"Silent to the Bone" deals with a number of issues; it confronts divorce, friendship, sexual attraction, parent and child relationships, second marria...more"Silent to the Bone" deals with a number of issues; it confronts divorce, friendship, sexual attraction, parent and child relationships, second marriages and child abuse.
The book starts with a 911 call and the caller cannot speak, Branwell Zamborska is struck dumb from the moment he makes the call. Something traumatic has happened and now Branwell is silent to the bone.
Branwell's baby sister suffers from encephalitis and Branwell is blamed for causing the harm. Connor who is Branwell's friend knows that Branwell would not harm Nikki, so Connor becomes actively engaged in the solving of the mystery. With the help of his older half sister, Connor solves the mystery to Branwell's silence.
I found this book exciting and entertaining in some parts and then it would seem to get dull and then pick up again. The book definitely tries to deal with a number of issues and is quite successful in the way it handles them. (less)
The year is 1915 and Sherlock Holmes is retired, but a young lady of fifteen years falls into his life and she becomes his protégé. Mary Russell is or...moreThe year is 1915 and Sherlock Holmes is retired, but a young lady of fifteen years falls into his life and she becomes his protégé. Mary Russell is orphaned and lives with an aunt who is only interested in Mary's inheritance and does not offer Mary any loving guidance. Sherlock Holmes takes the job of teaching Mary all the skills he has learned in his detective work. Mary Russell exhibits an impressive intelligence and is able to absorb what Sherlock teaches her.
As she attends school at Oxford Mary spends her holidays with Holmes and they become involved in detective work together. Mary rescues a young girl from kidnappers and is able to help the young girl deal emotionally with her lose of innocence. Mary is able to relate to the girl's emotional turmoil through her own experience of losing her parents and brother in a car accident.
In the crimes that Holmes and Mary solve there is a common menace. A criminal master mind has been stalking Holmes and the ones he loves and all of their lives are at risk. Mary and Sherlock Holmes have to combine their great minds to figure out who this criminal mastermind is.
"The Beekeeper's Apprentice" by Laurie R. King is the first book in a series a books with Mary Russell being a detective. In this first book she learns the basics of detective work along the side of the great Sherlock Holmes himself.
There are a few things I found hard to deal with in this book. The first thing was the treatment of Dr Watson, he is treated like a baboon and there is a general feeling that Holmes wants nothing to do with Watson now that he has Mary to work with. I think it would have made more sense if Watson was embraced and still loved, rather then shunned and ridiculed. He plays a very small role so why debase him?
Another weakness with mystery novels is that so many words are spent on developing the scene of the crime and the detective work and as a result there are fewer words left for developing the characters. One thing I love about reading is falling in love with the characters and having them become my new best friends and it just does not fully develop into that type of relationship in this book, there are a few times it comes close, for example when Mary and Sherlock are in Palestine I truly feel Mary’s love for who she is and how she lost her family, I loved that section, but overall they did not become fast friends with me.
This is a female power book; Mary is a great example of a female with a great intellect and of someone who gets the job done right. “The Beekeeper’s Apprentice” is an excellent read for young adult female readers who are looking for strong female characters. (less)
When I read the back of this book in the bookstore I was excited. I am a chemistry buff and when I read that the main character was an aspiring eleven...moreWhen I read the back of this book in the bookstore I was excited. I am a chemistry buff and when I read that the main character was an aspiring eleven year old chemist named Flavia de Luce I just had to buy it.
The book takes place in the summer of 1950. Flavia finds a man lying in the cucumber patch and watches him die. Thus starts the mystery of who killed this man and why a dead bird with a postage stamp pinned on its beak was found on the doorstep of Flavia's home.
Flavia is the youngest of three girls in a family who has lost the matriarch of the home. A budding chemist who loves to torture her sisters, Flavia is smart and loves to roam and learn. Her father is into philately and is removed emotionally from the girls and seems quite unaware of their lives. When the father is arrested for murder, Flavia is determined to solve the mystery of the dead man from the cucumber patch.
I was expecting a lot from this book and unfortunately I was disappointed. Mysteries always seem to disappoint me due to lack of character development and so much emphasis on plot, but I thought this one might be different, but it was not. I was hoping for more chemistry and more attachment to characters; the book did not deliver either.
"The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie" by Alan Bradley should appeal to those who love mysteries without gore, violence or bad language. It is a squeaky clean book, which is a good thing. It contains enough chemistry and poisons to entertain those who just want a spattering of chemistry knowledge and it also provides a good dose of knowledge about philately. (less)