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Pick-a-Shelf: Monthly -Archive > 2018-09 - Police Procedural - Reviews

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message 1: by Lyn (Readinghearts) (last edited Sep 02, 2018 02:23PM) (new)

Lyn (Readinghearts) (lsmeadows) | 2834 comments Mod
It's time to solve those crimes.....or at least read about crime solvers. Break out your magnifying glass and fingerprint dust and read away on your Police Procedurals. If your like me, this month will help you fill in the blanks on the Seriously Serial challenge, too.


message 2: by Jamie (new)

Jamie Zaccaria | 99 comments I read The Nature of the Beast. This is part of a series and although you don't need to read the others to understand the book, I think perhaps you do in order to better understand the characters.

I liked the mystery and think it went along at a solid pace. I didn't seem to care too much about the eccentric characters, maybe because I'm not familiar with them, but for whatever reason, it felt like reading a cozy mystery in that way. There's nothing bad to be said about this book, it was a good mystery, it simply didn't WOW me in any way.


message 3: by Slayermel (new)

Slayermel | 664 comments I read Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King 5*

I really enjoyed this book!
Bill Hodges a retired Detective is dealing with life after retiring from the force, and the guilt associated with going out without having solved one of the most notorious cases of his career. The Mercedes Killer!
Bill Hodges receives a letter in the mail one day that starts a chain of events, from which there is no turning back. This is something Bill Hodges has to follow through with, as it has breathed some life back into him and given him purpose once more.

This book is filled with interesting characters, and the story keeps you coming back for more. I can't wait to read the rest in this series.


message 4: by Karin (new)

Karin | 811 comments Feet of Clay by Terry Pratchett
3 stars and a heart

Captain Carrot is back along with an increasing number of Watchmen and other members of the Watch. Several murders happen with an odd assortment of clues, and the clues are confusing to say the least. We have the fun new Cheery Littlebottom who has left her home because she wants to be more feminine and has no interest in rocks, minerals or mining, and various and sundry other new characters are here.

I enjoyed this book and there was even one scene that had me laughing very hard, which is a very rare thing with a book, but it is really a 3 star read for me, nevertheless. If you enjoy the City Watch books, by all means read this. While not all of the Discworld books need to be read in order, I strongly recommend reading the City Watch sub-series in order, and this is the third one.


message 5: by Sassafrass (new)

Sassafrass (sass-a-frass) | 603 comments I decided to keep cracking away at the In Death Series by JD Robb for this one.

Missing in Death (In Death, #29.5) 9/8/18
*4 STARS*
I really liked this one but didn't love it. Most likely because it was a short story and filler in between main books. Therefore, it didn't have the flushed out feel to it that the other books in the series do. This one felt more superficial. It was hard for me to get invested trying to solve the murder like I usually do because everything was moving so quickly.

But, I love Eve, Roarke and the gang, and I love Susan Ericksen narrating so mostly I'm happy

Fantasy in Death (In Death, #30) 9/10/18
*5 STARS*
This was just about perfect. The sci-fi/futuristic part of the series was really on display in this one where the author really took the limitless possibilities that the future may have with tech right to edge of what my imagination could conceive. It added such an interesting layer to the story and I loved that. I was pretty sure who the murderer was and how he/she did it, but didn't know the in-depth how of the way it was done. That was so interesting. The author really has such a creative mind.

I was glad to see Roarke get taken care of for once. Loved how Eve got him to go along with her care of him at the end.

And of course, Susan Ericksen is the goddess of audio and did an AMAZING job narrating this one. I expected no less.


message 6: by Rosemary (new)

Rosemary | 871 comments I read City of Bones by Michael Connelly.

LA detective Harry Bosch is called to a cold case--human bones dug up by a dog that appear to be 20 to 25 years old. But the bones are a child's, and there are signs of long term abuse, so there's huge pressure from the media to find a solution. At the same time, Bosch is getting involved with a female rookie cop who's on a mission of her own, and dealing with leaks of sensitive information from somewhere in the team.

I have a friend who is a big fan of Michael Connelly and his Harry Bosch books, so I thought I'd try one. Sometimes she likes crime stories that are too gruesome for me, but this one was fine. Four stars, and I'd definitely read more in the series.


message 7: by LynnB (new)

LynnB | 1671 comments So far this month I've read 2 police procedurals.

Legacy of the Dead by Charles Todd, #4 in the Inspector Ian Rutledge series, set between the two world wars. This story takes Inspector Rutledge from England back to Scotland where his case involves a young mother who is possibly a murderer, and to whom he feels he owes a terrible debt. I liked it, but it was not my favorite of the series so far. ***

Hell Is Empty by Craig Johnson, #7 in the series. I put this series off for a long time though I was told it was good. The protagonist is a modern day rural Wyoming sheriff, which isn't in my area of interest ..... I thought. But I'm hooked on these now. I love the comradrie of the characters, the humorous tilt at times. It's just all well put together. ****


message 8: by Susan (new)

Susan | 3477 comments Mod
I read Jar city, and barely gave it 2 stars.

