Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Posted by Michelle (Red Headed Book Child) at 6:05 PM
Monday, May 30, 2011
Sunday, May 29, 2011
I am pleased to welcome Cheryl one more time as Guest Reviewer. She was nice enough to read and review this new mystery author since I didn't think I would be able to squeeze it in before BEA. Thank you Cheryl!
Dead of Wynter by Spencer Seidel
From the back cover:
“Dolly, It’s Your Mother.”
Dolly. Jackie Ruth Wynter had called Alice that for years. Alice hated it. Almost as much as she hated her old life as Alice Wynter when she lived with her torn up family in the small town of Redding, Maine. Her twin brother Chris had been fading fast, transforming into a mirror image of their drunken, violent father. Now Jackie Ruth was telling her that Papa was dead and Chris was missing.
Alice resigns herself to return, helping her mother and the local police with the mystery surrounding the crime. But there are some family secrets her mother would sooner take to the grave than reveal. As the authorities come closer to solving the mystery of the men in her family, she begins to realize her past life as Alice Wynter is the missing part of the puzzle. But who is searching out the former Alice?
Wynter family secrets run deep, and they all have something to hide in the bone-chilling cold of Maine lake country. The mystery of her father’s murder and brother’s disappearance will capture your attention well past when the fire has gone out.
I always enjoy a mystery rife with family secrets. Seidel slowly and expertly reveals Alice’s remembering and discovery of those secrets. Though her twin brother Chris is missing and the prime suspect in her father’s death, Alice never quite believes him capable of murder. Seidel flips back and forth between the past and the present so the pieces eventually culminate into a dramatic conclusion.
Seidel delves into the emotional lives of Alice and her family. You understand their pain and difficulties. Members of the family, including Alice, all had deeply buried parts of their pasts that they never expected to uncover. This family drama is an important aspect of how the mystery unfolds.
The mystery kept me in suspense. As more and more of the family’s past was revealed, the mystery became more complex. Without giving anything away, the ending was both resolved and unresolved. This was the type of mystery that would have been less believable if everything had worked out perfectly. Instead, a purposeful and tenuous resolution enhanced the story. Overall, it was a fairly quick, though not light, read. I was caught up in the suspense and read it in only a few days. Seidel has one other novel that I will definitely read at some point.
Saturday, May 28, 2011
Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Sunday, May 22, 2011
Friday, May 20, 2011
Monday, May 16, 2011
Saturday, May 14, 2011
Friday, May 13, 2011
The Cleaner and The Silenced by Brett Battles.
I read a lot of thrillers and suspense novels, mostly because I like the action. I had not heard of Brett Battles before Michelle suggested them for review but I am glad I know him now. The two I read were the first and fourth in the series. I thoroughly enjoyed his books and especially his character, Jonathan Quinn. Quinn is a professional “cleaner,” which is “Nothing too violent, just disposing of bodies, doing a little cleanup if necessary.” He’s an independent contractor so he doesn’t work for just one person but accepts jobs from many. He travels the world, and understands many languages and cultures.
From the website:
The job seemed simple enough: investigating a suspicious case of arson. But when a dead body turns up where it doesn't belong—and Quinn's handlers at "the Office" turn strangely silent—he knows he's in over his head.
With only a handful of clues, Quinn scrambles for cover, struggling to find out why someone wants him dead . . . and if it's linked to a larger attempt to wipe out the Office.
His only hope may be Orlando, a woman from his past who's reluctant to help but who may hold the key to solving the case. Suddenly the two are prying into old crimes, crisscrossing continents, struggling to stay alive long enough to unbury the truth. But as the hunt intensifies, Quinn is stunned by what he uncovers: a chilling secret . . . and a brilliantly orchestrated conspiracy—with an almost unimaginable goal.
Quinn has a new client and an odd job: find and remove the remains of a body hidden twenty-five years ago inside a London building now scheduled for demolition.
But Quinn, his deadly and beautiful girlfriend Orlando, and their uniquely talented colleague Nate are being watched. Suddenly caught in the crossfire between two dangerous rivals who demand the remains, Quinn and his team must learn who the dead man was and why he's still so important. Because a plot stretching from London to Hong Kong to the former Soviet Union is rapidly unraveling. And Quinn hasn't just been hired to tie up loose ends—he is one.
The books are fast-paced and action-filled, just like a thriller should be. Battles creates great characters with Quinn and his companions, Nate and Orlando. What I like best is that the books center around a character with a unique profession. Though he hints at the possibility of a secret government entity, that has little to do with the story. Instead, he creates a new group of spies with gadgets, high intelligence, and quick wits to solve the conspiratorial situations in which they enmesh themselves.
Battles’ books are quick reads, intricate and unique, with lots of twists and turns along the way. Once I picked them up I did not want to put them down and I read both books within about a week. I missed a few developments by not reading the second and third books, but because he is a good mystery writer it did not take away from the story. I plan to go back and read those two and to read more of his books as he writes them. Brett Battles has made it to my list of favorite thriller writers.
Posted by Michelle (Red Headed Book Child) at 11:28 AM
Great. I lost a post. Thanks Blogger.
Posted by Michelle (Red Headed Book Child) at 10:04 AM
Sunday, May 8, 2011
Posted by Michelle (Red Headed Book Child) at 6:47 AM
Saturday, May 7, 2011
Fiona Walsh thought her family’s secrets would follow her to her grave, but when her diary is found by a young postman, Niall, the truth about her untimely demise—and that of her sister and aunt—begins to see the light of day. It’s the most tragic love story he’s ever heard.
Niall soon becomes enveloped by the mystery surrounding Jim—an itinerant storyteller who traveled through Ireland enrapturing audiences and wooing women with his macabre mythic sagas—though a trail of murder followed him wherever he went. The Walsh sisters, fiercely loyal to each other, were not immune to “darling” Jim’s powers of seduction, but found themselves in harm’s way when they began to uncover his treacherous past. Niall must now continue his dangerous hunt for the truth—and for the vanished third sister—while there’s still time.
And in the woods, the wolves from Jim’s stories begin to gather.