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Monthly "Reads" > Barry's extra long February

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message 1: by Barry (new)

Barry (barrypz) | 3053 comments Taken: Robert Crais
A little reminder, one of my favorite lines in fiction came from Joe Pike: “War is what I do” and once again, he aids in the rescue of Cole, who is in just slightly over his head. If you start this, make sure you have time to finish this. Well paced like a freight train is well placed, Crais has done it again. (A)

Catching Fire: Suzanne Collins
Book 2 in the Hunger Games series. The plot is following in the basic direction I thought it would, but the devil, as always, is in the details. Book 2 is a bridge, a series of events both hopeful and horrific that lead us to book 3. (A-)

Gideon’s Corpse: Preston/Child
I have heard several authors mention how a single item in a news article could become the basis for a while book, and I remember an item a couple years back that most certainly was the spark for this one, but to tell you would be to give away too much of the mystery. Gideon;s Corpse is the kind of wild ride we expect from Preston/Child, a mystery surrounded by a thriller, with the thrills and hopeless situations coming at a rapid pace. I was willing to figive the autors some of the liberty they took with facts, and maybe physics. (B+)

The Exterminators: Bill Fitzhugh
FItzhugh is back! This book follows his “Pest Control”, a tale of an exterminator that all the primo assassins of the world thought was really a master assassin known as “the exterminator”. The book picks up shortly after the other ended, and leaves the characters to cope with a life that had become very complicated, and soon becomes more complicated. (must be caper month) (B+)

Pineapple Grenade: Tim Dorsey
Another Serge Storms caper. Serge remains himself, only more so, and the events around him spin out of control as rapidly as ever. I do credit Dorsey with seeing the same world we all see, but then describing it in its true absurdity. (B)

Heart of a Killer; David Rosenfelt
His second stand- alone. The first was lacking, but certainly showed promise. Much of the promise was met in this book, and I would have graded it higher if he stayed away from Nuclear Power plants. The problem, of course, is that I know too much about them, and cannot suspend disbelief when he postulates a problem that could be solved by the cleaning crew. (B).

Left for Dead: JA Jance
An Ali Reynolds mystery, this is the series that almost made me stop reading Jance altogether. Thankfully, the series stopped being written in a manner offensive to men and became more evenhanded. This is a fairly bloody book, littered with more bodies than Jance would normally slaughter, but it is balanced by the substantial number of good people doing good works that also inhabit its pages. (B)

The Jaguar: T Jefferson Parker
The tale of Charlie Hood and the drug cartels in Mexico continue, and I fail to see how any of this can come to a good end. Charlie Hood is more evident in this book than last, but has clearly become a harder person in a harder world. Many good people have died around him, sometimes for little reason, and many bad people as well, because it was justice of a sort. I look forward to seeing where he takes this. Don’t read with a weak stomach. (B)

The Bone House: Brian Freeman
A stand alone (not that this guy is known for his great series). Of greatest interest to me waas that on my recent trip to Wisconsin, I saw an area that looked interesting to the northeast of Greenbay, and spent a day exploring the area, dead though it was in winter. The book took place there, in that little winter dead spit of land. The book itself was good, one of those innocent man that everybody thinks is guilty type stories. Maybe a bit strained at the end, but mostly OK. (B)

Raylan: Elmore Leonard
Art imitates art as Leonard writes a book to fuel a TV show that was based on an earlier book. This is trademark Leonard stuff, the lines between the good and the bad are so blurred they are barely there, and if they exist, it is only in that eventually, there is justice, of a sort. (B)

Stealing Time: Leslie Glass
One of the best April Woo novels to date, with not only a solid mystery to solve, but the manic efforts of Skinny Dragon Mother to cure April of her love of an Italian are too precious to pass up. (B+)

Loving TIme: Leslie Glass
April Woo again, early in the developing relationship with Mike Sanchez, as they search for answers about murder at the funny farm. (B)