I just didn’t care about anything in this book. I couldn’t get interested in any of the characters - the protagonist Inspector Erlendur, his family and work colleagues, the murder victim, or any of the people interviewed in the course of the investigation.

The motivation for the crime was unusual, and the plot could’ve been interesting if everything hadn’t seemed to plod along so.

I won’t be looking for any subsequent books by this author. At least there's still time to read something better this month.


message 9: by Joyce (new)

Joyce (eternity21) | 611 comments I read Postmortem 4 stars
I really enjoyed it. This is the first Patricia Cornwell book I've read. It moved nicely and I got engaged in the characters. I will be reading more of the series. I had to look to see when the book was written because they smoked at the workplace and just mentioned that it was going to be taken away.

The character I had pegged for the guilty party was not the one. I can usually guess who it is going to be but it soft of came out of the blue. There was a lot of technical talk as the character is a medical examiner as well as the author is one too. But it was still interesting and didn't lose me in the jargon.


message 10: by Joyce (new)

Joyce (eternity21) | 611 comments Sassafrass wrote: "I decided to keep cracking away at the In Death Series by JD Robb for this one.

Missing in Death (In Death, #29.5) 9/8/18
*4 STARS*
I really liked this one but didn't love it. Most..."


I love this series as well and this is my next one up on my list. And yes Susan Ericksen is a great narrator.


message 11: by LynnB (new)

LynnB | 1671 comments Just finished The Waters of Eternal Youth, #25 in the series by Donna Leon. This series is set in Venice, Italy. I love the characters (Comissario Brunetti's team and family), the setting descriptions by the author, the sense of Venetian history and that of everyday modern life, and the plots. I have read this series in order (recommended - character development) and found only one that I felt to be so-so; the rest I have thoroughly enjoyed. My highest rating for any mystery has always been 4 stars and this is ****.


message 12: by Sassafrass (new)

Sassafrass (sass-a-frass) | 603 comments Susan wrote: "I read Jar city, and barely gave it 2 stars.

I just didn’t care about anything in this book. I couldn’t get interested in any of the characters - the protagonist Inspector Erlendur, ..."



That stinks, Susan. I give you kudos for finishing it. I hope you get to enjoy whatever book you read next.


message 13: by Sassafrass (new)

Sassafrass (sass-a-frass) | 603 comments Joyce wrote: "I read Postmortem 4 stars
I really enjoyed it. This is the first Patricia Cornwell book I've read. It moved nicely and I got engaged in the characters. I will be reading more of the ser..."


Great review, I've added that one to my list.


message 14: by Sassafrass (new)

Sassafrass (sass-a-frass) | 603 comments ok, everyone's series are sound so good, I've added a bunch to my TBR. Thanks for that. It's not like I need another book added to that monstrosity. LOL


message 15: by D.G. (last edited Sep 16, 2018 01:57PM) (new)

D.G. | 1370 comments Susan wrote: "I read Jar city, and barely gave it 2 stars.

I just didn’t care about anything in this book. I couldn’t get interested in any of the characters - the protagonist Inspector Erlendur, ..."


Funny, I read the same book - Jar City - but for me it was 3.5 stars. I agree I didn't care much for Erlendur and the whole dynamic with his family but the motive behind the murder was super interesting and the ethical situation behind the new Jar City gave me a lot of food for thought.

That said, I thought his bosses gave him a lot of leeway...if he had been set in the US, he would have needed a lot more evidence to go ahead with a lot of the things he did. Also, I listened to the book and couldn't keep the Icelandic names straight. When they mentioned a person, I could barely remember who they were.


message 16: by Christina (new)

Christina Byrne (cmbyrne87) | 161 comments For this month I read Along Came a Spider. James Patterson tends to be a hit or miss for me. Is there something wrong with me? Something I'm not getting here? I always feel kind of bad when I don't like his books because he is clearly a MAJOR bestseller. This book is huge. And I give it probably a 2.5 with me being lenient and because I'm hoping the grand scheme of the series can make it worth it. It was interesting when something was happening. But oh so much didn't happen. And Alex Cross is actually pretty racist, which would be fine (as in reading about racism is fine, not racism is fine :) ) if it seemed to have any real purpose in the book or added to his character in anyway. But it's just kind of there, all awkward like. The book seemed to drag. I wasn't really satisfied with the ending. Just meh all around. On the fence if I should continue this series......


message 17: by Sassafrass (new)

Sassafrass (sass-a-frass) | 603 comments This was a great review Christina. I've never read any Patterson books and honestly, I only know of the book through the movie which I did enjoy. It's interesting how the character in the book is different than how he was portrayed in the movie.

