Archive | January 2008

Marshwrack

Marshwrack
by Mark Raney
Reviewed by Gary for Quality Book Reviews.

A great story of a fisherman’s life along with his journey from his home in North Carolina to Georgia.

The author has penned a great fisherman’s story with engaging and believable characters.  The story is entertaining and well written, and the author has a unique way of drawing you into the story.  I am looking forward to many more stories by this author.

Smile for me, I’m crying

Smile for me, I’m crying
by Mark Raney
Reviewed by Gary for Quality Book Reviews

Description:

Keith Englund, mature and focused, heads full force into a relationship with Deborah. He soon discovers that there is much more to Deborah than he can possibly understand. He realizes the dangers of their relationship, yet he is drawn to her and to her two small children. Mark Raney, author of sea adventure and commercial fishing, breaks away from his tales of the sea and writes a romantic and intriguing story.

Review:

A story with strong believable characters.  This one is more for the ladies in my opinion as it is a romance.   A good story with a good plot just not my kind of read.

The story is well written and the author has done a great job and would highly recommend this to the female gender and some males may also like this one as well.

The 13th Demon: Altar of the Spiral Eye


The 13th Demon: Altar of the Spiral Eye
by:  Bruce Hennigan

iUniverse (2006)
ISBN 9780595403967

Looking for a page turner that you will not be able to put down, here it is.  Once you begin this one make sure you have time to finish or be prepared to be late to school, work, or where ever you may need to be.  This is a gripping page turner page after page from beginning to end.

The story begins as a man comes crawling up the beach and finds his way to a woman’s home needing help.  He has been severely beaten and left to die by the ocean.  The man slips into a coma to awaken without any memory later in the hospital.  Upon being discharged from the hospital he has no recollection or any memory of who he is and has no where to go, he accepts a job as a caretaker for a physician and falls for his daughter April.

On the eve of their engagement, Jonathan returns to the condo to find the doctor almost dead at the hands of a madman and no sign of his fiancée.  Finding her alive and unharmed, Jonathan attempts to escape the madman who had done such violence, only to have them both caught and April killed before Jonathan is able to kill the man, who is actually a demon.  As April lay dying in his arms, she told Jonathan that the demon had said that he had to kill Jonathan before he destroyed all of his kind.  With her last breath, she begs Jonathan to fight the evil. 

And so the quest begins, but where does one look to find the demons and to prevent evil?

An excellent entertaining read that demands to be finished once the first page has been read.  An astounding 5 stars!

Beginner’s Greek

 

Beginner’s Greek
by:  James Collins

Holly and Peter meet on a flight from New York to Los Angeles and are immediately attracted to one another.  At some inner level, they each know they met their life mate.   This is an amusing chick lit romance in which one thing leads to another.  Peter loses her number and years later Holly marries Peter’s best friend, will Holly and Peter ever realize they belong together or is it too late. 

You will love the more surprising twists and turns in the lives of the various characters in this romance.  You will be amazed at the surprises that will pop up throughout and some unexpected happenings you will never see coming your way.

You will want to pick up a copy of “Beginner’s Greek” as this is an amusing romantic read and demands to be read.  No secrets or story lines revealed in this review, you will want to enjoy this one and discuss with your friends.  A very entertaining read.  And written by a male, so romance still can thrive where least expected from the male’s perspective.

Creation In Death

Creation In Death
by:  J.D. Robb

Another great hit in the”In Death” series which is a futuristic setting taking place in 2060.

 I am a great fan of Nora Roberts writing as J.D. Robb and she never disappoints, I highly recommend this entire series.  J.D. Robb is a master of her genre and all her stories are entertaining and must reads.

Five Stars to the “In Death” series.

The Society of S

The Society of S
Susan Hubbard

 A wonderful coming of age tale of a girl’s struggles with the end of the innocence while dealing with adolescence and being a mixed breed offspring (of vampire and of mortal).  Her father is a vampire and her mother a mortal, now Ari must decide her fate, does she wish to follow her father and become a vampire or does she wish to be mortal?  Ari sets out to find her mother and to make her decision, the majority of the tale is Ari’s search for her mother.  If you enjoy vampire tales you will enjoy The Society of S, others may find this an enjoyable read while others will put this one away after a few chapters. 

