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Monthly "Reads" > Marcy's August

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message 1: by Marcy (new)

Marcy | 865 comments As Husbands Go by Susan Isaacs - Long Island housewife Susie Gersten is left alone with her 4 yr old triplets after her Plastic Surgeon husband is found murdered in a prostitute's apt. Despite the prosecutor's belief that the cops have nabbed the right person, Susie doesn't believe that call-girl Dorinda Dillon is the murderer. In Isaac's previous book, Compromising Positions, the amateur wife's sleuthing was humorous, interesting and entertaining. In this book, I found the same attempt humorless, unbelievable and boring. This was one book I should have abandoned early on, but I wanted to like it since I had enjoyed many of this author's earlier ones.

The Spy by Clive Cussler and Justin Scott (audio) - The year is 1908 and someone is murdering America's preeminent naval research scientists and developers. Isaac Bell, of the renowned Van Dorn Detective Agency, sets out to discover who, either domestic or international, is behind this attempt to cripple America's newly expanding navy. I thought this was a great thriller with lots of action and suspense. I especially loved the wealth of historic period detail and interesting characters.

River of Darkness: A John Madden Novel by Rennie Airth - John Madden has returned from WW I to England and to his position at Scotland Yard as a man deeply affected by his wartime experiences and the deaths of his wife and daughter. John is assigned to investigate a particularly brutal murder of a family. In my opinion, this book, part thriller and part police procedural, was excellent on many levels. The early evolution of exploring the psychological basis for crime motivations was nicely portrayed as were the possibilities of political forces and personalities affecting investigations. Mostly, I enjoyed the writing, the rich characters and the very real sense of the countryside in post-war England.

Sullivan’s Justice by Nancy Taylor Rosenberg -Carolyn Sullivan, a probation officer, single mom and wonder woman is the sister of a man suspected in a double homicide. She's also the only officer who can deal with an evil prisoner.Numerous sub-plots intertwine, though not very effectively. It was a chore to finish this one, poorly written as it was with characters about whom I cared nothing.

Promise of a Lie by Howard Roughan - Dr. David Remler is a widowed psychologist who falls for a married patient who wants to kill her husband. Then a late-night phone call convinces him that the worst has happened. What follows next is an elaborate frame-up, which although dependent on coincidence, luck and the many "too stupid to live" actions of the main character, makes for a well-written, fun, fast-moving thriller with likable characters. I read this book on the recommendation of a friend who assured me that the Howard Roughan stand-alone books are nothing like his collaborations with James Patterson and she was definitely right. (This is a very good thing from my perspective.)

New Tricks (Andy Carpenter #7) by David Rosenfelt - As an independently wealthy New Jersey attorney, Andy Carpenter has the luxury of picking his cases and often dogs have become his clients. Because of his legal canine expertise, his pro bono assigned client in this light-hearted mystery is Waggy, a Bernese mountain puppy whose custody is contested after the murder of his multimillionaire, scientific genius owner. The plot thickens after Andy assumes initial custodial care of his client when 1 dog claimant is killed and the other charged with double homicide. This was a witty, fun read with surprising twists. It kept my interest and entertained me. A great summer read.

Blood-Dimmed Tide (John Madden #2) by Rennie Airth - In this sequel to River of Darkness, a decade has past and John Madden has retired from Scotland Yard and is living a peaceful life on a farm with his wife and children. The greater world around him, however, is not so serene. Even English farm life is disrupted by the world depression and the Nazi rise to power in Germany is very unsettling. Madden chances upon the body of a young town girl who has been brutally raped and murdered and is soon drawn into the investigation. Soon it is obvious that a serial killer is on the loose, possibly someone with secret intelligence ties to Germany. I thought this was another great historical thriller by Rennie Airth. He conveys a great sense of time and place with interesting characters and a plot which flows nicely. I look forward to reading the next, and last book in this series.

