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Book Related Banter > April, 2018 What are YOU reading?

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message 1: by John (new)

John | 259 comments This is a continuation of the monthly "What are you reading" discussion that Michael started in the Amazon Kindle forum. This great discussion group has been enjoyed by so many .

"Here's how this works - list a book you are currently reading or just recently read on your Kindle (insert the product link by clicking add book/author above the text box so others can find it), whether you would recommend it, did you get it free, and anything else you would care to share.
And here's the standard continuation of each month's request for prior participants in the poll: if you like or dislike a title you have read, in addition to telling us about it in this informal poll, how about writing a book review on the Amazon website? The review will certainly last and be visible a lot longer than this poll will. If you're like me, you look at the customer reviews in order to see if you want to investigate a book further. Since we are all a little community here, and while I realize each review is each person's opinion and we may not like the same thing, I know your friends and online discussion neighbors would appreciate your honest assessment of the likes and dislikes without providing a spoiler - I know I would! Your reviews don't need to be a long dissertation of the book, I like to keep them short, sweet, and (hopefully) to the point.

Many thanks to Michael for starting this thread and for all the posters who keep it going. I know I have found many an enjoyable book from this thread.

Authors should NOT use this discussion group to advertise their books. There are other discussion groups for that purpose.

Happy Easter, everyone!


message 2: by Suze73 (new)

Suze73 | 192 comments I finished How It All Began by Penelope Lively. She’s a British author and this book has that light feel that British authors are so good at. Yet it is a deceptively deep book. It explores how one single event has a ripple effect through multiple lives - the butterfly effect. It also deals with the effects of aging; the author was near 80 when she wrote it. Class, events outside our control, changes in society over time, and changes in marriages over time all come into play. I really enjoyed this and will probably read more by this author. She is a darn good writer.

message 3: by Jan (new)

Jan | 115 comments I just finished The Immortalists. I almost stopped reading it early on but I'm glad that I stuck with it. It is about four siblings who visit a fortune teller. She tells each of them the date they will die. The book tells each child's story and how this information impacts their lives.

message 4: by Loriltx (new)

Loriltx | 19 comments I finished Cold Granite, the first in an 11-book detective series by Stuart McBride. This was written in 2005 and takes place in Aberdeen, Scotland. Some pretty stupid police work here, but I find the first in a detective series is usually the weakest so I am going to assume that subsequent books will only get better. I like the characters.

I also completed The Ghostwriter by Alexandra Torre. I didn’t like this book at first—the main character was so unlikeable. But the story was well written and drew you in. A dark read, but a “wow, I didn’t see that coming” read. I would definitely recommend.

message 5: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished Mark Greaney's THE GRAY MAN (The Gray Man). Court Gentry (The Gray Man) is too much. Having a deep abdominal wound stitched while he drives a car across the country at night just isn't gonna happen. Then, in a matter of minutes, he's running a hundred yard dash in full combat gear--Please. Two stars for this one.

Next, it is back to deep space with DAUNTLESS (Dauntless) by Jay Allan.


message 6: by Loriltx (new)

Loriltx | 19 comments Finished the next installment of C.S. Harris’s Sebastian St. Cyr series, Why Kill the Innocent. I just love this series. Always exciting, and always educational. This one was a little bit of a tear jerker. I started it the early afternoon and ended up staying up til the wee hours of the morning to finish.

message 7: by CBRetriever (new)

CBRetriever | 438 comments finished

Roger Zelazny's Alien Speedway Series (3 books)
- Clypsis
- Pitfall
- The Web
wasn't real impressed with these books
False Colours and Lady of Quality by Georgette Heyer - both were good
All My Sins Remembered by Joe Haldeman - this was OK
Killing Pretty - part of the Sandman Slim series by Richard Kadrey - a little better than OK, but I think I like Tad Williams' Bobby Dollar series which is similar a bit more

message 8: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished THE EYE OF SHIVA (The Eye of Shiva) by Alex Lukeman. Typical Project undertaking--lots of bodies and destruction. Who is trying to start a nuclear war between India and Pakistan? Who is the mysterious AEON Group, and what are their aims and intentions? Only the Project people know! Three stars.