The Woods

The Woods
by: Harlan Coben
ISBN: 0525950125

Story of four teens who attend summer camp take off into the woods one evening to never return.  Two are discovered dead, two have vanished and presumed dead.  Were all four of the teens victims of the serial killer?  As the story plays out, the two discovered dead teens are placed to rest and funeral services held, but what of the other two missing teens, where are their bodies?  Are they really dead or hiding for their lives?

Harlan Coben has  penned a whopper of an action packed thriller which is evident by the strong story line.  There are many twists and the story tends to delve into other avenues that may at times take you away from the main theme, so pay close attention for the astounding end to this one.  Not to be missed, an overall excellent read.

Ricochet

Ricochet
by Sandra Brown

Homicide detective Duncan Hatcher is a gung-ho, and sometimes sort of a rogue cop who pushes all the issues to the fullest envelope content. When he sees outlandish criminal Robert Savich released by Judge Cato Laird when Hatcher knew there was enough evidence on this man to put him away for a long time, he becomes obsessed at finding more evidence to keep Savich off the streets. DeeDee Bowen is Hatcher’s partner. She is very gung-ho but not to the extent of Hatcher. She has to attempt to calm Hatcher down when he allows his anger to get into his official police work. The situation intensifies when several connected with Savich’s past and present life turn up missing or dead. Everyone knows that Savich is a bad criminal capable of anything, but since Judge Laird had released him the police had to dig deeper to find solid evidence on Savich. Savich was extremely careful not to leave a trail of evidence that would lead to him for any of the crimes he is suspected of committing. When the police delve into these older disappearances Judge Laird seems to be involved somehow in most of them. One night Judge Laird’s house was broken into and his lovely wife, Elise, shot and killed the man in the judge’s study. A strange trail of evidence was found in the house. Elise had gone downstairs from their bedroom to get some milk, as she did many nights due to “sleeplessness!” She claims she heard a noise as she moved around the downstairs area. She grabbed a hidden gun and claimed that the burglar shot at her, missed her, and she shot and killed him. Hatcher was one of the many law authorities that arrived but Hatcher was having a hard time taking his eyes and mind off of the so gorgeous Elise Laird, making his concentration on the actual case very hard. But between he, DeeDee, and all the other law enforcement agency people that were to work on this high profile case, things return to a huge workload for all involved. Hatcher was fine until he thought or saw Elise Laird. He was caught on her. The authorities were finding too many pieces of evidence, some possibly just coincidence, linking Judge Laird to Savich. This made Hatcher and Bowen delve into old mysterious murder cases that seemed to connect to the judge. Duncan and DeeDee made a great team seemingly to know what is on the others mind while investigating. DeeDee only had qualms regarding Hatcher’s actions some times. When Elise goes missing Hatcher goes even more radical than before. He has to find this woman for who he has so many feelings. At this point I don’t want to ruin any of the many plots and twists and turns in Ricochet. Sandra Brown has come through with another top story. The surprises go to the very end. The reader can follow the story easily the way the author has written it. I have always enjoyed her books especially the crime stories. Her characters are real and their actions place you in the midst of every crime scene and interrogation.  Sandra Brown has developed an ingeneous plot that delivers with constant surprises throughout the story.  This is a must read.

James Patterson and the Women’s Murder Club

The tv series of the Women’s Murder Club is great, I would highly recommend watching this new series it is wonderful and packed with humor, drama, and loads of action. The show airs on Friday nights on abc at 900 pm eastern standard time.

A serial killer is stalking and murdering newlyweds on their honeymoon. San Francisco Homicide inspector Lindsay Boxer takes the case and along the way meets three other women—a lawyer, a reporter, and the city medical examiner. Joining forces to solve this gruesome crime, the Women’s Murder Club is born.