In La La Land We Trust: Robert Campbell
Hardboiled stuff, another LA detective who takes cases to be the hero and not to make money, all while waiting for the movies to discover him. Another sucker for a beautiful woman. (B)

Panic: Jeff Abbot.
Just awful. I have never seen one novel populated by so many people that were TSTL. How they achieved adulthood without putting out an eye is beyond me. (C-)


message 2: by Melodie (new)

Melodie (melodieco) | 3626 comments I loved TAKEN, too. Have been wondering about RAYLAN. DH loves Justified, so thought I might get him to read it. I read IN LA LA LAND WE TRUST some years back and remember liking it.


message 3: by Barry (new)

Barry (barrypz) | 3053 comments I had always liked the Raylan character.Leonard's easygoing style lends itself to characters on the edge.


message 4: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14625 comments Barry: Your month reads like one of my "wish tbr lists"!
I have Raylan waiting for me on the library hold shelf! Looking forward to it! and I am almost finished listening to The Jaguar -it looks like the first March book of the month, and must agree, this wild ride with Charlie Hood is something else.


message 5: by Dan in AZ (new)

Dan in AZ | 2679 comments Panic: Jeff Abbot.
Just awful. I have never seen one novel populated by so many people that were TSTL. How they achieved adulthood without putting out an eye is beyond me. (C-)

Great review, Barry. I'm sure you saved at least a few of us from wasting our time on a stinker.


message 6: by Dawn (new)

Dawn | 1299 comments Great month for you! Heart of a Killer is waiting for me at the library and my daughter is hounding me to read The Hunger Games before the movie comes out. I loved Taken as well, and hmmmm...now that you mention it I wonder if I'm remembering the news story for Gideon's Corpse as well. And,should I be taking his medical condition at face value or is there more to that?


message 7: by Melodie (new)

Melodie (melodieco) | 3626 comments Dawn wrote: "Great month for you! Heart of a Killer is waiting for me at the library and my daughter is hounding me to read The Hunger Games before the movie comes out. I loved Taken as well, and hmmmm...now th..."

THE HUNGER GAMES is stellar! And I'm really looking forward to the movie!


message 8: by Barry (new)

Barry (barrypz) | 3053 comments Hunger Games will be the next group movie for the Northeast Chapter of M/T.


message 9: by Marcy (new)

Marcy | 865 comments I loved The Hunger Games books and wish I could join the Northeast Chapter for the movie. I stopped reading T Jefferson Parker a few years ago for no reason that I can remember. I think it's time to pick up where I left off. I thought his writing was top notch.


message 10: by Susie (new)

Susie Fevella (susieinks) | 1639 comments I'm on the library wish list for Taken, so I loved your review! I was also a little surprised by your Jance review and hope all the bodies don't scare me away ;)


message 11: by Ann (last edited Mar 01, 2012 11:34PM) (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14625 comments They are top notch!

Marcy wrote: "I loved The Hunger Games books and wish I could join the Northeast Chapter for the movie. I stopped reading T Jefferson Parker a few years ago for no reason that I can remember. I think it's time to pick up where I left off. I thought his writing was top notch-"


message 12: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8063 comments Barry wrote: "Hunger Games will be the next group movie for the Northeast Chapter of M/T."

Yes. I'd better get started reading it. My godchild gave me a copy for Christmas. I didn't even realize she paid attention to what I read, I was touched.


message 13: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8063 comments Road trip, Marcy!

I stopped reading TJ also. Not sure why, I think maybe the stories were so unrelentingly dark (MC's struggling with some tragedy) that I stopped kicking them to the top of the TBR. I do miss his stellar writing and storytelling, maybe now's time to jump back on the bandwagon.

Marcy wrote: "I loved The Hunger Games books and wish I could join the Northeast Chapter for the movie. I stopped reading T Jefferson Parker a few years ago for no reason that I can remember. I think it's tim..."


message 14: by Brakedrum (new)

Brakedrum | 1203 comments Barry wrote: "Taken: Robert Crais
A little reminder, one of my favorite lines in fiction came from Joe Pike: “War is what I do” and once again, he aids in the rescue of Cole, who is in just slightly over his h..."


