Monday, March 31, 2014

Entangled - Casey Odell

Entangled is part of the Cursed Magic Series. This is is a prequel that should be read between book two and book three in the series. This is more of a novella than a full length novel.

The Cursed Magic Series has provided glimpses of Claire and Farron's past, but this novella gives more depth to the two characters. Claire's first real romance is covered in a way that helps explain her feelings about relationships. Farron's job as the King's assassin is covered in more detail, and brings us to the point where he discovers Lianna and her power awakens. This book is good background for a very interesting fantasy series. Very highly recommended.

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Storm Front - John Sandford

Storm Front is a Virgil Flowers novel. Another thriller, courtesy of the Minnesota BCA.

Virgil Flowers is an investigator for the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. When someone shows up in Minnesota with a stolen relic from Israel, Virgil gets the call. Turns out, this isn't a simple relic. This is a relic with terrorists, treasure hunters, Israeli government agents, and plain old crooks after it. Virgil would rather keep working on his ongoing case, but when people start getting shot, it's time to find the relic. The usual crew of Minnesota crime fighters give Virgil an assist, and of course there have to be women in the mix when Virgil is involved. Very highly recommended.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Awakened - Casey Odell

Awakened is the second novel in the Cursed Magic Series. Unfortunately, book three isn't available yet. Curses!

Claire and Farron travel from the Haven in their quest to find Claire's mother and discover more about her power. The adventure continues when Claire meets others of her kind. She's not the only one in which the world's magic has been hidden. Claire is working to control her magic, now that it's been awakened. Farron is working to protect Claire from the many people who want to possess her. More suspense, danger, and romance. Very highly recommended.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Stolen Prey - John Sandford

Stolen Prey is the 22nd novel in the Prey Series featuring Lucas Davenport. I could be off by one, but it's close. You don't have to read them in order, but I highly recommend it. You will not regret it.

Lucas Davenport is still sort of a freelancer in the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. When the BCA superintendent calls, because an entire family has been slaughtered, Lucas finds a murder scene that defies description. A killing team is loose in the Twin Cities area, and stopping them before they kill again is paramount. Why this is happening is a puzzle just as compelling. This is another gripping thriller with the familiar cast of characters. The story incorporates some humor, lots of suspense, and brutal murder into a book that is hard to put down. Very highly recommended.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Cursed - Casey Odell

Cursed is the first novel in the Cursed Magic series. This book is free for the kindle. This is an intriguing fantasy story. I've already paid for the second book.

Claire Tanith's Mom owns the Blazing Stallion tavern in the small town of Stockton. Claire has been helping with the tavern since she was small. When Stockton is attacked by centaurs, and the town's people are forced to flee or die, Claire and her mother separate. Claire is rescue by elves, but rescued for a price. Claire appears to have some magic that the elves want. Now Claire and her two elf companions are on a quest to try and bring magic back to the world. This is a great story. The suspense keeps building and the danger keeps growing, while Claire awakens to the world outside of Stockton and to her own mysterious powers. Very highly recommended.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Damascus Countdown - Joel C. Rosenberg

Damascus Countdown is the third and final book in Rosenberg's Twelfth Imam series. You have to read them in order. This is a great conclusion. This series would make great movies, but you'll never see Hollywood touch this material.

CIA agent David Shirazi is still doing his best to keep the middle east from erupting, but it's too little too late. David's new challenge is to stop the twelfth imam from launching a nuclear attack on Israel that will plunge the whole world into war. This story has more suspense and action than anything I've read since my last Rosenberg book. Very highly recommended.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Green Lake - S.K. Epperson

Green Lake is free for the kindle. This is a murder mystery with a cast of characters that will make you glad there is no real Green Lake.

Madeleine Heron is staying at a cabin in Green Lake because she needs a place to recover from her husband's suicide. She was forced to sell her house and almost everything in it because her husband had cashed in his insurance. Madeleine's sister suggested she spend the summer at her cabin, and Madeleine agreed. Thus begins a tale of strange characers and stranger events. Missing children, bullies, vandals, murder, and mahem are just a few of Madeleine's adventures. And then there's the man she could be falling in love with. A strange and quirky tale, with an ending just as bizaar as the rest of the story. Very highly recommended.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Everflame - Dylan Peters

Everflame is free for the kindle. This is a fantasy novel with some interesting twists. There are two other books in the Everflame trilogy

The Everflame burns eternal in the kingdom of the bears as a symbol of their spirit. Evercloud is a human who was rescued from wolves and raised by bears. Evercloud is the only human to ever live with the bears. He's the adopted son of the bear king Eveneye. When it appears the great tyrant has returned to the land, and there are rumors of the four ancients, Evercloud is part of the team sent to find the ancients. Evil and good are battling once again. The ancients may be the bears' only hope against the great tyrant, the only hope for all creatures. This is a great story. There's plenty of adventure and lots of marvelous creatures. Very highly recommended.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Insurgent - Veronica Roth

Insurgent is the second novel in the Divergent series. You have to read the first book Divergent before taking on the second. You'll be totally lost otherwise.