EXTINCTION CODE (Extinction Code ) by James Prescott is next in line.


message 9: by Suze73 (new)

Suze73 | 192 comments I finished Golden State by Michelle Richmond. It’s definitely an odd one, but I liked it. It takes place on the day California is voting on whether to secede from the US. A doctor at the VA hospital in San Francisco is trying to get to her sister, who is about to give birth. Meanwhile, a crazy patient of hers is holed up in her office, having taken several of her coworkers hostage. It’s told in the first person, which makes it seem very real.

message 10: by Jan (new)

Jan | 115 comments I finished Flat Broke with Two Goats: A Memoir of Appalachia which was the FLP's Big Read (everyone can check it out now). It was a three star for me. I did like the recipes at the end of each chapter!
Also finished The Chalk Man: A Novel. It was a mystery about a body found in the woods by four young men. Pretty good.
I listened to When Breath Becomes Air. A memoir of a brilliant neurosurgeon who dies of cancer at a young age. 5 star for me.
I had a hard time getting into The Immortalistsbut I'm glad I finished it. It would be a good book discussion for book clubs.

message 11: by CinCO (new)

CinCO | 54 comments Linked Through Time

Decent time travel story.

Love Story, With Murders

Second book in Welsh detective series. Enjoyed it.

Tea with Emma

Meh. Not my cup of tea (bad pun, sorry!).

message 12: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished EXTINCTION CODE (Extinction Code) by James Prescott. Typical Book 1 in a series--defines the good guys and the bad guys, and sets them into conflict with each other. Three stars for this one.

Steve Berry's latest Cotton Malone adventure THE BISHOP'S PAWN (The Bishop's Pawn), a loaner from FLP, is next on the list.


message 13: by CBRetriever (new)

CBRetriever | 438 comments Spiritride by Mark Shepherd from a Mercedes Lackey series. Very formulaic

Katherine by Anya Seton = a reread from my teen years. It holds up quite well but unfortunately has the dreaded ragged right edge

Fallout by Sara Paretsy. New setting (not in Chicago) so a bit of new interest

Theft of Swords by Michael Sullivan. These were OK, but Fritz Leiber and Lynn Flewelling did it better. I'll probably read more of the series if they're cheap enough.

message 14: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished THE BISHOP'S PAWN (The Bishop's Pawn) by Steve Berry, a loaner from FLP. Cotton Malone's introduction to the Magellan Group, a not-so-secret bunch of covert agents. He is involved in securing documents relating to FBI activities in the late 1960's. Interesting story, despite the fact Malone has no covert agent training. Three stars for this one.

TFS GUARDIAN (TFS Guardian) by Tori Harris is next in line.


message 15: by Suze73 (new)

Suze73 | 192 comments I finished The Lost City of the Monkey God: A True Story by Douglas Preston. It’s a non-fiction account of an expedition into remote jungle in Honduras to look for an ancient city. Preston is an accomplished author who was brought along on the trip to write about it (for National Geographic, I think). It was good, but parts of it were repetitive. It read as if he didn’t really have enough material to turn it into a full length book, so he had to stretch the material a bit. The last third of the book is all about the parasite he and several other members of the team picked up. But the writing is good and I did learn a lot, so 4/5 stars.

message 16: by CBRetriever (new)

CBRetriever | 438 comments Finished:

Blow Fly by Patricia Cornwell - OK
Psycho Shop by Alfred Bester - really odd little book but interesting

message 17: by CinCO (new)

CinCO | 54 comments Extraction

I really enjoy the Pendergast series, this short story was just ok.

Half-Off Ragnarok

This is a fun, light series. The main character changed between the last book and this one. Still the same family, and Alex is interesting too.

message 18: by Andry (last edited Apr 22, 2018 11:29PM) (new)

message 19: by C. (new)

message 20: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished TFS GUARDIAN (TFS Guardian) by Tori Harris. This is the fifth book in the Terran Fleet Command series, the tale of Captain Tom Prescott and the Terran Fleet Ship (TFS) Fugitive and his intrepid crew. TFS GUARDIAN is not quite up to the five star level of the previous books, but is still a strong four stars.

