Monday, March 22, 2010

Guest Review #1: Last Snow and First Daughter by Eric Van Lustbader

Title: Last Snow
Author: Eric Van Lustbader
Publisher: Forge
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Format: Hardcover
ISBN: 978-0-7653-2515-0
Price/Pages: $25.99/413
Release Date: February 2010

Title: First Daughter
Publisher: Forge
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Format: Mass Market paperback
ISBN: 978-0-7653-6142-4
Price/Pages: $9.99/454
Release Date: Mass Market edition 9/09

Red Headed Book Child's Two Cents:

These books came my way via a lovely email from the publisher. I was tickled at the thought of being asked to review these books. I had heard of Eric Van Lustbader being a mystery fan and having worked in bookstores for so long. He was picked by the estate of Robert Ludlum's to continue to write the Jason Bourne series. Though I have not read these books, I am a HUGE fan of the movies.
So I jumped at the chance to take a peek at other books by this author. First Daughter and Last Snow are the first two books in a developing new series featuring the character of Jack McClure, a ATF agent and special advisor to the President.

When I started them I felt they read like an episode of "24", one of my favorite TV shows ever! Lots of politics, intrigue, betrayal and adventure.

Thank you to Anne of Forge Publishing for sending us these books to read.

I thought these would be the perfect books to pass on to my husband to read and review. So lo' and behold, here we are. Sean, my husband, ate these books up in a matter of days. Those lovely uninterrupted lunch breaks, I tell ya'.

So here to tell you all about Last Snow and First Daughter, I give you The Husband.

Sean says:
I greatly enjoyed both books, and would recommend for anyone who likes the political thriller/espionage genre, being action-packed and full of twists.
Both books featured ATF agent, Jack McClure. Jack, having lost his only daughter, is now trusted to take care of the President's daughter. He is loyal, intuitive and rough around the edges.
First Daughter was like a book version of "24" crossed with "Law and Order SVU; it moved quickly, drew heavily on topical current events, and questioned some social and political constructs often taken for granted. Set in D.C., all of the characters had their own flaws, and varying levels of grasping them, to the point it's almost difficult to discern who is the protagonist until a few chapters in. The POTUS (Pres. of the US) is in a tight spot, and calls on his trusted friend, Jack, to help; though his list of "friends" is highly suspect, and heavily corrupted. Throw in a fringe group or two, add some i-pod references, and you've got a great read.
Last Snow takes place almost immediately after the conclusion of the first book, except the main characters are relocated to Russia/ Ukraine, with the POTUS in need of his most trusted man, Jack McClure. Once again Jack is the only one with enough info to help, without having enough info to be a liability. This takes Jack on a wild ride, finding many twists and turns. My only gripe about this book are the leaps in chronological order and, being set in Russia/ Ukraine, many of the names are similar, so it takes a little vigilance to catch the nuances. However, I did find it to be a very fun read.

This may be a new series for Eric Van Lustbader. If so, it is one that I look forward to reading. Check out his website here.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my first review.



Jenny said...

These sound great... thanks for reviewing them! I like these kind of books, and I always look out for them for my mom too because she's really into this genre.

Julie@My5monkeys said...

oh going to have these to reading pile.

Tales of Whimsy said...

Cool review :)

Lisa said...

Thanks for the reviews, Sean. The books do sound like episodes from "24," right down to the protagonists first name!

Stacy at The Novel Life said...

Thanks for the awesome review!!! I've read something else by him many years ago, but for the life of me I cannot remember what! These books will be a perfect way to re-acquaint myself with this author. Hope you'll be back around doing some guest posting!!!