Tris and the rest of the characters who are still alive, continue their efforts to survive in a world that's been torn apart by the rift between factions. I really like the first book in the series, in spite of the contrived factions. This book is too little action and too much introspection. I finished it, and I'll probably read the third book in the series, but instead of this book compelling me to read, I found myself skimming in order to get past the parts that dragged. Recommended.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Deadly Stillwater - Roger Stelljes

Deadly Stillwater is the second novel in the McRyan Mystery series. This book is free for the kindle.

When Shannon Hisle is kidnapped in broad daylight in the middle of St. Paul, the police are quick to respond. Shannon is the daughter of St. Paul’s most famous attorney. Then Carrie Flanagan is kidnapped the next day and things go into overdrive. Carrie is the daughter of the St. Paul chief of police. Mac McRyan isn't the oldest detective on the force, but he's the smartest. Mac and his boys are on the case and working overtime. Why were the girls taken, and why these two? There's suspense, danger, and plenty of twists in this story. Very highly recommended.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Heller's Girlfriend - JD Nixon

Heller's Girlfriend is the third novel in the Heller series. This book is another danger filled romp through the world of private security.

Tilly Chalmers is back with more dangerous assignments and tangled relationships. She's not thrilled with being security at a swinger's orgy, or guarding an actress who brings new meaning to the word bitch. Then there's Tilly's personal life, which is even more complicated than her work assignments. A great book. Read 'em in order. Very highly recommended.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Deadly Aim - Patricia H. Rushford

Deadly Aim is the first novel in the Angel Delaney Mystery series. This book is free for the kindle. What if your first shooting as a police officer was a 12 year old kid with a toy gun?

Angel Delaney is not a rookie cop. She's been on the Sunset Cove police force for a little over a year, but Angel had been on the force in Bay City Florida for three years before moving back to Oregon. When Angel and her partner Eric respond to an early morning drug store robbery, Angel is confronted by a gang member with a gun. What follows is a tragedy, and something Angel will have to live with, but there's more going on here than a simple officer shooting. As the bodies start to pile up Angel finds herself a target. A target for the media, political activists, and a killer. This is a great story. There is plenty of suspense, danger, some interesting twists, and little romance too. Very highly recommended.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Night Broken - Patricia Briggs

Night Broken is the eighth novel in the Mercy Thompson series. How do you fight a volcano god?

Mercy has trouble on the domestic front when Adam's ex-wife Christy moves home for protection from a stalker. Sharing your home with your husband's ex-wife is bad enough, but the pack seems to sympathize with Christy. Then the stalker turns out to be more than human. Adding to Mercy's problems, a grey lord wants the walking stick back. The problem is Mercy gave it to Coyote for safe keeping. It's not clear how Mercy's going to get it back. It's another danger filled adventure for Mercy and the Columbia Basin werewolf pack. Very highly recommended.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Fair Game - Patricia Briggs

Fair Game is the third novel in the Alpha and Omega series. I recommend reading the first two novels in the series, and the novella in the On the Prowl anthology before reading this story.

Charles and Anna are husband and wife. They're also werewolves. When the strain of Charles' job as enforcer becomes a problem, he's asked to help with a serial killer investigation in Boston. The serial killer has murdered three werewolves so far, and that's something even the FBI could use a hand with. Charles and Anna are trying to reconnect on a personal level, while they also try to help the FBI. There are plenty of fae, witches, and werewolves, but humans can still be the most dangerous species to deal with. Very highly recommended.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The One You Love - Paul Pilkington

The One You Love is the first novel in the Emma Holden trilogy. This book is free for the kindle. Be warned, this is a British mystery.

Emma Holden is an actress. She's been on soaps and has some theater experience. On the night of Emma's hen party, and her fiance Dan's bachelor party, her fiance disappears. Dan's brother is found bludgeoned into unconsciousness in Emma and Dan's apartment. Who attacked the brother and where is Dan? The answer to this mystery, and others, takes what seems like an eternity to unfold. The book was suspenseful, but not in a good way. The ending was anti-climactic at best. I wouldn't read the rest of this trilogy, even if it was free. If you like British mysteries you might like this story. I did finish it, so barely recommended.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The Last Call - George Wier

The Last Call is the first novel in the Bill Travis Mystery series. This book is free for the kindle. How far would you go to help a damsel in distress?