2nd Chance

The Women’s Murder Club is back! A brutal madman sprays bullets into a crowd of children leaving a San Francisco church. Miraculously-or was it intentionally?-only one person dies. Then an elderly black woman is hung. Police homicide inspector Lindsay Boxer senses a connection and together with medical examiner Claire, assistant D. A. Jill, and Chronicle reporter Cindy, finds a link that sends a chill through the entire nation. This killer’s motives are unspeakable.

3rd Degree

Lindsay Boxer and friends must track down a deadly terror group who begins their killing spree by blowing up an expensive townhouse—with the family still inside. In the meantime, a member of the club may be in some trouble of her own and Lindsay could be too late to save her.

4th of July

After an arrest goes awry, Lindsay finds herself facing police brutality charges. But taking time off to cool down proves harder then she thought. As she heads out of town, Lindsay finds herself in the middle of a killing spree, and must locate the killers before they find her. Back in San Francisco, the Women’s Murder Club helps to get Lindsay through the trial…but will she be found innocent?

5th Horseman

Patients at San Francisco medical Center are mysteriously dying hours before they are to be released with a clean bill of health. Lindsay and the rest of the Women’s Murder Club begin their own investigation into the hospital, but the list of suspects proves to be as long as the list of patients.

6th Target

Someone opens fire on unsuspecting pedestrians and one of the Women’s Murder Club is caught in the middle. As she struggles for her life, the others must work fast to track down the madman. In another part of the city, somebody is targeting children and their nannies. As the kidnappers await their ransom, Lindsay and company are faced with finding the mastermind before more children are harmed.

7th Heaven

Their 7th case will be 2008’s 7th Heaven.

THE CHARACTERS PROFILES:

LINDSAY BOXER
The Detective

Meet Lindsay Boxer, a homicide detective for the San Francisco Police Department. Lindsay is 5’10” tall. She was a sociology major and graduated from San Francisco State (to which she transferred from Berkeley when she found out that her mother had breast cancer). She loves beer and butterscotch praline ice cream. She has a border collie named Martha. She enjoys running, loves to read travel books and mysteries and her secret hobby is Tai Chi.

Lindsay is divorced, has a younger sister named Cat and a father named Marty, who was also a member of the SFPD. Marty left Lindsay’s mother when Lindsay was 13.

One thing that very few people know about Lindsay is that she has a tattoo of a one-inch gecko on her left buttock.

CINDY THOMAS
The ReporterMeet Cindy Thomas, pretty, blonde and city cool. She’s an up and coming reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle. Cindy is a graduate of the University of Michigan where she was a sociology major. She loves yoga, jazz music and, like her friend Lindsay Boxer, loves to read travel books and mysteries, she’s even a member of a book club. She also has a tattoo, but unlike Lindsay, she has two small G-clefs on her shoulder.
CLAIRE WASHBURN
The Medical Examiner

Meet Claire Washburn, Claire is black and heavyset; she always jokes, “I’m in shape…round’s a shape.” Claire is wise, confident, kind and the Chief Medical Examiner for San Francisco. She is married to Edmund, a kettle drum-player in the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra. Claire and Edmund have two teenage sons. Her tattoo: an outline of a butterfly just below her waist. She also goes by the nickname “Butterfly” and has it embroidered on her lab coat at work.

YUKI CASTELLANO
The Attorney

Yuki Castellano is an ambitious, young San Francisco district attorney who is passionate, brilliant, given to speaking at 90 miles per hour, and sometimes wears a magenta red streak in her glossy, black, shoulder-length hair. Her parents met at a graduate school mixer for foreign students and married within three weeks. Her mother is Japanese and her father Italian-American. Yuki’s favorite drink, when out with the other members of the Club, is a Germain-Robin sidecar.

