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Monthly "Reads" > Carol's August 2013

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message 1: by Carol/Bonadie (last edited Sep 02, 2013 09:00AM) (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8053 comments 36. Plum Island (John Corey, #1) by Nelson DeMille Plum Island by Nelson DeMille Read by Scott Brick. DNF

I’ve been wanting to read this forever, having had it recommended by so many fans on my various boards. But I couldn’t make it through. I really hated the main character John Corey and his juvenile attitude toward women. Every woman he met was judged according to her age and potential for “romance”, every man for his potential as competition for same women. His internal monologue and external dialogue was just too much, I finally gave up about 1/3 the way through. The plot involving the murder of two murdered scientists from Plum Island wasn’t enough to keep me going.

37. Silken Prey (Lucas Davenport, #23) by John Sandford Silken Prey by John Sandford 4/5.

Lucas Davenport is called in by the governor to look into allegations of possession of child porn by a candidate for U.S. Senate. Of course murder is quickly tacked on and Lucas is off to the races. Love my visits with the gang -- Lucas’ family, his former police colleagues (especially that Eff-in’ Flowers), etc. Their witty repartee keeps me chuckling, and the criminals are always entertaining.

38. Betrayal in Death (In Death, #12) by J.D. Robb Betrayal in Death by J.D. Robb. Read by Susan Ericksen. (4/5)

Someone is murdering people connected with Roarke. Again. Haven’t we seen this plot device before? It seems like every murder in the last four books has taken place in or been connected with a property Roarke owns, such that he always gets insinuated into the case. Not that I mind... love me some Roarke! Anyhoo, the investigation proceeds as one expects in an Eve Dallas story, this time against the backdrop of a multi-million dollar art auction by a Hollywood legend. As always the voices by Susan Ericksen keep me so entertained that I am already reserving the next book. The In Death series on audio is my comfort food.

39. The Hanging Valley (Inspector Banks, #4) by Peter Robinson The Hanging Valley by Peter Robinson. Read by James Langton. 4/5.

DI Alan Banks investigates the murder of a visiting hiker, and through it learns about some dark secrets in the town. A straightforward investigation tale with no side stories this time. Enjoyable narration by James Langton, who sailed through gender and nationality distinctions with aplomb.

40. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Read by Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne. 3 or 4 out of 5.

After I finished Gone Girl I stayed up way too late reading reviews and comments of it, it was that infuriating. While reading I was getting annoyed with (view spoiler)

Stealing Sherry’s line: I would have given it 5 stars except for the ending. I may even knock it down one more star for the spoilerish reasons stated above.

41. The Grave Tattoo by Val McDermid The Grave Tattoo by Val McDermid. Read by Kate Reading. 4/5.

McDermid is a superb writer, very good at weaving together multiple characters and story lines. This one is very different from A Place Of Execution, but it was just as easy to get drawn into. Rooted in the story of Fletcher Christian and The Mutiny on the Bounty, the story involves a Wordsworth specialist who is determined to find a rumored long lost manuscript detailing the events of the mutiny and what happened afterward. But every turn she takes to uncover the manuscript results in murder.


message 2: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8053 comments p.s. Lots of juicy news in this article, which I found while looking to confirm that the movie of Gone Girl is to be released next year with Rosamund Pike as Amy and Ben Affleck as Nick. Perfect casting! Maybe they'll clean up the ending.

http://news.moviefone.com/2013/07/25/...


message 3: by Melodie (new)

Melodie (melodieco) | 3626 comments I forgot to mention in my August reads post that I had a DNF for the month, too. It's been awhile since I've come across one that I just couldn't stand the thoughts of finishing. Picked up Night Film by Marisha Pessl Night Film and did about 75 pages and then just had to say, "No way!" I know it's getting all this great buzz and everything, but it was boring the crap out of me!