Fever Dream by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child - Fast paced and full of action, this thriller featuring brilliant and eccentric FBI agent Pendergast was a good, light and entertaining book. Pendergast discovers that what he believed to be the accidental death of his wife 12 years earlier was really a murder. He enlists the help of his sometimes cohort, Det. Vinnie D'Agosta and uncovers a web of deceit and danger. While I enjoyed the story, I felt that the sub-plot of Pendergast's ward, Constance Green was distracting and incomplete, as was the ending in general. All in all, a solid but not great read.

Ceremony in Death by J.D. Robb - This 5th in the series book is just like the ones which preceded it - a light easy read made enjoyable by the development of the main characters. In this installment, Eve investigates the death of a fellow officer and soon discovers a trail of murder and deceit involving a satanist cult and a wiccan group. I liked it well enough to make my way further through the series.


message 2: by Melodie (new)

Melodie (melodieco) | 3588 comments I read NEW TRICKS in August, too, and really liked it.


message 3: by Barry (new)

Barry (barrypz) | 2940 comments Fever Dream seemed to be working as hard at setting up future novels as resolving the current one. enjoyed the books, but agree with your observations.


message 4: by Donnajo (new)

Donnajo | 3471 comments I think I read Fever dream on the nook as a sample that it came with. It was a interesting sample and I'm thinking about going back to his first book in the series.
Nancy Taylor Rosenberg used to be a author I would read all her books right away. But for some reason I got behind around before the Sullivan's series. I still have one hc of her's unread on my bookcase. And I have the first sullivan's book in pb unread.


message 5: by Sandi (new)

Sandi (sandin954) | 1181 comments Looks like you had a good month. I am also a big fan of Rennie Airth's John Madden series. I just wish he would decide to expand the trilogy.

The Spy looks like a fun book so I requested the first book in the series The Chase on audio. It will be my first book by Clive Cussler.


message 6: by Marcy (new)

Marcy | 865 comments DJ - I think you would like the Pendergast series. It's quirky and different.

Sandi - I can't wait to get to the last book in Airth's series.Dirk Pitt series (which is also good), but I love the Isaac Bell character in The Chase books.


message 7: by Marcy (new)

Marcy | 865 comments Melodie wrote: "I read NEW TRICKS in August, too, and really liked it."

When I picked up New Tricks I didn't expect to like it as much as I did. Just goes to prove that I need to be more open minded about my choices.


message 8: by Brakedrum (last edited Sep 02, 2010 01:04PM) (new)

Brakedrum | 1203 comments Marcy wrote: "As Husbands Go by Susan Isaacs - Long Island housewife Susie Gersten is left alone with her 4 yr old triplets after her Plastic Surgeon husband is found murdered in a prostitute's apt. Despite the..."

I have the Spy on my tbr virtual pile. Bad enough I have physical books laying around, now I have a virtual pile. It just gets better and better. LOL


message 9: by Barry (new)

Barry (barrypz) | 2940 comments ...Bad enough I have physical books laying around, now I have a virtual pile.
At least you don't have to look at it.


message 10: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14202 comments Marcy:
I have intended to read River of Darkness forever! You have rekindled my interest! Great month!

Marcy wrote: "ARiver of Darkness: A John Madden Novel by Rennie Airth - John Madden has returned from WW I to England and to his position at Scotland Yard as a man deeply affected by his wartime experiences and the deaths of his wife and daughter. John is assigned to investigate a particularly brutal murder of a family. In my opinion, this book, part thriller and part police procedural, was excellent on many levels. The early evolution of exploring the psychological basis for crime motivations was nicely portrayed as were the possibilities of political forces and personalities affecting investigations. Mostly, I enjoyed the writing, the rich characters and the very real sense of the countryside in post-war England. "


message 11: by Susie (new)

Susie Fevella (susieinks) | 1598 comments Thanks Marcy! I always love your reviews!


message 12: by Marcy (new)

Marcy | 865 comments Thanks, Susie :-)


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