ABOUT JAMES PATTERSON:

James Patterson, the subject of a recent Time magazine feature called, “The Man Who Can’t Miss,” is

  • The bestselling author of the past year, bar none, with more than 12 million books sold in North America alone. In total, James’s books have sold an estimated 130 million copies worldwide.
  • <!–

  • A champion of reading and the founder of the $500,000 PageTurner awards that seek to spread the excitement and joy of books and reading in the United States. (Visit www.pattersonpageturner.org for more details.)
  • –>

  • The creator of the #1 new detective series of the past dozen years, featuring Alex Cross and including the Hollywood-adapted Along Came a Spider and Kiss the Girls, starring Morgan Freeman.
  • The creator of the #1 new detective series of the past 5 years, featuring Lindsay Boxer and the other members of the Women’s Murder Club. The most recent bestseller in that series is the record-breaking The 5th Horseman.
  • The first author to have #1 new titles simultaneously on New York Times adult and children’s lists. James’s first foray into kid-accessible fiction, the critically acclaimed Maximum Ride series, debuted on the list at #1 and remained there for 12 straight weeks. The series has so far been on the New York Times bestsellers lists for more than 54 weeks, proving that kids love pageturners, too!
  • One of a handful of authors whose sales have been growing over the past two years, even as bestselling fiction sales have been sluggish.
  • The author of novels–from The Thomas Berryman Number (1976) to Honeymoon (2005)–that have won awards including the Edgar, the BCA Mystery Guild’s Thriller of the Year, and the International Thriller of the Year award.
  • One of Forbes magazine’s top 100 celebrities.
  • The creator of the books behind six movies on the Hollywood fast-track, including the young adult series Maximum Ride, an adaptation of the celebrated illustrated children’s book, santaKid, the thrillers Honeymoon and Lifeguard, the Alex Cross series, and a stunning horror novel to be published later on in ’07, You’ve Been Warned. His Women’s Murder Club series has also been green-lighted as a pilot for ABC television, and could be on the air as soon as fall, 2007.

<!– In 2005 alone James Patterson had five consecutive #1 New York Times bestselling hardcover novels – a record held by no other author. His books have earned more than 150 straight weeks on the USA Today 150 list of overall top-selling books in all categories and formats-longer than Tom Clancy, Stephen King, Danielle Steel, or John Grisham-and in 2004 and 2005 Forbes magazine ranked him on its Top 100 Celebrities lists. With a body of work grossing over 1.5 billion dollars in worldwide sales and twelve consecutive #1 New York Times bestsellers, James Patterson is America’s best loved storyteller.James Patterson’s success is unique in his ability to master different genres. His Alex Cross series (eleven books, from Kiss the Girls to Mary, Mary – November ’05) is the top selling new U.S. detective series in the last 20 years with over 35 million copies sold. The next best selling detective series over the last ten years also belongs to Patterson…The Women’s Murder Club Maximum Ride (1st to Die, 2nd Chance, 3rd Degree, 4th of July), with over 14 million copies sold.

But even beyond the two detective series, his last seventeen consecutive novels have been #1 New York Times best-sellers.

In 2004, he created his first children’s story, santaKid, which was the colorful basis of the celebrated Saks Fifth Avenue holiday window display in 2004 and, in 2005, is the theme for Australia’s famed Myer department store holiday windows. It’s being developed into a feature Hollywood movie by New Line Cinema.

Patterson also captured the minds of young and old readers alike in 2005 by delving into the world of flight and fantasy with his first-ever series for teens, Maximum Ride. Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestsellers list on May 1, 2005 and remained in that spot for 12 weeks. And with his 2005 debut of Lifeguard at #1 on the New York Times list, Patterson broke another record of three hardcover novels on two New York Times bestsellers lists simultaneously – Fiction Hardcover and Children’s Chapter Books.

Hollywood began to recognize the power of James Patterson’s stories after the success of Paramount’s two Alex Cross movies (Kiss the Girls and Along Came a Spider) starring Morgan Freeman. At the moment, Honeymoon, Lifeguard, and Maximum Ride are also in development by Hollywood film studios.

Patterson was awarded the 2004 Readers’ Digest Readers’ Choice Award and is the recent winner of the BCA Mystery Guild’s Thriller of the Year Award (2003). He was also awarded the Edgar Award for Best First Mystery by the Mystery Writers of America, and Honeymoon was named International Thriller of the Year for 2005.