I think I may have to read the book just to see how I feel about it as well. Funny how a good review can make you want to read something even when the person who is reviewing didn't like the book.


message 18: by Christina (new)

Christina Byrne (cmbyrne87) | 161 comments Sassafrass wrote: "Funny how a good review can make you want to read something even when the person who is reviewing didn't like the book."
Definitely. I can't even count how many times I've read a review and I was like "Wow, that book pissed them off/made them sad/made them cuss! I better investigate!" LOL. Maybe there really is something wrong with me!


message 19: by Marina (new)

Marina (sonnenbarke) | 1431 comments Here's another one who read Jar City for this month's shelf! I gave it 2.5 stars rounded down. However, I would advise Susan not to give up on the author, since I had previously read Silence of the Grave (which is actually the one that comes after Jar City) and found it so good that I gave it 4 stars.

I didn't really care for Jar City because I found it a bit messy and unbelievable - as D.G. says, I was wondering how the whole thing would have developed had the book been set elsewhere. Is that really the situation in Iceland? Can police really do whatever they want, let alone divulge what has emerged from the investigation with anyone they feel like it? I did find Erlendur and his private life interesting, although I didn't find any of the characters likeable. But finding them interesting wasn't enough for me to really get into a novel that seemed sort of slapdash. This might be because the next book in the series, which I mentioned above, was so good, so I couldn't help comparing the two in favor of the latter.


message 20: by Elvenn (new)

Elvenn | 721 comments I read two books. The first, Echoes from the Dead by Johan Theorin, I enjoyed more than I had expected.

It started with the introduction of a few unremarkable characters that live in the middle of nowhere, in some Swedish coast that has lost most of its inhabitants and where most of the houses are only used during summer. An 80 year-old man in a retirement home sends for his daughter after he receives a little shoe, just like the one his 5 year-old grandson had been wearing years ago, the day he disappeared and was presumed drowned. Together, with the help of two other 80 year-old neighbors and the only police officer in town, they start delving into the past, in hopes of finding out what really happened that fateful day.

La hora de las sombras (The Öland Quartet #1) by Johan Theorin Rating: 3.5 stars (Because the characters really grow on you).


After that one I read The Draining Lake (Inspector Erlendur #6) by Arnaldur Indriðason, which starts when a skeleton is discovered as the waters of a lake recede. After the forensic deems it decades old, Inspector Erlendur begins to investigate in hopes of identifying the victim with only the missing persons list as starting point. This he does not only to allow the family of the deceased some closure but also to determine whether the death was result of a suicide or not, as the skeleton was found tied to a weight. But such a task may very well be impossible if the skeleton belongs to someone whose disappearance wasn't notified to the authorities...

I found the story original and entertaining but I haven't read many Nordic novels, so perhaps the subjects touched by the author weren't so unusual.

El hombre del lago by Arnaldur Indriðason Rating: 4.5 stars


message 21: by Alixendra (new)

Alixendra (travel_bug) | 16 comments Apologies I did not get to write my review in September as I had planned. But better late than never! I read The Girl in the IceRobert Bryndza. I rated it 5 stars.

One of my favorite themes in a book is a good mystery or a sense of strong suspense. The Girl in the Ice is the start of one of my new favorite series. I don't need to start another series, I'm sure some of you can relate, but I would highly recommend this one.

Detective Erika Foster, it's not often you run across such a strong female lead in a police procedural novel set in today's age- at least I haven't found any as good as this one, is on a case to investigate the murder of a young socialite from a prominent family. Pressured by her boss, the young woman's family, and the community around questioning her psychological health and well-being after losing her husband and former team in a shooting, Foster wonders if she's going crazy herself and, at times, wonders if she is actually on the correct path of finding the killer.

As she pursues the case and evidence, going against orders over and over, her now murder is turning out to be a serial killer who wants her dead too as she gets closer and closer to discovering who they are...


message 22: by Paige (new)

Paige (iampaigeb) | 80 comments The Dry
⭐⭐⭐
The Dry. Should of read it in the name really. I picked up this book because of the reviews it was getting. 4 and 5 across the board and yet at page 300 I found myself still saying it will pick up. I love myself a good ol' murder mystery but I found this one to be very slow and very repetitive at times. Almost like not much material was given. And the conclusion did not really make sense to me on how they caught this killer as almost no evidence pointed to him throughout the book. Jane hid that twist very well but almost seemed to well and then was not sure how to come back to it. I gave this a 3 star rating because it was enjoyable and probably one I would keep but to me, 4 stars is pushing it.

If you like very slow murder mysteries where you have no idea what is going on, this may be a book for you.


message 23: by Marina (new)

Marina (sonnenbarke) | 1431 comments Alixendra wrote: "Apologies I did not get to write my review in September as I had planned. But better late than never! I read The Girl in the IceRobert Bryndza. I rated it 5 stars.
..."


Looks promising. Thanks for your review. I'm adding it to my wishlist.


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