Oh, and Roarke is the reason I read the In Death books. Haven't picked one up in awhile. Need to see where I left off and maybe get one in this month!


message 4: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14607 comments Carol: Your comment on Plum Island and DeMille'e depiction of John Corey as having a juvenile attitude about women is an interesting point. I applaud you for your convictions when the MC was unlikeable.
I don't tolerate books with out of date attitudes the same way as I might have 15 years ago either. Though those sorts of people are still around, and I don't think we used to have as much choice about it, or ignored it or both.
I have noticed that attitudes like that date some older back-lists of some series books, almost all of the romance novels I enjoyed in the 80's or early 90's strike a wrong chord with me now, and even some 'classic or famous' novels turn me off that way.
Plum Island was first published in 1997, and I shelved it on Goodreads with the comment I read it in Jan-1998, though it isn't even in my book journal (started the journal in 1998) so I can't remember how I felt about it then. The entire conspiracy theory of political based novels is so different now too, those can also seem dated. It is almost like you had to read it at the time to gain the full effect. I wonder if some of the authors cringe today at the way they wrote some of the attitudes back then.


message 5: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14607 comments Carol: A month with Lucas Davenport and Roarke! LOL
I agree with your spoiler on Gone Girl. My head was doing a 360 as I progressed through the convoluted tale. It does look like good casting for the movie!


message 6: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8053 comments Melodie wrote: "I forgot to mention in my August reads post that I had a DNF for the month, too. It's been awhile since I've come across one that I just couldn't stand the thoughts of finishing. Picked up [bookc..."

Melodie, I had just read a good review about Night Film and was wondering about it. There was a reason I didn't race off to reserve but I think it was just that my TBR is too long as it is. Now I'm curious again.


message 7: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8053 comments Ann, I think I recounted elsewhere that when I embarked on my dream of re-reading the Travis McGee backlog I was caught up short by my dislike of his attitude toward women... very paternalistic and condescending. Yikes, what a disappointment. It may have also been that the reading of it that really grated me the wrong way. i'm tempted to pick up the third in print and see if it strikes me the same way. I really loved those books but I read them in the '60s or '70s when I would have been in my late teens/early 20s. As you point out that also may have made a difference. In July I read the first Nero Wolfe and likewise was putt off. It would be sad to think that all the mystery masters that came before (Chandler, MacDonald,etc.) wrote with that sensibility. I didn't read them back in the day and have been looking forward to getting to them.

Ann wrote: "I have noticed that attitudes like that date some older back-lists of some series books, almost all of the romance novels I enjoyed in the 80's or early 90's strike a wrong chord with me now, and even some 'classic or famous' novels turn me off that way. ..."


message 8: by Dan in AZ (new)

Dan in AZ | 2678 comments Nice month, Carol.


message 9: by Barry (new)

Barry (barrypz) | 3050 comments Back when these were new, my wife felt that the Travis McGee books did not treat women well. I was unenlightened then (aren't you glad I have come so far?). I figure at this point they are books for a different era, and I could no longer relate them to the gender culture of today than I could relate Sam Clemens to the racial culture of today.
So like a shark, I will swim forward.


message 10: by Barry (new)

Barry (barrypz) | 3050 comments Carol, I would stay away from the DeMilles. The attributes you do not like only grow more severe in the following books.


message 11: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14607 comments Barry: That is probably why I have several of his languishing on the tbr pile, and yet enjoy them when I get to them. On the one hand, his Vietnam era of attitudes is familiar, and on the other hand we have come far since then. Thinking of them as from a different era is a good way to classify them (though what that says about me ..... )
Barry wrote: "Carol, I would stay away from the DeMilles. The attributes you do not like only grow more severe in the following books."


message 12: by Susie (new)

Susie Fevella (susieinks) | 1639 comments I keep picking up Gone Girl when I see it at the library, but then I put it back on the shelf. Maybe I'll try it some day when I'm desperate for something to read :)


message 13: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8053 comments Barry wrote: "Carol, I would stay away from the DeMilles. The attributes you do not like only grow more severe in the following books."

Thanks for the warning, I was pondering the matter but with so many good books awaiting me wasn't close to succumbing. Your remark seals the deal for now.


message 14: by Carol/Bonadie (last edited Sep 02, 2013 02:23PM) (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8053 comments Susie in KS wrote: "I keep picking up Gone Girl when I see it at the library, but then I put it back on the shelf. Maybe I'll try it some day when I'm desperate for something to read :)"

Susie, if you ever want a little more content than my spoiler-free blurb provided feel free to email me. I'm glad I read it because I now know what the fuss was (and wasn't) about, but I'd be hard pressed to say flat out to anyone else that they should read it.

edit: the reason I finally picked it up was because I did want to read it eventually before someone spoilered it for me, AND I was searching for something to listen to and it came in at the right time.


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