A major public advocate of literacy programs, Patterson is passionate about spreading the joy of reading. He devotes time to giving free public lectures at schools, bookstores, and for an array of organizations. He has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for reading and education and has personally pledged millions to the cause.

In June 2005, Patterson announced his latest charitable project, the James Patterson PageTurner Award, which are cash prizes totaling more than $100,000 awarded to individuals, schools, and other groups/organizations who are devoted to getting people excited about books and reading. More information about the Patterson PageTurner Award can be found at www.pattersonpageturner.org.

James Patterson, a native of Newburgh, New York, graduated summa cum laude from Manhattan College and summa cum laude from The Graduate School at Vanderbilt University. Not surprisingly, both degrees were in English. He now resides in Palm Beach, Florida, with his wife and their young son.

// –>

The tv series of the Women’s Murder Club is great, I would highly recommend watching this new series it is wonderful and packed with humor, drama, and loads of action. The show airs on Friday nights on abc at 900 pm eastern standard time.

5th Horseman – Discussion Guide

  1. Lyndsey has mixed feelings about her promotion within the San Francisco Police Department. Have you or anybody you’ve known ever received a promotion that made a job less enjoyable than it used to be? If so, why do you think that is?

 

  1. The Women’s Murder Club consists of a cop, a coroner, a reporter, and a lawyer. Which of these jobs do you think would be the hardest on a daily basis? Which of these do you think would be the most rewarding? If you aren’t one yourself already, which do you think you’d most enjoy?

 

  1. Lyndsey’s a working woman, but work is not everything to her. She has her boyfriend, Joe, and, of course, her dog, Sweet Martha. Of these two, who would you say is more important to Lyndsey?

 

  1. Hospitals play a big role in The 5th Horseman. A lot of people are afraid of hospitals, but there are, of course, good experiences there, along with the sickness, death, and tragedy that take place inside them as well. What kinds of feelings do you have when you go into a hospital?

 

  1. In the background of the investigation is the fate of the hospital in which the murders have taken place. To what extent do you think big institutions like hospitals ought to be held accountable for the actions of any of their hundreds of employees or visitors?

 

  1. There are a number of big public institutions portrayed in The 5th Horseman, including the court system, the police department, and the hospital system. Which of these do you consider to be in the best shape these days? Which, if any, do you consider seriously off track?

 

  1. If the Women’s Murder Club were a television show or a movie, which actresses would you like to see playing each of the four members?

 

  1. If the Women’s Murder Club had a charter—a guiding statement of principles—what do you think it would say? What would it stress? Loyalty? Bravery? Keeping it real?

 

  1. Dr. Garza is clearly a little full of himself but, then again, he is a very successful doctor who has worked very hard to get to where he is and has doubtless helped a lot of sick and injured people. Do you think doctors and others who dedicate themselves to helping save lives should be cut a little slack when it comes to their social skills?

 

  1. Which of the members of the Women’s Murder Club do you most identify with? If you’re in a reading group, which of your fellow members have personalities that most resemble Cindy? Claire? Yuki? Lyndsey?

 

  1. If you were invited to a night out with the Women’s Murder Club at Susie’s, what songs might you choose on the jukebox, assuming the jukebox had any song you wanted?

 

 

 

 

Either with a reading group or on your own, please feel to share answers with the author at http://www.jamespatterson.com.

ABOUT THE HARRY POTTER BOOKS (THE SERIES)

ABOUT THE HARRY POTTER BOOKS (THE SERIES)

 

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
Scholastic Books
320 Pages

Harry Potter has never been the star of a Quidditch team, scoring points while riding a broom far above the ground. He knows no spells, has never helped to hatch a dragon, and has never worn a cloak of invisibility.

All he knows is a miserable life with the Dursleys, his horrible aunt and uncle, and their abominable son, Dudley — a great big swollen spoiled bully. Harry’s room is a closet at the foot of the stairs, and he hasn’t had a birthday party in eleven years.

But all that is about to change when a mysterious letter arrives by owl messenger: a letter with an invitation to an incredible place that Harry — and anyone who reads about him — will find unforgettable.