Hubby loves Justified. I always record it for him. I do enjoy it, but as far as a cable show, I enjoy Southland a lot more.


message 15: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14625 comments Read the Charlie Hood books in order, Carol!
Yes this is really me saying that! ;)
Carol/Bonadie wrote: " I stopped reading TJ also. Not sure why, I think maybe the stories were so unrelentingly dark (MC's struggling with some tragedy) that I stopped kicking them to the top of the TBR. I do miss his stellar writing and storytelling, maybe now's time to jump back on the bandwagon.."


message 16: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8063 comments Then I know it must really matter, Ann. Not that I would do anything other than RIO!

Ann wrote: "Read the Charlie Hood books in order, Carol!
Yes this is really me saying that! ;)
Carol/Bonadie wrote: " I stopped reading TJ also. Not sure why, I think maybe the stories were so unrelentingly da..."



message 17: by Barry (new)

Barry (barrypz) | 3053 comments Yeah Carol, they barely make sense in order, I can't imagine what they would otherwise be like.


message 18: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14625 comments I gree Barry! The Charlie Hood books are very compelling and thought provoking though confusing. I didn't anticipate the depth of the story from the first book.
Barry wrote: "Yeah Carol, they barely make sense in order, I can't imagine what they would otherwise be like."


message 19: by Barry (new)

Barry (barrypz) | 3053 comments Yeah, that's what I meant, compelling and thought provoking.


message 20: by Carol/Bonadie (new)

Carol/Bonadie (bonadie) | 8063 comments Barry wrote: "Yeah, that's what I meant, compelling and thought provoking."

Now why don't I believe that?!?!?


message 21: by Cathy (new)

Cathy | 180 comments Marcy wrote: "I loved The Hunger Games books and wish I could join the Northeast Chapter for the movie. I stopped reading T Jefferson Parker a few years ago for no reason that I can remember. I think it's tim..."

I've seen so many people talking about The Hunger Games but I look at them like the Breaking Dawn series. I have ZERO interest....


message 22: by Melodie (new)

Melodie (melodieco) | 3626 comments Cathy wrote: "Marcy wrote: "I loved The Hunger Games books and wish I could join the Northeast Chapter for the movie. I stopped reading T Jefferson Parker a few years ago for no reason that I can remember. I ..."

An absolute world of difference between THE HUNGER GAMES and the TWILIGHT books. I have recommended THE HUNGER GAMES to so many people, and of the people who went ahead and read them after I recommended them not a single one has disliked them. I only recommended teh TWILIGHT books to a few people, ones I were pretty sure liked what are basically romances. THE HUNGER GAMES are not that....in any way! A guy I work with even read them and liked them and is looking forward to the movie, as he got his wife to read them, too.


message 23: by Sherry (new)

Sherry  | 3693 comments Melodie wrote: "Cathy wrote: "Marcy wrote: "I loved The Hunger Games books and wish I could join the Northeast Chapter for the movie. I stopped reading T Jefferson Parker a few years ago for no reason that I can..."

i'm excited that i'll be giving away copies of The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1) by Suzanne Collins on world book night. http://www.us.worldbooknight.org/


message 24: by Ann (last edited Mar 11, 2012 11:19AM) (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14625 comments Wow, Sherry!
I can see why you are excited about World Book Night. The applications for givers are closed. Too bad. The books they are giving away are a great list!


message 25: by Melodie (new)

Melodie (melodieco) | 3626 comments Ann wrote: "Wow, Sherry!
I can see why you are excited about Worlb Book Night. The applications for givers are closed. Too bad. The books they are giving away are a great list!"


What a great thing!! I'll have to find out how to get involved for next year!


message 26: by Ann (new)

Ann (annrumsey) | 14625 comments We will love to hear all about your experience with World Book Night, Sherry!


message 27: by Marcy (new)

Marcy | 865 comments This is fantastic!! I would love to be a part of it next time!


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