Staying in deep space with DAUNTLESS Dauntless), by Jay Allan.


message 21: by LaSonya (new)

LaSonya | 2 comments I’m reading Wild Ride Cowboy by Maisey Yates

message 22: by C. (new)

message 23: by CBRetriever (new)

CBRetriever | 438 comments The Witches of Eileanan by Kate Forsyth
It was named Best First Novel by Locus in the year it was first published. It held up pretty well and I'll likely get the rest of the series

Swords in the Mist by Fritz Lieber = excellent

Book of the Dead andDust by Patricia Cornwell = OK

message 24: by CBRetriever (new)

CBRetriever | 438 comments Finished Spiderlight by Adrian Tchaikovsky which was actually pretty good when I made it past the bit with the spiders at the beginning. It was funny even

“Working in a small space, Tchaikovsky gives us sympathetic characters, real moral dilemmas, and emotional depth, all shot through with a sly humor that kept me grinning throughout. If, like me, you’re a D&D fan who always wondered about the ethics of Detect Evil or what the orcs eat in Mordor, you will love this one. ― Django Wexler, author of the Shadow Campaigns series"

message 25: by isanythingopen (new)

isanythingopen | 2 comments I am currently working my way through the Discworld series. Currently I'm on book 24.
The series has been entertaining, although the books with the 3 witches are my favorites.

message 26: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished a couple of books while I was traveling to my granddaughter's college graduation. ARTEMIS (Artemis) by Andy Weir is an OK read, but no where near the compelling read of THE MARTIAN (The Martian). Followed that up with DAUNTLESS (Dauntless) by Jay Allan. This is the next chapter in the Tyler Barron/Andi Lafarge saga. The Confederation is locked in an epic struggle with the Union, who has acquired an ancient weapon of unimaginable destructive power. Add in some political double dealing on both sides, and things get very tense, very quickly.


message 27: by Suze73 (new)

Suze73 | 192 comments I finished Fascism: A Warning by former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. Read it a weep for America and the world. 5/5 Stars.

On a lighter note, I am reading a collection of essays by SF writer Ursula Le Guin, No Time to Spare: Thinking About What Matters. They are witty and thoughtful and beautifully written. I haven’t read any of her novels, but I probably will soon because I adore her after reading these essays.

I am also reading a light mystery, A Cruise to Die For by Charlotte and Aaron Elkins.

message 28: by CBRetriever (new)

CBRetriever | 438 comments Finished

two Georgette Heyer books: The Nonesuch and The Toll-Gate both of which were excellent


Black Light by Elizabeth hand - didn't really care for this one


An Excellent Mystery by Ellis Peters = good read


The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley which was a good, entertaining read


The Last Dark by Steven Erikson. I had been putting this off for years and finally ead and finished it. It was a long, slow slog

message 29: by John (last edited May 13, 2018 08:08AM) (new)

John | 259 comments Finished THE WHITE FLEET (The White Fleet) by Jay Allan. This is the seventh book in a series, and it doesn't quite match up to the previous ones.

Not sure what will be next, probably GNOSIS: LEGACY WAR BOOK 1 (Gnosis: Legacy War Book 1) by John Walker, a KOLL selection for May.


message 30: by C. (new)

C. | 70 comments The Cats That Played The Market. This is a great series of books! On book duds yet!

The Cats That Played the Market (The Cats That #4) by Karen Anne Golden

message 31: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished GNOSIS: LEGACY WAR BOOK 1 (Gnosis: Legacy War Book 1 by John Walker. Pretty much what you expect for a space opera. The characters are fairly well defined, and the plot follows an almost standard story line--bad guys are after an ancient artifact of tremendous power, and the good guys are trying to get there first. One problem with GNOSIS: LEGACY WAR BOOK 1, it does not end, it stops--in the middle of efforts to repair battle damage, secure landing parties (yes, their Marines do have boots on the ground, even in deep space) and prepare for a hyperspace link. Three stars for this one.

Next in line is THE BELIAL FALL (The Belial Fall) by R. D. Brady, the latest in her series about Delaney McPherson and her on going battle with the Fallen (angels).


message 32: by CBRetriever (new)

CBRetriever | 438 comments The City on the Edge of Forever: The Original Teleplay by Harlan Ellison = original script for Star Trek episode with lots of ranting by Ellison

The Shore of Women by Pamela Sargeant - this one was fairly interesting

The Raven in the Foregate by Ellis Peters - good book, but ending was seen from a long way off

message 33: by CinCO (new)

CinCO | 54 comments The Great Passage

A very interesting story about creating a Japanese dictionary.

message 34: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished THE BELIAL FALL (The Belial Fall), by R. D. Brady. This is the continuation of her series about dealing with the Fallen (angels). Highlights people's reaction to the unknown. Four stars for this one.

James Rollins THE DEMON CROWN (The Demon Crown), a loaner from FLP is next on the list.


message 35: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished THE DEMON CROWN (The Demon Crown) by James Rollins, a loaner from FLP. SciFi involving genetically mutated wasps with a tremendous amount of action over a period of four or five days. Four stars for this one.