For it’s there that he finds not only friends, aerial sports, and magic in everything from classes to meals, but a great destiny that’s been waiting for him… if Harry can survive the encounter.

 

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Scholastic Books
352 Pages

The Dursleys were so mean and hideous that summer that all Harry Potter wanted was to get back to the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. But just as he’s packing his bags, Harry receives a warning from a strange, impish creature named Dobby who says that if Harry Potter returns to Hogwarts, disaster will strike. And strike it does. For in Harry’s second year at Hogwarts, fresh torments and horrors arise, including an outrageously stuck-up new professor, Gilderoy Lockhart, a spirit named Moaning Myrtle who haunts the girls’ bathroom, and the unwanted attentions of Ron Weasley’s younger sister, Ginny. But each of these seem minor annoyances when the real trouble begins, and someone — or something — starts turning Hogwarts students to stone. Could it be Draco Malfoy, a more poisonous rival than ever? Could it possibly be Hagrid, whose mysterious past is finally told? Or could it be the one everyone at Hogwarts most suspects… Harry Potter himself!

 

Harry Potter and Prisoner of Azkaban
Scholastic Books
448 Pages

For twelve long years, the dread fortress of Azkaban held an infamous prisoner named Sirius Black. Convicted of killing 13 people with a single curse, he was said to be the heir apparent to the Dark Lord, Voldemort. Now he has escaped, leaving only two clues as to where he might be headed: Harry Potter’s defeat of You-Know-Who was Black’s downfall as well. And the Azkaban guards heard Black muttering in his sleep, “He’s at Hogwarts… he’s at Hogwarts.” Harry Potter isn’t safe, not even within the walls of his magical school, surrounded by his friends. Because on top of it all, there may well be a traitor in their midst.

 

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Scholastic Books
752 Pages

It’s the pivotal fourth novel in the seven-part tale of Harry Potter’s training as a wizard and his coming of age. Harry wants to get away from the pernicious Dursleys and go to the International Quidditch Cup with Hermione, Ron, and the Weasleys. He wants to dream about Cho Chang, his crush (and maybe do more than dream). He wants to find out about the mysterious event that’s supposed to take place at Hogwarts this year, an event involving two other rival schools of magic, and a competition that hasn’t happened for a hundred years. He wants to be a normal, fourteen-year-old wizard. Unfortunately for Harry Potter, he’s not normal — even by wizarding standards.

And in his case, different can be deadly.

 

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Scholastic Books
870 Pages

I say to you all, once again–in the light of Lord Voldemort’s return, we are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided. Lord Voldemort’s gift for spreading discord and enmity is very great. We can fight it only by showing an equally strong bond of friendship and trust.

So spoke Albus Dumbledore at the end of Harry Potter’s fourth year at Hogwarts. But as Harry enters his fifth year at wizard school, it seems those bonds have never been more sorely tested. Lord Voldemort’s rise has opened a rift in the wizarding world between those who believe the truth about his return, and those who prefer to believe it’s all madness and lies–just more trouble from Harry Potter.

Add to this a host of other worries for Harry…

  • A Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher with a personality like poisoned honey
  • A venomous, disgruntled house-elf
  • Ron as keeper of the Gryffindor Quidditch team
  • And of course, what every student dreads: end-of-term Ordinary Wizarding Level exams

…and you’d know what Harry faces during the day. But at night it’s even worse, because then he dreams of a single door in a silent corridor. And this door is somehow more terrifying than every other nightmare combined.

In the richest installment yet of J. K. Rowling’s seven-part story, Harry Potter confronts the unreliability of the very government of the magical world, and the impotence of the authorities at Hogwarts.

Despite this (or perhaps because of it) Harry finds depth and strength in his friends, beyond what even he knew; boundless loyalty and unbearable sacrifice.

Though thick runs the plot (as well as the spine), readers will race through these pages, and leave Hogwarts, like Harry, wishing only for the next train back.

 

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Scholastic Books
652 Pages

 

 

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Arthur A. Levine Books
759 Pages