones to get any conclusion or resolution. So unless you are the most die hard fantasy fan, that loves anything mages or is a proud D & D master (nothing wrong with that - just stating that it has that feel to the series), I would just avoid them all together....more