Not sure what's next, outer space or ground warfare. Time will tell.


message 36: by CinCO (new)

CinCO | 54 comments The Speed of Sound

FirstRead. Interesting story about people on the autism spectrum and the shadowy agencies that want to use any viable ideas they come up with.

message 37: by Sonya (new)

Sonya marie madden | 266 comments Plum island

message 38: by Suze73 (new)

Suze73 | 192 comments I finished No Time to Spare: Thinking About What Matters by Ursula K. Le Guin. This is a wonderful collection of essays written when she was in her 80’s. She’s best known for her science fiction, which I haven’t read. I definitely will now that I’ve been introduced to her by way of her essays. 5/5 stars.

I also finished A Cruise to Die For by Charlotte and Aaron Elkins. It was a fun, light mystery. 4/5 stars.

I had A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership by James Comey out from the library, but I’m letting it go back unread. I’m just not in the mood for it.

Another long awaited library hold came in, A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. I’ve been looking forward to this one.

message 39: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished ODYSSEUS AWAKENING (Odysseus Awakening) BY Evan Currie. SciFi with an artificial intelligence trying to find himself, and causing some problems in the process. Four stars.

Next is JET--FORSAKEN (Forsaken) by Russell Blake.


message 40: by CinCO (new)

CinCO | 54 comments The Reincarnationist

Interesting and exciting, but a bit long and not a very satisfying ending. People in this book remember their past lives and try to figure out if their flashbacks really happened.

message 41: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished JET--FORSAKEN (Forsaken) by Russell Blake, the continuing story of a "wants to be retired" secret agent who keeps being "unretired". This one is four stars, although it took longer to develop than previous stories.

Next up is a dtb from my local library, Clive Cussler's THE GRAY GHOST (The Gray Ghost).


message 42: by CinCO (new)

CinCO | 54 comments The Wheel Mages by Aimee Davis

Quite enjoyable good magicians vs bad magicians story. First in the series.

The Plastic Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg

KOLL. 4th book in this series. Very fun stories of magicians in early-1900s London.

message 43: by John (last edited Jun 14, 2018 06:43AM) (new)

John | 259 comments Finished Clive Cussler's THE GRAY GHOST (The Gray GhostRemi and Sam Fargo do it again--solving a hundred year old mystery and helping a friend. As usual, Clive Cussler manages a wild adventure with NO profane or vulgar language. Amazing feat these days. Four Stars.

Next in line is LOST SYSTEMS: LEGACY WAR BOOK 2 (Lost Systems: Legacy War Book 2) by John Walker, a KOLL selection for this month.


message 44: by Sonya (new)

Sonya marie madden | 266 comments Cherry by Mary karr

message 45: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished LOST SYSTEMS: LEGACY WAR BOOK 2 (Lost Systems: Legacy War Book 2) by John Walker, a KOLL selection for this month. When a couple of ill-tempered, war mongering groups attempt to recover data describing a source of almost unlimited power, it falls to the starship Gnosis and its intrepid captain Desmond Bradford and his crew to prevent this from happening. It's interesting watching events unfold, so this one gets four stars.

W. E. B. Griffin's THE OUTLAWS (The Outlaws) a loaner from FLP is next in line.


message 46: by Sonya (new)

Sonya marie madden | 266 comments Arctic drift

message 47: by CinCO (new)

CinCO | 54 comments Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions

I have no idea how to describe this book. It is a classic satire of the Victorian era, but much of it passed me by. I did like the math stuff though.

message 48: by Suze73 (last edited Jun 23, 2018 01:00AM) (new)

Suze73 | 192 comments I finished A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. What a beautiful book! Exquisitely written. I highly recommend it. It’s the story of a Russian aristocrat who is sentenced to a life of house arrest in a elegant hotel in Moscow after the revolution. The author’s previous novel, Rules of Civility, is also excellent.

message 49: by John (new)

John | 259 comments Finished THE OUTLAWS (The Outlaws) by W. E. B. Griffin, a loaner from FLP. Charlie Castillo is at it again--bringing in a couple of high ranking Russian defectors, and saving the world from a deadly poison. Four stars for this one.

Next in line is another book in Griffin's Presidential Agent series, COVERT WARRIORS (Covert Warriors), another loaner from FLP.


message 50: by CinCO (new)

CinCO | 54 comments The Blood Mage

Second book in this series. It is a lot of gloom and doom, with a few bright spots. Still a good story, but not light and fluffy.

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