Bill Travis is a "financial consultant." That's a job title that covers a multitude of sins, literally. When Bill's first appointment on Monday, one that he didn't schedule, is a beautiful redhead, Bill decides he's ready for some adventure. Getting punched, shot at, and blown up were probably not what he was thinking of as adventure though. This is a wild story with enough suspense and twists to keep the pages turning to the end. Very highly recommended.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Night of the Assassin - Russell Blake

Night of the Assassin is a prequel to the Assassin series. This book is free for the kindle. Did you ever wonder how El Rey became the highest paid assassin in the world? I recommend you read King of Swords first though.

The King of Swords, known as El Rey, started out as a peasant boy. This book chronicles El Rey's growth into the assassin that even the most evil cartel bosses fear. Be prepared for violence, pain, and death. Don't expect any remorse though. Very highly recommended.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

King of Swords - Russell Blake

King of Swords is the first novel in the Assassin series. This book is $2.99 for the kindle, but it's also the ninth of nine full length novels in the Killer Thriller Collection that's available for only 99 cents. There is a prequel to this series called Night of the Assassin, that's free for the kindle. That's my next read.

The King of Swords is a tarot card. The assassin called the King of Swords, or El Rey for short, uses this card as his signature with every kill. Captain Romero Cruz is in charge of the Mexican Federal Police task force on drug cartels. Cruz gets a tip from a cartel leader that El Rey has accepted a contract to assassinate the president of Mexico and the United States. This sets in motion a desperate scramble to find El Rey and spoil the plot. People behind the scenes, who Cruz can't even imagine, are doing their best to stop him from intervening. Even if it means killing Captain Cruz. This is a dark and dangerous look into the drug cartels of Mexico. There is suspense galore and depictions of brutal senseless violence. This is a tense page turner that I thoroughly enjoyed. Very highly recommended.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Corpus Christi - Luke Romyn

Corpus Christi is the first novel in the Legacy Chronicles series. This book is $3.99 for the kindle, but it's also one of nine full length novels in the Killer Thriller Collection, that's available for only 99 cents. I'm not sure why this religious fantasy is included in a collection of killer thrillers, except that there's abundant killing. By the end of the book, the thrill was gone.

Jacob Hope works for the UN. Jacob has focused his life on making a positive difference, and chose the UN as the best place to do it. On a mission to stop a civil war, Jacob is kidnapped. Then he's rescued by a man who names Jacob the Christ reborn. Jacob dismisses this claim, but has lingering doubts about what happened. Jacob's next assignment in the field is for the Red Cross in Uganda. There Jacob meets true evil for the first time and discovers he really is the Christ reborn. Adventures proceed, with Jacob battling evil and slowly discovering his special abilities.

This book would be interesting if that was the main focus, but the main focus is Jacob's angst. The author can't simply describe what's taking place in the novel. He has to spend three or four times as many words, going through Jacob's introspection, as he does Jacob's actions. By the time I was done reading my brain was almost numb. If you like religious fantasy, you might give this book a try, but I'm not going back to this author anytime soon. Barely recommended.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Quicksilver -Toni Dwiggins

Quicksilver is the prequel to the Forensic Geology Series. This book is free for the kindle. I read the first book in the Forensic Geology Series, Volcano Watch, over a year ago. Both are great books, no matter which order you read them in.

Cassie Oldfield and her partner Walter Shaws are forensic geologists. When a man asks them to help him track down his missing brother, based on a rock left as a message, they agree. It could help save a life, and they'll be looking for gold, one of Walter's passions. Cassie is worried though. Will the brother they're trying to find want to be found? This story has plenty of adventure, suspense, and danger. The problem isn't if Cassie and Walter can make it out of the mountains with the brothers. It becomes, can they make it out alive themselves. Very highly recommended.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Snake Skin - CJ Lyons

Snake Skin is the first book in the Lucy Guardino FBI Thriller series. This book is $3.99 for the kindle, but it's also one of nine full length novels in the Killer Thriller Collection that's available for only 99 cents.

Lucille Teresa Guardino is the supervisory special agent in charge of the FBI's sexual assault felony enforcement squad in Pittsburgh PA. That's fancy government speak meaning Lucy is in charge of catching perverts. Lucy is very good at her job. She should be behind a desk supervising, but Lucy does her best work in the field. Lucy is thrown in a snake pit by some pentecostal zealots, men who like to "save" little girls. Lucy thinks she's had her fill of snakes, but she's about to discover there are more snakes in her future, and guns, and bombs, and dead bodies. Lucy has to handle all the workplace hazards, and keep her family together after dragging them to Pittsburgh for her new job. The question is can Lucy survive the challenge. This is a great story. Lots of twists and turn, and a happy ending. Very highly recommended.